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ness of the Godhead bodily;" and those who would strip Christ of his divinity, not only expose your souls to eternal wretchedness, but they go to charge falsehood on the dear and blessed Redeemer of our souls, because they deny the truth of what he said, when he declared, " I and the Father are one; I in Him, and He in me." And again, in the Revelations, he says, " I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the ending, the first and the last."
Now, here you perceive is all fulness—here is deity. You see at once concentered in Christ all that Jehovah, the Father, can possibly demand at his hands on your behalf. You see embodied in Christ, in your nature, all that you as vile, weak, perishing sinner can possibly need—you see his sufficiency in all things. Here is something thatyoumayrestyour souls upon. It is the Godhead that stamps eternity, immutability, and infinity on Jesus Christ, and this, observe, on all that Jesus Christ did in our nature. Yes, deity stamps perfection on his person— the very perfection of all excellency. Deity inscribes on his mission, Immanuel, God with us, God on our side, God embarked in our interests, and therefore the God that loved us. Deity, besides, writes infallability on his mediatorial engagements. It sheds a lustre on every name, and on every office ; and withal, it gives a seal and sanction, and perfection, and excellency to his mediatorial work which nothing but deity can give it; and God gave it, when he gave it in Christ by virtue of the union of the manhood with Godhead, as it is expressly declared of the work by which Christ hath accomplished the redemption of our souls, " that he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified."
And besides this, observe further, if you contemplate Jesus Christ as the Son of God—as God in our nature, you give the love that he manifested in
his incarnation, all the character and all the properties of an everlasting love. Oh, it is a joy unspeakable that thrills through the soul of man when he contemplates the love that redeems his soul. When you read, my Christian hearers, an account of the goodness of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, I say, when you read the record of his love, who went about doing good, when you hear of the great tenderness, and patience, and compassion, that he manifested in the days when he sojourned on earth, while he was healing all manner of diseases, while he was filling the hearts of men with love, and peace, and joy—when you read an account of this, the tear silently steals down the cheek, while the heart is full of peace and joy within, overwhelmed with the contemplation of a love so infinite and so great. And if you follow that stream till it finds its way to your own soul, if you will follow that love, the personal and individual experience of it in your own heart, when you reflect on the infinite goodness that has been manifested in the revelation of it to your own soul, that it is a love that has broken a heart of stone—a love that has opened the blind eyes—a love that has turned you from the error of your ways—a love that lias discovered to you, that had you pursued the path you were going, you would perhaps have sunk ere this in the vortex of everlasting destruction—a. love that brought you into the liberty of the church of God—a love that delivered you, as it is written in the twenty-third verse, from the power of darkness, and translated you into the kingdom of the dear Son of God—a love that gave you a title to heaven— that brought down heaven into your soul—a love that taught you to feel the power of God revealed in the inner man —when you feel this, and when you do experience this now, how does it waft your soul to heaven in praise and adoration. Here, my brethren, are broad
rivers and streams sufficient to lave the soul in peace, and joy, and gladness. But when you arc led to trace back these streams to the fountain head, and see the love that is manifested unto your souls, is a love that had its origin in eternity, that it sprung in the heart of God before the world you occupy was made—when you learn that the incarnation of God's dear Son was only the manifestation of that love— when you learn that it was love which induced the Son of God to take your nature upon him, in order that he might make your nature the channel of communication between the love of his Father and your soul. I say, when you trace the streams of love that are in your soul unto this fountain head, and find that the spring of your salvation is without a date, without a beginning, then you must conclude, inevitably, that it will be without an end, because it is the everlasting love of Jehovah Jesus, who was the beginning of all things, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.
Now take away the divinity of Christ, and where will you date the source from whence the love shall spring that brings salvation to your heart? Oh, there is no consolation in such a creed as that. And then what is it that gives such efficacy to the sacrifice of Christ, that when it is applied to the wounded conscience and the broken heart, when it is spiritually applied to the heart that it brings such peace home to the soul, that it causes the troubled waters to rest, that it hushes the storm, and delivers from every source of apprehension? What is it that gives the sacrifice of Christ this efficacy—this internal efficiency? It is because God is in that sacrifice, God is in that blood which cleanses your heart from an evil conscience, and therefore we are directed to "take heed, and feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood." What is it that gives the advocacy of Christ that
prevailing authority? It is because there is in it an infinite fulness, a display of every attribute, and every perfection. It is because in him there is an infinity of wisdom, an infinity of love, and an infinity of power—because he is Christ, the power of God, and the wisdom of God.
