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starices of our lot, to calm our minds in the storna of affliction, to sustain us in meek composure in our intercourse with unreasonable men, and to fortify us. against the terrors of judgment?.
Implore increasing measures of sanctifying grace, and beseech him to fulfil to you his gracious promise, - Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean from all your filthinesses, and from all your idols will I cleanse you," and arise from this. solemn scene to carry into practice the virtuous resolu. tions which you have now formed. Let young
disa ciples beware of every thing which tends to lessen the sensibility of conscience, or to taint purity of manners, and let them uniformly maintain the self-denial and the circumspection of prudence and sobriety. Let those in middle life take heed lest at any time their hearts should be overcharged with surfeiting and drunk enness, and the cares of this life; and let not the faila ing eye of age look back with favour on any of the pollutions of this world, or its declining days be made miserable by what is especially in them a foolish solicitude
Trust in God, that whatever evil men may be permitted to do to you or to yours, it will be made subservient to his glory, to your own good, and to that of others. The stroke which endangers your health, the calumny which blackens your name, the artifice which alienates your friends, and the injustice which wrests. your property from you, shall yield to you and to others the peaceable fruits of righteousness, if you. suffer like Christians. And, remembering what the body of your Lord was subject to in death and after it, fret not because yours must be wasted and broken by disease, and at last covered with worms and clods of dust. Let it be your desire that while it remains un..
buried, the sight of it may suggest to your family the vanity of every earthly confidence, and the necessity of immediate preparation for eternity, and that in its coffin, and in its grave, your flesh may rest in hope that this corruptible shall put on incorruption, and that what was sown in dishonour shall be raised in glory. Amen.
The Conference during the Transfiguration.
LUKE ix. 30, 31.
" And behold there talked with him two men, which were Mom ses and Elias, who appeared in glory, and spake of his decease which he should accomplish at Jerusalem."
THOUGH the life of our Saviour on earth was a sea ries of humiliation, there were some occasions in which he was declared to be the Son of God with power. There were periods when the heart of the Man of Sora rows swelled with joy unspeakable, and when the approbation of his Father spread over him a celestial glory. The transfiguration of our Lord has always been considered as the most splendid occurrence in his life. In that scene the church on earth, and the church in heaven met in their representatives, to do honour to the common head and lord of both. Often hath pious meditation ascended the holy mount to contemplate this wondrous scene, and come down from it saying, « We beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” The pomp which was at that time displayed in courts, passed away as a vain shew, but this incident lives in the hearts of the faithful, and its splendour shines for ever in the majesty on high,
The Evangelist tells us that the scene of the transfia guration was a mountain. So far removed was Jesus from the desire of vain glory, that while in his crucia fixion he was put to open shame, his glory was displayed on a solitary mountain, and before three chosen friends. They were permitted to witness it, that they might give a sufficient attestation to its truth, and they only were allowed to behold it, in accordance with the unostentatious character of the whole transaction. This manifestation of his Father's complacency was promised to our Lord, and the time fixed for it was come, yet he solicits it by earnest and affectionate prayer, and while he prayed he was transfigured. · We must not suppose, from the expressions here employed, that the glory was limited to our Lord's body. As his mental agony showed itself in his sweat of blood, so his mental rapture was apparent in the brightness of his counten. ance; and in addition to this, a splendour was spread over his body which irradiated not only his face but his garments. This was a pledge of the glory that awaited him at the right hand of God, and in which he was seen by John while he was in Patmos; who de. scribes it in the loftiest terms which language could furnish, and tells us that while he sunk under his overpowering majesty, he spoke to him with a compassion and gentleness which shewed him that his love was unchanged.
While the Saviour was thus invested with heavenly splendour, Moses and Elias appeared in glory, and talked with him. The re-appearance of the dead in. this world, forms a part of the vulgar belief in all ages. The arts of imposture, and the terrors of superstition, have influenced the fancies of some to such a degree, that they have imagined they saw the forms of the dead before them, and heard from their lips various counsels
and warnings. Independent of the circumstances which shew that such scenes are a delusion, the communications supposed to be made in them are either so trifling in themselves, or so limited in their object, that it cannot be believed by an enlightened mind that Jehovah would call the departed from their dread abode for such a purpose. Such a mind will never admit, that one would be dispatched either from heaven or from hell, merely to excite idle terror, or to gratify vain curiom sity. But how different is the case with the appear. ance of the two men mentioned in the text! The rean lity of their appearance is unquestionable, and the obm ject of it was in all respects worthy of the wisdom and love of God. The persons who appeared on this occa. sion to do honour to our Lord were most illustrious, and the event about which they talked was the most important in the whole economy of Providence, and is the object of vivid interest and saving trust from age to age. We are this day to commemorate that event, respecting which Moses and Elias.conversed with our Lord on the Mount, to whose glory they delight to de vote all their powers, and to whose merit they refer all their bliss, and all their glory. May the Holy Ghost enlarge our views of this grand theme, and excite every pious affection to the highest degree which our present state admits, so that there may not be one heart that wanders from the cross of Christ, nor a feeling that flags in our homage of wonder and love.
In this discourse I shall first direct your attention to the account given of the persons who.conversed with our Lord, and then to the subject of their conference.
1. The persons who conversed with our Lord were two men. It may be thought that two angels would have rendered the scene more splendid, but there was a peculiar propriety in employing men. Angels