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less atrocious instances, might be specified, not very remote from the ordinary experience of life among ourselves, in which deluded men, with a blind intention to glorify God, disregard the morality of the means. They have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge.
How, then, shall the zealous intention be regulated in its efforts ? Not surely by the dictates of vague opinion, or wilful fancies; not by the impulse of head-strong passions, but only by the word of God. That word both prescribes the duty and the manner of performing it; and there is as much disregard of God shown in overlooking the prescribed manner, as in neglecting the prescribed end. There is an authorised rule, a departure from which is sin. To glorify God, therefore, we must take our directions from his own word; and he who continues ignorant of that word, or suffers its holy truths to slip out of his mind, through inattention or lack of serious thought, is plainly disqualified for duly fulfilling the requirement in the text.
Having premised these remarks, with respect to intention and manner, we now proceed to lay down some more specific and
positive directions for going about the great duty of glorifying God. And,
I.-Be well established in the doctrine of the text; and believe that ye are indeed bought with a price, and that Christ died for your sins, according to the Scriptures. It is said of Abraham, that “ against hope he believed in hope, and staggered not at the promise of God, through unbelief, but was strong in faith, giving glory to God." And, without controversy, Abraham glorified God more by believing the promise, than he could have done by disbelieving it; and by hoping against hope, than by sentiments of distrust or despair. Follow the pattern of Abraham's faith, ye who desire to glorify God. Why groan beneath a legal yoke any more? Come forth from the house and spirit of bondage, no more to fear! Rise to the liberty of the Lord's freed men! What wait ye for? Is not the redemption price discharged ? Hath not God said, “ I have found a ransom ?” Is that ransom inadequate ? or is it not free and available for you? Is it not recorded in the divine word, that he is *gave
himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time?” And wherefore not believe the testimony,
and that now? We do not say ye are warranted to believe, for the Gospel uses no such terms we say ye are required ; and wherefore not now believe? Do ye honour the Saviour, by holding his blood not sufficient for your redemption ? Or will it glorify the Father to act as if ye were still unransomedas if ye did look for another propitiation than that presented by the oblation of Christ? Who has not read of the fearful judgments poured out in the wilderness on a faithless, generation,
66 because they believed not God, and trusted not in his salvation.” Psal. lxxviii. 21.
O that sin of unbelief, how it dishonours God, and mars the peace of thousands ! " He that believeth not God, hath made him a liar, because he believeth not the record which he hath given of his Son." And is this to give him glory? How many are at this hour mournful and disconsolate, oppressed with fear, and groaning in misery, who might shout for joy, but for lack of faith? If they would give unto God the glory of his mercy; truth, and love
if they would credit the divine testimony respecting Christ's redemption-work, and rely upon it without suspicion and without distrust, how changed would their state be ? and
how much would God be glorified in the sight of angels and of men, by their unsuspeeting trust in his word, and their counting his testimony concerning Christ, worthy of all acceptation ? Without faith, it is impossible to please or to glorify God; And hence, we have placed belief in the doctrine of the text first in the order of glorifying duties, as not only supplying a motive, but as constituting a means. If the proposed ransom be declined, nothing can be done to glorify God; and we shall invariably advance, or come short of the divine glory, according to the faith which we ex. ercise.
He who believes, in the very act of faith glorifies the divine veracity. Then he goes forth free and filial in his duties, not to work for the ransom of life, but to live as the ransomed of the Lord. What a fine representation of Christian life is given us in the direction, s Glorify God!"
Away with legal objections, unbelieving fears, and selfish ends! Christ hath died for your sins, and God freely forgives them! What doth he require of thee, O sinner! but to dismiss suspicion, embrace the promise, return to reconciliation, and act as angels do in heaven, with godly fear indeed, and zealous compli.
ance, but without suspicious dread, for the glory of the blessed and only Potentate? We have lost innocence, and yet a way made known to us, which, while it secures penitential humility, releases the spirit from the thraldom of corruption and the depression of recollected guilt, and enables the sinner to glorify God, as freely as though we had never been at enmity with him, and even lays us under higher obligations, than had we never sinned. But if the doctrine in the text be not fully embraced, we leave the sinner still in the fearful pit, wherein there is no water. And though others glorify God, he cannot take a single step in that noble and ingenuous course.
If any tell us that they cannot believe themselves bought with a price, because they feel the fetters and the bondage of a servile state, and do experience none of the liberty of the redeemed ; our part is not to reason the matter with them, and reply to every minute objection they produce against the Lord, or in justification of their own incredulity : We are sent to preach liberty to the captive, and the opening of the prison doors to them that are bound; we are bid say to them, “. Come forth, and glorify God for your redemption.” If any have