15 SEPTEMBER (PREACHED HARVEST 14 SEPTEMBER 1766)
The Lord, the Giver
‘For she did not know that I gave her corn, and wine, and oil, and multiplied her silver and gold, which they prepared for Baal.’ Hosea 2:8
SUGGESTED FURTHER READING: Psalm 65:1–13
It is the Lord that gives corn. How many plough and sow and reap without lifting up their hearts to him either in prayer or in praise. It is looked on as a thing of course. We think there is some necessary connection between sowing and reaping, but it all depends upon the Word and blessing of God who has appointed our provision to come this way. The clouds would drop down food for us as for Israel if the Lord should command, and without his command the earth could no more yield corn than the water. The dispensation of the weather is in his hand. He causes his sun to shine and sends his rain, and this he manages in such proportion that the end is generally answered. This likewise depends upon his promise, and mercy it was to make such a promise to those who are so unworthy of any good thing (Genesis 8:22). It is dangerous—who can tell how soon he may be provoked to punish? He commandeth the sun and it shineth not. He restraineth the rain. He has hailstorms and lightning at his beck. What havoc these have sometimes made in other places, we have heard. I am almost afraid to say what he can do, lest he should see fit to confirm the word by giving you a mournful proof that his ministers do not speak lightly of them when they warn you of the error of your ways.
While I view the plenteous grain
Let the praise be all the Lord’s,
As it ripens on the stalk;
As the benefit is ours!
May I not instruction gain,
He, in seasons, still affords
Helpful, to my daily walk?
Kindly heat, and gentle flowers:
All this plenty of the field
By his care the produce thrives
Was produced from foreign seeds;
Waving o’er the furrowed lands;
For the earth itself would yield
And when harvest-time arrives,
Only crops of useless weeds.
Ready for the reaper stands.
SERMON: HOSEA 2:8 [2/2]