« PrécédentContinuer »
13). So likewise in many other places. These quotations have been taken from the prophetical parts of the Word; but, in the historical parts, the same things are represented by the wars of the children of Israel with various nations: for whatever is written in the Word, either in its prophetical or historical parts, has reference to the Lord; and hence the Word is divine. Many arcana relating to the Lord's glorification are contained in the rituals of the Israelitish Church; as in its burnt offerings and sacrifices, in its sabbaths and feasts, and in the priesthood of Aaron and the Levites: so also in the other ordinances of Moses, which are called laws, judgments, and statutes: and this is meant by the Lord's words when he said to the disciples, "All things must be fulfilled which were written in the law of Moses -concerning me " (Luke xxiv. 44); and when he said of Moses to the Jews," He wrote of me" (John v. 46).
From all this then it is evident, that the Lord came into the world to subjugate the hells, and to glorify his human; and that the passion of the cross was the final conflict, by which he fully conquered the hells, and fully glorified his human. The passages in the prophetical part of the Word which treat of the Lord's combats with the hells and victories over them; or, what is the same thing, which treat of the last judgment executed by him when in the world; as also of his passion, and the glorification of his human; are so numerous, that were they all adduced, they would fill many pages.
THE LORD, BY THE PASSION OF THE CROSS, DID NOT TAKE AWAY SINS, BUT BORE THEM.
15. There are some within the church, who believe that the Lord by the passion of the cross took away sins, and made satisfaction to the father, and thus redeemed mankind: some also imagine that he transferred to himself the sins of those who have faith in him, bore them, and cast them into the depth of the sea, that is, into hell: in which opinion they confirm themselves by the words of John concerning Jesus: "Behold, the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world" (John i. 29) and by these words of the Lord in Isaiah: "He hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows.-He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.-Jehovah hath made the iniquities of us all to meet on him. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter.-He was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken: and he made his grave with the
wicked, and with the rich in his death.-He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. He hath poured out his soul unto death; and he was numbered with the transgressors: and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors" (liii. 4, to the end). Both these passages relate to the temptations and passion of the Lord; and by his taking away sins, and by the iniquities of us all meeting on him, the same is meant as by carrying sorrows and iniquities. It shall therefore be shewn, in the first place, what is implied by bearing iniquities, and afterwards, what by taking them away. By the Lord's bearing iniquities, nothing else is meant than his sustaining dire temptations; also, his suffering the Jews to treat him as they had treated the word; which they did, because he was the Word. For the church, which at that time existed with the Jewish nation, was then in a state of utter devastation, in consequence of having perverted every thing contained in the Word, so that there was not a single truth left; which also was the reason that they did not acknowledge the Lord. This is meant, and was signified, by all the circumstances that attended the Lord's passion. The prophets were also treated in a similar manner, because they represented the Lord with respect to the Word, and thence with respect to the church; and the Lord was pre-eminently THE PROPHET.
That the Lord was THE PROPHET, may appear from these passages: Jesus said, " a prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house" (Matt. xiii. 57; Mark vi. 4; Luke iv. 24). Jesus said, "it cannot be that a prophet perish out of Jerusalem " (Luke xiii. 33). "And the multitude said, This is Jesus the prophet of Nazareth" (Matt. xxi. 11; John vii. 40). "And there came a fear on all; and they glorified God, saying that a great prophet is risen up among us" (Luke vii. 16). So it is declared by Moses, that a prophet should be raised out of the midst of their brethren, whose words they shall obey" (Deut. xviii. 15-19).
That the prophets also represented the state of the church, and were commanded to do certain things with that view, may appear from the following instances: The prophet Isaiah was for that purpose enjoined to loose the sackcloth from off his loins, and to put off the shoe from his foot, and to walk naked and bare-foot three years, for a sign and a wonder (Isaiah xx. 2, 3). The prophet Jeremiah, in order that he might represent the state of the church, was commanded to get for himself a linen girdle, and put it upon his loins, and not put it in water, and that he should hide it in the hole of a rock near the river Euphrates and after many days he found it rotten (Jerem. xiii. 1-7). The same prophet was commanded, for the same
purpose, not to take a wife in that place, nor to enter into the house of mourning, neither go to lament, nor enter into the house of feasting (Jerem. xvi. 2, 5, 8). The prophet Ezekiel, that he might represent the state of the church, was commanded to take unto him a barber's razor, and cause it to pass upon his head, and upon his beard; and afterwards to divide it, and to burn with fire the third part of it in the midst of the city, to smite a third part of it with a knife, and to scatter a third part in the wind; and that he should take a few in number and bind them in his skirts, then take of them again, and cast them into the midst of the fire, and burn them (Ezek. v. 1-4). He was also commanded, for the same purpose, to prepare for himself stuff for removing, and to remove into another place in the sight of the children of Israel; and that he should bring forth his stuff by day, and should go forth in the evening through a hole made in the wall, covering his face so that he might not see the ground; and that so he should be a sign unto the house of Israel, and should say, I am your sign: like as I have done, so shall it be done unto you (Ezek. xii. 3-7, 11). The prophet Hosea, that he might represent the state of the church, was commanded to take to himself a harlot for a wife and it is written that he did so, and that she bare him three children, one of whom was called Jezreel [Dropping of the friendship of God], the second, She that hath not obtained mercy, and the third, Not my people (see Hosea i. 2-9). And, again, he was commanded to go and love a woman beloved of her friend, yet an adultress; whom also he bought for fifteen pieces of silver (Hosea iii. 1, 2). The prophet Ezekiel, that he might represent the state of the church, was also commanded to take a tile, and to portray upon it the city Jerusalem, and to lay siege against it, and build a fort against it, and cast a mount against it, and to put an iron pan between him and the city, and to lie on his left side three hundred and ninety days, and afterwards on his right side forty days: Also to take wheat, barley, beans, lentiles, millet, and fitches, and make bread thereof, which he should then eat by measure; and also, that he should eat it as barley cakes, and bake it with the dung of man: and because he prayed that it might not be so, he was allowed to bake it with cows' dung (Ezek. iv. 1-15). Other prophets also represented other things; as Zedekiah, by the horns of iron that he made (1 Kings xxii. 11): And another prophet, by causing himself to be smitten and wounded, and putting ashes on his face (1 Kings XX. 35-38). In general, the prophets represented the Word in its ultimate sense, which is that of the letter, by wearing a garment of hair (see Zech. xiii. 4): thus Elijah was clothed with such a coat, and was girt about his loins with a leathern girdle (2 Kings i. 8): so also John the Baptist had his raiment of camels' hair, a leathern girdle about his loins, and ate locusts