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XVIII

INTRODUCTORY ESSAY.

church with

that

of

earthly

rulers.

Our

lord

having

compared

his

church to

a

kingdom,

and

those

who

bear

office

in

her

being

deno-

minated

rulers,

it

has been hastily inferred

that

as

earthly kings rule

by delegation

under

God,

the

sovereign

of

the

world,

so

may

the

officers of

the

church be

considered

as

ruling by delegation under

Christ,

the

sovereign of

the

church:

and

on

this

ground

it

has been

contended

that

the

admission of

a

visible

head

of

the

church, acting

as

the

vicar

of

Christ upon earth,

does

not

supersede,

but rather

sup-

pose

the

existence

of

an

invisible

head in

heaven. Now,

there

cer-

tainly

is

an

analogy drawn in

Scripture between the

church

of

Christ

and the

kingdoms of this world;

but

the

error

lies

in

overlooking

the

real point in

which

the

analogy holds true.

It

is

an entire mistake

to

suppose

that

as

the

moral Governor of

the

world

may

be said

to

delegate his

power of

jurisdiction to

civil

rulers,

so

Christ may be

said

to

have delegated his

spiritual

power of

jurisdiction to spiritual

rulers.

The

truth

is,

that

it

is

God alone,

as

the

supreme gover-

nor, who delegates

both

the

civil

and

the

spiritual

jurisdiction; and

while

he has committed

civil

government

to

the hands

of

civil gover-

nors,

he

has

intrusted spiritual

government,

not

into the

hands

of

spiritual

governors,

but

into

the

hands

of his

own Son,

the

sole

king

and head of his spiritual kingdom. The

metaphor

of

earthly

princes,

ruling under

God

and

for

God, is

applied in

Scripture not

to illustrate

the

power of church

-

governors,

but the

power of

the

Lord

Christ.

There

is

no analogy, therefore,

between any delegation

of

power

by

the

moral Governor

of

the

world

to earthly rulers and

the

appointment

by

Christ

of

officers

in

his church.

The real ana-

logy

lies

in

the

fact

that

as God

has delegated

a

kingly

power

to

earthly monarchs

over

their

peculiar

kingdoms,

so

has he delegated

a

kingly

power

to his

Son over

his church,

as

his peculiar

kingdom.

Let

us

take

as

an illustration the

case

of David,

an

eminent type

of

Christ in

his

kingly

office.

God

was

pleased to raise

him up to

feed

his people Israel,

assigning

him

that

nation

as his kingdom,

and

giving

him

the

sole

and undivided

possession of

its throne.

In

like

manner has he raised up

his Son

Jesus, and

given

him the

sole

and

undivided

possession of

his spiritual kingdom,

the

church.

Let

it

be

remembered

that

the

Mediator holds

and

exercises

his kingly autho-

rity

by delegation from

the Father:

"Yet

have

I

set

my

King

upon

my holy

hill

of

Zion."

Our Lord Christ

is,

in

truth,

God's vicar

and

vicegerent,

both in heaven and

on

earth.

And

to

suppose

that

he,

himself

the

delegate of

his Father,

when he went to heaven

"

to re-

ceive for

himself

a

kingdom,"

can

delegate his

powers

to others

is

utterly

monstrous.

The very

fact

that

"the

Lord

God

hath

given