Imágenes de página


more complete and full examination. With this view, he has ventured to commit the following sheets to the press. He has only to beg that the Christian, who may take the trouble to read them, will not be so solicitous to reply to the arguments, as to examine and illustrate the truth.




THE kingdom of our glorious Mediator is but little noticed in the world; yet it is precious in the eyes of the Lord. The Lord hath chosen Zion; she is the redeemed of the Lord; he hath said, he who touches her, touches the apple of his eye; she is purchased by the blood of the lamb, sanctified by the Spirit of grace, and defended by the arm of Omnipotence. Notwithstanding she may still be covered with sackcloth, the days of her mourning have an end. The Lord will raise her from the dust, and make her an eternal excellency, and the joy of many generations. The mystical body of Christ is composed of that innumerable company, which no man can number-out of every nation, and kindred, and people, and tongue-which will finally stand before the throne of God and the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands. It is but one body, although composed of many members. The temple, which was a symbol of the church, was composed of many stones, although but one building. The spiritual temple is built of lively stones, upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets; Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone. This spiritual temple will continue

to rise under different dispensations, until the elect are gathered together from the four winds of heaven, and the top stone is carried up, shouting Grace, Grace, unto it.

The Mediator's kingdom is not of this world. "Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world : if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews." John xviii. 36. In remarking upon these words, we are naturally led to consider,

I. What the Mediator's kingdom is?

II. Its nature?

III. Its laws?

From which, we propose to make several inferences and illustrations for improvement.

Agreeably to the arrangement of our subject, we shall first endeavour to ascertain what the kingdom of the Mediator is; or that kingdom which he so emphatically calls "My kingdom," in distinction from all other kingdoms. "Jesus answered, My kingdom,"-Our glorious Mediator takes to himself the majesty of a sovereign, and claims a kingdom. In his mediatorial character he possesses, in an extensive sense, universal empire. He is exalted far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion; and has a name which is above every name. He is King of Kings, and Lord of Lords. He is not only king on his holy hill of Zion, but rules amongst the nations. He is, however, in an appropriate sense, king of saints under the gospel dispensation; as he governs the worlds with a view to his own glory and their exaltation.

That the Church, under the gospel dispensation, is, in a special manner, the kingdom of heaven, or the kingdom which Christ so often called his kingdom, appears evident, (it is thought,) from many passages of Scripture. The prophet Daniel, while interpreting the symbols of the four great empires which were to arise in the earth; adds, that "in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed." This kingdom could not be the Church Universal, for that was established in the family of Adam, and had continued, without being broken, in a line of holy men down to the prophet's day. It must therefore have a special reference to something future. When John the Baptist came preaching, he said, "Repent ye, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand;" fully implying that it had not then commenced. He preached repentance preparatory for ushering in that kingdom, which the God of heaven was about to set up. In the days of the fourth great kingdom mentioned in the prophecy of Daniel, the Lord Jesus Christ came into our world, to establish his kingdom. As he entered upon his ministry, he declared that the time was fulfilled, and that the kingdom of God was at hand. When he first commissioned his disciples, and sent them forth to preach, he directed them to say to their hearers, "The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you." In speaking of John the Baptist, he says, He was the greatest of prophets; but adds, "He that is least in the kingdom of God, is greater than he;" which must be conclusive evidence that John the Baptist was not in the kingdom

of God. At the last supper, after our Lord had blessed and partaken of the bread, he said to his disciples, "I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God." In like manner, after taking the cup, he said, "I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come." All of which seems fully to imply, that the kingdom which the God of heaven was about to set up, did not commence before the gospel dispensation. Christ came under the Mosaic dispensation, that is, under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, by the sacrifice of himself; and being found in the fashion of a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross: wherefore, God hath highly exalted him, and has given him a name which is above every name. After he arose from the dead he appeared to his disciples, "by many infallible proofs; being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God." "And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth; go ye, therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you and lo! I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen." Here we see the Mediator possessing a kingdom, and giving laws to his subjects, and commanding obedience. Although his kingdom was then small, like a little leaven; yet it had power to leaven the whole lump.


« AnteriorContinuar »