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in Manhood dwelleth ; in that New Jerusalem where Emmanuel, God with us, abideth; and there it passeth into the invisible, and is received in the unsearchable bosom of God. The man who calls this a speculation, doth speak unadvisedly with his lips. It is an exposition: the exposition of the words “ king and priest for God.” Of which double office, as yet realised in no one visible, but only in Christ invisible, though usurped by that son of mischief the hierarch of Rome, this is the glorious soul-satisfying import; that while the king ruleth ail, in single majesty, the priest doth offer all in humble worship upon the altar of God: so that what else does this double title signify, but the towering height of all sovereignty, combined with the perfect holiness of all service and worship of the invisible God; who is approached, and approachable only, as the God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Now what is to be understood by the next expression, “unto, or for, the God and Father of Jesus Christ ?” First, in what sense is the invisible Godhead the God of Jesus Christ? and in what sense is he his Father? And, secondly, how doth this connect him with the sanctified kings and priests? He is the God of Christ, in the same sense in which he is our God; because by Christ he is worshipped. By the word Christ, many do merely understand the eternal Son of God; wherein they err, not knowing the Scriptures. The Christ of God is not the Son in his God-head, but the Godhead in the Son made flesh. It is a form of being diferent from the being of God, inasmuch as the being of God is essentially separate from the creature; the being of Christ is essentially one with the creature: and because one with the creature, the Christ cannot worship himself, otherwise he worshippeth the creature in him especially included; and he therefore worshippeth the Being of God separate from the creature: which Being of God containeth Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, in their incomprehensible, unsearchable, essential form of existence; which, as hath been explained above, standeth in the person of the Father. It is one part of the Son's humiliation to bring himself to be the Head of the worshippers, and not the end of worship. As the end of worship he hath given, as the Spirit likewise hath, the glory to the Father, being for their parts contented to become in the sight of the creatures--the former, the head of the
worshippers, the latter the mover and sustainer of the worship. And thus the Godhead standeth disclosed, for the knowledge and for the salvation of the creatures. But, beloved, be not deceived, as if we thereby divided the substance of the Christ, or the substance of the Spirit of Christ, from the substance of the Godhead; but being separate subsistencies from the Father, they have power to assume unto themselves those relations to the creature, and to one another, which may best represent and make known, and bring into action the eternal relation of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, subsisting in the eternal Godhead, before creation was, or was contemplated. Most truly, therefore, doth Christ call the Father his God, and his Father; and most truly do the Apostles follow the same style in the introduction to all their Epistles. And in the same sense, also, doth he call him Father in the text, because, though doubtless there existed in the Godhead be. tween God and the Word such a relation as that of Father and Son doth set forth, such a love, such an identity of substance, such an image of person, as makes the eternal Sonship a great head of theology; yet was not this manifested unto creation otherwise than by symbols, until the Word became incarnate of the virgin. During the days of his flesh, he was not manifestly the Son of God, but only by express revelation of the Spirit known to be such ; until his resurrection from the dead, which declared him to be “the Son of God with power.” (Rom. i. 4.) As we shall likewise be declared by our resurrection from amongst the dead to be the sons of God (Rom. viii. 19); which calling we at present enjoy, which glory we shall hereafter possess (1 John iii. 1, 2). Finally, this dignity of kings and priests, this dignity of sons of God, this privilege of calling God our God and our Father, we have not out of Christ, but in Christ. And in order to have the assurance of it, the Spirit must unite us to Christ by faith now; and in order to have the reality of it, we must be raised up hereafter in the likeness, in the glory, in the bodily subsistence of the one redeemed and glo. rified humanity of Jesus Christ. For, as at present we are in the subsistence of the fallen Adam, one with him in form, and feature, and feeling, though separate from him in time and place; so shall we be hereafter one with Christ in form, and feature, and feeling, though separate from him in time and place. As Adam hath many members, and a dependent world of lower creatures, animate and inanimate, which he doth, as it were, suspend from his own being, and make sharer in his fate without any will exercised on its part, even so doth the Christ of God include many members of the like human substance redeemed and glorified, and doth suspend from his own being a redeemed and glorified world, without any will exercised on its part. And therefore it is, that we kings and priests, who have that standing only in him, and out of him, were the miserable slaves and bondsmen of sin, do ascribe unto him who hath done such great things for us, the glory and the dominion, for ever and ever.
