A COMMENT UPON Christ's last Prayer In the Seventeenth of JOHN.

Wherein is opened, The Ʋnion Beleevers have with God and Christ, and the glorious Priviledges thereof.

Besides many other Gospel Truths, there is also shewed,

  • 1 That the end why the Saints re­ceive all glorious Grace, is, That they may be one, as the Father and Christ are one.
  • 2 That God the Father loveth the Faithful, as he loveth Jesus Christ.
  • 3 That our Savior desireth to have the Faithful in Heaven with himself.
  • 4 That the happiness of our being in Heaven, is to see Christs Glory.
  • 5 That there is much wanting in the knowledg of Gods Love, in the most able Saints.
  • 6 That the Lord Christ lends dayly direction, according to the dayly need of his Servants.
  • 7 That it is the desire, and endea­vor of our Savior, that the dea­rest of Gods Love, which was be­stowed on himself, should be gi­ven to his faithful Servants.
  • 8 That our Ʋnion, and Communion with God in Christ, is the top of our happiness in Heaven.

By that Faithful, and known Servant of Christ, Mr. THOMAS HOOKER, late Pastor of the Church at Hartford in New-England; somtimes Preacher of the Word at Chelmsford in Essex, and Fellow of Emmanuel Colledg in Cambridg.

Printed from the Authors own Papers, written with his own Hand. And attested to be such, in an Epistle, By Thomas Goodwin, And Philip Nye.

London: Printed by Peter Cole at the sign of the Printing-Press in Cornhil, neer the Royal Exchange. 1656.

MR Hooker On the Seven­teenth of John Being his Seventeenth Book, made in New-England.


THE more eminent Matter of these Sermons, is our my­stical Union with God and Christ; a Subject but rare­ly handled by Divines, and then but overly in comparison to what those other Benefits by Christ have been, that yet but flow from this, or do accompany it: So as any smal ad­vance of Light into this Mystery, is highly to be valued, specially from so [Page]good a Hand, or Heart rather, so deep­ly experienced, and acutely insighted, as was our Author.

This Head, though it lay in the Road of another Course of Mini­stry the Author held, namely, the ope­ning the whol Work of the Application of our Redemption, in all the parts thereof (shortly to follow this into publick view, so far as he had proceeded in it) whereof this of Ʋnion, was designed one (as by his Draught, or Scheme of that Work to be Prefaced to the whol, appears) and accordingly should have been largely treated on, Subject wise, a­part by it self in its due place and order. Yet whether it was that himself, fore-ap­prehending he might not live so long (as he did not) to arrive thereat in that Method (and yet withall considering the more special necessity of this Sub­ject to this Age) he therefore did antici­pate this miscellaneous Treatment of it, is not for us to say▪ only we may surely affirm, that our all-wise God (who disposeth of the Gifts, Ministrati­ons, [Page]and Operations of, and by his faithful Servants) he foreseeing all, secretly guided him to this Precursory handling of it in this way of Comment upon the seven last Verses of Christs last Prayer; which we may well suppose to have been intended by himself, but as a pre­liminary Essay of that more ample, and set Tractate on this Argument, he af­terwards intended; because he inter­mingleth therewith, Observations a­bout other high, and glorious Gospel Truths (whereof this Soyl, of al other Scriptures, must be supposed most fer­tile) as the Text did give occasion.

And surely he was by the same Di­vine hand as specially directed, both, in his Choyce of this Scripture, for his Ground unto this Subject; which being the Conclusion of Christs most solemn last Prayer, must be supposed to express the very bottom of his heart, and what lay deepest therein, and therfore came forth last: As also in the Occasion on which he chose to preach these Sermons which was then, when this Union is designed to [Page]be sealed up to Beleevers more conspicu­ously than in other Ordinances, name­ly, at the Administration of the Lords Supper and towards his latter end: conjunct with the Solemnization whereof, even among his Apostles, it was that Christ did pour forth this Prayer unto his Fa­ther before his Death. And indeed he that is spiritual, and reads these Explana­tions, will readily find, and must ac­knowledg, that he was proportionably raised and assisted by a Gospel Spirit, as the Dignity of the Matter, and Solemnity of the Dignity of the Matter, and Solemnity of the Occasion, meeting in such a Con­junction, did require; it being found in experience, that according to the ele­vation of the Occasion, and Sublimity of the Matter discoursed of, the Holy Ghost raiseth, and enlargeth the Spirits of an holy man of God, that is experien­ced in what he speaks.

The true stating the Bounds, for kind, or degree of that Union with God, which the Saints are admitted to by God, is of great use and necessity to this Age; the Fate whereof, is erring either [Page]on the right hand, or the left, in the greatest Points of Religion, and in this Point, more grossly and wretchedly than in any other, yea, and in the other (as may easily be observed) upon oc­casion, first of a misunderstanding of this one, and particularly of some pas­sages and Clauses in this Prayer of our Lord, which here have passed the search and discovery of our Author, as [that they may be one as we are one, &c.] which some have dared to interpret to be Unity, that is, Union, to be oneness in Nature with God himself; others to be at least a sameness of Union for kind, with that which the man Jesus holds with the Natural Son of God; whereof one is a contradiction to the Nature of Creature, and Creator, as Paul hath set it, Rom. 1.25. the other to Christs being Mediator and Head between God and us, Of whom we ARE in Christ Je­sus, who is that one Lord, and we by him; his Union therefore Primary, and Ori­ginal; ours Secondary, and Derivative. Set but then, and keep the true distance [Page]between God and his Elect as Creatures, and between Christ and those Elect, as whose all they are from God, is in and through Christ; so as that the Creature can never be one in Nature with God, who alone is blessed for ever, and that the Saints shal never be one Person with the Son of God, who is God blessed for ever. And whatever Unions or Communions with God, are, or can be supposed to be next to these two, to be sure the Saints are, and shall be partakers there­of; for next to himself, and his Son, they are Gods Beloved, and the only be­loved of him.

Besides, what Glory, & spiritual quic­kening our (Author giving the ve­ry Life-meaning of our Lord concerning this Union) an holy heart wil secretly, and suddenly find breaking in upon it, and it self inspired withal, in the rea­ding: It wil together therewith con­found, without speaking a word of set Confutation, all such lewd mistakes, which it is better to let sleep, and vanish into eternal darkness, and silence, than [Page]to make mention of them.

And upon al these accounts, we have great boldness to commend these Ser­mons to the VVorld, withal assuring the Reader, that they are all as they were penned under his own hand: Praying with all earnestness, that the holy Spirit of Christ, who dwelt in the Author so richly, and blessed his preaching of them with so much life and power; yea, that filled our Savior Christs heart first in his praying, and uttering these words; and then his beloved Disciples so many yeers after in the penning of them, would graciously accompany this quickning and Heavenly Expositi­on of them, to the hearts of al spiritual souls that read this.

Thomas Goodwyn, Philip Nye.

The Name of several Books printed by Peter Cole in Leaden-Hall, London, and are to be sold at his Shop at the sign of the Printing-press in Cornhil, neer the Exchange.

Mr. Hookers Books that are printed.

Eleven Books made in New-England, by Mr. Thomas Hookers and printed from his own Papers, written with his own hand; are now Published in three Volums, two in Quarto, and one in Octavo, Viz. The Application of Redemption by the Effectual work of the word and Spirit of Christ, for the bringing home of lost sinners unto God. The first Book on 1 Pet. 1.18.19. The second on Math. 1.21. The third on Luk. 1.17. The fourth on 2 Cor. 6.2. The fift on Math. 20.5, 6, 7. The sixt on Revel. 3.17. The seventh on Rom. 87. The eight on John, 6.44. The Ninth on Isa. 57.15. The Tenth on Act. 2.37. The Last, Viz. Christs Prayer for Beleevers, on John 17.

There are six more Books of Mr. Hookers, now printing in two Volums.

Nineteen several Books of Mr. William Bridge, Collected in­to two Volumns. Viz.
  • 1 The Great Gospel Mystery of the Saints Comfort and Holi­ness, opened and applied from Christs Priestly Office.
  • 2 Satans Power to Tempt, and Christs Love to, and Care of His People under Temptati­on.
  • 3 Thankfulness required in every Condition.
  • 4 Grace for Grace▪ or, the Overflowing of Christs Fulness received by all Saints.
  • 5 The Spiritual Actings of Faith through Natural Impos­sibilities.
  • 6 Evangelical Repentance.
  • 7 The Spiritual Life, and In­being of Christ in all Beleevers.
  • 8 The Woman of Canaan.
  • 9 The Saints Hiding-place in time of Gods Anger▪
  • 10 Christs Coming is at our Midnight.
  • 11 A Vindication of Gospel Ordinances.
  • 12 Grace and Love beyond Gifts.
  • 13 Scripture Light, the most sure Light: compared with,
    • 1. Revelations and Visions.
    • 2. Natural and Supernatural Dreams.
    • 3. Impressions with, and without Word.
    • 4. Light and Law within.
    • 5. Divine Provi­dence.
    • 6. Christian Experience.
    • 7 Humane Reason.
    • 8. Judicial Astrology. Delivered in Ser­mons on 2 Pet. 1.19.
  • 14 Christ in Travel: Wherein
    • 1 The Travel of his soul.
    • 2 The first and after effects of his Death.
    • [Page]3. His Assurance of Issue.
    • 4 And His sa­tisfaction therein. Are opened and clee­red in three Sermons, on Esay, 53.11.
  • 15 A Lifting up for the Cast-down, in case of,
    • 1. Geat sin.
    • 2. Weakness of Grace.
    • 3. Miscarriage of Duties.
    • 4. Want of Assurance.
    • 5. Affliction.
    • 6. Temptation.
    • 7. Dissertion.
    • 8. Un­serviceableness.
    • 9. Discouragements from the Condition it self. Delivered in thirteen Sermons on Psalm, 42.11.
    His Four Sermons concerning
  • 16 Sin against the Holy Ghost.
  • 17 Sins of Infirmities.
  • 18 The False Apostle tried and Dis­covered.
  • 19 The Good and means of Esta­blishment. And the great Things Faith can Do, and Suffer.
Eleven Books of Mr. Jeremiah Bur­roughs lately published; also the Texts of Scripture upon which they are grounded.
  • 1 The Rare Jewel of Christian Con­tentment, on Phil. 4.11. Wherein is shewed,
    • 1 What Contentment is,
    • 2 It is an Holy Art and Mystery,
    • 3 The Excellencies of it,
    • 4 The Evil of the contrary sin of Murmuring, and the Aggravations of it.
  • 2 Gospel Worship, on Levit. 10.3. Wherein is shewed, 1 The right man­ner of the Worship of God in general; and particularly, In Hearing the Word, Receiving the Lords Supper, and Prayer.
  • 3 Gospel Conversation, on Phil. 1.17. Wherein is shewed,
    • 1 That the Con­versations of Beleevers must be above what could be by the Light of Nature,
    • 2 Beyond those that lived under the Law,
    • 3 And sutable to what Truths the Gospel holds forth. To which is ad­ded, The Misery of those men that have their Portion in this Life only, on Psal. 17.14.
  • 4 A Treatise of Earthly Mindedness, Wherein is shewed,
    • 1 What Earthly mindedness is,
    • 2 The great Evil there of, on Phil. 3. part of the 19. Verse. Also to the same Book is joyned, A Treatise of Heavenly Mindedness and Walking with God, on Gen. 5.24. and on Phil. 3.20.
  • 5 An Exposition, on the fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh Chapters of the Pro­phesie of Hosea.
  • 6 An Exposition on the eighth, ninth, and tenth Chapters of Hosea.
  • 7 An Exposition on the eleventh, twelfth, and thirteenth Chapters of Hosea, being now compleat.
  • 8 The Evil of Evils, or the exceeding Sinfulness of Sin, on Job, 36 11.
  • 9 Precious Faith, on 2 Pet. 1.1.
  • 10 Of Hope, on 1 John. 3.3.
  • 11 Of Walking by Faith, on 2 Cor. 5.7.
Eleven several Books, by Nich. Cul­peper, Gent. Student in Physick and Astrology.
  • 1 The Practice of Physick, con­taining seventeen several Books. Where­in is plainly set forth, The Nature, Cause, Differences, and Several Sorts of Signs; Together with the Cure of all Diseases in the Body of Man. Being chiefly a Transl [...]tion of the Works of that Learned and Renowned Do­ctor, Lazarus Riverius, now living; Councellor and Physitian to the pre­sent King of France. Above fifteen thousand of the said Books in Latin have been Sold in a very few Yeers, ha­ving [Page]been eight times printed, though all the former Impressions wan [...]ed the Nature, Causes, Signs, and Differences of the Diseases, and had only the Me­dicines for the Cure of them; as plain­ly appears by the Authors Epistle.
  • 2 The Anatomy of the Body of Man, Wherein is exactly described, the several parts of the Body of Man, illustrated with very many larger Brass Plates than ever was in English before.
  • 3 A Translation of the New Dispen­satory, made by the Colledg of Physiti­ans of London. Whereunto is added, The Key to Galen's Method of Physick.
  • 4 The English Physitian Enlarged.
  • 5 A Directory for Midwives, or a Guide for Women. Newly enlarged by the Author in every sheet, and Illu­strated with divers new Plates.
  • 6 Gal [...]u's Art of Physick, with a larg [...] Comment.
  • 7 A New Method both of studying and practising Physick.
  • 8 A Trestise of the Rickets,
  • 9 Medicaments for the Poor, or Phy­sick for the Common People.
  • 10 Health for the Rich and Poor, by Diet without Physick.
  • 11 Riolanus Anatomy, in which (with the Anatomy) is exactly descri­bed
    • 1. The Diseases incident to every Part of the Body of Man.
    • 2. How the Diseases are Seated in each Part.
    • 3. The Cure of each Disease as it's seated in that Part.

A Godly and fruitful Exposition, on the first Epistle of Peter. By Mr. John Rogers, Mi­ster of the word of God at Dedham in Essex.

The Wonders of the Load-stone. By Samuel Ward of Ipswitch.

An Exposition on the Gospel of the Evange­list St. Matthew. By Mr. Ward.

Clows Chyrurgery.

Marks of Salvation.

Christians Engagement for the Go­spel, by John Goodwin.

Great Church Ordinance of Baptism.

Mr. Love's Case, containing his Petitions, Narrative, and Speech.

Vox Pacifica, or a perswasive to peace.

Dr. Prestons Saints submission and Satans Overthrow.

Pious Mans Practice in Parliament Time.

Mr. Symsons Sermon at Westminster.

Mr. Feaks Sermon before the Lord Major.

Mr. Phillips of Christs Genealogy.

Eaton on the Oath of Allegiance and Convenant, shewing that they oblige not.

A Congregational Church is a Ca­tholick Visible Church. [...] Samuel Stone in New England.

A Treatise of Politick Powers, wher­in seven Questions are Answered,

  • 1. Whereof Power is made, and for what ordained.
  • 2 Whether Kings and Go­vernors have an Absolute Power over the People.
  • 3 Whether Kings and Governors be subject to the Laws of God, or the Laws of their Countrie.
  • 4 How far the People are to obey their Governors.
  • 5 Whether all the people have, be their Governors.
  • 6 Whether [Page]it be Lawful to depose an evil Gover­nor.
  • 7 What Confidence is to be gi­ven to Princes.

The Compassionate Samaritan.

Dr. Sibbs on the Philippians.

The Best and Worst Magistrate. By Obadiah Sedgwick.

The Craft and Cruelty of the Chur­ches Adversaries. By Matthew New­cemen.

A Sacred Penegerick. By Stephen Martial.

Barriffs Military Discipline.

The Immortality of Mans Soul.

The Anatomist Anatomized.

King Charts his Case, or an Appeal to all Rational Men concerning his Tryal.

Mr. Owens stedfastness of the Pro­mises.

A Vindication of Free Grace; Endea­voring to prove,

  • 1 That we are not e­lected as holy, but that we should be holy; and that Election is not of kinds, but persons.
  • 2 That Christ did not by his Death intend to save all men, and touching those whom he intended to save, that he did not die for them only, if they would beleeve, but that they might beleeve.
  • 3 That we are not ju­stified properly by our beleeving in Christ but by out Christ, beleeving in him.
  • 4. That which differenceth one man from another, is not the improve­ment of a common ability restored through Christ to all men in general, but a principle of Grace wrought by the Spirit of God in the Elect. By John Pawson.
Six Sermons preached by Doctor Hill. Viz.
  • 1 The Beauty and Sweetness of an Olive Branch of Peace, and Brotherly Accommodation budding.
  • 2 Truth and Love happily married in the Church of Christ.
  • 3 The Spring of strengthening Grace in the Rock of Ages Christ Jesus.
  • 4 The strength of the Saints to make Jesus Christ their strength.
  • 5 The Best and Worst of Paul.
  • 6 Gods eternal preparation for his Dying Saints.

The Bishop of Canterbury's Speech on the Scaffold. The King's Speech on the Scaffold.

The Magistrates Support and Burden. By Mr. John Cordel.

The Discipline of the Church [...] New England, by the Churches and Sy­nod there.

A Relation of the Barbadoes.

A Relation of the Repentance and Conversion of the Indians in New England; by Mr. Eliot, and Mr. Mayh [...]w.

The Institutes of the Laws of Eng­land, by John Cowel. Octavo.

A description of the Grand Signiors Seraglio; or the Turkish Emperors Court. By John Greaves. Octavo.

The reigning error Arraigned at the Bar of Scripture, and Reason. By Franscis Fulwood. Octavo.

The state of Future Life. By Tho­mas white. Twelves.

The Royal and delightful Game of Picquet, written in French, and now rendered into English. Octavo.

De copore Poli [...]: or, The Elements of Law, moral, and politick. By Tho­mas Hobbs of Malmsbury.

The London Dispensatory in Latin in Folio.

The London Dispensatory in Latin in Twelves.

The Parliament Fa [...]t.

These several Books of Physick and Chyrurgerie will shortly be prin­ted in English.

Reverius Observations, with fifteen hundred and seventie other Histories and Observations of other men.

Riolanus Anatomy.

Bartholinus Anatomy.

All the Works of Daniel Sennerius.

The Idea of Practical Physick, being a compleat Body of Physick.

And all Fernelius his Works.

Francisci Tayleri, Capitula Patrum: Hebraicè & Latinè edita. Una cum Annotationibus sensum locorum diffici­lium Exprimentibus.

Francisci Tayleri, Lamentationes Je­remiae vatis, Denuo è fontibus He­braicis translatae, cum Paraphrasi Chal­daica, Masora magna & parva, & Commentariis Rabbi Shelomoh, Jarchi & Aben Ezrae, è Buxtorfii Bibliis mag­nis excerptis.

Mr. Burroughs, on 1 Cor. 5 7. and 18, 19.29. And fifty nine Sermons on Matthew, 11.28, 29, 30. Are Printing.

The Contents of Mr. Hooker's seven­teenth Book, made in New-England.
JOHN, 17.20.

  • CHrist's Prayer as a Mediator. Page 1
  • The excellency of that Prayer Page 2
  • The Parts of it
  • 1 For himself, to verse 6. ib.
  • 2 For his Servants ibid.
DOCT. 1.
  • The first especial scope of prayer, should be for such things as do more especially concern us. ibid.
  • The Subjects of our Saviors prayer, are set forth two waies Page 3
    • 1 From their Quality, They shal beleeve. Page 4
    • 2 From a comparison of equa­lity, not only for the Apostles, [Page]but for all Page 4
  • For Explication; there is no difficulty in the words, but what is meant by their Word. ibid.
  • That is the Gospel which they preached ibid.
  • Their word opposed to two things ibid.
    • 1 To the Law ibid.
    • 2 To the Doctrines of men Page 5
DOCT. 2.
  • The word of the Gospel, is the only ordinary me [...] to work Faith. ibid.
  • Reas. 1. ibid.
  • Reas. 2. Page 7
  • Reas. 3. ibid.
  • Use 1. Of Terror. Page 8
  • Use 2. For Instruction, and Comfort. Page 9
  • Use 3. Examination Page 10
  • Use 4. Exhortation ibid.
DOCT. 3.
  • Saving Faith hath the Lord Jesus for its Ob­ject. Page 11
  • The Second thing is, The Com­parison of equality ibid.
DOCT. 4.
  • The Interceding prayer, or Intercession of our Sa­vior, doth alike respect all. Page 12
  • Christs Intercession was inten­ded for al Beleevers alike. ib. Three things opened
    • 1 The Nature, and manner of Christs Intercession Page 13
    • 2 The works and vertue of it.
    • 3 The Reasons of the Point. ibid.
  • Quest. What are those spiri­tual affairs of ours? Page 14.
  • Answ. They appear in three Particulars ibid.
  • The Reasons are three. Page 16
    • 1 Because Christ indifferently undertook to be our Mediator ibid.
    • 2 Because it is common to all alike 17
    • 3 Because it is necessary to all alike ibid.
  • Use 1. For Instruction ibid.
  • Use 2. For Direction Page 19
  • Use 3. Consolation ibid.
  • Use 4. Terror. Page 20
  • Use 5. Exhortation to Belee­vers Page 21
DOCT. 5.
  • Christ hath especial care of such as shal be Beleevers even in the worst conditi­on of their Unbelief. Page 22
  • [Page]See this made good in some par­ticulars,
  • 1. In the several degrees of it.
  • 2. The Rea­son.
  • 3. The Ʋse. Page 23
  • The vertue of Christs prayer appears in five particulars. ibid.
  • The Reasons are three
    • 1 From the soveraignty of Gods will Page 28
    • 2 From the Riches of Gods mercy in Christ ibid
    • 3 It is the scope also of Christs coming ibid.
  • Use 1. Of Instruction Page 29
  • Use 2. Matter of admiration. Page 31
Christ's Prayer for Beleevers.
  • Ver. 21: That they all may be one, &c. page 35
  • The Exordium ibid.
  • The things Christ praies for, re­ferred to two Heads page 36
    • 1 Concerning their spiritual welfare here ibid.
    • 2 For the top of their Glory in another World ibid.
  • That which Christ begs for, is that they may be all one Page 37
  • This is, first propounded Secondly, amplified by four se­veral Circumstances ibid.
  • The chief priviledg of the Saints, is from Christs prayer, that they may be all one Page 38
  • Enquiry
  • 1 Of what kind of Ʋnity our Savior speaks ibid.
  • 2 What that Ʋnity is ibid.
  • Answ.
  • 1. Negatively
  • 2. Affirmatively
  • Ʋnity of Love is not the chief aim of the Text, proved ne­gatively by two Reasons. Page 39, 40
  • 2 Affirmatively Here is meant the unity of that spiritual Relation, which they have to Christ, and in him to God. ibid.
  • Two things to be unfolded to shew wherein this Ʋnity consists Page 41
    • 1 How the Son is one with the Father ibid.
    • 2 How the Saints must be one in them ibid.
  • Four short Conclusions to ex­press them by Page 41, 42, 43.
  • [Page]The Sum of all that hath been said Page 44
  • The Reasons
    • Reas. 1. Our Ʋnion with God the Father, was the next end intended by Christ in the great work of Redemption. Page 45, 46.
    • Reas. 2. This work being sa­vingly made good upon the soul, makes way for the en­larged expression of the fruits of Holiness. Page 49
  • Use 1. Of Instruction Page 50
  • Use 2. Of Comfort Page 51
  • Use 3. Of Exhortation Page 54
Vers. 21. — That the world may beleeve that thou hast sent me. Page 56
  • The words opened ibid.
  • Two particulars in the words Page 57
    • 1 Christ is sent by God the Fa­ther ibid.
    • 2 God will have this beleeved by the Ʋngodly ibid.
  • Three things to open the phrase 58
    • 1 What the weight of the phrase carrieth ibid.
    • 2 In what regard our Savior is said to be sent ibid.
    • 3 Wherein this sending lies ibid.
  • Use 1. Matter of wonderment Page 64
  • Use 2. For Comfort Page 65
  • Use 3. For Direction ibid.
  • Three things to be done. Page 66
    • For Explication enquire
    • 1 What is meant by the world. Page 67
    • 2 How they are said to beleeve ibid.
    • 3 What they beleeve in the sen­ding of Christ ibid.
  • Wicked men are called the World, from three things
    • 1 Because the god of this world ruleth in them ibid.
    • 2 They are acted by the spirit of the world Page 68
    • 3 They take contentment in the things of the world ibid.
  • Use. To discover our own condition Page 69
  • Quest. What is this Faith? Page 72
  • Answ. It includes two things mainly ibid.
    • 1 It is a humane faith that grows from force of argu­ment ibid.
    • 2 The evidence of this truth carrieth a control with it. ib.
  • Quest. 3. What the World shal thus beleeve concerning [Page]Christs sending Page 73
  • Answ. Our Savior looks at three things ibid.
  • Three Reasons of this Page 74
  • Use, Of Exhortation. Page 76
Verse 22. And the glory which thou hast given me, I have given them, &c. Page 77
  • Three things to be attended here
    • 1 What it is our Savior hath received ibid.
    • 2 What it is he doth com­municate ibid.
    • 3 The End why ibid.
  • Two words opened touching the former ibid.
    • 1 What is meant by Glory.
    • 2 How Christ is said to re­ceive it ibid.
  • 1 Glory signifies Gods incom­municable propertie Page 78
  • 2 Glory is taken for Grace ib. Hence we learn
  • 1 How to judg of true Glory Page 79
  • 2 We see the way to walk, if we desire to be glorious Page 80
  • Quest. 2. How our Savior re­ceives this Page 82
  • Answ. As man, by gift ibid
  • 1 It is given by Grace of per­sonal Ʋnion ibid.
  • 2 It is given by way of Cove­nant Page 83
  • 1 Our Savior received all most glorious Grace in a most eminent manner. Page 84
  • 2 He hath it out of measure. ibid.
  • 3 Without alteration Page 85
  • Use 1. Of Examination Page 86
  • Use 2. Of Comfort to the Saints Page 87
  • Use 3. For Direction ibid.
  • II. What Christ gives to the Saints. ibid.
  • 1 The Saints share in a like glorious Grace. ibid.
  • 2 They have it by gift from our Savior ibid.
  • The first Truth made good by four Particulars Page 88
    • 1 This Grace is inward and spiritual ibid.
    • 2 This impression of Grace is universal ibid.
    • 3 They partake of all perfecti­ons of these kinds Page 90
    • 4 They share in the immutabi­lity of Grace ibid.
  • 2. They receive this by Gift Page 91
  • For the Saints in Adam for­feited
    • 1 This Glory ibid.
    • [Page]2 They have nothing of worth to purchase it. Page 91
    • 3 They cannnot receive it o­therwise than by gift Page 92
  • Object. Our Savior is bound to do this by Covenant. ibid.
  • Answ. affirmatively: He is so bound ibid.
  • Quest. Put why did the Lord so engage himself? ibid.
  • Answ. Of his free Grace ibid.
  • The Reasons of both Parti­culars together. ibid.
    • 1 Taken from the proportion between the first and second Adam Page 93
    • 2 Christs Humane Nature re­ceived this Grace for that end ibid.
  • Use. This gives heavy evi­dence against wicked men Page 94
    • 1 Against all Hypocrites Page 95
    • 2 Against those that please themselves with the appre­hension of some Grace Page 96
  • Use 2. Of Instruction ibid.
  • Use 3. Matter of Thankful­ness Page 97
  • Use 4. Exhortation ibid. The way lies to Christ in four things ibid.
  • The End why the Saints receive all glorious Grace from Christ, is this, That they may be one, as the Father and Son are one Page 99
  • Two Questions answered. Page 99, 100
  • For the opening, do three things Page 102
    • 1 Recal what this oneness is. ibid.
    • 2 How this oneness, and glori­ous Grace differ ibid.
    • 3 The Reasons of the Point. ibid.
  • The choicest of all Graces ought in special manner to be im­proved Page 105, 106
  • Use 1. Of Reprehension Page 107
  • Use 2. Matter of great Com­fort ibid.
Verse 23. I in them, and thou in me, &c. 109
  • The words opened ibid.
  • Christ in special manner by his spiritual Presence, is in the Faithful Page 111
  • [Page]Three things here opened.
    • 1 In what respect Christ is said to be in his Page 111
    • 2 What kind of presence this is ibid.
    • 3 After what manner com­municated ibid.
  • Use 1. Caution to all, especi­ally to the wicked Page 117
  • Use 2. To desire the fellowship of the Faithful Page 118
  • Use 3. Tryal of our selves. ib.
  • Use 4. Shews the excellency of the Saints, in their meanest condition Page 122
  • Use 5. Matter of Comfort. Page 124
  • Use 6. Of Humiliation Page 125
  • Use 7. Of Admiration Page 126
  • Use 8. Of Exhortation ibid.
  • 1 To be affected with the pre­sence of such a Guest ibid.
  • 2 To entertain him suitably Page 127
  • This is performed in four things ibid.
  • Thou in me.
  • 1 The Father is in the Son. Page 129
  • 2 The subsistance of the Fa­ther in the Son, is the origi­nal whence the Saints come to be one with the Son, and the Father ibid.
  • The Nature of this, is opened in three things Page 130
    • 1 The ground whence this In­being proceeds ibid.
    • 2 The ready way to apprehend the Nature of it rightly ib.
    • 3 How it may be attended in our Savior, as God and Man ibid.
  • The first expressed in two Con­clusions ibid.
  • The second made good in four Particulars Page 131
  • Three things for Explication of the third Page 134
  • This manner of existing ap­pears in the Humane Na­ture in a three-fold regard, Viz. Of
  • Ʋnion.
  • Mission.
  • Operation. ib.
  • The In-being of the Father in the Son, is the first rise whence the Ʋnity of the faithful with the Father and the Son, is perfected. Page 137
  • The Doctrine opened ibid.
    • 1 Recal what this oneness is. Page 139
    • 2 How it's perfected ibid.
  • This Imperfection lies in three things Page 140
    • 1 In the unsoundness of our spi­rit ibid.
    • 2 Crossness to the power of the Spirit Page 141
    • 3 When the soul will joyn anything with Christ Page 142
  • [Page]Use 1. For Comfort Page 143
  • Use 2. For Exhortation Page 144
Ver. 23. That the world may know that thou hast sent me, and loved them, as thou lovest me. Page 145
  • The words contain a double end of this Dispensation. ib.
  • 1 That the world may know thou lovest me ibid.
  • 2 That thou lovest them as thou lovest me ibid.
  • Three Particulars to open. Page 146
  • The first opened, as chiefly in­tended Page 147
  • That passage of John, 3.35. The Father loveth the Son, is,
    • 1 Opened.
    • 2 The Reasons given
    • 3 The Ʋses propounded ibid.
  • Christs Love shews it self in three Particulars ibid.
  • Reasons upon which Love grows, are three Page 151
    • 1 Neerness.
    • 2 Likenest.
    • 3 Suitableness of worth. ibid.
  • Use 1. Of Reprehension Page 152
  • Use 2. Of Tryal Page 154
  • Use 3. Of Exhortation Page 155
  • God the Father loveth the Faithful, as he loveth Je­sus Christ. Page 156
  • Two things opened Page 158
    • 1 Wherein the love of the Fa­ther to the Saints, shews it self ibid.
    • 2 That it is like to that where­with he loved his Son ibid.
  • The first appears by three things ibid.
    • 1 Love of Ʋnion
    • 2 Complacence
    • 3 Benevolence ibid.
  • Quest. o [...] 2 Thes. 1.12.
  • Is there any Name higher than the Name of Christ Page 163
  • Answered by expounding the place ibid.
  • Use 1. Comfort to the Saints, because God loves them. Page 164
  • Use 2. Terror to those that hate them ibid.
  • Use 3. They are worthy our Love Page 165
  • The Father loves the Saints, as he loves his Son, proved in each particular ibid.
I. Instruction.
  • The sins of the faithful, are more grievous to God, than the sins of other persons Page 170
  • [Page]Instance in two Evils, unto which the Saints are usually subject Page 172
    • 1 To question Gods love ibid.
    • 2 To undervalue it ibid.
  • Object. Though God loves me, yet my grounds are weak Page 174
  • Answ. Gods love is above all Graces thou canst desire. ib.
2. Instruction.
  • Gods love to the Sainrs, is un­changeable Page 176
  • Use. Study to answer Gods love in manner and measure Page 178
  • That the world may know thou hast loved them, as thou lovst me. Page 180
  • A double end mentioned by our Savior ibid.
  • The first End ibid.
  • Two things noted from hence Page 181
    • 1 It is lawful to pray often for the same thing ibid.
    • 2 We ought to pray earnestly that the power of our Savior might be expressed Page 182
  • The Second End Page 183
  • Two Points in the words ib.
Quest. 1.
  • How wicked men can be truly said to know the love of God to Beleevers; which is a thing so secret, that is not of­tentimes made known to the Saints themselves Page 185
  • Answ. three-fold ibid.
Quest. 2.
  • Why do not the world know this in this life? Page 188
  • Answ. For a two-fold Reason ibid.
  • Use, 1. Of Patience Page 191
  • Use, 2. Of Exhortation Page 192
Verse 24. Father, I wil that those whom thou hast given me, be with me, &c. Page 194
  • Two things especially attended in this Prayer ibid.
  • We may attend four things in this Prayer Page 195
The General Observation.
  • It's the care of our Savior to seek for the welfare of his servants. Page 197
  • Use, 1. For Consolation Page 201
  • Use, 2. For Instruction Page 203
  • Use, 3. For Direction Page 204
  • The particular Scope Page 205
  • All Beleevers are given to Christ, by God the Fa­ther. Page 205
  • Two Questions for Explicati­on of this Doctrine, an­swered Page 206
  • Reason 1. ibid.
  • Reason 2. Page 211
  • Use, 1. For Information Page 213
  • The second Particular Page 214
  • Three Points observed especial­ly in it ibid.
  • Use, 1. Of Instruction Page 221
  • Use, 2. Of Assurance Page 222
  • Use, 3. To make us willing to die Page 323
  • Use, 4. To see the hainousness of rebellion against Christ in Glory Page 324
  • The words opened in four par­ticulars Page 325
  • Use, 1. Of Terror Page 332
  • Use 2. For Direction Page 333
  • Use, 3. For Comfort Page 334
The particulars of it.
  • 1 It cures all fears Page 335
  • 2 Supplies al wants
  • 3 Rescues from Enemies
  • 4 Removes guilt of sin
  • 5 Strengthens all Graces
  • 6 Quickens all Duties
  • 7 Gives Eternal Life
  • All proved severally.
  • Use, 4. For Instruction Page 342
  • The eternal Glory of Christ, is a gift of the eternal love of the Father Page 344
  • Two things opened
    • 1 What is meant by this love Page 345
    • 2 How this love is the cause of Glory ibid.
  • Reason 1 Page 348
  • Use, 1. For Tryal Page 350
  • Use, 2. For Comfort Page 353
  • Use, 3. Of Direction ibid.
Doctrine from the Second Particular
  • Our Savior doth desire to have the faithful in Heaven with himself. Page 354
  • Three Reasons Page 356
  • Use, 1. Of Instruction Page 358
  • Use, 2. Of Reprehension Page 359
  • Use, 3. Of spiritual Comfort Page 360
  • Use, 4. Of Exhortation Page 362
    • 1 What hinders Page 363
    • 2 What helps this Ʋnion. Hindrances are three ib.
  • Helps are three Page 364
  • The third Particular is, That they might see his Glory. Page 365
  • The happiness of our being in Heaven to see Christs Glory Page 366
  • Three things to be enquired
    • 1 What this Glory is Page 368
    • 2 What it is to see it ibid.
    • 3 How the sight of this glory brings happiness ibid.
  • For the second Enquiry, con­sider
    • 1 What his beholding im­plies Page 370
    • 2 The manner how it is done ibid.
  • This manner appears in three things Page 371
  • To the third Particular, a dou­ble Reason propounded Page 376
    • Use, 1. Of Instruction Page 379
    • Use, 2. To Examine Page 380
    • Use, 3. Of Direction Page 381 Means are three ibid.
Verse 25, 26. The Verse contains the close of our Saviors Prayer Page 383.
  • 1 A description of the Person to whom be praies Page 384
  • 2 The Prayer it self, wherein are four Particulars ibid.
  • Two Points considerable
    • 1 We must look unto Gods ex­cellency, whence we may re­ceive what we pray for Page 388
    • 2 God in faithfulness dispenseth his fatherly Love to us Page 390
  • Two things opened
    • 1 Wherein Gods faithfulness consists ibid.
    • 2 The reason why be thus dis­penseth his love ibid.
  • Use, 1. For Instruction Page 392
  • Use, 2. Consolation Page 393
  • Use, 3. Reproof Page 394
  • II. The Prayer it self Page 395
  • The wicked know not the Fa­therly love of God Page 396
  • Obj. Learned men that have studied this point, may be ig­norant of it Page 397
  • Answ. four waies Page 398
  • The Sum of all in brief Page 399
  • Reas. 1. Gods secrets must be discerned by Gods Spirit Page 402
  • Use, 1. Of Instruction Page 404
  • Use, 2. Of Terror Page 405
  • Object. I hope I have somwhat more than the world Page 407
  • Answ. By the way to try it ib.
  • The disposition of our Savior, and the Saints towards God, is wholly cross to the world Page 408
  • Three Reasons Page 409
  • Use, 1. Of Instruction Page 413
  • Use, 2. Examination Page 416
  • [Page]O righteous Father, &c. Page 418
  • The words opened ibid.
  • The Lord Christ hath the knowledge of the Father in a peculiar manner Page 420
  • Three things opened
    • 1 How Christ as second Person is said to know the Father Page 422
    • 2 How man comes to share in this kn [...]wledg ibid.
    • 3 The Reason of it ibid.
  • The Saints have a special knowledg, that the Lord Christ is sent of God the Father for their salvati­on Page 431
  • Three things open'd
    • 1 How Christ is said to be sent of the Father Page 432
    • 2 For what he is sent ibid.
    • 3 How the Saints know this in special manner ibid.
  • Propositions to make way for the first thing Page 433
  • The second thing Page 439
    • Use, 1. Matter of Admiration Page 440
    • Use, 2. Comfort Page 441
  • The third thing to be enquired of two waies Page 442
    • 1 Wherein the specialty of this knowledge consists ibid.
    • 2 How it comes to be commu­nicated to the Saints ibid.
  • 1 The specialty of knowledg consists in four things ib.
  • Quest. Is this the condition of all the Saints? Page 450
  • Answ. affirmatively: for the matter, but not for the man­ner and measure ibid.
  • Object. We see by experience, that may of Gods own are ignorant here ibid.
  • Answ. They know in part, or know by reflection ibid.
  • Two Reasons of the Point ib.
  • Use, 1. Of Thankfulness Page 451
  • Use, 2. Of Examination Page 452
Ver 26 I have made known thy Name &c. Page 454
  • Two things to be here attended
    • 1 Our Saviors Work Page 455
    • 2 His Engagement ibid.
  • Doct. To make known the name of the Father to an humbled soul, is our Saviors peculiar work ibid.
  • Three things opened
    • 1 What this Name is Page 456
    • 2 What it is make it known
    • 3 why this is properly given to our Savior ibid.
  • Doct. Christ extends the same care at al times to al his ser­vants Page 4 [...]5
  • [Page]Reason Page 466
  • Use, 1. Of Instruction Page 467
  • Use, 2. Of Comfort Page 468
  • Use, 3. Direction Page 470
  • Use, 4. Exhortation Page 472
  • Two Points of Doctrine
    • Doct. 1. There is much wanting in the ful knowledg &c. Page 476
    • Two things to be enquired
      • 1 In what this want appears
      • 2 The Reasons why Page 478
    • Use 1 Instruction Page 482
    • Use 2 Direction Page 485
    • Doct. 2. The Lord lends day­ly Directions, &c. Page 486 Attend two things
      • 1 The Measure ibid.
      • 2 The Manner. ibid.
  • Many Collections hence
    • Col. 1 The best Saints here, live on dayly dependance on these things Page 489
    • Col. 2 Christ can cloud al our knowledg Page 492
    • Col. 3 The faithful must en­crease in knowledg Page 494
    • Col. 4 Christ is the way to lead us to the Father Page 496
    • Col. 5 Matter of abasement of heart ibid.
    • Col 6 Ground of thankful­ness Page 497
    • Col. 7 Ground of Comfort Page 498
  • Use. Exhortation Page 500
  • The Close of Christs Prayer,
  • That the Love wherewith thou hast loved me, &c. Page 501
  • For understanding of which words, observe four things.
    • 1 How the Father loves Christ ibid.
    • 2 How that love is said to be in them ibid.
    • 3 The means how ibid.
    • 4 The time when we shall know this ibid.
  • Three Points of Doctrine,
    • Doct. 1. It is Christs desire, that the dearest of Gods love, &c. Page 511
    • Use, 1 Reprehension Page 517
    • Use, 2 Instruction Page 518
    • Doct. 2. Our union and com­munion with God in Christ, is the top of our happiness in Heaven Page 521
  • Two things opened
    • 1 What this haypiness of Hea­ven is Page 522
    • 2 How this is the top of it ibid.
  • Use, 1 Matter of Admiration Page 530
  • Use, 2 Examination Page 531

MR HOOKER'S Seventeenth Book Made in NEW-ENGLAND.

JOHN, 17.20.

I Pray not for these alone: but for them also who shall beleeve on me through their word.

IN this 17. Chapter: We have a most heavenly prayer of our Savior, ex­pressed immediately before his depar­ture hence, which I suppose he pre­sents to the Father, not as a man, or yet Minister of the Circumcision, unto whom he was sent, but as Mediator, & is part of that Inter­cession, which he performeth in the behalf of his Church and people. And being now shortly to offer up himself, and to lay down his life for his Children, and to go out of the World, (as though his soul had been transported into the Suburbs of Heaven, as though he would un­bowel [Page 2]his dearest and heart-blood desires into the bosom of his Father) he sends this prayer before-hand in the power of his Intercession, to lie leidger there in the be­half of his Disciples and faithful ones, that so he might fully provide for their everlasting life and spiritual wel­fare, before he left his own life, and provide comfort in Heaven to be sent down to them, before he left the Earth, and went to Heaven.

A Prayer of unconceiveable and incomparable worth, above al that ever was expressed or recorded in the word: Like a confection or compound of those soveraigne ex­cellencies; beyond the highest strayn of the desires or conceivings of the souls of the Saints.

That which containes the quintessence or the pith of al the cordialls of the Gospel; the very marrow of al that great redemption, he had wrought and purchased: the highest pitch of al that happiness, which Heaven can afford, or the very richest Diamond in the crown of Glory: for that we may see, he here prayes for some­thing beyond glory, that for which glory was made, and therefore better than glory it self, for so the words: I have given them my Glory, that they may be one, as we are one. So that that is the end of Glory, and there­fore better than Glory, able to carry the heart beyond al the riches of admiration.

This is expressed in the parts of it according to the parties for whom it is made, and those are two.

  • 1 For himself to vers. 6.
  • 2 For his ser­vants and those
    • His Apostles. ver. 6. to ver. 20.
    • The rest of Beleevers.

Hence generally for our imitation and direction, learn from our Savior.

1. That the first especial scope of Prayer should be for such things that do more especially concern us.

Whether it be in regard of any thing which respects [Page 3]the Glory of God, the furtherance of his truth, or the good and benefit of such, whose conditions or relations do most neerly touch us; for thus Prayer serves the end best, for which it is appointed by God, and for which it should be used by us, to help forward the occasions that be under our hands: Prayer is like the passing boat of the Ferry, it helps al Travellers, but it attends them next, that come first; So it was with Jacob, it plyed God for the particular, and especially where the pinch lay, Gen. 32.10.11. So Eleazar, good Lord make it hit right to day. Gen. 24.12. And it seems it was that which God complaines of Isa. 64. At least he con­demnes in Josuah, that his hand was in the wrong box. Jos. 7.10. quorsum hoc? not that he fasted, but that he searched nor, examined not the sin, and sought not the reformation of that which indeed did especially con­cern him.

The present work done, want to be supplied, the way of Providence furthered. Here is our prick and mark at which our prayers should aim, we must not shoot at rovers, Prayer like a Skilful Physitian, studies the cure of al diseases, but administers a receipt to him, whose necessities present themselves.

2. Prayers must be of a speeding nature so to attend per­sons or things of present necessity, as to reach al in a right order. So David Psal. 50.2. last. Paul brings in al Churches within the compass of his care and of his prayers. I make mention alwayes of you; and of you al in my prayers, and this almost in al his Epistles. Pray­er is like the blood and spirits which pass through the whol body of Christ, and hath its conveyance even into the least member and joynt. Like a Pinnace of dispatch, that gives intelligence from each quarter.

The Subjects of our Saviors Prayer are set forth, two wayes.

  • 1 From their quality and special effect, they shal be­leeve: and that from the generality of the
    • Object, in Me.
    • Time, Hereafter.
    • Instrument by which it shal be wrought, by their word.
  • 2. From a comparison of equality or parity. i. e. Christ prayes not alone for the Apostles, but equally, but indifferently, for al, as wel as they.

For Explication, there is nothing difficult but that: what is meant by their word.

That is the Gospel, which they published by preach­ing, or left upon record in writing, as they were in­spired by the spirit: The Lord Christ providing there­in for the good of his Church, unto the end of the world, that so they might have the path of life paved out before them, and a certain rule to guid them, until the end of the world. Not that none did formerly beleeve by the word of the Prophets in the Old Testament, for even then also the Gospel was preached, Gal. 3.8. Preach­ed the Gospel to Abraham, in thy seed shal all the Nati­ons of the Earth be blessed. The word was preached to them, as wel as to us, and it was a word of promise Heb. 4.1.2. And therefore the Apostle professed, He preached no other things, but what were contained and expressed in the law and the Prophets. Acts, 26.22. the Prophets and Moses did say, should come; the Prophets foretold, in the Types was prefigured, and in the Covenant expressed, in Genesis promised. So that this their word is opposed to two things.

  • 1. Ʋnto the Law, which is our Schoolmaster, to whip us unto Christ, but is not able, either to declare him to us, or to work faith in us. Its that which onely makes way for faith, but is not that seed, whereof faith is made and begotten: and therefore when it was said, Faith comes by hearing and the word, Rom. 10.17. if ye look into vers. 15. foregoing, ye shal see what word is meant: How beautiful are the feet of those that [Page 5]bring the Gospel of peace?
  • 2. It is opposed to al the Doctrines of men, al humane devices, al unwritten traditions, al conceited revelations which are nothing but Satanical delusions; in which there is no power to beget faith, no ground to sup­port it.

We have here two points.

The word of the Gospel is the onely ordinary means to work Faith.Doct.

It was not onely then, when the Apostles were prea­ching and planting, not onely there and in those coasts, where the sound of the Gospel was Glorious and Fa­mous: But whoever did then, and whoever shal be­leeve, unto the end of the world [...] for After-times, in al ages, and in al places, in an ordinary course of Gods dispensations, (leaving secret exceptions, or miracu­lous proceedings in the privy purpose of his counsel) there never was, nor shal be any under the power of Christs prayer, or possessed with the truth of saving Faith, but by this meanes, and this onely.

He prayes for no other than bel [...]vers, he wil own none, save none, but such. And therefore none but such have saving Faith. And that is the reason, why the Gospel is set in opposition to the law: Rom. 10.5. compared with vers. 9. The word of Faith is that which is neer unto us. Hence its called the Ministration of life and power. 2 Cor. 3. When the Law is said to be weak, through the infirmity of our flesh, Rom. 8.3. and not able to give life, Gal. 3.21.

Reason, 1.

Because the Gospel alone reveales that which may satisfy our spiritual necessities, and answer the ex­pectation [Page 6]of our faith, and the desires of our Souls: upon the sense and feeling of those evils, which as unsupport­able, would otherwise sink them, This is the Argument the Apostle gives, Rom. 1.16. I am not ashamed of the Gospel of God; For it is the power of God unto Salva­tion: and why? Because by it the righteousness of God is revealed, from faith to faith. i. e. from one degree of faith unto another.

A man is unrighteous, and possessed of the power and presence of it, and under the hand of revenging justice by reason of the same.

And where may a righteousness be found, which may answer the necessities of the Soul? the Law never dis­covered this, the creatures never heard of it, the wis­dome of man could never reach it, nay the excellency of all the knowledg of all Angels was never able to devise: but Christ who came out of the Bosome of the Father, hath wrought this righteousness and by the Gospel hath brought life and Immortality to light (2 Tim. 1.10.) which otherwise had never seen light, and therefore it is, that the glad tidings of peace is said to come this way, and is not to be heard from any other coast. Tydings of evil come, like Jobs Messengers from every quarter, tidings we heare from the law, are nothing but threatnings and wrath, ready to condemn us: tidings from our own hearts are nothing but guilt and fear, to terrifie and arrest us: tidings from Hell are yet worse, there be nothing but accusations subtil and Malicious, and those present us, at home and abroad, in Earth and in Hea­ven at Gods Tribunal, and require present execution to be done upon such undeserving creatures. Onely, the glad tidings come from the Gospel.

Jesus Christ came to save sinners. This is a faithful word and worthy of al acceptance and therefore the Soul looks out and saies, It may be. This keeps the Head above Water.

Reason. 2.

Here, in the Gospel only is certainty to be had of some interest and special Title; whereby the Soul may be encouraged, and faith also find some foot-hold, where­by the heart may bottom and bear up it self in some confidence. For righteousness there is to be had from God in Christ: but this Issues only (in the communica­tion of it) from free mercy. The Lord may do with his own what he will; and therefore he may deny whom he wil, and give to whom he please; how then shal I know, and have any ground or evidence, upon any certainty that he wil do good to me? God is bound to none.

True. God is bound to none further then he will bind himself; and he binds himself in no wise to the creature, but by his promise, and that he wil never deny, who cannot deny himself. Now in the Gospel only this promise and ingagement of God is revealed, he hath promised to work the condition, and then tied himself in his truth to do good to those, whom he wil so fit for his mercy. And now the Soul upon this notice grows in upon God, here is a handle, as it were, for faith to lay hold on, therefore said a word of promise, Rom. 9.9. and therefore the whole Gospel is called the promise. Gal. 3.29. Beleevers are said to be the Children of the promise, that is, of the Gospel.

Reason. 3.

The Gospel is the only means, whereby the Soul is in­abled, with power from above, even with a Spirit of Grace f [...] to go for succour and reliefe; where it is thus evidenced, and whence it hath now received some inti­mation of Gods ingagement, intendment and so of cer­tainty, by which it may be incouraged to go upon such [Page 8]grounds, as will never fail nor break under a man. That he may go stedily and comfortably 2. Cor. 3.6. Its said to be the administration of the Spirit. Not of the Letter; that is, there is not Barely a discovery and mani­festation of what Gods mind and counsel is, that should be done; such the sense and meaning of words and sentences may descry, set out, and hold forth. But there is a Spirit of power, that is promised, and so dispensed and conveyed in and by this word, for to in­able the Soul to do that, which the Letter shews it should do; Gods saying is doing, his calling is making: he speaks not only to the ear, but conveyes a power by speaking. Lazaruscome forth. The dead shall hear. John. 5.25. Gal. 3.3. Received ye the Spirit (even this Spirit) by the preaching of the Law, or by the Doctrin of faith?

This is the word by which God begets us. Jam. 1.18. If in the Gospel there be that freeness of Grace, that is sufficient to answer all the necessities and desires of the Heart: certainty of promise to incourage it, if it shal come, and power and Spirit to inable it for to come: Then, The word of the Gospel is the only meanes to work faith.

Use. 1. Of Terror.

This discovers the woeful and miserable condition of such, who want this Gospel: But especially the hainousness of the sin, and the dreadful condemnation of such, who Oppose the Gospel. God hath shut up al under unbelief, in the Kingdom of darkness under the power of the Prince of darkness: they look out as pri­soners through the Grates of Hell, and Infidelity; there is no possibility to help to a Key to open this Dore, but the Key of the Gospel; they wilfully keep the Dore bolted, and refuse the only help, which the Lord hath provided, Christ hath purchased with his Blood, ap­pointed [Page 9]and sanctified by his spirit, and doth promise to accompany for their deliverance, yea this they oppose. This was the doom and sentence which Paul passed upon them, Act. 13.46. Ye judg your selves unworthy of ever­lasting life, by putting away the word: Thou stoppest thine ear at the glad tidings of it, shuttest thine eyes at the righteousness thereof, Puttest by and castest away, withdrawest thy soul from under the prevailing power of that word.

Know: Thou needest no Devil to accuse, no witness to evidence, no Judg to condemn, thy practise doth judg thy self unworthy, unfit to receive Grace, who resistest it; to share in mercy, who despisest it; or to in­joy eternal life, who hast rejected the offer of eternal life. So Paul again sent those away with their load, when they refused to hear. Act. 28.26.

Use, 2. Instruction and Comfort.

Therefore this word of the Gospel shal undoubtedly be preserved and published, and that until the end of the world; as long as the Lord Christ hath any to be gathered, any of his to be brought home to himself by a saving Faith. They shal beleeve by this, therefore they shal have this, maugre al the malice, the power and policy of Hel, the rage and restless opposition of al the instruments of Satan. That word cannot be falsefied, This Prayer cannot be frustrated, and therefore, This work cannot be hind [...]ed. Seem it never so improbable, never so impossible in our Eyes, and feeble apprehensions Measure not the power and Faithfulness and wisdom of the Lord, by the scantling of our shallow apprehensions: but know, he hath said it, and he wil doe it.

The fan is in his hand, not in any mans hand. Its said of the Apostles their sound went through the world. They are compared to the course of the Sun, in his Sphoere and Orb. So it wil be with his messenger, when [Page 10]it is his mind to cal any of his. His Doctrine is as the dew, no man can hinder it from falling; Either the means to the man, or the man to the means he wil send: Onesi­mus his theft shal bring him to prison, and so to Pauls ministery, and so to Heaven: Naaman must go to be cured of his Leprosy, and so meets with the Prophet to cure him of his sin. Philip is sent post to the Eunuches Coach, though it was in an extraordinary way.

Use, 3. Examination.

Know whether our Faith be of the right make or no. Ask whence came it? where hadst thou thy Faith? by what word? If it came the right way, It came by preaching the Gospel.

It wil shew thee,

  • 1. Thou hadst once none.
  • 2. That thou art not able to beleeve.

Jam 1.18. By bis own good wil begat be us, by the word of truth.

If thou canst say; I heard thus and thus of a Christ, and so I beleeved: then it is in thy wil to beleeve, not in Gods wil that begets thee. 3. It wil shew thee, that Faith is made of the immortal Seed of the word, 1 Pet. 1.23. that is the Spirit in the promise; That as a man is made up of the Seed which enters his con­stitution: so made up of promises. Hither belongs that of Eph. 5.30. We are Flesh, of his Flesh, and Bone, of his Bone. i. e. As the woman was made of the Rib of Adam: So Faith hath its flesh and bones out of the promise: and the root of it is in Christ, for the first strok of it.

Use, 4. Exhortation.

Therefore In the want of Faith; bring our own Souls, bring our Wives and little ones, and beseech the Lord, that one word may be spoken to them, to beleeve and Live.

The means or instrument whereby Sinners are brought to beleeve was the word. That is finished.

2 The Parties Faith was set forth from the object of it. ME. Beleeve in Christ.

Saving Faith hath the Lord Jesus for its object.Doct.

So the text. Though not him alone, to exclude the other Persons, so not them alone, to exclude himself. Ye beleeve in God; beleeve also in me. That ye beleeve in the Father is not enough, ye must beleeve also in the Son, and by like reason in the Holy Ghost. Joh. 14.1. This is eternal life (faith our Savior) to know thee, the onely true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent. i. e. To beleeve in the Father and Son, is that onely means appointed to bring in eternal life.

The Second thing is.

The Parties for whom Christ prayers are here set forth by a Comparison of equality and parity. I pray not for my Apostles alone, who are the main Pillars of the Church, & now to be sent upon the most weighty im­ployments, that can be committed to the hands of f [...]e [...]le men, to publish the Gospel to every creature, to plant Churches, and to gather mine elect from al the corners of the world; notwithstanding al the opposition they shal find from Hel, and fierce persecution they shal meet withal, from the hands of unreasonable men. And therefore since the work lyes first upon their hands, and requires present performance, and so have need present­ly to be remembred, and to have the first place in my prayer.

Yet my love and care reacheth proportionably, even to al the meanest and feeblest of my servants, that shal be­leeve in me, unto the end of the world: though they come in the second rank, yet shal they share alike in [Page 12]my prayers. For I pray for them, as for these. That they may know, I remembred them before they were: and wil not therefore forget them, when they shal be here in the conflicting times, upon the face of the Earth.

The Interceding Prayer, or Intercession of our Savior doth alike respect al, that shal beleeve in his name.Doct.

I cal it here an Interceding Prayer, because herein his Intercession is in a special manner both expressed and accomplished. For it is not to be attended as a pray­er which he put up, as man alone, or as the minister of the Circumcision, as the Apostle calls him. Rom. 15.8. For then it can avail no further, then the prayer of a man without sin will do: and answerable to that kind of willing. Math. 23.37. How often would I have gathered them &c.

But its here the special work of Intercession, and proceeds from him, as God and man, Mediator of his elect and faithful, and so Intercession in their behalf: That being (as I told you) shortly to offer up himself, he sends his prayer, as the great high Priest of his Church, in power of his Intercession, to lie Leidger there in the behalf of his beloved Children, that he might provide in Heaven for them, before he lest the Earth. And this prayer is part of that Intercession he now puts sorth, at the right Hand of the Father. So that the Sum in short is.

Christs Intercession was intended for all beleevers alike.

Hence are al these general and indefinite expressions, as [Page 13]carrying an equal Eye unto all, without any Special restraint to any particular, of what quality or condition soever. Heb. 7.25. He is able to save them that came unto God by him; (i.e. Who beleeve in him) seeing he ever liveth to make Intercession for them. i. e. For any of them, for every one of them, that shall beleeve. And therefore it was, when the high Priest was to go into the Holy of Holies, he was to bear the names of the twelve Tribes upon his Breast-plate i.e. The names of all the Saints, which should profess the Faith, and by Faith beleeve in him. And it is the condition of the great work of our Redemption, it carries no respect of persons with it (provided they be under the condition and terms of the covenant) it lies open unto all.

That which Jude spake of Salvation, its true of the whole work of Mediation and Intercession, Common Salvation: Common Intercesson. In Christ Jesus, nor Jew, nor Gentile, Graecian, nor Barbarian, Bond nor Free, Male nor Female. So that of Paul Rom. 5. If reconciled by his Death, when sinners; much more shall we be saved by his life, being reconciled. If the death of our Saviour could purchase our Reconciliation; much more shal his life (now interceding in Heaven) be able to save us, i.e. All for whom he died.

I shall open here.

  • 1 The Nature and manner of this Intercession.
  • 2 The works and vertue of it.
  • 3 The reasons of the point, why it appertaines to all the Saints.

1 This Intercession, or the manner of our Saviors praying must thus be conceived: that he doth present his merits & obedience before the Father as fully performed in the behalf of his elect, and (according to the righte­ous covenant and agreement past between them) doth challenge the communication of al that spiritual good he hath purchased, and the Father hath promised to bestow upon them. That is the meaning of that ex­pression [Page 14]in ver. 24. Father I will, that those whom thou hast given me, be where I am, that they may beh [...]ld my Glory. It is my good pleasure, that they should enjoy that happiness, that thou hast given me. and given to them, in me, according as thou hast promised.

2. The work of this Intercession is.

To act all our affayrs with God the Father, to further our comfort & spiritual wellfare here on Earth, until we come to him in Heaven, and to shal have an end of al our wants, feares, and desires; that we shall want nothing that is good, [...]o [...] sear any thing that is evil, nor desire any further or more perfect good to be added, which is ab [...]ent from us: but he takes care, al shal be fully accomlished. As it is with States, who have Affayre [...] or great consequences, depen­ding in other countries, they have their Ambassadors, which ly Leidger at Court, to take advantages to con­tinue Love and honourable Correspondence betwixt the King and States, and to discover all undermining Plots, which my breed any distast, and so procure no smal dammage to those who do imploy them. So it is with our Savior, he is gone to Heaven, and there re­maines a Leidger with God the Father, that he may observe, and take al such Special advantages, for acom­plishment of the comforts of his.

Quest. If you ask; What be those Spiritual affayres of ours, there to be transacted?

Answ. They appear in three Particulars.

1. Our Savior being in highest Honor and favor in the Court of Heaven, and of most perfect intelligence touching all the counsels, purposes, and proceedings of the Father: He there speaks good unto God the Father, in our behalf dayly: sets on going al the passages of Providence, in justice, and mercy, grace, and Truth, [Page 15]Patience and Bounty, as may best answer al the occa­sions of the Churches, in al their conditions, as may most concern them: And answerably sends an express by the powerful operation of his good Spirit, into the Hearts of his people. So verse. 11. Keep them through thin own name. Joh. 16.15. All things that the Fa­ther hath, are mine, therefore said I, that he shal take of mine. Christ hath liberty to take of all the choicest of the Treasures of Heaven, and those he doth, and sends them by the spirit unto the Hearts of his people. Joh. 14.16. I will pray the Father and he shal give you ano­ther Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever. Thus our Saviour doth us many secret kindnesses, which we little consider: and sends privy Intimation, how things go in Heaven in our behalf.

2. He stands betwixt us and our Harms by these his prayers and Intercession, and if there by any evil plotted, or intended against us, or hurt coming to us, he foresees it, and way-laies it, that it may not be to our prejudice in any particular. The guilt of new sins daily com­mitted, fresh accusations of conscience, new pleas which Satan the accuser of the Brethren would dayly com­mence and put up unto divine justice against us.

Our Saviour, he is our Advocate, undertakes our cause; pleads for us, and prevailes: gives in so ful satis­faction unto divine Juctice, that neither sin, nor world, nor Satan, can be heard against us. These sins have been committed, these dishonors done, these evils practised, saies Satan, and the world can witness, and their own consciences. Yea saies divine Justice: Their Advocate hath been here, hath plainly and truly related all these; they are not new, and hath fully answered and satisfied to the utmost that can be exacted. Rom. 8.34. Here is the ground of the Apostles Triumph: Who is he that condemneth? it is Christ that died, nay makes Intercession for us. So that there is neither condemna­tion nor accusation that can get any hearing against them, [Page 16]for they are al before discovered▪ and answered: the Lord Christ hath intelligence of their intendments, and disappoints them wholly.

3. He intercepts all our prayers and performances, which we tender up unto God, and perfumes them with the sweet Odors of the incense of his own Intercession, and so they find acceptance, and make a pleasant savor in the Nostrils of the Almighty. As it is with brackish Water, which comes from the Sea, passing through some precious Gold or Silver Mines, it becomes, not only sweet and purified, but of Soveraign vertue and tast. So it is with our services, being brackish with many base distempers, which cleave to them and us, be­ing intercepted by the Intercession of our Saviour, and passing through the Rich mines of his Merits and obedi­ence, they prove marvailous pleasing and acceptable to the Lord. Rev. 8.3. The prayers of the Saints are offered up, upon the Golden Altar of our Saviors pre­cious Merits. As an Advocate in the Court, if any of his Clients commend their cause to ska [...]ning, though they be weak and unskilful, yet he can ripen them, and being Rectified, present them so ordered, as that they may find acceptance with the Lord, through the in­fluence of this Application of the vertue of his Merits.

3 The Reasons are three.

  • 1. Because our Savior Christ hath indifferently un­dertaken the Salvation of al his Children: and there­fore out of his faithfulness it cannot be, but he should indifferently attain the accomplishment of it, in the be­half of them. This was the Covenant and Agreement betwen God the Father and Christ. Those that the Father in his counsel determined, he commended them all unto the care of our Savior, and gave him the list, as it were of their names, that he should look, that none of them miscarry: Our Saviour did freely under­take [Page 17]that charge, for al those so committed to his care: and therefore for al, must discharge that trust alike. Joh. 6.37.38, 39, 40. All that the Father giveth me, shal come to me &c. For I came down from Heaven, not to do mine own wil, but the wil, of him that sent me. And this is the wil of the Father, that of al which he hath given me, I should lose none. And this is his wil, that he that seeth and beleeveth should have everlasting life &c. And he professeth he was faithful herein. Joh. 10.14, 15, 16. I am the good Shepherd: I lay down my life &c. And I have other Sheep, and they must come. And therefore when he hath gathered al his elect, and brought in his tally, Here am I, and the Children thou hast given me, He shall then resign up the Kingdom to the Father.
  • 2 Because this is common to all alike. The whole work of redemption is common to al that must be redeemed. But this is one part: Ex [...]tation, answer­able to his humiliation, Rom. 4. and the last. The whole sum is every mans. Its called the common Sal­vation. Joh. 16, 8, 10. This is a convincing of the world of righteousness, because I go to the Father. Els it had not been complete righteousness.
  • 3 Because its necessary alike unto al. Rom. 5.10. How much more shall we be saved by his life? Heb. 7.25. He lives that he may save perfectly. The Application is as necessary, as the Redemption. There is the vertue of his death and merits to purchase life; And then, the vertue of his Intercession to apply it: to continue, and perpetuate the vigour and vertue of it.

If Christ hath undertaken for all alike. If it be com­mon unto all: If it be alike needful for all: Then its that which Christ intends to al his.

Use 1 for Instruction.

Its impossible for a beleever to perish, to loose his Grace, to fal away, either totally, or finally from Christ, [Page 18]and so to be deprived in the Issue of eternal life. I Rea­son thus;

That which our Savior died for, prayed for, and doth now make Intercession in Heaven for that, he can never fail to attain.

But for the perseverance of the Saints, and for their everlasting Salvation, he died, and he did Pray, and doth pray at this day for.

Therefore he cannot but attain his end, and they al­so their happiness.

So he professeth, and hath left it upon record, to establish the Faith of al His, in their greatest shocks. Joh 11.41, 42. Father, I thank thee, that thou hast heard me; And I knew that thou hearest me al­waies &c. Christ hath here proclaimed it, we may conclude, and that undoubtedly, that which he knows, who could not be deceived: we may know it for a truth, and that it wil never deceive us. Christ is ever heard, and therefore the Saints shal alwaies be assisted, sup­ported, inabled to be faithful to the end, and in the end. If Christ may not be heard, then thou maiest not be helped: and if he wil loose his prayer, then thou maiest loose thy comfort and grace. But that is incredible, this is impossible.

Besides how dishonorable is this Doctrine of falling away, unto the Lord Jesus, and the work of his Media­tion, which in the Issue advanceth the power of our sin, and the policy of Satan, above the vertue of the death of Christ, and the power of the prayer of Christ; For it saith thus much: That the policy of Satan is more able to undermine us, than his prayer to preserve us: His temptation to destroy us, than the Intercession of Christ to save us.

No, Be the assaults never so fierce, the allurements never so subtil, corruptions never so strong, Nay let all the power of Darkness do the worst. The prayer of [Page 19]Christ wil yet shore up the meanest Saint in the greatest safety: Luk. 22.32. Satan hath desired to winnow (he would have winnowed all the Grace out of his Heart, but our Savior he made provision for him, and con­cludes) but I have prayed, that thy Faith fail not, and there leaves it, as though there was not then the least shadow or fear of any miscarriage. For it might have been said: may be, Satan wil be too hard, not only for my Grace, but for thy prayer: No, our Savior leaves it beyond al question, for its so far from any appearance of probability, that the thought of it is no less than blasphemy.

Use 2 for Direction:

To take heed, how we deal injuriously, or carry our selves offensively towards the meanest beleever: Be his place never so low, his condition never so base, his a­bilityes never so feeble and despicable in thine Eye: The prayer of Jesus is to preserve them from evil, and therefore wil be against thee, who intendest to do evil against them. It was the Argument of our Savior; Math. 18.10. Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones: for I tel you, that in Heaven their Angels do alwaies behold the face of my Father which is in Heaven. If this was a reason of force, as no question it is, that they should not despise those, whose Guardians are the glorious Angels, the Special Attendants at the Court of Heaven: How much more that the Son of God doth pray dayly for them, who is far above al principalities and powers, and advanced at Gods right Hand.

Use 3.

Consolation unspeakeable and glorious, even to the meanest of the Saints; when they are beset with greatest [Page 20]enemies, and that in greatest necessities, and most un­able to succor themselves: know there is support that will never fail thee. Thy sins plead against thee; 1 Joh. 2.1, 2. Here is an Advocate, who pleads for thee, and wil undoubtedly carry the cause. Thy con­science that accuseth, Satan he condemnes; But they al come too late: There is one between them and home, who intercedes and makes perfect satisfaction, and also ful communication thereof: therefore Paul flings the gantlet. May be thy Heart and prayers and life and al seem to fail thee: Here is one, who lives alwaies and prayes alwaies, and is heard alwaies; and therefore able to save to the uttermost, them that come.

Object. True, happy they who have a share in that Intercession: but so sinful a creature, so silly a wretch, so loathsom an one as I? unworthy that Christ should ever have me in his thoughts, much less should ever pray for me.

Answ. Yes, for thee, if thou hast but Faith as a grain of Mustard-seed: not only for Peter: for his Apostles: but for thee, silly Woman, Ignorant Child &c.

Use 4.

TERROR. This is a thunderbolt to break the heart, and Split the hopes of al worldlings under Heaven.

Doth then thy conversation witness? doth thine own heart confess it? That,

The day is yet to dawn, the hour yet to come, that ever God spake to thy Soul, or plucked thee out of the world, As thou were't, thou art: of the Earth, and speakest of the Earth, in the old course, and led aside with old lusts;

Know thou must, Christ hath shut thee out of his Prayrs, and thy Soul out of peace, and self out of Heaven, for ought any living can tel: and I do not say, how [Page 21]sleepest thou, but how canst thou live, and hear and know this thy condition. That thou dost not sit down in silence, and thy Soul sink and die away within thee in everlasting discouragement, in the expectation of evil, that hangs over thy Head? and have thy life hang in doubt, that when thou goest our, thou shouldest never return, and when thou liest down, thou shouldest never rise up again? Why? there is nothing to hinder, but the hand of Justice should plague, and nothing to stay it: Thy sins and Devils to make a prey and spoil of thee, and nothing to hinder it.

Bear not up thy self with the Opinion of others, or their approbation, how their Hearts are to thee, and how wel they speak of thee. But know; The Heart of Christ he hath discovered it, and professed it, He prays not for the world, nor for thee, if one of them. Do not deceive thy self, nor suffer Satan to delude thee with vain pretences, That notwithstanding thy sins and de­serts, yet there is redemption wrought by Christ: vertue and Salvation in the Blood of Jesus: He died for sinners, and his Death is able to redeem; because Salvation is laid upon one that is mighty:

True, that is thy misery: There is enough to be had, but he never suffered any thing, did any thing, intended any thing, nay purposed to speak a good word for thee: but to leave thee to shift for thy self, to the hand of Justice to plague, to the hand of Devils to torment, to the hand of thy sins, to rule & damn thee. And he profes­seth, he would not spend his breath, much less his Blood: I think thou hast thy load, though I could yet lay it heavier. Hy thee for thy life out of the compass and company of the world, if ever thou wouldest be within the power of the prayer of Christ to thine own know­ledg.

Use 5, Exhortation to beleevers;

To have our hearts ravished and our thoughts swal­lowed [Page 22]up with everlasting admiration of this indeared love of the Lord Jesus to such poor creatures: That he should provide and reserve the rarities of the Riches of his Grace for such miserable, worthless Worms. As Philip in the like case.

Why wilt thou shew thy self to us, and not unto the world? why pray for us, speak, intercede for us in Heaven, and not for the world? when there be so many wise, Rich, honorable, that thou never intendest any good unto, nor ever put test them within one sentence of thy prayer? Lord, who am I, silly Woman, Ignorant Child, diso­bedient, rebellious servant, that yet thou shouldest cal me out of the world, and make it thy great work in Heaven, to keep me in the world, and bring me to Heaven?

What wil you do, to honor this Christ, who hath thus honored you: how should you indeavor to serve him in Earth, who indeed serves you in Heaven? He provides for your safety and comfort: provide you for his Glory. He stands betwixt you and your Harms, against al sins, Devils, Temptations: stand you between him and his wrongs, that may be done to him.

Before we pass from this verse, one thing more may be shortly handled: and that taken from the consideration of the Time; When these persons shall beleeve, for whom our Savior here prayes; and that is cleerly discovered, to continue, until the end of the world, those who yet were not in the world, and those who should beleeve, even at the end of the world, for these now our Savior praies. Hence.

Our Savior hath a speciall care for those that shal beleeve on him,Doct. even in the worst condition of their Unbeleef.

So the text gives in, undeniable evidence; even before [Page 23]many had any being in Nature, and when some were, and others should be brought into the world, and had neither mind to know God nor Heart to seek after Christ, or to pray for themselves. Yet here ye see, our Savior takes in al those now within the compass of his prayer and care, to provide for them, and to con­trive all for their good, when they neither did, nor could care for him, or for themselves: therefore its plain.

Our Savior cares for such, who shal beleeve in him, when they are in the depth of their unbeleef: and his prayer is then working for their good, when they in­tend no good unto themselves. Our Savior, when they were in the heat of that hellish villany, in blaspheming, and killing the Lord of life, even then he intends life to them, procures and purchaseth life for them. Luk. 23, 34. Father, forgive them, they know not what they do. This prayer it was, that wrought more than Peters preaching, when his spirit was warmed with the Love of Jesus, and the Blood of a dying Savior ran fresh now, in al the Veins of his Heart, and the power and vertue of it was mighty upon the consciences of Peters Hearers, such, as had before been Crucifyers of the Lord of life. It then took place and prevailed mightily. Isa. 57.18. I have seen his waies, &c, though he see not him­self.

See this made good in some particulars, as

  • 1. In the several degrees of it,
  • 2. The Reason,
  • and 3. The Use.

This care, and the vertue of this prayer of our Savior will appear thus, in five Particulars.

Hence 1. It is, that the Lord contrives means in the waies of his. Providence for the bringing of these men into the world, so that the Parents and Predecessors of such, though happily desperately wicked and forlorn, shal yet have their stock and posterity continued in the world; because they shal bring these into the world, who shal beleeve. And therefore it is, the patience of [Page 24]God is extended towards many a wicked parent, nay to the whole stock and Linage of vile and loose men; not for their sakes, but the sakes and cause of some that shal come of them, whom the Lord Christ doth purpose to bring to himself. Math. 24.22. Had not God short­ned those daies, no flesh had been saved: but for his Elects sake, the Lord shortned those daies. i.e. The genera­tion of the Jews now rejecting and most Hellishly blaspheming the Lord Jesus Christ, had so provoked the Eyes of the Lord; That should he in Justice have pro­ceeded against them, and executed his righteous Judg­ments, either as the Nature of their sins deserved, or their Enemies intended, and out of their power and rage could easily have accomplished it, there had not been one Jew left alive to propagate their posterity, or name, or Nation.

But the Lord had an Eye to his Elect, that should come of these, in the last Age of the world, after so many Ages and generations past, when their dead Bones shal live, and the Redeemer shal come out of Sion, and turn Jacob from iniquity, then all Israel shal be saved: So the Apostle. Rom. 11.28. Hated for their sins sake: but beloved for their Fathers sake, i.e. For Abraham, with whom, through Christ, the covenant of the Gospel was made to him, and to his Seed: i.e. To al the faith­ful, whether Jew or Gentile: but with the Jew first, and then with the Graecian. For this calling and cove­nant, being everlasting, is without repentance, and wil assuredly take place, in the season thereof, when it shal be most sutable to shew forth free grace.

2. The Lord even so provides, that such means in an ordinary way of Providence, may be sent, continued, and dispensed to such, who never had a thought of them, enquired after them, or had a Heart to entertain them, when they are offered. Upon this ground the Lord appoints, and incourageth the Apostle. Act. 18.9, 10. Speak and hold not thy Tongue: Speak plainly and [Page 25]fully, fear no mans frowns, regard no mans favors, no man shal do thee harm: for I have people in this City. Thus the Spirit stopped the passage into Bithy­nia; for when they assayed, the Spirit suffered them not. Act. 16.7. But Christ sends post, by an express in a Vision to Paul; A man of Macedonia appeares, with this Petition in his Hand, subscribed by the Hearts of the messengers, Come into Macedonia, and help us. And when they came, the Issue shewes their Errand, A poor Woman, a Purple-seller, and a Stubborn and Rebellious spirited Jailour, was all the Markets he made.

But this is the Lords manner: if there be but one Grain of Corn in many heapes of Chaff, he wil never leave winnowing, rather than lose it: send he wil, Messenger after Messenger, until he hath gathered that into his barn. Onesimus, a Runnagate from his Master, without the reach of government of Gospel: God coops him up in Prison, and casts Paul thither also, that so he may come to the speech of him.

3. He keeps them by his restraining Grace, and some strong hand of Providence, sometimes from grosser sins (I say some of those that shal beleeve from some loath­some and hainous evil) but alwaies, from falling into that sin against the Holy Ghost: because that is a Disease which admits no Remedy, a Dungeon of that depth from whence there is no deliverance: beyond the reach of the work of Redemption, as that which comes not within the compass of mercy, and the Riches of the compassion of the Almighty.

The Lord hath passed the sentence, and that most Peremptory, and shews the deadly Malignity of that evil, by way of difference from all others. Math. 12.31. Wherefore I say unto you, all manner of sin and Blasphe­my shall be forgiven unto men; but the Blasphemy a­gainst the Holy Ghost shall never be forgiven, in this world, nor in the world to come. i.e. There is no [Page 26]Hope. It here cannot be pardoned: and at the great day he shal never be acquitted; neither here done, nor then declared. So that such a person hath the Tombstone of everlasting destruction turnd upon him & sealed: past Hope and help. And therefore the Apostle puts it upon an impossibility. Heb. 6.4. How far that goes, I wil not now dispute, whether in regard of the covenant of the Gospel, the counsel of the Lord, the Decree of the Almighty, that he shal never have Grace give him to repent: for then it should not so much aggravate the hainousness of the sin: because from impenitency and final presev [...]rance in any sin, its not possible such should be recovered; and this great evil upon this ground should have no other impossibility than many other. And withal the impossibility should then ly in Gods counsel, and definitive purpose, not in the Nature of the evil, which answers not the terrible expression of the wrath of God in the Text.

But however it is, it is safe and sure to Joyn Issue with the word of truth, and to take that upon trust. Its impossible such a one should be renewed by repen­tance. And therefore its impossible, a man, whom Christ hath ordained to beleeve and repent, should ever fal into that evil.

4. However the Lord many times, for reasons best known to himself, and his infinite good pleasure, suffers some, and many of those, whom he will afterwards effectually cal, to be overtaken with most loathsom abominations, yet he ever over-rules and over-works al those Hellish miscarriages of theirs, for the furtherance of his own work in them, when he seriously sets upon the accomplishment of it.

Somtimes there is no waies to cure Poyson, but with Poyson: no means to crush the pride and self-confidence and overweening conceit of a mans own worth, but to leave him to himself, that he may bedaub himself with some dirty and detestable distemper; that so his own [Page 27]experience may evidence his own baseness, and force him to put his Mouth in the Dust, and cover himself with confusion: when, through his own self deceiving appre­hension, he could never either see it, or bring his heart to be humbled for it before the Lord. Thus many, who in former times have soothed up themselves, with the glorious appearance of a formal profession, so that they could keep out, or wipe off, al the convictions that were presented before them: At length the Lord leaves them to some noysom lusts, one is overtaken with bruitish Drunkenness, another with some base uncleanness: and so the breaking of the impostume, and the venting of those vile evils, constraines their con­sciences to condemn themselves, for rotten; when the evidence of the word could not: and this hath been the occasion of the through conversion of some men.

Somtimes again, the Lord takes some men out of a sink, to make them mirrors of the power of his saving mercy to al posterity: The greatness of their sin, was the occasion, why their Hearts, were pierced for al sin. Act. 2.36, 37. 1 Tim. 1.16.

5. When the time appointed and determined before, in the counsel of the Lord is come, then the prayer of our Savior ever takes place, and makes the means effectual and prevailingly successeful for the good of such, for whom he hath taken the care. Joh. 10.16. I have other sheep, which are not yet of this fold, (such as in his counsel, were ordained to life, yet not called to the saving knowledg of the truth:) them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice.

These wandering sheep, that are gone astray from the walks of the Lord, yet he must bring: he must pluck the Adulterer from his lusts, and the Drunkard from his Cups, and worldling, who hath been Buried in his earthly occasions, these shall hear his voice; they are within his Ken, and under his care, and he provides for [Page 28]their good, though they intend no good unto them­selves. So Christ to Paul; (he is then pitying, while he is persecuting; he comes to save him, when he purpos­eth to destroy himself:) why persecutest thou me? Act. 9. So, Again he sends a Physitian to him. Ananias, go &c. vers. 11.

Reas. 1. From the Soveraignty of Gods wil, who looks at nothing in the creature, for which he should be moved to do good unto it, but only his good wil and pleasure, according to which [...]e curves out his compassion as suits with his own liking. Rom. 11.7. The Election hath obtained it: its not in the power of Israel. And therefore hence it is, He shews mercy, because he wil shew mercy: and he it is that raiseth up a mighty Salvation for his people, when they were in the depths of their sins and confusions also. Luk. 1.69. Ezek. 16.6. I saw her in her Blood, and then I said, Live.

2 The Riches of Gods mercy in Christ, and the scope of our Saviors coming, it is to destroy the work of Satan, and to bring life out of death, and light out of Darkness. Rom. 5. and last. That where sin abounded, Grace hath abounded much more. That is the aim of the place; why then was the Law given, since the Law could not save, but only Christ? Answ. It was, that sin might abound: when corruption was discovered, opposed, and provoked, then it was made out of measure sinful. That where sin hath abounded, Grace also might much more abound. q.d. The Lord Christ would redeem his people, let the Devil and sin do their worst. So the Apostle again disputes, Rom. 5.8. God commended his love to us, that when we were sinners, Christ died for us. [...], The Lord painted and limned out the surpassing excellency of his love in most lively Colors.

Its the scope also of the coming of our Savior. He came not to call the righteous, but sinners to Repentance. He was not to find them blessed, but to make them [Page 29]so. Isa. 49.5. Christ was formed from the Womb, to be his servant, that he might bring Jacob again. Its he that leaves the ninty nine in the Wilderness, and goes to seek up that which was lost in the Wilder­ness.

If the Soveraignty of Gods good pleasure appointed this; The Riches of his free Grace and the scope of our Saviors coming intended this: then certainly our Savior would carefully accomplish it: but the antecedent is such: therefore the consequent.

Use 1 of Instruction.

Here see the different dispensation of the dealing of the Lord in the waies and works of his providence to­wards men of the same quality, and that in the same condition, men as sinful, one as another, and under the power of their sin, and in an unregenerate state both of them: Yet the counsel of God and the care of our Savior Christ is farr different, even surpassing mans imagination and thought.

Be they both unbeleevers now for the present, adver­saries to his Grace, and opposers of his word, and the work of his spirit, and it may be with greater out-rage and violence, the one more than the other? And yet the Lord may do nothing but in love, and out of mercy to the one; intercede now in Heaven, order al creatures, and overwork al occasions in Earth, for the good of the one, and do nothing for the other; but there is a hand of Justice, and the Poyson of his displeasure, which first or last, either in the entrance, or in the Issue, wil be an ingredient in every passage of Gods providence to­wards them: Let them both have the same outward bles­sing, its Diet to the one, surfet to the other poyson to the one, and a preservative to the other: the one wil be quickned and inlarged to God by it with thankfulness, the other becomes proud, insolent towards men, care­less and negligent towards God.

Let them both be under the same Rod and correction, the one wil be made more humble, and the Heart wil be wrought to a more watchful care to walk more awfully before the Lord: the other wil be made more frampful and preverse and hardned in a self willy erring frame of Spirit. Thus some expound that of Paul, Gal. 1.15. God who had separated him from the Womb, had set him a part in his counsel and purpose to such a service, and even from the Womb, in his education and course of life, and studyes, he was severing and suiting of him for his own turn.

Object. But it wil be said; do not we see by proof and experience; that even the dearest servants of the Lord, before their conversion pervert even the bounty and blessing of the Lord, to the increase of their sin and hasting of their ruin? The learning and wisdome of Paul lifts up his Heart in pride, and sets on his spirit to presecute the Church. He profited more than his equals: and breathed out threatnings more than they al. How are these then fruits of mercy, when they are thus ac­cursed to a man? and indeed can be no other, for an unbeleeving Heart wil suck Poyson out of the sweetest blessing the Lord bestows.

Answ. They are blessings as they come from God, and as he give them, they prove Curses; as the Heart that is yet graceless abuseth them: they are preservatives, as they come from the Hand of the almighty, and he administers them: they are turned to Poyson, as a corrupt Heart perverts them to its own hurt. As the Physitian out of love and wisdom administers a whol­som potion, but a foul stomack turns it al into matter of an ill Humor, and so a Disease.

