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There are many who have passed the age of youth and beauty; who have resigned the pleasures of that smiling season; who begin to decline into the vale of years, impaired in their health, depressed in their fortunes, stript of their friends, their children, and perhaps still more tender connexions. What resource can this world afford them? It presents a dark and dreary waste, through which there does not issue a single ray of comfort. Every delusive prospect of ambition is now at an end : long experience of mankind, an experience very different from what the open and generous soul of youth had formerly dreamt of, has rendered the heart almost inaccessible to new friendships. The principal sources of activity are taken away, when they for whom we labour are cut off from us ; they who animated, and who sweetened all the toils of life. Where then can the soul find refuge, but in the bosom of religion? There she is admitted to those prospects of Providence and futurity, which
alone can warm and fill the heart. I speak here of such as retain the feelings of humanity;, whom misfortunes have softened, and perhaps rendered more delicately sensible; not of such as possess that stupid insensibility, which some are pleased to dignify with the name of Philosophy,
It might therefore be expected, that those philosophers, who think they stand in no need themselves of the assistance of religion to support their virtue, and who never feel the want of its consolations, would yet have the humanity to consider the very different situation of the rest of mankind; and not endeavour to deprive them of what habit, at least, though, if they will not allow it to be nature, has made necessary to their morals, and to their happi. ness. It might be expected, that humanity would prevent them from breaking into the last retreat of the unfortunate, who can no longer be objects of their envy or resentment; and tearing from them their only remaining comfort. The attempt to ridicule religion may be agreeable to some, by relieving them from restraint upon their pleasures ; and may render others very miserable, by making them doubt those truths, in which they were most deeply interested; but it can convey real good and happiness to no one individual.
CREATION In the progress of the Divine works and government, there arrived a period, in which ihis earth was to be called into existence. 53 When the signal moment, predestined from all eternity, was come, the Deity arose in his might; and with a word created the world, What an illustrious moment was that, when, from non-existence, there sprang at once into being, this mighty globe, on which so many millions of creatures now dwell!-No preparatory measures were required. No long circuit of means was employed. “ He spake; and it was done : he commanded; and it stood fast. The earth was at first without form, and void ; and darkness was on the face of the deep.” The Almighty surveyed the dark abyss; and fixed bounds to the several divisions of nature. He said, “Let there be light: and there was light.” Then appeared the sea, and the dry land. The mountains rose; and the rivers flowed. The sun and moon began their course in the skies. Herbs and plants clothed the ground. The air, the earth, and the waters, were stored with their respective inhabitants. At last, man was made after the image of God. He appeared, walking with countenance erect; and received his Creator's benediction, as the Lord of this new world. The Almighty beheld his work when it was finished ; and pronounced it good. Superior beings saw with wonder this new accession to existence. " The morning stars sang together; and all the sons of God shouled for joy.”
alone can warm and fill the here of such as retain the feel nity;, whom misfortunes have perhaps rendered more delica not of such as possess that stup which some are pleased to di name of Philosophy,
It might therefore be expec philosophers, who think they st! themselves of the assistance of port their virtue, and who neve of its consolations, would yet h nity to consider the very differe the rest of mankind; and not deprive them of what habit, at if they will not allow it to be nat necessary to their morals, and t ness. It might be expected, t would prevent them from bre last retreat of the unfortunate longer be objects of their envy and tearing from them their on comfort. The attempt to ridicule be agreeable to some, by relievi restraint upon their pleasures ; der others very miserable, by doubt those truths, in which ti deeply interested; but it can con and happiness to no one individ
In the progress of the Divin government, there arrived a peri his earth was to be called in