« ΠροηγούμενηΣυνέχεια »
way whatever to escape. Thus will we see the seasonableness of gospel tidings.
To meek poor ones, in particular, I would say, () ! sensible finners, pressed with the sense of your spiritual wants, your finfulness, misery, inability to help yourselves, you who see your absolute need of Christ, and withal your unworthiness of his help, who are longing for supply, and content with Christ on any terms, to you is the word of this salvation sent, particularly ; come away, and joyfully embrace these good tidings. To influence you to this, consider, That
your names are particularly in Christ's commission. He was sent to preach good tidings to the meek. The Lord knows that the poor convinced finner will have many doubts and fears, which will be hard for him to overcome, so as to get the tidings believed. Therefore, as in Mark, xvi. 7. the angel said unto the women,
« Go your way, tell his disciples, and Peter, that he gocth before you into Galilee, there ihall ye fee him, as he taid unto you.” So here particular notice is taken of the meek. God has a special eye on the outcasts of Ifrael to bring them in to himself, Isa. lv. si Again, consider, - That the grand end for which the Lord discovers to you your fpiritual poverty is, that you may come to Christ for supply: Gal. iii. 24. “Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster, to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.” God brought a famine on Jacob's household in Canaan, when there was corn in Egypt, that Jofeph's brethren might have an errand to him. Therefore reject not the counsel of God against yourselves. Consider farther,
That Christ is able to supply all your wants : " Open thy mouth wide, says he, and I will fill
it,” Psal, lxxxi, 10. Were your wants as great as Paul's, as Mary Magdalene's, as. Manaffeh's were, he has enough to supply them all, a ful.. ness of merit and of Spirit. If all the world were so poor in spirit, there is enough for them all, and to spare; there is an infinite value in his blood, and an infinite efficacy in his Spirit. Consider, That you cannot get
your wants any
where eise : Acts iv. 12. « Neither is there fala. vation in any other; for there is none other name under heaven, given among men, whereby we must be faved.” Alas! poor finners are ready to. go to wrong doors for supply, and to seek to have their wants supplied by themselves. But all your duties, prayers, watchings, mournings, will
do no good, unless you believe : John, vi. 29. “ This is
. the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.”. Confider, lastly, i. That our Lord makes you welcome to him and his fulness, and that freely, Isa. lv. I. I dare not come to Christ, fays one. Why so ? Christ is a gift, even the gift of God, Jobn, iv. 19. ; , and what is freer than a gift? Nothing is required of you but to receive it. Incline then your ear, and come unto him, hear, and your souls fhall live.:Amen.
Isa. Ixi. 1.-To bind up the broken hearted.
which'the Father has put in Christ's hand. He hath sent him to bind up the broken hearted. In the words there is, 1. The work itself, to bind up ; Luke hath it to heal, chapter iv. 18. He is employed by the Father as the great Physician to bind up finners, as a surgeon does a broken bone any
other wound, and to heal them. This belongs to his priestly office. We have, 2. The objects of it; the broken hearted, such as are fick of lin, who have their hearts broken and cast down within them, on account of fin, and its confequences. This is a sickness which Christ is sent to cure.
From this subject, you may observe the following
DOCTRINE, Our Lord Jesus is appointed of his
Father, to be the Phyfician of broken-hearted finners, to bind them up, and heal them.
For illustrating this doctrine, we shall confider,
I. What is that brokenness of heart, which is here meant.
II. What is it in and about fin which breaks the man's heart, who is thus evangelically broken hearted.
III. What sort of a heart a broken heart is.
IV. How the Lord Christ binds up, and heals the broken-hearted.
V. Make some improvement.-We are then,
1. To inquire what is that brokenness of heart which is here meant, and of which the Lord takes so much notice. The broken hearted is of two kinds.
1. There is a natural one, arising from natural and carnal causes merely, which worketh death, 2 Cor. vii. 10. Thus many who are very whole hearted in respect of sin, complain that their hearts and spirits are broken by their croffes, af. flictions, and ill usage which they meet with in the world. Thus Ahab, Haman, and Nabal, their hearts were broken with their respective crosses. This is nothing but the crack which a proud heart gets by God's providence, when it will not bow, and is very displeasing in God's fight. This Christ will not heal, till it is broken at another rate. There is,
2. A religious broken heart, which arises from religious causes, namely, fin and its consequences. Sin has sunk into the souls of all Adam's posterity, like a deadly poison. But most men are
whole-hearted, though they carry their death about with them, because the poifon has not yet begun to work. The thorn of guilt is sticking in their conscience, but they are easy, for it has not yet begun to fester. But when the poison begins to work, the heart is broken with it. Every such breaking of heart is not the sickness unto life which Christ is sent to heal. There is a twofold religious breaking of heart.--First, A mere legal one : Jer. xxii. 29. “ Is not my word like as a fire ? faith the Lord, and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces ?". When the heart is broken by the mere force of the law, it is broken as a rock in pieces by a hammer, each part remaining hard and rocky still. As it breaks the heart of a malefactor, to hear his doom pronounced, that he must be hanged for his crime ; so does the law break the heart of a sinner.
This breaks the heart for sin, but not from it. Thus the hearts of Cain and Judas were broken, and thus the hearts of the damned shall be broken for ever. Men
die of these wounds, and never be healed. But there is,--Sepondiy, An evangelical one. When not only the law does its part, but the gospel also breaks the finner's heart: Zech. xii. 10. And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and supplication, and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him as one mourneth, for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his first born." This is that kindly heart-breaking for fin, which is an effect of gospel-grace, a fickness of which never one shahi die, it is the very malady which in the text Christ is sent to cure. Sin in an ụngracious soul, is like poison in a serpent, it is agreeable VOL. III.