Numbers 6:22-27

“And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, speak unto Aaron, and unto his sons, saying, on this wise ye shall bless the children of Israel, saying unto them, the Lord bless thee, and keep thee. The Lord make his face to shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee. The Lord lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace. And they shall put my name upon the children of Israel, and i will bless them.”—Numb. vi. 22—27.

Pause, my soul, and in these sweet words behold thine almighty Aaron, even Jesus, in his everlasting priesthood, day by day, thus blessing his people. Observe, the blessing in the name of the Lord Jehovah is thrice pronounced, as if to teach the plurality of Persons in the Godhead. And observe also, after this blessing thrice pronounced, Jehovah, as if to intimate the unity of the divine essence, declares, I will bless them. My soul, mark each. The first may be considered as the personal blessing of God the Father, whose gracious office it is in the work of redemption to bless and keep his people. The second is the peculiar mercy of Jesus, whose face is always upon his people, and his grace their portion. And the third is the work of God the Holy Ghost, when his blessed influences are shed abroad upon the soul, in the light of his divine countenance. And, my soul, observe further, how personally this blessing from the Holy Three in One is, to each individual; it is to thee, even to thee. And, my soul, do not forget nor overlook this vast privilege in the blessing: Aaron, the great high priest of the church, could only pray for the people that these mercies might be upon them; but thy great High Priest, the Lord Jesus, confirms them. His language is, Father, I will. And God having raised up his Son Jesus, hath sent him to bless us. Here then, blessed, precious Jesus, thou great High Priest of my soul! close the day, every day, close the year, close my life, whenever thou shalt be pleased to call me home, in thus blessing me. Lord, put thy name upon me, and upon all thy church and people, and we shall be most blessed indeed, in life, in death, and for evermore. Amen. Hallelujah: Amen.

1 Samuel 7:12

“Then Samuel took a stone, and set it between Mispeh and Shen, and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying, hitherto hath the Lord helped us.”—1 Sam. vii. 12

Did Samuel do this? Was that servant of the Lord, who lived not to see Christ in the flesh, so full of faith in the coming Saviour, and in the experience of Jehovah’s faithfulness in what was past, that he set up his Ebenezer? Surely, my soul, thou wilt blush to be outdone by the prophet, when thou hast not only seen the day of the Son of man completed, but felt his power. Oh my soul, let thine Ebenezer be Jesus! Let the stone thou settest up, be indeed the Rock of Ages. Yes, my soul, set up Jesus indeed, in all places, at all times, upon all occasions. And Oh Lord, do thou by thy blessed Spirit set up thyself in my heart, and enthrone thyself there, and reign and rule there forever. Surely, my soul, Jesus is thine every-day Ebenezer; for he not only hath hitherto helped, but lie doth help, and will help, and be himself thine help, thy God, thy Portion, thy Jesus, for evermore.

Joshua 23:14

“Not one thing hath failed of all the good things which the Lord your God spake concerning you.”—Joshua xxiii. 14.

Say, my soul, in looking back the past year, canst thou set thy seal to this truth? Is there a promise which thy God hath not fulfilled? Is there an instance in which God hath forfeited his word? Canst thou point to the time, or place, in any one trial, or under any one affliction, in which thou hast not found God faithful? Give then the Lord the honour due unto his name. If not one thing hath failed, proclaim his glory, set forth his praise, declare his truth, let the father to the children make known that God is faithful. And Oh let thine heart bear testimony to what must be said of all his Israel, in all ages, “What hath God wrought.”

Deuteronomy 11:12

“The eyes of the Lord thy God are always upon it, from the beginning of the year even unto the end of the year. “—Deut. xi. 12.

Oh for grace, to live always under an abiding sense of this most blessed truth. My soul, never forget it, if possible, but always possess in recollection an abiding apprehension of Jesus’s gracious presence. And do thou, dearest Lord, when thou art coming forth in mercies, give me grace to. be going forth to meet thee with praises: and while thou art bartering thy riches for my poverty, let all thy bounties be doubly sweetened in coming from thine own hand, and being sanctified by thy blessing, that I may receive all to my soul’s joy, and to the praise of the Father’s grace in Christ Jesus. Amen.

Isaiah 54:10

“For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed: but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, saith the Lord, that hath mercy on thee.”—Isaiah liv. 10.

What a rest is here for a poor redeemed sinner to stand firm upon, in time, and to all eternity! Well may lie cry out concerning Jesus, and his great salvation in him, “He is a rock, and his work is perfect.” Yes, yes, thou Lord God of my salvation: thou art my dwelling-place in all generations. My soul, look all around thee, look within thee, look everywhere about thee. Search, behold, examine diligently, what else will or can afford thee any security. And think what a dying world it is in which thou art dwelling, or rather travelling through. What friend, what brother, what child, what relation, can give thee help of soul, or even of body, when thou most shalt need it? Think what a day, a week, an hour, may bring forth! Amidst all these changes, is Jesus thine? Doth he tell thee, “that though mountains depart, and hills be removed, his salvation and the Father’s covenant of peace is the same?” Shout, shout, my soul, and begin the song, which in a dying hour will only swell louder, “Salvation to God and the Lamb!”

2 Timothy 2:8

“Jesus Christ of the seed of David.”—2 Tim. ii. 8.

Sweet thought! Jesus will have regard to both sexes in his incarnation. He will be of the seed of the woman. He will be also truly and properly man. As both the man and woman had sinned, so redemption shall be for both. But in the holy nature, in which as Redeemer he will come, he will partake of none of their sins. The man shall have no hand in his generation. And the womb of the woman shall be but the deposit of that holy thing so called, (Luke i. 35.) by the miraculous conception of the Holy Ghost. So that the body which God the Father prepared him, belonged to both, but was unconnected with either. He must be truly man; for the law had said, “Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy unto the Lord.” He must be a priest; and no woman could minister in that office. He must be a prophet; and no woman could exercise that province, for it is not permitted for a woman to speak in the church. He must be a king; and the kingly office belongeth not to the weaker vessel. But both sexes shall be equally at the same time concerned in the blessed event of his incarnation. The woman is saved in the child-bearing of this Redeemer, and the man brought into favour and reconciliation; “for as by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.” So that, as the apostle strongly and satisfactorily concludes, “there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female, but ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”

John 1:14

"And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us." - John i. 14.

Turn aside, my soul, this day, from every vain and worldly thought, as Moses did at the bush, and behold by faith the accomplishment of what he then saw in type and figure, of this great sight which the Lord hath made known unto thee. The Word, the uncreated Word, even the eternal Son of God, taking upon him the nature of man, and uniting both in one Person, that by the union he might be a suitable Saviour for his people. As God, he was mighty to save, and fully competent to the wonderful act. As man; he was a suitable Saviour, for the right of redemption belonged to him. And as both, he, and he alone, could become a proper Mediator, to reconcile and bring together God and man, which by sin were at variance. This was the glorious news angels posted down from heaven to proclaim. This was the song of heaven, for which they sung "glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will to men." My soul, canst thou join in the song? Yes, if so be thou hast received Christ in those glorious characters; if, as for this divine purpose he was born in our streets, he is born in thy heart also, and formed there the hope of glory. Oh it is a blessed thing to have true scriptural views of the Lord Jesus, and so to receive him, as Jehovah hath sent him forth, the Christ of God. Amen.

Luke 2:8

“Shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.”— Luke ii. 8.

My soul, think what a memorable night was that, which ushered in the wondrous day, the most momentous ever marked in the annals of time, since reckoning of days or years was made. The unconscious shepherds in the fields had no other thought but of their flock. But what a morning did the angels call them to celebrate! Now, my, soul, sit down and take a leisurely survey, of the wonderful story of Jesus’s birth. Mark the several volumes in it; for a night, yea, for a whole eternity must end before the subject of God incarnate can be exhausted in the meditation. Let thy evening thoughts on this, be followed by the night contemplation; and let thy midnight only be broken in upon, by the same call that the heavenly host gave to the shepherds. Arise but to sing as they sang, and to go in quest of Jesus, as they went. God and mall in one person, one Christ; and God in Christ coming for the purposes of salvation, will furnish out an hymn, which, though begun in life, will never end in eternity; “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good-will towards men!”

Psalm 40:7

“Lo, I come.”—Ps. xl. 7.

What a longing had old testament saints for the Lord Jesus’s coming! And what an earnest wish and prayer it is among new testament believers, for Jesus’s coming by the visits of his grace, and the sweet influences of his Holy Spirit, from day to day! My soul, methinks I would realize by faith this day, even this very day, these words of thy Redeemer, as if he were now standing at the door of thine heart, and asking for admission. And shall I not say, under this sweet impression, “Come in, thou blessed of the Lord, wherefore standest thou without?” Oh blessed Jesus, when I consider the many precious instances of thy coming, set up from everlasting in thy goings forth for the salvation of thy chosen, thy anticipation, in thy visits before the season of thy tabernacling in our flesh; thy visits to the patriarchs and prophets; thy manifestation openly to the people; thy secret, sweet, and inexpressibly gracious visits now, and thy promised return in the clouds at the final consummation of all things; Oh Lamb of God, dost thou say, “Lo, I come?” Oh for the earnestness of faith, in all her devout longings, to cry out with the church of old, and say, “Make haste, my Beloved, and come! Oh come quickly, Lord Jesus!”

Ephesians 1:9

“Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure, which he hath purposed in himself.”—Eph. i. 9.

My soul, pause over these volumes of divine truth for they are not as so many simple words, but contain vast volumes indeed, and such as a whole eternity will not afford space to read over and finish. The first is a large one indeed—even the mystery of God’s will namely, the mystery of redemption, originating in the divine mind, before all worlds. And this is not the smallest part of it, that it should be made known in any degree or measure to thee, my soul, a poor creature of a day, and that day, a day of nothing but sin. The second volume in this vast subject is another precious part of the same glorious truth; namely, that this mercy of God in Christ is the sole result of God’s good pleasure. No foresight, no merit, no pretensions of thine, my soul; no, nor the merits of arch-angels, becoming in the least the cause. For though a gracious God hath taken occasion to make a glorious display of the depths of his grace, from the depths of man’s ruin; yet it was not our state, but his good pleasure, which laid the foundation of our recovery by Jesus Christ. And the third volume in this stupendous subject is, that he that planned, executed and finished it. As none but infinite wisdom could purpose, so none but infinite power could accomplish. Pause, my soul, and contemplate the vast mercy! It comes from God in Christ, as the first cause; and reverts back again to God in Christ, as the final end. Hallelujah.

