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man persevered in his prayer to God, and his cry was heard and answered. For some years he has been walking consistently as a Christian character, and giving satisfactory proof that he is a sheep in the fold of our blessed Shepherd.
My dear reader, you have as much need as the poor man to ask yourself, “ Am I a sheep or a goat?" Leave it not undecided. It is a question which must be settled sooner or later. Oh! then, make haste to enquire into your real state, before your doom is fixed for ever; think how awful your condition, if you are still a stranger to Christ as your Saviour, your Shepherd, to save and defend you from sin and all evil while on earth, and to conduct you to the fold above! Remember that you will, ere long, be summoned before the bar of God, “ and before him shall be gathered all nations”-you will be there too_"and be will separate them one from another as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats, and he will put his sheep on his right hand and the goats on his left! Then will he say unto them on his right hand, “Come, ye blessed children of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.” And oh! what an awful sentence will he pass on those who are on his left hand: “Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.” (Matt. xxv. 32.) And once passed, this sentence can never be recalled: there is no appeal from this court.
Oh! then, my friend, let me entreat you to be wise: bestir yourself to answer this question: beg of God to "search you, and shew you what wicked way there is in you.” Rest not satisfied because you are a good moral person-a regular Church-goer—a kind neighbour: you may be all this, and yet not one of Christ's sheep. See what Christ says of his sheep in John X. 27. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” Now, do you
hear his voice? Christ has spoken to you many times, and is still speaking, by his written word-by his ministers-by his providences. Do
listen to his voice, and follow his commands, or are you still a goat, wandering upon the mountains of error? If so, the Gospel affords no food for you ; you are feeding upon the dry husks of earthly pleasure and gratification which this world offers, but which can never satisfy your immortal soul. Oh! remember that blessing is still held out to you; only trifle not with God's offer of it now-to-morrow may be too late— behold now is the accepted time, behold now is the day of salvation."
THE FEAR OF GOD AND THE FEAR OF MAN.
THE FEAR OF MAN. Tim JENKINS tells me he prays to God every morning before he goes to his work, and he kneels down every night with his wife and family. He advises me to do the same; but I cannot, for if my neighbours heard, how they would teaze and laugh at me " for pretending,” they would say, “to be so good;" and this I could not endure, for I like to be well thought of by every body. Tim also reads his Bible regularly every day, and is constant at church twice on the Sunday, and spends the rest of the day in reading the Scriptures, meditating, praying, and teaching his children. Now, I dare not do this either; for if I refused to take a walk with a neighbour, or go in the afternoon and have a little friendly chat with him, or indeed to go sometimes pleasuring on a fine Sunday, I would be afraid to meet him again: he would so jeer me. And when a friend asks me to go with him to the public-house, and take a glass or two, I do not like to say “ No,” for fear I should be considered foolish, and that they would scorn me; for I cannot bear the derision of my fellow-men ; therefore I must always do as others do, and make the wishes of man the rule of my conduct.
THE FEAR OF GOD.
Whatever John Wilke or any other man may say of me, I care not, if I feel I walk in the fear and love of God. 66 The fear of man bringeth a snare;" therefore I abhor it. " The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom ;" therefore I love it. The fear of man made Saul sin against God, which caused the Lord to rend his kingdom from him. The same sin I wish to avoid ; not for fear of being deprived of earthly kingdoms—for I do not possess them-but lest I thereby lose an inheritance in the heavenly king. dom. I therefore am determined, in humble reliance on divine grace, to walk stedfastly in the way of righteousness, to pray, read my Bible, to keep holy the Sabbath-day, to avoid wicked company, and, if I am scorned for these things, I can say, in the strength of the Lord, they shall not move me.
Why need I fear when I have the promise of my Saviour: “ Whosoever shall confess me before men, him also will I confess before my Father in heaven.” Knowing this, the ridicule, the jests, and sneers of men are nothing to me: I heed them not: but this I fear-to hurt my fellow-creatures by thought, word, or deed, willingly; for I should love them, as I wish to be loved by Him who made us all, and commanded us to love one another.
"PASS THE TIME OF YOUR SOJOURNING HERE IN FEAR.
DEAR READERS, are we such sojourners ? then let us live as 80journers ought to do. Long schemes! away with them; and much expectation from the future ! let us die to it; and entanglement with this poor wretched world, beyond what the Lord lays upon us ! let us turn as from a viper. Sojourners! well, then, let us live as pilgrims ought to live_live in tabernacles, like men that are in haste_ready to depart and be with Christ, which is far better.” Oh! what proof ought we to give of it, when the men of the world would entangle us, and when low professors would entangle us, and sometimes mistaken saints would entangle us toð, and put nets around our feet, and fetters and manacles! Ah! what answer ought we to give ? I am a "sojourner;" I am travelling on to my home; I am soon to be with Christ. And if I meet with rough things by the way, with painful things, and bitter things, and crooked things—things painful to endure to flesh-aye, and to spirit too--disappointment not only from the world, but (that which cuts us most) from saints ; well, but this is my comfort: I am a sojourner; I am travelling home; I shall soon be with Christ. Oh! what a holy cheerfulness, and what an unearthly-mindedness, ought to mark our conversation. There is something in the very name, “sojourner," that ought to be dear to your heart and my heart. Sojourners here ; travelling home to God; soon to see him ; soon to see Christ; soon to be with him; soon to behold him and be like him; soon never to sin against him more. Ah! blessed prospect; “never, (as Newton says,) never to grieve any more by my sins the bosom in which I lie. Blessed anticipation ! what manner of persons ought we to be in all holy conversation and godliness !"
