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his name, you would shew him every kindness and hospitality. Your conduct toward the stranger is now very different. In bim there is no difference, except that he has made use of another's name.

But why should you act differently towards him on that account? The reason is that you promptly and spontaneously obey a certain arrangement of providence, and you impute to the stranger a portion of the character or worthiness and respectability of the person whose name he has used, that is, you treat him better on account of that name.

In such a case you never think that there is an actual transfer and commutation of personal worthiness, nor do you stay to inquire how you come to treat the stranger better for making use of your friend's name. Let the first application of the stranger in his own name and character stand for a sinner's approach to God on the ground of his own righteous-.

God says, “Depart, I know you not." He knocks a second time, and makes use of the worthy name of the Son of God, and begs to be admitted into God's favor for the sake of Jesus Christ. He is then cordially "accepted in the Beloved." He is found in Christ, and is well-received on account of Christ. We perceive no incongruity, but due propriety, in such a transaction in common providence, and we would see no absurdity, but wise benevolence, in such an arrangement in the mediation of Christ, if we were apt to “discern spiritual things.”

On our part this communion of benefits with Christ, takes place by faith, trust, or confidence in him; or, to use the figure above, by using his name. If a sick man be restored to health through his faith and confidence in the science and skill of his physician, he enjoys the blessings of health as if he had had that science and skill himself. If a passenger cross in safety a tempestuous sea through his firm confidence in the knowledge and ability of his Pilot, the result is to him as if he had been at the helm himself. In the same manner, if a sinful man is delivered from his sin

through a firm belief and persuasion that the sufferings of Christ are an awful expression of the evil of sin, and supply an honorable ground for vindicating God's righteousness in pardoning bim, the result is to that sinner, as if he had suffered to vindicate that righteousness himself.

The doctrine of the scriptures concerning substitution appears entirely free from the objections brought against the exhibitions of it in some theological systems. When I consider that Jesus Christ suffered as if he had been a sinner, that nevertheless, his sufferings did not partake of the elements of the literal curse of the law, and that in consequence of them siuners are treated as if they had suffered themselves, the doctrine of substitution appears in bold prominence, and appears to consist in a substitution of sufferings as well as in substitution of persons.

SECTION III.

The Atonement the appointed medium of Salvation

from Sin.

1. The scriptures represent the atonement of Christ as supplying an honorable ground for offering and for dispensing pardon to sioners.

I have defined an atonement to be, any provision, or expedient, that for the purposes of good government answers the same ends as the punishment of the sinner. An atonement is provided that, the ends of government being answered, the governor may be left at liberty to pardon offenders in what way, or on what terms he pleases. An atonement only provides that the governor might be just in pardoning, or that he might pardon, and his justice be unsullied; but not at all that he must pardon or be unjust. A pardon through an atonement is one honorably admitted by justice, but, most assuredly, not one imperiously demanded, as if it were the remission of a commercial debt.

It is in this sense that Jesus Christ is said to have given his life a ransom for all, 1 Tim. ii, 6. The death of Christ is the ransom price (the nurgsv) of our deliverance. The ransom price is a sum of money, or any other equivalent consideration that influences the holder of a captive to set him at liberty. It is in reference to this sense that we are said to be justified through the "redemption" that is in Christ Jesus—that is through the ransom-price, the valuable consideration of his death, which makes God just in justifying. The language is, of course, analogical, and must be so understood and explained. The meaning I believe to be this, that as the ransom price is the ground of the liberation of a captive, so is the atonement of Christ the ground and reason for delivering a sinner from liableness to punishment, and from the thraldom of sinful habits and passions.

2. The atonement of Christ is not only the ground on account of which pardon is proclaimed and offered, but it is the medium through which pardon is dispensed and conferred.

Christ is represented as "the way" to the Father. Redemption is described as being through Christ." God meets the sinner for reconciliation "in Christ;": and the offender draws near to God "in the name of Christ.” The atonement is not the salvation itself, but the medium of salvation; as the ransom-price is not the redemption of the captive, but the medium of his redemption. Therefore, the atonement, as such, does not secure the salvation of any, but is the medium of salvation to all. Just so is providence-it secures health to none,

but is the medium of health to all. The atonement was not designed to deliver at once and summarily offenders, simply as offenders. It never intended to acquit them of their offence irrespectively of their disposition towards the government. In the atonement, God consulted, not alone the sinner's good, but, pre-eminently his own glory; but an indiscriminate pardon dispensed without any regard to the disposition

of the sinner, would be inconsistent with the wisdom of the divine government, and with the public justice which, in this provision, sought the good of the whole commonwealth. To deliver captives, who despise their Deliverer and their deliverance cannot be wise ; and to ransom criminals, only to make them lawless, cannot be good.

The atonement is a medium of redemption, and must be employed as such before redemption will ever be effected. God employs it as the medium of declaring his righteousness, and expressing bis mercy in forgiving sin; and the sinner employs it as the medium of his access to God. The atonement will avail the sinner nothing unless it be used. It is a "remedy," but it must be taken; it is a "way,” but it must be walked in; it is a “satisfaction for sin,” but it must be pleaded at the throne of God; it is "the blood of the Lamb,” but it must be sprinkled, before it will avail for our safety from destruction. Until this be done, "there is no salvation;" but the wrath of God abideth on every sinner. It is the amnesty of a government to an army of rebels, it may be as comprehensive as the whole army, but it will benefit only those who accept of it.

The New Testament never represents the atonement as the procuring cause of salvation, but the medium of dispensing it. Eternal love is the sole procuring cause of salvation through the atonement. Such a statement is supposed by some to derogate from the dignity of the atonement. Accordingly Mr. M'LEAN* argues thus: “To represent Christ's death merely as a medium through which spiritual blessings are conveyed, and not, the meritorious procuring cause of them, is to ascribe no more to it than to the preaching of the gospel, which is also a medium through which salvation is conveyed.”

On the objection of this able and distinguished divine, I submit the following remarks.

* M'Lean's Works, vol. 4, p. 226.

1. Here it is supposed that a meritorious and a procuring cause are the same. For an illustration of the difference between these two causes, take the case of Amyntas pleading for the relief of his brother Æschylus. The Athenians had condemned Æschylus to death, but his brother pleads for his pardon on account of the arm which he had lost in fighting the battle, and defending the honor of his country. In this instance the procuring cause of release was Amyntas's love and goodwill towards his brother, the meritorious cause was the loss of Amyntas's arm at the battle of Salamis. It would not be correct to say that the loss of Amyntas's arm procured his brother's release; for the loss of the arm, as such, procured nothing for him; but when viewed, as sustained in the cause of the government, and now made to bear on the case of Æschylus, it became the meritorious cause of his release.

2. If the atonement be the procuring cause of salvation, what is the procuring cause of the atonement itself? The procuring cause of the atonement must be the procuring cause of every other blessing. There can be no impropriety in saying that sovereign grace is the procuring cause of salvation, and the atonement the procuring medium of it.

3. What Mr. M'LEAN says about the death of Christ being a medium, and the gospel being a medium, is only a play upon words. For instance. In the case of Æschylus, Amyntas was the medium through which the Athenian government granted the pardon; the document authoritatively expressing the pardon was the medium by which the government conveyed it. Thus the love of God is the procuring cause of salvation, the atonement is the meritorious cause; or, if you like, the procuring medium of it, and the gospel is the medium of conveying it. Even in commercial exchanges, money, is not the procuring cause of merchandize, it is only a procuring medium, and so is the atonement in moral government.

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