“One like unto the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle.”—Revelation 1:13
My soul, thou art going this morning to the throne of grace, art thou not? Pause then, and behold Jesus as John saw him, for the church’s joy, in his priestly vestments; for remember he is still a priest upon his throne, and by the oath of Jehovah, abideth a priest for ever. Nay, my soul, be not afraid, draw nigh; hark, surely he calls. Methinks he speaks to thee’ Behold me! behold me! See, I am thine intercessor. For this cause I wear these priestly garments; and as the high priest of old represented me, I appear in them down to the foot, and the golden girdle round and beneath the breast. What is thy cause? What blessings and praises hast thou to offer for past grace? And what supplications for present and future favours? Behold my vesture dipped in blood. Think of the everlasting efficacy of my righteousness: and for whom should I make intercession but for transgressors?’ Fall down, my soul, with holy reverence and godly fear. Jesus will do by thee as he did by John. He will lay his right hand upon thee, and say, “Fear not.” Oh precious, precious Lord, thou art, indeed, he that was dead, and now livest for evermore. Arid thou livest to see the fruits of thy great salvation faithfully and fully applied to every one of thy redeemed. Thy priesthood is for ever. Thy intercession unceasing. I do behold thee, Lord, by faith, even now standing with the blood of the covenant in thine hand, and presenting me, even me, poor, wretched, worthless me, as one of the purchase of this blood. Do I not hear thy voice in those soul-reviving words, “Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me? Father, I will that they also whom thou hast given me be with where I am?” Oh glorious, gracious, Almighty High Priest[ thou art, indeed, “a priest for ever, after the order of Melchisedec.” Oh ye trembling souls! ye who have any cause this day to bring before the court of heaven, look unto Jesus, look within the veil, see Jesus there; look steadily, though humbly, and behold his hands, his side; Zion is still engraven on his palms. Nay, do we not see, may we not read our very names, as the high priest bore the names of Israel on his breast, while his hands are lifted up to bless! Yes, Jesus takes up our cause, bears our persons, and all our concerns. And how shall either fail, while he “is able to save to the uttermost, all that come to God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession.”
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."