Page images





Exod. xxiii. 21.--My name is in him.


er into gracious prly, in their

THESE words are a part of the instructions that God dee

1 livered unto Moses for the use of the church of Israel, from mount Sinai. They were now upon their march through the howling wilderness towards the land of Canaan, which God had promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and to their seed: and to encourage them against the fears of wandering, or losing their way, he assures them of a safe convoy, and that under an infallible guide. ..

More particularly, in these two verses I have read, notice, .

1. A gracious promise of Christ, as a leader and commande er unto Israel : ver. 20. “ Behold, I send an Angel before thee, to lead thee in the way, and to bring thee into the place which I have prepared.” This Angel was none other than Christ, the great and uncreated Angel of the covenant, as is evident by comparing this text with Exod. xxxiv. 34. Acts vii. 38. 39. I Cor. x. 9. Exod. xiii. 21. and Exod. xiv. 19.: and we find in the context, that the pardon of fin is ascribed to him, which is only God's prerogative. Christ is called an Angel, because he is the great messenger of heaven to this low, er world, “the fent of God," as the word signifiez. And here he comes as a guide and guardian to Israel, in their tra. vels through the wilderness to the promised land, which was a type and shadow of what he was to be, and what he would do unto his church and people under the New Testament, according to that promise, Is. Iv. 4. “ Behold, I have given him

· for

[ocr errors]

for a witness to the people, a leader and commander to the people.” Observe, It is glorious encouragement to the travel. lers to glory to hold on their way, that Christ goes before them as the breaker up of their way, “ Behold, I fend mine Angel hefore thee,” &c. See also to this purpose, Mic. i:. last verse, “ The breaker is come up before them : they have gone forth, they have passed through the gate, their King Thall pass before them, and the Lord of hosts on the lead of them.”

2. We have here the charge that is given to Israel with reference unto this Angel, Jefus Christ: “ Beware of him, and obey his voice, provoke him not." Q. d. Take care that you follow his counsel, obey his commandments, and behave your. felves with all suitable regard towards him, without grieving his Spirit, by turning aside to the ways of your own hearts; let him have full trust and credit, and beware of disobedience or rebellion against him.

3. We have an awful cercification in case of disobedience and obftinacy in fin: “He will not pardon your transgreso fions.” Quest. How doth this agree with that title given him, Exod. xxxiv. 6.7. “The Lord God, pardoning iniquity, transgreffion, and sin ?" Or with that promisi, “l, even I am he that blotteth out thine iniquities for mine own naine's fake?" Answ. Although he pardons the iniquities of the wicked, that forsake their wicked ways and linful thoughts, and turn unto God through him, yet he will not pardon the iniquiries of the obftinate and impenitent finner: 1o, "he will wound the head of his enemies, and the hairy scalp of all them that go on in their trespasies." Or the meaning may be, He will not pardon your transgreffions without a ransom or satisfaction ; and in this fenfe we are told, in the forecired Exod. xxxiv.7. “ihat he will by no means clear the guilty;" he will by no me:ns justify the guilty finner, without a perfect righteousness provided and accepted..

4. We have here a weighty reason given why they were to obey his voice, and to beware of provoking him ; why, says the Lord, My name is in him.

Where two things are considerable, (r.) The great thing whereby God makes hin.self known among the chidren of men, and that is his name. (2.) Where this name of God is to be read and seen in its brighicit characttrs, even in Chrift, the Angel of the covenant, who is the image of the invisible God: ily name is in him. The words will be further cleared in prosecutmg the following obfervation. DOCT. “ That an avful regard is due unto Chriit, our glori

ous Imniaarel, because the name of God is in him. Beware

of him and obey his voice, provoke him not :” for my name is in him.

Now, in discoursing this doctrine, through divine pity, I shall endeavosr to observe the order following.

I. I would, mention what the name of God is, and prove that it is in Chrift.

II. Give you some of the qualities of the name of God as displayed in Chrift.

ill. How or in what manner is the name of God in him. IV. Why it is in him. V. Mak: fome practical improvement on the whole.

1. The first thing is, to inquire what is the name of God as revealed in the word, and few that every one of his names is in Christ.

1. Then, the name of God is just God himself: Psal. xx. 1. "The name of the God of Jacob defend thee;" i. e. the God of Jacob himself be thy defence, Psal. cxv, I. “Not unto us, not unto us, but unto thy name be the glory; that is unto thee be the glory. The word name is frequently in scripture put for the thing or being designed by it, as Acts i. 15. it is said, " The number of the names were an hundred and twenty;" that is, the number of the persons. So here, says God, My name, that is, my very being and clience, is in him. And that it is to indeed, is evident beyond all contradiction from John xiv. 11. " I am in the Father, and the Father in me." John xiv. 7. “ If ye had known me, ye thould have known my Father also ; and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.” Unto which Philip replies, ver. 8. “ Lord, flew us the Father, and it sufficeth us." Christ answers, ver. 9. “Have I been so long time with you, and yet halt thou not known me, Philip ? he that hath feen me, haih seen the Father; and how sayit thou, Shew us the Father?” So that you see God hinself is in Chrift, 2 Cor. v. 19. “God was in Chrit reconciling the world to himself.” And if you would know who Christ is, and what he is, the apostle will tell you, that he is just God himself manifested in the flesh, i Tim. ii. laft, Oh! Sirs, pause here, stand still, and wonder at this strange thing that God has wrought in the earth; the divine and human nas ture linked together in a personal union in our glorious Im. manuel. So then the meaning of the words, My name is in: him, is all one as if he had said, I am in him, my nature, my being and effence is in him ; and therefore, whenever you look on hin, behold me in him ; for le is " in the form of God,


