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And still the Saviour weeps
Over His people's sin, Because they will not let Him keep
Their souls He died to win ?
The Son of God in tears !
And shall our cheeks be dry ? Let floods of penitential grief
Burst forth from every eye.
The Son of God in tears!
Angels with wonder see.
He shed those tears for thee.
He wept that we might weep;
Each sin demands a tear :
And there's no weeping there.
The Glebenth Sunday after Trinity.
O God, who declarest Thy almighty power most chiefly in showing mercy and pity; Mercifully grant unto us such a measure of Thy grace, that we, running the way of Thy commandments, may obtain Thy gracious promises, and be made partakers of Thy heavenly treasure; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
THE EPISTLE. " For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the Church of God.”—1 Cor. xv. 9.
N early piety and following of Christ excel a late
repentance, however sincere, in several respects, but especially in the settled peace and security which invariably accompany it. For can any man be all at once as certain that he has truly repented, as that, before he repented, he was a vile sinner ? His hope for a time will not be without a mixture of fear, as his fear will not be without a mixture of hope. But even if the Holy Spirit (for we must not set bounds to His agency) do immediately so assure him of his acceptance with God, through Christ, yet who can express the humiliation and sorrow with which memory of the past shall inspire him? “I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the Church of God.” Who speaks these words of sorrow and shame? It is he to whom the Saviour, with a voice from heaven and brightness ineffable, appeared—he, the chosen vessel of the Lord-he who, in labourings and fastings oft, in peril by land and sea, prayed, and pleaded, and preached of Jesus,-he who, in life, having become a Christian and an apostle, in death was canonized a martyr and a saint. Such was the apostle's deep regret, which after-services could not obliterate; and shall not we, who likewise have turned to Jesus late in life, remember with shame how many blessings we despised, and how many opportunities of grace we squandered ? God will indeed pardon and accept the sincere penitent; He will, for Christ's sake, wink at past disobedience. But yet, after all, he who led by the Spirit, has, from his childhood, “walked with God,” will have a more lively faith ; his love will be without dread, his confidence without doubt; he will be more like God in this world, and (may we not believe ?) he will be placed nearer to Him in the world to come.
“And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.”_LUKE xviii. 13.
OUR blessed Saviour teaches us in this narrative
one grand essential of prayer-viz., humility. You must not indulge in high notions of your own sanctity. You must not, like the Pharisee, satisfy your conscience by comparison with others. Your cry must be, “God be merciful to me, a sinner.”
I'm a poor sinner, and nothing at all,
Approach, then, the footstool of grace with a firm persuasion of your own vileness ; and, as you turn your eye heavenwards, think with awe of the great Being that inhabits there. I stand before Him in whose presence seraphim veil their faces. I speak with Him whose throne is heaven, and earth His footstool. I breathe into the ears of a pure and Holy God thoughts which I could not, without a blush, unbosom to my sinful fellow man. Oh, pray for faith and humility
together, that you may be enabled, with one hand, to cling to the Cross of Jesus, and, with the other, to beat upon your breast, saying, “God be merciful to me a sinner!”
Lord, at Thy feet we sinners lie,
And knock at Mercy's door;
Thy favour we implore.
On us the vast extent display
Of Thy forgiving love;
This heavy load remove.
We sink with all this weight oppressed,
Sink down to death and hell;
Our numerous fears dispel.
'T is mercy, mercy, we implore;
O may Thy bowels move!
And Thou Thyself art love.
O for Thine own, for Jesus' sake,
many sins forgive!
And, breaking, soon relieve.
Thus melt us down; thus make us bend,
And Thy dominion own!
To repossess Thy throne.