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preaching this, for it is a very old Jesus had laid down his life was any doctrine, although some tell us it is thing but comfort for you ; it made quite a new doctrine, but they show you wretched, and it made you mourn, their dreadful and consummate igno- and it made you repent in dust and rance when they say so; it is an old ashes. That was a good sign; but doctrine that the Apostles used to has there not been another effect propreach, and the new doctrine is, that duced. “Through this man,” said which is contrary to it: the Apostle Peter, “is preached unto you the forPeter was preaching this old doctrine, 'giveness of sins, and by him, all that and a large number of persons were believe, are justified freely from all cut to the heart, and they began to ' things, from which they could not be cry out, what shall we do to be saved ! justified by the law of Moses.” Who It was a very singular thing, that a knows the value of that text? No man like Peter, who had been a fish- one can know the value of it till he erman, who had been an Apostle, who knows the value of being justifiedwas a very unlikely agent to be so till he knows the need of standing in a employed, that such a man preaching righteousness superior to his own—till the Gospel should produce such an he has learnt that his own righteous. effect. It was the Holy Ghost pro- ness will not do to stand before God. duced the effect, Peter was merely the And thus, in the words of Scripture, agent. The Holy Ghost brought the we see that all his righteousness is word home to the hearts of the people, nothing worth, and that his iniquities, and the effect was, that they began to like the winds, carry him away." To enquire what they should do to be such a man, who hears of pardon and saved—they were pricked to the heart. peace through His blood, all the world
Ah, my dear hearers, there are some would be little and poor in compaof you who have been pricked to the rison with such a gift.
not heard of Christ crucified for nothing.' together-you will one day be sepaIt touched the heart and wounded the rated. The last day—and you will heart, and you went out of church' not stand all together, at least I fear thinking, of all men in the world, you not. “When the Son of Man shall were the most wretched-thinking that come in his glory, and all the holy there was hardly a sinner upon earth angels with him, then shall he sit upon whose guilt was so great as yours, the throne of his glory; and before and that there was a great probability, him shall be gathered all nations, and notwithstanding all, you would be he shall divide them one from another, sure to go to eternal ruin ; and you as a shepherd divideth his sheep from used to go and mourn and weep and the goats ; and he shall place the sheep lament and repent and bewail your on his right hand, and the goats on his sins in secret; and the thought that | left.”
(To be continued.)
London: Published for the Proprietors, by T. GRIFFITHS, Wellington Street, Strand;
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SERMON BY THE REV. T. MORTIMER.
THURSDAY, MAY 5, 1831.
(The Rev. T. Mortimer's Sermon concluded.) What does it mean? Do you wish, and the dead, may you and I appear to know? It means, that when the with joy, and not be ashamed, or have Son of Man shall come, the real Chris- cause to be ashamed, when he shall tian shall be safe on the right hand make his appearance. of the Judge, and the sinner shall be Now, then, I have tried to help you lost and damned. “I lay down my to judge, because the men who belong life for the sheep; the Good Shepherd to Christ—they who are the sheep of giveth his life for the sheep.” What Christ—they for whom the Son of says the church? How does she speak God did especially and effectively shed of the elect of God in this matter? his precious blood—those men, How does your church speak of it? your own church teaches you, they What dost thou learn in the articles are the called of God. “They, through of thy belief. “First, I learn,” says grace, obey the call,” says the seventhe church, “ to believe in God the teenth article—" they are justified Father, who made me and all the freely—they walk before God in good world. Secondly, in God the Son, works, and finally, through grace, they who hath redeemed me and all man- attain everlasting life. I want to kind. Thirdly, in God the Holy know, my Christian brethren, whether Ghost, who sanctifieth me and all the this is the case with some of you ? elect people of God." The elect, then, " I lay down my life for the sheep.", are sanctified—the sheep of Christ are It may serve you to judge whether sanctified. The man of the world may you be the sheep of Christ; because if scoff at the term-and no wonder he so, there will be the call effectual of his scoffs at the term who scoffs at the grace. “They, through grace, obey the thing. No wonder that you hear the call.” I shall be told this is mystery. men of the world speaking of Chris. It is. It is part of the mystery of god. tians as your sanctified ones—and that liness—it is mysterious, but it is truth. with a scoff--and that with a taunt. I have thus endeavoured, from time God grant that I may be found among to time, as God has enabled me, though them-God grant that you may be with much infirmity, to preach to you found among them. I ask of God to the word of life; and by and by we have my place among them; I ask not shall come to meet together for the to have my place among the rich, last time-God only knows how soon among the great, among the noble. we shall meet together for the last No, no; I ask to have my place with the time. The preacher and the people sanctified ones ; and in that day, when know very little of it; perhaps, how. the Lord shall come to judge the quick ever, in the midst of strength and use
fulness God may call, and we must of a disembodied spirit rising from the go. It was only last Tuesday that I earth and safe in heaven ! not only was attending the funeral of the Rev. the feeling that he has got to heaven Basil Wood, who for forty-five years himself, but that through grace he has had been preaching a faithful Gospel | been used as an humble instrument in in the metropolis. As he was carried bringing sinners to God, and has got to his grave, among other things, I those in glory, who may be his joy could not help thinking how many and crown of rejoicing in the day of had gone before him to another and a the Lord Jesus. better world, of those who had been Brethren, this is the Gospel we benefited by his ministry. Oh, with wish to preach to you; and after what joy must a faithful minister when having preached it here on earth, may he enters the presence of God and we be permitted through all eternity casts his eye around, with what joy to magnify the love of God in Christ, must he behold some of those who who has washed us from sin, from have been the children of his prayers the guilt of it, from the dominion of and the seats of his ministry! Oh, it, from the power of it, and delivered tell me not what this world can give us from the penalty of it, to admire tell me not of the riches, or the great- the mercy and the love of God, when ness, or the dignities that earth can we shall no longer need the mercy of give—but tell me what are the feelings | God.
DELIVERED BY THE REV. R. C. DILLON.
1 Timothy, i. 13.-“ But I obtained mercy." The whole of this and of the succeed- | finely does he combine the solemn in. ing epistle presents an affecting spec-junction—"This charge I commit unto tacle. It is that of a venerable old thee, son Timothy, fight the good fight minister instructing a young one—not of faith, lay hold on eternal life, wheremerely pointing out principles to him, unto thou art also called, and hast probecause in these Timothy had been fessed a good profession before many early initiated, having from a child witnesses,”-How finely is all this known the Holy Scriptures, which combined with his own triumphant were able to make him wise unto sal. feelings, as he raises the song of vic. vation, through faith in Christ Jesus— tory—“I have fought a good fight, I but illustrating those principles by his have finished my course, I have kept personal experience. He was anxious the faith : henceforth there is laid up to prepare the heart of his young dis- for me a crown of righteousness, which ciple for difficulties, which, in every the Lord, the righteous judge, shall variety of form, would assail him in give to me at that day; and not to me his progress through life. He re- only, but to all them also that love his sembled the brave old warrior un appearing." He had tried the extremity buckling his own armour, that he might of the battle; and he now hears the buckle on the armour of the youthful trumpet sounding his retreat from the soldier going forth to battle. And how field, which, with another note, was
APOSTLB NEEDED AND
summoning the youthful Timothy into quire what were the peculiar circumit.
stances in St. Paul's history which There are three things which this made it, if not more difficult, at short sentence awakens in the mind. least less probable for him to obtain First: What the apostle needed and mercy than for others.
He tells us obtained-mercy.
