Imágenes de páginas

their way) upon Christ, and the fatisfaction of his blood, when the efficacy and terror of conscience is upon them, and they feel 'the Ring of guilt within them; but as soon as the form is over, and the rod that conscience Maked over them laid by, there's no more talk of Christ then : alas! it was not Christ, but quietness, that they fought; beware of mistaking peace for Christ.

Direct. 3. Thirdly, In receiving Christ come empty handed unto him : “ believing on him who justifies the vogodly,” Rom. iv. 5. and know that the deepest sense of your owo vileness, emptiness, and unworthiocfs, is the best frame of heart that can accompany you to Chrift. Many persons stand off from Christ for want of fit qualifications; they are not prepared for Christ as they thould be, i.'e. they would not come naked and empty, but have fomething to commend them to the Lord Jesus for acceptance.' O! this is the pride of mens hearts, and the soare of the Devil. Let him that hath no money come: You are not to come to Christ because you are qualified, but that you may be qualified with whatever you want; and the best qualification you can bring with you, is a deep fenfe that you have no worth nor excellency at all in you.

Direct. 4. Fourthly, In receiving Christ, beware of danger. cus delays. O follow on that work till it he finished. You read of some that are almost persuaded, and others not far from the kingdom of God; O take heed of what the prophet fays, Hofea xii. 13. Delays here are full of danger, life is uncertain, fo are means of

grace too. The man-layer needed no motives to quicken his Right to the city of refuge.

Direct. 5. Fifthly, See that you receive all Christ, with all your heart. To receive all Christ, is to receive his perfon cloathed with all his offices; and to receive him with all your heart, is to receive him into your understanding, will, and affections, Acts viii. 37. As there is nothing in Christ that may be refused, so there is nothing in you from which he must be excluded.

Direct. 6. Lastly, Understand that the opening of your hearts to receive the Lord Jesus Christ, is not a work done by any power of your own, but the arm of the Lord is revealed there. in, Ifa. liii. 1. It is therefore your duty and interest to be daily at the feet of God, pouring out your souls to him in secret, for abilities to believe. And so much, as to our actual reception of Chrilt.

Thanks be to God for Jesus Christ.

[blocks in formation]

Setting forth the Believer's Fellowship with CHRIST,

the next End of his Application to them. Psalm xlv. 7. --Therefore God thy God, hath anointed thee

with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.

« is the


HE method of grace in uniting souls with Jesus Christ,

hath been opened in the former discourses; thus doth the Spirit (whose office it is) make application of Christ to God's elect, the result and next fruit whereof is communion with Christ in his graces and benefits. Our mystical union is the very groundwork, and foundation of our sweet, foul-enriching communion, and participation of spiritual privileges; we are first ingrafted into Christ, and then fuck the sap and fatness of the root : first married to the person of Christ, then endowed and instated in the privileges and benefits of Christ. This is my proper work to open at this time, and from this scripture.

"The words read, are a part of that excellent fong of love " that heavenly Epithalamium, wherein the spiritual espousals “ of Christ and the church are figuratively, and very elegantly, " celebrated and shadowed. The subject matter of this pfàlm


fame with the whole book of the Canticles ;" and in this psalm, under the figure of king Solomon, and the daughter of Egypt, whom he espoused, the spiritual espousals of Christ and the church are set forth and represented to us. Among many rapturous and elegant expressions in praise of this glorious bridegroom, Christ, this is one, which you have before you : "God thy fellow hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness a“bove thy fellows:" (i. e.) enriched and filled thee, in a lingua lar and peculiar manner, with the fulness of the Spirit, whereby thou art consecrated to thy office: and by reasou whereof thou out finest and excellest all the saints, who are thy fellows or copartners in these graces. So that in these words you have two parts; viz. First, The saints dignity, and Secondly, Christ's pre-eminency. First, The faints dignity, which consists in this, that they li 2

$ * Hic Pfalmus propbeticus ell, continetque Epilathamium que Chrifti cum ecclefia nuptiæ celebrantur, idemque habet argumentum quod canticum canticorum ej reqúe videtur ele epitome. Coccius in loc.

are Christ's fellows. The Hebrew wordt is very full and copious, and is translated" “ conforts, companions, copartners, “ partakers: or, as ours read it, fe Nows ;" (i. e) fucha as are partakers with bith in the anointing of the Spirit, who do, in their meafure, receive the fame Spirit

, every Charistian being anointed, modo fibi proportionato, with the fame grace, aad dig. nified with the same titles, 1 Joho ii. 27. Rev. i. 6. Christ and the faints are in common one with another : doth the spirit of holiness dwell in him? So it doth in them too. Is Chrift king and prieft? Why, lo are they too by the grace of union with him. He hath made us kings and priests to God, and his Father. This is the saints dignity to be Christ's fellows, conforts, ar copartners; so that look, whatever fpiritual grace or excelJency is in Chrilt, it is not appropriated to himself, but they do. Share with him : for indeed he was filled with the fuloess of the Spirit, for their fakes and use : as the sun is filled with light, not to thine to itself, but to others; fo is Christ with grace. And therefore, somę traosate the text, not prae confortibus, a. bove thy fellows; but propter confortes, for thy fellows I. Making Christ the first receptacle of grace, who firft and immediately is filled from the fountain, the Godhead: but it is for his people, who receive and derive from him, according to their proportion.

