Bible Witness and Review: Volume 1

Table of Contents

1. The Sabbath, the Passover, and the Unleavened Bread: The Feasts of Jehovah
2. The Sabbath: The Feasts of Jehovah
3. The Passover: The Feasts of Jehovah
4. The Feast of Unleavened Bread: The Feasts of Jehovah
5. The Wave-Sheaf and the Wave-Loaves: The Feasts of Jehovah
6. The Wave-Sheaf: The Feasts of Jehovah
7. The Wave-Loaves, or Feast of Weeks: The Feasts of Jehovah
8. The Feasts of the Future: The Feasts of Jehovah
9. The Feast of Trumpets: The Feasts of Jehovah
10. The Day of Atonement: The Feasts of Jehovah
11. The Feast of Tabernacles: The Feasts of Jehovah
12. The Olive Tree, Fig Tree, and the Vine: The Feasts of Jehovah
13. Union in Incarnation, the Root Error of Modern Theology
14. Scriptural Unity and Union*
15. Have We a Revelation From God?*
16. Note for Page 28
17. Christological Pantheism
18. The Church and Its Privileges*
19. The Bearing of 1 Peter 2:24
20. Melchizedek: Biblical Annotations
21. Matthew and Levi
22. The Close of Mark Authentic and Genuine
23. Doctrine of a Future State in the Pentateuch
24. The Word Aionios
25. A Disputed Passage
26. The Out-Resurrection in Philippians 3:11
27. The General Design of the Gospels
28. Baptized for the Dead
29. Perfect, Not Sinless
30. My Brethren
31. The Mount of Olives Cleft
32. Greater Than John the Baptist
33. He That Letteth
34. Full Assurance
35. City of Refuge
36. The Savior of All Men
37. Death Abolished
38. The Day of the Lord
39. The Millennium
40. Conscience
41. Every Family
42. National Resurrection
43. The Birth of Christ Mistimed
44. The Suitability of the Evangelists
45. Choice of Scene
46. The Strait Gate
47. They Shall Receive You
48. Private Interpretation
49. The Vine of the Earth
50. The Spirit and the Bride Say, Come
51. The Resurrection of the Body
52. The Intercession of Jesus on the Cross
53. The Last Day
54. The Dependent One
55. The Faith
56. The Septuagint
57. Who Are "These Kings?"
58. Parable of the Virgins
59. Greek Word Translated Forever, Dienekes
60. Fallen From Grace: Texts Misapplied or Misquotes, Part 1
61. The Hope of Righteousness: Texts Misapplied or Misquoted, Part 2
62. The Work of the Spirit: Texts Misapplied or Misquoted, Part 3
63. The Two Ministries
64. Life in Christ Risen
65. The Love of Christ to the Church
66. Mount Zion
67. The Seventy Weeks of Daniel
68. The Personal Reign
69. The Leprous House
70. The King in Daniel
71. The Vine and the True Vine
72. Our Conflict
73. God's Earthly Center
74. The Author of the Epistle to the Hebrews
75. The Land Shadowing With Wings
76. This Generation
77. Guilt and Grace
78. Love and Love
79. Shipwreck of Faith
80. The Life, Not Judgment, of the Righteous
81. The First Jewish Mission
82. The Least in the Kingdom of God
83. As Oracles of God
84. Delivered From the Law
85. The Coming and the Day
86. Not Put Under Angels
87. Soul and Spirit
88. Mercy
89. Head of His Body the Church
90. The Gift of God That Is in Thee
91. Genesis
92. The Hope Set Before Us
93. The Transition Period
94. Son of God and Son of Man
95. The Parenthesis in Romans 5
96. The Church
97. Who Shall Confirm Covenant?
98. The Seven Parables
99. The Heavenly Calling
100. What the Church Consists Of
101. All They That Be in Asia
102. They Did Eat and Drink
103. Epistolary Communications: Tabernacle, Covenant, and Putting Away
104. The Ransom Money
105. Four Characteristic Features of a Christian
106. The First-Born of Every Creature
107. The Philanthropy of God
108. Westminster Confession of Faith
109. The Question and the Crisis
110. Non Eadem Imago
111. De Propitiatione

The Sabbath, the Passover, and the Unleavened Bread: The Feasts of Jehovah

EV 23: 1-5‒5: 44{)IT is my hope to bring before you, in the Scripture we have entered on to-night, the whole outline of the dealings of God with His people on earth, not of course in detail, but, first, the original purpose as before God; next, the foundation which He laid in order to accomplish this purpose; then, again, the ways of God in the application which He made of the mighty work thus accomplished; and, finally, the direct and full result.
It will be proved in the course of these remarks that God did really look forward far beyond His ancient people. These feasts had a simple and primary application, as no one doubts, to the Jewish people; they, at any rate the chief of them, served the purpose of gathering Israel around Himself where He had placed His name. But it is impossible to limit Scripture to such an application. I hope to give you what the Holy Ghost contemplates in the types; for God was looking on to other things, and far greater than men are apt to allow. All was future in this point of view; and even now we may see what will be, as well as that which is, and what has been accomplished. He has anticipated that which would have an entirely different and superior character, indeed what we commonly call Christianity; He removes the veil from the age to come when He will establish the kingdom in glory. Thus we shall be able to trace the dealings of God, first, not merely in letter but in grace, and then, when it will be no longer grace but glory, and
that not only for heaven, but mainly for the earth. It is quite a mistake to suppose that His glory is connected only with heaven. Undoubtedly He has allowed Satan to do his worst, but He has already won the victory morally in Christ, and efficaciously in His death and resurrection; and He will prove it before every eye in a day fast approaching. But now we walk by faith, not by sight, and I trust that the Scripture thus brought before us may contribute to strengthen the faith of those who believe, as well as to rebuke those who dare to disbelieve, the word of God.

The Sabbath: The Feasts of Jehovah

The first thing I would draw your attention to is this, that the Sabbath is introduced in an altogether peculiar manner.
This is no mere idea of mine, nor of any one else. It is marked very clearly in the opening of the chapter before us.
"And Jehovah spice unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, concerning the feasts of Jehovah, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are My feasts. Six days shall work be done; but the seventh day is the Sabbath of rest, an holy convocation; ye shall do no work therein; it is the Sabbath. of Jehovah in all your dwellings." Thus the feasts open; but let us notice that the fourth verse begins again, "These are the feasts of Jehovah." Hence we see that in the beginning of the chapter, where the feasts are introduced generally, the Sabbath is named in particular; next, in verse fourth, there is a fresh beginning, which excludes the Sabbath. Now there is nothing in vain in Scripture; not a word from Genesis to Revelation which God wrote could be changed but for the worse. I know certain minds find this difficult to believe; and the reason is because they judge of God by themselves. If you or I had written it, there would have been many a word to change for the better; and we are apt to attribute our infirmities to God's word. No man can rightly reason on God's word from himself; nor is it sound to reason from nature up to nature's God. We must begin with God, and reason from Him, or His word, down to His works. If we begin with what we find in reason or things here below, we begin with what is frail, feeble, inconstant; and how can we reason soundly when we start from that which breaks at the touch? When we begin with God and His word, we are guided by that which judges all around. But the tendency of men is to take on them to judge the word of God: did they believe that the word of God judges them, it would be safer and more becoming.
Now if God has given a revelation of His mind, that revelation must be worthy of Himself; and He has taken particular pains to call it His word. Undoubtedly He wrought by various means; but He never calls it the word of Moses, or David, or John, or Paul, but the word of God. Let us never forget this. It may be said that there is here a difficulty, and what appears even to be an irregularity. The Sabbath is introduced first as the beginning of the feasts; and then, secondly, we begin again, when the Sabbath is left out. Why? Because the Sabbath has a character altogether peculiar to itself. Evidently as a matter of fact, and merely looking at it from a literal point of view, all the other feasts were celebrated but once a year, the Sabbath every week. There is therefore a distinct line of demarcation; and so the second beginning is justified. But still the Sabbath has the character of a feast, and with a most important aim, if in a way that marks no other; for that feast, and that alone, was to be continually repeated, as the end of the week came round.
And here let us not fail to notice the difference between this and what Scripture calls " the Lord's day." Those who would and do confound the two understand neither. The Sabbath day was historically and originally at the end of the week, when man had accomplished his ordinary round of toil. The end he gave to God. He had labored Himself for six days, on the seventh He rested. According to God's law, it was not merely a seventh, but the seventh day. No other day of the week would have done so well, or at all, if one looked at it as truly fearing God. From an utilitarian point of view, one day was as good as another; and that is man's way of dealing with things. But God knows that man is prone to forget Him even in creation, and above all to forget the gracious purposes of God pledged in the Sabbath.
What is it that God means to bring in? A rest for His own, a rest worthy of Himself, and a rest which He will share with His people. When will this be? Not till the end of all things. I am far from meaning that every man will enjoy that rest. No one can think or say so who believes what sin is, or that God will judge the world by the Man risen from the dead and ordained for it. But while acknowledging that God must show His deep resentment against evil, we believe also that He has brought in a Deliverer and a deliverance for us; in due time a full and a perfect deliverance for creation. This is precisely what God will make good in the day of Christ's coming; and His rest it will be.
Let me refer here to the great New Testament Scripture on the rest of God. In Heb. 3 and 4. you find the Spirit of God (after pointing to Christ on high, Son of God, and Son of man, who had died atoningly), introducing this rest. What gave occasion to it was the evident danger for the Hebrew believers of taking their ease now, and thus forgetting they were only passing through the wilderness. They were so accustomed to connect with the coming of Messiah a present rest, that they could hardly understand that they were ushered into a scene of trial answering to His who suffered without the gate, and called to count it their privilege. They were in danger of seeking to make themselves at ease and comfortable here. The first Epistle to the Corinthians shows that they were not alone in this. It is a very natural snare to the heart of man, even to those who have found the Savior. After there has been doubt and anxiety, the soul knowing what the judgment of God on sin is, and its own utter guilt and condemnation, when deliverance in the Lord Jesus is once found, there is often danger of reaction. The soul is apt to settle down, thinking that the campaign is over, because the great battle has been fought, and the victory is given through the Lord Jesus Christ. They flatter themselves that there can be no more trouble, because the deep soul-distress is past. It is sufficiently plain that these Hebrews were in some such state, and the apostle not only reminds them how joyfully they took their early spoliation and sufferings, but here instructs them that they are not yet after the pattern of Israel settled in the land, but like Israel passing through the wilderness. Accordingly we find that the whole argument of the epistle supposes not the temple, but the tabernacle, from first to last; and thus hails from the camp, not from the throne or kingdom set up after the conquest of Canaan. Hence he says, "Let us therefore fear, lest a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it ", (ch. 4: 1). We see at once that the apostle is not speaking of believing in the Lord Jesus for present rest of conscience. Had this been the point before him, he would have boldly assured them there was no need to fear.
If we speak of the blood of Christ, and then should exhort to fear, it would be the denial of Christianity. The gospel is the declaration of full remission, yea, of more than this, of justification, of reconciliation with God through the Lord Jesus. If forgiveness through Christ’s blood was the question, he would rather call on them to vanquish every fear; for, as the apostle John says, in discussing that point, "Perfect love casteth out fear," not "perfect love " on our part the law asked for that, and never could get it); but the perfect love of God, which is only revealed in and through the Lord Jesus Christ. What are we to be afraid of then? Not of the blood of Christ failing, not of losing the remission 'of sins through any change of mind or at any moment from grace in God. But be afraid of settling down this world, and coming short of the true outlook of pilgrims and strangers on the way to a better land. To have rested in the wilderness would have been fatal to an Israelite; and so we have to remember that this is not our home, and that to settle down would be virtually to deny ourselves the rest of heaven.
In passing let me remark that this epistle was written by the apostle Paul and no one else. Men may question, as they do everything now-a-days, but there is no real ground of doubting it. For Peter proves it in his second epistle, where he says (chap. 3: 15)-" Even as our beloved brother Paul also, according to the wisdom given unto him, bath written unto you." Now, as we know, he was then addressing believing Jews; so that Paul must have written to them also, and this can be only the epistle to the Heb. 1 refer to it now, simply because Satan is trying to undermine everything, and it becomes of growing consequence to meet lesser questions, as well as daring attacks on the word of God. It is high time that every man who is by grace a believer should declare plainly what he is. Does His goodness not claim it at our hands to be confessors if not martyrs?
I say then, that in this epistle the Spirit of God brings before us the necessity of going forward to the rest of God; and I press this as the only genuine meaning, because it is often applied to soul rest, which it rather tends to enfeeble or destroy. That it is not within the scope of the passage in the text, we may see from verse 11, where it says, "Let us labor, therefore, to enter into that rest." What sort of a gospel would it be to tell people they must labor for rest of conscience? Evidently it would be to upset the grace of God; for it means no other than salvation by works. On the face of it, all can see that the apostle here is addressing such Jews as professed Christ, and that they then were in danger of slipping into present ease, instead of pressing through the wilderness world on their way to that rest of God, the rest of His glory.
Do not suppose that I deny for a moment that there is in Christ a present rest for faith. The Scriptures speak of it plainly:-" Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." This is the rest of grace now, not of glory. Then there is something farther too:-" Take my yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls." First, He gives rest unconditionally, in pure sovereign favor, to all the weary that come; and then, when walking in the path of submission to Him and obedience, the faithful find rest. For if one is disobedient, one must have (as John says) the heart ill at ease-it condemns one; and, then, how can there be rest? But there remains a third thing: not only rest given by Christ as a present relief to the conscience, and, again, true rest of heart found in the path of obedience and learning of Him; but, thirdly, the rest of God when it is no longer a question of man and sin and self-will and misery, but all the checkered scene of toil and suffering will be over, when God will rest in the satisfaction of His own love and glory, having brought His sons and people into His everlasting rest.
Doubtless, as the apostle argues, God gave the Sabbath at the beginning; but this was not His rest, for sin spoiled creation, and He says afterward, "If they shall enter into my rest." " If " implies that they had not entered it, and might fail also. So again, after Joshua (or " Jesus") had put down the Canaanites (he never completely conquered them), after Israel had settled themselves in the land, was that the rest of God? By no means; for the Psalm which speaks of that rest was written long after Adam and Joshua. The conclusion, then, is that "there remaineth therefore a rest (σαββατισιός, a keeping of sabbath) to the people of God." Consequently it has not yet come. The apostle strengthens this from another principle, namely, that one cannot be both working and resting, in the same sense, at the same time. If one has entered into rest, one has done with works, even as is said of God Himself (ver. 10). But the bright day when we shall rest is not yet arrived. So that he is exhorting the saints to labor. Now is the time for work; and every one that has the love of Christ in such a world as this must feel it, for the simple reason that there is sin and wretchedness in the world. Divine love, whether in God or in His people, refuses to rest in the midst of evil. After Christ comes this will not be so. "There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God."
It is not the same principle which we find in the Lord's day, for this is the intervention of divine power in the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, after He had gone down into death to make propitiation for our sins and reconcile us and all things to God. Consequently the Lord's day is an excellent day for spiritual toil, for the work of faith and the labor of love; and no one acquainted with Christ would think it wrong, if able, to preach a dozen sermons on that day, nor to take a dozen Sabbath-days' journeys to preach them. Were it the Sabbath-day, he could not do so lightly. Thus they have a wholly different character. The source, nature, and end of the Lord's day is marked out by grace in the resurrection of Christ from the dead, as the Sabbath is by creation and the law of God.
It seemed good to the Lord then, and it is necessary for man, that there should be first the great truth of the Sabbath set forth before we enter on the ways of God. Before He accomplished the mighty work, He hung out clearly and distinctly this initiatory pledge of rest at the end. I am coming to have my rest, He says, but not to have it alone: you shall share it in glory with Me. The Sabbath is to be fulfilled in a day yet to come; and that both for heaven and earth. But the rest is after all work is done, whether in type or anti-type.

The Passover: The Feasts of Jehovah

But now we come to another thing: God laying the foundation of it all; and mark first, He does not effect it hastily. There are many who think it would have been exceedingly good if God had at the beginning given His Son to die for sinners. Instead of this He waited for 4000 years. Why so? In the word we get the key to the difficulty. " When the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth His Son," etc. It was not on the first day of the first month that the Passover was instituted, that great standing type of Christ slain for sinners, but on the fourteenth day. Was not God in this delay signifying the fullness of time?
First, He leaves man to his own way; and then, lest man should complain that he had gone astray because abandoned to himself, God took him in hand and tried him under law. So Israel, as the center of mankind, was placed under His government. What was the result? After all possible pains the bad tree bore more bad fruit. Israel at the close was worse than at the beginning. The end of man was the Cross of Christ. They hated the Son and the Father. Therefore do we hear of, Christ's death at the consummation of the ages. It is not a chronological expression; but God had tried man in various ways, which ended in nothing but wickedness and ruin. What does God do then? He displaces man's religion and his failure by the infinite work of redemption; and this is what we have in the Passover.
Verse 5, "In the fourteenth day of the first month, at even, is Jehovah's passover." What was the great principle of this feast? God had come down to deliver His people from the house of bondage. It was not because of any good in them, for the children of Israel at that time were worshipping false gods, and were utterly indifferent to the glory of the True. But next, if God delivers them, He must deliver them righteously. Pay particular attention to this. It is not simply a question of mercy in forgiving those who are wicked, but He will have them before Him on a foundation of right. He is a just God and a Savior. Hence on that night He sent through the land a destroying angel to avenge sin. It was judgment of evil, and the first thing done. He came down by that angel to deal with whatever was offensive to His character. And there was but one thing which stayed the hand of the destroying angel. What was it? The blood of the slain lamb. Wherever it was not on the doorposts or upper lintel, death reigned. Not that God was yet judging all mankind. It was a sample, which testified what sin deserved, and what alone could screen from God's judgment. God declared, in that blood on the sprinkled doorposts of the children of Israel, that death only could stay judgment.
It was in the last degree solemn-the lamb judged for sin. But what wondrous grace! Judgment falling on the lamb; not on the guilty, but on their substitute! It was the judgment of God because of our sins which Christ had to endure, the spotless Lamb of God. What was it made the Lord Jesus sweat, as it were, great drops of blood? Was it the mere act of dying? This would lower the Lord below yourself if you are a believer. Why, a Christian rejoices in the thought of departing to be with Christ, who alone suffered and died for our sins.
What was the meaning of that cry, "My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me?" It was the judgment of sin which then fell on Christ. It was not what the Jews did, nor Pontius Pilate, nor Herod, nor man in general laid on Him. I know the popular hymn says, "I lay my sins on Jesus." But the truth is far better than that: God laid them there. If it had been you or I that must bring our sins for expiation, we might have forgotten many; but Jehovah laid our burden on Him. And hence the Lord suffered on the Cross as never did before either any other or Himself. For if He had been bearing sins all His life, as some say, either He must have been forsaken of God all His life, or God must have acted as if sin was tolerable till then. Is either thought true? Neither; indeed, without even an appearance of truth. Christ suffered once for sins.
This judgment of God falling on the Lamb alone explains what sin is and deserves; and the sprinkling of the blood on the doors answers to the believer's application of Christ's' blood by faith to his own case. In this and this alone was seen that which has made it a righteous thing to put away sin. God's judgment fell on His Son, because He is His Lamb, who was able to bear it. The blood of the Lamb is the witness of the judgment, but in richest fullest grace because it was on His Son it fell. This was God's view of it; and you must remember that in these types we are considering not what Moses or others understood, but what God said and faith receives in and through our Lord Jesus. Do you ask my authority for all this? Turn to 1 Cor. 5:7, "For even Christ, our Passover, is sacrificed for us." Is not this ample authority? And God says this to those who had been Gentiles and now were His church; for He was looking far beyond the Jew on to another day, and this is the day in which we find ourselves. Christ's death is the groundwork of all our blessing, the blood of the slain Lamb, the Lamb of God that beareth away the sin of the world. We may see too, that it was not a question of continuous or repeated offering; as the apostle argues in Heb. 9:26, "For now once in the end of the world hath He appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself." Further, " He bore," as Peter says, " our sins in His own body on the tree." The consequence of His work is perfect peace to the believer. If it were continually going on, one could, one ought, never to have settled peace. The perfect efficacy goes with the singleness of Christ's offering, through righteousness as the apostle teaches in Rom. 5

The Feast of Unleavened Bread: The Feasts of Jehovah

But there is another feature to be noticed. The Passover was followed immediately by the feast of unleavened bread. There was not a single day that intervened.
Now, as an ordinary rule, there was a space between these different feasts; but here is an exception to the rule. And let me ask you, who could, save by God's power, have appreciated the force of this beforehand? Now that it is revealed, we may follow. Like Moses from the cleft of the rock, one can see Him as He passes before us; but who can go before Him? The Passover was followed immediately by the feast of unleavened bread. There was not the lapse of a day between them-one being on the fourteenth, the other on the fifteenth, day of the same month. Indeed, as the feast of unleavened bread in the New Testament is treated as beginning with the killing of the paschal lamb, the immediate response of the Christian to Christ's blood is to walk in holiness. God will not have him to take a single day to himself. At once he is called by the grace of God to own himself responsible to put away all leaven. We know from 1 Cor. 5 that leaven is symbolic of corruption. Ver. 7: " For even Christ, our Passover, is sacrificed for us; therefore let us keep the feast." What feast? The Passover? No; the feast of unleavened bread.
This feast, again, we see, is not like the Passover; for one day was to be kept in the latter case, seven days in the former. I may assume that all here who have read their Bibles know the force of "seven days." It was a complete cycle of time, and also doubtless in connection with God's people on the earth. "Day" might be used of heavenly or eternal things, not "seven days."
We may get important instruction in God's ways from all this. There are in Scripture several applications of leaven. The Lord speaks of the leaven of the Pharisees, of the Sadducees, and of Herod. The Holy Ghost uses the expression " a little leaven" twice in the Epistles of Paul; but from this we do not well to allow the thought that they are parallel passages. Each has its own force, though there is of course a common character. But I feel very strongly, as to all such passages apt to be loosely huddled together and called parallel, that we should seek to discriminate. True wisdom is not manifested, as the sages say, in trying to see resemblances in things which differ, but in discerning the real difference among those which resemble one another.
What you need to cultivate is a sound judgment, and you will never get it by hunting up so-called parallel passages. The habit is, on the contrary, destructive to intelligence in the word of God. Hence I believe it would be far better if such references were left out of our Bible, and the readers had to learn it thoroughly for themselves. I do not mean you should not have a concordance or kindred help; but the Bible should be printed alone, and is incomparably richer without than with these additions, which habitually mislead by confounding the distinctions which lie under phrases more or less verbally similar. The headings of the chapters and at the top of the columns are often worse than useless, conveying at best the mere views of men, and encumbering the page which should give Only what is divine.
It is written then that " a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump." Hence to many, as the same words appear in two different passages, the too rapid inference is that they point to just the same thing. So far is this from being true that the application is wholly different. What then is the bearing of each? Let me call your attention to the general principle, that, if you wish to understand any verse of Scripture, you must always interpret it by its context.. In 1 Cor. 5 leaven represents what is unclean and corrupting, and manifestly immoral. They were not to allow "the wicked person " in their midst, for evil spreads, and ever so little leaven, if allowed, sours and taints the whole lump. In Galatia evil was taking what we may call a religious or legal form (Gal. 5:9). The Christians were observing days, months, times, and years. 'They were crying up circumcision as a desirable supplement to faith. This was the Pharisaic leaven, as the other was the Sadducees. The leaven of the Sadducees was the evil of free thought and licentious action. The leaven of the Pharisees was that of rigorous legalism and human tradition.
Keeping the feast of " unleavened bread " typifies the maintenance of personal holiness. So Scripture insists: Rom. 6:12,13.; 1 Cor. 5:6.; Gal. 5:6.; Eph. 4:5.; 1 Thess. 4:1-8; Heb. 12:14, etc. If we do lift up our hands to the Lord, let it be piously, without wrath or doubting; let the walk and ways be under the sense of responsibility, as separate to the Lord; let love be without dissimulation and with incorruptness.
But is the person all? Not so. Leaven was to be banished from the house as well as from the individual. You will often find people careful and jealous as to personal walk, and to the last degree lax as to ecclesiastical impurity. The Lord calls on us here to beware of the allowance of leaven anywhere. Corporate purity is worthless without due regard to personal holiness. Some bring their horror of clericalism or of the sects into shame and contempt by their carelessness about their spirit and ordinary walk. We are bound to eschew all evil, whether collective or individual. In short, what God has at heart is this-that we should please Him in every relation, in what is collective as well as individual walk. The feast of " unleavened bread" takes in the entire pilgrimage, our whole course public as well as private. Thus we may see that if the feast was to begin on the first day after the Passover, the greatest care is taken to show that it was to be continued throughout our entire life here below. To keep this feast is ever our calling while on earth.

The Wave-Sheaf and the Wave-Loaves: The Feasts of Jehovah

EV 23: 9-22: 44{)I HAVE already shown the character of the Sabbath, and how God introduced it in a manner altogether peculiar. He presented it at the very beginning of the feasts, though in fact its accomplishment, viewed now as a type, will be at the end. It is the great purpose to which all lead. As a present witness to this God attached such importance to the Sabbath, that, differing from all the other feasts, it was to be repeated at the end of every week.
Further, it is a mistake to suppose the Sabbath is done with, for it is to be in force throughout the millennium. I am not speaking of the Lord's day, when we very properly meet together as Christians; and I believe, so far from its being a mere question of man or churches appointing that day, that it has the very highest divine sanction. So true is this, that a Christian losing sight of the import, object, and character of the Lord's day would be more guilty than a Jew that dishonored the Sabbath day. But as the Lord's day came in by the resurrection of Christ for the Christian and the church meanwhile, it will be the Sabbath and not the Lord's day when the Lord God establishes the kingdom and our Lord Jesus Christ reigns manifestly; when idolatry shall be abolished, superstition swept away, and every kind of iniquity that now raises its head will have met its end; when every creature in this world will be restored. For I pity the man who thinks the world was only made to be spoiled: certainly he who does not believe it is spoiled must be more lamentably wrong; but it is a gloomy and false thought that God made creation only to be ruined. As surely as the first Adam was the means of universal ruin for the creature, so the Second Adam will be the great Deliverer not only of us but of it. He will reconcile to God all that He made, that is, all things: I say not all persons, for this is fatal error. In Scripture you never read of all persons being reconciled.
One little word makes all the difference between blessed truth and hateful error. What can be more false than the infidel dream of universal restoration? God will judge all whose sins have not been borne away by faith in Christ and His cross.
There is a day coming when all creation will rejoice, when the heavens and the earth and all in them will sing together. God has taken particular pains to express the earth's joy also, and it is a singular proof of the infatuation of man that he can-not see it though clearly revealed. This will be the rest of God; and, when it comes, the Sabbath and not the Lord's day will again be the distinctive sign of God, which He will have observed and honored through the whole earth. You will judge then from this that I am anything but an anti-Sabbatarian. Yet it is an indisputable fact now that all is changed. We do not keep the last but the first day of the week. And what principle lies at the bottom of the change? That the Lord is risen indeed, and not only so, but is gone to heaven, and the first day of the week shines from the person of the risen Lord Jesus in the heavens, now opened, on a heavenly people who are as yet here, but going to be with the Lord Jesus there. Hence it will always follow that, when men confound the Sabbath and the Lord's day, they are earthly-minded. As the Sabbath is bound up exclusively with the earth and an earthly people, so is the Lord's day with those who are heavenly.
The next feast, indeed the first of the feasts proper as here begun, is the passover. " In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is Jehovah's passover." The foundation of all the ways of God for a fallen people is laid not in grace only but righteousness; it is the death, the efficacy of the blood, of the Lamb. Theology would have ordered otherwise, and made it the law or Christ's obedience of it. But mark it well: the first feast is not even a witness of the incarnation, nor of the Lord's path on earth; but His blood staying divine judgment. God begins with Christ's death: and no wonder; He could not overlook our sins; and there they were for the first time righteously met, and one may add, as far as the type goes, for the last time as well as first. They were perfectly met for us by Him. It made no difference to the revealing Spirit whether the facts were present or future, so far as the communication of God's mind was concerned. All was before His eyes, though in Christ and after redemption the truth comes out with deeper and infinite fullness. But every scripture is divinely inspired, and it was just as impossible that God could lie before His atoning work was accomplished as when it was; and that is in part my reason for taking this chapter to speak on. It is high time for every Christian to stand for the word of God, and for every written word of His. The difficult times of the last days are come. Those that hesitate their dislike, or openly declare it, against what they call verbal inspiration, are apt to lose all right sense of God's word. It might be profitable, for such as shrink from the inspiration of the word, to say what remains for themselves to depend on. If you give up to the infidel the words of Scripture, he will not leave you the thoughts of God. You may try to separate the truth from the words of God; but truth is communicated by words; and the apostle claims to speak " in words which the Holy Ghost teacheth." The Bible is the only book which possesses such a character; and the Christian who is led by the Spirit in searching the word of God will learn how worthy of all confidence is the only and absolutely perfect communication of the mind of God.
On the paschal night God acted as Judge. This was necessary and righteous. And let me remark here how dangerous it is when people talk about His love, where they ought to think and bow before His solemn judgment of sin.
I do not deny love for an instant; but even the boundless love of God cannot treat with sin, except by His own judgment of it. If sin were to be judged in our persons, we must be lost forever. But then grace provided an offering, the only adequate one, in Christ on the cross; and, accordingly, all the holy unsparing force of God's judgment fell on the head of the Lord Jesus there and then. It is not merely that He died in love in order to meet our. need-this He did most surely, but far more and of deeper import, for He met the judgment of God. He suffered what sin deserved at the hand of God. And this is so essential to truth that one could not call a true believer in the atonement the man who only sees Christ dying in love to man, and so only takes in the outward fact and human side of the cross.
It is plain fact that those who that day only saw Christ crucified were none the better, but rather worse. They were hardened at the sight, and afterward more careless than ever. Those whom grace gave to believe what God wrought therein were saved from wrath. It was shadowed in the blood of the slain lamb.
Thereon immediately (and there is nothing morally more remarkable in these feasts) follows the feast of unleavened bread. Indeed, as may be seen elsewhere, the two are so bound up together that they are both sometimes called the Passover. Not one day is allowed to separate them; and this because God will not allow that the remission of our sins brought in by the blood of the Lamb shall be forever so little separated from our responsibility to holiness. The moment the Israelite was under the shelter of the blood of the lamb, he was forbidden to eat leavened bread, or have leaven in any shape within his house.

The Wave-Sheaf: The Feasts of Jehovah

But now we come to another principle. It was not merely that God was at the cross as the Judge of sin. What was shown at Christ's resurrection? We all know, as it is written, that God, the very One who smote Jesus, raised Him from the dead. Sin was condemned, not for every one, but for those who believed. For those who do not believe there will only be the greater condemnation, for their sins are aggravated by the fact that, in the face of God, they have despised and rejected the Son of God; and, more than that, the Son of God dying as a propitiation for sins. Thus the divine judgment of sin on the cross makes the case of the unbeliever incomparably graver; for he is not only' a sinner, but refuses the grace of God that would save him.
Here we come to a new section, and indeed a new utterance of Jehovah to Moses, not precisely a new feast, but at any rate introductory to a new feast and indeed the whole pivot on which it turns. " Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto
you, and shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the first-fruits of your harvest unto the priest" (v. 10). What is the bearing of this? I am addressing those who, it may be taken for granted, believe that every word of God has a meaning, and a most important meaning. You do not require to be reminded that God's word before Christ is just as truly inspired as the New Testament.
The wave-sheaf then is introduced as quite separate from the passover and accompanying feast of unleavened bread. But in point of fact the wave-sheaf was waved on the first day of the week that followed the passover. So the Lord was crucified on Friday, lay in the grave on the Sabbath or last day of the week, and rose on the first day or Sunday as the Gentiles called it. He was raised from the dead on the very day the wave-sheaf was waved before Jehovah. Little did the priest who waved it conceive the power and character of the truth 'set forth in the first-fruits he was thus presenting before the God of Israel. But the Risen One and Raiser of the dead had left the grave and broken its power for the believer, whether they knew it or not; and if the Jew refused to listen, the Gentiles. by grace would hear. Indeed there is no apter figure of resurrection in the Bible than that of the grain falling into the ground and dying, and then springing up. It is the Lord's own illustration in John 12:24: "Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone; but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit." Of whom was it spoken? Of His own death and resurrection, with its mighty consequences. If He is not raised, vain is apostolic preaching, and vain the Christian's faith. But Christ is raised from among the dead, first-fruits of those fallen asleep.
So here it is said, "And he shall wave the sheaf before Jehovah, to be accepted for you" (v. 11).
Nor is salvation ever known without it though souls may be born again. For it is the light of His resurrection which chases away all gloom and dries every tear of anxious sorrow. It is the resurrection of the Lord which brings out the acceptance of the believer without question before God. In His death our evil was dealt with atoningly, the sole righteous basis for the forgiveness of sinful man; but Christ's resurrection declares that the sins are forever gone for those who believe. " He was delivered for our offenses, and raised for our justification." " On the morrow after the sabbath the priest shall wave it." The type is fully confirmed by the striking coincidence of the facts.
This then is what we have prefigured in the wave-sheaf: Christ raised by God's power and the Father's glory; by His power entering the grave of the Lord Jesus, after all that He felt and could do against sin was exhausted in the cross. Therein was God glorified so, that it was His right to raise up Jesus from the dead, never ceasing till He set Him at His own right hand in heaven, and gave Him a name which is above every name. As man He died; as man He is raised up and exalted. As a divine person, the Son has everything; but He became a man, and humbled Himself, yea, to death of the cross; and now, in resurrection, He is taken up as man by the power of God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, that our faith and hope might be in God.
With the wave-sheaf there was to be no offering for sin. This is a remarkable exception. If Israel or the Christian had been meant, there must have been a sin or trespass offering. Here it is Christ, and as fittingly there was no sin-offering. When it was a question of bringing Israel out of Egypt, blood was put on every door-post. The passover was thus a striking type of blood shed and sprinkled to stay divine judgment, with holiness following. Here is a fresh thing in the wave-sheaf. For there are two great principles: one displayed in the death of Christ; the other in His resurrection; and they are so distinct that God. employs two different types to show them forth in our chapter.
It is certain that this typifies Christ's resurrection, and none but His; for we see there was no offering for sin connected with it. He was the only man since the world began who could be presented to God without blood. An offering for sin was needed, even for the high priest, " as for the people, so also for himself;" but not so for Christ, who died for our sins. Ver. 12: " And ye shall offer that day when ye wave the sheaf an he-lamb, without blemish, of the first year, for a burnt-offering unto Jehovah: and the meat-offering thereof shall be two tenth-deals of fine flour, mingled with oil; an offering made by fire unto Jehovah for a sweet savor." It is clearly then a question of Christ only. For here we have the two great offerings of sweet savor: the burnt-offering and the meat-offering, both speaking of accept- arm personally in His perfection; and of a double perfection- perfection of life lived. in the meat-offering, and perfection of life given up, or death, in the burnt-offering. As usual, there was of course the accompanying drink-offering, but not a trace of anything inconsistent with the savor of rest that God found in Christ; for it is of Him, and of Him alone, that the Spirit here speaks prophetically.
I would direct your attention for a little to the next verse, and for this reason:-It helps to explain an expression in Luke 6:1, about which I dare say some here present have found difficulty, as certainly most people elsewhere. "And it came to pass on the se( and sabbath after the first that He went through the corn-fields; and His disciples plucked the ears of corn and did eat, rubbing them in their hands." What is the force of " the second sabbath after the first "? For this I fear it is of little use to send you to the commentators, for they are all at sea about it as about most real difficulties for which you want their help. Some have had recourse to a very harsh way of getting out of the difficulty, and that is cutting out the word (for in Greek it is only a single word) δευτεροπρώτω: a very dangerous principle where the Bible is concerned. One celebrated critic thus guilty repented, virtually confessing the fault by replacing it. But it is no bad moral lesson for us to have to say, " I do not know." This at least is true and lowly; and if one looks up for light, it is well, for then God can give what is lacking.
Without saying more at this time about the critics, let us look at verse 14, for it is important, and helps to clear up a phrase otherwise dark. Now it is a vital claim of piety all through Scripture that God must have His portion first, before the believer can becomingly take and enjoy his. One feels how right it is that God should be considered in the first place; it is due to Him, and true in everything; and if we do not render it, we must suffer the bitter consequence. So distinctly was this impressed on the statutes and ways of Israel, that no godly person there would have attempted to touch his corn before the first sheaf had been waved before Jehovah. How blessedly this applies to Christ, we all feel! Once Christ is the waved first- fruits, what may not follow?
For remember that Christ is a man (not only the eternal Son of God), but One who having become a man has accomplished redemption. To His resurrection the wave-sheaf pointed in type, and this for our acceptance. As man risen from the dead He goes up to heaven. He was not taken up in a merely exceptional way, as an individual like Enoch or Elijah; He was head of the new family whose sins He had borne, going up into the glory of God, accepted for man, that is, for those who believe. By man, when He was here below, we know how He was rejected and crucified; but God raised Him up from the dead, and gave Him glory, that our faith and hope might be in God.
And now the disciples were going with their Master through the corn-fields; and, being hungry, on that Sabbath according to the gracious permission of Jehovah they plucked and ate the ears of corn. Now it is said here that this particular Sabbath was " the second after the first," or second-first. How striking that this should be the first Sabbath on which it was allowable! It was of no use to show this to unbelieving Pharisees. For what did they care for the truth? Their only wish was through the disciples to damage the Lord, being blind instruments in the hand of Satan. But the Lord vindicates amply His guiltless followers. On this I need not enter, but will just explain the force of the term in question. The first Sabbath of the paschal feast was emphatically said to be a high or great day (John 19:31). And no wonder when we take in what God foresaw. But so it was also in Jewish estimate. Alas for man! It was the very day in which Christ lay in the grave, the only day, Sabbath as it was, marked by that awful crime throughout its entire evening and morning. It was only a part of the other two days, out of the three, which was reckoned day and night. On that first Sabbath, immediately before the wave-sheaf as it was, no Jew would have partaken of the corn. The day after it was the first day of the week, when the wave-sheaf was offered. The following Sabbath was "the second-first "immediately after the wave-sheaf. The one was the first, the next the second-first; because associated with it.
But why do I mention all this? Just to show how precious is Scripture to explain Scripture. Nothing else, as a general rule, can: but we need the Holy Spirit to give us it aright. The word " second-first " occurs nowhere but in this verse of Luke. We see the value of the Old Testament to understand the New, not only the New to understand the Old. Holy Scripture is inspired and profitable; yet it is a fact, as singular as it is sure, that we only begin to appreciate intelligently the Old when we are at home in the New They both go together for faith and blessing, as they ought; and the key to both is found in Christ the Savior alone, but Christ, King of Israel as well as Head of the Church and of all nations too, for we must not limit or confound His glories.

The Wave-Loaves, or Feast of Weeks: The Feasts of Jehovah

Next let us turn to the feast of verses 15 et seqq.: " And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering, seven sabbaths shall be complete." There is the peculiar expression of fullness here, such as we hear of nowhere else. This feast only is marked out by seven sabbaths intervening. It is the feast of weeks, but among the Hellenists, or Greek-speaking Jews, the number fifty, as is well known, has given the name to this feast, which is therefore called " Pentecost." What then was fulfilled when the day of Pentecost was fully come? The Father made good His promise, that incomparable promise of which the Lord Himself had said, " It is expedient for you that I go away." What could outweigh the blessedness of His presence with His disciples On earth? The gift of the Comforter, not merely gifts but Himself baptizing them, no longer in hope but accomplished in fact.
Therefore they were told on that day to offer a new meat- offering. I daresay you are all familiar with the repugnance that many, believers even, have to looking at the Church as a new thing. They 'like to think of it as that which has always been and which shall always go on till eternity. Yet it is remarkable that not only does Paul give it the name of the "one new man," but Moses here calls it a "new meat-offering?" There was a meat-offering before, unambiguously shadowing Christ, as here a man devoted to God's service. Here was something "new" on the day of Pentecost. What did " the new meat-offering" mean? I leave it to yourselves, to your own conscience and intelligence: the answer is so certain that one need not say more about it. At that day began here below a thing so new that it was entirely without precedent.
Again, in verse 17, we hear of " two wave-loaves." Mark. the association with Christ. He was the wave-sheaf, and He alone: these were wave-loaves, and there were to be two. Do you ask if it be not said that the Church was a mystery hid for ages and generations? How then can it be thus typified here? My answer is, God took care, though giving this type, not to reveal the mystery. He did show some important truths that meet in the mystery, but never disclosed itself. For instance, if He had meant to reveal it in this type, He would (as it appears to me, if I may reverently so speak), have spoken of " one loaf." Certainly, when the mystery was revealed, it was marked as "one new man," " one body," etc.; and in the sign of the Lord's Supper we have, not two loaves, but one bread or one loaf as one body The time then had not come to reveal the mystery, for Christ had not been rejected nor redemption as yet wrought. Consequently the Spirit of God has only given us here the witness of our association with Him what may be called a shadow, not the very image. The symbol was plain in the one loaf when the Church began.
I am aware that some excellent men have supposed the two loaves to be the Jew and the Gentile; but it seems to me incorrect. Νo doubt ecclesiastical history will tell you as much; but I do not believe men but God. Ecclesiastical history may assure us that Peter and Paul founded two churches at Rome; but we know that the church at Rome was founded by neither apostle, and indeed by no apostle. It is perfectly certain from Scripture that the saints in Rome were gathered long before an apostle went there; and it is very hard to learn on what ground they ever went there, except as prisoners of the Lord. Peter may have been crucified there; Paul may have gone to prison and to death there; but as to founding the Roman Church, they never did, and no claim is put in for any other apostle.
Further, in the Book of the Acts, so called, we have the fullest evidence of the care then taken to avoid having two churches anywhere. When Philip went down to Samaria, though people were converted and baptized, there was no church formed till the apostles Peter and John went down. Thus the link was kept up with the church in Jerusalem in the most careful manner. Of laying on of hands we hear not in Jerusalem, there being no necessity for it that day: in Samaria there was, or there might have been ground taken for an independent church, of which there is no trace in Scripture. Geographically there may be ever so many churches, but there is only one church of God, only one communion recognized on earth. I know there are persons exceedingly sore as to that point: it is usual when people feel their weakness. What they need to see is that it is no question of opinion or will, but of submission to God and His word.
I say then, the two wave-loaves do not mean two churches, a Jewish and a Gentile: the very worst notion possible, one may add, as it would have kept up the old distinction; while the very essence of the Gospel, as well as of the one body, is to break all this down forever, as well as to save, in Christ.
When God gives a witness, His regular way is by at least " two." So we read " that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established." When there was to be a full witness, and not a barely valid or sufficient testimony, there were three. So the Lord was three days in the grave; there was the fullest witness to His death. Two witnesses were necessary. And so it will be by and by, when things come to a serious pass for the Lord in Jerusalem. There will be " His two witnesses:" not that I understand this to be said numerically, but according to the figure of adequacy. Here Christ was risen-the wave-sheaf. What witness was given next of the power of His resurrection? Ourselves, as the two wave- loaves. The Christian company are witnesses, not to the law of God like Israel, but to His grace in Christ risen from the dead. Such is the contrast that Paul brings out in 2 Cor. 3, where he speaks of our having Christ written on us. He takes particular pains to show that it is not on tables of stone. He leaves this to the Jew, who, without doubt, was called to be a witness to the law of God, as the Christian is to a dead and risen Christ in the power of the Spirit.
The wave-loaves, we see, were to be of fine flour baken with leaven. Here are two constituents in the types, so opposed to each other that one who knew their use elsewhere might wonder what to think of them here. Fine flour!—why, that is like Christ, pure, without sin; and leaven!-that is like ourselves, naturally corrupt and corrupting; and is not this just what Scripture teaches? Yet there is where so many find a difficulty about the two. natures; but really I am unable to find an excuse for their want of light as to both Scripture and themselves. I do not think that Christians ever so young in truth should find it hard to believe that they have two natures within them, one craving after what is evil and old habits of self, the other delighting in the will of God and loving what is of Christ. We do not need to go to Epistles, like those to the Romans, Corinthians, or Galatians: here we have the type wrought out that the wayfarer may not err. I know that a short time ago some zealous folk came over from America to preach up that the Christian might be a perfect being without any sin. Moses refutes it all. Here we have two seemingly contradictory things mingled in what typifies Christians-fine flour and leaven. Experience tallies with it. Not that there is the least excuse for sin; but sin is there, set out by leaven, not at work but baked in the bread.
Thus we see how truth all hangs together, and from first to last God only speaks perfect truth; and man, without Him, can only find out and utter what is not true in spiritual things. Our part in the things of God is not to theorize, but to believe. But the Spirit is as necessary to the understanding of the word, as the word is the necessary material for the Spirit to use. Yet I am sure that one safely finds the truth not as a student, but as a believer. God is dealing with the heart and conscience. You cannot separate real growth in the truth from the moral state of the soul: if we essay it, we may appear to get on very fast in learning the Bible, but it is to be feared that the next step will be a fall.
Again, in verse 18, we read, " And ye shall offer with the bread seven iambs, without blemish, of the first year; and one young bullock, and two rams: they shall be for a burnt-offering unto Jehovah." The Christian should have the sense of complete acceptance before our God and Father; and even this is not all. In verse 19, " Then ye shall sacrifice one kid of the goats for a sin-offering, and two lambs of the first year for a sacrifice of peace-offerings." In the case of the wave-sheaf, as we saw, there was enjoined a burnt-offering and a meat-offering. It is just the same here: the church by grace has the same acceptance as Christ had in Himself. The object of redemption was that we might be even now as completely free from charge of sin before God as the blessed Savior; but He in His own perfection, we in virtue of His work for us. Nothing can be plainer than the type, unless it be the divine explanation in the New Testament. Consequently we have the same figures and similar language used; but now we come to a different thing, for there is a most striking difference. With the wave-loaf there was to be a peace-offering and also a sin-offering; there was none in the case of Christ. In Him was no sin. It is not merely that Christ never sinned, but in Him was no sin; and I particularly press this. He never had a sinful nature, else He must have required a sin-offering for Himself. But it was absolutely needful that an offering for sin should be essentially sinless. And again, when it was a question of Him or of His person, peace-offerings have no place. The peace-offering was when communion was restored, or in communion; but it followed the sin-offering of course. The application is to us and not to Christ.
On another word of the Spirit I must be brief. It is verse 22: "And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not make clean riddance of the corners of thy field." What is the meaning of this? Does it not seem rather singular that, after the two wave-loaves have disappeared from the scene, good corn should be found still in "thy field?" The wave-loaves, we all agree, mean the Christian body. Some may go farther back than others, but none deny that they are Christians at any rate. How comes it, when these are gone, that we hear of grain left in the corners of the field? Can the wave-loaves typify all saints? Do you not see that such an instance as this proves that there will be true believers on the earth after the church has disappeared? There will be here below good corn. Of course they are not members of the one body; but God has other purposes, and purposes both for the Jew and Gentile; as here some corn was to be left for the poor and the stranger. The Apocalyptic saints may illustrate this-saints during the last week of Daniel's Seventy, after we see the elders in heaven.
To-morrow, if the Lord will, I hope to enter on the revelation of what is entirely future. We have had the past, and the present too, before us. This last verse touches on the cut-off week in the future, but it does not develope the great and distinct plans which God has unrolled that we may learn in the closing feasts.

The Feasts of the Future: The Feasts of Jehovah

EV 23: 23‒23:44{)THE last portion of the chapter which occupied us was (save verse 22) the feast of weeks, a distinct type of God's dealings with the Christian calling. It is hardly possible that any man possessing the slightest claim to the name of believer should question the fact. That is, the feast tallied to the very day with God's sending down the Holy Spirit, and beginning to gather together His children. No doubt they all were Jews at first, but along with it went this remarkable peculiarity: they were Jews that spoke every language under heaven; Jews that spoke not only the language of Canaan, but the tongues of the Gentile world. Surely this was a most significant fact! But more than that: not only were such brought in, but Jews of Palestine, yea of Galilee, were employed by the power of the Holy Ghost to address them in all sorts of languages never before learned. The miracle showed the widely-flowing grace of God that was coming and to come out. It was not as yet that all creation, groaning in bondage, was to be delivered, but the whole of it under heaven was to hear the gospel. Hence the power of the Holy Ghost enabled the unlettered fishermen of Galilee thus to address their fellow-men in the language of every land into which the judgment of God had scattered them. Besides a gathering power to Christ as a center, grace was meeting men in the variety of tongues to which the judgment of God had doomed them at Babel. For it needs no reasoning to prove that God's work at Pentecost was not merely to save sinners. Those who say so have a most superficial idea of the great work done that day. Undoubtedly salvation was going on, and it was a new fact. Salvation before this was only held out in promise. Now the promise was accomplished. Clearly then those who suppose salvation to be no more than promised do not understand the immense step God has taken in His ways. It is really because of the low estimate they have, not perhaps of Christ, but of His work. The root of the mischief lies there; it may seem a distant point, but, when approached, it will always be found to be an inadequate view of redemption. There is not the reception of God's testimony within. Of course I am speaking here of soul-salvation, as we hear in I. Pet. 1.: "Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls." The salvation of the body is not come yet; the salvation of the soul is as complete as it ever can be. This is Christianity, in fact; which comes in after the work of Christ was done, to save the soul before He again comes to save the body. It is exactly within that interval that we find ourselves now.
But there is another thing besides salvation, and that is the kingdom of God in mystery, for it is not yet manifested. The Lord Jesus is exalted, but not in a public manner. He is not yet on His own throne, but on His Father's. Thus, while there is now a kingdom of God, it is of course in a mysterious way with its own distinctive principles accordingly. None who bear His name can escape the responsibility of such a place of privilege; while those who are in the secret by the Spirit suffer with Him now, as they walk in grace and will be glorified together.
Besides salvation and the kingdom, there is a still more wondrous work going on at the same time-the calling of the church. Let me warn you against confounding these things. This confusion has been one of the early causes of the ruin of Christendom, and essentially characterizes popery, which could not subsist without it. Papists abuse the idea of the kingdom to get earthly power. But it is gross ignorance of the word of God. The Lord Jesus always draws a marked distinction between the church and the kingdom, as in Matt. 16:18.
These three things then go on now: first, the salvation of the soul; secondly, the kingdom of God, or of heaven, as the case may be, which differ somewhat but are substantially the same great fact; and thirdly also, the church, the body of Christ. This last was in a general way intimated in the portion of the chapter we had before us under the figure of the two wave-loaves.
We saw, further, that in the corner of the field corn was to be left. I do not mean by this that members of Christ will be left behind by the Lord when He comes for His own, but that God's Spirit will work and that believers will be called after the church is gone. They will be found in that little interval that follows in the last or seventieth week of Daniel.
If any one wishes to trace the history of this transitional space, the details of it will be found in the central parts of the Revelation and the latter half of Daniel. There may be read the full answer to the question of the corn which is to be left in the corners of the field.

The Feast of Trumpets: The Feasts of Jehovah

Having given this brief summary of what was before us in the central portion of the chapter, we find ourselves in presence of an entirely new scene from verse 24: " Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, In the seventh month in the first day of the month, shall ye have a sabbath, a memorial of blowing of trumpets." So far from the gospel being a continuous work to the end of the world, as many suppose, we see here that the Lord will begin a fresh testimony with a suited instrumentality for this new work when the church is gone. Observe that it is said here " in the seventh month: " this was the last month in which Jehovah instituted a feast. He brings to a completion the circle of His ways on the earth and for Israel.
In the very beginning then of this closing period of God's dealings, we have what? " A memorial of blowing of trumpets." God then is inaugurating a fresh testimony. The trumpet is always a figure of God's intervention to bring in some signal change. It may be for judgment, as we find in some cases; or it may be a distinct testimony in grace, as we know in other cases. It is clearly a loud summons from God to people on the earth. And here we find it is not merely a blowing of trumpets, but " a memorial " of blowing of trumpets. It is a recall of what had long passed out of memory. It is God calling to mind what had once been before Him, but long dead and gone. What can this be? It is the recall of His ancient people on the earth. The Jew is again brought into remembrance before God. No wonder that there should be such "a memorial of blowing of trumpets!" Hundreds, one might say thousands, of years had passed since they had stood before Him as His people. The return from Babylon was only a partial work:, as a whole, Israel never returned but were dispersed all over the world. Where was the bulk of them? They were lost among the °Gentiles; and so to this day they have remained in a peculiar condition, unlike any other since the world began. They are in all countries without possessing their own, and yet a people; they are without a king, and yet a people; without a prince, and yet a people; without the true God, without a false god, and yet a people; a standing rebuke to the infidel, yet largely, deeply infidel themselves!
But that very people are yet to return to their land, and seek Jehovah their Lord and David their king; and shall fear Jehovah and His goodness in the latter days. But what does God do in the first place? He awakens them. The day of shadows is gone forever. The cross of Christ has closed unrealities. By the power of His resurrection the Christian is introduced into the new creation. The old is gone, the new come; and before God we have our place in Christ. When this work is finished, grace will begin to act in Israel, and they will be awakened.
Nothing more distinctly proves that God will have done with the Christian; for the gospel goes out to the Gentiles (though to the Jew first), and in the church, as in Christ, there is neither Jew nor Greek. The Feast of Trumpets is God's taking up Israel afresh to awaken them. Undeniably then this feast is after and quite distinct from Passover and Pentecost in which we have our interest; and the first thing disclosed in it is God's loud summons to a people who once had a place before Him and again come into remembrance for mercy, not judgment. It is evident that this could not consistently apply to the gospel that has been going out since Christ's death and resurrection. We have had our sacrifice and call to practical holiness and the gift of the Spirit long ago. But when God has done with our blessing, the chapter reveals that in the seventh month dead Israel is to be raised from the grave by God's trumpet, as Ezekiel predicted long after (chap. 37). As this is clearly a new work, let us trace what light other scriptures throw upon it.
Let me take you to the Psalms. There you will find how truly they and the prophets agree with this figure in the law. See Psalm-81. There is a plain enough testimony as to its force: " Sing aloud unto God our strength; make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob. Take a psalm: and bring hither the timbre], the pleasant harp with the psaltery. Blow up the trumpet in the new moon, in the time appointed, on our solemn feast day." If men were not prejudiced, none would deny the application to Israel. The moon, that luminary which wanes and loses her brightness, once more renews her light. How strikingly is this to be verified in the Jew! You could not say it of the church or Christendom. The apostasy of the Gentile is fatal. Take Babylon; and what does Scripture teach as to this? Babylon never recovers the old light; Babylon is the corrupt woman that assumes the credit of being the bride whilst false to Christ, a mere harlot with the kings of the earth; and her end will be judgment and destruction: no renovation for her; no new moon shining out in fresh strength and brightness. Babylon will never rise again. Destruction is determined, and determined from the Lord God, but by the hand of the revived Roman empire and its satellite kings, avenging those she had corrupted too long. It is quite different with Israel, which never had the. privileges of the church. The Jew was under the law: what did he know of being under grace as we are? By and by Israel will be put under the new covenant, but this cannot take place till the trumpets have blown once more, and the new moon is shining, as we hear in the Psalm, the new moon at the time appointed. The language is suited for Israel, and not for the church. They sing and make a joyful noise to the God of Jacob. Why confound this with the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ? Why deny their hope of mercy?
It is a mischievous perversion to apply everything of the sort (the blessing at least, not the curse) to the church. Are we not blessed in heavenly places? We are entitled to take delight in these promises, but then it is not truly to enjoy them if we appropriate them to ourselves. Let us rejoice to know them as yet in store for other people, even Israel, in the latter days.
If I know any converted, am I to be jealous of their. blessing? Am I not to rejoice that the grace of God that visited me is thus going out to many others? that it will embrace a larger circle by and by? So here, when we see in the Scriptures that poor guilty Israel is to emerge from the grave, from their long lasting and dense darkness of unbelief, why wish it to be for the church? Indeed it is to lower our character of blessing from -heaven to earth. Let us rather rejoice that at length. God will awaken His people and accomplish all His purpose in them here below.
And here let me briefly call your attention to a passage on this subject very poorly rendered in our translation. It is Luke 2:32,. "A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of Thy people Israel." It should be really "A light for revelation of [the] Gentiles." I understand this to mean that Christ is a light for bringing Gentiles into divine view, and that it is accomplishing now, besides His being the glory of Israel by and by. The Gentiles, instead of being in darkness as they once were in the ways of God, have, as privilege and responsibility, the true testimony of God. Not before the millennium will He be the glory of Israel. The Gentiles were once in the dark as the Jew is now; ere long the Lord will come for the glory of His people Israel. Luke's is the only Gospel where we have the as well as to save, in Christ thus viewed present light for revealing the Gentiles and as future glory for Israel. I conceive this to be the true interpretation of the passage, and, when saying so, I do not mean in a half sort of way. It is important we should seize the intended real bearing of the word of God. We must not be too hasty in assuming it; but when we know that we have got it, let us hold it fast and use it for the Lord:
The eighty-first Psalm then speaks of the blowing of trumpets distinctly in connection with Israel. No one doubts there is the figure of a trumpet for ourselves-in general as in 1 Cor. 14., or precisely as in 1 Cor. 15; but then it is never in our case a memorial of blowing of trumpets. Thus the " last trump " is a blessed and solemn word as to us. What is its connection? It was a figure taken from the military usages of the Romans, then familiar to everybody. We must remember that the Romans were at that time masters of the world, and that people knew too well what their legions were. Few and distant were the places where men did not feel the grinding iron bondage of that imperial power. I think it is Josephus who gives an account of their encampment, and lets us know the various and successive signals given for the different movements of the army. But finally there was the "last trump;" and, the moment this sounded, they all moved off. This may serve to explain the Spirit's application of the phrase to the final summons of His people for meeting the Lord in the air.
It may be well to look at another Scripture, Isa. 27:12: "And it shall come to pass on that day, that Jehovah shall beat off from the channel of the river into the stream of Egypt, and ye shall be gathered one by one, 0 ye children of Israel." This is the gathering not of believers to heaven, but of the children of Israel to their land. " And it shall come to pass in that day, that the great trumpet shall be blown; and they shall come which were ready to perish in the land of Assyria and the outcasts in the land of. Egypt, and shall worship Jehovah in the holy mount at Jerusalem." Is not the application evident and sure? "Ready to perish" would not apply to the gathering of the church to heaven. We will be glorified in that day-a very different thing from their being ready to perish. It is clear that, just before God interferes, the people are to be in the last extremity of trial, being set upon by all their enemies.
As long as Israel is unnoticed or chastised by God, the Gentiles can be peaceable; but directly there is any movement for good going on, and God is working to make Israel the head and not the tail, the old enmity will soon follow. In that day, then, they shall be gathered by God to Jerusalem. It is not-Jerusalem above, where our portion is by grace; but Jerusalem on earth, where Jehovah in due time shall reign according to His goodness and promises many. This awakening of Israel then is clearly what answers to the feast of Trumpets.
It is written in Matt. 24:29, " Immediately after the tribulation of these days"-this may illustrate their being ready to perish-" shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken; and then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven. And then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And He shall send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of the earth to the other." The context proves that His elect here are of Israel, not elect Christians. This remark may not satisfy some, who, whenever they see any good. thing held out in Scripture, instantly assume that it must be for the church. But we can afford to rejoice in the future gathering of Israel. Have our brethren learned the " parable of the fig tree"? What means the fig tree? Not more surely is the rose the emblem of one part of our land and the thistle of another I could name, than the fig tree was similarly used of Israel. " When its branch is yet tender and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh." They have had their long winter, and now the Sun of righteousness is rising with healing on His wings. TM's' may suffice to confirm the meaning of the Feast of Trumpets.

The Day of Atonement: The Feasts of Jehovah

Next we come to a still more solemn feast, the great Day of Atonement, from verse 27: " Also 'on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement." And it is well that we should observe how events are crowding on during this eventful month. God is finishing His work on the earth. He is going to put out the evil that had so long ravaged among men, and to bring His ancient people into fullness of blessing.
On this day Israel are to be brought under the atonement of Christ. For first let me remind you how impossible it is to think that this day can be for us in the chronological scheme of the feasts. We have seen Christ as our sacrifice in the Passover long ago, and do not want it a second time here: to repeat the work for us would be to impeach its everlasting value. It is really the work of Christ applied to Israel. They had the testimony to the Lamb; but they refused it. We meanwhile by grace have been brought into the blessing. Are they to be left out? Assuredly for a time only. The day of Atonement in the seventh month, so long following the Passover, indicates, not that the work is to be done over again, but that there is to be a second application of that work, and of course to a different people. Do you ask me for Scripture proof of this? My answer is John 11:51,52: "And this spake he not of himself; but, being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation; and not for that nation only, but that also He should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad." In this passage then we have most clearly put this double aspect of the work of Christ; but " that nation," the Jews, refused it, for it was to the Jew first that the offer was made. Next, you notice, it is not only for that but to gather in one the children of God. They are both saved and also gathered into one. It is the church baptized by the Holy Spirit. But then there remains for Israel their blessing by and by. It is suspended for the present; but the precious blood, the death, of the Lord Jesus in all its efficacy cannot fail for them also-for the very people who of old refused it. How patient the grace of God On the tenth of the seventh month, in God's time, the day will surely come; and you may find the most sensible difference in the language employed here and that which is used of us: " And ye shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire unto Jehovah." You do not find such words as these under the paschal lamb; and no wonder. For God will make them feel their sins, as He could not be unobservant of their long unbelief; and when their day of blessing comes, do you think they will be insensible? Is it conceivable that Israel will regard themselves as other sinners? Certainly not. They will say, We are the guiltiest people on earth. The Messiah, the Christ of God, was sent to us, and we refused Him. He was not yours yet you bowed to Him. It is the Messiah rejected by Israel who is become the suffering yet exalted Son of man, and the Gentiles do hear Him.
Joseph rejected by his brethren was in another land exalted to the throne; and there too he had a bride unknown to his brethren, while next to the one who set him in the highest place. And when the true Joseph presents himself to the sons of Israel, will they not afflict their souls as Joseph's brethren did when the house of Pharaoh heard? There never was so genuine a mourning as this for the seed of Jacob. And so yet more, yea incomparably, will it be in the day that is hastening. And it could not be otherwise, if God wrought real repentance as He will in Israel. The day of atonement bears the distinct mark of what will only, or at least most fully, apply to His people in that future day, when God's plans for the earth are being completed.
But this is not all. In verse 28 we read, "And ye shall do no work in that same day; for it is a day of atonement to make an atonement for you before Jehovah your God." Could this be said so fittingly and emphatically to any other people? Were they not the people of all others who boasted of their works, and so, going about to establish their own righteousness, "stumbled at the stumbling-stone"? Acceptable works are found only in believers. We know that those who have the Spirit of God working in them really show forth the fruits of the Spirit and do not boast. Where all is felt to be of grace, how could they boast? Others who slight faith and consequently talk of the law do in fact nothing. The righteousness of the law is fulfilled in those who are under grace, not law. The Jew boasted but stumbled over the lowly Nazarene, the crucified Savior; but it will not be so in that day, when the reality of faith will not only work repentance but exclude pretension to work. Not that works will not follow, but the day of atonement will shut out everything, if I may so say, but Christ, their propitiation and substitute; so that their self-loathing will be as complete as their abandonment of their own works. The very fact of their now believing what God had done for them in Christ makes them ashamed of the least reference to any works of their own.
There are the two effects: on the one hand, affliction of soul in the confession of their sins; and, on the other hand, no mingling any work of their own with that which Christ suffered for them before God. In verse 29 you see the same sentiment repeated: " For whatsoever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people. And whatsoever soul it be that doeth any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people."
Again, in verse.32: " It shall be unto you a sabbath of rest, and ye shall afflict your souls." The two things, no work and affliction of soul, mark this day of atonement. How blessed when Israel know and feel this! And here again I may appeal to other parts of Scripture. Let me refer you now to one of the
prophets in connection with this day of atonement, Zech. 12:9-14: "And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem." You see the nations are now jealous and hostile to Israel. "And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications." Is not this the day of atonement? " And they shall look upon Me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for Him." It is a day of afflicting their souls: " As one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his first born." " In that day there shall be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon. And the land shall mourn, every family apart, and their wives apart." Conscience leads one to be alone with God, that confession may be true and deep. Such is the effect of real Spirit-wrought sorrow; for the conscience, when it is thus really reached by the Spirit of God, always isolates itself-it makes the soul desire to go alone to God. To whom alas! could I tell out honestly all I am? What good would it do to any one else? It might do harm. It is to God then we must go, and to God we must confess. And it is good for the soul; for God wants sterling honesty; He wants guile to be taken away; and this is accomplished by His own grace. It is the day of atonement, when Israel hide not like Adam, but their sins are poured out into the bosom of God.
" Every family apart." So close, so real, is the work that it is said, even " their wives apart:" the nearest and closest relationships are apart, that there may be now, for the first time, " truth in the inward parts." And what are the families named? "The family of the house of David apart, and their wives apart; the family of the house of Nathan apart, and their wives apart." Why David and why Nathan? Once there was a time when the king trembled as he stood thoroughly convicted, and the faithful prophet was strengthened of God to convict him " Thou art the man." Now what a change I It is no humbled king nor convicting prophet. All are convicted, and so profoundly filled with the sense each of his own sins, that they feel thoroughly the need to be alone with God. It is not only real but deep work; it is not the mere effect of feeling or sympathy fed by a weeping crowd. They go alone, each before God, that all may be out and clear. And surely this should be a word of warning as to the danger in these days of multitudinous meetings, revivals, etc. I do not say it to weaken any one's confidence, but that all may see how momentous it is for souls to get alone with God as to their sins.
Nor is this the only picture; we have two others to complete the scene. " The family of the house of Levi apart, and their wives apart; the family of Shimei apart, and their wives apart." The margin gives " Symeon " as the alternative, and so does the oldest version, the Septuagint. Of course there is a difference of opinion as to this as in all things; but it is a common thing in Scripture to find two names for the same person, as, for instance, Paul and Saul, Silas and Silvanus, Jude and Thaddeus. But if we accept the view of the Greek translators, they were two sons of Jacob of painful notoriety in their earliest history-. It was revenge then brought them together. No doubt the Gentile was guilty of gross wrong, and dishonored their sister; but their wrath was cruel, and their revenge as deceitful as outrageous, and Jacob was ashamed of his unworthy sons, who had been united in deadly purpose under the guise of religion. But now they have found the Savior, or rather the Savior has found them, and they are confessing each his own sins. Thousands of years had passed over; but here are the descendants of these two fathers in Israel bowing down before the Lord who died for them. This is the true meaning of the Day of Atonement as applicable here to Israel; and let us rejoice that God will extend thus His grace, through that blessed Savior, even to guilty Israel, kept for this and other great ends of God.

The Feast of Tabernacles: The Feasts of Jehovah

Then begins the last feast in verse 34: " Speak unto the children of Israel; saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto Jehovah." For seven days! It is to be remarked that we have had nothing about seven days since the feast of Unleavened Bread, and this, as I showed, signified our walking in sincerity and truth, in Christian holiness, the true import of that feast, because Christ our Passover was sacrificed for us. It is the whole course of those who are under the pilgrimage of grace. Now here are seven other days for a different purpose; and what are they? Seven days of glory on the earth. This may startle some; for there are very many Christians who, when they think of glory, always connect it with heaven. So they speak of souls having gone to glory at death. Now I am very far from denying that the Christian is destined to heavenly glory. We do belong distinctly to Christ on high. We depart at death to be with Him. But I am far from thinking, with a valued countryman of yours, that the glorified Church is to live and reign on the earth.
It is not in a likeness of heaven we are to dwell forever; we are going to heaven itself. The Father's house does not mean the earth, however sublimated or etherealized, but heaven, and the brightest part of heaven. It is not some distant corner or outskirt of glory; it is where the Son abides, where the Father's love satisfied itself in receiving the Son. There shall we be with Him, in the Father's house of many mansions. " And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am there ye may be also." It is- where He is. The portion of the Christian is Christ in the Father's house; so we shall be ever with the Lord. He would not tell us so if it would raise our hopes too high. He did so tell us that He might inspire us with the same expectation that filled His own breast. The bride is to be with the Bridegroom. I reject the notion therefore, as unfounded, that the scene of our glory is to be en the earth; and, no matter what the piety of men who have such low views, I reject them as doubly injurious. They deny the Church's glory to be distinctively heavenly, and they do not leave room for Israel's future glory according to promise on the earth. It is really therefore a mistake of grave consequence, which affects our interpretation of all the. Bible, and confuses the entire scheme of God's ways. Hear what the New Testament teaches: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ." We are blessed there in title already in Christ as we shall be there in fact with Him after His coming for us.
But in the portion before us we have another thing brought out. Here it cannot mean our going to heaven, for we do not speak of " days" there. It is one eternal day in that sphere of unchanging light and blessedness; and by a figure it may be called very well the " day of eternity." Indeed this is the way the apostle Peter does speak in the last verse of his Second Epistle: " To Him be glory, both now and to the day of eternity." But glory will assuredly come to the earth. Thus: " Arise, shine; for thy light is come," etc. Where is that? In heaven? No; Zion is here on the earth; really it was that mountain on which the king's palace was built, and now significant of grace yet to build up the broken house of Israel, when God will give them the true David!
Let me draw your attention here to two schools of theology, as the truth in question is of practical moment as well as doctrinal. It may be instructive to see how both fail and come short of what the Holy Spirit reveals for the glory of God. As to this then we find these two schools in opposition. One says that the scene of future glory is to be the earth, where Christ died and God has wrought so graciously, and as to which He has promised such glorious things. Fully do I admit this; but their inference as to our being glorified there is unsound. The other school holds that heaven will be the only scene of glory, and this so exclusively as almost, if not quite, to forget the body and its future resurrection from the grave. They are in danger of thinking only of the soul, and of heaven as a place of pure spirit, which, I submit, is a poor substitute for the Christian's hope, and not at all what the word of God teaches. It is quite true and blessed that even now the separated spirit goes to be with Christ; and no believer should seek to weaken this truth. A recently- converted robber was to be that day with Him in paradise. It is lamentable to know how little this is believed by modern theologians; and I doubt not that their feebleness here is due to their scanty knowledge of Christ and redemption. But this intermediate blessedness is not resurrection; though departed saints, when risen, shall be, as now, in the "paradise of God." As the paradise of Adam was the brightest spot on earth, so the " paradise of God " is the brightest spot in heaven. Sinful man was cast out of the one; believing man is received into the other. Christ was the first fruits, as was due to Him, the Son. and Savior; afterward those that are Christ's at His coming.
But there is, another thing, the kingdom of God, which has " earthly things," and for these needs new birth (John 3), as well as for " heavenly things." So it will neither be heaven alone, nor the earth alone, but both. (Compare Eph. 1:10 and Col. 1:20.) In Scripture faith finds no real difficulty, and is far larger than theology, which is invariably short of the truth of God. Theology is an attempt on the part of man to reduce the word of God to a science, and a science for man, converted or not, to learn. No wonder that this is always a total failure, as it deserves to be. You cannot squeeze what has life into this iron vice of theirs without destroying its strength and tissues and beauty. Both heaven and earth are to be under Christ, the distinct but united spheres of His reign to God's glory. In the fullness of the times God is going to gather all things under Christ; not all persons, for this will never be. Alas! those who despise the Lord Jesus will, at the end, be cast into the lake of fire. But all things, the groaning creation, guilty of no sin but suffering from the sin of man, will be delivered through the victory of the Second Man. For this we and it are waiting.
It is not true, therefore, that the earth is the only scene of glory, but also heaven. I might prove this from other Scriptures besides Ephesians and Colossians. But I would remind you that it is no good sign to require many passages. One, if plain, is conclusive. Who would admire the state of soul that, when one Scripture is given, asks for another? Even if you had only to do with a man's word, do you wish him to repeat the same thing half-a-dozen times over? In fact, if he were to do so, it ought rather to arouse suspicions. But, if such is the case with man, is it not most dishonoring to God to look forever so many assurances from Him 2 I grant that in certain cases He may present the same thing in various forms, but this is only pure grace in consideration of the weakness of man.
But I direct you to Psa. 73:24, and I do so in order to clear out a singular mistake of our translators. There we read these words, a favorite text with many: "Thou shalt guide me with Thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory:" very good Christian doctrine; but is it the object of the Psalm to teach anything of the sort? Let us be subject to Scripture. You see the word "to " is inserted. And what is the reason for it? "To" would require authority, for it cannot be inserted or left out in this sort of way. The truth is that our translators could not understand the meaning of the words as they stand, especially as it was taken for granted that the Psalm was speaking of what we Christians want for our comfort and so they thought it must mean, " Thou shalt guide me with Thy counsel, and afterward receive me [to] glory." They never thought of the peculiar hopes of Israel, and so they could not find out the meaning. It is confusion if you apply these to the Christian. But then they did not know anything worth mentioning of God's ways for the future, when Christ shall reign over the earth.
Now, let me tell you, people are learning to translate accurately, whether they understand the meaning or not. This may not be pleasant, still it is more honest; and thus grace may the sooner use some one else to help them to the meaning. But, further, I may say that one of our American kinsmen has lately brought out a new translation of the Psalms. The late Dr. J. A. Alexander, of Princeton, was a man not to be despised. His book on the Psalms, as a version, is respectable, though some of us would think its exegesis rather dark. He did not understand what he was writing about; yet he was a scholar, and translates uprightly his text. But let me add, that being a scholar will never enable one to understand the Scripture. The one and only means of understanding it is by the Holy Ghost, who gives us God's mind in it. If it is the church in the New Testament, I must see it in its relation to the Head; if it is Israel in the law or the Psalms, I must see them as they stand related to their Messiah.
Now the late Dr. Alexander never saw the true distinction between Israel and the Church, but being honest and competent, though he did not know what the passage meant, he translated it as it really stands, " In or by Thy counsel Thou wilt guide me, and after glory Thou wilt take me." Now what is the meaning of this? The last clause is obscure, he says.
The Christian, no doubt, is received now, and will go up at the coming of Christ to heavenly glory; but His, dealings with Israel are quite different. He will come in glory to the destruction of their enemies, and bring them in deep penitence to -Himself; -and then they will be received-as His people before the universe. This will only be "after glory." The glory will have shone first. Take Saul of Tarsus for an instance, though he was a pattern not only of the Jew but of the Gentile. All will remember that he had a vision of the Lord in glory, and after that he was brought into acceptance before God.
When we see this, it helps us to understand how the children of Israel will be brought into their blessedness. There were to be seven days of suffering grace, as we have now (that is quite a distinct thing), and seven days of glory in the age to come. This will be the feast of Tabernacles in its ordinary character for Israel on earth.
Then, further, verse 39: "Also on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when ye have gathered in the fruit of the land, ye shall keep a feast unto Jehovah seven days." When they had gathered in the fruit of the land, when the harvest was past, and the vintage over; what is the meaning of this? That judgment will have taken its course. The harvest is that character of judgment where the Lord discriminates the good from the bad. The vintage is where He will trample down wicked religion unsparingly. It is the infliction of divine judgment, and mark, it is of the living: the judgment of the dead is at the end of the kingdom, which is not spoken of here. This is the judgment of the quick at the beginning of the kingdom.
Now we get something further (verse 39): " Ye shall keep a feast unto Jehovah seven days: on the first day shall be a sabbath, and on the eighth day shall be a sabbath." It is not only that there is a complete term of glory as we are now going through a complete term of grace. In one feature, we may see, the feast of Tabernacles stands distinct from all the others; and what is that? The eighth day. There has been no mention of this in the other feasts. The seven days we saw were glory for the earth; but there is the "eighth day too." It is heavenly and eternal glory! So it is not "days " now, but this one " day," " the eighth day," and therefore it has a beginning, but it will never have an end.
We have seen then in this chapter-first, the purpose. of God generally sketched; next, the mighty work of the Lord Jesus, with the holy call it involves on all blessed by it, and the witness to Christ's resurrection in those risen with Him But the application of that work is first to the Gentiles now called in. By and by, too, Israel will be awakened and confess their sins, when the days of glory dawn on earth, and not only this, but with a glance at that which is heavenly and eternal in the eighth day.
May the Lord bless His own word, so that you may be simple and clear and wise in the truth unto salvation! And may you have your faith strengthened as you see how God has given a complete cycle of His ways in one of the most ancient books of the Bible. When the theological professors of our day are misusing their position to give currency to the cavils of unbelief, which have lost much of their acceptance even in freethinking Germany, it is time for men whose fathers valued revealed truth to wake up to these insidious efforts at undermining their faith under the pretentious claim of learning and science. The best of all answers to Satan is a deepening entrance by the Holy Spirit into the truth, and an enlarged sense of that divine wisdom and grace in the word, which is as much superior to Elohistic and Jehovistic theories, or such like vanities and speculations, as the Second man is above the first. " Sanctify them by Thy word: Thy word is truth."

The Olive Tree, Fig Tree, and the Vine: The Feasts of Jehovah

THERE are three fruit-bearing trees, much esteemed and cultivated by the inhabitants of Palestine, which are fruitful in instruction for us who possess and peruse the New Testament. They are the OLIVE TREE, the FIG TREE, and the VINE. It was these of which Jothan made mention in his parable to the men of Shechem, which furnish parabolic teaching about Gentiles, Israel, and Christians. Privilege, profession, fruitfulness, such are the topics in illustration of which these trees are severally introduced.
1. The OLIVE TREE furnishes special instruction for Gentiles, as such, in the way of dispensational teaching. We meet with it once in this manner in Rom. 11, where a word of warning is given to those who are not of the race of Israel. Promises belonged to Israel as the children of Abraham (Rom. 9:4). To the covenants of promise Gentiles were strangers (Eph. 2:12). Promises there were, as has been remarked, about Gentiles, but not to them. To Abraham were they made and to his seed (Gal. 3:16). Israel, on the ground of their lineage " after the flesh," looked for the fulfillment and enjoyment of them. John the Baptist had warned them how mistaken they would find themselves, if they trusted in this matter to natural birth without being born of God. God could of the stones around them raise up children to Abraham. The warning was in vain, as far as the nation was concerned. For they rejected the One to whom the promises made to Abraham were confirmed-that One was Christ, the patriarch's seed. God, therefore, has cast them off nationally for a time, and is dealing now with Gentiles. It is of this dispensational change that Paul writes in Rom. 11, and, to illustrate it in a manner within the comprehension of his readers, makes use of the simile of an olive tree, with which those in Italy would be familiar. From this tree, a good olive tree, some of the branches have been broken off, that is all the nation of Israel, except the remnant according to the election of grace, who remain branches in the olive tree, where they had always been.
Into-this same-tree other-branches- have been grafted, taken from a wild olive tree; one which had never been brought under culture. Now these are the Gentiles, with whom God is at present dealing in sovereign goodness, brought thus outwardly into connection with Abraham, the root of promise-the root, to carry out the figure, of the olive tree. Before the cross God was dealing with Israel as the elect nation, but not directly with the Gentiles. 'Privileges belonged to the former in which the latter had no part. The Syrophoenician woman had to acknowledge that. She felt it, and she owned it. After the cross a new feature in God's dealings with man was displayed. The privileges which had marked Israel as God's special people on earth they enjoyed no longer, for they continued in unbelief. The aged Simeon had declared that the child he held in his arms would be " a light for revelation of the Gentiles," to bring them out of the obscurity in which they had hitherto been dispensationally, as those with whom God could prominently deal in goodness; and Paul teaches us this took place, when Israel for a time, as a nation, was cast off.
Advantages, then, Gentiles now possess such as they never had before the cross. The root of promise has not changed. The olive tree has not been cut down, but some branches have been broken off, and branches from a wild olive tree have been grafted in on the principle of faith. As grafted in they partake of the " root and fatness of the olive tree." Privileges are theirs, as brought into direct association with the root of promise, Abraham, the father of the faithful. What flows from the root, therefore, they share in; " of the root and fatness of the olive tree" they partake, being as Gentiles grafted in by faith into the line of promise on earth.
Now this is not salvation, for they might be "cut off." It is not church position, for church position is new both to Jews as well as to Gentiles who enjoy it. But here it is, Gentiles coming in to share the privileges on earth of those who, as faithful among the Jews, had never lost them. We say on earth, for the simile of the tree teaches us, that the position, thus illustrated, is one enjoyed on earth.
Would, then, the Gentiles continue in this privileged place? That depended upon them. "If thou continue in goodness." Have they? One must surely admit they have not. Excisions therefore, must take place. And, if the natural branches abide not in unbelief, they 'shall be grafted' into their own olive tree. The good olive tree is Israel, the root is Abraham; and the advantages Gentiles, as such, now possess, they can lose by unfaithfulness, for they stand in that place only by faith. God is now visiting the Gentiles (Acts 15:14), and the outward result of this is what we term Christendom. Privileges those possess who are part of Christendom, but these privileges entail responsibility. Could the Gentile glory then over the Jew, the branches broken off? He could not. To the Jew his natural place was in the olive tree, it was only from his sin of unbelief that he was broken off. To the Gentile it was of Divine goodness that he was there at all, grafted in on the principle of faith, to be continued there only if he abode in God's goodness. All those then who are really saved are in the olive tree, but far more than they are numbered amongst its branches. It takes in the faithful remnant of Israel. It includes all Christendom. The Gentiles, if once cut off, will never be restored. The Jews may be, and will, if they abide not in unbelief. How truly will that be felt and. confessed by and by, when that which Zech. 8:13 says, shall receive its accomplishment'
The FIG TREE suggests teaching of a different order, and was used as an illustration to a different audience. The Lord made use of it when warning Israel, and instructing His disciples (Luke 13:6-9; Matt. 21:19-21; Mark 11:12-14,20-23). Its fruit makes it of such value. If the tree is fruitless, why let it occupy the ground? Now there is one feature in the fig tree which made it so suited to depict the state of Israel. Its flowers are formed before the bursting out of its leaves. Hence the presence of leaves suggests the promise and appearance of fruit. One sees at once, then, how fit an emblem such a tree would be of Israel, who by profession were God's people, but who, nevertheless, when the Lord came, proved by rejecting Him their unfruitfulness for God. The olive tree, as an evergreen, fitly represents the continuance of the line of promise on earth, which never would end, even in appearance, during all the ages that should precede the establishment of the Kingdom of God in power upon earth. As the olive tree from its character suggests the thought of continuance, the fig tree from its habit is well adapted to illustrate profession, which should be accompanied by the proofs of fruitfulness. And if it lacks such proofs, cutting down surely the tree richly deserves. God's forbearance then with the nation of Israel till the cross, the parable of the fig tree in Luke 13 sets forth. The sentence on the barren but leaf- clothed tree on Olivet was the indication of the carrying out of the judgment against Israel, of which the Lord had previously warned the people. A tree cut down ceases to be seen by men. Israel, as an ordered nation, would cease to exist. Profession without fruitfulness will never do for God.
Turning to the VINE, we get instruction of a different character. It speaks of, and to, Christians in truth.
God had a vine, which He had brought out of Egypt: that vine was Israel (Psa. 80:8-11). A vine which is unfruitful is useless, as Ezekiel (15: 2-4) reminded his countrymen. The Lord then, in John 15, teaches His disciples that He is the true vine: hence fruitfulness in them could only be produced as they abode in Him. For those who were of the Jewish race this teaching was important: national position, a lineage after the flesh, such would not avail. They must abide in Christ to bear fruit for God:-teaching, too, this for us, useful, ' needful at all times. " I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring -forth more fruit. Nov ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: he that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples " (John 15:1-8).
When we come to the Lord's teaching about the vine, we leave dispensational truth about Gentiles and Jews, and come to that which is vitally important. But, to understand it aright we must ever remember, that the simile of a tree suggests something which is upon earth, not something about heaven. Keeping this in mind, we shall understand the bearing of what He says. He speaks of that which is seen upon earth: a branch, therefore, might be in the vine, and yet be unfruitful. But no one could be in Christ before God without being really a child of God. If we bring in standing before God when we read of the vine, we shall get all wrong. If we remember that a tree is a simile of something existing upon earth, we shall be kept right. A branch; therefore, in the vine is a professing Christian. There might be that without the person being a true believer. At the moment the Lord was speaking there was a marked illustration of it in Judas Iscariot. He was one of the twelve, appeared to be a believer, was a branch in the. vine; but his occupation at that very moment indicated that he had not abode in Christ. Mere profession, then, would not do. The Lord, however, does not stop here. He is not merely impressing on them that there must be reality and life to be fruitful; He is telling them how, and how only, they can be fruitful, viz, by abiding in Him. The curse on the fig tree showed that God would not be satisfied without-fruit. The Lord's teaching about the vine makes plain how fruitfulness can be ensured. Professors there might be, there have been, there are still. Of such, if that is all they are upon earth, the Lord speaks in verse 6; but let the reader remark He does it in language which, while pointedly showing the dreadful future of such, carefully guards against the idea of any real Christian perishing. Speaking to those who were true, He says, " Ye." Describing the barren professor, He says, "If a man," etc. There is no discouragement to the weakest believer. There is the most solemn warning for the mere professor.

