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[Preached at Bombay, on Whitsunday, May 22; at Colombo, September 18; and at Calcutta, on Advent Sunday, November 27, 1825; in aid of the Incorporated Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts.]

ACTs ii. 38, 39.

The promise is unto you and to your children and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.

On the nature and certainty of that illustrious event which we are assembled this day to commemorate; on the personality and divinity of that mighty Spirit whose advent has been now re

This Sermon is published agreeably to a promise made by his Lordship to the several Archidiaconal Committees formed upon its delivery. It is printed exactly as it was originally preached at Bombay. The body of the Discourse was substàntially the same when delivered at Colombo and Calcutta, the introduction only, which relates to the day of Pentecost, being altered as the several occasions required. It was the intention of the Bishop to deliver it again at Madras on his return from his visitation of the Peninsula. It is unnecessary to relate the sad event by which this intention was frustrated.-Calcutta Editor.


corded; of the manner in which His testimony confirmed the truth of our Saviour's mission from the Father; and on the blessed support, consolation, and protection, which the universal Church, and each individual member of it have since continued to receive from Him; on these natural and usual topics of discussion on the day of Pentecost, on which it is reasonable to suppose the majority of Christians informed, and on which I have abundant reason to believe my present audience well instructed, it is not now my intention to address you. There is another consideration, less obvious, or less frequently insisted on, but which arises no less naturally from the circumstances under which the Holy Ghost was given; and which, in connection with those circumstances, I shall endeavour to impress on your conviction; I mean the diffusive and universal character of the revelation of God's will through His Son; the interest which every nation under Heaven possesses in the Christian covenant; and the obligation which rests upon every believer to assist and forward, in his station and according to his ability, the extension of that knowledge whereby he is himself made wise unto salvation, the communication of those spiritual riches which he has himself received so freely.

That the message of mercy brought by Christ to mankind was the common heritage of all who partake in our human nature; that to the Shiloh who should come, the gathering of the nations was to be; and that, in the promised descendant of Abra

ham's loins all the tribes of the earth were to be called blessed, are truths so broadly stated in Scripture, and so universally received by those who defer to scriptural authority, that it seems needless, at this time of day, and among those who are not professed unbelievers, to prove that the religion of His Son was designed by God as the religion of all mankind; that it was the will of the Most High that His knowledge should cover the earth as the waters cover the sea; and that the false systems and false divinities of former ages should be consigned, by the disclosure of a holier and sublimer creed, to the custody of oblivion, of neglect and scorn; to the moles of their consecrated grottos, and the bats of their dark and deserted temples.

In conformity with these principles, and with innumerable passages in the ancient prophetic writings, in which these principles are developed and confirmed, we find our Lord, while on earth, announcing to his Jewish disciples His anticipation of other sheep of a different and distant fold; we find the same Lord, when already risen from the dead, sending forth His disciples, so soon as they should have received power from on high, to preach the Gospel to every creature; we find the promised Comforter, in the miraculous glory which He shed forth, and the miraculous gifts which He communicated, assuming a form and confirming a faculty, of which the one was without meaning, and the other without utility, except as symbols and instruments of diffusive light and knowledge; and

we find, lastly, in the counsel given by St. Peter to his alarmed and conscience-smitten countrymen, that the promise, consequent on baptism, of remission of sins, and the gifts and comforts of God's Spirit, was not only to them and to their children, but to as many as God should call from the furthest regions of the earth, and the nations previously most estranged from the knowledge and worship of Jehovah.

It may be thought, indeed, that on this avowed intention, and these repeated injunctions of the Most High, the duty of endeavouring the conversion of the heathen might rest with sufficient security even abstracted from every other consideration of charity to the heathen themselves, and the desire, which is natural to every well constituted mind, of imparting to others those blessings which we ourselves most value.

That man would be no dutiful servant, that man would be any thing but an affectionate son, who, even without a positive command, and with no more than a bare intimation of the wishes of his father or his lord, should hesitate to employ the best exertions in his power to fulfil his blameless desires, and perform his righteous pleasure; and still less are the express injunctions of a parent or a superior to be slighted, because we ourselves do not at once perceive the expediency of an order, or apprehend, without having made the trial, its entire success impossible. When David expressed, though it were but a transient wish, to drink of the

fountain which welled up beside the gate of Bethlehem, his valiant men rushed forward, at once, sword in hand, to forestall his commands, and brought back from the thickest of the enemy, in their helmets, that blood-bought water which their sovereign had barely longed after. And the history of every age is full of illustrious examples of obedience and loyalty, in which the severest labours have been undergone, and the most appalling dangers encountered, in execution of commands, the motives of which have been but imperfectly known, or the policy of which has been even more than doubted. Let but the professed followers of God and His Son entertain the same desire to please their Lord which was displayed by Abishai and his comrades; let but the professed believers in Christ exhibit the same trust in His wisdom and deference to His authority, which is claimed by every public man from his soldiers and subordinate functionaries, and we may be assured that the attempt to communicate a knowledge of the truth to the Gentiles will be no longer neglected or opposed as an unauthorised or chimerical labour.

If, indeed, that be true, which no professing Christian will gainsay; if the religion of Christ be acknowledged as that form of doctrine which most of all represents God as He is, and in that sublime and amiable character which the aweful Judge, the mighty King, the most merciful Father of all, maintains with His subjects and His offspring; if it

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