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acted a wise part, in that he would be served at his table, with earthen velsels: the which could not but put an additional sweetness in his meals, not to be relished by one born heir to the crown. Can ever meat be so sweet to aný, as to the hungry man! Or can any have such a relish of plenty, as he who has been under pinching straits : The more difficulties the faints have passed through, in their way to heaven, the place will be the sweeter to them, when they came at it. Every happy stroke, struck in the spiritual warfare, will be a jewel in their crown of glory. Each viciory obtained against sin, Satan, and the world, will raise their triumphant joy the higher. The remembrance of the cross will sweeten the crown: and the memory of their travel through the wilderness, will put an additional verdure on the fields of glory; while they walk through them, minding the day, when they went mourning without the fur.
And now that they appear triumphing in white robes, it is a sign they have obtained an honourable peace; such a peace as their enemies can disturb no more. So every thing peculiariy adapted to their militant condition is laid aside. The sword is laid down; and they betake theinfelves to the pen of a ready writer, to commemorate the praises of him, by whom they overcame. Public ordinances, preaching, facraments, thall be honourably laid alide; there is no temple there, Rev. xxi: 22. Sometimes these were sweet to them: but the travellers be. ing all gut home, the inns, appointed for their entertainment by the way, are shut up; the candles are put out, when the sun is risen; and the tabernacle ufed in the wilderness is folded up, when the temple of glory is conne in its room. Many of the faines duties will then be laid aside; as one gives his staff out of his hand, when he is come to the end of his journey. Praying shall then be turned to praising: and, there being no fin to confess, no wants to seek the supply of; confesfion and petition shall be swallowed up in everlasting thanksgiving. There will be no mourning, in heaven; they have sown in tears, the reaping time of joy is come, and God Shall wipe away all tears from their eyes, Rev. xxi. 4. No need of mortification there; and self-exanination is then at an end. They will not need to watch any more; the danger is over. Patience has had its perfect work, and there is no use for it there. Faith is turned into light, and hope is swallowed up in the ocean of ferrible and full enjoymept. All the rebels are subdued, the saints quietly set on their throne; and fo the forces, needful in the time of the spiritual warfare, are disbanded; and they carry on their triumph in profoundest peace.
Laftly, White garments were worn, on festival days, in token of joy. And so thall the saints be clothed in white raiment; for they hall keep an everlasting fabbath to the Lord, Heb. iv. 9. There remaineth therefore a rest (or keeping of a fabbath) to the people of God. Thesabbath, in the esteem of faints, is the queen of days: and they shall have an endless Jabbatism in the kingdom of heaven; so fhall their garments be always white. They will have an eternal rest, with an uninterrupted joy:
for heaven is not à resting place, where men may sleep out an eternity; (there they rest not day nor night) but their work is their rest and continual recreation, and toil and wearinefs have no place there. They rest there in God, who is the centre of their souls. Here they find the complement, or satisfaction of all their defires; having the full enjoyment of God, and uninterrupted communion with him. This is the point, unto the which till the foul come, it will always be restless : bụt, that point reached, it refts; for he is the latt end, and the soul can go no farther. It cannot understand, will, nor desire more; but in him it has what is commensurable to its boundless desires. This is the happy end of all the labours of the faints; their toil and forrows iffue in a joyful rest. The Chaldeans measuring the natural day, put the day first, and the night laft: but the Jews counted the night first, and the day laft. Even so, the wicked begin with a day of rest and pleasure, but end with a night of everlasting toil and forrow: bat God's people have their gloomy night first, and then comes their day of eternal rest. The which Abraham, in the parable, observed to the rich man in hell, Luke xvi. 25. "Son, remember that thou in " thy life-time receivedít thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil “ things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.”
