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dependant in the land. The return of the Sabbath rescues them, for a season, from every thing painful in the inferiority of their allotment, and reminds them that whatever be the depression of their civil condition, they may still be the Lord's freemen. They visit the same sanctuary, and join in the same songs of praise with those who in other respects are above them. The happy influence of such an arrangement upon the minds, the habits, the sense of self-respect, and the feeling of contentment of those in the lower walks of life, can scarcely be sufficiently estimated. The effect of the Sabbath here is two. fold. It blunts the edge and smooths the asperity of authority on the one hand, and on the other, it begets such a temper that submission itself becomes pleasant.

powever, to stop here. The God of the Sabbath condescends to notice the sry cattle which minister to our gratification, and provides for them a season in which they also may enjoy repose. Truly his tender mer. cies are over all the works of his hands. A day of rest for these inferior animals is kind and compassionate, even when they are in the hands of men of humane and tender feelings. But it is not every man that regardeth the life or the comfort of his beast. The owners of these creatures, in multitudes of cases, are cruel and mercenary to the highest degree, and disposed to push them far beyond their real strength. How important then that such men should be restrained by the strong arm of God's authority! Whatever be their dispositions, there is one day of the week on which they may not, under pain of the divine displeasure, employ one of their beasts for any secular purpose at all. Rides for amusement, and journeys for business cannot be taken, without flying in the face of an explicit command of the Most High.

But will men be losers by obeying God in this particular? Far from it. If we had nothing further in view than to have our horses clothed with strength, and our oxen firm for labor, we must yield to them that portion of time, which the Decalogue prescribes. This point was fully proved in the recent inquiries in the British house of commons, in reference to the better observance of the Lord's day. It was then ascertained, by the testimony of the most extensive and respectable stage proprietors, that a horse can perform more service, and will enjoy more health and spirits, in a given number of years, by giving him every Sabbath as a season of rest. All the gain, therefore, is on the side of godliness.

Nomit is not in anger, but in love that God requires a stop, a complete stop, to be put to all business on this sacred day. The good of the commu. nity requires that the sound of a tool, the prancing of a hoof, or the rattling of a wheel, for secular purposes, should not be heard from one end of the land to the other. All should be quiet and tranquil, as on that blessed morning when God himself rested from all his work which he had made.

2. The worldly interests of mankind are promoted by a careful observance of the Sabbath.

It is not affirmed that every one who keeps the Sabbath holy, will as a thing of course become rich, or great, or honorable, in the common accepta. tion of these terms. But the proposition to be established is, that the due observance of the Sabbath has a direct and palpable tendency to improve a man's temporal condition.

Hear what the Scriptures say on this subject. “ If ye walk in my statutes, and keep my commandments and do them, then will I give you rain in due season, and the land shall yield her increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit. And your threshing shall reach unto the vintage, and the vintage unto the sowing time, and ye shall eat your bread to the full. And five of you shall chase an hundred, and an hundred of you shall put ten thousand to flight. And I will walk among you, and will be your God, and ye shall be my people.”

These are specified as some of the happy results of keeping the Sabbath. But let us look at the reverse of this bright and animated scene. “If ye will not hearken unto me, and will not do all these commandments, ye shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it. And I will set my face against you, and ye shall flee when none pursueth. And I will break the pride of your power, and make the heaven as iron, and the earth as brass. And your strength shall be spent in vain, for the land shall not yield her in. crease, nor the trees their fruit. And I will walk contrary unto you, and I will punish you seven times for your sins. And I will bring the land inte desolation, and it shall enjoy her Sabbaths."

It is in this way that God himself speaks. Without reference, however, to any particular interposition of Providence in the case, it may be shown that the proper observance of the Sabbath tends to prosperity as a natural and obvious result. The hallowed influence, with which this day comes attended, cannot but operate favorably on the whole character and habits of man. Not only does it refresh him for labor, but by its lessons of industry and sobriety it always disposes him to turn that labor to good account. Will a man go away from the sanctuary to squander his estate by extravagant arrangements and expenses? Will he depart from the courts of the Lord, to forget that diligence in business is a duty, as well as fervor of spirit? Will he be seen one hour in the temple of God, and the next in the tavern or the grog-shop ? Will he lose sight of the claims of his wife and his little ones, while he hears from the pulpit that such a man is worse than an infidel? This, as a general thing, is not to be expected. If he becomes a spendthrift, an idler, or a fol. lower of strong drink, you will soon see him bidding adieu to all the ministrations of the Sabbath.