Psalm 69:4

“Then I restored that which I took not away.”—Psalm lxix. 4.

Whose words are these? They can be none but the words of Jesus; for none ever made restoration but he; and none but he could say, I took nothing away. And what was taken away? God’s glory was taken away by sin; and consequently, man’s happiness also. For when Adam sinned, he robbed God of his glory, and robbed himself and all his posterity of God’s image, and with it all happiness. Nay, my soul, thou hast done the same, in every renewed act of disobedience. And in breaking the divine law thou hast justly lost the divine favour. And hath Jesus, all precious Jesus, restored all these? Yes, blessings on his name, he hath! And what renders it ten-fold more gracious, he hath so done it as never to be lost any more. By his finished work of salvation he hath restored to God his glory. And by his obedience and death, as our Surety, he hath restored to man his happiness. The favour of God we lost by sin; Jesus hath restored it, by justifying us in his righteousness. The image of God we lost by rebellion; Jesus hath restored to us this image, in sanctifying us by his holiness. So that every way, and in all things, Jesus hath made up the breach; and the poor sinner who is led by grace to believe in Jesus, stands more complete and secure now; than before the fall. For if Adam had never sinned, nor his children in him, yet, after all, their righteousness before God would have been but the righteousness of creatures. Whereas now, in Jesus, the believer stands accepted and secured in the righteousness of the Creator. Hail, then, thou Almighty Restorer of our fallen nature! In thee, Lord, would my poor soul triumphantly say, “have I righteousness and strength; even to thee shall men come; and all that believe in thee shall never be ashamed nor confounded, world without end.”

1 John 1:7

“The blood of Jesus Christ his Son, cleanseth us from all sin.”—1 John i. 7.

My soul, sit down for a while, by this crimson fountain, and duly ponder over this glorious property of thy Redeemer’s blood. Oh the sovereign efficacy of it! For it not only cleanseth sin, but all sin: not only other’s sins, but our sins: not only the present evil of sin, but the everlasting evil of it: not only now, but forever. It cleanseth from all sin. Pause, my soul. Is there any other laver to wash away sin; can prayers, or tears, or repentance, or ordinances, or communions, or duties, or alms? Oh no. We must say of every thing, and of all things, out of Christ, and void of Christ, as Job did concerning his friends, “Miserable comforters are ye all; physicians of no value.” Here then, my soul, seek thy cleansing, and here only. And while to this fountain thou art daily brought by the Holy Ghost, look up and behold the whole assembly of the redeemed above, who are now standing around the throne, owing their bliss and their cleansing to the same source. Listen to their songs of joy, and catch the notes, to sing even now the same song of rejoicing. “They have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” And therefore it is, and for no other cause, that they are now before the throne, and serve the Lord in his temple day and night.

1 Corinthians 1:9

“God is faithful by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.”—1 Cor. i. 9.

Think, my soul, what a dignity believers in Jesus are called unto, when brought into a nearness of communion with their glorious head, in any exercise of trial or affliction for his sake. God is. faithful in the appointment. How? In that it proves God’s fulfilment of his covenant promises, when Jesus and his members are considered by him as one. God is faithful in manifesting this oneness and fellowship, in making the members conformable to their glorious head, by trials or sufferings. God is faithful in sending the affliction. And God manifests his faithfulness in guiding through it, and supporting under it. The trial itself, be it what it may, is a discovery of the covenant love and faithfulness of Jehovah. Nay, God would not have manifested his faithfulness to a believer without it. What a sweet consoling thought this is to the afflicted exercised followers of the Lamb under their trials! My soul, do thou look at the subject, and learn from it to consider all tribulations in this view; and what a blessedness will pour in upon thee from so doing. Hath the Lord called thee to exercises? Hath the progress of them led thee more to Jesus? Hath the issue of them tended to endear Jesus?—Oh then, proclaim God’s faithfulness. I know, Lord, said one of old under trials, “that thy judgments are right, and that thou in very faithfulness hast afflicted me.” Precious Jesus, what a dignified path is tribulation, when we are enabled to see thy footsteps going before marked with blood.

Ephesians 2:18

“For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.”—Eph. ii. 18.

Who would have thought that so short a verse should contain so much sweetness? And who would have conceived that in it the gracious offices of all the Persons of the Godhead, as they are mercifully exercised towards a poor sinner; are described? Is not the access to a throne of grace the work, the leading of God the Holy Ghost? Surely, he is the Spirit here spoken of. And through whom can a poor sinner have access to the mercy-seat but in him, and by him, and through him, whom the Father heareth always? And of whom should the regenerated, adopted child of God have access, but unto his God and Father in Christ Jesus? Are then all the glorious persons of the Godhead thus revealed, as engaged in every poor sinner’s approach to the heavenly throne? Oh for grace to give to each, and to all, the praise, and glory, and love, due to such transcendent mercy; and in a conscious sense of being interested in this great salvation, to cry out with the apostle: “Now thanks be unto God, who always causeth us to triumph in Christ.”

Revelation 1:17, 18

“Fear not: I have the keys of hell and of death.”—Rev. i. 17, 18.

Is it Jesus, all precious, all lovely, all powerful Jesus, that saith this? He who hath redeemed my soul from hell, mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling? And hath Jesus, my Husband, my Brother, my Redeemer, the keys both of hell and of death? Why then it is impossible for any to open death’s door one moment before that he gives the appointment. And doth he command me to fear not? Oh then, my soul, dismiss all anxiety about thy departure. Thy time is in Jesus’s hands; the keys are hanging at thy Redeemer’s girdle. Never fear, neither to die as thou hast lived, and art living, in a believing frame in Jesus. This is as much suited to a dying time, as it is to a living time; for with this thou mayest go out of the world, as safe as living in it. “To live is Christ, and to die is gain.” God’s covenant love, and God’s covenant promises in Jesus, are the same. They are, both in death and life, fixed and sure. When Jesus therefore comes, when the Master calls for thee, wilt thou feel reluctant? What, reluctant to go to Jesus? Is this thy love, thy kindness to thy friend? Forbid it, dearest Lord! No, my precious, blessed Jesus, open the gate of death to me when thou pleasest, where thou pleasest, and how thou pleasest. Sure I am thou wilt be present, and that is enough for me; and when the ground of all sensible comforts is sinking under me, Oh for a vigorous effort of faith communicated by thee, that I may drop the body, and leap at once into thy arms, with the last cry of faith, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit, for thou hast redeemed me, Oh Lord, thou God of truth.”

Proverbs 11:15

“He that is surety for a stranger shall smart for it: and he that hateth suretyship is sure,”—Prov. xi. 15.

Blessed Jesus, well is it for me that thou didst not hate to become a Surety; for hadst thou so done, and refused the vast undertaking, I must have perished forever. And hadst thou consented to have become a Surety only for friends, and those only that loved thee, still here again I should have been lost: but when thou condescendedst to become Surety for me, Oh Lord, it was not simply for a stranger, but for a rebel, a hater and despiser of thee, and of try great salvation. Oh the love of God that passeth knowledge! And how, blessed Jesus, didst thou indeed smart, and wert crushed and broken, when for my dreadful debt of sin, which surpassed all the angels of light to pay, it pleased the Father to bruise thee, and to put thee to grief. Oh matchless love of a most compassionate Saviour! Me. thinks I still see thee taking my place under the angry eye of God’s broken law. Methinks I see thee striking my worthless name out of the bond of the covenant of the law of works, and putting thine own in. Methinks I still hear thee, like another Judah, who in this was evidently try type, saying to God and the Father, “I will be Surety for him: at my hands thou shalt require him.” Oh Lamb of God! I bless thee as my Surety. I acknowledge thee as my glorious Sponsor. I was a stranger, indeed, and thou hast owned me, and brought me home. I was in debt and insolvent, and thou hast cancelled the whole in the blood of try cross. “I was naked, and thou hast clothed me; sick, and in prison, and thou hast visited, healed me, and brought me out.” I was lost, and thou hast redeemed and saved me. “Oh what shall I render unto the Lord for all the benefits he hath done unto me? Bless the Lord, Oh my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name.”

Romans 5:3

"Knowing that tribulation worketh patience." - Rom. v. 3.

Have former trials been blessed to thee, my soul? Why then depend upon it, this, be it what it may, will be also. The covenant love and faithfulness of God in Christ are both the same now, as they ever were. If the Lord hath hitherto been making all things work together for good, so will he now. Only pause and consider why it must be so. Thy God is the same God as ever is he not? And his love to thee the same, because it is in Jesus; his covenant the same, his promises the same; the blood and righteousness of the Lord Jesus in efficacy the same. Well then, as all the perfections of God are engaged for God's people, certain it is, that no trial to his people can arise which he knew not, nay, which he appointed not, and for which he hath not made a suitable provision. Well then, what trouble of thine can be so great, as to counteract and overcome divine strength? What burden so heavy that Jesus cannot bear? What afflictions so painful that Jesus cannot soften? What grief so scorching as to dry up the streams of God's love? Hear then his words: "In your patience possess ye your souls." My soul, rest in this. Let past experience bring thee present confidence. See that all the fresh springs of patience flow from Jesus. Wait patiently for the Lord, by believing in him; and, depend upon it, thy present tribulation, of what sort or kind so ever it is, will terminate, like every former, in bringing glory to God and comfort to thy soul.

Psalm 106:8

"Nevertheless, he saved them for his name's sake, that he might make his mighty power to be known." - Psalm cvi. 8.

