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lent, that ye may be sincere and without offence, till the day of Christ, being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ unto the glory and praise of God.

"I do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will, in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and long-suffering with joyfulness; giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light; who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son, in whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins.

"The Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, to the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.

"The very God of peace sanctify you wholly, and I pray God, your whole spirit, and soul, and body, be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ: faithful is he that called you, who also will do it.

"Wherefore also, we pray always for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfil all the pleasure of his goodness, and the

work of faith with power, that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and ye in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

"Our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God even our Father which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace, comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work.

"The Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ.

"The Lord of peace himself, give you peace always by all means.

"Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

"The God of peace that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever, Amen.

"Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity.

Grace be to you, and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father.

"Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly, above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto him

be glory in the church by Christ Jesus, throughout all ages, world without end.

"The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all, Amen."

The glorious subject of these petitions cannot be too much studied; the blessings which they contain, cannot be too earnestly implored.

These prayers of the Apostle lead us, as it were, into the inner chamber of his heart. We see what were his inmost desires for the spiritual welfare of his children in the faith. Here, nothing is cold or formal; all is fervent, energetic, affectionate. That which the world derides, and the formalist censures, is the very thing he so ardently supplicated for the churches of Christ: even the RELIGION OF THE HEART, manifesting itself by a supreme delight in Jesus, by a holy renunciation of fleshly lusts, and by an uniform obedience to the Will of God.

The Apostle not only rejoiced over those who were made the subjects of divine grace, and prayed for their continuance in well-doing, but he also laboured with incessant toil for their establishment in the faith.


This truly apostolic spirit is beautifully displayed in his address to the elders of Ephesus "Ye know from the first day that I came into Asia, after what manner I have been with you at all seasons, serving the Lord with all humility of mind, and with many tears and temptations which befel me by the lying in wait of the Jews; and how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you,

but have showed you, and have taught you publicly, and from house to house, testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ. I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men, for I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God. Therefore, watch, and remember that by the space of three years, I ceased not to warn every one, night and day with tears. And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified."

Not having been at Rome when he wrote his Epistle to the Christians of that city, he expressed his desire with peculiar delicacy, that he might be permitted to visit them, for their furtherance in the faith of the Gospel.

"God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the Gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers, making request, if by any means, now at length I might have a prosperous journey, by the will of God to come unto you. For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established; that is, that I may be comforted together with you, by the mutual faith both of you and me.'

As the heart of St. Paul was filled with love and gentleness, so he was equally undaunted in the hour of danger. His Christian heroism was strikingly displayed at Lystra.

Having, as we have seen, been stoned by the

people, he miraculously rose up, and came into the city; and the next day, he departed with Barnabas to Derbe. And when they had preached the Gospel to that city, and had taught many, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and Antioch, confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of heaven. Afterwards he went through Syria and Cilicia, confirming the churches. Then he came once more to Derbe and Lystra; so the churches were established in the faith, and increased in number daily.

The Apostle, regardless of his personal safety, watched over the interests of the infant churches. When persecution was spreading its fires on every side, he trembled for the souls of his spiritual children, lest Satan should get an advantage over them; for he was not ignorant of his devices. He had a deep insight into the human heart, being well acquainted with his own. And knowing that, "as in water, face answereth to face, so the heart of man to man," he was enabled to speak a word in season, and to give such cautions, as were needful to guard believers against those snares which were laid for their feet.

His love, for the souls of men, led him to endure the greatest privations for their salvation and growth in grace. Impelled by this principle, he traversed various regions, that he might plant churches, and water those which were already planted.

No force of opposition could deter him from


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