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and Deformity of a reafonable Nature, so Holiness and Righteousnefs is it's true Beauty and Glory, and perfect RighteOusness is perfect Beauty in an intellectual and moral Sense. With what Admiration and Delight then should we raise our Views to the pure unblemished Glories of the supreme Being, whose uripolluted Essence can never admit the least Stain of moral Defilement: On this Account the blessed Angels celebrate and adore him, saying Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Hofts! If. vi. 3. and the Church joins in that noble Hymn of Praise : Jüft and true are thy Ways, o thou King of Saints: Who all not fear thee, and glorify thy Name? For thou only art holy. Rev. xv. 3, 4. It cannot but yield the highest Satisfaction to a well-disposed Mind tɔ be assured that infinite Righteousness governs the World, and presideth over the universal Administration of Things ! to observe the Holiness and Righteousness of God shining forth in the Precepts of his Law, and admirably, exemplified in the Life and Practice of his well-beloved Son Jesus Christ our Lord! And then to consider that infinitely holy and righteous Being as encouraging the imperfect Beginnings of Holiness and Virtue here on D


Earth, and sending his Holy Spirit to affist our sincere Endeavours ! Tbe righteous Lord loveth Righteousnefs, bis Countenance dotb. behold the Upright. Pl. xi. 7. The great End of his Dispensations towards us is that we may be made Partakers of bis Holinefs Heb. xii. 10. This therefore is that to which a good Man ardently afpires, to make a conitant Progress in real Holiness of Heart and Life; and he looketh forward with Joy to the heavenly World, where he hopes to be free from all moral Defilement, and to be holy as God is holy, as far as the limited Capacity of his Nature will permit.

Fifthly, It is delightful to contemplate God as a Being of steady Faithfulness and Truth. This indeed may be justly regarded as a Branch of his Righteousness, but it well deserves to be distinctly confidered, and is frequently celebrated in the facred Writings. God is there faid to be abundant in Goodness and Truth. Exod. xxxiv. 6, and is called by Way of Eminency the God of Truth. If. Ixv. 16. It is a melancholy Reflection, that there is so little Truth to be found among Mankind, so that we are sometimes ready to fay in our Haste with the Psalmist, All Men are Liars. Pf. cxvi. II, Their


Words, their Promises, their professed Friendships are little to be depended upon.

But it is God's glorious Character, that be cannot lie. Tit. i. 2.

It is as impossible for him to lie, as it is for him to deny bimfelf. On him therefore we may safely rely, believing the Revelations he hath given us, trusting in his Word, and rejoicing in his 'Promises : He will ever be mindful of his Covenant. Justly therefore may we cry out with Joy and Transport : For ever, O'Lord, thy Word is settled in Heaven ; thy Faithfulness is unto all Generations. Ps. cxix. 89, 90. O praise the Lord, all ye Nations ; praise him, all ye People: For his 'merciful Kindness is great towards us ; 'the Truth of the Lord endureth for ever. Praise ye the Lord. Pf. cxvii.

This leads me to observe, That it mightily heighteneth the Pleasure which a good Man taketh in the divine Perfečtions to consider that this infinitely perfect and glorious Being is from everlasting to everlasting the same. All finite created Beings are liable to Change : The most perfect of them all may possibly, if left to themselves, fall from their Excellency, their Righteousness and Goodness, in a greater or lefser Degree, But God is


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absolutely immutable in his Existence and in his Perfections, and can never possibly become less perfect, less powerful, wise, good, and righteous than he is : With him is no Variableness, nor Shadow of Turning, Jam. i. 17.

The Counsel of the Lord ftundeth for ever, the Thoughts of his Heart unto ail Generations. Pf. xxxiii. II. His most gracious Purpofes of Love towards us are stable and fure : His Gifts and Calling are without Repentance. Rom. xi. 29.

What a solid Foundation doth this lay for a noble Confidence in God, and in Consequence of this for a divine Joy! In him alone may the Mind, wearied with the Uncertainty and Instability of all earthly Things, fafely and delightfully acquiesce, and enjoy a fure and everlasting Repofe.

I add, that the Consideration of the Divine Omnipresence, which is so apt to ftrike the Wicked with Terror, is full of Consolation and Joy to good and upright Souls. How comforting is it to think that this unchangeably glorious and allperfeet Jehovah, this most wise, powerful, hoiy, and beneficent Being, filleth Hiziren and Earth, and every Part of this vast Universe, with bis Presence! He is not far from every one of us, seeing it is in him that we live, and move, and have our Being. Acts xvii. 27, 28. A good Man may be banished from his House, from -his Friends, and from his Country; but he cannot be banished from his God. The Power and Malice of his greatest Enemies cannot deprive him, or intercept his gracious Communications. His Joy may be said to be ever near to him, fince God is always near to him, who is the chief Object as well as Author of his Joy. What a pleasing Thought is it, that, wherever he is, be it in a Wilderness or in a Dungeon, his heavenly Father, and almighty Friend, is with him there, who feeth all his Difficulties and Distresses, and is able to grant him all needful Afsistances and Supports, and will in the End cause all Things to work for his real Benefit! The Man who firmly believes this, and fincerely endeavours to approve himself to God in a Course of dutiful Obedience, may upon just Grounds rejoice even in Tribulation, saying, when Things have the most uncomfortable Afpect, I have set the Lord always before me ; because he is at my right Hand, I shall not be moved; therefore my Heart is glad, and pry Glory rejoiceth, &c. Pf. xvi. 8.


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