Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

head, and will, one day by virtue of their union with him, be raised in their own bodies to life immortal. Thus there is not one evil, one misery, or any thing at which nature shudders and fears, but the men in Christ, true believers in the Son of God, are completely saved from in Christ, and may boldly triumph over. Death itself can do them no harm: their being laid in the grave need give them no uneasiness: they will rise from it every way better for lying in it. This honour belongs to all Christ's saints; they are his members, one with him: they will one day be conformed in body and soul to him; they will see him as he is, they will shine as he does. And as they in their bodies have borne the image of the earthly Adam, they shall bear the image of the heavenly Adam in their bodies also. So that the head and members, Christ and the church, shall be conformed to each other, and be compleat.

It is good to view and review the glorious revelation made of Christ in the sacred page. He sustains the name and title of Saviour; it being his work to save his people from their sins: and it is his office to bestow upon them every blessing and benefit of it. It is expressly said, " He was made sin for us; that he bore our sins in his own body on the tree; that he died for our sins, and rose again for our justification." The apostle John celebrates his praise,

3 T 2

[merged small][ocr errors]

for " loving us, and washing us, from our sins in his own blood." Paul says, " Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us; he is the end of the law for righteousness, to every one that believeth." Our Lord himself says, " I am the resurrection and the life, he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live; and whosoever liveth, and believeth in me, shall never die." Blessings on him. "Forasmuch then as the children were partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself, likewise, took part of the same: that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil." He is Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come. 1 Thess. i. 10. We have a promise to be accomplished to believers at the article of death; "When an abundant entrance is to be' administered into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ," 2 Peter i. 11. "When we are absent from the body, we are assured we shall be present with the Lord." 2 Cor. v. 1, 2, 3. And as it respects the future coming of our Lord from heaven, it is expressly declared, that, " Jf we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him." 1 Thess. iv. 14. And this chapter, out of which I have read my text, presents us with a glorious view and prospect of the eternal triumph of saints, at the resurrection from the grave of death, over mortality for ever: as they will then be raised powerful and glorious, their bodies will be spiritual and incorruptible. "And as we have borne the image of the earthy Adam, we shall also then bear the image of the heavenly." Ever since sin and death entered into our nature, believers have needed all the supports and cordials contained in the first revelation of Jesus Christ; and in the divine light which the Holy Ghost, from time to time, hath been pleased to cast thereon, and reflect thereby on the minds of his regenerate and called ones, they have had their faith and hope increased and maintained.

Thus when death was sent to separate Adam's soul and body, the faithful in that generation saw and read, in a very striking view, their own mortality. Soon afterwards the Lord translated Enoch to himself, without death, to give them a pledge of immortality and life everlasting. There was a glorious proof given concerning the death and resurrection of the Messiah in the typical representation given of it in the sacrifice and deliverance of Isaac, and it might fairly be inferred from hence, that as surely as the head of the elect would be raised up from the power of death, so surely all his members would be in due season, in consequence of their union with him, and interest iu his death and resurrection. It was further declared by the angel of the Lord, as the representative of Jehovah, who spake in the name of all the persons in the incomprehensible Godhead, and said, " I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob," which was a proof of the resurrection from the dead; " seeing that he is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for all live unto him." The prophet Isaiah, speaking of our Redeemer, whose name is the Lord of Hosts, says, "He will swallow up death in victory." He further proclaims, as the representative of the Messiah, an eternal triumph over the grave, saying, " Thy dead men shall live; together with my dead body shall they arise: awake, and sing, ye'that dwell in the dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead." And Christ, by the mouth of the prophet Hosea, says, " I will ransom them from the power of the grave: I will redeem them from death: O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction"

These divine supports for faith and consolations against the fears of death, which are all most divinely realized in the person, work, and victories of our incarnate God, are set before us in this chapter: in which the apostle most fully treats of our Lord's resurrection from the grave of death, and of the resurrection of his mystic body in due season. He introduces his subject concerning the resurrection of the just with au account of the gospel which he had preached; the sum of which was the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ: all which was according to the scriptures. Then he mentions some persons, who were eye witnesses of our Lord's resurrection, as Peter, the twelve apostles, the five hundred brethren, who saw our Lord on a mountain in Galilee, James the son of Alpheus, and brother of our Lord, afterwards all the apostles, immediately before his ascension into heaven, and lastly himself.

He then proceeds to blame some in the Corinthian church, for denying the doctrine of the resurrection; it being one grand part and doctrine of the everlasting gospel, that Christ was risen from the dead, which could not be true, if there be no resurrection. But the testimonies of those eye-witnesses before-mentioned* are a sufficient proof of it; and the denial Of it would be attended with the following absurdities. The preaching of the gospel would be vain, and faith in Christ also; yea, and the apostles would be found false witnesses of God, in the testimony which they gave concerning his raising up Christ from the dead, which was not a truth, if it could be proved that the dead rise not.

On this principle, such as believed in him must be yet in.their sins, in an unregenerate

« AnteriorContinuar »