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beggar, and has the same end. “ Dust he is to dust he returns !”
Thus dies the Christian Dives, and thus is buried: - he sleeps the common sleep of nature :-And thus slept the Jewish Dives in the sepulchre of his tribe -- but he awoke'in the flames of hell!—In the flames of hell?-Alas, wretched man! where was the atrocity of his guilt ?—Was there some secret,desperatesin, unknown to the world, indulged, persisted in, unrepented !--some damning offence, to which no one was privy, but God and his own soul?—No such“sin unto death” appears. He was only, what thousands are in all times,-a man of the earth,-a disciple of the world.--He did not know himself ; he had never communed with his own heart; he had received and welcomed a
spirit of slumber"— he had closed his eyes, that he should not see, what he might have seen by the light of nature ; he had shut his ears, that he should not hear, what he ought to have learned from Moses and the prophets; he had therefore lived worthless and reckless, and died as he had lived, having “ the form of godliness," for he was in the communion of the Jewish Church, “but denying the power,” for the spirit of the law had no place in his mind.
Son, remember!"-replied the common progenitor of this envied child of prosperity and the despised offspring of want --“remember that thou in thy life time receivedst thy good things,”—the things thou didst esteem supremely good.—The Patriarch does not recall to his memory any atheistical contempt of God and his ordinances, or any unprincipled violation of the rights of humanity. Here is no accusation of such enormous crimes, as are commonly admitted to be worthy of death ;-avarice, wringing from the hard hand of poverty its little all; --lust, deceiving, corrupting, and then abandoning innocence;—bestial drunkenness,—unnatural lewdness,-midnight murder. The worldly man is only referred to his worldly life, his deliberate choice of things temporal: the appointed consequences of which he might have foreseen, and the penalty of which he must now be content to suffer ;—the dreadful penalty which God has annexed to unprofitableness,—to the abuse of his gifts, the neglect of talents, the irreligion of the heart, the unrighteousness of living to himself alone.
“I am tormented in this flame.” Is, then, the feeble-minded and thoughtless voluptuary, or the negligent and useless servant, placed on a level with the most detestable and atrocious of mankind ? Must the unthrifty steward, and the slothful hireling, undergo the same horrible fate, which awaits the determined libertine, and the sanguinary tyrant ?—the unrepenting adulterer, who betrays the confidence of friendship, and bursts the bonds of connubial union,-an the royal assassin, who has trampled down nations, sacrificed friends and foes, and waded to the throne through seas of blood ? Are all who are excluded from the “bosom of Abraham," from the “ rest of the people of God,” thrown, an undistinguished prey, to “the worm that dieth not, and the fire that is not quenched ?”—I say not so. -As in our heavenly “ Father's house are many mansions” of felicity, so are there, in the house of woe, many cells of wretchedness: Some are “ beaten with few, some with many stripes.” As various degrees of glory and honour are reserved for the chosen, in the regions of peace, so, doubtless, various degrees of sorrow and suffering are inflicted on the reprobate, in the caverns of misery. In what proportion, and to what extent, it is not for us to determine; but surely, in the least degree, sufficient to alarm and stimulate the culprit to repentance, who is, in any way, obnoxious to Divine displeasure. The servant who only hid his talent,—the guest unfurnished with a wedding-garment,—were “cast into outer darkness,"-darkness, where " there is weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
Son !-Christian !remember !_“in thy lifetime”-remember!—before thou art called upon, to recollect the abuse of thy talents, in the place of torment. Remember! while thy faculties are yet unimpaired, and there is yet space to think and to act: look back on the days that are past; review the frolics of youth, and the pursuits of manhood; trace the motives by which thou wast determined, and become acquainted with thyself,--thy leading inclinations, thy favourite follies, thy habitual vices,—and “hide not thyself from thy own” spirit. Remember that we are responsible to that unseen and allknowing God, who placed us here, and appointed this earth to be a state of moral discipline and improvement. Of the future world, the scene of reward or of punishment, little can be known; but enough to urge you to “give all diligence to make your calling sure,” and “work out your salvation with fear and trembling."
Here, much is to be done, but not more than every man can do, if he sets himself in earnest to the great labour, and avails himself of all his means of grace. Remember, that, whatever be your birth, or station in society, we are all brethren; and must “ love as brethren, be pitiful, and courteous.” If you have inherited or acquired wealth, recollect that you are but the dispenser of the bounty of our common Father. When “thy sheep, and thy oxen, and thy fatlings are killed,” “ call not thy rich neighbours, lest they bid thee again, and a recompense be made thee,” but admit “ the poor, the maimed, and the blind.” Let not the beggar lie unregarded at thy door, but, if he be not worthless and idle, let him approach thine hall, “pour oil into his wounds, and soothe him with words of condescension and looks of kindness. If thy lot is cast in humble life, and thou hast little to impart, “visit the widow and fatherless in their affliction," comfort, the broken-hearted, smooth the pillow of age, and administer “the cup of cold water," if thou canst do no more, to the wretch in whose veins the fever rages. Let “God be in all your thoughts”—be thankful for your daily food, your nightly rest, your knowledge of the Gospel, your