« PoprzedniaDalej »
the Scriptures, with Annotations and Reflections;" and other Works; and Editor of the Guardian of Education. ---Rivingtons and Hatehard. Large 8vo. Pp. 822
(Continued from page 60.
HE first book of Moses called
GENESIS ARGUMENT, -The Book of Genesis was so called because in this Book Moses gives an account of the origin of all things. It begins with the creation of the world, and ends at the death of Joseph; comprehending the space of
Chap. I. The first chapter contains an account of the creation of the world. -Reflections after reading the chapter. The first chapter of Genesis teaches us the first truth in religion, namely, that there is a God, who created the world, and all things that are therein; that it is he who has given to all creatures the nature and qualities that belong to them; and that by his will the world subsists in that admirable order which we observe in it. But that we chiefly learn from this chapter is, that God made man after his own image; that he gave him dominion over all other creatures, and endowed him with a spiritual and immortal soul, capable of knowing and loving his creator; and, therefore, it is our duty to ackuowledge and adore the power, majesty, and wisdom of God, which are so manifest in all his works; to celebrate his goodness towards us, and continually to render him the thanks, love, and obedience, which are so justly due to him. Chap. II.--). After God had created the world in six days, he sanctifies the seventh day. 2. He places Adam in the terrestial Paradise, and coinmands him not to eat of the fruit of a tree, which is called the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. 3. We have an account of the creation of the woman, and the institution of marriage.-Reflections. We are to observe three things in this chapter : 1. That God, having created the world in six days, rested on the seventh, and hallowed that day; that ihe observation of the sabbath-day might serve afterwards, to keep up among men the remembrance of the creation of the world. 2. It must be observed, that God placed Adam in Paradise, that he might be happy; but to make trial of bis obedience, at the same. time gave him a law, attended with severe threatnings;
In this pro
forbidding him upon pain of death, to eat of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. ceeding of the Almighty, we see the great goodness of God towards man in his state of innocence; but this shews likewise, that man could not be independant; that he was obliged to submit to the laws of his crcator; and that by his obedience alone, he was entitled to the effects of divine love.-3. What Moses relates of the institution of marriage, obliges us to acknowledge the great wisdom and goodness of God, appearing in this law, which he made at the beginning for the good of mankiad: It obliges us also to honour marriage as a holy state, which has God for its author; and to avoid every thing that is contrary to so huly an institution, and particularly inpurity, and all manner of uncleanness." All we mean to say, having thus laid the observations of Mrs. Trimmer and M. Ostervald, in juxta-position, before our readers, is, that the former is more copious than the latter author.
Mrs. T. manages with great address, and in a way we might expect from one governed by the dictates of female delicacy, those passages of Holy Scripture, which, although set forth with primitive simplicity, distress the feelings of families, and even congregations, when they happen to occur. We instance in the observations on the 39th chapter of Genesis.
“ Observe that though Joseph was sold for a slave, he fell into the hands of a good master, whose confidence he soon gained by his faithful and wise conduct; and that, when, by the false accusation of a wicked woman, he was thrown into prison, Gon graciously disposed the heart of the keeper of the prison to show kindness to him ; so that even in this dismal place he found an honourable situation. Any one would have thought Joseph's case was desperate, when he was sold by his unnatural brethren to strangers who dealt in the traffic of human kind, and who bought him with no other view than to sell him for a slave; and little could. Joseph expect that in his jailor he should find a friend, but the good providence of God attended him wherever he went. By his behaviour, in respect to Potiphar's wife, and in his fidelity as a servant, Joseph set an excellent example; to which young men should pay great attention, and imprint on their mind his pious reply to the wicked intreaties of his mistress, ver. 9, Ilow can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God? especially in these times when adultery is so openly countenanced. Qur author is perfectly. ORTHODOX in all that regards
both doctrine and discipline.--. Doctrine. St John, chapter 1,
Ver. 1 to 18. " Observe that Jesus Christ is truly God, that he was made man, and that he caine into the world to save mankind.
Ver. 1 to 4. " By the Word is meant the same divine Being who, in the Old Testament, is called the Lord God. know that the Lord God, and the Word of whom St. John speaks, mean the same divine Being, because the same acts are ascribed to both. In Genesis he is sometimes called God, and 'sometimes the Lord God. It is here said that the IV ord was with God, and the Word was God. The Lord God is described as the Creator in the Book of Genesis; and it is here said that all things were made by the Iord, and without him was not any thing made that was made. Remember that the Lord God, the Word, and the Son of God, are only different titles for that Divine Being by whom all things were created. Ver. 4, 5.
"In the first chapter of Genesis it is said, that God breathed into man the breath of life. It is here said, that in the Word was life; which proves that the Word was no other than the Lord God. In the Old Testament we read, that the Lord God appeared and conversed with men, and taught them to know their Creator, and to serve hiin. Observe, that it is here said the IVord was the light of man; by which is to be understood, that religious knowledge came to mankind through the Son of God: for light, in the scripture sense, means religious knowledge, and darkness signifies ignorance of religion. Ver. 5 to 9.