And yet also I answer in the Second place; That in the Issue, at the last, the Lord even out-bids all, and over-works all; even the abuse of all blessings, the the furfeting upon al his kindnesses, to the further abasing of the soul, fearful and thankful walking before [Page 31]him, when once he is effectually brought home. There is a special Confection made out of the kindnesses, and our corrupt distempers, for our deeper Humiliation, in regard of our selves and admiration, in regard of Gods goodness. As it was said of them in Egypt, so the Psalmist applies it to al, The Lord doth marva [...]lously separate his mercier.

Hence also we have an answer to the cavil of the Papists, who plead, that Christ doth not bear al the punishment which the Saints deserve: For say they, before their conversion, when they were not in the state of Grace, nor in Christ, those afflictions that were laid on them, must needs be true punishments, and issue from divine Justice revenging, not from the love of a Father correcting: & therefore Christ may suffer for the pardon of al their sins, and yet not bear al their punish­ments.

Answ. They do come from the love of a Father, who in his counsel hath determined it, and in Christ hath fully transacted it, though it is not yet actually either bestowed, or received of them in the work of redemp­tion.

Use 2.

Here is matter of admiration, of the boundless and un­conceivable compassion of the Lord Jesus, towards those that do beleeve, they should get them into Davids Counting-House of serious consideration, and Sum up al those precious expressions of his faithfulness and goodness in their whol course;

Instead of reckoning up the value of them, melt away, and be wholly swallowed up in the wonderment and admiration of that, they are not able to recount, much less to comprehend, according to the worth thereof. Psal. 40.5. Many, O Lord, my God, are thy won­derful works, which thou hast done and thy thoughts [Page 32]which are to us-ward, they cannot be reckoned up in order unto thee.

Look back therefore men, Bretheren, and Fathers, beloved and blessed of the Lord, unto the daies forepast, even from that first birth, unto this present hour: The goodness of the Lord, how hath it grown up, and gone along with you from time to time? view the succession of those sweet and tender compassions, which have been renewed and multiplied upon you, as your years, and daies, and months, and moments of your life.

Know it was from the care, and through the vertue of the prayers of Christ, that you came into this world, that he first time of your breathing had not been the first time of your damning. He hath rocked your Cradles, nursed you at your Mothers Breasts, trained you up in your ten­der years, taken care of you, and then prayed for you, when you did not, could not, pray for your selves: Oh the Riches of that Mercy!

Will not every Man say, cannot each Man confess it, had I continued in such a place, conversed with such wretched company, with whom I was somtimes linked and confederate, had not the Lord freed me from those snares, delivered me from those temptations: had he not born with the baseness of my Heart, but taken the advantage against me, and snatched me away, when I was posting down to Hell, in the eager pursuit of such and such base lusts; there had been no possibility, but I had perished. Oh the Riches of that Mercy!

Nay had he but let Satan loose upon me, or mine own corruptions loose within me, unto which I was addicted, and which was my delight and life: This wretched Heart had never come to an end, nor measure in sin. A Cain here, A Judas here, An Achitophel here, nay a Hell was here in this Heart: yea what the Heart of Beelzebub harbored, the spawn of it was here, So that might I have had but mine own will, I had never ceased sinning, until I had come unto that unpardonable sin [Page 33]against the Holy Ghost, and so had been past Hope of recovery. But it was the care, the prayer of Jesus that prevented it, and my everlasting ruin. Oh the Riches of that mercy!

Nay, when I lay secure and senseless in my sin, and never thought of means, nor ever sought for them, he sent them: though I was careless, he continued them, when there was no Eye to pity me, nor I had a Heart to pity my self, yet when he saw me in my Blood, he said, live, Poor creature, live. Oh the Riches of that mercy of a Christ!

Nay, such was the rebellion and Enmity of this wretched Heart, that I rejected life it self, took up Armes against the Almighty & the offer of his mercy, and professed I would none of that Grace of his, that might pardon, that holiness that might purge and purifie this vile Heart, none of that life and Power of his that might quicken me, nor hear, though he counselled never so wise­ly, I would not yield to his convictions, nor come in to those earnest intreaties.

But Christ would take no nay, I must be humbled, though I resolved to keep my pride, I must submit, though my heart was bent to oppose. The prayer of Christ would preserve me from my sins, and bring me to himself, though I would have perished. Oh the height, the length, the breadth of his mercy.

Christ's Prayer FOR BELEEVERS.

Verse 21.

That they all may be one, as thou Father art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us, that the world may beleeve that thou hast sent me.

IN the former verse we had the parties mentioned and described, for whom our Savior prayes: the several parti­culars therein expressed, we have ope­ned. From this 21. verse to the end, we have the matter of our Saviors prayer in a most high, heavenly, and mysterious man­ner laid forth and presented to our consideration; where­in the incomprehensible worth of his love and wisdom seems to contend for precedency; and in truth both in­comparable in themselves, & unconceiveable by the shal­low scantling of the weak and feeble capacity of the Sons of Men.

To pray and purchase that for his faithful ones, that they, who are, by nature and sin, enemies against him, and opposite unto him, may in a proportionable manner, as far, as their meanness is capable, be as near to him, as he to his Father: a Poor creature durst not have begd so Rich a favor, could not expect it, and is hardly brought to beleeve it possible. As he: Is it true indeed, that God will dwell in a Tabernacle made with hands? behold, the Heaven of Heavens is not able to contain him, how much less, this House, this Heart? or as he: I am not worthy, thou shouldest come under my roof.

Yet our Savior excludes not the meanest, imbraceth al in the Arms and Bowels of his compassion. That they all may be one: even such silly, Poor, despicable ones, may be one in us. Nor yet is the work more glorious, than the discovery mysterious, deep, and unsearchable, one in us, as I in thee, and thou in me, which we may rather adore, than imagine we can con­ceive,

The things he prayes for, may be referred to these two Heads:

  • 1. What concernes their spiritual wellfare here, in this life, at least in the tast and beginnings of it.
  • 2. What may maintain the top and height of their glory in another world, in the meeting, concurrence, and continuance of al that special happiness they shall attain unto. Father, I will, that those, which thou hast given me, may be, where I am. q. d.

He would not live in Heaven, unless he might have his members with him; not content to be in glory, unless they might be the Spectators of it, and sharers; that he might be in them, and the love of God in them for ever.

The special things which he begs, as that which con­cerns their, eternal wellfare, is only this, and in truth, [Page 37]almost al, or more than al is contained in it viz. That they al may be one.

This is Propounded first, Amplified by several circumstances in the 21, 22, 23. verses,

  • 1. By the special nature of this unity, or Oneness; what is meant and understood, namely, to be one in them, laid out by way of resemblance: As the Father is in the Son, and the Son in the Father, so they should be one in them.
  • 2. From the end why, Namely, the lifting up of the honor of Christ in the Hearts and acknowledg­ments of the ungodly, even by a constraining evi­dence, whether they wil or no: their own consci­ences will yield it, and their mouths also confess it at the day of Judgment; That Christ was sent from the Bosom of the Father, to bring his servants unto himself, when he passed by the greatest part of the world; as he found them, so left them in their sins.
  • 3. The means by which they come to attain this so great a priviledg verse 22. I have given them the glory, thou gavest unto me, that they may be one, as we are one.
  • 4. The order how this is dispensed, how received: dispensed from God, received by them. verse 23. To-wit, Christ should be in them, the Father in Christ, and so they should be made perfect in one. And here the end is repeated and inlarged also further, That ths world may know, that he hath sent his Son for this end, and that he hath loved them, as he loved him.

Ye have the several truths set out in their order before you, and how woven together: this is the Key of this Scripture, and willet in some light, for the more clear discovery of so mysterious truth. The main divine truth to be attended, is this.

The chief Priviledg of the Saints,Doct. for which our Savior especially prayes, is; That they all may be one.

This is the Sum and pith of the great request of the Lord Jesus, which he puts up in the behalf of al beleevers, as the choicest legacy, he would bequeath unto them, and leave with them, and lay in for their behalf; when he was to leave the world: that which he propounds in the first place, before all others, repeates again, and pursues it, as the grand Suit of al, that did concern their good: That they may al be one. If once this can be attained, nothing can be wanting, what ever shall be desired, and is truly good. The unity of Beleevers is the great priviledg, of which they can partake, and for which our Savior prayes.

We are here to inquire,

  • 1. Of what kind of unity our Savior and the Text here speaks.
  • 2. What that unity is, wherein it consists, and by what discerned.

Touching the Answer to the, First.

I must crave leave under favour and correction to step aside from the common Road, the usual apprehension of many Interpreters; whose Judgment and knowledg I highly prize and reverence, and with whom I could de­sire to concur, and easily so should, but that Evidences out of the Text (to my seeming and shallowness at least) are so cleer, that they constrain my Judgment to go a little aside. I Answer therefore;

  • 1. Negatively.
  • 2. Affirmatively.

Negatively: The union of love and concord with the faithful, as the members of the same Body ought to maintain in their hearts and consciences, and in their [Page 39]converse and societies one with another; keeping that unity of spiritual agreement in the bond of peace: to think the same thing, and speak the same thing: to be of the same mind and Heart, as it was said of them in the Primitive times; Act. 1.14. They continued with one accord, and Chapter 4.32. The multitude of them which belee [...]ed, were of one mind, and one Heart.

This unity of amity, of love, and mutual and spirit­ual a [...]cord, is not the chief aim and intendment of the Text, nor yet the purpose of the prayer of our Savior. Though indeed it may be collected and inferred from this: and to my apprehension, the very letter doth look another way, and speaks aloud touching another thing. For so,

1. The words immediately following are marvailous plain and express, That they may be one in us. True it is, they should be, and those that have the same spirit. of love, as the same soul in many members, they wil be of one and the same affection each to other: but that Christ now prayes for, which presupposeth this, and is indeed the foundation thereof, is, Namely, that they be one in us: and then they wil be at unity, one with an­other. Yea the very manner of speech, laid down by way of comparison and resemblance, seems to be added, as a further clearing and interpretation, of that which went before. That which was propounded there in the general, here comes more fully to be explicated; As though our Savior had said, when I pray that al beleevers may be one, my meaning may thus be conceived, and my intendment rightly understood by this resemblance. As I am in the Father, and the Father in me: the scope of my prayer is; that they should be one in us, after their manner.

Again when our Savior sets down the order, how he would have this unity attained and preserved, the speaks ful verse 23. I in them and thou in me, and so they [Page 40]shal be made perfect into one q. d. If they all be in me, as I am in thee, then are they in unity: and thou being in me, and I in them, then are they perfected in this unity: As they are one in me, and so in thee, by spiritual dependance, to receive al: So I am one in them and thou in me, by spiritual influence, and we communicate al unto them.

2. The Second reason is out of verse 22. Where the Glory, which Christ hath received and given to his ser­vants, is made a means to obtain this unity. The glory, which thou hast given to me, I gave to them, that they may be one, as we. Whence it follows by undeniable evidence; This unity is one Stayr and degree beyond the glory it self, which the Saints receive: For its a rule-case in reason, the end is more excellent, and of greater worth and goodness, than the means appointed for the end. Unity of affection among the Saints is part of that glory, or an ingredient which makes up the glory of the Saints, but this unity is the end of that glory, and so more excellent; therefore somthing beyond that, or any ingredient in it.

2. I answer affirmatively in a word,

The unity here meant is the unity of that spiritual relation which they have to Christ, and in him to God the Father; not the unity of affection or charity, which they have one to another, and one between ano­ther.

That which is more excellent than this unity of affe­ction, as being the end unto that, is ordained unto that, as the end, that must be somthing beyond it: so this unity is.

That which is properly bounded by the words of the text, and intendment of the place, upon Christ, and the Father in him; That unity is not the unity of affecti­on, but of relation.

But this unity, by the express testimony of the truth and Text is bounded upon the Father in Christ: That [Page 41]they may be one in us. therefore the unity here intended is that of relation, not of affection.

We have now gained the first: what kind of unity this is. We are now to inquire, wherein this consists, or how it may be discerned.

The explication of this, wil be the interpretation of the words of the Text, which follow; which are applied (as far as yet I can conceive by the most sad considerati­on) unto this very purpose now in hand. For when our Savior had prayed; That they might be one; That they might aright understand it, and so, the exceeding love of Christ; who did not seek, nor so obtain (for he is ever heard in what he asks) any mean or ordinary blessing, or common courtesie for them, for their present comfort and refreshing. But the choicest mercy, a blessing of in­comparable worth and surpassing excellency; That, I say, they might understand this and receive sutable comfort for it; He addes, by way of explication, what he meaneth, with as much plainness, as such a spiritual mystery, which touched the very inward Heart-Blood of our happiness could be discovered. q. d. If you ask what I mean by this unity, and whereby it may de dis­cerned: I answer by this familiar comparison: As I am in the Father, and he in me, so I wish, they may be one in us. So that here we must unfold,

  • 1. How the Son is one in the Father, & he one in him.
  • 2. Then conceive after what manner the Saints and beleevers must be one in them, for this Christ hath prayed: this he hath obtained: this shall undoubtedly be received.

Both which I cannot tel how more nakedly to lay open, than to express in several short propositions, or conclusions.

1. The ground of this resemblance, taken from the manner of the Sons being in the Father, is not to be attended, nor ought to be considered in regard of the God Head or essence of the Deity: but in regard of their [Page 42]subsistence, as they be distinct persons in this their dis­pensation. Therefore the word is in the plural: One in us, as shewing the number of the persons: besides, they are put by way of particular distinction each to other; the Father in the Son, the Son in the Father, not so much as mentioning, nor yet taking the God-Head into the comparison, is common to them both indifferently; as I am in thee, not in the God-Head: thou in me, not as both in the God-Head, for that was to be one in a third, not in themselves.

2. Their being each in other, issues out of the mutual respect they have each unto the other. The Father whol­ly and alone gives his being and sonship unto Christ: The Son, as he receives, so he returnes his being to the Father, as relates, or things in relation, look each to other alone, receive and give consistence one to another, and depend each upon other, in that behalf, and so to be in the other mutually, their very constitution and being, rising from this concurrence, mutual holding each upon the other; and [...]o may be truly said to be in each other. As buying is in refe [...]nce ever to selling. Giving ever in reference to taking: so that one cannot be without the other, give being each to other, and so may be said to be in each other.

So the Father, as such, looks only to the Son: the Son looks only to the Father. He is not a Father, be­cause God, but, because he hath a Son. The Son is not therefore Son, because he is God, but because he hath a Father: for they are both equally one God and have the Deity indifferently agreeing to them both. As a man is not therefore a Husband, because he is a man, for then every man should be a husband, but in reference to the Woman he hath married.

And hence the Father is said to be in the Son, and the Son in the Father, namely to be one in this mutual re­spect. The Father had an Eye only to the Son in giving his subsistence of a Son: The Son again hath an Eye to [Page 43]the Father alone, returning the being of his sonship to him. And they are prefect in this; They wholly give, wholly take. Thus they are said to be in each other. Joh. 14.10. Beleevest thou not, that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? so said again, to be one with another, and delighting one in another. Prov. 8.30. And mu­tually to glorifie one another. Father glorifie thy Son, that thy Son may glorifie thee. Joh. 17.1.

3. The second person in the glorious Trinity so takes our Human Nature into personal Union with him, that he is the same person he was, no other, and it becomes one person with him, leanes upon him, hath his depen­dance from him, & looks alone to him for his subsistence.

As a Son, he assumes our Nature, and as a Son with our Nature looks to the Father. Therefore said, he doth nothing of himself, but what he sees the Father do. Joh. 5.19. As the Father hath life in himself, so he hath given to he Son, to have life in himself because the Son of man verse, 26.27.

4. As the Father is said to beget his Son, and give being to him, so the Son, as thus begotten assumes our Nature, be comes the Head of the covenant and gives being of Sonship to his Children, and they returne al that being to the Lord Christ, and the Father in him Therefore called the eternal Father. Isa. 9.6. Hebr. 2.1, 3. Here am I, and the Children thou hast given me called also his seed. The manner of which words may thus be conceived.

The Lord hath purchased the Spirit, he is said then to beget, when he sends the spirit of Sons in [...]o their Hearts, which by the immutable assistance thereof, sets their hearts for God, holds the bent thereof towards him alone, as their Father, and principle of life. As they receive this being of Sons they returne it wholly to the Father in Christ: The whole man, in the whol, and that with his whol strength, fastens upon God in Christ, acted wholly by the influence of his spirit, and holds the not excellency thereof.

The Sum of all, out of all that hat been said.

1. Ʋnity is the chiefest priviledg for which Christ prayes, and beleevers can partake of, as their peculiar good in themselves.

I add that, In themselves; because there be higher ends than this, in the Text: To-wit, the setting up of God in Christ in the Consciences of the ungodly, that they may be forced to confess, that God sent his Son to this end; That he loved them, as he loved Christ. There is yet another and higher end: That they may behold and wonder, and be swallowed up in the admi­ration of the glory of Christ, which the Father hath given him.

Enquire here, how far Christ being in the Saints, and his love in them, may yet be a higher end, than this.

2. This Ʋnity is not the unity of affection between each other so much, but the unity of relation to God in Christ: That as the Father is in the Son, and the Son in the Father, by eternal generation; Beleevers so ought to be in both, by spiritual Adoption.

3. In this Spiritual Adoption, as there is an influence from God in Christ, to bend and settle the frame of the Heart towards him: So there is a re-fluence and return, by the power and impression left of the same spirit to come again to him. Conveyance of help on Gods hand should quicken our dependance to look to him, and stay our selves with him there.

4. Had Adam stood, his posterity, out of principles, in themselves, might have challenged happiness, though a covenant performed by a man, conveyed by a man, unto them, by way of natural generation.

But in the covenant of the Gospel, the second Adam, the second person, taking our Nature, by the power of the Deity, wrought al for us, communicates al to us: by the same almighty power, inables us to receive what we have from him: To be acted in al by him; To re­turn all to him. The mutable principle in the crea­ture [Page 45]never brought a man to God, nor kept him with him: But the mutable presence and Spirit of Christ.

So that there is a priviledg here above that principle of Grace that was in Adam, for that was but a creature. But here the spirit and so the power of God through Christ, that takes our Nature into the neerest union with him, even personal, which in Adam it attained not, in that purchaseth all for us. Not a principle in us first­ly, but the spirit of God in Christ it is, by which, the bent of our Hearts are held and carried towards him, acted by him, and so inabled to hold out the ver­tue, power, praise, and excellency of the spirit in Christ from the Father.

So that a poor creature is compassed about with no­thing, but whith the power of God in Christ, and becomes one with Father and Son in their mutual relation to them, and totall dependance upon them. And this is above the innocency and excellency of Adam in Para­dise, and all that he could attain unto; and above all created Grace in Heaven, being wholly taken up with God in Christ, and loose our selves in God and Christ. Eph. 4.13. The acknowledgment of the Son of God. It was not the Son of man that did it: The Son of God, that recovered us, held the bent of our hearts to him, acted us, kept us, perfected us, crownes us. God shal be all in all. The Father gives being to the Son, returnes all to the Father, and that eternal generation, and so one. The Lord Christ, as a son, and begotten of the Father, gives us the being of Children by Adoption, sets us, and holds us. We take al, acted by him, re­turn to him. As the Father in Christ gives all, we re­ceive, and to the Father through Christ we return al, and so we are one in the Father and the Son.

I. Reason.

1. Because this is the scope of our Saviors coming into [Page 46]the world, and the next end, I say, the next end he intended in the great work of Redemption, which he wrought for lost man; To bring him into this neer relation of dearest Love of the Father, by himself and the work of his spirit: and its that wherein the life and power and pith of the covenant of Grace, doth especially consist and appeare, and the excellency thereof.

That peculiar and spiritual intercourse, not alone of affection, but of divine operation of God upon the soul, whereby the soul returns all unto God, to do al, and to receive all, to do all for himself in man, and to receive all to himself by man.

So that God alone doth all in this, firstly upon man, and then by man. If this work was so much in the Eye of our Savior, and that intended: So chief also in the performance, and that accomplished with care: no wonder it had the next Room and remembrance in his prayer. But so it was: this was the main errand of our Savior, when he was sent into the world, and the very life of the kingdom of Grace, and the covenant of Grace, as it concerned them. So the Lord professeth by the Prophet, Esa. 49, 5, And now, saith the Lord, that formed me from the Womb, to be his servant: Our Savior, appointed in Gods decree, sanctified and over­shadowed by the Holy Ghost in the womb, and called to this end, for this work, To bring Jacob back again to him.

It was that which was plotted by the Head and policy of Satan, and brought about by the fal and through the folly of our first parents; To break off this unity and Oneness betwixt God and Adam: For Satan had found it by woful experience in himself, that by sin God would be estranged from him, and he also from God: neither to find his favour towards him, nor the presence of his spirit of Grace to work upon him: nor yet would Adam, thus departed, act for God, nor return to him that praise he ought: So that God and Adam are not one, but at odds.

Its the meaning of that place. Gal. 3.19, 20. When the Apostle had shewed the weakness of the Law, in the work of Justification, and the promise only carried it; He makes thig Objection; wherefore then served the Law, i.e. The giving of the Law? Answer; It was to discover transgression; and therefore it was given by the Hand of a Mediator, to-wit Moses, who was between God and the people.

Now, in that Moses was a Mediator, it shews there was diverse parties differing and disagreeing one from another: for a Mediator is not of one: not of parties that are at unity and agreement; but God is one, ever like himself and the same. Therefore the cause of dif­ference was not on Gods part, but by Reason of tran­gression; which shews man to be other, than he was by Nature, ful of guilt and sin, and that's the reason God is at odds with him, as he is departed from God.

Now the scope of our Saviors coming is, to bring the Soul back again unto God, by himself, and to make it one with the Father and himself. It was beyond the power of any created Grace to bring back a fallen Soul; but the God-Head of Christ, in the Nature of man assumed, must bring the Nature of man to God again. And where as, it was found by proof in our first parents; that the power of created Grace did not, nay indeed could not, hold the Soul unchangeably to him, and so to act by, and for him.

Herein lies the life and incomparable excellency of the covenant of Grace, and the fulness of the sufficiency of the quickning power of the second Adam, the Lord Jesus, not only to procure unto acceptance and appro­bation with the Father, but the lively communication of himself, and the assistance of his spirit, to keep our hearts, and the gracious work thereof to him for ever.

So that, though our Graces might and would fall us in Adam, yet the spirit of Jesus upholds and holds us for ever towards him, a fountain of living water. Though [Page 48]the vertue and work thereof would wanse away, and through not-attendance, not put forth it self upon the rule, and for the work, as we see in Adam, He attended not unto, acted not upon a command, but listened to the delusion and suggestion of the enemy. Yet the spirit of Christ, which dwelleth with us, and shall be in us, is there, not only to keep with us and carry us to Christ, but to quicken us by vertue from Christ, ac­cording to the tenure of the Gospel. Joh. 14.17. And this is indeed to be under the powerful impression of the covenant of Grace. And this is the meaning of that place. I live not, but Christ lives in me. Gal. 3.20. Christ by Faith brings me to God. By his spirit keeps the bent of the heart towards him. carryes it to himself, acts it upon himself: quickens it by influence of vertue, the fountain whereof is in himself. Adam might have said, I live, by a power and principle of Grace, in which I was created, and in which I have pleased God thereby, and according to a covenant of works may challenge life and happiness. But Paul in the person of al self-deny­ing sinners, professeth that, I live not. Christ hath called me, brought me to himself; gives me his spirit, and keeps the Eye of my Soul upon himself: That he may thereby, Be all in all to me, work all in me and by me.

Its the meaning also of that. Col. 3.3, 4. Our life is bid with Christ in God: when Christ, who is our life shall appeare. God is in Christ, is in us: keeps us to himself, and communicates al saving Graces of life here, and will quicken and perfect all in the whol man at his resurrection. Thus then we see, The end of our Saviors coming, and the life of the covenant of Grace; both these our Savior would further by his prayer:

But this unity with the Father and the Son; is the end of our Saviors coming, and the life of the Covenant.

2. Reason.

This work being savingly and effectually made good upon the soul, it maks way for the inlarged expression of all the fruits and works of holiness, which might fur­ther set forth the honor of God, the kingdom of Christ, our own comforts here, and happiness in another world. Its the meaning of that, Joh. 15.5. He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit. True, it is done by faith: but it is somthing other, and somthing more, than the bare coming to Christ, or our Union with him. It is the keeping the Eye of the soul, and carrying the bent of the Heart upon the engagements of Gods dearest love, and the unchangeable work of the spirit of Adoption to be acted by the quickning vertue thereof in Gods time, and after Gods manner, and an­swerable to our need, and that condition and place we possess in the Body of Christ; for so that phrase implieth. Joh. 6.56. He that eateth my Flesh and drinketh my Blood (that is done by beleeving) He abideth in me, and I in him. That is another and a further work; And it intimates a free and a ful intercourse of spiritual com­munion between God and the soul: and a communica­tion of his presence and spiritual influence upon the be­leever.

As it is in the Body natural, when the constitution is healthful, and the composition of parts compleat and in a sweet order, there is a free intercourse of blood and spirits between each part, and in each passage, whence the whole is in perfect strength, and each part active and able to its office. But when there grow obstructions, the passages between part and part are stopped, the work is hindered, and the whole prejudiced, both in health and strength. So it is, when this Oneness and this neer re­lation in the power and expressions of it, betwixt the Soul and the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, hath his [Page 50]ful and free-passage; There is a special intercourse of the presence and spiritual influence of the spirit of A­doption upon the soul, whence follows a quickning vertue and inlarged fruitfullness in all the services to God and man. As they are one with the Father and Christ; so are they wholly acted by them, and approve both their hearts and carriages unto them in all well pleasing. So the Apostle, 1. Joh. 3.6. He that abideth in Christ, sinneth not, but he that sinneth, hath not seen him, nor known him.

Use to • Instruct , • Comfort , and • Exhort  Us.

1. Instruction. The practise of our Savior is a pre­cedent and pattern of praying to al the faithful, unto the end of the world, teaching us, how we should order our desires, when we appear before the Lord, and put up our petitions unto the throne of Grace.

Thou seest here, what our Savior seeks for, sues for, and that in thy behalf, and for thy good: yea when he would lay in for the relief of his servants, and provide for their comfort in this world, before he was to go into another world▪ When he would suit them with bles­sings, and good things, that might be serviceable for their everlasting wellfare. This is the great and grand request, and that put up in the first place, That they may be one in us.

Go thy way, do thou likewise: pray thou likewise: Let this petition have the chief place in thy heart, and the first place in thy prayer. As the Apostle in another case; I may in this; Let the same mind be in thee that was in Jesus Christ. He is most wise, and best knows what may procure our good, and is more merciful and careful for our wellfare than we our selves. If wise, and knows [Page 51]best: merciful and cares more for our eternal good, than we for our selves; when we have such a Guid that can not erre, who shews us the way, we may safely follow it.

A pattern beyond all exception: we may, nay we ought, if we be wise-hearted, to imitate it. The pray­er of our Savior is the standard: by this we should make al prayers, judg all. True, in every thing our prayers and supplications ought to be made known to God: What ever we would have, or have a sanctified use of, seek it, and seek a blessing upon it; what ever we receive, be thankful for it. But, that which is of greatest worth, we have most need of, and may receive most good by, affect that more than al the rest, and seek that before all other. Of the six Petitions, but one for worldly things. Where the Lord in his word bestows more lives and la­bour to direct thee, bestow thou most care to attend and take it.

Set then this prayer of our Savior a Sampler dayly before thine Eyes, when thou comest to petition good things for thy self, say; It is not the profiting of this world, that may inrich, not comforts, conveniences which might content, that I seek for. But, Oh that I, and al mine, and al thine, the families of thy servants and the assembly, may be, not one only in affection, but one in that neerest relation of dearest love, to thee blessed Father and blessed redeemer, That we might not live, but thou wouldest live in us, That we may be al one in thee.

Use 2. Comfort.

We have here matter of unconceiveable comfort to support the feeble spirit, and fetch up the fainting and drooping hearts of the poor and faithful servants of the Lord. What ever difficulty ye meet withal, that may dismay you: what ever opposition from without, which [Page 52]may resist and hinder, or weakness from within, that may discourage you, either from the seeking or expecting so great a favor, so high and happy a priviledg from the hands of the Lord:

What: that I! Such a sinful and wretched creature? who am sit to be cooped up with the damned, and chained up with the Devils, who have been one with them in al their wickedness: temptations have not been presented, occasions offered so soon, but Oh! this vile heart, hath been one, and sided with them, and been carried by them, and transported with distempers, as with a violent stream.

What I can this carnal cursed heart ever be one with so holy and blessed a God? what! I! that have been a Traytor to the Lord Jesus, and shed his Blood, and crucified again the Lord of life! I! who have been a Rebel against the Rich mercy and Grace of the Father, so graciously provided, so freely offered? that ever I should imagine to be one with these, who have been an enemy to both? its beyond my thoughts, much more my Hopes, its not possible, therefore not credible. Why? alas, mine own experience wil give in evidence, and that undeniable, against my Soul. I have had all means, injoyed all ordinances, God hath tried all con­clusions, compassed me about with mercies, hedged me in with afflictions, to hold my heart to him, and keep me with him: All Hopes and helps have been plucked away, from whence I expected relief, that I might look to him, and be quickened and carried by him: Its not possible therefore to be attained. True, Its not pos­sible for al means to work: Nor possible by any power or ability of thine own to bring it about: And yet it is not possible, if the Lord Jesus have prayed for it, but God should give it, and you undoubtedly receive it from his Majesties hands. Our Savior professeth so much. Father, I know tho hearest me alwaies. Joh. 1.4 [...]. therefore its no more but that which Christ avoweth, he [Page 53]knows: and therefore thou mayst build upon it & know: Yea upon this ground, he supports the heart of Peter, in that heavy Shock, when almost al was gone. Luk. 22.32. Satan hath destred to winnow you, but I have prayed, that thy Faith fail not.

When therefore Satans Assaults are never so fel and fierce, his temptations never so fiery, which with their vehemency, multitude and continuance, seem to shake and sink thy heart; when helps and heart and Hopes and prayers and al fail, so that thou art at thy wits end, and utmost period of thy thoughts: yet the prayer of our Savior never fails of acceptance and success. Therefore set thy heart at rest; Christ shal either miss of his prayer, or I will not miss of this priviledg. Therefore yet this staggering and back-sliding heart wil be se [...]led. There­fore this giddy and unstedy heart wil be established. If the Father will deny Christs prayer: I am content he should deny my comfort and support. But the one is impossible, and the other is incredible.

Its seasonable even for unbeleeving creatures (leaving secret things to Gods counsel) when they have no heart to pray, not Hope to expect any favor; and where ever they cast their Eye, they find nothing but cause of discouragement and confusion of face: look into the world, there is nothing but vanity there to deceive and vex, look they into their own hearts and lives, there is nothing, but Hells of sin and guilt, which might over­whelm them; Look then to the Prayer of our Savior, who prayed for His in their worst condition, when they did not beleeve, and could not pray for themselves, and were as bad as I am: even for Paul, when he was per­secuting and blaspheming, even for many of the Jews, when they were killing of him, and why not for me? why may I not Hope the best, when I cannot conclude the worst? what God wil do, he knows not: what he may do, he hath revealed, and I will yet expect.

Use 3. Exhortation.

He prayed for this disposition, labor thou to attain it. He desired it of his Father in Heaven, indeavor thou to the utmost of that care and skill thou hast, in the use of all means to attain it upon earth. The Sum is: That the whol strength of the Soul should be wholly carried to God in Christ for all: not to any thing in our selves we have, or for any thing we can do (as Adam might have pleaded, I have done, I have deserved it) but wholly to be quickened and acted by the spirit of God through Christ.

The Soul should be like the Herb Heliotropium, the Nature whereof is such, as the philosopher observes, It turnes the face of it towards the Sun, what way soever it turnes: In the morning looks to the East, the Sun rising: In the evening to the West, the Sun setting. So it should be with the beleeving sinner, the face and Eye of the Soul ever towards God in Christ.

That which our Souls need, and which is able to an­swer our desires, and satisfie our necessities; is here alone to be had: hither alone we must come, from hence, for ever look to receive it. So Peter disputes. Act. 4.12. Job. 6. When our Savior would settle their staggering disposition, least they should be taken a [...]de; will ye also go away! He answers, and yields the argument; Whither should we go? thou only hast the words of eternal life. Here only is that wisedom that may guid; here only that mercy that may succor; here only is that Grace that may refresh and quicken; Its good there­fore coming, being here. So they by experience con­cluded; Jer. 3.29. Surely in vam is Salvation hoped for from the Hills: and from the multitude of the Mountaines: truly in the Lord our God is the Salvation of Israel. And upon the like ground they resolves, Hos. 14.3. For in thee the Fatherless [Page 55]findeth mercy. Its not Els-where to be found. There­fore learn we to chide our hearts out unto God in Christ. As Jacob his Sons, Why stand ye here gazing one upon another? go unto Egypt and buy, that we may live and not die. Gaze not upon the sins, weak­nesses, temptations, miseries, means, ordinances &c. get ye to God in Christ, that ye may for ever be assured, comforted, and quickened.

As its alone here to be had, So here we shal never fail to receive what we seek and expect. Ps. 10.20.

Verse 21.

— That the world may beleeve, that thou hast sent me.

THese last words lay out the main scope of the Prayer of our Savior, at which he aimed, and which he looked at principally, by the grant of that spiritual unity which he craved in the behalf of his disciples. And the end is, To lift up the prais and honor of that supream and absolute soveraignty of God the Father in sending; his own faithfulness and infinite sufficiency in executing and accomplishing the great work of Redemption, about which he was sent: so that there was nothing failed of all that the Father purposed, and he undertook to per­form: and that the world and worst of men, however formerly they rebelled against his authority, counsel, and command in sending; rejected also the person and proceeding of our Savior Christ in coming: who was a stumbling to the Jew, and foolishness to the Grecians; The Head-corner-stone whom the Jews refused, whom the Gentiles trampled under their feet: against whom both Jews and Gentiles banded themselves. So the Apostle Peter observes the Prophecy, and concludes by proof and experience and accomplishment of it. Act. 4.24, 25, 26, 27. Lord thou art God, which hast made Heaven and Earth, and the Sea, and al that in them is, who by the mouth of thy servant David hast said, why did the Heathen rage and the people imagine a vain thing? The Kings of the Earth stood up, and the rulers [Page 57]were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ: for of a truth, against thy holy Child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the people of Israel were gathered together, &c. Let us break their bonds, and cast their cords away. I know not the Lord, saies Pharaoh. We know that God spake unto Moses: as for this fellow, (so contemptuously they spake of Jesus) we know not whence he is. Joh. 9.29. The Jews had certain questions against Paul, saies Festus, and of one Jesus. Act. 25.19. And the whol rabble cry out, Away with him, from the earth: not him, but Barabbas.

And yet when the prayer of our Savior shal attain his end, in the hearts of the Faithful, so that they shal be wholly carried to God in Christ, by the immutable as­sistance of his Spirit, their hearts kept with him, their graces acted upon him, themselves quickned by him, for ever: then al these, wil they, nil they, shal by a constraint be forced to acknowledg, their own consciences wil yield it, and their mouths confess it, at the day of Judgment; That Christ was the true Messias, sent by the Father, and that he hath fully accomplished the great work of salvation, for the good of his. And God only shal be exalted in that day.

There be two particulars in the words. We shall open all, and handle that which is the main.

  • 1. Christ is sent by God the Father.
  • 2. God will have this beleeved by the ungodly;

Which will be, when the Saints attain this unity here prayd for, then Christ will attain this glory.

To the First.

That Christ is sent by God the Father for the Re­demption of his. It needs no further witness to settle it, the words are so express. We will a little open it that as it is true, so it may be plain and evident, and so much the rather, because our Savior laies so great a weight [Page 58]upon it and bestows the very strength of his prayer in the first place, for the attainement of the acknowledgment thereof. And to speak once for all,

  • 1. What the word & the weight of the phrase carries.
  • 2. In what regard our Savior is said to be sent.
  • 3. Wherein this sending lies.

1. The word sending, or as the Latin phrase hath it, Mission, carries ever two things in it.

  • 1. The Authority of him that sends, in respect of the party that is sent: but it is not the authority of domi­nion and rule so much, as that Authority of order or communication of a work from one unto another. And in this sence, he only can be said to be sent, who works from another, and works not originally from himself.
  • 2. It implies a new act or impression upon the crea­ture, whereby it hath it's self in some other frame or dis­position than formerly.

Take it in this breadth and extent, you shal find, that in scripture, the Son and holy Spirit are only said to be sent, and it is never attributed to the Father. Gal. 4.4. God sent his son. Joh. 15.26. But when the Comforter shall come, whom I will send unto you from the Father. And this cannot be any created Grace or work, for the words following determine that full. The Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father. Joh. 14.20. But the Comforter, which is the holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name.

When-ever then the action with the manner also from such a person, are comprehended in this sending; It is [...] given to, or affirmed of the Father: because it sig [...]ie not an act only expressed by a person, but an [...] from a person in such a manner, as that he hath Au­ [...]y in way of order originally to act before another at the least: And the other to act from him.

But because the Father cannot act from the Son and [Page 59]Holy Ghost: but both Son and Holy Ghost, they do not act only, but act in their order and manner from ano­ther; the Son from the Father, and the Holy Ghost from both: therefore they are truly said to be sent.

But if they look at the act only, which is expressed upon the creature, then this sending is, and ought to be given to all the presons. As the Incarnation of our Savior is one thing in his sending. Therefore those two are joined. God sent his Son made of a Woman, as made, so sent: and herein the Holy Ghost had a hand, whether we look at the sanctification of the seed in the Womb, or the uniting of it to the second person. There al the persons work. So likewise in the dispensation of the office of our Savior, in his whol proceeding, the works of the Holy Ghost went along. Isa. 61. The Spirit of God was upon me, he sent me to preach, and he preached and performed all those great works by the strength and operation of his spirit.

2. In what regard our Savior is said to be sent.

Not as the second person in the glorious Trinity, where­by, he is God blessed for ever, equal with the Father: for so the Apostle professeth Phil. 2.6. Being in the form of God, thought it no robbery to be equal with God, i.e. Had the glory of the Deity truly appertain­ing to him, and the God-Head dwelling in him, and knew his own worth and right; therefore willingly sub­mitted himself to that Under-condition, not by con­straint, for he wel understood what his due was.

But as he was God and man, and assumed our Nature, and became mediator in our Room and stead. So he professeth of himself: That his Father is greater than he. As he took upon him the forme of a servant, became our surety, and came in the similitude of sinful flesh, yet without sin. Joh. 14.28. In his voluntary and free dispensation, as he was willing to take our flesh, and dwel thereby amongst us, so is he inferiour to himself, as [Page 60]God, and so to his Father. And yet take the work it self, and the manner of the work, as it was explicated before, and the phrase of sending implies; he is only sent of the Father. But look at the work Earely, he may be said to be sent by all: but that is unusual, nay in open phrase never to be found in Scripture, because the word comes not in that sense to our view.

As he becomes to take our Nature, so he was sent. But as Son, by eternal generation, he is made fit to take our Nature. And therefore it is; the assuming of Human Nature is made a propriety, a thing peculiar to the second person; Insomuch, that it is heresie to say, the Father was incarnate, or the Holy Ghost incar­nate.

What ever appertaines to our Savior, as the second person, and as the Son of the Father; that he had by eternal generation, and in a peculiar manner from the Father. But as second person, he assumes, and so is sent, and dispenseth the work of our Redemption. Therefore so far he is in a peculiar manner sent from the Father: and in this sense, he is never said to be sent, but from the Father in the Verdict of Scripture.

2. As he assumes and becomes incarnate, so is our Nature taken into personal union with the second per­son, so far is it advanced, and hath a priviledg and liberty to use any Attribute, so far he sends the spirit, even the Holy Ghost from the Father, and dispenseth al power from the Father, by the spirit for the Good of his. And therefore so far he doth al in al, as he is sent from the Father in a peculiar manner.

In a word, hence it appears, that the work of incarna­tion, as he took our Nature, the work of dispensation in sending the spirit, & appointing al Officers, & Offices & ordinances, and accompanying and blessing all for good: Issues in a peculiar manner from this his sending from the Father. Which the wicked world doth not see, will not acknowledg, cannot submit unto, but they shal one day be forced unto it.

Hence it is, our Savior alwaies professeth, he doth al, as sent. Joh. 5.36. Arms himself by his sending a­gainst al. Joh. 10.36. Looks wholly and only at that work, for which he was sent. Joh. 5.30. And generally all runs upon this string, comforts all from his sending. As my Father sent me. So I send you; shews the greatness of their sin, that oppose him, He that despiseth me, despiseth him that sent me.

3. Wherein this sending consists: look at the work of it.

Answer in four things.

1. He is appointed and set apart to this great imploy­ment and Ambassage. Joh. 6.27. For him hath God the Father sealed. Jsa. 49.5. I have formed thee from the Womb, to be my servant, to bring Jacob again. And verse, 6.—That thou maist be my Salvation to the end of the Earth.

He is now in Gods counsel and everlasting decree designed to this so great a work, and in his season called out to the execution, sent from his Bosom abroad into this world, to act the great affaires of Gods everlasting purposes, touching the recovery of man.

2. The Father committed this so great a work unto his care and trust, and laid it upon him as his charge, which by mutual consent and convenant he willingly un­dertook. Joh. 6.39. This is my Fathers will that hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me, I should lose none, but should raise it up at the last day. And therefore adds verse, 40. He that beleeves in me. Shall have everlasting life and I will raise him up at the last day. Yea he gives up his account of his work. John. 17.12. Those that thou hast given me, I have kept, and lost none. And therefore compares himself to the good Shepherd, that layes down his self for his Sheep. Joh. 10.

3. Gives him ful commission for the accomplishment of this work unto the ful, even as he is the Son of man; [Page 62]hath given right and liberty to the humane Nature of ours now received into personal union, to use and improve any of the Attributes of the Deity, for the further bene­fit of the Saints, the good of his Church, and the fur­therance of those spiritual ends, which may best [...]et for­wards the glory of God, and the everlasting wellfare of his people.

This so wonderful a union doth advantage the Humane Nature to so high a priviledg, to use al the excellencies of the Deity, at al times, answerable to al necessities, to fetch supply suitable, to the wants, desires, comforts of the Saints. This is the meaning of those places. Math. 28.18. All power is given to me in Heaven and in Earth. To have al power, it to be Omnipotent, for more than all cannot be conceived no [...] possessed: more than that, God hath not: and that because it is an in-communicable Attribute, he cannot communicate: but the meaning is; though it be not omnipotent, yet it hath liberty to set that on work, for the benefit and best good of Gods servants.

Hence, what the Father doth, the son is said to do also. Joh. 5.26. As the Father hath life in himself, so hath he given to the son to have life in himself. Verse, 19. What ever things he doth, those the son doth likewise: for as the Father raiseth up the dead, even so he. Joh. 17.2. Thou hast given him power over all Flesh, to give unto them eternal life. He that must rescue them from Hel, and sin, and death, and from divine Justice, he must have power over al: That the power in Heaven, may not prejudice and frustrate the work: in Hel hinder it: on earth oppose it.

4. The Father leaves the immediate dispensation of al the work unto him, to act it, according to his own plea­sure. For so our Savior, As the Father raiseth, and quickeneth, so the son quickeneth whom he will. Joh. 5.21: And adds verse, 22. For the Father judgeth no [Page 63]man: but hath committed al judgment to the son. Not that the Father hath not power for the execution of the work. For he that gives it, hath it in a principal and soveraign manner. But he hath committed the imme­diate execution thereof unto the Lord Jesus, and so of the whol work of our Redemption. Joh. 5.27. That (as Pharaoh said concerning Joseph, when he appointed him next unto himself in the kingdom of Egipt Gen. 41.40,44. I am Pharaoh, and without thee, shall no man lift up his hand or foot) no man shal do any thing, which way so ever he turn himself &c. Only I am Pharaoh; So the Father to Christ, he delegates the execution of al in Heaven and Earth unto him, only he is greater. This is the meaning of that place. 1 Cor. 11.3. I would have you know, that the Head of every man is Christ, the head of the Woman is the man, and the head of Christ is God. Whence know,

1. That the Apostle speaks not only of faithful men and Women, but of al men and Women according to their sex. For the scope is to shew that Women should be subject, not only gracious, but al. And this he shews from the feebleness and underness of their Nature and sex.

2. That these different degrees of excellency are only to be attended in regard of subordination, in order one to another, and immediate dispensation from one to an­other; for that Head implies, not only excellency and dignity, in the general, but power to move al, in sub­ord nation to it; authority to rule all in subjection [...] So that, it is not excellency, but power and [...]: and that not at large, for so Angels are the [...] of men; but as they be in subordination, and not [...] [...]ch, as be far removed, but such as have the next [...] dispensation, in way of providence, [...]e [...]ch [...]ver other. For otherwise, Christ is head, not of [...], but of Woman and Angels also: so God him­self is.

But the Apostles meaning and intent was, to shew, the orderly and next dispensation in the several degrees: the immediate influence and dispensation of power and au­thority for the ruling of the femal sex, is in a way of providence and appointment from man: the immediate dispensation of power to man is from Christ: to Christ from God the Father, who hath sent him. And thus Christ is, and doth to al: only distinguishing the manner and end of his dispensation, To the wicked in way of Justice, for their ruine and destruction: To the godly in way of mercy for their spiritual good. That's the meaning of that, All is yours &c. And hence the Apostle 1 Cor. 15.24, 28. Christ is said (when he hath conquered al enemies, the last is death; damned all the wicked and delivered up is Children into the hands of his Father) he then is said: To deliver up his Kingdom to the Father, i.e. Only in regard of this outward dis­pensation. For then God the Father shal, in and through Christ, communicate himself to all his Saints.

Use. 1.

We have here matter of wonderment at the Rich and unconceiveable compassion of the Father to miserable undone man: who should be careful to provide for his good, who is so negligent to provide for his own? Spares nothing [...]o purchase his Salvation, who hath done what he can to destroy himself. Had he sent the meanest of his creatures to succour us, his servants to visit us, his Angels to administer to us, it had been more, than we could have expected: But to send his Son out of his own Bosom, yea out of his own Bowels, to work out our Redemption, to make known the way of life, and and to make it good unto our Souls; Nature would not do this, reason cannot reach this mercy, the heart would not dare to beg this. Sit we down in the everlasting admiration of his mercy. As Elizabeth and Mary, [Page 65]when he came to visit her, Luk. 1.43. Whence comes it that the mother of my Lord should come to me? So thou. As David, when he attended the dealing of the Lord towards lost man, who had made himself the most vile and forlorn of al his creatures; looks upon his own baseness and Gods kindness. Lord what is man, that thou shouldest be mindfull of him, and the Son of man thou shouldest regard him? So: What is man? so base, so sinful, so vile, so miserable. As Saul, who ever found his enemy and slue him not? but who ever found his enemy, and sent his Son to him?

Use 2.

Comfort to bear up the fainting hearts of the Saints amidst al the corruptions that annoy, temptations that oppose, feebleness and difficulties that discourage: why, yet Christ is sent for the work, who is furnished with al sufficiency to do it. He hath laid salvation upon one that is mighty. Mighty pride, mighty distempers to foil thee, mighty temptations to assault thee, mighty allurements in the world to intangle thee. Why here is Salvation upon one that is mighty to save free, and deli­ver thee. Hither Paul retires, and strengthens himself. 2 Tim. 1.12. I know whom I have beleeved; when I am not able to resist or vanquish, Christ is able, and nothing ever miscarried, that was committed to his care. All power in Heaven and Earth is committed into his had.

Use 3. Of Direction, • How to expect all from God. , and • How to go to God for all. 

1. Expect all from God in Christ. Eph. 1.3 &c. blesseth us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places [Page 66]in him, Adopts us in him, makes us accepted in him God was in Christ reconciling the world.

2. Go to God for al in Christ. In the performances of al Duties, in the use of al Ordinances go to Christ first, and then to the Father. As its true, the Father judg­eth no man, so he comforts, quickens, sanctifies no man: but hath committed al unto his Son. Christ is the Fathers Almner, and to him we must repaire, if we desire to share in the bounty of the Father. He is that Joseph. Gen. 41.44, 45. If the Son make you free, ye shal be free indeed. Joh. 8.30. If he comfort, ye shal be comforted indeed.

Therefore do three things.

  • 1. Be Dex [...]rous in our apprehensions to see the foot­steps of our Savior and be so wel acquainted with his passages, that we may perceive his whispers and know him at a turn, though we [...]ee but his back parts.
  • 2. Use no meanes nor entertain any, but such as come by his own appointment. Because those that come not from him, lead not to him. Col. 2.10. We stand complete in him. Math. 17.5. Hear him, and none but him. As the Prophet to the King of Judah, Go not with the King of Israel, for God is not with him. So, go not out in the use of such means, for God is not in them.
  • 3. Look at him, as sent on purpose for this work Joh. 6.26. This is the work of God, that ye beleeve on him, whom the Father hath sent. This answers all. If the Father appoint him, who shal gainsay? It the Son hath undertaken it, how can it fail? If al power be in his hand, who shal hinder? If all the execution be in his hand, there wil be no miscarriage.

We have dispach't the first. The second now follows. Viz. That God will have this beleeved by the ungodly world. And its possible they may, when the Saint at­tain this unity, Christ shall attain this glory even from the wicked, that they shall acknowledg his call and com­mission, [Page 67]and so execution of this work of our Redemp­tion.

For the explication hereof we may inquire;

  • 1. What it meant by world.
  • 2. How they are said to beleeve.
  • 3. What do they beleeve in the sending of Christ, for which our Savior so praise, and at which he so aimes.

1. WORLD here] not to trouble with any thing Impertinent or superfluous, i [...] is put for the WICKED of the world, who have their hearts, in­heritance, and happiness here, therefore go no higher, look of further.

So ye shall find the word used in this Chap. verse 9. I pray for them, I pray not for the world: where the op­position gives the true sense & explication of the word: they are here distinguished and differenced from those that were given to Christ, and to whom he hath given his word, and hearts to beleeve, and to whom he gave eternal life. The like ye have, 1 Joh. 5.4. We know that we are of God, and the whol world lieth in wick­edness. Where those two are put in opposition, to be of God, begotten of God, called to be Saints, out of the world. But those that are not begotten of God they are made up, as it were, of worldly principles, and they keep and take up their abode in wickedness, they are brought to bed in it.

And thus wicked men are stiled from three grounds.

1. Because the God of this world rules in them. 2 Cor. 4.4. i.e. Satan, whose abode and habitation is in this visible world: for where the Devils are cast, there is Hell, but hither they are cast, into the Air, the prince of the Air. Eph. 2.2. He compasseth the Earth to and fro, Job. 1. And somtimes he hurries into the great deep. God hath given him a commission in his Justice, to exercise a Soverainty over the wicked, and to use all these earthly and worldly things, as baits, to take [Page 68]them at his will; and he never fails. With honor, he catcheth the ambitious; with wealth the c [...]ve [...]cus; And they acknowledg no God but Sa [...]an in these, carried and taken aside by his temptations and overpowred by his allurements when he wil.

2. They are acted by the Spirit of the world. And therefore the Apostle puts these two in opposition. 1 Cor. 2.12. We have not received the Spirit of the world, but the Spirit of God. As the [...]ons of God are led by the Spirit of God, who works mightily in them that beleeve: So wicked men are acted by the Spirit of the world. Now that which gives life and being to the world, as it is in opposition to God, is vanity and emp­tiness, vanity and emptiness perverted. inordinate or Exorbitant; vanity running wry from the command of God, and cross to the fear of God. Emptiness and weakness of the creature captivating the Soul under its command, and carrying of it according to its will; Its the Spirit of the world. 1 Joh. 2.16. The lust of the Eves carry all away. Thus the Prophet; Wine and Women take away the heart. Hos. 4.11.

3. They take contentment in the things of the world, and there they take up their stand, set up their rest. They are called, the men of the Earth, and lay up their treasures here on Earth. Ps. 17.14. Mind earthly things. Philip. 3.19. Here they are in their Element, like fish in the Water; and some conceive and not im­probably, that the Psalmist aimed at some such thing. The Heavens are the Lords, but the Earth he hath given to the sons of men. Psal. 115.16. By Earth is meant all these visible things, which they who live by sense, set up as their Gods, serve and worship them. The heaven is Gods throne, where no unclean thing comes, but the Earth, these visible things, where wicked men have sinned, and by their sins have polluted, they are now contented with them, and they shal be plagued by them; therefore its said: God fil [...]s their Bellies with his [Page 69]hid Treasures, the things of this world, which are in Gods store-house, and he hath a hidden dispensation of them. These are the diet of wicked men: they have not the hid manna, spiritual food to refresh them.

If the God of the world rule them: The Spirit of the world act them: The things of the world content them: Then are they truly said to be World.


Before we pass, let us make some use of this; That wicked men are worldly men; and hence we may dis­cover our condition and take a trial of our estate, whe­ther carnal or spiritual, whether gracious or wicked; look what it is that carries thee, what it is that contents thee. Are these worldly things great in thine Eye, and in thy apprehension and approbation: dost thou center thy self upon these, satisfiest thou thy self with these? be­leeve it thou art of the world, and shalt perish with the world. So our Savior. Joh. 3.31. He that is of the Earth is earthly, and speaketh of the Earth. It is his Nature and he doth his Nature: his actions manifest his disposition, we judg ever the Nature and quality of the thing by its motion & place whither it tends. Light things wil ascend, and never stay, ti [...] they come to the place, their Nature desires: heavy things descend downward, and they wil not stay before they come thither. See thou the po [...]se of thy spirit, the motion and inclination of the heart, whither it goes naturally, and where it would be, if it be there where it desires, and where it rests, if left unto it self. If the weight of thy thoughts and desires carry thee freely and strongly after the lust of thine Eyes, the lust of thy flesh, and stop it doth not, stay it would not, before it be there. Thy heart is on the Earth, and thou art a Citizen on Earth, and thou hast thy portion on this Earth: thou hast no Heaven in thee to this day, and thou shalt never come to Heaven.

It skills not, that thou mee [...]est somtimes with the things of Grace and life, thy speeches, thy conference, [Page 70]thy carriages, and thy actions, meddle now and then, and converse with the things of Heaven and happiness: because they be such as come in thy way, and will keep thee company, if not beyond thy expectation, yet be­yond thy desire.

The Traveiler passeth by many countries, baits at many places but he takes not up his abode and rest, be­fore he come to his own Country and own home, and there he stayes: That shews he is that Country man.

Thou mayest in thy travel meddle with the heavenly ordinances of God, take up holy duties in thy course, and bait thy self in such performances, as may maintain either quiet within, or credit without, amongst men. Oh! but which is thy home, wither thy heart and desires are going, and wil not rest, before they repair thither? thou seekest God to serve thine own turn, tou­chest at holy courses, to take in fresh comfort, incou­ragements &c. But thy heart is not at home, before it can satisfie it self in the pursuit and possession of worldly things. The God of the world rules thee, the spirit of the world leads thee, the things of the world content thee, when thou art there, thou art in thy Element: when drawn from thence, thou art dragd like Fish out of the Water, much a-do to live: That is thy condi­tion.

Its possible for a heavy thing by a strong hand, to be held from descending downward: but leave it to it self, thou shalt easily see, whether it be its place, or suitable to its inclination, it moves immediately downwards. Your Sea-horses and Crocodils go somtimes ashore for their prey: but because they retire and take up their abode in the Waters, we therefore know, they are Sea, not Land-creatures. So its possible, to seek a prey, i.e. For thine own ease or praise, thou mayst put to the per­formances of holy duties: or happily, either com­pany, place, persons, the lawes, or ordinances [Page 71]hold thee by strong hand, and-force thee to a shew of zealous profession. But when these poises are plucked away: mark what thy Soul before desired inwardly, what it now wil into of it self: If to the world, and the vanities thereof, thou art a worldly man to this day. Hence it is, that many in these places drop away, and fall hand-pat to the world, after a long profession of a heavenly life. These earthly, heavy Souls would have been at their center long before, but there were some impe­diments in their way, that stopped their proceeding: Wheras, if the heart be heavenly, it rests not before it come thither. Psal. 42. Oh when shall I appeare be­fore the living God? many say, who will shew us any good? but Lord lift thou up the light of thy countenance. And the Apostle concludes it. Coloss. 3.1. If ye be risen with Christ, seek the things that are above, ye ought to do so, and ye will do so. The Apostle Issues both the parts, with the grounds of them. 1 Cor. 15. 48. The first Adam is from the Earth, earthly: the second Adam is the Lord from Heaven: As we have born the image of the earthly, so shal we bear the image of the Heavenly. Yea our Savior concludes it, They are not of this world, as I am not of the world. As he by the power of his God-Head, took our Nature to him­self, by the power of the fame God-Head, he takes our Souls to himself, carries them to himself, acts them upon himself, keeps them with himself.

2. How the world are said to beleeve Christs sending.

Answ. It cannot be meant of saving Faith the faith of Gods Elect, or that Faith, by which we beleeve unto Sal­vation: for that Faith which is here meant, wicked men should, and its certain sooner or later they shal attain, for its that which the Father intends and aims at, and our Savior Christ looked at, as his scope in his prayer: and we know that the Father never fails to accomplish what he intends, nor our Savior to attain what he prayes for. But this our Savior aimes at in his praier, as one princi­pal scope and end of it.

There is therefore in the second place, a Faith which doth belong even to the wicked, which is truly termed or called Faith in the language of the Scripture, and the common speech of men, I say truly called Faith though i [...] be not truly saving. Joh. 12.42, 43. Many beleeved on him, but durst not confess him, for they loved the pra [...]e [...]f men, mo [...]e than of God. The [...]e is saith then: and men do also beleeve, who love the praise of men more, than of God: but this no man can do and beleeve savingly. Joh. 5.44. How can ye beleeve, which rece [...]ve honor one of another and seek not the honor that cometh from God only? Joh. 2.23, 24. Many beleeve in him, But our Savior did not commit himself unto them for he well knew, what was in man. And its notorious in the parable of the stony ground, which beleeved for a time but in the time of temptation went away.

The Question grows, What is this Faith, which is so stiled in the phrase of Scripture.

Answ. I suppose it includes two things mainly.

  • 1. When the understanding meets with and gives en­tertainment to the evidence of that truth, that is now pre­sented to its view: but that is not al, that it comprehends the compass of the truth that comes to considereation, but that it is so far setled by force of argument that doth confirm it, that it fully assents and subsc [...]bes thereunto. For the force of argument begets this human Faith and a ful and unquestionable assurance of the conclusion. This is that the Apostle means Rom. 14. And the last, when the understanding neither doubts the certainty, nor mistakes the truth, but is carried sul sail in assent.
  • 2. The evidence or this truth, thus understood, is of that power and prevailing efficacy, that it carries a kind of command and control with it, it soakes into the con­science, sets down that, and convinceth it, that consci­ence gives in its verdict that way. It proceeds yet fur­ther, sets upon the wil with that forcible and u [...]deniable [Page 73]evidence, that it awes it, and brings it to yield thus far, that its true in the general, but that its either not her pleasure and so not her good to submit to it, but only for some turn, for her own ends, but not in uprightness, and for it self. Joh. 3.8. When Jonah had denoun­ced the judgment of God against Nineveh, Its said, The beleeved the word of the Lord. Not that they did do that savingly, for its spoken of the whol Body of the people, who were yet heathenish: but that they did without question assent to the truth of the message, their consciences were so far convinced, and their hearts so far awed, that they did yield it was certain it would come. And both these are here understood, and intended by our Savior; that they whose judgments, consciences, hearts were not setled, convinced, nor yet perswaded, that our Savior was sent, They might be brought to be­leeve.
  • 3. What the world shall thus beleeve touching Christs sending?

Answ. Our Savior looks at three things.

  • 1. That he had the right of Commission delivered by the Father into his hand, to attend this work, as being in especial manner appointed and designed thereunto. Joh. 6.27.
  • 2, That he had fulness of Power, of dispensation of this, not only called, but authori [...]ed, enabled, and fur­nished with al power and Grace, and that beyond mea­sure, for the discharge and performance of this weighty change; as to be the Salvation of God, unto the ends of the Earth.
  • 3. That he hath not only undertaken it, but fully, in all particulars, accomplished that, for which he was thus designed and also furnished from God the Father Joh. 17.4. I have finished the work thou gavest me to do. For these are the three main difficulties, where the corrupt hearts of men come off most hardly, and about which they make heaviest opposition against the [Page 74]greatest work of our Redemption.

Thus the Scribes and Pharisees were ready to quarrel his calling:Joh. 7.42. The Messias when he comes &c. But this man, whence he is, we know not. Joh. 9.29. God spake by Moses, but whence this man comes; We know not. And when the Blind man seemed but to speak favorably in this point; certainly, no man could do such and such thing [...], unless God had sent him, They could not bear it. Joh. 9.33, 34.

Again that he had no sufficiency in any seeming ap­pearance for such and so weighty imployment: and therefore they vilified his person, and looked at his speeches as so many vain glorious expressions, which had neither truth not sufficiency to maintain. And therefore when our Savior told them, he would give his flesh for the sins of his Elect, They murmur immediately, as though this were a deceipt. How can this man give us his Flesh &c. Joh. 6.41, 52. Is not this Jesus the Son of Joseph, whose Father and Mother we know? verse, 42. How is it that he saith, I came down from Heaven?

Lastly, for the ful recovery, there the Sons of men are so fickle and slippery, that they are ready to step aside, and at least ful of question and therefore his own, after he was condemned, Crucified and Buried, Luk. 24.21. They began to stagger in their own thoughts. We had thought in had be [...]n he, that should have deliver­ed &c. And no [...] behold this is the third day. Now this our Savior wisheth; that they might be brought to the acknowledgment of the light of his commission, the po [...]e [...] of his dispensation, the certain and through ful­filling of all that was committed to him, and that he un­dertook.

The Reasons are,

1. Hereby the honor of the Father and so of the Son, [Page 75]is at once and together most gloriously advanced. For the Sovereignty of the power of the Father and incom­prehensible and unconceivable love, the infinit depth of his Grace and mercy, are manifested in sending.

That surpassing glory, unto which the human Nature of our Savior was advanced, to be invested with his power and authority, to be berr [...]sted with this work, and to be taken, as it were, into Par [...]neship with the Father, for the accomplishment, of that, which was far greater than the creating of millions of worlds.

That it should be in the liberty of the human Nature, to use al the Attributes of God, for the good of his Church, and to dispense all by his own hand, So that nothing should be done but by Christ: nothing receiv­ed but through Christ from the Father; here the crown of al glory is set upon the Father & the Son at once. This is the scope of that dispute and the ground of this dispen­sation. Joh. 5.18, 19. What the Father doth; that he doth; and that, because he hath shewed him all things, and he wil shew him greater than those, that ye may wonder &c. For as he shal raise up the dead, So the Son shal quicken whom he wil. The end is, That al men may honor the Son, as they honor the Father: and he that honoreth not the Son, honoreth not the Father. There is no re­ceiving any thing from God, but by him. No returning any thing to God, but through him. Thus ye shal find the honor of both stand and fal together. Math. 10.40. He that receiveth me, receiveth him that sent me Luk. 10.16. He that despiseth me, despiseth him, that sent me.

2. Hereby the great work of our Redemption comes to be discovered, comes also to be acknowledged; when once this sending our Savior is rightly understood. Its the very Hinge upon which the Gospel turns: The very foundation, upon which the work of our Salvation hangs. before this we are said to be in bondage under rudiments. In the fullness of time God sent forth his. [Page 76]Son, made of a Woman, made under the Law, to re­deem those that were under the Law. Gal. 4.4. Joh. 1.18. No man hath seen God at any time, but the only begotten Son, which came out of the Bosom of the Fa­ther he hath revealed him. Eph. 3.7, 8, 9. to the 20. Here is the great mystery of Godliness, Christ manifested in the flesh. 1. Tim. 3.6.

3. That hereby al mouths might be stopped, and the wicked might be made beyond excuse. Joh. 15.22. If I had not come, and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin.


1. Of Exhortation, That our practise should concur with the prayer of our Savior his desire and our indea­vor. That we should put forth the utmost of our skil and care; that our savior may be acknowledged by all hearts, confessed by al Tongues, as sent of God. We should pomo [...]e and help forwards this.

This is Gods main work in the waies of his providence and all his dispensations in the world and in the Church. Psal. 2.6. Yet I have set my King upon my holy Hill of Sion; in despite of al the wrath and rage of Heathens, Pilate, Jews &c.

So let us set him up as King in al the minds of men, that they may know, in all consciences, that they may con­fess him. This Paul indeavoured, Rom. 15.19. He made the Gospel of Christ to sound out from Jerusalem to Illiricum, and strove to preach the Gospel, that to whom he was not spoken of, they should see. So Act. 2.36.

This Paul rejoyced in. Philip. 1.18. If Christ be preached any way, he doth and will rejoyce in it.

Verse, 22.

And the glory which thou gavest me, I have given them, that they may be one, even as we are one.

THe Nature of this oneness, and the end why it is, and was so earnestly preyed for by our Savior, we have spoken to both these, in the foregoing verse.

In this we have the means set forth unto us, by which they should be in­abled to attain the end, and our Savior plainly expresseth himself, That he hath given them his glory, which he hath himself received, that they might attain this so great a priviledg.

Here we have three things to be attended.

  • 1. What it is our Savior hath received.
  • 2. What it is he doth communicate.
  • 3. The end why.

1. Touching the former of these; two words are to be opened, that we may understand the sense of the Spirit, and the several truths therein contained.

  • 1. What is meant by Glory.
  • 2. In what regard our Savior may be said to receive, [Page 78]it, and how God the Father gave it him.

1. GLORY Somtimes [...]gnifies that unconceiveable excellency of al that incomprehensible worth and infi­nite goodness, that is in the Lord, which is Gods pecu­liar, and Prerogative Royal, as onely appertaining to him, who is the first cause and the last end: and there­fore as he is the author of all, because they come from him, so he is the good of al, because al [...]end to him.

The shine and lus [...]e of al those glorious Attributes of the Lord meeting together in that infinite fulness, as they be in him, like the beauty of so many thousand Suns in the Firmament, that is called, the GLORY of GOD, with which the Eyes of blessed Angels are dazelled, as not able to behold it, and therefore cover their faces. Isa. 6. Instead of comprehending, falling into admi­ration of it. Thus it is used in verse, 4. of this Chap. Joh. 17. Father I have glorified thee on Earth; now glorifie me with thy self, with that glory, which I had with thee before the world was. Therefore it must be, before his human Nature was, and so it must be that which doth in a peculiar manner appertain unto him, as God. But this cannot be meant in this place.

For that glory is here meant, which is given by our Savior, unto his faithful ones.

But the glory which is the Prerogative of the Deity, he professeth, he will not give unto another. Isa. 42.8. Therefore this is not intended.

2. GLORY Is put in phrase of Scripture for Grace, whether attended in the entrance and beginnings of it here on Earth: or in the consummation and perfecti­on of it in the highest Heaven. Because there is the greatest worth in it, greatest beauty Issues from it, the greatest esteem and highest account is acknowledged to be due thereunto by those who can judg.

This glorious Grace is called Glory, as that which is attended and accompanied with it; as the Body with the shadow, the Sun with the shine and light: yea that [Page 79]supream excellency, with which the Saints shal be crow­ned in Heaven, is northing Els but Grace attaining its ful consummation, So that the odds is not in the kind, but in the degree only; and therefore we are sa [...]d to be blessed in heavenly places, and to si [...] together with Christ in heavenly places. Eph. 1.3. and 2.6.

Here is the suburbs of happiness, and of the New Jerusalem. Grace is the Porch, as it were, Glory the Palace. Thus ye shall find it. Rom. 3.23. But it is most pregnant and very remarkable. 2. Cor. 3.18. We all with open face, as in a Glass, behold the glory of God, and are translated or changed (we are transformed, or have a new form or frame set upon us) from glory to glory, as by the Spirit of the Lord.

The Glass is the Lord Christ, in whom the Glory of the Grace of God is imprinted, and by whom, and through whom, it is dispensed and communicated to us, that we not only receive, but increase in this Glorious Grace from one degree thereof unto another; And that by the Holy Spirit of the Lord.

Both these are here understood: Grace in the begin­ing of it, and that especially and Firstly: yet not ex­cluding the perfection of it, For our Savior speaks of it, as a thing certain to himself, and that which wil assured­ly also accrew to his, nay which they have now in the kind of it.

Hence, before we pass; we may learn how to judg of true Glory, and how to attain it.

1 How to judg of true Glory, that which wil go for currant in the Court of Heaven, and in the account of the Almighty; to-wit.

Its not what the folly of mens minds doth conceit, or the breath of the world would advance, or the pride and ignorance of the most do take and admire as glorious, that wil indeed give in evidence sufficient to pass a righteous Sentence in this behalf.

Its not the wealth and riches of the world, be they [Page 80]never so great, revenues never so fair and beautiful; though thy friends, alliance and acquaintance be never so many and high, wil ad any glory to thee in truth, or in the account of Christ.

If thou hast a base heart, leadest a graceless life, thou art a base man, and a base woman. Thy Favourites may flatter thee, and friends applaud thee, and thy neighbors speak wel of thee: but thou art abhorred of the Lord, art loathed of the Saints, that can tel how to judg. Psal. 15. In whose eyes a vile person is despi­sed. If thou beest a wicked man, a vicious, proud, stubborn, froward person, truly thou art a vile person; and it a note of him, that wil enter into God Taberna­cle and dwel in his Holy Hil, that he should despise thee as such: though thou hadst never so much of al this earthly pomp the world can afford. Dross is base though it be kept in the best place of the treasury: Copper is yet vile and worthless, though it be set upon the highest place of the Cupboard, and not only man should so judg but God wil. The froward in spirit is abomination unto the Lord.

Nay though thy place and priviledges be never so high and great, they indeed may be glorious, as having some impression of Gods power and authority painted upon them, but yet, if thy heart be void of Grace, and thy life of Holiness; Thou art wholly destitute of any true glory. Thy place and the impression of Gods power must be honoured in thee, bu [...] thy self art despicable and worthless, as that King Jehoram that died undefired. 2, Chro. 21.20.

2. We here see the ready way, and the Kings road in which we must walk, if we would be truly glorious in the eyes of wise, and in the account of our Savior, that we may be sure to get such glory, as wil go in Heaven. Be truly, savingly gracious: then art thou truly glorious in the account of the Almighty, and shalt be received into glory when this life shal not be. But they must be grace of [Page 81]the right make, and true stamp, issuing from the glori­ous spirit of the Lord. Its not any of those counterfeits of morality & civillity which carry a meer shew of God­lyness, without the power of it: nor yet the Gilt, (as I may so cal it) of those higher Stroaks of Illuminations, which appertaines to Apostates, of whom the Apostle faith. That they tasted of the Heavenly gift and the good word of the Lord, and of the powers of the world to come: this is hansome gilt, and yet the heart base and leud, therefore miserable; therefore I ad that which fol­lowes of the Apostle and ye should ad it also, We hope better things of you, and those that accompany Salva­tion, not gilt in appearance, but true Gold in the substance of it: not the [...]ast of these, but the truth of these, somthing better than astonishing terrors, than fleshy and groundless inlightenings and raptures; better humiliati­ons, better evidences, better and more real expressions of the power and conquering vertue of the saving work of God. The Church is said to be al glorious within Psal. 45. The workmanship of God, created unto good works Eph. 2. would ye then be glorious servants in the fami­lies wherein ye dwel? glorious Inhabitants in the Plan­tations where ye live? glorious members of Churches and Congregations? and leave your names for a glory and blessing behind you? Do not catch at a shadow, but get the body, and that wil not fade away: do not thing to keep the light in the room and shut out the Sun-beames, or let the candle be carried away.

Be truly vertuous, and it cannot be but glory wil be thy companion; and that in the very consciences of the wicked, though their mouthes, it may be, wil be-ly their Consciences for to maintain their own wayes. So it was with David. 2 Sam. 6: 21.22. When he dan­ced before the Lord, Michal conceited, he laid open himself unto contempt; How glorious was the King this day, &c. He answers: I [...] was before the Lord that I did it: and if this be to be vile I wil be yet more [Page 82]vile and even of these Hand-maids I shal be had in hanor. Lively faith is called Precious Faith. 2. Pet. 1.6. Hebr. 11.4. By faith Abel offered a more ex­cellent sacrifice than Cain.

Would ye therefore pray more excellently, hear more excellently, confer more excellently, than al the carnal men in the world? get this Precious Faith, then ye wil be Precious Christians, and have precious com­forts.

2. How our Savior received this.

Answ. He received this Grace as man, not as God, or as the second person properly, for so he is equal to the Father, and hath equal propriety in al the Attributes of the God-Head. Besides, the Grace here is that which is given to beleevers: but so that cannot be.

He receives it therefore as man and that by gift, saith the Text, for our Savior acknowledgeth it.

1. It is Given by the Grace of personal Union, in that it pleased God the Father, that the second person, his be­loved son, should take our Nature into personal Union, so that though he was a perfect person before that was assumed, yet he remained one and the same person after it was assumed; there he two Natures, but one person still.

Thus the Apostle disputes, and the connection im­plyes so much. Col. 1.15. He is the image of the Invisible God (i. e. as second person,) and so in him all things consist; and by him al created: and he is the Head of the Body, the Church and the Issue of al is, For it pleased the Father, that in him all fulness should dwel. i.e. al the fullness of al Grace is in Christ, in that he is Head, and so head, as that he is also the invisible image of the Father. In a word,

Look what the Human Nature did receive from the Son, as a Son, and begotten of the Father, that it re­ceives by gift also and firstly from the Father, because what the Son doth, as Son, he doth it from the Fa­ther.

But the Human Nature received it, as the highest gift, that ever was given, to be taken into personal union by the Son, as the second person begotten of the Fa­ther.

What the Son, as the Son, begotten of the Father gives to the human Nature, that the Father gives firstly.

But this personal union, the Son, as from the Father, gives: Therefore the Father gives it firstly. Upon this ground is that Inference also or the Apostle. Col. 2.9, 10. The Apostle would have them walk in Christ, in the power of his Grace, and in the direction of his rule and government and he joyns these two together, as the rea­son, For in him dwels the fullness of the God-Head Bodily, Nor by way of type, but truly, nor yet by communication of vertue, which he doth to and in the Saints, nor yet by sacramental relation, as he doth accompany his ordinances, but the very essence of the God-Head in the second person supports the Human Nature, as one person with it. This is the Union. verse, 10. Ye are complete in him, who is the Head &c. Compleat in al-Grace, to inable in al the fulness of wise­dom, a [...] Prophet, and rule, as a King, to guid you in the waies of his Grace. He is the Head from, the for­mer of al life and motion. If the fullness of the God-Head personally, then the fulness of al Grace dwels in him.

2. Its given by way of Covenant.

Psal. 45.7.

  • Loving al righteousness as to fulfil it.
  • Hating al iniquity, as to suffer for it, and to remove it.

Act. 2.34. Being exaked at the right hand of the Fa­ther, and having received the promise of the spirit, he hath shed it abroad. It behoved Christ to suffer al these things, and so to enter into his glory. The Human Na­ture of our Savior having now attained al that fulness of glorious Grace, hat is compatible to any creature. Hence,

1. Our Savior hath received Al most glorious Grace in a most Eminent Manner.

Grace is first in his Human Nature: For since the fal, and that Adam, through his just desert, hath deprived him of the Grace, that God had given him in Innocency: Had not our Savior taken our Nature into union with himself; that in it he might suffer and satisfie and pur­chase Gods Favor and spirit to bring us again: It had not been possible, that ever any grace should have been imparted to us.

He is the Head of his Church. Eph. 1: 22. The Root or Stock unto the Scions and Branches. Joh. 15.1.

The fountain of living Water, al means, and men, and ordinances, are but conduits, which give no more than they do receive: As the Moon from the Sun: as the looking Glass reflects the light, hath no light. 2. Cor. 4.6. To give the light of the glory of God in the face of Christ.

2. He hath it OUT OF MEASURE, not only because he hath the spirit of Grace dwelling in him, with the God-Head: and all the fulness of the God-Head: But also, He hath al Graces, in al the Kinds of them, and all the degrees.

As there is no weakness attending any Grace, which ought to be removed: there is not any Scantness that any more can be added; nothing but wisedom, no folly, or ignorance to blemish it, and there is so much, that Human Nature is capable of no more, no further increase can be expected.

In the Body of Christ, and amongst al Christians, each man hath his measure and proportion suitable to his place, and answerable to the condition he doth pos­sess in the Body.

As in the Body natural: The finger is not so big as the hand, nor that, as the Arm', nor that as the Back or Thighs: but each holds his place and proportion, and so his perfection in his kind. So in the Body mystical: [Page 85]one excels in patience and Meekness, though truly Zea­lous: another excels in Zeal and courage, though meek and humble in his measure also. Some are hands, and some are fingers and feet in this mystical Body, and all the while, the proportion of their Graces answer their places; Its comly.

But its otherwise with our Savior. He is Zealous, and meek, and patient and nothing can be added to the measure, fulness, and perfection of these. Eph. 4.13. Ʋnto the measure of the stature &c.

3. Without ALTERATION, or possibility of loosing, weakening or decaying in the power of any Grace. This was incident, as we find by woful experi­ence, to the state and perfection of Adam in innocency. He came compleatly furnished with all abilities, which might answer his condition, and the obtaining of his end. His understanding and knowledg clear; and yet became first to be darkned, then deluded, and then lost and taken away from him. His will holy, and fitted to choose and to injoy the chiefest good, but immediately unsetled and perverted: and corruption defaceth the whol man.

But it is beyond al possibility, that the least decaying in any of these glorious Graces, should betide him: because our Human Nature is not vertually only, as to Adam, but the Essence by the person comes to be knit in personal Union with it, and so sustaines it in that un­changeable condition. For if our savior should be changed, the infinite power of the Spirit of the God-Head might be over-come, and put to the worse, which is impossible. It was an argument to them, for their safety, that they should overcome the world: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. Therefore much more in our Savior essentially, when in us vertually. The Prince of this world comes, saies our Savior, and finds nothing in me; Finds no sin that he can provoke, & so taketh an advantage, nor finds he weakness or muta­bility of any Grace, that he is beyond all Hope to shake.

4. It is in him by POWERFƲL and Effica­cious communication. i. e. He hath so Grace in him­self, that he can convey Grace to others, and work it also in them. So it is not with any man. He may exercise and put forth the act of Grace upon another, but to con­vey of his own Grace to another, to make him wise by anothers wisedom, this cannot be. Joh. 1.16. Of his fulness we all receive. Likewise Eph. 1.23. The Church is said, to be the fulness of him, that filleth all in all. Paul studies this, That Christ may be formed in them. Gal. 4.19.

USE, 1. Of Examination.

We may hence discover, whether our Graces be counterfeit or of the right kind, such as a man may be content to appear before Chirst withal, such as will go in Heaven with us.

All Graces are firstly in him, as the treasurer of all Graces: therefore ours must be from him, if they fa­vor any thing of Christ, or we expect any acceptation for them. So Paul. 2 Cor. 13.3. Since ye seek a proof of Christ speaking: So we should seek a proof of Christ humbling, of Christ making us patient, and meek, and Zealous. For there be counterfeits of al these, which carry a great shew and appearence to those that have no skil in mettalls, and carry not the Touch-stone of dis­cerning about them. Ask therefore this, whence come thy Graces; If they be of the right make, they came from the right mint or quarry.

So Paul issues it. Cor. 13.5. Prove and examine your selves whether ye be in the Faith or no. And how is that done? know ye not that Christ is in you, unless ye be reprobates: al is drossy otherwise. Splendida peccata. Prove that, and the other wil be apparent. As we say of China Mettal. If it be right, its only there found, and must from thence be fetched. There is [Page 87]counterfeit and false, that is meerly imitated. So it is, If saving Christian Grace, they must be from a Savior and a Christ. Thus Paul intimates and points out ap­parently, by way of distinction. Phil. 1.2.

Saints in Christ Jesus. Nay of himself professeth, that he lived not.

USE 2. Of Comfort to al the Saints.

If they be empty, here is fullness of Grace to satisfy: If scant, here is grace out of measure to content and supply them: If poor, here is treasury of wisdom and knowledg, and though they may decay, this wil re­cover and strengthen and establish to perfection.

USE 3.

For, DIRECTION How to get this glorious grace. Go to him who hath it. As Peter in a like kind. Whither should I go, but unto Christ, the Author of Grace, the giver of all grace and peace? He is the great Almner, by whom God gives al: As in an­other case, its said, The Father judgeth no man, but hath committed al judgment to his Son; so he comforts, quickens none, but by his Son: therefore in these, of al ordinances, priviledge [...], performances, look at them only, either as those which lead to Christ, or come from Christ.

What Christ hath received as man, we have dispatched.

2. What he gives now comes into consi­deration where there be two Doctrins.

  • 1. The Saints share in a like glorious grace with Christ.
  • 2. This glorious grace they receive by way of gift from our Savior.

To the First. 2. Cor. 3.18. The Apostles Testi­mony is pregnant, even to the letter of the doctrine. We all with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, &c. i. e. while by Faith, in the evidence of the gospel, we behold the glorious grace of God imprinted upon the humane nature of our Savior, we come to re­ceive the like print and impression of glorious grace upon our own Souls. 2. Tim. 2.1. My Son be strong in the Grace that is in Christ.

As it is with the beams of the Sun that be in the aire, they have heat and light continued to them, while they are continued to the body of the sun: If once that be in­tercepted, the other decayes and vanisheth away; So it is with the grace that i [...] in us, which hath its beauty and glorious strength from the daily influence and continu­ance we have and hold in our communion and sweet in­tercourse with the Lord Jesus, as the fountain of al grace and glory.

See this truth made good in four particulars.

1. This grace is Inward and spiritual, not that which orders a mans carriage in regard of himself, nor moralizes his behavior to walk civilly and inoffensively towards others: but it leaves an impression upon the most inward motions of the soul, as they meet with God in the most retired and refined actions thereof. Psal. 15. The Queen is al glorious within. Truth in the inward parts in those contrivements which God alone is privy to. Sound ones in Gods statutes.

2. This impression of glorious Grace in ƲNI­VERSAL. Every faithful hath (not some few, or many, but) all the saving and sanctifi [...]ng Graces of the Spirit, in al the kinds of them, and is able and doth also put forth the operations thereof, as occasions do invite, and the Law and his own duty doth require at his hands. Joh. 1.16. Of his fulness we al receive, & grace for grace. i.e. for each grace in Christ there is the like, and answer­able [Page 89]Grace left in the heart of every beleever. As it is with the seal and the Wax. There is in the Wax, letter for letter, syllable for syllable, word for word, answer­able to that which was in the Seal. Every letter there in­stamped; is for the kind and number imprinted upon the Wax: So it is with the grace of our Savior, that is like the seal: our hearts like the wax. We receive patience from his patience, humility in him leaves a like impression of hu­mility in us &c. Holiness from his holiness, courage, from his courage. Hence is that of the Apostle, Galat. 4. 19. My little Children of whom I travail again, until Christ be formed in you. As it is with the parts of the Body of a Child naturally, in an ordinary and common way of Providence; There is not one, or few, or many members of a man, but al the particulars are fashioned, when the Child is conceived: otherwise, it is not a human creature, but a monstrous birth. If the hand should want some fingers, or the Arm a hand, or the Body an Arm: But Nature in the course of generation intends al the parts and al the proportions of them: un­less her work be hindered and blemished. So it is in our spiritual Regeneration, when a Christan is born by the immortal Seed of the word, in the Womb of the Church, Whol Christ, i.e. All the saving and gracious dispo­sitions of soul, whereby a man comes to be a perfect Christian, and to carry the stamp of Christ, his ever­lasting Father, are left upon him: otherwise he is not a new Creature, but indeed a fal [...] birth and Monster in Christianity. And hence the Apostle wisheth, they should comprehend &c. And be filled with al bis Fulness. Eph. 3.19. i.e. They should not be an empty crevis or corner; no part of the Body, but it should be sancti­fied to become a weapon of righteousness: no faculty of the soul, but it should be adorned with some glorious impression of the power of Grace, wisedom and prudence in the mind, holiness in the wil, harmonious readi­ness in al the affections, to attend the counsel of the [Page 90]Lord, to be instruments of holiness.

3. As they share in al the kinds of glorious Grace here, while they are in their infancy, and in the Bosom of the Church: So also, They do partake of all the PERFECTIONS of al these kinds: When they shal arrive at the end of their hopes, the Salvation of their souls. Here the earnest, there the ful bargain: Here the first fruits, there the whol harvest of holines and hap­piness. 1. Joh. 3.2. We are now the sons of God, but it doth not appear, what we shal be, but this is known, that when Christ doth appear, we shal be like him, for we shal see him as he is. Then we shall not see him darkly, as he is revealed in his word, dispensing himself in his Ordinances, But we shall see him, as he it. He shall dart in those unconceiveable beames of the ful­ness of all holiness from himself immediately upon the Soul. Then the Soul shall see nothing but a Christ, and receive nothing but the impressions of the holiness & hap­piness of a Christ. This is called, the Perfect Man: that a perfect Christian, when this glory is made Perfect: when there shall be no weakness to enfeeble the strength of Grace, no blemishes to darken the surpassing beauty of holiness. This is the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ. Eph. 4.13.

