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it? Accordingly, when our Lord (whom the Jews at that time supposed to be a mere man) came to the house of Jairus, in order to raise his daughter from the dead, upon the first intimation of his design, “they laughed him to scorn.” “The maid (said he) is not dead but sleepeth." “This is rather to be called sleep than death; seeing her life is not at an end ; but I will quickly awaken her out of this sleep."

3. However, it is certain she was really dead, and so beyond all power but that of the Almighty. But see what power God has now given to man! To his name be all the praise ! See with what wisdom he has endued these sons of mercy! Teaching them to stop the parting soul, to arrest the spirit just quitting the breathless clay, and taking wing for eternity! Who hath seen such a thing ? Who hath heard such things ? Who hath read them in the annals of antiquity ? Sons of men,

can these dry bones live ?" Can this motionless heart beat again? Can this clotted blood flow any more? Can these dry, stiff vessels, open to give it passage ? Can this cold flesh resume its native warmth, or those eyes again see the sun ? Surely these are such things, (might one not almost say, such miracles ?) as neither we of the present generation, nor our fathers had known!

4. Consider, I entreat you, how many miracles of mercy (so to speak) are contained in one! That poor man, who was lately numbered with the dead, by the care and pains of these messengers of God, again breathes the vital air, opens his eyes, and stands up upon his feet. He is restored to his rejoicing family, to his wife, to his (late) helpless children, that he may again, by his honest labour, provide them with all the necessaries of life. See now what ye have done, ye ministers of mercy! Behold the fruit of your labour of love! Ye have been a husband to the widow, a father to the fatherless. And hereby ye have given meat to the hungry, drink to the thirsty, clothes to the naked. For hungry, thirsty, and naked, these little ones must have been, 'had not you restored him that prevents it. You have more than relieved, you have prevented that sickness, which might naturally have arisen from their want of sufficient food to eat, or raiment to put on. You have hindered those orphans from wandering.up and down, not having a place where to lay their head. Nay, and very possibly you have prevented some of them from being lodged in a dreary comfortless prison.

5. So great, so comprehensive is the mercy, which you have shown to the bodies of your fellow creatures! But why should their souls be left out of the account? How great are the benefits you have conferred on these also! The husband has now again an opportunity of assisting his wife, in things of the greatest moment. He may now again strengthen her hands in God, and help her to run with patience the race that is set before her. He may again join with her in instructing their children, and training them up in the way wherein they should go: who may live to be a comfort to their aged parents, and useful members of the community.

6. Nay, it may be you have spatched the poor man himself, not only from the jaws of death, but from sinking lower than the waters, from the jaws of everlasting destruction. It cannot be doubted, but some of those whose lives you have restored, although they had been before without God in the world, will remember themselves, and not only with their lips, but in their lives, show forth his praise. It is highly probable, some of these (as one out of the ten lepers) “ will return and give thanks to God," real, lasting thanks, by devoting themselves to his honourable service.

7. It is remarkable, that several of those whom you have brought back from the margin of the grave, were intoxicated at the very time when they dropped into the water. And at that very instant, (which is frequently the case, they totally lost their senses. Here therefore was no place for, no possibility of repentance. They had not time, they had not sense, so much as to cry out, “ Lord have mercy !" So they were sinking through the mighty waters into the pit of destruction! And these instruments of divine mercy plucked them at once out of the water, and out of the fire! By the same act, delivered them from temporal and from eternal death!

8. Nay, one poor sinner (let it never be forgotten !) was just coming down from the ship, when (overtaken by the justice and mercy of God) her 'foot slipped, and she fell into the river. Instantly her senses were lost, so that she could not call upon God. Yet he had not forgotten her. He sent those who delivered her from death; at least, from the death of the body. And who knows, but she may lay it to heart, and turn from the error of her ways? Who knows, but she may be saved from the second death, and, with her deliverers,“ inherit the kingdom?":

9. One point more deserves to be particularly remarked. Many of those, who have been restored to life, (no less than eleven out of the fourteen, that were saved in a few months,) were in the number of those that are a reproach to our nation, wilful self murderers. As many of the desperate men, who attempt this horrid crime, are men who have had a liberal education, it is a pity but they would consider those fine words, 'not of a poor, narrow souled Christian, but of a generous heathen, nay, a Roman! Let them calmly consider that beautiful passage :

“ Proxima deinde tenent mæsti loca, qui sibi letum

Insontes perperêre manu, lucemque perosi
Projecêre animus. Quam vellent æthere in alto
Nunc et pauperiem, et duros perferre labores
Fata obstant, tristique palus innabilis unda

Alligat, et novies Styx interfusa coercet."* “ Fata obstant !" But in favour of many, we see God has overruled fate. They are brought back, over the unnavigable river. They do behold the upper

skies. They see the light of the sun. Oh let them see the light of Thy countenance! And let them so live their few remaining days on earth, that they may live with thee for ever!

