Pristine Grace
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Is Christ Your High Priest?
by John Flavel

Is Christ your High Priest, and is his priesthood so indispensably necessary to our salvation? Then freely acknowledge your utter impotency to reconcile yourselves to God by anything you can do or suffer; and let the whole glory of your recovery be ascribed to Christ. It is highly reasonable that he that laid down the whole price, should have the whole praise. If any man say or think he could have made an atonement for himself, he doth therein cast no light reproach upon that profound wisdom which laid the design of our redemption in the death of Christ.

Do you see your necessity of this High Priest, and his most excellent sacrifice; and accordingly to make use of it? The best of you have polluted natures, poisoned with sin; those natures have need of this sacrifice, they must have the benefit of this blood to pardon and cleanse them, or else be eternally damned. Hear me, ye that never spent a tear for the sin of your nature; if the blood of Christ be not sprinkled upon your natures, it had been better for you that you had been the offspring of beasts.

Your actual sins have need of the great High Priest and his sacrifice to procure remission of them. If he take them not away by the blood of his cross, they can never be taken away; they will lie down with you in the dust; they will rise with you, and follow you to the judgement-seat crying, We are thy works, and we will follow thee. All thy repentance and tears, couldst thou weep as many as there be drops in the ocean, can never take away sin. Thy duties, even the best of them, need this sacrifice. It is in virtue thereof that they are accepted of God. And were it not that God had respect to Christ's offering, he would not regard thee nor any of thy duties. Thou couldst no more come near to God, than that thou couldst approach a devouring fire, or dwell with everlasting burnings. Well, then say, I need such a price every way. Love him in all his offices. See the goodness of God in providing such a sacrifice for thee. Meat, drink, and air are not more necessary to maintain thy natural life, than the death of Christ is to give and maintain thy spiritual life.

Oh, then, with a deep sense of gratitude in thy heart, let thy lips say, Blessed be God for Jesus Christ.

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