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whom the word of God came, were called gods and sons of God, as in Psalm lxxxii. 6, “ I have said, Ye are gods ; and all of you children of the Most High.' None but a Unitarian would have returned such an answer to the charge of blasphemy, founded upon bis calling God his Father, and himself bis Son : our Lord's answer is the very answer that a Unitarian would offer.
Christians, of every sect, have always expressed what they have conceived to be the leading and essential doctripes of religion in their prayers. Trinitarian prayers have three objects of worship; thus in the Litany, “O God the Father of heaven-O God, the Son, Redeemer of the world_0 God, the Holy Ghost, proceeding from the Father and the Son." Unitarian prayers have but one object of worship, and that is the Father alone. In all the prayers of our Saviour, not a single Trinitarian prayer is to be found : they are all Unitarian ; for he always ad. dresses the Father, and never once mentions, as an ob. ject of his religious devotions, any other person. And when he teaches his disciples to pray, he teaches them to pray to the Father only. From this it is certain that " Jesus Christ was not a Trinitarian, but a Unitarian worshiper of God. Our Saviour was once asked this question, " What good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?" Our Lord's answer is precisely such an one as a Unitarian would give ; for he does not object to the word do: he does not say, that to have eternal life the inquirer could do nothing; or that if he talked of doing, he was in the high road to be for ever lost. He does not deny, that be who put the question had kept the commandments;
“ If thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.”
Our Saviour illustrates the Divine compassion in receiving a repenting sinner into favour and a state of pardon, in his parable of the prodigal son. The prodigal son, by his sufferings, is brought to reflection ; he feels his mise. rable state; he repents; he resolves to return to his father; to confess his guilt and to implore his forgiveness. The father, when he learns that his son is returning, goes out to meet him ; and when he meets him, he receives him in the most kind, affectionate, and merciful manner. In the whole of this interesting statement, there is nothing but sincere repentance to recommend the guilty son to the compassion and mercy of the father ; there are no myste
but he says,
rious doctrines to be believed, no atonement to be offered, nothing but the sincere repentance of the guilty son; that alone finds a place in the natural affection of the father. This is all a Unitarian representation of God's receiving and pardoning a repenting sinner.
To conclude this argument, by summing up the whole that has been said, our Saviour, contrary to all preachers of, writers on, and believers in, Trinitarian doctrines, never once used any of the peculiar terms by which those doctrines are usually expressed: he always speaks of God in the singular number : he constantly speaks of God and himself as two distint Beiógs : he declares that the Father is the only true God : that the Father is greater than he : that he himself is a man, and the son of man: that his power, authority, and doctrine, were from the Father: that he was taught and instructed of the Father : that he knew not the time of the day of judginent : that he was the Son of God, because he was sanctified and sent into the world by the Father : in bis prayers he had but one object of worship, the Father : he directs his disciples to pray to the Father oply: he says, the way to eternal life is to keep the commandments : he teaches that God, as a Father, has natural compassion towards his creatures ; and that repentance alone, without any other atonement, will give an effectual and saving interest in divine grace. Wbat, then, shall we say?, What should we say of any other person who should preach and pray as Jesus Christ preached and prayed? We should certainly say, he was a Unitarian. So then was Jesus Christ.
ANECDOTE OF LUTHER.
The following anecdote, omitted by Robertson, is related of Charles V., by, a French writer, in an enumeration of other deficiencies in the Scotch historian :- In the year 1547, when Charles V. entered Wittemberg in triumph, and visited the public monuments, Ferdinand, the famous Duke of Alva, and the Bishop of Arras, Granville, who attended him, proposed to him to destroy the tomb of Luther, which had been erected the
before, and to disinter the body of that heresiarch, in order to have it burnt. This prelatical zeal was not without the sanction of great examples, drawn from the appropriate
source of ecclesiastic history, which prove the legality of this procedure against a shade and a corpse. In 1428, Pope Boniface VHI. caused Wickliffe to be taken up fortynine years after his decease, and commanded that his remains should be publicly burnt. Two other Pontiffs also, Stephen and Sergius, did they not disinter Pope Formosa, from whose right hand they cut off three fingers, and threw him into the Tiber, eiglit months after his death? Charles Ve was not moved by the pressing exhortations of the Duke and the Bishop, although they were both his intimate coun. sellors. He listened to their remonstrances with much seriouspess. At last he replied, “ I have no longer any thing to do with Luther : Luther: has now a judge, whose jurisdiction I must not invade; besides, consider, gentlewen, I do not wage war against the dead, but against the living, who bear arms against me.". The Emperor kept to his word, and prohibited the demolition of Luther's tomb under pain of death,
OBSERVATIONS ON I cor. xv.
