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having a spot or wrinkle, or any such thing : that it may be holy and without blemish.” (Eph. 5: 27.)
Then there will be no more world around the Church, and in conflict with it. No vexing nations of uncircumcised will, border on that Canaan. No Achans will carry into it, and seek to bide unholy spoils, to prove a plague spot and a curse. No Jonas in that ark, to be called out by the voice of angry storms and threatening waves, to the alarm of all. No Judas, hiding a devil, to poison with perfidy and woo the embraces of the saints. There will be no coverings there to secrete seeds of sip and sorrow. No scienco, specious but false, building foundations against God. No selfish trafficking in treasures, alluring into its marts, and tempt. ing souls to bow down to it, satisfied away from God. No social life, circling in eddies, to draw the affections from the glorious stream, which pours toward the heart of Jesus.
Behold paradiso regained ! Behold a sanctified outward world for sanctified beings—nothing secular, nothing profane everything one holy sacrament, opening into the heart of Jesus, and to the fountains of holiness, of eternal life and love.
Tbere, too, the idea of saint will become still farther complete, in the full harmony and holiness of soul and body.
This is never attained in the Church here. The Church proposes the sanctification and salvation of the body; but as the body be. longs to the outward man, it is last reached, and last completed, by the renovating and sanctifying process. Though it begins here, in regeneration, its completion belongs to a future and bigber stadium of the Church's triumphs. It is here known only in the way of earnest. The resurrection of the soul from spiritual death is reached here : this includes that of the body, and looks forward to it as its end; but this last achievement belongs to the second resurrection. “Blessed is he tbat bath part in it!"
Here the saint in process, has already his conversation in Heaven; but it is only that from thence he may look for the Saviour: who sball change his vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body, according to the working whereby He is able to subdue all things unto himself.” (Philip 3: 20, 21.)
Now he is "rison with Christ," and seeks those things which are above-eets his affections on things above-is dead, and has his life hid with Christ in God. But this is not yet what shall be ! But “wben Christ, who is his life shall appear, then will be also appear with him in glory'-soul and body!
The holy Apostle Paul felt the painful disharmony between the body and the soul-between the new central life of grace in bis soul, and the strong pressure of the outward man. (Rom 7,)
There is true ground in Christianity, also, for the old complaint of beatbenism as to the disharmony of body and spirit. Not, in. deed, that the body is the hopeless enemy of the soul, but that the powers of evil assail the soul longest and last through the body : and especially that the renovation and holiness of the soul can only bocome complete in the glorification of the body. (Rom. 8.)
In that life above, this barmony will be complete-a holy outward world-a boly body, as the willing organ of a holy soul. That is the perfection of the idea of saint. Blessed is he wbo can say, with an unction which is the true beginning of this transcendent bliss: "As for me, I shall behold Thy face in righteousness; I shall be satisfied when I awake in Thy likeness.”
0, glorious hour! 0, blest abode
1.) This subject shows us the wide range of the kingdom of grace. There is nothing too sinall, nothing too great for grace.
It laysits foundations in the germs of humanity. As Jesus began His human life as a babe, so grace begins in babes. It begins before self-conciousness, before knowledge, before the exercise of will. It is a true mother-it seeks to bias and commit the earliest powers in favor of grace. Is the infant born depraved, so that sin abounds: it is born at the same time, an heir of the promise with its parent, and is already holy by separation, that grace may much more abound.
This same kingdom of grace extends over the whole of the scene of earthly probation. It provides for the protection and growth of the life of graco. It takes in also the sanctified spirit's heaven. ly history. It is the samo grace all the time-in its dawning, in its rise, and in its glorious meridian of glory in the highest heaven.
2.) The truth we have unfolded preaches to us tho exercise of charity towards the weaknesses and infirmities of God's covenanted people.
How common are harsh and sweeping judgments! How easily do men on account of a few blemishes condemn the whole! “Judge nothing before the time.” There is a stream, covered with bubbles ! Do not say it is all bubbles. What we see is but the outward life.
What we see is only life in process. The life which produces the process is the thing to be seen and admired!
3.) This thought furnishes ground for great encouragement to bum. ble souls who are cast down and distressed under a sense of their many imperfections.
Ye are not yet come to the rest! The very earnestness of the struggle is the best evidence that you are taken up by the process. Be not dismayed if new conflicts appear at every step. Patiently fill up that which is behind of the sufferings of Christ. Glory in tribulation. Endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. Bear the cross, despising the shame. Always lift up your eyes, for your redemption draweth nigh; and now are you nearer than when you first believed. Let your watchword be : I count all things but loss; and what is loss, that I count gain to me! Be patient, and believe; your glorifiation will be reached in due time.
