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tion on chap. ix. 11, 12. where the tabernacle is spoken of in the same sense that here it is. But besides the reasons that shall be given immediately for another interpretation, two things will not comply with this. For, 1. There is no reason why the apostle should express the same thing, first under the name of the sanctuary, and then of a tabernacle. 2. There is no especial reason why it should be added peculiarly concerning the heavens," which God hath fixed and not man," for this was never questioned.

4. I say, therefore, that by this true tabernacle, the human nature of the Lord Christ himself is intended. Hereof he is the minister, herein doth he minister before God above. For,

1st, Hereof the old tabernacle was a type. Thence is the expression taken, and thereunto is opposition made in the epithet true.' This therefore is our best direction and rule in the interpretation of this expression. For look what that type did signify, what was to be the substantial antitype of it, that is the true tabernacle whereof the Lord Christ is the minister. For all agree that it is called true, in opposition and in answer to that which was umbratile and figurative. Now that tabernacle was not erected to be a type of heaven, nor is any such thing intimated in the Scripture. A token, pledge, and means it was of God's presence with his people here on earth, of his nearness to them, whence also he is said to dwell among them. But this he doth really and substantially only through Christ. He therefore alone is this true tabernacle. For,


2dly, In answer hereunto, when he was incarnate, and came into the world, it is said, that sexy, He fixed his tabernacle' among us, John i. 14. That is the signification of the word which we have translated to dwell,' because the tabernacle of old was the way and means of God's dwelling among the people, in the pledges of his gracious presence. All that old curious structure for an habitation for God, did only represent his taking our nature on him, fixing his tent thereby among men. What was the pattern of this tabernacle shewed to Moses on the mount, we must inquire, on ver. 5.

3dly, He himself calleth his own body his temple, with respect to the temple at Jerusalem, which was of the same nature and use with the tabernacle, John ii. 19. 22. And this he did, because his body was that true substantial temple and tabernacle whereof he was the minister.

4thly, That is the true tabernacle which God truly and really inhabiteth, and on the account whereof he is our God. This was the nature, use and end of the tabernacle of old. God dwelt therein in the signs and pledges of his presence, and was on the account thereof the God of that people, according to the terms of the covenant between them, Exod. xxv. 8. Rev. xxi. 3. That therefore wherein God dwells really and substantially,

and on the account whereof he is our God in the covenant of grace, that, and no other, is the true tabernacle. But this is in Christ alone," for in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily," Col. ii. 9. Thus the human nature of Christ is that true substantial tabernacle, wherein God dwelleth personally. 5thly, He is the only way and means of our approach to God in holy worship, as the tabernacle was of old; which we have elsewhere declared.

That alone which seems to be of any force against this interpretation, is, that the human nature of Christ is that wherein he is the minister of this tabernacle; it cannot therefore be the tabernacle itself wherein he doth minister, and therefore the place of his abode must be intended by the tabernacle whereof he is the minister.

Answ. By the same rule it would follow, that because Christ is the high priest, he is not the sacrifice, for the priest and the sacrifice among men cannot be the same. Howbeit Christ offered himself only. And the reason of these things is, that he was in his own person, and what he did therein, to answer all those types of priest, sacrifice, altar, tabernacle, and what belonged thereunto. He was the body and substance of them all, Col. ii. 17. No one of them was able to represent the fulness of grace that was to be in Christ. Therefore were there many of them ordained, and those of various sorts. And therefore his being eminently intended in one of them, no way hinders his being so in another. He was all in himself, priest, tabernacle, altar and sacrifice.

Lastly, The efficient cause of this true tabernacle is declared both positively and negatively; "which God hath pitched and not man," nže Kugios. It is in the article, confined to the tabernacle, and extends not to the sanctuary mentioned before." Of the true tabernacle which the Lord pitched." And hereby this tabernacle is distinguished from both the sanctuaries, the typical here below, and the real above, even heaven itself. For it was not of the same building with either of them, as the apostle declares, Heb. ix. 11.

En, pitched,' fixed.' It is a word proper unto the erection and establishment of a tabernacle. The fixing of stakes and pillars, with the fastening of cords thereunto, was the principal means of setting up a tabernacle, Isa. liv. 2. The preparation of the human nature or body of Christ is that which is intended. "A body hast thou prepared me," Heb. x. 5. And this body was to be taken down, and folded up for a season, and afterwards to be erected again, without the breaking or loss of any part of it. This of all buildings was peculiar to a tabernacle, and so was it with the body of Christ in his death and resurrection.



o Kuges. The author of this work was the Lord." This is the word or name whereby the writers of the New Testament do express the name Jehovah. And whereas, in the revelation of that name, God declared that self-subsisting firmitude and unchangeableness of his nature, whereby he would infallibly give subsistence unto his word, and accomplishment unto his promises, the apostle hath respect unto it in this great work, wherein all the promises of God became yea and Amen. How this tabernacle was prepared and fixed immediately by the Holy Ghost, acting the infinite power of God alone therein, I have at large elsewhere declared.

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It is added negatively, xas x arder, and not man.' Some suppose a pleonasm in the words, and that this expression is redundant. For to say it was pitched by God, sufficiently includes that it was not done by man. But the expression is emphatical, and the apostle hath an especial design in it.


1. The old tabernacle itself may in some sense be said to be pitched by God. It was done by his command, order and direction, as were all other ordinances of his appointment. But it cannot be said that God pitched it and not man, which excludes the whole service and ministry of man. For the ministry of men was used in the preparation, framing and erection of it. But the pitching of this true tabernacle was the work of God alone, without any ministry or service of men. body hast thou prepared me.'


