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The Apostolic Benediction.

The Apostolic Benediction.

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Published by glennpease
BY REV. JOHN GUMMING, D. D.

*' Lord, dismiss us with thy blessing,
Fill our hearts with joy aud peace :
Let us each, thy love possessing,
Triumph in redeeming grace.
refresh us !
Travelling through this wilderness."

" The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the
communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen." — 2 Corin-
thians 13 : 14.
BY REV. JOHN GUMMING, D. D.

*' Lord, dismiss us with thy blessing,
Fill our hearts with joy aud peace :
Let us each, thy love possessing,
Triumph in redeeming grace.
refresh us !
Travelling through this wilderness."

" The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the
communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen." — 2 Corin-
thians 13 : 14.

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Published by: glennpease on Mar 26, 2014
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THE APOSTOLIC BENEDICTION. BY REV. JOHN GUMMING, D. D.*' Lord, dismiss us with thy blessing, Fill our hearts with joy aud peace : Let us each, thy love possessing, Triumph in redeeming grace. refresh us ! Travelling through this wilderness." " The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen." — 2 Corin-thians 13 : 14. These words close our services in the sanctuary every Sab-bath. They may fitly close every period of time. They are the most appro^Driate, because the most suggestive, commence-ment of every new period that comes round in the good prov-idence of God. Our services, our Sabbaths, our years, and each day's sorrows, should end, and every day's duties should begin, \fith this benediction. Let us pray that every year that is before us may carry with it, and have upon it, as it sweeps past, the grace of Jesus, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost. This benediction embosoms pardon for the past ; it unbosoms
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hope and peace and blessing for the future. It is seasonable to pronounce it at the close of one year ; it is most appropri-ate to pray it at the commencement of another. May it not only be to us in word, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, a benediction from heaven ! THE APOSTOLIC BLESSING. 295 A blessing so precious, so frequently heard, and by the apostle given as the close of the two most instructive epistles to the Corinthian church, is worth investigation. Let u£ open the cabinet, and ascertain its contents. Let us break the alabaster box, that its precious perfume may be diffused over the years and days to come, so that we may be refreshed and strengthened for the march of life. " The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ " is one-third of the benediction. What is this grace ? Literally and strictly, it means free favor, or God's dealing with man, not according to his merits, which would precipitate him only in disaster, but according to grace, a higher principle, unfolded in the Gospel, in spite of man's merits, and after the riches of God's liberality and sovereign love. We are told what grace means by its contrast. " The law was given by Moses, but grace
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and truth came by Jesus Christ," John 1 : 17. Therefore, when we pray that ours may be the grace of Christ, it means that we may receive all we need, in spite of what we deserve. It is a prayer on our part that those blessings promised by the law to them who perfectly, and without a faltering foot-step or wavering heart, keep the law, may descend upon us who have broken it, and are legally under its condemnation, but are brought by grace from beneath its ruins, and placed no more in law, but in Jesus Christ the Lord. This benedic-tion implores that the blessings which the law promised to them who were under the law and kept it may descend upon us, who, indeed, have broken the law, but are yet in Christ. Thus we have complete pardon, through the obedience of one, and are acquitted and justified as if we had kept the law invi-olate, and were each unimpeachable in thought or deed in the sight of a holy and heart-searching God. This grace, which the apostle prays may be with all God's people, shines and sparkles in every page of the sacred rec-ord. It is the glad music of every promise ; it is that which 296 THE APOSTOLIC BLESSING. gives its tone and coloring to the whole fabric and structure
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