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is pressing me down, and that is saddest of all. He doth not give the wonted communication of his grace, nor strength to mount; thought I had habitual grace, that will not do, I must have auxiliary grace.

ANSWER. It may be, when you got additional grace at the last communion, you have sinned it away; and no wonder, when you turn the grace of God into wantonness, that the Lord make you go empty-handed. But again, he may do this to let you see that habitual grace is not sufficient, in order to your mounting up to heaven, without actual grace: "It is not of him that willeth, nor of him runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy." However, know that God is a sovereign God, and he will let you know that he is so, by giving you new supplies of grace, and withdrawing them again when he pleases; but wait on him, and you shall renew your strength.


OBJECT. "But, oh! how can I mount, when he not only denies his grace, but HIDES his face from me? The eagle mounts towards the body of the sun, but my Sun is covered with a cloud, and I go mourning without the Sun. A daybird cannot fly in the night; and alas! how should I mount in the dark night of desertion?'

ANSWER. It may be, you have hid your face from God, and that makes him hide his face from you. You have sinned away his presence, by turning away from his presence; or, perhaps, God doth this for the trial of your faith, love, and patience. However it be, you must exercise your wings of faith and love. and mount up notwithstanding that you be in the dark: "Who is among you that feareth the Lord, and obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? Let him trust in the name of the Lord, and stay himself upon his God." (Isa. 1. 10.) The spouse was busy even when Christ was gone: "Saw ye him whom my soul loveth?"

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OBJECT. "Oh! but how can I mount, when he is not only an absent, but an angry God; I see nothing but surly looks in his countenance; and he is shooting arrows against me; yea, His arrows stick fast in me, and his hand presses me sore;' when I mount up, he shoots me down with his arrows: For the arrows of the Almighty are within me;' and when my wings are wounded, down I fall.”

ANSWER. God may do so to humble you. You must be humbled; and the more humble and low you are, the

higher you shall be advanced, and mount up the higher after your humilation; never was the believer highest, than after he was lowest : " Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up;" (James iv. 10;) and remember how you may meet with barbed arrows, poisoned arrows of God's anger, and yet all in love: "In a little wrath have I hid myself from thee for a moment; but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy upon thee." (Isa. liv. 10.) "For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed, but my kindness shall not depart from thee." You shall at last find all these things well ordered. What think you when you shall come to heaven, and Christ say to you, Welcome, believer, when I hid my face, did I not deal kindly with you? When I shot the arrows into your heart, did I not deal kindly with you?" And the believer will then say, "Indeed, Lord, thou hast done all things well. All is well that ends well."


OBJECT. "Alas! but I think the Lord will kill me with his arrows; and will I fly to heaven if he kill me?"

ANSW. There is no fear that your kind Lord will kill you; but though he should, yet make use of your wings, and fly to him, as Job, " Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him.' I read of a sparrow that, when pursued by a hawk, flew into Xenocrates' bosom, his words were, Ñon oportes supplicem prodere: "It were barbarous to betray a poor supplicant." If you fly to God's bosom, no fear that he will kill you. When his wrath pursues you, he is but chasing you into his bosom; therefore let nothing hinder you from mounting.

The Lord himself engaged you to wait on him, that you may renew your strength, and mount up on wings as eagles.

The following two sentences have been altered by the Editor: For "O, then, do not tempt Christ by lying still in your sins and unbelief when you should be mounting." P. 21.


And it is perhaps now or never, O young sinner, old sinner; your mounting time with you may be gone before you get another call." P. 23.

Sermon 2.



"For I will not leave thee until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of."-GEN. Xxviii. 15.

Ar the last sacramental solemnity of this sort, I spoke a little upon the great plea and prayer of faith upon the divine promise, in the words of David, "Lord, do as thou hast said." (2 Sam. vii. 25.) We may now look upon this text that I have read as the gracious answer of God to that prayer of faith, in the words of the great God himself to Jacob, "I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of;" or, "till I have done as I have said."

