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and more than thrice happy are
they, who are joined with him in i cor. 1. 2-m Ex. xvi. 16. Num xl. 7 Neh. ix. 15. this undivided union, which no
complaints, nor even the day of death, can dissolve; nay, the last
day is happy above all other days, Reader.—Labour not for the meat for this very reason, that it fully which perisheth, but for that meat and finally completes this union, which endureth to everlasting life.- and is so far from dissolving it, that Let us be ashamed to live with our it renders it absolutely perfect and heads bowed down, like grovelling everlasting. beasts gazing upon the earth, or But that it may be coeval with even to catch at the vain and airy eternity, and last for ever, it is ab. shadows of science, while, in the solutely necessary that this union mean time, we know not, or do not should have its beginning in this consider, whence we took our rise, short and fleeting life. And, pray, and whither we are soon to return, what hinders those of us, that have what place is to receive our souls, not entered into this union before, when they are set at liberty from to enter into it without delay ? Seethese bodily prisons. If it is the ing the bountiful Jesus not only reprincipal desire of your souls to un jects none that come unto him, but derstand the nature of this felicity, also offers himself to all that do not and the way that leads to it, search wilfully reject him, and standing at the Scriptures; for, from them the door, earnestly begs to be alone, we all think, or profess to admitted. O! Why do not these think, we can have eternal life. I everlasting doors open, that the king exhort and beseech you, never to of glory may enter, (Ps. xxiv,) and suffer so much as one day to pass, reign within us? And indeed, no either through lazy negligence, or man truly receives Jesus, that does too much eagerness in inferior not, at the same time, deliver up studies, without reading some part himself wholly to him. Among all of the sacred records, with a pious the advantages we pursue, there is and attentive disposition of mind; nothing comparable to this exchange. still joining with your reading fer- Our gain is immense from both, not vent prayer, that you may thereby only the acceptance of him, but also draw down that Divine light without from surrendering ourselves to him: which spiritual things cannot be so long as this is delayed, we are read and understood.-LEIGHTON. the most abject slaves : when one
This is the work of God, that ye has delivered himself up to Christ, believe on him whom he hath sent. then, and then only he is truly free, The great business of our life is this and becomes master of himself. acceptance of Christ, and an insepa- Why should we wander about to do rable union with him. Thrice happy, | purpose ? To him let us turn our
eyes, on him fix our thoughts, that appetite, so it never yields but he, who is ours by the donation of wholesome and comfortable sustethe Father, and his own free gift, nance to the soul; never hath any may be ours by a cheerful and joy- other issue than an everlasting life ous acceptance. As St. Bernard | and happiness. says on these words of the prophet, O Saviour, whensoever I sit at "To us a child is born, to us a son mine own table, let me think of is given. Let us therefore make use thine: whensoever I feed on the of what is ours, saith he, for our own bread and meat that is set before advantage.” So then let him be me, and feel myself nourished by ours by possession and use, and let that repast, let me mind that better us be his for ever, never forgetting sustenance, which my soul receives how dearly he has bought us.— from thee; and find thee more one LEIGHTON.
with me than that bodily food.The bread of God is he which com HALL. eth down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.-Lo, thou art bread
Thee we adore, Eternal Word, indeed: not the common bread; but
For thou our souls hast fed ; manna : not the Israelitish manna; Thou art our living stream, O Lord, alas, that fell from no higher than And thou the immortal bread. the region of clouds, and they that The manna came from lower skies, ate it died with it in their mouths ;
But Jesus from above,
Where the fresh springs of pleasure rise, but thou art the Living Bread, that
And rivers flow with love. came down from the heaven of hea
The Jews, the fathers, died at last, vens, of which whosoever eats lives for
Who ate that heavenly bread; ever. Thy flesh is meat, not for our But the provisions which we taste stomachs, but for our souls; our
Can raise us from the dead. faith receives and digests thee; and
Our souls shall draw their heavenly breath,
While Jesus finds supplies ; makes thee ours, and us thine.
Nor shall our graces sink in death, Our material food, in these cor
For Jesus never dies. ruptible bodies, runs into corruption:
Daily our mortal flesh decays, thy spiritual food nourisheth purely, But Christ our life shall come; and strengthens us to a blessed His unresisted power shall raise
Our bodies from the tomb. immortality.
As for this material food, many a one longs for it that cannot get it:
CCXLVI. many a one hath it, that cannot eat it; many eat it, that cannot digest it
CHAP. VI. 41–71. butinto noxious and corrupthumours; all that receive it, do but maintain
Christ declareth himself to be the bread a perishing life, if not a languishing of life to believers. Many disciples dedeath. But this flesh of thine, as it part from him. Peter confesseth him. was never withheld from any true Judas is a devil.
part from devil
41 The Jews then murmured! 51 I am the living bread at him, because he said, I am which came down from heathe bread which came down ven: if any man eat of this from heaven.
bread, he shall live for ever: 42 And they said, “Is not and TM the bread that I will give this Jesus, the son of Joseph, is my flesh, which I will give whose father and mother we for the life of the world. know how is it then that he 52 The Jews therefore * strove saith, I came down from heaven? among themselves, saying, "How
43 Jesus therefore answered can this man give us his flesh and said unto them, Murmur to eat? not among yourselves.
53 Then Jesus said unto 44 °No man can come to them, Verily, verily, I say unto
, Except ’ye eat the flesh of hath sent me draw him : and the Son of man, and drink his I will raise him up at the last blood ye have no life in you. day.
| 54 ? Whoso eateth my flesh, 45 ° It is written in the pro- and drinketh my blood, bath phets, And they shall be all eternal life; and I will raise him taught of God. Every man up at the last day. therefore that hath heard, and 55 For my flesh is meat inhath learned of the Father, deed, and my blood is drink cometh unto me.
indeed. 46°Not that any man hath 56 He that eateth my flesh, seen the Father, f save he which I and drinketh my blood, 'dwellis of God, he hath seen the eth in me, and I in him. Father.
