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forgets the danger of the voyage. his believing people. He shall What will not a parent do to save justify many, even as many as bea beloved child? He will rush lieve in his name; for “ by him all into the fire, or plunge into the that believe are justified from all water, to rescue it from death; things, from which they could not and, if successful, will forget the be justified by the law of Moses.” perils to which he had exposed Acts, xiii. 39. Their own works himself, and be satisfied in the cannot justify them; but the Lord safety of his child. This, indeed, Jesus clothes them with the robe is but a faint image of the com- of his perfect and unspotted righpassion of Christ Jesus. He not teousness, and will present them only risked his life, but actually faultless before the throne of God. laid it down; not only suffered, Justification is here said to be but expired under his sufferings. communicated by the knowledge of But the end for which he suffered Christ; that is, a true and saving is answered: he sees a vast mul- knowledge of Christ is the means titude of the human race converted of our justification. This is agreeand saved, who, but for his dying able to the Apostle's doctrine of agonies, must have perished for justification by faith, Rom. v. 1; ever; he rejoices over them; “ be for faith in Christ supposes a presees of the travail of his soul, and vious knowledge of him. is satisfied."
cannot believe in him without havThe eternal Father, also, is ing known him; and that divine pleased to declare the benefits and saving knowledge of Christ, which those, who believe, shall which is from the Spirit of God, receive through the merits of his produces faith and obedience; and, well-beloved Son. “By his know- therefore, it is said, “
By his ledge shall my righteous servant knowledge shall my righteous serjustify many. Christ, as man, vant justify many.” There is a barwas the Father's righteous ser- ren speculative knowledge which vant: as God, he was equal with will not justify, and which is nearly the Father; but, when he became allied to, a dead faith ; but that man, he “ took upon him the form knowledge, of which the prophet of a servant."
Phil. ii. 7. It speaks in this passage, is holy, then became his duty to obey; and sanctifying, and saving. Our Lord he fulfilled that duty, not only as himself said of it, “This is life obliged to it, but as delighting in eternal, that they might know thee, it. My meat is to do the will of the only true God, and Jesus him that sent me, and to finish Christ, whom thou hast sent.' his work.” John, iv. 34: and John, xvii. 3. St. Paul counted again, he said, “I came down all things but loss, for the exfrom heaven, not to do mine own cellency of this knowledge of will; but the will of him that sent Christ Jesus his Lord; and deme." John, vi. 38. The obe- sired, above all things, “that he dience which Christ paid to the might know him and the power of divine law was willing, and it was his resurrection.” Phil. iii. 8–10: perfect; he is, therefore, called, and St. Peter wishes “to them, the Father's righteous servant ; and, who have obtained like precious by the apostle, St. John, “Jesus faith with us, through the righteChrist the righteous.” 1 John, ii. 1. ousness of God and our Saviour, His whole life, from the manger Jesus Christ” (or rather of our to the cross, was a life of devoted, God and Saviour, Jesus Christ), willing, perfect obedience : thus grace and peace, to be multiplied he fulfilled all righteousness him- “through the knowledge of God, self, and became the Justifier of and of Jesus, our Lord.” 2 Pet. i. 1, 2. The real knowledge of they will be tried by God's holy Christ, therefore, is an invaluable law, which reaches to the very blessing; it is like true faith, as thoughts and intents of the heart, distinguished from mere specula- and which requires absolute pertive notions, justifying, sanctify- fection; and, being weighed in ing, and saving.
