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VII. Lastly, to do in the name of Jesus may well imply doing with invocation of him : thus we may understand that passage of St. James, where the elders are advised to pray and anoint the sick in the Lord's name ; and thus St. Chrysostom expounds the words. That to do thus is our duty, appears by those frequent injunctions to pray indesinently, to pray always, to abide instantly in prayer ; which do not only import that we should pray often, and continue patiently and earnestly in prayer, but that we should annex it to, or interpose it among, all our actions, undertaking nothing of consideration without it, &c. Reasons given why we are concerned to do this : exhortations thereto and examples in the holy Scriptures. Thus should we do all things in the name of Jesus, on all occasions praying to him, or, which is the same thing, to God in his name; which that we are allowed and exhorted to do, is an invaluable privilege. In so many ways and particular respects we may and ought to perform all we do in the name of Jesus : to which considerations may be subjoined one general duty, implied in all and each of them :
VIII. That our Lord Jesus should be frequently, and in a manner continually present to our minds and thoughts. This is plainly implied in the former duties; for how is it possible we should perform all our actions, or utter all our words, with any sort of regard to him, if we seldom think of him? Such is the activity of our minds, that it is easy enough to do this ; and in respect of other objects we commonly see that it is done; and whatever we vehemently affect, our mind, however otherwise employed, will be thinking of it: instances of the covetous, the voluptuous, and the studious man. Why then may we not as well direct our minds as often towards our Lord, and mix the remembrance of him with all other employments of our thoughts ? For to do so is very requisite and expedient to our good practice. This subject continued to the end.
OF DOING ALL IN THE NAME OF CHRIST.
COLOSSIANS, CHAP. 111.-VERSE 17.
And whatsoever ye do in word, or in deed, do all in the name of
the Lord Jesus.
• WHATSOEVER ye do in word, or deed:' a duty we see the Apostle enjoins us of a large extent, and therefore surely of a great importance; indeed of an universal concernment; such as must go along with, must run through all our words and all our actions. We are therefore much obliged, and much concerned to attend thereto, and to practise it carefully. But first we must understand what it is; the doing whereof depends on understanding the sense of that phrase, (* doing in the name of Jesus,') being somewhat ambiguous, and capable of divers meanings; which both in common use and in holy Scripture we find it to bear, different according to the variety of matters or occasions to which it is applied ; most of which are comprehended, and, as it were, complicated in that general one, according to which we may be said to do that in another person's name, which we do with any kind of reference or regard to him ; such as our relations, or our obligations to that person do require ; and the particular nature of the action doth admit. And according to this acception I conceive it safest and best to interpret Saint Paul's meaning here, supposing it to comprehend all the more special and restrained meanings of this phrase, truly applicable to the present matter ; of which meanings I shall endeavor in order to propound the chief; and,
together, both to unfold and to inculcate the several respective branches of this duty : yet first of all rejecting one or two, which cannot well be applied to this purpose.
To do in another's name, doth sometime denote the assuming another's person, or pretending to be the same with him, the very He. So,' many shall come in my name,' prophesied our Saviour, saying, I am Christ :' to do thus in Jesus's name, is the part of an Antichrist and an impostor. That sense therefore hath nothing to do here.
Again ; to do in another's name, doth often imply doing alterius loco, or vice ; in another's name or stead, as a deputy or substitute; representing the person, or supplying the office of another. So did the prophets come, and speak in God's name;' what they declared or enjoined, being therefore said to be declared and enjoined by God himself: • I spake unto you, rising up early, and speaking,' (viz. by the prophets, whom he sent, and who are said to come and speak in his name.) And thus the Apostles spake in Christ's name : "We are ambassadors for Christ; we pray you in Christ's stead, be reconciled.' Thus also princes govern, and magistrates execute justice in God's name; whence they are styled gods, as being his lieutenants, administering that judgment which belongs originally and principally to him. Now for this sense, neither is it so proper, or convenient here ; it agreeing only to some particular persons, and to some peculiar actions of them ; insomuch that others presuming to act, according to that manner or kind, in Jesus's name, shall thereby become usurpers and deceivers. We (and to us all this precept is directed) shall heinously transgress our duty, doing any thing thus in his name, without his letters of credence; without being specially called or sent, or being duly by him authorised thereto.
