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not to take en him the nature os angels, but the human nature, in the feed of Abraham
Afhly, See hence to what a pitch of honour the human nature is raised, by its standing in a personal union with the infinite Jehovah, in the person of the Son of God. When we take a view of our nature as it stood in the first Adam, even in innocencjr, why, the spirit of God declares by the psalmist, that even in its best estate it was altogether vanity, being but a fallible creature: but view the nature of man in his fallen state, we fee him lying in a " horrible pit, and miry clay," an object of abhorrence to God and all his holy angels; he is wholly " corrupt and filthy," fit for nothing but to become fuel for the fire of divine wrath: and yet for an infinitely holy and righteous God to take that nature out of the dunghill, and join it into a personal union with his eternal and only begotten Son, why, this is a brighter crown of glory by far set upon the human nature, than ever Adam wore in innocencyj yea, a greater honour than ever was conferred upon the nature of angels. Oh! how may this make every one of us to cry, " What hath God wrought? O what is man, that thou art so mindful of him? and what the son of man, that thou a« so kind unto him."
Sth/y, See hence the excellency of the person of our glorious Redeemer, whose death we are this day called to commemorate. I remember the daughters of Jerusalem put a question unto the spouse, Cant. v. « What is thy beloved more than another beloved?" Why, Sirs, there is something in the person of Christ, that is not to be seen in any person in heave<i or in earth. What is that? fay you: Why, in his person is to be seen God and man linked in a personal union ; "God manifested in the flelh, is the great mystery" of the Christian religion. Look to God in the person of the Father, look to God in the person of the Holy Ghost, and you see indeed the great God, who is infinite, sternal, and unchangeable in his being, wisdom, power, holiness, &c. But then, look to God in the person os the Son, who is the sime God with both and you see the human nature; there you see "Immanuel* God-man, God with us, God reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them, but pardoning iniquity, transgression, and sin." O Sirs, a God in Christ will be the admiration of saints and angels through eternity; and it isa view of this person that sills the mouths of all the Lints with praise, saying, "Thou art fairer than the childn.n of men; grace is poured into thy lips; he is white and ruddy, the chief among ten thousand," &c.
tthlj, See htnee the criminal nature of the sin of unbelief,
which rejects him who took not on him the nature of angels, but the feed of Abraham. Unbelief upon the matter denies this glorious truth, and fays, ' No thanks to God for taking hold of the feed of Abraham; he might as well have taken on the nature of angels, for I will not be obliged to him for falvatipn.' The unbeliever chooses rather to go to hell with his lusts, than to go to heaven with Christ: he crucifies "the Son of God afresh, and puts him to an open shame:" he tramples the blood of Christ under his feet; for which reason Christ declares, that he " that believeih not is condemned already, and the wrath of God abideth on him," John iii. 18. 36.
"Jthly, See, from this doctrine, the great difference between the first and the second Adam; the head of the covenant of works, and the head of the new covenant. Why, the first Adam, as the apostle tells us, was but a made creature, and he " was made a living foul; but the last Adam is a quickening spirit: the first Adam was of the earth earthy; but the second Adam is the Lord from heaven:'' who look not on him the nature of angels, but task on him the human nature, in the feed of Abraham. O what a blessed exchange doth the sinner make, when he quits the first Adam and his covenant, and betakes himself to a second Adam, and takes hold of him as the head of the covenant of grace! when he doth so, he quits the foundation of sand, and builds upon that " rock of ages, against which the gates of hell (hall never prevail." The first Adam is a fountain of death to all his posterity, Rom. v. 12. "By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death pallid upon all men, for that all have sinned;" but the second Adam is the fountain of life to all his feed; *' I am the resurrection, and the life; and he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:" and this we are allured of by the record of a glorious Trinity, 1 John v. 11. "This is the record, that God hath given to us, eternal life, and this life is in his Son."
Sthly, See, from this doctrine, what is the great work and business of these who (it down at a communion table; what it is that makes a worthy or unworthy communicant. That which makes a worthy communicant, is a " right discerning of the Lord's body;'' and^hen this is wanting, a man becomes *' guilty of the body anu^blood of the Lord, and so eats and drinks judgement to his own soul." Now, what is it to discern the Lord's body? It is just an insight into this doctrin?, or text, that the eternal Sou of God, he took not on him the nature of avgelts but the fed of Abraham. More particularly, I will tell you two or three things included in discerning the Lord's body.
1 (i.) It
(1.) It is to have the mind enlightened viith a favi'-; knowledge of the mystery of salvation, as the plan of it is laid out before us in the word, or in the person and mediation of Jtsus, 2 Cor. iv. 6. " God who commanded the light to lhine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give t ,ie light of the knowledge of the glory 6f God in the face of Jesus Christ."
(2.) It is to fee the love and wisdom of the Father, in preparing a body for his eternal Son, in which the fulness of the Godhead should dwell, as in a temple.
(3.) It is to fee the Holy Ghost forming that body, by his overlhadowing power, in the womb of the virgin, so as that it might be free of original fin, and might be a sacrifice without spot or blemish, to be offered up unto God.
(4.) It is to fee the eternal Son of God wearing that body in >personal union with himself, in order to his giving an infinite value unto what he was to do and suffer for us.
(5.) It is to fee him offering up that body and blood, which ^ had thus assumed, in our room and stead, a sacrifice for the satisfaction of justice for our sin; for he offered up himself for °s " a sacrifice and offering of a sweet smelling savour;" to see the just suffering for the unjust, to bring us to God. Now, when the foul thus discerns the body of Christ, or the mystery of the incarnation of the Son of God, then faith eats his fleih and drinks his blood, like " fat things full of marrow, wines on the lees, well refined." Oh Sirs! fee if, like Samson, you can this day find the honey-combs of salvation, and the great and precious promises, in the carcase of the slain Lion of the tribe of Judah, for this " is meat indeed, and drink indeed."
