« ZurückWeiter »
See Isaiah xliii. 3, 10—15, in which verses, we have another clear demonstration of the divinity of Christ. * Trusting is abundantly represented as a principal thing in that peculiar respect due to God alone, as of the essence of divine adoration due to no other than God. And yet, how is Christ represented as the peculiar object of the faith and trust of all God's people, of all nations, as having all-sufficiency for them ? Trusting in any other, is greatly condemned; is a thing, than which nothing is represented as more dangerous, provoking to God, and bringing his curse on man.
§ 5. And how often is being the Redeemer of God's people spoken of as the peculiar character of the mighty God of Jacob, the First and Last, the Lord of Hosts, the only God, the Holy One of Israel? (So Isa. xli. 14. xliii. 14. xliv. 6, 24. xlvii. 4. xlviii. 17. xlix. 7, 26. liv. 5; and lx. 16.) And it may be observed, that when God has this title of the Redeemer of Israel ascribed to him in those places, it is joined with some other of the peculiar and most exalted names and titles of the most high God: such as the Holy One of Israel ; (so Isa. xli. 14. xliii. 14. xlvii. 4. xlviii. 17. xliv. 6. and xlix. 7.) The Mighty one of Jacob, (chap. xlix. 26. and lx. 16.) The Lord of Hosts, (Isa. xlvii. 4. and xliv. 6.) The God of the whole earth, (chap. liv. 5.) The First and the Last, besides whom there is no God, (xliv. 6.) The Jehovah that maketh all things, that stretcheth forth the heavens alone, and spreadeth abroad the earth by himself, (ver. 24.) Yet the Messiah, in this very book, is spoken of as the Redeemer of God's people, in the most eminent manner, (chap. Ixii, 1–6.)
$ 6. God is careful that his people should understand, that their honour, and love, and praise, for the redemption out of Egypt, belongs only to him, and, therefore, is careful to inform them, that he alone redeemed them out of Egypt, and that there was no other God with him; and to make use of that as a principal argument why they should have no other gods before him. (See Deut. xxxii. 12; Exod. xx. 3; Psal. Ixxxi. 8, 9, 10; Hos. xii. 4.) The words in that place are remarkable : “ Yet I am the Lord thy God from the land of Egypt; and thou shalt know no God but me; for there is no Saviour besides me." If God insisted on that as a good reason why his people should know no God besides him, that he alone was their Saviour to save them out of Egypt; would he afterward appoint another to be their Saviour, in an infinitely greater salvation ?
§ 7. The works of creation being ascribed to Christ, most evidently prove his proper divinity. For God declares, that he is Jehovah that stretcheth forth the heavens alone, and spread.
* See, also, Hosea viji, 4. See, also, Isaiah xlix. 26. and Ix. 16. Deut. xxxiii. 29. Jer, iii. 23. Jonah ii. 8, 9. Psalm iii. 8. Isa. xxv. 9.
eth abroad the earth by himself, Isa. xliv. 24. (See also the next chapter, xlv. 5—6, 12.) And not only is the creation of the world ascribed to Christ often in scripture, but that which in Isaiah is called the new creation, which is here represented as an immensely greater and more glorious work than the old creation, viz. the work of redemption, as this prophet himself explains it, (Isa. Ixv. 17, 18, 19.) is every where in a most peculiar and distinguishing manner, ascribed to Christ. 2 Peter i. I. “ Through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ ::? Εν δικαιοσυνη του Θες ημων και σωτηρος Ιησου Χριστου. Tit. ii. 13. “ Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of the great God, and our Saviour Jesus Christ ;" To usyans Ex και σωτηρος ημών Ιησε Χρις8. It is agreeable to the manner of the apostle's expressing himself in both places, to intend one and the same person, viz. Christ, under two titles: As when speaking of God the Father, in Eph. i. 3. “Blessed be the God and
" Father of our Lord Jesus Christ."
ο Θεος και πατης.
See Dr. Goodwin's works, vol. i. p. 93, 94.
$ 8. That passage in Isaiah xl. 13 14. “Who hath directed the spirit of the Lord?” proves Christ's divinity; for Christ directs the spirit of the Lord. See John xvi. 13—15, and many other places. Compare the following texts, set in opposite columns; those in the first column are represented as belonging to God only, which yet in the second column, are given to Christ.
1 Kings viï. 39.
John ïi. 24. xvi. 30. Acts i. 24.
Exod. xx. 3.
Heb. i. 6. Matt. iv. 10. and Gal, iv. 8. John v. 23.* $ 9. If Christ in the beginning created the heavens and the earth, he must be from eternity; for then he is before the be. ginning, by which must be meant, the beginning of time; the beginning of that kind of duration which has beginning and following, before and after, belonging to it. The beginning of created existence, or, the beginning of the creation which God created, as the phrase is, Mark iii. 19. In Proverbs viji. 22, it is said, “ The Lord possessed me before his works of old;" and therefore before those works which in Genesis i, 1. are said to be made in the beginning. God's eternity is expressed thus, Psalm xc. 2. “ Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst created the earth and the world, even from everlasting." So it is said, Prov. viii. 22, &c. “ The Lord possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old. I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the carth was,” &c.
