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This is the object I now propose to your attention, and the prize I hold out for your exertions. It is worth all other blessings, for it includes them all. Seek then this best of gifts; seek after it as hidden treasure. This love, if once shed abroad in the heart, will overawe your passions and appetites, those troublers of man ; will appease conscience; will diffuse.contentment through the soul; will animate in the discharge of duty; will influence to the practice of every virtue; will soothe the soul in afflictions ; will invigorate it in danger; will cheer it in the prospect of death. The love of Christ constraineth in every situation and circumstánce. It is the only effectual remedy for the corruptions of our nature, and the disorders of our fallen state.
May we ever feel its power in our own souls. May the consolations which it imparts support us through life; and may we realize the hope it here produces, in our Father's kingdom. AMEN.
THE REDEEMER'S TEARS OVER LOST
LUKE XIX. 41, 42.
And when he was come near, he beheld the
city, and wept over it, saying, If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but novo they are hid from thine eyes. .
As our Lord was God manifest in the flesh, so in his conduct were discernible, evident marks of divinity and humanity. His humanity, however, was perfect, void of sin; and his divinity was veiled, so as to prevent its glory from dazzling the beholders. Of this we have a striking instance, in his triumphant entrance into Jerusalem, of which an account is given in this chapter. Instead of the awful emblems of sovereign majesty, meekness and humility adorned his presence, and marked his royal state. “ He is just,” saith the prophet, predicting this, “and having salvation; lowly, and “ riding upon an ass, and upon a colt, the foal " of an asso.” This he did amidst the shoutings of the people, who sang hosannas to the Son of David, and strewed branches of palmtrees as he went along. . · Though here was pomp, it was the pomp of him who was meek in heart, and humbled himself to assume the form of à servant. His mind was employed about more important concerns, than the acclamations of a fickle multitude. He was approaching Jerusalem, that great city; and, foreseeing its approaching fate, was troubled in spirit, Its inhabitants had for ages discovered a peculiarly impenitent and hardened disposition. They had killed the prophets, and stoned them which were sent unto them. Towards Christ himself, they had conducted
a I have availed myself, in these two Sermons, of Mr. Howe's discourse on the text.
themselves as enemies. He was in the midst of them, and they knew him not. He came to his own, and his own received him not. In the course of a few days, they were to add to their other crimes, the aggravated one of murdering the Prince of life. Their punishment was to be proportionably great. Their state ruined, their city and temple destroyed, and they themselves slain, or banished, or sold for slaves, would manifest the aggravated nature of their guilt, as requiring such exemplary vengeance in this world. Nor was this vengeance to terminate here; we have reason to conclude that it extended to eternity. For, according to the command of Christ, when Jerusalem was about to be invested with the Roman armies, the Christians . fled to the mountains for safety. They, therefore, who remained within the city, remained in opposition to the warning of Christ, and in rebellion against the God of heaven. The temporal judgments which they experienced, were only the preludes of that tremendous wrath, which awaited the enemies of our Lord in a future state. The disposition of mind which prompted the infatuated multitude to cry, “ His blood be “ upon us and our children,” prompted them to resist the Roman arms, and to rush madly to their own destruction.
These were the topics of reflection, which crowded into our Lord's mind, as he drew nigh to Jerusalem. He wept over it. In these tears was seen the man; but the man holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners; the man who, though injured and slighted by them, still pitied them; though rejected by them, still wished them well. He wept over the temporal calamities which awaited the city; but chiefly over that spiritual blindness, that awful hardness of its inhabitants, which occasioned their ruin in this life, and fitted them for destruction in the life to come. He wept, because the time of repentance for their crimes was past, and the time of punishment was at hand. He wept over his enemies, his bitter enemies, that they did not know the day of their visitation. “ If thou hadst known,” said he, “ even' in this thy day, the things which “ belong to thy peace; but now they are “ hid from thine eyes.” . In his manner of expression, we see the sensibility of his na