תמונות בעמוד

so again. This may not be attempted in the fleshit can never be done in separateness, but in the unity of the body; but the principle should be in our hearts, and we should be ready to act upon it; for our Lord hath said, “ Unless a man forsaketh all that he hath, and taketh up his cross and followeth me, he cannot be my disciple.” Our Lord did not His own will, but the will of the Father, even unto death. And if we would be glorified with Him hereafter, we must be one with Him in suffering herewe must give up our own will, that we may do the will of God. The blood, which is the natural life, must be poured out, as it were, at the foot of the altar; and thus shall we become “a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God.” And this, be it remembered, we cannot do of ourselves, but by the Spirit of God, who dwelleth in us—that as Christ,

through the eternal Spirit, offered Himself, without spot, unto God," so we, by the same Spirit, should live unto Him.

Thus gloriously constituted, the Church doth receive, even in this life, the seal and earnest of the eternal inheritance which is reserved for us in heaven, and to be given unto us at His appearing and kingdom.“ He that overcometh (saith our Lord) shall inherit all things," and "shall sit with me on my throne, even as I overcame, and am set down with my Father on His throne."

From the first Adam, then, we inherit flesh, and an earthly condition. From the second Adam we receive the Spirit, and a heavenly condition. The children of the first Adam, redeemed, but not


regenerate, inherit the righteousness of God in the flesh, and an earthly glory. The children of the second Adam, redeemed and regenerate, inherit the righteousness of the Spirit, and a heavenly glory. For when Jesus rose from the dead and ascended into heaven, to sit at the right hand of God, He received the promise of the Father, even the gift of the Holy Ghost for men. This gift of the Holy Ghost He poured out on the day of Pentecost, and from thenceforth by one Spirit we are all baptized into the one body of the Lord, and so brought into the fellowship of that eternal life which was with the Father, and was manifested to us by the Son, and of which the water in baptism is the pure symbol. And thus we are made partakers of the Holy Ghost, with His gifts and endowments, after a manner and a measure never before given to men. For although it is most true that holy men of old spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost, yet is it equally true, and expressly declared in the sacred Scriptures, that the Holy Ghost was not given to the Church previously to the resurrection and ascension of our Lord to the right hand of God. Till then, indeed, He had been with men for every good purpose and work, and striving with men against sin, according to that Scripture which saith, “ My Spirit shall not always strive with man;" which is also confirmed by our Lord, saying of the Holy Ghost, “ He is with you.And, doubtless, whatsoever has been wrought in man that is good and perfect, has been the work of the Spirit with man; but He never before dwelt in the Church, as a body fitted and prepared to be an

s habitation of God through the Spirit.” And, therefore, our Lord, when speaking of the presence of the Holy Ghost, added, “and He shall be in you.Hence St. Paul declares, “ Ye are the temple of the Holy Ghost, and God dwelleth in you."

Such is the constitution of the Church of Christ. Incorporated in the one body of the Lord—“ members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones,” we are also made partakers of the Holy Ghost, and, as such, exhorted to walk worthy of our high and holy calling in Christ Jesus—a calling corresponding in dignity to the spiritual constitution of men who have been “ begotten again to a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inherita ance incorruptible, undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for us, who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation, ready to be revealed in the last time."

Moreover, the witness required at the hands of the Church implies the presence of a life beyond the reach and knowledge of the letter, and of powers such as the letter could never furnish. Therefore, from 66 the oldness of the letter” we must necessarily cease, if we are indeed to " walk in the newness of the Spirit.”* For the letter, having fully served the purpose for which God appointed it, has given place to the Spirit; and we now live under a dispensation of the Spirit from the Lord; and in this dispensation “ the Lord is that Spirit.” Therefore it is written, “ But we all, with open face-i. e., we all, who have passed from the dispensation of the letter to that of the Spirit—from whose face, therefore, the vail of the letter has been removed through the death of the flesh and presence of the Spirit—“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” -i.e., being transformed from the glory of God in the dispensation of the letter, to the glory of God in the dispensation of the Spirit, we become translated from glory to glory, even as of the Lord the Spirit. Such is THE HEAVEN-BORN CONSTITUTION, and such THE HIGH CALLING OF THE BAPTIZED CHURCH. As the temple of God, the Church is a witness to the personal presence of the living God with the children of men; as God has said, “I will dwell in them and walk in them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” As the epistle of Christ, written upon the fleshly tables of whose heart the character of God is traced, not with ink, but by the Spirit of the living God, the Church is a living manifestation from God to man, known and read of all

* By the letter" is meant the condition of men in the flesh under the Law; and by the Spirit,the new and heavenly state into which we are brought by the Gospel of Christ. (Rom. vii. 5, 6., viii. 1-18. Galat. iii. 3-8).

And that the Church may indeed become a true and living witness for God, all her members have been constituted “ ONE BODY”—have been endowed with 66 ONE SPIRIT,” and called with 66 HOPE OF THIS CALLING;" having GONE LORD, ONE FAITH, ONE BAPTISM, ONE GOD AND FATHER OF ALL, WHO IS ABOVE ALL, AND THROUGH ALL, AND IN ALL.” And that nothing should be lacking to fit and prepare her for becoming this high witness



for God before all men, that all men might believe, and come to the knowledge of the truth, God did clothe her with the ministry of “apostle, prophet, evangelist, and pastor," the fruit of Christ's righteousness, and “His gifts” to the Church, “ for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, and for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.” And “ His gifts and calling are without repentance.” How great, then, is our responsibility! We cannot be a true witness for God, but by our “ living in the Spirit” and “ walking in the Spirit;" by our abiding in unity; by our being manifestly one body; by our dwelling in godly love; by our being not of this world, even as Christ was not of it; by our doing not our own will, but His, like as He did the will of His Father, by our rendering a cheerful and willing obedience in the service of God, showing that we are “not under a carnal commandment, but under the power of an endless life”-that “Christ liveth in us,” and that we are verily and indeed “ risen with Him, and with Him seated in the heavenlies.” But, alas ! where can we find such a witness? Must we not take

up the lamentation of the prophet, and say, “ How is the gold become dim, and the most fine gold changed ?” When we look at the baptized, as a body, are we not constrained to say, “the Lord hath nourished and brought up children, but they have rebelled against Him...they have forsaken the Lord, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel to anger, they are

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