"HE SHALL save his people from their sins." For this he was born of the virgin Mary and came into the world; for his people are born of woman and are in the world. Thus they are partakers of flesh and blood; for God "hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth." To this one whole family in the embodiment of the first man God said, "For in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." Man ate, and died. Death passed upon all in him. "By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned," Rom, V. 12. All the family of man sinned in and by the one first man, who was the earthly head and natural life of all. This life of all the children of men Adam was, and they inherit and receive it from him. This is brought forth and developed in the natural birth of the flesh. From this sinful life is our corrupted fleshly nature, mind and soul, and our mortal body. "By man came death *** In Adam all die." 1 Cor. XV. 21, 22. The entire Adamic tree was corrupted in its root, and hence a fatal and withering blight rests upon it, even unto the righteous curse, as upon the barren fig tree, and the sentence went forth to "Cut it down." Thus all the children and members of the first man Adam were righteously and hopelessly condemned in and with him, by the just sentence of the holy command of the beneficent Creator, to whom all men are righteously accountable forever. Our individual sins do but manifest this original guilt and condemnation unto death and separation from communion and favor with God.
All the foreknown, chosen and predestinated people of the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, whose names were written in heaven and are in the book of life, were held in this righteous condemnation, alike with all the human race, whose life was in Adam. So the righteous obligations and claims of the condemning law stood in force against them all, notwithstanding their guilty inability to fulfill and satisfy it.
Now, therefore, how infinite the mercy to the lost children of men, that God's "holy child Jesus" was not a member or branch in the Adamic tree; for then all must have been condemned and lost forever. For "the man Christ Jesus," who is the one and only Mediator between God and men, is not a son of Adam, although he is the son of Eve, the seed of the woman that should bruise the serpent's head, and destroy the devil and his works. For, as we have before seen, God is the holy Father of our only Lord Jesus Christ, while the favored Jewish virgin, the daughter of David and Abraham and Eve, who is the mother of all living men, was his blessed mother. And this was the greatest and divinest honor that was ever bestowed upon Eve and her daughters; and thus also through Eve and Mary came this infinite mercy and grace upon Adam and his guilty sons. So Eve was a wonderful type of the church, the bride of the Son of God, that Christ loved, and gave himself for it. Adam loved Eve unto death, and died with her; but death was their sad separation forever. Not so, however, with the second man Adam; for after he had died for his sinning bride, whom he had betrothed unto himself forever in bonds of deathless love and saving mercy, he had power to arise from the dead and give her life for evermore, and to adorn her with the new wedding robe of purest linen, spotless and white, the righteousness of saints. And this because the Omnipotent One was his Father, and gave him the commandment to lay down his life, and to take it up again. Jesus therefore said, "I and my Father are one." One in Divine Essence and holiness and power. Yet it is just as true of him as a man, the child that was born unto us, that the Father's Son and his brethren are one. Of them he said in prayer for them to his holy Father, "Thine they were, and thou gayest them me." The gift was mutual, so that they were Christ's and he was theirs. The church as the bride says, "My Beloved is mine, and I am his." In his prayer for them, the holy Son further says, "That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me. and I in thee, that they also may be one in us." John XVII. This oneness asked for by our Intercessor is in life and holiness,, and it secures their complete separation from all their sins, from weakness and suffering, mortality and death, and that they shall be with Christ where he is, and forever love and worship God in the beauties of holiness.
