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dependent of, both these forms of or the partner of your bosom, had supplication. It may be properly excited the apprehension of danger and effectually performed, at any and death. At that agonizing bour, time, in any place, whatever we be who has not felt his own weakness, engaged in, whether in reading, his own inability to protect and writing, or meditation ; whether we save? Who has not poured forth be pursuing the necessary occupa- bis soul in supplication to that tions of life, or partaking of its stupendous Being, in whom alone more trifling recreations and de- are the issues of life? And this lights. During any of these em- is the very time and the occasion, ployments, we may still offer up a when we appear as it were to be short address to, and commune drawn nearer ļo, and to have a with, our God. We may, though more spiritual intercourse withi. but for a moment, prostrate our
the Almighty. The heart is in the souls before him; we may im- prayer, and we implore, as plore his influence- his fatherly ought, the Lord and Giver of all hand-his protection. When, to things. If our prayers he heard, all human appearance, we are en- how fervently and gratefully do we grossed in the passing concerns acknowledge the Divine blessing and petty anxieties of the world, and interposition! We do not then we may yet, in the midst of all wait for the recurrence of that these, send up an availing prayer stated period at which our devounto the Throne of Grace; we tions are usually offered up, but may pour forth the warm feeling at the moment, and without preof gratitude and love, unseen byparation, thanks from the heart, any human eye, unobserved but by and not the lips alone, are poured that Being, unto whom all bearts forth; and they may ascend, as we are open, and from whom uo secrets humbly hope and pray, a sacrifice
not unpleasing to the Majesty on His lordship next shews, by a high. Now this sense of protecvariety of cases, that there is no tion, this dependent frame of mind, age or station in which this secret which the illness or danger of communion with God is not a duty those most dear to us thus temand a privilege. The young, the porarily excites, should be the perold, the rich, the poor, the pros- vading and habitual feeling of every perous, the dejected, are all in- true Christian towards his Creator vited to “draw nigh to God," and Redeemer." with the encouraging hope that
While inculcating the duty in “ he will draw nigh to theni.” The question, his lordship bas not forbishop then adds:
gotten to remind the penitent of “ But it is not necessary, were it Him by whom alone we can have possible, to particularize all the access to the Father; Him who is occurrences and concerns which so
“the Mediator of the new covenant,” continually and powerfully call and the sole “way" through which upon us to keep God in all our guilty and offending man can apthoughts. It is the principle, the proach a Being of infinite justice mode of prayer which I have been and purity. I could wish that his endeavouring, 10 illustrate and re- lordship had entered more fully commend by these examples.
I into this part of his subject, parknow not, however, how I can more ticularly as it would have naturally accurately, or more forcibly, de- introduced some of the most imscribe this religious feeling, thau portant features of the Gospel, and by bringing back to your recollec. some of the holiest mysteries of tion those sensations, which many the Christian life. Indeed, nothing of you must have experienced, when is less intelligible to the mere mau the illness of a parent, of a child, of the world, or to the formalist in
religion, than truly spiritual com- a personal application, which too munion with God. But to return many, it is to be apprehended, ento the extract.
tirely fail in exerting. Whereas a “ Let out any one be deterred supplication, it thanksgiving, the from this breathing out his soul lifting lip the eye or hand, an ejabefore the great Creator of all culation, a thouglit elicited at the things, by a consciousness of liis moment by passing occurrences, numberless fraillies and Trans- must be llie effusion of the heart, gressions. God, indeed, is of parer and can never be poured forth in eyes than to behold iniquily: nor vaiu. Here our prayers are parcan any of the sons of men, by ticularizcu. They arise from the their own merits alone, stand jus- occasion ; the occasion prompts the tified in lois siglit. De it, how. prayer. No other ideas can intermix ever, always remembered, that willi i bois act of adoraiion. We must unworthy as we are, we may still pray propeily, if we pray at all. look up to a Divine Allvocate and « U. Anoiher recommendation Redeemer. Jesus Christ limself, of this noile of worship is, the who partook of our nature, wlio quickness and the facility with died for our sins, and who knoweth which it may be performed. It whereof we are made, is now scated requires no seclusion, no prepaat the right hand of Goul, to male ration, 110 language, but the lanintercession for us. llumbled ilien guage of the heart. We have the as man must be, by a sense of his Temple of the Lord always withia own omissions and lemerils, yet is lis; and can continually present he still encouraged to draw wigh to him that oblation and homage to tlie Throne of Mercy, and grate, which we know are well pleasing fully approach the Faiher through in his siglil. Genius and eloquence the Son."
here are of no avail. The most illiI will only entreat space for one terate aie not less accepiable than extract more, in wliichi lois lord- the vost learnell. To will, is to do. ship stales some of the advantages “ III. Among the many benefiof " That vital but neglected mode cial effects arising from ihus beof worship,” which it is the object holding the Deity in all things, one of his discourse to inculcaie. of the most important is, that the
“ I. In the first place, it has proper discharge of this duty, and ibis superiority over public and ibe habitual coumission of sin, are domestic prayer, invaluable as they totally irreconcileable and can never both are, that it cannot be per- subsist together. Who can dare formed at all, without a pre-clis- 10 hold converse with his God, and posing and devoui al’ection of yet resolve 10 perpeirate the deeds mind. We may join in repeating of darkness ? the words of our Liturgy, we may
“ IV. No better test alsò than bend the knee with our family in this can be adıluced 10 prove, wheprayer, wiilout one suitable scel. ther we are or are not in the numing being excited, without approv- ber of those wlio belong unto God. ing ourselves the more onio Him, In our performance or veglect of whom outwardly we appear to this duly, we can be subject to no adore. Set forms of words nust, delusion or mistake.
