« ZurückWeiter »
death of the last apostle, the emperors of the world gave their names to Christ, and submitted their sceptres to his laws, that the “Gentiles might come to his light, and kings to the brightness of his rising ;” (Isa. Ix. 3.) that “ kings might become the nursing fathers, and queens the nursing mothers,” of the Church. (Isa. xlix. 23.)
From hence it came to pass, that according to all the predictions of the prophets, the one God of Israel, the Maker of heaven and earth, was acknowledged through the world for the only true God: that the Law given to Israel was taken for the true Law of God, but as given to that people, and so to cease when they ceased to be a people; except the moral part thereof, which, as a universal rule common to all people, is still acknowledged for the Law of God, given unto all, and obliging every man: that all the oracles of the heathen gods, in all places where Christianity was received, did presently cease, and all the idols or the gods themselves were rejected and condemned as spurious. For the Lord of Hosts had spoken concerning those times expressly," it shall come to pass in that day, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered : also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land." (Zech. xiii. 2.)
Now being this general reception of the Gospel was so anciently, so frequently foretold, being the same was so clearly and universally performed; even this might seem sufficient to persuade that Jesus is Christ. · But lest any should not yet be fully satisfied, we shall farther shew, that it is impossible Jesus should have been so received for the true Messias,. had he not been so; or that his doctrine, which teacheth him to be the Christ, should be admitted by all nations for divine, had it not been such. For whether we look upon the nature of the doctrine taught, the condition of the teachers of it, or the manner in which it was taught, it can no way seem probable, that it should have had any such success, without the immediate working of the hand of God, acknowledging Jesus for his Son, the doctrine for his own, and the fulfilling by the hands of the apostles what he had foretold by the prophets.
As for the nature of the doctrine, it was no way likely to have any such success. For, first, it absolutely condemned all other religions, settled and corroborated by a constant succession of many ages, under which many nations and kingdoms, and especially at that time the Roman, had signally flourished. Secondly, it contained precepts far more ungrateful and troublesome to flesh and blood, and contrariant to the general inclination of mankind; as the abnegation of autem et hi qui in regali aula sunt habent, unusquisque secundum suam fideles? nonne ex eis, quæ Cæsaris virtutem præstat? sunt, habent utensilia, et his, qui non
ourselves, the mortifying of the flesh, the love of our enemies, and the bearing of the cross. Thirdly, it enforced those precepts seemingly unreasonable, by such promises as were seemingly incredible and ünperceivable. For they were not of the good things of this world, or such as afford any complacency to our sense; but of such as cannot be obtained till after this life, and necessarily presuppose that which then seemed as absolutely impossible, the resurrection. Fourthly, it delivered certain predictions which were to be fulfilled in the persons of such as should embrace it, which seem sufficient to have kept most part of the world from listening to it, às dangers, losses, afflictions, tribulations; and, in sum,
- all that would live godly in Christ Jesus should suffer persecution.” (2 Tim. iii. 12.)
If we look upon the teachers of this doctrine, there appeared nothing in them which could promise any success. The first revealer and promulger bred in the house of a carpenter, brought up at the feet of no professor, despised by the highpriests, the Scribes and Pharisees, and all the learned in the religion of his nation; in the time of his preaching apprehended, bound, buffetted, spit upon, condemned, crucified; betrayed in his life by one disciple, denied by another; at his death distrusted by all. What advantage can we perceive towards the propagation of the Gospel in this author of it, “ Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling-block, and unto the Greeks foolishness?" (1 Cor. i. 23.) What in those which followed him, sent by him, and thence called apostles, men by birth obscure, by education illiterate, by profession low and inglorious? How can we conceive that all the schools and universities of the world should give way to them, and the kingdoms and empires should at last come in to them, except their doctrine were indeed divine, except that Jesus, whom they testified to be the Christ, were truly so?
If we consider the manner in which they delivered this doctrine to the world, it will add no advantage to their persons, or advance the probability of success. For in their delivery they used no such rhetorical expressions, or ornaments of eloquence, to allure or entice the world; they affected no súch subtilty of wit, or strength of argumentation, as thereby to persuade or convince men; they made use of no force or violence to compel, no corporal menaces to affright mankind unto a compliance. But in a plain simplicity of words they nakedly delivered what they had seen and heard,“ preaching, not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in the demonstration of the Spirit.” (1 Cor. ii. 4.) It is not then rationally imaginable, that so many nations should forsake their own religions so many ages professed, and brand them all as damnable, only that they might embrace such precepts as were most unacceptable to their natural inclinations, and that upon such promises as seemed not probable to their reason, nor could
have any influence on their sense, and notwithstanding those predictions which did assure them, upon the receiving of that doctrine, to be exposed to all kind of misery: that they should do this upon the authority of him who for the same was.condemned and crucified, and by the persuasion of them who were both illiterate and obscure: that they should be enticed with words without eloquence, convinced without the least subtilty, constrained without any force. I say, it is no .way imaginable how this should come to pass, had not the doctrine of the Gospel, which did thus prevail, been certainly divine ; had not the light of the Word, which thus dispelled the clouds of all former religions, come from heaven; had not that " Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith,” (Heb. xii. 2.) been the true Messias.
