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God will be in heaven, and he is love. Jesus will be there, and his spirit is the spirit of love. The atmosphere of heaven is love. The angels dwell in love; and the spirits of all who shall be raised to the immortal state, will be filled with love.
“ No strife nor envy there,
The sors of peace molest;
Fill every happy breast.”
May we so continually contemplate this blissful scene, that it shall beget within us a heavenly mind.
“ Oh! may this prospect fire
Our hearts with ardent love!
Bear ev'ry thought above."
Let us, while in this mortal state, cherish faith in God, in all his promises. Let us not be turned away from his word. Let us keep our faith pure, and do all that lies in our power to keep the faith of our fellow men pure. Then they will have a cheering, purifying hope, which otherwise they cannot possess.
66 And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace
in your hearts to the Lord. And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.” Col. iii. 14-17.
BY REV. MOSES BALLOU.
“For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God.”—1 PETER üi. 18.
For what were the sufferings and death of Christ?
The Church has given us three answers to this question, viz.,
1st. They were a substitute for those of the sinner.
2d. They were designed to appease the anger, and placate the wrath of God.
3d. They were designed to vindicate the honor of the divine law.
It is well known that we reject the sentiments involved in these replies. We believe that nothing of this kind can be harmonized, either with the dictates of reason, or the teachings of revelation. Those, therefore, who have held these opinions, have made the inquiry a somewhat anxious one. They have asked us, on the supposition that these replies were incorrect, For what did Jesus suffer and die? In what are we to look for its necessity? What purposes did his sacrifice serve to aid? Where are the advantages to be derived from it? And how shall that large class of passages be interpreted, which speak of Christ, as“ being made a curse for us?” Gal. iii. 13, as bearing “our sins in his own body on the tree?” 1 Peter ii. 24, and suffering “ for sins, the just for the unjust?” 1 Peter iii. 18.
I. In the first place, the death of Christ was the closing up of the whole system of legal offerings which the Jews, by divine appointment, had observed under the old dispensations.
No small part of the religion, instituted through the mediation of Moses, consisted in its sacrifices. These, though of many kinds, and required to be offered under a great variety of circumstances, you will find, if you examine them carefully, are never spoken of as affecting, in the least degree, or designed to affect, the Supreme Being ; but