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it carries an everlasting sense ; it relates to spiritual blessings in heavenly places. Eph. i. 3. In the Lord's supper we shew forth not only his dying, but his coming again. We eat and drink at his table in view of the new wine in our father's kingdom. And so it is here. Circumcision was the token of an everlasting covenant. The sign itself was to be abolished at a certain period, and so shall baptism at the consummation of all things. Gen. xvii. 7. They are both of them but patterns of things in the heavens ; but the covenant that each of them related to is everlasting in its form, its security, its benefits, and its effects.
This is the plain sense of a certain text, if you will take it unpuzzled with criticism, and the folly of those, whose bellies being filled with the east-wind, do reason with unprofitable talk. What shall they do who are baptized for the dead? if the dead rise not at all, why are they then baptized for the dead? 1 Cor. xv. 29. This passage has put many learned persons, upon striving about words, and, I think, to no profit. Sometimes a scripture has the same fate with interpreters, that Job has with his comforters, wbo came with a good meaning, but did not act very much to the purpose. The apostle quite through that chapter, is pro-, ving the resurrection of the dead; that Christ's has been and ours shall be. He argues it from the ministry of the word, that otherwise our preaching is vain, and your faith is vain ; and then he does it from another ordinance, people are baptized for the dead, that is, with a
professed subjection to Christ who is raised from the dead, and with a declared hope that we shall be so. Now, as he saith, if there be no resurrection from the dead, why was this ever made the signification and import of baptism? In this solemnity as we look to a Saviour, so we look for him. We wash these vile bodies, and he will change them by a power that can subdue all things to himself. Phil. iii. 21.
9. We are baptized into the name of our God, upon a full satisfaction, that he is able to do all this for which we are waiting. Our privi
leges in him and by him, are pardon, accep.. tance, conformity to him, and felicity with him.
And as these are our desire, so they are our earnest expectation and confidence that in nothing we shall be ashamed. Phil. i. 20. To depend for pardon upon one that cannot give it, or for holiness upon him who cannot work it, or for heaven upon a hand that cannot bring us to it, would make us ashamed of our hope. How dreadful would it be for these expectations to raise us up to heaven, and then upon a disappointment, to go down, both sneaking and howling into heil.
But, as we are baptized upon his command who has all power both in heaven and earth, his power upon earth can preserve us from falling, and his power in heaven will present us faultless with exceeding joy. Jude 22. We durst not have taken his name upon us, if he was not our sovereign. We durst not have done it with confidence, if he was not omnipotent. But he has a mighty arm; strong is his hand, and high is his right hand. Who is a strong Lord like unto him, or to his faithfulness round about him? His faithfulness will declare his strength; his strength will secure his faithfulness. He shows a greater majesty in a covenant than he does in a creation. Psal. lxxxix. 6, 7.
What do you mean by being baptized? It is declaring plainly to the world, that you seek a city, which is an heavenly, whose builder and maker is God. Heb. xi. 16. For in this ordinance God is not ashamed to be called your God; and from thence you may conclude that he has provided for you a city. Behold what manner of love he has bestowed upon you, that you should be called the children of God! He has called you so by appointing baptism. You call yourselves so by observing it. By this it appears that you are, the sons of God, 1 John iii. 1, 2. and though it does not fully appear what you shall be, yet here is a happy general conclusion, that we shall be like him, by seeing him as he is.
10. Being baptized into the name of God, expresses the common interest, that all believers have in him. It was never designed to be the badge of a party, but of a christianity that is now diffused among all nations; and it belongs to all that in every place call upon the name of the Lord Jesus, both theirs and ours. The distinction of kingdoms, languages and sexes, (and I think of particular opinions too) ought to be swallowed up in it.
As many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female, for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. Gal. iii. 27, 28. You see the apostle makes the name of baptist to be of the same extent with that of believer; not that believers should think themselves divided by it, but united in it. As the body is one, and has many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body; so also is Christ. For by one spirit we are all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free, and have been made all to drink into one spirit. 1 Cor. xii. 12, 13.
Hence it appears, that what is only external is a very little matter. We are said to drink into one spirit, to let us see, that spiritual baptism is something within us. He has said that we have but one Lord, one faith, and one baptism; and therefore, let us not charge some persons with having no baptism, and others with having two. I am sure a difference of opinion, upon this head, never so much as biassed my friendship, and I hope it never will be in my practice a term of communion. Christ has made it an ordinance so wide as to comprehend us all; and I shall not inclose what he has left open.
By being baptized, you declare yourselves christians, and in this are distinguished from none, but those who do not own Christ Jesus to be head over all things to his Church; or, which comes to the same thing, do not be
lieve him to have the fulness of him, that fills all in all. Eph. i. 21, 22.
And thus have I considered what this expression, to be baptized into a'name, imports in a more general way. What that name in particular is, you see by the perpetual form of the ordinance. It is that of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Glost, which brings the first article of our religion into the first act of our profession.
Baptism completed by Christ, and an argu
ment of his omnipotence. He gave the form of it, which expresses the first article of religion, a trinity of persons in an unity of Godhead. We are baptized in no other name than that of God. The first command unrepealed. None but God can give the blessings of the ordinance, pardon and purity, which are ascribed to the Son and Spirit. Baptism is into the name of one God. This was very little known among the heathen. The charge of tritheism false and
impudent. It is very evident, that to be baptized into the name of any one is the greatest homage we can pay to such a being. It shows that all our devotion is to him, and all our springy are in him. Psal. Ixxxvii. 7. And therefore,
11. Let us inquire what that name is, into