Watts - Houston-Packer Collection BX5207.W3 S4x 1805 v.1

SERM. iC.1 THE BIDDEN LIFE OF A CHRISTIAN. 171 The word GOD is taken in scripture, either in general for the divine nature, which- is the same in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit ; or, in particular, for the person of the Father. And I. do not see any absolute necessity to determine, precisely, which was the meaning of the apostle in this place. The three particulars by which I -shall endeavour to explain it, will include both. The life of a christian is hidden in God; that is, in the all- sufficiency of the divine nature, in the purpose of the divine will, and in the secret engagements of the Father to his Son Jesus Christ, in the covenant of redemption. 1. The christian's life is hidden in the all- sufficiency of the divine nature. And there are immense stores of life, of every kind, hidden in God, in this sense. This whole world of beings, that have, and have not souls, with all the infinite varieties of the life of plants, ani- mals; and angels, were hidden in this fruitful and inex- haustible fund of the divine all-sufficiency, before God began to create a world. All things were then hidden in God ; for of him are all things, and from him all things proceeded, Rom. xi. 36. Now this all-sufficiency- ofGod consists in thosepowers and perfections, where- by he is able to do all things for his creatures, and ready to do all for his saints; these are most eminentlyhis wisdom, his almightiness, and his goodness. There are inconceivable riches of goodness and grace in God, which are employed in furnishing out life for all his saints ; and all the unknown preparations of future glory are the effects of his grace. Eph. ii. 4, -5. God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, whenwe were dead in sins, bath quickened us toge- ther with Christ ; and he did it for this purpose, that in the ages to cone, he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace, in his kindness towards us through Christ Jesus, ver. 7. Not all the goodness that appears in the rich provision he hath made for all the natural world of creatures, nor all the overflowingbounties of his provi- dence, since the first, creation, are equal to those un- searchable treasures of mercy and. goodness, which he bath employed for the spiritual welfare, and eternal life and happiness of his own chosen children ; and in the secret of this grace were all the blessings of his'covenant hidden from eternity.