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they are distant, and are dependent for a thousand things which can be produced in the one, but which cannot be produced in the other. Formerly, when men had fewer artificial wants, and when the facilities of commerce were less, they were far more independent; for Assyria, and Persia, and ancient Germany, and Gaul, were far less dependent on other nations, and would feel the effects of any change in other nations, far less than Great Britain and the United States, or even France and Russia, would now. The tendency of things is to increase the dependence, and to make the nations of the earth one great brotherhood.

There have been two ways of endeavouring to secure a safe and prosperous intercourse among nations :--by the force of arms, and hy treaties of commerce and of peace; by the dread of the sword, and by mutual faith. The ancients relied mainly on the former; and seemed to regard a treaty as secure only so far as there was dread of the armed legions, or the war-galley. Rome had little confidence in the fidelity of the nations that were reduced to her control as provinces, except as they understood that if they were not faithful, the Roman legions would soon thunder at the gates of their cities.

The course of events, the tendency of society, is leading the world to repose on another kind of security in the intercourse between nations. We indeed endeavour to blend the two things still-to intimidate, and to secure confidence, and there is a sort of reliance on both; but there is a growing sense that the former is unnecessary, and that our main dependence is on the latter. What merchant is there that sends a ship from one of our ports to Calcutta, or Canton, who ever thinks of the armed vessels that float in distant seas as a reason why he may commit his property safely to the chances of commerce? What is it that holds the commercial world together, and renders commerce safe ? Is it our navy, our army, or is it the faith of treaties? You may say, perhaps, that those treaties would not be regarded if an armed power were not at hand to enforce them; but that remains to be

The truth is, that the nations are depending more and more on what is for their mutual interests, and on the faith of treaties; and are looking with more and more jealousy on any armed interference, and more aversion on any effort to secure conmercial advantages by superior force of arms. The world is to be held together by confidence, and not by the terror of arms; and the sacredness of plighted faith is to take the place of the

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sword.

Let any intelligent man reflect how much at this moment the commerce of our own country and of the rest of the world is secured by treaty, by plighted faith, and he will see the force and the value of the observations which I am making. There is almost no nation-none with whom a treaty would be of value-with whom such a treaty of commerce does not exist. There is almost no land, no port even, where we have not a consulnot an armed man at the head of embattled legions; not a man with the emblazonments of war-the epaulette and the sword,—but a simple, plain, unostentatious citizen--usually of plain dress and plain manners--the fit representative of a peaceful treaty, and the exponent of the faith of nations. What is right to be done in the land where he is, it is presumed will be done; if wrong has been committed toward any of the citizens of his own land, he presumes there will be a disposition to redress it; and though he may fcel indeed, and be assured, that the entire power of his country would be ready to enforce what is right if it is denied, yet how rare a thing it is that there is any allusion to such power in regulating commercial intercourse.

Suppose, now, all this were to come to an end. Suppose no further reliance .could be placed on treaties and international compacts. Is there any form of mischief that could be done in this world so great as to disturb this confidence between nations, this faith in compacts? If it were done, if it were felt that there were no reliance to be placed on any treaty hereafter, even with all the armed force that you could send, is there a vessel that would leave this port, or any other part of our land, to bring back the productions of distant climes? Could the commerce of the world survive such a destruction of confidence?

(4.) We may apply the remark respecting the value of confidence, or faith, to the administration of a government. . We have seen its value in a family, in the commercial world, in the intercourse of nations. It is an obvious remark that it is of no less value in the administration of a government, in the enacting and execution of the laws, in a judicial transaction. Peace and harmony, and in connexion with them all forms of prosperity, depend wholly on the degree of confidence that shall be reposed in the administration of a government, or the decision of a court. You may be certain, indeed, that a sheriff or a marshal has power to summon an armed force to his aid, but you are not induced by that to pay your taxes or your custom-house duties, or to submit to the judgment of a court. You calmly acquiesce, because you have confidence in the general working—the equitableness of the institutions of your country. Such confidence may be reposed in a judicial opinion that a nation shall acquiesce in it, though conflicting claims of the highest order may be involved ; the laws of states may have come in collision; and property to an amount which no one can estimate may be at stake.

Our whole land is dependent every day on confidence in the government; on confidence in the judges; on confidence in the general virtue of the people; on confidence in the excellence of our institutions. There is not a wheel of the government that could move for a moment if it were not for this. No one of us would entrust a letter to the mail, no one of us would carry a cause before any constituted tribunal, or even submit it to an arbitration.

(5.) We are prepared now to apply the remark to the main thing pertaining to the subject before us--the government of God. The demand in the Bible is, that man shall repose confidence in leis Maker, for “ without faith it is impossible to please him.” The inquiry which we have had in view has been, What is the reason why faith under his government has such a primacy, and is of so much value?

