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spirit you want; begin with that, and when you have that, all the rest will come right. 'Bethink thee, my hearer; thou mayest varnish and gild thyself, but thou canst never change thyself. Thou mayest moralise, but thou canst never spiritualise thy heart. But just bethink thee. Thou art this morning lost; and just think of this,-thou canst do nothing whatever to save thyself. Let that thought rise in thy soul, and lay thee very low; and when thou goest to God, cry, "O Lord, do what I cannot do; save me, O my God, for thy mercy's sake."
My dear hearers, have I spoken harshly to you, or will ye rather take it in love? Ye who have sinned thus terribly against God, do ye feel it? Well, I have no grace to offer to thee, I have no Christ to offer to thee, but I have Christ to preach to thee. Oh! what shall I say? This:-you are a sinner. “It is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, even the chief." Art thou a sinner? Then he came to save thee. Oh! joyful sound. I am ready to leap in the pulpit for very joy, to have this to preach to thee. I can clap my hands with ecstacy of heart, that I am allowed again to tell thee—“ It is a faithfní saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners." Let me tell you that when he came into this world he was nailed to the cross, and that there he expired in desperate griefs and agony; and there he shrieked, “ My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” There the blood ran from his hands and feet, and because he suffered he is able to forgive. Sinner, dost thou believe that? Thou art black; dost thou believe, in the face of thy blackness, that Christ's blood can make thee white? What sayest thou, sinner? God has convinced thee of thy sin; art thou willing to be saved in God's way this morning? If thou art willing, thou shalt be saved. It is written,-“Whosoever will, let him come." Art thou thirsty this morning? come hither and drink. Art thou hungry? come and eat. Art thou dying? come and live. My Master bids me tell you, all you who feel your sins, that you are forgiven; all you who know your transgressions, he bids me tell you this:-—“I, even I, am he that blotteth out your transgressions, for my name's sake.” Hast thou been an adulterer, hast thou been a whore-monger, a thief, a drunkard, a Sabbath-breaker, a swearer? I find no exception in this proclamation ;—“Whosoever will, let him come." I find no exception in this;-" Him that cometh I will in nowise cast out." Dost thou know thy guilt? then I do not Ask thee what thy guilt is. Though thou wert the vilest creature, again, I tell thee, if thou knowest thy guilt, Christ will forgive thee. Believe it, and thou art saved.
And now will ye go away and forget all this? Some of you have wept this morning. No wonder; the wonder is that we do not all weep, until we find ourselves saved! You will go away to-morrow to your farms and to your merchandize, to your shops, and to your offices; and the impression that may have been produced on you this Sabbath morning will pass away like the morning cloud. My hearers, I would not weep, though you should call me all the names you can think of, but I will weep because you will not weep for yourselves. Sinners, why will ye be damned? Is it a pleasant thing to revolt in the flames of hell? Sirs, what profit is there in your death! What! is it an honorable thing to rebel against God? Is it an honor to stand and be the scorn of God's universe? Dost thou say thou shalt not die; yet thou wilt put it off a little while? Sinner, thou wilt never have a more convenient season; if to-day is inconvenient, to-morrow will be more so. Put it off to-day, wipe away the tears from your eyes, and the day may come when you would give a million worlds for a tear, but you shall not be able to get one. Many a man has had a soft heart; it has passed away, and in after years he has said, “Oh, that I could but shed a tear!" o God! make thy word like a hammer this morning, that it may break the rocky heart in pieces! Ye who know your sins, as God's ambassador, I beseech you,“ be ye reconciled unto God." "Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little." Remember, once lost, ye are lost for ever; but if ye are once saved, ye are certainly sared for ever. “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved,” said Paul of old; Jesus himself hath said “He that believeth and is baptised shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.” I will not finish with a curse. “He that believeth shall be saved.” God give you all an interest in that eternal blessing, for the Lord Jesus' sake!
“THE TRIUMPHANT REAPPEARING OF JESUS CHRIST."
THE REV. J. J. WEST, M.A.,
(Rector of Winchelsea, Sussex),
AT ALL SAINTS CHURCH, SPICER STREET, SPITALFIELDS.
“And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment ; 80 Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many: and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time, without sin unto salvation.-HEB. ix. 27, 28, There is a solemn point contained in the first verse of the text, that passage of God's word, which you have just heard me, my hearers, read. I am not going to dwell, important as it is, upon that portion of the passage, except to take a passing glance of it, and give, it may be, a hint to you, and to myself, upon the stern fact, that it is appointed unto us (to you and to me), once to die, but after this the judgment.”
