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and of the equity of their being made partakers of the benefits of
Lis mediation, but that this will occur unto us again more fully,
verse 14.

And by all this doth the apostle discover unto the Hebrews the
unreasonableness of their offence at the afflicted condition and suf-
ferings of the Messiah. He had minded them of the work that he
had to do ; Avhich was, to save his elect by a spiritual and eternal
salvalion: he had also intimated what was tlieir condition by nature;
wherein they were unclean, unsanctified, separate from God : and
withal had made known what the justice of God, as the supreme
governor and judge of all, required -that sinners might be saved. He
now minds them of the union that was between him and them,
whereby he became fit to suffer for them, as that they might enjoy
the blessed effects thereof in deliverance and salvation.

Thirdly, The apostle lays down an inference from his preceding
assertion, in these words, " For which cause he is not ashamed to
call them brethren." In which words we have, — 1. The respect of
that which is here affirmed unto the assertion foregoing: " For which
cause." 2. The thing itself affirmed ; which is, that the Lord Christ
calls the sons to be brought unto glory his " brethren." 3. The
manner of his so doing: "He is not ashamed to call them so." And
herein also the apostle, according to his wonted way of proceeding,
which we have often observed, makes a transition towards somewhat
else which he had in design, namely, the prophetical office of Christ,
as we shall see afterwards.

*' For which cause," — that is, because they are of one, partakers
of one common nature, — " he calls them brethren." This gives a
rightful foundation unto that appellation. Hereon is built that re-
lation which is between him and them. It is true, there is more
required to perfect the relation of brotherhood between him and
them than merely their being of one; but it is so far established
from hence that he was meet to suffer for them, to sanctify and save
them. And without this there could have been no such relation.
Now, his calling of them "brethren" doth both declare that they
are so, and also that he owns them and avouches them as such. But
whereas it may be said, that although they are thus of one in respect


of their common ii<ature, yet upon sundry other accounts he is so
glorious, and they are so vile and miserable, that he might justly dis-
avow this cognation, and reject them as strangers, the apostle tells
us it is otherwise, and that, passing by all other distances between
them, and setting aside the consideration of their unvvortliiness, for
which he might justly disavow them, and remembering wherefore
he was of one with them, "he is not ashamed to call them brethren."
There may be a (liiueii in the words, and the contrary asserted to that
which is denied: "He is not ashamed;" that is, willingly, cheer-
fully, and readily he doth it. But I rather look upon it as an ex-
pression of condescension and love. And herein doth the apostle
show the use of what he taught before, that they were of one,
namely, that thereby they became brethren, he meet to suffer for
them, and they meet to be saved by him. What in all this the
apostle confirms by the ensuing testimonies, we shall see in the ex-
plication of them; in the meantime we may learn for our own in-
struction, —

IV. That notwithstanding the union of nature which is between
the Son of God incarnate, the sanctifier, and the children that are
to be sanctified, there is in respect of their persons an inconceivable
distance between them ; so that it is a marvellous condescension in
him to call them brethren.

He is not ashamed to call them so, though, considering what him-
self is and what they are, it should seem that he might justly be so.
The same expression, for the like reasons, is used concerning God's
owning his people in covenant, chap. xi. 16, " Wherefore God is not
ashamed to be called their God." And this distance between Christ
and us, which makes his condescension so marvellous, relates unto
a fourfold head :■ —

1. The itrtmunity of the nature wherein he was of one with
us in his person from all sin. He was made like unto us in all
things, sin excepted. The nature of man in every other individual
person is defiled with and debased by sin. We are every one " gone
astray, and are become all together filthy" or abominable. This sets
us at no small distance from him. Human nature defiled with sin
is farther distanced from the same nature as pure and holy, in worth
and excellency, than the meanest worm is from the most glorious
angel. Nothing but sin casts the creature out of its own place, and
puts it into another distance from God than it hath by being a crea-
ture. This is a debasement unto hell, as the prophet speaks: " Thou
didst debase thyself even unto hell," Isa. Ivii. 9. And therefore the
condescension of God unto us in Christ is set out by his regarding of
us "when we were enemies" unto him, Rom. v. 10; that is, whilst we
were "sinners," as verse 8. This had cast us into hell itself, at the
inconceivable distance from him. Yet this hindered not him who


was " holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners," to own us as
his brethren. He says not, with those proud hypocrites in the pro-
phet, " Stand farther off, I am holier than you;" but he comes unto
us, and takes us by the hand in his love, to deliver us from this con-