that impartial balance, they must But though true saving faith, or be found wanting. There can be knowledge, is the means of our no justification without the saving justification, it is not the meritori- knowledge of Christ crucified; but ous cause of it; but only Christ's sentence of condemnation will be bearing the sins of his people; passed on every soul, that shall be therefore it is added, “ for he shall found destitute of it at the great day bear their iniquities." There is of our Lord's appearing and glory; no merit in a believer's knowledge, for as he will say to the righteous, or faith; it is the gift of God; and “Come, ye blessed of
Faall the merit is in Christ, for whose ther, inherit the kingdom prepared sake faith is given to those who for you from the foundation of the are partakers of it. The merito- world ;” he will say, also, to them rious cause of our justification, is on the left hand,“ Depart from in the sufferings and death of me, ye cursed, into everlasting Christ; and, therefore, it is said, fire, prepared for the devil and his Rom. v. 9, that we are “ justified angels.” Matt. xxv. 34. 41. by his blood, and shall be saved It behoves us, therefore, to ask from wrath through him.” The ourselves what knowledge we have saving knowledge of Christ is of Jesus Christ, whether the eyes only valuable, as it leads us to of our understanding have been look unto Jesus as bearing our sins, enlightened by the Spirit of God; and as giving his life a ransom so that we can in truth
with Matt. xx. 28. And the Apostle, “ Knowing that a man this looking unto Jesus, by a true is not justified by the works of the and lively faith, will be the Chris- law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, tian's consolation against the fear even we have believed in Jesus of death, and give him boldness Christ, that we might be justified in the day of judgment : for, “as by the faith of Christ, and not by it is appointed unto men once to the works of the law; for, by the die; but after this the judgment: so works of the law, shall no flesh be Christ was once offered to bear the justified." Gal. ii. 16. The quessins of many; and unto them that tion is, have we a practical exlook for him shall he appear the perience of this in our own souls ? second time, without sin, unto Is it our heart's desire and prayer, salvation." Heb. ix. 27, 28. that we may know Christ, not with
To him, therefore, we must that vain and empty knowledge look, if we would be justified in which puffeth up; but with that holy the sight of God; not to any thing and sanctifying knowledge which that we can do; but simply to the directs us to Christ, as bearing our Lord Jesus, as bearing our ini- iniquities, and, then, leads us to quities; for justification is a freely walk as becometh those who proby God's grace, through the re- fess to believe in his name? Many, demption that is in Christ Jesus." alas! are strangers to this holy Rom. iii. 24. Those who seek to and heavenly knowledge of Christ be justified in any other way, than crucified; many are careless about by Jesus Christ, will most certain- it; and, it is to be feared, that ly be condemned: instead of being numbers, who profess to have it, accounted righteous before God, deceive themselves with speculathey will be proved guilty; for tive knowledge, which is nothing
but a base counterfeit, and will every other grace, are connected leave them under guilt and con- with the saving knowledge of demnation at the last. The true Christ crucified. Wherefore, let knowledge of Christ will lead us believers “
grow in grace, and in to desire, as we know him more, the knowledge of our Lord and to serve him better; and, indeed, Saviour Jesus Christ.” 2 Pet. iii. the more we really know of Jesus 18. Let them set a high value on Christ, the more precious he will that divine knowledge of Christ be to our souls, the more earnestly Jesus, whereby, as the Father's we shall look to him as bearing righteous servant, he shall justify our sins; and the more we look to many; and let it be the prayer of him, the more we shall love him, their hearts, that, being strengthand the better we shall serve him. ened by the Spirit, they may Our minds will be more serious, “ know the love of Christ, which our conscience more tender, our passeth knowledge, and be filled walk more circumspect, our tem- with all the fulness of God. Eph. pers more subdued, our prayers iii. 19. more fervent; for all these, and
LETTER FROM A DYING FRIEND. MY DEAR FRIEND,
Shall I speak of the honours I now find myself on the bor- which mortals can bestow? They ders of the grave, and know that will give me no right to heaven. my few remaining sands will soon The most splendid of earthly be run. This world is fast fading diadems, the highest of earthly on my view, and, in a very short honours, I should not prize. I space of time, I must bid farewell, have a heavenly crown in view, I will not say an everlasting one, and hope, by the strength of my to all now near and dear to me. God, for the attainment of it. That most momentous period is, “ Could I but read my title clear,” indeed, near; I do not wish to I should depart in peace, pleased shun, I would rather welcome, its in being so early called away from approach.
this painful and dangerous pilgriEvents that formerly appeared mage; gladly, then, could I emimportant, I now look upon as brace the coffin as my bride, the trifling. For me, the riches, plea- grave my bridal bed. O pray sures, honours of the world, what for me, for I am very weak and are they? Can riches bribe death, helpless, that I may have grace or deprive the grave of its destined sufficient in the day of need--that prey ? Will it purchase me a pass- I may finish my course with joy. port to heaven, or enable me in any My dear friend, As I feel daily way to land on its blissful shores? more and more the value and the The pleasures of the world, can I importance of religion, so am I enjoy them now? Nature would daily more and more anxious, that supply the greatest luxuries to my those I love, who will be rememtable in vain; the finest works of bered in
prayers the few art, the most glorious achieve- short days I have to sojourn here, ments of genius, would be to me a should rise above the love of this mere blank in comparison with Cal- world, and fix their constant vary's Mount.
thoughts on that state to which we Let me look on Golgotha,
are fast hastening. I know you Weep and love my life away:
love your Saviour; endeavour, While I see him on the tree,
pray, to love him with a greater Weep, and bleed, and die for me!
