Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

. parish he had resided upwards of sixty years, and where, for the Jatt twelve years of his life, he attended on his son's ministry.

Mr. M. may with strict propriety be classed among the good, the great, and useful of society. In his personal appearance, there was nothing to impress a stranger with a favorable idea of his talents; but in company, in his conversation evidenced marks of superior sense and prevailing piety, and rendered him an instructive and entertaining companion. Influenced by the power of divine grace, he glorified God in his generation. His soul was the peaceful residence of all the social virtues. In the discharge of the filial, fraternal, conjugal, and parental duties, he was cheerful and exact. The urgencies of business were never suffered to intrude upon the more urgent claims of his soul. In persecution for righteousness sake "his heart was fixed, trusting in the Lord;" and at length he had the happiness to experience, that God had "redeemed his soul from all adversity, and brought him through fire and water, into a wealthy place." Many years he lived On Jesus' Christ, as the alpha and omega of his own salvation, and possessed the enviable talent of recommending him to others with peculiar advantage. His mind was equally averse to the leaven of Pharisaical pride and Antinomian presumption; which he considered as dangerous extremes, and against which his exertions were Uniformly and equally directed....Though he was never dignified .with the epithet of reverend, or elevated to the pulpit, yet by the discreet husbandry of his time, he was enabled to compose those works, which, during his life-time, rendered him useful to thousands; and •which will embalm his memory, and convey instruction to succeeding generations.

Reader, for thee this memoir was collected....not for the entertainment of thy leisure moments, but for the improvement of thy future days. Learn from the character and conduct of a private individual, that real worth, heavenly wisdom, and extensive usefulness, are not confined to men of public profession. Let Jesus and his salvation be thy first concern. Assured of his favor, make it thy study to live for God, and glorify him in thy body and spirit, which are his. Then, when called to drop the veil of mortality, thou wilt survive in the esteem of his saints, the excellent of the earth, and be rewarded by the admiration of posterity....while thy happy spirit, wafted to the regions of bliss, shall enjoy in the beatific presence of Jesus, ineffable and eternal felicity. ,

SPIRITUAL TREASURY

FOR THE

CHILDREN OF GOD, SCc.

JANUARY 1.

IHOU shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord shall name.... ha. lxii. 2.

This is predicted of the church of God; which, according to covenant-trahsactions of the glorious Trinity, stands in the nearest and dearest relation to Jesus her head. She is here spoken of as a single person, Thou: she is called "Christ's body,"....Col. i. 24....and "the bride, the Lamb's wife,"....Rev. xxi. 9....of whom, saith God the Father, "I have loved thee with an everlasting love,"...Jer. xxxi. 3. Yea, salth the Son of God to his Father, of all his beloved members, *'Thou hast loved them as thou hast loved me....and thou lovest me before the foundation of the world,"....John xvii. 23, 24. O most comforting truths of God's word! how ancient is the love of God to Ms church! That God should love us miserable sinners at all is amazing; but that he should love us with the very same everlasting onchangeable love, wherewith he loves his own beloved Son, this surpasseth all knowledge! This love is the .source of all blessings i*» time; this love secures all happiness in eternity.

The Son of God has manifested his infinite love to his church, by Conflicting with and overcoming all the powers of earth and hell for her sake; He most clearly purchased her, in a way of strict justice, with his most precious blood. But he finds every one of his ransomed ones branded with this old name of infamy, a Sinner: it being near six thousand years since first entailed. By nature we are all old in sin, and dead in sin: but being predestinated unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ, and to be conformed to his image, to the praise of the glory of God's grace, therefore we shall be called by a new name. This the Lord, the Spirit, eftecteth. Being bor n of the Spirit, and baptized with the Holy Ghost into the faith of Jesus, the Lord calls us by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord shall name. This is it, verse 12, "The holy people....the redeemed of the Lord....thou shalt be called Sought Out." O the blessedness of being sought Vol. I. B

out! how precious is He who sought us out! He sought us in the ruins of the fall. He found us in a most miserable condition; but he calls us by a New Name, which signifies new creatures in our living head, who is the New Man. This he makes us. Then we experience the blessedness of a new state in, and of a new life from Jesus. He is a new and living way to us. By faith we walk with God....live upon Jesus....feel sweet fellowship with him....enjoy comforting communion from him....and have joyful access to the Father through him. Thus the Lord writes "a new name upon his members, which no man knoweth, saving he who receiveth it."—.Rev. ii. 17.

Thus, as Luther testifies, 'a christian is a new creature in a new world.' He is a subject of a new King, whose name is Love; and of a new kingdom, wherein dweljeth righteousness. He is possessed of new hopes....new pleasures....new desires and new joys. Yes, and he finds new fears....new sorrows....new conflicts, yea, and new enemies too. Though that old serpent the Devil and Satan, who deceiveth the whole world, is cast out of us, he still wageth war against us. What then? every trial we meet with, every temptation we are beset with,.shall only glorify the riches of God's love to us, and the power of the grace of Jesus in us....shall learn us the use of our spiritual weapons....deaden our affections to earth....quicken our longings for glory....endear Jesus more to our hearts, so as with ardency to cry out, O that I may be found in Him! how glorious the privileges! how animating the prospect of all such new-named souls! they are interested in all new covenant blessings. New wine of gospel-peace and love is put into such new bottles. A new song, "Salvation to. the Lamb that was slain," inspires their tongues. Such are lovingly called, by the word of their Father, and powerfully enabled, by the Spirit of his grace, to serve and glorify him, "not in the oldness of the letter," but in newness of the Spirit, in "righteousness and true holiness before him all the days of their life:" happy new year to such new-named souls! every revolving year on earth brings them nearer their Father's house, their Saviour's kingdom in glory. Thus, "if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature; old things are passed away, behold all things are become new."....2 Cor. v. 17.

