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ed by several steps. Those four great events which have been mentioned, were several steps towards the accomplishment of this grand event.


When Christ came with the preaching of the apostles, to set up his kingdom in the world, which dispensation ended with the destruction of Jerusalem, then it was accomplished in a glorious degree; when the Heathen empire was destroyed in Constantine's time, it was fulfilled in a further degree; when Antichrist shall be destroyed, it will be accomplished in a yet higher degree: But when the end of the world is come, then will it be accomplished in its most perfect degree of all ; then it will be finally and completely accomplished. And be cause these four great events are but images one of another, and the three former but types of the last, and since they are all only several steps of the accomplishment of the same thing; hence we find them all from time to time prophesied of under one, as they are in the prophecies of Daniel, and `as they are in the 24th chapter of Matthew, where some things seem more applicable to one of them, and others to another.

4. I would observe, that, as there are several steps of the accomplishment of the kingdom of Christ, so in each one of them the event is accomplished in a further degree than in the foregoing. That in the time of Constantine was a greater and further accomplishment of the kingdom of Christ, than that which ended in the destruction of Jerusalem; that which shall be at the fall of Antichrist, will be a further accomplishment of the same thing, than that which took place in the time of Constantine; and so on with regard to each: So that the kingdom of Christ is gradually prevailing and growing by these several great steps of its fulfilment, from the time of Christ's resurrection, to the end of the world.

5. And lastly, it may be observed, that the great providen» ces of God between these four great events, are to make way for the kingdom and glory of Christ in the great event following. Those dispensations of providence which were towards the church of God and the world, before the destruction of the heathen empire in the time of Constantine, seem all to have been to make way for the glory of Christ, and the happiness

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of the church in that event. And so the great providences of God which are after that, till the destruction of Antichrist, and the beginning of the glorious times of the church which follow, seem all to be to prepare the way for the greater glory of Christ and his church in that event; and the providences of God which shall be after that to the end of the world, seem to be for the greater manifestation of Christ's glory at the end of the world, and in the consummation of all things.

Thus I thought it needful to observe those things in general concerning this last period of the series of God's providence, before I take notice of the particular providences by which the work of redemption is carried on through this period, in their order: And before I do that, I will also briefly answer to an INQUIRY, viz. Why the setting up of Christ's kingdom after his humiliation, should be so gradual, by so many steps that are so long in accomplishing, since God could easily have finished it at once ?

Though it would be présumption in us to pretend to declare all the ends of God in this, yet doubtless much of the wisdom of God may be seen in it by us; and particularly in these two things.

1. In this way the glory of God's wisdom, in the manner of doing this, is more visible to the observation of creatures. If it had been done at once, in an instant, or in a very short time, there would not have been such opportunities for creaturès to perceive and observe the particular steps of divine wisdom, as when the work is gradually accomplished, and one effect of his wisdom is held forth to observation after another. It is wisely determined of God, to accomplish his great design by a wonderful and long series of events, that the glory of his wisdom may be displayed in the whole series, and that the glory of his perfections may be seen, appearing, as it were, by parts, and in particular successive manifestations: For if all that glory which appears in all these events had been manifested at once, it would have been too much for us and more than we at once could take notice of; it would have dazzled our eyes, and overpowered our sight.


2. Satan is more gloriously triumphed over......God could easily, by an act of almighty power, at once have crushed Satan. But by giving him time to use his utmost subtilty to hinder the success of what Christ had done and suffered, he is not defeated merely by surprise, but has large opportunity to ply his utmost power and subtilty again and again, to strengthen his own interest all that he can by the work of many ages. Thus God destroys and confounds him, and sets up Christ's kingdom time after time, in spite of all his subtle machinations and great works, and by every step advances it still higher and higher, till at length it is fully set up, and Satan perfectly and eternally vanquished in the end of all things.




I Now proceed to take notice of the particular events, whereby, from the end of Christ's humiliation to the end of the world, the success of Christ's purchase has been or shall be accomplished.



1. I would take notice of those things whereby Christ was an immediate capacity for accomplishing the end of

put his purchase.

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2. I would show how he obtained or accomplished that suc tess.

