Page images

thoughts, lodging within us? Do we give them house-room, or rather heart-room If so, God asks us, “ How long shall vain thoughts lodge within thee P" Beloved, let us pay some attention to our thoughts, and determine in the Lord's strength, not to indulge, nor even tolerate any vain thoughts. Let us make use of all proper means to correct our thoughts, and bring them into conformity to God's thoughts. Especially let us carefully read, and diligently study, God's most

holy word. Let us frequently meditate on God's promises, our relation to him, and the duties springing out of the same. Let us closely examine ourselves, as in God's

presence, and by the light of his inspired word. Let us be much in prayer for divine teaching, direction, and sanctification. Let us compare ourselves with the examples set before us in the Bible, and our attainments with theirs. Let us often sit in judgment upon ourselves, our motives, aims and ends, and make conformity to God's will and word, the great object of our lives.

Remember, God requires vain thoughts to be attended to. He will not overlook or treat them lightly, if we do. If therefore we do not attend to them, and seek to be purged from them, he will, and the process may be very painful. He requires us to be like-minded with David, who said, "I hate vain thoughts, but thy law do I love." quires us to show our hatred, by our conduct towards them. As therefore God hates vain

He re

thoughts, if we neglect, or tolerate, or encourage them, he will correct us for so doing. Let us then seek deep and thorough sancti. fication; and pray, that our hearts may be wholly given up to God, be filled with the thoughts of God, and be ruled and controlled only by the Spirit of God.

Holy Lamb who thee receive,
Who in thee begin to live,
Day and night they cry to thee,
As thou art, so let us be !
Jesu, see my panting breast;
See I pant in thee to rest!
Gladly would I now be clean;
Cleanse me now from every sin.
Fix, O fix my wavering mind!
To the cross my spirit bind:
Earthly passions far remove :
Swallow up my soul in love.
Dust and ashes though we be,
Full of sin and misery,
Thine we are, thou Son of God:
Take the purchase of thy blood !
Boundless wisdom, power divine,
Love unspeakable are thine!
Praise by all to thee be given,
Sons of earth, and hosts of heaven.


“Now know I that the Lord will do me good.”— Judges xvii. 13. Many persons have an unfounded confidence, and come to unwarrantable conclusions. In this chapter, we have an account of a young man that robbed his mother; and that mother seems to have been a widow. Some persons

think it no sin to rob their parents, but it is a very heinous sin. For if it is a sin to rob any one, it is a very aggravated sin to rob the nearest and dearest relative we have.

The mother cursed the robber, not knowing that she was cursing her own child. The son was ashamed and restored the money, and then his mother told him that it was intended for him. How few know how to use money rightly. stole it, but could not enjoy it, and now the mother has recovered it, she has a graven image made with part of it.

This was an open violation of the law. Part of the house was now turned into a temple, and the family were proud of their worship. One thing was wanting, a lawful priest. А

The son

[ocr errors]

vagrant Levite in_those days of disorder comes that way. He is hired for the household. Micah is delighted, and exclaims, “Now know I that the Lord will do me good, seeing that I have a Levite to my priest.” But he was woefully mistaken, as the sequel shows. Let us try and improve the subject. There are some, who are justified in saying, under certain circumstances, “ Now know I, that the Lord will do me good.

Observe, the Lord does his people good. He does so in many ways, and by many means, and has said, “I will rejoice over thee to do thee good.” He does them good, by giving them his Spirit, as it is written, “Thou gavest also thy good Spirit to instruct them.Neh. ix. 20. To be taught of the Spirit, is essential to salvation. Being taught of the Spirit, proves our title to all covenant blessings. He does them good by afflicting their persons, as David acknowledges, It is good for me that I have been afflicted.” Psa. cxix. 71. We like ease, and health, and plenty of it; but in order to do us good, God sends us pain, and sickness, and poverty. He does us good by sanctifying our natures, hence we read, “ Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you, will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” Phil. i. 6. This good work is commenced in regeneration, and perfected in glorification. It is


our meetness for heaven, our fitness to appear before God, and our qualification for The service of God above. May the Lord fulfil in us all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power; that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ


be glorified in us, and we in him, according to the grace of our God, and the Lord Jesus Christ. Then he leads us, as he did Mary, to choose the good part, which shall never be taken away

Luke x. 42. This brings us to the feet of Jesus, calms our perturbed spirits, and leads us to hold sweet, heartaffecting, soul-transforming communion with him. He also orders our goings in his ways, as saith the Psalmist, “ The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord; and he delighteth in his way." Psa. xxxvii. 23. We are not left to wander at random, be driven about by circumstances, or be led by chance. But the Lord by his holy word, by his in. dwelling Spirit, and by his special providence, leads us right. So also he establishes us in grace,

"for it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace.

Heb. xiii. 9. That is in the glorious doctrines of grace, that we be not led to place any confidence in ceremonies, or services, or any thing that the creature can do ; but rest entirely on the grace of God, as displayed in the glorious person, and finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ. And then finally, he does us good, by giving us the kindgom, as

« PreviousContinue »