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Jesus Christ should not be contemplated but with awful apprehension, or with holy joy.

With apprehension, if we are the enemies of the Lord Jesus; with joy, if we are his obedient subjects.

The enemies of Jesus Christ should contemplate the end of his mediatorial kingdom with apprehension and awe. It does not terminate till he hath “put down all rule and authority and power; till he hath put all enemies under his feet.” What then will be their destiny? He was exalted to be the King of Zion. And they refused homage to him, to whom all power was given in heaven and in earth. They refused to rely for pardon on the sceptre of his mercy. And he will execute upon them the tremendous threat, " I will rule them as with a rod of iron ; I will break them in pieces like a potter's vessel

Faithful servants of the Lord Jesus! contemplate the august event, when he delivers up his mediatorial kingdom with holy joy. He will not relinquish his office as your Mediator, until he hath put down under his feet all your enemies ; until he hath subdued your last enemy, death; until he hath made you kings and priests unto

u

u Psalm ii. 9.

B b 2

God; exalted you to reign with him for ever Then he delivers up his kingdom of grace. “ God” becomes “ all in all.” The eternal Godhead will be the source of your glory and felicity. Still, God the Son, though in his glorified human nature, subject to the Father, will in that nature, as the eternal Son, be the object of your worship and your love. You shall reign with him, your Redeemer, the Son of God, in felicity and glory unspeakable, and without end.

Come then, and in the memorials which he instituted, celebrate the praises of him, through whose grace and power you are made heirs of glory. Nourished and strengthened by his spiritual body and blood, continue his servants, submit yourselves to his holy will and pleasure, study to serve him in true holiness and righteousness all your days; and you shall finally witness the glorious termination of his kingdom as Mediator; when you shall reign with him as the King of glory; and join for ever in that ascription of homage“ Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb, for ever and ever.”

SERMON XXIII.

THE PRACTICAL IMPORTANCE OF THE
DOCTRINE OF THE TRINITY. ·

[TRINITY SUNDAY.]

EPHESIANS ii. 18.

Through him we both have access by one Spirit unto

the Father.

The doctrine of the Trinity commands our faith, on the authority of that Almighty but incomprehensible Being, who has revealed his Divine nature as subsisting in three Persons.

Persons are known and distinguished by titles, by attributes, and by operations. Distinct titles, attributes and operations are ascribed in the sacred writings to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. And yet while there is a Trinity of

persons, there is a unity of essence or of nature; for “the Lord our God is one Lord.”

a Deut. vi. 4.

To object to this doctrine, and still more to reject it, because we are unable to comprehend it, would be an act of the greatest folly. For, if we doubt or reject whatever we are unable to comprehend, there is scarcely any truth, not merely of religion, but even of human science, to which we should assent.

It is impossible indeed that the truths of God's word can contradict the clear, strong, and unbiassed dictates of reason. And therefore, prior to all examination of their scriptural claims, we pronounce that certain tenets cannot be revealed in the word of God. Thus, for example, the doctrine of transubstantiation, that the bread and wine of the holy Eucharist is not only spiritually,“ verily and indeed” in force and effect, but actually the real body and blood of Jesus Christ; and not merely his body and blood, but his soul and Divinity--this doctrine so directly and palpably contradicts our reason, that we are justified in immediately rejecting it. The doctrines, that the benevolent and just Parent of the universe will condemn us to everlasting misery, not merely for our own sins committed against knowledge and against grace, but for the sin of Adam in which we had no participation—that he who is righteous in all his ways, and is no respector of persons, should select certain persons as the subjects of his everlasting favour, and doom others to remediless perdition without any regard to their qualifications or their conduet, are tenets

which are abhorrent to our reason and our feelings, and which ought instantly to be rejected.

But the doctrine of the Trinity is of a very different nature. To use the common but the just mode of expression in regard to it-it transcends our reason, but does not contradict it. And the difference between things contradicting our reason and things transcending it, is obvious. Thus, that there is a Being who is the cause of all things, and himself without cause, infinite and eternal, existing without any limits of space or of time, is a truth which transcends our reason, and of which therefore reason is not a competent judge. But that this Being, just and good, should create intelligent creatures for the express purpose of condemning them by an absolute decree to endless misery, is a tenet which directly contradicts reason, and which cannot be true. The existence of three Persons in one God is a doctrine which transcends human comprehension, but is in no degree abhorrent to the dictates or the feelings of unbiassed reason.

On the contrary, my brethren, it shall be my object in this discourse briefly to shew you that it is a doctrine of the most important and valuable practical consequences, and therefore every way congenial with the dictates of the understanding and the feelings of the heart.

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