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he came he could not see him, enjoy him, bel Besides on all other occasions, when they for ever with him. For he has learned to had apprehended things to be otherwise than place all his happiness in him, and it is only they really were, he had set them right. We in proportion as he can experience his pre- see this with regard to his sufferings, and the sence, that he can say, of any situation, “ It nature of his kingdom. is good to be here."
He had kept back nothing that was profitThere is in heaven company of the first able for them. “ Henceforth," says he, “I sort; society the most delicious. There we call you not servants: for the servant knowshall join the innumerable company of angels. eth not what his lord doeth: but I have called There we shall mix with all the truly wise you friends, for all things that I have heard and good. There we shall be introduced to of my Father I have made known unto you." martyrs, apostles, patriarchs. We shall sit And surely he would not have held them in down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the darkness and error in a case of so much conkingdom of God. We shall see those who sequence as this! have gone before us, with whom we were | What room was there for suspicion ? Could once connected by the tender ties of nature they question his love? Had he not abundor of friendship. But Jesus is "the chief of antly proved his readiness to serve them? ten thousand." Whom have we in heaven Was he not even then going to lay down his but him ?-And he cannot be satisfied unless life for them ?-What could be more awful we shall be with him to share in all his ho- than the circumstances he was now in ? He nour and happiness. “To him that over- was now ready to be offered : and do men feel cometh will I grant to sit with me in my inclined to deceive when—dying? throne, even as I also overcame, and am set Conclude we therefore by remarking, First, down with my Father in his throne. Where How unlike our Saviour is the “ god of this I am there shall also my servant be."-Such world.” The god of this world “blindeth the are the contents of this gracious declaration. minds of them that believe not.” He is afraid
But the more important and interesting of the entrance of light. He reigns by deluany intelligence be, the more anxious are we sion. He knows that the end of these things for its certainty. Our Saviour therefore, is death. He knows that even now the plea
II. MEETS THIS STATE OF MIND IN THE sures of sin are not equal to the sorrows of DISCIPLES, AND SAYS—“ If it were not so, I religion. His servants indulge expectations, would have told you." How friendly and every one of which will issue in disappointfamiliar! And yet how convincing and for- ment. He knows this, but he refuses to tell cible is this address! Take it thus.
them so: till, from the blindness of sin, he First. If it had not been so-he could have plunges them into the darkness of hell. told them. For he knew all from the begin- Second. We shall never go on well in rening. He was perfectly acquainted with the ligion till our Lord and Saviour has gained situation of his Father's house; with the works our confidence. And this he surely deserves. and enjoyments of heaven; with the character | He is often better than his promise, but never of the persons who were to possess it; with worse. Let us in all cases run to his word, the way in which it was to be obtained. and consider what he has spoken-if he has
Secondly. If it had not been so he should not said such a thing, it matters not who has have told them. As their professed teacher. | —but if he has spoken it-believe it to be it was his office to rectify their mistakes, and more sure than heaven or earth—for heaven to save them from delusion.
or earth may pass away, but his word shall not Here you will also observe, that he had pass away. If you were not welcome to come always laid a peculiar stress upon a future and take of the water of life freely, he would state in his doctrine. He had endeavoured tell you—if future happiness were a fancy, or to induce them to give up the present for the a dream, he would undeceive you; and not future-to abandon treasures on earth, in ex- suffer you to run and strive in vain. Settle pectation of treasure in heaven. Now if there it therefore in your minds that he will notwere no such state of blessedness and recom- that he cannot delude you. pence-ought he to have suffered them to ! It is expected therefore that the believer's give up every thing that was dear to them confidence in him should be in proportion to here, for the sake of a fool's paradise? He his acquaintance with him. Hence it is said, knew that they had forsaken all to follow him; “ They that know thy name will put their and he knew that in consequence of their ad- trust in thee.” And hence, says the Apostle, herence to him, they would endure persecu- " I know whom I have believed”—my faith tion and death-and if there was nothing to is not a blind, rash confidence-I am sure of indemnify them, should he not have told my ground, therefore I tread firm-I have
proved the character I depend upon, and Thirdly. If it had not been so—he would therefore I unreservedly commit myself to have told them. This follows from the for- him-he is an old friend, a tried friend. How mer. For what was proper for him to do, he many evidences have I had of his kindness, always did.
