Hebrews 2* The duty of stedfastly adhering to Christ and his gospel.(1-4) His sufferings are no objection against his pre-eminence.(5-9) The reason of his sufferings, and the fitness of them.(10-13) Christ's taking the nature of man, and not his takingthe nature of angels, was necessary to his priestly office.(14-18)1-4 Christ being proved to be superior to the angels, thisdoctrine is applied. Our minds and memories are like a leakyvessel, they do not, without much care, retain what is pouredinto them. This proceeds from the corruption of our nature,temptations, worldly cares, and pleasures. Sinning against thegospel is neglect of this great salvation; it is a contempt ofthe saving grace of God in Christ, making light of it, notcaring for it, not regarding either the worth of gospel grace,or the want of it, and our undone state without it. The Lord'sjudgments under the gospel dispensation are chiefly spiritual,but are on that account the more to be dreaded. Here is anappeal to the consciences of sinners. Even partial neglects willnot escape rebukes; they often bring darkness on the souls theydo not finally ruin. The setting forth the gospel was continuedand confirmed by those who heard Christ, by the evangelists andapostles, who were witnesses of what Jesus Christ began both todo and to teach; and by the gifts of the Holy Ghost, qualifiedfor the work to which they were called. And all this accordingto God's own will. It was the will of God that we should havesure ground for our faith, and a strong foundation for our hopein receiving the gospel. Let us mind this one thing needful, andattend to the Holy Scriptures, written by those who heard thewords of our gracious Lord, and were inspired by his Spirit;then we shall be blessed with the good part that cannot be takenaway. 5-9 Neither the state in which the church is at present, norits more completely restored state, when the prince of thisworld shall be cast out, and the kingdoms of the earth becomethe kingdom of Christ, is left to the government of the angels:Christ will take to him his great power, and will reign. Andwhat is the moving cause of all the kindness God shows to men ingiving Christ for them and to them? it is the grace of God. As areward of Christ's humiliation in suffering death, he hasunlimited dominion over all things; thus this ancient scripturewas fulfilled in him. Thus God has done wonderful things for usin creation and providence, but for these we have made thebasest returns. 10-13 Whatever the proud, carnal, and unbelieving may imagineor object, the spiritual mind will see peculiar glory in thecross of Christ, and be satisfied that it became Him, who in allthings displays his own perfections in bringing many sons toglory, to make the Author of their salvation perfect throughsufferings. His way to the crown was by the cross, and so mustthat of his people be. Christ sanctifies; he has purchased andsent the sanctifying Spirit: the Spirit sanctifies as the Spiritof Christ. True believers are sanctified, endowed with holyprinciples and powers, set apart to high and holy uses andpurposes. Christ and believers are all of one heavenly Father,who is God. They are brought into relation with Christ. But thewords, his not being ashamed to call them brethren, express thehigh superiority of Christ to the human nature. This is shownfrom three texts of Scripture. See #Ps 22:22; 18:2; Isa 8:18|. 14-18 The angels fell, and remained without hope or help.Christ never designed to be the Saviour of the fallen angels,therefore he did not take their nature; and the nature of angelscould not be an atoning sacrifice for the sin of man. Here is aprice paid, enough for all, and suitable to all, for it was inour nature. Here the wonderful love of God appeared, that, whenChrist knew what he must suffer in our nature, and how he mustdie in it, yet he readily took it upon him. And this atonementmade way for his people's deliverance from Satan's bondage, andfor the pardon of their sins through faith. Let those who dreaddeath, and strive to get the better of their terrors, no longerattempt to outbrave or to stifle them, no longer grow carelessor wicked through despair. Let them not expect help from theworld, or human devices; but let them seek pardon, peace, grace,and a lively hope of heaven, by faith in Him who died and roseagain, that thus they may rise above the fear of death. Theremembrance of his own sorrows and temptations, makes Christmindful of the trials of his people, and ready to help them. Heis ready and willing to succour those who are tempted, and seekhim. He became man, and was tempted, that he might be every wayqualified to succour his people, seeing that he had passedthrough the same temptations himself, but continued perfectlyfree from sin. Then let not the afflicted and tempted despond,or give place to Satan, as if temptations made it wrong for themto come to the Lord in prayer. Not soul ever perished undertemptation, that cried unto the Lord from real alarm at itsdanger, with faith and expectation of relief. This is our dutyupon our first being surprised by temptations, and would stoptheir progress, which is our wisdom.
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