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Wherefore he is able to save to the uttermost,, all ruho come
unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them....Heb. vii. 25.
When the strong blasts of temptations blow, the swelling waves of corruptions lift up their heads: satan casts his fiery darts: the thunders of Sinai roar: the law threatens wrath and destruction: carnal reason pleads: unbelief pronounces hopeless despair on them: happy for believers to take up the language of faith, expressed by the children of God of old, 66 We are not careful to answer in this matter: our God, whom we serve, is able to deliver us; and he will deliver us,"....Dan. iii. 16, 17. Admirable faith and fortitude! A shining example of Old-Testament saints, worthy to be imitated by New-Testament disciples. Such a conduct yields ease to the mind, and peace to the conscience; while it confesses Jesus the only Sa. viour, it gives him the glory due to his name. And, verily, according to their faith so it was. They were saved to the uttermost. Though cast into the fiery furnace, they had the presence of Jesus; and he delivered them out of it unhurt.
Who can prescribe bounds to the salvation of Jesus? He saves according to his ability. Who can limit that which extends to the uttermost? Thou comer to God by Jesus, think not sin is too strong in thee for Jesus to save thee from. “ He is almighty to save to the uttermost.” Art thou not willing thus to be saved? Verily faith longs for it, love desires it, hope expects it. Stagger not through unbelief. Our object of faith is a once crucified Jesus, and everliving, interceding man and Mediator, and who is also the omnipotent God. Is any thing too hard for the Lord? Why then should sin hold thee one moment under its power? why should it at all distress thy mind? Nay, it could not, but for thy unbelief. But is not the strength of Jesus the most powerful encouragement for poor sinners to come to God continually? A throne of grace is ever open. A God of love seated on it. Jesus ever lives, and always prays. A sal, vation to the uttermost perfection is promised, and the infinitely powerful Jehovah” able to effect it. Coming to God by Jesus, o this is a sweet mystery for faith to feed upon, to be nourished and strengthened by! We are confident of access, perfectly sure of accept tance by Jesus. We are not left to perhaps or peradventure, because it is not founded upon ourselves, upon what we have done or can do, but upon the eternal life, everlasting love, and unchangeable priesthood of Jesus.
Christ over-rules all mortal things,
And manages all our affairs ; On humble souls the King of kings
Bestows his counsels and his cares.
Our sorrows and our tears we pour
Into the bosom of our God;
Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall j call his name Immanuel.... Isa. vii. 14. : -' ,
On this prophecy hangs the hopes of fallen sinners. Had this word failed, we were all damned forever. Horror eternal awaited us. Hell eternal must have been our doom. God must be bornia: bạbe in time, or sinful man is forever lost. But, O my fellow siñners, all hail ! I congratulate you. This day is this scripture fulfilled. This virgin hath conceived. This son, this Immanuel is born, God in our nature: God with us. God for us, we behold in Jesus. He says, “I was set up from everlasting," (as the covenant head of my; people )...."My delights were with the sons of men,"....Prov. viii. 23, 31. 0, he hath shewn how he delighted over us, how he rested for ever in his love to us. For he came to visit us in our flesha: "Verily he took not on him the nature of angels, but he became a BABE in human flesh, a man in stature; born to save, lived to justify, died to redeem.... who? fallen angels? No. They are left reserved in chains of darkness. But unto us sinners against God, us miserable apos. tates from God, in the very same desperate state as devils are: behold "unto us a child is born ;. unto us a son is given." That awe. who are filthy by birth, and polluted by nature, imight have a holy birth, and a sanctified nature IN HIM. “The government is upon his shoulders." He is our KING." He reigns over us, for us, and in us. Our souls and all our concerns are safe in his hands. 4 "His: name is WONDERFUL.” In his conception, his birth, his person, God and man in one Christ; in his life, his death, his resurrections ascension, and intercession, wonderful. In his love to us, and sal vation of us, wonderful. “COUNSELLOR.". He powerfully pleads our cause above: he sweetly counsels our hearts below to come to him so we find blessed rest in him. “THE MIGHTY GOD." No less could save us. Jesus is the God of sour salvation. "THE DEVERLASTINO FATHER.! He begets us to himself by the word of his grace. The most tender párent on earth never loved his children asi Jesus loves us. THE PRINCE OF PEACE,"... Isa. ix: 6. * He is ever: at peace with us, has made peace for us, i bestows his peace on us.
