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people the spirit of repentance and true conversion.
In vain shall we contend by argument for the faith delivered to the saints, if we do not in our lives display its power. Alas! the most formidable objections of infidels against Christianity are drawn from the unworthy lives of its proposed disciples. When the idolators of human reason see those who call themselves worshippers of GOD as selfish, as covetous, as earthlyminded, as sensual as themselves, they cannot believe it to possess any real efficacy. When I exhort my country parishioners to an attendance on Divine ordinances, I am often told that they do not perceive those who attend to be better in their conduct than those who neglect them and when the members of our London congregations hasten from the house of GOD to scenes of a wholly different character-when their carriages are observed bearing them to the parks or hurrying from street to street for a succession of unprofitable visits, will it be believed that they have attended with due seriousness unto the services of the Church, or profitted by the instructions of her ministers ? Even where anxiety is shown to follow after good instruction, is this never done in a sectarian spirit? Do we never find one minister set up as an object of admiration above another, some praising Paul, some Apollos, some Cephas, but too few remembering that the teacher is but the instrument, and GOD the agent; that Christ is our only master, and that conformity to him, and union with him, ought to be the great objects both of preachers and of hearers? My brethren, let us not deceive ourselves in this matter: if we would prove that we are truly on the Lord's side, we must steadily walk as he also walked, and make his glory the manifest object of all our actions. Allow me, then, once more to appeal to your own consciences concerning the evidence which your daily conversation gives of devotedness to him. I urged upon you, last Sunday, the duty of glorifying GOD, and called upon you to consider your domestic proceedings. Have you done so? Have you reflected upon the importance of family religion? Have you commenced the instruction of your
children and servants, and determined on the proper employment of that portion of the Sabbath which is not spent in the sanctuary, and aimed at the exhibition of Christian graces in the intercourse of social life?
If it were merely as a matter that respected your temporal interests, I might with great propriety enforce these duties, for most certainly nothing can save this land from universal anarchy but the revival of real godliness. If, as a nation and as individuals, we do return to Him from whom we have so deeply revolted, we may confidently hope that He will avert the heavy judgments hanging over our heads and ready to descend upon us. But if we do not-if neither the rulers, nor the nobles, nor the people of the land, will humble themselves to glorify the GOD of heaven, then will He withdraw those restraints which keep the winds of revolutionary tempest from blowing upon the earth, they will be let loose to destroy, and every institution, every interest, every possession, will be involved in one common ruin.
Begin, then, I beseech you, as many as hear me this day, by rallying yourselves under the banners of your crucified Redeemer. Be not ashamed to confess his faith amidst a sinful and adulterous generation; and take care that he shall have no cause to be ashamed of confessing you as his disciples. Endeavour, next, to enlist as many as possible under the same sacred standard. Let your own families and immediate connections be the first objects of your care. Show them, by example, and, as opportunity may be afforded, endeavour to convince them by argument of the truth and excellence of Christianity. If power is given you to extend your operations by writing, by public testimony, by circulating useful publications, by contributing to the support of holy religious institutions, avail yourselves with gladness of the means thus afforded you.
Let it also be your study to promote the spirit of unity amongst real Christians. I say amongst real Christians, or at least those whom, in the judgment of genuine charity, we may esteem such. This is a very different course from that compromise of doc
trine, that habit of blending every | shade of sentiment, recommended by our modern liberalists. No, we must be strenuous in maintaining what we believe to be the truth, and willing to receive instruction concerning it from others. Yet may we bear with much contrarity of sentiment with respect to modes of discipline or worshipwith respect to any thing, indeed, that does not affect the vitality of religion. Acting upon this principle, we ought to cultivate brotherly love to the utmost, and make any personal sacrifices rather than prejudice or mislead the weakest of God's children. Towards the enemies of the truth, we must show no intemperate resentment; but, at the same time, must not hesitate to proclaim our uncomprising resistance to their erroneous doctrines and wicked practices. The sword employed against them must be the sword of the spirit-the defence which we must oppose to them must be the shield of faith-the armour with which we must clothe ourselves must be the armour of righteousness. In patience, we must, through divine grace, possess our souls, whilst the day of trial lasts; and that grace we must not cease to implore with all prayer and supplication in the spirit.
