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gy to the Unitarian hypothesis is a task which no effort and straining will ever satisfactorily accomplish. One would conceive that, when St. Paul speaks of " delivering such a one to Satan,” i Cor. v. 15, and of “Satan's transforming himself into an angel of light,” 2 Cor. xi. 14, he meant the same person.
But our new interpreters tell us, that in the first instance Satan is to be considered as a sort of ideal sovereign over an ideal kingdom of darkness : in the latter, as a false Apostle, the leading advesary of St. Paul. I shall quote the last passage. Speaking of false teachers, St. Paul observes, that “they transform themselves into the Apostles of Christ. And no wonder : for Satan also transformeth himself also into an angel of light. It is therefore no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves as ministers of righteousness." What can possibly be more simple in its import? This however is to be thus perplexed ; As the leading adversary of St. Paul, denominated Satan, transforms himself into an angel of light; that is, arrogates to himself the character of a messenger from God;" so also the ministers of this adversary transform themselves into the ministers of righteousness, that is, “pretend to be the Apostles of the Messiah." But where do we find any mention of this leading adversary, who arrogated to himself the character of an angel, (for the words angel of light cannot, I maintain, be lowered into the direct sense of a mere messenger from God, such as were all the prophets,) and who, in pursuance of his divine mission, had his appropriate ministers, diaxovor? Did St. Paul ever term his fellow labourers, in the Gospel his ministers? The ministers of Satan contrasted with the ministers of Christ is sufficiently intelligible. But where is the contrast in opposing the ministers of a false apostle
2 Cor. ii. 11, xi. 14, xii. 7; Ephes. iv. 27, vi. 11; 1 Thess. ii. 18; 2 Thess. ii. 9; 1 Tim. i. 20; iii. 6, 7; v. 15; 2 Tim. i. 26; Heb. ii. 14; James. viii. 7; 1 Pet. v. 8; 2 Pet. ij. 4. Jude 6,
to the ministers of Christ, unless we can also
supposé à contrast in the principles ; viz. between the false apostle himself and our Saviour ? Besides, the word Satan is Hebrew, not Greek, and as being therefore in all probability only known to the Corinthians in a peculiar sense, was scarcely used by St. Paul to express the general idea of an adversary.
But a still more singular exposition occurs in a comment, which they adopt from another writer, upon a passage of St. Jude. In order to point out the dreadful judgments of God against the disobedient, the Apostle instances the punishment of the fallen angels, the destruction of the world by water in the days of Noah, and the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah by fire from heaven. The case of the fallen angels he thus describes: “ The angels who kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in eternal chains to the judgment of the great day," ver. 4.
In explanation of this the following paraphrase is given : “ The messengers who watched not duly over their own principality, but deserted their proper habitation, he kept with perpetual chains under darkness (punished them with judicial blindness of mind) unto the judgment of a great day, i. e. when they were destroyed by a plague. Alluding to the falsehood and punishment of the spies, Numb. xiv. 36, 37!” Were we however disposed to try the experiment, of converting the word angel into messengers, and to consider these as the spies sent out by Moses and the Israelites to investigate the land of Canaan, what possible sense can be made of the crime imputed to them ; viz.“ that they watched not duly over their own principality ?” Nor can those with any propriety be said to have « deserted their proper habitation,' απολιποντας το ŠUUTWV osxignprov, who had no proper habitation to desert. Besides, could we suppose that the phrase, “judgment of the great day,” is synonymous with that of destruction by the plague, still would it require the talent of Edipus
himself in the solution of metaphorical ænigma to demonstrate how the words, he kept in eternal chains under darkness,” δεσμοις αιδιους υπο ζοφον τετηρηκεν, can possibly mean, he punished with judicial blindness of mind ; particularly as St. Peter, who adduces the same example, adds the participle ταρταρωσας, σειραις ζοφε ταρταρωσας παρεδωκεν, « λαυing cust them down to hell, he delivered them into chains of darkness," 2 Pet. ii. 4. And with what propriety can judicial blindness of mind, the act, I presume, of forming an erroneous judgment of the promised land, which con, stituted the crime of the spies, be termed their punishment?
