Wright - BT300 W8 1788

54 The NEW- and COMPLETE LIFE of our BLESSED Redeemer; and that they might not fup- pofe that the heavenly- mindednefs which he recommended, was confiftent with' a' covetous and anxious defire after worldly Aches, our Lord informs them that thefe things are directly contrary to each other. No man, fays he, can ferve two mailers ; for either he will love the one, and hate the other, or 'elfe he will hold to the one, and defpife the other: ye cannot ferve God and mammon ! Our Lord proceeded to enforce the hea- venly doctrine by afferting the univerfa- lity of the providence of God, and his paternal care over the leali and meaneft of his creatures. Behold, fays he, the fowls of the air : for they fow not, neither do they read, norgather into barns ; yetyour heavenly Father feedeth them. Are notye rauch better than they ? If the providence of God extends to the meaneft and moll infignificant of his creatures, and his wif- dom hath fo conduel:ed- his wide creation, that there is abundant provifion made for the fowls of the air, and beafls of the field, (hall his creature man, whom he hath placed at the head of his lower creation, and made the object ofhis peculiar care, be over anxious and careful, or gloomy and difcóntented for fear he fhould not be able to procure food and raiment? How un- worthy is this of his fuperior reafon, and how difhonourable to his great Maker, and moll bountiful Benefactor'! Thus the di- vine Teacher led the molt ignorant and illiterate of his hearers to entertain great and fublime ideas of God and his provi- dence ; and gave them a more elevated and extenfive view of the nature of his government than had been taught in the fèhools of the philofophers : for though they believed that there was a God, and that he made and governed the world, they had but very dark and confufed no- tions of his particular providence, as it relates to the (late of every individual in his creation. This, our great Redeemer gave them to underßand, was fixed by the 3 univerfal Governor, with more exacmefs and precifion than was generally imagined, and lefs in the power of individuals to alter by their utmoft anxiety and care. Which ofyou, fays he, by taking thought, can add one cubit unto his Stature? The .illuflrious- Preacher then proceeds from the animal, to the vegetable part of the creation, and infers the, abfurdity ofanxious and vexatious cares- concern- ing raiment. Can it be fuppofed that the great Being, who fpreads frefh verdlsre over the fields, and adorns themwith thofe flowers which thine brighter than the golden embroidery which glitters on the purple robes of kings, will not provide raiment for his own people ? Will he thus clothe the inanimate and neglea the nobleft part of his creation? Confider, faid the exalted Redeemer, the lilies of the field, how theygrow, they toil not, neither do they f/ün; and yet Ifay unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of thefe. Wherefore, if God fo clothe the grafs of the field, which to-day is, and to-morrow is call into the oven, fall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Let thefe confiderátions excite you, he adds, to be eafy and quiet, patient and refigned to the allotments of Providence. Seekfir/t the kingdom of God and his righ- teoufn f . Make it your firít great con- cern to purfue the intereft of your immor- tal fouls, and reft not till you have ob- tained a rational and fcriptural ,fatisfaElion that your eternal intereft is fafe; and, when this great bleffing is obtained, be not anxious or vexatioufly careful concerning the things- of time and fenfe, but reit af- fured that all thefe things, fo far as necef- fary to your fupreme good, fhall be added unto you. The exalted Redeemer, now drawing towards the conclufion of his difcourfe, pro- ceeded to forbid all rafh and uncharitable judgment, either with regard to the general charakters or particular actions of men. This