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TER which shall ba worthy of Divine honors; therefore, if Jesus Christ be not personally the self-existent Gad, ccm. not be an object of Divine honors.
But, Sir, be pleased to admit, for one moment, the possibility that Christ is just su h a Person and character as I have supposed him to be truly the Son of the LIVING GOD, Gud's own and ONLY Sona Son in whom it hath pleased. the Father that all fulness should dwell
-one truly united to Deity, and by God invested with the Divine offices of Savior, Lord, and Judge; What but Divine honors are due to his name?
What says analogy ?-By David's pleasure,' we behold Solomon placed on the throne of Israel; and we see the friends of David and of Solomon giving him the honors which were due to the son of David and King of Israel. We also see the Son of GOD," for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor," seated on the right hand of the Majesty on high, exalted by God, as Lord of all ; and shall we pronounce it idolatry to pay him Divine honors as the Son of God, and the constituted Lord of the universe? Or shall we arraign the conduct of God, and pronounce it absurd for him thus to exalt his own SON?
But what saith the Scriptures? When they represent Christ as an object of Divine honors, do they not unitormly represent him as a Person as distinct from God as he is from the FATHER? Is there one instance in which he is represented as the self-existent God, and on that ground worshipped ?-In regard to those declarations of the Di. vine will respecting the honoring of Christ, or the worshipping of Christ, is he not in the plainest manner distinguished from the self-existent God? All judgment was comMITTED unto him by the FATHER, that all men should honor the Son even as they honor the FATHER. Was he not a Being distinct from the one who committed all judgment unto him? In the connexion, he calls that Being his FATHER; and Peter says, that Christ commanded his disciples to preach and to testify that it is He who is ord ina ed of God to be the Judge of the quick and the dead. Therefore, when he is honored as the Judge, he is honored as one ordained of God. He is then, in this case, plainly distinguished from God. It was God also who brought him into the world, as the ONLY BEGOTTEN, and said, “ Let all the Angels of God worship Him." It was God also
who: EXALTED MM":and God gave him the name which is above evėrynane, that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE SHOULD BOW. In all these cases, the Son is as clearly distinguished from God, as Solomon is, in any place, distin. guished from David.
As there is no declaration importing that Christ should be worshipped or honored as being personally the self-existent God, we may perhaps find, that, in the examples of worshipping Christ, he was honored or worshipped as a Being distinct from Gud. When he had stilled the tempest, they that were in the ship came and worshipped him, saying, “Of a truth thou art the Son of God.” And in several instances he was worshipped under this title. By the woman of Canaan he was worshipped as the Lord, the Son of David, Can any person of candor and liscernment suppose, that in either of these cases he was considered as personally the self-existent God? The terms they used certainly import no such thing. To be the Son of God, and to be the self-existent God, are ideas as distinct as David and the Son of David. The Angels were not requ'red to worship him as the self-existent God; but the self-existent God required them to worship Christ as the ONLY BEGOTTEN SON OF GOD. When John, in the Revelations, gives us such a striking representation of the worship or Divine honors paid by all the Angels and Saints to Christ as the LAMB OF GOD, the LAMB, in the representations, is clearly distingu 'shed from God as another intelligent Being--as one who had been sLAINS ONE who had redeemed us to God by his blood. No one, it is hoped, will pretend, that God, the self-existent, was ever slain ; yet when Divine honors were paid the LAMB, the Angels and the redeemed of the Lord said, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain, to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing."
There is not, perhaps, a more striking representation of Divine honors paid to the Son of God, in any part of the Bible, than those which are given by John in the Revela. tions ; yet all those honors were paid to one who could say, “I am He that liveth, and was dead, and, behold, I live forevermore ;” and to one whom the worshippers considered as having been slain. Then, as true as it is that God was never personally dead, so true it is that Jesus Christ may receive Divine honors as an intelligent Being, personally distinct from God.
It may not be amiss here to notice an extraordinary idea suggested by Mr. Jones, in regard to the LAMB. Speak ing upon these words, “ Thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood, and feeling the impropriety of supposing that God suffered and died, he informs us that by the Lamb is intended the Messiah's humanity." [p. 32.] That the title LAMB includes the Messiah's humanity, is not denied ; but that the term LAMB' means the Messiah's humanity in contradistinction to his own proper nature as the Son of God, may not be admitted. If the name Lamb mean the “ Messiah's humanity" in the sense suggested by Mr. Jones, we may properly substitute the terms the “ Messiah's humanity” whenever the word Lamb is used as denoting Christ.
Let us then make use of the substitute in the connexion from which Mr. Jones selected the text.
