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his heavenly Father; and, doubtless, grace would have been imparted to the parents according to their day, and divine consolations would have been more than an equivalent for the premature death of their son. Besides, the hope of shortly meeting him in the realms of immortal bliss, with a crown of martyrdom on his head, would have tranquillized their minds, and have made them dumb, because the LORD had done it.

5. When ISAAC inquired, "My father, where is the lamb for a burnt-offering?"-we may justly conceive that ABRAHAM's feelings were wound up to the very acme of distress, to the highest pitch of paternal sensibility. And that was indeed the time in which it may be emphatically said, that "God did tempt ABRAHAM," the time in which the omnipotence of his faith appeared, and in which the divine promise was applied with peculiar light and energy to his heart. Therefore, with the utmost serenity and confidence he says, "My son, 78, God will provide." (Gen. xxii. 8.) This promise the LORD fulfilled by providing and accepting the ram in the room of ISAAC. This was grace in the time of need. Here the patriarch saw the day of CHRIST, rejoiced, and was glad. But knowing that he was still a creature absolutely and continually depending on his almighty Deliverer, and seeing the necessity of living by faith in the divine promise in the successive periods of his probationary state, he reverts to the same precious promise, glories in the accomplishment of it which he had just experienced, looks forward to the day of CHRIST for its perfect fulfilment, and is glad; and then calls the name of the place, ~, “JEHOVAH will provide.” (Gen. xxii. 14.) Thus, when we rely on the veracity of the Divine Being, and unreservedly consecrate ourselves to his glory, we find his promises, by the application of them, to be exactly adapted to our state; and thus also the path which leads to their final completion shines more and more to the perfect day. We may, likewise, observe, that the same promise, as in the above instance, is applied to our minds on different occasions; and that the renewed application of it discovers to us more clearly, and enables us to anticipate more joyfully, the gracious and providential blessings of the present life, as also the future glory with which it is replete. ABRAHAM, in virtue of that promise, having received ISAAC in a figure from the dead, knew that there was no possible situation or circumstances, however painful or dangerous, in which he might afterwards be placed, to which that promise was not abundantly adequate, and therefore, rising above every anxious anticipation, the grateful and confidential language of his faith was, "JEHOVAH will provide."

The immutability of ABRAHAM's faith was equal to that of God's promise: both were unchangeable. The lapse of twenty-five years, during which time the promise was unfulfilled; the deadness of his own body, and that of SARAH's womb, superinduced by old age; these were in his estimation less than nothing, when opposed to the faith

fulness and omnipotence of him who had said, "ABRAHAM shall have a son." The son was given, and again demanded as a sacrifice fifteen years previous to his union with REBECCA. Yet even this did not unsettle the Patriarch's faith. GoD had told him that all the nations of the earth were to be blessed in a Divine Saviour, of whom Isaac should be a progenitor; and therefore he was fully persuaded that even the death of his son could not invalidate the word of him who cannot lie. The wood, the knife, the altar, and the heart of ABRAHAM, were prepared for the bloody catastrophe; and the obstacle which ABRAHAM could never remove, God himself took out of the way, ISAAC's reluctance to submit to such an unprecedented deed. But while every circumstance thus concurred with ABRAHAM's resolution to execute the divine command, the language of faith was, "GOD will provide." When the LORD has given a promise, and when we comply with the conditions either expressed or implied in it, we may be as certain of its accomplishment as we are of our existence.

An abhorrence and immediate renunciation of those sins which rendered necessary either the destruction of the sinner or the death of the SAVIOUR; an entire confidence in the unbounded and everlasting mercy of God towards them that fear him; a supreme love to our heavenly FATHER, to JESUS the MEDIATOR, and to the ETERNAL SPIRIT, for Heaven's last best gift to man; a love evinced by a conscientious observance of the divine commands, and a constant acquiescence in the divine dispensations; these are the duties inculcated by the inspiration of the HOLY ONE in the history of ABRAHAM'S trial; to which, if we wholly give ourselves, we shall be acknowledged as the sons and daughters of the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY. Amen!