We need not, then, fear the utmost fury of our enemies. Whether or not GoD will permit them to have a transient triumph we cannot foresee; but of this we may be assured, that their triumph will be but transient, and will end in their complete discomfiture. The adversaries of the Lord shall be found liars, and be broken in pieces by his iron sceptre, like a potter's vessel. When the enemy shall come in like a flood" the Scripture assures us that "the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him." The Church may be purified by judgments, but it shall not be destroyed. It may be cast into the furnace, but it shail come forth as gold. We have the word of Christ himself, that "the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Be of good courage, then, ye faithful followers of Jesus, for ere long you shall be more than conquerors, through him that loved you. Let it be your care to fight a good fight, to finish your course, to keep the faith, and you shall assuredly receive that crown of righteousness which the Lord is ready to give all those who love his appearing. If you keep the word of his patience he will keep you from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world to try all those that dwell on the earth. It is his voice, which says unto you," Behold I come quickly; hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown. Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out, and I will write upon him the name of my GOD, and the name of the city of my GOD, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh out of heaven from my God, and I will write upon him my new name."
Whilst we pray for ourselves, for our brethren, for our country, for our enemies, we ought to supplicate with peculiar earnestness for the ministers of God, who are bound to stand forward in the celestial warfare, that wisdom may be given them to understand, and courage to pursue the proper course, that they may be enabled to reprove rebuke, exhort with all long-suffering and doctrine, to do the work of evangelists, to make full proof of their ministry.
It is thus I apprehend that we ought to answer the enquiry, "Who is on the Lord's side?" Thus that we must endeavour "to withstand in the evil day, and having done all to stand."
May that name be inscribed on each of us, my beloved brethren, for the sake of the same adorable Redeemer, to whom with the Father and the Holy Ghost be ascribed all honour and glory. Amen.
London: Published for the Proprietors, by T. GRIFFITHS, Wellington Street, Strand ; and Sold by all Booksellers in Town and Country.
Printed by Lowndes and White, Crane Court, Fleet Street.
AT ST. MARK'S CHURCH, CLERKENWELL, FOR THE RELIEF of the distRESS IN IRELAND, JUNE 26, 1831.
1 John, iii. 16-19.-" Hereby perceive we the love of GOD, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of GOD in him? My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.”
I COULD have wished that the hallowed cause of mercy, which is this morning to be pleaded in this place, had a better advocate than him who now addresses you. Labouring under a violent cold, he had many fears lest he should be unable to make an affectionate people hear what he had to say on this work of tender benevolence and love. He casts himself, however, upon your prayers-he looks up to heaven for the assistance, without which we are met together in vain.
My brethren, I glory in this, that though we are weak, our Lord and Master is mighty; and though we are but earthen vessels, yet we have a treasure in those earthen vessels; yet still but earthen vessels that the excellency of the power may be cf GOD and not of us, that He may have all the praise, and all the honour, and all the glory, and that for ever and ever.
I glory in the Holy Bible, not only as furnishing the best rules for a Christian life-not only as teaching us the way to heaven, but as urging the strongest motives to hallowed benevo
lence and Christian love. Why is it that on such an occasion as the present, we take not up into the pulpit the writings of some ancient moralist— of some great philosopher-of some eminent philanthropist? Why do we keep to the old book, and the great book, the blessed book-the Bible; not only when we would reprove your errors, but when we would excite your benevolence-not only when we would show you the way to heaven, but when we would draw you forth, and lead you by the hand to works of mercy? Why? For this sufficient reason, that there is no religion under heaven like Christianity for moving and melting the heart, and thus impelling men to acts of disinterested beneficence.
Oh, tell me if you can what Christianity did in olden times, in times of suffering and of sorrow, when, indeed, starvation was not so apparent, but when martyrdom mowed down one on the right, and another on the left, and left many an helpless orphan, and many a weeping widow to be cared for, and to be fed by a church poor
and destitute. But what, though the Christian church was then possessed of little property, it made up for its lack of pecuniary means by the energy of its graces, and by the ardour of its devotedness to its Lord and Master. Every professing Christian, then, felt that he was not his own, but that he was bought with a price-and that, therefore, he was bound to glorify GOD in his body and his spirit, which are GOD'S.
of the seed of Abraham, it is to you in your Christian character that these words make their solemn appeal.
