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sees that a rigid compliance with their ritual would be physically impossible. And, therefore, when the time for Shiloh's appearance drew near, it became, every year, more and more plain,-however slow some of that " peculiar people” were in learning the lesson,--that the ceremonial economy must come to an end ;-must, of course, yield to a system less restrictive in its character, and more fitted for “every kindred, and people, and nation, and tongue.”

Accordingly, when we examine the religion of Jesus Christ, in its New Testament form, we find it divested of every feature and circumstance adapted to confine it to any particular territory or people. Its doctrines, its worship, and its system of moral duty, are all equally adapted to universality. It teaches that God has made of one blood all nations of men to dwell on the face of the whole earth, Acts xvii. 26.That he is no respecter of persons, but that in every nation he that feareth God and worketh righteousness is accepted of him, Acts x. 34, 35.-That he is alike related to all the children of men, as their Creator, Preserver, and Benefactor; and that the high and the low, the rich and the poor, the monarch and the slave, all stand upon a level in his sight, and have all equal access, if penitent and believing, to the throne of his heavenly grace. It proclaims one method of justification for all classes of men ; one kind of preparation for heaven; and that not ceremonial, but moral and spiritual ; and one great code of moral duty, equally applicable to the learned and the ignorant, the polished and the rude, the civilized and the savage. And as all the great doctrines and principles of the religion of Christ are equally adapted to the whole human family; so the rational and benevolent laws,

to witness on earth the complete developement of “ the latter day glory;" yet let us rejoice in the assurance that it will come in due time, and in all its promised blessedness.

The vision is yet for an appointed time; but in the end it shall speak and not lie : though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry, Hab. ii. 3.

2. But further, our confidence that the religion of Christ will, one day, fill the whole earth with its glory, is confirmed by the consideration, that THIS RELIGION IS, IN ITS NATURE, ADAPTED ABOVE ALL OTHERS TO BE A UNIVERSAL RELIGION.

In all the forms of false religion with which our world is filled, there is something which renders them unfit or impracticable for universal adoption. Some are adapted to particular climates only; others to particular states of society; a third class to particular orders of men ; so that, in their very nature, they cannot be universal. Indeed none of the Pagans seem ever to have thought of a universal religion, as either to be expected or desired. Nay, even the true religion, as it appeared in its infant and ceremonial form, under the old economy, was not, in its external method of dispensation, adapted to be universal. For, not to mention many other circumstances, it required all its professors to go up “ three times a year” to the same temple to worship. And, accordingly, long before the Messiah came in the flesh, it was made perfectly apparent, from' so many of the descendants of Abraham being scattered abroad in different and distant parts of the world, that it was becoming, to the Jewish people, as such, an impracticable system. Suppose all the four quarters of our globe to be filled with zealous, devoted Jews. Every one

sees that a rigid compliance with their ritual would be physically impossible. And, therefore, when the time for Shiloh's appearance drew near, it became, every year, more and more plain,-however slow some of that " peculiar people” were in learning the lesson,--that the ceremonial economy must come to an end ;-must, of course, yield to a system less restrictive in its character, and more fitted for " every kindred, and people, and nation, and tongue.

Accordingly, when we examine the religion of Jesus Christ, in its New Testament form, we find it divested of every feature and circumstance adapted to confine it to any particular territory or people. Its doctrines, its worship, and its system of moral duty, are all equally adapted to universality. It teaches that God has made of one blood all nations of men to dwell on the face of the whole earth, Acts xvii. 26.That he is no respecter of persons, but that in every nation he that feareth God and worketh righteousness is accepted of him, Acts x. 34, 35.—That he is alike related to all the children of men, as their Creator, Preserver, and Benefactor; and that the high and the low, the rich and the poor, the monarch and the slave, all stand upon a level in his sight, and have all equal access, if penitent and believing, to the throne of his heavenly grace. It proclaims one method of justification for all classes of men; one kind of preparation for heaven ; and that not ceremonial, but moral and spiritual ; and one great code of moral duty, equally applicable to the learned and the ignorant, the polished and the rude, the civilized and the savage. And as all the great doctrines and principles of the religion of Christ are equally adapted to the whole human family; so the rational and benevolent laws,

the unostentatious rites, the simple worship, and the whole spirit and requirements of this religion, are no less adapted to be universally received as the religion of the whole race of man. It has nothing local ; nothing national ; nothing exclusive, except its uncompromising holiness; no burdensome ritual ; no tedious or expensive pilgrimages; no blazing altars ; no bloody sacrifices ; no intricate genealogies ; no special adaptedness to any particular form of civil government, or occupation in life. In short, every thing in this blessed religion ;-the simple costume which it wears; the heavenly spirit which it breathes; its law of marriage; its holy Sabbath ; its meekness, forgiveness, humility, and benevolence; applying alike to all classes of men, and to all states of society; -proclaim that it is suited to the condition of man, in all nations and ages; to meet the exigencies of all; to supply their wants; to refine and invigorate their talents ; to elevate their character; and to unite all who receive it, into one sanctified and happy brotherhood. Surely this character of our holy religion is adapted to confirm our confidence that it will, one day, as Jehovah has promised, gloriously fill the world ; and that, literally, in Christ, “all the families of the earth shall be blessed."

3. I have only to add, under this head, THAT THE

PRESENT ASPECT OF THE WORLD FURNISHES MUCH

REASON TO HOPE THAT THE ACCOMPLISHMENT OF

THIS PROMISE IS DRAWING NIGH.

It cannot be denied, indeed, that, on the principles of worldly calculation, there is much in the present condition of mankind to distress and dishearten. More than seven parts out of eight of the whole population of our globe, are still sunk in deplorable dark

ness and corruption. Of the eight hundred millions of immortal souls, which the earth is supposed to contain, only about sixty, or, at most, seventy millions are nominally Protestants. The great mass of the remaining seven hundred and forty millions, are either Pagans or Mohammedans, or nearly as destitute as either, of saving, evangelical light. Of these sixty or seventy millions of nominal Protestants, only about a third part, or a little more than twenty millions, can be said to have the real gospel of Christ, in any thing like its purity, so much as preached among them. Of those, which, in a large sense of the word, we may call evangelical congregations, probably not more than one half, or twelve millions, are even professors of religion, in any distinct or intelligent import of the terms. That is, of the eight hundred millions of the world's population, but little more than an EIGHTIETH PART are even PROFESSORS OF RELIGION, in any scriptural form, or claim to know any thing of its sanctifying power. How many of these professors of religion we may calculate upon as probably real Christians-ah!-that is a question on which the humble, enlightened believer, though he may hesitate and weep, will forbear to attempt an estimate!

Such is, confessedly, at present, the dark and distressing state of the great mass of our world's population. To what a lamentably small extent is that “glory," of which our text speaks, found to reign among our fellow men! What a little remnant, among all the multiplied millions of mankind, have any adequate or saving knowledge of the religion of Christ ! O what a moral charnel-house does our world appear! What a valley of “dry bones !—exceeding dry !" “Can these dry bones live?" Yes, they shall live!

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