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like him are totally destituté, and were it not for the bread which cometh down from heaven, spiritual starvation, with all its woeful consequences, would ensue. Without Jesus and his salvation we perish. "Neither is there salvation in any other: "for there is none other name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved.”*
2. Bread is universally acceptable to every pal
ate, and is a term frequently used for what is most agreeable to the taste or suited to the appetite; and in this point of view, Jesus is the bread of life. In him there is that which is pleasant to all who taste: this fact receives a full confirmation in every age of the world, and among all classes of society.
Patriarchs, prophets, apostles, and private believers, in every successive period of time, did all eat the same spiritual meat, and did all drink the same spiritual drink; (for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock also was Christ.) Abraham rejoiced in these provisions, he saw them and was glad. The language of all the prophets witnessed that this food alone would satiate the hungry soul, and the common invitation of the church has been, "Whosoever will let him "come and take of the bread of life freely." What
* Acts, iv. 12.
ever minor differences subsisted, as at our various tables, food of several kinds is prepared, but bread is always present, all, all agreed in accepting and eating abundantly of the bread of life..
And thus also in the present day, however diversified may be the rank, civil or intellectual; however various the attainments of property or power; or however remote the abode, separate in denomination, or different in prosperity or adversity are the disciples of Jesus, they all unite in one point,. embracing the eternal Son of God as the only provided remedy for a guilty world. Yes, the truth exceeds the type, for bread is not so universally used, as the Savior is exclusively believed upon by every person who hath life eternal.
Finally. Our Lord styles himself living bread, to denote that boundless and inexhaustible stores of every requisite and suitable sustenance may be found in him. Living streams are contradistinguished in the scriptures, from all waters which are precarious or limited in their supply. Yes, in Jesus and his salvation there is support for all who ever did, or shail come to him in faith. His fulness is unwasting; to him the spirit is committed without measure; with him are hidden the treasures of wisdom, knowledge; he is made to the church wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctifica
tion, and redemption. One sun illuminates the whole world.
But it is time to proceed in the second place to notice the advantageous consequences of receiving the Savior, as specified in the text, "He that com"eth unto me shall never hunger: and he that be"lieveth on me shall never thirst."
Hunger and thirst, especially if excessive in their degree, are among the severest of human sufferings, and unless relieved, inevitably occasion death; with the most excruciating pains, and under the most terrific forms. The gastric juice, that powerful solvent, prepared by nature for digesting what is thrown into the stomach, preys upon, and devours that organ. Hence arises that gnawing anguish which is termed hunger.
Analogous to these sufferings are the mental miseries endured by all who have no appropriate food for their souls. Such however as accept the Savior, as freely offered in the gospel, hunger no more; that is,
1. Their unhallowed and soul-destroying appetite after carnal objects, is abated, if not annihilated; is moderated, if not entirely reduced. The deathblow is then given to such excessive attachments;
interested in the prayers of Jesus, though in the world they are not of it; they weep as though they wept not; they rejoice as though they rejoiced not; they buy as though they possessed not; and though they use the world, they do not abuse it. Their affections are mortified, the earthly appetite languishes and expires, they hunger no more.
And what is it, my friends, effects this mighty change, but the sight of the Savior of the world, Jesus Christ, who expired on Calvary to destroy
our enmity to God, and to correct our vitiated palate, to restore health to us as at the beginning? Judge on this question by a reference to your own experience; when are your affections most weaned from this perishing world, from the gaudiness and pomp of this earthly pageant, but when the wondrous cross is surveyed by the eye of appropriating faith; when in other words you eat of the bread of life. Yes, each of you say,
"Then am I dead to all the globe,
"And all the globe is dead to me."
2. They shall never hunger, intimates further, that their improved and noble desires shall be ever satisfied. Blessed'are they that hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled. I would even include in this declaration a promise that all temporal necessities should be relieved, for
our heavenly Father knoweth that we have need of such things. The well ordered covenant, provides always, that our bread shall be given us, and water made sure but certainly the assurance in the text warrants our hopes and expectation that every spiritual succour shall be granted. Strength for duty, patience under suffering, fortitude to bear trials, and courage to resist temptations, consolation in adversity, and confidence in death, shall be readily bestowed. Grace and glory. Delight thyself in the Lord, and he shall give thee the desires of thy heart.
Again 3dly. Our Lord's declaration unquestionably contains the promise of eternal refreshment in that state, where, "They shall hunger no more, "neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun
light on them, nor any heat. For the Lamb, "which is in the midst of the throne, shall feed "them, and shall lead them unto living fountains
of waters; and God shall wipe away all tears "from their eyes."* Blessed is he that shall thus eat bread in the kingdom of God. None of the pain or privations of the present state shall affect them.
But it was proposed that in the third place, we
* Revelation, vii. 16, 17.