Sermons on National Subjects by Charles Kingsley, Paperback | Barnes & Noble®
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Email address. So You my Brethren have generously engaged in a disinterested Scheme for Your King, and Country: God does generally crown such noble Undertakings with Success, and You have Encouragement to hope for it: But the Cause You have espoused, is the Cause of a sinful impenitent Country; and if God, in righteous Displeasure, should on this Account blast your Attempt, still you will have the Pleasure of reflecting upon Your generous Views and vigorous Endeavours, and that You have done Your Part conscientiously.
Having thus made some cursory Remarks upon the sundry Parts of the Text, I shall now conclude with an Address, first to you all in general, and then to you Gentlemen and others, who have been pleased to invite me to this Service. I cannot therefore dismiss You with a short hurrying Discourse. It concerns you all seriously to reflect upon your own Sins, and the Sins of your Land, which have brought all these Calamities upon us.
And if You believe that he is a just and righteous Ruler, You must also believe, that he would not thus punish a righteous or a penitent People. We and our Countrymen are Sinners, aggravated Sinners: God proclaims that we are such by his Judgments now upon us, by withering Fields, and scanty Harvests, by the Sound of the Trumpet and the Alarm of War. Our Consciences must also bear witness to the same melancholy Truth. And if my Heart were properly affected, I would concur with these undoubted Witnesses: I would cry aloud, and not spare, I would lift up my Voice like a Trumpet, to shew you Your Transgressions and Your Sins.
O my Country, is not thy Wickedness great, and thine Iniquities infinite? Where is there a more sinful Spot to be found upon our guilty Globe? Pass over the Land, take a Survey of the Inhabitants, inspect into their Conduct, and what do you see?
What do you hear? You hear the Swearer venting his Fury against God and Man, trifling with that Name which prostrate Angels adore, and imprecating that Damnation, under which the hardiest Devil in Hell trembles, and groans. You see Avarice hoarding up her useless Treasures, dishonest Craft planning her Schemes of unlawful Gain, and Oppression unmercifully grinding the Face of the Poor. You see Prodigality squandering her Stores, Luxury spreading her Table, and unmanning her Guests; Vanity laughing aloud, and dissolving in empty unthinking Mirth, regardless of God, and our Country, of Time and Eternity; Sensuality wallowing in brutal Pleasures, and aspiring with inverted Ambition, to sink as low as her four-footed Brethren of the Stall.
You see trifling and even criminal Diversions become a serious Business; the Issue of a Horse-race, or a Cock-fight, more anxiously attended to than the Fate of our Country. Or where these grosser Forms of Vice and Vanity do not shock your Senses, even there you often meet with the Appearances of more refined Impiety, which is equally dangerous. You hear the Conversation of reasonable Creatures, of Candidates for Eternity, engrossed by Trifles, or vainly wasted on the Affairs of Time: These are the eternal Subjects of Conversation, even at the Threshold of the House of God, and on the sacred Hours devoted to his Service.
You see Swarms of Prayer-less Families all over our Land: Ignorant, vicious Children, unrestrained and untaught by those to whom God and Nature hath entrusted their Souls. You see Thousands of poor Slaves in a Christian Country, the Property of Christian Masters, as they will be called, almost as ignorant of Christianity, as when they left the Wilds of Africa. You see the best Religion in all the World, abused, neglected, disobeyed and dishonoured by its Professors: And you hear Infidelity scattering her ambiguous Hints and Suspicions, or openly attacking the Christian Cause with pretended Argument, with Insult and Ridicule.
You see Crowds of professed Believers, that are practical Atheists; nominal Christians, that are real Heathens; many abandoned Slaves of Sin, that yet pretend to be the Servants of the Holy Jesus. You see the Ordinances of the Gospel neglected by some, profaned by others, and attended upon by the Generality with a trifling Irreverence, and stupid Unconcernedness.
What Multitudes lie in a dead Sleep in Sin all around us? You see them eager in the Pursuit of the Vanities of Time, but stupidly unconcerned about the important Realities of the eternal World just before them: Few solicitous what shall become of them when all their Connections with Earth and Flesh must be broken, and they must take their Flight into strange unknown Regions: Few lamenting their Sins: Few crying for Mercy and a new Heart: Few flying to Jesus, or justly sensible of the Importance of a Mediator in a Religion for Sinners.
If he be a Master, where is his Fear? If he be our Benefactor, where is our Gratitude to him? O blessed Redeemer! What little Necessity, what little Use do the Sinners of our Country find for thee in their Religion? And this Defect renders them all but shining Sins , glittering Crimes. How few pant and languish for thee, Blessed Jesus! And can never be contented with their Reformation, with their Morality, with their good Works, till they obtain an Interest in thy Righteousness, to sanctify all, to render all acceptable!
You see a withering, ravaged Country around you, languishing under the Frowns of an angry God; but how few earnest Prayers, how few penitential Groans do you hear? Pass over the Land, and bring me Intelligence, is not this the general Character of our Country? I know there are some happy Exceptions; and I hope sundry such might be produced from among you: But is not this the prevailing Character of a great Majority? Does not one Part or other of it belong to the Generality? The most generous Charity cannot hope the Contrary, if under any scriptural or rational Limitations.
