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of praise, so it is to be to the Lord God for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off, Ifa. lv. 13. It is like the rainbow, that is a sign to God of the promise that he hath made to all men, that he will drown the world no more, and a sign to man that he shall not be drowned. But to us the former is a sign that God will no more be wrath with us nor rebuke us, and a sure sign to us that we never shall be drowned in destruction and perdition, The fir and the myrtle shall not be cut off; they never shall be cut asunder with the sword of julțice, nor be separated from the communion and fellowship of God the Father, and God the Son: they shall ever abide in the favour of both. I think my dear fifter is a good deal relapsed into legal bondage, she has lost the Lord's presence with respect to sensible enjoyment; and now she lives too near home she creeps too much into self, and pores too much over the members and motions of the old man; and she has lived
the old stock of past experiences so long that she has nothing left but the bare remembrance of them, and the hope which past experience hath wrought in her. Manna in the wilderness was to be
gathered every day, except the sabbath ; and you know that hidden manna is promised to us under the gospel. Water from the rock followed Israel, and they drank of it: and we have the promise of being watered every moment, and of being kept night and day. When the land of Canaan was to
rest on the seventh year, a blessing was promised on the sixth ; and on the eighth year, when the new crop came in, some of the old store was to be found, that the householder might mix it with the
And every scribe instructed unto the kingdom of God is to be like one of those old householders; he is to bring forth out of his treasures things new and old. But who are these stores for? The Lord tells you: “At our gates are all manner of pleasant fruits, new and old, which I have laid up for thee, O my beloved !" Song vii, 13. The paffover offering was to be offered up but once in a year, in remembrance of Israel's great deliverance, and to lead their faith to their great Deliverer then to come, and to a greater deliverance by him; and we know that Christ our paffover was facrificed for us, and we are to keep the feast. But then there was to be a lamb offered every morning and evening throughout the year, which was called the daily sacrifice; and with which was to be offered a perpetual incense. This was to lead their faith to look daily to the Lamb of God, both for help and for life; and the sweet perfume of unctuous prayer and praise, under the influence of the spirit of supplication, must, as our incense, attend our daily looks to the Lamb flain from the foundation of the world. We are to live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved us, and gave himself for us. At thy first deliverance thou hadft little else but
banqueting for a whole ycar ; then came weaning time; the breast was put up, and stronger meat was brought forth; the fincere milk of the word was left for other little ones, who are coming after, and for those who are unskilful in the word of righteousness; whilst knowledge and understanding are to feed them which are of full age. Ezekiel's roll and John's little book, were both to be eaten, and they were sweet in their mouth ; but, when they came into the belly, and discovered all the innermost parts of that, attended with the candle of the Lord, it caused much bitterness there, through the risings of inbred corruptions against the heavenly contents. John's little book produced the wise man's twofold ingredients : “ The heart knoweth its own bitterness; and a stranger intermeddleth not with his joy.” And this hath been the experience of all that ever received the word of God in power, in the Holy Ghost, and with much affurance. As for those who receive it into their head, and have their natural paflions moved and stirred up under the sound of it, their joys seem long to abide; they are always the same; they have no changes of joy and bitterness, prosperity and adverfity; they are not in trouble as other men, nor plagued as the people of God are; their strength is firm, until God's fan, or the midnight cry, comes on them; and then all their joys wither, like grass upon the house-top,“ wherewith the mower filleth not his hand, nor he that
bindeth sheaves his bosom." But God's choice of his people is made manifest to them in the furnace of affliction. When temptation and persecution began to fall heavy upon the apostles and primitive saints, when the fun waxed hot, and the fiery trial came on, the wayside hearers, the stony and thorny-ground hearers, those who went a warfare at their own coft, and those who began to build and were not able to finish; all went back and fell away. But God will bring his own elect through fire and through water: the former shall not kindle upon them, nor shall the latter drown them; in the furnace their election is made sure to them; “ I will bring the third part through the fire, and will purify them as silver is purified, and try them as gold is tried; they shall call upon my name, and I will hear them, and I will say, It is my people, and they shall say, The Lord is my God.” Here is God's acknowledgment of them ; he is not ashamed to be called their God: and here is their warrantable and compulsive claim upon him. By the faith of God's clect they shall say, The Lord is my God. And would my
dear fifter escape the furnace? Would me wish to carry all her dross and tin with her? Would The desire a whole heart that needs no Doth not the Lord promise to look to, and dwell with, them that are of an humble and a contrite heart, and tremble at his word ? to revive the heart of the humble, and the spirit of the contrite ones?
Come, old girl, thou hast been compassing the old mount, and poring over the old fretting leprofy long enough; look once more, with Jonali, towards the holy temple. Jonah did more by looking than he did by kicking. Looking at the brazen serpent had better effect than looking at the bite, or complaining of the pain. Manoah and his wife did nothing but look on while the angel did wonderously before them; and this was all that the disciples did when the great work was finished. There was none to help, there was none to uphold. The disciples followed to see the end. Matt. xxvi. 58. And what did we do when the great work was wrought in us? We looked to him, and were saved; we looked to him, and overcame him. And we must continue at this; we must not look at the things which are feen, for they discourage us, but at the things which are not seen. We must look at the eternal things that Christ is in full possession of for us ; yea, we must run the race set before us, looking to the great poffeffor, the author and finisher of our faith.
If accused by Satan, law, or conscience, where can we look but to the advocate? If exercised with God's chastening rod, or the reflections of fatherly anger, there is no where to look but to the
great Mediator. If iniquities prevail against us, there is no hope but in the fountain opened by Christ, and in the fulness of grace treasured up in