In the 5th chapter of Exodus we are furnished with a manifestation of that same spirit of unbelief and shortsightedness, wbich has often, in the history of men and nations, produced much mischief. The first attempt of Moses, who was to be a deliverer to the Jews, wrought evil instead of good results. The tasks of the Jews, al. ready beavy enough, were made still heavier, and their condition of bondage and toil made still more irksome. This change for the worse they attributed at once, and as a matter of course, to the effort for relief and reform made by Moses, and laid all the blame of their increased trouble and toil to his charge. "The Lord look upon you and judge,” said they, “because ye have made our savor to be abhored in the eyes of Pharaoh and in the eyes of his servants, to put a sword in their hand to slay us ” Even Moses, with the timidity which seemed to attach to all his acts at the beginning of his great work, accepted this as a true conclusion, and carried their accusation from himself to God, “Lord wherefore bast thon 80 evil entreated this people? Why is it that thou bast sent ine? For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in thy name, he hath done evil to this people, neither hast thou delivered thy people at all.”
Moses and the people, in their disappointment at the failure of this first effort, forgot the promise of God and the inherent justice of their cause. God had promised to deliver them, but not by their first effort, on the contrary, he had very plainly said to Moses; “I am sure the King of Egypt will not let you go; no, not by a mighty band," and bad fully explained that their release would only be effected after he manifested his power and wrought his wonders in the land of Egypt.
This identical short sighted spirit of unbelief is aroused by every great reformatory movement. It met Moses in the case we are contemplating; it met Jesus whilst he labored on the earth, and it bas met, and will meet, every earnest determined effort made by any of His people looking towards a putting away of abuse, or à moving forward in the way of legitimate historical development in His body the Church. It always attributes effects to wrong causes. In the case of Moses, it attributed the increase of their tasks to the effort made to obtain for them the privilege of going up to worship the God of their fathers, instead of placing the blame upon Pharaoh where it properly belonged. It was not the fulfilling of God's command by Moses that caused the mischief, but the bardness of Pharaoh's heart. And yet it appeared so plausible and plain, that their tasks would not have been increased bad Moses not spoken to Pharaoh, that even Moses fell in with the common and popular error and laid the sin to God's charge. In looking at past ages in the light of history, we can readily see the folly and sinfulness of such views and such actions; but we shall be equally foolish and sinful if we suffer ourselves either as indi. viduals, as did Moses, or as a people, as did the Jews, to be de. ceived and led astray by this same blind spirit of doubting and un. belief.
This feeling of despair at the failure of their first effort, is not so surprising in the Jews in view of their condition at this time and for a number of years previously. Reduced by the Egyptians to a state of abject bondage, they were already broken in spirit and disposed readily to submit to greater outrages, rather than by resisting to risk a still heavier increase of their burdens. Living un. der the terrible incubus of such a system, it is not surprising that the Israelites were but poorly prepared for the deliverance which God bad in store for them. They had been debarred for years all the blessed privileges of their religion-and as a consequence had lost that firm and active faith in the God of their fathers, which had ruled and governed the hearts and lives of Abraham and Isaac and Jacob; and Moses had good ground for his assertion that this people would not hear him. The effects of their bondage did not cease with their exodus from Egypt. Upon every fresh trial they were manifest. But the fact that they were not prepared, so far as human wisdom could judge, for the freedom and deliverance the Lord had in store for them, did not prevent Him from accomplishing by the hand of Moses just what he designed to accomplish. He did lead them forth, after he had shewed forth his power by the plagues he visited upon the stubborn and wicked Egyptians and by the hand of Moses afterwards gave them that great, yet concise code of law which remains in force to this day.
We discover also in this portion of Bible history, another and very important lesson. It is the responsibility of the people of a country for the conduct of their rulers. In this case it was the government, and it alone, wbich was the direct cause of the enslavement of the Jews. The kings of Egypt governed with absolute sway; but although the people were not active in the oppression and enslavement of the Israelites, yet they consented to it passively, and thus rendered themselves partakers of the guilt of their rulers. It is not possible for any one man, or any small number of men, to force a nation to do a great wrong, unless the people either actively participate in it, or passively fold their hands and refuse to prevent its consummation. In either case they are alike guilty with their rulers. To deny this principle is to make God guilty of gross injustice in His treatment of the Egyptians. The plagues fell not only upon the house of Pharaoh and his servants, but smote the whole land of Egypt. The people suffered with their rulers, and when the last blow, that most terrible of all, fell upon them, even the little children were not spared, but from the hovel of the lowest, to the palace of king, the wail of agony went up for the death of the firstborn of every household, and these little ones paid with their lives a portion of the penalty of their rulera,