3. The subjects of Meditation. The word of God furnishes abundant matter for meditation. This was the constant delight of the Psalmist. The 119th Psalm consists almost entirely of meditations upon the word of God. But, in our regular seasons of fixed and solemn meditation, you will find assistance and profit from fixing your mind on some particular portion of divine truth; and carrying it out in its various relations and applications. That these subjects may be always at hand, without loss of time in selecting and arranging them, I here suggest a considerable variety of topics, with references to passages of Scripture calculated to illustrate or enforce the subjects. It is not designed that you should confine yourself strictly to these, but to use them as an aid to your own efforts. They are intended as mere suggestions, and are therefore both imperfectly stated and partially carried out; One great difficulty, in this exercise, is, always to be able to fix the mind on some portion of truth, in such a manner as to secure variety, and to contemplate truth in its proper proportions. And probably this kind of meditation is often neglected, for want of time to select a subject, and fix the attention upon it. If Christians were always in a lively frame, perhaps this would not be necessary. The mind would spontaneously revert to spiritual things. But, humiliating as is the fact, it is nevertheless true, that our minds are often dull upon those subjects which ought always to operate as the touchstone of spiritual feeling. Yet, as right feelings can be produced only in view of truth, the way to overcome this dulness is to direct the attention to objects calculated to call forth these emotions.
I have arranged these subjects in such a manner, that, if taken in course, they will lead to the contemplation of divine truth, with some reference to its proper proportions, although they do not completely cover the ground. Any particular topic, however, can be selected, according to the circumstances or inclination of the individual. Many of the subjects are divided under various heads; and, in some cases, one or two heads may perhaps be found sufficient for one season of meditation.
I. CHARACTER AND ATTRIBUTES OF GOD.
1. Self-existence—being underived. How this can be proved from reason. How this truth is recognized in Scripture. Ex. 3:14. Rev. 1:8. Jer. 10:10. Dan. 6:26. All other existence derived from him. Ps. 33:6. John 1:3. Col. 1:16, 17. Heb. 11:13.