57 As the living Father bath 47 Verily, verily, I say unto sent me, and I live by the Fayou, He that believeth on me ther: so he that eateth me, even hath everlasting life.
he shall live by me. 48 "I am that bread of life. 58 This is that bread which
49. Your fathers did eat came down from heaven : not manna in the wilderness, and as your fathers did eat manna, are dead.
and are dead: he that eateth of 50 * This is the bread which this bread shall live for ever. cometh down from heaven, that 59 These things said he in a man may eat thereof, and the synagogue, as he taught in not die.
60 “Many therefore of his / 70 Jesus answered them, disciples, when they had heard Have not I chosen you twelve, this, said, This is an hard say- and one of you is a devil ? ing; who can hear it? 1 71 He spake of Judas Is
61 When Jesus knew in him-cariot the son of Simon : for he self that his disciples murmured it was that sh at it, he said unto them, Doth being one of the twelve. this offend you ?
62 What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before ?
63 - It is the spirit that quickeneth ; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and READER.—No man can come to me, and they are life.
except the Father, which hath sent me, 64 But there are some of draw him.-Doth Christ compel men you that believe not. For
against their wills to be subject Jesus knew from the beginning
unto him ? No, in no wise. He
hath ordered to bring them in by who they were that believed
way of voluntariness and obedience. not, and who should betray
And herein is the wisdom of his him.
power seen, that his grace shall 65 And he said, Therefore mightily produce those effects in " said I unto you, that no man men, which their hearts shall most can come unto me, except it were
obediently and willingly consent given unto him of my Father. unto
unto; that he is able to use the pro66 T From that time many
per and genuine motions of second
causes to the producing of his own of his disciples went back and
most holy, wise, and merciful purwalked no more with him.
poses. As we see human wisdom 67 Then said Jesus unto the can so order, moderate, and make twelve, Will ye also go away? use of natural motions, that by these
68 Then Simon Peter an artificial effects shall be produced ; swered him, Lord, to whom
as in a clock, the natural motion shall we go? thou hast the
of the weight or plummet causeth words of eternal life.
the artificial distribution of hours
and minutes; and in a mill the 69" And we believe and are
natural motion of the wind or water sure that thou art that Christ, causeth an artificial effect in grindthe Son of the living God. ing the corn; how much more, then, shall the wisdom of Almighty that most blessed and perfect God, whose weakness is stronger, life: and this is, indeed, the great and whose foolishness is wiser, than ambition of a true christian, this men, be able so to use, incline, and is his study, which he ceases not order the wills of men, without de- to pursue with ardour day and stroying them. or their liberty, as night: nor does he let so much as that thereby the kingdom of his one day pass, without copying some Son shall be set up amongst them ! | lines of that perfect pattern; and the So that though there be still an more be advances in purity of mind, habitual, radical, fundamental in the greater progress he makes in determination and indifferency to the knowledge and contemplation several ways, unto none of which of Divine things. there can be a compulsion, yet by But who will instruct us with the secret, ineffable, and most sweet regard to the means of reaching operation of the Spirit of grace, this blessed mark? Who will shew opening the eyes, convincing the us how we may attain this conforjudgment, persuading the affections, mity to God, and most effectually inclining the heart, giving an under- promote his honour and glory, 80 standing, quickening and awaken- that at last we may come to the ing the conscience, a man shall be enjoyment of him in that endless swayed unto the obedience of Christ; life, and be for ever satisfied with and shall come unto him so cer- the beatific vision of him? What tainly as if he were drawn, and yet faithful guide shall we find to direct so sweetly as if he were left unto us in this way ? Surely he himself himself. For in the calling of men must be our leader ; there is no by the word there is a drawing and other besides him, that can answer a coming. The Father draweth and our purpose. It is he alone that the man cometh. That notes the acquaints us with his own nature, efficacy of grace, and this the as far as it is necessary for us to sweetness of grace. Grace worketh know it; and he alone that directs strongly, and therefore God is said us to the way wherein he chooses to to draw; and it worketh sweetly be worshipped. too, and therefore man is said to Nothing is more certain, than that come.—REYNOLDS.
the doctrine which leads us to God, It is written in the prophets, And must take its rise from him ; for by they shall be all taught of God. no art whatever can the waters be Every man therefore, that hath heard, made to rise higher than their and hath learned of the Father, cometh fountain.—Leighton. unto me.—Man, in this life, becomes The Father of mercies hath apso much the more perfect and pointed means of the salvation of happy, in proportion as he has his mankind, which lie open to them, mind and affections more thorough- if they would not be wanting to ly conformed to the pattern of themselves ; but especially to us,