A Body Of Doctrinal Divinity, John Gill
The various parts which each contracting Party take in this covenant, are next to be considered. The Father, the first person in the Trinity, takes the first place, and gives the lead in this covenant. “All things are of God”, that is, of God the Father; they are of him originally, they begin with him; all things in creation; he has made the world, and created all things by his Son; and so all things in the salvation of men, “who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ”; he set on foot the council of peace, and so the covenant of peace, “God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself”; that is, God the Father; he planned the reconciliation of men in council, and proposed it in covenant, and settled it with the other two persons; and he is not only the proposer, but the prescriber and enjoiner of things in the covenant; he both proposed the work to be done, and took upon him the authority, by agreement, to prescribe and enjoin it: hence we read of the injunctions and commands laid on Christ with respect to his discharge of his office, as the mediator of this covenant, (John 10:18, 12:49, 14:31) it was the Father that called Christ from the womb of eternity to be his servant, and directed and enjoined his work and service, as appears from (Isa. 49:1-6) and promised a reward to him on condition of his performing the service, and to bestow benefits on the elect in him, and for his sake. And let us,
1. First, Consider the work he proposed to Christ, which is the great and only condition of the covenant, and which he prescribed and enjoined him to do; which was,
1a. To take the care and charge of the chosen ones; these, as he chose them in him, he put them into his hands, not only as his property, but for their safety; and here they are safe, for none can pluck them out of his hands; hence they are called “the sheep of his hand”, not only because they are guided by his hand as a flock, but because they are under his care and custody; they were not only given him as his portion and inheritance, but to be kept and saved by him; when they were committed to him, he had this charge given to him by his Father, that “of all” that he had “given” him he “should lose nothing”, not anyone of them; they were told into his hands, and the full tale of them was expected to be returned: and which respects the whole of them, as their souls which he has redeemed, and does preserve, so their bodies likewise; for the injunction was that he “should lose nothing”, no part of them, not even their dust in their graves, “but should raise it up again at the last day”, (John 6:39) as he will. God not only made a reserve of them in Christ for himself, but they were preserved in him, and therefore are called the “preserved of Israel”, (Jude 1:1; Isa. 49:6) and that Christ, in a covenant way, by his own consent, was laid under such an obligation to keep and preserve the elect safe to glory, appears from his own account, both from what he says in his intercessory prayer; “those that thou gavest me, I have kept, and none of them is lost”, (John 17:12) and from what he will say at the last day, when they are all brought in; “Behold, I, and the children which God hath given me”, (Heb. 2:13) all kept safe, and presented faultless; the kingdom of priests, the whole number of the chosen vessels of salvation, will be delivered up complete and perfect, agreeable to the charge committed to him, and his own voluntary undertakings.
1b. Whereas these same Persons made his care and charge, would fall in Adam, with the rest of mankind, and that into a state of sin and misery, and under the curse and condemnation of the law, he proposed it to him, and enjoined it as his will, that he should redeem them from all this; and hence agreeing to it, he was sent to do it, and has done it; this work, as proposed and prescribed in the covenant of grace, is expressed by various phrases, in (Isa. 49:5, 6) as by “bringing Jacob again to him”; by Jacob is meant the elect of God, especially among the Jews, the remnant according to the election of grace: and “bringing” them “again”, supposes they were gone aside, apostatized from God, and turned their backs on him, and were gone out of the right way, gone astray, and become lost sheep: and the work of Christ, as enjoined him in covenant, and he undertook, was to bring them unto God, and set them before him, to use Judah’s words, when he offered to be surety for Benjamin, (Gen. 43:9) to bring them nigh to God; which he has done, by his obedience, sufferings, and death, (Eph. 2:13; 1 Peter 3:18) and also this work of Christ is expressed by “raising up the tribes of Jacob”; meaning the same persons sunk into a low estate through the fall, into an horrible pit, into the mire and clay, into a pit wherein is no water: out of this low estate