Owen - BX9315 O81

28 THE PERSON OF CHRIST THE GREAT image of the other: for he and the Father are one; and So he receives as hfs personality, so all divine excellen- cies from the Father; so he is the essential image of the Father's person. 8. As he took our stature upon him; or in the assump- tion of our nature intopersonal union with himself, in order unto the work of his mediation. So he is the only representative imageof God unto us; in whom a- lone we see, know, and learn all the divine excellencies, so as to live unto God, and be directed unto the enjoy- ment of him. All this himself instructs us in. He reflects it on the Pharisees as an effect of their blindness and ignorance, that they "had neither heard the voice of God at any time, nor seen his shape," John v. 37. And in opposition hereunto, he tells his disciples, that "they had known the Father, and seen him," chap. xiv. 7. And the reasons he gives thereof, is because theythat knew him, renewthe Father also. And when one of his disciples not yet sufficiently instructed in this mystery, replied, " Lord show us the Father, and it suficeth us," ver. 8.; his answer is, "Have I been so long time with you, and hast thou not known me? he that hath seen me, hath seen the Father," ver. 9. Three things are required unto the justification of this assertion. 1. That theFather and he be of thesame nature, have the same essence and being. For otherwise it would not follow, that he who had seen him, had seen the Fa- ther also. This ground of it he declares in the next verse, The Father is in me, and I am in the Father: namely, because they wereone in nature and essence. For the divine nature being simply the same in them . all, the divine persons are in each other by virtue of the oneness of that nature. 2. That he be distinct from him. For otherwise there cannot be a seeing of the Father by the seeing of him. He is seen in the Son as represented by him, as his image; the 'Word, the Son of the Father as he was with God. The unity of nature, and the distinc- tion ofpersons, is the ground of that assertion of our Saviour; he that hath seen me, halls seen the Father also. 3. But moreover, theLord Christ bath a respect here- in unto himself in his entire person as he was incarnate, and therein-unto the discharge of his mediatory work. Have I been so long time with you, and hast thou not known nee? Whilst he was with them, -dwelt among one and the same thing, cannot be the image of itself in that wherein it is one. 2. The Son is said not only to be 1r ndrga in the Fa- ther, in the unity of the sameessence: but also ogh to, rtarsça, or ott,, with the Father, or with God in the dis- tinction of his person. John i.7. -" The Word was with God, and e the word was God." The Word was God in the unity of the divine essence; and the Word as with God, in its distinct personal subsistence. The Word, that is, the person of the Son, as distinct from the Father, was with God, or the Father. And in this respect he is the essential image of the Father, as he is called in this place, and Heb. i. 2. and that because he partakes of all the same divine properties with the Father. .But although the Father on the other side be,partak -. er of all the essential divine properties of the Son, yet is not he said to be the image of the Son. For this pro- perty of an image respects not the things themselves, but the manner of theparticipation of them. Now the Son receivesallfom the Father, and the Father nothing from the Son. Whatever belongs unto the person of the Son, as the person of the Son, he receives it all from the Father by eternal generation; for " as the Father bath life in himself, so hath he given unto the Son to have life in himself," John v. 26. He is there- fore the essential image of the Father, because all the properties of the divine nature are communicated un- to him, together with personality fromthe Father. 3. In his incarnation the Son was made the represen- tative image of. God unto us, as he was in his person the essential image of the Father by eternal generation. The invisible God, whose nature and divine excellencies our understandings can make no approach unto, doth in him represent, exhibit, or make present unto our faith and spiritual sense, both himself and all the glori- ous excellencies of his nature. Wherefore our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, may be considered three ways. 1. Merely with respect unto his divine nature. This is one and the same with that of the Father. In this . respect the one is not the image of the other, for both are the same. 2. With respect unto his divine person as theSon of the Father; the Onlybegotten, the eternal Son of God.