To conclude this discourse. He who was in the world at the time when the Messias was to come, and no other at that time or since pretended; he who was born of the same family, in the same place, after the same manner, which the prophets foretold of the birth of the Messias; he which taught all those truths, wrought all those miracles, suffered all those indignities, received all that glory, which the Messias was to teach, do, suffer, and receive; he whose doctrine was received in all nations, according to the character of the Messias : he was certainly the true Messias. But we have already sufficiently shewed that all these things are exactly fulfilled in Jesus, and in him alone. We must therefore acknowledge and profess, that this Jesus is the promised Messias, that is, the Christ.
Having thus manifested the truth of this proposition, Jesus is the Christ, and shewed the interpretation of the word Christ to be anointed: we find it yet necessary, for the explication of this Article,* to inquire what was the end or immediate effect of his unction, and how or in what manner he was anointed to that end.
For the first, as the Messias was foretold, so was he typified : nor were the actions prescribed under the Law less predictive than the words of the prophets. Nay,t whosoever were then anointed, were therefore so, because he was to be anointed. Now it is evident, that among the Jews they were wont to anoint those which were appointed as kings over them :f so “Samuel said unto Saul, The Lord sent me to anoint thee to be king over his people, over Israel.” (1 Sam. xv. 1.) When Saul was rejected, and David produced before Samuel, “ the Lord said, Arise, anoint him, for this is he.”
* "In Christi nomine subauditur qui Tryph. p. 313. unxit, et ipse qui unctus est, et ipsa I. Christus a chrismate dicitur : unctio in qua unctus est.' Iren. I. iii. quia sicut antiqui reges a sacerdoc. 20.
tibus oleo sacro profundebantur, sic * Οι βασιλείς πάντες και οι χριστοι Christus Spiritus Sancti infusione årò toúrov petto Xov xai Baoileis kalcī- repletus est.' Auctor Serm. 131. de @far xai xpioroi. Just. Mart. Dial. cum Temp. ;
(1 Sam. xvi. 12.) And some may have contented themselves with this,* that the Messias was to be a king. But not only the kings, but beside and long before them, the high-priests were also anointed; insomuch as the anointed,t in their common language, signified their high-priest. And because these two were most constantly anointed, therefore divers have thought it sufficient to assert, that the Messias was to be a king and a priest. I But being not only the high-priests and kings were actually anointed (though they principally and most frequently); for “ the Lord said unto Elias, Go anoint Hazael to be king over Syria, and Jehu the son of Nimshi shalt thou anoint to be king over Israel, and Elisha the son of Shaphat shalt thou anoint to be prophet in thy room:" (1 Kings. xix. 15, 16.) Therefore hence it hath been concluded that the three offices of prophet, priest, and king, belonged to Jesus as the Christ, § and that upon good reason. For the commonwealth of Israel was totally ordered and disposed, both in the constitution and administration of it, for and with respect unto the Messias. The constitution of that people was made by a sejunction and separation of them from all other nations on the earth : and this began in Abraham, with a peculiar pro
נמשחו כל הבאים אחריהם להיות -Sicut nunc Romanis indumen • כהנים ולוה לא הוצרכו למשוח :tum purpuram insigne est regiae digni
tatis assumptæ : sic illis unctio sacri:59727072 X 1X Levi Ben Gere unguenti nomen ac potestatem regiam son, 1 Kings i. conferebat.' Lactan. I. iv. c. 7.
