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ty. Were the stony ground hearers, the tares and the many that shall say, Lord, Lord, &c. at the last suing for admittance renewed? Were they who ied for fear of persecution, regenerated, who went out from us, because they were not of us? These descriptions were all privileged with the partici. pation of gospel ordinances; belonged to the visible society of the saints, yet upregeperatí.
The truth on this subject appears to be this, that the Church in old and new testament times, has had true and false members. The true members always were made so by the regeneration of the Holy Spirit. This benefit is certainly implied, and, that not obscurely, in the great promise of this dispensation. I will be your God. This the apostle Peter quotes to encourage his 3000 converts. 6. The promise," says he “is to you and to your children.” This he mentions to encourage them that they should receive the Holy Ghost. It is then evident that if a dispensation, whereby God is manifested in mercy throngh Jesus Christ, and by the Spirit of God be a dispensation of grace, this covenant with Abraham must be so called, i. e. The Abrahamic civenant was gracious. Not only has it continued to unfold its stores of grace to all ages past, but will in all ages of time and eternity to come.
I will be your God. It intimated that all the
I several advances of the covenants execution, would take place in their proper order and time ; of course, that Christ would appear as the great seed that he would be cut off, but not for him.
self, that he would bring in an everlasting righteousness, Dan ix. 24, that in him, all nations of the earth should finally be blessed.
Hence it is evident that a great many blessings of this covenant are yet to be enjoyed. We are not without our interest in it, if we be believers, God is our God, and the God of our seed, as well as he was the God of Abraham and his. We reckon that he is so by the greatest grace. This promise will be eminently accom, plished, when the Jews shall be brought in by the fulness of the Gentiles. All Israel shall be saved, as it is written, Isaiah lix. 20.
* And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Jacob, saith the Lord. As for me, this is my covenant with them, saith the Lord ; My Spirit that is upon thee and my words which I have put into thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth ; nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed's seed, saith the Lord, from he neeforth and forever. Then shall men be particularly blessed in the seed of Abraham ; all nations shall call him blessed, according to the promise of this gracious covenant. The people shah praise hiin, all the people shall praise him : The earth shall yield its increase, and God, even our God, shall bless us. Whereas, but a small people, inhabiting a little spot of territory, were aaciently his peculiar possession, then shall the kingdoms of the world, become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ. This great de
dominion shall extend from sea to sea, and from the river unto the ends of the earth. The whole world shall be filled with the knowl, edge of the glory of the Lord. One shall say, I am the Lord's, and another shall subscribe him. self by the name of Jacob; and another shall subscribe with his hapd unto the Lord, and surname himself by the name of Israel. They shall say, come and let us join ourselves unto the I.ord, in an everlasting covenant that shall not be forgotten. But even in all the glories, and felici. ty of the millenial age, we shall not exhaust the blessings and grace of this covenant. ! I will be your God, no, they shall come from the east, and from the west, and sit down with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, in the kingdom of our heavenly Father. They shall encircle, according to this charter, the Eternal's throne. They shall inhabit those mansions, which the Redeeming Seed hath purchased, prepared, and preoccupied. Then all the ransomed of the Lord, shall meet on the summit of the heavenly Sion, and join in the harmonious choir of praise to God and the Lamb, in the new Jerusalem, for ever and ever,
The permanent sanction of the moral Law.
IT is very observeable that in all the dispensations of Providence, and grace, the young and helpless are preserved and defended. Among the animal tribes, the operations of providential kindness to this effect, are very conspicuous. By the storgeal affection and parental instinct their indigent and imbecile young are nourished, with unwearicd kindness, and defended sometimes by fraud, sometimes by force, with astonishing skill, and courage. The weak seem to say, I am strong ; and the timid who have recourse to no 'defence for themselves, but flight, will, when, guarding their young, place themselves in belligcrent attitude, against the fiercest assailant, and most rapacious destroyer.
To this interesting phenomenon, God's care of his people, and children, is often compared. In the period of Israel's redemption, and the subscquent Sinaic legislation, God's care for the seed of Israel, and the children of his people, is remarkable.
The Egyptian so':cy, worse thi a savage cruelty, contemplated the diminution of Israel's strength. --Every male infart, for this purpose, haust be put to death. But no, the matroos of
Israel are strong, and the midwives of Egypt are tender. The children are spared; the more they are oppressed, the more they grow--hey come out not one wenk among all their tribes. The Egyptians are caught in their own net--their prime youth are cut of the l.ord of hosts saves one and rears him up in the Egyptian palace, who is to deliver Israel's sons. The children of Israel sighed by reason of the bondage. And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac and with Jacob." Those who were saved from the waters of the river, sing an epinikeon over their cnemies immersed in the depths of the sea..
In that deliverance the future good of the infants of Abraham's posterity, is particularly consulted. The adults thus redeemed, with the exception of two, fall in the wilderness.
When he brought this ransomed family out of the iron furnace, he would not lead them through the populous region which lay along the shore of the Mediterranean, but led them through the de. vious wilds of Arabia Petrea. This he did, partly because he knew their hearts were tender, they might be afraid of military force by the way ; partly that he might teach them, in early life, the knowledge of his covenant and law. They were, as a nation, just in early infancy ; unfit yet to act for themselves, l'et were they very obviously re. garded by God's covenant, and so must be ma. triculated in his school, that they might be educated, as those who were heirs of a heavenly