There is one fact, which serves to set this subject in a strong, but just light. Every unsanctified Sabbath is likely to be attended with those extra expenses which idleness and vice seldom fail to create. One of these days devoted to amusements, costs more than five, or even ten of them occupied with their appropriate duties. Desecrated Sabbaths stand at the head of those avenues which lead directly to the abodes of infamy, intemperance, and death. There is nothing to be gained by breaking the fourth commandment. You could not multiply the number of squalid, miserable, and vicious poor, faster than by blotting out the remembrance of the Sabbath from the minds of men. Such a measure would be sure to infest our streets with noisy beggars, and fill our hospitals and prisons with hapless inmates.

But some one may still ask, whether the preacher is prepared to make good the assertion that all labor on the Sabbath is unproductive? Will he main. tain that the immense business which on this day is driven forward on our rivers, canals, and rail-roads, is always unprofitable? Is it his idea that no man can enlarge his estate by taking the Lord's time for the doing of his own work? These are fair questions, and they deserve a candid answer. Let it then be conceded, that since the present is a state of trial and not of recompense, the most wicked individuals in the community, who neither fear God nor regard man, are sometimes suffered to increase in wealth, until their eyes stand out with fatness, and they have more than heart could wish. But does this prove, as a general principle, that there is any natural connection between impiety and prosperity? The owner of a stage-coach, or a steam-boat, may accumulate thousands, and yet run them every Sabbath day; but how is it with the pleasure-loving throng, who are thus enticed from their families and their homes? Does it put either money into their pockets, or contentment into their hearts? All the advantage here, if advantage there be any, is on the side of the few, while the loss falls upon the many. Even this, however, is not stating the whole case. The wisest and best observers of human events tell us that, if we follow along the path of these men, we shall generally find that the end of it is covered with darkness. Their sun, after all, is wont to set in a cloud.

Especially is the Sabbath the poor man's friend. Its uniform tendency is to encourage those industrious and frugal habits, which are so inseparably connected with the comfort and respectability of the humbler classes of society. You cannot ordinarily consign to want, ignorance, or vice, the individual who

regularly attends upon the ordinances of religion. You can scarcely pre- . vent the respectability of that family, which we see, Sabbath after Sabbath, coming up to the courts of the Lord. Let wicked men say what they will, there does come an influence from such scenes, to beget a feeling of selfrespect, and ward off the evils of poverty and depression. This point is sus. ceptible of the clearest demonstration. The house of God, all the country over, is the radiating point of light, and peace, and industry, and contentment, for the whole neighborhood in which it is placed. So true is this, that our poor rates could be lessened in no way more effectually, than by bringing about a universal observance of the Sabbath.

3. The Sabbath, when rightly observed, furnishes the very best school of virtue and good morals.

All the most respectable infidels have been ready to acknowledge, that there is no code of laws for the regulation of human conduct, like that of the Bible. According to the testimony of the eloquent, though depraved and infidel Rosseau, it is madness to compare Socrates with the Son of Mary, in this respect. The precepts of the Bible surpass all other precepts, because they are intended to control the heart as well as the conduct, and to make the tree good, as the first and most effectual step towards the production of good fruit.

Only let this blessed book rule in every bosom, and men will do to others just as they wish others to do to them. Injustice, fraud, and oppression, all meanness, duplicity, and over-reaching, would be done away at once, and done away for ever.

