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• believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt | and temptation abound. And although these be saved.
may not be public, nor acted on the great theatre And O! let us consider what interest is at of the world, yet in every heart is there a sense stake, even the salvation of the soul. How pre- of its trouble or deliverance, it knows its own cious is the soul! "What is a man profited if he bitterness, or experiences its secret joy. Of this shall gain the whole world and lose his soul; or joy or security the great principle is trust in what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?' Jesus, and it may be profitable to trace it in The soul may be lost, and unless we come to some of its operations. Jesus so it shall. Or the soul may be saved, and What peace does it give to the soul that has if we come to Jesus so it shall. We may neglect been harassed by a sense of sin ! The exercised his salvation, and dying, we shall die;' or we may and awakened sinner only needs to know the embrace him by faith, and living, we shall live for Saviour, and his anxieties are at an end." • Being ever. United with him there shall be no sen- justified by faith, we have peace with God through tence found against us. No sin shall have do- our Lord Jesus Christ.' The eye of faith sees minion over us.
We shall be preserved in life, the Saviour in his fullness, discovers God in him sustained in death, acquitted in the judgment, and casting upon the sinner a benignant look, beholds made blessed throughout eternity. Shall we then him reconciled and reconciling sinners unto himtrifle with this salvation. O! let us examine our self, sees the light of his countenance lifted up, selves whether we be in the faith. And never let and rejoices in him as a father and a friend. It us rest until we are enabled, in faith and hope, to is enough for him that Jesus has lived and died. say, Christ is “all my salvation and all my desire. Every demand of the law be sees met in him.
And now he hears his tender invitation, and thankfully accepts it, 'Come unto me all ye that
labour, and are heavy laden, and I will give you Eighth Day.-EVENING.
rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me, * Blessed are all they that put their trust in him,' find rest unto your souls ; for my yoke is easy,
for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall Psal. i. 12.
and my burden is light.' “Trust' is used in the Old Testament scriptures The same confidence in Christ sustains under as equivalent to faith in the New Testament. the heavy pressure of this life's tribulations. It implies an unreserved confidence in its object. From these the believer is not exempted. As That object is here declared to be the Son, meaning the child of Adam, inheriting his depravity, and Christ, and the confidence of the soul is to be still, in a measure, retaining it, he must expect reposed in him. In the exercise of this confi- sorrow; for man that is born of a woman is of dence all other dependencies are forsaken, the few days and full of trouble. But especially as heart is wholly withdrawn from them, but it is a child of God must he lay his account with afconscious of resting on a sure foundation when it Alictions. They are among the promises that are builds upon Christ, and it neither needs nor de- made to believers, for when they are needful for sires any other security.
correction they shall not be withheld. But the Such trust is declared to be blessed,' and that principle of trust sustains him under them all. in trying times, which are here predicted. The He can enter into the view of the believing heathen should rage, and the people imagine Corinthians, and say, “When we are judged we vain things. The rulers of the earth would be are chastened of the Lord, that we may not be joined together to oppose the progress of the condemned with the world. He is satisfied with gospel; God would rise up in his indignation, the assurance, that all things work together for proclaim the dominion of his Son, extend it upon good to them that love God, to them that are every hand, inflict heavy judgments which would the called according to his purpose. And he is make the earth to tremble, and dash every op- comforted by the exhortation, “My son, despise poser in pieces as a potter's vessel. But in the not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint midst of these convulsions some would be safe, when thou art rebuked of him; for whom the they would be preserved as the apple of the eye, Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every even all they who put their trust in Jesus. son whom he receiveth.'
Times such as these have often been seen upon Should outward calamities arise, either in the the earth, and may be expected again. But this world or in the church, his trust in Jesus does word of consolation never has failed, and never not leave him. He is not indifferent to them, can fail. At all times, indeed, scenes of trouble / but may be deeply moved and affected by them.
