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ing age, have in like manner looked to Jesus, and yet remained in the gall of bitterness and in the bond of iniquity ?
many have been familiar with their Bibles, and with the sufferings of Jesus; how
many have contemplated a crucified Saviour as exhibited to their view by his servants; how many have not only heard and seen, but tasted and handled of the word of life, and yet died in their sins ! Astonishing this !-to be so near salvation, and not to reach it; to have in their hands the sovereign remedy for their distemper, and to derive no benefit from it! What can be the cause of this? Or, rather, is it not obvious ? They were never thoroughly convinced of their dangerous situation ; they lived careless and secure, and though Christ crụcified was often exhibited to their view, though they often looked to him like the Jews of old, as they passed by; yet they never looked to him as a Saviour. They.never, from a sense of the grievous disease under which they laboured, looked to him that they might be healed.
It is not enough, therefore, my brethren, that Jesus sometimes occupies your thoughts. Your thoughts of him must
be to the last degree real, serious, and believing You must behold sin in all its malignity. You must view your condition by nature in all its horrors. You must be ready to cry out, “ What shall I 6 do to be saved !” Thus, surrounded on every side with danger, you must be convinced of your need of a saviour ;-that you are dead in trespasses and in sins, and cannot make a single effort to save yourselves. You must also be convinced that Jesus alone can save you ;--that “ there is none other name given under “ heaven by which you can be saved, but 6 the name of Jesus.” Some of you may perhaps be ready to say, “ Will he think “ of me? Surely he did not die for such “ a sinner as I am ; surely even his blood “ cannot wash away the stain of my
guilt !” How delightful, O Christians, in such a situation, will be the words of Jesus ? 66 Look unto me, and be ye “ saved, all the ends of the earth.” Look unto me, sinners of
every country and of every age,-look unto me ye who are farthest removed in hope, as well as in place,-ye who are the ends of the earth,—who deem yourselves the meanest and most polluted of mankind,
“ Look unto me, and be ye saved." « Though your sins be as scarlet, they “ shall be white as snow;" “ tho' they be “ red as crimson, they shall be as wool.” Then will you be encouraged to lift up your head, and to cast an eye of faith and of hope to Jesus ; and you will behold in him every qualification that a perishing sinner, humbled and broken under a sense of guilt, can require in a Saviour. Though the spark of spiritual life in you be extremely faint, though hope and despair, like the quiverings of an expiring flame, alternately take possession of your mind; yet you will behold in Jesus a gentle and a compassionate Saviour, who will not break the bruised reed, nor quench the smoking flax. You are not only covered, but oppressed with guilt; but in Christ you will see him who bare your sins in his body on the tree, You have no merits, no righteousness of your own, to plead with God; but you
will behold Him who fulfilled the law in your stead, and by whose obedience many are made righteous. You
in spirit ; you are conscious that you are weak, dependent creatures ; that you
have no claim even to the most or
dinary blessings of life ; but in Christ you see the heir of all things, out of whose fulness you may hope to receive, and grace
grace. Thus, my friends, you must look to Jesus with an eye of faith, convinced of
lost condition ; that Jesus alone can save you, and that he can save to the uttermost all that come to God through him ; and when you have thus beheld in Jesus every thing that could be desired of a Saviour,—when you see that he is the very person
your condition requires, then will you fly, with eagerness, to the hope set before you,then will you exclaim, with the Apostle Thomas, 6 My Lord and my God!"This leads me to shew, in the
Second place, That we must look to Christ with eager desire of relief.
The Lord Jesus is styled 66 the desire “ of all nations.” He is just what a guilty, condemned, perishing world required. And when God, by his prophets, gave men some faint hopes of such a Saviour, with what eagerness did they look forward to that happy period ! Abraham longed earnestly to see the
day of Christ, and “ he saw it afar off “ and was glad.” “ I know,” saith Job, “ that my Redeemer liveth, and that he “ will stand at the latter day on the “ earth.” “ I will lift up my eyes,” saith the Psalmist, “ to the hills, from whence “ cometh my help.” Thus did the men of old look forward with eager desire to the coming of the promised Messiah. But we, my brethren, have seen his day. To us he has been more clearly and fully exhibited. Can we then pretend to believe in Jesus, and yet behold him with indifference? Will the man who is on the point of sinking in the waves, behold with indifference the boat that comes to his relief? Will the criminal who has been sentenced to death, and who trembles at the approach of the destined fatal hour, look with indifference to the Prince from whom he expects a pardon ? These, Christians, are faint, but they are apt comparisons ; they shew the absurdity of pretending to believe in Jesus, and yet not looking to him with the strongest emotions of desire and hope. Only conceive the situation of man by nature : Convicted of transgressing the divine