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So it is evident, that by name is sometimes meant much the same thing as praise, by several places which have been just mentioned, (as Isa. xlviii. 9. Jer. xiii. 11. Deut. xxvi. 19.) And also by Jer. xxxiii. 9. “And it shall be unto me for a name, a praise, and an honour, before all the nations of the earth, which shall hear of all the good I do unto them." Zeph. iii. 20. "I will make you a name and a praise among all people of the earth."
And it seems that the expression or exhibition of God's goodness is especially called his name, in Exod. xxxiii. 19. “I will make all my goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the name of the Lord before thee." And chap. xxxiv. 5, 6, 7. "And the Lord descended in the cloud, and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the Lord. And the Lord passed by before him, and proclaimed the Lord, the Lord God gracious and merciful, long-suffering and abundant in goodness and truth; keeping mercy for thousands," &c.
And the same illustrious brightness and effulgence in the pillar of cloud that appeared in the wilderness, and dwelt above the mercy-seat in the tabernacle and temple, (or rather the spiritual, divine brightness and effulgence represented by it,) so often called the glory of the Lord, is also often called the name of the Lord. Because God's glory was to dwell in the tabernacle, therefore he promises, Exod. xxix. 43. "There will I meet with the children of Israel, aud the tabernacle shall be sanctified by my glory." And the temple was called the house of God's glory, Isa. Ix. 7. In like manner, the name of God is said to dwell in the sanctuary. Thus we often read of the place that God chose, to put his name there; or, as it is in the Hebrew, to cause his NAME to inhabit there. So it is sometimes rendered by our translators. As Deut. xii. 11. "Then there shall be a place which the Lord your God shall choose to cause his name to dwell there." And the temple is often spoken of as built for God's name. And in Psalm. lxxiv. 7. the temple is called the dwelling-place of God's name. The mercy-seat in the temple was called the throne of God's name or glory, Jer. xiv. 21. "Do not abhor us, for thy name's sake, do not disgrace the throne of thy glory." Here God's name and his glory, seem to be spoken of as the same.
Shewing, that the ultimate End of the Creation of the World is but one, and what that one end is.
From what has been observed in the last section, it appears, if the whole of what is said relating to this affair be duly weighed, and one part compared with another, we shall have reason to think that the design of the Spirit of God is not to represent God's ultimate end as manifold, but as ONE. For though it be signified by various names, yet they appear not to be names of different things, but various names involving each other in their meaning; either different names of the same thing, or names of several parts of one whole; or of the same whole viewed in various lights, or in its different respects and relations. For it appears, that all that is ever spoken of in the scripture as an ultimate end of God's works, is included in that one phrase, the glory of God; which is the name by which the ultimate end of God's works is most commonly called in scripture; and seems most aptly to signify the thing.
The thing signified by that name, the glory of God, when spoken of as the supreme and ultimate end of all God's works, is the emanation and true external expression of God's internal glory and fulness; meaning by his fulness, what has already been explained; or, in other words, God's internal glory, in a true and just exhibition, or external existence of it. It is confessed, that there is a degree of obscurity in these definitions; but perhaps an obscurity which is unavoidable, through the imperfection of language to express things of so sublime a nature. And therefore the thing may possibly be better understood, by using a variety of expressions, by a particular consideration of it, as it were, by parts, than by any short definition.
It includes the exercise of God's perfections to produce a proper effect, in opposition to their lying eternally dormant and ineffectual: as his power being eternally without any act or fruit of that power; his wisdom eternally ineffectual in any wise production, or prudent disposal of any thing, &c. The manifestation of his internal glory to created understandings. The communication of the infinite fulness of God to the creature. The creature's high esteem of God, love to him, and complacence and joy in him; and the proper exercises and expressions of these.
These at first view may appear to be entirely distinct things but if we more closely consider the matter, they will all appear to be ONE thing, in a variety of views and relations.
They are all but the emanation of God's glory; or the excel lent brightness and fulness of the divinity diffused, overflowing, and as it were enlarged; or in one word, existing ad extra. God exercising his perfection to produce a proper effect, is not distinct from the emanation or communication of his fulness: for this is the effect, viz. his fulness communicated, and the producing of this effect is the communication of his fulness; and there is nothing in this effectual exerting of God's perfection, but the emanation of God's internal glory.
Now God's internal glory is either in his understanding or will. The glory or fulness of his understanding is his knowledge. The internal glory and fulness of God, having its special seat in his will, is his holiness and happiness. The whole of God's internal good or glory is in these three things, viz. his infinite knowledge; his infinite virtue or holiness, and his infinite joy and happiness. Indeed there are a great many attributes in God, according to our way of conceiving them: but all may be reduced to these; or to their degree, circumstances and relations. We have no conception of God's power, different from the degree of these things, with a certain relation of them to effects. God's infinity is not properly a distinct kind of good, but only expresses the degree of good there is in him. So God's eternity is not a distinct good; but is the dura tion of good. His immutability is still the same good, with a negation of change. So that, as I said, the fulness of the Godhead is the fulness of his understanding, consisting in his knowledge; and the fulness of his will, consisting in his virtue and happiness.
