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order to redeem man; and might he be faved confiftent with the divine law, without fuch a Mediator, doing and fuffering all this, the love and grace exercised in redeeming and faving him, would have been infinitely lefs, and as nothing, compared with that benevolence which is expreffed in the incarnation, humiliation, death and fufferings of the Son of God, which are neceffarily implied in this redemption. God the Father giving his Son and the Son of God giving himself, to fuffer an ignominious, cruel death, and be made a curfe, that finners, his enemies, might be redeemed from the curfe, and have eternal life, is an infinitely greater gift, and higher exercife and expreffion of difinterefted love or benevolence, than merely to fave man from eternal destruction, and give him endless life, could the latter be done without the former.

This is the light in which the holy fcripture fets this matter. There this is reprefented as the greatest, most remarkable and glorious inftance and difplay of divine benevolence, that God has given his Son to die, and Chrift has given himself unto death as a ransom, to deliver finners from hell, and procure eternal life for them. God fo loved the world, that he gave his only begotten So, that whofoever believeth in him, fhould not perish, But have everlafting life."* "God commendeth (dif plays in the most amiable, and brighteft light) his LOVE Towards us, in that while we were yet finners, Chrift died for us."+ Hereby perceive we the love of God, betaufe he laid down his life for us. In this was manifefted the love of God towards us, because that God fent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love! Not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and fent his Son to be a propitiation for our


John, iii, 16.

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+ Rom. v, 8. ‡ 1 John, iii, 16, iv, 9, 10.

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5. There is fomething yet farther neceffary in order to the falvation of men: Though by the atonemen which Chrift has made by his death, a way is open for the pardon and falvation of finners, confiftent with rectora nightcoufnefs, and the honour of the divine law; ye man is fo obflinate in his rebellion, and fuch an enemy to God, that he cannot be perfuaded to embrace the gof pel; but will diflike and oppofe Chrift and the way o falvation by him, unlefs his heart be renewed by th omnipotent influences of the holy fpirit. Chrift ha therefore obtained by his obedience and fufferings, th holy spirit to be given unto men to recover them from their total depravity, and form their hearts to true holi nefs. This is an infinite gift. It is no lefs than Go giving himfelf to men, in the third perfon of the adora ble Trinity; uniting himself to them, and dwelling.i them, as the principle and author of all their holiness an happiness forever. Did man need no such an grace, the divine goodnefs and beneficence in his reden 4ion, would be unfpeakably lefs, and would not be gloriously difplayed, as now they are. In order to deem man, God not only delivers him from infinite and gives him infinite happiness and glory, when m in himfeif is infinitely odious, guilty and ill deferving but, in order to this, gives himself repeatedly, and in d J. .ferent ways. ways. He gave himfelt to die on the cros ranfom for man, to be a propitiation for their fins. T Father gave the Son, and the Son gave himself. He giv himself alfo in the third perfon of the Trinity, the H Ghost, in renewing and fanctifying the redeemed, dwelling in them forever. The Mediator faid, "I pray the Father, and he fhall give you another comfort that he may abide with you forever; even the fpirit truth."* And God, in a Trinity of perfons, gives hi felf to the redeemed as their infinite, everlasting port

* John, xiv, 16, 17.


and happiness. Thus divine benevolence is exhaufted, and gives all away: Infinite goodnefs can give no more. God gives him felf, and all he has for the redemption of man! This is, in the highest degree, an "unspeakable gift.

