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the beginning. Of this extraordinary influence I will at the foot of the page, give you a few references, to which you can resort at your leisure. *
To all persons who were the objects of this extraordinary influence, the Holy Ghost gave power by measure, according to the necessity of the occasion, but we find the prophet Isaiah predicting that the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord, should rest upon one in an unmeasured degree : acccordingly when John baptist saw the Holy Ghost descending in a bodily shape upon Jesus, and heard a voice from heaven, saying, “ Thou art my beloved Son,” he declared Him to be the Christ. And in the synagogue at Nazareth, Jesus applied to Himself the above cited words of the prophet, and said, “ The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, this day is the Scripture fulfilled in your ears.”I
We now behold these two divine persons of the Godhead jointly engaged in the work of our
* Ex. xxv. 30–34. Ibid. xxxvi. 1. Ibid. xxxix. 43. Numb. xi. xxiv. and xxvii. Deut. xxxiv. 9. Josh. vi. 27. Ezr. i. 1—3. and v. 1. Hag. i. and ii. Zech. iv.; also the histories of Sampson, the Judges, Saul and David, and Solomon, and the prophets. Also Matt. vii. 21-23. and 1 Cor. xiii. + Is. lyi.
† Luke iv. 18 and 21,
redemption. The Holy Ghost was given to Christ without measure; whence He baptised and wrought miracles. But the most striking, as well as the most valuable of their operations, if we can conceive degrees of supernatural power, and calculate the value of divine mercies, was in the sacrifice of Christ as a sin-offering, when He became, at the same time, accursed * as the sin which He was expiating, and the spotless and blameless sacrifice † of that expiation, and was offered through the eternal Spirit to God.
The primary object of the old covenant being accomplished in the offering of Christ, we now find the succeeding operations of the Holy Ghost directed to the establishment of His settled and ordinary influence, under the new covenant. For this purpose a way was to be opened, the world was to be prepared, the Apostles inspired to write the Gospel, and that Gospel published to the world.
I am, &c.
* Deut. xx, 28.
+ Heb. ix.
Ar the death of our blessed Redeemer, the Spirit was not yet given *: and Peter and other of the disciples were so little informed of the part which they were chosen to sustain, that they returned to their occupations as fisherment, whence they were again called by their divine Master previous to His ascension, and promised the baptism of the Holy Ghost within a few days. I On the day of Pentecost that promise was fulfilled S; and that out-pouring of the Spirit commenced, which laid the foundation of the church of Christ upon the “ Rock of ages," against which the gates of hell shall not prevail. Let me beg of you an attentive perusal of the book of the Acts of the Apostles, in which you will meet with a full and most pleasing account of the extraordinary powers delegated to the Apostles, for the great and glorious work to which they were called, in the preaching of the Word, and the conversion of
* John xvi. 26.
† Ib. xxi. 2, 3. § Ib. ii,
† Acts i.