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tifying impression made by the awes ful sense of his being and attributes would be destroyed, if these ideas were not guarded and fenced round by habitual reverence. He was not only to be the sole object of faith and of worship, but his very name was to be kept sacred, and never in- ' troduced but when the heart was seriously inclined to do him homage. id
“ Thou shalt not take the nanie of " the Lord thy God in vain, for the “ Lord will not hold him guiltless “ that taketh his name in vain !"
Then follows the law which in its due observance could not fail to seal the principles of faith upon the heart. I have in another place* observed upon the wisdom of appointing a certain stated period to be, as often as
* See Letters on the Elementary Principles of Education, vol. ii, letter 3.
it returns, appropriated to the special service of God. I have shewn that from the nature of the human mind it is impossible without such assistance to preserve the spirit of devotion in the soul. You cannot as yet be supposed capable of entering into the force of all the arguments there employed; but you may so far comprehend the scope and meaning of them as to be sensible that, as our attention is necessarily engaged by our present occupations, they will, whether they be those of business or of pleasure, lead our thoughts from God. To keep alive upon our hearts a sense of his divine presence, we must therefore be often obliged forcibly to recal our minds from other objects! But alas ! without divine assistance, how seldoin would this have been accomplished ? God the refore from the beginning of the world
VEL. II. § appointed
appointed the seventh day as a day of remembrance, a day to be sepajated and set apart from the common purposes of life, and appropriated to the particular consideration of the duties we owe to Him who is the maker and governor of all things. No law which tended to the moral improvement of man was ever abrogated by him who appointed it. We accordingly find, that this law, which was given to Adam in a state of innocence, was again solemnly repeated by the voice which issued from the thick cloud that covered Sinai.
“ Remember the Sabbath-day to " keep it holy. Six days shalt thou * labour and do all thy work ; but " the seventh day is the sabbath of the “ Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not “ do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor "thy daughter, nor thy man servant, " nor thy maid servant, nor thy cat
its tle, nor the stranger which is within *thy gates. For in six days the "Lord 'made heaven and earth, the * sea and all that in them is, and terested the seventh day: wherefore " the Lord blessed the seventh day, * and hallowed it.”
Consider with attention the scope and meaning of this divine command. How perfect in wisdom; how infinite in benevolence, was he who framed it! The benefit of a sacred interval of repose from worldly pursuits was not to be confined to any class or description of persons. It was to extend to all.
* Hail, Sabbath ! thee I hail the poor man's
- “ day!”
So, without poetical exaggeration, may it emphatically be pronounced. Even the very animals whom God F%
lias appointed to lend their strength to the feebler race of man, have in this ordinance a charter of rights, which to all generations establishes their claims to a certain portion of rest and comfort.
The other six commandments relate to the social duties, and are founded in the immutable principles of truth and justice. By them men are taught to restrain the selfish passions, and to respect the feelings and rights of their fellow.creatures. Upon all of them, many able commentaries have been written, and many excellent sermons have been preached. These, I make no doubt, will in due time be perused by you with proper attention; but it is not my object, at present, to enter into any discussion upon the subject of particular duties. I only now aim at giving you a general viciw of the support afforded