| veracity, and power! How reproachful would
it be if I could not trust him now! “I know! We have no reason to believe that they whom I have believed, and am persuaded that are acquainted with our circumstances, or can he is able to keep that which I have commit- employ themselves for our welfare-yet for ted to him against that day." If ye will not us they languish, and for us they die. We believe, surely ye shall not be established. may improve their removal; it should draw
Third. What a Master, what a Saviour do us away from earth, and attach us the more we serve! How sincere! How kind ! " His to heaven. And thus their going away will heart is made of tenderness; his bowels melt be for our welfare. When we lose the lives with love." How concerned is he not only of our friends, we should be careful not to lose for the safety, but also for the comfort of his their deaths too. followers! With what a soft hand does he They will not come to receive us to themwipe away their tears! How graciously does selves--but they will welcome us when we he reward them-how infinitely does he proenter their everlasting habitations. The sevide for them! “This is my beloved, and this paration is temporary. A time of re-union is my friend, O) ye daughters of Jerusalem !" will come. We shall see their faces, and hear
Fourth. Are you to fill any of these their voices again in the flesh. O cheerful conmansions?-Is there a place above prepared solation !-how suitable and how sure! "I for you!-How people long to rise in the would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, state! How they envy the great! How happy concerning them which are asleep, that ye would they deem themselves if they could get sorrow not, even as others which have no into such-and such places! To what humi- hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and liations will they submit; what sacrifices will rose again, even so them also which sleep in they be ready to make, to attain such fleeting, Jesus will God bring with him. For this we unsatisfying honours! But what are they say unto you by the word of the Lord, that what can they be to "heavenly places !"-in we which are alive and remain unto the which you are «blessed with all spiritual coming of the Lord shall not prevent them blessings in Christ?"
which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall For whom then are they prepared ? I an- descend from heaven with a shout, with the swer, for those who are prepared for them. voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God makes his people “ meet for the inherit- God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: ance of the saints in light." The vessels of then we which are alive and remain shall be mercy are “afore prepared unto glory.” caught up together with them in the clouds, Others would be only miserable there; even to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we if God had not determined to exclude them. Jever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort But “ The wicked shall not stand in his sight, one another with these words.” he hateth all workers of iniquity: without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever lov
DISCOURSE LIV. eth and maketh a lie." Here nothing that defileth can ever enter. For such as love sin
THE DISCIPLES IN A STORM. there is another place prepared. “For Tophet is ordained of old; yea, for the king it is | And when he was entered into a ship, his disciprepared: he hath made it deep and large : ples followed him. And, behold, there arose the pile thereof is fire and much wood; the a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the breath of the Lord, like a stream of brimstone, ship was covered with the waves : but he doth kindle it." The place indeed was pre was asleep. And his disciples came to him, pared, as our Saviour says, “ for the devil and and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: 76 his angels;" but sinners, by their rejection of perish. And he saith unto them, Why are his grace, will make it their own! It is ye fearful, o ye of little faith? Then he therefore said that Judas, when he died, went
arose and rebuked the winds and the sea to his “ own place.”
and there was a great calm. But the mer Lastly. Let us rejoice in hope. Let us lay
marvelled, saying, What manner of man w open our minds to these everlasting consola
this, that even the winds and the sea obey tions which our Saviour here reveals and in
him !—Matt. viji. 23—27. sures. Let them fill us with a joy unspeak A STORM at sea is one of the sublimest apable and full of glory in all our present trials, pearances in nature. Hence it has often emand especially under the loss of dear and sployed the painter's pencil and the poet's pen. valuable friends.
David, whose genius was very vivid and dis Let us remember that when no longer tinct in its conceptions, has given us an advisible to us, they are not lost. They have mirable representation of this impressive reached their Father's house. They are dis- scene. “They that go down to the sea in ships posed of infinitely to their advantage. And that do business in great waters; these see this should subdue the selfishness of our grief. the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the If we love them, we ought to rejoice in their deep. For he commandeth and raiseth the promotion.
| stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof. They mount up to the heaven, they , their minds; but rather be emboldened and go down again to the depths: their soul is confirmed. “O my soul, did He not tell me melted because of trouble. They reel to this? Did he not assure me that in the and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and world I should have tribulation—that, as a are at their wits' end. Then they cry unto traveller, I must look for some unfavourable the Lord in their trouble, and he bringeth weather and disagreeable road--that there them out of their distresses. He maketh the would be a slough, a hill of difficulty, a valley storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are of humiliation—and here they are! I am still. Then are they glad because they are right. Here David sighed. Here Paul quiet: so he bringeth them unto their desired groaned. These are way-marks which they haven."
