Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

and the fruit of his body,' defy their uta moft skill to diftort them from their one one only obvious fenfe, viz. a lineal de fcendent from David, by an human father.

Again ; those unambiguous expressions, 4 the fon of man, and the man Cbriff Jesus,' are so intelligible, that a man must take infinite pains to misunderstand them. His pree dilection for a “xpuchon dognese,' to adopt the phrase of the shrewd and masterly author of the Confessional,' an hidden abstruse cabbalistic meaning, must have taken intįre poffeffion of his intellects, before he could melt down, by the subtle chemistry of sophistry, coarse evapgelic common sense into refined fcholastic nonsense. But, in fact, men of learning, from an accustomed attempt to folve real difficulties, contract an habit of perplexing easy truths, and, consequently, as often darken our light, as lighten our darkness.' Of this we have abundant testimony in the groundless, hypothesis, that the words, fan of man, and a man,' when applịed to Christ, mean merely an human creature of the male species, supernaturally born of an human female. Your AngloChristian friend, my Jewish friends, who is a plain Dayus, and no Oedipus, owns, that he cannot boat of an understanding ac-: commodated to the perception of the ingewo nuity and acuteness of expounding the foni of man,'to mean the son of woman only; especially, as he is not authorized to adopt this exposition by the sacred writings, either of the apostles or prophets; and would have been less astonished to have heard of a sect of philosophising fpirits maintaining, that " that the son of. man is the son of a man only.. He is equally dull in comprehending how an human male, 'the offspring of an human female alone, can be called a man. In his idea, ino man can be a man, who is not begotten by a man on the body of a woman ;and, in fact, it is impossible to invent'a name fully expressive of that creature of the brain, represented as sprung from the womb. of a woman alone, unconscious of a previous carnal knowledge of a man. Now, on the supposition, that such a being ever existed, except in the confufed'pericranium of a Christian Platonist, I defy every evan- * gelist to prove, that he can' be called "the" son of man, and á man, without a most unparalleled and unpardonable catachréfis, or abuse of words; which we are not instructed

to look for in the express and unambiguous revelation of the will of God, to man, contain ed in his merciful Gospel difpenfation administered by the oneʻmediator, between God and man, the man Christ Jesus. The inevitable consequence of the establishment of such a catachrelis is, that language must cease to be the vehicle of ideas. An appeal to dispassionate and unprejudiced right rea; son will quickly decide the point, whether the feriptwal appellations, the fon of man; anda man,sascribed to Jesus, the promised Mefliah, can admit any other fignification, thani that he was the son, as well of a man, as of a woman, and a man of corruptible fleth and blood like as wegare corruptible, I say, for it was entitely owing to the exertion of the power of God, in raising him from the dead, on the third day, that his body did not puffefy.; plura vitis.it

saws 1195 119?lyers Foot L I readily grant that Christ was divinely inspired, not partially, (like the prophcts, but universally,i or, to use an evangelic expreffion, without measure, a circumstance necessary to qualify him for preaching the Gospel of Peace; that he worked miracles, fór, without the exertion of such divinely,

delegated

gated power, he could not have proved the ... truth of his divine commiffion; and that, though subject to human infirmities and pass fions, and 'tempted like as we are,' he lived and died without fin. The end and intent of God's gracious Gospel difpenfation beá ing of a moral nature, or to introduce an: universal purity and holiness among men, it is very plain that this moral end could not be secured but by moral means; and that no moral means could be better caleu: lated to promote the moral perfection of man, than the illustrious and un paralleled example of a man practifing obedience to the will of God; eveti unto death, and that the most fingering, extcruciating, and ignominious death of the cross; the most disinterested and generous love to his fellow creatures, and spotless innocence and purity. Hence this truly good man is with the strictest propriety, stiled the Holy One,' or the one holy man i For, though.God made man,' or mankind, upright, or peci fect, that is, capable of arriving by a praca tical conformity to the law impreft onhis understanding, at the moral perfection of his nature, yet no man, before Christ, ever did attain it, and, to the more inexcusable

teproach

reproach of his nominal disciples, no mani, "after him, has completely imitated the example of his literally finless life and death

; But that our Lord, Jesus Christ, was a man, that he was begotten by a man on the body of a woman, in the honorable eftate of matrimony, as we fellow creatures are, cannot surely admit a doubts in the mind of any Christian, who, unshackled by systematic prejudices, grudges not the pains to consult the numerous passages of the New Testament, where Christ is ex. pressly stiled the son of man, and a man;' without any of those strange qualifying limitations, and perplexing explications, which Christian sophists affix to these simple and intelligible expressions; expressions, selfevident to every man, whose head is not bewildered by the nice subtle distinctions of

the vain philosophy,' contained in the writings of the schoolmen of Alexandria, who are presumptuously denominated fathers of the church, whereas many of them might more aptly be termed babes in

Chrift:

Why

« AnteriorContinuar »