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daughters as corner stones, polished after the similitude of a palace, and adorned with all the graces which become women professing godliness; and that all may be consecrated to God as living temples, and heirs of his heavenly kingdom.
REMEMBRANCE OF THE CREATOR IN
ECCLESIASTES xii. 1. Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth.
The wisdom of this advice requires no illustration. Attention to it, my young friends, is equally your duty, and your security. You owe it to God, and to yourselves. Neither sex, nor circumstances in life, can free you from this obligation. Nor is it required of youth only, to be mindful of their creator. “Young men and maidens, old men and children; let them praise the name of the Lord; for his name alone is excellent; his glory is above the earth and heaven.”
The text, indeed, is an address to the young; and is therefore chosen for the theme of our 31 discourse to youth; who are called upon in their early years to be mindful of their creator. But what they are now commanded to do, has ever been the duty of those more advanced in age. The subject, then, though directly addressed and applied to youth, will admonish, instruct, or reprovę, those of riper years, at whatever period of life. The method we shall pursue in discussing it, will be, To consider the general obligations to remember our creator; to shew what this implies; and to point out some particular reasons why this duty should be attended to in the days of youth.
I. The general obligations to remember our creator will be considered.
These obligations result from the nature, reason, and fitness of things. God is our creator, the former of our bodies, and the father of our spirits. From him we received our being, and all our powers and faculties. We are his workmanship, “ fearfully and wonderfully made," and fitted for a rational service; which we are bound to render to him. As the creator had an unquestionable right to assign to every creature his rank in the scale of being, and to require of each the improvement of the powers he hạth given it, according to his own good
pleasure, man must be subject to the same general law, and obliged to employ his faculties in such manner, as shall be most for the divine glory. In whatever he does, in the exercise of all his powers, he is to have a regard to his creator, and be obedient to his will.
As God is the former of your bodies, you must be bound to “ yield your members as instruments of righteousness unto him.” As he planted the ear, you are to hear the law from his mouth, listen to the declarations of his mind, and attend to the warnings, threatenings, and promises of his word. If deaf to these, and attentive to things that are vain, unprofitable, wicked, and profane; that corrupt the heart, and draw its affections from God, you will abuse his gift, by prostituting it to a purpose for which it was not designed.
As he formed the eye, that we may view his works, and discern his wisdom, power, and goodness, we should turn it “ atvay from beholding vanity,” and fix it upon objects that will raise our admiration, reverence, and love of him, who created the heaven and the earth, and constituted the whole frame of nature. Looking through the wonderful variety of nature's works, we shall perceive in them a bright display of the perfections of their author, which may enkindle the spirit of devotion in the soul. As the eye is in some measure an index of the mind, so it is an avenue to the heart, through which external objects pass, and influence its affections. That these may be pure and holy, we must “ make a covenant with our eyes” not to look upon things that will excite vile affections, and turn the heart from God. The pow. er of vision is not given, that we may look covetously on the things of others, amuse ourselves with vanities, or mark any thing out as a prey to dishonest wishes; but to serve the necessary purposes of life, enable us to discover, and lead us to admire and adore, the perfections of the Deity. Mindful of him, and of the end for which he hath endowed us with our several faculties, we shall feel an obligation to employ each to his glory..
Furnished with the organs of speech, our tongues are not in such a sense our own, that we are at liberty to use them to the dishonour of him that formed them. They are given by the creator, that we may " speak of his righteousness, and of his praise all the day long." If this were the practice, as it is the duty, of all classes of people, a mighty and no less happy