Изображения страниц

dreadful Downfal of him that is alone, Christ's Bride may difcern her unparallelled Happiness by being wedded to Chrift, 2 Cor. xi. 2. She is now so near a Kin to God the Father as to be styled by the Holy Ghoit The King's Daughter, who is all glorious within, because Christ dwells in her Heart, the Hope of Glory, and her Clothing is of wrought Gold, compleat Redemption, Pjal. xlv. 13. The Holy Ghost styleth it wrought Gold, on account of the inestimable Worth of it, for it was designed from Eternity, and actually begun by Christ her Hufband the Moment he descended from Heaven, and became the holy Seed, which produced the holy Body that was born of the Virgin Mary; and altho' he was God, and wrought upon it every Day of his Life, yet it was not compleated until the Moment he cryed out It is finished, and bowed bis Head, and gave up the Ghost, John xix. 30.

And this inestimable Gold - wrought Robe of Righteousness, Christ the Maker and Owner thereof gives on the Wedding day unto the Bride, (every Soul whom he espouses) as appears by what follows: for faith he, “ I will betroth, i. e, marry thee to me for ever; yea, I will betroth thee unto me in Righceousness, and in Judgment, and in Loving-kindnets, and in Mercies : and I will even betroth thee unto me in Faithfulness, and thou shalt krow the Lord," Hof. ii. 19, 20. Now thou wilt fay, “ I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my Soul shall be joyful in my God, for he hath clothed me with the Garments of Salvation, he hath covered me with a Robe of Righteousness as a Bridegroom decketh himself with Ornaments, and as a Bride adorneth herself with her Jewels,” Ifa. Ixi. 10. As Christ the Bridegroom decketh himself with the ornamental Righteousness of the Law, having fulfilled it, and made it honourable, and then imputęs this ornamental Rightcousness to his Bride, Rom.iv. 6,11. To ihe receives it by Faith, and is thereby juftified before God; and thus the adorneth herfelt with every inestimable Jewel, which God has annexed to his Inheritance, and promised to the Man who always keeps and never breaks his Law, which is every precious Promise of Reward which God has given in all the Scriptures to his Church, and includes more than can be expressed, even


is such as Eye hath not seen, nor Ear heard, neither hath it entered into the Heart of Man to conceive the Things God has prepared and laid up for his Son's Bride, who loveth him," i Cor. ii.


And this will appear to be abundantly confirmed when we consider God's Love to her from Eternity : that she was chosen in Christ before the Foundation of the World; that for the purpose of Salvation the World was created, and the Means of Grace given, that she should be holy and without Blame before him in Love, Eph. i. 4. Having saved us, and called us with an holy Calling, not according to our own good Works, but according to his own Purpose and Grace which was given us in Christ before the World began, 2 Tim. i. 9. Thus faith the Scripture, speaking in the prophetic Style, “ The Lord hath appeared of old unto me (the Church) say. ing, I have loved thee with an everlasting Love, (i. e. from everlasting,) therefore with Lovingkindness have I drawn thee." Again, “ I will build thee, and thou shalt be built, O Virgin of Israel (O Bride of God) for thy Maker is thine Husband, the Lord of Hosts is his Name : thou shalt be adorned again with thy Tabrets, and shalt go forth in the Dances of them that make merry,Jer. xxxi. 3, 4. Ifa. liv. 5... viz. with those who praise the Lord with joyful Lips, Pfal. Ixiii. 5. And being adorned with Christ's Righteousness, thou shalt dance with Joy in the Holy Ghost, like David before the Ark of God, 2 Sam. vi. 2, 14. And as David had

