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Ihe God-/iead, our belief certainly ?s not, ito two or three distinct co-ordinate Gods, therefore it is, their reasoning has ne application to us.
But we will further examine it. The original transgression of man was against the Supreme Being, the God-head. The Trinity or Ged-head through the Word or Son, did the work of creation, providence and redemption. And in this work, the second person of the God-head had fellowship of nature, acts, counsel, and ways with the God-head, or Father; for we apprehend, the general term Father comprehends the whole Godhead, as it is many times used in scripture. The. Father sent the Son, that is, it was the act, counsel, and way of the whole God-head to do it. And that the second person of the Trinity who came forth from the Father, was always in the boson? of the God-head, and in perfect fellowship therewith in the work and worship of manifestation and revelation. He was subordinate to the entire God-faead, in his scriptural relation, to their counsel, and way, and acts; and in his personality, did nothing alone, but in fellowship.
An atonement for man's original transgression against the infinite majesty of the God-head, was as we Relieve, necessary; for the offence was against the triune, and Most High God. And the scriptural mode of man's becoming reconciled to God, is according to the eternal nature, act, counsel, and way, us manifested and revealed through the appointed Mediatorial power and agency. This, to those who have not become reconciled, and adopted into the union with Jehovah, it seems, is foolishness. But the proclamation and promise of pardon and salvation, was also necessary. I£ this assurance had not been made, it would be much moie difficult fop a sensible mind to have believed, without such security and revelation. And, on what foundation would our faith, in a ■pardoning edict have rested? A demonstration of , God's justice and love, was necessary to turn man from his evil way to repentanee and reconciliation to God. Creature wisdom, excellency, and power, could not have reconciled righteousness and grace together; could not have atoned for an offence against an infinite majesty, or conferred salvation in the method of an eternal redemption ; could not have propitiated infinite justice; could not have conferred an exemption from endless punishment, and advanced him to an endless felicity. The renovation of a moral world, and the display of infinite love, in taking away sin and its effects, and turning apostatized man to holiness, was a work worthy of a compassionate God; and which none other than God could have performed.
When we consider further, that universal sin, brought universal death into our world; and in this condition that "life and immortality" should be " brought to light" by the Word, is wonderful, yet in the way and method revealed, is altogether congruous, and worthy of a merciful God. That "the Holy Ghost," "the spirit of truth," should be also sent " to teach you all things," and that the Prince of Peace should say, " my peace I give unto you ; not as the world giveth, give I unto you," not only evinces the work of a God, but it is demonstrative that the agent on whom the honourof the work devolved must be infinite, and a participant in the counsels of the Most High. Wild must be the fancy, and sorry the argument, which can deduce from this wonderful work of infinite love, "gross absurdity;" or that this can be concluded, a relinquishment of a claim, by paying the demand; when it is to be considered, the unveiling of the method, of reconciliation and forgiveness of sins, and justifying the ways of God's justice and mercy to man; and pointing out to man as a moral agent, the means of his reconciliation to God, in order to satisfy the law.
The notions of our opponents, both as to our beliefs, and their own reasoning, appears founded on fallacious and imaginary premises. It is easy to draw conclusions, and raise up fantasies of absurdity, if we are at liberty to make conjectural and human premises, upon divine philosophy and revelation.
From reading and reasoning from scripture purely, and the exercise of pious wisdom and study, who can doubt, that the "way of man's, reconciliation to God" through the mercy, and gracious pleasure, and loving kindness of God, is an everlasting purpose of the Most Holy Trinity: and that the second person of the God-head, made promise and proclamation of "the glad tidings of salvation." The three one do not, as our opponents express it, pay the demand, or relinquish a claim. When man is reconciled to God, in the way divinely appointed, the ransom from the sentence of the divine law is complete, the period of forfeiture is concluded, the covenant and dispensation of mercy is perfected; the moral disorder is cured, and man is regenerated and sanctified by the spirit of God to that measure of holiness which is a growing peace and union with God, through Christ .
Man was created through Christ, and is redeemed through his infinite merits, and infinite atoning •sacrifice, and is made joint heir with him in a heavenly inheritance, agreeable to the divine purposes and counsels. "Hereby we know the love of God, because he laid down his life for us.,■' Hereby we know our faith is no delusion. Man having disobeyed the Adamic law, the Word was pledged, that he should "surely die," and the promise of mercy was then declared, and is perfected through the Mediatorial dispensation. Our Lord became under the Adamic law a propitiatory sacrifice, triumphed over death by his own power, was the first of the resurrection, and he is the eternal life, and light, " whom to know aright is life eternal" to us. By the power of his infinite love for us, "at the consummation of the ages," he led captivity captive, and saints who had tasted of death, at the coming of the prinee of peace to this portion of his dominions to take the keys of death, swelled the train of his ascension to glory. When he said, " Lo I come," to do the will of the God-head, he took away the legal sacrifice, and established " the evangelical dispensation," and proclaimed and made known the mediatorial law. Man in order to be saved must take hold of the divine dispensation, must be saved through the love and righteousness of our Lord, must believe in him, must have faith in the mediatorial rule ox law, and must take hold of the hope therein set forth, as the only way of reconciliation with God.
This method of dispensation, was of all things most needed. The wisest and best of moral philosophers, anxiously waited for, and expected this divine, remedial philosophy, and declared, that a way of man's restoration to divine favour must be revealed; as man was absolutely and entirely ignorant upon the subject, The promulgation of the mediatorial relief must be of Gotf, and irr which, no created merit or power had part. Our Lord " trod the wine press alone."
We have mentioned before, that some who have been our brethren in the belief of the Trinity, have been driven by the assumed premises, and specious arguments of our opponents, from a belief in the three persons "which bear record in heaven," under a fear of the suggestion that they were believers in two, or three co-ordinate Gods. From what we have said, our brethren who have abandoned the Trinitarian ground of doctrine, will discover, that we consider the accusation as the "baseless fabric" of a fable, a reckless, and unjust attack, from which there is no manner of reasonable difficulty or alarm; for the doctrine of the Trinity is as real and well founded a doctrine, and as clearly demonstrated, as any scriptural revelation, or tenet of our faith. And we devoutly trust that under the exercise of pious wisdom, and christian reconsideration of the subject, they will no longer feed upon "the husks that the swine did eat;" and that they will return to the Trinitarian flock, which the scriptures quietly lead "into green pastures, beside the still waters."
It will be borne in mind, that Origen and Sabellius taught as one of their doctrines, as we understand it, that God did not exist in three persons, properly speaking, but exercised himself in three different capacities, or offices, and that there are different qualities or substances in the divine nature; for instance, he acted as Father in creation, as Son in redemption, and as Holy Ghost in being poured out on the apostles. And to illustrate their different substances or qualities, they represented them under the emblem of the sun Or fire, which