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march out of Egypt not beat down our foes, and conduct our triumphant way through a thousand dangers and over a thousand difficulties on to the promised land? Oh, yes ; there is all efficiency and sufficiency in Jesus Christ to crown the work of grace, and to complete what he has begun. There is his Holy Spirit to sanctify you; there are stores of grace which, like the widow's barrel that grew no emptier for all the meals it furnished, will appear the fuller the more you draw on them. As with an arch, the grace of God stands the firmer, the more weight you lay on it; its sufficiency, at least, will be the more evident; the more clearly you will see the truth of the promise, My grace is sufficient for thee. With the well ever full and ever flowing, our vessels need never be empty. Whether, therefore, you want more faith, more purity of heart or peace of mind, more light or love, a humbler or a holier spirit, a calmer or a tenderer conscience, a livelier sense of Christ's excellences or of your own unworthiness, more tears for Christ's feet or more honors for his head, fear not to draw, to hope, to ask, too much. No earthly fortune will stand daily visits to the bank, but this will. You may ask too little, you cannot ask too much ; you may go too seldom, you cannot go too often, to the throne ; for in Jesus dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.
III. There is a constant supply of pardoning and sanctifying grace in Christ.
It pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell ; dwell, not come and go, like a wayfaring man who tarrieth but a night, who is with us to-day, and away to-morrow; not like the shallow, noisy, treacherous brook that fails, when most needed, in heat of
summer, but like this deep-seated spring, that rising silently though affluently at the mountain's foot, and having unseen communication with its exhaustless supplies, is ever flowing over its grassy margin, equally unaffected by the long droughts that dry the wells, and the frosts that pave the neighboring lake with ice. So fail the joys of earth ; so flow, supplied by the fullness that is in Christ, the pleasures and the peace of piety. It cannot be otherwise. If a man love me, says Jesus, he will keep my words; and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.
I have read how, in the burning desert, the skeletons of unhappy travellers, all withered and white, are found, not only on the way to the fountain, but lying grim and ghastly on its banks, with their skulls stretched over its very margin. Panting, faint, their tongue cleaving to the roof of their mouth, ready to fill a cup with gold for its fill of water, they press on to the well, steering their course by the tall palms that stand full of hope above the glaring sands. Already, in fond anticipation, they drink where others had been saved. They reach it. Alas! sad sight for the dim eyes of fainting men, the well is dry. With stony horror in their looks, how they gaze into the empty basin, or fight with man and beast for some muddy drops that but exasperate their thirst. The desert reels around them. Hope expires. Some cursing, some praying, they sink, and themselves expire. And by and by the sky darkens, lightnings flash, loud thunders roll, the rain pours down, and, fed by the showers, the treacherous waters rise to play in mockery with long fair tresses, and kiss the pale lips of death.
But yonder, where the cross stands up high to mark
the fountain of the Saviour's blood, and heaven's sanctifying grace, no dead souls lie. Once a Golgotha, Calvary has ceased to be a place of skulls. Where men went once to die, they go now to live; and to none that ever went there to seek pardon, and peace, and holiness, did God ever say, Seek ye me in vain. There are times when the peace of God's people, always like a river, is like one in flood, overflowing its margin, and rolling its mighty current between bank and brae. There are times when the righteousness of God's people, always like the waves of the sea, seems like the tide at the stream, as, swelling beyond its ordinary bounds, it floats the boats and ships that lie highest, driest on the beach. But at all times and seasons, faith and prayer find fullness of mercy to pardon, and of grace to sanctify, in Jesus Christ. The supply is inexhaustible.
Mountains have been exhausted of their gold, mines of their diamonds, and the depths of ocean of their pearly gems. The demand has emptied the supply. Over once busy scenes, silence and solitude now reign ; the caverns ring no longer to the miner's hammer, nor is the song of the pearl-fisher heard upon the deep. But the riches of grace are inexhaustible. All that have gone before us have not made them less, and we shall make them no less to those who follow us. When they have supplied the wants of unborn millions, the last of Adam's race, that lonely man, over whose head the sun is dying, beneath whose feet the earth is reeling, shall stand by as full a fountain as this day invites you to drink and live, to wash and be clean.
I have found it an interesting thing to stand on the edge of a noble rolling river, and to think, that although it has been flowing on for six thousand years,
watering the fields, and slaking the thirst of a hundred generations, it shows no sign of waste or want; and when I have watched the rise of the sun, as he shot above the crest of the mountain, or in a sky draped with golden curtains, sprang up from his ocean bed, I have wondered to think that he has melted the snows of so many winters, and renewed the verdure of so many springs, and painted the flowers of so many summers, and ripened the golden harvests of so many autumns, and yet shines as brilliant as ever, his eye not dim, nor his natural strength abated, nor his floods of light less full for centuries of boundless profusion. Yet what are these but images of the fullness that is in Christ? Let that feed your hopes, and cheer your hearts, and brighten your faith, and send you away this day happy and rejoicing. For, when judgment flames have licked up that flowing stream, and the light of that glorious sun shall be quenched in darkness or veiled in the smoke of a burning world, the fullness that is in Christ shall flow on throughout eternity in the bliss of the redeemed. Blessed Saviour, Image of God, divine Redeemer! in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore. What thou hast gone to heaven to prepare, may we be called up at death to enjoy!
And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself.—COLOSSIANS I. 20.
The salutations that pass between man and man differ in different countries. Boaz, for example, goes out to see his reapers. The field is flashing with sickthe tall corn is falling to the sweep
young men's arms, and to maidens' songs; and gleaning on behind them come widows, and orphans, and little children, all made welcome to share the bounties of providence and the fullness of a good man's cup. A busy, joyous, crowded harvest-field, where brown labor piles her healthful task in a bright autumn day, is one of the most pleasant scenes a man can look on; though now-a-days we not only miss the gleaners, but also that kindly, pious intercourse between master and. servants which lent a peculiar charm to Bethlehem's harvests. Boaz moves on from band to band, and, as each stops to do him reverence, he says, The Lord be with you, and, meet reply to such pious and courteous language, they answer, The Lord bless thee. Without undervaluing the progress which the world has made since then, in arts and science, in wealth and the more general diffusion of the pleasures and comforts of life, surely it has not been all gain. It is difficult to look