We now come to the substance of the doxology, “Glory and strength for ever and ever.” In the four doxologies of the iv th and v th chapters, glory is a common ascription ; but dominion or power expressed by the word before us, occurreth only in the doxology pronounced by the creatures. Glory, as it seemeth to me, expresseth the effluence of Godhead; the impression made upon the creature by the Godhead coming forth from the invisible into sight. Before the creature hath had time to resolve the visible manifestation into its several intentions as concerning himself, that impression which it makes upon him in the act and article of becoming visible, I understand by glory. It is like the light proceeding from the brilliant sun, ere yet it hath been reflected or refracted by any medium whatever; and as the refracted ray, could it be gathered together into one, would shew its refulgent glory again, so, when any manifestation of Godhead hath been studied in its bearings of grace, mercy, love, power, &c., if you gather it together in the focus of your concentrated thought or action, it taketh the name of glory again ; so as that, in giving forth thoughts or acts in accordance with God's revealed will, we are said to glorify him. Now this glory which is, as it were, the first complete effulgence of the Godhead, and is, likewise, its consummate and con.centrated representation, doth stand wholly in Christ; of whom it was said at his birth, “ Glory to God in the highest;" of whom it was said long before his birth, “ Thou art my servant, O Israel, in whom I will be glorified ;"
and who said immediately before his passion, “ Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him: if God be glorified in him, God shall also glorify him in himself, and shall straightway glorify him.” And again, “I have glorified thee on the earth : I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. And now, O Father, glorify me with thine ownself, with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.” (John xvii. 4, 5.) In him standeth all the glory of God, the glory of his grace, the glory of his mercy, the glory of his justice, the glory of his holiness, and, in one word, the glory of his being. As God in the Shechinah dwelt, and out of the Shechinah spake, and from the Shechinah shot forth his arrows of judgment, so in Christ the true temple, the true glory of the temple, shall God for ever dwell, and thence make known his being and his blessedness, and through him execute all his behests for ever and ever. This I understand to be the meaning of ascribing glory unto Christ. And by the ascription of strength or dominion, I have to observe, that it is not dominion or princedom merely, which is expressed by another word (duvapıs); nor is it physical power, might, and strength, which is expressed by another word (10xvs), both of them in the doxologies of the iv th and vth chapters; but it is (kpatos) a word derived from an obsolete root, which signifies, to prevail, to be powerful ; and the proper meaning, therefore, of the word is potency, validity, victory. And finding it used in the doxology of the creatures and peculiar thereto, I am inclined to understand by it, that power which binds every thing to its proper sphere, and keeps it in the obedience of its proper law, that which sustains and supports the vigour of every creature, shortly expressed in these words, “ And in him all things consist.” This represents him as the basis of creation and its frame work; as it is written, “Rooted and built up in him.” (Col. ii. 7.) And again, “ The head from which all the body, by joints and bands having nourishment ministered and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God.” (ver. 19.) And again, “ In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord.” (Eph. ii. 21.) This sustaining might, this power to bring all things out of the dust of death and to reconstitute all things in an unchangeable and infallible condition, I consider to be the thing signified, by the ascription of strength; which we, feeling, and knowing, and believing, that in Christ is our only strength and stability, do therefore unto Christ ascribe it, even as all creatures do the like on the occasion of that glorious installation which the Lamb receiveth from him that sitteth upon the throne. And to denote the unchangeableness of the glorious constitution in Christ, it is added "for ever and ever,” for ages of ages, for eternity. And to give unto the doxology the fixture of God, there is added the solemn Amen. Let us, then, with one consent, we who know the Lord, lift up our voice and sing, “To Him that loved us and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and made us kings and priests unto his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen."
My object in these Lectures is strictly exposition, or the setting forth of the matters contained in the Book of Re. velations. It is not to discourse of doctrine, nor yet to apply doctrine, but simply to set forth the doctrine which is taught. Nevertheless, I cannot take leave of so pregnant a passage as the doxology without taking a short review of it in its personal application, and shewing how the truth contained should come home to our own minds. There ought, then, to be ever present to the soul of every man the conviction that God loveth him, and that the work of God in Christ, and the knowledge of God, communicated by Christ, is for the sake of teaching to sinful men how God loveth them. Did God in Christ create the world, and me, a part of it? It was done in love. Did God humble himself to be made flesh, and to tabernacle amongst us? It was done in love. Did God, in the Person of the Son, die to redeem me and all mankind ? It was done in love. Doth God, by the Spirit of Christ, sanctify me and the elect of God? It is done in love. The holiness of God standeth not in the way of his love, nor doth his love stand in the way of his holiness. The Gospel, at one and the same time, representeth his love and his holiness. For the Gospel is salvation from the consequences of sin, which consequences of sin are the manifest holiness of God. Inasmuch, therefore, as there is a state to be saved from by the Gospel, God's holiness is shewn forth; inasmuch as there is salvation from it, God's love is shewn