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things as an unconcerned spectator, but by his invisible and almighty hand, guides and governs all his creatures and all their actions; and in a word, that he is the first and supreme cause of all that lives, and moves, and exists in this, and every other world. I now proceed,

II. To offer some considerations in favour of such a particular providence, as we have just described. Here it may be observed,

1. That it appears from the nature of providence, that it must be particular. We cannot conceive of a general, without a particular providence. The very idea of providence supposes the preservation and government of the world. If God exercises any kind of care or concern over it, it must be in upholding all things in existence, and in directing the conduct of creatures and the events, which respect their happiness or misery. And if this be the nature of providence, it must be particular and extend to every individual creature, and every individual event. For we can no more conceive, that one creature can uphold itself in existence, than another. If one creature needs the divine support, then all creatures need it. And if all creatures need the divine support at one time, then they need it at all times. It involves an evident absurdity to suppose, that any created object or created agent should be one moment independent of its creator for support and preservation ; because independence is an incommunicable attribute of the Deity, which he can no more give to any of his creatures, or to any of his works, than he can give them eternal and uncaused existence. Since then all created things are necessarily dependent; God's preserving providence must respect aud support them all individually. The small dust of the balance as much needs the constant agency of divine providence to support its existence, as the whole material system. The drop of the bucket as constantly needs the supporting hand of God, as the whole collection of waters in the deep and mighty ocean. The smallest animal or insect as con

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stantly needs the preserving power and agency of God, as all the species collectively. And

every man in

particular, must depend upon a divine and almighty influence to continue his existence, as much as the whole human race. The preserving providence of God, therefore, must of necessity be particular, and extend to every created nature and object, without a single exception. And so must the governing providence of God. For if one creature needs to be under a divine direction, so does another. "If one event needs to be under a divine direction, so does another. And if one secondary cause needs a divine influence to give it energy to produce its effects, so does another. In short, if there be any need of a divine providence to uphold this world, there is the same need of a divine dence to govern it. And if there be any need of a divine providence to uphold and govern it in general, there is the same need of a divine providence to govern every thing in it, in particular. Every argument in favour of a general providence, is equally pertinent and forcible to prove a particular providence.

2. That the supreme and ultimate end of divine providence proves it to be particular. If God exercises any providence or government over the world, it is to answer some particular end, and the same, no doubt, for which he created it. This is the dictate of reason as well as scripture. Hence that ascription of praise to the creator in the fourth chapter of Revelation. “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory, and honour, and power, for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are, and were created.” And the apostle says, " That of him, and through him, and

66 to him are all things: to whom be glory for ever.” To this may

be added the declaration of Solomon, that 6. God hath made all things for himself.Now, if God's last end in the creation of the world, be his own glory, and if he aims at the same end in the exercise of

providence, then his providence must be particular as well as universal, and concerned in all created objects and events. If he means that the whole creation shall

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promote his glory, then he must exercise not only an universal, but a particular providence over the whole. The whole is always made up of all its parts; and, therefore, in order that the whole creation may promote his glory, he must govern and direct all the parts of it to his supreme and ultimate end. Accordingly, we find, that some great and important events have been connected with and dependenton those that appear,without such a connection, very small and trifling. What important events depended on Joseph's dreams! They finally proved the means of preserving the whole church of God. The dreams of Ahasuerus proved the occasion of searching the records, which occasioned Mordecai's advancement, Haman's overthrow, and the Jews' deliverance from a general massacre. The gaggling of the geese once saved the city of Rome from destruction, by the Gauls. Fabius, the Roman general, who by his wisdom and valour drove Hannibal, the greatest warriour then in the world from the Roman empire, was suffocated by a single hair in a draught of milk. These facts show how necessary it is, that God should exercise a particular as well as a universal providence over every creature, object, and event in this world, in order to make all things promote his own glory, which was his supreme and ultimate end in the creation of all things.

3. The goodness of God requires him to exercise a particular providence over all his creatures. Every creature susceptible of pleasure or pain is a proper object of the divine benevolence. And as all the creatures of God are always open to his all comprehensive view, so he regards them all with equal attention and impartial affection. God is love; and he is good to all, and his tender mercies are over all his works. His goodness disposes him to pay attention to his whole great family, and take particular care of every individual. He stands in the same relation of creator to all his rational and irrational, all his holy and unholy creatures. And though he does not feel the love of complacency towards them all; yet he feels the love of

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benevolence towards every individual, and desires to promote its happiness so far as the good of all permits. His perfect, impartial benevolence, therefore, requires him to exercise not only a general, but particular providence over the smallest, meanest, and vilest creature and object in both the natural, and moral world.

4. The scripture represents God as exercising a particular providence over every material, and immaterial, rational, and irrational creature and object, that he has brought into being. It represents God as governing and controlling every part of the material creation. It says, he causeth the day spring to know his place, and maketh the sun to rise on the evil and on the good. He telleth the number' of the stars, and calleth them by their proper names.

He hath his way in the winds, and in the storms, and the clouds are the dust of his feet. He causes the thunders to lift up their voice, the lightnings to flash, and strike when and where, and whom he pleases. He has the balancing of the clouds, and causeth it to rain on one city, and not on another. He giveth the snow like wool. He scattereth the hoar frost like ashes. He casteth forth his ice like morsels. Who can stand before his cold? He rules the raging of the sea, and -sets bounds to the mighty ocean, saying, hitherto shalt thou come, but no further: and here thy proud waves shall be stayed. He watereth the earth, and causes it to yield its increase. He covers the valleys with corn, and the fields with grass. He gives beauty to the lily, and fragrance to the rose. His providence governs all the inanimate and vegetable world. Nor does he exercise a less particular and influential providence over the animal creation. He gives courage to the horse, strength to the lion, and wisdom to the hawk, and prudence to the ant. He openeth his hand, and satisfieth the desire of every living thing. But he takes a more tender and affectionate care of all mankind, each of whom he values more than the whole animal creation. He fixes the bounds of their habitation, and determines

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the number of their months. He keeps their eyes from tears, their feet from falling, and their souls from death. He governs all their thoughts, intentions, and actions. He gives them all things richly to enjoy. He takes as constant and particular care of every individual of the human race, as if he had but one person in the world to take care of. Such a wise, and powerful, and benevolent, and particular providence does God exercise over all his creatures, and all his works.

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IMPROVEMENT.

1. If God exercises a particular providence over the world and all that is in it; then there can be no such thing as chance, or fate. The old heathen philosophers held the doctrine of fate, though they differed in their opinions of it. Some maintained, that matter had a necessary and eternal existence, and never was created ; and consequently they supposed, that it was not in the power of any intelligent being to govern it so as to prevent either natural or moral evil. Of course they supposed, that natural and moral evils were to be ascribed to chance, or accident, independently of any supreme governour of the world. Another sect of philosophers supposed, that Jupiter, the supreme deity, governed all things according to his own first and immutable decrees, which they called fixt fate, agreeably to the etymology of the word fate, which is derived from the Latin words for, fari, fatum ; that is, spoken. They supposed, that all things happened, just as the supreme deity had determined and said, that they should happen, notwithstanding the desires, the exertions, the hopes and fears, of all inferiour and dependent creatures. Hence they supposed, that all things happened by fatality, and that no event could be brought about, or prevented by any human means. But, if God, who made the world, governs it generally by the instrumentality of men and other subordinate agents; then there is no room for fate, or chance, or any contingent events. Though no denom

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