This indeed is the perfection and fullness of the glorious priesthood of God's holy Son Jesus. Of this he spoke when he said, "For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day." John VI. 38-40. This is overflowing with eternal truth and heavenly assurance, showing that the righteous and almighty Son shall successfully and entirely accomplish his holy Father's will, in the full salvation and eternal redemption of all the countless millions of his people, his Father's gift to him. This holy testimony of him who came down from heaven is so blessed, let us a little dwell on it, that through its comfort we may have hope. First, his exalted and holy origin, which is from God out of heaven; therefore clothed with the eternal excellence, dignity and power of God himself. Second, he came to do his righteous Father's will, not his own as a man. How this should instruct and correct us, and also reprove and humble us. For it is the most exalted man that ever dwelt upon earth, possessor of heaven and earth, who "thought it not robbery to be equal with God," that abnegates or renounces his personal will, and is wholly swallowed up in doing and suffering the will of the Father who sent him; for, as we have seen in these pages, that will appointed him to endure infinite suffering and sorrow of soul unto death, and the cruelest tortures at the hands of the most wicked men, as a harmless lamb in the midst of wolves; yet the loving and obedient Son faltered not, nor complained, but with meek submission said, "O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done." This is the true spirit, and its divine lesson is, no man should presume to reply against God; nor dispute his sovereign right and holy will. Third, the Father had given him a countless people, whom no man could number, yet definitely known to the Father and Son; these were in the world, away from God and Christ, as lost sheep, and they must all die, having sinned; but Jesus came into the world to bring all this people to his holy Father, to serve him in holiness and righteousness before him for ever. Fourth, "the last day" is repeatedly named by our Divine Prophet when he shall raise up again his people. Fifth, he then identifies them personally, as every one that seeth the Son, and believeth on him. Thus the Savior himself very fully reveals the Father's will, and specifies the holy purpose and righteous work which he came down from heaven to do. It was to purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works, to the everlasting praise and glory of the Father, in the glorious exaltation of Christ. In his intercession with the Father for them the holy Mediator says, "Sanctify them through thy truth; thy word is truth. * * And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth." John XVII. They shall surely be sanctified unto the saving knowledge of the Father and Son through the truth. And the Son of God is himself the full revelation and embodiment of the Truth. He therefore said to the apostle Thomas, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." John XIV. 6. To come unto the Father by the Son, then, is to be blessedly brought into the way, the truth, and the life; and this is nothing less than to be rescued from the broad way of destruction, from falsehood, though it be religious, and from the monster death. Now this holy Prophet, who reveals his Father's will, and does it, also says, "All that the Father giveth me shall come to me: and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out." John VI. 37. He thus makes it absolutely sure to all his people, the children that God gave him, that they shall come unto the Father, and be accepted with him, but not in their sins and unrighteousness; for he who is the way of holiness, and the truth that makes them free from sin, and the life that sanctifies and saves them, will himself bring them. His holy obligation to his Father behooved him to thus make them nigh unto God, and he does so by his sin-cleansing blood, and his saving life, which he gives them. God gave his Son this power, the power of an endless life of holiness.
The holy Son of God fulfills this work of sanctifying his Father's people through the truth unto holiness by the power and perfection of his eternal priesthood, in union with his prophetic and kingly power, as we have beheld him. In thus giving life to the dead, sight and hearing and understanding to the blind and deaf and ignorant, and salvation from the dominion or reigning power of sin, that his people whom he thus sanctifies may come and offer unto God an offering in righteousness, the Holy Spirit of love and truth and peace is his minister, to quicken them from death in sin unto life in righteousness, and to comfort them. Therefore, said Jesus to one who trusted in the covenant of works, "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again." John III. 5, 7. For God is a Spirit, and his kingdom is spiritual; therefore his worship is spiritual, and neither fleshly nor legal, as the ruler of the Jews had thought. So, as the Prophet and Teacher come from God, Jesus cut him off from this fleshly dependence, which was the delusive error of the legal worshippers, as it is till this day. "God is a Spirit; and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth." John IV. 24. This unerring teaching of our Divine Prophet, who prevailed to open the sealed book and to reveal what was written therein, cuts off all legal and carnal or fleshly offerings and works of men from the true and acceptable worship of God, as unclean and unholy. So God had not respect to Cain and his offering as worship, because it was neither in spirit nor in truth, and was not in faith, which is a fruit of the Spirit and the gift of