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Sermon XXII

Our sins already laid on Christ

Tobias Crisp

All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; and the LORD hath laid {or, made to meet,} on him the iniquity of us all.” {Is.53:6}

The last day, as you may remember, we took notice of the author of this grace of laying iniquity uponChrist. That it is the Lord’s own act; none but he laid it on him; Christ took not the office of priesthoodupon himself, but as he was called of God. The office of his priesthood was the bearing of sin; that wasthe prime business of the high priest to represent all the people, and to enter into the holy of holies tobear their sins before the Lord. “And no man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.” {Heb.5:4} Therefore the apostle saith expressly, the Lord spake thus, I have said, “thou art a priest forever” that was his call; and for the confirmation of it he established it by an oath, “the Lordhath sworn, thou art a priest forever.” {Heb.7:21} And if Christ himself takes not upon him to disposeof the sins of men, much less is it in the power of any mere creature. It is not in the power of anyrighteousness we do, though ever so complete, no nor of our faith, to lay iniquity upon Christ. The lordlays, Christ bears, and faith beholds this iniquity thus laid by him, and borne by Christ; and so the soulreceives comfort upon the apprehension of it. None but the Lord can possibly lay iniquity upon Christ,because none hath to do with the disposing of it but he. “Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, {saith David,} and doneevil in thy sight;” yet he had sinned against Uriah and his wife; but properly the sin was against God, asthat sin was a transgression of his law. If the debt be God’s, who hath power to dispose of it, either totake it off the principal, or transfer it to a surety, but he that is the creditor? What hath any man to dowith another man’s debt?

Again, none but the Lord can dispose of iniquity, because none hath so much interest in Christ as hehath; it is a burden of a heavy weight, and he must have great interest that can prevail with him to bearit. Though it is true, we, the sons of men partake of abundance of comfort in the discharge of sin byChrist; yet his primary intention in bearing it, was not the salvation of man, but the satisfaction of hisFather. “Lo, I come, to do thy will.” {Heb.10:9} “Jesus saith unto them, my meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.” {Jn.4:34} “I have glorified thee on the earth; I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.” {Jn.17:4} Still the eye of Christ ran upon the pleasuring of his Father; this is that which made him so hearty in bearing sin, “the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.” {Is.53:10}

Again, none could fit Christ to bear sin but the Lord, therefore none else could lay it on him; a body he must have, or he could not bear sin; the God-head cannot bear sin; “and a body,” saith Christ, “hast thou prepared me;” {Heb.10:5;} all the world could not prepare a fit body to bear sin for Christ; a body natural is but weak; and too weak to bear itself up under such a weight. A body there must be that is supernatural, steeled and supported; and this also is the mere work of the Lord. “Behold my servant, whom I uphold;” saith he, God must uphold him; “mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him.” “I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people.” {Is.42:1,6}

Finally, none but the Lord could requite Christ for such a service as this; it is fit he should have his pay for his pains; the Lord tells him plainly, that upon the terms of bearing iniquity, let him ask of him, and he shall receive the heathen for his inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for his possession. {Ps.2:8} Nay, he saith, because he was “obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name.” {Phil.2:8,9}

It should therefore serve to put the people of God upon the admiration of the great love of God, {seeing it is only the LORD that laid iniquity upon Christ,} to give unto him the praise of the glory of his grace. Oh, let nothing go away with that, seeing none but the Lord doth the thing!

And to this end, beloved, the Lord must open your eyes that you may see it; it is he alone that doth it; but till you see it, whatever you may think of yourselves, you will sacrifice to nets and drags instead of him; if righteousness seem to be the easing of burdens in spirit, then that shall, and will be exalted above measure; from whence proceed these strange expressions, oh, the omnipotency of fasting, prayer, and repentance! What is this but to give the glory of the Lord to our services, as if they discharged us of our sins, when it is he only that discharges us of them? But I must hasten.

There is another observable passage in these words, more observable indeed than heeded by most; and that is to be taken from the circumstance of time, when the Lord laid iniquity upon Christ; for the text saith, “the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.” Satan knows well enough of what great consequence this circumstance of time is, both to the manifestation of the glory of God’s grace, and to the establishment of the comforts of his people; and therefore he hath raised a foul dust to misguide poor wretches, that they may not lay hold upon it, and the comfort that will flow from it. The text saith not, the Lord doth, or will lay, iniquity on him; much less that the time is over, and he will not now do it.