Now, my brethren, if Christ had not infinite power, if he were not the wisdom of God, I would ask how would it be possible that he could ever undertake to nogotiate, to manage, to conduct, and controul all the cases and circumstances and concerns of his church and people? How many cases croud before his court—how many errands are brought before his throne every moment, moment by moment; yea, multiply the millions upon millions moment by moment, and who shall take upon himself to explain the number of cases and circumstances, and many of the greatest perplexity, many of the greatest intricacy? How many afflictions, how many sorrows and distresses are thus brought and laid as it were upon his altar, waiting on them for redress, and counsel to direct, to uphold, to keep, and to relieve, and ten thousand other wants and evils, to which he as the head of the church must listen, and if his wisdom were not infinite, how could he meet them all? Here again we must clearly see on the strength of demonstration that Christ is God, and thus might we run through every attribute.
Large, indeed, must be the heart of Christ to enter into all the feelings and all the sorrows of all his people; yea, enlarged must be the boundaries and limits of his soul who can enter into all the feelings and sorrows of his people with all the sympathies of Mb own heart not neglecting one, adininstering a blessing to all and a blessing to each individual, as though the care of one solitary individual was all that to which be had to attend. And infinite must be the arm by which he keeps, by which he preserves, by which he protects his people. Nothing short of the arm of God could preserve the church, and guide it through the wilderness into the possessions of that inheritance, the heavenly Canaan which he has reserved beyond the grave for all his ransomed and redeemed people. His fulness, therefore, my brethren, you see is an infinite fulness, and if it be an infinite fulness who has that fulness but God—that fulness is in Christ, therefore Christ is God.
We pass on to observe in the Second place, That The Fulness 6f God Is
AN INEXHAUSTIBLE FULNESS.
This is another conclusive argument to prove that the fulness of Christ is the fulness of God, because it is inexhaustible. If the fulness of Christ were the fulness of a mere creature, why then that fulness must have had a beginning, and if it has had a beginning, then it may have an end. And here we might say again, if we were to add together all the graces that could be accumulated, that were to be found in all the creatures under heaven, and if we were to treasure them up in Christ, separate from his union with Deity, all those graces would not be sufficient. Why ? Because it would be liable to fade away, it would die, it would fail, it would be exhausted by the millions of guilty and diseased souls that are every day coming to the fountain, they would soon drain it dry, and it would be proved that Christ out of God were insufficient to meet all the exigencies of his people.
No, my brethren, the fulness that is necessary to reach the boundless, endless, countless exigencies of his people, must be as boundless as the stars of heaven, and as countless as the sand on the sea shore. Is there one solitary instant that you can stand alone? Is there a single moment that you can put your finger and say, you are not in danger of falling away and perishing for ever? Will you call to re
membrance how often you have been on the very verge of falling, one foot, perhaps, over the precipice, and yet you were held on and held up— perhaps fallen and yet restored? Can you call to remembrance how often you have grieved the Spirit of God by the perpetration of the same offence, adding aggravation to your iniquity? Can you call to remembrance how often you have vowed, how often you have promised, and how often you have violated your vows and broken your promises? Can you call to remembrance without emotion the many tender, kind, and gracious invitations of the crucified Saviour to come to him, that you might find rest for your souls —that your souls may be renewed within you—that you may have his Spirit in your souls—that your souls may be made a partaker of the Divine nature, and that you may be united to him? Can you call to remembrance the many overtures of tender expostulation and complaint of Immanuel, God with us, that you will not come unto him, that you might have life? And is not the patience with which he has borne all this an infinite patience? Had the patience of Christ been the patience of a mere man, would you have been here? Oh, it is owing to the goodness of the Lord that we have not before this been consumed! And why? Because his compassions fail not. Thepatience of Jesus is an inexhaustible patience, and therefore it is, my Christian brethren, that he has all this time borne with you. I say how often and how long have you tried his patience—how long have you proved his patience, and how long and how much has his patience been tried by the millions of the earth, the millions that have peopled this lower world, for now nearly six thousand years, and still Jehovah Jesus is infinite in patience, he is the God of patience and long forbearance, still he waits, and waits in order to be gracious.
And why, my brethren, is he thus? Why does he wait? Why is his patience infinite? It is because his patience is more than that of a mere creature—it is because his compassion is impregnated with deity, and therefore, it is that your enemies do not prevail against you. I would here ask, wherefore is it that the combinations that have been made from time to time against the church of Christ, have never been able to prevail against it? Why is it that the multiplied enemies that have united hand in hand to crush the poor people of God have never succeeded? How is it that they could never overtop the walls of Zion? It is because divinity is in those walls—" Mount Zion has salvation for walls and for bulwarks." It has the heights of deity on its side, and therefore no enemy can scale that wall. And why is it that the wiles and the devices of Satan, that the cunning craftiness of the spirit of the power of the air has never been able to separate you from him? How is it that you have not been duped by his devices? It is because there is in Christ the depths of deity, that sink deeper than all the devices that can be laid against you. There are depths of wisdom in Immanuel that can confront and cause you to subvert and escape the most subtle devices that can be planned against your peace and happiness. It is an inexhaustible fulness, therefore, it must be the fulness of God.
