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fure that there is no heaven; but he is fure that if there be, he has refigned up all his pretenfions to the joys of it, and must never expect to be an inhabitant of that happy place. He cannot be fure that there is no hell; but if there fhould, what a condition must he then be in?-He has justly entitled himself to all the pains of it; he has procured himself a place "where is weeping "and wailing, and gnashing of teeth; where the worm never dies: "where the fire is never quenched."-He cannot be fure, that there is no God; that there are no glorious angels; but if there should, he is sure that he is not qualified for fuch bleffed company; he has no claim to join in their triumphant hallelujahs; he cannot be fure there are no demons, but should there be fuch fpirits, what company has he provided for himself?-What dreadful difcord, what infernal converfation must he partake in?-What ghaftly phantoms, what tremendous apparitions, has he provided to shock his affrighted foul upon her landing on the dreadful abyfs of a never-ending eternity?
But let us turn our eyes from fo gloomy a fcene; God grant that we may never behold it !—and turn them to one more delightful.-Let us see what trivial hazards the believer runs, and what the glorious prospects are which he has in view. He who believes, that is, who believes to purpose, will take all poffible care to order his behaviour in fuch a manner as to entitle him to a happy hereafter. Now fuppofing the worst, suppose there be no fuch thing, he has notwithstanding enjoyed a moft agreeable. delufion, and is, even in that cafe, upon a level with his oppofite. -He has had moreover a fovereign antidote against all worldly. forrows; whenever he was oppreffed with the load of any. affliction, he could eafe his burden, by reflecting, that the life of man: was but of short duration;-that the time would foon come, when his forrows would have a happy period. He could fay with comfort, that he could be miferable but for a fhort fpace of time
that he fhould foon arrive at the goal of death; and though his race had been hard and rugged, though he met with many cruel, nay, thocking disappointments, yet the glorious reward was at hand; the grave could not fright him with its horrors, fince his foul could not be mingled with the duft;-that would return to its almighty Creator, and reft with him in never-ending joys.Are not these reflections of a very amiable nature?Is not this fituation of the mind moft devoutly to be cherished?-And are not fuch thoughts as these in every ones power to enjoy? When the believer fees death at hand, he looks on it as the approach of his new birth; he waits with impatience for his glorious change, when he hall quit this vile earth, when he shall drop this load of flesh, and with glorious and immortal angels forever live in blissful regions, adoring his almighty benefactor, his ever-glorious God, his triumphant Redeemer.
Another reason why this great truth is fo little reflected on, as we find it generally is, may be the pride of one fet of men, and the weakness of another: the pride of wit, or what is too often called fo. The poets and other writers of romance have contrived fo many representations of the behaviour and condition of departed fouls, that their weak brethren have been apt to think the whole only a poetical fiction.-The first view of a future state must fill the mind with awful thoughts of what may be our portion there: but we have been diverted from what ought to inspire our dread or hope. By the buffoonery of fuch vain fcribblers, we have been induced to view this truth in fo many lights, that the diffipated and unthoughtful are confounded, and utterly at a lofs to determine what they ought to believe. They have made the ideas of death, heaven and hell fo familiar to their readers, that it will require a great deal of time, and much force of argument to recover the minds of men to that folemnity of thought which a proper view of thefe things muft of neceffity occafion. It is upon this account that
I have spent so much time in illuftrating this interesting truth, this basis of all religion and virtue; for furely every man, who is fully convinced, that the next stage on which he fhall appear muft be an everlasting one, will be easily induced to take care that he enters upon it with as much credit as poffible.
To conclude;—I hope I have demonftrated to fatisfaction, that God Almighty created man after his own image, in regard to his foul; and after the likeness of his other creatures, in regard to life, fenfe, and motion;-mortal,-so far as he is like the creature; -and immortal fo far as he bears the ftamp of the Creator:— that he who views the various works of nature, muft acknowledge the existence of the Supreme Being; that he who feeth the order of the world, the proportion of man, and the harmony fo confpicuous in both cannot doubt but there is an over-ruling providence; fince it would be abfurd to think, that God who created them with fuch beauty, would leave them to the blind guidance of unthinking chance. In fhort, whoever seriously confiders these things will be fully convinced, THAT THERE WILL BE A LIFE
AFTER THIS, WHERE THEY THAT BE WISE SHALL SHINE AS
"Or as before the throne of God I ftand,