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God's using other more powerful 3. If God instructs men in the means of instruction. The truth manner that has been said; then is; mankind are born like the wild they never can have any excuse ass's colt, and choose to live in for not harkening to bis instrucignorance and stupidity. They tions. They often think they say to God, “ Depart from us, for bave reasons, and sometimes good we desire not the knowledge of reasons, for not harkening to huthy ways.” They naturally bate man instructions. Children are parental instruction in their child- apt to imagine, that tbey have hood and youth, and public inc good excuses for not regarding struction, in every succeeding pe- the instructions of their parents riod of life. The heathen world and others. They may think. all live without the knowledge of that parental instructions are unthe only living and true God, and necessary, unwise, and unimpormuch the largest portion of the tant, and therefore unworthy their christian world, live without God, attention and regard; or they without Christ, and without hope may think, that they are given at in the world, though they have an improper time and in an imline upon line, and precept upon proper manner; and for such rea. precept. How very few learn sons imagine, that they are excutheir character, condition, and sable in refusing to yield an obeduty from the common and con- dient ear. But they can have do stant means of instruction, such excuses for disregarding diGod is obliged to employ other vine instructions; for God never and more energetic means to gives them any unnecessary, or awaken those whom he intends to unwise, or unimportant, or unsea. awaken, to convince those whom sonable instructions.
A people he intends to convince, and to cone may think, that their public teachvert those whom he intends to ers give them upprofitable, un. Convert. No one ever knows his scriptural, or erroneous instrucutter aversion to religious in- tions ; and feel themselves justified struction, until God undertakes to in disregarding them. But they ipstruct him himself. This E. never can find any excuse or palpbraim acknowledged. God says, liation for disregarding the instruc* 1 bave surely heard Epbraim tions which God gives them, by his bemoaning himself thus, Thou word, or providence. He knows hast chastized me, and I was chas. when to instruct them, how to intized, as a bullock unaccustomed struct them, and what instructions to the yoke." The awakened to give them. He never teaches and convinced simer is astonished only when human instructions fail at his former stupidity and opposi- of producing their desired effect. tion to divine instruction.
He knows when wen disregard or
tisimprove human instruction, in this pointed language, “Why and deed his own instruction, and should ye be siricken any more! in such cases, he takes them into ye will revolt more and more.” his owo hand, and gives them that He said to Ezekir) whom he sent kind of instruction, which their to instruct his people, "My peo. case requires. If they need to be ple will not bear you, for they will instructed by losses, or by sickpess, not hear me." God tells them as. or by bereavements, he employs one man, “ Because I have purged such
to instruct them, thee, and thou wast not purged, though he knows they will be thou shalt not be purged any grievous and hard to be borne. more, till I have caused my fury He never sends too few nor too to rest upon thee.” And again, be many, too light or too heavy says, “ Because I have called, and afflictions. The instructed, there. ye refused ; I have stretched out fore, never have any reason to my hand, and no man regarded, disregard the time, or manner, or but ye have set at nought all my duration of the painful instructions counsel, and would of none of my be gives them. As soon as they reproof. I will laugb at your ca. learn what they need to learn by lamity, I will mock when your the things which they suffer, he fear cometh.' Tbere is another will remove their burdens, and threatening still more expressive give them beauty for ashes, the of God's displeasure towards every oil of joy for mourning, and the despiser and abuser of divine garment of praise for the spirit of warnings, admonitions, and instrucbeaviness.
tions. " He that being often re4. If God teaches in such a proved, bardeneth his neck, shall manner as we have heard; then suddenly be destroyed, and that those who disregard or abuse his without remedy.” Hence, instructions are extremely crimin. 5. Those who are under the be. al. They reject the best instruc- reaving, chastising, and instructive tions and manifest the most obsti. hand ot God, are in a very critical, nate and unteachable spirit, which trying, and dangerous situation. is highly displeasing to God. He God does not afflict them willingly requires them to be still and hum- nor undesignedly. He does not ble themselves under his mighty take them under his own immedi. hand; but their hearts rise in di- ate instruction for nothing. He rect enmity and opposition to him, intends to answer some wise and while he is using the most proper holy purpose by all the trails, afand powerful means to teach them fictions, and bereavements, with humiliation and self-abasement. which he visits them. He always For such a spirit he severely re means to make them better or proves them. He upbraids them worse, by all the dispensations ?
his providence towards them, and and express that patience and he never fails of answering his submission, which the prophet did, original designs. He afflicted and when he said, “I will bear the bereaved Job for his good. He indigoation of the Lord, because I brought him to a cordial and un- have sinned, until he plead my reserved submission to his be. cause and execute judgment for reaving and correcting hand, and me.” But they have great ground eventually caused light to arise' to fear, that they sball misimprove out of darkness, joy out of sor- and abuse divine corrections and row, and good out of all the evils instructions, and come forth from he suffered. He tried, afflicted, the furnace of affliction, not like scourged, and taught Manasseh, by gold porified and refined; but the briars and thorns, till he hum. like what men call · reprobate bled himself greatly, returned to silver, because the Lord has rehim cordially, and became his jected them. Those who are dutiful and obedient servant. But externally afflicted have reason to God designed in chastising Pha- tremble for fear, lest they shall raoh time after time, to prepare refuse to learn , obedience by the him for his final overtbrow; and things they suffer, and, to humble he designed in chastising the frow. themselves under the right hand ard Israelites year
year, for of God, which can save or destroy. forty years together, aot to pre- Trials and afflictions are the most pare them to enter Canaan, but to powerful means God ever employs fall and perish in the wilderness. to soften or barden the hearts of In all these instances, God an
When they sensibly feel, swered his different purposes of that he is using these powerful making some better and
means with them, they have reaworse, some the ressels of mercy son to realize their critical aod and some the vessels of wrath. dangerous condition. They may And he always means to answer now be hearing the loudest and the one, or the other of these pur- most solemn calls to submission, poses ip chastising and instructiog repentance, reformation, and obeboth saints and sinners. He tells dience, that they ever will hear them plainly, that so long as they before they meet the king of terare in affliction, they are in a state rors and lie down in everlasting of trial, and that their trials will sorrow. The afflicted are to be do them good or hurt, accordingly pitied, not only only on account of as they improve or misimprove their suffering, but more especialthem. If they are wise, they will ly on account of their dangerous neither despise the chastening of situation.
