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allowed, is not peculiar, or appropriate to any speculative ideas formed concerning his original dignity; but common to and practicable upon all schemes. In some other places the love of Christ is, by our divine master himself, represented as consisting in obedience to him, or as deriving from obedience its essential nature. If ye love me, keep my commandments. He that hath my commandments and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me; if any man tove me, he will keep my words ; he that loveth me not, keepeth not my sayings. John xiv. 13, 21, 23, 24. Now what is in other places represented as the ground of this obedience 2 no other than this, the authority with which Christ acted. Thus Peter; Moses truly said, a prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you, of your brethren, like unto: me him shall ye hear in all things whatever he shall say unto you. Thus the voice from heaven declared: “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am “well pleased ; hear ye him.” Mat. xvii. 5. In the 28th verse, it is true, the love of Christ is. represented as an affection, which will give those who possess it a sensible interest in what relates to the dignity and happiness of their master. But then the ground or incentive to this generous sympathy, which Christ expresseth an expectation of meeting with in his disciples, is not any prior glory, but his future exaltation. He refers this influence of their love, not back to any any past period of his being for its cause, but, forwardto a future event. “If ye loved me, ye would re“joice, because I said I go unto my Father, for my “Father is greater than I.” These remarks may be applied to ascertain the full force of that passage, which X. Y. Z. considers as deserving of particular notice. I Cor. xvi. 22. If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema Maranatha. X. Y. Z. it may be presumed, judges that the awful denunciation, with which the love of Christ is here enforced, implieth that there is a peculiar criminality, an aggravated sin, in not loving the Lord Jesus Christ. This is to be granted. But doth it therefore follow, that the guilt of it is to be estimated only, or principally by the idea of a pre-existent glory, which he laid aside for our sakes ; and which condescension was a peculiar claim to our gratitude : The apostle doth not assert, he doth not even insinuate, this. For, while the nature of a Christian's love to his Master is well ascertained by the former passages to consist in obedience to his precepts, and in an attachment to his cause, the ground of this duty, it is intimated by the apostle, is not any character supported by Christ before the world was, but the character he sustained after his appearance on earth, especially after his resurrection, when he was made Lord and Christ”. For

* Hunc titulum addit, ut causam insinuet ob quam Jesum

Christum diligere debeamus, & nisi id faciamus merito simus anathemate

For this is the obligation, at which the apostle points by the language, which he uses concerning his master: our Lord Jesus Christ, i.e. him, who is sat down at the right hand of God: him, who is exalted to be a Prince and a Saviour. X, Y, Z. perhaps, may deem power and authority to be improperly considered as a ground of love. And this must be allowed, if by love we mean only the animal passion; but if, as it appears from the preceding passages to be the case, we understand by it the rational affection, or rather an attachment to the doctrine and obedience to the precepts of Christ, authority is the proper ground of it : from hence doth the obligation to it arise ; especially when it is power lodged in the hands of a benevolent person, and authority invested in the friend and saviour. One text, which maybe considered as very important in this discussion, is Ephesians ili. 14, 17, 18, 19. For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ—that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that you being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth and length, and depth and height, and to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge. Here the language of the apostle is so full and energetic, that some may suppose, the idea of Christ's voluntary degradation from a former state of glory must be admitted, to justify the force and strength of it. But a more careful inspection of the passage will show this to be a mere supposition. Now, not to say that the love of Christ cannot necessarily be understood to mean other, than the love of God by Christ +, the love of which he is the revealer and instrument, it is plain, that though the apostle meant the benevolence exercised by Christ himself, yet he did not refer to the labour and condescension, at the expense of which Christ hath served our eternal interest; but to the benefits of redemption: to the blessings secured and imparted, and not to the humiliation and sufferings by which they were secured. It appears from the context, ver. 1–12. that the apostle's mind laboured with the subject which offered to his thoughts. What was this subject 2 Not the condescension of Christ; but the mystery, which from the beginning of the world had been hid with God, the preaching to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ. On this account it was, that he bowed his knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, that they might know the love of Christ : or the vast extent of the christian scheme of

themate feriendi. Quis enim non debeat amare suum dominum a dextris Dei sedentem, suum Redemptorem et Servatorem 2 Quis si hoc non faciat, non mereatur ut anathema sit 2 et si eum etiam dominum suum esse abneget, ut anathema sit maranatha P Vide

Slichtingium in loc, tle * Charitas Christi, id est, qua a Deo per Christum diligimur, quae Dei quidem est, sed quia a Christo nobis revelata et oblata est, ideo charitas vel gratia Christi dicitur, ad Rom. i. 15, and viii. 35. con

fer eum, 39. Vide Crellium in loc. grace ;

f

grace ; its unlimited influence, and comprehensive

reach. Another passage to which, in this enquiry, we must advert, is Ephes. vi. 24. Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Or with incorruption, as it is in the margin of our bibles. Mr. Locke's note, on this text, as just and precise, deserves attention. “In this epistle to the “Ephesians, Paul sets forth the gospel as a dispen“sationso much, in everything, superior to the law, “that it was to debase, corrupt, and destroy the gos“ pel, to join circumcision and the observances of the “ law as necessary to it. Having written this epistle to this end, he here, in the close, having the same thought still upon his mind, pronounces favour on all those who love the Lord Jesus Christ an incorruption, i. e. without mixing or joining “any thing with him in the work of our salvation, “ that may render the gospel useless and ineffectual.” The only text, which remains to be produced under this head, is 1 Pet. i. 8. Whom having not seen ye love. The only idea, on the subject, peculiar to this clause, is that of the circumstance which set off to advantage the affection which the christians, whom Peter addressed, felt towards their divine master; namely, that it was not aided and invigorated by a personal acquaintance with its object. But this passage suggests nothing particular concerning the nature and obligations of our love to Christ. And though G 1I]

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