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the Gospel of peace. Above all, having the shield of faith, and the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the spirit, which is the Word of God. Then will the raptures of the Redeemed, mingled with the songs of the first-born, echo to heaven -- O Death! where is thy sting? O Grave! where is thy victory? The sting of Death is sin, and the strength of sin is the Law; but, thanks be to God, who hath given us the victory, through our Lord Jesus Christ! To these, the Judge will say, Come, ye blessed of my Father! But, O the reverse! on the left hand. What a solemn, heart-rending separation of families. Of those, who on earth were confederate in the same fortunes, and interests, and actions. Of those, who walked arm in arm, with heart knit to heart. Of those, who were born twins of the same birth, one is taken, and the other left. What an eternal farewell, of father and mother, of sister and brother, of wives and children, of loving and beloved. There stand, with faces turned into paleness, in speechless, agonizing horror, those who on earth followed after the lust of the eye, the lust of the flesh, and the pride of life. They have leaned on a broken reed, whereon if a man lean, it will pierce his soul. They have sown the wind, and must reap the whirlwind. The Lord will sweep them with the besom of destruction. "Their conscience re-echoes to the voice of the Judge, guilty! guilty! Who shall acquit them, when self-condemned? If they are condemned by the Mediator, the Saviour, the Friend of Sinners, their condemnation must be just. Immortality is now a curse. No change, no gradation, but from wo to wo. On earth they cried, Crucify Him! Crucify Him! Now they cry in despair, Lord! Lord! To these, the Judge will say O tremendous sound!--I know you not. Depart, ye cursed! Then the shouts of the holy orders of angels, and archangels, who have also been judged, echo, and re-echo, to heaven, and to hell. - Hell trembles!-- Heaven rejoices!
When the Judgment is ended, Fire shall come down from the throne of God; the lower heavens shall be rolled together as a scroll, and pass away with a great noise; the elements shall melt with fervent heat; the earth also, and the works that are therein, shall be burnt up. They
shall flee away from the face of Him, that sitteth on the throne, and there shall be found no place for them any O what a scene! The World on Fire! Conflagration! and desolation! and wo! What ailest thou, O thou Sea, that thou fleest? thou Jordan, that thou art driven back? The everlasting mountains, Lebanon and Ararat, totter on their bases! The modern Babylon is fallen! is fallen! that great city! And I saw another Angel stand in the Sun. The stars fall from their orbits. How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning. Planet rushes against planet. System against system. Piercing shrieks mingle with the trumpet of the Archangel, and with the thunders of the groaning heavens.' The flames catch the air, and the visible chaos above; and the whole vast lower Universe crashes into one horrible Monument of Ruins!
While this World of Matter is on Fire, those, on the left hand of the Judgment-seat, will be conducted, by the Prince of the power of the air, with weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth, down, through the devouring flames, to dwell forever with the Man of Perdition, and his accursed legions, in the World of Wo unutterable, where Hope can never enter. Ye blasting horrors, crush not on my soul !
Meanwhile, those, on the right hand of the Judgmentseat, will ascend with the Son of Man, with songs of praises, and triumphings, to be presented to the Father; there forever to dwell with Holy Angels, and beatified spirits, in bliss unspeakable, which will never end, in the New Heavens and the New Earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. Visions of glory, spare my aching sight!'
Between these Two Worlds; the World of Saints, and the World of Sinners will be a Great Gulf fixed!
Is it not the extreme of amazement, that such truths do
not make all our bones to shake, and the hair of our flesh to stand up? That they do not arouse our sluggish hearts
from the death of sin, and the grave of inaction, to live watchfully and obediently, chastely and justly, humbly and devoutly, like persons who believe them? For, those ears, that now hear my voice, shall hear the trump of the Archangel; those eyes, which now see my face, shall behold the face of the Son of God. Though, after our death, worms destroy this body, yet in our flesh shall we see God; whom we shall see for ourselves, and these eyes shall behold him, and not another. Why doth not this subject affect us more? Why doth it not elate the righteous with joy unspeakable, and full of glory? And why doth not fearfulness surprise the hypocrite? Wherever the Gospel publishes the doctrine of a future judgment, there it requires all men to repent.' God now commandeth all men to repent, because he hath appointed a day for judging all men. Providence, reason, conscience, common-sense, and self-interest, all command, and implore you, to prepare to make your peace with God, and your own souls. For, repent we must, in time, or through eternity. Delaying reformation does not remove the necessity; but renders it more severe, and difficult. That which will excuse, or palliate the guilt of an African, or an Indian, in the great Day of Account, will not excuse us; for to whom much is given, of them will much be required.
To the Sinner, the Day of Judgment should be a thought of awful alarm. If there be need of much mercy to the servants and friends of the Judge, then his enemies shall not be able to stand upright in judgment.' The sinner need not wonder that God, who so loves mankind, should exact justice above mercy from him, when he has despised that, which God most loves, his Son; whose body he has crucified, whose purposes he has destroyed, whose honour he has disparaged, whose joys he has diminished, whose passion he has made ineffectual, and whose love he has trampled under impious feet. Let the sinner remember, that his impenitent life will bring him to an insufferable shame, in that Day of fearful scrutiny; and that his doom must be, pain above patience, sorrows without ease, amazement without resolution, sad remembrances, envy and confusion, and despair without hope, forever and ever.
But to the Christian, the Day of Judgment may be a reflection of rapturous triumph. For eye hath not seen, ear hath not heard, nor have entered into the heart of man, the things that God hath laid up for them that love him. No matter what a Christian endures in this intermediate life; whether pain, or poverty, or bereavements; that Day will annihilate all, and recompense both the waiting, and the suffering. Christian! let your heart leap in anticipation of that Day; when you shall have trodden through the Wilderness of this World, and crossed over the Jordan of Death, and landed on that peaceful shore, and met your Lord in the air; where guardian Angels shall conduct you to happiness, beyond your wages, beyond your thoughts, above your understandings, and above the highest heavens; to a participation of the joys of God, and the inheritance of Christ; when all your sorrows shall be turned into delights, 'your persecutions into a crown, the cross into a throne, poverty into riches; losses, and affronts, and inconveniences, and death, into sceptres, and hymns, and halleluiahs.'
Matth. xix, 17.. IF THOU WILT ENTER INTO LIFE, KEEP
THIS WAS the reply of Jesus Christ to the amiable young Jewish Ruler; importing that, if a person shall obey the Commandments, in spirit and in truth; if he shall prove this obedience, by not loving the world, more than he loves God; he shall enter into eternal happiness.
Although the Ten Commandments were primarily addressed to the Jews, and therefore the reason alleged in the fourth, and the promise annexed to the fifth; yet, as the Jews were then the only church of God, the commands had equal regard to each succeeding Household of Faith. There is a difference between instituted appointments, and moral precepts; the latter being of immutable, and eternal validity. Some traces of the Moral Law are discoverable by our natural reason, and the whole accords with it. It has its basis in the nature of God, and of man; in the relations which men bear to him, and to each other; and in the duties which result from them; therefore, it is universally obligatory. The motives of our obedience may differ from those of the Jews, yet the matter of the injunction is the same. Think not, says Christ, that I am come to destroy the Law, that is, the Moral Law; I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in nowise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever, therefore, shall break one of these commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the