himself that he was the chief of sin. Secondly: How he obtained what But wherein did his sinfulness he needed : and
consist? What had been St. Paul's Thirdly: The glorious display which peculiar guilt before his conversion to is here made of the Divine Character. the faith of the Gospel? Had he been FIRST: Let us consider WHAT THE an idolator, an adulterer, or a drunk
OBTAINED— ard; or in any marked degree a slave MERCY :—" but I obtained mercy.” to his licentious appetites ? Had he
Probably the most concise and simple been unjust, dishonest, or covetous ? definition that we can give of mercy is, Was he ever chargeable with the guilt that it is tavour shewn to those who are of oppressing the poor, the fatherless, unworthy of it. Mercy, then, in its or the widow? or of notoriously vionature and operations is wholly free.lating the command to keep holy the No man can have any pretensions to sabbath-day? or of openly expressing mercy. Differences there may be, in his disregard and contempt of religious deed, between the degrees of guilt; duties? Was it in all, or in any of but even the least guilty can lay no these particulars, that he had been thus claim to the divine compassion; for eminently guilty? Strange as it may the establishment of a claim on the appear, he had not been guilty in any part of any individual wculd constitute one of them. So far otherwise, no the showing of compassion on God's man perhaps ever carried the code of part an act rather of justice than of moral or of eternal righteousness furmercy. In this respect, then, all man- ther than St. Paul carried it; for he kind are reduced to one melancholy declares, in his epistle to the Philiplevel-all have sinned and come short pians, that, “touching the righteousof the glory of God; so that every ness which is in the law, he had been mouth must be stopped, and the whole blameless.” I can readily imagine it world be found guilty before Him. very possible that I may be addressing But the admission of this truth by no some now present, who consider it sur. means requires us to say, that some prising, and passing strange, that an sinners do not stand in greater need of individual, who had neither been an mercy than others. The transgressions idolator, nor a profane, nor an immoral of some men may be of longer stand-man, should yet be called, and truly ing and of deeper dye than those of called, the chief of sinners. This is a others, and their pardon would be an declaration you find it difficult to underact of greater and richer mercy; it stand. And why do you find it so? would be a more striking display of because, brethren, we erroneously the riches of divine love. Now, such judge of sin if we judge it merely by was the mercy which the Apostle the outward act. The measure of our needed, and obtained : and there is one guilt before God is not to be estimated word in the text which seems to in- merely by the injury which we do to timate, that of all men he seemed the our fellow-creatures. The sinfulness least likely to have obtained it—"but of sin consists in its being committed I obtained mercy.”
against God, and in the opposition and It may be interesting, then, to in- enmity of the heart to the Divine character and will. Taking this as feet, whose name was Saul. He prothe standard, then, by which to form bably reproved their slackness, and our judgment, we shall find that St. said, “Strip and stone him, and I'll Paul's iniquity was of no common take charge of your raiment." He order. Outwardly moral, it is true, he himself, indeed, testifies to the same was in his conduct, and even zealous fact; and how feelingly does he men. in his religious profession; but he was tion it: “When the blood of the inwardly a bitter enemy to God and martyr Stephen was shed, I also was holiness. He was full of pride and standing by and consenting to his unbelief; the two worst sins of which death, and kept the raiment of them a man can be guilty. He hated the that slew him." After this he made Gospel, because it opposed his pre- havoc of the church, entering into judices, and bade him lay aside his
every house, and, without regard to self-righteous hopes of justifying him
sex or age, throwing the Christians self-hy his works; and because he into prison. His own confession ishated the Gospel he refused to attend * Many of the Saints did I shut up in to the proofs which might have con- prison, having received authority from vinced him of its truth. He obsti- the chief priests ; and when they were nately shut his eyes that he might not put to death I gave my voice against see, and his ears that he might not them. And I punished them oft in hear, while he conceived and cherished
every synagogue, and compelled them the most rancorous enmity against the to blaspheme; and being exceedingly holy Jesus and his faithful followers. mad against them, I persecuted them
I apprehend, then, brethren, that even unto strange cities.” Such was even if our examination of the Apostle's the unparalleled ferocity of this extraguilt were to terminate at the point to ordinary blasphemer and persecutor. which I have just brought it, we must You cannot fail, then, of seeing the allow it to have been guilt of no com- force of his expression in the textmon measure. But the description does “BUT I obtained mercy.” Sinner as I not end here; much remains to be was-reduced beneath the level of oradded. The virulence of the Apostle's dinary transgressors—an impious blasheart broke out into open hostility | phemer-an injurious and ferocious against God. In the very verse where persecutor—anenemy even to God himour text is placed he informs Timothy self, I yet obtained mercy. There was that he had been a blasphemer and a mercy with God in Christ Jesus even persecutor, and injurious; and how for me -He who came into the world many blasphemous speeches had he to save sinners found mercy, even for uttered against the blessed Jesus and me I was not out of the limits of his the Gospel of his grace! How many wondrous compassion—“ but I obfalse, malicious, and blood-thirsty tained mercy" and where sin aboundwords had he spoken against the un. ed, grace did much more abound, offending Christians ! But his rage SecondLY: Let us examine, then, against them had not been confined to HOW HE OBTAINED THIS MERCY. Where words; he was a persecutor, and in- was he when he obtained it? Was he jurious, as well as a blasphemer. The attending the sanctuary when the Savery first time his name is mentioned viour met with him? Was he smiting in the sacred history is in connexion upon his breast with agonizing conwith the martyrdom of Stephen, trition like the poor publican, who when the witnesses, it is said, laid went up to pray in the temple? Was down their clothes at a young man's he found in the use of any one of the