He ought to be so, yet he is not to despair. / any heat. For the Lamb which is in the midst Enough for him, The Lord reigneth.' The of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them convulsions of society, as the storms in the unto living fountains of water, and God shall atmosphere, may be the means of its purifica- wipe away all tears from their eyes.' Well may tion. The interests of religion are dearer to his we say, “ Blessed are all they that put their trust Master than they can possibly be to him. He in him.' could hinder what now agitates and distresses, but he is pleased, for purposes known only to himself, to permit it. In his own hand the believer leaves his cause-assured it is safe, well
NINTH DAY.—Morning. knowing that he will bring light out of darkness, and order out of confusion. He will make the “He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall wrath of man to praise him, and the remainder
be satisfied, Isa. liii. 11. of wrath will he restrain.' Christ reigns, there- The sorrow of Christ is called the travail of his fore all shall be well.
soul.' The phrase is borrowed from what is known Even in death his hope does not forsake him. to be the greatest example of human suffering, and He trusts in Christ, and is not disappointed. He to which our Lord has frequently alluded as emcan sweetly sing of Israel's Shepherd, “Yea, blematic of painfulness. It is particularly his though I pass through the valley of the shadow mental anguish that seems intended. For although of death, I will fear no evil, for thou art with his bodily sufferings were great, those of his soul me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.' were greater. He suffered from persecution when Death is the hour of satan's triumph, and a child, and was obliged to be concealed among therefore is it commonly the chosen hour when strangers. He endured great privations, so as to Jesus is pleased to glorify himself in his over- be led to say “foxes have holes, and the birds of throw. “By death he conquered him that had the air have nests, but the Son of man hath not the power of death, and in death he makes his where to lay his head.' And at the time of his people partakers of his victory. In much sub-arrest, and trial, and death, many and grievous mission he enables them to say, “Father, thy tortures were inflicted upon his person. But will be done;' or in confidence to cry, 'I know these seem to be comparatively overlooked, and whom I have believed, and am persuaded he is we are directed to his internal anguish as answerable to keep that which I have committed to ing to the travail of his soul. There are many him against that day;' or it may be that he ele- periods of his history in which this was pointedly vates them to the spirit of a holy triumph, and apparent. they sing, death! where is thy sting? 0 Such was the hour, when in full prospect of grave! where is thy victory? The sting of death his agony and death, he said, “Now is my soul is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But troubled, and what shall I say? Father, save me thanks be unto God who giveth us the victory from this hour. But for this cause came I unto through our Lord Jesus Christ.'
this hour.' The prospect of suffering is perhaps In eternity the principle of trust is consum- equal to the reality. Of this distress we are hapmated in both its nature and enjoyment. Faith pily free, by our ignorance of futurity. But becomes sight, and hope, fruition. The song of Christ foresaw what he was to suffer. We do victory is sung, Unto him that loved us, and not wonder if the tradition be correct, which says washed us from our sins in his own blood, and he was never known to smile. What a load must hath made us kings and priests unto God and his have rested on his spirit! And there were times Father, to him be glory and dominion for ever when this was peculiarly oppressive. He had and ever. He becomes one of the holy, happy vivid apprehensions of his coming sorrow, and this throng so beautifully described in answer to the appears to have been one of those afflictive seasons. elder's question, “Who are these, and whence Of the same kind was his temptation in the came they? These are they that have come out wilderness. Satan cast out his vilest poison, and of great tribulation, and have washed their robes sought to pollute his soul. The temptations were and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. all mental—distrust, presumption, and pride. Therefore are they before the rone of God, and There was a conflict of his soul with the great serve him day and night in his temple, and he enemy of himself and of his people. Some of his that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them. followers have had bitter experience of “the depths They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any of Satan,' but they have endured little in commore, neither shall the sun light on them, nor I parison with their Master.
