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always to be great and opulent. Happiness, God be praised, is not annexed, and is not confined, to the fuperior stations of life. There is a great difference between poffeffing the good things of life, and enjoying them. Whatever be his rank in life, the meek man bids the fairest chance for enjoying its advantages. A proud and paffionate man puts his happiness in the power of every fool he meets with. A failure in duty or affection from a friend, want of respect from a dependant, and a thousand little circumstances, which a candid man would overlook, disturb his repofe. (He is perpetually on the fret, and his life is one scene of anxiety after another.) On the other hand, the meek is not disturbed by the tranfactions of this fcene of vanity. He is difpofed to be pleased at all events. Instead of repining at the fuccefs of those around him, he rejoices in their prosperity, and is thus happy in the happiness of all his neighbours. Such are the bleffed effects of meeknefs on the character. This beam from heaven kindles joy within the mind: it fpreads a ferenity over the countenance, and diffufes a kind of funshine over the whole life. It puts us out of the power of accidents. It keeps the world at a due distance. It is armour to the mind, and keeps off the arrows of wrath. It preferves a fanctuary within, calm and holy, which nothing can disturb. Safe and happy in this afylum, you smile at the madness of the multitude. You hear the tempeft raging around, and fpending its strength in vain. As this virtue contributes to our happiness here, fo it is alfo the best preparation for the happiness which is above. It is the very temper of the heavens. It is the difpofi-

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tion of the faints in light, and angels in glory; of that blessed fociety of friends, who rejoice in the prefence of God, and who, in mutual love, and joint hofannahs of praife, enjoy the ages of eternity.

To conclude: There is hardly a duty enjoined in the whole book of God, on which more stress seems often to be laid, than this virtue of meeknefs." The "Lord loveth the meek.-The meek will he beauti66 with his falvation.-He arifes to fave the meek "of the earth." Chrift was fent to preach "glad "tidings to the meek." Upon this our Lord refts his own character. "Learn of me, for I am meek." In the epiftles of Paul, there is a remarkable expreffion: "I beseech you by the meekness and the gen"tleness of Chrift." The Holy Ghoft too, is called "the Spirit of Meeknefs." Implore then, O Christian the affiftance of the Divine Spirit, that he may endow you with this virtue, and that you may show in your life the meeknefs of wisdom.

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ISAIAH lviii. 7.

-Deal thy bread to the hungry :-hide not thyself from thine own flesh.

WHY there are fo many evils in the

world, is a queftion that has been agitated ever fince men felt them. As God is poffeffed of all perfections, he could have created the univerfe without evil. To him, revolving the plan of his creation, every benevolent fyftem prefented itfelf; how came it then to pafs, that a Being, neither controlled in power, nor limited in wifdom, nor deficient in goodnefs, fhould create a world in which many evils are to be found, and much fuffering to be endured? It becomes not us, with too prefumptuous a curiosity, to affign the caufes of the Divine conduct, or with too daring a hand, to draw afide the veil which cov ers the councils of the Almighty. But from this state of things, we fee many good effects arife. That industry which keeps the world in motion; that fociety, which, by mutual wants, cements mankind together; and that charity, which is the bond of perfection, would neither have a place nor a name, but for the evils of human life. Thus the enjoyments of life are grafted upon its wants; from natural evil arifes moral good, and the fufferings of fome contribute to the happiness of all. Such being the state of human affairs, charity, or that difpofition which leads

us to fupply the wants and alleviate the fufferings of unhappy men, as well as bear with their infirmities, must be a duty of capital importance. Accordingly it is enjoined in our holy religion, as being the chief of the virtues. There is no duty commanded in Scripture, on which so much stress is laid, as on the duty of charity. It is affigned as the teft and criterion by which we are to distinguish the disciples of Jefus, and it will be felected at the great day, as being that part of the character which is moft decifive of the life, and according to which the laft fentence is to turn. Charity, in its moft comprehenfive fenfe, fignifies that difpofition of mind, which, from a regard and gratitude to God, leads to all the good in our power to man. Thus, it takes in a large circle, extending to all the virtues of the focial, and many graces of the divine life. But as this would lead us into a wide field, all that I intend at prefent is, to confider that branch of charity which is called Almsgiving; and, in treating upon it, fhall, in the first place, Show you how alms ought to be beftowed; and, fecondly, Give exhortations to the practice of this duty.

The first thing propofed was, To fhow you what is the most proper method of bestowing charity. this inquiry is the more neceffary, as, in the neighbourhood of great cities, we are always surrounded by the needy and importunate, and it is often difficult to distinguish those who are proper objects of charity, from those who are not.

The best method of beftowing charity upon the healthy and the ftrong, is to give them employment. Almighty God created us all for industry and ac


tion. He never intended that any man upon the face of the earth fhould be idle. Accordingly, he hath placed us in a ftate which abounds with incentives to indufry, and in which we must be active, in order to live. One half of the vices of men take their origin from idlenefs. He who has nothing to do, is an eafy prey to the tempter. Men must have occupation of one kind or other. If they are not employed in useful and beneficial labours, they will engage in those which are pernicious and criminal. To fupport the indolent, therefore, to keep thofe idle who are able to work, is acting contrary to the intention of God, is doing an injury to fociety, which claims a right to the fervices of all its members, is defrauding real objects of charity of that which is their proper due, and is foftering a race of fluggards, to prey upon the vitals of a state. But he is a valuable member of fociety, and merits well of all mankind, who by devifing means of employment for the industrious, delivers the public from an useless incumbrance, and makes thofe who would otherwife be the pests of society, useful subjects of the commonwealth. If it be merit, and no small merit it is, to improve the face of a country; to turn the defert into a fruitful field, and make the barren wastes break forth into finging; it is much more meritorious to cultivate the deferts in the moral world; to render those who might be otherwife pernicious members of fociety, happy in themselves, and beneficial to the ftate; to convert the talent that was wrapt up in a napkin into a public ufe; and by opening a new fource of induftry, make life and health to circulate through the whole political body. Such a perfon is

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