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and the Offspring of David.” It is thus revealed, that these infinitely dissimular natures are united in the Person of Christ, and are both comprised in the pronoun I, in this text. But the mode, in which these two natures unite, to constitute one Person, is a secret thing, which belongeth to God. Hence to attempt an explanation of it, would, in my opinion, be both presumption and impiety. And I shall never feel myself pressed with any argument, urged from the difficulties, which may seem to attend the union of those two natures in one Person, any more than with the question, how can God exist eternally, or independently? Or, “ How can these things be 2"
The Godhead consists of a Trinity in Unity.
It has already been ascertained, that there are tuo in the Godhead, of equal Divinity; God and Christ, represented as tuo ; yet essentially one. But if there are two, in the sense explained'; no difficulty is increased by supposing there are three in the Godhead. In this point of light, I shall consider all the arguments, adduced in favor of the real De
It is a
ity of Christ, and of his distinction from, and yet union with the Father, as fully in point, to prove the doctrine of the Trinity. The business of this section therefore, I shall view as in a great measure accomplished, by that of the section on the real Divinity of Jesus Christ. I shall here rest on every argument there adduced, as directly in point.
The doctrine of a Trinity in Unity in the Godhead, rests solely on divine Revelation. The light of nature teaches nothing in favor of it ; and it can teach nothing against it. This is a doctrine above our reason; and above all that we can ascertain from the analogy of creatures. But this doctrine cannot be pronounced contrary to reason. mystery, but can never be shown to be an absurdity, that there should be in some sense three in one undivided Godhead. It is not pretended that there are in God three in the same sense, in which there is one ; nor one in the same sense, in which there are three. But there are in some important sense three ; yet in another important sense, the three are one.
Trinitarians have often enough given notice, that the term persons, as understood when applied to men, fails of fully answering to the Three in the Godhead. That the term is adopted, because they can find no better. But that they do not suppose the Three Persons in the Godhead to be so perfectly distinct from each other, as are different persons among men.
That in some
important sense they are distinet from each other; while yet they are really one. May this ever be remembered, when the term persons is applied to the Three in the Godhead.
The Bible throughout does teach, that there is something in the mode of the divine existence, which lays a foundation for the one God to speak of himself as 1, thou, and he. These Three have different names, like three persons; while equal works, names, and honors of pure Divinity are abundantly aseribed to each. This fact appears upon the face of the Bible, of the Old and New Testaments. If it appeared in but one, or even several solitary passages, it might possibly be said to be a figurative speech; and the Trinitarian sentiment might fail of support. But the sentiment is found throughout the sacred book.
The scriptures, which indicate a plurality in the Godhead, though the number three be not noted, I shall adduce as fully in point to prove the doctrine of the Trinity. We find a plurality in God in the beginning of Genesis. We find the same in the last chapter of the Revelation. And we find it all the way through the sacred volume. The whole economy of grace is represented as resting in the hands of these three Persons, in mutual concert; one covenanting with the other ; and each having his stipulated part in the vast design of man's salvation. These different Persons speak to, and of each other, as of different Persons ; ascribing to them.
selves, and to each other, the names and works of God. And yet they often assert, or teach, that there is but one God.
6 The Lord thy God is one. God." 66 Thou shalt have no other gods before me."
66 Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.” Here is perfect Unity in the Three.
I shall now adduce some arguments iu favor of this plurality in the Godhead, and of the doctrine of the Trinity. The word Aleim, or Elohim, in Hebrew, translated God, is in the plural. “In the beginning Gods created the heavens and the earth." And notwithstanding all that Jews, Arians, Socinians, and infidels say to the contrary, I am far from being convinced, that this plurality in the name of God, does not indicate & plurality of Persons in the Godhead. Jew. ish converts (having given up their enmity against the Divinity of Jesus of Nazareth) have viewed this plural word a forcible argument in favor of the doctrine of the Trinity. John Xerese, a Jewish convert in Brit. ain, wrote an excellent address to his countrymen, upon this subject. And in his first argument in favor of the Trinity, he says; “Why else is the frequent mention of God, by names of the plural number? as Gen. i. 1, where the word Elohim, which is rendered God, is of the plural number, though annexed to a verb of the singular number ; which demonstrates, as far as may be, that there are several Persons partaking of the same
divine nature, or essence."* And much we find, that accords with this idea. "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” “The man is become as one of us, to know good and evil.” Pass on, to different parts of the Bible, you abundantly find the same. “Let us go down, and confound their language."
66 And the Lord God said, “Whom shall I send, and who will go
for us?” What a changing of persons is here found from I, to us! as in the beginning of Genesis ; “ Let us make man." “ I have given you every herb.” The sin. gular, and the plural are thus used interchangeably. There is Unity, as well as Trinity, and Trinity, as well as Unity, in God. This appears, in that verbs, pronouns, and relatives, united to plural nouns of the name of God, are found in the singular number. On the contrary, verbs and adjectives relating to God are often found in the plural. As Gen. xx. 13; “ And it came to pass when God caused me to wander from my father's house." In the Hebrew the verb rendered caused, is in the plural. When God they caused me to wander.f And such instances are declared by ancient critical writers to relate to the mysterious Trinity. Gen. xxv. 7, “Because there God appeared unto him;" the word rendered appeared, in the original is plural ;-God they appeared, or were revealed. 2 Sam. vii. 23; “ Israel, whom God went to redeem.” The verb here ren.
* Con. Mag. vol. III. p. 24. + See Jones, page 87.