This is his name: "He shall be called, The Lord our righteousness." Jer. 23:6. To this end he is given to us,
1. As our propitiatory sacrifice: "The propitiation for our sins." 1 John 2:2. "Christ our passover." 1 Cor. 5:7. "The Lamb slain from the foundation of the world." Rev. 13:8. Our price, our ransom, to satisfy justice, pacify wrath, discharge from the curse; to blot out the handwriting, break down the wall of partition; to finish the transgression, to make an end of sins, to make reconciliation for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, and so to bring us to God. Whatever difficulties appear in thy way, whatever doubts arise in thy heart, from thy sins, from thy guilt, from thy poverty, from thy impotence—whatever objections thy fears may hence put in, the blood of the Lamb will answer all. Christ our passover is sacrificed for us.
2. As a merciful and faithful High-priest, Heb. 2:17, who has made an atonement for us in the earth, and appears for us in heaven; who has made reconciliation for us, and makes intercession for us, "to appear in the presence of God for us." Heb. 9:24. We read, Exodus 28:12, 29, that Aaron, as the type of Christ, was to bear the names of the children of Israel engraven in stones upon his shoulders and upon his breast-plate, when he went into the holy place, for a memorial before the Lord continually. Our Lord is entered into the heavens, to appear in the presence of God with our names upon his shoulders and upon his heart, for a memorial before the Lord: the least of saints has his name there engraven.
"Here is my ransom, Lord," saith Christ, "and behold my ransomed ones. Here is my price and my purchase, my redemption and my redeemed. Whatever accusers there be, whatever charge be laid against them, whatever guilt lies upon them, here are the shoulders that have borne all that was their due, and paid all that they owe; and upon these shoulders and in this heart thou mayest read all their names; and when thou readest, remember what I have done for them, acquit and absolve them, and let them be accepted before thee for ever. Remember the tears of these eyes, the stripes on this back, the shame of this face, the groans of this body, the anguish of this soul, the blood of this heart; and when thou rememberest, whatever name thou findest engraven upon this heart and upon these shoulders, they are the persons whose all these are; and whatever these are, whatever acceptance they have found with thee, whatever satisfaction thou hast found in them, put it upon their account; never let me be accounted thine Accepted, if they be rejected; never let me be accounted righteous if they lie under the imputation of wicked. If they be not righteous in my righteousness, I must be guilty under their guilt. Whatever I am, whatever my satisfaction is, all is theirs; for them I plead, for them I pray; my tears, stripes, wounds, groans, anguish, soul, blood, all cry and say, Father, forgive them; Father, accept them."
Of all cries there are no such strong cries as the cry of blood, and that whether it be against or for the guilty; its voice shall be heard on high. "Thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground." Gen. 4. And what followed? Woe to those persons against whom blood crieth. But where blood, such blood cries for them, for pardon, for mercy, blessed are those souls.
Christian, this blood is for thee: it "speaketh better things than that of Abel." Heb. 12:24. It pleads, sues, presses for thy discharge from all that is upon thee. Thou hast many cries against thee: Satan cries, thy sins cry, thine own heart and conscience cry against thee, and thou art amazed at the dreadful noise they make; but behold, the blood of the Lamb, who is God, cries for thee. Thou hast an accuser, but thou hast an Acquitter; thou hast adversaries, but thou hast an Advocate: "An Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous, who is the propitiation for our sins." 1 John 2:1, 2. "Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea, rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us." Rom. 8:33, 34.
He is a merciful and a faithful High-priest. No dignity to which he is exalted above thee, no distance to which he is removed from thee, can make him forget his friends; he is gone into the heavens, and is there exalted far above all principalities and powers, and set down at the right hand of God. He is gone, but he hath carried thy name with him as a perpetual memorial for thee. Thou art unfaithful; shame to thee! thou forgettest thy Lord at every turn; every business that comes, every trouble that comes, every pleasure that comes, every companion that comes, makes thee forget thy Lord, forget his love, forget thy duty: O, how small a matter will steal thy heart from him; yea, stir up tumults and rebellions against him. Thy comforts, thy hopes, thy needs which thou hast daily from him, will not all prevail to hold him in remembrance with thee. Thou forgettest thy Lord, but he will not forget thee; though thou hast been unfaithful in many things, yet he is in nothing. "Yet he abideth faithful; he cannot deny himself." 2 Tim. 2:13. He would not be true to himself, if he be not faithful to thee; his interest lies in thee; thou art his, his possession, a member of his body, fear not; if he should be unfaithful to thy soul, he is therein unfaithful to his own body. If thy case be such that he can help thee, if there be any thing wherein he can stead thee—if all that he has, his blood, his righteousness, his interest with the Father, will be sufficient for thy help, he has undertaken to procure it for thee and secure it to thee. Faithful is he that has called you, and will do it.
This now is that Jesus who is given unto us, as our propitiatory Sacrifice, as our merciful and faithful High-priest, who suffered on the earth, and is gone into the heavens for us; standing in his red robes, garments rolled in blood—with the glorious white inscribed upon the red—pardon, peace, absolution, acceptance; with the names of his ransomed ones engraven upon his heart and upon his shoulders: this is that Jesus, who is the Lord our righteousness.....
Rev. Richard Alleine