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drink abundantly of the rivers of his pleasure ; then, God will draw aside the vail and discover Heaven must tell you the rest.
And thus I have laid before you some reasons why you should give your hearts to God. What if God should come down among us, and try whether, and with whom, these arguments have prevailed. I do not know but he may be now going round from seat to seat, saying, “ My son, give me thine heart:" and I do not know but you may be saying, 'Lord, thou shalt ' have it! 'Amen: so be it.
After what has been said, I am unwilling to think any further persuasions can be necessary : and after such a cordial consent as you have now given, I am loth to express, or even to entertain, a suspicion. But-but-to-morrow you will mix . again with the world : temptations will crowd about you :-this thing, and the other thing, will be begging for your hearts : and, perhaps--I say, perhaps, to-morrow you may forget that you gave them to God to-day. I will not burthen your memories with a great number of counsels and cautions : take the two or three following Scriptures home with you. One word of God may and ought, to weigh more with you than a thousand words of mine :
“ Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.” (Heb. iii. 12.)
“ Thus saith the Lord, Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the Lord.” (Jer. xvii. 5.)
“ And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them to do them good ; but I will put my fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from me.” (Jer. xxxii, 40.)
And, to name no more, “ To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the Beloved.” (Ephes. i. 6.)
ON CONFORMITY TO THE WORLD.
ROM. xii. 2.
And be not conformed to this world: but be
ye transformed by the renewing of your minds ; that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.
DOCTRINES of grace do always infer and enforcé duties of obedience. What passed between God and your souls the last Sabbath was not (I hope it was not-I am sure it should not be) a temporary transaction. Then God said, My son, give me thine heart.”. You gave it to him, and promised-oh how solemnly did you promise !--that you would never so much as wish it out of his hands again ; that, if you had never so many hearts, he should have them al): and that you were never so happy in all your lives as at that moment when you cried out, with so much rapture, “Thou art my portion, O Lord.” Now the Lord says, “My son, be not conformed to this world. If thou wast sincere when thou gavest me thy heart, if I am to look upon thee as mine, and if thou expectest any benefit from the agrees ment then made 'between us, be not conformed to this world; for thou canst not serve the world and
me too: I am not to be so put off. If therefore thou wouldst approve thyself a faithful servant to me, I tell thee again, Be not conformed to this world.'-And as to you, who invited your Beloved to come into his garden and eat his pleasant fruit, and were entertained by him with some of the choicest dainties of heaven-(for even now the remembrance of his love is better than wine)-He, your Beloved, now addresses his church; My sister, my spouse, if thou didst sit under my shadow with such delight, and if my fruit was so sweet unto thy taste as thou saidst it was; if thou dost indeed think me the chief of ten thousand, and altogether lovely;, and if thou wouldst continue in my love; then be not conformed to this world: I cannot bear a rival in thy affections. I know the snares that will be laid for thee: I know the triumph with which every instance of thy criminal compliance will be received by thy enemies and mine ; and I know, too, what shame---yea, what remorse:-yea, what indignation---yea, what anguish and torture of mind, thou wilt feel for thy desertion and denial of me, when thou comest to think on thy ways, and remember from whence thou art fallen. Therefore I charge thee, by all the love I have shown to thee, and by all the love thou hast professed to me; and by that eternity of mutual enjoyment before us: I charge thee, Be not conformed to this world.'
After this, the language of the Apostle in the verse preceding the text --- though surely the most tender and affectionate that human friendship could dictate---yet, coming after the counsels and compassions of the mighty God, the everlasting Fa
ther, and the Prince of Peace, may not perhaps appear so forcible and striking as it really is: “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world,” Here, however, you see that it is on all hands expected, that the dedication of yourselves to God must break off your connections with the world: or, that it is the duty, and must be the care, of all Christians, to decline conformity to the world.
You see it is the former part of this verse that I have now particularly in view : “ Be not conformed to this world.” And here it will be necessary to inquire,
I. In what respects Christians should not be conformed to this world.
II. On what accounts they should not thus conform.
III. By what means such a conformity may be prevented or remedied.
Let us inquire, 1. In what respects Christians should not be conformed to this world.
We are informed that before the deluge « God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” (Gen. vi. 5.) This is true, not of that race only, but of all mankind in their natural condition. Inquire what is the opinion of the world now, and you will find that the thoughts of men still continue to be vanity. What, for example, is the world's opinion of God? Do they not suppose him to be altogether such an