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displeasing to him; how he is thereby dishonoured, and robbed of his glory, that is due to his name; how he is angry with the generation; and what signs of his wrath do appear, Pfal. lxix. 9. Hab. ii. 16. Matth. xvi. 3. God is the Governor of the world, and he is not an idle spectator of that which men do on earth : fince he looks to us, let us look up to him,
3. He must look within him, and behold what untowardness is within his own heart, and appears in his own life and way, If. vi. 5. Never man fhall save himself from an untoward generation, that does not begin here. Here he must look, and behold how he is in danger of being led aside into the way of the untoward generation, by reason of the blindness of mind, and untowardness of heart and affections within his own breast.
More particularly, if you would save yourselves: from an untoward generation,
1. Return unto God by Jesus Christ, in the way of the everlasting covenant held out to you in the gospel: For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God soall call, Acts ii. 39. Be no longer stiffnecked, but yield yourselves to the Lord. Take salvation closely to heart now at length, and enter into the covenant, ye that are yet strangers to Christ. And renew your covenant, ye
the friends of Christ, give a new folemn consent to the marriage-covenant betwixt Christ and your souls. And I would advise both to do this, with a particular view to your being saved from this untoward generation. Sirs, we seem to be entering into a cloud, and darkness seems to be coming on: take hold of Christ for your guide in time, left ye be wrapt up in the cloud without a guide, and there be a fad account of you, and such as you are, ere the darkness be over.
2. Endeavour close walking with God in your perfonal capacity, as did Noah, Gen. vi. 9. forecited. Strive to be acquainted with religion in the life and
power of it on your own souls. In a dark and cloudy day upon the church, it is hard to keep fast an unfelt religion. When the winds of error and delusion are left to blow, the earth, sea, and trees, there is a fad account of them, Rev. vii. 3. And in a time of common calamity, one that cannot live by faith, will find it hard to live.
3. Beware of and stand at a distance from the finful ways and courses of the untoward generation : Eph. v. 11. Have no fellow bip with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. They that will partake of their sins, must lay their account to partake of their plagues also, when God riseth up to plead his controversy. Let it not encourage you to fin, that you see others generally take a liberty to themselves that way; for by that means you enter into the confpiracy against God with the multitude, and shall smart with them. If ever you save yourselves from this untoward generation, you will be instructed of God as he was, that he sbould not walk in the way of this people, If. viii. 11.
4. Mourn over the fins of the untoward generation, as well as over your own, otherwise ye are not free of them, Ezek. ix. 4. forecited. Pfal. cxix. 136. Rivers of waters run down mine eyes, said David; because they (the wicked) keep not thy law. Alas! this public spirit is much gone in our day. God is dishonoured, his name is profaned, his ways, truths, and ordinances are trampled upon by an untoward generation; and we stand by as unconcerned spectators, or else join in the affronting of him. Ah! is God our Father? is Christ our elder brother ? are we on Heaven's side? and can we be thus hale-hearted in such a case ?
5. Lastly, Take home Zion's case into your own foul; and be concerned how it shall fare with the church and interest of Christ in this untoward generation. There has been much contending in Scotland even unto blood for all the parts of our covenanted reformation. Few of that generation are to the fore now; but we are arisen a new generation that knew not Joseph, and it is like to go to wreck among our hands. Apd it is much to be lamented, that profeffors generally are very easy and secure upon the matter. They see not the danger, they perceive not the weight of the thing, and they will not inquire into it. And hence no wonder, that they are not employed to wrestle with God upon it. But this is a day, that calls you to bestir ygurselves on Zion's behalf, and inquire into and inform yourselves of her trưę interests, and the weight of them which are at stake; left ye lay yourselves open to that, Amos vi. 1. Wo to them that are at ease in Zion. Our Lord takes notice how men carry themselves in a time of his interek finking, and will see to it himself in due time; but their case is dangerous who stand aloof from it, according to what Mordecai told Efther, chap. iv. 14. For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then sball there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place, but thou and thy father's house fball be destroyed.
HI. I shall conclude with some motives to stir
you up to save yourselves from this untoward generation.
1. The danger of this untoward generation is very great; Amos iii. 2. You only have I known of all the families of the earth : therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities. For the debt of fin they have entered heirs to, the breach of covenant with God, the blood of the faints, and apoftasy of the late times, is very great and hainous. The multiplied causes of God's controversy, since the Lord returned the captivity of this church, are very many and of a deep die.' And the stroke has been long threatened, and of divers kinds, sword, famine, and pestilence. So that, in the ordinary course of providence it cannot miss to be of extreme weight when it comes. 2. It seems to be making haste, and to be very
near, Deut. xxxii. 35. Their foot shall side in due time : for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that shall come upon them make hafte. For we see that God is risen up from his place, to punish the nations for their iniquity, in the pestilence that has so long raged abroad. It is time for us to beftir ourselves to save ourselves from this untoward generation, when our neighbours house is on fire. Besides, this untoward generation are visibly mending their pace in departing from God, and are making still quicker and quicker dispatch in filling up the cup of our iniquity. And as natural motions increase the more, the nearer they draw to the centre; fo the nearer nations are to the fatal day of wrath, they make the greater speed in pulling it down on themselves. And finally, our divisions speak it to be fo: A house divided against itself cannot stand.
3. Lastly, Now is the time to save yourselves. God is yet on a throne of grace. He is calling to gou, however far ye have gone on with the untoward generation, now to save yourselves from this untó. ward generation.
Israel's Sin and Judgement, with regard
to abused Mercies, defcribed.
S E R M
Preached at ETTRICK, November 7. 1725.
HOSEA ii. 8. 9. For fhe did not know that I gave her corn, and wine,
and oil, and multiplied her silver and gold, which they prepared for Baal. Therefore will I return, and take away my corn in the time thereof, and my wine in the season thereof, and will recover my wool and my flax given to cover her nakedness.
N these words we have Israel's fin and judge
ment. 1. lfrael's fin, want of knowledge; a fin, though but a want.
Men must reckon to God for the gifts and graces they want, which they are obliged to have, and may have. A heart-fin: the fins of the heart, as well as those of the life, are ruining; and a dark heart, as well as a heart rebelling against the light, is dangerous. In Ifrael's sin observe two things.
1. The object they did not know. In a word, the divine bounty. God had been very kind to them, but they had taken no knowledge of all his kindness: they were more brutish than the ox or ass, lf. i. 3. Observe,
(1.) The good things he had furnished them with; and first for the body. [1.] Neceffaries, corn, whereof their bread was made, usually put for all neceffa