“Jesus Christ; the same yesterday, and to-day, and forever.”—Hebrews 8:8
Precious truth to open the year with, and to keep constantly in view amidst all the fluctuating and changeable circumstances arising both within and without, and all around! My soul, meditate upon it: fold it up in thy bosom to have recourse to as may be required. Contemplate thy Redeemer as he is here described. He is Jesus, thy Jesus; a Saviour, for he shall save his people from their sins. He is Christ also; God thy Father’s Christ, and thy Christ: the Anointed, the Sent, the Sealed of Jehovah. He is the same in his glorious Person, the same in his great salvation:—”Yesterday;” looking back to everlasting: “To-day;” equally so through all the periods of time: “For ever;” looking forward to the eternity to come. And, blessed thought, he is the same in his love, in the efficacy of his redemption; his blood to cleanse, his righteousness to justify, his fulness to supply grace here and glory hereafter. And what sums up the precious thought; amidst all thy variableness, thy frames, thy fears, doubts, and unbelievings, he abideth faithful. He is, he will be, he must be Jesus. 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."