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and from which not even St. Paul after his conversion was exempt, would seem to form a complete bar to our claim to an eternal reward upon the ground of our own merits. When we are taught, therefore, that after having done our utmost, we are still to hope for salvation only through the merits of our Lord Jesus Christ—that his transcendent excellence has supplied our lamentable deficiency-that his full, perfect, and sufficient sacrifice, has atoned for our guilt, whether personal or derived—we have at least a doctrine, which is intelligible for all practical purposes, of which we can comprehend enough for our guidance in this life ; which binds us to our duty by the strongest ties of gratitude to our Redeemer, and of concern for ourselves : which, in fine, established the divinity of our religion, by shewing that its

very basis is one, which as no human power could have formed, so no human intellect could have conceived.

Upon the whole, then, we cannot but conclude, that we have abundant reason to be satisfied, from the peculiar and perfect nature of his doctrines, that Jesus was indeed he that should come, the promised Messiah, the expectation of Israel, the Redeemer of the world. But admitting this to be true, a question of great interest may yet remain to be decided : namely, this, do we, notwithstanding, still look for another ? Perhaps, as Christians we shall be very ready to answer, no ; but let us see distinctly why we are so confident

upon that point. If we conclude that we have no reason to expect any future instruction from heaven, it can be only upon this solid ground—That the faith which we profess is not only true, but is also sufficient for all the purposes for which a Divine Revelation can be supposed to have been vouchsafed to mankind. That is, to guide them safely and happily through the difficulties of this probationary world; and, finally, to secure their complete felicity in another of eternal duration. But from this results this important consideration : that the Revelation which we have, will cease to be effectual to its great end, should it ever become generally clouded by superstition, or debased by fanaticism. And that, consequently, it is the clear duty of every Christian, but especially of every minister of the Gospel, to exert his best efforts, to preserve the faith once delivered to

the saints, in all its original beauty and simplicity; and to shew that genuine Christianity is a religion, not less worthy of God to bestow, than adapted for man to receivenot more powerfully addressed to the heart, than clearly approved by the understanding. If it be such a religion, further light is neither to be expected nor desired. But if it be not, we have at least abundant reason to hope and to pray for additional information upon this momentous subject. If, indeed, the Gospel of Christ be what so many enthusiasts of the present day labour mischievously to represent it; a partial dispensation, by which the Deity announces to his creatures, that he has selected some of them for salvation, and destined the rest to perdition, without reference to any merit or demerit of their own : and that he has afforded to the favoured few, some satisfactory, but inexplicable means of ascertaining that they are the 'exclusive objects of his choice; if an all-wise, all-powerful, and beneficent being, can have allotted the reward of virtue to those who may not have been virtuous : or can have determined to punish others for actions which he has given them no power to control : if the fate of countless millions of human beings of very limited faculties is to depend hereafter, not upon

their obedience to plain precepts here, but upon their profession of unintelligible doctrines; if not to cease to do evil, and to learn to do well; but to be spiritualized, to feel the operation of the Holy Ghost, to experience sensations which they cannot define, and to be guided by a light which they alone can discern: if to adopt a system of faith, which, acted upon, would totally unfit them for the business of the world, in which they have a part to perform ; but which, if not acted upon, becomes a mere empty speculation, or a fantastic dream—if, I say, all this be any thing like the Revelation of the Gospel, further light is undoubtedly to be wished for; and another Jesus devoutly to be looked for, to clear up and explain what is at present involved in impenetrable obscurity.

But if the very reverse of all this be (as we trust it is) the truth-if the Gospel has brought life and immortality to light, by assuring us of another state of existence, in which they that have done good shall be eternally rewarded, and they that have done evil eternally punishedif it has clearly defined the

doing good to consist in obedience to God, and in love to our fellow-creatures: if it has exacted from us not more than we are able to perform, but has required of every man only to make the best use of such talents as have been entrusted to him ; if it has instructed us, that salvation has indeed been purchased for us by our Saviour, but only upon conditions which we are bound to observe; that those conditions, though arduous, are not impracticable, being no other than to visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep ourselves unspotted from the world ; that is, to be kind to others, and innocent in ourselves—if, in short, it has called upon us to evince our faith by our practice, and has assured us that we must, with the assistance of that Divine grace which is denied to none who seek for it, work out our own salvation with fear and trembling; then may we be confident, that we have not another Saviour to look for—that as no future Revelation is promised to us, so is none other necessary; that the light which we have is, indeed, the true light: whose bright and glorious effulgence is abundantly sufficient to guide us safely to the mansions of peace and eternal felicity.

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