degree of earnestness. He is now
I should have recollected my only comfort, my only source of the words of our Lord, “ Whosojoy. When I look back upon my ever shall deny me before men, him past life, the recollection of
will I also deny before my Father Means and mercies, bow abused! which is in heaven," and have de
Time and strength, how misemployed ! termined to spend and to be spent my vile ingratitude, in almost in the service of my Redeemer. I daily forgetting the God who suffered idle and frivolous excuses bought me! I am filled with deep to prevail, I put off opportunities self-abasement! I abhor myself in for still more convenient opportudust and ashes! But when I am
nities. May God forgive me for enabled to look up to him as the his dear Son's sake! Lamb slain from the foundation of For Jesus! Jesus! there I'll cling, the world, as the all-sufficient sa- I'll crowd beneath his sheltering wing; crifice, I hope for mercy in re
I'll clasp the cross, and holding there, deeming love, and glory in the Even me, o bliss! bis love may spare. thoughts of death.
Be not con- I am tired and exhausted. I have tent in endeavouring only to make not said all I intended, yet must your own calling and election sure; conclude. A fear, however,-I think of the lost sheep of the house should not say fear,—that this may of Israel; pray for the peace of be my last letter to you, would inJerusalem. In this I greatly failed. duce me to go on, were I able, beYou know my timid feelings. I fore this throbbing heart, this beatcould be silent in a season when a ing pulse be still. Blessed be God, word spoken might have been of I can go to a throne of grace; and service to the souls of some. I there, there I will remember you! ought to have been bold in the Ever, my dear friend, cause of Christ; I should have laid Most affectionately yours, every such feeling at the foot of the
ON CHRISTIAN CONDUCT. SIR,
If you shall deem the following without, or cause persecution to Hints on the wisest mode of a Chris- the followers of the Lamb. He tian's demeanour in the sight of a must ever bear in mind that pre. deriding world worthy of public no- cept of his Divine Master, " Let tice, they are very much at your your light so shine before men,
that service. They are particularly ad- they may see your good works, dressed to those who profess the and glorify your Father which is in sentiments pervading your work; heaven." and, should they meet with ac- 2. The imprudent zeal of some, ceptance, I may perhaps forward who obtrude the subject of religion another
paper on the same subject. on unfit occasions, in improper 1. The men of this world greatly places, and to unknown persons, is delight to expatiate on, and upbraid, often prejudicial to its interests in the incautious or disreputable deeds the eyes of the world. Our converof religious professors; not with sation, indeed, ought to be seasonany view of producing amendment, ed with salt, and important truths but with the design of bringing re- should be brought forward where proach upon religion. The Chris- likely to produce good effect; but, tian's duty then is, to exercise great yet, pearls should not be cast becircumspection lest he
a fore those who know not how to stumbling block to those who are appreciate them; nor should the
wisdom of the serpent, any more be ashamed, when he cometh, in
Many good works, in- to convince all, that we are, in-
proper to sneer at, or needlessly to 3. It is great folly in a believer expose, the weaknesses that are to to be afraid of owning his creed; be seen in any not of our own comand greater, to be deterred from munion. The writer has heard a acting up to it by ridicule: he can- dissenter blamed, by worldly pernot openly side with the worldly, sons, for inveighing against a miyet is desirous of evading inquiry, nister of the Establishment: and or of concealing his sentiments, however much we may differ from respecting religion, in order to dissenters, or dissenters from us, escape animadversion. Such pu- we ought ever to recollect, that, if sillanimous conduct, however, not indeed believers, we are engaged only gives his adversaries cause in promoting and maintaining the for triumph; but seldom fails in cause of Christ against the comthe end to entail more contempt mon enemy of all true piety; and upon himself. How much better are, therefore, acting a traitorous would it be, to face the opponent part when seduced to join with with a cautious, yet contident, scoffers. It is, also, exceedingly boldness; in the consciousness, wrong unnecessarily to makeknown that greater is he that is for us, the frailties and errors of prothan those who are against us; fessors, especially of eminent proand careless about the opinion en
fessors. On the contrary, we tertained of us for non-conformity ought to pray for such, who walk to the fashion of this world, see- pot irreproachably; to beseech ing that we walk after that of the them, in the spirit of meekness, to highest court, which is the hea- look to their ways, and, at any venly. “Whosoever,” saith the rate, not to publish their failings, Lord Jesus, “ shall be ashamed of unless truth or duty require us to me and of my word, in this adul. engage in so painful a service. terous and sinful generation; of
6. The best of causes might, him, also, shall the Son of man perhaps, be strengthened, if ChrisDEC. 1823.