Satan is very busy with tender, ignorant hearts, either to persuade them that the work is now a doing, or hereafter shall be done, but not yet done, or the time is over-slipped; it might have been done, if men had not neglected the opportunity; but now that it is too late; it is never to be done.

The last of these hath troubled the hearts of many people; whence come these expressions; I have neglected the day of my visitation, saith one; I had the opportunity, the presence of the Spirit of God; my fear is, that was the day of God’s grace to me, but I have let it slip; and now there is no more hope left for me; but, beloved, let the evident word of the Lord himself be your guide, and know, that everything that is spoken, contrary to the mind of the Lord revealed in it, is but the natural fruit of the father of lies, who is a liar from the beginning. The Lord hath laid iniquity upon Christ; hath he done it already, and is it now to be done? Nay, hath he done it, and doth he revoke it, and will not suffer it to be done? The point then briefly is this.

This gracious act of the Lord’s laying iniquity upon Christ is not now, or hereafter to be done, much less a thing he never wills to be done, but it is a thing he hath already done.

Every school-boy will be able to tell you, that this expression “hath laid” imports the time past, the word being in the past-perfect tense; it is not in the present tense, the Lord layeth; nor in the future tense, the Lord will lay; but in the past-perfect tense, the Lord hath done it; it is an act past. I remember what was said unto that resolute king; “let not him that girdeth on his harness boast himself as he that putteth it off.” {I Kg.20:11} Beloved, you know that when armies go out, there are tremblings of heart, what the success may be, till the fight be over; but when the victory is gotten, then there is joy, the thing is done. When a poor prisoner lies in prison condemned, though he have friends to beg his pardon; while that is in agitation, and not actually done, he is in suspense, between fear and hope, and restless in spirit; but when the act of grace is once past, and the king’s hand and seal to it, the thing is done, then his spirit comes to have rest; even so the rest of your spirits will lie in this, not that a thing is in writing; or that there are previous acts to be done to produce this act of laying iniquity upon Christ; but that the thing is dispatched to your hands before; you may see it at this instant done and finished; though the Lord in himself be unchangeable, yet our unbelieving hearts are suspicious of it, and we are ready to cry, “a bird in the hand, is worth two in the bush.” Now to condescend to the weakness of men, he is pleased, not that the bird should be in the bush, but in our hands; not that he should have his mercies within himself, but he passes them over, and gives the possession of them to us, that so we may be the securer in them.

I doubt not, beloved, but by this time, the truth is cleared to you, and that you find abundance of establishment in it so cleared; therefore we shall endeavour to let you know {as fully as possibly we may} when it was, that the Lord laid iniquity upon Christ.

But before we fall upon that particular, there is one caution I shall recommend to your consideration, as very necessary to be considered, for the avoiding of confusion; which is this, that you carefully distinguish between the Lord’s sole and only act of laying iniquity upon Christ, and the believer’s act of applying this grace. We are now upon the former consideration, the Lord’s sole and only act without the creature, in laying iniquity upon Christ.

I find, beloved, that too many poor wretches, out of ignorance, not understanding distinctly the course of God’s proceedings with men, are apt to confound God’s sole act of laying, and the believer’s act of applying together, as if they were both one; as if our sins were laid upon Christ, only when we believe; and as if that were the only thing, whereby they are laid upon him; but it is certain, that these are distinct acts. I hope I shall not need to trouble myself, or you, much, to make it appear that they are; the agent acting, and the instrument manifesting, are different. Though the Lord gives men to believe; yet the putting forth of that act is man’s, by the power of the Lord; as for the laying of iniquity itself upon Christ, this is solely the Lord’s own act; our application doth but introduce the knowledge of that which the Lord hath done before, and so we come to have the comfort. Now it is true, indeed, that in respect of the application of this grace to ourselves, the laying of iniquity upon Christ, may be considered either present or future; that is, at this present instant, a person may believe this grace of God, and so here is now an application of it; and possibly one, that doth not for the present believe, and apply it to himself, may believe, and in that respect, the applying it, may be future; but for the act itself, of laying iniquity upon Christ, that is the Lord’s, and is neither present, nor future, but was before, and is already past and gone.

