18th November 2020
“After the similitude of Melchisedec there ariseth another priest, who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life.” Hebrews 7:15, 16
We may say of the life which the Lord Jesus lives in the courts of heavenly bliss that it is a threefold life. There is, first, his eternal life, by which I mean the eternal life of God in his divine nature. This he lives in himself; for “as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself” (John 5:26). He is hereby “Alpha and Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.” And this life is the foundation of all his acts of mediation, as being God over all, blessed for ever.
But there is a life which he lives for himself, viz. a life of inconceivable glory in his human nature. This is the life which he laid down that he might take it again. This life is the cause of, and is attended with all that ineffable glory which he now enjoys in heaven. This life he lives for himself, his reward, and the glory and honour with which he is crowned; as the Psalmist says, “Thou settest a crown of pure gold on his head. He asked life of thee, and thou gavest it him, even length of days for ever and ever” (Psalm 21:3, 4).
But there is another life which he lives: a mediatorial life, a life for us. Thus we read, that “he was made a priest after the power of an endless life;” and he says of himself, “I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death” (Rev. 1:18). Now this life does not differ essentially from the second life, of which I have spoken, the life of glory in the human nature; but it differs in this point, that when the work of mediation is accomplished, he will cease to live a mediatorial life; for he will then “deliver up the kingdom to God, even the Father, when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power” (1 Cor. 15:24).
J. C. Philpot 1802-1869