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which defy its storms, its persecutions, and its sorrows? Have we not all cause to adore the merciful forbearance, the long-suffering goodness of our God, who, unprovoked by our sins, by our impenitence, by our ingratitude, still continues to us the offers of his mercy, the means of grace, the hope of glory? Ah! these are spiritual mercies, which, , infinitely more than any temporal blessings, demand our homage, our gratitude, our most faithful and zealous service. And how have they been returned? Have we, like the grateful Samaritan leper, when cleansed from our spiritual maladies, and refreshed with the comforts of the divine favour, returned and given glory to God, or, like the nine insensible Jews, gone on our way, elated with spiritual self-confidence and pride, regardless of our solemn obligations to glorify our God by more vigorous and faithful obedience?

Brethren, it surely cannot be necessary for me to denounce the crime of ingratitude, to portray its guilt and its enormity; there is not a heart which will not instantly disclaim it as the offspring of that criminal indifference or disgraceful pride which extinguishes every generous, noble, and amiable feeling, and sinks the heart in sullen and gloomy insensibility. There is not an individual present who would not resent the charge of being insensible to favours conferred, of ungratefully requiting his benefactor : reflect then, I beseech you, how great will be your inconsistency, how awful your criminality, if you are guilty of ingratitude towards that Almighty Being whose favours sink in comparison the most splendid favours of the most powerful earthly benefactor—that Almighty Lord who has given you life, and being, and reason, and Vol. III.


enjoyment, spiritual mercy, glory and immortality; and guilty of ingratitude you will undoubtedly be, ingratitude, the enormity of which language would fail to portray, unless you devote to your heavenly Father the service of your hearts and your livesunless you make his goodness the theme of

your praises, bis favour the object of your pursuit, and his laws the rule of your conduct. As you would wish, then, to escape the charge of an ingratitude that will be your disgrace, your everlasting punishment, repent, from the heart repent of all your past abuse of the mercies of your God, repent of all the ungrateful returns you have made to him for his infinite goodness. Forsake your sins, continuance in which displays the basest insensibility to his mercy and love. With renewed fidelity devote yourselves to him, through his eternal Son Jesus Christ, by whose merits and grace he importunes you to be reconciled unto him. Exercise that lively faith in the Son of God which will make you whole, not merely like the Samaritan leper, from a worldly leprosy, but from the spiritual leprosy of sin. Ever cherishing in your minds a lively sense of the manifold, the infinite mercies of your God and Saviour, be yours the holy resolution of the pious David : “ I will sing unto the Lord as long as I live, I will praise my God while I have my being. My meditation of him shall be sweet; I will be glad in the Lord. Praise thou the Lord, O my soul, praise the Lord.”

These are the emotions with which those who partake of the Lord's supper should always approach the holy table; for there we are to show forth the Lord's death till he come; there we are called to a festival the most joyful that can awaken our affections or engage our hearts; there, with angels and archangels, and all the company of heaven, we are to laud and magnify the glorious name of Almighty God, our heavenly Father, who, of his tender mercy, gave his only Son Jesus Christ to suffer death upon the cross for our redemption. Greater love than this was never displayed. Livelier emotions of gratitude should never be in exercise, than those with which we celebrate this stupendous act of grace and mercy, that meritorious sacrifice, whereby alone we obtain the remission of our sins, and are made partakers of the kingdom of heaven. And let those who never commemorate the love of him who yielded up his soul, by death upon the cross, for their redemption, seriously, most seriously consider with what plea they shall repel the charge of ingratitude, which must deserve, and will receive, sore punishment, in that day when the Saviour, whose mercy they now. neglect, will be that Judge whose justice they cannot escape. Let them then repent of their past neglect and insensibility, and no longer violate a command the most solemn and affecting that ever was uttered—for it was uttered by the Son of God, who died for us« This do in remembrance of me."



LUKE xvi. 19, 20, 21.

There was a certain rich man, who was clothed in purple and

fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day: and there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, who was laid at his gate, full of sores, and desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover, the dogs came and licked his


Thus unequal is the distribution of the good things of the present life; thus apparently unjust are the dispensations of Providence. We behold here a rich man, surrounded by every luxury which can conduce to his splendour, his ease, or his enjoyment. His wealth procured for him all the richest productions of the earth, and his table daily exhibited every delicacy that could excite or gratify his appetite. “He was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day.” How often is the extreme of wretchedness contrasted with the elevation of prosperity! At the gate of this voluptuous sensualist, whose ingenuity doubtless was exercised to dispose of his superfluous wealth, was laid Lazarus, a beggar, subsisting from day to day on the pittance which his entreaties extorted from the careless sons of prosperity, or which some sympathizing heart bestowed. The pains of loathsome disease aggravated the cravings

of hunger-he was “ full of sores :" and thus was laid a pitiable and wretched outcast at the rich man's gate. The cravings of hunger extorted the entreaty to be fed, if it were only with “the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table.” But in vain he stretched forth the hand of supplication and uttered the cry of entreaty; in vain did the look of anguish and the tear of misery make the silent but. powerful appeal to the bosoms of those around him. Disgusted with his extreme wretchedness, it appears they left him, without succour and without consolation. Exposed and abandoned, “the dogs came and licked his sores."

My brethren, when we behold this virtuous man (for such is the character which he sustains in the parable) sinking under the ills of poverty and sickness, while the voluptuous sensualist, at whose gate he was laid, rolled on the couch of ease and luxury; when we behold him perishing for want of the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table, whose pampered appetite was sated with the delicacies that, in luxurious profusion, were spread before him; we are tempted to exclaim, in the murmurs of impatient distrust"What is the Almighty, that we should serve him ? and what profit should we have if we pray unto him ? Verily we have cleansed our hearts in vain, and washed our hands in innocency." These are the suggestions which sometimes arise in our minds, when we behold vice exalted in the world, and virtue suffering and degraded. But, my brethren, if we look beyond this dark and imperfect state of trial to the final development of the plans of Providence in that future world which will be our final and eternal abode, the murmurs of discontent and repining will be

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