I was saying to my brother, when I entered his parsonage-house this evening, “How quickly these Tuesday evenings, once a month, come round.” “Yes," said he, “ and 'I believe there are several anxiously expecting these Tuesdays to come. Well, my hearers, how quickly will the sand in our glass of life be all run out-with many of us, there may be but a few there may be but one more dust to run, and to-morrow, you, or I, may be gone. And after death comes the tremendous event of judgment! Now, thus prefacing the subject, and which has been applied to my own mind with power, I shall pass on to the second verse in the text. And as I preach to you on the great subjects which this second verse contains, remember that death and judgment are at hand. Who can tell but that the mere announcement of the fact may have a blessed effect upon you. You Londoners, amidst the hurry and bustle of business, need a word of exhortation, and you may get a hint, perhaps, from a quiet countryman from this pulpit tonight.
Whilst we need admonition on these things in the quiet country hamlet, where, as we go through our parish, we scarcely meet a soul; you, in London, need in a ten-fold greater degree, amidst your passing thousands, and in the hurry of business, and of trade, such a hint as this. May God burn it into your hearts; and if you were not thinking of death and
judgment as you entered the church door just now, may you go out of it contemplating this stern and solemn fact, and as you contemplate death and eternity, may your minds be carried on to Him "mighty to save." And with David, may you be able to say (as he does, I think in Psalm civ), “My meditation of Him shall be sweet, I will be glad in the Lord." I leave the first verse; I take that merely as a preface-a kind of title page to what is coming; for the other verse contains within its short compass a “ Bible in a Bible!” “So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them who look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation."
Now, my hearers, in the context the apostle is giving a description of the rites and ceremonies under the law, showing, prefacing (if I may so speak) that tremendous event, the shedding of that precious blood, which only could save sinners. It was not possible the blood of bulls and goats should take away sins; the blood shed in type, under the law, set forth that wonderful transaction which in after ages was to be accomplished on the cross--when the GOD MAN was to suffer and to die, and by one offering, and that for ever, was to satisfy the justice, and to manifest the mercy and the love of God to the people of His own everlasting choice. These are the great subjects in the context. You can read that at your bed-sides to night, and may it be blest to your souls.
I now come to the great, the vast point—"So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many." Mark the fact; listen to those unmistakeable words, " The sins of many!” the sins of all for whom He died. And here I pause, purposely pause, that you may entirely understand what I preach to you. On the authority of this Scripture, I proclaim Christ was “once offered to bear the sins of many.” This cuts up the fashionable doctrine of universal redemption, a docirine which is not scriptural; the false doctrine, that “God will save all men, if men will, and that men have only to come to God and He will save them.” There is something catching in the sound. I know as well as any man, that if a man comes to God, God will save him. But a sinner never will come, never can come to God, unless God compels him to come: "No man can come to me, except the Father, which hath sent me, draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day." (John vi. 44.)
And again, — But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness unto him; neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.” We can understand that. Now, my hearers, listen. * So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many." I delight in that word “
many; it is antagonistic to the Arminian, Wesleyan, Quakerish, and Popish word " all.” The Arminian does not like such a text as that.-—“So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many."
Listen to it! In every time-state of the church, I believe, that spiritually the church is a “little flock ;” but when the church is assembled hereafter in her moment of triumph; when the church, now militant, becomes then the church triumphant; standing round her conquering Lord—I believe what the Bible tells me, that her people then, her sons and her daughters, then, will be as countless as the sand upon the sea shore. I believe, too, that then there will be only one gigantic and all-seeing eye that will be able to count up the number of the people, whom His own precious blood has saved from the damning curse of sin, and a broken law. I believe that
God's eye alone will be able to view the countless multitudes that no man can number. I may here refer to a verse in Kent's hymns, a verse that I shall never forget, no, not through all eternity; a verse that was blessed to me in a period of soul-exerciseKent says in one of his hymns, speaking of the covenant arrangement of Jehovah
“ Grace had secured in Jesus then,
Millions untold of chosen men.
And the way in which those lines were blest to me was this: That as “millions" were saved, and secured in Jesus, I might have a hope in my own soul that I was one amongst the millions secured in Christ. Many," not all! If there is an Arminian here, let me say to him, in love, but let me tell him in unflinching boldness, that the doctrine which he holds, and which he cannot help holding, till he is brought out by the teaching of sovereign grace, that the doctrine of universal redemption, which he holds, is treason against my King and Master.
“ Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many.”—not all! Now comes the point, are you, am I among that “ many ?” There is only one Lord, one faith, one baprism (that settles the controversy about what a church is—there is only one); one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. And unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.” The church is peculiar. I would impress it on the persons assembled here, that the church is a distinguished people, a purchased people, a people gathered from the east and from the west, from the north and from the south; composed (as our church expresses it) “ of all sorts and conditions of men,” high and low, rich and poor, redeemed by the blood of the everlasting covenant; and it is only those who have been died for, by the one Lord who receive from Him the one faith. There is no schism in the body; there is one faith, one baptism; that is the Baptism (mark me) of the Holy Ghost. “He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire.” One God, who is above all, through all, and in you all. The church is one! We are children of the same family, entitled to the same privileges, heirs of the same everlasting home, we eat the same bread, and drink at the same fountain, the waters of everlasting mercy, life and love. Oh! what a family this to be a member of! Men, I know, pride themselves on aristocratic birth, and talk about their ancient pedigree; but the church of God, what a family is that, the oldest, the only aristocratic family after all; “born of God;" loved by Christ; chosen in Him; picked out from the havoc of the and given to Christ, to be with Him, and to dwell with Him, for ever. And of all these, mark the pedigree, as written in John i. 13, 14, “Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” That gives the death-blow to proud Arminianism. “ And the Word was made Aesh, and dwelt among us (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father), full of grace and truth.” “Who is above all, and through all and in you all.” And mark this! CHRIST is in every newborn man, in every elect man. I may go further than the new birth—I may go to election-Christ was in the church, and the church was in Christ, in the everlasting purpose of God; she was in Christ, and Christ was in her, in purpose, covenant and decree; and for her He was content to die! Liste
“ 'Tis His own, He dearly bought her,
What she cost he only knew ;
Paid in blood her ransom too."
What words are these for a poor uneducated man, formerly a labourer in the dockyard at Plymouth. See how God can teach an uneducated man! how he can teach a man like Kent to proclaim iruth. • What she cost He only knew." What she did cost, no one can ever know, but the living GodMAN who died for her. “He ihat spared not His own Son”—as my brother in the desk was reading these words, “ If God be for us, who can be against us ?” they struck me very forcibly. Is He for you? then defy the devil, then defy self, defy all enemies. "If God be for us, who can be against us?") • He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all;" that is, for all the church, not for all mankind. Paul is addressing the church in Rome; you will see this from the opening verses in this epistle ; " the called of Jesus Christ.” “To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called saints;" not all the inhabitants at Rome, not all the people there.' " He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?”. (Rom. viii. 32.) “All things!" everything-from His “ own elect” He withholds nothing.
I know the trials of the pathway; if I did not, I should never be able to preach, I should be useless in the pulpit; nobody can preach to feed the church, but a tried man. God tries us to make us preach ; we must have trials, in order to ascertain whether or not we are one of the many" of whom my text speaks; and the “many" consist of “the few." In every time-state of the church, God has said, and God will do it, my hearers, He has said it, that with His own Son, he will freely give us all things. that spared not His own Son!”- '-one can hardly control the sound of the tongue in proclaiming such a word as that—" He that spared not His own Son!”. There is love! O! to see by faith that Son die; to see that Son suffer the death of the cross, the agony, -when He cried out, " My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken ME?" And then, to see Him, the holy, sinless Christ, led away like a felon to execution, and to death ; Himself, holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners." “He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all.” Do I succeed in preaching these words into your hearts ? Now mark! “ He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all ; how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things ? "
But to keep to the words of my text. “So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many.” Now the next point is, what He bore. Listen to me! that which Christ bore was, “the sins of many.” Then do you think that a just God will call you to account for your sins, when they have been all atoned for and all cancelled by the death of His Son ? My debt (supposing I am a Christian man) is paid. You men of business will understand me: if you get into difficulties ; if a writ is served against you, you must put in an appearance; but if you get a bondsman, you may defy the sheriff's officer; you may say to him, “ What business have you to detain me? touch me if you dare; do it at your peril: you have no authority now, all you want is the money; my bondsman is responsible; he will pay my debi for me." Now, then, let me carry out my test—“So Christ was once offered to