Abernathy - Houston-Packer Collection BX9178.A33 S4 1748 v.3

168 21íe Love of Wifdons S E R m. he hath vouchfafed to the world by his mef VII. fengers. It is not confiftent with the nature '' of true religious wifdom, nor indeed with our nature, that it fhould be forced upon us, or difpenfed as force other of God's gifts are to men promifcuoufly, without any re- gard to previous difpofitions, or preparatory endeavours ufed by them. It can never be reafonably thought, that filch an accomplifh- ment as wifdom, fo perfeCtive of the human nature, and advantageous to it, fhould pre- vent our delires and our labour to obtain it; it is enough that God hath endued us with a capacity, and furnifhed us with fufficient motives and fufficient means, by a due im- provement of, and attention to which, we may arrive to fuch a meafure of it as will render us happy, and fu ll more and more happy in proportion to our proficiency. The firlt qualification mentioned in the text is the love of wifdom, which will na- turally introduce,us to an acquaintance with it. Wifdom is reprefented in the Rile and manner of writing ufed by Solomon and other ancient authors, as a divine perfon making a folemn entry into the world, difplaying her native excellence and beauty, and invi- ting men, even the molt fimple and igno- rant, to converfe familiarly with her, in ore de