4. They share in the CONSTANCY and im­mutability of al this glorious Grace. When they shall be beyond all fears and changes, above principalities and powers, beyond the noise of temptations which may assauk and hinder the work of Grace: without and be­yond the sight and presence of sin, which may any waies enfeeble it. Called An excessive, exceeding, eternal weight of glory. 2 Cor. 4.17. This is called the Crown of righteousness. 2 Tim. 4.8. The Crown of life and glory. Jam. 1.12. This is the Diamond in the Crown, and glory of our glory: when Grace is now setled in the Throne, and Crowned with immutability and Eternity, (i.e. becomes victorious and enemies [Page 91]vanquished) as admitting no alteration, nay no opposition of any thing to hinder, nay not the sight of any enemy more, that may disturb our setled and established state of happiness.

They who share in the Truth of all kinds of Graces, in the Perfections of al kinds, in the Immutability of al those perfections: They partake of the like glorious Grace with our Savior. This last indeed is the end and perfection of Grace; It was given to Adam, and he should have used it, that he might have been immutable in the use of it: But missing it, he lost his Grace and fel short of glory. Now that which the first Adam should have done and failed, the second Adam hath done, and so hath obtained it.

2. They receive this by Gift.

He it is in whom al Grace, as a fountain is setled. To whom the immediate dispensation and communication of it, is committed by God, and from his free gift, they must receive it.

For look we at the Saints, as they ly in the Loynes of Adam.

1. They have forfeited this glory, put away this Grace from them, and by reason of their rebellion have justly deserved, the Lord should depart away, [...] withdraw the presence of his Grace, which he formerly furnished them withal. Rom. 3.23. We have sinn [...] and are deprived of his Glory. Yea they take shame and confusion as their due and portion, Dan. 9.7. O Lord, to us belongeth shame and confusion of face, as it appeareth this day. Yea they ly down in shame. Jer. 3.25.

2. They have nothing of worth, that may purchase it; they can do nothing that can deserve it. For when they have done all they can, they are not only unprofit­able servants. Luk. 17.10. Psal. 143.2. But that is not al: should the Lord reckon with them for [Page 92]what is done, who could abide? they are so far from having hope to receive glory from God, as that they might justly expect a Curse at his hand, and he could not, but in Justice send it.

3. And lastly, such is the baseness of the hearts of men, and the crosseness of their corrupt Natures to his glorious Grace, that as they wil hot, so in truth they cannot receive it. No man can receive any thing, un­less it be given from above. Joh. 3.27. Joh. 14.17 The world cannot receive the spirit, because they have not seen him, nor known him.

Object. But our Savior hath entered into covenant with God the Father to become the Shepheard of his Sheep, to undertake the charge and care of his Elect, to bring them to Grace and so to glory. Joh. 17.2. To as many as are given to Christ, he should give eternal life to them. Joh. 6.37. All that the Father giveth to me shall come, and I wil lose none. If therefore a debt and agreement unto which our Savior is bound, how is it then a gift, which is in his liberty to deny▪

Answ. True, Its that which Justice and righteous­ness cal for, that haveing tyed hmself by promise, & inga­ged his faithfulness and truth, To seek and to save, to [...]ing other of his sheep, and to bless &c. He cannot fail, [...]g his faithfulness, and deny himself; and not [...] [...]nd the honor of his own word.

But let it be demanded, why the Lord did Engage himself to undertake the work of our Salvation:

It wil appear, that there is nothing but free Grace breathing in al the work: he freely undertook it, out of his free good wil performed it, and out of his free Grace applies it. So that there is nothing but free Grace and the free gift of Grace, in what Christ hath wrought for us, or wrought in us.

You have both the particulars opened, we will give you the Reasons of both together.


1. Taken from the proportion between the first, and second Adam, the Type and the Truth. As the first A­dam conveyed his sin and wrath by a covenant of works: the second must convey holiness and life by a covenant of Grace, and the free gift thereof. The first Adam begat a Son in his own image, wholly defiled and defaced with original corruption, and so made him Heir apparent to the curse and condemnation thereby. The second Adam must instamp the image of holiness upon his, without which, none shal see life. Hebr. 12.14. Thus the Apostle disputes, 1 Cor. 15.49. As we have born the image of the Earthy, the first, so we shal bear the image of the Heavenly.

2. For this end, the human Nature of our Savior hath received, and is become the first subject of al Grace, that from thence it might be derived unto the Nature of his Children. For this end, in our Nature he hath perfor­med what ever divine Justice hath required, purchased, and provided a way and means for the communication of al Grace to his: Therefore undoubtedly he wil give it, and they receive it: Otherwise, he should miss his end, and they their good.

1. For this end he hath received al Grace. For had not the second person, by the power of the Deity, brought our Nature to God, and assumed it into person­al union with himself, so that the fulness of the God-Head might dwel Bodily in it, and so the fulness of al Grace communicated thereunto: It had not been pos­sible that ever the Sons of Adam, who are become ene­mies to God and the work of his Grace, should have been made partakers thereof, being wholly cross there­unto. Col. 2.10. Ye are complete in Christ, because in him dwelleth all the fulness of the God-Head Bodily. Ye need no other King to rule, nor Prophet to teach, nor Priest to sanctifie.

Yea for this end in our Nature he hath purchased al, provided a way to convey al Grace.

For had he not died, and by death satisfied the Law' the strength of sin had never been subdued, nor could our corruptions be mortified.

Had he not by his resurrection triumphed over the power of Grave and Satan, and al sinful weaknesses, we had never had our hearts raised and quickned to Newness of life.

But when he died, we by his death, dy to sin: and sin died when he rose: we by his resurrection must rise to Newness of life. For this end, these were performed, and this must also be attained. Rom. 6.8. Therefore it is, that this gift of Grace is committed to him, and the dis­pensation, and immediate communication belongs to him. Therefore the Spirit is said to take of Christs. Joh. 16.14. He shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you. There is no killing vertue, quickening ver­tue, could be applied or received, but only through his death, first in him, thereby, then in us.

3. He that gives the faithful, the Spirit of Grace and glory, must needs also give them all glorious Grace.

But our Savior doth so. This is the reason the Apo­stle alledgeth, 2 Cor. 3.18. As by the spirit of the Lord. Rom. 8.2. The Law of the Spirit of life hath freed us from the Law of sin. As it is in the Scion knit unto the stock, It is partaker of the same sap with the stock: So here. They are said to be implanted into the similitude, i.e. To grow up together in the similitude of his death. Rom. 6.5. As his spirit by his death killed sin, that was charged upon him: So we by that Spirit, grow up in the vertue of that death, and die to sin.


1. This gives in heavy evidence against a world of [Page 95]wicked wretches, and casts out a crowd of ungodly per­sons, our of the pale and fold of Christ, as such, as never yet had the work of faith here, nor have any hope of glory hereafter.

If all beleevers share in the Grace of Christ: what shal we think of such ignorant poor creatures. that never knew this? of those profane ones, who profess them­selves to be Scorners and Opposers of grace, and the gos­pel of grace and the spirit of grace and Christ himself? what shal we think of them? think of them, as they are: They are unbeleeving creatures, yet in the gal of bitter­ness, and bond of iniquity, and must, and wil have their portion with unbeleevers, in the lake that burneth with fire and brimstone. They loath the glorious grace of God now: they shal be shut out, and banished from his glorious presence for ever.

But I wil not trouble you, nor my self with these, whose conditions are so loathsome even unto their own consciences. Only I shal settle it as a matter of sad re­proof upon two sorts, whose hopes and professions seem to promise better, but in the issue couzen themselves, and fal short of their own comforts.

1. It crusheth the confidence, and splits the vain pretences of al the most refined Hypocrites upon Earth.

Its not the gilt & enameling of any ordinary duty, nor the paint of any profession, that wil evidence either their Title to Christ, or the Grace of Christ, which he gives in­deed to his. No it is the spiritualness of the work in their Souls. If the outside be never so clean, If there be rot­tenness within, he loaths it. Psal. 45.13. The Kings Daughter is all glorious within &c. The garments of the spouse, are not gilt; but wrought Gold. Its not the shew and appearance in your lives, if ye deny the power of Godliness in your hearts. 2 Tim. 3.5. That is not Circumcision that is outward in the flesh: that is not the glorious Grace of Christ, that reformes a mans course before men. But that is Circumcision, which [Page 96]is of the spirit, that is the Grace of Christ, that makes a man close with God in Christ. Thou mayst have strong inlightenings in thy mind, strange raptures in thy spirit, and rell [...]shes of joy, tast of the good word, and the heavenly gift, and the power of the world to come, have a Peep-hole into Heaven, and see a glimpse of glory passing by, and all this be nothing, but the Grace of Apostates and Hypocrites, not the Grace of Christ. No saies the Apostle. We hope better things of you. Deeper impressions of the power of the Lord Christ, and the work of the spirit, must soak through thy soul, and that not only tasted but digested, and thy heart delivered up into the authority thereof.

2. Those who please themselves with the apprehen­sion that they have some Grace, but are content to want some other, and so indeed, want al.

When either education hath reformed them, or their conscience awed them, or their occasions or conditi­ons free them from such assaults, and because they want the temptation to sin, they suppose they have the grace of Christ. One man blesseth himself, he is not worldly, and sensual, yet contents himself to be proud: another is not passionate and loose, yet worldly; whereas if Christ be formed in a man, nothing of the saving work of Christ wil be wanting: if a new creature, al things are new: otherwise, he is a Monster in Christianity, not in truth a Christian of Christs make. Either al or none at al.

If ye have heard and learnt as the truth is in Jesus, put off the old man; not an old Hand, or Eye, but the frame of heart and life put on the [...]w man.

USE, 2. Of Instruction.

Sanctification is a never-failing argument of a belee­ving and happy condition. If God give glorious Grace here, he will give possession of glory hereafter. Its [Page 97]Christs work, he will approve of it, Its the image of himself, he will own it. Its the tenure of the pro­mise, Jer. 31.33. Its the sentence which is now pas­sed upon such. Judged they may be, condemned they shall never be. Math. 5.8. Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God. Eph. 4.20, 21, 22.

USE 3 Its Matter of Thankfulness.

If Christ think nothing too good for us, we should be ashamed to stand for a little cost and labour for him. He parts with the choicest of his favour, his Glory to us: we should part with the best of our Duties to him: the best of our hearts, to love him, of our love to honor him, of our indeavours to serve him. They are not common courtesies which he vouchlafes to us, not creatures to comfort us, profits to enrich, but the most precious fa­vor that the Father bestowed: He hath no greater, nor better, and that glory he gives to them. Let us be a­shamed to give the Lean, the Lame, the leavings to the Lord. Give him the glory of al that glory we do receive. As the Elders, Rev. 4.10. Cast down our Crowns before him. And let him be advanced in al that he advanceth us.

USE, 4. Of Exhortation.

Whither we must go, if we Hope to speed, and to receive this gift, to what dore to go, to receive this dole, come to Christ the giver, if we Hope to receive this gift. The Spirit takes of Christ, before he gives it to us: therefore much more we must go to him, before we can receive it. The way lies in these four things.

1. See all in him, And Joyn none with him, as the Author and worker of this. There be instruments to convey Grace, but there is no Author of this, or giver of this, but Christ. Of his fulness we receive. All [Page 98]other things are empty without him, and can work no­thing further than he will work by them. Christ is al in al. Col. 3.11. Not ordinances, not Duties, not Sa­craments: Paul is nothing, Apollo is nothing, but Christ is all, Christ by all, Christ through all these works.

2. Look at that in Christ, which we need and would have, and keep the heart under the stroke of the Spirit in Christ, that working Grace in the Nature of our Savior, from thence he may work Grace in us. If we would have patience, Eye the patience of Christ, and the Spirit working patience in him, and from his patience, patience in me. As it is in a Glass that hath many colors, Red, Green, Blew, Yellow; If the Sun shine upon it, it wil convey the like colors upon that which is opposite to it. The Human Nature of our Savior is as the Glafs, all the Graces in their variety are like so many colors: The Spirit shining upon the Nature of our Savior by it leaves the like impression of Graces upon our Souls, while by faith we keep our Hearts under the stroke there­of.

3. Faith acts each faculty to disgest and improve that power from Christ received, for his particular use, ac­cording to its particular end. As the Veines deliver up the Blood to each part, as that special portion and pro­vision, which is allowed in the course of Nature, for its relief, and so each part taking the Blood, it doth appro­priate it to its own Nature. Bone makes Bone of it, Sinews make Sinews, &c. So Faith, like those Veins, conveys the efficacy of the Blood and merits of Christ to all the faculties, to answer al their necessities.

4. We must wait Gods leasure, and stay his time for the bestowing of his favors. Beggers must not be Chu­sers; And nothing more free than gift: And therefore he that will challenge it, at his time, and according to his wil, makes it a Debt, and not a Gift.

That they may be one, as we are one.

Here is the third thing, that was especially intended in the verse.

  • 1. We heard that Christ had all glorious Grace given him.
  • 2. That he gives all that glorious Grace unto his Saints.

Here lastly we have the END AND AIME of our Savior, in this his bounty in giving, and the bene­fit of the faithful in receiving. Viz. That they may be one in the Father and the Son. Hence,

The end why the Saints receive all glorious Grace from our Savior Christ, is this,Doct. that they may be one, as the Father and Son are one with themselves.

This is a truth not included, or that which may by way of consequence be collected, or probably inferred out of the text: But that which is clearely intended, as the chief scope of our Savior, yea fully and plainly ex­pressed in the words, beyond all exception or disputati­on, and that which carries such evidence out of the phrase of speech, that unless a man wil cast away the rule and dictate of right reason, he can in no wise reject or refuse.

Ask but the Question, why did our Savior Christ receive all glorious Grace into his Human Nature from God the Father?

The Answer is, He received it by way of gift, that he might give it to others out of his faithfulness. He was their Treasurer.

But ascend one stair higher, if yet further we may stirr. What was the end of our Saviors giving of this Grace?

The Answer is ful and fair from the letter of the text, for this is another reason, that can be fastened upon the manner of the speech, It was for this end; its that which our Savior aimed at in a peculiar manner, That they may be one, as the Father and Son are.

This is the Crown of that glory, which the Saints shal attain in the ful perfection thereof in Heaven, yea the dia­mond of that Crown, the Pinnacle and highest point of perfection, there to be expected in regard of their own particulars; as that which each man hath in his Eye. The Heaven of Heaven, and one step higher than the highest Star of glorious Grace.

For we know the end is better than the meanes, and adds beauty to the meanes, Els there would be a flaw and blemish in glory, and some defect. Eph. 4.13. When all the Churches are perfected and the Saints ga­thered and come to the fulness of the Stature of Christ, and have attained the unity of the faith. The highest strain of their happiness is, to acknowledg the Son of God. q. d. There is nothing to do in Heaven, but only that. That's the top of glory, and one step higher than al the happiness of al that glorious Grace, they shal injoy there to perfection: To give in witness through al Eternity, that al the good they have received, it was in Christ as the fountain: all that was done by al means, it was done by him. So the Apostle gives in the Reason of Gods dispensation, It pleased the Father that in him, all fulness should dwel; That in all things he might have the Preheminence.

Tha Sacraments were ful of comfort and the word and Sermons ful of wisedom, consciences ful of peace that passeth understanding: but it was because the ful­ness of Christ overflowed in these & filled these, otherwise had he withdrawn himself, the word had been a clasped Book and a killing letter, and [...] heart an empty Vessel.

So the Soul in glory, acknowledg no means, nor or­ders, [Page 101]nor offices further than he appoints them, nor was there any power in them or vertue communicated there­by, further than the Lord was pleased to work by them. The power was Christ that strengthened; The life and vertue Christ that quickened. The success was Christs only, who was pleated to breath upon and bless.

I take it to be the meaning of that place very difficult, and the expression very spiritual and of a high strain. 2 Thess. 1.12. That the Name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the Grace of God, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Why, you would say, Is there any Name higher than the Name of Christ, or glory due to any beyond or after Christ? why is it added, that Christ should be glorified and you in him?

For Answer, open the words a little, as we pass for the present, we shall speak more fully and largely, when we shall come to them again, that which may suffice for the while is this. The Apostle having prayed in the fore­going verse, That God would count them worthy of their calling, i. e. Worthy of the glory, Ʋnto which they were called and so fulfil al the good pleasure of his good­ness i.e. fully bestow al that spiritual good, which in the ful purpose of his good pleasure he intended to them, and that he would bring the work of Faith to perfection by his mighty power.

Now the end of al that glory and fulness of al that spiritual good he prayes for, for them, and they should partake of, according to his prayer. The end of all is, that the Name of Christ (Christ as he is made known in his word and Offices and the execution of the great work of Redemption) may be made glorious in you; He from the Father giving al to you. You also may be glorified, not in your selves, but in your reference and Oneness to­wards Christ, in receiving and returning al to the Fa­ther by him. And therefore those words are added, according to the Grace of God, and our Lord Jesus [Page 102]Christ: you so in him, as through him in God. God through Grace in Christ gives himself and Christ to you: you also through Grace give up your selves to Christ, and through him to God.

For the opening, do three things.

  • 1. Recal what this oneness is.
  • 2. How this oneness and glorious Grace differ each from other, or may be rightly discerned in their several considerations.
  • 3. The Reasons of the point, upon what grounds it may rightly be gathered and concluded: to be one with the Father and the Son is the END, and so of greater excellency, than al the glorious Grace the Saints do partake of.

1. This unity, or oneness, is not the unity of affection, which the faithful, as members of the same body ought to maintain in their hearts, and consciences, and convers; As being of one heart and mind; Keeping the unity of the faith in the bond of peace.

For, First. The express words of vers. 21. hold forth the contrary, and the latter looks another way. That they may be one in us. As though our Savior had pur­posely added the interpretation of his prayer and words. q. d. If you ask me, of what unity I speak, when I pray that beleevers should be one: my intendment may most easily and fully be understood of this resemblance, As I am in the Father, and the Father in me, the scope of my prayer is, they should be one in us. The unity in themselves wil surely follow, but thats not it I now so fully look at.

Again the words of the verse wil not admit this sense. The glorious grace given to the Saints by Christ, is made here distinct from this Oneness; as the means is different from the end, and less excellent than the end.

But unity of Affection is part of that glorious Grace, [Page 103]which our Savior hath given the faithful.

So that it is the unity of relation. As the Father wholly and alone gives his being and Sonship to Christ: The Son, as he receives, so he returnes his being to the Father, as things in relation look each to the other, re­ceive and give consistence one to the other, and so may be said to be in each other, and to be one in this mutual respect. Joh. 14.10. Beleevest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? So here. As the Father is to Christ, looks only as a Father to a Son, and gives subsistence to him: The Son again looks, only to a Father, and returnes his being & subsistence of a Son to him:

So Christ to the faithful. He gives Spiritual being in Adoption to them, as his Sons only: They as Sons return al that spiritual being to him again. So our Sa­vior; As I am one in them, and thou in me, and by spiritual influence communicate the being of Sons to them. So they are one in me, and to in thee, by re­ceiving and returning al alone unto us. So that our Sa­vior doth not only bring the Soul of the faithful into the nee [...]est relation of dearest love as Adopted Sons; But also into that spiritual intercourse of the peculiar and divine operation of God upon the Soul whereby the Soul returnes unto God, to do al, and receive al. To do all for himself in man: To receive al to himself by man.

The Lord Jesus having fitted the Soul for himself, and united the Soul to himself, and made the Soul acceptable to the Father in his Blood. He sends the spirit of A­doption into the hearts of his, sets their hearts for God. Holds the [...]ent of their hearts towards him.

This is the gracious look of a Father towards them. The faithful receiving this spiritual being of Sonship, Fasten to Christ as the fountain of life: leave their hearts with him and abide in him, to be wholly acted [Page 104]by the influence and assistance of his Spirit, and to hold up the excellency thereof. Thus they return al to God in Christ.

2. How this glorious Grace, which the Lord im­prints upon the Soul, is distinguished from this One­ness.

Answ. The words in the Text evidence the distin­ction: i. e. They differ, as the means appointed to an end are distinct from the end.

This unity of relation carries the glorious operations or motions of the presence of the Spirit upon the belee­vers Heart.

I cal them Stirrings of his presence, as implying that which is somwhat more general, than the gracious dis­positions, spiritual and supernatural habits of Grace. For though those also Issue from the operation of the spirit, yet they are somwhat more.

As the Spirit assisting, fastening, holding the heart, and making it to abide under the stroke of the spirit, pacifying, quickening; Are not so much habits of Grace poured into the Soul, but rather Dints and stirrings of the Spirit assisting or inhabiting.

As he that sets or Joints the part that is out, and chaf­eth it out of its numness, leaves a remembrance of the power and motion of his Hand: But he that puts in Oyl, leaves a quality or Oyly moisture which remaines in the part.

So here, The spirit draws, and unites the soul in vocation: leaves the poyse of the assistance of the spirit upon it in Adoption; whereby it makes the soul abide in Christ and under the stroke of his spirit, as he abides in it.

And hence follows the impression of the image of God, the gracious habits of wisedom, holiness, righte­ousness in the wil, and so a liberty to spiritual good, whereby the beleever is inabled, not only to put forth acts of obedience and observance, which concern the [Page 105]works of the Law, but even to set a going, and that a fresh, those several operations of the Spirit, unto which he had been formerly quickened by the vertue of the Gos­pel, and carried unto by this covenant of Grace, as to fasten to Christ, to abide in him, and resign it self to be acted by him, and the power of his spirit and Grace. And this is indeed a thing of highest excellency, and therefore to this end and purpose the Choicest of all Graces ought in an eipecial manner to be improved.

And this appeares by these Reasons following.

1. That therein the glory of God, and his divine and unconceiveable excellencies are most magnified and Ad­vanced, for that end, even the glorious Graces in their highest pitch ought to be improved.

But in this union of relation towards God, al the di­vine excellencies will most gloriously appear, and in truth much more than in al the gracious habits the Soul is capable of.

Thus the Apostle intimates (to my apprehension) with some evidence, as though he of purpose intended it, and would have al to understand it so. 2 Thess. 1.10. When the Lord shal come at the day of Judgment to render vengeance to those that obey not the Gospel, then saies the Apostle, The Lord shal be glorified in his Saints but admired in those that beleeve. True it is, that those who are Saints do beleeve, but the Apostle seems ap­parently to shew the odds, and this glorious excellency of the true Graces.

They who are sanctified and express the power of Gods Grace in their hearts and lives: God wil be glori­fied in them, that they do express his vertues, and so set forth the glory of his Name.

But when he comes to consider of the bringing of a man to beleeve, here the work of God and the excellen­cy of his dealing, is that which dazels the very Eyes of [Page 106]Angels, and amazeth the hearts of Devils. There his works are beyond all admiration.

Admiration implies a thing not expected, or some thing more than we looked for, or lies open in a com­mon course, we wonder at such a thing when it fals. And secondly we cannot tel what to make of it, or how to conceive or comprehend the Reason, its matter of admi­ration not of comprehension.

When the Devil and wicked men knew such men in their unbeleeving courses, under the curse of the Law and the power of their corruptions, contemners of Christ and mercy. The Devils have seen men holy and to walk unblameably; so in paradise; and therein God is glo­rified, and his vertues expressed: But when they shall see such poor wretched creatures at Gods right hand. He was sunk deep under the curse of the Law, now par­doned: under the Tyranny of Satan, and so in his Claws, he took him alive, now restored. In the bottom of Hel, now delivered. In death, and darkness now again re­stored to life, and he that was so opposite to Christ, now brought so neer to him and the Father, and in them injoy the blessed and holy communion, which is beyond the happiness of Heaven.

The Angels wil be swallowed with admiration, and the Devils confounded and astonished, at the wonder­ment of the unconceivable compassion of the Lord, and the blessedness of this condition. 1 Cor. 15. The first Adam was a living Soul, could by natural generation beget one like himself: But the second Adam is a quic­kening spirit: That when dead, he can quicken them: when lost, and opposite to him and Grace, he can and doth receive them to himself.

2. That which brings us neerer unto God, and makes us to receive more from him, that is most excellent, and other things must be subordinate thereunto.

But this unity of relation doth so.

For to have glorious Graces, and to put forth obedi­ence [Page 107]there from is no more, but that a creature may do, from a principle in it self: had Adam stood, his poste­rity might have challenged happiness by vertue of a covenant of works done by a man, and from a man con­veyed by natural generation.

But in the covenant of the Gospel, the God-Head of Christ in the Nature of man, brings man again unto God, and keeps it with him.

The God-Head in our Nature wrought al for us, communicates al to us. The mutable principle of Grace never brought a man to God, or kept him with him, nor since the fal can do it.

But it was not a principle in us firstly, but the holy spirit of God, by the infinite power of the God-Head, carries the bent of our hearts to him, acts it upon him, keeps it with him, and so inables us to hold up the power and praises of Christ from the Father. So that a poor creature is compassed about with nothing but the power of God in Christ, being one with the Father and the son in his relation to them, and dependance upon them.

USE, 1. Of Reprehension.

This shews the greatness of the sin of unbeleef, and the misery of unbeleevers, who not only oppose the righteousness of the Law of God, which should rule them, his statutes and precepts which should direct them: But the Blood of the covenant, shed by Christ, they trample upon it; the reconciliation wrought and tendered, they despise it, the Bowels, compassions which would imbrace them, they scorn and cast behind their Back.

If the union to the Father and the Son be beyond Heaven and happiness it self. Then the opposition to these by unbeliefe is more bitter than death, and worse than Hell. And Therefore it seemes God comes against [Page 108]such in the fierceness of his fury, as the marks and Ob­jects of his heaviest i [...]dignation. 2 Thess. 1.8, 9. He will come in flaming fire to render vengeance to such that obey not the Gospel. Against these he proceeds in the first place with greatest fury, and punisheth them with everlasting destruction from his face, not have one favor­able cast of his countenance or smile, when before he hath woed them, and wept over them, and intreated in the Gospel to be reconciled. Yea from the glory of his power.

Object. But is not that an ease, that his power should not plague.

Answ. That is not the meaning, for this is their plague, that they are secluded from the presence of his glorious power.

The glorious power of all Gods Attributes were put forth in the Gospel, and they shal be beyond the Hope and thought of it. The glorious power of Gods wise­dom will never contrive any thing for their good, nor his mercy accomplish it, or goodness communicate it.

2. Its matter and ground of marvailous comfort and Content to the faithful, to solace them in the interest they have in Christ, and this their Relation to Christ, as their Redeemer, Head, and Husband, with whom they are made one Spirit, which is more than to be in Heaven, better than happiness it self. Thus Asaph Ps. 73. Answers all doubts, supplies al his wants, cures all his feares. Whom have I in Heaven but thee? and there is none in Earth that I desire in comparison of thee. The Covetous have the world, the Epicures their pleasures, but I, have thee, in comparison of whom, these are not worth the having, nay not worth the name­ing.

Yea in Heaven, when I am come to the end of my [Page 109]Hopes, what would I, what can I have there? I can have no more but this, but that the Lord wil be all in all to us in glory. As long as he is and wil be all in all to us in mercy, what need we fear, why should we care? But these thoughts be precious, and Meditations sweet, and let us go to them, and be in them, with the like affecti­on, as we shall be in Heaven.

Verse, 23.

I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made per­fect in one: and that the world may know, that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast love me.

THe foregoing verse discovered the means, which our Savior appointed and im­proved also for the accomplishment of that Ʋnion, which he so earnestly begged for his disciples, and hath pur­sued by so many expressions.

In this verse we have the Order set down, according to which it is wrought, by the wise counsel of the Lord: And this our Savior fetcheth very far; I in them, and thou in me, that they &c.

Two things we are to attend in this v [...]rse.

  • 1. The ORDER and several Degrees, by which this Ʋnity & Oneness is accomplished, and these are here now expressed.
    • 1. The Father is in Christ.
    • 2. Christ is in them; and that which is implied is, that they are one in them.
  • 2. We have the several ENDS, aimed at in this proceeding of the Lord, and those are three.
    • 1. That they may be perfected in one.
    • 2. That the world may know that thou hast sent me.
    • 3. That they may know thou hast loved them, as thou lovest me.

1. As touching The ORDER, our Savior doth not mention and propound it as it is in Nature, but so as it may be best apprehended by us: looks not at things, as they are, but as they appeare to us, and may most fa­miliarly, and easily be conceived by us: and so to lead us by the hand, as it were, to that fountain and first rise of all, and so to the highest step and staire in Heaven which will point at eternity. The Father is in Christ, Christ in the faithful, and so they come to be perfect in one.

We shal follow the method of our Savior, and look at the words, as they lie in the Text handle the several peeces, that the frame of the whole may more throughly be searched into and more fully appear with what plain­ness may be in the Issue. For there be some depths in some passages of the verse which are fitter to be admired, than comprehended, and exceed the reach, and disco­very of the most Judicious Jnterpreter, that I can look into, and indeed, seem to be reserved for another world, when the fruition of the good here mentioned will prove the best interpretation. We will study to be wise unto sobriety.

I in them. Christ is by his Spiritual Presence in a spe­cial manner in the Faithful.

This was signified to the Church of the Jews in the wilderness, when the Arke, the Type of the presence of our Savior, incamped in the midst of all the tribes of Israel, to watch over them, when they rested. Was a Pillar of cloud and fire to go before them, for special guidance, when they arose and marched in their travel and this Moses prized so highly, That unless he went with them, he would not go into Canaan, the land of promise:

The presence of Christ is better than the Land of pro­mise. Exod. 33.15. If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence. Therefore our Savior is said to dwel between the Cherubims and there to give his Ora­cles, his Answer to his people. Isa. 37.16. Psal. 132.14. The Lord professeth; This is my resting place, here will I dwel for ever. Therefore the faithful are said to receive Christ. As ye have received Christ, so walk in him. Christ is said to be in them. 2. Cor. 13.5. Know ye not that Christ is in you, unless ye be re­probates? To dwel in them. Eph. 3.17. To live in them. Gal. 2.20. Yea they live not, but Christ only.

Open here three things.

  • 1. In what respect Christ is said to be in his.
  • 2. What kind of presence this is.
  • 3. After what manner commu­nicated. And here the grounds and the Reasons of the point wil be laid.

1. In what respect Christ is said to be in his.

Answ. If we look at our Savior meerly and only as the second Person in the glorious. Trinity, God blessed for ever, not attending or considering his Human Na­ture, as he filleth Heaven and Earth with his presence, he then would have filled the hearts of the Sons of men in that manner, being present with them, as he is every where by his Omnipresence:

But the gracious & spiritual expression of his presence had never been communicated to Adams posterity: There was so great a distance, such and so strong oppo­sition betwixt the corrupt and polluted nature of man, and the purity of the holy nature of the blessed God, that there was no possibility that ever there should be, any agreement and communion, while man continued in that corrupt condition. Can two walk together, except they be agreed? Am. 3.3. Much less dwel together. Yea the Lord professeth, Psal. 5, 4. Wickedness shal not dwel with him, much less he in it. When his pure eyes cannot endure to behold iniquity with any approbatiō, he shal be thought to take up his abode there? No. What commun [...]o [...] be­tween light and darkness, Christ and Belial? that is, there is none, there can be none. Therefore we must look at Christ, as God-man, as he had taken our nature into union with him, and so in and by it, had made way for the communication of himself to his.

By the nature of man he communicates his spiritual pre­sence to the Sons of men. By this, life is provided for the world of Gods elect. By this they come to be made partakers of it. John, 6.51. I am the liveing bread which came down from Heaven, If any man eat this bread, he shal live for ever. But the question might have been what is that bread? he answers. The bread I wil give is my flesh, which I wil give for the life of the world. Be­cause his humane nature is that mean, whereby life was purchased, and the conduit, by which it was conveyed to lost man. And therefore he adds. Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, ye have no life. And vers. 56. [Page 113] He that eateth my flesh & drinketh my blood dwelleth in me and I in him. So that there is no communion with Christ, no sharing in his spiritual presence and special ver­tue, but by his flesh.

Christ, God and Man is our spiritual good, other­wise he is not, nay cannot be digested for the spiritual re­freshing of the faithful soul.

2. What kind of presence this is.

Answer. In the words of the doctrine, it is a spiritual presence, not carnal or corporal; in so much, that the Apostle if he had known Christ after the flesh, yet he knowes him no more after that manner. 2. Cor. 5.16. For the flesh profits nothing, sayes our Savior; the words I speak, are spirit and life. John. 6.63.

Certain it is, the bodily presence of our Savior is not here attended according to the conceit of the Capernaites, and the Papists at this day: as though it were possible for the very flesh of our Savior to be in al places, or in many places, according to the administrations of the ordinances, which signify or represent the same.

Nor yet can the very flesh of our Savior in it self con­sidered be truly availeable to purchase any spiritual good or communicate any spiritual vertue.

Yet this is certain and for ever to be observed, that the humane nature taken with the deity, and in vertue of the deity, puts forth a power in the expression of his spritual presence; whereof more anon.

And the Lord Christ is thus spiritually present in his Church, as a head may be truly said to be really and rven­tually in the body. For this is the office of our Savior and that in a proper and peculiar manner. He is said to be the Head of his Church, neither the Father nor the Holy Ghost. The Father is the Father of the Church: and Holy Spirit the Comfortēr of the Church: but Christ hath this impropriate in him, that He is the Head. Eph. 4.15. Grow up in [...]o him in al things [Page 114]which is the head, even Christ. And Chap. 5.23. He is the head of the Church, and the Savior of the body.

Because this appertaines to him, not as God onely, for then al the persons had partaked thereof, as common: but as the second person in the Trinity sent of the Father working next in order from him, and as so sent and work­king, terminating the same Nature upon himself, for the great work of our Redemption, and so he is head.

1. Its proper to him to have al Grace firstly in himself, in way and right of communication, for had he not been the son of man and son of God together, the way of Grace and life had been shut up from the sons of Adam. Hebr. 10.20. And in this sence it is said, That with him is the Wel of life. Ps. 36.9. And he is said to be a fountain of living Waters; to have life in himself. Joh. 5.26. And to quicken whom he wil. Joh. 5.21.

2. The right and propriety of immediate dispensation is committed to his hand, of all Grace and good: Of his Grace we receive Grace for Grace. Joh. 1.16. And the Holy Spirit takes of his, not of his own, when he communicates to the Souls of the Saints. Joh. 16.14, 15. He shal shew you al things. He shal glorifie me, for he shal receive of mine. Al things that the Father hath are mine. Therefore said I, He shal take of mine and shew it unto you.

3. The manner how this spiritual presence is communicated.

Answ. It appeares in the Nature and maaner of it in three things,

1. The second person in the glorious Trinity assum­ing our Nature into mystical and personal union with himself, remaining the same person after the union which he was before the union, doth therein become surety [Page 115]for the faithful, and enter into covenant with God the Father in their room, and purchase both Grace and glory in their behalf. For had he not taken the Nature of man, it had been unpossible he should have commu­nicated unto man any good. So the Apostle reasons, when he would shew the way how life came to be de­rived to the seed of Adam, and not unto Angels, gives this as the ground. Hebr. 2.16. For v [...]rely [...]e took not on him the Nature of Angels, but the Seed of Abraham. And therefore these were redeemed, life was conveyed unto these: the other in their sins and sorrows.

And being thus fitted for the place of a Surety, He did in special manner enter upon termes of agreement in the behalf of those, he would do good unto; The happi­ness of those were committed to his care by the Father, and undertaken willingly by himself. Joh. 6.38, 39. This is the will of the Father, that those that he hath given me, I should lose none, but raise them up at the last day.

And he is as careful to attend their spiritual welfare, as may be; therefore he concludes of them, in their times, and answerable to their conditions. I have other Sheep, and those I must bring. Joh. 10.16. And when they are brought, I will in no wise cast away, nor suffer any to take them away. Joh. 6.37.

2. Having thus purchased Grace and glory for them, he hath now both right and liberty to improve al power in Heaven and Earth, to communicate Grace and glory to them.

Yea the Human Nature of our Savior hath liberty & power to let on work any, and all the Attributes in the behalf of the poorest beleever in the world: yea right to send the good Spirit of the Lord for his spiritual re­lief. Joh. 17.2. Thou hast given him (that is Christ) power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. And therefore in verse 4. [Page 116]he saith, I have finished the work, thou gavest me to do. q. d. Christ hath nothing to do in this vale of [...]eare [...], but search ou [...], and seek up some scattered and wildering Servants of the Lord. Yea liberty to send the spirit upon this imployment. Joh. 15.26. When the com­forter is come, whom I will send you from the Father. Yea makes this his main Errand to heaven in his ascensi­on. Joh. 16.7. It is expedient &c. If I depart, I will send him unto you.

3. He doth improve this power and the operation of the Spirit to close the Soule with himself; and to hold the bent of the heart towards him for ever. 1 Cor. 6.17. He that is joyned to the Lord is one Spirit.

As by his spirit he sanctified our Nature and took it into personal union with himself and gave in subsistence, which of it self it had not, nor could attain: So by the operation of his Spirit he prepares the Soul for himself, carries it in the promise to himself, and acts it upon him­self: The Soul moved by the vertue of the Spirit, moves to and staies upon the Lord Christ. As in the Eccho, the Air moved by the voice, in such manner returns the same voice, by vertue of its own motion. Come unto me. I come, Lord. And not only carries and closeth the Soul with himself, but holds it in this holy bent to himself that way, Christ-ward, Heaven-ward.

This is like the growing up with Christ, being as scions ingrafted into him, as the true Vine, and so are truly, and so called, sons, as the scions united to the stock, may fitly be called the Sons thereof; and hence, Christ is stiled, The eternal Father. Isa. 9.6. Be­hold a Son is given, and this son is a Father, and an e­ternal Father, and begets us as sons unto his Father, and will deliver us up unto him, at the great day. Here am I and the Children which thou hast given me. Hebr. 2.13. This is that which Christ calls his abiding in us. If I abide in you, and you in me. Joh. 15.4.

The Reason in a word is this,

He that is the life of the faithful, must be in the faith­ful: So is Christ. Gal. 2.20. Col. 3.4. When Christ who is our life &c.

USE 1.

CAUTION: To al, especially the wicked and enemies of the Saints: That they do not offend and wrong them, or do the least evil to them because they do wrong to the Lord Jesus, and he so takes it, as to himself. Act. 9. Saul, why persecutest thou me? And the sufferings of the Saints for a good cause are cal­led the sufferings of Christ. 2. Cor. 1.5. Thus the Lord sends to Sennacherib. Isa. 37.28. I know thy going out, and thy coming in, and thy rage against me. It was bent against Hezekiah and the people of Jerusa­lem, but it was against the Lord, in them.

True it is, The wicked see not, know not, consider not this, being blinded with Ignorance and Malice; and therefore Paul asks the question, when Christ speaks, Who art thou Lord? q. d. I own not thy speech, nor understand thy person. Our Savior answers, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest.

Yea this wil be for the condemnation of their persons and confusion of their faces, at the day of Judgment, when the Saints in this sentence shal be honored, and they set down, for ever abased before their faces. Depart ye cursed &c. For I was in prison and ye visited me not &c. Why, When Lord saw we thee &c. They were not acquainted with the presence of our Savior. He add, In that ye did it not to one of these, ye did it not to me. Therefore if the Argument was strong, whereby our Savior would perswade all to be feareful of offending, even one of these little ones, though they were alone, and though little: because [...]hat in Heaven their Angels do alwaies behold the f [...]ce o [...] their heavenly [Page 118]Father; ready to attend his pleasure, to execute his wil for their preservation, and for the ruine of their enemies. Math. 18.10. Then much more, this Ar­gument. He that is Lord of glory and hath all power in Heaven and Earth is in them, and suffers with them; and therefore cannot but protect them, and relieve both his and their wrongs: Is in Heaven at Gods right hand, and is also in their hearts.

USE 2.

To desire the fellowship and to delight in the society of the faithful: For we shal keep no worse company than that of our Savior. Though happily they dwel in a smo [...]ky cottage, have course fa [...]e, be in a mean con­dition; yet if Christ dwel in them, we need not be ashamed to converse with them, and own them. Go in to their companies, as resolving to go to Court. For where the King is, the Court is: his presence makes it. We should look at the faithful, as the great Heires of glory, and Courtiers of Heaven: we cannot injoy their society, but we may also come to the sight of our Sa­vior, and speech with him. So, 1. Joh. 1.3. This we write, that you may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with the S [...]n. So they; Zach. 8.13. And therefore as the A­postle Hebr. 13.2. Be careful to entertain strangers, for thereby some have entertained Angels unawares: so be ready to entertain the Saints, the poor members of Christ, hereby we shal entertain Christ. Receive such servants into your families &c.

USE 3.

Hence by way of TRYAL, we way gain undoubted evidence unto our Hearts, that we are indeed Beleevers, and truly beloved of God and his Son: If once we find [Page 119]this blessed Son the Lord Jesus by his spiritual and speci­al presence in our souls, Its a never failing argument which will give in assurance of our good condition, be­yond all that the Divels can object, or our fears and discouraged hearts can question. The Apostle puts it beyond the possibility of any cavil. If Christ be given to thee, how shal not God, but give al things Els? that is, hold this ground, and make that good, Thy car­nal reason, by al the deluded Devise, whereby it would daunt thy heart, it cannot put a colorable appearance of any possibility, but that al things, that are good, should be given thee. He that hath the Son, hath life. Make that sure, and then al the rest is safe, past al per­adventure, nay beyond dispute. For al the jealousies and suspicious that arise in our own hearts, al the dark­ness and difficulties that appear in al discoveries that are made: all the questions that come upon the most sear­ching inquiries and examinations touching any soundness of any Grace, or any work of Grace, and so of the sin­cerity of the heart, and the truth and goodness of a mans estate; If any doubt arise, whether sure or no, certain or no, in conclusion it is lastly resolved, settles and cen­ters, as they say, Here: If Issues from our not-union with Christ. This may be done by some other power, proceed from some other principle, than the spirit of the Lord Jesus. This is not a certain fruit of our union to Christ, or the inhabitation of the spirit of Jesus in us. And in Issue, unless it lead necessarily to a Christ, or be derived infallibly from him, and the interest we have in covenant with him. Its no more than that a man may have, who hath no Grace: Its no more, but that which a man may do, that hath no part in a Savior.

And hence, al such evidences fal to the ground and utterly fail. And in truth, the weakness of expressions in this kind, men taking shews for substance, seemings and some appearances of things for the truth of things them­selves, hath been the cause, that many have been cousened [Page 120]with their own conceipts, and apprehensions: many have denied all evidences, because those which they had and too much trusted unto, were fall, and failed them utterly at times of need. Therefore the Holy Ghost presseth this so instantly, and checks the failing in it so sharply. 2 Cor. 13.5. Prove and examin your selves, whether ye be in the Faith or no, Acted by, and carried by the power of Faith. Why? how shal we discern that? Know ye not that Christ is in you? If once that be brought about, the business is offa hand, and its a sin and a shame ye should not. Ʋnless ye be reprobates. that is drossy men, Christians that have not the right mettal, are not of the right make: you should not but know this.

This presence special and spiritual discovers it self in two things, Not to trouble you with more;

1. He that hath this presence, hath somthing, and finds somthing above the bounds of al created abilities, that even the greatest sufficiency of the creature, the best indeavours and improvements of the best meanes in providence could reach unto, A wisedom beyond all a mans Wit and readiest subtilties and largest apprehensions: a power beyond all the power of Nature, beyond what a mans abilities and dexterity can compass, education give, skil of art and sciences at­tain, practise and experience find out: beyond al the moral impressions, that the power of all meanes and help under Heaven can leave upon the Soul.

It was said of Saul, that the Lord gave him another heart, than formerly he had, he had the spirit of Go­vernment, a special ability to the discharge of the place that the Lord had called him unto: So it is with every Christian, he hath another heart, than ever before, and performes his duties from another power, than ever he did before,Gal. 2.20. even by the power of Christ. So the Apostle professeth, He did not live, nor pray, nor preach. It was not abilities of nature which he had: not knowledg [Page 121]of Art and learning, in which he excelled, by which he prayed: but it was the power and gracious presence of the Holy Spirit of Christ, that acted and carried out al those abilities, yea that spiritual power of grace he had to this work, either of praying or preaching. So 2. Cor. 13.3. If any man require a testimony of Christ speak­ing in me. And therefore its the reason, which he gives, why the things of God are known by beleevers, and not known to the greatest of the world. 1. Cor. 2.11. No man knowes the things of God, but the Spirit of God and we have not received the spirit of the world, but the spirit of God. Nay he comes yet lower, to the very ex­pression of the words: Which things we speak, not in the words which mans wisdome teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth. And the Saints often find, and profess it, they are helped and carried beyond al the abi­lities they have, yea beyond al the power of al the grace they have. That look, as when we see a swadling Child left in his Cradle in a lower room, come againe, we find it laid in the highest loft or Chamber in the house, each man easily concludes: There was another power than that it had of it self, that conveyed it thither. So here: when the poor and ignorant amongst men; come to know and do the things that are spiritual; Eph. 2.10. His workmanship. They are inlightned and inabled, be­yond al they had, or ever once apprehended; or could come into their own thoughts, there was a higher power, even the presence and assistance of a God, the Lord Jes­us himself to help. Math. 11.25. I thank thee O Father, that thou hast revealed these things to babes: and adds, no man knowes the Father, but the Son. Therefore the Prophet begs, that he might not be left to his spirit: Psal. 143.10. Teach me the way to thee, thy Spirit is Good; q. d. My spirit is naught.

2. Where the presence of Christ is, The soul at the lowest ebb, and the greatest under, that ever it comes unto, it is yet ever panting after a Savior, cannot [...]est [Page 122]before it come to him. Isa. 26.8. The desires of our Souls are towards thy name, and to the remembrance of thee. In the greatest desertion, that can befal them, the greatest temptation that can assault: by the one, they are disinabled to do, what they would; by the other opposed and hindred from attaining that which they do indeavor. Yet they set themselves that way. Though they see; they are like Captives, and under the Tiranny of their distempers; they find, they do not: yea may be at such an under, and in a forlorne condition, that they conclude, they are past Hope and expectation; never shal be recovered: yet their hearts bless them, that injoy that happy estate; and Oh that they might. That as its said of the ungodly: They set themselves in a way that is not good: These contrariwise, set themselves in the aime and bent of their heart. Rom. 7. As the Pilot that hath the Helm in his hand, though, it may be, the wind is too stiff, and the stream too strong, and al against him, that he cannot make way forward, nay, it may be, is turned back again, by contrary stormes, yet he tacks about, and keeps her to that point stil:

So here: when the Lord Christ takes the Helm of the heart of a beleever in his own hand, though the wind and tyde of the most violent temptation, for the while, stop his course: yet the bent of the heart is that way: My Soul followeth hard after thee. Psal. 63.8.

USE 4.

This shews the excellency of the Saints, even in the meanest and worst condition, above the wicked and un­godly, when they are in the greatest ruffe and Sove­raignty, that they can attain unto in this world.

The Saints are the Temple of the liveing God. 2. Cor. 6.16. Their Souls are the throne, where the Lord sits and shews the riches of the glory of his Grace and mercy; the habitation where he dwels, and takes up his abode: [Page 123]the Kingdom where he rules by the power of his Grace, the Guidance and Government of his blessed Spirit, and the scepter of his word.

True he exerciseth the Soveraignty of his power and justice upon the wicked on Earth, and the damned in Hel, as amongst his Enemies and Out-laws, whose re­bellion he wil revenge, and whose ruine he wil work, according to the desert of their works.

But his Children and servants are his loyal and loving subjects, amongst whom he sets up the Kingdom and exerciseth the government of his Grace and mercy, and they in love and loyalty submit thereunto, and advance the same. The hearts of his are, as I may say, the Pa­radise of Gods pleasure, in which he walks, and takes his content. So the Lord promiseth. I will walk a­mong them. So the wise man professeth: Wisedom delights in the habitable part of the world. Prov. 8.31. This is my habitation for ever, here I delight to dwel.

But it is not so with the wicked, its not so with them. Those miserable Souls of theirs are the throne where Satan sits, that Synagogue where he is worshipped, and even where his throne is seated. Rev. 2. The habi­tation and Hel where he abides. Math. 12.45. — Came and found the House swept and garnished: The Kingdom of darkness in which he rules. Eph. 2.2. He rules in the hearts of the Children of disobedience, There he sports himself, and there he finds and takes greatest contentment. Because he hath such, as will heare and entertain his suggestions, and do his wil and lusts: and therefore they are said to be Satans, and of the Devil, yea to be Devils.

Look therefore what difference there is between Hea­ven and Hell, the Kingdome of light, and the Kingdom of darkness, the habitation of Devils, and the temple of the Lord: Such is the excellency of the Saints, such is the miserable condition of the ungodly.

USE, 5.

Here is matter of marvelous and unspeakable COM­FORT to al the Saints, to cure us or al Fears, and de­liver us from al discouragements that ever we shal meet withal in this World. The Lord Jesus is a Helper, a strong Helper, ready to save: so the Apostle Phil. 4, infers, The Lord is at hand. Are Devils at hand to tempt thee? are Enemies subtil, and mighty at hand to persecute, and oppose thee? are thy fears and discou­ragements at hand to over-bear thee? The Lord Jesus is at hand, neer t [...]ee, nay, in thee, to succor, and supply, add satisfie.

1. Comfort in al thy Spiritual tryals, when Satan grows most fel, thy corruptions most strong, and thy heart begins to fail thee in the apprehension of thine In­firmities, as that thou shalt never be able to subdue, to overcome, nay, not to resist. Behold, 1 John, 4.4. be they never so great; Greater is he that is in thee, than be that is in the world. Though thou beest never so weak, and thine Enemies nevers so great, Christ is greater than al Devils, than al distempers, than al the power of darkness, and malice of the wicked.

Thou seest and findest a Law in they Members rebelling against the Law of thy Mind, and carrying thee captive. Behold the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ, shal free thee from the Law of Sin, Rom, 8.3. Here is Law a­gainst Law, Spirit against Spirit, Christ against thy Corruption: That Spirit is in Christ, and Christ is in thee. Therefore our Saviour concludes, None shall take them our of my hand; neither head of Satan, nor hand and power of Sin and Grave; John, 10.28.

2. Comfort against WANTS and Necessities, that may surprize, and over-bear thee. Thy Pressures, and Calamities are present, they pinch, and sit sad: The Lord Jesus is present to sweeten thy sorrows with the sense of his Love, and to supply al with the fulness of his sufficient Grace.

It would refreshany in sickness, had he but the Physi­tian by him, that could heal. It would refresh the Child in Misery and want, were the tender mother by, that would pity, could relieve. Our Saviour is al, and more than al; he can answer al thy desires, and he is present, and apprehensive of thy grievances. In all their afflictions, he was afflicted: He is in thee, he shares in al thy sorrows: Why persecutest thou me? So David, Psal. 73.26. My heart, and my flesh, al inward, and outward helps fail, but the Lord is the strength of my heart; his wisdom was in his mind, his subjection in his wil, his sweet calms and quiet in his distempered af­fections, that strengthened al.

USE, 6.

Matter of Humiliation to all the Saints, who have Christ so neer to them, so spiritually, so specially pre­sent with them, and yet they know so little of him, are so little acquainted with him: As Paul in another case, Acts, 17.23. touching the Altar set up to the unknown God, he answers, Whom ye ignorantly worship, him I shew unto you, for he is not far from you; for in him we live, and move, and have our being. So of Christ, whom ye ignorantly worship, and desire to see, and en­quire of Christ by Christ: As Mary asked of the Lord, where the Lord Jesus was. O! they go weeping, and seeking after a Savior, complain they cannot hear of him, &c. mourn after him. He is not far from you, nay, is in you, and works al your works for you. Your Consciences have been in terror, and perplexity, and a­gain quelled Tweetly, and calmed: it was Christ that did it. Your Spirits were sunk down in discouragements, and knew not how to recover themselves, and yet beyond hope supported: it was Christ that did it. And there­fore, as our Saviour complained, and checked Philip, John, 14.9. Have I been so long with you, and dost thou not know me, Philip? Hath Christ so long striven [Page 126]with those rebellious? so long comforted, quickened, in weaknesses strengthened you, in wants supplied, hel­ped you to cal? so often heard, so long born with al that baseness? and do ye not yet know Jesus Christ? Com­plain of thine own blindness, and heedlesness: The Lord Jesus was in this place, in this heart, and I was not aware of him; wretch that I am, Gen. 28.16.

USE, 7.

Here is matter of Admiration, even to force us to stand amazed at the endless compassion of a Savior. Why should he pass by so many? as good, and better than our selves, as we came out of the Lyons of Adam, yet to knock at our doors, cal upon us? John, 14.22. Lord, why wilt thou shew thy self to us, and not unto the world? Why shed his blood for us? send his Spirit to us? why pass by so many provocations, and pity, and pardon us? As Solomon, Behold the Heaven is not a­ble to contain thee, how shal this so poor a Tent? So thou of thy heart; and is it possible? Or as she, How comes it, that the Mother of my Lord is come unto me? It was Moses his Dispute, Deut. 4.34. Did ever God assay? &c. Did ever people hear God? &c. But they have God dwelling in them.

USE, 8. Of Exhortation.

1. To be affected with the presence of so great a Ma­jesty, and so affected with his presence, as to see our own weakness, and worthlesnes. When God had Schooled Job out of the Whirl-whind, see how he sits down aba­sed, Behold, I am vile. How the Centution esteemed the presence of our Saviour in the daies of his Humilia­tion? Behold, I am not worthy thou should'st come un­der my Roof. How we of our Saviours Spiritual pre­sence now in glory? to come so neer, as to dwel in these [Page 127]wretched hearts of ours.

2. Therefore study to give suitable entertainment, and welcom, to so glorious a Guest; set al our abilities on work, as Abraham his Servants, that we may answer the coming and kindness of the Lord.

And that's in Two things:

  • 1 Content him with the provision we make.
  • 2 Honor him with attendance that is meet.

1 Study his Content.

Walk in all well-pleasing, Col. 1.10. 2 Cor. 5.9. Be Ambitious to please: As with persons of great quality, we enquire of their followers what wil please, what Diet they desire, we provide it if can be purchased with money: So here.

This in four things:

  • 1. Bring truth of Spirit in al our performances. Psal. 51.6. Thou lovest truth in the inner parts: So Heze­kiah, Remember how I have walked before thee with. an upright heart, Isa. 38.3. God seeks for such, who is a God of Truth, just and right, Deut. 32.4. only the heart, of al the Sacrifice.
  • 2. Present him with nothing but his own. That which he commands not, he accepts not, Who required these things? No man knows what wil please him, be­fore he shew his pleasure, Matth. 15.9. They worship him in vain, when they invent dishes of their own.
  • 3. Let the Diet be fresh, and new dressed. That which is old and stale, it is not wholsom, much less ho­norable, to set it before a stranger. It must be fresh, fat, and good, and new killed. Psal. 98.1. David speaks of a new Song of Thanksgiving. As in the Shew-bread, which was dayly set before the Lord: it must be set on fresh, in the several seasons, Levit. 24.8. Exod. 25.30, each Sabboth.

God gives a new Command: It's an old Command, but renewed with fresh colors, a new Covenant Jer. 31.31. So we, bring new Love, Faith, and Repentence, [Page 128]renew, and stirr up a fresh thy Graces.

4. Humility and feare. Mic. 6.8. Isa. 66.2. Men converse with marvailous underness and awfullness, before great personages, when they are sleight and negli­gent in the presence of their underlings. So must we be awful and feareful when we come into Christs presence, to be negligent here is to dishonor and to distast him: it is to use him, as an underling.

2. Honor him with our attencance.

1. Attend him with gladness and cheerfullness of heart. Joy is a sit Chamberlain to wait; comes and goes readily. Deut. 28.47. With glad hearts. Act. 2.46. Eat their meat together with joyfulness of heart God loves a cheerful look, not lowring.

2. With a ready watchfulness, to listen to the inti­mation of Gods mind. Observe every look: take notice of the least beck, listen to the lowest speech, watch every passage and appearance of the pleasure of the Lord. Luk. 12.35. Stand with your loynes girt, and your Lamps burning, waiting for his coming. Have al trim; our Lamps and Vessels. Here Lord. See what God would, and suit answerably.

Thou in me.

We have handled the first degree, attending the order of our Savior, who looks at them, as they appeare to us; and therefore so propounds them, as they may be most easily apprehended.

We are now come to the first fountain and original, from whence this spiritual priviledg and unity hath his rise dispensed and communicated, That is, from the In-being of the Father in Christ. This is the highest degree, further than which, we cannot ascend. God the Father in Christ, and he in him: Christ in them, and [Page 129]they in Christ, and so in the Father also.

Hence two Points to discuss.

  • 1. The Father is in the Son. Or, There is a mutual subsistence of the Father in the Son, and of the Son in the Father.
  • 2. The Subsistence of the Father in the Son, in the first rise, or Original; whence the Saints come to be one with the Son, and the Father.

The first of these, we had it propounded by way of comparison, to lay forth the manner of that oneness and unity, for which our Saviour here, praies the Saints might attain unto. And we then reserved the ful handling of it unto this place: the words in the foregoing Verse are so express, as nothing more.

As thou in me, and I in thee.

And it is not for nothing that our Savior carries the thoughts of his Disciples, and keeps them there in the setled, continual consideration thereof, as if it were the hinge; upon which al happiness and comfort doth hang, and therefore we should stay in a kind of unmovable at­tendance thereon.

When Philip made that great request unto our Lord Jesus, as that which would give satisfying content, be­yond al exception; Shew us the Father, and it shall suffice, John, 14.8. Jesus answered, verse 9. He that hath seen me, hath seen the Father. And the Ground and Foundation of al this knowledge, and so this saving comfort, he renders to be this; verse 10. Beleevest thou not that the Father is in me, and I in the Father? And yet, as though al this were not enough, he makes them take up their stand in the steady, and most serious contemplation, and through considering, and beleeving this Truth: Beleevest thou not, &c. Heleeve me, that the Father is in me, and I am in the Farther, at least for the Works sake, q. d. The weight of al the Work lies [Page 130]here, hold the heart upon this hinge, keep open this door, and the evidence, and certainty of al saving Truth and Comfort, wil come in, yea, of al power, and spiri­tual ability to do al good, as in the words following. 2. A ready, and enlarged Communication of al good unto us: Whatever ye ask in my Name, that will I do. Shut up this passage, or turn aside from attendance unto this Truth: dam up this Fountain, we dry up al the stream of Spiritual Power and Comfort, that would come into our souls.

It is then a Foundation-Truth of the deepest search, and that which hath a Store-house of Heavenly strength, and refreshing laid up in it.

We shal open the Nature of it in three things.

  • 1 The proper Ground from whence this In-being is­sues, and proceeds.
  • 2 The ready way, by which the Nature of it, may righty be apprehended.
  • 3 How it may be attended in our Savior, as God and Man.

To the First.

The proper and peculiar Ground, from whence this In-being proceeds, may be expressed in two Conclusions, thus:

1. This In-being of subsistence of the Father in the Son, & of the Son in the Father, is not firstly from the Essence, or Deity, considered according to it self, or in it self as some have conceived: As thus; Because the Deity, or Es­sence, which is in the Father, is in the Son, therefore the Father also is in the Son: for this is neither safe, nor sound, but a dangerous mistake; because by the same reason, it may be concluded; That the Son is in himself, or the Father is in the Father. For the same Essence, or Deity (being but one) which is in the Father, is in the Son also; and then the reason would follow on like manner, thus: Where the Deity, or Essence of the God-head, which appertains to the Son, is, there is the Son. [Page 131]But the Deity of the Son, is in the Son. Therefore the Son is in the Son.

2. This In-being each in other, though it issues next­ly, and immediately from the persons, yet not as they are in themselves considered, without respect to the Es­sence; but as they are subsistences in the same Essence, taking that in with them, to make up a ful, and compleat Ground; from whence this mutual subsisting in each o­ther may be inferred; as thus:

  • 1. Not only because they have the same Essence.
  • 2. Not because they are distinct persons alone.

But because they are distinct persons subsisting in other. For this mutual In-being requires both distinction and conjunction. They must be two, for one cannot be in it self: and they must be together with the same Nature, or else they cannot be each in o­ther. As we see in the Creatures constantly, as a Fa­ther, or Son; Buyer, and Seller: though they be per­sons in Relation, yet because they be in several Natures, separate one from another, therefore they cannot be said to be each in other. Thus for the Ground of this In-being.

2. The ready way how to apprehend it, is made good in four Particulars.

  • 1. The same Essence of the God-head, doth equally, and indifferently in the whol Nature of it, belong to all the Persons in the Deity: So that whatsoever is said of one, may be affirmed of the other. They are al Eternal, al Infinite, al Omnipotent, Omniscient, &c. because al God. As a man may be said to teach himself, and so is a Master, and Scholler; a Master, as he teacheth; and a Scholler, as he is taught. Now the whol man is both, not a part of him a Scholler, a part of him a Teacher; but the whol Nature of Man bears up both Relations.
  • 2. Hence the Persons in the God-head, are distinct, truly amongst themselves, yet cannot be separated, or divided one from another; but where-ever the God-head [Page 132]is, they are, and where-ever one is, al are; because the whol Essence is in every one, and every one with the whol Essence.
  • 3. Subsistence of the Persons, looks at the Essence, yet not as it is Essence barely, but as it is with the Rela­tive Properties; and so those Relative Properties by their Mutual Respect or Relation, give being each to other.
  • 2. Subsistence looks at the Essence, as Essence, and so they attend upon, it adjoyn to it, and do accompany it, as the manner of the thing, doth the thing.

As the Subsistences, or Persons, look at the Essence as Essence, upon which they do attend, and are adjoyned; so they are with the Essence, and one with another.

As they look at the Essence, not as Essence, but as with his Relative Properties; as the Nature of Relati­on, and al things under Relation requires, they are then causes one of another, give being each to other, and are one in another.

A word to both.

1. As adjoined to the Essence; for ye have heard, that these Relations are not qualities inherent in the sub­ject, but attendants; and then I say, they are al with the same whol Essence, and so one with another. So Wis­dom, the Lord Christ, Prov. 8.27. When he prepa­red the Heavens, I was there, when he gave to the Son his decree, ver. 30. I was with him. John, 1.1. The Word with God, that is, the Father, and it was God, that is, had the Essence of the Deity.

2. As the Subsistences look at the Essence with his Relative Properties, so in Relation each Person gives being each to another, and is one in another, John, 14.9. The Father dwels in Christ. That cannot in any propriety of speech be said of the Essence, that the Per­sons dwel in the God-head, because they are Relations, and therefore no impression in the subject. So, hence our Savior is said to be in the bosom, and come from the Bosom of the Father. Hence he is said, Joh. 10.15. [Page 133] As the Father knowes me, even so I know the Father; Which Issues from this relation. For its that which appertaines to the Nature of Relates: because they are mutual causes one of another: the knowledge of the one is the knowledg of the other. And this also seems to be the meaning of that. Joh. 10.30. I and my Father are one. The Jews they conceived, he blasphemed, because he made himself God. Verse, 33. Our Savi­or defends himself thus. Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sent, that he blasphemeth because I said, I am the Son of God? verse, 36. And so the Argument may well stand, that they are one in relation and so one in another: for having said, that none shall pluck his sheep out of his hand, he gives this relation; because the Father, who hath given them him, is greater than al, and none can pluck them out of his hand. If none can puck them out of my Fathers hand, then not out of mine: If my Father and I be one, then it follows: but we are one: One in this reference and relation one to another; and so in this action of sending and being sent, both as one, attend the accomplishment of this work. We here want examples to Illustrate: because the creature cannot afford in propreity of speech, one essence to relation: yet a little to help, take that which is fami­liar. As my hand is closing and closed: These two as they look to the hand, are with it, and with one another. As they look to the hand closing. And so closed, closing and closed are causes each of other, and one in another. So in the deity: these properties of knowing and be­ing known, like closing and being closed with it self, as they look at the essence or God-Head, they are with it, and one with another.

4. This subsisting each in other is not an Individual relative porperty, but a notional respect, which attend al the relations of the persons in common, & therefore can­not make any distinct personality. But appertaines to al, and is and may be affirmed of al, as relatives giving being [Page 134]each to other, they abide each in other. As the Scripture phrase, the Father dwels in the Son.

Three Things for Explication: Viz.

How this may be attended in our Savior, as God and man: for so he seems to speak of himself in this place, in the several passages. For so he is in the faith­ful: so he received glory, and gave glory. verse, 22. So he was sent. verse, 18.

In such mysteries, that we may be wise unto sobriety, and yet not slorthful; neither too curious, to search more than we need, nor yet too careless, to neglect what God reveales: we shal study to walk in a safe path: and therefore I briefly answer generally, particularly.


This In-being or subsistence in the Father belongs firstly to the Son as second person, and to the human Nature so far, as the relation of Sonship leaves some im­pression, and so alteration thereupon, according to the Nature and condition thereof. So that the second person in the Trinity is no other, nor acts no otherwise than he did, in himself.

But this manner of existing or acting appears in the Human Nature and leaves new impressions in a special manner, and the Father also in and by him: and that in a three-fold regard.

Viz. Of

  • Ʋnion.
  • Mission.
  • Operation,

The Father his act in the son, and the son from the Father, discover new im­pressions here, and all of them in a special manner fol­low these relations.

1. The second person takes the Human Nature into Personal UNION with himself: so that there are not two Sons, but one son: and therefore as the son is in the Father, the Human Nature, by the son, may be said so to be, being one person with him. For as the Father gives being to the Son, and the son receiving re­turnes [Page 135]his being unto the Father: So the Human Nature hath a total dependance upon the Son, and reference to him, and in him to the Father. And therefore as to be reflected is the property of the second person, or looking back to the Father, or returning his subsistence: So our Nature in Christ, looks to Christ, having a total de­pendance upon Christ, and being one person with him, looks as the second person wholly to the Father. And whether the return of the Saints in God, and of al things in them, be not firstly from hence, inquire, it wil do you no harm.

2. In regard of MISSION, The son in regard of this relation is said to be sent; that is a communication of work in order, from one to another, so as the second person works from the Father, he originally from him­self. The second person takes the Human Nature into this order of Mission, So that al Grace is bestowed upon it, and it is sent upon commission, in the Mission of the second person, to which it is now united, to dispense all Grace according to the will of the Father. Joh. 16.15. All that the Father hath is mine.

Thus he becomes the Head of the Church. For the second person in the Trinity, sent of the Father, works next in order from him.

As so sent and working, terminates the Human Na­ture upon himself, for the great work of Redemption. And so its proper to him, bringing our Human Nature under the commission offending, to have al Grace firstly in way of right of communication. He being thus sent, and having the commission of al Grace, he is head of the Church, neither the Father nor the Holy Spirit in pro­priety of speech. Thus said to give him authority to Judg, because he is the son of man. Joh. 5.27. That is because he is taken into personal union and so under that commission, as sent from the Fathers as the second person was. Thus usually he shews authority. Joh. 14.20. The word, which you hear, is not mine, but [Page 136]the Fathers which sent me. And verse, 26. The Fa­ther sends the comforter in the name of Christ; therefore the commission was first his.

3. In regard of OPERATION. For the second person, in vertue of that his relation, he not only hath commission from another, but works from another, and so executes the wil of the Father. And thus lastly the second person takes the Human Nature into this dispen­sation, to work al from the Father, and that the second person doth, by vertue of this relation, and so of this In­being of the Father in him. See the very ground given. Joh. 10.10. The word, I speak is not mine, but the Father that dwels in me &c. Joh. 8.38. For the works sake, bele [...]ve, that the Father is in me, and I in the Father. Joh. 5. The Son doth nothing of him­self, but what he seeth the Father do. Issue the whol, Thus.

What ever the second person, and Son of God, as such, doth: that he doth by vertue of his eternal genera­tion from the Father, and from his abiding in him. But as Son he takes our Nature into personal union with himself and as Son advanceth it to that priviledg and liberty, to set al the Attributes on work, and to send the Holy Ghost, yea sends al Officers, and appoints al Offices, and blesseth them.

Therefore by vertue of this his eternal generation from the Father, and his abiding in him, this Union, Mission, and Operation of the Human Nature proceeds.

The second person, by this eternal generation from the Father, and abiding in him, is reflected upon the Fa­ther, and as the Father hath an Eye only to the son, in giving the susibstence of a Son: the Son hath an Eye to the Father, in returning the subsistence of a son to him, they wholly give and take.

So the Son, uniting the Human Nature into one per­son, holds it in reference and dependance with himself upon the Father. All is communicated to him as sent, [Page 137]and so to the Human Nature: All acted by him, and so by the Human Nature.

The In-being or existence of the Father in the Son, is the first rise, whence the unity of the faith­ful with the Father and the Son comes to be per­fected.

Hither our Savior ascends, and here he staies, Leads us to the Well-Head, and fountain, whence our spirit­ual wellface, and everlasting good Issues. And this is the highest of al, and higher we cannot go; beyond this visible world, and al creatures therein, even to Heaven, and in Heaven, above Angels to God, and in the God-Head, to the first original in the glorious and blessed Trinity, and the first act in that origination.

To this accords that of the Apostle, each place adds mutual light unto the other. Col. 3.3. We are dead, and our life is hid with Christ in God. Christ is the Treasurer, but the Father is the Author. Christ is the keeper, but the Father is the first Appointer thereof. For so you must understand the Name God, not essentially, but personally, being put in opposition and reference unto Christ, our life is hid with Christ, but Christ, and life, and al is in God, in the Father. Upon this ground it is, and to the like purpose, that the Apostle carries the hearts of the Corinthians in the work of their calling unto this consideration, as that, wherein the lowest part of the foundation of our comfort lies, 1 Cor. 1.30. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God in made unto us wisedom, righteousness, Sanctification, and Redemption. Christ is all, even complete Redemption, who delivers from the power and presence of al evil, and gives all Grace: quickens what he gives, perfects what he quickens, owns what he perfects.

But he is made this to us, not of himself, but of the Father, for so stil the word, and Name of God is to be taken, as appears, verse, 24. Christ is the power of God, and the Wisedom of God. Christ is made our [Page 138]Redemption, and we are made his redeemed ones, and the Father makes both, he our Redemption, and we his redeemed.

And this is the cause, why the Apostle is so inlarged, inlaying for [...]h the soveraignty of the Fathers work, be­yond al the compass either of the being of the creature, or the Graces and apprehensions of all Churches. Eph. 4.5, 6. There is one Lord Jesus, one Faith, and one Baptisme, one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you al. Above al, even in the highest power that is dispensed in his Church; Christ is the Head and Husband, the Holy Spirit the comforter, God is the Father. Through al the operations and administrations that are in the Chur­ches and Graces dispensed, He sends his Son to the great work of our Redemption. God was in Christ recon­ciling the world to himself. 2 Tim. 1.4. — Given us Grace in Christ Jesus before the world was. He sends the Spirit in the work of Application. Joh. 26. In all the Saints, as drawing and conjoining the hearts of the faithful, as fellow Brethren, unto himself with the Father and one to another in him, and for him. So one in relation here, as wel as in a Savior.

And from hence lastly it is we meet usually with that phrase, which may receive a right explication and true understanding from t he point in hand. 1 Then. 1.1. To the Church of the Thessalonians in God the Father, and in our. Lord Jesus. And that so al the Churches, and al the faithful, are in God the Father, as the Father of the Churches in the Son, as the Head of the Church.

In the Father, who out of the Authority or priority of order, not of dominion, first appoints our Savior to the word, and the work to him.

In the Lord Jesus, as he is appointed by the Mission, to work from the Father, and by commission sent as man, united to the second person, to have al Graces first, in way and right of communication to the Church.

The Father he knows the Son, there is the Deity, and al the excellencies thereof, reflecting, exemplifying, or characterising upon it self: where the expressions of the Deity, and all the excellency thereof, exemplifying from it self, that's to be in the Father, that is, it is in the ver­tue of the Father, that it is so done.

The Son again as the Character reflected, or exem­plified, and where this examplification, or excellencies returned again is to be seen, so far the Soul may be said to be in Christ that is in his vertue not looking so much at the work or thing done, for that Issues from all, but at the manner of doing, and carry that along, it wil di­rest and not deceive. Open the Doctrin,

  • 1. Recal what this Oneness is.
  • 2. How its Perfected.

The first I shal not trouble you withal, because I have heretofore opened it at large, only mention so much, as you may keep your Eye or consideration upon it, as the White or Mark, that you may discern, how the following expressions hit it. Briefly then,

This unity, (as ye have heard) is not the Oneness of affection amongst the Saints, but the Oneness of relation they have to God in Christ, as his Adopted ones. One with us, nor one with themselves.

This Oneness of Relation lies here, in that our Saviour doth not bring the Souls of the faithful in neerest relati­ons of dearest love, as adopted Sons, but also into that spiritual intercourse of peculiar and divine operation of God upon the Soul, whereby the Soul returnes unto God, to do al, and to take al.

To do al form himself in man, not man to do it.

To receive all to himself by man, not man to take it, which was otherwise in the covenant of works.

The Lord Jesus having fitted the Soul for himself, and united the Soul to himself, and made the Soul accep­table to the Father in his Blood. He sends the spirit of Adoption into the hearts of his, sets their hearts for God, [Page 140]and holds the bent of their he [...]rts towards him. This is the gracious look of the Father. The faithful, the spir­itual being of Sonship,

  • 1. Fasten to God in Christ, as the fountain of life,
  • 2. Leave their hearts there, and abide, to be wholly acted by the influence and assistance of his Spirit,
  • 3. And to hold up the excellency thereof; not I, but Christ, by the power of his might. Mark that to be acted by the influence of the spirit, not by a principle of Grace in our selves.

This is the Oneness, to be carried beyond the covenant of works, and the work of Grace, or any principle there­of in our selves: but to cling about God in Christ, that he may act al in us and by us, and we hold out him in al our works.

2. How is this said to be perfected?

We shall better understand this, if we a little consider the imperfection of this Oneness, and wherein it appears: the ful removal of those weaknesses wil be the perfecting of this priviledg in our Souls.

This imperfection lies in three things.

1. In the feebleness and unsoundness of our spirit when we do not abide in the Lord, we do out leave our selves under the power and stream of the Spirit of pro­mise, in and through which, al spiritual vertue is dis­pensed, and the influence of the Spirit is conveyed unto us. But either we are crowded and thrust off, by the strength and violence of temptation, which as violent and boisterous winds, and raging waves, force the Ves­sel out of the Channel, carries at upon the shore and shelves, where it is set on ground, if not split.

So Peter in the shock, the assault came so fierce, that it rowted his heart wholly: and David in hast, faid, I shal one day perish &c. Psal. 16.11. Or Els We go aside willingly, through the folly and deceiveable [Page 141]lusts of our carnal mind, which catch at every Twigg, hang upon every Hedg, rawm and reach after re set by our own devices. Will ye also go away? Joh. 6.67. Jonah hath a fetch of his own, and forlook his own mercies. Jon. 2.8. Somtimes out of sinful discou­ragements the Soul, like the Body in a fainting sit, can­not see his way, nor his Comfort, nor can it help it self by holding that which is next at hand. Like a man wil­dering in a dark night, and out of the way, he goes he knows not which way. Isa. 49.14. My God hath for­saken me. This comes thus to be helped, when God settles, and stakes down the soul, that it wil not go away, nor be carried away. O! intreat me nat to leave thee, Ruth 1. Ashur shall not save us, but with thee, the fa­therless finds mercy, Hos. 14.3. When we grow up in Christ, as they, I will wait upon him, that hides his face from the house of Jacob, and will look upward, Isa. 8.17. not inward, outward, downward, backward, when nothing from without moves us, nothing from with­in stirs us, or makes us turn back, 1 Chron. 29. 18 as they, Dan. 3.16.17. We care not to answer, our God can, and if he please, he will; however, thither they look, and thence they wil not go.

2. As there is feebleness, we abide not, so there is crossness to the power of the Spirit, which gives not way thereunto. Though God through Christ let in some in­timation to the soul, and our Savior put his hand into the hole of the door, and his fingers drop Mirrh, leaves sweet insinuations of his favor, present remembrances of himself, Cant. 4.4. yet the soul is composing it self to a secure sluggish frame, Psal. 77.3. My soul refused comfort. Ahaz will not ask a sign, Isa. 7.12. So Exod. 6.9. As Job in another case, If God will speak kind­ly, I could not beleeve it. As Asa in a desperate pang, refused to hear, and receive Direction, and Reproof from the Seen, who would have brought him again to the Lord, 2 Chron. 16. told him, the eyes of the Lord run [Page 142]to and fro through the world▪ to shew himself stronger. He lost his strength and peace all his daies.

This hindrance is removed, when this crossness of whatever kind it is, that may [...]op the passage and Influ­ence of the Spirit, is taken off; and when it's wholly re­moved, then is it fully perfected. I can do nothing a­gainst the Truth, 2 Cor. 13.8. I came without gain­saying, Acts, 10.29. Pray without Dialogueing, 1 Tim 2.8. Abraham considered no [...] Sarahs barren Womb, Rom. 4.19. Live and walk in the Spirit, Gal. 5.25. As the Soul, when a obstructions are re­moved, hath his ful intercourse in the Body: so when this opposition is removed.

3. When by feebleness we abide not, by crossness we close not, or come to be fully ingrafted into the Promise. So lastly,

When the Soul will joyn any thing with Christ, or expect any Principle, or Power, to quicken, or carry our hearts, or abilities to any Service, beside Christ, as sharing with him in any quickening vertue, further than he appoints them, goes with them, works by them. This is a desperate prejudice to the perfection of this Unity, and returning al to God in Christ. To lean upon Christ, and our own Wisdom, expect from Christ, and our own Abilities, Ordinances, Offices, &c. I am Pauls, and I am Christs, 1. Cor. 1.12. this is to joyn a stone and staff together, and so we hold neither in our hand.

This is perfected.

When we come to eye nothing but Christ, to joyn nothing with him, expect nothing but from him, no strength but from a Savior, but from Christ, who hath appointed it, sanctified, and blessed it. Paul is nothing, Apollo is nothing, Word, Ordinances nothing; but Christ in them: they work nor further than Christ is in them, prosper not further than Christ blesseth them. A Sacrament may poyson thee, as wel as nourish, if thou discernest not there, who is the Food of thy Soul. The [Page 143]Word may be a savor of Death, as wel as of Life, if Christ breath not, bless not. Therefore al the Faculties should fasten upon God in Christ, as Eagles upon their Prey, or as so many lines about the Centre, al meet him. Hopes expect Grace from God in Christ, and from no­thing else. Desires long for mercy from God in Christ, and nothing else. As they, We will remember thy Name only. Jehosaphat had al the Forces in Israel, yet staies there. There is no strength in us, our eyes are towards thee. When once it comes to that, we shall see him as be is, then we shall be like unto him, 1 John, 3.2. When we are setled so, that we stir not: yield so to al of Christ, that we oppose not; whatever this Spirit shall express, we eye him only, and expect only what we need, and joyn nothing with him, or his excellency: then are we perfect in one. Abide perfectly in him, be acted perfectly by him, perfectly advance al the excel­lencies of God, through Christ; then are we perfectly one with God the Father, in and through Christ. As the Apostle, 1 Cor. 15. When be shall deliver up his Kingdom (that is, cease the excecution of any Ordi­nance, or Dispensation in an immediate manner by any Ordinance, or any Grace by any Ordinance) then the Father shall be all in all, instead of al Ordinances, Word, Sacraments, Sabbath, Prayers, Covenants, Pro­mises; but the Father wil infinitly let out of himself to our Savior, and immediately through our Savior, unto the Souls of his.

USE, 1. Comfort.

This is Ground of strong Support to perswade our hearts: no Temptations from without, no corruptions from within, no oppositions, be they never so fel and fierce, never so mighty, and violent, shal ever be able to hinder our Communion with God in Christ, and so our everlasting happiness. Were the Root of it, either in [Page 144]the means we use, or abilities we have, or in the power of the Creatures on Earth, or Angels in Heaven, or Grace in our hearts: It might indeed, either be wonder­fully hindered, or else utterly lost, as in Adam.

But it issues from a Fountain, which is beyond, not only Heaven, but that which is above Angels there, yea, the highest Stars, even the first Origination of the eter­nal, blessed In-being of the Father in the Son: which is without al Creatures, nothing can further it; above al, nothing can hinder it; before al, nothing can reach it. This seems to be Pauls ground, Rom. 8. and last, Nor things present, nor things to come, Principalities, Powers, Life, Death, Angels, &c. Why good Angels do not hinder. It's from the Love of God in Christ, therefore it's beyond the reach of al created Power.

2. Exhortation.

See the lowest corner of the Foundation stone of our Eternal happiness, and look to it, and stay there. Look at al means, as from Christ. The Law as kept in the Ark: The Truth as in Jesus, dispensed as in the Head of the Second Covenant, Eph. 4.

2. Look at Christ, as from the Father, John, 14.24. The words ye hear, are not mine, but the Fathers that sent me. This sending, and speaking by Christ, is be­cause the Son is in the Father, and the Father in the Son.

Verse 23.

That the World may know that thou hast sent me, and loved them, as thou lovest me.

HERE we have the last thing in the Verse laid out, to wit, The several ENDS which the Lord aimed at, in the Order, and Degrees, whereby this Ʋnity of Relation was brought in. Christ was in them, the Father in Christ; and this In-being of the Father in the Son, brings in this perfection of the Unity of the Faithful.

These last words set forth a Double [...]nd of this Dispensation.

  • 1. That the World may know that thou hast sent me.
  • 2. That thou lovest them, as thou lovest me.

To the first of these we have spoken formerly, in verse 21. where it was first mentioned, and so first came into consideration to be opened and handled; and ther­fore we shal say no more of that at this time, but refer your thoughts unto our former Expressions.

That which now offers it self to a further, and more ful enquiry, is thus expressed: That thou hast loved them, that is, That the World may know that thou hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.

We have Three Particulars here to open; and then the meaning of the Text, and the mind of the Lord wil appear.

  • The Father hath loved the Son.
  • He loveth the Faithful, as he loves the Son, the Lord Jesus.
  • When the Faithful attain their full perfecti­on of Ʋnity, the World shall know that he lo­ved them, as he loved the Lord Christ.

To the First of these.

We must know, That when we attribute these Perfe­ctions, either to the God-head, or Persons, they are not attended in propriety of Speech, as though the God­head, or Persons, were subject to such passions and affec­tions, as are in man signified by such words. But they are spoken by way of resemblance and similitude, that there be some actions affirmed of the God-head, and Persons, and put forth by them, which men out of the Disposition of Love, do put forth.

Sometimes again, Love, as it is affirmed to proceed from God [...] Christ, discovers not only, nor so much, the act of God properly, but the Fruits and Effects, which issue, and proceed from Gods Love, and are ex­pressed upon our Savior Christ, and blessings which flow from, and are procured by his own Merits.

Which may be truly called the cause of the things, or the fruits of Gods Love, not properly the cause of any Act, as it issues from the Lord. John, 10.17. The Fa­ther loveth me, because I lay down my life for my Sheep. Nothing without God is the cause of any act of Gods Wil, or Understanding; but the laying down of his life may be the cause of that Glory, which the Father had intended, and he according to the Fathers intention, had purchased, Phil. 2. He humbled himself to the Death, the death of the Cross; wherefore God hath exalted him, and hath given him a Name, &c.

Or else the manifestation of the approbation, or satis­faction [Page 147]which the Father took in his Death.

The first of these I conceive to be principally intended in the place, and so we shal speak unto it.

The Lord Jesus is the Object of the Fathers Love: His heart was wholly after him, his thoughts wholly set upon him, not once looked off him, taken up wholly with him from al Eternity. The infinite, and Eternal Favorite of an Infinite, and Eternal Father, upon whom he spent, as I may speak with Revereace, his whol aff­ection, John, 3.35. The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand.

We shal,

  • 1. Open it.
  • 2. Give in the Reason.
  • 3. Make the Use.

The Lord Christ is said, and that truly, to be the Object of this Fathers Love, two waies.


  • As the Second Person, God with the Father.
  • As God-Man, taking our Nature up­on him.

1. The first respect: If we look at the Lord Jesus as the Second Person, his Eternal Love then issues from his Eternal Generation. So himself speaks, and confesses, verse 24. Thou hast loved me before the Foundation of the World, and so termed the only begotten, and wel­beloved Son. And it shews it self as the special operation of the most p [...]e, and perfect Love doth, in three Par­ticulars:

1. Love affects Union, and where it can it attains it with most strength. So it is here, after an unconceiva­ble manner, the Father is intimately endeared unto his Son, that his Eye is never off him, himself never from him. Therefore it is in Prov. 8.22. the Father is said to possess him in the beginning of his way. He was all the proper possession the Father had, and holds from E­ternity: and this is the meaning of that other Phrase, verse 30. I was with him, as one brought up with him. [Page 148]The Phrase is marvelous sweet and pregnant, as one nur­sed up with him in his Bosom, and Bowels, from everla­sting. God the Father is compared to a Guardian of the Lord Jesus, whom he keeps under his wing. I am not a­lone, the Father is ever with me; yea, the Father and I am one.