" And I beheld, and lo, in the midst of the throne-stood - the “ Messiah's humanity," as it had been slain, having
seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God: And he came and took the book - And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and the four and twenty elders fell down before the “ Messiah's humanity”-and they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof; for thou wast slain, &c.--worthy is the.“ Messiah's humanity” that was slain, to receive power, &c.—Blessing, and honor, and power, unto him that sitteth on the throne, and to the “ Messiah's humanity” forever and ever.” Rev. ch. v.
To such absurdity, Sir, are great and good men sometimes reduced, in attempting to support a theory in opposition to the plain import of Scripture language. Had Mr. Jones duly regarded the natural meaning of the terms the Son of God, and believed that he was made in the likeness of men by becoming the soul of a human body, that he really suffered and died on the cross as the antitype of the paschal Lamb, he might then have considered the LAMB, seen by John, as the Messiah himself, and not the “Messiah's humanity.”-But if an Athanasian writer may so construe the names of the Son of God, as implicitly to represent all the heavenly hosts as worshipping the “ Messiah's humanity,” may I not escape censure in regard to the hypothesis that God hath exalted his own Son and constituted him an object of Divine honors ?
What! you may say, are we to have two Gods ? No, Sir; my object is to prove that we have but one self-existent God, by proving that, in the view of God, of angels, and of saints in glory, the Son of God is an object of Divine worship ; not, indeed, on the ground of self-existence, but on the ground of his dignity as God's own and only Son, and the constituted Lord and Savior of the world.
But, Sir, let it be distinctly understood, and never forgotten, that whi e we thus honor the Son of God, we honor the FATHER also. Christ taught his disciples this doctrine, He that receiveth me, receiveth him that sent me ; and he that despiseth me, despiseth him that sent me. And when he taught the Jews that the " Father hath committed all judgment unto the Son, that all men may honor the Son even as they honor the Father,” he subjoined, “ He that honoreth not the Son, honoreth not the Father that sent him." And when Paul stated to the Philippians how God had exilted his Son, and given him a name above every name,
knee should bow to the name of Jesus, he let them know that the Divine hor.ors to be paid to Christ were to the glory of God the Father.”
On whichsoever of the grounds that have been stated, we pay Divine honors to the Son of God, the same are, at the same time, paid to the Father.
If we honor the Son on the ground of the Father's requirement, we thus honor the Father.
If we honor the Son on the principle of derived dignity as the Son of God, the character of the Father is the primary ground of the honors paid to the Son.
If we pay Divine honors to Christ on this ground, that “ in him dwelleth a l the fulness of the Godhead," we honor the fulness of the Father, as truly as when the Person of the Father is immediately honored.
It we honor the Son on the ground of his official character and the Divine authority he possesses by the pleasure of the Father, as the constituted Savior, Lord, and Judge of the world, it is not only the authority of the Son, but the FATHER'S AUTHORITY IN HIM, which we honor and adore.
If we honor him on the ground of his Divine works as Creator and Lord, the FATHER IN HIM does the work.
If we honor the Son on the ground of his abasement, suffering, and death, for our sakes, we are at the same time to remember, that " GOD so loved the world, th
GAVE his ONLY BEGOTTEN SON"_and that it is UNTO GOD” that the Son hath redeemed us by his blood.
Therefore, in every point of view, and on every ground, the Divine honors which are paid to the Son
to the glory of God the Father.”
Is it not, Sir, surprizing, that Christian writers should have been so unguarded as to assert, that if Jesus Christ be not personally and truly the self-existent God, then the Christian church in all ages have been guilty of “ gross idolatry ;” and that the religion of Christ " is so far from destroying idolatry, that it is only a more refined and dan gerous species of it ?" If such writers have incautiously implicated themselves in a charge of idolatry, it is hoped they will not blame me for that. To accuse them of idolatry, or to view them as guilty of it, is far from me. For though the correctness of their views, in respect to the ground on which Divine honors are due to the Son of God, is doubted, yet in my view they have not given him more honor than is due to his name. They may have, indeed, in support of their theory, said things respecting the personal self-existence and independence of the Son of God, which are more than are true ; but it is doubted whether any Christian on earth, in his devotional views and feelings, ever ascribed so much real excellency and glory to Christ, as are properly due to his name.
If f you, Sir, entertain the idea, that my views of the real excellency, glory, and love of Christ, have been lowered down by adopting the present theory, be assured that the very reverse of your apprehensions is the truth. While supporting your theory, and speaking conformably to it, my language imported ideas respecting Christ which now appear incorrect
. But it is one thing to adopt forms of speech of high import, and another to have distinct and impressive ideas of real majesty, dignity, and glory. And while formerly using language which imported the self'existence and independence of Christ, my ideas respecting his greatness and glory, as a distinct Person from the Father, were very confused and indistinct. ' For it was impossible for me to form a definite idea of what could be meant by Person, on the theory of three Persons in one God or one Being. The Son of God, as united to the man or human nature of Christ, was to me a certain something, about which the terms self-existence and independence were