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Jesus the Same for Ever

Jesus the Same for Ever

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Published by GLENN DALE PEASE
BY WILLIAM EDWARD JELF, B.D.

Hebrews xiii. 8.
Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and for ever.
BY WILLIAM EDWARD JELF, B.D.

Hebrews xiii. 8.
Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and for ever.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Jul 05, 2014
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JESUS THE SAME FOR EVER BY WILLIAM EDWARD JELF, B.D. Hebrews xiii. 8. Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and for ever. iT is the natural result of the truth which breathes throughout a Divine Revelation, that Christianity gives us far more exalted ideas of the Supreme Being and all that belongs to Him than any of the other systems which have stood in the place of reli- gion to man. The God of the Christian is not a mere deified hero, or an abstract essence or power. The very fact, that we have no images of thought or speech whereby we can adequately represent God to ourselves, does but make Him known to us in His real nature as higher and better than any thing we can imagine. The heaven of the Christian is not a mere beautiful earth above the clouds — think of it as we may, we can form no real picture of it, and yet no Christian can think of it without the deepest in- terest and hope. If God and heaven are the proper objects of religious thought and feeling, then is the Christian blessed above all men, if it were only in having a true object of worship, a real resting-place for his souJ. LECTURE II. 39 And though God and heaven are thus presented to us in all their majesty, yet is the Christian's at- tention drawn to earth with an interest no less intense. It is not as in the so-called religion of old that we have put before us the creations of poetic fancy, which loved to people earth, sea, and sky with ideal divinities ; nor yet the fables of the grosser mythology, which gave to the gods the
 
desires, the enjoyments, the passions, and even the crimes of humanity ; nor yet are we taught to listen for the Divine voice coming forth from the caves or shrines which superstition assigned to the Divinity as its dwelling place on the earth. But the Christian's gaze is fixed on earth, as the place wherein our salvation was accomplished by Him who came down from heaven, God manifest in the flesh, living and dwelling in visible existence and shape, as man among men, the man Christ Jesus : on Him whose nature is so infinite, and whose functions so manifold, that they cannot be taken in with one glance of even the spiritual eye. God, Man, Son, Prophet, Priest, King, Sa- viour, Redeemer, Mediator, Judge, Sacrifice, Power, Word, Wisdom, Light, Life — what words shall fitly declare His glory, what mind fully conceive it ? It is no wonder then that when men tried to bring down this all-wonderful Being to the level of human understanding, to form of Him as consistent conceptions as they did of any of God's creatures, they were obliged to strip Him of His glories ; and thus while they were professing to be wise above 40 LECTURE II. others, they were shutting themselves out from the knowledge which others, more simple-minded, pos- sessed. Hence it is that from the very earliest times so many heresies sprung up as to Him who is the very Truth itself, from whom all truth springs. There was in Him of necessity from His very na- ture, from the very scheme of salvation, so much which reason could not comprehend or recon- cile, that men who would not be content with what the Bible told them, were obliged to solve
 
their difficulties by taking a partial and carnal view of Him, as their fancies, or lives, or circum- stances led them to look at Him exclusively from the one side or the other — How can He who is God be also man \ How can He who is God have died ? How can He who is subordinate to the Father be one with the Father? How can He who is eternal have ever been begotten ? These and the like diffi- culties, which are founded entirely on the notion that heavenly things differ in no respect from earthly, occupied the attention and made shipwreck of the faith and hope of thousands ; many a one whom God had gifted with His choicest natural gifts, whom He had embraced in His church, and brought to the living waters of scriptural truth, was led astray by a wayward love of system, a wayward impatience of submitting to what can not be understood or ex- plained, a wayward confidence in human perceptions, inferences, deductions. Where Christ was looking for adoration, there was nothing to be found or heard but philosophical questions and logical doubts as to LECTURE II. 41 those very points which the Apostles received and set forth in humble and thankful faith. These men would not receive the gospel until there was nothing left which their reason had not mastered. It seems to me that this was just the disputing and the wisdom against which St. Paul warned his children in the faith. Happy they who amid those perilous heresies listened to his warning, and throwing philosophy and vain deceit to the winds, shut their ears to those who would have robbed their faith of its deepest and highest objects of contem- plation. Strange that men should refuse to be borne upon the boundless ocean, unless they can fathom its depths ; that they should refuse to drink in the

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