2. It's the Nature of Love, to take ful content, and complacence in the thing beloved: and so the Father doth in his Son, after an unspeakable manner, takes an infinite fulness of soul-pleasing satisfaction; so that be­fore al Creatures were, he lacketh nothing, and he spent his whol thoughts in gazing upon the through concur­rence of al unspeakable excellencies in the Lord Jesus, Prov. 8.30. I was dayly his delight. It was his con­stant, and continued Exercise, the ful imployment of his blessed Majesty, to fil himself with the fellowship, and familiarity of his Son.

When the Atheist enquires what God did, before the World, if the World was not Eternal? Answ. He was sporting himself with the unconceivable complacency, and ravishing contents of his wel-beloved Son, the Lord of Glory. So that nothing was wanting, while he enjoy­ed him; nothing could be added, while he possesseth him.

3. There is a Love of Benevolence. It's the Nature of Love to study the good of the thing beloved. This the Father doth also after an unconceivable manner. The study, and bent of his infinite Understanding, is now to plot for the Honor, and to lift up the Glory of his Son far beyond al praises. So that more than the Fa­ther gave, could not be enjoyed, no more could be ad­ded, no more could be desired by our Savior, when he would make his request in that behalf. Hither the Lord Christ repairs, and here he takes up his stand, as though no more could be conceived, or communicated, John, 17.5. And now, O Father, glorifie me with thine own self, with the glory I had with thee before the [Page 149]World was: q.d. If he was put to his choyce, to his desire, or God the Father to his free giving, he could wish no other, nor no more glory, but that which he had with him from Eternity.

2. So the Father loves the Son, as Man, also in al the former particulars and in all the several properties of them, so far as a finite creature is, or can be made capable thereof, not only in regard of the compass of its own ability, but as far, as underpropped and supported by an almighty power. I shal point at the former special­ties in so many words.

1. In regard of union; here in the surpassing excellency of the love of the Father appeared, that he brought it into so neer a fellowship with himself, that it doth not only exceed al the power of the creature, to work such a union, but even the reach of al reason of men and An­gels to comprehend it. For not only the Essence of the Deity takes up its dwelling and abode there bodily, but its taken into the very subsistence of the second person, and melts into the personality of the second person: and hence it is, the Grace of union is indeed accounted a Grace of the greatest excellency, above al other, and in truth it is so, not only in regard of the priviledg whereby our Human Nature is advanced one degree above the excel­lency of the creatures of highest rank: for of that the place is meant, and that the Apostle intends, Hebr. 2.8 That al things are put in subjection to our Human Na­ture in Christ. He took not the seed of Angels, but of Abraham. When he bringeth his first born into the world, worship him, al the Angels, even as God-man but I say, not only in regard of the height or the privi­ledg, this Grace of union is to be attended: But in regard of the unmatchable efficacy and Peerlessness of power, that exceeds the bounds of my created ability: In that the subsistance it hath by this, is no other, but the subsistence of the second person. In that the Angels [Page 150]must sit in a lower forme and aloof off, in the porch as it were, and administer there, by their attendance, when our Human Nature is taken into the Chamber of presence, the personal union with the Lord, and so consequently, as thereby Co-partner of divine honor and worship together with the second person. None of which can be said of any creature, or any created Grace in the hearts of the Saints.

2. The Father takes ful satisfaction in the man Christ Jesus. He proclaimes it openly. Math. 3. last This is my wel beloved Son, in whom I am wel pleased. He alone it is, in whom the Father smells a sweet savor of rest therefore when he cashieres al other sacrifices, as such in whom there was no sufficiency, our Savior no sooner offers himself, but therein the Father quiets himself in fulness of content. Hebr. 10.5, 6. Burnt offerings, and sacrifices thou wouldest not, then said I, Loe I come, in the Volum of thy Book it is written of me, I should do thy will.

3. Improves the Soveraignty of his power and good pleasure to promote the Son, and advance the glory of the man Christ Jesus. Joh. 3.35. The Father loveth the Son and hath given all things into his hand. There­fore he sends the comforter in his name. Joh. 14.26. Nay the Father makes this the maine scope of al his dispensations by Christ, puts the Administration of all things into his hand. That al may come to him, depend upon him, and give al glory to him, in what they do receive, and for what they seek, and hence the Father carries al the Trade this way. As great Princes when they wil advance their Favourites, there come no peti­tions but by their hands; no kindnesses or gifts, but by their meanes, That al may eye and honor, receive al from them, and by their means, and returne to them. Joh. 5.22. 25. The Father judgeth no man, but hath commited all judgment to the Son, that all might honor the Son, as they honor the Father.


Here are al the grounds upon which Love grows, and that in more than an ordinary Nature and measure, and these are three; all which are found in the Lord.

  • 1. Neerness.
  • 2. Likeness.
  • 3. Suitableness of worth.

1. Neerness.

And that we see to be a forceable argument in Nature to draw men to inlargedness of affections. Love begins next home. A Countrey Man we affect, rather than a Forreiner; one of the same Town before a Countrey Man; a Kinsman before a Towns Man: a Child before him; the wife before others; a mans self before al, wife and Children and Kinsman and Towns Man. So it is here.

The Lord Jesus is most Neer to God the Father, and therefore most beloved. Its said our Savior came from the Bosom of the Father. Joh. 1.18.

2. Likeness is the Load-stone of Love.

The In-let unto the hearts and affections of others, and cals out and requires a disposition in another, like unto it self. And this is here in greatest eminency. Look we at the constitution of the person of our Savior, Hebr. 1.3. Called, the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person. Nothing is more like, than a lively Image, resembling the Father, in the most perfect and infinite manner, none like him. Look at imitation, likeness in behavior, carriage, and conversation, is that which inlargeth affection also: and this also is here to be seen. Joh. 5.19. The Son doth nothing, but what [Page 152]he seeth the Father do. For whatsoever the Father doth, these also doth the Son likewise.

3. There is a suitableness of worth.

The best of our affection, and deserve our dearest love to be bestowed upon it. So it is here. The Lord Christ, he being in the form of God, counted it no rob­bery to be equal with God the Father. And so there is an answerableness and proportion only here to be found between the affection and the thing here affected. Whereas al the creatures, taking in al their excellencies together, are too mean and under for the Lord once to bestow his Love, yea his look upon (further than his own image is in them, or resembled by them, in them) So the Prophet gives in the Jnventory of al their worth; All the Nations of the Earth are less than the Dust of the balance, yea vanity, nothing, less than nothing. Christ himself it is, whose name is as an Oyntment pour­ed out, and perfumes the world; which if once taken away, they would remain nothing disireable.

USE, 2. Reprehension.

This shews the vilenes of the hearts, and the hainous­ness of the sins of those wretched persons, who under­value the Lord Jesus in their hearts and apprehensions and look at him, as one unworthy their affection and love. How far are these men from the disposition of the eternal God, the Holy one of Israel? He sets his heart upon the Lord Jesus, as the only Object of his Love: These men loath him. He delights in him, They despise him. How divelish are these distempers? how contrary to the God of glory? even as far as dark­ness from light, and Hell from Heaven.

How can such ever expect to see the face of God in Christ in another world, whose hearts are so contrary [Page 153]to him in this? and yet every place is pestered with these Rebels. Some of the posterity of those, of whom the prophet speaks, Zach. 11.8. Their Souls loathed me, and my Soul loathed them, saith the Lord of Hosts. God wil pay thee in thine own coin, and recompence thine own waies upon thy head and heart. Nay how canst thou not, but expect the Lord should justly loath thee, who art a very Dunghil of distempers, and whose works are worthy to be hated especially in that thou ha [...]est him.

The name and memory of Judas is accursed and exe­crable upon Earth. He is gibb [...]ed up with this remem­brance, Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him.

The carriage of the Jews is detestable to the eares of all that have heard of the Name of Christianity, who pre­ferred Barabbas, before the Lord Jesus. Away with him, not him but Barabbas. And yet there be multi­tudes in the world, who deal worse with the Lord Jesus in their daily course. Who sel Christ, not for Silver, but for their sins, and the lusts of their own hearts, and that they may give satisfaction thereunto. And proclaime it in their practises, Away with the commands of Christ, not they, but mine own carnal desires shall carry me. Away with the promises and comforts of Christ, not they, but the way wardness of mine own wil and distem­pered perversness of mine own heart, that only pleaseth me, Oh, but it wil be replied, True it is, our infirmities may be many, and temptations strong, our failings great, by reason of the Body of death: but should we be haters and despisers of the Lord Jesus, its pity we should live. Should we hate him, that came to save us? we Hope we be far from that hellish frame.

I desire ye were far from that, and that's the worst I wish you. Put it then to trial, according to the truth of the Gospel: yea ye wil say with al our hearts. The Text saies thus. He that despiseth you, despiseth me. Luk. 10.16. The Text sa [...]es thus, The Citizens [Page 154]hated him, and sent after him and sa [...]d, This man shal not rule over us. Luk. 19.14. Examine now thine own heart, and observe thy carriage. Is it not the word, which Christ proclaimes? the messenger he sends? the work of his Grace, which he requires? the rule and government which he would [...]et up in thy heart, And life that thou settest thy self against▪ that w [...]l not have his law Lord it over thee? his Grace take place in thee? know assuredly, thou art a hater of Christ, and of God the Father. Nay what if it prove true, that thou hatest Christ more, than any thing in the world beside? will not thou conclude thy condition damnable? and thy self hateful?

Why? thou hatest the ordinances of Christ, because of their power and purity. Thou hatest the servants of Christ, because of their Graces, that is, because Christ is there. If the Theif hate the Lanthorne for the light sake, he hates the light much more.

Hie thee out of this hellish condition and hate and loath thine own soul, that ever thou hast loathed Jesus Christ. Lest that doom, that is denounced, be made good, He that loves not Jesus Christ, let him be accursed. Anathema Maranatha. 1 Cor. 16.22. Curse him, all ye Angels in Heaven, Devils in Hell, Churches on Earth, until Christ come to judgment and he there have that Doom, Depart &c.

USE, 2. Trial.

We may here prove the truth of our love, If it be like Gods love, its then of the right stamp.

1. The we desire Ʋnion, breathing after our com­ing to him. Phil. 1. I long to be dissolved and to be with Christ which is far better. I have been too long with the world, too long with the distempers of mine own heart. Its far better to be with Christ. Breath after his coming. 2 Tim. last and 8. Love his appea­ring, [Page 155]sollace our selves, we shal ever be with him.

2. Then we shal take ful contentment in him. I have enough, Christ is mine, as Joseph. Live upon him, be satisfied with him. Phil. 1.21. Christ is in life and death advantage. In al gets Christ, and gaines in al his wants, hath advantages in al necessities and losses.

3. Then we study how to honor him: lay our crowns at his Feet; live to him, die to him. Phil. 1.20. That Christ may be glorified in our mortal Bodies, whe­ther by life or death. Be willing he should pluck his praise out of us. The Father wil own this love, Christ accept it, The spirit bear witness to it. This is from the Father, through Christ by the spirit. God-like love.

USE 3. Exhort.

Doth God love Christ? go thy waies, and do likewife, its a mercy that he wil accept of our love, and suffer us to love him.

1. None more worthy, than our Savior. One of then thousand, altogether pleasantnesses. Wouldest thou love thy peace? love Christ that procures it, lovest thou thy Soul and salvation? love Christ that purchas­ed it.

2. None deserves our love more; whom wil ye love, if ye love not Jusus? ye wil love the world, and it wil deceive you. Ye wil love you friends, and they wil forsake you. Ye wil love your own conceits, and those wil delude and ruin you. No: Christ hath bought our love dearly, and us also. He loved us more than Hea­ven. He emptied himself of his glory. He loved us more than his own life, loved us more, than the sense and feeling of his Fathers love, which is better than life it self. Therefore he that hath bought our love and us so dearly, we should dearly love him Let our minds [Page 156]love him, who hath inlightened them; our hearts, who hath comforted them: our consciences, because they have been pacified and refreshed by him.

3. We cannot lay out our love better, to better ad­vantage and improvement for our own spiritual wellfare. Joh. 14.21. If any man wil love me he shal be loved of my Father and my Father and I will come to him, and Sup with him, and manifest our selves to him. Is there no drooping and distressed Spirit? when thou breathest after the assurance of Gods love, Oh, but one smile of his countenance, when thou sittest in darkness, and in a disconsolate condition; what wouldest thou now give, to gain evidence of Gods favor, that he should make known himself unto thy Soul, and say unto thee, I am thy Salvation? Oh, thou sayest, part with any thing, do any thing. Why, Love jesus Christ, lay out thy affection upon him, and its certain thou shal attain what thou desirest. Prov. 4. Love Wisdom, and she will keep thee, exalt her, and she will preserve thee: she will bring thee to honor, if thou wil embrace her.

Thus we have finished the first point of the three ob­served from the last end of our Savior's prayer, Viz. The Father loved the Lord Jesus.

We are now to inquire of the second proposition, that is plainly expressed and taken for granted, as the main thing that is intended here by our Savior, The point then is in the express words of the Text; Viz.

God the Father loveth the Faithful, as he loveth Jesus Christ.

He loves the Saints, as he doth our Savior, he loveth his adopted Sons, as he doth his natural Son, the mem­bers as the Head.

I confess judicious Calvin [...]asts another Constructi­on upon the word; and therefore interprets the Particle, which carries a similitude with it, causally, thus; That thou lovest them, because thou lovest me. But since this Translation which we read, carries the proper signi­fication of the Word with it; and since that which he intends, is not denied, but included in it; I therefore chuse rather to follow the Native, and Natural signifi­cation of the word, when there is no constraining Argu­ment to the contrary, nor any inconvenience doth ac­crew thereby, to the Context and Scope of the place. Only attend this, that ye may not mistake the mind of our Savior, nor the meaning: It is but AS, for the quality, and likeness of this Love; not so much, as that it should be equal for the quantity, and greatness of that Love, which was extended to our Savior, and to his Saints and Children: For that were to derogate from the Wisdom and Goodness of the Father, from the Ho­nor, and Excellency of our Savior, and to lift up both the Persons and Priviledges of the Faithful, more than were meet and due.

It sufficeth, nay, it's unmatchable, and incomparable Mercy, and unconceivable goodness of the Lord, that poor sinful Dust and Ashes may so far be advanced, that they may be like to Christ, which they deserve not, though to be equal to him, is unreasonable to expect, as impossible to attain it.

The like Phrase we have again repeated in the last verse of this Chapter, with which our Savior ends his Prayer, leaving that, as the last farewel, in which such spiritual god things, and those glorious Priviledges, that ever were promised, or could be expected or received, were summed up, even the marrow of al those loving kindnesses the Lord lets out unto his People; the tast and rellish whereof, if it were kept upon the Soul, it would keep a satisfing, and ravishing content upon the heart of a Christian in al Conditions; yea, carries him [Page 158]beyond al the fulness of Comforts, that al created Nature can afford, whether in Earth, or Heaven, being som­thing above Heaven it self, and al the beauties of all created Excellencies, which the place can afford.

We shal open Two things:

  • 1. Wherein the Love of the Father to the Saints, shews it self.
  • 2. That it is like to that, wherewith he loved his Son.

1. To discern wherein this Love appears, we shal follow it in these Particulars, by which Love is in a special man­ner made known, as before,

Love of

  • Ʋnion,
  • Compla­cence,
  • Benevo­lence.


  • Desires Union to the thing
  • Rests contented with it,
  • Desires the good of the thing


1. God loves his Saints with a Love of Ʋnion: that's thus conceived: God the Father brings the Faithful into a neerer Ʋnion with himself, and Christ, than any Crea­ture by any ability, or excellency received by Crea­tion, could ever be capable of, or could ever attain unto.

And this wil appear, if we compare the surpassing ex­cellency of this Union, and the intimate neerness, which every Beleever hath with God in the Covenant of Grace, with that which Adam could attain unto by the Cove­nant of Works. Had Adam stood, and attained the ut­most perfection, it was possible for him to be made par­taker of, by the improvement of the Spiritual Stock of Grace bestowed upon him: The utmost of al his happi­ness had been confined within this compass. 1. A man [Page 159]by the Principle of Grate, was f [...] to close with God, and perform the Covenant made betwixt God and him.

But since the Fall of our first Parents, and departure from God, it was impossible for any Creature, or any created Grace, to bring back the soul to God; therefore the God-head of Christ dwelling in the Nature of Man assumed bodily, must bring the Nature of Man again un­to God. Man, out of the mutability of his Grace, de­parted from God; but neither man nor Grace, but the infinite Power of the God-head, must bring man to God again, and keep him with him. So that the Second Person in the Glorious Trinity, taking our Nature up­on him, did not only purchase, by the power of the Dei­ty all for us; but by the same power, enables us to re­ceive the Work of his Spirit, by which he carries us unto himself, and the Father. So that it is not any created Principle of Grace, or gracious habit, which either fits us for Christ, or carries us to him, as we have heard. But the same Spirit by the same power that raised Christ from the dead, works it. Eph. 1.20. No man comes, unless the Father draw. John, 6.44. He that hath heard, and learned of the Father comes, verse 45. He it is that begets us again by the Word of Truth. Jam. 1.18.

2. Adams closing with God in the performance of this Covenant, was in this; That he did imitate the Lord in the manner of his Work, for that was the excellency of his Image, to work as God had wrought.

To do, not what God requited only, but to wil Gods Wil, that is, to meet with him, and to concur with him in the Act of his Will: As the Clock doth with the Sun; at the point of such an hour, when the Sun goes twelve, it strikes twelve; or as ye have heard, somtimes two Clocks meet, and melt into the same stroak at an in­stant.

To wil as he, love as he, delight as he. Make my heart one with thee, Psal. 86.11. Acts, 13.22. Col. 4.12.

But every Sa [...] of God, that by his Spirit, is carried to him, he is made one with Christ in an unspeakable manner.

1. The Soul is pitched immediately upon the Deity, and so the Father, Son, and Holy. Ghost; and in the most intimate Union that can be imagined. Not as the Branches to the Vine, John, 15.1. nor as the Members to the Head, Eph. 1.22. but yet neerer, they are bone of his bone, and fl [...]sh of his flesh, and that is neerer than to be Members to a Head, Eph. 5. and 30.32. yea, are one Spirit [...]ith him, 1 Cor. 6.17. and this is beyond the compass of al that sufficiency, and excellen­cy God impla [...]ted in Adam. The Spirit of the Lord Jesus, that ca [...]ried the Soul to the Father and Christ, clo­seth the [...]oul with the Spirit of the Father and Christ. By the Spirit from the Father and Christ, we close with the Spirit in Christ, and the Father. If the Spirit which raised Christ from the dead, be in you, Rom. 8.11. As by the same Spirit of the Lord, 2 Cor. 3.18. Adam had Supernatural Grace, but this [...]s more than Super­natural; for that was not able to incorporate the Soul into Christ. The Lord by his Eternal Spirit plucks him from his sin, carries him to himself, and pu [...]s him under the power of the Spirit of the Second Adam. As the first Adam, by natural Generation, turns the Soul from God to Sin, puts it under the right, and rule of the perverted mutability, or disobedience and curse of the first Adam.

Adam traded out of his own Stock, and from those Principles of Grace he had received, and the Lord had implanted in his Nature, coming into the World, gifted and qualified from the bounty, goodness, and faith­fulness of the Lord: And therefore it's said, He had wherein to rejoyce, had he obeyed and performed the Covenant, and wrought for his Life.

But beleevers are not in their own hands, nor at their own finding, but kept in the hand of Christ, and live [Page 161]meerly and immediately upon dependance: have all their Store and Stock in the hand of the Lord Jesus, are brought, and taken into fellowship with the Father, and his Son, and thence fetch al that dayly quickening, and efficacious influence of the Favor and presence of the Lord, to carry them out to al the Duties they do. Thus the Apostle, Gal. 2.20. I live not, but Christ lives in me, and that I do now live. The Fountain of Life, is not firstly in himself. Adam might have said, I live by the Power and Principle of Grace received, and in which I was created, and thereby I have pleased God, and ac­cording to the Covenant of Works, may challenge life and happiness.

But Paul in the Person of al beleeving sinners, pro­fesseth, that, I live not; Christ hath brought me to him­self, made me one with himself, that he might be al in al to me, and work al by me. We are dead, and our Life is hid with Christ in God. Christ is the Keeper of our Life; the Father the Author of it.

So that it is not any Power in Man, or Principle of Grace, whereby we come firstly to close with God: but the Spiritual Union of the Faithful, is of a higher or nee­rer Nature, than that it can at the first readily be appre­hended; namely, not by the Power of Man, or Princi­ple of Grace; for al this is but a Creature, never brought the Soul to God, or kept it with him.

But the power of the Deity in Christ, by his Spirit, hath fitted me for himself, and hath carried me to him­self, made me one Spirit with himself, doth al for him­self in me, that he may receive al to himself from me, and I might wholly have such a desire, that al that we have may hold out his Excellency in al these his Dispensati­ons, and so have nothing of my self, do nothing from my self, which excludes Works wholly. Here the Soul is compassed about with al the Power of Heaven; nothing but with the power of God in Christ. Whereas Adam, who did somting of himself, from a Principle he had, [Page 162]so he might have taken somthing to himself, he had whereof to rejoyce. But God in this way and work, he doth al from himself by man, no man doth it: He re­ceives al to himself from Man, Man must take no­thing.

2. Love of complacency, that the Father takes con­tent, and solaceth himself in the enjoyment of his Faith­ful, whom he hath thus chosen out of the World; ther­fore termed, his own, Joh. 13.1. A little of our own, say we, gives to little content and rest to their owner. A mans own house he delights to lodg in, delights to converse with his own servants, or little ones. Thus the Lord is said to know the righteous, not to know the way of the Ʋngodly: Depart, I know you not. As a man is said to own such a person so educated: As the sensible Creatures can own their Mates, and their yong by the sence, they scent the Nature of such, and own somthing of themselves in them, as generated of them. So he that hath not the Spirit, is none of Christs; the Spirit which God the Father sent in Christs Name, by that his are owned. As somtime a Parent, when the Child sent into a far Country, and conceived to be lost and dead, shall yet return, there is some manner of his Speech, some Natural guise in his Carriage, some cast of his Look, whereby the Parent wil own him, and know him for his. As there was a secret owning, and yerning of Bowels in the true Mother to the Child, when it could not be deter­mined whose it was. So God the Father, who hath sent the Spirit of his Son into the hearts of his, he cannot but know, and acknowledg it, and take complacency, and contentment in it. Rom. 8.27. he is said to know the meaning of his Spirit. Hence they are called; Gods precious ones, Isai. 43.4. his Jewels, Mal. 3.17. yea, Christ professeth, he is ravished with the cast of the eye of the Spouse, Cant. 4.9. That cast of the eye of Faith, that looks only to God in Christ, takes al from him, holds out nothing else.

3. Love of Benevolence, God wisheth wel unto the Faithful, and studies to advance them and their happi­ness, with the advancing of Christ, 2 Thes. 1.12. That the Name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the Grace of God, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Quest. Why? you wil say, Is there any Name higher than the Name of Christ? or Glory due to any beyond, and after Christ? Why is it added, That Christ may be glorified, and you in him?

Answ. The meaning may thus be conceived: The Apostle having prayed in the fore-going verse, That God would count them worthy of their Calling, worthy of the Glory unto which they were called, and so fulfil al the good pleasure of his goodness, that is, fully be­stow al that Spiritual good, which is the ful purpose of his good pleasure he intended to them, and that he would bring the Work of Faith to perfection by his mighty Power. Now the end of al that glory and fulness, of al that Spiritual good he praies for, and they should par­take by vertue of his Prayer, is, That the Name of Christ, that is, Christ as he is made known in the Gos­pel, in his Offices, and Execution of the great Work of Redemption, may be made glorious in you, who from the Father, hath given al to you: you also may be glo­rified, not in your selves, but in your reference, and oneness with Christ. As God was made glorious in re­ceiving al; so also in returning al to the Father by him: And therefore it's added, According to the Grace of God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. God the Father, through Grace in Christ, gives himself, and Christ to you, so they are glorified in you receiving; you also through Grace, give up your selves to Christ, and through him to God, and return al to God in Christ.

Thus he is said to the admired in them that beleeve. So John, 3.27. The Father loves the Son, and hath gi­ven al things into his hands; and in Christ also, he hath [Page 164]given al unto them; for all things are yours, and you Christs; yea, he hath advanced them, and set them in Heavenly places with Christ, their Bodies made Spiri­tual, which Adams could not be, and therefore it's ta­ken down, to be glorified as Christ's is: Thou fool, unless the Seed fall, it riseth not again. The Saints die, not because of sin, for Christ hath freed them from the se­cond Death, and so from the first: but they die, to be like Christ, and so to be glorified with him, and then both Bodies and Souls to sit at Gods right hand in Hea­ven. It's a proper Prerogative appertaining to our Sa­vior to ascend and sit; and therefore to al from him, not from Adam.

USE, 1.

Comfort and Contentation to the Saints, in the mea­nest and lowest Condition, though the World hate, and the Wicked pursue, Saran tempt, Ungodly undermine, they al conspire to cast reproaches upon your Persons, and disgrace upon your Religion, and shame upon your Faces: when they curse, God wil bless. If they hate, and God love you, you need not fear, you should not care: In Love is no lack. If thou hast Gods Love, thou hast himself; art sure to speed when thou seekeft; sure to obtain when thou askest. So Martha for Lazarus. He whom thou lovest, is sick: he whom thou lovest, is troubled, is tempted, persecuted, discouraged. What price dost thou put upon thy Health, if sick? upon Wealth, if poor? on Life, if at the point of dying? If thou hadst these for thy succor, al was wel. Behold, Gods loving kindness, better than Life it self.

2. If God love the Saints, what are they who hate them? This is a certain evidence of a Son of the Devil, 1 John 3.11. He that hates his Brother, is a Man­slayer, &c.

Therefore they are worthy our love.

This second particular I shal further open as follows, Viz.

That the Farthers love to the Saints is like to that wherewith he loved his Son. The Father loves the faithful, as he loves Jesus Christ.

This Love carried to them, carries a lively expression, or is as a picture wherein the love of the Father to the Son is discovered in fresh colors, in an especial man­ner.

This love to the faithful, however it is impossible it could, not was it reasonable or suitable to the wisedom or goodness of the Lord it should equal the love of God to his Son, in the measure or largeness of it. Because that was infinite, unconceivable, incomprehensible, and therefore there is no equality of measure or greatness, which is beyond al measure: yet it comes up to it, as neer as may be, in the proportion and likeness thereof, in like resemblance and answerableness thereunto, its not to be found in any creature, nor in the whol creati­on beside.

As it is in the Parelion. Its like the Sun in appearance and resemblance, yet in no wise equal, either for bigness or greatness, or the vertues thereof. So it is with this love of God to the Saints, it lively resembles, not fully equals the love of the Father to the Lord Jesus. We shal further follow the several particulars.

1. The Father loves us with the like love of union, as he did Jesus Christ. The Father wholly and alone gives being to Jesus Christ, and that thus ap­pears.

The Father stands in relation to the Son, looks only towards him, his Eye is ever upon him: The Son as he receives, so he returnes his being as a Son to the Father. As Relations refer each to other only; and he [...]ce the Fa­ther is said to be in the Son, the Son in the Father. [Page 166]Verse, 22. As I told you before, my hand closing and closed are one in another, both with the hand. The Father looks to the Son in giving: The Son to the Father in returning his being. They are perfect in this, wholly give, wholly take. Thus they wholly delighted in each other, mutually glorified each other. Verse, 2. Now as God in Christ thus begets and gives being of Sonship: So Christ as Son and second person he so assumes: for had he assumed as God, all had as­sumed. But he assumes person, and to say, that any person assumes, but the Son, is Haeresie. Therefore its peculiar to the Son, and that as Son, then as begotten, and as such, he assumes, and becomes the Head of the covenant and so he begets and gives being of Adopted Sons to the faithful, sending his Spirit immutably to set their hearts for God, and to hold the bent thereof to­wards him. Thus receiving this impression from Christ, and so from God the Father through Christ.

The faithful receiving this impression, as from the Father by Christ they return it wholly and perfectly to the Father in and through Christ. Namely, The whol man, under their impression of the begetting Spirit of the second Adam, it wholly fastens upon God in Christ and so leaves it self wholly to be ac [...]ed by the influence thereof, and holds out the excellency thereof; that is, not I, but Christ; not by my power and might, but by the power of the might of Christ. Thus the Sinner is wholly beyond the covenant of works. So that the faithful hath nothing of himself, doth nothing from him­self, or for himself. As Christ the Son doth nothing of himself, but what he sees the Father do. Joh. 5.19. But God in Christ doth al for himself in man, man doth it not: receives al himself by man, man can take nothing.

This I said, was the leaving of the Soul under the influence of the spirit, not under a principle of Grace, or sanctification, for that comes after, is there, is acted and [Page 167]preserved by this. For the spirit holds nor us only, but our Graces, quickens and keeps them. But a clinging about God in Christ, that he may act al in us and by us. Therefore the Apostle joins both these Eph. 3.16. Praies that we may be strengthened by the power of the spirit in▪ the inward man. The inward man, is the man of Sanctification. Now there is a power of his spirit, that gives strengthening vertue to that. This is that for Christ to abide in us and we in him. Joh. 15.

As the Father abides in Christ, so Christ in the Fa­ther: so Christ abides in us, and we in him. Christ gives al, we receive and return all. Christ looks upon us by his spirit, we look wholly to Christ, or wholly to the influence of that spirit in Christ; hold out the power and vertue thereof, that it may leave impression of al vertues in us, preserve, perfect, quicken what it leaves. So that God is in Christ, and he as from the Father is in them. God out of his love begets his Son, gives the be­ing of Son to him. Christ out of his love begets his, gives the being of adoped ones to them. Once more,

As Christ looks only towards the Father, as his Son begotten, as he receives so he returnes. So the faithful, under the impression of the spirit of Christ, as his be­gotten and adopted ones, look towards him, leave their hearts with him, as of him, to receive al, as from him, to do al.

If Christ, as begotten of the Father, and one with him, and abiding in him, doth from the Father beget his adopted ones, and makes them one with the Father and himself: then doth the Father love the faithful with the like love of union, as his Son issues, from a like ground, is in a like manner dispensed. Only the odds, is in the measure. His love infinite, immediate, incon­ceiveable: This finite, mediate, and proportionable to the condition of a creature. And I cannot see, by al [Page 168]the little light I have, how to give a savory and seasonable interpretation of the place, but according to this ground. Joh. 10.14, 15. I know mine; his sheep, his Sons, whom he hath taken to himself; and am known of them his knowing of them makes himself to be known, and the rise from whence this comes, verse, 15. As my Father knows me and I am known of my Father.

2. God loves the faithful with a like love of compla­cency as he doth the Son: stil attend the likeness not the largness and equality of it with Christ, God is first wel pleased, and in him, with is; and such a compla­cency the Father takes in the Son, as no creature indeed could procure, and therefore no meer creature was able to receive, and without Christ none ever could have been made partaker of it. For had Adam obeyed the Law, and done that which suited the covenant and so answer­ed the rewarding justice of the Lord, yet the revenging justice of the Lord had not yet been manifested. When then sin was committed, and an infinite justice wrought, and an infinite punishment deserved it was beyond the compass of any creature to answer that wrong, pay that debt. Therefore the Lord Jesus takes our Nature, that he may suffer, and support our Nature in suffering, by the power of his Deity, that it sink not under the in­finite wrath and justice of the Father: and so this re­venging justice is answered to the very ful, and his re­warding justice please also.

And as thus with Christ, so with the faithful. Hebr. 10.14. They who have the acceptation of God in Christ made theirs, to them the Lord extends the love of complacency.

But they have the love of God in Christ made theirs. and set the evidence of this by the proportion.

A finite sin committed against an infinite being, in­finitely offends. A finite suffering infinitely satisfies; because the person was infinite that bore it. God is in­finitely wel pleased. Because from the worth of his [Page 169]person, and the vertue of his Merit, he hath laid down ful Satisfaction.

But he is infinitely pleased with the Faithful by way of imputation, because the fruit of that Merit, procee­ding from such a person, is accounted theirs.

God loves the faithful with the love of Benevo­lence, he wisheth the like good to them, procures a like good for them, as for Christ. He makes them sharers with him in Christ-like priviledges. He only hath the preheminence, and they the second place.

They are said to ascend into Heavenly places, to sit with Christ, to judg the world, yea al enemies to be put under feet. Yea when the Kingdom shal be given up by our Savior, no further dispensation in any outward means. 1 Cor. 15.28. God the Father shal be all in all, But in the infinite expressions of the riches of al glorious Grace upon the man Christ Jesus, and in and through him, upon them.

God the Father hath taken the Lord Christ into neerest union with himself. Taken unconceiveable content in him. Advanced him to infinite glory with himself. The faithful next to Christ, they are in a like manner united to God, as Jesus, In like manner accepted, as Jesus, Advanced as Jesus.

And herein lies the Crown of this glory, the Diadem of this Crown, the excellency above the happiness of Heaven, that none of al this did come from a man, by the power of any Grace, or performance of any work.

Hence we have matter of admiration in regard of the goodness and kindness of the Lord, who is al-sufficient of himself, in himself, yet should vouchsafe to look from Heaven to such poor, worthless creatures, and to extend such tender compassions unto poor wretches. Tantus, Tantum, Tantillis: but that we have spoken unto.

There be many Collections yet remaining: we shall touch only some, because we would willingly put an [Page 170]end to the verse.

1. Instruction. The sinns of the faithful are excee­ding grievous unto the Lord, above the sins of al other persons, they go neerest unto the heart of the Almighty. Not only against light, but again love, yea the greatest love that could be shewed, and therefore cause great distast. If Enemies abuse and wrong us: If Strangers, to whom we are not known, nor whom we know, deal harshly and discourteously with us in our common oc­casions of commerce: or If those of alliance and ac­quaintance, who are prophane and ungodly, if they be fals in their promises, or injust or injurious in their car­riages towards us: They deal like themselves, they do but their kind, as we say. If fals hearted persons deal falsly, If loose men shew themselves base to us, its that they do to al, yea to their own Souls: we expect no other, and therefore if we find no better measure, it doth not trouble.

If it had been an Enemy, I could have born it, saies David, but when it comes to that, It was thou, my familiar Friend, we took sweet counsel, and went up to the house of the Lord together, It was he that lift up himself against me, this is more bitter than death.

It is so with the Lord. If the Ignorant world, who knows him not, who are strangers from him and the convenant of his Grace: If the wicked and prophane, who are professed adversaries to his Grace and Kingdom, if they dishonor his name, transgress his Laws, grieve his spirit, and cast his Ordinances behind their back; It I say, the world deal so with the Lord, he looks for no other, he hates the world, he never gave his Son for the world, Christ never prayed for the world. But that his faithful, whom he hath owned, imbraced in the Bowels of his tenderest mercies, should deal fro­wardly in his covenant, this is killing unkindness. Will ye also go away? Joh. 6.67. When the Crown of those counterfeit wretches, who followed Christ for the [Page 171]Loaves, when they missed of their Dinner and sweet morsels, they departed presently, and came no more at him. Our Savior is content to see so free a riddance of them, and the place quit of their company. But turnes himself to his disciples with that melting ex­pression, wil ye also go away? q. d. That they are gone I care not, it matters not, I never knew them, nor was known of them, but wil ye also go away? that would be unsufferable.

Though Israel play the Harlot, yet let not Judah offend. And hence it is, The Lord is compelled with such unreasonable carriages to make his complaint unto the senseless creatures, as those who would give in wit­ness against such miscarriages, as professedly cross to the course of things. Hearken O Heaven, and hear O Earth, I have nourished and brought up Children and they have rebelled against me. Isa. 1.2. And upon this ground it is, the Lord makes that so sad an expression, when the Sons of God married with the Daughters of men, and were carried with the common stream, Gen. 6.6. The Text saith, It grieved God to the Heart. It went to the heart of the Almighty. Bears any thing, but the Contempt of his love and good­ness.

For it is a sin out of measure sinful. Not only that which Nature gainsaies, and reason rejects, and con­science condemnes, and Grace abhorres to the bottom­less pit: But it is a practise more vile than the worst of sinners wil adventure upon. Math. 5.46. If ye love them, that love you, what reward have ye? Do not the Publicans the same? Not to return love for love &c. Its that which the Publicans, the worst and most reffuse wretches in the world do loath. For the faith­ful, who have been redeemed by the precious Blood of Jesus, comforted by the spirit of Jesus, beloved of the Father, as the Lord Jesus his only begotten Son: for them to be tainted with that sin, which the Publicans, [Page 172]the worst of men wil give witness against, Oh, how▪ hamous are such miscar [...]iages, and how grievous must they needs be to the God of love.

I shal Instance in two Evils, unto which the Saints are usually too much subject, and taken aside withal, which are so professedly opposite to this enlarged compassion of the Lord.

  • 1. When the Faithful, either question this Love, when it is so sure. Or,
  • 2. Undervalue it, and little esteem of it, when it is so great, as that it exceeds the thoughts, and appre­hensions of men.

Both are marvelously distastful, and that justly, to the Father of Mercies, and in truth unsufferable, were it not that he makes us acceptable, and lovely through his wel-beloved. It could not be that he could bear with the abuse of his constant kindness, in so gross and unkind manner: and yet this is the baseness and wretchedness of our unreasonable hearts. He hath loved us with an e­verlasting Love; he never ceaseth loving, and we never cease questioning, and quarrelling with his kindness: we are ever of the jealous, and suspicious hand, that this fa­vor of the Lord, it is but for a fit, it wil one day fail, and we shal be forsaken utterly:

If Christ wil cease to be a Son, and to be this wel-be­loved of his Father, with whom he is wel pleased; then wil he cease to love thee, to accept of thee, and to be wel pleased with thee in him. The one is impossible, the other is incredible: and therefore stifle those distempe­red pangs, they are so deeply injurious to the Lord, and distastful to his Majesty, that he cannot bear them, but wil undoubtedly correct. Such a way-ward, jealous pang ye shal perceive in the Church of the Jews in the day of Discouragement, when God cals Heaven and Earth to rejoyce in the Consolation of his People; Sing O Heavens, and be joyful of Earth, break forth into singing, O Mountains; for God hath comforted [Page 173]his People, and will have mercy on his afflicted, Isa. 49.13. but they were silent in this Quaere, and sate down in sullen discouragement, verse 14. But Zion said, The Lord hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me. Can a Woman forget her sucking Child, that she should not have compassion on the fruit of her Womb? yea, they may, but yet will not I forget thee, verse 15. and therefore the Lord professeth, he takes it unkindly, Isa. 40.27. Why sayest thou, O Jacob, and speakest, O Israel? amp;c. This is the dayly talk of al dismayed, and gloomy, discouraged Spirits; it's al they speak, and have in their Meetings; Jacob saies, and Israel speaks, this is common. My way in hid from the Lord, and my Judgment is passed over of my God. Thus ye say, but what saies God? Why speakest thou? &c. q. d. I cannot abide those words. God cannot brook such groundless suspicions of his Favor, which is more sure than the Foundations of the Earth. As it is whith men, who are real and cordial in their kindness, and sincere hearted in the expression of their Love; so that they ne­ver gave the least appearance of any instability, and fee­bleness in their Promises, and Performances, as either their engagements, or others desires or necessities should require: if yet their Friends, and intimate Familiars, should out of their jealousie, either cast out such words in their presence, or give it in their expressions to others to understand, That however they have ever been free in the manifestation of their Favor, and they have ever found them faithful, that they cannot challenge them in the least; yet they fear in the issue, when it comes to a dead lift, they wil leave in the lurch: Should such ex­pressions be dayly presented before a man, and such un­kind expressions be laid in his dish; he could not but with indignation cast off such a one. Why? have I e­ver failed of my Word? ever been wanting in my labor, to answer al your desires? bestead you in al your needs? and have I this for my love and labor, that ye look at me [Page 174]as one feeble, and faithless? Take ye other, and chuse ye better Friends; I wil have no more to do with you.

And it is not possible, but our groundless, needless surmises, hard conceits that we harbor, and unloving thoughts of the Lords dealing and goodness; but it should imbitter Gods heart against a wretched Creature, and suffer him to sink in his sorrows; and however he cannot out of his Love forsake his, yet he cannot, in re­spect to the Honor of his Love and Faithfulness, but draw, and with-hold the sense of it, that the way-ward heart may the better perceive its own wretchedness, and unreasonable dealing, and learn not to doubt of Gods Love, when there is no cause. Our groundless surmises of Gods Favor causeth, yea, compels God, to darken our apprehensions, and his expressions.

The Second Evil.

The little and mean account we make of the intimati­on on Gods Love, unless it answer our conceits and hu­mors in each particular. Unless we may have what we wil, and when we wil, and as much as we wil; unless the Lord take measure of our mind, and please us in e­very Point, we cast al his kindness behind our back, and the Love of the Almighty, is in but little esteem with us. when their complaints are many and sad, that their temp­tations grow fierce, and their corruptions get head, and over-bear, their abilities smal, and their comforts less. But yet the Lord loves you notwithstanding, whatever these hindrances be, which stand in the way, and that is enough to settle and satisfie the heart.

Obj. True, I cannot say but he loves me; but if yet my Graces be so weak, and my distempers so strong, what is that?

Ans. What is that! It's of more worth than al thy Graces thou canst either attain or desire; if thou did'st know how to value things according to the worth. O! if I had such a measure of Grace, the enlargedness of heart, and abilities to perform Service in a Spiritual [Page 175]manner, as such and such, then I might be comforted, and might be perswaded the Lord loved me to purpose. As though the Child that is now yong and smal, should conceive his Father did not carry the strength of Father­ly affection towards him, because his Coat was not so long, or his Doublet, Jerken, or Apparrel was not so large as his Elder Brothers; when indeed it is not be­cause he wants Love to provide them, but he is not able to wear them. So it is here, Thou art happily but a Babe in Christ, not of time and standing in Christianity, canst not tel how to wield and exercise such eminency of Abilities for the present. Let if suffice, he is thy Father, and loves thee, as he doth the most able and excellent Christian upon Earth; Doth not that please your Pal­lates? What would ye have which would please, if ye can be pleased? I wil say more: He loves thee a [...] he doth the Lord Jesus, the Son of his Love: I hope now ye are contented. What! love me so! ye wil say: poor, silly, weak, ignorant, worthless Creature, it's a likely matter indeed. Yea, thee: Hast thou but a grain of Faith, but as a grain of Mustard-seed, even the least of al others? the poorest, weakest, filliest, unworthy Worm; be thy place, thy parts never so mean, he loves thee as his Son. Go thy way, never quarrel, question any more; never murmur, repine any longer, this is enough on Conscience, nay, it's too much, I could not have thought it, I durst not have desired it, I could not have beleeved [...]t, but that thou hast said it, that thou should'st love me, who loath my self, and know my self worthy to be abhorred. Therefore rest thy weary heart here in thy weaknesses; do not think to bring such mea­sures of Grace to deserve this Love. Nay, lay hold up­on this Love, it wil encrease the eminency of al Graces, and that in the most glorious manner in thy Soul, Eph. 3.18. Paul praies, That they might comprehend with all Saints, the length, breadth, depth, and height, &c. and know the Love of God which passeth knowledg, that [Page 176]so they may be full of all his fulness. View this Love wistly, and warm thy heart with it, and thou shalt not need to complain of barrenness, or emptiness, thou shalt be ful of Grace, not have a scant measure; thou shalt be ful of Wisdom, and Meekness, Patience, Holiness, &c. Nay, ful of the fulness, nay, of al the fulness of God­like Grace: no kind of Grace, no Excellency in any kind, that suits the Station and Condition thou dost ob­tain in the Body of Christ, but thou shalt be possessed of it.

How the knowledg of this Love brings in this fulness, it's not now a place to enquire, only the Doctrine now delivered, wil lead us by the hand to some further Light in this Work.

While we know, that is, while we constantly attend to the Dispensation of Gods Love in Christ, begetting of us, as his adopted ones, by his Spirit to himself; while we experimentally find this, and so know it, and leave our hearts under the influence thereof, as of him, to re­ceive al; as from him, to do al, we shal then be ful.

Whatever may be lacking to thy Hope, Meekness, &c. repair to this Love, and know there is no lack. I have the choicest Love of God, that either Heaven or Earth affords, and that is beyond the excellency of al Grace, and the chiefest of al Abilities, that either I do want, or can desire. He loves me, therefore let him do what he wil with me, take what he wil, Love wil supply al; give that he wil, Love is better than al. Cant. 1.1. His Love is better than Wine. As Elkanah comforted Hannah in the want of Children, Am not I better to thee, than ten Sons? 1 Sam. 1.8.

2. Instruction.

We hence infer beyond denyal, and conclude beyond al doubt, That the Love of God to his, is unchangeable. As he loves his Son, he loves his Saints, and adopted [Page 177]ones. That did never change, this will never fail. We are accepted as Christ, nothing can prejudice us in Gods Favor, or shal be able to condemn us. We are advanced as Christ, he wisheth al good, and works al good for us, as for him; sets us far above al Principalities and Powers, and what is named in this World, or the World to come. Though we know it not, understand it not, if it be named, or can be conceived, it shal never prevail against our Comforts. We are brought neer to him, and made one with him, as Christ; nothing shal be able to separate us from his Favor. Christ is in God, we in Christ; and therefore the power of darkness must pluck us out of his hand, nay, from his bosom. As the Father cannot be without the Son, nor Christ perfect without us; Satan and Sin, must take somthing of Christ his perfection, if he take away our Comforts. Hither Paul repairs, and here he Lands his Heart and Hopes in safety, Rom. 8.38. I am perswaded, that neither death, nor life, nor Angels, nor Principalities, nor things present, nor things to come (some troubles and dangers are over, but it may be, there may be more, and more sharp to come, who knows what may be? why come what can come) nor height, nor depth (if any thing in Heaven, nor any thing in Hel) nor any other Crea­ture shal be able to separate us from the Love of God in Christ. The Holy Apostles intent it, to settle this con­clusion upon the Consciences of the Romans, that the happiness of their Condition, and the certainty thereof, was beyond the reach of al the H [...]sts in Heaven and Earth, and therefore he doth not mention the Adversa­ries of the Saints, and their Salvation; but musters and marshals al the created forces within the compass of Hea­ven and Earth: Nay, not only what are, but what shal be, it there were a thousand Worlds to co [...]e, and should set themselves to shake the Comforts of the Faithful, it could not be. But what's the ground? It's hence: Because the Foundation thereof, is laid in the Love of [Page 178]God in Christ towards his. It was before al these things, therefore they come too late, they cannot hinder it: It was without any respect to them, therefore can­not weaken it: It was only, and wholly in God, and from God, and therefore cannot alter it: The Devils, and sin, may as wel separate Christ from the Father, as they pul the Love of the Father from his own heart, and so from Christ, as to separate us from it. Psal. 103.17. Psal. 89.33. My loving kindness, I will never take from him: He may take away our Credits, Comforts, Privi­ledges, Ordinances, yea, the work of our Grace, our Peace; but never take away his loving kindness, nor suffer his Faithfulness to fail: Heart, Hopes, Comforts may fail; but never this Love. Only remember, He may take away the sence of it, the sweet, and rellish of it for a turn and time. So with Christ, when he loved him: so with us, while he tenders us. So with Christ, while our sins lay upon him by imputation: so with us, while our sins lie upon us without Humiliation. So with Christ, while his Justice is satisfied: so with us, until his Righteousness comes to be imputed.


Study therefore to answer Gods Love in our manner, and according to our measure. He thought nothing too good for us, let us account nothing good enough for him. Let not the Lord have the leanest of our Love, the Female Affection, the leavings of any thing here be­low: We had the chief of his Love, let us lay out the choycest of our Affections wholly, and only upon him­self, before al Creatures we prize. They are nothing, yea, less than nothing, In comparison of the Lord, let them be so in our Affections: they are nothing, let them have nothing of our Love; but reserve that only for the Almighty, who is only worthy of it. The Wife she receives strangers into her House, to entertain, and [Page 179]lodg them; Neighbors to her Conference, to counsel them; Familiars to her Table, to welcome them: but her Husband only hath her heart and love. So let thy Prudence order these things, thy hand use them, thy skil and diligence husband them: but keep thy Love for God alone; yea, give away thy Heart from thy self, to God, to whom thou owest it, more than to thy self. Let not thy Life be dear unto thee, that thou mayest fi­nish thy course; lose that, to gain him; cast away that, to content him. As Lovers, they count it happi­ness, that they may have any thing to pleasure: glad we have it for a Friend. As the Martyr, he was sorry he had but one Life to lose for God. Yea, love him, as Christ loves him; and that's in three things.

1. He came not to do his own Will, John, 6.38. but the Will of his Father. Do thou likewise.

As our Savior in another like case, professed the Zeal of Gods House had eaten him up, eaten up al his Zeal for his own Honor, or Ends. So let the Wil of God, and Strength, and Authority of it, carry our Wils, as a mighty Stream doth the weaker Current: whatever is cross to us, let nothing be cross to him. Not my will, &c. The will of the Lord be done. As our Savior, The Son doth nothing of himself, but what he sees the Father do. John, 5.19.30. So do thou.

2. Our Savior sought not his own Honor, but the Glory of him that sent him. Let it be in our eye and aim, yea, the Scope of our Lives, to live meerly to lift up his praise, John, 8.50. To live to God, not to our selves, or the world, or any of those sinful ends.

3. Do not think thou canst do enough for him: therefore get more Grace, and Spiritual Ability, that thou mayest improve al thou gettest. To finish the work that is commended to thy trust, and put into thine hand to discharge, John, 4.34. I have them for my wel-beloved, Cant.

That the world may know thou hast loved them, as thou lovest me.

  • 1. That God loves Christ.
  • 2. That he loves belee­vers and.

That he loves them, as he loves Christ; We have spoken to al those particulars formerly: and be­cause they were al of special consideration, and carried choice, both comfort and profit with them, we [...]taied the longer upon them.

There is one point yet remaining, wherein the scope and end of our Saviors prayer is expressed, and indeed directly intended in the words.

There is a double end here mentioned by our Savior, why he so earnestly and so importunately pursues the request at the hands of his Father in so many several Cir­cumstances. That they might be one as the Father and he was one: The means how this comes to be attained, and order how dispensed: I in them, and thou in me. The perfection which was aimed at, That they might be perfect in one. Here lastly we have a double end;

I 1. Touching the honor of our Savior, that it might be manifested and magnified even in the hearts, and by the mouths of the wicked, even the worst of men, that wil they, nil they, they should be forced to see it, and forced also to confess it, that the Lord Jesus was the Messias of the world, appointed by the Father before al [Page 181]worlds, foretold by Prophets, exhibited and sent in the fulness of time by God the Father; and he that hath accomplished that great work of our redemption, and that unto the ful. That the ignorant, who never knew him, the stubborn and rebellious amongst whom he lived, and preached, yet would not receive him, yea the flinty hearted Jews, that scorned and despised the meanness of his person and the power of his dispensation; Al these at last should be constrained to acknowledg that he is the true and only Messias, set a part and sent to that work. This is the Son of God, saies the Heathen, of whom we have heard, but never laboured to know him. This is the Son of God, saies the prophane, whom we in his word have opposed, and hated in his servants. This is the Son of God, sent to save us, and we have blas­phemed his name, and flame, and crucified his person, despised his government saies the Jew. See the lively expression of this, Rev. 6.13. This, I say, wil cer­tainly come to pass, for our Savior hath prayed for it, yea pursued it with re-doubled desires, propounded in the 21. Verse, repeated in verse, 23. And he is al­waies heard in what he begged.

Hence we have two things.

1. Its lawful to begg the same thing several times, in the same prayer. We have here a pattern before us, beyond al compare, a practise beyond al exception, nay in truth, beyond al question or doubt.

He cannot do but wel, who could not erre in what he did, where he hath gone before us in his example, in things imitable, we may without either feare or hazard safely go after him. As it was said of his speaking, and its as true of his praying, he prayed as never man did. And there do not many sentences pass between, but ye have the very same petition expressed.

What our Savior did, its lawful for us upon the like [Page 182]occasion and like grounds for us to do, to put up the same petition several times, the same prayer. If we find we have greater need of that we ask, than any other, or if there be special worth in it, or that our hearts grow warmer in the work, and increase into the strength of our affection towards the thing we ask: For then there is no vain babling, or empty repetition but the expres­sions, though the same, have new strength of fresh ap­prehensions and affections put upon them, Therefore David again unto the place striks the same string of­ten, which made best melody in that musick and song of his. Oh that men would therefore praise the Lord for his goodness and declare the wonders he doth for the Children of men.

2. We ought to pray most earnestly, that the power of our Savior might be expressed, that his right appoint­ment to the work of Redemption might be acknowledg­ed by the world.

Its that which our Savior doubles his desires for the attainement of, as that wherein the great weight of the work lay, and which he counted worthy such importu­nate seeking for, at the hands of his Father. And this carriage should be a Copy and Sampler to conform our prayers unto. This is that which God the Father is so Zealous of; Hebr. 1. When he brings his first begot­ten into the world, he saies, Worship him all ye An­gels of God. And to this purpose was the eight Psalm penned, and is to be understood touching our Savior, as having the preheminence, above al creatures in Heaven and Earth, as Mediator. So the Apostle to the He­brews seems to expound it, Hebr. 2.20. Learned Junius judgeth, and therefore here the Psalmist dwels and delights to descant on this strain. Psal. 8.1. O Lord our God, how excellent is thy Name in al the world. That's most worthy our desires, upon which our Savior spent his. This only from the repetition.

The point it self we spake unto on verse, 21. So much of the first end.

The second End is this.

Our Savior prayes that they might be perfect in one, II that so the world also might know, that the Father hath loved them, as he loved him. This is for the honor and excellency of beleevers in the acknowledgment of the world. That howsoever, while they are wildering here in this vale of teares, they become the scorn of the wicked, the scrapings of men, as the Apostle hath it, and the Off-scouring of the world in the misguided ap­prehension of the wicked of the world, who know not how to judg aright of things and persons, and therefore account them Out-casts of Heaven and Earth; yet our Savior prayes, that they may proceed on to that per­fection of Oneness with the Father and himself, unto which one day they shal attain in Heaven. That the world may be constrained to see and say, that indeed they are Gods precious ones, to whom his Soul is ex­ceedingly indeared in surpassing love, even like unto that, wherewith he hath loved the Lord Jesus his only Son. This our Savior Christ prayes for, as a means to this end, and therefore it wil undoubtedly attain it.

There be two points in the worlds.

  • 1. The world shal know, that the Father hath loved the faithful, as he loved Jesus Christ.
  • 2. This shall then be known, when they come to be perfectly one with the Father and Son in Heaven.

But we shal handle them both together, because they border so neer, each upon other, and the explication of either wil add to the discovery, and so to the confirma­tion of both.

Point. Then shall the world know that the Father hath loved the Faithful as his Son, when they come to be perfected in Oneness with the Father and the Son.

These two the Apostle joynes together also in his prayer. 2. Thess. 1.11, 12. Wherefore we pray alwaies for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling, And fulfil al the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power, That the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you: that is the first, that Christ may be acknowledged, as he that hath been sent for that work, and hath done it. Secondly, That ye might be glorified in him: according to the Grace of God, at a [...]d [...]u [...] Lord Jesus Christ.

Next under the Advancement of his own Name, the Lord provides, and the Apostle praies for the Advance­ment of his Servants. 'Matth. 13.41.43. when the Lord shal gather out of his Church, whatever doth of­fend, whatever persons that are wicked, and whatever things, even a [...]o [...]gst the godly, that offend: Then shal the righteous s [...]ine as the Sun, in the Kingdom of my Father. They have been here unde [...] hatches, coo­ped, up in Du [...]g [...]ns, there they shal be in their King­dom, and that in the Kingdom of their Father. Here they lie among the ports, al din [...]ed [...]e [...]co [...]ed with the shame and disgrace, that hath been cast upon them, as the scum of the world, and the scorn of Heaven and Earth. This is Zion whom to Man regarded. There they shal shine, and that as the Sun, which every man wil see, because he cannot look of [...] the light of it, and wil be dazelled with the beauty of it. This shal be do [...]e to the man, whom God hath now, and wil then honor. They shal sit wich the Lord Jesus in his throne, [Page 185]and shal judg the twelve Tribes of Israel. The wicked when they shal see the Saints next unto Christ, and judging with Christ, they cannot but acknowledg, and that to the grief of Their hearts, that they be highly honored, and dearly beloved like unto the Lord Jesus.

That is the truth of the point, before we can come to the Reason, there must be two Questions answer­ed which wil give in the light of explication to the several branches of the Doctrine.

Quest. 1. How wicked men, the world, can be truly said, to know the love of God to beleevers, which is so special a secret, that it is not (many times) made known to Gods own, for many years together: nay the Apostle professeth, it exceedeth knowledg. Eph. 3.19. At least, this new name writ upon the White-stone no man knows but he that hath it. And therefore this love seems to be beyond the reach of the world, too far off, for their blind Eyes to see: yea the Apostle professeth, they have not received the Spirit of the world, but the Spirit of God, that they might know the things, that are graciously given them of God: and is one, if not the cheifest of al those good things given, the surpassing indearedness of the Fa­thers affection to his. How then can the world, who have no other, but the Spirit of the world be able to know this?

Answ. I answer three things, wherein the meaning of the places wil be opened, and the weight of the Ob­jection removed and taken away.

1. To discern and judg of the spiritualness of the work of any saving Grace, is wholly beyond the ability and reach of any natural man: much more unable is he to know Gods love therein, or to view the beauty and [Page 185]surpassing sweetness thereof. These waies of Wisedom are too high for a Fool. He must have Gods Eye-salve, that must be able to see the things of Gods Grace in him­self, much more in another. All sanctifying works are peculiar to the Saints.

There is sanctifying work in the understanding, to act it, and inable it to close with its object, as well, as any sanctifying work upon any of the other faculties: and this is proper to the Saints.

And the Scripture is plain and peremptory, the world knows not the Father nor Christ: Nor yet any that are begotten of Christ: and so neither the love of the Father conveyed by Christ unto any. 1 Joh. 3.2. Therefore the world knows us not, because it knows not him. And upon this ground it is, they are called, Gods hidden ones.

Though the world and wicked men cannot discern, nor rightly understand what this love is, nor the spiritual Nature of it, which is done by a spiritual light; yet they may know, and then they shal-know, that God the Father hath and doth affect them with a most peculiar love, both glorious for the manner, and in­comparable for the measure of it, even next unto the Lord Jesus: and this shal be discovered by the fruits of this love, and the amazing expressions of the riches of his mercy, which then shal appeare upon the faithful, in their deliverance from so great evils which is wrought for them, the crowning of them, with that Excessive, Exceeding weight of glory, with which they shal stand possessed, and that unto the astonishment of the ungod­ly, and the torment of their Souls with envy and indig­nation thereat.

No man knows the affection of a Father, or Husband, but those that are in that estate and condition: because its a secret of Nature, which is only to be seen in the impression of the work: yet that a Father loves his Son, above al other his dearest friends, and neerest acquain­tance: [Page 187]That the Husband tenders his Spouse with an indeared affection above al mortal creatures: This ap­peares by the expressions of his respect, that all he hath, is at her command, al he can do, is wholly improved for her content and comfort, she lies in his Bosom, and his heart trusts, in her, which forceth al to confess, that the stream of his affection, like a mighty current, runs with ful Tide and strength; Though what that affection is, he doth not know: yet this he knows, The choicest affection is there.

So it was with Haman, when the Question was by the King made, What shal be done to the Man, whom the King will Honor? He expressed his opinion, and was forced to put it also in practise. He then knew who was most deep and dear in the Kings Royal affection. Mal. 3.20. When God makes up his Jewels, then men shal discern betwixt him that serveth the Lord, and him that serveth him not, how ever happily before they were al shuffled up together, and then there was no dif­ferencing betwixt the most precious Jewel, and the most reffuse Pebble.

3. This knowledg in the ful extent of it, as it is here to be attended, and that which is appropriated to that time in peculiar, it may be expressed in two particulars, if we would lay out the limits and bounds thereof.

1. They shal then stand perswaded of the love of God to beleevers, by a setled and wel grounded conviction, that cannot be removed: I say, setled conviction; be­cause for a time or turn, for a present push and unde [...] pressure, they may freely yield, and confess, and pro­fess as much. So many profane wretches, in the horro [...] of their hearts, they have then honored, then advance [...] the faithful as the most happy. Oh Blessed such, that ever they were Born, Balaam-like, Let my Soul die th [...] Death of the righteous, and my latter end be like his But this is but a pang. Now only setled conviction Seizeth upon the Souls of the worldly men,

2. It is a grounded Acknowledgment from a sensible Experience of the contrary. Condition, which they have observed in their own Souls, and therefore now it's past gainsaying, when their own sense gives in con­stant Evidence without alteration; of which, more af­terward.

If Conviction be setled, so as it cannot be removed; their Experience undeniable, which brings in Evidence that cannot be gain-sayed; then it's true, The World may be said to know that there is such a Love of God to the Saints.

Quest. 2. Why doth not the World come to know this in this Life?

Answ. Upon a double Ground, or for a two-fold Reason.

1. Because the Life Spiritual of the Saints, is hid and concealed while they wilder up and down in this Vale of Tears, clouded partly with sorrows and miseries which attend them, as a constant Companion in a Christian Course; partly collied and bemited with corruptions of their hearts and lives: so that neither the beauty of Gods Grace, nor the tender expressions of Gods Love, doth in any peculiar manner appear in them; and go no further than the Judgment of Sense, they are the most forlorn, despicable Persons upon the face of the Earth. And truly, were their hopes only in this life, they were of all men most miserable; and further than this Life, men do not look, nor can in truth see, wanting Faiths Prospective, which is the Evidence of things not seen, that they so judg, nay, conclude it, as beyond controversie.

And this somtime stumbled holy Asaph, Psal. 73. See also, 1 John, 3.1, 2. Our Life is hid with Christ in God: when Christ who is our Life shall appear, then shall we also appear with him in Glory.

Because their Understandings are wholly perver­ted, and their hearts also so corrupt, that they are not able to judg of the Love of the Lord, or the evidencing expressions thereof. The god of this World hath so blinded their eyes, that the beauty of Gods Grace, and so the beams and heat of Gods Love cannot come home to their Consciences, to convince them thereof: And such is the corrupt distempered frame of their hearts, that they savor only the things of the Flesh; and not to have things suit their sensual Appetite, or to contrive Con­tentments to their own carnal Affections, they count it the greatest curse and expression of Gods distast, and dis­pleasure that may be. The carnal heart savors the things of the Flesh, nothing seems sweet, unless it suits his cor­ruption. So that,

If the Life of a Beleever, and so the Evidences of Gods Love be hid, and cannot be discerned:

The hearts and minds of the World, be so perverted and surfeted with the sweetness of their own lusts, that they cannot judg of the fruits of Gods Love, though pre­sented before them:

Then it is no marvel that they do not know it, nor acknowledg it as dispensed to the Saints.

The Point now explicated, the Reasons which give in the Proof thereof, will appear more easie, and more undeniably plain.

1. At the Day of Judgment, the World of the wic­ked, they come to have convicting Evidence, which can neither be gain-sayed, nor wil ever be removed, what is a never failing proof of Gods Love, by the sense wo­ful Experience they have of Gods direful hatred and displeasure upon their own Souls. Their hearts now find it, and feel it; their Consciences confess it; their Judgments acknowledg it, that the Plague of al Plagues, the Curse of al Curses, that wherein the venom of Gods [Page 190]Vengeance and infinite Indignation and hatred of the Lord from his Blessing and comforting presence, to be de­stroyed from the Presence of the Lord, and the Glory of his Power; the glorious and powerful expression of his saving Mercy. However formerly the soul while it was surfeting in its sinful distempers, found no greater con­tent, nor conceived any greater favor, than to have it ful of its own lusts, and not to be crossed with the Counsel of the Lord; and concluded no other Heaven, nor hap­piness like the enjoying of their hearts delight, without check of God or Conscience. Yet now he sees the sweet and surfets of those sins, become the greatest tor­ment unto him, the very quintessence of the Curse, and the substance of the Sentence of Condemnation (De­part from me ye cursed) was the Commission thereof; I thought nothing so delightful, that I might without gainsaying depart from God by sinning: therein the ex­ecution of Gods Indignation doth wholly appear, to cast me out of his presence, and to stake me down in his de­parture, never to see his face, enjoy his presence, come within the smile of his Favor any more.

Therefore those who are brought so neer to God, so accepted of him, Christ at the right hand of the Father, they at the right hand of Christ, being ever with him; what that Love is, we cannot tel, that is beyond our reach, yet it is a fruit of the greatest Love, we cannot but see and confess, our departure being the fearful fruit of Gods fierce displeasure. Thus Ecclesiasticus brings them in at the day of Judgment taking the shame to themselves, which formerly they cast upon the Saints. We Fools thought this mans life madness; but now he is advan­ced, and we cast out of Gods fight and presence for e­ver.

2. They are fully convinced, and experimentally per­swaded, that al this comes from Christ, and not from them; and from Christ as the Head of the Second Cove­nant: for from Adam it could not come, in whom they [Page 191]had a like share, as al the Sons of Men, hewed out of the same Rock, and digged out of the same Pit, had the same Nature, as they; had as good Abilities, and as great means as they: and yet notwithstanding, they found in­finitely beyond their power, nay, their own Apprehen­sions either to attain this, nay, it could not enter once into their thoughts, that they who knew not Christ, should receive him, they who opposed him, should be­come one Spiritually, and one Spirit with him, even as neer as the Members to the Head: for so they now hear the Saints acknowledg it, it was the Son that died for them, that was sent from the living Father, that they might live through him. They now see the Son of God, the Lord Jesus stands betwixt them, and al their harms, that no Devils can accuse them, that no malice can charge them; but Christ saies, I have undertaken, an­swered, satisfied, and they now come to be accepted, as he, advanced as he, set up on the Throne to judg as he, and to regin as he, through al Eternity.

They who receive al this good from the Father through Christ, as the Head of the Covenant, for them, and in their behalf; and enjoy al next unto Christ: they are loved as the Lord Jesus Christ. O! we wretches ha­ted them, when God loved them; contemned them, when God honored them: we did not know them, and therefore wo unto us; we despised them, we looked at them, as the basest of al men, when they were more than men, yea, more excellent than the Angels, the Spouse of Christ, the Members of Christ, the Beloved of the Fa­ther in Christ, yea, beloved as Christ.

USE, 1.

Hence we have matter of Patience for the Saints of God: they are the contempt of the wicked, the scorn of the World, the Object of the ignominy and reproach of ungodly men: But their Life is hid with Christ in [Page 192]God, beyond their ken, their reach and reason; and no wonder they know nor them nor Christ, The God of this World hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their hearts: no marvel, that what they cannot see, they can­not judg aright of, they know not the things of the God of Heaven, nor the work of his Grace, nor the worth of his Servants.

The Saints are Princes, but they are not in their Country, they are in strange places, and amongst strange People, who do not know them, and therefore cannot honor them: and therefore they are content to bear it for the while, to stay til they come into their own Countrey, and to the day of Coronation. Saies Paul, I pass not for mans day. This is mans day, but at that day, the day of Jesus, &c. The Lord Jesus hath here been under hatches, and the wicked have seemed to carry the day against him. This is your hour. But Christ wil have his day, and then ye will have yours. As Da­vid encouraged himself in the simplicity of his heart; I shall be had in account of those Maid Servants. So here.

USE, 2. Of Exhortation.

To perswade the Saints, that they should labor to know this Love, that so they may know their own honor and happiness. It's part of their Priviledg, their Pro­priety, a note of Christs Sheep, They know me, and are known of me. If the Lord wil have the wicked acknow­ledg thee, who only see it; how much more doth it con­cern them that have it? It they who are but Spectators, much more they who are the Possessors, and do enjoy the same: how would this support in al wants? It's but to diet and physick us, not to hurt us; it's out of Love: How would it sweeten al our Sorrows and Cor­rections, even the sharpest? It's out of love to purge us, and to fit us for himself; nay, solace our souls in Death? [Page 193]it's out of Love, it's to take down our Bodies, not to destroy them; to take out of the World, because he loves us, to take us neerer to himself. How should this settle us, and establish us in al Change? There is an end of al things, and an end of al Perfections; but whom God loves, he loves to the end. He loved our Savior, when he brought him to the Grave, that he might bring him to Glory: And so with us; when we are par­ted from al things, when we shal be separated one from another; Wife from the Husband, Child from the Fa­ther, nay, our Bodies separated from our Souls; so that they are not, or if they were, they cannot live: There is an end of al those Relations, no marrying in Heaven, no trading in Heaven; yet nothing shal be a­ble to separate us from the Love of God in Christ.

Verse 24.

Father, I will that those whom thou hast given me, be with me, where I am; that they may be­hold my Glory, which thou hast given me: for thou loved'st me before the Foundation of the World.

IN this Prayer of our Savior, two things were especially attended.

  • 1. He prayeth for himself, to verse 6.
  • 2. The for his Children, from thence to the end.

And that, Either especially for his Apostles, because the greatness of the Work now under their hand, their pressures and difficul­ties that would necessarily attend them therein, the large measure of Grace and Abilities that might suit them to so weighty and Spiritual employment, together with the need of more than an ordinary presence and assistance of the Lord, without which, they would not only be unfit­ted for a business of that worth, but wholly discouraged in it. Therefore the Lord Jesus laies in for a larger mea­sure of Spiritual supply and relief for them in the first place, and here he is marvelous importunate, to verse 20.

Or else for al the Faithful, that ever did, or for the fu­ture should beleeve in him unto the end of the World, whose case he commends from Verse 20. and the things [Page 195]he begs, are partly such which might concern their Spirit­tual good in an especial manner in this Life; and because that was the Root and Treasury of al the rest of their good things, in which they were contained, and from whence they might be received, he propounds and pur­sues with much instancy of desire, That they might be one, as the Father and Son were one. Partly such as did concern their everlasting welfare in the world to come; and this our Savior (as though he would carry them to Heaven, being presently to ascend himself) seeks to the Father for, here in the closure of his Prayer: that so nothing might be wanting, that either they did need, or could desire; but that they might be fully furnished with a sufficiency of supply, for whatsoever concerned either Grace or Glory; the present comfort of this, or the happiness of a better life.

Thus the Lord laies in Provision, and that in a plenti­ful manner:

  • 1. That which might fit them for their way and Voyage, while they are travelling towards their home.
  • 2. That which might give them sweet welcome when they came at the end of their Hopes.

Our Savior is not satisfied until he see them in the Haven, safely ar­rived in Heaven with himself, beyond al the rage of De­vils, and malice of Men, dangers of Sin, or the sorrows of the Grave, and Death.

In this 24. Verse, and Prayer of our Savior, we may attend Four Things:

  • 1. A Description of the Parties for whom Christ praies, from that Spiritual respect and relation they had to him, Those that thou hast given me, together with the cause of it; his Father gave them.
  • 2. The thing he desires, That they might be where he is, namely, That they might enjoy a likeness Condi­tion with our Savior, in regard of the glory and securi­ty of the place, and mutual society of each others pre­sence: [Page 196]or else a Parity, if we look at the kind. That they, who had been in the same Storms, might be in the same Haven, enjoy the same ease, and honorable safe­ty, share in the Society of that glorious and safe Condi­tion, when their hearts shal be ravished with the remem­brance of the wonderful Salvation and Deliverances that have been wrought for them, the surpassing excellency of Grace and Glory that hath been purchased and be­stowed upon them so unworthy: Swallowed up with the admiration of the sight and presence of our Savior, who hath suffered, ascended, sits at the right hand of the Father, and hath taken possession of al Glory, that they may be possessed of the same by him, and with him. And the also solacing himself with the sight and presence of those whom he hath so loved, so redeemed, so graced, so advanced, as himself, as though he could not have been in Heaven, unless they might come to Heaven.
  • 3. The End why he begs this: That they might be with him, that they might see the Glory of Christ which hath been given him of the Father. Not that they might have any Glory in themselves, or see, or satisfie themselves with their own glory: but that they might gaze upon the Glory of the Lord Jesus through al Worlds, and that's al they have to do in Heaven.
  • 4. We have the first Fountain whence this Glory proceeds, to wit, hence; Because the Father hath lo­ved him, before the Foundation of the World was laid.

In the General, from the Scope of the whol, observe:

It's the care of our Savior to seek and pro­vide for the welfare of his Servants, even till they come to the fulness of their per­fection.

See here in the words of the Text, the inlarged ten­derness of the heart of the Lord Jesus, he doth not con­tent himself to look to his disciples and so beleevers, while they were but in the shel, Babes in Christianity; nor satisfies himself, that he hath purchased and bestow­ed the same glorious Grace upon them, which he hath received from his Father. Nor yet doth he count it e­nough that he hath pressed the Father with such unces­sant importunity to intreate, that they might be kept in that Oneness of relation to the Father and the Son, as they are one with another, and one in another, which notwithstanding in reason might have been conceived to have been a large provision, a goodly portion and inhe­ritance, even for the choicest of Gods servants, to be so left by God the Father and the Lord Jesus with so faire an estate; that in reason they might have been able to maintain themselves wel, and not only made a shift to live Christianly, but honorably, and with much content, since the Lord had left them wherewithal, and aforehand in the world, so fully stocked and stored:

But alas, this is little in the Eye of the Lord Christ, do we but consider the endless compassions, which he extends towards such: He laies in with God the Father, for their welfare in another world, stores up for eternity in their behalf. Father I will they be, where I am. He wil not forsake them, before he see them wel arrived and in safety: therefore doth not ascend to Heaven, and leave them to the wide world, to sink, or swim, and shift for themselves. No, he hath laid in provision of [Page 198]prayer answerable to al their occasions, their changes, and necessities, in life, in death, after Death. In life, Lead them: keep them in their Graves, raise them out of their Graves, bring them to glory, and preserve them in glory for ever: He wil not have his glory, but they must see it, nay his glory wil not satisfie, unless he may see them.

If our Savior pray for this their being with him; then prayes he for and provids and also succeeds al means to attain this.

As wise Merchants victual their shipps for the longest time: our Savior victuals, even for a Voyage of eter­nity; for life, for death, for Grace, for Glory; for a Momentany passage of time in this world, and for eter­nity in another: he laies out for their present needs; but Oh how great is that goodness thou hast laid up for them that feare thee? like Joseph, provide for the se­ven years Famin, laies in provision of prayer for their everlasting supply. The Saints may find even refreshing baits by this prayer of our Savior, in their most fa­mishing distresses, feast their hearts with it. Hence it is, the Lord Christ is said, Hebr. 7.25. To be able to save them to the u [...]most that come to God by him, that is, by the vertue of his eternal intercession, of which this prayer is one part. This was signified by those two types, The Pillar of fire, and the Pillar of cloud, which went before the Israelites in their travailes. Its said, The Lord went before them in a Pillar. Exord. 13.21, 22. He took not away the Pillar of Cloud by day, and the Pillar of Fire by night, from before his people, until he brought them into the promised Land. Thus the Lord Jesus leads his people into the way everlast­ing, and withdraws not the power of his prayer, and presence, and provision of al mercies, until he bring them to himself.

So again Moses left the people in the desert and died before he came into the good Land: but Joshua brought [Page 199]them to the place of rest, of which it was said, they shal remove no more. 2. Sam.

The Law leaves a man in sin and misery, even to perish, while he is in his passage: but our Joshua brings his to rest that yet remains: for there is yet a rest re­maining for Gods people. When he went away, and withdrew his Bodily presence, yet his Bowels yerned towards his, I wil not leave you as Orphans. Joh. 14.18. He sends the comforter, his blessed spirit to lead them into al truth, To guid them in the way, while they are wildering here towards the end of their Hopes: And his care is even in Heaven, to prepare mansions of rest for their welcome and refreshing, after their weary-some travailes. Joh. 14.2. In my Fathers House are many mansions, I go to prepare a place for you and I wil come again and receive you. And before he comes, he sends post to meet his poor servants, and to inquire of their welfare. Joh. 16.22. I will see you again, and your heart shal rejoyce. This was the meaning of the vision, Gen. 18.14, 16. Jacob saw a Ladder, An­gels ascending and descending, and the Lord standing at the top: and he said, I wil bless thee, and be with thee where ever thou goest and I wil not leave thee, un­til I have performed that which I have spoken to thee of.


1. Its the charge which he hath undertaken, and unto which he stands bound, by free agreement with God the Father, that he wil see to the everlasting welfare of his servants: and therefore in faithfulness he cannot, but with al care perform it. That by no means, in no case, they do miscarry. It was the main scope of his sending by the Father, and of his coming into the world. Joh. 6.38, 39. I came not to do mine own wil but the wil of my Father that sent me, that of those which he hath [Page 200]given me, I should loose none, but raise it up at the last day. Nay for this purpose he received Power and Commission From God the Father. Joh. 17.2. Thou hast given him power over al flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many, as thou hast given him. He hath given Jesus Christ power over al enemies of the salvation of his people, that they should never be able to hinder them: over al means which might procure their good, that they should never be wanting, to help and further them in the good waies of Gods Grace: power over al wants, weaknessess, infirmities, that they should never be able to discourage their hearts in a Chri­stian course. He wil not fail of his end, they cannot fail of their comforts. 1 Cor. 15.25, 26. He must reign until he hath put al his enemies under his feet: the last enemy, that is to be destroyed is death. The Lord wil see the last enemy destroyed, and see them beyond death and danger. So that our Savior wil come last out of the field, as Conqueror, and wil not leave his people, their Souls under distresses, or their bodies in their Graves: and make them Conquerors and triumph over al their Adversaries. O Death, where is thy sting, O Grave, where is thy Victory: thanks be given to God, who hath given us the Victory through Jesus Christ.

2. The love of our Savior constraines him to lay out himself and the improvement of his power and prayers, and al he hath for their good in al conditions, until they come to be with him. Joh. 13.1. Having loved his own, he loved them to the end. In love there is no lack: if he love them to the end, he wil care for them, and their comforts unto the end. He loves and tenders in al their necessities and occasions, therefore wil un­doubtedly relieve and succour them in al; Therefore the Apostle concludes so confidently: nor life, nor death, nor Principalities, no [...] Powers, shal ever be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ.

If death cannot put an end to his love, It skils not though it put an end to our lives; his love wil quicken and raise. If he love us in prison, he wil devise means to free us. Love us in temptation, he wil provide Grace and Comfort to strengthen & sustain us in al our trials. It was an argument which they pleaded, and by which they supported their hearts for help in the death of La­zarus. Joh. 11.3. He whom thou lovest is Sick, and then he recovered him: He whom thou lovest is overwhelmed with temptations and distempers, there­fore he shal be comforted and delivered.

3. The necessities of the Saints prevail with our Sa­vior to pity, to help and to pray for them, who are not able to help themselves in the shock and stress of the violence of their assaults. He comforts the Abjects. 2 Cor. 7.6. Beares the Lambs, and little ones in his Armes. Isa. 40.11. Their enemies be many and mighty, which do pursue them with deadly hatred: Their strength and ability but weak to oppose, and their Grace but smal, and unable to maintain them, if they should live meerly upon the stock; and therefore the Lord lends them daily supply. For in a mans own strength, no man shal be strong. 1 Sam. 2.9. He speaks to them, as unto Paul. His Grace is sufficient, when there is nothing but Insufficiency in themselves. Renewed necessities, renewed mercies; his power pitcheth his Tent in weakness.

USE, 1.

CONSOLATION: To sustain, and shore up the fainting hearts of the Saints under their heaviest trials, and in the midst of the many alterations and temptations, which may attend them in their daily course, to the discomfort and discouragement of their Hearts.

Its the care of our Savior to provide for their comfort, [Page 202]when happily they cannot either care, or provide for themselves and their own relief and succour; ignorant and unskilful to foresee, we [...]k to oppose, unable to bear the miseries, and hopeless to deliver themselves from under them: behold, the Lord Jesus hath said in help be­fore-Hand for you in Heaven.

Object. Oh but thou saiest, Though the assaults be fierce and distempers strong, and discouragements sad; yet if I had a heart to seek, a spirit to send to Heaven for some relief I could conceive, there mere some ground of Hope: But when I have no help in my self, and yet no heart to seek for help elswhere, what can I expect, but utter confusion?

Answ. Christ hath laid in provision of prayers for thee, when thou canst not pray for thy self: he wil provide help, and a heart, to pray also. When Peter was Marvailously foiled by the sodain surprisal of that over-bearing assault, that carried him Head-long to the commission of so many notorious evils. Our Savior leaves a receipt with him, to which he might resort for some relief after his fal. Simon, Simon, Satan hath desired to winnow thee, but I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not. Luk. 22.31, 32. It may be thy condition, as it was Peter's case: Thy assaults may be Fierce, and thy overthrow and Failings so Foul, that thou mayst sit down confounded in thy self: thy Hope, thy Heart, and thy Prayer may fail also. Yet re­member, whither to repair for thy support. It was spoken to Peter, but it was performed for al, may be applied to al the Saints. The Lord Jesus hath prayed that thy faith sail not. His Prayer is laid in before­hand, to stay thy heart at a dead lift.

In some dangerous and infectious places, men take Antid [...]tes and Pres [...]atives, that though they should by occasion take some poison unseen or unsuspected, which [...]gh [...] annoy their Natures, and drive them into some [...]ous and troublesome sickness: yet this would [Page 203]stil and maintain the heart in the heaviest time. I Hope its not deadly, my Antidote wil out-bid the force of it, free me from the deadly danger thereof: Such is the Preservative o [...] our Saviors Prayer, which works out any Poyson, otherwise it had cost Peter his life. So our Savior directs: In the world ye shall have per [...]ecution, But be of good comfort, I have overcome the world. In temptations be comforted, though they have over-bidden thy feebleness, Christ hath overcome the vio­lence of them. Joh. 16. and last. In thy distempers be humbled, and yet comforted, Christ hath overcome the power of them, they may plague thee, they shal not prevail against thee. The snares may delude, but Christ wil deliver. Oh, but they indure stil, live, and are mighty. Answ. His mercy endures for ever, his Prayers live and wil out-bid al their might. Tis true they are through mercy somtimes abated; but they return again with more violence, and take again. But know Christ wil provide again. Joh. 16. I will see you again. And the vertue of his prayers hath eternal and everlasting Efficacy, and therefore wil for ever help thee. As thy corruption may for ever plague, while thou livest, but the power of Christs Prayer wil out-live thy life, and the life of thy sins, and set Heaven Gates open before thee.

USE, 2. Instruction.

The worst condition of a beleever, is better than the best Estate of the wicked: The poverty of the Saints bet­ter than their wealth: The discouragement of the Saints better than al their contentments and comfort. Because in al, the Lord Jesus hath provided for their good, and out of al wil work their welfare and happiness. A little that the righteous hath, is better than a great deal of the wicked, for God blesseth his store. Though the Diet be but mean, yet the dressing is much, and the sweetness [Page 204]of the sauce makes it more pleasant, and cordial, than better provision that wants both. Ps. 37.16, 17. Gods love, that sweetens al: and the vertue of our Sa­viors Prayer, that perfumes and gives a pleasing rellish to al. It turnes the Water of the Saints into wine, nay make their Water better than Wine. For thy Love is better than Wine.

But there is a Canker, that Breeds in the best comforts of the wicked; their table is their snare, their pro [...]perity their ruin, and a curse accompanies the choicest of their most comfortable blessings. From hence it is, that holy Asaph beares up his heart in that heavy temptati­on, when he was so much taken aside by the prosperity of the wicked, that his Foot had wel-nigh slipt, he thus recovers himself, Thou wil lead me by thy counsel, and after bring me to Glory. Ps. 73.24. Thou leavest them in their Errors, they have an easie way, but a wrong way, that wil lead them to confusion. Ps. 17.14, 15.

USE, 3. Of Direction.

Let the practise of our Savior be our DIRECTI­ON How to steer our Course, to Sail by his compass: Be good Husbands and wisely careful to lay in provision for every condition. The wise man sends the Sluggard to the Pismire: Go to the Pismire thou Sluggard, learn her waies and be wise, she prepares in summer, before the Winter; when there wil neither be means nor meat to be got, nor season to get it. Be we so careful. In peace provide for war, in prosperity for want, in health for Sickness. This was Jobs care, When his Paths were Buttered and his Breasts ran ful of Milk: he then Feared and expected. Lay in reversion of Prayers for Children, as in that Fundamental Prayer of Solomon, he provides for every occasion. If thy people shal be carried Captive, and in the Enemies Land, if Pesti­lence [Page 205]&c. Then, what Prayer is made by thy people &c. So lay thou in reversion of prayers for such times and streits.

