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feeling sense of that misery, as it were feeling it for them, actually suffering it in their stead by strong sympathy.
§ 33. Hence we may see how the same thing, the same ideas that distressed the soul of Christ and brought on his amazing sufferings, engaged him to go through them. It was ordered that the bitterness of the cup, though exceedingly dreadful, was of that nature, that the tasting of that bitterness, was the thing that engaged him to go on to drink up the cup; and that as the bitterness of it arose from the clear idea he had then given him of the infinitely hateful and dreadful nature of sin. The more lively this idea was, the more dreadful was it to the soul of Christ; and yet, the more lively his idea of the hatefulness and dreadfulness of sin was, which consists in disobedience to God, the more did it engage him not to disobey that great command he had received of his Father, viz. That he should drink this cup, and go through those sufferings. The more he had a sense how dreadful it is to contemn the authority of God, and to dishonour his holy name; the more would he be engaged to remove and abolish this dishonour, and to honour the authority of God. The more he had a sense of what an odious and dreadful thing sin was, the more would his heart be engaged to do and suffer what was necessary to take away this dreadful and odious thing from those whom the Father had given him. It was the lively exercise of love and pity to those whom the Father had given him, that occasioned so lively a view of the punishment to which they had exposed themselves, whereby his soul was filled with dismay. But this lively love and pity at the same time engaged him to suffer for them, in order to deliver them from their deserved punishment. And as pity towards his elect excited a lively idea of their misery; so on the other hand, the increase of his idea of their misery excited strong exercises of pity, and this engaged him still to endure those sufferings in their stead. § 34. From what has been said, we may learn how Christ was sanctified in his last sufferings. The suffering of his soul in great part consisted in the great and dreadful sense and idea that he then had of the dreadful, horrid odiousness of sin; which was done by the Spirit of God. But this could not be, without a proportionable increase of his aversion to, and hatred of sin; and consequently of his inclination to the contrary, which is the same thing as an increase of the holiness of his nature. Beside the immediate sight he had of the odious nature of sin, he had that strong sense, and that great experience of the bitter fruit and consequence of sin, to confirm his enmity to it. Moreover, he was then in the exercise of his highest act of obedience or holiness, which, tending to increase the principle, the bringing forth of such great and abundant fruit. tended to strengthen and increase the root. Those last suffer
ings of Christ, were in some respects like a fire to refine the gold. For, though the furnace purged away no dross, yet it increased the preciousness of the gold; it added to the finite holiness of the human nature of Christ. Hence Christ calls his offering himself up, his sanctifying himself; John xvii. 19. "And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also may be sanctified through the truth." Hence he calls those last sufferings a baptism that he was to be baptized with. It was a baptism to him in two respects, as it purged him from imputed guilt, and as it increased his holiness by the Spirit of God that gave him those terrible but sanctifying views. And so this is one way in which the Captain of our salvation is made perfect by sufferings; Heb. ii. 10. and v. 9. and Luke xiii. 32. Thus Christ, before he was glorified, was prepared for that high degree of glory and joy to which he was to be exalted, by being first sanctified in the furnace.
§ 35. Another way in which it was possible that Christ should endure the wrath of God was, to endure the effects of that wrath. All that he suffered was by the special ordering of God. There was a very visible hand of God in letting men and devils loose upon him at such a rate, and in separating from him his own disciples. Thus it pleased the Father to bruise him and put him to grief. God dealt with him as if he had been exceedingly angry with him, and as though he had been the object of his dreadful wrath. This made all the sufferings of Christ the more terrible to him, because they were from the hand of his Father, whom he infinitely loved, and of whose infinite love he had had eternal experience. Besides, it was an effect of God's wrath, that he forsook Christ. This caused Christ to cry out, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" This was infinitely terrible. Christ's knowledge of the glory of the Father, and his love to the Father, and the sense and experience he had had of the worth of the Father's love to him, made the withholding the pleasant ideas and manifestations of his Father's love, as terrible to him, as the sense and knowledge of his hatred is to the damned, that have no knowledge of God's excellency, no love to him, nor any experience of the infinite sweetness of his love. It was a special fruit of the wrath of God against our sins, that he let loose upon Christ the devil, who has the power of death, is God's executioner, and the roaring lion that devours the damned in hell. Christ was given up to the devil as his captive for a season. This antitype of Jonah was thrown to this great Leviathan, to be swallowed up as his prey. The time of Christ's suffering, was the time of the prevalency of the power of the devil, wherein Christ was delivered up to that power, as is implied in Luke xxii. 53. "When I was daily with you in the temple, ye stretched forth no hands against me: but this is your hour, and
the power of darkness." And therefore, when his last sufferings were approaching, Christ said, John xiv. 30. “The Prince of this world cometh." He was let loose to torment the soul of Christ with gloomy and dismal deas. He probably did his utmost to contribute to raise his ideas of the torments of hell.
