Francis Roberts

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Christ's Mediatorial Intercession

That Jesus Christ is our Intercessor, interceding with God for his People is evident two ways: namely, First. By the Title of Advocate given to him. "And if any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; And he is the Propitiation for our sins." 1 John 2:1,2. Christ's Person is righteous; His Priestly office is to be our Propitiation, by way of Satisfaction; and our Advocate by way of Intercession. Advocate, signifies also a Comforter, and so its translated when ascribed to the Holy Ghost. John 14:16, 17, 26 & 16:7. But learned men are of opinion, that it most properly and primarily signifies, an Advocate. An Advocate, in common acceptation, were friends of guilty persons called in to entreat for them; and differed from the Patron or Orator that managed their Cause. More strictly it imports an Officer at Law, an Advocate, Attorney, &c., that appears and answers in Court for a man that is there accused, and pleads his cause. Thus Jesus Christ is our Advocate by Office, appointed of God, to appear for us, answer for us, plead and intercede for us; when the Justice or Law of God shall object anything against us for our sins; or when Satan, who is our Court-adversary, {1 Pet. 5:8, with Math.5:25,} the old accuser of the brethren, Rev. 12:10. Secondly. Jesus Christ is our Intercessor, by the Acts of intercession ascribed to Him. He prayed on earth for them that did believe, or should believe. John 17:9,20. He now appears in the presence of God for us. Heb.9:24. He ever lives to make Intercession for us, Heb.7:25. He is at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Rom.8:34. The Greek word 'maketh intercession,' properly signifies one that attains the mark intended by darts or other weapons cast, &c., and thence metaphorically it denotes, to impetrate, to obtain what we desire, &c. Thus Christ attains exactly, impetrates and obtains fully, for us from the Father, whatsoever he desires. --- The Execution of Christ's Intercession. Christ Executes his Priestly Intercession - First: Inceptively, on Earth, in his State of Humiliation, by Prayers for all and singularly his elect people, with strong cries and tears and in such posture or gesture, as lifting up his eyes, kneeling down, prostrating himself or falling to the ground, &c., as was suitable to his Humiliation. John 17:9,20, Luke 22:31,32, Heb.5:7, John 17:2, &c., Luke 22:41, &c., Math.26:39, &c., Mark 14:35, John 11:42, Mat.3:17 & 17:5 & 26:53. Secondly: Christ Executes his Priestly Intercession perfectively and consummatively in Heaven in his State of highest Exaltation. And this he doth, (1) By his appearing or presenting of his Person God Man, as our Mediator and Surety, in the presence of God for us, Heb.9:24 with Heb.8:6 & 7:22. As Judah mediated, and engaged as Surety for Benjamin, Gen.43:8,9; or, as Paul mediated, and became Surety for Onesimus. Philem.vs.9,10. Christ Appears as a public officer in our stead; as the High-priest of old did appear in the Holiest of all with the Names of the twelve Tribes of Israel upon his breast, and upon his two shoulders for a Memorial before the Lord, that Israel might never be forgotten, Exod.28:9-12, 17-22. To which the Church alludes; "Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine Arm." Cant 8:6. That, denoting Christ's Love; this, the Manifestation of his Love. Jesus Christ still appears before God, for an Everlasting Memorial of his Elect; that none of them may be forgotten before God. (2) By his presenting his Obedience and Death, together with the infinite Satisfaction and Merit thereof, before his Father in Heaven. 1 John 2: 1, 2, Rom.8:34, Heb. 7:25. This was notably typified in the Action of the High-priest of old, who killed the sin-offerings, and then brought the blood of them within the veil into the holiest of all, and sprinkled it upon the Mercy-Seat, and before the Mercy Seat. Lev. 16:11, 14-16. This was one continued action of the High-Priest; his Act was not complete, till the blood was presented within the veil, before the Mercy-Seat. Thus Christ first shed his blood, and offered himself by dying; and then entered as our Intercessor within the veil, into heaven itself, there to present his blood before God, to sprinkle it as it were on and before the Mercy-Seat, and to present his satisfaction and merit perpetually there for us. Heb.8:1-4. Otherwise, if Christ were still on earth, he should not be a Priest (that is, not a complete Priest) seeing that there are Priests that offer gifts according to the Law; that is, till Christ, by consummating his sacrifice, in presenting it before the Mercy-Seat in heaven, did abrogate the Levitical Priests. The inchoation of Christ's Priesthood did not abolish the Levitical Priesthood on earth, but the consummation thereof in heaven by his Intercession did. Now Christ in his Appearing, presenting his Satisfaction and merit, and Interceding for us in Heaven, doth not fall down, kneel, prostrate himself or pray to his Father as he did on earth; for such acts are inconsistent with the Majesty of his Glory and Exaltation; but all this must be understood to be performed suitably to his present and most excellent glory. Thus, the Perfections and Excellencies of Christ's Intercession are many and matchless. For it is grounded and bottomed upon his satisfaction and meritorious Propitiation, which was, by reason of the dignity of his Person God-man, of Infinite value. 1 John 2:1, 2, Rom.8:34, Heb.9:12 to the end. He first pacified God for us; then Intercedes with Him on our behalf. - Thus; His Satisfaction, was properly Expiatory by his death and sufferings. Heb.1:3 & 9:14. His Intercession is especially presentatory, presenting Himself and his Merits for us in Heaven. Heb. 9:24. – This Satisfaction was made but once by once dying, though the virtue of his Death be everlasting; {Heb.9:25,26 & 10:10, 12, 14} His Intercession is continual and incessant for evermore. Heb.7:25. His Satisfaction, obtained our Redemption, Reconciliation, &c.; His Intercession tends specially to apply those Benefits obtained to us. --- The difference between Christ's Intercession from his Spirit's Intercession is observable: Christ and the Spirit, are both of them called our Advocate. Compare 1 John 2:1 with John 14:16, 17, 26 & 16:7; and both of them are said to make Intercession for us. Compare Rom.8:34, Heb.7:25 with Rom.8:26, 27. But there's a great deal of difference between their Intercession. For, 1. Christ intercedes without us, with the Father {1 John 2:1, Rom.8:34}; but the Spirit intercedes within us, to the Father {Rom.8:15,26,27} 2. Christ intercedes for us, as our High-priest and advocate by Office, by Presentation of his Death, Satisfaction and merit, and undertaking our Cause with the Father against all contrary charge, or accusation of any adversary whatsoever; {Heb.7:24, 25, 1 John 2:1, Heb.9:24, Rom.8:34;} but the Spirit intercedes, not as our High-Priest, but as an Assistant to us by his Energy and operation who by Christ are made Kings and Priests to God to offer up spiritual Sacrifices acceptable to God by him. {Rom.8:26,27, Rev.1:5, 6, 1 Pet.2:4} The Spirit instructs, counsels, inspires, acts, moves, suggests, assists us; and so makes intercession for us, by enabling us to intercede for ourselves, and plead our own cause with God in Christ. 3. Christ intercedes for us, by the voice of his own blood speaking better things then the blood of Abel, by the Merit whereof he covers our infirmities and iniquities {Heb.12:24;} but the Spirit intercedes for us, by raising up in our hearts groans unutterable, by his virtue and efficacy helping our infirmities. {Rom.8:26,27} Francis Roberts {Mystery & Marrow of the Bible, 1657}


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Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle
and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus. Hebrews 3:1