« AnteriorContinuar »
the heart, it rapidly spreads its power through the human frame. Every virtuous principle became corrupted; man was wholly debased and polluted with this deadly evil. In vain, then, is Christ exhibited on the cross ;-in vain does he inyite șinners to look to him that they may be saved, unless by his spirit he opens their eyes and directs them to himself. Though I have explained in what manner a believer must look to Jesus in order to be saved, I must now obserye, that divine grace alone can enable him to do this. He must look to Jesus with an eye of faith ; and though“ faith cometh by hearming, and hearing by the word of God," yet it is only produced in the heart by the influence of the Spirit accompanying the word. “ By grace are ye saved “ through faith, and that not of your“ selves; it is the gift of God.” Again, we must look to Christ with eager desires of relief. But “no man can come to Christ except the Father draw him." We must look unto Jesus with admiration, love, and joy ; but these are all fruits of the Spirit. We must look to Christ and follow him as our forerunner; but this
we cannot do, unless by the Spirit of God we are strengthened with all might in the inner man ; and being regenerated by grace, are “ dead unto sin, and alive “ unto righteousness.” Hence the man who would look to Jesus and be saved, must.“ ask wisdom of God, who giveth liberally unto all, and upbraideth not."
But how shall guilty man approach the footstool of a thrice holy God ? How shall he, who has abused the common bounties of Providence, apply to a just God for other and higher blessings ? Would not the spirit of man fail before him, and the souls whom he hath made ? But he has a High Priest that is touched with a fellow feeling of his infirmities. To Jesus, therefore, he must look as his intercessor, by whom he is encouraged to come to the throne of mercy. He must consider himself as one, who “ is
poor, blind, and naked ;” who has forfeited his title to every blessing, temporal and spiritual, and whose hope and confidence must rest solely on the merits of a crucified Saviour. The believer asks nothing for his own sake: He looks to Jesus for every thing pertaining to
life or to godliness. Even when he prays for his dạily food, he looks to him as his intercessor, through whose me diation alone he expects to be heard. Surrounded with spiritual enemies, and conscious of his own weakness, he looks up with confidence to the Captain of his salvation. It was such a look as this, that good Jehosaphat, when beset by his enemies, raised to the Lord of Heaven: 66 We have no might against this great
company that cometh against us ; nei“ ther know we what to do; but our eyes “ are upon thee.” And when the Christian falls, for fall he must in this imperfect state, to whom can he look but unto Jesus ? His well-known gentleness and condescension can alone revive and encourage him to proceed in his heavenly course. And conscious of his own weakness and imperfections, he looks ever with an eye of supplication and dependence upon Him, “ who giveth power to “ the faint, and to them who have no
might increaseth strength.” “ Though “ the youths shall faint and be weary,
and “ the young men shall utterly fail, yet
they that wait upon the Lord shall re
" new their strength; they shall mount
up on wings as eagles; they shall run “ and not be weary; they shall walk and
not be faint." They, and they only who thus look to Christ shall be saved. It is they only whose lives are hid with Christ in God, who, when he appears, shall also
with him in glory.
ON LOOKING UNTO CHRIST.
ISAIAH XLV. 22.
Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth.
In discoursing formerly from these words, it was proposed to shew, first, In what manner we ought to look to Jesus Christ; and, second, To mention some considerations to enforce the duty enjoined in the text.
Having illustrated the manner of looking to Christ, I come now, under the second general head, to mention some considerations to enforce the duty of looking to him.
Consider, first, Who is the glorious object to which you are required to look.