ON THE VICARIOUS SUFFERINGS OF JESUS CHRIST. THE Apostle declares that CHRIST, "by his own blood, entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us." (Heb. ix. 12.)

It is well known that the words for us are not found in the Greek text; and therefore, those who reject the doctrine of the Atonement generally object to the present translation of the passage, and maintain that it means that CHRIST obtained for himself eternal deliverance from pain and suffering.

But the objection is perfectly groundless: for, although the terms for us are not expressed in the text, they are evidently implied therein. The Apostle is here manifestly speaking of the benefits of the sacrifice offered by CHRIST. Now it is certain that CHRIST offered no sacrifice for his own sin, since he was perfectly sinless, and had never been guilty of any transgression. Consequently, the sacrifice which he offered, he offered for us, not for himself. From this, the following argument will arise :-Whatever is obtained by the offering of a sacrifice, is obtained for those, for whom the sacrifice is

offered. But the sacrifice which CHRIST offered, was offered for us, not for himself: therefore, the eternal redemption obtained by that sacrifice, thus offered, was obtained for us, not for himself. And this is also confirmed by the general tenour of Scripture, which expressly asserts that CHRIST hath redeemed us; but it never says that he redeemed himself.

But it is objected, that CHRIST's having obtained eternal redemption for us does not prove his sufferings to be vicarious; because the word redemption is sometimes used in Scripture where vicarious sufferings cannot possibly be meant.-I answer, Men may as well argue that the term resurrection does never signify the rising of the body from the grave, because it is sometimes used to signify nothing more than a reformation of life. It is fully granted that the word redemption is found in some parts of the Bible when no kind of vicarious sufferings is meant or intended; but it is certain that, in other parts of Scripture, redemption is spoken of in such a manner as to make it undeniably evident that vicarious sufferings must be meant thereby. For,

1. It is plain that the Apostles speak of CHRIST as a lamb slain, by whose blood we are redeemed.

2. This kind of phraseology must naturally lead the Jews to believe that his sufferings were vicarious; for the following reasons:

GOD decreed the death of all the first-born in Egypt, in every house where the paschal lamb was not slain, and where its blood was not sprinkled according to the divine appointment; (Exod. xii.;) so that if the children of Israel had omitted the killing of the lamb, GOD would have smitten their first-born with death: but when the destroying angel saw the blood of the lamb, he passed over the houses, and spared the children's lives therefore, the lamb was a substitute for, and accepted instead of, the first-born.

In commemoration of the deliverance from Egypt, the LORD appointed a kind of redemption to be practised among the Jews through all their generations. And it was expressly commanded that every firstling of an ass should be killed by the breaking of its neck, unless a lamb was slain in its stead: but if the owner of the beast thought proper to kill a lamb in the place of the other animal, that animal was suffered to live, being literally redeemed by the blood of the lamb that was slain. (Exod. xiii. 13, 15.) According to this law, the death of the lamb was necessary to the life of the redeemed: so that it was impossible for the latter to live, except the former died.

The Jews frequently performed this redemption, and the practice passed from father to son, and became an established custom in Israel. When, therefore, that people heard of their being redeemed by the blood of CHRIST as of a lamb slain, they must necessarily consider the sufferings of CHRIST as vicarious, and view him as dying instead of the redeemed.

It is allowed that a wealthy man may redeem captives by paying

a sum of money for their liberty; but then it is evident that he does not redeem them by his blood, neither does he give his life for their ransom. A warrior may redeem captives by his blood, when he fights for the recovery of their liberty and loses his life in the conflict: but it can never be said that he redeems them as a lamb that is slain; neither is it possible that he should be compared to a lamb, for lambs never fight in this manner.

Hence it follows, that although there are many kinds of redemption without any vicarious sufferings, yet redemption by the blood of a lamb must always imply vicarious sufferings, without which it can never be effected. The Jews had been accustomed to redeem the life of their beasts by causing a lamb to die instead of the devoted animal; therefore, when they heard of the sinner's being redeemed by the blood of CHRIST as of a lamb slain, they must believe that CHRIST died in the sinner's stead, if they believed the Gospel to be true. The law, by enjoining such a kind of redemption, taught the. Jews this lesson; and the law was their schoolmaster to bring them unto CHRIST.

