“Christ hath given himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God, for a sweet-smelling savour.”—Ephesians 5:2
If, when Noah offered by faith his sacrifice at the coming forth from the ark, the Lord smelled a sweet savour in it, because both the ark and sacrifice were a type of his dear Son, how fragrant and acceptable must have been the substance, when Jesus offered himself without spot to God? Behold him by faith, my soul, in that hour, in the full incense of his own merit, the censer of his own offering, and the golden altar of his own nature. And while God, even the everlasting Father, accepts Jesus as thy Surety, in the fragrancy of his offering, wilt thou not by faith so apprehend the sweet influence of his person, work, and righteousness, as to rejoice before God in the sure acceptance of thyself and all thy poor offerings in the Beloved? Oh let a throne of grace be a daily, hourly, testimony for thee, that all thy approaches here are under the incense and intercession of Jesus; and all thine hopes and expectations of glory hereafter, are all founded in him and his finished salvation. Yes, thou Lamb of God! let all witness for me, that thou and thou alone, art the Lord my righteousness, and that I seek salvation in no other; most perfectly assured from thine own Spirit’s teaching, that there is no other name under heaven, given among men, whereby we must be saved. Hallelujah.
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."