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and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen." Rev. i. 5, 6. But this leads me
III. To take a view of the church's Lord as the object of divine worship
1. He is the supreme God. The same divine na. ture and perfections belong equally, independently, and incommunicably to him, as to the Father and Holy Spirit. The divine nature is one, though subsisting in such a manner as to constitute three distinct divine per: sons. " For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one." i John v. 7. “ In him a wells all the fulness of the God-head bodily; he, therefore, ac. counts it no robbery to be equal with God.” Col. ii. 9. Phil. ii. 6. More unequivocal terms could not be used to express the supreme Deity of the Father. In vir. tue of this oneness of nature subsisting between the Father and the Son, there is a unity in their operations; the divine acts of the one are equally the acts of the other, “ For whatsoever things the Father doeth, these also doeth the Son.” John v. 19. The divine nature is the principle and spring of all operation, and as this is one in all the three persons, their operations must be one. It is on this account that the works of creation and providence, are ascribed equally to each of them, And indeed it is impossible the same works should be ascribed to each, if they were not one God. The same thing holds true in the work of the new creation: the conversion, pardon and sanctification of sinners, are a. scribed to the Father and Son equally, though there are particular parts in the scheme peculiar to each.
This divine excellence, and essential unity of the diyine persons, is the foundation and reason of all divine
worship: and as each of these persons equally possesses the divine nature, they are equally the object of divine worship, and to each of them distinctly are divine honours to be offered. The Mediator's claim to divine wor. ship, is his possessing supreme Deity. This is the same in whatever work he is employed. In the production of the universe he acted as a divine Creator, in providence, he acts as a divine Governor, and in redemption work he acts as a divine Redeemer. Supreme Deity alone was competent to such works, and in all of them it is very gloriously displayed. In the economy of grace, as carried on by the three divine persons, each of them displays supreme Deity, and acts in his personal character, though in a manner agreeable to the nature of the economy, and his peculiar work in executing it. When we consider these divine persons in their economical characters, and conducting their respective departments in the scheme, we must beware of fixing our minds upon an abstract character, and excluding the consideration of supreme Deity and Divine personality. We cannot distinguish between the Father and the reprentative of Deity, nor between the Son and the Mediator, as these are one. But we may distinguish the Sonship of Christ from his Mediatory capacity, as also from his characters of Creator and moral Governor ; because he would have been the Son of God though no creatures had ever been formed. In whatever character we consider any divine person, Creator, Law.giver, moral Governor, or Saviour, he is the same divine person, possesses the same divine nature, and is the same object of divine worship, because in each of these characters he possesses and displays his God head which is the ground of his claim to it.
2. The works of God are not the ground and reason of his title and claim to worship.
It has been already observed that his supreme Deity is the sole ground of his claim to divine honours. Were we to found this claim in his works, it would lead us to conclude, that, on the supposition these works had never existed, there was nothing in himself rendering him worthy of divine honours. But God cannot be worshipped unless he make himself known. This he does by his works; and the more extensive these works are, and the greater variety that obtains among them, his divine excellence will be more gloriously displayed, and the worship to which he is entitled, with the manner of performing it, will be more clearly discovered. His perfections are written in legible characters upon his works. “ The invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and God head.” Rom. i. 20. The Psalmist frequently gives the same view of him in his works. “ The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handy work.” Psalm xix. 1. - According to thy name, O God, so is thy praise unto the ends of the earth.” Psalm xlviii. 10. “ For that thy name is near thy wondrous works declare." Psalm Ixxv. 1. The work of salvation exhibits a more won. derful and glorious display of him than all his other works besides: it discovers the Trinity of divine persons, a truth not discoverable by any other means that we know; and some perfections appear which other. wise would never have been known. His work of grace in the soul gives the most astonishing and striking discoveries of his divine excellence, and makes the evidence of it in his works and in the Scriptures appear
in a very different light. "God has not left himself without a witness.” The marks of his footsteps are evident in every work of his. " O Lord, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches." Psalm civ. 24. Extensive, accurate, and exalted conceptions of God will be the result of a due consideration of his works, especially the stupenduous work of redemption. Every divine per. fection will be seen displayed in a most astonishing manner, filling the mind with awe, reverence and wonder, and disposing it to love and adoration.
The works of the Mediator, in executing his part of the scheme of salvation, are truly wonderful, and divine. In them he displays his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father. They all discover him to be God, nor could he, without supreme Deity, have executed any part of his mediatory work. Sin must have remained unexpiated, continued to reign in the heart, and Satan for ever maintained his power over the sinner. But he redeemed sinners in his humbled state, and is now exalted to the right hand of majesty, in order to save them, and in every thing he does Deity shines forth. All his operations are divine, at the same time that they are economical; and it is that Divinity which he possesses and displays in these works, which founds his claim to divine honours, but not the works themselves.
It is true, when we consider these works with respect to ourselves, as tending to promote our interest, we on that account love, esteem, and praise him. But these are more properly motives to excite us, on our own account to praise him, than the grounds of his title. Besides whatever advantage we derive from any of his works, it consists wholly in the enjoyment of himself, in proportion to the advantage we receivé. We adore him for what he is in himself, and bless him for what he is to us.
3. The Mediator must be worshipped in the same character in which his works discover him. "
We have no other way of knowing him but by his works, of which his word is a part. These point out what is his nature, what are his perfections, his personal and economical characters. Viewed in himself he is a divine person, possessed of all divine perfections, and so is infinitely worthy of divine worship: viewed with respect to his works he is Creator, Law.giver, moral Governor and Redeemer. In each of these he is divine, that is, Deity is possessed and displayed by him in each of these characters. The Creator is God; and creation is the work of Deity alone: the Redeemer is God; and his work, in that character, is the work of Deity alone. He is not God because he is Creator, Redeemer, &c. but he sustains these characters, and acts in them, because he is God. These characters are inseparable from his person, and also from one another; and although they are of distinct consideration, it is impossible to conceive the Son of God but as clothed with all of them.
In the ascription of worship to the Son, we are not only to take into our consideration his Deity, but the manner in which he has displayed it, and our 'worship must have a special respect to such display, and the character which he sustained in giving it. This is the import of the language of the Psalmist. Psalm xlviii. 10. “ According to thy name, O God, sɔ is thy praise unto the ends of the earth.” God's name is evidently those displays of his power, justice and grace in the salvation of his church,