Whereas we from their very nature, be adapted may observe the externals of reto the general infirmities and wants ligion, may maintain an outward of all mankind : they are iherefore propriely and decorum of manners, to be referrerl, by each ivdividual, may even do many kind and chato the peculiar circumstances and ritable actions, and yet all this, necessities of his own case. And wishout the true Christian motive, on this account they require an will profit us nothing. But no one abstraction of thought, an effort, can inwardly commune with his
Maker and Redeemer, no que can the Mosaic dispensation is asserted earnestly implore the Divine Spirit, by St. Paul to have been, in the willout becoming a holier and a scheme of Providence, a necessary betler man.
introduction to the Chistian reli“Need I, or can I say more, to gion; but because our Lord himinduce a Christian audience to sell, ou niany occasions, ratified draw Digle unto God, that su he and confirmed it by the strongest may draw nigli uirlo ibeni?” sanctions, and proved by his uni
The reader will be pleased to form obedience to is, that he ac. find his lordship adverting in bum- knowledged its Divine authority, ble, but decisive, terms, lo his own But if the stale of religion be personal experieoce, that "through- considered, as it cxisted throughout a life, as bappy as lise appeais oul the world, in the age of Moses, intended to have been," this sceret the whole of this objection will fall intercourse with God has been his to the ground; and that which has constant habit and purest delight; 100 lighily been regarded by cer. that “under lesser calaorities and loin rasla os superticial minds, as disquietudes," it has made him an insuperable obstacle to admit"more than conqueror;" whiile ting the truth of the Mosaic dispenunder “ heart-remiting domestic sation, will be found to contrui its privations," it bas formed his “only heavenly origin, and to affordastrik. consolatiou and stay."
in proof of ihe Divine wisdom and goodness. For when the Almighty
separated the posterity of AbraTotke Editor of the Christian Obserocr. beam from the other families of the
enlli, and by a new revelation of AMONG the objections which have himself and of the worship which been made to the truth of the di- lice requireal, made them the sole vine mission of Moses, there is oue deposiiaries of the true religiou, it which appears to some persons of is evident, that all the other napeculiar force. It is biielly this: vions bail, eilber wholly or in part, that it is quite irreconcileable with apostali zeal from the worship of Jeour natural apprehensions of the lovali
, au il had fallen into the pracDivine Majesiy, 10 suppose, tai tice of the grosses idolatries and the circunstaviial directions which nost delasing supersiilions. Moses delivered respecting the en- Il is a malier of some interest to tire ritual ofilie Levitical worships trace the causes of this general deeven to the vesinents of the priesis, Section. Jelwval " jeconciling the the furniture of the labernacle, the world unto himself” througli Christ, very cords, aud mails, and hangings the promised Seed, and nol imof the sanctuary, the stones of ile puting their trespasses unto them," altar, and similar particulars, were was the sole object of primitive prescribed, as he afirms, by the worslin. For, immediately upon inouth of God himself. The inser- the fall of our first parents, God ence is, that Moses, in assensing siis gave them the promise of a Reimmediate communication will the deemer; and together with this Almighty on all such wivial points promise, he enjoined them the as these, acted iliepart of an im- jite os animal sacrifices, as a type postor; and consequently, that ile both of that death which is the religion which he promulgated has wages of sin, and of that propitiano claim to be achiller as a Divine tioii which he had appointed for Tevelatio.l. Nor is this the whole its pardoni. Accordingly, we find of the consequence; for if the that the offering of vicarious aui. mission of Moses be an imposture, mal sacritices prevailed universally the mission of our blessed Lord over all the ancient world; and must be so 100;—not only because with it, were preserved some obscure traces of the ends for which imposing splendour of its outward that significant institution was ap- forms, but with this fundamental pointed; men every where feeling difference, that whilst the ceremoihat their offences against God nies of the pagau worship univerdeserved punishment, and that sally tended io efface the knowledge they stood in need of some atone of the Almighty, and its mistaken sament to render them capable of crifices led its votaries to put their pardon. But as the nature of the trust in imaginary mediators ; all Deity, and the promise of the Re- the rites of the Mosaic religion dideemer, were gradually obscured rectly conduced to preserve the acand forgotten, the Supreme Being knowledginent of the one true God, was represented under characters and pointed to the only effectual the most discordant to his real at- Mediator between God and man. tributes; and men, conscious of In the second place, as the unautheir guilt, looked about for other thorized human superadditions to mediators to appease the wrath of the divinely appointed ceremonies their imaginary gods, and invented of the primitive worship, had, in new methods of atonement, such as the end, proved utterly subversive they hoped would avert the fury of of all true religion, it was, surely, their supposititious deities. Hence a point of the highest importance arose the horrible system of human to guard the chosen race from such sacrifices, and all the barbarous a fruitful source of fatal errors, sites, the gaudy pomps, and impure and to convince them, that, in the ceremonies of heathen worship. In worship of the Creator, not even short, from the superstitious ob- the minutest circumstance is acservance of the outward form of ceptable, except it be done in conreligion, when its spirit was gone, formity to his will, and in obedience and from the unauthorized devia. to his command. For this purpose, tions from it and additions to it, every circumstance in the Mosaic
icb in the lapse of years were religion was made the subject of a continually introduced by men, who Divine precept; and in the whole “ not retaining God in their know- structure of the Jewishi temple, and ledge," made gods to themselves its service, nothing was done, but after their own image, and sought as “the Lord said unto Moses." to please them by ways of their To these brief remarks I will own discovering, were derived all only add, that, as it is certain that We monstrous aboninations of “no man hath seen God at any those false religions which every time, nor heard his voice," it was where prevailed throughout the an- the concurrent sense of all primitient world, and whichi, whilst they tive Christian antiquity, that the degraded humanity to the lowest Jehovah who shewed himself to point, equally dishonoured the Di- Moses, and the other saints and vine nature.