Pause, my soul, over this verse, and observe how thy gracious God took occasion, from the misery of Israel, and even from their unworthiness, to magnify the riches of his grace. Israel had highly sinned: they had provoked the Lord; and their provocations were aggravated, from the spot where they were committed, for it was at the sea, even at the Red Sea, that memorable sea where the Lord had made a path for their deliverance. And wherefore, then, did he save them? Wherefore did not the Lord drown them in the depths of the sea, for their unbelief and hardness of heart? This sweet scripture gives the reason. "He saved them for his name's sake." His name was engaged in covenant promises, and his glory was magnified in making good his engagements, notwithstanding all their undeservings. And what saith this doctrine to thee, my soul? There is a nevertheless with thee also, from God's covenant engagement in Christ and to Christ, thy glorious covenant head, notwithstanding all thy unworthiness and provocations. Though I fail in all, God's covenant fails in none. Though my unbelief breaks out like Israel's, even at the red sea of Christ's blood; yet the efficacy of that blood is still the same, and the Father's engagement to his dear Son, by virtue of it, never can fail. His own love is the standard of his grace, and not my deservings; his name's sake, and not my merit, the rule of his favour towards his people; and all in Jesus. Fold up, then, this blessed scripture, my soul, for thy daily meditation, and learn to bless the freeness of that grace which hath for its object the glory of God's name, and no motive for thy salvation, but God's glory in Christ Jesus.

Revelation 22:2

"The tree of life." - Rev. xxii. 2.

Lead me, O Holy Ghost, by the hand of faith, this morning, into the paradise of God, and cause me to sit down under the tree of life; and for a while, before the world breaks in upon me, enable me to meditate on its beauties, its loveliness, and its fruit. Is it not Jesus which I behold in this charming similitude? Surely Jesus is to me the tree of life, for I have no life but in him! And it is not only he which gave me life at the first, but preserves it, maintains it, and will preserve it forever. He saith himself, "Because I live, ye shall live also." And as he is himself the life of my soul, so everything in him is the promoter of my life. His fruit also is all my sustenance, all I want, all I desire, all I can truly enjoy. .He bears twelve manner of fruits. Yes, for there is in him both fulness and variety: pardon, mercy, and peace, in the blood of his cross; favour with God, affection with men; the Spirit's gifts, graces, influences; comfort in this life, happiness and joy in that which is to come. And every month these fruits abound. Yes, he saith himself, "fruit is better than gold, yea, than fine gold: and my revenue than choice silver." "I will cause them that love me to inherit substance; yea, I will fill all their treasures." Nay, the very leaves of this tree of life are for the healing of the nations. And how healing indeed is Jesus, in his word, his ordinances, his providences, his promises, his dispensations! Neither is this all: the tree of life grows in the midst of the street, and is open in every gospel ordinance; both to Jews and Gentiles, both to bond and free. He is also on either side the river. The church above, though sitting under the full enjoyment of him, doth not keep him wholly to herself. Blessed be his name, he is as much for the glory and happiness of his church here below, on this side the river of death. And is this tree of life, this Jesus, mine? Oh the vast privilege! I bless thee, Oh thou Holy Spirit, for giving me the knowledge of him now by faith: and ere long, I hope to sit down forever in the paradise of God, in the unceasing enjoyment of him, from whence I shall arise no more, but dwell under his branches forever.

Luke 22:17

"Take this and divide it among yourselves." - Luke xxii. 17.

Precious Lord, such was thine unbounded love to thy people that thou gavest all to them! And, dearest Jesus, what didst thou reserve for thyself? And how wisely was thy love manifested! To every one grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ; for the purchase of redemption, in the case of all, cost thee the same. If, indeed, a lamb of thine be weak, or diseased, or torn, or scattered, thou wilt take it to thy bosom, while thou wilt gently lead those that are with young. But every one, and all, shall have thy care; all, as their several wants may be. Here then, Lord, to thy table I would come. Thy death hath confirmed all thy purchased blessings. And in the holy supper I would seek grace, that my right may be confirmed in them. Before God, and angels, and men, I would take the seal of thy gift. In thy blood thou hast signed them: in the word of thy gospel thou hast recorded them: in the ordinances of thy church they are published and brought forth: and by thy Spirit thou givest the tokens and the pledges of them to thy redeemed. Witness for me, then, ye angels of light, that I accept of all in Jesus and in his free gift, the purchase of his blood, and the tokens of his love. Sweeter are they to my mouth than honey and the honeycomb. Blessed Jesus, thy love is better than wine.

Malachi 3:3

"And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver. And he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the Lord an offering in righteousness." - Malachi iii. 3.

My soul, contemplate this gracious office of thy Jesus, and then see, whether he hath as graciously wrought it on thee. Jesus found our whole nature, when he came to save it, wanting refining and purifying indeed. By the operation of his holy word, and by the influences of his blessed spirit, he brings the souls of his people into the furnace of purification. By the fire of troubles, of afflictions, of persecutions, he melts down their stubborn nature there. By the Spirit of judgment, and by the Spirit of burning, he purgeth their dross, taketh away their tin, and forms all his people into vessels of mercy and sanctification; that he may at length present them unto himself, a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle, or any such thing, but that they may be without blame before him in love. And what endears him to his people under this blessed character as their Refiner is this, that all the while the process is going on, Jesus sits by, watches over them, tempers the fire in exact proportion to what it should be, and suffers not the enemy to fan it a jot more than his love and wisdom see it fit to be. Is this the case, my soul, with thee? Are all the fiery trials thou hast gone through, regulated, kept under, and blessed, by thy Jesus, to so much good? Oh my foolish heart, how have I repined in my affliction, because I saw not Jesus's hand in the appointment, nor discerned his love carrying me through it. Blessed Refiner, henceforth give the to see thee. And do thou sit in this most needful office over my soul, that as all true believers are of the royal priesthood, being sons of Levi, and made kings and priests to God and the Father, never may my soul come out of the furnace of thy purification, until that I am enabled, by thy grace, to offer to the Lord an offering in the blood and righteousness of Jesus, whereby alone I can find acceptance with God in grace here, and glory hereafter.

Isaiah 33:21

"But there the glorious Lord will be unto us a place of broad rivers and streams; wherein shall go no galley with oars, neither shall gallant ships pass thereby. " - Isa. xxxiii. 21.

See, my soul, how thy God condescends to represent himself to thee as thy God, under various similitudes, so as to strengthen thy faith and thy confidence in him. He that is thy gracious Lord, is also thy glorious Lord; for he is both a sun and a shield; and he that gives grace, will give glory; one is the earnest of the other. Well, then, this glorious Lord will be there. Where? Why in Jesus, in thy Jesus, God in covenant with him. "He will be unto thee a place of broad rivers and streams." What is that? Why as Jerusalem had no navigable rivers, or seas, to defend her from the approach of enemies all around; so God's people are unprotected by nature, or by art, and lie open to their foes. But what they want in nature; shall be abundantly made up to them in grace. And as they have no art nor contrivance in themselves, God's wisdom and love will provide true counsel for them. Since they have no sea for their frontier, God in covenant love will himself be their sea, their ocean, their bulwark. And what galley or ship shall pass God to attack his people? Surely none can. And observe, my soul, as God himself will be rivers, and broad rivers too, to defend, so will he be streams to provide, and full streams to provide plentifully all possible blessings. Hallelujah. Shout, my soul, as the church of old, and say, "A fountain of gardens, a well of living waters, and streams from Lebanon, is my Beloved."

Isaiah lxiii. 8.

"For he said, surely they are my people, children that will not lie: so he was their Saviour." - Isa. lxiii. 8.

Oh what a tenderness of expression is contained in these words! Jesus not only takes his people into relationship with him, but undertakes for their faithfulness. In the birth of God's everlasting purpose, this was done from everlasting; so that in one and the same moment, we are his people, his children, his brethren, his wife, his redeemed, his fair one, made comely in his comeliness, and in his blood cleansed, and in his righteousness justified before God. And observe, my soul, the grounds of this relationship: surely, he saith, they are my people. Not only as God's workmanship and property, but as his purchase. Not only in first giving them being, but in giving them new being in Christ Jesus. The Lord hath taken them into covenant with him in Christ, and granted them a charter of grace and salvation in Jesus. Sweet and precious thought. God the Father, whose right they are by creation, hath given them to his Son. And Jesus hath made them his, both by his own purchase, and the conquests of his grace therefore he hath an interest in them, and in all that concerns them. Surely, saith Jesus, they are my people, my jewels, my treasure, my hidden one. And observe further, how he speaks for them as well as of them they will not lie. How is this? Why, they are children of the covenant. And because he hath undertaken for them, therefore he was their Saviour. Oh the preciousness of such a Saviour, to every circumstance, to every state, in every way, and upon every occasion in life, in death, in time, and to all eternity. Jesus, thou art indeed a Saviour, thou art truly called Jesus, for thou hast saved, and thou wilt save, thy people from their sins.

Genesis 49:19

"Gad, a troop shall overcome him; but he shall overcome at the last." - Genesis 49:19

Is there nothing, my soul, in this sweet promise, that suits thy case and circumstances? Was not Gad one of the children of Israel? And are not all the seed of Israel interested in the promises? Was the tribe of Gad for a time brought down, and brought under, by a troop of foes? And are not all the seed of Israel oppressed and brought into subjection? Was not that glorious Israelite, the great Captain of our salvation, made perfect through suffering? Think, my soul, what troops of hell assaulted him. But was the issue of the battle with him doubtful? Neither is it now. In his blood and righteousness all the seed of Israel shall be justified and overcome by the blood of the Lamb. What then, though there be troops of lusts within, and legions of foes without? Troops from earth, and troops from hell, may, and will, assault thee; but look unto Jesus. It is said of his people of old, that they had an eye unto him, and were enlightened, and their faces were not ashamed. So now, Jesus undertakes for thee, and for thy faith, He saith, I will be an enemy to thy enemies, and an adversary to thine adversaries. God the Father is looking on: angels are beholding; all heaven is interested. Nay, hadst thou but eyes to see, thou wouldest behold, like the prophet's servant, mountains around, thee, full of horses and chariots of fire, all engaged for thy defense. Shout, then, for the battle is already obtained by Jesus for all his people. Though a troop may overcome the Gadites of the Lord, yet shall they overcome at the last. "Thanks be to God who giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."

John 4:16

"And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us." - 1 John iv. 16.