It is only on this principle we can understand in their present struggles, and will detain them our Lord's agony in the garden. At this time here no longer than is necessary for his purposes there was no violence done to his person, yet his and their own good. His prayer is, 'Father, I suffering seems to have been as acute as any he will that they also whom thou hast given me be
He said, “My soul is exceeding with me where I am, that they may behold my sorrowful, even unto death. And thrice did he glory.' Daily and hourly are they arriving there. fall upon his face and cry, 'O my Father, if it be And as each is ushered in, heaven bursts with possible, let this cup pass from me. We cannot new songs of praise and victory. And the bosom explain his exercises on any other ground than of the Redeemer heaves with growing satisfaction. that he gave his 'soul an offering for sin.' Being Let us anticipate this hour and be able to say, 'I in an agony he prayed more earnestly, and his shall be satisfied when I awake with thy likeness. sweat was, as it were, great drops of blood falling He shall be satisfied still more, when he shall down to the ground. It must have been the have gathered all his people home. “He shall wrath of God, which his soul then endured, that send out his angels with a great trumpet, and so drank up his spirit.
they shall gather his elect from the four winds of And so upon the cross. The height of his an- heaven.' He shall cause them to sit down in the guish was when he cried, “My God, my God, why kingdom of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and they hast thou forsaken me.' The nails that pierced shall go no more out. Not one of all his redeemed his hands and feet, the crown of thorns that was family shall be left, and he shall rejoice over them placed on his head, the reed that smote him, all with exceeding joy. O! shall we be there? these were painful, but beyond them all was the He shall be satisfied when he shall contemplate withdrawal of his Father's countenance, while he the great and numerous purposes that have been hung a sacrifice for sin! This completed the tra- answered by his mediation. He shall restore all vail of his soul.
things.' His voice shall be heard, 'behold I make 0! what must sin be that so agonized the Son all things new. He shall command, and the of God! What the love of God that gave up his earth, polluted by sin, shall be burned up,
while Son to endure such sorrow! What the spirit of a new heavens and a new earth' shall rise out of Jesus, who voluntarily submitted to all this for the ruing. O! where shall we then be, and what man's redemption! And what ought to be our shall be our destiny? humiliation, and gratitude, and sense of duty and He shall be satisfied while, as the exalted Saobligation when we thus behold the travail of the viour of the church, he receives the praises of Saviour's soul.
eternity. I beheld, and I heard the voice of But this is past. As his anguish was bitter, many angels round about the throne, and the bis joy is proportionably great. It is described beasts and the elders; and the number of them in terms expressive of perfection: he shall be was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousatisfied. He is satisfied now, and shall be so sands of thousands: saying with a loud voice, more and more, as he sees the fruit of his labour Worthy is the Lamb that was slain, to receive brought to consummation.
power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and He is satisfied in the retrospect of what he has honour, and glory, and blessing. And every done. As when God surveyed the work of his creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and hands, at the conclusion of the creation, and pro- under the earth, and such as are in the sea,
heard nounced it good, so Christ can look back upon I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and redemption and echo his own dying cry, 'It is power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, finished. In it all he sees no imperfection. Re- and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.' demption is complete. Let us rest in it too.
He is satisfied, while he sees the work of salvation carried forward in the hearts and lives of men, by the operation of his own Holy Spirit.
Ninth Day.-EVENING. He convinces men of sin, and righteousness, and judgment. He keeps his saints by his own
“The Lamb which is in the midst of the throne mighty power. He is ripening their souls for
shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living glory. And Jesus joyously awaits their arrival.
fountains of waters; and God shall wipe away Let us not be satisfied, unless the work of salva- all tears from their eyes,' Rev. vii. 7. tion is begun and carried on within us.
