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part faith, love, and submission, and gives them an interest in the righteousness and grace of the Redeemer, so that they are one with him; and that they all stand or fall together" because I live ye shall live also." His treatise relates entirely to what we have been in the habit of calling, the execution of the covenant of grace; and his views are correct, but he has not added a single idea to the stock in circulation time out of min!.
But why did he not professedly examine whether the Scriptures reveal an eternal covenant between the Father and Son? Why does the whole amounnt of his reasoning go to the denial of such a transaction ? I understand that there are several who are about adopting his theory; all of whom avoid this ground; one of them at least who was tolerably ardent in the cause; when pressed with scriptural authority for an eternal covenant, and asked whether there was any covenant before the creation of man; declined giving any answer. From which it was natural to conclude, that this part of the subject has not been studied by them. The only honourable conjecture I can form respecting the cause of so strange an omission, is, that whenever some favourite idea, sparkling with the bril liancy of novelty, takes possession of the human mind, all the stars in the intellectual horizon are absorbed in its splendour; wherever we turn, wherever we look, we see it, and it alone: It enlightens all subjects, it resolves all difficulties, it removes all objections; and we are perfectly astonished how purblind mortals contrived to grope their way on this dark planet before the rising of our star. To this species of fascination all who think, are subject, and subject according to the ardour of their temperament, and the only cure is to lock up the pen, and clap a wafer on the lips;
and leave to time, the great subduer of all our passions, to moderate a romantic ardour.
I have proved from the Holy Scriptures that the Son of God was set up-was anointed,a covenant head from all eternity-That a seed was given him to be the fruit of his soul's travail-That power was given him over all flesh, that he might give eternal life to as many as the Father had given him-That all those that the Father hath given him shall come unto him-That he rejoiced from all eternity in the habitable parts of the earth, and that his delights were with the sons of men.
I do therefore assert, that the covenant of grace was made between the Father and the Son from all eternity: That the Son of God did stand in a relation to the elect, which relation did not exist between him and the rest of mankind; And it is this relation which we mean, when we say that Christ Jesus represented the elect in the covenant of grace. If the special relation be admitted, it is idle to dispute about the sound by which we shall express it. Thus far we are sure we are right, and cannot possibly be wrong. Mr. M'Chord will doubtless be looking forward for difficulties; and will already be asking, If this special relation be admitted, how can you reconcile to candour, moral truth, and justice, God's commanding those who do not stand in this peculiar relation to his Son, to accept his righteousness, and submit to his authority? I reply that this difficulty shall be decided on its own proper ground. It is not forgotten nor shall it be forgotten. In the mean time, we are sure that in the eternal covenant, the Son of God was anointed a covenant head with a special relation to his elect; which relation did not exist between him and the non-elect. We are sure this is God's truth; and we shall not dread any
difficulties to which it may expose us. The same divine truth which carries us into difficulties, will carry us out of them.
We are now on the ground to decide a question which we have in reserve. By turning back to page 23, the reader will find it. This question is now decided, but I shall sum the evidence. Mr. M'C.'s idea is, that a covenant can include only beings actually existing, that Adam represented himself in the covenant of works, and that his posterity are represented only when they actually exist, and they are represented only as a part of the original Adam. He carries the same idea into the covenant of grace; that no believer is represented by Jesus Christ till he actually exists as a believer. If this be true there could be no such thing as an eternal covenant, because there was nothing to represent. Most assuredly the Son of God did not represent himself in the covenant of grace-most undoubtedly he did not come into this world to seek and to save the Son of God: most undoubtedly he did not shed his blood to ransom the Son of God, either personally or substantially considered. As it was impossible that he should represent himself, so according to Mr. M'Chord's ideas it was impossible that he should represent human persons, or even human nature, for human nature did not exist. There could be no representation, unless any one can brook the blasphemous nonsense, that the glorious Son of God condescended to become the representative of nothing. On this system there was no eternal covenant. But I have the word of the Eternal Son of God, that he was anointed a covenant head from all eternity-And that before the earth existed his delights were with the sons of men. My bayonet now more
than crosses that which opposes me. It drinks the heart's blood of the new system but it is not mine -He gave it me, and his be all the glory. But I cannot but conjure those who are for setting aside the eternal covenant of grace, only to consider with whom it is they are at issue-THE WAY, THE TRUTH, AND THE LIFE. Lay thy hand on thy mouth. Say no
The reader will have the goodness to apply the principle of this reasoning to the covenant of works; and to satisfy himself that human beings may be included in a covenant long before they are born-That God had determined the number, and the names, and the bounds of the habitation, of all who should be affected by Adam's covenant, in his own infinite mind, when he bound them all in the covenant of works. He knew them all, and intended that they jointly and individually should be affected by that covenant. To this covenant Adam consented, and it did not require more humility than he possessed to assent to the will of God; notwithstanding that, he could not foresee the extent of the consequences-Though a similar assent to the will of God without an explanation might perhaps require more humility than we can furnish in this philosophical age. But alas, we lost our humility at the same time that we lost our wisdom, and all our other merits.
But gentle reader, thou art probably tired, and so am I wishing thee therefore a good night, and sound repose, I withdraw. In the morning we shall be called to tempt our perilous way.
Per rupes, scopulosque, adituque carentia saxa,
The last phrase is too strong: there is a way; and the pillar of a cloud by day, and the pillar of fire by night shall be our guide; when it stands we encamp, and when it moves we march; and though we should lay our bones in the naked sands, we shall not attempt to cross the awful wilderness by any other guide.
Of Christ's Righteousness.
The subject proposed for discussion, is not properly any part of the question at issue respecting the new doctrine. Mr. M'C. has the same views respecting the righteousness-the atonement-the obedience and sufferings of Christ, with the purest churches of the reformation. This public notice is given, least the reader finding me in opposition to that gentleman in some things, should imagine me opposed to him in every thing; and should infer that because 1 attempt to establish a doctrine, therefore he denies it. It is indeed, one of the grand secrets of controversy, to prove what your adversary admits, and it is still better to prove what nobody ever denied-To heap argument on argument, and demonstration on demonstration-To challenge your opponent and the whole human race contradict you— And then you may fling out a dozen or two hard terms about intellectual force, and intellectual debility, about prejudice, and fools, and ideots; nine-tenths of your readers will all this time imagine that your opponent is the driveller at whose solid head the thunderbolts are launched; and that you are the intellectual giant, whose single arm is law. When