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to him, as men delight to serve the interefts of those they dearly love. This will be to a spiritual man in a spiritual frame the most desirable thing in life : Philip. i. 20. 21. According to my earneft expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be aShamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Chrift shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life or by death. For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. This is a juft endearment of life. Now, the business of life fo. which it is desirable, is twofold.

1. To praise or glorify God in the world; to speak of the perfections of his nature, and shew forth the praises of him who hath called us, a. mong-men, to the advancement of his kingdom here under the fun : to strike up beams of his glory in a dark world, and commend him and his way before and to others. Now, here consider,

if, Whose is this privilege : The living, the living ; i. e. the living all along in a fucceffion of generations to the end of the

world. That is the import of the doubling of this word. This access to the praising of God in the world, is peculiar to the living. And,

(1.) It is not those that are now dead, but those that are now living, that have access to shew forth his praise and glorify him, in a world where he is so much dishonoured ; to side with him, and take his part against his enemies. It is true, the fouls of dead saints are praising God in heaven in the loftieft strains : but what the better is the world of these praises? No more than they that are fitting in the dark room down stairs, are the better of a glorious lamp shining in the upper room.

Is there ever a poor finner brought acquainted and

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to fall in love with Christ by their means ? No; their praises of God are to finners here as if they were not; they hear them not. Is the kingdom of Christ in the world advanced by these praises? No. It is the living, the living only, that have access to those pieces of service to God. The living man that fits in a cote-house, has the access to glorify God in the world that no faint in heaven has.

(2.) If those that are now living were once dead, they will have no more access to praife him in the world; but those that will be then living: and so on to the end. Men will go off the Sage one after another, but they will not carry that work with 'them; but it will still be lefe, in the hands of the living, and no other, whatever they make of it. There are heads, tongues, and hands of ministers and Christians lying in the grave, that have contrived, spoken, and acted well for God in the world: but now, if the cause of God and religion, which is very low, were at the last gasp, there is no more help to be had from those heads, tongues, and hands. The living only must speak and actfor it, or it must lic.

adly, An instance of it: As I do this day. Hezekiah was recoyered from sickness, and he gives God the praise of it. He looked on it as his bounden duty to fall closely again to that business of life, which was likely to have been taken out of his hands by death. What time of life the Lord lengthens out to us, after threatening a removal, we should be careful to use for the honour of God.

2. To propagate his name and praise : The father to the children shall make known thy truth, It is the special business of life, to endeavour that


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the name of God may live and be glorified in the world, when we are dead. It is a black mark for persons pot to care what come of the world if they were out of it. A child of God will be concerned, that religion may be kept up and propos gate in it: and while he is living, he has access to contribute to it. And here consider,

ist, What he has access to do for that end ; namely, to praise God to the younger fort, that are likely to live after he is gone ; cspecially to his own family, and particularly bis own children. Heb. The father to the children; 9. d. The father [fall praise thee] to the children. They may shew to them how lovely God is, and how desirable his way: and when they have children, they may do the fame to them; and so on, God's praise will be kept up in the world.

Now observe, he is still speaking of the living, for these are the subject expressly propoled to be spoken of. l. d. As for the living, the living father may praise thee to the living fons. It imports,

(1.) If the father die, though the children live, he can do God no more honour, and them nó more service, that way. If he has neglected his duty to his family in his life, he cannot come back again to mend the matter. If he left them ignorant of God, and strangers to him, though one word from him again could save their fouls from the pit, he has no more access to give them it.

(2.) If the children die, though the father live, he can do God no more honour, and them no more fervice, that way. He may take care of their duft, to bury it; but he can do no more P


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for their souls : As the tree falls it must lie. While they are both standing and living together, he has access to serve their souls: but when one of chem falls, that work is at an end.

2dly, How he may do it, how he may commen i him to them; namely, by making him known to them, as an object worthy of their faith, trust, and confidence ; Shall make known thy truth. The expression in the Hebrew is concise, He may make known, unto thy truth. The word ren, dered to hope, vers. 18. properly signifying intensely to look, Neh. ii. 13. 15. is understood. l.d. That they may look unto thy truth or faithfulness. So in it are two things to be considered,

(1.) The proper method of praising or commending God to the rising generation; and that is, by making him known. The more he is known, the more lovely will he appear. God is light. The best way to commend the suc to one sitting in a dark room, is to open the windows, and let in its light, and bid him look to it with his eyes : The best way to commerd God and religion to the generation rising, is to labour that they may know and understand them, by teaching.

(2.) The great thing we are to have in view in that work. It is, that they may look intensely unto his truth; that they may look away from the lyes and vanities the world is holding out to them, to be embraced as their portion : and that they may look unto the truth of God in Christ, in the promise of the gospel, by an eye of faith, trust, and confidence, fixed on it, and hold by that as their portion, their sure portion.

This is what men may do for the rising generation, and the view they should do it on : but


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God only can give it efficacy. No doubt Hezekiah did as he said, commended God, and made him known to Manafleh his son : but how unsuccessful all he did that way was, is notour from the wicked life his son led. Yet Hezekiah's work was accepted, and his prayers heard in the end; and perhaps his words were minded too, in Manajeb's conversion at long-run.

Three doctrines are deducible from the words.

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Doct. I. It is the peculiar mercy of life, that the living only are, and all along will be, those that have access to praise and glorify God in the world.

Doct. II, it is the special bufiness and privilege of life, to propagate religion, God's name and praise, the standing generation to the rising generation, the fathers to the children, all along.

Doct. II. The true way of propagating reli. gion, the standing to the rising generation, is, That the former make God known to the latter, Jo as they neay betake themselves unto him, his truth and faithfulness, by faith and trust.

We shall handle each of these doctrines in order.

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Doct. I. It is the peculiar mercy of life, that the living only are, and all along will be, those that have access to praise and glorify God in the world.

In prosecuting this doctrine, we Mall
I. Consider the praifing or glorifying God in the

JI. Shew how it is a valuable mercy and pri-

vilege of the living, that they have access to praise God in the world.

III. How

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