365 days with Newton


His name like ointment

‘Thy name is as ointment poured forth.’ Song of Solomon 1:3

This name is compared to ointment. These were more frequent in use, and many of more costly composition, than common amongst us.
Some were healing, applied to wounds and bruises and putrefying sores. Now the sinner, when he is awakened and comes to himself, finds himself like the man (Luke 10) stripped and wounded and half dead. Jesus, like the good Samaritan, comes with an eye of pity to pour in the ointment of his name. This is a certain and the only cure for the wounds of sin. Many can witness to this. How, when they began to feel their misery and see their danger, they made use of many means, but found them all physicians of no value. Like the woman in the Gospel, when they had spent all their time and strength in this way, they were no better but rather grew worse. But this ointment made them whole.
Some were cordial and reviving. The believing soul is subject to fainting—it has but little strength and meets many discouragements—but is relieved from time to time by the good savour of this ointment. The name of Christ refreshes it with new strength under the remains of sin, assaults of Satan and troubles of life.

FOR MEDITATION: O the name of Jesus—indeed it is as ointment poured forth.
[John Newton to Thomas Haweis, Liverpool, May 1763]

How sweet the name of JESUS sounds
It makes the wounded spirit whole,
In a believer’s ear!
And calms the troubled breast;
It soothes his sorrows, heals his wounds,
’Tis manna to the hungry soul,
And drives away his fear.
And to the weary rest.


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