Owen - BX9315 O81

ON VIE GLORY OP CHRFST. S creatures made in the image of God, and thereby in a state of love with him. All that they were, had or ho- ped for, were effects of divine goodness and love. And the life of their souls was love unto- God. And a bles- sed state it was, preparatory for the eternal life of love in heaven. 1. From this state they fell by sin, intoa state of en- mity with God; which is comprehensive of all miseries, temporal and eternal. 3. Notwithstanding this woeful catastrophe of our first state, yet our nature on many accounts was recov- erable unto the enjoyment of God, as I have at large elsewhere declared. 4. In this condition, the first act of love in Christ towards us, was in pity and. compassion. A creature made in the image of God, and fidlen into misery, yet capable of recovery, is the proper object of divine corn passion. That which is so celebrated in the scripture, as the bowels, the pity, the compassionof God, is the acting of divine love towards us, on the consideration of our distress and misery. But ad compassion ceasetb towards them whose condition is irrecoverable.- Wherefore the Lord Christ pitied not the angels that fell, because their nature was not to be relieved. Of this compassion in Christ, see Heb. ü. 10 I6. Isa. lxiii. 9.. 5. As then we lay under the eye of Christ in our misery, we were the objectsof his pity and compassion: but as he looketh on us as recoverable out of that state Iris love worketh in and by delight. It was an incon- ceivable delight unto him, to take a prospect of the de- liverance of mankind unto the glory of God, which is also an act of love. This is divinely. expressed, Prov. viii. 30, 31. " Then was I by him, as, one brought "- up with him: and I was daily his delight, rejoicing " always before him: rejoicing in the habitable part of 44 his earth, and my delights were with the sons of " men." As it bath been elsewhere explained. 6. If it be inquired, whence this compasion and de- light in him should arise, what should be the cause of them; that he who was eternally blessed in his own self sufficiency, should so deeply concern himself in our lost forlorn condition? I say it did so, merely from the infinite love and goodness of his own nature, without the least procuring inducementfrom us, or any thing in us. Titus iii. 5. " Notby works of righteousness, 5' which we have done, but according to Isis mercy he " saved as by the washing of regeneration, and renew- " ing of the Holy Ghost." 7. In this his readiness, willingness, and delight, springing from love and compassion, the counsel of God concerning the way of our recovery, is as it were proposed unto him. Now this was a way of great diffi- culties and perplexities unto himself; that is unto Isis person as it was to be constituted. Unto the divine' nature nothing is grievous, nothing is difficult; but he was to have another nature, wherein he was to undergo' the difficulties of this way and work. It was required of him, that he should pity us, until he had none left to pity himselfwhen he stood in need of it; that he should pursue his delight to save us, until his own soul -: was heavy and sorrowful unto tlaath; that heshould re- lieve us in our sufferings, by suffering the same things that we should have done. But he was not in the least hereby deterred from undertaking this work of love and. mercy for us; yea his love rose on this proposal' like the waters of a mighty stream against opposition. For hereon he says, Lo, I come to do thy trill, OGod; it is my delight to do it, Heb. x. 5, 6, 7. Ise.- 1..5, 6, 7. " The Lord God bath opened mine ear, and I was not 'rebellious, neither turned away back, i gave my back r' to the smilers, and my cheeks to them that plucked " off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and 1, spitting." 8. Being thus inclined, disposed, and ready in the eternal love of his divine person, to undertake the of- fice of mediation, and the work of our redemption; a body was prepared for him. In this body or human na- ture made his own, he was to make this love effectual in all its inclinations and actings. It wasprovided for hint' unto this end, and filled with all grace in a way un measureable, especially with fervent love, unto man- kind. And hereby it became a meet instrument to ac- tuate his eternal love in all the fruits'of it. 9. It is hence.'evident, that this glorious love of Christ doth not consist alone in the eternal actings of his di- vine person, or the divine nature in his person : such indeed isthe love of the Father, namely his eternal pur- pose for the communication of grace and glory, with his acquiescency therein;. but there is more in the love of Christ; for when he exercised this love, he was man also, and not Godonly. And in none of those eternal