Obrazy na stronie
PDF
ePub
[blocks in formation]

us.

we can

There are three questions asked in in every thing above us and beneath this chapter. The Sadducees put an The world which we see with the interrogatory to Christ, and the Pha- naked eye opens mysteries to us that risees put another interrogatory to

never grapple with successChrist, and they were not able to en- fully. The world which we see with tangle him by their questions; but he the microscope opens mysteries to us put a question to them which con- which our minds are not able to confounded them, and that is the question template. The world which we see which I have chosen for your consi- with the telescope opens similar mysderation this morning.

teries. The world before the naked There are four propositions of Scrip- eye—the world that comes under the ture connected with God, which a be- cognizance of the microscope-and the liever in the Christian revelation ought world that expands its glories before to be prepared to maintain. First, the telescope, all contain mysteries that the Father is God. Second, that that man cannot grapple with. And if the Son is God. Third, that the Holy there be mystery through the whole Ghost is God. Fourth, that God is line of the creation, up to the very One. These propositions are all con- throne of our God, shall mystery cease tained in the Scriptures ; and although when it reaches the foot of the throne? there is a great and unfathomable mys- Shall we find it from the smallest atom tery in these propositions, and although | up through all the grades of creation, in we cannot reconcile all the difficulties the works which are greatest, and in that are in the mystery which these those which are most minute; and propositions involve, yet still, since shall the Almighty Worker himself be the Bible has come from God, and divested of all mystery and be perfectly since the Bible contains these propo- intelligible to the finite capacities of his sitions, we ought to receive them, creatures? No such thing. The analogy to cherish them, and delight in the of Nature seems to demand that there comfort which the knowledge of them should be a great mystery in revelation ; communicates. We ought not to re- and men who object to the doctrine of the ject them because there is mystery in Trinity, who object to the doctrine of them. My friends, there is mystery Christ's Gospel, who object to the

VOL. II.

P

-THAT

doctrine contained in those propositions of those sublime and abrupt sentences I have adverted to, because they are is—"the Word was God.” It was mysterious ; these men manifest as a remark of one of the old fathers, great an ignorance of nature as they that the name of the Son of thunder do of revelation.

belonged to John, not so much on acThe proposition to which I desire to count of any violence in the manner confine myself this day and to dis- of his ministration, but principally on course upon, as closely according to account of the thunder-like sublimity Scripture as I can, dismissing phi- and grandeur of the sentences he anlosophy, and vain deceit, and meta- nounces respecting the ministers of the physics from my mind as much as Gospel, and respecting the union of the possible, is the second of those pro- Church with its living head—the Lord positions - T THE Son is God. Jesus Christ. When John comes be. And I feel my mind pressed to con

fore you, when he breaks on you with sider this point particularly, because such a sublime sentence as this—“ In it is perhaps the hinging doctrine of the beginning was the Word”-and the Trinity. It is the nucleus pro- carries you back to ages that are position of those four propositions I past, to a period before the creation mentioned before, and also because had sprung into existence—when John certain movements, in the Christian comes before you with such a propoworld, in our own times, press upon sition as this, “the Word was with my mind the consideration of this God”—when he says that “He that truth, more peculiarly, just at this hath the Son hath life”-when he time.

brings before you these sentences, My friends, I shall propose to you teeming with mighty thoughts that nothing new, for who can say any cannot be expressed, he proves himthing new on this glorious subject? self the Son of thunder, for he breaks but I shall endeavour to stir up your upon your attention with all the blaze pure minds by way of remembrance, in of the lightning, and with all the awe bringing before you the things which which the sound of thunder is calcan be maintained, and which are culated to produce. maintained, in the words of Holy Writ, In the first chapter of John, it is respecting Jesus Christ as God; and said that “the Word was God;" and then, if time permit, I shall say a the Socinian's objection here, is a friword or two respecting the atonement volous one, which you will consider. of Jesus ;

and have a word of applica- The Socinian contends that the word tion at the close. May the Lord's “God," in the first verse, is used in Spirit enable us to speak according to a subordinate and minor sense; bethe oracles of God!

cause the article, the Greek article, is The first thing to be proved respect. not given to the substantive “GOD" ing Jesus Christ is, THAT TO HIM be

in the text. He says, that if it were LONGS The name of Deity. Now, meant to be taken in its primary sense, first, the name of God—the name of God | its supreme sense, then the article is applied to Jesus Christ, especially in would be given. But to say nothing that first chapter of St. John's Gospel of other passages of Scripture which

