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this, the doctrine (with its inferences) of Christ's intercession ; and the necessities and aspirations of man are satisfied. It is no just objection, to affirm, that “there is much more which we might “ have, and have not :” the question is, “ What “ do we want more e?"
Let it be noticed, again, how every thing thus advances in perfect “order.” Let it be observed, how we are thus able to perceive ourselves .commanded to watch and pray; to seek out of the Matth. XXV. book of the Lord, and read; to take the whole 41.
2. 13. xxvi. armour of the Spirit ; not arbitrarily, and as by 16.*
Eph. vi. 11, a task-master ;' but as by a friend, whom we is. now distinctly feel to be a friend; whose counsels we can now ourselves discover to be justi- Cf. Ps. 1. 4. fied.
throughout. And, if we be grateful, I think we shall not fail to notice, and to reverence with a corresponding and proportionate affection, that consistency of love and tenderness, with which our Church
e I have assumed, as a point not to be disputed, that the individual wants of man, proper to be considered in a question of the present nature, are those of the spirit only, and not the necessities of the body. It must be admitted, further, that the foregoing estimate has been made only from contemplation of the remedies provided for such. But surely, the Creator knows best the complete frame of his own creature, and has provided for him accordingly! And it has been the whole purpose of these Lectures to exemplify this ; to show, how he has condescended, in the volume of holy Writ, to reveal to man what his wants are; to discover him, as he is, unto himself, in order to bring him to happiness.
(still following, in desire, the model of His progressive care, under whose name she claims au
thority) invites us to come for rest and refreshSee the ment of our souls to the Lord's holy table, as, to which this a special means of grace. I will not here speak treated by of the holy Sacrament, as that most necessary Hooker, Eccles. Po. means, which it surely is, of mere outward unity; lity: book v. but looking to our express object, to the " wants $.67.
" and the desires only of an individual heart," I say, Let us value the Eucharist, honestly, by that test. Does it suit our necessity and our desire, or does it not; that, as pilgrims through a
world like this, we may find such access to a livCf. John iv. ing well, from whence our spirits may be filled Ps: lxxxiv. with consolation: What a bond, then, of some
thing more than outward unity;—of real and essential fellowship; where many pilgrims meet together; and all, to eat the same spiritual meat,
and drink the same spiritual drink; even of the 1 Cor. x. 3, same spiritual Rock, that still follows us, and
which Rock is Christ! What if there be intruders here, again, as there were sensualists and sługgards before ? I cannot trace from that the insufficiency of the ordinance, as a channel of personal blessing unto sanctification !
A question remains; “Is all this reasonable ?" To which the fair answer turns upon a single and very simple point; viz. whether the condition thus described, and the positive application to it of the remedies thus maintained to be
at once suitable and adequate, is conformable, or contradictory, to rational experience.
Now, I admit that the solution of this problem must, in some degree, be partial': for it must come, in the first instance, from a believer ; and nest, from the believer of a particular creed. But such a one (as we have seen, and know) is Lect. iv. p. no less a subject of “experience,” than his sceptical or dissentient fellow-creature. If, therefore, it but agree with his sense of man, and mán's condition ; if it but speak knowledge, and hope, and consolation to him; if he be sure, that God is good, and that they who wilfully reject the Gospel will out of their own mouths be condemned ; (since they refuse an interpretation of things, and a provision, which might satisfy any man ;) if, moreover, he himself be evidently no madman, no enthusiast, no hypocrite; if, by virtue of this hope within him, he be found discreet and humble, prudent and temperate, chaste and pious, patient and charitable ; if he be one, who understands all other knowledge as well as they do, who beljeve not; if he be an upright ruler or a tender father, a dutiful son or an affectionate husband, a faithful servant or an equitable master ;-then I contend that all these things, of which we have been speaking, are " reasonable;" for they are found accepted by the experience of a person- of whom who will deny that he must be a reasonable man? :
Contrary to man's unassisted apprehension such estimate of things undoubtedly is ; “pecu“ liar” it undoubtedly is. We would not deny or conceal that. Nay, it is the very security of the whole case. If it were not so, the Gospel would neither materially differ from, nor be superior to other systems. « Holy Scripture' would not meet human exigencies better than they do. It would not satisfy all the thoughts and wants of an “individual,” as now we think
it does. We that are called to the faith and rule 1 Pet. ii. 9. of it should not deserve to be entitled a peculiar
people. It is the “peculiarity” joined to the “ reality ;" the adaptation of “mysteries” to our familiar “senses ;" the union of “faith" with “ reason;" which make up, together, (under the view that has been now taken,) the proof of its DIVINE AUTHORITY.
In challenging attention, however, to the “rule “ and law of life" proposed to us in holy Scripture, as a law " sufficient for the wants and wishes “ of every individual person called unto obedi“ence to it;" I am aware, that this continuous view of personal religion, by itself, does not fulfil the variety of such a challenge, in all its practical forms. There are other views of this great subject, which must be included, of a more detached and partial character. It must present itself to our conviction, as the true channel of security-not only when we thus trace it from
its fountain through its whole course; but also, in whatever point of its continuous progress the uneasy spirit, weary of inferior hopes, may approach to the current of the river of life, and demand its passage over. We must be prepared to give an answer to others, as well as to our. selves; for their reproof and correction; for the strengthening of them that stand, and the raising up of them that fall; for the instruction in righteousness of all. If the Gospel be the great asylum open to all, it must be found open to all conditions, and at all seasons.
And so we think it is. It might be difficult to point out a diversity; whether of moral habit, or natural disposition ; whether of accidental state, or artificial station; whether of advancement, or default in holiness ; for which a provision may not be discovered (by a serious and sincere inquirer) in holy Writ. But I forbear all special examinations of this sort; all reference, likewise, to the comprehensive nature of the Gospel morality ; because the great personal doctrines of that revelation added and applied to the facts, which the whole volume of the Bible displays of human nature, seem to involve a general understanding, which may best solve all particulars for itself.
I forbear also to dwell upon another very striking feature, which might be depicted as of very considerable force; the freedom of the Gos