have thrown up. I am journeying the same Let us repair this evening to the lake of way; the way everlasting.'” Galilee, and behold a vessel in a storm, con- ! For want of having this truth present to taining the twelve apostles and the Lord of the mind, many Christians who are more adall. The narrative is every way instructive vanced in the divine life, have been confoundand useful. And was written for our learned and dismayed. All misery wears the ing. The circumstances are six. They are character of sin, of which it is the consethese—THE STORM AROSE WHILE THE DISCI-quence; it naturally therefore reminds us of PLES WERE FOLLOWING OUR Lord. WHILE it. God is the source of all light and joy; THEY WERE ALARMED, HE WAS ASLEEP. IN and when we see nothing of the one, and THEIR DISTRESS THEY IMPLORE HIS ASSIST-feel nothing of the other, it is not easy to beANCE. HE REPROVES THEIR FEARS. HE lieve that he is present with us. We are COMMANDS THEIR DELIVERANCE. HE DRAWS ready to say, with Gideon, “ . If the Lord be FORTH THEIR ADMIRATION AND PRAISE. with us, why then is all this evil befallen us?'
They sailed in a calm, and soon encoun- Surely he would have hindered all this. tered a storm. It is the emblem of life; at Surely, if he had it in his power, a father least the life of many. They launched forth would keep a child from every thing hurtful; into the world with fair appearances and and a benefactor, a friend. How then can high-raised expectations; but they had not God be my benefactor and father, when, proceeded far before the clouds gathered though he could by a single volition cure all blackness, the sky was overspread, the winds my complaints, he suffers me from week to howled, the waves roared, and they said, with week to struggle with poverty, pine in sick. Hezekiah, “Behold, for peace I had great ness, and groan under disappointment! If I bitterness.” It is the emblem of many a par-I am his, why am I thus?" But here we err. ticular enterprise; for so unanswerable often We do not consider that his thoughts are not is the end of a thing to the beginning of it, our thoughts, nor his ways our ways that that prudence as well as Scripture, seems to though his love be real, it is also wise that say, “ Boast not thyself of to-morrow, for though no chastening for the present seemeth thou knowest not what a day may bring to be joyous, but grievous, nevertheless afforth."
terward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of But we are not only taught that we may righteousness to them that are exercised sail in a calm, and meet with a storm ;-we thereby. Hence it is not said, Blessed is the may encounter one even when sailing with man that escapes, but “ blessed is the man Christ. This was the case here. They that endureth temptation; for when he is were acting in obedience to his authority and tried, he shall receive a crown of life.” Afflicin compliance with his example: “ When he tions are the same to the soul as the plough was entered into a ship, his disciples followed to the fallow ground, the pruning-knife to the him; and, behold, there arose a great tem- vine, and the furnace to the gold. Let none, pest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was on the other hand, conclude that they are covered with the waves." How is this? right because they are prosperous. Success He could have prevented the fury of the is flattering not only to our wishes, but to elements, and have given them a peaceful our pride; and when we are very warm in and pleasant passage over. But then he any cause, we are prone to consider every would not have taught us so much. Parti- favourable circumstance as expressive of dicularly we should have wanted a confirma-vine approbation. But did God approve of tion of this truth-that prosperous gales do Jonah's flight because, when he came down not always attend us in the prosecution of to the sea-shore, he found a ship just ready duty. And yet this is a very important les to sail ? What says poetry? son. It is of great utility to the young, who
“God's choice is safer than our own : are just beginning a religious course. It will
Of ages past inquire prevent their expecting exemption from trials
What ihe most formidable fate?
To have our own desire." and difficulties; it will lead them to believe that these things may occur, will occur: and What saith the Scripture? “He gave thus when the evil day comes they will not them their heart's desire, but sent loannese think it strange, or grow weary and faint in into their soul."
