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my being.” Because we have life or being from him, and are dependent on him for the support and continuance of it.

The outward comforts of life are also the fruits of God's favour. As it is of his


that we are not consumed for our unnumbered offences against him,, it is owing to the fame benignity that his mercies are renewed to us every morning, yea, every moment. His favour is the life of our enjoyments, the mercy of our lives. On his goodness our daily comforts depend. He not only redeemeth our life from destruction, but he crowneth us with lovingkindness and tender mercies. When we receive a benefit from a fellow-creature, we do not fix our attention on the hand that bestows it, and own our obligation to that; it is the kind disposition of our benefactor which affects us, and excites our gratitude. In like manner, the blessings of providence are to be received with thanksgiving, because they are the fruits of divine favour. That is the source of all our supplies, since by our offences against God we have forfeited every enjoyment. Let us. then pay our constant acknowledgments to him for them, and say with the grateful patriarch, “ I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies, and of all the truth, which thou hast shewed unto thy fervant."

We must still recollect the distinction already 05. served, between God's special favour to his own children, and that which is common to all men. As to the latter, it is extended to the good and the bad, the just and the unjust. " No man knoweth either love or hatred, by all that is before him. All things come alike to all, there is one event to the righteous and to the wicked; to the good and to the clean, and to the unclean; to him that facri. ficeth, and to him that sacrificeth not: As is the good, so is the finner; and he that sweareth, as he that feareth an oath.” God is good to all, and his tender mercies are over all his works. Even his ayowed enemies often partake largely of his bounty.

But let it be observed, that God's peculiar fae vour is infinitely better than alloutward and worldly enjoyments. There is so great a difference between these, that they will not bear a comparison.

Among the ancient heathen philosophers there were long disputations about the chief good of man, They bewildered themselves in endless inquiries, and were unable, after all their researches, to bring the matter to any satisfactory conclusion. But divine revelation determines the point at once. The chief good of man consists in the enjoyment of the divine favour. That alone constitutes his complete felicity. "There be many," says the Pfalmift,

" that

" that say, Who will shew us any good ? But, Lord, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us." Let us be assured of thy favour, and we ask no more. Let others make the best of what this world can afford;

Yea, let them stretch their arms like seas,

And grasp in all the shore;
Grant us the visits of thy face,

And we desire no more.

The favour of God is the spring and fountain of all favours; and without dispute, the original cause hath more in it than the effects. His favour is a full and plentiful inheritance, for he is the foun. tain of living waters, while created comforts are but broken cisterns, which can hold no water.

His favour alone can satisfy the boundless cravings of a rational and immortal foul. Created comforts cannot do it. This only gives folid peace and quietness to the otherwise restless mind, and affords full contentment to all its enlarged wishes. The Author of our being formed our souls for himself, and they will never be at rest till they centre in him. “ Hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness; I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David.K 3



The soul of man is spiritual in its nature, and therefore carnal and corporeal objects cannot be a suitable good for it. He is denominated a fooliflı man, who would say to his foul, “ Soul take thine ease, -thou haft goods laid up for many years." What were these goods to his soul? There is no proportion between earthly goods and the cravings of the soul. But the favour of God, the enjoyment of infinite excellence, is a suitable good for it. The sprinkling of the dew moistens the surface only of the grass and herbs of the field, but when God sends a plentiful rain to water his inheritance, the soil itself is saturized, and the parched ground drinks its fill, and is satisfied. It is thus with the soul when it is filled, as the apostle speaks, with all the fulness of God. A fpiritual good alone suits the nature of spiritual faculties and capacities.

The favour of God is to be desired for itself, as the ultimate object of our wishes. Created enjoya ments are only desirable for inferior ends. Bread is desirable to satisfy hunger, and physic for the recovery of health; but God is to be desired for what he is in himself, and the productions of his hand only in subordination to him. All created things must be referred to their great Original, as the efficient caufe and end of them. They may be considered as helps to a man in his journey, but


they are not the end to which his views should be directed.

The favour of God is an independent good. *The soul that enjoys it has enough to constitute its happiness in the absence of created objects. The felicity of the saints in heaven is not dependent on any thing external. The vision and enjoyment of God constitute all their bliss. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. He himself fhal} be with them, and be their God. This is the sum of their happiness. And thus it is, in an inferior degree, with holy souls on earth.

The favour of God is an infinite good. It can at once fill and satisfy millions and millions of the {pirits of good men made perfect in heaven, as well as faints on earth. The natural sun gives light only to one hemisphere at a time, but the light of God's countenance, in a glorious manner, diffuses celestial felicity through all the regions of paradise at the same period. All the blessed angels and saints above enjoy the full beams of God's favour, and the more distant rays of it gladden many hearts upon earth. That which fills and satisfies both heaven and earth at once, though in different proportions, must needs be infinite.

The favour of God is unmixed, pure, feet, like the pure river of the water of life, clear

and per


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