Observe, 1. Religion lengthens men’s lives and crowns their hopes. What man is he that loves life? Let him fear God, and that will secure him from many things that would prejudice his life, and secure to him life enough in this world and eternal life in the other; the fear of the Lord will add days more than was expected, will add them endlessly, will prolong them to the days of eternity. What man is he that would see good days? Let him be religious, and then his days shall not only be many, but happy, very happy as well as very many, for the hope of the righteous shall be gladness; they shall have what they hope for, to their unspeakable satisfaction. It is something future and unseen that they place their happiness in (Rom. 8:24, 25), not what they have in hand, but what they have in hope, and their hope will shortly be swallowed up in fruition, and it will be their everlasting gladness. Enter thou into the joy of thy Lord. 2. Wickedness shortens men’s lives, and frustrates their hopes: The years of the wicked, that are spent in the pleasures of sin and the drudgery of the world, shall be shortened. Cut down the trees that cumber the ground. And whatever comfort or happiness a wicked man promises himself, in this world or the other, he will be frustrated; for the expectation of the wicked shall perish; his hope shall be turned into endless despair.
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