"And think not to say within yourselves, we have Abraham to our Father; for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham."Matt. iii. 9.
Precious are the doctrines contained in the bosom of this most blessed scripture! May the almighty Author of his own holy word, open to me, this evening, some of the many divine things contained in it. And first, my soul, remark that the blessing to Abraham and to his seed was not through the law. He is not a jew that is one outwardly. The blood of nature which ran through Abrabam's veins, had no respect to the grace which was planted in Abraham's heart. If ye be Christ's, is the relationship, for then the Holy Ghost beareth witness ye are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise. No Ishmaels, no sons of Keturah, not of the bond-women, but of the free. And what a sweet thought it is also to consider, that as God called Abraham when an idolater, so now the gifts and callings of God are the same. And in every call doth he not say, "look unto the rock whence ye are hewn, and to the hole of the pit whence ye are digged? Look unto Abraham your father, and unto Sarah that bare you, for I called him alone, and blessed him, and increased him." Do not overlook this, my soul, it, will always tend to exalt and endear thy Jesus. But let us not stop here. Supposing, as some have thought, that the Baptist was standing on the banks of Jordan, and referring to the twelve stones which Joshua formerly placed there for a memorial (Josh. iv. 9.) of the twelve tribes of Israel; the allusion to the creating souls from such unpromising, and unheard-of means, becomes a most delightful thought to a child of God, to comfort him concerning the sovereignty of God's grace. Pause, my soul, and let the thought fill up thine evening's meditation, lie down with thee, and form thy songs of the night. Had it pleased thy covenant God in Christ so to have wrought his salvation, no doubt, nothing could have been more easy to his Omnipotency than to have raised heirs of glory from the stones. When the human soul, which came out of the Almighty Maker's hand at first pure and holy, had by apostacy lost all its beauty and loveliness, how quickly might Jehovah have reduced it to its orignal nothingness, and from the stones of the earth raised up a seed to praise him! But here, as in a thousand instances, God's ways are not our ways, nor his thoughts our thoughts. To glorify his dear Son, the soul, though polluted and defiled, shall be made infinitely more precious by redemption, than it was by creation when unpolluted. Beautiful as it was before it fell, yet it is vastly more beautiful now, when washed in the Redeemer's blood. Had it continued in its uprightness, it would have been but the uprightness of the creature, still liable to fall at any time from its integrity, as Adam did. But now united to Jesus, the righteousness and purity of the redeemed is the righteousness and holiness of the Redeemer, and cannot possibly be lost or forfeited any more. "Thy Maker is thine husband, the Lord of Hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel, the God of the whole earth shall he be called." Pause, my soul! Hast thou a part, an interest in this blessedness? Art thou a poor gentile by nature and practice, an alien to the commonwealth of Israel, a stranger to the covenants of promise, and once without hope, without God, and without Christ in the world, and art thou now brought nigh by the blood of Christ? Surely had God raised a seed from the stones of the earth to Abraham to bless him, the act would not have been more sovereign, neither the mercy more gracious! Hath Jehovah raised thee from death, sin, and hell; washed thee in the blood of the Lamb; regenerated thee by his blessed Spirit; made thee a temple for himself, and formed thee for his glory? O then join the prophet's song, and cry out in his words, " Sing, O ye heavens! for the Lord hath done it; shout, ye lower parts of the earth: break forth into singing, ye mountains: O forest, and every tree therein: for the Lord hath redeemed Jacob, and glorified himself in Israel."From the POOR MAN'S MORNING AND EVENING PORTIONS.
[Top of page]