Page images

ion, which attributed divine nature and divine prerogatives to one of his creatures? Would he suffer his church to be thus imposed on from the beginning of the world to the present day, and to the end of time; and by his word encourage the error? If the Scriptures may be credited; if Christ was sincere and spoke the truth, there appears to be as high evidence, as language can afford, that Christ is divine.


"THERE is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved," Acts 4:12. The sacred scriptures abundantly testify that human nature, by the apostasy, lost its purity and dignity; lost divine approbation; contracted guilt, and incurred the displeasure of heaven. The sacred scriptures testify that from this sinful, unhappy condition, it could not, by its own power and wisdom, extricate itself. Without foreign aid it must for ever remain in a state of sin and wretchedness. The same sacred scriptures reveal a Savior; a personage, who came to seek and save that which was lost. He was early promised to the world; and he was revealed by the name Savior. Salvation was promised through him. God, by his prophet declared, saying, "Israel shall be saved in the Lord, with an everlasting salvation." By the same prophet he foretold the blessing of the Messiah to the world. "I will give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth. My salvation is gone forth, the isles shall wait upon me, and on mine arm shall they trust. In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely; and this is the name wherewith he shall be called, The Lord, our Righteousness."

A short time before Christ was born, an angel appeared unto Joseph, and directed him to call the child, which was to be born of Mary, Jesus. This name was given him on account of its appropriate

[ocr errors][merged small]

signification. He was to be a Savior; and the name Jesus, has that import. Christ said of himself, "The Son of man is come to save that which was lost." Zacharias, under the influence of the Holy Spirit, said, "Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people; and hath raised up an horn of salvation for us." At the birth of Christ an angel declared the joyful event, saying, "Unto you is born this day, in the city of David, a Savior, which is Christ the Lord." The devout Simeon took the child Jesus in his arms. Under the influence of God's Spirit, and in rapture with the prospect of Christ's blessings, he said, "Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word; for mine eyes have seen thy salvation." Christ, speaking of the love of God said, "God sent not his Son into the world. to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved." Christ repeatedly conveyed the idea that he was the Savior of the world; and the universal tenor of his works confirmed his word.

The apostles abundantly inculcated the sentiment. that Christ is the Savior of the world. "Through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved. Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. He is also able to save them to the uttermost, that come unto God by him. The Father hath sent the Son to be the Savior of the world." It is a prominent doctrine of the New Testament that Christ is the Savior of the world.

Christ saves sinners from their sins. When he surveyed mankind after the apostasy, and by his allseeing eye looked through every generation to the close of time, be perceived that all were corrupt; that all had gone out of the way; that there was none that did good, no not one. He perceived that they might be saved from their sins; and he undertook the work. He had authority to send the Holy Spirit into the world to repair human nature; to support and

[ocr errors]

comfort people in the way of obedience. This step
was necessary, because, according to divine constitu-
tion, no unclean thing was suffered to enter into the
kingdom of heaven. Christ had authority to adopt
and prosecute this method; for all authority in heaven
and on earth was given to him.
When he saw his
disciples sorrowful because he was about to leave the
world, he promised to send them the Comforter, who
would reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness,
and of judgment; and who would guide them into all
truth, and teach them all things. The scriptures
attribute a change of heart, or the washing of regen-
eration to the Holy Spirit. As Christ sends the Holy
Spirit into the world to do this office, the same work,
the work of sanctification is attributed to him. Paul,
to the Corinthians, makes his salutation to those who
are sanctified in Christ Jesus. He adds, "ye are
sanctified in the name of the Lord Jesus." By sancti-
fying sinners by his Spirit, Christ saves sinners from
their sins. Those, who are born of his Spirit are
saved from the dominion of sin. They
They cease to relish
it. They cease to practise it habitually. They are
saved from the bondage of the great adversary. If
sanctification be not complete in this life; if they, at
times fall into transgression, yet they experience a
great deliverance from sin and from the power of the
great adversary; and they are brought into the liberty
of the sons of God.

Christ saves the human body from the dominion of death. In consequence of sin, a sentence of mortality was pronounced upon the human race. This sentence, with a few individual exceptions, and with the exception of those, who will be living on the earth at the day of the resurrection, has been, and will be carried into execution. The human family generally have been and will be under the empire of death. Christ has given assurance that death will, one day, be swallowed up in victory; that he will reanimate and reorganize the lifeless bodies of the human race, and render them immortal.

[ocr errors]

Christ not only saves sinners from sin; their bodies from a continuation of death; but he saves their souls from destruction. He has obtained reprieve for the human race. He has magnified the divine law and made it honorable. He has proposed conditions, favorable conditions to the guilty race of man, on which he will forgive their sins, and present them to the Father justified in his sight. Had not Christ interposed in behalf of sinners; became a curse for them, they must have suffered the penalty of the law, and be for ever banished from the enjoyment of God, and suffer his indignation for ever. But Christ has prepared the way for the return of sinners to holiness and happiness. He offers gracious conditions on which he will restore them; and he affords aid to assist them to fulfil those conditions. He has given assurance that he will save from the second death all those, who repent of sin and put their trust in him.

Christ saves sinners by his own sacrifice. He made his soul an offering for sin. By this sacrifice he supported the honor of God's law; and the rights of God's throne while he procured remission of sin for penitent sinners.

After Jesus Christ had paid a ransom for sinners, he was in a capacity to make intercession with the Father for those, who believed on his name. The Sacred Scriptures bear testimony that he is a Mediator; makes intercession for believers; and that his intercession will be prevalent. "There is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus. He is the Mediator of a better coveS nant. He made intercession for the transgressors. Who also maketh intercession for us. We have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. God by covenant has assured his Son that he shall see of the travail of his soul and be satisfied. A portion of the human race will listen to the calls of the Gospel; will yield to the influences of the Holy Spirit and embrace the Savior. For this portion of


« PreviousContinue »