Page images
PDF
EPUB

saye

Let us never question the power or willingness of Christ to

Let us make our way to him through all dificulties and obstructions

Let us stretch out our hands with humble boldness and confidence

Nor doubt but that virtue shall proceed from him to heal our souls-]

CCXCV. JAIRUS 1) AUGHTER HEALED.

Luke viii. 50. When Jesus heard it, he answered him, saying,

Fear not: believe only, and she shall be made whole. AFFLICTIONS may well be deprecated by us as painful to flesh and blood

But they are often the means of humbling us before God

Multitudes came as suppliants to our Lord who would never have regarded him if they had not felt the pressure of disease or trouble

The rich in general were the most backward to acknowledge him

But they found that in the hour of afiliction none other could do them good- Hence occasionally we see the opulent presenting their supplications before him

Nor did he reject the suit of any, whether they were

The answer he gave to a ruler of the synagogue is recorded in the text

And it will naturally lead us to notice the ruler's faith I. How it was tried Jairus (such was his name) had much to try his faith

[He had an only child (twelve years of age) in dying circumstances

Having heard much of our Lord's miracles, he applied to him on behalf of his daughter

And earnestly requested him to come and restore her health

But while he was returning with Jesus to his house, his servants brought tidings that the child was dead

rich or poor

This was a dreadful shock to the parent's feelings-
And might have utterly destroyed all his hopes ]
Thus it is that the faith of God's people is often tried

[They are enabled to make application to their God and Saviour

But the storm in the meantime gathers thick around them

Their difficulties so increase, that their hopes seem almost blasted

They have cried for pardon, and find only an increasing sense of guilt

They have prayed for deliverance from corruption or temptation, and experienced the assaults of Satan more violent than ever

Thus they are almost ready to think that God has cast out their prayer, and shut up his tender mercies from them

It was in this manner that holy Job was tried Yea, the experience of most, however diversified, is generally found to agree in thisă]

But this accumulated trouble was permitted for the further exercise of the ruler's faith II. How it operated

He was enabled humbly and confidently to depend on Jesus

[It was his faith that first led him to Jesus for help Nor, when his case seemed desperate, did he give up his hope

It is probable that our Lord might perceive some rising apprehensions in his mind

But he sustained him instantly with that encouraging word, “ Fear not”

Jairus expected now that his child should be raised as from a sleep

The idea of sleep, however, only called forth the derision of the mourners

Such was the fruit of their ignorance and unbelief

But the ruler himself resembled the father of the faith. fulb] It is in this way that true faith will ever shew itself

(It will surely lead us to Jesus for relief It will make us humble and importunate in our supplications to him

We shall not presently turn from him because our difficul. ties increase

a Ps. cvii. 5, 6, 12, 13, 18, 19, 26, 27, 28. b Rom. iv. 18, 20, 21.

We shall rather adopt the expressions of holy Job

Unbelief may promjt us to deride whit we do not understand

But faith will make is acquiesce in God's declarations, though we cannot fully conprehend them

And expect the accompishment of his promises, however his providence may appearto contradict them-]

Jesus did not fail to repect the faith that honoured him III. How it was rewarded

Jesus answered the rule to the full extent of all his wishes

[Our Lord reproved th excessive lamentations of the people

And encouraged them toexpect the restoration of the child

But he would not suffer tho; who had derided him to be spectators of the miracle.

He took with him, however,ersons sufficient to attest it

He favoured the believing jrents with admission to behold it

And restored their daughter,s it had been from sleep, in their very presence

The child arose instantly, andyalked as in perfect health

For their further conviction hordered food to be given to the child

By this also he intimated, thathough she was restored by a miracle, she was to be kept alivby natural means

What a rich reward was this tche believing suppliant!—} Nor shall any one who asks i faith, be disappointed

[Our Lord has commanded i to ask in faithe And has assured us that petitio, so offered, shall be answered by hime

Things the most impossible to nn, shall, if they will conduce to our good and to God's honcr, be effected by the prayer of faithf_

Crimes the most atrocious that (er were committed, shall be pardoned

Lusts the most inveterate that er enslaved a soul, shall be subduedh

The dead in trespasses and sins all be raised, like Christ himself, to a new and heavenly lifel

Nor shall they fail of attainingeternal happiness in heavenk-]

• Job xiii. 15. Mark xi. 24.
i Mark ix, 23. & Acts xiii. 39.
i Eph. i. 19, 20. with ii. 5, 6.

e Matt. xxi. 22.
h Isai. lix. 19, 1 Cor. vi. il.
k John iii. 15. Isai. xlv. 17.

