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according to the motives or principles by which he is prompted and governed in the performance of his work. This is the obvious and only legitimate rendering of the text. Let us then, as we proceed in the discussion of this subject, examine not only the works of man, but his motives and principles of action. In many cases, man's works declare his motives and principles; and in other cases, the nature of his work is to be determined upon from his certified (certified by God) and declared principles and motives of action.
1. Let us look at the works of man as they af fect his fellow man. He must have been a poor student of human nature who is not convinced, from man's dealings with his fellow man, that "the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked." We may exclaim now as the apostle did, when, under the guidance of God's holy Spirit, he surveyed the works of man: "Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips; whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness; their feet are swift to shed blood; destruction and misery are in their ways." Man is a selfish being selfish in his dealings with his fellow man. In his intercourse with his brethren of the human family, he is not governed by the golden law, "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself." He loves himself, but he loves his neighbour only when it becomes his interest so to do. Where a man's interests lie, there you find him. Find him not sacrificing those interests for the good of
others, but maintaining them by intrigue, by strife, by dissembling, by lying, by theft, by robbery, by fire, by murder, by slander, by cursing, by piracy, and by war. It is true, there are some exceptions to this statement; but those exceptions are found only when the great principle of self-sacrifice and devotion to the general weal, which the Son of God established in our world, has been planted in the human heart. In looking at the dark, bloody, selfish picture of human nature, we do see here and there a bright spot. A few there are in this world who do not live unto themselves, but unto Him who hath bought them by his precious blood.
"A noiseless band of heavenly soldiery,
To censure, unaccusing mind; to stripes,
We hail with joy and gratitude every such instance of self-sacrifice, wherever it may be found. We pray that the number of heaven's patriots on earth may be increased, till all this mighty mass of intellect, that now throngs and agitates our world, shall be redeemed and consecrated to God. But we are contemplating man without the gospelwe are contemplating human nature as it is now, and has been for near six thousand years—selfish, cruel, bloody, murderous. What are the works of man in this world? Ask yonder consecrated spot, where a nation's birthright was first proclaimed. Hear its tale of oppression, of unrighteous exaction, of national revenge and assassination. Ask its places of justice, where guilty man is weighed in the balance of human judgment and found wanting. Ask every bolt on your stores, and every lock on your houses, what the works of man are.. Ask yonder almshouse to tell you the dark history of most of its inmates. Ask yonder prison why it rears its granite walls, and drives its everlasting bolts, and hangs its iron gates. Ask the slave ship, with its chained, enslaved, weeping, groaning, suffocating, exiled captives. Go to the inquisition, and ask its mangled, tortured, butchered millions, what is the work of man. Let the wheel and the guillotine tell their tale of man's infernal cruelty. Stand on the field of battle, and hear its dying
groans, its widows' sighs, and its orphans' cries. See its victims frozen to death on the Alps, or whitening the plains of Waterloo, or drenching with their blood Bunker Hill. Go to France, and see the works of Voltaire blotting out her Sabbaths, burning her sanctuaries, stabbing her priesthood, flooding her metropolis with human gore. Go to Juggernaut—to Ganges' dark stream-to the cruel dominions of Africa, India, China—to our western wilds, and hear the mighty tale of human wrong and suffering. Go where you will, you find man a selfish being, intent upon the destruction of his species-nay, upon the destruction of himselfif it may promote his present interests and gratifi
2. But let us look at the work of man-at his motives and principles, as they stand related to God. In all that we have said of man, we have regarded him only in his intercourse with man. But in all his works, in all his motives, in all his principles, he is accountable to God. God has claims upon him, which he may not resist with impunity. God has laws, which he may not violate on pain of death. The great code of laws by which man is governed, and every other moral agent, is summed up in a few words by the best expounder of heaven's statute book, the Son of God. It is this: Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and thy neighbour as thyself. This is man's duty. This is the only law that can so govern the human mind as to secure its everlasting holiness and happiness. This law obeyed,
and this world would be a happy world. This law obeyed, and there never would have been any discussion in our world whether there is such a place as hell for guilty, ruined man. This law protects the interests of men, angels, and God. This law binds the dominions of God together in one vast brotherhood. This law kept, and all is safe, holy, happy-this law violated, and all is ruin, misery, sinful. But this law needs some penalty to enforce it, otherwise it would be mere advice. It would not be law. Whoever heard of a law without a penalty. There is not such a thing even among the imperfect tribunals of earth. The penalty, too, must be in proportion to the magnitude of the interests which the law is intended to protect. If it is to protect the throne of an infinite God, its penalty must be infinite. If the precept is infinite, the penalty must be infinite. Otherwise, the penalty will not be adequate to the precept. Wherever the precept goes, it must be attended with a penalty sufficient to enforce it. Obedience to this law is the best thing, and disobedience the worst thing. Violation of this law fills the universe with the greatest possible evils, and the observance of it secures to the universe the greatest possible good. If so, then its reward must be the greatest possible goodeven eternal life; and its curse the greatest possible evil-eternal death. This is a penalty in accordance with the precept; the one is equal to the other. This is the perfection of law; and God being perfect, must have a perfect law, even such a law as we have described, and with such such a