Who hath known, and believed, in terms equal to the greatness of the mercy itself, the love of God to the poor sinner! God's love must be an infinite love, and consequently the display of it must be infinite also. God, we are told, " Commendeth his love to us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Had God loved and delighted in saints that loved him, this would have been love. Had God taken the holy angels into a nearer acquaintance with him, this would have been love. But when he raised beggars from the dunghill, and took rebels from the prison to sit upon his throne, and at a time when his justice would have been magnified in their destruction; to prefer sinners, haters of God, and despisers of his grace; to bring them into the closest and nearest connection with him, in the person of his dear Son; and all this by such a wonderful plan of mercy, as the incarnation and death of Jesus; who hath ever calculated the extent of such grace? Who hath thoroughly known or considered, or believed, in any degree proportioned to the unspeakableness of the salvation, the love that God hath to us? Oh Lord, add one blessing more. Cause my cold heart to grow warm in the contemplation of it; and let it be my happiness to be daily studying the breadth, and length, and depth, and height, and to know the love of God, which passeth knowledge, that I may be filled with all the fulness of God.

John 14:14

"If ye shall ask anything in my name, I will do it." - John xiv. 14.

Is it so, blessed Jesus, that if I go to the Father in thy precious name; my petitions shall be certainly heard, and answered? Lo, then, I come. I feel my faith and confidence emboldened in this gracious assurance. And as thou knowest, Lord, this day, what is most suited for me, let thy wisdom choose, and let thy love bestow, that very grace and mercy, be it what it may. And let a throne of grace witness for me, that I seek it wholly on Christ's account. I consider it as good as given, from the high love my God and Father bears towards his dear Son, as my Surety and Saviour. And although in the moment that I ask with this boldness of faith, I see and knoll - in myself, that I have nothing to recommend me to thy favour, as in the least meriting that favour, but much, very much, to make me an object in meriting thy displeasure; yet looking up in Jesus, depending upon his blood and righteousness, and wholly asking in his name, and for his righteousness sake only, I am encouraged to hope that I shall not ask in vain. Oh then, Lord, hear for Jesus's sake, and let my petition and prayer be answered, that the Father may be glorified in his Son.

Isaiah 53:10

"It pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief." - Isa. liii. 10.

The depths of wisdom were explored to furnish redemption, and to find a person competent to accomplish it; and when found, the depths of love were broken up, to make it complete. My soul, read over the mysterious volume which the Lord hath in part opened before thee. It cost the Father his thoughts from all eternity, to appoint a plan, by which, consistently with leis holiness and his justice, thou mightest be saved. It cost the Father his Son, his dear Son, his only Son, before that thou couldest be redeemed. Jesus must die ere thou canst live. Pause over the subject as it is here expressed. "It pleased the Father to bruise him." Jesus, who was in himself holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; he, who knew no sin, must be made sin; he who never merited wrath, must be made a curse. Read on; Jesus must die! and by whom? Not by Jews, nor Gentiles only; not simply by high priests and governors among men; but by God the Father. He must bruise him, and put hint to grief; for though Jesus was taken, and by wicked hands crucified and stain, yet all this, we are told, was "by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God." And is there yet another chapter of wonders in this mysterious volume? Yes; what can it be? Namely, that all this was for sinners, for rebels, for enemies; nay, my soul, for thee. Wonder, O heavens, and be astonished, O earth! Had our whole nature been bruised to all eternity in the mortar of divine wrath, for the sin of our nature; what would all this have been to the sufferings, agonies, and death of the Lamb of God? And didst thou die for me, O thou unequalled pattern of love and mercy, and by try stripes is my soul healed? Precious Jesus!

Matthew 28:6

"Come, see the place where the Lord lay." - Matt. xxviii. 6.

Lord, I would desire grace to accept the call, for it is always profitable to have faith in lively exercise: I would pray that my meditation might frequently take wing, and view the memorable sepulchre of my Lord. Did Jesus once lay in the grave? Surely death never had such a prisoner before! But did Jesus lay so low for me? Am I shortly to lay there? Sweet consoling thought! The grave is now softened, and the chambers of death are perfumed with the fragrancy contracted from his holy incorruptible body. But is there not another place where the Lord lay? And doth not the angel invite his people to see him there also? Yes, Jesus lay in the bosom of the Father from all eternity. And doth he not lay there now, and will he not through all eternity? But can I see him there? Yes; - for if by faith I behold Jesus as the Christ, the Sent, the Sealed of the Father; in seeing him, I see the Father also. He saith this himself, John xiv. 9. And again, John xiv. 20. "At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you." Blessed assurance! Jesus is one with the Father, and all his people one with him. And as he is in the bosom of the Father, so are they in his, and there shall dwell for ever and ever. Hallelujah. Amen.

2 Corinthians 8:23

"Whether our brethren be inquired of, they are the messengers of the churches, and the glory of Christ." - 2 Cor. viii. 23.

What a blessed account is here given of the children of God to all inquiries concerning them. See, my soul, whether thy experience corresponds to it, and mark their character. They are not only brethren to one another, but to Christ also; for we are told that he is not ashamed to call them brethren. Precious condescending, Saviour! Moreover, they are the messengers of the churches. What is that? A messenger, in scripture, is called also an angel. And if the brethren of Jesus do know, and can speak of him as his people should, then are they like angels come down from the court of heaven, to relate what they have seen and known, of the King in his beauty, and their hearts glow with a warmth of earnestness to proclaim his glory, and his love to poor sinful creatures here below. Neither is this all. For they are the glory of Christ. Mark this, my soul, and dwell with rapture upon it. A true believer in Jesus is the glory of Jesus. Not only because he gives glory to the Redeemer for his grace; but because Jesus derives glory from his redemption. Not only because the poor sinner hath everlasting happiness from Jesus; but Jesus hath everlasting glory from that poor sinner's salvation. Never lose sight of this, my soul, when thou goest to Jesus. Indeed, indeed, Jesus is glorified in receiving thee, in pardoning thee, in blessing thee, in giving to thee of his fulness. And the Father is glorified in this great salvation by his Son. Oh what encouragement is this to faith; what inducement to come to Jesus! Lord, how ought I to blush when I think how little glory I give to thee in not seeing that thy church and thy people are thy glory, in being saved and redeemed by thee.

John 6:45

"It is written in the prophets, and they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me." - John vi. 45.

Mark, my soul, these precious words of thy Jesus. It was one of the old testament promises, that all God's children should be taught of him. And as this condescension of God, in teaching, implied the Father, so the blessed consequence and effect of it should be, that every one thus taught proved his being a child, and inclined his heart to come to God in Christ as a Father. My soul, art thou come? Art thou looking to, leaning upon, trusting in, walking with, and seeking for Jesus? Is he the Lord thy righteousness, thine only righteousness, thine only hope, thine only confidence? Dost thou, like the apostle, count all things else but dung and dross to win Christ, and to be found in him? Courage then, my soul! These are blessed tokens of thine adoption character. None but God the Father, by his Holy Spirit, could have taught thee these things. None but He, that revealed his Son in the heart of the apostle, could have been thy teacher. Thou hast both heard and learned of the Father, and in proof thereof thou art come to Christ for life and salvation. Fold up then this precious scripture in thy bosom for thy daily use, and examine thine interest in Christ continually, by a mark so sure and infallible. And remember what the Lord Jesus hath said, as a collateral testimony to the same blessed truth: "All that the Father giveth me (saith Jesus) shall come to me: and him that cometh I will in no wise cast out."

Psalm 65:1

"Praise waiteth for thee, Oh God, in Zion." - Psalm lxv. 1.

Is this the language of my heart? Am I indeed waiting until that Jesus be ready to receive my poor praise? Hath God the Holy Ghost prepared my heart? Oh then, hasten to him, my soul, with thy morning offerings, poor as they are; for sure I am, Jesus is waiting to be gracious. God will accept both thee and thy offering in him the Beloved. Go forth to meet him as early and as often as thine heart can wish: depend upon it, thy Redeemer will be beforehand with thee, and is waiting thy coming. Neither thy praise nor thy prayer can outrun his love; for both are the blessed effects of his grace, and of his own quickenings. Precious Jesus, grant me to come as often as I need thee. And, Lord, if thou wilt grant me this blessing, I shall never be from thee, for I need thee every moment.

Romans 13:11

"It is high time to awake out of sleep; for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed." - Rom. xiii. 11.

Solemn consideration! What time is it with thee, my soul? Let me ask, with the prophet, "Watchman, what of the night? The morning cometh, and also the night." Perhaps there may be but a step between me and death. Am I really awakened from the sleep of carnal security? Am I alive from spiritual death? Am I dead to the world, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord? Oh Lord Jesus, impress these solemn enquiries upon my soul yet more and more, since everlasting happiness, or everlasting misery hangs upon the decision. My beating pulse is hastening to fulfill the appointed number. Even while I think of these things the account is increased. Every fleeting breath is one the less to take. Lord, make me wise to remember my latter end!

Song of Solomon 4:6

"Until the day break, and the shadows flee away, I will get me to the mountain of myrrh, and to the hill of frankincense." - Song iv. 6.

Methinks I would have every poor sinner, until the day dawn of awakening grace breaks in upon his soul, get away to the ordinances of God in the mountain of the Lord's house: there lie should live, there wait, until the Lord speaks to his soul. And methinks I would have every poor sinner that is awakened, until the day of glory breaks in with an everlasting light upon him, get away to the gospel mountain, where the odour of Jesus's incense, and the savour of his blood and righteousness, become sweeter than myrrh, and more fragrant than frankincense. Here, Lord, cause me to get away from all surrounding impediments, and to be constantly found waiting, that my soul may drink in the fresh, reviving, renewing streams, until Jesus himself, the morning star, breaks in upon my soul, to lead me home to his everlasting glory, in his bosom forever.

Romans 5:6

"For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly." - Romans 5:6

My soul fold up this sweet and precious scripture, and carry it about with thee in thy bosom, and in thine heart, that it may help thee on at any time, and at all times, when thy strength seems gone, and there is no power left. Was it not when the whole nature of man was without strength, that Christ was given of the Father? And was it not equally so, when Christ came to seek and save that which was lost? And was it not in due time when Christ died for the ungodly; due time in his resurrection, due time in his ascension, "when he ascended up on high, led captivity captive, and received gifts for men, yea, even for the rebellious, that the Lord God might dwell among them?" Go further yet, my soul, as it concerns thyself was it not due time indeed, when Jesus passed by and saw thee in thy loathsome state of sin, cast out to perish, and when no eye pitied thee, that then his eye compassioned thee, and bid thee live? Who more ungodly than thee? Who more weak? Who more undeserving? Did Jesus then look upon thee, call thee, strengthen thee when thou wast without strength, and hath helped thee to this hour? Oh then, trust him now, trust him forever. "His strength is made perfect in thy weakness." And depend upon it, when thou art most weak in thyself, then is the hour to be most strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. He that in due time died for the ungodly, will be thy strength in due time of need.