Secondly. WHILE HIS DISCIPLES WERE of his disciples, and show us that he may be PERPLEXED AND ALARMED, “HE WAS ASLEEP." with his people in a storm, and yet seem to O sleep, thou soft, downy enemy! how be indifferent; seem to see nothing, hear no much of our time, our short, our uncertain, thing, feel nothing. Thus it was with Abraour all-important time dost thou rob us of! ham: his deliverer did not interpose to say, His whole life was an illustration of his re- Forbear, till the hand had grasped the knife, mark—"I must work the works of Him that and was stretched out to use it. Thus it was sent me while it is day: the night cometh, with the Jews in Egypt. He had engaged, wherein no man can work.” He never spoke at the end of four hundred and thirty years, an idle word; never spent an idle hour. He to deliver them; but he seemed to have forwas in watchings often: we read of his teach-gotten the promise: the very last day of this ing early in the temple; of his rising a great long period was arrived—but be awoke in while before day and praying; of his going time; and before the returning dawn all the up into a mountain, and continuing all night host of the Lord had escaped !-He defers in prayer to God. Now for once we read of these interpositions to render them the more his sleeping. We may take three views divine and wonderful. His glory never shines of it.
so brightly as on tbe dark ground of human It was a sleep of refreshment. Wearied despair. When creatures have withdrawn, nature required repose in him as well as in and the eye sees nothing all around but desous. For though he was divine, he was also lation, then, if he approaches us, he must be truly and properly a man, and was possessed / seen, and be welcomed with peculiar joy and of all our sinless infirinities. At one time praise: while by such a dispensation he says we find him upon the road begging a draught to his people in all future ages"Never des of cold water; at another, he hungered and pond; I can turn the shadow of death into found no food on the fig-tree. He was now | the morning; at eventide it shall be light." heavy to sleep, and like a labouring man
** Just in the last distressing hour such he was-his sleep was sweet; and re
The Lord displays delivering power; gardless of delicate accommodations, he
The mount of danger is the place
Where we shall see surprising grace." could lie down and enjoy it even in a fishing ship, and in a storm!
In the mean time he exercises our faith and This renders the sleep wonderful. There patience, and calls forth our desires after h'ın. could have been no fear, no uneasiness with. He knew that his disciples would soon apply in: all was secure and serene. Some of you, to him; and so they did. it is probable, could not sleep in a storm. It is the Third circumstance in the relation Judas was now on board. I dare say Judas “THEY CAME TO HIM AND AWOKE HIM, &AFcould not sleep. What a hell would his ING, LORD, SAVE US: WE PERISH." It has avarice produce in his guilty conscience! been said that those who would learn to pray, But see Jacob. He is journeying alone; the should go to sea; and one would suppose that shades of the night descend; yet he "takes danger so imminent and sensible would prothe stones of the place for a pillow, and lays duce this effect. But, alas! many have rehimself down to sleep!" David abroad in the turned from sea without learning to pray. field, in the rebellion of Absalom, and when Perhaps indeed they prayed while the storm he had few troops with him, said, “I will continued—but their devotion sunk faster both lay me down and sleep, for thou, Lord, than the winds and waves. How many are only makest me dwell in safety." Peter, in there who consider prayer as a task to be perthe night preceding his designed execution, formed in perilous circumstances, but not was “sleeping between two soldiers" so their daily duty, their constant privilege! soundly, that the angel was obliged to strike We read of some birds that never make a a blow, as well as a light, in order to awake noise but at the approach of foul weather; him. “So he giveth his beloved sleep!” | and there are persons who never cry to God Happy they whose minds are tranquillized by but “when his chastening hand is upon them." the blood of sprinkling. Happy they, who, -What would you think of a neighbour, who though sensible of daily infirmities, can say, never called upon you but when he wanted Our “rejoicing is this, the testimony of our to borrow or beg? Would you not say, What consciences that in simplicity and godly sin- a selfish wretch! he has no regard for me; cerity, not with fleshly wisdom, but by the he thinks of nothing but his own convenigrace of God, we have had our conversation ence? And what can God think of your in the world.” Happy they who can this religion, if you never seek him but in trouble! evening retire, and feel a comparative indif- ! And yet we are authorized to say, that ference to life or death; who can say, If I live, trials have frequently been the means of it will be to serve thee; and if I die, it will bringing a man to God: he and God first met be to enjoy thee.