On the whole then ; if the existence of a spiritual enemy to man, under the denomination of Satan, is discoverable in the Scriptures of the Old Testament; if this were confessedly the popular creed at the period of the promulgation of Christianity; if our Saviour himself adopted it as his own creed without any ulterior explanation, not only when publicly addressing the people, but also when privately conversing with his own disciples; and if the Apostles likewise expressed themselves in similar language, it seems reasonable to conclude, that Satan is described as a real, and not as a fictitious being. That translation therefore of the word Eatav cannot be correct, which, by rendering it adversury, deprives it of the peculiar sense which was usually affixed to it. It admits indeed in Hebrew as well the general sense of adversary or accuser, as the particular sense of a fallen angel. But it should be recollected, that the question turns upon its meaning in the Greek, and not in the Hebrew Scriptures. Had the Apostles intended to express the general idea of an adversary, they would doubtless have used avtidixos, or some other equivalent Greek expression ; because otherwise they would have been unintelligible to those, for whose instruction they wrote. Salan, as a term appropriate to an evil Being of a superior nature, could only be understood we may pre
sume, by the Greeks as it still is by us in English : but had St. Luke, for example, instead of us yap úraysis META 18 OVTIδικα σε επ’ αρχοντα, c. xii. 58, written ως γας υπαγεις μεσα σε Zatavā 08 st' apxovia, that is, instead of, “when thou goest with thine adversary to the magistrate," had he written, “ when thou goest with thy Satan to the magistrate,” would not both Greek and English have appeared a little nonsensical? The appropriate name of a person or thing, or of a class of persons or things, before unknown, may be naturally borrowed from another language in which it is familiarly used; but to suppose that the inspired writers of the New Testament, when addressing those who were ignorant of Hebrew, unnecessarily adopted from that tongue words expressive only of general ideas, would be to convert them into a sort of conceited triflers, whose object was rather to puzzle than to instruct. That the Greek language contained no term peculiarly appropriate to the name of a being, respecting whose existence the Greeks had no knowledge, must be evident. Hence 'herefore appears the reason why the Apostles on such occasions used an Hebrew expression. But even this, it may be said, would not have been intelligible, without a previous explanation. Most certainly it would not ; and that very circumstance tends to prove the specific sense in which it was meant to be understood. For if the Apostles, as well as the Jews in general, believed in the real existence of Satan, it is obvious that they would inculcate the same opinion on their heathen converts, and would consequently explain to them the meaning of that term; but if they did not believe in it, no possible necessity could arise for their explaining it, at all. Would they not rather have abstained from every allusion to it, than have run the risk of appearing to countenance a creed which they disclaimed ; and this solely for the puerile pleasure of sporting with a tortured metaphor ? That they proceeded still further, and previously explained the general meaning of a certain Hebrew expression, without
any particular object of the kind alluded to in view, is surely a position which should shock even the conjectural credulity of the new school.
Translation of the word Aysenos, Heb. i. Disputed
books. Griesbach. Conclusion.
Although the Translators take every possible opportunity to represent a belief in the existence of fallen angels as irrational, and therefore unscriptural, they do not altogether deny the existence of angels themselves. This they seem to admit; yet, as the word ay Temos means both a messenger and an angel, they sometimes attempt, for certain theological purposes, to give it the former in preference to the latter signification, in direct opposition to the context. When St. Stephen states the law to have been received by the ministry of angels,” we are informed in a note, that thunder, lightning and tempest, may be called angels, like the plague of Egppt, Psalm lxxviii. 49; and the burning wind, Isaiah xxxvii. 36 ;'* or that
* But the illustrations here adduced are defective in proof. The evil angels or angels inflicting evils, mentioned Psalm lxxviii. 49. ought rather perhaps to be taken literally, in allusion to Exodus xii. 23, where the O'nun the destroyer (sov odofperovta in the Septuagint) is introduced as only permitted to strike the first-born of the Egyptians; and this sense, it should be remarked, is evidently given to the phrase in the Greek Version of Symmachus, who renders it aylenwv XQX8VTWv, angels afflicting them with evils. See also 2 Sam. xxiv. 17, in which David is stated to have seen the angel who smote the people with pestilence. With respect to the passage in Isaiah, that which is termed a burning wind is expressly stated in the text to have been the angel of the Lord, who is represented as having gone out (***) and smitten in the camp of the Assyrians a hundred fourscore and five thousand. Why must we attribute to natural