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of grace. And we drink it, when we are so persuaded that God in regard to the blood of Christ, hath granted to us, pardon, eternal life, and all spiritual blessings, as to have peace and comfort in a sense of God’s love ; as to rejoice in it as our life, our wealth, our glory, and highest felicity: so, as to be animated to all obedience to the will of God, in opposition to all temptation ; so as, to delight in communion with God ; and so, as to devote ourselves to his honour and service. This is eating the body of Christ, as it was broken upon the cross for us ; and this is drinking his blood, as shed for the remission of sins. And it is, by the express command of Christ, the duty of christians thus to shew his death, or to declare the ends and designs of it, and to apply it to their instruction and comfort, in their solemn assemblies, till he comes ; or to the end of the world. 1 Cor. xi. 26. 186. And all this to me is a clear proof, that the cross and blood of Christ, as it is the ground and reason of the remission of our sins, is considered as a mean of our sanctification ; and, being made known to us for this very purpose, we are obliged to use it as such. Which if we do; our sins will be forgiven, and we shall obtain eternal life ; if not ; our sins will not be forgiven, and we shall perish. For Christ's death, however it was a reason of freely bestowing upon us antecedent blessings,” yet, in reference to our final salvation, hath its effects with God, only so far as it hath its proper-effects upon our hearts. If we are not sanctified by it, we cannot be saved by it. Which is a strong confirmation of this whole scheme. [119.] 187. As therefore our Lord’s sacrifice and death is so plainly represented as a powerful mean of improving our virtue ; as we have no sufficient ground in scripture to consider its virtue and efficacy in any other light; and as we cannot be pardoned and saved, unless we are sanctified by it ; I conclude, that it is a reason with God for the forgiveness of sins, and the donation of blessings, because it is a proper mean of cleansing us from all filthiness of jlesh and spirit, and of pèrfecting holiness in the fear of God.
188. It was on account of Christ's perfect obedience and goodness, that God (who for this purpose sent him into the world) was pleased to publish the remission of sins, and all other antecedent gifts and blessings, because this noble donation is thus bestowed for a reason, which is the strongest inducement to, and the most perfect pattern of universal holiness. So that we cannot certainly know, that God will pardon our sins, and bless us with immortality; but we must at the same time know, that this inestimable gift is planted upon the most perfect virtue, intended to be an example for our imitation: and consequently, that we can obtain the possession of eternal life only by imitating it.
189. As our prayers are a reason of God’s conferring blessings upon us; because our prayers are means of producing pious dispositions in our minds : so the blood of Christ, or his perfect obedience or righteousness, makes atonement for sin, or is a reason of God’s forgiving our sins; because the blood of Christ is a mean of cleansing us from sin.
190. Thus, in a way perfectly rational and scriptural, we obtain all the blessings
of redemption, that can with any truth be supposed to be obtained upon any other scheme. And thus also every objection against atonement by the blood of Christ, so far as I can see, is silenced. 191. Thus we are well guarded against the dangerous error of expecting to obtain mercy and salvation by a presumptuous, unactive reliance upon the blood and merits of Christ; or by the imputation of his righteousness to us, instead of obeying, or while we neglect to obey his commands delivered in the gospel. For thus the atonement of Christ's blood stands in perfect consistency with all the principles and declarations of the gospel ; strongly enforces every command of duty, and every threatening to disobedience; and precludes all hopes of ever seeing God without personal righteousness. Which, so far as I can see, is clearly and universally true of no other scheme of redemption but this. 192. Thus the virtue and efficacy of Jewish sacrifices, (in their il:érior kind and degree, as types, figures, and emblems) coincide with the virtue and efficacy of Christ's sacrifice. They were symbolical instructions in holiness ; till Christ came
and offered up himself a sacrifice of real holiness, obedience, and goodness, to instruct us in a more perfect manner; and to obtain, what mere types and figures could not procure, a full and eternal redemption for us.*
* The Mosaic service and sacrifices certainly had relation to Christ and his sacrifice, as shadows or types, representing the substantial piety and holiness, which Christ exhibited, and the acts of intercession and address to God, which he performed on our behalf. For instance ; (1.) The Jewish sacrifices were without blemish ; Christ's without spot, Heb. ix. 14. (2) Jew. ish sacrifices were offered to God : So was Christ’s sa. crifice, Eph. v. 2. (3.) Blood of bulls and goats answered to Christ’s blood, Heb. ix. 13, 14. (4.) Sacrifices burnt without the camp were types of Christ, Heb. xiii.
10–12. (5.) Jewish high-priest resembled Christ, our.
high-priest, Heb. ix. 7, 11., (6.) Holy of holies in the temple represented the highest heaven. (7.) The highpriest's entrance with blood into the holy of holies represented Christ’s entrance with his own blood into the highest heavens, Heb. ix. 7, 11, 12. (8.) Consequently, the sacrifices on the annual day of atonement were shadows of Christ’s sacrifice. But it was not necessary the Jewish worshipper should understand all this ; or that he should discern the relation his worship bore to the sacrifice and mediation of our Lord.`"For his worship, though of an inferior kind, was nevertheless complete in its parts ; as it was an instruction in universal holiness ; as it represented the mercy of God to a sinful world, and, when duly performed, was carried on in a proper dependence upon divine grace. And thus it was acceptable to God, and effectual to obtain eternal life, as it stood in connexion