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has afforded us the clearest light upon the subject, every ingenuous mind must acknowledge. The boasted wisdom of many of the ancient Philosophers, proves to us the limited faculties of man; and shows us how dependent we are upon religion for every information connected with the divine character.

Consult the school of Aristotle, and you will find, that so far from acknowledging God as the creator of all things, they maintained that the world was from eternity, and that every thing was what it now is. Listen to the school of Epicurus, and they will tell you that the universe was formed by a fortuitous concourse of atoms, which accidentally assumed the present form. Go into the city of Athens and see the blindness of that people at the period in which the Redeemer appeared. With all the aids they could obtain from human research, at Athens, a place considered as the empire of light, the monopoly of wisdom, behold them worshipping an unknown god; erecting altars to imaginary deities, and prostrating themselves at the feet of senseless idols. Christ Jesus came to give recovery of sight to the blind; to unveil to the view of man the great Eternal; to teach him the true philosophy;-" him, whom ye ignorantly worship," said the Apostle, " declare we unto you."

The declaration of the text, however, is not confined to blindness of that description; it embraces the case of those who close their eyes against the light of the Gospel-who would rush naked and defenceless into the presence of that God who out of Christ is a consuming fire; who would trust to the mercy of heaven, when that mercy is at variance with the attribute of divine justice; who will not accept of the offers of salvation upon Gospel terms; who deny that Being "who was made sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him;" who defer that pursuit of happiness until to-morrow, which should be commenced today; who resist the pleadings of divine grace, and set omnipotence at defiance. Such, beloved, is the case of the offender against God, and such was the situation of Paul himself; he saw no comeliness in the Saviour that he should


desire him; he trusted to his own righteousness; he expected that his own imperfect morality would secure the salvation of his soul; he was unwilling to submit to the empire of Jesus, or to be saved by his blood. But God who is rich in mercy, pitied his infatuation, and rescued him from destruction; his eyes were opened by the Spirit of God; the rays of redeeming love were reflected upon his mind, and the man who was engaged in levelling to the earth the system of Christianity, laid down the weapons of his rebellion at the foot of Calvary; embarked in the cause of the Gospel; "proclaimed among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, opening their eyes and turning them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God."

To conclude. "He came to heal the broken hearted." Should any of you be labouring under a conviction of sin should your minds be oppressed with sorrow at the recollection of your ingratitude to God; take comfort, I beseech you from the existence of that sorrow in your hearts, and fly in supplication to that Saviour who died for your salvation. It is through the influences of his Spirit that you have been brought to reflect; it is through the light of divine grace that you see your unworthiness, and that you feel weary and heavy laden. Christ thus forms the source of your relief, the present and eternal refuge of his people. Mourner in Zion, be at rest, for "blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted." The knowledge you possess of your unworthiness, is the greatest blessing God could have bestowed upon you; it has made you feel the value of the Saviour, and has led you to a throne of grace for mercy. Should any of you be convinced that you have been led captive by Satan; that you have listened to his temptations; that you have turned your backs upon God, and resisted the pleadings of his grace; that you have preferred the world to the duties of religion, fly to him who is mighty to save. Christ Jesus will deliver you from the tyranny of sin, and rescue you from the oppressive power

of Satan. "He came to preach deliverance to the cap


Should any of you be labouring under spiritual blindness, ignorant of the plan of redemption; should any of you wish to be instructed in the truths of Christianity; anxious to know the manner in which Jehovah can be just, and yet the justifier of him against whom the violated law of God pronounces destruction, fly to Jesus Christ and entreat for divine illumination; cry aloud, "Lord that I may receive my sight," and that Saviour who came to give recovery of sight to the blind, will hear your prayer and enable you to comprehend the plan of salvation, and see its perfect adaptation to the situation of all mankind.

Beloved, in the Redeemer there is salvation for all who will seek it in sincerity of heart; his blood will cleanse the most polluted, and render the vilest offender pure in the sight of God. "Seek him then while he may be found, call upon him while he is near," and you will discover that he is able and willing to save all men to the uttermost, who come unto God by him; seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them-he will afford you present comfort, and after death receive you into glory.


"God be merciful to me a sinner."-LUKE, Xviii. 13.

HUMILITY of heart is an unfailing attendant upon the religion of the Redeemer: it is the first effect produced in the mind by divine grace, and forms the best evidence we can give the world of our acquaintance with God and with ourselves. A self-justifying spirit flows not from the fountain of the Gospel: it is the offspring of human pride, the enemy of true religion. That person who really knows himself, and is thoroughly acquainted with his own heart, must be sensible that his imperfections are very numerous; and that his personal virtues fall so short of the purity of the Gospel, and the requisitions of the divine law, that he is indebted to the mercy of God for the continuance of his existence, and his escape from destruction.

Under a conviction of his own unworthiness, the sincere Christian always approaches the footstool of the Almighty; his own infirmities claim his continual attention; they engross so much of his thoughts, they appear so magnified to his view, that instead of condemning others, he thinks himself the least of all the saints, and pleads for forgiveness through the precious blood of Christ. Like the Centurion mentioned in the Gospel, he exclaims, "Lord I am not worthy thou shouldest come under my roof; speak the word only, and I shall be healed."

The farther that we advance in the divine life, the more do we become established in the principle of humility. The nearer that we approach the Almighty, and the more we study his perfections, the more sensible do we become to our own failings; the closer we draw to the light the more visible are our imperfections: our growth therefore in grace is always attended with an increase of humility. We compare our lives with the precepts of Scripture, and find them so deficient that the inquiry produces a lowliness of heart; we discover that we have no ground for boasting, but that we are really sinners and need cleansing in the blood of Christ.

That this view is correct, is fully illustrated in the parable before us; and as the representation was made by the Saviour himself, no one can doubt that the doctrine it contains is agreeable to the nature and attributes of God himself; purposely intended to check the advances of a selfrighteous spirit, and to countenance and support the convicted sinner in his humble approaches to a throne of grace. It shows the trembling penitent that, notwithstanding that pressure of sin which rests upon his conscience, notwithstanding that dread of Deity with which his mind is oppressed, and which renders him afraid to raise his eye to heaven, still the devout breathings of his broken heart will not be disregarded, nor the sighing of a contrite mind be overlooked; but before he calls, God will answer-while he is speaking God will hear, have mercy; pardon and forgive him.

In order to improve the subject, and to represent some of its beauties to your view, permit me to carry your attention to the sacred Temple.

"Two men went up to the Temple to pray; one a Pharisee, the other a Publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself; God I thank thee that I am not as other men are; extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this Publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess."

In all this Pharasaic harangue, there is not one essential

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