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hath this world's good and seeth bis brother have need and shutteth up bis bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him ?" And again he says, “If any man say, I love God and hateth bis brother, he is a liar : For he that loveth not his brother, whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen." The Priest and Levite were undoubt. edly as destitute of love to God, as they were of love to the poor miserable object they saw, that ought to bave excited their bowels of compassion and benefi. eenee.
I know it has been said that love to men flows from love to God; but the truth is, love to God flows from love to men, or the love of complacence flows from the love of benevolence. Men are as proper and direct objects of benevolence, as God is the proper and direct object of complacence. He, therefore, who does not love his brother, whom he has seen and who is a proper object of benevolence, cannot love God whom he has not seen and who is the supreme object of complacence. Pure, disinterested, universal benerolence is a plain and infallible criterion, by which men may determine whether they truly love God, or not. By this criterion, the Priest and Levite might have easily determined, that the love of God was not in their hearts; and by the same criterion the good Samaritan might have determined that his heart was right with God. And where is the person, that cannot understand this rule of trial and apply it and draw the just conse
quence from it?
If I should now ask every individual here present, which of these three men in the parable, thinkest thou acted the kind, friendly, benevolent, neighbourly part towards the man, that fell among the thieves. Every one would answer, the good Samaritan. Let me then urge you to go and do likewise. Every person you see or meet, whether rich or poor, high or low, good or bad, suffering or rejoicing, is a proper object of benevolence. God is good unto all and his tender mercies are over all his works ; and you ought to be merciful as your Father in heaven is merciful. There are weigh ty motives to live in the constant exercise of universal benevolence. This duty is enjoined by the law of love. The exercise of general benevolence tends to diffuse general happiness every where ; in families, in neighborhoods, in parishes, in towns, countries and kingdoms. How happy would the world be, if all would feel and act like the good Samaritan ? The same benevolent spirit would produce universal complacency towards God and cause all to rejoice in his character, in his laws and governinent. It would give every one good evidence, that he is walking in the straight and narrow path to eternal life ; and it is the only way to obtain it, as Christ told the man, who desired to be directed in the only sure and certain way to heaven. And it is a perfectly easy way to obtain the favour of God and man and the enjoyment of all good. li was as easy for the Priest and Levite to exercise true benevolence, as for the Samaritan. And it is as easy for every man to exercise true benevolence, as it was for him who pitied & relieved the poor, wounded, suffering, hopeless man. Why will you not immediately go
and do likewise ? You can gain nothing by delaying, but may gain much by the immediate exercise of pure, universal benevolence. It will give you the purest and greatest present happiness. It will instantly give you that inward peace, which passeth all understanding. For it is more blessed to give than to receive. How pleasantly did the benevolent Samaritan go on his way after he had felt and expressed pure benevolence ! Only do as he did and you shall be as happy as he was. Amen.
THE REWARD OF MOSES,
HEBREWS, xi. 26.-For he had respect unto the recompense of the reward.
The apostle employs the principal part of this chapter, in drawing the beautiful and amiable characters of the pious Patriarcbs. He represents them as having true love to God; and living in the habitual exercise of faith in future and eternal realities. Though they lived in this evil world, yet they lived above it. Though they were deeply concerned in the public and private affairs of this life, yet their eyes and hearts were steadily fixed upon the invisible objects of the invisible world. They exercised that faith, without which it is impossible to please God ; and that faith, by which both their persons and services met with the divine approbation. But it appears, that these illustrious saints were influenced in the general course of their conduct, by the promises of God and had regard to their future and eternal happiness. They beheld the promises afar off and embraced them ; and thought they gave up their earthly good, yet they steadily sought a beavenly inheritance. This is more expressly said of Moses, one of the brightest characters in this constellation of worthies. “By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter; choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season ; esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than all the treasures o Cgypt : for he had respect unto the recompense of the reward." Here
some may be ready to ask, was not Moses mercenary and selfish in all his conduct, while he acted with a view to a future reward ? To solve this question it is proposed,
1. To show what was implied in the reward, to which he had respect; And,
II. To show that he was truly disinterested, in seeking that reward.
1. Let us consider what was implied in that reward, to which Moses had respect. And,
1. The glory of God. He knew that God meant to glorify himself by fulfilling his promise to Abraham and delivering his seed from the house of bondage and putting them in possession of the land of Canaan. In bringing about this event, God would necessarily display his power, his sovereignty, his justice, bis mercy and his faithfulness. Moses expected that the glory of God would be displayed in the eyes of all the nations of the earth, if he led the children of Israel from Egypt to the land of promise, by his instrumentality. Accordingly, he undertook the great and arduous task of conducting the chosen people of God to their promised inheritance, from a supreme regard to the divine glory. He desired to be instrumental of promoting the glory of God, in the view of a stupid, idolatrous & degenerate world. And in doing this he placed his highest happiness and enjoyed an ample reward. All the while he was bearing the messages of God to Pharaoh, working miracles by divine power and authority and transmitting the divine laws to Israel, he saw and enjoyed the glory of God, which he esteemed more precious, than all the glories and treasures of Egypt. Besides, he expected to promote the glory of God through all future generations, by leading his people to the place, where he had determined to establish his Church and maintain bis cause amidst a frowning and opposing world.
2. The good of his nation was another thing implied in the reward, to which Moses had respect. Heknew that God chose the seed of Abraham for his peculiar people, whom he designed to set at the head of all the nations of the earth and distinguish by the most signal, temporal and spiritual favours. This was a great and noble object, simply considered. To form three millions of people into a regular and harmonious kingdom, give them the best civil and religious institutions, and prepare them for the enjoyment of the greatest temporal and spiritual blessings, was worthy of the greatest efforts of the Jewish Lawgiver. Moses saw this end in all its magnitude and importance ; and took a peculiar satisfaction in contemplating the future peace and prosperity of the people of God. It was to gratify this benevolent feeling towards his people, that God permitted him, just before he left the world to go up to the top of mount Pisgah and take a fair, full, and rapturous view of that Paradisaical spot, where the chosen tribes were to fix their residence and enjoy the peculiar smiles of beaven. As a man and especially as a prophet, Moses had very clear and extensive views of the great interests of his nation, which he highly valued and took peculiar pleasure in promoting. He must, therefore, have had respect to this as a recompense of reward, for his labours and sufferings with the people of God. Besides,
3. He had reason to expect a distinguished mansion in heaven, to which he had a proper respect. His own future and eternal happiness was a truly important and desirable object. All the world would say, that Mo. ses stood entitled to a superior seat among the faithful servants of God; and that he himself ought to have desired to be near as well as like to God in the kingdom of glory; or to be placed in a situation, in which he might behold the brightest displays of the divine perfections. This we know he desired before he died. He said to God," I beseech thee shew me thy glory.” Who can say this was an improper desire and request ? But if he might desire and beseech God to shew him his glory in this life ; why might he not as reasonably desire to be rewarded in heaven, by peculiar manifestations of the same glory? Moses had a right to regard