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ON THE PERFECTIONS AND EXCELLENCIES OP
IT is not easy fully to describe the manifold ad- . vantages to be derived from the sacred Scriptures. The most important and interesting events in history, the purest and sublimest precepts in morality, and the most just and striking delineations of character, are found in the books of the Old and New Testament. But the chief excellency of the inspired volume is its bright display of Immanuel. There, his distinguishing titles, his various and important offices, his free abounding grace, and his glorious everlasting kingdom, are amply unfolded in the plainest language, and beautifully exhibited under the most expressive imagery. · Hence we see the propriety and force of his own address to the Jews : “ Search the Scriptures, for in them ye think ye have eternal
could not be withheld without equally despising both the Father and the Son.
We shall just briefly refer to his works. It is said of Jesus Christ, “ By him all things were created; that are in heaven and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones or dominions, principalities or powers; all things were created by him and for him; and he is before all things, and by him all things consist," Col. i, 16, 17. It is also expressly declared, " that all must stand before the judgment seat of Christ, to give an account of the deeds done in the body, whether they be good or evil.” And can such works be performed by any other than the supreme God? Can he who made all things, · upholds all things, and will finally judge the whole world, be himself nothing more than a limited and created being? Who that diligently reads, and candidly examines the Scriptures, can admit such a conclusion?
When Christ was on earth, he was worshipped both by men and angels; and now that he sits with the Father on his throne, he is adored by all the bright hosts of heaven. Rev. v, 12, 13.
Nor do the objections to the Saviour's divinity carry any weight, when the Scripture arguments for it are closely considered. Those passages, which speak of Christ as inferior to the Father,
may be fairly interpreted as relating to his assumed nature, or mediatorial character. Without entering into this subject controversially, I shall briefly mention those perfections and excellencies of Christ which encourage our dependence on him.
1. Christ is possessed of universal knowledge and infinite wisdom. Our views are indeed, at best, contracted and confused; but all things past, present, and future, are manifest in his sight. “The heart,” says the prophet, “is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, who can know it ?" Can a creature penetrate its folds and mazes, or fathom its depths ? No ; but Jesus Christ needs not that any should testify, for he knows what is in man. Thus he .speaks, Rev. ii, 23, “ And all the churches shall know, that I am He which searcheth the reins and the hearts, and I will give unto every one of you according to his works.” It is but little at most, that we can understand of God; but Christ knows the very essence of the Father, in the same manner as the Father knows the Son. See, for proof of this assertion, those remarkable words, Matth. xi, 27.-Wisdom is that which judges of the fitness of things, or chooses the best means to attain the best ends. Shall we then compare the wisdom of Christ with the wisdom of
the most celebrated philosopher It would be like holding up a glimmering taper as a rival to the noon-day sun. Jesus Christ is wisdom itself, not a slender portion derived from it. The greatest prophets and apostles had only a few broken scattered rays : He is the true light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. An inspired writer tells us, " That in Christ are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge,” Col. ii, 3. How full and expressive is this language. Wisdom and knowledge are called treasures on account of their unspeakable value : they are said to be hid, not that they are shut up from us, but rather that they surpass our comprehension; they are all hid in Christ, as the grand and never-failing depository. Besides, we are not only sure that Christ is the fountain of wisdom, but also that he is ready to communicate from his inexhaustible stores to us. Hence, Paul, writing to the Corinthians, 1 Cor. i, 31, says, “ Of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.” How well then is he qualified to teach us, and direct our doubtful steps in the way of life! Happy is the man, who, no longer leaning to his own understanding, entrusts his immortal soul to the unerring guidance of the “only wise God, our
Saviour !” Happy is the believer, who with deep humility and child-like simplicity sits at the feet of Jesus, to drink in divine knowledge and heavenly consolation ! Thrice happy is the favoured Christian, who, sensible how much error and uncertainty there is in the world, turns his eyes wholly to the blessed Immanuel, and cries, “ Lord, to whom can I go but unto thee, thou hast the words of eternal life !”
2. Christ is possessed of unlimited authority and almighty power.
While he was here on earth, diseases vanished at his touch, and devils trembled and fled at his word. The multitude were astonished at his doctrine, and the manifold miracles which accompanied it, Mark i, 27. Well might they in amazement cry, “ What thing is this? for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they obey him.” Besides, he endowed his disciples with the power of working many miracles. When, therefore the question is put by the prophet, “ Who is this that cometh from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah, this, that is glorious in his apparel, travelling in the greatness of his strength ?” It is Christ who answers, “ I that speak in righteousness, mighty to save." How distressing would this thought be to the mind of the Christian ; Perhaps Jesus, though