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for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord, to prepare kis way.--JOHN THE BAPTIST. I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias. He saw the spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him. And lo! a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.-MATTHEW. Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which, being intera preted; is, God with us.-JOHN THE EVANGELIST. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.-THOMAS said unto Jesus, My Lord, and my God.--PETER. Lord, thou knowest all things ; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus Christ, he is Lord of all.NATHANAEL. Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the king of Israel.-JOHN THE DI,
There are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit: and these three are one. We know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. He is Lord of lords, and King of kings.—THE WRITER TO THE HEBREWS. God, who at sundry times, and in divers manners, spake in time past by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son; the brightness of his glory, and the exfiress image of his person. Jesus Christ, the same yeso
terday, to-day, and for ever.-Paul. Christ came, whe is over all, God blessed for ever. He is the image of the invisible God.-A COMPANY OF HIS DISCIPLES. Now are we sure that thou knowest all things, and needest not that any man should ask thee: by this we believe that thou camest forth from God. To these testimonies we may add, that MATTHEW, MARK, LUKE, and JOHN, severally, have recorded certain extraordinary acts in the life of Jesus; that he healed the sick with a word; controlled the boisterous elements; subdued the rage of deyils; and caused the polluted dead to live at his command; each of which, with numberless other displays of goodness and power, may justly be considered a comment upon the foregoing testimonies of the Divinity of Christ. To all which, let us add the testimony of the JEWISH NATION : Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he said, God was his Father, making himself equal with God.
From this exhibition of evidence it is certain that the primitive followers of Jesus perfectly understood their Master to have claimed an equality with God; aiid that by the displays of his glory, he was justly entitled to their worship and adoration. Had Jesus pretended an inferior, or a subordinate divinity, the Jews would not have exhibited the charge of blasphemy against him.
Now let us proceed to gain satisfaction for ourselves in the important truth of the Godhead of Christ. Surely we have advanced already far enough to believe the necessity of its being inscribed on our hearts; for, if Jesus be not what he is said to be, the Gospel must be a fable, our profession vain, and we yet in our sins. In order, therefore, to receive and to feel the force of truth, let us review the intention of the evidences already mamed. I am disposed to say, that none of the witnesses among the disciples were inclined to disguise their sentiments, any more than did the Jewish counsel; they spake freely, without restraint, and believed what they said. And from this combination of testimony, ought we not to be as ready to credit the real character of Jesus as the fame of Alexander, or any other person transmitted to us by attested history? If not, surely our reason must be pronounced unreasonable. - But we will go farther; we have examined the natural life of Jesus, and we find no fault in him; nor have his most inveterate enemies attempted so to do. Compare, therefore, the moral character of Jesus with his claim to the divinity, and both must stand or fall together.
How the fulness of the Godhead dwelt in Jesus bodily, or how his divine and human natures were united, are neither necessary, nor indeed possible, for us to know. No man yet has been able to determine how his own body and spirit were united; and if man is thus a mystery to himself, why should he cavil at the great mystery of godliness, God manifest in the flesh? And, if the expres sions of the mind, and the actions of the body, be sufficient to demonstrate, that man is a rational living being, why should we not be satisfied with the sentiments of Jesus, and the supernatural acts of his life, which prou claim his eternal power and Godhead? Such an extraordinary person as Emmanuel, God with us, became absolutely necessary to rescue us from woe. The law and the justice of Jehovah must be satisfied, or man must perish. Jesus, however pure in humanity, could not, in the scale of human being, possess more merit than for himself; nor could he by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him. On the other hand, the Godhead could never have stood in man's place, obeyed, suffered, died. But in Jesus the human and the divine natures are so united as to constitute one glorious REDEEMER and MEDIATOR, taking equal part with God and man. The manhood of Jesus corresponded with the requisitions of law and of justice ; obeyed, suffered, died; while the infinite dignity of his person, in union with the Godhead, formed a source of the most valuable merit to redeem a number that no man can number!
It is wholly owing to the dignity of the person of Jesus, God-man, that we account for the perfections of his natural and moral life, which have been the subject of our inquiry in the preceding discourse. The mutable nature of man was united to the immutability of God. Jesus, therefore, is with propriety called the second Adam. The virtues of the first soon faded, and involved his posterity in guilt; the second, the Lord from heaven, abideth in virtue, honour, and glory, for ever!
With the highest pleasure we may now invite the sensible sinner to look unto Jesus, able and mighty to save.. Our Redeemer is the Lord of Host, the Holy One of Israel. None ever trusted in him and were confounded. Draw near, ye heavy laden with guilt and sorrow, Jesus shall give you rest.
Here is firm footing; here is solid rock!
Let the Christian triumph in the matchless character of Jesus, and from thence draw the satisfactory conclusion
of the reality of his religion. It is, indeed, a source of pleasure, that among the many enemies of Jesus, ancient and modern, who have ridiculed his birth, and the indigence of his disciples; who have opposed his doctrines, and vilified him as a magician for the miracles he performed, not one of them have reproached him with immorality. While this affords unspeakable pleasure to a follower of Jesus, he will not forget, that the next intention of the holy life of his Lord in fulfilling the precepts of the law, was to work out a righteousness for the justification of sinners, and to set an example that we should follow his -steps. O Christian, read with joy the life and virtues of your Lord! Let benevolence, truth, piety, and fortitude reside in your breast; and be so operative in your life, that your family, the world, and the Church, may take knowledge of you, that you have indeed been with Jesus, and that wisdom is justified of her children.