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went into the holy presence of God; yet not without blood : which blood of the goat and of the bullock typified Christ’s blood, as is expressly declared Heb. xiii. 11. What then have we signified by this great action of atonement ? for this is the proper act of Christ our High Priest. The sacrifice is, as we have said, the offering up of his own spotless flesh. His going with its blood into the holy place, is his rising from the dead and ascending into the presence of the Father, to present there the Lamb which had been slain for the sin of the world. There the Son of Man, first born from the dead, rightful High Priest by primogeniture, being the first-begotten of God, doth present or offer in the holy place of the heavens his spotless sacrifice; first for all the priesthood, that is, for the chosen ones, who are kings and priests, and shall fill the royal priestly office of creation. For them he makes atonement, and for them his intercession is accepted ; in proof of which acceptance he sealeth them with his Father's Spirit of promise. And this is the offering for the priesthood, for the whole family of Aaron. Next, that sacrifice which he offered on the cross prevaileth to purify the sanctuary in its threefold divisions; the most holy place, the holy place, and the court of the altar. And what is this? We know that the most holy place is the heavens; and the beavenly things which needed to be purified with better sacrifices are, the New Jerusalem that cometh down from heaven ; the inheritance of the saints now in heaven, but ready to be revealed in the last time; the New Jerusalem where is the tabernacle of God, and of which God is the light. This part of creation is the most holy place, in which, when we shall be raised in the likeness of Christ, we shall have our habitation ; and the holy place, considering things as they are to be in the Millennium, is the land of Judea, where is the nation of kings and priests in flesh, and the rest of the world is the outward part of the temple, or rather the tabernacle ; but as the Millennium is not complete purification to any thing save the true Jerusalem, forasmuch as death and decay are in every other place, I carry forward the complete fulfilment of the type contained in the atonement for the tabernacle to the period consequent upon the judgment, when, as I believe, the whole earth shall be the holy place, and the rest of creation shall
be as it were the outward court. All the tabernacle or thing in which God is worshipped ; that is, all creation considered as a place being holy, yet with a more holy, and a most holy, the most holy, being the New Jerusalem, occupied by Christ and his risen saints, the church; the more holy being the rest of this earth, and the holy the sun and moon and stars, which are created in a subservience to this earth all puny as scientific men may regard it in re. spect of magnitude and physical importance. But if out of man's loin's the King of all the universe came, out of man's habitation the citadel, and palace, and temple of the universe may likewise well come. Now Christ, when he carried the body of man free into the presence of God, did carry the dust of the ground in thither, did carry all subservient matter of sun and moon and stars in thither, and finding acceptance for that body of his, did find acceptance for all body; that is, for all matter. And thus hath he made an atonement for the whole fallen visible creation, and for those who are to minister in it as kings and priests. This now I conceive to be the one great act of our High Priest ; as his one great prerogative is, to stand in the presence of God. To know therefore that Christ is our High Priest, as the raiment which he weareth in the vision doth teach us, is to know that atonement is made for us and for the whole world. If any one say, But where now is the universality of the atonement as to persons? I answer, that the day of atonement is not the typical form of that truth, but of the truth which I have explained above. The day of atonement is Christ's acting as High Priest in the heavens : but Christ in the heavens acteth only for the election of the Father, for the true Israel ; not for the Israel that is so in the flesh, but for the Israel that is so in the spirit ; and therefore this day of atonement was special in its application to the priests and to the tabernacle, and through them to all Israel. There are other typical forms of the truth of the universal atonement, of which Adam is the chief: but into this we are not called
upon to enter here; only as it is a matter much agitated in the church, and a question of the highest importance, I deem it good to guard every thing which I say with respect to
I the special and peculiar application of Christ's work, from being misconstrued into a gainsaying of the universality of the atonement made by his death, which I regard in my heart as a foundation of the faith as it was once delivered to the saints. Nevertheless, every thing which concerns the Jewish people peculiarly, is for a type of the election, who are the true kings and priests; and so, also, I may say that every thing in the Apocalypse also concerneth the election, being the history of their battles for the throne and sceptre of creation under, or rather in fellowship with, Christ, creation's Head.
