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providence, is a motive to fear and reverence him. He keeps the sea within its bounds amidst the most violent tempeíts; stops its course by the smallest sand, as easily as by walls of rock. When the tide has risen to such a height, it returns back, as if it obeyed the divine command. Who would not tremble at the presence of so great and awful a Being! Shall we not fear him who also gives us rain from heaven, and fruitful seasons? who favours us every year with feed-time and harvest? Let us meditate on his power, his goodness, and universal providence, that we may adore, reverence, and serve him, who is mighty in power, excellent in working, and who fills the whole earth with his goodness.
5. It would be happy for men if they would but consider what will be the end of things. It is of the last importance, both for this world and another, to consider before we undertake any thing, what the end will be. It would especially prevent many of the calamities, and most of the iniquities that prevail among men; but they please themselves with their own imaginations, follow the course of this world, and feldom or never think what they shall do in the end thereof. There will be an end; death is the end of all men, as to this world; after that, the judgment will settle their everlasting state ; and their end will be happy or miserable, as their lives have been good or bad. Oh thai men were wise, that they understood this, that they would con. fider their latter end.
CH A P. VI.
flee out of the midst of Jerusalem, and blow the trumpet in Tekoa, and set up a sign of fire, that
is, a beacon, in Beth-haccerem: for evil appeareth out 2 of the north, and great destruction. I have likened the daughter of Zion, Jerusalem, to a comely and deli3 cate (woman.] The shepherds with their flocks fhall
daughter Part of Jerusalem was in the tribe of Benjamin ; this was prophet's own tribe, and therefore he was greatly concerned about
come unto her; they shall pitch (their) tents against her round about; they shall feed every one in his place, in his pasture or quarter, till they quite devour it; the
Chaldeans shall encourage one another to attack Jerufalem, 4 saying, Prepare ye war against her; arise, and let us go
up at noon, in the heat of the day. Woe unto us! for the day goeth away, for the shadows of the evening are
stretched out; lamenting to lose a single day in the attack; 5 yea, they shall be so eager' as to add, Arifę, and let us go 6 by night, and let us destroy her palaces. For thus
hath the Lord of hosts faid, this is his commision to the Chaldeans, Hew ye down trees, and caft a mount against
Jerusalem : this [is] the city to be visited; the [is] 7 wholly oppression in the midst of her. As a fountain
castețh out her waters, so the cafteth out her wickedness, abundantly and constantly : violence and spoil is heard
in her ; before me continually [is] grief and wounds, the 8 wounds of those whom she hath oppressed. Be thou in
structed, Jerusalem, left my soul depart from thee; left I make thee desolate, a land not inhabited; take
warning before these threatenings and judgments are begun, 9
Thus faith the LORD of hosts, They shall throughly glean the remnant of Israel as a vine: turn back thine hand as a grape gatherer into the baskets, when he
espies more bunches ; so will God make an entire riddance. 10 To whom shall I speak, and give warning, that they
may hear? behold, their ear [is] uncircumcifed, and they cannot hearken; it is grown heavy, and indisposed to hear the truth: behold, the word of the Lord is unto
them a reproach; they have no delight in it; they hate u it, and charge the prophets with being Janderers. There
fore I am full of the fury of the LORD; I am weary with holding in; I must denounce his judgments: I will pour it out upon the children abroad, and upon the assembly of young men together, when at their clubs and merry meetings : for even the husband with the wife
shall be taken, the aged with him that is] full of 12 days. And their houses shall be turned unto others,
[with their] fields and wives together : for I will stretch
out my hand upon the inhabitants of the land, faith the 13 LORD. For from the least of them even unto the
greatest of them every one (is) given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest, all the dif
ferent orders of men that should have promoted religion, every 14 one dealeth falsely. They have healed also the hurt
(of the daughter) of my people slightly, saying, Peace, peace, when [there is) no peace ; instead of searching the
wound to the bottom, they have skinned it over, so that it 15 will break out again. Were they ashamed when they
had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore they shall fall among them that fall: at the time [that] I
visit them they shall be cast down, faith the Lord. 16 Thus faith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see,
and ask for the old paths, where [is] the good way, in which your pious fathers the patriarchs and prophets trod,
and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. . 17 But they said, We will not walk (therein.] Also I fet
watchmen over you to warn you of danger, and to threaten
my judgments, (saying,] Hearken to the sound of the 18 trumpet. But they said, We will not hearken. There
fore hear, ye neighbouring nations, and know, O congregation, especially ye governors and magistrates, what
[is] among them, what a height of wickedness they are 19 grown to. Hear, O earth ; behold, I will bring evil
upon this people, [even] the fruit of their thoughts, that is, their evil thoughts and the things they fear, because
they have not hearkened unto my words, nor to my 20. law, but rejected it. To what purpose cometh there to
incense from Sheba, and the sweet cane from a far country, on which you ground your pretensions to my fa- ..