3. CHRIST is frequently spoken of in Scripture as bearing our sins. (Isa. liii. 11, 12; Heb. ix. 28; 1 Pet. ii. 24 ; &c.) Some people contend that this does not prove the sufferings of CHRIST to be vicarious; because AARON and his sons are said to bear the iniquity of the holy things, and of the congregation, (Exod. xxviii. 38; Lev. x. 17,) although it is certain that they never endured any vicarious sufferings.

But let it be remembered that expressions signify differently, according to the connexion in which they stand, and the relation which they evidently bear to certain subjects. In some parts of Scripture, death signifies nothing more than the death of the body, which is the common lot of all mankind; but in other parts of the sacred volume, the same term is used to signify the destruction of body and soul in hell. In these cases, however, there is always some distinguishing circumstance by which every attentive reader may discover in what sense the word is to be understood; and the same may be said in the present case. For, when AARON and his sons are said to bear iniquity, the bearer is not the sufferer; but when CHRIST is said to bear iniquity, the bearer is the sufferer in a very eminent manner.

Now the question is, In what sense could the Jews understand the term bearing iniquity, when the bearer is eminently the sufferer? An answer to this inquiry can only be found by considering what was meant by such expressions in the Old Testament. The Law and the Prophets are the only guide in this case. And here God declares, that the son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son. (Ezek. xviii. 20.) MOSES, likewise, speaks of several offences, for the commission of which VoL. I. Third Series. OCTOBER, 1822.

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the transgressor should bear sin and die. (Lev. xx. 20; xxii. 9; xxiv. 15: Num. ix. 13; xviii. 22, &c.)

Here it is evident, that when the Scriptures of the Old Testament speak of any one bearing sin and dying, the meaning is, that he suffers the punishment due to the sin which he bears. In this sense, the son shall not bear the iniquity of the father; that is, he shall not suffer the punishment due to his father's sins.

Thus, in the Old Testament it is clearly taught, that when one bears sin, and dies for the sin which he bears, he suffers the punishment due to that sin. In the New Testament, it is clearly taught that CHRIST "bare our sins," (Heb. ix. 28; 1 Pet. ii. 24; &c.,) and "died for our sins." (1 Cor. xv. 3, &c.) Therefore, in the Bible it is clearly taught that CHRIST suffered the punishment which was due to our sins. Or, in other words :-He that bears sin, and dies for that sin, suffers the punishment which is due to the same sin. But CHRIST bare our sins, and died for our sins: therefore, he suffered the punishment which was due to our sins. This is what every man must believe, who believes the New Testament to be true, and searches the Scriptures of the Old Testament for instruction.

PAUL affirms that "CHRIST hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree." (Gal. iii. 13.) From what the Apostle advances in this chapter, it is evident that every trangression of the law of GoD exposes the offender to the curse of that law, leaves him under condemnation, and renders it impossible for him to obtain justification by the deeds of the law which he has broken. But CHRIST hath obtained eternal redemption for us from this curse, by being made a curse for us, and bearing in his own body on the cross the punishment due to our offences.

This is that great work which constitutes him the Saviour of the world, and distinguishes him from every other person. Prophets and Apostles have taught precious truths, and given shining examples of piety well worthy of imitation. (Jam. v. 10.) Martyrs have displayed their faithfulness and patience in the most trying circumstances, and amidst the most exquisite sufferings. Many have wrought great miracles; some have been raised from the dead; (Matt. xxvii. 52, 53;) and others have been translated to heaven without suffering the pains of death. But did ever any of these suffer the punishment which was due to our sins? Have they redeemed us from the curse of the law, by being made a curse for us? Was PAUL crucified for us? (1 Cor. i. 13.) Can the Martyrs' blood atone for our sins? No: this is the SAVIOUR's peculiar work, in which he has neither equal nor imitator. JESUS hath obtained eternal redemption for a lost world: so that there is no other name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved.

(To be concluded in our next.)

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