Page images
PDF
EPUB

“ Jesus

was through Christ alone under the law, equally as under the gospel, although he was not then revealed : Acts xv. 10, 11.

why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear ? but we believe that through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they.” Heb. xiii. 8. Christ the same yesterday, and to-day and for ever.” For although, under the law, as many as were able to keep all the commandments were justified, the promise extended only to happiness in this life : Deut. vi. 24, 25.“ Jehovah commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear Jehovah our God, for our good always, that he might preserve us alive, &c. .... and it shall be our righteousness if we observe to do all these command

But what neither the law itself nor the observers of the law could attain, faith in God through Christ has attained, and that even to eternal life.

ments.”

CHAP. XXVII.-OF THE GOSPEL AND CHRISTIAN LIBERTY. THE GOSPEL is THE NEW DISPENSATION OF THE COVENANT OF GRACE, FAR MORE EXCELLENT AND PERFECT THAN THE LAW, ANNOUNCED FIRST OBSCURELY BY MOSES AND THE PROPIIETS, AFTERWARDS IN THE CLEAREST TERMS BY CHRIS" HIMSELF, AND HIS APOSTLES AND EVANGELISTS,6 WRITTEN SİNCE BY THE HOLY SPIRIT IN THE HEARTS OF BELIEVERS,? AND ORDAINED TO CONTINUE EVEN TO THE END OF THE

6

But Joshua, whom the Gentiles Jesus call,
His name and office bearing, who shall quell
The adversary serpent, and bring back
Through the world's wilderness long-wandered man
Safe to the eternal Paradise of rest.

Paradise Lost, XII. 307.
Thy great Deliverer, who shall bruise
The Serpent's head; whereof to thee anon
Plainlier shall be revealed. 119.
The Woman's seed, obscurely then foretold,

Now amplier known thy Saviour and thy Lord. 513.
7 lle to his own a Comforter shall send,

The Promise of the Father, who shall dwell
His Spirit within them, and the law of faith
Working through love, upon their hearts shall write. 486.

WORLD, CONTAINING A PROMISE OF ETERNAL LIFE TO ALL IN EVERY NATION WHO SHALL BELIEVE IN CHRIST WHEN REVEALED TO THEM, AND A THREAT OF ETERNAL DEATH TO SUCH AS SIIALL NOT BELIEVE.

THE NEW DISPENSATION. Jex. xxxi. 31-33, compared with Heb. viii. 8. 9. “I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah, not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers. It is called the new testament,” Matt. xxvi. 28. Mark xiv. 24. Luke xxii. 20. 1 Cor. xi. 25. 2 Cor. iii. 6. But the word dicono, in the Hebrew ?? is generally used by the inspired writers for ouvonan, covenant, and is rendered in Latin by the word pactum, 2 Cor. ii. 14. Gal. iv. 24. veteris pacti.& The Gospel is only once called testament in a proper sense, and then for a particular reason which is subjoined. Heb. ix. 15, 16, &c. “ for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament that by means of death for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance ; for where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator."

MORE EXCELLENT AND PERFECT THAN THE LAW. Matt. xiii. 17. “ many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them, and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them.” 2 Cor. iii. 11, &c. “ if that which was done away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious. Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech ; and not as Moses.” Heb. vii. 18—20, 22. " the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did, by the which we drew nigh unto God: and inasmuch as not without an oath he was made priest; for those priests were made without an oath, but this with an oath .... by so much was Jesus made a surety of a better covenant. viii. 6, &c. ' by how much more also he is the mediator of a better cove

8 Beza's Translation. Testamentum Vetus. 'Tremellius. Veteris testamenti. Vulgate. • Notandum, quod Berith verbum Hebraicum, Aquita, Our Onkrjv, id est, pactum interpretatur : LXX. semper deaOnkiv id est, testamentum : et in plerisque scripturarum locis testamentum non voluntatem defunctorum sonare, sed pactum viventium.' Hieron. in Malach. cap. ii. quoted by Lardner, History of the Apostles and Evangelists.

[ocr errors]

66

ور

nant, which was established upon better promises, &c. ....I will put my laws into their mind.” James i. 25.

whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.” 1 Pet. i. 10, &c. “ of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you.... with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven ; which things the angels desire to look into.” The Gospel is also called “ the ministry and word of reconciliation,” 2 Cor. v. 18, 19. whereas on the contrary “the law worketh wrath,” Rom. iv. 15.

