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ences and operations, graces and fruits; the Spirit of faith, the Spirit of love, the Spirit of repentance, the Spirit of grace and supplication, the Spirit of glory and fanctification, the Spirit of conviction and confolation, the Spirit of light, the Spirit of life, the Spirit of liberty, the Spirit of power and a sound mind : whatever be the hopelefs and helpless, the dead, drooping, and desperate-like cafe that the foul can be in, there is a promise of the Spirit suitable thereto, if I mightenlarge. And, indeed, the promise of the Spirit is the firit promise that is accomplished in begetting children to God; all the children of promise are made fo by the promise of the Spirit taking effect upon them, as a Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Christ, testifying of Christ, and giving the foul Paul's experiences, " He revealed his Son in me."
It is not the promised blessing of the Spirit, that quickens dead fouls, and Legets children unto God; “ The wind blows where it listeth, and thou hearest the found thereof, but canst not tell whence it comes, nor whither it goes; fo is every one that is born of the Spirit, John iii. 8. Awake, O north wind; come thou fouth ; blow upon my garden, that the spices thereof may flow out," Song iv. 16. It is the promised flowing of the Spirit, that alone can make happy communion-days. O for that flood promised! "I will pour water upon him that is thirily, and fiords upon the dry ground; even my Spirit upon thy feed, and my blefling on thine offspring,” Ifa. xliv.3. Yea, he is promised, not only as an overflowing flood, but as an overflowing spring; “ The water that I shall give him, shall be in him a well of water, springing up to everlasting life," John iv. 14.
4. All things else, in, and with these three, are matter of the promise; “ Ile that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how fhall he not with him also freely give us all things :” Rom. viii. 32. And, indeed, where there is a promise of God, a promise of Christ, a promise of the Spirit, there must be a promise of all things ; “ All things are yours, for ye are Christ's, and Christ is God's.” She that hath the husband, hath all
things that are the husband's; and feeing Christ is the Heir of all things, his bride cannot but inherit all things, Rev. xxi. 7. I have read of an ancient deed of gift made by one of the first kings of England, giving all that is from heaven to the centre of the earth; fo that if there be minerals in the bowels of the earth, they are comprehended in the gift : fo God, in promising and giving himself, and his Son, and his Spirit, does in and with him give all that he hath, and all that he is worth ; all the mines in the bowels of God, all the mines in the bowels of Christ, and all the mines of the bowels of the Spirit, are promised: and, O consider with yourself, what unsearchable riches, what unfathomable treasures of grace and glory, are in these mines! and what sweet and blessed fruits grow upon this tree of the new-covenant promise! and what a blessed thing it is to be the children of promise! And here the matter of the promise might be enlarged into innumerable particulars. Why, they are the children of that promise, “ A new heart will I give you, and a new Spirit will I put within you ; and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.” They are the children of that promise, Tbey fall be all taught of God. They are the children of these
promises, I will sprinkle clean water upon you, and you shall be clean; from all your filthiness, and from all will I cleanse you. Children of that promise, “ I will be merciful to your unrighteousness, your fins and your iniqnities will I remember no more. I will subdue your iniquities: and, Sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under the law, but under grace. I will never leave thee nor forsake thee. Fear not, for I am with thee; be not dismayed, for I am thy God. When thou passest thro' the fire, I will be with thee, that the flames kindle not upon thee: and when thou pallelt thro’ the waters, I will be with thee, that the floods do not overflow thee." There is a promise of peace with God, they are children of; This Man shall be tbe Peace. There is a promise of pardon they are the children of; “ I, even I, am he that blotteth out thine iniquity, for mine own' name's fake, and will remember thy fins no more.” There is a promise of
protection they are children of; “ A man shall be a hiding-place from the wind, and a covert from the storm; as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land." There is a promise of provision they are children of ; " Bread shall be given thee, and thy water shall be made sure.” There is a promise of healing they are children of; “ I will heal your
backlidings, and love you freely.” There is a promise of knowledge and illumination they are children of;
They shall all know me, from the least to the greatest.” There is a promise of faith they are children of; “ I will leave in the midst of thee an afllicted and poor people, and they fall trust in the name of the Lord,” Zeph. iii. 12. There is a promise of love they are children of; “ I will circumcise their heart to love." There is a promise of repentance they are children of; “They shall look on him whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn.” There is a promise of holiness ; “ Sanctify them thro’ thy truth, , thy Word is truth.” It is true, that it is a part of Christ's prayer to his Father, John xvii. 17.; but his prayer is as good as any promise in all the Bible. There is a promise of perseverance that they are the children of: I will make an everlasting covenant with thee; I will not depart from thee to do thee good; yea, I will put my fear in thy heart, and thou shalt not depart from me.” In a word, there is the promise of victory over death ; “Death shall be swallowed up in victory. Thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory, thro’our Lord Jesus Christ.” There is a promise of everlasting enjoyment of him ; So shall we be ever with the Lord. It were endless to tell of all the promises they are the children of; not that all and every one of the promises are in the same mannerclearly applied to every believer ; but if they be the children of one newcovenant promise, they are the children of all : even as all the curses of the law are linked together like an iron chain, insomuch that when a man is under one curse, he is under all the curses of the Bible ; so all the promises of the gospel are linked together like a golden chain, insomuch that he that gets one promise, gets all: thoughi perhaps it is but one link of the chain that he finds his heart fastened to, or one promise that is applied, yet the application of that infers an interest in all the rest.
