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of extending to the depth even of your own guilt, be it ever so awful, there is no spiritual life in you! Faith is a persuasion, that he can do what is to yourselves impossible; and the very subject of faith is the forgiveness of sin and the transformation of the sinner. then the number, the grievousness, the aggravating circumstances of your late apostasy to hinder you from believing in his goodness? Observe, how David anticipates, even at the very time, when his worst offences were fresh in his remembrance, a full restoration of the divine mercy! After strong and deep expressions of penitence, and even of selfabhorrence he says in his memorable fiftyfirst psalm-'Purge me with hyssop! and I 'shall be clean. Wash me! and I shall be 'whiter than snow. Create in me a clean 'heart, O God, and renew a right a right spirit 'within me! Cast me not away from thy presence, and take not thy holy spirit from 'me! Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation, and uphold me with thy free spirit! Then will I teach transgressors thy ways;

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' and sinners shall be converted unto thee.'

So also must you, if you would return to the way you have forsaken, believe against all impediments in the freedom of the divine love for you, and trust through that mercy, which brought your saviour to the cross, to be restored once more to the joy of salvation, to be upheld by the very spirit, whom you have banished by your impenitence, and to be even rendered instrumental through his grace to the conversion and establishment of others. You must in short lay hold more firmly on the hope of the gospel, and labor to recommend it more extensively in consideration of your past delinquencies: for Christ is willing to receive you back, if you will return to him; and it is only by your own impenitence and unbelief, that you can be deprived of the comfort, peace, and joy of his holy spirit.

I cannot close this part of my subject without again adverting to the value of the christian sacraments. David, when his crimes had been brought home to his conscience, first humbled himself before God. Then he arose from the earth, and washed, and anointed himself, and changed his apparel, and came into the

house of the lord, and worshipped. His worship was doubtless accompanied with sacrifice; and every sacrifice was a typical representation of that victim, whose meritorious offering we commemorate in the christian sacraments. It was from this act of devotion, that he proceeded with comfort and confidence to the composition of that fifty-first psalm, to which we have twice adverted. So also the christian should encourage himself in the lord, his God. The recollection of his baptismal privileges should strengthen him in the assurance, that he is not forsaken; and the renewal of his vows in the holy eucharist will bring God near to him, even when he most apprehends his estrangement, will make known to him with a confidence, not to be reached, except through means, which himself has ordained, that those very offences, which he now deplores, were expiated by the death of the saviour, and thus lead him to class the privilege of constant communion among the most cherished of his means of grace.

I have now shewn you, my brethren, some

general outline of the life of a christian. When we estimate the difficulties, the temptations, and the natural reluctance, arising from a sinful heart, by which this life is hindered, we may say with Solomon- Happy is the man, that 'feareth alway.' But yet on the other hand, when we think on the grace of our lord, Jesus Christ, on the purpose, for which he suffered, and on his readiness to receive even after the most grievous offences those, who have abused and neglected his mercy, provided they truly repent, and embrace his offered salvation, we may say on the other hand- Happy is the

man, that hopeth alway.' It is by these two anchors of the soul, that it is kept steady in the course of salvation. When we at the same time fear to offend him, and yet believe in the goodness, which forgives and overcomes our offences, we are then led in the way of life : and at our last hour also, when time is behind us, and eternity before, the dread of sin and the reliance on Christ must be, as it were, the two wings, on which the holy spirit of God will waft us over the abyss, which separates us from the mansions of bliss and glory.

SERMON XV.

Hebrews ix. 27, 28.

As it is appointed unto all men once to die, but after this the judgment, so Christ was once offered, to bear the sins of many; and unto them, that look for him, shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.

OUR inquiries my beloved brethren are now drawing to a close.

We began by investigating some of the evidences, which establish the existence of a supreme being, the creator and governor of the universe, of a being, infinite in power, wisdom, goodness, and every other moral excellence, who, though we see him not, and though too many of us continue strangers to his name, is

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