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Remember the Sabbath-Day to keep it holy. Exod. xx. 8. I was in the Spirit
on the Lord's Day. Rev. i. 10. READER, I know not who, or what thou art; but may the God of all grace
bless this meditation to thy soul! Perhaps thou art a careless sinner, who to this day hast trifled with Sabbaths? O do not profano the Lord's Day any more! but if thou hast any value for thy soul, attend upon his worship, and desire to be in the Spirit on his day;' then wilt thou see and feel thy malady; look to Jesus for pardon, and Sabbath-Days will become precious to thy soul. Perhaps thou art a self-righteous Pharisee, punctual in outward services – so far is praise worthy; but awful is thy mistake, if thou makest any outward service the ground of thy acceptance, especially as the language of the day is, ‘ In the Lord have I righteousness and strength; and so wilt thou say, if ' in the Spirit. Or thou mayst have been a splendid professor, but now a grievous backslider - 0 may thou be' in the Spirit on the Lord's Day, then wilt thou look to God for pardon, to Jesus for fresh sprinklings of his blood, and to the Spirit for his quickening influences !If thou art a believer under sharp trials, mayst thou be in the Spirit;' then, when tribulations abound, consolations may abound also. If thou art a believer, walking close with God, rich in knowledge and experience, thcu wilt wish to be “in the Spirit,' that grace may be magnified, Josus more loved, and his name more honoured.
Reader, Whatever thou art, whether master or servant, parent or child, if thou wishest to be in the Spirit,' and wouldst have thy temporal and spiritual concerns prosper, make conscience of keeping the Sabbath-Day holy. The Sabbath is design'd, I know,
1 To train my soul for Heav'n ;
Then let me keep and think it too,
The best of all the seven.
Remember me, O my God, for good. Neh. xiii. 31. Divine Answer: Is
Ephraim my dear son? is he a pleasant child? For since I spuke against kim, I do earnestly remember him still; therefore my bowels are troubled for him: I will surely have mercy upon him. Jer. xxxi. 29. A book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon his name. Mal. iii. 16, 17, 18. I know the thoughts which I have towards you. Jer. xxix. 11.
As soon as I
appear with my prayers before the Lord, he writes all my petitions in his book of remembrance.
Should I not pray much? "Yes, O Lord; and though I have many things already in thy book, yet will I give thee occasion to write down more and more every hour. Thus nothing can be forgotten; all will be granted by Him. Delays we must expect; but all shall be made up with so much the larger gifts in due time, though the best will be reserved for a blissful eternity
Now let the Lord my Saviour smile,
And show my name upon his heart; I would forget my pains awhile,
And in the pleasure lose the smart. Dear Lord, imprint upon my breast,
And in the book of life my name;
I'd rather have it there impressid
Than in the bright records of fame. When the vast fire burns all things here,
Those letters shall securely stand, And in the Lamb's fair book appear,
Writ by th’ Eternal Father's hand.
And in this mountain shall the Lord of Hosts make unto all people a feast of fat things, a feast of wine on the lees; of fat things full of marrow ; of wines on the lees well refined. Isa. xxv. 6.
A FEAST bespeaks plenty, harmony, and joy. Many feasts were ap
pointed under the law, in commemoration of various deliverances and mercies. The Gospel appoints one great perpetual festival, in consequence of the one grand blessing, which comprehends all other mercies - Redemption by the blood of Christ.' The table is always spread, the company are always welcome, the season is always pleasant, and the joy is always new. Lord, I once was feeding upon husks, upon ashes, upon the wind, and drinking down iniquity like water ; but, O, wonderful love ! thou didst invite and bring me to thine own feast! Thou feedest me with the bread of life, and causest me to drink of the wine of thy consolation. May I never more have an appetite for the vanities of the world !
Why was I made to hear thy voice,
And enter while there's room,
And rather starve than come?
'Twas the same love that made the feast,
That sweetly forc'd us in;
And perish'd in our sin.
And he believed in the Lord, and he counted it to him for righteousness. Gen.xv.6. It is no uncommon thing in Scripture to put the act for the object, es.
pecially with regard to faith and hope. Thus hope signifies the object of hope. Jer. xiv. 8. 1 Tim. i. i. Heb. vi, 18. And faith is often put for the object or doctrine of faith, or that which is believed in; as when it is said, Paul preached the faith which once he destroyed; and Felix heard him concerning the faith of Christ ; and when the Scripture speaks of keeping and contending for the faith, and holding the mystery of the faith, and the like. Thus when Abraham is said to believe in the Lord, the meaning is, he believed in the promise of God, that he should have a seed, and a very numerous one; he believed that the Messiah would spring from his seed; he believed in him as his Saviour and Redeemer; he believed in him for righteousness; and he believed in his righteousness as justifying him before God. It was not the act of his faith, but the object of it; not the promise he believed, but what was promised, and his faith received even Christ and his righteousness. See this explained fully in Rom. iv. 3, 10, 22, 23, 24. Reader, Mark well how Ābraham was justified before God, not by faith as a work, but as apprehending Christ, and follow this example of the Father of the Faithful. It is by faith in Jesus Christ alone that we can be justified before God; by faith all the Old Testament saints were justified, as well as the New. This distinguishes the Christian religion from all systems of morality ; and to err in this, is to err in the fundamentals of Christianity.
This do in remembrance of me.
Luke xxii. 19.
Come, my soul, obey thy dying Lord's command; let it be thy delight, as
it is thy privilege, to attend thy Master at table, to take a nearer view of his bleeding love, and, by a renewed act of faith, obtain a fresh taste and renewed pledge of the precious benefits contained therein. Stagger not through unbelief; it is a blessed truth, Jesus died for sinners: this is the foundation of a sinner's 'hope: let this encourage thee, O my soul; thou art a sinner, guilty and defiled! Jesu's blood cleanses from all sin; he is the fountain opened for thy uncleanness; thou art by nature a child of wrath, condemned by the law, exposed to the curse ; but Jesus was made a curse for thec ; thou art unrighteous, unholy; but Jesus is made of God unto thee righteousness and sanctification : thou art weak, beset with enemies; bis strengthe shall be perfected in thy weakness, and thou, by faith, shall be more than conqueror through him that loved thee. Thou art afraid of perishing at the last; look to Jesus, he purchased thee with his blood; he will not give theo up; none can pluck thee out of his hand.
Rise then, O my soul, and come to the banquet of love, and partake of the blessings of the everlasting covenant; beseech the Lord to manifest his love and seal thy pardon, renew thy strength, and enable thee to travel the remaining part of thy pilgrimage till thou come to Mount Zion, and be admitted a welcome guest at the marriage-supper in Heaven.
I thank thee, O my dying Lord,
For thine appointed Feast;
Vouchsafe to meet me at thy board, And smile upon thy guest !