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like a very stone; and still thou pleadest, "Oh "take away the heart of stone, and give the heart "of flesh.” Behold, I bring thee glad tidings of great joy; and I shall share thy joy, if I may but be the instrument of administering peace and comfort to thee: "Come unto me," saith Jesus, "all ye that are weary and heavy leaden, and I "will give you rest." Behold, he calleth thee : be of good courage. All who will, may come; he hath given thee the willing mind, " and will "in no wise cast thee out." He will bind up thy broken heart, and "give thee the oil of joy for mourning, and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness." Only wait his time: let him probe thy wounds to the bottom: catch not impatiently at comfort: beg for still deeper humiliation: use every means of increasing thy abhorrence of, and watchfulness against sin; and it shall not be very long before "he will shed "abroad his love in thy heart," and cause thee to "abound in hope, through the power of the
Holy Ghost." In the mean time reflect, that whilst thou art mourning on earth, heaven resounds with joyful acclamations and praises on thy account: wait then and pray, and thou shalt, ere long, rejoice and praise too, and that for
VI. But some perhaps will say, I have not this work to do now, I repented many years ago.-.
What! art thou still a sinner, and hast thou no need to repent! The true christian can indeed thankfully say, my repentance is effectually be gun: but only the saint in glory can truly say, my repentance is finished. The more a true believer knows of God and Christ, and the law and gospel; and the larger his experience is of his own depravity and the Lord's goodness; the more he hates sin, the more he recollects his former sins, the quicker sense he hath of present sinfulness, and the deeper and purer is his repentance. He rejoices in the Lord with penitent joy, and mourns for sin with sweet and joyful mourning. His humility increases his thankfulness and admiration of the love of Christ, and enhances his consolation; for it is a pleasant thing to be thankful. But if the thought that thy sins were pardoned, finished thy repentance, and dried up thy tears, thy repentance needs repenting of, and thou art awfully deceived.
Finally. My fellow christians, let us frequently renew our recollection of former sins, our selfexamination, our meditations on those subjects which first excited our abhorrence of iniquity: especially our meditations on a bleeding Saviour. Let us daily renew our acceptance of Christ in all his offices, seeking forgiveness of our daily transgressions through his blood: and exercising ourselves to keep a conscience void of offence towards
God and man. Thus, as true penitents, endeavouring to glorify God, adorn the gospel, and serve our generation; we may hope to live in comfort, die in peace, and have "an entrance "ministered to us abundantly, into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus "Christ."
CONCERNING HALLOWING THE SABBATH.
THROUGHOUT this Discourse, it hath been supposed, that there is in force a divine mandate of hallowing the sabbath, which all are bound to obey, and contract guilt by neglecting. But the change in the dispensation, since the fourth commandment was given; the alteration of the day, from the seventh to the first of the week; and the manner that alteration was introduced, have afforded some persons an occasion of arguing against the obligation: the judgments of others seem unsettled, and perplexed about it: and those who profane the sabbath, are by these things furnished with some plausible excuse, and preserved from remorse of conscience on that account. For these reasons, I judged it might be useful, to subjoin a few brief hints upon the subject.
I. It should be noticed, that the sabbath was appointed long before the ceremonial law, even from the creation of the world; and therefore cannot, in its own nature, be ceremonial.' That the words of Moses should thus be understood, Gen. ii. 1-3.
may be confirmed by the prohibition of gathering manna on the seventh day,' previous to giving any part of the law. The very language of the fourth commandment, "Remember the sabbathday to keep it holy," as well as the reason assigned in the close, evinces the same. And this is corroborated and illustrated by the general custom in many nations through nations through revolving ages, of computing time by weeks, or periodical returns of the seventh day. Of this fact no reason can be assigned so satisfactory, as supposing it to be the effect of an original institution, handed down by tradition, amongst all the descendants of Adam and Noah: which continued even after the ap pointment that gave rise to it was forgotten.*
II. The observation of the sabbath, being made a part of the Mosaick dispensation, is interwoven with the whole system. It is enjoined in the moral law of ten commandments, as delivered from Mount Sinai; introduced in the midst of their positive institutions; and enforced by temporal punishments, to be executed by civil authority. This shews its importance; and evinces that it partakes of the excellency of the moral law; forms
1 Exod. xvi.
2 The pains taken, by express edicts and by a new division of time, in a neighbouring nation, to form an exception to this rule, by men who are avowed enemies to christianity, may help to shew the force of this argument.