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man of discord, a mischief maker, a stirrer up of strife, and dost think thou art going to the world of harmony. Canst thou not love thy brother or thy sister, and canst thou be going where all love each other; to that grand concert of hearts, whence as from one living instrument goeth forth the music of the soul to God? Canst thou not forgive, and how should that be thy place where each of the immense assembly acknowledges the remission of ten thousand talents ? I ask you but another question. Is Jesus Christ so high and so dear in thy esteem, and dost thou feel so beholden to him, and so thankful, that thou couldst to-day, wert thou taken to-day, join thy voice to that of the many angels round about the throne, and the multitude of the redeemed there, in saying, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing;” or this, “ Unto him that loved us and washed us from our sins in his own blood, to him be glory and dominion for ever." Is that your place?
There are those who, by the considerations presented, would be alarmed but for the hope of a future change of heart, which shall adapt them to heaven, They acknowledge that heaven is not now their place, but they trust it will be; that God, by his grace, will make it theirs, if not sooner, yet in death. This relieves them. Many have a vague expectation of something wonderful that death is going to do for them in the way of preparing them for heaven. But what is there in death to sanctify and fit a soul
for heaven? What in the simple separation of the soul from the body, to affect its spiritual wickedness, and to destroy in it the dominion of such things as pride, anger, malice, revenge and the like? There is nothing alterative in death. But the person perhaps does not expect the change to be wrought by death, but by God at death. Why then, I ask, and who can answer it? Why then? Why should he effect that change then, rather than at any given point in the progress of life? Life is the period for this change; and others are changed in life. What should render it more probable that God will interpose in the hour of death, than in any other hour? There is much in a dying scene to move our compassions; but nothing to affect God's peculiarly. He will never pity any one of you more than now he does; never can be better disposed to your salvation than now. He sees the case now in all its dimensions. It will develope hereafter nothing new to him.
At this very moment his eye is on you, looking not observation merely, but interest and affection; and his arms, which embrace the universe, are extended towards you, and his voice in reason's ear is heard saying, “Why will ye die ?” Parents, when they bend over their dying childen, whose souls they have neglected, will feel more than they do now; and pastors will feel more ; but God will never feel more for you than he does now.
Even now does he not open his heart and offer every sinner a place and perpetual home there ? And this moment there is but one obstacle in the way
any man's salvation, and that is his own will. Make no
calculation on any impression which you may hereafter be able to make on God.
By the light which this subject sheds, we see,
1. Why regeneration is necessary. It is necessary to adapt the soul to heaven; to make heaven our place.
2. We see also from the nature of the necessity, that it is a change which cannot be dispensed with. 6 Ye must be born again.”
3. We see what it is which ought to alarm an unconverted man. It is himself. The state of his heart towards God.
4. We see, also, by the same light the insufficiency of morality. It is very well and quite necessary; but every thing which is necessary is not sufficient. It does not answer the purpose of fitting the soul for heaven. That is done only by holiness.
5. We see how little ground of complaint there will be against the final allotments of men, since each will go to his appropriate place. God will banish from his presence only those who never really loved his presence. Therein is comfort for some poor, pious soul. Those to whom he will say, “Depart from me,” always said to him, “Depart from us.” They fled from God, and now they are driven from him. They desired to be without him, and now they are, in every sense, without him. Are they happy? What! a soul happy in eternity without God? Don't ask such a question.
6. We see what we have to do. It is to cultivate spiritual-mindedness, heavenliness of temper. Have we made a beginning ? Let us go on. But, if not,
begin now. Though it be late with some of you to begin life's work, yet it is not too late. It is only too late to defer any longer; and don't be discouraged. Read Isaiah lv. Remember the oath of God, (Ezekiel xxxiii.11,) where you see God is ready. He will treat with you. If the work is great, yet greater is the being who is to do it. Nothing is too hard for him. If great is thy unworthiness, Christ's merit is greater. What if the stain is deep, his blood can take it out. Fly thee to his pierced heart; there is healing. Hide thee in that cleft of the rock of ages. There is safety there. Be that thy place, and then heaven shall surely be.
Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner
of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness.2 Peter iii. 11.
ALTHOUGH the fate of one immortal inhabitant of this vast world, is more interesting and more important than the destiny that awaits the world itself, which has been the birth and burial place of so many millions of such beings, yet we cannot help feeling some degree of interest in the fate that is reserved even for the material fabric. It is not strange that we should feel some kind of attachment, so far as attachment can be felt towards objects destitute of life, to a world that successively affords us our cradle, our arena, and our grave; and that we should take a melancholy interest in the future history of this great globe, that has been the theatre of so many mighty transactions, and the temporary home of so many illustrious beings, and is now the receptacle of so much sacred dust; and that has been signalized above all other worlds, by being selected to receive the visit of the Son of God, and to exhibit the wonders of redemption. It is natural that, when we look abroad on this earth, every spot of which is, in a sense, consecrated ground, that we should experience