We will now make a few remarks on the last part of our subject, where we design to show you, That It Is
NOT ONLY AN INEXHAUSTIBLE FULNESS, BUT THAT IT IS AN ABIDING
Fulness. "It pleased the Father, that in him should all fulness dwell." All these infinite, these inexhaustible, and unsearchable riches of Christ, which are the materials of this fulness of which we are speaking, all these are treasured up in Jesus Christ as the repository, they are laid up in him as
the rich treasury and fountain ever springing, ever full, ever flowing, and never failing. It is well observed by one, and worthy of your remembrance, my brethren, who says, "the man Jesus never had, and never will have any existence separate from his union with deity." And, inasmuch as his human nature, through which the fulness of grace is communicated unto the souls of men, is inseparably united unto the godhead, the fulness that is in Christ is an indwelling fulness, and there abideth for ever; therefore, it is said of Christ, that he is a very present help, because his fulness is an essential fulness. Not in him merely to-day and to-morrow; no, but it dwelleth in him for ever, grace to help in every time of need, and therefore, we come to him at all times and find him to be the Saviour that we so much stand in need of, because by virtue of this abiding fulness which is in him, he is everywhere present. Remember the pure river of life, which is described in the Revelations, clear as crystal flows from the throne of God and of the Lamb, and so long as that throne shall last, that river will flow, because Christ in God is the eternal Jehovah, Jehovah Jesus, the rock of ages. All the streams of love, and mercy, and grace, that we receive, flow from Christ the rock of ages. The riven rock follows his church through every stage of its progress through the wilderness, and therefore he is every where at the same time, at the same moment, and therefore ready to meet the case and the exigency of every soul. Oh, how full of peace, and comfort, and consolation, my brethren, is it for us to behold God in Christ—that our Saviour is the everlasting Jehovah Jesus —that he is united unto God, very God and very man, and therefore he is able to save us unto the very uttermost and all that come unto Goo by him. He is the eternal advocate that prevails with the Father for the accomplishment of every purpose that he takes in hand, and for the answer of every prayer that is brought before him by his praying people.
Oh, when I consider these things, my brethren, and then reflect on the sorry system that is adopted by the Socinians, how much is it to be lamented that men can be so blind to their own happiness and their own peace as to refuse these things. Those who believe in Christ, the God whom they adore, know that he is with them always, every where, and at all times. If you ascend up into the heaven, he is there—if you go to the uttermost parts of the earth, he is there also. Thus he is the mighty and great Jehovah. If you go to yonder penitent and broken-hearted sinner, you shall find that Jehovah Jesus is there also. There is not a weary traveller that he has not sustained—there is not a heart that is panting after him that he is not drawing to receive of his fulness, that he may be made a partaker of that fulness, which is a communicable fulness, a fulness that fills the church of Christ, which is the fulness of him that filleth all in all. I conceive, therefore, that we are justified in our conclusion, that inasmuch as the fulness of Christ is proved to be an infinite fulness, an inexhaustible fulness, and an abiding and indwelling fulness, it can be no other than the fulness of
God, and therefore Christ mast be God.
Oh, my brethren, what a fulness is there here! Although there may be as many different cases as there are souls assembled here to-night, still there is wisdom and counsel in Christ Jesus to meet them all. He is allsufficient—he knows them all—he knows the secrets of your heart—and he is prepared to hear all your prayers, and receive all complaints. Oh, remember this. It is our duty to preach to you Christ Jesus, and him crucified, as that eternal Jehovah, who purchased the church with his own blood, in order that we may bring you to him, because he has undertaken to do all for those who commit their souls, and all that which concerneth their souls into his hands. Let me beseech you, therefore, to bring your burthen to the Lord this night—let me beseech you to remember, that in trusting to Christ you are trusting to God—that underneath you there are the everlasting arms —that when you are made one with Christ, and Christ one with you, you are made partakers of that new creation which emanates from God—that germ of eternal life which is the earnest of the Father's love, which is the pledge of the love of the Son, which is the seal of the Holy Ghost,—the fiat of the Eternal Trinity—the Lamb's mark, and the title to heaven.
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