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ours of an angry people, he is com- His feet, and challenges Justice to bring pelled to write, " This is Jesus, the anything against the sinners whom He King of the Jews ;” and he gives Him represents; He pleadis His blood, and up to die as a malefactor who has pleads so triumphantly, being numrebelled against the sovereign law of bered with them and having a part the land. Herod, too, the Jewish with them, that the judge proclaims, tetrarch, confirms the sentence, an:) “Let them go their way; deliver thein so, with two pens at once, Jesus Christ from going down into the pit, for He is written down by the civil leaders at their head hath found a ransom." among transgressors.
(2.) That He might plead with them. 4. By the whole Jewish people. Barah. Suppose a number of prisoners conbas is put in competition with Christ, fined in one of our old jails, and there and they say, “Not this man, but is a person desirous to do them good, Barabbas.” His being numbered with imagine that he cannot be admitted transgressors is no fiction. Lo, He unless his name is put down in the bears the transgressor's scourging ! He calendar. Well, ont of his abundant bears the felon's cross. All earth holds love to these prisoners he consents to up its hands for His death; it is car- it, and when he enters to talk with ried unanimously. Of all men is He them, they perhaps think that he will accounted to be the offscouring of all come in with cold dignity; but he things, and is put to grief.
says, “Now, let me say to you first 5. God, the Eternal Judge, shows of all that I am one of yourselves." that He too considers Him to be in “Well,” they say, " but have you done the roll of transgressors, for He veils aught that is wrong?" "I will not His face till Jesus shrieks in agony so answer you that,” saith he; “but if unutterable, that the words cannot you will just refer to the calendar you express the meaning of the Redeemer's will find my name there; I am written soul, “My God," &c. ? The only answer down there among you as a criminal.” from heaven being, “I must forsake Oh, how they open their hearts now! transgressors; thou art numbered with They opened their eyes with wonder them, and therefore I must forsake first, but now they open their hearts, thee.” He dies without a protest on and they say, “ Art thou become like the part of earth, or heaven, or hell; one of us? Then we will talk with He that was numbered with the trans- thee." And he begins to plead with gressors, having worn the transgres- them. Sinner, dost thou see this? sor's crown of thorns, lies in the Christ puts Himself as near on a level trangressor's grave.
with thee as He can. He cannot be Pause here a moment, and think this sinful as thou art, but He so puts His matter over. It is a strange and won- name down in the list that when the derful thing, and ought not to be passed
roll is called His name is called over by in silence. Why, think you, was
with thine. Oh, how near doth He Christ numbered with transgressors? come to thee in thy ruined state ! (1.) Because lle could the better become (3.) That sinners may feel their hearts their advocate. I believe, in legal phrase- drawn to Him. There is a tendency ology, in civil cases, the advocate con- in awakened sinners to be afraid of siders himself to be part and partner Christ; but who will be afraid of a with the person for whom he pleads. man that is numbered with us? Surely You hear the counsellor continually now we may come boldly to Him, and using the word “we;" he is considered confess our guilt. He that is numbered by the judge to represent the person
with us cannot condemn us. for whom he is an advocate. Now, (4.) That we might be written in the Christ, when the sinner is brought to red roll of the saints. He was holy, the bar, appears there Himself. What and written among the holy; we is the accusation? He stands to answer were guilty, and numbered among the it; He points to His side, His hands, guilty; He transfers His name from
yonder list to this black indictment, "But I have been a drunkard !” &c. and ours are taken from the indict- &c. You come in under the list of ment, foul and filthy, and written in sinners, and I say that such Christ the roll which is fair and glorious, for contemplated, and the two sentences there is a transfer made between Christ we have already considered prove this and His people. All that we have to a demonstration. He contemplated goes to Christ; and all that Christ such as you are when He came to save, has comes to lis.
for “He was numbered with transII. CHRIST BARE THE SINS OF gressors," and He “bare”—not the MANY.
