Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

and man may water, but it is God who gives the increase, so truly is it that “ The earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof."

Pass over to America, and who is it that produces those magnificent trees ? is it man? No. Man cannot make even a blade of grass; it is God who makes these mighty trees to grow, and to become in time so useful to mankind. From the north you have oil, from the south you receive the fruits of the earth ; the east sends you tea, and the west sends yon sugar ; but all is given by God. So, again, if we look from any point of view, at that which is transferred and trausacted in this busy place six days in the weekwhether they be stocks, funds, or railway shares, or whatever they may be-they are all the gifts of God; for man, of himself, makes nothing, but as the Psalmist affirms, “The earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof."

But then there is a concluding portion of this text. This text is applicable to six days in the week, but God when he made the week gave it seven days, six days for labour, and one day for rest; and therefore, while we accept this motto during the six days in which we transact our business, we must not forget when the seventh day comes, and we congregate here, to open the ark of the Lord, and content ourselves with simply saying, "the earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof." We must not stay at the half of the verse, but go on to the end, and bring before you the rest of the verse. While creation cries out, « The Earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof,” I would say,

II. The Message of Redemption adds, " the world and they that dwell therein."

We are met here on the Lord's day, and we are thankful to believe that those who are interested in this great establishment during six days of the week are by no means opposed to the Word of the Lord being preached here on the seventh day of the week; and therefore it is that I say, that while this motto would do for the six days, the seventhday portion of the verse, " The world is the Lord's, and they that dwell therein," must not be overlooked. The first portion of the verse refers to the Creator, while the second part alludes more particularly to the Redeemer. Yes! we cannot go into heaven, but we can look at that man who when he was upon earth was found rebuking the winds, and they obeyed him. We cannot go into heaven, but we can behold that man who walked npon the sea as, upon dry land. We cannot go into heaven to see God, but we can behold that man sailing in a ship, comfortable and happy in his sleep, waked up by his friends, wbo exclaimed, “ Lord, save us, or we perish.' We can listen to Him rebuking the seas and reducing them to “a great calm.” We cannot go to heaven to understand God, but we can stand by the grave with Mary and Martha and the Jews who surrounded them. We can weep with them and with Jesus, and wonder, as he cried out, " Lazarus, come forth !” and he came forth. Jesus, when on earth, proved that “the earth was the Lord's, the world, and they that dwell therein."

Behold the child which was born in Bethlehem. Follow the star which was seen in the East, and which directed the Magi to the place where the young child was. Follow the young child, and behold Him at the age of twelve patting questions to the doctors and listening to their answers, and then declaring to His father and His mother, “ Wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business.” Follow Him when He became a man, and had not where to lay His head—“He came to His own, and His own received Him not;” behold that man and mark His silence before His accusers. See Him agonizing in the garden, as He crics ont to His Father, “ If it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless not my will but thine be done." See the perspiration (as it were great drops of blood) running from His body; yet He had power to raise the dead, He had power to turn five loaves into snfficient food for five thousand men, besides women and children. Behold Him agonizing in Gethsemane with the weight of sin resting upon Him. God tells us in Isaiah, that He "laid upon Him the iniquities of us all.”. 'All!” Yes ! God be praised ! “By his stripes we are healed.” God tells us that He shall pour out His soul even anto death; and Jesus, the holy, the just, and the good-Jesus, against whom no man could bring a charge Jesus whom no man could convince of sin, came to pour his soul out unto death. He died for man-to redeem bim; and as He approached that death, anticipation was worse than reality. From Gethsemane He goes forth confi

[ocr errors]

dently, yet silently, before Pilate. Pilate "inds no fault in Hiin at all;" but He is taken and crucified between two thieves--a holy and a kind man! If that were now done in this vast city-is the Queen herself had commanded an innocent man to be destroyed in this manner, the whole heart of the nation would rise as one man and protest against it; but the Lord had laid His hands upon one that is mighty to save. The Jews cried out, “Let Him be crucified;" and Jesus silently reechoed the cry, “Let Him be crucified.” The redeemed of the earth would cry out, “Let Him be crucified;” and He was crucified. “The earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof,” as the great Creator; “ The world and they that dwell therein,” are the Lord's as the great Redeemer. Yes, my friends, a more noble, a more Christ-like, a more erangelical text, could not have been chosen, than that which is placed on the front of this building; for it begins one of the most glorious, most redeeming, as well as most spiritual Psalms in the whole collection.

