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and to those who keep peace, there will be no end to the throne of David and of his government: for establishing and for building it with judgment and with justice now and for ever.” Here Jonathan, in direct opposition to Christians, denies to the son so born the epithets “Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God, and Everlasting Father;” and applies to him only the title of “The Prince of Peace,” (nearly synonymous with Messiah,) on account of his preserving peace during his reign, as was promised of the Messiah. (2 Kings xx. 19: “Is it not good (says Hezekiah) if peace and truth be in my days P” 2 Chron. xxxii. 26: “The wrath of the Lord came not upon them in the days of Hezekiah.”) This application of the term anointed (or Messiah) is made to Hezekiah in the same manner as to other eminent kings, often called Messiah in the Sacred Writings: — 1 Samuel xxii. 3: “Behold, here I am | witness against me before the Lord, and his anointed, (or his Messiah,) the king.” 2 Samuel xxiii. 1: “David the son of Jesse said, and the man who was raised up on high, the Messiah of the God of Jacob,” &c. Ch. xxii. 51 : “He is the tower of salvation for his king, and sheweth mercy to his Messiah, unto David, and to his seed for evermore.” 1 Samuel ii. 10: “The Lord shall judge the ends of the earth; and he shall give strength unto his King, and exalt the horn of his Messiah.” Psalm xx. 6: “Now know I that the Lord saveth his Messiah.” Isaiah xlv. 1: “Thus saith the Lord to his Messiah, to Cyrus.” The reign of Hezekiah was so accompanied with peace and success, that some Jewish commentators entertained the opinion that Hezekiah was really the last Messiah promised by God. R. Hillel, most now ox-hwo rown Dno los on an opx : npin pa “There is no Messiah for the Israelites, for they enjoyed it (i. e. they had him) at the time of Hezekiah.” If Trinitarians still insist, in defiance of the above authorities, and under pretence of the word “anointed” or “Messiah,” found in the Targum of Jonathan, that his interpretation should be understood of the expected Messiah, then, as far as depends upon the interpretation given by him of verses 6 and 7, they must be compelled to relinquish the idea that he expected a divine deliverer. Moreover, all other celebrated Jewish writers, some of whom are more ancient than Jonathan, apply the passage in question to Hezekiah, some of them differing, however, from him in the application of the epithets contained in verse 6. Talmud Sanhedrim, ch. 11, “God said, let Hezekiah, who has five names, take vengeance upon the king of Assyria, who has taken upon himself five names also.” R. Sholomo follows the annotation made by Shammai. “For a child is born,” &c. Though Ahaz was wicked, his son, who was born to him to be a king in his stead, shall be righteous, the government of God and his yoke shall be on his shoulder, because he shall obey the law and keep the commandments thereof, and shall incline his shoulder to the burden of God.—And he calls his name, &c. God, who is the wonderful counsellor, and the mighty and everlasting Father, called his name the Prince of Peace, for peace and truth shall be in his days.”* The reader will not suppose the application of the
* It is worth noticing, that “to be called” and “to be” do not invariably signify the same thing; since the former does not always imply that the thing is in reality what it is called, but the use of it is justified when the thing is merely taken notice of in that view. See Luke i. 36: “This is the sixth month with her who was called (that is reputed) barren.” Isaiah lxi. 3: “That they might be called (or accounted) trees of righteousness.” This is more especially the case when the phrase “to be called” has for its subject not a person, but the name of a person. See Deut. xxv. 10; “And his name shall be called in Israel, the house of him that hath his shoe loosed.” Genesis xlviii, 16: “Let my name be named on them.”
terms “wonderful Counsellor, mighty God, everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace,” to Hezekiah, to be unscriptural, when he refers to page 274 of this work, and considers the following passages, in which the same epithets are used for human beings, and even for inanimate objects. 2 Chron. ii. 9, “The house which I am about to build shall be wonderful great.” Micah iv. 9: “Is there no king in thee? Is thy counsellor perished?” Genesis xiii. 6: “Hear us: thou art a Mighty Prince amongst us.” Judges ix. 13: “Should I leave my wine which cheereth God and man?” that is, master and servant. 2 Thess. ii. 4: “Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God.” Gen. xlix. 26: “To the utmost bound of the everlasting hills.” 1 Samuel iv. 8: “Who shall deliver us out of the hands of these mighty gods?” which Cruden interprets of the Jewish ark. Isaiah xliii. 28: “Therefore I have profaned the princes of the sanctuary.” I wonder how those who found their opinion respecting the Trinity on terms applied in common to God and creatures, can possibly overlook the plain meaning of the term “Son,” or “Only-begotten,” continually applied to the Saviour throughout the whole of the New Testament; for should we understand the term God in its strict sense, as denoting the First Cause, (that is, a being not born nor begotten,) we must necessarily confess that the idea of God is as incompatible with the idea of the “Son,” or “Only begotten,” as entity is with non-entity; and therefore that to apply both terms to the same being will amount to the grossest solecism in language. As to their assertion, that there are found in the Scriptures two sets of terms and phrases, one declaring the humanity of Jesus, and another his deity, and that he must therefore be acknowledged to have possessed a twofold nature, human and divine, I have fully noticed it in pp. 162–166, 245–248, pointing out such passages as contain two sets of terms and phrases applied also to M
Moses and even to the chiefs of Israel and to others; and that, if it is insisted upon, that each word in the Sacred Writings should be taken in its strict sense, Moses and others, equally with the Saviour, must be considered as gods, and the religion of the Jews and Christians will appear as Polytheistical as that of Heathens. Although there is the strictest consistency between all the passages in the sacred books, Trinitarians, with a view to support their opinion, charge them first with inconsistency, and then attempt to reconcile the alleged contradiction by introducing the doctrine of the union of two natures, divine and human, in one person, forgetting that at the same time the greatest incongruity exists between the nature of God and man, according to both revelation and common sense. If Christianity inculcated a doctrine which represents God as consisting of three persons, and appearing sometimes in the human form, at other times in a bodily shape like a dove, no Hindoo, in my humble opinion, who searches after truth, can conscientiously profess it in preference to Hindooism; for that which renders the modern Hindoo system of religion absurd and detesta’le, is, that it represents the Divine nature, though one, as consisting of many persons, capable of assuming diff ent forms for the discharge of different offices. I am, however, most firmly convinced, that Christianity is entirely free from every trace of Polytheism, whether gross or refined. I therefore enjoy the approbation of my conscience in publishing the Precepts of this religion as the source of Peace and Happiness.
George smallField, PRINTER, Homerton.