“By his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.”—Hebrews 9:12
Ponder, my soul, these solemn expressions concerning thy Jesus. Mark, in them, their vast contents. Jesus, as a prophet, hath revealed his salvation: as a priest, he alone hath procured it, and offered it up to God and the Father; and as a King, he ever lives and reigns to see its efficacy fully accomplished in all his redeemed, being made partakers of it. Behold in this, his priestly office, both as an high priest and as the sacrifice, what he hath wrought, and what he bath accomplished – even eternal redemption. Mark, my soul, the several volumes of mercy comprised in it. First – Of man’s revolt from God. Secondly – The deadly breach by reason thereof. Thirdly – The proclamation from heaven, of God’s determined purpose to take vengeance of sin. Fourthly – Man’s total inability to appease the divine wrath, either by doing or suffering. Fifthly – Divine grace, in the love of the Father, permitting a substitute, competent to do this great act of salvation for men; and appointing and constituting no less a person than his dear Son to the accomplishment of it. Sixthly – Jesus, the Son of God, voluntarily giving himself an offering and a sacrifice for sin, and by that one offering of himself, once offered for ever, perfecting them that are sanctified. Seventhly – Having thus accomplished the purpose of salvation upon earth, Jesus now, by his own blood, entered into the holy place, to make the whole effectual by the exercise of his priestly office in heaven. And, lastly, to add no more – God accepting and confirming his perfect approbation of the whole, and now proclaiming peace on earth, good- will towards men. Ponder over these grand, these glorious, these momentous subjects, my soul, this day. Take them about with thee wheresoever thou goest; fold them in thy bosom; write them on the tablets of thine heart; let them arise with thee, and lay down with thee. And, in all thine approaches to the mercy-seat behold Him, and let him never be lost to the view of the eye of faith, by whom the whole is wrought, and of whom this sweet scripture speaks; who, “by his own blood entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.”
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."