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by divine appointment; whom he APPOINTED heir of all things.
Afterwards this writer proceeds to prove that Christ is superior to angels, and at the close of this argument he has these words, but concerning the fon he says, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever; or, as it may be rendered, God is thy throne for ever and ever; that is, God will establish the authority of Christ,'till time fall be no more. A fceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, has anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. From this passage nothing can be more plain, than that, whatever authority belongs to Christ, he has a superior, from whom he derives it; God, even thy God, has anointed thee. This could never have been said of the one true God, whose being and power are underived. · In verses 10, 11, 12. the apostle quotes an address to God, as the great creator and everlasting ruler of the universe, but without any hint of its being applied to Christ, from Psalm cii. 25.-27. And thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the works of thine hands. They shall perish, but thou remainest; and they all fivall wax old as doth a garment, and as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the fame, and thy years shall not fail. This quotation was probably made with a view to express the great honour conferred on
Chrift, Christ, on account of the dignity of the person who conferred it. For it immediately follows, ver, 13. But to which of the angels faid he, that is, the great being to whom this description belongs, Sit thou on my right-hand until I make thine enemies thy foot-ftool. Or, since this quotation from the psalmist describes a perpetuity of empire in God, it may be intended to intimate a perpetuity of empire in Christ, who holds his authority from God, and who must hold it, unless God himself be unable to support it. Mat. xxviii. 19. Go ye, therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the son, and of the holy ghost. This form of baptism seems to be intended to remind christians of the different parts which God, and Christ, and the holy spirit, acted in the scheme of man's redemption; God sending his son on this gracious errand; the son faithfully performing the work which God gave him to do, and being made head over all things to the church; and the holy spirit confirming the word of truth by miraculous gifts. But it is quite an arbitrary supposition, that, because they are mentioned together upon this occasion, they must be equal in all other respects, partaking of divinity alike, so as to be equal in power and glory. The apostle Paul says, 1 Cor. X. 2. that the children of Israel were baptized unto Moses: but he certainly did not mean that Moses was their God.
Acts xx. 20. Feed the church of God, which he has purchased with his own blood. In the moft ancient manuscripts this text is, Feed the church of the Lord; which generally signifies Christ. Also in fome copies it is, which he purchased with blood; that is, the blood of his son. As the blood of God is a phrase which occurs no where else in the scriptures, we ought to be exceedingly cautious how we admit such an expression. If Christ was God, his blood could not be his blood as Ged, but as man..
VI. I shall here introduce a few texts, which are not reduceable to any of the above-mentioned heads, being either interpolations, or mis-translations of the scriptures, or having no relation to the subject, in favour of which they have been quoted.
Col. iii. 10. And have put on the nero' man, which is renewed - in knowledge after the image of him that created him: where there is neither greek nor jew, cire cumcision nor uncircumcifion; Barbarian, Scythian, bond, nor free, but Christ is all, and in all; that is, there is no other distinction to be made now, but only whether a man be a real christian.
i Cor. i. 2. With all that in all places call upon the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord, both theirs and ours.
That adoration, such as is due to the one living and true God, was not meant by the apostle in this place, is evident from the very next words, Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jefus Christ; where Christ is evidently spoken of as distinct from God. It is probable, therefore, that the apostle meant nothing more than such as call themselves by the name of Christ, or who professed christianity.
Act vii. 59. Anil they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jefus, receive my spirit. The word God is not in the original, as our translators have signified, by their directing ït to be printed in the italic character, so that this text by no means implies that Stephen acknowledged Christ to be God, but only informs us, that Stephen addressed himself to Chriff, whom he had just seen in person, in a state of great exaltation and glory; as we read, ver. 55, 56. He, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked Adejtly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Ye us fording on the right-hand of God; and said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the fon of man standing on the right-hand of God. This very language clearly implies, that he considered the fon of man, and God, as distinct persons.
The word, which is here and in 1 Cor. i. 2. ren.. dered to call upon, is far from being appropriated to invocation, as peculiar to the divine Being. It is the Lame word that is rendered to appeal to, as when
Paul appeals to Cæsar; and is used when a person is faid to be called by any particular name; as, Judas, called Iscariot, &c. There can be no doubt, therefore, but that it has the same meaning both in i Cor, i. 2, and also in Acts ix. 21. Is not this he that deAtroyed them who called on this name in Jerusalem? that is, all who called themselves chriftians. It is so rendered, James i. 7. Do they not blafpheme the worthy Name by which ye are called? or, as it is more exactly rendered, which is called, or imposed, upon you? that is, by which ye are distinguished. Had it implied adoration, it would at least have been which is called upon by you.
i John v. 7. There are three that bear record in Beaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghoft; and these three are one. Sir Isaac Newton, and others, have clearly proved that this verse was no part of John's original epistle, but was inserted in later ages. It is not to be found in any ancient manuscript, and has been omitted in many printed copies and translations of the new Testament, at a time when the doctrine which it is supposed to contain was in a manner universally received. I say supposed to contain, because, in fact it expresses no more than that these three agree in giving the same testimony, which is the only kind of union which the spirit, the water, and the blood, in the verfe following can have.