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name; and say, 'whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire in comparison of thee; in thy favour is lite, and thy loving kindness is better than life,' and that which I esteem above all things on the face of the earth. O friends, be you thankful to God for the manifestation of his love and mercy to you!

Take heed of an ungrateful spirit. Trust in the Lord and he will deliver you, and wound the hairy scalp of your enemies. Many have outlived their youthful greenness, and that tenderness they had when God first awakened them to consider their ways, and to seek after him with their whole heart. 'I remember, saith the Lord by Jeremiah, the kindness of thy youth, and the day of thy espousals.' God will remember you, if you remember his loving kindness, and have it ever before your eyes, and walk in his truth. When there was nothing but darkness in Egypt, there was light in Goshen,we (saith the Apostle) were sometimes darkness, but now we are light in the Lord : Let us walk as children of the light, and hate the works of darkness.

We that are made living witnesses of the power, and wisdom, and goodness of God, let us sink down into self abasement, and humility, and we shall feel the living openings of the spirit of truth in our own hearts, and receive with meekness that ingrafted word, in which is light and life, that is able to save our souls; and submit to the authority of God therein ; and the word of Christ may dwell richly in us, and become the power of God to our salvation.

Now the God of peace which brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus Christ, the great shepherd of bis sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you perfect in every good work, to do his will; working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, to whom be glory, praise, and thanksgiving, who alone is worthy, who is God over all, blessed for ever and ever.' Amen.

84

THE
GREAT DESIGN

OF
CHRISTIANITY.

A Sermon preached at the Quakers' Meeting- Houses in Wheelers-Street, London, Jan. 27, 1694.

BY WILLIAM PENN.

. Ka THE great end for which God bath in all ages and generations visited the sons and daughters of men, hath been to bring them home to himself; to make man and woman sensible of that duty which they owe to God, to their neighbors and to themselves. And in order to effect this, great bath been God's love, and manifold have been bis mercies : he bath not taken man at his word, neither would he be put off at once, twice, or thrice, but repeated have been the visitations of God, and the calls of God in every age and generation of the world, according to the various administrations thereof; yea, the Lord hath waited to be good and gracious to mankind from the beginning. * And now, my Friends, we have not only the testi. mony of the holy records of the scriptures of truth, but we have our own experience to exalt God's love by: we in our day, we mankind in our age and generation; we can say that God is good, we can say that God is a long suffering God, and that God is a God of patience, and that he is a God of mercy, . and that he hath waited long to be gracious to us,

or we had been cut off long ago, and taken out of the land of the living. I would have all those that have not laid hold of the long-suffering of God, but have made light of it, not to do so any longer, but that the long-suffering of God might lead them to repentance, and bring salvation to them; that they would lay hold of the time and blessed opportunities which God giveth them, and bearken to the voic of the Charmer, and give ear to the voice of God, and seek the Lord while he may be found, and call upor him while he is near to bear them, while he is near to help them, while he is near to save them. This is the experience we bave had, the Lord hath visited us and touched us, and made us sensible of his love and kindness to us, in bis gathering of us; and that he hath made us nigh, that were afar off ; and that those that are not convinced, may be made sensible of their sin ; and those that are convinced, may be converted; and those that are converted, may persevere to the end, and receive the end of their faith, the salvation of their souls, is our travail.

Jeet all that are really convinced of the evil of their ways and doings, of their wantonness, worldliness, malice and bitterness, strife and envyings and animosities, and those things that the light of Christ in their own consciences condemn them for; let all that are in such a state of conviction turn from that evil they are convinced of.

But here is the sin, and misery, and ruin of many men and women, they flatter themselves into hell, with their false hopes of heaven : They hope to live eternally happy by the death of Christ, and yet they will not leave one sin for the love of Christ; so that sin and death reign over them. They that will not mortify sin, and die to sin here, must die for their sins bereaster. It is only unpardoned sin that will sink men into perdition. They that have a mournful sense of sin, and a true contrition for it, they will humble themselves under the mighty hand of God,

B

who will exalt them in due time. They breathe forth holy desires, and lift up their hearts to God, and say, 'Lord, I am as clay in the hands of the potter, O fashion and shape me, that I inay be an honouiable vessel in thy house, that I may be fit to glorify thee, and shew forth thy praise :' * Blessed are they that dwell in thy bouse, for they will be still praising thee;' they offer praise and glorify thee here for a short time, and thou wilt glorify them to eternity. God called Abraham, the father of the faithful, out of his own land, a land of idolatry; he ribeyed the voice of God, went into a strange country and followed the Lord, not knowing whither he went: So God calls the sons and daughters of men out of their sin and transgression, that they may come to a land that flows with milk and honey; that after all their wearisome labours and travels, tbrough the wilderness of this world, they might come to an everlasting rest, and obtain salvation for their immortal souls. They that come to be convinced of the evil of their ways, and turn from them, that bitterly bewail their sins, and lament and mourn for their transgressions, and turn to the Lord with all their hearts; it may be said concerning such, these have learned that divine arithmetic, of numbering their days, and applying their hearts to true wisdom : These are the persons that take heed to their ways, and turn their feet to God's testimonies. They take more care, and are more concerned for their souls, tban for all the perishing things of this world. Such an one will say, my soul is more worth, than ten thousand worlds: “What will it profit me to gain the whole world, and lose mine own soul? Or what shall I give in exchange for my soul?' What is this world but an empty bub. blé, a shadow that flies away? All its glittering profits, and charming pleasures, and delusory honours, that appear great to a carnal eye, how quickly do they vanish and disappear, and afford no true sati: fartion to them that admire them, and pursue after them?

-Vanity of vanities (saith the wisest of men). Vanity of vanities, all is vanity, and vexation of spirit!'. But worldly minded men, that set their hearts upon this world, they are not for these holy reflections; but the truly convinced men and women, that are touched with a deep sense of their misery, and of their own erring and straying, and wandering from God's holy, ways, that fear to sin and provoke the Lord, and stir up the indignation of the Almighty, they love to reflect upon themselves, and to consider their ways, and turn to the Lord, and to set their faces Zionward: I say to all such persons, travel on, the Lord hath been gracious to you.

O improve your precious time! You know not how few days you have yet remaining to run your great race in. To day, while it is called to day, if you will bear the voice of God, barden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness. Let none of you be careless and slack, but let every one of you consider your latter end, consider how far you bave done the work of God and whether you have been working out your own salvation, with fear and trembling, and give all diligence to make your calling and election sure; that when you come to lay down your heads, it may be as : conquerors that have fought the good fight, and overcome the enemy of your souls.

O Friends, we have a great and subtle enemy: If we be secure, and keep not our watch, he will surprise us and overcome us; but if we resist him, and fight against him, we shall overcome him, through Christ that hath loved us. 'O wretched man that I am, (saith the Apostle) who shall deliver me? I thank God, through Jesus Christ our Lord ;' He will deliver me from this great Goliab, that hath led me captive at his will. It is Christ that stands at the door of my heart and knocks, and bids me open to him that will be my deliverer : It is he of wbomn, David was a type, he will deliver me, and enable me to

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