§ 10. That the kingdom of the Messiah is so commonly called the kingdom of heaven, is an evidence that the Messiah is God. By the kingdom of heaven is plainly meant a kingdom wherein God doth reign, or is King. The phrase, the kingdom of heaven, seems to be principally taken from Dan. ii. 14. “ And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdomn;" where the meaning plainly is, after the heads of those four great monarchies have each one had their turn, and erected kingdoms for themselves in their turn, and the last monarchy shall be divided among ten kings; finally, the God of heaven shall take the dominion from them all, and shall set up a kingdom for himself. He shall take the kingdom and shall rule for ever. In this book, chap. iv. 26. it is said, “ After that thou shalt have known that the heavens do rule.” The words in the foregoing verse express what is meant: “Until thou know that the Most High ruleth in the kingdom of men." Therefore, by the kingdom of heaven which shall be set up, is
* See WATERLAND's answer to some queries.
meant the kingdom wherein God himself shall be the king; not as reigning and administering by other kings or judges, as he was king in the time of the Judges, and in the time of David and Solomon, Hezekiah and Josiah, &c., and as he always doth in the time of good kings: but he shall set up his king. dom, in distinction from all kingdoms or states, wherein the heavens shall rule, or God himself shall be king. And, therefore, the kingdom of heaven is often called the kingdom of God, in the New Testament. And it is abundantly prophesied in the Old Testament, that in the days of the Messiah, God shall take to himself the kingdom, and shall reign as king, in contradistinction to other reigning subordinate beings. And that God himself shall reign on earth, as king among his people, is abundantly manifest from many prophecies.* And in this very prophecy of Daniel, (chap. vii.) where this kingdom, which the Lord of heaven should at last set up (plainly this same kingdom,) is more fully spoken of, it is manifest, that the Messiah is to be the king in that kingdom, who shall reign as vested with full power, and complete kingly authority.f
§ 11. God is several times called in scripture, the Glory of Israel, or of God's people ; and it is a title peculiar to him, wherein he appears as especially distinguished from false gods. Jer. ï. 11. "Hath a nation changed their gods, which yet are
ii no gods? but my people have changed their glory for that which doth not profit." Psalm cvi. 20. “ Thus they changed their glory into the similitude of an ox that eateth grass.' But we find that Christ, in the New Testament, is spoken of
"the glory of God's people Israel.” Luke ii. 23.
§ 12. What is said in Job xix. 25–27. - For I know that my Redeemer liveth," &c., is a proof of the divinity of Christ. For here, he whom Job calls his Redeemer, his God, is God; " Yet in my flesh shall I see God." But it is very manifest, that Christ is he who is most properly and eminently our Redeemer, or God: And here Job says, that God shall stand at the latter day, at the general resurrection on the earth ; when he shall see him in his flesh. But the person that shall then stand on the earth, we know, is no other than Jesus Christ. And how often, in other places, both in the Old Testament and the New, is Christ's coming to judgment, spoken of as God's coming to judgment ? Christ's appearing, as God's appearing ? and our standing before the judgment-seat of Christ, as our standing before God's judgment seat?
* See Psalm xciii. 1. xcvi. 10. xcvii. at the beginning, and xcix. 1. Isa. xxxiii. 22. Isa. xl. 9, 10, 11. Zeph. iii. 14, 15. Mal. iii. 1, 2, 3.
+ See, also, Dan. ix. 25. Gen. xlix. Psalms ii. cx. Ixxxix. and xlv, Isaiah ix. and si. Zech. vi. Jer. xxii. 5. XXX. 9. and xxxiii. 15. Ezek. xxxiv. 23. and xxxvij. 24. Hos, iii, 5. Zech. vi. 12, &c., and in many other places.
$ 13. Luke i. 16, 17. “ And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God; and he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of fathers to the children, and of the disobedient to the wisdom of the just ; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord." Here John the Baptist is spoken of as going before the Lord, the God of the children of Israel, to prepare his way; agreeably to the prophecies; particularly, Mal. iii. 1. and iv. 5, 6. But who is this person who is called the Lord, the God of Israel, whose forerunner, John the Baptist, is to prepare his way? Nothing is more manifest, than that it is Jesus Christ. See Mark i. 1-3. “ The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God: as it is written in the prophets, Behold, 1 send my messenger before thy face, who shall prepare thy way before thee. The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight," (alluding to two prophecies, viz. Mal. iii. 1. and Isaiah xi. 3.) Here is a distinction of two persons; the one speaking in the first person singular, “ Behold, I send my messenger ;” the other spoken to in the second person, “ before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee;" which makes it evident, that the person spoken of, and whose forerunner he was, to prepare his way, was Jesus Christ. .
So Matt. xi. 10. Luke vii. 27. See, also, how manifest this is by John i, 19. “ And this is the record of John." Verse 23. "I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias ;" with the following verses, especially verse 31 : “ And I knew him not, but that he should be made manifest to Israel : therefore, am I come baptizing with water." So that it is evident, that Christ is he, that, in the first of Luke is called the Lord, or Jehovah, the God of Israel, as the phrase is in the original of the Old Testament, in places from whence this phrase is taken. Therefore, it is evident, that Christ is one God with the Father ; for the scripture is very express, that Jehovah, the God of Israel, is but one Jehovah; as Deut. vi. 4. “Hear, O Israel, Jehovah our God is one Jehovah.'
§ 14. And, if we look into those prophecies of the Old Testament, referred to in these places of the evangelists, it is manifest, that what they foretel, concerns a forerunner to prepare the way for the only true and supreme God; as, Isa. xi. 3. “ The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of Jehovah; make straight in the desert a high way for our God.” This is evidently the same that is spoken of in the following parts of the chapter ; as in verse 9, and following verses: " Say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God; behold, Jehovah God will come. He shall feed his flock like a shepherd. Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of Vol. VII.