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ed time, now is the day of salvation: to-day if you will hear his voice." Why should not this be the day from whence thou shouldst be able to date thy happiness? Why shouldst thou venture a day longer in this dangerous and dreadful condition? What if God should this night require thy soul? O that thou mightest know in this thy day, the things that belong to thy peace, before they be hid from thine eyes." This is thy day, and it is but a day." Others have had their day, and have received their doom, and now art thou brought upon the stage of this world, here to act thy part for the whole eternity. Remember, thou art now upon thy good behaviour for everlasting; if thou make not a wise choice now, thou art undone for ever. Look what thy present choice is: such must thine eternal condition be.‡

It was

And is it true indeed? Is life and death at thy choice? Yea, it is as true as truth is;§ why then, what hinders but that thou shouldst be happy? Nothing doth or can hinder but thine own wilful neglect or refusal. the speech of the Eunuch to Philip, "See, here is water, what doth hinder me to be baptised?" So I may say to thee, See here is Christ, here is mercy, pardon, and life; what hinders, but that thou shouldst be pardoned, Luke x. 42, Deut. xiii. 14.

*Luke xix. 45. + John ix. 4. and xvi. 25. Prov. i. 27, 29.

and saved? One of the martyrs, as he was praying at the stake, had his pardon set by him in a box, (which indeed he refused deservedly, because upon unworthy terms;) but here the terms are most honourable and easy. O sinner! wilt thou burn with thy pardon by thee? Why, do but forth with give up thy consent to Christ, to renounce thy sins, deny thyself, take up the yoke, and the cross, and thou carriest the day: Christ is thine, pardon, peace, life, and blessedness, all are thine: and is not this an offer worth embracing? Why shouldst thou hesitate or doubtfully dispute about the case? Is it not past controversy, whether God be better than sin, and glory than vanity? Why shouldst thou forsake thy own mercies, and sin against thy own life? When wilt thou shake off thy sloth, and lay by thine excuses? "Boast not thyself of to-morrow, thou knowest not where this night may lodge thee."*

Beloved, now the Holy Spirit is striving with you: he will not always strive. Hast thou not felt thine heart warmed by the word, and been almost persuaded to leave off thy sins and come in to God? Hast thou not felt some good motions in thy mind, wherein thou hast been warned of thy danger, and told what thy careless course would end in? It may be thou art like young Samuel, who, when the Lord called once and again, knew not the *Prov. xxvii. 1.

voice of the Lord,* but these motions and items are the offers, and essays, and callings, and strivings of the Spirit. O, take the advantage of the tide, and know the day of thy

visitation.

Now the Lord Jesus stretcheth wide his arms to receive you; he beseecheth you by us. How movingly, how meltingly, how pitifully, how compassionately he calleth! The church is put into a sudden ecstasy upon the sound of his voice, "The voice of my beloved:"+ O, wilt thou turn a deaf ear to his voice? It is not the voice that breaketh the cedars, and maketh the mountains to skip like a calf; that shaketh the wilderness, and divideth the flames of fire; it is not Sinai's thunder, but a soft and still voice: it is not the voice of Mount Ebal, a voice of cursing and terror, but the voice of mount Gerizim, the voice of blessing, and of glad tidings of good things. It is not the voice of the trumpet, nor the voice of war, but a message of from the king of peace. Methinks it should be with thee as with the spouse, "My soul failed me when he spake." I may say to thee, O sinner, as Martha to his sister, "The Master is come, and he calleth for thee."|| O! now with Mary arise quickly, and come

* 1 Sam. iii. 6, 7. + Cant. ii. 8. 2 Cor. v. 18, 20. Cant. v. 6.

xi. 28.

peace

Eph. vi. 15.
#John

turn in hither.

unto him. How sweet are his invitations. He crieth in the open concourse, "If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink."* How free is he! he excludeth none: "Whosoever will, let him come and take the water of life freely.t "Whoso is simple, let him Come eat of my bread, drink of the wine that I have mingled. Forsake the foolish and live." "Come unto me, &c., take my yoke upon you, and learn of me, and ye shall find rest to your souls."§ "Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out." How doth he bemoan the obstinate refuser? "O Jerusalem! Jerusalem! how often would I have gathered thy children as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!"¶ "Behold me, behold me; I have stretched out my hands all the day to a rebellious people. "** O, be suaded now at last to throw yourselves into the arms of love.

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Behold, O ye sons of men, the Lord Jesus hath thrown open the prison, and now he cometh to you, as the magistrates once to them,tt and beseeches you to come out. If it were from a palace or paradise that Christ did call you, it were no wonder if you were

*John vii. 37. + Prov. ix.4, 6. Mat. xxiii. 37. xvi. 39.

† Rev. xxii. 17. || John vi. 37. tt Acts

Prov. i. 21.
Mat. xi. 28, 29.
** Isa, lxv. 1, 2.

*

unwilling; (and yet how easily was Adam deluded thence!) but it is from your prison, Sirs; from your chains, from the dungeon, from darkness, that he calleth you, and will you not come? He calls you unto liberty,† and will you not hearken? His yoke is easy, his laws are liberty, his service freedom; and whatever prejudice you may have against his ways, if God may be believed, you shall find them all pleasure and peace, and shall taste sweetness and joy unutterable, and take infinite delight and felicity in them.§

Beloved, I am loath to leave you; I cannot tell how to give you over. I am now ready to shut up, but would fain strike this bargain between Christ and you before I end. What! shall I leave you as I found you at last? Have

you read hitherto, and are you not yet resolved upon a present abandoning all your sins, and closing with Jesus Christ? Alas! what shall I say? what shall I do? Will you resist all my importunity? Have I run in vain? Have I used so many arguments, and spent so much time to persuade you, and will you at last disappoint me? But it is a small matter that you reject me; you put a slight upon the God that made you; you reject the bowels and beseeching of a Saviour, and will be found resisters of the

*Isa. xlii. 6, 7. + Gal. v. 13.

James i. 25. 1 Cor. vii. 22. cxix. 103, 111, 165. 1 Pet. i. 8.

Mat. xi. 30. Prov. iii. 17. Psal.

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