Page images
PDF
EPUB

k "

pensation of mercy to the world, to instruct men as their Prophet, to intercede for them as their Priest, to govern and defend them as their King the Son of God received from the Father. It was the reward of his humiliation, of his sufferings and death as the Son of man—“Therefore,” we are told, “God highly exalted him, and gave him a name above every name k. With this kingdom he was solemnly invested when at his resurrection and ascension to heaven, God declared to him, “Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee"-"I have set my King upon my holy hill of Zion”—“Sit thou on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool!.” The object of this mediatorial kingdom which Christ received of the Father, was to enable him to “bring many sons unto glory ";" to “purify to himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works ";" to redeem and save them from the hands of their enemies; to make them conquerors over death and the grave; to exalt them to a kingdom of glory eternal in the heavens. But when these objects are accomplished; when his faithful people, exalted to the bliss and immortality of heaven, and rescued from error and temptation, from death and the grave, need no longer a Prophet to teach them, a Priest to intercede for them, or a King to govern and defend

[blocks in formation]

them, the mediatorial kingdom of the Son ceases; he delivers it up to God the Father, and in his human nature becomes subject to him. Christ, as Mediator, was indeed subject to God the Father before this surrender of his kingdom; but after this surrender he is subject to the Father, not as Mediator, but in his private capacity as the Son of man.

But are we not assured that his redeemed shall reign with him for ever; that he “shall reign for ever and ever°;" and does not the Church universal, therefore, in one of her creeds profess her belief, that of "his kingdom there shall be no end." How can these things be, if Christ delivers up his kingdom to God the Father? It is only his mediatorial kingdom which he delivers up, that kingdom which had for its object the salvation of the redeemed; and when this object is accomplished in their advancement to immortality and glory, the necessity of this kingdom ceases, and the Son delivers it up to God the Father. But still the glorified humanity of Christ retains power and dominion by virtue of its union with the Son of God. This humanity is to be co-eternal with his divinity; and thus, though the human nature of the Son will in itself be subject to the Father, no longer reigning over the mediatorial kingdom, yet by virtue of its eternal union with the second

person

of the Trinity, the Son of God, it will possess everlasting power and dominion. In this sense Christ will “reign for ever and ever, and of his kingdom there shall be no end.”

After the Son thus surrenders his mediatorial kingdom—" God will be all in all.” Here it is worthy of remark, that the Apostle omits the appellation, the Father. And the meaning of this passage, therefore, evidently is, not that God the Father “ will be all in all,”- but that God, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; the eternal Godhead, will be “ all in all.” The Son as Mediator exercised all power in heaven and in earth. But this power ceasing, when he delivers up the kingdom; all dominion hereafter is exercised, not by the Son as Mediator, but by the Godhead, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, one God, blessed for evermore. “ God” is thus "all in all,"—the only source of power and dominion, of glory, and felicity, the only object of homage and obedience.

Thus, brethren, has been unfolded to you, the important event which takes place when “ the end cometh ; when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and all power. For he must reign till he hath put all things under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. For he hath put all

things under his feet. But when he saith, all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.”

This passage has been sometimes urged against the Divinity of Jesus Christ. It is contended, that as he is represented as delivering up his kingdom to God the Father, and becoming subject unto him, he cannot partake of the Divinity; for it would be impious to suppose subjection of any kind in one of the persons of the eternal Godhead.

But do not they who believe in the Divinity of Christ, assert also his humanity? Did not that blessed

personage, who in relation to his Divinity maintained his equality with the Father“I and the Father are one P,”-in reference to his humanity declare, “ My Father is greater than 19?" Was not he who was styled the “ Son of God,” “ the brightness of the Father's glory, the express image of his person "," “ the Word who was in the beginning, who was with God, who was God,” called also the “Son of man, the Son of David “,” bearing our sins and carryp John x. $0. 9 Jolin xiv. 28. r Heb. i. 3. John i. 1. + Matt. viii. 20. &c. xxiv. 27.

Bb

[ocr errors]

VOL. II.

66

ing our sorrows, tempted in all respects like as we are? And is not the conclusion, hence, irresistible, that in him the Divine and human natures are united, so that this “ one Christ,” is “

very God and very man.” Incomprehensible, indeed, is this mystery of godliness. But is not every thing relative to the Divine nature inscrutable? Who can, by searching, find out God?

Carry with you then, brethren, in your interpretation of those parts of the sacred writings which relate to Jesus Christ, the truth that in his

person there was a mysterious union of the Divine and human nature, that he was God as well as man; and they will appear luminous and consistent. Thus the subjection of the Son to the Father, in the passage which has been under consideration, is not the subjection of the Son as one of the persons of the Godhead, but as the Son of man. It is the subjection of his glorified human hature *.

The surrender of his mediatorial kingdom by

* In that passage,

“ of that day and that hour knoweth no man, not the Son," &c. (Mark xiii. 32.) our Saviour speaks of himself in his capacity as the Son of man. And the “ day," the precise time of the vengeance to be executed on Jerusalem, typical of that of the final judgment, was no part of the revelation of the Father to him in this capacity.

« PreviousContinue »