Acts 12:39

Robert Hawker

"And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses."–Acts xii. 39.

What can be more blessed to a poor conscious sinner, such, my soul, as thou art from day to day, than the ministry of his servant the apostle, in these gracious words. Sit down, this evening, and, under his divine teaching, ponder them duly over. A poor guilty sinner needs a rich and holy Saviour. That he cannot justify himself in the sight of God, is most evident, for the least gust left upon the conscience would condemn him for ever. He cannot be justified by the deeds of the law; for by the law is the knowledge of sin, and in the law we learn that we have all sinned, and come short of God's glory. He cannot he justified by the offerings and sacrifices made under the law of Moses; for how can the blood of bulls and of goats take away sin? By what then, or by whom, my soul canst thou be justified? Hear what this sweet scripture saith: "By him, that is, by the Lord Jesus Christ, all that believe are justified from all things." Oh! how blessed is the view! how complexly satisfying to the conscience, is the redemption by Christ Jesus, "whom God hath set forth as a propitiation, through faith in his blood?" And do not fail to observe the extensiveness of the blessing: it is all that believe, yea, every individual believer; for the blood of Christ cleanseth from all sin; and the righteousness of Chest, in a way of justification, is to all and upon all that believe, for there is no difference. And do not fail also to observe the equality of the mercy in justification; it is to all the same. So that though believers differ in the strength of their faith, and in the different degrees of that faith, yet respecting their interest in Christ, and their union with Christ, the weakest, as well as the strongest, is equally justified, and equally secure. And for this plain reason: because the object of faith, which is Jews, is one and the same, and justification is in and by Christ, and doth not arise from the degree of apprehension the believer hath of it. Sweet thought to a poor timid believer! Hence the everlasting safety, both for acceptance in grace here, and the enjoyment of glory hereafter, is to an the same. And however the Lord, in his infinite wisdom, may think fit to appoint different paths for believers departures out of life; though some, like the apostles, shall be called to seal the testimony of their faith in Christ in blood, and wade through this red sea (if it may so be called) to join the multitude on the opposite shore, who are shouting the song of Moses and of the Lamb, whilst others sweetly fall asleep in Jesus on their beds, quiet and composed, amidst surrounding friends; yet, in the act of justification, all are alike. Jesus, taketh the lambs of his fold in his arms, and they shall lie in his bosom, while he leads the strong. In short, all that are in union with Christ, do live in Christ, and shall die in Christ, whether they be little children, young men, or fathers; for "by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which they could not be justified by the law of Moses." See, my soul, that thou hast this faith which is of the operation of the Spirit of God, and then lie down this night, and every night, with the composure of one that is in a state of justification with God, "having peace with God, through Jesus Christ our Lord."



Robert Hawker

[Top of page]