Journal – September 26, 2021
10 For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the Captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. 11 For both He who sanctifies and those who are being sanctified are all of one, for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren, 12 saying: “I will declare Your name to My brethren; In the midst of the assembly, I will sing praise to You.”
BRINGING MANY SONS TO GLORY (PART 2)
Vs. 10d to make the Captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. To understand this, we must observe that the Apostle is not speaking here of the elect absolutely but of the bringing them into glory in a special manner, he treats here of that part of Christ’s office of Mediator which especially concerns the leading of the sons to glory. The word to make . . . perfect signifies to consecrate, to dedicate, to sanctify to some special office, or part of that office. By all the sufferings in His life and death—by which sufferings He worked out the salvation of the elect—did God consecrate and dedicate Him to be a Prince, a Leader, a Captain of salvation to His people. The whole work of saving the sons of God, from first to last, is committed to the Lord Jesus; God hath set Him as a Lord over His whole house and placed Him in trust as a faithful Captain. This office He performs with care and watchfulness, also with great tenderness and love, and with power, authority, and majesty.
As the Captain of salvation, He goes before the sons of God. He went before them in obedience; I have given you an example that you should do as I have done. The utmost perfection which we are bound to aim at is holiness and obedience, is nothing but conformity unto Jesus Christ—to mark His footsteps and to follow Him. He went before them in sufferings, and therein is a Leader to them by His example. Peter tells us Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that we should follow His steps (1 Peter 2:21) that is that we should be ready and prepared to have patience in sufferings when we are called thereunto. The apostle Paul writes I now rejoice in my sufferings for you and fill up in my flesh what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ, for the sake of His body, which is the Church (Colossians 1:24), who both before underwent them in His own Person, and led the way to all that should follow Him.
But He hath gone before the sons in passing through death and entering glory. In His resurrection He has showed us that death is not the end of our course, but a passage into another more abiding condition. Jesus as our forerunner hath entered heaven, and as the Captain of salvation He guides and directs the sons on their way to glory. As that way is revealed in the Word of God, He enables them by His Spirit to see, discern, and know It in such a holy and saving manner as to bring them to the end of it. He not only directs them on their way, but He supplies them with strength by His grace that they may be able to pass on in their way. He subdues their enemies. “Be of good cheer,” He says, “I have overcome the world.” He not only subdues their enemies for them but also in them. Thanks be unto God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ, so that in all things we are more then conquerors. And then the Captain of Salvation provides a reward, a crown for these sons of God. He is gone before them to prepare a place for them, and He will come again and receive them to Himself that where He is they may be also.
And these things should teach us to go ourselves unto Him, and to rely upon Him, and in all things look to Him for guidance and direction. Let us observe:
- That the Lord Jesus Christ being Priest, sacrifice, and altar Himself, the offering whereby He was consecrated to the perfection of His office was of necessity part of that work which He, as our Priest and Mediator, was to undergo and preform.
- The Lord Christ being consecrated and perfected through sufferings, has consecrated the way of suffering for all that follow Him on their way to glory. Believers are predestinated to be conformed to His image, and no small part of their conformity consists in their sufferings and afflictions
- The consecration of the Lord Christ by suffering has made all sufferings for the gospel honorable, not only so, but they are also useful and profitable; mixing His grace and love and wisdom with these bitter waters, He has made them sweet and wholesome.
Vs. 11 For both He who sanctifies and those who are being sanctified are all of one, for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren. Now to further describe the Captain of salvation and the sons, the Apostle intimates a further necessity of His sufferings—because they were to be sanctified by Him, which could not otherwise be but by His death and blood-shedding. For both He who sanctifies and those who are being sanctified are all of one. The Lord Jesus is the great Sanctifier of the Church, He sanctifies every son whom He brings to glory, He will never glorify an unsanctified person. It is utterly impossible that any soul not washed in the blood of Christ, not sanctified by His Spirit and grace, should stand in the sight of God. None can serve Him here unless their conscience be purged from dead works by the blood of Christ, nor can they come to Him hereafter unless they are washed from all their defilements. Jesus Christ—Sanctifier—is the Head, and they the members of His body. He is holy and so must they be also, a living Head and dead members, how incredible would that be. Christ loved the Church and gave Himself for it that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word, that He might present it to Himself a glorious Church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that it should be holy and without blemish.
