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Who will bless him ? The Lord. Think of his resources, how vast, how various, how glorious. The God of the universe, who has heaven for his throne, and the earth for his footstool, will bless the righteous. The Lord, who always acts worthy of himself, becoming the dignity of his character and the immensity of his wealth, will bless the righteous. The Lord, whose mercy is from everlasting to everlasting, who is full of compassion, and plenteous in mercy, will bless the righteous. The Lord, of whom we may well say, “I know that whom thou blessest is blessed." Think of his promises, so exceeding great and so very precious. Promises, the least of which no angel could make good. Promises, which embody the wealth of Deity, and provide for all the wants of humanity. Promises of spiritual blessings, and promises of temporal blessings; promises that provide for time, and promises that will never be exhausted in eternity ; promises which include all the good things of time, and all the glorious things of eternity. In blessing the righteous, God will perform and make good all his promises. "Think of his perfections, of his wisdom and power, his grace and justice, his faithfulness and truth, his mercy and love, his holiness and immutability, his omniscience and omnipresence, his self-existence and eternity, for all his perfections are to be employed or glorified in blessing the
righteous. He will bless them like a God. He will bless them so as as to bring the highest glory to his name and nature. What will he do? He will bless the righteous. His blessing maketh rich, for it puts the man in possession of all that is necessary to supply his wants, satisfy the cravings of his immortal nature, and raise him above his circumstances whatever they may be. His blessing dignifies with the highest honour. If he bless us, he adopts us into his family, and we become the sons and daughters of the Lord God Almighty. He unites us to the person of his Son, and we become members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. He constitutes us his portion, his peculiar treasure ; and calls us his jewels, and compares us to his crown. He gives us the most glorious titles, clothes us with the most gorgeous robes, crowns us with the most magnificent diadem, and entitles us to the most lofty privileges. His blessing makes happy, and entitles to heaven. Happiness results from a sense of his favour, flows from the manifestations of his love, and is enjoyed in perfection in his glorious presence. If God bless the righteous he will make him wealthy, honourable, and happy, far beyond our power to guess or ablity to conceive. How will he bless? Graciously, or with favour. He deals justly with all; he shows special favour to some. In his favour is life. From his favour flows every good and
perfect gift. To be God's favourite is an honour indeed. If God bless graciously, he looks for no reason in the creature why he should bless, but he does so gratuitously. If any qualification is necessary in order to enjoy his blessings, he gives the qualification; or, rather, the blessing itself produces the qualification. He will bless with pro. tection. The righteous are in danger, as earth and hell are leagued together against them. Sin, within them, Satan without them, and trials around them, place them in danger. They are in daily conflict. They must resist sin, conquer Satan, and overcome the world ; the law in the members is ever warring against the law of the mind, and requires watchfulness, vigilance, and zeal. How needful, then, a protector, a powerful ally-and the Lord is that. “ With favour will he compass them as with a shield.” The shield is an instrument to come between the person and danger, and the Lord's grace does this. It not only comes between, Sut it compasses, or surrounds the person, so that the believer is protected on all sides. His shield is strong, and cannot be broken ; hard, and cannot be pierced; saving, and always keeps safe. “İ, saith the Lord, will be a wall of fire round about, and will be the glory in the midst of her.” Thus our safety is of the Lord ; and Israel is saved in the Lord, with an everlasting salvation,
See. then, who are safe. The righteous.. Those who have received Christ by faith, who have put on Christ, -who stand before God accepted in the righteousness of his beloved Son. Why they are safe. God is gracious,—gracious to them,-and because gracious he blesses them. Blessing, he protects them efficiently, perpetually, for ever. What they should do. They should trust in the Lord at all times,—for ever,-because he is the refuge of of his people, and has everlasting strength. They should acknowledge him, and ascribe all their salvation, from first to last, to him. They should praise him : this he requires and this is all he requires. But it must be the praise of the heart, of the lip, and of the life. By Jesus, then, as our great High Priest, let us offer unto God the sacrifice of praise continually, which is the fruit of our lips, giving thanks unto his name.
Reader, are you righteous? Have you discovered that your own righteousness is but as filthy rags ? and have you therefore renounced it entirely, betaking yourself to the righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ P your own obedience is, must be imperfect; and an imperfect obedience will never justify you before a holy God. You must have a perfect righteousness or you are lost for ever, and this you can only have by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Believing, the whole work of Christ becomes yours; being interested in the perfect work of Jesus, you are justified; being justified, the Spirit of God is given you, to sanctify and make you meet for heaven; and as the effect of the work of the Spirit in your heart, you will live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present life ; you are righteous, and being righteous you are safe. God surrounds you with all the perfections of his nature, and will make good to you all the promises of his Word, and will set you before his face for ever. But if without Christ you are in danger, the greatest danger; and if you die without Christ you are lost for ever.
Happy souls, whoe'er believe
The embassy of peace;
The gift of righteousness :
The Lord is their almighty shield;
And then with glory fill'd.
And ruin all his race >
By suff ring in our place :
And answer'd all the law's demande:
The true believer stands.