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sence! How delightful is this prospect ! how all-sustaining is this hope! And as years in. crease, as life declines, his desire after perfected holiness grows stronger and stronger; until it overcomes his fear of death, and weakens the fondest ties which link him to earth. He is ready to leave all around him, and to press through all before him, in order that he may be separated from sin and be completely assimilated to the likeness of Christ. “We shall be like Him!" is the thought—the glorious thoughtwhich makes heaven so precious in his estimation. He longs more for purity than he does for rest. He wants to be holy, sinless, perfected.

His desire will soon be granted, his hope realized. “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness; for they shall be filled.” Filled ? Satisfied ? Yes. When? In part now, in completeness hereafter. In heaven they hunger no more, neither thirst any more: they are restored to the image of their God, and are faultless before his throne.

And then how delightful to the thoughtful and inquiring Christian-and every Christian ought to sustain this character is the assurance that in a future state our knowledge will be greatly increased. In this world how limited are our highest acquirements! We are like children playing on the sea-shore, and diverting our

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selves, now and then finding a smoother pebble, or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lies all undiscovered be

But what we know not now, we shall know hereafter. Now we see through a glass darkly; now we know but in part: but then we shall see face to face, and know even as we are known. Many deeply interesting and important questions which are unanswered now, will be solved then. . Many difficulties which perplex us now, will be explained then. How numerous are the mysteries in Providence, both in connexion with our own history, and with the history of others, which will then be unravelled ! How varied are the mysteries in religion which will then be clear to us as the light of noonday! And our knowledge will be ever increasing, The first glance into eternity will not reveal to us all that it has to unfold. We shall be always learning something new; continually making fresh discoveries of the wisdom and power and goodness of God. And this without weariness, without effort, without disappointment.

Associated with the perfected development, and probable augmentation of our intellectual powers, is the noble and uninterrupted service in which we shall be engaged above. Alas! how feeble and how poor are our best attempts now for the fulfilment of God's will, and the promotion of his glory! How little, compara




tively, have we done; how little can we do to make him known and loved among our fellow

Frequently do we mourn weakness and apparent uselessness, and feel that we are indeed unprofitable servants. But in heaven our service will be vigorous, perpetual, untiring. There the weary will be at rest, not because they cease to labour, but because labour brings no fatigue; and they that “have entered into rest,” will find this to be their rest, that "they rest not day and night.”*

Each glorified servant will doubtless be occupied in the manner which is most accordant with his individual bias and qualification. As the cherubim and seraphim are supposed to have their separate and appropriate offices, though all stand round the throne, so we may expect that holy engagements will be distributed in amazing diversity among the white-robed saints. But this will be the delight, that each one occupies his own, his proper, his favourite employment--that for which his being is made;

nerve strained; no part burdened; no power taxed; but all easy, enjoyable, delicious, the very part he would have chosen; the part he loves; the part he can do best, assigned to him for ever and ever. And in this, his own proper province, each one will exercise his whole perfected being. Whatever he loves, he


* Rev. iv. 8.

will understand, and whatever he understands, he will love; and both his mind and his will will take effect through the instrumentality of a body which is in complete unison with his spirit; never cumbering it, never darkening it, but instant and capable to do everything which the thought desires or the heart suggests; so that it will be a perfectly intelligent affection, performing without diminution, and without delay, all it thinks and all it feels. Then shall we understand, in that entire concurrence of all the properties which make the creature, what is the meaning of that service of which Christ spoke, when he said, “God is a Spirit; and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.**

And as we think of all the high functions and happy services of those in glory, shall we not remember those loved ones among their number who were once co-workers with us here; and rejoice in the thought that we shall, ere long, share in their holy occupations, and participate in their fadeless joys? The communion of saints on earth is sweet, but what will it be in heaven? Here there is much to mar and interrupt it; there it will be perfect and perpetual. We shall be associated with “ the glorious company of the apostles, the goodly fellowship of the prophets, and the noble army

* John iv. 24.

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of martyrs;" we shall sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of God. We shall share in the high and holy converse of those esteemed by us on earth for the beautiful graces and gifts which adorned their character, and become intimately acquainted with others, long endeared to us by their labours and their worth, but who, through time, or varied circumstances, were personally unknown to us. And there will be no discord, no prejudices, no rivalry, to disturb the harmony of our intercourse. We shall dwell together as the children of one Father; as the brethren of one family; as the loved and loving inhabitants of one eternal home.

But dearer, far dearer, than the thought of this complete and tender sympathy with all the redeemed in glory, is the prospect of that perfect and constant communion with our Saviour which his promises now unfold to our view. “I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.”

Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me.** Well might one of Christ's tried and honoured servants, in the simple meditations which she penned as she waited for her summons to pass over the river, write, “ To be where thou art,

* John xiv. 3 ; xvii. 24.

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