Thus we have done with the general scope of the verse, we come now to the particulars observed therein. And,

1. To the Parties described, [...] Those whom thou hast given me. Observe from hence this point. Viz,

All beleevers are given unto Christ by God the Father.Doct.

Our Savior presents the persons of the Saints, both here, and often, yea constantly, and almost continually in the foregoing part of this Chapter, to God the Father, under this notion and consideration, rather than any other, As GIVEN by the Father, As that which hath the most perswading and prevailing power with the Father, readily to hear, and willingly to grant, any Prayer or petition that should be made in their behalfs, and freely and aboundantly to give and bless al means, that shal be desired for their good and welfare: For which end and purpose, God gave them to Christ, he also prayes for them, and both Father and Son stand ingaged to provide for their everlasting happiness.

As though our Savior should have said: It is not the condition of thine enemies, I now present before thee, nor the cause of Strangers, (righteous Father) that I de­sire to recommend to thy Majesty, but it is for Thine own, whom thou hast Given, and over whose Good thou hast Given me Charge. For them and for their good it is, that I pray, and therefore I cannot but speed for both.

For the Explication of the Doctrine, two Questions are to be considered; and the meaning of that Phrase opened, and then the Truth wil be evident.

  • 1. What this giving is?
  • 2. How God the Father is said to give?

To the First, I answer three Things: All which being distinctly attended, wil open the Nature of this Work, and make it easie to the Understanding of the mea­nest.

1. Giving the Soul to Christ, is not properly the Act of Election: though several Interpreters of savory Judgment, do so think and speak: but I suppose their meaning must be further extended, or else their words wil not be able to abide an exact examination by the Rule of Truth. But it is a Consequent which follows it; an effect which certainly, and infallibly flows there­from; and of this, the expressions of Scripture, wil give in evident proof.


It's usually joyned with Election, and made distinct therefrom. John, 17.6. Thine they were, and thou ga­vest them me. Verse 9. I pray not for the World, but for them, that thou hast given me, for they are thine. Where the former of these Phrases and Expressions, im­ply Election, the other a dis [...]inct and differing thing therefrom. They are God the Fathers by Election; made Christs by Gift and Donation: Yea, the one is used by out Savior, as a Reason and Ground of the other; I have prayed for those, that thou hast given me; for they are thine; properly so termed. Beside, the very Nature of the Phrase, and the manner of the Speech, wil not easily bear such a converting, being harsh to the ear, and hardly suitable to sense, to be elected to Christ, as [Page 207]we say, to be given to Christ; which if giving were ele­cting properly, might truly be so expressed; which nei­ther the Nature of the thing, nor the Construction of the words, wil easily admit.

2. This Giving, is not the Act of Beleeving, by which the Soul is carried by the Power of God [...]nto Christ; but the Scrip [...]ure is pregnant, and the Dispute undeniable, John, 6.37. All that the Father hath gi­ven me, come unto me: and those that come unto me, I will in no wise cast away. Coming, we know, is Belee­ving, John, 6.35. I am the Bread of Eternal Life, he that cometh to me, shall never hunger. If it be deman­ded; what is that Coming? He answers in the words immediately following; He that beleeveth in me, shall never thirst. Coming then being Beleeving, our Savi­or making this Giving of God the Father to go before it, without which, the Soul wil never come, or beleeve, it cannot be it.

3. This Giving, is the Work of the Father upon the Soul, in Vocation, which goes before the Infusion of Faith, makes way for the working of Faith by Christ, and receiving it from him; and which being there, the soul never fails to beleeve and come: for that is the force of our Saviors Dispute, John, 6.36. where he gives the reason, why many did not beleeve. Ye also have seen me, and bel [...]eve not; What might be the cause thereof? since their Abilities were as great, and their Excellencies as many, which they might have improved to that pur­pose, before many other. Our Savior sets down the immediate root and rise of this distinction, and separati­on: Those that the Father hath given me, those will come, shall beleeve [...] where that is not, coming wil not be. The manner of this Dispensation, we shal speak to in the next Question; and that is,

How in God the Father said to give us to Christ, Quest. 2. as intimating somthing peculiar herein, and appro­priated to himself?

The Lord Christ is to be considered, as God-Man, as­suming our Nature,Answ. when by voluntary Dispensation he put himself into the place o [...] Mediator, becomes our Sure­ty, & undertakes the great Work of our Redemption; and so, as himself, peaks, is less than the Father, John, 14.28. The Father is greater than I. And therfore in the trans­acting of this great Work, by mutual agreement, may truly be said to have us given to him, not to give us to himself. And this the Father doth on this manner:

1. The Father being the Party, properly, and directly offended, lets in his heavy displeasure into the heart of the sinner, and forceth him to feel the bitterness of his sin, in that unsufferable, and un [...]voidable manner, that takes off, and eats out al the former seeming sweetness the soul hath found therein: and by the almighty, and unresistable power of his blessed Spirit, divorceth him from the embracings of those base Lusts, and plucks him by his almighty hand, from under the power of those pre­vailing distempers, that have taken place, that so the soul may be for another; which, while it was wedded to its former Corruptions, and under the Soveraignty, and Authority thereof, it was utterly impossible, as be­ing against the Principles of Reason, and the Nature of Grace, and the Covenant of Truth, which the Lord hath left in his Word.

This ye shal find most plain in the very express words of our Savior, when he discovers this Work, John, 17.6. I have manifested thy Name to the Men, which thou ga­vest me out of the World. He gets them out of the hand of the World, from the lust of the eyes, and lusts of the Flesh, and the Pride of Life, 1 John, 2.16. For that is al, which is in the World; and from al these, whether [Page 209]the vanity of the Creature, with which our Eye and Sen­ces are taken from without; or the sensual filth, and dunghil steams of noysom distempers, which arise of our own Concupiscence; or whether it be Pride, and over­weening Self-confidence, which ariseth, and issues out of al. this is al that is in the World, and from al these, the Father gains the Souls of those men, he gives unto his Son.

For they had given away themselves unto these Lusts of the World, and that must be repealed, before this could be tendred afresh.

And here again by the way, ye may observe, That this Giving, cannot be the Act of Electing: for that is an eminent Act, and remains in Gods Breast and Bo­som, and goes not out: This is called a Transient Act, is an Act which passeth upon the Creature.

That is without respect and consideration of Mans be­ing, much less the being of Sin, as ye have fully heard.

But this supposeth a man in the World, that is, under the power of the Vanity thereof, if he must be given out of the World.

2. God the Father doth actually deliver up the Soul into the hand of Jesus, commends it to his keeping, to rule him in the Kingdom of Grace, while here he remains in this World, and to bring him to Glory hereafter. He gives the Soul, and our Savior takes it, and undertakes for it, as his Charge, according to the terms of the Cove­nant, and Agreement made between the Father and him.

The Expression of Calvin, is pat and pleasant. God the Father causeth the Soul to pass into the Care and Custody of the Lord Jesus, leaves him in the power and possession of his Son Jesus, as the Second Adam, the Head of the Covenant of Grace, that he may see him re­deemed.

As the First Adam neglected the Covenant, and de­stroyed himself, and his Posterity: There was a Parly and Consultation held between the Father and the Lord [Page 210]Jesus, touching the Salvation of his Elect, and the A­greement fully transacted and passed. But now it comes to be put into Execution, and he gives them into the hand of Christ: The Soul comes into Christs presence, and Christ comes to speech with it.

Behold the party I wil have redeemed, and the Lord takes him as his Charge, and provides for him, both to bring him to himself, and so to Life and Salvation, which he hath purchased, and possesseth, and can communicate. The Soul as yet consents not, nor hath the powerful im­pression of Gods Grace come home to the heart: God gives the Soul, the Soul doth not yet give up it self, but God giving to Christ, as his charge put, and passing un­der his care; He undertakes to get the good wil of the Soul, and to bring it to himself, and through himself to Life and Glory.

3. When the Father hath thus delivered the Soul un­to the care of Christ; he then gives Christ to the Soul, reveals the Lord Jesus as the Surety and Savior, that hath covenanted with the Father, and hath purchased al from the Father for him; so that there is nothing that can stand betwixt Mercy and him.

This Christ and Mercy, so provided, and intended for his good, is now rendered and given to him. Behold thy Savior, who is the Head of the Covenant of Grace, who hath purchased, and procured, by the Fathers Ap­pointment, al good for thee, and can, and wil, communi­cate al good to thee: This leaves a mighty impression of the sweet of the good upon the Soul.

Thus God tendring Christ, and through him mercy, as he that hath covenanted with the Father, and under­taken for the soul, commended to his care by the Fa­ther. This tender of a Christ, and of Mercy in him, makes the Soul take it: this offering of Christ, as one, to whom he was before given to save, works the heart to receive Christ, and that is beleeving, which is thus wrought (as ye see) by the giving of the Soul to Christ.

Because Christ gave himself, and Mercy to the Soul, therefore the Soul comes to him. But because the Soul was given to Christ, and his care, he gave himself, and mercy to it. Therefore the Soul was given to Christ; therefore it comes, and beleeves.

If God the Father had not given the Soul to Christ, he ad never taken care of him, never given himself to them; they never received him, nor good from him.

Hence Beleeving is said to be Receiving; and recei­ving we know, as a Co-relative, is the cause of giving.


1. Because they are the Fathers own; and there­fore he hath most right and reason to dispose of them, and to give them away, as he sees sit, when it wil be most seasonable to procure the good and comfort therof. This is the ground our Savior goes upon, Thine they were, and thou gavest &c. Each man hath most to do with that, which is his proper right. Now the Father had set his heart upon them, before the World, and appointed them to be Vessels of Mercy, in his everlasting purpose: and therefore it's but equal, that he should order al things for the accomplishment of the Counsel of his own Will, and the performance of his Soveraign good Pleasure without controul, John, 6. I came not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me: and this is the will of him that sent me, That I should lose none that he hath given me. It's sit that God should do his own Will, whose Will is the absolute First-Cause of all things that are done.

2. As Gods own Right, so their own proper, and peculiar good, is hereby especially, if not only, procu­red. For had not God the Father, given them to his Son, he would not, nay, I may truly say, he never could have given Grace, and Mercy, or Good to them, in a righ­teous way, preserving the Right and Honor of his Ju­stice, [Page 212]and so the Glory of himself. For had not Christ taken the care and charge of us, the Justice of God would never have suffered him to have shewed us Mercy: we should never have been fitted, nor enabled to receive Mercy. For we having wronged his Justice, and provoked his Anger, by reason of our Transgressions, his Justice would have stood offended, and his Dis­pleasure incensed against us, by reason thereof. Nay, he did give a Commission to our sins, under the hand of Divine Justice, to take vengeance of the Soul; and this stopped the influence of Gods Mercy, or the least inti­mation of God from coming to our Souls; and being now under the guilt and power of our sins, though mer­cy had been tendred, we were utterly disenabled to re­ceive it, having no power thereunto.

But when Jesus Christ takes the charge of us, and un­dertakes in our behalf, he takes off al the impediments on Gods part, answers his Justice, and appeaseth his Wrath, that so they wil not stand betwixt us and our Comfort; but an open passage is made for the good pleasure of the Lord, to be fully manifested, and the in­timation and communication of Mercy tendred and offe­red to us, 2 Tim. 1.9. Who hath called us according to the purpose of his Grace, which was given us in Christ before the world was, that is, was then purposed, and in time exhibited. It could not be given to us, as in our selves considered: but when God gave us to Christ, and Christ to us, he gave us himself, and Grace, and mer­cy in him, and by him: that as the Head of the Cove­nant of Grace, being in our room, and undertaking for our Salvation.

The Father made him the Treasurer and Dispenser of al Grace and Mercy, to give life to them, that he had gi­ven to his hand, betrusted as his Charge, and bequeathed unto his care.

As he takes away al Impediments on Gods part, that his [Page 213]wrath and justice wil not hinder: So al on our parts, they cannot hinder: that though our corruptions would oppose, and our selves, being dead, could not receive it; He is a quickning spirit. 1 Cor. 15.45. Job, 36.10. He commands us to turn, and gives by his command. He makes the dead hear his voice, and makes us live who hear. Col. 1.13. He translates us from Darkness into the Kingdom of his dear Son.

USE, 1. Information.

It serves to settle our jugdment in many truths of the Lords, which at this day are much questioned, and many cavils raised by carnal minds and hearts to oppose and darken; we may hence have undeniable evidence to convince and quiet our own minds and hearts, as tou­ching Gods counsel therein.

The Papists, Pelagians, Arminians, al the Popish Schools dispute; whether God gives sufficient Grace and power to al men, to be saved if they wil?

Whether Gods election issues out of his meer good wil and pleasure, or from the prevision and foresight of faith and good works? and they determine affermatively, unto both these.

Which delusions notwithstanding are fully dashed by the former Doctrins. If God give sufficient help to al indifferently to be saved, to Judas as to Peter: Then he gives al into the hand, and commends al unto the care of Christ. For this is a principal Grace and favor, and an especial means of life, without which it cannot be attained.

But this God doth not bestow upon al. For al that God gives to Christ, certainly come to him by Faith: for al such he prayes, they shal be with him in glory. But al do not come to him by beleeving, al shal not be with him in Heaven.

Again, If coming unto Christ be an effect of giving, [Page 214]unto Christ an effect of Election. I pray for those thou hast given me, becouse they are thine: Thine they were, and thou gavest them me. Then it follows necessarily▪ That because Elected, therefore they have these as fruits thereof, not because they have these, therefore they are Elected.

The Parties for whom this Prayer was made and the description of them we have opened and finished.

The second Particular. The thing desired.

We are now to inquire after that which is here reque­sted in their behalf: and it is, That they might be where Christ is.

The Lord Jesus is, as I may so say, fond of their pre­sence, and therefore he is not willing to be in Heaven, unless they may be with him: as though Heaven were no Heaven, unless the Saints should take up their abode there. The House would be forlorn, and Heaven de­solate, unless the Inhabitants were there, these poor servants of the Lord, to fil up their Rooms and man­sions,

In this Second Particular there be Three Points espe­cially observeable.

One which is the Foundation of the rest, is taken, as a thing granted, upon which ground the Prayer is made, To Wit, The presence of Christ and the glory of which Christ stands possessed; These are things sup­posed, only the Question ariseth, why Christ so earnestly desires their injoyment of his presence, since now they had it, conversing with him, and he with them.

What presence therefore doth our Savior intend? or what is the glory here meant? Ans. True, our Savior was now present with them, and they with him, and therefore that is not the thing he principally aimes at: but he looks at his own being in Heaven, which was immediately to succeed his death; and he speaks of it, as a thing past, because of the infallible certainty thereof. As it is the usual course of Scripture, in the like case, so to express things. Rev. 18.2. Babylon is fallen, its fallen. It was to be undoubtedly, and therefore he speaks of it, as done certainly.

It was impossible that any thing should hinder our Sa­vior from coming thither, and therefore he takes it as a thing done, That he is, as though he were certainly there already: q. d. I am now going to my death, and grave, and thence to rise again, and go to Heaven, and I am desirous they should be there also, I am not willing to be without them. And by consequence, the glory he mentions is the glory of Heaven. For should we look at his Present condition, it was the time of his Humilia­tion and the very season of his greatest abasement was growing on, when he was to undertake his sufferings and to empty himself of his glory. Philip. 2.7. He is said to make himself of no reputation, and took upon him the forme of a servant, humbled himself unto the death of the Cross; and as his present state was the time of his abasement: So his ASCENSION is called the time of his Glory, because that great discovery of his glory was reserved for that season, and was then made manifest. Joh. 17.4. Father glorifie me with thy self, with the glory I had with thee, before the world was.

The words then being clear, the points are plain and those are Three.

  • 1. Christ is in Heaven, and hath unconceiveable [Page 216]glory given him of the Father.
  • 2. Its the earnest desire of the Lord Jesus, that his faithful ones should be in Heaven with him.
  • 3. The end of our being there is; to behold the glory given to Christ; look at the glory, and look at it, as given of the Father, whose everlasting good will and love is thereby expressed, and by that com­municated to his.
Its the happiness of Heaven to gaze upon the glory of Christ.

The first Point hath two parts in it.

We shal take them asunder, and so handle the several branches; otherwise we shal not so readily and famili­arly and distinctly open the particulars therein, some whereof desire and deserve special consideration and explication, Namely, What is that glory that Christ hath, and how it is said to be given him?

To begin the with the first Branch.

The Lord Jesus is gone to Heaven.

This was Shadowed out by his Transfiguration. Math. 17.2, 3. When Moses and Elias came down to see this preparative of his departure, to give tidings of it. Of the passage of our Savior the Apostles give in undeniable evidence, as such, wherein they could not be deceived, nor deceive. For it was not done, when they were heedlesly looking about them and so might easily be mistaken: but while they looked stedfastly, wishly, considerately, towards Heaven, even while they were gazing upon our Savior, he was taken up in­to Heaven. Act. 1.9, 10. And Stephen in the time of his greatest extremity, being the first Martir, who laid down his Blood for his sake, he saw him there ar­rived. Act. 7.55. Being ful of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into Heaven, and saw the glory of [Page 217]God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. And Chap. 3.21. Whom the Heavens shal contain, until the restitution of al things. And its made the up­shot of the Mistery of godliness. 1 Tim. 3. and last. Christ manifested in the flesh, preached in the world, received into glory. And from hence the Saints expect him, and they shal see him, descending with a mighty shout, with the voice of the Arch-angel, and with the [...] of God. 1 Thess. 4.6. The Lord shal come in most glorious and magnificent state, & these shal be dreadful notice given of his approach: yea every Eye shal see him: yea such who have pierced him with their sins.

Reas. 1. Taken from the excellency of his Divine Nature, which must be suited with a place and throne answerable to the dignity and soveraignty thereof. For however it pleased the Lord, out of his infinite love, to step out of the Chair of Estate, to visite this inferior world, to be included in the Womb of a Virgin, and to take his progress into these lowermost parts of the Earth: yet it carried no proportion, in point of honor, that he should take up his abode there, but to re [...]rn a­gain to the Royal Palace of state. Heaven is my throne, and the Earth is my footstool. In reason he may stoop to his footstool and tread upon it, but to stay there, and to make it the chief place and habitation, where his heavenly majesty should dwel, It suited not the excel­lency of his Divine Nature. This is that which the Apostle intimates to be the ground of the difference be­tween the advancment of the posterity of the second Adam above the first. The Faithful shal be raised and Translated from Earth to Heaven: whereas, ad Adam stood in Paradise, he and his posterity had injoyed an earthly paradise, that is, God there only; and the reason is rendred from the point in hand. 2 Cor. 15.45. The first man was a living Soul; able to beget one like himself, by a natural course of generation. But the second Adam was a quickning Spirit, able to [Page 218]give life to the dead, and so raise up them from the Grave, and to make them spiritual Bodies, which was beyond the power of Adam.

Again, The first man is of the Earth, earthy: His covenant, and his countenance such. But the second is the Lord from Heaven. And thence he infers, As is the heavenly, such are they that are heavenly: Especi­ally in the main point of resurrection, whereof now he disputes. And as in resurrection, so in ascension,

That which first belongs to the Lord Jesus, as the Head of the covenant, that belongs to al through him and only by him.

But our ascending and sitting is the prerogative Royal of our Savior, therefore it never did, nor should have belonged to any but through and by him.

Its true our Savior consists of two Natures, Divine and Human; but because the humanity is the meaner and more inferiour, therefore that must follow the Deity, and be where it is: And we also, whose Nature our Savior took, and whose places and persons he sust­ained, we must follow our Nature, and our Nature the God Head, that hath his proper place in Heaven: And therefore the Human Nature with that, and all those, who are the members of that Head, must be there where the Head is.

And hence our Savior professeth for the comfort of his disciples, That he went before to prepare a place for them. Joh. 14.4. In my Fathers House there be many mansions, I go to prepare a place for them. He as God-man, the Head of the Covenant, goes to Heaven: and the wil bring al his to Heaven: by vertue thereof, he makes way for them thither, Room and entertainment there. Heaven is the Lords: the place of the God-Head: our Nature assumed follows that, and we our Nature.

Reas. 2. Taken from the Quality of his Office and the Manner of the dispensation and execution thereof. [Page 219]He is sent as an Ambassador from the Father, to trans­act the work of Redemption, And to bring Jacob back again: And therefore in reason, he must return, and give an account unto God the Father, how the great Affaires of Redemption prosper under his hand. Thus he speaks usually. Joh. 13.3. Jesus Knowing, that is, considering this, That the Father had given al things into his hands, and that he came from God, and was to go to God, he forthwith addresseth himself to make way for his death, wherein the great weight of the work lay. q. d. He had received his commission from the Father, and he must give account to the Father again. And up­on this he intimates his departure. Joh. 7.33. Yet a little while am I with you, and then I go to him that sent me.

He that is sent of an errand and service, he must re­turn an account of the success, and how things prosper under his hand, and by his indeavor. Els there should be a failing in the faithful discharge of his Office, and that is the reason, the Lord Jesus is so punctual in each par­ticular. Loe here am I, and the Children that thou hast given me. And of those that thou hast given me, I have not lost one.

Its also the manner of great commanders, when they go upon great exploits and special service, though they conquer other people, possess the places and countries where they pervail; yet they return into their native and natural Country, there to be honored amongst their own, and to have their greatness Admired amongst them, as Feared amongst the Adversaries. So it was with our Savior, Eph. 4.8. &c. His death was his conquering, his resurrection his triumph; by his ascen­sion he returned into his own Countrey and his sitting at the right hand of God the Father is there crowned with the fulness of all glory, that is compatible to the condi­tion of a created Nature.

3. The efficacy of the Priviledg, as that which so [Page 220]much concernes the spiritual and eternal welfare of al the faithful, requires this of necessity to appertain to him, that must procure our good.

So our Savior reasons to quiet the hearts of his dis­ciples, because of his departure. Joh. 16.7. Ne­vertheless, I tell you the truth, it is expedient I should go away, for if I go not away, the comforter wil not come, but if I depart I will send him unto you. They could hardly beleeve it, as that which carried the face and appearance of any propability with it: that our Savior puts out of question; know it of a truth, which upon trial ye wil find to be certain. Ye would conceive at the sudden push, that there could be nothing more inconvenient and cross to the furtherance of their com­fort: But its expedient. Hence those phrases, The Spirit was not yet given, because Christ was not yet as­cended. Al the gift of the Spirit was in vertue of that work, and the further perfection of that in Christ, the further communication of al from Christ. Now our Savior is far above al principalities and powers, beyond the power, nay the opposing presence, nay the least appearance of any hinderance, that may be cast in the way by Satan, to prejudice or stop the work of our Redemption by Christ for us, or the work of Redempti­on from Christ in us.

Resurrection is the only proper cause and immediate spring of the Application of spiritual good: and there­fore had he not risen, our Faith had been in vain: for as his death purchased right unto al, so did his resur­rection make Application of it: for by that he rescued himself, and so us his members then in him from the power of darkness: that though they pursued, yea crucified Christ, could not overcome him, but he rose again. But when he ascends, he was then beyond the ascent of his enemies, yea beyond the fight, the shew, the appearance, of temptation. Far above. And so when we shal be made to ascend, we shal be like to our [Page 221]Savior, and he freed from the annoyance, the shew, or appearance of evil. Hence observe the Apostle his Connexion; He hath ascended on high, he led Captivity captive. Hell, Sin, and Death, were like a miserable captived company, that now were under the Spear, durst not hush, nor stir: He then gives Gifts to men. When Christ was crowned Emperor over al the Ene­mies, then he sends his royal Gifts, Coronation Mercies abroad.

4. This is for the great Contentment, and Advance­ment of our Savior, John, 14.28. If ye loved me, ye would rejoyce, because I said, I go to my Father, for my Father is greater than I. Any Preferment puts us into Places, which are above our own ordinary. Now there is none greater than Christ, but the Father; there­fore to go with him, and be with him, is the highest Ad­vancement.

USE 1. Of Instruction.

Therefore they who have made choyce of a Christ, have no cause to be ashamed. If he were a base Christ, ye might have some color to seek another, to make a change: but it's not so. But though he went from the Cross to the Grave, yet he went from thence to Heaven, and there is now in the highest Honor. His suffering was but his entring into Glory, nay, the addition to his Glory: therefore that should not so much discourage, as content, and cause us to bless God for our Portion.

A dead Savior was better to Joseph of Arimathea, than his life: his reproaches better than the riches of the World to Moses.

But now, when he is exalted in Heaven, attended by Angels, received into Glory, advanced to the right hand of his Father; what madness is it now, to think we could once have done better? The Crown of Thorns which our Savior wore, was to be chosen before the Credit of [Page 222]the World; what should we judg of the Crown of Glo­ry? The Poverty of Christ, is better than the Wealth of the World; the Shame of Christ, better than the Ho­nor of the World; the Contempt, and Humiliation of a Christ, better than the greatest Pomp and Advance­ment that the Earth can attain. How much more should our hearts be comforted, and satisfied now, with the Honor, Life, Happiness, and Heaven, where our Savior now is, upon whom ye have trusted, and depen­ded? How good is your Choyce? How great should be your Content?

USE, 2.

Here is invincible Assurance of the final safety, and glory of the Saints, out of all those pressures, with which they seem, not only to be assaulted, but over­whelmed almost beyond strength.

If the Head be above Water, the Body cannot be drowned, though it be under Water. Christ is in Hea­ven, and he wil never leave his Members in Hell, nor Grave. So that a man may boldly, and comfortably conclude: He wil make this sick, and weak Body, like to his glorious Body; this sinful Soul, like unto his, in al Holiness, and happiness.

As Christ of himself, thou mayest in Christ bear up thy self against the Gates of Hel. Behold, I was dead, and live for evermore, and have the Keys of Hell and Death. Rev. 1.18. Behold, I was dead in my sins, sunk in my distresses, overborn with distempers, and temptations; but I shal be for ever comforted, quicken­ed, delivered for evermore.

Nay, ye have the Promise and Engagement of our Savior. Because I live, ye shall live, John, 14.19. He is far above all Principalities and Powers, and we shal be as he is. He hath not only promised what he wil do; but he is gone on purpose to make way for us, to [Page 323]prepare a place for us, and to bring us thereunto. So he chears the hearts of his Disciples, John, 14.2, 3. He deals truly, and faithfully, and tenderly with us: If it were not so, he would have told us. He is gone on pur­pose to make room, and to see that al things be ready. And if we know not the way, nor can help our selves in it; he professeth, he will come again. When we are and stands, he wil again support us; when we are foi­led, and overborn with Temptations, he wil again deli­ver us, and receive us to himself; though cast out of Earth, and Societies of men, he wil receive us to himself, shelter us under his wings, put us into his own bosom, cast up the reckoning that the Apostle doth. Rom. 6.9, 10, 11. He dieth no more, death hath no more Domi­nion over him, &c. Reckon ye also, shal I yield to my Corruptions? No, distempers shal have no more Do­minion over me. Yea, grow in upon greater, and more glorious confidence, Rom. 5. If justified by his death, how much more shal we be saved by his life? He hath abidden the shock of Satans assaults, the source and po­wer of darkness; and when the Justice of God delivered him into their hand, and they brought him to the death of the Cross; yet he thence delivered himself, and he lives for evermore to save to the uttermost them that come to him.

USE, 3.

Therefore be willing to die, and to go to Christ. The Members long to be with the Head, the Body where the Life is, our Life is in Christ; the Wife where the Hus­band is. As Thomas said, Let us go, and die with him: much more, let us die, to raign with him. If Christ be in Heaven, why are we on Earth? Saies Paul, I desire to be dissolved, to be uncloathed, to put off these rags, that I may put on the Robes of Immortality. We have been [Page 324]too long with the world, our sins, &c. let us long to be with him.

USE, 4.

See the Hainousness of their sin, and heavy plague, which appertains to such, as rebel against this Christ now in Glory.

We have done with the first Part of the Point; we are now to enquire the meaning of the other. V [...]z.

That Christ hath unconceivable Glory, gi­ven him of the Father.

This is taken for granted, and presupposed, That they may behold the Glory which thou hast given me; therefore he hath Glory, and it's given of the Father: And of this now we are to enquire, with Modesty, and Godly fear, as being a search, and inquisition, far excee­ding the meanness of such poor An [...]s as we be, creeping here upon ou [...] Molehils, sitting here upon our dunghils, compassed about with the Mud-wals of Mortality, Misery, and Corruption: An enquiry suitable for such as are come to the highest form the souls of the blessed now as­cended, and the glorious Angels, who are before the Lord, and see his Face: They may search into the sur­passing excellency of his Glory, which is far removed out of our sight, who sit here upon the Face of the Earth, at so far a distance from thence.

It shal beseem us then to be wise unto Sobriety, not to peep into Gods Secrets: Yet because that which is writ, is writ for our learning, it's not only in our Liber­ty, but our Duty, and matter of necessity to look after such things, and to learn them with what pains and en­deavor we may. We shal then open the Sense of the Words. [Page 325]

  • 1. What is meant by Glory in the General.
  • 2. In what respect it's attributed to Christ, as God, or Man, or both.
  • 3. Wherein that peculiar Glory consists, which is thus attributed to him.
  • 4. How it's said to be given him of the Father.

I. What is meant by Glory, in the General.

Answ. It commonly, and usually implies three things in Scripture.

1. The world and excellency that is in any thing, whereby it obtains Superiority and Eminency, above o­ther of meaner quality and condition. Thus the A­postle cals the Graces given to us in Adam, Our Glory, Rom. 3.23. We have all sinned, and are deprived of the Glory of God. 2 Cor. 3.18. We are transformed from one degree of Glory, unto another; that is, of glo­rious Grace. Thus we cal a man of special, Spiritual Abilities, a glorious Christian, an eminent Christian. So in verse 22. foregoing, The Glory thou gavest me, I have given to them. So it is said, Joh. 1.14. We be­held the Glory of Christ (what that is, he ads and expli­cates) full of Grace and Truth.

2. The Expressions, or putting forth of such Abili­ties, in the most eminent, and choice Operations there­of, because in such Actions, the lustre and beauty of all such excellencies shines forth, and discovers it self.

These are termed the Glory of any thing. Thus Acts, 22.11. The shine of the Light that compassed Paul, is called, The Glory of the Light. The lustre, and ma­jesty which appeared upon Moses Face, when he came from the Mount, is called, The Glory of his Counte­nance, 2 Cor. 3.7. And that beauty of the Light of the Sun, whereby it out-bids the rest of the other Stars, is called, The Glory of the Sun, I Cor. 15.41. And when our Savior raised Lazarus from the dead, the ex­pression [Page 326]of that power, he cals, The Glory of God, John, 11.40. Said I not unto thee, if thou would'st beleeve, thou should'st see the Glory of God? that is, the glorious expression of Gods Power, and it's the best and only explication of that place, 2 Thes. 1.9. They shall be destroyed from the glory of his power; The in­finite and utmost expression of Gods power shal put forth it self in the destruction of the ungodly.

3. The acknowledgment of all these Excellencies, and of al the expressions thereof, in al the eminencies that are discovered therein. This is Glory. And thus we are said to give glory to God or Man, in such acknow­ledgments which are suitable and agreeable in some mea­sure to the worth of the things. My Son, give Glory to God.

The Second Sense is most properly intended in this place. The first is not altogether excluded, but in part only considered.

II. In what respect is Glory attributed to Christ, as God, or Man, or both?

Answ. It is given to the Person of the Son, both as God and Man, now sitting at the right hand of God the Father.

1. As God.

That Glory which no meer Creature is capable of, that must appertain to him that is more than a Creature, and in that respect.

But of this Glory, no meer Creature is capable: For it's such a glorious power which he possesseth, and which is here understood, whereby he subdues al things, even death, unto himself. Phil. 3. last.

2. This also is evident, by the Question which our Savior Christ makes, and the Argument he brings for the evidencing and evincing this Sense, that indeed he was God as wel as man, and that this Glory of his exaltati­on, [Page 327]did in that behalf; belong to him, Matth. 22.42, 43. He asked the Pharisees, What think ye of Christ the Messias, whose Son is he? They say unto him, the Son of David, that is, they looked at him, as meer man: Against which he thus reasons; How then doth David in spirit call him Lord? In Spirit, that is, by the di­ctate and direction of the Holy Ghost, as Mark, 12.36. The Lord, that is, God, said unto my Lord, that is, unto my Seed, which is my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, until I make thine Enemies thy Footstool. Now if his Son, how is he his Lord?

If Davids Seed, be Davids Lord, then Davids Seed is more than meer Man. For if he had been meer Man, the Child is inferior, and subject to the Father, is not Lord over the Father; as it's said, He was subject to his Parents. But Davids Seed, is Davids Lord, and therefore more than meer Man. As Christ is Da­vids Lord, so is he exalted: for it's so affirmed, so at­tributed to him; He said to my Lord, sit at my right hand. But as God, he is Davids Lord; therefore as God, he is exalted.

3. It's plain also by that Prayer, and Expression of our Savior, John, 17.5. Father, Glorifie me thy self, with that Glory which I had with thee, before the World was. Now that must needs be the Glory which did ap­pertain unto him, as God: For his Humane Nature was not before the World; and therefore did not, nor could not partake of any Glory. And hence it is undeniable, it must be meant of that Glory which he had before the World was, and did in the Phrase, and according to the meaning of the Scripture, lay aside, in the daies of his Humiliation, and abasement in the form of a Servant, and did now assume, when he ascended, and while now he sits at the right hand of God the Father.

That Glory which he had before the World was, must be a Glory belonging to the God-head.

But that which our Savior desires, and according to [Page 328]his desire; obtains in his Ascention and Glorification in Heaven, is that which he had before the World, and therefore it doth appertain to his God-head.

2. As this Glory belongs to him or God; so as Man.

Because this glorious Power is executed by him, as Man now ascending and sitting in Heaven: So that his Man-hood doth concur, as an Instrument working with his God-head, in the administration of it, John, 5.27. The Father judgeth no man, but hath given all power to the Son, to execute Judgment, in as much as he is the Son of Man, that is, Because the Humane Nature is as­sumed into personal Union, and therein he hath satisfied Divine Justice, and so purchased Redemption, and so al the power, as that being the only way, by which this Redemption purchased, comes to be applied to the Saints.

III. Wherein this Glory consists, which is thus attributed to the Person of our Savior?

Answ. For the right understanding of this Third Particular, wherein the pith, and life of the Point lies, This is a Rule that must be premised, and carefully car­ried along with us in our thoughts, as that which wil guide through the following Explication, namely, That Glory is here to be attended in the several Branches of it, which the Lord Christ did lay aside by voluntary Dis­pensation, out of his own free wil, and mutual Agree­ment with God the Father, Glorifie me with the Glory I had with thee.

That which was laid aside by him, that may be taken up again, and given to him, by the same Agreement.

And hence all those infinite Excellencies that are in God, the absolute might of Soveraignty over the Creature, is not properly any part of Glory, unto which he was exalted. Because this is a property of the Di­vine [Page 329]Nature, and so doth necessarily appertain to every person that hath this Nature, as necessarily as to be God. This he had of his own, and this could not be given to him, nor laid aside by him. And this was the first sig­nification of glory before mentioned. But our Savior by voluntary dispensation did lay aside the right of present-taking Dominion, and exercising Dominion, over every creature in that Nature he did assume. And hence Satan and his instruments, he in and by them, did not only assault our Savior by their outrages and temptations, but by violence of power did out-bid, and over-bear him for the present. Thus, as it were with a violent hand, he carried him into the Wilderness, and set him upon a Pinacle of the Temple: yea not only assaulted, but prevailed and had the better for the present, brought him to his death, and held him captive in the grave by the space of three daies: Our Savior by agreement with God the Father laying aside and cea [...]ing his own right of taking and exercise dominion over Devils, and men, and creatures: but giving way here­unto by agreement with God the Father for the while, that the work of our Redemption was to be accomplish­ed. Hence are these passages, This is your hour and the power of darkness. Luk. 22.53. q. d. This is the time, when ye have allowance to Tirannize, and I wil not exercise dominion over you (for he could have cros­sed and confounded with a word) but suffer my self to be foiled for the present and held captive by you. This is the power of darkness, when I lay aside the exercise and expressing of my power. Hence he returned that answer. Knowest thou not, that I could but ask my Fa­ther, and he would give me more than twelve. Legions of Angels, but how then should the Scripture be ful­filled? That agreement that was transacted between me and the Father, and now recorded in Scripture. Math. 26.53. Hence its said, Though he was in the form of God: Had the might and soveraignty of God, [Page 330]and was equal in that with the Father, had it as his own, without any robbery, or taking that which was not his right; Yet he emptied himself: Laid aside the Right ei­ther of taking or exercising that power. TOOK up­on himself The me [...]nness of the Nature and relation of a surety and servant, and under-went really the conditi­on of a servant and surety, and so submitted himself To the Death of the Cross, Because it was the lowest service he was to do in the work of our Redemption. Thus our Savior laid aside his glory.

Now the Father gives and he assumes glory to himself,

1. In that he freed him from the former Tiranny and power of darkness, and exalted him, far above al prin­cipalities and powers, and what there is named in this or another world. Beyond al Gunshot, not only beyond their power, but their assaults, yea their presence and sight.

2. In that al power and Grace belongs to him in way and right of comunication for the good of his, therefore called Head of the Church. And this follows the for­mer. Mark the Coherence; He hath exalted him, and given him to be Head [...], a Head that hath life and motion in it, To plot and contrive al for de­fence, Eph. 2.22.

For had not the second person suffered and satisfied, there had never been way nor right to communicate Grace to his, or to improve of set on going the power and pro­vidence of God for his. And therefore its his propriety to be Head, not the Father, nor the spirit. Hebr. 10.20. Joh. 5.26. To have life of himself. And verse, 21. To quicken whom he wil.

3. And immediate dispensation and execution of al power over al creatures, for the bringing home of his Elect. Thus the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed al to him: not that the Father hath not power for the execution of the work: for he that gives it hath it in a principal manner: but he hath committed [Page 331]the immediate execution thereof unto Christ. 1 Cor. 11.3. The Apostle speaks not of the Faithful, but of al. For that is the scope.

These different degrees are to be attended in regard of Subordination, and immediate dispensation:

For, Head Implies

  • Excellency and power to move all in Subordination to it.
  • Authority to rule al in subjecti­on.

So its not excellency, but power and authority, not at large, but in Subordination in the next and immediate dispensation.

1. Hence, he crosseth and confoundeth al the power and Policy of al the enemies of his Church, brings to nought the rage of Devils and Malice of Men, and each instrument that is formed. Eph. 4. Being ascended up on high, he led Captivity Captive. Nay makes them al serviceable to his Church. 1 Cor. 3.18. All is yours, and you Christs, and Christ Gods. This is the order. Christ is Gods Servant: and all your Ser­vants through Christ.

2. Hence, he restores his Elect from the power of Darkness, and translates them into the liberty of his own, by an invincible and irresistable power, breaks in upon the rebellious heart of a sinner, and brings him home unto himself. No man comes to the Father, but by me. Rev. 1.18. I was dead, and I am alive, and live for evermore, and I have the Keyes of Hell and Death. Joh. 10.16. I have other Sheep, that are not of this fold, and those I must bring. He sends and succeeds al Officers and ordinances.

3. Hence, from this immediate dispensation of al power, he sends his spirit the Comforter into the hearts of his, that he may supply al their wants, furnish them to al their works, and fit them with fulness of power and spirit to each holy performance. Its requisite I go, because If I go not, the Comforter wil not come: but if [Page 332]I go, I wil send him. The glorification of our Savior makes way for the mission of the Spirit and observe what he adds. Joh. 16.13, 14. He shall take of mine, and give it to you. And what wil he give? All things that the Father hath, and mine, therefore I said, he shal take of mine. They are al Christs, for the immediate dis­pensation, and its from the vertue of a glorified Savior, that the spirit takes them, and conveies them.

4. He gives unto his Eternal life. Joh. 17.2. Thou hast given me al power over all flesh, that I may give unto them eternal life; And this as the second person in the former sence. For as meer man, he gives not eternal life.

This is the end and Errand. And when this is done, then he professeth, He hath finished the work, he gave him to do; when he hath gathered and glorified his Saints, he hath done al he hath to do in this world.

2. His Human Nature is made glorious,

  • 1. Because it hath the ful source of al the influence of the divine operations and Graces thereunto, as much as any creature is capable of.
  • 2. It hath liberty and authority to set on work or put forth any attribute for the good of the Saints. It knows al the necessities of the Saints, and can have resort, and set on work al the sufficiency of God to yeeld supply. Math. 28.18.

USE, 1.

1. TERROUR To the wicked, the enemies to, and opposers of the Lord Jesus, and his Kingdom. See whom ye have despised, he is now advanced to al power, and therefore wil use al his power for your ruin. Upon this ground Peter shook the hearts of the Jews. Act. 2.36. He now being exalted sheds abroad &c. Let the House of Israel know assuredly that this Jesus, whom ye have crucisied, God hath raised, and made him Lord [Page 333]and Christ. Math. 25.31. When Christ-shal come at the day of Judgment &c. He shal come with power and great glory, thousands before him, and ten thou­sand thousands ministring to him; Dan. 7.10. Rev. 5.11. And they shal creep into holes and clefts of the rocks, and corners of the Dungeons, and not be able to behold the dreadful looks of Christ. Rev. 6.15▪16. But he shal fetch them thence, dragg them out of their Dungeons, draw them out of their holes. When it shal be said, they have feared, and fled, and hid themselves, bring hither, saies Christ, mine enemies, those who have been enemies to my Grace, Gospel, Children, Glory, bring them hither, and slay them before my Face. And however the Lord Jesus abates much of the dreadful expressions of his direful anger, and almighty power; Now they are terrified, and then quieted. Now in horror, and then calmed, Yet then he shal destroy them from the glory of his power; that is from the expression of al his power, and that unto the utmost, for their ruin, Christ wil do his best.

USE, 2.

DIRECTION. It leads us by the hand, the right way, whither to go, and shews us the ready means, how to derive quickning power and inlivening vertue. Do as Stephen in his greatest streight, Act. 7.56. He looked, and saw Christ standing at the right hand of God. Hebr. 7.16. He is the Author of endless life, and therefore without end, look this way. Hence do two things.

1. Know that he stands possessed of al right of com­munication and hath the immediate execution of al ef­ficacious power and dominion over al creatures. Math. 28. This is the commission he hath, and in vertue of this, he sends, quickens, succeeds and therefore look at [Page 334]him, as a glorious Savior. When he ascended, then was the time of his coronation gifts; then he gave gifts. As we say, of men honest and able, when we repaire to them for relief, its replied, Alas, they are out of com­mission. So if we look at Christs Graces in his humilia­tion, and in the daies of his suffering, they are out of commission: But when he comes to ascend, he is then in commission, and so carries al before him. Being as­cended, he sheds abroad &c. Say, there is no power in me, neither word nor ordinances, but al power and all things are given to thy ministry, therefore blessed Lord, by thy power subdue our sins, and quicken our Souls.

2. Know, that in vertue of this glory, he is bound to do al for thee, nay hath promised to dispence al unto thee. Joh. 14.19. Because I live, ye shal live also. I am with you. Eph. 2.4. He sets us in heavenly places with Christ.

USE, 3. Comfort.

Here is matter of unspeakable and unmatchable com­fort to refresh the fainting hearts of the servants of the Lord, which have an interest in this Christ, and are possessed of him, who stands possessed of al that glory, that Heaven and Earth hath, or the God of Heaven and Earth can give.

The Chymists they dream of a Catholicon and Medi­cine of that excellent confection and composition, and of that soveraign vertue and efficacy, that it wil cure any Disease, recover and remove any distemper. They conceit that which they could never yet compass, nor yet the skil and industry of al men could ever find out. That which they dreamed and desired for the Body. The Lord hath provided for the good, and spiritual refreshing of the Souls of his. Here is a Cordial, that wil undoubtedly Cure thee of al discomforts; what­ever [Page 335]thy temptation, thy condition, thy miseries are, can be, shal be: hast thou but a share in this Christ, to whom the Father hath given this glory in Heaven, It cannot but give thee content: dost thou but know the value and vertue of the receipt, and dost understand the right way to use it, and art careful to take it, for thine everlasting refreshing. See the proof of it a little in the particulars following.

Have this glory of Christ in thine Eye, and keep the savor of it in thy heart▪ Thou canst not but have glorious peace in thy conscience, joy in thy heart, and content­ment in thy course, as the particulars wil evidence.

This wil.

  • 1. Cure all thy Fears,
  • 2. Supply all thy wants,
  • 3. Rescue thee from the rage of all Enemies,
  • 4. Remove the guilt of all thy Sins.
  • 5. Strengthen all thy Graces,
  • 6. Quicken thee to all Duties,
  • 7. Give unto thee Eternal Life.

1. Cure thee of all thy Fears, Unto which we are subject all our lives by reason of our own infirmities, and the world of evils with which we are compassed about, while we live here in this world; considering what our sins deserve, men and Devils intends, what God in justice may inflict, and our constant provocations incurr, which are as it were a new mint of Plagues, which we may daily expect. We have felt somwhat in our selves, heard of more in others, and what's yet behind we know not.

But we know what Devils can do, what our sins me­rit, what God in a righteous judgment may execute: So that the fear of what may be, is worse than that we feel and find for present.

Here then is our comfort; Our Savior hath felt the worst that can be, borne al, and conquered al, drunk the dregs of the Cup, Grapled with the sting of death, [Page 336]and the strength of the law; Triumphed over extremities so that there was no possibility he should be held, or we now hurt by them. There can be no destroying evil, there need be no fear.

By the glory of Christ, we may glory over al our fears, Terrors and dismayings of spirit. It cannot be, but Christ in glory wil over work al for our good: no­thing should work any dismaying fears in our hearts.

Upon this ground our Savior put these Fears to flight, when John fel at his feet as dead, in the sense of his own vilenes & the sight of the dazelling excellencies of the Lord. Rev. 1.18. He said, Feare not, I am he that liveth, and was dead, and behold I live for ever. I live as one that hath conquered, as one that hath triumphed over al Enemies, and have the Keyes of Hell and Death. So to his Disciples. Joh. 14.27. Let not thy Heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid, not distracted, nay not stirred, Why? ye have heard, I said unto you, I go away, and wil come again. That he goes to his Father, who is greater than he, the great­est in glory; and with whom he was to possess the great­ness of al glory in greatest excellency: and therefore the hearing of this should quit them of al Fears, quiet them of al dismayings. He is now gone to take possessi­on of the greatest power that is in Heaven, that no power on Earth, Heaven or Hell, should be able to hurt. And therefore we need not Fear. He hath the greatness of power to prevent al evils that are to come; and there­fore we should Fear none, that are to come.

2. Supply all wants, That those need not disquiet, nor the heart be carried with anxiety, Care, and Solicitousness, how to provide For our Savior is not only Heir, and hath right unto al these as he had in the time of his Humiliation: But is, as an Heir come to years, entred upon his Revenews, is seated, setled upon the throne of his glory, and stands possessed of the trea­sures in Heaven and Earth, and therefore can and wil [Page 337]suit with Conveniencies, according to their needs and de­sires. It's that which God himself professeth, Psal. 2.8. Ask of me, and I shall give thee the Heathen for thine Inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the Earth for thy Possession. It's that wherein the Saints rejoyce with joy and thanksgiving, Rev. 11.15. The King­doms of the World, are become the Kingdoms of the Lord, and of his Christ, and he shall reign for ever and ever: and verse 17. We give thee thanks, &c. because thou hast taken to thee, thy great Power, and hast raign­ed, and that thou should'st give reward unto thy Ser­vants the Prophets, and to the Saints, and them that fear thy Name, great and smal, &c. verse. 18. Hap­pily the Kingdoms of another World would not content, but ye desire somthing in hand. Behold, the Kingdoms of this World, are the Lord Christs; and he hath taken to him that glorious Power that formerly he laid aside, and now he raigns. And if this wil not satis­fie, not only the Kingdoms of the World, but al things in the World, are given to Christ, John, 13.3. Yea, the Glory of al Wealth, and Pleasures, and Contents, when now he is entred into Glory. And he hath given himself to thee, and al them also. Thou canst not want so much, but he hath more than thou canst want, and therefore thou canst not want supply.

The Child cares not for Apparrel, if his Father hath Wardropes to cloath him. The Wife troubles not her self for Money to provide, if she have a Husband, whom she knows hath millions of ready Cash in his Treasury to enrich her, and relieve her at her asking. So it is with the Saints, who have Christ for their everlasting Father, and Husband.

3. This also will rescue thee from the rage of all thine Enemies, in the greatest hazards which may surprize thee, and threaten thy total ruine.

Thou sayest the subtilty in deep, the malice outragi­ous, and their power great. But behold, here the Glory [Page 338]given to Christ, even al power in Heaven and Earth is given into his hand: He over-works al their vileness, over-powers al their rage; so that they can work but what he hath determined, and wil cause to work to the good of his own. It's the promise of the Father, when he was advanced, at the right hand of his Power, Psal. 110.1, 2. Sit at my right hand, until I make thine Enemies thy Footstool. Rev. 19.7. there we have the marriage of the Lamb mentioned, and his Wise made her self ready. The Saints humbled by Faith, they put on their fine Linnen, the Righteousness of Christ. No sooner is the Bride married, but War is raised; Kings, and Captains, and mighty Men, come in­to the Field; their out-rage, hellish and fiery. But her Husband, whose name is written on his Thigh, King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, appears in her quarrel. No sooner the Combate is entered, but the Conquest is gotten, the Bride rescued, and the Enemies totally ruinated; and the Lord invites all to feast them­selves with the slaughter; To eat the Flesh of Kings, Captains, Horses, Men, free and bond, great and smal, verse 18. Yea, it's the provision Christ makes, Touch not mine anointed: Nay, the portion of the Saints which the Lord Christ hath laid out from Heaven, and the Conquest he hath made, John, 16. last, Be of good comfort, I have overcome the World. Isa. 54.17. No Weapon against thee shall prosper. This is the Heri­tage of Gods Servants.

4. This will remove the guilt of all thy Sins, which seems to over-whelm, and under which thou goest up and down, as a condemned man, and sinkest in the dayly apprehensions of Wrath, and expectation when thou shalt be arraigned, and condemned by the righteous Sen­tence of Gods revenging Justice. Satan accuseth, Con­science gives in witness against thee, and the Justice of God passeth Sentence. Look up to this Glory that Christ stands possessed of now in Heaven, and al these [Page 339]Accusations, will vanish immediately, nor wil once ap­pear to plead against a beleeving sinner. Upon this ground, Paul flings out the Gantlet against al Adversa­ries, and there is not an Action that can pass, nay, not so much as a motion made against him, that can find au­dience in Court, Rom. 8.33, 34. Who shall lay any thing to the Charge of Gods Chosen? it's God that ju­stifies, nay, it's Christ that hath died, nay, rather risen again, nay, sits at the right hand of God. Justice can­not condemn, Christ hath satisfied, and is freed, and now is at Gods right hand, and is at the better hand with Justice, triumphs there; Devils cannot cavil, they are silenced; Conscience accuse, that is answered; nay, those dayly failings which might seem to interrupt the Terms of Agreement betwixt God and the Soul, and make new Controversies: These are taken up, and in­tercepted by the Lord Jesus. Nay, the main Pith of this Glory was, as ye have read before, That the imme­diate execution of Gods whol Counsel towards the Sons of Men, is by his means, comes through his hands. And if there be any thing against his Members, his Spouse, he wil be sure to stop that proceeding. So Paul dis­putes, Rom. 5.9. If reconciled by his Death, how much more shall we be saved by his Life?

5. By this all Graces shall be strengthened, and made glorious; answerable, and in some measure proportion­able to the Glory that Christ hath possessed. The Fa­ther gives glorious Power and Grace to him, and he dis­penseth glorious Grace and Power to us. This is the ground of the Inference; The Spirit was not sent because Christ was not ascended. That the larger measure of the Spirit, in the more spiritual and efficacious operati­ons thereof, was not yet given, because he was not yet in the Throne of Glory, and invested with the fulness of that power, which then he should re-assume, and chal­lenge to himself. And this Peter renders to be the rea­son of those extraordinary Gifts that were given, and [Page 340]admirable Works that were done by the Apostles. When al the People wondered, and stood amazed, to hear each man speak in his own language, the magnificent things of God; the holy Apostle Peter carries them hi­ther, as to the first root and rise of al those miraculous Dispensations, Acts, 2.34, 36. That Christ whom ye have crucified, God hath raised, and made him both Lord and Christ; and having received the Promise of the Spirit, having as man received the Spirit without measure, as much as Nature was capable of: and as God, possessed and recovered the same Glory, which he had with the Father, before al Worlds; He now sheds a­broad this, which ye now see and hear. Great Princes reserve the greatest Gifts, and Entertainment, unto the daies of greatest Solemnity, as Coronation, or Conquest. The day of Christs Ascention, and sitting, and so posses­sion of Glory, is the day of his Coronation and Con­quest, returns into his own Country, and there tri­umphs, and then gives Gifts, enlargeth himself in the Graces of his Spirit, Eph. 1.20, 22, 23. when Christ was set in Heavenly places, and advanced to his Glory, It was that he might be Head of his Church, and might fill all in all. By this he comes to be Head, and hath all Graces: By this he comes to communicate himself, not in sparing manner, but fully, and freely, he fils all in all.

6. By this thou mayest be enlarged in all Services; not only receive more Graces, but exercise what thou hast received in a more active, and excellent manner, than ever otherwise thou should'st, or could'st have attained unto. The Glory of our Savior over-shadowing thee, wil make thee pray gloriously, lead a glorious life, and perform glorious Duties. Thus our Savior disputes, John, 14.22. Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that beleeveth in me, shall do the Works that I do, that is, in regard of the Doctrine he then delivered, or Works he then wrought: Nay, greater works than these, shall he [Page 341]do; Why? Because, I go to my Father. He goes to possess al Glory, in al the fulness of the Execution of al power and dispensation thereof. And therefore ha­ving more, dispenseth more vertually, by the power of his sitting at the right hand of God, than he did when he was bodily present in the daies of his Humilia­tion. Peter by the vertue of his death, and that glorious power which Christ possessed in Heaven, he converted at once, three thousand, which our Savior never did while he preached. Christ healed the Sick, and cured Diseases of such as came to him; but Peter, such as he sent his Hand-kerchief unto. Nay, our Savior ads, Whatever ye ask in my Name, in the Name of Christ now in Glory, as he is gone to his Father: If ye ask any thing never so miraculous, hard, improbable, impossible to Flesh and Blood, he wil bring it about. And upon this Tenure it is, that promise is made to the Church of Thyatira, That she shall rule the Nations with a rod of Iron, Rev. 2.26, 27. A poor handful of People, the mighty, and invincible power of a multitude of Na­tions: See the Reason, it is, As I have received from my Father. This power of this glorious Dispensation, is such as he hath received in a more ful, and eminent manner, he wil so also communicate it. And therefore our Savior professeth, it is expedient that he should go away; for if he go not, he wil not send the Comforter; but if he do, he wil send him, and then he shal lead you into all truth, John, 16.7.13. The last resolution rests there; Al is Christs that the Father hath, and he shal take of Christs, and give to them.

7. By this thou maiest be sure thou canst not miss of Eternal Life. This was the end why Christ receives, God the Father gives this Glory, that he may give it unto the Faithful, John, 17. Thou hast given me pow­er over all Creatures, that I may give unto them Eter­nal Life: Christ cannot miss of his End, nor thou of Glory. And if al power can bring to Eternal Life, thou [Page 342]canst not but enjoy it. Christ must fail of his intent, if thou fail of thy happiness: and therefore you shal find our Savior so solicitous to settle the hearts of his Disci­ples in this, and himself so unweariable to accomplish it, John, 14.2, 3. Let not your hearts be troubled, &c. They were, and al the Saints find a hard shock here, they are troubled what wil become of them at last, and how shal they once arrive at the Haven, the storms so strong, the waves so fierce, oppositions from without so great, corruptions from within so out-ragious? Why our Sa­vior saies, Be not troubled, I go to prepare a place. True, there be Mansions enough; but how hard to come at them? He answers, I wil come and bring you to my self.

USE, 4. Of Instruction.

If God give Glory to Christ, how unreasonable is it for us sinful wretches, to deny our Savior his own, his due? If the Father give it; we should be ready, and careful ever to acknowledg it. We do not the work of Angels, but the work of God himself. And this is the Scope of the Father in al his Counsel, and therefore it should be ours. He turns the Trade this way; The Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judg­ment to the Son, that all men might honor the Son, as they honor the Father, John, 5.22, 23. As great Princes, when they wil advance any Person, whom they purpose to make a Favorite, they so contrive that all business must come through his hand, that al may eye him, honor him, and have dependance upon him. So it is with the Father: Christ is his Favorite, he hath so ordered it, that al must come through his hand, al from the Father by him, al through him returned to the Fa­ther. So the Father professeth, Phil. 2.10, 11. He hath given him a Name above all Names, that at his Name, all might bow. As therefore the Father deter­mined, [Page 343]mined, so we resolve: I have both glorified him, and will glorifie him, John, 11.28.

There were Three things, as ye have read before, in the words.

  • 1 The Parties for whom Christ praies: such as the Father had given him.
  • 2 What he praies for: That they might be where he is.
  • 3 The end of this their being with Christ: That they might see the Glory which the Father had gi­ven him.

Before we could come at the Second of these, there was one Point, which was supposed, and taken for gran­ted, which makes way for al those that follow: namely, That Christ was in Heaven, and did enjoy the fulness of Glory there, given him of the Father, and of both these, that is, both the Parts of the Point(

  • 1. That Christ is in Heaven.
  • 2. That he is possessed of the fulness of Glory, by gift from the Father, at his right hand, both as Second Person, and as Mediator, God and Man, Redeemer of the World

)we have fully written.

And before we can proceed to the Second Thing, which was formerly propounded, and wherein the pith of the Prayer of our Savior appears, containing the main thing petitioned, we shal be enforced to take in the last clause of the Verse, as being nothing else, but an ampli­fication of the former Doctrine, and laies out unto us, the cause and reason whence it comes, that the Father gave, and Christ received this so great Glory.

The first Original, from whence this, so great and un­conceivable Glory proceeds, It is, from the Love of the Father, towards our Savior, his blessed Son. And that Love is not of yesterday, nor of late, or in this last Age of the World occasioned; but it issues out of his antient and everlasting Lover, wherewith he imbraced [Page 344]the Lord Jesus, before the World was; and that not on­ly finished and brought to perfection, but before the first corner stone, before the Foundation thereof was laid.

I wil not give way to any curious Speculation; but I beleeve it's true, and I suppose it's suitable to the mea­ning of the words, That the Father laid the Foundati­on of the Love of his Son in his own heart and thoughts, in order of Nature, before in his everlasting purpose he laid out in his contrivement, the first Pillars and Princi­ples, upon which the World was founded. He under­stands himself directly, al other; Quatenus sui imagi­nem gerunt. So Wisdom seems to speak, Prov. 8.22. He possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his Works of old. The first beginning of Gods way, is to understand himself.

But we shal content our selves with that which is taken up with the currant, and common consent of al. And then we have two Points.

  • 1. The Father loved his Son from everlasting, before the Foundation of the World: And this we hand­led formerly in the foregoing verse, 23.
  • 2. That which is of fresh Consideration, unto which we shal speak a few words very briefly, is, the force of Argument, or Reason here laid forth, viz. The everlasting love wherewith the Father em­braced his Son, is the first cause why he gave him everlasting Glory.

The Eternal Glory of Christ, is a Gift of the Eternal Love of the Father.

In grows out of this root, it issues firstly out of this Fountain. Hither our Saviors thoughts arise, and here he rests. This is the Crown of Glory, and the Diadem in the Crown; and the lustre and shine of that is, The Love of the Father. To this our Savior ascends, and [Page 345]in this he satisfies himself, and he would lead al his, as afterwards we shal see. Had not the Father given him glory out of his love, glory it self would never have given our Savior content. Nay Heaven and glory it self had not been worth the loving nor having, unless the love of God were in them. That is the quintessence of al.

We shal open shortly two things.

  • 1. What we must understand this love to be.
  • 2. How this love is the cause of this glory.

For the right discovery and discerning of this love, that we may come as neer the mind of our Savior and the meaning of the text, as we may, we shal with warines, in some doubtful Seas, sound and cast several pas­sages, that we may find, where the Channel lies.

  • 1. It cannot then be taken for the spiritual and spe­cial fruits and effects of Gods love, which the Lord dis­penseth to his, according to the good pleasure of his wil, of which the Apostle speaks. Rom. 5.5. The love of God is shed abroad in our Hearts. This rather looks at the fountain, that those streames, for which Jude Prayes, Grace, Peace, and Love be multiplied. Jude.
  • 2. For this love is from eternity! so are not those fruits and expressions: because they are put forth in time.

Beside, the glory of our Savior is one of those fruits which are here said to Issue from that love. And I sup­pose it doth vertually and summarily include those spir­itual expressions, which makes way for it.

2. Somtime, the love of God is put by a Figurative speech for Election, as that, in Rom. 9.13. Jacob have I Loved, that is, Elected, or set apart, to be the subject of the expressions of his love.

And this also seems not to fit the place in hand, For it goes somwhat against the grain of the phrase. The love in the former and following words, in the verse before and after, leads us to another apprehen­sion, [Page 346]and looks another way.

Beside, the aim of our Savior, and his expression would perswade one to think, that he eyes somthing in the Father, which in a peculiar manner relates to him. Not that which equally and indifferently belongs to the Holy Spirit and himself also, as that purpose of Electi­on doth.

Nor yet is this meaning so fully suitable to the sense of the place and force of the Argument. For glory was given and doth appertain to our Savior, not as man a­lone, but as the Second person in the glorious Trinity as we opened, and gave in undeniable evidence thereof in the former Doctrine. As our Savior was the subject of this glory, which was given, so is he the subject of that love, which gives it.

But that Election, properly so termed, should be attributed to Christ, as the second person, I do not remember that any Scripture evidenceth. Therefore in the.

Third and last place, I do conceive, that this love is attributed to the Father, in a personal regard, and for the manner of it, it doth in a proper and peculiar sort, appertain to him, and Issues from that inward and in­timate relation, that is betwixt the Father and the Son. The Father gives al to the Son, as Son. The Son re­turnes al to the Father, as Father. Nor a Father, be­cause God, but because he hath a Son. Not Son. Be­cause God. But because he hath a Father. And hence it is, they are said to have an In-being each in other. Beleevest thou, that the Father is in me, and I in the Father? Joh. 14.8, 9. Thou in me, and I in thee, that they may be one, as we are one. And for that rea­son it is, the Father is said, To dwel in Christ, the se­cond person. Joh. 14.10. And that cannot in any propriety of speech be said of the Essence, because that the person dwels not in the Essence. For relations make no impression in the subject.

Hence it is, the Lord Jesus becomes the object of his Father love: his heart wholly affects, his thoughts are wholly set upon him, taken up with him. An infinite and eternal Favorite of an infinite and eternal Father. Called, the express Character of his Fathers person. Hebr. 1.3. No such likeness. No such Love. So that he cannot once look off from him, Enamoured with him, and with an infinite fulness of Soul-pleasing satisfaction, takes contentment in him. Hence our Savior professeth Prov. 8.30. I was dayly his Delight. The Original word [...] a com­pound of [...] intueri [...] retinere, so to eye, blande applica [...]e fe alteri, ut inclusum retineamus in solidum. So to Eye and pleasingly to apply our selves to another, as to hold & keep that other with us for ever.

So the Father doth gaze upon the infinite beauty of his own image in his Son, bestows his affection wholly upon him, and holds him to himself for ever.

The Father and the Son being subsistences of the same Essence, they are one with another, in regard of the Essence, unto which they be adjoined, and one in another in regard of the personal relation that is betwen them: they are the delight one of another, and glorifie each other continually. The issue then is, In that the Father eyes, affects, delights in his Son, as the brightness of his Glory, the express image of his per­son, as his only begotten, bearing his similitude and likeness, in an unconceivable and unmatchable resem­blance: This love in this manner, is proper to the Fa­ther, the fountain and first cause of that glory the Lord Jesus had with the Father, before the world was, and the first cause whence that glory comes to be restored, after he had emptied himself of his glory, and suffered the shameful death of the Cross. Father glorifie me with thy self, with the same glory that I had with thee, before the world was. And hence it is, our Savior is said to be in the bosom, and to come from his bosom. [Page 348]He lay in the bosom of his love, and from thence was sent to reveal those bosom secrets of the riches of his free love and Grace, which Els had never seen Sun.

This is the love wherewith the Father loved the Son, before the world: and this love is the cause, why he gave him that glory. And that appears by a double Reason.


Love laies out it self for the behoof and benefit of the thing beloved, as much as may be, for the furtherance of the good of it to the utmost of that perfection its able to contrive, and the other able to receive; saies not in wishes, but is active and working, not de­sires only in a kind of complementing formality, but really procures, what may be most useful for the ad­vancement of the thing beloved. Let us not love in word and Tongue only, 1. Joh. 3.18. But in Deed.

The love of the Father being of greatest excellency, e­ven of unconceivable vertue & efficacy, & our Savior be­ing of unmatchable likeness to draw out the love of the Father, and incomparable worth to deserve it, it could not be, but so great love should give the greatest good to one of greatest desert: and therefore must give him that incomprehensible glory, which might be the amaze­ment of the hearts of men and Angels, through al eter­nity.

Behold here is the incomprehensible glory of the ever blessed Son, given out of the unconceivable love of the Father of glory. Hence the Evangelist, Joh. 3.35. The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. In love there is no lack; and its boun­tiful; and studies the advancement of the thing beloved: So Jonathan to David. I know thou shalt be King in Israel, and I shal be second to thee. He loved him as his own Soul, and could have given that to him, and therefore did not grudg him the Kingdom.

And however it cannot stand with the glory of the Father, that his Son should be above him, yet he pro­vides for eminency of honor answerable to his excellen­cy. He hath so provided, carried al things by the coun­sel of his own wil, and course of his providence, to bring in al praise to this Christ. He hath given power to him, even power to have life, and to quicken whom he wil, and to judg al. Joh. 5.20. to 23. That al might honor the Son, and they honor the Father.

2. Love is of a cementing Nature, desires union and neerness with the thing beloved, is not pleased nor satis­fied but with the presence of that, which it doth affect: seeks the fellowship, society, and company of that in a special manner. Its the guise of the Spouse that is sick of Love, when she went to seek her Savior. Cant. 3. I found him, whom my Soul loved, I held him, and would not let him go. So Ruth to Naomi, when she perswaded her to depart, and go into her own Countrey, Intreat me not to leave thee, where thou goest, I wil go, where thou livest, I wil live, and where thou diest, there wil I be Buried. Ruth. 1.16, 17.

Now the love of the Father, being of infinite purity and perfection, must needs have like proportionable operation: and therefore must not only affect the pre­sence of his Son, but must provide for the injoyment of it, in the neerest and fullest communication of himself, that may be: and hence, as he came out of his bosom, and left his glory: so also he must bring him unto glory, that he may again lie in the bosom of his love. This our Savior intimates. Joh. 13.3. Knowing that the Father gave al things into his hand, and that he came from God, and went to God: he came from the Father for the accomplishment of the great Work of Redemp­tion, and he furnished him with the supply of al power, and al provision, al things in Heaven and Earth, to at­tend him, until he come again to him; and when he is come into Heaven: as he put the greatest glory upon [Page 350]him, so he advanceth him to the neerest familiarity with himself. By his right hand he hath exalted him. Act. 2.33. And set him at his right hand. Verse, 34. That he might make him ful of joy with his counte­nance, that the Eye & smiling countenance of the Father might ever be upon him, and fulness of the perfection of joy in him for ever.

If glory carry with it the greatest perfection that can attend our Savior, and neerest union unto the Father, then the love of the Father wil provide it. But glory includes both greatest perfection in regard of Christ, and neerest union unto the Father. Therefore the love of the Father wil provide for it.

USE, 1. Trial.

We may hereby try what mettal our love is made of, whether it come from the God of Love, carry his like­ness and superscription, that we may be sure, that he will own it at the great day, and we both now and then may find the undoubted comfort of it unto our Souls, we shal know the nature of it, by the efficacy and work of it. As it is in prime, cordial quintessences, if they be made of lively ingredients, they do not only warm the Mouth and heat the Stomach a little, but they search into al the Veins, clear al the passages, Purg al the Hu­mors, and cleanse the Blood, that the Body is recovered to a lively and healthful constitution: But if it warm a little overly, and work no further, we conclude it, Its not the right, it hath not the right work. So with thy love, if it be like the love of God, it wil have the like work; It aimes ever at the glorious good of the thing or person beloved; staies not in these lower and inferior things, but in and by these, looks at those which be higher, and of a more heavenly excellency.

Take then a Survey of the several operations of thy love according to the several occasions, with which it [Page 351]meets, and therein its exercised. What doth it work in the family, where thou livest, in the place, and a­mongst thy neighbours with whom thou dwellest, with thy Brethren who are linked to thee, and thou to them in the fellowship of the Faith? Nay what doth it do for thine own Soul? if there be any power and efficacy it will then appear.

In thy family thou castest up and down how to com­pass the things of this life, and art marvailous busie to contrive al earthly conveniences to thine own content. Thou seekest what to Eat, to Drink, what to put on, and obtainest what thou seekest, and thy love looks no further. Surely its worldly love, and that in the lowest degree. Thou wilt do as much for the beasts of the field, and Heards of Cattel, as for thy servants, Chil­dren, family. Thou dealest courteously with those, who shew Kindness to thy self, yieldest repect to mens places, honorest their persons, carriest thy self honestly and inoffensively towards al. This love is no great excel­lency, do not the Publicans and sinners the same?

Nay, it may be, thou dost incourage men in a good course and strengthenest their hearts and hands in the profession or the Gospel: labourest for some knowledg of the truth, and ablities to holy services, that thou maiest carry out thy profession with applause and ap­probation of such, with whom thou dost converse. Lookest after ability to please eares, rather than for hu­mility and abasedness of heart to please God, and here thou art at thy furthest, desirest to be no other, and do no more. And its the Pitch thou wouldest have others to aim at. This is but the love of Formalists and moralists. Thou never hast the love of God shed abroad in thy heart, nor yet the true love for the good of thine own Soul to this day. If thy love had been from God▪ it would not have ceased until it had brought thee and others unto Heaven, and glory, and God. No [...] that it is in our power to do this, but its certain, if the [Page 352]Love of God be in us, it wil make us look at this, and be easeless to endeavor after this. So Paul travels till Christ be formed: not til they had got a form of Godli­ness, until Morality, or Civility was formed in them; but Christ, glorious Grace, Power, Peace. This is God-like, Christ-like Love.


Whether our Love to the Lord Christ, be God-like Love, it's then certain God wil own it, Christ accept it, and we may find comfort in it. If it bear the Image of the Love of the Father, it wil imitate. God loved the Son, and gave al things to the Son: Do likewise, give thy self, yield and resign thy soul, and al things un­to Christ: Thy Mind, let him teach thee; Heart, let him rule thee; Affections, let him order thee, Rom. 12.1. 1 Cor. 6. last. He out of his Love exalted him far above all Principalities and Powers, and whate­ver is named. Do thou set up the Lord in thy Soul, far above al profits, pleasures, thy dearest lusts, thy dar­ling delights, al powers, and principalities, the princi­pality of thine own wil; mights and dominions, migh­ty and domineering distempers; above every name, the name of thine own Parts and Gifts, the name of thy Glory and Credit, and that which is named in another World, even thy safety and Salvation.

He gave him Glory, made him Lord and King. Acts, 2.36. Do thou likewise. Let him Lord it over thy Lusts, thy Pride, thy haughty, and high thoughts, and bring every thing into obedience. Rev. 4.10. Cast down the Crown of al thy Excellencies, whatever is most honored, admired, loved, lay it at his foot. Ho­nor him with al thy substance. As he in the Gospel, if he need, let it go.

USE, 2. For COMFORT to the Saints, whom are beloved of the Father through Christ.

Where he loves, his love wil work alike. He is not the weaker for the working, nor hath the less for his gi­ving. He loveth thee as Christ, therefore he wil glori­fie thee, as he hath done to him. Get Love, and gain al; Love carries al with it. If he love thee, if dead, he wil quicken; if weak, he wil strengthen; if damned, he wil save; though stubborn, he wil draw thee: With an everlasting Love, I have loved thee; and therefore I have drawn thee.

USE, 3. Of Direction.

How we may gain the Gift of Glory from the hand of God. 1. Set his Love on work, and that wil set his Grace, Power, and Spirit on work, to be enlarged in al the glorious operations thereof. Go, go to this, 2 Thes. 3, 5. The Lord direct your hearts into the Love of God. This wil give God no rest: This made him send his Son, and set his Counsel on work, to con­trive al for thy good. By this thou maiest plead, and wilt certainly prevail, John, 16. I will not say, I wil ask the Father, for the Father himself loveth you, q. d. though I shal speak a good word, yet there is that which wil do it, and that it may be more effectually. That Love sent me, set me on work, therefore I need not set that on work. As David to Jonathan, 1 Sam. 20.8. Thou shalt deal kindly, for thou hast brought thy Ser­vant into Covenant with God. When Boas his heart was towards Ruth, Naomi tels her, Ruth, 3. last, He will never rest, until he bath done the thing.

2. Keep we our selves in this Love, John 15.10. If we keep his Commandements, we shal abide in his Love. John 14.21, 23. Jude 20.

And thus we have done with this last Clause, which we said we were inforced to take into consideration, before we would come to the main Point▪ wherein the pith of our Saviors Prayer appears, which was the Second Par­ticular observed in the Verse, and are now to enquire into it.

The thing which our Savior praies here so earnestly for: The 2d Partic. That they might be where he is.

And thence we have this Point; namely,

Our Savior doth affectionately desire to have the presence of the Faithful in Heaven with himself.Doct.

I say, he affectionately desires, and that appears in his expression, I WILL: Which implies Three Things in this place, as thus used.

That it is thing which suits the heart of the Lord Christ, and which he chuseth, as a thing, that is wel plea­sing to him. This is as he would have it.

2. That he presents the efficacy of his Merits, and O­bedience before God the Father; and by vertue of the Covenant and Agreement betwixt him and the Father transacted, touching his Elect and Chosen, whose Re­demption, and Recovery, he hath undertaken: and he challengeth, and claimeth at the hands of the Father, the enjoyment of Heaven, and Happiness, which he hath purchased for his Servants the Faithful, and his enjoy­ment of them, and their presence.

3. He earnestly requests, and praies unto the Father for the accomplishment, and performance of this.

The first and last of these Particulars, ye have fully declared by the same word, as used upon the like occasi­on. When our Savior was to enter into his Agony in the Garden, a little before he was betrayed, he prayed more earnestly, saies the Text; If it be possible, let this Cup pass; and in the close, ends and issues al with this subjection, Not as I will, but as thou wilt, Marth. 26.39. that is, according to the Rules of Nature, and Rea­son, I would chuse, and do desire mine own preservati­on, as man: yet as Mediator, having undertaken the Re­demption of mine, I submit my Wil and Prayers to thy good pleasure, and purpose. And for the Second Par­ticular, it's thus also plain: Because his Prayer is one part of his Priestly Office, and of that Intercession, which he makes for his redeemed ones: and that appears a­mongst other things, in this; As he purchased, so in a righteous way he may obtain, the performance of al that good from the Father in the behalf of his; That they may be with them, and happy in them for ever, Isa. 53.11. He shal see the travel of his Soul, he shal see the fruit of his dying and praying, the bringing of his unto God the Father into Heaven, and their blessedness there. And this our Savior doth not as man only, but as God-man, the Mediator of his Elect, as he volunta­rily submitted to the place of a Surety, and became a Servant for our sakes, and so less than the Father, John 14.30. The Father is greater than I. Look as his Complaint, so his Prayer, may be conceived, as issuing and proceeding from the same ground. But when he complains, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? he was not forsaken of God, by the withdrawing of the sence and sweetness of his Favor, as man only, but as Surety; therefore as Mediator, and therefore so he prayed, and so was heard then, and now also heard and accepted of God the Father.

And this affectionate desire of our Savior, appears in this; That as he cannot take content in Heaven, unless [Page 356]he have his Faithful with him: So he wil not rest in Heaven, but wil come again to fetch them to him. John 14.3. I will come again, and take you to my self. He hath betrothed his Bride and Spouse here, and he wil come (as somtimes Princes and States come from their own Places and Kingdoms) with the great retinue of his Courtiers, and attendance of glorious Angels, thou­sands shal go before him, and thousand thousands ad­ministring to him, at the Solemnization of the day of Marriage; and he shal say, as in Psal. [...]0. Gather my Saints to me, those that have made a Covenant with me by Sacrifice. We shal al be taken up with him into the Clouds, and he shal carry his Bride with Triumph into his own Country and Kingdom, into Heaven, and there we shal be ever with him.


1. Hereby the Scope and End of the great Work of Restitution of lost man, is in part, and in an especial part thereof attained. This is the end of the Death and offering of our Savior, Heb, 9.7, 8. But into the Second, went the High-Priest alone, once every Yeer, not without Blood; the Holy Ghost thus signifying, That the way into the Holy of Holies, (that is, into Heaven) was not yet made manifest, while the first Tabernacle was standing: but verse 11. Christ being come an High Priest of good things to come, not by the blood of Goats, but by his own Blood, he entred once into the Holy Place (that is, Heaven) having obtained eter­nal Redemption for us. So that we have boldness to enter into the Holiest of the Blood of Jesus, by a new, and living way, which he hath consecrated for us through the Vail, that is, his Flesh. This is the Scope of his Resurrection and Ascention, John 14.3. In my Fa­thers House, there be many Mansions, I go to prepare a place for you, that is, He ascended into Heaven, that [Page 357]by vertue of his Ascention, we also might arise, and as­cend, and sit in Heavenly places with him. For Ascen­tion doth firstly appertain to our Savior; and from him, as our Head, it is communicated to us, as his Members. Had not the Second Adam ascended, for ought I can see, no Son of Adam had ever come into Heaven.

When the last Enemy, which is Death, is vanquished, and that he hath brought al the Elect home, and presen­ted them to God the Father; Here am I, and the Chil­dren that thou hast given me; then he shall deliver up the Kingdom to God, even the Father. The Rule and Government of our Savior, in al these outward Dispen­sations, shal be at an end. The end and scope of the Death, and Obedience, Ascention, and Redemption wrought out by Christ, that he must affectionately de­sire. But this is so. Therefore,

2. By this means, the perfection of his Body mysti­cal, and himself as mystical Christ, is accomplished; without this, somthing would be wanting, to make up the fulness thereof. Eph. 1. last, It's said of the Church (and is true of each Member for their measure) It is the fulness of him, who filleth all in all: the hearts of al his Saints, with al saving Graces. If at the last day of that great assembling of the first-born, there should be but the poorest Saint wanting, and out of the way, the mystical Body of Christ, would so far want it's fulness: if a fin­ger, or a joynt be lacking, the Body would lack som­thing of its ful integrity. And therefore Eph. 4.13. God never leaves sending Officers, they never leave ga­thering, and perfecting the Body of Christ, until we all arrive and meet at the unity of Faith, and the acknow­ledgment of the Son of God. The Head and Members should in reason be present one with another. The Hus­band and Wife in comliness, should co-habit in the same place, and dwel together. Christ is the Head, his Faith­ful his Members; Christ the Husband is gone into his own, out of fair Countrey; and therefore he cannot but [Page 358]affectionately desire the coming of his Bride unto him. Nay, rather than fail, as we heard, he wil come down from Heaven, and fetch her. John 14. I will take you to my self, that where I am, ye may be also.

3. The compleat happiness of the Saints, can only by this means be fully procured.

The Lord redeems, not only from guilt, and punish­ment, and power of our sins and miseries, but even from the presence of them. And we cannot be wholly freed from the presence of the evil of the world, before we be taken out of the World. And therefore as the Lord hath advanced our Savior far above Principalities and Powers, beyond the gun-shot of Satans temptations, and the evils of this vale of Tears: So the Lord Jesus provides that we may triumph with him, as we have suf­fered with him, Matth. 13.41. Therefore in the Para­ble, while we live in the Field of the World, and the Church is here Militant, there wil be Tares, which wil annoy and trouble. But when the Lord shal send his Angels to gather out of his Kingdom al things that of­fend, and them which do iniquity: Then shal his Saints be translated into the Kingdom of the Father. That which is the end of Christs Redemption, the perfection of his Body, the compleat happiness of his People: that he must affectionately desire. For the end ever carries, and commands the affection of the Agent, who works by Counsel and Reason.

USE, 1. Of Instruction.

Hence al that are given to Christ, must be raised from the dead, and be in an immortal condition, and in ever­lasting happiness. As our Savior reasoned against the Sadduces, God is the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob: God is a God in Covenant with the Living: Therefore Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob must live, and that in Bo­dies and Souls, because he is the God of both. So those [Page 359]that must ever be with Christ, they must have a Being, and be raised out of the dust: nor matters it, though they were returned to the dust, and that scattered into the four corners of the World; into the Sea, where they have been drowned; into the Earth, where they have been buried; into the Fire, where they have been burned. The Lord wil send his Angels, and he wil ga­ther his Elect: The Sea shal give up her dead, the Fire and Earth their dead. They shal be made immortal, that so they may be ever with the Lord.

USE, 2. Of Reprehension.

It condemns both the Spirits and Practices of such, who cannot abide the presence, much less prize the com­munion, and company of the Saints. Christ is not at rest in Heaven without them: and they are in a Hell, count themselves in a Prison, while the are in the place, and the presence where they be. Certainly Christ is deceived, or thou art justly to be condemned, as one who hast not the heart of Christ, the Grace and Spirit of Christ in thee, and that one day thou shalt find. They shal ever be with Christ, and thou that canst not indure their society in the Kingdom of Grace, thou shalt never have their company in the Kingdom of Glory. Such is the exquisite Constitution, and Soveraign temper of the Irish Mold, that there, poysonous Vermin, Toads, and Spiders, and such like, they die presently, if confined to the compass of the Earth, and therefore they forthwith leave the Mold, lest they lose their lives. So here, if thou countest it a kind of death to be confined to the ho­ly Society, and gracious, and Spiritual communion of the Saints, it's certain, Thou hast the poyson of a prophane, and a graceless heart within thee. They went out from us (saies the Apostle) because they were not of us; had they been of us, had they grown upon the same root, the Lord Jesus, knit one to another by the same Spirit, [Page 360] They would never have departed from us.

When loos-hearted, and wicked Hypocrites, are hem­med in by the Communion of the Faithful at unawares, they stand upon coals, and sit upon Thorns; like Fish out of their Element, their hearts faint, and die away presently, as professedly contrary to the Spirit of our Savior, as Light to Drakness. Christs Wil is, They should be where he is: and their wil is, To be any where else, but where they are.

USE, 3. Of Spiritual Comfort.

Hereby we may learn to support our selves in several occasions, that would prejudice us in our Christian Course: Hence we may fetch supply to bear up our hearts in al over-bearing pressures. Comfort against al Opposition of our Spiritual Adversaries, which may hin­der our Happiness: Against contempt of the World that would disparage our persons and Professions: A­gainst our own weaknesses, and feebleness, that might discourage us in a Christian Course. The former Do­ctrine affords Spiritual refreshing against al these: A­gainst the fiercest of al opposition, which al the Enemies of our Salvation can make against our progress, and suc­cess in a Christian Course. The Prayer of our Savior, is above the Power of Hel, and Devils, though they rage; above their malice and policy, though they under­mine; above the corruption of mine own heart, which would betray, and deliver me as a prey, into the hands of Devils, and their Instruments. This Prayer of our Sa­vior, shal carry the Cause against them all, and thee to Heaven in despight of al. This Request wil not be de­nied; this Wil of Christ, nothing can resist. The grant of the Father to our Savior, none in Heaven and Hell can frustrate, to make the Lord repeal his purpose.

This was the best support that shored up Peter, when he was at the hardest shock, Luke 22.31, 32. Simon, [Page 361]Simon, Satan hath desired to winnow thee as Chaff; but I have prayed that thy Faith fail not. Thy Heart, and Hope, and Grace, and al might have failed, and would; but I have prayed that it fail not.

Thou happily wilt say, Satan is subtil indeed, and the snares of the World secret; but I find most harm from mine own heart, a Wil that cannot submit, and wil not come, though I might be saved. Look higher and fur­ther for help, to the Prayer of our Savior now in Hea­ven, and there thou mayest certainly find. Christ saies, Father, I will that they be with me. The Devil, and men, and thine own heart, wil the contrary: whether wil the Father grant, and which of al these is like to pre­vail? The wil of Christ shal stand certainly, and he wil do, whatever he wil do; the wil of Devils shal not hin­der it, thine own wil shal not be able to resist.

