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rejects him as a Prophet, and both of them refuse to come to God through him as their High Priest : on the other hand, the antinomian may seem to rely on him as a Priest, whilst he determines that “he " will not have him to reign over him.” But these and similar dependences are mere delusions: for Christ rules as a Priest on his throne: he intercedes with regal authority, and he teaches his disciples to rely on bis atonement and advocacy, to shelter their souls under his omnipotent protection, and to submit to his sovereign rule. He reveals as a Prophet, what he purchased as a High Priest, and confers as a munificent Prince. The obedience, which he requires of his subjects, he by his grace disposes and enables them to perform, and renders it accepted through his intercession. So that they, who truly receive him in one of these combined offices, receive him in them all.
In this manner our Lord prepares the souls of his people for the inheritance which he hath prepared for them; nor could any one of these distinct parts of his mediatorial undertaking, apart from the others, by its utmost efficacy accomplish that gracious purpose. His sacrifice and intercession, indeed, render it consistent with the glory of God, to admit us sinners into his presence, to receive us to his favour, to make us his children, and to give us an inheritance in his own holy habitation : but how should we profit by this provision, did he not send forth his word and his ministers to proclaim the glad tidings, to give the invitations, and to set before us his precious promises and new covenant-engagements? How can we receive the advantage even of this revelation, without we understand and believe it? or how shall we credit such a humbling spiritual inessage, except the eyes of our minds be opened by the Holy Spirit?' How could we unholy creatures be made meet for this holy inheritance, without the influences of his new-creating Spirit? How could we overcome the powers of darkness, and all our enemies, if he did not fight for us? How could we meet the king of terrors, if lie did not engage to support and deliver us; and finally to raise our bodies, incorruptible, iinmortal, and glorious, to unite with our souls in the everlasting enjoyment of the love of our reconciled God and Father?
We indeed may consider Christ as our Shepherd and Physician, or in many other characters illustrative of our dependence on him and obligations to him: yet they may all with propriety be referred to the offices of Prophet, Priest, and King, according to the old and scriptural distinction. These are comprised in his title, Christ, the MESSIAH, the ANOINTED of God; as prophets, priests, and kings were anointed under the typical dispensation of the Old Testament.'
11 Cor. ii. 12-14. 1 Sam. x, 1. xyi. 13.
· Lev. viii. 12.
1 Kings xix. 16,
Is this then our creed, our experience, and our dependence? Do we thus receive and rely on CHRIST our Prophet, Priest, and King ? and do we, in the patient obedience of faith and love, “ wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus CHRIST
unto eternal life?'” Our answer to these enquiries, as in the presence of our heart-searching Judge, is of infinite importance; for this, and this only, is genuine Christianity.
1 Jude 20, 21.
E S S A Ý XI.
All things having been made ready for the salvation of sinners, in the person and mediation of the great Redeemer: it was also necessary, that the method, or medium, of appropriating this inestimable benefit, should be clearly and expressly revealed : and this leads us to the consideration of the scriptural doctrine of Justification. I shall therefore, in the present Essay, briefly explain the meaning of the words justify and justification, as they are used by the sacred writers ;-show that we must be justified before God by faith alone; -consider the peculiar nature of faith, and the manner in which it justifies ;-assign a few reasons why justification and salvation are ascribed to faith, rather than to any other holy dispositions or actions ;—and answer some of the more plausible objections to the doctrine.
The terms justify and justification are taken from the common concerns of life; and they are applied, with some necessary variation of meaning, to the dealings of God with his rational creatures.; especially to his admission of sinful men into a state of acceptance, and to the privilege of being thus accepted. They denote therefore, that such persons are now dealt with, as if they were righteous ; be. ing wholly exempted from those sufferings which are strictly speaking penal, and entitled to the reward of perfect obedience: though in themselves they have merited no reward, but, on the contrary have deserved the punishment denounced in the law against transgressors.—These are commonly said to be forensick terms; that is, they refer to the practice of courts of justice among men; and indeed they seem to have been originally taken from such transactions: yet this derivation gives us a very inadequate idea of their import. For when a man is charged with a crime before an earthly tribunal, he must be either condemned or acquitted: if he be condemned, he may be pardoned, but he cannot be justified; if he be acquitted, he may
be justified, but he cannot stand in need of pardon. Moreover, a criminal may be acquitted for want of legal evidence, or from other causes, when there can be no reasonable doubt of his guilt: yet no accusation for the same crime can be brought against him; though he is very far from being fully justified, or admitted to the full enjoyment of those privileges which belong to an unsuspected member of civil society; nor would he be a proper person to be confided in, or advanced to a place of honour and responsibility. Whereas, if