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turned into how great pain will then be the joy of the sensualist! The curse of the profligate shall be returned on his own head; and despair and anguish shall ihen take possession of the heart of those who now “ make a mock at sin." The mere outside show, the worldly splendour of the thing, which doth now so oft dazzle and deceive, shall then no longer have power to charm; neither shall it in any respect influence the final award and decision of the Great Eternal. " The poor and the rich shall then meet together;" and the piercing, the all-penetrating eye of Almighty Intelligence will not otherwise regard the persons of men, than as the record of their lives shall
Such, brethren, are among the awful consequences, such is the solemn and awakening lesson taught by the wise preacher of Israel: “ The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.” In short, no craft, no
policy, no acuteness of the intellect, neither strength of hand, can blind or deceive “the eyes of the Lord.” Nothing is too high for his supervision, neither anything so low as to escape the knowledge of his watchfulness. “If I climb up into heaven,” saith the Psalmist,“ thou art there; if I go down to hell, thou art there also.”
Solemn then, and momentous, must be the thought, that even from our childhood we are irrevocably destined, and are all hastening to stand before the judgment-seat of One, whose eye hath been ever upon us, and even shall so continue. 0! be we fully persuaded, and be it written indelibly on the tablet of our hearts, that “the High and Lofty One that inhabiteth eternity," hath at this very moment, and always, his eye fixed upon us; that he is with equal ease acquainted with the secret thoughts
Psalm cxxxix. 7.
of our hearts, as he doth at all times hear and take cognizance of those more audible words, and those public actions of men, which are seen and heard in the highways of the city, and under the noon-day blaze of the sun. As, therefore, we are perpetually living in the awful presence of our Creator and our Judge, as "all things are naked and opened unto him with whom we have to do,»8 let us attend to the wise counsel and determination of the Psalmist, and, like him, “set God always before us.”
Let us, that is, keep HIM, his all-pervading knowledge and his matchless power, his unchangeable truth and perfect holiness, continually present to our minds; and then it
may be hoped that, under his divine favour, we “ shall not greatly fall." God, seest me,” will be our watchword, and our rallying cry when temptations from without, and weakness within, are
8 Hebrews iv, 13.
giving the enemy an advantage over us ; when we are by our own fallen nature incited to commit sin, and to soothe ourselves because of its apparent impunity as to this world, or because others may be doing the like, and glory in their shame. Never, 0 never, let us run into the dangerous error, the sad and gross delusion of the reprobate, that “the Lord shall not see, neither shall the God of Jacob regard it."9 The youthful patriarch in the land of Egypt did not so foolishly reason, or seek to blind himself to the heinousness of sin, although, as to all human probability, his sin would have remained wholly undetected. No! his strong and righteous resolve not to consent to an evil solicitation, was evidently and rightly founded on the irrefutable doctrine put forth in our text, that “ the eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.” Indifferent, therefore, comparatively speaking, to him was detection or concealment, as refer. ring to his fellow-men. He had a Master in heaven, whose ever-wakeful eye he could not escape; therefore, was it his stedfast determination to “keep innocency ;” and his noble reply to the syren voice of the evil enticement, was in the memorable words—“ How can I do this great wickedness, and sin against Cod ?"1
9 Psalm xciv. 7.
Let us, brethren, pray for the like spirit of watchfulness and faith, that wholesome and continual remembrance of him, in whom “ we live, and move, and have our being,” that we may be kept from every presumptuous, and from every secret sin. And aware of the searching scrutiny which shall be had on the last dread day of solemn and severe account, when “every work, and every secret thing shall be brought into judgment,”! be it our right and persevering aim to do as the apostle exhorts, “ And let us cleanse
1 Gen. xxxix. 8. 2 Eccles. xii. 14.