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It has been seen that Philo personified the logos as much as the christian Fathers, and that they probably learnt of him the doctrine of a divine logos being the medium of all the communications of God to the patriarchs, and of this principle occasionally assuming a visible form. But Philo had no idea that this doctrine had any connexion with that of the Messiah, as he gives no hint that this was a character to be assumed by the logos ; nor does it appear that the Jews in any age had such an expectation ; though this has been pretended by some modern christians.
It is unquestionable that, in our Saviour's time, the Jews expected no other than a man in the character of their Messiah, Mary, the mother of Jesus, evidently expected that the Messiah was to be born in the usual way, of two human
of two human parents. For when the angel informed her that she should conceive and bear a son, who should be called the son of the highest, and to whom God would give the throne of his father David, the replied, Luke i. 34. How fall
this be, seeing I know not a man. Our Saviour could not possibly have puzzled the Jewish doctors as he did, by asking them how David could call the Messiah his lord, when he was his son, or descendant, on any other principle. For if they had themfelves been fully persuaded that the Messiah, though descended from David, was the maker and God of David, a satisfactory answer to his question was very obvious. Origen reproaches Celsus for his ignorance, in not knowing that the Jews never believed that the Messiah would be God, or the Son of God *. Facundus very properly says, that “ Martha and Mary would never have “ said to Christ, if thou hads been here, had
they thought him to be God omnipresent.” This writer also says, that the Jews always had expected, and that, in his time, they did expect, a mere man for their Messiah.
They did not know,” he says, “ that Christ, the Son of God, was God; but they thought that Christ would be a mere
* Ουκ οίδε μεντοιγε. οιι 8 σανε τι Ιεδαιοι λεγεσι θεον ονία του spisov xala o noso fai, n Sex vlov. Con. Celfum, lib. 4. p. 162.
man, which any one may perceive that “ the Jews at this time also think *.”
Many christians imagine, that the child called Immanuel by Isaiah (chap. vii. 8.) must be God, because the word signifies, Ged with us.
But the Jews understood their fcriptures, and their own ideas with respect to giving names, too well to draw any such inference from this circumstance. Eusebius says, that they asserted it was not even the Messiah that was intended by Immanuel, but only some common child t.
Basnage, who studied the history and opinions of the Jews more carefully, perhaps, than any other modern writer, and who has written largely on this very subject, though a trinitarian himself, has exploded all the pretences of Cudworth, and others, to find the doctrine of the trinity,
* Sed non propterea Christum dei filium, deum fciebant; hominem autem purum arbitrati sunt Chriftum.--Quod etiam nunc putantes Judæos quilibet videbit. Lib. g. cap. iii. p. 139.
+ Ταυλα δε παλα σερι τα τυχοντος παιδια λεγεσθαι, εκ οιδα πως ournTaley O EM wepilouens. In El. cap. 9. Montfaucon's Col. lectio, vol. 2. p. 391.
either among the ancient or the modern Jews.
• The christians and the Jews, he says, “ separate at the second step in “ religion. For after having adored toge“ther one God, absolutely perfect, they “ find immediately after the abyss of the
trinity, which entirely separates them. “ The Jew considers three persons as three “ Gods, and this tritheism shocks him. “ The christian who believes the unity of “ one God, thinks that the Father, the Son, “ and the Holy Spirit, should all be called “ God, and have the same worship. It is
impossible to reconcile opinions fo con
* « Les chretiens s'ecartent des Juifs des le second pas " qu'ils font dans la religion. Car apres avoir adoré en“ semble un dieu, souverainement parfait, ils trouvent un
moment apres l’abime de la trinité, qui les separe, et les eloigne souverainement. Le Juif regarde trois person
nes comme trois dieux, et ce tritheisme lui fait horreur. " Le chretien, qui croit l'unité d'un Dieu, veut a meine "tems q'on donne ce titre au pere, au fils, au Saint Esprit, " et q'on les adore. Il est impossible de concilier des opi" nions si contraires ; cependant il y a des theologiens " hardis, qui ont tenté de le faire.” Hist. des Juifs, lib. 4. cap. 3. fect. I.
This writer also says, that “ the Jews “ consider themselves as bearing their testi
mony to the unity of God among all the “ nations of the world *.” How far the Jews of late years are from admitting the divinity of the Messiah, we may judge from what Orobio said in his controversy with Limborch, viz. that, admitting what is impossible, that the Messiah whom they expect should teach that doctrine, he ought to be stoned as a false prophet t.
It has, however, been imagined by some, that the Jews had a knowledge of the doctrine of the trinity, that it spread from them among the Gentiles, and that traces of it may be perceived in the mysteries of heathen religions. But if this be the case, it is obvious to ask, why are no traces of this doctrine to be found in the Jewish scriptures, and the Jewish worship? Or, if the
* " Les temoins de l'unité de dieu dans toutes les na« tions du monde.” Hist. des Juifs, lib. 7. cap. 33. fect. 15.
+ Dato impoffibili quod Messias, quem expectamus, eam doctrinam [v. g. se equalem esse deo] Israelem edoceret, jure foret, ut pseudopropheta, lapidandus. Limberch's Amica Collatio, p. 311.