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2. As the parties passing between the sacrifices thus divided, imprecated such a division on themselves, should they deal falsely in this covenant. Hence God threatens the Jews, saying, “ The men who have not performed the covenant .which they made before me, when they cut the calf in twain, and passed be-tween the parts thereof.--I will even give their dead bodies to be meat for the fowls of hea
ven *." The birds of prey should perch on the ; dead bodies of the Jews, as they would have
done on the bodies of the facrifices, had not Abram driven them away; and, like these facrifices, they should be cut assünder. It must be observed, however, that God could neither fail nor suffer for it: But, in condescension to the weakness of his friend, he pledges his life and happiness, for the accomplishment of his faithful promise, to bring him to the full affiurance of faith. :
3. CHIEFLY as these sacrifices prefigured the true sacrifice of the Son of God, for the full and final confirmation of the covenant of grace. But this use of sacrifice has been explained above, and what has been observed ak ready needs not be here repeated t.
. * Jer. xxxiv. 18. 20. .
See the Introduction...
LJERE it will be proper to consider,-1. The 11 Mofaic account of the Parties in this Transaction.-II. The Parts of it.-III. Its Confirmation.---And, IV. The Occasions of it,
FIRST, I am to consider the MOSAIC DESCRIPTION of the PARTIES Covenanting : Which are Abram and his Seed.
1. The great author and chief party in this transaction announceth himself to be the Great God,-GOD ALL-SUFFICIENT; or, as others render it, THE ALMIGHTY GOD *. From the scope of the place, it appears, that the former translation is more apposite than the latter, though it is readily granted, that there is a manifest coincidence between them; for
# So our translators render it. But it has always been considered as one of the divine names ; and many have left it untransated : The original word is, SCHADDAI, 170. The Hebrew linguists are as much divided about its derivation as its signification. Buxtorf enuinerates, no fewer than five or fix different derivations, Diflert. Dc noininibus Dei Hebraicis, § 48. That which ap- · proves itself molt to me is from w pro 7UX WHO, and
SUFFICIENT : That is, HE WHO IS SUFFICIENT; or, as it is usually rendered, ALI, SUFFICIENT.
all-fuficiency comprehends the idea of omnipotence, as well as that of many other perfections. God, even the Son, is ALL-S U E FICIENT unto his own blessedness, as well as unto the happiness of his creatures. Of consequence, he is abundantly able to accomplish his promises, and enable his people to obey his precepts. How comfortable is it to covenant with such a party! One who needs nothing at our hand. Hence, this covenant is all evangelical, all in favour of Abram and his children. ·
2. The other party is Abram and his feed. Said God to Abram, “ I establish my covenant between me and THEE, and THY SEED AFTER THE E, in their generations.” God confidered Abranı as already in covenant with himself. This is evident from the terms in which this covenant is proposed: Said he, “I will ESTABLISH my covenant between me and thee *." It deserves also to be noticed, that God caused the name of the principal covenanter to be changed : “ Neither shall thy name any more be called ABRAM: but thy name ihall be AB RAHAM; for a father of many nations have I made thee t." Accordingly, his name carried in it a continual representation of God's promise, given for the perpetual confolation of the Church. Again, this covenant was made with Abraham; and also with his SEED after him, in their generations. More particularly, This covenant was made with Abram, as a type of his extraordinary Seed : « Now, to Abraham, and to his Seed, were the promises made: He faith not and to feeds, as of many, but as of one ; and to thy feed, which is Christ.” Once more, This covenant was made with Abraham as the principal member of the visible Church; and his Seed, represented by him, as the infants of the members of the visible Church are represented by
* See the foregoing Differtation, Part 1. + The patriarch's first name was 926: His last name 0772x. The former imports an high fapher ; the lat
ter, as explained by God himself, means a father of many nations. Sundry Jews, and some, Christians, reckon, that 77 is taken from the name JEHOVAH ; but this composition is not so agreeable to the infallible exposition just now mentioned. The proper derivation of that naine which was imposed on him, appears to be . from IX FATHER, and 720 A MULTITUDE. And n is retained from 7: And the signification may be expresled thus, The FATHER OF A MULTITUDE. Taken in this point of view, it contains a solemn representation of the implantation of Gentile believers into the covenant of Abrahain : For, as Calvin obferves, with great propriety, he became the FATHER OF MANY NATIons, not by his issue spreading through many nations (though he had many fons) ; nor did they ever incorporate with any other people : But by the adoption of strangers to be fel, low-citizens with him and his feed, and their joint ad. milfion into the housold of God.
The PAT". And the
their parents in baptisin*. By the law of nature, and the wise appointment of God's word, parents may receive grants for the behoof of their children; and also bind for their children's performance of certain duties. Such things obtain every day in all societies under heaven: And why should it not obtain likeways in the Church, the most perfect of all societies? Thus, all who šprang from Abraham were externally holy, till they cut off themselves by
* Vide Calvin. Institut. Lib. IV. cap. xvi. Thef, 4-14. Ball's Treatise on the Covenant of Grace, p. 50-52. F. Turretin. Loc. xxix. Q. 20. Thes. 5.-Fron this texty these divines have established the right of infants, bom within the visible Church, unto the benefits of the Covenant of Grace ; and particularly unto the initiating seal of it, with a degree of evidence not to be resisted. The last mentioned author useth the following topics : “ At “ ad infantes pertinere fædus patet ex clausula fæderis, « Gen. xvii. 7. Act. ii. 38. Fateor quidein Fædus Dei “ primario, et præcipue adultos refpicere, quia omni “ tale pactum reciproca conventione conftat, qux utro« bique voluntaria effe debet, et fapientiam Dei decet “ Fædus pafcifci cum hominibus perfectis, qui poffunt " exercere operationes facultatum moralium. Sed loc " non obstat, quominus pertineat quoque ad infantes:“ 1. Ex Dei ordine, quia ita voluit gratiain fuam pro“ tendere a parentibus ad liberos.-2. Ex rei natura, " quia liberi funt pars parentum, et ejufdem cúm iis * conditionis.-3. Inter homines pcta ad liberos con* trahentium complectuntur, Ergo et in fædere Dei. « 4. Quia ad infantes pertinet res fignificata, puta re" millio peccatorum, regeneratio, regnun cælorum.
Ergò etiam fignun, nanı fi quid majus eft illis cominy. " nicatur, qua ratione poffet illis denegari quod minus “ eft fic argumentatur Petrus Act. X. 47.