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A30249 Vindiciae legis, or, A vindication of the morall law and the covenants, from the errours of Papists, Arminians, Socinians, and more especially, Antinomians in XXX lectures, preached at Laurence-Jury, London / by Anthony Burgess ... Burgess, Anthony, d. 1664. 1647 (1647) Wing B5667; ESTC R21441 264,433 303

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Sapiens est cui res sapiunt pro ut sunt he is a wise man to whom things do taste and relish as they are divine and holy things as holy earthly things as earthly and fading then certainly by this Law of God there was true wisdome prescribed Other arguments Moses doth bring as The great authority God put upon the Law The great mercy in giving it to them rather then another Nation And the verse I have read belongs to that argument which proveth the dignity and glorious authority of the Law from the manner of delivering it Which Law he declareth to us by the name and title of a Covenant Now this take notice of that the word Covenant to omit other significations is taken sometimes syecdochially for part of the Covenant as it is here in these words The Doctrine I will insist upon is That the Law was delivered by God on Mount Sinai in a Covenant way Or The Law was a Covenant that God made with the people of Israel This will appeare in that it hath the name of a Covenant and the reall properties of a Covenant 1. The name of a Covenant 2 King 18. 12. Because they obeyed not the voyce of the Lord their God but transgressed his Covenant and all that Moses the servant of God commanded Deut 17. 2. If there be found any that hath wrought wickednesse in transgressing the Covenant which was the ten Commandements as appeareth ver 3. And more expresly 2 Chro. 6. 11. In it have I put the Arke wherein is the Covenant of the Lord that he made with the children of Israel Yea if we would speake exactly and strictly the books of Moses and the Prophets cannot be so well called the Old Covenant or Testament as this doctrine that was then delivered on Mount Sinai with all the administrations thereof as appeareth Heb 7. chap. 8. Even as when the Apostle saith 2 Cor. 3. 6. God hath made us able ministers of the New Testament he doth not meane the writings or books but the Gospel or Covenant of grace Take but one place more where the Law is called a Covenant and that is Jer. 11. 2 3 4. 2. In the next place you may see the reall properties of a Covenant which are a mutuall consent and stipulation on both sides See a full relation of this Exod 3 24. from the 3. v. to the 9 th The Apostle relateth this history Heb. 9. wherein learned Interpreters observe many difficulties but I shall not meddle with them In the words quoted out of Exodus you see these things which belong to a Covenant First there is God himselfe expressing his consent and willingnesse to be their God if they will keep such Commandements there and then delivered to them ver 3. Secondly you have the peoples full consent and ready willingnesse to obey them ver 3. ver 7. Thirdly because Covenants used to be written down for a memoriall unto posterity therefore we see Moses writing the precepts down in a book Fourthly because Covenants used to be confirmed by some outward visible signes especially by killing of beasts and offering them in sacrifice therefore we have this also done and halfe of the blood was sprinkled on the Altar to denote Gods entring into Covenant and the people also were sprinckled with blood to shew their voluntary covenanting Thus we have reall covenanting when the Law is given So also you may see this in effect Deut. 29. 10 11 12 13. where it's expresly said that they stood to enter into Covenant with God that he may establish them to be a people unto himself and that he may be a God unto them Again you have this clearly in Deut. 26. 17 18. where it is said Thou hast avouched the Lord this day to be thy God and to walke in his wayes And the Lord hath avouched thee this day to be his peculiar people So that it 's very plain the Law was given as a Covenant yea the Apostle cals it a Testament for howsoever some have disliked that distinction of the Old and New Testament especially as applied to the books writings of the holy Pen-men of Scripture thinking as Austin they may be better called the Old and New Instruments because they are authenticall and confirmed by sufficient witnesses As Tertullian cals the Bible Nostra digesta from the Lawyers and others called it Our Pandects from them also yet 1 Cor. 3. doth warrant such a distinction Only the question is how this Covenant can be called properly a Testament because Christ died not twice and there cannot be a Testament without the death of a Testator But the answer is that there was a typicall death of Christ in the sacrifices and that was ground enough to make the Covenant to be called a Testament Having proved it is a Covenant all the difficulty remaineth in declaring what Covenant it is for here is much difference of judgements even with the Learned and Orthodox and this doth arise from the different places of the Scripture which although they be not contrary one to another yet the weaknesse of our understandings is many times overmastered by some places Some as you have heard make it a Covenant of workes others a mixt Covenant some a subservient Covenant but I am perswaded to goe with those who hold it to be a Covenant of grace and indeed it is very easie to bring strong arguments for the affirmative but then there will be some difficulty to answer such places as are brought for the negative and if the affirmative prove true the dignity and excellency of the Law will appeare the more Now before I come to the arguments which induce me hereunto consider in what sense it may be explained that it is a Covenant of grace Some explaine it thus that it was indeed a Covenant of grace but the Jewes by their corrupt understanding made it a Covenant of workes and so opposed it unto Christ and therefore say they the Apostle argueth against the Law as making it to oppose the promises and grace not that it did so but only in regard of the Jewes corrupt minds who made an opposition where there was none This hath some truth in it but it is not full Some make the Law to be a Covenant of grace but very obscurely and therefore they hold the Gospel and the Law to be the same differing only as the acorne while it is in the huske and the oke when it 's branched out into a tall tree Now if this should be understood in a Popish sense as if the righteousnesse of the Law and the Gospel were all one in which sense the Papists speake of the old Law and the new it would be very dangerous and directly thwarting the Scripture Some explain it thus God say they had a primary or antecedent will in giving of the Law or a secondary and consequent His primary will was to hold out perfect and exact