Union in Incarnation, the Root Error of Modern Theology

THE subject on which I would engage the attention of your readers is one which affects the whole character and nature of Christianity, branching out into what is really infidelity on one side, and abominable heresies on the other; but held in its root principles by persons who would utterly reject both. It is found in the most highly esteemed ministers of the Free Church of Scotland and widely spread in it, in the Baptist Colleges, and taught by eminent Baptist ministers in the United States; elaborately developed in the revived energy of evangelicalism in Germany, whence it has passed in a gross Puseyite shape to the Dutch Reformed Church in the States. Its full doctrinal results were developed in Irvingism. The worst kind of infidelity is based on it, to which the German doctors approach wonderfully near.
The question is this: Was Christ in incarnation united to humanity to renew it? or is the life of believers a wholly new life, in every case, and in the case of the church, believers united by the Holy Ghost to Him glorified? Those orthodox in the main take up only the renewal of the first man; the full-blown doctrine is Christ's union with fallen man. It is a capital question; because one makes fallen man, the first Adam, that which is taken up of God for blessing as such, to which the Word therefore united Himself, and that (however sinless they may hold Christ to have been personally) in its sinful state, before redemption; the other looks upon man in the flesh as utterly rejected and lost; that Christ stood alone, though a true and very man, till He had accomplished redemption, and then, when He had accomplished it, a redemption available in justification and life to faith, before as after the cross, that a wholly new nature was given, in which man enters into the benefit of it, there being also in the case of the church actual union with Him glorified by the Holy Ghost, members of His body.
The Wesleyans have not, that I know of, the doctrine of such union of Christ with fallen humanity, but they take up in practice its effect, with the assertion of some good in fallen man, and that what is wrought in salvation. is the setting right the first Adam, not the communication of a totally new life. The German doctors agree with them in this. Without it, they say, there is no " Anknupfungspunkt," no point to which grace can attach itself. Now God does act on man's knowledge of good and evil, or conscience, but a new life is given. Christ, the last Adam becoming our life in contrast with the first, needs no " Anknupfungspunkt." Irving held that Christ, while sinless in word or deed, had a sinful human nature; lust, where the will did not consent, not being sin, as is held by Roman Catholics, Wesleyans, and a very great many others, as for example our modern perfectionists—a horrible error. The apostle Paul expressly makes sin the source of lust in Rom. 7 It is an error which makes void the tenth commandment, as he there uses it. Christ, according to Irving, by the Holy Ghost kept sin in the flesh down, and so kept all His ways holy, and was perfect, and obtained thus the Holy Ghost for us, that we may do the same. The substitution of Christ as bearing our sins, and therefore dying for us, he expressly denied (and the truth of the atonement, viewed as substitution, is involved in the question), holding that He died because of what He was as a mortal man, not because of our sins. I need not go farther into his doctrine.
Dr. Moody Stuart, late moderator of the General Assembly of the Free Church of Scotland says: "We are renewed in the whole man after the image of God," a most false presentation of what is said in Scripture, where the new man only is spoken of in Eph. 4:24, as a new creation, in Col. 3:10 as renewed in knowledge; but in both, the new man, in contrast with the old, he continues, " in mind, in will, in heart, and sin, bath not dominion over us, because we are under grace," carefully omitting "because we are not under law."
Mr. M`Leod, Presbyterian minister in Canada, says: " They" (those whom he calls by a name of reproach) "falsely teach that in regeneration the old nature remains the same, the new is introduced. They speak of it as if it were the introduction of a new power into the soul, not as if it were the regeneration of the soul itself, as if the Holy Ghost created a new being, and inserted it into us; while the Bible teaches, not that any new power is added to the soul, but life from God is breathed into the Soul, as it were, or in the language of scripture, the soul is born again, passes out of its former state of unbelief and darkness, and enters into a new state of faith and holiness. All the powers of the soul are so affected as to be renewed, and to bring forth fruit unto God; " and, confounding Christ's taking true humanity with union with humanity as a race, objects to saying, "between humanity as seen in our Lord and humanity as seen in us there could be no union." He says if so He could not stand in our stead, again confounding union and substitution whereas it was because He was alone in sinless humanity that He could stand in our stead.
Dr. Bonar openly ridicules the idea of two natures, or anything equivalent to it, in the Christian. He indeed puts Christ in our sinful place, though sinless, all through His life.
I will give an extract, from the discourse of a president of a Baptist College, of a sermon preached with applause at a convention and conference of Baptists, which will show the doctrine in its fullness and true root plainly stated, not saying that all have received every part of it, but as here presented in a full formal way. It is borrowed, sometimes almost verbally, from a German theologian, and has been reproduced in the same terms by one whom perhaps I might call the leading evangelical minister in Switzerland, at any rate in his own canton. It is current in a modified shape everywhere, even where its full bearing is not understood. It has been carried to its extreme results by Menken, in Germany, of whom I know little, and by Irving in England, of whom I know a great deal. Its effects, diluting Christianity and subverting the truth, prevail where, as I have already said, sometimes its true root is unknown and its just consequences utterly rejected; but their Christianity is mutilated and spoiled by it The sermon itself is a dream of Christ's life, founded on the doctrine, of which there is not a word in Scripture, reproducing the German or Swiss I have alluded to.
" Connected in every fiber of His nature with the common nature of mankind, He saw that He must suffer, the Just for the unjust. It could not be that human nature should fail of enduring the settled and necessary penalty of its sin, and He not on]y had a human nature, but in Him human nature was organically united, as it never had been before, except in Adam; if the members suffer, should not also the Head? When He was but twelve years of age, the consciousness of this divine commission had dawned upon Him.
Sitting as an humble questioner before the doctors of the Law, the conviction had become overmastering; I am He, the teacher and prophet promised long ago.... I am He, the sent of God, the Son of God. And the eighteen years that followed had made this conviction part and parcel of His very being; growing with His growth, and strengthening with His strength, it had taken up into itself all the energies of His soul, conscious or unconscious, until His life and His work were identical, and He could say, Lo, I come to do Thy will, 0 God.' " I will not pursue the wretched picture, created by an unscriptural imagination, which is given of Christ's conflicts, through realizing what was before Him. Suffice it to say that it resulted in His consecrating Himself, and that as devoted to death, in His baptism by John. But as to this the preacher then takes up a third point, founded on Christ's baptism by John..It is " a proof of Jesus' connection with humanity, with its sin, and its desert of death, Jesus' connection with human sin, and His consecration to death for the sins of the world; how clearly that stands out in the baptism!" " Jesus personally," he tells us, " and in every act and thought of His life, was sinless.... and here we come to the greatest mystery of God's grace-4he person of Jesus Christ, and His assumption of the common nature of us all. If Jesus had no connection with a sinful and lost humanity, or if that connection with a sinful, and lost humanity had been merely a factitious and forensic one, then it would have been the greatest breach of justice, the sheerest insult to purity, the most extravagant of absurdities, that the Lord Jesus should have submitted to an ordinance which was in some sense a confession of sin, and a declaration that this sin deserved nothing less than death. My friends, we can never explain the baptism of our Lord, unless we remember that Jesus was 'made sin for us, taking our nature upon Him, with all its exposures and liabilities, that. He might redeem it, and unite it to God;" not sinners, mind, but " it." " But this one mighty fact, the taking upon Him of our nature, does explain it.
As one with humanity, He was about. to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself." I might go on with much more, but it is hardly needed.
In all he says of John's baptism there is not a word of truth. Actual sins, not sin in humanity at all, were confessed. Did Jesus confess such? In Him it was fulfilling righteousness entering in by the door. Jesus went, not with sinful Jews, but with God's remnant, in their first step in the path God's word had led them into, as the door of the kingdom. So far was John's baptism from being to death, that not one who had been baptized of him would ever have put Christ to death. If all had received it, they would- have received a living Christ, Messiah; and He would not, as far as that went, have been put to death at all. But this is not my business now. Dr. Strong uses it as a proof of His doctrine. My business is with the doctrine itself, which is here pretty fully brought out, not by an adversary, but by an advocate of it; and that, not an openly heretical teacher, but one who speaks truth when he, conies to the application of it-a fair sample, in its best forms, of the system. "I also," he says, " must die to sin, by having Jesus' death reproduced in me. I must rise to a new life, by having Jesus' resurrection reproduced in me." I do not accept the form of this statement: still it connects itself with vital truth. But then comes the ground. " The putting away of the sin and guilt of humanity, which was the essential feature of Christ's work, must take -place in me, and this I must do by having my life incorporated with His life."
This really denies the atonement What is the guilt of humanity? But on its own ground this is quite unscriptural. Not I, says Paul, but Christ liveth in me (Gal. 2:20); but I do not now enter farther on this. The foundation is thus laid; "It was humanity that bore the curse in His death, and all the true life of humanity rose from the dead in His resurrection." He then puts our death and resurrection as a result of corresponding death to sin and resurrection to holiness. This is an unscriptural way of putting it, based upon the error I combat-the denial of our evil nature, always the same but reckoned dead already by faith and kept down through the Spirit by a totally new life. But I cannot pursue it here.
It is a common way of putting it, and connected with reforming the old man, the root of all being now exposed in this doctrine; and cropping out all over the world; largely taught in the Free Church of Scotland, in various shades and degrees, sometimes not knowing what, it means, sometimes in its mere practical results; but likely to be widely spread by last year's Cunningham Lectures on the χένωσις, or self-emptying of Christ, which are a developed index or "catalog raisonnee " of German speculations and heresy; where their effect too is already seen in the way the blessed Lord is spoken of, even by the author.
How different, how contrasted with all this, is the calm and beautiful simplicity of the Scriptural account of Christ's life. Let us see how Scripture states the incarnation. After stating (John 1) what Christ was (Οεὸς ἦν λόγος), John tells us (verse 14) what He became; the word was made flesh (σὰρξ ἐγἐνετο), and dwelt amongst us. So in Heb. 2:14: "As the children were partakers (χεχοινώηχεν) of flesh and blood, He also Himself in like manner took part (μετέσχεν) of the same, that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death." He became a man, was made a little lower than the angels, that He might die (Hell 2: 9). But His being born in flesh was by the power of the Holy Ghost, so as to be holy as so born (Luke 1:35). " The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee; therefore that holy thing (τὸ ἅγιον) which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God." He was as to the flesh born of God, holy, Son of 'God; what was born of Mary was a holy thing. He was, by divine power and the operation of the Holy Ghost on that blessed and obedient handmaid of the Lord, born a holy thing, as man. This was not sinful flesh. He was (Gal. 4:4,5) γενόμενος ἐχ
Γυναιχός, γένομενος ὑπὸ νόμον, that He might redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. But this, in us, is thus the fruit of redemption. To as many as believed
(John 1:12) on Him He gave authority to take this place, to none others. But to proceed. We have here no union with sinful humanity; but, what was wholly Unique, a sinless. man, born holy in a miraculous way. The place of sons for others belongs only to those who received Does Heb. 2 lead to any other thought? "Behold I, and the children which God has given me;" only these are spoken of. These children were in flesh and blood; so He took part in it. But the objects of His doing So are carefully distinguished from the race. I am not questioning that Christ died for all; I -believe it. But His drawing all men was by His death, not by incarnation, but by what wrought redemption when man had despised and rejected Him, and the world was judged, and the whole of it lay in wickedness (1 John 5:19). He had to draw those (John 12:32) not united, but far from Him. But I have said the objects are carefully distinguished from union with the race. They are (Heb. 2) the children God had given Him. He took up (took up their cause) not angels-what an occasion to speak of His connection with the race!-but He took up the seed of Abraham. As they were in flesh He took it, but not a word of union with humanity. But more than this, we have the positive statement of who those are who had part in this oneness. He who sanctifieth, and they who are sanctified, are all of one (ἐξ ἑνός), and they are so as so sanctified. Death He tasted for every man; but union with man is unknown to Scripture. They speak of His being bone of our bone, flesh of our flesh; Scripture never. If the words in the New Testament (Eph. 5:30) be genuine, we are of His flesh and of His bones when He is glorified. And in the Old Testament Eve was such of Adam, not Adam of Eve. In every form the theory is as false as it is mischievous.
The other quotation in Heb. 2 confirms the same truth: "I will declare thy name unto my brethren," which was accomplished after His resurrection, as the 22d Psalm plainly intimates, and is so beautifully unfolded in its accomplishment in the 20th of John's Gospel. The words which follow fully
establish the point: " In the midst of the church will I sing praise unto Thee." The truth is, there is no such thought in Scripture as Christ being united to men or humanity. He was a true man, but there was no union with other men in their sins. Nor is union with humanity a Scriptural thought at all. The only connection with men, which can in any way 'be alleged or pretended, is in 1 Cor. 11 " The-head of every man is Christ," but there it is power, not union, which is spoken of, relative position of dignity. The setting union previous to redemption work falsifies Christianity and the state of men.. The passage has been quoted, that we were " crucified with Him." This is indeed faith's apprehension, and God's apprehension of us as looked at as in Christ, inasmuch as He died- for us. But it only confirms the great truth I seek to establish. Who are the " we " or the " I "' crucified with Christ? The believer, and the believer only! Were all the ungodly sinners who die in their sins, and never heard of Christ, crucified with Christ?
That He was a propitiation for the whole world I read in 1 John 2, but there He was alone for others. It was done towards God, and the blood on the mercy seat opens the door of the gospel to all sinners. But this has nothing to do with union with the race. It was done for, not with them. When the title of Son of man is shown to belong to the Lord, how does He take it up? Through His death! The Father took care that, if men despised and rejected Him, the testimony to who He was should be there. The resurrection of Lazarus demonstrated Him Son of God; the riding in on the ass bore witness to the glory of the Son of David; then the Greeks come up, and the Lord says (John 12:23): " The hour is come that the Son of man should he glorified." Here the race is in question. " Verily, verily, I say unto you, except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone; but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit." Son of God and King of Israel He was, according to Psa. 2; but to take His place as Son of man, according to Psa. 8, in the glory that belonged to Him according to that title, He must die. His Spirit then enters anticipatively into that scene, and He warns His followers they must follow Him in that path, but bows in perfect submission to His Father's will, seeking only His glory; and this, as it ever did, opens out to Him the vista of His glory which flowed from it; " I, if I-be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me." For in truth they were far away. So far was it from union, that it was as wholly rejected from the earth, lifted up and away from it, that He would draw men. When man had rejected Him utterly, and the world was judged in consequence (John 12:31), lifted up out of it; He, the crucified Jesus, through death, and by it, became the attractive point to all men in grace. The sin of man, in total alienation from God and the love of God, in redeeming power for such, must both be made manifest, and meet in the death of the Lamb of God, before there could be any bond between them. Redemption is the sole basis of blessing. A living Savior was, as in the world, Son of God, Messiah, entitled to be King of Israel. A Son of man who has died and risen again can alone take the world, and take it as a Redeemer and Savior. He who descended into the lower parts of the earth is the same that is ascended far above all heavens, that He might fill all things (Eph. 4:10); and He, and in that character, takes the place and power in grace and glory which belongs to Him. So when His hour was really come (see verse 51 in Luke 9), and the disciples own Him as the Christ of God, "He straitly charged them to tell no man that thing, saying, The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be slain, and be raised the third day"
(Luke 9: 2022); and then shows them His glory.
No doubt as Son He quickens whom He will, and has, from Adam on; but He is not for us the life and the resurrection, but the resurrection and the life (John 11) Hence in John 6, where He is the bread οf life, He so insists on resurrection at the last day. It was on totally new ground, founded on His death, man could have blessing (verses 39, 40, 44, 53). He gives His flesh for the life of the world; and unless men eat the flesh and drink the blood of the Son of man, they have no life in them. Whoso eats that has eternal life. Union with men, and sinful men, without giving life or redemption, is a Socinian fable; unwittingly often I freely admit; but it is so. " Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground, and die, it abideth alone He took flesh and blood, but stood alone, quickening indeed, as Son of God, whom He would, but as man in the flesh, alone in the place He stood in, until by death He could righteously bring in others, and redemption (without which-save of course Himself-none could have to say to God) was accomplished. A Son of man, alive in the days of His flesh, in union with men, without giving life, and without justification or redemption, is unknown to Scripture; but a union with sinful man, giving life and redemption, or justification, before His death, is alike unknown to it. " I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me." A union of Christ with sinful man is wholly unknown to Scripture.
What then was God doing with men before? Quickening souls assuredly from Adam. on; but in His dispensations with 'men testing their state for their own instruction; in the former world setting them in innocence in the Garden of Eden, where they fell, and then on to the flood without any special institution, though not without testimony. That world became so bad, that it was destroyed by the flood. Then came government in Noah in the new world; promise to Abraham called out from the midst of universal idolatry; the law, testing men and bringing in transgression; the prophets, to recall to the law and testify of Christ. Then God said, I have yet one Son: it may be they will reverence My Son. And when they saw Him they said, Come let us kill Him, and the inheritance shall be ours. Not only was man lawless without law, and a transgressor under law, but when grace came in the person of the blessed Son of God, they would none of it. The presence of a Divine person drew out the enmity of the heart of man against God:
"Now they have both seen and hated both Me and My Father." So far from there being a link with humanity, or man as a race, it was the final test of their state: God come in grace, as a man in their midst. The result was: Now is the judgment of this world.
Hence, in speaking of Christ's death (Heb. 9:26), it is said, "Now once in the end of the world (the consummation of ages) He hath appeared." Morally it was the end of man's history; not the communication of life, hypothetically even, to a race, nor the taking it up into union organically; but the deliberate and entire rejection by that race of Him in whom was life. And so it is stated (John 1:4,5), " In Him was life, and the life was the light of man,"-emphatically such; " but the light shineth in darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not." "He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not. He came to His own, and His own received Him not." To as many as received Him, He gave title to be children; but they were born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God (ver. 13). It had nothing to do with the first Adam and his nature; if He was received, it was in being born of God. Light had come into the world; and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. That light was life, but with the testimony of John the Baptist, of Christ's work, of the Father, of the Scriptures, whence they thought they had eternal life, they would not come to Him, that they might have life. There was no mixing the last and first Adam, no renewing the latter by the former, but the utter rejection of the former by the latter, and the judgment of a world convicted of sin by His rejection. Union in incarnation is a mystical and mystifying fable. Man must be born again.
This leads me to the second point-the form this error takes when union with sinful man in incarnation is not so distinctly held as by the Germans and their scholars among Presbyterians and Baptists-namely, that nothing new is given to man; that the old and new man are not contrasted in the renewed man.;
but that, there is simply a renewal of man as he is, in his affections, thoughts, and whole soul. Such is the Wesleyan doctrine. Such is the basis of perfectionism; such is the current doctrine amidst crowds of Christians and their teachers, exalting the first man to the losing of the full and blessed truth of grace in the Second. Amidst a large class, such as the Wesleyans, it has taken this form: man, body, soul, and spirit, was in a good state before the fall, in a bad state after it; then, by the operation of the Spirit, in a good state again. And thus, they consistently hold, a man may be born again ten times a week, and also be perfect; but it is the perfection of the first man, not of a Christ in glory, conformity to whom is alone spoken of as our goal in Scripture. With all classes who have these views, varying in details, lust is not sin, unless the will consents -a horrible, unholy doctrine; and denying that sin in the flesh is condemned, and the whole truth of the fallen state of man. But my part is to see and state what Scripture says as to this, not now to go into details as to the false doctrine itself. Possibly at the close, if there be any profit in it, I may state, from the respective writings of those who hold them, the views into which this evil root of doctrine has branched out.
Scripture states distinctly that divine life is a wholly new thing given of God, always in absolute contrast with the flesh, for which death is the only remedy. I have been somewhat surprised at this truth being contested. Certainly some years ago the conflict of flesh and Spirit was generally owned amongst real Christians, if we must not except the Wesleyans. But our business is with the Word of God. First, I quote the well-known passage (John 3), "Except a man be born again" (ἅνωθεν), again In its origin and source, for ἅνωθεν means from the very beginning or starting-point, as in Luke 1:3, " from the very first." And this was in reply to Nicodemus, who thought he could be taught, and led right by teaching. Further, in insisting on it and answering Nicodemus, who did. not see how so totally a new life could be possible and puts the case of a natural new birth, the Lord declares that that which is born of the flesh is fleshy is of that nature, as every animal even is of the nature of that which is born; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit-has its nature. Now the mind of the flesh (Rom. 8) (not the carnal mind, as a condition of soul, but τὸ φξόνημα τῆς σαξχός) is enmity against God, is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can bi; so then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. They that are after the flesh mind the things of the flesh; but ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Is not that a new thing altogether? And if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His. So that all have not this new thing. And if Christ be in you, the body is dead, because of sin; and the Spirit is life, because of righteousness. Is not the Spirit being life, Christ being in us, a new thing? But again (1 John 5:11,12): " This is the record that God bath given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He that hath the Son hath life, and he that bath not the Son of God. hath not life." Is not having the Son a new thing to the sinner? Not merely changing his affections and thoughts, but having the Son, we have life; not having Him, we have not life. Hence Christ says, " Because I live, ye shall live also" (John 14:19). He gives His sheep eternal life (John 10) He is that eternal life (1 John 1:2) which. was with the Father and was manifested to us. The last Adam is a life-giving Spirit (1 Cor. 15) " When Christ, who is our life," says the apostle (Col. 3:4); and again in Gal. 2:20, "Nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me." It is life which is given us, life in Christ in the power of the Spirit; the law "-that is, its nature and uniform character-" of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus." We are alive unto God in-not Adam, but-Jesus Christ our Lord (Rom. 6:11). It is a well of water (John 4), God's gift in Christ, springing up unto everlasting life, in its highest state of eternal glory. When the full Christian place is understood and enjoyed, there is a life of which God is the source. We are born of God through the Spirit, and the Spirit dwells in us, giving power and liberty in this life with God, and from sin, through the-redemption that is-in Christ Jesus. -But into this, blessed- as the subject is, I cannot enter here.
Being by the word (James 1:18), that which is heavenly and divine, yet suited to, and, when in Christ, belonging to man, is. communicated for the sanctifying of the affections and thoughts, a nature having been communicated, when born of God, capable of enjoying what is thus revealed. " Of His own will begat He us, by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures." " We are born again of incorruptible seed by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever" (1 Peter 1:23). Hence we are children of God by faith in Christ Jesus (Gal. 3:26). The things revealed by the Spirit (1 Cor. 2) are communicated in words which the Holy Ghost has taught. And so far as man lives rightly, he lives by every word. that proceeds out of the mouth of God (Matt. 4:4). This quickening and forming of the Christian's affections, by the word revealing things above, is fully acknowledged and, I trust, cherished by my readers, as by myself. But the examination of Scripture will show that the flesh, or old man, is an evil thing, gauged and rejected of God and of faith, accounted dead by reason of Christ's death, but never renewed, never changed. Its history in Scripture shows it to be -hopelessly bad; lawless when left to itself, transgressing the law when placed under it; when Christ came in grace, hating and rejecting Him; when the Spirit dwells in a man, lusting against it, and, if he be taken up to the third heaven, seeking, if it had been permitted, to puff him up about it. We are not simply sinners, but sinners dealt with in long patience
by God-a patience that has brought out the full evil of our heart; we are by nature the children of wrath.
First, that which is born of the flesh is flesh (John 3), a positive specific nature, which has its own lusts and delights, such as they are. Its works are manifest-may be seen (Gal. 5:19-21). The mind of the flesh is enmity against God. The renewed mind knows that in me, that is in my flesh, dwells no good thing
(Rom. 7) The fruit of the Spirit is in formal contrast with -its works; not only so, but it lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against it, and these are contrary the one to the other (Gal. 5:17). They that are after the flesh mind the things of the flesh; but if we live after the flesh, we shall die. If through the Spirit we mortify its deeds-for it is a nature which has its deeds-we shall live (Rom. 8) Is there any forgiveness, any amelioration, any remedy applicable to it? None!
All sins, with one exception, can be forgiven; but there is no forgiveness of an evil nature. God, sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, has condemned sin in the flesh (Rom. 8:3). It is the nature and standing of the first Adam, and, when we are in this, we are said to be in the flesh. What then is the remedy? Is there none? One only, if remedy it is to be called,-death. It was condemned in Christ's death, as we have seen in Rom. 8:3. (not that He had any of course, but as made sin for us); but that, if it was its condemnation, was also death. He that has died is justified from sin. (Rom. 6). I am crucified with Christ,. nevertheless I live; but not I, but Christ liveth in me (Gal. 2.) They that are Christ's have crucified the flesh, with its affections and lusts (Gal. 5:24). Knowing that our old man is crucified with Him (Rom. 6:6). If ye be dead with Christ (Rom. 6:8). Ye are dead, and your life hid with Christ in God (Col. 3:3). Hence the very place of faith is to reckon ourselves dead to sin (Rom. 6 A.1), and, as the flesh is still in us which lusts against the Spirit, to bear about in our body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus may be manifested in our body (2 Cor. 4:10). Christ having died, it is, for faith and the life of Christ in us, as if we had died, and we reckon ourselves dead, crucified with Him; dead to sin, dead to the law, crucified to the world, and the world to us, Christ lives in us, alive to God-not in Adam, for our old man is crucified with Christ, but-in Jesus Christ our Lord.
Scripture is as uniform and as clear as it possibly can be. There is the-flesh which—lusts against the Spirit, things contrary the one to the other; but we are entitled and bound to reckon ourselves dead, inasmuch as in us, that is in the flesh, there is no good thing. But Christ being in us, the body is dead because of sin (its only fruit, if we are alive in the flesh), and the Spirit life because of righteousness. Hence we say we have put off the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and put on the new, after God created in righteousness and true holiness, renewed in knowledge after the image of Him that created us. And note, it is not merely the deeds, but the old man with his deeds; the truth as it is in Jesus is the having done so and having put on the new man.
The first part of the Epistle to the Romans treats of guilt and forgiveness, through Christ having died for our sins; the second, our having died with Him, so that by Him we might live to God. Scripture is clear in the contrast of flesh and Spirit, the old man and the new; but we are entitled to hold the first for dead, and our life to be Christ and not the flesh. Also before God, we are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if so be the Spirit of God dwell in us (Rom. 8:9).
To deny that a new life is communicated to us, and that the old man, the flesh, is always contrary to the Spirit, is to deny the plainest testimonies of Scripture; while our privilege and duty, if indeed the Holy Ghost dwells in us, is to know that we are in Christ, not in the flesh, and to reckon ourselves dead, the old man crucified with Christ, seeing His death is available to us for that also. The perfect result will be our being like Christ in glory, as was shown to the disciples in the transfiguration. Nor is there any other perfection for the Christian than this: only we are to realize it here, Christ in us the hope of glory; and if Christ be in us, as our life, is not this something wholly new, and contrary to all that the flesh is? We are in Him for acceptance, He in us for life and walk. If my reader would see this life fully developed, let him read Col. 3:5-17. Let him note that in 2: 20 our death with Christ is laid-as the basis where our being alive in the world, in the religious aspect, is not allowed; and in 3: 1 our being risen with Christ. We are associated in life with Him risen, now that He is glorified, our life hid with Him in God. No thought of sustaining the old Adam-life, nor taking it up into Him, or infusing His into ours by a kind of incorporating power; but, on the contrary, we are dead and gone as to this, and Christ is our life, and so belong to heaven, where He is, though not yet there.
This only remains to refer to, the positive testimony that our union is as believers with Christ in glory. We have seen it already, when speaking of the alleged union of Christ with us in incarnation (Heb. 2), that only they that were sanctified were of one with Him. But there remains some positive evidence to notice. In John 14 the promise of the Comforter is given, expressly upon the ground of Christ's being gone on high,-as in John 7, the Holy Ghost was not yet [given] because Jesus was not yet glorified. When He was come, as we read in John 14, " In that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you." Who? Humanity? No, the disciples only. The Comforter was not for the world,-" whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him; but ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you " (John 14:17). And this is the more definite, because in the early part of the chapter the Lord speaks of the Father being in Him, and He in the Father, but not of the disciples being in Him, or He in them. This belongs to the present time, when Jesus is glorified, and the Holy Ghost come.
The same great truth is brought out in Rom. 8 There is no condemnation for them who are in Christ Jesus; but this is through the presence of the Holy Ghost, the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, consequent on the death of Christ. " Ye are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if so be the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, He is none of His;-and if Christ be in you-," etc. Here is union, and through the Spirit; Christ being glorified, we in Him and He in us. So in 1 Cor. 6:17, " He that is joined to the Lord. is one spirit." " Now He which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God, who bath also sealed us and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts"
(2 Cor. 1:21,22). So "if any man be in Christ, it is a new creation; old things are passed away, all things are become new; and all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ "
(2 Cor. 5:17,18).
So in a more special character of this union, the being members of His body, it is to Christ as raised from the dead by God's power and set at His right hand, and we by the same power quickened with Him, and raised together, and made to sit together in heavenly places in Him. Thus God has given Him to be head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who filleth all in all. So -indeed in Eph. 2:12-18. So in the fifth chapter, connected. with the comparison with the husband and wife, and Eve's union with Adam. So it is largely developed in 1 Cor. 12 as a system established here on earth, that it is by one Spirit we are all baptized into one body, to which Christ, and those united to Him by the Spirit, are compared. The whole groundwork of the New Testament, and the truth taught in it, is that Christ, though a true man,. was alone until He had accomplished redemption; and that then, when He was glorified, we are in Him, united to Him, by the Holy Ghost, He the head, and we the members.. John gives us our being in Him. individually; Paul also our corporate union with Him, the Head, as living members of His body (He, the Head, being glorified on high).
Christ's union with sinful humanity is an anti-scriptural fable.
The life the Christian receives is a wholly new one; he is born again. That which is born of the flesh being flesh, that which is barn of the Spirit being spirit. He that hath the Son hath life; he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. There is no renewing or ameliorating of the flesh; it is enmity against God and cannot be subject to His law.
Our union is with Christ glorified, in a new life in Him, through the indwelling of the Holy Ghost, of whom our bodies are the temple, and against whom the flesh always lusts.
Let me add that God, in His history of man, has shown what flesh is, and even the creature left to himself. The first thing man has always done is to spoil what God has set up good. Man himself-the first thing we read of him is eating the forbidden fruit. The first Noah did, after offering thanksgiving for his deliverance, was to get drunk. Israel made the golden calf, before Moses came down from the mountain. Nadab and Abihu offered strange fire the first day after being consecrated, and Aaron never went into the holy of holies in his garments of glory and beauty. The son of David, Solomon, loved many strange women, and the kingdom was divided. The Gentile head of gold persecuted the godly, and became a beast, characterizing the empires that followed him for the seven times. What shall we say of the church? How soon did all seek their own, not the things of Jesus Christ, and forsake the devoted and faithful apostle! John could say, "There are many antichrists, whereby we know that it is the last time." But God has worked on in grace, in spite of this, to show what He is, His longsuffering and goodness and patience. So all those things-man, the law, the priesthood, royalty in the Son of David, He that rises to reign over the Gentiles, His being glorified in His saints-all is made good in its place in the Second Man, the last Adam. May His name be eternally praised! As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy. As is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the earthy, so also we shall bear the image of the heavenly. And in the ages to come God will show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness towards us in Christ Jesus. I speak of man's evil, not surely to delight in it, but that we may so know it, and that in conscience, that we may take, through grace, Christ instead of ourselves, and be occupied with Him.
I cannot but recall to the reader what this system involves -that " Christ, who knew no sin, was made sin for us," means that Christ, having been sinless in His eternal divinity, was made sin in being made man. By. whom? Not when He offered Himself without spot to God, but He was made a bad sinful being by God, when coming into existence in this world!

Scriptural Unity and Union*

My object is in no way to assail Dr. Moody Stuart, of whose personal worth and piety (though myself unacquainted with him) I have no doubt, but-to take up the true grounds of unity and union, points not only of great importance but occupying the hearts and minds of Christians everywhere.
The desire of unity flows, I cannot doubt, from the Spirit of God. True unity and true union are from Him, and according to His mind He will bring all things that are blessed around Himself as a moral center. It evidently must be so, for He is God and the true center of all blessing. That according to this there is a special effectuation of this in Christ, in the fullness of times, is clearly also revealed to us in Scripture. Our question is: What, and of what, and how, is this unity or union? How far is it unity, and how far union? These are not the same.
Scripture must be our guide in the inquiry. And it is as precise as Dr. Stuart is vague. It reveals the purpose of God according to the good pleasure of His will, for the administration of the fullness of times to gather together in one (ἀναχεφαλαιώσασθαι) all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are in earth. It reveals an eternal state when Christ shall have given up the kingdom to God, even the Father, that God may be all in all-surely ever Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; but God as such all in all, not the subsistence of the kingdom held by Christ as man; as man the Son will then be subject, as we know He was on earth, though God over all blessed forever, all the fullness of the Godhead in Him bodily. I only add this to guard from error, as I have alluded to the passage in which His giving up of the kingdom and His subjection are spoken of.
There is another unity spoken of that is, of saints on earth, and I may add in glory; and in a twofold way. First, as individual saints, a family I may call it, as it specially refers to the Father-Christ being the firstborn among many brethren. Of this John speaks; of the church as the body he never does. Its second aspect is this. Those in whom the Spirit of God dwells are really united to Christ by the Holy Ghost, are members of His body, who, as man, is exalted to the right hand of God, in the glory He had with the Father before the world was. Both these will be perfected in heavenly places. The sons will be in glory conformed to the image of the Son. They have born the image of the earthly; they will bear the image of the heavenly, made perfect in one. He will be the head of the body, the church, over all things.
I have thought it better to state briefly the Scripture revelation as to unity. My statements are little more than Scripture texts strung together, so as to show what its doctrine is distinctly, before any comment on the statements of Dr. Stuart's sermon. For the truth itself is what enables us to discern any departure from it and ideas which are purely human in their true light. True unity is too precious a thing, too much according to the heart of God, and must be, not to seek to guard against any erroneous views as to its nature.
The passages I would refer to, some of which I shall be led to notice more fully, are John 17:11,20,21,22,23, three distinct unities. Eph. 1:19-23, compare Col. 1:15-18, the same twofold headship. 1 Cor. 15:24-28; Eph. 1:9,10; Rom. 8:29,30.
I am somewhat surprised, not at the sermon's producing an impression, but that its vague statements were not estimated more justly by those who sought its publication. I suppose want of Scriptural habits of thought is what accounts for it. Its references to Scripture are everywhere loose and inaccurate. The text itself connects part of verse 23 of John 17 with verse 21, leaving out verse 22, which makes a total change in the phase of unity treated of; and the effect of that in verse 24 is left out, or the discrepancy would be manifest.
There are three unities spoken of in John 17 First, of the immediate disciples of Christ. The application-of this unity to them is incontrovertible, as is evident from the language of verse 12. The second (20, 21) is of those that believe through their word, " one in us," and this was to the intent that the world may believe. The third is unity in glory, the glory given to Christ Himself of the Father, when the saints are made perfect in one, that the world may know He was sent of Him, and, seeing them in the same glory as Christ, know (most wondrous word!) that we have been loved as He was loved. May our souls admire such grace, and know what it is to dwell in it I Dr. Stuart omits the statement of their being in glory (verse 22), and connects the world's believing with their being made perfect in one, This is not the right way of dealing with Scripture, and Scripture so solemn and precious in its import as this is.
He tells us farther, " The union of the true believer to Christ is set forth in our text, and secured by the double bond of a mutual indwelling." Now there is a mutual indwelling blessedly set forth in John 14 as known to saints when the Holy Ghost should be given, as He was on the day of Pentecost. But no union with Christ is spoken of in the text, nor indeed does John ever speak of it. It is another thought-one which in his Epistle he carries on to dwelling in God and God in us, known by the Spirit He has given. Perhaps it is even a more precious thought than union, if in such infinite and unspeakable privileges, conferred by grace,-of which, His grace, God will show in the ages to come the unspeakable riches in His kindness towards us through Jesus Christ,- we can speak of more and less.
On this mutual indwelling of Christ and us D. Stuart insists much. There is not a word of it in John 17 The mutual indwelling of the Father and the Son is spoken of as " Thou Father art in Me, and I in Thee," but not so of Christ and the believer. Dr. Stuart has been misled by the sound of the words in them and Thou in Me;" but there is no mutual indwelling here at all. It is display in glory-Christ in the saints and the Father in Christ. The whole statement is a mistake. We have only to read the passage to see it; and in privileges so wondrous, and thoughts so deep, it behooves us to keep close to Scripture. If we do not, we shall lose much, following our own thoughts. I cannot doubt that so excellent a person as Dr. Stuart has done so here in giving course to his own thoughts instead of cleaving close to the word.
I do not dwell much on the " oneness of evil." There is a oneness in evil in one sense. It is in man self-will departed from God, and enmity against Him, whatever its form, lawless lust, transgression of the law, and hating Christ, and therein His Father. Still the statements of Dr. Stuart seemed to me to hang little together. " The oneness of evil is among the most marked of its characteristics," yet " sin and unity are everlasting opposites." However, as my object is not to criticize but to treat the subject of true unity, and there are important moral observations in the remarks of Dr. Stuart on the oneness of evil, I do not comment on it farther.
I should wholly object to his use of John 15, which is hortatory; and the true vine applies immediately to the then state of the disciples, "Now ye are clean" being really "Ye are already clean " (ἥδη). Hence, as the blessed Lord knew them, verse 6 changes from " ye" to " if a man," and returns to " ye" in verse 7, when fruit-bearing, not withering and burning, is the subject. The true vine refers to the vine brought out of Egypt. Israel was not the true vine, but Christ; as Christ, not Israel, was in result the servant owned of God (Isa. 49) It is not church union. That is union of members to Christ the Head in heaven, where it is not a question of cutting off, nor of fruit-bearing, nor of purging. I quite admit that there is the general analogy now, and the applicability of the exhortation. But I cannot go farther into the interpretation of the passage here. It has no application to Dr. Stuart's object, for it is at-all events-an exhortation. All this part of John takes up the responsibility of saints with the Father. It is "a lower sense" in which the disciples are said to be in Christ; namely, their connection with Christ then upon earth (ἤδη, already), not when He was the exalted Man in heaven, which alone is church union, as Eph. 1:19-23 makes evident.
But I pass on from this section (which is a matter of interpretation on which I should be glad to hear any godly person, though not doubting the justice of what I have said), only remarking that when Dr. Stuart says " a lower sense," it cannot have two senses, and I suppose he would not deny that, if it speaks of " temporary believers," it cannot refer to union with Christ as members of His body.
In the following section I admit the difference between the individuality of angels and the one race of which Adam was the head. And that Christ was the head of a spiritual race, taking Adam's place in a higher way, every intelligent Christian taught in the word will admit, and will moreover feel the importance of it. Rom. 5 and 1 Cor. 15 are clear on the point. Dr. Stuart has given us, too, some interesting observations on the elements of all being united in Christ's person, the full justness of which I am not prepared to speak of without weighing them more than I have, but which are quite worthy of being weighed, and which I pass from only to pursue my main subject, union and unity. Here all is confusion, and sometimes difficult to seize from the way it is expressed. Union and unity as here used have no
Scriptural intelligible meaning. That God is the fountain of all angels' good, and the source of their happiness, and the center of their harmony, is certain. But what means their being "united to Him" 2 Who ever heard, in Scripture at least, of angels being united to God? No trace of such a thought is in Scripture. I am sure Dr. Stuart means no harm in it, but it is this loose thinking, away from Scripture, which has deprived the church of so much precious truth. We, that is, all those who have the Holy Ghost, are united to Christ, the glorified man, as members of His body. " He that is joined to the Lord is one spirit." But angels united to God is really in itself a blasphemy-though I am quite sure Dr. Stuart means such as little as I do. But the reality of union with Christ is lost through this loose way of speaking. When Dr. Stuart says, " Many of them fall away," I thought at first it might be a misprint for "fell away," as we read of angels who kept not their first estate, and are reserved in chains of darkness to the judgment of the great day. But he says the elect angels abide, in the present tense too, as is the whole statement. The rest of the paragraph is really one mass of confusion. Their everlasting union to the center of all good appears to be increased, confirmed, and secured.
As I have already said, there is no union to God. Angels, and principalities, and powers, are made subject to Christ, and the whole state of things will be reconciled to God in His fullness, and brought into order under Christ, when the fullness of time has come. God has given to Him, the exalted man, to be head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all (comp. Eph. 4:9,10); but increasing, conjoining, securing of union with God, is an idea utterly foreign to Scripture, and excludes what is in Scripture by what is substituted for it.
I will just remark that goodwill to men is not the form of the angels' words in Luke, but good pleasure (εηδοχία) in men. He does not take hold of angels, but He taketh hold of the seed of Abraham; and it is beautiful to see the unjealous delight of these holy beings in the plans of God's glory, though in others than themselves, for "His delight (Wisdom's) was in the sons of men." But the reciprocating song of earth, when He had finished His work, is all confusion. The babes and suckling’s spoken of in Psa. 8 are celebrating Messiah according to Psa. 118, a prophecy of which several verses are cited as to the latter days by the Lord and the apostles, particularly by Peter, the apostle of the circumcision. It-is the anticipation-of that day, "the day which the Lord hath made," when hosanna to the Son of David will resound, not from the mouths of babes and suckling’s, and the crowd that were divinely compelled to do it, lest the stones should have to cry out, but from a people willing in the day of His power, when His heart will set Him in the chariots of His willing people. And note here, in this remarkable anticipation of that day, the expression "peace in heaven." It is not till Satan and his angels are cast out thence that the full accomplishment of this will take place. Then in due time they shall say, Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord. Till then their house will be left unto them desolate, and they will not see Him. He meanwhile sits, not on His own throne, but on His Father's, as He expressly states in Rev. 3, according to the word: Sit on My right hand until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool. Then Jehovah will send the rod of His power out of Zion, and He will rule in the midst of His enemies.
The Lord had not finished His work when He entered into Jerusalem. His course down here may be said, in a certain sense, to have closed. His work He was just about to accomplish. But it is here summed up by Dr. Stuart, as God in Christ reconciling all things to Himself, whether they be things in earth or things in heaven. There is no such passage, no such statement in Scripture. Two passages are confounded, and both misapplied. God, we read in the end of 2 Cor. 5, was in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing to them their trespasses. But the world would not have Him: and, having accomplished the work of atoning redemption and gone into glory, having been made sin for us, He sends out His ambassadors to beseech men to be reconciled to God. Blessed gospel testimony and grace! There is another passage on quite a different subject, in Col. 1 All the fullness (πᾶν τὸ πλξωμα, a word of all moment against the Gnostic heresies-compare 2: 9) was pleased to dwell in Him, and... by Him to reconcile all things to itself, by Him I say, whether they be things in heaven or things in earth, and you hath He reconciled, in the body of His flesh through death.
Here the reconciliation of believers through the work of the cross is clearly distinguished from the reconciling all things. They were reconciled. "You bath He," etc. But God was by Him to reconcile all things. This was to be done. The duality is maintained all through the passage. First-born of every creature, first-born from the dead, head of the church, His body. This is summed up at the end of Eph. 1 These two passages in 2 Cor. 5 and
Col. 1 are mingled together (by Dr. S.) and connected with His going on the ass to Jerusalem, and utter confusion is the natural result.
There is an utter confusion too in all this part, one which has brought in abominable error as to Christ, in the foremost of the evangelical German divines, and in the Dutch reformed in America through them, namely, as if man was being restored. Adam was the image of Him that was to come. But all is
utterly fallen and ruined in the first Adam. Now, says the Lord, is the judgment of this world; and again, Now once in the end of the world (συντελεία τῶν αἰὠν hath He appeared to put away sin. The head of the blessing is man in a new state, risen and exalted. Man, as in the flesh, has seen and hated both Him and His Father.
As a general truth Dr. Stuart would not, and does not, deny that we all fell in Adam. But there is more than this. Man has been fully tested as to wheth.er as such he could be restored. Without law he was so bad that the flood was needed even in this world; under the law his sin became exceeding sinful; and when God after this came into the world in grace, making Himself of no reputation, to bring love to sinners, and yet showing divine presence and power in removing every effect of sin here below, they spat in His face and crucified Him. Now, says the Lord, is the judgment of this world. And we shall find that, whatever God set up good, the first thing man did was to spoil all, though God went on in grace. Man himself fell the first thing. Noah got drunk the first thing. The golden calf was made before Moses was down from the mount. Strange fire was offered the first day, and Aaron never went into the holiest in his robes of glory and beauty. Solomon, son of David, departed from God; and Nebuchadnezzar put the faithful ones in the fire and became a beast. Finally in the rejection of Christ, after all remedial means which were at God's disposal, it was demonstrated that the mind of the flesh was enmity against God. They had seen and hated both Him and His Father. Man must be born again (ἅνωθεν). It is a new creation when men were dead in sins, connected with the Second Man rejected by man, and now raised from the dead and exalted to the right hand of God.
That the blessed Lord was a true real man in flesh and blood is as essential to Christianity as that He was God. In this I trust. I have no controversy with Dr. Stuart. The Word was made (ἐγένετο) flesh and dwelt among us; and, as the children were partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same, made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death. This lies at the root, and is of the essence of Christianity, and a blessed truth it is, unspeakably so to us human beings, that if a sinless man He was a true man, body and soul, and, one may add, spirit. This was called in question by heresy as soon as His deity was.
I think Scripture is more guarded than Dr. Stuart here, but he is more guarded than some. Scripture never says, as some have, bone of our bone, and flesh of our flesh; and Scripture is wiser than we are. This has been used to make union in incarnation, which is quite unscriptural. It issued in Irvingism; but the seed was under the clod in Scotch Presbyterianism, and is still cherished as a garden plant in the semi-Irvingites of that body. Dr. Stuart only goes so far as to say, flesh out of our flesh, bone out of our bone. Still it leads him half-way into the evil.
A new creation must in its nature leave out fallen man, as fallen, for he is not a new creation but the old one, that which is put off-no doubt the same person-but he is of, and lives in a new creation, if in Christ Jesus And what would the new creation have been, as to moral beings, if fallen man was left out as the object of it? The elect angels have not left their first estate. Dr. Stuart is as usual very vague. " The operation was to be in man, already existing, and defiled by sin, which separates while it defiles. It was from our corrupted stock He drew His holy manhood, because not merely man like us, but of us."
What has this to do with the new creation? Was union in incarnation? Dr. Stuart does not say so, but what do his words mean? " Was Christ a new creation," he says, " casting Himself into the head of the existing family, and from it deriving His own everlasting manhood?" He does not Say it was union; that he puts differently. But he states it while admitting He was holy, harmless, undefiled, so as to lead the mind to a connection of Christ with man in incarnation, which, while from its uncertainty and vagueness it almost eludes the grasp, is perilous from the way it leads the soul to the verge of union in incarnation.
Christ assuredly was, as born into this world, and ever,. holy, harmless, undefiled; but it shows the habitual confusion of thought as to Christ, if we remember that this is spoken of Christ as high priest (Heb. 7) and carefully presented as separate from sinners, in contrast too with high priests "taken from among men." When Scripture speaks of His taking flesh (a vital truth for us, as I have already said), not only is it said "a body hast Thou prepared Me;" but, in stating His doing so, the language is careful not to speak as Dr. Stuart speaks.
The children χεχοινὠνηχεν of flesh and blood; of Him, μετέσχεν παξαπλησίωδ is used.
Now I repeat that there may be no mistake,- I hold His being truly a man in flesh and blood, and with a human soul as well as a body, to be a vital truth. It is the subject of the adoring joy of my soul, nor do I think it is half enough taught or believed, that He was a true man, while a sinless and holy man. What is false is connecting this with the idea of union with us. This vagueness as to union with man is so much the more perilous, as Dr. Stuart insists that there is a greater difference between the brutes and man, than between man and God. I suppose he refers here to the low and degraded form of infidelity called evolution. In his horror of this (perhaps, for my part X should say contempt) I should heartily join Dr. Stuart. But as to our present point he leaves out the present condition of man. Man was created for God; but preferring to believe the deceiver, he did his own will. He has been driven out of Paradise, where he had to say to God, he was without God (ἄθεοδ) in the. world. His adaptation to God was eternal misery as having lost Him, and now this is not all the truth. Man, as far as his will could do it, has turned God out of this world when come into it in grace. The mind of the flesh is enmity against God. In the moral sense he is infinitely farther from God than he is from the brute. If left to himself he can follow the brute and worse, and as regards God has no understanding. He was in the world, and the world was made by Him, and the world knew Him not. Man must be born anew to have anything to say to Him, save enmity, sins, and judgment. Conscience-the knowledge of good and evil-acquired by the fall he has. Nor does gracious invitation restore him. "Wherefore, when I came, was there no man? when I called, was there none to answer?" What He had seen and heard, that He testified, says John, and no man receives His testimony. The real question is not, Did Christ come in grace to such? but did He unite Himself to them? or are renewed souls united to Him when, having accomplished redemption; He is exalted to glory? Scripture speaks of the latter, and positively denies the former.
As to union in life, as I have said, Dr: Stuart is vague, and uses figurative expressions, which may mean nothing or anything. But he is distinct in identifying. Christ's uniting Himself to us, and taking sinners into union with Himself. This last was the problem, he says, and solved by His uniting Himself to His people in death. Now Christ's uniting Himself to His people is unknown to Scripture. He does not unite Himself to sinners, nor does He even to saints: they are united to Him by the Holy Ghost, when He is in glory. They are members of His body (not He members of them), members of it when the Head is glorified, and they are created again. The end of Eph. 1 and early part of Eph. 2 are clear as to this point, and how it takes place, and, where this is not seen, the real truth of unity is wholly lost. How can the Holy One be united to a sinner, if the union be real and spiritual? " He that is joined to the Lord is one spirit." Is that true of a mere sinner? And Scripture is express in denying it. " Except a corn of wheat fall
INTO THE GROUND AND DIE, IT ABIDETH ALONE." Hence in Ephesians, where union is spoken of, He is not seen till raised from the dead and set at God's right hand in heavenly places. And then, we being dead in sins, He hath quickened us together with Him and made us sit in heavenly places in Him. Then only is Scriptural and real union; not in Christ born into this world, united to sinners in their sins; not a Christ on the cross and, when He was most especially alone, united to those for whom He was substituted before their sins were canceled by His precious blood; not even a Christ glorified, united to sinners or to any down here. Scripture never speaks of His being united to us, but of saints being united to Him in glory in a totally new life by the Holy Ghost, so that they become risen and heavenly people.
Remark too here, that where the Lord says He abode alone till after He had 'died, He is speaking of the Son of man. Testimony to His being Son of God was given in the resurrection of Lazarus, to His being Son of David in His riding into Jerusalem. The Greeks come up, He says, " the hour is come that the Son of man should be glorified." But to take this title according to the counsels of God He must die. Son of God according to Psa. 2 He was; King of Israel, Messiah according to the same Psalm, He was; and surely, as to His personal title to it, Son of man, but the kings of the earth stood up, and the princes took counsel together. In a word, He must be. rejected to take up the place of Son of man according to Psa. 8 So in John 1 Nathaniel owns Him according to PS. 2. Son of God, King of Israel. The Lord's answer is, that he should see more henceforth for Israel in John is rejected in the first chapter, to own those born of God alone), " the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of man."
When Christ's birth, or His so wonderfully associating Himself with the called and repentant remnant of Israel in John's baptism, is spoken of, His title is Son of God. not Son of man.
" That holy thing that shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God," and the Father's voice, when heaven was opened; and the Holy Ghost descended on Him alone, " This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." Son of Man He delighted to call Himself, but (forbidding, when His testimony was rejected, Himself to be announced any more as the Christ: Matt. 16; Mark 9; Luke 9) the Son of man must suffer and be rejected, put to death, and rise again the third day, that as the risen man in a Wholly new position He might take the place revealed Of the Son Of man in Dan. 7 and Psa. 8
This doctrine of union of the Son of God with sinners in their sins falsifies the whole nature of Christianity, a new creation, and man in a new life, united to a glorified man in heaven, by the Holy Ghost dwelling in him, consequent on the-accomplishment of redemption. Dr. Stuart says, " Christ united Himself to His people by taking them to Himself in His death on Calvary." If this be so, all the vague language of Dr. Stuart, and the plain language of bolder men, as to union in incarnation, and also the utterly unscriptural doctrine of His bearing our sins all His life, is wholly set aside: But what does union here mean? "That He might receive us into oneness He stood in our place." This I believe, but it contradicts what is said a few lines higher up.
That all His people were seen as if they were there, because He represented them, and as He bore their sins, so also they died with Him is, blessed be God, true. But that has nothing to do with union. It is another great and precious truth, substitution. He stood in our place, as Dr. Stuart most justly says; but that is not union but the opposite of it. He accepted our penalty. Thank God, and blessed be the name of Him who has loved us, He did. But that is not union, but standing there for us alone. All that Dr. Stuart says of its effect as to our sins I cordially say Amen to, as a poor sinner profiting by it, though it has done far more also for us, and glorified God Himself, so that man goes into His glory. But this is not union. Union with Christ is in living saints when He is exalted as man to the right hand of God, the work of redemption, of perfect redemption, being accomplished when He was alone.
All that Dr. Stuart says as to His being broken in pieces is all wrong. A bone of Him was not- to be broken. In the passage " This is my body which is broken for you," " broken " is not really in the text. But on this I do not dwell farther. As Dr. Stuart says, " He who was to be-the-bond-of -union-forever was left alone as no other ever was, or can be." With what is here said my heart unites, but He was then alone. Only I must remark the customary looseness as to Scriptural truth in the words " The Lamb of God taking away the sins of the world." This is quite unsound, and nowhere found in Scripture. The sins of the world are not taken away, or there could be no judgment; indeed all would be saved: The end of this paragraph, in page 15, I think very objectionable, but it does not specially bear on my subject.
All that which follows, loose and unscriptural though it be in expression yet true in result, contradicts consequently all the statements as to union before or on the cross. "Through His death the Lord Jesus sends His Holy Spirit into the hearts of His redeemed; and by that Spirit, in the day of our effectual calling, we are brought into a wondrously high and holy union with Christ and with God." Now I have already said, in the Scripture it is by the Spirit, when we have received it, we are united to a glorified Christ, the only true and Scriptural union, and we may add, so of all true saints with one another, is by the same one Spirit who dwells in each of them. No doubt Christ had to die to send the Holy Spirit down here: a plain proof if we are brought into union with Him by it, that He was not united to us in death; but " Sends through His death" has really no sense. We were unfit to receive it, save as washed in His blood and forgiven; but sending through His death has really no sense." The Holy Ghost was not yet [ given] (was not as known in the New Testament, down here, though as a divine person of course eternal in His person, and operative in every work of God), because Jesus was not yet glorified," is what Scripture says, John 7 If He went not away, the Comforter would not come: showing clearly the place Christ must be in, as man, before we could be united to Him, He the head (Eph. 1) and we the body. We, sons by faith in Jesus withal, and He the Spirit of adoption, making us, being sons, cry Abba, Father, the power, and giving the consciousness of this new relationship with the Father, and membership of Christ. But Scripture never says, His Holy Spirit. It is incongruous, though He be called the Spirit of Christ, as present in us, in Rom. 8.
Nor is union with God a thought known to Scripture: a common one I grant it, but common to the unscriptural carelessness so usual among Christians. All this is loose confusion. And let it not be supposed that these things are immaterial. The true consciousness of our relationships with God and the Father and with Christ is the atmosphere in which our Christian affections breathe and are developed. Communion with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ, and with God, Scripture speaks of, and it is our highest blessedness, but of union with God never. It is unintentional blasphemy. Union is with Christ, the man in glory. Speaking of union with God only destroys the very idea of union.
The statements of Dr. Stuart on the Trinity are hazardous, going beyond Scripture; but I suppose he means what is truth, and it is not my present subject, so I leave it there. The history of the doctrine of the procession of the Holy Ghost, which professedly divided the Greek and Roman Churches, and which was a metaphysical novelty, forbidden even at Rome in the time of Leo the Great, ought to have taught Christians in these days (whilst holding the doctrine of the Trinity personally, and unity in the Godhead without wavering,) to avoid metaphysical theology in such holy matters, for this question of procession is mere metaphysics in divine things.
I now turn to " some of the great properties of this oneness."
Now in Dr. Stuart's remarks on these, I gladly recognize piety and personal delight in Christ. But true union is lost in his remarks. He speaks of gathering together in one all the redeemed in earth and heaven. Of this Scripture never does speak. It speaks of heading up all things under Christ. And it speaks of dying, not for the Jews only, but to gather-together in one the children of God. which were scattered abroad; so that then they had not hitherto been gathered. The unity of God's children down here is spoken of in a double way: the unity of children in a family, in their relationship with a holy Father, as in
John 17, Christ the first-born among many brethren; and the unity of the body united to Christ, the head in glory. But this Scriptural unity and oneness is lost in the vagueness of all the redeemed in heaven and earth. That the unity of the saints in the New Testament will not cease when they are in glory, I surely believe; they will then be made perfect in one. That the body will then be complete, also, the Church of the first-born, and the just men (the saints of the Old Testament) perfected, I do not doubt, though God has reserved some better thing for us.
But the unity spoken of in Scripture is by the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven. As to the body, by one Spirit we are all baptized into one body, Jews or Greeks, Barbarian or Scythian. This clearly could not be before. The Jew, on the contrary, was strictly bound to keep up the middle wall of partition, and sinned if he did not. Now by the cross it is broken down; and He has made both one, and reconciled both in one body to God, having slain the enmity, and we are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit. There is one body and one Spirit. There was the unity of a nation before, the great body of whom were not converted at all. The glorified head, the man in glory, did not yet exist, who is head over all things, head of the body. It is not as the creating life-giving Word and Son of God that Christ is head over all things, and to the Church His body. It is, as is evident from Eph. 1, the man whom God has raised and set at His right hand. Then only, too, the Holy Ghost was sent down from heaven; He could not be (John 7) till Jesus was glorified. And as we have seen, from 1 Cor. 12, then it was by the baptism of the Holy Ghost that the saints were baptized into one body.
So also it is as to known sonship, and the unity connected with it. " The heir, so long as he is a child, differs nothing from a servant though he be lord of all.... But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons; and because ye are sons God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying Abba, Father." Thus they are brought into known relationship with the Father, to be fully accomplished in glory, when they will be made perfect in one, Christ the first-born among many brethren. There are two unities, that of the family and of the body: one a relationship with the Father, Christ being the first-born; the other true union with Christ the head, formed by the Holy Ghost come down from heaven, consequent on His being glorified as man:-unities of which Christians were bound to maintain the manifestation on earth, according to John 17 and Eph. 4 In both respects they have failed. The wolf has caught the sheep and scattered them (thank God, he cannot pluck (catch) them out of the good Shepherd's hand), and he has set up the travestie of unity in Popery, and all sorts of churches, first national, and then free, among those who could no longer bear the corruptions of Romanism.
Scriptural unity and union is lost, nor scarce cared for, save that God is awakening a craving after it in these last days. It is confounded with communion, and union of organizations, which. cannot be the unity of the body nor of the family of God. Duty as to it is forgotten, and men are content to leave it to be fulfilled in another world. Let us see what Dr. Stuart makes of it in these last pages of his sermon. The bond of children is confounded with the membership of the body, and this is said to be similar to the union between the Father and the Son, a gross and utter mistake; as if the analogies of John 17 could be applied to the union of the members with the head. Apply only the teaching of Ephesians or 1 Cor. 12 to the wondrous statements of John, 17. and see how it offends every moral sense and feeling.
The rest of this paragraph, describing communion, I have not a word to say against. Only in strange confusion using an account of the state of the world (habitable earth) under Christ's reign, Dr. Stuart makes the spiritual flock to be a " mingled " one composed of wolves and lambs together, a sentence which I profess myself wholly unable to comprehend: if he had merely used it as a vague statement of peace, I should, but he says, it is a mingled flock. I first thought it meant unconverted and converted together; but he goes on to speak of spiritual communion together, and what the mingling is I do not know.
How wholly union, in the Scriptural sense, is lost, in the thought of the state of the soul, is seen in what follows. That Adam was the head of his fallen race no Christian denies: but what union is to a covenant, what, " as in Adam all die" has to do with dissolving union with his covenant, I know not. Next. it is union to the world in its allurements and power. What has this to do with 'the reality of union? Then we have union to sin, which has no sense at all. Sin in the flesh we read of, captivity to it, deliverance from it; but union to it only bewilders the mind. It is there always in the flesh, though we are no longer under the law of sin and death, Christ having died to sin once, and He being our life in the power of the Spirit.' Then we read of union -to self. Self is self. I do not live to self if I know the power of redemption; but all this has nothing to do with union or unity. It is my personal state as having died in Christ, and the risen Christ being now my new life.
As to crucifying being a lingering death but a certain one, it is all a mischievous delusion. If I am crucified with Christ, I am dead-dead with Christ, dead to the law, ye are dead, crucified with Christ, nevertheless alive; but not I, but Christ living in me: there is no lingering or gradual death spoken of in Scripture. I am to reckon myself dead, and then for practice to bear about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus. Only when actually dead, can it be said there is no sin in me. The whole theory here is unscriptural; but this by the by. Union is lost in the vague use of it for the state of the soul. Union with Christ is not simply life. As the Father raiseth, up the dead and quickeneth them, so the Son quickeneth whom He will. This is divine work. Union is connected with Christ seen as a man whom God has raised from the dead, and us together with Him. In connection with union He is not seen as life-giving Son, but as a man raised by God when He was dead. Hence in Col. it is also connected with our having been forgiven all trespasses.
As to the vine Dr. Stuart is contradicting himself, for he has recognized in this sermon that there are temporary branches which are taken away. I believe no member of His body will ever be separated from Him, but the application of the vine does not hold good.
How we get strength from His crucifixion in weakness I know not, save perhaps by moral experience realizing it. Scripture does not speak of it. We abide in Him, if we eat His flesh and drink His blood, and, in this sense eating Him, live by Him. But it is never said that we derive our strength from His crucifixion. Joy and fruit are our state. Union is another thing. Such statements deny its reality, and confound communion and union.
The last paragraph is sorrowful-sorrowful that Dr. Stuart's heart and conscience were not affected by what he speaks of. He recognizes that the world's admiration has been turned into a taunt, with a saying sometimes,-" Behold how they hate one another." Yet their mutual love is as genuine, and in the same circumstances would prove as intense, as eighteen hundred years ago. This is to be power for the salvation of the world. What is? That it would prove as intense in the same circumstances. Does the world say now, " Behold how these Christians love one another "? Does it not mock at their divisions? Is not corrupt Christianity taunting them with it? Is not the turning openly infidel? What is this change of circumstances but the worldliness and scattering of Christians? Besides, how is it to be power for the conversion of the world, when, in the loftiness of his heart, he (the worldly man) would count it despicable in himself to be capable of such an affection? " It speaks as a living witness in the hour when the Spirit moves on his heart." No doubt, but then it is not by it he was attracted when worldly. It is the individual already under the influence of the Spirit who is attracted by it. " To the world," Dr. Stuart tells us, " Christian love is incomprehensible." Yet it has great power in converting it. It is despicable in its eyes, but it is an attractive spectacle, ordained for the world's conversion.
The next property or power in it is in our seen union with Christ in heaven. What this means I know not. Men may see the fruits of it perhaps, but, as distinct from these, where the affections are set on heavenly things, it cannot be seen at all. There is nothing to say to it in the passage Dr. Stuart quotes. The chief priests, etc., took knowledge of them that they had been with Jesus, that is, when on earth. The general effect of communion with the Lord I surely do not question; but this confusion of communion with union, both in its reality and in its forming one body on earth, is one of the great evils of the day. It really denies union and promotes disunion among saints. If they can have communion from time to time, shake hands across the hedge, as has been said,-they are content.
But there is a craving, and from God. Union has therefore been sought in other ways. Of this even the " Evangelical Alliance" was and is a witness; but the name betrays its true character.. For an alliance there must be two or more. They agreed to remain sects, and to meet notwithstanding. Indeed they confessed, they had pretended to attain to too much-unity, and they must be content with union. In America it has been sought by interchanges of pulpits. But there error and truth are all mingled together, and indifference to truth is cultivated. In the English Establishment unity is sought in the same way. The most marked effort at unity is in the Presbyterian bodies. In Canada they have coalesced. In the United States the New School and the Old School, that is, Arminians and Calvinists have joined.
Dr. Stuart alludes to the union of the Reformed Presbyterians with what is called the Free Church of Scotland. As an outward thing one may rejoice in seeing fewer division among Protestants. As far as my acquaintance with their state goes, the "Covenanters" were, perhaps from their small numbers and adherence to principle, as a general thing, the most godly and living of the Presbyterian bodies. I trust they may not lose it in being swamped in a larger one. But it has nothing to do with the unity of the body of Christ. Imperfect as the views of Dr. Stuart, as to unity are, as he sees merely the building of Christians together as the children of their heavenly Father (a blessed union surely, but not the body of Christ, union by the Holy Ghost to the man Christ Jesus in glory, so as to form His body); inadequate and defective as is his general idea of gathering into one all the redeemed in heaven and in earth, of which indeed Scripture does not speak, the unity he does know is wholly inapplicable, and indeed contrary, to these unions of ecclesiastical bodies. They have not the pretension to be all saints.
I do not now discuss whether multitudinous bodies are right or wrong; but they are multitudinous bodies, not a gathering of saints, as such, to Jesus' name. They are not, cannot pretend to be, the body of Christ, nor a part of it, nor even the true family of God. Further, their object is to impose religion on the state, to make the state act on Christian principles. The gathering together in one the children of God which were scattered abroad does not enter their minds, but getting the state to act Christianly; and they insist on the authority and independence of the church exactly on popish grounds, not that of a little despised flock suffering under its persecution, but pressing its own principles on the state. That Christianity has modified men's habits is quite true. Men do not do in the light what they do in the dark. But making the world Christian in its ways is not gathering the children of God. It is a return to
Judaism, as indeed the " Covenanters," true-hearted people as they were, clearly did. They took the sword, and perished with the sword.
As to the unity of the body, it does not seem to cross their minds, formed on earth as it was by the baptism of the Holy Ghost. But the whole Free Church principle was a delusion. Christ is not the King of the church. Where is such a thought in Scripture? "King of saints" in the Revelation is a false reading for "King of nations," borrowed from Jeremiah. King of the Jews Scripture and the world's mockery own Him to be. That He will rule over the nations is clearly revealed. He will take to Him His great power and reign when divine wrath comes. The kings of the earth did rise up against the Lord and against His anointed. They will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them.; for He is King of kings, and Lord of lords. But Christ is not now sitting on His own throne at all, but on the Father's
(Rev. 3:21). God has said to Him, " Sit on my right hand TILL I make thine enemies thy footstool." And there the blessed One is in glory, gathering now -His joint-heirs, by the Spirit sent down from heaven through the gospel, joint heirs, once all united, and the manifested body of Christ, but whom the wickedness of man and craft of satan have long ago scattered,-caught the sheep and scattered them-yea, made of that which was the church the most heinous corruption under heaven.
The union of Presbyterian or other bodies- may remove partially the reproach of Protestantism; with the unity of God's children as a family it has nothing to do, and, as to the unity of the body of Christ by the Holy Ghost here below, wholly ignores it.
King of the church is an utterly anti-scriptural thought. When He will reign, we shall reign with Him. He is now sitting at the Father's right hand awaiting that time. Meanwhile, as children of one heavenly family, in relationship with the Father, as members of one only body, the body of Christ, the church, we should be one by the Holy Ghost. For Christians the crucial truth now is the unity of the body formed on earth. Where is it? As I have often said, if Paul addressed a letter to the Church of God which is at Edinburgh, who would get it? It would go to the dead-letter office. Alas! that it is so. May our hearts and consciences feel for the ruin of the Lord's once beautiful flock; look with desire for the unity of the scattered sheep; and the unity of His Spirit manifesting His body on earth. The arrangements of ecclesiastical bodies cannot effect this.
That I have not misstated the link of Church and State as desired by Free and Reformed Churches, we have only to read. Dr. Goold claiming acceptance of " Covenanters' " principles, Dr. Rainy, and Mr. M`Dermid, where it is stated in language stronger and more positive than that which I have used. The church claimed to have free entrance into every chamber of the national life. They are to bring nations, in their national capacity, into religious subjection to God, and conformed to His will. I only
notice it now, not to controvert it as a system-a system in which Popery has a far better chance-but to show that their system, and their unity, have nothing whatever to do with gathering together in one the children of God which were scattered abroad, or with the Unity of the body. 'What is called for is the full recognition of and submission to the authority of the Word of God, the Scriptures, the recognition of the presence of the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven consequent on the accomplishment of redemption, and Jesus as man being at the right hand of God, sent down to abide with us forever, and dwell in believers and in the assembly, and the waiting for God's Son from heaven. The unity of the Spirit is the only true unity, till God heads up all things in heaven and earth in one under Christ. He gave Himself to gather together in one the children of God which were scattered abroad. The unity of the body God will maintain till it be displayed in glory. The members of Christ's body will not be separated from Him; but the manifestation of this on earth, by the power and grace of the Holy Ghost, according to 1 Cor. 12, was the calling of the saints, and, though shorn of much of its glory, their responsibility now. They have the promise of all needed grace and gift in Eph. 4, according to His faithfulness who gave Himself for us to redeem us from all iniquity, and to purify to Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

