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Him; they thirst not after him; they do not rejoice in doing his will, neither make their boast of his praise. O faith, working by love, whither art thou fled? Surely the Son of man did once plant thee upon earth. Where art thou now? Among the wealthy? No. “The deceitfulness of riches” there “chokes the word, and it becometh unfruitful.” Among the poor? No. “The cares of the world” are there, so that it bringeth forth no fruit to perfecticm. However, there is nothing to prevent its growth among those who have “neither poverty nor riches:”—Yes; “the desire of other things.” And experience shows, by a thousand melancholy examples, that the allowed desire of any thing, great or small, otherwise than as a means to the one thing needful, will by degrees banish the care of that out of the soul, and unfit it for every good word or work. Such is the trouble—not to descend to particulars, which are endless—that wicked men occasion to the good. Such is the state of all good men while on earth. but it is not so with their souls in paradise. In the moment wherein they are loosed from the body, they know pain no more. Though they are not yet possessed of the “fulness of joy,” yet all grief is done away. For “there the wicked cease from troubling; and there the weary are at rest.” II. 1. “There the weary are at rest,”—which was the Second thing to be considered,—not only from those evils which prudence might have prevented, or piet removed, even in this life; but from those which were inseparable therefrom, j. were their unavoidable portion on earth. They are now at rest, whom wicked men would not suffer to rest before: for into the seats of the spirits of just men, none but the spirits of the just can enter. They are at length hid from the seourge of the tongue: their name is not here cast out as evil. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and the prophets, do not revile, or separate them from their company. They are no longer despitefully used, and persecuted; neither do they groan under the hand of the oppressor. No injustice, no malice, no fraud, is there; they are all “Israelites indeed, in whom there is no guile.” There are no sinners against their own souls; therefore there is no painful pity, no fear for them. There are no blasphemers of God or of his word; no profaners of his name or of his Sabbaths; no denier of the Lord that bought him; none that tramples on the blood of the everlasting covenant: in a word, no earthly or sensual, no devilish spirit; none who do not love the Lord their God with all their heart. - 2. There, therefore, “the weary are at rest” from all the troubles which the wicked occasioned; and indeed from all the other evils which are necessary in this world, either as the consequence of sin, or for the cure of it. They are at rest, in the First [...; from bodily pain. In order to judge of the greatness of this deliverance, let ut those who have not felt it take a view of one who lies on a sick or death bed. Is this he that was “made a little lower than the angels?” How is the glory departed from him t His eye is dim and heavy; his cheek pale and wan; his tongue falters; his breast heaves and pants; his whole body is now distorted, and writhed to and fro; now moist, and cold, and motionless, like the earth to which it is going. And yet, all this which you see is but the shadow of what he feels. You see not the pain that .
tears his heart, that shoots through all his veins, and chases the flying soul through
every part of her once-loved habitation. Could we see this too, how earnestly should we cry out, “O sin, what hast thou done! To what hast thou brought the noblest art of the visible creation! Was it for this the good God made man?” O not either will he suffer it long. Yet a little while, and all the storms of life shall be over, and thou shalt be gathered into the store house of the dead; and “there the weary are at rest l” 3. #. “are at rest” from all those infirmities and follies which they could not escape in this life. They are no longer exposed to the delusions of sense, or the dreams of imagination. They are not hindered from seeing the noblest truths, by inadvertence; nor do they ever lose the sight they have once gained, by inattention. They are not entangled with prejudice, nor ever misled by hasty or partial views of the object: and, consequently, no error is there. O blessed place, where truth alone can enter! truth unmixed, undisguised, enlightening every man that cometh into the world: where there is no difference of opinions; but all think alike; all are of one heart, and of one mind: where that offspring of hell, controversy, which turneth this world upside down, can never come: where those who have been sawn asunder thereby, and often cried out in the bitterness of their soul, “Peace, peace!” shall find what they then sought in vain, even a peace which none taketh from them. 4. And yet all this, inconceivably great as it is, is the least part of their deliverance. For in the moment wherein they shake off the flesh, they are delivered, not only from the troubling of the wicked, not only from pain and sickness, from folly
