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sparing the confusion of depressed virtue, and rejoice to relieve the hand of falling worth, that cannot dig, and to beg is ashamed; knowing that God who loveth, will also reward the chearful giver.

And lastly, the charity of the true Christian will not only extend itself to the bodies, but also to the souls of men. And indeed, little as this is generally regarded, it is perhaps the noblest exercise of Christian benevolence. It is humane to feed the hungry, it is kind to clothe the naked, it is merciful to be feet to the lame and eyes to the blind, to deserve the blessing of the fatherless, and make the widow's heart to sing for joy : But how much nobler is it to restore the wandering sinner back to God and his duty, to snatch the profane infidel from the gates of hell, to awaken the impenitent, to comfort the broken-hearted mourner, to instruct the ignorant, to extend the glorious light of the Gospel to remote kingdoms, and open the gates of immortality to nations that now sit in darkness and the shadow of death? These are in


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deed glorious objects of charity ; as much exceeding the relief of men's temporal distresses, as the soul is more noble than the body, as the years of eternity are of more importance than the span of life. He therefore who is filled with a true sense of the duty of benevolence, will never want employment for his wealth or his abilities, so long as there is one body made after the image of God to be elothed or fed; so long as there is one soul, for whom Christ died, to be coinforted, reformed, or instructed.

Such are the duties of charity and benevolence recommended by the great Apostle of the Gentiles to those, whom Providence had blessed with affluence. And to add weight to this recommendation, he commands Timothy (3dly), To lay before them the noble reward, which would await their compassion extended to the poor members of Christ: “laying up in “ store for themselves a good foundation

against the time to come, that they may

lay hold on eternal life.” : A reward indeed truly noble and desirable, suffi



cient to animate the coldest, and make the weak strong! For what is it that is offered ? Not the fading splendor of an earthly crown; not the unstable pomp of mortal greatness; not the transient raptures of human pleasure; not the existence of a few days, or months, or years: but it is the offer of a heavenly kingdom that cannot decay; it is the offer of immortal powers; it is the offer of unchangeable happiness; it is the offer of an eternal existence in the presence of God and his angels. And all this in return for that small pittance we bestow out of our abundance upon the sons and daughters of affliction, in obedience to God's command, and from a heart animated with the enlivening beams of Christian faith and benevolence. Such an offer, if rightly weighed, is sufficient to make us run with eagerness the race that is set before us, to make us grasp with joy the out-stretched hand of indigence, and contend who shall be foremost in discharging the duties of humanity, to which these great things are promised.

To do good, therefore, and to communicate, let us not forget; knowing that with such sacrifices God is well pleased, and will not forget our work and labour of love,

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And surely I may without injustice say, that there never can be a fairer opportunity of discharging the duty of benevolence than in the support of that amiable and charitable institution, for which I now stand a willing, though unable, advocate, For what branch is there of this duty which we may not, nay must not, exercise, in contributing to the maintenance and instruction of these poor innocents now before us ?

Is it a principle of this duty to do good to all men freely and without distinction of persons, or partiality of affections ? Here we may do it in the most perfect manner, and in the highest degree, For, in selecting and maintaining these poor objects, there is no distinction made of friend or foe, of sect or party. They stand not here imploring your benevolence, as being the children of those from whom



have received past, or · expect future favours; their true recommendation

that they are the children of God and the children of affliction. Your benevolence is therefore free, generous, and disinterested; is agreeable to that noble precept of the gospel, which commands us “ to do good unto all men, hoping for “ nothing again.”

Are we again commanded to be rich in good works, and to diffuse the beams of charity on all around us? This kind institution will never fail to supply us with the means and opportunities of doing it. For so long as sin and calamity continue to make their ravages in this wide extended world, so long objects of our charity will never be wanting, adequate to the most enlarged and diffusive benevolence. Indeed every day and hour is adding to the number of them; and we need but look around us to see thousands, who, from those various changes and chances of life to which every man is exposed, stand in need of that protection K 4


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