2. Comfort against all the contempt of the World; when the wicked, and the mighty despise the meanness of the persons, disdain the presence of the poor Saints. If thou beest rejected on Earth, and received into Heaven: if men disdain thy Company, and Christ desire it, nay, the World desire it, the more our Savior longs for it, and thee: Thou hast no cause to be discouraged, nor discom­fited. Thus David fenceth himself against the reproach of Michal, Oh how gloriously, &c. saies he, It was before the Lord, who chose me, rather than thy Fathers house, 2 Sam. 6.21. As Haman solaced himself in this, as no ordinary favor, in that the Queen had invited him alone to her Banquet, Hesth. 5.12. Yea, Hesther the Queen let no man, &c. Much more here, when the Lord Christ professeth, I pray not for the World, but for all that thou hast given me, &c. John 17.9.

3. Comfort against those feeblenesses which attend upon us in our best Duties. My Prayers are so poor, my Desires so faint and feeble, that I rather beg a denial than have any hope to attain what I desire, nor like to see Heaven, nor Christ there. Nay, somtimes not a heart [Page 362]to ask: and somtimes so much deadness and heartlesness in asking, that how can I think to come to Heaven, when I have not a heart to desire it? Be it, thy heart and thy prayers fail thee; yet the prayer of our Savior ever took place, and found speeding acceptance in Hea­ven. Joh. 11.41, 42. Father I know that thou hear­rest me alwaies. He is alwaies soliciting, and pleading our cause before the Father, and he cannot but find ac­ceptance. Therefore alwaies preserved. Keeps them in the world; alwayes assisted, alwaies quickned to al perseverance.

USE, 4. Of Exhortation.

If Christ affectonately desire our presence, let us long to be with him, to be out of the Pest-House of the world, where we have been infected: out of this prison of our corrupt Nature, where we have been deeply annoy­ed with the Body of death, and the stench of this carcase of abominations we bear about with us. Long we for the consummation of the marriage, long for this day, that our Savior so much desires. Our Savior longs for our company, worthless, Wretched that we be, though he have not need of us, and was ever happy without us, lies in the Bosom of his Father, and hath been his delight from Eternity, who hath millions of Angels to attend and serve him.

Yea so far longed for our company, that he came down from Heaven, and took our Nature, that he might die for our sins in the daies of his humiliation, that those may not hinder our beleeving and coming to him; and he would come again from Heaven, that he may take us to himself, that death may not stop our passage. There­fore we have more reason to long for him, of whom we have so much need, & in whom we shal find so much hap­piness, to sleep out our daies in the bosom of his love through al eternity. If our Feofment and inheritance [Page 363]lay here, he would be with us here, but it is not, but reserved for us in Heaven, where he is, and therefore he wil have us with himself. So they Isa. 26.8. The desire of our Souls is towards thy Name, and the re­membrance of thee. This is the last of al desires, where they are compleat and ended. The Soul desires union to the Body in the Grave: but Body and Soul desire union with Christ, To follow the Lamb, where ever he goes. Why stand we gazing one upon another? go we to Heaven. When our Savior saies, I will, they be with me, Answer, and I wil be with thee, Lord. Say so ye Fathers and Mothers in Israel, ye are almost within sight of shore: there is one step to Death, that is the Wagon, and then to Christ. Say so ye Yong men and Maidens, though ye may live long, ye cannot better, this is the marriage I wil go also, I wil be with Christ also, who hath loved me, died for me, and redeemed me. And if any be yet in a demur, let me ask them, as Laban asked Rebecca. Gen. 24.57, 58. When Eleazar, Abrahams servant came to fetch her, Wilt thou go? and she said, I wil go. So let me propound the wil of Christ. He hath chosen it, desires it, prayes for it, what say ye? wil ye go to Jesus? I wil go. Truly, let us go. The time wil come, ye would be glad to hear that voice, Come ye blessed &c. Where then are our hearts, that your hearts should be thus affected? either the Saints have lost their interest, or their affections. Either Christ hath few servants, or they have lost their desires.

  • 1. What Hinders?
  • 2. What might help?

Hindrances are Three.

The First Hindrance. When we surfet on these sinful pleasures and contents in the world: those eat up our desires, and take off the edge of our Affections. [Page 364]As Lot neer Sodom, then in Sodom, then cannot be perswaded to leave Sodom. [...], Hemammered, Lime-twigged with the things of the world, as Birds cannot find their Wing. Gen. 19.16. As surfettings take off our Stomach. Al men seek their own, none the things of Christ. Phil. 2.21.

The Second Hindrance. When through carelessness and guilt they loose their evidence, and assurance of their interest in Christ, and acceptance with him. And therefore fear and so fly him as a Judg, rather than re­joyce to be with him as a Savior. Is it not that Christ, whose Blood I have shed, whose Name I have dishonor­ed, whose Spiri [...] I have greeved? They think to appear before Christ as Malefactors before a Judg. As though stubble should be with fire. Who shal dwel with those Everlasting Burnings? Hence David desires some respit. Oh spare a little before I go hence. Psal, 39.13.

The Third Hindrance. When we please our selves with the certainty of what we have, and settle upon our own sufficiency, and think we can make a shift: and therefore lay aside the care of a Christ, becauss that dale is mown, that danger is over, and fal hand-pat to other things. The ful Soul despiseth the Hony-Comb. Wind and raw Humors cloy the Stomach. As Bears wil live many months, and suck the moisture of their Claws.

Helps are Three.

The First Help. Make sure of our interest in Christ. And maintain it. I go to your God, and my God, your Father and my Father. Joh. 20.17. No man will leave the poorest cottage, the meanest provision, where he is, for the uncertain Hopes of a palace, when he knows not whether ever he shal injoy it. Ye know the place and the way. Joh. 14. And therefore they de­sire not to stir. He that knows he hath a Father to go to, he goes freely.

The Second Help. See the dayly use and need of a Savior, and that wil maintain a dayly desire; as men of an useful, helpful companion. Him we must needs have, sales one, I pray you cal him: him we cannot want, I pray you intreat him. We can do nothing with­out him, by any means prevail with him. So they say.

Truly without Christ we can do nothing. Joh. 15.4. He saith it, we find it. Each man desires to maintain his life. Such is Christ to us. Col. 3.4. When Christ who is our life &c. Therefore Paul saw more of himself and his life in Christ, than in himself. 2 Cor. 5.8. And therefore desired to be absent from the Body, that he might be present with Christ. And that he was a Stranger, while he was in the Body:

The Third Help. There is nothing desireable, but the Lord Jesus.

We have done with the second particular.

The Third and last comes now to be considered and that is, The scope of our Savior in this his petition, and the maine good and benefit for which our Savior makes this request for them. Namely,

That they might see his Glory.

Not that they might have any glory in themselves, see or satisfie themselves with their own glory, but that they might gaze upon the Glory: Which the Father hath gi­ven to his Son and be swallowed up with the admira­tion thereof and that through al Eternity. q. d. That is the staple commodity for which they trade in Heaven, and the only business, about which they ought to be imployed, and be [...]ow themselves through al worlds. And about this our present inquiry wil be spent for this time.

The happiness of our being in Heaven is to behold the glory of the Lord Jesus,Doct. which he hath received by gift from God the Father.

I say they happiness of our being in Heaven lies in this: for this is the end at which our Savior aimes in this Pray­er. This is the end of that Priviledg and blessing for which he Prayes. For it is not the place of Heaven, though the lustre and beauty of it, is beyond compare, and indeed unconceivable; nor yet our being in Heaven, barely and nakedly considered could satisfie either our desires or wants, and answer the Expectation of the Soul. If Christ were not there, or we might no injoy his presence, and [...]ee his face, though we were shut up in a corner of Heaven, certainly Heaven would be no Heaven, our happiness, no happiness, if we had no Christ. As he said, What availes m [...], if I may not see the Kings face? And therefore the dregs of the venge­ance of Hell is discovered in this, that they shal be de­stroyed from his presence, and from the glory of his power.

The End, we say, is better than the Meanes, as that which adds beauty and am [...]bility to them. The End of our being in Heaven, is better than Heaven it self, and that is to see the glory of Jesus. and hence it is, This spiritual and special communion betwixt Christ and the Soul is ever implied in such expressions, as intimate the happiness of our being in Heaven. So when the Apo­stle would by a more than ordinary Cordial fetch up the fainting hearts of the Saints, here he lands al desires, Hopes, indeavours and expectation. 1 [...]hess. 4. and last. The trump shal blow, the dead shal rise, we shal meet him, and be taken up into the Clouds, and [...]ere [Page 367]we shal over be with the Lord. Not be in Heaven, but be with Christ there, that makes the feast, and have glo­rious communion with him, and injoyment of him. Els Gods frowns and displeasure in Heaven would make it a Hell to the Soul, and that indeed insufferable. Hence the Prophet makes this the highest pitch of al the Hopes and desires he had, and the having of that was enough, and did satisfie fully. Psal. 17.15. Having spoken of the Pomp and prosperity of the ungodly, they had what they would, and did what they would in this world, he reposeth his spirit upon this; As for me I wil behold thy Face in righteousness and when I awake I shal be satisfied with thy likeness. When he awakes at the day of resurrection, The sight of Gods glory gives ful satisfaction. Whom have I in Heaven but thee? Its not Heaven but God in Christ in Heaven, that makes it desirable. All desires of al the hearts of the Saints empty themselves and end here. Their desires are to thy Name. And the remembrance of thee. The Soul in Heaven desires the union of the Body, and the perfecti­on and accomplishment of the number of their fellow brethren. But when Body and Soul are raised, and the Saints completed, then al desires are to Gods Name, and to the remembrance of him. There is the remembrance of nothing else. The things and relations of this life are like prints left in S [...]nd, there is not the least appearance or remembrance of them. The King remembers not his Crown, the Husband the Wife, Father the Child, no­thing that we had, that had any worth and desirableness in it. Its forgotten, only the Name of God in Christ, that is, so far and so much, as he hath manifested himself in his Christ to the Soul: th [...]s now in their Eye and aime, that only comes into remembrance. This is the top and highest pinnacle of perfection, which the Apo­stle hath in his Eye. 1 Joh. 3.1, 2. We are now the Sons of God, but it doth not appear what we shal be: Why, what is that excellency that then may be ex­pected? [Page 368]Answ. We shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. The Sight of his Glory is the highest step and stair of ours.

Here we shal enquire three Things:

  • 1. What this Glory is.
  • 2. What it is to see it.
  • 3. How the sight of this Glory brings in our End, and happiness of our being in Heaven; and that will be the Reason of the Point.

1. What Glory is.

Answ. There be Two Things in it.

  • 1. One is supposed, and that is the worth and excel­lency of such Graces and Perfections, which are in Christ; for al Glory presumes some worth, as the Basis or Bottom, out of which it doth arise. This is included, but not the special consideration atten­ded.
  • 2. The expression, and putting forth of such perfe­ction, in the most eminent operations thereof: therein appears the lustre and beauty of such excellencies, and therefore it is said to be the Glory thereof. Thus the shine of the Sun in its beauty, is called the Glory of the Sun, as we have more at large opened this Point before.

The Glory of Christ then here attended, Is the mee­ting, and concurrence of the expression of all the Divine Perfections and Grace in Christ, in the highest strain of Eminency, and to the utmost activity of that power they can put forth, [...]or the Creature can receive.

Here is the work of Wisdom, and the power and mer­cy of Faithfulness, expressing themselves for the good and welfare the Faithful: But there the Glory of al these [...] discovered to the utmost of al excellency that is therein. The magnificent triumph of the soveraign roy­alty, and Raign of al those excellent perfections of Wis­dom, Mercy, Power, and Faithfulness Christ, set as it [Page 369]were, in the Throne of Estate, Then wil appear the Power of Christ in the highest strain of Excellency, put forth in the destruction of the wicked to the utmost, in al that the damned can endure, and not be annihilated: In the preservation to the utmost of the Saints, that no­thing can be added, desired, received.

The triumph of Wisdom expressed to the utmost, in breaking the Head of the Serpent, out-bidding al his sub­tilties, al the slights of sin, and the deceit of the hearts of the Sons of men, though deceit ful above al things.

The triumph of Mercy and Grace, which hath put forth the utmost of her activity, to quit the [...]eco [...]lings of guilt, and fears and terrors, Conscience never accusing, doubting, fearing any more [...] delivering from the hand of Hell, and Sin, and Death, and Devil; frees from the Faithfulness performed, and al promises, nay, hath been better than al Promises. Al these perfections of our Sa­vior, and not only set on the Throne of Glory, but they heads. Wisdom shal glory over al plots, subtilties po­licies, deceits of the World, and Sin, and Devil, it hath now defeated al.

The Mercy, and Merits, and Blood of Christ, glories over al the curies and guilts, punishments, acculations, fears; and miseries, and death, they are al swallowed up in Victory, they are hereby abolished al. They were upon every occasion annoying, troubling, molesting distracting nibling; they are now swallowed up, their name, and place, and presence appear no more.

Grace glories now over al the violence of temptations, the rage of distempers, the allurements of the World: not only dead, but buried our of the way, and out of sight, it hath now removed al. 1 Cor. 15.24. Christ is said to put down, [...] take off al activity of rule authority and power [...], no right they can claim, no authority they can exercise no pow­er [Page 370]they can put forth [...] whereas here Satan, before con­version, hath a right, exerciseth authority, puts forth power; and al these in part after Conversion.

When thus our Savior is exalted in the Highest strain of Eminency, and activity or al these Divine Excellen­cies and Perfections, far above al Principalities; so that he stands fully possessed of al right in fulness of Com­munication, and the fulness of al exercise for immediate dispensation (How Christ hath Glory given him, we have shewed before) So that there is no impediment in regard of Enemies, World, Flesh, Devil to oppose; no weakness on our part to receive it; no stoppage on Christs part, either in regard of his Covenant, or Coun­sel, and way of his Providence, to cause him to with­hold the letting in of the ful [...]ou [...] of his saving Grace and Mercy in that ful measure the Saints can attain in the Body of Christ.

2. What it is to behold this Glory.

For Answer, enquire two Things:

  • 1. What this Beholding implies.
  • 2. The Manner how it is done.

First: The Word translated here, to Behold, carries three things in it.

  • 1. An attentive eye, and a setled holding of our Mind and thoughts about the things that are presented to our understanding, Heb. 7.4. Now consider how great this man was. When the holy Apostle would draw the Hebrews to the serious attendance of the excellency of the Type, and so of our Savior, who was typified by Melchizedek; he bid them to consider; hold their thoughts bent to the object of so worthy attention.
  • 2. It implies a through viewing of the whol compass of any thing thus presented to consideration, and so the word is very often used among Heathen Authors, to pass as a Traveller from one place to another, to ac­quaint [Page 371]a mans self with the manners, and condition of the place, and people, to the ful. So when the Mind travels to and fro in a serious contemplation of that which is of­fered to our Apprehensions, with a careful search and observation, to take the scantling of whatever on circum­stances of any conceived worth may be in it. Luke, 23.49. It's said the women that followed Christ from Ga­lilee stood aloof off, beholding those things. They kept al the carriages and occurrences of what be [...]el our Savior from first to last.
  • 3. Not only a mans apprehension comes to be exerci­sed, as in the two former; but the quality and nature of the thing, comes so to be taken into our observation and consideration; That the heart comes to be experimen­tally affected therewith, John 12.19. Do ye not see how ye profit nothing, The whol World follows him: that is, your own sence and experience wil give you proof and evidence, that this your opposition, wil do no good.

To behold then, the Glory of Christ, is, by an actual and attentive survey of the excellency thereof, to be sui­tably, or experimentally affected therewith.

2. The Manner how this is done, appears in three Things:

  • 1. Immediately, as he is then pleased to shine in, and send in beams of his Grace and Holiness, directly and nextly upon the Soul, 1 Cor. 13.12. We now see through a Gla [...]s darkly: as the excellency of our Savior comes covered and vailed in Providences and Ordinances, and so made liable to the dimness or our Eye, while we walk in the shadow of darkness here. As the Soul of a man, which cannot come to our view in regard of its Spi­ritual Nature, yet we perceive the presence of it, as it's speaking in the tongue, and stirring in other parts of the Body. So▪
  • 2. We see him then more fully, wese 11. more of [Page 372]him, and the excellency of his Glory, than can be attained in this Life, 1 John 3.2. [...]e shall see him as he is, that is, in himself. We here appre [...]end so much of Christ as the Ordinances either present, or convey in the work thereof, either according to its weakness, or Gods bles­sing. One text affords matter of Humiliation, another of Comfort, another of Direction; and that so much of Christ as he wil drop in, in this or that Ordinance: and how li [...]tle do we see of hin [...] yet that's al we seek; and that's al the good we can receive to do us good. But them [...]hrist in the glorious sufficiency of the fulness of his Grace, shal shine in a-main upon the mind, in the ful beauty of it. Al Comfort, and Peace, and Grace of al kinds, shal like a mighty stream, take up the whol man. Here by re-tale, as persons who are poor, buy, and bring in their Provisions. Then by whol-sale. Here the Light of the Sun shining in a crevis, and day-hole, leaves yet the place dark, but then the Lord Christ shal arise as the Sun of Righteousness, and fil (as that the whol Heaven; so this) the whol heart. So Christ shines in the Counsels, Comrorts &c. of the Ministry of the Word, and makes us see the Day-star arising, but stil there be shadows: But then he wil arise in our hearts, and al these shadows shal fly away. I shall know as I am known.
  • 3. Most effectually and powerfully, 1 John. 3.2. It's the Inference the Apostle makes, and the reason he brings to force this Consequence, and that infallibly. We shal be like him; How comes that? We shall see him as be is. For as the Spirit of Christ, by his Special presence in the Soul, and work upon it, is the only Au­thor of al Grace and Holiness, which we do here, or shal hereafter possess, 2 Cor. 3.18. We are transformed in­to one degree of glorious Grace from another, by the same Spirit. So the Spirit of God, useth first to enligh­ten our minds, a [...] the first means, whereby he comes to make way for himself into the heart, and to communi­cate [Page 373]al that glorious Grace to those, upon whom he is pleased to bestow it. And hence our Savior, when he would difference his Servants from the wicked in the World to whom he never intends any saving good, nor do they partake thereof, he gives this as a ground, John 14.17. The Father will send his Spirit of Truth, whom the World cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him; but ye know him. No Spirit, no Grace. But the World hath no Spirit, because they cannot receive him; and that because they do not see not know: But they see, therefore receive, and there­fore have the Spirit, and therefore have Grace: and therefore the Apostle concludes, 1 John 3.6. Whoever sinneth, hath not seen him, nor known him. True, it is possible the wicked may have a glimmering of the Truth, and hear tel of a Christ, by the common bruit of the World, as they read such things writ: But this is a false Light, the Star-light of some common apprehensions of Reason, Arguments which are presented to us in Speech and Discourse. But the Apostle ads, Eph. 4.20. If ye have heard and learned Christ, and been taught by him as the Truth is in Jesus. Ye have heard of the Truth and Christ, as then are in words which report him, as Arguments and Reasons which discourse and dispute about him; but the Truth as it is in Jesus, as it issues from a Jesus, from a Savior, and from that sa­ving, enlightening, over-powring work; when it's set on by the hand of a Jesus, not by Man, Education, or Disputation, then it wil make men to put off the old man, and be renewed in the spirit of their minds. This the eyeing of Jesus in a right manner in this Life, wil do. But when we come to see Christ as he is in his Glory, all those impediments which either stopped, or lessened the work of the Spirit from conveying that fulness of Grace, which otherwise it would, and by which we might have been perfectly like him, are then taken away.

Now the impediments which stop the current and pas­sage [Page 374]of the Spirit are, either in regard of the means, whereby he is dispensed, or in regard of our hearts, wherein he is received.

1. For the means; they are either narrow, as Con­duits from the Fountain, or Creeks from the Sea, of smal power, and convey little help in spiritual supply, as Word and Sacraments.

Or else the Instruments are weak and cracked, and so stop the stream, and corrupt, and sinful; and therefore though not utterly hinder the work of the Spirit, yet wrong and defile it much.

But then the Lord Christ wil do his work by himself, when his Spirit shal have ful scope; the narrowness of means shal not streighten him, the weakness of instru­ments hinder him, to express the ful power of his Grace in ful perfection, but God shall now be all in all, 1 Cor. 15.28.

1. Whatever Word, and Sacraments, and Prayer, could, or did convey; whatever the Power of Ordi­nance, the Ministry of the Word, the Counsel of Saints, endeavored to work in you; he wil be instead of al, and do more than al. Ye prayed for a Christ, did ye not? Ye heard for a Christ, received for a Christ, conferred, humbled, to come more neer a Christ, to enjoy more of him, do more for him: Alas, that Christ ye desired to hear some Tidings of, ye shal see him, not in weakness of Ordinances, Ministry of his Servants, &c. ye shal see him as he is, in the highest strain of Eminency of al Grace, acting to its utmost for your good, that which they all could not do.

They did convey but imperfect power against sin, peace and comfort to your Conscience: but now ye shal find al power perfectly, and constantly, gloriously con­veyed from this Glory of Christ.

2. There shal be no impediment to hinder or streigh­ten the Spirit from conveying; no impediment on our part, no hindrance in our Souls, because they shal rea­dily [Page 375]receive the ful impression of Grace. The set frame and face of the Soul being alone for Christ, and towards him. The whol imployment of the whol man being nothing else, but to attend upon Christ, and to submit to him, to be carried by the presence, power, and influ­ence of his Spirit alone. Look as it is with In-mates under a Roof; the one is constrained to confine himself, to heap up, and tumble his Houshold-stuff together, be­cause he hath not room to set it forth: but when al are outed, and he hath ful scope in his House and Family, he may order al in their ful beauty. So here, pa [...]ly our Corruptions, partly the World, and Earthly occa­sions keep house with Christ; thoughts of Christ, and the Family, [...]are for the Promises, and for Provision also; pains and labor to settle our Spiritual, the like contrivements to suit our temporal Condition: and al takes up, if not take off, and carri [...] our minds and thoughts, our hearts, our care; so that Christ, and the works of his Grace, are crowded into corners and nar­rows: But then the House wil be free, the heart quit of al these, and Christ wil have ful scope. Hence the Apostle, 1. Thes. 4.17. We shall ever be with him. We are now pestered with unwelcome guests, which we can­not send going, Pride and Peevishness, Wearishness, slug­gishness, &c. and they are with us in our Prayers, Du­ties, Hearing, Conferences: Whence it is we crowd Christ into a narrow corner, not an Ear to hear, a Mind to attend, our Prayers few and faint, &c. We are ma­ted, and molested with Friends, miseries, wants, necessi­ties, families, occasions, they are calling and crowding. But then the Coast wil be cleer, we shal only be with Christ. Thus the Apostle speaking concerning fasting and Prayer, enjoyns the Man and Wife to part mutual Company and Society, and forsake their Contentments in their mutual fellowship, 1 Cor. 7.5. that they might give themselves to Prayer. While we live here, we give away some Love, bestow some delight, spend some [Page 376]thoughts and affections, take some content in these; therefore he would have them al laid aside, that we might give our selves, &c. Now this shal be done at that day: nay not only, and alone bound for Christ: But now it's the whol imployment of the Soul to attend upon him; the Soul hath none other to see, nothing else to do. Rev. 14.4. They follow the Lamb where ever be goes; see no Wife, nor Child, nor Friend, nor Ho­nor, Pleasure, but Christ only; Old things are passed: Have none to love, to desire, to delight in, to be satisfied with, but Christ alone. Now we send our thoughts and affections upon other Errands. If a man knew no­thing, loved nothing, needed nothing, but one thing, how would that carry him, command him, prevail with him?

3. How this brings in this Happiness.

Answ. Upon a double Ground: and here we have a double Reason of the Point.

1. Because men come to receive more of God, and that in the most intimate and inward manner: and this is one end of the great Works of God in our Creation and Redemption, of our being men and Christians, that he might leave the impressions and manifestations of himself, and his Divine perfections upon us, whom he would have to be Monuments of those everlasting Mer­cies, and glorious Attributes through al Eternity. For God cannot but work for his own Glory; and because there can be no addition made to himself, who is infinite in al his Excellencies, therefore there must be only a manifestation of these, and this is the aim of al Gods Counsels. He wil shew forth, and make Editions of his glorious Grace and Mercy, which may be seen, and read, and acknowledged; therefore a world, therefore a man; and he a Vessel of glorious Grace: When they partake most of his glorious Mercy, and are tunn'd top [Page 377]ful of glory, and there is nothing els; Then the Lord attains the end of the work of his Grace. For its not Heaven, the place, nor the freedom from evil, or the presence and confluence of al pleasure, or our being there that makes us happy: But the injoyment of God in al his perfections; and should he withdraw himself, Heaven were a Hel, and we as miserable as Devils. We then attain our supream happiness, when we attain our end, and our good is, to have more of God. Whom have I in Heaven but thee? That Christ may be glorified in life and death.

Its part of the scope of Gods proceeding at the day of judgment. 2. Thess. 1.10. He wil be glorious in his Saints, but admired in al those that beleeve. He wil be glorious in the Eyes of al standers by, Angels and Devils, for the Grace that then shal be expressed in the Saints: But that by faith they have received Christ, and come to be one with God through him, and receive al by him, this dazels the Eyes of Angels, and amazeth the hearts of Devils. Yea its a work beyond admiration implies some thing unexpected, such as we cannot tel the reason of, that is matter of admiration, is not in comprehension.

The Devils have seen men holy and innocent and un­blamable, as Adam in Paradise. But when the Devils shal see such as were haters of Christ and God, to receive Christ, and to be made one with God, through him: to have God to be al in al, when they were without God in the world, this wil make Angels to be swallowed up in admiration.

This is an especial part of that reward that God hath promised unto his: not to have freedom from annoyance, nay the presence of evil, but to have himself: God communicating himself in al the fulness of perfections fully to the Soul, as it is capable of. God is the Ob­jective happiness to the Soul in himself, and so its equal to al: but God communicating himself in his fulness, as [Page 378]far as a sinner is capable, is part of that special reward we have in Heaven. Gen. 15.1. Lament: 3.24.

2. Reas. More of our Souls are for God. For now the strength of the whole man is wholly spent and exer­cised in the injoying of God, and him only and immedi­ately. God without means: God instead of al means: God only and no means. Now some love, and joy, and desire &c. Is spent upon the choice ordinances:

But then none of al these, are in the Eye and desire; but al the faculties of the Soul are fully taken up with God. This is the errand of our lives, and the end why we came into the world. This is intimated in. 2. Thess. 1.11, 12. Wherefore I pray alwaies for you, that God would make you worthy of your Calling, and fulfil al the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power, That the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the Grace of God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. The meaning is, That God would Count them worthy of their calling; That is, the glory unto which they were called: and so Fulfil al the good pleasure of his good­ness; that is, fully bestow al that special good which in the purpose of his good pleasure, he intended to them, and the work of Faith with power; that is, bring the work of faith to perfection.

Now the end of al that glory and fulness of al per­fection and spiritual good he prayes for, is,

  • 1. That the Name of Christ] That is, Christ as made known in his word, Offices, and the great work of Redemption. Might be made glorious in you, in re­ceiving this and the impression of this, that is, that it may be said, See what the Lord Christ hath done.
  • 2. And you al may be made glorious and glorified, not in you selves, but as you are in him.

As he made glorious in you by receiving: So you may be glorified in him, by returning al to him, while you, Put forth the exercise of all upon Christ, and [Page 379]through him, upon God. You by receiving of Grace become to have his image: by the exercise of Grace, you become to be like him, and suck out the sweet of that in­finite good that is in him. For herein lies the beatifi­cal Vision of God. If truly glorious and efficatious, brings in the fruition of him and his goodness, which is our last end, and chiefest good, which is not to be in Heaven, but to please God, and choose his wil, wil his wil. We meet with God, and suck out a satisfying goodness in him in so doing, this is one end.

But both these are to be attended and neither seper­ated from the other. The wel-working and exercise of our Grace is the end: but that Barely I doubt wil not do it. For no creature can give content to the Soul, but our wel-working is a creature. Therefore with that I added also, A rellish of satisfying goodness, or com­prehending of that goodness, That is, God in his good­ness, by acting upon him, and we communicating from him, al the perfection we are capable of.

We may be said to be like God, and to have his Image, because we have Grace. But we are most like him, and communicate most of al good from him, when we close with him in the act of his Grace. Satisfie me with thy mercy. I shal behold thy Face, and be satisfied. The issue is, If by our beholding of the glory of Christ so immediately, effectually, we receive more of God, are more for God in meeting with him, and sucking out satisfying good from him,

Then the happiness of out being in Heaven is to be­hold the glory of our Lord Christ.

USE, 1. Instruction.

We have here a Cordial against Death. This should make the Saints willing to die, that they may gaze upon the unmovable glory of a Christ, and be made truly and [Page 380]gloriously happy thereby. It was Davids longing from that little glimpse he had once found. Psal. 63.1, 3. My Soul thirsteth &c. That I may see thee, as somtimes I have seen thee. So say thou, I have seen the Lord in his word, when he humbled me; in his promises, when he hath comforted me, in his sacraments when he streng­thened me; Oh that I may once see him, as he is. The glory of that Wisdom, that I may never erre more, the glory of that mercy, that I may never fear, stagger any more, that Grace, that I may never be foiled any more. Thus Job, I know my Redeemer &c. The marriner wil be content to split the Vessel if there be no other way to get to the Haven.

USE. 2. Examin.

Whether we ever knew the Lord aright or no. Whe­ther it be a savor of knowledg, or a Visard of knowledg. If thou hast true sight of the glory of Christ. It wil make thee a heavenly and glorious Christian: It wil make thee like the Christ thou seest in part, and here­after in perfection: then in ful measure, but here in some truth. If the Eye-salve shal be right, it heals the Sore, of the Eye, as wel as recover the sight of it. Otherwise hadst thou al knowledg, couldst thou search al secrets, and yet thy learning and skil left thee as sensual, as care­less as ever, thou hast happily seen the glory of some learning and Wisdom of words but thou never hadst a speculation indeed of the glimpse of the glory of Christ in the reality of it. Isa. 6.5. That Vision of the Prophet, see what a disposition it wrought in him, This sight makes him sit down confounded. This knowledg is like the Sun rising, that scatters al Clouds, Star­light leaves it dark. False light, like lightning, leaves the mind and heart as dark and corrupt as it was be­fore. Eph. 4.18, 19. 1 Joh. 3.6.

USE, 3. Of Direction.

What Price we should put upon the knowledg of Christ, how much desire it, what Indeavor to attain it.

Prize it above Heaven, desire it more than Heaven, in­deavor to attain it rather than Heaven it self; for indeed it is better. There were no glory in Heaven, but that we behold this glory of Christ. Thus Paul desires. Phil. 3.10. This the Saints have counted the peculiar evidence of Gods favor, as Moses. Exod. 33.18.

Its the greatest trade the Saints take up in Heaven; let us then begin Heaven upon Earth; take up our thoughts with that now, upon which we shal gaze through al eternity.

This is the end of al ordinances, the scope of our Praying, Hearing, Preaching, attendance upon al Duties: we preach for this, ye pray for this, That when al the Churches shal meet together we may come to the unity of the faith, and the acknowledgment of the Son of God. It was that Son of God, that pardoned my sin, quieted my conscience, comforted my Soul. And mine also say ye, or els I had perished: and mine also, or I had been everlastingly discouraged. When we shal never cease the seeing, admiring, adoring the glorious perfections of his Son; let us now begin to search after them;

Means are Three.

1. Keep the Conscience convinced, and the heart perswaded, that as al power is given to Christ in Heaven and Earth, so al good that is done to his in spiritual things, and al deliverances for his accomplished, are wrought by him, and he is ready for the relief of his. Act. 2.33. Know assuredly saies Peter, That Christ, whom ye have crucified, him hath God raised, he hath [Page 382]shed down that wh [...]ch ye see. I see him standing at the right hand of the Father. Know ye Devils, I see the glory or that mercy that did rescue me from their rage, els I had been cooped up with you in the chains or dark­ness.

Be it known unto you ye damned creatures, this is the Son of God, the glory of whose conquering Grace hath broke my flinty heart, or els I had burned in Hel with you: that wretched Creature that was proud, and is now humbled, as ye see: he that was estranged from God and Heaven, and is now called, converted, com­forted, Know that Christ hath shed down that Grace ye now see. He hath done there great things.

2. Hold those glorious excellencies unto the Eye of the Soul, that they may never depart away from it, nor the Soul withdraw it self from them, until they leave an impression upon it. Therefore if any thing besides come in the way between the Soul and Christ, or would cal off the Soul, attend it not. If any thing be presented against this to lessen the worth or necessity, hear it not, regard it not. Keep these in thy thoughts. 1 Chro. 9.18. Be in these. 1 Tim. 4.15.

As in infusions, dayly, though easie, Heats leave a Tincture of the vigor and vertue of the Herb, or mettal, behind them

Dayly company keeping is the next way of moulding each into other. When men prohibite al other goods to be brought, so that Chapmen see none beside, then they sel their own.

3. A heart willing and yieldable to give way to those glorious operations of Christ and the dispensati­ons of himself unto the Soul. Prov. 2.10. He doth not work because we stop the way, and would not have him work. Ye wil find generally a loathness and going off from a truth, if you want the good of it, and find [Page 383]not the benefit of it. Jsiah his h [...]art [...]e [...]ed. The [...] is an instruction sealed, when al parts be apr [...]d.

Your Souls refuse comfort, peace, and assurance, unless it be granted on your manner, and therefore God seals it not up in the Soul.

VERSE, 25.26.

Righteous Father, the world doth not know thee but I have known thee, and these know that thou hast sent me. And I have de­clared &c.

THe verse containes the close of our Saviors prayer; wherein he ascends in his thoughts and desires to the utmost top of that heavenly happiness, that can be enjoyed, or in truth begged for the Saints when they shal come to the end of their Hopes. And herein he reserves the best until last, leaves a sweet [...]a [...]ewel and rellish, that he might raise up his own heart, and the hearts of his Dis­ciples to the highest pi [...]ch, not only leads and presents them to the throne of glory, puts them in the armes of [Page 384]his mercy, but leaves them in the bosom, yea lodgeth them in the heart-Blood of his Fatherly love and faith­fulness, which doth not only exceed the very expecta­tion of a Creature, as he came out of Gods hands, and needs look no further than the perfection of Adam and Innocency would carry him into: but swallows up the Soul in everlasting admiration: that he should come so neer unto God, and be received in that indeared affecti­on of a Father, that he is entertained with no less, but the like love, as Jesus Christ hath been beloved of God and the Father of love.

We are then come to the Pinnacle of the perfection of happiness it self, and there seems to be somthing more, & one step higher, than the glorious Grace of Heaven; look we only to the glory of that Grace, that shal be imprinted upon the Saints and perfected in them at that time.

Here we have the Diamond of the Crown of glory even the love of the Father whereby he hath loved Christ himself, and which is better than life it self, or san­ctifying Grace it self; when it is come to the greatest per­fection, as we shal indeavor to speak to it, when we come to that place. Its the last resolution of Pauls confi­dence, and the top of the rock, whereon the Soul rests, Its beyond al gunshot. I am peeswaded &c. That neither Principalities nor powers &c. Shal ever be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ. It was before al these, therefore it cannot be reached by any of these.

In the twenty fifth, and twenty sixth Verses we have two things.

  • 1. A description of the person, to whom the Prayer is made; Righteous Father; an expression not record­ed in al the new Testament beside: nor can I sodainly find it in al the Old. As though it were reserved on purpose for this place. And for this Prayer of our Savior.
  • 2. The Prayer it self, wherein are four Particular. [Page 385]
    • 1. The thing our Savior eyes and desires: in the last words, That the love &c.
    • 2. The Party who intreats in their behalf.
    • 3. The persons for whom; whose worth and excel­lency is here set forth by their effects, and that special Communion, and Communication, or in­tercourse between them and the Father.
      • 1. I know thee.
      • 2. These also know that thou hast sent me.
      • 3. A dis-similitude, and unlike Condi­tion of the wicked; The World doth not know thee.
    • 4. The Means here used, and that which is resolved on, to be improved for this end, that it may be at­tained, which is sought for with such earnestness: I have manifested thy Name, and will manifest it.

Begin we with the Description of the Person, Righ­teous Father.

In the words, our Savior looks at God, and at that in God, which might give him greatest encouragement to seek, and greatest assurance to speed of that, which he did desire from the hand of the Lord.

Righteous.] This is attended in a double Considera­tion, so far as suits the place and purpose in hand. 1. Properly, speaking according to our apprehension, and the practice of the vertue in our ordinary converse betwixt man and man; it's that vertue, whereby we give every one their due: and that is either by way of distri­bution, called distributive Justice, in giving Honor to whom Honor belongs; or of Commutation, in our Contracts and Bargainings, when we make payment ac­cording to the worth and price of things, called Com­mutative Justice; or else Corrective Justice, when in Civil Judicature of Causes and Persons, we respect no mans Person, but the equity and right of the Cause; and give to every Cause his ful due.

Some Needle-headed men, who are sharp, and Ea­gle-sighted [Page 386]in the search of Secrets, they have conceived, and concluded; That this Commutative Justice cannot be attributed to God. For they imagine it would cast some kind of disparagement and imperfection upon the Majesty of the Almighty.

1. That God should be bound, and become a Debtor to the Creature.

2. Where Commutative Justice is, there one may receive somthing from another, as wel as give somthing to another.

With this I wil not now meddle, because it is not the special intent of the place. However, I confess the sub­tilty of the Conceit, wil not easily satisfie my Apprehen­sion. For I see no more disparagement put upon God to be bound by the Goodness of his Nature, than to be bound by his free Prom [...]e. He is Debtor to his own wil in the one, as to his Nature in the other. Nor do I [...]ee what prejudice is done to the Soveraignty of Gods Wil, and absolute Dominion, to say, The goodness of his Will, cannot go cross to his Justice, then it cannot go cross to his infinite Wisdom, and Prudence, which all grant. Besides, Justice is exercised according to the Nature of that Commerce and Intercourse which is be­twixt the Parties with whom it is exercised.

As the Justice of God, may have wrong by the breach of a Rule: so it may receive content and satisfaction equally by the full restoring of a Rule. Though no in­trinsecal hurt can be done to the Essence of God; for in that there is no intercourse of Justice, betwixt the Crea­ture, and Creator. Yet there may be wrong done to the Covenant of God, in which regard Justice only is to be attended, as it is exercised betwixt God and the Creature. If it were a disparagement to God, to re­ceive equal to wrong done; how could the merits of Christ, give equal satisfaction for our sins, and that to the exact Justice of God? wherein the Glory of Gods Justice, is not prejudiced, but advanced. It Justice wil [Page 387]require the manifestation of his Goodness, by the work of the Creature. It's but equal, in case it be wronged in her Commands, to glorifie his Severity in punishing. By some proportion, in case it be pleased, and content, it may reward the work by blessing: Neither doth Ju­stice deprive her self of the Dominion of that which she doth bestow: but in what she bestows, and they receive, in al they are bound to serve, and yield obedience unto Justice.

Besides, by Justice thus to convey a change, deprives God no more of the Dominion of the thing, than to pass away a right by promise.

If it be said, He becomes a Debtor to his own Fideli­ty; so also he becomes Debtor to the Bounty and Good­ness of his own Nature. For it was from Gods Justice that he was made fit to execute, and keep the Covenant; and it was from the goodness of his Nature, he made him so: and therefore is only bound to the goodness of his own Nature, in whatever Covenant he enters with him.

We cannot be profitable to God; as a man is profitable to his Neighbor, to give him somthing he wanted: but we may be profitable in furthering Gods ends, by that which we have received from God. But I wil not med­dle with this.

2, To be righteous therefore, in the Second place, is to be just mour Promises, when we do what we speak. As in our ordinary Language; he is a man that is just in his word, he is a just man of his promise. And thus the Scripture, Psal. 31.1. and 115.1. and 143.11. therefore the Promise is called the Word of his Righte­ousness. Psal. 119.23. In this lost Condition, in which forlorn man is, and in the Covenant of the Gos­pel, in which lies al our Comfort, we have nothing to plead in regard of our selves, but the faithful Word of Gods Promise: but in regard of Christ, I find the Scrip­ture joyns them together, 1 John, 1.9. If we confess our sins, he is faithful, and just to forgive, where we [Page 388]have both joyned. Faithful in regard of his free Pro­mise made to us in Christ: just in regard of that pur­chase, which by Christ hath been laid down, and paid for our sin, and he hath merited by way of just payment, ful satisfaction, and forgiveness of our sin. These two cannot be the same: For the one cannot be put by way of exposition of the other, because then, the more dark should be used to explicate the more cleer; and the im­proper to expound the proper; if Justice should expli­cate what Faithfulness were. So that in a true sense, both are truly attributed to God: but the Second is spe­cially intended in this place. Hence we have two Points.

  • 1 We must in our Prayer look at those ex­cellencies in God from whence we may receive that good we pray for.
  • 2 God in Faithfulness dispenseth his Fa­therly love to his.

To the First.

We must in our Prayer look at those Excel­lencies in God, Point 1. from whence we may re­ceive that good we pray for.

When our Savior would obtain the highest mercy, that the Love of God might dwel in them, he eyes him as a Father; in which Relation there is the dearest and greatest Love of al. He eyes him in his Faithfulness, and there is the freest and surest, and never failing Love.

God was a Father to Adam in Creation, in giving [Page 389]him his Being, as one of his Generation, which was brought out of his Wisdom, Power, and Goodness: but this Love, though it was dear, and the greatest that God extended to any Creature in the World: yet Adam fel from that Estate, and became a Child of Wrath.

But the Faithful look not to the Love of a Father meerly, but to the Love of his Faithfulness, and that wil not fail, not shal they ever fal from it; and there­fore ye shal observe in the Description of our Savior, which is laid forth at large in the first of the Revelation, in the Sum and ful discovery of the excellency of Christ, that the Lord appears, and presents him to each Church in the expression of Excellency, which answered the par­ticular necessity of the Churches Condition.

Smyrna was under great pressures, and the Devil cast some of them into Prison, so that they were in a dying Condition: therefore Christ appears to them as first and last, who was dead, and is alive, Chap. 2.8. and there­fore could ever preserve them, and would recover them from death.

To the Church to Thyatira, because they grew slug­gish, and tolerated the Woman Jezebel to set her Forge­ries to sale, and vent her Follies, and Filth, and Pro­phaness under the name of a Prophetess: therefore Christ appears to that Church, as one that hath Eyes like a flame of Fire, who wil search into al Secrets, verse 18. and Feet of Brass that wil trample al to dust, against whom his indignation proceeds.

Vaunting Laodicea, who mistook her own Estate, and thought she was rich, and yet was poor, verse 17. he presents himself to her, as a faithful and true Witness, verse 14. They bear false Witness of their Condition, but he would give in that which was true.

The Second Point follows now to be attended, which was this: Viz.

God in Faithfulness dispenseth his Fatherly Love to his. Point 2.

That's the aim of our Savior his Expression; not on­ly looks at God, as a righteous, faithful God, but a faith­ful Father, hath a Fatherly Love and Care of his Peo­ple and Children; and he is faithful in the communica­ting, and expessing of his Love to them. He bears a faithful, Fatherly Affection to his Servants.

We shal open two Things:

  • 1. Wherein this Faithfulness, and Fidelity of the Father consists.
  • 2. The Reason why he thus dispenseth his Love.

I. This Fidelity of the Father, consists in Three Things:

  • 1. A full and free engagement of himself; to procure and accomplish the good, and welfare of his People. Undertakes to see al good done for them, that can be de­sired, as needful: al evil removed, which they can fear, as hurtful or dangerous to their Souls. The Father, as I may say, laies al his excellencies, and sufficiency to pawn, that he wil see the Salvation of his shal not mis­carry. As he is said to swear by himself, he cals his God-head, as a Witness to see done what he saies. So, I may say, he doth by Promise, lay his infinite sufficien­cy to pledg; that as Reuben said to Jacob, I wil under­take; thou shalt require him at my hand: So God saies, require what may be needful, or helpful at my hand, I wil answer it. And this God hath left upon Record in his Word, and under his hand, and therefore as the wise man said of him that is become Surety for his Friend; Thou art ensnared, and taken in the words of thy mouth, [Page 391]Prov. 6.2, 3. Deliver thy self when thou art come into the hand of thy Friend. He is now in the hands of the Creditor; It was in his own hand and wil before, if he would have paid, if not, he might have chosen; but he is now in the hand of his Friend, he hath him bound by Promise. This is implied in that Phrase, 2 Tim. 2.13. He is faithful, he cannot deny himself; q. d. If he should deny to do good, he should deny himself; for he hath laid himself to pawn.
  • 2. As a free Engagement, so there must be a full Ac­complishment, and Performance of all that is promised, and which he hath undertaken to see done in the behalf of his, Psal. 119.138. Thy Testimonies are Righte­ous, and very faithful; not failing in the least, nor falling short in the performance of whatever was promi­sed. Lam. 3.23. Great is thy Faithfulness, which pro­vides new mercies every morning, every moment, an­swering to new occasions: therfore it's said, Psal. 36.5. Thy Faithfulness reacheth unto the Clouds; and ther­fore it is noted, that there failed nothing of al those words that God had spoken.
  • 3. There must be as a certain, so an immutable con­tinuance of his Fatherly care, through our dayly course, without any interruption: for he hath undertaken to see us safely arrived, he hath engaged himself, he wil not neglect it, and nothing can hinder it, unless it can out-bid his Power, or over-reach his Wisdom, or out-bid his Mercy; for al stand bound. Psal. 89.33. I will not suffer my Faithfulness to fail: and 119.90. Thy Faithfulness endures through all Generations. Therefore Gen. 28.15. he would not leave him until he had fulfilled al his Goodness.

II. The Reason.

  • 1. Because hereby the Glory of the Riches of his Mercy and Grace, comes to be manifested, yea, magni­fied. [Page 392]When every thing else failed, and was at a loss, God out of his Faithfulness, he undertakes, he recovers, he preserves his in the waies of Life; and it's out of Faithfulness that he gives any, continues and maintains what he gives, succeeds, and gives a Blessing to al means; and out of Faithfulness, over-works al pressures, and hindrances from good. Thou out of Faithfulness hast corrected me: Psal. 119.75. So that al is Grace, Grace, and nothing but Grace. Faithfulness hath an influence into al our waies, walks up and down the World with us. Psal. 89.24. My Faithfulness and Mercy shall be ever with him; yea, verse 2. he wil build up one Mercy upon another, until he bring us to Heaven, and there his Faithfulness shal be established. Therefore the whol Gospel is called a Promise, q.d. that is the Cabinet that keeps al those precious Jewels of Grace and Glory.
  • 2. Hereby also, the Salvation and safety of the Saints, is made sure, and established for ever, Rom. 4.16. It was therefore of Grace, that it might be sure to all the Seed. When Adam had undertaken for al his, to bring them to Life, by his doing and working, we see that he, and his Grace, and Abilities, and Performances came to nothing: he was unfaithful in the Trust. But God hath engaged himself, and his Word is gone out of his Mouth, that he wil not fail David, Psal. 89.35. Hence comes to be a sure Covenant, sure Mercies, sure Peace, Comfort, &c. Surely persevere, and shal un­doubtedly be saved.

USE, 1. Instruction.

Out of Gods Fatherly Love, look for Afflictions, Mi­series, Changes, and Necessities to attend us in our dayly Course; because this is one part of Gods Faithfulness, and according to that he dispenseth his Fatherly Love, Psal. 119.75. I know thy Judgments are right, and [Page 393]thou out of very Faithfulness, hast afflicted me; out of Faithfulness hast disparaged me, hast brought me to great extremities, afflicted me in the world, that thou mightest not condemn me with the world.

The Psalmist accounts he cannot, in a surfet, but Diet: in rankness of Blood, but bleed: in strength of distempers, but purge. Its part of his Faithfulness to be true to his rule, and that's health.

He hath promised, ye shal have Houses and lands with persecution, would ye not have him Faithful? He hath promised he wil do you good: and then he must lead you in the wilderness and prove you, that he may do it. Deut. 8.4, 5. He hath promised the world shal not be your bane, and he wil deliver you from this present evil world. And therefore if he pluck away, if he keep you to a spare Diet, its his Faithfulness. Hebr. 12.9. We have had the Fathers of our Bodies, and they have corrected us: how much more ought we to be subject to the Father of our Spirits that we may live? Its your life that God intends, and his Faithfulness.

USE, 2.

Strong and invincible CONSOLATION, and that is the main use; The truth, which as a mighty stream, issues from al the faithful performances of the Lord. Hebr. 6. That by two Immutables we might have strong consolation. When al failes, Eyes, and heart, and Hopes, yet God wil not suffer his faithful­ness to fail.

This is a bottom to bear our hearts, a rock that is higher than we, and higher than al misery. When thy friends prove false and play fast and loose; It was thou my familiar friend &c. When they cast thee off; as Paul, at my first answer no man stood by me, al men forsook me &c. But God stood by me, when they [Page 394]leave thee, Gods faithfulness and mercy wil never leave thee. Psal. 89.24. When thy flesh and thy heart fails, the Lord wil be the strength of thy heart and thy portion for ever. Ps. 73.26.

In temptation, when the strength fails thee, and Sa­tan hath got the Wind and Hil and Sun upon thee, faith­fulness gives [...]hee strength. 1 Cor. 10.12, 13. No temptation &c. When thy Grace grows feeble, and thou growest behind hand, little good thou dost with al, and little good receivest, wantst life and power, faithfulness wil quicken this, and perfect al. 1 Cor. 1.9.

Nay, when thy faith fails, thou hast dealt falsly in his covenant, broken thy vows, thy promises, been un­faithful under the means and mercy, and hast denied him, faultered in thy profession, as Peter, I know not the man, I know not the rule, the reproof: yet he is faithful, he cannot deny himself. Here thou wilt and thou must smart for it; he wil bring thee by Hell, but yet he wil recover thee. Psal. 89.28. Though thou leave and forsake him, yet he wil not leave thee, but of his faithfulness be mindful, and not forsake thee. Mark how Nehemiah recovers himself upon this board Neh. 9. Thou art a God that keepest covenant and mercy; they rebelled against thee many times, and did evil before thee, but thou in thy manifold mercies forsookest them not, And many times didst deliver them, for thou art a gracious and merciful God, upon this shelf of the boat he stil swims out.

USE, 3. A word of Reproof.

It shews the hainousness of the sin of unbeleef in the Saints departing from God. Who have had a God faithful to them, and yet they not place their faith in him, hath God ever failed? did ye ever seek, ever humble your selves, ever trust in him in vain? why have ye done [Page 395]thus? how unkindly, how unreasonably have ye dealt with him? Ask your Fathers and they wil tel you, ask your own hearts and they can testifie: hath he spoken and not performed? nay hath he not been better than his word, even aboundant in goodness and truth? So Samuel. 1. Sam. 12.7. So God pleads, Jer. 2.5. What Iniquity have your Fathers sound in me, That they are gone far from me &c. Be astonished at this ye Heavens, and be horribly confounded, saith the Lord. Verse, 12, 13.

Thus we have done with the first part observed in this Prayer, The person to whom its directed, Viz. To God as a Righteous Father.

2. The Prayer it self.

The second part comes now into consideration, Viz. The Prayer it self: where digressing from the order of the particulars as they were laid out in the opening of the text, and taking the words as they first come to hand, we shal begin with the description of the parties for whom the Prayer was made: and therein first that dissi­militude and unlike condition that is between the world and them. The World hath not known thee.

1. By WORLD is meant the wicked of the world. I pray not for the world, but for those that thou hast given me out of the world. Verse, 6.9. 1 Joh. 5.19. We know that we are of God, and the whole WORLD liveth in wickedness: Where these two are put in way of opposition; To be of God, to be begotten and called of him, and to be such As lie in Wickedness: they are such as be made up of Worldly Principles, take up their abode in wickedness, and are brought to bed in it.

Because the God of this world rules in them. 2. Cor. 4.4.

Because the Spirit of the world acts them, perverted mutability, whereby they are under the power of the [Page 396]Creature, that carries them along. 1 Cor. 2.12. We have not received the spirit of the world, but the Spirit of God. Because they take content in the things of the world, Mind earthly things. Phil. 3.19. Are Children of the World.

2. These Wicked persons do not know the Father. Know. That is, they have not a real and right con­ceiving of the Father, as in that Faithfulness and Fa­therly affection, wherein he communicates himself to his. For in that special consideration this knowledg is here to be attended, and so restrained. He saith not, nor yet meaneth that they did not know God, or know the Father as God, or his Deity: for it is directly con­trary to the expression and affirmation of the Apostle, touching the Gentiles in the general, look at them in the lump, as they lie in the loynes of lost Adam. Rom. 1.18. They know God, but did not glorifie God, as God: nay God is not only manifest to them, but in them. Verse, 19.

But look at him, as a Father, and in regard of that Faithfulness he expresseth towards his, and then ye have the meaning of our Savior, and the mind of the Spirit of God in the place.

The wicked and ungodly of the world,Doct. they know not the Fatherly Love of God, which he in faithfulness dispenseth to­wards his.

They know him not as a Righteous Father, though they may, and happily do know him, as a God.

This our Savior takes as granted, and gives it as the reason of al that wretched proceeding of the ungodly a­gainst the Saints in al Ages. Joh. 16.3. These things they wil do unto you, because they have not known. [Page 397]the Father, nor me. Joh. 15.12. These things wil they do unto you for my Names sake, because they knew not him that sent me. And this is not only true of those, Who are of meane place and parts, who happily nei­ther had helps to instruct them, nor abilities to improve such means of knowledg, as might lead them to the un­derstanding of the Father: As they spake of the baser sort: This People that know not the Law: A compa­ny of Poor, silly, deluded, sottish Creatures, that never had teaching and training up in the knowledg of the Lord: But our Savior affirmes it of such, who thought their penny good Silver, and prided themselves in the profession & knowledg of the truth, nay Chalenged both interest and acceptance in God as a Father. Joh. 8.54, 55. If I honor my self, my honor is nothing: It is my Father that honoreth me, of whom ye say, that he is your Father. And yet ye have not Known him. q. d. Though ye lift up your heads, and would bear the world in hand, that ye are the only people of the Lord, & stand in such neer relation, & are so dearly affected to him, and so highly esteemed of him, that he is your Father, when in truth, these are but fals Presumpti­ons of your Priviledges, and vaunting of your Pride: for yet to this day ye have not known him: you that are the learned Doctors of the Law you who profess your selves the Guides and Leaders of the people, and to be instru­cters of such, who are ignorant, and therefore should know the mysteries of Godliness, yet ye know not the Father, but I know him.

Object. But you wil say, however this may be gran­ted confessed to be true, of the rude and unlearned multitude, which are marvailous sottish in themselves, and insufficient to search into the knowledg of the per­fections of the Deity. Yet that the profound Schollers, yea Ministers, though wicked and ungodly, yet for time, Standing, studies, mervailous eminent, Dextrous [Page 398]and famous for their skil in al Tongues and Arts: Nay who have Preached both long and much of the Deity and persons, of Christ, and of the special relation be­twixt the Father and Christ, should yet be ignorant of them, how can this suit with reasonable apprehen­sion?

Answer four things.

1. Though the perfections of the Deity may be ap­prehended, by the dictates of our consciences and the creation of the world: yet the discerning of the Trinity of the persons in the unity of the God-Head, is beyond the ability of any of the lost Sons of Adam, being left unto the search, which the light of their own reason wil lead them unto. And because, as the unity of the God-head doth most appear by the works of creation: so the di­stinction of the persons is best perceived by the works of Redemption. Because our natural reason cannot com­pass it; its not sufficient to conceive this. And there­fore ye shal observe when ever either question or ex­pression is presented to any of the wisest of the Heathen, touching Redemption, or resurrection; They look at it as a meer delusion and dream, and cast it a way with scorn. Act. 17.32. When Paul Spake of the resur­rection, some mocked, some wondred, and said, we wil hear thee again of this matter.

2. That God the Father should be the Father of Christ, as God-Man, and in Faithfulness dispense Fatherly love to any of his. It exceeds the reach of al Humane Reason, and had it not been revealed in the Scriptures, it could never have been apprehended by the improvement of the best abilities of men and Angels. 1 Cor. 1.20. When the world in the Wisdom of God knew not God (that is, by the Wisdom that he had left imprinted on the works of creation and providence, they could not know God in Christ, nor the way of his dis­pensation therein. It pleased God the foolishness of [Page 399]Preaching to save them that bel [...]eve: By that which the world cals foolishness. For the Cross of Christ is foolishness to the Grecian, and a stumbling Block to the Jew.

3. Though it doth exceed the reach of reason to find this, or Fathom this, being improved to the highest pitch, Yet after it is revealed and dispensed with plain­ness out of the word, The reason of a carnal man may yield assent thereto, and by force of Argument be con­strained to submit to the convincing Evidence thereof: for its above reason, but not against reason. Its beyond the reach of reason to Fathom, but its not Cross to the rule of right reason, but it may, and wil confess it. For its a staple truth, for ever to be held. There is nothing in the Nature of God, or the actions of God, that can be contrary to the Wisdom of God (for then God should be contrary to himself, which is assuredly blasphemous to think) and certain it is, the rule of right reason is a beam of Gods blessed Wisdom, which he can no more Cross, than in truth he can be Cross or contrary to him­self. Therefore Paul cals it Wisdom in the greatest Eminency. 1 Cor. 2.6.

4. When this Fatherly love and Faithfulness of God is revealed out of the Scripture, though the judg­ment of a carnal man may confess the truth, yet he can­not conceive it. He may be constrained to yield to the evidence of Argument which he cannot gainsay, yet the reality and spiritualness of that divine good that is there­in couched, he cannot comprehend.

The Sum in short is this.

When the love and Faithfulness of God is in the Scriptures revealed, or out of the experience of the faithful recorded in Books, or wrightings, or by relati­on; There be these three things carefully to be consi­dered, and as warily to be distinguished.

  • 1. There is the sound of the word, syllable, and sentences whereby they are expressed.
  • [Page 400]2. There is Reason, and Argument which is conveyed by those words, Arguments cloathed with Language and Speech: a mans Apprehensions walk abroad in a mans Expressions.
  • 3. There is the reality of that Spiritual, and Divine Good and Truth, that lies couched, and contained within that Reason, as a precious Diamond in a curious Cabinet.

A carnal man may hear the sound of the words, under­stand the Grammer Congruity and signification: His Judgment may see the Evidence of the Argument, and force of Reason, which concludes beyond gain-saying, what is there disputed.

And yet the reality, and Spiritualness of that Divine Good never apprehended. Psal. 25.14. The Secret of the Lord, is with them that fear him, and he will teach, &c. There be Secrets in Praying, Secrets in Preaching, and there be Secrets in al the Truths, Di­vine, and Mysterious, that are spoken and preached: and a man may speak of the Truths, and preach of them, and yet never know those Secrets he preacheth. As a man may preach the Word, and alledg the Scriptures, and there be Spiritual Mysteries which are therein con­tained, that happily he never knew, though he published the Word, and Reasons, that did convey them to the hea­ring of others, when God is pleased to work thereby. There be in the Several Mettals, and Herbs, three things which are secretly inclosed in the bowels of the Mettals; a Salt, an Oyl, and a special Soveraign Water, which Al­chymists, that can dissolve, and unbowel the Mettals, can bring out: Another man happily hath more Gold, Sil­ver, A timony, take whatever other Mettal you wil, and yet he shal never see those Secrets, never know them, nor ever have the use of them, though he see the view, & Met­tals dayly: But he that is a skilful Alchymist, he can tel how by his Distillation, to find them, & by his Art, to use them. So here: There be in the Profession of God, and his Truth, special Secrets of this Fatherly: Love, and [Page 401]Faithfulness, which the Saints by beleeving, as by Spiri­tual Chymistry, can see, & discern, & have the use, & find the comfort of: Whereas others, who profess as much, and can speak a [...] freely, and it may be, more freely, never come to find really, or truly to discern what they speak. As Job; I have heard of thee by the Ear, but now mine Eye hath seen. To speak of God by hear-say, but to find God making himself real, and to see him as he is, though not in Perfection, yet in truth, and in some kind of proportion: and therefore in effectual Calling and Con­version, it's said, That the Saints are turned from dark­ness, to light, and from the power of Satan, unto God. Sin seems another thing than ever: Gods Love and Faithfulness, carry an amazing kind of astonishment, that the sinner wonders where he hath been. Now he can see a God in the World, and the wonders of his God like Love and Mercy: al which were in the dark, and he in the dark before; al came by report and relation: now he sees them real, and knows what it is to have Father­ly, pardoning Mercy; and indeed knows, and confesses, he never knew what God meant, or Sin meant.

There is one only Objection that I know, that is a little to be removed, which carries some kind of difficul­ty at the first appearance. John, 7.27. We know (say the Pharisees, when they would not entertain Christ as the Messias) this man, whence he is; but when Christ cometh, no man knoweth whence he is. They had respect to that of Micah, 5.2, 3. Whose go­ings have been from ever-lasting. To which Speech, Jesus replied, Ye both know me, and from whence I am: and I am not come of my self, but he that sent me, is true (that is, Faithful) whom ye know not. Where­as our Savior professeth, that they [...]ever knew him, nor his Father, John 16.3. And again, if they had seen him, they had seen his Father; and yet now both these seem to be contradicted.

Answ. Our Savior is to be attended in a double Respect.

  • 1. As Man; and so they spake of him: We know whence he is: Is not this Jesus, the Son of Joseph, whose Father and Mother we know? John, 6.42.
  • 2. As the Son of God, by eternal Generation; and as God and Man, by Hypostatical Ʋnion, who was appointed by God, and in his time, sent out from the Father, upon the great work of Redemption.

He gran [...]s, they knew him as a Man: But as sent from the Father, as God-man, upon the great work of Medi­ation, They neither knew the Father, as sending; nor him, as sent.


1. Gods own Secrets must, and can be discerned by Gods own Spirit, and the Spiritual Light from thence received.

There be some of Gods ordinary Courtesies which he extends in common to al Creatures; his Rain fals, his Sun shines upon good and bad. He gives Life, and Breath, and Being to al things, Acts, 17. Al things are at his finding, and the eyes of al things look to him, and he fils every living thing with his Goodness.

There be also peculiar, and choyce Favors, which he hath reserved for his Secret Ones, in the secret Convey­ances of his Providences, which none know but his Fa­vorites. The deep things of God, as Paul, 1 Cor. 2.10. The Spirit only searcheth these deep things. His everlasting Mercy, and Fatherly Faithfulness in Christ. These are deep things; and as no man knows what is in man, but the Spirit of man: so no man knows the things of God, but the Spirit of God.

And it's the Answer to that Question, 1 Cor. 2. and last, Who hath known the mind of the Lord? q. d. None can pry into the Ark of his Privy Counsel, which [Page 403]hath been from everlasting: and therefore he ads, We have the mind of Christ. He that hath Christs mind, may know Gods mind, for he is Privy to it. Luke 10.21. I thank thee, O Father, Lord of Heaven and Earth, that thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto Babes; even so, O Father, because it seemed good in thy sight: no man knows who the Father is, but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him. It must be from the Revela­tion of Christ, that any come to the right knowledg of the Father, John, 1.18. No man hath seen God at any time; but the only begotten Son, who came out of the Bosom of the Father, he hath revealed him, that is, those Bosom Affections of his Fatherly Love.

2. Our Apprehensions, and Conceivings of God, hold proportion with his Dispensations of himself to us. There must be ever some print of some operation and impression of his Excellencies, or Relation left upon us, before any thing can be discerned: For he dwells in the Light that no Creature can attain unto: and to pry in­to his Secrets, which he hath reserved in his own Bosom, as indeed we should not (Secret things belong to the Lord, but things revealed, to us) so in truth, we can­not reach them, they are far beyond the scantling of our shallow Conceits.

Now the expressions which God leaves of his Father­ly Love and Faithfulness, are sound no where, but in the hearts of his, whom he cals unto himself: Them he takes into the Bosom of his Love: To them he commu­nicates these Bosom Secrets, the Foot-steps whereof are to be found no where upon Earth, but in the Souls of the Faithful: Therefore they only can see the Print of them, they only come to know them.

The great Characters of Gods Power, Wisdom, and Bounty, are left instamped, and engraven upon each Creature; and therefore they may be seen of al, and read of al, and so known.

But that he should set his heart upon any lost Son of Adam an his Christ▪ and draw him into special, inti­mate, and spiritual Communion with himself through his Son; this is only to be found recorded in the Consci­ences, whom he hath called out of the World.

These are the unknown yernings of the Bowels of a Father, which can be owned by none, but such who are his own, Rev. 2. He gives a new Name, which no man knows, but he that hath it, unknown Benevolence, and unknown Complacency of a Fathers Bowels.

USE, 1. Of Instruction.

1. Therefore it is not safe to lean to the Counsel, or be led by the Opinion of Carnal men, touching the doubts we have, or difficulties we find, concerning the Love of God unto our souls, and his Faithfulness in the performance of his gracious Promises. Alas, they know nothing of those things, how shal they be able to make us know them? They understood nothing themselves, and how shal they reach others? Is any so weak, and sil­ly, that he would go to a blind man, to make him judg of Colors? or a deaf man of Sounds? or he that never knew the way, to be a Guide, to lead him the way? un­less he were resolved to miss his way, and end also. True indeed, they may somtimes speak things by hear­say; but to speak things from grounded Knowledg and Experience, they cannot, because they have none.

2. Hence it's plain, That the meanest Saint, and most ignorant, doth yet know more of Gods Fatherly Love, and is better acquainted with the Faithful Per­formance of his Promises, than the most learned, and profound Doctors of the World: Because they know the Father, and are privy to his Secrets, and have his Bo­som Counsels communicated to them, by the Lord Christ, which are Riddles, and Wonders, and Mysteries to the whol World, and to the Princes thereof.

USE, 2. Of Terror.

It discovers the dreadful Estate, and miserable Con­dition of al wicked men, the Children and Darlings of the World, who take content in it, and give content to it. The World, it is likely, may lay you in her Bosom, for the World wil love her own: but ye be far enough from the Love of the Father, as ye be far from the knowledg of him. Hence a Sea of Misery breaks in up­on thee, able to over-whelm thy Soul irrecoverably. If it can be once said, Thou knowest not the Father, there is enough said to sink thy heart in everlasting dis­couragement. In this Estate thou canst expect no good, for thon canst receive no good from the hand of the Lord, though he be the Father of Mercies, and God of al Con­solation: There is none for thee, not one Blessing nor Comfort. For if God communicate any thing of him­self unto the Sons of Men, it is by his Spirit, whose Office it is, To lead them into all Truth, John 16.13. and to seal them up in the Truth, unto the day of Re­demption, Eph. 4. Al that is the Fathers, is Christs, and the Spirit takes of Christs, and so of the Fathers, and gives it unto such, for whom it is appointed, John, 16.15.

But it's the depth of thy Misery, thou canst not re­ceive the Spirit.

1. Thou canst receive nothing of the Father, though it were given thee, John, 14.17. I will send the Com­forter, whom the World cannot receive, because it doth not see, nor know him. This is thy Condition right: Thou canst not see, nor know the Spirit, and conse­quently, nor the Father: therefore not receive him, and therefore receive no good. The Spirit wil not take the Mercy of a Father to pardon thee; the Love of the Father to support; the Peace of the Father to quicken; Grace of a Father to purge, and sanctifie thy corrupt [Page 406]heart. The holy Spirit, would take of Christs, and so of the Fathers, and give to thee: But thou art a world­ly, wicked wretch, and thou canst not receive the Spirit, nor Christ, nor Mercy, nor Love, if thou had'st them laid before thee.

2. And as thou canst receive no good from the Fa­ther, so thou canst perform no good Duty to him, that may find acceptance with him, or a blessing from him. Thou knowest not the Father, therefore thou canst not love him, nor fear, nor honor, nor obey him. That which the Eye sees not, the Mind knows not, the Heart affects not, fears not, prizeth not at al, nor performs the least Duty to him; because thou fallest short in thy Apprehensions wholly of him. Nay, mark what I say, Thou did'st never pray to this Father of Christ, and of al compassion in him. If I wil pray with my Tongue, I wil pray with my Understanding also, saies the Apostle. Upon that Father thou did'st never cal, that thou did'st never know to this day. It was a Fancy of thine own devising, it was not the Father of Christ, and thine in him thou called'st upon: For thou could'st not seek to him, that thou could'st never know to this day. Happily thou hast learned the Lecture without Book, and canst speak the words by rote: but thou wilt not say, speaking words argues the reality of knowledg. Parrots can prattle words, which out of Custom they have heard, but understand not the things. Therefore it's an Idol of thine own making thou petitionest unto, not the true God, and Father of Mercy: and therefore thou loseft al thy Prayers, and Performances, they ne­ver come neerer to God. As thou knowest no [...] him; he wil profess to thee at that day, Depart from me, ye wicked, I know you not: I own not either Persons, or Prayers, or Duties: Ye did not call upon me, when ye bowled upon your beds. When the Dog is hanged up­on the pale, Nature teacheth him to howl for help and re­lease out of misery, though he hath neither Reason, nor [Page 407]Understanding to know what that is, which must help. So Nature teacheth, and misery forces to howl out.

3. Thou layest thy self open to the in-rode of al Temptations and Corruptions, that either the occasion from without, or distempers from within, shal lead thee into; to turn desperate Opposer of the Truth, Hater and bloody Persecutor of Gods People. Thou know­est not God, and thou knowest not what thou dost a­gainst him, or his People. John 16.2, 3.

4. Carnal Men can have no discerning, or right Judg­ment of a Spiritual Condition, either their own, or o­thers. The Devil may cozen thee with Colors; and thou mayest delude thy self with Dreams, prop up thy heart with vain hopes. But it's certain; where there is no knowledg, but ignorance, there can be no evidence, or certainty. Thou knowest not the Father. nor his Love, nor Mercy, nor Faithfulness in his Promises; and therefore canst have no assurance of his acceptance of thee.

Object. But I hope I am somwhat, and have som­what more than the World.

Answ. Try it thus: The whol World lies in wic­kedness, is brought to bed, sits at ease in some sinful lusts, out of which they would not be removed. So the yong man: If thou lie, or lodg in a distemper, takest up thy rest therein; as Beetles, though they fly abroad, yet logd last in a Dunghil; know, thou art one of the World, and shalt perish with the World. That they might all be damned, which love not the Truth, but have pleasure in unrighteousness. 2. Thes. 2.12.

Thus we have seen what the Condition of the World is, as touching their Ignorance of the Father, They know him not.

There is yet somthing further held out in the Words, as they are set in way of opposition to our Savior, They do not know, but I do know, and these know.

The Disposition,Doct. and Carriage of our Sa­vior, and the Saints, towards God, is wholly cross to the world.

This the Reason, and frame of the Words, fully lay open unto us at the first view. And hence it is, that they are set forth unto us by way of Contradiction, which carry the Contrariety of the largest extent that can be. Contradiction divides the whol breadth of being or enti­ty, al come within the compass of one of the sides. The World hath not known thee, I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me.

Knowledg it is, that makes way for the allowance, and choyce of the heart; for the stirring and moving of the Affections; for the exercise, and putting forth of al such Operations, that issue from them, and the whol man. Therefore if they do not know him, then not chuse him, love him, fear him, desire, delight in him, serve him, or seek his Glory in the least measure. And hence there is a contrariety betwixt Christ, Christians, and the World, in the whol compass, and largest extent that can be conceived, either in disposition, or action. And this is made the Evidence, and Ground why the World hath nothing to do with God, nor Spirit, in the things of Grace, John 14.17. The Comforter, the World can­not receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him. And therefore it is, the Scripture expresseth the most perfect, and absolute opposition that can be, when it would discover the distance betwixt Christ and his, and the world, 1 Cor. 3.19. The wisdom of the world, is foolishness with God. It's not the weakness, and the [Page 409]occasional mistakes of the World, or somthing that is most erronious in the world: But the very wisdom of the world, what is it at the best, or it may seem to be in the highest stream of worth, if any worth be in it, that is not only foolish, mingled, mixed, or accompanied with somthing that was foolish, may be a little blended, or blemished with folly: but it is foolishness in the Abstract.

The best that is in the world, is the worst that can be conceived in the way of God. So James takes it for a thing confessed, and notorious, Chap. 4.4. Know ye not, ye Adulterers, and Adulteresses, that the Friend­ship of the World, it is Enmity against God? Al of it is altogether in the highest strain of Opposition against the Lord. This is that the Apostle John peremptorily affirms, and that with as much indignation and distra­ction, as can be, 1 John 5.19. We are of God, but the whol world lies in wickedness. It is not only wicked, or some of it may be so conceived, but the whol of it is wickedness, and it lies in it. The whol Frame, Dispo­sition, yea, the very Constitution of the Circuit of the World, is setled upon such Lees: and therefore the same Apostle undeniably infers it, Chap. 2.15. Love not the World, &c, for if any man love the world; these are at that deadly feud, that they cannot stand together, they destroy each other. If any man, be he what he wil, you ever find it true in al persons, at al times; the Love of the Father is not in him.

REASONS, are three.

1. Consider the highest Fountain, and first author from whence their dispositions and operations do arise, both in our Savior, in the Saints, in the World, and in the Wicked. There ye shal perceive the opposition to be in the highest strain, that can come within the reach of reason, or indeed can be in the reality of truth.

Hither our Savior looks, when he would discover the [Page 410]rock, out of which they were hewn, and the first Pede­gree of that profaneness and Wickedness which over­flowes in the hearts and lives of the ungodly. Joh. 8.38. When he would lead the wicked Jews to the Fountain, whence their cruelty and murderous carriage did proceed, he points at it with the Finger. I speak that which I have seen with my Father: and ye do that which ye have seen with your Father. They An­swer Abraham is our Father. Jesus saith unto them: If ye were Abrahams Children ye would do Abrahams works; but ye seek to kill me, and this did not Abraham. But ye do the deeds of their Father. They could not conceive what he meant: And therefore stil reply; We are not born of Fornication, we have one Father, even God: Our Savior again returnes an undeniable evidence. If ye were of God, ye would love me for I came from God, nor came I of my self, but God sent me. But be­cause al these were Riddles: he speaks out, and shews them the Root of their wretchedness. Verse, 44. Ye are of your Father the Devil: and the lusts of your Father ye wil do; He was a murderer, and abode not in the truth: and what he saies of one, he saies of al sins in the like case. When he speaks a lie, he speaks of his own, for he is the Father of lies.

As God is the first cause of truth and goodness, and from his fulness al the beams and streams of truth are derived to any who share therein: So Satan is the first cause of falshood and wickedness, and therefore called. The Wicked one; And from him al wickedness is deriv­ed. And hence ungodly men are called The Seed of the Serpent. Gen. 3.15. They are said to be of that Wicked one. 1 Joh. 3.11. Cain was of that Wicked one; Put in way of opposition, To be born of God. This I take to be the meaning of those Phrases and texts, which hence receive their explication, as belonging I conceive, properly to this place. Joh. 8.23. When our Savior would shew the distance and great disagree­ment [Page 411]between himself and the wretched and ungodly Jews, he speaks, Ye are from beneath, I am from above. Ye are of this world, I am not of this world. Joh. 17.14. I have given them thy word, and the world hath hated them, because they are not of this world, even as I am not of this world. Here we have the Wel-head of hatred, because they are not of the world. And we see that this agrees to Christ, as to them, and to them, by means of Christ; that as he speaks els where. Joh. 8.28. He can do nothing, but what he sees his Fa­ther do. Joh. 14.10. The words that I speak, I speak not of my self, but the Father that dwelleth in me, As the first person dwels in the second, he is thus from the Father, and works from the Father. So his Saints and faithful are of and from the Father, by him. Where­as the wicked, They are of the world. That is, their dispositions which are corrupt, they issue firstly from Sa [...]an, who cast's in his Seed of rebellion into their hearts, according to which they are framed. And upon this ground, he is called the God of the world. As he is firstly evil and cannot but be evil, and al evil is from him, that is in the world. For by his wickedness, al the world and wicked comes to be tainted, and by the leaven of his wickedness, defiled. Their minds, so far as erronious, are made up of his delusions. Their hearts, as they are stuborne and ungodly, are made up of his rebellions.

2. Consider the next immediate cause, by which they are acted, this also wil evidence the strength and distance of their opposition, and that in the greatest extremity. And this you shal find most pregnantly. 1 Cor. 2.12. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world but the Spirit, which is of God, that we might know the things, that are graciously given us of God. So that there is a spirit of the world, which blinds mens minds; and minds which the light of the glory of God, in the face of Jesus Christ, cannot shine upon them, nor the [Page 412]power of any savory truth or good come neer them, or work upon them; but they stop the passage against al▪ do most desperately and resolutely oppose al. And that is perverted mutability set on, or set a going by the provoking and cursing power of the Law, the malignity of Satan, having leave, and somtime command from God, to wind up the wickedness of mens spirits to the highest strain of the activity of evil.

When God said, who wil go and deceive Ahab, Sa­tan answers, I wil. The Lord asks, how? I wil, saies he, Be a lying Spirit in the mouth of the fals Prophets. q. d. It was in his power, if God would give leave, to act their minds and Tongues, as one man, to speak and perswade unto deceiptful waies, which would un­doubtedly bring to ruin. And this is the meaning of those two Phrases. Eph. 2.2. Men are said to walk according to the course of the world: one Spirit and guise in them al. If it be asked, what that is, he adds, According to the Prince of the Air, the Spirit, that now worketh &c. When the Prince of the Air, by his impulsions and suggestions draws out the distempers of the ungodly to the utmost activity. And this is noted in the next words, They fulfilled the wils of the Flesh and of the mind, what a corrupt heart and Vain Head would carry a man unto. He must needs go, whom the Devil drives. This is called the wil of the Gentiles, that is, what men, left to the corruption of their Natures, would wil.

Contrarily, The Holy Ghost takes ful possession of our Savior, and from Christ, dwels in the hearts of his Saints, by which they are strengthened, Eph. 3.16. Strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man. So that there is,

  • 1. The inner man, which is Grace.
  • 2. Strengthened in this.
  • 3. By the might of his Spi­rit.

So, led by the Spirit, Rom. 8.15. yea, not only strengthen, and lead, but mightily, and actively works in his, when they are quickened to work the Works of [Page 413]God, Col. 1. last; I strove, but it is according to the working of Christ, and that is mightily: therefore Stephen said, They could not resist the Spirit by which he spake, Acts, 6. As the Prince of Darkness by his Impulsions, draws out the Activity of Corruption in the strength of it; So the Prince of Light and Grace, the Lord Christ, is greater than he that is in the World, and carries the Faithful by an invincible Power.

3. Look at them in the main ends at which they aim, in al their Operations and Proceedings. Our Savior came not to do his own wil, or seek his own; but to do the wil, and seek the Glory of the Father. Therefore the Scope of his whol Work, it is, to break the Head of the Serpent, Gen. 3.15. To destroy the works of the Devil, 1 John, 3.8. To deliver from the present evil world, Gal. 1.4. And al the Saints are of the same Heart, fol­low his Colors, and Command. When the Devil, and the World; the Prince of this World, and the Children of this World, they set themselves in al their Contrive­ments, plottings, practices, to destroy the Glory of God, the Kingdom of God and Christ; and set up the King­dom of darkness, and wickedness, in the minds and hearts of men, Rev. 12.7. Michael, and his Angels: the Dragon, and his Angels

USE, 1. Of Instruction.

1. Hence there is no reconciliation between such as be of the World, and such as be of God, to be hoped for; between the Worldlings, and those that are truly Chri­stians: It's as possible to make Heaven and Earth meet, Fire and Water, Light and Darkness, Christ and Be­lial accord together; Because these are Contraries, their very Being and Constitution is Dissen [...]ion; and therefore they must cease to be, if they cease to oppose, and seek the good and preservation, each of other.

Let the ungodly, for their own ends, and to serve their [Page 414]own turns, profess never so fair, promise never so much, pretend never so much Love and Faithfulness, and seem also somwhat seriously to endeavor to ingratiate them­selves into the hearts of the Godly: Be they never so neer in acquaintance, and familiarity with them: Be they for the present, never so studious, and laborious in al proceedings to promote their good. It's certain, their distempers are but restrained, and the malignity of their Nature curbed, and confined for the while: Let but occasion suit, and temptation be offered, and they wil be as deadly Enemies, nay, most fierce in their malice, and out-rage, as they have been friendly in appearance in former times. None more inward with David, than Achitophel, while opportunity served to bring a­bout his own Honor, by that acceptance he had with Da­vid. It was thou my familiar friend, we took sweet Counsel together, and went up to the House of God to­gether also: complied in al occasions, temporal, spiritu­al, were endeared each to other, bore each other in their very Bosoms: But no sooner is Conspiracy stirred, and Rebellion raised by Abshalom, that was likely to carry it; but Achitophel, he forsakes his Colors, forgets al former Engagements, becomes the deadliest Enemy of the most inward, and endeared Friend, as formerly he did pretend. Judas trained up under the Wing of Christ, but he had a worldly heart; and when the time served, he betray'd his Master for it. Never therefore, look what men pretend, but look what they are: If he be of the World, and Friend to it, know assuredly, he wil be an Enemy to God. And therefore, it checks the delu­ded Conceits, and misguided Apprehensions of some of Gods own, that are Novices in Religion, who are apt to conclude, It's want of Prudence, and Christian Mode­ration, Humility, and sweetness of Carriage, that they do not win every man, even the wicked, and such as be worldly, and Carnal; that they might have their Ap­probation, their Love, and Affections, as they list enlar­ged. [Page 415]Oh! men are not prudent, they do not so wisely carry themselves in that courteous manner as they should; they might win al, and have every mans good word. If a man wil not lay aside his Grace and Holi­ness, let him walk as prudently, and melt into kindness and Courtesie; the World wil be cross to him, and he to it: and he must conclude, he shal find contention and opposition. Al his Policy wil not work his Peace. It's folly to expect, and it's madness to promise it, That Reconciliations, and Contradictions should meet. Who walked in greater Prudence and Innocency, than our Sa­vior; beyond the exception of Envy it self: and yet he was not beyond Opposition, and that most fierce, which he found in the World.

2. We must not judg the worse of mens Persons and Profession, because of that universal opposition they find abroad. It's the portion of Christ, and that which al those that are like him, must expect. It was the Sect of the Saints, and such as followed the Rule of the Lord, of whom they confessed, as a thing commonly known. This Sect is spoken against, every where, and yet no Sect sincere but that, Acts, 28.21. Al men persecuted, and spake evil of such, of whom the Word, and our Sa­vior speaks Blessedness: Blessed are ye, when all men persecute you, and speak evil of you, for my Names sake, Matth. 5.10. They may as justly, and reasonably challenge Gods Name guilty, and blame-worthy, as those who profess it, because that is most of al opposed, and condemned, when men are reviled for that. Therefore it is a shallow, and mis-guided Conceit of some who are ignorant, to make such Inferences. Certainly, al is not right, there is some more than ordinary failings in his way, a shrewd suspicion his course is faulty, else how comes it he should be opposed, and spoken against by so many, so universally. The World is up in Arms against him. So it was against Patriarchs, Prophets, Disciples, and Christ. Therefore the Lord hates the World, praies [Page 416]not for the World, condemns the World. It was no more, but what Christ found, and those who are most like him shal.

3. Saving Conversion wil break the dearest Friend­ship, and neerest Relation in the world, amongst those that are of the world.

Because it sets men in greatest opposition, and cross­ness one to another. It cals men into Light, and there­fore darkness cannot accord with it. It makes men Righ­teous, and therfore Unrighteousness cannot agree there­with. Thus Christ is said to come into the world, to set the Mother-in-Law, against the Daughter-in-Law, The Father against the Son, a mans Enemies shal be those of his own House. His saving Grace sets them in grea­test opposition, and contrariety; and therefore must oc­casion the greatest contention amongst them. Christ puts Enmity, he laies the Siege, and none can raise it.

USE, 2. Of Examination, and Tryal.

This gives in sad Evidence against those who are Neu­ters in Religion: Such are discovered by the former Do­ctrine to have no Religion, nor Truth at al in them. Such as can plough with an Ox, and an Ass. Your Linsey-woolsey men, who can take the color of any Company, and occasion; with the Saints they can seem such; and with the world, they wil be such as they are: Can serve Time and Tide; wil be of any side, provided they may be of the safe side. As Neutral Cities in time of VVar, they are content to pay to both Armies, that they may not be spoiled with either. They are content to favor the world, that they may not be persecuted; yet they would not oppose Religion, lest they should be just­ly condemned of gross wickedness. But carry fire in one hand, they would not be counted prophane, but honest: and yet water in the other hand, they would not be con­ceived too strict. VVhen indeed there be but two [Page 417]Kingdomes, thou must be in one, either in darkness or in light. The world is up in Armes, and there be but two sides, and thou must take the one. He that ga­thers not, scatters. Thou canst not serve two Masters: Be Follower to two Commanders. If Christ be God, follow him: If the world be God, follow it. But how shal we know?

