« AnteriorContinuar »
we were then admitted, and the solemn engagements into which we entered. The sacrament of the Lord's Supper was appointed expressly for “ the strengthening “ and refreshing of our souls.” To that we ought regularly to have recourse, for fresh supplies of those influences of the divine Spirit, which are essential to our spiritual life here, and to our life in heaven hereafter.
My friends, I hope that you have paid attention to the doctrine which I have endeavoured to place before you. Yo all profess, as one of the main articles of your faith, to believe in GOD'THE HOLY GHOST, WHO SANCTIFIÉTH YOU, AND ALL THE ELECT PEOPLE OF GOD. Who sancti. fieth
you. But are you sanétified by him? The word sanctified, you know, means to make holy. Are you made holy? Are you attentive to all your duties to God and man, and governed by religious principles in all you do or say? In baptism you were made the children of God. But remember, that in order to be numbered among the children of God, it is necessary that you
• Church Catechism.
And are you
be led by the Spirit of God. led by that Spirit? You trust that you are members of, that you belong to, Christ. You are not to any profitable or saving purpose his members, unless you are influenced by his Spiritp.
Seriously lay these things to heart. Seek in earnest prayer for fresh supplies of the aid of the Spirit; and may God of his mercy grant, that the communion or fel. lowship of the Holy Ghost may be with us all evermore.
p Rom. viii. 9.
READING THE SCRIPTURES.
JOHN v. 39.
Search the Scriptures. A MAN who has any belief in a God, and in a future state of rewards and punishments, must naturally feel anxious to know, by what means God may be made his friend, and his future condition rendered happy. Upon these most interesting subjects of enquiry, however, man is by nature greatly ignorant. “ Hardly do we
guess aright at things that are upon earth, 6 and with labour do we find the things “ that are before us: but the things that " are in heaven who hath searched out?" Man is often too at a loss, with respect to the line of conduct which he ought to pursue, and frequently most powerfully dispos not to pursue that course which his better judgment would point out to him. “ The way of man,” says the prophet, s is “ not in himself; it is not in man that “ walketh to direct his steps.”
a Wisdom ix. 16.
For the direction both of our faith and practice God has been graciously pleased to give us the holy. Scriptures. He has given them to be “a lantern unto our feet, “and a light'unto our paths.” It is upon the duty of hearing and reading the sacred volume, and upon the manner in which this duty should be performed, that I now wish to address you.
I. It can hardly be necessary to use many arguments for the purpose of enforcing the duty of reading and hearing the Scriptures, · when you consider that they are the very word of God." " All Scripture,” says
St. Paul,“ is given by the inspiration of Goda." and we are taught by St. Peter," that holy “men of old spake as they were moved by “the Holy Ghost®.". Now, if the great and glorious God graciously condescends to speak to his creatures, it is plainly their duty humbly to listen to him. If he vouchJer. x. 23. • Psalm cxix. 105.
à 2 Tim. ei Pet. i. 21.
safes to send them a message, they clearly are bound diligently to attend to it. To neglect the Scriptures accordingly, is to neglect him, whose word they are. When a message of importance is sent by some great and powerful man, it is received with attention and respect. If a kind and indulgent parent addresses a letter to his children, that letter is read with affectionate regard. And with respect and regard, beyond all comparison greater, ought we to attend to the word of him that speaķeth from heaven, to the message of our Father and our God.
The duty of reading and hearing the Scriptures will farther appear, from the im mense importance of the information which they convey to us. “They were written for " our learning,” and “are able to make us 6 wise unto salvation.” Reflect on the meaning of this expression of being wise unto salvation. We are placed in this world in a state of trial, and are all hastening on either to heaven or to hell, either to happi. ness or misery everlasting. How to obtain that happiness, or avoid that misery, we are
12 Tim. iii. 15.