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But while such is the lesson that the text addresses to us all in common, it has a second and more particular admonition for a part of us : for that portion of Christians who are generally spoken of with esteem, as being more advanced in godliness than their brethren—that portion which recognizes, not in word only but in deed, the obligation under which they lie to Almighty God and to His Son: who look upon themselves as pledged to His service by the very terms of their baptismal covenant; and who to a certain point have endeavoured to redeem that pledge—have endeavoured (with success differing according to their efforts) to yield themselves, their souls and bodies, as members of righteousness unto holiness-have endeavoured to keep stedfastly in view the bright hope of their calling, and have striven to walk, as much as they were able, in the right direction towards it-have framed their lives and the lives of their families upon the only rule by which that hope can be secured—the rule of seeking the kingdom of God first and before all other things; and who by necessary consequence, thankfully have recourse to all those means of grace and pious observances which God has appointed in His church for the comfort and security of His people.

For persons of this description, (and some such, there may be amongst you, my brethren,) the use of the text is obviously great. In it they may find, and of themselves they will be forward to find, a spur to animate their efforts, in the path which, through God's blessing, they have rightly chosen. They will not, if they are wise, refuse to be counselled against the danger of a relapse of falling back into that worldly, careless, and unbelieving course of life, and conduct which they see followed by but too many around them; and in which they themselves, it is probable, at one time walked.

No, my brethren, grateful as you must feel for having escaped so sad a condition as this; grateful as you must be for having profited thus far in your religion, for having arrived at a decision, an unwavering decision, between God and the world : you will not, I am sure, be puffed up, nor exalted above measure at the progress you have made : rather you will be disposed to fear; as did one far more advanced than yourselves-far more advanced than any of the present generation, you will be disposed to fear with St. Paul, lest after all you should be a castaway ; lest by any means, through the wiles and temptations of the wicked one; through the lurking corruption of your own hearts, you should, when least you expect it, find an enemy in your path, and be brought again under the heav yyoke of bondage—the bondage of sin, and death. And surely such fear, such wholesome fear of falling away from God, instead of being shaken


things to all men," to denounce them as

the enemies of the cross of Christ ?"

Surely, my brethren, no one can reflect on this and not be pained : no one who loves the Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity, but must feel pity, and indignation at such an exposure of man's weakness, and man's ingratitude. Nor will these feelings, I think, be lessened in intensity, if, from contemplating the conduct of our Lord's enemies at an early period of the Gospel preaching, we turn our minds to a scene nearer home: to the character, and conduct of those who are Christ's enemies now. Who these are, the marks by which they may be known, and what is revealed to us concerning their end, is the subject I would propose for our consideration this morning.

It is an inquiry, I need hardly say, of great interest to us all; for if, in the character of those who are denounced in the Scriptures as “the enemies of the Son of God,” we recognise any point of resemblance to ourselves, or to any of our friends, and acquaintance, any in whom we have a near interest, then surely the language of the apostle may, by God's blessing, be made serviceable to our good. If taken home, and applied to our own case, it may act as a timely, and wholesome warning; may be the means of saving a soul from death; reconciling an enemy with his truest friend; a sinner with his God.

In such an examination, the safest guide to follow will be the sure Word of God. In it we shall find, without risk of incurring the charge of presumption or uncharitableness, the marks, and tokens by which the enemies of the Redeemer's cross are to be known. “ Search the Scriptures," my brethren, “for in them ye think ye have eternal life, and they are they which testify" against you. But, as the Scriptures are a large volume, and can only be partially searched at one time, it will be enough for our purpose to-day to confine our attention to a particular passage in them,-a passage closely connected with the text-occurring in the same chapter of the Epistle to the Philippians — a passage wherein St. Paul gives us three distinct notes by which we may arrive at what we are in search of, and ascertain who are the enemies of the cross of Christ.” He tells us they are persons whose god is their belly, whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.

First, then, of those who make their belly their god. It must be clear, I think, to you all, that the characters intended to be described in these words, are such live after the flesh, and not after the spirit.” Men who take more thought for their bodies than for their souls; who find their highest pleasure in doing the very opposite to the directions of our Lord in the Gospel ; whose whole


thought and chief care is, what they shall eat, what they shall drink, and wherewithal they shall be clothed: whose profession of the christian religion only holds good while they receive comfort from it; but who start aside and are offended, so soon as it calls on them to deny themselves any bodily delight; to mortify their members upon earth; to crucify the flesh with its affections and lasts. It is evident that all who are of this description, come within the range of the apostle's condemnation. They who are such, serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly;" and while they continue in their bondage, enslaved by their fleshly lusts, they are excluded from the promises of the Gospel ; they must be reckoned among the enemies of Him who came to make it known, and who bids us therein, not to labour “ for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life.”

Secondly, let us look at another class of the enemies of the cross of Christ. Those who have this mark, that their “ glory is in their shame.” They glory in those very acts of sin of which they ought to be ashamed; acts I need not specifically name. It is not necessary, my brethren, to shock your ears by more than alluding to those who offend of malicious wickedness; whose profligate, and profane lives are rendered doubly hateful by

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