Christ was to raise them, as he did, by the blood of the covenant, and made them kings and priests unto God; and likewise by “restoring the preserved of Israel”, even the same chosen ones, among the people of Israel; who, by the fall, lost their righteousness, and forfeited their happy life in innocence; these Christ was to recover from their fallen sinful estate, and restore them, as he has done, to a better righteousness, and to a life more abundant than what they lost, to an higher state of grace, glory, and happiness: and if this should be thought by Christ to be too “light” and too “low” a thing for him to be the Saviour of the elect among the Jews; it is farther proposed, that he should be “the light of the Gentiles”, and “the salvation” of God “unto the end of the earth”, be the Saviour of all God’s elect, both among Jews and Gentiles; not only to die for his people among the Jews, but to bring again, raise up, restore, and gather together the children of God, scattered abroad throughout the whole world; and be the propitiation, not for the sins of the chosen among the Jews only, but of those in the whole world of the Gentiles; so that this takes in the whole work of redemption and salvation, the work which Christ’s Father gave him to do, and which he undertook, and has finished, (John 17:4) and with respect to the Gentiles, as well as Jews, our Lord says, “Other sheep I have” to take care of, to lay down his life for, besides those among the Jews, “which are not of this fold”, of the Jewish church state, but out of it; the Gentiles, them also I must bring, bring them again, raise up, and restore, and set before his Father; bring them into his church, and among his people, into an open state of grace, and to eternal glory; and this he says he must do, because his Father enjoined it, and he agreed to do it.
1c. In order to this, the Father proposed to the Son to assume human nature in the fulness of time, which was necessary to the work of redeeming the chosen people; as this was advised to in council, it was fixed in the covenant; “A body hast thou prepared me”, (Heb. 10:5) not only in the purposes and decrees of God, in the book of which “all the members of it were written, which, in continuance, were fashioned, when, as yet, there was none of them”, before they were in actual being, (Ps. 139:16) nor only in the prophesies of the Old Testament, in which it was foretold and promised, that the Messiah should become man, be the child born, and born of a virgin, and that the Man, the Branch, should grow up out of his place; but this was provided in covenant, not an human body only, nor an human soul only, but the whole human nature; which, though it had not a real and actual, yet had a covenant subsistence, as it may be called; that is to say, the Father proposing it, and the Son assenting, as he did, by the above words; there was an agreement, a compact between them, that he should take into union with himself, a true body, and a reasonable soul; both which were necessary, to suffer the whole curse of the law; a true body, in which he might get his bread by the sweat of his brow, and suffer pains, sorrows, and death; bear the sins of many in it, and be offered up for them; and a reasonable soul, that he might endure the punishment of loss and sense; of loss, in being deprived for a while of the gracious presence of God, as when on the cross; of sense, in feeling the wrath poured into his soul, which made it exceeding sorrowful, as in the garden. And this nature proposed to be assumed, and was assumed, is of the same kind with that which sinned, and to which death was threatened, as it seems proper it should; the same flesh and blood with the children, and in which he was made like unto his brethren, excepting sin; and to assume such a nature was necessary, that Christ might have somewhat to offer, that would be acceptable to God, and satisfactory to his justice; this was part of the will of God enjoined in covenant, and which Christ agreed to do; that whereas ceremonial sacrifices would be disapproved of by him, as insufficient to take away sin, he would assume the body, or human nature, prepared and provided in covenant for him, and offer it up, that sin might be condemned, and the righteousness of the law be fulfilled; for it is “by this will”, or the doing of it, that “we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all”, (Heb. 10:5-10) and this being the will of the Father, what he proposed and prescribed to be done; hence he is always represented as concerned in this affair: he promised to bring forth his Servant the Branch, the Man the Branch, that should grow out of its place; and he sent his Son, in the fulness of time, made of a woman, and in the likeness of sinful flesh, to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself (Zech. 3:8, 6:12; Rom. 8:3; Gal. 4:4).
