The Blood of Jesus

By William Reid

Chapter 10


The Blood Of Jesus The Believer's Life And Peace

 NOW LEAVE OFF addressing myself specially to unconverted awakened, that I may lay a few thoughts before brethren in Christ who are awakening to a deeper sense of their obligations and responsibilities

We are living in a most important era of our world's history! How melancholy the condition, and how ominous of evil the attitude of earth's nations! Warlike powers confront each other, and the blood of their embattled hosts is shed in torrents. How persevering and successful is man in carrying forward his gigantic schemes and favourite movements! Strange is it also, that an all but universal cry for regeneration among earth's nations should be made simultaneously with a cry for the Holy Ghost to achieve for the professing Church a mighty spiritual revival.

We cannot help being stimulated in our exertions for the cause of Christ, by contiguity to unceasing earthly activity manifested on every side; but were this our only incentive to action, our zeal would be spurious; for all effort and activity in promoting the gospel which are the offspring of mere imitation, and originate only in proximity to the activity displayed by the world, instead of being based on personal faith in Christ and living communion with God, form nothing higher and nothing better than "a fair show in the flesh."

But we have reason to believe that a mighty breath of the Divine Spirit is now passing over the earth. The Church of the living God, scattered throughout the different denominations, has been feeling its influence; and the result of His gracious presence and quickening power is appearing in greatly increased religious activity and zeal for the conversion of souls. This is matter for thankfulness. We need to have a renewal of our youth that we may be healthy, fresh, and vigorous to engage energetically in the great work that is to be done for God in these eventful days that are now passing over us. And let us ever bear in mind that the grand prerequisite to thorough usefulness is, that we ourselves should be "strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and, length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God" (Eph. 3:16-19). If we would be filled with the grace of God and refreshed in our souls it is essential, at such a time as the present, that we should constantly recall and deeply ponder the great foundation-truths on which we rested at the time of our conversion. "Looking unto Jesus" (Heb. 12:2) is the most refreshing exercise in which we can engage; and the shortest road to genuine spiritual revival is by the cross of Calvary.

When the Rev. W. H. Hewitson was on his deathbed, and had several texts illustrative of the faithfulness of God quoted to him by a friend, he remarked after his friend had withdrawn : - "Texts like these do not give me so much comfort, as 'God so loved the world, that he gave his only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life,' (John 3:15); or, He that spared not his own Son but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?"(Rom. 8:32). Plain doctrinal statements, exhibiting the heart of God, are more sustaining to me than mere promises. I like to get into contact with the living person." This experience is very common in such circumstances. When the most intelligent Christian draws near to death, he feels that he can rest with confidence on nothing except the great elementary truths of God's glorious gospel, and the living person of His risen Son. And when we are in a state of spiritual decay; when our "soul is full of troubles, and our life draweth nigh unto the grave," (Ps. 88:3); when our - "spirit is overwhelmed, and our heart within us is desolate," (Ps. 143:4) there is nothing so reviving and invigorating as the leading fundamental truths of the gospel of Christ. The faithful saying, "that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief," (1 Tim. 1:15) is at once the means of reviving the Christian, and of giving life to the self-despairing sinner; for the gospel is "the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth," (Rom. 1:16). "None but Jesus" can avail us either for peace of conscience with reference to past transgressions, peace of heart with reference to present circumstances, or for peace of mind with reference to future prospects. This is not theory, but experience, as every child of God knows. Another writes:

I feel that nothing can do me good but personal contact with the living person of the Lord Jesus. Looking at systems and creeds - doctrines and duties - may be all very well in its own place, but if I am to be a healthy, fruit-bearing Christian, I must look steadily and confidingly to the great High Priest who assumed our nature to bear our sins and win our confidence. When, by faith, we are enabled to fix a steady gaze on Jesus, how little do we care for the smile or frown of the world! 'Looking unto Jesus' enables the worm Jacob' to thresh the mountains, and beat them small, and make the hills as chaff,' (Isa. 41:15). But I often feel that it is a very difficult matter to look away from myself, though I am sure I never get anything there to make me feel happy. No, all is in my Redeemer, and it is only when I am looking to Him as all my salvation' that I feel satisfied, and think I could face death with composure.

The late Lady Colquhoun was one who knew the preciousness and power of resting on Christ Jesus alone for peace, comfort, and salvation, and from personal experience she was "able to teach others also." Writing to a young friend, she gave this excellent counsel:

"As well in our winters as our summers the foundation standeth sure - Christ is all. With Him is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. Precious truth! Let us rest upon it, and cease from the vain endeavour to find anything in us that can give the shadow of hope. Abiding hope must be fixed on the object that changeth not. We change daily, hourly. He remains glorious in holiness eternally. And this perfection is in the court of heaven our representative. Can we want more? Shall we say, I will add a few of my virtues and graces to the account? When we are guilty of this folly, we weary ourselves seeking for them, for they cannot be found, and our harp hangs upon the willows. But we resume the songs of Zion when we look entirely from ourselves to the Lord our righteousness.' How is it with you, dear A.? Can you rejoice in the Lord always? If not, experience will teach you that living on frames and feelings will not do - that comfort ebbs and flows with them - and that you equally delude yourself when you take comfort from the feeling of nearness to God, or when you lose it because you lack that joy in devotional exercises, which is, nevertheless, extremely desirable, and much to be prized. This, however, is distinct from joy in Christ crucified, and in Christ our righteousness; and it is very possible to feel little heart for prayer, and to mourn an absent God, and yet to stand firm on the sure foundation, rejoicing in Christ, and never doubting that we are complete in Him.

The reason why many real Christians are harassed with doubts, fears, and darkness, is that they leave off leaning entirely upon their beloved Saviour, and rest part of the weight of their souls' eternal well-being, on their own experience. The fruits of righteousness wrought in us by the grace of the Holy Spirit are precious as evidences, but they cannot be trusted as grounds of salvation, unless with much spiritual detriment to our souls. Legh Richmond, writing to his mother, says:

Your occasional doubts and fears arise from too much considering faith and repentance as the grounds, rather than the evidences, of salvation. Our salvation is not because we do well, but because 'He in whom we trust hath done all things well.' The believing sinner is never more happy and secure than when, at the same moment, he beholds and feels his own vileness, and also his Saviour's excellence. You look at yourself too much, and at the infinite price paid for you too little. For conviction you must look at yourself, but for comfort at your Saviour. Thus the wounded Israelites were to look only at the brazen serpent for recovery. The graces of the Spirit are good things for others to judge us by, but it is Christ himself received, believed in, rested upon, loved, and followed, that will speak peace to ourselves. By looking unto Him we shall grow holy; and the more holy we grow, the more we shall mourn over sin, and be sensible how very far short we come of what we yet desire to be. While our sanctification is a gradual and still imperfect work, our justification is perfect and complete: the former is wrought in us, the, latter for us. Rely simply as a worthless sinner on the Saviour, and the latter is all your own, with its accompanying blessings of pardon, acceptance, adoption, and the nonimputation of sin to your charge. Hence will flow thankful obedience, devotedness of heart, etc. This salvation is by faith alone, and thus saving faith works by love. Embrace these principles freely, fully, and impartially, and you will enjoy a truly scriptural peace, assurance and comfort.


For if Christ be born within,
Soon that likeness shall appear
Which the heart had lost through sin
God's own image fair and clear,
And the soul serene and bright
Mirrors back His heavenly light.