III. If one enquires where che kingdom of the saints lies. It is not in this world; it lies in a better country, that is, an heavenly, (Heb. xi. 16.) a country better than the best of this world; namejy, the heavenly Canaan, Immanuel's land, where nothing is want, ing to complete the happiness of the inhabitants. This is the happy country, bleft with a perpetual spring, and which yieldeih all things for neceflicy, conveniency, and delight. There men thall eat angels food; they shall be entertained with the hidden manna, (Rev. ii. 17.) without being set to the painful gathering of it: they will be fed to the full, with the product of the land falling into their mouths, without the least toil to them. That land enjoys an everlafting day, for there is no night there, Rev. xxi. 25. An eternal fun-fhine beautifies this better country, but there is no scorching heat there. No clouds shall be seen there for ever: yet it is not a land of drought; the trees of the Lord's planting are set by the rivers of water, and shall never want moisture, for they will have an eternal supply of the Spirit, by Jesus Christ, from his Father. This is the couutry from whence our Lord came, and whither he is gone again: the country which all the holy patriarchs and pro
. phets had their eye upon, while on earth; and which all the saints, who have gone before us, have fought their way to; and unto which, the martyrs bave joyfully fwimmed, through a sta of blood, This earth is the place of the saints pilgrimage; that is, their country, where chey find their everlasting relt.
IV. The royal city is that great city, the holy Jerufalen, described, at large, Rev. xxi. 10. to the end of the chapter. (It is crue, rompe learned divines place this city in the earch: but the particulars of
the description seem to me ro favour those most, who point us to the other world for it. The faints shall reign in that city, whose wall is of jasper, (ver. 16.) and the foundations of the wall garnished with all manner of precious stones, (ver. 19.) and the streets of pure gold, (ver. 21.) fo that their feet shall be set on that, which the men of this world let their hearis upon. This is the city God hath prepared for them, Heb. xi. 16. A city that hath foundations, (ver. 10.) A continuing city, (chap. xiii. 14.) which shall stand and flourish, when all the cities of the world are laid in alhes; and which shall pot be moved, when the foundations of the world are overturned. It is a city that never changeth its inhabitants: none of ihem shall ever be removed out of it: for lite and immortality reign there, and no death can enter into it. It is blessed with a perfect and per. petual peace, and can never be in the least disturbed. Nothing from without can annoy it; the gates therefore are not fout at all by day, and there is no night there, Rev. xxi. 25. There can nething from within trouble it. No want of provision there; no fcar. city; ng difcord amongit the inhabitants. Whatever contentiqas are amongst the saints now; no vestige of their former jarrings hall remain there. Love to God, and to one another, fall be perfected; and these of them, who stood at greater distance here, will joyfully embrace and delight in one another there.
y. The royal palace is Christ's Father's horife, in which are many manjions, John xiv. 2. There all the saints dwell for ever. That is the house prepared for all the heirs of glory, even these of them who dwell in the meanest cottage now, or have not where to lay their heads. As our Lord calls hiş faints to a kingdom, he will provide them a house. suitable to the dignity he puts upon them. Heaven will be a convenient, spacious, and glorious house, for those whom the King delightech to honour. Never was a house ! purchased, at so dear a rate as this, being the purchase of the Me. diator's blood; and no less could it be afforded for to them: never was chere so much ado, to fit inhabitants for a house. The faints were, by nature, utterly unfit for this house, and human art and industry could not make them meel for it. But the Father gives the designed inhabitants to his Son, to be by him redeemed: the Son pays the price of their redemption, even his own precious blood; thai, with the allowance of justice, they may have access to the house: and the holy Spirit fanctifies them by bis grace; that they may be mect to come in thither, where no unclean thing can enter. And no marvel, for it is the King's palace, they enter into, (Pfal. xlv, 15.) The house of the kingdom, where the great King keeps his court, where he has bis throne, and shews forth his glory, in a singular manner beyond what mortals can conceive.
VI. Paradise is their Palace-garden. This day shalt thou be with me in paradise, said our Saviour to the penitent thief on the cross, Luke xxiii. 43. Heaven is a paradise for pleasure and delighi,
where there is both wood and water; pure river, of water " df life, clear as cryftal, proceeding out of the throne of God, " and of the Lamb; and of either frue of the river, the tree of “ life, which bears twelvé manner of fruits, and yields ber fruit " every month," Rev. xx1h 1, 2. How happy might innocent Adam have been in the earthly paradise, where tbere was nothing wanting for neceffity, nor delight! Eden was the most pleasant spot of the uncorrupted earth, and paradile the most pleasant spot of Eden; but what is earth in comparison of heaven? The glorified faints are advanced to the heavenly paradise. There they shall not only see, but eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God, Rev. ii. 7. They shall behold the Mediator's glory, and be fatisfied with his goodness. No flaming (word will be there, to keep the way of that tree of life; but they thall freely eat of it, and live for ever. And they shali drink of the river of pleasures, (Psal. xxxvi. 8.) these sweetest and purest pleasures, the which Immanual's land doth afford; and shall swim in an ocean of unmixed delight for evermore.
