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You see what it is to become a Christian. It is to employ Christ as your Advocate, by committing your cause entirely to Him. You can not be saved by your works, you can not be saved by your sufferings, by your prayers in any way except by the intervention of this Advocate. “He ever lives to make intercession for you.”
He proposes to undertake your cause; and to be a Christian is to at once surrender your whole cause, your whole life and being to Him as your Advocate.
2. He is an Advocate that loses no causes. Every cause committed to Him, and continued in His hands, is infallibly gained. His advocacy is all-prevalent. God has appointed Him as an Advocate; and wherever He appears in behalf of any sinner who has committed his cause to Him one word of His is sure to prevail. Hence you see,
3. The safety of believers. Christ is always at His post, ever ready to attend to all the concerns of those who have made Him their Advocate. He is able to save unto the uttermost all that come unto God by Him; and abiding in Him you are forever safe.
4. You see the position of unbelievers. You have no advocate. God has appointed an Advocate; but you reject Him. You think to get along without. Perhaps some of you think you will be punished for your sins, and not ask forgiveness. Others of you may think you will approach in your own name; and, without any atonement, or without any advocate, you will plead your own cause. But God will not suffer it. He has appointed an Advocate to act in your behalf, and unless you approach through Him, God will not hear you.
Out of Christ, He is to you a consuming fire. When the judgement shall set, and you appear in your own name, you will surely appear unsanctified and unsaved. You will not be able to lift up your head, and you will be ashamed to look in the face of the Advocate, who will then sit both as judge, and Advocate.
5. I ask, Have you retained. Him? Have you, by your own consent, made Him your Advocate?
It is not enough that God should have appointed Him to act in this relation.
He can, not act for you in this relation unless you individually commit yourself and your case to His advocacy.
This is done, as I have said, by confiding or committing the whole question of your salvation to Him.
6. Do any of you say that you are unable to employ Him? But remember, the fee which He requires of you, is your heart. You have a heart. It is not money, but your heart that He seeks.
The poor, then, may employ Him as well as the rich; the children, who have not a penny of their own, well as their rich parents. All may employ Him, for all have hearts.
7 He tenders His services gratuitously to all, requiring nothing of them but confidence, gratitude, love, obedience. This the poor and the rich alike must render; this they are alike able to render.
8. Can any of you do without Him? Have you ever considered how it will be with you? But the question comes now to this—Will you consent to give up your sins, and trust your souls to the advocacy of Christ? to give Him the fee that He asks—your heart, your confidence, your grateful love, your obedience?
Shall He be your Advocate of shall He not? Suppose He stood before you, as I do, and in His hand the book of life with a pen dipped in the very light of heaven, and should ask, “Who of you will now consent to make Me your Advocate?” Suppose He should inquire of you, sinner, “Can I be of any service to you? Can I do anything for you, dying sinner? Can I befriend and help you in any wise? Can I speak a good word for you? Can I interpose My blood, My death, My life, My advocacy, to save you from the depths of hell? And will you consent? Shall I take down your name? Shall I write it in the book of life? Shall it today be told in heaven that you are saved? And may I report that you have committed your cause to Me. and thus give joy in heaven? Or will you reject Me, stand upon your own defense, and attempt to carry your cause through at the solemn judgement?”
Sinner, I warn you in the name of Christ not now to say me nay.
Consent now and here, and let it be written in heaven.
9. Have any of you made His advocacy sure by committing all to Him? If you have, He has attended to your cause, because He has secured your pardon; and the evidence you have in your peace of mind. Has He attended to your cause? Have you the inward sense of reconciliation, the inward witness that you believe that you are forgiven, that you are accepted, that Christ has undertaken for you, and that He has already prevailed and secured for you pardon, and given in your own soul the peace of God that passeth understanding to rule in your heart? It is a striking fact in Christian experience, that whenever we really commit our cause to Jesus, He without delay secures our pardon, and in the inward peace that follows, gives us the assurance of our acceptance, that He has interposed His blood, that His blood is accepted for us, that His advocacy has prevailed, and that we are saved.
Do not stop short of this; for if your peace is truly made with God—if you are in fact forgiven—the sting of remorse is gone; there is no longer any chafing or any irritation between your spirit and the Spirit of God; the sense of condemnation and remorse has given place to the spirit of Gospel liberty, peace, and love.
The stony heart is gone; the heart of flesh has taken its place; the dry sensibility is melted, and peace flows like a river. Have you this? Is this a matter of consciousness with you?
If so, then leave your cause, by a continual committal of it, to the advocacy of Christ; abide in Him, and let Him abide in you, and you are safe as the surroundings of Almighty arms can make you.19
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