1d. Another branch of the work assigned to Christ, in the covenant, by his Father, and to which he agreed, was to obey the law in the room and stead of his people; to which Christ has respect when he says, “thy law is within my heart”, or I am heartily willing and ready to obey and fulfil it; and which designs not only the law of mediation, or the command enjoined Christ as Mediator, with respect to the performance of his several offices as such: so with respect to his prophetic office Christ says, “The Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment what I should say, and what I should speak—whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak” (John 12:49, 50). And with respect to his priestly office, his laying down his life for his people; “I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it up again; this commandment have I received of my Father” (John 10:18, 14:31). And with respect to his Kingly office; “I will declare the decree”; that is, of his Father, the ordinance, statute, law, and rule of governing his people; for this refers not to what follows concerning the generation of Christ, but to what goes before, concerning his Kingly office: but also the moral law, which he agreed to be made under, and was willing to fulfil, and for which he came into the world, and did become the fulfilling end of it, whereby he magnified it, and made it honourable; as it became him to do, as the Surety of his people, and which was necessary to their justification; for “by the obedience of One, many are made righteous” (Rom. 5:19).
1e. Another part of the work proposed to him, and enjoined him by his Father, was to suffer the penalty of the law, death; which must be endured, either by the sinner himself, the transgressor of the law, or by his Surety, (Gen. 2:17) wherefore it became the wise, holy, and righteous Being, “for whom, and by whom, are all things—to make the Captain of salvation”, his Son, whom he appointed to be the Saviour of men, perfect through sufferings, for the satisfaction of law and justice; and therefore he enjoined him to bear them, (Heb. 2:10) hence Christ says, speaking of laying down his life for the sheep, “This commandment have I received of my Father”, (John 10:18) and hence his sufferings are called, “the cup” which his Father had given him; not just then put into his hands, for he spake of it long before, as what he was to drink of; but was what was ordered him in the everlasting covenant, (John 18:11; Matthew 20:22) and hence also they are spoken of by all the prophets from the beginning of the world: and this being the Father’s will in covenant, hence likewise it is that the Father had so great an hand in them, as to bruise him and put him to grief, to awake the sword of justice against him, and smite him; not to spare him, but deliver him up by his determinate counsel, into the hands of wicked men, and to death itself; and the covenant having somewhat of the nature of a testament, or of a man’s last will, there was a necessity of the death of the testator to ratify and confirm it; which was to be done by the blood of Christ, called therefore, the blood of the everlasting covenant (Heb. 9:15-17, 13:20).
1f. When the Father signified in covenant, his dislike of the continuance of legal sacrifices, as insufficient to take away sin; he strongly suggested it was his will that his Son should become a sacrifice for it, and therefore prepared him a body, or human nature, in the covenant, capable of being offered up; and it was by his will expressed therein, that his covenant people are sanctified through the offering up of the body of Christ (Heb. 10:5-10). This is the great condition of the covenant, and on which all the blessings of it depend: “When thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin”, or rather, “When his soul shall make an offering for sin”; that is, when he shall heartily and willingly offer up himself, soul and body, a sacrifice for sin, then the benefits following should be conferred both on Christ, and on his spiritual seed (Isa. 53:10-12). And,
1g. Farther, it was the will of the Father, in the covenant, that Christ should hereby make atonement for the sins of the chosen ones; this was the work which was assigned him in covenant, and is marked out in prophecy for him to do; namely, “To finish the transgression, to make an end of sin, and to make reconciliation for iniquity”, (Dan. 9:24) and as he agreed to do it, for this purpose he became man, and by his bloodshed, sufferings, and death, has made it; which lays a foundation of solid joy in his people, (Heb. 2:17, 9:26, 10:14; Rom. 5:10, 11).
1h. In close connection with the former, his work assigned him in covenant was, to bring in everlasting righteousness, for the justification of the elect. God the Father in covenant, “called him in righteousness”, or “to righteousness”, to work out a righteousness for his people, commensurate to the demands of law and justice; and this call and proposal he answered and agreed to; hence the church of old could say, “Surely in the Lord have I righteousness and strength”; and by virtue of the suretyship righteousness of Christ, and his engagements in covenant, all the Old Testament saints were justified, (Isa. 42:6, 45:24, 25).
1i. Lastly, The work which the Father proposed to, and prescribed to the Son was, “to feed the flock of slaughter”; to which he replied, “I will feed the flock of slaughter”; even all the elect of God, (Zech. 11:4, 7) and this feeding the flock committed to his charge, takes in his whole work as a shepherd; taking care of his sheep, laying down his life for them, gathering the lambs in his arms, carrying them in his bosom, gently leading those with young, protecting them from all harms and enemies, bringing them into his fold here and above, setting them at his right hand, and introducing them into his kingdom and glory. This is the work that was before him; and his reward was with him, next to be observed (Isa. 40:10, 11).
