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the cry,

beneath the load ; He cries out in the agony of His soul, “Mine iniquities,” mark, how completely He makes them His own iniquities,Mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, so that I am not able to look up, they are more than the hairs of my head; therefore my heart faileth me.” * Nor is this all. The Father hides His face from Him. He turns away His countenance in holy hatred, for He cannot look upon sin, one sin ; how then shall He look upon the sins of a world ? And it is not till

“ It is finished," announces that all is over,—the atonement made, the curse rolled off, the stain for ever washed away,—that the Father's countenance beams back again the smile of reconciliation, affection, and love ; it is not till that cry rings through the universe, telling to the Church in Heaven and in earth the ransom and the


of the once alienated family, that the Father again says, as He had before said, of the Son of His love, “ This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased ; ” + “Mine Elect, in whom my soul delighteth.” I

That cry we have now heard,-the death-cry of Jesus,-a cry that announces that Suffering

* Ps, xl. 12.

+ Matt, iii, 17.

$ Is. xlii. 1.


is over, that Type and Prophecy are both fulfilled, that Atonement is fully made. Nothing

remained to be done. Jesus had finishedthe work which the Father had given Him to do, and “He bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.”

“He bowed His head and gave up the ghost.” O how unlike death is this ! how even here the Godhead triumphs over the Manhood, and the crown of Deity throws into deepest shade the crown of scorn! Ah! the cross, Beloved, was a hard pillow for one who was wrestling with “ the last enemy;" but who ever witnessed on beds of down, such calmness, such composure, such dignity in death? 5. He bows His head,” in token of submission to His Father's will. He “ gives up the Ghost," or as we have already expounded it, « dismisses the spirit from the body," and so dies without constraint, a voluntary victim, a self-devoted sacrifice for your sins and mine. What a beautiful commentary on His own words, put by the spirit of prophecy into the mouth of David, “ Lo I come, in the volume of the Book it is written of me, I ilelight to do Thy will, yea, Thy law is within my heart."* All the Principalities of Heaven, and all the Powers of hell, could they have banded together in an unnatural confederacy against Him, could not have forced Him to give up the ghost one moment sooner than the period He had assigned in His own Divine mind. He died, not in obedience to the law of nature, but in obedience to His own Sovereign pleasure,-In a word, He died because it was His will to die; He expired, because it was His will to expire. Did He not say to Pilate, when He reminded him of his power to crucify Him, and his power to release Him,” “Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above;" * and, did He not say to the Jews, in language we have already quoted, “No man taketh my life from me, but I lay it down of myself, I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again ?” Could he have ventured to use this majestic language, unless He had been truly God, “very God of very God," one with the Father, in perfection, power, and will ? His Divinity placed Him above the malice of men, and thus while writhing in the agonies of crucifixion, never perhaps did He show Himself so conspicuously the Lord of life and glory.

* Ps, xlviii. 7, 8.

* John xix. 11.


O draw near, and contemplate the Sufferer upon whom, in addition to bodily torture, is pressing the burden of the sins of a world. What composure is there, what beautiful tranquillity, what calmness of preparation for approaching dissolution ! He is praying for His murderers,-presenting before His Father a petition in behalf of those who are mocking His dying agonies ;-He is providing for His widowed and desolate mother, committing her to the guardianship of the disciple whom He loves; He is exercising the prerogatives of His kingly office, in promising to His penitent companion in death a place in His kingdom ; and He is occupied in searching into types and prophecies, comparing type with type and prophecy with prophecy, careful that nothing which the Spirit has recorded shall escape its full accomplishment. And now, satisfied that nothing is wanting to complete the chain of evidence proving Him to be the Christ of God, “having received the vinegar," He says, “It is finished,” and “bows His head and gives up the Ghost.” O surely this is like a God! Does the infidel smile and sneeringly say, “Behold your God dying upon a cross ? ” We reply, “ Yes, He is dying, and dying upon a cross, but, it is not as man He is dying; it is

Do you

as God.” But stay! Deity cannot die, the Godhead cannot decease. True, and therefore we lay our hand upon our lips, and with meek, unquestioning, reverential faith, forbear to explain how God could suffer ; sufficient for us to know that God has suffered, and that, therefore, Man is saved,

And now, Beloved Brethren, are Christ's sufferings ended ? Are Type and Prophecy accomplished ? Is atonement fully made ? Then welcome, welcome to the cross. need a pardon for past sin? Come and take it. Do you need a security againt future sin ? Come and claim it. Do you need a righteousness wherein to stand complete before God? Come and clothe yourself in it at the foot of

In a word, do you need salvation ? It is yours. Jesus has purchased it for you this day at a costly price, the price of His precious blood; and who shall wrest it from the grasp of faith? “When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, He said, It is finished.” Oh! remember “ It is finished.” Jesus has not paid off a part of the debt, leaving a part still standing against you on the pages of God's account-book. He has shut the books, He has closed the account, He has earned for you a full and final discharge from

the cross.

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