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ness is born of him.” If Justice require us to give every one his due, let us study to be just both towards God and man. Let us give unto Cæsar the things that are Cæsar's, and unto God the things that are God's." He who gives us all our powers, requires that we should give him our hearts. Yes; constrained by the mercies of God, let us present unto him our whole selves, body and soul, time, talents, and influence, a living sacräce, holy, acceptable unto God, which is our reasonable service.
Let us also be just to men. The great, the golden, the divine rule of conduct is, « Whatsoever ye would that men should do unto you, do ye even the same unto them.” “Render to all their dues : tribute to whom tribute is due ; custom to whom custom ; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.” God abhors dishonesty, deceit, and oppression ; “ false weights and measures are an abomination to the Lord;” but “to do justice and judgment is more acceptable to him than sacrifice.” God rejected the fasts of the Jews, as solemn mockeries, because they did not “ loose the bands of wickedness, and undo the heavy burdens, and let the oppressed go free.” Nor would he accept of their offerings, “ till judgment ran down like water, and righteousness as a mighty stream.” In vain do tradesmen and workmen, masters and servants, profess a regard to the gospel, unless they adorn the holy doctrine by a holy life ; an eminent branch of which is, to act uprightly and conscientiously. Let no man then“ go beyond and defraud his brother, because that the Lord is the avenger of all such."
Finally, let us rely on the justice of God. The justice of God is engaged on the behalf of believers, as well as his mercy. By the righteousness of Christ, justice is fully satisfied, and has no demands to make on the believer; but the Christian may humbly plead the justice of God in his favour. He is just, when he justifies the believer ; and if we confess our sins,
"he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to' cleanse us from all unrighteousness." He is pleased to bind himself by his own free promises, and will assuredly be just in fulfilling them. Hence, it is written, “God is not unrighteous to forget your work of faith, and labour of love." He will do right. Much evil and injustice there now is, and always has been in the world. But every wrong, private, domestic, or public, will be called over in the great day. Then none will be thought too mean to engage his regard, none too great to escape his justice. Let this render the oppressed patient under their wrongs: “Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.” “ He will execute righteousness and judgment for all that are oppressed." He will make “inquisition for blood.”
Let the justice of God reconcile his people to all their afflictions. The King of Heaven can do no wrong; "the just Lord will do no iniquity.” Are we punished or chastised ? Let us say with holy Daniel, “O Lord, righteousness belongeth unto thee ; but unto us confusion of face : the Lord watched upon the evil, and brought it upon us ; for the Lord our God is righteous in all his works which he doeth; for we obeyed not his voice.” Dan. ix. 8, 14. He is “justified when he speaketh; he is clear when he judgeth.”
From the justice of God, let his people expect a full accomplishment of all the gracious promises on which he has caused them to hope.“ Verily there is a reward for the righteous ;"-a reward of grace, not of debt. None shall be losers by him. If they “suffer for righteousness' sake; if men revile them, and persecute them, and say all manner of evil against them, falsely, for his sake, blessed are they ; for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven." If they pray in secret, if they fast in private, if they give but a cup of cold water to a disciple of Christ, they shall in nowise lose their reward. Take courage, then, ye
humble followers of Christ; be patient until the coming of our Lord; be not weary of well doing ; fight the good fight; persevere in your course ; keep the faith; for henceforth there is laid up for you a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give unto you at that day ;” and then shall an assembled world be constrained to say, " He is the rock; his work is perfect; for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth, and without iniquity-Just and right is he.”
THE OMNIPRESENCE* OF GOD.
Psalm cxxxix. 7.
Whither shall I flee from thy presence ?
, ject of our meditation, a holy awe should possess our minds, like that which Moses felt when he approached the burning bush, which displayed a visible token of the divine presence : he was then commanded to take off his shoes as a mark of reve. rence, for the presence of God made the place itself holy. So when Abraham conversed with Jehovah in prayer, being deeply sensible of his own unworthi. ness, he cried out, i Behold! I who am dust and ashes, have taken upon me to speak to the Most High God!" Such thoughts as these should fill our hearts, when we attempt to display, with our feeble and polluted powers, the infinite perfections of the great Supreme.
That awful, sublime, and most useful truth, which now calls for our serious attention, is this,
THE GREAT GOD IS EVERYWHERE PRESENT.
This doctrine seems necessarily to result from our belief of a divine Being—at least of such a Being
• As these Sermons are intended chiefly for plain people, the author admits a hard word unwillingly; but when the divine Perfections are the subject, it is difficult to avoid them entirely. It may be sufficient to say, that Omnipresence is unbounded presence, or a presence everywhere. In like man. ner, Omnipotent signifies, Almighty-powerful without limit. Omniscient is infinitely wise, knowing every thing.
as deserves the title Divine ;
for to suppose
him confined to certain bounds and limits, is, in fact, to make him no God at all. Although some of the heathens said great things of their deities, yet in general their notions of them were low and trifling. They imagined that different gods presided over different countries ; and, on some occasions, chained down their idols lest they should fursake them. Elijah, the prophet of Jehorah, rallied the disappointed worshippers of Baal; for, when they had cried from morning till noon, " O Baal, hear us!” and there was no answer, Elijah mocked them, and said, “Cry aloud, for he is a god” (so you profess to believe) but perhaps he is too busy to regard you“ he is talking, or pursuing, or he is on a journey, or perhaps he is asleep, and must be awaked.” 1 Kings xviii, 27. But the glorious God, whom we adore, cannot thus be mocked; he is present everywhere; and especially, “where two or three" are assembled for his worship. He is here.
That God is, and cannot but be, everywhere present, will evidently appear, if you cons der,
1. His Infinity;
1. God is infinite ; and therefore omnipresent. To be infinite, is to be without bounds or limits ; consequently, there are no limits to his presence. An infinite being cannot be contained in a finite space. It is the property of all creatures to be confined within certain bounds; and therefore we call them finite: but it is the property of the Creator to be unlimited, confined by no bounds ; and therefore he is termed infinite. He is so in all his perfections: his knowledge is infinite ; his power is infinite ; his holiness is infinite, and so is his presence. " Whither then shall I flee from thy presence ?"
Let us illustrate this great truth from the psalm