« السابقةمتابعة »
suffer in the carrying on of this work, God calls him his fellow, 'ny, my neighbour' in counsel and advise, as David describes his fellow or companion; Psal. Iv. 14. We took sweet counsel together.' He was the fellow of the Lord of hosts, on this account that they took counsel together about the work of our salvation to the glory of God. Prov. viii. 21 to 31. makes this evident: that it is the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal word, and wisdom of the Father, who is here intended, was before evinced. What then is here said of him? 'I was daily the delight of God, rejoicing before him, rejoicing in the habitable parts of the earth, and my delight was in the sons of men.' When was this, that the wisdom of God the Father did so rejoice before him, on the account of the sons of men, ver. 24, 25. When there was no depth, when there were no fountains abounding with water, before the mountains were settled,' &c. whilst as yet he had not made the earth,' &c. But how could this be? Namely, by the counsel of peace, that was between them both, which is the delight of the soul of God, and wherein both Father and Son rejoice.
The first thing then is manifest; that there was a voluntary concurrence, and distinct consent of the Father and Son, for the accomplishment of the work of our peace, and bringing us to God.
2. For the accomplishment of this work, the Father who is principal in the covenant, the promiser, whose love 'sets all on work,' as is frequently expressed in the Scripture, requires of the Lord Jesus Christ his Son, that he shall do that which upon consideration of his justice, glory, and honour, was necessary to be done, for the bringing about the end proposed; prescribing to him a law for the performance thereof; which is called his will so often in Scripture.
What it was that was required, is expressed both negatively and positively.
1. Negatively, that he should not do, or bring about this work, by any of those sacrifices that had been appointed to make atonement 'suo more,' and to typify out what was by him really to be performed. This the Lord Jesus professeth at the entrance of his work when he addresses himself to the doing of that which was indeed required. Sacrifice and
f Zech. xiii. 7.
burnt-offerings, &c. thou wouldest not have.' He was not to offer any of the sacrifices that had been offered before, as at large hath been recounted: it was the will of God that by them, he, and what he was to do, should be shadowed out and represented; whereupon, at his coming to his work, they were all to be abrogated. Nor was he to bring silver or gold for our redemption, according to the contrivance of the poor convinced sinner, Mic. vii. 6. but he was to tender God another manner of price; 1 Pet. i. 18.
He was to do that which the old sacrifices could not do, as hath been declared. For it was not possible that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sins; Heb. x.5. ἀφαιρεῖν ἁμαρτίας, quod supra ἀθετεῖν et ἀναφέρειν est extinguere peccata, sive facere ne ultra peccetur; id sanguis Christi facit, tum quia fidem in nobis parit, tum quia Christo jus dat nobis auxilia necessaria impetrandi.' Grot. in Loc. Falsely and injuriously to the blood of Christ. ̓Αφαιρεῖν ȧuaprías, is no where in the Scripture, to cause men to cease to sin;' it never respects properly what is to come, but what is past. The apostle treats not of sanctification, but of justification. The taking away of sins he insists on, is such, as that the sinner should no more be troubled in conscience for the guilt of them: ver. 2. The typical taking away of sins by sacrifices, was by making atonement with God principally, not by turning men from sin, which yet was a consequent of them. The blood of Christ takes away sin, as to their guilt, by justification, and not only as to their filthy sanctification. This purification also by blood, he expounds in his annotations, chap. ix. 14. Sanguini autem purgatio ista tribuitur, quia per sanguinem, id est, mortem Christi, secuto ejus excitatione, et evectione, gignitur in nobis fides,' Rom. iii. 25. 'quæ deinde fides corda purgat.' Acts xv. 19. The meaning of these words is evident to all that have their senses exercised in these things. The aversion of the expiation of our sins, by the way of satisfaction and atonement, is that which is aimed at. Now because the annotator saw, that the comparison insisted on with the sacrifices of old, would not admit of this gloss. He adds, 'Similitudo autem purgationis legalis, et evangelicæ, non est in modo purgandi sed ineffectu.' Than which nothing is more false, nor more directly contrary to the apostle's discourse, chap. ix. x.
2. Positively, and here, to lay aside the manner how he was to do it, which relates to his office of priest, and prophet, and king, the conditions imposed upon him may be referred to three heads.
1. That he should take on him the nature of those, whom he was to bring to God. This is as it were prescribed to him; Heb. x. 5. 'a body hast thou prepared me;' or ' appointed,' that I should be made flesh, take a body therein to do thy will. And the apostle sets out the infinite love of the Son of God, in that he condescended to this inexpressible exinanition, and eclipsing of his glory; Phil. ii. 6, 7. 'being in the form of God, and equal to God, he made himself of no reputation, but took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of man;' or made a man. He did it upon his Father's prescription, and in pursuit of what God required at his hands. Hence it is said, 'God sent forth his Son, made of a woman;' Gal. iv. 4. and 'God sent his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh;' Rom. viii. 3. and properly in answer to this of the Father's appointing him a body, is it that the Son answers, Lo I come to do thy will.' I will do it, I will undertake it; that the great desirable end may be brought about, as we shall see afterward. So Heb. xiv. 15. And though I see no sufficient reason of relinquishing the usual interpretation of σπépμaτos Aßpaàμ πíλaußáveraι, Heb. ii. 16. yet if it be apprehendit,' and expressive of the effect; not assumpsit,' relating to the way of his yielding us assistance and deliverance, the same thing is intimated.
