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version. And shall heaven and earth attend us, shall God, and Christ, and angels, and men, be so much engaged in our favour, and will we, amidst such care and pains, neglect so great a salvation ?
8. To engage us to be real Christians, and to set about this great work in good earnest, consider that God will reward all men according to their works. He that sows sparingly must reap sparingly, and he that never sows, but neglects these calls, can never reap. No saint ever repented his labour or his love to God or to mankind; even the afflictions of the believer work for him an exceeding great and an eternal weight of glory. But, alas, how many live under the melting sounds of the Gospel, and stop their ears! How busied are they about the world, till they lose their souls ! How many are now in flames, that despised or neglected Christ and his offers, and would not avoid their fate! This course is safe, because it is appointed by God; it is honourable, for it makes us his sons; it is necessary, for without it there is no salvation. It is a course that all will some time sooner or later approve, though it may be greatly neglected while God waits to be gracious. O, then, my friends, believe that God calls you, and be obedient; begin to examine your ways, and be most concerned about your eternal welfare. God has resolved that heaven cannot, will not be had on easier terms. You must be born again, or you cannot enter into the kingdom. You must strive to enter, must run so as to obtain. You must become holy, or you cannot be happy, for without holiness no man shall see the Lord. You must set your affections on the things above, and seek first, and above all things, the kingdom of heaven and his righteousness, and must labour for the food that endures to everlasting life, or you will be shut out into outer darkness. These are the terms mentioned in Scripture, and such the calls, and such the messages that we have from God; and if, after all, any of us dare continue in sin, or do nothing for our happiness, how shall we escape, since we neglect such heavenly calls and so great a salvation ?
Application.—Having laid so many and so weighty considerations before you, to engage every one to seek the Lord, I doubt not but every one that attended is convinced of the reasonableness and necessity of complying with them. But the only question will be, who neglects to obey God, or neglects or despises his calls ? To such, and to such only, are my arguments suited. And that every man and woman were of that number that sought God sincerely ; that sought him in the life of Gospel ordinances through a Redeemer; that sought him with prayer and supplication, and with much tenderness and holiness of life! But are you all such? Can you appeal to God that this is your Christ ? that you have not only sought him, but can testify that you have found him to your great comfort ? But some possibly dare not claim this for their Christ; some of you have stopped your ears, and may possibly continue to disregard all these weighty considerations. My text is a message and a call from God to four sorts of sinners.
1. To such as are openly loose and profane, and live in unknown sin or the neglect of known duty; that know that they seldom pray to God; that they never devoted themselves to his service; that never fled to Christ for pardon and grace, nor ever knew what it was to come under Gospel rules. Do you think that you are safe, or that you have felt the power of Christ's Spirit on your souls? If not, why do you promise yourselves happiness if you continue longer in sin ? Such want words to pray to God, but want none to make known their distress to a physician when sick, to a protector when threatened, or to a wealthy friend when in want. Some of you will not pray or regard the common duties of religion ; some of you never examine the state of your souls ; some will not be at the pains to read the Scripture, and many live in sin. Is this the Christian life, or the way to happiness? To all such, I offer these considerations. You are the persons I press and invite to seek the Lord while he may be found.
2. This call of God is to all the careless and worldly-minded, who are so immersed in the cares of this life, that they neglect the one thing needful.
3. To the self-deceiving, lazy, formal professors; to you is this invitation and solemn call, who run the round of duties, who read, and hear, and talk of religion, but never felt its power in your souls.
4. These considerations are offered even to the godly themselves, who are too careless about their souls ; who are fallen from their first love ; who do duty with great carelessness and indifference. How many know not the state of their souls, and take no care to examine them! how many neglect Christ's stated ordinances and will not be persuaded to amend! Do you, will you, act this part, and expect joy or comfort ? or do you seek the Lord as you are here commanded ?
To all, let me apply the following admonitions: 1. Seek the Lord, for there is no other way to peace and happi
2. Do you not take much pains for the world ? and why will you pot do as much for eternity ? Every shop, every field is busy for the bread that perishes, and why not for what endures for eternity?
3. Great expectations require suitable endeavours.
4. How earnest are godly parents, ministers, angels, Christ, and God Almighty for your conversion, and how much in earnest are devils and wicked men for your ruin ! and shall heaven, and earth, and hell be in earnest about your soul, and will you greatly neglect it ?
5. Were the graves to open, were you to ste all that in life neglected or embraced these offers, would you not fear and tremble ? Did you see the process of the awful judgment and the direful effects of wickedness and unbelief, or was hell laid open before
you, how would you be convinced of the necessity of seeking God! But these things you shall see with terror and amazement, unless ye now repent.
6. Did God appear as on Sinai; did Christ ; if Christ again as among the Jews; if Paul preached to you as to Agrippa, till you trembled, would you dare to disobey? Yet some disobeyed all these heavenly calls. Nay, you cannot think you would disobey a messenger sent from the dead; and why will you disobey the voice of reason and revelation? They are the voice of God; and if
you will not hear them, you would not hear one risen from the dead.
