صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني
[ocr errors]

"For as the body is one, and hath many mem-
bers, and all the members of that one body,
being many, are one body: so also is Christ.'
1 Cor. xii. 12. "Ye are the body of Christ,
and members in particular." Cor. xii. 27.
"He is the head of the body, the Church."
Coll. i. 18. "The head over all things to
his Church, which is his body, the fulness of
him that filleth all in all." Eph. i. 22, 23.
" Ye are complete in him." Coll. ii. 10.
"We being many are one body in Christ,
and members one of another." Rom. xii. 5.
" And that he might reconcile both unto God
in one body by the cross." Eph. ii. 16. "And
they two shall be one flesh; this is a great
mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and
the Church." Eph. v. 31, 32. "For both
he that sanctifieth, and they who are sanctifi-
ed, are all of one." Heb. ii. 11. "And the
glory which thou gavest me, I have given
them; that they may be one, even as we are
one, I in them, and thou in me, that they
may be made perfect in one, and that the
world may know that thou hast sent me, and
hast loved them, as thou hast loved me."
John xvii. 22, 23. "And the vessel that he
made of clay was marred in the hand of the
potter, so he made it again another vessel, as
seemed good unto the potter to make it." Jer.
xviii. 4. "She was delivered of a man
child. Who hath heard such a thing? Who
hath seen such things? Shall the earth
be made to bring forth in one day? Shall a
nation be born at once?" Isaiah lxvi. 7, 8.
"In whom also ye are circumcised, with the
circumcision made without hands, in putting
off the body of the sins of the flesh, by the
circumcision of Christ:" Coll. ii. 12. "Bu-
ried with him in baptism." Coll. ii. 11. “I
am crucified with Christ." Gall. ii. 20.
"Wherefore should I fear in the days of evil,
when the iniquity of my heels shall compass
me about?" Psalms xlix. 5. "Who his own
self bare our sins in his own body on the
tree, that we being dead unto sin, should live
unto righteousness, by whose stripes ye were
healed." 1 Peter ii. 21. "Knowing this, that
our old man is crucified with him." Rom. vi.
6. "Ye are dead, and your life is hid with
Christ in God." Coll. iii. 3. "Dead to the
law by the body of Christ." Rom. vii. 4. "If
we be dead with Christ, we believe we shall
als live with him." Rom. vi. 8. "Reckon ye al-
so yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin; but
alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord."
Rom. vi. 11. "Thy dead shall live, my dead

|

*God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, &c. The superlative love of God to his Son, is manifest here: where the valuableness of the gift so infinitely preferable to the re-body shall they arise." Isaiah. xxvi. 9 "Afceiver, is, in order to enhance the grace intelligi- ter two days will he revive us, in the third bly hinted. God's giving his Son, and giving day will he raise us up, and we shall live in himself, is a synonymy in scripture; and confirms his sight." Hosea vi. 2. "Hath begotten us the above proposition; the lesser being always again unto a lively hope, by the resurrection of blessed of the greater. Only considering, that all things were made for hum, and that he is the Jesus Christ from the dead. 1 Pet." i. 3. "Not appointed heir of all things, it will appear in bright- the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but ness, that the honour and glory of the beloved the answer of a good conscience towards Son, and of the Father in him, was first and prin- God, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ." 1 cipal in view, when he was given for the life of Pet. iii. 21. "Now hath he reconciled, in the world; consequently, God's love to the world, the body of his flesh through death." Coll. i. 21, 22. "God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself." 2 Cor. v. 19. "And

was subordinate unto that wherewith he loved his Son; and all his grace and kindness nnto the world, subservient unto his glory.

very explicit, in declaring the Father's love to the Son; but the punishment of this Son, for crimes he stood in no relation to, implies a defect in love: yea, rather a greater love to man, the offender, than to his well-beloved Son, who was the "brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person:" and is withal a manifest contradiction to the divine testimony, which asserts the pre-eminence of Jesus in all things. Withal, to love the impure, is inconsistent with the morality of the divine nature; therefore, where the Father giving his Son is at any time mentioned as an evidence of his love to mankind, it is a proof of his superlative love unto him, and a manifestation of his glory; the descent of his humbled life, and bloody death, being the appointed depth, from which he was to ascend above all heavens, that he might fill all things; and that he might thus inherit the boundless, infinite riches of his Father's love, it was necessary he should suffer what he did; and, that the extendings of the love of God, to man, might be subordinate unto the love he bears to the eternal Son of his bosom, his union to those for whom he suffered the death of the cross appears absolutely necessary.

