IV. SECTION. The second Branch, What Christ did by way of Representa∣tion of our persons: That phrase in one Body ex∣plained.
THe second Branch of this first head is, What Christ did by way of Representation of our persons, and how that conduceth to this mutuall Reconciliation of the Saints among themselves. This we have in that small ad∣ditionall which is found in the 16. verse, That he might re∣concile both unto God [IN ONE BODY,] by the Crosse having slayn the enmity. The meaning whereof is this, that he did collect, and gather together in one Body all the people of God, that is, did sustaine their persons, stood in their stead, as one common person in whom they were all met, re∣presenting them equally and alike unto God, and so recon∣ciled them to God in one body.* As you heard he bore their enmities in his flesh and so abolisht them: so withall He bore their persons, considered as one collective body, and under that consideration reconciled them to God.
And this superadds to the former consideration of being a Sacrifice for their enmities mutually, for that he might have been, and have performed it for each of their per∣sons, Page 50 considered singly and apart. But further we see Hee was pleased to gather them into one body in Him∣selfe.
If you aske me where and when this Representation of all the Saints was by Christ, more especially made, and when it was they were lookt at by God as one body; The text tells us, ON THE CROSSE. By which He thus re∣conciled us to God in one body.
I will not now insist on that which at first, to make my way cleare, I was so large upon: That that kind of reconcili∣ation of us, wrought by Christ for us on the Crosse, is here intended: to all which this may be added; That it was that Reconciliation which at once tooke in and comprehended, all both Jew and Gentile in all ages into one body; which was never yet since actually done, but therefore then was done in himselfe. That which is now onely left for clear∣ing my way, is the opening the import of those words [in one body,] which clause is that I take for my founda∣tion of this second Paragraph.
There is a question among interpreters, whether by this one body in the text be meant the Church onely, considered as one mysticall body in Christ; or onely the body and hu∣mane Nature of Jesus Christ Himselfe, hanging upon the Crosse: I would to reconcile both senses take in both, as con∣ducing to the reconciliation of us.
1. Supposing, (which is necessary,) Christs person, His humane nature, or (His Flesh v. 15.) to be the Ubi, the sub∣stratum, the meeting place, and Randezvouz of this other great body of the Elect, where this whole company ap∣peared, and was represented, so to be reconciled unto God. For indeed what the Apostle mentions here apart, and at distance each from other: His Flesh, v. 15. and Body, v. 16. these elsewhere he brings together, 1 Coll. 22. Having made peace IN THE BODY OF HIS FLESH through death.
Page 51 Which body as hanging on the Crosse was 2 cloathed upon when most naked with this other body, which He Himselfe tooke on Him to sustaine and represent, and to stand in their stead, even the whole body of His Elect: His body (personally His) becoming by representation one with that His other body, (mystically His.) In sum, in the body of Christ personall, as the body representing, the whole body of Christ mysticall, as the body represented, was met in one afore God, and unto God. And in that one body of Christ personall, were all these persons (thus represen∣ted,) reconciled unto God together, as in one body, by vertue of this Representation.