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he had made a man whole on the sabbath day. By way of apology, he says, ver. 17. “ My Father worketh hitherto,”that is, in the course of his providence, on the sabbath as well as on other days, " and I work ;' that is, on the sabbath day also. Upon this the pharisees were more enraged, “ because he called Gud his Father, and because he made himself” (not“equal with God," as we render it) but like unto God, assuming so much of his prerogative, as to claim the privilege of working on the sabbath day as well as God. However, to show them that he meant nothing arrogant in what he had said, and that this privilege was given to him by God, he immediately replies, ver. 19. “Verily verily I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do; for what things soever he doth, these also doth the son likewise.” He then proceeds to represent all his extraordinary power as the gift of his Falber: ver. 20. “For the Father loveth the son, and showeth him all things that himself doeth ; and he will show him greater things than these, that ye may marvel. For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them, even so the son quickeneth whom he will. For the Father judgeth no man, but hath commirted all judgement unto the son, that all men should honour the son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the son, honoureth not the Father who hath sent him.” Indeed, this very last clause şufficiently shows that the honour to which Christ is entitled is not on account of what he is, or has, of kimself, but on account of what he derives from God, as his ambassador.
JI. Very high titles are justly given to Christ as the founder of the christian religion, and especially as superintending the affairs of his church, and as controlling whatever can affect the interest of his church. Thus the author of the epistle to the Hebrews styles him “the author and finisher of our faith.” Heb. xij. 2. He is also said to be ihe.“head over all things to his church,” Eph. i. 2. These high titles are attribuied to Jesus with respect to the state of glory, and universal dominion, to which he is exalted by the Father. · The author of the epistle to the Hebrews makes use of a phrase of the same import with this of the apostle John, where he only means to express the unchangeableness of the doctrine of Christ, as the connection of it, with what goes before and after, makes very evident. Heb. xiii. 7. “ Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God, whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation, Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today, and for ever. Be not carried away with diverse and, strange doctrines.” The whole is intended to inculcate á steadfast adherence to the genuine doctrine of Jesus Christ.
It is plain, from many passages in the book of Rę. velation, that the author of it considered Christ as a person subordinate to the Father, and the minister of his will, and therefore no single expression should be interpreted in such a manner as to make it imply the contrary. The very first words of the book sufficiently express this. - The revelation of Jesus Christ, which
God gave unto him.” Ver. 6. “Who has made us kings and priests unto God and (or rather even). his Father.” i. 26. “And he that overcomneth, and, keepeth my words unto the end, to him will I give. power over the nations- even as I received of my Father.” 11. 12. “Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out, and I will write upon hin the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God.” Ver. 21. “To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcaine, and am set down with my Father in his throne.” Further, this writer, evidently speaking of Christ in his highest capacity, uses the following expressions : ver. 14. “ These things saith the Ameu, the faithful and true wiiness, the beginning (or the most excellent) of the creation of God;" which plainly implies that, how excellent soever he may be, he is but a creature.
Matt. xxviii. 29. “ And lo I am with you always, even to the end of the world.” Christ, who is constituted head over all things to his church, undoubtedly takes care of its interests, and attends to whatever concerns his disciples; and being with a person, and taking care of him, are, in the language of scripture, equivalent expressions. S'e Gen. xxi. 20, 22. xxviii. 15, xxxix 2. Besides, Christ, having a near relation to this earth, may even be personally present with his disciples when they litile think of it. But it is by no
means necessary that he be personally present every where at the same time; since God may communicate to him a power of knowing distant events, of wbich he appeared to be possessed when Lazarus was sick. This is certainly no greater a power than God may communicate to any of his creatures.
Another passage which seems to suppose the omnipresence of Christ is, Matt. xviii. 23. “ For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” But if we consider the whole of this passage, in which our Lord is speaking of the great power of which his apostles would be possessed, and especially of the efficacy of their prayers, we shall be satisfied, that he could only mean by this form of expression to represent their power with God, when they were assembled as his disciples, and prayed so as became his disciples, to be the same as his own power with God; and God heard him always. That our Lord could not intend to speak of himself as the God who heareth prayer, is evident from his speaking of the Father, in this very place, as the person who was to grant their petitions, ver. 19. “ Again I say unto you, that if iwo of you shall agree on earth, as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father who is in heaven.” .
lll. Considering the great power with which Christ was invested on earth, and inore especially the autority to which he is exalted now that he is in heaven, it is certainly right that a very high degree of respect should be paid to him ; and from the manner in which
this is expressed, and especially because the word wor. ship is made use of on those occasions, in our English translation, some persons have been confirmed in their opinion, that he is the proper object of supreme or divine worship, and is therefore truly and properly God; but any person who will consider the real import of the following passages must see that they afford no foundation for such a conclusion.
Heb. i. 6. “When God bringeth in the first-begot. ten into the world, he saith, Let all the angels of God worship him.” Also the leper, Matt. viii. 2. the ruler, Matt. ix. 18. the woman of Canaan, Matt. xv. 25. the poor people in the ship, Matt. xiv. 33. and his disciples, Matt. xxviii. 9.-..-17. are all said to have worshipped him. But the very circumstances in which this worship was paid to Christ sufficiently prove that divine worship was not intended ; because it is well known that the Jews had no expectation of any other person than a man for their Messiah ; and when Nico. demus was convinced of the miraculous power of Jesus, he concluded, not that he was God, but that he must have been “impowered by God;" for he says, Johnni. 2. - Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come froin God; for no inan can do these nuiracles that thou doest, excepi God be with bim.” Besides, it is well known that the Greek word, which in the above-menirioned passages is rendered worship, is frequently used to express a very high degree of respect; but such as may be lawfully paid to men of a proper character and rank. And indeed our word worship, though it is now