These and such like senses the present matter doth not well admit: the rest that suit thereto I shall with some distinction in order represent.
I. To do in another's name sometime doth signify to do it out of affection or honor to another; for another's sake, because we love or esteem him ; év ta óvóuarı being equivalent to éveka toŨ óvópatos, and dià tò őroua. Thus it is said, “Whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name; be.
cause ye are Christ's, (is added by way of interpretation, that is, out of respect to Christ, because of your relation to him,) shall not lose his reward.' Aud thus surely we ought to do every thing in Jesus's name : all our actions ought to proceed from a principle of grateful love and reverence towards our gracious Redeemer. Let all your actions be done in charity,'
· saith the Apostle ; if in charity to our neighbor, then much more in love to him, for whose sake we are especially bound to love our neighbor. On any undertaking, or applying ourselves to action, we should so reflect thereon, as to consider whether that we are going about be apt to please him, and conducible to his honor; if so, remembering what he hath done and suffered for us, (what excellent blessings he hath purchased for us, what exceeding benefits he hath conferred on us,) we should, out of love and respect to him, readily peform it; but if it otherwise appear displeasing or dishonorable to him, we should, from the same principles, carefully decline it. The duty is certain, and the reason thereof evident; for inducement to the practice thereof, observe St. Paul's example; who thus represents bimself in the main employment of his life, acting, “The love of Christ constrains us; judging this, that he died for all, that they who live might not live to themselves, but to him that died and rose for them :' the love of Christ, begot and maintained by a consideration of his great benefits conferred on him, was the spring that set St. Paul on work, that excited and urged him forward to action. Thus doing, we shall do in Jesus's name; but if we act out of love to ourselves, (to promote our own interests, to gratify our own desires, to procure credit or praise to ourselves,) we act only in our own names, and for our own sakes; not in the name, or for the sake of Jesus.
II. To do in another's name implies doing, chiefly, for the interest or advantage of another, on another's behalf or account, as the servants or factors of another. For, when the business is another's, and the fruit or benefit emergent belong to another, he that prosecutes that business may well be, and is commonly, supposed to act in that other's name. Thus our Saviour is in St. John's Gospel expressed to come, to speak, to act in God's name; because he did God's business, (“the work which God gave him to accomplish,') and entirely sought the
glory of God, as he there himself often avouches and professes. And thus, in imitation of him, ought we also to do all things in his name; remembering that we are not our own men, but the servants of Jesus,' (servants to him not only by nature, as to our Maker and Preserver, but by purchase, as to our Redeemer, who bought us with the greatest price; and by compact also, we having freely undertaken his service, and expecting wages from him,) that we have therefore no business or employment properly our own, but that all our business is (or should be) to serve him, and promote his glory ; · Whether we eat or drink, or whatever we do, we should do all to the glory of our Lord.' Whatever, I say, we do, we therefore should perform it with this formal reference, as it were, toward Jesus, as his servants, from conscience of the duty we owe to him ; with intention therein to serve him ; in expectation of reward only from him. So doth St. Paul (in prosecution of this same precept) beneath in this chapter enjoin us, that whatever we
“ do, we perform it heartily, as to the Lord, and not to men, knowing (or considering) that from the Lord we shall receive the recompense of the inheritance ; for that we serve the Lord Christ.' In like manner otherwhere he teaches us to do what we do, not as pleasers of men, (not on any inferior accounts,) but as servants of Christ, knowing and considering that we have a Master in heaven.' But,
III. Doing in another's name imports frequently doing by the appointment and command, or by the commission and authority of another. 'Εν ποία δυνάμει, και εν ποία ονόματι; • By what power and in what name have ye done these things ? say the high priests to the Apostles; that is, who did appoint or authorise you to do this? Their answer was ready: • In the name of Jesus,' who had sent, commissionated, and commanded them to preach and propagate that doctrine. And thus we are also bound to do all things in the name of Jesus, regulating all our actions by his law; conforming our whole lives to his will ; acting not only out of good principles, (principles of love and conscience,) but according to right rules; the rules of his word and example, which he hath declared and prescribed to us : for what is done beside his warrant and will cannot be rightly esteemed done in his name ; will not as so be avowed or ac