God. The only way to be made free from this legal dependence and carnal worship is by the circumcision of the Spirit in the heart, and this is nothing less than death to the covenant of works, and being raised up in newness of life, to serve God in newness of spirit. It is to be born of the Spirit. "For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me" Rom. VII. 12. "For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God." Gal. II. 19. This is as true in every one who lives unto God as it was in Paul, and the power of this solemn truth is experienced in the heart. No one, therefore, lives unto God and worships him truly, until he first dies unto the law, and to legal trust and hope. For God will not accept any legal service. Paul very clearly states this fact when he says to his brethren in Christ: "For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh." Phil. III. 3. Of this true and spiritual work of circumcision in Christ, Paul says, "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: buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead. And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses." Col. II. 11-13. This holy operation of circumcision or cutting off the sins of the flesh of the true Israel was accomplished by the death of Christ unto sin in the flesh, as Paul here states, showing that Christ was cut off out of the land of the living for the transgressions of his people in their sinful flesh, as their passover who was sacrificed for them; that, having thus made reconciliation for their sins, God raised him from the dead for their justification unto righteousness, as shown in the ordinance of baptism, and therefore he quickens them together with Christ in his risen and righteous life; "that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit." As thus judged in the flesh, every one so quickened by virtue of Christ's death unto sin, and resurrection unto life, is spiritually baptized with his baptism of soul-sorrow and suffering for sin unto death. This is the true circumcision, made without hands, for it is by the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, and it brings all who are his down into his death unto sin in the flesh and under the law, as also unto it, then quickens us together with him, and raises us up together in the power and holiness of his endless life, to live with him in his Father's kingdom.
Now it is evident, from the divine testimonies given, that this saving and sanctifying work of righteousness in the people given to Christ, in bringing them from death unto life, and separating them from their sins and the law, is an experience in the heart and life of trouble, mourning and weeping, of supplication and crying unto God for mercy and pardon, and of sinking down into the anguish of fearful despair and the bitter sorrow of death. It is truly being brought into the fellowship of the Man of sorrows, our anointed High Priest, in the days of his flesh, that we may die indeed unto sin in the flesh, as did our suffering Christ, and that we might know the power of his resurrection by the Spirit of holiness, and be the sons of God in the life of his first-born Son from the dead. In no other way could our dying Redeemer enter into his glory, in his Father's kingdom of righteousness and life and peace. Therefore, in words of sympathetic reproof to his lamenting disciples, the newly risen Man of the cross said, "Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to eater into his glory?" Luke XXIV. 26. He was reconciled to his loving and holy Father's will, though that will was that he should be betrayed into the hands of sinners and tortured unto death; and he would likewise have his sorrowing disciples reconciled and comforted, knowing that his Father's will and way was best. So in no other way can we come into the life and holiness and glory of the risen Christ, only through his sufferings and death. We must follow him in his steps. Such is the meaning of circumcision. It is to die unto sin, that we may live unto righteousness. It is to become dead to the law of works by the body of Christ, who was smitten by the sword of the Law, and to have no confidence in the flesh, that we may rejoice in our Savior alone, and worship God in the spirit.
The fleshly mind will murmur and fight against this way of salvation, as too self-sacrificing and hard, and will cleave to the old covenant of conditional service and reward, as better suited to the dignity of man and his idea of his free moral agency. Nevertheless, this way unto God by the circumcision of Christ, which is to be crucified through the weakness of the flesh, is the only way of separation from sin and confidence in the flesh, and of preparation and consecration unto the true worship of God. Paul had experienced the power of this only way of salvation and life when he said, "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me." Gal. II. 20. Thus was the devoted apostle of the gospel of Christ, through the sufferings of his crucified Lord, into the fellowship of which he was brought through the ministering Spirit, cut off from the law of works, in which he had trusted, and from the dominion of sin and death, "separated unto the gospel of God," "passed from death unto life," and now the glorified Christ lived in him, and the new life of the servant of God he lived by the faith of the Son of God. This is likewise true in all who have the faith of Jesus. Now, then, Paul says, "We are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus." Having sowed in tears, and sorrowed with him unto death, our rejoicing is now in him, for he has raised us up into loving acceptance with God through the Spirit, and we worship him in spirit and in truth.
"Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus." Rev. XIV. 12. This is the experience of "being born again," and these are the fruits or the birth of the Spirit, with its sorrowing in the flesh, and rejoicing in Christ. In this way, but in no other, can any man see and enter into the kingdom of God. Christ, who lives and reigns upon his Father's throne within the veil, entered into his kingdom through the door of death. So all who have the mind that was in him, and his reconciled spirit, will meekly take the cup of sorrow and suffering in the flesh, as he did, because it is the Father's will, that they may be partakers of his grace and glory. Therefore, "he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God." Rom. 11. 29. Of this way of salvation unto life and holiness, Paul again says, "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior; that being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life." Tit. III. 5-7.
Now, as our apostle here states the fundamental principle and power of salvation and justification, denying that it is by our works as Christians, and affirming that it is according to the mercy of God and grace of Christ, and wrought in us by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Spirit; so he elsewhere abundantly establishes this doctrinal and experimental truth of salvation by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ - abundant, reigning and sovereign grace. For he says, "But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: that as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord." Rom. V. 20, 21. And this being true of grace, he went on to exhort and encourage his brethren in Christ, saying, "yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God. For sin shall not have dominion over you; for ye are not under the law, but under grace." Rom. VI. 14. Grace, then, shall have the dominion over her favored subjects, the people of the covenant of grace and of Christ's priesthood; for he hath redeemed them from the law and its curse, and washed them by his blood from their sins; so to them sin has lost its strength, and the law has no power to accuse or curse them. Such is the potency and success of reigning grace. Paul declares a most blessed and heavenly truth, to the praise of grace, when he says that it much more abounds where sin abounded; and so much more that, although the reign of sin was unto death, yet the reign of grace as a heavenly princess is so much mightier that she rescues her subjects from sin and death, and then reigns in them and over them unto life eternal. But, most glorious of all, grace reigns through righteousness, because she reigns by the power of the King of saints, the righteous and ever-living High Priest of all the blessed people of grace. This is the praise and glory of sanctifying and saving grace, and its excellency and sufficiency cannot be over-estimated; for since grace much more abounds than destructive sin, is mightier than the monster death, and so triumphantly reigns that her saved people love righteousness, and hate sin and iniquity, why should any one, who needs and desires salvation from sin and unto righteousness, seek any other way of salvation than by grace? It is a very low and mistaken estimate of the grace of our holy Redeemer, if any one supposes that there is any lack, deficiency or weakness in his reigning and saving grace. In the sore trials of Paul, who plead with his Lord to make his burden lighter, his sympathising High Priest gave him this sustaining assurance: "My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness." Thus fortified, Paul adds: "Most gladly therefore will. I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me." 2 Cor. XII. 9. How sad the mistake, therefore, when any one will turn from grace to his own works and weakness.
"And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God." 1 Cor. VI. 11. This s the necessary preparation and qualification for the holy worship of God in his sanctuary, and all who are thus consecrated are in his kingdom of grace. Christ is their High Priest unto God, and they are of his priestly brotherhood and house. God has accepted them in his beloved Son. To them Paul says, "But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. *** For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. *** Ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God." Rom. VIII. We have been born of our Father in heaven, who is a Spirit, and have been made partakers of his holiness in his holy Son, in whom we are thus in brotherhood. All who are thus made partakers of the divine nature, as redeemed, washed, sanctified, and justified, are of the spiritual and divine priesthood and kingdom of God's holy Son. These are the true worshippers of the Father, who is holy, and whose service is holy. "This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord; and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord." Isa. LIV. "Of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: that, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord," I Cor. I. 30, 31. Now, then, all this salvation and consecration unto the worship and service of the God of all grace is of him, through the one Mediator, and ministered by the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus.