The union of Christ, and his Church, is a necessary consideration, for the right explication of the scriptures: without which, they would want a key, and a great part of them be altogether unintelligible, and without any just propriety in phrase. To prove which, I need only note a few of the numerous passages which are pregnant with this matter. And here I design not the least intimation of my quoting all the scriptures which positively speak of this truth; nor will I affirm, that those mentioned, are of the whole, the most pertinent to the purpose, but having their light and perfection in Jesus Christ our Lord; and being (as I conceive,) such as treat of His union with the Church, I oft make use of them, as a confirmation of my doctrine, when discoursing on this subject: therefore, occurring the more readily to my memory, I mention them in particular, as "In thy book all my members were written." Psalm. cxxxix. 16. "We are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones." Eph. v. 30. "Whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it, or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.” 1 Cor. xii. 25.

familiarity.

was raised again for our justification." Rom. | shall confine myself to a few only, and those, iv. 25. "And hath raised us up together such as show the matter with more ease and and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ." Eph. ii. 6. "Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ." Eph. ii. 5. "And you being dead in your sins, and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses." Coll. ii. 13. "Who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in Christ: according as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy, and without blame before him." Eph. i. 3, 4. "We shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is." 1 John iii. 2. "Because as he is, so are we in this world." 1 John iv. 17. "Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace which was given us in Christ Jesus, before the world began." 2 Tim. i. 9. "He hath made us accepted in the beloved." Eph. i. 6. Israel shall be saved in the Lord, with an everlasting salvation." Isaiah xlv. 17. "Surely shall one say, in the Lord I have righteous ness and strength: in the Lord shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory." ver. 24, 25. "This is the name wherewith he shall be called, the Lord our Righteousness." Jer. xxxiii. 16. "This is the name wherewith he shall be called the Lord our Righteousness." chap. xxiii. 6. "To them who are sanctified in Christ Jesus." 1 Cor. i. 2. "But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God, is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemp-ful and multiply and replenish the earth, and tion; that according as it is written, he that subdue it," &c., and when the Lord God afglorifieth, let him glory in the Lord." ver. terwards (causing a deep sleep to fall upon 30. "They shall call his name Emanuel, Adam, and taking the rib from his side, of which being interpreted, is God with us." "which he made the woman) brought her unMatt. i. 23. Time would fail me, to men- to him, Adam said, "This is now bone of tion all the scriptures which I apprehend are my bones, and flesh of my flesh, she shall be full of this matter; and are, as I conceive, in- called woman, because she was taken out of capable of any consistent explication, that man." Gen. ii. 21. Thus, her existing in a takes not in the union subsisting between distinct personality, did not hinder her union Christ and his Church. If what I have al- to the man, for when Adam saw her, he said ready said, hath the weight, which it appears this is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my to me to have; then, without union with flesh, as truly so now, as when she only existed Christ all our hopes and expectations by him a rib in my side. The twain were created in one, are groundless, and without the least shadow of the woman in her husband: similar with this, reason: what I have said before, when proving the Church existed in Christ; "According as the inconsistency and unreasonableness of his he hath chosen us in him before the founda-. suffering for sin, without union to the sinner, tion of the world." Eph. i. 4. "Having is of equal force to prove this assertion, as I this purpose and grace, given us in him, am persuaded, that all the ways of God with before the world began." 2 Tim. i. 9. The man are founded in equity. man and woman, under this consideration, had but one name: he called their name Adam. So Christ and his Church, in this

