Images de page
PDF
ePub

them, every one was accounted accursed who died on a tree. This serves to explain the difficult passage in Rom. ix. 2, where the apostle wishes himself accursed after the manner of Christ; i. e. crucified, if happily he might by such a death save his countrymen. The preposition here made use of is used in the same sense, 2 Tim. i. 3. where it obviously signifies after the manner of.

ACOEMETÆ, or ACOMETI, an order of monks at Constantinople in the fifth century, whom the writers of that and the following ages called Axaura; that is, Watchers, because they per formed divine service day and night without intermission. They divided themselves into three classes, who alternately succeeded one another, so that they kept up a perpetual course of worship. This practice they founded upon that passage-" pray without ceasing,"

[ocr errors]

gaol-delivery, appointed as often as a competent number of prisoners in the Inquisition are convicted of heresy, either by their own voluntary or extorted confession, or on the evidence of certain witnesses. The process is this:-In the morning they are brought into a great hall, where they have certain habits put on, which they are to wear in the procession, and by which they know their doom. The procession is led up

ACEPHALI, such bishops as were exempt from the discipline and jurisdic-by Dominican friars, after which come tion of their ordinary bishop or patri- the penitents, being all in black coats arch. It was also the denomination of without sleeves, and barefooted, with a certain sects; 1. of those who, in the af- wax candle in their hands. These are fair of the council of Ephesus, refused followed by the penitents who have narto follow either St. Cyril or John of An- || rowly escaped being burnt, who over tioch; 2. of certain heretics in the fifth their black coats have flames painted, century, who, at first, followed Peter with their points turned downwards. Mongus, but afterwards abandoned him, Next come the negative and relapsed, upon his subscribing to the council of who are to be burnt, having flames on Chalcedon, they themselves adhering to their habits pointing upwards. After the Eutychian heresy; and, 3. of the fol- these come such as profess doctrines lowers of Severus of Antioch, and of all, contrary to the faith of Rome, who, in general, who held out against the besides flames pointing upwards, have council of Chalcedon. their picture painted on their breasts, with dogs, serpents, and devils, all openmouthed, about it. Each prisoner is attended with a familiar of the Inquisition; and those to be burnt have also a Jesuit on each hand. who are continually preaching to them to abjure. After the prisoners, comes a troop of familiars on horseback; and after them the Inquisitors, and other officers of the court, on mules: last of all, the Inquisitor-general on a white horse, led by two men with black hats and green hats-bands. A scaffold is erected big enough for two or ACOLYTHI, or ACOLUTHI, young three thousand people; at one end of people who, in the primitive times, which are the prisoners, at the other the aspired to the ministry, and for that Inquisitors. After a sermon made up of purpose continually attended the bishop. encomiums of the Inquisition, and inIn the Romish church, Acolythi were of vectives against heretics, a priest aslonger continuance; but their functionscends a desk near the scaffold, and, havwere different from those of their first institution. Their business was to light the tapers, carry the candlesticks and the incense pot, and prepare the wine and water. At Rome there were three kinds; 1. those who waited on the pope; 2. those who served in the churches. 3. and others, who, together with the deacons, officiated in other parts of the city.

1 Thess. v. 17.

ACT OF FAITH (Auto da Fe,) in the Romish church, is a solemn day held by the Inquisition for the punishment of heretics, and the absolution of the innocent accused. They usually contrive the Auto to fall on some great festival, that the execution may pass with the more awe; and it is always on a Sunday. The Auto da Fe may be called the last act of the Inquisitorial tragedy: it is a kind of

ing taken the abjuration of the penitents, recites the final sentence of those who are to be put to death, and delivers them to the secular arm, earnestly beseeching at the same time the secular power not to touch their blood, or put their lives in danger!!! The prisoners, being thus in the hands of the civil magistrate, are presently loaded with chains, and carried first to the secular gaol, and from thence, in an hour or two, brought before the civil judge; who, after a king in what religion they intend to die, pronounces sentence on such as declare they die in the communion of the church of Rome, that they shall be first strangled, and then burnt to ashes; or such as die in any other faith, that they be burnt alive. Both are immediately carried to the Ribera, the place