§ 36. That God should all along require sacrifices in his church, and that something should be done, by all that worshipped him, to make atonement for their sins. Sacrificing obtained throughout the world, in all nations and ages; and, that such a multitude of sacrifices should be appointed; that sacrifices should be offered so continually, and on so many occasions, and joined with all their public worship; was a plain testimony of God, that a real atonement or satisfaction to his justice was necessary, and that God did not design in his manner of dealing with mankind, that men should be pardoned and accepted without atonement. And if there was nothing of true and real atonement and sacrifice, in those beasts that were offered, then doubtless they were an evidence, that there was to be some other greater sacrifice, which was to be a proper atonement or satisfaction, and of which they were only the presage and signs; as those symbolical actions which God sometimes commanded the prophets to perform, were signs and presages of great events which they foretold. This proves that a sacrifice of infinite value was necessary, and that God would accept of no other. For an atonement that bears no proportion to the offence, is no atonement. An atonement carries in it a payment or satisfaction in the very notion of it. And if satisfaction was so little necessary, that the divine majesty easily admitted one that bears no proportion at all to the offence, i. e. was wholly equivalent to nothing, when compared with the offence, and so was no payment or satisfaction at all; there he might have forgiven sin without any atonement. But if so, how came an atonement to be so greatly insisted upon, as is represented by all the prodigious expense and labour, and multitude of services, and ceremonies, and so great an apparatus, and so great pomp, which, with so much exactness, were prescribed to be continued through so many ages, respecting their typical sacrifices and atonements, and from God's church were propagated through the world of mankind? No mere creature can have any thing to offer to God, which is not his already for all that he has is God's gift to him.
§ 37. Let us consider how a perfectly wise, holy and disinterested arbiter, whose office it should be to regulate all things within the whole compass of existence according to the most perfect propriety, would determine, in case the creature should injure the Most High, should cast contempt on the majesty, and trample on the authority of the infinite Lord of the universe:
whether he would not determine that in such a case the injury should be repaired, his majesty vindicated, and the sacredness of the authority thoroughly supported; and that it was very requisite in order to things being regulated and disposed most fitly and beautifully, that such injuries should not be forgiven in the neglect of this, or without due care taken of this matter. If it be fit that the honour of God's majesty should be maintained at all in any degree, (which I suppose none will deny,) then why is it not most fit that it should be maintained fully? If it would be quite improper and unsuitable, that the dignity of the Supreme Being, the sacredness of the authority of the infinitely great Governor of the world, should be entirely neglected, should be suffered at all times, and to the greatest degree, to be trampled on, without any care to defend or support it; and that the majesty of this great King, as to the manifestation of it, should be obscured by his enemies to the greatest degree, and that continually and for ever, without any vindication or reparation at all; then why is it not most suitable and most becoming, that the vindication of it should be thorough, and the reparation complete and perfect?
§ 38. What has been observed, may serve to show the reasonableness of the doctrine of the satisfaction of Christ; and that it is most rational to suppose, that if God did determine to forgive such as had cast contempt on his infinite majesty, and on his authority, as the infinitely high Lord over all, and to take such into favour, infinite wisdom would some way or other so contrive the matter, that the injury done to the appearance or exhibition of the dignity and sacred authority of the great King, should be fully repaired, and his majesty entirely vindicated, and set forth in all awfulness, inviolable sacredness and worthiness of regard and reverence. It cannot here be reasonably objected, that God is not capable of properly receiving any satisfaction for an injury, because he is not capable of receiving any benefit; that a price offered to men satisfies for an injury, because it may truly be a price to them, or a thing valuable and beneficial; but that God is not capable of receiving a benefit. For, God is as capable of receiving satisfaction as injury. It is true, he cannot properly be profited; so neither can he be properly hurt. But, as rebelling against him, may properly be looked upon as of the nature of an injury or wrong done to God, and so God is capable of being the object of injuriousness; so, he is as capable of being the object of that which is the opposite of injuriousness, or the repairing of an injury. If you say, what need is there that God have any care for repairing the honour of his majesty, when it can do him no good, and no addition can be made to his happiness by it?-you might as well say, what need is there that God care when he is despised and dishonoured, and his authority and glory trampled on; since it does him no hurt?
It is a vain thing here to pretend that God cares only, because it hurts creatures' own happiness for them to cast contempt on God. Is that agreeable to the natural light of all men's minds, to the natural sense of their hearts, and to the dictates of conscience, which unavoidably and necessarily arise, after some very direct, most profane, and daring opposition to, and reproach of the Most High, that God is now angry and much provoked, only because the audacious sinner has now greatly hurt himself, and hurt his neighbours, that happen to see him? No, this is entirely diverse from the voice of natural sense in such a case, which inevitably suggests, that God is provoked, as one who will regard himself for himself, as having a direct respect for his dignity and majesty. And this is agreeable to the strictest reason. It is impossible, if God infinitely loves and honours himself, as one infinitely worthy to be loved and esteemed, but that he should, from the same principle, proportionably abhor and oppose opposition to, and contempt of himself. And if it be in its own nature decent and proper for him thus to love himself, then it is in its own nature fit and becoming in him to hate opposition to himself. And for the same reason, and from the same principle, God, when he is contemned and injured, and his authority and glory are trampled in the dust, will be disposed to repair the injury'done to his honour, and raise his injured majesty out of the dust again.
39. The satisfaction of Christ, by suffering the punishment of sin, is properly to be distinguished, as being in its own nature different from the merit of Christ. For merit is only some excellency or worth. But when we consider Christ's sufferings merely as the satisfaction for the guilt of another, the excellency of Christ's act in suffering, does not at all come into consideration; but only those two things, viz. Their equality or equivalence to the punishment that the sinner deserved; and, 2dly, The union between him and them, or the propriety of his being accepted in suffering, as the representative of a sinner. Christ's bearing our punishment for us, is not properly meriting that we should not bear it, any more than, if it had been possible for us ourselves to have borne it all, that would have been meriting that we should not be punished any more. Christ's sufferings do not satisfy by any excellency in them, but by a fulfilment. To satisfy by a fulfilment, and to satisfy by worthiness or excellency are different things. If the law be fulfilled, there is no need of any excellency or merit to satisfy it; because it is satisfied by taking place and having its course. Indeed, how far the dignity or worthiness of Christ's person comes into consideration, in determining the propriety of his being accepted as a representative of sinners, so that his suffering, when equivalent, can be accepted as theirs, may be matter of question and