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for the study of which this Honourable Society is set apart. No pursuits appear to be more congenial to each other than those of religion and jurisprudence. The laws of our own country in particular, are founded on the basis of the Christian religion; its doctrines and duties being recognised in all our courts of justice, and interwoven with every part of our legislative code. The practitioner in this profession has, moreover, opportunities which the members of no other profession, perhaps, can enjoy to an equal extent, of observing the human heart in all its varieties; of tracing its windings and obliquities; and of comparing it with the standard of rectitude and truth. When a deep-rooted principle of religion comes in aid of these opportunities, the advantage must be incalculably great, and its influence cannot but be extended far and wide.

An admirable instance of this is upon record, in the life of a very distinguished luminary of the law, the pride and ornament of this society; of whom one of his biographers, most intimately acquainted with him, has said, "He that considers the active part of his life, and with what unwearied

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P Sir Matthew Hale.

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diligence and application of mind, he despatched all men's business which came "under his care, will wonder how he could "find any time for contemplation: he that "considers again the various studies he passed "through, and the many collections and ob"servations he hath made, may as justly "wonder how he could find any time for "action."-Concerning the value of religion in its influence upon men's secular pursuits and occupations, this great man thus forcibly expresses his sentiments.-"Take a man that "is employed as a statesman or politician, though he have much wisdom and prudence, it commonly degenerates into craft, and cunning, and pitiful shuffling, without the fear "of God: but mingle the fear of Almighty “God with that kind of wisdom, it renders "it noble, and generous, and stayed, and

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honest, and stable. Again, take a man that " is much acquainted with the subtiler kind of learning, as philosophy for instance, without "the fear of God upon his heart, it will carry "him over to pride, arrogance, self-conceit, curiosity, presumption: but mingle it with "the fear of God, it will ennoble that know

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ledge, carry it up to the honour and glory

"of that God that is the Author of nature, to "the admiration of His power, wisdom, and

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goodness: it will keep him humble, modest, sober, and yet rather with an advance than "detriment to his knowledge. Take a man “industrious in his calling, without the fear "of God with it, he becomes a drudge to worldly ends, vexed when disappointed, overjoyed in success: mingle but the fear "of God, it will not abate his industry, but "sweeten it: if he prosper, he is thankful to "God that gives him power to get wealth; if "he miscarry, he is patient under the will "and dispensation of the God he fears: it "turns the very employment of his calling "into a kind of religious duty and exercise of "his religion, without damage or detriment "to it."

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It would but weaken the impression of such noble sentiments as these, were I to pursue the subject farther. The application of them to his own case every man must make for himself. Every man has some calling or occupation in society (for his station, be it what it may, is, or ought to be, his occupation) in which he must "abide with God." Every calling has also its peculiar advantages and disadvantages; its opportunities of doing good, and its temptations to evil. To "abide " in it with God," implies a diligent endeavour to act with reference to both these; and thus

to sanctify, as it were, our worldly pursuits to His honour and service. This cannot be done without habitual attention to religious duties; especially those means of grace, by which we are to obtain help from above, to enable us to fulfil the will of God. Nevertheless, we are in effect discharging a very considerable part of our duty towards GOD, by performing our duties towards man, in obedience to His command; and we are acting as faithful disciples of CHRIST, when we do good to one another for Christ's sake.

Thus may we make our spiritual calling and election sure, without any neglect of our temporal callings; and having "used this "world as not abusing it," may confidently trust, that we are so passing through things temporal, as finally to lose not the things eternal. "Our fruit will be unto holiness, and "the end everlasting life "."

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q 1 Cor. vii. 31.

Rom. vi. 22.

SERMON XX.

2 TIMOTHY iii. 4.

Lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God

ST. PAUL, in giving instructions to Timothy for the government of the Church at Ephesus, states without reserve the difficulties to be encountered in the arduous station to which he had been appointed. A great portion of these would arise from the opposition made to the preachers of Christianity, not only by those who disbelieved and derided its doctrines, but by those also who "held the “truth in unrighteousness a," by those who "had the form of godliness, but denied the

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power thereof," by all who, whether they believed or not, were so wedded to their evil lusts and affections, that, rather than conform to the pure precepts of the Gospel, they would revile and persecute those who taught it in sincerity and truth. These evils, the Apostle states, would be characteristic of those "last

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days," when the Jewish dispensation had ex

a Rom. i. 18.

b 2 Tim. iii. 5.

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