1. Observe what affection the world, and worldly men beare to thee. However happily there is not so fair and ful and free familiarity: yet if their hearts can take contentment and suite, and soder secretly with thee, Certainly they sent and savor somthing like themselves, or els they would never love it. Joh. 15.19. The world loves her own: And if it love thee, assuredly it owns thee, as one of hers really, however thy profession carries another appearance to men, to whom thou canst conform, and with whom thou canst comply.

Why, say your companions, such a one a Puritan? Tush; he may and can comply with his godly Brethren, for to please them: but he is a good fellow: If time, place, and company fit him. But a man sound at heart, at core, they cannot indure his company, nay not abide his Name.

As with the Stomach that is chollerick: we can judg the good of the Physick, by the working of the Stomach, if it can receive and digest it, that it stirr not: we conclude its not right Rhubarb, but a Dock-root, it stirs not the humor, especially when the Body is so fit to be wrought upon.

2. Consider how thy heart can secretly suit with worldly ones. He is known by his companion, that cannot be known by his own course and practise in private. Because, like wil to like. Birds of a Feather wil flock and fly together. As here in New-England, The color of some Birds is very strange, by reason of the Climate, hearts and colds: and that causes some wholly to differ from other. Yet if we see them flock and mate [Page 418]commonly together, we conclude, it is a Starling, not a Black-Bird, she keeps with such: though her color and Feathers be other, yet her Nature and kind is the same. 1 Joh. 4.5. They are of the world, and the world hears them. When a man can hug and harbor a varlet, a scummy wretch, that is not fit to sit among the Dogs of a mans Table; and a wise holy-hearted man would take the windy side; its certain such a one is a worldly wretch. Away from me ye wicked. Psal. 6.8. The wicked is an abomination to the Righteous. Prov. 29.27.

3. Observe whence the root and rise of thy dispositi­on or thy actions come. Canst thou say as Christ? I do nothing, but what I see the Father do. The words I speak, they are not mine. Canst thou say so? The words I speak, the works I do, they are not mine, but Christs?

O Righteous Father, the world hath not known thee, but I have known thee &c.

THis verse being a further discovery and description of the parties for whom our Savior Christ prayed in the foregoing 24. Verse. That they might be with him, and see, and so injoy his glory in Heaven.

Each part of the description carries a secret kind of constraining force, to set home the former conclusion, and provoke the Lord to the grant of his Prayer, and that Priviledg, unto the Faithful, that they might see the glory of Christ.

1. The world knows not the Father nor yet the Son: and therefore they have, as no Title to it, so no ability to Fathom it, nor hearts to take delight therein, or to promote the praise thereof.

2. Our Savior he knows the Father, the depth of that Fatherly affection of his, and that unconceivable glory, which he hath, and wil also communicate to him: And his Saints also know that he was sent by the Fa­ther, on that Ambassage of life, and for the accomplish­ment of that great work of Salvation, by which, as the highest pitch of glory, might be possessed by himself; so also purchased for them. And therefore as he is worthy to obtain this of the Father; so they also fit to injoy it, and to advance the glory of the Father, and him in it.

3. That he hath manifested, and wil manifest yet further the name of that Fatherly love, the glory of that Grace, and mercy, and saving Redemption by him pro­vided, and al to this end, that Christ might be in them. And Gods love manifested in them and by them, sharing and injoying the glory that Christ should possess, and that they should be spectators and admirers of for ever. If now the world neither knew the Father, nor therefore could love or honor him, nor his Son: It was not fit they should be with Christ, or see the glory of Christ, given him out of his Fathers love.

But if Christ knew the Father, and his Fatherly love, and that he was sent on purpose upon this Ambassage: and being sent for this, did and doth indeavor this, and that for this end, that Christ and that Fatherly love might be in them, and the Saints know al this: Then he is sit to ask and obtain this mercy: they fit to receive it, and they shal glorifie God herein, and he attain his glory, while he is pleased thus to grant the Prayer of our Savior, and to glorifie him and them.

We have opened and finished that part of the descrip­on of the parties which was laid down by way of dissi­militude, [Page 420]both, as the world, are considered in themselves, in regard of the ignorance they have of God: and as by way of dissimilitude they stand in reference, com­parison, and consideration with our Savior and his dis­ciples.

We are now come to inquire the other parts of the description of the partyes, for whom the Prayer is made, whose worth and excellency is see forth by their effects

  • 1. I know thee.
  • 2. These also know that thou hast sent me;

And here with we shal take in the second gen­eral, to wit the person who doth pray: intimated in the words where we have two points.

1. From these words.

— I know thee.

The Lord Christ hath the knowledg of the Father in a peculiar manner.Doct.

I say the knowledg of the Father, for that is constant­ly to be carried along with us, in our consideration, and to be kept in our Eye, that we may keep to the scope of the place and aime of our Savior in his Prayer and ex­pression.

For he looks at him, as we have shewed, as a righte­ous Father, such a one as doth dispense his Fatherly affection in Faithfulness unto his. And therefore those of the world, upon whom his Fatherly affection was never set: nor were they within the compass of the Covenant of his Grace, had no interest therein, to whom his Faithfulness and truth was never ingaged, and therefore they could challenge nothing, nor yet was he [...]ound to accomplish any thing for their spiritual and eternal good; And therefore if our Savior had prayed for them, that they should have been in Heaven, and have seen his glory, he had prayed for that, which the [Page 421]Father was not bound to grant in Faithfulness, nor were they fit to injoy. For they know not that Fa­therly love and affection of his which moved him to give Christ that glory: nor could they be affected with it, nor receive the good of it.

But He, who knew the Father, he Prayes for this Favor: And he Prayes for them also, who have known both the Father and him, in their conjoint purpose: The one, that is, the Father appointing and sending: The other, Viz. The Son, coming upon that commission of love and life for the good of his, which they knew, and in which they rejoyce.

That Christ, who was in the commission to work this, and they for whom it was wrought, and knew it, have an interest in it, and take content to injoy it: That such persons should Beg for such Priviledges, From such a Father, whose heart is towards them, and their minds and hearts towards him and his Fatherly affection: This must of necessity be of great power to prevail with so righteous a Father to hear and grant, therefore we must hold it to this point and respect. Christ knows him as a righteous Father. The Lord Christ hath the knowledg of the Father, and his love and Faithfulness in an espe­cial manner. Take a place or two which wil give un­deniable testimony to this truth. Math. 11.25. No man knows the Father, but the Son, and he to whom the Son wil reveal him. Joh. 1.18. No man hath seen the Father at any time, but the only begotten Son, who was in the Bosom of the Father: He saw al his Bosom secrets, and was fully acquainted with Gods heart and counsels, he hath revealed them unto us. And therefore the Apostle issues al here: speaking con­cerning the deep things of God. The Spirit searcheth the deep things of God, that is of the Father; but how come we to rellish either the things of the Father or Spir­it? who hath known the mind of God? Why, we have Christs mind, and he knows the Fathers mind. And [Page 422]our Savior professeth as much touching this expression. Joh. 8 [...]38. Ye speak the things that ye have seen with your Father: and I speak the things that I have seen with my Father.

Here we shal open three things.

  • 1. How Christ as Second Person is said to kn [...]w the Father.
  • 2. How as Man becomes to share in this know­ledg.
  • 3. The Reason of it.

To the First.

For the right apprehending, how the Second Person may in a peculiar manner be said to know the Father, we must conceive that the knowledg of Christ, as Second per­son, may be attended upon a double consideration, or ground.

1. As it Issues from the understanding of the God-Head. For God, according to the expression of the Scripture, being a Spirit, & of al other most excellent, and therefore reasonable, he must have the most excellent fa­culties: and therefore understanding and wil. For what is most eminent, that we have allowance, from the rule, to beleeve, that it doth belong to the God-Head, and we may so conceive of it.

From this understanding it is, that the God-Head is said to be Omniscient, to know al things, that are know­able. This being an Attribute of the Deity, it doth equally belong to al the persons: For al the Persons having one and the same God-Head, they have equally al the Attributes of the God-Head indifferently, equally, belonging to them. Therefore al are eternal, immortal, infin [...]e, Omnipotent, Omni [...]cient, and so know al things: and [...]o know each other in this generall sense: and the Father and spirit know the Son, and He them by this kind of knowledg. But this is too large, not here at­tended,

For it is not proper to say, That the God-Head [Page 423]knows the Father to be Father of it, with that speci [...]l reference; or that the God-Head should cal the Father, my Father; I say it is not proper, nay it is not true.

For the Father is not the Father of the God-Head, but of the Son.

If it could cal the Father as Father of it: then it should be the Son of the Father, then it should be be­gotten of the Father.

But the Father begets the Son, not the God-Head.

That which belongs to the God-Head, belongs to al the persons, as being common: then to the Spirit. Then the spirit might know and cal the Father, the Father of it, but that he is not.

That which belongs to the God-Head belongs to the Father, and so the Father might be a Son to him­self.

2. This knowledg is to be considered, according as it at­tends the manner of the work of the understanding, which carries a specialty of respect with it, in the act thereof, and so it may in a peculiar manner be affirmed of Father and Son, and in the several regards, appropriated unto either. The reason whereof we shal scan anon, as it comes in our way; when the understanding of the God-Head, by knowing it self, conceiveth an image of it self, makes an impress or engraven character of it self, which it ever eyes; and owns, this manner of knowing belongs to the Father, and thence Issues an especial man­ner of knowing the Father by and in the Son. As Joh. 10.15.

As the Father knows me, I know the Father. And that appears in a Three-fold act of the Son.

  • 1. The Son takes the Impression of his Image.
  • 2. Returnes it.
  • 3. Eyes and ownes the Imprinter of it.

1. Takes this Impression. The Father gives him [Page 424]Sonship, and the nature of al relation requires, they give being each to other.

The Father by understanding conceives an Image: the Son is the Image conceived. As a man is not a Father, be­cause he is a man, but because he begets a Son. A man is not a Son, because he is a man, but because he is begotten of a Father.

So the God-Head is not a Father, because God-Head, but because it conceives an Image of it self. The Son is not a Son, because God, but because he is con­ceived of another who did conceive. This is the meaning of the Apostle. The words are marvailous pat and Pithy and carry wieght with them, but answer exactly to the thing in Hand. Hebr. 1.3. Christ as the second person is called, The Ingraven Form or Chara­cter of the Fathers Person. The word signifies to in­grave, and implies an Image of a thing, not feigned only in our mind and Imagination, nor, vani­shing and changing, as in a representation in a Glass, as the form of the face th [...]re. But a form or resemblance Ingraven, Cut, or instamped on Brass or Wood, which hath stability & permanency with it. As Beza in Locum.

2. Returns this Impression. As the Son takes all from the Father, [...]o he Returns al to the Father. It is the Nature of those things, that are relates, or in relati­on to look one towards another, and to give being re­lative one to another. That is the meaning of the Apo­stles other phrase, in the place formerly alledged, Hebr. 1.3. Christ is the [...], The Shine of his glory: the word signifies, a Light, or brightness shi­ning from a Light: a shine from a light reflecting or looking back to that reflection of light again. And here by the way, ye have the rise and reason of these divers manners of understanding in the God-Head, and so the diverse subsistences, and Personalities, Namely, be­cause the understanding of the God-Head, acting upon it self, it becomes to be reflected and turned back upon it self.

If there be a reflect act in the Deity upon it self, then there must be divers manners of being in the Deity.

But there is such a reflecting; therefore, For the right understanding of this, ye must conceive the Un­derstanding of the God-head, being pure act, and infi­nite, it must have a proportionable, and therefore an infinite Object: therefore understand himself, conceive an Image of himself; this Image of himself, must be conceived, and look back upon himself, or his own con­ceiving again.

Now that the shine of this Impression must return a­gain upon it self, and look back to the impression, is thus made plain, by setting a dis-similitude by it. When the operative, active Wisdom of God fals upon nothing; purposing to make a VVorld, it breaks through that no­thing, and brings forth an effect, a Creature out of it, stinted with bounds of being, and time; it's both finite, and temporary, hath a beginning of time, and may have an end.

But this Understanding falling upon the God-head, which is absolutely first, and infinite, it cannot break through, make an effect, or give this the Being of a Crea­ture, being infinite, and first-being.

The Act of Gods Wisdom fals upon that as his Ob­ject, and returns again upon it self, and so doth conceive, and hath an Image of it self conceived, an engraven Cha­racter from this Impression returned by resemblance up­on the Impression.

As take a beam of the Sun, meet with the Glass, it finds way, by reason of the perspicuity of the body to pass through it.

But let it fal upon a firm, and solid body, pierce, and pass it cannot: and therefore it fals upon the body, and returns upon it self from the body: the falling is the re­flecting of it, and by returning, it comes to be reflected.

Here note, The Light is one thing; but the reflecting, and returned, or to be reflected upon it self, is another. [Page 426]These answer each the other, stir up the act, each of o­ther; no reflecting, no returning; no returning, no re­flecting. They give being to, and maintain being each in other: mark that, The reflecting, and being refle­cted, is not the cause of the Light, but each of other.

So here: The Wisdom of the God-head, is like the Light reflecting upon it self, there is a like Image of it self returned again, and conceived. This being concei­ved, as it had al from the Father, so it eyes, and answers al in the Father conceiving.

A man may understand a Truth, but when by under­standing, he darts it upon his mind to enlighten, and so teach and rectifie: The mind receives, and stands recti­fied, and enlightened The Understanding is one thing, but the darting by Understanding, rectifying, and en­lightening; the mind returning, and standing rectified, these are divers manners really distinct, and directly an­swering each the other in a peculiar manner.

Thus our Savior is said to manifest the Name of the Father, not his Name as God, but as Father. As I said before: The Light is not the cause of the reflecting, or returning; but one of these, is the cause of the other: reflecting is the cause of returning, and returning is the cause of reflecting.

So the Understanding is not the cause of Teaching, for that may be where no teaching is: but Teaching, re­ctifying the Knowledg, is the cause why Knowledg comes to be rectified. So that Phrase; No man knows the Son, but he to whom the Father will reveal him; and no man knows the Father, but he to whom the Son will reveal him. No man knows what the rectifying of the Knowledg is, but he who hath his Knowledg recti­fied. And this is to be attended, according to the Second Person in the Deity; for it's true both waies, as wel of the Father, who was never incarnate, as of the Son, who was.

3. Eyes and owns the Impression, and the Imprinter [Page 427]of it in an especial manner: John 14.9. He that hath seen me, hath seen the Father also. Not he that saw him with his Bodily Eyes, or saw only the external, and visible, bodily presence of our Savior: but he that saw him as a Son, he would own the Father also, as expres­sing the lively resemblance of his Father, It answers so fully in al things. As we see in Sensitive Creatures, the yong can own the Dam, by the scent, smel, or blea­ting: There is somthing of their own there.

He that hath his Mind rectified by a Truth, wil own the rectifying, or teaching while he lives, John, 10.15. The Father knows me, and I know the Father.

2. How this belongs to our Savior, as Man, as well as the Second Person: For so he looks at himself, and in that respect, and consideration, we must un­derstand his Expression here.

Answ. This Knowledg belongs firstly to the Son as Second Person; but to the Humane Nature so far, as the Relation of Son-ship leaves some impression, accor­ding to the Nature, and Condition thereof. So that the Second Person in the Trinity, is no other, nor acts any otherwise than he did in himself. But this manner of a­cting in the knowledg of the Father, appears in the Hu­mane Nature, and leave [...] new impressions in an especial manner, and the Father also in, and by him. And that is done in regard of that Union, that the Humane Nature hath to the Second Person: For as we know, the Second Person takes the Humane Nature into personal Union with him, so that there is not two Sons, but one Son: and the Lord Christ remains the same Person after the Union, that he was before. And therefore being one and the same Person with the Son, he may be said to know the Father, as the Son, in his manner and measure.

For as the Father gives being to the Son, and the Son receives al from the Father: so the Humane Nature hath [Page 428]a total dependance upon the Son, he only incarnate, and so a sole reference with that respect to him, and so in him, to the Father: So that it is said, to be one and the same Person, one and the same Son, with the Son.

2. As to be reflected, is said to be the property of the Second Person, looking back, and returning his subsi­stence to the Father: So our Nature having a total de­pendance upon Christ in the Union, and being one Per­son with him, looks as the Second Person wholly to the Father: He brings back Jacob. Nay, it eyes, and owns, through the Son, al those Fatherly Impressions, and Affections, which are in the Father, and wherein he intimately unbosoms himself to his Son. That is the value of the word, Prov. 8.30. as we have observed before. [...], as much as, intueri, retinere.

3. The Reason is taken from that Relation which is between the Father and the Son. The Nature whereof, is to give total Being only one to another, to maintain that Being only, one in another: and therefore there is a manner of making known each of other in special appropriate to them.

That which gives a perfect discovery of the thing, that makes way for perfect knowing. But relates alone give perfect Being. No man can tel what buying is, but by selling. Our Savior disputes upon this Ground: He that hath seen me, hath seen the Father; because I am in the Father, and the Father in me; to wit, by ver­tue of that Relation there is in one to the other.

USE, 1. Instruction.

We here see the Reason, why many of the Faithful are at such a loss for the Knowledg of the Love, and Fa­vor, and Acceptance of the Father. They seek not to Christ for this: and therefore they are not acquainted, [Page 429]and informed. They take not the right way to come to the Speech of the Father, John, 14 [...]6. I am the way: there is none that comes to the Father, nor can be ac­quainted with his mind, but by me.

When our Savior was checking Nicodemus for his ig­norance, as not reaching the knowledg o [...] Mercy, he gives this as the reason, we repair not to him, who only can re­lieve, and reveal, John, 3.13. No man ascends up in­to Heaven, but the Son of Man, w [...] is in Heaven.

So our Savior did with Philip, when he so earnestly desired the knowledg of the Father; Shew us the Fa­ther, and it shall s [...]ffice. So many perplexed ones; Shew us the Face of a reconciled Father, and it's enough: they are to be checked, as he, John 14.9. Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me? He that hath [...]een me, hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?

2. Hence we may discern the Cause how it comes to pass, That men of mean Place and Parts, shallow Compass and Conceivings, poor, and feeble Abilities, not able to see much in ordinary occasions; and yet so comforted, assured, p [...]rswaded of the Love of the Father. The rea­son in from hence: They are taught of Christ; he knows all, and he makes them know. As it was said, when they wondred at the Answers of the Disciples; They knew they had been with Jesus, Act. 4.13. He that hath intelligence dayly from such, as have the Ear of the King, sit at Counsel-Table, he in the Bosom of his Majesty; if he have an express, and Intelligence, it's no wonder; because he understands the Mysteries of State, the mind of the King. So it is here, Christ lies in the Bosom of the Fa [...]her, and Christ discloseth those bosom Expressions, and Affections of the Father.

We have done with the First. The Second follows:

—And these have known that thou hast sent me.

Here is another Circumstance touching the Descripti­on of the Parties for whom our Savior praies, which may yet further his Petition, that it may be of prevailing force with the Father, for the grant of his desire (to wit) That they may be where he is, and see his Glory.

Had they indeed been the wicked of the World, who never knew the Father, nor himself, and therefore were never fit, nor able to see his Glory, or to take any satis­faction in it, or to return any Glory to the Father, or himself thereby: It had been bootless for him to have begged such a favor, and it had been impossible for them to receive any good by it, as having no interest therein, nor fitness for the enjoyment of such a Priviledg.

But he praies, who knows him as a Son, knows his Father, yea, such a Son, such a Father, known by an Eternal Generation.

And he praies for such, who know that the Father hath sent him; and therefore are wel acquainted with him and the Father, and with the Ambassage he comes of, and with that great Work which he had undertaken, and hath now discharged, and for which he shal have a Name, that at the Name of Jesus, every knee shal bow, both in Heaven and Earth. And therefore they who know what the Father hath purposed, and the Son hath performed, and that experimentally to their own good; They are the fittest to see it, and to celebrate the Name of the Father and Son for ever in Heaven.

The Saints have a special Knowledg,Doct. that the Lord Christ is sent of God the Fa­ther, for the Work of their Salvation.

These, all these, and none but these, have this Know­ledg, as their priviledg, and peculiar Favor appropria­ted to them: in which the World hath no Portion, nor yet shal ever be made Partakers of it.

At the great Day, when al Flesh shal appear before God, and al his Saints gathered, and by Christ brought home to the Father, when he hath fully finished the Work, and done the Wil of the Father: That as he now professeth, I came not to do mine own wil, but the wil of him that sent me: and this is the wil of him that sent me, That of those that thou hast given me, I should lose none, but raise them up at the last day.

Then I say, when the Work is finished, and perfor­med in the Eyes of the Ungodly, and he shall be admired in his Saints; not of them only, but admired in them, even by the Wicked, who shal be forced to admire that Power, and Love, and Mercy, which hath done such great things for such undeserving Creatures: and there­fore shal see it, and be constrained to acknowledg the truth and reality of that great Work: what the Father purposed, and plotted from Eternity with the Lord Je­sus; how out of infinite Love and. Faithfulness he was sent, and hath now accomplished it.

This they shal see, and be forced to know with grief and vexation of Spirit, that it is so: And for this also our Savior prayed in the former Verse, That the World may know, that thou hast sent me.

But to find, and own this, in the reality of the Work of it; to tract the foot-steps of the unsearchable Wis­dom, and Riches of Mercy in marking this good upon their Souls, in that miraculous, and my sterious manner [Page 432]as he hath: this is peculiar to the Saints.

These, and these alone, know that Christ is sent to this Work: these have found the excellency of it here; and these are fit to gaze upon it, and admire it for ever hereafter.

Three things we are to open:

  • 1. How Christ is said to be sent of the Father.
  • 2. For what he is sent; and what was his Er­rand.
  • 3. How the Saints know this in a special manner.

1. How sent.

This Sending, is the first in-let, whereby the Foun­tain of the ever lasting good Wil, and Favor of the Fa­ther, is laid open, and let out unto us: And you shal find the Spirit in the Scripture leading al his by the hand hither; here he would Land us, and here leave us, and thereby teaching of us, that we should not stay, be­fore we repair hither, and when we are here, not to stir: But rest, and repose our Soul, and resolve our Faith, and Confidence, as into the first Principle; where there is no possibility, either of alteration, or addition: So firm, it cannot be altered; so fully sufficient, and sa­tisfactory, that nothing can be added, nor desired.

It is too mysterious a depth, and therefore beyond our scantling to fathom it. We wil a little, make some search with Sobriety, so far as may help us to under­stand the place in hand.

Thus our Savior makes it the Head Corner Stone of our Confidence: This is Eternal Life, to know thee (that is, the Father) to be only God (not he only to be God, but to be the only God) there is but one only Deity, and he hath that only God-head, and what be­side? and whom thou hast sent, Jesus Christ. Know him as a Christ, annointed, and fitted; and as a Jesus, a Savior, who hath performed the work; and that he is [Page 433] sent for that very End, and Errand, and for that purpose from God the Father.

For had our Savior done it, if he had not been sent, the Soul would have been at a loss, whether he had ever sa­tisfied, or should ever be accepted.

But when our Faith can reach this: That the Father, who is the only God, hath sent him, he wil then assist, and accept, and we should go no further, seek no other; we then [...]it down, and are at rest, John, 12.44.

We shall therefore make way for the Discovery of the Nature of this Sending, by the Propositions following:

1. This Sending, taken in a ful Sense, is not an Act of the Deity, or Divine Nature properly; but of the Person, or Persons in the Deity, who nextly, and imme­diately dispenseth it.

Reas. That which is an Act of the Deity, or God-head, belongs indifferently, and equally to al the Per­sons; in that al are equally God, and have the Essence of the Deity, and al the Essential Attributes, equally attributed to them al. As al are Eternal, Omnipotent; all Create, Decree, &c.

But to send (much less to send the Lord Christ) doth not belong to al the Persons: The Spirit is never said to send in the Phrase of Scripture, nor is the Father ever said to be sent. And this shal be further cleared and proved in the Conclusions that follow; and by the Nature of Mission, as it's set forth to us in the Word.

2. This Sending hath a double Reference.

  • 1. To the Person that is sent.
  • 2. To the thing about which he is sent: namely, When the Person sent, leaves a new act, or impression upon the Creature: so that the Creature is said to be otherwise than it was, and to have somthing which formerly it had not, and the Person is sent on purpose, to leave such operations, and impressions.

God sent his Son made of a Woman, sent him to take our Nature: here the second person takes our Nature into personal union with him. Sanctifies it, unites it, supports it.

Though Christ be the same, yet here be new impres­sions, which appear in the Creature, which formerly did not. I wil send the Comforter, and be shal teach you and lead you into al truth. Here be new and diverse expressions of the work of the Spirit appearing, which formerly did not. Joh. 16.10.11. The second re­spect implies ever the first; the sending to a work im­plies a person that must be, and is sent to that end: though then these may be distinguished, in our reason and consideration, yet in the Nature of the thing, the one is included in the other.

3. Sending, when it respects a Person properly, It ever implies in the Nature of the thing, The Authority of him that sends, in respect of the party that is sent. I say Authority, but not of rule or Dominion so much, as Authority of Order & Communication of work from one to another, and in this sense; which is a proper and true sense; he only can be said to be sent, who works from another: whether it be in way of Origination, or firstness of Order; to be first beginner or setter in of a work before al other: or whether it be in regard of opera­tive or active production when several persons may, as one Joint principle, put forth a work, for the producing. They are not one in order before another, but both meet as one principle and producer or bringer forth of the other; And therefore hence it is plain, and undeniably Evident (which ye must especially observe) that in this breadth and extent of sending, which the Scripture speaks to, The Son and the Spirit are only said to be sent, and it is never, and indeed it can never be, affirm­ed of the Father.

If sending imply Authority of Order and communi­cation [Page 435]of work from another, then there is none can send the Father, because there is none in Order before him: nor can he be sent, because he works of himself, and from himself, nor from another, therefore cannot be sent from another.

Hence again it follows: The Spirit may be sent from the Father and the Son, and the Father and the Son may sent: because the Spirit, the Holy Ghost works in Order from both, and there is Authority of Order and communication from both. Gal. 4.6. God hath sent forth the Spirit of the Son. That is, the Father, as appears by the distinction of Son in the words. Joh. 15.26. When the Comforter is come, whom I wil send unto you from the Father. Joh. 14.26. When the Comforter is come, whom the Father wil send in my Name.

Hence Christ can only be said to be sent of the Fa­ther, not of the Holy Ghost (I speak now of this inter­nal sending, which is attended only in regard of the Per­son, not of the thing, about which he is sent) the Rea­son and ground is the same.

Sending implies the Authority of Order and Com­munication of work from one to another: but the Son works only from the Father, therefore can be said only to be sent from the Father.

Hence are there so many expressions and confessions of our Savior in this kind, almost in every verse, when he would settle his commission. Joh. 5.30. I seek not mine own Wil, but the Wil of my Father which sent me. And verse, 36. I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which the Father hath given me to finish, they bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me.

4. Propos. This sending of our Savior is the first of al others, and makes way for al other sending, or spirit­ual good things, that are sent unto us from God.

Have this, have al: make sure of this, make sure of [Page 436]al: maintaine this, maintain a certain intercourse and Communication of al good things unto our Souls from the Lord. This is the first out filet of God everlasting love and goodness. 1 Joh: 4.9.God so loved us, that he sent his only begotten Son &c.

There is no expectation of the Spirit, there is mo possibility of having, no, in truth of the sending of the Spirit, but only by this way, and upon this ground Joh. 16.7. It behooves that I go away, for unless I go, the Spirit wil not come unto you, but if I go, I wil send him. No coming of the spirit, unless he had first come. Unless he go to Heaven, no sending of the Spirit from Heaven.

As it is true for the measure in regard of his ascension: so it is true, for the reality of the thing, in regard of his Mission from the Father. For the spirit must be sent from the Father and the Son: And therefore it presumes his sending. And Hence it is, when he is come, being sent of the Father, He shal teach you al things, and shal bring to mind, what ever I have said to you. And that which Christ speaks, he hath from the Father, not from the Spirit. Joh. 14.10. — The words he speaks not of himself. And Verse, 24. The words which ye hear are not mine, but the Fathers which sent me; He hath the message from him. Joh. 12.49. I have not speken of my self, but the Father, which sent me, gave me a command what I shal say, and what I should speak.

Nay our Savior doth not take of the Spirit, but the Spirit hears from him, speaks from him. Joh. 16.13. Howbeit, when the Spirit of truth is come he wil guid you into al truth. For he shal not speak of himself, but whatever he shal hear, that shal he speak. He shal take of mine, and shew it unto you. Verse, 15. Christ doth not go to take of the graces from the Spirit: but the Spirit, because Christ is sent to be the Head of the Church, to have al Grace, and to be the Fountain [Page 437]to communicate al Grace, therefore the Spirit takes of his. Not takes of the Father, because the Father hath given al to him, but takes of his, who hath his commis­sion from the Father, and is sent out his work, of pur­pose.

The sending of al Officers is hence. As my Father sent me, I send you: And this is the order and Method of Gods Communication: He that receives you, receives me; and he that receives me, receives him that sent me. Yea the sending of Gospel and al ordinances. Joh. 17.8. For I have given unto them the words thou gavest me, and they have received them, and have known and beleeved that thou didst send me.

Yea the ground of al those glorious works he hath ac­complished in his own Person, and wil perform for his, and against his enemies for their good, is hence. Joh. 9.4. I must do the works of him that sent me, while it is day. And 5.36. The works which the Father hath given me to do, bear witness, that the Father hath sent me. And when he had fulfilled al, he then returnes to his Father.

5. As sending evidenceth an Authority in him that sends: So to be sent implies, that he that is sent takes this Authoritative Order, stands ingaged to answer it, thus given and taken, And is fully to act under the will of him, from whom he must work. And thus it is with the Lord Christ, as second person in the glorious Trinity, being sent by God the Father, to work as from him.

For as the manner of their being, so is the manner of their working: the Son from the Father, and therefore works from the Father: he is ready to entertain this Order of working, and ingageth himself to answer the Order and wil of the Father, and stands fitted to have the Nature of man united to him, that he may go upon the operation of that work of the Father, according to the Order of the Father given him, and al this in a [Page 438]peculiar manner appropriate to the Son.

What ever belongs to the Second Person, and none els, that he hath as a Son received from the Father.

But to act by Authoritative order form the Father alone: belongs to the Second Person and none els.

Therefore this as a Son he hath received from the Fa­ther.

Therefore as he must act from him alone: so he is bound to answer that Order of his.

Therefore works nothing, but what he sees, his Fa­ther work: speaks nothing but what he hears his Father say.

Therefore does nothing, but what the Father wil.

Therefore to be fitted, when his wil is, to take the Nature of man into Personal union that he may go upon the execution of his wil.

I say receive it into personal union. Because this belongs to no other Person, not Father, nor Holy Ghost but himself. For its Haeresie to say, the Father is incarnate or the Holy Ghost is incarnate. How ever therefore he did not receive the Human Nature, but in time: Yet he was fitted for this work, by this sending and eternal mission of his before al time: this makes way for that work of Redemption,

The Human Nature hath a new manner of subsistence and alteration, according to its being, but there is no al­teration in the Second Person. As Gods power is the same before the things were made: though they cannot be supported, but when they are made.

Again when the Human Nature is united; this union we know is in reason reall, me non cogitante.

If the proper being of the union issued only from the Human Nature, then there should be no difference, in regard of the persons, but they should share a like in it. [Page 439]But that is false and Heretical. For neither Father, nor Holy Ghost are incarnate. Nor is the Human Nature taken into personal union or becomes one person with the Father on Holy Ghost. Therefore there is som­thing of this union issues from the Second Person in an especial manner; and that is to receive it into person­al union: for which he was fitted from eternity by his mission, but takes it up in the fulness of time, when he was sent by the Father thereunto.

Some such thing I have thought might be intimated in those Scriptures; Joh. 8.42. and 17.8. and 13.2. He came out, proceeded from God, When he was to enter upon the Execution of the work, and make the Human Nature feele that support, Leaning, and being termi­nated in the subsistence of the Second Person, and went abroad in the execution of the work, and therefore now he returnes to God again.

Lastly this sending in regard of the work upon the Creature: This conclusion may give some light, as much as shal serve our purpose. The Lord Christ as God and man hath some things proper to himself:

1. In the manner of the work and Priviledg, where with he stands possessed, he is the head of his Church, and hath the immediate dispensation of al power committed to him for the good of it, and these are pe­culiar. He is the Head of his Church. None but he. Al power is committed to him, and to none but him. But in regard of the work there is a common concur­rence of al the Persons with him.

II. For what he is sent.

1. To bring Jacob again. Isa 49.5. Those I must bring. Joh. 10.16. All that he hath given me, come to me. Joh. 6.37. And Verse, 39. God gives them to him And Chap. 17.8. And he gives them his word, and they know that he is sent.

2. To keep them, when they are brought. Joh. 6.38. I came to do the wil of my Father. And Verse, 39. This is his wil, that I should lose nothing. And Therefore prayes for them, that the Father would keep them. Joh. 17.11.

3. To perfect that life of Grace in Glory. Joh. 12.49, 50. 1 Joh. 4.9. Joh. 6.40. I wil raise them up at the last day.

He is sent on this Errand, that he shal see them safe arrived, landed in Heaven.

USE, 1. Matter of Admiration.

See and be swallowed up with the wonderment of Gods love to such worthless ones, as we. Had he sent his letters to comfort, his Creatures to visite, his Angels to administer, it had been more than we worthless worms could have expected. So the Apostle. 1 Joh. 4.9, 10. In this was manifested the love of God to­wards us in that he sent his Son. If any man question his love, or desire to see the discovery of love: In this its manifested undeniably, infallibly. Love unmatch­able, unconceivable, that he should send his own Son, from his own bosom, to such worthless dust.

In this is Love, herein is Love, it's here to be adored, admired for ever. Not that we loved him: for that had been Love, to have owned us, and accepted of us, But that he loved us, and sent his Son to be a Propitia­tion for our sins. Elizabeth is drawn to a wonder­ment at the coming of Mary: How comes it, that the Mother of my Lord, cometh unto me? Luke, 1.43. But how cometh it, that the Lord himself come? It's more than is usually observed, or indeed can be expe­cted, that a man should send a choyce Pearl from his Closet, a Diamond out of his Cabinet. But that one should send his whol Treasure, it's more than can be ima­gined, Or desired.

But it's so here: God hath sent his Son, in whom al the Treasures of Wisdom and Knowledg are his; and to us so vile, so unthankful, and unworthy.

Nay, as God, when he would convince Satan of Jobs Sincerity, he impannels a Jury from Hel; tels him, that he had moved him to afflict Job without a Cause: for yet he held his Innocency, and the Devil could not deny it.

So consider here for thy shame, if thy heart stir not with admiration, we shal impannel a Jury from Hel, which wil give in a Verdict.

2 Thes. 1.8, 9. At the day of Judgment, God shal be Glorious in all his Saints, but admired in them that believe. When al the wicked shal be gathered at the left hand of Christ, the Devils, and damned Spirits, and al the rabble of those fulsom Goats, shal see the poor Saints, such as were opposite to Christ, haters of him, to be made one with him: They who rejected, nay, may be, persecuted Christ, and the means of Grace, to be now made partakers of Christ and Grace: The De­vils wil admire this mercy, though they never share in it; and shalt not thou admire it, who art partaker of it?

2. Comfort, of never failing assurance of our safety and happiness. It's the wil of the Father, and that must stand; and Christ is sent to do his wil, and he wil not fail of doing that, for which he was appointed; and therefore thou canst not fail of Heaven. Christ profes­seth (John, 6.38, 39.) he came to do the Wil of the Father, and this is his Wil, That he should lose none, but raise them up at the last day; and he resolves he wil lose none, but he wil raise them up, verse 40.

We have done with the Two former Things which were to be attended in the Explication.

  • 1. What it was to be sent.
  • 2. Why, or for what End he was sent.

III. We are now to enquire touching the knowledge of this, so far as it comes in an especial manner to be ap­propriated to the Saints: And his is the third Particu­lar to be opened, for the discovery of the former Point; are we shal only look at it in that peculiar respect, as it is a proper Brand for Christs Sheep, and a Livery of his Servants, and Followers. For so the Text intimates, and our Savior speaks of it in that regard.

The World knows thee not, they never attained this Learning, nor were trained, and taught up to it: they are amongst the Petties, and Punies of the world, and may have some worldly wisdom. These waies of wisdom, they are above, and too high for a Fool, such as the wic­ked of the World are. These who are promoted to the University of the Gospel, and have learned of Christ, these know; such and such only know, have a special knowledge of God the Father in Christ: they know him as sent, and therefore must needs know the Father who did send him.

Touching the Specialty of this Knowledg, which is the Portion and Inheritance appropriated to the Saints, as the wise man saies, The Wicked meddle not with the Joy of the Righteous: so it's as true in this, they reach not their Knowledg.

Of this we shal enquire:

  • 1. Wherein the Specialty of this Knowledg consists.
  • 2. How it comes to be communicated to them.


The Specialty of this Knowledg, consists in Four Things:

  • 1. In the Ability by which they know.
  • 2. In the thing known.
  • 3. The Manner of the discovery of that so known.
  • 4. The setling of the heart by that.

1. This Knowledg is peculiar to the Saints, in re­gard [Page 443]of that special Ability, which they do receive from God, in special manner, by which their Judgments are cleered, and their Understandings enabled to search and see into such mysterious depths, and secret Dispensati­ons of God unto the Souls of his, in the Covenant of his Grace, and the Conveyance of his Mercy; which ex­ceeds, and over-flies the most Eagle-sighted Apprehen­sions of any Natural Man in the World.

They have the wisdom, and enlightening Grace of the Spirit in their Minds, and the concurrence, and assistance of the Spirit, to act and lead them out, and thereby to lead them into al Truths: and these must not be severed, because God hath joined them together, Zach. 4.2, 3. There must not be Lamps only to burn in the Golden Candle-stick; but there must be Olive Trees, to feed those Lamps, and to further their Light in their dayly burning. As that is true in the Church of Christ, it's true also in the heart of every Member of the Church, there is not only a Lamp of Knowledg burning in the Mind, but there must be also a constant supply of the Oyl of the Spirit, which must quicken, and act out that Spiritual Wisdom, for the right discerning of the things of our Peace. And this is the Condition of al the Saints, and the ordinary course of Gods Dispensation of himself, in the way of the Gospel. He hath given us a mind to know him, saies the Apostle, 1 John, 5.20 he hath given his Spirit, saies Paul, whereby we may know the things, that are graciously given us of God. This is the end of giving both, without which, it cannot be. So the words run, 1 Cor. 2.11, 12. We have not received the Spirit of the World, but the Spirit which is of God, that we might know the things that are graci­ously given us of God, q.d. There is no man of the world, who only hath the Spirit of the world, that can know such things: None of the Princes of the World knew them, verse 8. nay, no Natural Man can know them, verse 14.

But the Spirit searcheth the deep things of God. There be depths of the warmings of our minds and hearts, and none but the Spirit of God can discover them: deep things in the mind of God, and whoever knew his mind? No Creature ever did, or could; but Christ knew his mind, and we have the mind of Christ, and so come to know the mind of the Father, verse 16. And hence our Savior surveys the differencing Reason, why his Disci­ples might perceive; others, as Scribes and Pharisees, had eyes, and could not see. To you it is given to know the things of the Kingdom, but not to them: and upon this ground our Savior adviseth the Church of Laodicea: I counsel thee, to buy of me Eye-salve, to annoint thine Eyes, that thou mayest see. This Spiritual, and special, Super-natural Light, is that Eye-salve, which al the Dis­ciples of our-Savior had, and therefore they knew him. As the Sun is seen by his own Light: It must be the wisdom from above, that must enable us to see the things that are above. So John, 14.17. The World hath not seen, nor known the Comforter, but ye know him, that is, by the Light of the Spirit, ye come to see the Spi­rit.

2. In the thing known, there is a Specialty of Know­ledg. They look at it, as an Ambassage of Love, and Life, which the Lord Christ now brings from the Fa­ther, who intends their good in both, and our Savior comes on purpose to work it.

1. A message of love for the Soul of a sinner under the sight and sense of the guilt of his iniquity, he doth, and cannot but apprehend God as an angry God against him, that there be many causes of quarrel and contro­versie, that God hath lying by him, and indeed the con­troversie lies between the Father and the sinner: because his work was directly wronged and prejudiced. And Hence its evident, that the message must come from the Father, touching the terms and purpose of peace, if ever [Page 445]it be attained, because it is the Wrath and Justice of the Lord that proclaims War against the sinner, having justly deserved that his displeasure should break out a­gainst him.

The Lord Christ is the Prince of Peace, who is our Peace, and takes up the Quarrel between the Father, and the Elect, brings the glad tidings of Grace from God, who not only tenders, but desires reconciliation with the Soul, through Jesus. And therefore he must come as an Ambassador sent from the Father, and that the Soul must know; or else he could not attain his end, take up the Controversie betwixt the Father and him.

So among al Nations, it is a received course in Reason, the Ambassador must come from the Prince offended, that hath intended War; and he must make known the Commission of his Ambassage, as from him Authorized, else Peace and Agreement wil never be accomplished, nor received. So 1 John, 4.9. See also John 3.16, 17. God so loved the World, that he gave his Son, &c. How is that to be proved? He answers; For God sent his Son, not that he might condemn the World; for they condemn themselves; but that the World might live through him.

These are Riddles to the wicked, they may be talked of in the World, the noise of such things may go up and down: But to know, and own the Ambassage, as sent on purpose to him, this is a Secret peculiar to the Saints. As it was said, My Message is to thee, O Captain, 2 Kings, 9. The rest heard it, but he came to the speci­al understanding of it. So it is here.

Therefore John 15.21. This they will do unto you, because they know not him that sent me.

2. A Message of Life. For the sinner once seriously apprehensive of his many, and constant departures from God, his provocations are so ha [...]ous, that he cannot but [Page 446]see death in al his waies, he can do nothing, but he sins in al he doth, and therefore the wages of sin, being death, he must die for what he hath done, if God should pro­ceed in severity against him, and recompence his own waies upon his own Head.

Therefore having forfeited his Life into the hands of Divine Justice, viz. of the Father, whom he hath pro­voked: Christ must come as an Ambassador from the Father, and he must know he hath a Commission, and a grant of Life under the Fathers hand, else his Ambassage wil be in vain, wil not accomplish the end intended by him, and expected by the Faithful Party: He hath sent his Son, that we might live through him, 1 John, 4.9. This is the Record, that God hath given us Eternal Life, and this Life is in his Son, Chap. 5.11. It's the Fathers Gift, it belongs to the same Power, and place of Majesty, to give pardon, and so Life to a Malefactor; or to take Life from him, John, 6.57. As the living hath sent me, and I live by the Father; so he that be­leeveth in me, even he shall live by me. See the Order.

The Father is the Fountain of Life. He as a living God, sends Christ upon an Ambassage of Life. Christ hath received power of Life from the Father, and he as so sent, gives to those that beleeve in him.

The Faithful know this Commission of Life, and that it is come out on purpose, and intended to them, as he to Gideon, Judg. 6.23. Peace be unto thee, fear not, thou shalt not die. And they know, and own Christ, as so sent. All which are Mysteries to the wicked, they see no need of this; or if so, they neither own it in Christ, nor would receive it from him: They may hear the fame thereof, and yet know nothing, either of the Excellency of it, or of Gods Intendment of any good to them in it.

3. The Specialty of this Knowledg, appears in the Man­ner of communicating this good, to the Souls of the [Page 447]Faithful; namely, The astonishing Excellency of Power, that brings the reality of these Ambassages of Love and Life to the Soul; and the dazelling beauty of that Light that displaies them, and laies them open to the Eye of the beleeving Saint. Which things are con­cealed from the World, and therefore they count them foolishness; because they could never conceive, or be perswaded of any such thing. They think they cannot be, because they cannot perceive how they should be. As Nicodemus, How can these things be?

We wil give a little Light to both.

1. They find such a Power, as puts them to astonish­ment: For the Message of Love, and Life, are of such unconceivable worth in themselves, and so far beyond the thoughts of a sinner, that they should be sent from God, who is offended with them, and was, and is happy without them, and hath no need of them: and that by no other hand, but by the Lord Jesus, the Son of his Love, blessed for ever: and that to such, as they are, so unworthy, and vile in themselves, so loathsom, and abo­minable, by reason of the Number, and Nature of their Hellish Iniquities. That it seems so cross to the com­pass of al Reason, that they cannot but cavil at it, as a thing absurd and unreasonable to beleeve, and their di­strustful and guilty hearts cannot but reject it, as a thing impossible. Yea, the Disciples themselves, when the hardness of the work was resembled by a comparison from our Savior, they cried out, Who then can be sa­ved?

To make known, and make good this Ambassage to the Soul, God must make known his Almighty Power to the sinner, which he only that feels, is forced to con­fess; others cannot conceive. So Paul to the Ephe­sians, Chap. 1.17. &c. praies for a Spirit of Wisdom, and Revelation; another Spirit, and common Under­standing, cannot come neer such things. That they might know the excessive, exceeding great Activity of the [Page 448]might Power of God in bringing a sinner home to him­self, verse 19. and therefore the Convert, 1 Cor. 14.24. when he hath but a glimpse hereof, in the search of the Secrets of his own heart, he fals down, and confes­seth, God is in you of a Truth. It's the Wisdom, Power, Soveraignty of a God. It's beyond al created Power, ever to discover such things, to work so upon the Soul.

2. As the Power, that settles the Message, so the Light that discovers the Beauties, and Excellencies that are therein, utterly beyond apprehension, expectation, admiration. Peter professeth that the very Angels of Heaven, pry into these Secrets, delight to lie down, and look wishly into them, because they lie so low and deep, beyond their discerning, 1 Pet. 1.11. yea, the Apostle Paul concludes, the Eye never saw, the Ear never heard, nay, it never entred into the heart of man to conceive th [...]se things, 1 Cor. 2.9. Nothing can be seen by proof, and observation, nothing heard by re­port from others, no such thing can be anvilled, and con­trived by the conceitings of al the Understanding of men, and yet they are such things, which God hath revealed by his Spirit in the Gospel. Hence the Phrase, 1 Pet. 2.9. God hath called you out of darkness into his mar­velous Light. Every thing is a Mystery, a marvel in the work of Grace, when once we have an Eye to see. We marvel at our own wretchedness, and baseness; we marvel at Gods Patience, to bear with such worthless, and sinful ones as we be; our Peace is marvelous, such as pas­se [...]h al understanding; joy marvelous, unspeakable, and glorious: And the ungodly meddle not in any of these things, being indeed unknown to them.

There is hid Manna, Revel. 2. Secret, and unconceiva­ble refreshings [...]ound in C [...]rist, a white Stone, and a new Name, which no man knows, but he that hath it: and therefore he judgeth all things, saith the Apostle, he that is Spiritual; and is judged of no man.

And Lastly: For the setling of the heart, It lets in such an overbearing, both Power and Sweetness, of the good thus known, that it carries the heart along with it, and settles and keeps the heart to it. And therefore it ever hath Faith accompanying it. They that know thy name, wil trust in thee. Psal. 9, 10. Hadst thou known, who it is, that said unto thee give me to drink thou wouldst have asked of him, and he would have given thee living Water. Joh. 4.10. Therefore she should have asked in Faith. By this we know that we do know. We have the science of knowledge, that we have the truth and soundness of Faith. And somtimes, yea, frequently, in the phrase of Scripture it is put for faith. Joh. 17.3. This is Eternal life to know thee; that is, to beleeve in thee.

2. The means how this knowledge comes to settle the faithful.

Answ. It is by the means, which God in the course of his Providence & appointment hath ordained for that end, that is, his good word in the Scriptures recorded, by his Ministery delivered to them.

It is true, there is a spirit of Wisdom and revelation, that is put forth in this dispensation; but its as true, that this Spirit goes along with this word, and works in this word, as seems good to the good pleasure and wil of Christ. The place is more precious than Pearls, and worthy to be retained in the table of our hearts for ever. Joh. 17.7, 8. Now they (to wit the Apostles) Have known, that all things, whatever thou hast given me, are of thee. Whence comes that? Answer, verse, 8. I have given to them the words which thou givest me, and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have beleeved that thou didst send me. Loe: The words that God the Father gave Christ; the words of he Gospel: Ev [...]nge­lium, that good tidings he gave the Apostles: And they [Page 450]received them, and by them they knew that Christ came from God, and beleeved he was sent of that mes­sage.

Quest. Is this the condition of all the Saints?

Answ. For the reality and substance of what hath been said, it appertains to al: though there be much difference in the manner and measure, how these disco­veries come to be dispensed.

Object. But we see by experience, many of Gods own, are Ignorant here.

Answ. There is a discovery of these in a manner and measure to al: for al have that spiritual light, all have notice of that Ambassage of peace of love, and of life, brought them in, and by Christ: and by that overbearing power and light, those good things of Christ in the Gos­pel are discovered so convictingly, and set on so effica­ciously, that the heart is kept to them. By such a knowledg they come to be apprehended, and receive.

But there is a reflect act, when our understanding views and looks over the work of the mind and heart, so that we know that we do know, and know that we do receive. This the Saints may, and do want many times for some while.

We have this dispatcht the four Particulars and so cleared our way to the understanding of the Doctrine proposed, which was; The Saints have a special know­ledg that the Lord Christ is sent of God the Father for the work of their Salvation. We shal now proceed to the Reasons and Uses in few words

The Reason of the point is double

1. From the Office of our Savior, Reas. 1. and the Aim and scope he hath in the execution of the work thereof. He comes not to do his own wil, nor to seek his own glory, but to do the wil, and seek the glory of him that sent him. Therefore he must dispense al, as from him, draw al Eyes and hearts towards him. For the Nature of an Ambas­sage [Page 451]doth of necessity imply and require this. It makes al to look to the person who sends the Ambassage, whose power and pleasure is there firstly attended: and leads al by the hand, so that they must not rest in their returns, until they come to the Father.

2. The heart of a sinner cannot be quieted, the di­stressed Soul cannot find rest, or repose, before it be car­ried to God the Father. Joh. 12.49, 50. And Chap. 11.42.

USE, 1.

It teacheth the Saints to acknowledg with al thankful­ness that inlarged favor of the Lord towards them, that he would vouchsafe so choice and peculiar Priviledges to them, which he denies to al the world beside: That he wil familiarize himself to them, and admit them into his presence, when he doth estrange himself from al others. It's no smal part of respects, but an argument and evidence of peculiar and indeared respect; that when no man may come to the speech or sight of the King, He no sooner comes to Court, but he may come into pre­sence, and be acquainted with the Secrets of Sate. Nay, if he come, no sooner is notice given, but he may have entrance at the first appearance; when he wil be seen by none of the Court, or Kingdom beside.

This is your Priviledg, O ye blessed of the Lord; when the Lord locks up himself, and withdraws the dis­covery of his presence from the greatest part, yea, from al the world.

The World know him not; yet ye do know him, and may be acquainted with al his secret purposes, touching his dispensations of the greatest Affairs of the world, his counsels touching the Salvation, and damnation of men.

This made Judas at a stand, (not Iscariot.) Why wilt thou shew thy self to us, and not unto the World? They [Page 452]shal understand nothing of those Ambassages of Peace and Life, which thou hast given Christ in Commission to communicate to the Souls of thine: And why shew to us? In our selves as Sinful, and in outward Conditions more low, and mean, and base than they. Why wilt [...]hou? It's only thy wil, and the wonder of thy free Grace. Thy wil be done, and blessed be thy Name for ever. To you it's given to know the Mysteries of the Kingdom of God, but not to [...]hem. It is a Gift, and that a choyce one, which most in the world attain not unto. Give God the praise and honor of it again.

It's ever an Evidence of special regard, and intimate Confederacy, when King or State holds constant intel­ligence, and correspondence by Agents, and Ambassadors with one State, but recals them from al other, So it is here. Ye have an express of the good pleasure, and al the Affairs of Peace and Life, that are transacted in Hea­ven, mannaged and committed to Christ, ye may know the mind of God, when he imparts no such privacies to any ungodly Person whatsoever.

USE, 2. Of Examination.

Hence we may discern, whether we be of the Scum, and Reffuse of the World; or the Favorites, and Fol­lowers of Christ, for whom he praies, and Heaven is prepared. This is an Evidence, a never failing one, whereby the Followers of Christ may be known; They know God in Christ, and al his purposes of good, which he hath sent his Son to see accomplished for their good.

This our Savior makes the Ear-mark, the Brand-mark of his Flock, John 10.3, 4.27. His Sheep know his Voyce; they own the mind of God in his Word, and they wil honor him; and so the good Shep-heard is discerned by the like; I am the good Shepheard, who know mine, and am known of mine, verse 14. If they be mine, they wil know me; as yong Lambs the bleat of the Dam: [Page 453]and the smel of each other, wil make them own each o­ther among many thousands, 2 Cor. 13.5. Know ye not in your own selves, that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be Reprobates?

This Knowledg discovers it self by Two Evi­dences.

1. By the Effect of it. They will not follow a stran­ger. Strange Teachers, and strange Doctrines, they do not own, they wil not follow; and therefore the Apo­stle gives this as a certain Demonstration; They went out from us, because they were not of us; for had they been of us, they would never have gone from us, 1 John 2.19. Nay, the Apostle goes further, and his Expres­sion is dreadful, Heb. 10.38. The just by Faith, will hold out; but if any man draw back, my Soul shall have no pleasure in him; and therefore he quits his hands of that evil, blesseth himself from that. But we are not of those that draw back unto Perdition. If that be their way, Perdition wil be their end. It's a direful Doom, which Peter sets down, 2. Pet. 2.20, 21.

2. By the Means, and rise of it. It issues from the word received into the heart. I gave them thy Word, and they received it, and know, &c. And Prov. 2.10, 11. and Chap. 4.6. Forsake her not, and she will pre­serve thee; love her, and she will keep thee. It's that of the Apostle, 1 Thes. 2.13. When ye received the Word of God, ye received it not as the Word of men; but as the Word of God: Receive the Word, not as a Vessel doth Water, but as a Woman doth a Person whom she marrieth; receive it, to keep it, to live and die with it; and then it wil work effectually. But we entertain it, as a Passenger, as a Neighbor; and there­fore it comes and goes: we never have hearts engaged to it; if we had, we should understand every good Path, Prov. 2.9. Therefore our Savior gives the Reason, John, 5.43. I came in my Fathers Name, and ye will [Page 454]not receive me. Another comes in his own Name, and him ye wil receive.

We have now finished the Second and Third General, observed in the opening of these two Verses, viz. The Parties for whom this Prayer is made, which were described by way of dis-similitude to the World; and by their Effects, their Worth, and Excellency of Knowledg, and Grace. And The Party who makes the Prayer.

The next Branch, as it lies in the order of the words, which was the Fourth general Observation, is, The Means here used, and that which is resolved on, to be improved for the attaining of the end, which is sought for, with such earnestness in this Prayer: and this is ex­pressed in these words:

Verse 26. I have made known thy Name to them, and will make it known.

IN the words, there seems to be the Consideration of a double end: One is by way of Prevention, to an­swer a secret Demand, How the Faithful, and Follow­ers of Christ, come to attain that Knowledg, which is hid from the World, and whether it were Knowledg of the right make, or no? Both which, he resolves from hence; That he, who only doth know aright, he doth make known the Name of the Father to them; whence it comes that they both must know, and also know in a right and saving manner: For so good a Teacher, ha­ving power, and sufficiency to make wise unto Salvation, cannot but make them good Schollers. Another End is, To set home with further Evidence, the main Con­clusion [Page 455]in the foregoing Verse, That the Faithful may be with him, where he is, and so may see the Glory gi­ven him by God the Father: For if he hath for the pre­sent, made them know the Name of the Father, and is resolved, and doth engage himself, that he wil not cease further dayly to inform them, until he hath made them perfect in this Knowledg: then are they fittest to be partakers of that happiness to be with him, and to be­hold his Glory. But t his he hath done, and resolves stil further to do: Therefore, &c.

We have then, these two Things here to be atten­ded:

  • 1. The Work of our Savior, what he hath done: He hath made known this Name: that is, for time past.
  • 2. The Profession, and Engagement of Christ, what he wil do for time to come: He will make it known.

To the First: I have made known thy Name to them.

The Doctrine we shal observe from hence, it this: Viz.

To make known the Name of the Father to the truly humbled Soul,Doct. is a Work in a peculiar manner, appropriate to our Savior Christ.

I say, in a peculiar manner appropriate to our Savior; in that he takes it here unto himself, as a part of that Prerogative Royal, that doth appertain to him: I have made known; I wil make known: As though this Trade were wholly, and only in his hand; this know­ledg, [Page 456]and Science were only taught in Christ School, and is only to be learned there, and that by himself alone.

And this is done to the truly humbled Soul: For such only are to be conceived, as intended in the word, Them, [...], with an eye, and reference to that, which was mentioned in Verse 24. To them that thou hast given me. These were Beleevers; but if ye look at them, as under that Name, and special respect, in which they must be considered, when they become as proper Sub­jects, unto which the knowledge of the Name of the Fa­ther, comes to be manifested in the Order appointed by Christ: this is the most proper expression, that can be made, and the Holy Ghost speaks most exactly to in this behalf. So John 17.6. I have manifested thy Name to them, that thou gavest me out of the World. This, as hath formerly been proved, cannot imply Ele­ction properly: for that is meant in another Phrase in the same Verse: Thine they were, that is, by Election, and thou gavest them to me: This is an effect of Electi­on, and so distinct from it, else it would be a vain Re­petition, which cannot fal upon the Spirit of God, nor may by us be once imagined. Those who are given to Christ, are given him out of the World, so verse 6. that is, out of the corrupt World.

But it is not a Truth, nor Orthodoxal to affirm, that Election is out of the corrupt Mass.

Ye see then the Scope, and ful Purpose of the Do­ctrine propounded, and so of the Place in hand.

We shal hence proceed to the Explication, which we shal do by opening of three Things:

  • 1. What this Name is.
  • 2. What it is to make it known.
  • 3. Why this is properly given to our Savior.

1. What is meant by the Name of the Father.

The Name of God, in General signifies any thing, by which God comes to be known as a man is known by his Name, Exod. 20.7. But here it must of necessity be restrained to a narrower sense: But what that is, is hard to discover. We may thus gather in upon it, by the se­veral Circumstances in the Text.

Look backward to that which follows: It's the dis­covery of that Name, by which the Love, wherewith the Father Loved Christ, may be in them: and that can­not be the Name of his Wrath, and Justice of a Judg, and an Avenger: But it must be the Name of his Mercy, and the Name of his Fatherly Mercy also. For unless it were the Name of a Father, How could he love them, as he loved Christ? for he loved him as a Father. Be­sides, it is such Love as is extended to such as have pro­voked him, as the Father, and first Person in the Trini­ty, and to such as be miserable, and distressed: there­fore it must be Fatherly Mercy, that is, he must be the Father of Mercy, as wel as of men, that must extend such Love to such undeserving ones.

Again, As such, who are miserable, and forlorn in themselves, cannot have help, but through Mercy, and the Mercy of him, against whom they had finned: There must needs be a way how to interest them in this, and in­title them to this Mercy, which others, as miserable as themselves, do never share in, nor shal be made partakers of: For what avails it, that there is Mercy, if I cannot come at it?

And that which must convey this interest, can be no­thing on our parts by which we may deserve it, or pur­chase it, or once come to challenge it: It must come from God alone. As there is no mercy but in himself, so there is no way but by himself to interest any therein.

He being bound to none of the Sons of Adam, who had deserved nothing but wrath at his hand, by reason of their sinnes and provocations, If he had been pleased to have shut up the Bowels of his compassions, and re­served his mercy to himself, that none should ever have been able to make any claim thereunto, or have had any expectation thereof, he might have done it.

But as he had Fatherly mercies in himself: though he was free and bound to none: He out of his Fatherly mercy, that he might give others an interest therein, he did freely ingage himself, and al his sufficiencies, to procure and accomplish the good and welfare of such, as he should pluck out of themselves and the world, and put into the hands of Christ. And thus he becomes bound, and makes himself a debtor, to them, to whom nothing was due, both for the conveyance of al good to them, and continuance of al that good with them, that might be for their everlasting comfort. And thus his love might not only be offered, but comes to be and abide in them. That the love, wherewith thou hast loved me, may be in them.

So that its hence evident, that its the name of Father­ly mercy and Faithfulness, that is here to be understood, and the name that Christ would make known; the name of a Father, and a Father of mercies, who hath al good, and of faithfulness, who is ingaged to perform al that may be good and helpful to his servants.

Look we forward a little, the foregoing circumstance gives in the like evidence also. They know that the Father had sent him, and the making known of this name makes them know it.

This sending argues, As his Authority, that be can, So his Fatherly affection, that he wil, use his Authori­ty of Order and communication of work, and his faithful word (which he hath ingaged) to send Christ [...]o this end. And he being sent stands ingaged to answer the Order of the Father, and to act under the wil of him [Page 459]that sends to the ful accomplishment of this work, for the procuring of the welfare of the humbled Soul and then his love may be in them, and Christ in them also.

We have now got shore and gained thus much, that we understand what this name is, which is to be made known.

We shal open it in both the Particulars.

1. The Name of the Father of mercies containes four things.

1. That everlasting compassions are firstly and inde­pendently in him: he is the Father of them al: these yerning commiserations come out of his own Bowels. Isa. 63.15. Where are the sounding of thy Bowels? We should father compassion upon nothing we have, or do, or deserve, but only upon God. No good we have, or can do, can cause these: no evil we can do (except the sin against the Holy Ghost) can hinder these.

2. There is a generation and succession of mercies, which have been extended through al Ages, to al con­ditions of men, and that upon al occasions: al which are of the same House and pedegree, come from the same Father of mercies, are of the same line and lineage.

Al the sins of al his, which have been committed in all Ages and generations, with al the heightning Circum­stance [...] thereof, could never lessen, weaken, interrupt the course of these Fatherly compassions, much less exhaust them, and draw them dry. The Psalmist finds no end of them. Psal. 136.23, 24. For his mercy endureth for ever. Though temptations endure, which may annoy: yet his mercy ind [...]res for ever. And that which is especially to be attended is, that he works as the Father▪ (who hath been wronged and provoked) and yet as a Father pities us..

3. There be renewed and unknown Commiserations, which were never heard of before, yet may be expected, and wil certainly be provided for the good of those, that [Page 460]he wil do good unto. He is the Father of mercies, he begets fresh and new compassions every day and mo­ment, such as never saw light▪ nor happily ever entred into the apprehensions of the sons of men. Such things as wel looked mot for. Isa. 64.3. This props up the heart un­der overbearing pressures. Thou saiest, ordinary medicines wil cure ordinary and common diseases; but thy rebel­lions are not to be matched; no sinner, no sin, like thine.

Be it so, either in truth, or in thy conceiving: yet here be unheard of compassions, if thine be unheard of provocations. Lam. 3.22, 23.

4. He hath sent Christ on purpose to help those that cannot help themselves. Hos. 14.3. With thee the Fatherless finds mercy. With this Father of merc, es, the most helpless, Hopeless Orphane, & Fatherless Soul may find relief. He was sent on purpose not to cal the righteous; not the haughty and self confident, who pride themselves in their excellencies, conceive they can heal themselves with their own balsom, and that their own abilities wil work their own welfare. No: but was sent to cal the sinner, the broken-hearted and self-denying sinner. And he is come on this Errand, and wil not fail of his end, or the effecting of that, for which he was sent.

2. There is yet another piece of this name of the Father, which is his Faithfulness. As he is the Father of mercy and of al good in himself. so he hath freely and fully ingaged himself to accomplish the good and welfare of such, as be truly humbled, and he hath given to the Lord Jesus.

He hath passed his Word, and signified his Wil, to see al good done for them, that can be desired, as needful; al evil removed, which they can fear, as hurtful, and dangerous to their Souls: And in this the Psalmist tri­umphs, Psal. 56.4.10. In God will I praise his Word, &c. In the Lord wil I praise his Word. For what had [Page 461]it availed, that God hath al mercy in himself, unless he had ingaged his word, to improve and imploy that for my benefit; I had had no ground to claime any thing, nor Hope to expect any thing at his hand. Psal. 138.2. Therefore herein God hath magnified his word above al other his Name: he hath laid al his excellencies and sufficiency to pawn, and improved al, that the Salva­tion of an humbled sinner shal not miscarry.

This is the sweet that goes through all his names, and gives a pleasing relish unto al: When his word is in his Power, it wil preserve, not destroy &c. As he sent Christ for to save: so it is his wil, which he hath ex­pressed, and its the end which he intended, in furnishing our Savior with al fulness of power. Joh. 17.2. Thou haft given him power over all flesh, that he might give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. Now there is some ground for our hearts and Hopes to look unto, that this wil shal be accomplished, and this power improved. See how all the work of life proceeds on pleasantly. They who were thus given, they shal come: that is, beleeve. Joh. 6.37. and Joh. 17.8. When they come, then Christ keeps them. Joh. 17.12. Those whom thou hast given me I have kept and none of them is lost Nay he prayes the Father would keep them also. Yea he wil not overly keep them himself, but he intreats the Father: Keep through thine won Name, that is, the Name of thy Fatherly mercies, for in thy word those are also ingaged for their good. Joh. 17.11. Nay not only kep't, but quickned, increased, perfected in all Grace and not left, til he see them Crowned in glory. Joh. 6.39.

No wonder therefore that our Savior should resolve, ever to be making known this name of the Fathers mercy and Faithfulness, since it comprehends the beginning, continuance, end, and perfection of al we can have or Hope for, here or hereafter. Learn this, and learn all; Perfect this, and perfect al. All that Christ wil teach [Page 462]returnes to this: All that we can learn is Vertually con­tained in this: As a Father of mercies, he hath al, be­gets all good. Out of the Faithfulness of his word, he dispenseth all. Thus we see what the Name of the Fa­ther containes.

2. How doth Christ make known this?

Answ. This wil appear in a double work.

1. The Lord Christ spreads all those glorious excel­lencies before the Eyes of the Soul, darts in the Beams of those surpassing Beauties of mercies and compassions, and causeth all this glorious good to pass before us, (as he speaks to Moses) which at the first dazels and draws the Eyes of the Soul towards them, to gaze at such an amazing sight. 2 Tim. 1.10. — Brought life and immortality to light through the Gospel. Joh. 3.13. No man hath ascended up into these Heavenly appre­hensions but the Son of man, Who is in Heaven, he brings Heaven down to the Soul. Those were, like dazeling Colors laid forth in the greatest perfections, laid in a dark Room, not discerned: but the light came that acted them to the Eyes. The strangeness of the sight takes up the understanding, makes it stand won­dering and gazing. As Moses did by the Bush burning, he went neer to see that wondrous fight. Exod. 3.3.

2. But this is not al: He further sets on those excel­lencies by the discovery of some unexpected suitableness to the Soul and the condition thereof, as appointed and performed with intendment to his good who is given to Christ: Gods wil hath determined, Christ hath re­ceived al power for this very purpose to communicate them to him.

Its possible for God to dart in some kind of ravishing appearances of the excellencies of mercies, life, and Salvation, which pass by, as sudden lightning upon the [Page 463]understanding. So it was with Balaam, who had a glimpse of the glory of Heaven, and it stirred his affecti­ons for the while. Let me die the death of the Righte­ous, and let my last end he like his. Numb. 23.10. But it left nothing behind it, he is as far to seek as be­fore. As a man seeing his Face in a Glass, so these for­get what they were.

But these leave some intimation of some kind of special provision appointed for the purpose. My Message is to thee. Leaves some impression of Wisdom, to disco­ver the way of Grace for our own future good: that he comes to a guess of the way of life and peace: though he hath no perfect skil, yet he can say, it coasts within such a compass, it lies to that point, though he cannot readi­ly hit the Particular Path. As the poor Man said after God had broken his heart; It seised upon me like Thunder and Lightning: from that day forwards I could discern somthing in every Sermon.

This I take to be the meaning of that which torments Interpreters, and exercised mine own thoughts many a time, and its very difficult to cut the Hair, we wil speak a word to it. 1 Cor. 1.30. Christ is made of God to us Wisdom. We may come at it thus: 1. This Wis­dom cannot be justification, not sanctification, for those are mentioned immediately after: and therefore they are not there meant. Therefore it must be in vocation.

When Christ sets open the way

  • Of all the good that God wil do: And
  • Of the manner of his communicating of himself, for so the word [...]l [...] belongs to a Syllogisme, & impli [...] the laying open of the frame of things as they lie in inference, and sets it on upon the mind.

3. The Reason why this is properly given to our Savior.

1. Argument is taken from that relation he stands in unto the Father. The proper Nature of Relates is to manifest and give knowledge each of other. Math. 11.27. No man knowes the Father but the Son &c. Joh. 1.18. No man hath seen God at any time, but the only begotten Son.

2. Argument from the commission delegated unto Christ. He it is, Whom the Father hath appointed to communicate his counsel to his faithful Ones. Hebr. 1.2. — He hath spoken in these last daies unto us by his Son. Joh. 16.15. All that the Father hath are mine, therefore said I, He shal take of mine and shal shew it unto you. So that the Son hath al committed to him, and he com­municates to the Holy Spirit who speaks not of his own, but what he hath heard.

Thus we have the explication of the point: And the work of our Savior what he hath done. We shal refer, for application, to what follows in the uses hereafter made to the ensuing Doctrins.

The Second and next thing in order, it the work of our Savior and his profession and ingagment; What he wil do. I have declared thy Name; This he hath done: And he add's further, And I wil declare it.

Before I enter upon that, we shal Observe by the way, the conjoyning and coupling of these two works of our Savior together; I have, and I wil: What he had done in former times, and what he would do for future.

The Lord Christ extends the same Care at all times,Doct. to all his Servants, for their Eternal Good.

What he hath been, he is, and he wil be to the Faith­ful, in things which concern their Spiritual Happiness. He deals variously, and dispenseth in a differing manner, the Comforts, and Conveniences of the things of this life. He advanceth me, leaves contempt upon another: one is wretched; another impoverished; another spends his daies in health and peace, as Isaac; another is under dayly pressure, and tryals.

Because al these things, though good in themselves, yet they are under, and petty things, and therefore not good for every man. Diets are ever judged, and dire­cted to men, according to their temper, and disposition: That which is Cordial to one, as heating and nourishing Provisions to such as be weak, and languishing: i'ts hurtful to another, that is of a ful Body, and Feaverish distemper. Therefore the wise God, as a tender Fa­ther, and wise Physitian, he gives liberally to one, when he hold [...] another to a spare Diet. So God Diets his Ser­vants according to their Spiritual Disposition; they are not alike useful, and therefore he doth not in a like man­ner, and measure dispense them.

But when it comes to Faith in God, Repentance from dead Works, and such things as concern Gods Eternal Love, and so Eternal Life: there look what care God shewed in former times to his, he wil shew the like at al times to al, to provide for their Spiritual wel­fare.

Compare Gen. 28.15. with Hos. 12.2. He found him in Bethel, and there he spake with us. He spake to Jacob, who was dead and buried long before that Ge­neration. But what he spake to him, he spake to al the [Page 466]Saints, Exod. 13.21, 22. He took not away the Pil­lar of the Cloud by day, no [...] the Pillar of Fi [...]e by night. A Type of Christ, who by night and day, in al the Con­ditions, and times of a mans Pilgrimage, vouchsafes his guiding, and saving presence to his People. This also, the rock in the Wilderness typed our unto the Israelites, 2 Cor. 10.2. The Rock that followed, go whether they would, the Water out of the Rock followed them, and attended upon them for their dayly refreshing So doth the Mercy, and Truth of the Lord, follow his al the daies of their lives, Psal. 23.6. And it is the aim of the place, Heb. 13.8. Jesus Christ yesterday, and to day, and the same for ever, that is, in his saving, overshadowing, gui­ding presence to his Saints.


1. His Love is the same, and that wil set him on work by the like care, and endeavor to provide for their welfare. If any thing without him, had been a moving Cause of this Care, and resolute endeavor for their good, when that had altered or failed, this would have failed also. But his own Love, which only issues out of his own Bowels, and Bosom, made him do good at one time, and therefore to the same at al times, for it is the same, Jer. 31.3. With everlasting Love, I have loved thee: therefore I have drawn thee, therefore cal­led thee, therefore comforted thee, and wil continue so to do for ever, John 13. Having loved his own, he loved them to the end. In love, there is no lack of labor, pains, providence, to be unweariable, to further the good of that which is beloved.

2. The Engagement of our Savior, constrains him [...] point of Faithfulness, and Truth, which are laid to pawn, fully to accomplish whatever he hath undertaken for such, who are committed to his care, that at no time they do miscarry. O [...]her Sheep I have, and those I must [Page 467]bring, and they shall hear my Voyce. It was the Fathers Wil, that Christ should lose none that were given to him, John, 6.39. and it's Christs, All that thou hast given me, I have kept, and lost none of them, John, 17.12. So that he hath done the Wil of the Father, accor­ding to Compact and Agreement between them. Yea, it's Christs Wil, and Request to the Father, when he left the World, That the Father would shelter them under the shadow of his Wings, John, 17.11. And now I am no more in the World; but these are in the World, and I come to thee, holy Father, keep through thine own Name, those that thou hast given me. It is the Wil of the Father which sent Christ, that he should keep al his at al times, that none should miscarry: It's the Wil of Christ, and his Request to the Father, that he should preserve al the Faithful, that at no time, none should

3. The Relation continues the same at al times, and the Interest the Saints have in our Savior; al his Wis­dom, Mercy, Merits, and kindness are theirs: and there­fore they claim it, and so expect the benefit thereof at al times. The Spouse may claim the constant care of her Husband to provide for her, and supply her necessi­ties. The Child may look for the constant care of the Father to tender him in al his wants, as he hath done in any. So they plead, Isa. 63.16. Though Abraham forget, yet thou art our Father. He cannot forget himself, and his Faithfulness.

USE, 1. Of Instruction.

It teacheth us that Heavenly Skil and Dexterity to ga­ther in upon the goodness and kindness of the Lord Je­sus; and from the proof and experience of former Fa­vors, to lay in a Reversion of Blessing for future time. Lie at the catch, and take the advantage of the Lords gracious dealing with the soul. If we get but Gods Ear­nest, [Page 468]fetch the whol Bargain by it. If the Work of Sa­ving Grace, be an Engagement on Gods part, get one, and gain al. Paul is marvelous dextrous this way, to work upon the graciousness, and Truth of God, 2 Cor. 1.10. He hath delivered, and doth; q. d. I have him sure, I have got a Pawn, and earnest Penny: And he will deliver. He hath delivered me from the mouth of the Lyon, and he wil deliver me from every evil work.

When Naomi. knew how Booz had acknowledged that Engagement to do the part of a Kinsman, and knew the trust also, and sincerity of the Man, she thus concludes: Sit stil, my Daughter, until you know how the matter wil fal: For the man wil not be at rest, until he hath finished the thing this day, Ruth, 3. and last. So when thou hast Evidence of any work of Gods free Grace upon thy Soul, and that he hath engaged himself thereby; sit stil, the Lord Jesus wil not rest until he hath finished the work of Conversion, Sanctification, and Salvation, which he hath begun.

So the Prophet learns the Saints to make Inferences, and Collections of Comfort unto themselves, Psal. 48.12, 13, 14. Go about Zion, tell the Towers, mark well her Bull-works, take serious Consideration. This God is our God, and therefore collects, and wil be our God unto Death.

He hath humbled, and he wil humble us: he hath comforted, and he wil comfort us; he hath strengthened, and he wil enliven us for ever; he hath taught us, when we did not know him, and he wil teach us stil, when we do seek unto him.

USE, 2.

It's a Ground of unspeakable comfort, and sweet re­pose to al those, who have an interest in the Lord Christ, and are committed to his Charge. Thou art the dayly Care of Christ, therefore thou should'st be dayly com­forted. [Page 469]This was it, that fetched up the fainting heart of the Prophet, when he was at the lowest Eb, and at the greatest under in regard of himself, and al outward Comforts, Psal. 40.17. I am poor, and needy; desti­tute of the ordinary Comforts, and the meanest Helps that might supply his famishing Condition, so that he was fainting, and dying away for want of relief: no man looked after him, or bestowed a thought about him: Yet the Lord thinketh upon me; his Eye is over me, his heart is towards me, and care for my good.

Yet God is good to Israel, Psal. 73.1. He begins to come to himself: he was sinking in a fit of discourage­ment, seeing al things to go cross, and il with him: yet God is good. The World is naught, yet God is good: my heart is naught, yet God is good.

It may be, those that have most cause, and reason, and are most able, do not care for thee, or for thy good: thou dost not, or through thy weakness, canst not care for thy self, when thou art over-whelmed with distresses, either ignorant, doubtful, or unable to put forth that A­bility thou hast, being under over-bearing pressures: yet this may quiet, That he cares for thee, that can and wil help thee.

When my Father, and my Mother cast me off, then the Lord takes me up; his Fatherly Mercy, his Bowels of more than Motherly Compassion, wil be instead of al, yea, better than al, Psal. 27.10.

Nay, be it, that al helps are improved to the utmost, al thy skil and care laid out to the best advantage to pro­vide for thy good: yet at some times, yea, many times, they are too short, and scanted to procure thine own Comfort, either to prevent the evils that are approach­ing, or supply, or support thine own infirmities that do hinder in a Christian Course.

Quiet thine heart, though thy Contrivements fall short; that which is under the Care of Christ, that can­not miscarry. It's the ground which the Apostle gives [Page 470]of encouragement in a Christian Course, and that when Duties grow most difficult, and the Spirit most hopeless in it self ever to reach them, Heb. 13.7. Remember them who have the Rule over you, who have spoken un­to you, the Word of the Lord, whose Faith follow, con­sidering the end of their Conversation: Yea, it might he replied, There were able, and eminent Leaders, and Guides, their Experience long, their Graces glorious, their Abilities choyce; alas, there is no hope for us to keep pace with them, we are so weak, feeble, such Babes and Novices, that cannot go alone hardly: it's a likely matter that we should go after them. The Apostle ads, Jesus Christ, yesterday, and to day, and the same for e­ver, verse 8. q. d. It was not of themselves that they had any Grace or Abilities, but Jesus Christ had al, and gave al: It was not in the power, and might of any parts they have received, whereby they were carried on-ward in the Work of Faith, either in doing, or in suffering the good, and acceptable Wil of the Lord; but it was in the Power of the Might of Jesus whereby they were streng­thened therein. That Jesus is yesterday, and to day, and the same for ever; he did yesterday strengthen the Faith of Abraham, and David, and Paul; and he doth strengthen his now, and he wil strengthen his for ever: He hath taught, and doth teach, and wil teach for ever, the humble his Waies: He hath filled, he doth fil, and he wil fil for ever, the hungry and thirsty with good things, when they seek for his Mercy, Isa. 27. He keeps his Vinyard, and the least Graft in it, he keeps it night and day, and he waters it every moment; be therefore comforted every moment, thou who art preserved, and watered every moment, by the good hand of Christ, and wilt be so for ever, Psal. 142.4, 5, 7.

USE, 3. Of Direction.

It shews us whither to go for relief in our Spiritual [Page 471]Necessities: It's that which Nature suggests, and Rea­son perswades unto: Al men wil be sure to go thither, where they are sure of speed at al seasons. That's only to the Lord Christ, who is a Faithful Savior, and a sure Friend, 1 Pet. 5.7. Cast all your care on him, for he careth for you. When al men are altogether Vanity, feeble, and false, you know not where to have them; off, and on, weak as water, and uncertain as the wind; now they favor, anon they frown; love to day, and hate to morrow; they are but broken Reeds, not only fail us, but pierce us also.

But with our Savior, is no shadow of change, you may know where to have him, and what to expect from him. Men both prize, and use the Medicine that hath a probatum est with it: It wil not fail to cure, and re­move the Disease; the Salve that wil not fail to heal. It's so with the healing Mercy, and Faithfulness of Christ: So the Psalmist, They that know thy Name, they will trust in thee; for thou never failest them, Psal. 9.10. Mens care and kindness, is soon drawn dry, and spent, that they count it's enough to deny for fu­ture, because they have formerly done a Favor. What! say we, I have dealt so, done so formerly, ye do not expect I should do so alwaies. But it's otherwise with our Savior; he hath comforted, and he wil quicken; he hath taught thee in thy aberrations, and he wil teach thee stil.

Nay, Thou art so giddy, and un-stable, thou know­est not what to make of thy self; so off, and on, feeble and false to thine own Soul, and thine own Comforts, and there is no hold of that unsteady, and giddy heart: now promising, and then altering; now resolving, and then changing. If thou had'st trusted to thine own heart, thy Hope, and Comforts, and Confidence would have failed utterly.

But the Lord wil not suffer his Faithfulness to fail, notwithstanding al thy provocations against him, depar­tures [Page 472]from him, unkind dealings with him. Though thou hast failed, and forfeited al his Favors, yet he wil not suffer his Faithfulness to fail. As he was in former, so he is stil for future times, and wil he the same for e­ver; he hath, and he wil, after the same manner, for ever comfort thee. Though thou beest Faithless to him, and thy own Soul, he wil be Faithful to his own Word, and to thy Comfort.

USE, 4 Exhortation.

As Christ is to you, O be you so to him again. He is enlarged for your Eternal Good, be you so for his Glory. He never laies aside the care of your Comfort and welfare, never lay aside the care of his Commands. O! miserable would our lives be, if the Lord should leave us at uncertainties. It's the dregs of the Vengeance, the highest pitch, and the perfection of the Plagues that God threatens, Deut. 28.65. The Lord shal give thee a trembling heart, and failing of eyes, and sorrow of mind, and thy life shal hang in doubt before thee, and thou shalt fear day and night, and shalt have no assu­rance of thy Life; In the morning thou shalt say, Would to God it were night, &c. for the fear of thy heart. If so for our temporal Lives and Comforts, what would it be, if our Eternal Happiness, and Misery of our Souls were at this pass? Not when our Life, but our Salvati­on shal hang in doubt before us: Whether God wil comfort us, or for ever ruinate us? Whether the Lord wil once pity, or for ever forsake us? If he should give us trembling of heart, failing of eyes, and sorrow of mind, and we should have no hold of Gods Favor or Assurance. I shal one day perish, and look every day to have the Wrath of the Lord to come out against us, or else to leave us to our feebleness, and the malice of Satan, and that at last, God wil leave us utterly in the hands of Hel, how miserable would this Condition be?

But God doth not, wil not deale thus with us: he comes to certainties with us; we may know there to have him. Yesterday, and to day, and the same for ever. Oh let us be the same for ever to the Lord Jesus. He hath given us two immutable things, that we might have strong consolation: let God know where to find us, what to make of us. Fickleness and Instability is most loathsom to the Eye and distastful to the heart of the Almighty. I would thou wert either Hot or Cold. Because thou art luke-warm, I wil spue thee out of my Mouth. Rev. 3.15, 16. He that is profane he may be convinced and made better. He that is zealous is approved and pleasing to the Spirit of God. But the luke-warm wil not be brought to see his evil, nor yet wil he like to be made better. Therefore God abominates him.

He is the Author and Finisher of your faith: The bottom and the top-stone, He wil not leave you til he hath fulfilled al his goodness.

Leave not you, til you have perfected holiness in his fear. 2 Cor. 7.1. He is at al times the same to thee. Be thou at al times the same to him. Not by [...]its, & starts and aguish qualms, like the morning dew. Psal. 62.8. Trust in him at al times. I have loved him, and I will love him: I have feared him, and I wil fear him for ever. And when I say that, I say three things.

1. Make it the main end and Errand of thy life to suit Gods mind and do his service. Let this be the maine stream that may carry al. As it was Gods wil to fend Christ: and Christs wil to accomplish this. This is the wil of the Father that sent me, that those which he hath given me I should loose none. So let i [...] be thy wil also. It was Pauls, I pass not, put nothing into the balance, let nothing come into comparison nor competi­tion, nay not into consideration. That I may smash my Course with joy. Its my Meat and Drink saith he. Let [...]t be as thy daily Bread, as thy food; have no wil [Page 474]but this. So Barnabas perswaded. Act. 13.23. To cleave to God with a decree of heart. Decree this, set it down, and determine this for a conclusion, that ad­mits no exception or alteration. My God I must have, my god I wil have, his commands I have, and must and wil obey. Whether I shal have honor and credit: whether I shal please my self, or carnal Reason or cor­rupt desires, friends, or world, that I pass not for I must please the Lord: That I set down for a decree.

2. Let al make way to this, and work for this.

So Christ with us. Al things work together for our good. So make our Sorrows our miseries, our com­forts, our peace, prosperity: whatever we have in the world besides, make them al work together for this, to further our obedience. As the Marriner tacks about, useth Cross winds, all, to further his voyage.

It was the Fathers wil, and Christs work, that he should lose none, and he did lose none; he left Heaven, his Honor, his Life, nay the sense of his Fathers Love: but he lost not one of the poorest Saints: held them in his hand, God forsook him, he would not forsake them. Let the power of darkness pluck away ease, and peace, yea his life and al. My Soul it heavy unto the Death, Yet he would not suffer them notwithstanding al their Malice, Wrath, Rage, Subtilty, to pluck one of his out of his hands.

