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pointed station, to cultivate his talents, and improve his time. This life is the only state of doing what our hand findeth to do. In the grave there is no exercife of knowledge, wisdom, or power; for there all the thoughts perish. There the device of the ingenious, and the knowledge of the learned, are at an end: there the wifdom of the prudent is confounded, and the voice of the eloquent is dumb there the joy that sparkles in the eye of pleasure, and the hope that pants in the bofom of ambition, is extinct: there too the time of trial expires, and, what is more, eternity begins; that eternity, which brings with it unchangeable happiness or mifery.
And far off the grave cannot be from any of us in the midft of life we are in death, and no man can fay, that this very night or hour his foul may not be required. The fame voice, which pronounced acclamations to the happy bridegroom in the morning, has, more than once, uttered in the evening, over the breathlefs bride, the folemn fentence of "Earth to earth, duft to duft, ashes to "afhes." This therefore every man fhould keep steadily in view, as the great motive to action. It is not, indeed, neceffary that we H 2 fhould
fhould always have the image of death before our eyes: life has its joys and its duties, which justly claim their share of attention from us: but our mortality fhould be a fixed and steady principle, and fhould never wander far from our thoughts. And far, one would think, it could not wander. It meets us in every street and at every hour: the air we breathe, and the earth we tread upon, are full of it. Cart we, therefore, want a monitor to remind us, that the first great law of nature is, "Duft "thou art, and unto duft fhalt thou res "turn?"
Delay not then, my friends, to work out your falvation, whilst it is called to-day. The days of darkness are coming, in which no man can work. Even before they come, fickness may cut the thread of life, or chance dethrone the powers of reafon. Or, even if this should not happen; if the evening of life fhould fteal on us by gentle gradations, and laft long; little fhall we then be able to work the work of falvation. The various evils of nature, the infirmities of a decrepid body, and the debility of a languid mind, will be enough for us to bear: fufficient to the day will be the evil thereof: we need not add to it painful
ful reflections upon our paft follies, and the ftinging reproaches of paft guilt: we need not add the heavy load of repenting old habits, and beginning new ones: it will be enough for us to collect the fcattered fragments of human refolution, and to prepare for the great change that awaits us when the night is come,
But if we have been wife enough to do with our might whatever we found to do ;— if we are doomed to fall in the morning of youth, whilst the heart of parental fondness beats high in our favour, and the eye of expectation was looking forward to distant scenes of reputation and honour ;-or, if we are cut down in the meridian vigour of age, when domeftic peace encircles our hours with joy, and the artlefs fmiles of unfheltered innocence are pleading to us for protection and support; -however hard our lot may feem;-however we may disappoint the vanity of human, expectation, we shall fall in the discharge of our duty, and may therefore depend upon being rewarded by that God, who giveth to every man according to his work and if our days be lengthened, we fhall then have the
pleafing reflection upon our past wisdom to confole our present infirmities, and the joyful expectation of happiness to animate our future hopes;—we fhall quit life, conscious of having discharged the business for which we came into it ;--we shall defcend to that grave, whither we are all going, with the firm refolution of men, and the animated hope of Chriftians.
ON GOOD FRIDAY.
I JOHN iv. 9.
In this was manifefted the love of God towards us, because that God fent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through bim.
HE fame apoftle, in another place, tells us, that God is love. And could any man want to be convinced of fo clear a propofition, we need only refer him to the whole frame and conftitution of nature around us. Whereever we turn our eyes, we meet the footsteps of a kind and indulgent Providence, the traces and fignals of a God of univerfal love, even from the first moment of our birth to the prefent hour.--From nothing he called us into existence and with what view? Only that he might shower down upon us the riches