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security. So did the children of Israel in the wil- . derness, every tribe kept their camps under their own standard. It is also a token of success and victory, Psa.. xx. 6. Christ hath a banner for his saints: and that is love. All their protection is from his love; and they shall have all the protection his love can give them. This safeguards them from hell, death, all their enemies. Whatever presses on them, it must pass through the banner of the love of the Lord Jesus. They have then great spiritual safety, which is another ornament or excellency of their communion with him.

4. Supportment, and consolation. ver. 6. His left hand is under my head, and his right hand doth embrace me. Christ here hath the posture of a most tender friend towards any one in fickness, and sadness. The soul faints with love; spiritual longings after the enjoyment of his presence, and Christ comes in with his embraces. He nourisheth and cherisheth his church, Eph. V. 29. Isa. lxiii. 13• Now the hand under the head, is supportment, fustaining grace, in pressures and difficulties: and the band that dot b embrace, the hand upon the heart, is joy and consolation, in both Christ rejoiceth, as the Bridegroom rejoiceth over the bride. Ifa. Ixii. 5. Now thus to ly in the arms of Christ's love, under a perpetual influence of supportment and refreshment, is certainly to hold communion with him. And hereupon ver. 1. the spouse is moft earnest for the contimance of this fellowship charging all so to demean themselves, that her beloved be not disquieted, or provoked to depart.

In brief this whole book is taken up in the description of the communion that is between the Lord Christ and his faints, and therefore it is very

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needless to take from thence any more particular instances thereof.

I shall only add that of Prov. ix. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 • Wifdom hach builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars. She hath killed her beasts, she hath mingled her wine, she hath also furnished her table. She hath sent forth her maidens, she crieth upon the highest places of the city. Who fo is simple, let him turn in hither, as for him that wanteth understanding the faith to him, come eat of my bread, and drink of the wine that I have mingled.”

The Lord Christ, the eternal wisdom of the Father, and who of God is made unto us wisdom, erects a spiritual-house, wherein he makes provision for the entertainment of those guests whom he fo freely invites. His church is the house which he hath built on a perfect number of pillars, that it might have a stable foundation: his flain beasts, and mingled wine wherewith his table is furnished, are those spiritual fat things of the gospel, which he hath prepared for those that come in upon his invitation: furely to eat of this bread, and drink of this wine which he hath so graciously prepared, is to hold fellowship with him; for in what ways or things, is there nearer communion than in such?

I might farther evince this truth, by a consider ation of all the relations wherein Christ and his faints do ftand, which necessarily require that there be a cominunion between them, if we do fuppose they are faithful in those relations : but this is com, monly treated on, and something will be spoken to it, in one signal instance afterwards.

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CH A P. II.

What it is, wherein we have peculiar fellowship

with the Lord Christ. This is in grace. This proved, John : 14, 16, 17.

2 Cor. xiii. 14. 2 Thef. iii. 17, 18. Grace, of various acceptations. Personal grace in Christ proposed to consideration. Тbe grace of Christ as Mediator intended, Pfal.. xlv. 2. Cant. v. y. Christ how white and ruddy. His fitness to save from the grace of union. His fulness to save. His suitableness to endear. These confiderations improved.

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AVING manifested that the saints hold pe

culiar fellowship with the Lord Jesus, it nextly follows, that we shew wherein it is that they have this peculiar communion with him.

Now this is in GRACE, This is every where afcribed to him by the way of eminency, John i. 14. He dwelt among us, full of grace and truth. Grace in the truth and substance of it. All that went before was but typical and in representation, in the truth and substance, it comes only by Christ. Grace and truth is by Jesus Christ, ver. 17. And of bis fulness we receive grace for grace, ver. 16. that is, we have communion with him in grace; we receive from him all manner of grace whatever, and therein have we fellowship with him.

So likewise in that apostolica Ibenediction, wherein the communication of spiritual blessings from the several persons unto the saints, is so exactly distinguished; it is grace that is ascribed to our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 Cor. xiii. 14. The grace of our Lord

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Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost be with you

all. Yea, Paul is so delighted with this, that he makes it his motto, and the token whereby he would have his epistles known, 2 Thes. iii. 17, 18. The falutation of Paul with mine own hand, S, I write, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Yea he makes these two, grace be with you, and the Lord Jesus be with you, to be equivalent expressions; for whereas he affirmeth the one to be the token in all his epistles, yet sometimes, he uferh the one, only, sometimes the other of these, and sometimes puts them both together, this then is that which we are peculiarly to eye in the Lord Jesus, to receive it from him, even grace, gospel grace, revealed in, or exhibited by the gospel. He is the head Stone in the building of the temple of God, to whom grace, grace, is to be cried, Zech.

Grace is a word of various acceptations. In its most eminent significations it may be referred unto one of these three heads,

1. Grace of personal presence and comeliness. So we say a graceful and comely person, either from himself or his ornaments. This in Christ (upon the matter) is the subject of near one half of the book of Canticles, it is also mentioned, Pfal. xlv. 2. Thou art fairer than the children of men; grace is poured into thy lips. And unto this first head in respect of Christ, do I refer also that acceptation of grace, which in respect of us, I fix in the third place. Those inconceivable gifts and fruits of the Spirit which were bestowed on him, and brought forth in him, concur to his personal excellency, as will afterward appear.

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2. Grace of free favour and acceptance. By this grace we are saved, that is, the free favour and gracious acceptation of God, in Christ. In this sense it is used in that frequent expression, if I have found grace in thy sight, that is, if I be freely and favourably accepted before thee. So he giveth grace, that is, favour to the humble, James iv. 6. Gen. xxxix. 2 1. and xli. 37. Acts vii. 10. 1 Sam. ii. 26. 2 Kings xxv. 27. &c.

3. The fruits of the Spirit, fanctifying and renewing our natures, enabling unto good, and preventing from evil, are so termed. Thus the Lord tells Paul, his grace was sufficient for him, that is, the assistance against temptation which he afforded him, Col. iii. 16. 2 Cor. viii. 6, 7. Heb xii. 28.

These two latter, as relating unto Christ, in re{pect of us who receive them, I call purchased grace, being indeed purchased by him for us; and our communion with him therein, is termed a fellowship in his sufferings, and the power of his resurrection, Phil. iii. 1O.

Let us begin with the first, which I call personal grace, and concerning that do these two things.

1. Shew what it is, and wherein it consisteth, I mean the personal grace of Christ. And,

2. Declare how the saints hold immediate communion with him therein.

To the handling of the first, I fhall only premise this observation. It is Christ as Mediator, of whom we speak, and therefore by the grace of his person, I understand not,

1. The glorious excellencies of his Deity, confidered in itself, abstracting from the office which for us, as God and Man, he undertook.

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