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preserve by his life the salvation which he had purchased by his death. Hence the apostle assures us, that our salvation depends upon his intercession, and his intercession upon his priesthood, Heb. vii. 24, 25. This man, because he con. tinueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost, that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.'
4. He intercedes for his people, because he was their propitiation ; for the efficacy of his plea depends upon the value and virtue of his sacrifice. As the high priest under the law could not enter into the holy of holies, till by the slaying of the sacrifice he had blood to carry with him: so no more could our Priest be admitted to solicit at the throne of grace, til by his death he had satisfied the tribunal of justice. Thus, because he paid the debt as our Surety, he is fit to plead the payment as our Attorney. What he finished on earth, he continually presents in heaven. By shedding his blood he made expiation, and by presenting it he makes intercession. In the one he prepared the remedy, and in the other he applies it.
5. He intercedes for his people, because his doing so is one of the great ends of his ascension and session at the right hand of God. In his incarnation he came down from the Father to acquaint us with his gracious purposes, and how far he had agreed with God in our behalf; and at his ascension he went from us to the Father, to sue out the benefits which he had so dearly purchased. He drew up an answer upon the cross to the bill that sin, by virtue of the law, had drawn against us, and ascended to heaven as an Advocate to plead that answer upon his throne, and to rejoin to all the replies against it. And therefore the apostle tells us, that he is entered into heaven, to appear in the presence of God for us,' Heb. ix. 24.
6. He intercedes for his people, because of that matchless and amazing love which he bears to them. He loves them with a love infinitely transcending the reach of human or angelic conception; he loves them with a love that knows Beither height nor depth, breadth nor length, but is absolutely incomprehensible. His love to them brought him down from heaven, and made him willingly undergo all those sorrows and sufferings, which like impetuous torrents poured in
or his pers to the reach
comes die for them. And on but there he aer
Andant to live with he said, i 1en;
after his death them.
upon him. And certainly, seeing in his love and in his pity he purchased eternal redemption for them, he will never cease to plead for the application of it to them. Seeing in such plentiful streams he shed his precious blood to save them, it is not to be imagined that he will spare his prayers for them.
7. He intercedes for his people, because this service of love is that wherein he takes the greatest delight and pleasure. Before time existed, his delights were with the sons of men; and when the fulness of time did dawn, he said, Lo, I come,' &c. He had a delight to live with the sons of men, and to die for them. And no sooner does he enter heaven after his death and resurrection, but there he delights to act on their account, to plead their cause, and to intercede for all the blessings of his purchase to them. This is the will of the Father, and he delights to do it.
I conclude all with an inference or two.
1. How wonderful is the love of God in appointing an Intercessor for us, not an angel, but his own beloved Son! Were we left to ourselves, and to our own pleas, our least sins would ruin us, and all the grounds of intercession we could plead upon would be rejected, as unworthy of acceptance before the throne of God.
2. How wonderful is the love of our Redeemer, in con. descending to act so friendly a part to us, notwithstanding all our unworthiness, and foul miscarriages against him! How should it fill our hearts with wonder, that he who is our Judge, should take upon him to manage our cause in the court of heaven; that he who has a mouth to condemn us, and wrath to consume us for our sins, should bind the arms of his wrath, and employ his tongue to solicit our cause and procure us the richest blessings!
3. Then true believers have a friend in the court of hea. ven, who is agenting their cause, managing their concerns, and will make all things work together for their good. Whatever their cause be, and however fearful they may be about the issue of it, all shall go right at length, through the interest of their mighty Intercessor.
4. Believers cannot finally miscarry, and utterly fall away: for they shall be kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation. Their Redeemer ever liveth to make intercession for them. So that neither their own sins, nor all the
nd employ blessings a friend
temptations of Satan, nor the frowns or allurements of the world, shall ever prevail to make them fall from their stedfastness, or from the favour of God: for Christ, as their High Priest, hath died for their sins, and will never intermit his suits to God in their behalf till they be safely brought to glory.
5. Lastly, Employ the Lord Jesus Christ as your High Priest, to bring you to God, depending on his merit as the ground of the expiation of your guilt, and giving you a title unto eternal life. And make use of him as your Advocate with the Father, to procure you all the blessings you stand in need of for time and eternity.