The apostle shows us Adam, as a figure of him who was to come. Rom. v. 14. I would therefore consider wherein this divine grace was shadowed forth in Adam: Moses tells us that when God created Man, male and feinale created he them; and blessed them, and called their nam Adam, in the day when they were created. Gen. v. ii. Thus were the twain created in one: the Woman in her Husband, where they had one name given them: he called their name Adam: It was whilst they were in this condition, that the Lord God breathed into their nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul. It was whilst they were in this capacity, undistinguished in person, that the Lord God commanded man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat, but of the tree of knowledge of good and evil theu shalt not eat of it, for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." Gen. ii. 16, 17. It was whilst the twain thus existed in one, that the Lord God brought all the beasts of the field, and fowls of the air unto Adam, to see what he would call them, that he might at once, give a specimen of his wisdom, in making their names explanatory of their nature; and also by this act be instated in that dominion over the creatures, which the Lord God had given him. Yea, it was whilst the person of Adam was plural, as containing the woman, in himself, that the Lord God said unto them" Be fruit

66

Though I might offer many more reasons showing the necessity of this union, yet at present I shall forbear; judging the hints al-union bears one name, both are called the ready given, sufficient to the purpose. I shall Lord our righteousness.. He, Jer. xxii. 6. therefore hasten to consider its nature, at- and She, chap. xxxiii. 16. We the righte tempting in my measure an explication there- ousness of God in him. 2 Cor. v. 21. The of according to truth. Lord God covenanting with Adam as the

In speaking of the nature of union, as sub-head of the earthly creation, as having the sisting between Christ and his Church, I woman in himself, drew a figure of his cove might have recourse to numerous similitudes nant with Christ, as having the Church exwhich the scriptures afford; and which the isting in him; he as the head engaging for Holy Ghost makes use of to that purpose; but! his members; as the husband for his wife,

262

[ocr errors]

the Church, nor the Church without him at
any time; it was equitable for her curse and
condemnation to fall upon him. Withal,
such was his love unto his spouse, that he
voluntarily put himself in her condition, when
he appeared in the likeness of sinful flesh,
tempted in every point like her, that he might
compassionate her ignorance and wanderings,
and be touched with a feeling of her infirmi
ties. Moreover, the scriptures affirm, that
"by the offence of one judgment came upon
all men unto condemnation." Rom. v. 8.
"For all have sinned and come short of the
glory of God." Rom. iii. 23. It is evi-
dent hence, that in Adam's offence, all of-
fended: which supposes such an union be-
tween Adam and his offspring, that his sin
was their sin; and his ruin their ruin; thus
by his offence, were they made sinners; whilst
they included in him were in passivity, and
he the active consciousness of the whole.
And, that his sin hath reached the ends of
the earth, hath corrupted the whole mass of
mankind, both the scriptures and common
experience, (from the visible effects thereof
daily produced in every man) abundantly de-
clare. If it be granted, that there was such
a union between Adam and his offspring, as
rendered his sin theirs, why should it be
thought thing incredible, that the like
union, subsisting between Jesus and his seed,
renders his condition theirs? especially as the
apostle hath stated the matter thus: "As by
one man's disobedience, many were made sin-
ners, so by the obedience of one, shall many
be made righteous." Rom. v. 19. The scrip
tures here shewing the method of sin in
Adam, and of grace in Christ, takes an occa-
sion to illustrate the latter by the former: in-
timating, that as sin came upon all Adam's
posterity by his single act; before they had
any capacity of sinning, after the similitude
of his transgression; or of personal concur-
rence with him in his iniquity: it must have
been from such a union to him, such an in-
clusion of the whole in him, as rendering his
condition theirs in whatever state he was:
hence, his sin, its curse and fruit, was their's,

theless, neither is the man without the woman,
neither the woman without the man in the
Lord." Cor. xi. 11. From hence we gather,
that Adam was not deceived in his own per-
son; but knowing what Eve had done, and
seeing their ruin inevitable, he voluntarily
put himself into her condition, by receiving
the fruit from her hand, and eating thereof:
such was his love unto his wife. And as
they were not, (though distinct in person)
without each other in the Lord, her transgres-
sion extended unto him; and his union unto
her, made it equitable, for the curse and con-
demnation of her folly, to fall upon him;
and that without the consideration of his con-
sent and compliance with her.

in the transgression." 1 Tim. ii. 14. "Never-before they felt it, knew it, or ever were conscious of existence. Thus by one man's disobedience, many were made sinners. In like manner, Christ's righteousness is upon all his seed: by his single act, before they had any capacity of obeying, after the similitude of his obedience; or of assenting to what he did, or suffered: this manifests such an union to him, such an inclusion of the whole seed in him, as renders his condition theirs, in every state which he passes through; insomuch, that his righteousness, with all the blessings and fruits thereof, is theirs; before they have known it, believed it, or ever were conscious of existence. Thus by the obedience of one are many made righteous.

