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thy pardon? These are inseparable. Let no soul deceive himself. Every believer is washed in the blood of Jesus, and made a priest unto God. As the high priest under the law "put in the breastplate of judg. ment the Urim and Thummim;" (Exod. xxviii. 30;) so every anointed one is endued with light and perfection. The light of the knowledge of Jesus, and the perfection of grace which dwells in him, is communicated to his members. Hence, in the exercise of faith, their souls obey willingly, serve cheerfully, and delight in Jesus continually. All is of grace : conceived in the womb of the morning of eternity, its rich profusion freely poured forth in time, like the pearly dew upon the vegetable creation, producing, verdure, refreshment, and fruits. So, disciple, all thy mercies come from above. Freely thou hast received an understanding to know, a will to choose, and affections to cleave unto Jesus. “Render therefore unto Cæsar the things that are Cæsar's ;" take all the shame of thy sinful free-will, and nature state to thyself, and be humbled; "but unto God the things that are God's.” Even thyself, and all that thou art, devote to him. By his grace "I am what I am," 1 Cor. xv. 10.
Dec. 13.-Ye are not your own; for ye are bought with a price.—1 Cor. vi. 19, 20.
Oh, how dear is every believer to God the Father, God the Saviour, and God the Spirit, the Comforteri Each divine person claims proprietorship in them: the Father by election; the Son by redemption; the Holy Spirit by inhabitation. How should this, O soul, call forth love, excite gratitude, inflame with affection, and quicken thee to glorify thy Lord! Consider, daily thou art not thy own, but a ransomed captive of Jesus. Reflect on the price he paid for thy redemption. Thou art bought with blood; blood divine; blood spilt on the accursed tree, in direful agony and shameful death, was the price of thy purchase. So thy Saviour bought thee at the hands of justice, and paid the utmost farthing of thy debt to law. He redeemed thee from the power of Satan, and snatched thee as a brand from the jaws of death and hell. And canst thou ever think thy redeeming Lord will leave the purchase of his blood to be the prey of the devil ? After he hath bought thee at such an inestimable price, will he not claim thee as his own, and bring thee safe to glory? Oh, beware of indulging unbelief! Listen not to the suggestions of Satan, nor the voice of false teachers. Fly every thought which impeaches thy Lord's love, wisdom, or power. Consider, thou art thy Lord's freeman, as a chaste virgin thou art espoused to Jesus. In faith thou hast plighted thy troth; hast voluntarily given thyself, hand and heart, to be thy Lord's. What then is thy duty ? what infinite obligations art thou under to forsake all other lovers, and cleave to thy Lord alone, with full purpose of heart! Dost thou believe thy vile body shall shortly be sown in the silent grave? and that it shall as certainly be raised a glorious body like unto thy Saviour's? How much doth it concern thee to devote that body to his service and glory on earth, which shall reign with Jesus in heaven! Is thy body the temple of the Holy Ghost ? canst thou reflect on its dignity, and debase and pollute it with filthy lusts? God forbid ! Doth thy spirit enjoy sweet fellowship with the Father and his Son Jesus? doth the Spirit itself bear witness with thy spirit, that thou art a child of God? Where is thy love to the truth as it is in Jesus? where thy zeal for his cause and interest ? Remember whose thou art. Be concerned to live up to thy privilege and dignity. Be earnest in prayer, for power to obey the obligations which infinite and eternal love hath laid thee under. “Glorify thy Lord in thy body and in thy spirit which are his." "Řnow ye not that ye are the temple of God ?” 1 Cor. iii. 16.
Dec. 14.-And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep : for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.—Rom. xiii. 11.
It is an affecting but a real truth, that wise virgins are apt to slumber and sleep, as well as the foolish. Through the pressures of a body of sin and death, and the opiates of worldly ease and self-indulgence, they sometimes fall into a drowsy state, and a sleepy frame of soul. Hence, they lose their former delight in religious duties and spiritual exercises. Their love to God and their brethren grows cold; their zeal for Christ's glory and his precious truth declines. The enemy takes great advantages against them, and would triumph in their entire destruction. But that can never be, for the Lord prevents it. "He that keepeth Israel neither slumbers nor sleeps." Will the loving father suffer his dear children to sleep in their beds, till devoured by raging flames ? If we, being evil, have such love for our children, how infinitely greater is our heavenly Father's love! Therefore he alarms and awakens souls to duty and watchfulness.