O, ye sinners of the human race, if as verily as the virgin con ceived and brought forth this son, your hearts conceive Jesus by faith, this will bring forth holy love to Jesus. - The birth of Jesus is our delicious Christmas fare. BEHOLD it, says the prophet: dwell on it in your minds, feed on it in your hearts. To conceive of our Lord becoming a babe, living in fleshi for usy dying on the accursed tree to take away our sins and save our souls' • while we count all other hopes vain, O this makes us keep a joyful CHRISTMAS'all the year round. For this brings "glory to God in the highest, peace on earth, good will towards men."...Luke ii. 14.
We are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good - works, which God hath before ordained that we should , walk in them....Eph. ii. 10..
Upon a survey of the works of creation, the psalmist cries out with admiration, “O Lord, how manifold are thy works, in wisdom hast thou made them all!” is such a display of wisdom and glory visible in the objects of time and sense, which perish in the using, and are destined to destruction? 0, what infinite riches of wisdom, glory, and love, are manifest in the new creation in Christ Jesus, which are of a spiritual and eternal nature! Such is the æconomy of the covenant of grace, the glorious three persons in the ever-adorable trinity concur in the salvation of sinners. God the Father elects in Christ Jesus to glory, and ordains good works, as the fruits of everlasting love, for all the heirs of salvation to walk in. Jesus, in whom they are chosen, atones for all the guilt of their sins, and frees them from all the condemnation of the law. And the divine Spirit creates their souls anew in righteousness, peace, and holiness. But why doth he say, “created in Christ Jesus?" Because we are his members; one with him, beloved in hini, chosen in him, viewed in him; loved with the very same love, as Jesus our head is....John xvii. 23. What is wrought in us by the power of God the Spirit, is not to glorify us in our own eyes, to make us independent of our head, Jesus; but to glorify him, and keep us in close union to, and sweet communion with him; that so our good works, our fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, may abound to the glory of God. How awful is this delusion, under pretence of exalting Jesus to depreciate the work of his Spirit in us? How fatal the mistake of thinking our good works are to recommend us to God's favor? But how does the devil amuse poor dead sinners with notions of good works, and swell them with the pride of their works! as though they were the price of God's favor, and the purchase of his kingdom. All such works are of the flesh, they flow from pride and unbelief, and are accursed. The seventeenth article of our church speaks of “walking RELIGIOUSLY in good works.” As though there are no good works, but what spring from the religion of Jesus. Christian, what thou art called to in life, that thou art created to in thy soul. Those duties exhorted to in the word, thou hast strength to perform by the Spirit. Therefore, though sinful and lost, in thy first creation, yet thou art saved and righteous by thy new creation in Christ Jesus. In him, being one with him, thou mayest say with Paul, “I have all things and abound."....Phil. iv. 18. ... i Not to the terrors of the Lord, But we are come to Sion's hill ** The tempest, fire and smoke,
The city of our God, Not to the thunder of that word Where milder words declare his will, . Which God on Sinai spoke.
And spread his love abroad. • Vol. I.
The God of peace shall bruise salan under your feet shortly....Rom. xvi. 20.
It is very common for the followers of the Lamb to reason, but not right, after this manner: “how can I be a son of the God of peace? how can I be a subject of the prince of peace, seeing I am daily in war and fightings? If at any time the sweet sound of peace is heard in my heart, and the comforting sense of peace is felt in my conscience, soon some rebel lust, some sinful passion, or some fiery dart of the enemy, makes an attack upon me; hence war commences and peace is banished.” Nay but, soul, Jesus is still the peace. God is ever at peace with thee. Glory in this always. Know thon art to fight the good fight of faith as a soldier of Jesus. Thy present state exposes thee to enemies. Being born again of the Spirit, thy flesh lusteth against thee, and thou feelest it, art groaning under it and striving against it. The strong man, satan, who heretofore kept thee in possession, when thou wast at peace with him, is now čast out by Jesus; therefore he besieges and attacks. The world with its vanities, its children with their smiles and frowns, promises and threatenings, animated by the god of this world,” are af war with thee; because thou art not of this world, but of the kingdoni of Jesus.
