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THE PROCESS OF SALVATION BY THE LORD
JESUS AND THE SPIRIT OF GOD.
JESUS CRUCIFIED, BURIED, RISING FROM
[ON THE FIRST SUNDAY AFTER EASTER.)
PSALM cxxvi. 3.
The Lord hath done great things for us; whereof we are
The world witnessed, in three successive days, events of infinitely greater moment than any
that occurred, or than can possibly occur, through the periods of its duration Jesus Christ was crucified-Jesus Christ was under the dominion of the grave-Jesus Christ rose from the tomb.
These are the events which the Church, at this sacred season, has been commemorating.
Events, with which we are familiar, lose in a degree their power to affect us. It is serious and continued reflection alone that can present them to us with all the force and liveliness which are due to their intrinsic importance, and to the interest which we may have in them. But, unless there be some powerful impulse arising from
the relation which these events bear to our worldly prosperity or happiness, they may pass through our minds like the shadow that glides over the scene of the morning.
On what other principles can we account for the fact, that events so sublime, awful, and momentous as the crucifixion, the sepulture, and the resurrection of Jesus Christ-events in which we have the greatest possible interest, involving as they do, our eternal destiny, fail to occupy, as they ought, our most serious attention? We are familiar with them; we have heard of them from our childhood; and unconnected as they are with those objects of time and sense which engross us, they do not stimulate us to that serious consideration of them which is necessary to impress them upon our minds.
But, my brethren, to withhold from truths of infinite importance that reflection and attention which may be necessary to enable us to discern and to feel their value, is dishonourable to us as rational creatures, whose intellectual and moral powers ought always to be exercised upon events and truths with an earnestness proportionable to their worth and dignity. What truths of greater moment than the death, the burial, and the resurrection of the Son of God! And what truths impose upon us higher obligations of gratitude, obedience, and love! Redeemed by these great events from a spiri
tual thraldom, infinitely more grievous than the bondage to which the Jews were subjected by the haughty tyrant of Babylon, we have infinitely more reason to exclaim than they had at their deliverance from their temporal captivity—“ The Lord hath done great things for us, whereof we are glad." That this
may be the language dictated by the lively impulse of gratitude, let us now devote a short time of serious reflection to the “ great things” which God hath done for us, in the events of the present season of devout commemoration
Jesus our Lord crucified.
Worldly pride may tauntingly ask; and a sceptical philosophy repeat the questionWhat is there great in the death of one who was crucified as a malefactor, and who lived the scorn of men, and the outcast of the people ? Are we to seek for the evidences of his greatness in his own obscurity and poverty, and in the obscurity and poverty of his associates ; in the reproach, the ignominy, the buffetings and scourgings which were inflicted on one who terminated his career in a death the most ignominious that could be inflicted? But was there nothing great in the signs and wonders and mighty works by