Thus Paul, his faithful watchman, lifts up his voice of warning, cries the hour, and reproves disciples as acting unbecomingly. It being both unreasonable and unseasonable, for those who know the time of day, to indulge sloth and heaviness. It is high time to awake out of sleep. Come, christian, look about thee, look up. The Saviour reigns. It is broad day. See the sun shining; nay, just in its meridian. Thou art near thy journey's end, in sight of thy Father's house. Thy Lord is coming to meet thee. What! wilt thou sleep on and take thy rest? The Spirit says to thee, "Now is thy salvation nearer than when thou didst first be: lieve." The Lord is at hand. "Let thy moderation, , in care for the things of this life, be known unto all men.” Why grasping so much of perishing things ? Thou canst not hold them long. Off hands, before death makes thee quit thy hold. Think what thou art spiritually born for, called to, and art soon to take possession of. Verily, if thy soul is broad awake, thou seest things as they really are. Time, with all its toys and pleasures, how short! Eternity, with all its rich glories and inestimable blessings, how long! Jesus, with all his endearing amiableness, in his adorable person and finished salvation, the best object of thy hope, love, peace, and joy. For shame, sleep not, when the delightful presence and heavenly fellowship of such a friend may be enjoyed. If the sense of this be lost by sleep, resolve with the church, I will not give sleep to mine eyes, until I find the Lord, Psalm cxxxii. 4, 5.
Dec. 15.—Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit
men, be strong.--1 Cor. xvi. 13. Believers in the Lord Jesus partake now of his everlasting salvation. No enemy can deprive them of the full enjoyment of it in glory; because “they are kept by the mighty power of God.” But we are daily to consider that it is "through faith,” 1 Pet. i. 5. Do we believe in atonement of Jesus' blood ? do we rely on the perfection of his righteousness? Why so? Because the word of the Lord is the warrant for our faith. Hence, O soul, exhortations from the same word to duty are equally binding on thy life and practice. The same Lord who has saved us from our enemies, calls us to watch against them. Jesus, who is gone to prepare a place for us in glory, directs us how to de mean ourselves in the way to it. Christian soldiers, shall we neglect the commands of the Captain of our salvation, when his glory, and the peace and comfort of our own souls, are equally concerned ? Surely not.
Through watchfulness many evils are prevented, many blessings are enjoyed. When a christian is off his guard, or asleep when he should watch, how is he exposed to attacks, and liable to fall by the temptations
of the enemy! It is for our good that the Lord commands it as our duty. It is through his power,
that hereby the good soldier of Jesus is enabled to stand fast in the profession, power, and comfort of faith. It was Paul's joy in the view of death, that he had “ kept the faith," 2 Tim. iv. 7. Would we enjoy the same comfort ? Strive, in the strength of the Lord, to follow his example. Check the risings of unbelief. Oppose the workings of carnal reason. Resist steadfastly in the faith the subtle devices of Satan. This is our duty and wisdom. So shall we quit ourselves like men of valour; like victorious saints of old, “who overcame every enemy through the blood of the Lamb." Droop not, o believer, thy strength is the Lord's omnipotence. Lift up thy head with boldness, thine enemies are vanquished by thy conquering Jesus. Be strong. Look out of thyself. Look to the Strong for strength. Look unto Jesus continually. Rely only on the power of his might hourly. His arm is not shortened. The reliance of faith engages his power. The cry of faith obtains victory. There is an open and effectual door, by which thou shalt enter into glory; but thou must fight thy way through. Consider daily this is our motto, “More than conquerors through Jesus who hath loved us," Rom. viii. 37. "Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus,” 2 Tim. ii. 1.
DEC. 16.—Blessed are the pure in heart ; for they shall see God.-Matt. v. 8.
Every institution of purification, under the law, referred to Jesus, the purifier of his people. Old Testament saints received inward purity of heart from the same fountain, Jesus ; and through the same means, faith in him. Without this inward purity of heart, without holiness, no man ever did, or ever shall, see the Lord. When Jesus comes to his temple, even the hearts of his people, he “sits as a refiner and purifier.”