2. Secondly, On condition of Christ’s engaging to do the above work proposed and prescribed to him, the Father promised in the covenant many things; some to him personally, and others to the elect, whom he represented and represented in it.
2a. Some things to himself, respecting his work, assistance in it, &c. a glory on the nature in which he should do it, the honourable offices he should be invested with in it, and the numerous offspring he should have.
2a1. As the work assigned him was to be done in human nature, which needed qualifications for it, strength to do it, help and assistance in it, support under it, preservation from enemies, and encouragement of success: all this was promised him, that as his human nature should be formed by the Holy Ghost without sin, so it should be filled with his gifts and graces; that the Spirit should be put upon him, and rest on him, as a Spirit of wisdom, counsel, might, knowledge, and of the fear of God, whereby he would be qualified to execute his offices of Prophet, Priest, and King, (Isa. 11:1, 2, 42:1, 61:1) and which was bestowed upon him without measure, (Ps. 45:7; John 3:34) and that whereas the human nature, in which this work was to be done, would be attended with weakness, with all the sinless infirmities of human nature, as it was at last crucified through weakness; God promised to strengthen him, and he believed he would be his strength, and, accordingly, he was the Man of his right hand, whom he made strong for himself, (Ps. 89:21; Isa. 49:5; Ps. 80:17) and that, as he would need help and assistance in that nature, it was promised him, and he expected it, asked for it, and had it, (Ps. 22:1, 19; Isa. 50:7, 8, 49:8) and as it would want support, under the mighty load of sin, and sense of wrath, that it might not sink under it, this was promised and granted; so that he failed not, nor was he discouraged or broken, (Isa. 42:1, 4) and as it would have many enemies, who would seek to take its life away before its time; God promised that he would keep and preserve him, and hide him in the shadow of his hand, and in his quiver, and so secure him, as he did from Herod, and the wicked Jews, (Isa. 42:6, 49:2, 6) and since he would be treated with great contempt in that nature, be despised by men, abhorred by the nation of the Jews, and be a servant of rulers; he was told, for his encouragement, that the Lord would choose him, and express delight and pleasure in him as his elect: and though disallowed of men, would be chosen of God, and precious, (Isa. 42:1, 49:7) and accordingly, delight and well pleasedness in him were expressed by his Father, when both obeying and suffering, (Matthew 3:17; John 10:17) yea, success in his work was promised him, that “the pleasure of the Lord should prosper in his hand”; that is, the work of the Lord be succeeded, which it was his will and pleasure to put into his hand. Now all this was promised him in covenant, as an encouragement to engage in this work.
2a2. As he was to do and suffer much in his human nature, so it was promised him, that he should have a very great glory conferred on him in that nature; not only that the glory of his Deity should be manifested and displayed, which was hid, especially from many, during his state of humiliation; for which, when he had done his work, he may be thought to pray, pleading a promise made to him, (John 17:4, 5). But there was a glory to be put on his human nature, which was promised in the everlasting covenant, and which he had with his Father, in promise, before the world was; hence the prophesies of the Old Testament, which are founded on covenant engagements, speak, as of the sufferings of Christ, so of the glory that should follow, and of Christ’s entering through sorrows and sufferings, into his kingdom and glory; and Christ believed and expected that he should be “glorious”, notwithstanding all his meanness in a state of humiliation, (Isa. 49:5; Luke 24:26) particularly it was promised him, that though he should die and be laid in the grave, yet that he should not lie so long as to see corruption, but be raised again the third day, as he was, and so had the glory given him, and which he had faith and