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communion with the real members. A dead branch in the ecclesiastical vine, however honourable may be the situation it occupies, must at last be cut down, and be cast into the fire ; it is fit only for the burning flames. In his public discourses a minister can only please God, when he preaches Jesus Christ and Him crucified faithfully, affectionately, and laboriously. To the cross, and to that alone, he must direct the attention of his hearers, if he would truly please God. And then his own example must recommend the ways of God to his congregation. He . must adorn the gospel he preaches by his conduct in his own family, in the church, and in the world; evidencing by their effects upon himself the superiority of Christian motives to those which the schools of philosophy and ethics have promulgated to mankind. And with respect to those private members who compose our congregations, they can only truly please God as they receive with meekness the engrafted word, and bring forth fruit with patience. It is not a mere occupation of their pews at church, nor even a diligent attendance on its most sacred ordinance, that will intitle them to any share of Divine complacency. “ For if any mạn be a
hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like “unto a man beholding his natural face in a
glass: for he beholdeth himself and goeth his, “ way, and straightway forgetteth what manner " of man he was.
But whoso looketh into the “perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, “ he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of “ the word, this man shall be blessed in his 66 deed."*
* James i, 23, 24, 25.
Our venerable reformers have not left us in a state of uncertainty as to the agency necessary to enable us thus "truly to please God." They inform us that neither Bishops, Curates, nor their congregations, can act in an acceptable manner before Him, without "the continual "dew of His blessing." By this beautiful and scriptural image they inculcate on us the necessity of a Divine influence to the production of every good thought, word, and work. The ground, or surface of the earth, affords a striking emblem of the heart of man, and is fre quently introduced in this metaphorical sense in the sacred pages. * The ground was created
to bear fruit for the use of man, as man's heart was formed to yield fruit to the praise and glory of God. But as, in consequence of the fall, a curse was denounced on the soil, so that it now requires labour and culture before it will yield its fruits, in like manner the human heart is become barren and unfruitful, so that it can produce no fruits of righteousness, but on the contrary, like the ground, it yields spontane ously the thorns and briars of sin to the dishonour of God, till it be created anew in Christ Jesus. And moreover, as continual rains or dews must be dispensed to fertilize the earth, so must a constant supply of grace be communicated from God, for the purpose of creating in us "all holy desires, all good counsels, and all "just works." It would be easy to carry the parallel further, but enough has been said to demonstrate the beautiful propriety of the emblem, and the end for which it is here introduced.
*Matt. xiii. 3, &c.
Is. lv. 10, 11. Hos. x. 4, & al. freq. † Gen. iii. 17.
We ask all these blessings " for the honour of
our Advocate and Mediator Jesus Christ." It is for His honour that Bishops and Curates be found faithful, diligent, and successful, and
, that the people derive that benefit from their labours of which His atonement is the meritorious cause.
He is our Advocate, and pleads on our behalf; our Mediator, and represents our persons.
While we are lifting up our hearts and hands in supplication here below, may He intercede for us in heaven! Then shall our Bishops and Curates, and all congregations committed to their charge, richly enjoy the healthful Spirit of God's grace, and the continual dew of His blessing, and so our Jerusalem shall become a praise in the earth. Amen,
On the Prayer for all Conditions of Men.
HE whole of our duty may be summed up
in two points, the love of God and the love of our neighbour. And these duties are so intimately blended, that a separation between them is absolutely impossible: for “ if a man
say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he " is a liar. For he that loveth not his brother,
whom he hath seen, how can he love God, 66 whom he hath not seen? And this com“ mandment have we from Him, that he who “ loveth God love his brother also.”* What an affecting picture of the amiable nature of true Christianity does our Lord's most beautiful parable of the good Samaritan exhibit! Let me address the reader in the words with which it is concluded, “ Go thou, and do likewise." Are you ready to say, “ Alas, my means are “ too limited for diffusive liberality; and the “ situation of the far greater part of my breth“ ren, under which term the whole human race " is comprehended, is too remote to be benefited
by me?” Love is the fulfilment of the law; and if this Godlike temper prevail in your bosom, you will labour, to the utmost extent of your ability, to “ do good unto all men, and
especially to them that are of the household
i John iv. 20, 21.
a of faith.” And though your power of actual beneficence be restricted by Providence within a compass as narrow as her's who cast her two mites into the treasury of the temple; yet the feelings of your heart are unconfined, and may range through the world, like the solar beams, visiting every nook of the terrestrial globe where a brother may be found. There is one office of Christian friendship which we may constantly perform on behalf of every participant of buman nature. And as God has required this at our hands, declaring it to be His holy will that “ prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks « be made for ALL men;
our church calls us to the performance of this duty at every recurring season when her united throng appears before the throne of grace, teaching us to pray for all conditions of men in the following appropriate form.
“ O God, the Creator and Preserver of all “ mankind, we humbly beseech Thee for all “ sorts and conditions of men, that Thou " wouldest be pleased to make Thy ways known ? unto them, Thy saving health unto all nations. “ More especially we pray for the good estate “ of the catholic church; that it may be so
guided and governed by Thy good Spirit, “ that all who profess and call themselves. “ Christians may be led into the way of truth, “ and hold the faith in unity of spirit, in the “ bond of peace, and in righteousness of life.
Finally, we commend to Thy Fatherly good“ness all those who are any ways afflicted or