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wild beasts: but wild beasts in chains, conducted whither, an almighty arm pleaseth to lead them. The power of this arm is a hook in the noses of these animals, a bridle in their lips ; it turneth them by the hook to the right or to the left, and it straighteneth or looseneth the bridle as it pleaseth. By this hook, by this bridle, God led the Assyrian beast without his knowing it, and when his heart did not think so : he led him from Assyria to Judea, from Judea to Assyria, and his wisdom required his presence in either place. The prophets meant to inspire us with the same notion of insensible and inanimate beings, so that every thing which excites fear might lead us to fear the King of nations, who hath all things in his power, and moves all according to his own pleasure. We will not multiply proofs. The prophet, in the chapter out of which we have taken the text, mentions an object very fit to inspire us with the fear of the King of nations, who disposeth inanimate beings in such a manner: he describeth a tempest at sea. The gravity of this discourse, the majesty of this place, and the character of this auditory will not allow those descriptions which a sportive fancy invents. We allow students to exercise their imaginations in an academy, and we pass over their glaring images in favor of their youth and inexperience: but sometimes descriptions supply the place of arguments, and a solid logic, not a puerile rhetoric requires them. We are now in this case. In order to humble man in the presence of the Kin of nations, we tell him, this King can make all creatures fulfil his will. With the same design, our prophet gives a sensible example of the power of God, by transporting man to the ocean, and by shewing him the works of the Lord and his wonders in the deep, Psal. cvii. 24. God uttereth his voice, saith he, in a verse that follows the text, and there , is a noise of a multitude of waters in the heavens. He causeth the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth. He maketh lightnings with rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of his treasures, ver. 13. Thou dull stupid man who art not stricken with the idea of a God, whose will is self-efficient, and who alone can act immediately on an immaterial soul, come and behold some sensible proofs of that infinite power, of which metaphysical proofs can give thee no idea! And thou, proud insolent man go aboard the best-built vessel, put out to sea, set the most vigilant watch, surround thyself with the most formidable instruments; what art thou, when God uttereth his voice P What art thou, when the noise resounds? What art thou, when torrents of rain seem to threaten a second deluge, and to make the globe which thou inhabitest one rolling sea? What art thou, when lightnings emit their terrible flashes? What art thou, when the winds come roaring out of their treasures 2 What art thou then * Verily, thou art no less than thou wast in thy palace. Thou art no less than when thou wast sitting at a delicious table. Thou art no less than thou wast when every thing contributed to thy pleasure. Thou art no less than when, at the head of thine army, thou wast the terror of nations, shaking the earth with the stunning noise of thy warlike instruments: for, at thy festal board within thy palace, among thy pleasures, at the head of thine armies, thou wast nothing before the King of nations. As an immaterial and immortal creature, thou art subject to his immediate power: but, to humble and to confound thee, he must manifest himself to thee in sensible objects. Behold him then in this formidable situation: try thy power against his : silence the noise of the multitude of waters : fasten the vessel that reeleth like a drunken man, Psal, cvii. 27. Smooth the foaming waves that mount thee up to heaven, ver. 26. fill up the horrible gulphs whither thou goest down to the bottoms of the mountains, Jonah ii. 7. dissipate the lightning that flasheth in thy face; hush the bellowing thunders; confine the winds in their caverns; assuage the anguish of thy soul, and prevent its melting and exhaling with fear. How diminutive is man my brethren. How many ways hath God to confound his pride! He uttereth his voice, and there is a noise of a multitude of waters in the heavens. He causeth the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth. He maketh lightnings with rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of his treasures. Who would not fear thee, O King of nations 2 In this manner the prophets represent all beings, animate and inanimate, material and immaterial, as concurring in the Creator's will. This is not a truth which requires the submission of faith, but every branch of it proceeds from reason, and is supported by experience. When God willeth the destruction, or the deliverance, of a people, all creation executes his design, when he is angry, every thing becomes an instrument of vengeance. A cherub, brandishing a flaming sword, prevents the return of guilty man to paradise. The air infected, the earth covered wirh noxious plants, the brute creation enraged, wage war with the rebel. Grasshoppers become the Lord's great army, Joel ii. 11. flies swarm, waters change into blood, light turns to darkness, and all besiege the palace and the person of Pharoah. The heavens themselves, the stars in their courses jight against Sisera, Judges 5. 20. The earth yawns, and swallows up Dathan and Abiram in its frightful caverns. Fire consumes Nadab, and Abihu, Korah and his company. A fish buries alive the prevaricating Jonah in his wide mouth. But on the contrary, when God declares himself for a people, there is nothing in the universe, which God cannot make a mean of happiness. The heavens unfurl their beauties; the sun expands his light; the earth adorns herself with flowers, and loads herself with fruits, to entertain the favorite of the King of nations ; while the animals become teachable, and offer to bow to his service. All things work together for good to them that love God, Rom. viii. 28. All things are yours, whether Paul, or Cephas, or the world, I Cor. iii. 22. Behold, I will do a new thing. The beasts of the field shall honor me, the dragons and the owls ; because I give waters in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert to give drink to my people, my chosen, Isa. xliii. 19. 23. Ke shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace : the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Drop down, ye heavens from above, let the earth open and bring forth salvation 1 chap. lv. 12. and xlv. 8. Thus, my brethren, hath God proportioned himself to our meanness and dullness, in order to inspire us with fear. It is necessary, to make us fear God, that we should see bodies, various parts, and prodigious masses of matter, march at his word to fulfil his will? Well, Behold bodies, in various parts and in vast masses | Behold universal nature moving at his word, and fulfilling his will ! Let us fear God in this view of him, if our minds enveloped in matter cannot conceive an idea of a Being, whose will is self-efficient, and who alone can act on immate rial souls. But, my brethren, a mind accustomed to meditation hath no occasion for this last notion: the first absorbs all. A God, every act of whose will is effectual, is alone worthy of the homage of fear. A just notion of his power renders all ideas of means useless. The power of God hath no need of means. Were I existing alone with God, God could make me supremely happy, or supremely miserable: one act of his will is sufficient to do either. We do not mean to enlarge the idea, when, speaking of an all-sufficient Creator, who is superior to the wants of means, we treat of a concurrence of creatures: we only mean to level the subject to the capacities of some of our hearers. Let us sum up what has been said. To consider a creature as the cause of human felicity is to pay him the homage of adoration, and to commit idolatry. The avaricious man is an idolater; the ambitious man is an idolater; the voluptuous man is an idolater: And to render to a creature, the hemage of fear is also idolatry; for supreme fear is as much due to God alone as supreme hope. He, who fears war, and doth not fear the God, who sends war, is an idolater. He, who fears the plague, and who doth not fear the God, who sends the plague, is an idolater. It is idolatry, in public, or in private adversities, to have recourse to second causes, to little subordinate deities, so as to neglect to appease the wrath of the Supreme God. To consult the wise, to assemble a council, to man fleets, to raise armies, to build forts, to elevate ramparts, and not to consider the succor of heaven, which alone is capable of giving success to all such means, is to be guilty of idolatry. Isaiah reproveth the Jews in the most severe manner for this kind of idolatry. In that day, saith the prophet, speaking of the precautions which they had taken to prevent the designs of their enemies; In that day thou didst look to the armor of the house of the forest. Fe have seen also the breaches of the city of David ; and ye gathered together the waters of the lower pool. And ye have numbered the houses of Jerusalem, and the houses have ye broken down to fortify the wall.