Imatges de pÓgina
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fire; this gives us a view of the archangel-
exhibition, and of the conftitution of the
world, according to Christ's mediate state.-
The present world may be viewed as being
under this baptizing cloud, as it were, be-
tween the two pillars, baptized already with
the deluging waters, and waiting the ap-
proach of the pillar of fire, which, in the
fcriptures, is often called the glory of the Lord;
which baptism, will finish the state of the
bondage and corruption of the creature;
whence, by the power of sovereign grace, ac-
cording to the pattern given in the redemp-
tion of those who have the first fruits of the
Spirit, the whole creation, as a brand pluckt
out of the fire, shall be delivered and reftored,
: It is well know that flame exists by a mo-
tion of the ele&trical fluid meeting resistance
from another and opposite motion; when,
therefore, this angelic power, of the acting
of which we have daily indications, shall
come against the course of nature with its
whole strength, it will necessarily produce
à lhock that must set all on flame.

Section 11, The Covenant with Noah.

The world being thus arrested, overcome, and brought into subjection under the bon. dage of corruption, by the power of the re. demption law; which being the principle of a covenant, and, in Christ, the fource of all grace; according to the theory, we now look

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for the appearing of the grace of God, in the most express covenant transactions.-These, we find clearly exhibited on the divine page. And first, by this operation, the creature is brought to yield submissively to God; and through Noah, as the head or first organ of the subjected world under Christ, its fubmisfion is most solemnly and explicitly offered to the Lord, to whom it was found that judga ment belonged.

Ard notwithstanding this law of the eternal God was nothing less than the sentence of death, and its establishment was felt to pofsess a sword of judgment, which already had given an incurable wound, and was prepared to repeat the stroke; the sacrifice, by No. ah, of every clean beast and fowl, was the most solemn and explicit act of submission to it, as being holy, just and good; such is the power and gracious effect of the redemption discipline.

This submission being wrought in the crea. ture, and in this way expressed, it is graciously accepted of God; the Lord smelled a sweet Javour; for this free submission respected the same will or law' of God, that Chrilt consented to from everlasting; but what was infin. itely more to its advantage, was the manner in which it was offered, viz. by a sacrifice, which respected and brought into view the obedience of Christ; it was offered under him, and in union with him; yea, He, as confenta ing to the divine will, appeared in the offering; therefore God was pleased, well pleased; and that he might be gracious for his name's

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fake, he established this his everlasting covenant with Noah and his sons, and with their feed after them; and with every living creature, of the fowl, of the cattle, and of

every beast of the earth, that was with Noah in the ark, and with all that should be of them, that all flesh should not any more be cut off by the waters of a flood, neither should there any more be a flood to destroy the earth. Thus, in submission to God, and an acknowledgment of the forfeit of life, and flying to the blood of the everlasting covenant, the creature found refuge from the waters of the flood, in that same redemption-law, and inftitution of judgment, which had brought them upon

the earth. The covenant being thus established, is unchangeable, and its promises are, yea, and amen; for the conditions all resting with Christ, the truth which ensures the performance of all, is essential to the divine existence; that power of his, which had subjected the world, was proved sufficient to hold it in subjection; and the gracious operation, which had wrought such a free submission to the divine will in Noah, was shewn to be all-sufficient to make willing a people to bear his name in every age of the world.--Moreover, the pow. er that could do this, could also cut off and consume from the earth all those who should be found unwilling to submit, and should remain unreconciled and opposed to his name and authority; and his faithfulness to exert this his archangel-power, according to that

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covenant which is its eternal source, could

not fail.

Therefore God said, the ground should not again be cursed, because of the works of men: Although, indeed, the foul of man, throughout, be solicitously bent upon the evil thing, all living flesh should not again be smitten. All the days of the earth, feed time and harves, cold and beat,

fummer and winter, day and night, should not ceafe.

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Section 12. The Rainbow. And the Lord God said unto Noah, this is the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and

yours, as the charter of all living flesh; and which shall be with yours for per, petual generations; I do fet my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of the covenant between me and the earth. And it mall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the carth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud: And I will rememb.r my covenant, which is as the charter of me and yours, and of all living flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood, so as to deProy all fejh.

This is the most expressive sign or token of the

grace of the world to come, in relation to the conftitution and state of the present world. - It shows, at once, the dividing and the uniting line of mercy and truth, of righteousness and peace; for, whilst the peculiar constitution and frame of this world is exhibited to the eye, a view, also, is here

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by given of the power and grace of the world to come, as prevailing over all.—This will be perceived, by observing the circumstances in which the bow appears in the cloud.

The single and widely diffused cloud, from which the rains fall gently, and without tempelt, (which circumstance of the cloud indicates the more general tranquillity of the winds) does not show the rainbow; for, such reflections of light, as give to the eye the appearance of the bow in the cloud, require ihat the waters distilling from the cloud should descend to the earth in a bowing or circular form, which requires the agency of opposing winds. In milts, or particles of water, not moving in a circular direction, there is not this appearance. The circular form of the vapours which exhibits this appearance, may often be observed in the spray of a wa. ter-wheel going with the wind of the wheel against the natural current of the air. But, in the folded and thickly condensed cloud, from which the rains fall with violence and tempest, (which state of the cloud thews the pressure and conflict of opposing winds) the bow is seen; which, therefore, betokens clearly the peculiar state of this world, as subfifting by two powers acting against each other.

Again, it may be observed that this cloud, by an established cause, is so circumscribed in width, that it mult soon pass over; for, the pressure by which it is formed exilts evidenily beiween two tides; I mean the rides of ebb and of flood, which are known to be the same in the air as in water, The noiles.

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