William Jay (1769-1853) ministered in Argyle Chapel, Bath, for more than sixty years. As well as being a link between the the ministries of the Wesley brothers and George Whitefield and the early ministry of CH Spurgeon. He was close to some of the most influential Christians of his era including John Newton, William Wilberforce, Thomas Chalmers and Rowland Hill. His writings, particularly his morning and evening devotions for the closet are overflowing with insightful, challenging and comforting thoughts.

“ ‘And there was Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, sitting over against the sepulchre.’ Let us sit by them and contemplate. There lies in that rock He that made it. There are sealed up the lips which said, Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. There are closed, the eyes which always beamed compassion, and wept for human woe. There, cold, are the hands which were laid on little children, to bless them, and that delivered the widow’s son to His mother. There lies the Life of the world, the Hope of Israel. He was fairer than the children of men – He was the image of the invisible God – He went about doing good – He was rich, and for our sakes became poor.

‘Come ye saints, and drop a tear or two,
For Him who groaned beneath your load,
He sheds a thousand drops for you,
A thousand drops of richer blood’

On the tombs of mortals, however, illustrious, the humbling sentence is inscribed, ‘Here he lies’. But I hear the angel saying, ‘Come see the place where the Lord lay’. He was dead – but is alive again – and because He lives, we shall live also.”

William Jay
Morning Exercises, April 5th

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