. Reason to rejoice in having the Ark of God in Pofiession, being a Type of Christ, who is the Fountain of all Blessings ; it being the Ark of the Covenant between God and his Church under the Law, wherein was kept the two Tables, containing the ten Commandments, the golden Pui with Manna, and Aaron's Rod that budded, Heb. ix. 4. So the Believer hath Reason to rejoice in Christ, who is the true Ark of the Covenant given by God to the People (his Church). Ija. xlii. 6. under the Gospel, who kept entire in himself the ten Commandments, in the Believer's (his Bride's) behalf, without breaking one Jot or Title of them. And in him is the true golden Pot of hidden Manna, Viz. his loving Heart, his Favour, better than Life itselt; which he giveth to him that overcometh; and all the Branches of the Root of Helle, the Offspring of David, when kept safe in Christ, the true Ark, bud and blossom like Aaron's Rod : for he that abideth in me, faith Christ, the fame beareth much Fruit. But until this glorious Root and Offspring of David, this bright and Morning Star arise in our Hearts, we continue dead and fruitless, and can do nothing, John xv. 5. But blessed be God who designed him from Eternity, to be the Day star and the Sun of Righteousness, to arise and . give Light within the Heart of every one of his that cometh into the World, namely, the new World of Grace; and when he arifeth in the Soul, there is Healing in his Wings, Mal. iv. 2. God from Eternity, for the Bride's fake, decreed the Death o his Son, to ransom her from the Power of Sin, the Sting of Death and the Bands of the Devil: for he was the Lamb fain from the Foundation of the World, Rev. xiii. 8. By Virtue of a


Covenant made between God and Christ before Satan made War in Heaven, or rebelled againit God, Rev. xii. 7. " The Lord possessed me, (laith Christ) in the Beginning of his Way, before his Works of old. I was set up from Everlasting, from

, the Beginning or ever the Earth was. When he prepared the Heavens, I was there: rejoicing always before him : rejoicing in the habitable Part of his Earth, and my Delights were with the Sons of Men,” Prov. viii. 22, 23, 27, 30, 31. Thus we find Christ had undertook to be the Surety of his Bride, before the Earth or Heavens were made, and delighted himself with the Thoughts of being by and by, in the Fulness of Time with the Sons of Men, not yet created: consequentiy we hear of the Formation of the World, of Man's Creation, of his Fall, and the Promise of Christ, the Seed of the Woman, that should bruise the Serpent's Head, Gen. iii. 15. And we find that God was plealed in his great Mercy to promile Christ to Adam the Evening of the same Day wherein he fell. For God came to our Parents after the Fall, in the Cool of the Day, to convince them of their Error, which is often his Way of dealing with his People : he does not always convince or reprove immediately after the Committing of Sin, as we may observe with Regard to David's Sin, reprehended by Nathun, 2 Sam. Xii. 13. And after God's gracious Promise to Adam, all the Ordinances given by God for the Edification of the Church under the Mofaick Dispensation, were Types of Christ, and Shadows of heavenly Things to come ; and not the very Image of the Things (or Sacrifice of Christ) Heb. X. I. for the Law made nothing perfect, but was calculated to typity a better Covenant, Heb. vii. 19. Therefore when Christ, who was given for a Covenant to the People, cometh into the World, he

faith, xiii. 7:

faith, “ Sacrifice and Offering thou wouldest not, but a Body haft thou prepared me.

In Burnt offerings and Sacrifices for sin thou hait no Pleasure. Then said I, Lo! I come, (in the Volume of the Book it is written of me) to do thy Will, O God,Heb. x. 5; 6, 7 Now God takes away the Shadow to establish (Christ) the Substance and when he had done the Will of God in fulfilling the Law, by his active Obedience in the Church's stead ; then it being the determinate Countel of God that he should die for the Sins of his Bride : divine Justice proclaims, “ Awake, O Sword, against my Shepherd, and against the Man that is my Fellow, faith the Lord of Hoits, imite the Shepherd, and the Sheep shall be fcattered;" Zech.

. All which was performed when Christ was crucified. His Disciples Aed, and he was arraigned and condemned to the Cross : then one of the Soldiers with his Spear pierced his Side, and forthwith came thereout Blood and Water, John xix. 34, 35. Now the Fountain was opened according to the Promise, “ In that Day there shall be a Fountain opened to the House of David, and to the Inhabitants of Jerusalem, viz. the Church militant, for Sin and for uncleanness,” Zech. xiii. I. It shall be opened in the Side of the Man that is my Fellow, faith God, the Man that hath ftruck Hands, or entered Surety, I'll smite him, the Shepherd, for the Sins of the Sheep, and I'll open a Fountain to wash them clean: thus, died Christ, to justify and sanctify his Bride. " For the Blood of Jesus Christ (and his only by Faith cleanteth from all Sin," i John i. 7.

« Known unto God are all his Works from the Foundation," Aets xv. 18. And Christ “ saw of the Travel of his Soul, and was latisfied," Isa. liii. 11. viz. fatisfied to lay down his Life, forasmuch as the Sheep fhould be thereby gathered


[ocr errors]
« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »