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lieving and performing them. The Gof. pel hath the Promises and Threatnings of the Life that now is, but more especially of that which is to come ; the present Favour of God's Providence, the future Assurances of a Glorious Inheritance with the Blessed Saints in Light, are the Motives to our Obedience : The Displeasure of the Almighty in this Life, and the Torments of everlasting Vengeance in the next, are the Wages of our Disobedience; and he who will not conform with the Precepts of the Holy Scriptures upon those Motives, will be wrought upon by no Motives whatever. Again, the Asliftances afforded us, are the gracious Influences of God's Blessed Spirit helping our Infirmities, quickening our Endeavours, raising our Affections, and in all respects working in us both to will and do according to the good Pleasure of the Almighty ; so that nothing is required but our own sincere Co-operation with the Divine Grace, and then we may do all things that are commanded us.
UPON the Whole then, it hath pleased Almighty God to vouchsafe us a most
glorious and perfect Revelation of his Blessed Will ; a Revelation unfolding to us the Wonders of his Providence, and dispencing the Riches of his Grace; a Revelation carrying our Prospects into Eternity, proposing to our present Hopes the Glories of God's Kingdom, and qualifying us for the future Enjoyment of them. How full of Awe and Delight are those Sacred Writings ! they are no other than the Word of God; but the Word of God bringing unto us Peace and Salvation. In the former View they challenge our most devout Regard ; in the latter, they stand recommended to us upon the Foot of our own eternal Interest. It is so obvious an Inference from what has been said, that it scarce seems necessary to in.. fer the great Obligation we lie under, of, a diligent and pious Study of the Holy Scriptures : The Study of them in a spe. çulative Way is indeed more particularly the Duty of those who minister in Holy. Things, and relates to them as part of their Profession : They ought to employ : all the Compass and Force of human Learning, and human Learning is never..
To worthily and greatly employ'd, as in such a Manner, in adorning and defending, in enlighting and establifhing thofe Mysteries of Godliness, thofe Doctrines of Truth and Virtue which are therein contain’d: And all the Labour and Application we are Masters of, are but little enough to express the Sense we ought to have of the Value and Sacredness of those Things, which Holy Men inspired by God have written unto us of our common Redemption. But the Study of the Holy Scriptures in a practical Way, is Matter of absolute Duty, and takes in all Christians indifferently ; they declare unto all Men Salvation, and declare it in the Words of Force and Pleasantness : From those Funds of Wisdom, we may treasure up to ourselves infinite Portions of future Happiness, and treasure them up with vast Overflowings of present Comfort and Satisfaction: Whatever is there contain'd is written for Universal Benefit and Instruction : Notwithstanding the sublime Nature of the Doctrines, every the meanest Capacity may know them all to his
Soul's Health ; whatever he there reads he may, thro' God's Grace, fo profitably learn, and so acceptably perform, as to have his Fruit unto present Holiness, and the End everlasting Life, through Jesus Christ.
PHILIPPIANS iv. 4. Rejoice in the Lord always ; and again, I
T is a wonderful Advan
tage in our most Holy Refeeli l igion, that it fan&ifies the
whole Man, and gives a
Turn of Piety to the most natural and indifferent Circumstances of Life : If we do but keep God's Glory in View, and make that in general the End of our Adions; whether we eat or drink, or whatever we do, we are constantly en