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times, so more especially on this great festival, earnestly implore the mighty aid of our Sanctifier, our Guide, our Comforter. “All the promises of God in Christ, are yea and amen:” and hath not our Emanuel said, “ask and it shall be given you, seek and ye shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto you?" Hath He not said, “ if ye being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him ?” Let us all then, “pray in faith, nothing doubting.”
I say, let us all pray:-For let it not be supposed that the duty of prayer is less incumbent on those, who may have a good hope through Christ, that his Spirit has been already shed abroad in their hearts. No: though in bearing the fruits of a holy and devoted life, they have indeed the strongest evidence that “the Spirit of Christ dwelleth in them,”—that they “have received the spirit of adoption, whereby they may cry Abba, Father ;"—this should only the more powerfully incite them still to “wait upon the Lord, that they may renew their strength,”— to take heed that they
quench not,” “ grieve not the Holy Spirit of God;”—but walk worthy of their high vocationwalk as becometh the children of God, “in all goodness and righteousness, and truth ;" praying always that they may be “ filled with the
knowledge of God's will, in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;” yea, that“He which hath begun a good work in them, would perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.”
And O! my beloved friends, may Almighty God of his mercy, so fit and prepare all our hearts for the reception of that Spirit, whose miraculous effusion our church this day commemorates, that we may “receive not his grace in vain.” May He who, ever “waiting to be gracious,” now stands at the door of our hearts and knocks,” incline us all to “hear his voice and open the door,” so shall He“ come in and sup with us,” and make his abode with us. And, knowing, brethren, that our “ bodies are the members of Christ,” and “the temples of the Holy Ghost which is in us, which we have of God ;” (yes, his free, his inestimable gift;)—may it be our chief, our constant care, that they may not only be nominally, but really, “ habitations of God through the Spirit.”
O! let us lift up the everlasting gates of our souls, that the King of Glory may come and dwell in us, and daily consecrate us more and more unto himself. Thus united to God, through his dear Son, who “ hath not been ashamed to call us brethren,” we shall enjoy that “peace which passeth all understanding :” for we shall find that “ His Father is indeed our Father, His
God our God.” Yea, through all the temptations and trials of life, we shall “evermore rejoice in His holy comfort;" His Spirit will ever be our Rule and Guide; and, strengthened by His might, we shall be enabled “so to pass through things temporal, that we finally lose not the things eternal."
FOR TRINITY SUNDAY.
2 CORINTHIANS, IV. 3.—“If our Gospel be hid, it is hid to
them that are lost.”
ST. PAUL, in the opening of this epistle, after a general salutation to the Corinthian converts, expresses his grateful sense of God's mercy, in preserving him from the dangers he had encountered in Asia ; and, professing his unshaken confidence in the continued guardianship of his Heavenly Father, as well as his affectionate and anxious solicitude for those, of whose conversion he had been made the happy instrument, he pours forth his thanksgivings to God, for having entrusted him with the ministry of the Gospel, and for the success which had already crowned his labours; of which he says, the disciples of Corinth were “his credentials,”—a living epistle, written by the finger of God.
Still farther to confirm them in the faith, as well as to illustrate the dignity of the ministerial office, he sets before their newly enlightened minds, the superior glory and permanence of the Gospel Dispensation, as contrasted with the temporary duration, and comparative obscurity of the Mosaic ritual: reminding them, that while Moses, in declaring the law to the children of Israel, “put a veil on his face, that they could not steadfastly look to the end of that which was to be abolished,”—(which “veil was still upon their hearts,) it was the blessed privilege of those to whom Christ was revealed, Christ, the substance of the Old Testament shadows,--the great end of its most important prophecies,—to have“ the veil entirely taken away. Yea, that all, in whom “ the Spirit of the Lord" dwelt, freed from the law's oppressive bondage, might with unveiled face,“ behold as in a glass, the glory of the Lord ;"—that they should, even upon earth, be transformed into something like the resplendent image of their Redeemer; and, advancing from glory to glory, under the guidance of that divine Spirit, which first “shined into their hearts,” should reflect the rays of their Saviour's countenance, and shine henceforth, as lights in the world.
Having thus displayed the distinguished glories of the Gospel, and its blessed effects on the minds of all true believers, the Apostle, (dis