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of angels, yourselves like the angels of God in heaven; when you shall associate with the spirits of just men made perfect, yourselves perfect as they are; when you shall add your voices to the celestial choir, in singing the song of Moses and the Lamb;" when you shall see the face of God without dying, and hear his voice without quaking for fear. “Now unto Him that loves us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen."
END OF THE FIRST COURSE OF LECTURES.
Be nøt now therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel, according to the power of God; who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began; but is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour. Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. 2 TIMOTHY I. 8, 9, 10.
EVERY dispensațion of the divine Providence seems to be the basis and the preparation of a farther display of wisdom and goodness. The last discovered purpose of the Eternal Mind, is the continuation, the extension and the improvement of that which immediately preceded it; and the glory hitherto displayed in the ways and works of God, however excellent, is hastening to lose itself in " a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory" yet to be revealed. Periods of immeasurable, incomprehensible duration had flowed before this fair and majestic frame of nature was called into existence. For we read of a purpose of grace formed and given “before the world began,” and of " a kingdom prepared from the foundation of the
world;" of an election made, and of “eternal life
promised, of God who cannot lie, before the foundation of the world.” Who can tell what systems have preceded that which now exists? We know from scripture that one more glorious is to succeed it. “ According to his promise, we look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness,” 2 Peter iii. 13. And who can tell what future systems may arise in endless progression? As well might the fluttering insect, which was born in the morning, and perishes at night, presume to dive into the ages beyond the flood, or with bold adventurous wing attempt to soar into the heaven of heavens, and declare the wonders of the world of spirits.
But though system may succeed system, though dis. pensations change, one thing is immutable, “ the gracious purpose of Him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will.” One great object was kept in view before the world began, is still kept in view through the whole extent of its duration, and is to be pursued through the endless ages of eternity. Do you need, christian, to be told what it is? The salvation of the world by Christ Jesus. It is a little thing to say, that Abraham saw his day afar off: that of him Moses wrote, Isaiah prophecied, David sung and Paul preached. “These things the angels desire to look into.” On this exalted theme the everlasting counsels of peace revolved; to mature them, the powers
of heaven and earth were shaken; and to bring them to their consummation, a new creation shall expand infinite space, and a succession of ages that are never, never to expire. Placed at whatever point in this immense sphere, our eyes are still attracted to the glorious Centre, from which all light and life and joy issue, and in whose light every inferior orb revolves and shines.
The epistle of the great apostle of the Gentiles from which I have taken the subject of this Discourse, is