Изображения страниц

Him? St. Paul had a nobler purpofe; that purpose which was the object of his heart in all his writings, in all his labours; to promote the glory of God.by guiding and animating man to holiness and salvation through faith in the blood of Christ. Hear the concluding lesson, the great practical exhortation, which, as the consequence and the sum of his instructions in this chapter, he addressed to the Corinthians and now addrefleth to ourselves. Wherefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfaft, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord; forasmuch as ye know that

your labour is not in vain in the Lord. If then, my beloved brethren, whose eternal welfare ought to be my fervent desire, my unceasing prayer, my persevering and earnest pursuit; if these things be fure, be ye stedfast, unmoveable. Shew yourselves the true fervants and soldiers of your Lord. Continue unshaken in His faith. Hold fast the words of sound doctrine. Beware left any man spoil you through philofophy and vain deceit. Avoid profane and vain babblings; and oppositions of science falsely so called (1), presumptuous disputes raised on the groundwork of senseless speculation and conjecture, against truths which rest on, the promise, and are secured by the omnipotence, of God. Continue sted. (1) Col. ii. &. 1 Tim. vi. 20.



fast under temptations to sin.

Refift the Devil ; and he will flee from you. Call for fuccour to your Redeemer, whom Satan tempted in vain ; your Redeemer, who has openly triumphed on the cross over all the powers and principalities of darkness; your Redeemer, who has promised that His grace shall be sufficient for you, that He will save to the uttermost all who come unto God by Him. Continue patient and undismayed under sufferings. Look unto Jesus, the Author and finisher of your falvation ; who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is now sec down at the right hand of the throne of God. Be ye always abounding in the work of the Lord. The work of the Lord is faith unfeigned. This is the work of God: that ye believe on Him whom He hath sent (m). The work of the Lord is to do the will of God; to be holy, as He is holy. The work of the Lord is to feek' first the kingdom of God and His righteousness; to labour for the salvation of your own soul, and that of the souls of others. In this blessed work abound more and more. Strive, through the Holy Spirit, to be an example of piety. Shew yourself a Christian in thought, in word, and in deed. (10) John, vi. 29

Win others to the love of Christ and the care of their eternal interests by prudent instruction and exhortation, where you may be allowed to instruct and exhort: and at all times, and in all places, by adorning the doctrine of God your Saviour in all things, by giving unaffected proof that your heart is steadily governed by Christian motives, and filled with Christian tempers. You know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord. You know that there is a reward for the righteous: that your ascended Lord will return to receive His faints unto Himself: that while the wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the people who forget God, all who do not make it their leading object faithfully to love and serve their God and Redeemer; the just shall be exalted to the presence of God, where there is fulness of joy and pleasure for ever

Press forward then towards the mark, for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus; that you may be admitted to the Pesurrection of eternal Life. Would


feel the aweful import of that resurrection? Realise things unseen. Suppose yourself an unconverted sinner, recently separated from the body, just arrived on the confines of the invisible world. Suppose yourself addressed by one of its glorified in




“ angels.

habitants. « Behold there abodes of bliss : “ these ineffable manifestations of divine

power and wisdom and love: these worlds

beyond worlds diversified with countless “ modes of existence, filling infinity and eternity. Behold these innumerable hosts of

Behold these, thy brethren ac- , cording to the flesh, the justified children “ of thy father Adam, patriarchs, prophets, “ and apostles, saints of every tongue and

people, and nation! Lo! There is Christ, " the Redeemer of all, King in thy nature of " the universe! Lo! There is the throne of “ God! These, hadst thou accepted the offer“ed mercy, these had been thy glories! To “ search out these wonders, to share this blefl “edness, those had been thy employment, " that thy bliss, for ever! This is the Re “ surrection of life which thou hast loft. “ Thou standest”-for let penal torture be for a moment supposed not to impend—“ Thou “ standerton the brink of annihilation. Snatch os

thy last glance. The blackness of eternal “ night is about to close thee in everlasting “oblivion,” What would be thy sensations? How truly wouldst thou estimate life and all its events !. With what longing regret wouldīt thou look back upon the very miseries of mankind! With what fervency wouldg thou


implore for a renewal, were it possible, of probation!'“ Return me,” thou wouldst exclaim, “to earth! Weigh me down with “ fickness! Fetter me in dungeons! Encoin

pass me with sorrow from the cradle to the

grave! I shrink from no evil! l. decline “ no suffering! Return me to earth, what

ever anguish may await me there: that

through the riches of grace I may possess even “ but a possibility of attaining to the humblest “ of these glories; of beholding though from " the remoteft distance the countenance of

my Redeemer; of contemplating from the “ farthest corner and verge of the universe “ the presence and majesty of my God!" The dream of annihilation is dissipated. Thy existence is irrevocably prolonged to eternity. What then are thy groanings, what thine agonies, when thou beholdest the throne of judgement, the book of condemnation, the ministers of vengeance, the gulf of everlasting perdition, the prison of unregenerate men and apoftate spirits, the weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth of the affembled enemies of God! But fear not thou who art stedfast and immovable, abounding in the work of thy Lord. Christ is risen from the dead, and become the first fruits of them that slept. ' In thine appointed hour thou shalt

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »