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was light without a shade, and beauty SE R M. without a stain.-At the same time, his

VIII. example is attended with this singular advantage, of being more accommodat

ed than any other to general imitation. - It was distinguished by no unnatural

austerites, no affected singularities; but exhibits the plain and simple tenor of all those virtues for which we have most frequent occasion in ordinary life. In order to render it of more essential benefit, our Lord fixed his residence in no particular place; he tied himself down to no particular calling or way of living; but gives us the opportunity of viewing his behaviour, in that variety of lights 'which equally and indifferently regard all mankind. His life was divided between the retired and the active state. Devotion and business equally shared it. In the discharge of that high office with which he was vested, we behold the perfect model of a public character; and we behold the most beautiful example of private life, when we contemplate him among his

disciples,

- SER M. disciples, as á Father in the midst of his VIII.

family.-By such means he has exhibit-
ed before us specimens of every kind of
virtue; and to all ranks and classes of
men has afforded a pattern after which
they may copy. Hardly is there any
emergency which can occur in life, but
from some incident in our Saviour's con-
duct, from some feature displayed in his
character, we are enable to say to our-
selves, “ Thus Christ would have spo-
“ ken, thus he would have acted, thus
“ he would have suffered, if he had
“ been circumstanced as we are now.”

Instead, therefore, of thinking of thy neighbours around thee, and of inquiring how they behave, keep Christ in thine eye, and in thy whole conduct follow him. Follow him in his steady and conscientious discharge of duty, amidst opposition from evil men, and a corrupted world. Follow him in his patient submission to his Father's will, and the calmness of his spirit under all trials. Follow him in his acts of disinterested benevolence, in his com

passion

passion to the unhappy, in his readiness S E R M. to oblige, to assist, and to relieve. Imi-, Vill., tate the mildness and gentleness of his manners. Imitate the affability and condescension which appeared in his behaviour. Imitate the uncorrupted fimplicity and purity which distinguished his whole life.

These are much worthier and nobler objects of your attention, than any of those trifling varieties which you can explore and discover in the characters of those among whom you live. By lifting your view to so high a standard, you will be preserved from descending to those futile and corrupting employments of thought, which occupy the idle, the vain, and the malignant. It is incredible, how much time and attention are thrown away by men, in examining the affairs of others, and discuffing their conduct. Were their time and attention thrown away only, the evil would, in some degree, be less. But they are worse than thrown away; they are not merely fruitless, but productive

of

VIII.

SER M. of much mifchief. Such a habit of

- thought is connected with a thousand
vices. It is the constant source of rash
and fevere censure. It arises from envy
and jealousy. It foments ill nature and
pride. It propagates misunderstanding
and discord. All those evils would
be prevented, if the reproof which our
Lord administers in the text came ofte-
ner home, with proper authority, to the
reflexion of men : What is that to thee?
Each of us have more material and im-
portant business of our own to fulfil.
Our task is assigned; our part allotted.
Did we suitably examine how that
part was performed, we should be less
disposed to bufy ourselves about the
concerns of others. We would dis-
cover many a disorder to be correct-
ed at home ; many a weed to be pull-
ed out from our own grounds; much
remaining to be done, in order to ren-
der ourselves useful in this world, and
fit for a world to come.- Where-
fore, instead of being critics on others, .
let us employ our criticism on

ourselves.

ourselves. Leaving others to be judged SERM. by Him who searcheth the heart, let us V

VIIL. implore his assistance for enabling us to act well our own part, and to follow Christ.

VOL. IV,

M

SERMON

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