1. By way of Admiration.* See what a won∣derful person Jesus Christ is! Behold the Son of Man, or this spiritual Ladder that reacheth from Earth to Heaven, behold it with Admiration! Who would have thought of such away to Hea∣ven? Who, but infinite Wisdom, could have found out such a way to the Father? What Work-man but the eternal God, could make such Page 26 a Ladder? The Father is said to be above it, or on the top of it, to denote this way he Pre∣pared, and only by this way we must go to him, if ever we come to Heaven. Christ is God and Man, in One Person, Heaven and Earth meet together in him; he brings God to us, and car∣ries us up to God, God is reconciled to us in him, and we are reconciled to God by him.
2. Be exhorted to get up on this Ladder: If ever you think to see the Father, he is above it, as the end of our Journey, as our Hope and Reward; he calls upon you Sinners to Ad∣venture up this Ladder; to believe in his Son: He is above it to direct you, uphold you, and encourage you, therefore fear not; nay, he is above it, declaring himself in Covenant with all that come to him by Jesus Christ, and to be their God;*I am the Lord God, of Abraham, &c. This he spake to Jacob, as standing above it, or on the top of this Ladder.
3. Bless God for Christ, for his devising of such a way to raise us up, who were sunk so low, and had no strength, no skill, no helper, none that could bring us to God, nor find out a way to save our Souls, but God himself only, therefore he saith, Deliver him from going down into the Pit,*I have found a Ransom.
*Reproof.] This may be also for Reprehension to divers sorts of Persons,
1. To such that deny the D••ty, or God-head of Jesus Christ: If he be no more than a meer Man, the Ladder is too short to reach up to Heaven: He could not reach so high as to sa∣tisfy divine Justice, or to bring us to God, it being through the worth and dignity of his Per∣son, who being an infinite Person, or God over all, there was an infinite Worth and Merit in his Sufferings and Obedience. True, he might have Page 27 saved himself, (being Perfect, never having Sinned, nor broke God's Law,) tho' he had been but a meer Man; but it is from his being God as well as Man. Substituted in our stead, and standing in our Law-place as our great Head and •pon∣ser, •• that gave such Worth and Merit for us by his Obedience, and suffering to the Law and Justice of God. Moreover, how else also could he have overcome Death, the Devil, and all our Enemies, and have raised himself from the Dead? Death would have kept him under it's Power, and he had never came out of the Grave to as∣cend so high as Heaven to raise us thither.
2. It Reprehends all such also, who seek by a∣ny other way or means to go to Heaven:* We have new Babel-builders, or Work-mongers that think to climb up to Heaven by their own Works, by their own Faith, and sincere Obedience: And others by the Light within; which is but a branch of the First-covenant, or law of God, writ in the Heart;* and if there had been a Law that could have given Life, or raised us up to Heaven, verily, Righteousness had been by the Law;* But then, (as the Apostle saith) Christ is dead in vain.
Examin.] Try your selves,* by what you have heard, whether you have ascended on this Lad∣der, yea, or nay;
1. Were you ever brought to the Foot of Christ? Did you ever see your lost Conditi∣on in the first Adam, and that there is no o∣ther way to be Saved, but by the Lord Jesus?
2. Are you at the lowest part of the Lad∣der, and there rest; or are you got up towards the top thereof? There is no resting, no stay to be made when you first ascend, or first be∣lieve in Christ, or on any attainment of Grace, but you must mount up, or ascend up higher, Page 28from Faith to Faith;* have you stept up on the Roand of Obedience? have you took Christ's yoke upon you? [this seems too hard a step for some to take:] are you got above the Earth in your Affections? doth the Earth, and the things thereof, grow less and less every day in your sight? as in a natural respect it doth to him that soars very high, or climbs upon a Lad∣der, to the very Clouds. Are you willing to leave Earth, to leave this World, to go to Hea∣ven?*Paul longed to be dissolved, and to be with Christ: He pressed towards the mark. Do you dwell in Communion with God?
•las! many love to be below, they like those lower Regions best: See how it is with you; but no more at this time.