And therefore, the external glory of God consists in the communication of these. The communication of his knowledge is chiefly in giving the knowledge of himself: for this is the knowledge in which the fulness of God's understanding chiefly consists. And thus we see how the manifestation of God's glory to created understandings, and their seeing and knowing it, is not distinct from an emanation or communication of God's fulness, but clearly implied in it. Again, the communication of God's virtue or holiness is principally in communicating the love of himself. And thus we see how, not only the creature's seeing and knowing God's excellence, but also supremely esteeming and loving him, belongs to the communication of God's fulness. And the communication of God's joy and happiness consists chiefly in communicating to the creature that happiness and joy which consists in rejoicing in God, and in his glorious excellency; for in such joy God's own happiness does principally consist. And in these things, knowing God's excellency, loving God for it, and rejoicing in it; and in the exercise and expression of these, consists God's honour and praise; so that these are clearly implied in that
glory of God, which consists in the emanation of his internal glory.
And though all these things, which seem to be so various, are signified by that glory which the scripture speaks of as the ultimate end of all God's works; yet it is manifest there is no greater, and no other variety in it, than in the internal and essential glory of God itself. God's internal glory is partly in his understanding, and partly in his will. And this internal glory, as seated in the will of God, implies both his holiness and his happiness: both are evidently God's glory, according to the use of the phrase. So that as God's external glory is only the emanation of his internal, this variety necessarily follows. And again, it hence appears that here is no other variety or distinction, but what necessarily arises from the distinct faculties of the creature to which the communica tion is made, as created in the image of God: even as having these two faculties of understanding and will. God communicates himself to the understanding of the creature, in giving him the knowledge of his glory; and to the will of the creature, in giving him holiness, consisting primarily in the love of God and in giving the creature happiness chiefly consisting in joy in God. These are the sum of that emanation of divine fulness called in scripture, the glory of God. The first part of "We this glory is called truth, the latter grace, John i. 14. beheld his glory, the glory of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth."
Thus we see that the great end of God's works, which is so variously expressed in scripture, is indeed but ONE; and this one end is most properly and comprehensively called, THE GLORY OF GOD; by which name it is most commonly called in scripture; and is fitly compared to an effulgence or emanation of light from a luminary. Light is the external expression, exhibition, and manifestation of the excellency of the luminary, of the sun for instance: It is the abundant, extensive emanation and communication of the fulness of the sun to innumerable beings that partake of it. It is by this that the sun itself is seen, and his glory beheld, and all other things are discovered: it is by a participation of this communication from the sun, that surrounding objects receive all their lustre, beauty, and brightness. It is by this that all nature receives life, comfort, and joy. Light is abundantly used in scripture to represent and signify these three things, knowledge, holiness, and happiness.
It is used to signify knowledge, or that manifestation and evidence by which knowledge is received. Psal. xix. 8. and exix. 105, 135. Prov. vi. 23, Isa. viii. 20. and ix. 2. and xxix. 18. Dan. v. 11. Eph. v. 13. "But all things that are reproved, are made manifest by the light; for whatsoever doth make manifest is light," &c.
What has been said may be sufficient to shew, how those things, which are spoken of in scripture as ultimate ends of God's works, though they may seem at first view to be distinct, are all plainly to be reduced to this one thing, viz. God's internal glory or fulness existing in its emanation. And though God in seeking this end, seeks the creature's good; yet therein appears his supreme regard to himself.
The emanation or communication of the divine fulness, consisting in the knowledge of God, love to him, and joy in him, has relation indeed both to God and the creature: but it has relation to God as its fountain, as the thing communicated, is something of his internal fulness. The water in the stream is something of the fountain; and the beams of the sun are something of the sun. And again they have relation to God as their object for the knowledge communicated is the knowledge of God; and the love communicated, is the love of God: and the happiness communicated, is joy in God. In the creature's knowing, esteeming, loving, rejoicing in, and praising God, the glory of God is both exhibited and acknowledged; his fulness is received and returned. Here is both an emanation and remanation. The refulgence shines upon and into the creature, and is reflected back to the luminary. The beams of glory come from God, are something of God, and are refunded back again to their original. So that the whole is of God, and in God, and to God; and he is the beginning, and the middle, and the end.
And though it be true that God has respect to the creature in these things; yet his respect to himself, and to the creature, are not properly a double and divided respect. What has been said (chap. I. sect. 3, 4.) may be sufficient to shew this. Nevertheless, it may not be amiss here briefly to say a few things; though mostly implied in what has been said already.
When God was about to create the world, he had respect to that emanation of his glory, which is actually the consequence of the creation, both with regard to himself and the creature. He had regard to it as an emanation from himself, a communication of himself, and, as the thing communicated, in its nature returned to himself, as its final term. And he had regard to it also as the emanation was to the creature, and as the thing communicated was in the creature, as its subject.
And God had regard to it in this manner, as he had a su
It is used to signify virtue, or moral good Job xxv. 5. Eccl. viii. 1. Isa v. 29. and xxiv 23. and lxii 1. Ezek xxviii 7, 17. Dan. ii. 31. 1 John i. 5, &c.
And it is abundantly used to signify comfort, joy, and happiness. Esth viii. 16. Job xviii. 8. and xxii. 28. and xxix 3 and xxx 26. Psal. xxvii. 1. and xcvii. 11. and exviii. 27. and cxii 4 Isa. xliii. 16 and 1. 10. and lix. 9. Jer. xiii. 16. Lam. iii. Ezek. xxxii. 8. Amos v. 18. Mic. 7, 8, 9, &c.