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ways given great offence to ferious minds, the levity, and foolish talking, to which many addict themselves in the houfe of God. One would imagine that fuch people go with no other view, than to make remarks on the drefs, on the finery, and folly, of their neighbors. Is whispering, talking, laughing, feemly, do you think, in God's prefence? Let me befeech you to cease from so foolish, and so finful, a practice.
(8) Let me, lastly, take notice of another indecency, committed chiefly by the younger part of the congregation, I mean the irreverent custom of rushing out of the church, almost before the service is concluded. Let me prevail with you all, and you who are fathers and masters more especially, to enjoin your children and fervants, before they depart from God's house, to go reverently on their knees, and befeech God to forgive the wanderings of their hearts, and the coldness of their devotions; that," what they have heard with their out"ward ears, may produce in them the fruits. "of good living." Teach them then to depart like finful creatures, who have been worfhipping an Almighty God.
I will beg your patience a moment longer,
whilst I make a fhort application. Let me then request of you all, my brethren, to think feriously, before you enter the Church, into whofe awful prefence you are going. And when you have entered it, let me befeech you to fall meekly on your knees, to fupplicate God's acceptance of of your prayers, and to grant that the word to be preached, may become 66 a favor of life unto life," to all that hear it. Let there be, in future, no noife made by your entering it. And whether your are reading, or hearing the word, or offering up your prayers. and thanksgivings, do not let any little difturbance, as the opening of a door, or the falling of a book, withdraw your attention from your duty. Let this Church be, in future, diftinguished by the reverence and devotion of all who frequent it; and let me entreat you to pay fo much honor to Almighty God, as to pray to him, not in your prefent custom of fitting on your feats, or even the more decent one of standing, but "meekly kneeling on your knees." Let all impertinent gazing at other people's drefs; let all talking, whispering, and laughing, be for ever banished from this holy place. And instead of hastily departing before the Bleffing
is pronounced, let us return thanks to God for the opportunity of attending His house and fervice, and beg his Grace to accompany what has been delivered.
May God Almighty grant, that neither our negligence in frequenting this houfe of prayer, nor our contentions in rending and troubling it, nor our irreligion in polluting of it, may ever hinder the benefit we hope to reap in it, nor prevent his hearing all our prayers, which we put up in humility and reverence! May the eyes of that gracious and holy God we come here to worship, be opened day and night in this houfe of prayer, and his ears attentive to our petitions, and his hands open, and ready, to relieve our wants, and to bless us every Lord's day, and in all our weekly concerns to our lives end, through Jefus Chrift our Lord!
PROVERBS XX. I.
Wine is a mocker, ftrong drink is raging, and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wife.
Fall the vices to the commiffion of which
we are allured, either by the propensity of nature, or the temptations of life, there is not one that involves us in fo many dangers as exceffive drinking.
In whatever light we confider that deteftable vice, whether as pernicious to our health, deftructive of our understandings, fatal to our families, or offenfive to God, it stands pre-eminently distinguished above every other. So malignant indeed in its nature, and so tuinous in its confequences is every fin, that we may fay of the commiffion of each, what the women anfwered one another, when they were congra tulating the king of Ifrael on his fuccefs against