Page images
PDF
EPUB

And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding that we know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. Amen.” (1John iv. v.) “Grace be with you, mercy, and peace from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ the Son of the Father, in truth and love. Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed.” Except we believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, it is impossible to rightly appreciate the love of God towards

But on the most consoling and important considerations deducible from the establishment of this essential point of Christian belief, we propose to separately and distinctly treat: we shall only here remark, that to impress the necessity of assent to this doctrine appears to have been the motive which stimulated this venerable, peculiarly amiable, and highly distinguished, beloved apostle, to the so frequent repetition and energetic enforcement of the belief in this most important article of the Christian creed. And he by his own declaration clearly proves, that he considered the acknowledgment of this truth as the most secure preservation against the attacks of scepticism with which revealed religion, from its earliest promulgation in our world, was destined to cope. These things have I written to

US.

you concerning them that seduce you, (namely, many antichrists,) fearing that his much-loved disciples might be alienated from the right faith through them.

The foregoing recapitulation, selected from so many different parts of the sacred volume, written by so many different inspired authors previous to and subsequent to the introduction of Christianity on earth, does, we think, fully and incontrovertibly answer the inquiry which occasioned this research, by clearly asserting that Jesus Christ, according to the whole tenor and declarations of the Scriptures, is the Son of God, in a manner entirely paramount and superior to any other intelligent throughout the boundless uni

verse.

We shall next examine the holy records, as to the equality of the Son with the Father : and first, respecting his nature. God himself is, we know, a Spirit: (John iv. 24;) Christ is also a Spirit; (1 Cor. xv. 45 ;) man is a living soul, but Christ a quickening Spirit, of the same nature with the paternal Deity as an earthly son is with an earthly parent: a full participator of the divine nature: for as the Father hath life in himself, so hath He given to the Son to have life in himself, (John v. 26 :) the same vital principle and power of imparting life, as dwells inherent in the great I Am. Christ was that spiritual Rock which of old sustained the Israelites. (1 Cor. x. 4.) The salvation into which the prophets inquired and diligently searched, “when prophesying of the grace that should come, searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified before hand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you, with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven ; which things the angels desire to look into.” (1 Pet. i. 10–12.)

This recital not only powerfully illustrates the equality of the Son of God with his Almighty Father—for the Spirit of Christ was the spirit of prophecy--but also his high superiority over the angels (though they are also spirits :) in it we find the mighty Lord of angels testifying by his Spirit things concerning himself, unto agents greatly inferior to angels, even the prophets on our earth; the greatest among whom is less than the least in the kingdom of heaven, and the angelic hierarchies (of the highest orders, as appears from the hallowed types,) in deep humility desiring earnestly to look into and comprehend those revelations which the Spirit of Christ was pleased to impart unto beings so very inferior unto themselves. And in the quotation just inserted from the Hebrews, we find all angels commanded to bless and worship Christ, who is head over all things ; over all principality and power :

angels, and authorities, and powers being made subject to him.” (1 Pet. iii. 22.) “ Let us make man, (Gen. i.) implies equality ; every type of heavenly things connected with the glorious Son of God, depicteth royalty: the table on which is

placed the symbolic bread of life, and the incense altar, are both surmounted with a crown of gold. The prophecy of Balaam foretells a star and sceptre-a star denotive of a celestial sceptre. The whole of the forty-fifth Psalm is entirely correspondent with the description already transcribed from the first chapter of the Hebrews : “ Thou art fairer than the children of men, grace is poured into thy lips : therefore God hath blessed thee for ever. Gird thy sword upon thy thigh, O most mighty, with thy glory and thy majesty. And in thy majesty ride prosperously, because of truth, and meekness, and righteousness; and thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things. Thine arrows are sharp in the heart of the king's (of God the Father's) enemies, whereby the people fall under thee. Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever; the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre. Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, (evidently proving that God before spoken of was God the Son, one with the Father,) hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.* All thy garments smell of myrrh, and aloes, and cassia, out of the ivory palaces, whereby they have made thee glad. King's daughters were among thy honourable women: upon thy right hand did stand the queen in gold of ophir. Hearken, O daughter, and consider, and incline thine ear; forget also thine own people, and thy Father's house; so shall the king greatly desire thy beauty: for He is thy Lord; and worship thou him.” “And they shall

* There is one God and Father, of whom are all things : therefore, the one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, may in this sense, as proceeding forth from God, be denominated a fellow with God's vast intellectual offspring, who all derive their origin from the same One source. And he professed himself not ashamed even to call us brethren: he is fellow with God in his divine nature, and fellow with all intelligents, as deriving his existence from him.

go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, for fear of the Lord, and for the glory of his majesty, when He ariseth to shake terribly the earth.” (Isa. ii. 19.) This prophecy must mean the glory of the majesty of God the Son; being parallel to that contained in the Apocalypse, wherein it is said that the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every freeman, will hide themselves in the dens, and in the rocks of the mountains, and will say to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, (whom various Scriptures assert to be Christ,) and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand ? (Rev. vi. 15–17.) For he will smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall He slay the wicked. (Isa. xi. 4.) And as the preceding verses of the chapter last quoted show that it is Messiah who will smite the earth, and slay the wicked; it also proves that it is the glory of the majesty of God the Son which ariseth to shake terribly the earth. In the 9th chapter of Isaiah, 6th verse, our blessed Saviour is distinctly termed the mighty God; clearly describing God the Son in

« PreviousContinue »