Owen - BX9315 O81

ON THE GLORY OF CHRIST. 5 pleasure in it unto them that cannot hear; nor the most thefaith of Christ, the righteousness Which is of God by beautiful colours unto them that cannot see. It would be nobenefit unto a fish to take him from the bottom of the ocean, filled with cold and darkness, and to place him under the beams of the sun. For he is no waymeet to receive any refreshment thereby. Heaven itself would not be more advantageous unto persons not renewed by the Spirit of grace in this life. Hence the apostle gives thanks unto the Father, who bath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light, Col. i. 12. Indeed the beginning here, and the fulness of glory hereafter, are communi- cated unto believers by an almighty act of the will and graceof God. But yet he bath ordainedways andmeans whereby they may be made meet receptive subjects of theglory so to be communicated unto them. That this wayand means is by the beholding oftheglory ofChrist by faith, shall be fully declared in our progress. This therefore should excite us unta this duty; for all ourpre- sent glory consists in our preparations far futureglory. 2. No man can by faith take a real view of this glory, but virtue will proceed from it in a transforming power, tochange him into the same image; 2 Car. iii. 18. How this isdone, and howwe become like untoChrist, by be- holding his glory, shall be fully declared in our progress. 8. Theconstant contemplation of the glory of Christ, will give rest, satisfaction, and complacency unto the souls of them who are exercised. therein. Our minds are apt tobe filled witha multitude. fperplexed thoughts, fears, cares, dangers, distresses, passions, and lusts, which make various impressions on the minds of men, filling them with disorder, darkness, and confusion. But where the soul is fixed in its thoughts and con- templations on this glorious object, it will be brought into, and kept in an holy, serene,. spiritual frame.. For to be spirituallyminded, is life andpeace.. And this it loth, by taking off our hearts from all undue regard unto- all thingsbelow, in comparisonof thegreat worth, beauty, and glory of what we are conversant withal. Phil. iii. 7: But what things weregain to me, those I counted lossfar Christ. ver.8.. Yea, doubtless, and Icount all things.but less, farthe excellency oftlze knowledgeofChrist Jesus my Lord; for whozn. I have sufered the loss of all things, and do count them but dungthat 'maywin Christ, ver. 9. And befound in hint, =not havingmine own right- eousness, which is of the Law. but that which is through r. 13 faith: ver. 10. That Imay know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of' his su,fferings, being made cózformable unto his death: ver. 11. If by anymeans Imight attain unto the resurrection ofthe dead. A defect herein makes many of us strangers unto an heavenly life; and to live beneath the spiritual refresh- ments and satisfactions that the gospel cloth tender un- to us. 4. The sight of the glory of Christ, is the spring and canse of our everlasting blessedness. We shall be ever with the Lord,. I Thess. iv. 17; or, be with Christ which is best of all. Phil. i. 23.. For there shall we beholdhis glozy, John xvii. 24. and by seeing him as he is, we shall be made like him, 1 John. iii. 2. which is our ever- lasting blessedness. Theenjoyment ofGod bysight, is commonly called theBEATIFIC vision; and it is the sole fountain ofall the actings of our souls in the state of blessedness, which the old philosophers knew nothing of;. neither do we know distinctly what they are, or what is this sight of God. Howbeit, thiswe know that God in his immense' essence is invisible unto our corporeal eyes, and will be so to eternity; asalso incomprehensible unto our minds, For nothing can perfectly eemprehend that which is in- finite, but what is itself infinite. Wherefore- the bles- sed and blessing sight which we shall have of God, will be always in thefaceofJesus Christ. Thereinwill that manifestation of theglory ofGod in his infinite perfec- tions, and all their blessed operations so shine into our souls as shall immediately fill us with peace, rest, and gloryk These thingswe hereadmire, but cannot comprehend.. We know not well what we say, when we speak of them; yet is there in true believers a foresight and foretaste of this glorious condition. There enters sometimes by the word and Spirit in their hearts, such a. sense of the UNCREATED, GLORY.' of God, shining forth in.Christ, as affects and. satiates their souls with ineffable joy. Hence ariseth that peace of God, which isabove all understand- ing,. keeping our hearts and minds through Jesus Christ. Phil. iv. 7. Christ in believers the hope of glory, gives them to taste of the first fruits of it; yea some times to bathe their souls in the fountain of life, and to drinkof the riversofpleasurethat are at his righthand. Where any are utterly unacquainted with these things, they arc 0