The Bible presents Jesus as our great prophet, priest, and king. These three offices have been written upon by theologians for centuries. Some of the most influential and heart-warming theological reflections and writings, I am seeing, come from the Puritans. With Advent in mind, I want to spend Throwback Thursdays this December focusing on teachings on the person of Christ. Today, I highlight the thoughts of Puritan Edward Reynolds (1599-1676) on the glory of Christ’s priestly work on the behalf on sinners:
Inasmuch as the virtue of the Deity was to be attributed truly to the sacrifice (else it could have no value nor virtue in it,) and that sacrifice was to be the life, soul, and body of the Priest who offered it, because he was not barely a Priest, but a Surety, and therefore he was to offer himself, [Heb. 9:26; 1 Pet. 2:24] and, inasmuch as his person must needs be equivalent in dignity and representation to the persons of all those for whom he mediated, and who were for his sake only delivered from suffering: for these causes it was necessary that God and man should make [read: comprise] but one Christ, in the unity of the same infinite Person, whose natures they both were (A Puritan Theology: Doctrine for Life, 353).
Joel Beeke adds this comment:
[Christ’s] satisfaction was meritorious before God because of the worth of His person. He is the God-man, and both natures were necessary in order for Christ to both present His people and make sufficient payment on their behalf…The worth of Christ’s person is such that He can be a competent substitute and render a sufficient satisfaction for all of God’s elect…Christ satisfied the Father, and He was able to act as surety (i.e. a substitute) because of the covenant between Father and Son (Ibid. 353).