The life of those who dwell in the secret place of the Most High may be called a Hidden Life, because the animating principle, the vital or operative element, is not so much in itself as in another. It is a life grafted into another life. It is the life of the soul, incorporated into the life of Christ; and in such a way, that, while it has a distinct vitality, it has so very much in the sense, in which the branch of a tree may be said to have a distinct vitality from the root.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

God's Testimony in His Providences

But God has a testimony also or witness for himself in his providences; in other words, in all events which take place, especially when considered in their moral aspects and relations. The history of nations and individuals furnishes a series of facts, from which, if we could get it from no other source, may be deduced the general proposition, that all actions, which are not merely instinctive, have a moral character; and are attended with a moral retribution. We do not say, that the adjustment of reward and punishment to the moral merit and demerit of actions is entirely perfect in the present life; but it is so much so, as to leave no doubt of a moral government and a moral governor. It is true, that the vicious sometimes succeed in life, becoming rich and honored, while the virtuous suffer in poverty and contempt; but it does not follow from this, that the vicious are happy, or that the virtuous are miserable. The virtuous have an inward consolation, which more than compensates for outward adversities; and the vicious, with scarcely an exception, have inward sorrows, which are none the less deep and real for being concealed under the garb of outward prosperity. The history of man, therefore, including the history of nations as well as of individuals, utters its declarations loudly and impressively, in favor of God and of his government.

The Life of Faith (1852) Part 1, Chapter 4.

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