-“In the beginning was the Word, militate against his criticism, in this and the Word was with God, and the very chapter before us his criticism is Word was God.” These are sublime proved to be of no effect; because in sentences—here are sublime and abrupt the sixth verse of the first chapter sentences uttered by John; and one of John, God, supremely, is spoken

was

of, according to his own confes. scribe to your dogma that Christ is sion, and the article is omitted.-only a delegated God, and not the su“ There was a man sent from God, preme God. But if I find a great difwhose name

John." Again, ference, if I find the context ascribing in the thirteenth verse, God con- the name of “God” to Moses, and the fessedly, in the supremest sense, is judges, and at the same time ascribing spoken of, and the article is again it in such a manner as to make us feel, omitted. Which was born not of while we read it, it is only in the blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor minor sense that the term is used; of the will of man, but of God." and if the term be ascribed to Christ, Again, in the eighteenth verse, “no in such a sense, as that the context man hath seen God at any time." forces us to feel that all the works beThere God is confessedly the supreme longing to the supreme God are conGod, yet the article is omitted, there. nected with that name when it is fore his criticism is of no force, and applied to the Lord Jesus Christ, then his objection is answered at once by there is a distinction so great that you the very chapter from which he de

cannot prove any parallelism to exist rives it.

between the passages, and the arguBut there is another objection made ments which you derive from the apto this in reference to some passages pellation given to Moses and the judges which occur in the Old Testament. fall to the ground at once. Thus, in the seventh of Exodus, Moses Now, with respect to this name is called God in a certain sense, and given to Moses, it is said to be used we must meet the objection. The here on a particular occasion—that is Lord said unto Moses, see, I have he stands before Pharoah with autho. made thee a god to Pharoah, and rity from God. And in the case of the Aaron thy brother shall be thy pro eighty-second Psalm, the context inphet." And in the eighty-seventh forms us in what sense those persons Psalm, the kings and governors of are called gods.

“I have said, ye the earth are called gods according to are gods; I have said, ye are my rethis language, God standeth in the presentatives on the earth, but ye congregation of the mighty; he judgeth judge unjustly; ye do not defend the among the gods. I have said, ye are poor and fatherless; ye know not, gods, and all of you are children of the neither will ye understand; ye walk Most High." Well, the Socinian says, | in darkness, and all the foundations of here you see the name of God is given the earth are out of course, in conseto Moses and the prophets, and given quence of you. Ye shall die like men, to rulers, and therefore you must not and fall like one of the princes.” Here, argue from the name God being ap- when these judges are called "gods," plied to Christ, that he is very God. they are called “gods” in such a Well, then, I say to him, I must take manner, and in such a sense as to the context to inform me in what sense prevent the most cursory reader from the term “ God” is applied to Christ, attributing supreme deityship to them ; and in what sense the term “God” is for the name is connected with ignoapplied to Moses ; and if I find the rance. While they are called “ gods," context instructs me, that the term they are also called ignorant. The “ God" is applied to Moses, the pro- name is connected with moral turpi. phets, and the judges of Israel in the tude-they are said to be walking in same sense in which the term God is darkness. The name is connected with applied to Christ, then I will sub. injustice "how long will ye act un

[ocr errors]

justly?” The name is also connected hast laid the foundation of the earth; with death-"Ye shall die like men, and the hearens are the work of the and fall like one of the princes.” So hands. They shall perish, but thou that, you observe, the context most remainest : and they shall wax old as carefully instructs us in how minor a doth a garment, and as a vesture shalt sense, in how subordinate a sense, the thou fold them up: but thou art the term is applied to those persons who same, and thy years shall not fail." were gods by delegation.

Here he is called God in the same But now, let us see, dear brethren, connexion with the creation. when the name of God is applied to But, observe, Christ Jesus is called Christ, in what sense, and in what the “true God" in the first epistle of connexion, it is applied. Here, in this John. In the latter end of that epistle first chapter of John, it is applied to you will find this quotation—" this is Christ in connexion with CREATION :- the true God and eternal life. Little “by him were all things made; and children, keep yourselves from idols.” without him was not any thing made “This is the true God," the immediate that was made.” And we find, in the antecedent was Jesus Christ. “ We are Old Testament, in the forty-eighth of in Him, that is true, even in his son Isaiah, and in the tenth of Jeremiah, Jesus Christ.”

