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Honour of thy Majesty, and of thy won-Sum. drous nvorks. *,
Now when the Name of God, or any ^^^ other phrase of the like nature, is thus made use of to signify God himself; 'tis plain that by his Name being Great among Men, is meant Their acknowledging or professing him to be the True God, and their Adhering to the Worship of Him only, in opposition to all Idolatry and False Religions. Mic. iv. 5. All people will walk every one in the Name of His God; and We will walk in the Name of the Lord our God for ever and ever 1. Will walk in his Name, that is, we will continue stedfast in his True Religion and Worship; sanflifying the Lord God in our Hearts, (as St Peter expresses it,) and not being afraid of Their Terr our, not fearing Their False Gods, who fill the Minds of their Worshippers with endless Dread, and vain imaginary Superstitions. According to the fame Analogy of Speech; That Precept in the Law, 'thou Jhalt not profane the Name of thy God, is as much as to fay, Thou shalt not incourage Idolatrous Practices, by letting thy children
S E R u.pass through the Fire to Moloch, Lev. xviii. V- 21. And in the Psalmist's expression,
ISY^ forgetting the Name of God, means, for the fame reason, falling into Idolatry: Pf. xliv. 20. If we have forgotten the Name of our God, or stretched out our hands to any Strange God. Nay, even mentioning the Name of other Gods, denotes, in Scripture-phrase, a tendency to Idolatry; In all things that I have said unto you, be circumspect, and make no mention of the Names of Other Gods, neither let it be heard out of thy Mouth, Exod. xxiii. 13.
This is the first and most usual Signification of this phrase, The Name of God; 'Tis used to denote God himself And because his Name, in This sense, is Then Great among Men, when they most universally acknowledge him to be the True God, and adhere to the Worship of Him only; hence, in a sense still more figurative, the Name of God is sometimes used, zdly, To signify his True Religion and Worship. Thus Deut. xii. 5. The place which the Lord your God stall chuse out of all your Tribes, to put his Name there
The Meaning is: The Place where he S E R M, shall appoint his Servants, the Professors Vof the true Religion, to appear before him ^*^ with the External Tokens of their Homage and Worship. And in This sense, the Name of God is then Great m the World; when they who profess his True Religion, and adhere to the Wor* ship of Him alone, and to That manner of Worship which He has appointed, do Honour to this their profession, by a suitable practice in the whole course of their lives; showing forth the Effect of their religion, in the Fruits of Righteousness and true Virtue; and letting their Light so Jhine before men, that Others seeing their good Works, may glorify their Father which is in Heaven. The Apostle St Paul, in his 2 Thes i. 12. uses exactly the fame manner of speaking; We pray always for you, says he, that our God would fulfil all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of Faith with Power; That the Name of our Lord Jesus Chris may be glorified in you: His Meaning is, that the Religion of our Lord Jesus Christ may by your Practice be recommended
S E R M. commended to the World, and the excellency of it made manifest before Men. Again, Rom. ii. 24. speaking of Such as, on the contrary, discredited their Holy Profession by an unsuitable and unworthy behaviour; Thou (says he) that makejl thy Boast of the Law, through breaking the Law dishonour ejl thou God? For the Name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles, through you. The Name of God, that is, the Religion and true Worjhip of God, is reviled and ill spoken of among Infidels, upon account of the ill lives of its unworthy Professors.
idly, In other places of Scripture, this phrase, The Name of God, is made use of to express those adorable Perfections or Attributes, which are as it were the proper Denomination and Character of the divine Nature. Thus Exod. xxxiv. 5. The Lord descended in the cloud, and stood there with Moses, and proclaimed the Name of the Lord: The Lord passed by before him, and proclaimed; The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering and abundant in goodness and truth: Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and
transgression and Sin, and that will by no S E R M. means clear the guilty: visiting the ini- Vquity of the Fathers upon the children, and <^"V~VJ upon the childrens children, unto the third and to the fourth generation. Here the Name of God, signifies the Character or Description of God, contained in a summary recapitulation of the Divine Perfections in general. The Same, at other times, denotes more distinctly some special and particular Attribute, to which the occasion peculiarly refers. Thus Ps. xx. 2. the Name, (that is, the Power,) of the God of Jacob defend thee. And Ps ix. 10. They that know thy Name, (that is, who have a just Notion of thy Veracity and Goodness,) will put their Trust in Thee.
A N D in These fenses of the phrase, the Name of God is then truly Great among Men, when, having just and worthy Notions of the Divine Perfections, and living under the continual influence of these impressions upon their Minds, they show in their whole Behaviour that they really and habitually fear his Power, admire his Wisdom, revere his Jujlice, love his Goodness,