Amos 9:9

"For lo, I will command, and I will sift the house of Israel among all nations; like as corn is sifted in a sieve; yet shall not the least grain fall upon the earth." - Amos ix. 9.

Blessed promise to my poor soul; sifted, blown about by temptation. Look then to Jesus with it, and plead it under every new sifting time. Corn must be sifted, for it is much covered at times with tares and chaff. And so must the seed - of Jesus, that the precious may be known and separated; "for what is the chaff to the wheat?" saith the Lord. Oh Lord, if it please thee, for thou knowest the necessity of it, sift me, try me, separate me, not only from the ungodly, with whom I am constrained to dwell, but from myself, from my own trifling, vain conversation, from the corruption of indwelling sin in my fallen nature, from the vain thoughts which lodge within me. Yes, precious Jesus; sift all, and everything which is unsuitable to thee, and let the whole fall through the sieve, that thou alone mayest remain with me, for sure I know my God hath said, though his Israel be sifted, yet not the least grain of the true wheat shall be lost.

Ezekiel 47:9

"And it shall come to pass, that everything that liveth, which moveth, whithersoever the rivers shall come, shall live." - Ezek. 47:9

Listen to this promise, my soul, and make it the subject of this morning's meditation, of this day, and every day. See how rich, how extensive it is in the life-promising power. And the river of life in Jesus possesseth all these blessed effects. To every poor sinner, brought into this rich stream, it gives life, spiritual life, eternal life. And who shall describe the length, the breadth, the heights, the depths of it? Not only extending over all the continent of the earth, but from the borders of hell to heaven, and from one eternity to another. And its sovereignty is such that it bears down all before it - washing away sin, and guilt, and misery; diffusing streams of life, and grace, and mercy; opening sources of joy, and peace, and happiness, forever and forever. Oh precious, precious Jesus, make glad my soul with the streams of this river; be thou the fountain of all my happiness, and let all my springs be in thee.

Psalm 89:35

"Once have I sworn by my holiness, that I will not lie unto David." - Psalm 89:35

Wonderful condescension! Was it not enough, that Jehovah gave his Son to poor sinners; gave his word, his promise, that all that believe in him should not perish, but have everlasting life? But, as if consulting the weakness of our faith, confirmed it with an oath; pledged his holiness to Jesus, and to poor sinners in Jesus, for the sure accomplishment of all covenant engagements, in the blood and righteousness of his dear Son. Oh my soul, never, never more call in question the truth of thy gracious God. Say with Job, "Though he slay me; yet will I trust in him." What are afflictions, trials, darkness, poverty? These are in me, and about me, but no obstructions to the efficacy of Jesus's righteousness, or the Father's faithfulness. Read under every one of them the charter of rich sovereign grace; hear what God hath said, what God hath sworn: and believe the record that God hath given of his dear Son: - "Men shall be blessed in him." Jesus shall see the travail of his soul, and be satisfied. Here then rest, my soul. God hath sworn once by his holiness: Jesus hath once died, the Just for the unjust, to bring sinners unto God. Return to thy rest; the Lord hath dealt, my soul, bountifully by thee.

Exodus 23:20- 21

"Behold, I send an angel before thee, to keep thee in the way, and to bring thee into the place which I have prepared. Beware of him, and obey his voice, for my Name is in him." - Exod. xxiii. 20, 21.

Who can this be, my soul, but Jesus? He, and He only, who is the whole of the covenant, is also the Messenger and the Angel of the covenant. Jehovah hath never put his name in any other; neither given his honour to any other. But in Jesus he is eternally well pleased, and hath given all things into his hand. Pause then, my soul, and contemplate this holy, this blessed, this only- begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. I see in Him all the glory, the sovereignty, the wisdom, grace and goodness of the Father, and he is Jehovah's salvation to the ends of the earth. And wilt thou then, my gracious God and Father, send Jesus before me in all my way, to keep me, to guide me, and to bring me in, to behold thy glory in the face of Jesus Christ, and to dwell with thee forever? Oh Lord Jesus! I would desire grace so to beware of thee, so to love thee, so to obey thee, so to adore thee, so to make thee my all in all, my life, my love, my joy, my present, my everlasting hope and portion, that in life and death, in time and to all eternity, Jesus maybe my glory and salvation for ever and ever.

Judges 13:23

"If the Lord were pleased to kill us, he would not have received a burnt- offering and a meat-offering at our hands; neither would he have shewed us all these things." - Judges xiii. 23.

Precious faith this of the wife of Manoah, and sound and conclusive reasoning. My soul, hath the Father, who gave thee Jesus for a Saviour, accepted thee in Jesus? Hath the Father, who sent his dear Son to be the Saviour of the world, accepted Jesus for thy, Saviour? Hath the Holy Ghost shewed thee the glorious things of redemption in his blood, the forgiveness of sins according to the riches of his grace? And hath he given thee to believe in the record that "God hath given eternal life, and that this life is in his Son?" Oh then say, with the wife of Manoah, surely the Lord would never have done all this, neither would be have sheered me all these things, had be not intended my salvation Treasure up, then, these past tokens of favour: consider present evidences of mercy; and say, is not Jesus still precious? Are not my desires after him? And small as you sometimes think your hope, yet would you, my soul, relinquish it for a thousand worlds? Oh then, my soul, hang upon Jesus, cleave to Jesus, hold fast on Jesus. Never would the Lord have shewed me the beauty, glory, fulness, suitableness, and all-sufficiency of Jesus, nor enabled my soul to hold up Jesus in the arms of my faith for acceptance, if the Lord had been pleased to kill me.

Isaiah 55:1

"Come, buy wine and milk, without money, and without price. " - Isa. lv. 1.

Surely, no man can plead poverty as an excuse for not buying, when the things sold are not only without money, but without even the proposals for money; not only without ready money, but without any money. Here is not even a price given. My soul, remember this. The poorer the wretch, the more welcome to this market. But what are the things sold? Both wine and milk. A blessed variety in the gospel feast - wine to cheer, and milk to nourish. Yes, blessed Jesus, thy love is better than wine, and thy salvation more healing than milk: Besides, it comes free, it comes pure, it comes in plenty. And it far, very far, exceeds the strongest wine, and the richest milk. For though wine may remove a temporary heaviness, yet was it never known to raise the dead; but thy love, blessed Jesus, hath raised, and will keep alive forever, sinners dead in trespasses and sins, and preserve the languishing graces of thy saints. Come then, my soul, obey the gospel invitation of this day, and every day; come, buy these precious things without money, and without price. Come, ye poor, needy, perishing, sinners; come, every one of you, and buy, there is enough in Jesus for us all; and depend upon it, not one of you will be sent empty away, if you come empty to be filled, and hungry to be satisfied. This is the only mark and evidence of every real purchaser. If Jesus, with all his blessings, be welcome to your heart, you are welcome to take of his free salvation. Lord, I am come this day, and every day. Now let me hear thy voice; "Eat, O friends; yea, drink abundantly, O beloved."

Isaiah 11:5

"And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins." - Isaiah xi. 5.

Mark these expressions, my soul, concerning thy covenant God in Christ. The Lord condescends by them to represent both his righteousness and faithfulness, as they are engaged to make good the purposes of redemption, in the Father and the Son. Jehovah's righteousness, and Jehovah's faithfulness, are blessed securities for this purpose; for so saith the Holy Ghost. "God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins." Wherefore? Because "Christ is the end of the law for righteousness. to everyone that believeth." And do not overlook the striking figure of the girdle, which is chosen to represent it by; for as a man binds on the girdle round his loins, as a strengthener; so Jehovah takes to himself the righteousness of his dear Son. "Let him take hold," saith Jehovah, "of my strength, to make peace with me, and he shall make peace with me," Isaiah xxvii. 5. This is the girdle of Jehovah, which compasseth him about, and cleaveth to him all around; so that his people, whether they are behind or before, may lay hold of the girdle of his perfections, and hang upon them, and depend upon them, and even when God's providences seem to frown, or the Lord seemeth to have turned his back upon them. Oh for grace and faith both in Jehovah's covenant faithfulness, and Christ's righteousness, thus to trust, and thus to stay; for he is faithful that hath promised.

John 1:14

“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.”—John i. 14.

Turn aside, my soul, this day, from every vain and worldly thought, as Moses did at the bush, and behold by faith the accomplishment of what he then saw in type and figure, of this great sight which the Lord hath made known unto thee. The Word, the uncreated Word, even the eternal Son of God, taking upon him the nature of man, and uniting both in one Person, that by the union he might be a suitable Saviour for his people. As God, he was mighty to save, and fully competent to the wonderful act. As man; he was a suitable Saviour, for the right of redemption belonged to him. And as both, he, and he alone, could become a proper Mediator, to reconcile and bring together God and man, which by sin were at variance. This was the glorious news angels posted down from heaven to proclaim. This was the song of heaven, for which they sung “glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will to men.” My soul, canst thou join in the song? Yes, if so be thou hast received Christ in those glorious characters; if, as for this divine purpose he was born in our streets, he is born in thy heart also, and formed there the hope of glory. Oh it is a blessed thing to have true scriptural views of the Lord Jesus, and so to receive him, as Jehovah hath sent him forth, the Christ of God. Amen.

1 Corinthians 1:29

"Christ the wisdom of God." - l Cor. i. 29.

Think, my soul, what wisdom is contained in that one word, and that one person, Christ. An whole eternity will not be sufficient to read over the immense volume. Wisdom in planning, wisdom in executing, wisdom in completing the great salvation. And what a world of wisdom, in the two natures united in one person-the God-man, the Glory-man, the Wisdom man, Christ Jesus! And Oh what wisdom, in making sin, which strikes at God's sovereignty, the very means of manifesting God's power and love. Such is the wisdom of God in Christ, that sin, which in its nature becomes productive of the greatest dishonour to God, should be rendered subservient to produce the greatest glory. My soul, ponder these things; then ask thyself, is there not a wisdom in this vast subject, as far as it concerns thee, yet more wonderful than all? Yes, for surely the greatest of all mysteries in this wonderful volume, to thy view, is, that thou, even thou, shouldest be made the subject for the exercise of such wisdom, as Christ, the wisdom of God, and the power of God, for thy salvation. And all this even against thy determined resolution to ruin thyself. Well mayest thou join the apostle in his overwhelming song of praise, and cry out, "Oh the depth of the riches, both of the wisdom and goodness of God."

