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Bibles are put into your hands; ministers persuade you ; friends advise you; and thousands of saints pray for you. For this end, prayer, preaching, baptism, and the Lord's supper, and a great variety of means of grace are instituted. For this end heaven is prepared and furnished with many mansions; the pearly gates open, and

; dart their splendors from afar to attract our eyes; and things which the eye, that has seen so many things, had never seen; which the ear, that has had still more extensive intelligence, had never heard ; nor the heart of man, which is even unbounded in its conceptions, had never conceived, are brought to light by the gospel. Nay, for this purpose, your salvation, Sinai thunders, hell roars and throws its devouring flames, even to warn a stupid world not to plunge themselves into that place of torment. In short, the kind designs of redeeming love run through the whole economy of Providence towards our world. Heaven and earth, and in the sense mentioned, hell itself, are striving to save you. The strongholds of sin and Satan, in which you are held prisoners, are attacked in kindness to you from all quarters.' What beneficent efforts, what heroic exploits of divine goodness are these! And, blessed be God, these efforts are not in vain.

The celestial regions are fast peopling, though, alas! not so fast as the land of darkness, with numerous colonies from our guilty globe. Even in these dregs of time, when iniquity abounds, and the love of many waxes cold, Jesus is gaining many hearts and saving many souls, in the various apartments of his church. Though you and thousands more should be left, and continue to neglect, yet such excellency shall not want admirers, such a physician shall not want employ in our dying world. No," he shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied; and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.” Isa. liii. 11. And I doubt not but there are some among you who are the trophies of his victorious love-of his victorious love, I say : for it is by the force of love he sweetly conquers.

Now you, my brethren, are the subjects of this administration of grace; with you, these means are used for your salvation: to you Jesus is offered as a Savior; and heaven and earth are striving to lodge you safe in his arms. You should not rejoice in the wants of others; but certainly it may make you the more sensible of your peculiar obligations, to reflect that your lot, in this respect, is singular. It is but a very small part of mankind that enjoy these great advantages for a happy immortality. You live under the gospel, whilst the most of the nations of the earth are sunk in heathen idolatry, groaning under Popish tyranny, seduced by Mahometan imposture, or hardened in Jewish infidelity.

And what peculiar obligations of gratitude result from such peculiar distinguishing favors ? Men have obliged you, and you feel the obligation. But can men, can angels, can the whole created universe bestow such gifts upon you, and make such provisions for you, as those which have been mentioned ? Gifts of infinite value, dear to the Giver; provisions for an everlasting state ; an everlasting state of as complete happiness as your nature, in its highest improvements, is capable of. These are favors worthy of God; favors that bespeak him God. And must he not then be the object of your supreme gratitude? Can anything in the world be more reasonable ?

And yet-hear, O earth, with horror ; be astonished, Oye heavens, at this: be ye horribly afraid ! how little gratitude does God receive from our world after all! How little gratitude from you, on whom these favors are showered down with distinguished profusion! not many of you neglect the unspeakable gift of God, Jesus Christ, as well as that salvation which he bought with his blood ? Do you not ungratefully neglect the means of your salvation, and resist the generous efforts that are used, from all quarters, to save you? 0! the mountainous load of ingratitude that lies upon you! enough to sink the whole world into the depth of hell.

But I must now address such of you, who are still more deeply obliged to your divine Benefactor, and whose ingratitude therefore is black and horrid; I mean such of you who not only have shared in the blessings and deliverances of life, and lived under the advantages of a dispensation of grace, but have experimentally known the love of God to your souls in a manner peculiar to yourselves, and are actually entitled to all the unknown blessings prepared for those that love him. If I