So do thou. Lose Credit, Comfort, Peace, Pro­sperity, yea thy Life; but lose not one of Gods Com­mands, but obey it: not one Promise, but trust in it: He hath kept thee at al times: Keep thou the word of his patience. Thou gavest them me, saith Christ, and I have kept them. So say thou; Thou gavest me these commands and I have obeyed them; these promises, and I have trusted in them. Not my wil, as Natural, saith Christ, to be preserved, but thy wil, as God, that man may be redeemed: So say thou, not my wil, as [Page 475]Man, as Father, as Master, as Servant: not my wil which would have mine ease, and Profit, and Credit: But thy Wil be done.

3. Be unmovable in the Work of Christ.

So our Savior, though he suffer the power of Dark­ness to pluck a way his Honor, his happiness and Life: yet he held his Children in his Armes, and would not suffer any to take them out of his hand. So deal thou in like manner; Let Devils and Men pluck away thy Credit, and dishonor thee, thy Wealth, and impoverish thee; yet let them not pluck away any one of Gods commands of Christs Promises from thee. Christ put a necessity upon it, I must bring these sheep: lay thou the like necessity upon thy Soul. It is a rule of Christ, I must obey it, Christ I must love, and fear, and follow. Do not retire, strike Sail, turn back, nay do not stop in the way, but go on: Its not necessary to live, but to love Jesus.

We have done with this Point from the connection of the words. We shal now proceed to the other part of that work, which our Savior professeth and in­gageth himself unto that he will further do, for time to come.

I will make it known.

The profession and resolution of our Savior to pro­vide for their further inlightening and inlargement in this knowledg, implies two things.

1. What the wants of the Saints are, as touching this knowledg.

2. What the care and ingagement of our Savior is to supply the same.

The first is here supposed, and that by necessary in­ference. For had they attended the ful measure of this knowledg, that need hath our Savior to make known [Page 476]more? if they had been perfect in the skilful understan­ding of that lecture, what need was there that our Savior should be dayly learning and informing them?

Its plain therefore, though they had much of this knowledg, there was yet much wanting unto them, of which they had, as dayly need, so dayly use of.

Hence we have two Points of Doctrin.

  • 1. There is much wanting in the ful knowledg of Gods Name in the most able Saints.
  • 2. Christ lends dayly supply of knowledg to them, according to their dayly needs.

To the First. There is much wanting in the ful know­ledg of Gods Name in the most able Saints.

The most knowing Christians, such as may seem to be in the highest form, neer our Savior, taught and trained up under his Wing, yet have need, that more of the Name of the Father should be made known to them. The Point is plain in the words, we shal need say no more to evidence it from the text; but address our selves to the further explication of it. What this Name is, Viz. The Name of Gods Fatherly love and mercy and Faithfulness. And what it is to know it, or to have it made known, we have opened formerly, when the Lord Christ causeth al the good and incomparable excellency [Page 477]of this Fatherly mercy and Faithfulness to pass before the Eye of the Soul, and sets on that suitable sweetness so effectually upon it, as that it affects and draws the heart to look that way by the Eye of Faith: so to Eye it, as to own it, and fasten upon it. This is the know­ledg here meant, and much of this is wanting, even in those that are most eminent. Its a general ground which takes in the Particulars with advantage.

When the holy man Job laid forth at large the waies of God in his Providence, limmed out to the life his excellencies, he ends with this, and vailes as it were, what he was not able to express. These are part of his waies, but how little a portion is heard of him. Job. 26▪14. q. d. There is little of that unconceivable ex­cellency heard of, or reported, though the Earth and Heaven be ful of his goodness, and his mercy over al shines with the greatest lustre in al his works; yet this is but a little portion of him, and we know little of this. And hence Moses, who conversed Face to Face with God, unto whom the Lord did familiarise himself, as to a friend, yet he finds his necessity most here, and makes it his chief suit, if I have found Favor in thine Eyes, Lord shew me thy glory. If ever he shewed him­self to a mortal man, it might seem he did in an especial manner express himself to him. And therefore it was his preheminence above the Prophets to whom he would make known himself in a vision and dream; My Servant Moses is not so: to him I wil speak Mouth to Mouth ap­parently, Visibly, familiarly, and openly. Numb. 12.8. Deut. 34.10. And yet he begs this as the greatest honor. Lord shew me thy glory. And Gods answer shews his Aim. Exod. 34.5, 6. I will cause my good­ness to pass before thee; strong, gracious, merciful, aboundant in goodness and truth &c. The greatest part of that we know is the least part of that we know not. And therefore Paul desires to come to supply that which is lacking in their Faith; and this is the [Page 478]knowledg especially Aimed at, wherein we shal in­quire.

  • 1. In what this want appeares.
  • 2. The Reason why there is left such.

1. This want appeares and is made good in four Particulars.

1. Much is wanting in regard of incompre­hensible and boundless greatness of this Fatherly mercy and Faithfulness, which cannot be comprehended by the best ability of the strongest Faith or spiritual under­standing. Adepth that cannot be fathomed. A light unto which we cannot approach: only we are gathering in somthing nearer and groping somwhat more, as we attain to the strength and growth of Faith. Job. 11.7. Canst thou by searching find out the Almighty to per­fection? it is higher than Heaven, what canst thou do? deeper than Hel, what canst thou know? the measure thereof is larger than the Earth, and broaden than the Sea. Therefore the Psalmist instead of com­prehending, he falls into admiration of this mercy. Psal. 31.19. Oh how great is thy goodness, that thou hast laid up for them that fear thee, and laid out for them that trust in thee, before the sons of men! We are not able to value the goodness that is laid out in the waies of his providences and Fatherly dispensations to­wards us. But the treasuries of compassions that have been hoarded and laid up from al eternity, Oh how great! If the stock be so large that the Father puts into the hand of a Child when he is now in his non-age and setting up: what wil the whole estate and revenews be, when he come to his inheritance? therefore the Lord shewes the infinite disproportion betwixt his thoughts of goodness towards his; and the narrowness of their conceivings to teach at the measure thereof. Isa. 55. As high as the Heaven is above the Earth, so far are my thoughts above yours. A point or center that is less than any quantity, and the great Circumference [Page 479]that is the largest of al quantity.

2. Much is wanting in regard of the clear discerning of that, which is some measure we do conceive; much of this Name yet conceived, we know not, and that which we do know, is dimly, and in a dark manner. Its a strange Check of our Savior to Philip, upon his request expressed, Joh. 14. Shew us the Father and it shal suffice us. Verse, 8. Our Savior by a sharp interrogation casts a secret shame of feebleness and heed­lesnes upon him. What? have I been so long with you, and yet dost thou not know me Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father also. And if ye do but cast your Eye upon the 7. Verse. Ye wil perceive that they did know the Father and had seen him. And yet Philip desires, he might be shewed, as though they had never known nor scene. The issue from hence will be here, that its possible for a Christian to see the Father, and in a sense to converse with him; and yet he needs to have him made known whom he knows, and to have him shewed, whom he sees. So he is Job. The Lord pas­seth by and we perceive him not, he speaks once and twice and we hear him not. That as it was said of the Disciples Luk. 24.16. Their Eyes were held, that they did not know him: they did know discerningly whom they saw, and with whom they did familiarly converse, and therefore its added. Verse, 31. Their Eyes were opened and they knew him. So it is with the Eye of our understanding, in the right conceiving of the mistery of this Fatherly mercy and Faithfulness of God; though we converse familiarly with this goodness of the Lord, yet because our apprehensions are marvailous feeble and dim, they must be further cleared before we can know, and discerne that we do know. 1 Cor. 13. We see through a vail and therefore need to be helped to see what we see? to fee more fully what we see feebly and imperfectly.

3. Much is wanting in regard of the experience of this [Page 480]Fatherly Faithfulness which as yet they never found, or having formerly found it, they are now deprived of it.

Some as yet have never found it. For the Lord dis­penseth his favors in the fittest season, and so as his Ser­vants have most need, and may make most improvement of. So Gen. 22.14. In the mount of the Lord it shal be seen. And Rom. 5.4. Patience worketh experi­ence and Hope maketh not ashamed because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts. Verse, 5. God steps in seasonably, and gives proof of his Fatherly Care. Herb. 4.16. We find Grace to help in time of need. As the Father reserves a special favor for his Child to a season, a morsel, a bit to give him at a turn.

Some have formerly found it by experience, but are now deprived of it. Hence is that of the Prophet Da­vid, Psal. 63.2. To see thy power and thy glory, so as I have seen thee in the Sanctuary. So again Quicken me as thou art wont. Psal. 89.49. Where are those former loving kindnesses? The lower the Eo the greater the flow. God withdrawes the expressions of his Favor, that they may be made more fit and have them more aboundantly. For a little while I have hid my Face, but with everlasting kindness wil I have Mercy on thee. Isa. 54.8.

4. Much is wanting, in regard of that ful as­surance, which they were promised, and do desire, but yet could never attain unto.

So Heman Psa. 88.14, 15. Lord why castest thou off my Soul? why hidest thou thy Face from me? I am afflicted and ready to die from my youth up: while I suffer thy terrors I am distracted. Thy fierce wrath goeth over me; thy Terrors have Cut me off. They came round about me dayly like Water: they compassed me about together. Verse, 16, 17. So David, Mine Eyes fail for looking for thy Salvation: Ob when wilt thou comfort me? Psal. 119.82.

Much then is wanting, in regard of what may be known; in regard of the cleer discovery of what we do know; in regard of the Experience we have had, and want; in regard of the Assurance we seek, and do not attain.

2. The Reasons hereof are two.

1. Is taken from the Condition of the Saints, while they are in this vale of Tears: They are as Babes in the Womb, or at the best, as Children born; but in their non-age, and tender yeers: and therefore in rational proceedings, their abilities and performances must car­ry some resemblance and proportion: they must be at­tended with Child-like weaknesses, and imperfections. So the Apostle disputes, 1 Cor. 13.11. When I was a Child, I spake as a Child, I understood as a Child, I thought as a Child. Their Speech is not ful, their un­derstanding is feeble, their thoughts are under and low, looking at poor and mean things, such as be most fami­liar, and liable to the Sences: things of depth and diffi­culty, as they cannot conceive them, so they do not for the most part attend them, because they are beyond their reach.

So it is with our Spiritual Child-hood. The things of God and Grace, which are most easie, and openly fa­miliar, we are most exercised, and taken up withal; but the great Mysteries of Godliness, the unsearchable Riches of Mercy, and the deep things of God, we are not able upon the sudden to search into. Our Savior gives this Reason to his Disciples; I have many things to say, but ye cannot yet receive them. A Child that is in the lower Form, happily entring into his Latin, he is not able to carry away his Lecture of Greek, not to touch difficult things of Phylosophy; but his Principles and Abilities must have time to ripen, before he be set up into so high a Form. So here.

2. Is taken from the freeness of Gods Dispensation, in [Page 482]whose pleasure it is, to give when, and what he wil; and after what manner. And hence he doles his Grace, an­swerable to the growth he hath appointed, each man to come unto, and in what time, Eph. 4.13. Till we all come in the Ʋnity of the Faith, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ. Some are of a larger Stature, and grow more speedily than o­thers; some are of a less, and stand at a stay for a sea­son, until the Lord by the effectual working of the Spirit, make them to grow, and so they encrease with the en­creasings of God, Col. 2.19.

USE, 1. Of Instruction.

Hence see the Reason of those mis-apprehensions, that the dear, and faithful Servants of the Lord have, of the Fatherly Mercy, and faithfulness of God towards them. They want much knowledg of this incomprehensible sweetness, and goodness of Gods Nature; and that is the Reason they missjudg, and mistake so much, and make such unkind Constructions, and maintain such ground­less surmizes of his Fatherly kindness.

He that is jealous, and fearful of the Love and Favor of another, who is of tried Truth and Sincerity, al men wil easily, and readily give him the Reason; because he knows him not. So here, It's because we know no [...] God.

These misconceivings of God, may be referred to two Heads:

1. When they are under pressures, and necessities, and miseries march in upon them, the Lord seems, like an angry Father, to withdraw himself. They present­ly sit down discouraged, and conclude, as they, Isa. 49.14. Sion hath said, The Lord hath forsaken me, my God hath forgotten me: The Lord answers, from the consideration of those Fatherly Compassions which rest in his Bowels; Can a Woman forget her Child, that [Page 483]she should not have compossion on the Son of her Womb? these may, yet I wil not. Psal. 89.8. Who is like to thee, or to thy Faithfulness round about thee? it's round about him, per omnes circuitus.

But I have dealt carelesly, yea, unkindly, and faith­lesly with him, and grieved the eyes of his Glory by day­ly provocations. True, thou hast first broken with him, and thou mayest see, and know thy falsnels; but thou dost not know his Faithfulness, and Fartherly mer­cy. Psal. 89.33. Nevertheless, my loving kindness, I will not take away from him, nor suffer my Faithful­ness to fail. Though he may deserve it, and I may just­ly do it; yet I wil not suffer, &c. Thou knowest thine own falsnels, and wretchedness, who keepest not touch with God, but failest; yet my Faithfulness, and my Mercy I wil keep with him, verse 24. And my Cove­nant shal stand fast, verse 28. Thou knowest not the heart of a Heavenly Father, and therefore thou so mis­judgest.

2. They conceive their Sins so many, and so hainous, that it's beyond the compass, and bounds of his Fatherly Compassions to remit, and pardon. Thou dost not know what these Bowels of a Father are, and therefore thou dost not judg aright, what he can, and wil do. When Ephraim bemoaned his sin, God yerneth tow­ards him, and bemoaneth him; though he doth not hear God, yet God hears him, Jer. 31.18. I have heard Ephraim bemoaning himself thus; Thou hast chastised me, and I was chastised.

See how gods Bowels turn within him, verse 19. My Bowels are turned within me; I wil surely have mercy upon him. Mercy is mourning over thy Soul, when thou art mourning for thy sin. True, could I re­pent; but I have been smitten, and yet walked after the way wardness of my heart; so that I dare not look upon my sin; and I cannot look to Heaven, because of my guilt: I know not how I can be pardoned.

Because thou dost not know the Name of this Father, and this Mercy; see, and consider what it can do, that thou canst not conceive. Isa. 57. I was angry, and smote him, and he went away, verse 17. I have seen him, and his waies, and wil heal him: I wil lead him also, and restore Comforts unto him, and to his mour­ners; q. d. I have seen him and his waies, though he can neither see me, nor himself; though he hath woun­ded himself, I wil heal him: I wil make him mourn, and others with him, and comfort both.

Obj. But I cannot think it.

Ans. This Mercy can do, what thou canst not think. Isa. 55.8, 9. My thoughts are not your thoughts, &c. for as the Heavens are higher than the Earth, so are my waies higher than your waies, and my thoughts than your thoughts. And thou wilt find it relieving, when thou dost least look for it. True, I have found him somtimes in desperate streights relieving me, when I was linking, and past hope, my head under wa­ter: when al his billows were running over, then com­forting, and supporting me.

This is but a Lightening before my Death, he wil leave me at last: it's but a Reprieval before some more heavy Plague and Condemnation. God hath a Secret purpose to hasten my ruine, even by his Bounty, which I have had, and abused, I shal one day perish by the hand of Saul, 1 Sam. 27.1.

Thou hast these hard thoughts of God, because thou dost not know the heart of a Father, and his never-fai­ling Faithfulness.

Thou hast been many yeers preserved, why perish one day? He doth thee no harm, why should'st thou think he intends thee any? He hath said, I wil not leave thee, nor forsake thee, Heb. 13.5.

USE, 2. Of Direction.

Be willing to hear, and willing to follow the Directi­on of such who are Gods Favorites, and acquainted with this Name of his, and that by plentiful Experience. There was never yet a blind man known, but was wil­ling to be guided: never man ignorant of his way, that was not phrenitick, but was willing to be directed where he was in doubt.

The Rules are Two.

1. The Counsel thou art not able to gainsay with Reason, know, Thou oughtest in Reason, and accor­ding to Rule, to submit unto it.

I do not think it, I cannot beleeve it, I much suspect and fear.

Away with such Dreams, these are al but pangs of way wardness.

It is made a Point of Religion, but it is a delusion, to keep our complaints, and keep our discouragements. Keep neither, but keep the Direction.

Quest. But must I put out mine Eyes, to see by a­nothers Spectacles? or pinion my self to anothers Ap­prehensions?

Answ. Thou dost not follow the man, but the light that is brought by him: Captivate thy Carnal Reason to Gods Counsel, Isa. 50.10. Who is there a­mong you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voyce of his Servant? &c. Let him stay himself upon his God. See therefore God in that, and possess thy heart with a holy fear, not to dare to cavil, or by carelessness, not to attend; as Sampson, be led to the main Pillar.

2. When thou hast no word against thy self, let no wants, miseries, weaknesses, unworthiness, hinder thee from adventuring thy self upon his Fatherly Mercy, and [Page 486]expecting supply from it. And who knows but God wil shew thee mercy? Thou dost not know the height, the length, the breadth, the depth of his Mercy; and who knows but God may extend his Fatherly Love, and Faithfulness unto thy Soul?

The Second Doctrine. The Lord Christ lends dayly Direction,Doct. and and Discovery of Mercy according to the dayly need of his Faithful Servants.

See it in the Pillar of Cloud and Fire, Exod. 13.21. So also in his Care to his Vinyard, watering it every moment, Isa. 27. Not to al at once; not to al alike: but as in the gathering of the Manna, he that gathered the least, had no lack. So every one, that which answers his present Condition, Psal. 21.3. Thou preventest me with blessings of goodness; takest measure, and sui­test every ones wants.

In the opening, attend,

  • 1. The Measure he takes in the supply.
  • 2. The Manner how he doth it.

I. The Measure he takes in this supply, appears in Four thing:

  • 1. When we are doubtful in our way, he directs us; when we are at a stand, and know not which way to take, we then have a voyce behind us, Isa. 30. And thine Ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, &c. And Chap. 42.16. I will bring the blind by a way that they know not, I will lead them, &c,
  • 2. Suitable to our needs, he supplies, Isa. 40.11. [Page 487] Carries the Lambs in his Bosom: Where there is most want, he lends most supply.
  • 3. What is most Serviceable to our occasions, he furthers, and sets forward with success; he doth for us, as occasion doth require. My Grace is sufficient, 2 Cor. 12.9. then when the shock was, he steps in: his Faith­fulness is the Magazine, furnisheth us fully; he furni­sheth with Grace suitable to our Service, (Phil. 4.13. I can do all things) with Patience in Journeys; Cou­rage in Difficulties; in the Fire, and in the Water, Isa. 43.2. and 25.4.
  • 4. Al these in the best Season, Heb. 4. last, in the time of need, Isa. 41.17. when the four hundred and thirty yeers were expired, that very day, Exod. 12.41.

II. The Manner how.

  • 1. Christ hath purchased al at the hands of the Fa­ther, and so is become the Head of the Church, John, 16.10. For had not Christ been possessed of Grace, as our Surety, and purchased the Grace of Adam lost, the corrupt Nature of Man had been uncapable of Mercy.
  • 2. He sends the holy Ghost, who takes of his, and gives to us, John, 16.15. He shal take of mine; he doth not take of the Fathers immediately, but Christ of the Father, he of Christ, John, 14.26.

The Reason is, Because al is summ'd up in this:

1. Al depends upon this; I mean, upon the Name of his Fatherly Love, and Faithfulness. I speak of it now, as it issues peculiarly from the special manner of the Fa­thers subsistence, and work. For therein the out-go­ings of the Deity are firstly discerned, and lastly resol­ved. Especially this is to be attended, because the Fa­ther was directly offended by the sin of Adam; and therefore it must come firstly in order from him, to ap­point, and to accept a Surety for the Conveyance of Grace and Mercy. And herein lies the out-going of the [Page 488]God-head first; I look at the manner of his working. The Father works of himself, the Son from the Father, the Holy Ghost from both. So that had not the Fa­ther moved, or put forth this work, the Son would not, the Holy Spirit would not, because they work in order from the Father, John 5.19. and 12. and last verse. So John 16.13. Christ speaks what he hears from the Father, the Spirit what he hears from Christ.

2. Al is contained in this, and from this communica­ted to the Saints. Hence the Covenant of Grace, which is here first attended, The Promise of God in Christ before the World was, 2 Tim. 1.2. This was in Christ, 2 Tim. 1.9. God fed the Patriarchs with this, nothing but the dayly repetition, and consideration of the Cove­nant, therefore blessing goes with it, is discovered by it: I will bless thee. In thee shall all the Nations of the Earth be blessed. He hath sworn that he wil bless us, Luke 1.72, 73. that is, he wil be a God in Covenant.

This is the Cause why God so appears: I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob. And this is the Ground of our Resurrection. God is not the God of the Dead, but of the Living. God remembers his Covenant with us, and for us.

Collections hence, are many.

This Truth, this Tree is loaded with abundance of Fruit: We wil shake it a little, and see what is most ripe, and most readily offers it self to our Observation, for our benefit; that each man may gather, and take that which may be most for his own Help, and Sa­tisfaction.

1. Collection.

Hence it's cleer, The best of the Saints, men of choy­cest Graces, and best Abilities, as touching the right Ap­prehension of the mysterious Deeps of Gods Fatherly Mercy, the live meerly upon a dayly dependance, while they have a day to live in this World, The Lesson is so hard and difficult, that our Savior is dayly spelling and repeating, alwaies teaching, and yet there is more to be taught; more knots to be untied, secrets to be open­ed. As to Nathaniel, John 1.50. Thou shalt see grea­ter things than these. And therefore David, when he was a Scholler of the highest Form, he craves the fur­ther help of Christ, because the work was too hard, Teach me the way to thee, thy Spirit is good, Psal. 143.8, 10. Open mine Eyes, that I may see the wonders of thy Law. There were yet more wonders to be seen, though he had seen wonders al his daies. This Name is Wonderful, as the Angel to Manoah.

Beside, The Lesson is marvelous large, we had need be dayly learning, and yet we shal never come to the end of it, before we come to the end of our daies. As men who travel in the main Ocean; they see nothing but Water, and yet see neither Side nor Shore, Brim nor Bottom, and there is more Water to be seen.

The saving Knowledg of this Name of Gods Fatherly Mercy, when it fils the mind, as the Waters cover the Sea. Habb. 2.14. we may sail here in dayly search, and when we know, yet there is somthing stil beyond our knowledg, as Eph. 3.19. That we know the Love of Christ, that passeth knowledg.

This Name of Gods Fatherly Mercy, is like that Book, Rev. 5.1, 2. So many Leaves, and so thick written, that we cannot turn over the Pages; much less able to come to the ful knowing, and conceiving of it. So it is here.

The Name of Gods Mercy and Faithfulness, its writ so thick in al the waies and works of God, in al the ordinances, Nay in al the dispensations of God and his operations, from election to our glorification, affords so many ful vollums, and so many fresh editions. That we are stil new to seek, unless the Lord Christ be pleased further to make known these unto us.

As the thing to be known is darke and difficult: So we are shallow in our apprehensions. As our Savior com­plained of his own, brought up under his own Wing. Luk. 24.25. O Fools and slow of Heart to know these depth's of Gods Grace and Mercy. Our under­standings, like narrow mounh'd Vessels, can take in little and that in a long time, though never so much be discovered and laid before us. And Therefore our Sa­vior is constrained to deal with us, as Masters with their Schollers which are dul and heavy of apprehension, ever pointing at the word, and putting the Fescue to the Letter: Line upon Line, and precept after precept, here a little, and there a little, as the Prophet Isa. 28.10. So it is with such Babe-like feeble ones as we be, though we have Daily help, yet we have daily need of new help to be continued to us. As little ones, they must be taken up, dressed, and tended daily, because they are helpless in themselves.

But that which is the maine of al. The very Terms of the Covenant, and the Office of our Savior, and the condition of the State of Grace calls for this. For al the Treasures of Wisdom and knowledg are hid in Christ, and he keeps the Keyes in his own hand and Bo­som, and gives out our pittance and allowance what he sees fit. We need our dayly direction and instruction in the things of Grace and eternal life, more than our dayly Bread.

The Body needs the constant direction of the Eye and advise of the head, for every thing it doth, and that every moment. Its thus in the natural, its the same in the [Page 491]spiritual and mistical Body: So the Apostle 2 Cor. 3.5. Of our selves, as of our selves, we are not sufficient to think a good thought, but our sufficiency is of God. Without me ye can do nothing. Joh. 15.4, 5. He hath taught you in the morning, he must teach you at Noone, and at Night also. He hath cleared up our doubts, he must help us in the next again, or els we shal be to seek as much as ever. He must Water us every moment.

Adam hath the staff and stock in his own hand, and he lost al, and himself and his too. Therefore now the Lord Jesus keeps the stock in his own care, in his own hand, gives us such allowance, as he sees fit, suitable for our good.

As Fathers, when they see their Sons to lavish out their Patrimony, and grow licencious; they keep the revenewes and state in their own hands, only allow them some yearly pension or annuity for their relief. So here our Savior makes us live, not of our yearly, but our daily, yea hourly annuities.

That Grace that helped thee the last month, the last week, the last day, the last morning, how to see God, how to close with him, and depend upon him, and gain assurance from him, wil not serve thee for the next occasion happily. Either the work is more difficult, the way more dark, thine own indisposition makes thee more unfit, thy temptations do more oppose, thy corruptions grow more active and violent, or thy unskilfulness, forgetfulness bring thee to a loss, that thou shalt not be able to see the way. So that as Christ hath made known, so he must make known for the present, and so for the future.

The beggar when he hath got his almes one day, he lives of that and spends it, and he must have a new almes, as a new day, he is as fresh to seek, and as free to beg, as ever. Christ is Gods Almner and we are his beggars. So Paul, He hath delivered, doth deliver, wil deliver. [Page 492]Hath made known, doth make known, wil make known. As the Moon, every new Month, nay every hour, and minute must receive new light from the Sun. So here, Psal. 36.9. In thy light we shal see light.

2. Collection.

Its easie with Christ to darken the evidence of Gods love and mercy to the Soul, and to cloud al our know­ledg we have, even in the clearest day: to put us to a loss, that we may be to seek for our assurance and knowledg of Gods Fatherly goodness, when we think we are most sure of it.

Though he hath made known the name of the Father formerly, unless he stil make it known for future, un­less he stil renew the knowledg we have, we shal not be able to know what he have known. So Elihu profes­seth Job 34.29. When he giveth quietness, who then can cause trouble? and when he hideth his Face, who then can behold him? whether it be done against a nation or against a man only. q. d. Its not for want of skil that men do not compass this knowledg for their numbers or abilities never so many, even a whole nation God can darken them al. And therefore its said, 1 King. 10.3. When the Queen of Sheba came to try Solomon with some questions, he told her al, nothing was hid. So that God can hide even the glimmering Starr-light of the knowledg of Human things from men: Much more easie is it to conceive, how this may be done in these high, Heavenly, hidden mysteries; when its hard to know them, when they are made known to us. How impossible, if the Lord wil with-hold them from us? al our dexterity and Wisdom wil do nothing, if Christ wil not direct. Therefore the Church complain­ed, Lam. 3.44. That God had covered himself with a cloud, that their Prayers could not come at him. When God sent darkness into Egypt, it was not al the [Page 493]Fires and Candles that could give any light, but they sate three daies and three nights and stirred not out of their places. Exod. 10.23. If the Sun of Righteousness wil with-hold or withdraw his beams it wil be dark night with us in our doubtings and dismayings, notwithstan­ding, al the Learning, yea, the experiences also we have had. Yea Mercy and Grace may be present with us, and yet not be perceived. Philip saw the Father, and yet knew not what he saw.

Beware here of three things, which the Scripture men­tions as the main Cause why.

  • 1. Take heed of Carnal Confidence and trusting too much to Earthly Contentments. Psal. 30.6.7. I said in my prosperity I shal never be moved, Lord by thy favor, thou hast made my mountain to stand strong: Thou did'st hide thy Face, and I was troubled. When we turne our Eyes and hearts to the world, God turns away his gracious respect he expressed towards us. He wil make his presence welcome, or he wil withdraw. Math. 23.38. Ye shal see me no more, til ye shal say, blessed is he that cometh in the Name of the Lord. And therefore our Savior settles himself in this, Math. 11.25. I thank thee O Father, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 1 Joh. 2.16.
  • 2. Beware of Resistance of the Truth, when it is made known. If ye wil not have his word to direct you, ye shal not have the knowledg of his Mercy, that may support and refresh you. When the spirit of truth comes to lead us into al truth, then it shal take of Christs and shew to us. Joh. 16. and Joh. 17.8. I have given them thy word, and they have Received it, and they have known that thou hast sent me. This re­ceiving wil let in this knowing. Revel. 3.20. If any wil open — I will come and Sup with him. 1 Joh. 2.24. If the word that ye have heard abide in you, ye [Page 494]also shal continue in the Son and in the Father, so Verse, 27.
  • 3. Take heed of Sleighting and making little ac­count of any of the Commandements of the Lord; Pre­sume not to neglect the least, or tamper with any sinful distemper, or give way to infirmities or passions. So Jonah 2.8. He that trusteth in Lying vanities for sak­eth his own Mercy. That is the mind of the context. Joh. 14.23. If any man love me, be wil keep my words and my Father wil love him, and we wil come unto him and make our abode with him. And Verse, 21. I will manifest my self to him; that is, keep him in his purity, keep him in his power as we keep liquors, that they loose none of their life; they drink lively, and quick, as when new put up.

3. Collection.

The Faithful should increase in the knowledg and right apprehension of this Name of Gods Fatherly mer­cy: and it is their own fault, if they do it not, for els they might. For where can there be any cause of none Proficiency found, but in our selves? Christ hath undertaken the work, and who more able than he, who is the Wisdom of the Father, and came out of his Bosom? and therefore is able to make known those Bo­som secrets of Gods Fatherly Love, which never did see Sun, and reveal them.

Yea he is as willing as able, and ready to communi­cate these unknown depths of Gods indeared affecti­ons.

Yea you that are faithful, you have experience of his sufficiency this way: you have a pawn in your hand, a real proof of what he hath done, when you were at the worst, not only unskilful, but uncapable of his know­ledg.

Yea he hath made you know the things belonging to [Page 495]your Peace, when ye never sought after, nor inquired for him.

And he is the same that ever he was, and professeth he wil make it known, there is no fault, nor want in Christ. But you are wanting to him, and your selves and play the Trevants in this; are laze and heedless to learn that which is so carefully, so constantly taught you.

If a Scholler had the choicest and ablest man for his parts, most diligent in his place, to be his [...]acher, yet if he came not on in his learning, but stood at a stay, every man would conclude, there is no want of sufficien­cy or Faithfulness in the Master, he might have grown, and many have come on under him, but the cause and fault is in his own heedlessness.

Object. But alas, my person is mean, my infirmities so many, my parts so Poor, I am a very Dullard, heavy headed, long before I can attain a little, but am ne­ver likely to come to any great matter.

Answ. There is no one excepted, not one excluded that is faithful. He hath given thee knowledg, he can as wel add to what he hath given, and he wil do it. Thy weakness cannnot hinder his Faithfulness who hath pro­mised. Yea he is ready, and professeth his willingness, that he wil make thee know. Nay he is unweariable to teach, notwithstanding al thy unteachableness to learn. He hath given thee a mind to know, and he wil increase that knowledg, and make him dayly more known that thou mayest dayly increase. Isa. 48.17. I am the Lord thy God, which teacheth thee to pro­fit, which leadeth thee by the way that thou shouldest go. And Chap. 42.16. I wil lead the Blind by a way that they knew not &c. This I wil do unto them, and not forsake them.

4. Collection.

We here see the Reason, why after many Prayers made, many pains improved, by diligence, and endea­vor of the dear Servants of the Lord, that men might see, and savingly, and experimentally know the preci­ous Name of Fatherly Mercy; yet after al, many are at so great a loss, and know so little, find almost nothing of the sweetnes [...] which is to be had out of this Name, that Christ wil make known, and would make known to them.

Truly we do not go to the right door, and we receive not the dole. Christ is the way to lead us to the Fa­ther, and we miss the way, and so attain not to our end. Christ is said to be the Light, Isa. 49.6. He is given as a Light unto the Gentiles. In him was the Promise of Life, and that is the Light of men, to lead them by the hand to the Love of God the Father, and the Faithful Performance of the Covenant: And we follow not that Light, but we compass our selves about with our own Sparks, and follow the light of our own Fire, the car­nal conceivings, and contrivements of our own Carnal Reason, and stay not upon the Name of God, and ther­fore it is, we lie down in Sorrow, Isa. 50.11.

Christ bids us learn of him, Matth. 11.29. Buy of him, Rev. 3.18. And we learn of our own Delusions and Discouragements, we learn of the wrong Master, go to the wrong Shop, buy of our own Abilities, make Tradings of our own. We should not look to our own Grace, but to Christ first to quicken our Grace.

5. Collection.

Here is matter of Abasment of heart, and holy fear; in both which, we ought to walk before the Lord.

1. Ground of Abasement: Not to boast of any measure [Page 497]of enlightening, or Assurance, which at any time we do partake of: as though by any sufficiency of ours, or im­provement of any Ability of our own, we had attained thereunto. There is never a spark of this Fire, but it is from Heaven; not one Beam of holy Light, but it comes from this Sun. The entrance, continuance, perfection, al is from him, he is the Author and Finisher. If we have known any thing, or do, or shal, it's Christ that hath made us know; we have received, and therefore why should we boast, as though we had no [...] [...]ceived.

The least River should lead us to the Sea; and as Abrahams Servant, when his Prayer was answered, He bowed and worshiped, Gen. 24.26. So do thou; when he fils us most, we must be most sensible of our own emp­tiness.

2. Walk in a holy trembling, and fear: Rejoyce be­fore him with trembling, Psal. 2.11. Rejoyce in what he gives, but fear we do not off end the Giver. Those of whom we have dayly kindness, we are very careful we do not give them distast.

6. Collection.

Here is Ground of exceeding thankfulness, and enlar­gadness of heart, for ever, to the Lord Jesus.

The unwearied Faithfulness of the Lord Christ to follow his poor Servants, with the discovery of such Fa­vors, which are not to be found on Earth besides, should cause them to return such acknowledgment which cannot be matched by any men in the World.

Hence he so propounds the Question, as for ever to be admired, but never to be comprehended: Lord, why wilt thou shew thy self to us, and not unto the World? John 14.22 Why wilt thou to us? there is no worth in us to deserve i [...], nor ability to conceive it, no reason to be given, which may perswade it. Why? it's mercy, [Page 498]and that incomparable, incomprehensible, for ever to be adored, and wondered at.

Yea, our Savior is exceedingly taken up with the Consideration, Matth. 11.25. I thank thee, O Fa­ther, that thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent. These Secrets, these depths of everlasting Compassions, these Rarities, these Dainties, which the World never tasted, men of highest Place, chiefest Parts, never came to the sight of. And our Savior pres­seth this a [...] [...]eculiar evidence of his dearest Affection, John 15.15. I call you Friends, because I have de­clared unto you all things, I have heard of the Father; have so befriended you with such special Priviledges, so familiarized my self unto you, whereas others have not an inkling thereof.

7. Collection.

We have here a never-failing ground of everlasting refreshing and Comfort, to fence, and fetch up the fainting hearts of Saints. Whatever oppositions, deser­tions, wants, or infirmities they sustain, which might eclipse, and take away the sight and fence of Gods Love, this Truth preserves, and bears up from al. I know what troubles you, what your complaints are. It's Gods Face, and Fatherly Mercy, it's that ye have long sought, and desired to see: Mine Eyes fail for waiting for thy Salvation, saying, O! when wilt thou comfort me? If I could get a sight of Gods Fatherly Face, and did but know his Mercy were mine, I could resolve with old Simeon: Let me depart in peace; for mine Eyes have seen thy Salvation.

Stand stil, and stay thy self upon the Consideration of this Truth, and thou shalt see greater things than these. Christ hath undertaken to make it known, and therefore quiet thine own heart; thou shalt know this which passeth knowledg.

  • 1. Whatever Oppositions [Page 499]thou hast, he wil out-bid them.
  • 2. Whatever Deser­tions, he will recover them.
  • 3. Whatever weaknesses, he wil remove them.

Whatever it is that eclipseth the coming of this Love, he wil scatter al.

1. Whatever thy Oppositions be, he wil over-bear al, he wil disperse al Clouds, quel al Temptations, quiet al fears, drive away al discouragements, clear al doubts and difficulties. Christ hath said it, and he is able, who hath promised it, and he can perform it: He can make this known, and nothing can hinder tha [...] power of his.

Object. I know he can, but how shal I know that he will?

Answ. He is ready, and resolute; hear his own expression, I wil make it known. So Isa. 46.10. His Wil shal stand, and none can resist it; not the wil of Devils, nor distempers, nor temptations, nor thine own corrupt wil, Psalm, 115.3. If he wil make it known, who hath resisted his will?

2. Whatever be thy Desertions, he wil recover thee out of al: Thou complainest, The time was, God did shew his Face, and discover his Favor: I have known his Name; but O! that is my misery; I have: But God hath forgotten to be gracious, and hath shut up his loving kindness in displeasure.

No: Quiet thy heart, he hath make known, and be assured he wil make known: he was yesterday, he is to day, and he wil be the same for ever. Thy Sun is set, it wil rise again. It is eclipsed now, but it wil shine a­gain, Isa. 54.8. For a smal moment I have had my Face from thee, but with everlasting kindness, I wil have mercy upon thee.

3. What thy wants be, he wil remove, and break through al. Thou sayest, thy neglects have been fre­quent and grievous, many motions, intimations thou hast had, and yet rejected, quenched al, why should he discover any more? thy disires are very fa [...], thy en­deavors [Page 500]weak and sluggish, and in reason unworthy to at­tain any mercy.

Answ. He doth not make known the Name of his Father, because of thy work or worthiness; but it's the Office that he hath undertaken, he wil discharge it: his Promise and engagement he wil perform, notwithstan­ding al thy neglects, and weaknesses. He that made known this Name, when thou never inquired'st after it; he wil not deny to manifest it, when thou seekest after it, though in much weakness, Isa. 42.16. I will lead them, and will not forsake them. John, 17.2. The Fa­ther hath given Christ power over all Flesh, that he might give Eternal Life; and this is Eternal Life, to know thee, verse 3. he hath power over al Flesh; Fleshly Reason, the wil of the Flesh, infirmities of the Flesh, inordinate desires of the Flesh.

Lastly, Exhortation.

Wait upon Christ for this Declaration; if the Vision tarry, yet wait for it, because it wil surely come, it wil not tarry, Habb. 2.3. How can it tarry, and yet not tarry, it may tarry to our apprehension, but not tarry in regard of Gods Determination. This waiting lies in two Rules.

First: See how Christ dispenseth it. Therefore con­sider,

  • 1. That he lies in the Bosom of the Father, and is acquainted with his Bosom Secrets.
  • 2. That al that the Father hath, is his, and he may dis­pose of it, John 16.15.
  • 3. That he is sent on pur­pose, upon this very Errand, John 6.38, 39. John 17.8.
  • 4. He hath received power over al Flesh for the Execu­tion of this, John 17.2, 3.
  • 5. It is his wil, and reso­lution to do it; I will manifest it.

Secondly: See the way how we are to receive it.

  • 1. Stay his time, manner, measure: If it be not free, it is not Grace.
  • 2. Carefully observe what fals, the least [Page 501]intimation, or spark cast in.
  • 3. When we have obser­ved the Dispensation of God towards us, let us then fol­low on to improve that spark, and give way to Christ, and we shal receive more from him.

We are now come to the last, and great thing, observed and expressed in these words of our Saviors Prayer, with which he issues and closes al: and that is the Aim, and desire of our Savior, for which he praies; and for the obtaining of which, he hath, and he wil declare the Fathers Name unto the Faithful, Viz.

That the Love wherewith thou hast loved me, may be in them, and I in them.

For the understanding of which words, we shal open these four Things:

  • 1. How the Father loves Christ.
  • 2. How that Love is said to be in them; that is, the Faithful.
  • 3. The Means, and Order know this is done.
  • 4. When we shall know this.

To the First.

1. This Love is that, which in an especial manner, is appropriated unto our Savior: It's a peculiar Legacy, and Inheritance which appertains to him as a Son. And therefore look at it, as we must do in this place, as cir­cumstantiated in the special Respects and Considerati­ons, as proceeding from the Father as the Father, and terminated, and bounded upon him, as a Son: It's pe­culiarized, and impropriated to him, and to him alone. That however it may be said, and that truly, in a true sense, of al the glorious Persons in the blessed Trinity, [Page 477]that they love each other: yet this Love, as it is dyed in the heart of the Father, hath as it were the Tincture of that Relation, out of which, in an especial manner, it a­riseth, and is resolved, and rests in, and upon the Son. So it is given to him, and in that respect; and is of the like Nature with some other Acts, which are so attribu­ted. As the Father sends the Son, the Son is sent only by the Father.

2. This Love is founded firstly in that Eternal Gene­ration, whereby the Son was begotten of the Father be­fore al Worlds. For therein is the root of those Rela­tive Properties, and so that Personal distinction, that appears betwixt the Father and the Son, and conse­quently of al those proper respects that appertain to each, and be attributed to them in a distinct manner.

3. Hence there ariseth a special knowledg betwixt the Father and the Son, which answers the Specialty of their Relation. For that is a Consequent which fol­lows from things that undergo relative Respects, they give special intimation each of other, because they give relative being each to other: And therefore our Savior when he checked Philip for his ignorance, because he knew not the Father; Have I been so long time with you, and knowest thou not me? he that hath seen me, hath seen the Father, John, 14.9. Relatives give Being each to other, and therefore give Knowledg each of other, Matth. 11.27. No man knoweth the Son, but the Father; and no man knows the Father, but the Son. As we see it in the Sensitive Creatures, so in al Generations, there is an especial owning each of o­ther: as the yong owns the Dam, the Dam the yong, by smel or bleating. He that hath his mind rectified by a Truth, he wil own that Truth that did rectifie him. The Son is the shine of the Fathers Wisdom, Heb. 1.3. A Light sprung from a Light, John 10.15.

4. The Father begets his Son; he owns him when he is begotten, the shine, and engraven Form of his own personal Excellency.

Lastly: He loves whom he thus owns: The heart of the Father is wholly taken up with him, his thoughts wholly set upon him, his Soul is wholly satisfied in him; an Infinite, and Eternal Favorite, of an In­finite, and Eternal Father; so that he cannot look off him, ravished with his beauties, and with an infinite ful­ness of Soul-pleasing satisfaction, takes contentment in him.

This Love, look we at the next effects of it, discovers it self in these two things, which are to be attended in this place.


  • Ʋnion, that is most neer.
  • Communion, that is most intimate, and inward.

Love laies out it self in these two especially, wherein the heart-blood, and vital Spirits of Love, express them­selves.

1. The neerness of Ʋnion.

Therefore our Savior presseth this with so much in­stancy, and holds the thoughts of Philip upon this Con­sideration: Beleevest thou not, that the Father is in me, and I am in the Father? q. d. It's strange thou should'st fal short of this: and therefore, verse 11. he sets home this Truth, as the main Corner Stone of a Christians Comfort. [Beleeve me] I am assured of what I speak, and it concerns thee deeply to receive what I say, as the lowest Foundation of thy Faith.

I am in the Father, and the Father in me; or else beleeve me for the very Works sake] These Works would never have been done, could never be accompli­shed, nor your Comfort maintained therein, unless this In-being (taken together with the manner of it) as Son and Father, be proper to them. And therefore it is that the Father is said to dwell in the Son, a Phrase not attributed to the Holy Spirit in the Sense and man­ner of Apprehension; nay, they are said to be one, viz. [Page 504]in point of this Relative Union, John 10.30. For having said, verse 28. None shall pluck his Sheep out of his hand; he adds, Because the Father, who gave them him, is greater than all, and he, and his Father are one; and therefore if they cannot pluck them out of his Fathers hand, they cannot out of his. Nay, this is made the ground of the great accomplishment of al the great works he did, John 10.37, 38. If I do not the works of the Father, beleeve me not: But if I do, though ye beleeve not me, beleeve the Works; that ye may know, and beleeve that the Father is in me, and I in him. And therefore they are alwaies conjoyned in the Work by our Savior: My Father worketh hither­to, and I work, John 5.17. therefore he is said to come out of his bosom, and to lie in the Bosom of his Love. And this is true in regard of Christ, God-man, in regard of that Hypostatical Union, the Humane Na­ture hath with the Second Person, and subsistence it hath in him.

2. The intimateness of Communion.

This Love layeth open it self in most inward, and intimate Communion of the Father and Son, each with other; as we have formerly observed from Prov. 8.30. I was with him, &c. and was his delight, a word com­pounded of two, to behold, and to retain. So to eye, and gaze upon another with ravishment, and so plea­singly to apply our selves to that other, as to hold, and keep him with us for ever. They have mutual inter­course in al their Operations. The Son works nothing but what he sees the Father work: Speaks nothing, but what he hears the Father speak: doth nothing, but what the Fathers Wil is.

They mutually glorifie one another, and that is their aim in al they do, John 17.1. Father, glorifie thy Son, that thy Son may glorifie thee, ver. 4, 5. I have glori­fied [Page 505]thee on Earth; glorifie thou me with thine own self, with the Glory which I had with thee, before the World was.

He hath then the Soveraign Dispensation of al Works from the Father, who had his Being from him, and so his working.

In the daies of his Humiliation, he laid aside the Dis­pensation of Power, and suffered the Power of darkness to prevail: but now he desires al might be restored to him, verse 5. Al these belong to Christ; God-man, in regard of the Union of our Nature with his Person.

And this is the Love that is here intended.

Reas. 1. Love of the highest strain and pitch, of grea­test, and choycest Excellency, is here intended, and un­derstood: This is the Standard to al the rest. But the Love of God to Christ, is the cause of other the Blessings and Benefits that are bestowed, John 3.35. The Fa­ther loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hands. Therefore this Love, is a peerless, and unmat­chable Love: al other things, which are given to our Sa­vior, Grace, Glory, al Power in Heaven and Earth, are but the effects of it.

Again Joh. 17.24. The glory that our Savior hath given him of the Father, it is said to Issue from a higher fountain, and to be but a stream of it, Namely, The Father loved him from the foundation of the World. Love is from Eternity: the fruits are in time.

Lastly: The whol Tenor of the Prayer and expressi­ons of our Savior in this Chapter gives further evidence and argument to confirm it.

2. How is this Love said to be in them?

When this love of God in Christ sets God on work to wil a like or proportionable good to the Creature. I would say thus.

When God wils to have a Creature neer to him, in his [Page 506]Son, as his Son, to communicate intimately with the Creature through his Christ, as his Christ.

Then this love leaves a being like it self upon the Creature: Its then in its vertue and efficacy in the fatithful.

It was with God, put forth upon Christ, before the World was, and therefore much more before they were.

But our Saviors Prayer is, that this love, which was expressed upon him, might also be extended unto his, made effectual and operative in his.

Its true, the expressions of common love, and the communication of ordinary good, is of larger extent and issues from God, as the Creator of al, and he that is the first being and so gives being to al Creatures.

But special union to be so high unto God, and to communicate so intimately with him, its firstly here to be seen, and from hence therefore must be derived to all such, who shal be so Priviledged, as to be made partak­ers thereof.

3. The Means and Order how this is done.

Answ. The means by which God doth convey the efficacy of this love, wherewith he loved his Son, unto his Saints, may be thus conceived; As the eternal gen­eration of the Son from the Father was the foundation of his love of the Father to the Son, as we have shewed, he begat him, knew, and owned and loved him: So the vertue of this eternal generation is the Cause, whence this love comes to have a being in the Saints. For out of this eternal generation it is, that God sends his Son The Son being sent, acts under that Authoritative Or­der and doth answer the purpose of the Father. And as Second Adam, and as Son, and as begotten of the Father, he assumes ou [...] Nature into personal union with himself, becomes Head of the Covenant, and as he was [Page 507]begotten of the Father, so he begets Children unto God the Father. Therefore he is called the eternal Father: and the Father is said to beget Children, because Christ doth, as sent by God the Father. 1 Pet. 1.3. The Father begets us through his resurrection. Joh. 13. Born of God. And thence they have the Spirit of Sons. So in the text. The love wherewith thou hast loved them, may be in them. But how is that? And I in them. That our Savior adds, to intimate how this comes about

4. When is this done?

Answ. When the love of God in Christ set Gods love, or set God on work, to send Christ begotten of him, to beget Children to him. And then this love through Christ, leaves like impression and operations upon the Soul.

  • 1. Brings the Soul into neerest union with God through Christ.
  • 2. Most intimately communicates of the special operations of the Spirit of the Father through Christ.

1. Brings the finner into neerest union, to wit, Christ is in the Soul Rom. 8.10 If Christ be in you, the Body is dead &c. Yea dwelt in the heart. Eph. 3.17. And God by and through Christ. Rom. 8.9. So Joh. 17.23. I in them and thou in me. So 1 Joh. 2.24. Ye shall continue in the Son, and in the Father. 1 Thess. 1.1. The Church which is in God the Father and in our Lord Jesus Christ.

2. Leaves like operations, the most intimate and special communion of the Spirit of Christ and the Soul. So that God doth al through Christ by man, he doth nothing of, nor from himself. Thus Christ is al in al, Col. 3.11.

And the sinner is wholly now beyond the covenant of [Page 508]works made with Adam, and with him in Adam. So that as Paul observes, I live not, but Christ lives in me. Gal. 2.20. I work, not I but the Grace of God with me. 1 Cor. 15.10. And Christ in me. Coloss. 1. and last Verse.

When the love of God in Christ sets God on work to send his Son begotten of him, to beget Sons unto him, so that he brings them to the neerest union: God in Christ, and Christ, he one in them. They in Christ, and through Christ in God the Father: So that the Father in Christ doth al by them, they nothing of them­selves, receives also al from them, they take nothing to themselves. Then this love of Christ is in them, and leaves a like efficacious impression upon them.

Hence a double Collection.

1. We may hence learn, how to come to a right ap­prehension of Gods special love, and so to a right ex­plication and understanding of several Scriptures there­by.

Gods special love is, when he purposeth to make the Creature neer to him in his Son, as his Son is neer. The Father is in his Son, Christ in the Faithful, and the Father by Christ in them. Christ is in the Father, the Faithful in Christ, and by him in the Father. He doth intimately communicate with them through his Christ, as with his Christ. God by Christ, doth al by them, they not of themselves. He through Christ receives al from them, they take nothing to themselves.

This Love is like the main Hinge, upon which the whol Frame of Gods Dispensations turn, and many Scriptures seem to be made familiar, and somwhat open hereby. As this: Because I wil make a Creature to me, in my Son, as my Son; therefore I wil Elect him, to set out this Love: And therefore create, and give Grace; and because his own Grace cannot bring him so neer, as my Son, he shal through his default fal, and then I wil send my Son, and he shal take Humane Nature into [Page 509]Personal Union with him: In that to purchase al Grace, and have right to communicate al Grace, and in his time to bring them to God, and implant them in himself, and bestow al Grace and Glory upon them: That when they have Grace and Glory upon them, they may acknowledg whence they had it: Cling about that God, and in Christ, that gave it: admire his Love to them; and cleave wholly in Love to his Son, whence he came to love them.

Hence those places receive Explication: Whom he knew, he elected. it's such a knowledg that brings in Election; and therefore not common to Reprobation, Rom. 8.29, 30. Therefore it's a knowledg with Affe­ction, such as would own, and take neer to himself. So Paul to the Ephes. 2.4. God who is rich in Mercy, according to his great Love, &c. God who is rich in his pitying, and compassionating Mercy, according to his great Love, whereby he would take us to himself, make us next Neighbor to his Christ, and neer as his Christ.

Hence therefore God expressed his pity and Compas­sion towards us, in recovering of us out of our distress: God so loved the World, &c. John 3.16.

2. The transcendent Happiness, which the Faithful attain, through the Covenant of Grace, above that of Adam. A man covenanted for men, and might have purchased happiness for them, and communicated that to them by Natural Generation. But here, man lost, can of himself, do nothing for himself: but God, and the power of a God, doth al that for us, which we cannot do for our selves. This is the Nature of our Glory.

But God in Christ, wil be so neer to us, as to be in us; and give al, that we may be so neer to him, as to be in the Son, and the Father, and so return al. This is the Diamond in the Crown.

But that the Love of the Father to his Son, should set his Love on work to bring us to the like Union and Com­munion: This is the beauty, and brightness of the top of the Diamond of the Crown of Glory.

The Words thus opened, and explicated; we have hence these three Points of Doctrine:

  • 1. It is the Desire, and Endeavor of our Savi­vior, That the dearest of Gods Love, which was bestowed on himself, should also be given to his Faithful Servants.
  • 2. Our Union, and Communion with God in Christ, is the top of our Happiness in Heaven.
  • 3. Our Saviors manifestation of the Name of the Father, is the means, and his scope, to bring in the Being of this Love of God unto us.

This last ariseth from the Coherence of these Words with those which went before; and we do but name it, and refer the Reader to what we have formerly at large laid down touching the same, where we have declared both what the Name of the Father is, what is the Mani­festation of it, and what our Saviors Work is therein; and how, and why, he hath, and doth manifest it.

The Two former we shal speak somthing unto, whereof the first, with which we shal begin, was thus laid down:

It is the Desire, and Endeavor of our Savior,Doct. 1. That the dearest of Gods Love, which was bestowed on himself, should also be given to his Faithful Servants.

You see how our Savior is not content to put them off with the least pittance, the meanest provision, but he would have them have the best, the choycest rarities: If there were any Dainties better than other, he would carve out them to his People; as the Love wherewith thou hast loved me.

Christ was the only begotten, the First-born of God, and had the First-born Affections of God bestowed up­on him: and he is not satisfied, unless that First-born Affection of the Father be imparted to them in their proportion.

If there be one bit better than another, some special Rarity that comes unexpected, and that from far; it's the fashion of tender-hearted Friends, I would this Car­ving were but in such a ones hand, though it cost me more than I would speak: it's the choycest Provision that ever I tasted.

So our Savior, when his heart is ravished with the re­lish of the unconceivable Complacency, and Soul-plea­sing Satisfaction, he cannot make a meal of it; but he minds, and remembers the Father of his tender Lambs, and poor feeble Servants: O that my Members, and Faithful, might have a share of this Love, but a little re­lish of it, though it cost me more than wil be imagined.

Thou lovest them as Creatures, thou gavest them their Being, and thou preservest it. He preserves both Man and Beast.

Thou pitiest them as Sinners, thou hast appointed a means for their relief, and thou hast revealed it.

Thou providest for them as Christians, thou hast sent the means (blessed be thy Name) and hast dispensed al those glorious Helps of Life and Grace.

And this is a high Favor, for thou hast not dealt so with any Nation (though thou dealest wel withal) neither have the Heathen knowledg of thy waies.

Thou tenderest them as thy Saints appointed to Eter­nal Life, with Grace, as given unto Adam; and he, as a man, had he kept the Covenant for himself, and his (and so a man by keeping of Covenant) had brought man to Eternal Life.

But, blessed Father, thou hast not only communica­ted thy Grace, but thy self unto me, thou hast loved me before the World, and I have enjoyed the neerest Uni­on, Thou in me, and I in thee; not as an infinite God, who hast created al things, sustainest what thou hast created, governest, guidest al things to their ends, and in their ends, for which they were created: But as a Father, I was with thee, as thine everlasting delight, and lay in thy Bosom.

O! this Love, this endeared, and intimate Love of a Father, let my feeble, poor Servants have some of that, some relish of that: As thou art in me, and I in thee; so they may be in me, and in thee also.

O! let them have but a relish of this Love, I have e­nough; that they may be for ever refreshed, everlasting­ly setled and established.

When the Spirits of Friends, are most indeared to those that they would entertain with greatest content, they are not satisfied to take what is next at hand, or content themselves with ordinary, or common Provision, with course, or mean Fare; but they send far and neer, spare no cost, nor care, nor pains, nor expences; but the best Rarities, fetched from the remotest places, purchased at dearest Rates, preserved in the most especial manner, and that on purpose to give such Persons wel-come, to whom they are indeared as unto their own Souls, and [Page 513]would lay out their heart for their hearts content. It is so with our Savior.

That the Saints may know his endeared Affection to them, and what Provision he hath laid in for their wel-come in Heaven, he leaves this as his last farewel upon their Souls: He tels them, he doth not purpose to set before them, ordinary Fare, common Courtesies, which he vouchsafes to al, as Life, Breath, and Being; poor Diet, of these perishing things here below, of Profits, Pleasures, Honors, and Applause. Nay, he cannot sa­tisfie himself, how he may give the choycest, satisfying content to them: And therefore he looks out, not what Provision, Earth, or Heaven can afford; but what the Bosom, and Breast, and Heart-blood Affection of God the Father can afford.

That Love wherewith thou hast loved me the first of al, the greatest of al, let out some of that, Righteous Fa­ther, unto the fainting Souls of my Faithful Ones.

This, Holy Paul praies for, as for the most precious Favor that could be obtained, as that indeed wherein the rest issue, begs it upon his Knees, Eph. 3.14. I bow my Knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye may be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inward man: that Christ may dwel in your hearts by Faith, that ye may be rooted and grounded in Love: The end of al is, That ye may be able to comprehend with all Saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height, and to know the Love of Christ which passeth knowledg, verse 19.

The Height exceeds al Excellency, al Apprehensi­ons, al Admiration. The Length exceeds the limits of al Time, from everlasting to everlasting. The Breadth exceeds the Bounds of al Being, none have received the impressions of such Love.

It is the Happiness of the Supreamest of the Angles, to have but the Reflection, and to come within the Shadow of this Love. Their Work and Happiness, is to attend [Page 514]upon those, that God hath taken so neer unto Christ, and himself in Christ.

As great Personages maintain their Gentlemen hono­rably, to attend upon their Heir: They keep them at Cambridg, or some such like place, because they will have their Son and Heir there.

They are ministring Spirits, sent out for the good of those that shal inherit Salvation.

No Creature hath this, nor indeed is capable of this Love, but Man. As I might demonstrate to you by the Course of Gods Dispensation.

The Depth being al the most inward, intimate, and enlarged working of al Creatures, let al the Affections of al Creatures be put together, let there be a Conflu­ence, and concurrence of al Fatherly, Motherly, Brother­ly, Friendly, Natural, Spiritual Affections put together. This draws deeper than them al.

David expressed Jonathans Love; it was beyond the Love of Women, which are most ardent, and most vehement. That was but as one Creature might love a­nother: but this is such a Love, as God loves himself and his Son withal. And to procure this Love, the heart of our Savior was so strongly carried, that he left Heaven, and his Glory, yea, lost his Life, yea, was content to lose Gods Love, that is, the sence and sweet­ness thereof, which was better than Life it self, that we might enjoy it. For he became a Curse, that we might be blessed, Gal. 3.13. He was willing to be forsaken (My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?) that so we might be received, and kept for ever, safe, in the Bosom of his Love, Matth. 27.46.

And hither Christ would bring, and here leave us, ne­ver to depart from hence. And therefore he doth con­tent himself, that this Love was appointed, provided, prepared, tendred to the Saints, nay, enfeoffed, and be­stowed upon them; but that it might be with them, and remain in them for ever.

Be in you] that is, That it might take up its Resi­dence, and abode, in them for ever.


1. Love we know, is an Affection of Ʋnion, and by this, the neerest Union betwixt Christ and his Saints, is procured: They are brought to lie both in the Arms of the Father; nay, to lodg in his Bowels and Bosom to­gether. And therefore, as hath been mentioned before, there is that proper Relation, that peculiar Disposition, to be found in the Second Person towards our Nature, and the Saints by that means; which is not to be found in the Father, or in the Holy Ghost. As the Second Per­son, he is the Head of his Church, which can be said of none of the Persons; it's an Heresie to maintain it.

This Union of our Nature, is not only an impression in the Soul, as a work upon the Creature: For then it had been common to al the Persons. For al the Opera­tions, which are created Expressions, are indivisae, undi­vided; what one doth, that al do.

This Union therefore, being a real Union (me non cogitante) though no man in the World, had a thought or apprehension of it: therefore beside the impression that is left upon the Creature, there is somwhat a pecu­liar operation issuing from the Second Person, which be­longs to him alone; and by which it is, he is said to be united, and none else. And therefore there is a peculiar kind of propriety and relation, which the Second Per­son hath in this Union, wherein he suits with our Nature, which is not to be found in any of the other; and that he must have as Second Person, because it's his Prayer.

Hence we are called, Flesh of his Flesh, and Bone of his Bone. Neerer than Flesh and Bone, as neer as one part of the Bone to the other, one part of the Flesh to the other. So our Savior, John, 6.57. As the living Father hath life in himself, so I live by the Father: [Page 516]and he that eateth my Flesh, shall live in me.

Al the whol Aim of our Saviors Prayer is,

  • 1. To bring his Saints as nigh as may [...]e; I will, that those that thou hast given me, may be where I am: that is not enough.
  • 2. That they may see my Glory: nor yet that. But,
  • 3. That they may gaze upon it. Nay, yet further; not they only in Glory, but,
  • 4. I in them, and we both in the Cabinet, as nigh to God as may be, and as nigh one to another, as can be, in him.

2. The greatest good, together with the greatest safe­ty of the Saints, is provided for: This shews the indea­red Affection of the Love of Christ: for Love ever de­sires the greatest good to the thing beloved. So he praies, 2 Thes. 3.5. The Lord direct your hearts into the Love of God, and the expectation of Christ. So also he per­swades, Jude 21. Keep your selves in the Love of God. If they be once here, they are beyond either evil or danger, they need fear nothing. Nothing can separate from the Love of God in Christ. Nothing ye can want, John 16.26, 27. I say not, that I will pray the Father for you: I need not that; for the Father himself loveth you. His Love sent me, and set me on work; his Love is the highest Fountain, the first mover; and therefore it wil set me on work.

If once God love his, as his Christ, nothing can alter or hinder: If the same Love, the same Happiness with Christ. This Love hath al, works al, is before al, over­rules al.

3. By this, the Glory of the Father, and Christ, is most advanced.

This Love is the Treasury, and Magazine of al that in­comparable, and unconceivable Mass of Mercy and Good­ness: in this it is contained, and by this it is expressed to the World.

This Love set God on work to create a World, and to set out his Excellencies therein, to redeem the World out of the World, and to bring to light those depths of [Page 517]his indeared affections to his, in his Christ, which the world could not conceive and would not believe. That the world may know thou hast loved them, as thou lo­vest me. They did know, and they would not beleeve it, that there was such love in God, or such love towards men.

By this, God is admired in them that do beleeve. 2 Thess. 2.10. He is glorious in his Saints, but his glory is beyond comprehension, admirable, when the condition of the Saints, what they were, and hereby are, comes to be considered.

USE, 1. Of Reprehension.

It Checks the opinion and carriage of the drooping and discouraged Saints, who poar upon their own sins, and sit down discouraged in the sight and sense of their own unworthiness: and then begin to measure the Lord Christs affections according to their own disposition: nourish secret Jealousies and surmises: If there be any blessings which are of especial account that they want, or Graces which they desire, or Counsels which they need: They secretly conceive, that Christ, who knows their weakness and wretchedness better than themselves, he grudgeth the graunt of such high favors to such undeser­ving and sinful wretches as they be. No, say they, it wil never be. Happy they who are sit to receive, but the Lord sees them too good, and too much for me: And the Devil is ready at hand to add fuel to the fire, to help forwards such groundless misconceivings as they be. That he may mint and maintain hard thoughts in the Soul against our Savior Christ and his intended compas­sions. So he dealt with our first parents.

The Spark was no sooner stirring and appearing, but he blows and increaseth it, until it come unto a great Flame. Yea, hath God said, ye shal not eat of every Tree? He knows that ye shal be as Gods knowing [Page 518]good and evil. Therefore he forbids you the meanes; that ye may not attaine the end. He envies the happi­ness, otherwise, he that knows what it is, he would have provided for your spiritual good, that ye might have knowledg, as wel as provide the Tree. Therefore the Lord professeth himself offended with this way ward distemper of his froward Children.

The Father cares not for me, loves not me, thinks al too good for me, Isa. 40.27. Why sai'st thou, O Jacob, & speaks O Israel, my way is hid from the Lord? This is the dayly talk of al dismayed ones, the speech they have in their meetings. Jacob saies, Israel saies, This ye say: but what saies the Lord Jesus? Why speakest thou thus? Christ cannot abide such unkind surmises and Jealou­sies.

To cast an Eye to such a wretched Creature as I, my wants are such &c. But the Lord knows how better to bestow his supplies. That I should have peace, or evi­dence, or assurance &c.

Let it suffice thee, that Christ wisheth thy welfare, as he doth the most able and excellent Christian upon Earth. He doth not grudge the greatest excellency in Heaven, no not in the very heart of the Father. He would not have a choice Sit, but he would have thee to be partaker of it: he would have thee share in the love of the Father with himself.

Sit down ashamed and confounded in thy self, that ever thou should'st have a hard thought of Christ, whose heart is so fully [...]nlarged for thy good.

USE, 2. For Instruction.

The Faithful shal certainly be made partakers of the Fathers love in Christ, and when they have it, its as certain they can never loose it.

1. They may certainly expect it.

They may certainly expect that, which Christ desires, [Page 519]because he ever attaines his desires at the hands of God the Father. Joh. 11.42. I know that thou hearest me alwaies, he is sure to speed and therefore they are sure to possess.

But Christ desires this; Therefore they may expect it.

Nay, he not only desires, but the strength of his in­deavor is spent to this purpose, and its the end he aimes at. His desire is ever answered, his labour ever blessed: And therefore the faithful may undoubtedly expect this love.

The Lord Christ makes it the main work on Earth, in Heaven, what he hath done, what he wil. I have made known, I will make known thy Name. He that hath al power, he is improving al power for this end and purpose, that this love may be setled and established. Wil the Lord Christ loose his labor? can he miss of his end? can any thing oppose his power or prejudice his success?

2. They can never loose it.

The love of the Father to Christ, nothing can alter that. The love of the Father to us is the same, nothing can change it. Our union, as his, nothing can separate or break. Our communion, as his, nothing can inter­rupt it.

Hither Paul repaires, and lands his heart and Hopes in safety. Rom. 8.38. — Nor things to come; Obj. Somthing is yet to come. Ans. Come what wil come. This is his aim, to settle the conclusion of their happines, and the certainty thereof: To be beyond the reach of al the hosts in Heaven and Earth. Therefore he musters up al, what are, what shal be. If there were a thousand worlds to come, and should set themselves to shake the comforts of the faithful, it could not be.

The ground is hence,

Because of the love of God in Christ. It was before [Page 520]al these things; & therefore they come too late to hinder it. It was without any repect, and therefore they could not work it. It was only and wholly from God: and therefore they cannot alter it. The Devils and sin may as wel separate Christ from the Father, as pul the love of the Father from his own heart, and so from Christ, as separate us from it.

3. Its ground of greatest contentment to the hearts of al Gods people in al their conditions.

Christ cannot love thee better than he doth, nor pro­vide greater good for thee than he intends. Thou canst have no more, I had almost said, God can give thee no more.

Be therefore content with what thou hast; our Saviors desire is to interest thee in the heart and love of the Fa­ther, as himself. Not to love thee as a Creature, as a friend, a subject, but as the Son of his love. What me? Yea thee, poor, weak, silly, worthless Worm, that beleevest in him. Go thy way therefore, never quarel, nor question any more; never murmur, nor re­pine any more. It is enough, nay it is too much. I would not have thought it. I durst not have desired it. I could not have beleeved it, but that our Savior hath said and done it.

What, I beloved of the Lord Jesus, miserable wretch, who cannot but loath my self, and Judg my self worthy to be condemned? Yea thou. Therefore rest thy weary heart in al thy weakness: do not think to bring such measure of Grace to deserve this love. Nay, lay hold of this love, and it wil increase the eminency of all Grace, and that in a glorious manner. Paul Prayes that the Ephesians may know this love, that they may be filled with all Gods fulness. Eph. 3.19.

View this wishly, and warm thy heart with it, and thou shalt not need to complaine of barrenness, thou shalt be ful of Grace. Nay, ful of al fulness of glori­ous Grace. No kind, no excellency of any kind that [Page 521]fits thy station shal be wanting. How this is done, is not now to inquire, the Doctrine leads us to the same, while we constantly attend to the dispensation of Gods love in Christ begetting us as his Adopted ones to him­self: while we find this experimentally, and so know it, it leaves our hearts under the influence of it, as of him to receive al, and as from him to do al. What ever may be lacking to thy Hope, patience, meekness &c. repaire to this love and know that there is no lack. I have the Choicest love of God that Earth, or Heaven, or the heart of God can afford. And that is beyond the excel­lency of al Grace, and al abilities that either I do want or can desire. He loves me, therefore let him take what he wil from me, do what he wil with me, love wil sup­ply al. Give what he wil, love is better than al. As he, Am I not better than ten Sons? Gods love is better than al Graces and blessings, for it is the fountain of all.

Our Union and Communion with God in Christ is the top of our happiness in Heaven.Doct. 2.

And therefore this comes in as the last Issue of al that our Savior had prayed or could pray for, for them. The good of what he did desire for them in Heaven, Father I wil, that those, whom thou hast given me, be where I am, that they may behold the glory, that thou hast given me, for thou hast loved me, before the foundation of the world. It was not to be in Heaven, nor to have glory in themselves, but to gaze upon the glory, which was given to Christ, and was in him, from his Fathers love

The good and benefit of what he had done, and what he would do for them for ever here on Earth: yea the [Page 522]end and scope of al that they did in attending and in receiving direction from our Savior, and the glorious things that he had revealed unto them, Its here resolved; I have made known, and will make known thy Name: they learned, and shal learn, what I shal teach on Earth; That they may be in Heaven and glory in me, That so they may get into the Bosom of the Father, and the love, wherewith he hath loved me, might be in them. And I in them. Hither he leads them, and here he leaves them, in the arms of Gods everlasting love.

Here is the landing place, what Christ desires for them in their behalf. The good of al, that he should provide, and they should receive, under his daily dispensations, by Hearing, Praying, Word, Ordinances, Providences, its al to bring them to Heaven, that they might be in glory, and his love might be in them.

Here he lands al. Ye must go beyond God himself, and the first out-goings of the Deity, if ye go any fur­ther.

We shal open here two things.

  • 1. What this happiness of Hea­ven is.
  • 2. How this is the top and high­est strain of it.

1. Happiness is a ful fruition of al Spiritual good things in so perfect a manner, as our feeble Natures are capable of,

Two things are to be attended in the Description.

1. There must be a confluence and concurrence of all spiritual good things.

For we now speak of the happiness of the Soul, and that which is inward and spiritual: not of any outward and temporal happiness, which is to be found in these outward things, and belongs also to wicked men; For they may prosper in them. For they grow as the grass, and workers of iniquity flourish. It was that which Jeremy saw, and that which some repine at; Jer. 12.1. [Page 523] Why doth the way of the wicked prosper?

But we speak now of spiritual, Heavenly, and eternal happiness, and the first ingredient which is here espe­cially required, is, That there must be a meeting toge­ther of all spiritual good things. The gathering together of the Waters make the Sea: not the scattering of them in sundry places, or the meeting of some little rivelets. So the gathering together of al such spiritual excel­lencies, which answer the desire and welfare of the Soul: These make a compound of sufficiency of supply, which we cal Felicity. As a Posie of al Flowers. An Elixer, or Quintessence of al Cordials. Psal. 144.15. Happy is that people that is in such a case: Yea, happy is that people, whose God is the Lord.

Now these good things are considered, according to the pith, and substance of them, or according to the pleasantness and sweetness that doth attend upon them, and accompany them and the injoyment of them.

The confluence of those good things, wherein the Marrow of a mans happiness especially consists, may be presented to our apprehensions in three parti­culars

1. When the whole Soul, and so the whole man, is so wholly possessed of al Grace, that it can and doth put forth the exercise of al vertues, Intellectual and Moral, of the understanding and wil, exactly, to answer al the rules thereof according as occasion at any time shal cal for the same.

Its not to have good, but to do good, which is a mans happines, Jam. 1.25. — b [...]essed in his deed. To do wel is our greatest welfare in this world. Adam had al Grace, but was not happy with that, but fel away from God, destroyed himself and his posterity. But if these things abound, ye shal never sal. 2 Pet. 1.10. And it was Epaphras his Prayer, That they might be perfect, and carried ful fail in every good wil of God. [Page 524] Col. 4.12. So far, as the Soul misseth, is weak, or wanting in any work, when God cals, so far he misseth, and fals short of his happiness, and misseth of the ful injoyment of his last end.

That is to do al Gods wils, to wil Gods wils, to meet with him in every act, to give entertainment to him, and to take contentment in him. When we do his wil on Earth, as it is done in Heaven, we are then in the Suburbs of Heaven. He formed us for himself, and then we attain his end, and our own good also, when we shew forth his praise. Isa. 43.21. And therefore Jam. 1.4. He wisheth that patience may have her perfect work, have the exercise of al trials and miseries, that we may be handy at al weapons: when we have with meekness borne one evil, we may with quietness bear al,

But what benefit wil there be in that?

Ye shal be perfect, Entire, and wanting nothing. When we grow skilful in the bearing of al trials, we then out-bid al evils, we meet with, in others, and in our own hearts: meet with God in the exercise of al his rules, injoy him in al, and so our end and good in the bearing of it: and therefore can want no good: because we are not wanting to any rule, nor exercise of any Grace or Duty.

2. As the whole Soul doth put forth the exercise of al vertues to answer Gods wil and please him: The Lord also, he freely and fully lets in himself, and com­municates of al his glorious excellencies to the Soul, and fils it ful of himself, and the glorious expressions and operations of his Spirit, pleaseth us, and applies him­self to us, whereby the Soul is furnished and fitted to do more and have more of God. Isa. 64.5. Thou meetest him that rejoyceth and worketh righteousness. He that doth more for God, God communicates more to him. A good work is the reward of it self. Do and live. That is, do, and be inabled to do. For, to live, [Page 525]is to put forth acts of Obedience. And when Adam had pleased God, and attained this his Chief good and end, he could go no further, nor have any better, and therefore the reward was, That God would immutably assist him, that he should be inabled to love him and please him.

So that however the Lord God is the Objective hap­piness of the Soul, and so the happiness of al is equal, and the same, as God is the same: Yet the more the heart is inlarged for God and laies out it self in holy services for his honor:

The more the Lord wil be in the communications of himself, and the more ful and effectual in lettings of his gracious presence and operations of his Spirit into the Soul. And so the reward is proportioned to the work. Shall I withhold any thing from Abraham, for I know that he will command his Children, and his houshold after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do Justice and Judgment &c. Gen. 18.17.19. He that loves and keeps: The Father and Christ wil come and manifest or shew themselves to him. Joh. 14.21.23. And 2 Chron. 16.9. He wil shew himself strong in the behalf of them, whose heart is perfect towards him.

3. The Soul acting upon God and meeting with him, in al the acts and exercise of the whole man, doth not only close with the operations and expressions of God, let in: But laies hold upon that infinite excellency and sufficiency in himself, and sucks out a satisfactory sweetness therein, through al eternity. For though it be the end of the Soul, being made for God, to work for him, and put forth al such operations: yet I suspect, the bare working is not al, nor the ful end of the Soul: But in this working to close with God, and suck out a sufficiency of supply from him. For no Creature, that is finite, can be the end of the Soul, nor give satisfaction to it. But all the expressions of God, let in, are such. [Page 526]Therefore there is somthing more required. Lament. 3. The Lord is my portion. Whom have I in Heaven? Psal. 73. Herein lies the pith of our happiness; our pleasing of God, our taking possession, and so by frui­tion injoying of God. But ever with this good; wherein our blessedness doth consist: There is ever a sweetness and pleasantness, that doth accompany the fruition of this, with a freedom and absence of any evil or grie­vance in the least kind or measure that may hurtfully annoy.

For where there is the fulness of an infinite good, let­ting in it self, suitable to our desires or wants, there can be no grievance in reason possible.

The Aromatical sent of the Cordial is one thing, the Cordial another. The Posie is one, the Smel ano­ther.

If a man were free from al Grievance in Heaven, if the Soul should not close with God, nor God let in the expressions of his Grace; Heaven were a Hell.

Therefore this is not our happiness, but an attendant upon it. Psal. 17.15. and 63.3. Thy loving kind­ness is better than life.

2. Member is.

This is done in so perfect a manner, as our Human Natures are capable of.

That lies in two things.

1. We shal see and injoy God immediately, not by means. And 1 Cor. 13.12. We shal see him as he is. And therefore not darkly, but clearly, not as vailed and covered in the works of Creation, but see him Face to Face. Therefore not see him sparingly, and little of him, not as he drops himself in the means: and therefore we can see nor receive him in no other measure than they wil communicate: but we shal l [...]ve at the Wel and Foun­tain Head, he shal let out himself fully: We shal know as we are known. 1 Cor. 15.28. God shal be all in all.

2. As there is nothing to lessen the fulness of the com­munication of himself and goodness, so there is nothing to abate and take off the sweetness of the good we do injoy.

And this is the priviledg of Heaven: the unconceiv­able beauty and brightness of the place may d [...]zel us: but that it is free from the presence of any evil. Rev. 21.27. No evil thing was ever there to defile it, nor can come there to annoy it. Eph. 1.21. Far above al principalities and powers. Whereas had we been in the world, we should have been amongst Devils and his Angels, wicked and ungodly men, the presence where­of would have been grievous to us, though they should never have prevailed against us through their Malice.

2. How this Ʋnion and Communion comes to be the top of this happiness.

1. If we receive more from God, and do more for him: by this then we are more happy. For the more we have of our end, the more happy we be.

But by this we receive more from God, and do more for him. 1. More for him. Because it was a principle of Grace which Adam received, when he was created, and it was that, which should have been increased in a greater degree, if he had been glorified

But when man was lost, it was not the Creature, nor any mutable principle in the Creature, that could bring the Soul to God, or keep it with him.

But God sent his Son: and the God-Head of Christ in the Nature of man could only, and did only bring back the Soul to himself.

Nay God did his best, as I may say, and put forth the highest strain of his excellency. Here was wisdom above al the Wisdom of Creation to contrive this: Almighty [Page 528]power above al the power of the Creature to work this; Grace above al the Grace of Creation, that must establish this: for that Grace which Adam had, he lost.

It was not now saying, Let man be Redeemed, But Christ must shed his Blood, or Els it could not be. 2. Thess. 1.10. — Admired in them that Beleeve. Admiration presumes somthing not expected, or we cannot tel what to make of it when the Devils and wick­ed men, who knew such men in their unbeleeving courses under the curse shal see them pardoned, reconciled; they that were Enemies to God, made now one with God in Christ, they wil be astonished at it, 2 Thess. 1.12. That the Name of Christ, as he is made known in his word and work of Redemption may be made glorious, he in the Father giving al, and that meerly out of Grace. Joh. 13.31, 32.

2. We do more for God in Christ. For as he doth al by man, and he doth nothing: So he receives al from man, he takes nothing to himself.

Had Adam stood, man by Grace might have pur­chased life, and communicated it unto man in way of Covenant. Now the Covenant of works is, do and live. Its God in Christ doth al: and therefore he must through Christ receive al. We were formed to set forth his praise, and so we do. I live not, therefore work not. But Christ. Gal. 2.20. We are his workmanship, Its not ours, of our selves. Eph. 2.10. We are kept by the power of God through Faith. 1 Pet. 1.5. And so sanctified by the power of God, quick­ened by the power of God through Faith &c. Its Christ is made of God, Wisdom, Justification, Sanctificati­on, Redemption, and so al the glory goeth to God in Christ.

2. By the neerness of this Union, we suck out the sweet­ness of our end and last good, and so become happy [Page 329]thereby. Its Pauls expression of the glory of Heaven. 1 Thess. 4.17. We shall ever be with him. To be in Heaven doth not make us happy (look we at the place Barely as a place) but to be with Christ. This is but the Suburbs, or the verge and skirts of Heaven, by this we get into the inmost Room.

Adam by Obedience and the Work of his Grace had met with him, and communicated of Grace from him, working as he wrought: but here is the Crown of his Glory.

Not to be in Heaven, nor glorious by Grace in us; that is a Creature: but we to be in Christ, and by Christ in the Father, and the Father through Christ in us. Not with him, but in him. This is the Diamond in the Crown. And therefore the Lord Jesus makes it one step into the innermost Room, not to be in the sight, but in the Arms of Christ. Not to have Christ a Spectator, but an In-dweller. And therefore our Sa­vior makes this the end of glory, as in the foregoing verse, and so better than glory. The glory thou hast given me, I have given them, that thou mayst be it them, and I in them. We are in Heaven, if glory may be in us, and we in Christ.

3. That which carries the first and most supream and deepest impression of the sweetness of the chiefest good; that must cause our chiefest happiness.

Thou art in the bounds of Heaven, but in the Bosom, nay in the Bowels of the Father.

This is the lowest of al, ye cannot go deeper.

The highest of al, ye cannot go further.

This is somwhat beyond al Graces, beyond al Crea­tures, somthing above Heaven it self. The first corner stone of our everlasting unconceivable happiness.

The first Out-going of the God-Head was, He knew [Page 530]and conceived himself, and so begot his Son, as a lively Character and shine of his own person, and thence he owned him, and loved him, and took him into that neerest union and communion.

And at the next turn and stroak, he took a Creature neer to himself in his Son, as his Son, communicated with a Creature through his Christ, as his Christ.

Herein is the deepest, the deearest, the first, the choi­cest of al.

The expression of common love, in the communication of common good, is of large extent.

He is the first being, and gives being.

He is Power, gives Power.

He is good, doth good to al.

But to be so nigh to him, and not to have common courtesies, but Fatherly kindness; its here firstly.

He is firstly a Father to Christ, and so loves him, and in Christ, he loves thee as him. Now thou art at the highest and furthest.

It was the first out-going of Gods love, and the grea­test that ever was. More cannot be conceived, nor indeed expressed, unless we would have more and better love than Christ, which is unreasonably and uncon­ceivably absurd. He is first and we second, not in Hea­ven, but in Gods heart.

USE, 1.

Its matter of Admiration; we may here see and be swallowed up with everlasting wonderment, at the mysterious and uncomprehensible depth of Gods dispen­sations in the covenant of Grace, and the Redemption of a sinner by Christ; where he brings the greatest good, out of our greatest evil, the greatest glory, out of the depth of our greatest misery; Advanceth us to the high­est top of Heaven and happiness, out of the lower-most Hel of sin and wretchedness, out of the greatest estrang­ment [Page 531]from God. To bring a sinner to the neerest union and communion with God.

Thus God comes to be admired in those that beleeve. The Devils have seen one holy and gracious, adorned and beautified with the Image of God. But he that was a Rebel, an enemy unto Christ, and a hater of him, as contrary to him, as darkness to light, to be neer to him, one with him, nay, to be in Christ and Christ in him: It is the wonderment of Angels, and the astonishment of De­vils. And we should be amazed at this mysterious mercy.

And it is true Lord, saies Solomon, That thou wilt dwel amongst men? 1 King. 8.27. But to be in them, to be one with them, and they with thee, Oh the depth of the riches of the Knowlegd and Wisdom of God, How unsearchable are his waies, and his paths past fin­ding out! To work our greatest gaines out of our grea­test losses! To bring us by the bottom of Hel, into his own Bosom and Bowels!

USE, 2. Examination.

We may hence know what interest we have in happi­ness, how neer to Christ, what Hopes of it.

As far as thou art from Union and Communion with God in Christ, so far from happines. 2 Cor. 13.5. Know ye not that Christ is in you, unless ye be Repro­bates? Know ye not? prove and examine. Know ye not that Christ is in you? ye should, it con­cernes you, els ye are Reprobates.

Is this the least part of thy care, the furthest off thy thoughts? Thou mayest beleeve it, and conclude it, thou art far enough from happiness, as far as Hel is from Heaven.

Its a description of the wicked. Job. 21.14, 15. They say to the Almighty Depart from us. They say so to the waies, the Grace, the Laws, the Government of God in Christ; we wil not walk in those waies, nor [Page 532]receive or be acted by those Graces, or be ruled by that Scepter.

Dost thou dream of Heaven, poor wretched Creature? it would be a Hel to thee: to have a Christ to redeem, a God, or mercy to tender, and save, thou wouldst be in Hel, though thou wert in Heaven.

Thou shalt be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his power. Thou hast said Depart; God wil say, Depart ye Cursed. Christ came to bless, and ye wil have no Christ. We wil not have this man to rule: therefore no blessing. He that loves not the Lord Jesus, loves him not as a Lord to rule, as a Savior to save him from his sinnes, let him be accursed, Maran-atha, to the coming of the Lord. Curse him al ye Angels of Heaven, al ye Churches on Earth let him be accursed in life, in death, until Christ come to judgment, and then let him hear that curse; go ye cursed into Hel Fire. Ye, would no Union, therefore ye shal have an everlasting Sepera­tion.


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