Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

the former. It was from this new edition that the translation planned by Archbishop, Cranmer was afterwards formed. A copy of this was cut up into several parts, and these portions were sent to be corrected by the bishops, and other learned di. vipes, the whole to be afterwards examined by the Archbishop himself, at gap shot2. plass

..A SERMON. ;

9 2 Tim. ii. 19. Let every one that nameth the name of Christ, depart from

iniquity. .. We read that the end and purpose for which Jesus Christ gave himself for us, was "' that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.". It was therefore a thing to be expected, that he would lay upon his followers such a requirement as that contained in our text, viz, that every one, who hopes to partake the benefits of his passion, must abstain from every wicked and sinful course, and devote himself honestly and sincerely to the love and practice of all that is good.

You, my brethren, are among those who " name the name of Christ" you have been baptized into Christ's sacred name, and you profess his religion : I must therefore exhort you to depart from iniquity."

And first I would remark, that mere decency of character does not answer the exhortation before us. He who would profitably name the name of Christ, must do more than merely cleanse the outside of the cup or platter. He must advance from decency to strict and scriptural holiness : he must proceed from the outer to the inner man--from the outward action to the inward thought and desire.

[graphic]
[ocr errors]

It is not uncommon to find what are called décenit
people, with hearts as destitute of any feeling of
16 repentance towards God, and faith towards our
Lord Jesus Christ," as many who are much more
deeply sunk in vice.
. What then is meant by departing from iniquity?
If this exhortation were acted upon, it would cut
up by the roots all manner of wickedness, in deed,
word, and thought. If men were to act up to this
rule, there would be an end of those practices
which destroy the happiness of individuals, of fami-
lies, and of neighbourhoods; there would be an
end of tbat filthy and profane conversation which
so commonly shocks one's ears; there would be an
end of those impure and sinful thoughts and de-
sires, by which outward acts are first designed and
continued. We are required by the text, then, to
“ depart from iniquity,” in action, in word, and in
thought.
';: I. We must depart from iniquity in our actions.
: We read that the “wrath of God is revealed
from heaven against all ungodliness and unrigh-
teousness of men," " every soul of man that doeth
evil” shall receive “indignation and wrath, tribu-
lation, and anguish," as its eternal portion. Now,
what agreement can there be between these com-
mands, and an ungodly course of life? A man's
outward conduct is a book which is easily read and
understood, and which tells us decisively to whom
he belongs. While that is stained by disobedience
to the laws of God, we must know that the man
belongs not to Christ, for he is living in the prac-
tice of known sin : “ every one that nameth the
name of Christ” is to “ depart from iniquity," ..
· May the drunkard, the Sabbath-breaker, the pro-
fane gwearer, the neglecter of God's house and
worship think of this ! May the dishonest, the un-
chaste, the malicious, the revengeful, think of this !
May sinners of every name have their eyes opened

[ocr errors]

to see how completely this cuts off all their expec-
tations !.,.. .
: H. We must depart from iniquity in our words..

He who would comply with the exhortation in my text must be as careful to abstain from wicked conversation, as wicked actions. It is written, "* every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy: words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned;" Matt. xii. 36, 37. Again, If any, man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is yain," James i. 26. The religion of Christ forbids every particular kind of transgression in word. Profane oaths and an irreverent use of the name of God are forbidden in these passages. « Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain," (Third Commandment.) " Above all things, my brethren, swear not," James v. 12, Lying is thus condemned, " Lie not one to another," "Col. iii: 9. “ Putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neigh. bour," Eph. iv. 25. In regard to slander and evil speaking, the language of Scripture is equally strong. ** Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour,'' (Ninth Commandment.)“ Speak not evil one of another, brethren," James iv, 11. "Let all : bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice," Eph. iv. 31. “ He that uttereth a slander is a fool,” Prov. x. 18. Nor is filthy and obscene conversation less plainly forbidden. “ Let no: corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth--neither filthiness nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient," Eph. iv. 29, and v. A. ". Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt," Col. iv. 6. in

Though a man, then, may be able to say he is no drunkard, nor: Sabbath-breaker, nor cheat, nor

adulterer, yet if his conversation be stained by im purity, by oaths, by untruths, by slanderous, irreverent, and profane words, he has not departed from iniquity." .!. . ' .

II. We muet depart from iniquity in thought. - Christianity is a spiritual religion, and reaches the thoughts and intents of the heart. Actions and words proceed out of the mind; so that the most likely way to " depart from iniquity," in these respects, is to do in heart and thought.". Out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false-witness, blasphemies," Matt. xv. 19. Accordingly St. Paul speaks of Christians as “ bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ," 2 Cor. x, 5. Solomon exhorts, " Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life,“ Prov. iv. 23. Our Church also very properly prays to God to * cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of His Holy Spirit,” (Collect before Cominandments).

The cleansing of the thoughts from impurity affords the most convincing evidence that a man has the love of God in his heart-that his faith in Christ is sound, and that he is in earnest about the care of his soul. Worldly and unworthy motives may make a man watchful over his words and actions, but when he carefully watches those secret thoughts which are known only to himself and God, when he is anxious that no desire should be cherished in his heart which is offensive to the purity of the Almighty, he possesses the very best proof, that he is under the influence of real religious feeling.

My brethren, give this subject your serious con. "sideration. You either are, or are not, departing from iniquity in the several respects just mentioned. Which of the two you are doing, is a question which involves your eternal destiny. Be not deceived.

If sin reign unsubdued in out mortal body, we are none of Christ's, our religion is not that which the Gospel teaches, and our sentence at the last great day will be, “ depart from me, ye workers of iniquity." ;

Christians !.« see that ye hate the thing that is evil.” Depart from iniquity in thought, word, and deed. , “ Walk worthy of the vocation wherewith Je are called.” . Follow after righteousness, god. liness, faith, love, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith. Lay hold on eternal life.”

Remember the Sabbath-day, to keep it holy.” * Forsake not the assembling of yourselves together, as the manner of some is.” Worship God “ in spirit and in truth." “ Search the Scriptures." Frequent the Lord's table. « Continue instant in prayer.” 66 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.” Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things." .

. A LANCASHIRE CURATE.

· ON PRÚDENCE IN RESISTING EXPENSIVE ' . ..... AMUSEMENTS. .. To the Editor of the Cottager's Monthly Visitor:

Sir, I HAVE so much respect for you in regard to your efforts to make the lower orders of the people happy and comfortable, that I dare venture to address you on a subject, which you may not consider as applicable to them only; but may be useful to per

« ZurückWeiter »