What feast is this, which the wise man meant, and the wine which, for true mirth, he would here recommend? He could not mean the laughter of the fool for that, he tells us elsewhere (chap. vii. 6.) "is as the crackling of thorns under a pot." The drunkard's song is but the mirth of the moment, which, like the burning thorn, may blaze and flash amidst the midnight crew, but suddenly goeth out, and leaves a total darkness. But if Solomon had an eye to the feast which Jesus hath made in the mountain of the Lord's house "a feast of fat things," where his body broken, and his blood shed, are the food of the table; this indeed is a feast made for real joy of heart, and "wine which cheereth God and man;" Judges ix. 13. When the justice of God drank of this blood of the Lamb, it was satisfied; and when the poor sinner hath tasted of it, his soul is satisfied also. And as "money answereth all things," because all things are procurable by it, so the redemption of Jesus answereth all the wants of a sinner. He is meat to the hungry soul, and drink to the thirsty. He is a garment to the naked, and the medicine of life to the diseased. " I will cause them (saith Jesus) that love me to inherit substance, and I will fill their treasures." Sit down, my soul, this evening, and mark the striking contrast. The pleasures of the carnal are short and unsatisfying; yea, they have nothing more in the enjoyment of them than what is common to the brute that perisheth, and the after effects are all on the side of sorrow. The word of God hath described it in a finished form of misery: "though wickedness be sweet in his mouth; though he hide it under his tongue, though he spare it, and forsake it not, but keep it still within his mouth; yet his meat in his bowels is turned, it is the gall of asps within him," Job xx. 12, 13, 14. What an awful termination to a life of sensuality and carnal pursuits. Sin and folly lead in the front, and misery and sorrow bring up the rear! But in the sweet feast of Jesus, all is joy and peace in the Holy Ghost; and the believer sits down, as under the everlasting smiles of God, hearing and embracing the blessed invitation: "I have gathered my myrrh with my spice, I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey, I have drunk my wine with my milk: eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved!" Blessed Lord! Be it my portion, thus, night by night, and day by day, to hear thy voice, to behold thy countenance! And do thou Lord, come in and sup with me, and cause me to sup with thee, until thou take me home to thine eternal feast above, whence I shall rise no more; where one everlasting banquet will remain, and the redeemed of the Lord will live for ever "in the presence of God and the Lamb!"
From the POOR MAN'S MORNING AND EVENING PORTIONS.
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