B

of execution, where there are as many stakes set up as there are prisoners to be burnt, with a quantity of dry furze about them. The stakes of the professed, that is, such as persist in the heresy, are about four yards high, having a small board towards the top for the prisoner to be seated on. The negative and relapsed being first strangled and burnt, the professed mount their stakes by a ladder, and the Jesuits, after several repeated exhortations to be reconciled to the church, part with them; telling them that they leave them to the devil, who is standing at their elbow, to receive their souls, and carry them with him to the flames of hell. On this a great shout is raised and the cry is, "Let the dogs' beards be made!" which is done by thursting flaming furzes fastened to long poles against their faces, till their faces are burnt to a coal, which is accompanied with the loudest acclamations of joy. At last, fire is set to the furze at the bottom of the stake. over which the professed are chained so high, that the top of the flame seldom reaches higher than the seat they sit on; so that they rather seem roasted than burnt. There cannot be a more lamentable spectacle: the sufferers continually cry out, while they are able, "Pity, for the love of God!" Yet it is beheld, by all sexes and ages, with transports of joy and satisfaction-O merciful God! is this the benign, humane religion thou hast given to men? Surely not. If such were the genius of Christianity, then it would be no honour to be a Christian. Let us, however, rejoice that the time is coming when the demon of Persecution shall be banished out of this our world and the true spirit of benevolence and candour pervade the universe; when none shall hurt or destroy, but the earth be filled with the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea! See INQUISITION.

ACTION FOR THE PULPIT.— See DECLAMATION.

ACTS OF THE APOSTLES, one of the sacred books of the New Testament containing the history of the infant church during the space of twenty-nine or thirty years from the ascension of our Lord to the year of Christ 63. It was written by Luke, and addressed to Theophilus, the person to whom the evangelist had before dedicated his gospel. The style of this work, which was originally composed in Greek, is much purer than that of the other canonical writers. For the contents of this book we refer the reader to the book itself.

There have been several acts of the

[ocr errors]

apostles, such as the acts of Abdias, of Peter, of Paul, St. John the Evangelist, St. Andrew, St. Thomas, St. Philip, and St. Matthias; but they have been all proved to be spurious.

ACTS OF PILATE, a relation sent by Pilate to the Emperor Tiberius, concerning Jesus Christ, his death, resurrection, ascension, and the crimes of which he was convicted before him It was a custom among the Romans, that the pro-consuls and governors of provinces should draw up acts or memoirs of what happened in the course of their government, and send them to the emperor and senate. The genuine acts of Pilate were sent by him to Tiberius, who reported them to the senate, but they were rejected by that assembly, because not immediately addressed to them; as is testified by Tertullian, in his Apol. cap. 5, and 20, 21. The heretics forged acts in imitation of them; but both the genuine and the spurious are now lost.

ADAMITES, a sect that sprang up in the second century. Epiphanius tells us, that they were called Adamites, from their pretending to be re-established in the state of innocence, such as Adam was at the moment of his creation, whence they ought to imitate him in going naked. They detested marriage; maintaining that the conjugal union would never have taken place upon earth, had sin been unknown. This obscure and ridiculous sect did not last long. It was, however, revived with additional absurdities in the twelfth century. About the beginning of the fifteenth century, these errors spread in Germany and Bohemia: it found also some partizans in Poland, Holland, and England They assembled in the night; and it is said. one of the fundamental maxims of their society was contained in the following verse:

Jura, perjura, secretum prodere noli. Swear, forswear, and reveal not the secret. ADESSEN ARIANS, a branch of the Sacramentarians; so called from the Latin Adesse, to be present because they believed the presence of Christ's body in the eucharist, though in a manner different from the Romanists.

ADIAPHORISTS, a name given in the sixteenth century to the moderate Lutherans who adhered to the sentiments of Melancthon; and afterwards to those who subscribed the interim of Charles V. [See INTERIM.] The word is of Greek origin (adogos.) and signifies indifference or lukewarmness

ADMIRATION is that passion of the mind which is excited by the dis

covery of any great excellence in an object. It has by some writers been used as synonymous with surprise and wonder; but it is evident they are not the same. Surprise refers to something unexpected; wonder, to something great or strange; but admiration includes the idea of high esteem or respect. Thus, we say we admire a man's excellencies but we do not say that we are surprised at them. We wonder at an extraordinary object or event, but we do not always admire it.