virtues, not the merits, not the good 1. Here it is as clear as noon-day, works of many, but “the sin of many." that Christ dealt with sinners. Do So, if you have any sin, here is Christ not say Christ died for those who have the sin-bearer; and if you are a sinner, done no wrong. That is not the de- here is Christ numbered with you. scription given. It is clear to every one III. JESUS INTERCEDES FOR SINthat chooses to look, that Christ could NERS. not bear the sins of those who had no He prays for His saints, but rememsins, but could only bear the sins of ber that by nature they are transgresmen who were sinful and guilty. Their sors, and nothing more. sins were really, not in a legal fiction, 1. There is a transgressor here this but really transferred from them to morning He has been hearing the Him. You see, a man cannot bear a Gospel for many years, &c. I hear a thing which is not on his back; it is voice saying-"Lo, these three years impossible that he can bear it unless
I come seeking fruit,” &c. The woodit is actually there. The word “bear" man feels his axe; it is sharp and keen. implies weight, and weight is the sure “Now,” says he, “I will lay to at this indicator of reality. Christ did bear barren tree, and cut it down.” Bit sin in its fulness, vileness, and con- hark! There is One that maketh indemnation upon His own shoulders. tercession for transgressors, hear Him, Comprehend this, then, and you have “Spare it yet a little while, till I dig the marrow of the subject.
about it and dung it,” &c. Bless God 2. Then notice, that as He did bear that Christ pleads for you in that way. them, so other texts tell us that He 2. But that done, He pleads for their did bear them away (John. i. 29). Sin forgiveness. “Father, forgive them,” &c. being on His head, the scapegoat took It is this that breaks a man's heart; it away. Where? Into the wilderness to think that Christ should have been of forgetfulness. If it be sought for loving me, with the whole force of His it shall not be found ; the Everlasting soul, while I was despising Him, and God seeth it no more, it hath ceased would have nothing to do with Him. to be, for He hath finished iniquity 3. He next prays that those for and made an end of sin; and when whom He intercedes may be saved, and there is an end of it what more can may have a new life given them. Every be said?
soul that is quickened by the Holy 3. There is now no sin abiding upon Spirit is so quickened as the result those for whom Jesus died. " And who of His intercession for transgressors. are they?" you say. Why all those His prayer brings down the life, and who trust Him. Are you a sinner ? dead sinners live. When they live Yes or no.
If you say "No," then I He does not cease to pray for them, have nothing to say to you; Christ for by His intercession they are precame not to call the righteous, but served. And more, our coming to sinners to repentance. If you are a glory is the result of the pleading of sinner, to you is the word of this Christ for transgressors (John. xvii
. salvation sent.
“ But I have been a 24).-C. H. Spurgeon: Metropolitan thief !” I suppose a thief is a sinner? Tabernacle Pulpit, No. 458.
THE ASTONISHING INCREASE OF THE CHURCH.
(Missionary Sermon). liv. 1-3. Sing, O barren, thou that didst not bear, dc. Vast accessions to the Church are the Church. How wonderful are these here predicted. Consider
records ofevangelistic triumph. Modern I. The comparative sterility of the Christian missions not a failure, as some Jewish Church.
have the audacity to say. Their success The union between God and His far exceeds the most sanguine expectapeople is often compared to that tions of their founders. There are more beiween husband and wife (ch. 5; conversions in heathen countries in the lxii. 5; Rev. xxi. 2-9; xxii. 17). present day, in proportion to the numThe Church is here represented with- ber of preachers, than there are at out inherent strength, apparently for- home. 1. What hath God wrought !”. saken by God her head and hus- 2. The full accomplishment of this band, and therefore destitute of spiri- prediction is yet fulure. The Church tual children (Gal. iv. 22). Compara- is as yet upon the threshold of mistively few real believers—children of sionary triumphs, and with but few God and the Church-had been raised exceptions is still doing preliininary up within the narrow limits of the work. All that has been done is only nation. And when the Messiah came, like a few stepping-stones towards the formalism, scepticism, and open im- citadel that remains to be taken. But piety had become almost universal, the accomplishment of the prediction which caused the small remnant of is certain, because it is the revealed the faithful to mourn for Zion. But purpose of God. All difficulties shall better times would be introduced by be surmounted (Gal. iii. 29, and others). the advent of Christ, and the accom- The Gospel shall spread with surprising plishment of His redemptive work. rapidity—“shall break forth," as the St. Paul contrasts the universal Church breaking forth of waters, "on the right of the New Testament, with the Church and on the left”-on every side, and of the Old Testament legal dispensa- into every land, until the now destitute tion, quoting this very passage (Gal. world is replenished with the adopted iv. 27; Eph. iii. 5-8).
and rejoicing children of God (ver. 3; II. The surprising increase of the
xlix. 19, 20). Christian Church.