But when are these laws to be expounded, and applied to the various duties of common life? As it respects the bulk of mankind, the Sabbath is almost the only opportunity they have for any careful and thorough attention to this deeply interesting subject. On this sacred day, however, they are detached from all earthly concerns, and their minds are free to attend to nobler pursuits. From week to week they are collected in a school established for the incul. cation of heavenly wisdom, and thus'one-seventh part of their whole life is spent in learning their duty to God and man. What an opportunity is this for improvement in all that is excellent, and lovely, and of good report. The man who dies in middle life, is furnished with five full years; and if he lives to old age, with ten full years of instruction, exactly adapted to make him a better husband, a better father, a better neighbor, and a better member of the community. For a class-book the Bible is put into his hands. God himself is the teacher, and every lesson is dictated by that wisdom which cometh from above. Every precept, every promise, every threatening is alike replete with a sound and healthful influence. Here it is that the laws of the Most High are brought home to the bosoms and business of men, and they go away to lead quiet and peaceable lives, in all godliness and honesty.

In accordance with these remarks, you will always find the purest and most elevated morality among those who keep the Sabbath holy. This assertion is made without the least fear of successful contradiction ; and you are invited to test its truth as often as you please. Ride through the country, and examine its towns and villages-mingle with the inhabitants of every grade, and become acquainted with their feelings and habits,—then tell me candidly where you find most industry, most love of order, most contentment, most sobriety, most purity, most freedom from low and debasing vices. I anticipate your answer. These are virtues which grow under the genial influences of the Sabbath, and among the people who love the sound of the church-going bell. But can you point me to one disturber of the peace of society, to one idle, dissolute family, to one single vicious neighborhood, that regards the Lord's day? This will not be pretended. Sir Matthew Hale says, “ that of all the persons convicted of capital crimes while he was upon the bench, there were a few only who were not ready to confess that they began their career of wickedness in a neglect of the duties of the Sabbath.”

It cannot be otherwise than that virtue and good morals must disappear when the Sabbath is forgotten. In every instance where this memorial of creation and redemption is treated with neglect, a strong and resistless tide of iniquity is seen to set in. Look where you will over the earth; if the Sabbath has become a desolation, there is little of domestic comfort left. Let this day be once made like the rest of the week, in our own country, and all the foundations of social happiness will be broken up. A single half century would suffice to carry us back to the rudeness, and atheism, and vice of the

dark ages.

This matter is entitled to the fullest investigation. We will suppose that you are in search for a quiet, contented, and prosperous neighborhood. But you never can find it, if you travel beyond the influence of the Lord's day. You are looking for parental tenderness and filial obedience. But these are seldom met with, where no holy time is recognized. You are inquiring after domestic purity and all the endearments of social life. But they are not to be found where the Sabbath gives no tone to moral sentiment. You wish to reside in a place where life is valued, and property is secure.

But no such place exists, where the restraining energy of the fourth commandment is not felt. Make the inquiry as often as you please, and you find that virtue and sound morals decline just in proportion as you recede from the illuminations and restraints of the holy Sabbath. Darkness covers the earth, and gross darkness the people.

I am confident that this subject has never yet received a due degree of attention from the men of this happy land. Suppose that the Sabbath was abolished, our religious temples burnt to the ground, the public preaching of the gospel interdicted, and all the ministers of the sanctuary driven into exile, what would be the result ? Why, you may tell by a visit to those countries where there is no Sabbath, no house of God, no teacher of the way of life. In every such case, without a solitary exception, ignorance, vice, and misery, overspread the entire surface of society, and affect its very vitals.

But will it be deemed unsuitable for me to add, that the Sabbath is the least expensive, as well as the best school ? This is especially true in our own country, where the people choose their own pastor, and assign him such support as is deemed by both parties competent. We have no ecclesiastical revenues, no mitred heads, no superb palaces for the clergy, to drain away the scanty earnings of the poor. Here a multitude may receive instruc. tion at a cost which bears hard upon none, and which returns even in kind more than it receives. Many families pay as much for a few lessons given to a single child, in some ornamental branch of education, as they do for the yearly religious advantages of the whole household. It is unpleasant to add that the little which religion costs is not always cheerfully paid. The fact however is obvious, that no instruction whatever can be had at so small an expense, as that which relates to piety and good morals. But the Sabbath school, also, as well as the pulpit, illustrates this idea. What an amount of talent, and energy of character, and real consecration of heart to a good object, is to be found among the tens of thousands of teachers in this blessed institution. They are giving of their time, and often of their money too, most liberally to this hallowed service; and though in most cases they receive but little honor from men, God himself will reward them openly. Such gratui. tous efforts for the upbuilding of his kingdom shall not be forgotten.

