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to fill our place, honour the law in our stead, and satisfy justice on our behalf. The Lord Jesus undertook to do this. He therefore received us at his Father's hands, voluntarily engaged to be our surety, and become answerable for our debts. In order to this he assumed our nature, united it to his Divine nature, so that the Divine and human na. tures became one person, and that person became our substitute, and was answerable for us. Having volunteered to save us, he could not, he would not, give up our cause. He therefore obeyed the precepts of the law for us.
He suffered the curse of the law for us. He met all and every one of the demands of justice for us. He not only made it possible for God to save us justly ; but saving us through him, God gets a revenue of glory he had not otherwise had. God, the just God, saves us.
In his wis. dom he devised and drew the plan of salva. tion. In his justice, he fixed and settled the terms of salvation. In his grace, he accepted of a change of persons, Jesus for us ; and a transfer of obligation, so that our sins were placed to the account of Jesus, and his righteousness is imputed to us. In his
he presents salvation to sinners who are miserable, lost, and wretched; that they may be saved gratuitously for the sake of Jesus. Thus justice and grace, wisdom and mercy, unite, harmonise, and shine forth gloriously, in saving sinners. God is just, and yet the justifier of every one that believeth in Jesus. God is just, and yet he saves the unjust, the unholy, and the rebellious. God is just, and yet no coming sinner need be alarmed at his justice, or afraid of his wrath. God, the God-man saves us.
He really took our place, paid our debts, and suffered our desert. He procured our pardon by his own blood; our justification by his own righteousness; and reconciled us to God by his death. He commanded his servants to publish and proclaim among all nations, in every language spoken by men, that he is able to save to the uttermost, and is willing to save all who are willing to be saved by him. He sends his Holy Spirit to attend that word, working faith by it, and bringing sinners to his feet through it. He gives the grace of repentance, and men change their minds, are sorry for their sins, and reform their lives. He gives the grace of faith, and men look to him, trust in him, and receive from him saving grace. He gives the remis. sion of sins, and men enjoy peace with God, reconciliation to God, and are acknowledgedas the sons of God. In a word, he gives a free, full, and everlasting salvation, and all of grace. He will consequently, at last, present the whole church faultless before the presence of his glory, with exceeding joy.
Reader, do you understand God's method of salvation ? Many seem to have very obscure and indefinite views of this great subject. They talk of being saved by Christ, and through Christ, but appear to have no clear and distinct views of the substitution of Christ. They see not that God's justice has received all its demands, and can there. fore make no demand on them, if believing in Jesus. They see not that the law has been fulfilled, and so fulfilled as to be magnified and honoured, and therefore it has no curse to vent on them, no objection to raise to their present justification, or eternal sal. vation. They see not that God's inflexible justice, and every other perfection of his Divine nature, are glorified in their salvation. In consequence of this, they have no settled peace of conscience, no strong confidence in God, no joyful hope, no triumphant anticipations : but they hang between hope
and fear, doubt and faith, gloom and joy. Primitive believers realized that Christ represented them, acted for them, and had carried their cause into the high court of heaven; and they realized too, that Christ was in them, the hope of glory; their realization sprung from faith, and they were exceeding joyful in all their tribulations, they carried about with them the consciousness that their sins were forgiven them, and therefore lived in hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began.
WORDS AND DEEDS.
WORDS and deeds should go together, but they do not always. Some speak well, but they seldom act well. Others act well, but
The latter are greatly to be preferred. However, when a man speaks wisely, and acts consistently it appears best. It is folly to expose people's faults, except with a view of correcting them, and preventing others falling into the same. How
few like to be told of their faults, and how difficult it is to speak to them in the right way. There are some who never know their own features, or recognise their own failings. The portrait may be life-like, but they do not know it, or will not own it.
I knew a deacon of a country church, who was a striking illustration of the fact, that words and deeds do not always go together. He generally prayed in public, if present at the prayer meeting, but who ever expected to hear him say, Amen, until he had given utterance to the words, “ We must be
doing.” Very excellent words these. They plainly point out our duty, and refer to the spiritual wants of the neighbourhood of the world. But who ever saw that deacon rising from his seat, to take the lead in any high and holy enterprize ? Or, whoever, under any circumstances, found him with a heart glowing with sympathy for man, or zeal for the glory of God. Not only so, but he did not like to see others too active. He was for keeping the waggon in the same rut, and travelling at the same pace as his forefathers did, before railroads were in fashion. The articles and discipline of the church, the form and order of the services, the matter and manner of the sermons, should all be the same. Not only was it his opinion, that all changes are not improvements ; but judging from his conduct, he must think that no change could be au improvement. Brother Thomas, let me advice you to drop your favourite sentence, or else carry it out, “ Be up and doing,” or say nothing about it, for people notice it and make their remarks. Not that the remarks of our fellowmen are of much importance, but the Lord also hears it, and expects you to do as you say.
The same worthy, had another favourite saying, which was always employed when an application was made for money, to help another cause, or send the gospel to the heathen. Whoever applied would be sure to be told, · Charity begins at home." And so it did,