in affliction; but a friendship for life was the Again. The sleep was designed, and our consequence. I cannot therefore but look Saviour had a particular end to answer by it. I hopefully towards a man who is brought into He would try the disposition and dependence I trouble; just as when I see a smith putting a bar of iron into the fire, I conclude that he not reprove them for their prayer—but their is going to do something with it, to form out fear. They were in a needless panic. They of it some useful implement, which could not talked of perishing, not considering who be done while it was cold and hard. In his was with them; and that they could not sink affliction Manasseh sought the Lord. Upon without his sinking too. His safety proved the same principle, thousands have had reason their security. Therefore he saith unto them, to say, “It is good for me that I have been “Why are ye fearful, o ye of little faith ?" afflicted."—We may also observe, that as And hereby he shows us—that our alarms trials are useful to begin, so they are employ- originate in the want of faith—that faith may ed to assist a life of prayer. For Christians indeed be real where it is little—but that be. themselves sometimes grow too careless and ing little, it renders us liable to apprehensions insensible. God hears from them less fre- and dismay-and that if a small degree of quently, less fervently than before. Other faith will be sufficient for fine weather sailing, things amuse thein and engage them. But a greater is nécessary in a storm-a faith ashow differently do they feel in the hour of sured of our union with him; clear in its views mortification and disappointment! “Where of his power and love; and firm in its dependis God my Maker, that giveth songs in the ence upon his promise. night? Therefore will I look unto the Lord, But oh! in what manner did our Lord utter I will wait for the God of my salvation, my this reproof? It is impossible to do justice to God will hear me."
those lips into which grace was poured, and
which spake as never man spake. But had "Now I forbid my carnal hope, My fond desires recall;
we heard him, I am persuaded his tone of I give my mortal interest up,
voice would have been more expressive of And make my God my ali."
kindness than severity. It would have been By this you may judge whether your storms the address of one who pitied while he blamed; are blessings or curses. Do they make you who was touched with the feeling of their inpassionate or prayerful? Are you quarreling firmities; who knew their frame, and rememwith the winds and waves, or spreading the bered they were but dust; who knew the case before the Lord ? Are you looking to influence outward things have upon the body, creatures, or to him who has them all under and the influence the body has upon the mind. his command, and “in all our affliction is He would not therefore keep them in sus. afflicted ?" "I would seek unto God, and pense, but unto God would I commit my cause: which | Fifthly: it is said, “ THE-HE AROSE AND doeth great things and unsearchable; marvel REBUKED THE WINDS AND THE SEA, AND lous things without number.”
THERE WAS A GREAT CALM.” What a scene Fourthly. Our LORD REPROVES HIS DISCI. was here! I see him opening his eyes—but PLES. But observe, I beseech you, for what not with surprise. Nothing astonished him it is that he censures them. It is not for through life. I see him going upon deckbreaking in upon his repose. Some of you not in haste. Haste is the effect of confusion may remember the confinement of one hun--he had always too much to do to be ever dred and forty-six Englishmen in what is in haste. I see him facing the storm.--But called the black hole at Calcutta. It would what said he? He “rebuked” the winds and harrow up the feelings of your souls were I the sea. To rebuke is a word that we apply to relate the sufferings of these brave men, to intelligent creatures only. We talk of redriven into a dungeon, wbich was a cube of buking a servant or a child—but not a tree eighteen feet, walled up eastward and south-or a stone. Thus the storm is personified ward, the only quarters whence refreshing air and addressed as if it could hear him; and it could come, and open westward by two small did hear him and obey. And “there was a windows barred with iron—all this under a great calm!” Those who are acquainted melting sky-and many of the men wound with the sea know that after a storm is ed! But what I refer to is this. The cries hushed, the deep continues for a consideraof these sufferers at last were such as to pre- ble time to rise and fall and fret. But the vail on one of the enemy's soldiers to go and sea now immediately subsided from its raging, implore relief of the Suba or Chief. But he and spread into a smooth surface. For his soon returned, saying that the Suba was work is perfect. He doth all things well. asleep, and that it was upon pain of death any | And the execution honours him as much as one dared to awake him before the time—and the design. before he awoke many of them had expired!! But Finally. What effect had all this upon -But it is not so with thee, O blessed Jesus, his disciples? They are not only convinced, thou Saviour of the world! Thou despisest but impressed: they not only believe with the not thy prisoners. We cannot by our con-heart," but “confess with the tongue:” and, tinual coming weary thee. Thou hast always filled with ADMIRATION AND PRAISE at such an ear to which misery is welcome. The a peculiar and unexampled display of perfecgroans of a broken heart are as delightful to tion, “they marvelled, saying, What manChce as the songs of angels. No: he does ner of man is this, that even the winds and