Sivut kuvina
PDF
ePub

break through all the lines of a larger. We have some who are zealous for Moses: these are like the believing rulers, who were so zealous for the law that they thought it no crime to murder Paul. So we have some that preach up the law as the only rule, and then shoot at me for keeping it. They lay Christ for a foundation, and call in Moses to carry up the superstructure: Christ is to bear the weight, and Moses the glory. Such begin in the spirit, and end in the flesh; they first lead the sinner to cast his burden on Christ, and then load him with burdens that none can bear. They exalt the servant, dethrone the Master, and make the law the polisher of the gospel, instead of being subservient to it. I have formerly sat under some who so enforced the law upon all ranks, that I was led to think Christ had begun the work in my soul, but that I must finish it myself by keeping the law: and, as the preacher made no distinctions, he led me fairly back to the law; when I found as much enmity against God as ever, and thought I was in a more miserable state than before he meddled with me at all. And what fruits to the glory of God can spring from souls thus inflamed with rage and malice against him? If we are brought to love God, it is because we discover a love in him to us. "We love him because he first loved us." If we bring forth fruit to the glory of God, it is by virtue of a heart-felt union with the living Vine. "The branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no

more can ye, except ye abide in me. He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit, for without me ye can do nothing." But he that leads my soul to Moses is sure to destroy all my fruitfulness: from the Lord, not from the law, is my fruit found, Hos. xiv. 8. All the fruits that the law produces are sour grapes, untimely fruits, wild figs, and eye-service; and are produced from the fear of a criminal, and therefore justly called dead works, which must all be purged away by the blood of Christ before the soul can be saved.

It is a strait path that lies between a loose profession and a legal working: but the soul that is blessed with a divine unction from above has a sufficient leader to guide him into all truth, This I found in my own experience, when my judgment was much confused, and my understanding very much beclouded; yet I felt an inward teacher; for, if the legalist got hold of me, and I drank into his spirit, then I fell to work at mortifying my corruptions in my own strength; temptations then began to operate, sin prevailed, and I got into bondage, and found enmity to God himself spring up in my heart. And if, on the other hand, I listened to some loose professors, who cried out against my preaching up convictions by the law, and the feeling sense of pardon, peace, and love, by faith in Christ, then I lost all my peace and comfort. Thus the blessed inward teacher led me when I could not see my way; and

surely this fulfils the promise; "The wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein."

Now, that my reader may be encouraged to stick close in union with Christ Jesus, take the following considerations: the sword of justice, that was drawn at Eden's gate when God declared war with the world, was sheathed in Christ when peace was proclaimed. "Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the Lord of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered [from the stroke]: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones,' Zech. xiii. 7. Thus the sword of justice was sheathed in the body and soul of Jesus Christ; and the flame of wrath, that blazed on the edge of the sword, melted the very heart of the Saviour, when he said, "I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax, it is melted in the midst of my bowels," Psalm xxii. 14. Thus the flame of wrath melted the heart of Christ, until his precious blood quenched the flame. Hence this sword is said to be bathed, that is with the blood of Christ, in heaven, and shall never come down any more upon the real believer; but only upon legal workmongers, who are under the curse of the law; and therefore the sword must come down upon them, as the people of his curse, to judgment, Isa. xxxiv. 5.

[ocr errors]

Thou seest, reader, that the sword of justice was sheathed in the Saviour; the flame of wrath was quenched in his heart; and the curse of the

A

[ocr errors]

va tx semence ine to us all for sin,

a Curs, le being made a curse

Imus justce being satisfied

fr exempt bort istice and

I DHE ME ANË soc of Christ, as

I. and they are both agreed in him. and truth should go hand in hand to

வி

• Jastre and judgment are the habitation of to trout of grace: mercy and truth shall go ucion try face." Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound." Psalm lxxxix. 15.

[ocr errors]

The law that told us to do and live, transgress ant die. » now disarmed of its commanding and rundemning power as a covenant of works, and & 11 the heart of Christ. "Thy law is within my heart, shut ng m that ark; while his righteousDe able to the command of the law, and his death answerable to the sentence of it. Still at him, as our justification and redempv delivered from the commanding and

power of the law, as a covenant of and the voice is now changed from Do to Believe and live:' from 'Transgress to He that believeth shall never die." ~~ Christian, justice, judgment, and the dislaw, are in Christ Jesus: all judgment is itted to him; all power given him; every ise is yea and amen in him; all the treasures gace, wisdom, and knowledge; all the fulness he Spirit, and all the fulness of the Godhead, ed in him bodily. And all this that God may

[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

honour his dear Son, and magnify the riches of his grace in glory by him. The devil himself is wounded by his sword, bound by his chain, and trampled under his feet; as you read, "The Lord with his sore and great and strong sword shall punish leviathan, the crooked serpent, even leviathan, that piercing serpent, and he shall slay the dragon that is in the sea," Isa. xxvii. 1. He bound him with his chain, Rev. xx. 1; he trod upon the lion and adder, and the young lion he trampled under feet, Psalm xci. 13. Therefore cleave thou to Christ, and let his whole revealed mind and will be thy rule. Moses and his legal works, Elijah and his fiery zeal, willingly withdrew, as good servants ought, from the mount while the disciples were with Jesus, Matt. xvii. 8. And, when you hear men pointing the hardened and impenitent sinner to the blood of Christ, and sending happy souls to Moses' law for a rule and a yoke, regard not every Lo here, and Lo there;' but go to Christ for both your rule and your yoke. If thou art a believer, go not to Sinai, but cleave to another mount, as Isaiah tells you in his vision; "And it shall come to pass in the last days [mark that], that the mountain of the Lord's house [that is Christ, compare with Dan. ii. 35;] shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go, and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob, and he will

[ocr errors]
« EdellinenJatka »