« FöregåendeFortsätt »
tions towards him. If Christ be much evidence, in Scripture, that God as well as man; then He ought Jesus Christ is truly God, as to have the supreme affection of there is that there is any God. all hearts.
For if He, to whom Divine Names But, how can those give Christ are given, Divine Perfections asthe supreme affection of their cribed, Divine Works attributed, hearts, who imagine that he was and the highest Divine Honours no more than a mun, or, at most, rendered, be not truly God, it must a created or derived being, infinite- be impossible to prove, from the ly inferior to the Deity? Though Scriptures, that there is a God. one's love to Christ may fall below; It has been owing, not to want of yet, it is hardly credible, that it evidence, but to blindness of heart, should ever rise above his views of that the professed believers of the his personal dignity and worth. I Christian religion, have so frequentonly add,
ly rejected the truth respecting 4. It is necessary to have correct the Person of the Messiah. If they sentiments of the Person of Christ, had all been divested of reasoning in order to treat him in a becoming pride; if they had all been disposmanner; or, to give unto him the ed to receive with meekness the glory which is his due.
ingrafted word, they would all As Christ is a Divine Person, have been agreed on this important He ought to be worshipped as the subject.
• all men should By rejecting the testimony of honour the Son, even as they Christ and his apostles, they have ought to honour the Father.' caused divisions and contentions
But, to give Divine honours to in the church, subverted the docany created or derived being, is trines of grace, and robbed the idolatry. And though some argue, blessed Redeemer of the glory due that it is right to pay Divine hon- unto his great and holy name. ours to such a being; yet, it is not 2. If the sacred Scriptures teach believed, that even they themselves us, that Jesus Christ is both God can sincerely and understandingly and man, in two natures and one do it.
person; then his Person is truly A few INFERENCES will now mysterious. His Divine nature close the discourse.
could not have become human; nor 1. It appears from what has been could his human nature have besaid, that the professors of Christ- come Divine; nor can his two natianity, in embracing such different ures be blended together. How, and erroneous sentiments of the then, could the Divine and human Person of Christ, have incurred natures be so united in Christ Jegreat guilt. They have embraced sus, as to constitute but one, indisuch sentiments, with the sacred vidual person ? It is a profound Scriptures in their hands, in which mystery. “Great is the mystery the person of the adorable Redeem- of godliness; God was manifest in er is clearly and fully described. the flesh.” It is plainly taught, in Scripture, But, be it remembered, that a that Christ was truly man. And mystery and an absurdity, are two it is as plainly taught, in Scrip- things. Absurdities are inconture, that Christ was truly God.ceivable, and must be rejected: 'There is as much evidence, in the mysteries may be stated, and must New Testament, of the supreme be received. Mysteries are not Divinity of Christ, as there is of peculiar to the volume of Revelahis veracity. Indeed, there is as tion. The world of nature is full
of them. There are mysteries re- Some say, and publicly preach, lating to electricity, to magnetism, that, to be a Christian, it is only
, to gravitation. The union of soul necessary to assent to this single and body in man, is an inscrutable proposition, “ Jesus is the Christ.” mystery. Dr. Price, who rejected This is opening the door of liberalthe mystery of Christ's Person, ity very wide. For, according to confessed, that there is a mystery this opinion, all are true believers, in the running of water down except Deists. hill."
But if, as has been shown, none The Conception of Christ, as can have right views of the Gospel, well as the union of two natures in or right affections towards Christ, bis Person, was a mystery. But or true faith in Him, or can render Deither of them is more mysterious, Him due honours, without essenthan the very ground of the Divine tially correct sentiments of His Existence.
Person; it will follow, that all, 3. Does the sacred Scripture teach who have never had such sentius, that Christ possesses the Divine ments of the Person
of the Saviour, and human natures, in one Person? were never real Christians; and Then there may be Three Persons that all, who are now destitute of in the Godhead. Since the Person such sentiments, are destitute of of Christ comprises the human na- true faith. “ If (said Christ) ye ture, it must, necessarily, be dis believe not that I am he, ye shall tinct from the Person, both of the die in your sins.” Father and the Spirit. Hence, 5. It appears, in the light of Christ always spake to and of the this subject, that those must be Father, as a Person distinct from very criminal, who entertain corhimself; and of the Holy Spirit, as rect sentiments of Christ's Person, There is no greater mystery in the and treat Him as they ought Trinity, than in the Person of Their own consciences bind them Christ. Those, who can believe to love, serve and worship Him, what the Scripture says of Christ, as their Lord and their God. If may believe what the Scripture they refuse, they stand condemned says of the Godhead; “ There are of themselves: and not only so, Three that bear record in heaven, but the wrath of God is revealed the Father, the Word, and the from heaven, against all ungodliHoly Ghost : AND THESE THREE ness and unrighteousness of men, ARE OxE."