hope of, (Ps. 16:9-11; 1 Peter 1:21) as also, that he should ascend to heaven, and receive gifts for men, or in man, in human nature; and accordingly he did ascend above all heavens, to fill all things, and gave the gifts to men he received, and that in a very extraordinary manner; whereby it appeared he was glorified, as was promised him, because the Spirit was not given in such a plentiful manner till Jesus was glorified, exalted at the right hand of God, and made and declared Lord and Christ (Ps. 68:18; Eph. 4:8-10; John 7:39; Acts 2:32, 36). Moreover, it was promised him, that in human nature he should sit at the right hand of God; a glory and honour which none of the angels was ever admitted to; but, in consideration of his obedience, sufferings, and death, he was highly exalted, as it was promised he should, and a name given him above every name; being placed on the right hand of God, angels, authorities, and powers being made subject unto him! (Ps. 110:1; Heb. 1:13; Phil. 2:7-9; 1 Peter 3:22) and now he is seen crowned with glory and honour, and will come a second time in his own glory, and in his Father’s glory, and in the glory of the holy angels, all according to the covenant agreement. In a word, it was promised him in covenant: on condition of making his soul an offering for sin, among other things, that God would “divide him a portion with the great”; give him as large and ample a portion, yea, a larger one, than any of the great men of the earth: that he would make him his firstborn, higher than the kings of the earth: and that he should “divide the spoil with the strong”, or take the prey out of the hands of the mighty, and deliver the lawful captive; which spoil and prey being taken out of the hands of the strong, should be his portion and inheritance; and that because he poured out his soul unto death, was numbered with the transgressors, and bore the sins of many (Isa. 53:12).
2a3. As an encouragement to Christ to engage in the above work proposed to him in covenant, it was promised him, that he should be invested with, and sustain several honourable offices, which he should execute in human nature; as, that he should be the great Prophet of the church; not only “the minister of the circumcision for the truth of God” to the Jews, but be “for a light of the Gentiles”; which is twice promised, where plain traces of this everlasting covenant are to be seen, (Isa. 42:6, 49:6) and he accordingly was expected to be a light to lighten the Gentiles, as well as to be the glory of the people of Israel, (Luke 2:32) and he was so, by the ministry of his apostles, in the Gentile world, and still is, by the preaching of his ministers in it; whereby men are turned from darkness to light, and to show forth the praises of him who has called them out of the one to the other (1 Peter 2:9; Eph. 2:17; Acts 26:18). It was also promised, and swore to by an oath in covenant, that he should be a Priest; an honour which no man takes to himself, but he that is called to it, as was Aaron; even Christ glorified not himself, to be called an High Priest; but his Father, who invested him with this office, by an oath, to show the immutability of it; and that he should continue in it, and be a priest on his throne (Ps. 110:4; Heb. 5:4, 5, 7:21; Zech. 6:13). Likewise, that he should be King of Zion, of saints, over his church and people, and have a kingdom very large, from sea to sea, from the river to the ends of the earth; of which government, and the increase of it, there should be no end; a dispensatory kingdom, besides that of nature and providence, which he had a right to, as a divine Person; but this is a kingdom disposed of to him in covenant and by promise; “I appoint unto you a kingdom”, says Christ, “as my Father hath appointed me”, διεθετο, has disposed of or appointed in covenant to me (Luke 22:29). Once more, God has appointed him in covenant to be the judge of quick and dead; and has appointed a day in which he will judge the world in righteousness, by that Man whom he has ordained; and accordingly, he has committed all judgment to him, that all men should honour him as they honour the Father, (Acts 10:42; 17:31; John 5:22, 23).