The truth is, it is not possible that any person can truly believe that his iniquities are laid upon Christ, except there be a previous act of the Lord’s laying them on him; as the Lord’s act of laying must go before our act of applying it to ourselves. It is not possible for any man to act anything, but there must be an object in being, about which it is conversant. Suppose a man believes that his sins are laid upon Christ, I would fain know, whether his believing be true or false; if he believe indeed, he hath a foundation for this faith of his, and what is that? He hath a grant from the Lord which is the very being of his faith; a grant, I say, he finds out, that is a stirring up of his believing; now suppose I am to believe the forgiveness of my sins, what must be the ground of this my believing? The Lord must make his grant to me, and finding that, I have ground to believe it; then whenever this grant was made, the thing that I am to believe, was done in respect of God’s act; now we can find no grant, but as the Lord reveals the same in the word of his grace to us; when, therefore, that which is the foundation of my faith was made, then the act of God was made to me, which I apply to myself.

If the Lord’s laying iniquity upon Christ, has being, at the same instant men believe, then the grant which men believe, hath its first being then; so all grants, upon which men are to believe, must be new and immediate revelations, or they must be founded in the word of grace; if they be founded in that, then they were there before we believed; and if they were there before we believed, then the Lord, for his part, had passed over all that he intends to pass over. Doth he pass over anything anew to men, besides what is in the word of grace? Then that must be by a new revelation; and who can resolve of that?

The word, and that alone, is sufficient to make the man of God perfect, and fit for every good work. The mind of God is wholly contained in this word; and therefore it must needs be a mistake in the minds of people, that God then begins to pass over such an act to them, that their iniquity is laid upon Christ, upon their believing; I say, believing follows, and gathers its ground from what God has done already.

I have heard some argue, that God lays iniquity upon Christ, just then when men believe; because the act, and the object about which it is conversant, are relatives, and therefore are in nature together; and are both as the Son and the Father; the Father is no sooner a Father, but the Son is a Son.

But, beloved, here is a mistake; it is not faith that gives being to this act, or grant, that our iniquities should be laid upon Christ, it is the Lord alone that gives being to it, and it is his act; so that it is true, iniquity is not laid upon Christ, till he lays it; but it follows not, that it was not laid upon him, till our act of believing goes along with it; because that doth not give being to it, but is only a manifestation of that, which was before. This then is carefully to be premised, and observed; namely, the difference between the Lord’s act of laying iniquity upon Christ, and the act of a believer, to apply that grace; concerning the latter, it is present to some, and future to others as men believe; but the act of laying iniquity upon Christ is solely the Lord’s, and was done before, and is not to be done.

Now let us come to consider, when the Lord laid iniquity upon Christ; he hath done it, it is past; but when did he do it, will you say? For the opening of this truth, there are some specialties to be considered, as, {1} that the Lord laid iniquities upon Christ, by way of obligation; {2} by way of execution; {3} by way of his own application thereof to his people; for, as you shall hear, we must distinguish between God’s application of this grace, and their application of it; this we shall speak to afterwards.

