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stand in the house of the Lord. Lift up your hands in the sanctuary, and bless the Lord." (Ps. cxxxiv.) And if the Old Testament saints were thus called upon to unceasing praises, who only ministered in the shadow of good things to come; what. may be supposed ought to be the high sounding praises to our God, of those who are called to the sacred office, and to the ministry of the word, now in the substance? Surely, the church of our most glorious Christ, in the present day, both ministers and people, may well blush, and take shame, if when at any time, reading the animated strains which flowed from the lips and · hearts of those saints of God; we catch not an holy flame to warm our frozen affections, in aspiring after the same melody of soul. An employment so divine, so spiritual; living under the quickenings and renewings of the Holy Ghost; receiving manifestations. from Christ, and the Father in Christ: the daily, hourly, visits of the holy Three in One, and the personal knowledge of, and communion with, the grace. of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Ghost, cannot but induce a corresponding affection of soul. And when the Lord the Spirit makes a gracious revelation of the love of each glorious person in the GODHEAD to the soul; and at the same time draws out the lively actings of the soul, in a way of spiritual apprehension of the divine presence; then the glow of affection will burst from the heart, and the language will be like that of the apostle: "Unto God, only wise, be glory in the church by Christ Jesus, throughout all ages, world without end. Amen."
But while meditating on the blessedness of the church, both in her ministers and people; when we advance to the contemplation of the glorious Head of the church, in whom "dwelleth all the fulness of the GODHEAD bodily ;" we are not simply overwhelmed as.
the queen of the south was at the presence of Solomon; but like John, the beloved apostle," we fall at his feet as dead." Spiritual apprehensions of Christ, even in the moment the Lord is blessing his people with them, lay them low in the dust before. him; and while they rejoice in the view of his glory, they sink to the earth under a conscious sense of their own creatureship and sinfulness. "Woe is me! (said the prophet) for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts." But what answer did he receive? "Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged." (Isaiah vi. 5, 7.) Such a spiritual sense and apprehension of the person, and transcendent excellency of the Lord Jesus Christ, who " is the brightness of his Father's glory, and the express image of his person," surpasseth all description. What he is in himself, in his essential and underived glory, as " One with the Father, over all, God blessed for ever. Amen." What he is, in his compound nature, God and man in one : what he is in his mediatorial glory, having "finished transgression, made an end of sin, made reconciliation for iniquity, and brought in an everlasting righ teousness:" what he is " for his people; and what he is to his people;" filling all relations, being Head and husband, father, brother, friend; the mind of man is not competent to grasp such an infinity of object, and subject; and can only express adoration, love, and praise, in language like the church of old:"Blessed be the Lord God, the God of Israel, who only doeth wondrous things. And blessed be his glorious name for ever; and let the whole earth be filled with his glory." Amen and Amen. (Psalm lxxi. 18, 19.)
"And she gave the king an hundred and twenty talents of gold, and of spices, very great store, and precious stones; there came no more such abundance of spices as these which the queen of Sheba gave to king Solomon.
"And king Solomon gave unto the queen of Sheba all her desire, whatsoever she asked, beside that which Solomon gave her of his royal bounty. So she turned and went to her own country." (1 Kings x. 10, 13.)
NOTES AND OBSERVATIONS.
THE close of this beautiful memoir of the queen of Sheba visiting Solomon, ends, as it began, in furnishing subject of continual instruction to man, and everlasting praise to God. Spiritually considered, it is not the least instructive part of the history, in the barter made between these princes of the earth; in the giving and receiving from each other tokens of regard. She gave Solomon her choicest gifts. And he gave her (it is said) all her desire; "beside that which he gave her of his royal bounty." And is there not a mutual exchange between our most glorious Solomon, the Lord Jesus Christ; and our redeemed and regenerated souls? For though we have, indeed, nothing of our own to offer, and of his own, whatever the Lord enables us to bring, it is what we have first received from him, and that we return to him again; yet the bare acknowledgment of our nothingness, and his allsufficiency, is considered by the Lord as the best boon, in the humble and contrite heart; which God hath said, he will not despise." And, when under the unction of the Holy Ghost, we thus approach a throne of grace, it is our mercy when we come to him empty, to return full; to exchange our weakness for his strength; our ignorance for his wisdom; our uncleanness for his holiness; and our poverty for
his riches. And when the Lord doth by us, as Solomon did by the queen of the south; not only grant all that our spiritual desires can suggest ; but over and above all that we can ask or think, and which he sees proper for us, "of his own royal bounty;" Oh! the unspeakable blessedness of knowing, that "He is made of God to us, wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption: that according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord." (1 Cor. i. 30, 31.)
Before we finally leave the subject, it will be our wisdom to attend, once more, to what the Lord Jesus Christ said in relation to this woman arising at the last day, to condemn the conduct of the men of that generation; who, when the Son of God himself was the preacher, manifested a fastidious contempt both to his person and doctrine; and stopped not so much as to hear "the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth." And what an accuniulation of reproach, and everlasting condemnation, must finally overtake the Christ despisers of the present, as well as the past age, since Christ's days; yea, and every following generation yet to come; who refuse both Him that then spake on earth, and is now speaking, by his Holy Spirit, from heaven!
The Lord give (if it be his blessed will) grace both to him that writes, and to him that reads the history of this woman, with our Lord's own appprobation of her conduct; that prompted by her example, we may delight to attend the courts of the Lord's house, and "the place where his honour dwelleth :" and under every means of grace of the Lord's own appointment, remember his words: “ that a greater than Solomon is there." For my own part, I desire to exercise a continual jealousy over my own heart in this particular; and not only in means of grace, but in providences also; in short, in any thing, and in every
he is not.
thing in gospel truths, to be on the look out for Jesus ; and to consider all but a vacuum, and emptiness, where For unless Jesus be in the most innocent of our earthly comforts, there can be no real enjoyment in them. And where he is not, happiness is not. His person is essential to make that blessed which is called so; but which, without them, wants the real sweetness of all. Very blessedly he saith himself, "Riches and honour are with me; yea, durable riches, and righteousness. That I may cause them that love me to inherit substance; and I will fill their treasures." (Prov. iii. 18, 21.) And if the reader hath found his blessedness, and is himself satisfied with our most glorious Christ, as the queen of the south was with Solomon, in returning as she did, with her servants to her own country; let him, as he riseth up from the view of Christ, speak of his worth; made known his name; proclaim his salvation among the people; and as the Scripture beautifully expresseth it: "Let the fathers to the children make known his truth." (Isaiah xxxviii. 19.)