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more deeply concerned in the objects, with which they are surrounded and the scenes, through which they are passing. All, that they see and hear and know in this world, will make happy or unhappy impressions on their minds, which they can never forget, nor cease to feel. They stupidly think and say, that “God hath forsaken the earth and that he will not do good, neither will he do evil.” This is real stupidity, because it is not owing to ignorance, but to inattention. God has made them capable of seeing his glory, which he is constantly displaying before their eyes in his works, in his providence and in his gospel. But they choose to pursue lying vanities and to fix their attention upon trifles regardless of the most important realities. They practically say unto God, " depart from us, we desire not the knowledge of thy ways.
“Their heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing and their eyes have they closed : lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears and should understand with their heart and should be converted.” This is the voluntary conduct of stupid sinners, who differ in this respect from those, who are awakened.--Their eyes are open snd their ears are open and their fears are alarmed ; they see God and all his creatures and all his works armed against them. They believe God is what he is and what he has declared himself to be and tremble. God is in all their thoughts and they meet his sovereignty every where in his works, in his providence and in his word. But how many secure and stupid sinners there are, who are going on blindfold and careless in the broad road to destruction, notwithstanding God is constantly speaking to their eyes, their ears, their hearts and consciences. They know not at what they stumble. But they have reason to fear, that they will soon fall, to rise no more.
4. If the angels of hearen discover the brightest displays of the glory of God in this world ; then all real Christians bave great advantages, while they are passing through the changing scenes of life, to make constant and swift advances in divine knowledge. They see the same displays of the divine glory, that angels see, admire and love ; and are vastly more interested in the great changes, which they not only see but feel, than angels are. God declares, that he governs this world in the manner he does, on purpose to make the inhabitants know that he is the Lord. They are all capable of gaining this knowledge, but especially those, whom he has called out of darkness into marvellous light. God has shined in the hearts of Christians, to give them the light of the knowledge of his glory in the face of Jesus Christ And the apostle says, that they with unveiled face, beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are actually changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even as by the spirit of the Lord. God has given Christians a spiritual discerning of spiritual things ; and he expects, that they should grow in divine knowl.. edge until they arrive at the stature of perfect men.-Christians are under the best circumstances and under the highest obligations to grow in the knowledge of God and divine things. Every thing in the world displays the glory of God and affords matter of instruction to all, who desire and endeavor to gain instruction.--You will allow, that Moses and Aaron had great opportunities to gain the knowledge of the glory of God in Egypt and in the wilderness, where God did such great and glorious things. You will allow, that the disciples of Christ who followed bim from place to place, heard him preach, saw his miracles and conversed with him from day to day, had peculiar advantages to gain high attainments in divine knowledge. But Christians have since enjoyed better opportunities, than Moses and Aaron and even the apostles enjoyed, to grow in divine knowledge. They lived under a dark dispensation, but Christians since have lived under a more enlightening dispensation and enjoyed the full blaze of gospel light. Angels have seen more of the divine glory under the gospel dispensation, than they ever saw before. God has done great and marvellous things, in preserving and protecting and enlarging the Christian Church, which has been thinly scattered among all nations, who have always been hostile to it and endeavored to destroy it. And he is still doing great and astonishing things in favour of the kingdom of Christ. We have lived in the most eventful period, in these fifty years past. Christians who have lived and still live in this eventful period, have enjoyed and do still enjoy peculiar privileges and opportunities of growing in grace and in the knowledge of God. This world is becoming more & more interesting and instructive to the angels of light; and ought to become more and more instructive to the children of light in the present day; and it must be owing to their spiritual blindness, if they do not grow in the knowledge of the glory of God faster than any other Christians have done before them.
