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SERMON I.

ISAIAH liii. 1.

"Who hath believed our report ?”

THE prophet Isaiah foretold, that the Gospel of Jesus Christ would be rejected by those, to whom it was offered. And the history verified the prediction, simply because he who brought it into the world came not with victories and triumphs, but in the form of a servant. "He grew up," as Isaiah describes him, "small and of no reputation, from a family nearly extinct, like a tender plant springing unnoticed from its root, hid in a barren and dry land, out of which nothing eminent was expected. In the manner of his appearance he had no form or comeliness, none of the advantages

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of worldly grandeur, no ornaments of state to set him off; the usage he met with from the world, was even more discouraging than his poor and lowly appearance.'

"He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief." But although the prophets foretold, that Jesus should appear on earth in this form, still the Jews were not satisfied. And had there been no other proof, that this Jesus was the Son of God, their rejection of him might, to a certain extent, have been pardonable; but it was unpardonable, for every prophecy was at the exact time fulfilled. Was it prophesied, that Jesus should be born in Bethlehem ?-In Bethlehem was Jesus born. Was it prophesied, that a forerunner should go and prepare the for Jesus?-John the Baptist performed that office. Was it prophesied, that Jesus should be a preacher of righteousness? Righteousness was indeed the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins. Was it prophesied, that our Saviour should perform miracles? And do we require a Lazarus to spring up from the grave, or a

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