Thus you see what is the matter of the promise, and surely you may fee much matter here for faith to feed and work upon.
3dly, Let us consider the nature and quality of the promise. And,
I. It is a great and precious promise : “ Whereby are given to us exceeding great and precious promises, that by these you might be partakers of the divine nature,” 2 Pet. i. 4. And, indeed, the matter of the promise, as already described, declares that it is exceeding great and precious; and the effect of it, as here described, making the believer a partaker of the divine nature, O how does it discover the greatness and preciousness thereof! And the relation of the promise to God as the author, to Christ as the purchaser, and to the Spirit as the applier thereof; the relation of it, I say, to this great God, hews what a great promise it is : besides that, it is the price of precious blood, and the object of precious faith, and the channel of the communication of great and precious blessings. But of these, perhaps, more afterwards.
2. It is a new promise ; hence fo frequently called the New Covenant, as Heb. viii. 8. It is a new promise, in opposition to the old promise of life to man's perfect personal obedience in the covenant of works. The old promise was a promise of life, upon condition of perfect obedience of our own; but there was no promise of grace to do: but the new promise is a promise upon the perfect obedience of another, and of grace to do also ; not to obtain life and salvation again by our doing, but to glorify the God of our life, by whom we have obtained salvation, iThef. v. 9. The old promise of life stood upon the changeable righteousness of man; and so was forfeited : the new promise stands upon the unchangeable righteousness of a God-man; and so cannot be forfeited by these that, through grace, take hold of it; or rather on whom it takes hold. Therefore,
3. It is a fure promise, sure to all the feed; “ Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace, to the end the promise might be sure to all the feed," Rom. iv. 16. Hence it is called, Tbe fure mercies of David, Isa. lv. z. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but not one jot nor title of God's word, nor of God's promise. See Isa. liv, 18. “ For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed, but my kindness shall not depart from thice, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, faith the Lord, that hath mercy on thee. ---It is an everlasting covenant, well ordered in all things and sure,” 2 Sam. xxxiii. 5. Indeed, the better ordered it is, the more fare and unchangeable it is : and so well is it ordered of infinite wisdom, that there is nothing in it, that should be out; and nothing out of it, that should be in; nothing wanting for God's glory, and the finner's welfare. --What can be wanting therein, when he, who is All in all, is in it? And so well is it ordered, that both the first grace, the last grace, and all grace, is promiseci therein ; beginning grace, advancing grace, and crowning grace, is promised in it; therefore it must be sure. O may faith be set a work, when we are speaking of thefe things!
4. It was a dear-bought and conditional promise to Christ; to Christ, I say, the Mediator of the covenant, it was a dear-bought and conditional promise ; it was upon the condition of his obedience unto death : and here is the great ground and foundation of the promise, next to the fovereign, grace and good-will of God to poor miserable finners; it is Christ coming under the law, to redeem them that were under it, Gal. iv. 4, 5. Hence the covenant of promise is called, the new testa ment in his blood; his blood is called, the blood of the covenant: this is what makes all sure, that Christ's obedience and satisfaction was the condition of the promise ; and the condition is fulfilled by his bringing in everlasting righteousness, and giving his life a ranson for many. All the promises here are dipt in his blood; and the great condition of all the promises of the gospel, is, Christ fulfilling, in our room and stead, the condition of the violated covenant of works; that is, perfect obedience to the precept of it, which we had broken ; and complete satisfaction to the penalty, threatening, and curse of it, which we had incurred. Though Christ, indeed, hath not believed, repented, VOL, IV.