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and to ensure his death by confirming thre Charge of treason againft Cæfar (m): Is there an Herodias 'whom you will not put away? Let Yuitable temptations arise : and guilt equal to that of Herod may become yours.” If we in wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth 'no more facrifice for fins'; but a certain looking for of judgement, and fierø indignation. If be that despised the law of Mofës died without *mercy: of how much forcr punishment shall he, be thought warthy, who hath tradden under Foot the San of God, and bath counted the blood of the Covenant wherewith he was fan&tified an unholy thing, and bath done despite unto the Spirit of grace (1) ?

I would leave on the recollection of the careless finner one additional truth, to which Herod, could his voice reach our ears, would bear witness. It is possible for you to resign yourself to habitual wickedness, until your hardened heart lose all sense of its enormity. It is possible for you to add crime to crime, until you entirely forget numbers which you have committed. But an hour when they fall be remembered is approaching. The guilty deed is not dead, but sleepeth. When you are laid on your death-bed, all your (m) Luke, xiii. 6. 12. Aas, iv. 27, 28. (n). Hebr. 1.26–29. 14


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crimes shall return to life: and as the, fupz posed revival of John the Baptist, dismayed the king who had murdered him, fhall Frack your soul with horrors known, only to the finful wretch when he trembles on the brink of the grave, and shrinks from the prospect of damnation. May your heart be renewed by the Holy Spirit! May you fly without delay to Christ. May you furrender yourself to Him without reserve. By His blessed atonement may you be rendered acceptable to God. May your last hours be cheered by fcriptural hopes of entering through His merits into everlasting glory! is no

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1 . i MICAH, vi. 8. - , Hie baih fewed thee, O Man, what is good. - And what doth the Lord require of thee, but

to do juftly, and to love Mercy, and to walk :, humbly with thy God? N urging upon men their various obliga

tions as servants of the Most High, the Holy Scriptures have recourse in different places to a diversity of arrangement. - Most commonly, they press upon us in the first instance that supreme and affectionate faith towards God and Christ, which is the foundation of every Christian virtue : and then pro ceed to inculcate those pure principles, those holy teinpers, and those good works, which

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genuine faith in God and Christ will necefsarily produce. Sometimes, however, folicitous to recommend the tree by a reference to the excellence of the fruit, they specify works in the outset: and then direct our views to that faith, from which every acceptable work is to spring. And though, in delivering a statement of human duties, they usually commence with those of which the Almighty is the immediate object; the order is sometimes changed, and the duties which we are to perform towards our neighbour are presented first to our confideration. Let the ministers of religion, solicitous that they may be found in the day of Christ not to have run in vain, neither to have laboured in vain, pursue the several tracks of argument and persuasion, which they see recommended by the footsteps of prophets and apostles. Yet whatever be the course to which the ambafJador of Christ resorts in his exertions to conciliate a refractory world to the offer of pardon and peace ; love to God and our Redeemer, whether mentioned first or last, must be the fountain from which every human duty is derived. Christ is the corner-stone of the belief, and the practice of a Christian. Is faith preached? It must be faith in Christ. Are good works inculcared? They must be identitet


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good works growing out of that faith. Are holy principles and";views and tempégs required It is that your souls-may be como formed to the image of Christ. Is love to your neighbour enjoined? It is in imitation of that love i wherewith Christ loved him, and gave himself for him an offering and a facrifice unto God. Whatever is taught, iwhatever is commanded, whatever is forsbidden; whether we exhort, for persuade, whether we speak of the glory that hall be revealed, or as knowing the terrors of the Lord: this is our ground-work and our purpose, that. God may in all things be glorified through Fesus Chrift; to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. I f :**

On the present occasion I purpose to explain the different branches of human duty according to the order, in which they are arranged by the prophet. : tri

The chapter, whence the passage before us is taken, opens with singular magnificence. Jehovah commands his chosen people to arise, and plead their cause against Him : and fummons the hills and the mountains, and the strong foundations of the earth to hear and to decide the controversy between his "rebellious servants and Himself. Scarcely has he made mention of his mercies in rescuing


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