Imatges de pÓgina
PDF
EPUB

Chap. 7. could not make the comers thereunto perfect, Hebr.

✓ 10. 1. The blood of bulls and goats could not take

away sin, v. 4. Still there was a conscience of fing and a remembrance of it every year, v. 2, 3. Hence God reprobated all those sacrifices, and would have none of them; they were not rejected for the hypocrisie of the offerer, as they were Isa. 1. 12, 13 ; nor comparatively as being in the outward work less than mercy, Hoš.6. 6: But they were rejected as not able to do the great work, to expiate sin; they were to vanish as Clouds before the Sun, as Types before the substance. But when Christ gave himself an offer ing and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling favour, Ephes. 5. 2, there was a penal

, total expiation of sin not the Aesh bụt the Conscience was purged, not cea remonial, but Moral guilt was done away. Thus the Apostle, comparing his Sacrifice with the legal ones, faith, The blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered up himself without fpót to God, shall purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God, Heb. 9. 14. Emphatica omnia, & totidem pene causa, quot verba, æterna auspacea; per Christum parta, faith the worthy Par&us ; all things in the Text are Emphatical, and there are almost as many causes,as words, of the eternal redemption obtained by: Christ. He of fered, not as the Gentiles to Devils, but to God; he offered, not as the Priest under that Law, a Sacrifice distinct from himself, but he offered himself: the thing offered and the Priest, beyond all parallel, were one and the same. He offered, not as the deceiver, a corrupt thing, Mal. 1. 14; but his

pure

and innocent self, in whom there was no spot or blemish. He offered up himself, not meerly through an human spis

rit, but through a Divine Eternal one ; through his Chap. 7. Divinity, which aspired an eternal vigor and fragrancy into his Sacrifice, so that it needed not, as the legal ones, any reiteration : for, as the Apostle hath it, be hath by one offering perfected for ever ikem that are Sanclified, Heb. 10. 14. This is that great Sacrifice, more than all other sacrifices, which satisfied Justice, expiated moral guilt, averted the wrath of Heaven, and procured an eternal redemption for us.

Further, Christ was not only the substance of the sacrifices, but of the High-Priests also. He hath the true holy garments, the graces of the Spirit : the true Urim and Thummim, lights and perfe&ions. His girdle is Truth, his golden bells pure Doctrine , his anointing the Spirit and Power. He entred not with the blood of Goats and Calves into the Holy of Holies here below, but with his own blood into Heaven, there to appear in the presence of God, and bear the names of his people upon his heart. He is an HighPriest above all high-priests; not a meer man, but God, whose Deity poured out an infinite virtue upon his Sacrifice.He was not made an High-Priest only, but made such by an oath ; The Lord Svoare,Thou art á Priest for ever after the order of Melchizedeck, Hebr. 7.21. "The Aaronical Priesthood was temporary

and of less moment, but Christs was unchangeable and of far greater moment ; hence God pawned his Holiness, Life, Being it self, to make it immutable for ever. Other high-priests died as men; but Christ, though he died as a Sacrifice, yet as an High-Priest he lives for ever: hence the Apostle saith , That he was a Priest after the power of an endless life, Heb. 7.

16. His Deity made him an everliving Priest, and tranf

fused

[ocr errors]

ning down

Chap. 7. fused an endless life of merit into his Sacrifice. He is

consecrated for evermore, Heb. 7. 28. He is a perfed Priest, the efficacy of his Sacrifice is perpetual: the holy Unction on his head is indeficient, and ever run

upon

believers. This is the great HighPriest, the substance of all those under the Law.

Lastly: The truth of Gods Worship is set forth in and by Christ. Though the truth and sincerity of Worship were required under the Law; though external Worship as well as internal, be due under the Gospel; yet the truth of Worship was never so excellently set forth, as it is in and by Christ. This appears in three or four things.