This is a great truth, and the dignity of the saints lies chiefly. in their partnership with Christ, though our translation, above thy fellows, suits best, both with the importance of the word, and scope of the place.

Secondly, But then, whatever dignity is afcribed herein to the faints, there is, and still must be, a pré-eminency acknowledged, and ascribed to Chrift ; if they are anointed with the spirit of grace, much more abundantly in Chrift: "God thy God hath o anointed thee with the oil of gladpess above thy fellows."

By the oil of gladness, understand the spirit of holiness, com. pared here with oil, of which there was a double use under the law, viz. a civil, and a sacred use. It had a facred and a følemo-use, in the inauguration and consecration of the Jewish kings and high-priests; it had also a civil, and common use, for, the anointing their bodies ||, to make their limbs more agile,

+ pagano Confortes, participes, fodales, focios. Vox Hebraa quedeunque focietatis five communionis genus fignificat. Muis. Rivet. pure and clear ; which supplies and feeds the flame,


Oil itfelf is

[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

expedite, and nimble; to make the face shine, for it gave a Jastre, frelhaess, and liveliqels to the countenance. It was al - fo used in lamps, to feed and maintain the fire, and give them light. These were the principal uses of oil. Now, upon all these accounts, it excellently expresseth, and, figuratively, represents to us the spirit of grace poured forth upon Christ and his people. - For,

First, By the spirit poured out upon him, he was prepared for, and confecrated to his offices; he was anointed with the Holy Ghost, and with power, Acts x. 38.

Secondly, As this precious oil runs down from Christ, the head, to the borders of his garments, I mean, as it is shed up. on believers, fo it exceedingly beautifies their faces, and makes them shine with glory,

Thirdly, lt renders them apt, expedite, and ready to every good work; Non tardat uneta rota.

Fourthly, It kindles and maintains the fame of divine love in their fouls, and, like a lamp, enlighteas their minds in the koowledge of spiritual things; the apointing teaches them.

" And this oil is here called the oil of gladness t, because

it is the cause of all joy and gladness to them that are anoiat“ ed with it :". Oil was used (as you heard before) at the inStalment of fovereign princes, which was the day of the gladness of their hearts; and, among the common people, it was

liberally ufed at all their festivals, but never upon their days of : mourning. . Whence it becomes excellently expressive of the nature and use of the spirit of grace, who is the cause and author of all joy io believers, Jobo xvii. 13.

And with this oil of gladaefs is Chrif said to be anointed a. bove his fellows, ie, to have a far greater share of the fpirit of grace than they: “ For to every one of the saints is given grace

according to the measure of the gift of Christ,” Eph. iv. 7. But to him the Spirit is not given by measure, Joho iii. 34.

fuel ; hence the metaphor of anointing with oil ufed in scripture, frequently signifies the internal illumination of the mind by the Ho. ly Spirit, and the communication of the true knowledge of God, and suitable affections of soul to it. Moller. on the place,

+ 'Erator ayah Xiaows dicitur id quod caufam dat fummi gaudii. Grat. in Heb. i. 9. 'Autos ughev artlos ang dapaces 78 FIVEUPATOS, *! ετισπασαμενος καθ. εσιν ανθρωπος το πνεύμα και ημιν μεταδες. ε. ε: He is the cause of the gift of the Spirit to you, and being anointed with the Spirit as he is man, he communicates the Spirit to us also. gEcum.

“ It hath pleased the Father, that in him should all fulness

dwell,” Col. i. 19. And“ of his fulness we all receive grace for grace," Joho i. 16. The faints partake with him, and through him, in the fame spirit of grace, for which reason they are his fellows; but all the grace poured out upon believers, comes exceeding short of that which God hath poured out upon Jesus Christ. The words being thus opened, give us this note.

Doct. That all true believers have a real communion, or fel

lowfbip, with the Lord Jesus Chrift.

From the saints union with Christ, there doth naturally, and immediately, result a most sweet and blessed communion or fellowihip with him in graces and spiritual privileges, Eph. i. 3. “ Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who “ hath blessed us with all spiritual bleslings in heavenly places “ (or things) in Chrift: in giving us his Son, he freely gives us " all things,” Rom. viii. 32. So in 1 Cor. i.


"Of him are ye “ in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, righte" oufness, fanctification and redeniption.” And once more, i Cor. iii. 22, 23. “ All are yours, and ye are Christ's." What Christ is, and hath, is theirs by communication to them, or improvement for them; and this is very evidently implied in all those excellent fcripture metaphors, by which our voion with Christ is figured and shadowed out to us : as the marriageunion betwixt a man and his wife, Eph. v. 31, 32. You know that this conjugal union gives the wife interest in the cltate and honour of the husband, be she never so meanly descended in hera self I: The natural union betwixt the head and members of the body, by which also the mystical union of Christ and believers is set forth, 1 Cor. xii. 12. excellently illustrates this fellowship or communion betwixt them : for from Chrilt “ the whole bo“ dy fitly joined together, and compacted by that which every

joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the “ measure of every part, maketh increase of the body," as the apostle speaks, Eph. iv. 16. The union betwixt the graff and the stock, which is another emblem of our union with Christ, John xv. 1. iinports, in like manner, this communion, or partpership betwixt Christ and the saints; for no sooner doth the graff take hold of the stock, but the vital fap of the stock is communicated to the graff, and both live by one and the same juice.

Ubi ego Cajus tu Gaja. Uxor clarefcit in radiis maritii

« AnteriorContinuar »