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will then seize you! Take advice; it is not yet too late. Had you in the morning cast in the valuable grain, your plant would have been stronger; but even at the eleventh hour you may commence, and the crop shall yet ensue.
By every thing terrible in the prospects of
neg. Ject, and every thing tender in the permission after so long delay to begin, although evening draws on, we urge you to sow in righteousness that you may reap mercy.
Seek forgiveness for your past negligence. For your sloth, justly might poverty have seized you as an armed man; but the voice of mercy is heard, saying, “ Arise, thou that hạst so long slept, and “ Christ shall give thee life.” Fly to the cross for pardon; to Jesus for fruitfulness : from him alone is your fruit to be found. .
Finally. Many have sown and can tell us, who are so engaged, of the joys of harvest. Like Isaac, they have sowed the land, and received in the same year an hundred fold; for the Lord hath blessed them !*
Personal satisfactions in large sheaves, have been gathered by them-joy in the Holy Ghost: even unspeakable and full of glory has been their privilege: they joy before God, according to the joy in harvest :-yes; they have been indulged with such abounding pleasures from the consolation of Israel, that like the venerable Priest in Jerusalem, they have adopted his words as best giving utterance to their kindred feelings. “ Lord, “ now lettest thou thy servants depart in peace; “ for our eyes have seen the appointed salvation.” Nor dare they deny, but larger crops in their domestic field have been gathered, than their infirmities and fears permitted them to anticipate. Desponding in the season of seed-time, they shed bitter tears, and falsely concluded all things were against them. The remote allusion to their Si. meons, their Josephs, and their Benjamins, made them long for the grave, where alone they could hope for repose: but God hath said, “ Refrain
* Genesis, xxvi. 12.
your voice from weeping, and your eyes from “ tears; for your work shall be rewarded, and " they shall come again from the hand of the
enemy.” Rescued from the adversary by the mighty Redeemer, and brought to their right minds by the powerful operation of the Holy Spirit, they arose to return to God, and the house of their Fathers. Your sons were dead and are alive again; were lost and are found; and they shall
perpetuate the “ best honors”* of your families, when 66
you are not.” Your childrens's children shall swell the trophies and the triumphs of a Saviour's conquests; and from those whom you considered as good as dead, shall spring as many as the stars of the sky in multitude, and as the sand which is by the sea shore, innumerable! The Lord hasten it in his own time!
* Without undervaluing those civil distinctions which every wise and good man highly appreciates, and wishes ever to continue as the fairest ornament and the surest security of social bliss, how true is it that the “ best honors” are those “ which come “ from above," and are connected with and proceed from religious cliaracter and conduct. One whose relatives wore coronets, and shone in courts and cabinets, has well clothed these just sentiments with his usual felicity of expression.
My boast is not that I deduce my birth
As a matter of good policy, it might be suggested to all heads of rising families, that the surest way to entail the property they may have acquired, is to perpetuate the principles which have thus, in their case, been sanctioned by an indulgent Providence.
PSALM cxxvi. 5.
They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.
MANY are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivereth him out of them all. Concerning the happy host of the spirits of just men made perfect, it is witnessed, “these are they that have come out “ of great tribulation.” The history of the church of Christ, in every revolving age, confirms these representations : each individual believer sets to his seal that this testimony is true; and on this account, the language of the pious in every period of time, is the same. As they have passed in lengthened procession through this vale of tears on their return to Zion, the like harmonious song has been heard ; and the varied tone of their satisfactions or sorrows, vibrates to a kindred chord in our
own minds. Religion, like its Divine Author, is immutable—the same yesterday, to-day, and for
“ As in water, face answereth to face; so 6 the heart of man to man.'
The brief but beautiful Psalm from whence the text is selected, is generally supposed to have been written about the time of the Jews' release from the Babylonish captivity; which surprizing event has ever, with the strictest propriety, been considered as typical of that more substantial and splendid redemption, effected for poor perishing sinners by our Lord Jesus Christ—the “ anointed of Je“ hovah”_" his shepherd who performs all his “ pleasure.” Yet although this better rescue has been accomplished, and the strong man which made the nations tremble, has been despoiled of his slaves and prey; the pious, like their type, the Jews, have to travel to a distant country for which they have set out. To the varied trials of their earthly pilgrimage, our text has an immediate allu“ sion :--they that sow in tears shall reap in joy. “ He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing pre“ cious seed, shall doubtless return again, bringing « his sheaves with him."
God is faithful who has promised, that “ while
* Proverbs, xxvii. 19.