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natures. In virtue of the former, he is “the first-born from the dead,"3 whose resurrection is the pledge of ours; and having been tempted in all points like as we are, (though “ without sin,”) he is touched with the feeling of our infirmities.4 In virtue of the latter, he bestows upon his church all spiritual gifts and graces, and with the Father and the Holy Ghost, is the object of religious adoration to the whole rational creation.5
Finally, at the hour appointed in the hidden counsels of the Father, he will come again with great glory to judge the quick and the dead.? Then shall we hail his manhood as essential to his sympathy, and admire the equity of God who has “committed all judgment” unto Jesus, “ because he is the Son of man. Then also will he gloriously display his godhead, by raising the countless multitudes of the dead ; 9 by folding up the earth and heavens as a garment;1 by detecting the secrets of all hearts;? and by rendering to every man according to his deeds.
At that momentous period, according to the Scriptures, the whole economy of redemption will be completed, and the Son will resign bis mediatorial authority to the Father from whom he received it. Yet will he never lose 3 Col. i, 18.
4 Heb. iv, 15. 5 Phil. ii, 10, 11. Heb. i, 6. Rev. v, 12, 13. 6 Matt. xxiv, 36.
7 Matt. xxv, 31. 8 John V, 22, 27. 9 1 Cor. xv, 52. Phil. iii, 21. 1 Heb. i, 12.
2 Rev. ii, 23. 3 1 Cor. xv, 28.
the distinctive character of the Lamb immaculate, 4 and with the Father and the Holy Ghost, he will reign over all” everlastingly, -“God blessed for ever.” 5
Such is the general account given to us in the Bible of the nature, history, and offices of the Saviour of mankind. The passages here cited are both numerous and clear; and to these might easily be added a multitude of others which bear a corresponding and confirming testimony to the same truths.
In adducing this account as an internal evidence of the inspiration of its authors, we may, in the first place, notice its originality. Nothing can be more novel and extraordinary
-nothing more unlike the inventions of man --than the various parts of which it is com posed; and taken as a whole, this delineation of the Deliverer of our fallen race is absolutely singular and unrivalled. Plato indeed entertained some wandering notions respecting “word ” or ” as forming part of the Deity; but who for a moment would compare these notions, with the luminous description given in Scripture of the Word of God, who is the brightness of God's glory, one with Jehovah, bearing his name, participating in his attributes, and therefore truly God?
Again we are aware that gross superstitions respecting incarnate deities distinguish the idolatry of the Hindoos and some other heathen nations; and these superstitions may 4 Rev. xxi, 23, xxii, 1, 3.
5 Rom. ix, 5.
possibly be the hideous and distorted imitations of truth. But where shall we hear of any thing comparable to the union described in Scripture, of perfect humanity and perfect deity, in our Lord Jesus Christma union which although incomprehensible in its mode, is intelligible in its use-essential to all the offices of the Redeemer, and sustained with the even hand of omnipotence, through every stage of God's mighty scheme for the salvation of sinners ?
Secondly, let us observe the completeness and harmony of this account of the Saviour. A multitude of distinct testimonies, given forth in different ages, relating to various points of the subject, and contributed, without any systematic arrangement, by a host of independent writers, are found to coincide with exact precision. Without difficulty they fall into admirable order, and produce a whole which men and angels shall never cease to contemplate with wonder, gratitude, and delight. The book which tells us of these things, and so tells us of them, must needs be the book of God.
ON THE FATHER, THE SON, AND THE SPIRIT
We have already dwelt on the attributes of God the Father, and on those of his only
begotten Son, who is one with him. But the Scriptures make known to us a third divine Agent—the Holy Spirit of truth and righteousness—who illuminates, converts, and purifies the souls of men.
When our Saviour was about to quit this lower world, he commanded his disciples to go and teach all nations, “baptising them into the named of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost;”from which expressions we learn that these servants of God were to baptize their converts into that faith, of which the Father, the Son, and the Spirit are the inseparable objects. Now since it cannot for a moment be imagined that a mere attribute or influence could be presented to us, as a joint object of our faith with the Father and the Son, this passage must be regarded as containing a clear evidence of the personality of the Spirit.
The same doctrine appears to have been adverted to by our Saviour, when he spoke of the Holy Ghost as of one against whom it is unpardonable to blaspheme. Again our Lord repeatedly describes him as the Comforter or Paracletet of his people. " When the Comforter is come, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things."5
It is expedient for you that I go away, for if I go not away
the Com1 εις το όνομα.
2 Matt. xxviii, 19. 3 Matt. xii, 31, 32. παράκλητος, means an advocate, defender, helper, and teacher, as well as cornforter. 5 John xiv, 26.
forter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you, and when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.”. In all these
passages the Spirit is described under a personal title, and as exercising personal attributes. On the same principle, we find that it was the Holy Ghost to whom Ananias and Sapphira lied, and whom they conspired to tempt.7 He it is who said, “ Separate me Barnabas and Saul, for the work whereunto I have called them;" 8 who forbad Paul to preach the word in Asia; to whom it seemed good not to burthen the Gentiles with Jewish ceremonies ;? who divides to every man spiritual gifts according to his will ;? whom we are commanded not to grieve ;3 and to whom our bodies are to be consecrated as a living temple.4
While the Holy Ghost is thus represented to us in Scripture, under a personal character, the attributes ascribed to him, are plainly those of the Deity himself. God is a Spirit. Invisible and spiritual in his nature, he fills his own works; he exercises over them an unseen and powerful influence; he dwells and operates in the hearts of men. Nor can we deny the truth of the converse of such a proposition. The Spirit who fills the works of the Almighty, who exercises over them an unseen, yet powerful influence, who dwells and 6 John xvi, 7, 8.
7 Acts v, 3, 9. 8 Acts xiii, 2.
9 Acts xvi, 6. 1 Acts xv, 28,
2 1 Cor. xii, 8-11. 3 Eph. iv, 30.
4 I Cor. vi, 19.