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making ready by repentance and prayer, for the coming of His kingdom: it is they whose faces shall one day shine forth with the brightness of an angel; and though they may not be, as Stephen was, blessed with the glorious sight whilst here, yet hereafter, they shall most assuredly behold the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.

For His sake, my brethren, for our own sake, let us look well to ourselves. Nothing but a life of righteousness and holiness, springing from a lively faith in Christ crucified, can ever bring us to the blessedness of heaven. Therefore let it be our study, with God's help, to break through every sin, and every neglect of our duty, to which we have at any time given way: serving Him with more earnestness, and greater love: drawing near to Him with the heartiest repentance, and the deepest sorrow, for all that we have done amiss in the whole course of our lives, and beseeching Him to look upon us with pity, and forgive us in mercy for Christ's sake. When we are thus dead unto sin, and alive

unto God, we shall be prepared for the worst that can happen to us; and when at last he shall summon us to leave this world of trouble, we shall be able to cry with Stephen, Lord Jesus receive my spirit, in the sure and certain hope that He will receive it into everlasting glory. Brethren, let us think of these things! and God in His goodness give us all grace so to live, that we may die the death of the righteous, and that our last end may be like his! Amen.


JOHN ix. 4.

The night cometh when no man can work.

If these serious words of our blessed Saviour received from mankind the attention which He meant them to receive, and which they deserve, there would be an end to all that carelessness, folly, and wickedness, which are now so plentiful. They would remind us of the purpose for which our Maker has placed us in this world--they would remind us that we have a work of the greatest importance upon our hands, that our time for doing it is uncertain, and that it is the greatest foolishness in us to put it off till too late. Instead of wasting and throwing away our precious time, we should consider the danger of neglecting the work which is expected of

us, and leaving it unfinished, or not begun, till the coming of that night, the night of death, which must for ever hinder us from going on with it.

And what, my brethren, is this great work which you, and I, and all men living have to think of? Is it not this,-The making our peace with God through Jesus Christ? The making ourselves fit, by the help of His Holy Spirit, to meet Him in the day of judgment, and to enter into the everlasting joys of heaven? in one word, to save our souls? And is not this a work of far greater consequence to us than anything else besides? Is it not one for which our whole lives are scarcely sufficient? Yet how many of us are there who do not seem to think so! How many who, instead of doing all that they can to make sure of the glory and happiness which God promises hereafter, seem to be doing all that they can think of to bring themselves to ruin and to shame! And how many thousands who, though not provoking God by great crimes, are, to all appearance, living as if they were quite careless about


Him, and minded nothing else, so as they can have their share of the pleasures and enjoyments of the present world! But if there is another life after this-if there is a world of happiness for the righteous, and of misery for the wicked, as there certainly is, how are all they to be blamed, how are they to be pitied, who can be contented to run throngh the few years of this short life, in perfect forgetfulness of all that awaits them when this little journey shall be done! If my soul is to be cast into everlasting misery because I continue in sin, I must be more than a fool if I do continue in my sins: if it is to be received into everlasting glory, upon condition that I repent and turn to God, I must be more than a fool if I neglect to do so and if the blessing of God is only to be obtained by those who earnestly desire it and seek it, I must be more than a fool if I live in so careless and neglectful a way, as must destroy all hopes of my receiving it.

When we think how great is the happiness in store for those who love God and

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