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mises of the God of Israel respecting them-or the present aspect of his dispensations both in providence and grace-all these things are pointing the same way, and pressing upon Chistians the immediate duty of promoting, by all human means, the conversion and salvation of the dispersed Jews. Too long have this once favored but now scattered and depressed people been neglected already. Too long have they been left to mourn in the language of their ancient Psalmist and Monarch, "No man careth for my soul." It is now high time that Christians should awake to a sense of their duty respecting them, and commence in earnest the benevolent work of imparting to them the consolations of the gospel.
Let us, my brethren, think of this subject ourselves, and endeavour in view of it to ascertain our own duty. We profess to be Christians-to be disciples and followers of the Messiah of the Jews. Consequently the remarks which have been made are all applicable to us, and the reasons which have been given why Christians should attempt the conversion of the Jews, are reasons why we should unite personally in such an attempt. Are they not sufficiently. powerful to satisfy us on this point, and leave but the single question to be decided, What can we do? What does our Lord expect and require us to do, in this important work?—And obviously we all can unite in it, in our affections, and our prayers. We can follow it with our best wishes, and implore the God of Israel to crown it with success. And must we stop here? Can we do no more? For the blinded descendants of our father Abraham-those through whom we have received the precious word of Godthose whose spiritual interests he has committed specially to us, and upon whose conversion he has sus
pended the richest blessings to his Church ;-for these have we no offering to present, and no labor of love to perform? Let us endeavour to view this subject, as it will appear to us in the final day; and answer these questions now, as we have reason to believe we . should, were they pressed upon us from the throne of judgment. And let no considerations deter us from acting, in this case, and in all cases, conformably to our most serious convictions of duty.
IDOLATRY AMONG CHRISTIANS.
Colossians, iii. 5.
CHRISTIANS at the present day hear much and often concerning the various species of idolatry which are practised in different parts of the world. The Catholicks worship a piece of bread, under the impression that it is the real body of their Saviour. They also render a kind of worship to their pictures of Christ, of the virgin Mary, and of other saints. The Tartars worship a fellow mortal styled the grand Lama, in whom they believe that the Divinity resides. Many have worshipped the sun, moon, and stars, and also fire. Others have worshipped, and probably do still, brute animals of several species, and insects, and vegetables. While millions and millions are devoted to the worship of dumb, inanimate idols, of brass and iron, wood and stone.-No enlightened person can contemplate these facts, without mourning over the deep debasement to which the human faculties are subject; and no Christian can hear of the obscenities and cruelties with which most of the heathen idols are served, without feeling disgusted and "pained at the very heart."
But, my friends, while we pity and detest the abominations of the heathen, and cherish a disposition to
do all we consistently can for their conversion and salvation; it becomes us seriously to inquire. Is there no idolatry practised among ourselves? Are none of us guilty of loving, serving, and in fact worshipping something rather than the great God? The text should lead us to suspect that this may be the case; for we here find it asserted, on the authority of inspiration, that “ covetousness is idolatry ;”—and why should covetousness be declared idolatry, more than several other evil affections of the proud and selfish heart?—In the ensuing discourse, I propose to inquire, I. What is idolatry? And,
II. Whether any of us are in fact guilty of this gross and detestable sin?
Idolatry, my friends, is not merely the overt act of prostrating one's self before a graven image, a picture, or any other created being or thing, with the intent of worshipping it. Were this alone to be considered idolatry, covetousness could not be idolatry, and the declaration of the apostle would not be true. -Idolatry, in the essence of it, is the putting of some created object into the place of the uncreated God. It is the allowing of some thing other than God to occupy that place in our affections, which ought to be occupied by him alone.-We obviously ought to regard the God who made us with supreme love. If then we withdraw our hearts from him, and suffer our warmest affections to fasten on any other object; we are idolaters.-We ought to trust in the Almighty for protection and support, and to make him the object of our highest confidence. If then we turn away from him, and place our confidence and dependence on any created arm; we are idolaters. It belongs to the Divine Being, as God, that we should make him our portion, and seek our chief happiness in him. We
should ever regard him as the infinite Fountain, and the best of created objects as merely streams. But if, instead of doing this, we are willing to make the world our portion, and are seeking our happiness in worldly objects; are we not idolaters ?—It is clearly our duty to the God who made us, to submit to him as our supreme and rightful Governor. Let what will come in competition with his commands, it should be cheerfully dispensed with, that he may be obeyed. We also owe it to him, to hold every thing we possess in subserviency to his honor, and the advancement of his holy cause. We should live, not unto ourselves, but for him. Whether we "eat, or drink, or whatever we do, we should do all to his glory." But if, instead of this, we choose and serve some other master, rather than him; if we can dispense with his commands sooner than with our own selfish desires and purposes; or if we are exerting ourselves for some private object, more than for the advancement of his kingdom and glory; are we not putting other things in the place of God, and becoming idolaters ?
Covetousness is idolatry, because it is the loving, craving, trusting to, and seeking our happiness in, uncertain riches. It is putting our worldly possessions in the place of God, and rendering them the homage of our hearts. But on the same principle it may be shown, that pride, selfishness, ambition, and a love of pleasure, are idolatry.-The God we profess to worship" looketh on the heart," and will judge of us according to the state and feelings of our hearts. If we "worship him in spirit and in truth," he will regard and accept us as sincere worshippers; but if we place other objects above him in our hearts,