Robert Hawker's Poor Man's Morning Portions

September 17—Morning Devotion

“Brethren, pray for us.”—1 Thessalonians 5:25

My soul, mark how earnestly the apostle sought an interest in the prayers of the faithful. And if so eminent a servant in the church of Jesus thus entreated to be remembered by the brethren at the mercy-seat, how needful must it be that the brethren should remember one another; not only ministers to pray for the people, but the people for their ministers. “Brethren, pray for us,” should be the constant request of every lover of Jesus. Methinks I would ask every one that I knew to be a constant attendant at the heavenly court, to speak for me to the king when he was most near, and in the enjoyment of his presence. Tell the Lord, I would say, that his poor prisoner needs his alms, longs for his grace, and is waiting the anxious expectations of his visits. Beg for me, that I may live always under the blessed tokens of his love, that I may be ever living near the Lord, and strong in the grace which is in Christ Jesus. And do tell his Sovereign Majesty that the one great object of my soul’s desire is, that I may have increasing views of the infinite dignity of his person, work, merit, offices, relations, characters, and in short, every thing that relates to one so dear, so lovely, so glorious, and so suited to a poor sinner, as the Lord Jesus Christ is in all things. And do add for me, that my humble suit is, that after he hath given me all in gifts and graces that he sees needful for me in my pilgrimage state, that Jesus will give me yet more than all, by giving me himself, and causing my heart to be dissatisfied with all but himself; for until Jesus himself be my portion, I still have not what I want. It is not enough to give me life; but he himself must be my life. It is not enough to give me rest, unless he himself is my rest, and I rest in him. Precious Jesus! I would say, in thyself is all I need: all to pardon, all to justify, all to sanctify, all to glorify, all to satisfy, all to make happy here and for ever. Brethren, let this be your prayer for me, and it shall be mine for you; that Jesus be the all in all of our souls, and our portion for ever.

Robert Hawker (1753-1827) was an Anglican (High-Calvinist) preacher who served as Vicar of Charles Church, Plymouth. John Hazelton wrote of him:

“The prominent features…in Robert Hawker's testimony…was the Person of Christ….Dr. Hawker delighted to speak of his Lord as "My most glorious Christ.” What anxious heart but finds at times in the perusal of the doctor's writings a measure of relief, a softening, and a mellowing? an almost imperceptible yet secret and constraining power in leading out of self and off from the misery and bondage of the flesh into a contemplation of the Person and preciousness of Christ as "the chiefest among ten thousand and the altogether lovely." Christ and Him crucified was emphatically the burden of his song and the keynote of his ministry. He preached his last sermon in Charles Church on March 18th, 1827, and on April 6th he died, after being six years curate and forty-three years vicar of the parish. On the last day of his life he repeated a part of Ephesians 1, from the 6th to the 12th verses, and as he proceeded he enlarged on the verses, but dwelt more fully on these words: "To the praise of His glory Who first trusted in Christ." He paused and asked, "Who first trusted in Christ?" And then made this answer: "It was God the Father Who first trusted in Christ."

Robert Hawker on the Biblical Covenants (Complete)
Robert Hawker's Poor Man's Morning Portions