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eft year that ever you lived. Happy state indeed! to be reconciled to God, and to be the objects of his favour and love, to be the care of his indulgent providence, and to have all things working together for your good, Happy is the people that is in fuch a cafe, yea happy is that people whofe God is the Lord! What fay you then, once more? this may perhaps be the last time that your consent shall ever be asked are you now willing to be espoused to Christ? will you take him upon his own terms? if fo, he will take you upon his own gracious propofals: and then this will be a day much to be remembred; Christ will remember this kindness of your youth, and will never forget the love of your efpoufals. But if you refufe, then know
3.) That he will remember the unkindness of your youth and he will remember it against you as a grievous aggravation of your guilt another day, that he called and ye refufed; he wooed you to be efpoused to him, and ye would not. If God fhould give you grace to repent hereafter, yet then, the remembrance of his flighted mercy will certainly be very bitter to you: but if not, you will hear of this with terrour another day, and in another world. O! how will you look Chrift your judge in the face! With what face can you ask for his mercy then! How will you be confounded to remember, what you will not be able to forget, that once
there was a time when Christ was wooing you to become his, and was offering to become yours, but you would not! And what must be the confequence of this! Why certainly it will be, that he who now wooes you to be espoused to him, will then fay to you, I never knew you, Depart from me ye curfed into everlasting fire, prepared for the Devil and his Angels.
Thus I have finifhed my difcourfe to you; all that I can do further, is to pray for a bleffing upon it. "O bleffed Jesus!
whofe grace alone can effectually win any "foul to be espoused to thy felf; follow thy "word with thy powerful bleffing, and make "this to be a day of joy, in heaven and on "earth, over fome finner that repenteth."
Religious friendship; or, young perfons directed in the choice of their companions.
I am a companion of all them that fear thee, and of them that keep thy precepts.
NE needs not look back to the preceeding verfes, in order to fettle the
fenfe of our text, nor confult the context to see the connection; for this Pfalm confifts, for the moft part, of independent fentences: every verfe, almoft, is an intire propofition of it felf, which neither wants, nor admits of any light from what goes before or follows it; only thus far there is a connection through the whole Pfalm, that every part, and every verse of it fuits the general defign, which is a pious meditation on the excellency of God's law, and the happiness of those that keep it; and this is intermixed with fundry petitions
petitions fuitable to such a subject. Here the Pfalmift confiders, and describes that facred regard which a good man bears to the law of God; as it is varioufly exprefs'd, by his loving it, meditating upon it, delighting in the study of it, and endeavouring, with all his care, to keep it, and practife according to it. Again, in this Pfalm, he views the law of God in different lights, as it many ways tends to make a man good and happy, both here and hereafter it is a lamp to his feet, and a light to his paths, guiding loft finners in the way to eternal bleffednefs: it affords a good man fupport and comfort in this pilgrimage ftate, and helps to prepare him for a future and eternal bleffedness. So great was the pious Pfalmift's love to the law of God, that he loved all who kept it, and chofe fuch perfons only for his companions and friends; as he declares in our text, I am a companion of all them that fear thee, and of them that keep thy precepts..
The right choice of companions and friends, efpecially of fuch as we make our felves intimate, and familiar with, is, to be fure, a matter of great importance, both to the civil and religious life and, I reckon, it is fo, more efpecially, to young perfons, who are apt to run into greater intimacies with their friends, and to make them more their confidents, than old people, who are, ufually, more cautious and wary. And befides younger minds are, generally fpeaking, more
eafily imprefs'd, and more ready to receive a tang of the company they keep, than others, whofe judgment and practice is more fettled by long use and experience. It is a common faying, You may know a man by his company; because the company we keep, and affociate much with, is very apt to form us into a likenefs to them. Bad company is therefore extremely dangerous, according to that old observation of a heathen poet, which the Apoftle Paul has adopted into one of his divine epiftles, Evil communications corrupt good manners, 1 Cor. xv. 33. and it is more especially dangerous to young perfons, who are the apteft of all others to be imprefs'd and spoil'd by them. On the other hand, there are great advantages to be reaped from good company. Such friends and affociates in life, as the Pfalmist fpeaks of in our text, even fober and religious perfons, may be many ways a blesfing to us, both with refpect to our prefent and future welfare.
As I have intended this fermon chiefly for the benefit of young perfons, I would hope, it may be a useful piece of fervice to them, to handle this fubject; and to give them fome directions about the choice of their companions.
I am a companion of all them that fear thee, fays David in our text; he looked upon all fuch perfons as his friends, and the companions of his pilgrimage: and no doubt but of