It is the mercy of God too my hearers that has the past year defended us so remarkably from the pestilence that walketh in darkness and the destruction that wasteth at noon day.  I see some among you indeed who are clothed in the garments of mourning and whose tears of sorrow for departed friends are mingled with your thanksgivings.  But there are fewer of this description than usual: and it is fact well worthy of notice that for most of those called into eternity since the last annual Thanksgiving remaining friends have reason for indulging a hope that they are blessed in heaven.  While among those who are unprepared how few have been called!  What astonishing mercy that such are spared!

     In the third place we hasten to consider briefly God's works of Grace.  By these we mean the execution of that wonderful method of salvation for lost men God has devised by the blood and spirit of his only begotten Son.  When man was created the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy; and when His unheard of plan of slavation was developed those same holy beings raised the song of glory to God in the highest peace on earth and good will to men.  If the works of creation appear great and glorious no less does the work of redemption and even now there is joy in heaven over any repenting sinners.  The redemption of the soul is precious and probably nothing in the works of nature can so illustriously display to the angels in light the glory of their Father as this, nor need we wonder that into this they desire to look.

     Nature with open volume stands

     to spread her Makers praise abroad

     so every labor of his hands

     shows something worthy of a God.