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example of forbearance has he religion, and even the salvation left us! One character reclaimed of men, may be affected by the is of greater account and more purity and harmony of Christian to the honour of a Christian churches, we should tremble at church, than many discarded. the idea of their being interrupta
Finally, A watchful eye upon ed by us. The planting of a the state of the church, and of church in å neighbourhood particular members, with a sea- where the gospel is preached, sonable interposition, may do and the ordinances of Christ admore towards the preservation of ministered in their purity, is a good order than all other things great blessing. It is a temple put together. Discourage whis reared for God, in which he perings, backbitings, and jealou- deigns to record his name, to sies. Prown on tale bearers, and meet with his humble worshipgive no car to their tales. Nip pers, and to bless them.
We contentions in the bud. Adjust have seen churches of this dedifferences in civil matters among scription, in the midst of a career yourselves. Bring together at of spiritual prosperity, edifyong at an early period those in whom one another in love, and gathermisconception and distrust have ing souls to the Redeemer's stanbegun to operate, ere ill opinion dard, all, in a little time, blasted ripen into settled dislike. By a and ruined by some unhappy frank and timely explanation in event that has thrown them into the
presence of a common friend, disorder. One of the members, that may be healed in an hour, it may be, has acted unworthily which if permitted to proceed, a-he is reproved-his relations series of years cannot eradicate. or particular acquaintances take Be affectionately free with one on his side-discipline is interanother. Give tender and faith- rupted--the church is divided ful hints where it appears to you into parties--hard things are said that one of your brethren is in on both sides--the bond of love danger of being drawn aside from is broken-tender minds the principles or spirit of the grieved, and retire-worship is gospel. Let all be given, from but thinly attended, and the entheir first entering into connec-joyment of it is vanished-God's tion with you, to expect them. friends mourn in secret, and his If any one take offence at such enemies triumph, saying • Aha! treatment, give him to under- so would we have it!' Truly it is stand that he who cannot endure a serious thing to occasion the a caution or a reproof, is untit ruin of a church of Christ! “ If for Christian society; and is in any man defile the temple of the utmost danger of falling into God, him shall God destroy!” mischief. The free circulation of the
SALVATION blood, and the proper discharge of all the animal functions, are BY CHRIST ALONE. not more necessary to the health
What is all righteousness that men devise ? of the body, than good discipline What, but a sordid bargain for the skies? is to the prosperity of a commu
As stoop from heaven to sell the proud a thronç. nity.
Cow PER. If it were duly considered how
A FRIEND who is much conmuch the general interests of cerned for the spiritual good of
And Christ as soon will abdicate his own,
his fellow-creatures, lately men-pect by lifting up your hand, to tioned the name of a poor woman reach and grasp the stars of heawho was much afflicted, and wish- ven, as to enjoy the mansions of ed me to call on her. I embraced glory by your own exertions. If the earliest opportunity of attend. ever you are saved, it must be ing to his request, and found her most entirely by the rich grace of very unwell, apparently in a con. God in Christ Jesus. There is sumption. After learning, with no other name given under hea. much pleasure, that though she ven whereby a sinner can be was poor,
she did not really want saved. Nor is it in any way posfor any thing that was suitable to sible for you to escape utter ruin her circumstances, I made it my if you neglect this great salvaprincipal object to ascertain the tion." state of her soul. I asked her, I endeavoured to show her in whether she supposed that she the plainest and most familiar should recover from heraffliction? manner, the only way in which a She told me, that she often feared sinner could be just with God; she should not. I then said, “As intreated her carefully to peruse you apprehend that you are short the Holy Scriptures ; and I esly to enter eternity, and to appear pecially besought her to lift up before God, are you ready for so her heart without delay to a great a change, for so important throne of grace. I assured her, a summons ? Have you a good that there was a certainty that hope, that you shall meet the God heard and answered prayer, coming Judge with joy ?" presented through our divine Re.