3. With such a prospect, necessary pre1. Increase surpassing all experience, parutions must be made (ver. 2 ; xlix. hope, faith. The Jews, with compara- 19, 20, &c.). The boundaries of the tively few exceptions, “despised and Church must be greatly enlarged to rejected” the Saviour, and were cast accommodate the vast accessions, nor off, but numerous children were born need she fear making too large preinto the Church. The Gentile con- parations (ver. 3; Zech. viii. 20–23; verts were adopted into her family, Mal. i. 9-11) (a). and those nations which had been III. The exultant joy at the wholly destitute of Church privi. astonishing increase. Common to leges —" strangers to the covenants Isaiah to interpose a song of praise of promise”-produced a far larger on the announcement of any great increase of true believers than the and glorious truth (ch. xii. 5, 6; xlii. nation of Israel, which had been 10, 11; xliv. 23; xlix. 13). The married to the Lord by their national Church is here called on to break out covenant and distinguished advan- into loud and glad exclamations at tages. Pentecost and the Acts of the the remarkable accession. Apostles—the first missionary record of 1. The joy of individual believers. Nothing so adapted to gladden the children of God, born from above, heart as the extension of the Re- &c? Accept Christ as your Saviour, deemer's kingdom. For every subject and yield yourselves to His blessed of saving grace is not only blessed in service, &c. (Ps. lxxvii. 1, 2). — A. himself, but he is made a blessing to Tucker. others, and thus God's glory and the world's happiness are promoted.
(a) This text has an interesting history as
the subject of Carey's memorable sermon, the 2. The joy of the family. Nothing preaching of which, at Nottingham, in June conduces so much to make our homes 1792, may be affirmed, without extravagance, and households glad as the salvation to bave marked an epoch in the history of
modern missions. of the family circle. It heals their
After observing that the
Church was, in these words, compared to some strifes, soothes their sorrows, &c.
poor, desolato widow who lived alone in a 3. The joy of the collective Church. small tent, that she who thus lived in a manNothing so adapted to make a people ner forlorn and childless, was told to expect happy (Acts viii . 8; xv. 3). The
such an increase in her family as would require
a much larger dwelling, and this because her object of Christ's mission, and the Maker was her husband whose name was not Church's labours and prayers, are real- only the Lord of Hosts and the Holy one of ised, &c.
Israel, but the God of the whole earth, he CONCLUSION.-1. The gradual de
proceeded to bring out the spirit of the pas. velopment of God's purposes may well
sage in two memorable exhortations-1. Ex
pect great things from God. 2. Atteinpt great rebuke our impatience as to missionary things for God. In private conference with success. We are most imperfect judges his brethren immediately afterwards, Carey of what constitutes success. 2. Our
formally laid bimself on the missionary altar,
enying to Pearce and Fuller in those immortal own position and duty. Be incited to
words, 'I will go down into the pit, if you activity in the Redeemer's cause--seek will hold the ropes ;' and so was formed the in order to save the lost, &c. Let Baptist Missionary Society, and a mightier your gifts cease to be patronage, and impulse given to missionary zeal all over the become sacrifice, &c.
world.-W. Guthrie, M.A.
3. Are you
THE AGGRESSIVE POWER OF CHRISTIANITY.
