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his conversation here upon earth; for there were two perpetual qualities diffused through all his converse, affability and sincerity; affability, or sweetness, expressed by grace; and integrity, or sincerity, expressed by truth. Sinners are generally governed by two contraries, anger and deceit:
Astutum gestant rabido sub pectore vultum. They are profound, mysterious and impenetrable; and under specious appearances they hide the most fatal de. signs; like those clouds, which, under luminous aspects, conceal thunder and lightning, and hail and storm. The heart of Jesus Christ was all love, peace and benevolence towards men, and all his exterior was sincerity and sweetness.
But although this be true, yet this is not the sense of these words. Grace and truth are put here for the gospel of Jesus Christ. Grace in opposition to the rigours of the law: truth in opposition to prophecies, figures, and im. perfect beginnings.
1. The gospel is called grace, because God has mani. fested himself to us not with all the pompous and majestic grandeur with which he accompanied the law, when he published it on mount Sinai, but in a mild and gentle manner, under the veil of the sacred humanity of Jesus Christ; for which reason St. Paul says, Great is the mystery of godliness, God manifest in the flesh. Formerly, it was God manifest in thunder and fire; God manifest in the tabernacle-cloud; God manifest in the splendor of angels: but now it is, God manifest in the flesh, in a familiar manner, in a manner which no more frightens and alarms us.
2. Grace, because it consists only in a revelation of the mercy of God, in a declaration of remission of sins, and of his parental love, &c.
3. Grace, because it comes to us by the pure good pleasure of God, without our having contributed any thing to it, either by our merit, or by preparations to receive it; or even by the least desire after it. He hath given it to us freely in every sense; the blessing itself exceeds our merit; the manner of bestowing it bears no proportion to our goodness; for God gave it to us when we did not think of it, when we had no merit to render 'us worthy of
ime, I have finishe Gospel is callind glorious promehovah
it, yea, when we had only dispositions contrary to it. God loved us even when we were enemies.
4. Grace, because the Gospel is not only an outward invitation, which reaches the ear; but it is an inward ministration of the Spirit, it is the power of God to salvation. It is a word attended with divine efficacy, which converts us, and makes us new creatures.
5. Grace, in regard to the manner, in which the quick. ening Spirit, who accompanies the word, works in us; for he operates neither by enthusiasıns, nor ecstacies, nor violent transports, as formerly in the prophets; but by a gentle and tranquil impression admirably adapted to ra. tional creatures. It is by enlightening our understandings, by rectifying our reason, &c.
The Gospel is also called truth," 1. In opposition to prophecies in the law, which were only promises; the Gospel is the accomplishment of these; therefore Jesus Christ said upon the cross, It is finished; and at another time, I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. For this reason the Gospel is called the promise, because it is the execution of the great and glorious promises of God. God, in regard to the Gospel, calls himself Jehovah who is: under the law he calls himself Jehoveh who will be: but under the Gospel, who is, who was, and who is to come. For, having accomplished his ancient promises, be hath laid firm foundations of future glory."
2. Truth, in opposition to the ancient Jewish figures, of which Jesus Christ is the substance. The law was a shadow of good things to come: but the Gospel exhibits the substance, the original, the archetype of what was repre. sented in the law, the true spiritual Israel of God, the true deliverance from spiritual Egypt, the true manna, the true tabernacle, the true Jerusalem, -all these we have under the Gospel.
3. Truth, in opposition to the imperfect beginnings under the law. We are no longer under Tutors and Go. vernors; but children at full age. We have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear, 'but the spirit of adop
The Editor has omitted here, in the subsequent sketch of this discourse, three particulars which he deemed injudicious; namely, that the Gospel was, not erroneous, like the religions of the heathens-not unsati« factory and uninteresting, like philosophy not Tena:ory, as earthly things.
tion whereby we cry, Abba, Father. I cannot help remark. ing, by the way, the ignorance of Messieurs of Port Royal, who have translated this passage My Father instead of Abba Father, under pretence that the Syriac word Abba signi. fies father. They did not know, that St. Paul alluded to a law among the Jews, which forbad slaves to call a free man Abba, or a free woman Imma. The apostle meant, that we were no more slaves, but freed by Jesus Christ; and, consequently, that we might call God Abba, as we may call the church Imma. In translating the passage then, the word Abba, although it be a Syriac word, and unknown in our tongue, must always be preserved; for in this term consists the force of St. Paul's reasoning. . You may now pass to the consideration of the author of the Gospel. Grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. Here you may observe what was common both to Moses m berve whersco
wrest. and Jesus, and what advantages Jesus Christ had over Moses.