1. The matter of Worship is now more free and pure than it wasz the clog of Ceremonies and ritual observ. ances,is now removed. Under the Law there was abundance of Carn Ordinances,a great number of Sacrifices, Circumcisions, Washings, Purifyings, Fringes, Festivals, Travels to the Temple,and distinctions of meats; but in and by Christ the yoke is broken, the carnal Ordinances cease, and all is turned into spirituality. Our Sacrifice is to present and consecrate our felves to God, which is a service highly reasonable, and indeed no other than the right posture of the soul towards him. Our Circumcision is in the spirit, and a cutting off the corrupt flesh of it. Our Washing is that of Regeneration and Reformation. Our Purifying is that of Faith, which purifies the heart by the Blood and Spirit of Christ apprehended by it. Our Fringes are no outward ones, those being supplied by the Law in the heart. Christ is our Passover; the Holy Spirit poured out, our Pentecost. Our Feast is tai dobria apetler, to do our duty, as one

Caith: To delight in works of Virtue, as another Chap. 7. hath it. There is now no tye to this or that place : Omnis locus viro bono templum, Every place is a Temple to a good man ; Every-where we may lift

up

holy hands to God. Nor any distinctions of meat ; To the

pure all things are pure. The Levitical uncleanness in beasts, did shadow out the moral úncleanness in men : Quod Judæi vitabant in pecore, id nos vitare oportet in more ; What the Jews avoided in the beast, that we are to avoid in our conversation. If there be no discretion of things in us, the beast doth not part the hoof; if no heavenly rumination, it doth not chew the cud. An idle person is a fish without fins or scales, seldom in motion. An earthly man is a creeping thing, that goes upon his belly, and feeds on duft. Thus in and by Chrift Religion is refined, the load of carnal and ritual observations is cast off, and Worship is brought forth in its pure and spiritual glory.

2. The mode of Worship is excellently set forth in the Gospel. God, who is a Spirit, must be served as becomes him, in spirit and truth: There must be a lowliness and humility of mind, a reverence and godly fear, an elevation and devotional ascension of the soul to God, a filial love and obedience to his command, a single eye, a pure intention at his glory, a divine fervour and freedom of spirit in the work, a faith in the great Mediator for acceptance, a waiting and holy expectancy upon God, that he would bless his own Ordinance, and irradiate the duty with the light of his countenance. It's true, this mode of Worship was known under the Old Teftament; but it was never so illustrioully set forth

و

as?

Chap 7:

as by our Saviour Jesus Christ. As a Painter, faith Theophylact, doth not destroy the old lineaments, but only make them more glorious and beautiful; fo did Christ about the Law, by his pure discoveries he put a gloss and glory upon the Divine Worship.

3. The help to Worship is communicated in and by Jesus Christ

. The Holy Spirit, which first newframes the heart for pure spiritual Worship, and then stirs up and actuates the holy Graces in it, is more Jargely afforded under the Gospel than ever it was before. Under the Law there were some dews and droppings of it in the Jewish Church ; but under the Gospel it is poured out upon all flesh. It was a Judaical axiom, The Divine Majesty dwelis in none without the Land of Israel. But after Jesus Christ had by his sweet-smelling Sacrifice purchased the Spirit, and in the glory of his Merits had ascended into Heaven, he shed forth the Spirit in a rich and abundant measure upon all sorts of men, Jews and Gentiles: Into what place foever the Gospel comes, there the Spirit is at work to frame new creatures, and set them in motion, that God may be served, not in the oldness of the letter, but in the newness of the Spirit ; that his Worship under the gales and sweet influences of the Spirit may come forth, as it ought, in its life and pure spirituality.

4. The great motive to Worship, the reward of eternal life, was never fo manifested as it was by Jesus Christ. It's true, holy men of old had some glimmerings of it; Abraham fought after an heavenly Country; Jacob waited for Gods salvation ; Moses h.id respect to the recompence of Reward; Job speaks of seeing God in his flesh; the believing-Jews

could

« AnteriorContinua »