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again within us, and make us to know the

power of His resurrection, make us to feel that our soul is His and not our own. And such a heart let us desire to have as moved those faithful women and Nichodemus to bring spices and ointments to anoint the Saviour's dead body: a heart to sanctify the Lord God within us.

Let us not desire a heart to think that any thing we do for Jesus can be enough to save our soul, but a heart to feel that every good thing, every good work, is far too small a return to Him for having already lived on the earth, and died on the cross for such miserable and unworthy sinners as we!

SERMON XII.

FOR THE LAST DAY OF THE YEAR.

ISAIAH Xxxviii. 1.

Set thine house in order.

1. HEZEKIAH, king of Judah, to whom this message was sent from the Lord, was a good man: a believer: one of the Lord's dear and secret ones. The Almighty gives this witness of him in holy Scripture : “He trusted in the Lord God of Israel: so that after him was none like him among all the kings of Judah, nor any that were before him. For he clave to the Lord and departed not from following Him, but kept His commandments, which the Lord commanded Moses. And the Lord was with him, and he prospered whithersoever he went forth.” One might have thought that such a man as he would be at any moment ready to leave this sinful world. But the Lord who searcheth the heart knew that Hezekiah had not got himself ready to depart and be with God. För “in those days was Hezekiah sick unto death, and Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amos, came unto him, and said unto him, thus saith the Lord, Set thine house in order : for thou shalt die, and not live.”. Dear friends, are we among the righteous, as Hezekiah was? Is the Lord with us, as He was with that good king, to bless us, to love us, to give us grace, and a faithful, humble, obedient heart? Then we shall have an ear to hear what the Spirit said to Hezekiah. Are not we sick? What mean those words, then, which we so continually speak before God, saying, "we have left undone those things which we ought to have done, and we have done those things which we ought not to have done, and there is no health in us?” Does not a

real christian mourn and groan, being burdened with such a grievous sickness of soul ? Does he not feel that he has indeed a house which needs to be set in order day by day? O! what a house is that human heart!

2. “ Set thine house in order." When shall we do this, and how, as regards our soul? Surely our daily doings at home may, with the help of God's word, shew us what is for our use, our safety, our comfort, our profit, our praise, our wealth, respecting the spiritual setting in order of ourselves, our souls and our bodies, that we may be ready either for death or for the speedy coming of our Lord JESUS Christ. “The soul of the diligent shall be made fat.” “Keep thy heart with all diligence.” We do not lie in bed all day, for fear of disturbing the furniture of our house, or putting our things out of order. No, it is impossible to have things in order without a diligent and industrious using of them. As

grace which

it is written: "by much slothfulness the building decayeth: and through idleness of the hands the house droppeth through.” Even so in spiritual things: slothfulness, and idleness, or fear, to use the means of the Lord hath furnished for our use, causes decay to the soul, and damage, discomfort, and loss. Rightly and diligently to use our house and the things in it, is therefore one means whereby decency and order are maintained. But we have much reason to be humbled, when we think of the many things in which we have so grievously fallen short during this present year. A little while, and this year will be for ever gone from us.

How much has been left undone! How much spiritual sloth and idleness and vain fears and doubts have been in us! How do we feel at this moment? Is your heart even now up

and awake unto CHRIST. Is a good work going on actively even now within you? Even this day, this last day of the year,

.

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