תמונות בעמוד
PDF
ePub

he concludes, the God over all, the supreme God, be blessed for ever. Amen.'

2. It is also to be observed, that o, the positive article, when joined with a participle, is usually set at the beginning of a new sentence, as John iii. 21, 29, 31, 33, 34, 36, and very many other places. . 3. These words, 'OŠTI YTW are expressly appropriated, Ephes. iv. 6, to the one God and father of all.' There is one God and Father of all.' - 4. The word, 'Evaogros, the Blessed, is used eight times in the New Testament. St. Paul uses it in three places expressly of the “God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.' 2 Cor. i. 3, and xi, 31, and Ephes. i. 3. St. Peter also, 1 Pet. i. 3, uses it express. ly of " the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.' But it is most certain, that it is in no plaće expressly applied to Jesus Christ.

5. The word, 'Auny, in the conclusion of a sentence, is annexed to a doxology frequently and in many places. In some to God the Father expressly, Mat. vi. 13, Gal. i. 5, Ephes. iii. 14, 21, Phil. iv. 20, Heb. xiii. 21, Rev. i. 6. But it is not certainly applied to Jesus Christ in one doxology in express terms, as it is to his God the Father ;' and not once to the Holy Ghost.' Yet how common in our modérn liturgies is this unscriptural doxology, “ Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost," &c. And in our pulpits, “Now to God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost, be all honour," &c.

Note, they have not yet dared to add the word equal in the first doxology, yet they, like true professed trịtheists, publicly own three Gods, or three distinct persons, or intelligent beings, to be each of them God. How amazing and corrupt a change of language! How different from the mind of St. Paul, Ephes. iii. 14—21. There he plainly expresses his mind and a standing rule about the worship of God the Father only;" saying, “To him be glory in the church, by Jesus Christ, throughout all ages, Amen.' Which words may be translated, and more suited to our idiom, thus: - To him,' that is, to the Father be glory in the Christian churches by' or according to the doctrine or instruction of Jesus Christ, through all the generations of this present age, and in after-ages. Amen.'

the books of the New Testament, which are express to the same pur. pose, and represent in the strongest manner, that the Father is superior to Christ, be true;-is, I say, according to the multitude of testimonies, the Father be the God and Father of Jesus Christ,' it must of necessity follow, that Christ is not · God over all blessed for ever,' in .the highest sense of the words; I am inclined 10 think that the apostle intended the relative &; should be understood to refer to cos, and that the sense is, Gúd who is over all be blessed for ever." This sense at least is consistent with other parts of scripture.

Christ himself, with other titles or characters, Rev. iii. 14, has this name, • Thus saith the Amen, (that is, the teacher of the truth) the faithful and the true witness, the beginning of God's creation.'

CHAP. XX. The Supreme God. Ο ΩΝ ΕΠΙ ΠΑΝΤΩΝ. St. Paul expressly applies this character, 'O wy éri vártwy to the Father alone, Eph. iv. 5, 6.

One Lord our Master,' (that is, Christ) and one 'God and Father of all, who is over all.' Observe well in this passage the distinction between • Christ our Master,' and the one God and Father of all.'

In the like manner the passage in Rom. ix, 5, should be applied to God the Father.

This text was so understood by Origen, and most Christians in his time; but the few who understood it otherwise, were the weak, and the rash, in Origen's judgment.

The Ebionites, who it is said, were opposed by Ignatius and Irenæus, for not believing the divinity of Christ, were not pressed with this text; though the moderns make it a most invincible proof of the divinity of Christ.

We, as the ancients did, ought to believe the Father to be greater than Jesus Christ, because himself has told us so. John xiv, 28, x. 29, “ My Father is greater than all; and my Father is greater than'l.'

We then, whose belief is, that the Father is greater than all, and even than Jesus Christ himself, have on our side Origen, and the body of the Christians in his time ; St. Paul, and his, and our master Jesus Christ himself. All which are against the notion of the rash and weak amongst the ancients, and the moderns too, who believe Jesus Christ to be the God over all.

