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Luke i. 32.

heaven, imposed on our Lord) did very well suit the SERM. Messias. No other name could be more sweet or XVII. acceptable; no other name could better become Matt. i. 21. him, who was to redeem men from all their ene-ii. 21. mies, their slaveries, their errors, their sins, their miseries.



Num. xiii.


It was indeed a name not in its immediate application altogether new, for many others had borne it: Jesus, the son of Justus, we have mentioned in St. Col. iv. 11. Paul; Jesus the son of Sirach, that excellent writer, we know; and divers others so named occur in Josephus: yet was it questionless by God's providence, or by Moses, by divine instinct, first produced with Basil. Iren. relation to the Messias: Moses called Oshea the son of Nun Jehoshua, saith the text: being in a mysterious exchange from a former name assigned to the famous Jesus (as not only Bensirach, but the apostle to the Hebrews write him) the son of Nun, Ecclus.xlvi. who of all the ancient types did most exactly (in of- Heb. iv. 8. fice and performance) represent and presignify the Messias; being, as Bensirach speaks, great for the saving of God's elect; whose actions are wonderfully congruous to those which we attribute to our Jesus. For, by the way, to shew the resemblance, (omitting less, and more nice congruities,) as Joshua Num. xiv. did bring the good report, and evangelized concern- 7· ing the promised land, (when other false or faint inquirers defamed it, and discouraged the people from entering;) as he was educated under Moses, and served him faithfully; as he succeeded in the administration and government of God's people, perfecting what Moses had begun of deliverance and settlement to them; as he brought the Israelites (not that old disbelieving, mutinous, and repining

SERM. generation, but a new progeny of better disposed XVII. people) finally out of the wilderness into Canaan, by God's miraculous assistance, subduing their enemies, Josh. v. 2. and establishing them in a quiet possession of the promised land, allotting unto each tribe its inheritance; and as he did re-circumcise the children of Heb. xi. Israel: so did our heavenly Jesus first make a true and faithful discovery concerning the mystical land of promise (that better country) flowing with spiritual milk and honey, (abundant with all spiritual comforts and pleasures, for the food, sustenance, and refreshment of our souls.) He was born under the Law, and submitted to its injunctions, fulfilling all righteousness. He survived it, (the part of it which was purely Mosaical and arbitrary,) and did complete it. He doth conduct God's regenerate people (such as believe, and willingly follow him) out of the desert state of error, guilt, and sin, into the superior state of happy rest and joy, with miraculous power and efficacy; vanquishing all the spiritual Amorites, (the devil, world, and flesh) which infest, obstruct, and oppose them; settling them in a perpetual, undisturbed, and immoveable enjoyment of that blissful region; having also by a spiritual circumcision prepared and consecrated them to God. Our Saviour therefore, not only when he at last in fulness of truth did come into the world, but anciently in type and shadow, may be supposed to have received this name Jesus, conferred upon him in the person of Joshua, his most illustrious representative. It certainly was most apposite to the Messias.

That Jesus (that person, whose birth, life, death, resurrection, and ascension hence, are related in the evangelical histories) is the Christ, is the principal

Gal. iv. 4.

Matt. iii.

15. v. 17.

ζωής, σωτη-
ρίας, πί



article of pure faith; the most peculiar doctrine of SERM. our religion as such, and as distinct from all other religions: it indeed virtually comprehends all other doctrines of moment therein, regarding either faith or practice. For that our being persuaded that Jesus is the Christ, implies, that we apprehend ourselves obliged to embrace for truth whatever was taught by him and his apostles, to obey all his laws, to rely upon him for attainment of all the mercies, and blessings, and rewards, which he promised to dispense, in that order and upon those terms, which the gospel declareth. Whence to the hearty belief of this point such great commendations are given, so high rewards are offered, so excellent privileges are annexed in the scriptures. Whence also the declaring, proving, and persuading this doctrine was the chief matter of the apostles' preaching, as both their profession and practice do shew. The Jews, saith St. Paul to the Corinthians, require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom; but we preach Christ, that was crucified. And, I determined, saith he Cor. i. 23. again of himself, not to know any thing among you, (that is, not to discover any other knowledge, not to insist on any other subject,) save Jesus Christ, even him that was crucified. This, St. John tells us, was xai TOUTOV ἐσταυρωthe drift of his writing the gospel, (which is a more ivov. extensive and durable way of preaching.) These John xx. things, saith he, were written, that ye may believe 31. that Jesus is the Christ. And their practice, suitable to such professions, is apparent in divers passages of this book, wherein their acts and their discourses are reported. This text particularly represents the scope to which St. Paul mainly directed his

ii. 2.

SERM. preaching, which was the maintenance and persuaXVII. sion of this point, that Jesus is the Christ.

It is therefore very requisite, that we should well understand the meaning thereof, and that we should firmly be persuaded of its truth. To which purpose I shall endeavour, by God's assistance, to imitate St. Paul's practice here, who did ovμßißášem, (that is the Greek word here, signifying primarily to put or bring things together, and thence in a way of collection or argumentation to teach,) who, I say, did instruct his auditors, collecting it from testimonies of ancient scripture, and confirming it by arguments grounded thereon. In performing which I shall observe this method:

1. I shall explain the notion and reason of this name, or title, Christ.

2. I shall shew (that which is here tacitly supposed) that there was by God's appointment to be, or to come into the world from God, one person, signally that, which this name or title imports, Χριστὸς, the very Christ.

3. I shall argue that Jesus was that person.

4. I shall explain in what manner, in what respects, to what purposes, Jesus, in the New Testament, is represented as Christ.

5. I shall make some practical application of the point.

iv. 25.

John i. 21. I. For the first particular. Christ is a name, or title, importing office and dignity; being the same with Messias, that in Greek, this in Hebrew, signifying, the Anointed; the which appellation we find attributed to several persons upon the following ground: Of ancient times, in the eastern countries,



xix. 15.

(abounding as with good oil, so with many delicate SERM. odoriferous spices,) it seems generally to have been the manner, (as from Hazael the Syrian his being Kings anointed may probably be collected,) it was however such among the Jews, to separate or consecrate persons, and things also I might add, designed to any great or extraordinary employment, by anointing them with ointments composed of those ingredients; they symbolizing, or denoting thereby, as it seems, both a plentiful effusion upon them of gifts and faculties qualifying them for such services; and also a comfortable and pleasant diffusion of good and grateful effects expected from them; (from the use of things, the performances of persons thus sanctified.) Thy name, saith the spouse in the Canticles, Cant. i.z. is an ointment poured forth; that is, thy name is very delightful, very acceptable. And, Behold, Ps. cxxxiii. saith David, commending brotherly love and concord, how good and pleasant a thing it is for brethren to dwell together in unity; it is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard: so good and pleasant were those employments hoped to be, to which men were by such unction inaugurated. We find especially three sorts of persons, to whom this consecration did, by divine appointment, belong; kings, priests, and prophets; persons by whose ministry God of old did manage his intercourse with men, in governing them and communicating his blessings to them, both in an ordinary way (so he used kings and priests) and in an extraordinary manner, therein he employed prophets; which sorts of persons are therefore styled God's anointed; kings and priests more frequently, but sometimes also prophets; as in that of the Psalm;

1, 2.



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