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tion? Or do we, through want of humility and condefcenfion, cause our good to be evil spoken of ? Professors walk worthy of their vocation, when they en. deavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace; are meek and lowly, forbear one another in love, and forgive one another. “ Thé wisdom from “ above is pure, peaceable, gentle, and easy to be in“ treated, full of mercy and good fruits, without par“ tiality and without hypocrify."
Would to God that our young people may realize the present truth! To glorify him, and finish the work HE hath given them to do, is the end for which they were born and sent into the world. This is the earliest lefson they were taught in their tender years. To this great duty they are bound to attend first of all, and above all things. In the gifts of nature and providence, and in a Christian education, they have received much from God. The spirit of gratitude faith, To him be glory.
Have you then made choice of God? Do you seek his glory, by devoting to him every power, enjoyment and business? Are you ambitious of a reputation for early fobriety? And if so, does conscience testify that you really are, what you would be thought to be, most of all concerned that God may be glorified in and by you? If you draw nigh him in acts of worship, do you consider that he will be fanctified in them that come nigh him ?--that he is not glorified by the mere form of piety, the heart being far from him; but when you worship in spirit and truth? Have you considered, that your labor in the things of this life, all laudable pursuits and industry, and all enjoyments of life, should be holiness to the Lord?---that whether you eat, drink or converse, or wherever or however you are employed, God requireth you to keep his glory in view? He is glorified when every man minds his own business; abiding in that calling wherein God hath called him, whether rich or poor, high or low. God will be glo
rified, not only amidst the business, but also amidst the amusements of life. He will be glorified in all the relations and connections which you form or fuftain. He will be glorified in the day of prosperity and in the day of adversity. Othat there were such an heart in all young persons! that they might begin life with fuch fóber reflections; and resolve, by divine grace, to form themselves upon a plan of life at once so reasonable, useful, dignified and comfortable.
A life thus referred to the glory of God is actuated by a principle immutable as his perfections--a principle which teaches how to pass through honor and dishonor, affluence and indigence, joy and sorrow; and will support in all afflictions. Swayed by this principle, with this fupreme end, every benevolent affection is cultivated on a süre basis, and exerted on all occasions. It operates by univerfal love: It overcomes the world : Under the government of it, men dare to be fingular in a good cause, are not ashamed of the gospel, nor do they fear what they may suffer for it, while they make it their care to give no just offence.
The example of the Saviour, beyond all others, unites glory to God and good will to men. And if he was actuated by the joy set before him, let no one pretend, that his disciples, while actuated by the hope of the heavenly retributions, do not seek the glory of God. May this mind be in us which was also in CHRIST Jesus. AMEN.
SPECIAL ENCOURAGEMENT TO EARLY
PROVERBS viii. 17.
THOSE THAT SEEK ME EARLY SHALL FIND ME.
HE former clause of the verse is, “I love them < that love me." To seek God therefore denotes the same as the love of God; and to find him the same as to be the objects of his special love. Every thing which interferes with his approbation must be renounced. An ardent, fupreme and steady desire to please him, a diligent use of the means he hath ordained, and endeavors to serve him with all our heart, are included in seeking him. Thus to seek him is to have none in heaven but God; none upon earth that we desire befide him.
The text especially recommends early seeking. In the holy scriptures we have many commendations and examples of early piety, and exhortations to it.
The least reflection will shew our young people, that they could not be the authors of their own existence; nor are able to preserve it one moment—that the inspiration of the Almighty hath given understanding to man that in him all live, and have their being--that every good gift is from him. They feel an immortal principle within them. They have the power of deliberating and choosing, of acting or suspending action. Some things, which, at first view, may seem to be for their worldly interest, are found, upon reflection, to be injurious to it. Capable of enjoyments superior to those of the animal life, and which depend not on any thing external, it must be wise, for the sake of these, to forego sensitive enjoyments, and hazard external sufferings.
No enquiry can be so just and proper as this: What fhall we render to the infinite Being, who hath form, ed us to shew forth his praise? who holdeth our souls in life? who heapeth his favors upon us, though unworthy of the least? and who, above all, hath given his own Son to ransom us from sin and death; and promised in him greater things than eye hath seen, or ear heard, or have entered into the heart of man? Where is God my Maker, Preserver, Benefactor and Father? the God of all grace? that I may know and fear him, love and trust in him ?.O that I knew where I might find him. Am I one of the human apostacy, who have been redeemed with the precious blood of Emmanuel? This mercy demands that my forfeited, ranfomed life be confecrated to my God and Redeem
To the command, Seek ye my face, may my heart answer, Thy face, Lord, will I seek.
What I have now in view is to point out the fpecial encouragement of success to early religious enquiries and endeavors. This encouragement may be argued, first, from the influence of early habit. Secondly, from the instructions and declarations of the sacred fcriptures.
First, from the influence of early habit.
Habits of thoughtfulness or inattention, circumspection or carelessness, deliberation or precipitancy, diligence or floth, frugality or profufion, are early formed-Also propensities to truth or falfhood, justice or injustice, benevolence or malevolence, purity or impurity, things honorable or infamous, a reverence or contempt of God and providence. We are attached to the ways and manners of our education. Superftition has strong hold of minds educated in it. May not an acquaintance with true religion, in early life;
form a like attachment to it? If so, then they who seek the Lord early shall find; for he loveth those who worship, as he requireth, in spirit and truth.
In religion, as in other concerns, some seasons are more favorable than others. Who questions but the first opportunity for any useful purpose is the best? Men uniformly proceed upon this fupposition in things of the present life. Those at least do so, who have any claim to be thought wise and prudent. If therefore the young have the means of religion, and a capacity for it, what period can be fo convenient and promising as theirs? Native depravity will otherwise
grow with their growth, and strengthen with their “ strength.” As was just observed, some habits will be formed—some principles and manners: Whether they be good or evil is not of small moment. Timothy's early and rare proficiency in divine knowledge, his improvement of instructions imparted in childhood, and imitation of the faith and piety of
parents who guided his tender years, afforded the highest reason to believe that he would prove a friend and distinguished ornament of the Christian religion.
Those who begin life in any occupation, art or science with good advice and confideration, and with proper application to the employment they have choTen, bid fair for success and eminence in their favorite pursuit. Suppose then that the mind is early stored with virtuous and Christian principles, that it is early turned to the things of God; is there not a'well founded hope that its path may shine more and more. But fuppose that early culture in such principles is neglected; may it not be presumed that the mind will be poifoned with baneful principles, resembling the soil overgrown with briers and thorns, not to be eradicated without the greatest difficulty, if indeed they can ever be eradicated? The first stages of life are best adapted to the acquisition of any useful knowledge, and especially of religious knowledge. They have not to encoun