There is surely a woeful mistake in the world. It is grown among us almost an abhorrence unto all flesh to say that the Church of God is to be holy. If men be baptized whether they will or not, and outwardly profess the name of Christ, though not one of them be truly sanctified, yet they are, so it is said, the Church of Christ. But let none deceive themselves, sanctification is a qualification indispensably necessary to them who will be under the conduct of the Lord Christ unto salvation. He will only lead those to heaven that He has sanctified on earth. The holy God will not receive unholy persons, this living Head will not admit dead members, nor bring men into the possession of a glory which they neither love nor like.
The sanctifier and the sanctified are all of one. He and they are of one nature of one mass of one blood, and hereby He became meet to suffer for them, and they to be in a capacity of enjoying the benefit of His sufferings. The agreement of Christ and the elect in one common nature is the foundation of His fitness to be an undertaker on their behalf, and of the equity of their being made partakers of the benefits of His mediation, but this will occur again more fully, (verse 14).
For which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren. That is because they are one, partakers of one common nature. He calls them brethren, He not only declares them to be so, but He owns them and asserts them as such. This is a wonderful expression of His condescension and love. He is not ashamed to call them brethren, though considering what Himself is, and what they are, it should seem that He might justly be so. Four things may be noticed as to the distance between us and Christ which makes His condescension so marvelous:
- The immunity of the nature wherein He was of one with us in His Person from all sin.
- His owning of us as brethren made Him obnoxious to all the miseries, the guilt where we contracted upon ourselves. He who was rich, for our sakes became poor.
- He is inconceivable distanced from us in respect of that place and dignity which He was designed for. Thoughts of His glorious exaltation as King of kings will put a luster on His condescension in owning us as brethren.
- He is infinitely distanced from us in respect of His Divine nature wherein He is, and was, God overall, blessed for evermore. He did not so because man as to cease to be God. He who calls us brethren, who suffered for us, was God still in all these things.
Vs. 12 saying: “I will declare Your name to My brethren; In the midst of the assembly, I will sing praise to You. This is the name of God which the Lord Jesus manifested to the men given Him out of the world, which is the same with His declaring the Father whom no man has seen at any time. He made known the name of His Father in His own Person and that both before and after His sufferings, also by His Spirit whom He gave unto His disciples, enabling them to preach to men of their own generation, and in the inspiration of some of them enabling them to commit this in writing for the instruction of the elect unto the end of the world.
In the midst of the assembly, I will sing praise to You, this explains what went before. 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, and the glory contributes to Him. The Lord Christ in His own Person, by His Spirit in His apostles, by His Word, and by all His messengers to 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.That which was principally in the heart of the Lord Jesus upon His sufferings, was to declare and manifest the love, grace, and goodwill of God unto men that they might come to an acquaintance with Him, and to an acceptance before Him. He rejoiced greatly in doing this, because thereby He manifested and exalted the glory of God. He came to do the will of His Father, and thereby to set forth His glory.
The salvation of the sons to be brought to glory depended upon this work of His, and how much He sought that, His whole work declares. For their sake He came down from heaven, and was made flesh and dwelt among them, for their sake He did undergo all the miseries that the world could cast upon Him, for their sake He underwent the curse of the law, and wrestle with the displeasure and wrath of God against sin. Now after He had done all this for them, unless He had declared the name of God to them in the gospel, they could have had no benefit by it, for if they do not believe they cannot be saved. They could not of themselves have known anything of that name of God which is their life and salvation. His own glory depended upon His work of declaring the name of God. The gathering of His Church, the setting up of His kingdom, the establishment of His throne, the setting of the crown on His head, depend solely on His declaring the name of God in the preaching of the gospel.
Catechism Question 80
Q: What is forbidden in the eighth commandment?
A: The eighth commandment forbids whatsoever does or may unjustly hinder our own or our neighbor’s wealth or outward estate.
1 Timothy 5:8
8 But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.
“Prove it” Catechism Question 115
Q: In whose name should we pray?
A: Only in the name of Christ.
24 Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.