and infirmity; but also from all sin. A deliverance this, in sight of which all the rest vanish away. This is the triumphal song which every one heareth when he enters the gates of paradise:–“Thou, being dead, sinnest no more... Sin hath no more dominion over thee. For in that thou diedst, thou diedst unto sin once; but in that thou livest, thou livest unto God.”* 5. There, then, “the weary are at rest.” The blood of the Lamb hath healed all their sickness, hath washed them throughly from their wickedness, and cleansed them from their sin. The disease of their nature is cured; they are at length made whole; they are restored to perfect soundness. They no longer mourn the “flesh lusting against the Spirit;” the “law in their members” is now at an end, and no longer “wars against the law of their mind, and brings them into cap. tivity to the law of sin.” There is no root of bitterness left; no remains even of that sin which did “so easily beset them;” no forgetfulness of “Him in whom they live, and move, and have their being;”, no ingratitude to their gracious Redeemer, who poured out his soul unto death for them; no unfaithfulness to that blessed Spirit who so long bore with their infirmities. In a word, no pride, no selfwill is there; so that they who are “delivered from the bondage of corruption” may indeed say one to another, and that in an emphatical sense, “Beloved, now are we the children of God; and it doth not yet appear what we shall be; but we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.” 6. Let us view, a little more nearly, the state of a Christian at his entrance into the other world. Suppose “the silver cord” of life just “loosed,” and “the wheel broken at the cistern;" the heart can now beat no more; the blood ceases to move; the last breath flies off from the quivering lips, and the soul springs forth into etermity. What are the thoughts of such a soul that has just subdued her last enemy, death? that sees the body of sin lying beneath her, and is new born into the world of spirits? How does she sing, “‘O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory 7. Thanks be unto God,” who hath given me “the victory, through our Lord Jesus Christ! O happy day, wherein I shall begin to live! wherein I shall taste my native freedom! When I was ‘born of a woman' I had “but a short time to live,’ and that time was ‘full of misery;’ that corruptible body pressed me down, and enslaved me to sin and pain. But the share is broken, and I am delivered. Henceforth I know them no more. That head is no more an aching head: those eyes shall no more run down with tears: that heart shall no more pant with anguish or fear; be weighed down with sorrow or care: those limbs shall no more be racked with in: yea, ‘sin hath no more dominion over’ me. At length, I have parted from thee, O my enemy; and I shall see thy face no more I shall never more be unfaithful to my Lord, or offend the eyes of his glory; I am no longer that wavering, fickle, self-inconsistent creature, sinning and repenting, and sinning again. No. I shall never cease, day or might, to love and praise the Lord my God with all my heart, and with all my strength. But what are ye? Are ‘all these ministering spirits sent forth to minister to one “heir of salvation?” Then, dust and ashes, farewell! I hear a voice from heaven saying, ‘Come away, and rest from thy labours. Thy warfare is accomplished; thy sin is pardoned; and the days of thymourning are ended.’” 7. My brethren, these truths need little application. Believe ye that these things are so? What, then, hath each of you to do, but to “lay aside every weight, and run with patience the race set before” him? to “count all things” else “but dung” and dross; especially those grand idols, learning and reputation, if they are pursued in any other measure, or with any other view, than as they conduce to the knowledge and love of God? to have this “one thing” continually in thine heart, “when thou. sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up?”—to have thy “loins" ever “girt,” and thy “light burning?”—to serve the Lord thy God with all thy might; if by any means, when he requireth thy soul of thee, perhaps in an hour when thou lookest not for him, thou mayest enter “where the wicked cease from troubling, and where the weary are at rest?” - - •
* The sentiment which is here again expressed, that it is death which destroys sin in the human heart, though couched in the language of an Apostle, is a branch of that philosophical Mysticism which Mr. Wesley entertained at this early period of his life, and which he afterward renounced for the scriptural doctrine of salvation by #. According to the New Testament, every believer is already delivered from the dominion of sin; and the Bible never represents the entire sanctifi eation of our nature as effected by death. It is the work of the Holy Spirit; and is not suspended *;o: dissolution of the body, but upon the exercise of a steadfast faith in the almighty Saviou.
