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BY REV. C. SIMEO, M. A.
2 Sam. xxiii. 5. Although my ho7ise be not so ivith God, yet
he hath made iv'iih me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all
things and sure : for this is all my salvation, and all my
I all the trials and troubles of life, religion alone
can afford us any effectual support. To this the
saints in all ages have fled for refuge, and in this
they have found all the consolation they could desire.
The latter days of David were a continual scene of
domestic sorrows. The defilement of Tamar by her
brother Amnon, the murder of Amnon by his brother
Absalom, the rebellion and untimely death of Absa-
lom, and the conspiracy and consequent destruction
of Adonijah, all embittered his life : and God had
foretold, that such afflictions should await him, as a
punishment for the horrible sins he had committed
in the matter of Uriah. David however was not
without his consolations. Though he could not have
the happiness of seeing his house walking in the
ways of God, yet he had good reason to believe
that God had accepted him ; and in the view of the
covenant which God had made with him, he could
not but rejoice. We do not apprehend that this
covenant related merely to the succession of his
posterity upon the throne of Israel, or even to the
advent of the Messiah from his loins : it can be no
other than that covenant which God made with his
own Son, and with us in him ; for no other covenant
corresponds with the description here given of it,
nor could David speak of any other as all his salva-
tion and all his desire. That covenant relates to the
salvation of a ruined world by the blood and righte-
ousness of the Lord Jesus.
The representation which David here gives us of
it will lead us to shew,
I. The excellence of this covenant —
This is set forth in a striking view in the words
before us. We notice,
218.] THE COVEAT OF GRACE. C33
1. Its duration —
[Long before man had fallen, God, who foresaw his fall,
devised a plan for his recovery : and in this plan his co-equal,
CO- eternal Son concurred : " The coiuicil of peace was between
them both," savs the Prophet''. To this St. Paul alludes, when
he says, that he was " in hope of eternal life, which God had
promised before the world bcgan\" To whom could that pro-
mise be made, but unto the Lord Jesus Christ, as the Represen-
tative of his Church and people ? Some Divines have called
this the covenant of Redemption, as contra-distinguished to the
covenant of Grace; the one being made with Christ only, and
the other with man. But this appears not founded m Scripture.
There is one covenant only ; and that was made with Christ
personally, &x\^ feeder ally : as made with him personally, it
promised him a seed, if he would lay down his lite for ihem-^ ;
and as made with h\m feeder ally, it promised salvation to a!
who should believe in him, and become members ot his mystical
ow this covenant is "everlasting;" it has existed from the
beeinninff, and shall exist to all eternity. o human being ever
ha! been saved but by virtue of it ; nor shall any child of man e^^^
be admitted into heaven, but agreeably to its provisions. VVe
sav not that no person ever has been, or shall be saved without
a distinct acquaintance with it: for we believe that many hea-
thens who never heard of it, and millions of children who have
been incapable of understanding any thing about it, have been
saved: but not a single soul has ever been accepted of God the
Fathe;, but as redeemed by the blood of his only-begotten Son
And perhaps we may say, that this circumstance gives to the
glorified saints an advantage over angels themselves : for angels
though confirmed, we trust, in their happiness by the po^ve ot
God do not hold that happiness by so sure a tenure as the saints
hold theirs: they cannot boast of holding it by the P-nnse and
oath of Jehovah ; thev cannot shew a covenant securing to them
^e ev r asting possession of their inheritance, and that covenan
Confirmed and%atified with the blood of God's only dear Son •
but we can refer to such a covenant, as the sure ground of all our
expecta'ons, and as the pledge that nothing shall ever separate
us from the enjoyment of our God^.J
2. Its fulness — . „ rvu
fit may truly be said to be " ordered in all things 1 here
is not^'LTtCnglhat can conduce to our happiness e.Ui. n. is
ir:r::L::^^^^o:r .a ale therem adjusted for^o.
^Zech.vi. 13. ^Tit.i.2. Msai.liii. 10,11.
-Gal. iii. 16,17. * 2 Cor. 1.20. .
^4 2 SAMUEL, XXIII. 5. [218.
good. All earthly things are secured to us, as far as they are
necessary'; and even afflictions themselves are promised, as the
appointed means of fitting us for the realms of bliss". What-
ever grace we stand in need of, it shall be given at such times,
and in such a measure, as shall most display the glory of God.
It is true that God requires of' vs many things, as repentance,
faith, and holiness ; but it is equally true that he promises all
these things to us: he has " exalted his own Son to give us
repentance'';" he also gives us to believe in Christ'; and he
promises that he will, by the influence of his Spirit, cmtse us to
walk in his statutes, and to keep his judgments and do them''.
We cannot place ourselves in any situation wherein God has not
given us promises, '• exceeding great and precious promises,
suited to our necessities, and commensurate with our wants : nor
is so small a thing as the falling of a hair of our head left to
chance ; it is all ordered by unerring wisdom : and though there
may be some events which, separately and distinctly considered,
may be regarded as evil, yet, collectively taken in all their bear-
ings, they shall " all work together for our eternal good'."]
