If my friend asks what this law of liberty is, I will endeavour to show him. It is taken from the law of release, when the jubilee trumpet was to be sounded, and liberty to be proclaimed according to the tenor of the law. "If thou buy an Hebrew servant, six years shall he serve, and in the seventh he shall go free for nothing. If he came in by himself he shall go out by himself; if he were married, then his wife shall go out with him." Every poor elect sinner is like this Hebrew servant, he has sold himself for nought (Isa. 42:3); and is the servant of sin, and under the dominion of the law - two hard masters indeed, who show no favour; he that is under the dominion of sin is also under the law of death; he that is delivered from the power of sin, is delivered from the law also, as the apostle intimates, "sin shall not have dominion over you;" but why? "because you are not under the law, (which is the strength of sin) but under grace," which reigns through righteousness unto eternal life. In this state of servitude the sinner lies till the great trumpet is blown, Isa. 27:13; and the joyful sound reaches his ears, Psa. 89:15; by which Christ preached deliverance to captives, and sets at liberty those that are bruised with this yoke of hard service, (Luke 4:18).
--- William Huntington – published 1811
Excerpts from: THE RIGHTEOUS, GLAD IN THE LORD
How do the upright in heart give glory to God? Paul tells us, "We all, with open face, beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord," (2 Cor. 3:18). And then he shows us how it is accomplished; "God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ," (2 Cor. 4:6). And when is this? When God's glory comes into the heart. Can we give to the Lord what He has never given to us? It is presumption to suppose it. Is it possible to give to God what He has never bestowed? No; but when the appointed mercy comes, we can speak under the same influence as the Prophet did; "Arise, shine, for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD has risen upon thee," (Isa. 60:1). And O, when the glory of God's mercy is revealed to the soul, as shining in the Person, character, sufferings, death, resurrection, ascension, and intercession of a precious Jesus, and when the glory of His faithfulness, power, love, and wisdom is made known to our hearts, and we are brought to feel that we are interested in it, O what a glory it is to our souls! How we are lost and swallowed up in it! And how we are constrained to give the glory and honour of it to the Lord! So that when He puts this glory into our hearts, we feel the beauty of it, are enabled to glorify Him in body, soul, and spirit, which are His, and to give all the glory of salvation to a precious Jesus, by crowning Him Lord of all!
--- John Warburton – preached 1844
THE PEARL OF GREAT PRICE
“Goodly Pearls Sought”
"Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a Merchantman, seeking goodly pearls: who, when He had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that He had, and bought it." (Matthew 13:45,46)
What are pearls? White, shining, precious treasure found in the ocean. In the deep wide sea of this world the precious pearls of JEHOVAH are hidden until the time for their manifestation. In spots untraceable to human fisherman, that is, to Gospel ministers who are fishers of men, Christ seeks and finds His own. He holds the means in His own hands wherewith He brings them forth to light, life, love, and liberty in spiritual oneness with Himself.
What is the origin of the pearl? A distemper in the shell of the fish in which it is found. This cannot direct our minds to our Lord Jesus Christ. There was no distemper in His origin, no defect in His Person or perfections. It leads us at once to contemplate the Church of the living God, those sinners whom He seeks and saves by His rich and sovereign grace from all distempers, washes from all sins, and carries them to glory, to fill all heaven with unceasing praise and adoration. May we ever be kept humble before Him, remembering the hole of the pit whence we were digged, the rock from whence we were hewn, and the deep, dark sea of depravity from whence we were drawn. The sea is used by the Holy Ghost to illustrate the awful depravity of human nature throughout this wide world. See Isaiah 57:20,21: "But the wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt." Out of this sea, precious pearls are cast up at the command of Christ, and though they are surrounded with mire and dirt, they lose none of their value in His estimation. He came to seek, and seeking finds, and brings them to know something of their preciousness in Him and to Him, to share His grace down here, and at length, be partakers of His glory up yonder. The members of the Church of Christ are as pearls in His eyes, goodly, beautiful, graceful, and comely.