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BY REV. HENRY WARE, JR., CAMBRIDGE, MASS.
THE DUTY OF IMPROVEMENT. A NEW YEAR'S SERMON.
PHILLIPIANS iii. 13, 14. I count not MYSELF TO HAVE APPREHEND ED; BUT THIS ONE THING I DO; FORGETTING THE THINGS WHICH ARE BEHIND, AND REACHING FORTH UNTO THOSE THINGS WHICH FORE, I PRESS
OF THE HIGH CALLING OF GOD IN CHRIST JESUS MY LORD.
TOWARD THE MARK
• The things which are behind, and the things which are before" For so it is with us here. We are in the midst of things ; not at rest, but passing onward; not at home, but travellers ; not stationary inhabitants, but pilgrims and strangers on earth. We are going on from stage to stage, leaving on the road one scene of business and pleasure after another, and arriving at new. What was ours, is ours no longer. What is ours, will be soon begone from us. Behind us are our childhood, our youth, and our early homes ; our first warm loves, our first bright hopes ; our early innocence and our early sins. Before us, are the cares and trials of an unknown destiny, and the duties of an uncertain probation ; bereavement, toil, sickness, age, death, judgment. Behind us, ignorance, weakness, imperfection. Before us, knowledge, virtue, perfection-or, it