who hold the truth in unrighteous4. If it be so important, as has ness.” It deeply concerns such perbeen shown, to have correct senti- sons, and all others, who enjoy the ments respecting Christ's Person; light of the Gospel, inmediately then those are in an error, who to give Christ their hearts, lest argue, that it is of no consequence they perish from the way, when what sentiments professing Christ. His wrath is kindied but a little. ians entertain of the Person of the BLESSED ARE ALL THEY THAT PUT Redeemer.
THEIR TRUST IN HIM.
On Revivals of Religion. ment. They would not object to
the regular attendance upon religThere are some who look with a ious meetings on the Sabbath, but suspicious eye on every thing which they think the commandment is, bears the name of a revival of re- " six days shalt thou labour," and ligion. They consider the whole they view it as a violation of this as enthusiasm or sympathy, or the commandment, to spend so much effect of terror, or a strong excite of the week in attending to religment of the animal feelings, which ious concerns. will soon subside, and produce no By enthusiasm, these persons permanent good effects. And undoubtedly mean a warmth of some do not hesitate to say, it is feeling altogether disproportioned all produced by humau exertion, to the importance of the object in and its subjects are only those of view. They do not consider that weak minds, and such as are easily man chargeable with enthusiasm led away; and they apply to those who pursues an important object who attempt to promote revivals, with great engagedness. When the declaration of the apostle, the state is in danger, they think “For of this sort are they which no efforts too great, to rouse the creep into houses, and lead captive public attention, and to stimulate silly women,” &c. Now, that all every lover of his country to active this may not be true with respect exertion. No warmth of feeling to some of those excitements which which can be manifested on such an are called revivals, I shall not un occasion, appears to them unreadertake to affirm. But that it is soable or enthusiastic. When the true with respect to all, will by no country is invaded, they condema means be admitted. That there no man who neglects his ordinary are some genuine revivals of true concerns, and flies to arms to repel religion, which are produced by the invader. They charge no man the saving operations of the Spirit with enthusiasm, who devotes his of God, is my full belief; and that time, and his talents, and his they are numerous at the present wealth, to save his country from day, I have no doubt. And I think foreign domination. Nay, when a candid attention to the subject much smaller interests are at stake, will convince any one, that the at- these persons
are not over scrupu tempt to account for them on any lous in their regard to the comother principles, must utterly fail. mandment to labour six days and
The opposers of revivals some- rest the seventh. On the eve of times say, it is all enthusiasm; and an election on which they deem in confirmation of it, allege the the interests of their party to de-' warmth of feeling manifested by pend, when the only question is, many on such occasions, the neg- whether this or that set of men lect of their ordinary concerns, for shall enjoy the honours and emoluthe purpose of going from house to ments of office, they do not scruple house, to converse on religious to spend much time and money in subjects; the little interest they securing the object they have in feel in those things which usually view. And if they manifest great engage the attention of men, their warmth of feeling on such an occacontempt of pleasure, and honour, sion, and labour with great zeal and wealth, and their waste of time to secure the ascendancy of their in attending so many religious party, they are very far from meetings; all which appear to them charging themselves with enthusilike the effects of partial derange- asm, or supposing that all who feel
as they do, are under the influence shame and regret, to those seaof mental derangement.