2a4. In consequence of fulfilling the condition of the covenant, engaging to do, and doing the above work proposed in it; it was promised to Christ, that he should “see his seed, and prolong his days”, (Isa. 53:10) that is, that he should have a spiritual offspring, a seed that should serve him, and be accounted to him for a generation; that he should be an everlasting Father to them, and they be his everlasting children; that as the first Adam was the common parent, and federal head of all his posterity, who sinning, conveyed sin and death to them; so the second Adam becomes the Father and federal Head of a spiritual offspring, and conveys grace, righteousness, and life unto them: it was promised him, that this seed of his should be numerous, and continue long; yea, that these children should endure for ever, and his throne be as the days of heaven; and that these should be his portion, and his inheritance; not only the elect among the Jews, but those among the Gentiles also; and therefore he was bid to ask of his Father in covenant, and he would “give” him “the heathen for his inheritance”, and the uttermost parts of the earth for his possession; which accordingly he asked, and has, and is well pleased with his portion, and says, the lines are fallen to him in pleasant places, and he has a goodly heritage, (Isa. 9:6; Ps. 22:30, 89:29, 36, 2:8, 16:6) yea, it was promised him, that all persons and things should be put into his hands, to subserve his mediatorial interest, and the good of his spiritual seed, his covenant people; even all the wicked of the earth, whom he disposes of as he pleases, and rules with a rod of iron: he is given to be an Head over all things to the church; for its preservation and security; and has power over all flesh, that he may give eternal life to as many as the Father hath given him; and accordingly all things are put into his hand, and all creatures are at his dispose; all power in heaven and in earth is given unto him, so that he can order and appoint whatsoever he pleases for the good of his people (Ps. 2:9; Eph. 1:22; John 17:2, 3:35; Matthew 28:18).
2b. There are other things which God the Father promised in covenant, respecting the elect, the persons for whom Christ was a covenantee, and whom he represented in the covenant, and for whose sake he was to do all the work proposed to him, and which he undertook. And,
2b1. It was promised, that upon Christ’s engaging in, and performing the work of redemption, they should be delivered out of that state of misery sin brought them into, even out of the pit wherein is no water, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, (Zech. 9:11) that they should be redeemed from all their iniquities, original and actual, which should be cast behind God’s back, and into the depths of the sea, never to be seen and remembered more to their condemnation, (Ps. 130:8) that they should be ransomed from the hand of Satan, stronger than they, and the prey be taken from the mighty, and the lawful captive delivered, (Jer. 31:11; Isa. 49:24, 25) that they should be freed from the law, its curse and condemnation, Christ being made a curse for them, and sin condemned in his flesh, (Rom. 8:1, 3, 33; Gal. 3:13) and that they should be secured from hell, wrath, ruin, and everlasting destruction their sins deserved (Job 33:24).
2b2. That upon the faithful discharge of his office, as a Servant, particularly in bearing the sins of his people, they should be openly justified and acquitted; that his righteousness he would bring in, should be made known unto them, and received by faith; and so they should be manifestatively, and in their own consciences, justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God (Isa. 53:11; 1 Cor. 6:11; Ezek. 36:25).
2b3. That all their iniquities should be forgiven them, for Christ’s sake, and their sins and transgressions be remembered no more. This is a special and particular article in the covenant, to which all the prophets bear witness (Jer. 31:34; Acts 10:43).
2b4. That they should be openly adopted, and declared the children of God, and be dealt with as such; that God should be their God, their Father, their Portion, and Inheritance; and they should be his people, his children, and heirs of him, and be treated as such by him; as they would be when chastised for their sins, the rod being provided for them in covenant, as well as their inheritance (Jer. 32:38; 2 Cor. 6:18; Ps. 89:30, 34; Heb. 12:7).
2b5. That they should be regenerated, their hearts spiritually circumcised to love the Lord, and his fear put into them, and be made willing in the day of his power upon them, to be saved by him, and to serve him, (Deut. 30:6; Jer. 32:39; Ps. 110:3) that they should be made new creatures, have new hearts and new spirits put within them, in which are new principles of light, life, and love, grace and holiness, joy, peace, and comfort; that the stony heart should he taken out of them, the hardness and impenitence of it removed, and an heart of flesh given them, soft, penitent, and contrite; or, in other words, that true, spiritual, evangelical repentance for sin should be granted to them (Ezek. 36:26).
2b6. That they should have knowledge of God, as their covenant God and Father; even the least, as well as the greatest, be all taught of God, as his children, and so believe in Christ; for those that hear and learn of the Father, come to Christ; that is, believe in him (Jer. 31:34; Isa. 54:13; John 6:45). So that repentance and faith are not terms and conditions of the covenant, but are free grace gifts granted, and blessings of grace promised in the covenant, and are as sure to the covenant people, as any other blessings whatever, (Acts 11:18, 5:31; Eph. 2:8).