We come now to consider, when the Lord laid iniquities upon Christ, and for that you must know: 1. That the Lord laid them upon Christ, by way of obligation; I mean thus, he did then lay iniquity upon Christ, when he obliged himself to it. You know when a man once enters into bond, though peradventure the day of payment may be some months, or years, after the bond is sealed; yet when he enters into bond, he delivers that as his act and deed; at the first instant of the sealing of the bond, then is the thing done; other specialties, it may be, are cancelled, and the whole debt remains according to the tenor of the bond. So when the Lord entered into bond, he tied himself to lay iniquity upon Christ; then was his act and deed; then were all the specialties cancelled, as they were charged upon us; and when was that? It was from all eternity; I say, God tied himself irrevocably then to lay iniquity upon Christ, even from all eternity; then he did it in his own determinate counsel; I mean, when in his own council, he determined it should be done. God’s determination and resolution, that Christ should bear the sins of men, were the act of God’s laying them upon him; and though, unhappily to this church, the everlasting decree, and the doctrine of God’s election of men, hath been, and is still, suppressed as a dangerous truth; yet you must know beloved, that the foundation of all the gracious acts of God, was laid in this decree of election; the Lord sat down, as a man may speak with reverence, by himself, and drew out a draught of all the particular passages, especially concerning his own people, how he would order and dispose everything in its season; and, in this eternal council, he set down his fiat, that it should be so; and this fiat of the Lord, from all eternity, did make the thing itself an irrevocable act. You know, that the royal assent makes an act, and it is a real statute; councils having contrived before, that which it yields unto. Now it may be, that that which royal assent makes an act, may not be of present use; that is, people may not have present occasion of such an act; suppose it be an act of grace; yet notwithstanding, from the first instant of that assent, it hath as much force in it, as when occasion of use cometh, which is derived from it; so also the act of laying of iniquity upon Christ, that, that gives being to it, as an act, and so gives life to it, is the royal assent of God. When God first set his assent that iniquity should be borne by Christ, this made it an act as firm, good, and true, as ever will be. When a man hath occasion to make use of a statute of grace, there is no addition of force, added to it, when it is sued out for use; it hath no more virtue in itself, than at the first instant, when the royal assent was put to it; and when we, in time, by the grace of the Lord, make application of this, that our iniquities are laid upon Christ; this application of ours, gives not any being at all unto the thing; the grant, that had as much strength and force in it; at the first assenting to it, as it hath when it is applied, or as ever it will have. Now beloved, this is certain, that the royal assent is a binding act, even from the very instant of it. Kings, when they give it to an act of grace, are not only bound to make it good, when any person sues it out, but they themselves are bound at that instant, when they passed it, that they cannot revoke it. The Lord, it is true, was free in himself how to dispose of the sins of men; but when he had contrived for his own glory’s sake, and his people’s good, that their iniquities should be transacted to Christ, this counsel, though secret within his own breast, obliged him forever to the thing. The Lord is unchangeable. “I am God, and change not, therefore ye sons of Jacob, are not consumed.” {Mal.3:6} Now beloved, should there be any time in which the Lord should not lay iniquity upon Christ, after his former assent to it, how could he be unchangeable? He did assent then, now he will not; is not this changeableness? So that the whole truth, faithfulness, and uprightness of God, is tied to make good the everlasting laying of iniquity upon Christ, by virtue of this act of his own assent to it.

2. As there was a secret obligation upon God, which was from all eternity, to lay iniquity upon Christ; so there is a public and manifest tie upon him, when he openly, in the face of his people, and to them binds himself even to their apprehensions, that they see that he is obliged to it; then did the Lord lay the iniquity of his people upon Christ openly, when he did openly bind himself by covenant to do it; and that he did from the first moment they were in any transgression whatsoever. When Adam, as a common person, had sinned for himself and his whole posterity, the Lord bound himself by promise and covenant, to secure his people from such transgression by his Son Christ. “I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; {speaking to the serpent of the woman; that is, Eve;} it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.” {Gen.3:15} As if he had said, thou hast got a great catch by getting the sons of men under thy clutches, as thy prey; thou hast bruised his heel by reason of transgression; but the seed of the woman shall break thine head; the head, that is the seat of principality; therefore, they that have the principality are called heads in scripture. Now, saith the text, “he shall break thine head;” that is, that, wherein consisteth thy chiefest strength, shall be bruised and broken to pieces; because that, wherein the strength or headship lieth, shall be taken away from thee; the seed of the woman shall take away sin, wherein the headship of Satan lieth. Now, as soon as the Lord had published this to men, he was under bond, that iniquity should be borne by Christ.

Now you are not to conceive that this publication of God’s grace is the first act of it by him, he having acted it in his councils long before; therefore the apostles being met together, on occasion of persecution, began to pray, and in prayer had this clause, they have done {speaking of their cruelty to Christ} “to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel determined before to be done.” {Acts 4:28} By which it plainly appears, that the act is not passed really in being in the publication of it; which is but an issue flowing from this first spring, from whence it derived its original; namely, the determinate council of the Lord. It was upon record in heaven before; now, upon occasion, the record is taken out and published. As I said before, it is royal assent, which gives being to an act of grace; it is not the publication of it in print, and making it known to the world, that gives being to it a jot; indeed that gives people the comfort of it, but royal assent gives being to the thing; publication doth not give so much as confirmation to it; only it gives settlement of spirit to the staggering hearts of people, that know not what to do, nor where to set the sole of their feet for rest, till they have this grace published; and then venture themselves upon it when published.

