« EelmineJätka »
found in their own souls. It was not their business to puzzle and entangle the Churches with a new gospel, but to stand in the good old way. Every reader may behold the steadfastness of their faith. As they received Christ Jesus the Lord, so they walked in him, rooted and built up in the faith, as they had been taught. Col. ij. 5, 6, 7. .
The greatest humility becomes us, in speaking of what is our own. When grievous wolves creep in, they spare not the flock, speaking perverse things, to draw away discia ples after them. Acts xx. 29, 30. I searce ever knew an author who had a nostrunt in divinity, a contrivance of his own, but he was more impatient to promote that, than the great fundamentals of Christianity. He corild argue against the man who denies the truth, with more temper than against one, who is afraid of his scheme. There can be, the meekpess of a lamb to the former, but the fury of a bear to the latter, who would rob them of their whelps, wbich are only lovely, because they are their own. Elihu thought it dangerous that the great men about him should say, we hooe found out wisdom. Job. xxxii. 13.
I fear it is too much, that a certain author has said of his scheme. « If we'suppose the " Messiah or Logos in his pré-existent state, rs as well as after his incarnation, to be a com“ plex or compounded person ; and that di-“ vine Logos, eternal Word, assumed a superas angelic or inferior nature, called also Lo. s gos, into union with himself, before he
“ took flesh upon him : this would reconcile “ all the ideas which seem inconsistent, and “ scatter the darkness that hangs over the an. " cient writers, and over the scripture itself, .“ if this opinion is not admitted." To this I cannot forbear to answer, in the words of Eliphaz. Art thou the first man that was born? Or wast thou made before the hills? Hast thou heard the secret of God, or restrainest thou wis. dom to thyself? What knowest thou that we know not, what understandest thou that is not -with us? Is there any secret thing with thee? Why does thine heart carry thee away, or what do thine eyes wink at ? Job xv. 7, 12.
By this account, the divinity of Christ is only an attribute : his person is a creature; his hu-man soul is an angelical spirit. . He has no more of God than a property, and no more of man than flesh and blood. This Logos, as we are often told in that book, is the essential poreer of the deity, and has no more than a figu rative personality. , : We are bid to consider to what a superior " height, this doctrine advances the whole per“son of Christ." But the little fling that follows, might have been spared. “Let nog “ those who love the Lord Jesus in sincerity, " be afraid to hear of his various glories." They who love the Lord Jesus in sincerity, delight to hear of his being humbled, and made in alt things like to themselves. They think that the human nature, consists of a human soul as well as body. :. We are farther told, that this scheme lays
a foundation, for reconciling the contentions
.'that have troubled the Church in all ages: * And as it would be a mighty happiness, if “ there was any possibility of uniting, the con" tending parties into one scheme of Trinita“ rian doctrine; so the author says, he knows " no hypothesis bids so fair for it, as this.” And yet,
At the end of his book, he falls off from this same confident boasting, and says, that “ he is “not so vain as to think, this hypothesis will “ immediately relieve every difficulty, that at“ tends the sacred doctrine of the Trinity." Thus he leaves us, as confused and undetermined as he found us. Alas! for those who trust in a covering, which the very man that brought it owns to be too narrow. .... . 3. Another principle of wavering, is a vain supposition that God stands in need of our help, to make what he has said, more easy or evident. I think the words made use of, in the form of baptism are plain enough. - Christ either designed to set them out, in the light of one of these schemes, or he did not. If he did, why has he not given it himself? If he did not, why are we to have it from others?; :. All our dispute, is about the plain meaning of a sentence. I am sure, here is nothing in the terms of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, to make us think of one agent and two powers, or of one God and two creatures. No mortal upon the face of the earth would suppose, that we intended by it, any other than three pera sons, who are distinct, and yet who are equal.
- God appointed, when they made him atr altar, it should not be of hewn stone; for
which he gives this reason, that reaches to every thing in revelation ; if thou liftest up thy tool upon it, thou hast polluted my altar. Exod. xx. 25. But with these tools is the great altar of all, polluted. .. : 4. Sometimes we are tempted, to waver from carnal ease and a love of reputation. How can ye believe, who receive honour one from another, and neglect the honour, that comes from God only? John v. 44. Many of the rulers believed on Christ, but because of the Pharisees, they did not confess him, for they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God. John xii. 42, 43. . ..
These vile principles, can easily cover themselves with the names of temper, charity, moderation, and forbearance; but those glorious things are not to be confounded, with lukewarmness, self-seeking, laziness, or ignorance. The fearful and unbelieving go together. Rev. xxi. 8. Such professors as these, Christ is sick of, and therefore threatens to spue them out of his mouth. Rev. ii. 17. As there is a cloak of covetousness, so there is a cloak of fear and cowardice: and you are to be stript before you are tried. Not he who commends him-" self is approved, but he whom the Lord com- . mends. The Pharisees were they who justified themselves before men, but God knew their hearts; for what is highly esteemed among men, is an abomination in the sight of God
Luke xvi. 15. ,. Many of us, could have been easy in Zion, as well as our brethren, and given up the name of Christ, to have preserved our own. There
is no pleasure in reproaches, and being separated from the company of men. These are trials that we would have kept out of, if it could have been with a clear conscience. But I believe Christ never designed that a Christian preacher should be an Arian favourite. The man whom the enemy admires, is some way treacherous. There is no communion between Christ and Belial; nor between him that believes and an infidel. 2 Cor. vi. 16. · 5. There is a false ungodly charity, that gives up the honour of religion, .merely because it will not be at the pains to defend it. You are never to make peace with men, at the expense of any truth that is revealed to you, by the great God; because that is offering up his glory in sacrifice to your own. Let us aim at the praise, that is not of men, but of God. Aud therefore, let no man deceive you with vain words. Rom. ij. 29.
Do not dismember the Christian religion, but take it all together. Charity was riever designed to be the tool of unbelief. See how the Spirit has connected, both our principles and duties. Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which, no man shall see the Lord, Heb. xii. 13. Seek after the things that make for peace, and those wherein one may edifu another. Rom, xiv. 19.
We are to please allmen, in all things to their edification. But there is a seeking to please men, which is inconsistent with our service to Christ. Whether it is possible, or indeed den sirable to find out a scheme, that will reconcile