IV. 1. Permit me now to make a short application. ** But to whom shall I direct this ? Are there any here who are unhappily prejudiced against that revelation, which breathes nothing but benevolence? Which contains the richest display of God's love to man, that ever was made from the foundation of the world? Yet even to you

*" Then crowds succeed, who, prodigal of breath,

Themselves anticipate the doom of death;
Though free from guilt, they cast their lives away,
And sad and sullen hate the golden day.
Oh with what joy the wretches now would bear
Pain, toil, and wo, to breathe the vital air !
In vain! By fate for ever they are bound
With dire Avernus, and the lake profound,
And Styx, with nine wide channels, roars around !" Pitt's Virg.

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I would address a few words; for if you are not Christians, you are men. You too are susceptible of kind impressions: you have the feelings of humanity. Has not your heart too glowed at that noble sentiment; (worthy the heart and the lips of the highest Christian ;)

“ Homo sum: humani nihil a me alienum puto !" Have not you also sympathized with the afflicted ? How many times have you been pained at human misery? When you have beheld a scene of deep distress, has not your soul melted within you ?

“And now and then a sigh you stole,

And tears began to flow." But is it easy for any one to conceive a scene of deeper distress than this ? Suppose you are standing by, just when the messenger comes in, and the message is delivered. “I am sorry to tell you, but you must know it, your husband is no more. He was making haste out of the vessel, and his foot slipped. It is true, after a time, his body was found; but there it lies, without any signs of life." In what a condition are now both the mother and the children! Perhaps, for a while, stupid, overwhelmed, silent; staring at each other; then bursting out into loud and bitter lamentation ! Now is the time to help them; by assisting those who make it their business so to do. Now let nothing hinder you from improving the glorious opportunity! Restore the husband to his disconsolate wife, the father to his weeping children. It is true, you cannot do this in person : you cannot be upon the spot. But you may do it in an effectual manner, by assisting those that are.

You may now, by your generous contribution, send them the help which you cannot personally give. Oh shut not up your bowels of compassion towards them! Now open your hearts and your hands. If you have much, give plenteously; if not, give a little, with a willing mind.

2. To you, who believe the Christian revelation, I may speak in still stronger manner. You believe, your blessed Master " left you an example, that you might tread in his steps.” Now you know, his whole life was one labour of love. You know “how he went about doing good," and that without intermission ; declaring to all, “ My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.” · Is not that, then, the language of your

heart;

" Thy mind throughout my life be shown,

While list'ning to the wretches' cry,
The widows' and the orphans' groan,

On mercy's wings I swiftly Ay,
The poor and helpless to relieve;

My life, my all, for them to give !"
Occasions of doing this can never be wanting; for “the poor ye have
always with you." But what a peculiar opportunity does the solemnity
of this day furnish you with, of “ treading in his steps,” after a manner
which you did not before conceive? Did he say to the poor

afflicted parent, (doubtless to the surprise of many,)“ Weep not ?" And did he surprise them still more, when he stopped her flowing tears, by restoring life to her dead son, and " delivering him to his mother ?" Did he (notwithstanding all that “ laughed him to scorn") restore to life the daughter of Jairus? How many things of a nearly resembling-sort, "it human we may liken to divine,” have been done, and continue to be done daily, by these lovers of mankind? Let every one then be ambitious of having a share in this glorious work! Let every man (in a stronger sense than Mr. Herbert meant)

« Join hands with God, to make a poor man live!" By your generous assistance, be ye partakers of their work, and partakers of their joy.

3. To you I need add but one word more. Remember (what was spoken at first) the solemn declaration of Him, whose ye are, and whom ye serve, coming in the clouds of heaven! While you are promoting this comprehensive charity, which contains feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, lodging the stranger; indeed all good works in one; let those animating words be written on your hearts, and sounding in your ears; "Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these, ye have done it unto me.”

We are

SERMON CV.-On Pleasing all Men. “Let every man please his neighbour for his good to edification,” Rom. xv, 2.

