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And shall it indeed be thus ? God forbid ! Acquaint yourselves with Him, as He is a reconciled God in Christ. Cleave to Him, as your portion, and sovereign, and Father in life, and as the guardian of your souls in death. If you give them to Satan in life, will God receive them after death ? If they be not marked with the blood of Christ's cross, and clothed in the garment of Christ's righteousness, will God acknowledge them? If you believe his word, you know that He will not. Must ye not expect Christ to say to you, as Jephtha to the elders of Gilead, when ye shall stand before the judge of quick and dead, at his coming, “Did ye not hate me, and expel me out of my Father's house, and why are ye come now unto me in your distress ? ” O my brethren, suffer thus far what I have said. Be displeased with me, if you will, for thus earnestly pressing salvation upon your hearts, and pointing you to the blood of Christ. If you will not go to it, and have it applied to your souls by faith, so
218 THE LAST VOICE FROM THE CROSS.
you; I will
that He may commend you into God's hand, among the members of his blessed family, I cannot remedy the evil, nor snatch you from the peril, nor avert the judgment. But I will
for plead for you ; because I love you and because I would be clear from the blood of all men.
Once more, bring yourselves in faith, as guilty sinners, to the blood of Christ, and He is now, Himself, not more surely resting on the glory of heaven, than you shall be pardoned, sanctified, adopted, and eventually raised up to join Him in his glory.
WHEN SHE HAD THUS SAID, SHE TURNED HERSELF BACK,
AND SAW JESUS STANDING, AND KNEW NOT THAT IT WAS JESUS. JESUS SAITH UNTO HER, WOMAN, WHY WEEPEST THOU ? WHOM SEEKEST THOU? SHE, SUPPOS. ING HIM TO BE THE GARDENER, SAITH UNTO HIM, SIR, IF THOU HAVE BORNE HIM HENCE, TELL ME WHERE THOU HAST LAID HIM, AND I WILL TAKE HIM AWAY. JESUS SAITH UNTO HER, MARY! SHE TURNED HERSELF, AND SAITH UNTO HIM, RABBONI ; WHICH IS TO SAY, MASTER ! JESUS SAITH UNTO HER, TOUCH ME NOT; FOR I AM NOT YET ASCENDED TO MY FATHER: BUT GO TO MY BRETHREN, AND SAY UNTO THEM, I ASCEND UNTO MY FATHER AND YOUR FATHER, TO MY GOD AND YOUR GOD.
When we are first brought into a darkened room, the objects around us are for some time hidden in the obscurity, and we cannot discern them. After a while, however, the eye becomes accustomed to the circumstances, in which it is placed ; the objects, so indistinct at first, are more fully seen, and we discover beauties, which we could not have imagined to be so near us, when we entered,- beauties which the comparative darkness itself, serves rather to increase. If it had been in my power, duly to have improved the solemn ordinances of the past week, we should have been placed, spiritually, in circumstances like those already mentioned, and so familiar to the experience of our observation. The scene to which we were brought. when we were conducted to the cross, by the ministry of the word, that we might hear the cries uttered by the Son of God, in his last deep agony, was indeed dark and mysterious. The Sun of Righteousness Himself, who gives light and happiness and joy to all the new creation of God's redeemed, was eclipsed ; and therefore, gloom must have been spread over every object and event, connected with the great atoning act of his mediatorial love. Still, dear brethren, the more steadfastly we looked to the cross-the more affectionately we endeavoured to fix our eyes upon Jesus dying there—the more earnestly we aimed to comprehend and apply the purport of his last sayings- and especially, the more largely the Spirit of God might give us those scriptural perceptions of the dying Saviour's love, which no words or efforts of man, could communicate, the more clearly must we have been led to perceive the glories of God in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself, under all the obscurity, which his infinite sorrow and suffering drew around Him; and wherewith it seemed to veil Him. of you, dear friends, hath been taught to feel the Lord, who died for you, more precious from what you heard last week ; if one of you hath better learned the depth of your obligations to redeeming love,