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sition that you do not believe in the benefits of Christ's death and passion; it is of course that we believe it; so much of course, that we do not require the sacramental pledges to assure us thereof. Are you so sure of God's mercy, that you need not seek it in the way of his appointing: so sure of his love, that you need not do the things that he has said? so sure of your food, you need not eat it; of your medicine, you need not take it? so penitent you need no pardon; so faithful you need no grace; so grateful you need make no acknowledgements? “God knows our hearts.” Yes, he does know; and whether you will come, or whether you will not come, He has no discoveries to makeHe knows it all. But he who has nothing to discover, has determined that nothing shall be taken for granted: he will have no things of course; he will have outward manifestation of every inward feeling. “With the heart man believeth unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” “Unless ye eat my flesh, and drink my blood, ye have no part in me.” God accepts no penitence without confession, no love without obedience, no grace without prayer, no faith without profession. And what he does not accept, He has not promised. He has not promised pardon, hope, or safety, apart from the means appointed to convey them, to which end he has especially ordained these holy mysteries.

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When we need not the blessings, we may dispense with the instruments. When faith is swallowed up in sight, and hope in joy, and death in victory; then the water courses will be cut off, and the waters called back to the fountain; and these holy sacraments will cease for us: "I saw no temple therein, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.” Rev. xxi. 22.

But, until the fulness of that time be come, to all who think they have no need of these, who refuse to come to the stream, that they may drink; to the tables, that they may be fed; who will not wash in Jordan, that they may be clean; who take all for granted-Christians of course--we may use the Apostle's words, “Because thou sayest I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked; I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich, and white raiment that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness may not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eye-salve that thou mayest see."

On the single alternative we have said something, but not enough; suppose you are not entitled to the benefits exhibited and received in the Lord's Supper, can you believe it and go in peace? If it is so, you have no part in Christ; no participation in his blood; no

benefit of his death; no remission of sin; no sanctifying spirit; no help in life, no hope in death, no promise for eternity: for these are the benefits distributed to the faithful in the Lord's Supper, to which you are not entitled. And as there is no other name given under heaven whereby we may be saved, but the name of Jesus Christ; in whose body and blood you cannot be partakers, there is but one sequence-you are lost for ever! It is an awful sentence: but it is yours, not ours; and the everlasting seal is not yet affixed to it. The Saviour still repeats the loving words, “ Come unto me, all that travail and are heavy laden, and I will refresh you.” The scripture still contains this precious truth, “God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son, to the end, that all that believe in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” “ This is a true saying and worthy of all men to be received, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.” The church repeats her slighted invitation, “Ye that do truly and earnestly repent you of your sins, and are in love and charity with your neighbor, and intend to lead a new life, following the commandments of God, and walking henceforth in his holy ways; draw near with faith, and take this holy sacrament to your comfort." There is yet time. “To-day," while there remaineth a day, “if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.” To-day, while it is called to

day, lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.” There is a day of grace, , but no to-morrow. “For behold the night cometh in which no man can work."

66 Ther remaineth no more sacrifice for sin, but a certain fearful looking-for of judgment.”

97

CHAPTER VI.

OF THOSE THAT ARE AFRAID TO COME.

We have supposed a case -We have seen in idea the recusant crowd disperse; and if the master of the feast has said on the one hand, “ They that were bidden were not worthy," has he not cause to say on the other, “Were there not ten cleansed? where then are the nine? There is not found to give glory to God, save this stranger.” Jesus has watched the receding steps of some to whom nothing we have said is applicable; who do indeed write the same hard sentence against themselves; "they are not fit, they are not ready now," and go away in sorrow, not in scorn; intending to return some better day. And we can fancy that we hear the benignant voice again, as it spake once to the disciples in the wilderness: “ They need not go away, give ye them to eat." The divine master's feasts are all alike: “ They have fasted all the day and eaten nothing: if I should send them away fasting, they will faint by the way.” Hunger was the preparation for that miraculous feast. “Fetch hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind.” Others had the invitation, but it was the hungry and

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