1 Corinthians 15:56- 57

"The strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God which giveth us the victory, through our Lord Jesus Christ." - 1 Cor. xv. 56, 57.

Pause, my soul, over this solemn, but yet sweet verse. "The strength of sin is the law." Doth sin derive strength from the law? Yes, for the motions of sin, which is in our members, gather strength from the precepts in God's holy law, just as pent-up waters, that are increasing from various sources, will swell and rage the more because they are restrained. And this is what the apostle means, when he saith, "Sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence." For the mass of indwelling corruption is stirred up, and excited into action by the law. The Lord, in rich mercy, teaching us by this very process; that so totally corrupt is our nature, that we do not know the whole workings of sin, until, by the holiness of his commandment, we are led to see, and feel a disposition to break it; like the first transgressors in the garden of Eden, who lusted to eat of the forbidden fruit, because it was forbidden, so that the very precepts of God, by the sin of our nature, become the means of giving strength to that sin of our nature. The law of God, in this instance, acts upon the heart, as when the gardener's spade uncovers the surface of the earth, and the worms, which before lay concealed, appear. The worms were there before; but. they did not appear before. In like manner, the law turns up the heart, and then appears the sin which, though there before, lay undiscovered. Is this thy case, my soul? And dost thou still carry, about with thee such a body of sin and death-! Well might Paul call it the mystery of iniquity; and well might Paul, from his deeper knowledge in the anatomy of the heart, cry out so greatly under the burden of it. Oh precious, precious, precious Lamb of God! how little understood, and less regarded, even by those that know somewhat of thee in the riches and greatness of thy salvation, is it considered, in ten thousand instances which pass away in the gulf of forgetfulness over our unthinking minds. Lord, give me to see and feel, yet more and more, that in myself I am virtually all sin. And, Oh Lord, give me to see and feel, yet more and more, that thou, and thou alone, art my righteousness. And let the apostle's hymn of praise be henceforth daily and hourly mine" Thanks be to God which giveth us the victory, through our Lord Jesus Christ"

Proverbs 25:25

"Good news from a far country." - Proverbs 25:25

From a far country, indeed; for it is no less distance than from heaven to earth, and from beings as opposite as holiness and sin could make-even from God to man, from a rich Saviour to poor sinners! And so remote that had not this good news been sent, heaven must have remained at an eternal distance, as an inaccessible region! And what is the good news itself? The angels who were first sent to proclaim it, called it glad tidings of good things, of great joy to all people. And indeed, such glad tidings it contains, as language fails to describe. It is pardon, mercy, and peace to poor rebels. It holds forth joy, happiness, and everlasting felicity to poor sinners, enemies, and the fallen race of men. God revealed; sin atoned; Satan conquered; death destroyed; hell vanquished; heaven opened! And these not all. This good news informs also of the stupendous way by which the blessings are given, and everlasting happiness secured. Jesus, the Son of God, the author, the finisher, the source, cause, sum, substance, beginning, end, and portion of all his people. These, among an infinite and endless volume of mercies, are contained in the good news from a far country: but we must enter upon that country, to which indeed we are invited by the proclamation of the gospel, before that we shall fully know, or even conceive, the thousandth part of what God hath laid up for them that love him. My soul, hast thou heard this good news? Dost thou know the joyful sound? Art thou truly alive to the blessed things contained in it, and anxious to be interested therein? Oh then, meditate upon them; give thyself wholly to them. And while men of the world, from the world are seeking their chief good, and asking one another, what news? do thou turn a deaf ear to every other relation of a dying world, from which thou art dying daily, and let thy meditation be all the day, and let thine eyes prevent the night-watches to dwell upon this good news, and this only, which cometh from a far country.

Revelation 19:13

"And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood." - Revelation 19:13

Oh thou bleeding Lamb of God! didst thou thus appear to thy servant John, to tell him, and the church through him, that thy priesthood and thy sacrifice are of the same everlasting nature and efficacy as thy person and thy finished work - "the same yesterday, and to-day, and forever?" And didst thou thus manifest thyself by way of assuring thy poor needy followers that thou delightest in thine office, and lovest to be employed? Was it not, dearest Jesus, to this end, and as much in effect, as if thou hadst said, see, I wear these priestly garments: behold my vesture still fresh with the blood which I offered in the day of my sacrifice on the cross, for my redeemed, and for whom I still appear in the bloody robe, as a proof of the everlasting efficacy. For whom, but for my people, do I wear this vesture? "My soul, art thou looking now, with an eye of faith, within the veil? Hast thou a blessing to ask at the court of heaven, this day? Fly then to Jesus. Behold him still, as John beheld him, and hear what he saith. Remember, his blood speaks; for so the Holy Ghost declares" - it speaks better things than that of Abel;" for Abel's blood cried for vengeance. Jesus pleads for mercy. And doth it not speak to God for pardon, and from God in covenant promises of pardon? Oh the blessedness to behold Jesus clothed with a vesture dipped in blood, in confirmation that "we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace."

Isaiah 30:19

"Thou shalt weep no more; he will be very gracious unto thee, at the voice of thy cry; when he shall hear it, he will answer thee." - Isaiah 30:19

Listen to this, my soul. Ponder over every precious word in it. Are not all tears dried from thine eyes, when beholding that complete salvation in which thou art interested in Christ Jesus? Believers are commanded to sorrow no more, as others without hope. And doth Jesus indeed wait to be gracious, nay, very gracious? Is it possible to consider that He, who hath all power in heaven and in earth, waits upon a poor worm of the dust, and this in order to be gracious? Come then, my soul, unto the mercy-seat. Do thou wait for him, who thus waits for thee. And as soon as thy Lord hath heard, and answered one prayer, do thou follow it up with another. Remember that he waits to be gracious; and Jesus is glorified, in giving out of his fulness to supply the wants of his people. And what petitions, my soul, hast thou now before the throne? What mercies art thou waiting for? Lord, help me to know my need, and thy fulness to supply. Help me to be forever bartering my poverty for thy riches, and my sins for thy righteousness; that while thou art coming forth to me in mercy, my soul may be going forth to meet thee in prayer; and while Jesus is loading me with benefits, my poor heart may forever be proclaiming his praise.

Song of Solomon 7:13

"At our gates are all manner of pleasant fruits, new and old, which I have laid up for thee, Oh my beloved." - Song of Solomon 7:13

Yes, blessed Jesus! at the gates of ordinances, and the word of thy gospel, all the pleasant and precious fruits of the Spirit, which come in new and in fresh supplies from thee, are indeed laid up. And Oh how sweet and refreshing are they brought home and laid up in my heart by thy divine power, when thou enablest me by faith, and in thy leadings and strength, to go forth and bring them home, and to live upon them, and feed upon them from day to day! And shall I not then, blessed Jesus, by the endearing name of my Beloved, call upon thee to command the north wind and the south wind to blow upon thy garden in my heart and in my soul, that the spices may flow; and that then my Beloved may come into his garden, and eat of his own pleasant fruits which his grace alone planted, and which his Spirit bringeth forth and ripens?

Isaiah 35:7

"And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water." - Isaiah 35:7

Oh how refreshing is this promise to my poor, dry, barren, thirsty soul! Surely every poor sinner, like me, that knows his own leanness and poverty, will feel the blessedness of it; for whether it be in the sapless state of unawakened nature, or whether in a scorched or languishing state from the want of the renewings of grace, nothing can be more refreshing than such a promise. Precious Jesus, do thou revive the languishing frame of thy people; do thou "pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground." Oh what a fulness, blessed Lord, there is in thyself to supply all. Surely thou art, as the church said, "A fountain of gardens, a well of living waters, and streams from Lebanon." Do thou then, Oh Lord, send forth this day, this blessed day, such copious streams from thyself, as may cleanse, revive, comfort, satisfy, and strengthen all thy churches. Lord, cause me to drink of the rivers of thy pleasure; for with thee is the fountain of life.

Ephesians 5:2

"Christ hath given himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God, for a sweet-smelling savour." - Ephesians 5:2

If, when Noah offered by faith his sacrifice at the coming forth from the ark, the Lord smelled a sweet savour in it, because both the ark and sacrifice were a type of his dear Son, how fragrant and acceptable must have been the substance, when Jesus offered himself without spot to God? Behold him by faith, my soul, in that hour, in the full incense of his own merit, the censer of his own offering, and the golden altar of his own nature. And while God, even the everlasting Father, accepts Jesus as thy Surety, in the fragrancy of his offering, wilt thou not by faith so apprehend the sweet influence of his person, work, and righteousness, as to rejoice before God in the sure acceptance of thyself and all thy poor offerings in the Beloved? Oh let a throne of grace be a daily, hourly, testimony for thee, that all thy approaches here are under the incense and intercession of Jesus; and all thine hopes and expectations of glory hereafter, are all founded in him and his finished salvation. Yes, thou Lamb of God! let all witness for me, that thou and thou alone, art the Lord my righteousness, and that I seek salvation in no other; most perfectly assured from thine own Spirit's teaching, that there is no other name under heaven, given among men, whereby we must be saved. Hallelujah.

Isaiah 27:13

"And they shall come which were ready to perish. " - Isaiah 27:13

What a blessed promise is this to a poor sinner, that is conscious of his being in perishing circumstances? My soul, pause over it this morning. Art thou not, if considered out of Christ, in perishing circumstances, by reason of the captivity of sin? Art thou not perishing under the sentence of God's broken law; under the just judgment of God, the alarms of thine own guilty conscience, the accusations of Satan, the fear of death, and the prospect of judgment and eternity? And doth this sweet scripture hold forth a provision for such perishing circumstances? Doth it really say that such shall come; nay, that they shall come, whatever obstructions, either from within or without, shall block up the way? Will the Lord enable them, lead them, help them; nay, constrain them to come, in defiance of all impediments? Oh precious, precious Jesus! may the blessing of him that is ready to perish come upon thee; for thou dost indeed make the widowed heart, and the sorrowful heart, to sing for joy. Blessed be thy name, for that thou hast made me willing in the day of thy power.

