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liv. 5. For thy maker is thine husband, (the Lord of hofts is his name): Heb. Thy Makers are thine huf bands: JEHOVAH SABAOTH is his name.
This rich promife is grafted upon the promise made to Chrift of a new kind of intereft in God as his God: John xx. 17. I afcend to my God and your God. God being the Mediator's God by purchase, he becomes our God in him. Chrift having performed the condition of the covenant, falls heir to the great heritage; and we fall to it alfo in him, being heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ, Rom. viii. 17.
III. The Promife of Sanctification.
In the promise of eternal life to the elect, is comprehended in like manner the promise of their fanctification: Ezek. xi. 19. I will take the ftony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh: verfe 20. That they may walk in my ftatutes. See Joël iii. 17, 21. Heb. viii. 10. Through the breach of the first covenant, they loft the image of God: their whole faculties were fo 'depraved, that they could neither do, fpeak, nor think any thing truly good, and acceptable to God: they were by nature altogether unholy; unclean, lothfome, and abominable, in their nature, heart and life. And it was quite beyond their power to make themselves holy again: for mending of their nature could not effect it; it behoved to be renewed, Eph. iv. 23. And the curfe of the law lying upon them, extinguifhed all Taving relation between God and them; and fo blocked up all faving communication with heaven: for it barred in point of juftice, all fanctifying influences from thence; thefe being the greatest benefit they were capable of, as affimilating the creature unto God himself, or rendering it like him. The curfe fixed a gulph betwixt God and them, fo that fanctifying influences could not pafs from him unto them: more than their unholy defires and prayers could
pafs from them unto him. So the fallen angels always were, and the damned now are, beyond all poffibility of fanctification, or of receiving fanctifying influences from heaven; there being no remedy to remove the curfe, neither from the one nor from the other. And in this cafe all Adam's pofterity had lain for ever, had not Jesus Christ, as the head of the elect, undertaken in the second covenant to remove that bar, to fill up the gulph, and to found a new faving relation between God and them, thro' his own obedience and death. But upon that undertaking of the Mediator, the Father did by promife infure their fanctification; that Christ's people should be willing in the day of his power, in the beauties of holiness, Pfal. cx. 3.; and that a feed fhall ferve him, Pfal. xxii. 30.
And this promife, the promise of sanctification, is indeed the chief promife of the covenant made to Chrift for them: among the rest of that kind, it fhines like the moon among the leffer stars. Sanctification is the very chief fubordinate end of the covenant of grace, ftanding therein next to the glory of God, which is the chief and ultimate end thereof. The promife of it, is the centre of all the rest of these promifes. All the foregoing promises, the promife of prefervation, the Spirit, the first regeneration or quickening of the dead foul, faith, justification, the new faving relation to God, reconciliation, adoption, and enjoyment of God as our God, do tend unto it as their common centre, and ftand related to it as means to their end. They are all accomplished to finners, on defign to make them holy. And all the fubfequent promifes, even the promise of glorification itfelf, are but the fame promife of fanctification enlarged and extended: they are but as fo many rays and beams of light, fhooting forth from it as the centre of them all.
This appears from the fcriptural defcriptions of
the covenant, in the promiffory part thereof respecting the elect: Luke i. 73. The oath which he fware to our father Abraham, ver. 74. That he would grant unto us, that we being delivered out of the hands of our enemies, might ferve him without fear, ver. 75. In holiness and righteoufnefs before him, all the days of our life. Here is the oath, or covenant fworn to Abraham as a type of Chrift; wherein his feed's ferving the Lord in holiness, is held forth as the chief thing fworn unto the Mediator by the Father; and their deliverance from their enemies, as the means for that end. See Heb. viii. 10, 11, 12.; where God's writing his law in their heart, is fet on the front as the first thing in the divine intention, though the last in execution, as appears by comparing the 10th and 12th verfes. This matter is alfo evident from the nature of the thing. For the great thing Satan aimed at in feducing our first parents, was the ruin of the image of God in them, that fo mankind might be no more like God, but like himfelf: and the mystery of God, for the recovery of finners is then finished, when holiness is brought in them to perfection in heaven, and not till then.