Use second may be of Trial. Oh Sirs! what think you of him who took not on him the nature of angels, hut the feed of Abraham; have you given him Iris errand into the world, by believing in him? Is thy foul crying, " Hofanna to the Son "f David;" Oh !" blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord," to save us: Oh !" this is a faithful faying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief?" Is thy heart glowing Wth love to him, who is altogether lovely? and saying, Oh "whom have 1 in heaven" but him ?—" yea, doubtless, I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge °f Christ Jesus my Lord." We'll, if this be the disposition °f thy soul, I invite you to come and feast with him. "Eat, •J friends, drink, yea drink abundantly, O beloved. Eat ye 'hat which is good, and let your foul delight itself in fatness, and I will make an everlasting covenant with you,,*' Vol. HI. A a
dered in all things, and fure:" the whole good of the covenant is before you.
Ufe third oi Exhortation, to all hearing me, young and old, great and fmall, rich and poor. Whoever you are, if you be of the human kind, men and women, fprung of Adam; Oh! will ye anfwer the design of the Son of God, his taking on our nature, when he past by the nature of angels, by believing in him? The Father prefents him to you, as the object of his delight, that you may believe in him, Ifa. xlii. i. "Behold my fervant whom 1 uphold, mine elect in whom my foul delighteth," &c. Christ himfelf invites and calls us to this, Ifa. xlv. 22. " Look unto me, and be ye faved, all the ends of die earth, for I am God, and there is none elfe."
S^uejl. What will we behold, or fee, in an incarnate God? In him who took on him the feed of Abraham? when he passed by the nature of angels? Anfw. There are wonders to be feen in him, which the standing holy angels behold with admiration and eternal wonder. I. O come and fee an angry God reconciled; God looking out with a fmile upon the guilty sinners, through the veil of the human nature, 2 Cor. .v. 19. " God was in Christ reconciling the world to himfelf, not imputing their trefpasses unto them;" crying, "Fury is not in me", for the fake of him in whom I am well pleafed, Ifa. xii. 1. 2. Luke ii. 10—12. &c. 2. In him you may fee God dwelling with man upon earth, and " the whole earth silled with his glory." 3. In him you will fee the great God, that gives laws unto angels and men, made under his own law, that he might i>iaguify it, and make it honourable, that fo " the righteoufnefs of the law might be fulsilled in in," who had broken every command of it. 4. In him you will fec " the hand-writing which was against us," and bound 113 over to wrath, wo, and mifery, cancelled and torn; fo that you may cry, who can lay any thing to your charge? 5. In him you will fee the brandilhed and flaming fword of justice, that was ready to be foaked in the blood of the guilty sinner, awakening against the man who is God's fellow, Zech. xiii. 7. and having drunk of his royal blood, the fword is again put up in its fcabbard, and the white flag of peace cast out with this motto, " He hath made ptace by the blood of his crofs." 6. Here you will fee the head of the ,o!d ferpent bruifed, and the Lamb of God overcoming him by his own blood. "Through death he deilroyed him that had the power of death." 7. In him you will fee the two infuperable mountains of natural and moral distance between God and man removed, and made as a plain. The natural
distancedistance is reoioved in his incarnation, and the moral distance in his satisfaction. All bars and impediments that stood in onrway from law and justice removed, which could never have been effected by all the angels in heaven, or men upon earth; and yet this is done, and done by him, uAo took not on him the nature of angels, but the feed of Abraham. 8. Here you will fee " the veil of the temple rent from top to bottom, and the way to the holiest of all opened j" so that we may now " enter in with boldness by the blood of Jesus." *
The veil of the ceremonial law is rent, the veil of the curse of the moral law is rent, in the rending asunder of the soul and body of Christ upon Mount Calvary. 9. In him you miy see God, first marrying our nature into a personal union with himself, and then, having come upon a level with us, or having become one of our tribe, or family, presents himself as a Bridegroom, profering marriage with our persons} for this is the voice of hnmanuel God-man, If. liv. 5. " Thy maker is thine husband (the Lord-of hosts is his name)"; or, Hos. ii. 19. « J will betrothe thee unto me for ever; yea, I will betrothe thee unto roe in righteousness, and in judgement, and in loving-kindness, and in mercy; I will ever betrothe thee unto me in faithfulness, and thou shalt know the lard,'' viz. in a way of conjugal love and communion. '3. Here you will see him confirming the. covenant of grace *nd promise, and turning it into an inviolable testamentary deed, which no man can disannul. Dan. ix. 27. " He shall confirm the covenant with many." Heb. ix. 16. 17. " Where »testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator, for a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwife it is of no force at all while the testator liveth." Sirs, this is what we are to present you with in this holy ordinance of the supper, even the confirmed testament of him who took on him the feed of Abraham;" for Luke xxii. 29. "This cup (fays Christ) is the new testament in my blood," Matth. xxvi. 27. " drink ye all of it."
Secondly, Another word of exhortation is this. I call you who are the sons and daughters of Zion, not only to " go forth *nd behold king Solomon," and the wonders of his person snd mediation, but I call you to be his bride and spouse, by giving the heart and hand to him as the bridegroom. 'Let there be a match this day made up betwixt Christ and your fouls. Has the glorious Son of God, "the brightness of his father's glory," taken hold of your nature in the family of Abraham? O then take hold of him as your kinsman; ar.d ky> as ttuth did unto Boaz, " Spread thy ikirt over me,"