When it is considered, “ that the Father is of none; and the son is of or from the Father alone,” as the Athanasian creed expressly confesseth (and the highest authority expressly teacheth us in the chapters of this book) nothing can be more inconsistent than to suppose the character of God over all, can possibly be applied to Jesus Christ.

CHAP. XXI.

King. ΒΑΣΙΛΕΥΣ. This is a term often applied to Jesus Christ, but not in the highest sense, for it is used of his God and our God,' in the highest and most absolute sense.

St. Paul bath these words, Until the appearance of our Lord Jesus Christ, which at his own time, he shall shew, who is the blessed and only potentate, the King of kings and the Lord of lords.' 1 Tim. vi. 14, 15. Here the supreme God is manifestly described by his appropriate characters, and plainly distinguished from Jesus Christ whose appearance God is to manifest.' And in a noted doxology, St. Paul styles God the King eternal.' 1 Tim. i. 17. And he is also styled . King of saints,' in the Revelations, where

it is joined with other incommunicable characters of the supreme God.' Rev. xv. 3.

It is admitted that Jesus Christ is styled the prince of the kings of the earth, Rev. i. 5, And twice in the Revelations, “ King of kings, and Lord of lords,' xvii, 14, and xix. 16. And that he had a spiritual kingdom,

1. But it must be observed, that he is king of a kingdom that is called God's kingdom. Mark iv. il, 26, 30, and chap. x. five times, &c. and above sixty times in other places. And that this kingdom of God may come,' Christ taught his disciples to pray. Mat. vi, 10.

2. That the kingdom of Christ is a ' kingdom appointed to him by his God and Father.' Luke xxii. 29.

3. This subordinate spiritual kingship of the son appointed to him by his • God and Father' is to be resigned, and surrendered by Christ to God, even the Father; and Christ himself will then be subject to God, that God may be all in all,' i Cor. xv. 24-28.

4. Lastly, Christ himself having acted as a spiritual ruler in God's spiritual kingdom, or as a vicegerent under God in that spiritual kingdom, will resign that great trust which he executed by publishing, and explaining, and enforcing God's laws,' &c. Some of the Fathers have owned (even they who maintained the Nicene doctrine) that the “ Son is subject in his divine nature to the Father, because from him he received his being, and power, and all things.”

Christ declared, that he was obliged to preach the kingdom of God, for he was sent for chat very purpose; Luke iv, 43. And he sent his disciples 'to preach the same kingdom,'x. 149, Acts xxviii. 31. And for this taught them to pray.' Mat. vi. 10.

N. B. The kingdom of Christ was temporary; God's, eternal. Christ's, by appointment of God; God's kingdom by nature.

Christ's by concession;

God's by original, and underived right.

The kingdom Christ preached was not a kingdom of this werld, that is, like other kingdoms ruling by laws which governed their visible conduct and behaviour; but a spiritual kingdom, ruling the invisible acts, and energy of the mind, &c. John xviii. 36.

St. John, the author of the Revelations, represents an angel proclaiming, and acclamations in heaven, saying, ' The kingdoms of the world are become the kingdom of the Lord (Jehovah) and of his Christ, and he (the Lord) shall reign for ever.–And the twenty-four elders sitting before God fell down on their faces, and worshipped God, saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord, (Jehovah) God Almighty, because thou hast taken thy great power, and reignest,' Rev. xi, 15--17.

'It ought well and always to be observed, that these twenty four elders offered their worship to (Jehovah) the · Lord God Almighty,'. &c. No doubt, these elders were altogether right in the object of their worship: yet it is plain, they worshipped God alone; but it is as plain, it is not said they worshipped Christ.

CHAP. XXII. God sitting, or he who sits upon the throne. O

ΚΑΘΗΜΕΝΟΣ ΕΠΙ ΤΟΥ ΘΡΟΝΟΥ. . In the book of the Revelations, God is described by St. John by this distinguishing character,

God sitting upon a throne,' about eleven times; and in some of the very same texts, Christ is mentioned.' Rev. v. 1-6, compared, as standing in the midst of the throne.'

The divine author of this book hath in a very remarkable manner distinguished Jesus Christ, and the God of Christ, by conjoining several divine and

« הקודםהמשך »