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sound of scripture language, to the overthrow of the analogy of faith. Let saints rejoice that not one of those for whom Christ died shall come short of eternal life, for whom God did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, them he shall certainly glorify. But let it not be thought, from any thing we have said, that we have a wish to limit unduly the saving virtue of the Redeemer's blood. We repeat, that, in intrinsic worth, we regard it as infinite; nor would we be understood to mean that its actual efficacy is not greatly extensive. We deny that it is universal, but we rejoice to think, notwithstanding, that it extends to a multitude which no man can number that 'number without number' of redeemed men, who, gathered from every nation, and people, and kindred, and tongue, shall, with harmonious voices and grateful hearts, sing praises to the Lamb that sitteth on the throne, for ever and ever.
RESULTS OF CHRIST'S ATONEMENT.
THE results of the great doctrine we have thus endeavoured to explain, establish, and defend, are so numerous and diversified that an attempt fully to discuss, or even to enumerate them all cannot be presumed. But the present work might be deemed to be essentially defective were these altogether passed over without notice. We beg the reader's attention to the following.
I. The atonement serves to illustrate, in the most interesting manner, the CHARACTER OF GOD.
Even the natural perfections of Deity are thus illustriously manifested. What wisdom is shown in devising a way by which the grand object of redeeming mercy might be gained, in consistency with legislative rectitude, and the seemingly inharmonious conjunction of characters might be effected-'a just God and a Saviour.' No mortal mind, no angelic intellect could ever have conceived this plan, could ever have solved this problem. Well may it be characterised as a display of 'the manifold wisdom of God;' nor can we express ourselves regarding it in
more appropriate terms than by saying, 'He hath abounded toward us in all wisdom.'
In it we see the power, not less than the wisdom, of God. Powerful love, love stronger than death, must it have been, which moved the appointment of such a plan of salvation. Such a load of guilt as pressed on him who 'bare our iniquities,' such a weight of wrath as was endured by him whom 'it pleased the Father to bruise,' could have been borne by no power less than almighty. The curse which he sustained was sufficient to sink the whole guilty world of sinful men to the depths of perdition. What even when inflicted on angels who 'excel in strength,' requires to be broken up into portions and dealt out through the successive ages of eternity, was poured forth on the head of Emmanuel at once and in one unbroken torrent of accumulated vengeance. Nor do the effects resulting from the atonement of Christ, in his taking the prey from the mighty, calling into being a new creation, and performing all those acts of almighty grace which evince the gospel to be 'the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth,' give a less striking display of omnipotence.
Here also the moral attributes of God shine forth. Nowhere else do we meet with such a display of divine holiness. He is manifested, indeed, to be the Holy One, of purer eyes than to behold iniquity, who cannot look upon sin; for such is the immaculate purity of his nature that moral guilt must not be cancelled by a sovereign act of will, nor moral pollution wiped away by a mere effort of power, but sin sig
nally stamped with the brand of Jehovah's deepest abhorrence by the substitutionary sufferings of his own Son. By God's sparing not his own Son but delivering him up for us all, we are more impressively taught the inviolability of divine justice than we could be by laying open the caverns of endless despair, and disclosing to view the horrid and appalling scenes of suffering and woe which they present. In the cross of heaven's spotless Victim we read most plainly that God will by no means clear the guilty. The wrath of God is here revealed as it is nowhere else, against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men. The immovable determination of the divine nature, to visit every deviation from rectitude with its merited and appropriate award of judgment, is unanswerably demonstrated. Nor can any thing be conceived, better fitted to fill with terror such as perseveringly outrage the authority of the divine law, for, if the sword of justice was made to awake against the Shepherd, and smite the man who is Jehovah's fellow, who, continuing in a course of sin and unbelief, can expect to escape the vengeance of eternal fire! If such things were done in the green tree, what shall be done in the dry?
But it is the gracious character of God that is principally exhibited in the atonement of Christ. Compassion, mercy, love, grace, beam with refulgent splendour from the cross, and from the cross only. Wisdom and power, holiness and justice, though here transcendently magnified, are elsewhere displayed to a certain extent: but the atoning sacrifice of Christ
is what alone gives any intimation, even the slightest, of forgiving mercy and redeeming love. If left to creation and providence, our anticipations might well be of a different character, seeing the pains and privations, and sorrows, and death, which everywhere prevail, would seem to announce God's fixed determination to avenge the quarrel of his covenant. But, in the face of the suffering Saviour, we read distinct intimations of mercy and love. Gethsemane and Calvary thus disclose what the fairest scenes in nature can never exhibit. The 'human face divine,' even when marred with grief, and lacerated with thorns, and foul with weeping, and pale with death, reflects more of the divine glory than the sun when shining in his strength. The hour of midnight gloom and darkness and desertion which came upon the holy soul of the Redeemer, was, so to speak, the noon-tide of God's eternal love, the meridian splendour of mercy to perishing men, the reign and triumph of superabounding grace,-'God commendeth his love toward us in that, when we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.' 'Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us and gave his Son to be a propitiation for our sins.' 'Grace reigns through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.'
II. It vindicates the honour, and establishes the principles of the Divine moral Government in general, and of the moral Law in particular.
The homage to his excellence which the Lord of the universe demands of all his rational creatures, of