The martyręd saints of God are here specially He is satisfied as he sees his sons and daughters intended. The multitude of the redeemed are brought safely home to glory. He sympathizes described at ver. 9, 10. Among these some appeared peculiarly distinguished, and the elder in-saints; who would not fear thee and glorify thy quires, 'what are these ? They are represented name?' As the God of providence they admire as those who have particularly borne tribulation, and adore his ways, acknowledging them to be and the description so accords with that given of great and marvellous; but as King of saints, they the martyrs in the preceding chapter, ver. 9— bow in lowliest reverence, and own them to be 11, that we doubt not they are the characters just and true. Thus they follow the Lamb specially designed. Still the account of their wheresoever he goeth, drinking in knowledge blessedness applies to others also. Although in from his instructions; and as they learn more and degree their happiness may be exalted, in kind it more of God, rising in their rapturous praises, and is the same with that of all the saints of God; so making the mansions of glory to resound with that the representation now before us may be their songs. understood of the redeemed universally.
He satisfies them, 'leading them to living founThey are in the presence of Christ, who is de- tains of waters. What a heaping up of figures, to scribed as a 'Lamb in the midst of the throne.' convey some faint idea of the rich provisions of The double figure is common, and it is designed the upper sanctuary! Water—fountains of water to hold forth the Saviour in his glory, under the fountains of living water. Water is employed most endearing character, as a Lamb, and at the to convey the idea of luxurious enjoyment, for same time as clothed with supreme dominion, so what a blessing is it esteemed by those who that he is a Lamb in the midst of the throne. dwell beneath the scorching influence of a burnThe very same are the ideas expressed in another ing sun. It is a favourite emblem in the scrippart of this book, only that the imagery is a little tures, and with good reason, for it was well undermore full and complete. 'I beheld, and lo, in stood by those to whom it was then addressed. the midst of the throne, and of the four beasts, And here it is carried even into the description and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb, as of the joys of heaven, to impart some idea of the it had been slain, having seven horns and seven refreshment there provided for the soul. But it eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent is not water merely, but ‘fountains of water.' forth into all the earth,' Rev. v. 6. 'A Lamb,' There is no limit to the enjoyments of heaven. meek and gentle. “A Lamb in the midst of the Unlike those of earth they are never spent. On throne,' clothed with authority and power. 'A the contrary they are still increasing. God is Lamb on the throne, having seven eyes and seven better and better known, and more and more horns'—the emblems of knowledge and power. enjoyed. The glories of redemption are becomOnce he endured affliction, and as 'a sheep be- ing more and more endearing. The fountain of fore her shearers is dumb, so he opened not his their blessing is exhaustless. To complete the
But now he is exalted to honour. He description, they are 'fountains of living water.' has passed from the cross to the crown. Yea, They proceed from the throne of God and the because he was humbled in the character of Lamb. They are living themselves, and they Mediator, now he is exalted. In the presence impart life to all who partake of them. As they of that great and gracious Being do the redeemed quaff the sacred draughts of heavenly love and now stand. They are admitted to the most inti- consolation, they grow increasingly vigorous in mate and endeared fellowship with their once the service of their God. They rest not day nor crucified but now exalted Lord. He still bears night. They have life, and are continually made to them the relation of their Shepherd, and as to have it more abundantly, while the Lamb such he is here represented to guide, satisfy, and leads them to the fountains of living waters. cherish them.
Finally, the Lamb cherishes and comforts He feeds them with knowledge. It is of their them. "God shall wipe away all tears from their abode the prophet speaks, saying, 'the city had eyes. And the Lamb is God. The terms are no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine used promiscuously. In no part of scripture are in it ; for the glory of God did lighten it, and the the views of Christ more exalted than in this Lamb is the light thereof. His presence is book of the Revelation. And the prophet deenough. He makes all mysteries plain. The scribes him as he saw him in heaven. As God, dark providences of earth are now fully unfolded. the Lamb dries up the tears of the redeemed. Much that once distressed them is now made to Many did they shed on earth. Over their own minister to their joy. And they can heartily join sins. Over the sins of others. Over their own in the song of Moses and of the Lamb, “Great and others' calamities. But now sorrow and and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Al- sighing are fled away for ever. There is no mighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of more sin, therefore no more curse, and no more
sorrow. They now rejoice in their former sor- leading captivity captive. And when revealed rows. Their tears were carefully put into the to the prophet who was favoured with visions of bottle of the Lord, and now their joys are pro- his ascended glory, he beheld him “having on his portioned to their bitterness and number. vesture and on his thigh a name written, King of
Happy, happy world! Are we prepared for kings and Lord of lords.' its exercises and joys? O! let us not deceive The description of kingly authority, in the pasourselves. There shall in no wise enter into it sage before us, is as complete as language could any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever work-render it. 'I' Jehovah—have set him' eth abomination, or maketh a lie, but they which firmly and unchangeably—my King'-mine own are written in the Lamb's book of life.'
