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and those who live in the present day—the Mighty and the Weak, the Conquerors and Conquered; and Thou, O Felix! and thy imperial Master, Cæsar, and Alexander, and all the Names of boar Renown, shall be crouded into one promiscuous innumerable Throng; while the Earth, as if wearied of its ancient inhabitants, for whose sake it had long groaned under the Curse of Heaven, shall sink under their feet, wrapt up in devouring Flame, and pass away with a
Now comes forth the Ancient of Days in all his Glory and his Father's Glory! Enrobed in a Cloud of Light which will eclipse all other created Light; His Head encircled with a radiant Bow, His Face brighter than the Sun's Glory, His Legs as Pillars of Fire, the eternal Book of the Councils of God, displayed on High, as His heavenly Banners, He rides forth sublime on the wings of the Wind; a fiery stream issues before him to clear his way. His Seat assumed, thus he
the awful Process:“ Hear, ye assembled nations! attend to the voice of your Judge, before whom all your thoughts and actions lie naked and open, from the Foundation of the World to the present Day!
“I divested myself of my Glory, which I had with the Father from eternity; and came down to preach the Gospel of Peace and Salvation to all the fallen Race of Man. I revealed to you a Scheme of atonement for Sin, and a method of Reconciliation to God. I opened the prospects of Life and Immortality before you; and I provided a supply of my Word and sound Doctrine to remain with you through every Age of
the World. I charged my holy Angels to minister unto you in Truth and Good. My Divine Spirit was ever touching your Spirits with all Holy InAuences. I appointed your own Consciences as my Vicegerent within you, to be your constant Monitor and Guide.
“ Come now, ye whose Souls can testify within you, that
you have made some improvement of these advantages, and have repaired your failings, by speedy Repentance, and turning to my Divine Mercy—“Come ye in glorious Ranks, and be seated on my Right Hand! But ye who have neglected and despised all these advantages, who have trampled my Mercies under foot, and have counted the Blood of the Covenant, whereby you were to be sanctified, an unholy thing-Go ye to my Left Hand. Be ye divided from the faithful Multitude on my Right, as a Shepherd divides his Sheep from the Goats. To you, ye faithless, is reserved the Sentence of Condemna. tion, prepared for the Devil and his Angels, from the beginning of the World."
Such an account, on a subject so new and interesting, as a future arraignment of all the World for the deeds done in the Body, at the Bar of an Omnipotent All-seeing, Righteous Judge, it may be well believed, filled the Mighty Felix with terrible apprehensions. He Shook, he Trembled, he fell into dreadful alarm, as hath been noticed from the sacred Text before; and lest he should betray the dignity of his Rank and Office, and become unmanned on his Judgment-Seat, he was glad to frame an excuse, “Go thy way for this time, when I have a convenient season, I will call for thee!"
The vanity of such an excuse as this, I hope there will be little occasion to enlarge upon, after what I delivered on the subject, in a former discourse.
" A more convenient Season! To-morrow, and again to-morrow, or any succeeding portion of our time—these are not ours of a certain. Amidst the constant Monitors of the uncertainty of Things hereto keep, day after day, hanging on to-morrow; to behold our short Glass of Life ebbing and shaking to its last sands; Friend after Friend torn from our Bosoms; and yet we still defer our main chance-Oh! this is the height of all Infatuation!” —
My next, or ninth Discourse will be in part a continuation and conclusion of this great Subject of a future Judgment, as treated of by sundry of the most eminent Divines of our Church, and some learned foreign writers.
FIRST PREACHED JANUARY 12, 1794.
1 THESS. Chap. IV. Ver. 13-18.
MARVELLOUS is our curiosity in the days of our ambition and worldly glory, to search into the Records of Time for our Pedigree and the History of our Ancestors; and to emblazon our Coat of Arms with every Ensign of their Renown and laudable Achievements. The Soul, in particular, bears its part high in this work; always hankering after something new, and to know what it did not know before; especially concerning its own Origin, and the Origin of Unhappiness and Evil, in the Creation of God. Nor is this curiosity confined to what concerns itself only, but extends into the whole World of Spirits, and all that has befallen, or can possibly befal them! The sublime Burnett, has a stretch of Imagination on this subject, so bold, that I read it with a kind of trembling dread, which chills even Admiration!
“ The History of Angels (says he), good or bad, “ and the part they act in the Ministry of Heaven, “ will engage our attention in another World; and “ we even wish to pry into it while we sojourn in this “ World.-For my part, (continues he), I had rather “ know the History of Lucifer himself, than of all “ the Babylonian and Persian Kings; nay, than of “ all the Kings of the earth. What was his Birth“ right before his Rebellion and Fall? What were “ his Dominions? Where stood his imperial Court " and where was his Residence? How was he van“ quished, dethroned, deposed, cast down? For “ what Crime or Cause, and by what Power? What “ were those Wars in Heaven, and how carried on, “ concerning which the incomparable Milton has “ expended such a fund of sublime Imagination, and
Eloquence? By what means does this Infernal “ Prince still uphold his Kingdom, and continue to
wage War against Heaven, even in his exiled state? " Who are his Confederates? What is his Power
over Mankind, and how far limited? What Check, “ Change or Damage, did he sustain by the Coming “ of Christ? and how did it affect or alter the pos"ture of his affairs? What will be his last Fate and “ final Doom; and whether he may ever hope for “Restoration, and a Re-instatement in the Favour " of God?”-On this last part Burnett ventures no decisive opinion of his own, in this place; but it may be gathered from his writings elsewhere, that he does not think such a Restitution impossible, or contradictory to the benevolent Plan of God, in the exercise of his creating and redeeming Love!
The Soul (from the arguments already delivered, Sermons V, VI, page 70, and elsewhere) being now persuaded, though with much reluctance, of the necessity of parting with her dear companion, her Mor