Concerning the laying of iniquity upon Christ, he doth not make a new act; all that he doth is but the publication and manifestation of it; not that the Lord is bound now, and not before, but that we might know he is bound, and have the stronger consolation. In Eph.1:4, the apostle speaks expressly and fully touching God’s eternal act, that gives being to this grace of laying iniquity upon Christ; and also, that, by which persons reap the fruit of it, when they come to know it; he saith, “according as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world,” and afterwards he tells us, this reaches to the “forgiveness of our sins.” There you shall find, that though the Lord was pleased to publish this grace, concerning the laying of iniquities on Christ, yet it hath not its beginning then, but “before the foundation of the world was laid.” In brief, you must know, that though sin in creatures was not actually in being from all eternity; nay, though Christ, as having a body prepared, was not himself in being from eternity; yet the omnipresent eye of God, that forecasts things with himself, that afterwards should come to pass, had every particular person in his thoughts from all eternity, that should come in all after time, and before him they appeared, as if they had been actually existing then; and he had not only their persons, but in this omnipresent eye of his, he had every such transgression, that by every such person as his own, should from the first to the last of their being, be committed; he had all this at once in his eye. And having this platform before him, as if all were then in being, he sets down his own act of royal assent, that for every such transgression that should be committed at such and such a time, by such and such persons, he would accept of Christ whom he would fit to bear their transgressions; and, that from eternity to eternity, the Lord reckons all things as he had then and there set them down. We actually commit sin today, yesterday, and so shall again tomorrow; in the eternal councils of God, the very sin of this day, of yesterday, and tomorrow, were all open in the eyes of God; the Lord, from all eternity, looking upon these transgressions, assented to this, that Christ, for whom he would prepare a body, should indeed, in time, actually bear them all; but, in God’s own account they must be reckoned as borne from all eternity by Christ, by way of obligation. Christ “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” {Rev.13:8} Thus you see how the Lord, by way of obligation, lays the iniquities of his people upon Christ, and when he did thus lay them on him.

2. The Lord did lay the iniquities of his people upon Christ by way of execution; I mean thus, he laid iniquity upon him, as he did, in time, serve the execution upon him; as I told you before, a man makes himself actually a debtor, when he first enters into bond, and he goeth all that time for a debtor, from the sealing of the bond; but the debt is properly laid upon him when an execution is served upon him, and he is caused to make good the bond, and pay the debt; now is he actually called to account. The Lord, from all eternity, reckoned Christ to be the bearer of the transgression of his people; but in time he served the execution upon him.

Now it would be questioned when it was, that the Lord did this; that is, when he actually and really charged sin upon him?

For the understanding of this, you must know that there is a twofold serving the execution upon Christ; for it may be considered either virtual, or actual, and real. The execution is served upon Christ in the virtue of it, from the first instant that ever there was a transgression committed; and not only when first committed, and from thence to the time of his suffering, but also afterwards, from the time he suffered, to the end of the world. You must of necessity admit of this distinction between the virtual and actual serving of the execution upon Christ; and the ground of it is this, that though the Lord took Christ for paymaster for all the sins in the world that the elect would be guilty of; yet he was pleased to give him a long day of payment; the debt indeed run on from the fall of Adam, and so continued, and will continue to the end of the world; but Christ was not to come into the world till the fulness of time. “But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.” {Gal.4:4,5} Therefore, it must follow, that either there could be no discharge from the time of the first commission of sin, till Christ appeared in the flesh; or, that before the actual payment that Christ made, there was the virtue of having iniquity upon him; by which there was a discharge given before he had actually paid the debt.

To clear the point a little to you, consider, a man sends his son to the university, to such a tutor, who knows he is a rich man, and therefore, he saith, I will agree with you thus; I will teach your son so many years, and, at three years' end, you shall pay all the arrear for the time past; and whatsoever it will come to for three years more. Now the father, according to the agreement made, comes at one time, and reckons for all that is past for the tutorage of his son, and lays down that all at once; and, for the time to come, saith he, there is so much more, I will pay all them too, and make but one payment of all. So it is with Christ, he takes upon himself to discharge all the transgressions of those to whom it is given to believe; the Lord takes Christ for it, he knows he is one that is mighty, and is contented therefore to lay his help upon him; now the time runs on from the first sin committed, till the fulness of time that he comes; here is no payment all this while, no not of a farthing; yet God still discharges men of their sins; he discharged Abraham, Isaac, and David, and all the rest of the Fathers; and blessed they were in that their iniquities were forgiven, and their sins were covered. “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.” {Ps.32:1} Here God acquits these believers under the Old Testament, but where is the payment? All this while he hath no satisfaction yet; why, he depends on Christ for satisfaction when the day of payment comes; and so satisfaction is made virtually before it be done by Christ actually; and so for after-times; Christ came in the fulness of time, and reckoned with the Father, and he hath so much of him for all that is past, and as much for after-times to the end of the world; saith Christ to the Father, here is so much for every one of mine, that they have run out for the time that is past; and here is so much for every one of them that shall come after; they will commit so many sins in time to come; here is so much for all that they shall commit.