3. Its certainty —
[It is '' sure" to every one who trusts in it. In this it
differs widely from the covenant of works \vhich was made with
man in innocence : for tliat depending on the fidelity of the
creature, was violated, and annulled : whereas this, depending
altogether on the fidelity of God, who undertakes to work in us
all that he requires of us, and who engages not only not to
depart from us, but not to suffer us to depart from him "', shall
never fail in any one particular : " The mountains may depart and
the hills be removed, but the covenant of my peace shall not be
removed, saith the Lord that hath mercy on us"." True it is
thatj as under the Jewish dispensation many were not stedfast in
that covenant, which v/as a mixed, and national covenant, so
many who profess religion do really " make shipwreck of the
faith":" but they have never truly embraced the covenant of
which we are speaking ; they have embraced it only in a partial
way, looking for its blessings without duly considering its obli-
gations : they have been more intent on salvation from punish-
ment, than salvation from sin. *^ Had they been really of us,"
says the Apostle, '* they would no doubt have continued with us^."
" The foundation of God standeth sure : the Lord knoweth
them that are his. But let every one tliat nameth the name of
Christ depart from iniquity i." This being our indispensable
'Matt. vi. 33. ^Jer. xxx. 11, "Acts v. 31.
» Phil. i. 29. '' Ezek. xxxvi. 25 — 27.
' Rom. viii. 28. "" Jer. xxxii. 40. ° Isai. liv. 9, 10.
1 Tim. i. 19. "^ 1 John ii, I9.
1 2 Tim. ii. 19. K«/ should here be translated but. Compare 1 Cor.
xii. 5. & xvi. 12. & 2 Tim. iii. 11. in the Greek.
218.] THE COVEAT OF GRACE. 635
duty, God promises and engages, " that sin shall not liave do-
minion over us, because we are not under the law, but under
grace"":" and we know that " He is faithful who hath called us,
who also will do it*:" and this very circumstance of its being
an article in God's covenant, a blessing to be gratuitously con-
ferred by him, and freely received by us, this, I say, it is, which
makes " the promise sure to all the seed'."]
When once we view this covenant aright we shall
11. The resfard which it deserves —
We should not regard it merely as an object of
curious research, or even of grateful admiration; but
should make it,
1 . The ground of all our hopes —
[Every other method of acceptance should be renounced;.
and this should be deliberately and cordially embraced "
We should contemplate every offer of mercy, every conununication
of grace, every mean of salvation as originating in the eternal
counsels of Heaven : every thing should be traced up to the love
of God the Father, and to the plans arranged by the sacred Three,
for the magnifying of the divine perfections in the salvation of
man Even the atonement itself must be considered as
deriving all its efficacy from this covenant : for, if God the Father
had not consented to accept his Son as a surety for us, and to
regard his death as an atonement for our sin, however honoura-
ble to Christ his mediation for us might be, it would not have
been available for our salvation. We sliould get such a distinct
view of this covenant as David had; of its duration, (from ever-
lasthig to everlasting;) its fulness, its certainty ; and then should
say of it as he did, " This is all my salvation;" except in /Aw,
I iiave no more hope than the fallen angels : but through the
provision which this has made for me, 1 scarcely envy the angels
who never fell : for '' I know in whom I have believed, that He is
able to keep that which I have connnitted to him^:" and " I am
confident that he who hath begun a good work in mc will per-
form it until the day of Christ^."]
2. The source of all our joys —
[Whatever comforts we may possess in this world, we should
derive our chief happiness from this: this should be "all our
desire," or, as the word imports, all our deligh/ To this
^ Rom. vi, 14.
' 1 Thess. V. 23, 24. Mark the connexion of these two verses.
* Rom. iv. l6. u »i
" 2 Tim. i. p. The two members of this sentence may be greatly
enlarged. ' 2 Tim. iv. 8. " 2 Tim. i. 12.
636 1 SAMUEL, XXIII. 15 — 17. [219.
also we should have recourse in every season of affliction. David
betook himself to it under all his domestic troubles, and in the
near prospect of eternity. " His house, alas ! was not so with
God," as he could wish. And how many are there who have great
trials in their families ! some from their unkindness, and others
from their removal by death^ Let every one that is so cir-
cumstanced learn from David where to flee for comfort : let him
contemplate the riches of divine grace as exhibited in this cove-
nant, and the blessedness of having an interest in it, and he will
soon forget his sorrows, and have a heart overflowing with
the most exalted joy If, in addition to other troubles, we
are lying upon the bed of death, we may well, like David, seek
comfort in this covenant, and make " the last words of David*"
our last words also. What can so efl^ectually remove the sting of
death, as to behold a covenant- God in Christ Jesus, engaged to
*^ keep him unto the end," and to receive him to an everlasting
enjoyment of his presence and glory? Study then the
wonders of this covenant, that they may be familiar to your minds
in a time of health; and so shall they fill you with unutterable
peace and joy, when every other refuge shall fail, and your soul
be summoned into the presence of its God.]
* This may be amplified so as to apply to many cases which may
greatly interest the feelings of an audience.
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