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tranquillity of mind, when all before them is darkness, confusion, and uncertainty.
The same filial spirit will prompt one who is governed by it, to consecrate the family altar, and to frequent the public solemnities of social worship; and upon such occasions his heart will glow with the flame of a pure and refined devotion, and will expand in sentiments of universal kindness and good will.
8. It is the duty, and the character of the sons of God to live in habitual expectation of, and preparation for the promised inheritance.
There is a rest which remaineth for the people of God; it is an inheritance incorruptible, undefiled, and that fadeth not away.
It does not yet appear what we shall be: and in this state of minority and pupilage it far surpasses all comprehension. But of the existence of this glorious inheritance, and of the certainty of its entail, if I may so express it, upon the true offspring of God, there cannot be any reasonable doubt, for
it was the main design of the gospel of Christ to reveal the doctrine of immortality, and by its powerful energies to qualify the expectant of a future life for the participation of the promised blessing.
Of this glorious promise it becomes the sons of God never to lose sight, but to live habitually under the influence of these high and awful expectations. It is not necessary that they should be so absorbed in the thoughts and expectations of a future life, as to make them indifferent, and inattentive to the concerns of the present. It is su nt if they so consider their latter end, as to induce them to exert their utmost efforts to prepare themselves for the glory which is hereafter to be revealed, by the faithful and persevering practice of virtue. Under the impression of this glorious hope they will feel the most ardent gratitude to that kind Parent by whose mercy they become entitled to it. They will place entire and cheerful confidence in his promise that it shall be fulfilled in its proper season: the animating expectation of it will be an
unfailing source of joy and triumph, and having by the great mercy of God had a promise given them of entering into rest, they will be solicitous that they may not even seem to come short of it.
OF GOD RECOLLECTED
AT THE CLOSE OF THE YEAR.
PSALM XLVIII. 9.
We have thought on thy Loving-kindness, O God, in the
midst of thy temple.
And what subject can be more worthy of the serious, devout recollection of a frail and dependant creature? What consideration can have a more direct and powerful tendency to soothe and compose the mind and to reconcile it to all events? For what can happen amiss either to individuals, or to the system, while infinite benevolence presides at the helm and directs the course of universal nature ?
Meditations upon the loving-kindness of God can never be unseasonable; and where can this delightful theme be better pursued than in the temple of God—in the place in
which we assemble and associate for divine worship: for every place, however simple and unadorned, in which the true worshippers
of God unite in acts of social homage and adoration, is now a temple as honourable in the sight of God as the once costly and magnificent fabric of Solomon.
And, in the first place, let us meditate a little upon the general loving-kindness, or benevolence of the Supreme Being.
Benevolence, or, as it is here expressed, loving-kindness, is a disposition to produce happiness; and, when we ascribe this attribute to God, we must divest it of all that weakness and partiality with which it is commonly accompanied, and by which it is alloyed in frail, imperfect man. Nor is it necessary to suppose that the actual sentiment and feeling of benevolence, in a perfect Being, is precisely similar to benevolence in the creature: to that exalted feeling of which we ourselves are conscious, and which, however sublime, and dignified, and happy, must be infinitely beneath the