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Why will he do fo much kindness to any poor worm of Adam's houfe? Why, because Chrift, as mediator, hath engaged his heart to approach unto God in their stead, to do all that was requifite for making a vent to this kindness and favour of God towards man. I know that fome take the words to be spoken of the people of God, their drawing near by faith, and in point of duty engaging themfelves to approach to him, though his grace. This is a confequent that follows upon the other, and therefore I shall not exclude it from its own place in the application of this subject, if the Lord will. But with the best interpreters, that I have seen, I apprehend it is spoken of Chrift, holding out his undertaking for an elect world in the covenant of redemption or grace, and becoming our furety, engaging himself to the Father for us, in the view of our having ruined ourselves, and broke our credit with God. The first Adam, our natural and federal head in the covenant of works, broke the covenant, and violated the engagement that he made of approaching to God, with his perfect perfonal obedience; and fo he, and we in him, loft all our power with God. But, behold, the fecond Adam having his heart filled and fraughted with love to a company of finful miferable worms, fuch as are here prefent, undertakes the engagement that Adam brake: And he being a perfon of entire credit, the bargain was agreed to, and God iffues out all blesfings on his account: For who is this that engaged bis beart?
In the words you may obferve, (1.) The proper work and office of our Lord Jefus as mediator, viz. to approach unto God, and that for us, and in our room and ftead, as the high-priest of our profef
fion. The priests are faid to draw near to God, Lev. x. 3. and xxi. 17, 18. It is faid Exod. xx.
21. that Mofes drew near unto the thick darkness, where God was. So did Chrift, our great Mofes, draw near and approach unto God, (2.) Obferve, in the words, his cordial compliance with this work; He engaged his heart to it, he received a commandment of the Father, who caused him to approach, he being the original cause and spring, as the connecting particle (for) does fhew; for whe is this that does approach? Could any do it without me? No, the Father was first at work; but Chrift was as willing to the work as his Father was to employ him: He engaged his heart to it, that is, he bound and obliged himself to it, he undertook for his heart, as fome read it; he undertook for his foul that in the fulnefs of time it fhould be made an offering for fin; His own voluntary compliance with his Father's will, and his compaffion to falleri man, engaged him; and he was hearty and refolute, free and chearful in it, and made nothing of the difficulties that ftood in the way. (3.) You have here the fingularity of this fact, and the wonderfulness of it, expreffed in the question, Who is this that engaged his heart to approach unto me? It points out the greatnefs of the perfon, the admirable nature of the work he effays. Chrift is in all this matter truly wonderful; and when it is a God that expreffes it in this manner, we may well ask it with admiration, Who is this that engaged his heart to fuch an undertaking? And then, (4.) You have the divine teftimony annexed to the whole, in thefe words, faith the Lord. Here is a noblė ground for faith, even the teftimony of the God of truth: Let the mouth of unbelief be flopt, for the
mouth of the Lord hath fpoken it. God's teftimony is our fecurity, and we need no better than the word of a God teftifying concerning his eternal fon. Who is this that engaged his heart to approach unto me? faith the Lord.
OBSERVE, That our Lord Jefus Chrift, the eternal Son of God, cordially and willingly engaged bimfelf to approach unto God in the work and business of our redemption.
I shall endeavour to clear this doctrine, and upon it fpeak to the feveral parts of the text, in the following method: After that we have cleared the truth of the doctrine, we fhall, 1. Shew what a wonderful perfon this is that engaged his heart to approach unto God; as feems to be pointed out in this question, Who is this? 2. The nature of
the work that he engages himself in, while it is an engagement to appro.ch unto God. 3. The fingularity of the fact, included in the manner of the expreffion, Who is this that engaged his heart to approach unto God? 4. The reafons of the doctrine; or, why Chrift came under this engagement: Together with the reafons of our faith concerning it; or, why it is, that JEHOVAH's teftimony is added in these words, faith the Lord. 5. Draw fome inferences by way of application of the doctrine, as the Lord fhall please to affift.
Now, before I proceed to the method here laid down, I would offer you fome fcriptural proofs of the doctrine. That Chrift willingly engaged himfelf herein, is evident, (1.) From his accepting of the work and office, Pfal. xl. 7, 8. When facrifice and offering would not, then faid he, Lo, I come, &c. ompared with Heb. x. 5, 6, 7. (2.) From his reckoning it his glory and honour, that he hath
taken this office upon him at his Father's call; as is plain from that expreffion, Heb. v. 4, 5· No man takes this honour to himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron: So Chrift glorified not himself, to be made an high-prieft; but he that faid to him, Thou art my fon, to day have I begotten thee; Thou art a prieft for ever. (3.) From his promifing to depend on his Father for his help and affiftance in the work, Ifa. xlix. 5. Though Ifrael be not gathered, fays Chrift, yet fhall I be glorious in the eyes of the Lord, and my God fhall be my ftrength, Ifa. 1. 7. The Lord God will help me, therefore shall I not be confounded; therefore will I fet my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed. Hence it was, that he endured the crofs, and defpifed the fhame. I will put my trust in him, fays Chrift, Heb. ii. 13. (4.) From his promifing fubjection to his Father's will, in bearing reproaches, and laying down his life for thefe that were given to him, Ifa. 1. 5, 6. I was not rebellious, neither turned away my back. I gave my back to the fmiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from Shame and Spitting. And John x. 17. I lay down my life, and this commandment have I received of my Father. And (5.) According as he promised, fo did he accomplish the promise; his heart was fet upon the work in the hardest part thereof, I have a baptifm to be baptifed with, and how am I flraitned till it be accomplished? And he never was at rest till he could fay, It is finished; I have glorified thee on earth, I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do, John xvii. 4. Thus he fulfilled the engagement he came under. And then (6.) He expects the glory promifed to him, and the accomplishment of the glorious promife that was made to
him upon his fulfilling his engagements, John xvii. 4, 5. I bave glorified thee on the earth: And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own felf, with the glory which I had with thee before the world was. Yea, he challenges it as his due every way, ver. 24. Father, I will that thefe whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may bebold glory which thou haft given me: For thou hast loved me before the foundation of the world. And thus in all these things you fee the truth of the doctrine cleared.
ift Head. The first thing I promised was, to shew what a wonderful perfon this is, that engages his heart to approach unto God; as is pointed out by the queftion, Who is this? There are thefe following things wonderful in this perfon's engaging.
First, Who is this? I anfwer, who but the eter nal Son of the eternal Father, one God with him and the eternal Spirit, even the King eternal and immortal, who is faid to be over all God bleffed for ever, Amen, Rom. ix. 5. Amen says the apostle, and Amen let our hearts fay to it, by putting the crown of abfolute divine fovereignty and fupreme Deity upon the head of our LORD JESUS this day, in oppofition to the damnable error of Arianifm, that is like to take deep root in Britain and Ireland, and fpread like a gangrene, and eat like a cancer. Who is he as to his perfon? He is the Son of God: And who is he as to his nature and effence? He is the fame in fubftance, equal in power and glory with the Father and the Holy Ghoft. He is God over all bleffed for ever; and curfed is the communicant that shall not fay Amen. Under the great feal of the facrament of the Lord's fupper, we make the apostle's confeffion of faith,