"This is the resting place, let the weary rest; and this
is the place of repose"—
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with
God, and the Word was God." John 1:1
This is what gives to the palm-grove of heavenly promise
all its glory. Let us seek to grasp and realize the full grandeur of the
Truth of truths; to have it more frequently before us as a subject of
devout contemplation—that the Christ of Nazareth, the Savior of Calvary—He
who bled for us as Man upon the cross, and pleads for us on the throne, is
the Mighty Jehovah; that He was before all things; that He reared every arch
and pillar in the Universe Temple. "Lift up your eyes on high, and behold
who has created these things, that brings out their host by number; He calls
them all by their names." Before these stars were made; before these
altar-fires were lighted in immensity; before man or angel or seraph, throne
or dominion or principality or power existed, this all-glorious Being
lived—one in essence and substance with the Eternal Father!
The supreme divinity of the Lord Jesus Christ is the
Key-stone of the arch. Remove it, and the whole superstructure collapses.
More than Luther ever said regarding justification, it is the doctrine of a
standing or a falling Church. To eliminate it from the creed of Christendom
would be like blotting out the sun from the visible heavens. Oh, if Jesus is
but a creature, though the highest in rank in the heavenly peerage, I cannot
confide to Him my eternal destinies. If He who bowed His head on that cross
is a mere man and no more, I cannot look to Him as the Rock of Ages. A
creature! as well pillow my head on the unstable wave. But blessed be God, I
can plant my foot upon the living Rock of His deity. I can trust in
Him, not as a prince, or as a mere man, in whom there would be no support:
but invoking Him as JEHOVAH, I can, with devout confidence of a gracious
answer, join in the prayer, "O GOD the Son, Redeemer of the world, have
mercy upon us, miserable sinners!"
Great indeed is the mystery of godliness, God
manifest in the flesh: the Divine Being who created by His word—who
sustains by His providence. Let the Unitarian take His Gospel without
Godhead in it—let Infidelity attempt to reduce the Person and mission of the
all-glorious Immanuel to that of the mere Founder of a new system of divine
philosophy, a new Head of a religious school—it is ours to pay a nobler and
truer homage to Him who is unveiled to us in sacred story as "the Word,"
"the Life," "the Light," "the Truth," "the Omnipresent," "the
Heart-searcher," the "Beginning and the Ending," the Creator of worlds—the
Ransomer of souls—the Wonderful—the Adored of angels—the appointed Judge—the
enthroned King—the I AM of eternal ages!
Be it ours to testify that the struggles and toils of
1800 years have not been made to defend and vindicate a monstrous
delusion—that thousands of crowned martyrs now in heaven have not shed their
blood to uphold a lie. Be it ours to see in Him the glory of illimitable
Godhead enshrined in a human tabernacle—yes, and better still, be it
ours to say, in reverential faith, as we fall at His feet, "This God shall
be our God forever and ever!"
In the highest interpretation of the Psalmist's language,
well may we call upon all creation to rise and do homage to this its
Incarnate Lord. Praise Him in the heavens! Praise Him in the heights! 'O
Sun of this great world, both eye and soul,' reflect His glory! Moon!
take your silver lyre—strike its chords in the praise of your Maker!
Stars, gather your brilliant gems as a crown for His brow! Floods,
rise and thunder forth His praise! Every flower that blooms, come and
waft your fragrance around the Rose of Sharon! Lisping infancy, come with
your Hosannahs! Penitence, come bathed in tears! Sorrow, come in the
extremity of anguish to this living God, yet your Brother! Youth, come with
your green ears of consecration! Manhood, come in your strength! Old age,
come leaning on your staff. Come, saints and prophets of old! Come, noble
army of martyrs! Come, you heavenly hosts! cherubim and seraphim, gather in
to the universal homage! Let the Church triumphant echo back the strains of
"the Church throughout all the world"—"YOU ARE THE KING OF GLORY, O CHRIST!
YOU ARE THE EVERLASTING SON OF THE FATHER!"
"Strong Rock of Ages, swathed in clouds of light,
Whose heights unclimbed, never foot of angel trod:
Ancient of Days, Almighty—Infinite,
Older than Nature's eldest born—Great God!
We praise, we bless, we magnify Your name!
Through everlasting eras You are still the same."
"'I am the Alpha and the Omega,' says the Lord God, 'who
is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.'"