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vigour into our fainting souls. We are “strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man'.” The Lord is our strength, and " he will give strength and power unto his people. Blessed be God 2!"
Here, then, my dear brethren, is consolation under our fears and sufferings. Why need we suffer our minds to be faint and weary, when so many things concur to cheer and support us? Is not God on our side ? · Are not His holiness and truth engaged to perfect that which concerns us }, and to protect us from him that is too strong for us?
“God is faithful.” He is faithful to His promises. He has declared that “he will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber : the Lord shall preserve thee from all evil, yea, it is he that shall preserve thy soul";" and, therefore, He “ will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able, but will, with the temptation, also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”
1 Eph. iii. 16. ? Ps. xlvi. 1. lxviii. 35. 3 Ps. cxxxviii. 8. 4 Ps. cxxi. 3, 7.
He is faithful to His past dealings to His servants. He is the same to us as He was to all His saints. He is as truly helping our infirmities, as He once was helping theirs. He is the Father of the whole family in heaven and earth, and His love to all His children is uniform and impartial.
He is faithful to His character. He is as much love as ever: He is as much engaged by His infinite perfection to promote holiness, to protect the weak, and to help them to right that suffer wrong.
Comfort your hearts, then, my brethren. Remember the words of the Apostle, “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world!." Against His power and wisdom, the craft and violence of our enemy are but as the dust before the whirlwind.
But on the other hand, here is also an answer to all our excuses. The will of God is our sanctification. It is His will that we should not perish, but have ever
lasting life. He is without variableness or shadow of turninga. He abideth faithful?. He is ever ready to assist us, if we desire to resist and overcome the enemies of our souls.
1 Cor. x. 13. "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man; but God is faithful who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able, but will with the temptation make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”
In the preceding discourses on these words, my brethren, we have endeavoured to prove in the first place, that our temptations are not SURPRISING, and secondly, that, while, on the one hand, they are not INSURMOUNTABLE in their own nature, they are at the same time, so regulated and restrained by the Almighty, that no trial can assail our faith beyond the portion of strength which by His promises He is engaged to afford us. We now proceed, in the last place, to show,
that OUR TEMPTATIONS ARE CAPABLE OF BEING MADE THE INSTRUMENTS OF THE GREATEST BLESSINGS TO OUR SOULS. We can be at no loss to obtain abundant proof of this position, from the whole tenor of the sacred Scripture, as well as from many distinct and positive promises.
Nor even, in the absence of such express declarations, could we conceive it possible that He, whose mercy is over all His works, and whose love surpasses all that we can conceive, of fervency, of tenderness, and of fidelity, would expose to useless dangers and afflictions those souls whom He has redeemed to himself by the blood of His dear Son. Surely we may appeal, as our Redeemer has done, to the instincts of our nature; those instincts which are but the relics of His own glorious image in our souls : - which of you, being a father, would expose the helplessness of your infant, inexperienced child, to perils beyond his wisdom or his power? Which of you would place him in a situation, where, without your help, his temporal interests