Wright - BT300 W8 1788

102 The NEW and COMPLETE-LIFE of our BLESSED their courte by the formy wind ; and, though they toiled hard, had no profpef of reaching the place where they defired to land. Our Lord had, from the mountain, be- held the diftrefs of his difeiples, and was now coming to their relief, though they had not the leaft expeEtation of his pre- fence. Thus the Chriflian, when norms and tempefts of trouble and afflirion overtake him, is too prone to forget his almighty fupport, and overlook the pro- mife of his great deliverer : but, it would be well for him to- remember, that the bleffed Jesus beholds every particular of his diftrefs, and hath not forgotten to be gracious, but, in his own time and way, will certainly appear in all his mightinefs to fave, and work out his deliverance. Nor ought it to be forgotten, that the time when human wifdom fails, when our dif- trefs and trouble arifes to its higheft pitch, when there appears no refuge, no help, no deliverer, then is the time for a God to manifeft his divine power ; and, at fuch a time, he hath often been found to be nigh at hand, and bath brought deliverance to his people in the mol wonderful and unexpeaedmanner. Thus the difciples, when toffed by the mighty tempel, and in danger of being fwallowed up by the foaming feas, faw their divine Matter at a dilance, walking upon the frothy furface of, the mighty waters ; they faw, but they knew him not: nor were they convinced by his nearer approach, but, thinking they had feen an apparition, fhrieked with fear. Their terrors, however, were foon at an end; with kind companion, and condefcending goodnefs, in his well-known voice, the bleffed JESUS difpelled their fears with thefe words, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid. No fooner had our great Re- deemer uttered thefe words, than every fear vanilbed, and fatisfarion and joy filled every heart. Peter was fo elated with the tight of his Mailer, and fo overjoyed to fee him walking on the fea, that he felt in his mind a throng define to accompany him ; and, accordingly, begged his Mailer to permit him to come upon the water. Our great Redeemer having, with con- defcending goodnefs, granted his request, he left the boat, and walked on the fur- face of the fea ; and fome fmall time con- tinued the miraculous courte, wondering at himfelf, and rejoicing in the power of his Mailer. But the form increafed, the whiffling winds roared around him, and the wild furges toffed their raging heads on high, and dafhed about their foam ; fo that it was with the utmoft difficulty that he kept on his feet. Peter was not fo firong as he imagined ; his pretence of mind for- fook him ; his faith failed ; he forgot the prefence of his divine Mailer, and he began to fink in the mighty waters. In this extremity, he looked earnenly for his divine Supporter, and, upon the brink of being fwallowed up, he cried, Lord, Pave me! His kind, companionate Mailer im- mediately relieved him ; he ftretched out his hand, and caught him; at the fame time, gently rebuking his faggering refo- lution and wavering faith, he faid unto him, 0 thou of little faith, wherefore didit thou doubt? The cafe of Peter fhould be a handing warning to the Chrihian, and excitehim to be very cautious of putting a vain confi- dence in his ownfrength. Peter thought that he could endure all things in the company of his Maler, and, while he felt his heart warm, he fuppofed, that, . his refolution and courage- would bear him above every fear. But on this, as well as on a future occafion, which will hereafter be remarked, he found himfelf miftaken. When he perceived the form to increafe, and the foamy billows rage more horribly than before, his fears fuggefted, that either his Mailer would be unable, or unwilling, to fupport him amidI the furious blafs of