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its influence with the gentler and more attractive influence of love, that we may abstain from all iniquity, and "perfect holiness in the fear of the Lord." FINLAYSON.

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16.ON CONTINUANCE IN WELL-DOING. Tolko z IN the path to glory, Christians, you are compassed about with a great cloud of witnesses, who are at once the spectators and the examples of your virtue. Look back to the saints recorded in the page of Scripture, and behold their patience in suffering, their steadfastness in the cause of God and of their country, and their triumphant opposition to all the powers of iniquity. "Time would fail me to tell of all the patriarchs, and prophets, and apostles, who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, out of weakness were made strong, and turned to flight the armies of the aliens." Look to the glorious band of martyrs, and to the innumerable multitudes who, in every succeeding age, have held fast their integrity, and, amid all the corruptions of the times, have been witnesses for virtue and for God. Contemplate the ardour of their zeal, the warmth of their beneficence, the firmness of their resolution, and their invincible attachment to their duty, and you will feel a portion of their spirit rising in your bosom. For why should we despair of attaining the perfection which they have reached before us? We endure no trials to which they were not exposed, and we possess the same means of resistance and of victory. They trembled, like us, in the days of their pilgrimage; like us, they maintained a double conflict with the powers of sin; they advanced to the combat in much weakness and fear; but they resolved to conquer, and have marked with their footsteps the path in which we are called to struggle and overcome. Behold them now, all their labours past, in quiet possession of the prize, with crowns of glory on their heads, and palms of victory in their hands, singing hallelujahs to Him who sitteth on the throne, and to the Lamb for ever. Animated by this glorious prospect, "lift up the hands which hang down;" meet with courage the difficulties of your trial; resolve to reach the perfection you contemplate; and let nothing seduce you from your steadfastness.

FINLAYSON.

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17. ON THE GENERAL FAST, 1803, WHEN THE EXPECTA

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TION OF INVASION WAS UNIVERSAL.

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In the mighty designs of Providence, the same valour which is called to defend our land, is the great means by which we can relieve the sufferings of the world around us. Amid that wreck which we have witnessed of social welfare-amid the dethronement of kings, and the subjugation of kingdoms, amid the trembling neutrality of some, and the silent servility of others,this country alone hath remained independent and undismayed, and it is upon the valour of our arms, that Europe now reposes its last hope of returning liberty and restored honour. Among the nations which surround us, whom either the force of the enemy has subdued, or their power intimidated, there is not one virtuous bosom that does not throb for our success,-the prayers of millions will follow our banners into the field, and the arm of the soldier will be blessed by innumerable voices, which can never reach his ear. If we fail,-if the ancient prowess and intrepidity of our people is gone,-there is then a long close to all the hopes and all the honours of humanity; over the fairest portion of the civilized earth the tide of military despotism will roll, and bury, in its sanguinary flood, alike the monuments of former greatness and the promises of future glory. But if we prevail; if the hearts of our people are exalted to the sublimity of the contest; the mighty spell which has enthralled the world will be broken, -the spirit of nature and of liberty will rekindle ;—and the same blow which prostrates the enemy of our land, will burst the fetters of nations, and set free the energies of an injured world.

The historian of future times, when he meditates on the affairs of men, will select for his fairest theme the record of our country; and he will say,-Such is the glory of nations when it is founded on virtue, when they scorn the vulgar "devices of the human heart," and follow only the "counsel of the Lord;" when they act from the high ambition of being the ministers of that "Ancient of Days," whose “judgment is set" in nature, and before whom the "books of the universe are open.” →

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There is yet, in such hours, a greater consideration.

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there be something inexpressibly animating in seeing our country as the instrument of Heaven in the restoration of happiness to mankind; if to us be given the sublime charge, of at once defending our own land, and guiding the destinies of human nature, there is something also equally solemn in the remembrance of the duties which so high a commission involves. And there is an instinct which must teach all, that of our conduct in these trying hours we are finally to render an account. It is this exalted prospect which ought ever to be present to us in the seasons of difficulty and alarm. It is now, in the midst of wars, and the desolation of nations, that we ought to fortify our hearts at the shrine of religion. It is now that we are to weigh the duties which are demanded of us by Heaven and earth; and to consider whether, in that last day, we are to appear as cowards to our country and our faith, and as purchasing an inglorious safety, by the sacrifice of every duty and every honour of man,- -or as the friends of order, of liberty, and of religion, and allied to those glorious spirits who have been the servants of God and the benefactors of mankind. Over the conflict which is to ensue, let it never be forgotten, that greater eyes than those of man will be present; and let every man that draws the sword of defence remember, that he is not only defending the liberties of his country, but the laws of his God.