The ignorance of Christians at this day is utterly inexeusable. They ought to discern the signs of the times and see and admire those things, which angels here see & admire. The world are awake to good and to evil and they are zealously engaged in building up and in pulling down the kingdom of Christ. Greater revolutions than we have yet seen are to be expected ; and all these will be brought about by the hand of God and will display his glory before the eyes of angels and men. And those who have eyes to see, ought to see ; and those who have ears to hear, ought to hear ; and those, who have wise and understanding hearts ought to learn. The duty of Christians to regard the operations of God in the dispensations of providence and frace, is becoming more and more serious, imperious and important. The world is blind, but they have been enlightened ; and God requires and expects that they should see and be able to guide and lead the blind, who are destroying themselves. Let Christians be entreated to improve the opportunities they enjoy to get and do good in this world, where there is more good to be done and to be gotten and enjoyed, than in any other part of the universe.
5. If angels see and admire the glory of God in his conduct towards mankind in this world; then there
be no doubt, but they will see and admire the glory of God in bis conduct towards them in their
future and eternal state. They know what he has done for them here. They know, that he has given his Son to suffer and die for them; that he has put the gospel into their hands, that he has appointed men to use the means of
with them ; that he here waits to be gracious to them ; and that he sends his spirit to strive with them, and in a word, they knew all that he does to form their characters & prepare them for their final destination. And when they see God fix them in their future and final condition, they will see and admire the glory of his conduct towards them, whether he fixes them in the world of light, or in the regions of darkness. While they praise God for his grace towards the vessels of mercy, they will also praise him for his justice towards the vessels of wrath. It will greatly augment the blessedness of the righteous to have the angels unite in praising God for their salvation ; and no less augment the misery of the wicked to have the angels praise God for giving them a just recompense of reward. The knowledge of the glory of God, which angels obtain in this world, enables them to make much greater progress in the knowledge of the glory of God, in every other part of the universe, not only at present, but forever. And while they are now teaching themselves in the knowledge of the glory of God here, they are preparing to teach the children of God, when they shall arrive in the kingdom of their Father. They will know a vast deal more of God's conduct towards the saints, than they knew about it while here and when they first arrive in heaven.-Christians are constantly surrounded by a cloud of angelic witnesses ; and therefore it becomes them to lay aside every weight and the sin which doth so easily beset them and to run with patience the race set before them, until they join the general assembly and the Church of the first born in heaven.
6. If God gives brighter displays of his glory here, than any where else ; then all men, in this life, are in the most important stage of their existence. They here enjoy privileges and advantages, which they will never enjoy again, after they go off from the stage of life. They here enjoy the best opportunities of securing the everlasting favor of God in this day of grace and space of repentance. They here enjoy the best opportunities of seeing the brightest displays of the glory of God; and at the same time of promoting it in building up his kingdom and increasing the number of his cordial subjects. These are infinitely important privileges, which will cease, as soon as we cease to live and act upon the present stage of life. Saints and sinners are here in a situation to do more good, or to do more hurt, than they can ever do in any future period of their existence. Their lives are infinitely interesting to themselves and to others. It highly concerns all to improve the residue of their days to the best advantage for themselves and others. They can never retrieve the loss of time, nor the loss of opportunities of doing and of getting good. They have much to gain and much to loose. This ought deeply to impress the minds of the old and of the young, of parents and children and of speakers and hearers. It is summer now, but the winter of death will soon come. And now be pleased to ask yourselves, whether you have laid a good foundation for peace and comfort in the closing scenes of life? Have you so faithfully served God and your generation, as that you are prepared, as David was, to fall asleep in death? Have you seen, admired and enjoyed the displays of the glory of God, which he has made before your eyes and become prepared to see, admire and enjoy the future and eternal displays of his glory? Have you enjoyed angelic happiness here and so prepared to enjoy it hereafter ? Is your path, like the shining light, which shineth more and more unto the perfect day? Do you rejoice in the hope of the glory of God, or does an expectation of seeing more of it, fill you with darkness, dread and despair ? Only put these questions to yourselves and give an impartial answer to them; and you will determine an important point, which perhaps some of you have desired to be determined; that is, whether you are