ADMÓNITION denotes a hint or advice given to another, whereby we reprove him for his fault, or remind him of his duty. Admonition was a part of the discipline much used in the ancient church: it was the first act or step towards the punishment or expulsion of delinquents. In case of private offences, it was performed according to the evangelical rule, privately; in case of public offence, openly before the church. If either of these sufficed for the recovery of the fallen person, all farther proceedings, in a way of censure, ceased; if they did not, recourse was had to excommunication.-Tit. iii. 10. 1 Thess. v. 14. Eph. vi. 4.

ADONAI, one of the names of the Supreme Being in the Scriptures. The proper meaning of the word is " my Lords," in the plural number; as Adoni is my Lord, in the singular. The Jews, who either out of respect or superstition do not pronounce the name of Jehovah, read Adonai in the room of it, as often as they meet with Jehovah in the Hebrew text. But the ancient Jews were not so scrupulous; nor is there any law which forbids them to pronounce the name of God.

ADONISTS, a party among divines and critics, who maintain that the Hebrew points ordinarily annexed to the consonants of the word Jehovah are not the natural points belonging to that word, nor express the true pronunciation of it; but are the vowel points belonging to the words Adonai and Elohim, applied to the consonants of the ineffable name Jehovah, to warn the readers, that instead of the word Jehovah, which the Jews were forbid to pronounce, and the true pronunciation of which had long been unknown to them. they are always to read Adonai. They are opposed to Jehovists, of whom the principal are Drusius, Capellus, Buxtorf, Álting, and Reland.

ADOPTIANISTS, the followers of Felix of Urgil and Epiland of Toledo who, towards the end of the eighth century, advanced the notion that Jesus

[ocr errors]

Christ in his human nature is the Son of
God, not by nature, but by adoption.

ADOPTION, an act whereby any person receives another into his family, owns him for his son, and appoints him his heir. 2. Spiritual adoption is an act of God's free grace, whereby we are received into the number, and have a right to all the privileges of the sons of God.-3. Glorious, is that in which the || saints, being raised from the dead are at the last day solemnly owned to be the children of God and enter into the full possession of that inheritance provided for them, Rom. viii. 19. 23. Adoption is a word taken from the civil law, and was much in use among the Romans in the apostles' time; when it was a custom for persons who had no children of their own, and were possessed of an estate, to prevent its being divided, or descending to strangers, to make choice of such who were agreeable to them, and beloved by them, whom they took into this political relation of children; obliging them to take their name upon them, and to pay respect to them as though they were their natural parents, and engaging to deal with them as though they had been so; and accordingly to give them a right to their estates, as an inheritance. This new relation, founded in a mutual consent, is a bond of affection; and the privilege arising from thence is, that he who is in this sense a father, takes care of and provides for the person whom he adopts, as though he were his son by nature; and therefore civilians call it an act of legitimation, imitating nature, or supplying the place of it.

It is easy, then, to conceive the propriety of the term as used by the apostle in reference to this act, though it must be confessed there is some difference between civil and spiritual adoption. Civil adoption was allowed of and provided for the relief and comfort of those who had no children; but in spiritual adoption this reason does not appear. The Almighty was under no obligation to do this; for he had innumerable spirits whom he had created, besides his own Son, who had all the perfections of the divine nature, who was the object of his delight, and who is styled the heir of all things, Heb. i. 3. When men adopt, it is on account of some excellency in the persons who are adopted; thus Pharaoh's daughter adopted Moses because he was exceed|| ing fair, Acts vii. 20, 21; and Mordecai adopted Esther because she was his uncle's daughter, and exceeding fair, Est. ii, 7: but man has nothing in him

that merits this divine act, Ezek. xvi. 5. In civil adoption, though the name of a son be given, the nature of a son may not; this relation may not necessarily be attended with any change of disposition or temper. But in spiritual adoption we are made partakers of the divine nature, and a temper or disposition given us becoming the relationship we bear, Jer. iii. 19.

