Acquaint now yourself with him, and be at peace: thereby good shall come to you.
I. THE WAY OF BECOMING ACQUAINTED WITH GOD. There are two kinds of knowledge — speculative and practical, or experimental — resting upon personal acquaintance. Of these two, the experimental is the only solid and satisfactory knowledge; and is as much superior to the ideal as the substance is to the shadow, as the sun in the firmament to a sun painted upon canvas, and as a living man to his picture. The reason of which is that ideal knowledge is not the perception of the things themselves present, but only the forming in our minds the images and pictures of things absent; whereas experimental knowledge is the real perception of the things themselves, present and acting upon us, and communicating themselves and their properties to us. The ideal knowledge which we have of God should excite us to endeavour after the experimental. A penitent sinner, who is sensible of God's mercy in the forgiveness of his sins, who experiences the Divine favour in speaking peace to his soul, has a much better knowledge of the mercy, power, and goodness of God, than all the ideas of these attributes could give him as long as the world lasts. No ideal knowledge can give us either virtue or happiness. There are four ways of becoming acquainted with any person.
1. If he has written anything, to acquaint ourselves therewith. They are generally the truest and liveliest image of the mind.
2. If he be a great person, to get some opportunity of coming into his presence, and to do this as frequently and constantly as we may be permitted.
3. Readily to embrace all opportunities that are offered to us of eating at his table.
4. Living in the house, and conversing with him continually.
II. THE ADVANTAGES AND HAPPY EFFECTS OF THIS ACQUAINTANCE WITH GOD. These are the greatest and noblest human nature is capable of enjoying — peace and tranquillity of mind; happiness by the exercising and perfecting the noblest faculties of the soul, the understanding, and the will. The supreme happiness must consist in contemplating and possessing, in loving and enjoying the supreme Perfection, who is Beauty and Love itself, and "whom truly, to know is eternal life." All happiness, consists in loving and possessing the object of our love.
Parallel VersesKJV: Acquaint now thyself with him, and be at peace: thereby good shall come unto thee.