To this family of our blessed God, and brotherhood of his holy Son Jesus, the apostle Peter writes and says, "But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy. Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." 1 Pet. II. 9-11. This testimony of the inspired apostle shows that, although the people of God are chosen of him unto salvation, and made the royal or kingly priesthood of Christ, and as such they are an holy nation, yet they are for the present time in the flesh, or connected with it, in which there dwelleth no good thing, and that it is not with the desire or will of their fleshly mind they worship and serve God, but they are to abstain from these, as things at war with their soul-pantings after God and his holiness. This revelation of the truth also shows that this holy nation and peculiar people of the living God are strangers and pilgrims in this world, and that the sin-blighted earth and mortal flesh is not their inheritance and home, but they are here only for a time, which God hath put in his own power, as said his Son before he in person left the world to go unto the Father. Therefore, as their interceding High Priest unto God, Christ said to him, "I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. Sanctify them through thy truth; thy word is truth. As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world." John XVII. 14-18. Here Christ evidently speaks of his people in their spiritual and holy relation to him, not only as his people in the new and better testament, as redeemed by his blood, but especially as born from above of his Father and God. lt was as his brethren in the Spirit and as his disciples, therefore, that he sent them into the world, to be the witnesses of his resurrection from the dead, and servants and ministers in his new kingdom. He was then to enter into that within the veil, as the atoning High Priest of his people, and their Forerunner into the glory of his Father's house, but they were to remain in the sanctuary without as his consecrated and worshipping priestly house, until the time appointed of the Father. This was sublimely shadowed forth by the first priesthood, when their high priest passed beyond the sight of his brethren and stood in the presence of the Lord within the veil as their intercessor, while his sanctified people worshipped in the first sanctuary and court of Israel, as the whole congregation of the Lord. Our Lord therefore said, "And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are." John XVII. 11. All that our Advocate with the Father has asked him for shall surely be granted to him; for the holy Son said to his Father, "And I knew that thou hearest me always." "Neither pray I for these alone," (the apostles) "but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; that they all may be one," etc. In the fulfillment of our Lord's prayer, Paul was moved to testify, saying, "There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, and one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ." Eph. IV. 4-7. And the apostle Peter also, in harmony with the prayer of intercession, assured his brethren in Christ, who are born again, to the holy inheritance in heaven, that they "are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation." 1 Pet. I. 3-5.
We are thus divinely and blessedly assured that our Lord's holy intercession for all his purchased possession shall be fulfilled, just as he has asked his holy Father. God had promised to give his Son the heathen or Gentiles for his inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for his possession; therefore the good Shepherd said, "And other sheep I have, which are not of this" (legal) "fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one Shepherd." John X. 16. His word is faithful, positive and sure, and he says it shall be thus, and he must bring them, because they were his sheep or people. Thus he is faithfully fulfilling his prophetic and priestly and kingly authority and work, by purifying unto himself his peculiar people, and bringing them into his kingdom, and reigning over them in righteousness by his abounding and saving grace, to the praise and glory of God. "And he said, "It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel, I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth. *** Thus saith the Lord, In an acceptable time have I heard thee, and in a day of salvation have I helped thee: and I will preserve thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, to establish the earth, to cause to inherit the desolate heritages; that thou mayest say to the prisoners, Go forth; to them that are in darkness, Shew yourselves. They shall feed in the ways, and their pastures shall be in all high places. They shall not hunger nor thirst; neither shall the heat nor sun smite them; for he that hath mercy on them shall lead them, even by the springs of water shall he guide them. And I will make till my mountains a way, and my highways shall be exalted. Behold, these shall come from far; and, lo, these from the north and from the west; and these from the land of Sinim." Isa. XLIX. 6-12.
