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be ashamed or confounded.” All other foundations are but
foundations of sand, and the house built upon the sand will | fall, and great will the fall thereof be ; “ for other foundation
can no inan lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ." Adam, in innocency, did indeed stand upon another foundation ; and, if he had continued there, he would have bad ob. tained life and happiness, by way of pactional clebt; but there is no other foundation for a lost finner to build upon, but the foundation Christ.
Sthly, He is set up as the end of the law for righteousness to every finner that believes in him. He has, by his obedience uinto death, and the perfect holiness of his nature, brought in an everlasting righteousness, for the justification of the ungode iy finner that believes in him: This is his name, whereby he is called, The Lord our Righteousness, Jer. xxiii. 6.. and “ what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God, sending his own Son, in the likeness of finful fleih, for fin condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us." This is that white raiment Christ counsels us to buy of him, that the shame of our naked. ness may not appear. And see how he fets up, or sets out, this righteousness, even to the stout-hearted, and far from righteousness, ll. xlvi. at the close, “ I bring near my righ. teousness; it fhall not be far off, and my salvation shall not tarry," &c. And the language of the soul, when it puts on that robe, is that which you find, If. xlv. at the close, “Surely, Thail one say, in the Lord have I righteousness and strength: In the Lord thall all the feed of Israel be justified, and thall
Tothly, He is set up as a storehouse, out of which the bankrupted and beggared finners of Adam's family may be fupplied with every thing they need : “ For it hath pleased the Father, that in him should all fulness dwell, and that, out of his fulness, all we may receive grace for grace.” We, who are bis ministers and am balladors, are authorised to cart open the gates of this storehouse, and give full liberty upto all wretched, miserable, blind, poor, and naked finners, to come and take what they want, without money and without price, 18. lv. 1. Rev. xxi. 17.
utkly, To fhut up this head at present, he is set up as the falvation of God to all loft finners. Chrift, in scripture, is frequently called “The Salvation of God.” Jacob, Gen. xlix.
19. when he is blessing his children, males a pause, cafting · his eyes usen the Shilch that was to spring out of the iribe of Judah, ard cries, “ I liave waited for thy falvacion, O Lord."
Old Simeon gets Christ, when a babe, in his arms, Luke ii. 29. “ Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word; for mine eyes have seen thy salvation.” 1 him, he who is our God, is the God of salvation. He has wrought, and still works, manifold salvation in the midf: of the earth ; salvation from fin, Matth. i. 22.; salvation from the curse of the broken law, Gal. iii. 13.; falvation from Satan, for he through death destroyed him, Heb. ii. 14 ; falvation from the sting of death, I Cor. xv. 55.; salvation froin hell, and the wrath that is to come, 2 Thess. i. 10. So that, whenever a linner looks unto him by the eye of faith, he may fing that song, If. xi. 1. 2. “ I will praise thee; for though thou wast angry with me, yet thine anger is turned away, and thou comfortedit me. Behold God is my falvation : I will trust, and not be afraid ; for the Lord JEHOVAH is my trength and my song, he also is become my salvation."
Thus you see some of these ends and uses for which Christ was set up from everlasting.
Many more particulars might be insisted on, if time and strength would allow. I only name some of them.
1. He was set up as our Redeemer, to pay the ransom jule tice demanded, that we might not go down to the pit.
2. As a Surety, to pay the debts of bankrupts; therefore called, Heb. vii. 22. “The Surety of a better testament.”
3. As a Physician, to heal us of all our diseases. With him is the balm in Gilead, and he is the Physician there. .
4. As a Shepherd, to gather his Father's flocks unto his befold : Il. xl. 11. “He shall feed his flock like a Shepherd.”
5. As a wonderful Counsellor, to give advice in all doubtful cases, 1f. ix. 6. So David, Pfal. xvi. 7. “ I will bless the Lord, who hath given me counsel.”
6. As au everlasting Father, in whom the fatherless orphars of Adam's family findeth mercy, If.ix. Hof. xvi.
7. As the mighty God, that was able to encounter princi. palities and powers, and to spoil them on his cross, ll.ix.
8. As the Prince of peace, the King of Salem, “ I create the fruit of the lips, peace, peace, to himn that is afar off,"
9. As the Amen, the faithful and true Witness, by whose declaration all controversies are to be decided betwcen God and man, and man and man. .
10. As a Guide and Leader, to guide the blind by a way they know not, by his word and Spirit. 11. As a Captain of salvation, or Commander, under whose banner we are to fight our way to heaven, through the armies of hell and earth.
12. As a Bridegroom, with whom we are called to make a match, If. liv. 6. Hof. ii. 19. 20.
IV. The fourth thing in the method was, to inquire into the grounds and reasons why Christ was set up from everlafiing, for the great work and service of redemption.
Answ. 1. Here we must have recourse unto adorable So. vereignty, because it was his will and pleasure, and say, as Christ said in another case, Matth. xi. 26. “ Even so, O Father, for so it seemed good in thy sight.”
Answ. 2. Because of the good-will he did bear to man upon earth. Hence this was one of the notes of the song of angels at his birth, Luke ii. 14. “ Glory to God in the highest; peace, good-will to man. . ,
Answ. 3. Because of his ability for the undertaking: Psal. lxxxix. 19. “ I have (says the Lord) laid help upon one that is mighty." He is the man of God's right hand, and the arm of JEHOVAH was in him and with him.
