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nity, one day in seven, of hearing, that they should make it the business of their lives? Like the Jews of old, we are confident that we are “ a guide of the blind, a light of them which are in darkness, an instructor of the foolish, a teacher of babes ?.” Beware, lest we shall yet receive the sentence which our blessed Saviour pronounced on the self-satisfied Pharisees: “ Woe unto you, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in ?." Remember, that His promises are commands; that our privileges are duties; that our spiritual advantages and opportunities will be the measure of our guilt and punishment. He himself has said it. “ Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted ? it is thenceforth good for nothing but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men 3.”
Rom. ii. 19, 20. Matt. xxiii. 13. 3 Matt. v. 13. SERMON XV.
THE DOCTRINE OF THE HOLY TRINITY.
St. Matt. xxviii. 18—20. ." And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All
power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye, therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost : teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you : and lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen," THESE words were pronounced by our blessed Redeemer on a most solemn occasion. The hour had now arrived, when, having accomplished the work of our sal
The substance of this and the following discourse originally formed a single Sermon, which was preached on a Trinity Sunday. Some years after it was divided, and the two Sermons preached on Trinity vation, he was to return to the bosom of his Father, and to sit down, in our nature, at the right hand of the Majesty on high. Before his departure, therefore, he assembled, for the last time, those sacred persons, whom he had selected to bear the embassies of his mercies to a rebellious world, and delivered to them their instructions and credentials. On an occasion so special and so important, we might reasonably have expected, that our Saviour would, in few words, convey to his Apostles, the sum of what he required them to inculcate, as the rule of faith and practice to those, who were to be his disciples. Accordingly, we find, that, in the words of our text, he, on the one hand, includes the whole substance of Christian morality, in the observation of his precepts :-" teaching them," Sunday and the Sunday after, pretty much as they now appear, but with the omission of several paragraphs which would have made them too long for ordinary discourses. This last observation will also apply to most of the Sermons in this volume, and will, it is hoped, sufficiently explain the difference of their he says, “ to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you." While, on the other; by the form of initiation, which he has directed to be used in the admission of members into his Church, he, in effect, requires his ministers to bring all mankind into the profession of faith in the Holy Trinity, as that doctrine in which all other truth is contained and comprehended; that doctrine, which no man can deny without ceasing to be his disciple; which no Church can reject, without separating itself from the unity of that one body, of which he is head. In fine, he closes his instructions with a promise, which none but the Almighty can fulfil; that, to enable them to fulfil these conditions, he will be with them and their successors even to the end of the world; and, though the heavens must receive him until the hour appointed by the Father, yet still, by his Holy Spirit, and by the effectual and life-giving energy of his divine presence, he will never cease to abide with them, and to impart authority and power to their ministrations.
It is not my intention, in this discourse, to enter further into a formal discussion of the meaning of these words of Christ. I do believe, that it requires somewhat more of ingenuity than seems consistent with seriousness and plain dealing, to give colour or plausibility to any interpretation, except that which, in all ages, has been given them by the Church of Christ. I fear, too, that argument can have but little effect upon a mind credulous enough to entertain the supposition, that the whole Christian Church, from its earliest infancy, was totally mistaken as to the nature of the religion which it professed. Nor, indeed, do I conceive this to be a subject, which it is lawful to treat, in a Christian assembly, as a disputable question, But, besides this, I am anxious, on the present occasion, rather to meet one or two of those popular objections, by which persons who have not sufficiently considered the subject, are too frequently puzzled and perplexed.
I. The first objection which I propose to examine at present is this : that the doctrine of the Trinity is a matter of merely