vour? your burnt offerings [are] not acceptable, nor 21 your sacrifices sweet unto me. Therefore thus faith the
Lord, Behold, I will lay stumbling blocks before this people, and the father and the sons together shall fall upon them ; the neighbour and his friend shall perifh; their designs shall miscarry, they sball fall into the evils they thought to avoid; neither the father's wisdom, nor the fon's
22 streng!h, shall deliver them. Thus faith the Lorn, Be
hold, a people cometh from the north country, and a
great nation shall be raised from the sides of the earth. 23 They shall lay hold on bow and spear; they [are]
cruel, and have no mercy; their voice roareth like the
sea; and they ride upon horses, set in array as men for 24 war against thee, O daughter of Zion. We have heard
the fame thereof: our hands wax feeble: anguish hath
taken hold of us, (and) pain, as of a woman in travail; 25 the people are terribly alarmed at the report, and say, Go
not forth into the field, nor walk by the way : for the 26 sword of the enemy [and] fear [is] on every fide. O
daughter of my people, gird (thee] with fackcloth, and wallow thyself in afhes : make thee mourning,
(as for) an only son, most bitter lamentation: for the 27 spoiler shall suddenly come upon us.
I have set thee, O Jeremiah, (for,] or rather in, a tower [and] a fortress among my people, that thou mayest know and
try their way, to observe their conduct, to see my justice, 28 and warn them. They [are] all grievous revolters, walk
ing with slanders: [they are] brass and iron, the meanest
metals; they (are] all corrupters, impudent and obstinate, 29. are corrupt themselves, and corrupting one another. The
bellows are burned, the lead is consumed of the fire;
the founder melteth in vain : for the wicked are not 30 plucked away.' Reprobate silver shall [men] call them,
that is, silver mixed with dross, that will not pass current, because the Lord hath rejected them; they shall be rejected of God and man, and left to be confumed in the furnace.
1. 1 E may infer from hence how resolute we should
be in our spiritual warfare. The Chaldeans were eager to go up to the attack; neither the heat of the
day, Here is an allufion to the method of refining silver ; lead was mixed with it for that purpose; the bellows were burned by being long near the fire so long God had used methods to reform them; but their wickedness was not removed, nor were they the better for the means of reformation.
day, nor the coldness of the night discouraged them. Let the courage and patience of military men rouse us to fight the good fight of faith. It is a glorious warfare in which we are engaged against spiritual enemies. The commission and command are from God; we have the promise of his strength, if we go on vigorously and faint not. Let Christ's aged soldiers not be disheartened, but be so much the more diligent, as the day goeth away, and the shadows of the evening are lengthened, for a glorious reward will be given: let us therefore be faithful unto death, and God will give us a crown of life.
2. We fee what is necessary to be done, if we desire the continuance of God's favour, v. 8. We must attend to religious instructions, by whom and in what way soever delivered ; consider their importance, and obey them ; else God's foul will depart from us; we shall lose his favour, and every thing honourable and comfortable; and then we shall become desolate indeed. Let us therefore hear in.. struction, and be wise, before it is too late.
3. We have here a lesson of important instruction for ministers. They must faithfully deliver even those warnings and threatenings of scripture, which are most terrifying and disagreeable to men ; and which is not very pleasant to themselves to deliver, any farther than as they are needful and useful. They must beware, left, as in v. 14, they encourage men in their fins, and suffer them to perish thro' self-deceit. Let their hearers also beware left they account the word of the Lord a reproach, and are angry with a reproof that reaches their cases and consciences. Rather let them be thankful for it, and esteem the faithful reprover in love.
- 4. How desirable is it for all, especially young persons, to seek after and walk in the good way, the old path; like travellers that would not willingly mistake their road, but want and ask direction. Let them enquire in what way thofe have walked, whose names are recorded with honour in fcripture; alk of their parents, their ministers, their bible, and practical books, what is the good way, and never turn afide from it. There, and there only, will be found