2. The apostle hath an especial respect to the incarnation of Christ, without the concurrence of man in natural generation, This is expressed in answer to that inquiry of the blessed virgin, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?' Luke i. 34, 35.


This was the true tabernacle which the Lord pitched, and whereof Christ is the minister. And we may observe,

Obs. II. That all spiritually sacred and holy things are laid up in Christ.-All the utensils of holy worship of old, all means of sacred light and purification, were all placed and laid up in the tabernacle. And these were all patterns of the heavenly things themselves, which are all laid up in Christ the true tabernacle. They are all inclosed in him, and it will be in vain to seek for them elsewhere. For,

Obs. III. He hath the ministration of all these holy things committed to him. He is the minister both of the sanctuary and tabernacle, and of all things contained in them. Herein he stands ir no need of help or assistance, nor can any take his work out of his hand.

Obs. IV. The human nature of Christ is the only true tabernacle, wherein God would dwell personally and substantially.

The dwelling of God with men, was ever looked on as an infinite condescension. So Solomon expressed it in his prayer

at the dedication of the temple. But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven, and heaven of heavens, caunot contain thee,' 1 Kings viii. 27. But there are various degrees of this condescension, various kinds of this inhabitation of God among men. Under the Old Testament, he dwelt in the tabernacle and temple, by many symbols and pledges of his glorious presence. Such in especial was the ark and mercyseat; whence that which was done before the ark, is said to be done before the Lord, Exod. xxx. 8. This was, as Solomon expresseth it, a great condescension in the infinite, incomprehensible God, and there was a great glory accompanying this his presence. Under the New Testament, God dwelleth in his saints by his Spirit, whereby they become an holy temple to him. And of this inhabitation of God, I have treated elsewhere. But his dwelling in the human nature of Christ is quite of another nature than either of these, and his love, with his condescension, inconceivably more conspicuous than in them. Hence is that expression of our apostle, In him dwelt the fulness of the Godhead bodily,' Col. ii. 9. It is not any sign or token, it is not any effect of the divine power, goodness and grace that dwells in him, but the fulness of the Godhead, that is, the divine nature itself. And this dwelleth in him bodily, that is, by the assumption of the body, or the human nature into personal subsistence with the Son of God. How glorious should this be in our eyes! How did they admire the condescension of God of old, in his dwelling in the tabernacle and temple by the glorious signs of his presence! And yet was it all but a dark representation and shadow of this glorious love and grace, whereby he dwells in our nature in Christ.

Obs. V. The church hath lost nothing by the removal of the old tabernacle and temple, all being supplied by this sanctuary, true tabernacle, and minister thereof. The glory and worship of the temple, was that which the Jews would by no means part withal. They chose rather to reject Christ and the gospel, than to part with the temple, and its outward pompous worship. And it is almost incredible how the vain mind of man is addicted unto an outward beauty and splendour in religious worship. Take it away, and with the most you destroy all religion itself; as if there were no beauty but in painting, no evidence of health, or vigour of body, but in warts and wens. The Christians of old suffered in nothing more from the prejudice of the whole world, Jews and Gentiles, than in this, that they had a religion, without temples, altars, images, or any solemnity of worship. And in latter ages men ceased not, until they had brought into Christianity itself a worship vying for external order, ceremony, pomp and painting, with whatever was in the tabernacle or temple of old, coming short of it principally in this, that that was of God's institution for a

time, this of the invention of weak superstitious and foolish men. Thus is it in the church of Rome. And a hard thing it is to raise the minds of men, unto a satisfaction in things merely spiritual and heavenly. They suppose they cannot make a worse change, nor more to their disadvantage, than to part with what is a present object and entertainment unto their senses, fancies, carnal affections and superstitions, for that which they can have no benefit by, nor satisfaction in, but only in the exercise of faith and love, inclining us to that within the vail. Hence is there at this day so great a contest in the world, about tabernacles and temples, modes of worship and ceremonies, which men have found out in the room of those which they cannot deny but God would have removed. For so they judge that he will be satisfied with their carnal ordinances in the church, when the time is come that he would bear his own no longer. But unto them that believe, Christ is precious. This true tabernacle, with his ministration, in their estimation far excels all the old pompous ceremonies and services of divine institution, much more, all the superstitious observances of human invention.

Obs. VI. We are to look for the gracious presence of God in Christ only. Of old, all the tokens and symbols of God's presence were confined unto, and included in the tabernacle. There were they to be found, and no where else. Many altars the people of old did erect elsewhere, many high places they found out and prepared, but they were all sin and misery unto them: God granted his presence unto none of them all, Hos. viii. 11. xii. 11. And many ways there are whereby men may and do seek after the presence of God, after his favour and acceptance with him, not in and by this true tabernacle. But they labour in vain, and spend their strength for that which doth not profit. Neither the love, nor grace, nor goodness, nor mercy of God, are elsewhere to be found, nor can we by any other way be made partakers of them.

Obs. VII. It is by Christ alone that we can make our approach unto God in his worship.-All sacrifices of old were to be brought unto the door of the tabernacle. What was offered elsewhere, was an abomination to the Lord. With the instruments, with the fire, with the incense that belonged unto the tabernacle, were they to be offered, and no otherwise. And it is now by Christ alone, that we have an access in one Spirit unto the Father, Eph. ii. 18. He is the only way of going to him, John xiv. 6. And it is in and by his blood, that he hath consecrated a new and living way unto the holy place, ch. x. 19, 20.

Obs. VIII. It was an institution of God, that the people in all their distresses should look unto, and make their supplications towards the tabernacle, or holy temple, 1 Kings viii. 29, 30. And it is unto the Lord Christ alone, who is both the

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