Abbildungen der Seite

mense, omniscient, omnipotent, infinite in holiness, &c. bis human nature, finite limited, and before its glorification, subject to all infirmities of life and death, that the same nature in others absolutely considered, is obnoxious unto. : 3. In each of these natures, he acts suitably unto the essential properties and principles of that nature. As God, he made all things, upholds all things by the word of his power, fills heaven and earth, &c. As man, he lived, hungered, suffered, died, rose, ascended into heaven. Yet, by reason of the union of both these natures in the same person, not only his own person is said to do all these things, but the person expressed by the name which he hath on the account of one nature, is said to do that which he did only in the other. So God is said to 'redeem his church with his own blood,' and to lay down his life for us;' and the Son of man to be in heaven, when he was on the earth ; all because of the unity of his person, as was declared. And these things do all of them directly and undeniably flow from what is revealed concerning his person, as before is declared.

Of the satisfaction of Christ. The last thing to be inquired into, upon occasion of the late opposition to the great fundamental truths of the gospel, is the satisfaction of Christ. And the doctrine hereof is such, as I conceive needs rather to be explained than vindicated. For it being the centre wherein most, if not all the lines of gospel promises and precepts do meet, and the great medium of all our communion with God in faith and obedience, the great distinction between the religion of Christians, and that of all others in the world, it will easily, on a due proposal be assented unto by all, who would be esteemed disciples of Jesus Christ. And whether a parcel of insipid cavils, may be thought sufficient to obliterate the revelation of it, men of sober minds will judge and discern. .

For the term of satisfaction, we contend not about it. It doth indeed properly express and connote that great effect of the death of Christ, which in the cause before us, we plead , for: : But yet, because it belongs rather to the explanation

of the truth contended for, than is used expressly in the revelation of it; and because the right understanding of the word itself depends on some notions of law, that as yet we. need not take into consideration; I shall not, in this entrance of our discourse, insist precisely upon it, but leave it as the natural conclusion of what we shall find expressly declared in the Scripture. Neither do I say this, as though I did decline the word, or the right use of it, or what is properly signified by it, but do only cast into its proper place answerable unto our method and design in the whole of this brief discourse.

I know some have taken a new way of expressing and declaring the doctrine concerning the mediation of Christ, with the causes and ends of his death, which they think more rational, than that usually insisted on. But as what I have yet heard of or seen in that kind, hath been not only unscriptural, but also very irrational, and most remote from that accuracy whereunto they pretend, who' make use of it; so if they should publish their conceptions, it is not improbable but that they may meet with a scholastical examination by some hand or other.

Our present work, as hath been often declared, is for the establishment of the faith of them, who may be attempted, if not brought into danger, to be seduced by the sleights of some who lie in wait to deceive, and the clamours of others who openly drive the same design. What therefore the Scripture plainly and clearly reveals in this matter, is the subject of our present inquiry. And either in so doing, as occasion shall be offered, we shall obviate, or in the close of it remove those sophisms, that the sacred truth now proposed to consideration hath been attempted withal.

The sum of what the Scripture reveals about this great truth, commonly called the satisfaction of Christ, may

be reduced unto these ensuing heads.

First, That Adam being made upright, sinned against God; and all mankind, all his posterity in him. Gen. i. 27. 'So God created man in his own image ; in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. Gen. iii. 11. And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked ? Hast thou eaten of the tree whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest 'not eat?' Eccles. 'vii. 29. 'Lo, this only have I

found, that God made man upright, but he hath sought out many inventions. Rom. v. 12. 'Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin ; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.' Ver. 18. Therefore, by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation.' Ver. 19. “By one man's disobedience many were made sinners.'

Secondly, That by this sin of our first parents, all men are brought into an estate of sin and apostacy from God, and of an enmity unto him. Gen. vi. 6. God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart, was only evil continually.' Psal. li. 5. “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.' Rom. iii. 23. For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.' Rom. viii. 7. The carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. Eph. iv. 18. Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart;' chap. i. 1. Col. ii. 13.

Thirdly, That in this state all men continue in sin against God, nor of themselves can do otherwise. Rom. iii. 10-12. • There is none righteous, no not one : there is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no not one.'

Fourthly, That the justice and holiness of God, as he is the supreme governor and judge of all the world, require that sin be punished. Exod. xxxiv. 7. "That will by no means clear the guilty. Josh. xxiv. 19. He is a holy God, he is a jealous God, he will not forgive your transgressions nor your sins.' Psal. v. 4–6. For thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness; neither shall evil dwell with thee. The foolish shall not stand in thy sight; thou hatest all workers of iniquity: thou shall destroy them that speak leasing.' Hab. i. 13. Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look upon iniquity.” Isa. xxxiii. 14. ^ Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? who among us shall*dwell with everlasting burning's ?' Rom. i. 32. Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death. Rom, iii. 5, 6. 'Is God anrigh

teous who taketh vengeance? (I speak as a man,) God forbid : for then how shall God judge the world ?' 2 Thess i. 6. It is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you.' Heb. xii. 29. “For our God is a consuming fire;' from Deut. iv. 24.

Fifthly, That God hath also engaged his veracity and faithfulness in the sanction of the law, not to leave sin unpunished. Gen. ii. 17. In the day thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.' Deut. xxvii. 26. Cursed be he that confirmeth not all the words of this law to do them. In this state and condition mankind, had they been left without divine aid and help, must have perished eternally.

Sixthly, That God out of his infinite goodness, grace, and love to mankind, sent his only Son to save and deliver them out of this condition. Matt i. 21. Thou shalt call his name Jesus, for he shall save his people from their sins ; John iii. 16, 17. God so loved the world, that he gave his only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved.' Rom. v. 8. God commendeth his love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.' 1 John iv. 9. In this was manifested the love of God towards us, because God sent his only-begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.' ver. 10. • Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be a propitiation for our sins.' 1 Thess. i. 10. Even Jesus, which delivereth us from the wrath to come.'

Seventhly, That this love was the same in Father and Son, acted distinctly in the manner that shall be afterward declared ; so vain are the pretences of men, who from the love of the Father in this matter, would argue against the love of the Son; or on the contrary.

Eighthly, That the way in general whereby the Son of God being incarnate, was to save lost sinners, was by a substitution of himself according to the design and appointment of God in the room of those whom he was to save, 2 Cor. v. 21. He hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might become the righteousness of God in him.' Gal. iii. 13. - Christ hath redeemed us from the curse

of the law, being made a curse for us.' Rom. v. 7,8. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet peradventure for a good man some will even dare to die. But God commendeth his love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.? Rom. viii. 3. : For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh; that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us.' 1 Pet. ii. 24. Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree. Chap. iii. 18. For Christ also hath once suffered for us, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us unto God.' All these expressions undeniably evince a substitution of Christ as to suffering in the stead of them whom he was to save; which in general is all that we intend by his satisfaction ; namely, that he was made ‘sin for us,' a' curse for us,' died for us, that is in our stead, that we might be saved from the wrath to come. And all these expressions, as to their true genuine importance, shall be vindicated as occasion shall require.

Ninthly, This way of his saving sinners is in particular, several ways expressed in the Scripture. As,

1. That he offered himself a sacrifice to God, to make atonement for our sins, and that in his death and sufferings. Isa. liii. 10. · When thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin.' John i. 29. Behold the Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world.' Eph. v. 2. ' Christ hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savour. Heb. ii. 17. Was a merciful high-priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. Heb. ix. 11-14. But Christ being come an high-priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood, he entered in once into the holy place; having obtained eternal redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls, &c. How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your consciences from dead works?'

2. That he redeemed as by paying a price, a ransom for our redemption, Mark X. 45. · The Son of man came to

« ZurückWeiter »