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of holiness, every other evidence of Christian character is invalidated. Here must be hatred of sin, as sin, which will lead to its abhorrence in every form, and a love of holiness as such, which will ensure the uniform and unwavering pursuit of it. Hence there will result an untiring effort to avoid temptation, and to live in communion with God. Here must be also an abiding love to Christians as such, and to all the precious interests of the church on earth. Here must be a supreme love to God, and a devotion of all we have and are to him. Here are principles which are operative, and adequate to reform the life and fit the soul for heaven.
The man who will perform religious duty only through respect to public sentiment, only to preserve his character, is entirely a worldly man. He who finds a relish in the pleasures and company of worldly men, which leads him to conform to their fashions and practices so far as he can without losing his standing in the church, is at heart a worldly man. He who, to save appearances, will abstain from indulgences in public, which he will cherish with warm and hearty gust in private, is strictly a sensual man. He who will not habitually bear himself in his own presence, and in the presence of God, with the same uprightness as before men, who does not fear the upbraiding of his owli conscience more than the public brand, who is not an honest man in his own heart, is a heartless man; and if he be in the church he is a heartless hypocrite.
The true Christian is such by a living principle of action incorporated by a divine energy with the immortal spirit of every renewed sin
It lives in the life of the soul, and burns as well amid polar ices as under a tropical sun, unchanged by the influence of other changes, inextinguishable even with life. In the bosom of the slave, the beggar, and the prince, it is identical. It bears the changes of prosperity and adversity, and is still the same. Place a true Christian on a desolate island, and he will be still a worshipper of God. That will be a place of prayer. Give him a solitary residence through eternity in any part of the universe, and there will be a soul happy and bright in its own glow of devotion, its fires of love.
The reason, then, of the Christian's hope stands first, on the clear proof which this faith furnishes of the true religion, established by prophecy and miracle, and adapted to the sinner's wants, actually effecting the moral renovation which all others have failed to do, and gaining brightness and strength amid the conflicts which have disproved and destroyed all other systems.
The reason for the personal hope which the Christian entertains, although it embraces many particulars, is here comprised in three specifications. He has known himself to be lost, has fled to Christ for salvation, and has actually found that a change of heart has resulted in a reformation of life. Brethren, have you this hope ? and is this the rea
If not, you are still lost, lost, LOST.
son of it?
Sicreotyped by F. F. Ripley,