Have We a Revelation From God?*

IT is evidently an all-important question, Have we a revelation from God? a communication of His thoughts on which we can rely? Is there nothing certain, nothing certainly known, nothing which enables. me to say, I have God's truth? Have I from God such a revelation of His mind as is authentic and authoritative, such that I can know from Himself what God is?
I cannot trust in man. Man who has not had such a revelation is lost in what degrades human nature. I cannot trust the church or doctors. They too have their history, and what a history it is!—and in these days they are a reed which, if a man lean on it, breaks and pierces the hand. Where am I to turn to be able to say, Here I have the truth I can love and rest on? Here is what God has given me from Himself? To have this I must have two things-a revelation from God, if every man is a liar, here is truth. But I must have it also communicated authentically to be able to reckon it. It is a matter of fact that men have not known God, nor His character, without a revelation. Universal heathenism, civilized and uncivilized, is the witness of it. They have not liked retaining Him in their knowledge when He was revealed to them. It is no use telling me that the worship of Lingm and Yoni, of cats and monkeys and fetishes, is a true knowledge of God. It may prove that man wants a God, that he cannot help having one; but, if so, that he cannot find Him, or will not have Him.
The case then stands thus: I look all around to find God and His truth. The heathen cannot point Him out; I cannot find man among them that is not degraded. He deifies his passions and adds degradation to them.
I am told perhaps, But Plato, does he tell us nothing of God? Well, if I leave the universal heathenism, and enclose myself in the narrow groves of the academy, I find one who teaches the grossest communism, women and all, and makes men and women a mere stock for breeding human beings for the republic, and holds that the supreme God can have no direct communication with the creature; but that it must be by demons, and immediately, perhaps, the λόγος. He was, with the Rabbinical Jews, strange to say, the inventor of purgatory. The later forms of it brought in Arianism. I cannot find it among Mahomedans, nor their paradise of Houris above and the sword below. The Koran, which on the face of it is a wretched imposition-revelations invented for the occasion that called for them-the Koran or the sword is not a revelation of God, save as a judicial scourge of Christendom. The Jews cannot tell me of God, cast out from Him according to their own Scriptures. Am I to learn it in the intrigues of the Jesuits, rendering every nation under heaven restless? or in the infallibility of the Pope, which nobody, but grossly ignorant partizans, believes and history gives the lie to? am I to worship the golden idols of the mother of God set up on steeples and highways where there is power to do so? Is this to be my resting-place?
Shall I turn to Protestants? But the mass of teachers amongst them are infidels in most parts. Perhaps I may have the choice of Puseyism or liberalism, or countless opinions and heresies which contradict and destroy each other. Am I told that there is a real consent in the evangelical creeds? I do not quite admit it; Luther did not think so. They all agree in one thing-baptismal regeneration. But if I inquire whether the teachers believe in the formularies they sign-not one of them: they are obsolete. What am I to do? Say with Pilate, What is truth? and wash my hands in despair and give up Christ to His enemies? But we have the word of God to rest on.
Ah, here there-is something-God worthily revealed. But-`the most unkindest cut of all'-it is not, I am now told, the word of God. It is a compilation of various traditions and documents some seven or eight centuries after it professes to be Written, drawn God knows whence (only not from Him), and by God knows whom; partly a law produced some seven or eight hundred years after it professed to be written, with some of its documents recognized as already existent, perhaps, at that date; professed prophecies put together by some compiler frequently under some name they do not belong to; a long conflict having subsisted between the moral element and the ceremonial or priestly, but the former got the victory in Ezra's time, but only then, though they never had the law as it is till Josiah's time! and yet, strange to say, they got the victory only to fix the nation in ceremonialism and the authority of priestly tradition which it had never been before! Besides the two chief documents, however, from which the early history is compiled, and other parts suited to them by the compiler, another author has been discovered whose writings are intermingled with the two chief ones, and whose object is to attach importance to the progenitors of northern Israel. Prophets claim an intuition coming from God; still their great object was not future events.
Such are the Scriptures. They are, if we are to believe these learned men, not the word of God, but an uncertain compilation flowing from the progress of 'Israel's history, partly from priests, under whom the laws grew up, never complete till Ezra, partly from prophets contending with their principles (not, mind, with their sins against God or their breaches of the law, it was not formed yet), partly from lay life in the midst of the people. These are the factors (that is the word) of the Old Testament. As to the New: well, four epistles may be Paul's, the expression of the higher spiritual life in the Christian; the rest spurious or doubtful, and much of it comparatively a modern attempt to reconcile the Pauline and Petrine factions in the Church, or a late fruit of Alexandrian philosophy and reveries or Jewish symbolism.
It is no great wonder if a very large body of the French Protestant clergy declared they would sign nothing, no Apostles' Creed, nor anything else; they supposed men would have to believe something, but they did not know what it was yet; and the poor laity, not so learned, but more of babes, said, as I know them to have done, " Pourtant, si nous sommes des Chreti3ens, nous faut un Christ quelconque" (Well, but if we are Christians, we must have some kind of Christ). Such is the point to which what is called the church has brought us. Not now priestly ceremonies and traditions combated and corrected by prophets professing divine intuition, but priestly and ecclesiastical ceremonies and traditions bringing weariness to the spirit (where it does not rush to popery as a refuge), merging into heartless and flippant infidelity, living in a speculative pseudo- historical outside, without one spiritual apprehension of the divine substance of what lies at their door and before their heart-speculations which last some twenty years or so, first Paulus' gross denial of miracles and resurrection, then Strauss with his mythical Christ, and then Baur and the Tubingen school, the false speculative fancies of which are already judged, and given up; and now the later forms of these and De Wette and the like, warmed up anew for Scotland; as the English in such things generally do when they have passed their day in their native country.
It is admitted that Professor Smith has exaggerated what a child may see in Scripture, and, I add, through ignorance of Scripture not understood it, and that his system as to the books of the New Testament cannot hold water. I shall be told that for all that Astruc's theory and Baur's reasoning have produced, an immense effect. They have in those not taught of God; not in substituting any certain system, but in turning lifeless. dogmatism into speculative infidelity and skepticism.
And where is the word of God? where it always was, as light is in the sun. Men may have found olive leaves, and these be broken up into small patches of light, or hang over the spots in a way not to be explained. It may be found that the spots are coincident with auroras and magnetic disturbances; but those who have eyes walk, as they ever did, in its full and clear divinely-given light. It shines as it ever did, and the entering in of the word gives light and understanding to the simple. They have a nature that can estimate it in the true character God gave it, which these learned men have not; for He hides these things from the wise and prudent, and reveals them unto babes. " They shall be all taught of God," is the declaration of the Lord and the prophet for those who can hear.
That the Old Testament Scriptures were collected into their present form a good while before the Lord was on earth, no one is interested in contesting; indeed, far from it, for Christ owns the divisions which now exist. Attributed to the great Sanhedrim, on (it is said) insufficient ground, or referred to Ezra, they were at any rate so collected; though Mr. Smith slurs it quickly over to refer to' doubts as to Esther. Josephus is very express. There are not, he tells us, a multitude of books, but just twenty-two: that they had histories and writings after Artaxerxes, but they had not the same authority, they were not tested by prophets. That the books were collected, we can thank God for. Whether the history of Ruth be connected with Judges, or the Lamentations with Jeremiah, or relegated to the Ketubim, is of no sort of consequence. Their 'place in the history is plain upon the face of them. It is not to the believer a question who wrote Ruth. He receives them as the word of God. God is their author. It is, as Matthew expresses
it, ὑπὸ Κυξίου διὰ τοῦ πξοφήτου- of the Lord by the prophet. It is also true that, in collecting the books, short notes may have been added, such as, There they are to this day, or other brief note of the kind. Such there are, interesting as divinely-given history, but in no way affecting the revelation. The book clearly shows that as a whole it is inspired and ordered in its structure by God; and when all this was done to make it a whole, this divine ordering of God's hand and wisdom may be in such notes as elsewhere. The question is, Is this book given to us of God as a revelation, given to us as it is? Is what is in it revealed of God, or man's thoughts?
The book professes to be an account of all God's ways from the creation (and even in purpose before it) till the Lord comes, and even to the end of time, till God can say γέγονε, It is done; I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending. It professes further to give us a revelation of the Father in the Son. Is this immense undertaking, a revelation of God, or a development of national life in a little petty nation, for our learned men can see no more? No man bath seen God at any time: the only-begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He bath declared Him. Is that a revelation of God or not? That is, is the account I have of it of God, as God has given it to us? for otherwise it is no revelation to me or to any one else.
Serious questions these. The very undertaking proves its source. Had man done it, what should we have had? What have we outside this wondrous book? Their theory is, it is an imposture; for giving statements hundreds of years later than their alleged date, as if all were written by inspiration at that date, is an imposition, and this from a nation constantly running into idolatry, and condemned by the book! And further (can any but learned men be blessed with such credulity?) persuading the people whom the forgers were condemning by it, that they had always had this law as a law from God Himself, when, if these doctors and the Josiah theory be true, they never had had it at all, it was bran new, or some old traditions furbished up from different old documents for the occasion; and remark further- for this we must now look into-that Christ and His apostles either from God confirmed the delusion or deceived the people, and all those they taught, on purpose! That an imposture, moreover, is the holiest production that ever appeared in the world, bearing to every one that has any moral sensibilities a divine stamp upon it, which nothing else in the world has, credat Judaeus Apelles. As Rousseau said, it would have been a greater miracle for man to invent such a life as Christ's, than to be it.
I will touch on some of the grounds they build their theory on; but I first turn to the book itself. First of all, it is treated as a whole by Christ and His apostles as having a well-known and specific character. "The Scripture cannot be broken" (John 10.35). "Then opened he their understanding, that they should understand the Scriptures" (Luke 24:45). " Search the Scriptures" (John 5:39). They were a recognized collection which the Lord owned. And, yet more precisely, owned as we have them now and the Jews had them then. All things must be fulfilled which are written in the Law of Moses, and in the Prophets and in the Psalms, concerning Me. Here is the Torah, Nebiim, and the Ketubim,-the three divisions which the Jews distinguish by the Gradus Mosaicus, Gradus Propheticus, and the Bath Kol; in the two first, authorized by Num. 12:6-8, the latter human, in which their idea is that the writer, though inspired, expressed the sentiments animating his own mind, not knowing that all that was contained in it was the mind of the Holy Ghost; which is doubtless true often in such books as the Psalms.
Christ owned, then, what we call the Old Testament, and owned it as we and the Jews have it. But He goes farther; He owns them according to their present character and authors. "Hid not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keepeth the law?" (John 7:19). " Moses, therefore, gave you circumcision, not because it is of Moses, but of the fathers" (22). There is one that accuseth you, even Moses in whom ye trust; for had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed Me; for he wrote of Me. But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe My words? " (John 5:45-47). " If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the Scripture cannot be broken " (10: 35). This alludes to the Judges being called Elohim in Hebrew. They shall bring him to the "judges" being very commonly Elohim in, god or gods. "Abraham said unto him, They. have Moses and the prophets, let them hear them. And he said, Nay, Father Abraham; but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent. And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rose from the dead " (Luke 16:29-31). How true it has been with these poor Jews and these unhappy infidels! Christianity and the resurrection of the Lord are of no avail if Moses and the prophets are not believed, and believed in their writings, for surely they had them. " He wrote of Me. If ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe My words?"
Remark further here that Septuagint translations, the " Compiler's" additions, and all that these speculators allege, were there then the same as now, the same collection, the collection as we have it; and Christ owned and insisted on the authority of that, and that as being Moses' writings.
But further, after His resurrection, not even when dealing with Jews who owned them, but of and from Himself for His disciples, the risen Lord, "beginning at Moses and all the prophets, expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself" (Luke 24:27). Think of the risen Christ expounding to his disciples a set of ill-compiled and contradictory old documents, pretended to be Moses and the prophets. But this is not all; they will say perhaps-for what will the folly of learned infidelity not say?-they were only the things concerning Himself which He selected. "These are the words which I spake unto you while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the law of Moses, and in the Prophets, and in the Psalms, concerning Me. Then opened He their understanding that they might understand the Scriptures, and said unto them, Thus it is written." Ah! the written word is what He valued. Only just think of the risen Lord opening with divine power His disciples' understanding to understand a spurious compilation professing to be written by Moses and others! That He should do so that we might understand the Divine Word we can well conceive, and, if taught of God, we know the need of it; but to do it for an imposition, pretending to be what it is not, an infidel speculator alone would believe. But the "unjust knoweth no shame."
Again, the Lord recognizes the prophets as we have seen, and specifies the one most called in question, Daniel, " the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet." The reading is called in question in Mark, but not in Matthew, and the reading in Mark confirms the genuineness in Matthew, and further recognizes the commandments as given by Moses to be spoken by God; for God commanded, saying, Honor thy father and thy mother (Matt. 15:4); and again Isaiah (verse 7), Well did Esaias prophesy concerning you, saying.. This is in the first part. But He takes up also the second part of the " Great Unnamed." There was delivered to Him the book of the prophet Esaias, and when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written (ah! that is the word), The Spirit of the Lord is upon me And He began to say, This day is this Scripture fulfilled in your ears. He was content to accept it as Isaiah, and affirms, what is of far more importance, and only really so, that it was of God Himself
(Luke 4:17-21). In. the same chapter He authenticates the books of Kings and the history of Elijah and Elisha. He indirectly authenticates again the last part of Isaiah (Luke 7:27) in the prophecy of John Baptist (Isa. 40:3). I need hardly quote more passages.
The discourses, life, and outgoings of the Lord's soul, though going necessarily far beyond it, and showing it was to be set aside, as under the old covenant, for the accomplishment of far more glorious counsels, that the law and the prophets were until John, since then the kingdom of heaven was preached, -the whole discourses and life of Jesus, I repeat, if the Gospels be read in simplicity of heart, will be found interwoven with the truth of the law and the prophets as they are presented to us in ordinary Bibles, authenticating them as they are, so that you must tear away all the revelation of Christ in them to remove the authority of the law and the prophets. He did not come to destroy but to fulfill them. Fulfill what? A poor compilation of Ezra's time, or fragmentary documents made up by man, gradually grown up into a law unknown at the beginning? or the word of God given by inspiration to Moses and those whom Jehovah had sent? He was born in Bethlehem, because by God's will the prophet had said so. He dies, because if not, how then shall the Scriptures be fulfilled that thus it must be? Till heaven and earth passed, not one jot or one tittle would in anywise pass from the law till all be fulfilled.
I may turn then to the servants of Christ when He had been rejected, the apostles and writers of the New Testament, The apostles, those authorized and sent by Him to announce Christian truth, and inspired by the Holy Ghost for this service, and the other inspired writers of the New Testament affirm, or, which in a certain aspect is stronger, assume, everywhere that the Old Testament, as we and the Jews (enemies of Christianity, but in this witnesses with it) have it, is an inspired record, written by those to whom it is ascribed, and given of God. I can understand that the Baurs and Smiths (who, as rocks that, originating nothing, can only repeat a sound, echo them) think themselves more competent to tell us what Christianity and the truth is than Christ and his apostles. I have met such, men who did not scruple to say so, though checked somewhat by the scandal so speaking of Christ gave; I have met them in Europe and the United States; but all are not quite fit for that yet. Such thoughts are soon sunk in the deep sea of lifeless infidelity.
Let us inquire then what the apostles or others do say. And first I will take what are called the great epistles of Paul, what Baur takes as the sure ground of historical Christianity. To begin with the Romans, though chronologically the last of the four. Paul, he tells us, was separated to the gospel of God which He had promised before by the prophets in the Holy Scriptures concerning His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, made of the seed of David according to the flesh. Here holy Scriptures, holy writings are owned; the prophets are God's prophets; and the whole system announced by them of the promise to the Seed of David running through the prophetic writings and Psalms, from Samuel and all the prophets, is fully and clearly owned. Paul founds his own teaching on them, adding of course the fact of the resurrection. What advantage had the Jew? Much every way, but chiefly what?-that unto them were committed the oracles of God. Such were these holy writings. The special blessing, and they had many, was that they had the oracles of God. Poor Paul! to be so dark, untaught, as I have heard such say, by modern science. But what was the force of this?-man's unbelief could not make the faith of God of none effect. These oracles were so thoroughly of God that His faithfulness was involved in them, in making them good. But He shows Jews and Gentiles all under sin. How is that? It is written 10). The Psalms and Isaiah are warrant for the assertion, and as to the text, the "Great Unnamed" has the passage. (Isa. 59) It may be wearisome to quote so many texts, but they show that it was not merely a quotation to support a point, but that the apostles lived in and based their teaching on what modern rationalists deny.
What (Rom. 4) saith the Scripture? Abraham believed God, etc. Here Genesis is authenticated as the Scripture, the word of God. Next David describeth the blessedness of this man. Here the Psalms are authenticated. Again, 5: 14: it is Gen. 5:13. Death reigned from Adam to Moses. This was until the law. Here the whole history of Genesis as to the fall of Adam under a law as to the forbidden fruit, no law till Moses, but death reigning by Adam's fall, then the law being given by Moses changing the ground on which man stood, not as to sin and death but as to transgression, when there was (as in the two cases of Adam and Moses) an actual law, is treated not merely as a Jehovistic or Elohistic fragmentary compilation, but as God's account of man's whole moral standing with Himself till grace was rejected, in the gospel prophesied of indeed, but now actually meeting man's need as taught by the apostle in this epistle, which, precious as it is, it is not my business to enter into now.
I pass over some passages confirmatory of this use of the Old Testament, and stop for a moment at chap. 9. Here Israel are dear to Him as having law and promises, and even Christ as concerning the flesh. But where was all this shown to be so when they were a rejected people? Not as though the word of God had taken none effect; and then all the history of Genesis is treated as the word of God, and the account in Exodus is cited, first, as declaring that God spoke to Moses, and then as to the history of Pharaoh. And here it is as Scripture says it. This is for Paul the same as God saying it. Next Hosea is cited as the word of God. " He saith in osee." Esaias also crieth, quoted as of the same authority as God speaking in Osee; and this estimate of Scripture we shall find uniform. If he quotes the law (10.), Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law. And here note Deuteronomy is quoted as what Moses says. For the learned men this is the Deuteronomic law first recognized by Jeremiah in Josiah's time. Perhaps from the latest hand of all, at least if we are to believe Graf. But farther it appears that the " Great Unnamed" was for Paul Isaiah himself. For Esaias saith, Lord, who bath believed our report? (Isa. 53) Then Deuteronomy is again quoted as written by Moses, and the " Great Unnamed" again as Esaias, who is very bold (Isa. 65) Then we have the book of Kings authenticated (Rom. 11) God has not cast away His people. How can I know this is God's mind? Wot ye what the Scripture saith of Elias?.. But what saith the answer of God unto him? I can reckon on the Scripture as giving me God's mind and purpose. So if Israel be blinded for a time it is written (11: 8), quoting Deut. 29.; " And David saith;" so the Psalms were a true testimony or God to what was going to happen. Again in Rom. 15 we find Deuteronomy quoted as He;" that is, in the formula of quotation, the Scripture is God speaking. The Psalms and Isaiah himself are quoted as the word of God.
In Corinthians, a book of church details, the quotations are not so many, but it shows that it is taken for granted it is divine. The law is the law of Moses (9: 9); and this is God's mind, taken for granted as being so. "Doth God take care for oxen? " What Moses taught was what God taught. The history of the Exodus and the wilderness was God's history of His people, and His dealings with them recorded for our instruction (1 Cor. 10:1-14). Again (11: 9), the creation of Adam and Eve (Gen. 2) is quoted as a divine account sufficient to build moral duties on. In chap. 15: 54, 55; Isaiah and another of the prophets are quoted as fulfilled in resurrection. In 2 Cor. 3 the account of Moses veiling his face is quoted from Exodus as showing the true character of the law, and Israel's state.
Galatians gives us the same testimony. Take chap. 3. The Pentateuch is referred to as a sure and certain testimony for faith, and Scripture spoken of as God Himself, being His word. "The Scripture foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith," than which nothing can be stronger as to the inspired apostle's estimate of it. Nor is this all. The teaching of Genesis, and promises there made and confirmed (Gen. 12: 22.), and the history of Mount Sinai, are taken in their order as the basis of God's ways. A promise made unconditionally could not be disannulled or modified by additions 430 years after, and all this identified with its fulfillment in Christ in due time. The place the law holds in God's ways, and the epochs of it, are made the basis of his argument and of the true character of Christianity. The promise was what God gave, Christ was its fulfillment, the law came in between, 430 years after the promise, added because of transgressions, till the Seed should come to whom the promise was made. What for the rationalist is an uncertain compilation of uncertain fragments, the development of national life, is for the inspired apostle the orderly revelation, as it is given in our Bibles, of God's ways, His own revelation of them historically, so as to form the basis of the true character of Christianity which was in question among the Galatians. The accounts of Hagar and Sarah are for him sure ground to stand upon. Nor has he ever any other thought. If he answers to King Agrippa, he spoke none other things than those which the prophets, and Moses in the law, did say should come. Finally, we find in 2 Tim. 3 a formal testimony to the holy Scriptures, when the church should have the form of godliness and deny the power, with the direct declaration that all Scripture was given by inspiration of God.
John gives us the formal testimony that the law was given by Moses; and John the Baptist's declaration, quoting the latter part of Isaiah as being of him, and himself the fulfillment of it, as a sure prophecy, and of God. Moses in the law and the prophets did write is recorded as a known and received truth; the Psalms equally so. In chap. 2. " the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up." Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness (chap. 3.) What Moses gave (the manna) was not the true bread from heaven; where Exodus and the Psalms are alike authenticated. " It is written in the prophets " is sufficient for the Lord Himself; not a bone was broken, that the Scripture might be fulfilled; and His side was pierced that
another Scripture might be fulfilled, quoting Isaiah. They shall look on Him whom they have pierced (chap. 19.)
Peter on the day of Pentecost rests on the authority of Joel, of David in Psa. 16 (Acts 2) Moses it was who promised the prophet like himself. Yea, Samuel and all the prophets had spoken of those days, and all the holy prophets are brought in declaring the future blessing that was to come, the heavens receiving Jesus till then. The second Psalm was being fulfilled (4: 25). Peter formally declares that the Spirit of Christ was in the prophets, who studied their own prophecies to know what He (1 Peter 1:11) did signify in them, and quotes Isaiah, what is contained in the Scripture, as of sure authority, warranting what was now going on (2: 6). He accepts the account of the flood in Noah (3: 20). The Gospel of Matthew [which specially presents Christ to us as the Messiah of the promises, Emmanuel, and, on His rejection, the substitution of the kingdom in mystery (13.), the church (16.), the kingdom in glory (17.)] bases, I may say, all its statements on the testimonies of the old prophets. Christ is Son of David, Son of Abraham. So numerous are the quotations that I can only notice the formal character of them, and one or two in particular. The formal character is spoken of (ὑπὸ) the Lord by (διὰ) the prophet, a definite assertion of their true character. He quotes some as giving the events happening, ἵνα order that" the prophecy might be fulfilled, ὅπως "so that" there was a fulfillment, τότε " then" when it is only a case in point. The latter part of Isaiah is " Esaias the prophet."
I need hardly quote more from the writers of the New Testament, besides a multitude of allusions in those I have referred to, to show that Christ and the apostles accepted the Bible as we have it (I mean the collection of the books of the Old Testament as a whole) as of divine authority, as the word of God, inspired, and of absolute authority with them. It is that by which the Lord overcame Satan, to which Satan resorted to cover his guile. Man had to live by every word which proceeded out of the mouth of God.1 Such is Scripture to the believer by its own intrinsic authority, and the words of Christ and the apostles carry an evidence which no cavils of infidelity can shake, while they call themselves Christians; and the authority of Christ Himself and of the apostles weighs more than the speculations of men, based by each on some new fancy of his own, and, though helping on infidelity as it passed and the ruin of man's hopes, passing away with the influence of the mental energy which created it. I only, in addition, beg my reader to remark that these quotations authenticate the writings and the writers, and the writings as being those of the writer whose name they bear, as well as the truths contained in them as given of God, and that with the authority of Christ and His apostles.
We are left then, according to this system, with no certainty at all as to any truth of God. Objectors have subtilly spoken of authority, but there is no certainty. Not even the statements of the Lord Jesus and the apostles give us any; and, if not, these are uncertain and unauthoritative too, and we are left to the dark mists of infidelity and a world which has historically proved itself wicked and blind, without one sure communication from God.
Before I turn to the more interesting and instructive proofs of the unity of the Old Testament from internal proofs, it may be well to consider for a little the article which gives occasion to these comments. It seems to me slovenly both in substance and in form. On the latter I need not dwell; but when a writer tells us of Jesus speaking of the new dispensation founded on His death as a New Covenant, citing 2 Cor. 11:25, I am justified in saying it is slovenly. I thought this might be a misprint, but I really cannot make out to what he This, as all the Lord's replies to Satan, is quoted from Deuteronomy, as the word of God-words proceeding out of God's mouth, sufficient for Him, and sufficient to leave Satan without reply refers. No scripture ever calls this dispensation a New or the New Covenant, though we get all the blessings of it spiritually. Christ's blood in the institution of the Lord's Supper is called the blood of the New Covenant; and Paul (2 Cor. 3) says he was a minister of the New Covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. But this does not call for protracted notice.
But, though the writer speaks of Genesis, having lost sight of the divinely-given use of the Old Testament, all resolves itself into the development of a little nation, with a national God, and more or less priestly superstition. But in Genesis we have the history of the world from the creation to Israel's going down into Egypt and his death, with all the great principles of God's relationship with man, except what are properly dispensational. There is not the law, nor the church, the' two great subjects of God's ways afterward for heaven and on earth. But, leaving them aside, you have all the great root-principles of man's state and relationship with God, and in promise the cradle of all his hopes. Of these we must expect no trace in these heartless systems, but Elohistic and Jehovistic fragments, and interweaving by a compiler, one referring to the priestly party in Israel, the other not; why put together by the compilers, we are not told; but of the state and interests of man, or the glory and purposes of God-though both, as we have seen, are fully wrought into the New Testament, as the basis of eternal truth-no hint, no trace. Man fallen, a world judged (a story to which Christ sets His seal), Christ promised, Israel's hopes founded, and their apostasy, and God's 'deliverance of them foretold, all in vain. Grace and judgment, and all God's ways, Christ promised and come, and unfolding them, as did also the apostles, in all their momentous bearings, must give way to Ewald's " Geschichte," and Mr. New- man's " Hebrew Monarchy," and Baur, and Hupfeld, and Mr. Smith, in speculations which only show they can see nothing where God has, in its germ, laid down everything that Casts light upon a ruined world (for a ruined world it is), and God's dealings in grace with it.
But it is only fair to show that the statements are slovenly: perhaps flimsy or superficial would be a more correct word. The theory is that there was a gradual development of the law. From Joshua to Samuel national feeling was much weaker than tribal jealousy. That there was a general dissolution, through idolatry and all seeking their own, is true, and Ephraim claimed a place hardly owned by others; but this broke out far worse afterward even in David's time, and after Solomon's death divided the kingdom.
During the time of the Judges, we are told, the sanctuary and priesthood of the ark was the chief center of monotheism. Of course it was at all times; there could be no other. There was no mercy-seat but there, there could be no day of atonement without it. Samuel, it is said, was by education a priest; but it was as prophet, not as priest, he accomplished his work. He never was a priest, and could execute no priestly office. Afterward, to show the progress, we are told that he fully sanctioned Ex. 20:24, and did not act on Deut. 33:19. All this is utter neglect of both the letter and the mind of Scripture. There was no sanctuary at all during Samuel's activity. A tremendous judgment had fallen on Israel. Jeremiah refers to it (12.) as prognostic of what would happen to Jerusalem. There are three offices, as is often said, through which God has to do with His people-prophet, priest, and king. The priesthood, which was set to guide even Joshua, had utterly failed. Eli died broken-hearted, his two sons slain, and the ark of God taken. There was no restoration of the ark till the king restored it, though God sustained His own glory. The link of the people with God on the ground of their own responsibility, with priestly mediation, was entirely broken: no day of atonement, it could not be; Ichabod was written on it all. God had "delivered His glory into captivity; His strength into the enemies' hand." But a prophet is sovereign interference, and God could not be debarred that, and He had prepared Samuel as He had prepared Moses. Samuel maintained the worship of Jehovah as an acknowledged prophet and judge. But as a system the people failed here too, and demanded a king; and God gave them a king in His anger, and took him away in His wrath: Then God by Samuel called David, who became king, and brought back the ark, but to Zion, not to the tabernacle; it was no longer at Shiloh, but at Gibeon, without any ark or mercy-seat at all; it was not owned by David. Solomon went there; but David, guided as he was and taught of God, placed singers at the ark to say " His mercy endureth forever."
In spite of all their sins, power in grace had wrought restoration. The record is repeated in Nehemiah of the same faithfulness of God, and in the closing psalms; predictive of Israel's future blessing, prepared to be sung with greater testimony to its truth than ever, after Israel has received at the hand of the Lord double for all her sins (Isa. 40:2), and that in the kingly power of Christ in grace. Hence, in Hebrews Zion is contrasted with Sinai the place of the law and the Old Covenant. Such is the scriptural statement of the matter. The thoughts about Samuel and the difference οf the altars overlooks the whole real history of Israel at that time. Samuel acted with prophetic authority when there was no ark, and the whole priestly order was judicially set aside. The prophets did refer to the moral state of the people largely, but prophesied of a Messiah to come and grace for Israel and a New Covenant. But God owned no covenant as the Old Covenant, but what He had made with Israel in coming Out of Egypt. This is what is expressly referred to.
There is no thought of a development of religious ordinances from a relatively crude and imperfect state. The prophets recalled Israel to a well-known system, but it will be found that the blessings and judgments in Judah, which still owned the temple and Jehovah, were invariably dependent on the conduct of the king, under whom they were placed, and on whose conduct blessing or the contrary depended. We are told, indeed, that the proof of the development view " cannot here be reproduced." It is a pity: still the author does his best. I only remark that, while there was progressive prophetic light, the kings ordered the details of priestly service, as David did, and was inspired for it. As a system, the headship of the priest was given up in Shiloh, though not their exclusive service. We are told that the prophets, when they failed to produce immediate reformation, began from the eighth century, if not earlier, to commit their oracles to writing. Reformation of what? Who were these prophets? The eighth century was Hezekiah's reign. That was about 400 years from Samuel. There were from time to time prophets who gave warnings; but what reformation were they attempting? All this is fable. David set up the new system, and " Solomon built Him a house." Ten tribes went off because of the folly of the king, had no priests but false ones, and afterward two most remarkable prophets, who wrought miracles authenticating their mission; which the Jewish ones did not, because Jehovah was publicly owned, and the whole system they recalled Israel to was fixed long ago, and owned by the people. The reforming prophets from Samuel to the Eighth century is a fancy of the writer's. The former prophets, Samuel, and Kings, give us the history, and that was what God meant them to do. That they were the chroniclers is often repeated and easily shown.
But to return to inquire for the proofs of the development of crude ordinances:-if I read Exodus and Leviticus, they may be wise or not, but they are not crude, but elaborately detailed, and, if true at all, framed according to a pattern shown on the mount. If they were not established by Moses, the whole history is a fable, utterly false from beginning to end; for " Jehovah said unto Moses " is the emphatic authority, save a few to Aaron, where it was special priestly service in what was established; and, I ask, was the pattern shown on the mount a crude thing, to be developed by Moses? But the proofs.-An altar of earth or unhewn stone is commanded, if they made one (Ex. 20), and this Samuel did when there was no priestly service and Shiloh was judged; and so did Elijah when Israel had left the temple. It guarded against idolatrous imagery. But we are reminded that God was to put His name in one place, according to Deuteronomy, and so He did, and faithful kings were constantly destroying the high places (for planting trees was equally forbidden), thinking to bring back things to order, not to make progress or develop. In Ex. 20 He speaks of recording His name in a place, and there He would meet them -blessed promise But the next thing in the same book is the history of the tabernacle, to which in the wilderness they were bound to bring every animal they killed in the camp or out of the camp, under pain of death; and in the same Jehovistic account, if you will have it so, they are to appear before Jehovah at the three great feasts. Talking of development as to this is really nonsense; the earthen altar is the first ordinance given-a development, I suppose, on the crude details of the tabernacle given after, and then we jump to Samuel
The quotation of Deut. 33 is a prophecy of the last days of Israel in the blessing of Moses, the man of God. Even so they call the people to the mountain. What mountain? There they shall offer sacrifices of righteousness. Why should it not be the mountain of Jehovah's 'house established on the top of the mountains? This is a prophecy for the last days too. In Deut. we have the three great feasts, and their going to the appointed place obligatory, and images and groves forbidden, -all Jehovistic. The full directions as to going to the place where God had set His name are in Deut. 12, when the Lord should have given them rest, and what they might eat at home and what not. But this had been even more strictly imposed in the camp, because in the land the distance might be too great, an altar of brass being made, in the same book and place, according to the pattern shown on the mount.
Deuteronomy is a peculiar book, penned evidently for the confusion that might be found in Israel when scattered about the land. The Levites hold a much more considerable place, and the people. The Levites are not priests, as the article says, but the priests are very rarely mentioned, and provision made for this state of things, yet anything but development of ordinances. It is for the land entirely. Exodus and Leviticus, with very rare exceptions, exclusively for the wilderness. Probably, from what Amos and Stephen say, not one sacrifice, unless the regular daily ones, was ever offered. The history, though doubtless their duty then, is one of types, and written for our instruction, on whom the ends of the world are come; and though this be said of their history, yet the types of the sacrifices and the like are precious to every one that knows Christ. He knows. Christ, our Passover, is sacrificed for us; he knows what Pentecost prefigured; and, if intelligent in the things of God, what Tabernacles are too, not yet fulfilled; but to these things I will revert. Thank God, they were perfect at first, and only properly so then. All was made according to the pattern shown to Moses on the mount. Rationalists may despise the New Testament too, and despise Alexandrian Epistles to the Hebrews; but we have not yet learned that the most wonderful display of grace, holiness, and wisdom, wrought into a whole that none can rend, is only an imposture.
But the other proofs?-Ezekiel's temple. This is instruction for the restoration, not the historical one. Then, instead of Jehovah-Shammah and the Prince, they were miserable captives to the kings God had set over them in His anger; at least so Nehemiah thought. It is prophecy for a time after Gog is destroyed, so that all the nations may know that Jehovah is Israel's God, who had led them into captivity, and brought them out, and left none of them there at all. For there will be such days, let rationalists think what they like. It is a prophecy; in nothing an historic proof of any development made after the Exodus. When Ezra fixed the legal state of Israel, he did not fix Ezekiel's temple. This is really child's-play, fit only for rationalists. This, the writer tells us, is his " clearest proof," unless we may suppose the unreproduced ones may be.
But there remains yet one as to which the writer makes a pretty round assertion-Josiah's book. " The legislation of this book does not correspond with the old law in Exodus, but with the book of Deuteronomy." So it is stated. I must suppose he refers to there being one place of worship; but this was more strictly fixed in Exodus when the tabernacle was set up, that is at first, than in Deuteronomy, only one for the land, the other for the wilderness. But of the contents of the book there is not one word in the Kings. I do not exclude from what Josiah says Deuteronomy more than Exodus or Leviticus, in which last we have the most terrible threatenings of all (see 26.) Josiah heard the words of the book of the law, and his heart was tender, but he had no idea of a new book or a new law. It was the book of the law that was found. In the long reign of Manasseh it had been utterly neglected; but he speaks of it as no new thing. '" Great is the wrath of Jehovah, that is kindled against us, because our fathers have not hearkened unto the words of this book."
I have now completed the consideration of the produced proofs of the development of crude ordinances under the Jaw. Rebellion, idolatry, desertion of Jehovah, gracious dealings on His part, and " hewing " them by prophets there was, and growing light as to Messiah; a new order of the details, of service as to song and temple service by inspiration through David; a provision for walk in the land and failure in Deuteronomy; but of development from the pattern shown in the mount not a trace. The writer tells us Ezra came with " the book of the law of Moses." But, according to him, it was not the law of Moses; but, if the Pentateuch be not all false, an improved code on what God had established by Moses. How " a nation which had attained a high degree of literary culture " was to be enlightened "in spite of the crass and unspiritual character of the mass of the people," I may leave to rationalists to explain. It is grammatico-historical exegesis, I suppose. Was I unjust in saying the article was superficial in form and substance?
I refer to one passage more. He alleges 1. Sam. 8: 7 as contradicting Deut. 17. But how God in anger, as Himself rejected and giving the people their own way, and telling them how it would turn out, is a contradiction of a statement of how it ought to be done, is beyond me. If my reader is not weary of such futilities, I am; they are characteristically rationalist
I may turn to Astruc's and his followers' Jehovistic and Elohistic documents. According to Mr. F. Newman, they can be separated by mechanical means-a pair of scissors, for instance. With this I agree. It is an apposite statement. They can be separated with nothing else. But are these learned men incapable of making a difference between God abstractedly as a supreme and self-existing Being, and a relative name in which He makes Himself known to men, so as to be in special relation with them? My father is a man; but, besides that, he is my father without ceasing to be a man. Supposing I took the. New Testament and said there must be two documents which scissors could separate because He is called God and Father? But Father is as much given as a relative name in the New Testament as Jehovah in the Old.
Abstractedly I have no objection to more documents than one, provided I have the result from "the mouth of God;" but in their reasonings after Astruc I see no proof of anything else than the absence of moral or any sense, and that, being empty in mind of Divine truth, this fancy of Astruc's was one they could spin cobwebs out of. What fly but a rationalist would be caught by Hupfeld's third author of the northern party, and Mr. Smith's curious remark on it" His literary individuality is, in truth, sharply marked, though the limits of his contributions to the Pentateuch are obscure "? That is strange! " literary individuality sharply marked, but the limits of the contributions obscure: " their character very sharply. marked, but obscure where they begin and end. Who will explain that for me?
But how does Scripture present the subject? God is God, but God has entered into relationship with men. These relationships are fourfold in Scripture, all referring to God abstractedly as such: El Shaddai (God Almighty); Jehovah (unhappily translated in English LORD in capitals, as a rule; better in French, I'Eternel); Father, which, save in mere figures, is entirely a New Testament name; and Elton, Most High, which, while revealed in promise, is God's millennial name, will be displayed as possessor of heaven and earth, all antagonistic power being set aside. And these are clearly thus set forth in Scripture, though the last be less clearly, as being yet future.
The two first are expressly distinguished. Thus Exodus, 6: 2, 3: " And Elohim said unto Moses, I am Jehovah; and I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob by the name of El Shaddai, but by my name Jehovah was I not known to them." Not that He was not Jehovah, but He did not give Himself that name in His ways with them. See Gen. 17;28, and 32. With Israel He was then Jehovah, as the great question was settled on Mount Carmel; " Jehovah, He is Elohim."
With Christians, the Son Himself being come, the Father is revealed, as the Lord Himself says
(John 17): "I have manifested thy name to the men thou gavest me out of the world..... Holy Father, keep through thine own name. And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it, that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them." So Paul: " When the fullness of time was come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons; and because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father." Blessed privilege I peculiar to those to whom, through faith in Jesus, He has given the title to take the place of sons, for we are all the sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
The first time we get Most High, is when Melchisedek comes out to meet Abraham. Not that God was not ever the Most High, but He had not taken it as a revealed name with His people on the earth. Here was a greater than Abraham, who blesses him after his full victory over his enemies. And God takes this title, not in connection with Abraham (that was El Shaddai, though he owns Him as such and as Jehovah too), but with the mysterious personage, figure clearly, according to Psa. 110, as developed also in the Hebrews-of Christ, King of Righteousness, King of Peace, now sitting on the right hand of the Father, on the Father's throne (Rev. 3:21), not yet on His own, a priest after the similitude of Aaron now; though not after his order, but who shall come forth at the sounding of the seventh trumpet, when Jehovah-Elohim Shaddai shall take to Him His great power and reign; the Ancient of days who sits on His throne, but the Ancient of Days who comes (Dan. 7), whom the King of kings and Lord of lords, the blessed and only Potentate, shall show, but who is King of kings and Lord of lords; when, after the last confederacy against Israel (Psa. 83), through the judgment of the confederate enemies, men shall know that He whose name alone is. Jehovah is the Most High, Elion, in all the earth, as the punishment of the host of the high ones on high shall have shown Him Most High there (Isa. 24:21), the Son of God and Son of man, to whom all judgment is committed. So when the Gentile power, which God set up when He took His throne from Jerusalem, Nebuchadnezzar, comes to his senses, he writes; " I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up my eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the Most High, and I praised and honored Him that liveth forever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and His kingdom from generation to generation" (Dan. 4:34). I do not quote Dan. 7 for Most High, save verse 25, because the word is plural and means, I doubt not, the high " or " heavenly places." In verse 25, however, the beast speaks words against Elion bringing in judgment by them. But the kingdom of the Son of man is then set up. The little stone will have dashed the feet and toes of the image to pieces in judgment, and becomes then a great mountain which fills the whole earth (Dan. 2)
Who then is this Most High? This is the question so beautifully discussed in a poetic dialog in Psa. 91 There are two great subjects in Scripture when personal reconciliation to God is settled. Sovereign grace puts poor sinners in the same glory as the Son of God, that He may be the first-born among many brethren, which is not our subject now,-displayed in the transfiguration.
The other is the government of this world (See Deut. 32:8,9), of which the Jews are the center, as the church is of the heavenly glory under Christ. Our present subject is the Old Testament, the earthly part. Here then Jehovah, the Jewish name of Elohim, is in question. Who then is the Most High? He who has this secret will be blessed. He who dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of Abraham's God, the Almighty. Who shall say where the Most High is to be found? Messiah says, I will take Israel's God (Jehovah) as the Most High; I will say of Jehovah, He is my refuge. Ver. 3-8 is the answer. Then Israel speaks, Because Thou hast made the LORD (Jehovah) which is my refuge, even the Most High, Thy habitation, there shall no evil come nigh Thy habitation. Ver. 10 13 continues this. This is the passage by which Satan sought to tempt the Lord Jesus to try Jehovah if He would be as good as His word, acting in self-will out of the path of obedience: efforts which crumbled to nothing in impotency before the authority of that word which rationalists deny, but which the Lord trusted and authenticated as proceeding out of the mouth of God. In verse 14 to the end, Jehovah declares His mind, closing grandly the dialog, and putting His seal on Messiah's confidence in Himself, on whom He had set His love as having taken the form of a servant. Here Jehovah, Israel's God, is shown to be the Almighty and Most High, in the latter character bringing in the blessing of the earth: Jehovah, my God, even the most High, has the blessing promised to Abraham. " Father " is of course left out, the name which belongs to the heavenly family when the Jews are cast off for having rejected Jesus, a state of things coming in between the end of the sixty-nine and the last half of the seventy weeks of Daniel, " the time of Jacob's trouble." (See Dan. 9)
Hence, in the Scriptures of the Old Testament, Jehovah is the name regularly taken up by the writer, whose whole calling was by the revelation of it (Ex. 6), and by all the prophets of the nation whose God He was. But it was of all importance to them that He was that God who is the אשד אהיד אשד " I am that I am," God ever existing, subsisting in Himself and creating all else. And this is one great truth of what I may call the translation of the name in the Apocalypse; not " who was, and is, and is to come," but who is (ὁὤν), who was the God known of old, the promiser withal, and who is the coming one ὁ ἐξχόμενος, when He will be Ancient of days, and Most High, possessor of heaven and earth, and His name known (even that Jehovah, and Jehovah alone is so) over all the earth.
Hence, too, it was all important that this same Jehovah should be known as Abraham's God who had, and first had (save Christ prophetically) the unconditional promise. (See the historic basis of all this which Josh. 24 gives us.) Even Shem's race had fallen into idolatry (of which there is no trace before the flood), and Abraham's own family. Then God calls out Abraham out of the order and connection He Himself had formed, country, kindred, and father's house, to be to Himself, to a country He would show him. Sovereign grace which chose him, the calling of God, and the promises were the great principles brought out when the world was not only wicked before God, but had put demons in. His place. The revelation of the church was only after Pentecost: but Abraham is the root and starting-point of the blessed race. Adam was the head of a fallen race; individual saints we have from Abel, and the judgment of wickedness in the flood, and government set up in Noah to restrain it; but in Abraham first the head of a race that belonged to God in the earth, be it according to the flesh or the Spirit, the root of the olive tree of God (Rom. 11)
Many are the important lessons connected with this, but I cannot touch on them now. Jehovah, the God of Israel, was the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob. This was His name forever, this His memorial for all generations (Ex. 3:15). God as God, the Being who is, not a creature who begins
(ἔστι, not γίεται), but exists in Himself,-the Almighty, who called the vessel of promise without condition, and Jehovah the God of Israel under whom the Jews took the promises under condition of obedience, must be identified.
Hence, while it was of all importance to keep God's essential name of God, and God self-existent contrasted with every creature, and to keep this essential character present before their minds, it was equally so to show Jehovah was that God, not a mere country god as those of the heathen. This, and the difference of promise on condition, and unconditional, we shall find running through the Old Testament from the Pentateuch to Nehemiah; and the distinction is the basis of Paul's reasoning in the New Testament.
We find then, when it was what God as God did or was, it is God, Elohim; where it is the account given by those who knew Jehovah, it is Jehovah; and when the solemnity of the name of God as such is to be added to God known in relationship, it is Jehovah Elohim; when in special bearing upon Israel, it is Jehovah thy God, or our God. So constantly as a personal address in Deuteronomy. A spiritual-minded person will always feel the difference between the two. It may be the mere state of feeling sometimes expressed in it; sometimes it is of real importance when God's glory, as such, is concerned in it.
An analogous difference is found in the New Testament. Not only is it said, Come out from the world, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith Jehovah Shaddai; but in Hebrews, where the question is how man can approach God, as such, we never find the Father—-Lit is always God; nor in the Rev. (save 14., where His name is written on the foreheads of the special remnant there mentioned, but it is His Father). It is the throne of the government of the world which is in question, and it is Jehovah Elohim Shaddai, Lord God Almighty, as in 4., 11., 15.
In John's writings, while as to what concerns the nature of God, the name God is used-as " God so loved," " God is love," " God is light "-and the same as regards our responsibility in respect of it: the moment the Divine action in grace is spoken of, it is Father; thus, chap. 4., God is a Spirit, and they that worship Him must worship Him in. spirit and in truth, " for the Father seeketh such to worship Him." This comes out in a striking way in the first four verses of 1 John 1, and in the rest of the chapter. So in 1:18 of the Gospel, and it will be found to run through all his writings. Suppose I were to say, Here is a Patristic and a Theistic document, and use " the scissors " to make the difference: it would prove nothing but alienation from God and moral incapacity. The principle is just the same.
In the Psalms the difference of Jehovah and Elohim is most marked. In the first book it is always Jehovah, the remnant is in Jerusalem, covenant blessings not lost. In 42. they are confessedly outside, worship in Jerusalem is remembered.
There it is God. So in 63. it is God Himself. In 84. it is the tabernacles. of. Jehovah, though still of course God there. In the second book Messiah having been brought in, in 45. it passes from God to Jehovah and the God of Jacob. God Himself having interfered- in their favor, and deliverance having come, He is Jehovah Elion (Most High) and a great King in all the earth, though (48.) He reigns in Zion.
I might go through the book of Psalms (and indeed have done it), and show the constant fitness of the names used. There the truth that God Himself is their God, Most High,. Jehovah, is fully developed: but their Father would not be found from 1. to 150., nor the Spirit of adoption which uses it. It is the government of the world, and that as Jehovah, great in Zion, God Himself, their (Israel's) God. But these instances must suffice; the attentive reader, waiting on the Lord, will readily, on reading the Psalms, apprehend the force of the expressions. To make two writers is simply absurd.
Mr. Smith tells us that "in a large part of the Psalter a later hand has systematically substituted Elohim for Jehovah; " and the proof? Stat pro ratione voluntas. There is simply none: a more utter incapacity for seizing the Divine side of the con tents of Divine writings I never saw than in the remarks on the Psalms. The structure of the book, even as plainly shown in its contents, and the different subjects of the five books or divisions found in it, there is not a glimpse of, though it lies really on the surface of the collection, and indeed shows a Divine hand in collecting them. But this would be too large a subject to enter on here.
I only remark that to get rid of the proof of the absurdity of the Elohistic and Jehovistic scheme, for which even the "mechanical means" would not suffice here, he boldly asserts they have had one name substituted for another, without an attempt at proof, or shadow of it. They are not " reproduced."
The stupid remark as to Elihu, borrowed from Mr. F.
Newman, or perhaps by him too from " some learned German," recalls me to Job. In the most perfect way Elihu comes in, when the friends would have it that this world was an adequate proof of God's moral government, which Job rightly denied, though his heart rose up against God too, and as the interpreter, one among a thousand, he shows there is a discipline of the righteous, blaming the friends, yet showing how Job was wrong too. He stands in a mediatorial character, a kind of daysman, to explain God's way, before Jehovah comes in in His majesty. I cannot conceive more total want of spiritual perception than this borrowed judgment as to Elihu Yet I might have left this, but that I would remark that, in the introduction and in the account given at the end, Jehovah is found in the writer's part; in all the intercourse of Job with his friends, and Elihu, God and Almighty. What can the scissors do here? cut the head and tail off, and lose the key to and the conclusion of the whole story.
Take another case. In the Proverbs it is always Jehovah -)I think there is one exception)-the direction of practical wisdom for those who had Jehovah for their God. In Ecclesiastes it is always God, because it is the vanity of man's path and efforts after happiness here below in contrast with what God is as such. It is not a condition of covenant relations but man as such, and it is not therefore Jehovah.
Now in Gen. 1 and 2. to the end of verse 3 we have the great fact that God created. It is simply this truth known to no heathen (not that Jehovah, God known under a particular name of relationship, but) that God created the universe, and creatures, and man, and rested the seventh day. This completes that all-important statement. We know it by faith. (Heb. 11) Then begins a new subject, not a new account of creation. This is not so. It is barely and very briefly alluded to in connection with there being no man; and then the condition, nature, and moral position of man is detailed, where God put him, under what conditions, the place of animals, and the woman. It is not that God created, but the condition and status of man before Jehovah Elohim That God who was the one true God with whom man had to do, but had revealed Himself as Jehovah to him who told the story of all His ways from the fall, and man without law, and a judged world, and restraint, and promise, and law, and, indeed, the whole condition of man with God till grace came and the Father sent the Son to be the Savior; though of course the historical details up to law are given afterward, God having taken up a people by redemption so to try man. Every principle of the whole history is given us in Genesis, only on the basis of promise, not of law and redemption and God's presence on the earth, which is in Exodus and what follows. But he who learned this plan at the first, connects that name Jehovah-a God of judgment-with the origin of it all. The Elohim of chapter 1. is the Jehovah of Ex. 6, and the narrative of Jehovah recounts all the history, up to law, of the true Elohim who now reveals Himself as testing man under law. To say that there are two accounts of creation is utterly untrue; there is nothing of the kind, no trace of it, but a special statement of man's state and condition as to God and all the creation around him; let it be shown if there be.
In the third chapter we have the writer using the term Jehovah Elohim. The great truth now comes out, but Satan saying in the same sentence, " Yea hath God said? " to Eve; speaking in no sense of revealed relationship, God the Creator had said, so Satan again " God doth know." But the writer says they heard the voice of the Lord God (Jehovah Elohim), and so of all that follows. To make the first verse two distinct documents is just simply absurd. In 4. Eve, taking up a promise, says, though mistakenly, "I have gotten a man from Jehovah." Here we have always Jehovah not Jehovah Elohim, a simple history, not the solemn tale of man's ruin in his relationship with God. Is this a third document? In verse 25 God, says Eve, has appointed me, This speaks merely of the fact of what God, who works all things, had given her. In chap. 5. we have God again as such, nor could you say in the likeness of Jehovah, because it is a relative name, one specially revealed as to God, not that of the Creator, the Divine Being. So Enoch walks with God. The earth (6.) was corrupt before God as such. Yet the writer always speaks of Jehovah and His dealings, 3, 6, 7. And He deals with the earth as so corrupted. Again as " God " commanded him, not Jehovah. Then in 7. Jehovah said to Noah, and as Jehovah commanded him; then as God commanded him, and again as God commanded him, and Jehovah shut him in. Here again if you separate the verse into two, the last part refers to and connects with nothing, for Elohim is the word used when he went in.
In Deut. 4:32-34 where Elohim stands by itself in its proper force of Elohim, did God ever do such a thing as Jehovah our God has done? It is the force of the words, not two different accounts. To Josh. 24 they presented themselves before God as such, and Joshua said, thus saith Jehovah, the God of Israel. That is not only I find cases to which the fancies of Astruc cannot apply, but I find the reason why there are the two words.
One more case remains to refer to, mentioned by the article, that of Joseph. This is to be by Hupfeld's third author, a northern. It agrees, we are told, with the Elohistic author in a great part in the use of the name of God (Elohim), but is widely divergent in other respects. But this slurs over the facts to cover what upsets the theory. The first part of the account is Jehovistic; that is, the writer's account of Joseph uses the name of Jehovah. He says Jehovah was with Joseph. That is, Moses knew the faithful One who bore this name with Israel, as he says, when God commanded. Noah, and he went into the ark, Jehovah shut him in; when he recites what passes between Joseph and the dreaming servants of Pharaoh and Pharaoh himself, he of course says God. What had they to do with Jehovah, or any relationship with Him? In the rest of the recital of facts it is Elohim But a second account is out of the question; they are two parts of the same one. What brought Jehovah and God both into it? Was it a northern author? Jacob in his trial turns back to the God of promise and calls him El Shaddai. And, in Joseph's discourse to his brethren, it is clearly God as such in contrast with his brethren's (man's) doings. In Jacob's blessing Ephraim and Manasseh, while referring to God Almighty, he naturally desires a blessing from God upon them, not covenant blessings from Jehovah, but God's blessing on them. What the widely divergent things are, we are left to guess.
It is well to remember that these German writers start with the assumption that no account which relates miracles can be historical. That is, they beg the whole question to begin with. Inspiration is itself a miracle, Creation, is the greatest miracle of all; the intervention of God's will and power to produce that which would not have been without it. I am quite aware of the question of general laws, which, after all, are only the constant operation of God's will, and cannot therefore preclude its action. Let us remember, too, that the absolute denial of action, independent of general laws, denies Christianity altogether; for resurrection is not a general law nor natural sequence. Death is not a cause of resurrection. But if Christ be not risen, our faith is vain, and, as Paul tells us, the witnesses of Christianity are false witnesses. Let me add the remark here, that, in a book otherwise interesting and useful, the Duke of Argyle has slurred over this point. If miracle cannot be historical, Christ is not risen, and if Christ be not risen, Christianity is not true.
This is not the ground, if I understand the article in the Encyclopedia Britannica, which its author takes; but this will come up if we go on to the New Testament: as yet we are occupied with the Old. Now as to this, if the German theory be true as reproduced in the article, the whole of the Old Testament is an imposition; I mean if the law be not a system established of God by Moses, as we find it, but a late compilation in which crude materials were adjusted and a system developed out of national life. As far as the law goes, it all professes to be words addressed by God to man through the mouth of Moses. Genesis has necessarily another character, equally requiring direct inspiration; for who among men can give an account of creation and the world's history, and a history on which all God's dealings with men (save the church and the law of which we have spoken) are founded in their principles, and, as we have seen, the New Testament is based? Nor, indeed, can the beginning of Exodus be separated from the end of Gen. 1 need not quote texts to show that " Jehovah said unto Moses," and in this way communicated His will to the children of Israel, is the constant language of the law. It is a clear positive revelation of God's words and will by Moses as it stands, or it is an imposture. In Deuteronomy Moses rehearses it all, and speaks to the people, insisting on obedience, and recalling all that had passed in order to enforce it and keep them from idolatry, adding details of civil government for the land. Documents may or may not have been used; but the whole contents are, either a history and the original establishment of God's law for the people, with the deepest typical instruction for us, given by Moses from God, or an imposture.
The adding an account of Moses' death at the end of Deuteronomy does not touch this question. Mr. Smith tells us that copyists added what they liked, and did not feel themselves in the least bound to distinguish the old from the new; there was no notion of anything like copyright, they took large
extracts and harmonized them by such additions and modifications as they thought necessary. A nice thing to rest one's faith on as the word of God, Scriptures that cannot be broken! But lawyers say, " Allegatio ejusdem rei cujus dissolutio petitur nil valet; " and what is the proof the Semitic genius, the Bible, is a stratification, not an organism? What proof has he of the Semitic genius? The Bible. There is no other ancient Hebrew book. And the question is, Is it such an inauthentic compilation? We have nothing but his assertion about the Bible itself, except that there were cells in the temple-that of course not being arranged according to God's direction either, it was the Semitic genius!
I need not say that the prophets openly declare their inspiration, that " The word of Jehovah came to them," "Thus saith Jehovah," and the like; that in the history, as of Kings for example, it is openly stated that they used the royal chronicles; but prophets used them and drew them up, as we have the example in Isaiah, that we might have them as the word of God. That God is not mentioned in Esther is just apposite, as showing the secret providence of God keeping His people when they were scattered and disowned of Him as a nation.
Thus not only the Lord and the apostles have owned the Old Testament as we possess it as God's inspired word, but it presents itself, as to the law as the direct fruit of Moses' communication with God, given fully and in detail originally, and the prophets, as the direct communication of God's mind and words from Himself; and all of it-history, psalms, and all-as an organic whole owned of the Lord Himself, and whose perfection, as such, will be perceived by those whose understandings He has opened, and who learn there the whole scheme of God Himself.
In passing from the discussion of particular points and objections to a direct inquiry into more positive and essential evidence from the contents of Scripture, I recall to every heart that the question is-Is there a revelation from God? Man is departed from God. Is there any revelation from God by which, as far as the revelation of God goes, man can know Him? We know what man has come to without it. Are we to be left as the heathen, if haply we may feel after Him and find Him? or is there really a law given by Moses, and are grace and truth come by Jesus Christ? We have seen that the Lord declares the writings which the Jews received to be the writings of Moses, and does so, not only to the Jews, but to His disciples, and that He opened their understanding to understand them- the apostles the same-basing their arguments on the truth and contents of them. To one who is not audacious in incredulity this is sufficient. To those who affirm that a miraculous history must be unhistorical, that God cannot act, or will not at all now, having once established an order of nature, and so decide the question before it is examined, the statements of Christ or the apostles have no weight. But then it is pure impudence to call themselves Christians. It is flagrant dishonesty to accredit themselves with a name while they reject all it imports. We may earnestly desire their conversion, but that is all. They labor on what they hold to be an imposture, and profess to be followers of the imposture, and would have us believe that the holiest, most gracious, deepest, and yet truest and fullest communication of the knowledge of God is by an imposture. This is hard to think; but it is this we have to do with.
But, again, there are those who believe there is a revelation, yet no inspired divine communication of it to others. Some allege that it is not even claimed. Now, see how rational this is. God has thought good to give a revelation of Himself, His truth, His grace, to men at large for their good; He has made this revelation, but in such a manner that it can go no farther in its perfectness than the person who receives it. It is given communication of it is His work too-thus saith Jehovah, or Jehovah said, in the Old, or in words which the Holy Ghost taught in the New; so that what we have is the word of God. It is " of the Lord by the prophet," or in words which the Holy Ghost taught. God did not leave us floating about in uncertainty. Only when it is presented, it is discerned spiritually, or, if rejected, is hid to them that are lost. With this as to the history, we find it drawn up by the prophets, and sanctioned by the Lord and the apostles.
It may be said that there are errors, and that we have only translations. I recognize that it was committed to the responsibility of man, just as in a certain sense man's personal salvation is; yet he is kept by the power of God, and it is so too, liable to the effects of human infirmity. It is quoted, recognized, and authenticated by the Lord and the apostles, and the Law constantly referred to in the earliest writings of the prophets. As to translations, no one gives any as a criterion of truth; they are a means of communicating it, and the criterion remains as it was, providentially preserved of God; the New (as Mr. S., I thank God admits) adequately proved to be authentic, and, if so, the Old authenticated, as no other book in the world is, by it, that is, by the Lord and his apostles. It is alleged the LXX. is quoted. This is confessedly a translation, and, as commonly known and used, is commonly quoted; but it is not when the writers of the New as taught of God had any reason for doing otherwise. They authenticate it only as to that for which they quote it.
But I turn to a pleasanter part of my attempt. I would speak of the unity of mind in the whole Old and New Testament. Whatever controversy may be raised as to dates, there is no question 'of their being writings separated by wide distances of time. Infidels do not question that. In some shape Jewish literature began with Moses. Jehovistic and Elohistic documents may be compiled, but there were for the good of all, and perfectly given, but it stops at the first person who is the vessel of reception and communication, and to the rest comes only in the imperfection of man as to apprehension and communication; a divine communication for men, but by divine arrangement so communicated that it never reaches men as such. Nothing they can trust as divine is communicated to them. Can anything be more absurd?
But Paul states the case: When it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, and called me by His grace- to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the heathen. There was a revelation to him for this purpose by God, but he could not do it! though for others, it could not reach them, actually given for them, but in such a manner that it could not reach them. This is the theory. But he did not handle the word of God—mark what it was-deceitfully; he did not adulterate the pure wine, but by manifestation of the truth commended himself to every man's conscience in the sight of God (2 Cor. 4) So the Thessalonians received it, not as the word of man, but, as it was in truth, the word of God
(1 Thess. 2:3); so that if (2 Cor. 4) his gospel was hid, it was hid to them that were lost. Their minds were blinded by the god of this world. In 1 Cor. 2 he states it formally: "Which things also we speak, not in words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth.... But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God they are spiritually discerned." They are revealed by the Spirit (10-12); communicated in words which the Holy Ghost taught, that others might have them as God revealed them to Paul (13), and discerned by the Spirit (14). (Comp. verses 4, 5.) And such he asserts everywhere. The things which he wrote were to be received as (and were) the commandments of the Lord. The Old Testament prophets and Moses declare what they communicate is Jehovah speaking; so does the apostle.
Not only, then, is the Bible a revelation from God, but the such documents to compile. There were prophets many centuries before Christ; there were psalms composed by David, the sweet psalmist of Israel, as by others contemporary or more recent, as some assuredly were. There are different authors, different styles, different epochs; the grammar even became changed in its details in the process of ages, as the use of Hu for the feminine and Nahar marks early Hebrew. Various authors and styles, in a word, follow each other through a series of some 1500 years. In the New Testament there is a development of truth and divine counsels, part of which is declared to have never been previously revealed, and in the nature of things could not have been so: I mean the mystery of which Paul, and Paul only, speaks-the union of Jew and Gentile without difference in one body for heavenly places, which it was impossible to reveal while Judaism subsisted, as setting it aside absolutely in its nature. For Judaism kept up, while Christianity broke down, the middle wall of partition.
Now, if with all these authors and epochs (in the last case setting aside the previously existing system, though fully sanctioning it as divine), place, and time,-if through judgment, promise, law, gospel, and the revelation of the church completing the word of God, I find one plan, one mind, through the whole, whose is it? Unconscious of the bearing of it on the whole, each occupied with the present moral bearing of that which was confided to him, ignorant in large measure of what others might have to say, or even setting aside what had existed and occupied others, I yet find all minister to one single plan. I find the clearest and strongest proof that one mind, one inspiring power, which knew the end from the beginning, and had this plan before it, is the real author of what we call the Bible. I insist upon its being a number of books (Jehovistic and Elohistic documents if you please, employed, though I do not accept what is said) of different ages and characters. Prophecy, history, poetry, moral lessons, man before law, man under law, a narrow system to maintain the true unity of the Godhead when all was idolatrous, and a large system to every creature under heaven, which maintained the authority of the law, but set it totally aside as a way of relationship with God, but through all one single thread of divine purpose running, which makes every part subservient in its place to the whole, making over sixty books (or, taking Jewish computation of Old Testament, forty-nine) one single book-the Bible.
I can only in such a paper as this take some special elements as showing this, after stating from Scripture what the divine purpose is, only noticing what is of the last moment, that it is not a mere purpose as to facts to be accomplished, but that these involve the whole moral basis of man's relationship with God: innocence, loss of it, moral responsibility, the law given as a perfect measure of it with divine authority, man doubly guilty by breaking it, remedial means in the testimony of the prophets and in the coming of the Son of God Himself, all in vain issuing in the judgment of the world, and every mouth stopped, and all the world guilty before God, and a perfect salvation by grace on God's part, according to His own nature and glory, laid hold of in promise throughout all ages, and then fully revealed; and finally heavenly glory, and a restored earth under the first and the new covenant, and then eternity; and, I may add, the church's special place in all this, which is peculiar, all made manifest and unfolded in the development of this purpose, and issuing in the fullness of the divine glory, and the infinite and eternal blessing of those who believe.
The purpose is this, as stated in Scripture (Eph. 1), that for the administration of the fullness of times He should gather together in one (ἀναχφαλαίωσαθαι) all things in heaven and in earth in Christ (the Son of God and Son of man), in whom we have obtained our inheritance. In this there are two great scenes-
heaven and earth, and as to them two great objects of revelation under Christ—the church and glorified saints in heavenly places, and the Jews in earthly-the one reigning with Christ, the others reigned over, as is all the world, by Him as Son of man, raised and glorified, with the Father's house, where He is gone, as our home-one being the expression of the sovereign grace which has put us into the same glory as the Son of God; the other, the government of this world. See Eph. 1: 22, 23, and 9-11, and Deut. 32:8,9, for a brief statement of the Jewish part, verses 8 and 43. All are under the Son of man, or united to Him. This latter part, as peculiar to the church, I leave aside for the moment.
God began, not of course with the Second, but with the first Adam-not with the Man of His purpose, but with responsible man. This responsibility, as traced and followed out in innocence, fallen and without law; then (passing by promise, which was of grace and brought out in Abraham) under law; then in sending Christ after patient warnings and encouragements by the prophets, saying, They will reverence my Son; but they cast Him out of the vineyard and slew Him. Then, the probation of man having been thus fully gone through, man is treated as lost: only a full salvation provided for him in the work of the Lord Jesus Christ, in whom, the Second Adam, the Son of man, all the promises and purposes of God are to be fulfilled. He is the man of God's purpose, all promises in Him Yea and in Him Amen; taking the inheritance of all things man was to have in the purpose of God, according to the redemption in which God was perfectly and in every respect glorified. Through all we have the great adversary revealed in all that was needed, that we should know clearly the position of those concerned, but no further.
The result of all this and its general principle is already brought out in the garden of Eden; not a promise to the first man-there is none, but the purpose of God when the first man had failed in responsibility. This responsibility he was put under, tempted by the adversary, and failed. The Lord God judged the woman for listening, but makes known the Second Man, the last Adam. He, the Seed of the woman, was to bruise the serpent's head, the serpent to bruise His heel-the latter in the cross, the former. when He comes in power. This is no promise to the first man, though his faith might lay hold of it, but a revelation of the Second. Adam assuredly was not the Seed of the woman. The history is referred to as unquestionable truth by Paul (1 Tim. 2:9-15), as a ground for minute details as to woman; as a basis of the profoundest doctrine (Rom. 5:12-21), showing sin to have been there by this means before the law, and when there was none; but referring to Hos. 6:7, showing that Adam was under a law (not to eat of the tree of knowledge), but that from him to Moses man had none, confirmed as to the character of judgment (Rom. 2:12), those that have sinned (ἀνόμως) without law being distinguished from those who have sinned under it. So for watchfulness it is referred to in 2 Cor. 11:3. So the whole order and structure of God's plan in Christ, connected with ruin in the first Adam, is unfolded in 1 Cor. 15, specially 20-28 and 45-49, and that in resurrection. The accomplishment in Jews, Gentiles, and the raised saints is founded on Isa. 25:6-8.
But there were other and special promises made to the seed of Abraham according to the flesh, renewed in David and confined to Israel, though mercy was to be extended to the Gentiles on their failure. Of this Genesis is full, and the state of Israel under promise and failure is the whole subject of the Psalms, besides Christ personally brought in as connected with them. (See Gen. 15:17.) These promises, given unconditionally to Abraham, were taken up conditionally at Sinai; so that, though the promises remained, yet under Moses the law was introduced, and on the ground of the old covenant their Accomplishment depended as much on Israel's fidelity as on God's. God said, If ye obey my voice; and Israel said, All that Jehovah hath spoken we will do.
Thus not only historically Israel stood on the ground of the old covenant, but an immense principle was established and question raised, Is man's righteousness the ground of his standing before God, or is God's righteousness that on which a sinner can be accepted? But Israel also thus stood on a double ground-promises made to Abraham, and righteousness under the law; and yet grace, unless God were the God of the Jews only, must reach out to the Gentiles, and this must be in Christ, and as taking His power as head over all things, as we have seen, as Son of man. During the subsistence of the middle wall of partition, the blessing of the Gentiles was not shut out in hope, but left, as they were, in obscurity and darkness. When the -world was idolatrous, the maintenance of the knowledge of one true God made this necessary, and, so perverse is man, was with the utmost difficulty maintained. In the promises to Abraham it is as clearly as possible revealed in Gen. 12, and after Isaac's being offered up as a figure, and so received as raised from the dead, confirmed to the seed. All nations were to be blessed in Him.
When Moses and the law had come in, then it was only on the judgment of Israel that this blessing came out, and that through Christ (see Rom. 11) So Deut. 32:28, the judgment being solemnly insisted on in what precedes both of Jews and Gentiles, though sparing a remnant in Israel, 'owned in verse 43 as His people, but the nations to rejoice with them. We have seen these two recognized in Isa. 25, with the resurrection added, and all united with Christ's reign in 1 Cor. 15, quoting Isaiah.
The contrast of law and gospel is fully discussed by Paul, and the promises without condition, and the law with both promises and gospel, in -Romans and Galatians. In Gal. 3 he insists on the promise without condition, and that the law 430 years afterward could not be added to an unconditional promise confirmed to the Seed, nor that promise disannulled. The law was broken, and that, as it depended under the old covenant on Israel's obedience whether the blessing was to be fulfilled, was easily disposed of. But the promises? They were to be made good through the promised Seed, the Messiah, a fact made clearer and clearer as Israel's disobedience grew more and more manifest, and indeed fully established in the promise to David; but then it must be through bruising the serpent's head and wider than Israel. When failure under priesthood in the land in Eli, and under prophecy in Samuel, and the direct government of God
by these means had been fully. manifested, God's King, the be-loved, was raised up; and this double blessing of Israel and the Gentiles and man's glory as in Christ was brought to light, grace in power, though it was but a remnant in Israel who would finally profit by it.
But here the difficulty of the unconditional promises came in, and the promises to the Seed in whom they were to be fulfilled. The law, as I have said, was clearly broken from the days of the golden calf. But the promises were to be fulfilled in the Seed, in the Son of David. Israel rejected Him, and lost all title whatever to any promises. God had taken away His throne when they went captive to Babylon. The cherubim and the glory that sat there judged the city and went up. But the promises? A residue was preserved and brought back, shorn of its glory as God's people, but still having these promises; and Messiah came, the promised One, a minister of the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made to the fathers, and they rejected Him, and God wrought a salvation effectual for man. His salvation to the ends of the earth yet will accomplish His promises to Israel, only on the ground of pure grace, while He takes those that own the rejected One to be His companions in glory in heaven and to reign with Him. It is this that makes the apostle exclaim, 0 the depth of the riches. Now as Gal. 3 and Rom. 2:3,4. (and 7. yet more experimentally) discuss the law and grace and promise in its moral bearing for any, so Rom. 9-11 discusses it in reference to Jew and Gentile in a dispensational way. In 9. God must be sovereign, or Ishmaelites and Edomites must be let in, and all Israel save Moses shut out, and God would use His sovereignty to let in the Gentiles. Then Israel's rejection and stumbling at the stumbling-stone was all foretold, and God's being found of the Gentiles (10.) But it was not final rejection. Paul was a Jew, so there was a remnant (Deut. 32) The letting in of the Gentiles was to provoke them to jealousy; but lastly, according to infallible promise, the Deliverer would come to. Zion (Rom. 11)
Thus in the law we have, not only a dispensation of God with Israel, but the great question of human righteousness raised for every soul. It was not an arbitrary rule, but God's perfect rule for man, taking up all the relationships in which He had placed man as now fallen, with Himself and each other, and requiring man's acting up to them, and he should live; but the flesh, man in his Adam-nature, was not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be so; then they that are in the flesh cannot please God (no one in Adam's standing). Man's righteousness not only does not exist in fact, but is set aside in principle; but, as we have seen, without law, man was lawless, under it a transgressor, and, when God was manifested, then the Lord Could say, Now they have both seen and hated both Me and my Father. Hence we read, Now is the judgment of this world; but, thank God, Now is the prince of this world cast out. And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me. But now once in the end of the world (the consummation of ages) He hath appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. The heel of the Seed of the woman was bruised, but the work done gave Him a title in righteousness, according to God, to bruise his head. The power of the enemy was, by death, disannulled morally (ἵνα χαταξλήσῃ), and will be wholly set aside in heaven and earth when the Son of man shall come in His glory: not all enemies, it is true, subjected at once, but He having taken to Him His great power to reign and do so.
But not only were the Gentiles left in darkness during the narrow period of testing man under law, and the promises confined in their actual application to a peculiar people, but life and incorruptibility were brought to light only under the Gospel, and access to God allowed. The state under the law was marked by the veil, and the barriers which forbade it; now the holiest entered, God's righteousness being by faith for Gentile as well as Jew, and all the higher glories revealed in connection with resurrection, and a new state of man and a new creation, of which Christ risen and glorified is the first fruits and head, " the second Man from heaven," (ὁ δεύτερος ἄνθρωποδ ἔξ οὐρανοῦ) and now gone back there as Man.
The reader who is acquainted with. Scripture will have seen that I have only made an abstract of its statements in all I have said, and put them together so that we may see that it is one complete plan of God, of which the moral principles and the historical development, though distinct subjects, cannot be separated. But let us see if we cannot, in some leading details, trace it through the Scripture, showing them more in detail, enchained by the plan of one mind. Indeed it begins before the world, of course then in the thoughts of God, but revealed to us, though mercy, not till the gospel came, not till the first man had been fully tried and tested in his responsibility. Thus we read (Prov. 8), speaking of wisdom (and Christ is the wisdom of God and the power Of God- was (before the creation, Which is poetically described) daily His delight, rejoicing always before Him, rejoicing in the habitable parts of His (Jehovah's) earth; and my delights were with the sons of below (Luke 19:38): though, then, it was babes and sucklings that were found to utter His praise to still the enemy and the avenger, or the stones would have cried out. It is when He comes again that evil will be put down.
But to come to the citations of passages of Scripture: in Psa. 2, after giving the character of the remnant in Psa. 1, we have the determination of Jehovah to set His King on the holy hill of Zion, the anointed Man, the Son of God as born in this world, who is further to ask for dominion over the heathen whom He will rule with a rod of iron, and break in pieces like a potter's vessel (comp. Rev. 2:26,27). But for the present He is rejected. The kings of the earth and the rulers take counsel together against the Lord and against His anointed (Christ or Messiah). Adonai, sitting in the heavens, shall laugh at them. In Acts 4:26,27, the Holy Spirit expressly applies this to Christ's rejection and death.
In Psa. 3-7 we have the consequent sorrows of the remnant, on which I do not enter. But in Psa. 8 Christ is celebrated in another character, when the Jews can celebrate Jehovah's name excellent in all the earth, and as having set His glory above the heavens, and as their Lord or Adon a state of things not yet accomplished in fact, while the second verse is used by the Lord in the passage first quoted from Luke, as the testimony enforced, so to speak, by God, when the Savior was here and rejected, quoting also Psa. 118, of which we may speak as specially referring to this future time of Christ's return in power. Now I quote this to show that it is identified with man's being set over the works of God's hands. The Son of man, which the Lord constantly applies to Himself, coming specifically into view, a passage as applied to Him in its full import as inheriting all God's purposes as to man; used as defining the whole position in the results of divine administration more than once by the apostle Paul, as (Eph. 1:22) " And hath put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, which is His body " (comp. Col. 1:15-18); and again, in 1 Cor. 15:20-28, when all things are to be put under the feet of the risen (the second) Nan; except Him who put all things under Him. Here the whole scheme is unfolded; and again in Heb. 2 we are told that we see not as yet all things put under Him; but we see Jesus made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor. Nothing can be more precise to both the divine purpose and the measure of its accomplishment, than these passages.
The general fact is again brought before us, in quite another part of Scripture, in contrast with the earthly power of evil, in Daniel, seventh chapter. The chapter is divided by the expression " I saw in the night visions," 1-6, 7-12, to give the last beast, the principal one, more particularly, then 13, 14; from 15 to the end, inquiry and explanation, bringing in both the saints killed by the beast (and who, as is confirmed in Rev. 20, go into heaven) and Israel. I quote 13: "I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought Him near before Him," etc. This was when the thrones had been set for judgment. But afterward we find it was the Ancient of days who came when judgment was given (22) to the saints of the most high (the high places). So in Psa. 80, where Israel is crying out (not merely Jews) for their final deliverance, it is (17):"Let thy hand be upon the man of thy right hand, upon the Son of man whom Thou madest strong for Thyself." Thus the rejected Messiah, cut off, and who took nothing of the kingdom and glory, but cut off Him- se' f, the one who is the head over all things as Son of man according to the purpose of God.
This truth runs through the Gospels where no passage perhaps men"-here, in the nature and principle of His place, the Son of man.
Hence, when Christ was born, we find the angels celebrating his birth with Glory to God in the highest, on earth peace (not good will towards, but) good pleasure in men. He did not, as it is written, take up angels, but He took up-here narrowing it to grace and promise-the seed of Abraham, consequently associating it at once with Old Testament history. So we read in 2 Tim. 1:9: "Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, but is now made manifest by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ." So Tit.: " In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the worlds, but bath in due times manifested," etc. So 1 Cor. 2 "We speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, which. God ordained before the world for our glory." Now, till the rejection of Christ, these counsels of God in grace were not brought out to light as we see stated here, because the first man, and the possibility of his recovery, were being tried, though God, who knew what man was, was quickening souls from the beginning. Still we shall find full traces of all that concerns both the history of Christ, His rejection and future glories, or, as Peter expresses it, the sufferings of Christ, and the glories that should follow.
Let us take Messiah and Son of man, and the connection of their titles with Israel and the future glory of Christ. In Psa. 1 we have the remnant carefully distinguished from the ungodly, as Isaiah says: "Except Jehovah of hosts had left us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and like unto Gomorrah." But it is well to note, before we proceed to the chain of texts, that the Lord expressly tells us that this peace on earth was not to be accomplished by His first coming. " Suppose ye," He says, "that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay, but rather division: for, from henceforth, there
shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three " (Luke 12:51,52), practically a quotation from Mic. 7, where it is presented as the extreme of evil, evil drawn out in its worst forms in fact, by the perfect manifestation of good, of God Himself, shown in the death of Christ, and in hatred of those faithful to Him; for all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.
But as to Christ, He was to suffer and make atonement, sit not yet on His own throne, but on the Father's, at the right hand of God-expecting till His enemies were made His footstool; where He is now, the work perfectly accomplished which perfectly glorifies God, gives us a perfect conscience, destroys in title the whole power of Satan, is the sure foundation of eternal blessedness, the new heavens and the new earth: but, through which, we are called to take up our cross and suffer, who are to have the heavenly inheritance, and be like Him in glory, but must wait here with Him now, and while He waits, having the sympathy of our great High Priest, or, with Him, as to our spirits if called away before He comes. If He is crucified, we must suffer, not reign, till He takes to Him His great power and reigns: till then Satan is still the god and prince of this world, not cast down from the heavens.
From the beginning man, under his influence, has spoiled what God set up good-spoiled it the first thing: so the first man himself, so Noah got drunk, so the golden calf was made, so Nadab and Abihu offered strange fire, and the holiest was closed to Aaron save one special day; so through Solomon's sin the kingdom was divided; and, under Nebuchadnezzar, the Gentile power became a beast; so always, and apostasy set in before the apostle's eyes were closed.
But Satan will be cast down from heaven (Rev. 12), where he is now the accuser of the brethren. Then we shall haw, as Luke tells us, peace in heaven, glory in the highest; and " Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord" here is quoted. Nathanael owns Jesus to be the Christ according to Psa. 2 " Thou art the Son of God, the King of Israel." " Thou shalt see greater things than these," says the Lord. "Henceforth thou shalt see the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of man." He takes His place as Son of man in contrast with and beyond that of Psa. 2 In John's Gospel the Jews are treated as rejected and reprobate from the first chapter (1: 10, 11), a remnant, born again and believing, alone owned, because Jesus is God, and Him man never received, but was enmity against.
The three other Gospels present Him as Messiah, Emmanuel, Jehovah, the Savior (Matt.); the prophet-servant (Mark); and Son of man in grace after the first two chapters, a lovely picture of the remnant in Israel (Luke). Hence we have genealogy, from Abraham and David in Matthew, up to Adam in Luke.
When the Jews are utterly rejected at the end of Matt. 12, so that He no longer seeks fruit in his vineyard and fig-tree (46-50), He goes out to sow, but He that sows the good seed is the Son of man; the kingdom in mystery, i.e. without a present king (13.), the church (16.), the kingdom in glory (17.), are substituted for Israel under the Old Covenant, but in 16: 20 they are charged to tell no man that He was the Christ: The Son of man (17: 12) must suffer of them; more immediately contrasted, in Luke 9., which ends the chronological history (see verse 21), when Peter, taught of God, owns Him to be the Christ, " He straitly charged them and commanded them to tell no man that thing, saying, The. Son of Man must suffer... but be raised the third day;" and then He shows them the glory of the coming kingdom; the Son of man would come in His own glory, in the Father's, and of the holy angels, as Son of Man, Son of the Father, and as Jehovah. But (Matt. 17:9) this belonged to another scene, and man as a new creation. They were not to tell it till He was risen again from among the dead, and (Luke 9:36) they kept it close, withal wondering what rising from among the dead should mean (Mark 9:10), and from that day began to press upon them that the Son of man must suffer (Matt. 16:21, Mark 9:31, Luke 9:44). In John we have this under another form, namely that of a full testimony from God, when Israel had rejected Him, as Son of God, Son of David, and Son of man. The first is raising Lazarus (11: 4). " This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, and that the Son of God should be glorified thereby." He is the resurrection and the life.
Then (12: 13) they meet Him, according to Psa. 118, crying, " Hosanna I (save now, I beseech thee) blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord." Then the Greeks (Ελληνςς) coming up, the wider scene of Gentiles, the Lord says: "The hour is come that the Son of man should be glorified. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone; but if it die, it bringeth forth lunch fruit;" and (32), "I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me." So in His rejection, abjured by the High Priest, He owns He is the One spoken of in Psa. 2, the Christ, the Son of God, but adds: "Nevertheless, I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of Man sitting on the right hand of power and coming in the clouds of heaven." Thus that which dispensation ally set aside the Jews under the Old Covenant, and ended their title under the promises, brought out the far deeper truths of the enmity of man's heart against God in goodness-" They have both seen and hated both me and my Father "-but the accomplishment of that glorious work in which salvation was provided for Gentile as well as Jew, and God perfectly glorified in all that He is; the Christ rejected, Messiah cut off, as Daniel declared; but that as Son of man, not now taking the glory, but as suffering, yet vindicated of God as such; the whole truth of Psa. 2 and 8., Adam the image of Him that was to come (Dan. 9, Dan. 7) brought into light and accomplishment, and this not in quoted passages, but in realizing facts: and then, when the Holy Ghost was given, the passages applied and explained, as in Acts 4 and Eph. 1, 1 Cor. 15, Heb. 2, with no appearance of putting together or arrangement by those who uttered these things, but showing one mind and thought and plan behind it all, the word and counsel of God. I might multiply passages as to the use of Son of man, but I have only quoted what brought the bearing of Psa. 2 and 8. together. But the death of Christ closed the earthly history of Scripture, till the Son of Man shall come in His glory. Hence Stephen, summing up that history, from Abraham, when the promises began, shows the law broken, the prophets killed, the Just One betrayed and murdered, and the Holy Ghost resisted; and then sees the Son of man standing at the right hand of God. He had taken His heavenly place, though not yet set down. Now He sits at God's right hand till His enemies are made His footstool, having by one offering perfected forever (εἰς2 τὸ διηνεκές) them that are sanctified.
It was the time of the church, His body, and the habitation of God through the Spirit. Hence the Son of man is no longer spoken of save as giving Him His place on high (Heb. 2:6). But as soon as I come to the Revelation, what Christ had declared before the high priest, partly as seen by Stephen and taught in Heb. 2, the accomplishment of Psa. 110 is, as to the latter part, brought out prophetically in 14., coming as Judge for the ripe harvest of earth and the vintage of God's wrath (14-20). We find Him judging the church as responsible on earth in chap. 1. But from Acts 7 to Revelation He is never spoken of as Son of man, save that Psa. 8 itself is quoted (Heb. 2), to show where we are in this history. Even then He is not called so.
I may briefly refer to some other points where this unity of mind is developed. The three great feasts of Israel, ordinances which pointed to the great principles and power of the gathering of God's people. There were other feasts: the Sabbath, a sign of the covenant Made with them, but also that His people are in due time to enter into God's rest; here that of the first creation, for us of the new creation, as risen: the new moon- a sign, I doubt not, of the restoration of Israel, as the tenth day of the seventh month was of their future mourning, and entering into the delivering power of the atonement; but on these I do not here enter. At the three other feasts, Passover (with unleavened bread), Pentecost, and Tabernacles, all Israel was to go up to the place where God had put His name. Full of interest as they are in themselves, I must now confine myself to them, as forming a chain of unity in the history.
PASSOVER has an unquestionably historical character. It was " a night much to be remembered," when, protected by the blood from judgment, they ate their unleavened bread in haste, preparing to depart out of Egypt. There is no evidence that I am aware of that they kept it after Sinai (Num. 9) till they were in Canaan. Those born in the wilderness were not fitted to do so, being uncircumcised until across Jordan; when, under Joshua, they were, they did so (a very instructive figure, but a little beyond my purpose now). I only add, it is only when dead and risen with Christ we are circumcised, knowing what it is, and "the reproach of Egypt rolled away." Patience and proving in the wilderness does not belong to this. Hezekiah kept it, and Josiah kept it, as it had not been kept for long years. This criminal neglect of Israel is constantly used as an evidence by the Germans that the law was not given.
It was clearly established, in commemoration of God's sparing the people when judging Egypt and Pharaoh at the time of their deliverance from the bondage they were in. So it was ordained to be kept, and, as far as kept, was so. In Deut. 16 it will be found to have a peculiar character; for there the three great feasts are spoken of in connection with the state of soul under the effect of that which they figure. In the Passover, the unleavened bread, type of holiness and the absence of sin, is the bread of affliction; and they were to turn to Him in the morning and go to their tents, though the feast lasted seven days. There is no thought of common joy, as in Pentecost and Tabernacles, though in these in different measure. When in presence of judgment, though spared, holiness is bread of affliction, the spirit of repentance is the form of purity, and it is necessarily solemn and individual. But the great idea of security from God's judgment was there in the blood of the paschal lamb afterward, of course, only a memorial of it. Every Christian knows that Christ was the true Passover. The chief priests sought to hinder His being taken on the feast day; but God's purpose did not await their decision, and on the day of the Passover He was sacrificed as the true paschal Lamb, "the Lamb of God," to take away sin. Eating at table with His disciples, the Lord Himself so instructs us:
“With desire have I desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer; for I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof till it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God" (Luke 22:15,16): So that we have a clear instance of the intention of God in an institution formally established by Himself, by the hand of Moses, celebrating their escape from judgment in Egypt, yet definitely purposed to be indicative of a better and more lasting deliverance from the bondage of sin and Satan, and more directly from the judgment of God, by which we were bound down under its consequences. Christ, our passover, is sacrificed for us." When God sees that blood, He passes over, where faith has believed the word.
PENTECOST we know to have been connected with the coming of the Holy Spirit. It was the feast of first-fruits (not the first of the first-fruits, the wave-sheaf the morrow after the Sabbath, that is Christ risen on the first day of the week, but) when the harvest was reaped. Here, leaven was to be in the two cakes offered (for sin is always found in man) even if offered to God in the power of the Holy Ghost. At the same time a sin-offering was to be offered to meet this defect, not offered in the previous case of the wave-sheaf; but they could not be burned themselves as a sweet savor to Jehovah.. Then, as it was connected with the Holy Ghost, they were directed, in Deut. 16, to rejoice together in grace, and bring a free-will offering, according as Jehovah had helped them. All this abides in its true force-its purport accomplished at Pentecost, and its effect abiding to this day. Was it arranged of man for the future in its institution? or was its accomplished antitype, the Holy Ghost come down from heaven, arranged by man on that day? We have it in Leviticus: we have it, with other details, in Deuteronomy: one, Lev. 23, a history of the whole time from Egypt till the Lord comes again at the feast of Tabernacles; the other, Deut. 16, the characteristic detail, of which gives the moral 'import of the observance. If not arranged by man, it is a testimony to that purpose of God which makes the whole book one in the revelation of His mind.
We have yet the feast of TABERNACLES, but without any antitype at all, which makes it the more remarkable. This was for the land solely. They were to dwell in booths, a testimony that Israel had been wanderers; but that now the promises were fulfilled, and that they were at peace in their land, never, as Amos says, to be plucked up any more; and, as Ezekiel has it gathered back all of them. It was to be kept after the harvest and the vintage; in result, when ingathering and judgment were accomplished. We have seen in Rev. 14 the Son of Man reaping the harvest of the earth, and treading the wine-press of the wrath of God. In this character He comes, chapter 19. In this character He is prophesied of, Isa. 63, when He comes in dyed garments from Bozrah, when the day of vengeance is in His heart and He treads the peoples in His anger. Compare Isa. 34; 26: 9, and Zeph. 3:8: and in each case the promises to Israel following.
How could the Lord keep this feast? He could not. He will appear and show Himself plainly enough to the world when He executes judgment on the quick, and so we find it in John 7, "If Thou do these things," said His unbelieving brethren, " show Thyself to the world." Then Jesus said unto them, "My time is not yet come, but your time is always ready. Go ye up unto this feast. I go not up unto this feast, for My time is not yet full come."
But, then, there was another thing in this feast, an eighth day, a specially solemn day; it reached beyond the seven full days of this world's week to the first day of another which began afresh. On that day, " that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto Me and drink. He that believeth on Me (as the Scripture said) out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. But this spake He of the Spirit which they that believe on Him should receive, for the Spirit was not yet [given] because Jesus was not yet glorified" (John 7). He could not associate Himself with Israel at this feast, but He could tell them on that special day, which went beyond the order of this world, that the Holy Ghost would be given consequent on His taking a heavenly and glorious place as man, with which that Holy Spirit associates us. With the rest of Israel on earth comes in, what is yet a hope for us too, association with Christ in heavenly glory, as shown in its manifestation in the kingdom on the mount of transfiguration.
of which the Holy Ghost is given to us as earnest while Christ is entered as a forerunner, expecting till His enemies shall be made His footstool. Then He shall have all things gathered together in one in heaven and on earth, and then shall be fulfilled in Israel, and far better for us, the declaration of Deut. 16:14: "And thou shalt rejoice.... because Jehovah thy God shall bless thee in all thine increase, and in all the work of thine hands; therefore thou shalt surely rejoice." It was a feast hardly kept, and no wonder, in all their history; in Solomon's dedication, lost in the general joy, so to speak, and observed in Nehemiah's time (chap. 8: 14), when they had learned, though sore smitten, to sing again David's song: " His mercy endureth forever." Is all this without a purpose or an order, in Leviticus, Deuteronomy, and in the Lord's remarkable conduct and words in John? while all the testimony of the Lord's judgments, and of the rest of heart, far too numerous to quote here, confirm the truth of it, and lead, as it will, to the full singing of that lovely word so repeated in the end of the Psalms, חםְדּו לְשלָם, "His mercy endureth forever:" while we have better things in glory with Him where He is gone; yet all things to be gathered into one under Him "for the administration of the fullness of time " (Eph. 1:10).
The SACRIFICES and other TYPES of the Old Testament connect the whole Bible from Abel to Christ evidently. Moses made the tabernacle after the pattern shown him in the Mount. There was therefore a purpose and intention in it. Christ has passed through the heavens, as Aaron entered into the most holy place. The history is taken up, not only in the Hebrews where the whole is gone into, but in
2 Cor. 3 And, as to Hebrews, it is not a partisan confirming Jewish ceremonial; but while treating it as of God, putting it wholly aside, and contrasting it with Christianity, the heavenly thing. The whole system is judged; "a shadow, indeed, of good things to come," and yet fully recognized; and, observe, not the temple which they had before their eyes, and which men would have thought of (this is never alluded to in Hebrews), but the tabernacle in the wilderness; for there the Christian is, though with a heavenly calling. It had a full moral and spiritual signification for us; yet was all contrast, a veil that closed the way to the sanctuary, not a rent one which opened the way in; a priest sitting down because all His sacrifice work was finished, not standing because it never was accomplished.
The whole history, I may say, of the wilderness is recorded in 1 Cor. 10, and applied to Christianity.
We have the ark in Joshua; under Eli; and David; and the history of Aaron's rod, and the manna confirmed in Solomon's temple, and that by an allusion, as to a well-known thing, the strongest confirmation possible; though having a moral force that the means of journeying were gone when the rest was come, 2 Chron. 5:10. The temple order, substituted by David and Solomon for the tabernacle, is found, though slighted, and the temple defiled, all through the Kings. Now, though fifteen centuries separated the establishment of the two systems, the first has far more sense and import now to them that understand, than they had then. They were "shadows of goods things to come," but "the body is of Christ," Col. 2:17. This applies to every part of the ordering of the tabernacle, where though priests could go and others could not, yet in contrast, as I have said; for the veil is rent, and the holy and holy of holies have, so to speak, become one. What the altar, what the laver meant, details alluded to, I doubt not, in John 13, has its full force now. The mind which gave Moses the pattern in the mount thought of Christianity in giving it, and Christianity, while setting the shadows aside, more than fulfilled their import.
With THE HISTORY, if less obvious, it was equally the case, "All these things happened unto them for ensamples (-61roi), and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the
world are come " (1 Cor. 10:11). Hence we find them knit, as they are found in the Pentateuch, with the constant instructions of the new, and the aptness seen by every intelligent Christian; indeed the whole history acquires its value from its present application to everyday life, with the utmost and most instructive exactness. Historically the accounts of the Pentateuch are referred to and used for the judgment and instruction of Israel, as all the dates at which the Psalms may have been written, as 43., 14., 78., 99., 105., 106., 81. So the history of Judges in Psa. 83 The minuteness of the allusion in Psa. 80 shows more than any quotation how their minds were imbued with the history, God using it by His Spirit. God is appealed to as Shepherd of Israel, and leading Joseph like a flock to shine forth from between the cherubim; and, it is added, " Before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh." Why these tribes? They were the three next the ark at the rear of the tabernacle. The allusions are numberless. The spirit of the people from David to Babylon was filled-saturated-with the history in the Pentateuch, Samuel, and the Judges. The public neglect of Jehovah was great, and the judgments many; but their recollections and their desires lived in the history (see Judg. 6:13) we learn in the Old Testament, and what their prophets told them of the future. It was what made them know God.
If we turn to THE SACRIFICES we find the same neglect of God as in everything; but the full intention and unity of intention is evident, indeed plainly stated. We find it, from Abel onward, the only legitimate ground of access to God. " Without shedding of blood is no remission." " It is the blood that makes atonement for the soul." Sacrifices were offered to God, but for men; worship was connected with an altar, a deep and important principle notified to us in Cain and Abel, and in the patriarchs; nor in the tabernacle service could any strange fire be used to burn the incense, the neglect of which cost Nadab and
Abihu their Eves, and closed the entry of the holiest to Aaron save on the great day of atonement. Sin and death had come in; and death and the acknowledgment of sin must come in for man to approach God; and, when all was ordered of God, a clean and spotless victim must be offered. Such offerings occur, and mark the career of the godly (the Abrahams, whose earthly life was a tent, his divine life an altar), and repeated too often to call for any individual notice.
When all was ordained in connection with the tabernacle, and detail entered into, there was the burnt- offering which was on the ground of sin being there and atonement made (though not for particular transgressions), but was all burnt to God, an absolute sweet savor; the meat-offering, in which was no leaven (figure of sin), but all kneaded with oil.
and anointed with oil, and that in each minutest part; much frankincense, but all burnt to God, fully tested by holy judgment and only sweet savor. Then others feasted on what was slain, as did the offerer, priest and priests, and God too, while the same abiding law held good as to the blood and fat; and, lastly, when there had been actual sins, there were offerings for them confessed on the victim's head; and if the blood was carried into the sanctuary, the body burnt without the camp. If the efficacy of the atoning blood went into heaven, the victim was rejected outside the camp, an earthly religion (connection of a people with God upon earth) ceased, and was impossible. And especially on the great day of atonement the blood was carried into the holiest of all-God's own presence, according to what He was, not merely man's responsibility met by what was done on the altar of burnt-offering without. Besides this there was a sacrifice connected with their journey through the wilderness, for any uncleanness contracted there, unfitting any, otherwise entitled, to go up to the worship of God. This last was carried out, not by the shedding or sprinkling blood again, but by sprinkling with living water, into which the ashes of the burnt
heifer had been put. The blood had been sprinkled seven times where God met the people. All this had a purpose and a meaning. The Prophets and Psalms refer to it as, with more or less order, it was historically continued. The resting on the mere outward offering with an unbroken heart is judged; but, as in Isa. 53, there was One stricken for the transgression of God's people who made His soul an offering for sin, offered to God because sin was there; but a whole burnt-offering of a perfect sweet savor, God glorified in Him as the meat-offering, pure as man conceived of the Holy Ghost, anointed with the Holy Ghost, and all He did by the Spirit, all sweet odor of grace going up to and referring to God above, though priests may scent its sweetness, fully tested by the fire of God's judgment; no leaven was there, all was a sweet savor to God. We feed on this sacrifice as the peace-offering, though the life and its energies were all offered to God-feed on it indeed, as bread come down from heaven, and as a sacrifice in death, only that death is become sure life to us, and what was absolute ruin before is now redemption and life, and we drink the blood too; not only atonement made for our sins and guilt taken away in our believing, but God perfectly glorified in His nature and intrinsic righteousness, measured by what He is and not merely by what we owe, and all our sins gone where they never can be found again. Such was the special offering of the great day of atonement.
There is for the believer no more conscience of sins; he is perfected forever as to his conscience, while provision is made for restoring communion if we have defiled ourselves, the Holy. Ghost by the word restoring the self-judging soul in virtue of that which shows sins forever put away. He appeared once in the end of the world, to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself (complete in result in the new heavens and the new earth); and as it is appointed unto men once to die, and after that the judgment, so Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many. God is perfectly glorified in His nature through redemption, and the believer's sins gone forever, so that he has boldness to enter into the holiest. I cannot, of course, here enlarge on so wide a subject as the sacrifices, profoundly interesting as it may be. What I havethere to note is, that the word of God affords us, from Abel's time, a distinct line of thought, brought out in detail in the law of Moses, and prophetically applied to God's coming Servant in Isaiah, spoken of in the Psalms in words used by the Lord Himself on the cross; and then in the Gospels plainly declared "the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world," the Son of man come to give His life a ransom for many; and reasoned on, as every one knows, in the Epistles, showing Christ who died for our sins, according to the Scriptures, the just for the unjust, a Lamb without blemish and without spot. The lamb of Abel's faith is the Lamb in the midst of the throne, whose bride the heavenly Jerusalem is, Himself the light and glory of it-" a lamb as it had been slain."
The same divine thought runs through Scripture from the beginning of Genesis to the end of Revelation; the divine thought, prefigured in Abel, in the Exodus, and the sacrifice of the tabernacle, sung in holy strains in the Psalms, prophesied of by the prophets of God, even to the price He was to be sold for, and accomplished in the Word made flesh, and unfolded in the instructions of the Holy Ghost-God's precious Lamb, whose blood cleanses us from all sin. Was it a compiler of fragmentary documents in Ezra's time, or God, who has taught us all this, one immense moral truth from Abel to the consummation of all things, the foundation of the stability of the new heavens and the new earth which makes grace righteousness- the righteousness of God, and sets man at His right hand in glory, opening heaven to us now, and in time taking us there? It was God's thought, God's work of love, and God's revelation,
never lost sight of, as it never will be when even the kingdom shall be given up that God may be all and all.
These may suffice as illustrations of how divine thought runs as a continued stream of purpose through the Bible as a whole. I insist upon its being many books, by many authors, collected no man knows by whom (not the "learned Germans" more than I or Mr. Smith), but proved to be divinely inspired, individually and collectively, by the divine oneness which pervades their contents, and the more from their being many authors in remote ages. But I will now take two special parts of the great collection; for collection, whoever made it, every one admits it is, the Lord Himself setting His seal of acceptance on it as such-I mean the Gospels and Psalms-to show the divine mind in each.
The traditions of Mark's Gospel, composed at Rome from Peter's testimony as its source, and Luke more or less from Paul's, I attach no importance to. It is quite alike to me whether a secondhand tradition (not very early either) be true or false, if an apostolic source be true or not. The question is whether God is the source. If so, the human instrument is of no moment. Mark was intimate probably with Peter, and certainly Luke with Paul; but the latter could not have himself given testimony from personal knowledge to him, and Luke attributes it to another source. This is true, that the tone and import of Luke's Gospel falls in more with Paul's ministry of grace to all; but all the preaching in the Acts (and we have only sermons to Jews from Peter and Paul) is based on the commission in Luke, for they are distinct in each Gospel.
It is very doubtful if the Epistles of Jude and James are from apostles. This is not the real question. That the apostles had a special mission, whether the twelve or Paul, for these also are distinct, is sure to every Christian; but if God inspired others, their word was just as sure; and if an apostle spoke or
wrote or acted not by the inspiration of the Spirit, this was not the word of God. Those who believe in inspiration have, just as these historical critics, rested on traditional circumstances or proofs, or human evidence, strong indeed, I admit, for authenticity and the letter, but which leaves the real question, Are they inspired of God? untouched.
The proof of Scripture in this respect is in Scripture, in the power of the word wielded by the Holy Ghost. When in that power it reaches the heart and conscience, its character, its divine character, is known, not only in the particular point in which it reaches them, but as to the true power and character of that which has done so. The woman of Samaria does not say when thus reached, " What you say is true," but, " Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet." What He said came from God. His character and word were known to her. So it is with the Bible when a man is taught of God. It is recognized as His word, as Christ was recognized by those whose eyes were opened to see what was divine. Human testimony may prove the folly of human doubt, but no more, and so be useful; but divine operation alone gives divine faith. " He hath opened mine eyes." When men believed only through proofs to man, by miracles, Jesus did not commit Himself to them; He knew what was in man. It was man's judgment about Him, very justly formed, but only man's judgment, no revelation of the Son of God to the soul: this is by the word through the operation of God; and then a man is born of God and sees. But I must pursue my inquiry.
As to the Gospels then, they carry their own testimony with them. Men may make Harmonies or seek to prove discrepancies, or give us Eusebius' account of traditions, or, if we are to believe Eusebius, the foolish old man Papias' account of his pleasure in hearing legends of what Christ said-a good pious old man, I doubt not. One has only to read the Apocryphal Gospels to see what they are worth, the
utter nonsense that is in them. But each Gospel bears its distinct character, proving itself and completing the others.
For while each can give us enough to show what the blessed Lord's life was, yet the account would not be complete according to divine thought without all. First, there is a characteristic difference between John's and the Synoptical Gospels. They present Christ to be received as Son of David, Son of man, though of course the Christ and the prophet-servant, and in all He is rejected. In John, being God and the Son manifested in the world, the real ground of His rejection, we read in the first chapter that the world knew Him not, and His own received Him not, and they, the Jews, are treated as reprobate all through, and He is always come into the world, and sovereign and quickening grace alone leads to His reception. And what He is in person, and the Holy Ghost's coming, are fully treated of.
But let us see briefly these characteristics, so as to show, in some measure, the divine completeness of the whole; and it is not pretended there was a clever compiler of the four here. I can only touch on a few leading heads.
In Matthew He comes as Messiah, Emmanuel, Jehovah, to His people, yet if Messiah, of course, as Son of David. Hence His genealogy is traced to Abraham and David, the great vessels of the Jewish promise of the Seed. He was Emmanuel, Jesus, that is, Jah Hoshea, Jehovah the Savior, for He shall save His people from their sins. Born at Bethlehem according to prophecy, the anti-king seeks His destruction, and He flies to Egypt, called back out from thence to be the true Son of God here below. Then John the Baptist executes his mission. Both here and with the Magi, while the Jews are the immediate object, yet a remnant only is owned in Israel morally, judgment is at hand, and grace can make of stones children to Abraham, and in the Magi the Gentiles are owned but in connection with one born king of the Jews.
Then Christ takes His place among this remnant, and immediately heaven is opened, He is anointed with the Holy Ghost, and the Father owns Him as His Son. The whole Trinity is for the first time fully revealed, and man's place (for us in redemption), according to God's counsels, made good in Him when He takes His place amongst them, Son of God there. Owned such He goes up, led of the Spirit, to meet Satan; for us refuses, if Son, to leave obedience in His taken place of servant, and overcomes Satan for us in perfectly waiting on God's will to act, overcomes his wiles, and sends away the adversary, and then goes to Galilee to the poor of the flock, calls disciples, and all the history of His service in Matthew is given in verse 23 of chap. 4.
Then He describes the character of those who would have part in the kingdom without speaking of redemption. Israel was on the way with. God to judgment (comp. Luke 12:49-59), and if they did not agree would he cast into prison, and not come out till they had paid the last farthing. And there they are, to this day.
In 8. He is Jehovah, and the Gentiles are again noticed. In 11. we have the character of His ministry, which is forgiveness and power in grace (according to Psa. 103), and characterized by grace. In x. mission exclusively to Israel in His own time, then, to the end of 15; after He was gone from 16, and that to the end till the Son of man should be come. In 11. John the Baptist's ministry and His own are both rejected by Israel, and He takes the character of Son of God, unknown because of His person, and alone able to reveal the Father to the comfort of the heavy- laden, and as the obedient man showing the yoke they must bear to get rest. In 12. the Jews are formally judged, and He disclaims any relationship on earth except that produced by the word. In 13. He seeks fruit no more in His vineyard, but as Son of man carries out the seed which was to produce fruit; but the field is the world and the kingdom of heaven is described, that is, God's kingdom when the King is in heaven, taking the place of His presence on earth. He will come in judgment as Son of man, and the righteous shine forth as the sun in the Father's kingdom.
In 14. He still continues His ministry in grace, but Israel and man are judged in 15., and grace to the farthest from God according to Jewish dispensation vouchsafed to those who had no promise in His person. In 16. we have the church Christ builds (founded on the title " Son of the Living God," proved in resurrection) to replace Israel, as in 13. the kingdom in mystery, in 17. the kingdom in glory. The disciples are forbidden to say any more He is the Christ, for the Son of man must suffer. In 18., to the end of 20: 28, we find the principles, which were to guide the disciples and characterize their walk when He was gone- lowliness, His presence among them, forgiveness, judging the inward man of the heart instead of observing the outward law, and other great principles of conduct and service.
In all the Synoptics, the history of the last events, another chapter of the Lord's history, His death and not His life, begins with the blind man of Jericho. And He begins by again taking the character of Son of David, and presenting himself to Jerusalem as such. Then the Jews and their various sects come up one after another and are judged. The testimony of God in Judah till the Lord comes (24: 1-31), with exhortations to 44; the judgment of Christendom in 24: 45 to 25: 30, and 31 to the end the judgment of the Gentiles, to whom the message of the kingdom had been sent in those last days; in 26. 27., the last scenes, in which He is specially the victim here, led to the slaughter and dumb before His shearers, and every human comfort looked for in vain, the Christ the Son of God but henceforth Son of man in glory, the veil rent. Then His resurrection and joining the poor of the flock again in Galilee, but no ascension: the twelve being sent out to disciple and baptize the Gentiles, a commission from Jesus risen, of the accomplishment of which we find no history in Scripture. The mission to them is surrendered to Paul, as recorded, in Gal. 2
The perpetual quotation of and reference to the Old Testament Scriptures is evident to the most careless reader, with ἵνα, when it is the object of the passage cited, ὅπως when it is an accomplishment of it, τότε when it is only an instance of the thing. I have only noticed of course here what shows a perfect and systematic course of teaching, all based on the essential character of the Gospel. The events are not given in historical order in the life of the Lord, though generally following it, but are subjects treated of. The whole history of His life and ministry is in one verse, and then what characterized it,-the mind of God in it. The rationalist may search very imperfect legends how it originated and was put together, conjecture or reason on a Hebrew original or the contrary, and the Nazarene Gospel. The Christian taught of God sees with perfect certainty the character of the Lord as Messiah, Emmanuel, Jehovah, a Man amongst men, but Son of God, presented to Israel with all the principles He brought as such, and rejected by Israel to make way for deeper counsels and a better salvation: stating indeed a heavenly place for those rejected for His sake, but carrying on the testimony, not from heaven, but from resurrection.
The Gospel of Mark 1 need not dwell on. It is the ministry of Christ, and is more exactly in chronological order, the same as Luke when he is chronological, but not calling for special notice for the purpose for which I comment on the Gospels. The reader may notice that the Lord's life closes here too with Galilee, as far as the Lord's words go; 16: 9-20 giving a short summary of what is recorded in Luke and John.
I turn to Luke, but only for some brief remarks, with a view to my special object. It begins with a lovely picture of the godly, remnant in Judah, and the prophetic Spirit amongst them, hidden in the midst of the abounding iniquity of Israel; but where, as in the cave of Adullam, a godly priest, the true king, and the Spirit of prophecy are found. But the Jews are under the power of the Roman "beast," and events are dated by his reign. Then comes a genealogy, which traces Christ up to Adam, He is Son of man come in grace, not the heir of promises to Abraham and David.
At once, in chapter 4., He shows God's goodness extended to the Gentiles, so that they were going to kill Him. Then we have His power over demons and diseases,-cleansing the leper and forgiving sins on earth; He is come to the sick. His disciples could not fast then,-the bridegroom was there;-nor could new wine be put into old bottles, the truths of grace and the gift of the Spirit into Jewish ordinances. He is found (as constantly in Luke) praying as Son of man, and slighting their thoughts of the Sabbath; He was Lord of it as Son of Man: it was the sign of the covenant with Israel (Ezek. 20) He gives then the summary of blessings and woes, (the disciples are "ye poor,") but not the principles on which they would enter into the kingdom. There is more faith in a Gentile than in Israel; and then He raises the dead. The poor multitude and publicans justified God; the Pharisees rejected His counsel and are rejected. But wisdom is justified of all her children; and the child of wisdom is shown in the poor woman, a sinner in the city: not in the Pharisee who, with God in his house, decided, as rationalists do, that He, most clearly, could not be a prophet. But forgiveness, salvation, and peace are the portion of the poor woman, to whose
heart and conscience God had revealed Himself in Christ as light and love.
Then, in chap. 8., the sowing the word is spoken of; but we have not the mysteries of the kingdom. This Gospel is not dispensational; but the Lord rejects association, according to the flesh, with Israel. We have then an account of the expulsion of the legion of demons in Gadara, and, as often in Luke, moral details as to the man. He would go away out of his home in this world with Christ, but was sent back for a testimony. The world gets rid of Jesus; and, I have no doubt, the rushing of the herd of swine is a picture of Israel's conduct when He was gone; but this is a mere figure I leave to every one to judge of. He goes to heal Jairus' daughter, but has to raise the dead. Only whoever touches Him with faith, in the way as He then was, is healed.
After feeding the multitude He is transfigured; and in the Gospel of Luke only we have the talking of His decease, and the going into the cloud, the heavenly part of the kingdom, a very important element Their selfishness is detected in every form from the grossest to the most refined; and Christ is to be everything. This closes the orderly historical part of Luke. Christ's time was come for Him to be received up, and He steadfastly sets his face to go to Jerusalem. In the beginning of 9. He had given His last testimony to Israel, only there was no inquiry who was worthy; and then comes the kingdom in glory, and entering into where the Father was, the excellent glory, and the strict prohibition any more to say that He was the Christ. We have no going through the cities of Israel till the Son of man be come,-no prohibitory notice of Samaritans and Gentiles; we have the history morally, not dispensationally, given: here, too, He was praying when He was transfigured; no replacing the Messiah in Israel by the church founded on the title Son of God, but the heavenly and earthly glory when the Christ was rejected, and the cross, in
bearing which they were to follow Him. On this He insists, while the multitude wondered at His present power. He sends His messengers before His face on His way to Jerusalem, the parting testimony to Israel; but the disciples were to rejoice, not because devils were subject to them, but because their names were written in heaven. 'Grace is taught, independent of Judaism, in the man that fell among thieves. Then we have hearing His word, and prayer. He was the test of every soul The evil generation, as pictured in the return of the unclean spirit, is left out. Still the nation is judged morally.
The folly of the world in its desires is taught, and the fear of man to be conquered, and for disciples full trust in God exercised; while the heavenly portion of those who watch, and the rule in the return of Christ of those that serve, is beautifully brought out. The effect of His present coming in dividing nearest friends is told, and the application of being in the way with the adversary made clear. Judgment was on all the nation, the Sabbath is set aside in the work of grace, the kingdom very briefly announced in its external form, but in connection with entering in at the strait gate. He would often as Jehovah have gathered Jerusalem, but now her day was past. The Sabbath again yields to doing good, and the call to the great Supper and its result is spoken of: only the sick and the poor of the flock is added to what is in Matthew. We have then, what is in Luke only, grace in seeking and grace in receiving by the Father, God's joy in the salvation of a sinner thenceforth; what map, a steward out of place, is to do with his Master's goods in view of everlasting habitations; and the veil withdrawn from another world, putting the outward blessings in this, promised to Israel, in their own true place. This morally substitutes Christianity for Judaism.
After some moral principles, He is substituted for the temple and Judaism in the case of the healed Samaritan; the kingdom of God was there. Prayer is urged, but when the Son of man cane where would be faith? and self-judgment preferred to self-righteousness, and the heart searched instead of the commandments outwardly kept. There is none good but God. Salvation is only of Him. He approaches Jericho; the story of Zaccheus is added, full grace to a publican, but responsibility in service when He should be gone, and reward according to labor. Then in approaching Jerusalem on the ass, the remarkable expression, Peace in heaven. Till Satan should be cast out thence, no rest on earth could come. Jerusalem is wept over in grace.
In the prophecy to His disciples (chap. 21.) we have no abomination of desolation, but the siege of Jerusalem by Titus not mentioned in Matthew. The true secret of Peter's fall brought out, and the entire change in Christ's position now, as being there, not as Emmanuel, King in Israel as He had been, but as a malefactor on the cross. In Gethsemane more deep human sorrow than in any Gospel; on the cross none. He is the perfect man: not here the victim before God, true as that ever remains. He went through the sorrow with His Father; and there was calmness itself when the sorrow was actually there. We have the account of the converted thief, and the assurance of a blessed intermediate state before He came into His (Christ's) kingdom: a most instructive and important history. I should have added that in instituting the Lord's Supper He does not speak of eating it new in the kingdom, but of the present thing, its being fulfilled in the kingdom of God. We have the lovely history of the disciples' journey to Emmaus; and, passing rapidly over the circumstance of the resurrection, no going to Galilee, but going out to Bethany; the ascension related, and their blessing in connection with His going to heaven. It is He himself, the same Jesus who is risen: He eats to show it: opens their understandings to understand the Scriptures: repentance and remission of sins to be preached in His name; but they were to wait for power at Jerusalem for the promise of the Father-that is, the coming of the Holy Ghost. It is on this commission, as I have said, that the preaching of the Gospel took place, as related in Scripture.
The whole Gospel gives us the moral change, and introduces the present and heavenly state of things, not dealing with dispensations, though of course with the setting aside of Judaism. It is the Son of man, and in divine grace. While Luke is especially characteristic, it is less easy to reproduce its character in a summary, because it is many minute traits which form that character: grace in the Son of man. Still the introductory chapters, the place and scope of the genealogy, the introduction of the parables in 14, 15, 16. the introduction of going into the cloud in the transfiguration, the ascension, the thief on the cross, the woman that was a sinner, the frequent praying of Christ, the introduction of Gentiles, all marked grace that reached out beyond promises to Israel, and the Son of man in whom that grace came.
The Gospel of John, on the contrary, gives very broad lines of truth as to the person of Christ and the coming of the Holy Ghost. Its character is totally distinct from the other three gospels. It is not a history to display what Christ was here, His is rejection and death, but a statement of all that He was in Himself The. Jews are all set aside, and indeed man, in starting; but all that Christ is, save His relative characters, is found already in the first chapter: in the third, what was revealed and needed for Israel and man to have part in the earthly and heavenly blessings. We have only to follow the contents of the Gospel to see its bearing. The sovereign operation of needed grace is found also from the beginning. What was found by results and experience in the first three Gospels is taught as truth here.
The first chapter begins before Genesis, because it treats of what was, not of what was done. As to Christ, He is God, in nature a distinguishable person with God, not become so by incarnation, but With God in the beginning. He was, when all began. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men; but the light shone in darkness, that is, amongst men, but the darkness comprehended not. God, in patient love, sent a witness to draw men's attention to that light. Next, verse 14, He became flesh, ἐγένετο, became, not now ἦν, was He became flesh, was this amongst men as man, was a Son with His own Father, dwelt among men full of grace and truth. Christians have all received of His fullness, and grace for grace. Grace and truth came by Him, they were there, ἐγένετο. The law was given by Moses. Then His work: He is the Lamb of God, the taker-away of the sin (not sins) of the world, and the baptizer with the Holy Ghost; He was anointed and sealed with it Himself. Then, as John had witnessed to Him as Lamb of God, His disciples gathered round him. He is Son of God and King of Israel. But much more: henceforth the heavens would be seen opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of man. He is not the Christ for Israel in this chapter; nor Priest above; nor Head of the church. John does not own the Jews, nor has he indeed to do with the Church all is individual, not counsels, but God revealed in the Son declaring His Father; and eternal life come down to be imparted to man, the Word become flesh.
In the second chapter we have the result when the history of the gathered remnant closes, the joy of the marriage, the purifying water turned into wine, and the temple purged of all that profaned it. This closes the introductory part as to all that concerns Christ.
We have now what concerns men. But the incarnation is the introduction of what was before the beginning of all things, in the power of life in a Man, into the scene of the all things, to be eternal life indeed as from everlasting in His person; but a wholly new thing though a true Man amongst men-a new beginning. But the mere human conviction by evidence was nothing, and not to be trusted. Man must be born again (ἂνωθεν) wholly anew. Nicodemus ought to have known this as a teaches of Israel. The prophets (see Ezek. 36) showed it plainly that, even for Israel to enjoy the earthly promises, there must be a new birth; how much more to have part in the heavenly! which He would teach as coming thence, as no one else had to tell it, the Son of man, who was even then divinely in heaven. But the Son of man must be lifted up, that a people separated by faith should have a part in these heavenly things. The need was there on man's side, and the Son of man met it. The love of God was there on God's side, and the Son of God was given; but it is the world, not Israel. The condemnation now was that light was come into the world; and, man hated it, and did not come to it. In the rest of the chapter John the Baptist unfolds who he is, the testimony being closed by the evangelist himself with the Father's love to the Son, and His having put all things into His hand: he that believed on Him had everlasting life. Man, God in grace, Israel, the world, and the Son of God come in grace revealing the Father, bringing eternal life, grace and truth-all find their place here; what Christ is, and the truth as to man, the being born again, and the atonement on the cross.
This closes the introduction, the epoch being marked by John being not yet cast into prison; after which Christ began His public ministry. In the fourth chapter the Lord leaves Judaea, His country as come amongst the Jews, and we find grace with a Samaritan, prerogative mercy above Jewish relationship, and connected with His person and humiliation, but no understanding of it in man; and this produced by dealing with the conscience. Worship must be in spirit and in truth, for God is a spirit; but the Father, His name in grace, revealed in the Son, seeketh such, In ch, 5. we have the benefits under the law dependent on the power of the person who is to use them, and there is none; the disease to be cured has taken away the force to use the remedy: Christ as Son of God brings it with Him. The
Father raises the dead, and quickens them, so the Son quickens whom He will; and he who believes has eternal life: then man's responsibility as to it, life being come in His person, with the evidence of John Baptist, His own works, the Father, their own Scriptures: they would not come to Him to have it. In ch. 6. He is Son of man, owned prophet, refusing to be king; He ascends up for priestly service, and the disciples go away alone; He rejoins them, and they are immediately where they went. Our food, meanwhile, is Christ humbled, the bread from heaven, and His flesh and blood; but if this last, His death, be not fed on, there is not life; in such case their portion is resurrection in the last day, in a state man never was in, even innocent. In ch. 7. the Holy Ghost takes the place of Tabernacles, as we have seen, of which there is yet no antitype; in ch. 8. His word is rejected; in ch. 9. His work; in ch. 10. He will have His sheep at any rate out of Israel and the Gentiles too; in chs. 11. 12. we have the testimony rendered of God, as we have seen, to Christ when rejected as Son of God, Son of David, Son of man: but then He must die.
This closes His history, and He is now looked at as going to His Father-this from ch. 13. He must leave His disciples; but if He cannot stay with them, He must have them with Him gone now to God. For this He abides a servant, and washes their feet; for being washed (converted), that is done once for all. Their walk remains to be seen to. Further, God is perfectly glorified by Him in His death, so man goes into God's glory. In ch. 14. He went to prepare a place for them above, and will come back and receive them. They knew where He was going, for He was going to the Father, and they had seen the Father in Him, and so knew the way too. Further, when the Comforter was come, they would know not only that He was in the Father, but that they were in. Him and He in them. In ch. 15, Israel was not the true vine, though a vine brought out of Egypt. He was so: and they the branches and this on earth. Then the work of the Comforter fully developed in ch. 16.: sent by the Father in 14. in His name: by Him, from the Father, as the glorified Man in ch. 15., 16. In eh. 17. speaking to His Father-wondrous grace that we should be admitted to hear Him-He puts the disciples (founding it on His work, and glorifying, and revelations of the Father in Himself) on the same ground as Himself with the Father and with the world.
Then we have Gethsemane and the cross ch. 20., His revelation of Himself to Mary Magdalene and to the disciples: and this whole period of Christian blessing characterized. The Jewish remnant, who loved Him, could not now have Him back in bodily presence, but they were now His brethren; He went to His Father and their Father, to His God and their God: He is in their midst, communicates life in resurrection in the power of the Holy Ghost, as God breathed into Adam, commits the administration of forgiveness of sins on earth to them. Thomas represents the remnant in the latter day. In ch. 21. we are in Galilee again with this remnant; and the service of Peter, who is blessedly restored through grace, and of John: one as the apostle of the circumcision to find his labor in Israel come to nothing as regards the nation, and he a martyr, as Christ; and John to linger over the condition of the church till He came. It is purposely given mysteriously, and in part refers to the last days. The net is the millennial haul, and does not break, as the gospel net did. (Of Paul's ministry we have nothing; it stands by itself, a dispensation committed to him.) We have no ascension in St. John's gospel. It will be remarked that, all through, it is the divine side and the purpose of God as to Christ, which is treated here; with the Holy Ghost who takes His place on earth.
I would still notice the distinction of the closing scene in the Gospels. In Matthew Christ is the victim, perfect in calmness and patience, with no ray to comfort Him, no heart to feel fob' Him; He is led as a lamb to the slaughter; man's wickedness frightfully brought out, but a perfect victim of propitiation, told out on the cross by the solemn words, "My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken Me?" In the midst of plans of the priests and the vacillation of Pilate God's purpose is carried out in the true passover: and Christ is, before both, condemned for His own testimony to the truth.
In Luke you have deeper human conflict in Gethsemane, though perfection in it: being in an agony, He prayed more earnestly. On the cross there is none: He had gone through it as man with His Father, and the perfect result is peacefulness on the cross. Also, here, as man, He commends His spirit to His Father.
In John we have the divine side-no sorrow in Gethsemane, none on the cross. In Gethsemane they go backward and fall to the ground, and He delivers up Himself, saying, " If ye seek Me, let these go their way." On the cross He puts His mother under John's care, and delivered up His own spirit when all was finished in the work He had to do. We have to learn in part, and the various parts separately, that we may know all. John was nearer Christ in His agony, but Matthew gives it, not John. Matthew saw the people go back and fall, but says nothing of it. The Holy Ghost gives by each what suits the whole tenor and subject of that Gospel. But our Baurs and other Germans can see nothing but a composition to make peace among Christian squabblers in the end of the second century. Can there be greater poverty, more total moral darkness? Mr. Smith, professing for some other reason to believe, debits out this threadbare infidelity, without a ray of light to lighten the darkness, or say it is not true; or he would persuade us that Christ sanctioned, as written by Moses, and as the word of God relative to Himself, what was not written by Moses at all,-an imposture in which he, forsooth, can see no harm, and would have us believe that the Lord and the apostles were all wrong; and Dr. Baur and himself right.
I have referred to the Psalms as another illustration of unity of purpose and mind as collected. It is well known there are five distinct books, each ending with ascription of praise to
Jehovah-1.-41.: 42.-72.: 73.-89.: 90.-106.: and thence to the end. Each book has its own object and character. The first two psalms, however, are an introduction, and give the key to the whole cl. In Psa. 1 there is a remnant distinguished from the ungodly of the nation. Psa. 2 gives the counsels of Jehovah to establish, in spite of rejection by Jews and Gentiles, Christ (the anointed) as King on His holy hill of Zion; also His Son, as born into the world; and, finally, to subdue the Gentiles with a rod of iron.
I would now mention a principle of order which helps us to understand the connection of many psalms. One or more psalms give the platform on which the thoughts and feelings of the following psalms are based.' But, first, as to the character of the five books. In the first the remnant is still in Jerusalem, and the name Jehovah is used throughout, though in two Elohim be introduced. And here we have more prophetic reference to Christ, though rejected.
In the second book the remnant is out of Jerusalem; but their state is pursued through rejection till the authority of the Son of David be established. This begins with Elohim; but after Ps. 45., when the King is brought in in power, we find Jehovah, and triumph. Blood-guiltiness is owned, the sufferings and sorrows of the people under oppression and hostile power are recounted: and Elohim is largely, sometimes exclusively, used in contrast with man powerful in wickedness. Still judgment is looked for in faith, and true repentance in Israel. But the remnant all through are cast out, though their praise is ready (65.) when restored. In 69. Christ associates Himself with Israel, bearing their sins, and carrying their sorrows in His heart, though rejected of them; and here Jehovah comes in again. It closes, as already said, in the Son of David being established in glory and power.
It will be found in individual psalms, the first verse or two giving the thesis, the rest what leads to it.
The third book goes "beyond the Jews, and takes in all Israel. They are to be received after the glory, and though faith does bring in Jehovah at 73: 28; and 78: 21; 80: 4; 81:10, still Elohim is the constant cry: they are not yet restored by the glory. Still we have this prophetically, and all the exercises of heart and faith and hope about it furnished to them by inspiration. Here too the old associations of Israel as a whole are far more fully before us. In 83. Jehovah comes fully in again, on the judgment against the last confederacy being executed, and is used even in the depth of their humiliation, their guilt under the old covenant (88.) In the next psalm mercies are recounted and Christ brought in (verse 19 called holy one wrongly. It is still Chesed, so the same as in the first verse generally; in verse 18 Kodesh,) That is, Jehovah. This closes the book.
The fourth book is the bringing in the first-begotten into the world. Jehovah has been ever Israel's dwelling-place. Of 91. I have spoken where Jehovah is identified with the Most High, in the accomplishment of the promises to Abraham. This is celebrated by faith in the next psalm. Then, with 93. as a preface, the introduction of Jehovah Messiah into the world, from the appeal of the suffering remnant who inquire if Jehovah is going to reign conjointly with the power of evil, verse 20, on to the calling up the Gentiles to worship at Jerusalem, where the presence and glory of Jehovah are fully established, in Psa. 100 In 101. we have the principles of the earthly kingdom; and 102. how Christ, who was cut off, could be there. He was Jehovah Eternal in nature (Atta Hu), and His years, too, as man should never fail (see Heb. 1) Psa. 103 celebrates Christ as Jehovah (comp. Matt. 9) in Israel; in Psa. 104 it is the God of creation who is celebrated; in 105. the God of Israel of old, but whose judgments are now in all the earth. In 106. Jehovah's faithfulness is looked to in spite of all their misdeeds.
The fifth book, from 107. to the end, is more general, but we have them gathered out of all lands. The great revelation that Messiah Melchisedek was to sit on Jehovah's right hand till His enemies were made His footstool, then His power would come out of Zion. It is fully celebrated "that Jehovah's mercy endures forever." The circumstances of deliverance are rehearsed in the Mahaloth, the law written (119.) in the heart of Israel who had gone astray like a sheep that was lost; and finally the great Hallelujah of now accomplished deliverance. Psa. 72 and 145. alone, as far as I remember, describe the millennial state itself: the first as to Christ; the second as to His association with the people. The 118. is the full description of the return of Israel's heart to Jehovah, recognizing His ways and their own fault, and is constantly quoted by the Lord in the Gospels, and brought out by the power of God in the last entry into Jerusalem: and it is quoted also in the Acts.
I return to note a few details based on the principle referred to at the outset. Psa. 1: 2. are the preface and key as I have said; then Psa. 3-7 the thoughts and feelings Christ's rejection has given rise to in the remnant, ending in His character as Son of man, Psa. 8 Of this I have spoken before. Psa. 9. 10. are the sorrows of the Jews and the delivering judgments of God; in 11.-17. their thoughts and feelings, Christ's resurrection, trust and righteousness being introduced, ending in 18., when Christ's sufferings are made the key to Israel's history, from Egypt to the establishment of the kingdom in power.
Psa. 19-22 are deeply interesting, creation testimony, the testimony of the law, of a Christ suffering from man exalted to glory and punishing all His enemies, of a Christ suffering indeed from man, but then crying to God and forsaken, yet perfect and making atonement; nothing but wider and wider blessing flowing from it to the remnant which becomes the church, literally accomplished in John 20, to all Israel, to the world, and those born in the millennium: " He hath done this."
Psa. 23 forms another starting-point: Jehovah the Shepherd who cares for His tried one; Psa. 24 Christ the Jehovah who enters in triumph into the gates of righteousness on earth. The exercises on this go to Psa. 39 Then we have the accomplishment of the counsels of God, undertaken by a suffering obedient Christ, the key to all; and then the blessing on him (41.) who understands the poor, as He said, Blessed are the poor in spirit, "ye poor;" and we can say, This poor man cried, and Jehovah heard him.
I need not go any farther to illustrate general principles, which is all I can attempt to do now. The divine sequence and connection of the Psalms is, I think, evident; yet they are confessedly isolated songs, composed at different times, even if mostly David's: a collection, but the mind of God shines through them as a collection; His purposes in Christ and in Israel, when Jehovah shall be owned as Most High in all the earth, a suffering remnant and a Messiah who has entered into their sorrows. Of course the Father's name is not and cannot be found in them, nor the Spirit of adoption. It is deeply interesting to see that, while His human sorrows can be viewed in Psa. 20, His atoning sufferings can be expressed only by His own mouth (22.)
I would say a few words on Petrine and Pauline teaching, as it is greatly dwelt on by these "learned Germans." It is folly, as they take it with their speculations, but most interesting, when rightly looked at. That the Jews had the strongest prejudices against the Gentiles is notorious, and that the Jewish Christians were not exempt from them is evident upon the face of the New Testament history. We possess in the Acts of the Apostles the case of Cornelius, and it is plainly in point both as regards Peter himself and those at Jerusalem. The affair between him and Paul (Galatians tells the same tale, and reveals, as do other passages, the effort to force circumcision on the Gentiles. The council in Acts 15 under God decided otherwise at Jerusalem itself, which was the important point. But, clear as may have been the Christian decision, prejudices remain behind decisions acquiesced in. " Certain came from James" marks this clearly. Only in Hebrews (13: 10-13) are they summoned to give up Judaism.
But there was much more than this. The writings of Paul contain a doctrine unknown to all other parts of Scripture-the church as the body of Christ. It is not mentioned by any other New Testament writer. The word is not used. It was a dispensation committed to him, besides the gospel, to complete the word of God. He was the wise master-builder who laid the foundation. It had been hidden from ages and generations: in proof of this, see Rom. 16:25; (read "prophetic Scriptures," not Scriptures of the prophets) Eph. 3:1 to 10; Col. 1:24-26.
John had nothing to do with this question: his ministry did not reach out to it. It was the revelation of eternal life, and the Father in the Son, and His becoming our life; but his ministry is always individual. If the children were to be gathered together in one by Christ's death, as well as the nation died for, it is individually as a family, not as the body of Christ. And in the mysterious end of his Gospel it passes from Peter closing his life and ministry as Christ did, and passes on to Christ's coming: in ministry fulfilled in the Apocalypse. In this last chapter of John, Paul does not come in at all. John speaks of Christ's and our going to heaven but four times, as far as I remember (6. 14. 16. and 17.) His ministry was the display of what was divine here below: hence its attractiveness.
Paul presents us in Christ before God: and this leads to union with Christ as His body. Peter's ministry, after presenting grace, redemption, and birth by the incorruptible seed of the word, and speaking of Christ's bearing our sins, very clearly dwells as his specialty on the government of God: in the first Epistle as to the saints, in the second as to the ungodly. I speak in all these cases of what characterizes them. But none ever touches on what constitutes Paul's special ministry. I may add, John still speaks of preachers who had gone out taking nothing of the Gentiles, of Christ dying, not for our sins only, but for the whole world. He puts our standing clearly in Christ (1 John 4:17); but it is still individual.
The Platonism of John is a fable; it is anti-Platonic in its revelations, and expressly so. The notion even of disputes after the destruction of Jerusalem seems to me unhistorical -save some Nazarenes and Ebionites in Palestine, soon sunk into insignificance-Judaism proper sunk into oblivion. The Alexandrian corruption of Christianity issuing in Arianism was later and connected with Neoplatonism. Justin Martyr (A.D. 140) was infected with it, and others of that school of his time. But it was another, thing. This is true that the full doctrine of redemption as taught by Paul never took root in the church: the church itself Judaized, and has remained in this state to this day. The return to Paul's teaching, and partially John's, is what is disturbing its slumbers at this day.
What was special in Paul's doctrine was that by the descent of the Holy Ghost believers, perfectly saved, were united in one body to Christ, Jews or Gentiles: and the fullness of redemption in a new creation was manifested, by the glorifying of Christ, as man, on high. Paul's conversion connected itself with this. He never knew Christ on earth-was a strict legal Jew. Christ was revealed to him in glory, and Christians spoken of by Christ as being Himself. He was delivered from the people and from the Gentiles, and sent to these last in connection with a glorified Christ, all disciples being one with Him: and the apostles at Jerusalem give up to him their mission to the Gentiles (Gal. 2) Of course this gave a special character to his mission, though the gospel, the basis of personal salvation, re mained the same. It was a dispensation committed to him, a mystery kept secret since the world began.
This is the reality of the difference between Petrine and Pauline teaching, which is sufficiently important. But this was too early lost, and the Pauline doctrine of redemption and the church merged in outward forms and organization, to have been a ground for any great controversy. None held Paul's doctrine. The Pope is the successor of Peter, not of Paul, though the last may be smuggled in to appropriate and hide him. John's teaching had nothing to do with the question. Indeed the Baur theory is pretty much given up. I speak of it to free the intrinsic importance of the additional truth taught by Paul: for it is no difference of gospel, but a very much larger revelation of the counsels of God, from the idle, and (they must forgive me) low, husky, speculations of those who know nothing of the real contents-husks half gone already; for rationalist speculations cannot be expected to last above twenty years.
The accusations of plagiarism I do not make much account of. But I do not see original research in the article "Bible." It is the current speculation of the day. But that must be borrowed somewhere. De Wette, Ewald, F. W. Newman (who borrowed it from the Germans), Hupfeld, all give it to us: and I now see it in Professor Kuenen, whom I have just read. It is a mere reproduction of what these teach, and, unless there was real personal research, it could hardly be anything else. " Opinionum commenta delet dies, naturae iudicia confirmat; " only for "naturae" we must substitute " aeternae veritatis."
You may consult Eichhorn's (a rationalist's) judgment:(1) None but ignorant and thoughtless doubters can suppose the Old Testament to have been forged by one deceiver; (2) They are not the forgery of many deceivers... But how could they forge in a way so entirely conformed to the progress of the human understanding; and was it possible in later times to create the language of. Moses? He goes through other
suppositions, and says, How could a whole nation be often deceived and at different periods, and by what degraded themselves? The whole passage, too long to quote here, may be read: Moses Stuart has translated it. The writers all quote, he says, or refer to what has been written before. Profane history refers to Moses as the lawgiver of Israel. It would be a serious difficulty, if anything be a difficulty to a theorist, to see how or why an elaborate system of tabernacle arrangement, professing to come by direct inspiration from God, should be recorded, when a totally different one was before their eyes. No one reading the Old Testament for himself but must see a clear and orderly succession of historical events, though much more-collected afterward, no doubt, into a volume-and that the effort to invalidate it supposes more absurdity than any other theory. It is bound together historically too closely. All is false if the whole be not substantially true as it stands, for it all hangs together and supposes itself all throughout. But faith depends on other workings in the soul than these external proofs. Doubts may be easily awakened, but did these reasoners ever present us with one certain solid truth?
As the matter has come publicly before all the world, I must say that Mr. S.'s defense is worse than his previous acts. To disseminate pure infidelity (for this it is), destroying the inspiration of the Bible as we have it, without a hint of anything else, and then say he believes it for other reasons, is too bad to be qualified by any term I could use. It results in making it no matter to falsify the real origin of the books; and in making Christ and the apostles put their sanction on such a course, or declare one to be the true author when he was not. And if it were true, where was the inspiration of the writer?
The question is not as to Professor Smith (of whom I know nothing but what is published); but, Are plain souls to have the word of God, what "proceeds out of the mouth of God," quoted by the Lord and His apostles as such, and Christianity communicated in words which the Holy Ghost taught, or the fancies of Astruc and Baur and Smith, with no real communication from God Himself? What is my soul to lean on?
Happily when the great conflict between man in the Second Adam and Satan took place, words which proceeded out of the mouth of God were sufficient for the Lord and for Satan, as they ever will be; and in the hour of His deep and atoning agony sufficed to express what was in His heart, that which no other heart could ever fathom or express. If there be a blessing in the world besides the Lord Himself in grace, it is to have God's word as He Himself has given it to us, like that Lord Himself, what is divine and heavenly but perfectly suited and adapted to man, in the heart of man: the Old Testament as a pipe which brings it, partially drunk at by those who conveyed it; in the New the heart itself, first the vessel drinking for its own thirst, and then the water flowing forth from the inmost man. " When it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb and called me by His grace to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the heathen." All of it is that word of God which works effectually in them that believe. "If that which was from the beginning abide in you, ye also shall abide in the Son and in the Father."