Oh, what men of prayer ought we to be! Making every thing in our sojourning a cause for fresh application to Christ. Is it smooth? that I may not slumber. Is it rough? that I may not despond. Do I meet with unkindness ? that I may not sink. Do I meet with smiles ? that I may not be lifted up. And, above all things, to be urgent in this to be more truly like Godia conformed to his image ---drinking into bis Spirit-and following the footsteps of his Son.
Dear readers, live in the region of a glorious eternity. Oh! it were well if you and I had this ever before us. Here I am a sojourner: I live for heaven!
A PRAYER. THE COMMAND.—“Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks."
1 Thes. v. 17, 18. THE PROMISE._“If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.”—
John xiv. 14. The THREATENING.–“Pour out thy fury upon the Families that call
not on thy name."_JER. X, 25. O God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Ghost, Three Persons and One Jehovah, have mercy upon me a miserable sinner. Suffer me not to mock thee with my lips, but give me grace to worship thee in the beauty of holiness. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Enable me to feel
my spiritual disease by nature, and my recovery by grace; and 0! save me from the wrath to come. Thou knowest every thought, hearest every word, and seest every action, and I have broken thy commandments times without number; blot out, therefore, my sins, I beseech thee, by the precious blood of Jesus. And because heaven is a prepared place for prepared persons-and it is written, “ Without holiness no man shall see the Lord”-do thou sanctify me by the Holy Spirit as my meetness for eternal glory, and clothe me with Christ's righteousness as my alone title to it. Give me grace to fight manfully against sin, the world, and the devil, being Christ's faithful soldier and servant unto my life's end. Enlighten my understanding to understand the Scriptures, and make them profitable to my eternal salvation, through faith in Christ Jesus. May I daily take thy Word as a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my paths, esteeming it sweeter than honey and the honeycomb, and dearer than thousands of gold and silver. Bless the rising generation with its saving knowledge, and grant them, through its means, the unsearchable riches of Christ. Make me thankful, O Lord, for my blessings, temporal and spiritual, knowing that of mercies I have infinitely more, and of trials infinitely less, than I deserve. Give me grace to love thee with my whole heart, and to give up myself unreservedly to thy service. Bless, I beseech thee, my relations, friends, and enemies, in time and eternity: make them living branches of Jesus the true Vine. Extend thy favours to our guilty land; direct its Rulers to promote the welfare of the people, and the glory of thy holy Name. Have mercy on the sick and afflicted, and sanctify to them their trials. Look down with compassion upon a world lying in the wicked one, and daily add numbers, both of Jews and Gentiles, to thy spiritual Church. For this end, O Lord, be pleased to prosper all Societies that are formed for their benefit. Show to them that be in error the light of thy truth; and hasten that glorious period, when the whole earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the seas. And, finally, at the last great and terrible day, when the elements shall melt with fervent heat, and all mankind shall stand before the judgment seat of Christ, grant that I, and all for whom I ought to pray, may hear the joyful sentence, “Come, ye blessed children of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.” I humbly ask these blessings for the alone sake and merits of Jesus Christ, my blessed Saviour and Redeemer. Amen. - "Our Father which art in heaven," &c.
ENCOURAGEMENT TO REAL PRAYER, FROM EVERY BOOK
IN THE BIBLE. Gen. xxxi. 24-29 Isaiah xxxviii. 1-5 Romans x. 12, 13 Exod. ii. 23-25 Jer. xxix. 12
1 Cor. xv. 57 Lev. ix. 22-24 Lam. iii. 22-25 2 Cor. xii. 7-10 Num. xvi. 44-48 Ezek. xxxvi. 37 Gal. vi. 7-9 Deut. ix. 18-20 Dan. vi. 10-23 Eph. vi. 18-20 Josh. X. 12-14 Hosea xiv. 1-8 Phil. iv. 6, 7 Judges x. 15, 16 Joel ii. 32
Col. iv. 2, 3, 12 Ruth ii. 12 Amos v. 4
1 Thess. v. 17 1 Sam. i. 27, 28 Obadiah 17
2 Thess. ii. 1, 2 2 Sam. xii. 13 Jonah ii. 1-10 1 Tim. ii. 1-8 1 Kings xvii. 20-22 Micah vii. 7-9 2 Tim. i. 3 2 Kings xiii. 4 Nahum i. 7
Titus ii. 7,8 1 Chron, xxi. 26, 27 Hab. jii. 2-18 Philemon 4 2 Chron. xxx. 18-20 Zeph. iii. 8-12 Hebrews iv. 15, 16 Ezra ix. 5-9 Haggai i. 12, 13 James i, 5-8 Neh. ii. 446 Zech. ix. 12
1 Peter iii. 12 Esther vii. 3-5 Malachi iii. 16, 17 2 Peter i. 10 Job xxii. 27
Matthew vii. 7-11 1 John v. 14, 15 Psalm xxxiv. 4-19 Mark v. 22-42 2 John 8 Prov. ii. 2-5 Luke i, 9-13 3 John 2 Eccles. viii. 12 John xiv. 13, 14 Jude 20 (Marg.) Song Sol. iv, 16. v. 1 Acts xii. 5--11 Rev, vüi. 3, 4