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Since Christ was laid in his grave, and his people reap such privileges by it, as ever you expect rest or comfort in your graves, see that you get union with Christ now.

It was an ancient custom of the Jews, to put rich treasures into the graves with their friends, as well as to bestow much upon their sepulchres. It is said, Hircanus opened David's sepulchre, and took out of it three thousand talents of gold and silver. And to this sense many interpret that act of the Chaldeans, Jer. viii. 1. "At that time, saith the Lord, they shall bring out the bones of the kings of Judah, and the bones of his princes, &c. And they shall spread them before the sun and moon," &c. This is rather conceived to be an act of covetousness than cruelty: they shall ransack their graves for the treasure that is hid there among their bones. Is it possible the case so stands with many of you, that you have no great matter to bestow upon your funerals, nor are they like to be splendid; no stately monuments; no hidden treasure; but if Christ be yours, you carry that with you to your graves, which is better than all the gold and silver in the world. What would you be the better, if your coffin were made of beaten gold, or your grave-stone set thick with glittering diamonds? But if you die in the Lord, i. e. interested in and united to the Lord, you shall carry six grounds of comfort with you to your graves, the least of which is not to be purchased with the wealth of both the Indies.

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First, The first ground of comfort which a believer carries with him to the grave, is, that the covenant of God holds firmly with very dust, all the days of its appointed time in the grave. So much Christ tells us, Matt. xxii, 31, 32. "I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob: God is not the God of the dead, but of the living; q.d. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are naturally dead; but inasmuch as God, long after their deaths, proclaimed himself their God still, therefore they are all alive, fœderally alive to God: they live, i. e. their covenant-relation lives still," Whether we live, or whether we die, (saith the apostle) we are the Lord's;" Rom. xiv. 7-9. Now, what an encouragement is here! I am as much the Lord's in the state of the dead, as I was

in the state of the living: death puts an end to all other relations and bonds, but the bond of the covenant rots not in the grave: that dust is still the Lord's.

Secondly, As God's covenant with our very bodies is indissolu ble, so God's love to our very dust is inseparable. "I am the God of Abraham." God looks down from heaven into the graves of his saints with delight, and looks on that pile of dust with complacency, which those that once loved it cannot behold without loathing. The apostle is express, Rom. viii. 33. that death separates not the believer from the love of God. As at first it was not our natural comeliness or beauty that drew or engaged his love to us; so neither will he cease to love us, when that beauty is gone, and we become objects of loathing to all flesh. When a husband cannot endure to see a wife, or a wife her husband, but saith of them that were once dear and pleasant, as Abraham of his beloved Sarah, "Bury my dead out of my sight;" yet then the Lord delights in it as much as ever. The goldsmith does not value the dust of his gold, as God values the dust of his saints; for all these precious particles are united to Christ.

Thirdly, As God's love will be with you in the grave, so God's providence shall take order about your graves, when they shall be digged for you. And be sure he will not dig your graves till you are fit to be put into them: he will bring you thither in the best time; Job v.26. "Thou shalt come to thy grave as a shock of corn in its season:" you shall be ripe and ready before God house you there. It is said of David, that" after he had served his generation by the will of God, he fell asleep ;" Acts xiii. 36. O what a holy and wise will is that will of God, that so orders our death! And how equal is it, that our will should be concluded by it!

Fourthly, If you be in Christ, as God's covenant holds with you in the grave, his love is inseparable from your dust, his providence shall give order when it shall be digged for you, so, in the next place, his pardons have loosed all the bonds of guilt from you, be fore you lie down in the grave; so that you shall not die in your sins. Ah, friends, what a comfort is this! that you are the Lord's free-men in the grave! Sin is a bad bed-fellow, and a worse grave»

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fellow. It is a grievous threatening, John viii. 24. “Ye shall die in your sins." Better be cast alive into a pit among dragons and serpents, than dead in your graves among your sins. O what a terrible word is that, Job xx. 11. "His bones are full of the sins of his youth, which shall lie down with him in the dust!" But from the company of sin, in the grave, all the saints are delivered. God's full, free, and final pardons have shut guilt out of your graves.

Fifthly, Whenever you come to your graves, you shall find the enmity of the grave slain by Christ: it is no enemy; nay, you will find it friendly, a privileged place to you: it will be as sweet to you that are in Christ, as a soft bed in a still quiet chamber to one that is weary and sleepy. Therefore it is said, 1 Cor. iii. 21, 22. "Death is yours;" yours as a privilege-your friend; there you shall find sweet rest in Jesus; be hurried, pained, troubled no

more.