2. That in this 'body' or human nature, he should be a 'servant,' or yield obedience; hence God calls him his servant; Isa. xlii. 1. Behold my servant whom I uphold,' and that this was also the condition prescribed to him, our Saviour acknowledges; Isa. xlix. 5. Now saith the Lord that formed me from the womb to be his servant;' and in pursuit hereof, Christ takes upon him the form of a servant; Phil. ii. 6. and this is his perpetual profession, I come to do the will of him that sent me.'
' And this commandment I have received of my Father.'
So though he were a Son yet learned he obedience.'
should be his servant, and yield him obedience, in the work he had in hand. Hence be says, his Father is greater than he,' not only in respect of his humiliation, but also in respect of the dispensation whereunto he as the Son of God submitted himself to perform his will, and yield him obedience. And this God declares to be the condition whereon he will deliver man; Job xxxiii. 23. If there be a messenger (a servant) one of a thousand to undertake for him, it shall be so, I will say, deliver man; otherwise not.
3. That he should suffer and undergo what in justice is due to him, that he was to deliver. A hard and great prescription; yet such as must be undergone, that there may be a consistence of the justice and truth of God, with the salvation of man. This is plainly expressed Isa. liii. 10. 'When thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin,' or rather "if his soul shall make an offering for sin, then he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hands.' As if he should say, if this work be brought about, and if the counsel of peace which we have consented in, be carried on, if my pleasure therein be to prosper, thou must make thy soul an offering for sin. And that this was required of our Saviour, himself fully expresses even in his agony, when praying for the removal of the cup, he submits to the drinking of it, in these words: 'Thy will O Father be done;' this is that, which thou wilt have me do; which thou hast prescribed unto me, even that 'I drink of this cup,' wherein he 'tasted of death,' and which comprised the whole of his sufferings; and this is the third thing in this convention and agreement.
4. Promises are made upon the supposition of undertaking that which was required; and these of all sorts, that might either concern the person that did undertake, or the accomplishment of the work that he did undertake.
1. For the person himself that was to undertake, or the Lord Jesus Christ, seeing there was much difficulty, and great opposition to be passed through, in what he was to do and undergo; promises of the assistance of his Father by his presence with him, and carrying him through all perplexities and trials, are given to him in abundance. Some of these you have Isa. xlii. 4. He shall not faint, nor be discouraged,
8 John xiv. 28.
h Vid. Cocceium in locum.
אם תשים אשם נפשך
until he hath set judgment in the earth.' And ver. 6. 'I the Lord have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thy hand, and will keep thee, and give thee a covenant of the people.' Whatever opposition thou mayst meet withal, I will hold thee, and keep thee, and preserve thee, 'I will not leave thy soul in hell, nor suffer thine holy one to see corruption;' Psal. xvi. 3. So Psal. lxxxix. 28. My mercy will I keep for him evermore, and my covenant shall stand fast with him.' And hence was our blessed Saviour's confidence in his greatest trial. Isa. l. 5—9. ver. 5, 6. our Saviour expresses his undertaking, and what he suffered herein, ver. 7 -9. The assistance that he was promised of his Father in this great trial, on the account whereof he despises all his enemies with full assurance of success; even upon the Father's engaged promise of his presence with him. This is the first sort of promises made to Christ in this convention, which concern himself directly; that he should not be forsaken in his work, but carried through, supported, and upheld, until he were come forth to full success, and had sent 'forth judgment into victory.' Hence in his greatest trial, he makes his address to God himself, on the account of these promises, to be delivered from that which he feared; Heb. v. 7. Who in the days, &c. So Psal. lxxxix. 27, 28.
2. There were promises in this compact that concerned the work itself, that Christ undertook; namely, that if he did what was required of him, not only that he should be preserved in it, but also, that the work itself should thrive and prosper in his hand. So Isa. liii. 10, 11. When thou shalt make,' &c. Whatever he aimed at is here promised to be accomplished; the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper; the design of Father and Son for the accomplishment of our salvation, shall prosper. He shall see his seed,' a seed of believers shall be raised up, that shall 'prolong their days;" that is, the seed shall prolong, or continue whilst the sun and moon endure all the elect shall be justified and saved. Satan shall be conquered, and the spoil delivered from him. And this our Saviour comforts himself withal in his 'greatest distress;' Psal. xxii. 30, 31. and for this glory that 'was set before him,' the glory of 'bringing many sons to glory,' that was promised to him, 'He despised the shame and endured the cross; Heb. xii. 2. So also Isa, xlii. 1, 2.