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into a discussion of the Divine attributes, of Omnipotence, of Omnipresence, and those, which describe a range above human comprehension; but we ask, are not love and perfection inalienable attributes of God, and attributes continually manifested in this world of creatures ? God is love, an eternal being, without body, parts, or passions, and all his works are designed for the happiness of his creatures. Look at the earth, whereon we tread; see the beauty and the uniformity of nature presenting to the eye all the gorgeous works of creation, yielding for man the fruits, by which his very existence is supported, and his happiness accomplished. Look above the earth, and admire the clouds, from whose treasurehouse the rains descend at the Divine bidding to water and refresh the soil. Look beyond them and see, with the eye of faith, the heavens and all their glory, the abode of God, and the eternal mansions prepared for his faithful followers. Look at the sun in his might and the innumerable constellations of the firmament. Behold the one lighting up man's path, and warming the earth with those genial rays, by which we are enabled to observe the works of the Creator: and look up to the others, those nocturnal evidences of God's power, probably worlds, subjects of his mercy, and of his love to his creatures, like our own, and let the knowledge, with which all these things should furnish us, teach us that the attributes of God are love and perfection. His ways and his works are characteristic of them both. They are the principal feature of all his acts towards us, and every blessing, which we enjoy, proceeds from him. Have we the knowledge of these things ? It is almost an offence to the enlightened mind to ask it: but “some have not the knowledge of God; I speak this to
shame.” But secondly, the knowledge of God is an acquaintance with his mercies.
The mercies of God, we are told, “ fail not; they are new every morning.” But the greatest mercy, which we enjoy, is our redemption by Jesus Christ. For nothing existed on man's part, which could claim redemption :-if then it was not man's lawthis mercy
fül right, it was a mercy on the part of God. Have we then the knowledge of
? Are we acquainted with the whole scheme of redeeming love ? Do we know, how Adam fell in Paradise and entailed sin upon all his descendants, and how the Saviour came into the world and suffered punishment for us
while we were yet sinners ?” The happy spot devoted to bliss—the fore-state of heaven was defiled by the sinful creature—but the mercy of God redeemed us; and when at length the law was given, he redeemed those under it and ourselves“ from the curse of the law, by being made a curse for us.” Here then was mercy,
“not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and gave his only Son for us, that whosoever believeth in him should have eternal life.” Thus magnificently was this peculiar attribute of God manifested in the sinful creature--man lost, became redeemed - the man of nature became the man of grace. Mercy was shown to him, and that at a time when he was most sinful. How can we sufficiently value the redemption by Jesus Christ! What would you
say, were you condemned before an earthly tribunal to die, and when upon the scaffold one beholding the awful spectacle should rush to the executioner and offer to die in your stead! What say you to the dungeoncaptive pinioned down by links of iron upon the bed of straw, and then suddenly set free through the mercy of his accuser ! Or what think you of the harassed slave, suffering under the cruel strokes of a hard task-master, on a sudden emancipated from the galling thraldom of tyranny! Such has been literally the case of the descendants of Adam. We have been condemned to die, but one has died in our stead. We have been captives bound to the earth by more than links of iron, but now are free — we have been harassed by more than the goad of the task-master, but now are emancipated--we were the children of darkness, but now are the children of light, born anew of the Spirit, redeemed by Christ, and sanctified by the Holy Ghost. Have we the knowledge of these mercies ? Do we feel that we are redeemed? Oh! no, we scarcely do; the old nature, the
hankering after evil, the desire of the flesh, yet remain; we refuse to receive “the knowledge of God; I speak this to your shame.” These
be deemed small matters, but they are of vital import ! It is the Gospel, which should attract us, and not the vehicle, in which it is conveyed. We desire to produce the proper feeling in the heart, to spiritualize it by what we proclaim. Speaking thus plainly we may offend the pride of the human heart; this affords another touch-stone, whereby you may discern, whether you have the knowledge of God.
The chief knowledge of God is redemption by Jesus Christ; to learn the value of it (which only can be learned by considering the low estate, to which we have been brought, and to which we continually bring ourselves), should be our continual object. For it is only by learning the situation of ourselves, that we can value redemption. If we know not what we absolutely require, we cannot know what Christ absolutely gained. If we are ignorant of the extent of our sin, we must remain ignorant of the