Imágenes de páginas

that all along the firft chapter of Genefis, while God was yet upon his creating work, he is called ELOCHIM, a God of power; but in the fecond chapter of Genefis, ver. 4. God having compleated his work, he is then called JEHOVAH-ELOCHIM, a God of power and perfection. And as here he takes that name, when he perfects what he had begun; fo we find him making himself known by this name, when he appears to perform what he had promised to Ifrael, Exod. vi. 3. I appeared to Abraham, Ifaac, and Jacob, by the name of GOD ALMIGHTY; but by my name JEHOVAH was I not made known to them. God would now be known by his name JEHOVAH, as being, I. A God performing what he had promised, and fo giv ing a being to his promifes. 2. A God perfecting what he had begun, and finishing his own work. And now, the fubduing of the Canaanites before Ifrael, was a work that God had promised, and a work that now he had begun; therefore he makes himself known in this work by his name Jehovah, a performing and perfecting God. This is the powerful conqueror, that all the true Ifrael of God have to look to, and depend upon for deftroying the nations of fpiritual enemies for them. This name belongs to our Lord Jefus Chrift, equally with the Father, and the eternal Spirit. It is he that led Ifrael out of Egypt by the hand of Mofes, wrought wonders for them, and brought them to Canaan, and delivered their enemies into their hand; by all which was typified the greater falvation and deliverance that he was to work, in accomplishing the bufinefs of our redemption in our nature. And, by taking to himself the name JESUS, he hath not loft the name JEHOVAH; nay, he could not


be a Jefus, if he were not Jehovah; he could not deftroy these nations I have named, the fum of which is fin: For to destroy fin, is more than to make a world: Sin cannot be deftroyed, without fatisfying that infinite juftice that fin offended, and glorifying that infinite holiness that fin affronted, and fulfilling that law that fin had violated, and appeafing that wrath and vengeance that fin had kindled. Further, fin could not be destroyed, without destroying the devil that begat it, and the wicked heart that brought it forth; all which requires a new creation, more great and glorious than the first, and belongs to none but JEHOVAH. This name points out the divine glory of our redeemer, and conqueror, which I offer in these two further remarks upon it. 1. This great name JEHOVAH (as thefe that investigate the Hebrew root, obferve) fignifies, being, effence, fimple-existence, or felf-fubfiftence ; and imports his most fimple, absolute, eternal and independent being and exiftence; having his being in, of, and from himself; and from whofe infinite being all creatures have their finite being. 2. This great name JEHOVAH comprehends in itself the three Hebrew tenfes: The preterit, fignifying the time paft; the prefent, fignifying what is now; and the future, fignifying the time to come; and imports that defignation given to Chrift, Rev. i. 4, 8. which is, and which was, and which is to come. Thus he is the I AM THAT I AM, as he is called, Exod. iii. 14. The Alpha and Omega, the first and the laft; the firft without beginning, and the last without end. O but they that have fuch a glorious general to follow, need not fear to take the field against the nations! He is JEHOVAH.

(2.) Ifrael's

(2.) Ifrael's captain general is here defcribed by his relation to them; Thy GOD, The Lord thy God. This relation is ftated upon the ground of a new covenant difpenfation, even a covenant of promise in Chrift Jefus. Of this covenant there was an oldteftament difpenfation, under which this people of Ifrael were; and a new-testament difpenfation, under which we are: The former was a darker, and this is a clearer and brighter dispensation of the fame new covenant. The old covenant of works being broken and violated by the fin of man, God could not in honour come under this relation again to finners but upon the ground of a new covenant establifhed in Chrift: This covenant of promife was first difcovered to Adam in Paradife, afterwards to Abraham and others. The promise of that new covenant was fealed by the blood of Chrift typically, under the old teftament, by the facrifices then offered; and actually at Jerufalem, when he gave his life a ransom for many. Upon the footing of this covenant, I fay, it is, that he afferts this relation, The Lord thy God. But more particularly, for explaining this relative defignation, Thy God, we may

take a four-fold view thereof.

1. As it is expreffive of the ancient federal relation betwixt God, and Ifrael of old, the church of the Jews under that difpenfation. He became their God, and they were chofen of him to be his peculiar people, beyond all other people in the world; as you fee, Deut. vii. 6. For thou art a holy people to the Lord thy God: The Lord thy God hath choJen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people upon the face of the earth. He made known his mind with refpect to the way of falvation to them, and they to others, Pfal. clvii, 19, 20. He


fbewed his word unto Jacob, and his ftatutes and bis judgments to Ifrael; he hath not dealt fo with any nation. And having taken them vifibly into a covenant relation, he establishes his covenant with them and their feed, Deut. x. 15. The Lord had delight in thy fathers to love them, and be chofe their feed after them. And thus he faid to Abraham, Gen. xvii. 7. I will establish my covenant between me and thee, and thy feed after thee, to be a God to thee, and to thy feed. Hence fays God to them, You only have I known of all the families of the earth. All this is faid of them, even with refpect to their churchftate, abftract from the fingular faving privileges of true believers among them, who through grace were enabled to improve thefe great advantages they enjoyed above other people. By virtue of this relation that he stood in to them, he engaged, as the Lord their God, to put out the nations of the Canaanites before them by little and little.

2. You may view it as expreffive of the prefent federal relation that God ftands in to the vifible church under the new-teftament, even to us Gentiles, as fucceeding to the Jews in their church-privileges, together with fuperadded advantages, in fo far as the new-teftament difpenfation does excel that of the old. As it was faid to the Jewish church, The promife is to you and to your children, Acts ii. 39. and that to them belong the adoption, and the glory, the covenant, and the promife, Rom. ix. 4. So in like manner do they belong to the christian church, we being grafted in among them, to partake of the root and fatnefs of their olive-tree, Rom. xi. 17. Hence flows a common interest that all the members of the vifible church have in God as their God, and Christ as their head; not only as an head of eminency,


but as an head of influence and government. All the common influences fhed among the members of the visible church come from this fource, and from thence refult alfo many excellent privileges, all which are sealed in baptifm, which fucceeds to the feal of circumcifion among the Jews. Baptifm feals to us, and to all the visible church, a common general right to God's covenant, fo as we may warrantably plead the promises, and that promife in particular, I will be your God, and ye shall be my people; which is the fundamental promife. Great are the privileges that belong to the vifible church, that do not belong to thofe that are without God commits to them his miniftry, his oracles and ordinances; by the means of which, he brings forth children, and gathers his elect, fo as out of the church vifible there is no ordinary poffibility of falvation, Acts ii. laft. As all the baptized members of the vifible church, have a fealed intereft in the covenant of promife, fuch as lays them under fpecial obligation to believe in Chrift; fo they have a claim, beyond the rest of the world, to God as their God in Christ, and as their Saviour: Yea, all the church visible are faid to be in Chrift, John xv. 2. even these branches that bear not fruit, and that fhall be taken away, and caft into the fire. Baptifm feals our ingraftment into Christ, that is, an engraftment common to all that are members of the visible church, befides the faving fpiritual ingraftment of true believers. Now that common relation that you all have to God, as church members, tho' it be common to believers and unbelievers, yet it is in itself a special privilege, whereby you are exalted above the rest of the world that are without the church, and gives every one of you a right to plead this promise


« AnteriorContinuar »