Isaiah 11:10

"And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the gentiles seek, and his rest shall be glorious." - Isaiah 11:10

Jesus is both the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and MORNING star; and therefore, is not this the day, the very day, the joyful day, in which he who was set up, as God the Father's ensign from everlasting, for salvation in the council of peace? And was he not brought forth, and set up, and proclaimed as God's salvation to us poor gentiles in the fulness of time, as well as the light of his people Israel? Surely it can have reference to no other. Precious Jesus, I do indeed behold thee as set up from everlasting. Thou wert so exhibited in the council of peace, and thy goings forth were, from everlasting, when thou wentest forth for the salvation of thy people. In the bible thou art the great promise; and the whole of the promises. Thou art the whole of the law and the prophets. Both the old testament dispensation, and the new testament grace, all pointed to thee, and in thee they had their completion. Thou art the Father's ensign of redemption, the signal of war with sin, with Satan, and all the powers of hell and corruption. Lord, to thee do I seek; under thy banner, and in thy strength, would I enjoy a rest which indeed must be glorious. And Oh thou blessed Spirit of all truth! when at any time the enemy cometh in like a flood, do thou lift up thy ensign, even Jesus, as a standard against him.

Hebrews 7:26

"For such an High Priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens." - Hebrews 7:26

What a sweet thought! surely, as a poor sinner, I need an High Priest to act for me. I cannot, I dare not, approach in myself, and with my poor polluted offerings, without one. But he that intercedes for me must be himself holy, free from sin; his sacrifice holy, his obedience holy, and in all points suited to his office and my necessities. Cherish, then, the thought, my soul - He that is thine High Priest is all this, and infinitely more. So holy in himself, that not the shadow of sin was in him. So harmless, that in his mouth was found no guile. So undefiled, that though he took all the sins of his people upon him, yet in himself he was free from all sin. So separate from sinners, that though he took the nature of man, yet wholly underived from man. And so much higher than the heavens, that his own personal holiness infinitely transcended the holiness of angels; for, while they are said to be charged with folly, Jesus is the Holy One in whom the Father declared himself well pleased. Meditate, my soul, on these precious features in thy Jesus, at all times, and upon all occasions; and more especially when thou drawest nigh the throne of grace, in and through this glorious Mediator. And moreover, for thy further comfort. and encouragement to come boldly to the mercy-seat, forget not to recollect the still further blessed thought, that this holiness of Jesus is the righteousness of all his people; for he was made sin, when he knew no sin, that they might be made the righteousness of God in him. And as if this was not enough, Christ glorified not himself to be made thy High Priest, but was called to it, as was Aaron. Go then, my soul, go to the precious, the holy, the harmless, the undefiled High Priest, Christ Jesus, in whom, and in whose righteousness and atoning blood thou mayest always have boldness to draw nigh, to find grace and mercy to help in all time of need.

Daniel 12:2

"And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt." - Daniel 12:2

What a morning will this be! how distinguished from every other! Lord, how often do I now awake with thoughts of earth, and sin, and trifles, and vanity How have I opened mine eyes this morning? - was it, dearest Jesus, with thoughts of thee? In that solemn morning there will be no longer dreams, as now, even in our waking hours - for all childish imaginations, shadows, doubts, and fears, will be done away. Precious, blessed Lord Jesus! cause me morning by morning, while upon earth, to awaken with sweet thoughts of thee. Let the close of night, and the opening of the day, be with thy dear name in my heart, on my thoughts, and on my lips; and in that everlasting morning, after having dropped asleep in Jesus, and in thy arms by faith, may I awake up in thy embraces, and after thy likeness, to be everlastingly and eternally satisfied with thee.

Numbers 23:9

"The people shall dwell alone, and shall not be reckoned among the nations." - Numbers 23:9

Mark, my soul, the character of God's Israel, and remember that they are the same in all ages. Distinguishing mercies are sweet mercies. God's people dwell alone, in the everlasting appointment of the Father, by whom they were set apart, and formed for his glory, and given to his Son. They dwell alone, in being brought into the church of Jesus as the redeemed and purchased by his blood. They dwell alone, under the sweet influences of the Spirit, by whom they are known, distinguished, regenerated, and sealed unto the day of redemption. Thus set apart, thus formed, thus given, thus redeemed, thus purchased, thus sealed, surely they, are not reckoned among the nations, but are supposed to shew forth God's praises, who hath called them out of darkness into his marvelous light. My soul, what sayeth thy experience to these things? Oh how different the state, the circumstances, the new birth, the fellowship, pursuits, way, life, and work of God's people front the world! Blessed Jesus, cause me to dwell alone from the nations around; but let me not dwell a moment without thee; but do thou come with thy Father and the Holy Spirit, according to thy sweet promises, and make constant abode with me.

Luke 14:22

"And yet there is room." - Luke 14:22

Room! where, and for whom? Room in the gospel of salvation, and for poor perishing sinners, in the blood and righteousness of Jesus Christ. Room in the heart of God the Father, in the love, grace, mercy, and peace of God the Son, and in the teachings, influences, and fellowship of God the Holy Ghost. Room in the plentiful provisions of grace, the calls of the gospel, the ministration of the word and ordinances in the house of prayer. "Whosoever will," is the gracious invitation; whosever feels his heart made willing in the day of God's power, "let him come and take of the water of life freely." Lord, is there room for me? Thousands, and tens of thousands have found room through thy grace inclining them to come; and yet the scripture sweetly saith again this day, "And yet there is room." Oh give me grace to see that I am one of the invited, one of the happy number that hath found room; and from experiencing the blessed fulness, riches, grace, suitableness, and all- sufficiency in the blood and righteousness of Jesus for poor sinners, I may proclaim everywhere around that others may find the same; that yet there is room. And Oh Lord! grant, that while yet there is room, multitudes that are ready to perish may come. And then all thy royal guests whom thou bringest to thy banquet, and who find room in all the mercies of Jehovah for redemption here below, will find room in the house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.

John 16:27

"For the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God." - John 16:27

See, my soul, how thy Jesus hath endeared to thee the Father in the assurance of his love. And wilt thou not feel thine whole affections going forth in continual love after him? Was it not thy Father which, from everlasting, gave thee Jesus as thy Saviour, and gave thee to Jesus that he might redeem thee? Was it not from the same precious source that Jesus came as a Saviour, and a great one, to redeem thee and other great sinners? Is it not thy Father that hath adopted thee into his family in Jesus, and given thee the Spirit of adoption, whereby thou criest, Abba, Father? And doth he not accept thee in Jesus, bless thee in Jesus, nourish thee with the body and blood of Jesus, clothe thee with the righteousness of Jesus, and give thee all temporal, spiritual, and, by and by, will give thee all eternal blessings in Christ Jesus! Nay, even his chastisements have nothing in them of wrathful punishment, but fatherly love and mercy in Jesus. Oh my soul, pause, and behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon thee, that thou shouldest be called a child of God. And wilt thou not then from henceforth and forever say unto him in Jesus, - "My Father, thou art the guide of my youth; for thou hast commanded me so to call thee." Jeremiah iii. 19.

Song of Solomon 1:4

"The king hath brought me into his chambers." - Song of Solomon 1:4

Yes, he who is King of nations, King of saints, is my God and King also; for he hath an universal empire, being one with the Father over all, blessed for ever. Amen. To him I bow the knee, and humbly and gratefully desire to put the crown of my salvation on his adorable head. And what hath this Sovereign done for thee, my soul? Oh record his praise; tell it to saints and sinners all around. This great, and glorious, and condescending King, hath not only brought thee out of darkness and the shadow of death, but hath brought thee into his chambers. What chambers? Chambers of sweet communion and fellowship; chambers of love, of grace, of mercy, of redemption, of ordinances, and of all covenant blessings. He hath taught me of his love, and my privileges in him, and so assured me of my everlasting safety in him and his finished salvation, that by and by, when from those outward chambers of grace, he hath accomplished all his blessed purposes concerning me, he will bring me home into his inner chambers of light and glory, from whence I shall go out no more, but dwell in them, and in the presence of God and the Lamb, for ever and ever. Hallelujah.

Matthew 28:5

"For I know that ye seek Jesus which was crucified." - Matthew 28:5

Is it indeed known unto my Lord that I seek him? Doth Jesus know that I desire him more than my necessary food? Ye angels of light that watched over his sepulchre, do ye witness for me that he is more precious to me than gold, yea, than the golden wedge of Ophir. And can I, do I, humbly appeal to him that readeth the heart, and knoweth all things, and say, "Thou knowest, Lord, that I love thee!" Be comforted, then, my soul: he whom thou seekest will soon be found of thee. He is near at hand. He hath never been a wilderness to his people; neither hath he ever said to the praying seed of Jacob, "Seek ye my face in vain." While thou art seeking him, he is looking on thee. And the very desire in thine heart of seeking him, it is Jesus hath kindled. And nothing can be more sure than that he who kindled them in thine heart, did not kindle them in vain. Sweet thought; I bless thee for it, thou gracious Lord.

Zechariah 14:21

"And in that day there shall be no more the Canaanite in the house of the Lord of Hosts." - Zechariah 14:21

Oh precious day of God, when will it arrive? Shall the house of Jesus be indeed delivered from all false pastors, all corrupt worship, and the Lord have turned to the people a pure language, that they may all call upon the name of the Lord, to serve him with one consent? Shall my soul indeed be freed, not only from all the sorrows, pains, evils, and afflictions of sin around me; but what is infinitely better than all, from the very being and indwelling of sin within me? Shall the fountain of corruption, both of original and actual sin, be dried up, so that I shall never think a vain thought, nor speak an idle sinful word anymore? Is there such a day, in which the Canaanite shall be wholly driven out? Oh blessed thought: precious, precious promise! Oh dearest Jesus, to what a blessed state hast thou begotten poor sinners of the earth by thy blood and righteousness! Hasten it, Lord. Cut short thy work, thou that art mighty to save, and take thy willing captive home from myself, and all the remaining Canaanites yet in the land, which are the very tyrants of my soul.

