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A gospel song of the triumphs of Christ, and the church's triumphs in him: suited for all ages, for the whole of Christ's body, in one collected mass, and for each individual.
Reader! do not forget, that the day uniformly spoken of is the gospel day; the day of Jesus, and his salvation. And therefore, in every heart made blessed in that day by regeneration, a view of past sin, deserving God's just anger, and a conscious sense of redemption by the Lord Jesus, puts a new song in the mouth, and holy joy in the heart. Such was the joy of Zaccheas, when Jesus declared to him, This day is salvation come to this house! Luke 19:9 .
Reader! take especial notice of what the hymn expresseth; namely, that the Lord God is the sinner's salvation. It is not enough to say, or sing, that the Lord hath brought us to salvation, but that he himself is our salvation; not that we have salvation from him, but salvation in him. He himself is the whole of it. Reader! observe the twofold name upon this occasion; Jah, and Jehovah. I do not presume to say as much, but may it not, with reverence, be asked, Is it not to intimate the whole persons of the Godhead, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, as God, and Jesus Jehovah as Mediator? And how can any child of God who sings this song with the Spirit, and the understanding also, say otherwise, than I will trust and not be afraid? W hat can they have to fear, who have Jehovah in his threefold character of person for their salvation?
There is a great beauty in some of our old Bibles, which express this phrase of drawing water, as if it were out of the wells of the Saviour. Everything of grace is fetched by faith from Christ, and is in Christ. Ordinances are nothing without Jesus; and it is Christ himself; and not means of grace, however pure they are in themselves, that are the fountain and well of the soul. Hence the Church sings: A fountain of gardens, a well of living waters, and streams from Lebanon is my beloved! Song of Solomon 4:15 . Hence also, Jesus to the Samaritan woman, said, that the water he gave, should be in his people, a well of living water, springing up into everlasting life! John 4:14 .
Here the whole Church is supposed as engaged in this hymn of praise. In the former part, it was the song of one: I will praise thee. In this, it is, Praise ye the Lord. And they are not only praising Jehovah in songs of redemption themselves, but stirring up all others to the same devout and becoming exercises. Everything forms motives to praise Jehovah's glory in himself; Jehovah's glory in giving grace to his people; all, and every view of him, in the excellent things he hath done, demands the tribute of thanksgiving: and this is known in all the earth! Reader! think how wretched must that soul be, and how much the harp of melody in his own heart must be out of tune, that can find no cause in himself and his own experience to join the chorus!
This is a beautiful close to this rapturous gospel song. And let the Reader observe that expression, which tells the cause for which such shoutings of holy joy are to go forth; because great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst of his people. Not only great, and glorious, is Jehovah in himself; but great, and gracious also, in them. This is the blessed and additional cause of joy. And some have observed, and very properly too is the observation made, that as the word which is translated inhabitant, might have been rendered inhabitress; meaning the Church, and the females of Zion; here is a call upon both sexes, as well as all ranks and orders, to join in the chorus, as the Psalmist in one of the Hallelujah Psalms, expresseth it: Let both young men and maidens; old men and children, let all praise the name of the Lord, for his name alone is excellent; and his glory is above the earth and heaven, Psalms 148:12-13 .
MY soul! how art thou tuned in heart to sing this sweet song of the Church, and to join thy feeble note in the hymn of salvation, with all the Lord's redeemed ones? Surely none can be more conscious than thou art, that out of Christ, Jehovah's anger must forever burn against the sin and rebellion of thy nature; and if the Lord's anger be turned away, and he comforteth thee; is not this in Jesus, and by Jesus, and for the alone sake of Jesus? And canst thou not, my soul, look up, and say with the Church, both above and below, Behold, God is my salvation? For is not Jesus the almighty deliverer, by his blood and righteousness, from sin and sorrow, to holiness and joy? Is it not his holy hand, and his glorious arm, that hath gotten himself the victory? Did not God the Father graciously devise it; and God the Son purchase it; and
God the Holy Ghost make application of it to thy wants and circumstances? And conscious of thy personal interest in it, wilt thou not shout aloud, and, say; Behold, God is my salvation I will trust and not be afraid, for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song, he also is become my salvation!
And wilt thou not then, my soul, continually be drawing water from, the wells of salvation? Jesus himself is the well, even the well of living water, of which whosoever drinketh, shall live forever. And he, is an open well, a fountain not sealed to all his redeemed. Here life is found for quickening sinners, and for maintaining the life given to the languishing and dying frames of his saints. Lord! to these wells of salvation, even to thyself, blessed Jesus, would I pray for grace, daily, hourly to come; that by the wells of thy word, and in ordinances, by the influence of thine Holy Spirit, my soul may be like a watered garden from day to day, whose waters fail not: that Jesus may keep alive the grace he hath given, revive it when decayed, refresh it when languishing, and preserve it and perfect it unto life eternal. Oh! for grace thus to come, and to call others to come, and that the fathers unto the children, may declare his truth. Hither, ye poor, thirsty, famishing sinners, hither come to Jesus, the well of salvation, and draw no longer from the pools of your own righteousness! In Jesus alone the thirst of the soul finds satisfaction; and whosoever drinketh of him shall never thirst, but Jesus will be in him a well of water, springing up into everlasting life. Amen.
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Isaiah 12". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Fifth Week after Epiphany