46

apostle, "whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come, all are yours, 1 Cor. iii. 22.-3. Divine protection. "In the fear of the Lord is strong confidence, and his children shall have a place of refuge," Prov. xiv. 26. As the master of a family is engaged to defend and secure all under his roof, and committed to his care, so Jesus Christ is engaged to protect and defend his people. "They shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, and in sure dwell

Much has been said as to the time of adoption. Some place it before regeneration, because it is supposed that we must be in the family before we can beings and quiet resting places," Isa xxxii. partakers of the blessings of it. But it 18. Heb. i. 14.-4. Unspeakable felicity. is difficult to conceive of one before the They enjoy the most intimate commuother; for although adoption may seem nion with the Father, and with his Son to precede regeneration in order of na- Jesus Christ. They have access to his ture, yet not of time; they may be dis throne at all times, and under all cirtinguished, but cannot be separated. cumstances. They see divine wisdom "As many as received him, to them regulating every affair, and rendering gave he power to become the sons of every thing subservient to their good. God, even to them that believe on his Heb. xii. 6-11. The laws, the liberties, name," John i. 12. There is no adop- the privileges, the relations, the protion, says the great Charnock without visions, and the security of this family regeneration. Adoption," says the are all sources of happiness; but espesame author. "is not a mere relation; cially the presence, the approbation, the privilege and the image of the sons and the goodness of God, as the goverof God go together. A state of adoption nor thereof, afford joy unspeakable and is never without a separation from de- full of glory, 1 Pet. i. 8. Prov. iii. 17. filement, 2 Cor. vi. 17, 18. The new Heb. iv. 16.-5. Eternal glory. In name in adoption is never given till the some cases, civil adoption might be made new creature be formed. As many as null and void, as among the Romans, are led by the Spirit of God, they are when against the right of the pontifex, the sons of God,' Rom. viii 14. Yet these and without the decree of the college; are to be distinguished. Regeneration, || but spiritual adoption, as it is divine as as a physical act, gives us a likeness to to its origin, so it is perpetual as to its God in our nature; adoption, as a legal duration. "The Son abideth in the act, gives us a right to an inheritance. hou-e for ever," John viii. 35. "The inRegeneration makes us formally his heritance of the saints is incorruptible, sons, by conveying a principle. 1 Pet. i. undefiled, and never fadeth away," 1 23; adoption makes us relatively his Pet. i. 4. "Now are we the sons of sons, by conveying a power, John i. 12. God, and it doth not yet appear what By the one we are instated in the di- we shall be: but we know that when he vine affection; by the other we are par- shall appear, we shall be like him, for takers of the divine nature." we shall see him as he is," 1 John iii. 2. In the present state we are as children at school; but in heaven we shall be as children at home, where we shall always behold the face of our heavenly Father, for ever celebrating his praises, admiring his perfections, and enjoying his presence. So shall we be ever with the Lord." 1 Thess. iv. 17

The privileges of adoption are every way great and extensive. 1. It implies great honour. They have God's name put upon them, and are described as his people, called by his name," 2 Chron. vii. 24. Eph iii. 15. They are no longer slaves to sin and the world; but, emancipated from its dreadful bondage, are raised to dignity and honour, Gal. iv. 7: 1 John iii. 1, 2.-2. Inexhaus tible provision and riches. They inherent all things, Rev. xxi. 7. All the blessings of a temporal kind that are for their good shall be given them. Psalm lxxxiv. 11. All the blessings of grace are treasured up in Jesus Christ for them, Eph. i. 3. All the blessings of glory shall be enjoyed by them, Col. i. 27. "All things are yours," says the

The evidences of adoption are, 1. Renunciation of all former dependencies. When a child is adopted, he relinquishes the object of his past confidence, and submits himself to the will and pleaSure of the adopter; so they who are brought into the family of God, will evidence it by giving up every other object so far as it interferes with the will and glory of their heavenly Father. "Ephraim shall say, What have I to