4. The personal and social character of man is elevated by a proper observance of the Sabbath.

One of the best safeguards to an upright course of conduct is to be found in a deeply rooted, and well regulated self-respect. The man who has a due regard for his character and standing in society, will generally strive to merit and secure the good opinion of those around him. But there is no season when this sentiment is so strengthened, and brought into such wholesome exercise, as on the Sabbath. Every thing connected with this sacred day, the events to which it looks back, the prospect which it opens, and the feel. ings which it fosters, are all adapted to give dignity and elevation to man's character. He will indeed be sensible of his own littleness, but he cannot forget his immortal existence and high destiny. Every time he attends upon the services of the sanctuary, there will be sure to be something to expand his mind, and purify his affections, and raise him above ignoble pleasures and pursuits.

It is literally impossible for a person to attend seriously to the duties of the Sabbath and not be benefitted. Those who statedly come up to the house of the God of Jacob, that they may be taught his laws, will never fall into total neglect and obscurity. No individual, or family, or neighborhood, ever pursued this course without securing some degree of respect and consideration by it. They will be improved both in their minds and manners. There will be more of neatness in their apparel, and cleanliness in their manner of living, of order in their habitations, and of decorum in their inter. course with each other. As a mere matter of taste and refinement, what can be so lovely as to see a whole community flocking together Sabbath after Sabbath to the house of God. There is something here on which the eye

of philanthropy may look with delight. Met together on a holy day, and in a sacred place, and united with a devout assembly, in worshipping the God of heaven, men must improve in every good feeling and purpose. They may be poor, but there will be a charm of peace and contentment spread over their character, which goes very far to rob poverty itself of its sharpest sting. A sort of sweet serenity will be seen to dwell with such as love the holy place of the tabernacle of the Most High.

Think also how the Sabbath is calculated to check and repress all the unamiable traits of human character. What can the pride of rank or for. tune find to feed upon, where men are gathered together in the presence of the infinite Jehovah ? How shall the wise man glory in his wisdom, or the rich man in his riches, at the throne of Him before whom all are upon the same level ? The glare of fashion and the pomp of wealth are annihilated, when men find themselves mingling with their poorer neighbors in the service of Almighty God. They all sing one song, meet at one sacramental table, and the little differences of external condition are lost sight of. There it is that the loftiness so natural to wealth and honors is bowed down, and all haughtiness laid in the dust, and the Lord alone exalted.

In this view of the subject, the Sabbath seems to be truly republican in its aspect. At any rate, its provisions exactly correspond with the spirit and genius of our free institutions. Never was there a louder cry raised in favor of equal rights and privileges than at the present time; but it may be doubted whether the best method of attaining these important blessings is generally understood. The requisitions of the fourth commandment would blend the different classes of society together in a happier manner than any which mere human wisdom has devised. We do not wish to see such a levelling produced as is witnessed when our great men mingle with the low and worthless in groceries and bar-rooms, for the purpose of influencing the ballot-box. This is a sort of equality to be sure; but it is an equality effected not by rais. ing the inferior classes up, but by sinking the others down. Such an amalga. mation is likely to do more harm than good. But the Bible shows us a more excellent way; and happy for us will it be, if our leading political men should come at length to perceive the adaptation of the sanctuary to promote the healthful action of every part of the body politic. There the rich and the poor can be brought together in a way that shall bless both. The high can be taught condescension, and the low self-respect, without the operation of Agrarian laws, or the adoption of any measure to blot out the necessary distinctions and gradations of life.

5. The due observance of the Sabbath is a distinguished blessing to nations.

On this subject the Bible speaks too plainly to be misunderstood. This holy book assures us, that there can be no such thing as permanent success by taking counsel against the Lord ; and that no people can abandon his Sabbath without being abandoned by him. We have here, moreover, a

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