and thinks it no robbery to be equal with God." Sirs, be aware of the mistaken and blasphemous notions of Christ that fome, particularly the blasphemous Arians and Socinians, would give you, as though he were a different being, and of a distinct and inferior nature from his Father; for he and the Father are ore, the same in substance, equal in power and glory, r. There are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Spirit; and these three are one.". So then, I say, the name of God in Chrift, is just God himself; and this will further appear from what is to follow. And there. fore,

2. God's name is his titles that are peculiar to himself; and these we find in scripture are every where ascribed unto Chrift, the Angel of the covenant. To mention in a few ; his name is JEHOVAH. This is a name peculiar unto the self-existent, fupreme, and independent God, who hath his being of him: self, without depending upon another, even “ him who is, and was, and is to come. Thy name alone is JEHOVAH, most high over all the earth.” This great name we find frequently ascribed unto Christ, with some additional epithets. To encourage your faith, he is sometimes designed Jehovah-ZABAOTH, “the Lord of hosts,” to thew his absolute authority, that he has all power in heaven and in earth, and the armies of both under his command. Sometimes he is called JEHOVAHRophi, because he heals the broken in heart, and binds up all their wounds. Sometimes JEHOVAH-TsipkENU, “the Lord four righteousness,” because he brings in an everlasting righteousness for the justification of condemned Ginners. Sometimes JEHOVAH SHAMMAH, “the Lord is there," because he is with his people always, unto the end of the world. Sometimes JEHOVAH JIREH, “ the Lord will fee or provide," because, when the poor and needy seek water, he will hear, help, and supply. Sometimes JEHOVAH-Nissi, because he gives a banner unto them that fear him, that it may be displayed because of truth.

3. God's name is his word; for by it he makes his mind known unto the children of men. And this name of his is in Chrift: hence he is called, in a way of eminence, “the Word of God,” John i. 1. 2. 3. 14. Rev. xix. 13.“His name is calle ed, The Word of God.” Hence, when the word of God, or the precious truths of the gospel are held, Christ reckons his name held. Rev. ii. 13. says the Lord to the church of Pergamos, " I know thy works, that thou holdest fast my name, and haft not denied my faith.” Thou koldest fast my name, that is,

thou retains the gospel in its purity. The whole word of · God, and all the truths of it, are in Chrift; he is the great

oracle oracle of Heaven that reveals them : Rev. v. no man was found able to open the book with the seven seals, till the Lion of the tribe of Judah did it. All the commands of the law of God, are issued unto us in and through him; hence lays the Lord here to Israel, “ Beware of him, and obey his voice." He is constitute the King and Lawgiver of the church, and whatever laws do not bear the stamp of his authority, and are touched with his royal sceptre, they should have no regard paid to them in the church of God. And as all the laws, so all the promises of God are in him, and in him they are “ yea and amen;" they are just the articles of his latter will and tertament. He is the marrow and substance of the whole revelation, and of all the truths thereof, they meet in him as their centre; hence we read of “ knowing the truth as it is in Jesus.” And whatever doctrines or sermons do not hang upon and quadrate with this foundation God hath laid in Zion, they are but hay and stubble that are to be burned ; the sweetness of every truth lies in the connection that it bears unto him, and in its being a vehicle to convey the grace that is in Chriit unto our souls. So that, I say, this name of God is in Christ.

4. God's works are his name : Psal. viji. 1. David there, viewing the glory of God, as it is expressed in his works, cries, “How excellent is thy name in all the earth!” Now, this name of his is in Christ. Is his name the Creator of all things, that ftretched out the heavens, and laid the foundations of the earth? Why, this name of his is in Christ: John i. 3. “ Without him was not any thing made that was made.” Pfal. xxxiii. 6. * By the word of the Lord,” viz. of Christ, as the context clears, “ were the heavens made : and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.” Is the name of God, the glorious Preserver and Governor of all things? Why, this name is in Chrift: Heb. i. 3. “ He upholdeth all things by the word of his power;" and Col. i. 16. 17. there we see both the works of creation and providence ascribed unto him, “ By him were all things created that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visble and inviable, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him. And he is before all things, and by him ali things conlft.”

5. God's name is his worship: Exod. xx. 24.“ In all places where I record my name, there will I come unto you, and will bless you." This is a glory that he will not give to another; it is idolatry to make any thing or person in heaven or in ear.h the object of worship and adoration, but God alone, If xlii. 8. Matth. iv. 10. And therefore we find that when divine worship is offered unto angels, they reject it as a thing not




« PreviousContinue »