“Behold, I send an angel before thee, to keep thee in the way, and to bring thee into the place which I have prepared. Beware of him, and obey his voice, for my Name is in him.”—Exodus 23:20, 21
Who can this be, my soul, but Jesus? He, and He only, who is the whole of the covenant, is also the Messenger and the Angel of the covenant. Jehovah hath never put his name in any other; neither given his honour to any other. But in Jesus he is eternally well pleased, and hath given all things into his hand. Pause then, my soul, and contemplate this holy, this blessed, this only- begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. I see in Him all the glory, the sovereignty, the wisdom, grace and goodness of the Father, and he is Jehovah’s salvation to the ends of the earth. And wilt thou then, my gracious God and Father, send Jesus before me in all my way, to keep me, to guide me, and to bring me in, to behold thy glory in the face of Jesus Christ, and to dwell with thee for ever? Oh Lord Jesus! I would desire grace so to beware of thee, so to love thee, so to obey thee, so to adore thee, so to make thee my all in all, my life, my love, my joy, my present, my everlasting hope and portion, that in life and death, in time and to all eternity, Jesus maybe my glory and salvation for ever and 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."