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would have dissuaded him from it. He was a straitened” till the time arrived when his " baptism” of sufferings and of blood should " be accomplished." He longed for the period when he should eat the last passover with his disciples. If in the garden he prayed that “ the cup might pass from him;" this cup was the overwhelming anguish which then weighed down his soul, from which he was delivered, and not the sacrifice of the cross. No wonder that he refuses to pray to be saved from the hour of suffering and death, since he adds, “ for this cause came I into the world.” The eternal purposes of God, the cove-.., nant engagements of the Redeemer, the language of ancient prophecy, his own predictions, the redemp- : tion of the world, all made it necessary that he should submit to this death, and undergo these woes; and for this very end he had become incarnate. He therefore exclaims, “ Father, glorify thy name." "I fully and freely resign myself to thine holy will. Display thy perfections, promote thine honour by me; and I will rejoice, whatever may be my sufferings.'
Pause a moment, and consider your Saviour thus looking forward, clearly discerning all that he must endure, fully knowing the burden of sin, and the agenies it deserved; yet consenting to bear the imputation of the one, and the sufferings of the other; never recoiling till he could cry with the voice of triumph, “ It is finished !" while he bows his head in death, and consummates the redemption of the world, Surely, if we are not dead to every generous feeling, our hearts must be affected by that love which urged him so willingly to endure the sufferings for us, so cheerfully to open his own heart for the reception of that sword of divine justice which was directed against us. It is true that he was violently slain by
wicked men; but from their power, how easily, had he chosen, could he have rescued himself! He who, by the majesty of his looks, and the authority of his words, cast to the ground those who came to apprehend him, could easily have delivered himself. While Judas betrayed him through covetousness, and Pilate condemned him through a worldly policy, and the Jews crucified him through rage, he gave himself only through love to man, and to display the glory of God. They intended only his death; but he, his death as a sacrifice, and was the sole offerer as it respected God, or benefited ús.
· His voluntary submission had scarcely been expressed before a loud and majectic “ voice from heaven" proclaimed, “ I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again.” Thrice, by such a voice, was the testimony of the Father given to Jesus. His baptism was his solemn inauguration into his priestly office. As under the old dispensation, those who were his types were set apart by the application of water and the holy anointing oil, so Jesus was designated as the High Priest of our profession by water and the effusion of that Holy Spirit whom the oil typified. On this occasion, the voice from heaven cried, • This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” One great design of the transfiguration was to exhibit Jesus as the sole Prophet of his church. Moses and Elias appear, therefore, for a time; but they depart; and when the Saviour is left alone, the voice from heaven, that re-echoes on the top of the mountain, points him out as the only Lawgiver. " This is my beloved Son; hear ye
him." And now that he makes his triumphant entry into Jerusalem, and is hailed as the Son of David, the King Messiah, this testimony is repeated; that thus, in the three
great mediatorial offices, Jesus might have the explicit attestation of his Father.
And how exalted is this testimony to the sublimity of the Redeemer's character, and the benefits of his mediatorial work : “ I have glorified my name.” In the incarnation of Immanuel, the wisdom and the faithfulness, and the love of God, had already been illustriously displayed. By his doctrine and instructions the divine perfections had been more fully revealed to the world than they ever had been before. The sublime and spotless holiness of his life was a visible image of the purity of his eternal Fathers, And his miracles were not only a proof of his miş. sion, but an evidence of the might of God, of the perfect subjection of all the powers of nature to its Author, and of the ease with which he could reward his friends, or punish his enemies.
Yes, in these and in other modes the honour of the divine name had been promoted by the Redeemer. But the voice from heaven added, “ I will glorify it again," more remarkably by thy death and the great effects of thy sacrifice. And has not this been fully verified ? Had we time to display the divine glory, as manifested in the cross, the resurrection, the ascension of Jesus; in the gift of the Holy Spirit; in the conversion of the Gentiles; you would instantly acknowledge that this declaration has been accomplished. But on these and other points we cannot dilate, but must leave them principally for your own meditation. Think only for a moment of the former state of the greater part of the world, of those nations that are now most civilized ? What were their fathers ? blind idolaters, without any true notion of God or of futurity; with cruel, absurd, or abominable rites of worship. What has
enlightened and reformed them? What has shown them the true character of the All-perfect; the acceptable mode of worshipping him, and the mode of reconciliation to him? What but the death of Jesus, and the consequent bestowal of that Spirit, who gave energy and success to the addresses of the apostles, and who inspired their writings? Think of the myriads upon myriads that have been plucked from ruin, that are now shining with light and burning with love before the throne of God, and that display the divine perfections inconceivably more than can all the material frame of nature, with all its pomp and majesty. Whence came it that these were thus exalted? Their own song affords the answer : “ Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, be glory and dominion for ever." Look at the believers who are still upon earth : who are praising and blessing God, celebrating his perfections, and advancing to his heaven. How came they to be the trophies of divine grace, the everlasting monuments of infinite love; beings who through 'eternity shall glorify the name of God? because Jesus died; and they obtained redemption through his blood, and sanctification by his Spirit. Look forward to that day which is hastening on: that day which our faith anticipates, and our hope longs for, when the whole earth shall be filled with the glory of God; when every heart shall beat high with love to the Lord; when songs of salvation shall float in every breeze; when this world, so long oppressed with sorrow and with sin, shall resemble heaven in happiness and purity. Whence comes it, that this revenue of praise and glory shall be given to the Most High? because Jesus died; and because the promises made of him and to him, in the everlasting covenant, and in the predictions of the prophets, must be accomplished. After such views, turn back and stand for a moment at the foot of the cross. Look upwards, and see how there especially the name of God is glorified. The divine perfections are there displayed in a degree infinitely greater than they are elsewhere manifested. You admire the goodness, which shines in nature and providence; which created, supports, and surrounds you with blessings : but what is this to that love which induced the Father to give the Son of his bosom to undergo such agonies for your salvation? You shudder at that justice and holiness which are announced in the scriptures, which are heard in the thunders and glitter in the lightnings on Sinai, and which blaze in the flames of hell; but they are more manifested in the tremendous sacrifice of Immanuel. The infinite holiness of God, his implacable hatred of sin, y and the impossibility that it should escape panishment, never were so fully attested as when God spared not his own Son, but was pleased to “ bruise him and put him to grief,” when he appeared in the stead of sinners. Review the other attributes of God, and
you will see them shining with equal lustre upon Calvary. It is there that those perfections, which appeared irreconcilable, beautifully and com- . pletely harmonize. Holiness is exalted, while grace triumphs. The rights of the divine government are unimpaired, while the sinner is saved. “ Righteousness and peace meet together, mercy and truth embrace each other." Yes! it is to the cross that believers go, to study the perfections of the God whom they adore, and to increase the fervour of their love to him. It is from the contemplation of it, that the hallelujahs of the redeemed in heaven are uttered