Sivut kuvina

low-Christians ? Is it necessary to teach you again the elements of religion? or are you so advanced in your knowledge, that you can teach others ? At all events, your duty is plain, " to go on to perfection,” to make greater attainments in future, whatever you may have made in the past. To do this, you have every inducement which can have weight upon a virtuous mind. Neglect it not, then, on any account; plead no excuse, for none can be admitted. Establish yourselves in the knowledge of the doctrinal and practical truths of the Gospel. View them in their connexion so far as you can, and seek for ability to do this better. You are exposed to trials and temptations. How can you bear the one, and resist the other, without following on to know the Lord? You may meet with enemies of your faith. How will you answer them aught, if your knowledge be only superficial ?

Especially, Christian parents, would I press on you the duty which the apostle enforces, not merely for your own sakes, but for the sake of your children, that you may train them up in the way in which they should go. Their souls, no doubt, are pre

your at

cious in your eyes. You ought, therefore, to spare no pains to teach them the truth. Do you instruct them at home, as you

have promised at their baptism? Do you embrace

every opportunity of explaining truth to them? Do you set them such examples as correspond with your instructions? Do you accompany your exertions with prayer, fervent and importunate prayer to God, that he would bless


exertions for their good ? As they grow up,


continue tention to them, that they may grow in the knowledge of divine truth?

Here, I apprehend, not a few are deficient. They consider their work done, when the elementary principles of Christianity are committed to memory from a catechism. This, as you have heard, is a sad mistake; and, if possible, rectify it before it be too late, I entreat you. Strive to teach them more of religion, its evidences, its doctrines and precepts, that they may not be the prey of unbelievers, or false teachers. If you value the truth yourselves, you cannot but desire that they should value it likewise. How can they value it aright, if they know it not aright? You are their natural


ceptors; teach them when they are lying down, and rising up; when they are walking by the way, or sitting in the house.

Fathers and Mothers here present, look beyond these scenes, to those which are future. Is it your fond hope and fervent prayer, that you may, on the judgment-day, present yourselves, with your offspring, saying, “ Here are we, and the children thou hast

given us ?” In this life, now, this day, in good earnest, set about the great work of endeavouring to make them wise unto salvatian. Who knows but God will bless your labours ?

Ye young people, to you also I recommend the duty of acquiring a deep acquaintance with divine truth. What you have already learned, is not sufficient. Advance further. Improve upon

the rudiments you have acquired. Seek to have that knowledge which you possess sanctified. Without this, it will not be eternal life to you. You will soon act your part on the theatre of the world. Are you well armed with integrity ? are your minds stored with divine knowledge, that you may resist temptations, and persevere in duty ? If not, you are in a pe

rilous condition. You are embarking on a stormy ocean, without a pilot or a chart to guide you. If your parents seek to instruct you, listen to them ; if not, ask them to do so. Wisdom, even this knowledge of which we speak, is the principal thing. It will qualify you for being useful to others, and glorifying God. You will soon be called hence to the eternal world. At the eventful moment of death, what but the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ will support or comfort you?

Ye careless, thoughtless young people, look forward to the future. Oh, beware of ignorance of divine truth! It has ruined thousands before you; it will ruin you if you be not enlightened in the knowledge of the truth, before you leave this world. Your time of life is the proper one for every species of improvement. Religious improvement, a sanctified use of your privileges, will afford you the highest pleasure in time, besides preparing you for eternity. Seek, then, after it with diligence and perseve

Count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus your

Lord. Be not diverted in this pursuit


by your pleasures; be not delayed by your employments. Though young now, you soon will be old. Ere long you will be ripe for the grave. What you ought to do, therefore, now do, for in the grave there is no repentance nor knowledge. Study the word of God with care and constancy.

Examine the grounds and evidences of your religion. Be confirmed and established in the faith, whilst young; for, if you neglect it now, you have reason to fear that


persevere in the neglect through life. In this accepted time seek the Lord. Seek him while he


be found, and follow on to know him more fully and perfectly.

On you all, my hearers, the duty of knowing the truth, and following on to know more of it, is binding. We exhort you to attend to it with promptness and fidelity, since it is the Lord's will.

Let us, my Reverend Brethren, each in our place strive to promote the interests of our people, in promoting the religious knowledge of old and young.

Let us endeavour to feed them with understanding and wisdom, that they may live in the fear of God. The young, especially, demand our care.



« EdellinenJatka »