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Them that honour me, I will honour ; and they that despise me, shall be lightly
esteemed. 1 Sam. ii. 30. This is part of the prophet's message to Eli, when he honoured his
sons above God; he had indeed reproved them, saying, “Why do ye these things?" for " I hear of your evil doings by all the people.” But he did not exert his authority in punishing them as they deserved when they slighted his reproof. This was accounted by God as winking at their sin. He therefore acquaints him that Hophni and Phineas, as they had sinned together, should die together, and his posterity be cut off in the flower of their age, and from the high-priesthood. Eli was not much affected with this prophecy, till the threatening was repeated by Samuel, an artless child, who did not know the voice of the Lord till Eli instructed him. It appeared then much more terrible than from the mouth of the prophet; and led him humbly to acknowledge the justice of God, and to submit to the sentence with a truly penitent heart. This is written for our admonition. Are we valiant for the truth, regarding neither father nor mother, nor the most tender relation, where the interest and honour of our God is concerned ? Parents, let this be a warning to you to train up your children in the fear of the Lord. The Lord Jehovah calls,
O harden not
hearts, Bè ev'ry ear inclin’d;
But hear his voice to-day ; May such a voice awake each heart, Lest, ere to-morrow's earliest dawn, And captivate each mind.
He call your souls away.
Abraham against hope believed in hope. Rom. iv. 18.
O my soul, thou hast not one single promise only like Abraham, but
a thousand promises, and many patterns of faithful believers before thee : it behoves thee, therefore, to rely with confidence upon the word of God. And though the Lord delayeth his help, and the evil seemeth to grow worse and worse, be not weak, but rather strong, and rejoice; since the most glorious promises of God are generally fulfilled in such a wonderous manner, that he steps forth to save us at a time when there is the least appearance of it. He commonly brings his help in our greatest extremity, that his finger may plainly appear in
And this method he chooses, that we may not trust upon any thing that we see or feel, as we are always apt to do, but only upon his bare word, which we may depend upon in every state.
How large the promise! how divine,
To Abra'ani and his seed ! “ I'l be a God to thee and thine,
Supplying all their need.” The words of this extensive love
From age to age endure;
The Angel of the Cov’nant proves,
And seals the blessing sure.
His love endures the same;
Blots out the sinner's name.
Immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood. Gal. i. 16. For the king's
commandment was urgent; much more the commandment of the King of
kings. Dan. ir. 22. Therefore, be not slothful in business. Rom. xii, 11. The speediest and easiest method to accomplish our desire of over.
coming the evil and doing the good, is an immediate compliance with our first convictions, without conferring with flesh and blood. If we delay the work, we give room to other people without, and to Satan and to our sinful hearts from within, to persuade us to the contrary; by which the flesh can easily renew its strength, and the spirit will be weakened. And what will be the consequence of this ? but that either we miscarry in our design, or that the conflict will be afterwards so much sharper; and the good work, if not stifled, dropt entirely ; yet, if it be done, it will not be done so completely, and with such singleness of heart, as it should be. But if we narrowly watch our hearts, and directly engage with every the least opposition when it stirs, then our enemies will not be so strong ;
and we shall have no reason to despair.
Jesu, mighty to renew,
Take away my darling sin,
Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but
yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead; and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God. Rom. vi. 13.
my members as weapons and instruments in his hands, I shall certainly be able not only to work, but also to conquer, since he understands full well how to manage them. May the Lord only give me grace not to wind myself out of his hands, else I must needs be like a dead useless carcase; Tor how can a pen write alone without being in the hand of a writer? It is true, indeed, that it is very hard, nay impossible, to be really good, and to do all that is good, if we undertake it alone; but God himself living and working in us, and we truly delighting in him, it is very easy and pleasant. Therefore care is only to be taken, that our hearts may be always the working place, and our members-the instruments of God, in which and through which he can perform every thing himself.
Now God I serve; to him alone
My thankful homage pay ;
And him will I obey.
Which he will not refuse;
The meaniest, basest instrument,
His glory deigns to use.
But Christ has set me free;
Which freely ransom'd me.
The fear of man bringeth a snare. Prov. xxix. 25. Be not conformed to this
world. Rom. xii. 2. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is
not in him. I John ii. 15. How many people swell with pride and vanity, for such things as they
would not know how to value at all, but that they are admired in the world! How fearful are many of having their houses poorly furnished, or themselves meanly clothed, for this only reason, lest the world should make no account of them, and place them amongst low and mean people! How often would a man have yielded to the haughtiness and ill-nature of others, and shown a submissive temper, but that he dares not pass for such a poorspirited man in the opinion of the world! Many a man would often drop a resentment, and forgive an affront, but that he is afraid, if he should, the world would not forgive him. How many wish to be real Christians, and would carefully praetise Christian temperance and sobriety, were it not for the censure which the world passes upon such a life! Others have frequent intentions of living up to the rules of the Christian religion, which they are frighted from, by considering what the world would say of them. Thus does the impression which we have received from living in the world enslave our minds, that we dare not attempt to be eminent in the sight of God and holy angels, for fear of being little in the eyes of the world. Reader, How is it with thee?-art thou still hanging between God and the world ? Consider for a moment; what can the world give thee in exchange for the favour of God? What can it belp thee in sickness, death, and judgment ? Make serious reflection on this with prayer unto God, and the snares of the world will be broken. Lord, save me from the fear of man, Which surely brings a snare ;
And make me hear their sc öffs and jests 1
With unconcerned ear.