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The Blood of Sprinkling

The Blood of Sprinkling

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Published by glennpease
BY JOB ORTON



HeB. XII. 24.

And to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than
that of Abel.
BY JOB ORTON



HeB. XII. 24.

And to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than
that of Abel.

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Published by: glennpease on Nov 18, 2013
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THE BLOOD OF SPRIKLIGBY JOB ORTO HeB. XII. 24. And to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel. " God forbid, that I should glory," saith the apostle Paul, " save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, whereby the world is cru- cified to me, and I unto the world." Having felt the powerful influence of the death of Christ upon his own heart, he made it the object of his joy and boasting ; and took all opportunities to recommend to others the same regards to it. He is in the context, as in many other places of this epistle, showing how much more excellent the privileges of Christians were, than those of the Jews, and setting them in a comparative light. In the list of Christian privileges, he mentions this, that we are come *'to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel." It is in the original, " than Abel ;" so that inter- preters are not agreed to what the apostle here refers : whether to the sacrifice he offered, and of which God declared his accept- ance ; or to his own blood, which his cruel brother had shed. Many suppose that it refers to his sacrifice, which was more ex- cellent than that of Cain, and therefore God had respect to it. But Christ's sacrifice is much more excellent than that. I un- derstand it in the latter sense, as referring to his own blood ; for there seems no particular reason, why the sacrifice of Abel should be mentioned, rather than the Jewish sacrifices in general ; or the sacrifice of some particular person, as Samuel, Elijah, or So- lomon, of which God declared his acceptance in a more extra- ordinary manner than he did his respect to Abel's. This inter- pretation is illustrated and confirmed by what God saith to Cain, "The voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground," Gen. iv. 10, that is speaketh unto me for vengeance. So the martyrs are represented as crying to God to judge and avenge their blood. Rev. vi. 10. And on this interpretation the
 
contrast of opposition between " the blood of sprinkling," that is, the blood of Christ our sacrifice, and the blood of Abel, is more plain and striking. The latter spoke, or as it is said in the history, " cried," with a strong repeated cry (as the word there used signifies), for vengeance on Cairi, the murderer. But the blood of Christ speaketh better things ; pleads for mercy in be- half of sinful men, yea, even of those that shed it. For the further illustration of this important subject, I shall, I. Consider what the blood of Abel speaketh. II. What better things the blood of Christ speaketh; — and 86 orton's practical works. then apply the subject to practical purposes. Let us consider, I. What the blood of Abel speaketh. It cried to God for justice and vengeance against his brother Cain, who had cruelly shed it. The guilt of Cain in this horrid action was as great as we can well conceive. His conduct was unjust, unnatural, cruel, and impious to the highest degree. The law written upon his heart strongly forbad it. One would have thought, that the natural dread of shedding human blood, which man, even in his apostate state, feels, might have been sufficient to prevent his slaying any man, especially his brother. He knew death was the penalty of sin. He had seen beasts slain for sa- crifice, and perceived what terror and pain they felt when dying; which should have increased his abhorrence of putting a brother to death. His guilt was greatly aggravated by the consideration, that there were then but few men upon earth, and it wanted to be peopled. If Abel had a family, the distress and misery in which they were involved by his death, made the guilt of his murderer more heinous. But the most aggravating circumstance of all was, that Cain hated and slew him because he was more righteous than himself, and God had shown more regard to his sacrifice than to Cain's. So that it was desperately flying in the
 
face of the Almighty ; and because he could not be revenged upon God, he would be revenged upon his brother. o wonder an act of such horrid and complicated guilt was most provoking to God ; and that the blood thus cruelly shed, cried unto him. It cried unto him, as the author of life, and the righteous gover- nor of the world, who ordereth and disposeth of the lives of his creatures. It cried to him for vengeance against a wretch who had broken the law of the creation, and usurped the prero- gative of the Creator. It cried to him as a holy God, to whom the righteous sufferer was very dear, and in whose sight " the death of his saints is precious." Considering Abel's pious cha- racter, it is very probable that he poured out his dying breath in prayer for his cruel brother, that God would forgive him. But his blood cried for vengeance; that is, the circumstances of the case and the guilt of the murderer demanded a just retribution from the most High. So " the cry" of the sins of Sodom is said to " reach unto heaven ;" and in many places of scripture the same phrase is used. Before I dismiss this head, I would ob- serve, that this apostle saith that Abel, " being dead, yet speak- eth," Heb. xi. 4. He not only testifies, that there is a future state, and a reward for the righteous in it, but he warns all persecutors and murderers, intimates how great their; guilt is, and what a dreadful execution awaits them. If the blood of one righteous person cried for vengeance, how terrible will be their doom, who have " shed the blood ol the saints and mar- tyrs of Jesus in abundance !" How sad the case of the Romish churcli in particular, " in which," as St. John observes, " is found DIS. XI,] THE BLOOD OF SPRIKLIG. 87 the blood of prophets, and saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth," Rev. xviii. 24. The voice of so much blood crieth, and will be heard. And in the day when God comes to " make inquisition for blood," it will be the utter ruin of that cruel, persecuting church. Let us beware of this guilt ourselves. There is persecution of the tongue, cruel mockings and sneers of those who are more righteous than their persecutors. Dread the thought of having the blood of others crying against you.

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