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READER, I HAVE found a sweet savour of Jesus' precious name, free grace, and perfect salvation in these meditations; and therefore I am persuaded it will be doing thee great service to recommend them to thy perusal. They will be profitable to thee, if thou art hungering and thirsting after Jesus and his righteousness; or if thou art one of those happy souls, who know Jesus to be the Lord by the Holy Ghost, and art desiring to grow in the knowledge of his adorable person, and in the love of the Father through him. May the Lord the Spirit witness to thy heart of Jesus whilst thou art reading them, and render them the means of glorifying Jesus in thy life and conversation, that thou mayest learn from every page to trust him more, to hope more in him, and to love him more who is thy ALL; and if thou livest upon him in all, he will be thy heaven upon earth, and thy heaven of heavens in eternal glory. To his tender compassion I commend thee and thine, being thy well-wisher (whoever thou art) in that ever dear Lord.
W. ROMAINE. Lambeth, June 13, 1765.
CHRISTIAN READER, SILVER of human eloquence and gold of acquired literature, have I none; but such as I have I give to thee, plain truth in plain style, in the name of Jesus Christ. He is our one Master. It has been my earnest prayer, that, to his glory, mine eye might be single. One grand point has been my chief aim, namely, to exalt the Lord Jesus, the perfection of his atonement and righteousness, and the glory of his salvation. This I have found the blessed support and joyful triumph of my own soul, while exercised with great disorder and weakness of body, in this work. If the Lord and giver of all grace is pleased to bless this feeble attempt, to the spiritual profit of any of his dear children, to him only all the glory is due.
As love covereth a multitude of faults, and the prayer of faith availeth much, may these, reader, be excited in behalf of the following sheets, and toward him, who desires to esteem it his highest honour and greatest glory on earth, to confess and serve the Lord Christ, though less than the least of all his servants, and thine also for his sake.
W. MASON. (4)
JAN. 1.—Thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord shall name.- Isa. Ixii. 2.
This is predicted of the church of God; which, according to covenant transactions of the glorious Trinity, stands in the nearest and dearest relation to Jesus, her Head. She is here spoken of as a single person, “thou”: she is called Christ's body, Col. i. 24, and “the bride, the Lamb's wife," Rev. xxi. 9, of whom, saith God the Father, “I have loved thee with an ever. lasting love," Jer. xxxi. 3. Yea, saith the Son of God to his Father, of all his beloved members, “Thou hast loved them, as thou hast loved me—and thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world," John xvii. 23, 24. O most comforting truths of God's word ! how ancient is the love of God to his church! That God should love us miserable sinners at all, is amazing; but that he should love us with the very same, everlasting, unchangeable love, wherewith he loves his own beloved Son, this surpasseth all knowledge! This love is the source of all blessings in time; this love secures all happiness in eternity.
The Son of God has manifested his infinite love to his church, by conflicting with and overcoming all the powers of earth and hell for her sake. He most dearly 1 *
purchased her, in a way of strict justice, with his most precious blood. But he finds every one of his ransomed ones branded with this old name of infamy, a sinner; it being near six thousand years since first entailed. By nature we are all old in sin, and dead in sin; but being predestinated unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ, and to be conformed to his image, to the praise of the glory of God's grace, therefore we shall be called by a new name.
This the Lord, the Spirit, effecteth. Being born of the Spirit, and baptized with the Holy Ghost into the faith of Jesus, the Lord calls us by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord shall name. This is it, (verse 12) “The holy people, the redeemed of the Lord-thou shalt be called, sought out.” O the blessedness of being sought out! how precious is he who sought us out! He sought us in the ruins of the fall. He found us in a most miserable condition ; but he calls us by a new name, which signifies new creatures in our living Head, who is the new Man. This he makes us. Then we experience the blessedness of a new state in, and of a new life from, Jesus. He is a new and living way to us. By faith we walk with God, live upon Jesus, feel sweet fellowship with him, enjoy comforting communion from him, and have joyful access to the Father through him. Thus the Lord writes a new name upon his members, " which no man knoweth, saving he who receiveth it," Rev. ii. 17.
Thus, as Luther testifies, “a Christian is a new creature in a new world.” He is a subject of a new king, whose name is Love; and of a new kingdom, wherein dwelleth righteousness. He is possessed of new hopes, new pleasures, new desires, and new joys. Yes, and he finds new fears, new sorrows, new conflicts, yea, and new enemies too. Though that old serpent the devil, who deceiveth the whole world, is cast out of us, he still wageth war against us. What then? every trial we meet with, every temptation we are beset with, shall only glorify the riches of God's love to us, and