Imatges de pÓgina
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fire; this gives us a view of the archangelexhibition, and of the conftitution of the world, according to Chrift's mediate state.The prefent world may be viewed as being under this baptizing cloud, as it were, between the two pillars, baptized already with the deluging waters, and waiting the approach of the pillar of fire, which, in the fcriptures, is often called the glory of the Lord; which baptifm, will finifh the state of the bondage and corruption of the creature; whence, by the power of fovereign grace, according to the pattern given in the redemption of those who have the first fruits of the Spirit, the whole creation, as a brand pluckt out of the fire, fhall be delivered and restored.

It is well know that flame exists by a motion of the electrical fluid meeting refistance from another and oppofite motion; when, therefore, this angelic power, of the acting of which we have daily indications, fhall come against the courfe of nature with its whole ftrength, it will neceffarily produce a fhock that muft fet all on flame.

Section 11, The Covenant with Noah.

The world being thus arrested, overcome, and brought into fubjection under the bondage of corruption, by the power of the redemption law; which being the principle of a covenant, and, in Chrift, the fource of all grace; according to the theory, we now look

for the appearing of the grace of God, in the most express covenant tranfactions.-Thefe, we find clearly exhibited on the divine page. And first, by this operation, the creature is brought to yield fubmiffively to God; and through Noah, as the head or first organ of the fubjected world under Chrift, its fubmiffion is moft folemnly and explicitly offered to the Lord, to whom it was found that judgment belonged.

And notwithstanding this law of the eter nal God was nothing less than the sentence of death, and its eftablishment was felt to poffefs a fword of judgment, which already had given an incurable wound, and was prepared to repeat the ftroke; the facrifice, by No. ah, of every clean beat and fowl, was the most folemn and explicit act of fubmiffion to it, as being holy, juft and good; fuch is the power and gracious effect of the redemption difcipline.

This fubmiffion being wrought in the creature, and in this way expreffed, it is gracioufly accepted of God; the Lord fmelled a sweet favour; for this free fubmiffion refpected the fame will or law of God, that Chrift confented to from everlasting; but what was infinitely more to its advantage, was the manner in which it was offered, viz. by a facrifice, which refpected and brought into view the obedience of Chrift; it was offered under him, and in union with him; yea, HE, as confenting to the divine will, appeared in the offering, therefore God was pleafed, well pleafed; and that he might be gracious for his name's

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fake, he established this his everlafting covenant with Noah and his fons, 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 fhould be of them, that all flesh fhould not any more be cut off by the waters of a flood, neither fhould there any more be a flood to deftroy the earth.Thus, in fubmiffion 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 fame redemption-law, and inftitution of judgment, which had brought them upon the earth.

The covenant being thus established, is unchangeable, and its promifes are, yea, and amen; for the conditions all refting with Chrift, the truth which enfures the performance of all, is effential to the divine exiflence; that power of his, which had fubjected the world, was proved fufficient to hold it in fubjection; and the gracious operation, which had wrought fuch a free fubmiffion to the divine will in Noah, was fhewn to be all-fufficient 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 confume from the earth all those who should be found unwilling to fubmit, and should remain unreconciled and oppofed 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 fource, could not fail.

Therefore God faid, the ground fhould not again be curfed, because of the works of men: Although, indeed, the foul of man, throughout, be folicitoufly bent upon the evil thing, all living flefh fhould not again be smitten.All the days of the earth, feed time and harvest, cold and beat, fummer and winter, day and night, fhould not ceafe.

Section 12. The Rainbow.

And the Lord God faid 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 perpetual 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 shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow fhall be feen in the cloud: And I will remember my covenant, which is as the charter of me and yours, and of all living flesh; and the waters fhall no more become a flood, fo as to deSiroy all flesh.

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This is the most expreffive fign or token of the of the world to come, and power grace in relation to the conftitution and ftate of the prefent world.-It fhows, at once, the dividing and the uniting line of mercy and truth, of righteoufnefs and peace; for, whilft the peculiar conftitution and frame of this world

exhibited to the eye, a view, also, is here

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

The fingle and widely diffufed cloud, from which the rains fall gently, and without tempest, (which circumftance of the cloud indicates the more general tranquillity of the winds) does not flow the rainbow; for, fuch reflections of light, as give to the eye the appearance of the bow in the cloud, require that the waters diftilling from the cloud fhould defcend to the earth in a bowing or circular form, which requires the agency of oppofing winds. In mifts, 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 obferved in the Spray of a water-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 tempeft, (which ftate of the cloud fhews the preffure and conflict of oppofing winds) the bow is feen; which, therefore, betokens clearly the peculiar ftate of this world, as fubfifting by two powers acting against each other.

Again, it may be obferved that this cloud, by an established caufe, is fo circumfcribed in width, that it mult foon pafs over; for, the preffure by which it is formed exifts evidently between two tides; I mean the tides of ebb and of flood, which are known to be the fame in the air as in water, The moil ex

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