From all which, one may plainly perceive, that the fanctification of all, that fhall fee heaven, is fecured in the covenant, upon infallible grounds, beyond all poffibility of failure: and that the unholy have no faving part nor lot in the covenant; and that the lefs holy any man is, the lefs is the covenant-promife accomplished to him. For the fanctification of finners is the great design of that contrivance; it is that which the Father and the Son, looking therein to them, had chiefly in their view: and the promise thereof is the capital promise of the covenant, refpecting them being as it were written in great letters.
Now, at the time appointed for every one in the eternal council, this promife is accomplished. The finner being justified by faith, and taken into a faving L 3 relation
relation to God, being reconciled, adopted, and made an heir of God through Chrift, is fanctified. The bar being removed, the gulph filled up as to him, his faving intereft in, and a relation to a holy God being eftablished; the communication between heaven and the finner is opened, and fanctifying influences flow amain, to the fanctifying of him throughout.
This is, by fome divines, called the fecond regeneration, agreeable to the fcripture: Tit. iii. 5. He faved us by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the holy Ghost; compared with Eph. v. 26. That he might fanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water: 2 Cor. v. 17. If any man be in Chrift, he is a new creature; namely, being created in Chrift Jefus unto good works, as the apostle himself explains it, Eph. ii. 10. And as in regeneration, taken strictly for the quickening of the dead foul, and called the first regeneration, new vital powers are given; so in regeneration, taken largely for the forming of the new creature in all its parts and distinct members, which is called the fecond regeneration, there are new qualities and habits of grace infufed; and it is the fame with the second renewing, mentioned in our Shorter Catechifm, on the head of fanctification, "Whereby we are renewed in the whole man, after the image "of God."
The matter lies here. The finner being by faith united to Chrift, through the communication of the quickening Spirit from Chrift unto him, and thereupon juftified, reconciled, adopted, and made an heir of God; there is a measure of every grace, even the feeds of all faving graces, derived from, and communicated out of the all-fulness of grace in the man Chrift the head, unto the finner as a member of his, by the fame Spirit dwelling in the head and members. Hereby the man is not only a fpiritually living creature, but an all-new creature, fanctified wholly or throughout, renewed in the whole man,
after the image of God. For the immediate effect of that communication of grace from Chrift, muft be the fealing of the perfon with the image of Chrift; forafmuch as he receives grace for grace in Chrift, as the wax doth point for point in the feal. So that the restored image of God is expreffed on us immediately from Christ the second Adam, who is the image of the invifible God: even as Eve was made after God's image, being made after Adam's, according to Gen. ii. 18. I will make him an help meet for him; marg. as before him, that is, in his own likeness, as if he fat for the picture. Compare 1 Cor., xi. 7. He (to wit, the man) is the image and glory of God; but the woman is the glory of the man; ver. 8. For the man is not of the woman, but the woman of the man. And 2 Cor. viii. 23. Our brethren are the meffengers of the churches, and the glory of Chrift. And thus our uniting with Chrift, through the Spirit, by faith, iffues in our becoming one spirit, that is, of the fame fpiritual holy nature with him; as really as Eve was one flesh with Adam, being formed of him, of his flesh and of his bones, Gen. ii. 23. ; to which the apostle alludes, in the matter of the mystical union between Chrift and believers, Eph. v. 30. For ye are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
This is the fcripture account of the matter: according to which, the fanctification of a finner hath a fpecial relation to Jefus Chrift and his Spirit; depends withal on our relative ftate in the divine favour; and fo is no less a mystery than our juftification. As the depravation of human nature hath always been fo manifeft, that it could not efcape obfervation in the world; fo, in all ages, men have been aiming to difcover and compass the cure thereof, in a right use they apprehended they could make of their vational faculties. The iffue whereof hath always been, at beft, but an outward fhew and femblance