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which has snatched your wife from your bosom, your children from your grasp, and which will most assuredly, ere long, bring you to the house appointed for all living, can you see nothing but a debt of nature, nothing but a coffin, nothing but welcome rest for your jaded limbs? Is there no need in your heart, no hunger there, no hidden pain, no secret sin from which you know you cannot deliver yourself? Then I tell you, that the first day of every week throughout Christendom is crowded with the mighty memory and grand assurance of One who can, who will, and who does deliver. It dawns, week after week, with a holy smile; it peals round about you that great thunder-psalm of the universe, “Glory unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood;" it pursues you with infinite compassion; it lays you under incalculable obligation. Oh, my brethren, is it to go on pleading with you year after year, and find you, at the end of a life spent in this Christian country, as men who never heard that the gates of death have been unsealed, as those who never knew that sin can be forgiven or condemnation annulled ?

(3) “ The first day of the week” is the great memorial of the giving of the Holy Spirit of God to man; of that day when the union between God and man was made more certain and real than it had ever been before, when on the day of Pentecost the great proofs were given to assembled thousands that the most stubborn prejudices could be overcome, the most obdurate hearts softened, the most awful sins pardoned, the most abandoned lives renewed. We are reminded not merely of what God did when He raised His Son from the dead, but of what He did when He sent Him once again to bless us, in turning away every one of us from our iniquities. It reminds us, consequently, that He is still here by His Spirit, constantly making men holy, and bringing sinners to Himself.

The Sunday is the memorial of the beginning of that great work in human nature by which it becomes like Christ, and is made one with God, the incarnation of the Holy Ghost. Whenever the Lord's-day dawns upon the Christian Church, God seems to say, • Prepare again, oh My people, for a renewal of My love, for a new vision of My glory, for a new baptism of My Spirit, for the tongue of fire, for the establishment of My covenant with man!' To-day God comes with ten thousand of His holy ones; to-day pride is melted into penitence, hypocrisy tears off his mask, the broken spirit finds mercy, the wicked man forsakes his way, and all God's people shout for joy. If that is the real meaning of the Sunday, have you, my brethren, no interest in these high memories, these unearthly hopes ? Are you so contented with the world that you can do without its Ruler and Lord ? so satisfied with the past that you crave no pardon ? so brave in the view of death that you want no deliverer ? so holy that you seek no sanctification ? These holy memories are not confined


to any narrow class of thought. They are the memories of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. He who despises them must risk a great deal,-must be dispensing with and putting from him his greatest chances for eternity; for, observe, it is equivalent to his saying, 'It matters very little whether I am a creature of God or not! whether Christ died for me or not! whether I quench, or sin against, the Holy Ghost or not !' It seems very much like going up to God and saying, 'O God, I can do without Thee! like looking into the sepulchre of Jesus, and saying, "I care not whether He rose from the dead or not!' and like some wild, melancholy, daring blasphemy against that spiritual power and love which can and does make all things new !

II. The Lord's-day is a day of noble and happy associations. It is rich in memories of the past great acts of God, but it comes down burdened with all the brightest and most beautiful thoughts of earth. Great revivals of human fellowship; great, stirring conflicts with evil; the great, the prosperous changes and revolutions of nations,—the deliverance of untold millions from the slavery of sin and the power of death, have all left their impress upon it. It is rich in the fellowship of the past: its holy and blessed reappearance, age after age, unites us with our brethren and sisters in distant generations, who have gloried, as we are trying to do, in the love of God. It is fertile in expedients for bringing into closer fellowship man with man. Is this world so happy, is your lot so bright, that you can afford to do without the help of your brethren? The Sunday summons you to united praise. Is your heart so jubilant with gratitude that you need no such assistance? The prayers of many bleeding hearts are lifted up in unison to God. Is your power to pray so great that you can afford to do without the stimulus of brotherhood ? It offers to you in the ordinance of preaching, by which God has chosen to save them that believe, the gospel of your salvation ; it prepares a message for you, “whether you will hear, or whether you will forbear.” My brethren, have you, who trifle with these associations, sounded the depths of that gospel ? Can you do this thing without wishing for more accurate knowledge, and for deeper feeling? There are millions of Christians who would say, that in the worship, the thoughts, the stimulus, the communion, the holy purpose, the thankfulness, the fellowship of this day, they find their highest enjoyment, their most thorough relaxation from the cares that eat out their heart, and the business which would often stifle the conscience and smother the soul. Verily, if happiness is the satisfaction of augmenting desires, this is the highest kind of bliss; for it is a satisfaction which never cloys, but only quickens the appetitewhich appeases,

but never sates the soul. Christians would tell you how they had come into the sanctuary of God bewildered and overdone,-their hearts crushed, their visions dashed, their hopes blighted, yet there they found a peace which passeth understanding: how as widows and as orphans they had come, and realized the joy that is unspeakable and full of glory: how they came blind, but returned seeing, for the light of God's countenance had penetrated their closed eyelids : how they came paralyzed, with withered hands and spirits of infirmity, and how they returned whole, strong, and vigorous : how they came with some devil of passion, of jealousy, of envy, or lust raging within them, and Christ has cast it out; or how they came full of gratitude, and there have felt that they joined hearts and voices with all the sons of God, and in the relief of uttered praise and heavenly sympathies had days of heaven

upon earth.

III. It is a day of holy anticipations. Memory is blessed, and such associations as these are full of charm; but what would men do without hope? All beings live upon hope; the child hopes for manhood, -the student for light,—the poor man for competence. Hope lights its torch on the funeral pile of our dead joys. We must ever in the abundance of mercy still stretch out our hands to God. This sacred day is the highest licence and holiest sanction of spiritual hope. It does, indeed, remind us of the sublime and central point in eternity, when the dread and holy Being that inhabits it came out of His place and rebuked darkness and chaos with His word, “Let there be light.” We link it on to that first sabbath of His love, when man, made in the image of God, became the High Priest of nature, and

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