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This is necessary to be believ'd, and much thought on, That we live in the Family, and under the Command, and are maintain’d and fed by the Providence of GOD. And that, as there is such a Lord, whose we are, on whom we depend, and whom we are to serve according to his Will; so, for our Comfort and Encouragement, we serve a Master who is infinitely Rich, and, as we shall see anon, as Good as Rich. He is the only one, who is Rich in, and of himself, who oweth noching to any other, who needech nothing from any other, from whom all things come, to whom chey are all owing. He is the living and inexhaustible Spring and Fountain of all Being and Goodness, the eternal I AM. Exod. 3, 14. There is none Good but one, that is GOD. Mat. 19, 176 He then is wonderfully Rich.
: 1. In the satisfactory enjoyment of Himself eternally, to whom nothing can be added, from whom nothing can be taken; eternally, indefectibly the same, yesterday, and to day, and for ever; to himself eternally sufficient, in himself perfecta ly blessed. In all the Perfections of Being, Power, Wisdom and Goodness, immense, uncontrolable, unalterable, infinice, independent, incomprehenfibly, and therefore inexpreslibly glorious, boundless and endless.
2. He is Rich in the voluntary and free causation and produktion of all chings. . He is the LORD who made Heaven and Earth, the Sea, and all things that are therein. Act. 14, 15. Who giveth to all Life, and Breath, and all things. Act. 17, 25. In bim we live, and move, and have our Being. V. 28. O LORD, how manifold are thy Works, in Wisdom
balt thou made them all, the Earth is full of the Riches. Pfal. 104) 24. He made the Earth, and created Man upon it; He, even bis Hands stretched out the Heavens, and all their host bath he Commanded. Isai. 45; 12. Thou art worthy, O Lord, to : receive Honour and Glory, and Power; for thou haft created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. Rev. 4. 11. Of bim, and through him, and to him, are all things; to whom be Glory for ever. Amen. Rom. il. 34.
· 3. He is Rich in the actual Polletion of all things. The Heavens are thine, and the Earth also is thine ; as for the World, and the fulness thereof, tkou halt founded them. Psal. 89. II. The Earth is the LORD's, and the fulness thereof, the World, and they that dwell therein. Pl.i. 24. 1.
He is Rich in the free disposal, and liberal diftribution of all things, as it seems good unto his Divine Majesty. He prepareth Rain for the Eartb; He maketh Grass to grow upon the Mountains; He giveth to the Beast his food, and to the young Ravens when they cry. Pfal. 147.8, 9. Thou openeft thine Hand, and satisfieft the desire of every living thing. Psal. 145. 16. He maketh his Sun to rise on the Evil, and on the Good; and sendeth Rain on the Fast, and on the Unjust. Mar. 5. 45. He giveth us richly all things to enjoy. 1. Tim. 6. 17. He is Rich unto all that call upon him. Rom. io. 12. Thine, O LORD, is the Greatness, and the Power, and the Glory, and the Vi&tory, and the Majesty; for all that is in the Heavens, and in the Earth, is thine ; thine is the Kingdom, O LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all. Both Riches and Honour come of thee, and thou reigneft over all,
and in thine hand is power and might, and in thine hand it is to make Great, and to give strength unto all. I Chron. 29. 11, 12.
He that hath within himself, and of his own, enough for himself, and for all the World, and hath the absolute command, and free disposing of all that he hath, and is never the poorer for whatever he useth or giveth, must needs be very rich. And such an one is God the LORD of us, and of all the World, and therefore the Rich Man here is not unfitly made use of by our Saviour to 'mind us of him,
And yet we must here remember, That no fimilitude whatsoever can be used to this purpose, which can any more than very faintly, and imperfectly resemble GOD. To whom shall we liken GOD? Or what likeness shall we compare unto him? Isa. 40. 18. To whom then will ye liken me, or. mall I be equal? Saith the Holy one. v. 50. The Richest Man upon Earth, suppose him Solomon in the height of all his Wealth and Glory, is a poor beggerly Worm,' in comparison of the rich God. The most accomplished Man is but of a finite nature, and limited perfection. Whatever he hath, he owes it to another; and is the absolutė owner or disposer of nothing that he hath, any more than he was the Author or Ma. ker of it; he hath it but for a limited time, and is accountable for all Things to God of whom he received them. But GOD is the absolute LORD of all Things, and of the Rich Man, as niuch as of any other, and all Things are provi. ded for, and preserved by him, and are govern'd and disposd of by no other Rule, but what his own Wisdom and Goodness hach prescribed, a.. R2
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greeably to his own most perfect nature, and that which he hath given them.
The contemplation of this richness of God is a necessary Duty, and may be of excellent use to us many ways.
First, The confideration of the fulness and ri. ches of the Divine Nature, will teach us to give unto GOD the Honour due unto his Name; that is, to behave our felves in all Things Religiously towards him. When we think on him as infinitely perfect in himself, and as the only Spring of all Being and Blessedness; we must needs feel our Obligations to him, our Dependance on him, and the necessity which lieth upon us to please him in all Things. The richness of GOD, or the very excellency of all Perfections which is in him, is the Foundation of a Natural Religion; and we are the most unnatural Things in the World, if we live not Religiously, when we have so much reason as to be sensible what kind of Being God is. If there be any such things as Admiration, Adoracion and Praile, to what can they be all due, if not to an infinire and immense Being, absolutely perfect in Power, Wisdom and Goodness. What is to be ador'd and worshipped with the most profound Humility and Devocion, if the great Author, and cause of all Things, the inexhaustible Fountain of all, chac is, or can be in the World, be not so? What is to be reverenced, if not infinite Majesty ? What can we stand in awe of, if not of irresistible Power? What may be confided in, if not infallible Knowledge and Wisdom? What can be loved and delighted in, if not perfect and unabateable Goodness?
To To whom should we pray, if not to the Sovereign Difpofer of all Things? To whom should we offer our Sacrifices of Thankfgiving, but to the universal Benefactor of the World? Whom should we obey, but the wise Governor, the Omnipotent Lord, and gracious Feeder and Protector of all Things To whom fhould we entirely resign our felves, if not to our Almighty Maker, rightful Owner? In what can we take up our rest, if not in the chief Good? The Riches of God, duly confider'd, makes all this to be our natural Duty to him.
Secondly, This teachech us, which is the very beft course that any one can possibly take, that he may become sincerely Religious. Nothing in the World is more like to persuade us to be in good carneft God's faithful Servants, and to make us afraid how wedally with him, and mock him by an Hypocritical Profession of Religion, than the serious medicating on the Riches, or infinite Perfections of his Nature. When we consider the total Dependence which we and all Things have upon him, even as far as to our very Being, this, if any thing, will make us serious, and in good earnest in all the Services which we perform un. to him. When we remember, That neither we, our selves, nor any thing else can any longer be, or act, than he is pleas'd to uphold, and enable us : That nothing hath any power to do us good, if he be not with it to bless it; that nothing can be hinder'd from hurting us, if he prevent it not: When we consider the emptiness and vanicy of all Things without him; this, if any thing, will persuade us to be in earnest to please him. Let us think seriously that we are God's R 3