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the Weight of Affliction; and faint in a SERM. Day of Trial, is, because we depend too I. much on ourselves, and too little on God; and, therefore, it is just in God to blast our Designs, to defeat our most subily contrived Projects, and to make Ule of the weak Things of this World, to confound the Mighty. The Almighty takes Pleasure in shewing how weak Man's Strength is, taking them in the Snares which they themselves have laid ; and making these Achitophels the Occasion of their own Ruin and Downfal. And, therefore, if we would have whatsoever we do to prosper, let us be sure to make Use of such Means as are just and lawful, and, having placed our Trust and Confidence in God, to resign up our Wills to God's Die vine Will, and leave the Success to his wise Disposal.
4. From what has been said, we may infer, how happy that Man is, who has led a holy and religious Life. Such an one has a God to trust to, on all Occasions ; no Calamity can happen to him against which he is not prepared ; no Afiction which he is not able to undergo ; come Life, come Death, all is alike to him; he can say with yob, Though he say me, yet Job xiii. will į trust in him; and with David, I'5. C 4
SERM. will not be afraid of ten Thousands of the Peo=
I. ple, who have set themselves against me s round about. In a Time of public CaPsa. iii. 6. 1. 6. lamity, when Dread and Destruction seize
on the Minds and Spirits of Men, he is then Master of himself, and, having built his Truft on this Rock of Ages, he lives secure; though the State in which he lives suffer Convulsions, and the People rage and imagine a vain Thing. When the greatest of all Troubles seize him, a wounded Spirit, or a misgiving Confidence, he can rest himself on that Cornerstone, his blessed Saviour, and plead the Merits and Sufferings of the crucified
Hefus. Even in his last Hour, when Death shews himself to be the King of Terrors, and sets all his Forces in Array against him ; when his Mind is filled with Horror and Dismay, when the Wicked thall call for Mountains to fall on them, and conceal them from the Anger of an offended Judge ; then will the Soul of every good Man be filled with Comfort and self-complacency; it will be the greatest Pleasure and Satisfaction to him, to consider, that he has made his Peace with God, and got an Interest in the Merits of his crucified Saviour ; that the Sting of Death is taken away, and that, from
henceforth, he shall enjoy a Crown of Serm. Glory. It is not to be imagined what I. Comfort a good Conscience will then þring him ; it was always a continual Feast to him in his Life-time, and will be much more so at the Hour of his Death : But it is far otherwise with the wicked and ungodly Person, such an one has nothing to support him in a Day of Amiction; and, therefore, his Condition must needs be extremely miserable, who has so many Things to fear, and nothing to comfort him. And, let me intreat and beseech every one, who hears me this Day, to consider, that there will shortly come a Time, and we know not how foon, when we must resign up our Breath to him that gave it; and then, of all that Time which we now fo prodigally lavish away, and are at a Loss how to spend, none of it will bring us any Satisfaction, but those Moments which we have spent in the Duties of Religion, in the Business of our lawful Callings, and in Acts of Charity to our Neighbour ; in informing the Ignorant, and reproving the Sinner, visiting the Sick, binding up the Broken-hearted, and administring to all the spiritual and temporal Wants of
SERM. our indigent Brother : Nothing will bring I. us any Comfort, but that we have led
sober, honest, and devout Lives ; that we have feared the Lord, and obeyed the Voice of bis Servant ; and, therefore, have good Reason to trust in the Lord, and to stay ourselves upon our God. Which that we may all of us do, God of his Mercy grant, for Jesus Christ his Sake.
S E R M
The Progress of Virtue and Holi
2 Pet. iii. 18. But grow in Grace.
1 T is a very dangerous and fatal Mif-SERM
take which the Professors of Chrif- II. tianity are too frequently guilty of, to
fancy that they have done sufficient to obtain Heaven and éternal Happiness, when they have made only some Approaches towards a holy and virtuous Life, and to fit down satisfied with a partial Reformation.' 'If they have left off some notorious Vices (though, perhaps, they have only exchanged them for worse, and more agreeable to their present Age and Consti