Owen - BX9315 O81

I 106 flUMSLE 7NQt1IRy INTO TOE them should be conceived in any sense to answer unto the other. That is, there is nothing which answers.any rule, notions, or conceptions of justice; nothing that might be exemplary unto men in the punishment of crimes, that the sins of an infinite number of men, de- serving every one of them eternal death, should be ex- piated by the temporary sufferings of one were man, so as to demonstrate tho righteousness of God in the pun- ishment of sin. But God doth not do these things for . shew or appearance, but according unto the real exi- gence oftlrc holy properties of his nature. And on that supposition, there must be a proportion between the things themselves, namely, the sufferings of one, and the deliverance of all. Nor could the faith of man ever find a stable founda- tion to fix upon on the supposition before mentioned. No faith is able to conflict with this objection, that the sufferings ofone mere man should beaccepted with God as a just compensation for the sins of the whole church. Men, who, in things of this nature, satisfy themselves with notions and fancies, may digest such suppositions. But those who make use of faith, for their own delivery from under a conviction of sin, the nature and demerit of it, with, a sense of the wrath of God, and the curse of the law against it, can find no relief in such notions or apprehensions. But itbecame the wisdomof God, in the dispensation ofhimselfherein unto the church, so to order things, as that faith might have an immoveable rock to build upon. This alone it hath in theperson Of Christ, God .. and man, his obedience and sufferings,' Wherefore those by whom thedivine nature of theLord Christ is denied, do all of them absolutely deny also, that he made any satisfaction unto divine justice for sin. They will rather swallow all the absurdities which the absolute dismissionof sin without satisfaction or punish- ment doth bring along with it, than grant, that a mere man could make any such satisfaction byhis temporary sufferings for the sins of the world.. And on theother hand, whoever .cloth truly and sincerely believe the di- vine person of Christ, namely, that he was God and man in one person, and, as such a person, acted in the whole work ofmediation, he cannot shut his eyes against the glorious light of this truth, that what he did and spffered in that work, most have an intrinsic worth and excellency in it, out- balancing all the evil in the sins of mankind;. that more honour and glory accrued unto the INFINPfE WISDOM OF 'GOD, holiness and law of God by his'obedience, than dishon- our was cast on them by the disobedience of Adam and all his posterity. . 4. The way whereby the church was to be recovered and saved, was bysuch works and.actings as one should take on himself to perform in the way of an office com- mitted unto him for that end. Tor whereas man could not recover, ransom, nor save himself, as we have prov- ed, the whole must be wrought for him by another. The undertaking hereof by another, must depend on the infinite wisdom, counsel, andpleasureof God, with the will and consent of him who was to undertake it. So also did the constitution ofthe way and means in particular, whereby this deliverance was to be wrought. Hereon it became his office to do the-things which were required unto that end. But we have before proved a- part by itself that nooffice unto this purpose could be discharged towards God, or the whole church, by any . one who was a man only. Ishall not therefore here far- ther insist upon it, although there be good argument in it, unto our present.pu pose.- 5. Ifman be recovered, he must be restored into the same state, condition, and dignity wherein he was plac- ed before the fall. To. restore him with any diminution, of honour and blessedness, was not suited unto divine . wisdom and.bounty. Yea, seeing it was the infinite grace, goodness, and mercy of God to restore him, it seems agreeable unto the glory of divine excellencies in. their operations, that he should be brought into a bet- ter and more, honourable condition than that which he had lost.. But before the fall, man was not subject nor, obedient smto any but God alone. Somewhat less he was in dignity.than the angels, howbeit he owed them, no obedience; they were his fellow-servants::and as for all other things here below, they were made subject unto him, and put under his feet, he himself being in subjection unto God alone. But if lie were redeem- ed and restored by one who was a mere creature, he could not he restored unto this state and dignity: for on all groundsofright and equity, he must owe all service and obedience unto him, by whom he was redeemed, restored, and recovered, as the author ofthe state where- in he is. For when we are bought with aprice, we are not our own, as the apostle affirms, 1 Cor. vi. 19. 20. We are therefore his who hat& bought us, and himwe are bound to serve in our souls and bodies, which are his,