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deeply we feel, our want of holiness, and the sin that is in us; so that, as has been said by a saint of old,' our very repentance needs to be repented of.' Yet we feel that what is offered to the perfect and holy God must be perfect and holy, or it cannot be accepted by him, for it cannot be worthy of him. Therefore it is, that nothing but Christ can satisfy the need of the soul. He offers himself to us, pure, sinless, having all the perfection of holiness which we know must be, but which cannot be from us ; and he invites us to trust in him, as one whom God his Father has given to take our sins upon himself, to give to us his righteousness, and to appear for us in our stead-not only as one who pleads for us, but as one who has paid the debt we owe ; and this is what is meant when Christ is called our Advocate and our Redeemer.*

Jesus knew that He had all to give that was needful, and therefore He said, “ He that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst;" these words mean, he shall not again be tormented with that unsatisfied longing for something he can depend upon to save him, which is like hunger and thirst to the soul--for in me he will find all he wants.'

Many of those who stood around Jesus, and had seen his most wonderful works, believed not. This He had known from the beginning, and He added :

JOHN vi. 36. But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not.'

It is no light thing to believe,-to be able to do so is the most precious gift of God and all who so believe, are given by God to his Son, and by him are saved.

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Verses 37–40. All that the Father giveth me shall come to me (said the Lord Jesus); and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out. For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.

* 1 John ii. 1, 2. Rom. iii. 24.

And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which He hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life : and I will raise him up at the last day.

How beautiful is the simplicity of the Gospel of Christ ! How different his plan of salvation from the plans of men ! Whether among the men of old times or the men of our present day, it seems to belong to our nature to invent difficulties for ourselves. How shall I come ? says one. If you knew yourself to be in some great danger, if your house was on fire, and men shouted to you that there was a way of escape open before you, would you stay to ask questions ? would you not spring into that way and be safe ?

How can it be that simply seeing that Christ is the Son of God, and believing on him, shall save my soul ? says another. Here is the answer : to see him is to love him, to love him is to seek to please him. Is it possible that this can be otherwise !

. O if we would bring to religion even the same willingness to understand simple truths that we bring to the common things of life, how much better for us would it be! In common life, who questions the power of love? Who does not know and feel, that where we love we desire to please, and that there is an instinct in our hearts that makes us love when we are loved, that makes us seek the presence of the beloved ?

We know and feel all this of human love ; why then do we doubt the power of that love which is of God, compared to which all human love is feeble as the star-light compared with the noon-day sun ? “ Without faith it is impossible to please God;" but we naturally trust where we know we are loved ; why then are we so backward to trust God, who has in his Son given us such a proof of his love? Why so slow to take simply to our comfort the words of Christ, “This is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day."

We may fret our lives away in an endless round of hard duties and works, made for ourselves by ourselves ; but there is no salvation but in the Father's plan, carried out by the Son. We may make ourselves Pharisees ; but He alone can make us Christians.

JOHN vi. 41, 42. The Jews then murmured at him, because He said, I am the bread which came down from heaven. And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know ? how is it then that He saith, I came down from heaven ?

The people were so set upon finding in the Lord Jesus an earthly leader, that even those who followed him had cared or thought little about the history of his birth. Had they inquired, they would have heard, no doubt, that though Mary's son, He was not the son of Joseph. They would have heard how his miraculous birth was made known by angels; and, had they searched the Scriptures, they would have found that all had taken place as the prophets had foretold. Their worldly hopes and wishes, their hard hearts set upon earthly things, made all this impossible to them.

Verses 43-47. Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves. No man can come to me, esccept the Father which hath sent me draw him : and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, And they shall all be taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me. Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.

Let us observe these words; Jesus does not say, "he that believeth on me shall have, but hath already everlasting life ; and the reason is plain, for he that believes on him is in a state of life that shall have no end : belief is the life of the undying soul.

Verses 48-58. I am (said Jesus) that bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven : if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever : and the bread that I will give is my flesh, avhich I will give for the life of the world. The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat ? Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father : so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. This is that bread which came down from heaven : not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead : he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.

How solemnly does our Lord declare, again and again, that He himself is the life of the soul! How solemnly does He again and again assure all who will listen and believe, that He is to the soul what food is to the body! He calls himself

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Bread, He says that whosoever “eateth of this bread sball live for ever :" because it was by his death, a violent death, borne willingly by him for men, that He was to be to them eternal life. He said unto them, that the bread of which He spoke was his flesh, which He would soon "give for the life of the world."

Many even of his disciples could not understand his meaning. It could not have been plain to any one till it was made plain by his death upon the cross ; till the meaning of his words was made more clear by the holy Sacrament of the Communion, in which the Lord Jesus took bread, and calling it his body broken for them; and wine, and calling it his blood shed for them,-bade them eat the one, and drink the other, in remembrance of him. Then men might see and understand how they might eat his flesh and drink his blood, and live for ever. Then might they feel and know how they might so receive the crucified Saviour as to live by him, even as He, the Son, lives by the Father, in a true and abiding union with him. Meanwhile they understood him not, and

John vi. 60—65. Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is an hard saying; who can hear it? When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it. He said unto them, Doth this offend you? What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where He was before? It is the spirit that quickeneth ; the flesh profiteth nothing : the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. But there are some of you that believe not. For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him. Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father.

Do these words of our Lord bring a sickening fear, that perhaps it may not be given unto us to come unto him ? Let the

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