First then, Jesus Christ, like Moses, was reciprocally an interpreter, on God's part bringing to men the mysteries of revelation ; and on men's part presenting to God their faith, piety, prayers, and promises of obedience.
2. His ministry, like Moses's, was accompanied with mi. racles of divine power, and glory, &c.
3. He, like Moses, caused his gospel to be written for a perpetual rule; by which the church is to conduct itself to the end of the world.
But, whatever agreement there might be between Moses and Jesus Christ, there is no comparison between the one and the other. For,
1. Moses was not the author of the law, he was only the dispenser of it; God himself pronounced the most assential part out of the midst of the flames, and wrote it in the end with his own finger on tables of stone: but Jesus Christ is the author of grace and truth; for the Gospel is founded on his blood, on his propitiation, and merit.
2. Moses was not, properly speaking, the mediator of God's covenant with the Israelites, although he is so called in Scripture, because he was a typical mediator, that is, a simple interpreter betwecn God and the people. If God honoured him thus, it was neither in consideration of his personal merit, nor on account of the love which God had for him, that such a covenant was made; Moses himself was a sinner, and a real mediator he wanted for himself; but with Jesus Christ, on his own account, and for the love which the Father had for him, the covenant of grace was made, &c.
3. Moses could indeed report the sentiments and words of the people to God: but he could neither become a guarantee for their present sincerity nor for their future perseverance: not only because he could not govern their hearts, but even because he did not know them: but Jesus Christ is men's surety and respondent to God, both for the sincerity of their faith and holiness, and also for their final perseverance; for he intimately knows the hearts of men, and, being Lord of all, bows and turns them as he pleases.
4. The Spirit, which accompanied the legal economy, did not proceed from Moses; Moses was neither the source, nor the dispenser of it: but Jesus Christ is the true origin of this blessing; it is his Spirit, which the faithful receive; Of his fulness (says St. John) have all we received, and grace for grace.
5. Moses's miracles were wrought not by his own, but by a foreign power: but Jesus Christ wrought his miracles by his own power, &c.
Finally, Moses was only established as a servant over the house of God; but Jesus Christ as a Son, that is, as Master and Heir. For Moses indeed was a mere man: bu: Christ is the Son of God, and God hath blessed him for ever. Of him Moses prophesied, when he said, The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet like unto me, him shall ye hear. Deut, xviii. 15, 16. *
There are some texts which must be discussed by way of explication, although neither terms nor things are difficult; but because the matter is important, and a medi.
• This literal method of explication, of which Mr. Claude has given the above example, is very justly accounted the best way of interpreting Scripture. The Editor however takes the liberty of observing, that it might have been better if Mr. C. had made fewer subdivisions, and had been more particular in his choice of them. It seems best to adopt those which give a just view of the subject, and to reject every thing which appears forced or fanciful.
The specimen now exhibited, though not altogether free from exception, is by no means unworthy of attention. And as it may help to give the Reader some insight into the nature and use of the Ske.
tation of it beautiful and full of edification. Passages of this kind must needs be proposed in all their extent.
Take, for example, these words of St. Paul, 2 Cor. iv. 7. We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. This passage is of this sort; the terms are easy, and the subject, of which St. Paul speaks, has no difficulty: but yet, on ac. count of the importance of the matter, it must needs be explained, or, to speak more properly, extensively proposed.
I would then divide this text into two parts; the first should be the apostle's proposition; and the second, the reason, which he gives for it. His proposition is con. tained in these words, We have this treasure in earthen vessels. The reason, which he assigns, is contained in the following words, That the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.
In order to treat of the first properly, you must examine 1. What is the treasure, and, 2. How it is in earthen vessels.
letons, it is here drawn out in the form of those Skeletons; and the more important hints, which elucidate the different parts of it, are subjoined in notes.-The Reader is requested to cast his eye over it first, omitting what is contained in the brackets. 1. The ministry of the law.
The law may be considered as a ministry of Rigour, as opposed to Grace.
[Man knew neither himself nor his God It was necessary therefore to discover to him his misery, and his duty
This was the end which God proposed in the ministry of the law
The ministration of the law was well calculated to answer this ends ]
* God awfully displayed his own Majesty on Mount Sinai; and by the perfect law which he promulgate i, He shewed at once what a Creature ought to do, and what a Sinner must expect: And while by the ceremonial law he declared the necessity of an atonement, He loaded the Israelites with an insupportable yoke of ceremonies, enforcing the observance of them by the severest penalties; and gave jast such a portion of his Spirit, as might enable them to see their guilt and misery, and dispose them to receive the promised Messiah.