This, then, is the Lord's day, and the Lord's day portion of the text, and now we must pass on to consider that, as Jesus was crucified and died, it is necessary for us to ask why he died? It was the purchase price, pot with silver, nor with gold, nor with things corruptible, but as we are created by the great God; so are we redeemed without price; the precious blood of the Lord Jesus Christ was paid as the price, and were I not to declare this glorious truth, the dead walls themselves declare it-"The earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof: the world, and they that dwell therein.”

So the revealed Word of God tells you, and it directs you to Him. “Ye are not your own, ye are bought with a price"-the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. And let this truth be fixed on your minds and hearts, that ye are redeemed as well as created ; and that if created and redeen.ed, whose are you? If created, ye are created by God, and are His; and if redeemed, ye are redeemed by Jesus, and are His.

Then let me refer to another portion of the Psalm, and ask the question : “Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord ?"

As (1) creation utters its voice, and as (2) redemption utters its voice, so,

III. Salvation has a Message to deliver. We are told that those who ascend the hill of the Lord, aud stand in His holy place, must have clean hands and a pure heart. This is the message of salvation. A man with a renewed heart and holy life is a member of the Church invisible, be is a child of God, he is a member of the body of Christ, and this is the message made known in the Psalm, " They that have clean hands”- this implies repentance aud holy living. A complete change of conduct may be seen in a man, but that is not salvation; it is not the simple abandonment-it is not the man who is not seen to steal, it is the man who does not wish to steal ; it is not the outward appearance, which may be as a "whitened sepulchre, which is inwardly full of dead men's bones”—There must be clean hands and a pure heart; this is the message of salvation. “Marvel not that I said unto thee, ye must be born again.”

Those who are redeemed, those who are thus saved, and have received the blessing of the Lord, and righteousness from the God of their salvation, should remember, however, that their salvation is no more of themselves than their creation and redemption are of themselves. The Psalmist says, “ This is the generation of them that seek thy face, O God of Jacob."

Now let us come to the conclusion or application of the whole : “ Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lifted up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of Glory shall come in." Those without the ark of God, the Lord the Creator stands and asks you to accept it and what it contains. You cannot go to God, but God asks to come to yon. He tells you that ye are not your own ; Jesus tells you that ye are not your own; and as ye are not

"Lift up your heads to Him, O ye gates, and the King of Glory shall come in.” Come in ! Yes; open the door of your heart, and the King of Glory shall come in! Is it a question of doubt ? Do you say, How can I open my heart? I am not able to do so.--You say, “Salvation is of the Lord.” What! have you so little hope in God, and are you so far from Him that you cannot cry out, “God be merciful to me a sinner ?” Remember the secret prayer of Saul is thus recorded in Heaven, " Behold be

your own,

[ocr errors]

ness,

prayeth.” Yes, it is the opening up of the heart--the opening as it were of the mind and of the soul, by faith and prayer, to receive the Lord Jesus. The Spirit's work is to convince us of sin, and of righteousness; yes, the Spirit teaches us what we want, and reveals to us that which cau supply our want. It creates a thirst, and shows us that only Christ can quench it. It excites our hunger, and points us to Jesus, as “the bread of life.” Lift up your heads, O ye gates ; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of Glory shall come in. Who is this King of Glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle.” Yes, it is only the Lord Jesus who can enable us to fight against the devil, “ Who goeth about as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devoor;" it is God alone who can enable you to overcome the world, the flesh, and the devil. You must have“ Christ in you, the hope of Glory !” You must “Girow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ ;” and let the Spirit of Christ dwell in you richly, and then you will find out that repentance towards God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ have been the blessing from the Lord, and righteous

from the God of your Salvation. Do you still inquire, who is this King of lory? I am reminded, my dear friends, of our own good Queen ; when she comes into our city, she has to remain ontside Temple Bar, which is closed for the occasion till she receives, from the hands of the representative of the citizens, the key and the invitation to come in. If the Queen of England shonld come to the door, how loyally would you open it, and how much more readily ought you to open tbe door of yonr hearts to the King of Glory, who seeks admission, especially when he says, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any man hear my voice and open the door, I will come in to him, and sup with him, and he with me.' The word of God represents Him as addressing us as responsible beings, and asking for admission, Jesus having told the people that all power in heaven and earth was given unto Hi.n, said “ Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest;" He said unto His disciples, As all things in heaven and upon earth are committed into my hands, “Go ye into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature, and lo I am with you alway, even vnto the end of the world." Then, “ Lift up your heads, Oye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of Glory shall come