Note for Page 28

In order to chew the advantage of reading the foregoing along with the article on which it animadverts, we give a quotation from it on alleged " Parallel Narratives " and divergent laws, in the Pentateuch:-
" This view is supported by the fact, that even as it now stands the history sometimes gins more than one account of the same event, and that the Pentateuch often gives several laws on the same subject. Of the latter we have already had one example, but for our present argument the main point is not diversity of enactment, which may often be only apparent, but the existence within the Pentateuch of distinct groups of laws partly taking up the same topics. Thus the legislation of Ex. 20-23 is partly repeated in ch. 34., and on the passover and feast of unleavened bread we have at least six laws, which, if not really discordant, are at least so divergent in form and conception that they cannot be all from the same pen. (Ex. 12:1-28;13: 3-10, 23:15; 34:18; Lev. 23:5-14, Deut. 16) Of historical duplicates the most celebrated are the two-fold history of the creation and the flood, to which we must recur presently. The same kind of thing is found in the later books; for example, in the account of the way in which Saul became king, where it is scarcely possible to avoid the conclusion that 1 Sam. 11:1-11 should attach directly to
ch. 10: 16 (of. 10: 7).
" The extent to which the historical books are made up of parallel narratives, which, though they cover the same period, do not necessarily record the same events, was first clearly seen after Astruc (1753 A.D.) observed that the respective uses of Jehovah (Lone) and Elohim (God) as the name of the Deity afford a criterion by which two documents can be dissected out of the book of Genesis. That the way in which the two names are used can only be due to difference of authorship is now generally admitted, for the alternation corresponds with such important duplicates as the two accounts of creation, and is regularly accompanied through a great part of the book by unmistakeable peculiarities of language and thought, so that it is still possible to reconstruct at least the Elohim document with a completeness which makes its original independence and homogeneity matter of direct observation. The character of this narrative is annalistic, and where other material fails, blanks are supplied by genealogical lists. Great weight is laid on orderly development, and the name Jehovah is avoided in the history of the patriarchs in order to give proper contrast to the Mosaic period (of. Gen. 17:1; Ex. 6:3); and, accordingly, we find that the unmistakeable secondary marks of this author run through the whole Pentateuch and Joshua, though the exclusive use of Elohim ceases at Ex. 6 Of course the disappearance of this criterion makes it less easy to carry on an exact reconstruction of the later parts of the document; but on many points there can be no uncertainty, and it is clearly made out that the author has strong priestly tendencies, and devotes a very large proportion of his space to liturgical matters. The separation of this document may justly he called the point of departure of positive criticism of the sources of the Old Testament; and present controversy turns mainly on its relation to other parts of the Pentateuch. Of these the most important are-1. The Jehovistic narrative, which also begins with the creation, and treats the early history more in the spirit of prophetic theology and idealism, containing, for example, the narrative of the fall, and the parts of the history of Abraham which are most important for Old Testament theology. That this narrative is not a mere supplement to the other, but an independent whole, appears most plainly in the story of the flood, where two distinct accounts have certainly been interwoven by a third hand. 2, Many of the finest stories in Genesis, especially great part of the history of Joseph, agree with the Elohim document in the name of God, but are widely divergent in other respects. Since the researches of Hupfeld, a third author, belonging to northern Israel, and specially interested in the ancestors of the northern tribes, is generally postulated for these sections. His literary individuality is in truth sharply marked, though the limits of his contributions to the Pentateuch are obscure." [The reader, by turning back to p. 28, and reading on, will be able to decide for himself whether this be sound learning and valuable information, or rationalistic folly and utter incapacity to grasp the mind of the Spirit in Divine Revelation.-Ed.)