Now it is obvious that the value of confidence is as great in God's government as in any other, and may be as great in the universal family, embracing all worlds, over which he presides, as in the much smaller families with which we are conversant. But it should also be added, that to an extent elsewhere proportionably unknown the government of God is one of confidence, not of force. With all power in his arm, and with all resources to bind, and fetter, and restrain, and punish, at his command, still that which he most relies on in his administration is not force, but love and confidence. It is in every way probable that that is the only thing on which reliance is now placed in heaven in controlling the pure and happy minds there, and that vast as they know the power of God to be, they are not restrained by that, but by the all-controlling influence of affection. They have confidence in God-in his wisdom and his goodness--in the equity of his laws and in the principles of his administration; and this is all that is needed to preserve order, and harmony, and peaceful obedience iu heaven. For

Love is the golden chain that binds

The happy souls above.

The thing, too, on which reliance was placed in Paradise to secure obedience was confidence. There was no force employed there. There were no walls built around it which man could not overleap. There were no cherubim with flaming swords to prevent the egress of man, as there were, after his apostacy, to forbid his return. As long as confidence in God remained, man was happy.

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When that failed, he was ruined; and the want of confidence in God was there, as it ever has been since, the source of all the woes that man has ev.perienced. With strict philosophical accuracy, all the woes which have come upon the race have arisen from a want of confidence in God as the just moral Governor of the world. Man has no confidence in his law, in his goodness, in his truth, in his promises, in his threatenings. In his qualifications for empire. He has no such confidence in him as to submit to his teachings; to bow reverently to his will where his dealings are mysterious; to resign himself to him in his trials; to embrace his promises, when he offers heaven to him; to feel alarm, and to turn from his sins, when he threatens the punishment of hell. Even now, with all our external sources of trouble and woe, with all the sorrows and ills of poverty, want, sickness, bereavement, and dreaded death, this would be a happy world if man had confidence in God; for the moment you can infuse into the bosom of a sufferer, no matter whether in bereavement, on a sick bed, or in any other form of woe, confidence in God, that moment you have soothed the anguish of the soul, and diffused through the bosom peace and joy.

I will ask your attention, in view of the reasoning pursued in this discourse, only to one thought of a practical nature suggested by the subject. It is, that infidelity, or unbelief, as a speculative or practical matter, is not a harmless thing. It is often supposed to be so.

It is regarded as a mere matter of speculation; a thing in reference to which the utmost freedom of the mind may be innocently indulged; a thing in which you do others no wrong, for you deprive them of no property by it, and suppose that you do nothing to sap the foundation of their happiness.

But if the views suggested in this discourse are correct, nothing can be more unfounded than this opinion. Is that a harmless system which, if it came into your family, would unsettle all the confidence which you have in your wife, and all the confidence which your children have in you as a father? Is he an innocent man who would unsettle all confidence in a commercial house, in a bank, in a lawyer, in a physician, in a bench of judges? Would that be an innocent system which would breathe suspicion in the community on the character of every minister of the gospel, and every professor in a college, and every teacher in a school? And if you may suppose that a man of capital should establish a system of agencies all over the land, and have them wholly under his control, and that the design should be by a well-arranged scheme of operations to destroy all confidence, say in every merchant, and every monied institution, would you say that that was a harmıless system of operations ? And suppose that a man should come into your family and unsettle all the confidence of your children in God, and in the principles of virtue and sound morals, and in that holy volume which you regard as the foundation of all just views of morals,-shall we regard him as a harmless man, and his opinions as a matter of no consequence? Or suppose, by an extended system of agencies, by the facilities of the press, by his power of scattering pamphlets and books all over the land, he should pursue an extended scheme of operations to destroy all the confidence of man in God as a moral Governor, and in his law, and in the principles of virtue, and in the foundations of morality; that should tend to destroy the confidence which the poor, the afflicted, the oppressed, and the dying repose in God their Saviour; which should leave them to suffer without support, and to feel that they are “in a forsaken and fatherless world," and to die without hope-will you say that such a system is harmless? Why more so than when your malignant agent establishes a system with a view of unsettling the confidence in every merchant and monied institution throughout the land? Is confidence in the foundations of morals, and confidence in God as the righteous moral Governor of the world, of less importance than in a man or in a bank? The perpetrator of the deepest mischief in this world is the man who lives to unsettle confidence. Let my enemy come, if he wishes, and take the little property which my hands have earned; let him come and strike me on one cheek and on the other; let him take my coat and my cloak also ; let him turn me out from my happy and peaceful home, a penniless wanderer on the face of the earth ;but let him not come and destroy the confidence which my wife reposes in me, and I in her; let him not come and unsettle the foundations of moral principle in which I have endeavoured to ground my children ; let him not seek to alienate our confidence in each other and in our God. Poor, and penniless, and cold, and naked, and with no certain dwelling-place, I should wander with my family with one source of pure happiness, undisturbed, if they trusted in me, and I in them, and all in God; but in the most splendid palace that imperial wealth could build and adorn, I could never be happy if confidence in them, and in my Maker and my Saviour, were blasted and destroyed.

Nor is unbelief, as a practical personal matter, more harmless. Sinner, it is not an innocent thing that you have no confidence, no faith in the God that made you. You wrong him; you wrong your own soul. There is no being that is so worthy of your confidence as he; none that has so high a claim. And how can you

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