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Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and
comes down from the Father of lights, with whom is no partiality,
neither shadow of turning.

James 1:17.

We shall designate the "good gifts" the blessings we enjoy
here in this life ; the "perfect gifts" those awaiting us in the life
to come. In the words "good gifts" and "perfect gifts," the
apostle comprehends all our blessings, those we have already
received in the present life and those to be ours in the life to come.
I will not now speak particularly of earthly, transient,
and changeable blessings, such as temporal goods, honor, a
healthy body, and others. 

There are many individuals who would give thousands of dollars to
have the sight of both eyes. So much do they prize the blessing of sight,
they would willingly suffer a year's illness or endure other great inconveniences to
obtain it. 

But we shall speak now particularly of the blessings we have
in Christ's resurrection, a subject appropriate to this Easter
season. God has begun the work of edifying us, of building us
up, and will constitute us his own children, his heirs. The great,
glorious gifts of the resurrection are these: the gospel, holy
Baptism, the power of the Holy Spirit, and comfort in all adversity.
What is a slight injury or the loss of some temporal
blessing in comparison with these? What reason has any man
to murmur and to rage when such divine blessings are his, even
here in this life, blessings which none can take away or abridge ?
If you are called on to renounce money, possessions, honor, and
men's favor, remember you have a treasure more precious than
all the honors and all the possessions of the world. When you
see one living in great splendor, in pleasure and presumption,
following his own inclinations, think: I have divine grace enabling
me to know God's will and the work he would have me
do, and all in heaven and earth is mine.

But these do not represent the consummation of resurrection
blessings. We must yet await the real, the perfect gifts. God
has only commenced to work in us ; he will not leave us in this
state. If we continue in faith, God will bring us to the real,
the eternal blessings, called "perfect gifts,"the possession of
which excludes error, stumbling, anger, and any sin whatever.
Look to this future life, when assailed by the world and enticed
to anger or evil lust.


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