John 14:26

"But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you." - John 14:26

Oh blessed Spirit, to whom I owe such unspeakable mercies, let me, Lord, contemplate thee this day under this gracious, kind, compassionate office of the Comforter. Thou art indeed the Holy Ghost the Comforter. And how mercifully dost thou sympathize with all the followers of Jesus in their various afflictions, both of soul and body. How tenderly dolt thou shew us our sins, and lead to Jesus's blood to wash them away. How sweetly dost thou visit, encourage, strengthen, instruct, lead, and guide, into all truth. And how powerfully at times, by thy restraining grace, dost thou enable us to mortify the deeds of the body, that we may live. Hail, thou holy, blessed, almighty Comforter! Oh let thy visits be continual. Come, Lord, and abide with me, and be with me forever. Manifest that thou art the Sent of the Father, and of the Son, in coming to me in Jesus's name, in teaching me of all the precious things concerning Jesus, and acting as the Remembrancer of Jesus; that in thee, by thy blessed office work, I may know, and live in the sweet enjoyment of fellowship with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ, through the influence of the Holy Ghost, the Comforter.

Psalm 18:28

"For thou wilt light my candle." - Psalm 18:28

Precious consideration! It is the Lord that lighteth the candle of his people. And if the Lord light it, what power can put it out? Cherish, my soul, the faith this thought awakens, amidst all the darkness around thee and in thee. Hath the Lord, indeed, given thee light? Dost thou in his light see light? In the light of God the Father, dost thou behold God the Son, and, by the enlightening of the Holy Ghost, hast thou the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ? Oh the blessedness of such a state of light, and life, and knowledge; how is it possible then any more to be in darkness, when the Lord himself is my everlasting light, and my God my glory? Now consider the reverse of this in creature-enlightening. "How oft," saith Job, "is the candle of the wicked put out!" And how exposed it is to be every moment put out; for it is not of God's kindling. A fleeting of its own oil will do it. What is called a thief in the candle will do it. It may be blown out; it may be snuffed out; or if none of these causes occur, yet of itself it must shortly burn out. "For what is our life but a vapour?" My soul, ponder these things. Hath the Lord - lighted thy candle? Is Jesus thy light, thy life, thy joy, thy sunshine, thy morning star, thy all in all? And hath he risen upon thee, never more to go down? Oh then, though all thou knowest, all thou beholdest now, is but as the faint taper of the night, compared to the glory of that day which shall be revealed, yet take to thyself by faith all the sweet comforts of thy state of grace, and say, it is the Lord that hath lighted my candle. The Lord my God will enlighten all remaining darkness: I shall see thy face in glory, and shortly awake up after thy likeness.

Hebrews 4:9

"There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God." - Hebrews 4:9

Blessed motto for the close of the month, or the day, or year; after being fatigued with the thoughts, and cares, and anxieties of life. My soul, delight thyself in the thought of it, look forward to the speedy enjoyment of it. Like the prophet's vision, it will come; wait for it. No sorrow you have gone through will ever come over again. No persecution already felt shall exactly be again practiced. The same trial shall not be again known, Every day, every hour of the day, we are nearer home. Precious consideration. And Jesus is the rest of his people. Lord, in thee alone I find rest; be thou my hope, and be thou my portion forever.

Deuteronomy 33:25

"Thy shoes shall be iron and brass; and as thy days, so shall thy strength be." - Deuteronomy 33:25

What a thought that is which the word of God furnisheth, in the view of everlasting engagements, that a suitable strength is laid up for every emergency. God's love hath provided adequate supplies to the wants of all his people. What strength of enemies shall be equal to the everlasting strength of God? What shall drain the resources of everlasting love? What shall dry up the streams which flow from an everlasting fountain? Jesus therefore will proportion the back of his people to the burden. His grace shall be sufficient for all: it shall be sufficient for you, it shall be sufficient for me, for everyone, for all. Sweet thought! Oh for grace to keep it always in remembrance!

Psalm 117:20

"He sent his word and healed them." - Psalm 117:20

Of all the subjects to comfort our minds in the recollection of the mercies in Jesus, the authority and name of Jehovah in the appointment comes home with the greatest comfort to the heart. This is faith's warrant - this is faith's confidence. Who sent Jesus; who sent his word; who is it that gives validity and efficacy to salvation? Jehovah. "Beware of him," saith the Lord, "my name is in him." And how then can my soul fail, or any promise in Christ pass unfulfilled, when Jehovah sends and Christ completes the work the Father gave him to do? Blessed Jesus! may I always look to thee under this precious character; and may I hear thee speaking under that solemn, but blessed title, "I am the Lord that healeth thee"

1 Peter 5:7

"Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you." - 1 Peter 5:7

Yes, blessed Jesus, I would cast all upon thee: sins, sorrows, trials, temptations. Thou art the Almighty Burden-bearer of thy people; for the Lord Jehovah hath laid on thee the iniquity of us all. And as thou bearest all our sins, so thou carriest all our sorrows. And dost thou not bear all the persons of thy redeemed? Dost thou not bear all our troubles, all our exercises, all our temptations, trials, difficulties? The government is upon thy shoulder; the care of the churches is all with thee. And shall I not cast all my care upon thee? Shall I be careful for many things, while Jesus saith, "Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee?" Oh for grace to sit loose to all things, and to leave all things with thee. Lord, do thou bear me up when I am falling, support me when weak, uphold me against all mine enemies, carry me safe through a life of grace here - and, finally, bring me home to thy glory, to behold thee, and dwell with thee forever.

Isaiah 41:9

"I have chosen thee, and not cast thee away." - Isaiah 41:9

Is this thy portion, my soul? Hath the Lord thy God indeed chosen thee? Hath he manifested his love to thee in so distinguishing a way? Take comfort, then, in all thine exercises, when seasons of darkness .and discouragement are around; think of God's choice, and venture on God's love. Art thou distressed, exercised, afflicted? Dost thou call on God, and find no answer? Doth the enemy tempt thee to doubt? Doth thine own unbelieving heart misgive thee? Still recollect, Jesus knows all. He chose thee - and he that chose thee knows all thine exercises; nay, he himself hath appointed them. And remember, thou wast not forced upon him. It was his own free choice first made thee his; and his own love will be the security of thy present dependence. Jesus resteth in his love; he hateth putting away. Cast down as thou art, thou art not cast off. Though fallen, he can raise. Though dejected, he can and will comfort. Sweet thought! He will turn. again; he will have compassion upon us, and he will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea. Hallelujah.

Isaiah 57:17-18

"He went on frowardly in the way of his heart; I have seen his ways, and-will heal him." -Isaiah 57:17-18

Pause, my soul, over this sweet scripture; and while thou readest it, wilt thou not cry out with David, in the contemplation of the overwhelming mercy: "And is this the manner of man, Oh Lord God!" 2 Sam. vii. 19. Think, Oh my soul, how it was with thee, when in the days of thy unregeneracy thou wentest on frowardly in the way of thy perverse heart. Who could have stopped thee, had not sovereign grace? And how justly might the Lord have said, I have seen thy ways, and will punish thee; I will give thee over to a reprobate mind, and forsake thee forever! - Oh the riches of grace, when, from my very unworthiness, the Lord took occasion to magnify his love and mercy. Oh Lord Jesus, do thou incline the heart that thou hast healed to live to thy praise, and let the life thou hast saved from destruction, be spent in thy service.

Song of Solomon 1:14

"My beloved is unto me as a cluster of camphire in the vineyards of Engedi." - Song of Solomon 1:14

How full, indeed how infinitely full, abundant, and soul-satisfying is Jesus, in all that concerns life, light, grace, glory! A cluster of all is Christ; whether the copher of medicine to heal, or of sweetness to satisfy, or of riches to enlarge, or salvation to impart. Every way, and in everything that is lovely or desirable, Jesus is a cluster indeed to his people. And whether we meet him in the valley or in the mount, in the plains of Jericho, or in the vineyards of Engedi, neither place nor situation, neither state nor circumstances, make any alteration in our Beloved; he is, he must be, Jesus, and that is always lovely.

Micah 5:7

"And the remnant of Jacob shall be in the midst of many people, as a dew from the Lord, as the showers upon the grass, that tarrieth not for man, nor waiteth for the sons of men." - Micah 5:7

Observe, my soul, the character given of Jacob's seed, and bless the Lord for being included in the number. - For so saith the apostle, "If ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise." Mark then their characters. They are a remnant. But they are God's remnant, being in covenant with God in Christ, and as such, distinguished and separated from the world. "They are a people that dwell alone, and not reckoned among the nations." They are in the midst of many people, but belong to none of them. For though living in the world, they are not of the world, but chosen out of the world. They are, moreover, as a dew from the Lord. Beautiful resemblance! For as the dew is from heaven, so believers in Christ are born from above: not of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. Moreover, they are as showers upon the grass; meaning, that as Jesus is promised to come down as showers upon the mown grass to refresh his people, so his people live in a constant dependence upon Jesus, and receive out of his fulness, while all the earth is dry as stubble around them. Moreover, as the rain waiteth: not for man, but wholly falls from God's appointment, so grace is not dispensed for man's desert, but the Lord's free bounty. Oh precious promise, or rather precious cluster of promises, and all in Jesus.

Exodus 4:12

"Now therefore go, and I will be with thy mouth, and teach thee what thou shalt say." - Exodus 4:12

My soul, pause over this sweet promise which the Lord gave to Moses; for surely the same is in effect said to every minister, every child of God, and every believer. He that made man's mouth, will give everything suitable to the mouth, and proportion everything to the necessity of his people. And do, my soul, remark the comprehensiveness of the promise. Will not He who undertakes to be with the mouth, be also with all the renewed faculties of the soul? Jesus gives the tongue of the learned. Jesus gives grace to the lips, understanding to the heart, eyes to the blind, feet to the lame: the bread shall be given, and the water shall be sure, and the defense shall be the mountains of rocks. Go then, my soul, go wheresoever the Lord leads: for he saith, "Be not afraid, I am with thee, I am thy. God." Learn, my soul; then to eye Jesus in all, and depend upon it, Jesus will bless thee in the use of all. Make his glory thy aim, and thy happiness will be his glory.