Reynolds - BX5133.R42 S4 1831

ON HOSEA XIV. -- VERSES 5 - -7. 183 carried unto Christ to be healed, Christ did beyond the expectation of those that brought him, for he not only cured him of his disease, but of his sin, gave him not only health of body, but peace of conscience ; first, " Be of good cheer, thy sins be forgiven thee ;" and then, " Arise, take up thy bed, and go to thy house," Matt. ix. 2. 6. The thief on the cross be- sought Christ to remember him when he came into his kingdom, but Christ answers him far beyond his petition, assuring him that the very same day he should be with him in paradise, Luke xxiii. 42, 43. The poor man at the gate of the temple begged for nothing of Peter and John but a small alms, but they gave him an answer to his request far more worth than any other alms could be, namely, such an alms as caused him to stand in need of alms no longer, restored him in the name of Christ unto sound strength, that he " walked, and leaped, and praised God," Acts iii. 6. In like manner doth God answer the prayers of his people, not always it may be in the kind, and to the express will of him that asketh, but for the better, and conse- quently more to his will than himself expressed. Also, this should encourage us in prayer to beg for an answer, not according to the defect and narrow- ness of our own low conceptions, but according to the fulness of God's own abundant mercies. It would not please one of us if a beggar should ask of us gold, or jewels, silk, or dainties, we should esteem such a petitioner fuller of pride and impudence than of want. But God delights to have his people beg great things of him, to implore the performance of exceeding great and precious promises, 2 Pet. i. 4. to pray for a share in the unsearchable riches of Christ, to know things which pass knowledge, and to be filled with the fulness of God, Eph. iii. 8. 16. 18. to ask " things which e2