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continually praises, with the voice of joy and gratitude, for all his wonderful mercies and loving kind
How then can the Christian soul ever be alone; or how can she ever be idle? With these comforts and encouragements she walks on in the way of God's commandments, pressing forward in the course of a holy obedience, from one degree of perfection to another. The world is not suffered to lead the way, or to intrude as a companion, but follows behind as a servant. If she falls, she is not cast away, for God upholds her with his right hand, by giving unto her the grace of a speedy and hearty repentance. And thus with cheerfulness and constancy she goes from strength to strength, till, having passed the valley of death, and ascended the holy hill, she appears before the God of Gods in the heavenly Sion. Whoever walks with God in this manner, will have the testimony given to Enoch, that he pleased him. For so the blessed Jesus, who walked in the way of life, without ever turning aside to the right hand or to the left, before his translation had this testimony that he pleased God, several times repeated. At his baptism, when he came up out of the water, lo, a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased'. Again, upon mount Tabor, when as an earnest of his approaching translation, the glory of his eternal Godhead broke through the veil of his humanity that was cast over it, diffusing itself from his soul to his body, and from thence to his garments, till he became ex
i Matt. iii. 17.
ceeding glorious, his face shining like the sun, and his raiment white as the light; then from the excellent glory came there a sound, as of the voice of the Almighty God when he speaketh, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear him". In like manner, we have it recorded, John xii. 28. that no sooner did he request such a testimony, standing upon earth in the streets of Jerusalem, but he was answered immediately in thunder from heaven- Father, glorify thy name! Then came there a voice from heaven, saying, I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again. And to show that his death, as well as his life, was accepted, a sacrifice well pleasing unto the Lord, when he yielded up the ghost on the cross, the veil of the temple, which parted the sanctuary from the holy of holies, rending asunder from the top to the bottom, gave evident demonstration, that the communication was opened between earth and heaven, or, as the apostle expresses it, a way made into the holiest by the blood of Jesus '. Let the Christian, then, who desires to pass from this dark scene of sorrows into the joys and glories of the celestial city, remember, that before his translation thither froin the grave and gate of death, he must have this testimony, that he pleased God; he must have a good conscience bearing him witness in the Holy Ghost that he has walked with God in the way of his commandments and ordinances. On this testimony let him build his assurance, and he shall do well.
* Matt. xvii. 5.
1 Heb. 8. 19.
6. His Translation. The reward of Enoch's faith, thus working by love unto obedience, was an immediate translation to the kingdom of glory. He was not, says Moses, for God took him : he was not found, says St. Paul, for God had translated him. And here was of necessity a difference between the copy and its great original. Enoch, being designed to represent the great prophet more particularly in the article of his ascension into heaven, and not in those of his sufferings or resurrection, was translated, that he should not see death; whereas Christ was to taste death for every man (Enoch among the rest) and so to ascend into his glory. But although he tasted death, he saw no corruption ; and being quickly raised again from the dead, he dieth no more, death hath no more dominion over him: nor is he any longer found on earth, be. cause God has translated him. Why seek ye the living among the dead? said the angel to the women at the sepulchre; he is not here, he is risen. Henceforth know we him no more after the flesh. He is no longer the lowly Jesus of Nazareth on earth, but the tri. umphant Lord of glory in heaven; and men see him not again, till the time appointed of the Father for the accomplishment of Enoch's prophecy, when he cometh in the clouds to judgement, attended with ten thousands of saints. And then, what was foreshowed by the translation of Enoch, and fulfilled in the ascen. sion of the natural body of Christ, shall be brought pass
likewise in his mystical body, the church, and the members thereof. They who sleep in the dust
of the earth, shall awake, and arise, and be caught up in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air, and to be for ever with him. They shall not be found in the ruins of a burning world, because God shall have translated them to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for them. This is but the completion of that great work begun in them by the Spirit of God in this life, renewing and transforming their souls by hearty repentance, lively faith, and fervent charity; by prayer, and fasting, and almsdeeds ; by holy mourning, and pious meditation; by reading, hearing, and communicating, thus training them up by the means of grace to the hope of glory; delivering them, as the apostle phrases it, from the power of darkness, and translating them into the kingdom of his dear Son, in whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins". Blessed and holy is he who hath part in this first translation from sin to righteousness, the sure pledge and earnest of the second from dust to glory. Thus have we the Christian life, and the glorious reward that is to crown it, set before us in those few, but significant words_ENOCH WALKED WITH GOD, AND WAS
m Col. ii. 14.
THE LIFE OF NOAH.
1. His Name. No sooner was there a son born to Lamech, but he gave him the name of Noah, a word involving in it the ideas of rest and consolation, at the same time assigning the reason in a prophecy relating to himThis same shall comfort us concerning our work, and the toil of our hands, because of the ground which the Lord hath curseda. The great object of the wishes and hopes of the faithful in the ancient church ever was the removal of that curse brought by sin upon the earth, the destruction and dissolution of which it effected in the days of Noah.
He was ordained to be the restorer of mankind, the head and father of the new world, when it should arise out of the ruins of the old. And this seems to have been the accomplishment of Lamech's prediction, viz. the removal of that dreadful effect of the curse upon the
. Gen. v. 29.