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this holy man. But he shall awake by and by in the likeness of his Saviour. .At present he is by faith united to Christ; and is one Spirit with him ; a member of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones *." In law and justice he is one with him; redeemed from the curse by his surety, who bore the curse for him ; and, in the Redeemer, made the righteousness of Godt. His union with him is compared constantly, in Scripture, to that of a wife with an husband. How glorious will then his state be, when he shall “ see face to face $;" when the vail shall be removed; when his likeness to his Saviour shall be complete ; when an intimate communion with him shall be carried on for ever, without cloud, without impediment. Certainly he will “ be SATISFIED;" he will behold the glory; admire the perfections; be ravished with the grace, and enjoy the goodness, of his Saviour for ever. All will be love, and joy, and peace; and no more sorrow, darkness, temptation, or pain. If, even now on earth, though not seeing his Saviour, he loves him, and rejoices with joy unspeakable and full of glory, what will that joy be in heaven ?
Here then, I dare lay down one of the most certain proofs of a real Christian. Though his frame be not always as it should be ;-far from it, -yet the new nature works in him constantly in the manner which I have been describing. And the grievous affliction, which he often feels on account of his sinful propensities, proves that his relish for holiness and for heaven lives in him in the midst of his failings and infirmities. A man may delude * Ephes. V. 30.
+ 2 Cor. v. 21. f 1 Cor. xüi. 12.
himself with foolish raptures, and ungrounded fancies and presumptions; at the same time that the general course of his practice proves him a worldly man after all; at the same time that his pride, and selfishness, and deceit, thrive and domineer.--But where a divine principle prevails indeed, there is this spiritual, this heavenly taste : And it is the source of the purest pleasures which, in this world, are to be known. Whoever has the least portion of it, will despise and yet tenderly pity the condition of those who are looking for happiness from the things of this world.
This it is to pant after God, as the hart panteth after the water-brooks, by an appetite, natural indeed, but belonging to the new, not the old nature; an appetite not always equally keen, but always in existence, and always productive of prayer, and of a course of conduct quite opposite to any thing worldly. The love of Jesus is the pleasant theme of the new man, who never fails to feel his spirit united to those who love that precious name* ; who never fails to
grace may be with all them who love the Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity.
Enough has now been said to point out the two characters. The marks by which men may know themselves are very plain. Christian, is it not thus with thee? I allow, however, that if thou art a real Christian, thou thyself wilt be one of the last who can see the proofs of thy own blessed state.— But 'what mean the restlessness of mind after Christ; * Matt. i. 21.
Thou shalt call his name Jesus; for he shall save his people from their sins.
the groaning in spirit, the earnest longings after Heaven, from time to time; the constant craving after spiritual pleasure and joy? Surely these affections are not from nature. They are of grace. Be assured, that as you dread sin above all things, it shall never be your ruin. As you love God in Christ above all things, you shall, after having cheerfully taken up and patiently borne your cross, enjoy communion with him for evermore.
I exhort all persons, who feel that they have no such desires and affections, but rather an aversion and disgust to them, not to deceive themselves with fancying their state to be good, when conscience tells them the contrary; when conscience tells them, that all their sensations of joy are of a worldly nature. But remember, what divine grace can still do for you; and, with a docile temper of mind, observe what it has done for those, whose dispositions are now spiritual. Their hearts were once like yours: Seek God, in Christ, for
yours may become as theirs.
66 The Lord's hand is not shortened that it cannot save *.” If you perish, you are your own destroyer; you perish through your own obduracy and impenitence.
Let the great difference between both the character and the doom of these two sorts of persons, engage the serious thoughts of all that are here
present. We are each of us either in the one class, or in the other. We are either vessels of honour, under preparation for a happy eternity, or vessels of wrath fitting for destruction t: If we be not found to be Christ's at his coming, we shall be found to * Isai. lix. 1.
# Rom. ix. 22, 23.
belong to the world ; and the description of the world is that it lieth in wickedness *. If we rise not to glory in our Saviour's likeness, we shall “rise to shame and everlasting contempt t.” May the Lord give us all grace to choose the good part, while it is in our power, that we may not be confounded in the day of his appearing.
* 1 John, v. 19.
+ Dan. xii. 2.
THE BRAZEN SERPENT.
John, iii. 14, 15.
And as Moses lifted up the Serpent in the wilderness,
even so must the Son of Man be lifted up: that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
Precious declaration! most comfortable display of divine love! May that same Spirit of the blessed Jesus, who spake these words, be with you and me in considering them, that we may find them to be spirit and life to our souls !
To illustrate the words of the Text, it will be necessary to lay open the emblem of the Serpent. There is, I know, in these days of refinement, a great prejudice in men's minds against types, emblems, parables, and figures, and every thing of the metaphorical kind. We suppose that we have made great improvement in the art and power of reasoning; and we would have every subject laid before us in the strictest mode of ratiocination, and argument. I am persuaded that a great part of the enmity and disgust, which persons of breeding and education have against the Scripture, arises from this circumstance. Men would bring every thing to the bar of human reason : They forget, that, in spiritual