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SCRIPTURAL LOCK AND KEY
TO THE PASSAGES
WHICH TESTIFY OF JESUS CHRIST
IN THE OLD AND NEW TESTAMENTS.
REV. WM. CARUS WILSON, M.
Rector of Whittington, and Incumbent of Casterton, Kirkly, Lonsdale.
RE-ARRANGEP, WITR AN INTRODUCTION.
HOULSTON AND STONEMAN,
65, PATERNOSTER ROW.
THERE are two great questions which you, youthful reader, ought to carefully consider. They are questions relative to the highest interests of your being, and your answers involve facts which invest your conduct with the most solemn responsibility. What then are these questions ?
The first is, DO I NEED A SAVIOUR ? To answer this requires the ascertaining of two facts; one fact, that of Peril, and the other, that of Impossibility of self-salvation.
Are you then in Peril ?—The Word of God says that you
It says that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. If all have sinned, you must be among the number. Despite your self-complacency, the Bible proclaims you a guilty transgressor of a holy law. Despite your endeavours to evade the charge by assertions of comparative innocence, the Oracle replies, that although you are not as other men are, yet that having offended in one point you are reckoned guilty.
Conscience, your own conscience, confirms the accusation, and echoes it within the chambers of your soul. Recollections of sinful thoughts words and actions flit gloomily across your mind. Fearful contemplations of the Divine Being indicate your want of moral repose. And the “aching void” which your heart is ever conscious of, even amidst the most exciting scenes of worldly pleasure, proves that you are afar off from God.
Can you deny the charge? Can you deny that you have already trembled at it, and wished, but dared not believe it untrue ? Have not the “Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin,” flashed in their awful brightness before your
If you are a sinner, you are in peril. For God has attached a penalty to every infraction of his law. Every lawgiver does so, or his laws would have no influence. The Divine Lawgiver therefore has given to his laws the most solemn sanctions which they can receive. He has declared that the soul that sinneth IT SHALL DIE. And what a death! A death that is always dying and yet never dead ! A death that does not refer so much to the body as to the soul, and inasmuch as the soul has capacities for feeling far above those of the body, indicating tortures which no metaphors can fully represent, and no language properly
describe. Fire may consume the quivering flesh, the worm may gnaw the yet conscious frame, but what is that quenchless Fire which the Mind shall feel, what is that undying Worm under which the Soul shall writhe!
Can you escape this peril? Not by any extenuating plea. To imagine that you have any is but to delude yourself by a transparent fiction. You cannot plead Ignorance, for the law is written upon your heart. You cannot plead Inability, for you know
have committed sins which you could have avoided. You cannot plead an amount of merit compensating the charge of demerits, for your righteousnesses are but as filthy rags.
Can you escape this peril ? Not by promises of future amendment. The Future is not the Past. If till your dying day you could keep from all sin, aye, from even a sinful thought, this would not obliterate the record of your guilt. God demands the holiness of a whole life, and by this supposition, you would only give him the holiness of a part of your life. This will not do!
Can you escape this peril? Not by mere repentance. Sorrow for a debt will not pay it. The thief's regret for having stolen will not save him from prison. The murderer has mourned in bitterness of feeling over his monstrous crime, but does justice on this account lay aside its avenging sword ? And can you hope by tears to pay God what you owe Him? Can you expect that regrets for the past will “deliver you from going down to the