APPLICATION

[Every man must expect trouble in this valè of tears
The dearest friends must look forward to a day of separa-
tion

But let every trouble drive us to the compassionate Jesus
And every want be spread before him in prayer-

We are not now indeed to ex'ect miraculous interpositions

Nor ought we to ask for temporl blessings in an unqualified manner

We should commit the concers of this life to his all-wise disposal

But for spiritual blessings weannot be too importunate-
Nor can our faith in his worde too strong-
What he said to Martha he sil says to usm.

The advice of Jehosaphat s the best direction we can follow

Let us not then limit his tener mercies
If we resemble the Samaritalord, we shall fare like him.-

Let us not in renewed tribles be like the unbelieving
Jews

But let us bear in mind thancouraging declaration ?
And determine henceforth live like the apostle -]

[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

Matt. ix. 28-30. And wh he was come into the house, the

blind men came to him: d Jesus said unto them, Believe ye that I am able to do this They said unto him, Yea, Lord. Then touched he their ez, saying, According to your faith, be it unto you. And the yes were opened.

WE are so much austomed to read and hear the miracles of our Lord, t the recital of them produces little or no effect-Butad we seen the multitudes of diseased people continu thronging to him, crying after him, and breaking in on his retreats when he was in the houses of his frien, we should have been greatly astonished-In the page before us we have a speci- .

men of their importunity-Two blind men, having in vain supplicated our Lord's assitance in the street, fol. lowed him into an house, and there obtained that relief, which, from prudential considerations perhaps, he had not chosen to impart in the presence of the people

Waving many observations vhich will arise, when another miracle, exactly similar to this, a shall be considered, we shall fix our attention upcn two things, which are very strongly marked in the words before us; 1. The object of faith

The whole sacred volume is to be recieved by us; but God has revealed in it the proper object of our faithHis perfections are the foundation on which we build; and though every perfection is equally an object of our love, yet there seems a propriety in regarding his power as the more immediate object of our faith; because it will be to no purpose to believe him well-disposed towards us, if we do not also believe him able to effect his gracious intentions

[In confirmation of this we may observe, that in the most eminent instances of faith, the power of God has been chiefly regarded

And in the most remarkable instances of unbelief, his power has been principally doubted-----Moreover God in a peculiar manner points out this attribute to our notice, d expostu. lates with us for not attending to it sufficiently, and exhorts us to take it for our strength ---]

The address of our Lord to the two suppliants leads us further to remark

& Matt. xx. 30-34.

b Abraham, whose faith is so highly commended, had respect to the power of God to give him a son in his old age, Rom. iv. 1921. and to raise him up from the dead, Heb. xi. 19. In dependence on this, Jonathan attacked a Philistine garrison, 1 Sam. xiv. 6. Jehosaphat went forth against three confederate armies, 2 Chron. xx. 6, 12. and the Hebrew youths withstood the command of the Babylonish monarch, Dan. iii. 17, 18.

© Sarah questioned the power of God to give her a child, Gen. xviii. 12–14. As did also the Israelites to give them bread and flesh, Ps. lxxviii, 20. Moses himself on one occasion staggered at God's promise, from an apprehension that it could not be performed, Numb. xi. 21, 22. And Martha deemed the putrid state of her brother's corpse an insurmountable bar to his restoration to life, John xi. 39, 40.

& Ps. lxii. 11. e Isai. xl. 28, 29. f Isai. xxyi, 4.

« PreviousContinue »