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■ these things, •* Blessed are the people that know the joyful found : they shall walk, O Lord, in the light of thy countenance," Psal. lxxxix. 15.
I conclude by reading a portion of scripture to you containing a bundle of necessary duties, both toward yourselves, your minister and elders, and one another, 1 Thess. v. 12. to 28. "And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; and to esteem them very highly in love for their works fake. And be at peace among yourselves. Now we exhort yon, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feeble minded, support the weak, be patient toward all Sien. See that none render evil for evil unto any man: but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves and to all men. Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. Quench not the Spirit. Despise not prophecyings. Prove all things: hold fast that which is good. Abstain from all appearance of evil. And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly: and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.—Brethren, pray for us.—The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you." Amen.
r?AL. cxxxii. 17.—I have ordained a lamp for mine Anointed.
THE SECOND SERMON ON THIS TEXT.
PROCEED now to make some further improvement of the
doctrine. A third use of the doctrine may be by way of Trial and Examination. Sirs, we in this land, and you particularly in this place, have had the gospel-lamp for a long time shining among you : but the great question is, Has ever the light of u led you to God's Anointed, and discovered his glory to vour fouls. J
I offer the few following marks for trial in this matter.
his errors ?" Psal. xix. 12. or with Jeremiah, '* The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked, who can know it.'" Jer. xvii. 9. Whenever Job's eyes saw the Lord, he cries, " I abhor myself, and repent in dust and in ashes*
2. The light of the gospel-lamp lets a man fee that all the ways and methods of salvation that he hath proposed unto himself, while in a natural state, are nothing but a mere delusion. The man was imagining, that he might be saved by the general mercy of God, by the works of the law, by a profession of religion, or some good thing or other: but whenever the light of this lamp enters into his heart he fees that it is in vain to look to these hills and mountains ; and that to stay where he it or has been, he but walks in the light of his sire, and sparks of his own kindling, and must lie down in sorrow at the end; and therefore casts away all these cob-web coverings, and accounts them but loss for Christ.
3.1 alt you, What think you of God's Anointed? for the gospel-lamp i* ordained to discover the glory of God's. Anointed. What think you of his person, righteousness, fulness, glory, and salvation, love and grace? 1 am sure the glory of his person and mediation has put your souls to an everlasting stand, that you know not what to fay or think, but are swallowed up in a silent wonder at him, crying with the church, "Who is this that cometh up from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah ? this that is glorious in his apparal, travelling in the greatness of his strength? Wherefore art thou red in thine apparel, and thy garments like him that treadeth in the wine tat i" If. lxiii. 1. 2.
4. If ever the glory of God's Anointed was discovered unto you in the light of this lamp, your hearts have been sired with love to him, and zeal for his glory ; so that you know not how to express your esteem of him, and desire after him: Oh! •* Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire besides thee." Many waters cannot quench love, neither can all floods drown it. Indeed the devil, and the world, and a corrupt heart, are frequently casting water upon this fire; but yet where it is genuine, it gets ay up again; the flame rises, and breaks through all opposition, and fends the sparks of it heavenward.
5. Has ever the lamp of the gospel dropt some of the oil of God's Anointed upon your fouls? The gospel is as it were a golden pipe, through which the oil of the Holy Ghost is conveyed into the vessels of the sanctuary from God's Anointed: Gal. iii. 2. " We receive the Spirit by the hearing of faith, not by the works of the law." Now, I ask you, Have you got an unction from the Holy One 1 Query, How shall 1 know
that? that? Anfw. In the following particulars. This oil has had the fame effect, in some measure, that it had upon Christ. As,
'if}, Christ's anointing, it made him of quid understanding, or of a ready scent, as it is in the margin, if. xi. 3. The fame effects, in some measure, has it had upon you; it has given you a quick understanding and uptaking of the things of God, the secrets of his covenant: "Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven," fays Christ unto his disciples; " but unto others it is not given. We have an unction from the Holy One, whereby we know all things," 1 John ii. 20. "He that is spiritual, judgeth all things:" he has another discerning than other men have of the things of God and eternity. "We have not received the spirit of thia world, but the Spirit which is of God; that we may know the things that are freely given to us of God," 1 Cor. ii. 12.
idly, Christ's anointing made his face to shine. "Oil mi* keth the face to shine." Hence the spouse cries out, " His countenance is as Lebanon, excellent as the cedars." So if you have shared of this anointing, you will, in your way, and walk, and talk, adorn the doctrine of God your Saviour; you will be changed into the fame image with God's Anointed, by beholding of his glory -, your light will shine before men, so that others, seeing your good works, will glorify God, your heavenly Father.
3<//y, Christ's anointing made him active and agile in the work of our redemption; so that he never rested till he could say, "It is finished." So if you be partakers of his anointing, you will be active and diligent in the great work of your salvation, that you may finish your course with joy. Oh! says David, *« I will run the way of thy commandments, when thou hast enlarged my heart," viz. by anointing the wheels of his foul with the oil of the Spirit's influences.