Sixthly, If in Christ, know this for your comfort, that your own Lord Jesus Christ keeps the keys of all the chambers of death; and as he unlocks the door of death, when he lets you in, so he will open it again for you when you awake, to let you out; and from the time when he opens to let you in, till the time he opens to let you out, he himself wakes and watches by you while you sleep there. "I (saith he) have the keys of death," Rev. i, 18. O then, as you expect peace or rest in the chambers of death, get union with Christ. A grave with Christ is a comfortable place.

Flavel.

THE RESURRECTION.

(26th Link.)

We have now put the body of "Christian" to bed, where he must sleep for "a time." But for how long a time? "The very angels in heaven know not;"-but, certainly, not for ever. Though the flesh and bones may return to earth, and the earth to vegetation, the vegetation to food for animals, and the animals food for man; and though we may eat each other forty times over; yet the body

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in the state of the living: death puts an end to all other relations
and bonds, but the bond of the covenant rots not in the
dust is still the Lord's.

grave:

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Secondly, As God's covenant with our very bodies is indissoluble, so God's love to our very dust is inseparable. "I am the God of Abraham." God looks down from heaven into the graves saints with delight, and looks on that pile of dust with complacency, which those that once loved it cannot behold without loathing. The apostle is express, Rom. viii. 33. that death separates not the believer from the love of God. As at first it was not our natural comeliness or beauty that drew or engaged his love to us; so neiand we ther will he cease to love us, when that beauty is gone, become objects of loathing to all flesh. When a husband cannot endure to see a wife, or a wife her husband, but saith of them that were once dear and pleasant, as Abraham of his beloved Sarah, "Bury my dead out of my sight;" yet then the Lord delights in it as much as ever. The goldsmith does not value the dust of his gold, as God values the dust of his saints; for all these precious particles are united to Christ.

Thirdly, As God's love will be with you in the grave, so God's providence shall take order about your graves, when they shall be digged for you. And be sure he will not dig your graves till you are fit to be put into them: he will bring you thither in the best time; Job v.26. “Thou shalt come to thy grave as a shock of corn in its season:" you shall be ripe and ready before God house you there. It is said of David, that" after he had served his generation by the will of God, he fell asleep ;" Acts xiii. 36. O what a holy and wise will is that will of God, that so orders our death! And how equal is it, that our will should be concluded by it!

Fourthly, If you be in Christ, as God's covenant holds with you in the grave, his love is inseparable from your dust, his providence shall give order when it shall be digged for you, so, in the next place, his pardons have loosed all the bonds of guilt from you, be fore you lie down in the grave; so that you shall not die in your sins. Ah, friends, what a comfort is this! that you are the Lord's free-men in the grave! Sin is a bad bed-fellow, and a worse grave

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fellow. It is a grievous threatening, John viii. 24. "Ye shall die in your sins." Better be cast alive into a pit among dragons and serpents, than dead in your graves among your sins. O what a terrible word is that, Job xx. 11. "His bones are full of the sins of his youth, which shall lie down with him in the dust!" But from the company of sin, in the grave, all the saints are delivered. God's full, free, and final pardons have shut guilt out of your graves.

Fifthly, Whenever you come to your graves, you shall find the enmity of the grave slain by Christ: it is no enemy; nay, you will find it friendly, a privileged place to you: it will be as sweet to you that are in Christ, as a soft bed in a still quiet chamber to one that is weary and sleepy. Therefore it is said, 1 Cor. iii. 21, 22. “Death is yours;" yours as a privilege-your friend; there you shall find sweet rest in Jesus; be hurried, pained, troubled no

more.

Sixthly, If in Christ, know this for your comfort, that your own Lord Jesus Christ keeps the keys of all the chambers of death; and as he unlocks the door of death, when he lets you in, so he will open it again for you when you awake, to let you out; and from the time when he opens to let you in, till the time he opens to let you out, he himself wakes and watches by you while you sleep there. "I (saith he) have the keys of death," Rev. i. 18. O then, as you expect peace or rest in the chambers of death, get union with Christ. A grave with Christ is a comfortable place.

Flavel.

THE RESURRECTION.

(26th Link.)

We have now put the body of "Christian" to bed, where he must sleep for "a time." But for how long a time? "The very angels in heaven know not;"-but, certainly, not for ever. Though the flesh and bones may return to earth, and the earth to vegetation, the vegetation to food for animals, and the animals food for man; and though we may eat each other forty times over; yet the body

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