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knoweth that ye have need of all these things.' And then again as to spiritual blessings, is it not said, " Faithful is He that calleth you, who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ?” Then ought it not to be yours to say, 'I will go in the strength of the Lord God. God is able to make all grace abound toward me; and that grace shall be sufficient for me.' Yes, for all things, things temporal, and things spiritual, God is pledged to you. Cast, then, as you are exhorted, “cast all
cast all your care upon Him, for he careth for you.
2. I will remark, if we are persuaded that the Lord will provide, then how should this have the effect of making us determined in following the path of duty, leaving consequences all with Him. The thought of possible consequences, how often is this a snare to Christians.
True, says one, 'I see my duty, my path is plain, but if I do my duty, what distress, trouble, loss, and perplexity shall I entail on myself:-how men will misconstrue my motives : how my friends will be offended : how my prospects will be blighted ; I see nothing short of ruin to follow.'
Alas, alas, have we then forgotten that the Lord will provide ? Have we found reason to distrust his word? Is it so, that we cannot leave results, and consequences, in his hand ? Not such was Abraham's conduct. Every thing was against him in doing what God prescribed. 'Slay my son, my son Isaac? what a deed! What a deed for a father to execute! What will the world think of me! what will it think of my God Himself! Besides, Isaac ! all the promises, promises so long given, all are bound up in Isaac ; if I slay Isaac, my hopes are ruined, and God's promises must fail.' It would have been very natural for Abraham to reason in this way, and from a fear of consequences hesitate to do as God required. But no: the command was plain. He had only to obey. It was not for him to think of consequences.
God would see to them. So, brethren, it must be with us. Cannot we trust God? Is He not sufficiently mighty, and sufficiently wise, to arrange matters, so that no harm shall come to us in duty's path? No real harm ? What we fear as evil, may never come; or, if it comes, instead of an evil, it may turn out in the end to be a positive good. At all events, if we know that the Lord will provide, that He will undertake to order all things well, then surely we have nothing to do but obey his will, and leave all events with Him.
3. I will add one more remark. If the Lord will provide, then what encouragement does this give to his people to believe, that the means they employ for any appointed end, shall not be in vain. This is the holy use of the doctrine of God's foreknowledge and foreordaining care.
• The Lord will provide,' says the man who would abuse all precious truth, therefore I may be negligent.' "The Lord will provide,' says the devout believer, therefore I will be diligent: diligent in my worldly calling, diligent in my Christian duty, diligent in using all means for
my temporal and spiritual welfare, for I know that wisdom, power, and love, are watching over me, and how certain it is that my Almighty Father will cause by his providing care that all events shall issue well for me. And so the truth of our text becomes again a principle of action. It makes all true children of God happy and active, from the persuasion that He will overrule all in goodness and faithfulness for them.
JOSHUA XXIII. 14.
AND, BEHOLD THIS DAY I AM GOING THE WAY OF ALL THE
EARTH: AND YE KNOW IN ALL YOUR HEARTS, AND IN ALL YOUR SOULS, THAT NOT ONE THING HATH FAILED OF ALL THE GOOD THINGS WHICH THE LORD YOUR GOD SPAKE CONCERNING YOU; ALL ARE COME TO PASS UNTO YOU, AND NOT ONE THING HATH FAILED THEREOF.
THESE were the words of Joshua, the captain of Israel. He was now old and stricken in age. In his early days it had been his lot, and a happy lot it was, to act as the personal attendant on Moses, the man of God. He was Moses' minister. And when Moses died, Joshua was appointed by the Lord to succeed him, and to him was given the honor of leading the tribes of Israel into their long promised inheritance. Under his guidance they crossed the Jordan. At his direction they compassed Jericho seven times, till the walls of the city fell down to the ground. At his desire the sun stood still, and the moon stayed, while Israel fought with the Amorites, and hasted not to go down until the people had avenged themselves upon their enemies. Under his command the armies of Israel went forth conquering and to conquer; one city and people after another being overcome, till they found themselves masters of the land of Canaan, and all that God had sworn concerning that land to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, they saw fulfilled in themselves.
“ The Lord gave unto Israel,” it is said, “ all the land which He sware to give unto their fathers : and they possessed it, and dwelt therein. And the Lord gave them rest round about, according to all that He sware unto their fathers : and there stood not a man of all their enemies before them : the Lord delivered all their enemies into their hand. There failed not aught of any good thing which the Lord had spoken unto the house of Israel ; all came to pass.
About seventeen years had since elapsed, and Joshua found himself declining. He felt that he had not long to live. And loving his nation most truly, he resolved to make one more effort to serve them, by calling them around him, and delivering to them a parting charge, an affectionate and faithful exhortation.
“ He called for all Israel, and for their elders, and for their heads, and for their judges, and for their officers,” and then in the midst of the assembled congregation, he proceeded to address them, reminding them of what the Lord had done for them, bidding them to remember what He had promised still to do on their behalf, and entreating them, as they prized the favor and protection of their God, to cleave unto Him with purpose of heart.
of heart. It is at the close of this ad