« PrécédentContinuer »
also with the Sadduces.” Chap. xvii.1, “ Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John.” Ephes, ii. 20; iii. 5, “The apostles and prophets.” Heb, ix. 19, “ The blood of calves and goats.” In all these cases, to omit many others, one article only is prefixed, which clearly shows that this is not a perpetual rule, because the subjects are only coupled together in the sentence. The reader may be referred besides, for other examples, to Ephes. v. 5; 2 Thess. i. 12; 1 Tim. v. 21.
· What answer do you make to the fifth testimony, taken from Titus ii. 13, “ Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of THE GREAT GOD AND OUR SAVIOUR JESUS CHRist?”
It is attempted to be shown on two grounds that the epithet “the great God" in this passage ought to be referred to Christ. First, because the rule already referred to, respecting the construction of two or more substantives, with only a single article prefixed, requires it to be so applied ;-and secondly, because it is the coming of the Son, and not of the FaTHER, that we are looking for. The former of these reasons has already been obviated, in the answer to the preceding question. To the latter it is replied, that Paul does not write (as in the English translation) “looking for theglorious appearing of the great God," but “looking for the appearing of the glory of the great God” (επιφανειαν της δοξης του μεγαλου θεου). Now that it may be truly said, that the glory of God will appear when Christ shall come to judgement, is evident from the declaration of our Lord, that “ he shall come in glory," that is, in the glory of God his Fa
ther. There is, however, no impropriety in saying that God the Father will come, or rather will appear, when the Son shall come to judge the world.
For will not Christ, in judging the world, sustain and represent the person of God the Father, as the sovereign from whom he will have derived his judicial office ?
What answer do you make to the sixth testimony, from Revelations iv. 8, “ Holy, holy, holy Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come ?"
This passage is referred to Christ, because it is assumed that no one is “ to come” but he ; who is to appear again to judge the quick and dead. But the word (egxquevos) which is here rendered “ to come,” may with equal propriety be rendered 10 BE. Thus John xvi. 13, our Lord says of the spirit which he promised to the apostles, that he would show them things to COME, or to be.” And Acts xviii. 21, we read of a feast that was to COME, or TO BE. In both these places the Greek word is epX Quevos-venturus—(to be hereafter). Besides, who does not see that since in the former clauses the words are “who was, and who is,” the third clause ought to be rendered “and who is TO BE;" in order that the whole passage may be understood of existence; and not the first two of existence, and the last of a future appearance? Nor is there an individual who does not perceive that the eternity of God is the subject which the writer had in his mind, and which comprehends all past, present, and future time. But what must serve still more clearly to expose this gross errói is the following passage in Rev. i. 4, 5, “Grace
be unto you, and peace, from him which is, which was, and which is to come (or to be), and from the seven spirits which are before the throne, and froin Jesus, Christ who is the faithful witness.”
Whence it appears that Jesus Christ is a being wholly distinct from him who is, and who was, and who is to be,or, agreeably to the Greek idiom,“who is to come.”
What reply do you make to the seventh testimony, deduced from Acts xx. 29, “Take heed unto yourselves, and to all the flock over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers-TO FEED THE CHURCH OF Gon, which he hath purchased with his own blood?"
In reference to this passage, I answer, that the word God, here inserted, may and indeed ought to be understood of God the Father: both because the article is prefixed to it, even though the word is put subjec, tively, which is never the case when it is applied to Christ; and because in this very address Christ is. throughout distinguished from God (ver. 21, 24). In the next place, the apostle calls the blood which Christ shed, God the Father's own blood, for this reason, that whatever any one possesses through the gift of another, and is as such lawfully his own, may nevertheless still be said to be the property of him from whom it was obtained. Whatever Christ was, through the gift or appointment of God, and he possessed nothing which he had not received from God, and which did not, of right, still belong to him. It may therefore be said that Christ's blood was God's. own blood, especially if we consider in what manner it was shed for us,---because it was shed as the blood
of the lamb of God, that is, of such a victim as God provided, as it were of himself, to take away the sins of the world. It may be added, that the blood of Christ may with propriety be called God's own blood, in as much as that Christ was God'sown Son, begotten of him by the Holy Spirit. Nor must it be omitted, that in the Syriac version the words of Christ, and not of God, occur in this place 16. In some Greek manuscripts also LORD AND GOD are inserted : the word God being added to Lord in order to intimate that Christ was in such a sense made Lord by the Father, that the title God might with propriety be ascribed to him ; that by this means the dignity of his church and the excellence of his blood might appear so much the more conspicuously. Agreeably to this interpretation besides, Thomas, if he addressed those words to Christ,was not satisfied with calling him Lord, but styled him also God, that he might acknowledge, not his ordinary, but his divine, authority over him.
What answer do you make to the eighth testimony,
16 It is thus that Jerome quotes this passage in his Commentary on Titus. A. Wissowatius.
That very ancient Greek MS. of Thecla, as Grotius observes, reads T8 Kupis, of the Lord. So also the Armenian version reads “the Church of the Lord,” as a bishop of Armenia informed Sandius, as Cingallus states in his Scriptura S. Trin. Revelatrix, p. 138.m B. WISSOWATIUS.
m (Griesbach has inserted Tou xuqsov,“ of the Lord,” in his text as the genuine reading,
,-a substitution which is demanded by the concurrent authority of the most ancient and best manuscripts which are extant of the New Testament. The common reading is supported by no manuscript or version
of great antiquity or value. See Griesbach and the Improved Version on the place. The MS. of Thecla referred to by Grotius is the celebrated Codex Alexandrinus in the British Museum. Transl.]
from 1 John iii. 164" Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us?”
In the first place, I must inform you that the word God is not found in any Greek copy, except the Complutensian; nor does it occur in the Syriac ver. sion. But if this word were found in every copy, would it therefore follow that the pronoun HE (EXEIVOS) must be referred to God? Certainly not; and this not only for the reason which I have already noticed, in answer to the third testimony,—that words of this class do not always refer to the proximate antecedent, or the nearest person,--but also because John, in this very chapter, twice applies the Greek pronoun Exeivos to Christ, although his name does not appear for some time before, as may be seen in the fifth and seventh verses, where he writes, “ Ye know that he (EXEIVOS) was manifested,” &c. And “ even as HE, EXEivos, is,” &c. The same occurs in chap. iv. 17. And indeed this pronoun, if its proper and customary signification be attended to, will be seen to have reference, not to the person who is named immediately before, but to one who has been noticed more remotely, or even not at all. The meaning of this passage, therefore, is, that the love of God is perceived in this, that Christ his son laid down his life for us.
You have satisfied me so far as respects the names of Jesus Christ :-1 now wish you to explain those testimonies relating to works and operations which our adversaries imagine to be ascribed to Christ in the Scriptures ? These testimonies are those in which, in their ap