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liis Father to inherit the kingdom prepared for them from the foundation of the world. There they shine as the brightness of the firmament, as the fun when * he shone in his strength. The firmament is rolled away. The fun is swallowed up in darkness. But the glory of the righteous fadeth not. They shine in glory shed upon them from the throne of God: and, like the throne of God, established for ever.
Our Lord, having concluded his interpretation of the parable, closed the subject with those solemn words, which he was accustomed to address to his followers, when he had delivered to them instructions demanding signal regard: He who hath ears to hear, let him ear. My brethren! Reverence the admonition of the Son of God, and ponder his doctrine in your hearts. Consider the supreme and everlasting importance of the truths which this parable enforces ; -truths important as heaven and hell, and enduring, as to their effects, unto eternity. If there be no resurrection, take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry. Eat and drink; for to-morrow ye die. But if the Scriptures indeed pronounce that every man shall give an account of himself before the judgement-seat of Christ ; Whojhall
dwell dwell with the devouring Jire? Who can dwell with everlasting burnings? Enquire, before the day of harvest arrives, to wHat description you belong. Are you of";Ae 'wheat, or of the tares; of the children of the kingdom* or of the children of the wicked one? Let every one examine and return an answer to himself. Are you a servant of Christ in sincerity and truth; labouring day by day to bring forth fruit unto him' tathe salvation of your soul through''In? blood; and, with Christian solicitude, fete* ing every opportunity which your station affords of strengthening others in genuine faith, and of upholding and advancing them* in holiness? Or are you a slave and a nit'^ nister of Satan, devoted to him, fulfilling his service, bringing forth fruit unto death, unto death everlasting; destroying your own soul by disobedience, and, like tares that smother the wheat, endangering and ruining the souls of others by your wicked persuasions, and your careless and unrighteous example? He that is not of Christ ft'' of the devil. If you know not to which master you belong; it is because you'vvill: not search the Scriptures and lay them \6' heart. The marks of distinction between the followers of Christ, andAhe subjects of
the devil, are so repeatedly and so clearly stated in the Scriptures, that they cannot be overlooked or misunderstood otherwise than wilfully. If you are of the number of the wicked; boast not because you may have been hitherto permitted to triumph in sin, nor presume that you shall always escape. The tares are not the less tares, because they are luxuriant: nor the left to be burned, because they have now the mastery over the crop. If thou art prosperous in iniquity, fay not within thyself; M God seeth not: God careth not for it." He waiteth only for the harvest. For purposes of his own he may delay to strike: but he will assuredly strike in the end. If thou persistest in rebellion: every instance of his patience which thou hast despised will aggravate thy condemnation. In hell, no less than in heaven, are many mansions. And among the various abodes of torture, the most dreadful are reserved for those, who turn the long-suffering grace of God into an occasion and encouragement of sm. If an habitual and humble comparison of thy heart and conduct with the standard of religion displayed in the Gcspel afford* thee ground for hope that the Holy Spirit hath in some measure renewed thy heart Vol. 11. O unto unto righteousness,: fret not thyself because Of the ungodly, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity. Quietly pursue thy course in godliness: rest in tiijS Lord, ami' 'wait patiently for him.: FrOr evil-doers shall be cut off: but those -tRaj wait upon theLord, they shall inherit the earth. Commit thy way unto the Lord'; and thou shalt enjoy, even in the midst of many sorrows, the greatest blessings attainable on earth, peace of conscience in Christ, and cheerful dependence on the Almighty. Fret not thyself because of the man who prospereth in the way of wicked device?. Yet a little while, and thou shalt be transplanted from the wilderness of this world into the land of promise; from the thorny field of tribulation into the garden of God. Health and riches and worldly success are bounties which it pleases God to bestow even upon his inveterate enemies. He maketh his fun to shine on the evil and on - the good; andsendeth rain on the just arid on the unjust. Earthly enjoyments are not the rewards whiqh he has fct apart for his servants. For them he has prepared a kingdom yet to be revealed; a kingdom purchased for them by the blood of his Son; a kingdom of honour and' glory S and and happiness at his right hand for.ever. Be patient in faith and holiness; and that kiftgd,bm shaH become thine inheritance. Tfeotj shalt enter into peace: thou shalt stand in thy lot at the end of days. Thou shalt behold thy Redeemer face to face^ TTiOu shalt be in blessedness with him throughout eternity, ) . * .'