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6. there is not a second; yea, he hath nei" ther child nor brother : yet there is no
end of all his labour,” &c. But whatever became of his fruits, we know that his folly proved a lasting estate, for it continues to be the inheritance of many at this day. I believe there are numbers among ourselves, whose minds are continually on the rack, fe that they cannot sleep, with laying schemes about the merest trifles in the world. In this age of gaiety and frivolous ostentation, I make no doubt, that the superfluities of dress, furniture, equipage,
equipage, and the like, employ the thoughts of the rich (or of people of fashion, whether they be rich or not) as anxiously, as the clothing that is necessary to cover their nakedness employs the thoughts of the poor and destitute. It is the care of some to overtop their neighbours : it is the care of others to over-reach at gaming; and indeed the mind of á gamester must be in perpetual suspense and agitation. Surely I need not tell
that it would be impious to cast such cares upon God. We are not at liberty to choose af random whatsoever is agreeable to fancy or
appetite; and, when our paffions are inflamed, and our hearts overcharged with disquieting cares, attempt to roll these over upon
God. We must first examine the object of our desire, whether it be good in itfelf, and fit for us; whether it be consistent with and fubfervient to our spiritual intereft: and if, opon inquiry, it shall appear that these qualifications are wanting, we must neither cast the care of it upon od, nor keep it to ourselves, but throw it away altogether; praying, that our folly may be forgiven, our diseased affections healed, and led forth to other objects more worthy of our pursuit. This being laid down, then, 25 a fundamental principle, that the object of our defire must be lawful and good, the practice of the duty which my text recommends, may be considered as including the following particulars.
1A, A stedfast persuasion, that all events are ordered and directed by God; that we and all our interests are continually in his hand; and that nothing can befall us without his appointment or permission. This was the foundation of David's confidence, when
he faid, “ Into thine hands I commit my
spirit : Thou hast redeemed me, O Lord 66 God of truth. I have heard the flander
many; fear was on every fide; while " they took counsel together against me,
they devised to take away my life. But I trusted in thee, O Lord : I said, Thou
art my God, my times are in thy hand.” Herein lies the difference betwixt the judge ment of fanctified believers and that of worldly men: The laft, confining their views to the objects of fense, place their whole dependence upon weak and mu. table creatures like themselves. They court the smiles, and tremble. at the frowns, of those who are raised a little above them
; and have no higher aim, than to recom. mend themselves to the favour and protection, of such persons as are most likely to gratify their ambition or covetousness: Whereas the believer, knowing that God is supreme, and that the highest creatures are only instruments which he employs at his pleasure, keeps his eye, continually fixed upon him, and hath no other concern than ço be found walking in those ways which he
hath appointed; being fully assured, that all events, of whatever kind, are ordered by his reconciled Father in Christ Jesus, and fhall infallibly work together for his spiriqual improvement in this state of discipline, and issue in his complete and everlasting felicity.
2dly, To cast our care upon God, is to make his will the guide and measure of ours. We may desire, we may ask, what appears to us good in its own nature, and conducive either to our comfort or usefulness in a prefent world; we may lawfully wish to be delivered from trouble, to enjoy health of body, composure and cheerfulness of mind, the pleasures of virtuous friendship, and a competent portion of the good things of this life: but still we must defire and ask these
: blessings with due fubmiffion to the will of God, leaving it entirely to his unerring wifdom to give or to with-hold them, as seemeth good unto himself. We have a lovely example of this temper in the behaviour of David
upon a very trying occasion. When the unexpected rebellion of his unnatural fon Abfalom, which threatened him with
the immediate lofs, not of his crown only, but also of his life, obliged him to leave Jerusalem in haste; we are told, that among the few that accompanied him in his flight toward the wilderness, was Zadock the Priest, and with him all the Levites, bearing the ark of the covenant of God. In this time of great distress, when his situation was so affecting, that, as we read, 2 Sam.
« all the country wept with a loud “. voice," while they beheld him passing over the brook Kidron, the facred historian informs us, verse 25, 26. that the king addressed Zadock in the following words : “ Carry back the ark of God into the city : e if I shall find favour in the eyes of the “ Lord, he will bring me again, and show
me both it and his habitation. But if he “ thus say, I have no delight in thee : be
hold, here am I, let him do to me as “ feemeth good unto him.”---What shall be the issue of this formidable conspiracy I know not; but I caft my care, my all, upon my God: in the mean time, let the ark of the covenant be carried back to its plàce. The presence of the God of Israel is not con