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HN V. 14.
The First and Fourth of these Sermons
PREACHED at the Parish-Church of St. James, Westminster,
January 9, 1739-40:
. And at King-Street CHAPEL, in the said Parish,
February 4, 1740-1.
Being Days appointed, by His M A JEST Y's Pro. clamation for GENERAL FASTS on Occasion
of the War against SPAIN.
2 CHRON. XV. 2. The Lord is with you, while ye be with
Him: and if ye feek Him, He will
of a serious Admonition, given by 1 the Direction of Heaven to the Nation of the Jews, as they returned from obtaining, under the Conduct of Afa their King, one of the greatest Victories recorded in Scripture. Their Condition, after This, might have appeared to human Policy a very secure one : But the Divine Wisdom saw the greatest of all Dangers impending over them, that which proceeds from forgetting God, and abandoning Virtue. And the Spirit of the Lord came upon Azariah the Son of Oded, and he went out to meet Asa, and said unto him, Hear me, Asa, and all “Judab and Benjamin : The Lord is with you, while ye be with Him; and if ye seek Him, He will be found of you; B 2
but if ye forsake Him, He will forsake you. Now these great Truths, of which Heaven thought it needful to remind them, at the Conclusion of a prosperous War, it must be very much more needful that we should attend to, who seem to be only at the Beginning of a doubtful one. And accordingly we are met here, by the Command of Authority, to consider our Ways, and humble ourselves before God for our Sins, as the necessary Means for deriving a Blessing on our Arms, and restoring and perpetuating Peace and Prosperity to our Country.
It is a melancholy Consideration, that Creatures endued with Reason and Humanity should ever come to employ Force against one another, and make the dreadful Addition of the Miseries of War to the many unavoidable Sufferings of Life. But wicked as this is, when Passion and Resentment, Defire of unjust Gain, or Fondness of infamous Glory prompts to it; yet when Injuries of pernicious Consequence are done to a Nation, and persisted in, and no competent Redress can be obtained, it becomes then, both necessary for particular Societies, and beneficial to human Society in general, that invaded Rights be