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makes her "beautiful for fituation, the joy of the whole earth," &c.

8thly, See when it is that a church lofes her beauty and glory, and makes defection. Why, it is when Chrift lofes his favour among her minifters and profeffors: And when this Plant of renown is rejected, God rejects that church, and gives her to the fpoil. Sirs, Chrift has been long preached in Scotland, but folk have not entertained him by faith, and therefore the Lord, at this day, is threatening to take his Christ altogether away from among us.

9thly, See hence how a perfon may know whether matters be right or wrong, whether he be thriving and profpering in grace, or if he be decaying and going backward. Why, it is ay right with the foul, in whom and with whom Chrift is in the afcendant. Is the Plant of renown rifing or going back with you? If he be rifing, then, (1.) He will be raised up in your efteem, as with David, Pfal. Ixxiii. 25. and Paul, Philip. ii. 8. 9. (2.) In your affection and love, "Whom having not feen, we love," &c. "Lord (fays Peter), thou knowest all things, thou knoweft I love thee," &c. (3.) He will be raifed up in our meditation; every thought will be a captive to his obedience, and our "meditations of him will be sweet, and our fouls satisfied as with marrow and fatnefs, when you remember him, and meditate upon him," &c. (4.) He will be raised up in your talk and walk, they will have a favour of the Plant of renown, and the chat and common talk of the world will be taftelefs, like the white of an egg, to you. But, O, a talking of Christ, and of his truths, and of the concerns of his glory, will go well down with you. (5.) He will be raised up in your religious worship, both public and private, when you go to prayer, when you go to hear the word, or when you go to a communion table, nothing will pleafe but Chrift himself. "O that I knew where I might find him. One thing have I defired, and that will I feek after," &c. (6.) He will be raised up in your wishes and endeavours for the advancement of his kingdom and glory, in as far as your power can go. And whenever his caufe comes upon the field, or the cry is made, "Who is on the Lord's fide?" You will ay ftudy, in your sphere, to take that fide where you think Chrift ftands, and contend and witness for him, his truths, his ways, and worship, according to your power, &c.

10thly, May be by way of lamentation. If Christ be the Plant of renown, raifed up by his eternal Father, may it not be for matter of lamentation that the Plant of renown is in fo

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little request among us at this day, aud that there is such a plucking away of the glory of this bleffed Plant. Some plucking away the glory of his fupreme Deity, as you were hearing, and studying to reduce him among the rank of created and dependent beings: Some plucking at his fovereignty and fupremacy, as the alone Head and King of his church; enacting laws inconfiftent with, and directly oppofite unto these laws that he has given in his word: Some plucking at the "liberty wherewith he has made his people free," by violent intrufions of minifters upon congregations, contrary to fcripture pattern, and the covenanted fworn principles of the church of Scotland, inferted in her books of difcipline.

O Sirs, if the Plant of renown were flourishing in the land, there would not be fo many unfavoury plants allowed to grow or come up in his vineyard, as there are at this day. The plant of Popifh idolatry is connived at, and on the grow ing hand, both through Scotland, England, and Ireland. The plant of prelacy, error, and fuperftition, tolerate, contrary to folemn covenant engagements, which the land lies under; the plant of unfound profeffors of divinity, poisoning our fountains of learning, and feminaries for the holy ministry; the plant of lax erroneous minifters and preachers, are growing up apace, and filling the land every day. The plant of old malignancy against the power of religion and a covenanted reformation is growing up, especially among a fet of pretended Prefbyterians, falfely fo called. The plant of profanity is flourishing apace, men abandoning themfelves unto wickednefs, and giving themselves loofe reins in drinking, fwearing, rioting, whoredom, drunkenness, Sabbath-breaking, and all manner of abominations, burlesquing the fcriptures, ridiculing the worship of God, and breaking their profane jefts upon the facred things of God. The plant of ecclefiaftical tyranny, which feemed to be nipt a little thefe two years bygone, is fprouting again as fast as ever, notwithstanding the great cries of a pretended reformation that we heard among a great many minifters and profeffors in the established church; witness the proceedings of the lafl Affembly, in the cafe of Dennie and Traquair, and the entertainment of the petition of the parish of Stow. I fay, all thefe, and many other things that night be infifted upon, evidently declare that the Plant of renown is not raifed up among us, but rather that his flavour and favour is gone away, in a great measure, from amongst magiftrates and minifters, from judicatories and affemblies for worship, and from among the generality of profeflors and inhabitants of the land. Yea, many come that length, that,

like the Gadarenes, they would be well content that Chrift were quite departed out of our coafts, that they might with freedom enjoy their swinish lufts; and indeed he seems to be taking his leave of us. But O, what will follow upon his departure? "Wo, wo, alfo unto them, when I depart from them." See what comes of the vineyard of the Lord of hofts, If. v. from the beginning, when he departs he takes away the hedge, &c.

11thly, Is in a word of exhortation. Is it fo that Chrift is a Plant of renown raised up by JEHOVAH? Then let all that bear the name of Chrift, especially you who have been entertained at his table, and tafted of his special love and goodness, study to answer God's defign, in raifing up for us this Plant of renown.