April 2, 1828. [Concluded from p. 89.] In the 20th, 21st, and 22nd verses of this chapter, thet apostle maintains the fact of Christ's resurrection, as the pledge and example of the resurrection of all human beings : at the same time, he points out à remarkable analogy between the two several dispensations of Death and Life.
now is Christ risen," &c. Now, i. e. "in opposition to the speculations of which I have spoken, and which controvert this plain, indisputable fact:" he is
risen,” the first fruits of those who sleep. The words, "and has become, are properly omitted by Griesbach. It is the strict affinity between Christ's resurrection, and the consequence here described, which gives to that historical event its chief magnitude.
22. This verse is explanatory of the preceding. On the subject of both, the reader will do well to consult a Dis. course. by the late Rev. Robert Tyrwhitt, M.A. Perhaps a more important service was never rendered by Scriptural Criticism to the cause of Truth. It would seem impossible to weigh Mr. Tyrwhitt's arguinent, without acknowledging that the simple humanity of the nature of Jesus Christ is a most valuable, animating and momentous doctrine ; since
it has an intimate connexion with the basis of the Christian's hope of immortality:*
From the beginning of ver. 23d to the end of the 28th, Paul digresses, with the view of declaring that Christ's mediatorial kingdom, after being completely victorious, will be surrendered to God, even the Father.
every man," or each, “in his own order." The writer appears desirous of obriating any expectation of the general resurrection being nigh at hand.
That great catastrophe was necessarily distant: it will take place afterward, or, which is the same thing, at Christ's final coming:
the end;" viz., “ of the Christian dispensation,” all the sublime and benevolent purposes of which will then have been answered. Not until these are fulfilled, will Christ deliver up the kingdom.
Language cannot supply clearer and more forcible terms in which to express our Lord's subordination to his God and Father.
when he shall have put down.”. Meaning, “ Jesus Christ shall have put them down.”. The pronoun “he,” in this clause, should not be read with an emphasis.
26. In translating this verse, I avail myself of no italics, but follow, most closely, the original : “The last enemy shall be destroyed, Death." The destruction of such a foe, is the burden of the apostle's reasoning and triumph.
27, "For he hath put," &c. These words are evidently borrowed from Ps. viii. 6: nor is it less clear that Paot now sets forth the vast extent of Christ's mediatorial authority and power.
- but when he saith," &c. “ Still, the Mediator's dominion is limited to created beings, and cannot include that Sovereign and Infinite Spirit from whom he himself, receives his empire."
that God may be all in all.” Our apostle, as
* Commentaries and Essays, &c., Vol. II. pp. 15–25. But this Discourse, accompanied by another, of kindred merit, on “The Creation of all Things by Jesus Christ,” has been separately printed by some of the Unitarian Book Societies, and, I trust, will, in consequence, be widely circulated. Both these Discourses are fine specimens of an analytical examination of the phraseology of Scripture ; both are level to men of the plainest capacity, while they claim, and will reward, the attention of every Christian student and scholar.
though he foresaw the corruption of the primary articles of Natural and Revealed Religion, is solicitous to affirm the proper unity, the absolute supremacy, of the object of his adoration. *
baptized for the dead.". I cannot profess to have ascertained the meaning of this unusual and difficult phraseology. At the same time, I see no reason to suppose that Paul now uses the term " baptized” in any other than its primary and literal import: his question seems referable to the 14th and 17th verses, and to the very persons of whom he there speaks; and I am disposed, on the whole, to adopt Dr. Hammond's paraphrase, which is, “ To what end did these men in their baptism avow their belief of the resurrection of the dead, if they believe it not?" : From this verse down to the 35th, the apostle evidently resumes a former and interrupted topic of argument: he adverts, once more, to his own situation, and to that of the members of the church at Corinth-wbich fact rather illas. trates and warrants Hammond's interpretation. On the other hand, I find no parallel form of expression to justify the sense put by that author on the words “ baptized for the dead.". I must therefore be content to wait for additional information. Meanwhile, it is not a little satisfactory to be persuaded that the grand doctrine taught by Paul in the present chapter remains divinely true, whatever be our ignorance or doubts concerning a part of his language, or some of his allusions.
30, 31, 32. The apostle was daily, and even hourly, exposed to the most formidable personal dangers, on account of the courage and diligence with which he preached, to Gentiles as well as Jews, the tenet of the resurrection of the dead-built on the resurrection of Jesus Christ. This fact he, in the most solemn manner,
protests” by his glorying on account of the believers at Corinth, as his converts : in this way, he affirms his perilous situation as a Christian and a Christian teacher.
When he adds, that he had “ fought with beasts at Ephesus," it is obvious, from the qualification with which he introduces the statement, that he speaks of men fero-cious as wild beasts. At Ephesus, he wrote this epistle:
See the Athenæúm (conducted by the late Dr. Aikin) for May, 1808.