This now is the great doctrine involved in the High Priesthood of Christ, that he for me hath been accepted of God, and I in him am admitted into the presence of God; that he for me hath redeemed the lost inheritance of the world, and I in him am crowned a King and Priest for God ;-all for me a poor worm, a wretched sinner, an infirm helpless creature ! Oh, what is it to know this truth, that God looketh upon Christ as perfected High Priest, not for himself alone, but for all over whom he is High Priest anointed ! A high priest without many
for whom he standeth to minister, is no high priest at all. A high priest doth nothing for himself; he is an intercessor for many; he is a sacrificer for many; he is accepted for many; he is honoured as the Head of many. To look upon Christ, therefore, as accepted before God for himself alone, is to deny his High Priesthood, is to make void the very name of High Priest. If so be then that the substance and essence of this name and office of High Priest is, that what befalleth him, and what betideth him, befalleth and betideth him not for himself alone, but for all in him represented, all in him elected before the foundation of the world ; then what are my fears, and what are my doubts, and what are my surmisings grounded upon my short-comings? what are they but a denial that Christ is all accepted, all honoured, not for himself, but for many. If I believe Christ to be my High Priest, I believe myself wholly accepted, wholly perfected, wholly dignified in him; and to introduce fictions of transference from him to me of righteousness, and from me to him of guiltiness, is, in verity and truth, to do away with his name and office of High Priest, which cannot be a truth if such fictions are permitted.-Let then this first manifestation of the Son of Man, in robes of the High Priest, assure every believer, that, as Christ is in the sight of God, so is he: as Christ is in the favour of God, so art thou, O believer, whosoever thou art: as Christ is in the purpose of God, so art thou, O believer, whosoever thou art. This is the meed of faith, this is the purchase, this the power, this the excellency of faith, that gift of God,--to bring you, without let or stay, into the unity of Christ's favour, safety, perfection, dignity, and glory.
Such is the great and precious truth presented to us by means of the robe and girdle of the high priest, with which our Saviour in this vision appears invested: and methinks it should stop the mouth of those ignorant and pestilent decriers of the Apocalypse, who consider nothing so meritorious as to prevent a Christian from making it his special study; and it ought to teach wiser and better men to give more considerate heed to the symbols of this book, which are nothing less than the language for appropriating unto Christ every type, history, and prophecy, which had been thrown out before, as anticipations of his all-inclusive person and office. But there is yet another great truth taught us under the vesture with which he is clothed, and which the high priest might not wear in the holy presence of God, but only without the veil, according to the commandment of the Lord, written in the xvith of Leviticus, verse 3: “ He shall put on the holy linen coat, and he thall have the linen breeches upon his flesh, and shall be girded with a linen girdle, and with a linen mitre shall he be attired.” Thus went he all in white without an ornament, without any glory into the presence of God, on the high day of atonement. But when he was finished with this the holiest part of his office, and had no more to go in before the Lord, but only to finish the work of the day, in the presence of the people it was thus commanded him of God, verse 23 : “ And Aaron shall come into the tabernacle of the congregation, and shall put off the linen garments which he put on when he went into the holy place, and hall leave them there. And he shall wash his flesh with water in the holy place, and put on his garments and come forth to offer his burnt-offering, and the burnt-offering of the people, and make an atonement for himself and for the people.” Now forasmuch as our great High Priest appeareth in the vision
arrayed not in the holy but in the glorious garments, not in the pure whiteness of unrefracted light, where God abideth, but in the glorious vestments of many colours, for the instruction and entertainment of a creature's sense, we gather beyond a question that the scene of the vision is not in heaven, in the presence of God within the veil, but on earth without the veil, in the presence, and for the edification of living men ;-in other words, that it is a vision concerning the church in flesh, and not the church disembodied, seeing we know that the flesh is what the veil signified. (Heb. x. 20.) The vision therefore concerneth what is called the church visible; which truly is the only church on earth. What divines have chosen to call the church invisible upon earth, is not recognised in Scripture by such a name. In Scripture, visibility is essential to the church in flesh, and is indeed its proper and peculiar distinction from the church disembodied. The true opposites are not church visible and church invisible ; for these are one, as the tabernacle was one, though part invisible within the veil, and the other visible without the veil ; but church visible and apostasy visible; or, to drop the use of the word visible, where it is of no use, the true opposites are, the church and the apostasy. This vision, therefore, concerneth the church on earth, the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein (Rev. xi. 1), and not “ the court which is without the temple, which is given unto the Gentiles, and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty-and-two months.” (Rev.xi. 1, 2.) In this remark, I anticipate the progress of the Revelation, in which there is no distinct mention of the apostasy before the with chapter. There is, first, Christ revealed as Head over his church on earth, contained in the first three chapters, which are all addressed to churches subsisting in cities of the earth : there is next Christ revealed in his relations unto the church in heaven, and his actings as the Head thereof, against the kings of the earth, who being put in the place of vicegerents or lord lieutenants of Christ and his saints, seek to usurp the power unto themselves, and therefore are, after a sevenfold succession of judicial visitations at length dethroned and dispossessed by the Lamb which was slain, who, by conquering death, appeared in heaven Redeemer