1. UNDOUBTEDLY the duty here prescribed is incumbent on all mankind; at least, on every one of those to whom are entrusted the oracles of God : for it is here enjoined to every one without exception, that names the name of Christ. And the person whom every one is commanded to please, is his neighbour ; that is, every child of man. Only we are to remember here, what the same apostle speaks upon a similar occasion ; “ If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men." In like manner, we are to please all men, if it be possible, as much as lieth in us: but strictly speaking, it is not possible : it is what no man ever did, nor ever will perform. But suppose we use our utmost diligence, he the event as it may, we fulfil our duty.

2. We may farther observe in how admirable a manner the apostle limits this direction ; otherwise, were it pursued without any limitation, it might produce the most mischievous consequences. directed to please them, for their good; not barely for the sake of pleasing them, or pleasing ourselves; much less of pleasing them to their hurt; which is so frequently done, indeed continually done, by those who do not love their 'neighbour as themselves. Nor is it only their temporal good, which we are to aim at in pleasing our neighbour ; but what is of infinitely greater consequence: we are to do it for their edification. In such a manner as may conduce to their spiritual and eternal good. We are so to please them, that the pleasure may not perish in the using, but may redound to their lasting advantage; may make them wiser and better, holier and happier, both in time and in eternity.

3. Many are the treatises and discourses which have been published on this important subject. But all of them that I have either seen or heard, were miserably defective. Hardly one of them proposed the right end: one and all had some lower design in pleasing men, than to save their souls,—to build them up in love and holiness. Of consequence, they were not likely to propose the right means, for the attainment of that end. One celebrated tract of this kind, entitled, “The Courtier," was published in Spain, about two hundred years ago, and translated into various languages. But it has nothing to do with edi

fication, and is therefore quite wide of the mark. Another treatise, entitled, “ The Complete Courtier," was published in our own country, in the reign of king Charles the second ; and, as it seems, by a retainer to his court. In this there are several very sensible advices concerning our outward behaviour; and many little improprieties in word or action are observed, whereby men displease others without intending it: but this author, likewise, has no view at all to the spiritual or eternal good of his neighbour. Seventy or eighty years ago, another book was printed in London, entitled, “ The Art of Pleasing."

The Art of Pleasing.” But as it was wrote in a languid manner, and contained only common, trite observations, it was not likely to be of use to men of understanding, and still less to men of piety.

4. But it may be asked, has not the subject been since treated of by a writer of a very different character ? Is it not exhausted, by one who was himself a consummate master of the art of pleasing ? And who, writing to one he tenderly loved, to a favourite son, gives him all the advices which his great understanding, improved by various learning, and the experience of many years, and much converse with all sorts of men, could suggest ? I mean, the late Lord Chesterfield ; the general darling of all the Irish, as well as of the English nation.

5. The means of pleasing, which this wise and indulgent parent continually and earnestly recommends to his darling child, and on which he, doubtless, formed both his tempers and outward conduct,

“ Till death untimely stopp'd his tuneful tongue,"were, first, making love, in the grossest sense, to all the married women whom he conveniently could : (single women he advises him to refrain from, for fear of disagreeable consequences :) secondly, constant and careful dissimulation : always wearing a mask : trusting no man upon earth, so as to let him know his real thoughts; but perpetually seeming to mean what he did not mean, and seeming to be what he was not: thirdly, well devised lying to all sorts of people : speaking what was farthest from his heart: and, in particular, flattering men, women, and children, as the infallible way of pleasing them.

It needs no great art to show, that this is not the way to please our neighbour for his good, or to edification. I shall endeavour to show, that there is a better way of doing it; and indeed a way diametrically opposite to this. It consists,

I. In removing hinderances out of the way; and,
II. In using the means that directly tend to this end.

I. 1. I advise all that desire to "please their neighbour for his good to edification," first, to remove all hinderances out of the way; or, in other words, to avoid every thing which tends to displease wise and good men, men of sound understanding and real piety. Now cruelty, malice, envy, hatred, and revenge, are displeasing to all wise and good men; to all who are endued with a sound understanding and genuine piety. There is likewise another temper, nearly related to these, only in a lower kind, and which is usually found in common life, wherewith men in general are not pleased : we commonly call it ill nature. With all possible care avoid all these: nay, and whatever bears any resemblance to them ;-as sourness, sternness, sullenness, on the one hand; peevishness and fretfulness on the other ;-if ever you hope to "please your neighbour for his good to edification."

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