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covenant-I will go down with thee into Egypt, and I will also furely bring thee up again. I will ranfom thee from the power of the grave, I will redeem thee from death. O death, I will be thy plague, O grave, I will be thy destruction. The hour is coming in which all that are in the grave shall hear the voice of the Son of God, and shall come forth. I faw the dead fmall and great stand before God, and the feagave upthe dead which were in it, and death and hell gave up the dead which were in them. I would not have you ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are. asleep, that ye forrow not even as others which have no hope, for if we believe that Fefus died and rose again, even fo them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
With these and such like promises does God assure our hearts against the
fear of death: And we need them all; for when the vital stream retires from its wonted current, have we not some reason to apprehend it may. totally withdraw itself, and leave us without any confciousness of existence? What fh.. ]] we then oppose to the strong conviation of sense and feeling? What but the tronger evidence of the word of God:_For though the mountains depart and the hills be removed, my kindnefs shall not depart from thee, neither the covenant of my peace be removed, faith. the Lord that hath mercy on thee.
Zion hath faid, the Lord hath forfaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me ; but can a woman
forget her fucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb; yea, they may forget, yet will not I forget thee. When my father and ту mother forfake me, the Lord taketh me up. Though he slay me, yet will I put my trust in him.
Happy he, like aged Jacob, who, as life draws towards its close, can turn upon his bed and worship God; who, all his worldly affairs being settled, has nothing more to do, but to possess his soul in patience till it shall please God to receive it. Calm and resigned he goes down to the grave in peace, as the sun sets without a cloud : Sure as that sun shall rise again, is his hope; nay surer still, for we have only a natural probability for the one, but the promise of God for the other. Sure as the night is followed by the morning, so sure shall the night of death be followed by the morning of the resurrection : Heaviness may endure for a feafon, but joy cometh in the morning.
But here, let us take notice, It is only the righteous that hath this hope in his death. To the wicked, no gleam
of sun-shine gild the dark chambers of the grave - black and dismal is his prospect, as the gloomy fepulchre that awaits his breathless corpse. Egypt is his burying-place; his hopes and his wishes all centre in this world, and must be buried with him: In that heavenly Canaan, that promised reft which remaineth for the people of God, he hath neither portion or lot. Shall he plead the gospel covenant of mercy ? - that covenant he hath fhamefully broken and violated: He is no son of Abraham's faith, no heir with Jacob of the inheritance of his fathers; driven away from his present possessions and without any future hope in reversion! Would we escape his end, we must shun those evil courses that lead to it; like Jacob, we must consider our present life, as a pilgrimage; the world in which we live, as a strange country, through
which we have to pass, before we find our home;—and Heaven, as the land of our inheritance, purchased for us, promised to us, and of which, nothing but our own wilfulness and obstinacy can deprive us.
The happiness of the righteous is thus described by the Pfalmift - Blejfed is the man whofe strength is in thee, in whose heart are thy ways ; who going through the vale of misery use it for a well, and the pools thereof are filled with water ; they will go on from strength to strength, and unto the God of Gods appeareth every one of them in Sion. The plain meaning of which words is thus given by an able commentator_“ The present 66 world is to us this vale of misery; in " our passage through it, we are re“ freshed by the streams of divine
grace flowing from the great foun