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cKeaWd, wis o£ the substance of the Father, one with him in power and eternity? Does it take the human nature of Jesus Christ to compose the Trinity? If so, there was no Trinity until the Son of God was created in the womb of the virgip. He states, that if Jesus Christ is the Son of God, he is not Eternal; yet the article states, that he is of the same substance, power and Eternity of the Father. But should the Doctor say that the term Son in the first article, has reference to Jesus Christ after he came in the flesh. We answer, the next article will convince him of his mistake.
2d Article. rt The Son, who is the Word of the Father, begotten of him, from everlasting, the very and Eternal God, of one substance with the Father, took man's nature in the womb of the blessed virgin, of her substance," &c.
In this article of the English articles, the Methodist discipline, has omitted eight words, viz. "Begotten of him from everlasting," and "of her substance."
The first begotten from Everlasting, We think has certain reference to the divine nature of our Lord, and not to the human nature, and so reads the article; "The Son, who is the Word of the Father, the very and Eternal God, begotten of him from everlasting," &c. The Doctor acknowledges, the Word that " was with God, and was God," was the divine nature of our Lord; and let it be remembered the article states "the Son who is the Word of the Father." The article, therefore, proves, that the church of England, believed, that the Sonship of our Lord referred to his divine nature, not only so, but it states, that the same character took man's an ture in the womb of the virgin of hex substance. How different is 'this doctrine, from the idea that the Son of God was created in the womb of the blessed virgin.
We shall now look at the next article of the Trinity. It is as follows—
"The Holy Ghost proceeding from the Father and the Son, is of one substance, majesty and glory with the Father, and the Son, very and eternal God." Two remarks in this article, are worthy of our notice, viz. "The Holy Ghost proceeding from the Father and Son." Does the Holy Ghost, we will ask, proceed from the divine nature of our Lord, or from the human nature? If it proceeds from the Son and the divine nature, it psoves that Jesus Christ is the Son of God in his divine nature; and if it proceeds from the human nature, it proves that Jesus Christ is the Son of God in his human nature.— If the Holy Ghost proceeds from the human nature of Jesus Christ, it proves the Holy Ghost to be part human and part divine, for which we presume the Doctor would not contend.
Perhaps it will be objected to by those who believe with the Doctor in this point, that he does not fully believe in the English articles. We thought this might be fact; for it is scarcely possible, for a man to believe in the articles of the church of England, and hold, and advocate the tenets he advances in his notes, we have cited. One thing has caused us much grief, and sorrow of heart, and this is, christians of different orders, contending for the doctrines he has advanced j viz. denying Jesus Christ as the Stm of God Jh his divine nature, and at the same time pr<v fessing to be tripitarians; and breathing out slanders against all that dissent from them in opinion, and branding them with the name Unitarian, Arian, Socinian, and possibly Deism, when at the same time the characters who have to bear this slander, are preaching the exact doctrine contained in the Trinitarian articles. These charges have been constantly brought ugainst us as an order of people, by those characters, who believe with Doctor Clarke, respecting the Sonship of Jesus Christ. We do not mean to prefer this charge against the Doctor, neither wholly against any one order of christians. We tako pleasure in saying the Doctor, has disclosed his views with great meekness, and commendable modesty. He says, " I trust I may be permitted to say with all due respect, for those who diner from me, that the doctrine of the Eternal Sonship ie anti-scriptural, and dajigerous j" he then ^assigns his reasons for rejecting the doctrine.
Further views of the same subject, in continuation.
The first of which is, " I have not been able to find any express declaration in scripture concerning it." We hope this reason is satisfactorily answered in the preceding part of this work; if not satisfactory, the two chapters from Mr. Fletcher which we annex, will, we think, remove all lingering doubts.
We think it scarcely worth while to repeat here his reasons, as they are transcribed into this work. We are the more sensitive on this doctrine, because we believe, and especially in his 4th reason, and tenor of the whole, that if valid, he destroys the God-head, and the Trinity entirely. His remarks, however, we think more curious, than sound. He has given us concessions of sundry doctrines which oversets his own conclusions, and system. He says "the divine nature had no beginning," if the Doctor had kept this in view, and his ideas of the nature of generation out of view, he would have been saved all his trouble and difficulty. The simple question Is, if Jesus Christ is the proper Son of God the Father, does he not partake of the fullness of: the God-head as really, as absolutely, and in every s.ense as fully and inherently as Gad the Father?
4>ur doctrine &, tiiat previous to the incarnation, and from all eternity he existed as the Word.
Suppose we admit their views and doctrine of generation as to the relation of Father and Son— and devote a page or two to its consideration. Let us, premise, as to the foregoing question, Mr. Millard answers on his plan, the Son would not partake the fulness of the Godhead, &c. And the Doctor has something of the same idea. Mr. Millard states, that the Son took part of the nature of God, and part of the nature of man, not the whole. The Doctor says, that if Jesus Christ is the Son of God in his divine nature, it destroys the Deity of Christ, and if " his deity be taken away, the whole gospel scheme of redemption is ruined." In this, the Doctor and Mr. Millard perfectly agree, viz. that if our Lord is the Son of God in his divine nature, then he is not God. Mr. Millard,promptly denies the doctrine of theTrinity, and professes to be in sentiment Unitarian; the Doctor professes to be a Trinitarian.
Mr. Millard's arguments to support his system, he has triumphantly summed up, in this triumphant question—" if Jesus Christ be the proper son of God, how then can he be the God of which he is the son?" The Doctor's arguments to support the same question are "if Christ be the Son of God, as to his divine nature, then his Father is of necessity prior, consequently superior to him; and if the divine nature were begotten of the Father, then it must be in time; i.e. there was a period when it did not exist, and a period when it began to exist . This destroys the eternity of our blessed Lord, and robs him at once of his Godhead."
Suppose a child of fifteen years, should ask, wlro is this Mr. Millard, is he a man? and he