All this glorious power of the King of glory upon his mediatorial throne shows how truly Paul affirmed the superabounding of the grace that reigns through righteousness by our Lord Jesus Christ, and also manifests the perfection and absolute success of his everlasting priesthood. By the Spirit of revelation Isaiah wrote of him, saying, "Behold, the Lord God will come with strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him; behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him. He shall feed his flock like a shepherd, he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom." Isa. XL. 10, 11. O faithful and good Shepherd of his people! How safe are his helpless lambs! "Therefore the redeemed of the Lord shall return, and come with singing unto Zion; and everlasting joy shall be upon their head: and they shall obtain gladness and joy; and sorrow and mourning shall flee away." Isa. LI. 11. All this "shall" be, saith the Lord. To the people of his covenant mercies he says, "Fear not; for I am with thee: I will bring thy seed from the east, and gather thee from the west; I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Keep not back: bring my sons from far, and my daughters from the ends of the earth; even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him. *** I even I, am the Lord; and beside me there is no Savior. I have declared, and have saved, and I have shewed, when there was no strange god among you: therefore ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord, that I am God. *** I am the Lord, your Holy One, the Creator of Israel, your King." Isa. XLIII. Of this King in Zion it was written: "Thou art fairer than the children of men; grace is poured into thy lips: therefore God hath blessed thee for ever. Gird thy sword upon thy thigh, O most Mighty, with thy glory and thy majesty. And in thy majesty ride prosperously because of truth and meekness and righteousness; and thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things." Ps. XLV. 2-4.
"Rejoice, the Savior reigns
Among the sons of men;
He breaks the pris' ners' chains,
And makes them free again;
Let hell oppose God's only Son,
In spite of foes his cause goes on.
The cause of righteousness,
And truth and holy peace,
Design'd our world to bless,
Shall spread and never cease;
Gentile or Jew, their souls shall bow,
Allegiance due with rapture vow."
This is according to the new covenant, in which the Lord writes his laws in their hearts, and says he will be their God, and they shall be his people. When this is done by him, his laws are sacred and dear to them, and they love him and his laws. He also sheds his love abroad in their hearts, by the Holy Spirit, which is given unto them. Not only do the saved in Christ love God; for they axe taught of him to love one another. "Love is the fulfilling of the law." It is the first-fruit of the Spirit; "for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God," testifies the beloved John. Indeed, it is the love of Christ that constraineth his followers in their loyal service in his kingdom; for to them he is "the chiefest among ten thousand," and inexpressibly lovely and precious. Because he is their salvation, their life and their all in all, as has been in part shown in these pages. For this cause his people offer themselves willingly when his gracious and loving power is manifested in them, by the enlightening and sanctifying ministration of the Spirit of truth and comfort and peace. And so there is a holy delight in his worship and service, for he is their adored High Priest and King. His own blessed testimony is, "Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me." John VI. 45. For they have been taught of God, and he hath revealed his Son in them; therefore they know and love and serve him. In all this divine worship and service of love, through the sanctifying and beautifying and righteous reign of saving grace in their hearts, Christ is exalted and God is glorified, and the saints are united and edified together in faith and hope and love. And all this divine and spiritual service and worship of God in his kingdom of grace on earth, is by the perfection and power of our Lord's eternal priesthood. For all this life-giving power and saving virtue, thus manifested in his saints and in his body, the church, to the praise of the glory of God's grace, goes out of Christ to all his redeemed and quickened members, as truly as healing virtue went out of him to the suffering and dying woman who touched him, and was made perfectly well.
"Dear, dying Lamb! thy precious blood
Shall never lose its power,
Till all the ransom'd church of God
Be saved, to sin no more."
"For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and bring you into your own land. Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you; and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them. and ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God." Ezek. XXXVI. 24-28 This is the glorious fulfillment of the Lord's new covenant of mercy with his people, under our Lord Jesus Christ and by his reigning grace; and all these riches of mercy he has vouchsafed to them, according to this sure covenant in the blood of Jesus Here there is no possible failure to the heirs of promise, the priestly brotherhood of the holy and beloved Son of God. All this proclaims the infinite goodness, almighty power and inexpressible glory of the Holy One.