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trust thou, the loving Saviour, now dwellest by faith. But
may I become more like thee, O Christ! in my spirit and behaviour towards all with whom I have to deal. Shalt thou freely forgive, and wonderfully extenuate such aggravated injuries as were inflicted on thee; and shall not I freely forgive the infinitely smaller trespasses that may be committed against me? O let me have the same mind that was in Christ.
MEDITATIONS ON THE FESTIVALS OF THE
Luke xxii, 19. This is my body which was given for you.
And was the Son of God made in the likeness of sinful flesh, so that his sacred body might be given for me? O glorious ransom price for my recovery! Most complete must be that redemption for which so great a price was paid. Yes, Christ, my Lord, whose name is called Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, and The Prince of Peace, was born of a virgin, and took our nature upon him, that he might, by suffering for sin, satisfy the justice, and appease the righteous anger of a holy God! And to what a life was this holy child Jesus born! O Jesus, I would now recollect that thy body was given to weariness, labour, painfuloess, and watchings oft. It was given to treatment most shameful and most tormenting; to spitting, smiting, and cruel mockings; to the lashes of the whip,
to the thorns, the nails, the cross, the spear, death, and the grave. All this, and thy Father's sensible and felt desertion, was suffered for us men, and for our salvation. Thus my body was redeemed from the power of sin and Satan, and recovered to light, life, and joy. Precious Saviour! the gift of thy body procures for me pardon and peace. O then let me give my body and soul to thee; let them not any longer be yielded to the degrading service of sin, but become wholly thine. Expel every enemy of thine and of mine; and come, blessed Redeemer, and dwell in my heart by faith every day. May love to thee fill and pervade my whole soul, and constrain me to live wholly to thee,
1 Cor. xv, 20. Now is Christ risen from the dead, and
become the first-fruits of them that slept. While we specially at the Lord's table, seem to sit at the foot of the cross, and commemorate our Saviour's death, we may still rejoice in the recollection that Christ is indeed risen. If Christ were not raised, then truly faith in him is vain, and we are yet in'our sins. But never was a fact so fully proved and established as this fact was. Let me then now contemplate this great and all-important fact. His resurrection is the foundation of my hope ; it declares him to be the Son of God, and a Redeemer mighty to save: it shews that we are justified and secured from condemnation, and is the means of our spiritual life. O Lord my God, not only give me a firm and unshaken confidence in this great fact; but grant that I may remember it with unfeigned gratitude, and let me receive from my risen Saviour, all those blessings which he is exalted to bestow.
But especially would I derive comfort from looking at his resurrection, as a type and pledge of the believer's rising from the grave. As he rose, so shall we risé also. How cheering to the mind awakened to a sense of the nearness and magnitude of eternity, is the conviction that through Christ death has now lost its sting, and the grave its victory. Whosoever believeth in him shall never die. Death shall be but the gate of life, the beginning of endless joy.
Rom. iv, 25. Who was delivered for our offences, and
was raised again for our justification.
I will go to thy table with joy, and tell out thy works with gladness, O most mighty Saviour, who hast not only died for my sins, but risen again for my justification. Indeed, what comfort would I have found in this memorial of thy death, if it had not been for thy resurrection. This Sacrament then would only have represented thy sufferings, and renewed my sorrow, to think that so excellent a person had failed of my deliverance! but now it is become a feast of joy, because it is an assurance of thy resurrection, as well as a commemoration of thy passion. Since thou livest, glorified Jesus, we live also. Thy resurrection gives life to our hopes, makes our sorrows light, our lives cheerful, and our death the gate of immortality. Our fears are dispelled, and our troubled hearts are quieted with this, -The Lord is risen; yea, the Lord is risen indeed.” *
Luke xxiv, 51. And it came to pass, while he blessed
them, he was parted from them and carried up
into heaven, How full of love, even to the end, was our adorable Lord! The last words sounding in the ears of his disciples was a blessing. He ascended to heaven blessing them, and still is the same yesterday, to day, and for
O ascended Saviour, may my heart rise whither thou art gone; and now Christ is gone to heaven, may my
affections be set on things above. I know that my Redeemer liveth. This is a blessed confidence that can support the soul in the severest trials. He makes himself known too in the breaking of bread. I would not then only remember his death; but, looking at his ascension, see the power given to him, mark the gifts which he has received, dwell upon the work which he is now carrying on, and daily come to him, and hold communion with him.
Remember, too, O my soul, this same Jesus which was thus taken up into heaven, shall so come in like manner as he was seen going into heaven. Now at his table, I profess my expectation of his coming again. O may I be always ready for that day. The Lord in mercy grant that this sacred Institution
my heart to my ascended Saviour, and lead me to look, and diligently prepare for, his second coming.
Acts xix, 2. Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye
believed ? Where true faith is, there are also the gracious
influences of the Spirit; O may I so believe as to receive the Holy Spirit, which is the seal of God, (Eph. i, 13.) shewing who are his redeemed people. Give unto me all the evidences which distinguish those who have received this gift. They are born of the Spirit, O Lord, produce in me the new heart and the new spirit, the daily turning from darkness to light, from sin to holiness, and from the world to God my
Saviour. They have the spirit of prayer. O raise my
heart constantly to thee in holy aspirations through the day, and give me real desires after thee in puplic, family, and social worship, so that I may never be content with a formal round of duties. They mortify the deeds of the body. The Lord grant that I too may strive against every temptation, resist sin, and never yield to carnal indulgences. They bring forth the fruits of
. righteousness. O that I may manifestly bear the fruit of love, joy, peace, gentleness, goodness, meekness, long-suffering, faith, and temperance.
O Lord, my Heavenly Father, I would feel and acknowledge that though, through thy great mercy, I am not I trust wholly barren of spiritual fruit, yet there is little indeed brought forth that may glorify God, and adorn the doctrine of my Saviour. O thou who hearest prayer, and givest good things to them that ask, give me that best gift--thy Holy Spirit.
“ Behold, thy Spirit hath converted and sanctified millions; let me therefore, together with thy whole church, receive here such proportions of thy Holy Spirit, as may suppress my evil affections, revive my dead heart, comfort my dejected mind, and turn my ignorance, disobedience and sorrow, into knowledge, and practice, and holy joy. Let the Spirit rest upon