Page images

the Weight of Affliction; and faint in a SERM. Day of Trial, is, because we depend too 1. much on ourselves, and too little on God; and, therefore, it is just in God to blast our Designs, to defeat our most subtly contrived Projects, and to make Ule of the weak Things of this World, to confound the Mighty. The Almighty takes Pleasure in Thewing how weak Man's Strength is, taking them in the Snares which they themselves have laid ; and making these Achitophels the Occasion of their own Ruin and Downfal. And, therefore, if we would have whatsoever we do to prosper, let us be sure to make Use of such Means as are just and lawful, and, having placed our Trust and Confidence in God, to resign up our Wills to God's Divine Will, and leave the Success to his wise Disposal.

4. FROM what has been said, we may in- . fer, how happy that Man is, who has led a holy and religious Life. Such an one has a God to trust to, on all Occasions no Calamity can happen to him against which he is not prepared; no Affliction which he is not able to undergo ; come Life, come Death, all is alike to him; he can say with Yob, Though he say me, yet Job xiii, will I trust in him; and with David, 115.


C 4


Serm. will not be afraid of ten Thousands of the Peo-
I. ple

, who have set themselves against me

round about. In a Time of public CaPía. iii. 6.

lamity, when Dread and Destruction seize
on the Minds and Spirits of Men, he is
then Master of himself, and, having built
his Truft on this Rock of Ages, he lives
secure; though the State in which he lives
suffer Convulsions, and the People rage
and imagine a vain Thing. When the
greatest of all Troubles seize him, a
wounded Spirit, or a misgiving Confi-
dence, he can rest himself on that Corner-
jtone, his blessed Saviour, and plead the
Merits and Sufferings of the crucified
Hefus. Even in his last Hour, when
Death shews himself to be the King of
"Terrors, and sets all his Forces in Array
against him ; when his Mind is filled with
Horror and Dismay, when the Wicked
thall call for Mountains to fall on them,
and conceal them from the Anger of an
offended Judge ; then will the Soul of e-
very good Man be filled with Comfort
and Self-complacency; it will be the
greatest Pleasure and Satisfaction to him,
to consider, that he has made his Peace
with God, and got an Interest in the Me-
rits of his crucified Saviour ; that the Sting
of Death is taken away, and that, from


henceforth, he shall enjoy a Crown of Serm. Glory. It is not to be imagined what I. Comfort a good Conscience will then bring him ; it was always a continual Feast to him in his Life-time, and will be much more so at the Hour of his Death : But it is far otherwise with the wicked and ungodly Person, such an one has nothing to support him in a Day of Affliction ; and, therefore, his Condition must needs be extremely miserable, who has so many Things to fear, and nothing to comfort him. And, let me intreat and beseech every one, who hears me this Day, to consider, that there will shortly come a Time, and we know not how foon, when we must resign up our Breath to him that gave it; and then, of all that Time which we now so prodigally lavilh away, and are at a Loss how to spend, none of it will bring us any Satisfaction, but those Moments which we have spent in the Duties of Religion, in the Business of our lawful Callings, and in Acts of Charity to our Neighbour ; in informing the Ignorant, and reproving the Sinner, visiting the Sick, binding up the Broken-hearted, and administring to all the spiritual and temporal Wants of


SERM. our indigent Brother : Nothing will bring I. us any Comfort, but that we have led

sober, honest, and devout Lives; that we have feared the Lord, and obeyed the Voice of bis Servant ; and, therefore, have good Reason to trust in the Lord, and to stay ourselves upon our God. Which that we may all of us do, God of his Mercy grant, for Jesus Christ his Sake,



The Progress of Virtue and Holi


2 PET. iii. 18. But grow in Grace.

[ocr errors]


T is a very dangerous and fatal Mil-Serm.
take which the Professors of Chrif-
tianity are too frequently guilty of, to

fancy that they have done sufficient to obtain Heaven and eternal Happiness, when they have made only fome Approaches towards a holy and virtuous Life, and to sit down satisfied with a partial Reformation.' 'If they have left off fome notorious Vices (though, perhaps, they have only exchanged them for worse, and more agreeable to their present Age and Consti

tution ;)

« PreviousContinue »