66

as the King for his subjects, as the root for
his branches, &c. Which covenant was af-
terwards confirmed of God in Christ, when
he sware unto Abram, that in his seed all the
nations of the earth should be blessed. The
promises made unto him, are all yea, and amen,
in him, 2 Cor. i. 20. In him declared, in him
fulfilled upon all his members. Adam having
the Woman in himself, manifesting his wis-
dom in naming the creatures, and withal
his dominion over them, was the wisdom of
his wife; and her honourable exaltation in
point of dominion: so Jesus having the
Church in himself, in all the displays of
his wisdom, is the wisdom of the Church.
1 Cor. i. 30. Likewise his dominion, where
all things are put under his feet, is the ex-
alted grace and glory, which was promised
the Church: Psalm viii. compared with Heb.
ii. 6, 7, 8, 9. Eve when taken from Adam
into a distinct consciousness of existence, was
not less related unto him, than when she was
only a rib in his side, as appears from Adam's
testimony, she is now bone of my bones, and
flesh of my flesh In like manner, the Church
when put forth in the creation of Adam, into
a distinct personality from her head and hus-
band Christ, was not less united unto him,
than when she only existed in him; which
she did, before the earthy man was created,
or ever the worlds were made: as is manifest
from the apostle, who tells us, that he speaks
of Christ and his Church, where he says that
they twain shall be one flesh. Eph. v. 32.
"Members of his body, of his flesh, and of
his bones, (verse 30,) one spirit (Cor. vi. 7.)
with him their own Lord and husband: Af.
ter this manner, (according to my apprehen-
sion) did the beginning of the creation of God
preach Jesus: and the union of Adam and his
spouse represent that of Christ and his Church.
The next thing I shall attempt an expla-
nation of this divine union by, is the fall of
Adam, and of the world in him; for this also
abounds with instruction, with positive and
intelligible figures of the Lamb and his wife.
The apostle tells us, that "Adam was not
deceived, but the woman being deceived was

In like manner, Christ the husband was not deceived but his wife, the Church, being deceived, was in the transgression. Yet as the union was such, that Christ was not without

For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." 1 Cor. xv. 22. (Besides proving the general resurrection) the apostle explains in those words, the matter whereof I am treating. As all died, and 263

were lost in Adam, when he was caught in toils of sin and death, it is evident they were then united in him, then united to him, so that his sin was their sin; his death, their death. As in Adam so in Christ, united in him, in all he did, and suffered; saved in him, crucified with him, risen with him, ascended and seated with him, in heavenly places, &c. Why may not our salvation in Christ from union with him, in his obedience, and death, be judged as reasonable as our condemnation in Adam, from union with him, in his sin and misery? I acknowledge the latter is more familiar, when I would do good evil is present with me: whilst the former is more remote from our senses, and only manifest, when "we look not to the things which are not seen but to the things which are seen." But, if laying sensible things aside, as that which is temporary, we attend wholly to the testimony of the scriptures; having the anointed to guide us, we shall enter into truth, and spiritual things will be manifest. I would now proceed to consider Aaron clothed with the garment of his priesthood, as a figure of Christ, and his Church united. It may not be denied that Aaron was a type of Christ; neither as I conceive, that the garment was a figure of the Church, as attending circumstances sufficiently prove. The different colours and materials, in the garment, denote the many nations, languages, kindreds, and tongues, gathered into the body of the Lamb where Jew and Gentile are reconciled, and both made one. Aaron's garment was so contrived, that he should bear the names of the people upon his shoulders, engraven upon the stones of memorial: his bearing them on his shoulders signifies his carrying their names, persons, and burdens, through the whole of what he officiated in. This answers well to Jesus, who says of his Church, "He bare them, and carried them all the days of old." Isa. lxiii. 9. The names of the people were also engraven upon the breast-plate of judgment, which (Aaron bearing them on his heart) implied his tender concern, and care for their welfare. And, how carefully concerned Jesus is, for the welfare of the people, let his humbled and sorrowful life, his sharp, dolorous sufferings, his shameful and bloody death upon the accursed tree, bear witness. And, that their names were engraven on precious stones, denotes first, the value of then, since the most valuable of gems were appointed to receive the engraving. The everlasting durableness of their names was hinted here also, where such stones were ordained to bear them, whose nature admits not of their being erased. This also leads to Jesus, who says, "Behold I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands." Isa. xlix. 6. Aaron could not be cosecrated until he had the garment on him. Neither could Jesus officiate as the High-Priest and Saviour of the people, without taking upon him the seed of Abraham. Heb. ii. 16. It being necessary that he as an high-priest, should have somewhat to offer. When Aaron