prophets of the Old Testament, To preserve the Israelites from
was no other than the eternal and a similar apostacy, two points were co-equal Word, by whom alone the to be secured. In the first place, counsels of the paternal mind have as the alluring shews of pagan wor- been personally revealed to man. ship were admirably calculated to
Y. captivate the gross imaginations of the vulgar, Jehovah, in order to
FAMILY SERMONS. No.CXXXIII, preserve his chosen people from being drawn aside into the idola- Luke xv. 24.—This my son was trous practices of the surrounding
dead, and is alive again: he was nations, was pleased to appoint
lost, and is found. then a religious ceremonial sur. Our Lord probably intended the passing all others, perhaps, in the affecting parable of which tbesc words form the conclusion, more and it is immediately added, that immediately to represent the state “ he gathered all together, and of the publicans and pharisees, or took a journey into a far country, of the Jews and the Gentiles. But and wasted his substance with riotit applies so forcibly to the case of ous living." Unhappy youth! to us all, that we should lose the be- quit so bouutiful a friend! Unnefit of much important instruc- grateful child, thus to repay so kind tion, if we failed to consider it as a parent! Yet while we censure relating to ourselves. We, like the prodigal, let us ask ourselves the prodigal son, have siuned if there be nothing in our own conagaiost a gracious Parent; we, duct towards God that resembles like him, need forgiveness ; and if that which we blame. While enlike him we return to the Parent riched with his bounties, how often whom we have forsaken, we shall have we forsaken him, and despised find, as he did, a merciful reception, his commandments! By means of and shall be restored to all the sin, we have lost the original digprivileges which we had forfeited nity in which our first father was by our disobedience. Of each of created: we have acted unwisely and as it will then be said, as it was ungratefully: “we have forsaken the of the returning prodigal, He was fountain of living waters, and have dead, and is alive again ; he was hewn out to ourselves cisterns, lost, and is found. Let us, then, broken cisterns, which can hold no with reference to our own case,
water." Our pleasures, our vaniproceed to consider his departure; ties, our corrupt inclinations, have his distress; his repentance; and occupied the place in our affections his return and reception.
which was due to God; we have 1. His departure. This prodigal loved and served the creature more was the youoger son of a tender than the Creator; and, instead of parent; he was surrounded with listening to his voice and obeying the comforts of life; he had doubt. his precepts, have, like the prodigal, less been treated with peculiar wandered as far as possible from kindness and affection; so that it bis controi. We may not have was both his duty and his privilege been grossly vicious in our lives; to continue under the care, and to neither, perhaps, was the subject enjoy the society and instruction, of the parable in the early stages of his indulgent parent.
of his career; but his first and Thus has God acted towards us ; great crime, and that which led to thus have we been nurtured from all the rest, was deserting his faour înfancy by his bounty; thus ther's roof; in order, no doubt, to has be made our cup to run over
throw off the restraint of pater. with blessings, affording us care nal authority. And thus it is with and protection, and all necessary the sinner: having once wandered mercies for this life, with the bright from Him who had the first claim hopes and prospects of an eternal to his affections, and sought for one in the world to come. And
satisfaction elsewhere than in the all be demanded in return, was our paths of religion and obedience to obedience and affection; that we God, he resembles this unhappy should faithfully serve him upon prodigal, and knows not how soon earth, in order to enjoy his pre- he may, like him, wanton in all the sence and favour for ever in the excesses of riotous living. kingdom of heaven.
2. Such was his departure : let But the prodigal became dis
behold his consequent contevted with his father's house. distress. “And when he bad spent "Give me," said be, " the portion all, there arose a mighty famine in of goods that falleth to me." His the land, and he began to be in kather complied with his request; want." True satisfaction can be
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