Let me, then, in the First place, consider
From these words thus introduced to your notice, I shall consider two things. First, THE LOVE OF GOD, AND HOW IT WAS SHOWN.-Secondly, THE
Let me turn to the words, then, of the evangelist-the confessor-the Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ. The words of my text speak for themselves. May the GOD of heaven send them home with power to every heart-love of GoD with our duty to our bro"Hereby perceive we the love of GoD, ther. I might, indeed, go and talk of because he laid down his life for us: benevolence-I might tell you much and we ought to lay down our lives for of the excellence and of the sympathe brethren. But whoso hath this thies of human nature-I might deworld's good, and seeth his brother clare how good the heart of man have need, and shutteth up his bowels is, and how naturally and necesof compassion from him, how dwelleth sarily it feels for suffering humanity; the love of GoD in him? My little and if I told you so I should tell you children, let us not love in word, neian egregious lie, contrary to all GOD's ther in tongue; but in deed and in word and declarations on the subject. truth.". No, my brethren, the human heart is not such a tender thing, it is not so susceptible. It is, alas, alienated from Gon; and that being the case its sympathies are alienated from their right and legitimate objects, and too generally fixed upon those things by which it is at once softened and degraded.
I come, then, to the love of GOD. If, indeed, as is, alas, the case, some of you are not Christians, then this may be nothing to you, and you may be ready to turn your back on the preacher and to say, "What care we for these doctrinal matters on which you are perpetually enlarging. We came this morning to hear of good works, and in their stead you preach to us of faith." But remember, I pray you, it is of "faith which worketh by love." And yet, methinks, there are not a few amongst you who will
THE LOVE OF GOD, AND THE WAY IN WHICH IT WAS MANIFEsted. I can well conceive that, were it proper to speak aloud, some would be ready to express what they are now thinking, and to exclaim, "Ah, sir, you are going to your old and favourite subject, to what you call the Gospel." I am—you are right—perfectly right. And, if you ask why I do this, I answer, because the Apostle does it in the text-because he connects the
SUFFERINGS OF OUR BROTHER, AND
HOW THEY ARE TO BE MET.-In discus-
expect that the Christian pulpit should | Oh, it was a dread hour when cheru
bim and seraphim hushed and were still, and all heaven watched to see what the GOD of glory would do. And what, I pray you, did He do? What? Let our blessed Lord declare.
not be the organ of uncnristian doctrine-who expect, if we address ourselves as a Christian priesthood in a Christian temple, we should urge Christian motives. I might go to the man of the world's book, and might urge the claims of Ireland on other and lower grounds; I might tell you much of the advantage of assisting the distant parts of the empire, and bring forward a thousand motives, some of them of a political nature, some of a commercial nature; but I leave them all, every one, and I come to the Holy Bible, and I appeal, as a servant of GOD, to the love of GCD, as exhibited in Christ Jesus our Lord.
This love we are now to consider, and the way in which it was shown. Long, long was it before the love of GOD was known as a Divine attribute. It was known that He possessed other attributes. It was known that He was holy, that He was just, that He was pure, that He was omnipotent. And when angels rebelled against His Divine government, He was found to be fearful in holiness. Yes, verily, when rebellion arose in the empire of his glory in heaven, what did he do? He crushed it by his power. Angels sinned, and angels were cast down from the abodes of light to the abyss of eternal darkness, but not one whisper about the love of GoD was heard, nor any manifestation of it then vouchsafed.
A new order of beings arose-man created after the image of God. This image he but too soon forfeited, and he thereby lost the likeness of his Father and his Gon. And now all in heaven were watching to see what would be done-whether man would be treated as the previous transgressors had been treated-whether he would be sent down to the abodes of darkness, and there made to curse the day that he ever sinned against his Maker.
God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." I glory in this exhibition of the Divine character-I declare and protest to you before GoD this day, there never was such a glorious manifestation of the Divine attributes as on that occasion. There the great and eternal GoD displayed his own glory, and unfolded his own character, and bade not only men, but bade all the heavenly host, see and know not only that "GOD is light," but that GOD IS LOVE. "Hereby perceive we the love of GoD, because he laid down his life for us."
My brethren, I would know one thing, have you perceived this love? Some of you have, but many of you as yet have not. You have perceived other things-you have perceived the majesty, at least something of it—and have discovered something of the power of God, and you never think of the Divinity but with feelings of awe and reverence and abasement. You are right. But know it, O man, thy God would have thee think of Him, not only with reverence, not only with abasement, but with gratitude. He would have thee think of Him as having given his Son to die for thy sins. He would have thee dwell on this and be amazed at it, and be overwhelmed by it. And thus he would draw thee to live a holy life, not drive thee to it as a slave, but allure thee to it as a child by the love of his Father. Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us.'
My dear brethren, I will defy all the sons of men in all their generations, from Adam, our great proge