To perfuade men to receive and obey the gofpel, they declared the confequences to those who received, and to those who rejected it-that the fame Jefus who had died on the cross, was appointed by the Father," to be the Judge of quick and dead-that he would come again in like manner as he had gone away-that all mankind must appear before his judgment feat to give an account of themselves, and receive the deeds done in the body," that those who flee for refuge to the hope of the gospel, will find mercy, and be made forever happy with God, but those who neglect the gospel will be fent away into everlasting punishment.

SUCH interefting truths, thofe minifters of Christ laid before mankind, and left with them for their confideration. But they used no rhetoric to impress them. Neither did they appeal to the paffions of their hearers; in which they followed the pattern fet them by their Lord, who ". did not ftrive, nor cry, nor caufe any man to hear his voice in the ftreets." With only a fair ftatement of thefe truths, accompanied with the offer of "mercy and grace to help in time of need," they left mankind to choose for themselves and abide the confequences.

THIS fome have thought an improper manner of calling men into the kingdom of Chrift; that had they been more pathetic in their addreffes, and more argumentative in their applications, they would have labored with more effect; that this plain and fimple method is unworthy of God, and not likely to be from him.

If we confider the nature and defign of Christianity, fuch objections will have little weight. It is not the defign of heaven to compel men to obey the gospel, or to drive them to an unwilling fubmiffion to Chrift. If an exhibition of gospel truth and beauty, and the confequences of receiving or rejecting its overtures, are disregarded; if men refuse, by these means to be perfuaded, they are left, and the confequences follow. To people of fober fenfe, this method appears rational. It is not probable that those who are not thus prevailed with to embrace the gofpel, would in any other way be made Chriftians indeed. People who are frightened into religion feldom perfevere, Neither do thofe whofe paffions are fo inflamed that they appear, for a time, in ecftafies. When their paffions fubfide, they grow cool, and their religion dies. If the great truths of religion, laid before men, as was done by Chrift and his apoftles, do not avail to render them rationally and fincerely religious, little value is to be put on thofe heats of imagination, which produce tempo.. rary raptures, and fet fome on fire in religion. Such ardent love doth not abide ; it foon cools, and commonly leaves thofe who had been the fubjects of it no better than it found them, and but too often much worse.


BUT while fome object to the fimplicity of the gofpel, and to the plain language and addrefs of the primitive miniftry, others are offended at the myfteries in the Chriftian fyftem. "Who can understand fome things contained in what is

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called a revelation? And what valuable ends can be answered by a revelation which is unintelligible? say these objectors.

BUT, thofe points in the Christian scheme, which are too deep for human comprehenfion, do not relate to practice. All required, in relation to them, is an affent to their truth, on the credit of God's word. This is neither difficult nor un. reasonable.

PERHAPS with only human powers, it may be impoffible to comprehend those subjects which are left myfterious in divine revelation; but are they incredible if God hath declared them? Few would be the articles of our creed, did we admit the belief of nothing which we do not understand. We carry myfteries in ourselves. We are compounded of foul and body, but who explain the connexion; tell us the effence of either the one or the other, or define the principles on which the foul commands the body? We are loft in ourselves, and in all the objects which surround us.

WHATEVER God hath declared, we are bound to believe because he hath declared it; and whatever he hath enjoined, we are bound to do because he hath enjoined it, though the reasons of his in- j junctions may not be revealed. God is under no obligations to explain matters to us. "God is greater than man. Why doft thou ftrive with him? He giveth not account of his matters."

OTHERS object because the Gospel is not sent to all nations. That God fhould be fuppofed to communicate it to fome, and not to others, they

allege to be unreasonable, and fufficient to deftroy its credit; especially, as the book which claims to be a revelation teacheth that "there is no refpect of perfons with God."

THAT God makes his creatures to differ refpecting talents and advantages, is a truth not to be denied. Those who on this account, object to the truth of the gofpel, will not deny it. If God makes differences refpecting every thing elfe, why not refpecting religion? Where is the injuftice or impropriety of trying fome with gofpel advantages; others only with the light of nature? If requirements vary with betruftments, none have reafon to complain; and that this is the cafe is plainly the language of revelation.*

WITH equal reafon might the hand of God in creation be denied, because different grades are found among creatures, and some have greatly the advantage over others; and in providence because its diftributions are unequal. That thefe inequalities are obfervable, and that they are the work of God, will be acknowledged by all who believe the being of a God, and his providential government. If any are difpofed to call thefe in question, we turn from them. To reafon with them would be in vain. "That which may be known of God is manifeft in them; for God hath fhewed it unto them. For the invifible things of him, from the creation of the world, are clearly feen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; fo that they are without excufe."

* Vid. Difcourfe on Romans, ii. 11.

A SCOFFING age may cry out against Chriftianity. To some it may be a "ftumbling block; to others foolishness." Men may exclaim against the gofpel, and against the doctrines and duties of it, and the means which have been used of God to propagate it. Still the foolishness of God is wifer than men, and the weakness of God is ftronger than men." So it hath been in times paft; fo it will be in times to The foolish, the weak and bafe things of the world, have confounded and brought to nought, all the world termed wife, and great, and mighty.


IMPERIAL Rome at the fummit of her greatnefs, could not crush the cause of him who died on Calvary !" Had this counsel or work been of men, it would have come to nought." Probably the name of Jefus, would long ere now have perished from the earth. But all his enemies could do nothing effectually against him. They could on. ly do" what God's counsel had determined to be done.

CHRISTIANITY hath ftill its enemies; of the fame character with those of old. They have overthrown the faith of fome. Others they may feduce. That "fcoffers fhould arife, in the last days walking after their own lufts; that fome fhould deny the Lord that bought them, and that many should follow their pernicious ways," were foretold by an inspired apostle, and "they turn to us for a teftimony."

WE are called a Chriftian people. "If we believe the gospel, happy are we if The generality profefs to believe it.

we obey it." But how is it

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