Imatges de pÓgina
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the rest follows of course, without further application. As the tree shoots up and spreads, chat original impression is displayed on every side, and multiplied in a thousand branches.

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How many rules and maxims of life might be spared, could we fix a principle of virtue within; break the story heart, as Ezek. xi. the Scripture calls it, and inscribe this xxxvi. 26. living sentiment of the love of God in the affection; that tender but powerful part of our frame, from which our whole life, and all our actions are derived, as the tree, branches, leaves, and fruit, spring out of the kernel of the almond?

Were the Spirit of Piety within, and God's name written in our breast, how little teaching would then fuffice, to shew us what is pleasing to him? His love, once in the heart, would pass with ease into our whole behaviour; and leave upon all our words and actions, engrav

ed,

Exod. ed, and shining, as on the Mitre of Aa: xxviii. 36.

ron, Holiness unto the Lord.

If Honesty and Justice be once seated in the affectic, the decisions of Casuists will be no longer wanted : he who loves righteousness, is master of all the distinctions in morality.

Tim.i.g. T:A law is for the ungodly. The other

commardments, with the train of penal-
ties annexed to them, are made only for
those persons, who are not good enough
to be governed by this precept.

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Exod.xxi. 17.

He that curseth his Father or his Mother,
Mall surely be put to death.

Gen.ix.6. Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall

his blood be shed.

Levit. xx. The adulterer and the adulteress shall

surely be put 10 death.

Н.

He that fealeth a man Mall surely be put Exod.

xxi. 16. to death.

xxii. I, 3.0

If a man shall feal an ox, or a sheep, he Exod. shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four Sheep for a sheep. If he have nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft.

If a false witness rise up against any man, Deut. xix.

16, 19, 21. to testify against him that which is wrong ;

then shall ye do unto him, as he had thought to have done unto his brother, And thine sye shall not pity, but life shall go for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.

12, &c.

The Law, you see, is encompassed with terrour; like that mountain, from which it was delivered. Take heed to yourselves, Exod.xix. that ye go not up, or touch the border of it. There shall not a hand touch it, but he shall furely be stoned, or shot through. And there were thunders, and lightnings, and a thick doud upon the mount, and the voice of the VOL. II.

T

trum.

trumpel exceeding loud, so that all the people that was in the camp, trembled.

But what is all this terrour, and these dangers to that man, who is not prompted to transgress? To him, who has brought his heart into subjection to this sublime precept, Thou shalt not covet, the threatenings annexed to the commandment are a dead-letter ; the yoke of bondage is broken. Duty and desire concurring, he has the pleasing task of fulfilling his Maker's will, by all those offices which are the most agreeable to himself. Such labour is delight; such service perfect freedom. He is passed from under the

law, into an evangelical, or rather indeed Hebr. xii. a heavenly state; resembling the spirits of Matth. juft men made perfeet, and the angels which xvii. 23. do always behold the face of the Father which

is in heaven; and receiving some foretafte Psal. xvi. even now, of the fulness of joy that is in

God's presence, the pleasure which is at his right hand for evermore,

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? O happy, envied state of those good men, who are delivered from the bondage Rom. vii. of corruption into this glorious liberty of the children of God! Slaves no longer to the tyranny of sin; nor condemned to wage an everlasting war, with turbulent palfions, depraved appetites, and inveterate habits of vice; Avarice, mean and miserable; Ambition, never to be satisfied; Pride, puffed up with wind; Vanity, decked with feathers; Envy, Wrath, In. temperance, and every inordinate affection, the offspring of Selfishness and Folly, the parents of Shame and Torment. No dispute, delay, or murmur, against the voice of Wisdom and Piety. Peace all, and harmony within the good man's breast; and his hopes full of immortality. Men he regards, all, with the eye of Charity; and looks up to God with the senciments of a Son, reverence softened by affection, and that perfear John iv, Love which cafteth out Fear.

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