Imagini ale paginilor

generating sinful thoughts, (which in too many has been neglected, as they have been wilfully disobedient to the command to love God with all the heart,)which ripen to maturity, explode, and inevitable destruction is too often the consequence; they are plunged into misery, hurried along by their worldly passions, on the broad road leading to the chambers of eternal death; their immortal souls plunged into the unfathomable abyss of outer darkness, the lake of fire and brimstone, where there shall be weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth. To avoid, therefore, this awful end, examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; for by grace are ye saved through faith and not of works or yourselves; it is the gift of God obtained through faith in Jesus Christ our Lord.

Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.We therefore, preach the glorious life-giving gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, to turn you from the error of your ways to the living God. Christ who was made a curse for us; a sin offering was veiled under types and ordinances in the Jewish dispensatior, proclaimed by the ancient prophets, those holy men as they were moved by the Holy Ghost; the assurance of salvation was even made immediately after the fall, when God said the seed of the wornan shall bruise the serpent's head; alluding to the Messiah. The patriarch Abraham heard and believed, and it was accounted to him for righteousness. The illustrious Saviour, obscured and veiled in mystery, under the title of the "Branch," "Plànt of Renown," “ The Lord our Righteousness,” the prophet Isaiah styles, and very justly too, “ The Wonderful Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace." due time the Virgin Mary received a visit from Gabriel, an Angel of God, exclaiming, “ Hail, thou that art highly favored, the Lord is with thee, blessed art thou among women;" perceiving her trouble of mind, he said unto her, “ Fear not Mary, for thou hast found favor with God," and that the power of the Highest should overshadow her, and telling her to name the child Jesus, and that he would be great, and

[ocr errors]



would be called the son of the Highest; and that the Lord God would give unto him the throne of his father David. As it was predicted, in due time the Glorious, Bright, and Morning Star arose at Bethlehem, Judea, as it is written, “Thou Bethlehem, though least among the thousands of Judah, behold mighty works show themselves forth in thee.”! Here then was the object of the christian's faith presented to sight. His birth having been announced by an Angel of the Lord to neighboring shepherds, no doubt to try their faith, whose hearts were greatly elated by being thus honored by those Holy beings, sent expressly as ambassadors from the Majesty on High, to inform them that the long expected Messiah had appeared, commissioning them to proceed thither, to worship the infant Jesus; the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending; he in whom they lived, moved, and had their being; the Eternal Father, in the character of his only begotten Son, Emanuel, veiled in the human form, lying in a manger. O! what humility, manifested by unbounded, boundless love. Nothing wavering, but on the departure of the Celestial Host, the shepherds left their flocks on the mountain side and commenced their journey to pay obeisance to the illustrious stranger, whom they discovered wrapped in swadling clothes, lying in a manger; they fell down and worshipped Jesus, after which they presented unto him gists, gold, and frankincense and myrrh; according to the custom of the East, on the birth of great persons. They then returned, praising and glorifying God.

At the circumcising of the child, Simeon, to whom it had been previously revealed by the Holy Ghost, was led by the spirit into the temple, and testified that this was the Lord's Christ; a light to lighten the Gentiles and the glory of Israel. : Anna the prophetess coming in at the time, gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all who looked for redemption in Jerusalem. Most certainly then, this was he whọ was to bear our iniquity; to comfort the mourners;. to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning; the


garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified. John the Baptist, the forerunner of our Lord, when baptising the multitudes that came unto him, being in expectation, and musing in their hearts wheth er he were the Christ, said unto them, “I indeed baptise you with water, but one mightier than I cometh, the latches of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose ; he shall baptise you with the Holy Ghost and with fire, for to enter into the kingdom of Heaven, ye must all be born again from above with water and the Holy Spirit; whose fan is in his hand and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and will gather the wheat into his garner, but will burn the chaff with fire unquenchable, After which Jesus himself came unto John to be baptised of him, and lo! the heavens were opened, and the Holy Ghost descended in the form of a dove and rested upon him, and a voice came from heaven, saying, “ This is my beloved son in whom I'am well pleased, hear ye him.” As therefore, God our Creator acknowledged him as his son and was pleased, ought not we his creatures hear and believe in him ? for in him dwelt the Godhead bodily. Let us examine what he says. After having been tempted forty days and nights of Satan, he was at length taken upon the pinnacle of the temple by the devil, who said unto him, “If thou art the son of God cast thyself down from hence.” Jesus answered and said, “ thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.” Here is confirmed what I have been seeking to establish, that he was the promised Messiah in his human nature; and in the divine equal with God from all eternity, who said unto him, " Thy throne, O God, is from everlasting to everlasting; a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.". It is also said there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost, and these three are one.

Although in the sacred writings are many things hard to be understood, and although we are unable to comprehend the mystery of the Godhead, the Trinity in the Unity, yet

[ocr errors]


nevertheless, we are to receive and believe the truth thereof, for thereon depends the salvation of our immortal souls. “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith.” “He that believeth and is baptised shall be saved, and he that believeth not shall be damned,” are the words of our Lord, delivered while tabernacling among men; going about healing the sick, raising the dead, and giving life to as many as came unto him. “1 am,” says he, 6 the resurrection and the life, he that believeth in me though he were dead yet shall he live, and he that liveth and believeth in me shall never die." O glorious truth, to live forever with our Beloved in a world too unchangeable! free from heat and cold, sin, sorrow, and sighing; in a heaven of holiness, illuminated by the effulgent beams of the Sun of Righteousness; to see God as he is, face to face; who shall wipe all tears from our eyes, and exalt us from glory to glory, forevermore. They that were wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and they that turned many to righteousness, as the stars forever and ever.

While our Lord continued on earth, ministering to the Saints, building them up in the most holy faith, he wrought such stupendous miracles, and spake with such power, accompanied with the divine unction, that compelled many to confess that he spake as never man spake, and that he was of a truth the Messiah, the Son of the living God. Jesus Christ was not sent into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved. Now he that believeth not is condemned already, because there is no other name given whereby men can or must be saved. Will you, whatever your prospects may be, will you, I repeat, continue in this awful state of condemnation ? if not, then grasp

the promises through faith in the Lamb of God; whose blood cleanseth from all sin, and purifies unto himself pecu. liar people, zealous of good works.

During our Lord's sojourn, many had their sick restored to health, yea even the dead were raised; the lame were healed,

and the blind restored to sight; to the broken hearted balm and oil were administered spiritually, and they were comforted, and the contrite spirits were revived. Thus he continued dispensing his blessings, temporal and spiritual, although contrary to the world and its ways; by which, notwithstanding his great merit and virtue, righteousness and holiness, and all that was advanced to prove that he was the Son of God, it rejected and would not believe on him; but persecute, oppiess and revile bim, and at length behold they crown him with thorps, and scourge him; he is led forth to be crucified! Pause, O sinners, and behold his suffering that you might live! Yes, he is lead forth to be crucified :

Lo! the Lord, the Lord of Glory,

Behold him now on yonder road,
Leading to the hill of Calvary ;

The Lord, the Lord, Creation's God.

Surrounded by a ruffian band

Of soldiers, and miscellaneous crowd,
Who beset him on either hand,

Reviling and upbraiding loud.

Afar off are his companions,

Lest they suffer for the same cause,
Of having been faithful champions,

Under their Master, for the truth. Forsaken by his intimate friends, betrayed by one and deserted by the others; it was the power of darkness. He was nailed to the cross! became a spectacle to men and Angels, heaven and earth. The enormous load of human guilt, being that of the whole world, for which he suffered, induced God to withdraw as it were bis countenance for awhile, showing no signs that this was his son. During the suspension of the intercourse with the Father, in agony and agitation of spirit, he cried out: “My God! My God! why hast thou forsaken me?"

Yet, notwithstanding his great suffering he prayed for his murderers, “ Father forgive them, for they know not what they do;" and to the women he said "weep not daughters of

« ÎnapoiContinuați »