Quotes from Church History continued...
… a revelation was made of a distinct person in the Deity, who in a peculiar manner did manage all the concernments of the church after the entrance of sin. (Works, vol 18, 216)
He by whom all things were made, and by whom all were to be renewed that were to be brought again unto God, did in an especial and glorious manner appear unto our first parents, as he in whom this whole dispensation centred, and unto whom it was committed. And as, after the promise given, he appeared ‘in human form’ to instruct the Church in the mystery of his future incarnation, and under the name of Angel, to shadow out his office as sent unto it and employed in it by the Father; so here, before the promise, he discovered his distinct glorious person, as the eternal Voice of the Father. (ibid, p220)
Neither is there any ground for the late exposition of this and the like places, namely, that a created angel representing the person of God doth speak and act in his name, and is called Jehovah; an invention to evade the appearances of the Son of God under the old testament, contrary to the sense of all antiquity, nor is any reason or instance produced to make it good. (ibid, 225)
…in this place it is Moses that speaketh of the Lord, and he had no occasion to repeat ‘The LORD’ were it not to intimate the distinct persons unto whom that name, denoting the nature and self-existence of God, was proper; one whereof then appeared on the earth, the other manifesting his glorious presence in heaven… There is therefore in this place an appearance of God in human shape, and that of one distinct person in the Godhead, who now represented himself unto Abraham in the form and shape wherein he would dwell amongst men, when of his seed he would be ‘made flesh’. This was one signal means whereby Abraham saw his day and rejoiced; which Himself lays upon His pre-existence unto His incarnation, and not upon the promise of His coming, John 8:56, 58. (ibid, 225)
From what hath been spoken, it is evident that he who appeared unto Jacob, with whom he earnestly wrestled, by tears and supplications was God; and because he was sent as the angel of God, it must be some distinct person in the Deity condescending unto that office; and appearing in the form of a man, he represented his future assumption of our human nature. And by all this did God instruct the church in the mystery of the person of the Messiah, and who it was that they were to look for in the blessing of the promised Seed. (ibid, 225)
He is expressly called an “Angel” Exod. 3:2 – namely, the Angel of the covenant, the great Angel of the presence of God, in whom was the name and nature of God. And he thus appeared that the Church might know and consider who it was that was to work out their spiritual and eternal salvation, whereof that deliverance which then he would effect was a type and pledge. Aben Ezra would have the Angel mentioned verse 2, to be another from him who is called ‘God’, verse 6: but the text will not give countenance unto any such distinction, but speaks of one and the same person throughout without any alteration; and this was no other but the Son of God. (ibid, 225)
That the faith of all believers, from the foundation of the world, had a respect unto him [Christ], I shall afterwards demonstrate; and to deny it, is to renounce both the Old Testament and the New. (Christologia, VIII)
From the giving of that promise [Genesis 3:15] the faith of the whole church was fixed on him whom God would send in our nature, to redeem and save them. Other way of acceptance with him there was none provided, none declared, but only by faith in this promise. The design of God in this promise--which was to reveal and propose the only way which in his wisdom and grace he had prepared for the deliverance of mankind from the state of sin and apostasy whereinto they were cast, with the nature of the faith and obedience of the church will not admit of any other way of salvation, but only faith in him who was thus promised to be a saviour. (ibid)
From ‘A History of the Work of Redemption’
When we read in sacred history what God did, from time to time, towards His Church and people, and how He revealed Himself to them, we are to understand it especially of the Second Person of the Trinity. When we read of God appearing after the fall, in some visible form, we are ordinarily, if not universally, to understand it of the Second Person of the Trinity... John 1:18. He is therefore called the image of the invisible God - Col 1:15 - intimating that though God the Father be invisible, yet Christ is His image or representation, by which He is seen.
It is now revealed to Abraham, not only that Christ should come; but that he should be his seed; and promised, that all the families of the earth should be blessed in him.
Thus you see how much more fully the covenant of grace was revealed and confirmed in Abraham’s time than ever it had been before; by means of which Abraham seems to have had a clear view of Christ, the great Redeemer, and the future things that were to be accomplished by him.
The main subjects of these songs were the glorious things of the gospel; as is evident by the interpretation that is often put upon them in the New Testament: for there is no one book of the Old Testament that is so often quoted in the New, as the book of Psalms. … here Christ is spoken of by his ancestor David abundantly, in multitudes of songs, speaking of his incarnation, life, death, resurrection, ascension into heaven, his satisfaction, intercession; his prophetical, kingly, and priestly office; his glorious benefits in this life and that which is to come; his union with the church, and the blessedness of the church in him; the calling of the Gentiles and the future glory of the church near the end of the world, and Christ’s coming to the final judgment. All these things, and many more, concerning Christ and his redemption, are abundantly spoken of in the book of Psalms.