2. We are in this nature obnoxious unto all miseries, in this
world and that which is to come. Man now is " born to trouble,"
all the trouble that sin can deserve or a provoked God inflict. His
misery is great upon him, and that growing and endless. He, just
ill himself, free from all, obnoxious to nothing that was grievous or
irksome, no more than the angels in heaven or Adam m paradise.
"Poena noxam sequitur ;" — "Punishment and troublefollow guiltonly
naturally." He " did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth ;"
so that God was always well pleased with him. Whatever of hard-
ship or difficulty he underwent, it was for us, and not for himself.
Might not he have left us to perish in our condition, and freely
enjoyed his own? We see how unapt those who are in prosperity,
full and rich, are to take notice of their nearest relations in poverty,
miseiy, and distress; and who among them would do so if it would
cast them into the state of those who are already miserable ? Yet so
it did the Lord Christ. His calling us brethren, and owning of us,
made him instantly obnoxious unto all the miseries the guilt whereof
we had contracted upon ourselves. The owning of his alliance unto
us cost him, as it were, all he was worth ; for being rich, "for our sakes
he became poor." He came into the prison and into the furnace to
own us. And this also renders his condescension marvellous.

3. He is inconceivably distanced from us in respect of that
place and dignity which he was designed unto. This, as we have
showed at large, was to be " Lord of all," with absolute sovereign au-
thority over the whole creation of God. We are poor abjects, who
either have not bread to eat, or have no good right to eat that which
we meet withal. Sin hath set the whole creation against us. And
if Mephibosheth thought it a great condescension in David on his
throne to take notice of him, being poor, who was yet the son of
Jonathan, what is it in this King of kings to own us for brethren
in our vile and low condition ? Thoughts of his glorious exaltation
will put a lustre on his condescension in this matter.

4. He is infinitely distanced from us in his person, in respect
of his divine nature, wherein he is and was " God over all,
blessed for ever." He did not so become man as to cease to be God.
Though he drew a veil over his infinite glory, yet he parted not with
it. He who calls us brethren, who suffered for us, who died for us,
was God still in all these things. The condescension of Christ in
this resp(^ct the apostle in an especial manner insists upon and
ihijiioves, Phil. iL 5-11. That he who in himself is thus over all,


eternally blessed, holy, powerful, should take us poor worms of the
earth into this relation with himself, and avow us for his brethren,
as it is not easy to be believed, so it is for ever to be admired.

And these are some of the heads of that distance which is be-
tween Christ and us, notwithstanding his participation of the same
nature with us. Yet such was his love unto us, such his constancy in
the pursuit of the design and purpose of his Father in bringing
many sons unto glory, that he overlooks as it were them all, and "■ is
not ashamed to call us brethren." And if he will do this because he
is of one with us, because a foundation of this relation is laid in his
participation of our nature, how much more will he continue so to
do when he hath perfected this relation by the communication of
his Sj)irit!