Christological Pantheism

THERE is a very grave question at issue now in the professing church of God, which branches out uniformly into many collateral points, all of which, though in different degrees, affect Christianity, that is, the true nature of Christianity itself. The root of the whole question, however, is, Where is the bond, the union, the living association between what is divine and men?
It takes the form of Popery or Romanism, Ritualism or Puseyism, so called, in the Episcopal body in England and in this country: the Stahl and Hengstenberg school in Lutheran Germany: and in what is called Mercersburg theology among the Dutch Reformed here.
The last is allied to a new school in Germany, propagating actively its views on the Person of Christ; but all, however various the shades of theology, are essentially the same. They all hold union to take place in the incarnation, to be with humanity, not consequent on redemption of believers with a glorified Christ; and, without in words denying it, they put redemption entirely in the shade. Redemption, in their view, is not really accomplished by the atonement but by the incarnation.
Their system of union developes itself in the life-giving power of sacraments; and in insisting on the importance and organic power and authority of the church: but meaning thereby the clergy. Where the German school has infected it, it introduces the organic and historic development of Christ's life in the world, and that in all arts and sciences, a kind of Christological pantheism: in all cases, the mystical power of the clergy, and organism of the life-giving power of the sacraments, which the clergy alone can introduce into them, is its practical character. It slights the written word and the operation of the Spirit of God; and, while speaking much of historical development, carefully avoids historical facts, as well as Scriptural statements, and the direct authority of the word of God over the soul as from God Himself. That is, private interpretation, the church, the creed, the Ecumenical Council, in result, the clergy, are to be trusted. The church has developed the imperfect elements of Scripture; and theology (which is of course in the hands of the doctors, that is, themselves) is alone full and formal truth.
It is remarkable how God is set aside in this system, and man, humanity, exalted and made everything of, even in Christ and His work, as far as His work is made of any account.
I shall notice some details, but I shall take up the root-question as concerning every one, for it is a question of what Christianity is,-what the truth is. The consequences are deplorable and demoralizing wherever it prevails; but, without denying that there are pious persons and real Christians ensnared by it, I affirm that, as a system, it is a denial of the truth of Christianity, of Christianity itself in its foundation and vital truths, as revealing what man is, and bringing him savingly to God. I add these last words because the error, save in the German school of the system, is not in the objective part of Christianity (or no one could be a Christian who adopted it), but in the application of its efficacious power, and the way in which God has dealt with man. They do not deny that those who oppose their system believe in the Trinity; in the incarnation; in the true humanity of the Lord; in the atonement; in the union of the two natures in one person, in the blessed Lord: as I myself adoringly recognize all this: and the true value of the two ordinances established by the Lord, Baptism and the
Lord's Supper-both, (and especially the latter as a continuous thing in the Christian's life), precious to his soul. I may add the exercise of ministry as given and appointed by Christ. These are not the questions at issue; at least I have nothing now to do with those who call them in question. For me, as to all the first truths, there is no Christianity without them, nor orderly Christianity without the latter. The question is, Where is the point of contact between God and man, these things being true?
But I go farther in what may be considered agreement with the school of error. I do not deny, but assert and affirm strongly, that the Lord established a church, that is, an assembly on earth; which, in one point of view, is His body, formed by the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; and which, in another character, is the habitation of God on earth by the Spirit (not the clergy; they are in no sense the church), this, (and the word means nothing else,) is the assembly. But, though individual relationship with God is always put in the first place by the word of God (relationship with the Father, in grace and Christ, the First-born among many brethren, and in responsibility conscience and faith are uniformly individual); yet God did establish an assembly on earth, designated as " the body of Christ," and as "the habitation of God by the Spirit." Further, the Lord instituted two great ordinances in connection with it -Baptism and the Supper of the Lord. He established also a ministry in gifts given by Himself from on high-evangelists, pastors, and teachers, as He founded it by apostles and prophets, besides its being compacted by that which every joint supplies, so that it should, in the edification of itself, increase with the increase of God. All this is plainly stated in the word of God itself. No history is needed to give it authority or validity. The particular views of Rome, of Dr. Pusey, or of Dr. Nevin, about these things, are another question. They are not inspired; the word of God is.
But I go farther still. The person of the blessed Lord is the center of all Christian affections and all Christian truth for the believer (and God has given us eternal life in Him-" He that hath the Son hath life"); as, in God's time, all things will be headed up in Him in heaven and in earth. This is supremely dear to the believer's heart. But how and where are men brought into living association with Him? All those to whom I refer say, in the incarnation and the sacraments. That life is and was in His person is most true. His person is the foundation of everything; but where are we brought into association with Him? The formulary among the Episcopalian Ritualists was, the sacraments are a continuation or extension of the incarnation. German, and American theology borrowed from the Germans, has added a principle of historical development before as well as after the incarnation, which the soberer Episcopalians have not adopted, as far as I am aware, but confine themselves to the continuation of the incarnation of the Son of God by the sacraments in the Church, and have not followed the reveries of the Germans; but the doctrine, as far as the truth I am occupied with is concerned, is the same.
The atonement loses all its importance as a redeeming work; at-one-ment, as Irving said, and they say, was in the Word being made flesh and receiving 'humanity in His own person. Our connection with God is restored by incarnation. Many grave errors flow from this as to justification and the like; but I confine myself to the root of the matter. Thus it is stated in this country:
"The Son of God.... assumed humanity and became the universal man, standing related to the race as redeemed in Him, as the first Adam stood related to the race as fallen in Him. The humanity of the one is as broad, as universal, and comprehensive, as the humanity of the other." " The very assumption
of that nature, in its sinless perfection, was itself the redemption of humanity. In Him humanity stands redeemed already, as the source and fountain of the new race which proceeds from Him." "The church becomes, accordingly, an object of faith, inasmuch as it is a continuation of the mystery of the incarnation." " The sacrament of baptism is the divinely instituted means by which, ordinarily, the life-communication takes place."
How far this goes in the hands of the followers of the Germans, and how it lowers redemption to what is human, may be seen in what follows:-" He, taking upon Himself our nature, not simply as an individual, to stand forth as one in the teeming race of Adam... but grasping the very foundation of our human existence, appropriates it to Himself as the generic force and life of our race; not a man, but the man. The second Adam, like unto the first, as the bearer of the totality of our humanity, comprehending in His person the whole of our human life." Now that He was " the last (not second) Adam" is all right, and that He took all that constitutes a man is all true, but this means a vast deal more. " For man is man, in the proper sense of the term, only as his life reveals itself in the outward forms of the institutions and relations in which it becomes actual in the world. The family, the state, learning in all its departments, the arts, the sciences, and all monuments besides of the activity of the human soul, stand not apart from, but are truly comprehended in, the constitution of our human life. These departments, if we may so call them, and all others besides, comprehended thus in the wonderful constitution of our humanity, must come at last to a vital union with the divine. Failure in this is failure equally deep and disastrous in the purpose of its being; it is death. But to attain to this is to attain to life and immortality! It was in this comprehensive sense that the Logos apprehended our nature, and took it into union with His divinity. These are the all things on earth' which
the divine will would gather up in Christ, even in Him, of which St. Paul speaks."
I give this long quotation to show how entirely man, as in and for this world, is in the mind of those degraded, for such it is, by this system. Not a trace of spiritual blessing in heavenly places in Christ, to say nothing of God Himself, communion with the Father and the Son. It is bringing Christ and the effect of His incarnation to the sphere of the mere natural man; indeed this is stated in terms. Again:
" Moreover, we must bear in mind that the humanity of Christ is, and must necessarily be, co-extensive with Adam's. Its remedial powers must be commensurate with the ruins of the fall, and reveal themselves wherever these effects are to be found. We look, therefore, for their regenerating and sanctifying potencies in every department of human life. The family, the state, our social relations in all their phases, art, science, learning, and all the outward revelations of human powers, are gathered up in this supernatural constitution," etc. " There all things in earth were gathered up and completed in the person of Christ, and the mission of the church on earth is to carry forward this germinal realization to an actual development in the world." Christ come in the flesh in this world, the incarnation prolonged (to speak with them) in the church, has its object in this world to take up human development in what are man's natural faculties. This is " the meaning and design of the incarnation of our Lord, and the constitution and powers of His holy body, the church." Of a citizenship in heaven, or affections on things above, not on things on the earth;-not a trace, save the denial of it. I add another short quotation to show it is systematic teaching, not merely individual opinion.
" The gospel is emphatically a world-saving power. It enters into the life of the world in an organic way... the scheme that says, There can be no real marriage of divine and human powers, of the life of Christ with the life of the race, in an abiding, historical, sacramental union, and continuing in the world in such a way as to carry forward society in a living process of life and growth in knowledge, and in faith, and in hope, and in charity, and in all that belongs to the existence of an emancipated and regenerated humanity'... is not only unreal and unhistorical, but it seems to run directly in the face of the plainest teachings of the word of God. This teaches that God is in Christ, and that Christ is the life of the world," etc. This writer, indeed, though making God create the world by His omnipotence, yet, as to its present form, whether accomplished in six days or six long geological periods, tells us that " all nature was made to rise, by an inherent law and tendency, from one gradation of development to another, under the molding generic power of the Almighty, until, finally, the whole culminated in the creation of man," which is little less than Darwinianism, and the progress from atomic cellules by " an inherent law and tendency."
But we must now see the introduction of this life in Christ. " Christological theology must be historical"... "His (Christ's) deepest, truest, and most real coming through the Old Testament is a coming in flesh and blood, a coming in and through generations, a coming in history; not in the events of history merely, but in that human life in which lay and from which operated the life of history. Yea, more, if we acknowledge, as all Christian historians do, that the incarnation is premeditated in heathenism, we are in like manner impelled to escape the subtle deception into which the mind so naturally falls, that this same prevening heathen history could have such a relation to the incarnation, if the eternal Logos had not such an aptitude for the human as that His own life should also be in some kind of underlying and underacting communion with the life of whose activities this heathen prophetic history is the creation and the result. If such be the relation of the life of the Logos to human life and history, previous to His actual incarnation, how infinitely deeper and more certain must be that relation after He has actually entered the human in a personal way-, and so joined His own divine-human life with the life and history of the race! Let us not deceive our own minds by separating history from life. Christian history, the history of Christianity, is the coming of Christ," etc. " Thus Christ came in humanity as its genuine principle of life, before He was actually incarnate in the fullness of time. But the mystery was not completed in this pervenient union of His with humanity."
Now, that the Son quickened souls, from Adam onwards, no Christian, I suppose, would deny. That in God we live, move, and have our being, so that we are, in a certain sense, His offspring, we know is Scriptural truth. But this is vastly more. It is in heathenism, as such, communion with divine life in Christ. The whole of this argument (and here the theologians run completely into the same channel both here and in Europe, with a large class of Germans whose system is infidel) confounds the wants and cravings of a being created for God, when they have Him not, with the answer that grace gives to those cravings in Christ: a very grave blunder.
But I must pursue my subject. To notice all their errors would be endless. It is the antiscriptural, antichristian character of the system, as a whole, which occupies me. " That His saving life exerts its redeeming and restoring power in humanity," and " that the person of the God-man, which is constituted by the real and true union of the divine and human, is the ultimate generic principle of redemption, the generic head of the new humanity." "He was the principle of that hereditary blessing which laid hold of human life generally."
Now, it is perfectly clear that in the counsels and wisdom of God before the worlds (Prov. 8), His delight (Christ's, as wisdom) was in the sons of men. His incarnation, as celebrated by angels, was the expression of good pleasure in men (Luke 2) They were the race of His predilection, and it was in Christ, the Word made flesh, that this was to be accomplished. But our theologians use this truth as a basis to their own speculations. Adam was only a candidate for the grace of life, to be enjoyed only in the event of his "predetermination admitting him into the wonderfully mysterious sacrament of the tree of life."
It is " not, and never was, designed by the Creator that man should have life in himself, but only as he stood in vital union with His own being as the absolute ground and source of all life. To be out of and separated from God is to be dead, to be in union with Him is to have life." Note well: this denies the immortality of the soul, and confounds permanent life with the divine life as possessed in Christ. Either Adam, as created, had not life in himself by creation, or he was united with God already, and fell when he was. Nay, the very devils could not exist. It is a theory involving ten thousand absurdities and heresies, at once confounding death and separation from God; spiritual death with dying as a creature, and life, as existence, with divine life in communion with God. As to union with God, though used by many Christians, save as regards the person of Christ it is a wholly false and unscriptural idea; it is always with Christ become a man, and risen from the dead, that we have union.
But I continue: "In what form the reunion of the human and divine would have taken place, had not sin entered into the world, it is not necessary for us here to inquire. It is enough to know that it would have taken place.... There was no miscalculation in the divine reckonings which the presence of sin for the first time revealed." However, sin came in; but "the union of the human and divine was originally involved in the plan of creation, as its ultimate design and end; in this union as it holds in the person of Jesus Christ, do we find the revelation of God's will touching this precise interest." "The appearance of sin as a. disturbing force, growing out of man's free self-determining power, was confronted immediately by this very resource for its effectual overthrow." It is not thus denied that Christ's going down to death, and meeting the penalty of the law, was needed; as He took humanity, He took it as it was, subject to its penalties, and consequently died on the cross. But "though finding in sin a fresh call for the incarnation, yet this determined not the fact, but only the form under which it should hold." "The archetypal conception in the divine mind, overthrown by the fraud and malice of Satan in the first Adam, we find in this second Adam in the complete elimination of all the abnormal forces, carried along in the bosom of humanity, not only restored and realized, but perfected and advanced." This is in Christ incarnate down here. He " exhibited what, from the start, lay really and truly in the normal sense of humanity." Nay, even "the church, it fully appears, was no necessity of the fall. It existed anterior to the accident of sin; and, had the fall never occurred, would have continued, though not under the subsequent form of mediatorial offices and propitiatory agencies, but as a divine instrumentality, answering man's normal development. It sprang necessarily out of our moral constitution and our relation to God as the subjects of His moral government." " True to this law of his own moral being, he would have been advanced, without bodily decay and decomposition, to a state of full glorification, but only through the appearance, ultimately, of the Logos incarnate." Thus sin was an accident, impotent, as is said elsewhere, to hinder the course of God's purposes, foreseen indeed of God; and redemption by blood itself, an accident, a provision, a " change of procedure," "a subsequent form," dependent on this accident. " But it will be borne in mind that Christ was not a new humanity, a creation de novo; His was Adam's humanity as under the power of the curse." " In its commencement it was human nature, the same as that of His virgin mother, and therefore fallen." It is added indeed, " From the moment of the holy conception sin was eliminated."
But this is not the doctrine of their leading theologian, and in a discourse published by the request of the Synod he holds that "on the divine side, that which was divine was mediated by the Divine Spirit, and so found pure generical beginning in fallen and depraved human nature. In this bosom of the abnormal human the divine gradually assumed the normal human, by a steady victory over corrupt human nature in the womb, forward to the birth of the Holy Child." " So on through life, it is fully and naturally human. Though as human He is tempted, truly and really tempted, He is always victorious over defect and corruption of that nature." Under the law "which He has assumed, and which ever presses upon and vitally touches His pure life at every point, thus presenting to the world the picture... of a sinless man. Thus in His own personal human nature He obtained, first of all, a complete victory over that abnormal humanity with which He had formed a union, presenting it fully restored to its normal purity, in His own person, especially exhausting and overcoming at every point the, virus of sin and death, till He came forth from the grave victorious over its last power and penalty, and glorified human nature in the heavens. All this was one continuous silently-working, steady, victorious miracle, going forward in His own person, a victory of sinlessness overcoming depravity by the process of His divine human life in the womb. Though made of this woman... He was still made under the law, that is, His human nature had to be purely developed out of the bosom of an impure humanity." (See Rom. 8:2; 2 Cor. 13:4.) I add the quotations to show that they carry the principle on to the cross.
This is pure Irvingism. A sinless effect was produced, but by His being victorious over an evil nature within: where defect and corruption existed, He restored it to purity, but it was with corrupt abnormal humanity He had formed a union and had to overcome the virus of sin. Where was it? " This victory was first in Himself, that it might be also for us. It had to take place in Him, because He is the principle and fountain of life to all. 'For their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.' Let these great words be understood." They are wholly misunderstood. They were spoken when He was going to His Father (John 17), as He says in the passage, " Now, I am no more in the world." He was setting Himself apart as the glorified Man in heaven; not what He had been doing all His life. He knew no sin. It was a "holy thing" that was born of the Virgin Mary.
So, to the same purpose, is quoted by them, " He learned obedience," and " being made perfect" " As His own divine human life thus sanctified and perfected" (think of a divine life needing sanctification!) " was to become the restoring and perfecting life of humanity, it had to extend beyond Himself, that it might begin and carry forward to a like victory fallen and depraved human nature in others." " But it must lay hold also on the fallen world beyond man." " And all the particular miracles wrought by Him are only individual manifestations of that same divine human miracle life." " The miracle is supernatural because its force is the life of a higher world." Consequently, dividing the Red Sea and the Jordan was no miracle, nor the earth opening and swallowing up Dathan and Abiram. Christ's divine works were miracles of good: but the definition is as false as the doctrine is.
I do not go into all this system, fully developed as it is in. Europe, and borrowed here. " Human nature in its creation free from all sin... was not yet perfect, but awaited process in order to become perfect. How much more was such a process of development, not only possible, but also necessary, in the fallen humanity which. the Son of God assumed." " We assent here, with Lange, that the very idea of temptation implies the possibility of sinning." " His triumph over the temptation of the devil was a personal victory, a step in the process of His own perfecting of Himself, as well as for the benefit of His people." " This view is required by the nature of Christ's human will." It is then said, " if the human in the person of Christ had been compelled by an overshadowing power to will as it did." But this flows from their idea that the corruption and " virus of sin," of a fallen abnormal nature was there. The non-possibility of sinning did not even arise from a compelling power, for then, without that. power, He might. It would not have been the holiness of His nature, but from the intrinsic rightness of Christ's will, in His holy person, as a man. Their darkened understandings have not been able to distinguish between morally impossible, and here absolutely so, and impossibility by compulsion; because they have a false unholy Christ. The Christ of God had no inclination to sin. His will was only to obey: and He was led of the Spirit to he tempted.
As regards the sympathy of the Lord, on the ground of which His liability to inward temptations, and even His peccability, is insisted on, it fails altogether. For the sorrow and discouragement of sincere souls do not come from the existence of sin in the flesh, but much more from their yielding to it. Now, if they are to get sympathy here by Christ being in the same state, He must have failed. But then all is lost. And if not, the whole argument is proved false on its very base. Such persons do not know what true deliverance is. Nor do I ask for sympathy for sin, but the word to judge it, and deliverance from its power by redemption and the Holy Ghost, in the knowledge that I have no strength. The advocacy of Christ to restore communion if we do fail, when we are free from the law of sin and death, is founded on righteousness and propitiation.
But as I am on this point, I add, they have no true Christ at all. I read, " How such human nature, as body, soul, and spirit, including a human will, could be held in personal union with the divine, so that this humanity was complete, without a human personality or ego, we cannot understand, but we believe it is a mystery revealed for faith." Where? Why does the blessed Lord say, " Not my will but Thine?" Why does He say, " My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me?" if there was no ego, no human personality? Why do the Hebrews quote, " will I sing praise," and " will put my trust in Him," " behold I and the children which God hath given me," if there was no I (ego)? Why does He say, "My God and your God, my Father and your Father" (not our), if there was no personality?
And this last remark, that Christ never says "our" with His disciples, I borrow from a European minister of some note, thoroughly imbued with the German system, where it is at home, not borrowed, and itself spoiled, as it is at Mercersburg. And this last statement, that Christ had no human personality, no ego, which is really heresy (though God and man were united in one person), and the mere folly of man attempting to fathom the mystery of His person, when He has said, "No man knoweth the Son, but the Father," is found in the Article of one by no means the worst of their doctors. His antecedent respect for the blessed Lord has not been destroyed, as in others of them. But all hold it was corrupt fallen human nature which He took and had; not that He took human nature from a fallen mother, but without sin, miraculously, by the power of the Holy Ghost. But he is the least bad on this point.
But my object here is to bring the system fully into the light. Hence I quote several passages to show it is the system, not individual opinion. Thus another says to us, The temptability of Christ grew out of His peccability; His peccability out of the realness of the human side of His being. What is less than infinite is temptable and peccable. Christ's humanity was less than infinite; therefore His humanity might have been overthrown." And that, note, united in one person to Godhead, without there being even an I, or human personality—a word wrongly used really-in His human nature! Was ever such folly and confusion? God united to fallen humanity, with defect and corruption and the virus of sin in it My hand revolts at writing such blasphemous absurdities.
This taking the fallen human nature, the ultimate generic principle of redemption, " accounts for the striking analogy between the birth of the God-man and the new birth of every human soul that is now born from Him. Both alike are a birth to a true and pure human life, out of a fallen and defiled humanity, by the operation of the Holy Ghost."
" This birth is vouchsafed to as many as receive Him." This last gross misapplication (indeed false sense) of John 1:12 I quote, as connecting itself with the subsequent teaching as to baptism. I add another here, to show the strange heretical confusion of those teachers: " If therefore we say that in baptism a real immanence of the nature of Christ and of human nature, a mysterious oneness of His holy essence and the sinful essence of man, is brought about, we also hold fast to the idea that this is not to be regarded as an immanence finished and immediate, but one endless beginning." Think of one endless beginning, of a oneness of Christ's holy essence and the sinful essence of man! Is this endless oneness(!) of holy essence and sinful essence a moral oneness, or what?
We have thus the Lord's incarnation, the point where (they say) He connects Himself with human nature; not merely per sonally, or rather not personally (so they expressly say), but in nature as the new head of the race (He is not a man, not a human personality, but) with humanity, and that fallen humanity the new head of the race. This is continued in men by a new birth, the continuation of this divine human life, and this last not by the word, but by baptism, through which there is a mysterious oneness of His holy and man's sinful essence, and this forms the body of Christ I must give some quotations to make the last point evident. The general statement is thus: " The Spirit in Christ, the Spirit having entered into the apostles in the mystery of Pentecost extraordinarily, the Spirit, by their divinely appointed ministrations, through holy baptism." Thus it grows into a holy temple. " The life of Christ infuses itself through the foundation and the entire organism of this life-building."
Further, preaching presents the claims to us: " This preaching is the means by which the quickening energy of the Spirit opens the blinded eye of faith to an apprehension of the sinner's estate as dead, and the spiritual discernment of the kingdom of life, as the power of deliverance from this ruin. Now, this faith is the organ of the human spirit by which the objective supernatural order is discerned, and its participation is made possible. But this subjective power of discernment and receptivity is by no means one with an actual entrance into it and a participation in its life. It is only the qualification and ability so to do." " But unless the human activity is met by a curative response on the part of Christ, the soul still remains under the power of death" (only it has got its eyes opened). " The office of the apostle, preparatory preaching, is then simply to effect the preparation on the part of the sinful subject for the reception of the communication of grace. The meeting of the human and divine activities we have in the sacrament of baptism."
"The question now is by which of these means specifically does God design to effect this wondrous work; by the word or by the sacraments? Not by the word, that is, as we have defined it, the preaching of the gospel, and for this plain reason: preaching is directed to the mind or intellect, the moving of the affections and of the will is not reaching the life-center of the being; the intellect or mind is not the life of man; all the thinking, feeling, or willing that one can do, though assisted in their acts by a divine power, cannot of themselves make a man a new creature in Christ Jesus. This inward radical divine work must be accomplished, therefore, by the only other means-the sacraments.... Baptism is the ordinance of this mysterious union.... Holy baptism is the means of grace whereby the Holy Spirit ingrafts, for the first time in any substantial sense, the believer into Christ, and thus brings him into a state of salvation."
I continue: " In that Christ as the unseen Head stands in an inward indisputable relation to the church as His mystical body-i.e., that total organization of souls which has its point of personal unity in Him, receives the power of life from Him through it, renews and animates itself, and the members themselves are all its organs-He, by means of baptism causes this universal organic relation to become effectual in each single new point of life which He appropriates to Himself and His Kingdom. As He continues His life through the church as a whole, so He also continues it through this particular mode of individual life, and therefore makes Himself the true beginning of life to it."
But, faith being necessary, as they hold, "The child stands on the warm bosom of the faith of the church, which, through its parents or sponsors, is pledged in its behalf." " Neither can we say that the word is the specific means of grace, whereby men are ingrafted into Christ. The word, as preached by the apostles, was a call to Christ. This was its object, to turn the attention of men to Him, as the true Messiah, the Son of God, the Savior of the world. When they were ready to receive Him, they were baptized into Him, and thus made members of Him." " Christian baptism then, we think the Scriptures teach, is the sacrament of our incorporation into Christ." " The word has to do with truth; the sacrament with life. The one operates upon the intellect and affections; the other upon the center of the being. By the word men are brought mentally and morally into contact with Christ; by the sacrament into actual life contact." " The theology then we speak of is churchly. It believes in the church... in the bosom of which only, not on the outside of it, the gospel can be expected to work, as the wisdom of God and the power of God unto salvation. So far as this goes, of course, it owns and confesses that the church is a medium of communication between Christ and His people." (His people, then, are not the church!) "They must be in the order of His grace, in the sphere where this objective working of His grace is actually going forward, and not in the order of nature, where it is not going forward at all (but where Satan reigns and has his own way), if the work of redemption and sanctification is to be carried forward in them with full effect. In this sense, most assuredly, salvation is of the church, and not of the world," etc. Now that, as a general truth, sanctification is to be looked for in the church, not in the world, is all true enough. But the gospel, they say, cannot work outside of it; the poor heathen are in a bad way, and redemption is carrying on, and that only inside it. Salvation is not of the world, assuredly, but it is to the world, and could never have been, had it not come to it as such; nor could the church otherwise have existed. The grace of God brings salvation-where? to those already within, or without, to bring them in?
There are some points I shall touch on just in detail; but I assert now that the whole of this system is totally antichristian and antiscriptural: " Christ incarnate is the point of union, and His divine-human life is continued by baptism; the word is not the means of communicating it; baptism incorporates into Christ; the accident of sin produced a change of procedure (that is all): man was to be perfected in Christ at any rate." All this is false; Scripture, as to the main points, teaches precisely the contrary: and God's glory is wholly, totally left out in a most extraordinary way. Human perfection is the only thought.
Now, that it was in the wondrous counsels of God to have man in the same glory as His Son, is, however wonderful, blessedly true. That Christ is life, our life who believe, is equally so. The question is where and how life in this system, not death, is the means of redemption. "His saving life exerts its redeeming and restoring power in humanity, not by becoming an individual man among men, and then operating on the general life of humanity, but by entering into it; and this entering is by birth, so that the new creation of human nature in its organic being falls together and co-ordinate with natural human birth. The reheading of humanity is thus effected in its very beginning by the union of the divine-human life "-(two human lives again in Christ)-"with human life in a human birth, even as man's first creation was completed by the conjunction of the breath of God with the human lifeless form, when God made man a living soul by breathing into him the breath of life. From all this we cannot but see that the person of the God-man, which is constituted by the real and true union of the divine and human, is the ultimate generic principle of redemption."
Humanity (in its nature) is redeemed by incarnation; and this is carried on by baptism I Now, all this is definitely contrary to the revelation of God; and, in that sense, a denial of Christianity. It is true that conformity to the image of God's Son is the portion of God's saints; true that God's delight was in the sons of men before the world, and that the Lord did not take up angels but the seed of Abraham; true that the incarnation was the expression of good pleasure in men; true, not that the human-divine life of Christ was the generic source of the race before the incarnation, but that the Son quickened souls from Adam onwards; true that He is now the life of all believers; and the Head of His body, the church. But reunion with Christ, connection with Him, is with a glorified Christ, and with a glorified Christ alone, after He had accomplished redemption. As the first Adam sinned and was cast out before he began to be the head of the race so the perfect and divine ground of righteousness was laid and complete before Christ, as man, became head of a new race as man.. It is with a glorified Christ that the. church is united, and with no other. There are many errors and heresies in the system; but, if this be so, the whole system is fundamentally false. It is a false Christianity, "another (a different)' gospel, which is not another," for another there cannot be. Death and redemption must conic in before we can be united to Christ. What Scripture shows us is the counsels of God before the world, for uniting us in grace to Christ in glory; then God not beginning with that, but with the responsible man, Adam. When he had failed, and, fully tested, was found an enemy of God, there came the, second Man, the Lord, to seek and to save what -was lost; and, when He (having glorified God as made sin) had accomplished redemption in His death, to unite us with Himself as gone on high.
Man failed in innocence: failed under the law: killed the prophets sent in mercy: and, then, God said, "I have yet one Son; it may be they will reverence my Son." "But they cast Him out of the vineyard and slew Him." There was lawlessness without law: transgression under law: and, when God came in grace, absolute enmity against Him. The Son had quickened whom He would, no doubt, all along; and their sins were forgiven through His blood: but man, as such, was, then, fully and finally proved enmity against God. Flesh was not subject to the law of God, nor could be; and they that are in the flesh cannot please God. Not only was man driven out from God's paradise on earth, as a sinner; but he had, as far as he could do so, driven God out when He came in grace into this world. " If I had' not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin; but now they have no cloak for their sin. If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin; but now they have both seen and hated both Me and My Father." Such was man, guilty in fact, and lost in estate. Redemption was needed: not merely a communication of life: not redemption by a mystical communication of life-a thing totally unknown to Scripture; but redemption through Christ's blood, propitiation: not the folly of " oneness of a holy essence and a sinful essence:" but to be born anew, wholly "created in Christ Jesus;" being redeemed out of the state he was in, and associated with the Redeemer, but only when the redemption was accomplished. Christ the Lord came, as Son of God, and King of Israel, according to the second Psalm; a minister of the circumcision, to fulfill the promises made to the fathers; but the kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers took counsel together against Jehovah and against His anointed. He was the despised and rejected of men. He came into the world: and the world was made by Him: and the world knew Him not. He came unto His own: and His own received Him not. Those who did receive Him were born, not of the will of man, but of God.
Still His title was good. He was also Son of man. But when was He to take this? When rejected, God gave witness to Him, as Son of God in raising Lazarus, as Son of David in riding in on the ass. One title yet remained; when was He to take that up and have others connected with Him? The Greeks came up desiring to see Jesus: "The hour is come," He says, "that the Son of Man should be glorified. Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it ABIDETH ALONE; but if it die it bringeth forth much fruit" (John 12) The Son of man must die, that others might be associated with Him. Without that, He abode alone. Hence it was, that, when He had given full testimony, He charged His disciples strictly to tell no man that He was the Christ; saying, " The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected, and put to death, and rise again the third day." Hence, as in the former passage, in John 12, His soul was troubled, and He said, " Father, save me from this hour, but for this cause came I to this hour; Father, glorify Thy name;" and then, " I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me." It was a dying Savior that was this point of gathering; one rejected by man, but, by sovereign grace, therein a Savior. He rises again, and is glorified to be in the place where He connects man with Himself; so that ' He that sanctifieth and they that are sanctified are all of one, for which cause He is not ashamed to call them brethren." And if He was made a little lower than the angels, why so?-" For the suffering of death, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for every man" (or "thing"). And then we read, " It became Him for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through suffering." It was not by incarnation He sanctified any one. " By the which will we are sanctified, by the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all." And now see another aspect of it, the glory of God and of the Son of man Himself. It became God, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through suffering. These doctors only see man, humanity, aptitude for humanity: God and His glory have no place in their system. They quote the passage, " The life was the light of men." Let me finish the sentence for them, which they do not: "And the light shineth in darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not." Rejection, and increased guilt, and proof of sin, was the only fruit in man of incarnation taken by itself. It was condemnation, not life, to others, " for this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil." When the blessed Lord, being in the form of God, made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men, was it there His blessed career of grace stopped? No! " Being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross; WHEREFORE also God hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name above every name, that at the name of Jesus everyknee should bow" (Philip. 2.) Here it is He takes the place of head of the new creation.
In John 13, as soon as Judas went out to betray Him, the Lord says, Now is the Son of man glorified, and. God is glorified in Him; and if God be glorified in. Him, God shall also glorify Him in Himself, and shall straightway glorify Him;" and He has, as man, been exalted into the glory of God. So, in John 17, " I have finished the work which Thou gavest me to do; and now, Father, glorify Thou Me with Thine own self, with the glory I had with Thee before the world was." And it is as thus perfected in glory that He has become " the author of eternal salvation to all them that obey Him."
But God was glorified in Him also. All good and evil came to an issue on the cross, and there only perfectly. There was man's absolute evil enmity against God come into the world in goodness, power in grace that removed every evil brought in by sin, even to death; but, as that displayed God's presence, it drew out man's enmity. The sin was not healed by it, but made fully manifest in its absolute character. They killed the Prince of Life. There the complete power of Satan over men was manifested and exercised,-the prince of this world came. There the perfection of man in Christ; the prince of this world had nothing in Him; but there was perfect love to the Father, and perfect obedience displayed by Him. Perfect righteousness against sin, in God, was displayed as nowhere else; but perfect love to the sinner. Nor could these both have been manifested together in any other way. Cutting off men might be righteous, but no love; sparing them all without atonement, held to be love, but no righteousness; nor would destroying them all be God's glory but defeat and failure. But through Christ's death God's majesty, what became Him, His righteousness, His infinite love and truth -all have been glorified, and the foundation of the new heavens and new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness, laid in Christ's appearing, in the consummation of ages, to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. " Through the eternal Spirit He offered Himself without spot to God " (Heb. 9) All this we are to believe is through the accident of sin, which changed the mode of procedure, humanity being the end of all! But if the Prince of this world was cast out by this wondrous work, then was the judgment of this world.
Where then, in all this, was reconciliation? The incarnate Word, the Son of God, was rejected. The premediating heathen, in whom Christ's life was germinally and prophetically, as they tell us, were-the apostle tells us (Eph. 2)-without Christ, strangers to the covenants of promise, and without God in the world, given up in judgment to a reprobate mind (Rom. 1), because they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, by nature children of wrath, walking according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air. And how reconciled-or where redemption? In incarnation, and the uniting the divine life in Christ with fallen humanity? Not at all. " And you, who were alienated and enemies in your minds by wicked works, yet now hath He reconciled in the body of His flesh through death" (Col. 1) " God was in Christ reconciling" -not He had by incarnation done so. The world would not have Him in that character. He was occupied with that work, but totally rejected. Satan was the prince of this world, and the world came under judgment. The wrath of God was revealed: and then, Christ having died, the work was committed to His ambassadors.
There was no link formed by Christ Jesus with other men by His incarnation. Preparation was made for it: but it issued in the judgment of this world. If we look to life and union in the church, the body of Christ, its fullest and highest character; is it in incarnation, or with a glorified Savior, and (for us) by a new creation? No union till He is glorified! " What is the exceeding greatness of His power to usward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power, which He wrought in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand in heavenly places, etc., and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him that filleth all in all." He is not in the place of head till He is glorified. And, when we were dead in sins, God hath quickened us together with Christ, and raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ. We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works. If any man be in Christ, it is a new creation: " old things are passed away, all things are become new." Therefore the apostle knew no man after the flesh; yea, though he had known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth he knew Him no more. Christ had come as the Messiah of the Jews, as the crown, if He had been received, of humanity; but as such He had been rejected, and now it was only through redemption by blood, and as a glorified Christ, that man could have connection with Him.
Does Peter, who enters less into the counsels of God than Paul, take a different ground from this? No; " we are begotten again to a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead." Is redemption otherwise than by blood? " We are redeemed, not with corruptible things, as silver and gold, but with the precious blood of Christ; " and we " by him do believe in God who raised Him up from the dead and gave Him glory, that our faith and hope might be in God." It is by His stripes we are healed, and if He be our life, it is as risen. In Col. as in Eph., when we were dead in sins He hath quickened us together with him: He suffered, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God. Hence in John also (chap. 6.),
where He speaks of the bread come down from heaven, He takes care to add, " If ye eat not the flesh of the Son of man, and drink His blood, ye have no life in you."
They tell us that God has gathered together all things in Christ. Scripture does not say so; but that God has made known to us the mystery of His will, that in the dispensation of the fullness of times He will do so, in whom (Christ) we have received an inheritance, and that we are sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, which is the earnest of our inheritance, till the redemption of the purchased possession to the praise of His glory (Eph. 1) So, in Romans, we are heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if so be we suffer with Him that we may be glorified together. Not only so, but we are assured that all things are not put under Christ now (Heb. 2), but He is crowned with glory and honor, according to Psa. 8, and He is sitting, not on His own throne yet, but on His Father's, expecting, at the right hand of the Majesty in the heavens, till His enemies be made His footstool. So Peter: The prophets, searching their own prophecies, found it was not to themselves but to us they did minister the things which are now reported to you, by them that have preached the gospel to you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; and we are to be sober and hope to the end.
God will head-up all things in heaven and in earth in Christ, but, though He was incarnate that it might be so, incarnation did not put Him in this place. Though all power is given Him in heaven and in earth, He is not in this headship yet. His incarnation brought Him into universal rejection: man saw no beauty in Him to desire Him; it was the time of His rejection, not of every knee bowing to Him, nor is that time come yet. Now He sits on the right hand of God expecting. These doctors make it a sanctifying of arts, sciences, etc., on earth, by penetrating life. The Scriptures make it a bearing of the cross now, separate from the world; a suffering with Him, and then a glorious Christ, under whom are reconciled all things in heaven and in earth, as reigning in glory: and that we only are reconciled now by His death, and He expecting till His enemies are made His footstool; and always (εἰς τὸ διηνεχές), now, and, till then, sitting at the right hand of God, while His joint-heirs are being gathered.
Through death He has glorified God, through death destroyed him that had the power of death, that is, the devil. It is the travail of His soul that He is Himself to see. Through death He has reconciled us to God; redemption is through His blood. It is as glorifying God on the cross that He is glorified by God; it is by His blood He has redeemed out of every nation: hereby know we love, in that He laid down His life for us; He came to give His life a ransom fog many. There He was made sin for us, who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him (2 Cor. 5) His incarnation drew out the enmity: by the cross He reconciled Jew and Gentile in one body, making peace. What He had seen and heard, that He testified, and no man received His testimony. When He came, there was no man; when He called, there was none to answer. He spoke that He knew, and He testified that He had seen, and they received not His witness. God came out to man in Christ, and man rejected Him, crucified the blessed One come in grace. But the veil was rent in His death, but never till then, and men can go to God in the Holiest. It was not by life, precious as that is, but by death that He redeemed us and reconciled us to God.
The whole system is utterly antichristian and antiscriptural: moreover it is, as a natural consequence, a perverted and false system practically. It insists on the union of supernatural grace and the order of nature in this world, and makes Christ's headship to be in enjoyable arts and sciences in this world, instead of, as He says, taking up the cross and following Him-setting our affection on things above, not on things on the earth, as being with Him dead, and our life hid with Him in God. If Christianity be true, this system is false. If it were not for the extreme ignorance of Scripture, both textual and critical, which they
display, I should say the audacity of their statements would be marvelous, but I suppose much of it may be attributed to ignorance.
They say that the communication of life is not by the word but by sacraments. Now what saith the Scripture? " Of His own will begat He us by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of first fruits of His creatures" (James 1:18). So Peter: "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God which liveth and abideth forever." We are all children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. Now faith cometh by hearing (ἀχόη), and hearing by the word of God: he that heareth My word and believeth Him that sent Me hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation, but is passed from death unto life (John 5:24). It pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe (1 Cor. 1:21). Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness (Rom. 4: 3). For this cause thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but, as it is in truth, the word of God, which worketh effectually in them that believe (1 Thess. 2:13). Lastly, when the church had become utterly corrupt, as bad as the heathen, so that the times were perilous, the apostle refers to the Scriptures as able to make wise to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus (2 Tim. 3) I shall refer to this again when I come to speak a word of the church. I have quoted only direct passages as to the word, of faith in it, quickening and vivifying. There are many other passages which speak indirectly to the same purpose.
They tell us baptism is what gives life and incorporates into the body of Christ. First, as to life, no passage that I can call to mind states anything of the sort. Before Christ, and during His life, it clearly could not be. When Christ was there, the dead heard the voice of the Son of God, and they that heard lived. I can only take their quotations. They quote Peter's statement in Acts 2, but nothing is said there of communicating life at all. They were to be baptized for the remission of sins, and they would then receive the Holy Ghost. They were baptized in Samaria when they believed; of course they were, but no word of life or life-contact. The case of the eunuch is then quoted, the writer being ignorant that the verse is not genuine: but even with it not a word about life. Lydia and the jailer were baptized, and their households: but no word of receiving life. Saul was called to arise and wash away his sins for the formal administration of forgiveness. I do not doubt this had real force, though it is not the ground of it, but the death of Christ whereby we are justified by faith: but not one of them alludes to communication of life by baptism.
Our doctors claim the interpretation of she Scriptures for themselves; if any one wants to see what it is worth, he may learn from their comment on the texts they have quoted as to " the word." They prove to us that Peter does not use "the word" of the preaching of the gospel, from the fact that he says that it "liveth and abideth forever," which cannot be affirmed of preaching:-is not that profound? They seem to be ignorant that Peter only quoted a passage of Isaiah affirming that the gospel was a fulfillment of it. Did they never read " the word preached"? The word is what is preached, and so the apostle would say, "It pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe." Who does not see that it is not the act of preaching (that is the part of the preacher), but "the word preached"? But God has chosen by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. It is wearisome to notice such absurdity. Supposing I were to say, "Eating his dinner has quite set him up, “and a Mercersburg theologian, claiming to be an interpreter of the word and refusing " private interpretation," should say," Eating cannot set a man up;" what answer can one give to such wisdom but to say, ἀπέχει, All right; I quite agree? The passage of James, ch. 1: 18, is passed over as lightly as possible-no wonder.
When Paul writes of Christ sanctifying the church "by the washing of water by the word," they tell us it means water and the word, an "unmistakable testimony to the importance and force of holy baptism." What when the Lord says, Ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you; and note, that if so, the word as spoken of us in Eph. 5 never can be applied to the soul again: for baptism cannot be repeated. But they have to change the passage to make their use of it. It is alleged that it is affirming that the "Holy Spirit has power to act in an extraordinary way, dispensing with the ordinary organs of communication." So indeed the Lord affirms He does as to this very matter. The wind blows where it lists, and ye hear the sound thereof, but cannot tell whence it cometh or whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit. It is curious how they go in the teeth of the word, doubtless through ignorance.
But the word of God is the ordinary means, the divinely-appointed means, of communicating life, as we have seen: which baptism is never said to be. They speak of magical operation: it is very irreverent when speaking of being born of the Spirit who is the immediate divine agent of imparting the divine nature. "That which is born of the Spirit is spirit;" but what more magical than a little clean water, and a few words spoken by a man who pretends to have power to do it, being the means of communicating divine life! Far from me to despise baptism; I believe it to be the divinely-appointed door of admission to the place where God has placed His peculiar blessings on the earth. For such a place there was in Israel, and such a place there is in Christendom, awful as its state may be: not of entrance into the body (of this I will speak), but into that habitation which God has set up, and where He dwells by His Spirit. But not only is baptism not life-giving; but it does not mean it even as a sign. It is to the death of Christ we are baptized, unto, not into; we are not baptized into anything, but unto. They were not baptized into Moses, and it is the same word: so, "Whereunto were ye baptized?" Here the translators, though they changed it when they could, could not misstate it. The answer was " Unto John's baptism." We were baptized unto (είς) Christ's death. How? There is no dead Christ, and you cannot be baptized into His death. We are identified with Him (σύμφυτοι) "in the likeness of His death."
The only connection with life is the passage in Col. 2 "Wherein also we are risen with Him;" but there it is carefully added, "by faith in the operation of God who raised Him from the dead:" and even there the coming up out of baptism is resurrection with Him: not simply quickening or life-giving, but formally distinct from it. Baptism is death,-reception in the visible assembly, through death of that which we were, as alive in the first Adam, the death of Christ: as to putting on Christ in Gal. 3, it is only the public profession of Him, as contrasted with Jew or Gentile, Barbarian, Scythian, bond or free, male or female. The passage itself is that which declares that "we are all children of God (not by baptism but) by faith in Christ Jesus." Nor is it incorporating into Christ. There is positive testimony to the contrary: " For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body." The Holy Ghost come dοwn from heaven unites to the glorified Head in heaven. That baptism of the Spirit, we are told, took place on the day of Pentecost. " He that is joined to the Lord is one spirit;" others, when they came in amongst them, partook of the same Holy Ghost.
But perhaps the most curious effect in detail of this anti-scriptural system is the absolute denial of all operation of the Holy Ghost by the gospel in the world. "It (the church) meets us exactly at the right point, as setting forth the form and manner in which Christ, by the Holy Ghost, carries forward His work of salvation in the world. If we are to hold fast the objective historical character of what this work was first, and still continues to be in His own person (mark the work is first in the person of Christ), it cannot be allowed to lose itself in the agency of the Spirit in a general view, it must necessarily involve for us the conception of a special sphere, this likewise objective and historical, within which only (and not in the world at large) the Holy Ghost of the gospel is to be regarded as working. This is the church." " To look for it in the world by private spiritualistic negotiations with God... is to look for it where it is not to be found."
Now, I ask, in opposition to this teaching, were Paul's evangelistic labors in the church or in the world? That the church was formed by them, where it was not before, no doubt: and doubtless the converts were all baptized. But where was the Holy Ghost of the gospel working? Was it " not in the world at large," as they say? It is as absurd as it is evil. Let us hear what he says. Did he preach the gospel in the church or in the world? He distinguishes this double ministry (Col. 1) But the Lord Himself before Paul, " Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.... And they went forth and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word by signs following them. And to Paul: "The Gentiles, to whom now I send thee to open their eyes," etc. So Paul:
"Whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel which is come unto you, as it is in all the world, and bringing forth fruit, as it doth in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth." And what was this gospel? We read in Eph. 1:13, " The word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, in whom also, after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise." He does not think it worth while to mention their baptism, though, doubtless, it took place.
I said he distinguished his gospel ministry and his church ministry: Col. 1:23, " The gospel which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven, whereof I Paul am made a minister.".. Then " His body's sake, the church, whereof I am made a minister, to fulfill (complete) the word of God." I may add here, what belongs to another point, that the reconciliation of all things, which they affirm to be going on now, is distinguished from our reconciliation now who form the true church (see verses 20 and 21, 22). Again Paul declares himself a debtor to the Greeks and to the Barbarians, to the wise and to the unwise; not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of—God unto salvation to every one that believeth, to the Jew first and also to the Greek, for therein is the righteousness of God revealed; and in the doctrinal part of the Romans, all is absolutely individual, only in the hortatory part is there any allusion to the church. There it comes in as a known fact. His boast is that he preached where Christ had not been heard of (2 Cor. 10; Rom. 1:5).. He would not have anything to do with the church in this service (Gal. 1:16,17). It was where Christ was not named; he went directly from Christ, " not of man nor by man, but by Jesus Christ and God the Father." (Comp. Rom. 10 v. 15-21.) What the apostle boasts of as his glory, these theologians denounce. But more, the commission in Matt. 28 was never carried out; Paul's took its place (Gal. 2:6-9), and Paul puts his mission in contrast on these points with theirs. They may have gone abroad, as Mark 16; but this is the only allusion to it in Scripture: the tradition as to it being a very late one.
But, besides, Paul declares he was not sent to baptize at all, -but to preach the gospel. I know our theologians, with the Baptists, say this was for fear of its being thought he baptized in his own name. But this is a come-off. He positively declares Christ did not send him to baptize but to preach the gospel: the cross, the death of Christ-foolishness, no doubt, to a ritualist, but to us who are saved the power of God. But is it not a strange thing if life-contact is only in baptism, he should tell us he was not sent to do the only thing which gives life, and to do that which " the Holy Ghost of the gospel" does not do?
Pity he was not sent to Mercersburg. And somehow he "laid the foundation" in his ministry. As regards the full revelation of the mystery of the church, a dispensation was committed to him. The whole testimony of Paul, both as to the gospel and as to the church, is set aside by these ritualists; that is, of him to whom the mission to the Gentiles was specially committed by Christ himself, and relinquished by the apostles at Jerusalem.
But let us consider this doctrine of the church scripturally and historically too: for these doctors avoid history to replace it by dreams of their own fancy. We have the church or assembly of God under three aspects in Scripture, primarily two, and then one of the two as the effect of divine workmanship, and as the effect of the work as entrusted to the responsibility of man: "The body," if we speak of that which is united to Christ, the glorified Head in heaven (Eph. 1 and 5. Comp. 1 Cor. 12), set up on earth, but to be complete and perfected in heaven, is not formed by baptism. Simon Magus, for instance, was baptized; but had neither part nor lot in the matter; the 120 at Jerusalem had formed the nucleus of the church, but were never baptized at all. There is no trace of it, nor anybody to do it: yet they were the church itself at its starting. It is, we are expressly told, "by one Spirit we are baptized into one body." This baptism, we know from Acts 1, was on the day of Pentecost. The truth concerning this one body was more fully developed in Paul's ministry. But Christ exalted on high was the head, those who had the Holy Ghost the members. He that is joined to the Lord is one spirit. It is never connected with water-baptism, nor are there rotten members of Christ's body. An unbeliever not born of God is not a member of Christ's body. He is " without Christ;" nay, more, If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His." " Ye are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if so be the Spirit of God dwell in you." "There is no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus." " The whole body edifies itself in love; " they are "members one of another." The " Head is Christ, from whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, maketh increase of the body to the edifying of itself in love." So "there is one Spirit and one body, even as we are called in one hope of our calling; " and then "one Lord, one faith, one baptism;" and then "one God and Father of all:" the circle each time widening with the Spirit: the Lord: and God the Father. The same distinction is made in 1 Cor. 1:2.
This is one aspect of the assembly of God. There is another-it is the "habitation of God," ',and that now "by the Spirit." But this is viewed in a double way in the word: Christ builds; and man builds. " On this rock Twill build My church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." But here Christ is the builder, and the building unfinished, nor can Satan hinder its being built. He can catch the sheep and scatter them, but not pluck (catch) them out of Christ's hand. So Peter: the living stones come and are built upon the living Stone, a spiritual house; no human agency is spoken of as bringing them. So Paul: "fitly joined and compacted it groweth to a holy temple in the Lord." This house is not yet finished, it is growing, grace is carrying it on; it is not that life is given by energy in a sacrament: but living stones come. But when I come to 1 Cor. 3 it is another matter. Here man's responsibility comes in and man's agency. As a wise master-builder, Paul laid the foundation; but every one was to take heed how he builded thereon. If he builded with gold, silver, or precious stones, he would receive a reward; if with wood and hay and stubble, his work would be burnt up: in a word, the work depended on the responsibility of man. Looked at as to the result on earth, God's temple might be badly built: and man, as he has ever done from Adam, has wholly failed. This I shall show. The papacy, and then ritualists, drinking in their sweetened poison through their utterly false views as to baptism (false in every respect), have confounded Christ's work in building, yet unfinished, with their own wood and hay and stubble; or worse, they tell us that, by an organic system of clergy and baptism, it is to restore the race and bring in consecration of everything to God, uniting the supernatural with the natural as it did in Christ, or grace and nature till it culminates in glory I Now let us see what God tells us. First looked at as the kingdom of heaven: When Christ had sowed the good seed, the enemy came and sowed tares, and the evil done had to remain till the harvest; the wheat of Christ's sowing was not spoiled, but the crop was, here. Next take Jude: False brethren crept in unawares, baptized with the organic system we must suppose, but false brethren always, no life-contact with Christ, but spots in their feasts of charity, and of these Enoch prophesied, The Lord cometh with ten thousand of His saints to execute judgment. The evil went on to the end. In John we have the other character of evil. They had gone out, apostatized, were not of them though they had been among them. The last times were already come marked by these antichrists. Paul more fully: The mystery of iniquity did already work; only there was what hindered it, and when this was gone, the man of sin would be revealed, whom the Lord will destroy by the brightness of His coming. He could say already, All seek their own, not the things of Jesus Christ.
In 2d Timothy we have the Holy Ghost's directions when the church had fallen into this evil estate. God's sure foundation remained, the Lord knew them that they were His: and whoever named the name of the Lord was to depart from iniquity. In a great house (for such would the church become) there age vessels of gold, silver, and earth, some to honor and some to dishonor; if a man purged himself from these last, he would be a vessel to honor and fit for the Master's use. Spiritual judgment must discern what these teachers were worth in the house, for it would contain all sorts. But further, so far from trusting the church, in the last days perilous times would come, and a description is given of Christendom, the same (save two or three words) as that of the heathen in Rom. 1, not of the world without. There would be a form of piety denying its force; believers were to turn away from such. What was their resource? The Scriptures expressly: what Paul taught, and the Scriptures given by inspiration of God, that, when the church was gone to ruin, the word of God remained sure: and this was to guide.
So John: If that which ye have heard from the beginning abide in you, ye shall continue in the Father and in the Son. No developed and formed theology: but that which was from the beginning. He wrote this concerning those that seduced them. But further: In the seven churches, he that hath an ear is called upon to listen to what the Spirit said to the churches. Christ was judging them. They therefore could be no authority. He that had an ear for what Christ said was to listen to His judgment of them. Thus, so far from their word being an authority or rule, we are called on to listen to the word which judges their state: and whence can we date the ruin? Paul declares that after his decease wolves from without and perverse persons from within would arise; John that they were already in the last time. It was merely, alas! what had ever happened under man; with Noah, with Israel under the law, with the priesthood, with the Jewish royalty, with the Gentile; thus, what God had set up good, the first thing man did was to spoil and ruin it. But we have the additional testimony from Paul that evil men and seducers would wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived; the Scriptures, and what was taught by inspiration from the beginning being the only resource of "the man of God," and able to make him wise unto salvation. John tells us that the last time was already come: so Peter that the time was come that judgment should begin at the house of God. And mark this: when Romanists or ritualists tell us to listen to the church, they merely mean themselves, the clergy; they interpret the Scriptures, doling out as much as they think proper to give us, and cooked up as they please.
Paul, they would have us believe, did not know how to address the church; what was from the beginning is not what I am to hold fast! Let us see what ground there is for this apostate doctrine; this doctrine of Satan,-for such it is: he knows the power of the inspired word of God. To whom did the blessed Lord speak? To the multitude. To whom did the apostles speak and write? First to the world; but then in the Epistles-all save three short ones-to the assemblies, the mass of believers. If you choose to call them clergy, the clergy wrote to the mass of common believers. The church or mass, really never teaches. Those gifted, as sent, teach the assembly, but the Scriptures generally are addressed, always addressed, to the body of believers: God's word is addressed to them without any interpreters. They are God's own word to them, by which I should be called upon, if needed, to judge even apostles, with a curse pronounced upon them if they taught anything else.
The church never teaches. The teachers are to be judged by the word of God. Sad it is if that be needed, for gifts of teaching there are; but, if needed to be done, God has sent His word to the saints at large. He who comes between and intercepts the message meddles with God's rights, not merely with mine. If I own this title in the clergy, I am withdrawing myself from God's own direct title over me as His servant; but I cannot from my responsibility, for He has addressed His word directly to me. Man cannot withdraw himself from the consequences of his own moral state in reading it; that is true, nor is he meant to do so. If be comes presumptuously, he will reap the fruits of his presumption. If he comes meekly, " as new born babes desire the sincere milk of the word," he will reap the, fruits of God's grace. Those teachers who write " Bible-worshippers," and deny what they call verbal inspiration, may learn, at any rate the simple may, what the apostle teaches: " We" (the apostle himself and the inspired teachers) " have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is of God, that we might know the things which are freely given to us of God." There is revelation. " Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth." There is verbal inspiration. " The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness unto him, because they are spiritually discerned." There is the intelligence of the things taught in the word, as it is written; and it is the distinctive character of the time of grace: " They shall be all taught of God."
And, now, let us see how far the church is to be trusted,-the historical development. I affirm that the history of the baptized mass is the history of the greatest wickedness-crimes natural, ecclesiastical, and unnatural-that ever disgraced human nature, worse and more universal than among the heathen, bad as they were. Did our theologians ever read the letter of Nicolas Clemangis, rector of the University of Paris at the time of the great schism, the greatest man of his age, and his description of the state of morals? In the middle ages, so great was the violence and disorder.-one pope annulling as invalid all the ordinations of another whom he had driven out-that a book had to be written to apprise the people there were still sacraments,-unnatural crimes universal, especially among the clergy; and such a state of things in the papacy, that the great Roman Catholic historian, cardinal and Jesuit, Baronius, declares that for a century he cannot own the popes for legitimate, but only puts their names in for dates, set up as they were by the mistresses of the marquis of Tuscany, or by their mothers, mistresses of deceased popes. The pope got hold of a book written by an honest man, denouncing the state of things, and suppressed it, saying that it would be too scandalous, and that he would punish the most flagrant cases. And the gloss of the canon law on a decretal, speaking of degrading for licentiousness, declares that it cannot be for simple fornication, for then it would be universal. There is no such system of wickedness as the organic system preached up by ritualists. I challenge them, with their historical Christianity, to state honestly what history. states; nor, though more decent outwardly since the Reformation, is it really very much better now. This was the baptized organism that contained-(can I say the words?)-Christ's life!
Let us turn to an earlier date: Did our theologians ever read Cyprian de Pudentia, or Chrysostom's two treatises on the same subject? Here we go back to, say, 240 after Christ. But a century before: what do we find-that is, forty or fifty years after the death of the apostle John? Infamy under the form of asceticism. Do our theologians, for I do not much trust their acquaintance with history, know what subintroductae, or παρείσαχτοι, in full blow at that time were? So common that it had to be taken up by councils. I do not defile my pages with what was read in the churches then as holy practice.
And as to doctrine, I will give a specimen from one called an apostolic father, but who was really the brother of Pope Pius the First: " A man had a vineyard and set his servant to stake up the vines. The servant did so, but did more than he had been set to do-cleared the garden of weeds. The Lord of the vineyard consulted with his son and his friends what he should do with his faithful servant, and they agreed he should be made heir with the son. The servant was Christ, who was set to establish the clergy, but did a great deal more than God had set him to do-namely, cleared away our sins. The Holy Ghost is the Son, the angels the friends." Is not that the church maintaining and forming sound doctrine?
But our theologians will tell us, it is hunting up evil and finding some obscure individual, and the church cannot be answerable. It was read in the churches, though more in the east than in the west, is quoted by Irenaeus as Scripture, and treated by Origen as questionable, if it was not inspired. They tell us, as proof of the value of the church forming doctrine, that it was only after long struggle' that the formal truth as to Christ's person was established. His divinity at the council of Nicaea. But what does this mean? They do not mean to deny that the truth as to Christ's person is in Scripture. It means, therefore, that the church had lost the truth of Christ's person. And so it was. Scarcely one of the known teachers was sound on the deity of the Lord; and those who were, as Irenaeus, were unsound on other things. And Cyril of Alexandria, who set up the title of Mother of God, was a decided Eutychian, so called afterward in doctrine, justified himself by the authority of Athanasius-it seems to me, he was warranted in so doing. He was as turbulent a ruffian as ever lived, heading the mob at Alexandria to plunder and ruin, and drive out the Jews when Patriarch of Alexandria, and spending all the possessions of the church of Alexandria, which were immense, to bribe the courtiers and empress-sister of the emperor to banish and persecute Nestorius, in which he succeeded. He canonized the man who sought to murder the governor at Alexandria who put down his rioting. The Ecumenical Council at Ephesus was as great a scene of iniquity and open violence as occurs in history, so that the emperor sent troops and put the leaders in prison, from which Cyril escaped, and they bribed the court, Nestorius' patron having died. In the previous Council of Ephesus, the Condo Latronum, convened by the emperor, attended by the pope's legates, with every element of a general council, the bishops beat old Flavianus, Patriarch of Constantinople, in such a way that he died of it. It was quashed afterward through shame.
This was the primitive church; its organic progress to sanctify the world! They could not cure the baptized heathen (in life-contact, we are to believe, with Christ) by their baptism of getting drunk at the festivals (Memories, so called, at shrines of their relics) of the demigods: so the church allowed it, putting saints in the place of demigods; that at least they might get drunk in honor of saints instead of demons 1 The church, that is, the clergy, the interpreters of the Scriptures, did this. You will say, What proof is there of it? Augustine states it, who tried to put it down. The same state of things is mentioned in Paulinus of Nola; and Gregory Thaumaturgus left only seventeen heathen in his diocese by means of it: and it was part of the directions of Pope Gregory the First to another Augustine, sent to convert the Saxons. It is a curious fact that Sicily, which had never been converted from heathenism, went over, I may say in a body, to Christianity; and gave up their splendid temples for churches as soon as Mary was declared by the Fourth Council to be " the mother of God." God has preserved His testimony and truth in spite of the church, thus viewed: of what ritualists call the church. He cannot fail. These things were not exceptional, but the general state. But what were saints to do if they listened to the clergy as interpreters, when they turned Arian with the emperors-when, as Jerome says, the world awoke and found itself Arian? When even Hosius and the Pope Liberius gave way, were they to follow the clergy or the Scriptures? The Luciferians, a sect named by Jerome, had their name from one Lucifer, who would not go with the world when all the clergy turned Arians. Athanasius is justly held in honor as to this too; but what was the course of the whole body of the clergy? Have the clergy of the Church of Rome organically maintained the truth in the worship of the Virgin Mary, or in transubstantiation and the offering of the mass? Let us have it out plainly. Ought people under their jurisdiction to follow their interpretation, and acknowledge their authority? They are just as much clergy as Oxford or Mercersburg. They tell us that God has divided His attribute of Almightiness between Jesus and Mary;-almighty justice to Jesus, and almighty mercy to Mary. Are their parishioners to believe this? and, as the present pope has declared, that we must go to the heart of Jesus through the heart of Mary? Dr. Racy has exposed this.
Very likely Mercersburg does not believe these horrid doctrines. But why am I to trust them more than their adversaries; or why acknowledge their competency to interpret more than the pope's? Am I to believe in purgatory in Savoy, because the-clergy teach it; and cross the lake of Geneva, and hold that it is utterly false in the Canton de Vaud, because the clergy teach so there? Am I to hold transubstantiation as vital truth in France; and declare it idle fables and blasphemous deceits in England? Am I to hold that Christ is God in one parish in France, and deny it if I go into the next? for so I must if I listen to the clergy and their interpretation. Were not-though, thank God, there is a reaction-the clergy in France, Germany, Holland, as a body infidel, and still mostly are, or indifferent? It is all well to talk of the church, and hearing the church: but what church am I to hear? The body of the Reformed Church was, and in a very large and major part is (particularly the clergy), infidel. Is this the doctrine I am to receive?
In Geneva the State has abolished ordination entirely. In Neuchatel it has left every man to preach what he likes: and half the national church have left and set up for themselves. In all the principal cantons infidelity reigns among the clergy; the godly laity are getting tired of them and their nothingarianism. They have said to me in France, " But if we are Christians we must have some kind of Christ;" and then not so very strict either. In Paris Christianity was carried against avowed infidelity by twelve votes of more than 2600 voters in the Reformed Church. I do not doubt that the Lord is graciously acting, but it is not generally by the clergy but in spite of them.
It is vain to say things are becoming better. What became of souls if they listened or listen to the clergy when they are infidels or rationalists? When the clergy turned Arians with the emperors, were they or the word of God to be listened to? If Mercersburg or others teach false doctrine as to the person of Christ and the sacraments, am I to be saved by listening to them? Can they answer for my soul "in that day"? They insist on the peccability of Christ: we are therefore authorized in putting the case, (the Lord avert the blasphemy from every heart, that he did sin!) putting it as a supposition, for they affirm it to have been possible; " God was united forever to sinful man." Is it not enough to revolt and repel with horror every true soul? Say it, not to doctors, for God hides things from wise and prudent, but to a poor uninstructed saint: he will make short work with clergy interpretation. What simple majesty is in the statement! "The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee; therefore that holy thing that shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God." For these theologians, who pry into divine secrets and pretend to know the Son, whom none knows, but the Father, "the divine" (they are sometimes afraid to say what), "having taken sinful nature up, was gradually victorious over it, purifying it." It was the power of the Highest overshadowing the Virgin Mary for Scripture: for the interpreters, it was " united in the womb to sin in the fetus, and purifying the nature." (Can more offensive folly, of which there is not a word in Scripture, be conceived?
I am ashamed to speak of it, but it must be spoken to put these pretentious men in the true light): and that, for them, is "redemption"!
But we have the faith of the church in the creeds: The Apostles' Creed, for instance, universally recommended in all ages by the church. Now this is a deception; they know its history well, they will not venture to speak of the ancient fable, for fables were plentiful in and purifying the nature Lucius with uncertain name, a coiner of false documents), that each apostle came forward to give one article. The Apostles Creed is not, as we have it, as ancient as the Nicene Creed. Some analogous formulary was gradually established in each diocese; the Roman creed was pretty much the same as what we have, save some important articles. But what we have, save these, is first given by Ruffinus (published in Fell's Cyprian) in the fourth or fifth century; but there was no descent to hell in it, and, what is more important, no procession of the Holy Ghost from the Son. This was added, it is said, from Spain, when the Visigoths gave up Arianism, and thence passed into. Gaul; but this was quite late, and Leo put up the creed in silver tablets at Rome that nothing might be added, the Council of Ephesus having forbidden any additions. This article, added none knows how, is rejected by the whole Greek Church, and is the avowed cause of division. I say avowed, for it is pretty clear it was ambition and rivalry. I am not insisting on rejecting nor on receiving it; but what if true must be of first-rate importance in the creed has divided the professing church, instead of having a common faith by it.
But these professors, as one of them says, leave the poor Greek Church out in the cold. In the recent conferences of the archbishop of Syra with the English prelates, this article could not be got over, and, then, Dr. Pusey, it is said, declared they were farther off than ever from union. A priest or patriarch in Turkey did let in an English clergyman to communion, but was severely taken to task by the ecclesiastical authority for it. I am not sure, but I rather think, he was excommunicated.
But let us take the Apostles' Creed as it stands. There is not a trace in it that Christ is God; an Arian, nay, a Unitarian, could sign it as well as, nay, better than, one who held the fundamental truth of the trinity of persons in the unity of the Godhead. Is not this rather serious if it is to be the norm of faith? The Father is God and Almighty, and the Son and Holy Ghost spoken of apart with no hint of divinity! Creation is attributed to the Father exclusively; all that is said of Jesus Christ is referable to what He was when become man.
Now Scripture leaves no shadow of doubt on such subjects.
" The Word was with God, and was God.". He became man: " The Word was made flesh." He never became (but in the beginning was) God. When all that has a beginning began, He was; and was a distinct person. As far as the creed was the expression of early faith (for it was the creed of Aquilina, and We may practically say, of Rome), the church had so lost the faith-at least its teachers the clergy-that it required the council at Nice, with the emperor presiding and keeping order among the disputing bishops, to get it on the ground of the divinity of the Lord; and larger assemblies unsettled it again, and it took council upon council to set things straight. Nor, mark, are the great branches of the baptized organism agreed which councils are general, which not. Augustine declares them to be no final rule; one correcting the other by clearer light.
I know not that I have more to add. Many errors, and important ones, could be noticed, and ignorance of Scripture, flowing from following men's thoughts and system. Thus, we are told, that the Holy Ghost after He came is not called the Spirit of the Father or of the Son. He is both: and as far as I can trust my recollection, only after His coming. But I notice this only to show the rashness of assertion. Their doctrine is false as to justification by faith; it is for them inherent or infused, though professedly not exactly Romish doctrine.
But my only object was the ritualism, the person of the Lord, and the church, running into this main point: Is redemption by incarnation, or by the death of Christ? They say, formally, by incarnation (the Scriptures, as formally, by the blood of Christ); and all their system hangs on -this. As to the clergy, it is Quot homines, tot sententiae, unless we go to Rome, who treat their doctors as outside the church altogether. Take even their friends, the English Puseyites (from whom our Mercersburg doctors declare they borrow their sacraments and clerical system, not from Germany,-alas I they have no bishops, and, if their friends are to be believed, no organic succession at all, no divine channels of grace whatever: happily in Romanism and Anglicanism the clergy are not necessary to baptism,-a midwife can do it, so they may be considered to have life-contact after all!) their Christianity is just saved I As to an interpreting clergy, they are absolutely without any. A goodly system this to secure the truth for the simple I Which am I to believe? Happily I am content with what John, and Paul, and Peter, and the blessed Lord Himself, taught "FROM THE BEGINNING."
"LET THAT THEREFORE ABIDE IN YOU, WHICH YE HAVE HEARD FROM THE BEGINNING. IF THAT WHICH YE HAVE HEARD FROM THE BEGINNING SHALL REMAIN IN YOU, YE ALSO SHALL CONTINUE IN THE SON, AND IN THE FATHER. AND THIS IS THE PROMISE THAT HE HATH PROMISED US, EVEN ETERNAL LIFE. THESE THINGS HAVE I WRITTEN UNTO YOU CONCERNING THEM THAT SEDUCE YOU. BUT THE ANOINTING WHICH YE HAVE RECEIVED OF HIM ABIDETH IN YOU, AND YE NEED NOT THAT ANY MAN TEACH YOU: BUT AS THE SAME ANOINTING TEACHETH YOU OF ALL THINGS, AND IS TRUTH, AND IS NO LIE, AND EVEN AS IT HATH TAUGHT YOU, YE SHALL ABIDE IN HIM. AND NOW, LITTLE CHILDREN, ABIDE IN HIM; THAT, WHEN. HE SHALL APPEAR, WE MAY HAVE CONFIDENCE, AND NOT BE ASHAMED BEFORE HIM AT HIS COMING." (1 John 2:24-28.)

The Church and Its Privileges*

THINGS, truths, not words, are my objects. But I had supposed that Kuriake (Κυριαχὴ) was the source of Kirche in German, Kirk and Church. (" Kyroike" I never heard of. It may be all right.) Some philologists now say that this is all wrong, and that kirk or church comes from the Saxon. I can only say
I really do not know, nor have at this moment the means of ascertaining: if, indeed, it be ascertainable with any certainty. But the truth is, I have a great dislike of the word " church," because no man knows what it means.
What does it mean? Mr. G.'s congregation might build him a new church. Then it means a building. Or Mr. S. may be a member of Mr. G.'s church. Then it means an assembly under the presidency of Mr. G. In England, " he is going into the church," means, he is going to become a clergyman: he is gone to church, means the public service or worship: gone to the church, means the building again.
The Roman Catholic Church, and the Greek Church, are large bodies of persons professing Christianity, associated under these designations. So of Presbyterians, and Covenanters, Lutherans, Episcopalians. If you press the matter, the church is the teaching authoritative part of it. This is so even among Protestants. The Thirty-nine Articles of England tell us the church can decree rites and ceremonies, and has authority in matters of faith. So that we have to know what a person means by " the church" before we can reply to a question as to it.
But I will just mention a little bit of history which refers to this, and why it is so current a word. When James 1, or, as we should say with Scottish Covenanters, James VI., had the Bible translated, the translation in popular use was the Geneva one made by the refugees in Queen Mary's time. This always used the word " congregation." Now James had had a long experience, or knowledge at least, of his mother's conflicts with John Knox, and was not very fond of Scottish principles embodied afterward in the Covenant, and used to say, " No bishop no king." He gave strict orders to have the word " church" everywhere, and not " congregation." Hence the prevalence of a word in the English Translation of the New Testament which has really no fixed meaning.
Say " assembly," which is the meaning of ὲχχλησία (ecclesia), and all ambiguity disappears. Ecclesia was the assembly of those who in the small Grecian states were citizens, and so had right to vote; and then it was applied to analogous bodies or meetings. We all know what an assembly means. Only now we have to do with God's assembly. For example, " Take with thee one or two more," etc.; " if not, tell it to the church." To whom is it to be told? Well, the minister, or perhaps the presbytery! With the Roman Catholic, " if he will not hear the church" assumes awful proportions.
Now say, as it really is, the assembly, and how simple all is. If wronged, go yourself first alone; if in vain, take one or two others; if still in vain, matters being ascertained, then "tell it to the assembly." For the present mixed state of things this may seem inconvenient: but the sense of the words is plain enough.
Now apply this to Acts 7, " This is he that was with the assembly in the wilderness." Can anything be simpler? Israel was a vast assembly in the wilderness, and assembled themselves at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. For though a different word in Hebrew, the tabernacle got its name from its being the place of meeting. But then, all possible reference to the church, in the. Christian sense, disappears. Who denies that the six hundred thousand men who came constantly to the entrance of the court were an assembly? There were three words used for it, Kahal, as is stated by the writer, from Kahal the verb to call together, Moeed and Heeda or Gneedah, the two last from Yaad, to appoint a place or time of meeting. Hence the tabernacle was called Ohel Moeed, the tent or tabernacle of the congregation.
Israel was a great assembly or congregation, as none can dispute, but which proves simply nothing as to its being what God's assembly is, according to the word, now. It is Ecclesia, an assembly, in Acts 7, and the word being simply an assembled multitude, says just no more than that. 'The identical word is used when it is said, Acts 19, "having so said, he (the town clerk) dismissed the assembly." Put " the church " there and what nice sense you will have!
I quite understand it will be said, " Yes, but they were God's assembly in the wilderness." Admitted; but the whole question remains; that is-Were God's assembly then, and God's assembly now, constituted on the same principles, on the same basis? There was no question then of conversion, or faith, or anything of the kind, or even profession. They were, as Scripture expresses it, of the fountain of Jacob, descendants of Israel 'according to the flesh, and under condition of being circumcised the eighth day (which by the by none of those born in the wilderness were at that time). That assembly was a nation.
God's assembly now is not. The fact of being an assembly, or the word, proves nothing; the whole question remains:-Are the Israelitish nation, and God's assembly called by grace, the same thing, or assembled on the same principles?
This writer makes some enormous statements.: First, "The church of. Pentecost was Israel." Why, the Jews had openly rejected the Lord, and Peter in his sermon says to those who had ears to hear, " Save yourselves from this untoward generation," and the Lord Himself had said, " Behold your house is left unto you desolate; for I say unto you, ye shall not see Me henceforth until ye say, Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord." They were a judicially rejected people, though not forever: and they are so to this day. They were "men of Israel:" but the assertion, inconceivable as it is, only shows how far a false principle can carry any one. God did not say in Joel " He would give the great outpouring of His Spirit to Israel." He said He would pour out His Spirit on all flesh. In patience with Israel He dealt with them, and began at Jerusalem: but it was the Holy Ghost being given to Cornelius that opened fully Peter's eyes, and the eyes of the Jewish Christians.
But let us enter a little more into the heart of the matter. This writer says of Israel, " ' To them were committed the oracles of God:' To them pertained the adoption, glory, covenant, giving of the law, service, and the promises' (Rom. 9:4). Nothing more can be said of the church now." Now here is the nucleus, the heart of the question: not the introduction of Old Testament saints into church privileges (unscriptural as that is), but reducing God's assembly now to the measure of Jewish privileges. The former might, alone, be treated as a mistake; the latter deprives God's assembly of its true divine standing, and that is what makes it of moment. The law was given by Moses: grace and truth came (i7ivgro) by Jesus Christ.
Let us see what Scripture says on the matter. In the tabernacle there was a veil, behind which God sat between the cherubim; the Holy Ghost thus signifying that the way into the holiest was not yet made manifest, while as yet the first tabernacle had its standing. Now, by Christ's death the veil is rent from top to bottom; and we have boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, which He bath consecrated for us through the veil, that is to say, His flesh. We can walk, and are to walk in the light, as God is in the light. Is this "nothing more" to this writer? I will not insist on God's righteousness being declared now (the righteousness of God being revealed, not prophesied of) because I desire to take what is most positive and on the very surface of Scripture. See Gal. 4 "Now, I say, the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a slave, though he be lord of all; but is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father; even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the rudiments of the world. But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons; and because ye are sons, God bath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Wherefore, thou art no more a slave, but a son." Is it " nothing more" to be brought to be sons of God by known and accomplished redemption, and know it; to live in the relationship, instead even of an heir differing nothing from a slave?
Will the writer allow me to ask him, Were the Jews under the first covenant, or the second, in their relationship with God? Are we under that first covenant? But more, we have the difference clearly brought out in Heb. 10:9, " He taketh away the first that He may establish the second." It will be said that these were ceremonies; but what ceremonies? The priesthood is changed; is that merely a ceremony, a better hope by which we draw nigh to God. And see the difference: the sacrifices could not make the corners thereto perfect as pertaining to the conscience. There was a remembrance of sins every year; now, we are perfected forever who are sanctified; so that Christ, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in the heavens. He is seated there, because all is done, till His enemies are made His footstool: and our sins and iniquities are remembered no more. The worshippers once purged are so in such sort that they should have " no more conscience of sins," instead of a remembrance of them every year. We have eternal redemption, a purged conscience, because the sins are purged once for all; and boldness to enter into the Holiest: " Giving thanks to the Father, who bath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light" (Col. 1: 12): Having the knowledge of salvation given to His people by the remission of their sins. Is all this " nothing more" than Israel had?
Take what is said by the Lord, and this will lead us to the question of the Holy Ghost. Than John Baptist no greater prophet had ever arisen, nor of those born of woman any one greater; "but the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he." Many kings, prophets, and righteous men, had desired to see the things which the disciples saw, and had not seen them; but " blessed," said the Lord, " are your eyes, for they see." They were more blessed than their kings and prophets-they had Messiah with them. Yet so great was the privilege and advantage of having the Holy Ghost, that it was " expedient" that Christ should leave them; for, if He did not, the Comforter would not come; but, if He went away, He would send Him. What a thing to lose, Christ's personal presence in grace 1 Yet so great was to be the effect of the coming of the Holy Spirit, that it was better He should go. Yet they would persuade us that He had been there all the time of the Old Testament! See 1 Peter 1. They searched their own prophecies and found they did not minister to themselves but to us the things now reported
by the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven. Was the promise to pour out the Spirit, or His presence nothing"? Clearly it was not anything if He was there all the time as when poured out.
And now mark the foundation of this immense truth. God never dwelt with Adam innocent, nor with Abraham or others; but as soon as even an external redemption was accomplished, we read "They shall know (Ex. 29) that I am the Lord their God, that brought them out of the land of Egypt that I may dwell among them:" and the Shechinah of glory came down and sat between the cherubim, and led them in the wilderness. So it was, when an eternal and full redemption had been accomplished, and man (though much more than a man) sat down in virtue of it at the right hand of God, that the Holy Ghost came down to dwell in God's people individually and collectively.
We must not confound between the divine action of the Holy Ghost and His coming in person to make His abode with us. I think it will be found in Scripture that all direct action of God from the creation is by the Holy Ghost. Even Christ could say, " If I, by the Holy Ghost, cast out devils." At any rate, He moved on the face of the waters. By His Spirit God garnished the heavens. He inspired the prophets, and wrought all through the divine history; but that was not His personal coming. So the Son created all things; but He did not come until the incarnation: " I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world; again, I leave the world and go to the Father" (John 16:28). So speaks Christ of the Holy Ghost: " If I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send Him unto you; and when He is come," etc. (John 16:7,8). And this was so distinct a thing that it is called " the Holy Ghost," without saying came, or given, or anything else. Thus, John 7:39, "For the Holy Ghost was not yet" (given, is added, it is not in the text), "because that Jesus was not yet glorified." So, the disciples baptized by John,. In Acts 19:2, said, " We have not so much as heard whether the Holy Ghost is."
All Jews knew there was a Holy Ghost; but this was His promised presence: and this is easily understood as to John's disciples, because he had spoken of Christ's work as twofold: He was the Lamb of God; and He it is that baptizeth with the Holy Ghost. It was the second great part of His work baptizing with the Holy Ghost; and it could not be done till He was glorified. So He tells His disciples after His resurrection, " Ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence." He Himself was anointed and sealed with the Holy Ghost when He stood, the first man fully, perfectly, acceptable to God, who had ever existed since evil entered,-perfect in Himself. "God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power" (Acts 10:38).
And what is the effect of the Holy Ghost's dwelling in us? The love of God shed abroad in the heart by the Holy Ghost given to us (Rom. 5) We know that we are in Christ and Christ is in us (John 14) We know that we are sons and cry Abba, Father, the Spirit bearing witness with our spirit (Rom. 8) He takes of the things of Christ, the glorified man on high, and shows them to us (John 16) Our bodies are temples of the Holy Ghost which we have of God (1 Cor. 6): so that God dwells in us and we in Him, and we know it by the Holy Ghost given to us (1 John 4:13). What eye bath not seen, nor ear heard, nor bath entered into the heart of man, God hectic revealed unto us by His Spirit (1 Cor. 2) Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty (2 Cor. 3): and Christ living thus in us, the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit life because of righteousness (Rom. 8) Man at the right hand of God in righteousness, and the Holy Ghost dwelling in the believer as the consequence of it, characterize Christianity.
All this is lost by this system [which tells us "that the visible church is identical under both dispensations "]. What made it expedient for Christ to leave His disciples, we are told, is all the same as what they had before He came! The anointing of the Holy Ghost is nothing "!
Besides, "he that is joined to the Lord is one Spirit," and this leads to the corporate difference. Till Christ ascended up on high, there was no Man at the right hand of God, no one to whom the believer could, as a present fact, be united; and, consequently, as we have seen, no Holy Ghost come down to unite him to Him. But Christ ascended up on high, a Man, in righteousness, and the Holy Ghost consequently came down: not to the world but to believers. Let us hold fast this great truth which is the essence of Christianity, as the cross and God's love are the foundation of it. The Head being on high, we are quickened together with Him, according to the power with which God wrought in raising Him from the dead and setting Him there; and raised us up, Jews and Gentiles together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ: (not with Him yet, Eph. 1:19-23;2. 1-7). Neither part of this was true before Christ was glorified. There was no such glorified Man; no Holy Ghost come down from heaven. On this, Scripture is as clear as possibly can be. There was the Son of God who could quicken; but no raised glorified Man, whose going to the Father was the testimony of God's righteousness; nor the Holy Ghost come down, the divine witness of it. We are members of His body: He has given Him, as so exalted, to be head over all things to the church which is His body. Thus, "by one Spirit we are all baptized into one body," Jews or Greeks. Israel had lost his place as such. There was no difference now. By the cross the middle wall of partition was broken down, and of twain one new man to be made; and both reconciled to God in one body by the cross (Eph. 2) Now the duty and essence of Judaism was the keeping of the wall up; Christianity as a system on earth is founded on its being broken down. Were the Gentiles in the church brought into the Jewish state as is alleged? No, He makes of twain one new man and reconciles both, and came and preached peace to those afar off and those nigh; for neither of them had it. The apostles and prophets (the prophets are the prophets of the New Testament, see Eph. 3:5) were the foundation of a new edifice, "a habitation of God through the Spirit." This had never been promised, never revealed at all, could not have been. To say there was no difference between Jew and Gentile would have destroyed Judaism at one stroke. It was not revealed at all (Eph. 3:4-11; Col. 1:26; Rom. 16:25,26. In 26th verse it is not "the scriptures of the prophets; " but now is made manifest by prophetic scriptures, γραφῶν προφητιχῶν.
But the grand point is the coming of the Holy Ghost consequent on the exaltation of Christ as man in righteousness to the right hand of God. So when Christ says, "I will build my church" (on the revelation made by the Father to Peter), what was the meaning of that if He had been building it all the time, from Abel onwards? The church, then, the body of Christ, is formed by the baptism of the Holy Ghost, consequent on the exaltation of Christ to the right hand of God (1 Cor. 12:12,13). The Holy Ghost as so come " was not yet," when Christ was not glorified; and this " baptism," as is declared in Acts 1, took place a few days after, that is, on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2)
Rom. 11 has nothing to do with the church, " the body of Christ." It is the olive tree of promise (and the church was never promised even); and it is accompanied with a revelation that, when the Jews are grafted in again, the Gentile branches would be broken off. There were promises and prophecies at any rate, which apply to Gentiles as, "Rejoice, ye Gentiles, with His people; " but if Israel be God's people, the church cannot exist with it; for there (that is, in the church) there is no difference of Jew and Gentile, and blindness in part is happened unto Israel till the fullness of the Gentiles be come in. They are enemies as touching the gospel; and "the casting away of them is the reconciling of the world." The church is "the body of Christ" formed by the Holy Ghost on earth, while Christ sits on the right hand of God.
I should have many things to note if I merely took up the article. "House of the Lord," or any application of it to the place where the people meet, is wholly without it foundation in Scripture. "The church of the wilderness " is also unscriptural. " The kingdom of heaven " is not the church at all. It is really too bad to say, " the apostles do not say a word about a new organization." " There is a disannulling of the commandment going before for the weakness and unprofitableness thereof." Did not Paul organize the church? Were the priests and Levites, priests and Levites of the Christian church?
There would be another difficulty which has not been noticed at all:-That before exodus there was no assembly of any kind at all. Individual saints, Enochs and Noahs and Abrahams there were, but there was no assembly; but I do not go beyond what is on the surface of the article.
What I press is this, that the Holy Ghost is come; and that, when He came, the baptism, by which the saints were made one body, took place; the assembly is the body of Christ and the dwelling place of the Holy Ghost on earth: and it never existed before that baptism, and could not; for the Head did not exist; nor was the Holy Ghost, in consequence, descended to unite men to Him so as to form His body.
He gave Himself not for that nation only, but to gather together in one the children of God which were scattered abroad.

The Bearing of 1 Peter 2:24

PET 2: 24{THE true force of 1 Peter 2:24 has been called in question by those who seek not only to make Christ's life vicarious, but His sufferings during the time of His active service penal. The thought that all the sufferings of that Blessed One have infinite value, and that they were all for us, every Christian heart would close in with adoringly. There may be obscurity of mind connected with it; but the heart is right. But when intellectual proofs are attempted to be given to sustain unsound doctrine on this point, so as to undermine the true character and value of atonement, and to cast a cloud on divine righteousness, it is desirable then to maintain the truth. I do not hesitate to say that those who speak of the appropriation of Christ's living righteousness to us for righteousness, and hold the sufferings of His active service to have been penal and vicarious, have in no case a full, clear, and scriptural gospel. I am sure many, who from the teaching they have had hold it, are as far as my own heart could desire from the wish to weaken the truth of atonement and the value of Christ's blood-shedding, without which there is no remission. They have not seen the deep evil lying at the root of a doctrine which speaks of vicarious sufferings, and bearing of sins to which no remission is attached. I am quite ready to believe that the most violent accusers of the doctrine which looked to the sufferings of Christ upon the cross as the alone atonement. and propitiation for sin do not wish to enfeeble its value. But we may inquire into the justness of all views which we do not judge to be scriptural, and press too with confidence what we find in Scripture.
I do not believe in the penal and vicarious character of Christ's sufferings during His active service, nor do I believe in the appropriation of His legal righteousness to me as failing in legal righteousness myself. I am satisfied that those who hold it have not a full, true, scriptural gospel; by some it is used for the maintenance of what is horribly derogatory to Christ. I have known many valued and beloved saints who hold that Christ, under the law, satisfied, by His active fulfillment of it, for our daily failure under it. I believe it to be a very serious mistake, though I may value them as His beloved people still. I believe in His obedience to the law; I believe that all His moral perfectness; completed in death, was available to me as that in which He was personally agreeable to God, and a Lamb without spot and blemish. But these are not the appropriation to me of legal righteousness. But I am not now purposing to go over all this ground; I merely maintain the ground on which I stand, and the doctrine which I hold as scriptural, and as of immense importance to the church just now. I would do it meekly, patiently, that souls may be delivered from error and bondage into the liberty of the truth of God, which is the only real power of godliness; but I would do it firmly and constantly.
In the attempt to maintain the doctrine of Christ's bearing sins all His life, the translation of the text I refer to has been called in question. I am satisfied that it is perfectly correct. As an element in this question, I would now examine it. The English version is, " Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree." A simple person would surely, in reading Peter, refer to His sufferings in death. Thus, in chapter 3. I read: "For Christ also bath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit." No one denies that Christ suffered, during His life, sufferings which found their perfection in His death; besides the wrath-bearing character of it; for He was obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
But the question is, " Was there sin-bearing during His active service, or was He kept up as the Lamb to bear sin?" It turns on the word " bear," ἀνήνεγχε. It is alleged that if it meant " bare," it must be ὑπήνεγχε or ἐβάστασε or ἔλαβε. All this is a mistake. A sacrificial word is, I do not doubt, purposely used; but ἀναφέρω, means " to bear, or undergo," probably because sacrificial victims, which were offered up, were supposed to bear sins: at any rate, it does mean " to bear, undergo, sustain." The truth is, determining the meaning of a word by etymology, in a cultivated language, is the most absurd thing possible. It is interesting as philological research; but, as determining the usus loquendi, it is ridiculous. I might say "bell-fire" must mean "covering sins" (for it is the same word as "to heal," used also provincially for roofing)-for the same reason, hence, that the fire of hell was purgatorial or remissory! It did originally mean a covered place, hades, and hence, gradually, everlasting punishment. 'Aναφέρω does mean to offer in sacrifice: it means " to recreate oneself, to remember, to cough up, to return, to cast the sin on another, to weigh or consider," etc. The question is, does it mean to bear, to undergo the pain and burden of? and, when used sacrificially, can it be separated from the altar of sacrifice? I say it does mean " to bear, to undergo the pain and burden of anything;" and, when used in connection with sacrifice, it cannot be separated from actual offering up to God.
First, it means "to bear or undergo." I must turn to the dictionaries for this, and the passages in which it is used. They leave no sort of question. It is only systematizing, and not the facts in the Greek language, which can lead any one to deny it. I turn to H. Stephanus. I find ἀναφέρειν, ferre, perferre, pati, ut Christus dicitur, ἀνενεγχεὶν peccata nostra. (1 Peter 2:24; Heb. 9:21.) Citatur e Thucydide ἀναφέριν χιν δ΄θνος, quod durum sit reddere, Ferre pericula: potiusque verti debeat, Subire pericuia
(better " to undergo," that is, than " to bear "). The general sense of " undergoing the burden and pain of " is evident; and that is our point here. There is a reference in the beginning of the article to Aristides (I suppose, Ælius Αristides, the rhetorician), which I cannot verify. So Pape, auf sich, nehmen, ertragen, " to take on oneself; " " to bear " χινδύνους, Thucydides; φθόνυς χαἰ διαβόλους χαὶ πόλεμον, that is, "envy, 'calumny, war," Polybius and Dionysius of Halicarnassus.. He adds, New Testament. Liddell and. Scott give " to uphold, to take on one," Latin sustinere (quoting Æschylus (ἄχθον) and Thucydides). It is thus perfectly certain that the word Means " to bear the burden of anything, to undergo." The etymological sense of " to bring up or back" is a mere absurdity here.
We have now to examine the scriptural use of it in connection with sacrifice, and in particular the passage in Peter. 'Aνήνεγχε is a sacrificial word. It is used here (if we are to take it as it usually is taken, as referring to Isa. 53:12) for נׇשׇׁא. nasa, which means "to lift up, to bear, to forgive," and here confessedly "to bear." It is alleged-for I have considered diligently what is alleged against it-that it cannot mean "to bear passively with" (עַל), as would be the case with ἀνήνεγχε ἑπὶ τό. This is a mistake. Aaron was to bear the names of the children upon (עַל), his heart (Ex. 28:29). So with the judgment in verse 30.
It is said that Isa. 53:4 is translated ἔλαβε by divine inspiration, and hence it could not be ἀλαβε, in verse 12. But this proves, if anything (for the word may be translated differently in different places according to the sense, but if it be. the Spirit's purpose to make the difference here, it proves this), that He would not use a sacrificial vicarious word in verse 4, but would in verse 12 (that is, that the "bearing, in verse 4, was not sacrificial, but is in verse 12); for Hebrews 9: 28, that Christ was once offered εἱς τὸ πολλῶιν ἁμαρτίαςare the very words of Isa. 53:12. So that, if this is of any value, we have not an inference that it cannot be used in one place because it is not in another; and that Peter, if he had quoted it, would have used another word for " nasa" in verse 12, because Matthew did in verse 4 (an argument, when said to be from inspiration, which I decline characterizing), but a direct proof that inspiration will not use a vicarious sacrificial word as to Christ's living sympathies and sorrows; but that it will and does use it when it speaks of bearing sins when offered up to God.
And now, leaving argument, which I am glad to do, what is the scriptural use of ἀναφέρω, in connection with sins and sacrifices, with or without ἐπὶ τό? The following instances will show:
Num. 14:33, χαὶ ἀνοίσουσι τὴν πορνείαν ὑμὼν. The use of it in this passage is the more noticeable: save in Lev. 20:19, the word always used for bearing the consequence of our own or a father's sin (and under the old covenant this is the same thing) is λαμβάνω, in the Septuagint. In Lev. 20:19, it is ἀποίσουται. In Ex. 28:29, λήψεται τὰ ὀνόματα ἐπὶ τὸ λογεῖον; and for the same words in verse 30,it is χαι οἴσει τὰς χρίσεις επὶ τοῦ Indeed, the argument as to λαμβάνω may justly be carried much farther, for λαμβάνω, is regularly used for bearing the fruit of one's sin, bringing sin on oneself in its consequences. It is not bearing it vicariously, but as a consequence on oneself. The only apparent exceptions that I am aware of, and they are only apparent, are Lev. 16:22, the scapegoat; and Ezek. 4:4,5,6. But the first isλήψεται εἰς γῆν ἄβατον, " He shall carry them into a land not inhabited," and in the case of Ezekiel, it was clearly not(שׇׂ) vicarious, but representative, and the same as the ordinary case. In a word, άμαρτίαν λαμβάνειν is not used for vicarious bearing, but bearing the consequence of one's own fault, coming under the effect of it oneself, poenas lucre.
But what is important is to see the actual use of ἀναφέρω, when used with sacrifice. Num. 14:33, and Isa. 53:11, are plain proofs that it is used for bearing sins penally. But now, as to sacrifice. The reader must bear in mind that the act of having the sin on the victim is not in itself the expiation. That puts the victim in the answering place. For the other, death and the judicial action of God must come in to put it away. It must be slain and offered on the altar-as it is said, "by means of death." Christ had to take our sins on Him, and therefore to die-give His life a ransom for many. Every one, therefore, believes He had taken them on Him before He gave up the ghost. The question is, did He take them on Him in order to suffer on the cross, and suffer the penal judgment of them there; as the victim was brought up to the altar, then the sins confessed on his head, and then the victim itself, thus made sin, slain and burnt? Or was Christ born into this penal state, suffering it before He actually gave Himself up to be offered on the cross? Was He under the penal consequences of sin in the sufferings of His active service-was that penally from God? or in the sufferings of the cup He took to drink upon the cross from God? I believe the latter-that it was after the victim was presented as an offering to the altar (in Christ's case we must say presented Himself as a spotless victim to the cross) that the penal sufferings for sins were on Him, because our sins were on Him; and that it is to this bearing of sins alone that the passage in Peter applies. Christ offered Himself without spot to God. Jehovah laid then the iniquity upon Him. He who knew no sin was then made sin. Did the Lord lay the iniquity upon Him before He offered Himself without spot, a proved spotless lamb? One who knew no sin was made sin when He had bowed to His Father's will to drink that cup.
Offering has, in Scripture, a double character. It is used for presenting the victim, or indeed any offering, הֵביא, הִקְרִיב, heevi or hikriv," to cause to come nigh;" but ἀναφέρω ̬͑πὶ is not used for this, though in grammar I know not why it should not be. It is for hard causes in judgment in Deut. 1:17, ἀνοίσετε αὐτὸ ἐπ ἐμέ,"Ye shall bring it to me," but not for offering that I can find. If the reader takes Lev.1, he will find for these words προσφέρειν or προσάγειν, to bring up. This was the presenting the offering which was to be a victim. But as soon as the victim, or part of it, is spoken of as burnt on the altar (Lev. 3:5), then it is. ἀνιίσουσιν αὐτὰ ἐπὶ τὸ θυσιαστήριον So in verse 9, the general idea of offering is προσοίσουσι, hikcriv, and in verse 11, the burning of it on the altar ἀνοίσουσιν ἐπὶ τό. And this is the regular use of it in Lev., and elsewhere, as Ex. 29:18,25; 30: 20. Lev. 2:16; 3: 16; 4: 10, 19, 26, 31; 6: 15, 35; 7: 21; 8: 16, 20, 21, 27; 9: 10, 19; 16: 25; 17: 6. Num. 5:26; 18: 17. This last hast the same force, but there is not επὶ τὸ θυσιαστήριον.That is, ἀναφέρω πὶ τό is the technical expression for consumption or offering up to God by fire, when on the altar, in contrast with bringing up to the altar. When ἐπὶ τό is not used, it has practically the same force when used of offerings-that is, offering to God; but ἀναφέρεν ἐπὶ τό has the proper peculiar force of bearing them as a victim on the altar, under the consuming fire of God, not of bringing up to. It answers to הִקְמִֽיר, hiktir not to hikriv. It is impossible that the use of language can be made plainer by the facts of that use.
There is another word for which it is used, which confirms this, עׇלׇה, hala (Gen. 8:20; 22: 2: so Ex. 24:5; Lev. 14: 19, 20); where the reader will remark, comparing verse 13, that in both cases, of the sin r trespass offering and the burnt-offering, they are killed before they are offered in this sense of the word. In Christ both went together; He died on the cross. But it is of importance to remark it here, because it shows that hala, as well as hiktir, is not bearing the sins up to the altar, but the being offered (in consuming fire) on the altar to God. The word is used in some passages generally as a burnt-offering, an offering made by fire, the sense being assumed to be known; but this shows the strict sense is, the ascending up to God as a sweet savor under the proving and consuming fire, not the bringing up sin to the altar. And this is so true that, as these burnt-offerings were of a sweet savor, so no offering not made
by fire was a sweet savor. Compare Lev. 2:9 and 12, determining the use of this word in the most positive way. They were to bring it up (חַּקְרׅיבוּ takriuoo) as an offering, but they were not to offer it (יַֽעְַלוּ yahaloo) as a sweet savor, very justly as to the sense translated " burnt " in the English. It was not to be made to ascend as a sweet savor-that is, to be burnt and mount up to God as such.
The general use may be seen in Num. 28:2 and Deut. 12:13,14; chapter 27: 6 is a proof that the notion of ἐπὶ τό, i.e.,ἐπί with an accusative (see below) is not so absolute, but proves that ἀνοίσει, in any case, does not mean necessarily bringing up to, for here it is used with the genitive. Judg. 13:19, again, shows distinctly what ἀναφέρω ἐπὶ τό means (here ἐπἰτήν, because it was a rock); for it is added, "For it came to pass, that when the flame went up," בַּֽעְַלו֗ח behaaloth, " from off" the altar. The victim was offered on the rock, and in the going up of the flame. That was what hala refers to, not the bringing up to the altar.
Additional cases will be found in Kings and Chronicles, David's and Solomon's offerings; but it is only repeating similar cases, which confirm, but are not needed to prove, the point. The words for which ἀναφέρειν ἐπὶ τὸ are used (namely, burning or causing to ascend on the altar), and the uniform use of them, prove distinctly that the force of the word is the bearing under consuming fire on the altar, and not bringing sins up to it. I may quote another proof, strongly confirming the use of this word in 2 Chron. 29:27. Verse 24, the victim was killed; verse 27, Hezekiah commands it to be offered,ἀνενεγχεῖν ἐπί τὸ θυσιαστήριον. I add, on this occasion, it is never used for bringing or bearing sins up to the altar, it is used for bringing victims to the house; but this I quote because there it is not ἐπί. The sins were not yet upon them; they were the spotless victims that were to become sin-bearers, and sweet savors of offerings made by fire.
‘Αναφέρειν ἐπὶ τὸ θυσιαστήριον is never used for bringing or bearing sins up to the altar; what it is used for has been fully shown. But the supposition that ἐπί with an accusative means actively bringing up to, and then rest, is a mistake. There may be grammatically the idea by implication that that which is
ἐπὶ τό is not always and naturally there; but as a matter of fact, it does mean resting on a place or thing at the time spoken of. Thus, Matt. 13:2, "All the multitude stood" ἐπὶ τὸν αἰγιαλόν. So Matt. 19:28, "Ye shall sit on twelve thrones," ἐπὶ δώδεχα θρόνους. Acts 10:17; 9:11. ἐπὲστησαν ἐπὶ τὸν πυλῶνα, ἐπὶ τὴν οἰχἱαν. Winer's " Grammatik " (section 583) may be seen for this use and the use of ἐπὶ with a genitive for motion. See a singular example in Lev. 3:5, the pieces of the peace-offering on the burnt-offering,ἐπὶ τά- on the wood, ἐπὶ τά-on the fire, ἐπὶ τοῦ This may be from the fire being always there belonging to the altar, whereas the wood was brought there: any will be understood then before it. In many cases, I have no doubt that the real cause of the accusative is this; when the preposition of the compound verb implies motion, there will be the accusative, though the whole sense will be rest. I do not think you would ever have. Εἶναι ἐπὶ τό. With ἐφίστημι, ἀναφέρω, you will have the accusative; so εἲστηχε ἐπὶ τό in contrast with Christ's sitting in a boat on the sea; but Mark. ἦσαν ἐπὶ γῆς. But this is grammar, and I pursue it no farther.
It remains only to adduce the cases of ἀναφέρειν in the sense of bearing or offering. We have first Heb. 7:27, "who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice; for this He did once when He offered up Himself." Now, here it is perfectly certain that it has nothing to do with the victim bearing sins up to the altar, but with what we have seen to be its usual and uniform sense-the high, priest's offering it on the altar, where it was a victim. So, also, we have distinct proof that it is no vicarious life, for He did it once when He offered up Himself, and it was for sins. When, consequently, it may have a more general meaning of giving Himself up to be a victim, we have the word used for that in Lev., προσφέρω, Heb. 9:1-6. Hence we have in verse 28, " once offered [προσενεχθεις], to bear [ἀναφέρειν] the sins of many." Thus He was once offered, and offered to bear sins as thus offered, of which it is said that He had not to offer Himself often, for then He must often have suffered; but now He has appeared once in the consummation of the ages to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself-that is, His offering, His suffering, was the sacrifice of Himself. His being born was not His sacrifice. He offered Himself-One who was a man though by the eternal Spirit, or there could be no offering. That is, He was a man before He offered Himself, His own blessed voluntary act, the perfect act of Christ, though in obedience, and Himself already the spotless Lamb. He was thus the Man, the spotless One, to bear the sins of many. This, there can be no doubt, refers to Isa. 53:12.
We have, further, James 2:21, " When he had offered up Isaac on the altar;" and 1 Peter 2:5, " Offer up spiritual sacrifices," which give no proof, save that the last shows this, that it was the offering up to God; which is very important in this way, that it shows it was not the bringing up the sins when laid on the victim's head to the altar. The offering of the victim to God is προσφέρω The consumption on the altar was its offering up as a sacrifice to God; this is.ἀναφέρω The notion of bringing up a living victim to the altar is unknown to. Scripture. The animal was slain when it had been offered,(προσενεχθείς) slain by whom it might be, and the blood sprinkled on the altar, and the fat, or the whole victim, burnt. The altar had to do with death and the judgment of fire, and there was the sacrifice. A. living victim bringing up sins to the altar is a thought foreign and contrary to Scripture. When the victim had been presented, and the hands of the offerer had been laid upon it, it was slain at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. Death was the way sin was dealt with in the victim (we know Christ's death was on the cross, as well as the full drinking of the cup of wrath); the thought of bringing sins up livingly, as if He offered Himself and His sins, is an impossibility. No; He offered Himself, and bare (ἀνήνεγχε) oui sins, when offered (προσενεχθείς) as a dying victim. Death was the wages of sin.
Thus I return to 1 Peter 2:24 with the full evidence of Scripture and the Greek use of the word, all the scriptural order of sacrifice, and the language of Scripture, confirming it, that the simple-hearted reader may rest in all confidence in his English translation, "He bare our sins in His own body on the tree." The word " bear" has a sacrificial character; but that no Christian reader ever doubted in this passage.
I do not see, I confess, how any scriptural locution could be made more certain. I doubt that any other could have so ample and absolute a proof of its actual meaning, and refutation of the meaning attempted to be put upon it, and of the desired change in the authorized version.

Melchizedek: Biblical Annotations

Heb. 7:8.-There is really no solid ground for denying that Melchisedec was a man, as simply as Abram, Lot, or any other personage that figures in the description of Gen. 14
The mystery consists not in the person, but in the way in which the Spirit of God records his appearance and action in the scene, so as to make of him a suitable type of the Lord Jesus. Thus not a word is said of his birth, or of his death; there is total silence as to his ancestors; and no hint is given of the lapse of his office, or of any successor. The Holy Ghost, by Paul, argues from this silence (which is so much the more striking as contrasted with the well-known pedigree and succession of Aaron), and thus illustrates Christ's priesthood, which had really those features that are here shown to be typically foreshadowed in Melchisedec. For instance, while verse 8 refers to Melchisedec, all that is meant of him is that the testimony Scripture renders is to his life, not to his death; whereas it frequently speaks of the death of Aaron and his sons. The same principle applies to his ".abiding a priest continually."
The Bible does not speak of his institution, nor of his resignation. When first we hear of Melchisedec he is a priest, and as such we leave him; no son, no successor, appears. The name, " King of Righteousness," the place, " King of Salem; " his sacerdotal office, especially in connection with so peculiar a title of God, "priest of the Most High God" (which, in its full import, implies the possession, de facto as well as de jure, of heaven and earth); the circumstances (" met Abram returning from the slaughter of the kings"); the character of his actions (" blessed him," and not merely sacrifice and intercession),-are all obviously and eminently typical.
There is scarcely more difficulty as to Melchisedec than as to Jethro, priest and king of a later day; though of course the latter could not furnish so apt an illustration, in the circumstances of the case, as the former. Both were real, historical, and not merely mystical, persons.
Two remarks may be made towards the better understanding of this chapter and epistle. The first is, that, if the order is that of Melchisedec, the exercise is that of Aaron, as is most plain in Heb. 9 x. The second is, that in verses 18, 19 of our chapter, we must take " for the law made nothing perfect " parenthetically, and suppose an ellipse of γίνεται (not of ἐτελείωσεν) with. ἐπεισαγωγὴ In other words, " did" ought to be left out of the authorized version.

Matthew and Levi

May I be permitted to express the following objections to Dean Alford's reasons, and, above all, to his conclusion, that Matthew and Levi are distinct persons? It is agreed (1), that " the three narratives relate to the same event;" and (2), that " the almost general consent of all ages has supposed the two persons to be the same." But, so far from allowing that his third fact is almost inexplicable, I can only admire, with Eusebius, the humility and candor of Matthew, who gives himself the same name at the receipt of custom by which he was afterward known as an apostle. The other two Evangelists call him Levi as a publican, and Matthew as an apostle, which is surely a very intelligible thing on the supposition that he bore both names. Thomas is called Didymus by John only; and Thaddeus (or Lebbeus, as in Matthew and Mark) is called Judas by Luke and John, not to speak of his own epistle, with scarcely a note of identification. As to the fourth point, or " early tradition," that which separates the two persons is as minute as it is suspicious. Clement. of Alexandria quotes the heretic Heracleon to the effect that' Philip, Thomas, Levi, and many others, had not suffered martyrdom. Is this most vague statement of a Gnostic-even if it were clear and certain, which it is not, that he means by this Levi the Levi of Mark and Luke-to weigh against the plain and strong presumptions of 1 and 2? As to (5) Origen's testimony (contra Cels. i.), it seems in this passage to distinguish between Matthew and, not Levi, but Λεβης. It is notorious that, elsewhere, Origen identifies Matthew with Levi. So that I am wholly amazed at the Dean's No. (6): " It certainly would hence appear as if the preponderance of testimony were in favor of the distinctness of the two persons." His notions of evidence must be strange indeed, to set the assertion of Heracleon, even if precise instead of being loose, and the statement of Origen, if confirmatory instead of being adverse elsewhere, and, as I think, even here, above his own first two arguments; especially. as he is compelled to own how inexplicable on this supposition it is that Matthew should, in his account, omit all mention of Levi. In fact, such a theory, if true; would turn the seeming modesty of Matthew into a scarcely honest concealment of him who really gave the great feast. I have no doubt therefore, that the common view which identifies Matthew with Levi, as two names of the same individual, is perfectly sound, and the only tenable one.

