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a counfel to all children,' " My fon hear the inftruction of thy father, and forfake not the law of thy mother, for they shall be an ornament of grace unto thine head and chains about "thy neck." What an encouragement to parents, to feel their children willing to learn how they fhould acquire knowledge common, civil and divine. If they depart before them, how cheerfully fhould they with fweet refignation commit them to the arms of Jefus. If parents fhould die first, with what hopes may they leave them behind, in the comfortable expectation, that after they have ferved their generation according to the will of God they will meet with them in glory. But whether they live or die, or their parents live or die, how pleafing the thought, that all are and will be with God. Wherefore, my dearly beloved children and youth, the hope of the church and the hope of the world, allow me to entreat you by the love of your parents and by the mercies of God, that you liften. "to the inftruction of your father, and give heed to the law "of thy mother."
Fifthly, another part of dutifulness is, patiently to submit to the correction of your parents. This is one of the most reluctant and painful duties of children. But, my dear little ones, it is neceffary for your comfort, ufefulaefs and happiness. The directions of heaven are wisdom. God enjoins the meafure, and often the recipient of the fcourge is lefs afflicted than the administrator. O that it could be impreffed upon your infant minds, that the parents must hate you who correct you not for your faults. This is nature, reafon and feripture, and riper years will blefs God for the feverity. Can there be a child fo loft in unnatural affection as to wifh his parents fhould hate and abhor him. But the father who correcteth not his child is confidered by infinite wifdom as a hater of him. Hear ken to the heavenly adjudication. "He that fpareth the rod "hateth his fon, but he that loveth him chafteneth him by"times. Foolifhnefs is bound up in the heart of a child, but
"the rod of correction will drive it far from him. Withhold "not correction from the child, for if thou beateft him with a "rod, he shall not die; thou fhalt beat him with a rod and "deliver his foul from hell. Chaften thy fon while there is
hope, and let not thy foul fpare for his crying." O that children could be induced to confider, that correction appointed by God, however painful to themselves and parents, is for their higheft ufe and benefit,
Sixthly, another branch of this dutifulness is, that children fhould only afficiate, and make intimates and companions of thole, who are agreeable to their parents choice. Bad company to youth is the greatest evil in fociety. All the confeffions of criminals brought to a shameful end, principally confift of three articles, difobedience to parents, wicked company, and fabbath breaking. Evil company is the deftruction of youth. Other things fy their thoufands, but this its ten thousands. Ruft corrodes the most polifhed steel, fo evil communication Let not children enter into the corrupts good manners. fecrets of the wick, and let not their honor be united with them. It is impoffible to detail all the duties of the filial relation; let this clofe the collection. Imitate your parents in all that is good, avoid every thing in them wrong, pray for them, pray for yourselves, dedicate yourfelves to God in Chrift, renounce fin, and engage to walk in faith and holiness, then you will be useful in the world and happy forever.
The fubje&t clofs with the laft advice of ministerial and the whole foul of parental counsel. "Be ye followers of God as "dear children, and walk in love, as Chrift hath alfo loved "you." Remember and imitate the character of the child Samuel, who grew up in favor with God and man,
Some Duties Incumbent upon Youth.
Ecclefi. xii. 1. 2.
Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy Youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt fay, I have no pleasure in them; while the fun, or the light, or the moon, or the fiars be not darkened, nor the clouds return after the rain.
NO addrefs in facred writ is more directly pointed, or more folemnly made to the rifing generation, than the words before It was the laft counsel of an old man, and this, and a few following difcourfes, are the laft perhaps, you will ever hear from your aged paftor. Allow me to take for my copy at prefent, the laft addrefs of one of the oldeft and wifeft preachers. This counfel is directed to those in the morning and bloom of life, whose active and volitile fpirits bear them on to the gratification of every defire.
This addrefs in our text, burfts forth in a very abrupt form, delivers a ftrong interference with the views and pleafures of
Solomon had defcribed every worldly wifa and carnal defire of his, as fully gratified. He had enjoyed the full round of riches, pleasures and honors, as far as this narrow life could afford indulgence. He was the perfon fingled out and defignated by God, for this wonderful fcene. No ma nmarked out for the full extenfion of earthly pleasures, but himself; none in this line ever preceded him, nor will there be fuch another inftance to the end of time. Every thing that can be comprehended in the term pleasure, Solomon enjoyed in the utmost extent. Peace, health, riches, honors, and the utmoft gratification of human defires were all his own. No carnal man can poffibly wish for more than Solomon poffeffed. When he became old, and was glutted with enjoyment, what was his account of the whole? A fum which he might have caft up long before. Hearken to the footing of his account. "Vanity of vanities all is vanity and vexation of fpirit." Vanity and vexation, what can form a more bitter and detefta ble compofition for life than this? This was Solomon's portion, when he drunk in pleasure in all its fulness, what then must be the misery of thofe who only fip at the rills, and never had a fingle draft of his delight. And all the pleasurable taking world may be affured they never will. A fermon could not develope the pleasures of Solomon in childhood, youth and riper age, and the miferies and torment of his last days. If I fhould live, my young friends, I would wish to lead you through this ex.
yous. In this fudden impulfe, confifts much of its ftrength, beauty, and vigor. It feems intended to ftorm the attention, and command the most thoughtlefs to take notice. Young people muft furely feel the fpirit and power of this addrefs. It is pointed like a dagger to the finful pleasures of the hearts of youth. It strikes death into their carnal delights, and raises their hearts, contrary to their native bent, from earth to heaven, sheds darkness on terrestrial things, and elevates their fouls to God.
traordinary life of pleafure and fin, and of wisdom and folly of which there has been none like it, nor will there be another. Forgive me this excurfion and deviation from the fubject in view. You are ready to fay, that all old men will. pafs the fame reflections on life, and make a fimilar regret, that they have paffed through the world under a kind of enchantment, which the approaches of death diffolve, and they awake to think of God and religion when their heart ftrings are breaking. I readily grant death is an awakening period,, and I alfo affirm the whole life is little enough to prepare for it. The young and gay will laugh at every thing ferious, and will fay, the religious language of the aged, is the refult of chagrin, difappointment, or furfeited repitition of enjoyments. To fuch, I can only fay, "Take the unhappy reins on your necks, range through the fields of pleasure, tafte of every forbidden tree, enjoy yourselves, abandon religion, banish death, heaven, eternity, and hell from your thoughts, and forbid their intrufion to mar your pleasures; finish life in a thoughtless and jovial fwing" but, O youth, be affured of this, "God will bring "you into judgment." This thought is excluded in the hours of mirth and lawless pleasures, but hereafter it will bite like an adder and fting like a ferpent. I wifh this one idea could be impreffed on the hearts of youth, "Remember that all your conduct in life, and every period of its pleafures God will bring into judgment in the prefence of the whole universe."
The great things enjoined upon youth in this fubject is the plain duty of remembrance of God and feveral reasons to enforce their compliance with it.
The duty is to remember their Creator, and immediately to perform every matter and thing implied in this remembrance. The original word is Creators, strongly intimating a Trinity of perfons in the Godhead to which their attention should be turned; they should remember the Father their maker, the Son