| As Lactantius: ‘Erat Judæis ante † For though at the first the sons of præceptum, ut sacrum conficerent Aaron were anointed as well as Aaron, unguentum, quo perungi possent ii
, as appears, Exod. xl. 15. “Thou shalt qui vocabantur ad sacerdotium vel ad anoint them as thou didst anoint their reynum.' l. iv. c. 7. And St. Augustin: father, that they may administer to me · Prioribus Veteris Testamenti tempoin the priest's office :” yet they were ribus ad duas solas personas pertinuit not after anointed, but the successors unctio.' Enarr. 2. Psal. xxvi. §. 2. of Aaron only: for, saith the text, Christus vel Pontificale vel Regium " Their anointing shall surely be an nomen est. Nam prius et Pontifices everlasting priesthood throughout unguento chrismatis consecrabantur, their generations:” and, therefore, af- et Reges. Ruff. in Symb. §. 8. ter this first anointing they shall need
και Τούτο το χρίσμα μή μόνον 'Αρχιεno more, only the successors in the ρεύσι παραδοθήναι, αλλά και τους μετά high-priesthood shall reiterate the ταύτα προφήταις και βασιλεύσιν, οίς και αnction: from whence the priest that αυτούς τούτω χρίεσθαι μόνον εξόν ήν τω is anointed afterwards signified the púpu. Euseb. Demonst. Evang. I. iv. high-priest, as Lev. iv. 3. 9727 c. 15. and Hist. I. i. c. 3. Wherefore TWIN LXX. ò åpxlepkus Ó kexploué- St. Augustin, recollecting a place, in vos, by way of explication; whereas, his eighty-three questions, in which verses the 5th and 16th of the same he had taught the two fishes in the chapter, and vi. 22. they render it by Gospel,“ duas illas personas significare a bare translation, ò lepeus o Xplorós: quibus populus ille regebatur, ut per which by the vulgar Latin is trans- eas conciliorum moderamen acciperet, lated, Sacerdos qui jure patri succede. regiam scilicet et sacerdotalem, ad ret, because no other but the son, quas etiam sacrosancta illa unctio perwhich sueceeded the father in the of- tinebat,' makes this particular retracfice of the high-priest, was afterwards tation : Dicendum potius fuit, maanointed: as the Arabic, Et similiter cime pertinebat, quoniam unctos alisacerdos successor de filiis suis. For in quando legimus et prophetas.” Rethe anointing of Aaron and his sons, tract. 1. i. Č. 26.
mise of a seed in whom all the nations should be blessed, and be united into one religion. That promised seed was the Messias, the type of whom was Isaac. This separation was continued by the administration of that commonwealth, which was “a royal priesthood:"(1 Pet. ii.9.) and that administration of the people did consist in three functions, prophetical, regal, sacerdotal; all which had respect unto the Messias, * as the scope of all the prophets, and the complement of their prophecies, as the Lord of the Temple, and the end of all the sacrifices for which the Temple was erected, as the heir of an eternal priesthood " after the order of Melchizedek,” (Psal. cx. 4.) and of the throne of David, or an everlasting kingdom. Being then the separation was to cease at the coming of the Messias, being that could not cease so long as the administration of that people stood, being that administration did consist in those three functions, it followeth that those three were to be united in the person of the Messias, who was to make all one, and consequently, that the Christ was to be Prophet, Priest, and King.
Again, the redemption or salvation which the Messias was to bring, consisteth in the freeing of a sinner from the state of sin and eternal death, into a state of righteousness and eternal life. Now a freedom from sin in respect of the guilt could not be wrought without a sacrifice propitiatory, and therefore there was a necessity of a priest; a freedom from sin in respect of the dominion could not be obtained without a revelation
of the will of God, and of his wrath against all ungodliness, therefore there was also need of a prophet; a translation from the state of death into eternal life is not to be effected without absolute; authority and irresistible power, therefore a king was also necessary. The Messias, then, the Redeemer of Israel, was certainly anointed for that end, that he might become Pro. phet, Priest, and King. And if we believe him whom we call Jesus, that is, our Saviour and Redeemer, to be Christ, we must assert him by his unction sent to perform all these three offices,
That Jesus was anointed to the prophetical office, though we need no more to prove it than the prediction of Isaiah, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor;” (Isa. Ixi. 1.) the explication of our Saviour, “ This day is the Scripture fulfilled in
• Ου μόνους δε άρα τους αρχιερωσύνη προφητών τινάς διά χρίσματος χριστους τετιμημένους το τού χριστού κατεκόσμει εν τύπω γεγονέναι παρειλήφαμεν. ώς παρ' Εβραίοις όνομα αλλά και τους βα- τούτους απαντας την επι τον αληθή σιλέας, ους και αυτούς, πνεύματι θεία Χριστόν, τον ένθεον και ουράνιον λόγον, προφήται χρίoντες, εικονικούς τινας χρι- αναφοράν έχειν, μόνον αρχιερέα των στους άπειργάζοντο ότι δή και αυτοί, της όλων, και μόνον απάσης της κτίσεώς βατου μόνου και αληθούς Χριστού, τού κατά σιλέα, και μόνον προφητών άρχιπροφήπάντων βασιλεύοντος θείου λόγου, βασι- την του πατρός τυγχάνονται Euseb. λικής και αρχικής εξουσίας τους τύπους Ηist. Eccl. 1. i. c. 3. δι' εαυτών έφερον ήδη δε και αυτών των