7. Must you not some time begin to seek God, and why not today? If you intend ever to obey God, obey him by hearing while he calls to-day. Did you not use to call on God by prayer ? begin to pray to-day. Did you never know your own heart-plagues, or that you did
did amiss ? Take a serious hour to examine what duties you neglect or sins you commit. You that never gave yourselves up to God, in the obedience of the Gospel, this day join yourselves to him in the everlasting love-feast. Let him that neglects ordinances, that has fallen from his first love, or, that lives in doubts about his future happiness, be intreated to begin this day to amend. Return, ye backsliding children, and he will heal your backslidings.
THOUGHTS CONCERNING THE PRESENT EXTRAOR
DINARY REVIVAL OF RELIGION.
(Continued from p. 199.) A REMARKABLE feature in the present religious movement is the great extent of the work. It is not confined to a single section of the country, nor to a single Christian denomination; but, with some exceptions, it extends alike to all. From the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, from the Northern Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico, there is not a State or Territory, in which the gracious steppings of Jehovah have not been more or less visible. If any one great centre can be designated as the radiant point from which this mighty movement has proceeded, it is the principal commercial metropolis of the United States, the City of New York. But the work has been so nearly simultaneous in different localities remote from each other, in cities, villages, and country places, as to indicate that the influences of the Holy Spirit have had less resemblance to the rivulet which waters and fertilizes successively different districts of country, than to the dews and rains, which fall in the same months and days at all points of the compass. So also with regard to different Christian Churches. It would not be possible to trace its commencement to any one or two religious de. nominations, from whom instrumentally the others have received the blessing. All Evangelical Churches have enjoyed in common this merciful visitation, coming like the showers of heaven, direct from the throne of God.
A definite statement of the number of conversions is yet impossible, both from the want of sufficient data, and of sufficient time to test their genuineness; and also from the pleasing fact that hopeful conversions are now occurring every week in many parts of our land. A month ago an intelligent and pious layman in New York, estimated the conversions in that city at 50,000; and a judicious clergymen in Philadelphia, has recently published as his own opinion, from statistics collected from all sections of the country, that not less than 200,000, within the last six months, have passed from a state of spiritual death, to that of a new and heavenly life.
These conversions have not been restricted to any class, age, or sex. The aged and the young, husbands and wives, parents and children, merchants and mechanics, physicians and their patients, lawyers and clients, independent farmers and day-labourers, judges and jurors, statesmen and private citizens, sea-captains and their crews, watchmen and firemen, the moral and the vicious, college students and pupils in academies and primary schools, Sundayschool teachers and little juveniles, male and female, under their instruction.
The following statements are given as examples, which might be extended indefinitely, showing the extent of this work. They are taken froin daily and weekly papers, which have contained more or less of the same kind of intelligence for three or four months past.
THE REVIVAL IN NEW YORK,
In all parts of the city the meetings continue to enjoy manifestations of the Spirit of God. The cases of anxious inquiry reported and hopeful conversion are many and deeply interesting, being found in all classes of the community, and almost all grades of sinners. Some merchants have set apart private rooms in their warehouses where their clerks are in the habit at certain hours of meeting for prayer. The revival has been peculiarly precious in its influence upon persons belonging to the mercantile community; but it has also reached the masses,-mechanics of all kinds, and others whose business can scarcely be defined, and of these multitudes have been hopefully converted.
REVIVAL IN A PRINTING OFFICE.
Prayer meetings have been held daily at one of the large printing offices in New York City, since the 6th of March, with increasing interest. At the commencement of the meetings there were but four or five converts, with a very few participants, and now the number ranges as high as twelve or fourteen. The interest manifested at those meetings is very great. One of the recent converts says: “What are we to expect, when printing offices are converted into religious chapels? It is, as far as my knowledge extends, unprecedented in the history of any country, and will, no doubt, astonish many readers." As the meetings are held between the hours of 12 and 1 o'clock, some of the men go without their dinner for the sake of attending them.
To specify the particular churches in the city which have been or are now blessed with this visitation of Divine mercy, would occupy many pages. Almost all religious denominations have been moved by a fresh impulse to pray and labour for the salvation of those around them, and large accessions have been made to their respective communions. Even professed Universalists are reported to have become in some instances earnest seekers for renewing grace; and not a few of the seed of Abraham have embraced the Christian faith. Concerning the Jews, the following interesting statement has been published.
Many Jews have participated in the operations of the present revival movement. They have been in attendance at nearly all the meetings in the various parts of the city, and have presented numerous requests for prayers in their behalf. In the Twentieth Ward, quite a number of Jews, of both sexes, have gone over to the profession of the Christian faith. One convert is about to go forth as a missionary among his own people. Many Jewish families have sent their children to Christian Sunday-schools. At a meeting in Burton's old theatre, a few days ago, a Jew complained that the seed of Abraham had been neglected in the prayers of his Gentile brethren. He said that a class numbering as many as thirtyfive or thirty-six thousand souls, in the population of this city, surely had a high claim upon the interest of Christians in heart. He begged that in future they be prayed for at every meeting. In Brooklyn, an entire family of Jews were recently led to embrace Christianity.
In the State of New York, few spots have been left without a refreshing from the presence of the Lord. In Albany, the capital of the State, and in the neighbouring cities of Troy and Schenectady, many have been added to the churches; and, proceeding from those points, west to Buffalo, three hundred miles distant, or south, one hundred and fifty miles, to New York City, many cities, villages, and country places are found to have put on a spiritual verdure, more fragrant than the blossoms of spring.