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then all fears were removed. Death was not terrible ; but rather, viewed as a messenger of peace, gladly to be welcomed. The cares and troubles of this world were little thought of, and the chief care was to approve myself to God.
But careless walking with God, worldly engagements, and neglected means of grace, soon damp the holy flame of first life and zeal.
O may I hear my Saviour's admonition, and obey his direction--nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love ; remember from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do thy first works. Quicken me again, blessed Saviour. Let thy death be so brought to my remembrance at thy table, that my soul may now again be strengthened, refreshed, and revived ; yea, restored to more than first zeal and love.
1 Cor. xi, 31. If we would judge ourselves, we should
not be judged. I do indeed desire to come to thee, O my God, selfcondemned, and self-abased, acknowledging my many sins committed day by day against thee; and that I deserve thy wrath and displeasure. I do desire now to humble my soul before thee, not in words only, but in a deep conviction of heart, that I am verily guilty in thy sight.
According then to this thy faithful promise, O my God, judge me not. Deal not with me according to my sins; but let me be justified freely by thy grace, through that redemption which I pray thee to give me grace, in a right spirit, to commemorate, and on which all my hopes are founded.
ACTS OF FAITH.
Psalm xxxi, 19. O how great is thy goodness !
The love of God has indeed abounded towards me in innumerable ways, both in temporal comforts and spiritual privileges. But especially am I indebted to his long suffering and long-sparing mercy, that I have not been cut off in the midst of my sins : the fountain opened for sin and uncleanness is yet flowing, yet accessible, and that for me; the bread of life is yet tendered to me; the means of grace, and the hope of glory are yet continued. There is still of
access to the throne of grace, and the sure mercies of Christ may yet be obtained. Through the same goodness, I have another opportunity of approaching his mercyseat, and seeking an interest in his redemption. Others have been called to the eternal world to render in their solemn account, and I have been spared a little longer to recover my strength. I will go, then, and cast myself under the wings of the Sun of Righteousness. I will take refuge in his Name, and now seek his salvation.
Psalm xlii, 11. Why art thou cast down, O my soul?
My sins are indeed many, and grievous; but shall I spend all my time in dwelling only on them, and shall I thus forget my Redeemer ? Know I not that Jesus is able and willing to deliver me from this state? They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick; but I, being sick, even from the crown of the head to the sole of the foot, so much so as not to be sensible of the greatness of the disease, and some
tines to have lost the desires of being healed; I have infinite need of the Divine Physician.
O heavenly Saviour, thou that art able and willing to save all those who come unto thee, have compassion upon me,
I have as much need of thy gracc as the vilest publican and sinner, for without that grace I perish for ever. Thou didst not reject them; O reject not me. . My disease is as bad as the worst leprosy. If thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. Blinded eyes, deaf ears, crippled limbs, helpless sickness, and a dead corpse, are true pictures of my spiritual state. I come as they of old came-Jesus, thou Son of David, have mercy on me! Jesus, Lamb of God, that takest away the sin of the world, have mercy on me! Speak the word only, and thy servant shall be healed!
Psalm 1xi, 2. When my heart is overwhelmed, lead me
to the Rock that is higher than I.
I should have perished in my sins, but for redeeming mercy and love. ' Blessed be God for Jesus the rock of my salvation. This rock it is that defends me from the justly-merited and stormy billows of divine wrath. The fury of the tempest, that dreadful vengeance which would for ever have overwhelmed me, did he encounter, that I might be safe. Now, sheltered by this Rock, though I may hear the roaring and dashing of that terrible sea, which, if unprotected, would have, swept me away into endless ruin, yet am I entirely safe; not a wave shall come near me.
every trying hour, lead me to this rock, that Jesus may ever be my hiding place and my covert. Here only I am
secure. He is unchangeable and immoveable; the same yesterday, to-day, and for ever.
2 Cor. v, 21. He was made sin for us. The cross of Christ shews me the evil of sin in the strongest tight. The punishment of fallen angels, the deluge, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, disease and death, and the eternal punishment of hell, tell me the evil of sin very strongly, but the cross of Christ yet more. " To see the son OF GOD praying, crying, trembling, bleeding, dying; God hiding his face from him; the earth trembling under him; the sun veiled, the rocks rent, and darkness all around him ;'' how can we but, when we know that this was in consequence of man's transgression, cry out,Did sin do all this! Did sin nail him, whose titles are “The Mighty God," “ The Everlasting Father," “ The Prince of Glory,” to the accursed tree? O, who can estimate the demerit of sin, its high provocations, its exceeding sinfulness! Here, then, let me take a view of sin. If others view its temporary pleasures and momentary advantages, let me estimate its incalculable mass of evil as viewed in the cross of Christ, as manifested in his being made sin for us.
EVIDENCES OF FAITH.
2 Cor. xiii, 5. Examine yourselves, whether ye be in
the faith. On the review of my state before God, what says my conscience? will God acquit or condemn me? If I am to be judged only by his holy law, I am utterly condemned. I have transgressed every precept. I am
condemned every hour, and am most justly sentenced to everlasting destruction, But I trust I am not under the law, but under grace; and that Christ hath borne the punishment of my sins. I know that he came into the world to save sinners, and I feel that I am a sinner. I trust also that his Spirit has taught mé to mourn for sin, and to fly to Christ for refuge. Have I not often, in my secret retirements, cast myself entirely on God's mercy in Christ Jesus? Have I not laid claim to, and pleaded his precious promises ? Surely, I have earnestly asked for spiritual blessings, and he that cannot lie has promised that I shall receive. I think I see some marks of a change of heart, and some appearances of the fruit of the Spirit. It is my desire that my thoughts may be spiritual and holy. I seek God in secret, and I do not allow of known sin. These evidences (in much imperfection as they are in me) strengthen my hope ; but yet I would rest every expectation, both for pardon and acceptance, for justification and sanctification, only on Christ, my Lord.
Ps. xvi, 5. The Lord is the portion of my inheritance
and of my cup, thou maintainest my lot. Where a man's treasure is, there is his heart. Is then the Lord ever in my heart? He who died for ine ought to be constantly in all my thoughts. What do I count then the chief joy of heatet? Is it not that there I shall be free from fears and doubts about my state, and for ever behold and praise my God? What do I count the chief joy on earth?
Is it pot the presence of the Lord in prayer? When in my devotions, or in reading the Scriptures, or singing Psalms, I am