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God can supply that loss without you, but he calls on you to be workers with him. He honours you by the call; for in so doing he calls you his stewards. Think of the pleasure you will give the Missionaries by your benevolence. They will bless God on your behalf! Think of the happiness you will enjoy, if you hear that through your means the Bible has been made known and blessed to the
Heathen sitting in darkness. They will. also join with the Missionaries in blessing God on your behalf. But, above all, think how exquisite will be your joy, if through grace, you are enabled to triumph over death, and before the throne of God meet with those who through your instrumentality have been supplied with the Word of life, and unite with them in praising and serving God! AMEN.
THE DUTY OF SEEKING THE LORD, ENFORCED FROM
HIS POWER IN THE NATURAL WORLD.
AMOS V. 8.
Seek Him that maketh the seven stars and Orion, and turneth the shadow of death into the morning, and maketh the day dark with night; that calleth for the waters of the sea, and poureth them out upon the face of the earth: The Lord is his name.
No subject of consideration is calculated so completely to humble the pride of man, as the nature of God. It has a length and a breadth, a height and a depth, which utterly exceed the utmost comprehension of the mightiest intellect. The imagination herself, with all her creative powers, and in spite of the boundless range of her excursive flights, must confess, when God is the object of con39
templation, in words used in a different connexion originally, but applicable in this,
Here forlorn and lost I tread,
With fainting steps and slow;
We may speculate on other subjects with some success, but on this, speculation is vain. It merely discovers our poverty of comprehension, and the circumscribed limits to which our reason is necessarily confined. All that we can do, and therefore all which true wisdom teaches us to do, is to restrict our inquiries concerning God within the precise bounds he himself has prescribed in his word. Our duty and our privilege are, simply to receive all that which he has revealed of himself, without attempting to penetrate into that which he has concealed. He is infinite! What then can finite minds comprehend of Him?
We have reason to thank Him that he has made so much of himself known in creation, in providence, and in the Word of his grace, as is necessary for our pre
a Goldsmith's Hermit.
sent benefit and our future happiness. But even with this revelation, we must confess with Job," Lo, these are parts of his ways; "but how little a portion is heard of Him! "but the thunder of his power who can "understand"?" "He is infinite and in
"comprehensible; our understandings and capacities are weak and shallow, and the "full discoveries of the divine glory are "reserved for the future state. Even the "thunder of his power, that is, his power"ful thunder, one of the lowest of his ways "here in our own region, we cannot under"stand. Much less can we understand the " utmost force and extent of his power, the "terrible efforts and operations of it, and particularly the power of his anger." Though we cannot understand this power, yet the effects of it are visible, and demand our attention for our own improvement.
To the adoption of this line of conduct, Amos exhorts his countrymen. From being herdsman of Tekoa", he was called to be a prophet, at a time when Israel was sunk in profligacy and ripening for ruin. He
b Job xxvi. 14.
c Henry on Job xxvi. 14.
reproves them sharply for their sins, warns them of their danger, and exhorts them to repentance. The chapter from whence our text is taken, begins with a fearful lamentation over the house of Israel, predicting their approaching end. He from this takes occasion to exhort them to seek the Lord, that they might live, and not to seek Bethel, nor enter into Gilgal, nor pass to Beersheba, that is, not to persist in the idolatries practised in those places; for these idolatries could not save them from God, whose wrath would overwhelm his enemies and annihilate all opposition. He then addresses those in Israel who turned judgment into wormwood, and left off righteousness in the earth, in the words of the text, which contains a magnificent description of Jehovah's power, as manifested in the formation and superintendance of the natural world; a power which will be displayed in punishing ungodly persons, especially those who are exalted in civil society, and abuse their stations to the purposes of ungodliness. Reminding them of this important truth, he exhorts them to seek his favour before it be too late, and by timely repentance avert his