Now there was a pitched time wherein God served execution actually upon him; and that was when God forsook this Son of his; when he called him forth, and charged sin upon him, and laid load upon load on him, as the desert of transgressions.1 Beloved, you know what our Saviour saith himself, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” Now was the execution served, and God charged the payment upon him, when he said, I am heavy unto death; Father, “if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.” Here was the time of payment, and of satisfying God. This was the very time of the end of seventy weeks, wherein there was an end put to sin, and the finishing of transgression; and you must know this, beloved, that, in this laying iniquity upon Christ by way of execution, there was the matter of the greatest trust in the world, between God the Father and his Son Christ. It had been a toilsome thing to Christ to pay every debt, one after another, as it was taken up; and therefore, to save all this trouble, God was contented all should be paid at once; and likewise that Christ should do all in equality of time; not pay all at first, nor at last, but in the middle time; as if a man were to take up wares at several times, some at the beginning of the year, and some at the end of it, and pay all his money at the middle of it; so was it between God and his Son; something was to be paid at the beginning of the world; and something at the end of it; now to make an equality, Christ pays all at the middle time, or some good time before the end; and God is content to trust him from the beginning until the fulness of time; and he did so trust him, that he discharged all the sins of the elect before payment, as if already done. At the fulness of time, Christ comes and pays all for the time past, and so dischargeth that trust of God the Father upon him; and moreover pays to the full for all the sins that should be committed afterwards; so that now the Son trusts the Father, that he will reckon right with him, and deal justly with him. The price is fully paid into the hands of the Father, for all the elect to the end of the world, at that instant that Christ suffered; yet the value of this price is to be made out many hundreds of years after; wherein the Father is to give out unto man the worth of that Christ paid, even to the end of the world, as if he had not been paid before.

So that, in brief, look upon the execution, or rather serving of the execution, that is, the actual laying iniquity upon Christ; this was done at that instant when he was upon the cross, and God nailed the sins of men to it; and from that time there was not one sin to be reckoned either to believers, who are the members of Christ, or to himself; he having then made perfect satisfaction, and upon it given out to the world, “it is finished.” What was finished? The payment of the price so long looked for. The utmost farthing is now laid down, therefore the prophet Isaiah, in his 53rd chapter, saith expressly, that when the Lord beheld the travail of his soul, he was then satisfied; when the work of the Lord was in the hand of Christ; that is, when he was actually managing the business of bearing the weight of sin; then the pleasure of the Lord prospered on him; then the work went on with such success in his hand, that it prospered; then came this issue of his labour, that he obtained his Father’s pleasure that he aimed at; when the thing comes into the hands of Christ, then the pleasure of the Lord goeth on.

There yet remains one thing very considerable, and that is the application of this grace to particular persons, and the time when the Lord comes to this man, and to that woman, and calls out persons particularly, and applies it to them, as the grace of this person individually, “thy iniquity is laid upon Christ.” This requires more time to open it, than now we have; and therefore in the afternoon we shall have opportunity elsewhere.

1 This is charged as an error by D. W. in his Gospel-Truth, &c. pg. 28, that the time when our sins were actually laid on Christ was when he was nailed to the cross; but the Doctor does not say, that this was the first time sin was charged upon him, and he bore it; for he after observes, that God charged it upon him in the garden, when he was heavy unto death, and said, “if it be possible let this cup pass from me;” though, when he was offered upon the cross as a sacrifice for sin, was more properly and precisely the time when sin was charged and laid upon him, and he bore it. The apostle says, that “Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many,” Heb.9:28; so that it was when he was offered up, that sin was laid upon him, and he bore it; yea, he was offered up, that it might be done, and appear to be done. The apostle Peter is still more express for this; “who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree;” I Pet.2:24; hence it appears that it was upon the cross that sin was charged, and the load was laid, and there borne. Gill.