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fhall ferve him in a manner infinitely more perfect and joyful in his temple above!

In difcourfing on this fubject, I propofe, in dependence on divine strength,

I To explain what is the object of a faint's defire, when he faith, in the words of Mofes, I beseech thee, fhew me thy glory.

II. To improve the fubject-particularly by pointing out what is the most proper preparation for fuch a discovery.

I. Then, I am to explain what is the object of a faint's defire, when he faith, in the words of Mofes, I beseech thee, fhew me thy glory. It is very probable, from the paffage following the text, which I have read, that Mofes had fome regard to the fenfible appearance, which, in that difpenfation, did often accompany or notify the immediate prefence of the angel of the covenant. He defired, probably, to be ftrengthened for beholding stedfastly the Shechinach, or bright and luminous cloud which fometimes appeared over the tabernacle, and, by its glorious luftre, tended to affect the mind with a fenfe of the power and fovereignty of the Lord Jehovah. But. this, furely, was not all; for this, in itfelf, was only a fubfidiary mean, which ferved to carry their views to the real and fpiritual glory of God. To the laft, therefore, we fhall confine our attention, as to what the gospel particularly opens to us, and what believers are enabled, by faith, to apprehend.

When Chriftians, then, defire to see the glory of God, it feems chiefly to imply the following things:

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1. They defire to fee the glory of an eternal independent God; they defire to fee the only living and true God in his own inherent excellence and infinite perfection. God is the fource and fum of all excel-lence; or, in the language of the Pfalmift, the perfection of beauty.' Every thing noble or beautiful in the creature, is only a faint ray from the fulness of the Creator's glory. Therefore he is the proper object of the highest esteem, and most profound veneration, of every reafonable creature. The vifion and fruition of God conftitute the employment and happiness of heaven: and even here, while they are in preparation for the higher house, the faints defne fuch a discovery of the divine glory as their condition will admit of, and take pleasure in contemplating his nature, as revealed to them both in his word and in his works. They dwell, with adoring wonder, on all his attributes, which are boundless and unfearchable: the immenfity of his being, who fills heaven and earth with his prefence, who feeth in fecret, and from whom the thickeft darkness cannot cover us; his irresistible power, who fpake, and it ⚫ was done, who commanded, and it ftood faft;who called this great univerfe out of nothing into being, who doth in the army of heaven, and a· among the inhabitants of the earth whatever seems "good unto him:' his infinite holiness and purity, ⚫ with whom evil cannot dwell, nor finners ftand in his prefence; who looketh to the moon, and it shineth not, to the stars, and they are not pure in his fight:' his infinite wisdom, 'who worketh all things according to his will, who bringeth the counsel of


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the heathen to nought, and makes the devices of the people of none effect: his boundless goodness, which fills the earth, and flows in plenteous ftreams to all the creatures of his power.

But, perhaps, fome are faying, what is there extraordinary or peculiar in all this? is it not clearly revealed in the word of God? can any Christian be ignorant of it? If Mofes, in that early difpenfation, defired a difcovery of the divine perfections, nothing of that kind is wanting to us, who, fince the fulness of time, have fo complete a revelation in the New Teftament. But, my brethren, I muft beg of you to obferve these two things:

1. That there is in the fulnefs of the Godhead an infinite and endlefs variety even for the employment of our intellectual powers. Well might Zo phar, in the book of Job, fay, Job xi. 7,8,9. 'Canft thou, by fearching, find out God? canft thou find out the Almighty unto perfection? It is as high as heaven, what canft thou do? deeper than hell, what canft thou know? the measure thereof is ⚫ longer than the earth, and broader than the fea.


2. That the real and proper knowledge of the glory of God is by inward and fpiritual illumination. The holy fcriptures themselves, however clear a difcovery they contain of the nature of God, are no better than a fealed book to many even of the greatest comprehenfion of mind. It is one thing to think, and speak, and reafon on the perfections of God, as an object of science, and another to glorify him as God, or to have a deep and awful impreffion of him upon our hearts. Real believers will know this by

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experience. A discovery of the glory of God, is not to inform them of a truth which they never heard before, but to give lively penetrating views of the meaning and importance of thofe truths of which they had, perhaps, heard and spoken times without number. Sometimes one word spoken of the Eternal, the Almighty, the Holy One, will be carried home upon the confcience and heart with fuch irrefiftible force, as to fhew them more of God than ever they had feen before. O what a difference is there between the way in which we use the fame words in prayer or praise, at one time, and at another! None but down-right atheists will deny the omniscience and omniprefence of God; but how far is this general acknowledgment from that overwhelming fense of his presence which believers have sometimes in his worship in publick or in fecret. What a new fenfe of God's prefence had Jacob at Bethel, when he said, Gen. xxviii. 16, 17. Surely the Lord is in this place, and I knew it rot: and he was afraid, and faid, how dreadful is this place? this is ⚫ none other but the house of God, and this is the


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gate of heaven?' What a sense of God's prefence had Hagar, Gen. xvi. 13. when ' she called the name ⚫of the Lord that spake unto her, thou, God, feeft me; for, the faid, have I alfo here looked after him that feeth me?' or Job, when he expreffes himself thus, Job xlii. 5, 6. 'I have heard of thee by the hearing

of the ear; but now mine eye feeth thee. Where'fore I abhor myself, and repent in duft and • ashes ? '

I shall only further obferve, that it plainly appears

that this difcovery of the glory of God, belongs only to his own people. Wicked men are faid, in fcripture, to be fuch as know not God. They are alfo defcribed a little differently, as not having God in all their thoughts; not but that wicked men may have a general or customary belief, in the being and perfections of God, but because they have not that intimate fenfe of his prefence, that discovery of the glory and amiableness of his perfections, which is peculiar to his own children. Even the natural perfections of God, his power and wifdom, cannot be beheld with fuch veneration by any, as by those who are fenfible of their obligations to ferve him. But above all, the glory of his infinite holiness and juftice can never be feen, but by thofe who defire to fubmit to it; nor the glory of his infinite mercy, but by those who fee themfelves indebted to it. This leads me to obferve,

2. That the believer defires to fee the glory of a gracious and reconciled God, not only infinitely glorious in himself, but infinitely merciful to him. This view ought never to be feparated from the former. Take away the divine mercy, and the luftre of his other perfections is too ftrong for us to behold. The power, wifdom, holinefs and juftice of God, feparated from his mercy, fpeak nothing but unmixed terror to the guilty. It is very probable, that there was fomething in the defire of Mofes, in the text, according to his own view, ignorant and unadvised; but God granted his requeft only in fuch a way as could be useful to him. When he fays, I beseech thee fhew me thy glory, the answer is in the

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