The Close of Mark Authentic and Genuine

Mark 16:9; et seqq.-Having long since protested against those who treat this passage and the beginning of John 8 with suspicion, I proceed to state my reasons, passing over the disputed place in John, which has been already well defended in another place.
Even Dean Alford, who certainly does not err on the side of credulity, admits that the authority of the close of Mark is hardly to be doubted. Eusebius, and the Vat. and Sin. MSS., omit it; and several others note its absence in certain copies, but generally add, that it appears in the oldest and best. All else of the Greek MSS., all. the Evangelistaria, all the Versions (except the Roman edition of the Arabic), and a large proportion of the earliest and most trustworthy Fathers, are allowed to be in its favor, Lachmann,. in spite of his notorious tendency to follow the very slips of the most ancient copies, edits the entire section without hesitation.
In his notes the Dean urges that the passage is irreconcilable with the other Gospels, and is disconnected with what goes before; that no less than seventeen words and expressions occur in it (some of them repeatedly) which are never elsewhere used by Mark, whose adherence to his own phrases is remarkable, and that, consequently, the internal evidence is very weighty against his authorship; that is, he believes it to be an authentic addition by another hand.
Before examining these criticisms, I must object to a reasoning which affirms or allows that to be scripture which is irreconcilable with other scriptures. If its authority be clear, every believer will feel that, with or without difficulties, all must be really harmonious.
But., it is said, the diction and construction differ from the rest of the Gospel Did the Dean or those who think with him adequately weigh the new and extraordinary circumstances which had to be recorded? In such a case strange words and phrases would be natural if Mark wrote (nor does he by any means want ἅπαξ λεγόμενα elsewhere); whereas, another hand, adding to Mark, would as probably have copied the language and manner of the Evangelist.
Πρώτῃ σαβ. (ver. 9) is alleged to be unusual. Doubtless; yet, of the two, it is less Hebraistic than τὴς μιᾶς σ.(ver. 2), and each might help the other to a Gentile or a Roman ear. And, so far from being stumbled by the way Mary Magdalene is mentioned here, there seems to me much force in Jesus appearing first to her out of whom He had cast seven devils. Who so suitable first to see Him and hear from Himself the tidings of His resurrection, who through death annuls him who had the power of death, that is, the devil? As to the absolute use of the pronoun in 10, 11, is it not enough that the occasion here required what was needless elsewhere?-If. πορευ is found only in 10, 12, and 15, it is because the simple word best expressed what the Holy Ghost designed to say, whereas elsewhere the evangelist employed its compounds in order to convey the more graphically what was there wanted. Thus, he uses εἰσπορ. eight times, while Matthew, in his much larger account, has it but once. Is this the least ground for questioning Matt. 15:17? So, again, Mark has. παραπορ in four different chapters, Matthew once only (27: 39),Luke and John not at all.-Leaving these trivial points, the phrase τοῖς μετ’ αὐτοῦ is to me an argument for rather than against Mark's authorship. Compare with it chap. 1: 36; 3: 14; and 5: 40. As to ἐθεάθη ὑπ’ αὐτῆς and its difference from τοῖς θ. Αὐτόν, the answer is, that the word is most appropriate here and uncalled for in other places, and if the difference prove anything it would show two hands instead of one supplementing Mark's narrative! Thus, for instance, the same verb occurs but once in all the epistles of Paul: are we, therefore, to suspect Rom. 15? Matthew has θεωρέω only twice; are we for a score of such reasons as these to speculate that " another hand" added Matt. 27 and 28.?
As reiterated mention of unbelief, and the Lord's upbraiding the eleven with it, what more instructive, or in better keeping with the scope of the context and of the Gospel? It was wholesome for those who were about to preach to others to learn what their own hearts were, and the Lord in His own ministry sets them right before announcing their great commission. Even if we only look at the word ἀπιστία, it occurs in Mark 6: 6; 9 If the verb is found only in ch. 16: 11, 16, what more marvelous than Luke's having it only in his last chapter (ver. 11, 41), and never once using the substantive either in the Gospel or in the Acts of the Apostles?-It is true that μετὰ τ. and ὕστερον are found in no other passage of Mark, but his customary precision may be one reason why the former is not more common; and the latter occurs once only in Luke and John.-It is confessed that τὸ εὐαγ. Π. τῇ χτίσει is in Mark's style. The fact is, neither of the later Gospels contains the noun εὐαγ. and Matthew always qualifies it as " the gospel of the kingdom," or " this gospel; " whereas, whether or not Mark has the qualified phrases in 1: 14 and 14: 9 (for MSS. etc. differ), he repeatedly has " the Gospel" elsewhere, as chap. 1:15; 8: 35; 10: 29; 13: 10. This, then, affords no slight presumption that the passage is the genuine production of Mark, as well as authentic.
Παραχολ. in 17, and ἐπαχολ. in 20, occur nowhere else in Mark, and that for the best of reasons; the accuracy which the compounded forms impart was demanded here, and not before, where the simple form sufficed. And this is the less surprising, inasmuch as the former appears only in Luke's preface, the latter nowhere else as far as the four evangelists are concerned.
As to the singularity of χαλῶς ἕξουσιν, what simpler, seeing that this promise (as well as that about the new tongues, serpents, etc.) is revealed here only, and was unquestionably verified in the subsequent history? It is the natural converse of a common Scriptural designation for the sick οἰ χαχῶς ἔχοντες, and if the occurrence of ἄῤῥωστος should be here objected to, the reader may find it twice already in Mark 6, while Matthew and Paul use it each only once.
Only one further objection remains worth noticing, the use of χύριος in 19, 20. In Mark 11:3, I suppose it is equivalent to Jehovah, and at any rate I would not press this as in point.. But the absence of such a title before seems to me a beauty, not a blemish, in Mark, whose business was to exhibit the service of Jesus. But now that God had vindicated His rejected Servant by the resurrection, now that He had made Him both " Lord" and Christ, what more natural, or even necessary, than that the same Gospel which had hitherto traced Him as the Servant, Son of God, should make Him now known as " the Lord"? But this is not all. The. Lord had uttered His charge to those who were, at His bidding, to replace Him as servants, and in a world-wide sphere; He was received up to heaven, and sat on the right hand of God. Now it was Mark's place, and only Mark's, to add that, while they went forth and preached everywhere, the Lord was working with them. Jesus, even as the Lord, is, if I may so say, servant still. Glorious truth! And whose hand so suited to record it as his who proved by sad experience how hard it is to be a faithful servant; but who proved also that the grace of the Lord is sufficient to restore and strengthen the feeblest? (Compare Acts 13:13;15: 38; Col. 4:10; 2 Tim. 4:11.)

Doctrine of a Future State in the Pentateuch

The Apostle 'Paul tells us that life and immortality (i.e. incorruptibility,ἀφθαρσία) were brought to light by the Gospel. These truths were but dimly made known before, though there had ever been sufficient for faith to lay hold of. Thus, the very first book of the Bible shows us the care and solemnity which the wandering patriarchs attached to their burial (Gen. 23;25;35;47;49.,1.); and the Apostle, in writing to the Hebrew Christians, affirms that it was by faith (not fasting, customs, or superstition) Joseph gave commandment concerning his bones. He believed in a God that raiseth the dead, in a God who will surely raise them by and by, and give them a glorious link with the promised land, as well as with the city which hath foundations-the better and heavenly country. Again, our Lord convicted the Sadducees of not knowing the Scriptures, or the power of God as to a future resurrection state, and a present living to God, of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; and this from God's words to that Moses who is said by Gibbon to have omitted the doctrine, but who, on the contrary, records this revelation in the same book of Exodus which contains the law of Sinai. (Comp. Luke 20)
I fully admit that there was a considerable measure of obscurity on this, as on many other truths, till He came who was the brightness of the glory of God, and the express image of His substance. But this was in perfect harmony with the Levitical or Jewish system, in which the veil was not yet rent, and God was governing a nation on earth as the vessel of His presence and testimony among the Gentiles. The faith of His elect, of course, penetrated much further, as may be seen in Job 19; Psa. 16, etc. But I am now explaining one simple and satisfactory reason why we should not expect a fuller statement of a future existence in the Pentateuch. It is because the main question there is of a people called to know the manifest exercise of righteous government on the part of a God who dwelt, and that even visibly, in their midst. Individual saints saw much more all through;. but God's government of Israel on the earth is the grand topic of the Old Testament, and the true solution of this seeming difficulty, which is really in perfect keeping with the times, place, people, and circumstances where it occurs.

The Word Aionios

Before treating of the force and usage of this adjective, it is well to examine briefly into αἰών, from which it is formed. The earliest application of the substantive in Greek writers (as Homer, Hesiod, Pindar, the tragic poets, and Herodotus) is in the sense of a man's life, or lifetime. In the later history of the language (not to speak of its medical application to "the spinal marrow ") it denoted a long period of time (Aeschin. Axioch. 17), while the philosophers employed it in contradistinction to χρόνος to express the duration, χρόνος of eternal and unchangeable objects, χρόνος of such as are transient and corporeal. Hence αἰών was used in the ancient philosophy as = the infinite and immutable eternity of God, and by an obvious metonymy = God himself, and subordinate spiritual beings who were supposed to proceed from Him, the term of duration being also extended to those invisible agents or entities themselves. Thus Philo Judaeus says, ἐν αἰῶνι δὲ οὔτε παρελήλυθεν οὐδὲν οὔτε μέλλει ἀλλὰ μόνον ὐφέστηχε. This is important, as showing that in Hellenistic Greek authors of the same age as those of the New Testament the word was used properly and specifically to set forth eternity. " In eternity nothing is past or future, but only subsists." Equally plain is its application to the invisible beings or aeons of Oriental philosophy, as may be seen from the following extract, cited by Mosheim, from Arrian:-οὐ γὰρ εἰμὶ Λἰὼν ἀλλ’ἄνθρωπος, μέρος τῶν πάντων ὡς ὤρα ἡμέρας, ἐνστῆναι με δεῖ ὡς τὴν ὤραν χαὶ παρελθεῖν ὡς ὤραν. Excluding the imaginary- personal force, nothing can be clearer than its use in the time and language of the New Testament inspired writers to represent what is immutable and eternal. Aristotle, I may add, derives it from αἰὲν ὤν(De Coelo,1: 11).
Besides, when qualified by words which modify its sense, it is used in Scripture for the continuous course of a given system ruled by certain principles, as in. Matt. 12: 32; 13:39, 40; 24: 3; 28: 20; or, again, in a moral rather than in a dispensational sense, as in Gal. 1:4; Ephes. 2: 2.
I conclude, then, that while αἰών may be so used as to express the continuous existence of a thing which from its nature does not last forever (as human life, an unbroken age or dispensation, or the general course of this world), its proper sense, taken by itself, is to express eternity. And the same thing is true of αἰώνιος. It is used in certain special connections, as in Rom. 16:25; 2 Tim. 1:9; and Titus 1:2, where χρόνοι modifies its force, and gives a relative rather than an absolute sense; but its natural meaning, unless positively restricted, is eternal in contrast with temporary. It occurs seventy-one- times in the received text of the New Testament, the examination of which need leave no doubt on the believer's mind. Donnegan gives Philem. 1:15 as exceptional; but he is, in my opinion, mistaken.

A Disputed Passage

1 John 5:8.-It is plain that "the Spirit" (τὸ πνεῦμα) means the Holy Ghost. He only is truth (ver. 6). Allow me to take this opportunity of expressing my regret that Prof. Gaussen (Plenary Inspiration, pp. 192, 193) should venture to defend the text. rec. of the two preceding verses, and in doing so to misstate, of course through inadvertence, the evidence. He ought to have known that the alleged testimonies of some early Latin fathers are very questionable, and that the most ancient MSS. of the Latin Vulgate are against the insertion of the disputed clause, not to dwell on the fact that the three Greek MSS. containing it, against near 150 which omit it, are not older than the fifteenth or sixteenth century; at least, if the God. Neapol. belong to the eleventh century, the reading here is a correction made 500 years later.
As to the two grammatical considerations which he borrows from Bishop Middleton, I would briefly reply:-
1. That the words τρεῖς οἱ μαρτυρῦντες, and oἱ τρεῖς (verses 7, 8) are no insuperable difficulty. They are masculine, it is true, while the words to which they relate are neuter; but the difficulty is nearly if not altogether the same,, if the passage remained entire, as in the common text. If in that case the
principle of attaction is used to justify this irregularity, the principle of rational concord applies to the correct text; and the more especially, as τὸ πνεῦμα, that well-known- personal object whose power wrought in the saints, is the first of the three witnesses who are specified immediately after. They are, as it were, personified as witnesses, and the gender is accommodated to the sense rather than in strict grammatical form.
2. The next objection is founded on the article being coupled with ἕν, as if it necessarily supposed a previous mention, which only occurs in the retrenched clause. But this is so far from being necessary that, even if ἕν, were rightly read in verse 7, the object and force of τὸ ἕν in verse 8 is wholly different. In other words, supposing the passage in question to be spurious, the anarthrous form would be an error, and the article is required (i.e. τὸ ἕν) in verse 8; for the idea intended is not the numerical unity, but the uniform testimony of the Spirit, the water, and the blood.
It may be added, that all three, I believe, of these MSS. which contain the passage, omit the article before πατήρ, λόγος, and πν. ἅγ., which I venture to say is not even correct Greek, but just such phraseology as might come from an unlearned forger translating from the Latin. It was Erasmus who supplied the article to each of these words, with no other warrant than his own erudition:

The Out-Resurrection in Philippians 3:11

HI 3:11-11: 21{)I think that the just inference from a comparison of the various texts cited from the Peshito-Syriac is, that this venerable version is lax in representing the true force of different phrases in the Greek New Testament on the subject of the resurrection; not only confounding things which are distinct, but adding, in most or all cases, an idea not suggested by the original.
As to the Greek, there are the strongest reasons for doubting that ἐξανάστασος τῶν νεχρῶν is an inspired expression-I scarcely think that it is a correct one. But it is certain that A B (C is here defective) D E read, in Phil. 3:11, τὴν ἐξανάστασν τὴν ἐχ νεχρῶν (F and G giving τῶν ἐχ, which seems to be a slip for τὴν ὲχ), while only two uncial MSS. of the ninth century, viz. J K, read τῶν without ἐχ. Accordingly, critics, with Wholly different systems. of recension, like Scholz, Lachmann, and Tishchendorf, reject the received text in spite of Griesbach's adoption of it, though he marked the right reading as probable.
It is not surprising that J. H. has failed to seize the exact point of ἐξαναστάσεως νεχρῶν. The phrase is purely characteristic, and hence is anarthrous. The preposition is not omitted before νεχρῶν for the sake of euphony, as Mr. Birks supposes in a recent volume; but ἐξαναστάσεως in Acts 26:23 and Rom. 1:4 indicates the mode or condition in which Jesus should show light to Jew and Gentile, and be defined as Son of God in power; while νεχρῶν was added, it seems to me, as a complement, to denote that it was a resurrection in a proper or strict sense (not figuratively, as in Luke 2 and elsewhere).
It is a mistake to suppose the presence or absence of the preposition immaterial. The truth is that, while the resurrection of Christ, or of the just (i.e. those who are Christ's), like that of all others, is or may be styled ἀνάστασις νεχρῶν never is the resurrection of the unjust designated ἀναστασις ἐχ νεχςῶν-a phrase restricted to those who rise before the wicked. In other words, "the resurrection from, the dead" (which it ought to be in Philip. 3:11, as it is in Luke 20:35, where the expression in Greek is rather the weaker of the two) is, ὰ fortiori, " of the dead "but the converse does not hold; and this suffices to prove their distinctness. I believe that the reader who is familiar with the Scriptures will the most readily acquiesce in this statement.
Rev. 20-1 am glad to perceive that a too common misapplication of 1 Thess. 4:16 is disclaimed. The truth of two distinct resurrections does not require such pressure of texts into its service. The question of the length of the interval was of minor importance comparatively, but it is answered in that book which admirably and appropriately treats of it-the Apocalypse. May I be allowed to add that 1 Cor. 15:23 has just as little to say to the resurrection of the wicked as the passage in 1 Thess. 4 Nor has any person the slightest authority from Scripture to connect what he calls the "trumpet blast" with any save the righteous. None else are considered in either Scripture. " The end," in 1 Cor. 15 does not mean the wicked who are supposed to rise then, but the close of all God's dispensational dealings, even of "the kingdom," viewed from that point, which has been given up; and that clearly supposes all judgment of quick and dead to be over. In other words, " the end" is after the wicked dead have been raised and judged.
As to the alleged distinction between ὥρα ὄτε and ἐν ᾗ, I do not think it has been applied aright in setting it against the plain statement in Rev. 20 of the period that transpires between the resurrection of the blessed and that of the rest of the dead. It was as uncalled for in the Gospel as it was in harmony with the Revelation of John, to enter into chronological times and seasons. Yet the Lord carefully guards against our inferring a common or general resurrection. All are to hear His voice and to rise; but we have as distinctly as possible a resurrection of life and a resurrection of judgment, as in Rev. 20 They were not to marvel if He quickened souls; for, at another epoch, He would be in such manifestation of power that He would raise bodies; but the Gospel decides nothing as to the particular points in the ὥρα when good and bad should rise, the Apocalypse does. It seems to me not unlikely that the true reason why not ὅτε but ἐν ῇ is used in John 5:28, is to distinguish an epoch where the action is immediate (as in John 4:52,53 also) from one wherein it is continuous or sustained (as in John 4:21,23, and 16: 25). This, however, in no way clashes with the fact of there being two distinct and contrasted resurrections, nor forbids our believing that one act is at the beginning, the other at the end of this ὥεα, while both are immediate not prolonged.

The General Design of the Gospels

It admits of the clearest possible internal proof-of course of an accumulative kind-that the Spirit of God employed Matthew to present the Lord Jesus as " the Son of David, the Son of Abraham," i.e. in descent from the two leading points of Jewish glory and promise. Mark is occupied with the " beginning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God," and thus naturally detail's the ministry, in all its varied circumstances, of one who was the ready, patient, and withal powerful servant of all the need that surrounded Him-of one whose dignity as the Son of God " could not be hid" in his least work here below. Next, the genealogy of Luke traces Jesus up to Adam, that is, as connected with the whole race, Gentiles no less than Jews, as Son of man and not merely the Messiah. These observations help to explain the comparatively large use of the Jewish prophets by the first of the Evangelists, while Luke, with equal propriety, depicts " that holy thing," born of the Virgin, who increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man; and Mark, just as admirably, omits all notice of Christ's parentage, His birth, His childhood, etc., and commences at once with the ministry of His forerunner and of Himself. Last of all, John gives a portrait of the Lord, in a point of view higher than the others, as the Word made flesh, who in the beginning was with God and was God, the true light, full of grace and truth. For this reason, as well as because the Jews are here regarded as merged in the universal darkness and death, no genealogy is given: His person and Divine relationship, not His human one, is the subject. It is not that the same truths are not recognized everywhere; for Jesus is owned as Son of God in Matthew, and as Son of David in John. Enough is afforded by every Evangelist to show an unbiassed soul, that He, whom they all described, was God manifested in the flesh. Nevertheless it remains true, that each has his own proper and peculiar line; that what has been already stated is the grand characteristic testimony of those inspired writers; and that in this lies the real key, not only to the differences of language in what are called parallel passages, but also, as I believe, to whatever is inserted or omitted in the several Gospels. The Holy Ghost may allude to other glories of the Lord, in a biography which is specially devoted to trace Him in one very prominent character; and with perfect wisdom He has thereby cut off the objection -that the writers differed in their comparative estimate of the Lord. Not one of the Gospels, for instance, fails to notice His inflexible obedience, whatever the office sustained, whatever the light in which He was regarded. He could not but shine in this moral perfectness; yet even here the attentive reader may perceive that it is pre-eminently Luke, whose business it was to illustrate His real and untainted humanity, as the obedient " Second Man," the Lord from heaven, in contrast with the first man, rebellious Adam: in a word, as the woman's Seed, rather than, as in Matthew, the true Messiah and rejected Emmanuel.
It is familiarly known that Matthew and Luke furnish two. distinct pedigrees from David, the latter Nathan's line, the former Solomon's, which was the elder, and of course, Jewishly, the more important branch. As was usual in legal genealogies, the line of the husband is given by Matthew, who for the same reason records the supernatural dreams of Joseph; whereas in Luke Mary is everywhere the more prominent personage of the two, and accordingly, as showing the source of His human nature, the genealogy here given is that of His mother. Hence, it is said by Luke, ὤν υἱός, ως ἐνομἰζετο, τοῦ Ἰωσήφ, χ. Τ. λ., that is, reputedly, or in the eye of the law, He was son of Joseph, but in fact, Mary's, as had been carefully shown in the preceding chapters. Thus, it is plain that there is nothing contradictory in these various accounts; nay, that each is as and where it ought to be, and is found in that Gospel whose character demands it, and there only. The Messianic descent of Matthew would be out of place in Luke, as the last Adam genealogy of Luke would not suit the historian who speaks emphatically of the Messiah, His relation to the Jews, His rejection, and consequently the transition to a new dispensation, which was to go on in mystery and patience, before the Son of man returns to establish it in manifestation and power; of which last phase the prophets had treated. Luke, on the other hand, was inspired to develope the great principles of God's grace towards man, and the broader moral grounds which they assume; and this is so true that, in the body of his Gospel, events are grouped in their moral connections, not in their Chronological sequence, save where this is required for the truth of the narrative.

Baptized for the Dead

1 Cor. 15:29.-Same find great difficulty in understanding this scripture. But I rather see no reason for doubting that an old and common interpretation is the best, as it certainly flows from the obvious construction, and a very ordinary meaning of the words employed. After the positive revelation in verses 20-28, the apostle resumes his argument with εἰ ὅλως νεχροὶ οὺχ ὲγ which he had pressed in verse 16, with its consequences as to Christ, themselves, and the dead. Here the apostle repeats the phrase' of that verse, in view, first, of those who take the place of those who were fallen asleep in Christ; and, secondly, of a lot in this life most miserable, if hope be there only. Compare 29 with 18 and 30 with 19. To enter the company of such, if the dead rise not, would be folly indeed. Every proper lexicon or grammar will show to those who may not be aware already, that brig has regularly and not infrequently the sense "in the place or stead of," which here, in my opinion, accords best with the previous context, the general reasoning, and the actual phraseology of this particular verse. Αὐτῶν is of course to be read at the end rather than Ti'41, VEZgE42 as having the largest support of the best authorities, MSS. versions and fathers. A. question might arise, as it has arisen, whether the first note of interrogation ought to follow βαπτ. or ἐγ. but the substantial sense remains the same.

Perfect, Not Sinless

Matt. 5:48; 1 John 3:9.-The first of these texts has no bearing whatever on the question of perfection in the flesh. It is the revelation of the name of our Father which is in heaven, and the character practically which suits the kingdom of heaven. The -mere Jew was responsible to render testimony to the righteousness of Jehovah; the believer now is responsible to show forth the grace of " our Father." Vengeance on the Canaanites was then a righteous thing; now "if, when ye do well and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God." The children are bound to sustain the family character, " that ye may be the children of your father which is in heaven, for He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.... Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." Other Scriptures prove, if proof were needed, that sin still abides in the saint here below, however bound he is to disallow and mortify it. This text simply exhorts us to imitate our Father's grace, even to those who deserve His judgment.
The other Scripture (1 John 3:9) regards the child of God in that point which distinguishes him from the world, in the possession of a life from God which is absolutely sinless. No intelligent Christian will therefore forget that the flesh is still in us, though we are no longer in the flesh, but in the Spirit.

My Brethren

Matt. 25:40.-I think that it is clear and certain that those whom " the King " designates as His brethren here, are a distinct class from the sheep. It is not denied that all. God's saints are, or may be, viewed as " sheep." All that is now contended for is, that in this scene we have certain godly Gentiles blessed and inheriting the kingdom prepared for them from the foundation of the world, but at the same time distinguished from others styled the King's brethren, who had previously put these sheep to the test, and been the occasion of showing their difference from the goats, or the unbelieving Gentiles, who had dishonored the King in His messengers. I add that the scene is a millennial one; not the gathering of the saints risen or changed before the millennium; not the judgment of the dead after it, but a scene on earth of living nations dealt with according to their reception or rejection of the King's brethren just before this judgment (Matt. 24:14).

The Mount of Olives Cleft

Zech. 14:5.-It is evident, I think, that Azal is the name of a place, joined, as its origin indicates, or near, to the Mount of Olives. As it never occurs elsewhere in the Bible as a proper name, save of a person, it is not surprising that commentators have differed as to its exact locality, some placing it at the eastern, others, as Henderson, at the western extremity, very close to one of the gates on the east side of Jerusalem.
The meaning I believe to be that Jehovah, standing in that day on the mount (which is most precisely described, as if to cut off the idea of mere "beautiful poetical imagery") shall cleave it in twain from west to east, half receding towards the north, and half towards the south; and that, if He fights with the nations which shall be then gathered against Jerusalem to battle, the Jews are to flee to the valley of His mountains (so called because thus wonderfully cloven), for the valley reaches to Azal, whether it be considered as the terminus a quo or ad quem. The earthquake referred to is the same signal one from which Amos dates his prophecy. The Vulgate, it may be observed, takes אׇצַל as an appellative, and gives us "usque ad proximum;" the Septuagint agrees with the authorized and most other versions as to this, but apparently follows the erroneous reading וְנִםְחׇּם (which is actually that of four of De Rossi's MSS. not to speak of other authorities), instead of וְנַםְחֶּםi.e. the Septuagint gives φραχθήσεται ἡ φάραγξ,χ.τ.λ.(the valley shall be stopped up, etc.) in verse 5, which is evidently contrary to the best readings, and to the plain force of the context. It is scarcely needful to say that this prophecy has never been fulfilled. Even supposing that the Roman army under Titus could be meant, as Dr. Henderson affirms, by " all the nations," it seems extraordinary indeed that so sensible a person could see the rest of verse 2 accomplished there. I should have supposed that the impression kit on the mind by the accounts of Josephus or any one else was rather that the city was taken, and that if half the people went into captivity, the rest were cut off from the city.
But if there could be reasonable doubt as to that verse, can it be pretended that at that time (and it is all closely linked in the prophecy) Jehovah fought with those nations, and that His feet stood in that day on Olivet, and that the mount was split in the midst? It is a weak and impotent conclusion that the flight to Pella, long before the city was taken by the Romans, is what is here so sublimely but withal most graphically predicted. When we take the latter part of the chapter into the account, the hypothesis is beyond measure harsh and contrary to facts.
It is only needful to add that the sense seems to require us to close one paragraph with "the days of Uzziah, King of Judah," and to begin a new one with "And Jehovah my God shall come [and] all the holy ones with thee." The prophet suddenly addresses the Lord, and then proceeds with that day from a point of view which differs altogether from the preceding section, because it introduces His relationship permanently established with the whole earth, consequent on His vengeance upon the nations.

Greater Than John the Baptist

Matt. 11:2,3.-I apprehend that one reason which has hindered many from seeing the failure of John Baptist is, that we are all slow in learning and owning our own weakness. The heart that has proved its own faltering in devotedness and testimony for Christ, will readily understand how John, as Well as his disciples, may have been cast down, when the herald of Messiah was himself bound and gone to prison in sorrow, instead of the ransomed of the Lord coming to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads. But if the Lord notices indirectly, in verse 6, the stumbling of His tried servant (or certainly the blessedness of him who is not stumbled), He turns round to the multitude and graciously indicates the more than prophet place of John 1 do not believe that verse 11 contains the least reflection on the Baptist, any more than verse 13 does on all the prophets. On the contrary, the former verse asserts for him the most distinguished place possible in the old economy; while it discloses at the same time the surpassing glory which attaches to the least in the kingdom of heaven (i.e. the new dispensation, which was then preached, but only set up when the Lord, rejected by the earth, took his seat in heaven).
I am aware that some shrink from what appears such strange and undue exaltation of the New Testament saints; but our wisdom is to accept whatever God gives in sovereign love. It is His to order all for the glory of His Son, while Satan would cheat us of His blessings through a spurious humility, which is really unbelief; especially as the privileges given are the
measure of responsibility. If we lose sight of what God intends, we shall proportionately fail in our walk and worship.

He That Letteth

2 Thess. 2:6-8.-It appears to me that the Spirit here treats of the restraining influence and person with a certain studied obscurity, and that, if wise, we should not too hastily form conclusions. It must be borne in mind that the epistle was an early one, written to young converts who had enjoyed the apostle's oral teaching on the subject of the kingdom of the Lord Jesus (cf. Acts 17:7, with 2 Thess. 1), as well as on the matter in question (ver. 5). Further, if we attach any value to the idea, so prevalent in the early church, that the Roman empire was " the letter," or " what withheld," it is natural that the intimation should be but dim, especially if previously taught by the apostle. If the hindrance consisted in the presence and power of the Holy Ghost, whether personally in the church or governmentally in the world, one can understand how nothing more is here given than the assurance of a restraint up to a certain point. Thus, while the powers that be (whatever the form) are ordained of God, there is a time coming, as we know from
Rev. 11-13, when this shall cease, and the beast shall rise out of the bottomless pit (i.e. be resuscitated by diabolic agency in an exceptional and frightful way), when the dragon (i.e. Satan) gives him his power and his throne and great authority. The withholder will have then disappeared, or at least cease to act as such. The apostasy will have come, and the man of sin be revealed in the fullest way: for I do not deny a partial application of the prophecy to the papacy, while looking for a far more complete development of the evil. The revelation of the lawless one, who is clearly, I think, "the king " of Daniel 11: 3640, will be characterized by an unprecedented energy of Satan " with all power, and signs, and lying wonders," similar language as St. Peter uses of Jesus, "a man approved of God" by miracles, and wonders, and signs which God did by him. It is quite a mistake to suppose that verse 6 will bear "and ye know what is now restraining;" for νῦν is here a particle of transition, and fairly enough given in the English version. No more is implied than their general knowledge that there was a some one or thing which restrained; but ὀ χατέχων ἄρτι in verse 7 does mean that he restrains now. Next, ἐχ μέσον is correctly rendered " out of the way." It is its regular known force in sacred and profane authors, whether connected or not with verbs implying separation, as any good lexicon may satisfy any one. Thus, in ἐχ τοῦ μέσου χαθέζεσθαι (Herod. 3: 83) the verb has nothing to do with that sense, which the phrase does carry. See also Dem. 323, 327 (Reiske). Accordingly the authorized version rightly connects ἕως ἐχ μ. γ. With ὁ χατέχων, while the beginning of verse 8 answers to the beginning of the 7th. If the phrase ἕως ἐχ μ. γ. applied to "the wicked one," and meant "till he appears," the force of χαὶ τότε ἀποχ. would be weakened and useless.

Full Assurance

Allow me to suggest that the common thought as to this phrase in Scripture is incorrect. It is not true that "full assurance of understanding" is the first of the three mentioned by St. Paul, but the last and highest. "Full assurance of faith " is the first: it rests upon the blessed work and sacrifice of Christ as a finished and accepted thing (Heb. 10) The next is "full assurance of hope," which looks for and anticipates with joy the time of glory and the inheritance of the promises (Heb. 6) "Full assurance of understanding" supposes intelligence of God's ways in their height and depth, as developed in the mystery of Christ's heavenly glory, or, as it is said, "to the acknowledgment of the mystery of God." How many there are who are perfectly clear as to their acceptance, and who enjoy the hope of Christ's return and reign, and yet are most indistinct and uninstructed in "the mystery," as taught in Ephesians and Colossians. So utterly false is it that " the full assurance of understanding," spoken of in Col. 2 gives birth to the other two.

City of Refuge

Joshua. 20:6.-The true application of the type is, I believe, not to departed spirits, but to the Jews, who are providentially kept of God, but kept withal out of their inheritance, until the close of the High-priesthood which Christ is now exercising in heaven. He will then come out and bless the people of Israel, to whom the glory of the Lord shall appear. They knew not what they did when they smote and killed the Prince of Life. In the city of refuge they remain till the close of Christ's (heavenly) priesthood, after which they are to return to the land of their possession. See Num. 35:25,28.

The Savior of All Men

The apostle had been showing how little profit there is in bodily exercise, whereas godliness is valuable for all things, having the promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come. This he pronounces a faithful word, and worthy of all acceptation: the reason appears in our verse. For therefore we both labor and suffer reproach (painful as it may be for the present), because our settled hope is in the living God, who is the preserver of all men, specially of the faithful. The question here is of His preserving care, and not of salvation only; and this the apostle shows to be most true of those who are most tried by reason of their faithfulness. 1 Tim. 4

Death Abolished

2 Tim. 1:10.-In this scripture our Savior is represented as having abolished death (here personified, as is sin in Rom. 7.) Of course this does not mean that men no longer die as a fact, but that He has annulled the title of death as regards His own; as in Heb. 2 it is declared He took part of flesh and blood, " that, through death, he might destroy (χαταργήσῃ, the same word as here) him that had the power of death, that is, the devil." But He has done more: He has brought to light life and incorruption (the body being in question, and not the soul only) through the gospel. It is not said nor meant that either was absolutely hidden, for enough was suggested for the faith of God's elect to show that resurrection and heaven were in His mind, and not earthly blessing only, as Matt. 22:23-33, and Heb. 11 abundantly prove. Nevertheless, under the law, these were obscure subjects, because the ordinary and normal application of the law was found in present visible rewards or punishments from a God who dwelt between the cherubim on earth. The gospel does not speak of life and incorruptibility as utterly unknown before: on the. contrary, it supposes them to have been partially seen gleaming here and there through the darkness; whereas now they stand out in bold relief, the grand theme of evangelic testimony, as viewed in the person of the Lord Jesus. "Which thing," as St. John says, " is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing, and the true light now shineth."

The Day of the Lord

2 Peter 3:10.-I think it will be found that, while all three Scriptures are equally inspired, and therefore certainly and unmixedly true, our text takes a middle. place, as to measure of light given, between the prophecy of Isaiah (65. 66., to which the reference is clear) and the Apocalypse. And this exactly accords with its season historically. The Apostle of the Circumcision adds to the light we might have gathered from the Jewish prophet; for he discloses new heavens and new earth, not merely in a moral and incipient way, which finds its center if not its scope, in the millennial condition of Jerusalem and her people, but in a full, physical sense, consequent upon the day of the Lord wherein the heavens pass away and the earth is burned up. But it was not the business of Peter but of John to lay down the positive landmarks of time, though he does not give us certain elements with more precision than the Old. Testament promise he refers to. Accordingly it is in the Apocalypse that we meet the unambiguous statement that the reign of Christ and the glorified saints for 1000 years, besides a brief space after that, takes place after the partial accomplishment of Isa. 65 and before the fulfillment of Rev. 21:1. It appears to me that 2 Peter 3 embraces both these thoughts within the compass of "the day of the Lord," which is used in the largest application of the term, so as to include the acorn of Isaiah and the full-grown oak of St. John, who alone was given to see, or at least to make known; the exact times and seasons and years connected with the entire scheme. If we bear in mind that the millennium is styled "the regeneration" in Matt. 19, it may help us to see that the difficulty is not insuperable. " If any man be in Christ he is a new creature," or there is a new creation. That work done in the soul, one can take up the language of faith and say, " Old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new:" while yet it is evident that, as to fact, the full change does not pass over the man until the coming of the Lord.
Just so is it with the earth:-the millennium is "the regeneration," and so, even then, Isaiah can speak those rapturous words which, nevertheless, will not have their actual physical completion till that dispensation is closed. Besides, if the latter is to be insisted on, Mr. B. has no right to include the millennial Palestine, or what he calls " the earthly paradise," among " all these things" that shall be dissolved: for Peter is speaking solely of present things, or things of a like nature, whereas the hypothesis Mr.. B. combats supposes a vast and essential difference, at least as to Palestine, commenced at the beginning and complete at the end of the day of the Lord; not as regards that land only, but the earth and the heavens as a whole. Now it is of the last or perfect change that Rev. 21:1 speaks, as it is there that we get the fullest light which revelation affords on this subject. And I must remind him of Bengel's wholesome words, " Antiqui et ea autem et involutiora dicta ex novissimis quibusque et distinctissimis interpretari, non illis ad haec enervanda et eludenda abuti debemus." Isa. 65 and 2 Peter 3 give no countenance to, while Rev. 20. 21. positively excludes the wild fancy which has been revived, after a long slumber, that the nations, Gog and Magog, are the wicked dead resuscitated. And this is only one of the many absurdities into which a departure from the plain drift of these chapters reduces the wanderer.

The Millennium

2 Peter 3:12,1. The Millennium does not precede, nor is it subsequent to, but rather included in, "the day of God," as used here by St. Peter. That day means, as I suppose, the entire course of divine intervention, from the appearing of Christ in glory till the new heavens and earth. The millennial reign is a part of that grand scheme, Nor is there any serious difficulty in accounting for the existence of Gog and Magog (Rev. 20), and of sin and death, up to the close of that reign; because, even supposing none left alive in their natural bodies on earth at its beginning, save the righteous, it does not follow that their children must be. So that one can readily see how, during so long a period of unbroken peace and blessing, there might be hosts of unconverted Gentiles, on whom Satan, when loosed, immediately acts in deceit, mustering them for the last rebellion against God. I must be excused if I. think the solution which Dr. Cumming endorses contrary to Scripture. I see no ingenuity, but painful confusion, in viewing these nations, which are in the four quarters of the earth, as similar to the dead in their graves. Not the devil, but God, raises them, after all rebellion is over.
2. I think some will find that the main root of their difficulty lies in confounding the coming with the day of the Lord. The early Church was taught to expect the coming of Christ as that which might be at any moment; while, on the other hand, events were revealed as antecedent to, the day of the Lord (not the παρουσία merely, but the ἐπιφανείατῆς παρουσίας αύτοῦ), which must necessarily occupy some years at least.

Conscience

Scripture shows, I think, that conscience has a twofold character, which is rarely distinguished: 1. Sense of responsibility to God; and 2. Knowledge of things as good or evil in themselves. It is evident that Adam had the first character of conscience in Eden as well as out of it; but the second he had not till the fall gave him a bad conscience. Previously he was innocent,-not holy, but ignorant of evil, as an unfallen creature in the midst of what was very good. Before the fall he did not know what lust was, nor anything else of what we call moral evil. For the eating of the apple was evil, not in itself, but by God's command, to abstain.

Every Family

Eph. 3:15.-I humbly think that it is wrong to speak
of what we lose by giving up a wrong translation for a right one; and it is confessed that " every family" is here required. Sure I am that the true rendering suggests not merely views equally valuable, but much more so than the false one, which has really confused and prejudiced the minds of Christians against that which otherwise might have been apprehended and enjoyed. I do not doubt that the phrase embraces the sum of God's intelligent creation, at least what is blest, whether in the heavens or on earth, angelic or human.

National Resurrection

Dan. 12:2.-Many Christians, whose judgment is to be respected, apply this passage to a literal resurrection. But they are involved in difficulties, from which ingenuity essays in vain, as I think, to extricate them. Instead of commenting on what appear to me mistakes, let me state my firm conviction that a national resuscitation of Daniel's people, i. e. Israel, is in question here, as in Isa. 26 and Ezek. 37 This being understood, the entire context is plain. It is at the time of their deepest distress that Michael stands up, and not merely are all those elect Jews delivered who have been glanced at in the previous parts of this prophecy, but many who are dispersed, as it were buried, or at least slumbering, among the Gentiles, awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. (Compare Isa. 66 sub finem.) Then follows the peculiar blessedness of the " Maschilim," i.e. the understanding ones, that instruct the mass in righteousness, who, instead of going out like the moon, though it may appear again, shine as the stars forever and ever. This figurative application of a resurrection to Israel's circumstances at the close of the age is of course perfectly consistent with a real bodily resurrection of saints before, and of the wicked after, the millennium, as in Rev. 20:4-12.
I am aware of the assertion that the phrase וְאֵלֶּה-אֵלּِِِה is never used elsewhere in Hebrew as distributive of a general class previously mentioned. But I believe it to be unfounded. The reader has only to examine Josh. 8:22, and he will see that the pronoun is used in a similar way, Israel being the general class, and the same expression as here taking it up distributively. Accordingly, our English Bible in both cases, and in my judgment rightly, translates ".some... and some." Of course it is not denied that in certain circumstances " these" and " those " would well represent the meaning. My opinion is that the other is an equally legitimate rendering wherever required by the context, as I conceive it to be in both the texts cited. And such, I find, is the view of the Vulgate and Luther as to Dan. 12:2.
Again, I have no sympathy with those who apply this verse to mere temporal deliverance. But it is not a necessary inference, on the other hand, that the words " everlasting life" imply a resurrection-state. People forget that the saved Israelites in question are supposed to possess eternal life, which certainly may be before any change as to the body. It may help some readers to notice a somewhat parallel case, both in good and evil, as respects the Gentiles in Matt. 25:46. Plainly they are the nations at the beginning of the millennium discriminated as sheep and goats, and dealt with by the King without delay. " And these shall go away into everlasting punishment; but the righteous into life eternal." So, when Israel reappears in that day, sad examples are to be there, whose " worm shall not die, neither shall their fire be quenched, and they shall be an abhorring to all flesh;" while others are to be brought an offering to the Lord, who shall not labor in vain, nor bring forth for trouble; for they are the seed of the blessed of the Lord, and their offspring with them. These awake to everlasting life; the others are abandoned to shame and everlasting contempt, apart from the question of resurrection. It will be a time, not of national deliverance merely, but of signal mercy and judgment from God; and this for Israel after their long sleep among the Gentiles, as well as for such Jews as will have figured more in the previous crisis in the land. The Maschilim seem to be a special class still more distinguished (ver 3).

The Birth of Christ Mistimed

In " The Phoenix," " a collection of manuscripts and printed tracts, nowhere to be found but in the closets of the curious (1707)," there is a paper with the above title, " proving that Christ was not born in December." The book is not very scarce, so I need not transcribe the article. The following is the substance of it which may prove interesting:- " David divided the year's service of the priests into twenty-four courses, and the eighth course fell to Abijah (1 Chron. 24:10).
" The Jewish ecclesiastical year, commencing with the month Abib or Nisan, nearly corresponding to our March, 0.S., the eighth course would occur at the end of June or at the beginning of July in our computation.
"Zacharias, the father of John the Baptist, was of the course of Abia, and as he was ministering, in the order of his course' (that is, in June or July), when the angel appeared to him, and that immediately on his return home his wife Elizabeth conceived, it follows that the conception of John the Baptist was about Midsummer, where we place his birth.
" In the sixth month of Elizabeth's pregnancy (Luke 1:26-36), i.e. in December, where we place Christ's birth, the angel Gabriel announced to the Virgin Mary that she should be the mother of the Christ; and, counting onward for nine months, we come to the month of September, and to the Feast of Tabernacles, which was a type of the incarnation of the Son of God, as the period of the Savior's birth.
" In which feast-time of eight days, Christ pitched in the tabernacle of His flesh amongst us, as appears, John 1:14: ' And the Word was made flesh (χαὶ εσχήνςσεν ὲν ¨ημῖν), and pitched his tabernacle amongst us:' He became a Scaenite. Thus (we) behold the sweet harmony between the type and the thing typified, for Christ came not to break the law, but to fulfill it."
The error appears to have arisen from supposing that Zacharias was the high priest, in which case his ministry would have occurred in September. [Is there any other thought of this subject?]

The Suitability of the Evangelists

As a preliminary to any detailed observations on the Gospels, allow me briefly to notice the wisdom of the Spirit in the choice of each workman for his work.
" Matthew, the publican," was not one whom man would have selected as the apostle and biographer of the Messiah. At first sight he might seem the least eligible for presenting the Lord to the Jews, for, as a class, none were in such disrepute as those Jews who consented to gather the taxes which the Romans imposed on their nation. But, regarded more closely, nothing could have been in more admirable keeping with the line of things which the Holy Ghost traces in his Gospel, for Jesus there is not the Messiah only, but the rejected Messiah. His rejection, with its grave and fruitful results, is just as much the theme as His intrinsic claims, with, all God's external attestations. And who so fit a witness or the grace which would seek the least worthy, if those " that were bidden" would not come, as he who was called from the odious receipt of customs?
In the second Gospel the Spirit is evidently developing the perfectness of the Lord's ministry in word and deed. Now John, whose surname was Mark," was just the right person for such a task, always bearing in mind that none was fit unless immediately inspired to write. But, among those who were so empowered of God, John Mark was precisely the one fitted by personal experience to appreciate, when the Spirit gave him to indite that Divine account of the gospel-service of Jesus; for he had bitterly known what it was to put his hand to the plow and look back, with its painful consequences on all sides (Acts 13-15) But he had also learned, to his joy, and the blessing of others, that the Lord can restore and strengthen, giving us, through His grace, to overcome wherein we have most broken down. This very Mark subsequently became a fellow-worker of St. Paul, and a comfort to him, as much as earlier he had been a sorrow
(Col. 4) " Take Mark," says he, in his last letter to Timothy, " and bring him with thee; for he is profitable to me for the ministry."
For the writing of the third Gospel, again, Luke was manifestly the most appropriate instrument. From Col. 4 it would seem that he was a Gentile, and by profession a physician, both which particulars, as well as its dedication to Theophilus, wonderfully harmonize with the way in which our Lord is there depicted; not so much the Messiah, nor the Servant, but "the Man, Christ Jesus," the Son of God born of the Virgin, in His largest human relations, in His obedience and prayerfulness, in His social sympathies, in miracles of healing and cleansing, in parables of special tenderness towards the lost. It is this prominence of our Lord's manhood, as brought out in Luke, which to me accounts for the emphatic statements of grace to Gentiles, as it falls in with the special form of his preface, which has been so frightfully abused by rationalists in general, English or foreign. He lets us know his motives, and seeks to draw Theophilus by the cords of a man; but if there be thus a human side of the picture, there is another as divine as in the other Gospels, where the thoughts and feelings of the heart are not so laid bare. The notion that such an opening, touchingly suited as it is to the way in which our Lord is throughout presented in this Gospel, should induce us to regard the writer as a mere faithful and honest compiler, without supernatural guidance in the arrangement of his subject-matter, etc., is worthy only of an infidel. And it is only to cheat oneself or others with vain words to affirm that the occurrence of demonstrable mistakes in the Gospels does not in any way affect the inspiration of the Evangelists. The profanity of these statements scarcely exceeds their folly, nor should 1 have taken this opportunity to denounce them if they were not at this moment finding extensive acceptance, especially among young students, not, alas! without the sanction of those who ought to know better.
Lastly, that St. John was eminently the right instrument for his task is most apparent. Who could so fitly, if so it pleased the Holy Ghost, set before us " the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father," as he who leaned on Jesus' bosom, -the disciple whom Jesus loved?

Choice of Scene

It is the difference of design, which, to me, solves the difficulty stated by one objector or another. Matthew and Mark, in the body of their Gospels, are occupied with the Lord's sojourn and ministry in Galilee; Luke with not that only, but His gradual journey to Jerusalem (9: 51; 13: 22; 17: 11; 18: 31; six. 28); and John with His ways and words in or near Jerusalem itself yet more than elsewhere, though Galilee and Samaria were assuredly not left out. What Matthew describes is the accomplishment of Jewish prophecy and the witness of Jerusalem's unbelief; while Mark's dwelling on the same arose, I think, from the fact that Galilee was the actual scene of our Lord's service, to which theme his Gospel is emphatically devoted. Luke, on the other hand, brings out the lingering of our Lord's love and pity; His face is steadfastly set on the place where He should accomplish His decease; but His slow steps attest the reluctance and the sorrow with which He visits Jerusalem for the last time, and affords the crowning proof of man's total ruin, in His blood and cross. John, finally, regards every place and being in the light of His personal Divine glory.. Jerusalem, therefore, is no longer, as in Matthew, styled " the holy city." He was the light, the true light; all outside, and everywhere else, was but darkness, and Jerusalem needed the Son of God as much as Galilee, and was no more to Him, in that point of view, than any other spot. He could, so far as Himself was concerned, freely speak and work there or anywhere. What was " this mountain," nay, what Jerusalem, to the Son of the Father? If there was nothing to attract, there was nothing in one sense which could repel. He who was full of grace and truth accepted His entire humiliation, and found objects on which to expend His love wherever He might move-in the boastful city of holiness no less than in the barren wilderness. It is the design impressed by God upon the several Gospels which thus simply explains a fact which is seen by, but useless to, him who denies that design.

The Strait Gate

Luke 13:24.-Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.
The true solution I believe to lie not in the difference of striving and seeking, on which some have rested unduly, and others so mistakenly as in effect to make men their own saviors, but rather in this, that, while many will seek to enter in, it is not at the strait gate but by some method of human device. The natural heart dislikes God and God's way, and it easily deceives itself into a vague reliance on mercy without righteousness, which is an infidel thought, or into a vain confidence in religious ordinances, which is a superstitious one: in either way, man is lost. People might like to enter the kingdom, but not by regeneration through faith in Christ.

They Shall Receive You

Luke 16:9.-Dean Alford's note is most objectionable in point of doctrine, as betraying no little ignorance of the true grace of God, whilst it displays also lamentable lack of acquaintance with the style of St. Luke. If one examine Luke 6:38, 44; 12: 20; 14: 35, etc., he will perceive that Dean A.'s oversight of the usus loquendi has opened the door for the wild notion that poor and needy friends, who have been helped here, are to receive us into the, or their, everlasting tabernacles with joy. It is clear that the difficulty is no greater as to "they shall receive," in Luke 16:9, than in " they require" (ἀπαιτοῦσιν), in chap. 12: 20. The meaning is simply " ye shall be received," "thy soul is required: " if more be meant, it is God, not man, who receives and requires. The grand point is the sacrifice of the present, in view of what is future and eternal. The question is not the means or title to enter the everlasting habitations, but the character of those who shall be received there.

Private Interpretation

2 Peter 1:20.-Permit me briefly to show why I consider the common view to be erroneous. In the first place it gives no reason for taking προφητεία as equivalent to an inspired declaration, predictive or not. Indeed, I am not aware that the word in the New Testament ever has this loose meaning, and I am quite clear that the verb from which it is derived countenances nothing of the sort in 1 Cor. 14:3, but simply contrasts prophesying with speaking in a tongue. In other words, that verse in no way defines prophesying, but compares its character with the gift of tongues. But, even if it were ever so used beyond a doubt in the New Testament, I am of opinion that the context here decidedly restricts προφητεία to the revelation of future events.
It is agreed that ἐπἱλυσις means interpretation, or the act of interpreting, though some, as Calvin and Grotius, have been rash enough to venture on the conjecture ἐπηλύσεως, and many more have given the force of " movement " to ἐπίλυσις, while it would really require ἐπήλυσις (= approach), or some such word.
The main question remains as to the force and reference of ἴδιος. One critic reasons from its frequent opposition to χοινός. But this is too narrow a foundation, because each of these words possesses significations not thus opposed. The fact is that, beside the elliptical χατ’ἰδἰαν, ἴδιος occurs near a hundred times in the New Testament, and always means " own" (his, her, its, etc., according to the case). I have little doubt, both from general usage and from the verses before and after the passage under debate, that,ιδίας here refers to the subject of the sentence, προφητεία, and that the meaning is, "No prophecy of Scripture is (or is made) of its own interpretation." Taken by itself, it is not its own interpreter, but must be viewed as part of a grand whole, whereof Christ's glory is the center. I must be excused, therefore, if I believe the idea of some to be as thorough a perversion of the text as the Romish one. One contends for the general right of man, they for the exclusive prerogative of the church so-called-both, in my judgment, dangerous errors, however concealed or explained. The Holy Ghost leads us to connect facts with God's purposes in Christ, and thus to understand and expound prophecy, which taken by itself is never rightly known. Even Rosenmuller, Wahl, etc., seem to agree with the view here contended for.

The Vine of the Earth

Rev. 14:19.-" The vine of the earth " is the symbol of earthly religion in its last apostate state. Christ, the Lord from heaven, is the true vine; this is the false vine, the scene of whose judgment appears to be Jerusalem (cf. verse 20). Where Christ suffered, where the church of God first saw the light, it would seem that Satan will at the close completely triumph. It is important to note that it is a distinct and subsequent scene to the fall of Babylon, given already in the same chapter. If Rome' be, as I believe, the center of one picture, Jerusalem is, I think, of the other, the metropolis respectively of Gentilism and Judaism in their antagonism to God at the end of the age.

The Spirit and the Bride Say, Come

Rev. 22:17.—I do not wonder that there are difficulties felt in accepting the interpretation of those who apply this verse exclusively to the Lord or to sinners. The truth is that the former portion refers to the one, and the latter to the other. Nothing can be sweeter nor clearer when seen. Jesus had just announced Himself as not merely the root and the offspring of David, but the bright and morning star. Immediately the church, with the bridal affections, says, Come. It is the Bridegroom that thus awakens her desires that He should come. He is the first object of the heart, and lest it should be thought to be a mere human, unsanctioned longing, it is added, "The Spirit and the bride say, Come."
But there are many who have heard His voice and been washed in His blood who yet feebly know their privileges in Him; they little if at all appreciate what He is as the Bridegroom, what they are as His bride. Are these to be silent? Nay, " let him that heareth say, Come." They may know his love but imperfectly: still let them not fear to say, Come.
But does not such a hope, such a waiting of the heart, hinder one's yearning after poor souls? Enemies have said so, mistaken friends may have thought so; but God links the two most blessedly together. If the bride, if the individual saint, owe the first love of the heart to Him who is coming to meet us in the air, so much the more can we turn round to the needy world and invite him that is athirst to come (not to say, Come, which to him, indeed, were but judgment). Nay, even if I meet a soul who perhaps has not yet known real soul-thirst, yet is willing, I can bid him freely welcome: "whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." It is a perfectly beautiful scene, which the Lord grant us better to know and enjoy by the Holy Ghost!
Zech. 12 One asks: 1. What will determine, even approximately, the date of this prophecy? It is evident that the date assigned in some Bibles (B. C. 587) is a mistake; probably B. C. 517 was meant, which would better accord with the previous dates 520518 B. C. The Edinburgh Bible of Blair and Bruce, like that of the London Tract Society, gives the date according to your correspondent. On the other hand, the Oxford Bible (4to, 1845) gives a century nearer Christ, i. e. 487, both of which seem to me highly improbable; while Bagster's Bible, after dating several of the preceding chapters B. C. 518, suddenly fixes chap. 14. at B. C. 587; and Collins's Bible (1855) is equally strange, putting B. C. 587 to the preceding chapters, and B. C. 517 to chap. 14.! For myself, I see no reason to doubt that Zech. 9-14 form a part of the great prophecy which commences with chap. 12.; and I conceive that they may have been given in or not long after the fourth year of Darius Hystaspes. (Compare Ezra 5) To put this prophecy as far back as the reign of Nebuchadnezzar is, in my opinion, of all hypotheses the least reasonable.
2. The " idol shepherd" is Antichrist, whom retributive judgment is to raise up in the land of Judea in the last times. " If another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive." He shall in the end suffer the sternest vengeance of God. This is no modern opinion.
Pastor stultus, et imperitus (says Jerome, Comment. in Zech. lib. 3. cap. 11.), hand dubium quia Antichristus sit, qui in consummatione mundi dicitur ease venturus et qualis venturus sit, indicator Iste pastor ideo resurgat in Israel, quia verus pastor dixerat: Jam non pascam vos. Qui alio nomine et in Daniele propheta (cap. 9.) et in Evangelio (Marc. 13.) et in epistola Pauli ad Thessalonienses (2 Thess. 2), abominatio desolationis, sessurus in templo Domini, et se facturus ut Deum, qui et per Isaaiam magnus census dicitur (Isai, 32.) ' Tarn sceleratus est pastor, ut non idolorum cultor, sed ipse idolum nominetur, dum se appellat Deum, et vult ab omnibus adorari.
3. There is no reason that I see for identifying the stone in Zech. 12:3 with that in Matt. 21:44. The former evidently means Jerusalem itself, the latter the Lord Himself in two positions, answering to the two advents. First in His humiliation, He is a stone as it were in the ground, and "whosoever shall fall on it shall be broken," verified in all unbelievers, but especially in the Jews; next," He is exalted to heaven, and coming again in power and great glory, He will execute destructive judgment-" on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder." (Cf. Dan. 2: 7.; Rev. 19) "A burdensome stone " is another idea, and will be true of Jerusalem in the latter day, when the Assyrian heads a grand Gentile confederacy after the Antichrist is disposed of, which is the subject of Zech. 12:2-6;14: 1-3: also Isaiah, Micah, Daniel, and other prophets, treat of this closing king of the North.
4. There is no intermingling of the church or Christian body with the subjects of this prophecy. There may have been some partial application in the past, as there will assuredly be a complete fulfillment in the future; but it is Judah and Jerusalem that are in question, whatever profit the church or Christian may and ought to draw from this as from all Scripture.
The double reference of John 19:36, and Rev. 1: 7, shall fall, it will grind him to powder into the prophecy, which mainly bears on the second, but presupposes the first. " They shall look upon Me whom they have pierced." But Rev. 1:7 is so far from intimating a general conversion of mankind previous to the return of the Lord, that it plainly enough insinuates their then unbelief, for "all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him." He will be unwelcome to them.
The mourning of godly awakened consciences, when Jehovah-Jesus is seen, to the final deliverance of Jerusalem and the total overthrow of all their Gentile foes, is most strikingly described in verses 10-14, but it is in terms which exclude the revival in Ezra's time, save as being a feeble earnest. Each felt alone with the Lord; and those families are specially named who represent prominent classes in Israel from the beginning, and throughout their history.

The Resurrection of the Body

The doctrine of the future state was taught in the Pentateuch, as well as in later parts of the Old Testament. It is absurd to pretend that Psa. 16:9,10;17: 14, 15; 49: 14, 15, were written after the Captivity; or to deny that they reveal or imply the resurrection. There is no sort of difficulty in supposing that Zoroaster borrowed what he knew of this truth from Holy Writ, which was certainly more or less known to him. I am not at all disposed to give up Job 19:26,27; for I think it a decisive testimony to this precious truth, and the more striking as proving it to be held by saints outside the fathers, or the children of Israel: so that this again would readily account for traces of its traditional existence in the East long before the Captivity. In spite of all the assaults of critics, I am satisfied that, in all that is needed for bringing out a true bodily revival wherein the patriarch expected to see the Redeemer stand on the earth, the English Bible gives the substantial truth. So does the Septuagint, in spite of inaccuracies-οἶδα γὰρ ὅτι ἀένναός ἐστιν ὁ ἐχλύειν με μελλων ἐπι γῆς ἀναστῆσαι τὸ δέρμα μου τό ἀναντλοῦν ταῦτα. So Jerome, in his interlinear exposition of the book, gives a version which is identical with his Vulgate save in the addition of one word, though I allow that his Latin is far more distant from the sense of the Hebrew than our authorized English. His comment is plain enough:-
Ego, inquam, jam corruptus ulceribus, in has came mortali incorruptus, per resurrectionem futuram glorificatus videbo Deum. Certus atque incommutabilis in hoc fundamento fidei ista loquebatur.
De Wette, it is true, gives a very different turn, adopting a sense of the last clause of ver. 26, suggested in our margin; but I unequivocally prefer the authorized text, for though ip often occurs in the sense "out of," "without," "from," the meaning is not that he should see God apart from the flesh, or having no body, but that from out of the flesh he should see Him, or substantially "in his flesh." This is confirmed by the next verse, " Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another: " a real resurrection of the body, and nothing else.
I believe that Isa. 26:19, like Dan. 12:2, refers to the national resuscitation of Israel, converted and restored by the power of God. The terms are of course borrowed from, and presuppose the known truth of, a bodily resurrection. See also Ezek. 37 and Hos. 6: 2;13: 14, which, in my opinion, entirely relieve this interpretation from the charge of halting. The omission of the words inserted by our translators may help to make the meaning of Isaiah plainer.

The Intercession of Jesus on the Cross

Luke 23:34.-I am persuaded that it is perfectly true that Christ is here presented as interceding for the guilty people who took, and by wicked hands crucified and slew Him. The grand design in this part of Luke is to bring out the iniquity of Israel and the grace of Christ in spite of all. I say nothing of "Pontius Pilate," who, indeed, would have released Him but for fearing the Jews and Cæsar; but it is evident to me that the Holy Ghost by Peter expressly refers, in Acts 3:17, to this intercession of Jesus, and proves that the people of the Jews and their rulers were intended. Further, the intercession did prevail partially as to sphere then, as it will by and by triumph, when "all Israel shall be saved." To lower the Lord's intercession to the mere pattern of various eminent persons forgiving their executioner, ought to be, in my opinion, repulsive to a spiritual mind. It needs little argument to refute the notion.

The Last Day

John 6-It may help some of your readers to bear in mind that "the last day" has a broad moral force, like "the day of the Lord" in 2 Peter 3, save that it applies yet more extensively, taking in the resurrection of the saints, which "the day of the Lord" is nowhere said to embrace. Between John 6:39,40, and John 12:48, the Millennium (Rev. 20:4,5) intervenes, " the last day" beginning a little before, and ending a little after it. It is a vague, or general expression of the entire closing scene, when man's day is over and God acts in power, whether in blessing or judgment.

The Dependent One

Psa. 16:2,3.-I am of opinion that the main idea of the Psalm is the perfectness of Messiah's dependence on Jehovah, shown in His humiliation here below (Heb. 2), and vindicated in His resurrection (Acts 2) Hence it is that, while a divine person, yet taking the place of a servant, His soul (for it is feminine) said to Jehovah, " Thou art my Lord; my goodness is not to Thee." It is the expression of his self-renunciation as man, which was in truth His moral glory. (Compare Mark 10:17-27; Luke 18:18, etc.)
On the other hand, He said, " To the saints who are in the earth, and the excellent; All my delight is in them." This latter was acted out in His baptism, when He thus fulfilled all righteousness and identified Himself in grace with the godly in Israel. As man, He did not exalt himself, but gave the entire glory to God; and this not in austere distance from the despised remnant who bowed to the testimony of John the Baptist, but graciously entering into and sympathizing with their true place before God. " He that sanctifieth, and they who are sanctified, are all of one."

The Faith

Gal. 3:23.-" Faith" is not here put for its object, I think, but is contrasted with the law when fully declared to be the sole means of justification, as it was after the cross of Jesus, when all pretension to stand before God on the law was manifestly at an end. Faith was always that whereby saints were justified really, even while the Levitical system had its place, and, if I may so say, obscured the faith which wais within: then all that was outward fell, and the faith stood revealed.

The Septuagint

There can be no doubt of the fact that the Septuagint was generally used by our Lord and the inspired writers of the New Testament. But this fact ought not to be abused to the denial of what is equally certain-that it contains numerous mistranslations throughout, and is in no way to be compared for accuracy with the authorized version. Nevertheless the Holy Ghost condescended to use it freely, adopting its language, where true, even if it differed from the meaning of the Hebrew: just as occasionally He gives a paraphrase which differs from both. It was a most important witness already extant among the Gentiles, and God employed it in grace without in any way guaranteeing the inspiration of the LXX, or of their work. What would be thought of the argument that the works of Menander or Epimenides were inspired because the Holy Ghost cited them in the Epistles of St. Paul? It was not an unnatural thing that the early fathers, Greek and Latin, should attach an exaggerated value to the version chiefly in use among them. Not even Augustine knew the Hebrew original, and of the Latins scarce any save Jerome. It is much to be regretted that the idea should be revived by a respectable scholar of our own day.

Who Are "These Kings?"

Dan. 2:44.-The meaning is not the four kingdoms in reference to the fourfold succession in the metallic image, but rather, as it seems to me, an incidental allusion to the peculiar and complex constitution of the fourth, last empire of man. " The kingdom shall be divided," speaking of the feet and toes (ver. 41), and to this we must refer, as I consider, " the days of these kings " (ver. 44). The consequence is important; for thereby is excluded Mede's scheme of the regnum lapidis, first; and the regnum montis, by and by. I can understand this in a certain sense; but it is not the teaching, in my opinion, of this chapter. God's kingdom, here described and symbolized by the stone, is raised up not in the days of Augustus or Tiberius, much less in those of Constantine, but in the days of the decem-regal division of the Roman Empire. (Compare Dan. 7:7-14,23-26; Rev. 17:7-14.) The first exercise of its power is to break in pieces and consume all existing empire; all, at least included in the prefigurations of the statue. There is no such idea as the gradual action of the stone upon the statue; but a sudden and decisive judgment, which crumbles the statue into dust; after which, the stone which smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth. Evidently this is not the gospel which wins souls to Christ, and saves them; it is not a revolution, moral or material, which man brings about. It is nothing less than the power of God administered by the Lord Jesus; the stone cut without hands, dealing with the powers of the world, and judging their final antichristianism, in order to make way for His own manifest and immediate dominion. " And the Lord shall be King over all the earth: in that day shall there be one Lord, and His name one." I would add my opinion, that " these kings," symbolically set forth, by the toes here, and by the ten horns in Dan. 7, pertain exclusively to the West or European part of the Roman Empire. For we must leave room for the destruction of what is represented by the gold, silver,' and brass, no less than for the portion of iron and clay.
THERE IS ONE BODY." EPHESIANS. 4: 4.
PH 4: 4-4:32{)If our readers will dispassionately inquire into the testimony of God's word, I am persuaded that they will distinguish, as Scripture does, between the saints of the old Testament and those who are now being baptized by the Holy Ghost into one body. The question of the one body really turns on that baptism. For those only who are baptized of the Spirit constitute that body (1 Cor. 12:13); and it is certain that this baptism did not exist before the day of Pentecost. (Compare Acts 1 and 2.) No one denies that the Old Testament saints were born of the Spirit, that they were justified by faith, or that we are to sit with them in the kingdom of heaven.
But the New Testament shows that a corporate unity, over and beyond their common privileges, was formed by the descent of the Holy Ghost consequent on the accomplishment of redemption by the Lord Jesus Christ; and this solely is called the " one body." Eph. 2, 3, 4. are most explicit as to this.
None are contemplated as members of this one new man, save those in whom the Holy Ghost dwells, and so unites to a glorified Head in heaven. For the union here spoken of is an actual subsisting fact, and therefore incapable of being predicated, as it never is in Scripture, of saints previously. They had righteousness imputed to them, as it is to us; but the Holy Ghost was not then sent down, as he is now, to baptize Jews and Gentiles that believe into one body.
Further, I am of opinion that Heb. 12, distinguishes in the most positive way between " the spirits of just men made perfect" (i.e. the Old Testament saints) and the " church of the first born, which are written in heaven." So that this text, with 1 Cor. 12 and Eph. 2-4, contradicts the ordinary confusion on the subject.

Parable of the Virgins

Matt. 25:1-13.—Whether the lamps had gone, or were only going out, makes no real difference as to the grand teaching of the parable; and, as far as this goes, either the one or the other is quite compatible with the absence of oil. The statement that the foolish "have some oil" is most objectionable: not a word implies it; nay, what is said both by the wise virgins and the Lord would imply the reverse, even if we had not the plain and positive declaration that the foolish "took their lamps and took no oil with them." Why might not wicks be lit, and relit, without oil? I agree that " are going out" is a more correct rendering than the ordinary version; but it in no way shows that the virgins had oil, or that they were more than professors without the Holy Ghost, though responsible for and designated according to the position they assumed.
As to the unconverted being called "virgins," there is no more difficulty there than in the "servant" of the preceding parable. In either case they took that place, and were judged accordingly. There are Christians who love Christ's appearing in the midst of much ignorance as to its details. There are professors who talk much of the Second Advent, and hold it to be premillennial. But I assuredly believe that the former, if they are alive and remain till the coming of the Lord, will be caught up to meet Him, and that the latter, if they abide unregenerate, must have their portion outside, where shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
As unfounded is the idea that τάγματι in 1 Cor. 15:23,
means " company," " band," " regiment," while fully admitting of course that such is a frequent signification in profane authors. But here the context is decidedly adverse, whether τὸ τέλος be applied to the wicked dead, or to Christians uninstructed in the, Lord's second coming and kingdom. All or most of the versions at all known and accurate (as the Syriac, Vulgate, Beza, Luther, De Wette, Diodati, Martin, Ostervald, the Lausanne, etc.) seem to agree with the authorized version in giving " order." Indeed, the way in which our Lord's resurrection is introduced appears to me of itself to exclude such a translation; for His resurrection is the first step, which perfectly agrees with " order," but not with " company." Again, such a view necessitates the harshest possible construction of " the end" (τὸ τ6έλος), which, by a figure, must be tortured to mean the good (or bad) who are raised then; whereas, in truth, it is most plain that "the end" is really after the kingdom is given up, and, a fortiori, subsequent to all judgment. The white-throne judgment of the dead is one of the closing acts of the kingdom, after which cometh " the end." Lastly, it would be incongruous to suppose that after " they that are Christ's " rise, another regiment of Christ's should remain to rise. Not a class, but an epoch, is meant by "the end; " an epoch subsequent to the resurrection of the wicked and their judgment.

Greek Word Translated Forever, Dienekes

I am of opinion that εἰς τὸ διηνεχές, " forever," ought to be construed in this verse, not with
προσενέγχας θυςἱαν, but with ἐχάθισεν χ.τ.λ (i.e. with " sat down"). It is not exactly a question of the general sense, for there is good sense either way; and still less does it turn upon Greek construction, for the words might be taken before or after the verb or participle, as it seems to me. The real point is the special contrast of vers. 11, 12. Instead of offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, Christ has
offered once: instead of standing daily ministering for man, He has forever sat down at the right of God. Of course this expression, " forever," is not absolute, but relative to the work of atonement. He is seated in perpetuity before God, because His sacrificial work is done perfectly for man. As to the abuse, justly objected to, the aorist cuts off the force which Papists, and those who think with them, might give it, for where continuous offering is intended the present tense is employed, as in verse 1.

Fallen From Grace: Texts Misapplied or Misquotes, Part 1

Gal. 5:4.-Often quoted to prove that Christians may, by falling into sin, jeopard the life which they have got in Christ. But the text speaks of those who had appeared to receive the Gospel letting. slip the grand foundation of God's grace for ordinances, or, in other words, abandoning the ground of faith for religiousness.

The Hope of Righteousness: Texts Misapplied or Misquoted, Part 2

Gal. 5:5.-We through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith.
Not the hope of being justified; for by Christ all that believe are justified from all things. We are not waiting for righteousness, for we are made the righteousness of God in Christ; but we wait for the hope which is suited to such a righteousness, for a glorious resurrection or change, which is the only adequate complement of what we have already in Christ.
Eph. 1:10.-The " dispensation of the fullness of times" is often applied to God's present work in gathering the church, and connected with Gal. 4:4. But the bearing of the two texts is totally different. Gal. 4:4 refers to Christ sent here below; Eph. 1:10 to the administration which will be in His hands during the Millennium; the one a past fact, the other future, and both entirely distinct from the gathering of Jews and Gentiles, who believe in one body, which is now going on between these two points.
1: 23.-" The fullness of Him which filleth all in all;" not of God the Father, which the church is not nor can be, but the fullness or complement of Christ, viewed as the glorified heavenly man, whose body we area
2: 20.-Not Old Testament " prophets" and New Testament " apostles," but " apostles and prophets" of the New Testament, as is put beyond all doubt in chap. 3: 5, " as it is now revealed unto His holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit." It is a new work built on a new foundation, Jew and Gentile being now builded together for a habitation of God through the Spirit, which was not the case in Old Testament times.
3:15.-Not the whole family, as in the English Bible, but every family in heaven and earth, πᾶσα πατρία, χ.τ.λ., including, I suppose, all the varieties of intelligent creation in heaven and earth.
4: 3.-" The unity of the Spirit," meaning of the Holy Ghost, and not merely of our spirit.
5: 14.-The Scriptures alluded to seem to be Isa. 52 and 60., but the application here is clearly to believers slumbering among dead men or things, from which they are called to arise, that Christ may give them light, not life, which would be their first need as unbelievers. Let me add, that in the parenthetical ver. 9 the true idea and word is " the fruit of light is in all goodness," etc.
4: 2, 3.-St. Paul is not of course neutralizing the grand truth that we are not under law, but under grace. He is simply showing how specially God owned obedience to parents among those commandments which were addressed to the Jews, and which held forth earthly blessing as their reward.
1 Cor. 9:27.-Often used to show that no believer ought to be or can be sure of ultimate salvation: hence, as is alleged, St. Paul was not. But it is clear that the question here is not of life, righteousness, or salvation, but of services in the Gospel and its rewards. Paul did not make himself servant unto all, under law to the Jew, without law to the Gentile, to save himself, but to save them. It was for the Gospel's sake, not for his own; and to this end serve the figures of a prize and a crown. The word άδόχιμος, here translated a " castaway," and elsewhere "reprobate," "rejected," is I think limited by the subject-matter. A servant might by carelessness lose a reward, who nevertheless as a believer had everlasting life. See
1 Cor. 3:10-15; 1 Cor. 11:28; 2 Cor. 13:5.-These texts are sometimes quoted to show that a Christian ought not to be sure, or, as men say, too sure of his acceptance with God. But it is evident that the first was intended to lead the Corinthians to probe their hearts, when disposed to deal lightly with the supper of the Lord. No such thought occurs as an exhortation to doubt God's grace, or their own security thereby. To eat the bread or drink the cup lightly without consideration of what that solemn feast sets forth was to deal unworthily: if one discerned not the body, it was to eat and drink judgment to oneself, as was shown in many cases of judicial sickness and death among them. For if Christians discerned themselves, i.e. the hidden springs of their hearts and ways, they should not be thus judged; yet even where they were, it was the Lord's chastening, that they should not be condemned with the world. Even where thus negligent and chastened, neither does the Lord confound the Christian, nor ought the Christian to confound himself, with the world. If he does, the true power of self-judgment is gone. Still more explicit is 2 Cor. 13:5, however familiarly used in the school of doubt. For let the context be read, and it will be plain that Paul is proving his apostolate to the Corinthians, who were seeking a proof of Christ speaking in him. Why, says he, examine yourselves: your own selves are the best proof. If you are in the faith, I must be an apostle-at least to you. (Cf. 1 Cor. 9:2,3.) The very last thing which these high-minded questioners meant to do was to distrust their own Christianity. Well, but, argues St. Paul, if you want a proof about me, know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? Paul had no wish to prove them reprobates; but his argument leaves them no escape. If they were in the faith, which neither they nor he doubted, they proved his apostleship: if they were not, who were they to examine him? If verse 4 be taken parenthetically, the sense is clearer.
2 Cor. 6:14.-Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers-often applied to marriage with unbelievers. But this is an error, though it is true that marriage ought to be " only in the Lord," as is exhorted in 1 Cor. 7 The subject is the ministry or service of Christ. In service and worship, fellowship is forbidden with unbelievers, or unfaithful men. If I, a servant of Christ, am among such, I am to come out. What confirms it is-1st, That a yoke is a scriptural badge of service, not of marriage. 2d, That the believing wife is not to be separate from her unbelieving husband (1 Cor. 7:10-16). On the other hand, the true inference from 2 Cor. 6 is that all communion between the Christian and the world, in the service and worship of God, is interdicted in every form and measure.

The Work of the Spirit: Texts Misapplied or Misquoted, Part 3

The injunctions in Eph. 4:30, and Thess. 5: 19, do not apply to all men, but are addressed to believers only. The former warns those who are sealed by the Holy Ghost unto the day of redemption not to grieve Him; the latter exhorts the brethren to " quench not the Spirit;" to " despise not prophesyings." It is clear that the one regards the saint individually as to his own walk with God; the other guards him against hindering the action of the Holy Ghost in those whom He makes His mouthpiece. The striving of God's Spirit in Gen. 6 evidently refers to the testimony given to the antediluvians, and especially Noah's preaching for 120 years. Resisting the Holy Ghost is said of the Jews: "as your fathers did, so do ye." It was shown in their persecution and slaughter of the prophets, and crowned by their treachery against and murder of the Just One. With all their boast about the law, the land, and the temple, they had rejected in every age God's testimony: "Ye do always resist the Holy Ghost." What man had done before the" deluge, was the dreary history of Israel, till they stumbled upon their own Messiah, refused Stephen's declaration of His heavenly glory as peremptorily as they had scorned his own personal humiliation, and thus turned that which ought to have been a foundation into a stone of stumbling and rock of offense. But it was not the Jew only who was guilty. "He was in the world, and the world knew Him not." "Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out." The personal coming of the Holy Ghost testifies of this. His very presence in the church on earth convicts the world of sin, etc. For He came down, as sent by Him whom the world had rejected instead of believing in. Of other sins no doubt the world was guilty, but this was the great sin in God's sight. He had sent His Son, and the world hated His Son. They had now no cloak for their sin. Christ, rejected by man, glorified by God, sends down the Comforter to be in His own, and thus convicts all outside of sin; because if they believed in Him, they too would have the Holy Ghost. The passage does not speak of what the Spirit produces in the
heart of every one who comes to a saving knowledge of God and His Son. It is rather the truth that the presence of the Holy Ghost in the church proves all without to be under sin and judgment, because of the rejection of Jesus, whom God proclaims to be the Righteous One, by receiving Him to His own right hand. May I recommend " a well-digested and full reply on this subject," in a little book entitled " Operations of the Spirit of God"? More details still may be found in " Lectures on the New Testament Doctrine of the Holy Spirit."

The Two Ministries

Ex. 34:7.-The Gospel plan of salvation is not in the text, it is really the proclamation of the name of Jehovah in His government of Israel. Indeed it is rather a part of that which is contrasted in 2 Cor. 3 with the ministration of the Spirit now. There was a precious manifestation of God's goodness and long suffering, no doubt; but it was in connection with His people still under the law. Hence, in spite of all the mercy displayed, it could only be in result a ministration of condemnation and death. Whereas the essence of the Gospel is, that it comes to the sinner on the very ground that he is lost, and most expressly justifies the ungodly: it is a ministration of righteousness already accomplished on earth and accepted on high. So that, if the Holy Ghost reveal to any soul Christ in glory, that soul is entitled to look up and say, "There is my life and my righteousness." He is accepted in the Beloved. " If that which was done away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious." The two things are so distinct that to harmonize is to spoil them both.

Life in Christ Risen

Rom. 8:1.-It may help the reader to bear in mind the observation of another, that the apostle, in the beginning of this chapter, is alluding to and summing up his previous reasoning. Thus, verse 1 answers to chap. 5.; verse 2. to chap. 6.; and verse three to chap. vii; as a moderate degree of attention and spirituality may easily discern.
"Justification of life" is what the first verse supposes, the possession of a new and risen life in Christ, to which sin is not and cannot be imputed. When God sent forth His Son he was made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem, etc. But now that redemption is accomplished and Christ raised from the dead, it is not merely the holy life which it always was, but it is life in resurrection after all the question of sin is settled. It is riot merely justification in view of a foreseen work, nor a standing on the ground of promise-the promise of One who could not lie. The work is done, the promise accomplished-all the promises of God yea and amen in Christ: according to this is our standing as individual saints in Christ Jesus, and of this Rom. 8 treats. Corporate union is not discussed save in chap. xii. But many of our individual privileges, as well as our corporate ones, could not have been predicated of believers till Christ had finished His work on earth and sent down the Holy Ghost from heaven. I suppose (in spite of A D² and some good versions that have μὴ χατὰ σ. π. or D² E I K, etc., for ἀλλἀ χ. πν.) that the last clause was added to guard the full grace from verse 4, where the same words rightly occur.

The Love of Christ to the Church

Eph. 5:26.-To understand this verse it must be taken in connection with what precedes and follows.
1. Christ loved the church, and gave Himself for it. His blessed work of redemption already accomplished.
2. That He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word. His present work, which the Holy Ghost makes good in the church. Eν ρηματι guards and explains
τῳ λουτρῳ, showing that it is the power of the word, and not a mere rite. Compare John 15 " Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken to you."
3. The result, yet future, when He shall present to Himself the glorious church, not having spot, etc.

Mount Zion

Heb. 12:23.-The phrase "general assembly " (πανηγύρει) is clearly, in my judgment, epexegetic of the preceding words, "the innumerable company of angels," just as, in the clause before, "the heavenly Jerusalem " is a further explanation of "the city of the living God." The conjunction χαί introduces each new clause, which arrangement is destroyed in this particular instance, but observed in all the other parts of the sentence in the English Bible. The same confusion appears in Beza, Diodati, the Dutch, Martin, Ostervald, the Lausanne, etc. Bengel rightly objects to this construction. "Nam et polysyndeton retinendum est; et aliorum sine dubio est panegyris: aliorum, ecclesia, quis enim conjungeret synonyma, panegyris et ecclesia? Ecclesia, primogenitorum est; panegyris igitur; angelorum." But then he falls into the mistake of making, not only the angels, but the church of the first-born ones refer to the myriads, which is equally, as it seems to me, contrary to the linking of each separate term by the conjunction, not to speak of other objections. The Syriac and Vulgate, with those that follow them, Luther and the Elberfeld, avoid either error, and give the true sense with more or less clearness.
The apostle ascends from the lowest point of millennial glory which unites heaven and earth, the seat of royalty raised up in pure grace (after Ichabod was written on Israel, and the king of their choice was slain), in contrast with Sinai, which was the place and expression of the nation's responsibility. He then
words in John 6:51 (εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα) are the commonest possible expression of eternity, or "forever," whether absolute or relative, which of course depends on the context and nature of the case. See Matt. 21:19; Mark 3:29;11: 14; Luke 1: 55; John 4:14; 6: 58, 8: 35, 51, 52; 10: 28; 11: 26; 12: 34, 13: 8; 14: 16; 1 Cor. 8:13; 2 Cor. 9: 9; Heb. 6:20;7: 17, 21, 24, 28; 1 Peter 1:23,25; 1 John 2:17; 2 John 2; which are, I think, all the occurrences in the New Testament. Εἰς αἰῶνα (in 2 Peter 2:17) has been dropped by some editors, though even they admit the same phrase in Jude 13. The omission of the article implies that the phrase is characteristic, i.e. adjectival of the sense; and "everlasting," as "forever," pertains to τοῦ σχότους, rather than to the verb. The plural form often occurs, as in Rom. 1:25; 9: 5; 11: 36; 16: 27;
2 Cor. 11:31, etc.; or with πάντας, as in Jude 25; or yet more emphatically εὶς τοὺς αἰῶνας τῶν αἰῶνω, as in Gal. 1:5, and often elsewhere. The idea here is not so much one unbroken eternity (expressed by the singular, simple or complex, as in Heb. 1:8), as the constant succession of age upon age, which is pretty well given in the English " forever and ever." Eph. 3:21 is the most peculiar of all; for γενεάς expresses ordinarily human generations, τοῦ αἰῶνος of itself would convey the thought of an undivided everlasting; and τῶν αὶώνων closes the series with successive ages sweeping on. The whole phrase intimates, I suppose, a future beyond the bounds
of every measure of time. The anarthrous form εὶς αἰῶας αἰώνων occurs in Rev. 14:11 (where, however, C. has αὶῶνα αἰῶνος), which, as we have seen, modifies the sense so far as to present no positive object before the mind, as in Rev. 19:3, and simply in this case characterizes the action of the verb.