4/Z7y, Christ's anointing made his hear: glad; therefore called "the oil of gladness." This was it that rejoiced his heart under all the discouragement and opposition he met with in his work. So, if you be anointed with the fame oil J your hearts have been made glad therewith. The Holy Ghof is called frequently the Comforter, because he gladdens th« hearts of Christ's followers, under all the troubles and trials in their way in this weary wilderness. Hence Christ fays t« his disciples, speaking of the Spirit, "Your hearts shall reJ joiee, and your joy no man taketh from you." Now, trj y out selves by this; know you any thing of the consolation o^ the Spirit? Oh 1 says David, " thou hast put more glac
ntss in my heart, than they, when their corn, wine, and oil, did abound."
Use fourth, Has God ordained a lamp for his Anointed? then my first advice or exhortation is, to answer the end of the gospel-lamp, by coming to God's anointed Saviour -and Redeemer by a true faith. This is the end and design o! God in the whole revelation that he has made of Christ in thj wotd. "These things are written, that ye might believe in the name of the Son of God, and that believing ye might have life through him," John xx. 31. This is the end and design of a gospel ministry, and of all the ordinances of the gospel, that ye might behold the glory of God's Anointed, and by coming to him, ye might be built up in the holy faith.
Motives to engage you to come unto God's Anointed.
1. The light of the lamp of the gospel points you directly to him; for it is "Christ whom we preach; and we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your servants for Jesus fake." Every gospel-sermon leads to Christ, and lands you in him, if the design of it be answered. Oh! says Paul to the Corinthians, " I desire to know nothing among you, but Christ, and him crucified."
2. Christ was anointed for your fakes. "He received gifts for men; yea, even for the rebellious, that the Lord God might dwell among us." His oil is for your use. He himself, and all his offices to which he was anointed, are intended for the salvation of lost sinners of Adam's family. Why was he anointed to be a Prophet, but for your illumination in the knowledge of God and his will? Why anointed to be a Priest, but for your reconciliation with God, and justification before him? Why anointed King in Zion, but to deliver us from our captivity to sin and Satan, and to sanctify us, and wrkehis law in our hearts? Hence he is " made of God unto us ■wisdom, righteousness, sanctisication, and redemption," 1 Cor. 1.30. Now, seeing it is so, why then should we stand off from him by unbelief, and, by following lying vanities, forsake our own mercy?
3. Oh come unto God's Anointed through the light of the golpel-lamp; for there is an immeasurable measure of the oil of the Holy Ghost with God's Anointed, and all to be communicated unto them that come unto him. "It hath pleased the Father, that in him fliould all fulness dwell; that out of his fulness we might receive grace for grace." There is no fear of want here. His fulness is not exhausted or diminished by all that is given out. No, he is as full as ever, and as ready to communicate. We read of the widow's pot of oil, 2 Kings iv. 4. 5. Sec. that did fill all the vessels that were
Vox, III. E brought
brought to it, and never stopt till no more veflehs were brougbt. This is the cafe here; Christ never ceases to communicate ot his grace and Spirit, as long as empty vessels are brought to him. The only thing that stops the communication ot nis grace is, that we do not come to him by faith to receive ot his fulness.
4. God's Anointed calls, invites, and beseeches you to come unto him for his grace and fulness. "Ho, every one that thirsteth, come •, and he that hath no money, let him come, and buy wine and milk without money and without price,
If. lv. f.—3. „ _
c. God's Anointed has promised you welcome; Lome to me who will, I will in no wise cast out. He that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me (hall never thirst. He Dtissitth the longing soul, and sillcth the hungry soul with good thing?."'
6. Is you do net come to God's Anointed, you lose the benefit of the gofpel-1 imp, and incur the displeasure of that God who ordained the lamp for his Anointed. "This is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men choose darkness rather than light, because their deeds are evil. How shall we escape, if we ntglcct the great salvation" of God's Anointed?
7. Unless you come to God's Anointed, and buy oil, your vessels and lamps will be found empty at the coming of Christ. My friends, before :t be long, the midnight cry (hall be heard, «* Behold, th-Bridegroom cometh, go ye forth to meet him." You know what became of the foolish virgins that wanted oil at the coming of the Bridegroom; they go to fetk oil when it was out of time ; u the door is sliut" upon them, and they are shut up in eternal wo and darkness. Oh take care that it do not fare so with you against the coming of Christ at death, or judgement.' And, therefore, while the market of gTace lasts, take Christ's counsel, " I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thru mayst be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayst be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eves with eyesalve, that thou mayst see," Rev. iii. 18,
8. When a people privileged with the lamp of the everlasting gospel, do not answer the design of it by coming to God's Ano.nted, God in that case u provoked to' remove the lamp, and give it to others that will improve the light of it to a better use: Matth. sxi. 4V « Therefore fav I unto you, The kingdom of God (hall be taken frem vou.'and given to a nation hrn-.gmp lorth the fruits thereof,"' seTs Christ theie onto the Jew*. By the kingdom of God there, we are to understand