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mount Nebo, and die in the mount whither thou goest up. The summons found him, aged indeed, and, “like a shock of corn, ripe in its season ; but still as strong to labour as in any period of his life. He was an hundred and twenty years old when he died : yet his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated. Life therefore, must have been dear to the man of God, when he was called to lay it down, and give an account of that stewardship which he might no longer execute. But Moses was meek above all men. His soul was like a weaned child. His own desires and affections are subdued to the pleasure of his God, and he utters only one language; It is the Lord, let him do what seemeth him good.
Mark here the influence of true religion ; and bless the God of all grace for such an example of its power. Come when he may, the onset of the last enemy is formidable; and few are so bereft of all ties to life, as not to desire its delay.
But while the Christian, like Moses, may petition for lengthened days, if they consist with the purposes of heaven, he will make the request with entire deference to the infinite wisdom and goodness on which he relies ; Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me, nevertheless, not as I will but as thou wilt. We are making the voyage of life, like passengers in a ship. Sleeping or waking, they are proceeding towards their destined port; and will soon reach it, whether they shall have crossed a calm, or a stormy ocean. If God have been the companion of our way, the cross our guiding star, the word of life our chart, the promises of salvation our compass, the love of Christ our constraining impulse, we may well become resigned, should the haven where we would be, open upon us a little before we expected. Or, if the pale horse be sent to bring us to our Father's house, we may surely be submissive, if we be not glad, when he appears. If the earthly tabernacle must be dissolved, in order that “we may have a building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens," we need not shrink, if the signal for its bei ng unclosed for our removal, be given rather unawares. The zealous servant of his God and Saviour will be occupied in his post of duty, committing the period of his removal to the
appointment of that providence which allows not a hair of his head to fall unnoticed to the ground. Death may come with an array of suddenness, but unprovided it will not reach him. Let not him who runs the Christian race, with the love of God in his heart, and the glory of heaven in his eye, shrink from reaching the goal too
Let not him whom the hand of redeeming love has enclosed within the ark of Christ's salvation, dread the hour when it shall cease from its tossing and conflict with the waters,when that same hand shall be put forth to open the door, and place the delivered soul upon the summit of the everlasting hills, where not a wave shall agitate it more for ever. The dread of death too frequently arises from the wretched ambition of having our portion in this lifefrom an undue estimate of this world's good; and an estimate of the eternal world, proportionably mean and unworthy. Our fancy is so much thronged with delusive images of bodily enjoyment and earthly hope, that we imagine the present scene of things the most important by which we can be engaged. The glories of the future state-the vast felicities of the Zion above—the society, the pursuits, the blessedness of the redeemed, and sanctified children of the Son of God-converse with him, and the unclouded vision of his Father in the world of light and love are thus hidden from our minds : we shrink from death, as the worst enemy by whom we can be surprised. Be ye, however, ready : for in such an hour as ye think not, the Son of man cometh. Do ye not hear his voice in age, weakness, and sickness? Doth he not say,
scripturally remove the fear of death, and enable you to give in your answer of submission, willingness, and even joyful desire, “ Amen, even so, come Lord Jesus."
“Give not sleep to your eyes, nor slumber to your eyelids," until you have looked for the mercy of the Redeemer unto eternal life. So that, in an acquaintance with the renewing and sanctifying power of his gospel, each of you, as death approaches, may place himself cheerfully at his Father's disposal, and say, Into thy hands I commit my spirit : thou hast redeemed me, O Lord God of truth. Then, and not till then, may you hope, as friends surround your dying bed, and, with the solicitude of Christian love, inquire how you fare, to answer with a servant of God in the like extremity, “ Almost well.” 1
II. If it be asked, whence especially proceeded the resignation of Moses ? the answer is nigh at hand. HE DIED IN THE VIGOROUS EXERCISE OF FAITH AND Hope.
He was the child of faith, and to the trust of his parents in the power and love of the God of Israel did he owe the preservation of his life. That life, with one only exception, was a life of uninterrupted and implicit faith. Impelled by this blessed principle, when he was come to
years, he refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter, and renounced all pretensions to a throne which that title might have offered to his ambition. “By faith he chose rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season : esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward.” Even when he had chosen his portion with the despised heritage, he reserved nothing for himself—no inheritance for his family-no distinction for his posterity-no wealthy lot in the land that flowed with milk and honey. He devoted his posterity to the service of God to the duties of the altar -to the work of the sanctuary, as their best possession. His last earthly duty is an act of faith; and also an enjoyment of the privilege of faith. At the command of God he ascended to the top of Pisgah, and beheld the glories of Canaan outstretched in magnificent prospect before him. Into this temporal rest he was not permitted to enter : but he received and embraced the promise of an eternal rest, of which Canaan was only the typeeven of that rest that remaineth for the people of God. He was not to tread the plains of Canaan, nor to ascend into its hills, and towers, and palaces: but they prefigured to the purified and gifted eye of faith,