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their birth, of their riches, of their honours, of those trifling distinctions by which God has placed them a few steps higher in mere worldly circumstances than some of their fellow creatures, and treat with contempt any of those for whose sake Christ, though “in the form of God, and thinking it not robbery to be equal with God, yet took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of man, and being found in fashion as a man, humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross ?” Know Christ, and know yourselves, and you will find cause enough for humility; you cannot display greater ignorance of both than by pride. Consider his unbounded Charity; that exceeding love for an unworthy world which brought him down from Heaven; his unwearied activity in going about for the sole purpose of doing good to the bodies and souls of men; his forgiveness of all injuries ; his prayers, even for his enemies and murderers. You know not what spirit you are of when you are angry, revengeful, envious, injurious, ready, not merely to resent an affront, but even to offer one to an unoffending brother. It is not the spirit of Christ, and he who “hath not his spirit is none of his.”
But it is not enough simply to be free from this evil disposition ; you have no know
ledge of Christ, if you do not really and sincerely love your fellow-creatures, and show it by doing them good, by kindness, by active exertions in their behalf, by relieving them in their distresses, by devoting a considerable portion of your time, your power, your wealth, to the promotion of their happiness. Profess not the knowledge of Christ, if you have a narrow, selfish heart; there is no room for it there. See again how wholly intent He was upon that one purpose for which He came into the world. As a child, He said, “wist ye not that I must be about my
Father's business ? ” and afterwards, “I must work the work of him that sent me while it is day, the night cometh, when no man can work." My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.” My meat and my drink is to do the will of my Father which is in heaven.” And shall men employ themselves about every thing except that which is the very end and object of their existence, the service of God and the attainment of eternal life? Shall every vain and idle pursuit, shall the cares and distractions of worldly business, shall the pleasures and dissipations of earthly enjoyments, so occupy them that they shall have no time or inclination for that great work, to which every thing else ought to give way, or be made to minister?
Oh you will lose
all your labour, you will spend your time and strength "upon that which satisfieth not,” if you do not know Christ better than this.
Lastly, observe Him in prayer; how frequent, how earnest, how devout! Take a lesson from this, all ye who neglect that secret communion with God, without which no spiritual life or strength can be preserved in your souls. All ye who are formal, cold, remiss in devotion! You cannot conquer yourselves, the world, or the devil, without prayer; you cannot lead a Christian life upon earth; without prayer you cannot ascend to Heaven hereafter; all depends upon prayer; faith, hope, charity, holiness, the love of God, strength, comfort, knowledge, perseverance, salvation, all are given to prayer, all are denied to those who
I have detained you long, and yet I have been compelled to be brief in my description of the character of Christ, and to omit many particulars in his life, most worthy of imitation by all who profess themselves his disciples. Search the sacred Scriptures attentively and frequently, with prayer for God's blessing upon your study of them, and may you so know Him thoroughly, and by the power of the Holy Spirit be conformed to his image, and follow his steps in all things! May you
May you “grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! May you "count all things but loss for the excellency of that knowledge !” And “I pray
and desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of God's will in all wisdom, and spiritual understanding; that ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering, with joyfulness, giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light.”.
And may God, of his infinite mercy, hasten that glorious day, when men shall no longer “ teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, know ye the Lord, but when all shall know Him, from the least to the greatest," so that he may fulfil his gracious promise, “I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities I will remember no more." 2 Amen.
1 Col. i, 9, &c.
% Heb, viii, 11, 12.
THE DIVINITY OF CHRIST.
1 COR. viii. 5, 6. For though there be that are called Gods, whether in heaven, or in earth, (as there be gods many, and
But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him ; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we in him.
It is clear from the argument pursued in this chapter, that St. Paul had been consulted by his Corinthian converts on the question, whether it was lawful for them to eat the flesh of those animals, which the heathens had offered as sacrifices to their false Gods. The doubt with them was, whether in so doing, they would not seem to connive at, and to sanction this idolatrous worship. In this, and in another place, where he