By MOSES AND THE PROPHETS. John v. 39. “they are they which testify of me.” v. 46. “had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me, for he wrote of me;" namely Gen. iii. 15. xxii. 18. xlix. 10. Deut. xviii. 15. Luke xxiv. 27.“ beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures, the things concerning himself.” Acts xvii. 11. “searching the scriptures daily, whether those things were so. ” xxvi. 22, 23. “saying none other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come.” Rom. iii. 21. “ being witnessed by the law and the prophets.” Pet. i. 10.“who prophesied of the grace which should come unto you.”

WRITTEN IN THE HEARTS OF BELIEVERS. Isai. lix. 21; “as for me, this is my covenant with them, saith Jehovah. My Spirit which is upon thee, and my words which I have put in thy mouht, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed's seed, saith Jehovah, for henceforth and for ever.” Jer. xxxi. 31-33. “behold the days come .... but this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel ; After those days, saith Jehovah, (a declaration particularly worthy of attention, as it specifies in whiat respect the new covenant is more excellent than the old) I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts—” compared with Heb. viii. 10, &c. “this is the covenant ....

I will put my laws into their mind .... and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people.” Joel ü. 28. “it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh

and also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my Spirit.” To these may be

added, from the chapter of Jeremiah quoted above, v. 34.

they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them.” Joel ii. 28. "your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions.” Compare Acts ii. 16-18. For although all real believers have not the gift of prophecy, the Holy Spirit is to them an equivalent and substitute for prophecy, dreams, and visions. 2 Cor. ii. 3. “ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God, not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.” v. 6.“ministers of the new testament, not of the letter, but of the spirit; for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.” James i. 21. “receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.”

BY THE IIoLY SPIRIT, the gift of God, and peculiar to the gospel. John vii. 39. “ the Holy Ghost was not yet given, because that Jesus was not yet glorified.” xiv. 26.“ the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things.” See also Luke xii. 12. Acts i. 8. “ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you.”

See also ü. 1, &c. v. 38. repent, &c. .... and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” Rom. v.5.“ by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.” 1 Cor. ii. 13. in words which the Holy Ghost teacheth.” 2 Cor. xiii. 14. “the communion of the Holy Ghost.” 1 Thess. iv. 8. “who hath also given unto us his Holy Spirit.” See also Rom. viii. 9. I Cor. xii. 3. 1 Pet. i. 12. 1 John iv. 13.

ORDAINED TO CONTINUE EVEN TO THE END OF THE WORLD. 2 Cor. iii. 11. “much more that which remaineth is glorious.” Eph. iv. 13. “ till we all come .... unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.”

A PROMISE OF ETERNAL LIFE. Mark xvi. 15, 16. “ go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel.... he that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.” Rom. i. 16. “the power of God unto salvation.”

TO ALL WHO SHALL BELIEVE. John iji. 15, 16. “whosoever believeth in him," &c. Rom. i. 16, 17. “ to every one that believeth.” 1 John ii. 25. “this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life." See other passages to the same effect above, in the chapter on faith and its objects.

сс

VOL. IV.

BELIEVE.

unto you,

Under the name of believers the penitent are comprehended, inasmuch as in the original annunciation of the gospel repentance and faith are jointly proposed as conditions of salvation. Matt. iii. 1, &c. iv. 17. Mark i. 15. Luke xxiv. 47. Acts ii. 39—41. x. 35. “ he that feareth him and worketh righteousness, is accepted of him.” xix. 3, 4. xx. 21. and elsewhere. A THREAT OF ETERNAL DEATH TO SUCH AS SHALL NOT

Matt. x. 14, 15. “ whosoever shall not receive you nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that city, shake off the dust of your feet : verily I

say

It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom—.” xxi. 37. &c. “he sent unto them his son.. but when the husband. men saw the son, they said .... let us kill him .... they say unto him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men. Mark xvi. 16. “he that believeth not shall be damned.” John iii. 19. “this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light.” Acts iii. 23. every soul which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.” 2 Thess. i. 8, 9. “taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel.” Heb. x. 26, &c. “ if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful looking for of judgement.” By unbelievers, however, those only can be meant to whom Christ has been announced in the gospel; for “ how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard ?! Rom. x. 14.

IN EVERY NATION. Matt. xxiv. 14. “this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world, for a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end come.” Mark xvi. 15. to every creature.” John x. 16.“other sheep I have which are not of this fold.” Acts x. 34, 35. “of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons; but in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted of him.” Rom. x. 18. “ their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world.” dicted, Isai. ii. 2, &c. “ it shall come to pass in the last days," &c. See also Mic. iv. 1. Isai. xix. 18, &c. “ in that day shall five cities in the land of Egypt speak the language of Canaan, &c. xxv. (, &c. “unto all people.” xlii. 4, &c. “ the isles shall wait for his law.” xlv. 22, 23. “look into me, and be

This was pre

« PreviousContinue »