2b7. It is another promise in this covenant, that the law of God should be put into their inward parts, and written on their hearts; that they should have a spiritual knowledge of it, and a cordial respect unto it, a real delight in it, and serve it with their minds and spirits, and yield a constant, ready, and cheerful obedience to it, (Jer. 31:33; Rom. 7:22, 25) as well as by the epistles of Christ, and have the law of faith, or doctrine of the gospel, take place in their hearts, and dwell richly in them, and they yield a professed subjection to it.
2b8. It is further promised by the Lord, in this covenant, that whereas they are weak and strengthless, and unable to do any thing spiritually good of themselves, that he will put his Spirit within them, who should work in them both to will and to do; and strengthen them with strength in the inward man, and enable them to walk in his statutes, and to keep his judgments, and do them, (Ezek. 36:27) so that likewise new spiritual and evangelical obedience, both to law and gospel, is no term and condition of the covenant, but a blessing secured in it, which absolutely provides with grace and strength to perform it.
2b9. Another article in this covenant, respecting the chosen and covenant people, is, that they shall persevere in grace, in faith, and holiness, to the end; this is absolutely promised in it, and the faithfulness of God is engaged to perform it; “I will put my fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from me” (Jer. 31:40; 1 Thess. 5:23, 24).
2b10. Glory, as well as grace, is promised in this covenant; and to whom God gives the one, he gives the other; eternal life was promised before the world began; and the promise of it was made unto Christ in the everlasting covenant, and put into his hands for his people; and it is represented as if it was the only promise in it, being the grand, principal, and comprehensive one; “This is the promise that he has promised us, even eternal life”, (Titus 1:2; 2 Tim. 1:1; 1 John 2:25) hence our Lord, in an authoritative way, as it were, demands the glorification of ALL the Father has given him, and he undertook for in covenant, (John 17:24).
John Gill (1697-1771) was a Strict and Particular Baptist preacher and theologian. He was appointed the Pastor of Goat Yard Chapel, Horsleydown, Southwark, serving this position for fifty-one years. He was the first Baptist to write an exhaustive systematic theology, setting forth High-Calvinistic views and a clear Baptist polity which became the backbone for the churches subscribing to them. John Hazelton wrote of him:
”[Augustus] Toplady held in high regard Dr. John Gill (1697-1771), and applied to him and to his controversial writings what was said of the first Duke of Marlborough—that he never besieged a town that he did not take, nor fought a battle that he did not win. Gill's book on the Canticles is a beautiful and experimental exposition of Solomon's Song; his "Cause of God and Truth" is most admirable and suggestive; and his "Body of Divinity" one of the best of its kind. His commentary upon the Old and New Testament is a wonderful monument of sanctified learning, though it has been so used as to rob many a ministry of living power. It is the fashion now to sneer at Gill, and this unworthy attitude is adopted mostly by those who have forsaken the truths he so powerfully defended, and who are destitute of a tithe of the massive scholarship of one of the noblest ministers of the Particular and Strict Baptist denomination. The late Dr. Doudney rendered inestimable service by his republication, in 1852, of Gill's Commentary, printed at Bonmahon, Waterford, Ireland, by Irish boys. Gill was born at Kettering, and passed away at his residence at Camberwell, his last words being: "O, my Father! my Father!" For fifty-one years, to the time of his death, he was pastor of the Baptist Church, Fair Street, Horselydown, and was buried in Bunhill Fields. His Hebrew learning was equal to that of any scholar of his day, and his Rabbinical knowledge has never been equalled outside Judaism. His "Dissertation Concerning the Eternal Sonship of Christ" is most valuable, and this foundation truth is shown by him to have been a part of the faith of all Trinitarians for about 1,700 years from the birth of our Lord. In His Divine nature our blessed Lord was the co-equal and co-eternal Son of God, and as such He became the Word of God. The Scriptures nowhere intimate that Christ is the Son of God by office, or that His Sonship is founded on His human nature. This is not a strife about words, but is for our life, our peace, our hope. Dr. Gill's pastoral labours were much blest; to the utmost fidelity he united real tenderness, and at the Lord's Supper he was always at his best.
"He set before their eyes their dying Lord—
How soft, how sweet, how solemn every word!
How were their hearts affected, and his own!
And how his sparkling eyes with glory shone!"