And tills is a ground of unspeakable consolation unto believers,
with supportment in every condition. No unworthiness in them, no
misery upon them, shall ever hinder the Lord Christ from owning
them, and openly avowing them to be his brethren. He is a brother
born for the day of trouble, a Redeemer for the friendless and father-
less. Let their miseries be what they will, he will be ashamed of
none but of them who are ashamed of him and his ways when perse-
cuted and reproached, A little while will clear up great mistakes.
All the world shall see at the last day whom Christ will own; and
it will be a great surprisal, when men shall hear him call them breth-
ren whom they hated, and esteemed as the ofifscouring of all things.
He doth it, indeed, already by his word ; but they will not attend
thereunto. But at the last day they shall both see and hear, whether
they will or no. And herein, I say, lies the great consolation of
believers. The world rejects them, it may be their own relations
despise them, — they are persecuted, hated, reproached ; but the Lord
Christ is not ashamed of them. He will not pass by them becnuse
they are poor and in rags, — it may be, reckoned (as he himself was
for them) among malefactors. They may see also the wisdom, grace,
and love of God in this matter. His great design in the incarna-
tion of his Son was to bring him into that condition wherein he
might naturally care for them, as their brother; that he might not be
ashamed of them, but be sensible of their wants, their state and
condition in all things, and so be always ready and meet to relieve
them. Let the world now take its course, and the men thereof do
their worst; let Satan rage, and the powers of hell be stirred up
against them ; let them load them with reproaches and scorn, and
cover them all over with the filth and dirt of their false imputations;
let them bring them into rags, into dungeons, unto death; — Ciirist
comes in the midst of all this confusion and says, ' Surely these are
my brethren, the children of my Father,' and he becomes their
Saviour. And this is a stable foundation of comfort and support-


ment in every condition. And are we not taught our duty also
herein, namely, not to be ashamed of him or his gospel, or of any
one that bears his image? The Lord Christ is now himself in that
condition that even the worst of men esteem it an honour to own
him: but indeed they are no less ashamed of him than they would
have been when he was carrying his cross upon his shoulders or
hanging upon the tree; for of every thing that he hath in this world
they are ashamed. His gospel, his ways, his worship, his Spirit, his
saints, they are all of them the objects of their scorn; and in these
things it is that the Lord Christ may be truly honoured or be de-
spised. For those thoughts which men have of his present glory,
abstracting from these things, he is not concerned in them ; they are
all exercised about an imaginary Christ, that is unconcerned in the
word and Spirit of the Lord Jesus. These are the things whereiw
we are not to be ashamed of him. See Rom. i. ] 6 ; 2 Tim. i. 1 6,
iv. 16.

Fourthly, That which remaineth of these verses consisteth in the tes-
timonies which the apostle produceth out of the Old Testament in the
confirmation of what he had taught and asserted. And two things
are to be considered concerning them, — the end for which they are
produced, and the especial importance of the words contained in them.
The first he mentions is from Ps. xxii. 22, " I will declare thy name
unto my brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise
thee." The end why the apostle produceth this testimony, is to
confirm what he had said immediately before, namely, that witk
respect unto his being one with the children, Christ owns them for
his brethren ; for this he doth expressly in this place. And we are
to take notice that the apostle in the use of these testimonies doth
not observe any order, so that one of them should confirm one part,
and another another part of his assertion, in the order wherein he
had laid them down. It sufficeth him that his whole intendment,
in all the parts of it, is confirmed in and by them all, one having a
more especial respect unto one part than another. In this first it
is clear that he proves what he had immediately before affirmed,
namely, that the Lord Christ owns the children for his brethren,
because of their common interest in the same nature. And there
needs nothing to evince the pertinency of this testimony but oidy
to show that it is the Messiah which speaketh in that psalm, and
whose words these are; which we have done fully already in our

For the explication of the words themselves, we may consider
the twofold act or duty that the Lord Christ takes upon himself in
them ; — first, that he will declare the name of God unto his brethren ;
and, secondly, that he would celebrate him with praises in the
congregation. In the former we must inquire what is meant by


the " name" of God, and then how it is or was " declared" by Jesus

This expression, the "name of God," is variously used. Sometimes
it denotes the being of God, God himself; sometimes his aitrihutes,
his excellencies or divine perfections, some one or more of them.
As it is proposed unto sinners as an object for their faith, trust, and
love, it denotes in an especial manner his love, grace, and goodness,
• — that in himself he is good, gracious, and merciful, Isa. 1. 10. And
withal it intimates what God requires of them towards whom he is
80 good and gracious. This name of God is unknown to men by
nature; so is the way and means whereby he will communicate his
goodness and grace unto them. And this is the name of God here
intended, which the Lord Jesus " manifested unto the men given him
out of the world," John xvii. 6 ; which is the same with his declaring
the Father, whom "no man hath seen at any time," John i. 18. This
is that name of God which the Lord Jesus Christ had experience of
in his suiferings, and the manifestation whereof unto his brethren
he had procured thereby.