liv. 2, 3. Enlarge the place of thy tent, &c. It is pre-eminently by aggressive nearest approaches to God, he will movements that the Church is to pros- find his impulses to religious effort per—to maintain her spiritual life and strongest. cause religion to flourish at home, and II. THE FACT THAT TRUTH IS THE extend its triumphs abroail. The truth GRAND INSTRUMENT WHICH GOD EMof this doctrine is suggested by
PLOYS TO OVERTHROW THE KINGDOM I. THE FIRST IMPULSES OF THE RE- OF SATAN, AND ADVANCE AND ESTABLIGIOUS PRINCIPLE, THE SPIRIT OF LISH THE KINGDOM OF His Son. The LOVE IN EVERY CHRISTIAN'S BOSOM. Word of God must not only be transThis is strikingly exhibited in young lated into all the languages of the converts. It is illustrated with great earth, but it must be carried to every beauty in the conduct of Christ's man's door; nay, its great truths must earliest disciples. True religion is the be pressed home upon every man's spirit of Christ. Its language is, “some- conscience. What a mighty work here thing must be done,” &c. It conceives opens for Christians of every name ! plans, it demands efforts, for the world's III. THE VERY ATTITUDE OF A conversion. Every real Christian that FALLEN WORLD TOWARD GOD. It is lives iv the spirit of religion may con- one of hostility to His character and sult his own consciousuess on this sub- opposition to His truth (John iii. 19, ject. In his most favoured hours and 20). The world will not come to the Church and crave instruction at her even in Israel, except as the servants lips. As her Saviour sought her, so of the Lord made specific movements He requires her to seek sinners. She for this purpose. If this aspect of must make external and aggressive things strikes us in the Old Testament movements--must not study so much dispensation, how much more in that her own comfort as her enlargement. of the New? Mark how faithfully the And this general rule of duty for the first preachers of the Gospel carried Church as a bowly applies to each out their Divine commission. Turn member of the Church individually. to a still later page in the history of So Christ teaches.
the Church. How was it at the ReforIV. THE WHOLE CURRENT OF SCRIP- mation? When Whitfield and Wesley TURE PRECEPT AND REPRESENTATION. appeared? Just in proportion as any The Bible never instructs the Church Church, in the spirit of Christ, attempts that she is to conquer the world by spiritual aggression, in the same proher passive virtues, nor by any means portion its interests are smiled upon which aim chiefly at conservation rather and prospered. than aggression (Matt. xxviii, 18, 19, REMARKS:41. We see why the Church and others).
is organised. Pre-eminently, with a V. THE ENTIRE HISTORY OF THE view to united and powerful external GOSPEL When has any signal ad- action. 2. The grand object of all preachvance been made in the work of ing. The conversion of sinners. 3. human salvation, except by a move- This subject throws light upon the proment similar to that described in the vidences of God towards the Church. text? Christ's great redeeming enter- Now, as in former days, He allows prise—what was it but one of aggres- heresies, persecutions, schisms, and sion ? His was a missionary career: various forms of affliction, from time “He went about doing good.” The to time, to invade the Church, thereMosaic institution was peculiar. It by quickening our love for Christ and was conservative rather than aggres- for souls. — ), H. Linsley, D.D.: The sive. Still, it was true then as now, Preacher's Treasury, part iii., p. 55, that religion made no decided progress, &c.
CHEER FOR THE CHURCH. liv. 4, 5. Fear not ...,
Fear not ... for thy Maker is thine husband, fc. I. THE ENCOURAGEMENT TO BE DE- 27). A relation that cannot be broken RIVED FROM THE POWER AND GRACE - all others may (ch. I. 1; Hos. ii. 17, OF THE GREAT HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 20). 3. Thy Redeemer—therefore trust
Here is the happy union of opposite Him (Job. xix. 25; Gal. iv. 4, 5). attributes—the union of Majesty and Christ became a member of the human Mercy, of the utmost grandeur and family, and stood forth as our near the utmost tenderness, &c. Here kinsman, our Goél, to whom the right are certain relations specified, “thy of inheritance belonged. He did not Maker," &c., and the infinite resources refuse the office. Whom God redeems specified by which those relations are He exalts, and restores to all the sustained : “ The Lord of Hosts,” &c. privileges and immunities of which sin
1. Thy Maker—therefore trust Him. had deprived us. God's salvation is God's power as a Creator is adequate every way infinite; the extinction of to all the exigencies in which His an infinite evil, the bestowment of an people can be placed (ch. li. 12, 13; infinite good, &c. 4. The Holy One of xl. 27–29; Job x. 9; xxxv. 10). 2. Israel-therefore trust Him. Every Thy husband—therefore trust Him. A provision is made under the Gospel to title which combines all the charities uphold the obligations of the law, and of all other relationships (Eph. v. 25– to guard the legislative administration