Let, then, the young and the brave of our people go forth, with hearts inaccessible to fear, and undoubting of their cause. Let them look back into time, and see the shades of their ancestors rising before them, and exhorting them to the combat. Let them look around them, and see a subju gated world the witnesses of their contest and the partners in their success. Let them look forward into futurity, and see posterity prostrated before them, and all the honours and happiness of man dependent upon the firmness of their hearts and the vigour of their arms. Yes! let them go forth, and pour around our isle a living barrier to injustice and ambition; and, when that tide of anarchy which has overflowed the world rolls its last waves to our shores, let them show to the foe as impenetrable a front, as the rocks of our land to the storms of the ocean. ALISON.

18. THE PROMISES OF RELIGION TO THE YOUNG.

In every part of Scripture, it is remarkable with what singular tenderness the season of youth is always mentioned, and what hopes are afforded to the devotion of the young. It was at that age that God appeared unto Moses when he fed his flock in the desert, and called him to the command of his own people. It was at that age he visited the infant Samuel, while he ministered in the temple of the Lord, "in days when the word of the Lord was precious, and when there was no open vision." It was at that age that his spirit fell upon David, while he was yet the youngest of his father's sons, and when among the mountains of Bethlehem he fed his father's sheep.-It was at that age, also, "that they brought young children unto Christ that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said to them, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not, for of such is the kingdom of Heaven."

If these, then, are the effects and promises of youthful piety, rejoice, O young man, in thy youth!-rejoice in those days which are never to return, when religion comes to thee in all its charms, and when the God of nature reveals himself to thy soul, like the mild radiance of the morning sun, when he rises amid the blessings of a grateful world. If already Devotion hath taught thee her secret pleasures;-if, when Nature meets thee in all its magnificence or beauty, thy heart humbleth itself in adoration before the hand which made it, and rejoiceth in the contemplation of the wisdom by which it is maintained;—if, when Revelation unveils her mercies, and the Son of God comes forth to give peace and hope to fallen man, thine eye follows with astonishment the glories of his path, and pours at last over his cross those pious tears which it is a delight to shed; -if thy soul accompanieth him in his triumph over the grave, and entereth on the wings of faith into that heaven "where he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on High," and seeth the "society of angels and of the spirits of just men made perfect," and listeneth to the "everlasting song which is sung before the throne:"-If such are the meditations in which thy youthful hours are passed, renounce

not, for all that life can offer thee in exchange, these solitary joys. The world which is before thee, the world which thine imagination paints in such brightness,has no plea sures to bestow which can compare with these. And all that its boasted wisdom can produce has nothing so acceptable in the sight of Heaven, as this pure offering of thy infant soul.

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In these days," the Lord himself is thy shepherd, and thou dost not want. Amid the green pastures, and by the still waters" of youth, he now makes thy soul to repose." But the years draw nigh, when life shall call thee to its trials; the evil days are on the wing, when thou shalt say thou hast no pleasure in them ;" and, as thy steps advance, "the valley of the shadow of death opens," through which thou must pass at last. It is then thou shalt know what it is to "remember thy Creator in the days of thy youth." In these days of trial or of awe, "his spirit shall be with you," and thou shalt fear no ill; and, amid every evil which surrounds you, " he shall restore thy soul.-His goodness and mercy shall follow thee all the days of thy life;" and when at last "the silver cord is loosed, thy spirit shall return to the God who gave it, and thou shalt dwell in the house of the Lord for ever." ALISON.

19.- -ON AUTUMN.

LET the young go out, in these hours, under the descending sun of the year, into the fields of nature. Their hearts are now ardent with hope,-with the hopes of fame, of honour, or of happiness; and in the long perspective which is before them, their imagination creates a world where all may be enjoyed. Let the scenes which they now may witness moderate, but not extinguish their ambition-while they see the yearly desolation of nature, let them see it as the emblem of mortal hope :-while they feel the disproportion between the powers they possess and the time they are to be employed, let them carry their ambitious eye beyond the world ;—and while, in these sacred solitudes, a voice in their own bosom corresponds to the voice of decaying nature, let them take that high decision which becomes those who feel themselves the inhabitants of a greater world, and who look to a being incapable of decay.

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