Hereof he says in the psalm, "^"^^P^, "I will declare it," — recount
it in order, number the particulars that belong unto it, and so dis-
tinctly and evidently make it known. ' AvayytX^, ' I will make it
known as a messenger, sent from thee and by thee.' And there
are two ways whereby the Lord Christ declared this name of God:
■ — 1. In his own person; and that both before and after his suffer-
ings: for although it be mentioned here as a work that ensued his
death, yet is it not exclusive of his teachings before his suffering,
because they also were built upon the supposition thereof. Thus in
the days of his flesh, he instructed his disciples and preached the
gospel in the synagogues of the Jews and in the temple, declaring
the name of God unto them. So also after his resurrection he con-
ferred with his apostles about the kingdom of God, Acts i. 2. By
his Spirit; and that both in the effusion of it upon his disciples,
enabling them personally to preach the gospel unto the men of
their own generation, and in the inspiration of some of them, en-
abling them to commit the truth unto writing for the instruction of
the elect unto the end of the world. And herein doth the apostle,
according unto his wonted manner, not only confirm what he had
before delivered, but make way for what he had further to instruct
the Hebrews in, namely, the prophetical office of Christ, as he is
the great revealer of the will of God and teacher of the church;
which he professedly insists upon in the beginning of the next

In the second part of this first testimony is declared further: — •
1. What Christ will moreover do: He will "sing praises unto God;"
and, 2. Where he will do it: "In the midst of the congregation." The


expression of botli these is accommodated unto the declaration of
God's name and of praising him in the temple. 1. The singing of
hymns of praise unto God in the great congregation was then a
principal part of his worship. And in the first expression two things
are observable: — (1.) What Christ undertakes to do; and that is, to
praise God. Now this is only exegetical of what went before. He
would praise God by declaring his name. There is no way whereby
the praise of God may be celebrated like that of declaring his grace,
goodness, and love unto men ; whereby they may be won to believe
and trust in him, whence glory redounds unto him. (2.) The cheer-
fulness and alacrity of the spirit of Christ in this work. He would
do it as with joy and singing, with such a frame of heart as was
required in them who were to sing the praises of God in the great
assemblies in the temple. 2. Where would he do this? ''^i? ^^^f,
" in the midst of the congregation," — " the great congregation," as
he calls it, verse 23 ; that is, the great assembly of the people in
the temple. And this was a type of the whole church of the elect
imder the new testament. The Lord Christ, in his own person, by
his Spirit in his apostles, by his word, and by all his messengers unto
the end of the world, setting forth the love, grace, goodness, and
mercy of God in him the mediator, sets forth the praise of God in
the midst of the congregation. I shall only add, that whereas sing-
ing of hymns unto God was an especial part of the instituted wor-
ship under the old testament, to whose use these expressions are
accommodated, it is evident that the Lord Christ hath eminently
set forth this praise of God in his institution of worship under the
new testament, wherein God will ever be glorified and praised. This
was that which the Lord Christ engaged to do upon the issue of his
sufferings; and we may propose it unto our example and instruc-
tion, namely, —

V. That which was principally in the heart of Christ upon his
sufferings, was to declare and manifest the love, grace, and good-will
of God unto men, that they might come to an acquaintance with
him and to acceptance before him.