That this combined power opposes thee, is a scriptural mark that thou art born of God. That thou art át war with them, is an evidence, a happy evidence of the life of thy soul, and of thy faith and love in Christ Jesus. Rather let this strengthen thy confidence than deject thy mind. Was it any proof that Jesus was not the Son of God, because satan tried to make him question it, and tempted him to idolatry, covetousħess and self
murder? Did this destroy his hope and peace in his God and Father? Nor need his temptations interrupt thine." Thy God knows thou art conflicting with satan. IE is his good pleasure to permit it for a season. Yeä, he knows also thou canst not bruise satan, much less overcome him. Natural men are ready to ask what is this bruising of satan: we sée no need of it. No, it is because they lie fast asleep in his arms. But those who are awake, and fee from him, he 'ever tries to distress. But, O christian, here is thy comfort, Jesus has bruised the serpent's head. Thy assurance of victory lies in tńé almiglitý power of Jesus, and faithful promise of thy Father. Look up with confidence for as sure as satan's head is bruised, thy God, who is at peace with thee, is at war with every enemy that is against thee. Fight with courage. He will strengthen thee to stand against, yea more, give thee perfect victory over all the powers of darkness, all the malice of hell. As a vanquished foe thou shalt tread satan under thy feet shortly. “Say to them that are of a fearful heart, be strong, fear not: behold your God will come with vengeance, (against the enemy) he will come and save you."....Isa. XXXV. 4.
Put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ.... Rom. xii. 14.
Man is an active being Happiness is his pursuit. “Who will shew me any good?” is his continual enquiry. But to seek it from wrong objects is his constant practice. Hence naturally we are ever restless and uneasy. The new-born soul only has found the centre of true felicity, real good, and permanent happiness, in the know. ledge and enjoyment of his Saviour! Here paradise is regained: a heaven of bliss is restored to his soul. It is the peculiar glory of the gospel, it ever presents a precious object to our mind, even the Lord Jesus, from whom alone we derive peace of conscience, joy of heart, and transport of soul. Is there, believer, a day in the year, an hour in the day, wherein thou wouldst pray to be excused from putting on the Lord Jesus Christ as the perfection of thy nature, and the adorning of thy soul? Surely not. As one made alive from the dead," the Holy Ghost, by the word, stirs up thy “pure mind, by way of remembrance.” Thou art not called to dream over dry, heathenish lectures of morality; nor from philosophic rules to acquire this and the other habit of virtue; neither art thou left to licentious liberty, to make provision for the flesh, to fulfil the Justs thereof. But it is to be the daily exercise of thy believing mind to put on the Lord Jesus Christ as the essence of every virtue ; for in this consists all thy present comfort and holiness. And by this thou wilt become dead to all the pleasing, inviting objects that stand so thick around thee to beguile thy mind, and draw thine heart from its best friend,
The miser calls his gold his own, it is his god. Hence he exer, cises all his affections upon it, and derives all his happiness from it,
The man of pleasure is in continual search after the enjoyment of new delights from the gay surrounding objects of a perishing world. Infinitely greater blessings are christians called to.. O, believer, Jesus is thine. In the exercise of thy mind and the affections of thy soul; put on thy Lord continually as thy righteousness, thy strength, thy riches, thy pleasure, thy honor, thy glory, thy ALL. Oppose Christ to all the pleasures of the world, to all the delights of sense, and every scene of vanity. Put on Christ in thy con science; there plead the atonement of his precious blood against the guilt of sin, the perfection of his righteousness to every demand of the law, the prevalency of his intercession against all thy fears, the freeness and fulness of his promises against all thy doubts. Boldly withstand every accusation from satan with, “Christ hạth died, yea rather is risen again, and ever lives to make intercession for us :" “Who is he that condemneth?".... Rom. viii. 34. Strangely, my soul, art thou array'd In sweetest harmony of praise By the great sacred three !
Let all thy powers agree.