“ The John, here mentioned, was not the Evangelist of that name, the writer of this Gospel, but John the Baptist, the forerunner of the Messiah, who was also to bear witness to his being the author of true religion,
Ver. 9 to 15. “Observe here, that the light of religious know: ledge shined in the world by means of the Lord God, from the creation; but a great part of mankind lost the benefit of it, and fell into darkness, or ignoranče, of true religion, by forsaking the Lord, and following their own imaginations. This was the case with the heathens, who worshipped idols; and this was the case, also, with many who were called the Lord's own people, the Israelites; they turned away from worshipping the Lord and worshipped idols, and their minds were darkened But there were always some in the world who believed what the Word revealed, and they were reckoned the sons or children of God.
In the beginning of the world, the Lord God appeared upon earth in a bright and glorious form, the form of the Son of God. . He was seen by Adam and Eve in Paradise, by Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, by Moses, and many other chosen persons. His glory appeared between the cherubims upon the
mercy-seat in the tabernacle and the temple; it was seen in the cloudy pillar, and it was also seen on the top of Mount Sinai, in terrible majesty, when the law was giver to Moses. Afterwards the Lord on account of the wickedness of his people withheld his glory, but he then spake to the world by the niouths of the prophets, and they foretold that he would come to redeem mankind. We learn, from the New Testainent, that at the very time, and in the manner foretold by the prophets, that the Redeemer should come, the Lord God laid aside the glory which he had before the world was, and took our nature upon him, and appeared in the likeness of man; or as it is expressed in the 14th verse, the Word was made tesh und dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth; or, in other words, it was plain, from the gracious acts he did, and the divine truths he revealed, that God was in Christ. Therefore, if we wish to be received us the children of God, we must believe that the Lord God was really and truly united with Man, in the person of Christ JESUS our Lord.
Ver. 15. “ The Word, to whom the Baptist bore witness, existed before him, though he was not born into the world till after his birth, for according to his divine nature the Word was eternal..
Ver. 16. “The meaning of this verse is that the Il'ord was filled with divine wisdom, and eternal life was in him, and these he freely communicated to those who were willing to receive his doctrine.
Ver. 17.: “ The law of Moses related only to the Jews, as the chosen people of God, and conveyed temporal blessings alone; but our Lord Jesus Christ came as the Mediator of a betler covebant than that made with Moses, by which mankind were reconciled to God, and received the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Ver. 18.“ In the first chapter of St. Paul's Epistle to the Hebrews, which throws great light on this chapter, the Son of God is called the brightness of his Father's glory, the express image of his person; and St. John here declares that no man has seen God, that is, God the Father, at any time, but that the Son hath revealed him. We may therefore understaud, that it was the Son of God who appeared as the Lord God in the first ages of the world, and who afterwards showed forth the glory. of the Father in the Aesh.
Ver. 19 to 29. “Observe, in these verses, the great humility, zeal, and faithfulness of the Baptist.
Ver. 29 to 35.“ By the Lamb of God, ver. 29, the Baptist, certainly meant the Redeemer of the world, who was represented in the Jewish sacrifices by a lamb without blemish; for the Redoemer alone can take away sin by giving up his life for the redemption of mankind.
From ver. 31, it appears that John the Baptist did not know Jesus to be the Messiah, till the Holy
Spirit descended upon him at his baptism; but by the express declaration of God the Father by a voice from heaven, John was convinced and bare record that Jesus was truly the Son of God, and as such we should honour him."
Again Romans, chap. 3,
Ver. 1, 2. “ The Jewish nation was certainly a favoured people, as God had promised to his faithful servants, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, they should be; and while they remained separate they had greatly the advantage of the heathen nations. The oracles of God, which were committed to them, signified, the commandments, the statutes, the laws, and the ordinances of God. The reasoning in the following verses is among the things which St. Peter says, are hard to be understood, and which he cautions the nnlearned not to meddle with lest they wrest them to their own destruction. It is certainly true, that all mankind stand in need of a Saviour to redeem them, because all are reckoned sinners, as being of the race of Adam, and also because there never has been, nor will there ever be, a mere human creature free from the corruption of actual sin; and there is no way for them to be saved but by the free grace of God, bestowed for the sake of Jesus Christ; all, therefore, to whom the Gospel is preached, must place their dependance for salvation on the merits of their Saviour, not on any works of their own; yet they must not neglect to do the works enjoined by the moral law, namely, the commandments of God.
We find by the preceding chapter that, the people of God, whether Jews or Christians, were, and are, required to keep the law; let not any one say, therefore, that the works of the moral law are of no avail to Christians; for unless they conform to the commandments of God, they will have no interest in the salvation purchased for mankind by the death of the Redeemer; on the contrary, our Saviour has declared, that at the last day he will say to those who neglect to do these works, Depart from me ye wicked, into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels. See Matt. chap. xv. ver. 41, &c. also Matt. vii. ver. 21, 22, 23.”
CHAPTER IV. "Observe in this chapter, that the faith which was approved in Abraham, was a faith built on the promises of God, which led him to obey the commands of God however difficult they might appear: Call tu mind these promises, and what God commanded him to do, as related in the book of Genesis, and turn also to chap. xi. of St. Paul's Epistle to the Hebrews, where you will tind that Abraham had, like Christians, an eternal inheritance in view. You will then understand what a justify. ing faith is, that is, a faith which God reckons for righteousness, namely, a faith which leads those who do it to obey the commandments of God; for none will be justified at the last