sons in their lives in which they To ascertain, therefore, whether have felt otherwise? But you will the advocates of a revival of relig- say, perhaps, that they are not ion are chargeable with enthusi- proper judges in their own case; asm, we must consider the impor- for enthusiasts and madmen always tance of the object they have in think themselves to be sober and view. To deterinine whether the rational. Who, then, are the prowarmth of feeling they manifest is per judges? Are they those who beyond the bounds of reason, we know nothing of the matter? Are must consider the interests which they those who have never seen are at stake.—The object they have the worth of their own souls, and in view, is the glory of God in the who have never felt their exposedsalvation of souls. The interests Dess to the wrath of God? Are which are at stake, are the eternal they those who are so engaged in well-being of themselves and their the concerns of this world, that fellow men. They believe that they have given no attention the soul is immortal, and capable to the concerns of the next? Are of an endless progression in happi- they those who flatter themselves ness at the right hand of God, or that all are equally safe, and that of misery in the regions of des- no danger is to be apprehended by pair. They believe that all are by any? It is expected that such men Dature children of wrath, and ex- will consider the subject as of no posed to endless perdition, and importance. It is expected that that none but those who are born they will feel no concern for themagain can enter into the kingdom selves or their fellow man, and of heaven. If those who believe that they will regard as weakness thus, manifest deep solicitude for and enthusiasm all the concern for themselves and others, if their them which is manifested by othfeelings are warmly engaged, is It is clear, then, that these their zeal disproportionate to the are not the proper judges in this object? If they are disposed to matter, and that we have a right spend their time and employ their to appeal from their judgment to a wealth in securing the salvation of more impartial tribunal. We ap
. souls, are they to be accounted as peal to the Scriptures of truth. madmen? If, in comparison with We appeal to Him who made the this object, they disregard those soul, and who knows its value. things which engross the attention | We appeal to Him who died on the of other men, and count the pleas- cross, and gave his life a ransom ures and honours of this life as for sinners. We appeal to those nothing worth, do they make a holy apostles and martyrs, who choice which ought to brand them submitted to the loss of all things, with the name of wild enthusiasts that they might win souls. By On a sober review of the subject their judgments we are willing to in their calmer moments, do they abide. When we shall have mancondemn themselves for manifest- ifested more concern for the salvaing too great warmth? Do they not tion of men, than did the Lord Jeuniformly consider themselves as sus in dying to redeem them; when cold, and stupid, and dead, in we shall have shown more ardour comparison with what they ought of feeling on this subject, than that to be, in pursuing an object so un- which brought prophets and aposspeakably interesting and impor- tles to the stake; when we shall tant? Do they not look back, with 'have made greater sacrifices for the
-spread of the gospel, than did Paul | pressions, and appear no bettei and his companions; when we shall | than before, is not denied. But i have done this, we will stand re- it were all sympathy and anima proved, and confess that our zeal feeling, it would all disappear wher has transcended its proper lim- the excitement was past, and no its.
permanent good effects would reBut it is said that those who are main. That soine men are made the advocates of revivals, and the better, is not to be questioned subjects of their operations, are That some of the most proud, and only silly women, and weak-mind- obstinate, and determined opposed men; those who are easily afiect- ers of the religion of the gospel, ed by sympathy, and led away by are changed into meek and humble animal feeling. It is said, that a followers of the Lamb, is fully revival of religion is only a storm susceptible of proof. And this is of the passions, which soon sub- a satisfactory demonstration that sides, and leaves no permanent the work is a divine reality. The good effects. Was Paul a weak- circumstances, too, under which minded man? Was he led away the work often commences, and by sympathy, and actuated by mere the manner in which many are first animal feeling? Did the operation awakened, are such as to preclade of the Spirit of God on his heart the possibility of its being the effect produce no permanent good effects of any human exertion. Revivals And are no similar instances to be often commence, when there had found among the subjects of mod- been no visible alteration in the ern revivals? Are there none who means which are used, no change are men of superior intellect, and in the matter or manner of preachuncommon stability of character, ing, and no increase of exertion who are advocates for revivals, or on the part of the friends of relig. the subjects of them? No one, who ion. Those means which had been is acquainted with the history of used for years, without producing revivals, will venture to assert it. any other visible effect than that of A multitude of instances might be hardening sinners still more, now produced, of men of talents, and operate with resistless energy. learning, and firinness of mind; The same truths which have long men who had been opposed to re- been heard with indifference, now vivals, and who had regarded all carry alarm, and conviction, and pretensions to experimental religion terror, to the most stupid. This as weakness and folly, who have, difference cannot be accounted for nevertheless, become subjects of on the supposition that it is all the the work, and have been made to
work of man. The manner, also, feel the almighty energy of the in which many are first awakened, Spirit of God. These men say is a proof equally conclusive, of they have experienced a change; the operation of a divine agent. and why should we doubt their They have heard the most solemn veracity? Their subsequent lives and affecting declarations of the give evidence of the change; and word of God, from time to time, why should we shut our eyes to so without being in the least alarmed; convincing a proof?
they have been conversed with, in That there is much sympathy private, to no purpose; but now, and much animal feeling in times without any new considerations of revival, is not to be doubted; being presented, without any thing and that those who are merely being said to them, or any particuaffected by these, lose their im- / lar occurrence to call up their ai