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the bridegroom rejoiceth over the bride, so shall thy God rejoice over thee. Isaiah Ixii. 1-5. There needs no apology for citing the forementioned Scriptures, as they most expressly belong to the state of the church at the very time when that which is expressed in the words of our text shall be realized in her and upon her. It is then her beauty will be as the olive tree, and her smell as Lebanon. Christ is now, ever has been, and ever will be, the glory, beauty, and perfection of his church. And she has been, is, and ever will be, the glory of Christ. The prophet Isaiah, speaking of Christ, in his union and relation to his church, and of some out-breaking of his grace and glory towards her, says, In that day shall the branch of the Lord be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel. chap. iv, 2. Jeremiah, speaking of Christ says, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous branch, and a king' shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth. In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely : and this is his name whereby he shall be called, The Lord our Righteousness. Chap. xxiii, 5, 6. Again, speaking of the glory of the church in the latter day, we read these words-- In those days, and at that time, will I cause the branch of righteousness to grow up unto David; and he shall exe
cute judgment and righteousness in the land. In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely: and this is the name wherewith she shall be called, The Lord our Righteousness. Jer. xxxiii. 15, 16. All these passages refer to the state of the church in the latter day. The church enlarged, beautified, and adorned, will make a glorious figure in the world, so as to be an eternal excellency, the joy of many genera. tions. The Lord says, his Israel's beauty shall be as the olive tree. The olive tree is full of a fat substance, which produces plenty of oil. The Scripture speaks of the wild olive, and the cultivated olive. This tree is of a moderate height; it thrives best in a sunny and warm soil; its trunk is knotty ; its bark is smooth, and of an ash colour; its wood is solid and yellowish ; its leaves are oblong, and almost like those of the willow, of a dark green colour on the upper side, and a whitish shade below. In the month of June, it puts forth white flowers, growing in bunches each of one piece, and widening towards the top, and dividing into four parts. After this flower succeeds the fruit, which is oblong and plump. It is first green, then pale, and when quite ripe, becomes black. Within it is inclosed a hard stone, filled with oblong seeds. Olive leaves were emblems of peace. The olive leaf brought to Noah, by the dove, was such. The door and posts of the entrance into the Holy of Holies in Solomon's temple, and the posts of the door of the temple were of olive wood. The two cherubims which Solomon made for covering the ark, were of olive trees. See 1 Kings vi. 23. 31. 33. The prophet Zechariah had a vision of a golden candlestick, with its seven pipes and seven lamps, with a golden bowl upon the top thereof. He saw also two olive trees : these are styled the two anointed ones. To cast a little light on the same: observe that the candlestick was the symbol of the church; it was all of gold; by which was expressed its durability, purity, and excellency. From the bowl on the top of it, proceeded seven pipes; which conveyed the oil to the seven lamps, the flame of which illuminated its appearance. On each side of the bowl were seen the two olive trees, which emptied the golden oil out of themselves, for the supply of the golden candlestick. Read the fourth chapter of the prophet Zechariah. Christ is the true olive; he is the green olive tree; he is always flourishing ; he has all contained in the fat, oily, limpid juice, and rich substance, called oil. The olive tree, yields the best and principal oil: it was made use of in the tabernacle. The Lord said to Moses, thou shalt command the children of Israel, that they bring thee pure olive oil, beaten for the light, to cause the lamp to burn always. Exod. xxvii. 2. Christ is the antitype of the golden candlestick. The Holy Ghost is in Him, and rests upon Him,
in all his sevenfold gifts and graces. And the beauty of the church in the verse before us is thus expressed: His beauty shall be as the olive tree, always green, flourishing, and full of sap; always fair and yielding fruit, good for ointment, food, and light. This is the figure and symbol, by which the beauty and glory of the church are set forth in its enlargement in that period which is to succeed the present. His branches shall spreud, and his beauty shall be as the olive tree, and his smell as Lebanon. And thus I am brought to the last division of my text.
III. To take notice of the sweet savour of the church to others, which is a further increase and enlargement of the church's perfection. His beauty shall be as the olive tree, and his smell as Lebanon.
The whole perfection of the church, and every member of the same, is in Christ. She receives all her glory, beauty, excellence, and comeliness from him. She is what she is, as described in the words before us, through his comeliness put upon her, and no otherwise. One end and design of the account which is here given of her, is to exhibit the glory and greatness of her majestic appearance in the latter day; when being more immediately under the solar light and rays of the sun of everlasting righteousness, her glory will be more conspicuously seen. It is not that the saints then will be more glorious and complete in Christ's person, holiness, righteousness, and sacrifice, than they are now; yet they will shine forth, and reflect the influence and truth of this, beyond what the saints of God do now; because they will be so immediately under the anointings of the Holy Ghost, that effects, proportionate with this, will be produced in them, and manifested by them. It would be well for us to keep this in view. I have endeavoured to impress this on the mind, in going over this subject again and again, that it is not so much what the church is in Christ, is the design of these prophecies, as the outward state of the church, in the open view of others. Not but what she is in Christ by election, and her union, interest, salvation, state, and blessedness, in the person of God-man, her head, and husband; is in the knowledge of it the life of her soul, and the joy of her heart: and is the sole and alone foundation of all which relates to the outward glory of the visible church, in that more glorious state of it in this our world than hath hitherto been manifested. We who live Christ, and are admitted by grace to enjoy communion with him, and the Father in him, through the grace and power of the Holy Ghost, have in our own souls the essence of all the grace, which will ever be experienced by saints even at the close of time. I am speaking of inward communion with the Lord; in which it is that the Holy Ghost is most graciously