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man wetan, as unity

with respects of Johan Mitch
A SERMON,

ft, suchalarla

sey

DELIVERED AT THE

FUNERAL

OF THE

HON. THOMAS FITCH, Esq.,

LATE GOVERNOR OF THE COLONY OF CONNECTICUT,

By MOSES DICKINSON, A.M.,

PASTOR OF THE FIRST CHURCH IN NORWALK,

Psalm cXI. 6.—The righteous shall be in everlasting remembrance,

NEW HAVEN:

Printed by THOMAS AND SAMUEL Green.

MDCCLXXIV.

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A FUNERAL SERMON.

ACTS XIII, 26.

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For David after he had served his generation, by the will of

God, fell on sleep, and was laid unto his fathers, and saw

corruption.
The Christian religion is founded upon the resurrection
of Christ. For if Christ is raised from the dead, then all the
doctrines of our holy religion, are divinely true; but if
Christ be not raised, our faith is vain, and we are yet in our
sins. That our Saviour put the proof of his divine mission,
upon this event, was publicly known; so that the chief priests,
and pharisees came together unto Pilato, saying, sir, we remem-
ber, that that deceiver said while he was yet alive, after three
days I will rise again. And accordingly, with Pilate's con-
sent, they made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting
a watch. But it was not possible, that he should be holden by
the pains of death : for him hath God raised up, and exalted
with his right hand, to be a prince and Suv.our ; for to give
repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins. The Apostles
therefore everywhere insist upon the importance of this
Revelation on which so much depends. And particularly
in our text, and context, the Apostle Paul undertakes to
prove, that David did not speak of himself; but in the per-
son of Christ; when he says in the 16th Psalm, Thou wilt
not suffer thine holy One to see corruption. For he whom God
raised again, saw no corruption. But David after he had
served his generation, by the will of God, fell on sleep, and was
laid unto his fathers, and saw corruption.

But from these words we may observe:
I. That men can never obtain a better, and a more hon-

orable character, than by serving their generation by the will of God.

II. That good men must die as well as others.

III. That they who serve their generation, by the will of God, will when they die, sleep in Jesus, and rest from their labors.

I. That men can never obtain a better, and a more hon. orable character, than by serving their generation, by the will of God.

I shall here,

1. I shall endeavor to shew what is implied, by serving our generation by the will of God.

2. Shew the evidences of this truth.

1. I shall endeavour to shew what is implied, by serving our generation by the will of God.

And,

1. To serve our generation by the will of God, implies, that we have a gracious respect to God, in every business of life, that we are employed in. His glory must be the governing end of our lives. Whether, therefore, (says the Apostle), ye eat, or drink, or whatever ye do; do all to the glory of God. But men cannot sincerely aim at the glory of God, in any one thing that they do, unless they are renewed by divine grace. Mankind are in such a state of de. pravity, that all the world are become guilty before God. Not only abandoned sinners, whose sins go before hand to judg. ment; such as are mentioned I. Cor. 9, 10. Fornicators, idolators, adulterers, effeminate, abusers of themselves with mankind, thieves, covetous, drunkards, and extortioners; but those who are more sober, and civilized, while unregenerate, are continually exposed to the wrath of God, who is a consuming fire. All the descendants of Adam, are children of wrath by nature, one as well as another. We

may say selves, what David said of himself, Psal. 51, 5, Behold I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.

all

of our

Hence it follows, that there is an absolute necessity, that we should be created in Christ Jesus, unto good works; and that our hearts should be circumcised, that we may love the Lord our God, with all our hearts, and with all our souls, and act from an higher principle than mere self love. For none of us should live to himself, and no man should die to himself. For whether we live, we should live unto the Lord, or whether we die, we should die, unto the Lord; whether we live therefore, or die, we may be the Lord's. But,

2. To serve our generation by the will of God, implies that we are employed in some proper business, whereby we may provide for our own comfort, and be useful to others. Idleness is a sin, that is testified against in the holy scriptures, and discountenanced in all civilized states. It contradicts the end of our creation, makes men become a burden to the world, and makes them become a prey, to every vile lust and temptation. All creatures in heaven and earth, are employed in the service of God, mankind only excepted; and they are generally useful, and serviceable to

The blessed angels, and glorified saints, rest without rest, day and night, sounding forth the praises of their great Creator. What good offices departed saints do for us, we know not; tho' we know that they are concerned for our welfare. But the angels are all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister, to them that shall be heirs of salvation. The sun, moon and stars, continually praise God; and minister to our support and comfort; and the air, earth, and sea, and all that in them is, contribute to promote the same end. Surely then we should not be idle, when all the world around us, is at work. But, however, we had better be idle, and do nothing at all, than to be employed, in doing mischief. And, therefore, the business that we should be engaged in, should be a lawful employment. They that will be rich, by following an unlawful occupation, fall into temptation, and a snare, and into

any foolish and hurtjul lusts, which drown men in destruc

us.

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