Take this in the following particulars, with which I conclude. (1.) Sit down, and reft your weary fouls, under the fhadow of this renowned Plant, after the example of the fpoufe, Cant. ii. "I fat down under his shadow with great delight." When you find no reft in the world, by reafon of temptations, afflictions, and the working of indwelling corruption, and when you are crying, "O tell me where he maketh his flocks to reft," let your recourfe be ay to the Plant of renown, for to him "fhall the Gentiles feek, and his reft shall be glorious." (2.) I invite you to come and behold the glory and beauty of the Plant of renown: "O look unto him, and be faved, all ye ends of the earth." God the Father thinks fo meikle of this Plant of his own raising, that he invites the whole world to behold him as the delight of his very foul, If. xlii. 1. "Behold my Servant whom I uphold, mine Elect in whom my foul delighteth." It is by beholding of his glory, that the work of fanctification, and conformity to the divine image, and the life of religion is maintained and kept up, 2 Cor. iv. laft. "All we beholding, as in a glass, the glory of the Lord, are changed into the fame image. (3.) Comé and feed upon the fruit of this Plant of renown; "For his flesh is meat indeed, and his blood is drink indeed." You have been at his table, and perhaps got a meal there, but, Sirs, you would be continually feeding upon him. You fee, in the clofe of the verfe, this Plant is raised up to be food to the hungry; "I will raife him up for them, and they fhall hunger no more," or be confumed with hunger no more; and therefore be ay feeding upon his fruits, for they "sweet to the taste, and make the lips of them that are afleep, to speak, like the best wine that goeth down sweetly,' &c. (4.) Whenever you find yourfelves wounded by temptation, or corruption, or the world, come to the Plant of re



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nown for healing, for his "leaves are for the healing of the nations." You have a sweet promise to this purpose, Mal. iv. 2. "To you that fear my name hall the Sun of righteoufnefs arife with healing in his wings; and ye fhall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall," &c. (5.) Let me exhort you, in your fphere, minifters and private Chriftians, and I would fain take home the exhortation to myfelf. O let us all join iffue with the Father of Chrift, in ftudying to raife up this Plant of renown, and to make him more and more renowned, this will be the ambition, and resolution, and endeavour, of all that know him. Pfal. xlv. at the clofe, fays the church there, "I will make thy name to be remembered in all generations, therefore fhall the people praife thee, O Lord, for ever and ever." Let us (that are minifters) preach and proclaim his righteousness and renown, and the glory of his perfon, in the great congregation. And you (that are the people) O ftudy to commend him by your walk and talk, and the holiness of your converfation, upon all occafions; and, when his caufe and intereft in the land is in fuch a finking condition, let us take a lift of it. Let us lie at a throne of grace, pleading, that he would not forfake the land; but that he would yet return, and be "the glory in the midst of us," Zech. ii. 5.


Is. lx. 8.-Who are thefe that fly as a cloud, and as doves to their windows?



N the laft verfe of the preceding chapter, God had made a promife of the continuance of the church upon earth to the uttermoft ages of time: "As for me, this is my covenant," &c. Here, in the beginning of this chapter, we have a promise concerning the enlargement of the church under the New Testament, unto the uttermost ends of the earth: Ver. 3. 4. "And the Gentiles fhall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rifing. Lift up thine eyes round about, and fee; all they gather themselves together,


they come to thee, thy fons fhall come from far, and thy daughters fhall be nurfed at thy fide." We are likewife told, how the church fhall be affected with this increase of her num bers and enlargement of her borders. (1.) She will be in a tranfport of joy upon this account; ver. 5. "Thou shalt fee and flow together," &c. (2.) There will be a mixture of fear with this joy; "Thine heart fhall fear," as though it were a thing unlawful to join with the Gentiles, &c. (3.) She fhall be enlarged with love, fo as to leave room for all the Gentile converts. (4.) She fhall be ftruck with furprise and wonder, faying, Who are thefe that fly? &c.

Where four things are confiderable. 1. We have a sweet fight that the Old Testament church gets of the ftate of matters under the New Teftament, upon the revelation of Christ in the gospel among the Gentiles. Why, fhe fees poor fouls upon the wing, in great multitudes, flying to a Saviour; and a fweeter fight cannot be feen upon earth, &c. 2. Notice the manner of their flight; they fly as a cloud, and as doves : Of which more particularly afterward, when we come to prosecute the doctrine. 3. Notice the term or object of their flight; they fly to the windows for their relief. Like the windows of the ark of Noah, whereat the dove entered, when fhe could find no place for the fole of her foot, because of the deluge. 4. Notice the pleasant surprise that the prophet or the Old Teftament church is put into at this fight. This is implied in the manner of the fpeech, (Who are thefe?) She is ftriken with a pleasant aftonishment, to fee the finners of Gentiles, aliens to the commonwealth of Ifrael, ftrangers to the covenant of promife," flocking in to Chrift; Chrift preached unto the Gentiles, and the Gentiles believing in Chrift, being a branch of the great mystery of godlinefs, 1 Tim. iii,


and last.

Ors. That the flight of finners to a Saviour is a sweet and furprising fight. Who are thefe that fly as a cloud? &c. The method, through divine affiftance fhall be,

I. To fpeak a little of this flight of the finner to Chrift, and fhew what it imports.

II. I would fpeak a little of the manner of their flight: They fly as a cloud, and as doves. What may be couched in thefe metaphors.

III. Speak a little of thefe windows to which they fly.
IV. Shew that this is a sweet and surprising fight.
V. Apply the whole,

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