The Seventy Weeks of Daniel

Dan. 9-I do not think that there need be difficulty in supplying the Scripture authority, which has been sought in vain, for the break between the last week and its predecessors. In fact, the prophecy itself distinctly furnishes the proof. For after the details relative to the periods of seven and of sixty-two weeks, in verses 25, 26, and the plain statement, that after these times were completed the. Messiah should be cut off and have nothing (i.e. of His proper kingdom and rights, as far as the nations were concerned), the prophet goes on to describe the retributive days of vengeance which fell upon the city and the sanctuary through the Roman people (or "the people of the prince that shall come"). Now, it is clear, that here we have events which took place about forty years after the crucifixion, and yet entirely apart from the seventy weeks, save that they necessarily occurred after sixty-nine had run their course. But if they form no part of the previous chain, as shown by the prophecy, with equal certainty are they outside from and before the last or seventieth week, which presupposes the Jewish polity re-established in some sort, and the sanctuary pot only rebuilt but in actual use once more, though doomed again to see greater abominations than before. I am confident, therefore, that the Scripture authority of Dan. 9 is, beyond reasonable doubt, against those who make the seventieth week to be in immediate sequence with the preceding sixty-nine, and that the passage itself, without going further, requires us to leave room for (not merely the past Roman destruction of Jerusalem, but) a prolonged series of wars and desolations of indefinite duration, which has been thus far too truly accomplished; subsequently to this, in verse 27, we have the brief but vivid picture of the last week ushered in by a compact or covenant made between the last Roman prince (" the prince that shall come ") and the mass of the Jews; then, in the midst of the week, a stop put to their sacrificial worship, idols protected, and a desolator inflicted upon them, and this till the consummation and the decreed sentence be poured upon the desolate. Thenceforward should the tide turn, through the presence and power of their Deliverer, once rejected but now returning in glory, not only to destroy this antagonist Roman sovereign with all his instruments and followers, Jewish or Gentile, but to apply to Israel, as such, all the predicted blessings of the new covenant. For such was the intimation of verse 24: " Seventy weeks are determined upon thy (Daniel's) people and upon thy holy city (the question being about the Jews, and not the church), to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins," etc. Accordingly, I think it demonstrable that all which God has been doing for and in His heavenly people since the cross is here entirely and advisedly passed by; and this is, no doubt, what is meant by "the parenthetical dispensation of the church." It may be added that this view of a detached seventieth week, reserved for the horrors of the future antichristian crisis, can in no way be objected to on the score of novelty, save by the ignorant: it is really the oldest interpretation that I know on record among the early Christian writers. Thus writes St. Hippolytus in the third century: Τῶω γὰρ ἑξήχοντα δύο ἑβδομάδων πληρωθειςῶν χαὶ Χριστοῦ παραγενομένου, χαὶ τοῦ εὐαγγελίου ἐν πάντι τόπῳ χηρυχθέντος ἐχχενωθέντων τῶν χαιρῶν, μία ἑβδομὰς περιλειφθήσεται ἡ ἐν ἦ παρέσται Ἠλἰας,χαὶ ‘Ενώχ, χαὶ ἐν τψ ἡμίσει αὐτῆς ἀναφανήεσται τὸ βδεέλυγμα τῆς ἐρημώσεως, ἕως ὁ Αντίχριστος ἐρήμωσιν τῷ χόσμῳ χαταγγέλλων, χ. τ. λ." For when the sixty-two weeks have been fulfilled, and Christ has come, and the gospel has been everywhere preached, the times having been consummated, there shall be left one week-the last—in which Elias shall be present, and Enoch; and in the half of it shall appear the abomination of desolation, etc.

The Personal Reign

Without pretending to say what is meant by the expression " human kingdom," most readers will agree that, besides the sense in which Christ shall reign forever, there is a definite kingdom over all people, nations, and languages, a kingdom heavenly in its source, earthly in its sphere (though not earthly only), which is yet future, and to last for 1000 years. It is this which, I presume, the Querist meant by Christ's " human kingdom," to be ushered in by His personal advent. It has a mediatorial character, and will cease after the judgment of the wicked dead is over. When the eternal state begins (or the new heavens and earth in the fullest and final sense), the human holding of this kingdom is to cease (1 Cor. 10: 5.), that God (Father, Son, and Holy Ghost) may be all in all. Christ, as man, having held this special kingdom for purposes of subjection, and having put down all other authority, gives it up, that the power may be God's, as such, exclusively. Our reigning in life, reigning forever and ever, is not to be limited to the millennial kingdom. As possessors of eternal life and rejoicing in hope of the glory of God, we shall reign in everlasting blessedness, when the millennial display before this world is past.

The Leprous House

Lev. 14-While unfeignedly believing that all Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable, I may suggest the need of a careful comparison of the fresh light of the New Testament in lifting the veil of the Old. Thus it seems to me that due consideration of Eph. 2 and Heb. 3 would suggest the idea that "the house" finds its antitype in the corporate aspect or assembly of believers now, rather than in the millennial condition of the earth. "Ye are builded together," etc.; " whose house are we," etc. Hence all is plain. A plague spot may now show itself in the Christian assembly. There is diligent, painstaking, but patient inquiry. The diseased stones are removed, the application of which is obvious. If the plague still overspread, after all means are used in vain, the house must be given up; for the deliberate sanction and maintenance of evil deprives an assembly of its public Christian character. The mention of Canaan is no difficulty, because, in virtue of union with Christ by the Holy Ghost, we who believe are, even now, seated in heavenly places in Christ. Our πολίτευμα At (citizenship) is in heaven.

The King in Daniel

Daniel.-1. " The king," in Dan. 11:36, is, without doubt to my mind, the political side of the same person whom St. John designates religiously or irreligiously as "the Antichrist." It is clear from Daniel that his seat of power is "the Holy Land," the object of attacks at the close from the powers of the South and of the North (i.e. Egypt, and Syria or Turkey, of our days). However, his destruction is reserved for the Lord Himself, appearing from heaven (2 Thess. 2:8; Rev. 19:20). It is of the Syrian power (whoever then may hold it that the last verses of Dan. 11 speak. He also falls by Divine judgment (see Dan. 8: 25; 11: 45).
2. The relation of Daniel to the Revelation is a wide subject; but this I may briefly say, that, as Daniel reveals the results of the failure of the earthly people Israel, so Revelation presents the consequences of the failure of the heavenly testimony throughout Christendom and the world at large. This remark may help to show the analogy and the difference between the two prophecies. What the former was to the Jew, the latter is to the church.

The Vine and the True Vine

John 15: 4.-I do not think that living union with Christ is here spoken of, because verse 2 speaks of branches in Him not bearing fruit, which cannot be where Christ is the life. Compare also verse 6, which, if living union were in question, would contradict the everlasting life which the believer has. There is
some analogy thus far with Rom. 11, the olive-tree of testimony on earth, as the vine is of profession. Of course, in both cases, the saints are living branches; but there are other branches which are broken off. Oneness with Christ, as members of His body, depends on the baptism of the Spirit, which was unknown before Pentecost.

Our Conflict

Josh. 5:9.-With the Epistles to the Colossians and the Ephesians before us, I am of opinion that the wars of Israel have their answer in our wrestling with the powers of darkness; that the gradual acquisition of their land corresponds with our setting our affections on the things above, where Christ sitteth; and that we too have our circumcision, first in Christ, in whom the flesh has met its doom; and, secondly, in the practical way of mortifying our members which are upon the earth, etc. To neglect these cross-lights of the Old and New Testaments is to despise, unwittingly, the means of heavenly wisdom.
THE WORLD'S JUDGE.
Acts 17:30.-It is evident that the point of which St. Paul avails himself in order to reach the conscience of the Athenians is their own confessed ignorance of God (verse 23). " The times of this ignorance God winked at." But now St. Paul was declaring to them the God whom they knew not. The true God shines out in the death and resurrection of Christ. Not to receive what is proclaimed therein is to reject the counsel of God against oneself. Heathenism was essentially wrong; at the best it represented God as an hard master, as one (if one) who needed all that man could muster, instead of allowing Him the blessed place of the Giver, which even creation and providence proved Him to be, and much more redemption.
Accordingly, as the full light of God is shining the world over like the sun, and the sound of the Gospel is published in all the earth (in principle I mean), man is without excuse. For his case is not merely, like Israel's, failure under legal requirement, but the despisal of the full and free grace of God, who is now commanding all men everywhere to repent, to turn from their idols and their self-righteousness, from themselves in short to Him, and what He has demonstrated Himself to be in Christ towards the worst of sinners. To refuse is not merely to lose His everlasting mercy, it is also to brave His righteous judgment of this habitable world, for Christ is by Him ordained to judge it (and not only the dead raised before the great white throne), of which His resurrection is the proof. The world slew Him and God raised Him up, the sure proof that it is morally judged already, as it actually will be when. Christ comes in the clouds of heaven. Up to Christ's first advent, and especially His resurrection, the Gentiles lay hid, as it were, as to public relations with God. Salvation was of the Jews. Christ's resurrection is a groundwork for faith unto all, Gentile as well as Jew, for death cuts all specialties in the flesh. Hence the special call to repent ever since; always obligatory, repentance is now urgent. So as to the day for judging the habitable world: the preached resurrection of Christ, who is about to judge it, puts men under fresh responsibility.

God's Earthly Center

Deut. 32:8.-The truth taught is plainly confirmed by the rest of the Old Testament, that Israel is God's earthly center, around whom the nations are yet to revolve, when the Messiah takes His kingdom here below; for the Jews (not the church, which has higher hopes) are the objects of God's counsels, as regards the earth and the nations.

The Author of the Epistle to the Hebrews

There are not wanting those who reject the commonly received opinion that St. Paul wrote this epistle. It may therefore be interesting to look at the historic proof of Paul being the writer.
There are several particulars relating to the personal history of the writer:-
1. He was not one of our Lord's disciples, and probably did not know Christianity till after our Lord's ascension (Heb. 2:3). St. Paul we know was converted after the ascension of our Lord. (Acts 9)
2. The epistle was, written from Italy (13: 24). Paul was in Italy for some time.
3. The writer mentions some hindrance which prevented his leaving Italy (13: 19). This agrees with what we know of Paul, who was in prison there (2 Tim. 1:16).
4. The writer desired the prayers of his brethren for the removal of this hindrance (13: 19). This is conformable to the custom of Paul in his other epistles (Rom. 15:30; Eph. 6:19).
5. The writer knew of Timothy's release from prison. Paul mentions this in 1 Tim. 6:12.
6. Timothy was not with the writer in Italy, but was shortly expected (13: 23). This agrees with what we know of the situation of Paul when in prison (2 Tim. 4:9).
7. The writer looked forward to traveling with Timothy to visit the Hebrew Christians. Timothy was Paul's constant companion in travel Here, then, are several particulars respecting the writer of the epistle, all of which agree with what we know of the history of St. Paul, but do not suit with what is known of any other eminent New Testament saint. It is highly improbable therefore that any other New Testament writer but. Paul wrote this epistle.
Further: to none of the assigned writers do all the circumstances here noted suit, as far as we are acquainted With their histories. We know not that Apollos or Barnabas was ever in Rome, or suffered imprisonment there for the truth's sake. Luke and Clemens were in Rome, but we have no information of their having been imprisoned there; and further, neither were Jews (Col. 4:11,14), which it is probable the writer of this epistle was. In the absence of certainty, there is evidence enough; from the personal remarks of the writer, to lead us to the conclusion that Paul wrote this epistle. [2 Peter 3:15 seems to me decisive that Paul wrote to the Jewish saints; and this of course is no other than "Hebrews."-.Ed.]

The Land Shadowing With Wings

Isa. 18:7.-1. "The land shadowing with wings, which (is) beyond the rivers of Cush," means, I think, a country outside the limits of those nations which up to the prophet's time had menaced Israel; a country beyond Assyria and Babylon, which were contiguous to one of these rivers and beyond Egypt, which lay along the other. For Scripture connects Cush with these two districts, if not with more: an Asiatic as well as an African Ethiopia. The meaning is, then, a land which should essay to protect the long-oppressed Jew, and that land beyond those rivers which characterized the great powers which hitherto were best known to and had most interfered with Israel.
It was not only a distant but a maritime power (" sending ambassadors by the sea "). " Vessels of bulrushes " looks more like Egypt than anything else in the chapter, but it cannot outweigh the other evidence. Perhaps others may throw light on the phrase. The burden of Egypt follows, and is expressly named in the succeeding chapter. Here the name is withheld.
It is distinguished in the plainest way from the nation in whose behalf it employs its vessels and swift messengers. I cannot therefore but think those commentators far astray who interpret the land in verse 1, and the people to whom the message is sent in verse 2, of Egypt and the Egyptians. Happily here the question depends not on mere verbal criticisms, but on the general bearing of the context, which the English reader is quite capable of judging.
There is no doubt on either side that the same people to whom the messengers are sent are described in the latter part of verse 2, as well as in verse 7. The words which characterize them are certainly open, in their force and translation, to a good deal of dispute. Few, however, will be disposed to accept the notion that מְמֻשׇׁךְ= " harnessed in leather," which has not the least support from elsewhere. It is used in Prov. 13:12, of hope prolonged or deferred. Other forms of the same word occur frequently in the Bible, and mean to draw (literally or figuratively), stretch out, continue. Gesenius gives it here the sense of duraturus, robustus, which seems to me not to harmonize with the conjoined word. The English translators may have given the Gesenius gives it here the sense kal participle (poel) means "him that soweth" (marg. draweth forth) seed in Amos 9:13. I rather think the term alludes to the long trials and painful suspense of the Jews, and this seems confirmed by וּמו֗רׇמ, "and peeled" or made bare, rather than " shaven;" for, in such an application, the word is used only of cases where the hair was fallen off
(Lev. 13:40,41), or forcibly plucked off (Ezra 9:3; Nehem. 13: 25; Isa. 1: 6). The sense of "peeling" the shoulder occurs in Ezek. 29:19, which would yield the same figurative sense, the latter being taken from the skin as the former from the hair. "Furbished" or polished is the general sense when spoken of the sword, metals, etc., and Gesenius thence derives the tropical meaning which he assigns to the word here, "populus acer h. e. celer, vehemens;" a highly improbable turn in my opinion. The general bearing of the next clause remains undisturbed. What follows is literally "a nation of a line, a line," which Dathe
connected, I presume, with Isa. 28:10, and our translators with chap. 25: 17; 34:11, 17; and Lam. 2: 8. Either of these, and the last particularly, I consider preferable to the far-fetched allusion to land-measuring, which, it will be observed, causes some to change "nation " into the " country ' meted out;" which is the more surprising and inconsistent, because in the sentence before it was justly remarked that it was the people, not the country. The same term נּו֗י is used in both cases. I have no doubt whatever that וּמְבוּםׇה קַויקׇו describes not their vast strength, trampling down all before it (as Gesenius will have it), but rather their obnoxiousness to every form of hostile appropriation and indignity. (Compare Isa. 22:5;28. 4.) This is confirmed and determined by the last words of the verse, whether we adopt the textual rendering or the margin of the English. Bible, or even Gesenius's theory of "cleaving," which he finds, though to my mind with slight show of evidence, in the word. Still any of these seem to me incomparably better than a fancied allusion to "inundation," which has really nothing to favor it, any more than the fancy that the previous words refer to the practice of sending pigs or goats to tread down the seed under their feet. I hope to be pardoned for considering them both an unlawful importation into this text. All these mistakes flow out of the first great error of treating the people under debate as the Egyptians. To this I may add that מֵעֵבֶר. ("beyond") is made to mean "on this side," quite untenably, though at first sight there might seem more reason for it, especially in the English Bible. However, there is no space here to trace in what circumstances the word is susceptible of that force. I can only say that "beyond," as it is the natural, so here seems to me the true meaning. It is only in very special cases that we can give the other rendering, and the reason must be shown before it can be assumed.
5. As regards the intervening verses, 3-6, all are summoned to see and hear what befalls the people of the Lord, Israel. He, as it were, retires, and watches. Man is active. The Jews, brought back by human intervention, seem to flourish; but suddenly, " afore the harvest," all is arrested, and disappointment comes. The nations turn once more against the Jews. "They shall be left together unto the fowls of the mountains, and to the beasts of the earth." Compare the chapter before, especially verses 9-14.
6. "In that time shall the present be brought unto the Lord of Hosts of a people scattered and peeled, and from a people terrible from their beginning hitherto; a nation meted out and trodden under foot, whose land the rivers have spoiled, to the place of the name of the Lord of Hosts, the Mount Zion," -Here, waiving the question of. the terms repeated from verse 2, and already discussed, I think the English version is more accurate than most others. For there are in verse 7 not two peoples, but two things taught about Israel; that a present should be made (1) of them, and (2) from them, to Jehovah of Hosts. The Jewish nation should be brought a present, and they should also bring one to the Lord in Mount Zion, after their signal deliverance from the fury of the Gentiles.

This Generation

Matt. 16:28.-I am of opinion that the application of these words to the destruction of Jerusalem is entirely unfounded, and that their true connection is with the scene of the transfiguration. They are consecutive in all three of the first evangelists; and 2 Peter 1 treats that scene, it appears to me, as a manifestation of Christ's power and coming,-a sample of His future glory. James and Peter did taste of death, the one long, and the other shortly before Jerusalem was destroyed.
Dean Alford is not correct in making ἠ γενεὰ αὕτη = " this race," because the race of Israel is not to pass away when all these things are fulfilled; but, on the contrary, Israel is then to reach its full blessing and glory as a people here below. The true force is, " this" (Christ-rejecting, unbelieving) " generation of Israel," not the mere existing generation, but such as bore the same moral fruits as those who then refused the Messiah. So they have continued, and will, till after the last delusions and judgment of Antichrist, when " there shall come out of Sion the deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob." " So all Israel shall be saved," when every threat of God has been accomplished, and grace has converted a new generation" the generation to come." The moral bearing Of the phrase, permit me to add, simply and satisfactorily accounts for God's righteous judgment, in consequence of the blood shed from Abel downwards. Dean A.'s remark is sound against the application of it to the mere existing generation; but it almost equally disproves his own sense. Those who stood in the place of witness for God, as did Israel, not only suffered the consequences of despising His last testimony to them in Christ, but had required of them all the righteous blood shed from the beginning downwards. The same principle applies to Babylon in the Revelation: " In her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth." In consequence of the position assumed, God will hold her responsible even for evil done before her existence. It is the principle of God's corporate judgments. Individually, each bears his own judgment.

Guilt and Grace

Rom. 5:15-17.-No exposition of this passage which I have seen has appeared to me quite satisfactory. My opinion is, that every one of these verses contains a separate thought, which is fitted, by its position and progression, to magnify the grace of God. The apostle is illustrating the leading truth of the Christian system, justification by divine righteousness accomplished in Christ; and, in order to establish conclusively the gratuitous nature of it, he draws his illustration from the way in which we became guilty, viz. by the guilt of Adam's first sin. As we are reckoned by God, and treated, as in fact guilty persons, before we do anything personally to involve us in guilt, so we are reckoned by God as righteous persons, and are treated as such, before we do anything to make us righteous. There is thus a striking analogy or resemblance between guilt and grace -the fall and the restoration. But the apostle begins to show, at verse 15, that this analogy does not hold in all respects: " But riot as the offense so also is the free gift." This he does by showing that the side of the parallel formed by materials drawn from the new and gracious dispensation is the broader, deeper, and more outstanding and noticeable. It illustrates grace superabounding and triumphing over guilt in three particulars 1. In its provision (verse 15); 2. In its communication (verse 16); and 3. In its consummation (verse 17).
1, The Source.-Verse 15 points us to the fountain-head or source of sin and righteousness; of guilt and grace. There is evidently a comparison of stocks or stores in this verse; and grace gets a triumph over guilt when we look to Jesus, in whom, as in a storehouse, all fullness of it dwells. If we are condemned for the sin of Adam, a mere creature like ourselves, shall we not much More be justified by grace for the sake of the Divine One, Jesus, who is "full of grace and truth"? If natural connection with the creature has brought us so much evil, much more shall spiritual connection with the God-man, Jesus Christ, bring us good.
2. The Communication.-Verse 16 shows that the communication of grace far exceeds the communication of guilt. Adam shares what is his with his race, so Christ shares what belongs to Him with. His seed; but the righteousness which believers enjoy in Him covers far more than the guilt they inherit from Adam, for by Christ we are justified not only from the guilt of this one sin, but also from the aggravated guilt which
we have contracted by our " many offenses," i.e. all our sins. Besides, we were involved in Adam's guilt by generic necessity; we are put in possession of righteousness in Christ as " a free and gracious gift."
3. The Consummation.-Verse 17. Here we have the rich excess of grace over guilt in its consummation, or in what it will do for believers when communicated to them and possessed by them. The point contained in this verse is this: If all connected with Adam are made subject to death for his one offense, much more shall all connected with Christ (who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of justification) not only have their original condemnation to death removed, but also reign in life with Him, on account of His obedience even unto death, and his resurrection, as their representative and living head, to the enjoyment of an endless life. Their connection with Jesus not only frees them from death, but it gives them a right to life, not only here, but in the glorious kingdom to come: " Being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life." He is now possessed of an ever-during life in resurrection, and all believers are sharers with Him in this life, for " He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life." Just as death began in Adam the moment he sinned, so life begins, in believers the moment they believe in Christ: ". God hath given unto us eternal life, and this life is in His Son." And as the time is fast approaching when Jesus, the Son of God, who once suffered for sins, shall return to reign, all His saints shall then reign in life with Him: "For as in Adam all die, so in Christ shall all be made alive." "Thou hast redeemed us, and made us unto our God kings and priests, and we shall reign on the earth."
The analogy being thus explained, limited, and illustrated, the apostle resumes his argument, and sums up the whole matter in verses 18 and 19, which contain his main position, which, in nearly the words of these verses, may be thus stated:-" As by one offense of one all connected with that one are condemned; so by the accomplished righteousness of one all connected with Him have `justification of life.' For as by the disobedience of the one (the representative) the many (the represented) were constituted sinners, so by the obedience of the one (the representative) will the many (the represented) be constituted righteous."
I should be glad to see the above passage in Romans thoroughly examined by you and your correspondents. It is one of the most vital, seeing that it forms the keystone of the gateway of grace. [See a paper by another writer at p. 348. -Ed.]

Love and Love

John 21.15-17.-I do not think that the student will get much satisfaction by reading the remarks of the late Dean Alford on this affecting scene. There is more, perhaps, in what the Archbishop of Dublin, Dr. Trench, has observed in his New Testament Synonyms. But the true difference seems to me much more simple than either of these gentlemen apprehend. 'Aγαπάω, is the broad, generic term for loving. It is susceptible of all applications, of superiors, inferiors, and equals. It is predicated of God towards man, and of man towards God. It describes God's feeling towards the world in giving His only begotten Son. It describes Christ's tender and full affection towards the church. On the other hand, φιλέω is a narrower word. It is distinctively the love of feeling, of endearment, and hence frequently it is used of the outward sign of fondness, and also in a vague way of that fondness which produces the habit of this or that action, though this is true of ἀγαπάω, too. Both are said of God's love to His Son. Dean A., if I remember rightly, considers that the Lord drops the word of reverential love (ἀγαπάω) which he had twice used, comes down to the word of human affection, Peter's own word (φιλέω), and this third time questions, not merely his loyal love for his master, but the very human regard of his heart. On the contrary, it appears to me, that while the Lord thoroughly judges Peter's confidence in his own love to Him, in its so exceeding that of others that he could stand where they fled, He not only hears Peter's repeated declaration of his true and near affection for Him, but Himself takes it up the third time, and that this, flashing on Peter's threefold denial, went to his inmost heart. The Greek concordance utterly dissolves the idea that reverential love is the dominant thought in ἀγαπάω. We are not called so to love our enemies, nor even our neighbors (Matt. 5:43,44;6. 24). Nor was it so that Christ loved the rich young man; and certainly none can pretend that God reverentially loved the world (John 3:16); and this is not a tithe, perhaps, of the absurdity that follows Dean A.'s distinction, if I understand him. As little can 9A.ir4 be reduced to the mere human regard of the heart.. It is not thus that the Father loves the Son (John 5:20), or even us (John 16:27); nor can anything be more opposed, as it appears to me, to the true scope of 1 Cor. 16:22; Titus 3:15; Rev. 3:19, where φιλέω occurs. Let the reader judge.

Shipwreck of Faith

1 Tim. 1:19,20.-There does not appear to be any real difficulty in understanding how a believer might concerning faith make shipwreck, more than in practical holiness. Surely this was exactly what befel the late Mr. Irving, not to speak of Tractarian or Popish perverts. There is no doubt but that godly discipline may take its course, even to the extreme act of putting away in the case of real Christians, if they have got under the enemy's power in conduct or doctrine. The proper sphere of discipline is within (i.e. in the circle of those who bear Christ's name). Them that are without God judgeth. Those who keep the true Feast are bound to put out leaven; and, if leaven in practice, still more in doctrine. For a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump. (Compare 1 Cor. 5 and Gal. 5)

The Life, Not Judgment, of the Righteous

There would be no point gained in supposing a universal judgment of all at the close; but, on the contrary, great loss in force of truth. In fact, the idea and expression " general resurrection" is itself fallacious: for resurrection is of all things the most separative. Even John 5 makes out two resurrections, irreconcilably differing in character and issues, as Rev. 20 shows them to be in time. The resurrection of life is in contrast with the resurrection of judgment (χρίσεως), and evidently, if involved in a common judgment; there would be no room for such a contrast. Matt. 25:34, etc., is essentially a millennial scene, not before nor after that epoch. Nor does it appear that any righteous die during the millennium, Isa. 65 speaking only of those judicially accursed. The Son of man's coming as a thief is nowhere connected with the rapture of the saints; but I say no more now, as this latter would involve discussion.

The First Jewish Mission

It is plain that the Lord, in this chapter, sends the twelve upon a mission specifically Jewish. " Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel " (Matt. 10) Afterward, in apprising them of the persecutions and treachery they were to expect, he bids them flee from one city to another: "For verily I say unto you, ye shall not have gone over (or finished) the cities of Israel till the Son of man be come." That is, their mission should be broken off, before it was complete, by the coming of their Master. Doubtless, another commission, expressly to the Gentiles, appears at the close of this Gospel, and the development of God's counsels, the mystery of Christ and the church, came out still latex', chiefly through the ministry and writings of the Apostle Paul. Thus the original Jewish mission was interrupted, and what has been aptly styled "the Gentile parenthesis" came in: this over, the Lord will, I doubt not, raise, at a yet future day, servants destined to take up the word and work now left in abeyance, and, ere they will have finished their proclamation of the approaching kingdom throughout all the cities of Israel, the Son of man will come. That work (wherever else the gospel has been carried) was not finished in the Apostolic era, nor will it be, when once more resumed in the latter day, before the Lord's return to establish the kingdom over the earth in power and glory.

The Least in the Kingdom of God

I do not think Luke 16:16 and Mark 1:1-4 intimate that John Baptist was " under the gospel dispensation." The kingdom of God might be said to be present in the person and power of Christ (compare Matt. 12:28, and Luke 17:21); but, as far as others were concerned, all that the Lord says on this head, and after John was put in prison, is, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand." It was not come for others to enter in till the work of redemption was accomplished, and then it was opened both to Jew and Gentile that believed. "Every man presseth into it," does not imply that any were yet within. It was being preached as nigh both by John and afterward by the disciples; but, whatever the saving mercy of God might have been in past times, and of course then also, it was still an object of search and desire till the cross and resurrection of the Lord. Then it was come, and every believer entered, and the accession of spiritual blessing and privilege was such, that the least in the kingdom was greater than the greatest before, even than John himself, near as he was to it as just at hand. We must bear in mind that, as to John's testimony in John 1:29-34; 3: 29, et seqq., it may have exceeded, more or less, his own intelligence as was often the case in the utterances of the Old Testament prophets. John Baptist did not know more than they, what it is to be purged worshippers, having no more conscience of sins. But this is only one of the many blessings that attach to all within the kingdom now.
I am aware that some, shrinking from the simple meaning because it traverses their preconceived thoughts, have sought to make ó μιχρότερος the least prophet, others (proh, Tudor) Christ himself; but such notions are unwarranted and untenable.

As Oracles of God

One is quite right in thinking that the apostle's word goes far beyond speaking according to the Scriptures, for a man might say nothing but what was scriptural, and not speak ὡς λόγια Θεοῦ. The passage implies that one should only speak when one has the certainty of uttering what one believes to be the mind of God. If there is not this confidence, one ought to be silent. It may be an artless message, possibly like that of Peter and John, displaying the speaker to be humanly ignorant and unlearned, and yet just the mind of God, suitable to the present need. This is to speak as oracles of God. Another might speak a word true in itself, but applicable to wholly different circumstances, warning where comfort was needed, instruction where the Spirit was rather calling out communion, or vice versa. To speak thus is not to speak as oracles of God. Of course, there is the other and equally imperative obligation on the part of those who hear, of examining all by the word of God.

Delivered From the Law

Rom. 7:4.-It may be allowed that, in the previous verses which speak of the matrimonial obligation, ceremonial and social laws are alluded to; but in illustration of what?
Clearly the Christian's relation to the law as a whole. Death severs the marriage tie: after that, there is liberty to belong to another. Just so, Christians are dead to the law by the body of Christ, who has in life accomplished it, and in death silenced all its claims for such as bad failed under it. Our position now is, that we belong to another, even to Christ risen from the dead. The fifth verse is clear and positive that the moral law is meant, for it was that especially which provoked the passions or motions of sins in our natural state. " But now we are delivered from the law, being dead to that wherein we were held," etc.
I do not deny that the righteousness of the law is fulfilled in the Christian, that he walks in the love of God and of his neighbor, which is the fulfilling of the law; but then it is because he is under grace, and not under law. He is not as a servant under this and that stipulation for so much wages; he is set free in Christ's death and lives in Christ's life as risen from the dead-a condition of life which the law cannot touch, however it may fulfill the righteousness of the law, and far more: for we are called to be followers of God in a way which the law never demanded. The Lord grant all his own to understand better their own blessings in His grace, that so their communion may be deeper and more heavenly, and their walk in the same proportion.

The Coming and the Day

2 Thess. 2:2.-It is quite right to distinguish between "the coming" and "the day of the Lord." They are not the same thing, though of course closely connected. Again, it is certain that ὲνέστηχεν means "is actually come," or "is present," and not " is at hand." But it is a mistake to assume that the Thessalonian saints then knew the relative order of these two things; and this ignorance on all sides gave occasion for the false teachers to trouble them with the cry that "the day of the Lord was there," which would have been trying enough, even with the thought of being caught up during or after it. This the Spirit meets by intimating that the coming precedes the day, which, besides, awaits a fuller development of evil.

Not Put Under Angels

Heb. 2:5.-There is no intimation that I can see that the world, under the old dispensation, was subjected to angels, but the statement that all things are put under the glorified man, even Jesus, already crowned, though now we see not yet all things put under Him. He is to be displayed the king of the world to come, the future habitable earth, and not of heaven merely. It is a negative statement, excluding angels, who were familiar to the Hebrew mind as the most exalted creatures known to them, from that government which pertains to the Son of Man, who had been already (in chap. 1.) shown to be, in a special sense, Son of God, yea God himself, the adored of all angels, the Creator.

Soul and Spirit

Heb. 4:12.-I think that, where distinguished as here, "soul" and " spirit " refer respectively to the seat of individuality and to that of capacity. Every man has both soul and spirit, and they are so linked and close that the word of God alone can rightly divide between their sometimes conflicting emotions and judgments. It judges all, searches into "the thoughts and intents of the heart." But then we have Christ as our high priest interceding for us, and maintaining us in spite of the sifting process, according to the value of His work.
EVERY FAMILY.
Ephesians 15.-Ti2au,rwrgui.,-Our translators were probably influenced by their theological views not to follow the grammatical rule, that πᾶς connected with a substantive without the article means every, not the whole. There is no doubt that "every family" is the right translation-embracing perhaps the various classes named in Heb. 12:22,23. And I am confident that the view thus sought to be maintained is a confusion of things that differ -all believers under every dispensation being taken together in the mass as " the church of God." But let scriptural proof be shown for the application of this term to any save the Jews and Gentiles baptized into one body between Pentecost and the Lord's second coming. The special features of "the Church," union with Christ in heaven by the Holy Ghost sent down thence consequent on His ascension-baptism of Jews and Gentiles by "one Spirit" into "one body "-the full enjoyment of the knowledge of God as " the Father "-are to be sought for in vain in either the past or future relationships of God with His earthly people Israel.
Moreover, while prizing the Psalms and other Old Testament portions of the word of God, I cannot agree that their language is equally applicable to our own position. "Now we know," says St. Paul quoting (Rom. from the Psalms, " that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law." St. Peter declares, " Of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you "-the Spirit of Christ in them testified beforehand of the sufferings of Christ and the glories that should follow, i.e. their knowledge of the way of salvation was only prophetic-a very different thing from that which is our blessing "the Gospel preached, with the Holy Ghost sat down from heaven "-the blessed witness to a fully accomplished work.
Scripture contradicts the idea that " the Spirit of adoption' indited the language of the Old Testament (see Gal. 4); and the condition under the law is expressly contrasted (2 Cor. with " the ministration of the Spirit."
Therefore the application to ourselves of many of the sentiments of the Old Testament saints would be most inappropriate to the full position of grace in which the believer now stands. The actual manifestation of the righteousness of God on behalf of the sinner-the conscience purged by the blood of Christ -the knowledge of justification through His resurrection, and consequent "peace with God" and the clear sunshine of "no condemnation "-such truths were unknown save in measure by anticipation under the age of the law, and form part of " the ministration of the Spirit."

Mercy

The reason for the introduction of " mercy " to Timothy and Titus, while St. Paul simply wishes grace and peace, in addressing churches (Philemon, because of the church in his house, coming under the last head), is plain. The church, or corporate thing, is viewed in its full privileges; the individual, however favored, recalls the thought of need day by day: "mercy" therefore is appropriate in the latter case rather than in the former.

Head of His Body the Church

Col. 1:18.-Christ 'only took the place of head of the church after redemption was effected, and in heavenly glory as its result, and the formation of what the Bible calls His body demanded this as a basis, and the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven as the power of its unity.
It must be borne in mind that, when Scripture speaks of the "one body," it is in reference to the earth. It is now, and on earth, that the saints are baptized by the Holy Ghost into one body, though I am far from believing that such a relationship will cease by and by in heaven.
It is as first-born from the dead that Christ is the beginning even though He was from everlasting the only begotten Son, and the Eternal Life with the Father. Hence said He to Peter who had confessed Him to be the Son of the living God, "Upon this rock I will build my church." It had not yet been built or begun to be built. The foundation was not laid: it was laid afterward in His death and resurrection.
Then ascending to heaven, He became the head, and the Holy Ghost came down in person to gather into union with Him as so risen and ascended. This and this only is what the New Testament designates His body; for, according to the figure, there could not be a body without and before the head.
The exceedingly precious mercies of God to all saints are unquestionable; and to some it may seem presumptuous to predicate peculiar privileges of those called since Pentecost. But, evidently, the question is one not of man's reasoning, nor of preconceived notions, but of God's word and will.
And it is plain that Ephesians and Colossians, not to speak of other Epistles, dwell much on certain blessings now conferred on the saints which never were enjoyed by, nor promised to, the Old Testament saints. They are the church's blessings brought out of God's treasury in this present dispensation, for the glory of Christ, and to show the riches of His own grace. The arguments of those who have assailed the point do not even touch the question, which they do not seem even to understand.

The Gift of God That Is in Thee

2 Tim. 1:6.-I apprehend that the common division of " gifts " (χαρίσματα) into ordinary and extraordinary is unscriptural, and calculated to mislead; for in one sense, and that a very real one, all the gifts are the affects of χάρις, " freely given of God," and not attained by man's labor. Scripture recognizes these things as quite distinct; first, the natural ability with its providential training, as the vessel; secondly, the gift of grace, which is received in due time by the chosen vessel; and thirdly, the use of means (as prayer, the word, meditation, hearing, etc.), that the gift be stirred up, and profiting appear. No doubt, the gifts which were signs have disappeared; but all needed for perpetuating, nourishing, and ruling the church abide " till we all come," etc.
I do not think that there is any difficulty in the apostolic communication of a \χάρισμα, when the Lord was so pleased. There was an express prophecy so directing it. in Timothy's case. In general the New Testament shows that such a channel was not necessary nor often employed, though it was sometimes in the wisdom of God. The same remark applies not merely to the χαρισματα, but to the δωρεά of the Holy Ghost (i.e. the Holy Ghost Himself given to believers in general). Occasionally this was associated with the imposition of apostolic hands, as in the case of Peter and John (Acts 8), and in Paul's case (Acts 19) But Acts 2 x., etc., are decisive that it would be an error to suppose anything of the sort to be the invariable rule. Hence, while God by times attached either the one or the other to the apostles, He maintained His own sovereignty all the while; and certainly He has not failed either in giving the Holy Ghost or in distributing such gifts as He sees fit to continue, and this directly, now that apostles are no longer found on earth. Rom. 1: 11 does not necessarily mean a ministerial gift.

Genesis

This first book of the Bible is the remarkable preface, as the Apocalypse is the equally striking conclusion, of the revelations of God. It presents the germ, in one form or another, of nearly all the ways of God and man, which we find separately developed in the suceeding books of Scripture; just as the Apocalypse is the natural close, presenting the ripened fruits even for eternity of all that had been sown from the first, the ultimate results' of every intervening interference of God and of His enemy. Thus, we have in Genesis the creation of which man is chief (1.); the principles of moral relationship with God and His creatures (2.); the temptation of Satan and his judgment by the seed of the woman; sin against God and man (and especially against Christ in type), sacrifice and worship, the world and the household of faith (3. 4.); the heavenly and the earthly testimonies to Christ's coming (5.); the apostasy of man (6.); God's warning by His Spirit and judgment in the deluge, with the salvation of a spared remnant in the ark, and mercy to the creature (7.); reconciliation in its relation to the earth and not to man only (8.); God's covenant with creation (9.); government and the history of the present world in its early rise and progress (10. 11.); the call and promises of God, and the history of the called (12.); the heavenly and earthly callings (13.); the Melchizedec priesthood (14.); the Jewish portion unfolded and confirmed, with the disclosure of long oppression previously from those who are to be specially judged (15.); the typical introduction of the law or Hagar covenant (16.); and the intervention of God's grace sealed by circumcision, and displayed in the heir of promise (17.); whose further announcement is linked with the divine judgment about to fall once more, and with intercession as the due place of those who, outside the evil, enjoy communion with God (18.); salvation so as by fire out of the tribulation and judgment which swallow up the ungodly (19.); failure of the faithful in maintaining their real relationship before the world (20.); the son of promise is born, and the child of the law, according to the flesh, is cast out, followed by the world's submission instead of reproof (21.) Then follows the grand shadow of Christ's death, as the provision of the Father's love, and His resurrection (22.); the covenant form of blessing disappears (23.); and the calling of the bride for the risen bridegroom ensues (24.) Finally is seen the sovereign call of him, afterward named Israel, who is identified with the sorrows,
wanderings, and ultimate blessing of that people (25.-1.); with the striking episode of his son Joseph, who is first rejected by his brethren after the flesh, and suffers yet more at the hands of the Gentiles; next is exalted (as yet unknown to his natural kindred) to the right hand of the throne; and lastly is owned in glory by the very brethren who had rejected him, but now owe all to his wisdom and majesty and love. Genesis is at once a book of matchless simplicity to him who glides over its surface, and of infinite depth to him who searches into the deep things of God.

The Hope Set Before Us

Heb. 6:18.-" The hope set before us" is the expectation of heavenly glory as secured and displayed in Christ exalted on high. Of course, the " hope " implies something yet to be done or manifested; though, being of God in Christ, it has not the smallest shade of uncertainity. This hope has present effects too " by the which we draw nigh to God." (Compare Heb. 10:23, which ought to be " hope " rather than "faith," as in the authorized version), as it ought to fill us with joy (Heb. 3:6). It is clearly in the future alone that all will be realized, and therefore it is justly called "hope:" still the work being finished, and Christ having entered within the veil, our hope is said to penetrate there too. That is, besides being sure for us and steadfast in itself, it is heavenly as entering into the immediate presence of God on the basis of the precious blood of Christ. It counts upon God fulfilling all He has promised, according to the faithfulness which has raised up Christ from the dead (like Isaac in the type), and set Him in the atmosphere of unchangeable blessing inside the veil. As Abraham had his son given back as it were, and the promise confirmed by an oath, so have we our hopes confirmed in a yet more precious way in Christ glorified above, though still having "need of patience."

The Transition Period

Rev. 5:9,10.-It is one of the special objects of the Revelation, as I judge, to disclose the position and intelligent worship of the heavenly saints, after they have been gathered to the Lord in the air, and previous to His epiphany, and this in connection with the intervening judgments set forth under the seals, trumpets, and vials. Another design is to show that even in those terrible days, "the end of the age," after the church has been caught up to meet the Lord, God will not leave Himself without a witness, but will, by His word and Spirit, commence a new work, suited to the times of special antichristian delusion. Daniel also (ch. 7.-12.) makes known to us saints involved in these same trials, but they are, I think, Jewish saints exclusively. St. John was the appropriate instrument to reveal a larger company of holy sufferers, and that from the Gentiles, " out of every kindred," etc. The countless multitude seen in
Rev. 7:9 et seqq. is out of all nations, but, as to time, restricted to "the great tribulation." This transition period, after the rapture of the church, and before the millennium, is one of great moment, and very little understood.

Son of God and Son of Man

I. The title " Son of God " is predicated of the Lord Jesus Christ in three different applications.
1. In the sense of His being born in time. This Psa. 2 sets forth: " Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee "-in connection with His kingship in Zion, presented to Israel's responsibility at His first advent, but postponed till His second, because of their then and present unbelief. So Isa. 9:6: " Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given." Compare Luke 1:32: " He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest, and the Lord God shall give unto Him the throne of his father David." And further, ver. 35: " Therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God."
"Son of God" as risen from the dead. Thus, Acts 13:33,34, shows Jesus in these two positions; ver. 33, as raised upon earth (" again" should be omitted here, as it is in ch. 3: 22, 26, the meaning both there and here being the Messiah born in this world); ver. 34, as raised up from the dead. See also Col. 1, where ver. 15 seems to refer to His birth into the world, where He necessarily was the first-born or chief of every creature, as being the Creator; and ver. 18, to His place of pre-eminence as risen, " who is the beginning, the first-born from the dead." Heb. 1: 5,6: ver. 5 speaks of Him in the first of these two positions; ver. 6, probably in the second, especially if the marginal rendering (which is most likely the correct one) be taken, which would connect His introduction into the habitable world with His second coming. Rev. 1:5 may confirm this.
Heb. 1:1,2,3, evidently speaks of our Lord as Son in the highest sense, that is, as divine. So almost everywhere in the Gospel and Epistles of St. John. " The only begotten of the Father" does not refer to His place as born on earth or risen from the dead, but expresses His eternal relationship as a divine person.
2. John 5 as it shows us the Son quickening whom He will in virtue of His divine glory, so it declares that all judgment is committed to Him as Son of Man. This title refers to His assumption of that nature in which He is first rejected, and secondly exalted as universal Lord and Judge. See Psa. 8, compared with Heb. 2; Dan. 7; the Gospels passim. Hence also He is seen as "the Son of Man" in connection with the judgment of the seven churches in Rev. 1 Hence cherubim as the witness of judgment were wrought on the veil, the type of His flesh.

The Parenthesis in Romans 5

Rom. 5:12-21.-Though I cannot but dissent from those who consider this a difficult passage, it is plain that it is often misunderstood, as it is certainly momentous in its bearings.
First, I am of opinion that the parenthesis is rightly marked so as to help the sense, 13-17 inclusively being one of those full and instructive digressions so characteristic of St. Paul.
Next, be it observed, that the apostle traces sin up to its source, beyond the Jew or the law. "By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all sinned." Sin was theirs through one; besides, all sinned too. It was not the law of which the Jews boasted which brought in sin; for it existed anterior to the Sinai covenant. And, though sin was not put to account, or imputed to man in God's government of the world before the law, still death reigned, the proof and wages of sin, even over those who did not transgress a known commandment like Adam (or like the Jews after the law was given). That is, while in the nature of things there might not be transgression between the two points of Adam and Moses, there was sin, and God marked His sense of it, for death reigned.
Now, if Adam were confessedly typical of the Messiah who was to come, should not the free gift be as the offense? For if by the offense of the one the many (the mass connected with him, who in this case were all mankind) died, much more did the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man Jesus Christ, abound unto the many. And shall not, as by one that sinned, be the gift? For the judgment was of one [thing] to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offenses to justification. For if by the offense of the one, death reigned by the one; much more shall those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness, reign in life by the one, Jesus Christ. This closes the parenthesis, nor could reasoning be more compressed in itself, or more conclusive to a Jew. For he, of all men, could not deny the sorrowful facts of Genesis, or the universal ruin entailed by Adam's sin. The principle then is conceded. From the beginning God had recognized something more than mere individualism. If the first and earthy man had sent down to all his family sin and death, why should not the second man, the Lord from heaven, transmit to His family righteousness and life? Verse 15 compares the persons or heads; verse 16 contrasts the things, or the judgment grounded on a single act with the state of accomplished righteousness (διχαίωμα) in spite of many offenses; and verse 17 presents the crowning result, the evident propriety that, if by the offense of one death reigned, how much rather should the last Adam's family reign in life through their glorious head.
Then, we have the general thread resumed with light and force derived from the parenthesis, and this in the most abstract way possible. "Therefore, then (in allusion to the intervening verses, but in direct reference to verse 12), as [it was] by one offense unto all men to condemnation; so also [is it] by one accomplished righteousness unto all to justification of life. For as by the disobedience' of the one man the many were constituted sinners, so also by the obedience of the one shall the many be constituted righteous." That is, verse 18 gives us the pure and simple tendency of Adam's offense on the one hand, and of Christ's righteousness on the other. The direction of the one, as of the other, was towards all men. But verse 19 adds the very important information that, whatever might be the scope of action in either case, the actual and definitive effect was a different matter. All men were not left in their ruin, nor were all, in result, delivered through Christ. Hence the change
from πάντες, to οἱ τολλοί, for it is mere ignorance to take them as equipollent. In certain circumstances they may mean the same persons, but the terms are invariably distinct in themselves. Thus, in verse 18, where "all" occurs, we have the universal aspect of the act, whether of Adam or of Christ; but in verse 19, where the positive application is treated of, we get " the many " who are in fact affected thereby.
But law did come: why it entered, and, as it were by the way, the apostle answers in verse 20. It was that (not sin, but) "the offense might abound." God forbid that anything God gave should be said to create evil! Sin being already there, the law came to bring out its real character as directly violating God's command when He gives one. "But where sin abounded, grace superabounded, in order that, as sin reigned in death, so also might grace reign, through righteousness, to eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord."
May I just say in closing, that the authorized version is clearly wrong in twice rendering εἰς πάντας ἀνθρώπους "upon all men "? In such a sentence it ought to be, " unto or towards all men." The distinction of εἰς and ἐπί strikingly appears in Rom. 3:22; where we have, first, the universal tendency of God's righteousness, by faith of Jesus Christ, and then, the actual application of it to all those who believe. This is accurately given in our Bible, "unto all," the first and general presentation, putting all under responsibility; and then, " upon all them that believe," the special portion of all such as believe; but the distinction is lost in the same version of chap. 5.

The Church

The Holy Ghost, in the Old Testament, brings before us either individual saints or a nation as the objects of God's favor and counsels. It is of that nation (Israel) that the Spirit uses the term "congregation" in the Old Testament, which our translators have given as the " church in the wilderness," in Acts 7:38. But Bishop Pearson admits, as indeed every fair man must, that this is a quite distinct thing from what is called " the Church of God," etc., in the New Testament. For the Epistle to the Ephesians, with great fullness, shows that the body of Christ, God's Church, is founded on the abolition of the distinction between Jew and Gentile, and, therefore, could not be till the cross broke down the middle wall of partition. Nor could believing Jew and Gentile be builded together for an habitation of God, till the Spirit came down in a fuller way than before, as the fruit of Christ's victory and ascension on high, where He took the new place of Head of the Church (not merely of King in Zion). When will they understand that this was an entirely new work of God, and that Scripture gives to this new assembly of believing Jews and Gentiles (bonded together by the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven in the name of Jesus) the name of "the Church of God"? It is not merely that the term " Church of God" is never, in the sense now spoken of, applied to the Old Testament saints; but the state of things could not be before Christ's death and resurrection as the basis, and the Holy Spirit's personal presence (not influence, gifts, etc., merely) as the power of this unity. It is founded on Christ exalted in heaven, after having accomplished redemption; and it is formed by that operation of the Spirit which not only quickens but unites Jewish and Gentile saints now to Christ in heaven and to each other on earth as one body.
Now, indubitably, such was not the case in the wilderness, nor in the promised land Jew and Gentile, whether believing or not, were rigorously severed by Divine command, and the saints were sustained by a promised Messiah, instead of resting on the accomplished work of a Savior., Life, of course, divine life, they had through faith, else they would not have been saints. But there was no such thing as union with a glorified Head in heaven. Nay, it did not exist even when our Lord was upon earth. The disciples had faith and life, but they were forbidden to go to the Gentiles, instead of being united to them, till Christ rose from the dead. But the moment the Spirit came down, consequent on Christ's exaltation above, the various tongues proclaimed God's grace to the Gentiles as well as Jews; and for the first time we read of "the Church," in the full and proper sense, as now subsisting on earth (see Acts 2) Christ had now begun to fulfill His promise, " Upon this rock I will build my Church." How could this mean the old assembly which fell in the wilderness? It was a new and future building. No point is evaded, as indeed there was no temptation; for the truth on this subject is clear and certain, though I do not expect to convince every one. What I have remarked in this paper spares me the need of replying to what is urged now, which is altogether beside the mark. The only thing of the least shadow of weight is Acts 7:38, which has been fully explained (1 Cor. 10), and proves that Israel was typical of us. How does that show that they and we form "one body"? Christ was the Lamb foreordained before the foundation of the world (not slain from it). How does this prove that believing Jew and Gentile formed one body of old, as unquestionably they do now?
P.S.-The author of a paper (on Col. 1:18) admits much, too much I think, to allow of a long or successful resistance to the rest. He allows that the "scriptural proofs of the peculiar blessings belonging to the Church, since" what he terms " its Pentecostal formation," are convincing; but he seems to conceive that the Old Testament saints may have had those privileges extended to them also, though in the separate state and removed from earth to heaven. He does not pretend to cite Scripture for this very imaginative mode of embodying the Old Testament saints in the Church, which I apprehend will satisfy those who oppose my views as little as myself. He tries to make it out by the illustration of the French empire, established after some distant colony was formed, and then granting its imperial advantages to the colonists. But the answer is plain. Scripture, in presenting to our faith the groups of glory, distinguishes the spirits of just men made perfect (i.e. in resurrection) from the Church of the first-born. There is no such thought there as merging all in one; whereas a positive decree of the emperor would be needful to make good the claims of the colonists. Psa. 68:18 does not refer to departed saints, but to Christ's triumph over the evil spirits who had previously led His people captive.
Another writer has referred to Rom. 11. and Gal. 3 in proof that the Church actually existed as such in Old Testament times. But this is evidently to confound things that differ, because the inheritance of the Abrahamic promises, of which their chapters treat, is not identical with the enjoyment of the Church's privileges; whereas their identity is assumed in the argument. It is allowed that the New Testament saints do inherit those promises, but that is an essentially different thing from the blessings revealed, e.g., in the Ephesians. The olive is not the heavenly church but the earthly tree of promise and testimony, of which the Jews were the natural branches. Instead of the broken-off unfaithful branches, Gentiles are now grafted in; but, on their unfaithfulness, excision is the sure threat of God, and the Jews will again be brought into their own olive tree; i.e. for the millennial inheritance. This is the plain teaching of Rom. 11. and though as Gentiles we may be grafted in, and as individuals we may be Abraham's seed, the special position of Christ's body, as made known in 1 Corinthians, Ephesians, Colossians, etc., is too distinct to require argumentation. When " the body" is spoken of there is no cutting off nor grafting in. There is in it neither Jew nor Gentile. All is above nature there.

Who Shall Confirm Covenant?

Dan. 9:27.-I believe that it is impossible legitimately to connect the death of the Messiah with the covenant confirmed with the mass, or many, for one week (i.e: 7 years) in this passage, and that for several reasons:-
First, The Messiah was already regarded as " cut off" at the close of a previous division of the weeks, viz. after the first 7 + 62 = 69 weeks, or 483 years.
Secondly, The disastrous end of the city and the sanctuary is supposed to have come before the seventieth week begins. (Compare the conclusion of verse 26.) After the Messiah was cut off and before the last week, it will be noticed by the careful reader that there is an interval of indefinite length, filled up by the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple, and a course of war and desolation which is not yet terminated.
Thirdly, After all this comes the last, or seventieth week, which has to do with "the beast" as clearly as the first 69 weeks bring us down to Christ's death, the interruption of the chain being left room for, and supplied, in the latter part of verse 26.
Fourthly, It is clear that when the Messiah has been cut off, another personage is spoken of " as the prince that shall come," whom it is absurd to confound with the Messiah, because it is his people who ravage the Jewish city and sanctuary; that is, it is a Roman prince, and not the promised Head of Israel.
Fifthly, As this future prince of the Romans is the last person spoken of, it is most natural, unless adequate reasons appear to the contrary, to consider that verse 27 refers to him, and not to the slain Messiah: " and he shall confirm covenant" (not "the" covenant, as the margin shows).
Sixthly, This is remarkably strengthened by the time for which the covenant is made, namely, for seven years, which has, in my opinion, no sense if applied to anything founded on the Lord's death, but exactly coincides with the two periods of the earlier, and the later half-weeks, during which the Roman beast acts variously in the Apocalypse.
Seventhly, It is yet more fortified by the additional fact, that when half the time of this covenant expires, " He shall cause the sacrifice and oblation to cease," just as might be gathered from Rev. 11 and other Scriptures.

The Seven Parables

Matt. 13-The connection between these several parables is asked. It will be observed that they are in all seven, the number of spiritual completeness in good or evil. (See Leviticus and the Revelation passim.) Next, it is manifest that the first differs from the rest, inasmuch as it is not a likeness of the kingdom of heaven, which the following six are. Further, of these six, three were said (beside the " sower") to the multitude outside, as well as the disciples; the last three to the disciples alone, within the house. All this bears upon the true interpretation, not as deciding but confirming it. For the first parable is evidently general, if it do not particularly refer to our Lord's personal ministry on earth, before the kingdom of heaven was introduced by His ascension. It is not here the heir sent to receive the fruit of the vineyard; Jesus is " a sower;" and His sowing is hindered and opposed by the world, the flesh, and the devil, as we find in the explanation (verses 19-22), though a portion of the seed takes root in good ground.
The three public comparisons of the kingdom of heaven follow,-the wheat and tare field, the mustard seed, and the leaven. The sower here is, still the Son of man; but it is His work from heaven (just as in Mark 16:20; Eph. 2:17). It is the kingdom of Christ when rejected by the Jews; of Christ absent, not present in visible power and glory. It is the kingdom of heaven on earth, entrusted to servants, who, alas! are soon asleep, and the devil sows his wicked children in the midst of the true children of the kingdom. The general teaching then is, that the new dispensation, as far as man's responsibility was concerned, would see ruin introduced by the enemy, which nothing could remedy but the judgment executed at the end of the age. But this is not all. Christendom would grow from a diminutive beginning into a "tree," emblematic of a towering earthly power, which would even shelter the instruments of Satan (compare verses 4 and 19 with 32). Nor this only: for a system of doctrine, nominally at least Christian, should spread over a certain defined mass, till the whole was leavened. Whether this mixture, this worldly aggrandizement, this propagation of (not life or truth, but) profession, such as it was, were of the Lord or His enemy, must be gathered not merely from hints here, but from Scripture generally.
Then; upon the dismission of the multitude, the Lord explains the chief of the first three similitudes of the kingdom, and adds three more, which develope not its external appearances, but its internal aspects to the spiritual man. Treasure hid in the field, the pearl, and the drag-net, comprehend these further instructions. Christ buys the field for the sake of the treasure, His own that He loved in the world. This, nevertheless, did not fully tell out either His love or their beauty in His eyes. Therefore, as it seems to me, the parable of the pearl follows," one pearl of great price," the unity and the peerless charms of that object in the Lord's eyes, for which He gave up " all that He had," as Messiah, here below; yea, life itself. The net evidently presents the closing circumstances of the kingdom, as to which I would briefly call attention to two facts often confounded, that the fishermen gather the good into vessels, casting the bad away, while the angels at the consummation sever the wicked from among the just. Our part is to take forth the precious from the vile; theirs will be to separate the vile from the precious. Grace in man occupies itself_ with "‘the good." It will be the judicial task of the angels to deal with the wicked, and to leave " the just" as the nucleus for the Lord's glory in the millennial earth.

The Heavenly Calling

Heb. 3-It is of no small moment to bear in mind that, while the "heavenly calling," as a developed system, depends on the ascension of the Lord Jesus Christ into heaven, the faith of Old Testament believers was far in advance of their calling and circumstances. Thus, the Lord called Abram from his country and kindred and father's house to a land that He would show him; and it was certainly by faith that he obeyed and went out, not knowing whither he went. But Heb. 11:9 shows us the further action of faith; for when he got to the land he sojourned in it as in a strange country, because a ray of the distant heavenly glory had dawned on his soul. " He looked for a city which hath foundations," etc. Thus he and the other patriarchs died, as they lived, in faith, not in actual possession. Nevertheless, such strangership as this neither amounts to nor implies the "heavenly calling." Doubtless, the " heavenly calling" now produces and enjoins strangership also; but this in no way proves that itself was published and enjoyed of old.
For the " heavenly calling," brought before us in Hebrews, grew out of the position of the Lord as having appeared, and when He had by Himself purged our sins, as having sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high. Hence the earthly tabernacle and the rest in the land, and the Levitical priesthood and sacrifices entirely disappear, for the partakers of the heavenly calling who are addressed in the epistle. This state of things was not true either of the fathers or the children of Israel. Their hope was intimately bound up with the land (no doubt, under the Messiah and a glorified condition, but still their land and people as the medium of blessing for all others); but the " heavenly calling" was not revealed, nor could be till He came whose rejection led to it, and whose redemption and consequent glorification in heaven became its basis. Hence Abram had his earthly altar. Hence he sacrificed, as did his descendants, in due season, of the flock, or the herd, or the appointed clean birds. Then comes the worldly sanctuary and its most instructive furniture and rites, that spoke of better things looming in the future. Nobody that I know disputes that individual saints saw beyond these shadows, dimly perhaps but really, to a coming Savior and a heavenly country. Still the land to which the patriarchs were called was an earthly land, and the entire polity of Israel was that of a nation governed under the eye of a God who displayed Himself on earth in their midst-in contrast with "the heavenly calling," of which not the less it furnished striking types, mutatis mutandis. Accordingly, in Heb. 11, after having traced the precious individual traits of the Spirit in the Old Testament saints, not only from Abraham but from Abel downwards, we are guarded against the error that would merge all in one lump, by the incidental statement of the last verse. (See also chap. 12: 23.) The elders have not received the promise; they are waiting till the resurrection for that. Meanwhile God has provided unforeseen some better thing for us. He has given us not promise only but accomplishment in Christ. He has made us worshippers once purged, having no more conscience of sins. He calls us boldly to enter into the holiest by a new and living way consecrated for us. None of these things could be so predicated of them, and yet these things are but a part of the heavenly calling. Truly, then, has God provided some better thing for us, even if we only look at what is now made known through the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven. It is also true that they without us shall not be made perfect. They and we shall enter on our respective portion in resurrection glory at the coming of Christ. Meanwhile we have no earthly calling, nothing but an heavenly one.
So far is it from being true that the early ecclesiastical writers erred by distinguishing too sharply between the dispensations, that their main characteristic is Judaizing the church by denying the real differences. Jerome did this no less than others, even to the confounding of Christ's ministry with Jewish priesthood.

What the Church Consists Of

If certain views as to what " the church'.' consists of are asked to be clearly stated, I cannot better fulfill this request than by giving the following extracts from a writer deeply versed in
these subjects:-
The Word of God presents to us a church formed on earth by the power of the Holy Ghost come down from heaven when the Son of God sat down there in glory, having accomplished the work of redemption. This church is one With its Head; it is the body whereof Christ, ascended on high and seated on the right hand of God, is the Head. (Eph. 1:20-23; 2: 14-22; 3: 5-6; 4: 4-16; 1 Cor. 12:12,13; John 12:32; 11: 52.) The same Spirit, who, by the means of those whom God chose, had called sinners and communicated life to them, has also united them in one body, whose Head is the glorified Christ, and of which the Spirit Himself is the bond with Christ, and in which He serves as the bond between the members one with another The church, then, is a body subsisting in unity here below, formed by the power of God, who gathers His children in union with Christ its Head; a body which derives its existence and unity from the work and presence of the Holy Ghost come down from heaven as the consequence of the ascension of Jesus. What is described in Ephesian, and defined as the church, is a state of things impossible to exist before the death and resurrection of Christ as its basis, and the presence of the Holy Ghost as its formative and maintaining power. Any definition we could give of it, according to Ephesians, supposes these two things. The Spirit of God, there, treats Jews and Gentiles as alike children of wrath, speaks of the middle wall of partition broken down by the cross of Jesus, the actual exaltation of Jesus above all principality and power, and us raised and exalted with Him; and both Jew and Gentile reconciled in' one new man, in one body by the cross, and builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit; so that there is one body and one. Spirit. It is declared, consequently, that " now unto principalities and powers in heavenly places is made known by the Church the manifold wisdom of God." There are two great truths dependent on this doctrine: the church united to Christ in glory accomplished hereafter; and meanwhile, as far as existing or developed on earth, the habitation of God through the Spirit. This is its calling, of which it is to walk worthy; a calling clearly impossible from its very nature, till the descent of the Holy Ghost made it such an habitation.
That the saints will all be gathered into everlasting blessedness as partaking of Christ as their life, and redeemed by His blood, according to the counsels of God, and conformed to the image of His Son, is owned. They are all redeemed by blood, and all quickened by divine life. But the doctrine insisted on is this: that, Christ having broken down the middle wall of partition by His death, and ascended up on high, and sat clown on the right hand of God, and thus presented the full efficacy of His work in the presence of God, the Holy Ghost has come down and united believers in one body, thus united to Christ as one body; which body is in Scripture designated the Church, or assembly of God, and is His habitation through the Spirit. In this, as founded on the risen and exalted Savior, and united to Him, as seen on high, by the Holy Ghost, there is neither, Jew nor Greek. Christ, as exalted, is entirely above these distinctions; Jew or Greek are alike brought nigh, as having been children of wrath, by the blood of that cross by which the middle wall of partition has been broken down. Hitherto God had saved souls. At Pentecost He gathered His children into the assembly on earth; He added daily to the Church such as should be saved. It is no longer salvation merely, nor even the kingdom. God begins to form His Church here below (Acts 2).
To make the Church a company of believing Jews, with Gentiles added to them, and Abraham's seed their proper definition, entirely shuts out this divine teaching, because the position given to the Church in Ephesians entirely precludes their being, looked at as Jews; and the character of "Abraham's seed" comes in merely to show they are true heirs of promise, because they are Christ's, who is the seed of Abraham and Heir of the promises. But, most clearly, this is altogether the lower ground on which to speak of Christ, in comparison with His glorious exaltation at the right hand of, God, on which the Church as such is founded..... No one can read the Ephesians attentively without seeing that the Church, as one body existing on earth, though heavenly in privilege and character, takes its place consequent on the work of the cross, the exaltation of Jesus to the right hand of God, and the coming down of the Holy Ghost. Hence to give any definition of the Church which implies its existence (other than in the counsels of God), which speaks of its existence on earth (e.g. during the life of. Christ on earth, or previous to His exaltation and the descent of the Holy Ghost), denies its nature, and sets aside its character Those who compose the Church have other relationships besides. They are children of Abraham. But these latter characters do not weaken what has been stated, much less do they annul it..... 1 Cor. 12 describes the Church.... as one body on earth. So Eph. 1: 4.; Col. 1.... While then one would sympathize with the godly dread some may feel at anything which seems to affect the salvation of a11 saints from the beginning, and the electing love of God in respect of them, it is well, on the other hand, to call things by their right, i.e. scriptural, names. The Spirit of God is infinitely wiser than man, and our business is to see, follow, and admire His wisdom, as in other matters, so here. He has restricted the title "Church of God," in a New Testament sense, to those who are baptized with the Holy Ghost.
Such is a brief exposition of the views in question, which, to my mind, carry scriptural proof along with them. But what I contend is, that the view which makes the church of God embrace believers in all dispensations is wholly devoid of such proof. It is in vain to reason, against the plainest and fullest testimony of God's word, that "all saints are equally and similarly justified by faith.... alike called saints.... the names of all written in one book, the Book of Life." These similarities, which are not denied, are by no means inconsistent with the place of the church as the body and bride of Christ. But when it is pronounced that " the new Covenant Church " (a term not found in Scripture) "has no higher place assigned it than participating in the blessings of faithful Abraham," the entire teaching of Scripture, above referred to (in Eph., Col., etc.) is set aside. It really then becomes a question of spiritual intelligence, if not worse. This objection is ignorance of or opposition to Scripture.
As to Heb. 12:22,23, we must adopt not only with some of the best critics, but with the most ancient versions, as the Syriac, Vulgate, etc., the punctuation χαὶ μυρίασιν, ἀγγέλων πανμγρει, χαὶ ἐχχλησίᾳ, πρ. χ. τ. λ. It is confessedly required by the structure of the whole portion of which every paragraph is commenced by χαί. So that the attempt to make this passage show "the general assembly " and " the church " as identical is a failure.
No doubt we read of " the church in the wilderness." But ἐχχλησία simply means an " assembly" or " congregation.", In Acts 19:32,39,41, the confused meeting of the Ephesians cannot mean the church of God, yet it is called ἡ ἐχχληςἰα. So "the church in the wilderness" ought rather to have been " the assembly" there. It means, unquestionably, not the church of God, but the congregation of Israel, almost all of whose carcases fell in the wilderness, and to whom God sware that they should not enter into
. His rest. It is said again: " Besides, He was slain from the foundation of the world." A comparison of this passage (Rev. 13:8) with Rev. 17:8, where the same persons and circumstances are referred to, makes it evident that " from the foundation of the world" should be connected, not with " the Lamb slain," but with " the names written in the book of life." It is thus plain that the arguments, whether of one adversary or of another, have no weight when examined. And yet they are among the principal ones against the view which, in my opinion, Scripture so plainly sets forth, viz. that the body of believers, gathered from the day of Pentecost until the time when Christ shall come to take. His heavenly people to Himself, has, while sharing many fundamental blessings with all the redeemed, a distinct calling and privileges of its own, and alone has the title assigned to it of." the church of God" or Christ's body.

All They That Be in Asia

2 Tim. 1:15.-Are these all the Asian saints absolutely, or are they only the few that had been at Rome, and had shown this cowardice towards St. Paul,-that they had failed to identify themselves with him, and his testimony and circumstances? Clearly the latter: and the way of speaking of them used by the apostle (οἱ ὲν τῇἈσίᾳ) is likely due to the fact that these Asian Christians were home again in Asia when Paul wrote to Timothy about their neglect of him when they were in Rome; and that Timothy, to whom he wrote, was then in Asia also.
It is rather too wide a conclusion to come to, that all the Christians in Asia had turned away from Paul. The fickleness of the Galatians would warrant us in looking for a good deal of turning away from Paul in Asia;- but this passage gives no countenance to the incredible notion that the whole of the Asian saints had given up Paul. The fact of Phygellus and Hermogenes being mentioned as two of them, shows that they were only a few. And again, the praise of Onesiphorus (an Asian), in the same connection, for seeking him out very diligently and finding him, and not being ashamed of his chain, points pretty plainly to the circumstances of the apostle as the cause of their repudiation of him, and that the scene of their so doing had been Rome. He says in effect: The Asians all shunned me when here; but instead of being ashamed of me, or repudiating me, Onesiphorus sought me out with more than ordinary diligence, and found me. 2 Tim. 1:8 shows that this was the purport of the apostle's meaning. "Be not thou there-, fore ashamed of the testimony of our. Lord, nor of me His prisoner; but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God."

They Did Eat and Drink

Ex. 24:11.-Does this mean, as some make it, that they enjoyed a feast with Jehovah? " Also they saw God, and did eat and drink," means nothing more than this,-they lived; they were not struck down dead, It was expected that no one could see God and not die. " Manoah said unto his wife, We shall surely die, because we have seen God" (Judg. 13:22). What was the origin of this thought? The conviction that Man, as he is, is so unfit for God's presence, that to see God must be death to man. The death and resurrection. of Him who became man and died for us is meant to deliver the believer from such a feeling. He is indeed dead and risen with Him.

Epistolary Communications: Tabernacle, Covenant, and Putting Away

Ottawa, America, Oct. 27th, 1876. MY DEAR BROTHER.... I write at once as to Heb. 9 Διά is used for a state or condition, which affects the principle on which we act or receive anything, on which anything takes place. Thus, Rom. 4:11, δἰ ἀχροβυστίας; Rom. 2:27, διὰ γράμματορ χαὶ περιτομῆς.
So it is in Heb. 9:11. As to παραγένομενος, though it be having come, it is not the act of coming ἔρχομαι, but being present in or for something by coming; coming into a certain condition, so that He is there, or come in view of what is to be done when arrived. The verb in the sentence is εἰσῆλθεν ἐφάπαξ verse 12. He had taken the position of High Priest of coming good things; and this office was to be fulfilled, not in the present earthly tabernacle, but in a greater and more perfect one. The tabernacle is not, therefore, I think, the incarnation, for His priesthood (save the fact of atonement) was not on earth; it is exercised in connection with heavenly things, though there securing earthly ones for Israel. παραγένομενος is entering into the condition of priesthood, not incarnation or glory, and that is connected with the heavenly tabernacle. The fact of His going in is in 24 as in 12; this referring to eternal redemption, which He had found; that, to the fact of His abiding presence before God there for us; but in both εἰσέεχομαι, the act of going in, not παραγίνομαι, what He had come to be or do, the condition entered into or in view. I do not consider διὰ αἴματος, or τοῦ ἰδίου αἵματοσς as instrumental, but to be used in the sense already referred to. The end of the ages, or consummation of the ages, are all the dealings of God with man to test his general condition. In this general sense the state of innocence comes in; but the proper connection is what is after the fall, yet not looking at man as lost, but testing his state and whether he was recoverable, or was lost and had to be saved. Without law; under law; God manifested in the flesh, were the great features of this. Hence in John 12 the Lord says, "Now is the judgment of this world." Though there was testimony, there were no religious institutions before the flood, unless the fact of sacrifices. There were after: government, promises to Abraham, showing it was grace to one separated from an idolatrous world and head of a new race, the law, the prophets, and at last the Son as come, not as offered. Then God laid the foundation of His own purposes in righteousness.
The difference is that in John 1:29 it is the sin of the world, in Heb. 9 it is to put away sin more generally. Neither will have full accomplishment till the new heavens and the new earth. In this last passage we have to distinguish between it and bearing the sins of many. The last concerns us, and purging our conscience. I do not think it has been adequately seen how all good and evil has been brought to an issue in the cross-in that place of sin before God, that is, in Christ made sin (though in the last words it is for us, 2 Cor. 5:21). We have the absolute wickedness of man and enmity against God in goodness; the complete power of Satan, "your hour and the power of darkness; " the prince of this world leading all men, the disciples having fled; man in his absolute perfection, in whom that prince had nothing, but there was perfect love to the Father and perfect obedience, man in absolute perfection, and that as made sin before God, where it was needed for God's glory. For it was where He was made sin that the obedience was made perfect, obedient unto death; God absolute in righteousness against sin, and perfect in love to the sinner. This, therefore, is the finished and so immutable ground of eternal perfectness. We cannot say as to the result sin is actually put away, save for us (2 Cor. 5) who by the Holy Ghost know it; but the work is perfectly done on the ground of which there will be a new heavens and a new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness. We must not confound " sin" and "sins." He has borne the sins of many (they never can be remembered against us); loved and washed from them in His own blood: our conscience, once purged, is made clean forever. But sin is that alienation of all things, and first of all of our hearts, from God, which requires reconciliation of things in heaven and earth, which is not yet, and of ourselves which is; see Col. 1:20,21, and many confirmatory passages. Christ then has been manifested for the total abolition of sin out of heaven and earth, defilement and alienation gone, besides our guilt being atoned for and our sins remitted; but both are by His sacrifice, in which God withal has been perfectly glorified in all that He is. The result is not yet wholly accomplished, nor will be fully till the new heavens and the new earth. The χαταχθόνια of Phil. are another thing; they bow but are not reconciled. I say this to avoid mistakes. The burnt-offering alone took the ground of sin, the sin-offering of sins. Romans also, 1: 17-v. 11, treats of sins; 5: 12-end of 8. of sin only, here only as to man on the earth. φέρειν is as to sins, ὁ αἴρων goes on to sin. Sins are borne, sin put away. Of course our sins are wholly taken away, but that is " our." He is never said to have borne the sins of all or of the world, or taken them away, but our sins, or those of many; but He is the ὁ αἴρων of sin out of the universe, the taker-away of it, the result being not yet accomplished. Εἰς ἀθέτησιν is the result proposed, ἠθἑτησε is not said. The work is done, the full result not yet brought about; but it is all in virtue of that, though power comes in to make it good, just as it does in the microcosm of ourselves, even as to the body in due time.
As to the question of " covenant" or " testament": " covenant" is always right, save in Heb. 9:16,17. Even here it has been contested; but it seems more simple to take it as "testament," an observation or allusion by the by, διαθήχη being in Greek covenant or testament or disposition. The voice of τοῦ διαθεμένου has been the great bone of contention where it has been discussed; translated, if covenant, " the appointed " [sacrifice]. But this has seemed to me forced. Some have even made Gal. 3:15,16 "testament," but this, I judge, is entirely wrong.

The Ransom Money

Boston, U.S., January 1877.
My DEAR BROTHER-I have read the Lösepenningen of Dr. Waldenström. I had previously read his Latin thesis on the Lutheran symbolical books. There he was all right in combating the common error that Christ's work changed God's mind, and that God was then but a Judge, and practically that love was in Christ, and only judgment in God, as if the work of Christ procured His love. I have very often insisted on the truth as to this. You have both sides in John 3:14,15. But he drops out " the Son of MAN must," and holds only that " God gave His Son." And thus it is a very wrong production. Still the error that is in it arises from having got hold of the love, and so getting onesided. The interpretation of the passage is all wrong, but that is not so material; but he confounds purchasing and redemption. If what he says means anything, all sins of all men are put away.
Dr. W. is also careless in his use of Scripture. He contradicts himself; for though sins are blotted out the curse abides on sinners continually. Wrath and the curse remain for those who are sinners, yet there was no wrath in God! The justified are taken from under the curse; but they had been under it then it appears, and, in their sins, were under the wrath of God and condemnation. He mixes up all this confusion and contradiction with just refutation of errors. And note, What did Christ suffer and be forsaken of God for? It is all well to say God's love gave Him, and that was the source of all. No doubt. But why did Christ suffer as He did? why had He the stripes? He is a propitiation, an ἱλασμός, He suffered ἱλάσχεσθαι. God had not to be reconciled, but His righteous holy nature required the sin to be put away. Then he uses "we" and "us" in the mouth of believers, as if it was all the world. His doctrine as to not living under law and experience is dangerous. I resist looking to experience as much as he does; but, in citing the lost sheep and the father of the prodigal, he has dropped the return of the prodigal, so carefully brought out in detail by the Lord to make the difference between conversion and salvation clear. I reject utterly self-examination for peace; but a soul will have to know itself-not merely its sins forgiven, but that "in me, that is in my flesh, dwelleth no good thing." He resists reconciling God, in which he is right. But he has neglected one side of Scripture truth; has quoted Scripture without heed; and contradicts himself. It is confusion of redemption and purchase that has made all his doctrine wrong. Christ is an ἀντίλυτρον ὺπὲρ πάντων: but that which is the strongest statement is very different from ἀπολύτρωσις. It is a pity he could not be set straight, for the point of departure of his mind is just: but he has followed it out hastily, not weighing Scripture. He has lost the ἱλασμός side of the work, and this is dangerous. It has not gone to denying that the sins had to be put away, and therefore has thrown all his teaching into confusion. The blood of the goat was presented to God on the mercy-seat, and Christ is entered in not without blood; why if it were not needed to ἱλάσχεσθαι τὰς ἁμαρτἱας τοῦ λαοῦ? Why was it presented to God? Not surely to change His mind or make Him love (a horrid thought), but needed for His righteousness and holy nature. It became Him in bringing many sons to glory. So He says to Israel, When I see the blood, I will pass over. There is wrath and the curse he admits-why? and what met it so that it should not be executed on us? Hence He always confounds God and the Father, making us all His children. "God so loved the world." It is never said " the Father " loved the world. The Father is a name of relationship with His children, not with the world. Dr. W. admits they are not all saved. The question is not, Did Christ undertake a partial restoration? but, Did He undertake the restoration, of all? He died for all, I believe, but that is a very different thing. Here you have purchase and redemption as the same, and their perfect restoration the same as He undertook. All this is confusion and mist. He is wrong even in saying purchase is always spoken of all. In 1 Cor. 6:20 and 7: 23 it is not so; and 2 Peter 2:1 is quite another thought, and so is Matt. 13:44, where the field is clearly bought to have the treasure. There are two other cases in Rev. where it is distinctly not all, and περιποιοῦμαι, where the same is true. I cannot find one passage where it is all. To state that it is so always is not careful.

Four Characteristic Features of a Christian

DEAR BROTHER-I have been interested just lately by what is written in Eph. 4:30;5. 1-3, and send you a few thoughts on it. A Christian in apostolic days was sealed by the Holy Spirit of God, and he knew it. He was forgiven of God, and he was conscious of it. He shared in the love of Christ, and was sensible of it. He was a saint of God, and was reminded of it. Very great were these favors, and for the most part very wonderful; yet each of them could furnish ground on which to base most practical exhortations for every-day life. Sealed by the Holy Spirit of God, the Christian was not to grieve Him. Forgiven of God in. Christ, they were to forgive one another. Loved by Christ, they were to walk in love. As saints, they were to refrain even from the naming among themselves of those unclean ways by which men are so often defiled. Their being thus exhorted showed into what, unless watchful, they might fall. The terms, however, in which they were addressed, proved that they never could be lost. For God had forgiven them, and they were sealed by the Spirit unto the day of redemption.

