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admire or trust in human virtue! Above all, what is the foundation and corner-stone of selfrighteousness? It is pride, that sin of all others most odious and abominable in the sight of God. Is it not a matter of daily experience, that those persons who are evidently most loose and careless in their own practice, and who, one would think, should have least of that kind to rely upon, are most prone to a self-righteous plan, and most ready to despise the doctrine of-justisicatioa through the imputed righteousness of Christ. Are you sometimes surprised at this. Christians? The thing is easily explained. They know little either of the law of God or their own hearts. They seldom study the one, or reflect upon the other. If they did, they would soon be ashamed of such a pretence. Those who apply themselves with the greatest diligence to the study of. holiness in heart and life, do always most sensibly feel, and most willingly confess, that all their righteousnesies are as silthy rags before God.
4. In Christ Jesus, and the blood of the everlasting covenant, there is abundant provision made for the pardon of all our sins, and peace with an offended God. "Behold the Lamb of '' God, which taketh away the sin of the world F* Behold the Lamb which God himself hath ordained, and set apart for this important work, and which he will certainly accept!" Deliver ". them." faith he, " from going down to the.. *' pit: I have found a ransom." Behold the immaculate and spotless victim in the purity of his human, and the glory of his divine nature! There is no sin so atrocious but bis blood is sufficient £cient to wash away the guilt. Is there any sinner in this assembly burdened with a fense of guilt, arrested by an accusing conscience, terrisied by the thunders of the law, ready to cry out, " Who can stand besore this holy Lord. "God! My flesh trembleth because of thee s "I am afraid of thy judgements." Let such an one know, that help is laid on him that is. "mighty to save." Let your guilt be what it will, who can so far derogate from the Redeemer's glory as to suspect that his blood cannot purge it away? -Give no heed to unbelieving thoughts, or discouraging suggestions; but be "strong in faith, giving glory to God;" and attend to the Saviour's own words: " Him that *' cometh unto me, I will in no wife. east>out." 5. In the tqst place, Let all the children of God, whose hope hath still been in the divine mercy through a crucisied Saviour, embrace. the opportunity now given them of professing, exercising, and strengthening their faith in the great atonement. Plead your relation to God through Christ, and encourage yourselves in his all-sussiciency and merit. Look upon his sufferings for humbling you under a fense of the evil of sin, which made such an expiation necessary. Nothing serves more to abase and level human pride, than to see our nature on the cross, tho' personally united to the divine. Look upon him in his agony, for mortifying and crucifying sin in you. There is a purifying virtue, and sanctifying efsicacy, in the blood of Christ. It not only speaks peace to the wounded conscience, but purges the conscience from dead
works. works to serve the living God. I am not against the introduction of every argument from scripture or reason against sin, or in support of duty; but let them never supplant the great, the leading, the constraining argument, which is drawn from the cross of Christ. Believe it, my brethren, nothing so much reconciles the heart to duty, nothing so kindles a holy indignation against sin, as a believing view of the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. This gives the Spirit of adoption a child-like fear, and a child-like love. This sills the Christian with comfort, this inspires the Christian with zeal. To seek our comfort in a separate way, or in the sirst instance from our duties, is to make that comfort feeble and variable as the duties are defective; but to enliven our duties by the comforts of the gospel, is to follow the order of the covenant of grace, by which we at once promote the glory of God, and most effectually secure our own comfort and peace. This is the Spirit breathed by the apostle Paul, with whose words, Gal. ii. 19. 20. I shall conclude: "For I through the law am dead "to the law, that I might live unto God. I am "crucisied with Christ: Nevertheless I live; "yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the "life which I now live in the flesh, I live by the "saith of the Son of God, who loved me, and "gave himself for me."
Ret. i. 5.
Unto him that loved us, and -washed its from mr Jins in his own blood.
THE bare repetition of these words is sufficient to convince every hearer how well they are suited to the design of our present meeting. Redeeming love is certainly the most delightful of all themes to every real Christian. It is the immediate and direct object of our contemplation in the Lord's supper. This ordinance was instituted to keep up the remembrance of the sufferings and death of Christ, which was the great and sinishing proof of his love. How then can you attend on it in a more becoming and dutiful, a more pleasant and desireable, or a more happy and useful frame of spirit, than when your hearts are silled with a sense of the love of Christ, and you sind yourselves disposed to join, with a mixture os joy and wonder, in the doxology of the apostle John, in the text, Unto him that loved us, and wajbed us from tur fins in his ovin blood?
The author of this book is sometimes styled
the the disciple -whom Jesus loved. Since, therefore, it pleased his master to distinguish him by the tenderness of particular friendship, it is no wonder that we sind so much of the delightful asfection of love in his writings. In the beginning of this chapter, he gives an account of the general subject and design os the book of Revelation, the manner in which the discoveries contained in it were made to him, and his sidelity in testifying them to others. Then follows the apostolic salutation to the seven churches in Asia, which is a solemn benediction, in name of all the persons of the adorable Trinity: "Grace "be to you, and peace, from him which is, and "which was, and which is to come;" (that is, from God the Father, the ancient of days, immutable and eternal); "and from the seven 'spirits which are before his throne;" (not detain you with a critical account of this phrase, it means the Holy Ghost, single in his person, but multiplied in his gifts; the variety, fullness, and perfection of which, are denoted by this form of expression); "aqd from Jesus "Christ, who is the saithful witness, and tha "sirst-begotten from the dead, and the prince "of the kings of the earth." To him you fee he gives three illustrious characters.