My Jesus, my almighty friend. My feet shall travel all the length

When I begin thy praise, Of the celestial road,

Where will the growing numbers end! And marchvvith courage in thystrength,

The numbers of thy grace! To see my Father God.

Still has my life new wonders seen When I am fill'd with sore distress

Repeated ev'ry yean For some surprising sin,

Behold my days that yet remain, I'll plead thy peifefl righteousness,

I trust them to thy care. And mention none but thine.

Thou art my everlasting trust, How will my lips in glory tell

Thy Person I adore: Thy vict'ries, O my King!

And since I knew thy graces first, My soul redeem'd from sin andhell,

I speak thy glories more. Shall thy salvation sing.

[ocr errors]

Behold the Lamb of God, which iakelh azcay the sin of the world....John i. 29.

'". - Nothing can make poor sinners truly happy, but that which taketh away the cause of all misery, sin. This is effected. The Lamb of God hath taken away all sin, by his sacrifice for us. When, by the eye of faith, we behold this Lamb, then all sin is taken away out of our conscience. When a soul thinks, 'Sin has condemned me before God; the law accuseth me daily; it works wrath in my conscience continually; and 1 am oft ready to cry out, O wretched that I am, who shall deliver me?' Thanks be to God for a precious Redeemer. The Lamb, which God provided, hath done it for ever. All our iniquities were laid upon him. "He bare it in his own body on the tree," the sin, the whole of sin, every sin of all that shall believe in him, to the end of the world. By the sacrifice of himself he put all away, out of the sight of God, as one puts away an offensive thing. He bore it away into a land of forgetfulness, as a thing that is hurtful. So then saith God the Father, to all his children in Christ, "Your sins and your iniquities I will remember no more.".... Jer. xxxi. 34.

But one is often ready to say, How can this be true? for I daily see I am a sinner; the remembrance of sin is before me, in my thoughts; though, for a season, time may efface sin from my. memory, yet it recurs afresh upon my conscience. It may, it will do so, O soul; and nothing can effectually take it away but this, "Behold the Lamb of God." He taketh sin away now, this present moment, every moment: at what time soever thou beholdest Jesus by the eye of faith, all the sin which troubles thee, thou wilt see it laid on him, and he taketh it away from thee. O how sweet to have no more conscience of sin!

Continually to behold this Lamb of God, is life to our souls, and death to our sins. Sin cannot terrify with its guilt: sin cannot prevail in its power while the heart is looking to this Lamb of God, for he says, "Look unto me, and be saved." Astonishing mystery! but this is God's truth. Thus to behold, is to be happy. Thus to look, is to be holy. May this, O my soul, be thy daily employ below, till thou beholdest the Lamb in the midst of the throne above. Thanks to the gracious Father, for the gift of this precious Lamb; thanks to this holy Lamb for bearing and taking away sin; and thanks to the loving Spirit, for shewing this Lamb to poor sinners and Me.... "God forbid I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ."....Gal. vi. 14.

If sin most vile to me appears, This is the truth by which we live: What must th' Omniscient see! By Faith beholding Christ.

But, God beholds us in his Lamb, Our consciences from guilt are freed j From sin forever free. Then unbelief resist.

Utile children, keep yourselves from idols. Aiiien..„ lJohnv. 21. . .;

Idolatry is founded in ignorance of Jesus, the true God, and eternal life. None are spiritual worshippers of God but believers in, Jesus. There are many idols in the world, suited to the pride and lusts of aii* corrupt nature. These we are cautioned against. But^ in reading this very exhortation, the idol of free-will is ready to prer sent itself; as though disciples, by their own power, were to keep themselves. This notion opposes the Spirit and power of Jesus* and springs from that grand idol, pride. Pride introduces the idpl of self-righteousness. This blinds the eye to the glory of .the righteousness of Christ, freely imputed by God, through faith. Thus thjo trinity of idols, free-will, pride, and self-righteousness, are in unity with each other. By the simple faith of Jesus, we are daily to guard our hearts against all their specious pretensions.

So also, every outward object suited to our corrupt nature, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life; these naturally call for the attention of our minds, tend to attract the affections of our hearts, and promise us pleasure, happiness, and joy. But if these are sought unto, coveted, and enjoyed, they also become idols....they rival Jesus....they rob our hearts of the consolation of the Saviour'* love....and him of the glory due to his name; which is ever the indispensable duty of all his beloved disciples, to give unto him Qnli. Shall we then say of our own righteousness, or our sins, ye are pur glory! Shall we at all hope in the one? shall we ever seek happiness from the other? Verily, if so, our hearts are not right with God: our souls are not sincere and upright with Jesus. Can we at any time halt between two opinions in our conduct, Jesus and self? God and the world? O where then is our faith in Jesus, our love to God! Ha$ not God manifested love enough to us, in the gift of his beloved Son? Has not Jesus done enough, suffered enough, to attract every affecT tion, and to engage our whole hearts in love to himself? Has not the holy Spirit so clearly and fully revealed the love of the Father, and the salvation of the Son, as to make us happy? We must confess this. Surely then conscious shame, holy blushing, godly sorrow, should fill our hearts, if we act not as chaste virgins to our heavenly bridegroom. While we cry in the fervency of prayer to the divine Spirit for power, we shall in the fervor of love, and in the resolution of faith, say with Ephraim, "Get ye hence: what have I to do any more with idols?"....Hos. xiv. 8.

Mortals with joy behold his face, Archangels leave their high abode,

Th' eternal Father's only Son; To learn new myst'rics her* i and

How full of truth ! how full of grace! tell

When thro* hi* eyes the Godhead The loves of our descending God, • shone. The glories of Immanuel.

« AnteriorContinuar »