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Here, then, is a perfect model for our conduct, when called to fulfil difficult duties, or when we are visited with trying and afflicting events in life. Here is our great example, and we must follow his steps, we must walk as he walked, and thereby, as St. John assures us,* surely shall we know, whether we are indeed his people, or not, whether we abide in him, or not. The same mind, therefore, must be in us, which was in Christ Jesus; the same great principle which governed all his conduct, must govern ours, even love to God the Father, and love to his fallen creatures.

It was for this cause he gave himself for us, and endured so much on our behalf. "He loved us." He loved mankind to a degree, of which we can neither feel all the strength, nor discover the full perfection and beauty.

To lessen the miseries, to advance the happiness of the human race, was the one employment of his life. Every word that he spake, every act that he engaged in, had this for its end; and sustained by this principle, he steadily pursued the great work which his Father had given him to do, and bare, with perfect meekness, the injuries and contradictions of men.

And now let us once more "consider Jesus" in this cheering point of view, that we may be encouraged and animated in our future Christian course. It is, certainly, very encouraging, when we see others, who are in the same trying situation * 1 John ii. 3, 6.

with ourselves, acting with firmness and resolution; we persuade ourselves that the dangers are not so great as we imagined, and we feel a generous ambition to equal them, and in the attempt to do so, we are led on to exertions of which we thought ourselves incapable. It is thus, that the view of Jesus, steadily persevering in all the duties which were assigned him, may animate and encourage us. Much, indeed, was required of him, which is not within our reach; but as to all those things which, in the course of providence, we may be called to do, or suffer, Jesus Christ has shown that they are not beyond the powers which God affords us in our present state.

He was possessed of powers which do not belong to man, "All power was given to him." He stilled the "winds and the waves" to his command; all nature was obedient. But then we should remember, that he never employed those powers to render any difficult duty more easy for himself, or any suffering less severe. He multiplied "the loaves to feed the fainting multitude," but he would not, to relieve himself, command "that the stones be made bread." He readily healed the diseased and tormented, but, though "in all things made like unto his brethren," he himself bore the extremity of bodily pain, without exerting his miraculous power to lessen its severity or shorten its duration, and at last resigned himself to the violence of wicked men, with no other defence, no other support, than that of Divine

grace, and those heavenly principles which the humblest of his followers may, through his mediation, attain.

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Surely, then, from these views of his conduct, he intended that we should draw encouragement; he passed through so many and painful scenes, that, amidst our tribulation, he might be enabled to say, "Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world; and having gained the victory, being raised to glory with the Father, and "declared to be the Son of God with power,' ""* we may now, with the eye of faith, behold him "for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour,"† and this will, above all things, animate us amid the difficulties and trials which we may yet experience in following his steps. In him, God hath shown how he will deal with all his faithful servants; all of them shall be "conformed to the image of his Son;" like him, they may be called to very difficult duties; like him, they may be subjected to very painful sufferings, but like him, also, they shall, at last, be honoured and rewarded. Thus, we see in him, not only a model for our conduct, but an evidence, that under the wise and gracious government of God,


a patient continuance in well doing," shall, through the Divine mercy, "lead to glory, honour, and immortal life."‡

In Jesus, laid in the grave, raised from the dead, and seated at the right hand of God, we behold a Rom. ii. 7.

* Rom. i. 4. + Heb. ii. 9.

sure pledge, that all who like him, "endure unto the end;" all, who are truly united to him; all, who are members of his body, and partakers of his Spirit, shall, like him, be raised from the dead, and shall "enter into the joy of their Lord."

Wherefore, ye "who are partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of your profession;" yes, let us, one and all, as we may have opportunity; as Divine grace permits us, enabling us to lift up our dull affections from the things of earth to so high and holy an object, let us, for the time to come, "Consider Christ Jesus."

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"The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?

WE find St. Paul, in the former part of this chapter, endeavouring to dissuade the Corinthians

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