Page images
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

T

Acts 1. 8. But ye shall receive Power, when the

Holy Ghost is come upon you, and ye shall be

witnesses unto me, &c. Or,
Tou Maï receive the Power of the Holy Ghost
coming upon you.

HESE Words are the more Remarkable,
because the very last Words in the Con-

ference between the Son of God, and his
Beloved Apostles, immediately before his Ascen-
fion into Heaven. Now, you know, when dear
and intimate Friends are ready to part, as their
Love then ryns strongest, and their Affections are
most intire and vehement, so then also they espe-
cially discourse of those things, wherein most of
all they desire to be satisfied and resolved. Thus
was it between Christ and his Apostles ; Never was
there such dear and intimate Friendship, and such
fincere and burning Love between any, as between
them. The Apostles, all of them loved Christ
most truly, and passionately; and Peter, who
had three times denied him, three times professed
his Love to him; and being sorry that Christ
should question his Love the third time, he thus
answered, Lord, thou knowest all things, thou knowest Joh. 4.19.
that I love thee.' And Christ also loved them dear-Joh. 13.1.
ly; yea, he loved them first, and having loved his
emn, be loved them to the end; and so he was not

discontented

[ocr errors]

2

[ocr errors]

Christ's Spirit, a Christians Strength. discontented with them, for their leaving and forsaking him, through Humane Infirmity, when he was led away to Judgment, and to Death: For though Death quite puts out all Natural Love, yet Spiritual Love is not extinguished, but enlarged by Death. Now when such loving Friends as these, were even now ready to take their last leave of one another, in regard of Bodily Presence, who would not most willingly have been present, to have heard what Discourse pass'd between Chrift

and his Disciples, at this their last parting. The rumm

Now Luke acquaints us with the whole Sum and of Christ's Discourse

Substance of Christ's Discourse with his Apostles, witb bis all the time he lived together with them, after Disciples, his Resurrection, till the day wherein he Ascended after his into Heaven: In the third Verse of this Chapter, Resurre:, he faith, He did Discourse with them, de Regno bis Ascen- Dei, touching the Kingdom of God. That is, not fion. only touching his Spiritual Kingdom, which he fets

up in each particular Christian, and which begins
at our Regeneration, and is consummate in Glorifi-
cation: But also touching his Mediatory and Mo-
narchical Kingdom ; which, in the time appointed

of his Father, he should set up in the World ; Pal. 2. 8. When he should have the Heathen for his Inheritance, Dan.7.14. and the utmost ends of the Earth for his Poffeffion, and Plál.72.8. all People, and Nations, and Languages should ferve him, and he should Roign from

Sea to Sea, and from the River to the Worlds end. This was the sum of Christ's Discourse with them, and the Apostles were fully satisfied touching the thing, only they were unsatisfied touching the time. For besides, that the setting up of this Kingdom of the Messias in the Power, Beauty, and Glory of it, was ac tbat time the common discourse and expectation of all Ifrael; the Apostles themselves remembred many Prophecies and Promises of the Old Testament, for the Restoring the Kingdom of David;

and

[ocr errors]

and this they thought Christ would have done, in the days of his flesh: Bue presently, all their hopes were blasted by his death. But when they saw him rifen again from the dead, then presently their hearts were revived, into their former hopes; buc yet again, seeing nothing done, all the time he conversed with them after the Resurrection, when Dow he was ready to Ascend into Heaven, they defire him, first, to Resolve them this Question, whether or no he would at that time, restore the Kingdom to Ifrael; Lord (say they) Wilt thou at this time restore again the Kingdom to Israel? Now Christ doth not deny the restoring of the Kingdom to Israel, but denies to acquaint them with the time when it should be done." He tells them, it was nor for them to know the times and seasons, which tha Father bad put in bis own power, ver. 7.

The like Answer to the like Demand, Daniel received in his time. For when the Angel had represented to Daniel, the total destruction of the Image of worldly Monarchy, together with the rise and reign, and ruine of Antichrift, and the setting up of Chrifts Kingdom in the World, in the stead of the two former, Daniel said, Chap. 12. 8. And I beard, but I understood not; then said I, O my Lord, what fall be the end of these tbings? And he said, Go thy way Daniel, for ibe words are closed up and sealed til the time of the end. So that the Angel, who difcovered the things themselves to Daniel, refused to discover to him plainly and exprefly the time when they should be done; but that was to be closed and sealed up till the time of the end. And so here in like manner, Christ who had discoursed largely and clearly to the Disciples touching the Kingdom of God, yet denies to discover to them the time when it should be set up in the world. And the reason why he denied this to them, to whom he had not denied himself, was not for want of Love,

but

but because the Father had kept the time and seafon, wherein all this should be done, in his own power. Had this been placed in Christs power, he had no doubt made it known to them, as well as he did those other things, which he had heard froin his Father; but the Father had not placed this in his Sons power, but had reserved ic in his own; and the Apostles were not to pry after, that which was hidden with God, but were to content themfelves with what he had revealed.

But though the Son did not reveal to them what the Father had kept in his own power, yet he tells then, what the Father had promised unto them, and what he had also put into his power, and what he would certainly perform e'er long, and that was the gift of the Spirit of power, saying, But ye shall receive power when the Holy Ghost is come upon you, and you shall be witnesses to me, &c. As if he thould have said, Do not you trouble your selves about secret things, which shall not be accomplish'd in the world, till many years after you are fallen alleep ; but do you mind your present business, wherein you are to serve God, in your Generation; your present task is to be witnesses unto me, in Jerusalem, and all Judea, and in Samaria, and to the utmost parts of the Earth; to declare and make known, what you have heard, and seen with your eyes, and looked upon, and your hands have handled of the word of Life: You are to testifie to the World my Incarnation, Doctrine, Miracles, Life, Death, Resurrection, and my Kingdom and Glory, that is to come: You are to make known to the World, the high and deep, the great and glorious mystery of Christ and of the Gospel ; and that you may be fit for this great and weighty work, you shall receive the power of the Holy Ghost : Tou svall receive power, when the Holy Ghost is come upon

you, &c.

« PreviousContinue »