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I WOULD take notice, first, of those things by which Christ was put into a capacity for accomplishing the end of his purchase. And they are two things, viz. his resurrection, and his ascension. As we observed before, the incarnation of Christ was necessary in order to Christ's being in a near ca pacity for the purchase of redemption; so the resurrection and ascension of Christ were requisite, in order to his accomplishing the success of his purchase.


I. His resurrection. It was necessary, in order to Christ's obtaining the end and effect of his purchase of redemption, that he should rise from the dead. For God the Father had VOL. II. 2 G

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committed the whole affair of redemption, not only the pur-
chasing of it but the bestowing of the blessings purchased, to
his Son, that he should not only purchase it as priest, but aç-
tually bring it about as king; and that he should do this as
Godman. For God the Father would have nothing to do with
fallen man in a way of mercy, but by a mediator.
But in or
der that Christ might carry on the work of redemption, and
accomplish the success of his own purchase as Godman, it was
necessary that he should be alive, and so that he should rise
from the dead. Therefore Christ, after he had finished this
purchase by death, and by continuing for a time under the
power of death, rises from the dead, to fulfil the end of his
purchase, and himself to bring about that for which he died :
For this matter God the Father had committed unto him, that
he might, as Lord of all, manage all to his own purposes:
Rom. xiv. 9. "For to this end Christ both died and rose, and
revived, that he might be Lord both of the dead and the live


Indeed Christ's resurrection and so his ascension, was part of the success of what Christ did and suffered in his humiliation. For though Christ did not properly purchase redemption for himself, yet he purchased eternal life and glory for himself, by what he did and suffered; and this eternal life and glory was given him as a reward of what he did and suffered: Phil. ii. 8, 9. "He humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him.” And it may be looked upon as part of the success of Christ's purchase, if it be considered, that Christ did not rise as a private person, but as the head of the elect church; so that they did, as it were, all rise with him. Christ was justified in his resurrection, i. e. God acquitted and discharged him hereby, as having done and suffered enough for the sins of all the elect: Rom. iv. 25. « Who was delivered for our offences, and raised again for our justification.' And God put him in possession of eternal life, as the head of the church, as a sure earnest that they should follow. For when Christ rose from the dead, that was the beginning of eternal life in him. His life before his death was a mortal

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life, a temporal life; but his life after his resurrection was an
eternal life: 9. «Knowing that Christ being raised
from the dead, dieth no more: Death hath no more dominion
over him." Rev. i. 18. "I am he that liveth and was dead
and behold I am alive forevermore, Amen.".......But he was
put in possession of this eternal life, as the head of the body;
and took possession of it, not only to enjoy himself, but to be-
stow on all who believe in him: So that the whole church, as
it' were, rises in him.
And now he who lately suffered so
much, after this is to suffer no more for ever, but to enter into
eternal glory. God the Father neither expects nor desires
any more suffering.




This resurrection of Christ is the most joyful event that ever came to pass; because hereby Christ rested from the great and difficult work of purchasing redemption, and received God's testimony, that it was finished. The death of Christ was the greatest and most wonderful event that ever came to pass; but that has a great deal in it that is sorrowful. But by the resurrection of Christ, that sorrow is turned into joy. The head of the whole church, in that great event enters on the possession of eternal life; and the whole church is, as it



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were, « begotten again to a lively hope," 1 Pet. i. 3.

ing had continued for a night, but now joy cometh

Weepin the This is the

morning, the most joyful morning that ever was.

day of the reigning of the head of the church, and all the

church reigns with him. This is spoken of as a day which

was worthy to be commemorated with the greatest joy of

all days: Psal. cxviii. 24. « This is the day which the Lord

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hath made, we will rejoice and be glad in it." And therefore

this above all other days, is appointed for the day of the

church's spiritual rejoicing to the end of the world, to be weekly sanctified, as their day of holy rest and joy, that the church therein may rest and rejoice with her head. And as the 3d chapter of Genesis is the most sorrowful chapter in the Bible; so those chapters in the evangelists, that give an account of the resurrection of Christ, may be looked upon as the most joyful chapters in all the Bible: For those chapters give an account of the finishing of the purchase of redemption, and the begin

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