chosen and anointed One— upon my holy hill of Now let us hear the heavenly exhortation, Zion'--supreme over my beloved people—all the "Be
ye ready.' Now let us 'prepare to meet our interests of Zion, which is the church, being comGod.' Are we ready? The time is short. mitted to his hands. In language, justly ap*Now is the accepted time, now is the day of proved and familiar to our ear, Christ executeth salvation.' Let us not defer till to-morrow. the office of a king in subduing us to himself, in Death determines our eternal destiny. As the tree ruling and defending us, and in restraining and falls so it lies. And once having entered on the conquering all his and our enemies. What an eternal world, the unchanging sentence is pro- office! Subduing, ruling, defending, restraining, nounced, he that is unjust let him be unjust conquering. still; and he which is filthy let him be filthy Subduing. He subdues his people to himstill; and he that is righteous let him be righte- self. Like all other men they are born estranged ous still; and he that his holy let him be holy from him, and their hearts are enmity against still.
him. They soon discover dispositions of bitter hatred, and fall in with the company of his betrayers and murderers. But he has power over
the human heart. He made it at the first pure TENTH DAY.—MORNING.
and holy, and now that it has become corrupt,
he can create it anew. He comes in the power • Yet have I set my King upon my holy hill of of his Spirit and touches their hearts. He reveals Zion,' Psal. ii. 6.
himself to them as their almighty Saviour. He ‘Yet'—although at one time nothing seemed discovers to them what he has done for their more unlikely. For this is he who was cruci- redemption. They are made ashamed of their fied as a malefactor, who, when he said, “ Ye rebellion, lay down their arms which they had shall see the Son of man sitting on the right lifted up against him, adore his mercy, praise his hand of power, and coming in the clouds of name, love him supremely, and devote themheaven,
' caused the high priest to rend his selves to his service. Thenceforth they are subclothes,' and cry, 'He hath spoken blasphemy,' dued to his will. while all the people shouted, “He is guilty of Having subdued them, he continues to rule death
over them. He does so by his word-putting it *Yet—in spite of all the opposition that was into their hands, inclining them to acknowledge given to him. The princes, the priests, and the its authority, and follow its lessons in all things. people were all leagued against him; the Phari- By his Spirit-causing Him to accompany the sees, the Sadducees, and the Herodians laid aside word that he may explain, recommend, and entheir jealousies and dissensions, and joined their force it. By his providences-disposing the power to crush him; rulers who before were at events and circumstances of their lives so as to enmity, forgot their alienation, and became one accomplish his purposes of mercy towards them. to make common cause against him; his own Thus he rules in their hearts, in their lives, in friends, terrified and despairing, forsook him and their families, and in the church. Everywhere fled; satan mustered all his forces to overthrow his supremacy is acknowledged, and his will is him, so much so, that our Lord said to him, their law. * This is your hour and the power of darkness;' And while he rules them, he defends them. death and hell combined their power to make Against their own hearts, which are deceitful him their prisoner. But all in vain—he rose and would draw them aside to vanity. Against from the dead, spoiling principalities and powers, temptations, which continually assail them and and made a show of them openly, triumphing seek to overthrow their constancy. Against over them in it.' He hath ascended on high, satan, who “goeth about, as a roaring lion, seek