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your enquiry flow from regret for what you have been and done? does it flow from a wifhfulness and defire after intereft in the mediation of Christ? then, firs, there is hope in Ifrael concerning this thing. Yes; you, who have not hitherto waited for the Father, nor cried to him, in a fuitable manner; you may, you fhould, hope in Chrift, as the hope and Saviour of Ifrael. Who knows, but you were amongst thefe, in whofe room he waited, for whofe behoof he cried? who knows, but your prefent concern is the fruit of his cry being answered by the Father? You have good reafon now, though never before, to knock at the door of mercy. Our Lord has been knocking many a day at the door of your hearts; and are you now fet a knocking at the door of his grace? are you? then it is a hopeful fign that a mutual bargain is on foot; a promifing symptom that a reciprocal opening will foon take place.
You who neither know, nor care, for these things, dying in your prefent fituation; the Father, inftead of inclining to you, will abhor you, lothe you, fpue you out of his mouth, and tear you in pieces, when there fhall be none to deliver. However neglectful of crying to him now, you shall cry, and not be heard; you fhall make many prayers, and not be regarded; and fhall meet with the fame contempt from him, that his calls, offers, and tenders of mercy, now meet with from you. At prefent you have no fecurity, that the wrath of God will be warded off a moment longer; no fecurity, that you fhall be another day, or hour, out of hell. Going down to the grave without interest in the Redeemer's cry, you'll meet him as the Lion of the tribe of Judah, ready to devour and destroy you; you'll meet him with vials of vengeance in both hands; you will meet him, as the executor of
the Father's Juftice against them who know not God, and obey not the gospel; you will meet him, as an implacable, inexorable, enemy. Though you will not meet him now, coming in the Father's name to fave; you cannot fhun that future interview with him, when he fhall come in the Father's Name, fhall come revealed in flaming fire, to condemn you. Neither rocks nor mountains will then be able to screen your guilty heads; nor men nor devils, to deliver you out of his tremenduous hand.
Saints fhould, upon the whole, be exhorted to admire and adore the grace of God your Saviour, in his waiting and crying; and the grace of God, his Father and your Father, in his inclining to him, and hearing his cry. Study the imitation of him, and dependence on him. Seek communion with' him, and conformity to him.-Sinners fhould likewife be exhorted to fly to Jefus Chrift, from the wrath to come. Your duty and interest conspire for enforcing the exhortation.
Of the Father's bringing up the Man Chrift out of the horrible pit and miry clay.
HE Father raifed up the Man Chrift from the state of the dead, and raised him above the poffibility of fuffering or dying any more.
He raised him up from the ftate of the dead, reftored him to life again, reunited his once parted foul and body, to be parted no more for ever. The refurrection of Chrift, being a doctrine and event
of the highest importance to finners, is clearly taught in the gospel; and has often been fupported by the moft accurate and conclufive chain of argument. It is a topic wherein the most masterly pens have been frequently and honourable employed; and a topic, on the belief and improvement of which our whole hope, and all onr comfort, for eternity, hang. "For if Chrift be not rifen (fays the apoftle) then "is our preaching vain, and your faith is alfo vain," I Cor. xv. 14. In his fufferings and death, our Lord was only paying the ranfom; and unless he had furvived that gloomy period, there could have been no evidence that the price was accepted, or the discharge procured. But lo! the paffage under confideration brings good news, news big with the refurrection of Chrift, and therefore with the falvation of finners. Did the angel, in the hearing of the eastern fhepherds, upon our Lord's entrance in to the horrible pit and miry clay, did he fay, "Behold "I bring you good tidings of great joy, which fhall "be to all people; for unto you is born, this day, "in the city of David, a Saviour, which is Chrift "the Lord?" Luke i. 10, 11. Did the feraphic fongfter thus hymn the birth of Jefus Chrift; and fhall we ceafe to celebrate the memory of his refurrection from the dead? Paffing the numberless variety of proofs for this glorious event, through the New Taftament; we shall only take notice of the 24th chapter of Luke wherein it is once, again and again, mentioned with evidence. In the gift .verf. Cleophas, and another difciple not named by the hiftorian, are faid to have known him in the village Emmaus, known him to be the very Jefus whom the Jews and Romans, with wicked hands, cruci. fied and flew; the very Jefus who, the other day, bled, groaned, expired, and was fealed up in the heart of the earth. In the 34th verf. the eleven
apostles, and others who waited for the confolation of Ifrael, feem, from the teftimony they had heard, to have been perfuaded of the truth of this event; for they faid," The Lord is rifen indeed, and hath "appeared unto Simon." And in the 36th verf. they are all reprefented as having feen Chrift ftanding in the midst of them, who, to confirm their faith, and to render their teftimony concerning his refurrection the more valid, fhewed them his hands and his feet, and allowed them to handle and fee, that, with greater certainty, they might judge for themselves, and bear witnefs to others. As this was, doubtless, our Lord's view in being fo particular, in caufing them furvey him with fuch ferutiny and exactnefs, fo the apoftle fhews, that the tranfmiting a proof of his refurrection to pofterity, was the end. they were chiefly to keep in their eye. For, when about to elect one from amongst the brethren, to fupply Judas's place in the college of the apoftles, the reafon affigned by Peter for this election was,> that he might be witness with them of the Lord's refurreon, Acts i. 22.
But the Father not only raifed up Chrift from the dead, but raised him above the capacity of fuffering or dying any more. According to the literal import of the figure under view, one might be taken out of fuch a pit and mire, and yet afterwards fall into the fame, or equal danger; or, if a criminal, he might commit fuch after faults, as fhould juftly expose him to the fame punishment: but as to a rifen Chrift, neither of thefe can poffible have place. With regard to his falling into fuch a place of danger, his prefent abode, in the highest heavens, as Man Mediator, abfolutely fecures him against it; and with respect unto a legal fubjection to punishment again, that is equally impoffible; for, "by one offering," he has intirely reached all the ends of
his undertaking, and thence rendered the repetition of his fufferings altogether unneceffary, Heb.
SE C T. II.
As to the efficient caufe of our Lord's refurrection, it was doubtlefs the power of God: and though his own power, as the fecond Perfon of the ever-bleffed Trinity, and thence, co-equal with the Father and the holy Ghoft, may, nay muft, be confidered as exerted and difplayed in this important event; yet, for the jufteft reafons, the deed is afcribed in fcripture to Jehovah, in the perfon of the Father. It was at the Father's inftance, as the guardian of law and justice, that our Lord was first incarcerate in the pit of fuffering, and then in the prifon of death; and therefore, that the honour of the fufferer, the credit of the furety, and the abfoJution of finners, might be as legal, as evident; it vas proper, highly proper, he fhould be releafed at the fame inftance, and by the fame authority. Nor could any thing fhort of the power of God, have effected this refurection from the dead. For if created power cannot produce life at first, nor prevent death at laft; no more can it poffibly overcome death, and restore to life again. Accordingly, infpired writers afcribe the refurection of Chrift intirely to the power of the Father. Whom God "(fays the apoftle) hath raised up, having loofed "the pains of death," Acts ii. 24. or the cords and bands of death, as fome read that phrafe, i. e. those obligations by which Chrift was under the neceffity of fuffering and dying; as if the apostle had faid "Whom God hath raifed up, having given back "the Mediator's bond of cautionry, amply dischar"ged, into his own hand." Again, "This Jefus (fays the fame apostle) hath God raised up, where