Imatges de pÓgina
PDF
EPUB

of us)

III.

flesh,” (that mortal and perishable part sERM,

to live after the flesh. For if we live after the flesh," that is, if we are content to place our chief good in the short-lived gratifications of our fleshly appetites here, regardless of the eternal life promised us hereafter, then“ we shall die, or, in other words, we shall not be raised to a life of glory. But, if through the

spirit we mortifyand keep under “ the deeds of the body," if we use the body only as a terrestrial abode, to be thrown off when this mortal life ends, and not to be indulged beyond the bounds that reason and nature points out, then“ we shall live," our spirit shall survive the tumults, and troubles, and temptations of this state of trial, and be admitted to scenes more suited to its

pure and perfect nature, the joys of Heaven, where Sin can no more solicit, nor false pleasures and delights mislead ; in the former case, the pampered body that confined our views to this lower state of things, that drew aside the soul from the thoughts of Heaven, and brought it into bondage to Sin, shall carry it down E2

with

SERM, with it into perdition, to be lost and swal

lowed up of Sin and Death. In the latter case, the firm aud steady spirit, that shall have duly governed and moderated the fleshly appetites and desires, that shall have exalted and raised the thoughts to the throne of God's Majesty, that shall have asserted and maintained its proper dignity, and kept itself, as far as possible, unspotted from the world, shall not only in the last day ascend itself to Heaven, but have efficacy also, through the cooperating influence of God's grace, to quicken again the mortal body, to raise it from the grave, and carry it upwards to the realms of light, purified and adorned by the mercies of the Redeemer.

III.

66 Terrestrial,heretofore, suddenly shall it become “ celestial;" sown in corruption," " it shall ascend “ in corruption ;" in dishonor," with all the contaminations of this wicked world adhering to it, it shall be raised in glory” and honor;

sown in weakness, it shall be raised in power.” Shall we then have such sordid notions of Christianity, as to think that it

shall

SOWN

III.

shall consist in a few prayers, and a few SERM. bendings of the body, and not consider that the profession of a Christian is a perpetual state of warfare, in which rewards and honors are proposed to the faithful, active, and steady Christian, transcending our utmost conceptions; that any over-care about the things of this world, is a fulfilling the lusts of the flesh, and leading to the perdition of the soul, whereas, if we will but make the Gospel of Christ our first and incessant concern, doing every thing in such a manner as to redound to the glory of God, and keeping our thoughts constantly fixed on the condition we are to come to, we shall not only secure both body and soul from the pains of hell, but through the grave and gate of Death, which now have an aspect alarming enough even to the most resolute mind, we shall pass to a joyful resurrection. As

As you are Christians then, let me exhort you, as much as in you lies, to remember the laws, the pure and holy laws, of your Saviour and Redeemer, and to serve him with zeal and fidelity. What your consciences allow

not, 3

SERM. not, be careful not to do; but use your 1. diligence to prove yourselves Christians,

in deed as well as in name; and may God, of his special graçe, not only at all times, and on all occasions, put into your minds good desires, but by his continual help and providence, bring the same to good effect; or, as the collect of the day expresses it, “ that we may obtain that which “ he doth promise," may he teach and make us to“ love that only which he doth

command.”

SERMON

ON THE SECURITY ARISING FROM A RELI

GIOUS COURSE OF LIFE.

1 PETER III. 13.

IV.

And who is be that will barm you, if ye be

followers of that which is good? Next to the desire of happiness, or ra- SERM. ther, connected with it as a co-incident passion, is the fear of evil ; for to chance, and change, and temporary misfortunes, all men are in this life indiscriminately liable. Therefore it is, that all the plans we form, and exertions we make, to promote our felicity, are accompanied generally with measures of defence, and means of securing the benefits we seek to obtain. We know not whence the shock may comez how soon, or how late, that may disappoint our designs, and overthrow the fabric we are rearing: prudence, therefore, dictates

to

« AnteriorContinua »