The First-Born of Every Creature

WHAT is the exact meaning of " first-born of every creature,"πρωτὀτχος πάσης χτίσεως, Col. 1:15?
In a new translation it is said, "it is not each individual as such, but of everything called χτίσις in its nature (compare Heb. 9:11). Creature' individually is χτίσμα." This settles it as against the querist if that passage had been in his mind.
But Meyer says [on πρωτότοχος πάσης χτίσεως] after the relation of Christ to God, now follows His relation to what is created, in an apologetic interest of opposition to the Gnostic false teachers.. The false teachers denied to Christ the supreme unique rank in the order of spirits. But He is first-born of every creature, that is, born before every creature-having come to personal existence, entered upon subsistent being, ere yet anything created was extant (Rom. 1:25;8. 39; Heb. 4:13). Analogous, but not equivalent, is Prov. 8:22, f.
In a note as against Hoffmann he says that this expression "posits the origin of Christ (as λόγος προφοριχός) in His temporal relation to the creature; and this point is the more purely to be adhered to, seeing that Christ Himself does not belong to the category of the χτίσις.”
Then, in the text, he proceeds-" It is to be observed that this predicate [first-born] also belongs to the entire Christ, inasmuch as by. His exaltation His entire person is raised to that state in which He, as to His divine nature, had already existed before the creation of the world," etc. "The mode in which he (Paul) conceived of the personal pre-existence of Christ before the world, as regards (timeless) origin, is not defined by the figurative προτότοχος more precisely than as procession from the Divine nature, whereby the pre-mundane Christ became subsistent, ἐν μορφῆ Θεῷ (Phil. 2:6).
The genitive πάσης χτισεώς, moreover, is not the partitive genitive (although De Wette still, with Usteri, Reuss, and Baur, holds this to be indubitable), because the anarthrous πᾶσα χτίσις does not mean the whole creation, or everything which is created (Hoffmann), and consequently cannot affirm the category or collective whole to which Christ belongs as its first-born individual (it means every creature: compare on, πᾶσα οὶχοδομή, Eph. 2:21); but it is the genitive of comparison, corresponding to the superlative expression, "the first-born in comparison with every creature," that is, born earlier than every creature.
In a note he says against Hoffmann-" The interpretation of H. is incorrect, because there would thereby be necessarily affirmed a homogeneous relation of origin for Christ and all the χτἱσις."H. opines that πάσης χτίσεως is simply genitive of, of the definition of relation ' (e.g.,' in relation to all that is created, Christ occupies the position which a first-born has towards the household of his father ')." " But this" (continues Meyer) " explains nothing, because the question remains, What relation is meant to be defined by the genitive? The προτότοχος is not at all to be got over so easily as it is by Hoffmann, namely, with a grammatically erroneous explanation of the anarthrous πᾶσα χτίσις, and with appeal to Psa. 89:27 (where in fact, προτότοχος stands without genitive, and בְּבו֗ר in the sense of the first rank."
" The genitive here is to be taken quite as the comparative genitive with πρῶτος (see on John 1:15, etc.) The element of comparison is the relation of time (πρὸ τοῦ χόσμον, John 17: 5), and that in respect of origin. But because the latter in the case of every χτίσις is different from what it is in the case of Christ.... the term πρωτότοχος is chosen, which, in comparison as to the time of origin, points to the peculiar nature of the origination in the case of Christ, namely, that He was not created by God like the other beings in whom this is implied in the designation χτἰσις, but born, having come forth homogeneous from the nature of God.
" And by this is expressed, not a relation homogeneous with the χτίσις (Holtzmann), a relation kindred to the world, but that which is absolutely exalted above the world, and unique....
"At variance, therefore, with the words is the Arian interpretation that Christ is designated as the first creature. With this view the sequel also conflicts, which describes Christ as the accomplisher and aim of creation; hence in His case a mode of origin higher and different from the being created must be pre-supposed, which is, in fact, characteristically indicated in the purposely-chosen word πρωτοτοχος.... If the creation of all things took place in Christ, it is evident that He must stand before the series of created things, and be πρωτότοχος πάσης χτίσεως."
So far Meyer, the best of all the German critics of the Greek text. What say you to it?
Do you think εἴχων and πρωτότοχος refer to Christ in His divine nature, or in incarnation?
See also Dr. J. B. LIGIFITOOT'S " Colossians," pp. 210-216, for an historical sketch of the interpretation. Augustine and Pelagius, he says, held both to be expressions of the Incarnate Christ. The " Fathers " did so generally to meet the Arians. And Marcellus went into error, making it all the moral creation, and applying the term to the whole context.
Dr. LIGHTFOOT'S notes are copious, and his discussion contains much valuable information; but he does not very distinctly tell us what he thinks, though I gather that he regards both expressions of Christ's divine nature.
OLSHAUSEN says: " In verses 15-17 Christ is delineated without reference to His incarnation." Again: " He (the Son of God) must have been born of the substance of the Father before all the creation, for all things are created in Him."
Be. ELLICOTT will have it everything that is created, not the whole creation, " begotten, and that antecedently to everything that was created." " He disdains not to institute a temporal comparison between His own generation from eternity and their creation in time." He admits in a very secondary and inferential sense priority in dignity, "the genitive of the point of view."
ALFORD suggests that the safe method is to combine the two ideas of priority and dignity-" that Christ was not only firstborn of His mother in the world, but first-begotten of His Father before the worlds, and that He holds the rank, as compared with every created thing, of first-born in dignity. FOR, etc., 5: 16, where this assertion is justified."
THEODORET: " Not as having creation for a sister, but as begotten before all creation."
CHRYSOSTOM: " Not significant of glory and honor, but only of time."
BRAUNE: "Since πάσης denotes every kind of creature, angels and men, Christ existed before all. He does not begin the series of a category as first-begotten of the dead' (Rev. 1:5) among many brethren' (Rom. 8:29), but He is antecedent, conditioning the creation."
This is the reply which the sending of the foregoing has elicited from a friend:-
"I believe that Meyer errs in making πρωτότοχος expressive of priority in time, and is inconsistent in applying it to the Lord before He became a man. His language that He came to personal existence before creation, what does it mean? Put it back as far as you like, His becoming a person is to me a strange proof of Meyer's own soundness in the faith; but it proves the false interpretation. The man he most opposes, Hoffmann, seems nearer the truth in this matter.
John 1 is perfectly clear that the Word was God, and had a personal existence as the. Word with God before time began, that is, from all eternity. In time He became man; in time He was to be (as I understand it) both first-born of all creation (i.e. of everything to be designated creature), and first-born from the dead, but the former as incarnate, and the latter as risen.
" Hoffmann is right in designating the genitive as expressive of relation or in an objective point of view. It is, indeed, still more common than either of its special applications to ablation or partition; so that no objection can be valid on that score. It is notoriously comprehensive, so as to take in that which expresses comparison, value, etc., and is the objective rather than the subjective genitive. The Lord then is shown to be, not only the image of the invisible God, but first-born of all creation, meaning not priority of time, which would then be contrary to fact, but pre-eminence of dignity, no matter when He was born in time; and this because He created all. I, too, do not deny that it is a genitive of comparison; only it is supremacy, and not merely earliest in time, which is not true, and, if applied to His divine existence, would simply deny and destroy its reality. Did He become a Divine person, no matter how early in time? It is a very narrow partition, if any, which divides this idea from Arianism. Psa. 89 explains very clearly the case. For Solomon, though in fact late as being David's tenth son, became by God's will and sovereign choice first-born, that is, chief; so with Christ as man, though on the infinitely deeper ground of His own divine glory and right as Creator of all.
" Hence, we must of course reject such forced efforts as that founded on the very different phrases in John 1:15 or inn John 17:5. Origin is not the point, but relation of comparison. Begotten ' or born,' in relation to the Son in the Godhead cannot be allowed to mean a point of time, or subsequence, as I understand Meyer to mean, but simply the nearest relationship, or community of nature, between the Son and the Father. Was He or was He not Son from all eternity, as the Father was Father from all eternity or are we to reason from manhood, and infer that, because a father precedes his son, so it is in the Godhead? This I believe to be Arianism, and as baseless in Scripture as in sound reasoning, if we reason from the revealed nature of Godhead.
" In words, no doubt, Meyer avoids bald Arianism; but what does he mean if not the same thing in substance? Applied to Christ as man and in time, all is plain and certainly true; and His divine glory is left untouched; whereas these speculations do sully and lower and deny it in effect. For, as I understand the opening paragraph, it is taught by Meyer that Christ is first-born of every creature, as born before all, as having come to personal existence, or entered on subsistent being before creation, citing Rom. 1:25;8. 39, and Heb. 4:13, not one of which touches the question, and saying that Prov. 8:22 is analogous, though not equivalent. Is it the old Alexandrian idea of the λόγος ἐνδιάθετος becoming, προφοριχός Is this sound doctrine? In Scripture I see the Word God, and with God eternally, not the Word coming to personal existence; I see the Son in the bosom of the Father, not entering on subsistent being, be the point ever so early so as to create all that is created.
" But, further, where is the consistency of teaching that, if τ.ρ. π. χτ. means such priority as this, Christ's temporal relation to the creature, it also belongs to the entire Christ. Certainly the entire Christ was late in the history of human kind. When the fullness of time was come, God sent forth His Son. Now, once in the end or consummation of the ages has He been manifested for putting away of sin by His sacrifice. Nay, stress is laid on the language of the apostle, that it is what Christ is, not what He was, that is on His exaltation as risen to heaven. How then, if it be so, are we to put this interpretation of πρ. π. χτ.into harmony with what we have already heard? How can this predicate, first-born of every creature, belong to the entire Christ, and Christ exalted after the assumption of humanity and His work on earth, in the sense of born ere yet anything created was extant? If I do not mistake, the idea is that He who became personally pre-existent before the world, became also man, and in due time risen from the dead and exalted in heaven; but that Christ is πρ. π. χτ. in both senses seems to be Meyer's notion. It appears to me that the Lord is πρ. π. χτ. in neither sense, and that it is as incarnate He is so designated. For in becoming man His glory might have been obscured and forgotten. Taking part in blood and flesh, as the apostle says elsewhere, He might have been viewed in a way derogatory to His person and His higher nature. Therefore, He is carefully shown to be first-born of all creation,' and this because in the power of His person all the universe was created, invisible no less than visible; and this in strong contradistinction from His being first-born from among the dead,' which He is as exalted to heaven and head of the church. Alone, and always, and perfectly representing the invisible God, as His image, He had the headship of all creation when incarnate, the headship of the church when risen from the dead.
"And how absurd the mysticism of the Germans, who limit iv to a local sphere, as I understand, and will have it to mean that the creation of all things took place in Christ' I What a dreamland is all this pretension to superior accuracy, which is really but the pseudo-literalism of a schoolboy tacked on to the balloon of some wild philosophy! Had it been πρῶτος or πρὸ π. χ., there might have been some grammatical reason, though poor and feeble doctrinally; whereas it is a great truth that, born when He might be, the Creator, if He deigned so to be, was necessarily, when He ἐγένετο σάρξ, πρωτότοχος πάσης χτίσεως. Of course ἐν here means 'in virtue' or 'in the power of,' as distinguished from διά,`through' or by means of,' as an instrument. For the universe to be created in Him seems to me sheer nonsense.
" In the others I see little or nothing but what is wrong. If saints are not often scholars, scholars prove themselves almost always poor saints. If they do not speak ill of Christ, they do not hold fast or confess aright His glory, through their desire to please men."

The Philanthropy of God

WE have received a letter from a friend on the Continent telling us of the intemperate denunciation of all ranks and classes in the country whence it comes by a temperance lecturer from another land, who had written to the newspapers in his own country that the laud " was a land of drunkards; our Bible a drunkard's Bible in order to serve the liquor traffic, our clergymen drunkards, and our archbishop a swearing drunkard." " This unhappy and bad letter has now been translated and republished in the most of our newspapers and periodicals, and the result is that very many people have become enemies to the temperance works and movements in our land."
Our correspondent then relates the special denunciation with which he had been favored by this man, though he is, as we know, the most prominent promoter of the cause of temperance in his native land, because he did not come up to the mark of the lecturer. He is an earnest and a reforming philanthropist, and also a Christian worker, who, while (as he thinks) promoting the best interests of his country in Parliament, is also giving temperance lectures and preaching the gospel in cathedrals, churches, and other places. In our reply to him we try to show that though the joining in philanthropic works may do good for this world and time, the right thing for Christians is to confine themselves to work for the Lord in making known the gospel, and seek thus to be in the mind and current of the Holy Ghost by urging God's philanthropy on sinners; not to join ourselves to them to be worked up into the philanthropic schemes of men for the mere improvement of man in this world. Believing that the principles it contains are divine,
scriptural, and of universal application, we now publish that portion of our letter which is of public interest to believers.
With better times and the increase of wages there has been much more drinking for some time amongst the working classes than in former years. The result of young people receiving wages that make them independent of their parents, for support; is that the family institution, the source of national strength, has become a wreck, and young men and women, in too many instances, have become lawless. Hence there are habits indulged in by them which strike us as in sad contrast with those of former years. The working men are seen crowding our public-houses after the hours of labor, and tens of thousands of young men and women are to be found promenading our streets on the evenings of the Lord's day. A few years ago this was not the practice in the city where we write. Along with this we might mention the building of three or four new theaters, at a cost of more than £100,000, as a proof that the people are becoming "lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God." All this too on the back of "an awakening"! It is no wonder that Christian men should feel intensely about these significant signs of social deterioration, and catch at any scheme likely to lessen or remove these clamant. and increasing evils.
There is a growing feeling at the present hour among social reformers and politicians that some repressive measure must be employed in order to keep down the rising tide of intemperance that is threatening the moral destruction of our people. Hence there is likely to be a great movement set on foot at once to carry out such installments of social reformation, in opposition to the drink traffic, as may be most easily obtained. Then there will be great pressure put on Christians everywhere to join in this great philanthropic movement for social amelioration, and it will be hard for them to keep out of it if they are not aware_ of their heavenly calling, the heavenly character of Christianity, the separateness of the Christian's path of life and service from that of the men of the world, and that as promoters of "the philanthropy of God" they cannot join themselves with the ungodly and become the promoters of the philanthropy of men. We hope that our letter may be of some use in helping brethren in Christ who may not have thought much on the subject, and give them scriptural reasons why they should keep themselves aloof from all human confederacies, and work from God's center alone, and with the gospel of God, as being the exclusive " philanthropy of God " for the blessing of men, and this has induced us to publish it. There are two kinds of Christians: the spiritual and the carnal, as 1 Cor. 2. indicate. The carnal will flout what we write as transcendental and chimerical; the spiritual will accept it as scriptural, and act upon it; but we will be happy to endure the contempt of the former if we ensure the profiting of the latter. "I speak as unto wise men; judge ye what I say."
But first let us read the only passage of Scripture where the Word PHILANTHROPY occurs in connection with God. " But after that the kindness and love of God our Savior toward man (PHILANTHROPY) appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; which He shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior; that being justified by His grace, we. should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men" (Titus 3:4-8).
"I see you have had a sad time from the visit of the foreign temperance lecturer you refer to. He was here the very day your letter came, and lectured in one of the churches the next day. I was not out of the house, and did not see him, for I was not well; but I did not see any report of his address in the newspapers.
"There is no doubt great need to try to repress drinking in your country as well as in ours, and Christians ought only to allow the Scriptural use of it (1 Tim. 5:23).
" I was once very fully in the advocacy of the abolition of the liquor traffic; but while I have the same opinion of its banefulness, I have been giving myself to the work of the gospel alone for the last seventeen years: for I now think it is properly and particularly a Christian's work. A man of property and position, or an extensive employer of labor, feels on being converted that he could, by means of the influence he possesses, secure for his less favored citizens many social benefits. He becomes a member of the local municipality; and he labors for the social and moral good of the community, while he may look beyond to a higher sphere of usefulness as a member of his country's Parliament. If Christianity were intended for the improvement of man in the flesh, instead of being the standing proof of his moral incorrigibleness and condemnation, then there would be sense enough in his pursuing such a course. He has a first-class education; his social position is superior; his influence is great; he has time, ability, and money; why not devote himself to the moral, social, and political amelioration of his less fortunate fellow-men? The soaking of society in drink he sees to be the bane of his country; why should he not give his help to the removing or restriction of this most baneful traffic? There seems to. be nothing more natural than for one who is uninstructed in the nature and objects of Christianity to reason thus and act accordingly. But when one knows Christianity, he sees that it points out a more excellent way.' I should like to call your special attention to this, if you would allow me.
" Meantime I will send you by post the only copy I have of a book of mine, called the ' Antichrist of England,' meaning by that the liquor traffic, that you may see how I used to labor in this cause twenty years ago. I have no doubt you will find in it congenial sentiments to your own; from page 66 to the end I depict the mischief done to the professing church by the liquor traffic. I was comparatively young then, and there are hot-headed expressions and opinions in it which I would now modify or omit-(in fact I would let it alone entirely); but I do not abandon my conviction that it is one of the greatest barriers to the success of the evangelization of the people; and even morality: only I would not now seek its subversion either by political or philanthropic means, but leave that to moral men, while I would give myself, to the Word of God and prayer, as said the apostles of our Lord (Acts 6) And I would advise you to do likewise.' I hear my Lord now saying to me-' Let the dead bury their dead' (it may be the most pious thing and right and natural to bury one's father), but 'go thou and preach the kingdom of God' (Luke 9:60).
" Besides, I could not any longer feel it right to be joined with all sorts of people in the total abstinence or temperance society, Infidels, Atheists, Deists, Jews, Mormons, and Mahomedans! for my Lord says- He that is not with me is against me:' also, ' Be not unequally yoked together with unbelievers' (see 2 Cor. 6:14-18). This is a most important portion of Scripture, and tells Christians that they are not to be ' diversely yoked with unbelievers,' because they are the temple of God,' and holy, dwelt in and walked among by God; and nothing but separation from unbelievers will ensure being acknowledged openly as sons and daughters by the Lord Almighty; ' Wherefore come out from the midst of them, and be separated, saith the Lord, and touch not what is unclean, and I will receive you; and I will be to you a Father, and ye shall be to me for sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.' This makes it plain that we cannot as Christians be joined with unbelievers in societies, whether philanthropic and social, or religious and political. Christianity allows us to do good to all men as we have opportunity in our individual capacity; but not to join others in it who are unbelievers, so as to compromise what we owe to Christ Himself. Christianity, practically, is the reproduction of Christ in His members; and, consequently, we dare do nothing on earth which our blessed Lord would not have done; and He worked all His works by the finger of God,' and not by philanthropic societies or political action, but by the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit; and thus only are His saints to serve God. ' I have strength for all things, through Him who giveth me power,' said St. Paul (Phil. 4:13). 'Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might' (Eph. 6)
" I have thought it right to give you this explanation while I send you a reading of my book, written at the level of the current Christianity of 1857, but below that of the spiritual Christianity of the New Testament, which actuated the holy apostles of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and has now been widely recovered. But I admit that it was written with a true-hearted desire to promote both the glory of God and the welfare of man. And though I would now seek to accomplish these ends with the same devout earnestness, I would not employ quite the same methods and means of reaching them. I frankly acknowledge your true-heartedness to Christ in your labors for the sobriety of your country, though I wish to show you that it is not the proper work for a Christian to occupy his mind and time with. I would like to keep the book as a milestone with 1857' on it marking progress, as I have not another copy; so please keep it for me till I see you again in Stockholm-if it please God that we should meet there.
" My object in forwarding the book is to let you see that I have once been as enthusiastic as yourself against the liquor traffic; but I am now convinced that the Lord Jesus Christ demands of me occupation with and for His name alone.
" As to the other book, I have a conviction that it might be blessed to your people, linking as it does the souls of believers with Christ in the heavens, through the Holy Ghost, and engaging the renewed affections with Himself. I have just received two letters from your country, speaking of much blessing received through the perusal of it.
"It is of all-importance that the heavenly character, as well as the church character, of the Christian calling should be known by believers, in order that they may be kept from wasting their precious time in working works for which they were not created in Christ Jesus, and which God had not before prepared that they should walk in them (Eph. 2:10). Christianity, as a divine system, is a living connection with a risen and glorified Christ in the heavens by the Holy Ghost come down; and practical and experimental Christianity is a realization of the blessedness of being justified from all things from which we could not be justified by the law of Moses, and the knowledge of Christ, and of our place in Christ before God the Father, and our place of witness for Christ before men in this world, the place of Christ's rejection. Those who have a knowledge of it are like St. Paul in Phil. 3; for Christianity is grateful love to Christ, and Supreme attachment to Him and constant occupation with Him, for His own excellency, for what He is Himself, and not only for what He has suffered for us and given us.
"It takes much divine forming to fit saints who are naturally benevolent and philanthropic for being true Christians, for Christianity is on its negative side the renunciation of all the principles which would naturally actuate us, were we only men, and expected to walk as men.' Men were made for this earth: our bodies were formed from it, and this earth was fitted up in its present cosmical condition for man; and there is nothing more natural than for Christians, after knowing the benefits of Christianity themselves, to feel for the miseries of their fellowmen and set to work to use Christianity for the improvement of the world. But this were an entire mistaking of the nature and aim of Christianity; for it would suppose our being in the millennium, when Christ shall be reigning, not rejected as He is now, and when all nations shall be blessed in Him, evil shall be subdued and righteousness become triumphant, instead of being, as we are, in a world of which Satan is said to be the prince' and ' the god '—a world morally ended at the Cross, and now under the doom of heaven, and going on to be dashed in pieces on the rock of eternal judgment and perdition of ungodly men, as the Apocalypse of Jesus Christ clearly reveals. God is not to improve this present world, but to save believers out of it and then to judge it; and He gives Christians intelligence of His doings in the present and of His purposes for the future, in order to keep them in their proper place-the place of men risen with Christ;' also to keep them at their proper work and from embarking in social and philanthropic works for the amelioration of the world, which He has not set them to do. God has raised up from the dead His Son Jesus, whom men had cast out and killed; set Him at His right hand in the heavens; and sent down the Holy Ghost to unite believers to Him there outside the world. And such are the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus-members of His body and members one of another;' a risen company, a new creation, a people whose citizenship is in heaven, whose Father, Lord, and home are there, and they momentarily expecting the return of their glorified Master, to take them thither in glorified bodies like His own; a people who by natural birth were men of earth, but by new and spiritual birth have become children of God, and are henceforth linked livingly by the Holy Spirit with the risen Man of glory in the heaven's. I grant you the Christian's position is entirely abnormal, for he who was by nature formed for earth is by grace cut out of it, and formed by the Holy Ghost for the fellowship of the Father and the Son in the heavens.
" The heart must be formed by means of Christ for Christ in heaven; and the kind of divine truth that helps Christians to the true knowledge of Christ is truth of the greatest sanctifying power. The heavenly side of divine truth, or separation by the Holy Ghost in a new creation to Christ in the heavens, is little known either in Stockholm or in Edinburgh; hence saints of God are found in all sorts of doubtful circumstances and associations. They do not see that they have died out of Adam and are united to Christ, risen and glorified, by the Holy Ghost come down from Him for that purpose: and hence they think they are formed anew merely to be better citizens of this world and to improve the world: and thus their being created in Christ Jesus,' and having their citizenship in heaven ' (Philip. 3: 20), are ignored or forgotten; and hence the heavenly life of Christ is not lived by them, but only the better life of a man of the
earth! But we are in Christ' risen, not in Adam fallen and dead in sin: and if any one be in Christ, there is a new creation.' Christ is the Beginning' and Head' of it (Col. 1:18), as well as of His body the assembly,' that He might have the first place in all things.' Being saved people, we have ceased our existence as men in the flesh,' connected with Adam, fallen and dead in trespasses and sins, and have got a new life in Christ, the last Adam,' the Second Man' (1 Cor. 15), and our sphere of existence is in the Spirit,' for ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit,' if so be Spirit of God dwell in you (Rom. 8:9). Our life and walk through the world must therefore be in keeping with our birth, rank, standing, relationship, and world; and the ends of the New Testament epistles go very minutely into divine rules and regulations for this walk in newness of life' (Rom. 6:4). They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world,' as our Lord said '(John 17:14). What a responsible thing for believers in Christ to be left here in one body' to -live Christ; for I no longer live, but Christ liveth in me,' as St. Paul said (Gal. 2:20), I have gone out of my sin-state by the Cross of Christ and death with Him there, and come into a new life in resurrection in and with Christ: I am crucified with Christ;' that was an end of me as a son of Adam (Gal. 2:20): And no longer live I' (said the apostle, say I and all believers), but God who is rich in mercy... hath quickened us together with Christ (by grace are ye saved), and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenlies in Christ' (Eph. 4-6). That is the beginning of my existence as a child of God; for, once dead in sins, I get life in living association with Christ, who is our life,' and my future in this new creation' in this world and in heaven is linked with His.
" Thus for me to live is Christ'—not philanthropy, social reformation, or even the salvation of souls: no I but for me to live is Christ.' As the ancient tale goes of a noble Roman, that if after death his heart were examined they would find ‘Rome' enstamped on it; so might St. Paul have said of Christ—' For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain; ' for then he would be 'with Christ,' which he said is very much better.' He was a man of one governing idea, and this he thus expresses: 'Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death' (Philip. 1: 20).
" The body. is the sphere of Christ's power, and it is with the body that we give expression to practical Christianity; for it is the Spirit's vessel and agent wherefore glorify God in your body,' says St. Paul (1 Cor. 6) Where our bodies are, there is our fellowship. Do ye not know that your bodies are members of Christ? ' Again, Do ye not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, which is in you, which ye have of God; and ye are not your own? for ye have been bought with a price: glorify now then God in your body.' [There the verse ends in the Greek: it is all about the body.] It is very solemn to be told our bodies are 'members of Christ' and temples of the Holy Ghost' who is in us.
" This makes Christianity at once eminently spiritual and practical. We have the Holy Spirit in us as our power to reproduce Christ, and our bodies his redeemed or price-bought members to enable us to give expression outwardly to the life of Christ on earth. By the Holy Spirit the life of Christ in heaven is communicated and energized, and through the members of our bodies we may express practically this new and divine life. For old things have passed away, and all things have become new' (2 Cor. 5:17), and all things' in the new creation are of God '-not anything of the old man' renovated or renewed and sublimated, but positively new. That which is born of the Spirit is spirit.' For in Christ Jesus neither is circumcision anything nor uncircumcision; but new creation' (Gal. 6:16). Not a particle of the old creation goes into the new. It is not old Adam rehabilitated; but new creation; ' knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be annulled, that we should no longer serve sin' (Rom. 6:6). Now if we have died with Christ' (verse 7), (the end of man in this world is by death, so that, by faith, we see an end of ourselves in the death of Christ;) we have died with Christ' out of the sin-sphere where we were under sin's dominion, who like a tyrant lorded it over us. Not only has Christ died for my sins-the bad things that have come out of me -but I have died with Christ to sin,' the nature that produces bad things, and sin is condemned,' judged, and annulled in the cross, the sinner's self, the old man,' gets his doom also in Christ's death (Rom. 8:3); So also reckon yourselves dead to sin; but alive to God in Christ Jesus' (Rom. 6:11). Christ liveth unto God; ' and we, being alive unto God in Christ Jesus,' can now also live unto God: Yield yourselves unto God as alive from among the dead, and your members instruments of righteousness unto God. For sin shall not have dominion over you; for ye are not under law, but under grace' (Rom. 6:13;14.) Ye also have been made dead to the law by the body of Christ, that ye might be to another, who has been raised up from among the dead in order that ye might bear fruit to God,' so that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter' (Rom. 7:4-6). Dead to sin and alive unto God, we walk in newness of life, and sin shall not have dominion over us; ' dead to the law by the
body of Christ,' we 'bring forth, fruit to God' and serve in newness of spirit.'
" Our life then is life in Christ risen-life to God; and we are to let it go up as an offering and a sacrifice, well pleasing to God for a sweet-smelling savor, as Christ's offering of Himself unto God was (Eph. 5:2). 'As is the Heavenly One, such also are the heavenly ones' Cor. 15: 48). With what power the Spirit's exhortation comes to us-' If therefore ye be risen with Christ, seek the things which are above, where the Christ is sitting at the right hand of God. Have your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on the earth; for ye have died, and your life is hid with the Christ in God. When the Christ appears, who is our life, then shall ye also appear with him in glory' (Col. 3:1-4.) Having put off the old man with his deeds (in the death of Christ) and having put on the new' (in Him risen from the dead) the exhortations of the Spirit to express this new man' through means of the body are very minute and practical (Col. 3); but Christ is everything, and in all' (Col. 4:11). He is before all as an object; in all' as a life. Hence all are responsible for living the heavenly risen life of Jesus in their bodies in all the relationships of time and in all the intercourse of their daily life.
" I have written a very long letter; but seeing that I mentioned to you that I had seen into the meaning of Christianity so as no longer to be able to go on with the mere improvement of man, as he is in the old creation, I felt it necessary to justify my new position by the word of God: and that has led me to show where we are now, as believers in Christ, and that we are expected to fall in with the philanthropy of our Savior-God,' as those who are 'alive unto God' in Christ-`risen with Christ created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God has before prepared that we Should walk in them' (Eph. 2:10). The cross of Christ tells its sad tale that the world' is enmity against God, and unimprovable. It was the judgment of this world the end of the world,' morally when it rejected and crucified Christ, for it thereby proved itself incorrigible; for not only did it refuse to be reconciled by God in Christ in person bestowing all manner of blessings, but it murdered the Reconciler. Wherefore God is not any longer trying to improve it: but He is calling out men from it by the gospel of His grace, and associating them in a living and divine way with His Son in the heavens; for the whole question is now about the worth and glory of His exalted Son whom the world has cast out. The Spirit has come for this object: He shall glorify me, for He shall take of mine, and show it unto you' (John 16) Ye shall be witnesses unto me.' He is sitting on the Father's throne now (Rev. 3:21), and He will come in manifested glory soon, and sit upon the throne of His glory (Matt. 25), and He will subdue all things to Himself, and reign to the glory of God the Father. (1 Cor. 15)
"This present, evil world will end in a time of judgment among the nations, and terrible tribulation, such as has not been from the foundation of the world. God's word tells us that the sun of this dispensation will set in blood when the book of Revelation will have its great and awful fulfillment. It is blessed to think that God's word tells of a happy and holy time beyond the flood of fire and judgment of ungodly men, when earth shall celebrate its Sabbath of holy rest for a thousand years (Rev. 20) Then the world will be divinely changed: and righteousness shall reign over all its nations, who shall walk by the light of the heavenly city, whose light is the Lamb. The sentence of this world is passed: its doom and punishment are certain, and cannot be far off. God, by the Holy Ghost, is gathering a body and a bride for Christ His Son out of it, and giving such His life, place, relationship, and work, walk, and prospects: and He is not touching the world at all so as to make it better, but He is doing this one work of calling out and preparing a bride for the glory of his Son, our heavenly Bridegroom; and this is the work that should engross all the children of God, whom He has called out of the world in its every shape and form to stand outside of it in the place it gave His well-beloved Son when they rejected and crucified Him. We have God's mind expressly given in His Word respecting this, that we may not throw away our time, means, and energies, on objects of our own: for it teaches that while human philanthropy relieves man where he is, and leaves him there, GOD'S PHILANTHROPY completely saves him, and brings him to Himself in glory to have Christ as gain' in the Father's house, where His glory is fully seen, and His saints are conformed to His image.
"What then makes a practical Christian That a man should be completely absorbed, and continually occupied with Christ, so that he seems to the world to be as one beside himself' for Christ; like as Paul seemed to Festus, when he tells of Christ appearing to him; and Festus says, with a loud voice, Thou art mad, Paul.' (Acts 26) But he said, I am not mad, most excellent Festus, but utter words of truth and soberness.' Again, in Philip. 3. he seems to be beside himself;' for, having given up all for Christ on earth, he presses on towards the goal to win Christ and have Him in the glory of God in the heavens. For whether we be beside ourselves, it is to God; or are sober, it is for you. For the love of Christ eonstraineth us; having judged this, that if one died for all, then all died; and he died for all, that they who live should no longer live to themselves, but to Him who died for them and rose again' (2 Cor. 5:13,14).
"If we have the excellency of the knowledge of Christ-if He Himself be our exclusive object, as He was St. Paul's—we will live such a life of practical separation from the world and devotedness to Christ, and of occupation with his objects, / as to make the world say, These men are either mad, or, they
are in possession of a divine secret of which we know nothing."

Westminster Confession of Faith

April 10, 1877.
I MIGHT as well have replied to your last letter at once, and said that I had no desire to wade through the " Westminster Confession of Faith," or whatever else it may be called, with any purpose of writing about the book itself, in detail.
Personally there was nothing in it which could have profited me, either for "communion in the truth" with Christ, or in service for Him, as gathering souls to Him where He now is!
Controversially, it presented a temptation, but this I refused; so that the whole matter has been authoritatively ordered (as they say elsewhere) " to lie on the table."
It caught my eye this morning, and upon looking it through again, I am more confirmed in the futility, and one might add the fatality, of creeds from Scripture; and of confessions of faith from creeds; as well as of catechisms (large or small) from confessions; were it only for the simple but obvious reason that God in His wisdom and grace has given us exactly the revelation of Himself and of His Son that most suits His own glory and our blessing, both now and hereafter; and this is contained in what we rightly call " the word of God."
There is, however, another reason, and of great importance, as. regards " this book," which comprises " the Westminster Confession of Faith "-that, even supposing it drawn from the whole word of God by "the assembly of divines," however learned and godly they may have been, yet it could only in result be the minimum of what would satisfy them to agree upon (that is, if they were expected to be unanimous); and this came out at last, as the fruit of their labors, in " a creed published and proclaimed by authority." The word of God was in this way set aside, and conscience as well as faith interfered with, in their
distinct and direct exercise before God, upon the revelation He has made of Himself to us as a whole.
A. very serious question arises out of this, viz. that if the truth of God's own word is reduced to the minimum of what will satisfy an " assembly of divines and others," what becomes of the maximum upon which they could not agree together? Evidently this maximum is in the word of God itself, and the minimum, both in quality and quantity, is only what suited the spiritual perceptions or the moral mind of the assembly. Nor is this " assembly of divines " fair to itself and its own reputation, for the few (upon this graduated scale of theological investigation) who would rise higher than the many, must necessarily compromise their own convictions, and yield their judgment to the lowest, if unanimity is demanded. Or, if a majority is allowed to be decisive, still the question remains, decisive of what? It is a very solemn alternative, in all such assemblies thus convened, that the maximum (which is God's) is the precious thing sacrificed; or, if not yielded up, who gets it? Certainly none of the churches represented by this convocation in England, Scotland, or Ireland, for they accept the Confession of Faith, and "the minimum" of what the divines could agree upon. My question is again repeated on behalf of the truth and of God and His word-Where is "the maximum" gone? and who is he that has craftily got it away from the members of Convocation, and cunningly substituted "the shields of brass" for the golden shields of Parvaim which adorned the temple in the days of Solomon, when "the glory of God " dwelt therein?
It will be melancholy to pursue this subject farther, and to speak to you of " the covenants-the national and solemn league -the engagement of duties-directories for public worship-form of church government-with the Acts of Assembly and Parliament relative to and approbative of the same," which all lead men back into the wrong world, upon the fatal principle of reducing a thing by its lowest term to its lowest quantity!
In continuance, let me ask you, or any Christian who knows the maximum, and maintains it by separation from these convocations (with all else who by grace will), What are the terms " agreed upon by this assembly of divines at Westminster, with the assistance of commissioners from the Church of Scotland "? One of their title-pages expresses these terms, " as a part of the covenanted uniformity in religion betwixt the churches of Christ, in the kingdoms of Scotland, England, and Ireland; " and, moreover, "ratified and established by Acts of Parliament," etc.
Upon this showing, and according to this rule, these churches cannot be " the body of Christ;" it is openly a worldly system, and for man as a citizen of the earth. God's maximum is lost. That is to say, a believer in Christ, in union with " the Last Adam" in, life and righteousness, as Head of the new creation of God, is dropped out; so also is the Lord in heaven, as " Head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him which filleth all in all;" as likewise the abiding presence of the Holy Ghost, come down from the glorified Christ at Pentecost, to dwell in and baptize the members into this unity upon earth. Endeavoring to keep " the unity of the Spirit" in the bond of peace is not even in their minimum, to say nothing of "the bride," and "the marriage of the Lamb." As for the blessed hope of the Lord's coming, and "the taking-up of the saints to meet Him in the air," it is outside this vaunted Confession of Faith and its catechisms, as well as "the sum of saving knowledge," etc.
In vain do you look for the coming of " the Son of man in glory," when He shall take to Himself His great power and reign over this world, and order it in righteousness and universal blessing for every creature; till finally " He will deliver up the kingdom to God, even the Father, that God may be all in all." Indeed, most of what concerns the purposes and counsels of "the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,'' both as to the heavens and the earth, whether now or hereafter, are left behind in the maximum of divine revelation.
We may well say to each other, How could such disclosures come out, under "an ordinance of the Lords and Commons assembled in Parliament, for the calling of an assembly of learned and godly divines and others for the settling" of the government and liturgy of these national churches of England and Scotland; as also "to establish, ratify, and confirm the Presbyterian Church government and discipline by kirk sessions, presbyteries, provincial synods, and general assemblies"?
The order of God for the earth in the millennium, by the restoration and conversion of Israel under the rule and reign of the Lord the Messiah, as well as the future blessing of the Gentiles through them, when gathered to " Jerusalem, the city of the great King," and the deliverance of creation from its groaning into "the glorious liberty of the sons of God," might also be adduced in proof that what most concerns the manifested glory of God and of Christ, in the midst of His earthly people on this earth (and the binding of Satan, and casting him into the bottomless pit), have no place in this compendium " done at Westminster and in Edinburgh."
It is lamentable to see that in this conclave "of divines and commissioners assembled in the chapel called King Henry the VII:s Chapel, aided by committees deputed by both the Houses of Parliament," the new order of manhood set up in the risen and glorified" Second Man," at the right hand of God in heaven, as the beginning and Head of a new race of men, "whose bodies are the temples of the Holy Ghost" on earth, has been entirely overlooked. The new order of God in a heavenly sphere and by a new system, of which the ascended Son of man is become now the center and Lord, passes into the same oblivion, as a matter of course, or rather as a necessary consequence of the former. All that is set apart and called out by God in grace to form and distinguish this new order of creation, in heaven above and the earth beneath, presently with Christ in manifested glory and blessing, is in eclipse. The necessities which required our being "born again" as men, to see what the natural eye had not seen, or to understand what the heart had never conceived, in this new order of things " which God has prepared for them that love Him" for present enjoyment and communion with Christ, are, alas! overlooked, because the objects themselves are out of mind, and catechetical examinations substituted.
How could it be otherwise? They follow as naturally as cause and effect; nor is this all the mischief, for " the anointing and unction of the Holy Ghost," whereby a saint is competent "to understand the things that are freely given to us of God," slips away with the new birth. Earth takes the place of heaven, and the first man becomes the object of interest, instead of the Second Man "in the glory of God" on high. As a consequence, Christ is reduced to these sacraments and ordinances, or else connected with forms of worship and ceremonial observances authorized by divines, and established by houses of Parliament, for the populations of England and Scotland and Ireland, and for "man in the flesh" coming from anywhere else.
Thus "the fine gold is become" not merely " dim," but turned into dross and corrupted, and Christianity proper is dragged down to the very level of Judaism, as regards God and man, upon the footing of the Decalogue; as though this standing remained an unsolved problem, and Christ had not accomplished redemption from under its curse, and its very principle, hundreds of years ago. I need secarcely remind you that a Christian's charter runs thus: " Sin shall not have dominion over you, for ye are not under law but under grace."
In fact, these churches recognize man as under the law and covenant; and yet put his offspring into sacramental grace by baptism. It is true the minister only declares this rite " to be the admission of the party baptized ". into outward privileges, against which I have nothing to say. But he then affirms
"it to be a sign and seal of the covenant of grace; of his in-grafting into Christ; of regeneration; of remission of sins," etc. He thus openly takes the blessings, which belong only to a Christian by faith in Jesus Christ, as born of the Spirit; and confers them upon one who is as yet merely in the flesh. Surely this is not in our " confession of faith," but a sorry departure from the "grace and truth" of the gospel. Thus, all that God has done to redeem man by blood, and lift him up to His own glory with " the Son of His love," who is already there as the forerunner, has been so obscured by this combination of human wisdom and legislative authority as to lie " a maximum" wrapt up in the word of God, for those who make it their confession of faith and hope.
Practically I repeat that this " covenanted uniformity " finds its starting point and gets its motive power from the little babe, an infant of days, born of the flesh; with its parents, and godfathers and godmothers, its sponsors, etc., on the one side; and on the other, there stands the Ecclesiastic to declare "the remission of sins, and an ingrafting into Christ," by the assumed efficacy of sacerdotal and sacramental grace, as administered to a sucking child! Only stop the nurse and the infant at the church door, and the minister's hands are empty; yea, all this imposing machinery would be at a stand-still.
If there were no infants brought to be baptized, there would be no proper boys and girls for "the Shorter Catechism," nor recognized adults for " the Larger." In vain would they into Christ," by the assumed efficacy, religously educated, to bring under the obligations and covenants suited to riper years " and greater capacity."
But enough I have merely sought to show that what was " approved by the General Assembly, and ratified and established by Acts of Parliament, as the publick and avowed confession of the Church of Scotland, with the proofs from the Scripture " (see the title-page to the Confession of Faith), does not recognize a believer as " a citizen of heaven " now, and one with the Son of man in glory-" not of this world, even as Christ was not of the world." On the contrary, this book and its contents, from cover to cover, recognizes " man in the flesh," from his very infancy, and makes provision for his advancement by the means and appliances we have examined: and by giving him " the law as a rule of life" (which life?) he is encouraged and stimulated by vows, covenants, and solemn leagues, to prove the strength of this life in the flesh, and what the man is worth who goes through it to despair, and the cry " 0 wretched man that I am I" It is the opposite of the Christian who begins as a dead man in this world-alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord -and one with the risen Lord in heaven the Second Man; having his citizenship and his affections where Christ sits.
There are two classes or companies now, as there were when Paul wrote to the Colossians. To the one he said, " Ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.... Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth," etc.; and this is surely Christian position and unearthly practice still. To the other Paul says, " If ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of this world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances (touch not, taste not, handle not, which all are to perish with the using) after the commandments and doctrines of men?" and this is as surely " ritualism."
The heavenly system of God's new order, with the Second Adam at its head on high, and the old earthly system, " with its worldly sanctuary" and man in the flesh alive upon the earth, mistaking death and life too, as known in Christ, and therefore subject to ordinances, are the two subjects brought before us by all these considerations. May the Lord open the eyes and ears of His beloved ones, that they may take their places with the departed Lord and find their present position where He has found His, in the Father's love; and live out " the life of Christ" on earth, the little while we wait for Him.
The Holy Ghost came down from heaven at Pentecost to bear witness to the glorified Son of man on high; and to gather out and quicken the members of Christ into life and union with the Last Adam, the head and beginning of God's new order of manhood, and of another creation in the heavens.
" Outside the camp to Jesus, bearing His reproach," is our present opportunity, and the refusal of this "covenanted uniformity in religion" affords a fine occasion to any exercised conscience for getting out of forms, into the truth of the Church.
Any one who, by faith and communion with Christ through the truth, sees what the nature and calling by the Holy Ghost of the "church of the living God" really is, upon this earth, has got the light by which to contrast this " covenanted uniformity in religion " with our real unity in Christ by divine revelation from the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, and to put himself right.
What a mercy when one discovers this difference, and gets out of the old order. of God for the earth into His new order in Christ for the heavens I One step, and a bold one, clears the distance by simple obedience to His revealed' mind and will.
Uniformity in religion for Scotland or England must needs be accompanied by a Public Confession of belief; sustained by its appointed ordinances, and an ordained clergy in ministry, on behalf of the people.
Moreover, such a religion requires to have its " worldly sanctuary, as by law established," for the performance of all its offices and functions; and goes upon the arithmetical principle of church-extension, to meet the requirements of an increasing population! But where, in all this, is "the faith once delivered to the saints "? And, what is become of "the faith of God's elect, and the truth which is after godliness "? Yea, who are " God's elect," and where may they be found? What in these last days is " the faith " for which we are to contend? are questions for grave and individual consideration before the Lord!

The Question and the Crisis

Halifax, Nova Scotia, April 19th. MY DEAR BROTHER-I send you some details on the statements made in the papers you sent me. Mr. Smith says, Ezra 9:11. proves that Deut. 7 must be from the prophets; but we have exactly the same statement in Ex. 34:11-17; so that his proof proves nothing, unless Exodus be from the prophets too. But prophet is a mere word for those who spoke the word of God, as Abraham is called a prophet, and Moses.
Besides, the argument is an absurdity. It is an absurdity to pretend that Ezra, a ready scribe in the law of Moses, who, it is alleged, compiled it in its last form, should speak as if it was not given by Moses at all, and say it was the prophets, and yet say in the same sentence, Israel was going into the land to possess it when the commandment was given, as he does. Only a rationalist, who can believe anything but the simple truth, but no one of sound sense, could swallow such a fancy as this. If Ezra referred to Deuteronomy (which is very likely, as he speaks of going in to possess the land, which characterizes that book), then he assuredly refers to it as given before the Israelites entered into the land. None but those accustomed to assume, and justify too, forgery in documents which pretend to be divine, could allege that Ezra attributes to prophets of the seventh or eighth century a statement of the law which he was teaching as the law of Moses; and, in the deep grief of his heart about their sins before God, accredit and state the forgery in speaking to God. Upon the face of it, to apply "thy servants the prophets," saying, " the land into which ye go to possess it" to prophets hundreds of years after they possessed it, is a gross absurdity. The defilement of the land is not particularly spoken of in Deut. 7.; it is much more in other chapters, and more especially in Lev. 18
I must add a few words on the prudent, wise speech reported in your Scotch journals as that of Dr. Rainy. I can only take it as it appears, "wary and well considered." Supposing, speaking of course as a mere natural man, that some one had given my mother a box on the ear, instead of knocking him down or thrusting him away, I say, Well, but I must see if the fingers reached to the ear: otherwise this is not a box on the ear; if it only struck the cheek, the accusation is not correct. With what feelings should one view such a son? With profound contempt. Here I must add indignation, because the faith of thousands is in question. The speech would insist that it should not be felt there was a crisis. There is a crisis, and the crisis is this: Whether the Free Church of Scotland in its public profession be, however many may object to its tenets or forms, a body maintaining the faith of Christianity as based on the word of God, or not. It is not Professor Smith who is on trial; it is the Free Church. I have no interest in either save as a Christian ought to be interested in all men and all good; but in the authority of the word of God every one who is loyal to Christ must be. Members of commissions may laugh if it be asked, Are we to have a Bible or no? but this is the question. Germans may hold, still pretending to be Christians, that the allegation of miracles at once renders a book unhistorical; but the proofs by which they convince others that it cannot be are the proofs by which Mr. Smith would prove that the Pentateuch, and especially Deuteronomy, are unhistorical, and these are with heartless indifference, on the ground of legal technicalities, to be allowed to be valid on the plea that Mr. Smith on other grounds holds them trustworthy. And what grounds are these? That, because these Shemitic historians, like Thucydides or Livy giving speeches they invent as spoken by the persons they wrote about, do not think it fraud to put the words in their heroes' mouths, we must take them as they gave them, and they were received at the time; and, this is divine inspiration! Does he mean, or does the speech mean, that this fabled Shemitic system was held at the time for divine inspiration? That they received what was known to be put into Moses' mouth by a modern author to polish crude legislation, as the WORD OF GOD by the mouth of Moses, saying, " Jehovah spake unto Moses saying," when they knew and received it as Mr. S. does now, (namely, that it was not so given), though some few portions might be true traditions of what Moses taught? Let us see what the "wary and well-considered " compromise speech in the journal amounts to. Mr. Smith is guarded enough. We have this account of Scripture from him: The written record of the revelation of God's will which is necessary unto salvation makes use of certain forms of literary presentation which have always been thought legitimate in ordinary composition, but which were not always understood to be used in the Bible. Used by whom? How carefully the inspiration of the writings is avoided! Mr. S. does not call this fraud as Dr. Kuenen honestly does; (" pious fraud "): that is his opinion, but not the question.
In classical authors no one is troubled about it; men did the best they could, or what they would, to present matters as they saw them, or would please their readers. Did the Holy Ghost do so? The record uses the fraud of literary compositions which I do not call fraud! But where is God in the matter? How carefully He is left out! What more can an infidel want? What does an extreme infidel as Dr. Kuenen, or a violent-tempered but more sober-minded infidel as Ewald, or one in borrowed plumes as Mr. Newman, desire than to reduce the Scriptures to this level? This is what the system of Mr. S. does. He now tells us that for other reasons (which he withheld in what went out to all the world, and till this was called in question) he believes in the authority of these books; but the proofs he gives to all the world, and which are unrecalled, are proofs, not (mind) of a date, but that the books are not what they pretend to be. Does he believe that the composers and compilers and polishers were 'inspired to say that their work was God speaking by Moses? Nothing can be clearer than that it was so given, and sanctioned by the Lord's authority as such. Their nature, their authority, their contents, depended on these contents being inspired. They had no other, they have no other; the very circumstances are identified with the truth of their being by Moses and from God, for that is inseparably interwoven with the history they contain. On this I shall speak again in touching on the reported speech. But the Scriptures, even in his defense, are not spoken of by Mr. S. when defined as inspired. When he justifies the statement by quotation of the Confession, they are a record of the revelation of God's will but formed after the pattern of literary compositions which ascribe to orators or the like speeches invented for them. This is not inspiration of the Scriptures. It may lead us to distrust " Confessions " as no better than a sieve, as a means of securing truth, and saving those who hold the opposite of what their authors held, but that is all. But I turn to the reported speech and the wary defense of Mr. S. The speech saves the credit of the speaker. ' On reading the article it was with the greatest pos4ible feeling of apprehension and pain. Not only he did not agree, but it would not meet with general approbation; he had a very strong impression that they were fitted in the greatest degree to create bewilderment, anxiety, and misapprehension in the mind of members of the church.' What about? Was it not as to the authority and inspiration of the Scriptures? Yet such a question, we are told, cannot possibly arise, or might be soon settled. Now, I do ask what was the bewilderment and anxiety about? Mr. S. accepts and gives the proofs of infidels that the Scriptures were the development of crude legislation and national life, large portions professing to be what they were not, nor of the age nor of the person who was stated to have received them from God as God's law-gives these proofs as general satisfactory proofs that the case was thus, without a hint that he thought otherwise. He propagates infidelity, for everybody knows it is infidelity and the elaborately wrought out theory of infidels; which we are now to understand he does not believe, though he believes all the proofs of it. As to the Canon, one book was really a love-song about the purity of northern Israel contrasted with Solomon, which we should have lost but for a false theory about its being an allegory; but the bewilderment and anxiety was not about the inspiration or Canon of Scripture, nor whether we are to have the whole Bible! But Mr. S. and all agree, we are told, that the Bible is inspired. What then was his article about? The escape from the difficulty is: The question is not about inspiration, but whether certain positions brought in, in connection with the explanation of Professor Smith's views on the Bible, are really inconsistent with this position. A queer roundabout sentence; but have we no views of Mr. S. on the Bible, or parts of it? Nothing but positions in connection with the explanation of his views? And is what every one knows to be characteristic of modern infidelity in the theological sphere to be spread broadcast by professors of theology, without a hint of anything else? Nay, accepting really as desirable progress, views that are to every honest mind totally destructive of the inspiration of Scripture, and then to be told there is no question about inspiration? And how is it excused in a compromising way? We are not, we are told, to deal with it as if some party were rising up to unsettle and undermine these great doctrines. But a party has arisen up, and, as every one occupied with these subjects knows, unsettling and undermining these great doctrines; and all that Mr. Smith has done is to popularize them in a well-known book of general science, the Encyclopaedia Britannica, wherever the English language is spoken in the two continents. He has reproduced and disseminated for all English readers, and as valid, the well-known modern grounds of infidelity as to these great truths. Scotland and the Free Church have been the source, or, if not the source, the instrument, of spreading over the world modern infidelity as to inspiration and the canon of Scripture as a part of the more accurate knowledge of modern science in a popular publication. That is the broad fact, and no special pleading in church courts and committees in Scotland will alter it; nor, it is to be feared, if the Free Church clear itself, undo it.
The speech defends the position of the committee as far as it dares; it does not agree with Mr. S., but defends its " deliverances" on the substantive merits, mark, not on the competency of the committee. "You will not succeed in laying a libel for heresy in connection with this view of Deuteronomy." I should not call it heresy: infidelity is its true character. However, the published speech declares that to hold that a book purporting to be spoken by Moses immediately before Israel's entrance into the land, and directly from Jehovah as words from His mouth in reference to their conduct as so entering, was not so spoken but written some hundreds of years after, proving this by passages alleged to be in contradiction with what was ordained by Jehovah originally, is not heresy as to the inspiration of the books. Such false statement, it is alleged, was a generally allowed license of literary composition. Were these late modifiers of the old law moved by the Holy Ghost to say that Jehovah spake it all by Moses before Israel's going in to possess the land? " It is," we are told, " a different case where there is a general disposition in certain quarters, or in any quarter, to move off from these fundamental doctrines." Is there none such? Every one knows that large masses of Protestants, and Protestant teachers, have moved off from these fundamental doctrines both in Germany and in England; that their works are translated into English, and have largely affected the public mind; that this attack on the inspiration of the Scriptures is one of the chief characteristics of modern infidelity; that the "Deuteronomist " is one of their chief points along with the " Great Unnamed," Zechariah, and the Song of Songs as a northern pastoral. Now, I will suppose that as yet this hacking up of Scripture has not penetrated into the Free Church, at least in "any quarter." The speech assures that an attempt to make heresy of these views will not succeed. A man is " not particularly wise who is particularly sure about them;" that is about the usual orthodox view of the inspiration of Deuteronomy, etc. True, "a man is not particularly wise who is particularly ready to raise questions about them." The questions on many points as to authorship, date, and so on, are " awkward questions." " They are really not matters of faith at all." How calculated to relieve "bewilderment, anxiety, and misapprehension, in the minds of members of the church "! Mr. S. had done something to relieve this feeling in his answer to the sub-committee. He tells us of a " persuasion of the divine authority of the book (of Deuteronomy), which rests on the witness of our Lord, the testimonium, Spiritus Sancti. It would be possible to adjust the result thus. But this the speech cuts away from under our feet. As to the Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch, it "does not believe that Jesus and His apostles ever said anything on that subject." But kirk commissioners will hardly make sober men think that it is declared by inspiration that " Jehovah spake unto Moses, saying," when it was not Moses at all; and that when the Lord says ' Moses' writings," " He never said anything on that subject."
It is trifling to talk of who wrote down the words; the question is, Is it a divinely given, and therefore perfect, account of what God spake and did by Moses, and was really uttered by Him, interwoven as it is with all the details of the history of God's people? We know that, save that to the Galatians, Paul wrote none of his epistles. In one case we know who did it for him: " I, Tertius, who wrote this epistle." He signed each, saluting in grace, that it might be authentic. Does any one think because Tertius adds that, sanctioned as it is by the Pauline salutation, we have not Paul's inspired writings? All this is child's play, and worse. The speech does " not see how a very conclusive argument could be raised against any one maintaining that the book of Deuteronomy was written after the promised land was occupied, and therefore by some one living in the promised land, though he was directed and enabled to embody in that book the authentic declarations and speeches of Moses." This will tacitly, seemingly at least, screen the infidel system which insists on its being written afterward in the land and not by Moses. But save in one fatal word it does not touch the question. It is perfectly immaterial when and where it was written, as in Tertius's writing the Epistle to the Romans, provided I have a divinely given and therefore divinely authentic word and reproduction of what Moses said before Israel entered into the land, as the book professes to be. We have no statement that Moses textually wrote anything but the song in 32. and the law put beside the ark of the covenant, but there is no " embodying " what Moses said in some other record. It professes to give what Moses said by God's command and with God's authority to the people before their entry into the land, stating where it was spoken; and all through the book it is almost chapter by chapter repeated, "the land which ye go in to possess." Now who wrote it is no more important than Tertius in Romans; but if it be not Moses who spoke the things before Israel's crossing the Jordan, and really the directions for Israel in the land when actually going in to possess it, the book is a false book, not an inspired one-an imposition of some later hand, not a revelation of God. And this is what the system in fact alleges.
It does not "embody " what Moses spoke. It gives, and states that it gives, what he spake and where. And if this be not true, the book is not true. But the statement of the speech, while screening the statement of Mr. S., does not touch it. That statement, as of all the infidel school who hold this, is that the
Deuteronomist put Moses' name in as a license of literary composition; that it was written centuries afterward-some Mosaic revelations and modifications and adaptations of later development thrown into the form of a declaration and testimony by Moses. A crude legislation-such is the theory-.was developed and perfected by the priests and the national life of the people. Let any one read Deuteronomy and see what it professes to be, and say if such be its character;-whether it " embodies " sayings of Moses, or whether it be not, save the last chapter which has nothing to do with the question, the directions of God by Moses to Israel before going into the land. I deny the alleged additions and contradictions. That there are provisions for a state of things which did not exist in the wilderness is quite true, a considerable part consists of civil enactments adapted to their condition in the land when the kingly government did not exist. There are two probable interpolations, like " there it is unto this day" (2: 10-12, 20-23), and possibly one other passage besides (3: 9), which may or may not be; that is, one or two small parentheses evidently such, which do not affect the substance of the book, nor have anything to do with a later date.
And let it be here remarked, the question is not about dates or writers where Scripture does not state who speaks or writes, but about inspiration. People may discuss who wrote the Hebrews as no author is named; it may be wise or unwise; but that the Spirit of God dictated it, that it is inspired, is another question. I hold the tradition as to Luke and Mark wholly irrelevant. The question is, Are they inspired accounts of the Lord's life? Learning from Peter is nothing to the purpose if they. are not inspired; from Paul as an eye-witness Luke could not: indeed his own statement leaves no ground for it. The question is this: When Deuteronomy says, These are the words which Moses spake, are they really such? or something concocted, centuries after, out of a crude legislation given under Moses through the development of national life, by priests or prophets who contended against them? Though, indeed, we are called on to believe that the law which was the priest's work, at least the Deuteronomic or more advanced form of it, was concocted by a prophet, one of the class opposed to the priests; for we are to believe anything provided it be not inspiration and the truth of God. I have nothing to do with Mr. S. or commissions of the Free Church. The question is far wider than that; it is of the propagation of an infidel view of Scripture all over the English-speaking world in a popular book of science. The Free Church is indeed on its trial as to faithfulness, but the evil has to be combated on its own merits. It may be sorrowful to see every professing body of Christians more or less giving up the truth; but the question is there, and we cannot avoid it. The word of God, the Scriptures, are what we are taught to rely on, and those who are taught of God will rely on them. The enemies' attacks are especially directed against them. Cavils and special pleading will not do in this conflict; it must be the faith of God's elect, or spiritual "traditores" on whom no reliance can be placed in the conflict.
I have had some doubt as to sending you this, because I believe, as I have said above, the question must be treated on its merits, and this is (save the first paragraph, as to Ezra) on the kirk commission, and what is reported as Dr. Rainy's speech, to me far more painful than Mr. S.'s article. It is a question of the Free Church about inspiration as well as about inspiration itself. It is only a bye-battle, and it ought to be treated for God on its own merits. But if you think it may be useful for souls, you may use it. But the question is raised, and will have to be discussed, not as a local but as a fundamental question. As I have told you before, it has long pressed upon me as an impending conflict.

Non Eadem Imago

OPTIME, CARISSIME!-Literas tuas accepi ... .. Vides inter me et to nonnihil discriminis esse. Tibi non placuit, quod prioribus literis scripsi. Interrogas, cur Ioh. 14: 9 in hunt locum adhibuerim ac non talem locum, qui esset de ipsa re de qua ageretur. Imo satis est respondere, ilium locum ad bane rem pertinere. Certissima sunt haec duo: 1°, qui Filium videt Patrem videt; 2°, ex fide non ex operibus est iustificatio. Que si certissima sunt, haec aeque certa sequuntur: (1°), falsa est omnis theologia, que aliam facit Patris imaginem aliam Filii; (2°), falsa est omnis theologia, que ex operibus pendit iustificationem. Qui vero docet, Patrem postulasse, Filium solvisse, pretium quoddam Patri postulanti, is aliam facit Patris imaginem aliam Filii, imo aliam facit Patris aliam Filii iustitiam. Quod si haec, que in Patre est iustitia pretium postulans, bona qualitas est, Filius non Deus est neque Dei similis; invenitur enim bona qualdtas, qua caret Filius; qui vero bona quadam qualitate caret, Deus non est. Si vero haec iustitia pretium postulans etiam in Filio est, necesse est alius Filio pretium quod debeatur solvat; quod si ita est, in Romanum cultum incidimus et ex operibus pendet iustificatio. Optime frater, multa dicta sunt et multa dicuntur et laudantur, ut haec que maxime est simplex res obscuretur, atque scio et apud vos et apud nos theologum maxime profundus haberi et vocari, qui maxima subtilitate possit oculos et aures legentium et audientium obturare, ne videant quam immensum sit intervallum inter S. Scripturam et Anselmi theologiam, quam sequuntur. Nulla vero subtilitas efficere poterit, ne certum sit in Ioh. 14: 9 frangi omnem theologiam, que aliam faciat Patris aliam Filii imaginem. Neque est locus, imo ne unus quidem, ubi doceat S. Scriptura, pretium quoddam Filium Petri solvisse. Dum in villa mea versabaris, ostendi tihi permultos locos, et ex N. Test. et ex LXX. sumptos, qui liberationem, salvationem, ἀπολύτρςσιν vocant et λύτρον illud, per quod fit salvatio (Luc. 2: 38, 21: 28; Rom. 8:23; 1 Cor. 1:30; Eph. 1:14; 4: 30; Ebr. 11: 35; Psa. 119:154; 69: 19, 111: 9, etc.) Atque prorsus eodem modo ea salvatio que est per Iesum ἀπολύτρωσις vocatur et illud λύτρον quod nos salvavit. Si rex sanguinem et vitam profundens exercitum suum salvat et praeclaram victoriam vincit, dicitur etiam nostra et vestra (credo) lingua maγνο pretio victoriam peperisse; quod si quis interrogat, cui illud pretium solvens victoriam exercitui pepererit sive emerit, nemo respondebit. Atque scio, si missam feceris illam, qua imbutus es, Anselmi theologiam et S. Scripturam perscruteris, to facile illud inventurum esse. Quamdiu vero illa theologia oculos obscurat, fieri non potest ut quis S. Scripturam intelligere possit. Ubicumque enim videt veritatem gratiae descriptam tamquam subiiciet ei illain pretii-solvendi-doc- trinam. Haec vera est Scripturae ratio: 1°, Deus amavit mundum; 2°, propterea quod Deus amavit mundum, Filium misfit, non ut sibi solveret quod deberet mundus, sed ut mundum salvaret; 3°, ut illud opus efficere posset Filius, Pater ei omnem potentiam in coelis et in terra tradidit; 4°, Filius Patri obediens venit, mortuus est, etc.; 5°, iam in dextra Patris sedens regnat, donee substrati sint hostes; 6°, postrema quum ei situs erit extremus hostis (i.e. mors), regnum Patri reddet et ipse se Patri subiiciet (1 Cor. 15).

De Propitiatione

FRATER. CARISSIME!-Filius certe Patrem ostendit, quod dicit Ioh. 14: 9; atque hoc, ut verissimum, ita gravissimum, quicunque Deo credit libentur accipiet; quicunque autem spreverit, illius gloriam, qui hue devenit ut efficeret propitiationem, sine dubio negabit, imo ipsam propitiationem subvertet. Personae enim dignitas divinam ad opus faciendum facultatem dedit, perfecto autem operi efficaciam intlnitam.
Verum ad propitiationem efficiendam opus est longe pluribus quam jure Domini divino aut peccatoris fide que illius opus et ipsum sine operibus suis sibi postulat. Ex quo fit ut si hisce Domini verbis, que hanc rem non attingunt, usus ratiocineris, necesse sit fallaris. Quid enim de propitiatione loquitur Scriptura? Nonne earn de crude Christi, de sanguine illius in remissionem peccatorum effuso, de hoc quod semel pro peccatis passus sit iustus pro iniustis ut nos ad Deum perduceret pendere dicit? Que quidem plenius confirmant haec e Novo Testamento petita, Rom. 3:25; 4: 25, 5: 9, 10; 1 Cor. 15:3; 2 Cor. 5:21; Gal. 1:4; 3: 16; Eph. 1:7,14; 4: 30, 5: 2; Col. 1, 14, 20; 1 Tim. 1:15; Titus 2:14; Ebr. 1: 3, 2: 9, 14; 12: 12, 14, 15, 24-28; 10: 5-10, 12-19, 12: 24, 13: 12, 20; 1 Peter 1:2,18-21; 2: 24; 3:18; 1 Ioh. 1: 7; 2: 2, 4: 10; Apoc. 1: 5, 5: 9; 7: 14; alia. Num debemus ilia adiicere que in Evangeliis praemissa erant qualia Matt. 20:28;26. 28; Ioh. 1: 29; multa alia? Tamen idoneum fuerit nonnulla e Vetere Testamento, que typorum ordinem haud dubie tenent, paucis attingere. Primum ergo, sanguis agni nocte paschae caesi extra, non intra, domum spargebatur, in superliminari et super postes, non ut Israel verum ut Deus aspiceret; quod ipse ita dicit, " Et videbo sanguinem, et transibo vos." In sacrificiis etiam sanguis in cornibus Dei arae effusus ipsi Deo, nunquam autem homini offerebatur. In non-nulls etiam homines, scilicet leprosi, sacerdotes, alii, sanguine spargebantur ut mundarentur, ut coram Deo praecipue mundi essent. In summis autem omnium, propitiationis die, templo inferebatur et super propitiatorio et coram ponebatur. Hoc autem quid vult nisi illud vel plenius demonstrare sanguinem pro hominibus coram Deo esse, non tantum amoris Dei erga homines documentum? Quibus ita utitur Novum Testamentum ut affirmet Christum per proprium sanguinem introiisse. Nam illud quidem, devenisse eurn et mortuum esse prae amore erga homines non minus verum, diversum autem esse videtur. Atque he quidem, aperto loquente Scriptura, nulla de amore Dei amplius quam Christi dubitatio esse potest. Misit Pater Filium, porro sic dilexit mundum Deus ut Filium swum unigenitum daret. Pariter autem constat Filium exaltari oportuisse, oportebat autem non tantum ob malum hominum, verum ob Dei verba, iustitiam, sanctam naturam, maiestatem, "que vindicari debebant ut hominibus iure ignosceretur. Que omnia, imo longe plus, efficit crux Christi. Propter peccata ille a Deo derelictus est, Psal. 22.; neque hic de Iudaeis aut Gentilibus, de Herode aut Pontio Pilato, nisi ut de improbis persecutoribus, agebatur. Etiam Deus ad crucem adfuit, qui Christum pro nobis peccatum effecerit, ut in eo nos fieremus iustitia Dei. Prius ille pro iustitia, sanctitate, gratia passus erat, pro peccatis turn passus est. Haec est propitiatio que sola credentis peccata expiare potest, neque huius exspectatio nova exstitit, quamquam novum erat factum. Nam, quod dicit princeps prophetarum;" Vulneratus est propter iniquitates nostras, attritus est propter scelera nostra: disciplina pacis nostrae super eum, et livore ejus sanati sumus." " Posuit Dominus in eo iniquitatem omnium nostrum." " Propter scelus populi mei percussi eum." " Et Dominus voluit conterere eum in infirmitate; si posuerit pro peccato animam suam, videbit semen longaevum," etc. " Iniquitates eorum ipse portabit." " Ipse peccata multorum tulit."
Consentiunt Lex, Psalmi, Prophetae; pariter Vetus Novum-que Testamentum a Deo et coram Deo propter peccata nostra passurn fuisse. Christum affirmant. Nuntiavit Dominus, apostoli (Paulus imprimis) iterant, nec minima carus ille discipulus qui maxima laudat Dei amorem, auctum revera hoc cognito, quippe wires et profunditatem suam turn demum ostendentem quum poculum hoc a Patre acceptum bibisse Christum intellexeris. Non totam efficiunt veritatem Dei amor, odia hominum, Satanae potentia, imo haec omnia profunditate superat illud, Christum pro peccatis hostiam se obtulisse Deo. Sane amorem Dei infinite imminuerit is qui Christum peccatorum nostrorum iudicium a Deo factum passum fuisse non viderit. Is enim de hominum peccatis negligentiam, contemptum Dei sanctitatis, maiestatis, monitorum qualia leguntur Deut. 27: 26, Rom. 2:9, Ebr. 10: 31, esse eurn effecerit. Contra demonstrant laudata fidei Dei vindicandae necessariam fuisse expiationem, si nocentes etiamsi crederent, salvos facere vellet. Iudicium passus est Christus ut ad peccatorem minaret gratia. Ergo iustitiam non minus quam gratiam nunc monstrat Deus.
Qui ergo contendunt falsam esse omnem theologiam que aliam faciat Patris imaginem aliam Filii, negabuntne Deum contrivisse Christum, hunt a Deo derelictum mortuum fuisse crimes nostrum expiantem coram Deo qui suscitavit eum a mortuis? Que si faciunt aliud haud dubie verum pervertunt, ut aliud aeque verum at gravissimum negent. Sane ex fide non ex operibus iustificatur homo: verum perfecitne Christus illud opus cui sacrificia propitiationis die peracta velut typi praemittebantur? Vaticinatur Isaia, cap. 53., narrant Matt. et Marc. Domini passionem, ut ipse loquitur, Deo derelinquente, quod inter poenas nostrorum peccatorum vel miserrimum erat. Num Dei vindictae, passionis Christi, eadem est imago? Mihi quidem inter haec summum fuisse discrimen videtur, et tamen pacis consilium ambobus adfuit. Que ergo obiecta sent, e falsa pendent interpretatione eorum que
leguntur Ioh. 14: 9, haec enim de Christi persona, non de opere eius, revera dicta sunt. Qui haec de cruce dicta accipiunt, ita ut Dominum pro peccatis nostris a Deo punitum fuisse negent, 2 propitiationis doctrinam que in Scriptura continetur, eiusque in Christo fundamenta interpretande summovent. Quid enim, nisi hoc, efficere vult controversia?
Porro illud postulant, iustitiam Dei eandem esse debere atque Christi iustitiam, qui autem affirmet Patri esse bonam qualitatem qua careat Filius, eum revera negare hunt esse Deum ant Dei similem. In quo vehementer errant; est enim iustitia, ut alibi, ita his, mores idonei relationi in qua stat quisque. Patet ergo, quomodo inter homines alia est servi alia' domini iustitia, parique modo alia filii alia parentis, uxoris alia quam que mariti, denique alia civis alia regis, ita esse iustitiam in illo "qui quum in forma Dei esset, non rapinam arbitratus est esse, se aequalem Deo: sed semetipsum exinanivit, formam servi accipiens, in similitudinem hominum factus et habitu inventus ut homo humiliavit semetipsum, factus obediens usque ad mortem, mortem autem crucis. Propter quod et Deus exaltavit ilium ergo ut non caret qualitatibus illis quas habet Pater, ita illas habet, qua homo est, quas non habet Pater, neque habere posset, quippe qui carnem nunquam sumpserit. Eius enim qui dirigit sive imperat iustitia alia est, alia eius qui paret. " Propterea me diligit Pater; quia ego pono animam meam, ut iterum sum am eam." Factum quidem ipsius, ex obedientia tamen Patris sui erat Ioh. 10: 17, 18. Personae Christi mysterium simile aliud in morte sequitur, si ergo alterum tantum in ea, sive id quod ad Deum sive id quod ad hominem pertinebat respicias, personam divides, opus evacuabis, veritatem amittes. " Nemo novit Filium, nisi Pater." Verbo quidem illius debemus parere, universo autem, non parti tantum. Filius est Iesus, qui non modo similis est Dei, nam vere Deus est, et plenel. Deus, aeque ac Pater et Spiritus Sanctus. Porro in ipso complacuit omnem plenitudinem inhabitare," et inhabitat corporaliter; ut tamen divinitatis personae non modo unam naturam, verum etiam unam mentem, consilium, voluntatem habent, ita in his manifestandis diverse agunt, quod apparet, e.g., Matt. 3:16,17, nam tres sunt non minus quam unum. Et quidem Christus quum esset Filius Dei, didicit ex its que passus est obedientiam. Itaque fieri non potuit quip in ipso qualitates inessent perfectae in suo genere, que a Patre aberant, atque etiam ab ipso, donee servi locum sumeret, factus homo in terris. Etiam planius hoc in cruce videtur, illic enim novum incepit opus suo in genere unicum, quod sequebantur gratia et gloria infinita, aeterna; et in passione per quam factum est. Que omnia Christi divinitatem nihilo plus imminuere volunt quam negare eum Patrem manifestare aut Deum ostendere. Qui autem dubitant Patrem et Filium, dum hit in terra versatur, diverse egisse ac praecipue apud crucem, 2 non in Romanum quidem cultum verum in Sabellianorum doctrinam, que nequitia longe superat Romanam, incidunt, et longe plus pugnant cum sancta Scriptura quam cum Anselmi theologia, quam ipsam parvi equidem pendo.
Neque tamen cum theologis debemus emptionem cum redemptione confundere. Totus mundus, omnes mortales, etiam mali sanguine Christi empti sunt; nulli vero nisi, credentes habent redemptionem (ἀπολύρωσιν) per sanguinem ejus, remissionem peccatorum, quamvis ὑπἐρ πάντων sit τὸ ἀντίλυτρον. Per emptionem quidem omnes eius possessio sive servi efficiuntur; per redemptionem vero potestate Satanae liberamur, Christi liberti, ut Deo liberi pareamus. Ina autem regis morientis inter vincendum pro exercitu similitudo, illudne serio agitur ut neget sanguinem Christi effusum pro peccatis sacrificium non pro hominibus tantum sed Deo protium solutum esse? Nihil est illud quidem affirmare Deum diligere mundum atque ita diligere ut Filium swum miserit qui credentibus vitarn aeternam det, hoc enim diversum est ab illo, aeque vero, quod " ipso ad destitutionem peccati per hostiam suam apparuit." Hostia vero secundum Scripturam Deo sacrificatur, nunquam autem creaturae, quod est idolorum servitus, ut est contra re motio sacrificii infidelitas. Ac certissime redemptionis opus, remissio peccatorum, per sanguinem fit, per passionem que fuit propitiationis causa in truce, non per omnem potestatem in coelo et in terra datam a Deo homini quern a mortuis suscitavit. Neque oblivisci debemus, cum Christo subiecta fuerint omnia et ills tradiderit regnum, fieri hoc non ut Pater, verum ut Deus, scilicet Pater, Filius, Spiritus sanctus, sit omnia in omnibus.
" FOR THE Defense OF THE GOSPEL."
Eἰς ἀπολογἴαν τοῦ εὐαγγελίου χεῖμαι—PHIL. 1: 17.
ARE the foundations destroyed? Is there any longer a Christ or Christianity, the Word or the Church of God? Such is the question raised by the writings of the present-day theological speculators and modern critics. It becomes now indeed (sad to say it!) an urgent question whether there be a Bible as a revelation from God, in words which God inspired, and whether there be such a thing as Christianity or the Church of God on earth. Certainly no creed or confession formulates the Christianity of the Scriptures, and no Church in Christendom now holds to the unity of the Spirit, or acknowledges His personal presence on earth. If otherwise, which is it?
The authority of the Bible having been very specially assailed in our land as well as in every country in the world, most of its leading doctrines having been either ignored, impugned, or rejected, it behooves individual Christians, who still value the Holy Scriptures as the Word of God, and who realize the awful crisis of un-faith into which the whole professing Church is drifting, to look to the Lord to maintain the standard of His own glory, and give them grace to " witness a good confession " of the truth by re-asserting the original testimony of God as given by the Holy Ghost. When the Church corporate has manifestly ceased to be " the pillar and ground of the truth," it devolves on every soul who values the Holy Scriptures and has faith in the living God, to cling to the person of the Christ of God, who reveals Himself to the faithful as the Holy and the True, " He that openeth, and no man shutteth," holding fast His Word, and not denying His name (Rev. 3:7,8).
With all humility and self-judgment, yet with firmness and faith confiding in the grace of God, as one who loves the truth and confesses the name of Christ, the writer ventures to recall the faithful and loyal disciples of Christ to faith in the Holy Scriptures as the inspired revelation of God, to union with the glorified Christ by the Holy Ghost, to the fact of the Holy Spirit's presence on earth, and to the privileges and responsibilities of membership of the body of Christ, by the publication of THE BIBLE WITNESS AND REVIEW, which has these very specially for its objects. It will seek to uphold the inspiration and authority of the written Word of God, and, by the direct presentation of the revelation of God contained in the Holy Scriptures, to expose and refute, as far as allowed of God, the deadly errors which now pervade the whole of Christendom alike Romish and Protestant.
The questions now raised everywhere are vital and fundamental; and they are just such as we care to handle, for Scripture principles are catholic, not sectarian, and our periodical exists for no party, but for the edification of the saints of God in every place, and the maintenance of divine truth as revealed. All who are dear to Christ are dear to us; and one would hope that a crisis like the present may draw the children of God together in closer fellowship, that they may " stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel."
We rejoice that a few have given " together " their renewed testimony to Christ and Christianity and the inspiration of the Holy Scriptures, and we look to the Lord to own the truth presented, and increase the number of those who love it and are able to use it in testimony to Him. Blind is the man who does not see a more intense and widespread power of Satan put forth of late against the Scriptures and the testimony of God, and more especially through pseudo-criticism and theological speculation; and this necessitates the presentation of such papers as the Christian reader will find, it is believed, in the opening volume of our testimony, giving as they do the Scripture doctrine, and thus confronting and refuting error with truth. The front is changed. The conflict is for the very existence of a revelation from God and of Christianity; and the specific aim must be to keep this in the forefront as that in which the real dignity and moral elevation of man consist. The rights of the Creator and the creature to have to do with each other are the real question with the enemy. We shall thus "contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints," bringing men face to face with the living God speaking in the Holy Scriptures. The written Word of God is our supreme authority and our only standard. "Let God be true, but every man a liar."
Those who fight the Lord's battles must make up their minds to be scorned and little accounted of on earth; but it is enough that the Lord Jesus approves of any faithful testimony rendered to His name. " Thou hast kept My word, and hast not denied My name," is no little praise in a day when the word of testimony for Christ is being sacrificed to a temporizing and worldly expediency, and when Christ's name seems no longer to have commanding authority even amongst His own servants. There never was a time when there was more general knowledge about Him in the professing church, with more indifference to Himself,—a saying of " Lord, Lord," and yet not doing the things which He so plainly enjoins. " I will spue thee out of My mouth," is the end of this heartless and unconscionable indifferentism (Rev. 3:14-21).
It is very sad that the majority of the theological professors of the day are more or less touched with rationalism, or not inclined to denounce it as incipient infidelity. A great number especially of the younger ministers are reading approvingly the popular literature of the day-which is at the best but theistic, not Christian-and making their sermons on the literary models of Anglican and American preachers of high intellect but more than questionable soundness, the pabulum for which is mainly
drawn from German divines and commentators, not one of whose writings is fully orthodox. Thus, straining to become intellectual, they vitiate the truth instead of letting it judge themselves and their hearers. There is no longer, with such, a distinct preaching of Christ Himself as our living Head, and of His cross, the Spirit's cure for worldliness in Christianity (1 Cor. 1, 2, 3, 4.; Gal. 6:12-14). There is thus a letting down of the testimony of our Lord, an avoidance of the offense of the cross, and a mixing up of church and world in every conceivable way; as if it had been the church's mission to attach the world to itself in all its worldliness, denying all real difference between them, and as if no such word as that uttered by our. Lord, " Ye cannot serve God and mammon," had ever been spoken. The preaching being lowered, the practice is correspondingly low, and professing Christians try to think it right to countenance all sorts of semi-worldly shows and demonstrations, and the scandal occasioned is terrible! But these are merely the fruits of unfaithfulness to Christ. The root is a more serious thing, and will be found to exist in the colorless, non-christian, yea antichristian, teaching to which we have already alluded. Would that it were uncharitable to suppose that there are professors training the future ministers of all the modern churches, who seem themselves never to have lain before a just and holy God in the judgment of their sins by the death of Christ, known by faith and in the living grace of the Holy Ghost. But surely, judged by their writings, some have merely an intellectual knowledge of the Scriptures, just as they would, by their general ability, have become proficients in any other science; and hence they teach their subjects as scientists in theology, not as lost sinners saved by the absolute grace of God. Their writings show that although they may be acquainted with critical and theological works, they are in darkness regarding the drift of Divine revelation, and cannot tell out, as men who have an unction from the Holy One,
the testimony of the Holy Ghost in the holy Scriptures to the glory of God's Son. There is not such a thing as the truth in their teaching, for they do not know it. They cannot help gleaning many true things from their multifarious reading; but, as it was to the theologians of His day that our Lord said, "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free;" and again, " Because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not;" so these scientific theologians know a variety of truths, but not the truth; and hence, not having it, they cannot communicate it.. It is not found apart from living contact with the Person of Christ, and the living grace of the Holy Ghost, and the true sayings of God in the holy Scriptures. The truth, being the God-thought in Christ, could these professors tell you scripturally the truth of the nature, person, life, death, intercession, priesthood, headship, kingship, church or kingdom,-present life in heaven, future glory there or reign on earth, of the Christ of God? If not, would it not demonstrate that the truth is not in them? Wherefore Christ, who is " the Truth," being unknown-His person and sacrifice, grace and glory, being misapprehended-they cannot do otherwise than make a sorry business of their professional work, and pour into the youths they misteach principles and doctrines entirely alien from the plan of God for the glory of Christ revealed in the holy Scriptures, as indeed is the whole system of their theology from its foundation to its copestone. And a human system of theology being taught in the colleges, it is in due time transferred to the churches; and if one were going into the churches or chapels over the land, would he not find the homogeneity of the erroneous teaching persistently adhered to? The country is full of this theology: but where is Christ? He is all but unknown as the Holy Ghost has revealed Him in the word of God. And what deliverance can there be since Christ, who delivers us from this present evil world, is unknown? This modern theology and preaching never contemplate separation to God in the knowledge and enjoyment of the Father's love as new creatures in Christ; but rather a patronizing of modern literature and worldly amusements, and an annexing of the ambitious pursuits of time and sense, veneering them with religion. Hence men practical