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Head over all things to the church.” “ Him hath God exalted—to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.” “Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father." “ Then shall the Son also be subject to him, who did put all things under him ; that God may be all in all.” Much we find, in the sacred writings, of this tenor. This has induced some incautious readers to suppose, that the whole Person of Christ is derived and dependent! But these, and all similar scriptures, relate to the mediatorial administration of Christ in his glorified humanity. It is because he is the Son of man." The whole economy of grace proceeds on the plan, of the constituted offices of Christ ; while it rests, at the same time, on the everlasting basis of his real and proper Divinity. Christ in his humiliation was appointed to a certain work. And in his glorified humanity he is appointed to the government of the world, as well as to the work of intercession in heaven ; till the chosen of God shall be gathered in. The power and glory of the infinite Godhead, during this mediatorial reign, are exhi. bited through the glorified humanity of Christ. Angels are his ministering spirits, to gather in the heirs of salvation. And sufficient notice is given, that all this is a constituted economy between the Persons in the Godhead. But when the judgment shall be finished, this peculiar economy of grace will cease, as having fully accomplished its object. But the Divinity of Christ will not cease. Nor will it cease to be a truth, that there are three in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost; and that these three are one.
We find, in the writings of St. Paul, the Unity of the Godhead, in opposition to the pagan polytheism asserted; from which, some attempt to de.
rive an argument against the doctrine of the Trinity, and the proper Deity of Christ. Says the apostle ; “ One Lord, one faith, one baptism." “For though there be, that are called gods, whether in heaven, or, on earth, (as there be gods many and lords many.) But to us there is but one God the Father; of whom are all things, and we in him ; and one Lord Jesus Christ; by whom are all things, and we by him." Does this text indicate, that either of the Persons mentioned in it is not the very God ? By no means. All things are of the Father, and by Christ. But this does not suggest that those two Persons mentioned are not equally divine. They act different official parts, in the economy of redemption. But each is God. In other sacred passages we learn, that all things . were made by Christ, and for him; and by him all things consist. The one God in this passage is contrasted with the many gods of the heathen : And the one Lord Jesus Christ, with the many pagan mediators and demigods. But nothing is implied in the text, which militates against there being a Trinity in this one God; and nothing against the Mediator's being one of these divine Persons. It teaches, what Paul (in view of the mythology of the pagans) asserts to Timothy; “ There is one God; and one Mediator between God and man ; the man Christ Jesus." The heathen owned many gods ; and many mediators, or deified heroes, on whom they depended to plead their cause with the superior gods. The Christians own but one of each ; one God ; and one Mediator ; who is a man, and is at the same time the very God, as well as man. Paul says nothing here in opposition to there being a Trinity in Unity in this one God of the Christians ; and nothing in opposition to Christ's being one with God, and truly the infinite
Jehovah. And throughout the oracles of truth we are assured that he is one with God, and is the true God.
The unity of God is asserted, in the Old and New Testaments, only in opposition to heathen polytheism. But with respect to a metaphysical unity, (or such an unity as to exclude a Trinity of Persons) the scriptures teach no such thing.
Is it possible then, to evade the conclusion of Trinitarians, which lies on the face of the inspired writings, that “ There are three, who bear record in heaven ; the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost ; and these three are one ?"
TESTIMONIES OF THE PRIMITIVE FATHERS IN FAVOR OF THE DOCTRINE OF A TRINITY IN UNITY IN THE GODEAD; AND OF THE PROPER DIVINITY OF JESUS CHRIST.
We are to call no man father upon earth. .Our Christian sentiments must in all things rest on the sacred oracles. But the testimonies of the fathers soon after the commencement or the Christian era, relative to the doctrine of the Trinity, and of the Divinity of Christ, must amount to strong circumstantial evidence relative to these points. “ If thou knowest not, O thou fairest among women, go thy way forth by the footsteps of the flock." In doubtful points, never be in haste to adopt novel sentiments.
To me it appears very evident, that the doctrine of the Trinity in Unity, essentially as held at this day by Calvinistic Trinitarians, was believed from the days of the apostles. That this was the sentiment of the Church in the three first centuries, I shall now attempt to prove. But I shall previously remark, that there are some minor and nonessential differences among Trinitarians, relative to the Three in the Godhead. On so deep and sublime a subject, they have said some different things. But their differences do not materially affect the subject. On the great essential points,