Owen - BX9315 O81

nEPOSTrORY OP the counsels of God," Acts xx. 27. Of them all, the person of Christ is the sacred repository and treasury; in himare they to be learned. All their efficacy and use depends on their relation unto him. He is the cen- tre and circumference of all the lines of truth, that is, which is divine, spiritual, and supernatural. And the beauty of it, is presented unto us only in his face or person. We see it not, we know it not, but as God shines into our hearts to give us the knowledge of it therein, 2 Cor. iv. 6. So he testifieth of himself, I ans the truth, John xiv. 6. He is so essentially, as he is one with the Father, the God of truth, Deut. xxxii. 4. He is so efficiently; as by him alone it is fullyand effectually declared. For " no man bath seen God at any time; the only begotten, who is in the bosom of the Father, he bath declared him," John i. 18. He is so substantially, in opposition unto the types andshadows of the Old Testament; for in him dwelt thefulness ofthe Godhead bodily, Col. ii. 9. The body is of Christ, ver. 17. He is so subjectively ; for all divine truth relating to the saving knowledge of God, is treasured up in him. In him are hid all the treasures ofwisdom and know- ledge, Col. ii. S.; that is, the wisdom and knowledge of God in his counselsconcerning the vocation,sanctifica- tion, and salvation of the church; concerning which the apostle falls into that holy admiration ; O the depthsof the richesboth ofthewisdom andknowledge ofGod! Rom. xi. SS. And they are called treasures in a twofold ac- count, both mentioned together by the Psalmist. How precious are thy thoughts unto me, OLord, how great is the sum ofthem! They are treasures because precious and invaluable, and are therefore usually preferred above all earthly treasures which men most highly esteem, Prov. iii. 14, 15.: and they are so because of the greatness of the sum of them ; and therefore also called unsearchable riches, Eph. iii. 8. These precious unsearchable treasures of the wisdom and knowledge of God, that is, all divine supernatural truths, are hid, or safely deposited in Christ, in and fromwhom alone they are to be learned and received. So are we said to learnthe truth as it is inJesus, Eph. iv. 21. And the knowledge of all evangelical sacred truth, is in the scripture most frequently expressed by the knowledge of him, John viii. 19. chap. xvii. 3. 2 Cor. ii. 14, chap. iv. 5, 6. Eph. i. 17. Phil. iii. 8. a SACRED TRUTH. 33 X10.-1 John i. 1, 2. chap. ii. 4, 13, 14. chap. v. 20. 2 Pet. ii. 20. Setting aside what we have discoursed and proved before, concerning the "laying of thefoundation of all the counsels of God in the person of Christ," and the representation of them in the ineffableconstitution there- of, I shall give some few instances of this relation of all supernatural truth unto him; manifesting that we can- not learn them, nor know them, but with a due re- spect thereunto. 1. There are two things wherein the glory of truth Both consist; first, its light; secondly, its efficacyor pow- er. And both these do all supernatural truths derive from this relation unto Christ. (1.) Notruth whatever brings any spiritual light unto the mind but by virtue thereof. " In him is life, and the life is the light of. men," John i. 4. He is the "true light which lighteth everyman that cometh into the world," ver. 9. Where- fore, as truth is the only means of illumination, so it cannot communicate any light unto the mind, but only as it is a beamfrom him, as it is an organ to convey it from that fountain. Separated from him and its re- lation unto him, it will not retain, it cannot' communi- cateany realspiritual light or understanding to thesouls of men. How should it ifall light be originally in him, as the scripture testifieth? Then alone is the mind ir. radiated with heavenly truth, when it is received as pro. ceeding from, and leading unto theSun ofRighteousness, the blessed spring of all spiritual light, which is Christ himself. Whatever notional knowledge men may have of divine truths, as they are doctrinallyproposed in the scripture, yet if they know them not in their respect unto the person ofChrist as the foundation of thecoun- sels of God; if they discern not how they proceed from him and centre in him, they will bring nospiritual sav- ing light unto their understanding. For all spiritual life and light is in him; and from him alone. An in- stance hereof we have in the Jews. They have the scrip- tures ofthe Old Testament, wherein the substance ofall divinetruth is revealed and expressed. And they are diligent in the study of them. Howbeit their minds are not at all illuminated, nor irradiated by the truths con- tained in them, but they live and walk inhorribledark- ness. And theonly reason hereof is, because they know not, because they reject the relationof them unto Christ, withoutwhichthey aredeprivedof allenlighteningpower. I 2