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But unholy sinners have no part with Christ in this matter : the holiness of Christ's nature is not imputed to them, or reckoned theirs. There is a holy birth of the second Adam, to take away the guilt of sin that we are born in : but such as are not washed by Christ from their sin, have no share in it.
The evidence of this is, that whosoever have part in the holiness of Christ's birth by imputation, are really born again in their own persons : because Christ's holy birth is the efficient meritorious cause of the new birth of his members. Hence the apostle saith, 2 Cor. 17,“ If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature : old things are passed away, behold, all things are become new.” Col. ii. 11, “In
“ whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh, by the circum-. cision of Christ.” Now, the unholy are not born again; therefore they have no part with Christ in his holy birth : and so they have nothing to answer the law's demand for holiness of nature.
2. Christ has lived a righteous life, in perfect obedience to the law's commands : Philip. ii. 8, “ He became obedient unto death.” He did it as a public person : and all his have part with him in it; they obeyed in Christ, as they sinned in Adam, Rom. viii. 3, 4, “ For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin condemned sin in the flesh; that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”. Hence are these epithets of the church, undefiled, without spot, complete in him. So the law's demand of obedience, as the condition of life, is answered as to them: their part in Christ's obedience answers it fully.t
But the unholy have no part with Christ in the obedience of his life. For Christ's obedience being meritorious of our sanctification, the want of the latter is a plain evidence of no part in the former; and that upon the ground of justice, which requires the delivering of the thing purchased, upon the application of the price, Rom. viii.1,-4. If ye have obeyed legally in Christ, ye obey really in your own persons; for Christ's obedience hath a conforming virtue in those to whom it is imputed, Rom. viii. 29, “ For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son." 1 John ii. 6, "He that saith he abideth in him, ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.” Inherent righteousness necessarily follows impnted righteousness. An unholy life argues no part in the holiness of Christ's life: therefore there is a bar between heaven and the unholy.
f. See View of the Covenant of Grace, Head 3, ut supra.
3. He has suffered, to the full satisfaction of the law in its threatening and curse for sin, Philip. ii. 8, “He humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Gal. iii. 13, “ Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us : for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree.” And Christ suffering as a public person, all that are his suffered in him, having part with him in his sufferings. They were legally crucified with hiin, Gal. ii. 20, died with him, Rom. vi. 10, 11, and were buried with bim, Col. ii. 12. So the law's demand of satisfaction is answered for them, since they have part with Christ.*
But the unholy have no part with Christ in his sufferings. An undeniable evidence whereof is their not being conformed to him in his death, Philip. iii 10. The death of Christ will infallibly prove the death of sin, when one has part with Christ in it; Rom. vi. 6, “Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin."
Gal. v. 24, “They that are Christ's, have crucified the flesh, with the affections and lusts." As sure as Christ died for the sins of the elect, they will die to sin that have communion with him in it: for as death made its way from the members to the head, till it laid him in the grave; so the merit of his death will make its way from the head to them to their sanctification. So that demand of the law lies on their heads unanswered.
4. He has brought in everlasting righteousness. In what he was, did, and suffered, he fully satisfied what the law had to demand, coming np, as a public person, to an exact conformity thereto. This is the righteousness he has wrought, sufficient to cover every sinner in the sight of God, and to render him accepted as righteous. All that are his have part with him in it, Psal. xly. 13; Cant. vi. 10; Rev. iii. 18. So they that have a righteousness that is law-biding.
But the unholy have no part with him in it. For wherever righteousness imputed is on any man, inherent holiness is in him. By the former satisfying the law, the strength of sin is taken away: so that the man cannot be living in sin as formerly. Hence the apostle saith, Rom. vi. 2, “How shall we that are dead to sin, live any longer therein ?"
Secondly, Christ has received the reward of his work; and so he has an inexhaustible treasure; and all that are his have part with him 7 it. 1. Christ is risen again from the dead. By the authority of the
ew of the Covenant of Grace, head 3, ut supra.
Father he is discharged from the grave; death is never to seize him more : Acts ii. 24, “God raised him up, having loosed the paius of death : because it was not possible that he should be holden of it." And all his have part with him in his ressurrection: Eph. ii. 6, “God hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus : forasmuch as he rose as a public person. But the unholy have no part with him in his resurrection. For,
1st, They are still dead in their sins, while they live in them. Where is there part then in Christ's resurrection? They that have part with him are risen with him, risen by virtue of his resurrection; the power of the resurrection of the head raising the members from death in sin, Col. ii. 12; and iii. 1. Alas! the grave-clothes of the sins of the flesh, which ye are not putting off, but keeping on, and the ties whereof are still as fast upon you as ever, speak you destitute of any part with Christ in this matter.
2dly, They are still members of the congregation of the dead, Eph. ii. 1, 2, 3. When our Lord rose, he left the congregation of the dead in their graves; yea, he conversed not with the world thereafter, as before his death. And so, whenever a soul gets part with Christ, it leaves the world lying in wickedness, comes out from among them, and walks no more according to the course of this world. Hence the apostle saith, Rom. vi. 4, 5, “We are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death; we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection.” What shadow of ground have they then to pretend to a part with him, that are not walking in newness of life, but just according to the course of the world.
2. Christ is now ascended up into glory, where he sits at the Father's right hand, Mark xvi. 19. He ascended into it, as a public person, to take possession of it for us, Heb. vi. 20. And all his have part with him in it, as the members of the glory of the head : Eph. ii. 6, “God hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus."
But the unholy have no part with him in it. For,
1st, They are yet lying in the filth of their natural state, through original and actual sin, Psal. xiv. 3; all over defiled, Tit. i. 15. They may have worldly glory, outside glory, such as ariseth from bravery, wealth, and honour; yea they may glory in wickedness, that is really their shame. But there is no heavenly glory or any, but by sanctifying grace, 2 Cor. iii. 18; that only makes a glorious
inside, Psal. xlv. 13; in so far as thereby the purity of the divise image is on the soul.
2dly, Neither is their heart there, nor are they making forward to it. Our Lord tells us, Matth. vi. 21, that “where the treasure is, there will the heart be also.” And therefore the apostle urges, Col. iii. 1, 2, to “seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God; to set our affection on things above, not on things on the earth.” What part then have they with Christ in his glory, whose affections are not on things above, but on the earth, Phil. iii. 19, “ who mind earthly things ?” They carry themselves as natives of the world, not as pilgrims in it. Their great aim is, to compass designs of worldly profits and pleasures, but not to be fitted for glory, 1 John iii. 3.
3. Christ has the Spirit of life and holiness dwelling in him, as the head of his body mystical. So the Spirit of life is in him, to be communicated; and it is the purchase of his death, Rev. iii. 1, “ He hath the seven Spirits; seven Spirits answerable to the seven golden candlesticks; enough to quicken and actuate them all. Hence he is said to quicken, Johp v. 21, 26. And all his have part with him therein, Philip. ii. 1. The same Spirit that is in the head, is in the members too, in so much that “the Spirit of God dwells in them; and if any man have not the Spirit of Christ be is none of his."
But the unholy have no part with him in his Spirit For,
1st, He is the holy Spirit, “the Spirit of holiness,” Rom. i. 4; so called not only from the work of sanctification ascribed peculiarly to him, but from the holiness of his nature, in opposition to the unclean spirit, Mark iii. 29, 30, to attest all the works of God without himself, whereof he is the immediate worker, to be holy. So that in whomsoever he dwells, and actuates, they must needs be made holy: Rom. viii. 2, “For the law of the Spirit of life, in Christ Jesus, hath made them free from the law of sin and death." Since then the unholy are under the law of sin as the subjects thereof, and under the law of spiritual death, they bave no part with Christ.
2dly, They have the spirit of the world in them, conforming them to the world, in their frame of heart, way, and walk, 1 John iv. 4. It is an unclean, unholy spirit, whereby they cannot relish nor favour the holy things of God: but things that are fleshy, sensual, carnal, and earthly, Jude ver. 19; not without a secret enmity at true holiness, Rom. viii. 7, and cannot hold on in the way of God, as Caleb did, Num. xiv. 24.
3dly, They live in the state wherein Adam left them, without a saving change. 1 Cor. xv. 45, Adam was made "a living soul,” but Christ “a quickening spirit.” What men derive from Adam, they
have; a nata ral life, a life of reason, gifts of knowledge, &c. But what men derive from Christ, they have not; they are not quickened by him with the Spirit of life unto God. But if they had part with Christ, they would be spiritually quickened souls; as sure as having part with Adam, they are living souls.
4. There is a fulness of grace in the man Christ: Col. i. 19, “For it pleased the Father, that in him should all fulness dwell.” John i. 14, “The Word was full of grace and truth.” Grace is given him without measure, John iii. 4; and all that are his partake with him in it, it being in him as in the storehouse; it is so poured on him as the head, that it runs down to the skirts of his garment, John i. 16.
But the unholy have no part with him in his grace. For,
1st, They are not partakers of the divine nature, that new nature which is derived from Christ, by the communication of grace from him by the Spirit into his mystical members, whereby they escape the corruption of the world, 2 Pet. i. 4. Instead of that, the old nature reigns in them, which is enmity against God, and serious religion. The old man with bis deeds is still in his vigour, bas not yet got his deadly wound.
2dly, Whatever good or grace may seem to be in them, it is but in some one or few particulars. There are still several black buts in their religion; they never make thorough work of it, Psal. cxix. 6, They have not respect unto all God's commandments.
For they are never made new creatures; though some things, yet never are all things become new with them: An evidence that they have no part in the grace of Christ; for then should they have grace for grace.
3dly, Hence they do not bear Christ's image: they are not like him, in the set of their spirit, and tenor of their walk : 1 John ii. 6, “For he that saith he abideth in him, ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.” They look like the old Adam, sinful, sensual, and averse from God. But O how unlike the holy crucified Jesus, and how quite unconcerned to be like him, their own consciences bear witness. But the having part with Christ makes a person like him.
5 Lastly, Christ is anointed of the Father with the Spirit to be the Prophet, Priest, and King of his church. Hence he says himself, Is. Ixi. 1. “The spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek, he hath sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captive, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound." And the apostle Peter saith, Acts x. 38, that “God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost, and with power; who went