VII. They shall have royal treasures, fufficient to support the dignity they are advanced unto. Since the street of the royal city is pure gold, and the twelve gates thereof are twelve pearls; their treasure must be of that which is better than gold cr pearl. It is an eternal weight of glory, 2 Cor. iv. 17. O precious treasurel.a treasure not liable to insensible corruption, by moths-or rust; a treasure which none can steel from them, Matth. vi. 20. Never did any kingdom afford iuch a precicus treasure, nor a treasure of such variety : for he that overcometh shall inherit all things, Rev. xxi. 7. No treasures on earth are stored with all things: if they were all put together in one, there would be far more valuable things wanting in that one, than found in it. This then is the peculiar treasure of these kings, who inherit the kingdom of beaven. They thall want nothing, that may contribute to their full fatisfaction. Now they are rich in hope: but then they will have their riches in hand, Now all things are theirs in respect of right:' then all shall be theirs in poffeffion. They may go for ever through Immanuel's land, and behold the glory and riches thereof, with the satisfying though, that all they fee is their own. It is pity these Mould ever be uneasy under the want of earthly good things, who may be sure, they fhall inherit all things at length.
VIII Albiet there is no (material) temple thercin, no mediate serving of God in the use of ordinances, as here on earth; yet, as for this kingdom,“ The Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the si cemple of it,” Rev. xxi. 22. As the temple was the glory of Cangan, fo will the celeit al ceinple be the glory of heaven. The faints, thall be brought in thither as a Royal priesthood, 10 dwell in the house of the Lord for ever; for Jelus Christ will then make every saint " a pillar in che temple of God, and he hall.go no more
out,” « out," (Rev. iii. 12.) as the Priests and Levites did, in their coorfes, go out of the material temple. There the saints shall have the cloud of glory, the divine presence, with most intimate, uninterrupted communion with God: there they shall have Jefus Christ as the true ark, wherein the fiery law shall be for ever hid from their eyes; and the mercy-feat, from which nothing shall be breathed, but everlasting peace and geod-will towards them: the cherubims, the society of holy angels, who hall join with them in eternal admiration of the mystery of Chrift: the golden candlestick, with its seven lamps, for the glory of God doth lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof, Rev. xxi. 23. The incense-altar, in the intercession of Chrift, who ever liveth to make interceffion for them, (Heb. vii. 25.) eternally exhibiting the merits of his death and sufferings, and efficaciouslv willing for ever, that these, whom the Father bath given him, be with him: and the shew-bread table, in the perpetual feast, they fhall have together, in the enjoyment of God. This leads me more particularly to consider,
IX. The Society in this kingdom. What would royal power and authority, enfigns of royalty, richest treasures, and all other advantages of a kingdom, avail without comfortable society? Some crowned heads have had but a forry life through the want of it : their palaces have been buç unto them as prisons, and their badges of honour as chains on a prisoner: while hared of all, they had none they could trust in, or whom they could have comfortable fellowship with. But the chief part of heaven's happiness lies in the blefied society the faints shall have there. For clearing of which, consider these few things:
First, The society of the saints, among themselves, will be no fmall part of heaven's happiness. The communion of saints on earth is highly prized by all these who are travelling through the world unto Zion; and companions in fin can never have such true pleafure and delight in one another, as sometime the Lord's people have in praying together, and converfing about thele things which the world is a franger to. Here the saints are but few in company, at bett: and some of them are so polted, as they seem to theinfelves to dwell alone : having no access to fuch, as they could freely unbofom themselves to, in the matter of their spiritual case. They figh and say, "Wo is me, for I am as when they have gathered the " fummer fruits-there is no cluiter to eat-the good man is peri. “i shed out of the earth,” Mic vij. 1, 2. But in the general affembly of the first-born in heaven, none of all the saints, who ever were, or will be on the earth, shall be misling. They will be all of them together in one place, all posless one kingdom, and all sit down together to the marriage-fupper of the Lamb. Here the best of the faints want not their fintul imperfections, making their fociety less · comfortable: but there they shall be perfect, without spot or wrinkle, or any such thing, Eph. v, 27. And all natural, as well as linful im