« AnteriorContinuar »
the members rejoice with it. Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular. And God hath set some in the church, first Apostles, secondarily Prophets, thirdly teachers; after that, miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues. Are all Apostles? Are all Prophets ? Are all teachers? Are all workers of miracles? Have all the gifts of healing? Do all speak with tongues ? Do all interpret'? Having then gifts, differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith ; or ministry, let us wait on our ministering; or he that teacheth, on teaching; or he that exhorteth, on exhortation ; he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that showeth mercy, with cheerfulness The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? For we being many are one bread and one body; for we are all partakers of that one bread". Sect. 17. The dignity of all the members of the church
of Christ, even in this militant state. To the saints and faithful in Christo; elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit unto obedience, and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ; begotten again unto a lively hope, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead; to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you"; to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and calledo; being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for everd for both he that sanctifieth, and they who are sanctified, are all of one; wherefore he is not ashamed to call
f 1 Cor. xii. 26–30. $17. Eph. i. 1.
d 1 Pet. i. 23.
* Rom. xii. 6, 7, 8.
h 1 Cor. x, 16, 17.
ther brethreno; ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people, that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light; which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God; which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy'. Now are we the sons of Gods; and if children, then heirs, heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ".
Sect. 18. Their relation to the blessed in heaven.
That which we have seen and heard, declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full”.
For ye are not come unto the mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire; nor unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest, and the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words, which voice they that heard, entreated that the word should not be spoken to them any more; but ye
come unto Mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of the first-born which are written in heaven, and to God the judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, and to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant
Sect. 19. Of the church triumphant. I John beheld, and lo a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; and cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto
1 1 Pet. ii. 9, 10.
1 John, ïïi. 2.
e Heb. ji. 11.
h Rom. viii. 17. $18. a 1 John, i. 3, 4.
c Heb. xii. 22,23,24.
Ulleb, xii. 18, 19.
the Lambo. Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen. And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes ? and whence came they? And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple; and he that sitteth on the throne, shall dwell among them. They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more, neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters; and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes o.
And I heard a great voice out of heaven, saying, Behold the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain; for the former things are passed away. And he that sat upon the throne, said, Behold I make all things new. And I will give unto him that is athirst, of the fountain of the water of life freely. He that overcometh shall inherit all things, and I will be his God, and he shall be my son And there came unto me one of the seven angels, saying, Come bither, I will show thee the bride, the Lamb's wife. And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me that great city the holy Jerusalem descending out of heaven, from God, having the glory of God; and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like to a jasper stone, clear as crystal. And I saw no temple therein ; for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. And the city had
$19. Rev. vii. 9, 10.
Rev, xxi. 3–7.
c Rev. vii. 16, 17.
b Rev. vii. 12—15.
no need of the sun, neither of the moon to shine in it; for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. And the nations of them which are saved, shall walk in the light of it'; and there shall in nowise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie; but they which are written in the Lamb's book of lifes. And there shall be no more curse; but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him; and they shall see his face; and his naine shall be in their foreheads; and they shall reign for ever and ever". Concerning the catholic church, and the churches
established in different places. “ Before we leave this subject, it is to be observed, that, by the true, holy, and catholic church, is properly meant the whole collective body of saints in all places on earth, in any particular age.
But we often find the scriptures mentioning particular churches, in particular places. These were the societies of Christians, whose dwellings, in the same city or neighbourhood, rendered it convenient for them to meet together at stated times and places, for the worship of God, and for edifying, one another. But though each of these was a regular society or church within themselves, they nevertheless maintained an intimate communion, on all occasions, with other worshipping assemblies of Christians.
“ The scripture gives but a short account of the founding or progress of these churches. However, it is evident, that there were many of them throughout Judea, Galilee, and Samaria, before the gospel was preached to the Gentiles, Acts, ix. 31. After that happy event, we read of great numbers in different regions through the wide extent of the Roman empire; of churches in Syria, Galatia, Asia, Macedonia, and
Rev. xxi. 22, 23, 24.
* Rev. xxi. 27.
h Rev, xxij. 3, 4, 5.
Achaia; and of churches in the cities of Antioch, Iconium, Cesarea, Rome, Corinth, Ephesus, Philippi, Colosse, Thessalonica, Smyrna, Pergamus, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, Laodicea, &c. The Apostle Paul also speaks of churches in particular houses; probably because the Christians in those places were wont to assemble under these roofs. Thus we read of the church in the house of Aquila and Priscilla, Rom. xvi. 3, 4. Of the church in the house of Nymphas, Col. iv. 15; and of that in the house of Philemon. Philem. 2."
OF THOSE THAT MINISTER IN THE CHURCH OF GOD
UNDER THE DISPENSATION OF THE GOSPEL. SECT. I. The twelve Apostles called, and authorized
by our blessed Lord, during the time of his ministry on earth, and after his resurrection from the dead. 2. His instructions to them relating to their duty and sufferings. - 3. Matthias numbered with the elever.
-4. The effusion of the Holy Ghost on the day of Pentecost. — 5. The first ministrations of the Apostles at Jerusalem.-6. The election of the seven deacons. —7. Saul called to the apostleship. ~8. Different denominations of ministers in the church of Christ, during the apostolic age.-9. Of a succession of proper persons to be set apart for the ministry of the word, and the government of the church of Christ.
- 10. What ought to be their character and behaviour. — 11. Instructions concerning their public ministrations, and the exercise of their authority in the church of Christ. - 12. The efficacy of the ministrations of the gospel is of God. — 13. The noble example of St. Paul in preaching the Gospel. – 14. The duty of Christians towards those that are over them in the Lord, and that minister to them in holy things.15. To pray for them. — 16. To provide for their support. - 17. Concerning false apostles, teachers of the kingdom of Antichrist.