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natural life: He fhall live fpiritually and eternally. 2. We have the spring from whence the belie ver derives this fupernatural life of his, in its beginning, progrefs, and continuation. It is not from himself, he is but a branch, not a rout; it is not immediately from God, as Adam's, but from the Mediator, Jefus Christ. The juftice and holiness of God refused an intermediate union with the finful creature, yet there could be no life but as proceeding from God, the prime Fountain of all, and there could be no communication of this. life without union with him; wherefore it pleafed God to unite the human nature to the divine in the person of his Son, and fo to make him the Mediator, the mean of the finner's union and communion with the Father; that he deriving life from his Father, they might again derive it from him. This is the import of the former part of the verse, in which Chrift fhews how he comes to be living bread. 1. He is fitted for giving life, feeing he lives by the Father, deriving life from the Fountain of life. 2. There is a divine appointment of him by the Father, by which he was ordained and fet apart to be life-giving bread to his people.

3. We have the way how this life is derived from Chrift to the foul, and this is by eating of him, that is, by faith. It cannot be understood of a corporeal eating, for this eating would not give life: John, vi. 63. "It is the Spirit that quickeneth, the flesh profiteth nothing. Our Lord himfelf determines it to be believing, ver. 35. "He that cometh to me fhall never hunger, and he that believeth on me fhall never thirst." The word here ufed properly fignifies a keen appetite, being the fame as in Matth. xxiv. 38. and may denote unto us that greedy appetite which the believer has after Chrift, his foul-food, and that there is no hazard of excess here, either in the appetite which obKk 2

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tains, or in the continuance at this bleffed work; we may eat all the day long, and alfo in the night, and welcome. Yea, it is remarkable that it is not faid, He that hath eaten, that has got a taste of Chrift, and is satisfied; but he that eateth, denoting a continuing action, fuch as he that breathes, lives. There must be a conftant improvement of Christ as the Fountain of life, a living by believing: Gal. ii. 20. "And the life which I now live in the flesh, I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me."

4. We have the peculiar intereft of the believer in this life: "Even he fhall live by me." All others are, and will be dead while they live; he, and only he, thall live; for there is no life but from Christ, and none from him but by faith.From the words I take this

DOCTRINE, That the believer lives by Chrift, deriving his life from him by faith.-For illuftrating this doctrine, I fhall,

I. SHEW what is that life which the believer lives by Chrift, and derives from him.

II. How the believer derives this life from Christ by faith. And then,

III. Conclude with fome improvement-We

are,

I. To fhew what is that life which the believer lives by Chrift, and derives from him.-As to this I obferve,

1. That the believer derives from Chrift a life of grace, and lives by him, in oppofition to that death in fin under which all unbelievers are: Eph. ii. 1. “You hath he quickened, who were dead in trefpaffes and fins." The believer has infufed into him an inward vital principle of action;

formerly

formerly the whole powers of his foul were buried in the grave of fin, devoid of all life and sense in fpiritual things. Now the dead are raised, the dry bones have come together, and stand upon their feet. The dead foul could never have infufed life into itself, but would have eternally rotted in the grave of fin, if the Spirit of Chrift had not entered into it, and Chrift become the life of the foul: Pfal. xvi. 11. "Thou wilt fhew me the path of life." As the life of the body lies in the union of the foul with the body, fo the life of the foul lies in its union with God through Chrift. And as it was by eating, Gen. iii. 6. that mankind were feparated from God, and laid in the duft of death, fo it is by eating that the foul comes to be re-united to God, and to live again in Chrift :. John, vi. 53. 56. "Then Jefus faid unto them, . Verily, verily, I fay unto you, except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him." -The believer derives from Chrift,

2. A life of favour with God: Pfal. xxx. 5. "In his favour is life." We are naturally dead in law, under a fentence of condemnation, the broken law has doomed us to eternal death: Gal. iii. 10. "Curfed is every one that continueth not in all things written in the book of the law to do them." But the fentence against the believer is reverfed, he is no more a condemned man, but is juftified: Rom. viii. 1. « There is therefore now no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus." Now he is a free man; who can lay any thing to his charge?" It is God that juftifieth, who is he that condemneth?" Can juftice fay any thing? it is fatisfied. Can the law? it has got all its demands upon them in Christ: Gal. iii. 13. "Chrift hath redeemed us from the ourfe of the law, having

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ving been made a curfe for us." What is become of thofe long accounts of their debts, subscribed with their own hands? Chrift has blotted them out with his blood, put them out of the way, left the criminal fhould fear that they yet may be read. The nails are driven through the writing, fo that it is. nailed to the crofs, and hence will never appear more against them, Col. ii. 14. What has become of the face-covering, which was on the condemned man? Chrift has deftroyed in this mountain the face of the covering caft over all people, and the vail that is fpread over all nations, Ifa. xxv. 7. What is become of death which stood before him, ready to devour him? Ver. 8. « Chrift has fwallowed up death in victory." Glory, then, be to the Lamb, by whom we live. Ver. 9. « Lo, this is our God: We have waited for him, and he will fave us This is the Lord; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his falvation."

The believer derives from Chrift,

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3. The new life of gofpel-obedience and true holinefs: Rom. vi. 4. 5. "Therefore we are buried with him by baptifm into death: That likeas Chrift was raifed up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even fo we alfo fhould walk in newness of life. For if we had been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be alfo in the likeness of his refurrection." The believer is not now the man he once was, he is not only come out of the grave of his natural ftate, but he has caft off his grave-clothes: Col. iii. 8. "But now ye alfo put off all these, anger, wrath, malice, blafphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth." Thefe reigning lufts are laid afide, for the Lord hath faid, "Loofe him, and let him go." He has put on Christ, personates him, as the beggar in borrowed robes represents a king on the ftage. There is none refembles Chrift in his life

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among men, fo near as the believer does; for he labours to walk, even as he alfo walked. Now his obedience is univerfal. He has refpect unto all God's commandments, Pfal. cxix. 9. His heart is enlarged in breadth and length to the law of Chrift. He loves those ways which he formerly hated, and hates those which he formerly loved. His obedience is a cluster of vital acts in the foul, of all which Chrift is the principle: Gal. ii. 20. "I am crucified," faith he, "with Chrift; nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Chrift liveth in me : and the life which I now live in the flefh, I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me." As Chrift is the principle, fo he is alfo the end of the believer's life: Phil. i. 21. "For some to live," fays he, "is Chrift, and to die, is gain." O! whence comes this new life! fure it could never be ftruck out of vows, refolutions, and Christlefs endeavours, nor hammered out of the united force of the whole powers of the foul, called forth together as in a folemn day. But they have been planted together with Chrift, Rom. vi. 5. (quoted above). Therefore they rife up with him, in the likeness of his refurrection. An eternal barrennefs had shut up their womb; but being married to Chrift, who is rifen from the dead, they now bring forth fruit unto God, Rom. vii. 4.---The believer derives from Christ,

4. A life of activity in grace, as fpringing water is accounted living water : Pfal. lxxx. 18. "So will we not go back from thee: quicken us, and we will call upon thy name." Sometimes the believer is at a low ebb with his graces. Faith, the conduit-pipe, by which life comes into the foul, is ftopped, and then all the flowers in his garden, the believer's graces, begin to hang down their heads, and wither. The weeds of corrup

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