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sect, which we have been educated, doth indeed 1. proceed from God, is it possible to con
ceive, that he should send forth a new re, ligion subversive of the former? Is the Almighty a man, that he should lie, or the son of man, that he should deal treacheroully with his people? That surely can never be: we must therefore conclude, that what once was truth can never cease to be truth, and that one divine institution can never contradict or overthrow another.
Such a mode of arguing, considered in the abstract, is doubtless , unanswerable ; especially when Christ had declared, that he came not to destroy the Law, but to fulfil it: but the misfortune was, the later Jews confidered their Law as a whole, instead of a part; as a complete religion terminating in rites and ceremonies, and not as one highly typical and figurative, but yet only preparatory to a more perfect revelation of the will of God.
The Jewish and Christian dispensations, when carefully examined together, form one beautiful and regular whole, the feyeral parts of which perfectly and exactly coincide : of, as St. Paul illustrates it, the
Law was the childhood of mankind; the CHAP. Gospel, the manhood : yet childhood and manhood, though such different stages of existence, form the life of only one human beingh.
There were the errors of the first converts to Christianity, and of the Jews, who remained obstinate in their unbelief; errors, however different in point of malignity, yet all contributing to destroy the true mode of connection between the Law and the Gospel.
| SECT. II. 1
THE CONNECTION BETWEEN JUDAISM
AND CHRISTIANITY BY MEANS OF
C H A P. I.
THE END OF THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE
LAW OF MOSES.
SINCE the Jewish and Christian difpensations are both of divine origin, it is not only necessary that they should be free from mutual contradictions ; but, also, that there should be some bond of connection, by which they may be drawn into contact with each other. Did no such harmony exist, it would be difficult to answer the question, By what authority is the one superseded, and its ordinances, allowedly proceeding from God, no longer observed; while the other is adopted by the whole Christian world, as a standard of faith and practice ?
Were not this question capable of an easy cũAP. folution, the Jews might with justice reproach us, as rejecting truth to embrace error, and as preferring the fictitious legends of imposture, to the wonders of genuine Revelation.
When man first transgressed the command of heaven, and forfeited his native innocence; though the sentence of death was pronounced upon him, yet its terrors were alleviated by the promise of the Mersah. The remembrance of this prediction was carefully preserved by the ancient patriarchs, the expected Redeemer was prefigured by the Levitical ordinances, and the benefits of his death and passion shine with their full lustre in the sacred volume of the Gospel. Although the Almighty may, at different periods, have revealed his counsels to mankind with different degrees of clearness; yet the whole, both of the Jewish and Christian Scriptures, tend to the same point, and unanimously affirm, that without shedding of blood there is no remiffion of fins.
For what purpose then was the Law The end of established ? It was a fhadow of good blishment
of the Law. - II.
SECT. things to come“, ordained by angels in the
hand of a mediator b; and a schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be juftified by faith
From these assertions of the Apostle two propositions may be deduced.
1. That the Law contains a fort of fcenical representation of all the benefits enjoyed by Christians; such as, the gracious offer of mercy held out to them in the Gospel, their redemption and justification by the blood of a Redeemer, and the continual support and influence of the Holy Spirit.
II. And that it is appointed to teach us our need of a Saviour, to act the part of a preceptor to all, who are willing to fubmit with humility to its divine instructions.
The decision of the Church of England on this point is remarkably strong: “ The « Old Testament is not contrary to the “ New; for, both in the Old and New
Gal. jii. 19.
i Heb. X, I.