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their reconciled Father in Christ Jesus: God the Son as their Saviour and Redeemer, who
which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him :" John i. 18. He has not only declared him in his revealed word, but he has declared him in his own person, for "he that hath seen "him" hath seen the Father." John xiv. 9. Hence the names of our Lord Jesus Christ denote expression : the "Son" is the expression, or image of the Father—“ the WORD " is the expression of the idea in the mind. Philippians ii. 6. He is "in the FORM of God;" Form or appearance denotes expression-" The IMAGE of the invisible God," Colossians i. 15. is that in expression which the Father is in abstract-" the express IMAGE of his person," Hebrews i. 3. not ikov as above but xapakτn the character of the seal expressed on the wax-" the brightness of his glory; " Hebrews i. 3. the very lustre and brilliancy of his attributes, the perfection of his perfections, and the glory of his glory manifested or expressed in its most luminous splendour. "It pleased the Father that" thus" in him should all fulness dwell; " Colossians i. 19. and thus "in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily;" Colosians ii. 9. or substantially, visibly, intelligibly.
The Holy Ghost is the AGENT of Deity-In creation," and the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters." Gen. i. 2. In redemption. "The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee." Luke i. 35. At his Baptism Jesus "saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him;" Mat. iii. 16. he "led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil; " Matthew iv. 1. and it was "through the eternal Spirit" that he "offered himself without spot to God." Hebrews ix. 14. In regeneration" Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." John iii. 5.
And these three Persons are one God.
took upon him the nature of man for them; and God the Holy Ghost who sanctifies, supports and comforts them. Here is the doctrine of the
The second Unity springs out of the first, and is that of God and man in the Person of the EXPRESSION of Deity,—Immanuel, God-man, thus capable of becoming the Mediator, Redeemer, and Intercessor of fallen man, by taking our nature into his Deity, atoning for all our sins by the all-sufficient merits of his blood, and making each sin-polluted soul that believes in him, the partaker of the divine nature again, that it may be an inheritor of glory.
The third Unity springs out of the second, and is that of the Head with its body, the Church-the spiritual union of the believing soul with its God, through the agency of the Holy Spirit, "taking" of the things of Christ, and "shewing" John xvi. 15. them to that soul with experimental comprehension and loveliness. The imparted graces of which this union, or divine fellowship consists, are Christ's, that "in all things he might have the pre-eminence," Colossians i. 18. as well in our sanctification, as our justification. The agency by which it is originated, maintained and perfected, is that of the Spirit in the regeneration, sanctification and growing consolation of each individual believer, as the Spirit "glorifies Christ in receiving of his grace, and applying it to the Church. These are the things "revealed, which belong to us and to our children :" they are unfathomable by the acutest intellect, and they are intelligible as applied by the Spirit to a humble and simple soul, even like that of " a weaned child;" as seems to be plainly intimated by the Apostle, when after a full enforcement of the blessedness of this doctrine of the Trinity, he concludes by addressing the Church under the character of children. "Little children, keep yourselves from idols." In this view the Trinity is practically intelligible; the very purpose I apprehend for which it is graciously revealed; and "this is the true God, and eternal life." 1 John v. 20, 21.
Trinity applied in power for the very purpose for which it was given-God intelligible as a God of mercy, in all the characters and offices in which he offers himself as a gracious God to recover a lost sinner, and to prepare his soul for heaven and all the volumes that have ever been written on the subject are condensed in the essence of these brief words, THE LOVE OF THE FATHER, THE GRACE OF THE SON-and THE COMMUNION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT. And as a child may perceive the virtue of this gracious representation of the Godhead in his heart, though he cannot explain, he may feel, and say, "truly our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ."
THE last party yet remains to be noticed, and that most deeply interested in the view of Baptismal privileges we have taken above.-This is THE CHURCH.
"Me have ye bereaved of my children," 1 has been her just complaint for centuries past. Faith is the Parent of her children, and faith having failed, her family has been proportionably contracted. It is from faith in the promise that the Church also expects the blessing. "Receive him, O Lord, as thou hast promised by thy well-beloved Son"-" that this Infant may enjoy the everlasting benediction of thy heavenly washing, and may come to the eternal kingdom which thou hast promised by Christ our Lord.” She entertains no doubt herself as to the performance of the promise towards the baptised Infant, provided the proper means be observed, These means she insists on largely in her address to the Sponsors; and as she entertains no doubt herself, so it is her unwearied effort, through
1 Gen. xlii. 36.
out the whole of the Baptismal and its kindred Services, to impress the minds of her people, the Sponsors, and the Child when arrived at years of discretion, with the same undoubting confidence in the promise of a Covenant-God, that he will assuredly "grant" the "things" that they “have prayed for," and "for his part will most surely keep and perform the promise" he has made.
It is therefore her desire continually to enlarge the communion of her saints; and for this purpose she would have every child introduced into her communion visibly and openly, so soon as he may conveniently be brought to the church. She therefore directs, "The Curates of every Parish shall often admonish the people that they defer not the Baptism of their children longer than the first or second Sunday next after their Birth, or other Holy Day falling between, unless upon a great and reasonable cause, to be approved by the Curate." "And also they shall warn them, that without like great cause and necessity they procure not their children to be baptized at home in their houses." The Church further enjoins, "The people are to be admonished, that it is most convenient that Baptism should not be administered but upon Sundays, and other Holy-days, when the most number of people come together as well for that the congregation there present may testify the receiving of them that be newly baptised into the number