OF CHRIST's KINGLY OFFICE.
Psalm ii. 6.—Yet have I set my King upon my holy hilt
THE New Testament leaves us no ground to doubt of our
| Lord Jesus Christ being the person here spoke of, as several passagesin this psalm are expressly thereinapplied to him, The words contain a direct assertion of Christ's being appointed King of Zion, his spiritual kingdom-Therein we have,
1. His office: He is a King, invested with all regal power and princely authority: being • King of kings, and Lord of lords ;' yea the Prince of the kings of the earth. And this name he hath written on his vesture and on his thigh, Rev. xix. 16.
2. His kingdom, over which he rules, the holy hill of Zion; which was an eminent type of the gospel-church, and is called holy, because the temple, the house of God was built upon it.
3. His right to this kingdom ; I have sent him my King, says Jehovah. The Father hath placed him in that office, giving him, as God-man, Mediator, . all power in heaven and in earth.” He is given to be Head over all things to the church.?
4. The stability of this kingdom against all attempts made to oppose or destroy it, Yet have I set my King, &c.—Though enemies roar and rage, and leave no means unessayed to hinder the erection and establishment thereof; yet all their plots shall be unsuccessful, and all their deliberations shall
miscarry.. I have set him as King, and will maintain his throne.
The doctrinal proposition arising from the words is,
In discoursing from this doctrine, I shall shew,
I. I am to shew that our Lord Jesus Christ is a King.. This will appear, if ye consider,
1. That he was prophesied of in the Old Testament un. der this character. Thus old Jacob on his death-bed says of him, Gen. xlix. 10. • The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come.' And says the evangelical prophet, Isa. xi. 1, 2, 3. • There shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a branch shall grow out of his roots. And the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of know. ledge, and of the fear of the Lord: and shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the Lord, and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears.
2. That he was of old promised to his people under this notion: Isa. ix. 6, 7. "Unto us a child is born, unto us a Şon is given, and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice, from henceforth even for ever. Zech. ix. 9,
Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold thy King cometh unto thee: he is just and having salvation, lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the fole of an ass. Micah v. 2. Out of thee shall he come forth unto me, that is to be Ruler in Israel.' He is called the King by way of eminency, Cant. i. 4. • The King hath brought me into the banqueting-house.' Ezek, xxxiv. 24. "I the Lord will be their God, and my servant David a prince among them. That he should be a King, was declared to his mother, by the angel, before his conception in her womb, Luke i. 32, 33. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David. And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever, and of his kingdom there shall be no end.' And hence he is called • King of kings, and Lord of lords,' Rev. xvii. 14. i
3. That he has all the ensigns of royalty. He has a sword: hence it is said, Psal. xlv. 3. Gird thy sword upon thy thigh, O thou Most Mighty. By this we are to understand the word of God, which is the great instrument by which he maintains and propagates the glory and honour of his kingdom in the world.—A sceptre, which is another badge of royal majesty, Heb. i. 8. “A sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.' By this we are to understand his · Spirit, which he puts forth in the government of the world, and in his operations of grace in the hearts of his people, guiding and conforming them, through his word and ordi. nances, to the holy will of God.-A crown: It is said, Rev. vi. 2. that 'a crown was given him, and he went forth conquering and to conquer. And we read of a crown wherewith his mother crowned him in the day of his espousals, Cant. iii. 11.–An escutcheon or coat of arms: He bears the lion in his arms; hence called the Lion of the tribe of Judah,' Rev. v. 5; which imports that he should be a great conqueror and a victorious King.–A throne, Heb. i. 8. • Thy throne o God, is for ever and ever.- Subjects, over whom he rules, even all the creatures in heaven and in earth, Psal. i. 9. · His kingdom ruleth over all,' Psal. ciii. 19. All the angels of heaven have taken the oath of allegiance to him, Heb. i. 6. • Let all the angels of God worship him. More especially he rules in the church. God the Father has set the crown on his head, and he holds it by immediate tenure from Heaven.-He enacts laws, which all his subjects are bound to obey. His laws are contained in his word, and they reach both the outward and the inward man.
4. That he sealed this truth with his precious blood. When Pilate asked him, “ Art thou a King then? he answered, Thou sayest that I am a King.' To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world. On this