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cular case is described in Luke, iv. 18. Our Saviour says, the Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed and commissioned me with full powers to relieve every distressed object that shall apply to me for help. Are you a poor afflicted sinner? He has good news for you: he was ordained to preach the gospel to the poor. Have you a broken contrite heart? He is sent to heal the broken-hearted. , Are you in bondage to sin and Satan? He is sent to preach and to give deliverance to the captives. Is your understanding blind and ignorant of spiritual things? He is sent to preach and to give recovering of sight to the blind. Are you fast bound with the chains of sin, and has the iron entered into your souls? He is sent to set at liberty them that are bruised. Here is your character: you are poor brcken-hearted captives, blind and miserable. Here is your promise; Christ is appointed of God, and has a divine commission to supply all your wants, Is it presumption then in you to apply this promise to yourselves ? What! after God has graciously made it for the comfort of your afflicted consciences, wiil you say, it would be presumption in us to take comfort from it? My brethren, the promise cannot be broken. By relying upon it, it is yours. Your dependence upon it calls upon God's faithfulness to ful. til it to you. And it is no presumption, it is a high · act of faith not to stagger at the promise through un. belief, but to give glory to God by relying upon it. May he enable you thus to give glory to him, and you shall find that his promise is like himself, unchangeable, and his word cannot be broken !
Since then there is balm in Gilead for wounded consciences, provided purposely for you, and since your objections against receiving it are groundless, why, my brethren, will you not apply to the almighty Physician, and now ask his help? O that this may be the accepted time, and this the day of your salvation ! Fall down at his feet, implore his assistance, and his tender heart will melt with compassion to
wards you. If you are discouraged in your addresses to him, it is because you have not clear ideas of his power and love. He is almighty. He can heal the most broken heart, and the most wounded conscience; and his love never failed to influence his power to heal such cases when they came before him. Keep not then poring upon your wounds and sores. · By looking too much at them you cherish your doubts and fears. Look unto Jesus. Remember his advice, 6 look unto me, and be ye saved." You should look into yourselves to see your want of salvation, and look unto him for a supply of your wants. And that you may be supplied out of his fulness, believe his promises. Rely upon his faithfulness to fulfil them to your souls, and thereby you engage his power to give you health and salvation.,
3. Blessed be his holy name for exerting his divine virtue at this day, and for healing all manner of spiritual sickness, and all manner of disease among the people. Great numbers now alive are witnesses for him, that his hand is not shortened. Still he saves his people from sin, and from all the maladies brought upon them by sin. You, my Christian brethren, · who have had experience of his divine power and love,
ought to show forth his praise. It becometh you well to be thankful. Much has been forgiven you, therefore you should love much. The sweet psalmist of Israel calls upon you, by his example, to a grateful acknowledgment of the Lord's mercies— Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me bless his holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all bis benefits; who forgiveth all thine iniquities, who healeth all thine infirmities !”—Psal. ciii. 1, 2, 3. After you have received such great benefits, it will be your delight to praise him with your lips, and with your lives. The health and strength which he has freely given, you will use in his service and to his glory, until he take you to himself, and give you more happy experience of his great salvation, by delivering your soul from every infirmity and corruption; and
the time will not be long before he will raise your bodies from the grave, and make them like his own glorious body. And then he will get himself honour indeed, when he shall heal both body and soul of all the wounds of sin, and shall heal them for ever and ever. That is the glory of our Physician, he heals to eternity. He makes the spirits of just men perfect ; and they stand before the throne of God without any spot or stain of corruption. And in the morning of the resurrection this corruptible body shall put on incorruption, and this mortal shall put on immortality. Thus he bestows eternal health and salvation upon both body and soul. Where is there, nay, where can there be such a physician? There is none like unto thee, O Lord, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders. Still thou art displaying the wonders of thy power and love, and administering thy sovereiga balm for recovering the health of the daughter of thy people. O that thou wouldst display thy divine virtue among us this day! Arise, thou sun of righteousness, upon all this congregation, with healing under thy wings, and save us from every malady of sin, from the pollution, from the guilt, and from the power of it, and save us from the punishment of it, with thine eternal salvation! Hear us, thou almighty Saviour, and answer us to the glory of the Father, and of the Holy Spirit, three co-equal and co-eternal persons in one Jehovah, to whom we give honour and worship, and blessing and praise, now and for ever, Amen and Amen.
On the Promises of God.
“ Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious Promises."
II. Peter, i. 4.
W HEN the Lord first published his law in para
dise, he enforced it with proper sanctions. He promised to our first parents the continuance of his favour, and immortal life, if they continued to keep the law; but if they should transgress it, he threatened them with the loss of his favour, and with the first and the second death. Upon their transgression the promises became null and void. All right and title to them was forfeited, and the sovereign lawgiver was bound to inflict the threatenedl penalties. His truth, his justice, his holiness, called upon him to put the sanctions of the law in force. Accordingly the of fenders were arrested and brought to his bar; and being examined, they confessed their crime, but studied to throw part of the blame upon their tempters. The man could make no other defence, but that the woman offered him the temptation: and the woman had no plea to urge, bnt that the serpent beguiled her. Upon this confession they were found guilty; but the Lord God, whose mercies are over all his works, was pleased to make a discovery to them of the covenant of grace. He revealed to them his mind and will concerning the pardon of their transgression, and promised them a Saviour, who should bruise the serpent's head, and thereby destroy his power. The serpent's poison lies in his head, and when this is bruised he can do no more mischief. The promised seed was to undertake this work, and for this purpose was the Son of God to be manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. This first promise, and all the following promises of grace and mercy, centre in Jesus Christ: for all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him amen, unto the glory of God; in him they are yea, he undertook to ratify and to make them good, and in him they are amen, they are confirmed and fulfilled to believers. Every promise made in Christ is an act of God's free grace, and which, being made, his perfections bind him to fulfil; for he has engaged in the promise to give the grace and blessing therein mentioned to those who believe in Jesus Christ; so that the believer's happi. ness consists in living by faith upon the promises. Faith apprehends and receives Christ as held forth in the promise, and thereby gets possession of the promised blessing. While faith is kept thus in act and exercise, the believer walks safely and comfortably: although he has many enemies, and is in the midst of many dangers, yet he has a promise of God's help to support him in every state and circumstance of life, and to carry him through all trials and troubles. If he rely upon this promised help, he cannot be disappointed : for the promise cannot possibly fail. All the perfections of God stand engaged to see it fulfilled, and when faith calls upon God, and relies on him for the fulfilling of it, he cannot deny himself, or break the word that is gone out of his mouth. Faith brings down his almighty power, to make a way for the fulfilling of the promise, and thus the believer re. ceives a support under all dangers, safety against all enemies, and a cordial against all troubles. This is his happiness: he staggers not at the promise of God through unbelief, but is strong in faith, giving