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friends, “ Miserable comforters are ye 6 all,” it shall be well with those who have placed their hope and confidence in God. He will be with them in this their greatest extremity, to guide and support their steps. “ Though I walk,” says David, « in the valley of the shadow of death, 56 I will fear no evil; for thou art with “ me; thy rod and staff they comfort
It is then, my brethren, that the hope of the Christian is peculiarly valuable; it is then, when others are ready to despond, that he exults in the choice which he hath made. 66 His flesh and “ his heart may faint and fail, but God 6 is the strength of his heart and his “ portion for ever." What though his spirit take its flight to climes unknown ? There is no region of infinite space where God is not present. What tho’ he go down to the grave and see corruption? He knows that his Redeemer liveth; and though after his skin worms destroy this body, yet in his flesh he shall see God.
Before I conclude, let me only farther remind you, brethren, ye highly favoured of the Lord, that as your privi
leges are great, so your Divine Master calls upon you to walk worthy of them. There is a dignity of soul, an elevation of character which belong to you. Disgrace not yourselves, nor bring scandal upon your profession, by aught unworthy or unsuitable in your speech and behaviour. Think not, speak not, act not, like mere creatures of the dust, who look and long for nothing better than what this perishable world affords. Your treasures are in heaven, let your hearts and conversations be there also. You are travellers towards Zion : your way may be rugged,
-your accommodation but mean,—your afflictions may abound. Such is the will of your Father, who is in heaven; he sees this to be the fittest
the best means of training you up into a meetness for promoting his glory by your eternal salvation. Meantime, let your patience continue stedfast and immoveable. 66 Behold the “ husbandman waiteth for the precious 6 fruit of the earth, and hath long pa“ tience for it, until he receive the early 66 and later rain. Be
“ brethren ; stablish your hearts ; for the
coming of the Lord draweth nigh." “ Come, Lord Jesus, even so comequick“ ly.”—Amen.
HEBREWS X. 38.
If any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.
When Paul wrote this Epistle to the Hebrews, many of them, who had embraced Christianity, had apostatized from its faith, in consequence of the persecutions of their unbelieving countrymen, who founded their opposition to the gospel on some false interpretations of the prophecies respecting the Messiah. To fortify the minds of the believing Hebrews against these temptations to apostacy, the apostle proves at great length, from the Sacred Oracles, of which for ages their nation had been the deposi
tary, and the divine origin of which they admitted, that Jesus whom they crucified was indeed the Prince and the Saviour promised to their Fathers, predicted by a long succession of Prophets, and shadowed forth in all the types and ceremonial ordinances of the law; and thus establishes the infinite superiority of the person and priesthood of Christ to that of all the former messengers of God to man. To strengthen the good impressions which it was natural to suppose his reasoning had produced on his believing brethren, he exhorts them, in the verses preceding my text, to call to remembrance the joy which they felt when they first believed the gospel, the courage and constancy with which they then suffered for the faith, the kindness which they shewed to their partners in those sufferings, their sympathizing with him in his bonds, and the becoming temper of mind with which “ they took the “ spoiling of their goods, knowing that “ in heaven they had a better, even an
enduring substance.” And to encourage them to persevere in this honourable and consistent behaviour, “ not to cast