Imagini ale paginilor

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 composed; 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 “reason” 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 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 Christ - a 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 band 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 procision. 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,





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, “baptizing them into the name 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 doctrinę 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 Paraclete 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. It is expedient for you that I go away, for if I go not away the Comforter 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. He it is who said,

Separate me Barnabas and Saul, for the work whereunto I have called them;" who forbade 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 ; and to whom our bodies are to be consecrated as a living temple.

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 operates in the hearts of men, is God.

“ The Lord is that Spirit.” The union of the Father, the Son, and the Spirit in the work of Creation, is conspicuously marked in the book of Genesis as compared with the declarations of the New Testament. When God, the Father, spake and it was done —when he said, “Let there be light," and there was light,- he created by his Word. And at the same time, 'the Spirit of God moved on the face of the waters." It was therefore in his true and appropriate character that Jehovah spake when he said, make man in our image, after our likeness."* The same union in the work of Redemption

66 Let Us


« ÎnapoiContinuați »