6. This benevolence and goodness, appears greater, and is more illuftrious in the falvation of man, in that all is given freely, without moncy and without price, as man is infinitely unworthy of it; and as fuch receives this redemption as a free gift, the whole being offered and given to every one who is willing to receive it. Men obtain an intereft in this falvation, not by works of rightcoufnefs which they do; not by any worthinefs in them, or by any thing they offer, as the price of the divine favour; but by believing in the Mediator, receiving the record which God has given concerning his Son, and accepting falvation, as it is freely offered and given, trufting wholly in Chrift, and receiving all from him, as a free gift, to fuch who are not only wholly without any defert of the leaft favour; but are infinitely odious and ill deferving. This is to be faved by faith, by which the free grace of God in the falvation of finners is exercifed and difplayed to the higheft degree, as is abundantly reprefented in divine revelation. St. Paul infifts much upon this. He having proved from fcripture that all men are finnes, confequently infinitely ill deferving, fays, "Therefore by the deeds of the law there fhall no flesh be juflified in his fight; for by the law is the knowledge of fin. But now the rightcoufnefs of God, without the law, is manifeted, even the righteoufnefs of God, which is by faith f Jefus Chrift, unto all, and upon all them that believe. Being juftified freely by his grace, through the redemption. that is in Jefus Chrift: Whom God hath fet forth a propitiation, through faith in his blood. Now to him that worketh (that is, in order to offer his works as the price of God's favour) is the reward not reckoned of grace, but

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of debt. But to him that worketh not (that is, has nothing to recommend him, and acknowledges he has done nothing by which he deferves the divine favour, more than any other man) but believeth on him that juftifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace." "By grace are ye faved, through faith, and that not of yourfelves, it is the gift of God."+

The above particulars, put together, and taken into one view, ferve to illuftrate the observation, that the redemption of man is the highest inftance of the exercise of the love of God, in which divine, infinite benevolence has an object equal to itself, and is acted out and difplayed to the higheft degree, and beft advantage to be feen and celebrated by the redeemed and all holy creatures, with increafing views and happinefs forever and ever. In the redemption of man, the infinitely benevolent JEHOVAH, "fulfils all the good pleasure of his goodness, and "mercy is built up forever." In this work God shows his glory by causing all his goodness to be displayed before the redeemed; while his name is proclaimed and celebrated. "The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, long fuffering and abundant in goodness, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and tranfgreffion and fin." This goodness, this love of God, is in fcripture celebrated as great love. "But God, who is rich in mercy, for the great love, wherewith he loved us, &c. Love which paffeth knowledge." It is called the riches, the exceeding riches of his grace. "In whom we have redemption through his blood, the grace. forgiveness of fins, according to the riches of his And hath raifed us up together, and made us fit together in heavenly places, in Chrift Jefus. That in the ages to come, he might how the exceeding riches of his grace, in, his kindness towards us through Jefus Chrift.*



Rom. iii, 20, &c. iv, 4, 5, 16. † Eph. ii, 8.2 Theff. i, 11. Pfalm, lxxxix, 2. Exod. xxxiii, 18, 19, xxxiv. 6, 7. ¶ Eph. ii, 4, 3, 19, Eph. i, 7, 1, 6, 7.

The love of God is exercifed in the redemption of man in its infinite flrength, in overcoming difficulties and obftacles infinitely great, which were in the way of the exercife of it towards man, and oppofed it; in delivering from infinite evil, and giving him infinite good. This benevolence is infinite mercy and compaffion to the infinitely miferable. It is exceeding rich, free and fovereign grace, which gives fuch deliverance, fuch falvation, not only to the undeferving, but infinitely guilty, vile and ill deferving.

IV. THIS defign and work, the redemption of man, has been gradually introduced and opened from the firft apoftacy to the coming of Christ, and from that time down to this day; and will be carried on until it shall be completed, at the end of the world, and the day of judgment.

Every thing, and all events which tock place in the world, from the beginning of it, during four thoufand years, were preparatory to the coming and incarnation of the Redeemer; while other ends, refpe&ting redemption, were in view, and answered. And fince that event, and the refurrection and exaltation of Chrift to the throne of his kingdom, what has taken place is to be confidered as the firft fruits of redemption, and preparatory to much greater things, which are yet to take place in the accomplishment of this great work, which will not be completed till the day of judgment. This has been reprefented by our Saviour in a number of fimilitudes, fuch as the following. "The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of muftard feed, which a man took and fowed in his field: Which indeed is the leaft of all feeds; but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and be- . cometh a tree: So that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof. He fpoke another parable. The kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven, which

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