They are in extreme, the Lord, nor faint when they are danger of turning off their atten: rebuked of him. They will feel tion from God, and eternity, and
the salvation of their souls, and son of heaven, “I lehelil, and lo, fixing their eyes, and hearts, and a great mulitude, which no man hopes upon the foolish, burtful, could number, of all nations, and and ensnaring object of this world, kindreds, and people, and tongues which drown men in remediless stood before the throne, and be. perdition.
fore the Lamb, clothed with white 6. It appears from what has robes, and palms in their hands; been said, that those whom God and cried with a loud voice, saya. internally as well as externally ing, Salvation to our God, who teaches by the afflictive dispensa- sitieth upon the throne, and unto tions of providence, have great the lamb. And all the angels reason to be thankful for bis s; ir. istood round about the throne, and itual instructions. Sanctified af- about the elders, and the four fictions are among the richest of beasts, and sell before the throne divine favours. David gratefully on their faces, and worsbipped acknowledged, that it had been God, saying, Amen ; Blessiug, and good for him that he had hern glory and wisdom, and thank givafflicted. The primitive christians ing, and honor, and power, and often expressed their gratitude for 'might, be unto our God forever the afflictions they were called to and ever. Amen. And one of suffer. The apostle says to the the elders answered, saying unto Romans, “We glory in tribulations me, What are these which are aralso, knowing that tribulation rayed in white robes ? and whence 'worketh patience; and pa.ience, 'came they? And I said unto him, experience, & experience hope." Sir, thou knowest.
." Sir, thou knowest. And he said He says to the Corinthians, “Our unto me, These are they which light affliction, which is but for a came out of great tribulation, and moment, worketh for us a far have washed their robes, and more exceeding and eternal weight made them white in the blood of of glory; while we look 'not at the Lamb. Therefore they are the things which are seen, but at before the throne of God, and the things which are not seen : serve him day and night in his for the things which are seen are temple; and he that sitieth on temporal, but the things which the throne shall dwell
among are not seen are eternal.” Such them. They shall hunger no more a source of hope and happi. neither thirst any more, neither
in this life, afflic. shall the sun light on them, nor tions to those who wisely im- any heat. For the Lamb which prove them; and this source of is in the midst of the throne shall happiness never fails but continues feed them, and shall lead them through the endless ages of eter. unto living fountains of waters ; nity. Saint Joho says in his vis- and God shall wipe away all tears
from their eyes." What a rich and receive any benefit from their af: Jasting source of happiness are fictions, if they neglect to pray, sanctified afflictions to those that God woull teach them to who wisely improve them to the profit? Can any parents expect, glory of God and to their own that the death of a son or daugh good! Well might the primitive ter will be sanctified to them, if christians glory in tribulations, they neglect, secret and family while they saw with the eye of prayer ? Can children expect, faith, the future and everlasting that the death of a father or motho good which should flow from them. er, brother or sister will be sanc. Good men never enjoy a better tified to them, if they neglect to opportunity to promote their tem• pray that they may be taught of poral, spiritual, and eteroal inter. God? How many afflicted and ests, than while God himself is prayerless families are in this teaching them in the furnace of place ? and how many more afilictaffliction. You have heard of the ed and prayerless persons dwell faith of Abraham and of the pa. among this people ?
All such tience of Job. Their extraordi- persons and families are hardengary faith and patience were the ing their hearts and preparing happy fruits of their no less ex- themselves for heavier afflictions, traordinary trials and afflictions. or remediless destruction. It is Saints like the palm tree, are the time for all the afflicted, all the most flourishing and fruitful under stupid, all the impenitent, and all the lowest depressions. They the unbelieving, to rise and call are then the best capable and upon God to prepare them for best disposed to receive the best death and eternity. instructions from the word and providence of God.
The whole tenor of this discourse now teaches all the afflict.
For the Christian Magazine. ed, to pray for divine teaching Exegesis OF Romans, 8, 19.-For s lf any are afflicted, let them the earnest expectation of the credpray." This is a command of God ture waiteth for the manifestation of which binds old and young, high the sons of God. and low, saints and sinners. If The sons of God, evidently God has taken away a son or meap christians—those, who have daughter from any, let them pray. been regenerated by the Holy It God has taken away a father Spirit.
66 As many as are led by or mother from any, let them the Spirit of God, they are the pray. If God has taken away a sons of God.”
Through the spirit brother or sister from any, Let of adoption, they cry, Abba, Fathem pray. Can any expect to ther. - The Spirit
, itself bearetka