[ocr errors]

do any more with idols?" Hos. xiv. 8. || "Other lords have had dominion over us; but by thee only will we make mention of thy name." Is. xxvi. 13. Matt. xiii. 45, 46 Phil. iii. S.—2. Affec- || tion. This may not always apply to civil adoption, but it always does to spiritual. The children of God feel a regard for him above every other object. His own excellency, his unspeakable || goodness to them his promises of future blessings, are all grounds of he strongest love 66 Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that ADORATION, the act of rendering I desire besides thee." Psalm 1xxiii. 25. divine honours, including in it reverence, "Thou art my portion, saith my soul, esteem and love: this is called supreme, therefore will I hope in thee." Lam. iii. or absolute. The word is compounded, 24. Luke vii. 47. Ps. xviii. 1.-3. Access of ad,to," and os, oris." mouth," and to God with a holy boldness. They who || literally signifies to apply the hand to are children by adoption are supposed the mouth, "to kiss the hand;" this to have the same liberty of access as being in the eastern countries, one of those who are children by nature; so the great marks of respect and submisthose who are partakers of the blessings sion. See Job xxxi. 26, 27. The attiof spiritual adoption will prove it by a tude of adoration, however, we find has reverential, yet familiar address to the not been confined to this mode; standFather of spirits: they will confess their ing, kneeling, uncovering the head, unworthiness, acknowledge their de- prostration, bowing, lifting up the eyes pendence, and implore the mercy and to heaven, or sometimes fixing them favour of God. "Because ye are sons, upon the earth with the body bending God hath sent forth the Spirit of his forward; sitting with the under parts of Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Fa- || the thighs resting on the heels, have all ther." Gal. iv. 6. Through Jesus been used, as expressive of veneration Christ we have access by one Spirit and esteem. Whatever be the form, unto the Father." Eph. ii. 18. Having however, it must be remembered that such a privilege, they "come boldly to adoration, as an act of worship, is due to the throne of grace, that they may obtain God alone, Matt. iv. 10. Acts x. 25, 26. mercy and find grace to help in time of|| Rev. xix. 10. There is, 2. what may be need." Heb.iv. 16.-4. Obedience. Those called adoration human, or paying howho are adopted into a family must mage or respect to persons of great rank obey the laws of that family; so be- and dignity. This has been performed lievers prove themselves adopted by by bowing, bending the knee, falling on their obedience to the word and ordi- the face. The practice of ado a ion nances of God. “Ye are my friends, may be said to be still subsisting in if ye do whatsoever I command you.' England, in the ceremony of kissing the John. xv. 14. Whoso keepeth his king's or queen's hand, and in serving word, in him verily is the love of God them at table, both being performed perfected: hereby know we that we are kneeling on one knee. There is also, in him. He that saith he abide h in 3. adoration relative, which consists in him, ought himself also to walk even as worship paid to an object as belonging he walked." 1 John ii. 4, 5.-5. Patient to or representative of another. In this yet joyfulexpectation of the inheritance. sense the Romanists profess to adore the In civil adoption, indeed, an inheritance cross not simply or immediately. but in is not always certain; but in spiritual respect of Jesus Christ, whom they supadoption it is. "fo them who, by pa- pose to be on it. This is generally, tient continuance in well doing, seek for however, considered by protestants, as glory, and honour, and immortality, coming little short of idolatry. See eternal life." Rom. ii. 7. "We look IDOLATRY. not at the thing which are seen, but at the things which are not seen for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal. 2 Cor. iv 18. Rom. vi. 23. Heb. xi. 26, 27. From the consideration of the whole of this doctrine, we may learn that adoption is an act of free grace

through Jesus Christ. Eph. i. 5. Applied to believers by the Holy Spirit, Gal. iv. 6. Rom. viii. 15, 16. A blessing of the greatest importance, 1 John iii. 1, and lays us under an inviolable obligation of submission. Heb. xii. 9; imita||tion, Eph. v. 1; and dependence, Matt. vi. 32. See Rudgley's and Gill's Body of Div. art. Adoption; Charnock's Work's, vol. ii. p. 32-72; Flavel's Work's vol ii. p. 601; Brown's System of Nat. and Rev. Religion, p. 442; Witsi Econ. Fed. p. 165.

ADVERSARY, one who sets himself in opposition to another: one of the names of Satan. See SATAN.

ADVERSITY, a state which is opposite to our wishes, and the cause of sorrow It stands opposed to prosperi ty. See AFFLICTION

ADULTERY, an unlawful commerce

« PrécédentContinuer »