She replied, “Though I have deemer, and in reliance on his certainly been a sinner, yet I have merits; and that he could effecnot been so bad as others, and I tually enlighten, pardon, justify, have been constantly endeavour- and save even “ the chief of sining to make
with God." ners.” " Alas!” said I, “if your peace How awful is the consideration, be not already made by him who how should it awaken our pity died for poor sinners, it can never and our zeal, that there are mulbe made. Though you may not titudes in our Protestant country have gone so far in sin as some of where the light of divine truth your neighbours, yet, as a single shines in all its native glory, who dose of poison will effectually kill are relying for eternal felicity on the body, so one unpardoved sin a foundation, which, in innumer. will as certainly and completely able instances, has been found ruin the soul. The wages of one insufficient to support the hunian sin is death, and if you receive mind; and which in the last sad them you are ruined, you perish. moment of extremity has often There never was, or can be, more left its possessor than one available sacrifice for sin, and that was long since offered on
Without one cheerful beam of hope,
Or spark of glimni’ring day; Mount Calvary. If you have no interest in the atonement of the Son so that, like the foolish builder of God, you must be lost eternal- mentioned by our Lord in the ly. Sin is so horrible, and of so Gospel, he has found himself, deep a stain, that it can never be when there was no remedy, com. removed but by the blood of Je- pletely and everlastingly undone. sus. You may as reasonably ex- “ Other foundations can no mau
lay than that which is laid, Christ of it, and who were amply able to Jesus."
work out their own salvation ? InIf any human being could save deed, the popish doctrine, which himself partially or entirely, then too many professed Protestants there would be no truth in a mul- eagerly cherish and defend, of titude of passages of Holy Scrip- salvation by human merit, utterly ture, which affirm, that salvation subverts the whole of Christianity, is solely to be attributed to the and represents Christ as having rich, free, and sovereign grace of died on the cross for no important God.* The assertion of the apos- or desirable purpose. “If,” as tle would be totally false, “ Not,” the apostle strikingly and justly says he, "of works, lest any man argues, "righteousness come by should boast.”
the works of the law, then is The merit and sufficiency of Christ dead in vain."* the creature to gain salvation, is “ Whosoever will consider," manifestly inconsistent with the says an excellent writer, “ the nadivine perfections as they are re- ture of God, and the relation of vealed in the Gospel. Salvation a creature, cannot with reason is represented as a glorious dis- think that eternal life was of itself play of the incomparable wisdom due from God as a recompense of Jehovah ;t but where is his to Adam, had he persisted in a wisdom in devising a scheme of state of innocence; who can think deliverance for ruined sinners, so great a reward due for having and accomplishing the mighty performed that which a creature work by the ignominious suffer in that relation was obliged to do? ings and death of his beloved Son, Can any man think another obligif men could have effected it by ed to convey an inheritance of a their own ability ? It is said to be thousand pounds a year upon his a striking illustration of the jus- payment of a few farthings ?+ tice of God; but where is the How ignorant, self-sufficient, justice of the Deity, in accepting and presumptuous, is the language as sufficient (which he must do if of the poor sinner, who talks of the creature be saved by bis own paying the incalculable sum he is merits) an imperfect righteous- indebted to divine justice! How ness, for the best human righte- much more rational and scriptuousness is, without controversy, ral is the sentiment of one of our imperfect, in place of the infinitely sweetest poets, perfect righteousness of the Son Pay !-follow Christ, and all is paid, of God? The sacred writers af. His death your peace ensures ; firm, that redemption is an amaz- Think of the grave where he was laid,
And calm descend to yours.” ing proof of the matchless love of the great Parent of the universe ;ç but where, or how does
THE HOLINESS his love appear on the ground of human worthiness, but as affording aid to those who had no need
Such as Rom. iv. 4, 16. Ephes. ii. HOLINESS consists in a sepa8. 9. 2 Tim. i. 9. Rom. xi. 6. Jer, ration from sin, devotedness to xxxi. 3. Isa. lv. 1,2, 3. Rev. xxii. 17. 2 Cor. v. 21. Gal. ii. 13. Rom. ix. 15, God, conformity to his will, and 16. viii. 30. Acts, xiii. 4, 8. and a multiLude of other passages.
* Gal. ij. 21, + Eph. iii. 10. Rom. iii. 25, 26. + Charnock's Works, vol. iii. p. 6. 8vo. $ John, iii, 16. 1 John, iv, 10. edit,
a readiness to obey his com- | God, and is intended by him to mands. Whatever view we take restore our fallen nature to his of the Christian religion, we must divine image, must be holy. "Be have a forcible conviction of its ye holy; for I am holy.” 1 Peter, holy nature and tendency. God | i. 16. Neither time, nor alteraiş holy. The infinite excellen- tion of circumstances, can weaken cies of his moral perfections can the force of this command. It not be comprehended by finite must be equally binding on us minds. The seraphim, con- Christians, as it was to the Israelscious of their imperfection, if ites to whom it was first given; compared with him, veil their yea, the force of it may be said faces with their wings, while to be greater to us than it was to they celebrate his praises. Isaiah, them, in proportion to the degree vi. 3.
“ He is glorious in holi- in which the holiness of God is ness."