.*. . END OF THE SECOND Woluwirt.
The Sermon numbered “LVIII, ought to be LIX. With this correction, the true aggregate number of Sermons in the two volumes will now be found to be CXLI.
SERMon IV, p. 41.
JN on persuadebis, etiamsi persuaseris : [Thou shalt not persuade me, though thou shouldst persuade me.]
SERMoN XIII, p. 110. Ipso facto, [By the act itself.]
SERMon XV, p. 132.
Esse quoque in fatis reminiscitur, affore tempus,
Quo mare, quo tellus, correplaque regia cali
Jīrdeat, et mundi moles operosa laboret.
[It is remembered also to be fated that a time will be, when the sea, the land, and
the court of heaven, wrapt in flames, shall burn, and the mighty fabric of the universe shall labour.]
SERMon XX.--The Lord Our Righteousness.
[This Sermon, and the concessions made to Mr. Whitefield in 1743, with the hope
of maintaining union with him, are instances of Mr. Wesley's anxiety to approach his Calvinistic brethren, in his modes of expression, as far as possible. In this effort he sometimes exposed himself to be misunderstood on both sides; and became afterward convinced of “a leaning to Calvinism,” which he did not fail to correct. In the Minutes of 1770, he remarks:–“We said in 1744, ‘We have leaned too much toward Calvinism:’” and then proceeds to show “wherein,” and to apply the corrective. This led on to the controversy which produced the immortal Checks of Fletcher. Since that period, (so complete has been the effect of those admirable writings,) the Methodist preachers and societies have been in no danger of Calvinism; nor has there been any occasion since the Conference of 1770, to ask wherein they had leaned too much thereto.—See Watson's Life of Wesley, pp. 210–226.]
SERMon XXVIII, p. 263.
Linquenda tellus, et domus, et placens Uror: mec harum quas seris arborum Te, praeter invisam cupressum, Ulla brevem dominum sequetur ! [Your land, and house, and pleasing wife, must be left behind; nor of these trees jo you plant, will any, except the hated cypress, follow you, their short-lived ord!]
SERMon XXXVII, p. 330. Evēsotaguos, [Enthusiasm.]
Quaeritur, JEgysthus quare sit factus adulter 7 In promptu causa est: desidiosus eral. l [Is it asked why AEgysthus became an adulterer? The cause is obvious: he was slothful.]
SERMon LXXIX, p. 157.
SERMon LXXXII, p. 179.
SERMon LXXXIV, p. 194. *
SERMon LXXXIX, p. 226.
SERMon XCII, p. 250.
SERMon XCIII, p. 260.
Eutrapelus, cuicumque nocere volebat,
SERMon CIV, p. 343.
Homo sum: humani nihil a me alienum puto
SERMon CVII, p. 357.
Qualia nunc hominum producit corpora tellus.
p. 359. Difficilis, querulus, laudator temporis acti Se puero, censor, castigatorque minorum. [Hard to please, querulous, praising the time when they were boys, and censorious reprovers of the young.]
SERMon CXVII, p. 417.
Sermon CXXIV-On the Wedding Garment. |In Mr. Wesley's Journal for March, 1790, he says, “Friday, 26.-I finished my sermon on the Wedding Garment; perhaps the last that I shall write. My eyes are
now waxed dim; my natural force is abated. However, while I can, I would fain do a little for God before I drop into the dust.”]
MR. WESLEY'S SERMONS.
The Roman numerals refer to the volumes; the Arabic figures to the pages.
.4bility of the Lord to save his people
...Aged people, duty of, to avoid public di-
versions, ii, 52
.Angels, the existence of, discovered b
./1theism, described, i., 483—a disease of