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that he had this advantage by it, that the more he believed he should be put to death, the more he was engaged, by his deliverance, never to depend on any worldly trust, but only on GoD, who can rescue from the greatest extremity, even from the grave, and death itself. For we would not, brethren, says he, have you ignorant of our trouble, which came to us in Asia,-that we were pressed out of measure, above our strength, insomuch, that we despaired even of life; but we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in GoD, who raiseth the dead, who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver, and in whom we trust that he will deliver us.
And, indeed, a stronger argument cannot be brought for future trust, than the remembrance of past protection; for, what ground or reason can I have to distrust the kindness of that person, who has always been my friend and benefactor?
On whom can I better rely for assistance in the day of my distress, than on him who stood by me in all mine affliction, and, when I was at the brink of destruction, delivered me out of all my troubles? Would it not be highly ungrateful, and reflect either upon his goodness or his suffici、 ency, to distrust that Providence, which has always had a watchful eye over me? and who, according to his gracious promises, will never leave me, nor forsake me; and who in all my wants, in all my emergencies, has been abundantly more willing to give, than I to ask it?-If the former and the latter rain have hitherto descended upon the earth in due season, and seed time and harvest have never yet failed;-why should I fear famine in the land, or doubt, but that he who feedeth the raven, and providently scattereth for the sparrow, should likewise be my comfort? How unlikely is it that ever he should suffer his truth
to fail? This train of reflection, from the consideration of past mercies, is suitable and natural to all mankind; there being no one, who, by calling to mind God's kindnesses, which have been ever of old, but will see cause to apply the argument to himself.
And though, in looking back upon the events which have befallen us, we are apt to attribute too much to the arm of flesh, in recounting the more successful parts of them,-saying, My wisdom, my parts, and address, extricated me from this misfortune;-my foresight and penetration saved me from the second;-my courage, and the mightiness of my strength, carried me through a third: However we are accustomed to talk in this manner, yet, whoever coolly sits down and reflects upon the many accidents (though very improperly called so) which have befallen him in the course of his life;-when he considers the many amazing turns in his favor, sometimes in the most unpromising cases, and often brought about by the most unlikely causes;-when he remembers the particular providences which have gone along with him, the many personal deliverances which have preserved him,the unaccountable manner in which he has been enabled to get through difficulties, which on all sides beset him, at one time of his life,or the strength of mind he found himself endowed with, to encounter afflictions, which fell upon him at another period:-Where is the man, I say, who looks back, with the least religious sense, upon what has thus happened to him, who could not give you sufficient proof of GOD'S power, and his arm over him, and recount several cases, wherein the GoD of Jacob was his help, and the holy one of Israel his redeemer!
Hast thou ever laid upon the bed of languishing, or labored under a grievous distemper which threatened thy life? Call to mind thy sorrowful
and pensive spirit at that time; and add to it, who it was that had mercy on thee, that brought thee out of darkness and the shadow of death, and made all thy bed in thy sickness.
Hath the scantiness of thy condition hurried thee into great straits and difficulties, and brought thee almost to distraction? Consider who it was that spread thy table in that wilderness of thought -who it was made thy cup to overflow, -who added a friend of consolation to thee, and thereby spake peace to thy troubled mind. Hast thou over sustained any considerable damage in thy stock or trade? Bethink thyself who it was that gave thee a serene and contented mind under those losses. If thou hast recovered, consider who it was that repaired those breaches, when thy own skill and endeavors failed: Call to mind whose providence has blessed them since,-whose hand it was that has since set a hedge about thee, and made all that thou hast done to prosper. Hast thou ever been wounded in thy more tender part, through the loss of an obliging husband? or hast thou been torn away from the embraces of a dear and promising child, by its unexpected death?.
O consider, whether the GoD of truth did not approve himself a father to thee, when fatherless, -or a husband to thee, when a widow; and has either given thee a name better than that of sons and daughters, or even beyond thy hope,-made thy remaining tender branches to grow up, tall and beautiful, like the cedars of Libanus.
Strengthened by these considerations, suggesting the same, or like past deliverances, either to thyself, thy friends or acquaintance,-thou wilt learn this great lesson in the text,-in all thy exigencies and distresses-to trust God; and, whatever befals thee, in the many changes and chances of this mortal life, to speak comfort to thy
soul, and to say in the words of Habakkuk the prophet, with which I conclude,
Although the fig-tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; although the labor of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yeild no meat; although the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls; yet we will rejoice in the Lord, and joy in the GOD of our salvation.
To whom be all honor and glory, now and for ever. Amen.
EXODUS xxi. 14.
a man come presumptuously upon his neighbor, to slay him with guile ;-thou shalt take him from my altar, that he may die.
S the end and happy result of society, was,
tions which malice and avarice lay us open to,— so have the laws of GoD laid proportionable restraints against such violations as would defeat us of such a security. Of all other attacks which can be made against us, that of a mans's life,— which is his all,-being the greatest,the offence, in GoD's dispensation to the Jews, was denounced as the most heinous,-and represented as most unpardonable. At the hand of every man's brother will I require the life of man.. Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed.-Ye shall take no satisfaction for the life of a murderer;-he shall surely be put to death. So ye shall not pollute the land wherein ye are,-for blood defileth the land;———and the land cannot be cleansed of blood that is shed therein, but by the blood of him that shed it.For this reason, by the laws of all civilized nations, in all parts of the globe, it has been punished with death.
Some civilized and wise communities have so far incorporated these severe dispensations into their municipal laws, as to allow of no distinction betwixt murder and homicide.at least in the penalty;-leaving the intentions of the several parties concerned in it, to that Being who knows the heart, and will adjust the differences of the case hereafter. This falls, no doubt, heavy upon particulars ;-but it is urged for the benefit of the whole. It is not the business of a preacher to enter into an examination of the grounds