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appropriated to that worship which is due to God only, was formerly used with greater latitude, and even in our translation of the Bible ; as when a servant, in one of our Saviour's parables, is said to have fallen down and worshipped his master, saying, “ Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all :” where certainly divine worship could not be neant. It is also an evi.. dence of this use of the word, that in our marriage service the man is directed to say to the woman, « With my body I thee worship;" and the terms worskip and worshipful are still applied to several of our magistrates and bodies of men.
Also, in the Greek translation of the Old Testa.. ment, the same word that we render worship in the New is frequently used where supreme worship could not be intended. Otherwise Abraham must be supposed to have intended to pay supreme worship to the angels, when he took them to be men ; and to the sons of Heth, when he was making a bargain with them for a piece of ground to bury his dead..
IV. Arguments have been brought to prove the divinity of Christ from the names and titles, which are given to him, as well as from the powers ascribed to him, and the worship that is paid 10 him; but if we consider the proper meaning of other scripture names, and the occasions on which they were conferred, we must be satisfied, that very little stress is to be laid on such an argument as this.
Isaiah vii. 14.“ Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his naine Emmanuel.” Mati,
. j. 23,
i. 23. « Behold; a virgin shall be with child, and bear a son, and shall call his name Enmanuel, which is, being interpreted, God with us." These texts have been thought to imply that Christ is a compound being, or that he is God incarnate; but if we consider other instances of names imposed by the divine direction in the scriptures, we shall find that they do not always express any thing characteristic of the person on whom they are imposed, but that they were intended to be a memorial of some divine promise or assurance respecting things of a public and general concern. Thus the prophet Isaiah, vii. 1, &c. was directed to call his son Shear Jashub, which signifies a remnant shall return, to express to the Jews, that only a small number of their enemies should return from the invasion with which they then threatened them, or that a number of their own people who had been carried captive should relurn. Another child he was directed to call Maher, shalalhashbuz, on a similar account; and of Jerusalem it is said, “ This is the naine wherewith she shall be called, the Lord our righteousness,” to express that God would appear in that character to his people. In like manner the Divine Being, admitting that he appointed Christ to be called Emmanutby might do it to engage, to manifest his own presence with his people, by protecting and blessing them, and inflicting vengeance on their enemies and oppressors. For this prediction was given upon the occasion of an invasion by the Israelites and Syrians. Isaiah ix. 6. “ Unto us a child is born, unto us a
son is given, and the governmeut shall be upon his shoulder; and his name shall be called wonderful, counsellor, the mighty God, the everlasting father, the prince of peace.” In this, as in the former case, these titles may not express what Christ is, but what God will manifest hiniself to be in him, and by him; so that, in the dispensation of the gospel, God, the wise and benevolent author of it, will appear to be a wonderful counsellor, the everlasting father, and the prince of peace. If this name he supposed to characterize Christ himself, it will by no means favour the common doctrine of the Trinity; because it will make him to be the Father, or the first person, and not the Son, or the second person. Besides, whatever powers or dignities are to be possessed by Christ, it is sufficiently intimated in this place, that he does not hold them independent and underived ; since he himself, and all the blessings which he bestows, are said to he given, that is, by God; and at the conclusion of the prophecy, in the next yerse, it is said, that the “ zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this,” I would also observe, that that part of the title on which the greatest stress has been laid may be rendered “the mighty God my faiher for ever, or the mighty God is my father for ever," which is exactly agreeable to many declarations of the scripture concerning Christ, and his usual title of “ the son of God;” and to this the angel, in his salutation of Mary, might probably allude, when he said, Luke i. 32. “ He shall he great, and shall be called the son of the highest;" and it is very observable, that
what he adds corresponds most remarkably with the remainder of this very prophecy of Isaiah. The propriet says, ver. 7. “ Of the increase of his government, and peace, there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to esta. blish it, with judgement and with justice, from henceforth even for ever.” The angel says, “ He shall be great, and shall be called the son of the Highest, and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his fasher David, and he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever, and of his kingdom there shall be no end.”
V. Many of the texts which are usually alleged in proof of the divinity of Christ, relate to God the Father only. One of the most remarkable of these is John i. 1. “In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him, and without him was not any thing inade that was inade. In him was life, and the life was the light of men; and the light shinech in darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that light, but was sent to bear witness of that light. That was the true light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. And the word was niade flesh, and dwelt among us,
and we hebeld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.”
These words, interpreted in the most literal manner, only imply thai the word, or Christ, had a being before the creation of the world; that he had the title of God, or of a God, and was the instrument by whom the slipreme God made all things; but they by no means imply that he was true and very God; for magistrates and others are sometimes called gods, on account of their power and dominion, in which they resemble God. Nay the derivation of Christ from the Father, and consequently his dependence upon him, is sufficiently expressed by his being called, in the last of these verses, “ the only begotten of the Father."
To me, however, it appears, that the apostle does not speak of the pre-existence of Christ in this place; but only of the power and wisdom of God, which dwelled or tabernacled in his ficsh; and that he probably meant to condemn some false opinions concerning the logos (which is the Greek for word) which are known to have prevailed in his time. