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vi. 13. And according to the inspired language world (or age) but also in that which is to
of Isaiah, there seems to have been the nature of a covenant between the Father and the Son, which appears in his being given for a cove nant to the people, chap. xlii. 6; xlix. 8, and the words in chap. liii. 10, 11, are fairly capable of being rendered in such a manner as to make a mutual agreement evident. If he shall make his soul a sin offering, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of Jehovah shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied, &c.
And the words of Christ himself in St. John vi. 37, 40, seem very plainly to imply that he came down from heaven upon an errand of great importance, and which he had engaged to execute, nor can he leave any part of his work unfinished.
God the Father having given him all things without exception, according to those texts more than once already quoted in this work (St. John iii. 35; xiii. 3; xvii. 2, compared with St. Matthew xi. 27, and St. Luke x. 22) expects that the Son of his love will put a final and total end to all rebellion, and bring all the rightful subjects of the Almighty Sovereign back again to their allegiance. And Jesus evidently considers himself under obligations to perform this great work before he delivers up the kingdom to the Father. And I cannot but think that he is fully qualified for the performance of all that he hath engaged to do, and that he will certainly accomplish it
For he must reign till he hath put all enemies under his feet.
It is of absolute necessity that his reign shall endure until there is no more opposition, no more rebellion, or disobedience, to be found | in the wide creation. "Jehovah saith unto my Adonai, or Lord, Sit thou at my right hand until I make thine enemies thy footstool." Psal. cx. 1. This the modern Jews apply to David, but it is certain that in our Saviour's time they understood it to relate to Christ, or the Messiah, the Son of David, although they were puzzled at our Lord's question, and were not able to resolve him how the Messiah could be born the Son, and Lord of David at the same time. See St. Matth. xxii. 42-45; St. Mark xii. 35-37; St. Luke XX. 41-44.
And St. Peter applies those words of David directly to Jesus, saying: "For David is not ascended into the heavens; but he saith himself: The Lord said unto my Lord, sit thou on my right hand, until I make thy foes thy footstool. Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ." Acts ii. 34-36.
When our blessed Saviour was exalted at the Father's right hand according to the Scriptures, then this promise began to be fulfilled. He was then set "Far above all principality and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named not only in this
come." And the Father "put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church." Ephes. i. 21, 22. Our Lord "is gone to heaven, and is on the right hand of God, angels and authorities, and powers being made subject unto him." 1 Peter iii. 22.
Thus all things were put under him in the divine purpose, without exception, but all things are not yet put under him in the sense of these words in 1 Cor. xv. 25, because it is said that he must reign till he hath put all enemies under his feet: which plainly shews that it is not yet the case. And the words of the apostle in this epistle to the Hebrews, Heb. ii. 8, expresses the same idea,“Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him; but now we see not yet all things put under him.” Here it is evident, that in the purpose of God all things are put under Christ, and subjected to him in so universal a manner, as there is not the least exception; yet it is equally evident that all things are not yet actually put under him: the divine counsels, respecting this important matter, are not fulfilled before the eyes of creatures: but they must be. All the enemies of our Lord must come to be subject to him in a sense far different from what ever hath yet taken place; and Christ must reign until this grand purpose shall be fully accomplished. God says, "I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow and every tongue shall swear." Isai. xlv. 23. And the apostle St. Paul, after speaking of our dear Saviour's amazing humiliation even to the death of the cross, says, "Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name; that in the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." Phil. ii. 9–11. When this comes to be actually fulfilled, then it may be truly said, that all our Lord's enemies are in the strictest sense put under his feet, but not before; and this is spoken of by the Apostle as something future, and far remote.
The last enemy that shall be destroyed is Death; or more properly, Death, the last enemy shall be destroyed.
There are some who would wish to confine this destruction to the death of the body, or that which is called the natural death; but to me it appears, that every thing that bears the name of death in the sacred Scriptures, must be included, and is really intended here. Death and misery of every kind shall be abolished, done away, swallowed up in victory, &c., and nothing but life and happiness shall remain. I cannot help considering this as the genuine sense and meaning of the following glorious promises. He will swallow up
death in victory; and Adonia Jehovah will wipe away tears from off all faces," &c. Isaiah xxv. 8.
I will ransom them (even such who perish in their iniquity and sin, as is evident from the context) from the power of the grave: (or hell) I will redeem them from death: O death I will be thy plagues: O grave (or hell) I will be thy destruction: repentence shall be hid from mine eyes." Hosea xiii. 14.
"And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away." Rev. xxi. 4.
Then shall the song of triumph be sung, "Death is swallowed up in victory!" And the great and mighty challenge shall be proclaimed through all the empire of Jehovah, "O death, where is thy sting? O grave (or hell) where is thy victory ?" 1 Cor. xv. 54, 55. But surely while sin, which is the sting of death, is found in existence, and while pain, sorrow, crying, &c., continue in the universe, it can hardly be said, that death is swallowed up in victory; and while the second death lasts, which is certainly the most terrible kind of death, how can it be said, O death where is thy sting and, O grave (or hell) where is thy victory? But to me, scarce any thing appears more plain, than the certain annihilation or total destruction of all that ever bore the name of death. Then it may be truly said, "Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound; that as sin hath reigned unto death, even so hath grace reigned through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord." Rom. v. 20 21.
and they cried before him, Bow the knee; and he made him ruler over all the land of Egypt. And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, I am Pharaoh, and without thee shall no man lift up his hand or foot in all the land of Egypt." Gen. xli. 39-44.
The whole of this transaction was a wonderful type, and a most beautful illustration of the subject now upon.
Pharaoh set up Joseph over the land of Egypt because there was none so discreet and wise as he was, that understood the matter so well, was so competent to every part of the business, and that would be so faithful and diligent in the discharge of the same. Pharaoh in choosing Joseph, and placing him over all the land, shewed his own wisdom and discernment to be great. Even so the wisdom and goodness of God shone conspicuously in placing his dear Son in so glorious and important a situation. For where is there one in heaven or earth worthy to be named in comparison with Jesus? so prudent, so wise, so faithful, so just, so competent to every part of his work? The Father hath therefore entrusted him with all the concerns of the wide extended universe, as Pharaoh did Joseph with the land of Egypt, and all things therein.
Pharaoh gave Joseph full power, and unlimited and absolute authority over all his people, but excepted himself, in the same manner as the apostle declares the Father to be excepted. It is manifest that he is excepted who did put all things under him.
But this exception being expressly made (though it was evidently implied in the nature of the thing) plainly shews that none else can possibly be excepted, whether things in heaBut prior to the total destruction of death, ven, things on earth, or things under the all other enemies, that is, all rebellious crea-earth. Christ is truly and really over all, tures, shall be humbled, and shall willingly (the Father only excepted) God blessed forever. submit to Jesus, and be his enemies no long- Rom. ix. 5. er: for certainly at the time when the last enemy shall be destroyed, no enemies can remain in the universe.
For he hath put all things under his feet: but when he saith, All things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted who did put all things under him.
This reasoning of the apostle seems almost self evident: for nothing can be more manifest, than that he (the eternal Father) who put all things under Christ the Son, is him self excepted. Even as Pharaoh said to Joseph, when he made him governor or ruler over all the land of Egypt.
"Forasmuch as God hath shewed thee all this, there is none so discreet and wise as thou art! Thou shalt be over my house, and according to thy word shall all my people be ruled; only in the throne will I be greater than thou. And Pharaoh saith unto Joseph, See I have set thee over all the land of Egypt. And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph's hand, and arrayed him in vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck; and he made him to ride in the second chariot which he had:
And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.
The time, the glorious time will come, when all things shall be willingly subject to the Son of God, and shall submit to his control. When this event takes place, and there is not an enemy remaining in all the universe, then shall the Son of God deliver up the kingdom to the Father, in the most grand, glorious, and honourable manner, and be himself also sub|ject to him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.
I have ventured far already, but cannot feel myself willing to quit the subject, without once more endeavouring to represent its beauties in the form of a speech, which I trust will not be altogether unworthy of the Son of God to utter in the presence of his Father, and all the heavenly host on that resplendent day.
Speech of the King of kings and Lord of lords, upon his resigning his Imperial dignity to God the Father, having forever put down all rule, and authority, and power.