had his garment on him, he was anointed,sented, it is evident that mercy was expected

and not before: it was then the precious ointment was poured on his head, and running down his beard, reached the hem of his garment. Concerning which oil, the Lord saith, "upon man's flesh shall it not be poured, neither shall ye make any other like it, after the composition of it, it is holy: and it shall be holy unto you: whosoever compoundeth any like it, or whosoever putteth any of it upon a stranger, shall even be cut off from his people." Exod. xxx. 32, 33. May it not be determined, that this oil, answers to the unction which is from the holy one; the anointing which guides us into all truth: that "washing of regeneration, and renewing of the holy ghost, which he shed on us abundantly, through Jesus Christ our Saviour." Tit. iii, 5, 6. Jesus when anointed with the holy ghost, and with power, was clothed with the people; they being anointed in him. "Behold how pleasant a thing it is, for brethren to dwell together in unity; it is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard, that went down to the skirt of his garment." Psal. cxxxii. 1, 2. The composition like unto this, forbidden by the Lord, is a compound of such virtues, amiable qualities, gracious dispositions, &c. as are thought to abound in man: and when distinct from the consideration of Union with Christ, and of being anointed in him, men profess themselves anointed with the holy ghost and with power, imputing every change of sentiment, and behaviour, to the immediate influence of the divine spirit: and thus judging of spiritual things, by their own passions, and fleshly reformations, they may be said to pour the oil upon the flesh of man; yea, upon the stranger, contrary to the divine institution.

Aaron was to have his garment on when he ministered in holy things, nor was he to enter into the holy place without it, lest he died; and it was to be unto him for glory and for beauty. A true representation of Jesus, clothed with the people; when by himself he purged our sin, offering himself up unto God, through the eternal spirit; having put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. And, as by union to him, they were crucified with him, so also being risen with him, he entered not into the holy place without them: but like Aaron he entered, wearing the people into the immediate presence of God: and there presenting himself, said, behold I, and the children whom God hath given me. For, when Aaron entered into the holy place, with blood in his hand, (the names of the people sparkling upon his breast-plate, before the face of God,) the blood which he then offered, was respected in justice, as the very blood of the offend ing people; whose names being engraven on the garment were there present, and sparkling, were seen in the blood, by divine justice: there rendering a reason of their expectations from the mercy seat. On this account, was the breast-plate called the breast-plate of judgment; because, by what was there repre

[ocr errors]

