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as the strongest appeal, and most unchangeable motive that can govern our actions at all times. However, as every good argument on the side of religion should in proper times be made use of -it is fit sometimes to examine this,—by proving virtue is not even destitute of a present reward,—but carries in her hand a sufficient recompence for all the self-denials she may occasion :-she is pleasant in the way,
as well as in the end ;--her ways being ways of pleasantness, and all her paths peace. But it is her greatest and most distinguished glory,—that the befriends us hereafter, and brings peace at the last;-—and this is a portion she can never be disinherited of,—which may God of his mercy grant us all, for the sake of Jesus Christ.
PHILIPPIANS - iii, 20. Ist Part. .
For our conversation is in heaven.
THESE words are the conclusion of the
1 account which St. Paul renders of himself, to justify that particular part of his conduct and proceeding, his leaving so strangely, and deserting his Jewish rites and ceremonies, to which he was known to have been formerly so much attached, and in defence of which he had been so warmly and so remarkably engaged. This, as it had been matter of provocation against him amongst his own countrymen the Jews, fo was it ino less an occafion of surprize to the Gentiles ;-that a person of his great character, interest and reputation, one who was descended from a tribe of Israel, deeply skilled in the professions, and zealous in the observances of the straiteft fect of that religion; who had their tenets instilled into him from his tender years, under the institution of the ablelt masters ;--a Pharisee himself,--the son of a Pharisee, and brought up at the feet of Gamaliel,-one that was so deeply interested, and an accessary in the persecution of another religion, just then newly come up;-a religion to which his whole fect, as well as himself, had been always the bitterest and most inveterate enemies, and were conftantly upbraided as such, by the first founder of it ;--that a person fo beset, and hem'd in with interests and prejudices on all sides, should after all turn profelyte to the very religion he had hated;-a religion too, under the most universal contempt of any then in the world, --the chief leaders of it men of the lowest birth and education, without any advantages of parts or learning, or other endowments to recommend them :-that he should quit and abandon all his former privileges, to become merely a fellow-labourer with these,—that he should give up the reputation he had acquired amongst his brethren by the study and labours of a whole life ;-that he should give up his friends,—his relations and family, from whom