May it not be said of the Men of Virginia, as well as those of Sodom, They are wicked, and Sinners before the Lord exceedingly? And thus, alas! And can a Land always bear up under such a Load of accumulated Wickedness? May we not fear that our Iniquities are now just full, and that he is about to thunder out his awful Mandate to the Executioners of his Vengeance, Put ye in the Sickle; for the Harvest is ripe; come get ye down, for the Press is full, the Vats overflow; for their Wickedness is great. And is there no Relief for a sinking Country? Or is it too late to administer it?
Is our Wound incurable, that refuseth to be healed? No, blessed be God; if you now turn every one of you from your Evil Ways, if you mourn over your Sins, and turn to the Lord with your whole Hearts, then your Country will yet recover. God will appear for us, and give a prosperous Turn to our Affairs; he has assured us of this in his own Word, At what Instant, says he, I shall speak concerning a Nation, and concerning a Kingdom, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy it; if that Nation, against whom I have pronounced, turn from their Evil, I will repent of the Evil that I thought to do unto them , Jer.
Therefore, my Brethren, as we have all rebelled, let us all join in unanimous Repentance, and a thorough Reformation.pierreducalvet.ca/39410.php
Sermons on Important Subjects Addendum
Not only your eternal Salvation requires it, but also the Preservation of your Country, that is now bleeding with the Wounds you have given it by your Sins. The safety of these our Friends, who are now engaged in so generous a Design, requires it: For an Army of Saints or of Heroes, cannot defend a guilty, impenitent People, ripe for the Judgments of God. If you would be everlastingly happy, and escape the Vengeance of eternal Fire, or to mention what may perhaps have more Weight with some of you if you would preserve yourselves, your Families, your Posterity, from Poverty, from Slavery, Ignorance, Idolatry, Torture and Death; if you would save yourselves and them from all the infernal Horrors of Popery, and the savage Tyranny of a mongrel Race of French and Indian Conquerors; in short, if you would avoid all that is terrible, and enjoy every Thing that is dear and valuable, R E P E N T, and turn to the Lord.
This is the only Cure for our wounded Country; and if you refuse to administer it in Time, prepare to perish in its Ruins. If you go on impenitent in Sin, you may expect not only to be damned forever, but what is more terrible to some of you to fall into the most extreme outward Distress. You will have Reason to fear not only the Loss of Heaven, which some of you perhaps think little of, but the Loss of your Estates, that lie so near your Hearts. And will you not repent, when you are pressed to it from so many Quarters at once? And now, my Brethren, in the last Place, I have a few parting Words to offer to you who are more particularly concerned in this Occasion; and I am sure I shall address you with as much affectionate Benevolence as you could wish.
Methinks this should not seem strange Counsel to Creatures, entirely dependent upon God, and at his Disposal. As you are an Independent Company of Volunteers under Officers of your own chusing, you may manage your Affairs more according to your own Inclinations, than if you had enlisted upon the ordinary Footing: And I hope you will improve this Advantage for the Purposes of Religion.
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Let Prayer to the God of your Life be your daily Exercise. When Retirement is safe, pour out your Hearts to him in secret; and when it is practicable, join in Prayer together Morning and Evening in your Camp. How acceptable to Heaven must such an unusal offering be , from that desart Wilderness! Maintain a Sense of divine Providence upon your Hearts, and resign yourselves and all your Affairs into the Hands of God.
You are engaged in a good Cause, the Cause of your People, and the Cities of your God; and therefore you may the more boldly commit it to him, and pray and hope for his Blessing. I would fain hope, there is no Necessity to take Precautions against Vice among such a select Company: But lest there should, I would humbly recommend it to you to make this one of the Articles of your Association, before you set out, that every Form of Vice shall be severely discountenanced, and if you think proper, expose the Offender to some pecuniary or corporal Punishment.
It would be shocking indeed, and I cannot bear the Thought, that a Company formed upon such generous Principles, should commit or tolerate open Wickedness among them; and I hope this Caution is needless to you all, as I am sure it is to sundry of you. May he teach your Hands to War, and gird you with Strength to Battle! May he bless you with a safe Return, and long Life, or a glorious Death in the Bed of Honour, and a happy Immortality!
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May he guard and support your anxious Families and Friends at home, and return you victorious to their longing Arms! May all the Blessings your Hearts can wish attend you wherever you go! These are Wishes and Prayers of my Heart; and Thousands concur in them: And we cannot but cheerfully hope they will be granted, through Jesus Christ. Page 5. Line Davies, at Canongate, April 29, Washington , whom I cannot but hope Providence has hitherto preserved in so signal a Manner, for some important Service to his Country.
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By Samuel Davies, A. In Vol. II Sermon II. Simon and St. Jude, an alteration, in the last compared with the first Editions, of sufficient length and importance to be noticed here. And in Vol.