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such love may be in themselves, neverthless, they carry about with them in their own bosom, living testimonies from day to day, of the love of God the Father, the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the communion of the Holy Ghost. Men who know nothing of such a work wrought in their own souls, may and will, as all natural men must do, call in question these glorious truths of our most holy faith; and, from a total ignorance of any saving grace in themselves, give no credence to the work of grace wrought in others. But this is not the case with the Lord's people; they are themselves the Lord's witnesses for his truth. And it is an infinitely important consideration with me, I confess, to keep everlastingly in view, and to be as everlastingly living upon the sure conviction of it. And as the gracious acts and manifestations of each of the glorious Persons in the Godhead, are such as none but God can perform, each and all do thereby give the fullest and clearest demonstration of the eternal power and Godhead, in the unity of the divine essence; and consequently it must follow, that as those acts of grace, and those blessings bestowed upon the church, from each glorious Person in the Godhead, are all equally sovereign and Almighty; so are they all equally entitled to the same acts of adoration, love, and praise, to each and to all in the unity of the divine essence. If the reader, through divine teaching, knows these precious things, he will not need my advice, and especially, in the present evil day of rebuke and blasphemy, to be very cheery how he parts with them. For my own part, I desire to do by them, as Moses commanded Israel to do by the Lord's statutes and judgments, bind them as a sign upon mine hand, and as frontlets between mine eyes," Deut. vi. 8. I will say of them, "they shall lie down with me, and rise up with me;" yea, I will "esteem them more than my necessary food!" And very sure I am, that in every instance of the


Lord's people where those gracious manifestations from the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, are spiritually known, spiritually received, lived upon and enjoyed from day to day, there the child of God cannot fail to have the corresponding affections excited in the heart, and there will be the goings forth of the soul in love, and faith, and esteem, to each and to all the several Persons in the Godhead, as the united source of all blessedness there in grace, and hereafter in glory. The preciousness of the saints' death, is equally to the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; for the whole Persons in the Godhead take equal interest in all that relates to the church from one eternity to another.

From this foundation as on an immoveable rock, and on which the whole superstructure of the church of our most glorious Christ is built, we may pass to another consideration connected with the same; namely, that the death of the Lord's saints is precious in the Lord's sight from the personal union which every member of Christ's mystical body hath with Christ himself, the glorious head, "For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones," Eph. v. 30. Indeed, the church of the Most High God, stands in a double relation to our most glorious Christ: first, in that we are married to his person: and, secondly, in that we are redeemed by him, as our surety and Redeemer. And it is by virtue of this our affinity to him that all we have and all we are, yea, and all we ever shall be, derives importance. It is our mercy when we can and do trace this in all its bearings; the analogy between nature and grace in this particular, is very striking; for as the whole of death, and sin, and condemnation was and is in our original nature by the fall of Adam in which we are involved; so, the whole of life, and holiness, and justification which we have by grace, was and is in the Person of our Lord Jesus Christ in whom we are interested.

So, God the Holy Ghost most blessedly teacheth in his statement, "For (saith the Lord) as by the offence of one, judgment came upon all men to condemnation: even so, by the righteousness of one, the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life: for as by one man's disobedience, many were made sinners; so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous," Rom. v. 18, 19. Hence it follows, that as by my connection and relationship in nature with the first Adam so called, I am implicated in all that belonged to him in his headship, and sin, death, and eternal misery are entailed upon me by inheritance as my just portion; so equally by my union and relationship in grace to the second Adam so called, even the Lord Jesus Christ, I am interested in all that belongs to him, as the head and husband of his church and people; and holiness, life, and immortality are as truly my inheritance and my just right in Christ, as my condemnation was before in Adam. Hence also, the Lord Jesus Christ, as Christ, and the church, as his church, are never considered separately; they have been from everlasting, and are and must be to everlasting, one in Jehovah's view. The death of the Lord's saints, therefore, is precious in the Lord's sight, from their personal union with Christ, and from their interest in Christ. And in no one point of doctrine is the Holy Ghost more particular than in this oneness of Christ and his church. In his death, his church is said to have "died with him," Col. iii. 3. In his burial, the whole body is said to have been buried with him," Rom. vi. 3—5. In his resurrection, "to have arisen with him," Rom. vi. 8. And in his ascension, "to have ascended with him, and to be sitting together with him in heavenly places in Christ Jesus," Eph. ii. 5, 6. So that in all that Christ did, he acted as the head and husband of his people. And when death is swallowed up in victory,


he will manifest the same oneness and interest, in raising up his members as part of himself, and "present them to himself faultless before the throne of his glory with exceeding joy,” Jude 24. All which tends yet further to prove, that "precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints."

But we must not stop here. The death of the Lord's saints is precious in the Lord's sight on another account; namely, because by death the mystical body of Christ is brought into this conformity to Christ, their glorious head, who died also. In death, as in all things else, he must have the pre-eminence: and he could not have been the "first begotten from the dead,” neither “ the first fruits of them that sleep," if he had not died, and they his members had not followed him in both. By their death here is a conformity to his death; and by their sleeping in the dust, they are prepared for a conformity to his resurrection. There is somewhat very sweet and interesting in this view of the subject. And the Holy Ghost by Paul hath very blessedly observed on this point, in that striking scripture, where it is said, "For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the first-born among many brethren," Rom. viii. 29. The church, therefore, according to the eternal council, will, and pleasure of Jehovah, being in all things to be in conformity to her head and husband, where a resemblance became attainable; she, by the grace of God, was to follow her Lord to the grave; and the dust, which his blood hath so sweetly perfumed, she should lie down in until the resurrection morning. Hence, to the believer in Christ, the very aspect of death and the grave is changed. It is no longer a subject of weeping, it is an asylum, a chamber of soft slumber and repose. It hath been Jesu's own retiring room, where he himself once lay,

and by laying there hath sanctified it Blessed, therefore, is the church in being here as in other points, predestinated to be conformed to his image. "Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints!"

Neither must we stop here. For if possible, an higher cause than even our conformity to our glorious head maketh the death of the Lord's saints precious in the Lord's sight; namely, in that it becomes the means in the Lord's hands for the Lord's triumph in his members, as he hath in himself, over death and the grave. It is It is very blessed for the church, when she is brought into the smallest conformity to her glorious head and husband, Christ: but it is far more blessed when that conformity is made subservient to the promotion of Christ's own personal glory: and it is Christ's own personal glory, his triumphs in the resurrection of his members, of which he is the sole efficient cause. Here, indeed, is the offence of the cross totally taken away. For "he was crucified in weakness;" but what a glory ariseth out of it when, by his own resurrection, "he was not only declared to be the Son of God with power," but raiseth up his own mystical body to the same triumphs by himself. Now it is the death of Christ's body, the church, which lays the foundation for the triumphs of Christ in their resurrection," when he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and admired in all that believe." The Holy Ghost by Paul, among other mighty and marvellous events which are then to take place, in this great day of our God, particularly mentions this as eminently striking; at once illustrative of his eternal power and Godhead, and of the blessed alterations made by him on his body, the church; " he shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself," Phil. iii. 21. Imagination fails to form the smallest conception of what will be the glory of our most glorious

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