Page images


ings, would reach and extend to every faculty of his soul, and to every member of his body.

Its being washed with water, was expressive of the inconceivable and immaculate purity of Christ's body and soul, which he offered for sin. It follows in the words of my text, "And the sons of Aaron, the priest, shall put fire upon the altar, and lay the wood in order upon the fire: and the priests, Aaron's sons, shall lay the parts, the head and the fat in order, upon the wood that is on fire; but his inwards and his legs shall he wash in water: and the priest shall burn all on the altar, to be a burnt sacrifice, an offering made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the Lord."

[ocr errors]

The altar according to our Lord, Matt. xxiii. 19. sanctified the offering. His own essential Godhead, was the altar which sanctified the oblation of his human nature. The fire on the altar was expressive of the wrath of the Father, with which Christ was parched through and through, when it pleased the Lord to bruise him, and put his soul to grief. The laying the wood in order upon the fire, and then laying the parts of the sacrifice, the head, and the fat thereon, was figurative of Christ, as laid on the cross. The inwards and legs washed in water, was expressive of the purity of Christ's heart, and the perfection of his obedience, which was without spot.

The fire consuming what was laid upon the altar, shewed how Christ would bear the curse and wrath of his Father, due to the sins of his people. The priest burning all upon the altar, shewed that Christ would be made a curse for us, to redeem us from the curse of the law. This being a burnt sacrifice, an offering made by fire, shewed how completely Christ would finish the transgression, make an end of sin, make reconciliation for iniquity, and bring in everlasting righteousness. As what the fire consumed was reduced to dust and powder, and no longer was to be seen under the same form as it was before; so Christ, our burnt sacrifice, hath, by giving himself for our sins, and suffering the just for the unjust, washed us from our sins in his own blood. Its being of a sweet savour unto the Lord, shewed how highly acceptable and infinitely well pleasing the sacrifice of Christ would be to Jehovah the Father. The meat-offering which accompanied the daily burnt-offering, shewed that it would be Christ's meat and drink to do the will of him that sent him. The drink-offering shewed, that the love of Christ is the fountain and foundation of all his mediatory acts. So says the apostle, "Christ also hath loved us, and given himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savour." I come,

Thirdly, To shew, that the sacrifice of the burnt-offering was a sweet savour unto the Lord. The Lord himself expressed it to be so, on the first sacrifice which was offered unto him, after the deluge, and which was a burnt-offering. Thus it is written, Gen. viii. 20, 21. “And Noah builded an altar unto the Lord, and took of every clean beast, and every clean fowl, and offered burnt-offerings on the altar; and the Lord smelled a sweet savour;" or as it is in the margin, 'a savour of rest.'

As it was a memorial of the sacrifice of Christ, which would remove sin, and abolish it out of the sight of law and justice, obtain peace, and satisfy all the demands of law and justice, it yielded content to the divine mind, as it brought to remembrance Christ's future oblation, on which Jehovah would rest with eternal compla cency: so the burnt-offerings under the law, were of a sweet savour unto the Lord, as they were types and memorials of the soul travail and sacrifice of his co-equal and co-eternal Son, which he would in our nature, offer in the fulness of time.

On Christ, the antitype of the burnt-offering, and all the sacrifices under the law, all the iniquities of his church and people were to meet. The Father had covenanted to lay them all on him: he was to bear them in his own body on the

tree, and to be made sin for them, that they might be made the righteousness of God in him. He was to sustain the full curse and punishment due to the sins of all his people, as their surety; and thus to redeem them from the curse of the law, by being made a curse for them, He, by the sacrifice of his whole person, God-man, offered up in the flames of everlasting love and willing obedience to the will of his divine Father, was to purge away the sins of his people, make an effectual atonement, with the savour, perfume, and fragrancy, of which all heaven was to be filled, and the whole church of God cleansed, redeemed, justified, pardoned, and sanctified.

The dignity of Christ's person, stamps worth and efficacy on all he hath done and suf fered. The worth of his sacrifice is inestimable; its virtue and efficacy is infinite. His blood hath God-like virtue; it cleanseth from all sin; it heals every wound brought into the mind; is a complete antidote for the whole of its disease; there is eternal redemption obtained by it; it puts eternal purity on the soul sprinkled with it, and it will continue it to all eternity.

On all these accounts, the instituted sacrifices, the burnt-offerings, and all others, as mẹmorials and emblems of the one perfect and allsufficient sacrifice of Christ Jesus, could not fail of being acceptable unto God. They were to him as such a sweet perfume: they yielded an odour and fragrancy to his mind, as bringing

to remembrance that offering of Immanuel's, which would perfect for ever; by which reconci liation would be effected, pardon obtained, peace made, sin removed, satan and all his principalities conquered, death abolished, hell vanquished, heaven opened, and all the blessings of everlasting life bestowed by the Father, through the medium and channel of his Son's most precious blood-shedding. All which were shadowed out, and set forth to the church of God, under the levitical dispensation, by the sacrifices, sprinklings of blood, costly perfumes, and odoriferous sweets, made use of in the Lord's worship.

As Christ's death is our burnt-offering, which has been accepted by the Father, and which is set forth by him in the everlasting gospel, as a propitiation, so any poor sinner made willing by the Holy Ghost, may come before the Lord, and take the benefit of it. And the subject before us, plainly shews how a poor convinced sinner may do this: it is the most important question which can be asked, 'How shall I know myself, that I am interested in the one everlastingly efficacious sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ?' In answer to which, I would say, view what the Lord commanded in this chapter; if a person had sinned, he was to bring his sacrifice to the priest; the sinner was to lay his hand upon the head of the sacrifice, and the sacrifice was to be

« PreviousContinue »