Answ. 4. Because he voluntarily offered himself unto the work and service, as you heard in the first head of the docela trine, Psal. xl. 8. he had a heart to the work : “ Thy law (says he) is within my heart,” If. 1. 5.
Answ. 5. Because of his undaunted courage to encounter all difficulties and opposition in the way; hence called “ The Lion of the tribe of Judah." See his courageous behaviour, II.1.7-9.''
Answ. 6. Because from everlasting God foresaw what a revenue of glory would accrue to the crown of heaven, through a his mediation, even a greater glory than by all his other works of creation and providence. Hence the first note of the Tong of angels, Luke ii. 14. is “ Glory to God in the highett,” q. d. All the other works of God praise him; but now we see the highest revenue of glory to be levied out of the strange work of God, in uniting the divine and human natures in that Child that is born in the city of David. And I conceive it was with an eye to this, 11. vi. when they are viewing the personal glory of or Redeemer, cry out, “ The whole earth is full of his glory.” As if they had said, 'It is no furprise to us a' gels to fee bis glory shining in the heavens; but to see the glory of the only begotten of the Father made flel, and dwelling among men upon earth, a theatre of fin, rebellion, and misery; this is what indeed strikes us with altonishment and admiration. I might here let you see how all
. the divine perfections are glorified to the full in the work of redemption, for which Christ was set up from everlasting. But I haste to the
V. And last thing proposed, which was the application of the doctrine.
Use first shall be of Information, in the particulars fol
Is it so that Christ was set up from all eternity, for the great work and service of man's redemption ?
1. then, See hence the antiquity and eternity of the love of God towards loft finners of Adam's family. His love muft be from everlifting, because Chriit was set up from everlasting, as a help meet for us, Psal. lxxxix. 19. “I have laid help upon one that is mighty.” I have done it in eternity, before the world was. Hence the eternity of his love is aflerted, Jer. xxxi. 3. “I have loved tee with an everlasting love." Run back the love of God, we shall never find the beginning of it.
2. See hence, not only the eternity, but the activity of the love of God. It was not an indolent, but au operative love; it was such a love as fet his power, his wisdom, and other perfections a-work; and all the persons of the glorious Trini. ty a.work, to accomplish his purpose of grace and love towards finners of mankind. So that if the question be put,
What was God doing from all eternity before he created the world? Here you have an answer : The Father and the Son poffefred one another, “ In the begining of his way, before his works of old :” and Infinite Wisdom, inspired by infinite and amasing love, set him a-work to lay the plan of our salvation, through his beloved Son: as you lee here, I was set up from everlasting.
3. See hence that Christ is the great Secretary of heaven, who is intimately acquainted with the mind of God, which is unsearchable by any other but himself. For you see here, that he brings forth things that were done in eternity, before ever man or angels had any being, I was set up from everlasting. There is a word to this purpose, Matth. xi, 27. “ All things are delivered unto me of my Father : and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father ; neither knoweih any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him." Sirs, would you know the secrets of heaven, the mysteries of the kingdoin, that were hid in God from eternity? Then come to Christ: hear ye him, and he will tell you things, that none in heaven or earth can tell you, but himself: “ No man
hath seen God at any time ; the only begotten Son, who is in the bofom of the Father, he hath declared him."
4. See hence the stability and perpetuity of the covenant of grace. Why, Christ was set up from everlasting, as the newcovenant Head. The covenant was transacted with him, as second Adam, from everlasting, Pfal. Ixxxix. 3. And the covenant derives its ftability from the covenant Head, Pfal. Lxxxix. 28. “My covenant thall stand fast with him :" and this is the very thing that makes it a sure covenant unto us. Hence, Psal. lxxxix. 33. 34. “I will visit their transgreslion with the rod; nevertheless, iny loving-kindness will I not take from him :" and therefore, “ my covenant will I not break (viz, with them), nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips,”? Il. liv, 9. 10. “ For this is as the waters of Noah unto me: for as I have sworn that the waters of Noah should no more go over the earth ; so have I sworn that I would not be wroth with thee, nor rebuke thee. For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed, but my kindness ihall not depart from three, &c...
5. See the great ground and reason of the stability and per. petuity of the church. Why, it is founded upon the everlasting mountains of the divine d-crees and perfections, whereby Christ was set up from everlasting, as the basis and foundation upon which the stands. This is the rock upon which he builds his church, and the gates of hell shall never prevail against her. Storms and tempests are raised against her ; Tempefts of persecution ; tempests of error ; tempefts of divifions and delusions. But what do they all come unto in the issue? Why, they are just like the billows of the sea breaking upon a rock daihing themselves into foam, while the rock sands immoveable.
6. Was Christ set up from everlasting? Then see hence a good reason why all bands should be at work to exalt him, and set him on high. Why, in so doing, we join with a whole Trinity; whole plot was to set him up from everlasting. Though he be reječied by the generality of builders through England, and Ireland, and in Scotland also, there is no matter of that: God, who fet l. n up from everlasting, has made him the Head Stone of the corner; and therefore, however weak and impotent they be, that are bearing testimony for him and his cause, yet they shall prevail. Christ and his caule will ay be uppermoit at the end of the day; for be that set him up froin everlasting, will have him set up, and his cause maintained through all periods of time, in spite of all the powers of hell and earth.