“ This (that is gramGod challenging the creation to him- matically) Jesus Christ, is the true self as his great work, and using this God and eternal life. Little children, language :-"mine hand hath laid keep yourselves from idols.” But the the foundation of the earth, and my Socinian would say, the pronoun right hand hath spanned the heavens.” « this” refers to Him that is true, “ The gods that have not made the that is the Father. Well, I say to heavens and the earth, even they shall the Socinian, this argument of yours perish from the earth and from under is built on contradiction to the plain these heavens." He challenges crea- grammatical construction. I say to tion to himself as the peculiar mark the Socinian, I have the grammatical of the true God. Now, we find this, construction in my favour. I say it is which is the true characteristic of the more according to grammar that the true God, maintained by God himself, pronoun should agree with the imconnected in the first of John with mediate antecedent than with the rethe name of God, as applied to the mote antecedent. The immediate an. Lord Jesus Christ. As much as to tecedent is Christ, the remote antesay, when he is called God he ap- cedent is the Father. I bring the pended that mark to the name to dis- pronoun back to the immediate antetinguish him from every other being cedent, therefore I am speaking more called god, and which proves him to according to the grammatical conbe the Supreme God. Again, he is struction of the language-you bring called God" in this connection, in back the pronoun to the remote antece. the first chapter of Hebrews, where dent, therefore you violate grammatical

thy throne, O God! is for construction. But, I say to them again, ever and ever; the sceptre of righteous- the "eternal life” here, must be Christ, ness is the sceptre of thy kingdom : for this is the very name given to thou hast loved righteousness and Christ. In the beginning of this hated iniquity; therefore God, even epistle, and in the first and second thy God, hath anointed thee with verses, John announces himself thus: the oil of gladness above thy fellows. “That which was from the beginning, And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning which we have heard, which we have

[ocr errors]

Paul says,

seen with our eyes, which we have ginning of Matthew, when he says,
looked upon, and our hands have taking up the language of the prophet
handled, of the word of life, for the Isaiah in the same place, “A virgin
life was manifested, and we have seen shall conceive and bring forth a son,
it, and bear witness, and shew unto , and they shall call his name Im-
you that eternal life which was with manuel.” This quotation of Matthew
the Father, and was manifested unto is taken from the prophecy, which
us.” The term “eternal life,” the same speaks of Christ as Immanuel—the
which occurs in the close of the God who is, the Wonderful, the Coun-
chapter, is ascribed here to Christ : sellor, the Mighty God. Here then
“the word " which was revealed, also, we find Jesus Christ called by
whom the Apostle heard, whom the another term, which shews us in what
Apostle taught, whom the Apostle sense “ God" is to be applied to him.
felt, whom the Apostle spoke of. Be- | When the name “God” is put after his
sides, this word “life" is one of the name he is called “the Mighty God-
names by which Christ calls himself. Immanuel-God with us.”
You will doubtless remember how He But again, he is called “God” in
uses the expression, “I am the way, another peculiar sense. In the ninth of
the truth, and the life.” This word the Romans he is called “God over
"life"occurs in a great many parts of the ALL, blessed for ever.” In the ninth
Scripture in connexion with Christ, as chapter of the Romans, Paul, speaking
being peculiarly his name; so that it of the privileges of the Jews, says,
is said, “he that hath the Son hath “whose are the fathers, and of whom,
life,” because Christ is “eternal life.” as concerning the flesh, Christ came,
But here, it is said, that that Being who is over all, God blessed for ever.”
who is the true God is also “eternal Here, you see the antithesis is very
life :” therefore the Socinian not only much to be observed. He speaks of
violates the grammatical construction, Christ in the flesh-he speaks of him
but he violates the whole of the Scrip- as to his true humanity, and he
tures, which speak of “the life” in speaks of him in another sense, as to
connexion with Christ, and call Christ his true divinity. Concerning the
by the name of “the life.” We have flesh," “God over all, blessed for
not only the grammatical construction

I
say

that all the manuscripts in our favour, but the use of this term contain these verses—all the Fathers in other places establishes the fact, almost contain these verses—and the that Jesus is “the life"-and being whole of the learning of the Christian “the life,” that he is the true God. world goes to prove the integrity of Now, observe, we find him called God the text, as we have it now, upon a in connexion with creation; and we here comparison with all the fragments find him called God with peculiar em- and relics of antiquity that we possess phasis, because he is the true God. on the subject.

In the ninth of Isaiah he is called But here, you see, in what sense “the Mighty God.” “Unto us a child Christ is called God. He is called is born, unto us a son is given ; and the God in connexion with creation, in government shall be upon his shoul- connexion with the term ' life" ders; and his name shall be called and the “ true God.He is called Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty GOD” in connexion with the term God, the everlasting Father, the Prince Mighty ;and he is called “GOD” of Peace.” We know that this is Jesus in connexion with his supremacy Christ from the quotation in the be.. over all—God blessed for ever."

ever.

« PoprzedniaDalej »