Here, then, is yonr Creator, yonr Redeemer, and your Regenerator, waiting to bless you; pray, therefore, for that Spirit which breaks the hard heart; pray for that godly spirit which receives God's Word, and you will find the entrance of God's Word giveth light, you will find it as "a lamp unto your feet, and as a light unto your path ;” the message is, “ Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved !” * Behold I stand at the door and knock, if any iaan hear my voice, and will open the door, I will come in to him, and sup with him, and he with me.

“ Lift up your heads, O ye gates.'

Then the last clause says, “Who is this King of Glory?" and the answer is, " The Lord of Hosts, He is the King of Glory !" Oh, what a glorious scene, iny fellow citizens, when we meet again before the judgment seat of Christ. When those on the left hand shall depart, and when He says to those ou His right hand, “ Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.” The Lord himself is the Captain of onr salvation ; He has led captivity captive, and He will make us more than conquerors, He will bring us all safely home at last, and then shall we say, “Lift up your heads, O, ye gates ; and be ye lifted up, ye everlasting doors.” Then shall He coine before His Father's throne and say, "Here am I, and those whom Thou hast given me." And now to God the Father, &c. The two last verses of the following hymn were then sung.

(TUNE--Miles' Lane.)
All hail the Great Immanuel's name!

Ye angels, prostrate fall :
Bring forth the royal diadem,
And crown Him Lord of all.

in,',

Crown Him, ye martyrs of your God,

Who from His altar call :
Extol the stem of Jesse's rod,

And crown Him Lord of all.
Let every kindred, every tribe,

Aroand this earthly ball,
To Him all majesty ascribe,

And crown Him Lord of all.

Oh, that with yonder sacred throng,

We at his feet may fall;
There join the everlasting song,

And crown Him Lord of all.

The service was closed with a short prayer and the blessing.

It was announced that these services would be repeated (D.V.) every Sunday afternoon, at half-past five o'clock, until further notice.

452

THE OUTPOURING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.

A Serinon

DELIVERED ON SABRATH MORNING, JUNE 20, 1858, BY THB

[blocks in formation]

"While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the Word.”—Acts x. 44.

The Bible is a book of the Revelation of God. The God after whom the heathen blindly searched, and for whoin reason gropes in darkness, is here plainly revealed to us in the pages of divine authorship, so that he who is willing to understand as much of Godhead as man can know, may here learn it if he be not willingly ignorant and wilfully obstinate. The doctrine of the Trinity is specially taught in Holy Scripture. The word certainly does not occur, but the three divine persons of the One God are frequently and constantly mentioned, and Holy Scripture is exceedingly careful that we should all receive and believe that great truth of the Christian religion, that the Father is God, that the Son is God, that the Spirit is God, and yet there are not three Gods but one God: though they be each of them very God of very God, yet three in one and one in three is the Jehovah whom we worship. You will notice in the works of Creation how carefully the Scriptures assure us that all the three divine persons took their share. “In the beginning Jehovah created the heavens and the earth;" and in another place we are told that God said “Let us make man"—not one person, but all three taking counsel with each other with regard to the making of mankind. We know that the Father hath laid the foundations and fixed those solid beams of light on which the blue arches of the sky are sustained; but we know with equal certainty that Jesus Christ, the eternal Logos, was with the Father in the beginning, and “ without him was not anything made that was made;" moreover we have equal certainty that the Holy Spirit had a hand in Creation, for we are told that “the earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the earth; and the spirit of the Lord moved upon the face of the waters;" and brooding with his dove-like wing, he brought out of the egg of chaos this mighty thing, the fair round world. We have the like proof of the three persons in the Godhead in the matter of Salvation. We know that God the Father gave his Son; we have abundant proof that God the Father chose his people from before the foundations of the world, that he did invent the plan of salvation, and hath always given his free, willing, and joyous consent to the salvation of his people. With regard to the share that the Son had in salvation, that is apparent enough to all. For us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven; he was incarnate in a mortal body; he was crucified, dead, and buried; he descended into hades; the third day he rose again from the dead; he ascended into heaven; he sitteth at the right hand of God, where also

« ZurückWeiter »