There are two things in the psalm and the words that manifest
hov/ much this was upon the heart of Christ. The most part of the
psalm containeth the great conflict that he had with his sufferings,
and the displeasure of God against sin declared therein. He is
no sooner delivered from thence, but instantly he engageth in this
work. As he lands upon the shore from that tempest wherein he was
tossed in his passion, he cries out, " I will declare thy name unto
my brethren : in the midst of the congregation will I praise thee."
And thus we find, that upon his resurrection he did not imme-
diately ascend into glory, but first declared the name of God unto
his apostles and disciples, and then took order that by them it should


be declared and published to all the world. This was upon his
spirit, and he entered not into his glorious rest until he had pi-r-
formed it. The words themselves also do evidence it, in that ex-
pression of celebrating God's name with hymns, with singing. It
was a joy of heart unto him to be engaged in this work. Singing
is the frame [ivi)v,aouvru)v, James v. 13) of them that are in a glad,
free, rejoicing condition. So was the Lord Christ in this work. He
rejoiced of old with the very thoughts of this work, Prov. viii. 30, 31 ;
Isa. Ixi. 1-3 ; and it was one of the glorious promises that were made
unto him upon his undertaking the work of our salvation, that he
should declare or preach the gospel, and the name of God therein,
unto the conversion of Jews and Gentiles, Isa. xlix. 1-10. He
rejoiced, therefore, greatly to do it; and that, —

1. Because herein consisted the Tnanifestation and exaltation
of the glory of God, which he principally in his whole work aimed
at. He came to do the will, and thereby to set forth the glory, of
the Father. By and in him God designed to make his glory known;
— the glory of his love and grace in sending him ; the glory of his
justice and faithfulness in his sufferings; the glory of his mercy in
the reconciliation and pardon of sinners; the glory of his wisdom in
the whole mystery of his mediation ; and the glory together of aM
his external excellencies in bringinor his sons unto the everlastincf
enjoyment of him. Now nothing of all this could have been made
known, unless the Lord Christ had taken upon him to preach the
gospel and declare the name of God. Without this, whatever else
he had done or suffered had been lost, as unto the interest of the
glory of God. This, then, being that which he principally aimed at,
this design must needs be greatly in his mind. He took care that
so great glory, built on so great a foundation as his incarnation and
mediation, should not be lost. His other work was necessary, but
this was a joy of heart and soul unto him.

2. The salvation of the sons to be brought unto glory, with all
their interest in the benefit of his sufferings, depended on this
work of his. How much he sought that, his whole work declares.
For their sakes it was that he came down from heaven, and " was
made flesh, and dwelt among them;" for their sakes did he undergo
all the miseries that the world could cast upon him; for their sakes
did he undergo the curse of the law, and wrestle with the displea-
sure and wrath of God against sin. And all this seemed as it were
little unto him, for the love he bare them ; as Jacob's hard service
did to him for his love unto Rachel. Now, after he had done all
this for them, unless he had declared the name of God unto them
in the gospel, they could have had no benefit by it; for if they be-
Keve not, they cannot be saved. And how should they believe
without the word? and how or whence could they hear the word


unless it had been preached unto them? They could not of them-
selves have known any thing of that name of God, which is their life
and salvation. Some men talk of I know not what declaration of
God's name, nature, and glory, by the works of nature and provi-
dence ; but if the Lord Christ had not indeed revealed, declared,
and preached these things, these disputers themselves would not have
been in any other condition than all mankind are who are left unto
those teachers, — which is most dark and miserable. The Lord Christ
knew that without his performance of this work, not one of the sous,
tiie conduct of whom to glory he had undertaken, could ever have
been brought unto the knowledge of the name of God, or unto faith
in him, or obedience unto him; which made him earnestly and
heartily engage into it.

3. Hereon depended his oiun glory also. His elect were to be
gathered unto him; and in, among, and over them, was his glorious
kingdom to be erected. Without their conversion unto God this
could not be done. In the state of nature they also are " children of
wrath," and belong to the kingdom of Satan. And this declaration
of the name of God is the great way and means of their calling, cdu-
version, and translation from the power of Satan into his kingdom.
Tlie gospel is " the rod of his strength," whereby " his people are
made willing in the day of his power." In brief, the gathering of
his church, the setting up of his kingdom, the establishment of his
throne, the setting of the crown upon his head, depend wholly on
his declaring the name of God in the preaching of the gospel. See-
ing, therefore, that the glory of God which he aimed at, the salva-

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