What God said once to Joshua, "I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee," (Chap. i. 5,) even so, what God said to Jacob here, doth equally belong to all believers in Christ: "I will not leave thee, till I have done that which I have spoken to thee of." Hath God condescended to speak to you, and caused you to hope in his word of grace or promise, at this or any former occasion? Here is good news to take away with you, that the promising God will in due time be a performing God; and that you may not think long, and weary or faint in your mind, apprehending what a weary time it may be between the promise and the performance, here is supporting encouragement in the mean time: "I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of." What I have said I will do, and will not leave thee till I have done it.

In the preceding part of this chapter you find Jacob was forced to flee from his father's house, upon the account of the wrath of his brother Esau; he is hastened away to Pa

* Preached on a thanksgiving day, immediately after the celebration of the Lord's Supper at Abbott's Hall, Oct. 22, 1733.

danaram, and on his way he comes to Luz, which afterwards, on the account of a notable emergency, was called Bethel, where God signally appeared and discovered him-self to him in great glory, suitably to his strait. Here he was benighted, (ver. 11,) and was obliged to lie in the open field. Some of the saints and servants of God have been put to great hardships, through the violence and rage of their persecuting brethren. But though Jacob's bed was hard, yet his rest was sweet; while he had a hard pillow of stone under his head, the Lord appeared to him in a dream and spake comfortably to him. God's time of speaking comfort to his people is readily when they are most destitute of other comforts; then he is most kind, when brethren come to be most unkind.

You may observe two things; first, what God showed to Jacob; and then, what he said to him.

1. What he showed to him. He manifested to him his glory, as the God of providence, and the God of grace in Christ, who is here represented to him by the ladder reaching from heaven to earth; (ver. 12;) and all the intercourse between heaven and earth is by this ladder.

2. What he spake to him: "And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set upon the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven; and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it." (Ver. 13.) As the vision was suitable to his present case, letting him understand that he had a good guide and a good guard, not only the angels of God, but the Lord of angels, so that the words that God spake to him were suitable to his present need. The Lord spake from the top of the ladder; for all the glad tidings we receive from heaven come through Jesus Christ. Here are former promises made to Abraham and Isaac, his father and grandfather, repeated and ratified to Jacob; whereby God intimated that he would be the same to him that he had been to them. Here are fresh promises made to him suited to his present condition. He was to leave his kindred, and to want their presence; God promised to be present with him: "I am with thee." He was in the fear of Esau; God promised, saying, "I will keep thee." He was journeying to an unknown place; God promised to keep him in all places whithersoever he went. He was apprehensive he would never see his own country again; God promised he would bring him again to that land. He

seemed to be left of all his friends and relations; God promised, saying, "I will not leave thee." Providence seemed to cross the promise, while he is thus going as an exile to a place far distant; God assures him of the performance of all he had said, in due season: "I will not leave thee, till I have done that which I have spoken to thee of." When God speaks to his people, he speaks to the point; he speaks to the case; his words are suited to their present exigences; and not only so, but to their future straits also. Jacob knew not, but God knew and foresaw what hardships he would meet with in his uncle Laban's service; and in a suitableness to the event that was to take place, he assures him saying, "I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of." This was such a gracious manifestation, and such a wonderful intercourse that God had with Jacob, as obliged Jacob to put a remark upon the place, and call it Bethel, the house of God, the gate of heaven.

The text is not so much a new promise, as a repeated confirmation of what he had before promised, for the establishing and the fortifying of Jacob's faith; for, says God, "I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of." Where we may observe two things.

1. A confirming word concerning the issue, or what he would bring out of these promises; that they shall not be mere sayings, but doings: "I will do what I have spoken to thee of." Have I said it, and will I not do it? "In the end the vision shall speak.'


2. A supporting word in the interim, that faith may not faint in the meantime before the accomplishment come, "I will not leave thee, until I have done it." Jacob might think, Alas! it may be a long time between the promise now made, and the accomplishment of it. What will become of me in the meantime? And, indeed, he had dark days and hard service before his hand; and there was a long twenty years between the Bethel visit here, where he met with God, and God spake to him in this manner, and the Peniel visit, when he wrestled with God and prevailed, and when God came to do for him some of the great things he had here spoken to him of. And in that interval of twenty years, between Bethel and Peniel, many vicissitudes and changes, trials and difficulties, occurred in Jacob's lot; but, for his support in the meantime, God assures him that he

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