My Father and my God,behold me,and the numerous children which thou hast given me, as the reward of my labour, and the fruit of my pain. I have at length subdued all my enemies, and brought them freely and heartily to submit to my sceptre. Long and severe was the struggle, and many that loved me doubted whether I should ever so far prevail as to bring my greatest enemies to be my friends; but I have succeeded according to thy will, and thy glorious purposes. Thou didst create all to glorify thy name, to enjoy thy love, and to be happy in beholding the light of thy countenance, and when some of thy creatures fell from their first estate, thou didst appoint me to reclaim and restore them. "Father, the long expected time is at last arrived, when thy Son having accomplished thy designs, approaches thy throne to resign his kingdom to thee. Thou didst give him power over all, and he hath given eternal life to all which thou gavest him. All that thou, O Father, gavest me, have at length willingly returned unto me,and behold I present them before thee this day, reconciled to thee, to me,and to each other. See, my Father, and behold throughout this mighty throng, there is not one knee but what bows in the most cordial manner, not a tongue but is ready to shout thy praise, nor an heart that doth not overflow with love to thee. All are thy willing and obedient subjects, reclaimed from all their evil ways, and forever confirmed in the purest habits of goodness. Look, my Father, through the wide extended universe, for thou beholdest all thy works in every situation with the utmost ease, see, there is not one rebellious creature to be found! Where sin once reigned and abounded, grace now reigns and abounds much more. All confusion and disorder now destroyed, the whole creation exhibits one great scene of peace, harmony, and divine order. All creatures are now wholly delivered from the bondage of corruption, into the glorious liberty of the children of God. All things in the universe are gathered together in one, are reconciled to thy government, and conformed to thine image and shall never more go astray. Sin, sorrow, crying, pain, and death shall never more be known in thy extensive empire. Thou shalt be all, and in all. Thy subjects no longer need a Mediator, they are all righteous and holy, and capable of beholding thy face with joy. I have seen the travail of my soul, and am forever satisfied. Thou hast fulfilled all thy promises to me in the completest manner, I have also performed my words to all my people, whom I have redeemed to thee, and from this
day resign them to thee. Now they are all one, as thou Father and I are one; one spirit rules in them all; they have all the same designs, even to glorify thy name, and promote the happiness of each other.
“Thou art now all in all, and let all thy works praise thee.
"Thy glory shall endure for ever; thou shalt rejoice in all thy works. This is the scene which completes that joy which was set before me, for which I endured the cross, despising the shame.
"To this bright and glorious day I directed my view; I beheld all things put under me, I saw, beyond the darkness and obscurity of sin, pain, and death, the glorious day of light arise on all thy creatures.
"It is come, it is come, this is the day I looked for. The night is forever past, and eternal day is risen upon all creation, to set no more. Shout, O Heavens, it is done, it is done. Let all creatures adore thee, for this is the display of thy glorious, wise and gracious designs.
"Thou didst entrust me with the execution of thy wonderous plan, and this I have completed. Henceforth I resign the kingdom to thee; be thou thyself the Lord over all.
"In my whole process I have always been an example to all my flock, of which I am still, and shall remain, the Shepherd and head; I will therefore shew an example to all thy creatures that shall never be forgotten, which shall forever confirm thy authority over them; behold, I lay my sceptre and my crown at thy feet, and profess before all the hosts of heaven, and the numerous armies that acknowledge my sway, that great and mighty as I am, I am subject unto thee. I bow myself before thine awful throne: I submit to thee as all thy creatures have voluntarily submitted to me. Behold me as the
head of all principality and power, and with me behold all thy creatures submit and bow to thy sovereign sway."
Here the scene of divine revelation closes, GOD IS ALL IN ALL. I can go no further. The astonishing subject drinks up all my spirits! I am lost and swallowed up in the vast unbounded ocean of love!
"God our Saviour will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth." 2 TIM. ii. 4.
TRANSLATED FROM THE FRENCH OF
FERDINAND OLIVIER PETITPIERRE,
FORMERLY MINISTER OF CHAUX-DE-FOND.
GIHON, FAIRCHILD & CO.