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ly, ver. 6, for whom the Saviour died; and says the divine writer, while we were yet finners. Jesus Christ did not postpone his purposed death untill these had left their fins and become righteous ; but he shed his precious blood, to obtain that grace, whereby their hearts should be renewed, and they be made righteous. You complain that you are yet weak, that your lives have been wicked, and your hearts to this moment are hard and unbelieving. All this you see is no bar to the love of God in Christ Jefus ; if God had not loved sinners while yet they were such, and in rich mercy undertaken to recover them from that state by a way worthy of himself, they must have remained sinners to all eternity, and suffered the punishment due to fin. There is not in this or any age of the world a trembling finner whom the Lord does not look to in love, nor one that is bowed down and contrite in heart, with whom Jehovah himself does not dwell.
2dly. Christ's agonizing and painful death has fully accomplished the purposes of heavenly love. He, the Redeemer of his people came not on a fool's errand, nor spilt his precious blood in vain. The price was great, glorious, wonderful. The precious blood of the Son of God, as of a Lamb without blemish and without spot. What could it not effect? It was the price of pardon, we had sinned, the Saviour suffered; he died the death we finners had deserved. Pardon therefore is purchased, the price, the inconceivably great and immense price is paid. Settle the comfortable truth there. fore in your hearts; there needs no second payment, for there's no after claim. The law wants nothing more, stern juftice is appeased, and the
glorious work in every part is finished. Nor suffer it to slip out of your minds, that Jesus died for finners, the price is paid for the poor, the poor in spirit, and their's, as the purchased blefsing, is the kingdom of heaven. Rejoice and be glad in your reconciled God, for be was in Cbrijt reconciling the world unto hirejelf. Herod and Pontius Pilate who before were at enmity, were reconciled to each other in condemning Jesus ; but God, and sinners who were before at enmity are reconciled in the execution of that sentence, thro' the shedding of his most valuable blood, for when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son. Therefore do ye daily meditate on the blood and death of the dear Son of God, and draw your cure, a perfect cure, a cure for all the maladies of your fin-fick souls from the Redeemer's cross. He bled the precious balm poor wounded sinners want, nor is his blood grown old, nor has it lost it's power, He is a Saviour to to the uttermost for all that come to God by him, and whosoever comes, finners hear and lay up in your hearts the precious saying, I will in no wise cast out.
3dly. You are hereby also taught that salvation is not but by the blood of Christ, for there is no
justification but in consequence of his vicarious the death ; therefore they who strive and toil think
ing by their own self-laboured works to enter into heaven, do but spend their strength for nought, and their labour for that wbich fatisfieth not. Such are thieves and robbers, they refuse to come in by the door Christ Jesus, and attempt to climb up and enter another way; these rob God of the glory due to his name as the only Saviour. Il.
xlv. 21. They rob Christ of his glory, in pretending to join to his perfect and compleatly finished work, their own poor and paltry performances ; or by totally neglecting the great salvation, he has wrought out by his arm alone.
The Lord will be magnified in the salvation of his people, and had in reverence of all the saints ; the base and obnoxious idol of self-righteousness must not stand in the temple of the living God, Dagon shall fall and Merodach shall be broken in pieces, and the Lord alone shall be exalted. I am God and there is none else, and I will not give my glory to another, the glory of my juftice, which would be stained if I suffered sin to pass unpunished ; the glory of my holiness, which would be greatly obscured if I did not require a perfect righteousness for salvation; and the glory of my mercy, which would be totally eclipsed if salvation were a debt that was owing for some creature obedience.
4thly. You are to note herefrom, the exceeding sinfulness of sin, and the obnoxious state of the sinner in consequence thereof. How exceedingly offensive must sin be conceived to be, in the eyes of the immaculate Jehovah, seeing that his on ybegotten son, when considered as the finner's subftitute, is constrained to drink the bitter cup of unmixed vengeance ; nor was there abatement made him in the price, of one drop of his precious blood. Not all the manifestations of the divine displeasure against fin, in the most alarming and distressing judgments, fo loudly declare the refeniment of heaven, or paint the hideous monster in such terrifying colours, as the blood of the holy Jesus, spilt and poured out like water to expiate sin, and manifest to the finner that there M 2
was no other way for his reconciliation. Floods of water that shall deluge the earth and drown it's ungodly inhabitants ; fames of fire and brimstone that shall devour and depopulate whole countries; do not so much manifest God's hatred of fin, as the sufferings of his only-begotten and well-beloved Son. He was stricken, smitten of God and affiliated; he was wounded, bruised, chaftised, oppressed, and cut off out of the land of the living; he had done no violence, yet the Lord bruised bim, and put him to grief. The most exquisite sufferings of our blessed Lord, are described and thus set forth in a variety of expressions, adapted by infinite wisdom to the greatness and various sensations of sorrow, the illustrious sufferer felt; by the evangelical prophet, ch. liii. who remarks upon the whole, that transgression and iniquity, even our transgressions, our iniquities, were the cause. · Settle it then in your hearts as a truth momentous and undoubted, that sin when it seems most pleasing, is then most poisonous ; and when
folicited to compliance therewith, turn your eyes ; to yonder cross ; there see what sin has done, and be assured it is still the fame. And while you view the bleeding Lamb ftretched on the wood of his cross; ask your heart, Whence is all this? What has he done? Wretch that I am, what have I done? Have not my sins faftened him to the cross? Has not my unbelief pierced that tender bleeding heart, that now trembles in the pangs of death, and while bathed in it's own gore, yet flames with love? O grace unparallelled, matchless mercy! can it be that it should flame with love to me, a finner, and his murderer? Yes, adored be sovereign grace, adored be matchless
and superlative goodness, the finners furety bleeds, the finners Saviour prays, father forgive, nor did he bleed, or pray in vain. And if when we were yet without strength, and ungodly, Christ died for us, much more will he save us by living in us ; if while we were yet finners, he engaged by death to save us, how much more being saved he will iive to intercede for us. In a word, if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of bis Son, much more being reconciled, we ball be saved by his life ; which leads us to the second principal part of the text, and which presents us with a ftate of amity, from whence to infer the certainty of salvation secured unto us by his life.
Salvation respects, first, a deliverance from that death, our sins had deserved, and to expiatę which, the Redeemer shed his blood; this Elihu had an eye unto in that beautiful passage, Job xxxiii, 24, " deliver him from going down in66 to the pit, I have found a ransom; deliver him ; (Pedabhehu,) redeem him, pay the price for him, not of corruptibles, gold or silver, but precious blood, the blood of Christ, pure and spotless as a lamb without blemish. I have found a ran. Som, (Copber,) a covering, Christ Jesus the meffenger, the interpreter, the one of a thousand, the true mercy-feat ; in him I am pleased, in him my Toul acquiesces.?
This, our apostle also looks unto, ver. 9, “ much 66 more then being justified by his blood, we « shall be saved from wrath through him.". Sin being pardoned through the blood of atonement, can no more condemn, and the finner being justified through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, has nothing to fear from the rigour of the law,