His righteousness, faith more illustriously displayed un. fulness, justice, goodness, and der the present, than it was under love, reflect a lustre upon all the the former dispensation. contriyances of his consummate Without holiness we can neiwisdom, and the operations of ther walk with God, nor hold his almighty power; but it is in communion with him. We should the death of his beloved Son, for be followers, “ imitators," of the redemption of mankind, in God, as dear children. Religion, which we behold the most asto- considered in its relation to God, nishing display of his hatred to is not a transient impression upon sin, and love of justice; in union the human mind, but an abiding with the exercise of such pity principle of devotion. and compassion, as could only The life and cbaracter of our proceed from a mind of infinite Lord Jesus Christ exhibit to our rectitude and benevolence. Ho view the holiness and purity of liness in God is the lustre and Christianity. “He did no sin, glory of all his attributes. “ He neither was guile found in bis is the Rock, his work is perfect : mouth.” 1 Peter, ii. 22. He for all his ways are judgment: a sought the glory of his heavenly God of truth, and without ini- Father with holy zeal and with quity, just and right is he." unabating ardour. He went Deut. xxxii. 4. In his government about doing good to the bodies of the world there are many and souls of men.
His whole things which we cannot com- conduct manifests the truth of prehend; yet, when his dealings Heb. vii. 26: “ He was holy, with mankind in general, and harmless, undefiled, and separate with every individual in particu- from sinners.” Love to perishing lar, shall be made, known at the men, and resignation to the Dilast great day, bis mercy in their vine will, appeared in every action
salvation, or his justice in their of his life. • condemnation, will be universally As his disciples, it is our duty
acknowledged. Whether he par- to copy his example, and to ex. don or punish, -his holiness will emplify in our walk that purity shine with distinguished bright- which shone so conspicuously in ness, and the whole rational him. “ He that saith he abideth creation will confess the equity in him, ought himself also so of bis procedure.
to walk, even
as be walked," The religion which comes from (1 John, ii. 6,) in an habitual
course of devotedness to God; and purity, and aim to discharge seeking his glory, in connection the obligations it involves, by a with the good of mankind. Love life of persevering obedience to ought to be the predominant God. principle of the mind. If we If we contemplate religion as feel the passions of hatred, envy, the effect of Divine influence or revenge, opposing in us the upon the minds of men, we shall benevolence of the gospel, we have an additional evidence of should look to him who, while its holy nature and tendency. he made atonement for the sins Cbristians are a holy nation; set of his people by the death of the apart by God the Father in etercross, prayed for his very mur-nal and personal election to holiderers. We should frequently ness, as the means of happiness; reflect upon this most stupen- to be sanctified by the blood and dous act of mercy, and pray that sacrifice of Jesus Christ, and to the same mind may be in us have principles of holiness imwhich was in him; the same planted in them by the eternal meek, gentle, loving, and lowly Spirit, that thereby they might be mind; so should we be able to enabled to live unto God, bear persist in doing good, although his image, and promote his glory. we might, on that account, be The genuine effects of the love exercised with the contempt of of God shed abroad in the hearts evil. men. Remembering him of his people, must be hatred to who bore such contradiction and sin, as that abominable thing opposition from sinners, we which God's righteous soul hateth. should neither faint nor be weary Sin bas brought disorder into the in our minds. To render good moral government of the world, for evil is the very genius of the is infinitely opposite to the Digospel, and will best adorn its vine will, and has exposed the doctrines and its precepts. To noblest part of this lower creation be called by the name of Christ, to everlasting death: its numerand not to be holy, is a contra- ous and awful consequences are diction of a very serious and aw- seen in every direction. The ful nature. « Without holiness word of God, the history of the no man shall see the Lord.” world, and an acquaintance with Everlasting destruction of both our own hearts, will abundantly soul and body in hell, will be the convince us of what sin has done; portion of all those who live and but in proportion as we are condie destitute of the principles of vinced of the malignity of sin we holiness. For what reason were shall hate it, and desire to be the followers of ancient heathen made holy. By divine influence philosophers called by the names we are created anew in Christ of their respective leaders, but Jesus; holiness becomes our because they espoused their doc- element and our happiness. A trines, attended to their precepts, sense of the mercy of God maand acted according to their nifested in our redemption by maxims. For the same reasons the blood of the cross, must fill the followers of Jesus Christ were our minds with gratitude, and a first called Christians ; a name conviction of the love of Christ which in itself is expressive of will constrain us to walk in all holiness. As bearing this name holy obedience to the commands we should consider its dignity of God. All the doctrines,