in a way of judgment; that the song might be of mercy and judgment. The very same union (with as much more. reality, as the substance hath above the shadow) is there between the sufferings and blood of Jesus, and the people: That blood, and wounded form, with which he entered into the holiest of all, and in which he still appears as a lamb who hath been slain, relates so truly to the seed of Abraham, whom he took upon him as a garment, who were contained in his body as members thereof, of his flesh, and of his bones, as to be in justice, respected as their own blood, shed for their sins: and a sufficient reason rendered, of their faith in, and their hopes from the mercy seat. "Almost all things are by the law purged with blood, and without shedding of blood is no remission." Heb. ix. 22. Int the breast-plate of judgment, Moses put the Urim and Thummim, the Lights and Perfections; whereby a free intercourse was opened, between God and man: This was a true representation of divine wisdom and purity; of God manifest in the flesh, dwelling in the midst of the people, Psal. cxxxii. 14. "This is my rest for ever, here will I dwell, for I have desired it." Thus the Urim and Thummim was a figure of the Godhead, Aaron of Christ, and his garment of the people; these three agreeing to gether in one; as where Jesus speaking to the Father, saith, "I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one, John xvii. 23, at that day ye shall know that I am in the Father, and you in me, and I in you." John xiv. 20. Aaron's garment was to be unto him for glory, and for beauty: so also was the Church to be unto Jesus, "all things were made for him, and he is before all things, and by him all things consist," Coll. i. 16, 17. and "He is the appointed heir of all things." Heb. i. 2. His being before all things, implies, that his honour, and glory, was what the Father had first, and principally in his view, when the decree went forth for the creation of man: whilst all his permissions concerning man, and all his inmediate dealings with him, are rendered, in infinite wisdom, subservient to this view. And indeed, upon this foundation, where he hath made all things for the glory of his Son, and hath put all things in subjection under him, decreeing him the homage and worship of every knee; with a fall acknowledgment of his being Lord: I say, upon this foundation, hath the Father established his own glory, and praise. As appears from Phil. ii. 9. 10, 12. All things were made for him, that as a Son, he might have an inheritance, as a king, he might have a kingdom, as a bridegroom, he might have a bride, and as a head, he might have a body consisting of many members. And, that he might be the Saviour of that body, was man created in a mutable state. "For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope," Rom. viii. 20. That the creature being deceived through sin, and lost in the bondage of corruption, Jesus might

have an opportunity of exerting his grace, his wisdom, power and love, in the redemption of their soul by his blood; and in saving them in himself, with an everlasting salvation. This being the means of his obtaining that everlasting name, glory, honour, immortality, and eternal renown, which had been decreed and promised him, "he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross: wherefore God hath highly exalted him, and given him a name, which is above every name." Phil. ii. 8, 9. God having, in the riches of his wisdom and love, so inseparably connected man's happiness with the glory of his son, that each is included in the other: and here are the people the glory of Christ, as the priestly garment was the glory of Aaron. "For as the girdle cleaveth to the loins of a man, so have I caused to cleave unto me, the whole house of Israel, and the whole house of Judah, that they might be unto me for a people, and for a name, and for a praise, and for a glory," Jer. xiii. 11. "out of Zion the perfection of beauty God hath shined." Psal. 1. 2. And as beauty consists in a perfect body, where none of the members are lacking, nor any thing superfluous: bearing withal a just proportion in every part, so is the Church the beauty of Jesus as the fulness of him who filleth all in all. Eph. i. 33. "My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth, thine eyes did see my substance, yet being imperfect and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them." Psal. cxxxix. 15, 16. Time would fail me to mention all the particulars of this mysterious garment: as those also of sundry other mysteries in the Jewish Church, which I apprehend were instituted as positive figures of that blessed union subsisting between Christ and his Church.

I might go on, to use similitudes drawn from Moses and the prophets, as a farther explication of this matter, tending also to prove and confirm it; for such was the manner of the holy ghost's speaking unto the Fathers, under the Old Testament. But as all who profess Jesus Christ, understand not the scriptures, nor the power of God, it is probable that this method may be objected unto, and the matter treated by many as fables of Allegory. I would therefore consider what the New Testament says thereof, as using greater plainness of speech, and by all the literals acknowledged, as speaking more to the purpose.

Our Saviour teacheth us the grace of union under the similitude of a vine and its branches: I am the the vine, ye are the branches. John xv. 5. Where our Saviour takes on him this appellative, the vine, he is to be understood as speaking of himself according to his human nature, hence he is called the plant of renown, Ezek. xxxiv. 29. The plant which the heavenly Father hath planted: Mat. xv. 13, wherein his husbandry appears. When the the stock or set is first planted, there are no

« السابقةمتابعة »