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am so happy as to belong to your number, I am sure I am so unhappy as to share deeply with you in the guilt, the black guilt of ingratitude. When you were dead in trespasses and sins, God quickened you, out of his great love wherewith he loved you. When you were rushing on towards destruction, in the enchanting paths of sin, he checked your mad career, and turned your faces heavenward. When you were sunk into sorrows, borne down with a sense of guilt, and trembling every moment with the fears of immediate execution, he relieved you, led you to Jesus, and, as it were, lodged you safe in his arms. When dismal glooms have again gathered upon your minds, and overwhelming fears rushed again upon you like a deluge, he has relieved you again by leading you to the same almighty and ever-constant Savior. When your graces and virtues have withered in the absence of the Sun of righteousness, he has again risen upon you with healing in his wings, and revived your languishing souls. He has shed abroad his love in your hearts, which has made this wretched wilderness a paradise to you. He has, at times, afforded you, as you humbly hoped, joy and peace in believing; yea, even caused you to rejoice with joy unspeakable, and full of glory. He has met you in your retirements, and allowed you to converse with him in his ordinances, with the heart of a friend. He has, as it were, unlocked his peculiar treasures to enrich you, and given you an unshaken title to the most glorious inheritance of the saints of light. He has made you his own, his own in a peculiar sense ; his people, his friends, his children. You are indeed his favorites: you were even so, long before time began. He loved you with an everlasting love, therefore with lov. ing kindness has he drawn you: and having loved you once, he will love you always, and he will continue in his love to all eternity. “Neither life, nor death, things present, nor things to come, shall ever be able to separate you from his love.” Rom. viii. 38, 39. His love to you is an unbounded ocean, that spreads over eternity, and makes it, as it were, the channel of the ocean of your happiness. In you he intends to show to all worlds what glorious creatures he can form of the dust, and of the polluted fragments of degenerate human nature. What is all the profession of kings to their favorites,

what are all the benefactions of creatures, nay, what are all the bounties of the divine hand itself within the compass of time, when compared to these astonishing, unparalleled, immortal, infinite, God-like favors? They all dwindle into obscurity, like the stars of night in the blaze of noon.

And now I am almost afraid to turn your thoughts to inquire, what return you have made for all these favors, lest you should not be able to bear the shock. You know

you have a thousand times repeated Hezekiah’s offence. I need not be particular. Your conscience accuses you, and points out the particulars; and I shall only join the cry of conscience against you. O! the ingratitude! O! the base, _vile, unnatural,

0 horrid, unprecedented ingratitude! From you your God might have expected better things; from you, whom he has so peculiarly, so infinitely obliged, and whose hearts he has made capable of generous sensations. But 0! the shocking, horrid ingratitude !—Let our hearts burst into a flood of sorrows at the thought. They may be justly too full to allow us to speak much upon it; but, O! they can never be too full of shame, confusion, and tender relentings for the crime. Methinks the thought must break the hardest heart among

us.

Let me now add a consideration, that gives an astonishing emphasis to all that has been said. All this profusion of mercy, personal and relative, temporal and spiritual, is bestowed upon creatures that deserve not the least mercy ; creatures that deserve to be stripped naked of every mercy; nay, that deserve to be made miserable in time and eternity ; creatures that deserve not to breathe this vital air, to tread the ground, or drink the stream that runs waste through the wilderness, much less to enjoy all the blessings which the infinite merit of Jesus could purchase, or the infinite goodness of God can bestow; creatures that are so far from deserving to be delivered from the calamities of life, that they deserve to have them all heightened and multiplied, till they convey them to the more intolerable punishments of hell; creatures that are so far from making adequate returns, that they are perpetually offending their God to his face; and every day receiving blessings from him, and every day sinning against him. O! astonishing ! most aston

. ishing! This wonder is pointed out by Jesus Christ himself, who best knows what is truly marvellous. “The Most High," says he, “is kind to the unthankful and to the evil.” Luke vi. 35. “Your heavenly Father maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.” Matt. v. 45.

It need afford you no surprise, if my subject so overwhelms me, as to disable me from making a formal application of it. I leave you to your own thoughts upon it. And I am apt to think they will constrain you to cry out in a consternation with me, “0! the amazing, horrid, base, unprecedented ingratitude of man! and O! the amazing, free, rich, overflowing, infinite, unprecedented goodness of God! Let these two miracles be the wonder of the whole universe!"

One prayer, and I have done. May your divine Benefactor, among his other blessings, bestow upon us that of a thankful heart, and enable us to give sincere, fervent, and perpetual praise to his name, through Jesus Christ, his unspeakable gift! Amen.

SERMON XXVI.

THE SUFFERINGS OF CHRIST, AND THEIR CONSEQUENT JOYS

AND BLESSINGS.

ISAIAH LIII. 10, 11.- When thou shalt make his soul an of.

fering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied.*

This chapter contains a most lively and moving account of very tragical sufferings; and, if we have but a small share of humanity, we cannot hear it without be

The sermon is dated Hanover, (a county in Virginia,) July 11, 1756; and is evidently a Sacramental Discourse.

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