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of him who wrote. Let me conclude the present, with calling on every one present, to recollect personal obligation:), and to walk suitably to them. Call to remembrance vows formed on a bed of languishmg, in the hour of difficulty, in the instant of danger, at the table of the Lord: and thankfully pay them: as knowmg thai " it is better not to vow, than to vow and not to pay."
Desire more earnestly the best gifts; spiritual, heavenly, eternal blessings. By all means, in your vows, stipulate for your portion of present and temporal good things, saying with Jacob, " If God will be with me, aud keep me in this way that I go, and will give me blead to eat, and raimaut to put on, so that I c•<me again to my lather's house in peace, then shall the Lord be my God;" Gen. xxviii. 20, 21 ....and with Hannah, pouring out the bitterness of an oppressed heart before God, and begging relief of the Father of mercies, saving, " O Lord of Hosts, if, thou wilt mdeed look on the affliction, of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not (brget thine handmaid." But forget not withal, to stipulate, with Solomon " for an understanding heart," to prize aud to improve mercies already bestowed; and with Jabez, calling on the God of Israel, saying, "Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed....and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil that it may uot grieve me."
Hannah promised to devote to the Lord the child which should be given her; and ye have solemnly engaged to yield yourselves unto God; and "ye are not your own, for ye are bought with a price." "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a livmg sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect willof God," Rom.xii. 1, 2.
HISTORY OF HANNAH,
THE MOTHER OF SAMUEL.
And Hannah prayed, and said, my heart rejoiceth in the Lord: mine horn is exalted in the Lord, my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies: because I rejoie in thy salvation. There is none holy as t/ie Lord: for there is none beside thee: neither is there any rod like our' God Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth : for the Lord is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed. The boies of the mighty men are broken, and they that stumbled are girded with strength. They that tvere Jutl have hired out them selves for bread; and they that were hungry ciased; so that the barren hath borne seven: and she that hath many children is waxed jeeble 7he Lord killeth, and maketh alive: he bringeth down to the grave, and bringeth up. The Lord maketh poor, and maketh rich: he brinseth low, and lifteth up. He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory : for the pillars oj the earth are the Lord's, and he hath set the world upon them. He will keep the feet of his saints, and the wicked shall be silent in darkness :for by strength shall no man prevail. The adversaries of the Lord shall be broken to pieces: out of heaven shall he thunder upon them: the Lord shall judge the ends of the earth; and he shall give strength unto his king, and exalt the horn of his anointed....1 SaMuel ii. 1 —10.
IN man, the master-piece of creation, are discernible various kinds of life, distinct from each o; her, yet most wonderfully blended and united, so as to form one great and astonishing whole. The animal, the intellectual, the moral life: to which we add, in man as he came from the hands of his Creator, and in man " renewed" by grace " in the spirit of his mmd," the spiritual and divine life, the dawnmg light, the earnest and pledge, the celestial foretaste of everlasting life.
The first of these we enjoy in common with the beasts that perish. Like theirs, our bodies grow and decline. Like them we are led by sense and appetite, and are susceptible of pleasure and pain. And, like tiiem, we arose out of the earth, are supported by it, and ieel ourselves returning to it again.
The second, or intellectual life, raises man far above every other animal. He possesses the power of thought, that productive faculty of the Almighty; that image of G >d m our nature. He contemplates, compares, reflects, reasons, plans, pertorms.
By means of this he exercises dominion overall other creatures. Inferior to many, in some respects, by tins he renders himself superior to all; and reduces all their powers to the subjection and obedience of himself.
Tne moral life places man in society; connects him w^th intelligent beings like himself; opens a capacious ti 'ld of duty and of enjoyment; stamps him an object of approbation or blame; of reward or punishment.
The divine life unites man to the Author and supporter of his existence, the source of all his comforts, the foundation of all his hopes; the witness and the judge ot all his actions; the avenger of all unrighteousness, " the rewarder of them who diligently seek him."
To Atlam, as an animal, God said, be" fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth: behold I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth ; and every tree in the which is the fruit of
a tree, yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat."
la Adam the intellectual life discovered itself, when the Lord God brought unto him " every beast of the fidd, and every fowl of the air, to see what he would call them; and whatsoever Adam called every living" creature, that was the name thereof."
... .God havmg implanted a principle of moral life in man, said, " It is not good that the man should be alone; 1 will make him an help meet for him;" he took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden, to dress it and to keep it; and commanded t he man, saying, " Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it. For in the day that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt'surely die."
In Adam the spiritual and divine life was perfected, when " God created man in his own image." It was extinguished and lost when by transgression he fell ; it was revived by the promise of the Messiah and salvation through his blood; and it will be completely recovered when the image of God is restored through ther spirit of sanctiticatiou.
All these different kmds of lile have their several ai;d corresponding expressions; and accordmg as any one prevails, such is the chaiacter of the man. When the habitual cry is, " What shall I eat, what shall I drink, and wherewithal shall I be cloathed f" it is easy to determine what life is predommant: it is easy to discern when the brute runs away with the man. Solomon may be given as an instance of the prevalence of intellectual life. He looked through nature, and " spake of trees, from the cedar-tree that is in Lebanon, even unto the hyssop that springeth out of the wall; be spake also of beasts, and of fowls, and of creeping things, and of fishes." "His wisdom excelled the wisdom of all the children of the east country, and all the wisdom of Egypt." The psalmist has presented us
I with an exquisite representation of the moral life of man, (would to God it were more frequently realized) in the fifteenth psalm; " He that walk* th uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart. He that backbiteth not with his tongue, nor doeth evil to his neighbor, nor taketh up a reproach agamst his neighbor; in whose eyes a vile person is contemned : but he honoreth them that fear the Lord: he that sweareth to his own hurt, and changeth not. He that putteth not out his money to usery, nor taketh reward against the innocent. He that doeth these things shall never be moved," Ver. ii....5. Where shall we look for an example of the highest life of man, the life of God in the suiil? Nature stands silent, the whole world lies dead; it presents every kind of life but this. Where is the model to which to refer? Where is the idea of this most exalted excellence ot our nature i It is to be found. I " came not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me." "I seek not mine own glory, but the glory of him who sent me." Read and ponder the seventeenth chapter of John's gospel, and discover the author, the example, the giver of this divine lite; and aspire after a participation of .
We have some of these holy aspirations m the passage now read. We behold a spirit alive unto God; sinking t tie creature in the Creator; discerning God in every object, and m every event that arises; referring all things to Him "who doth according to his wiil in the armies of heaven, and among the mhabitants of the earth." Let us blend onr spirits, with that of pious Hannah, and may God grant us to know and feel the happiness of havmg fellowship with the Father, and with lus son Jesus Christ.
Hannah prated." "In affliction she prayed : atl'' in prosperity she prayed. Tears and smiles are not more the expression of their corresponding emotions, than supplication and thanksgivmg are of that life which nictates them, in a suitableness to the various aspects of
v Ol. in. 3 E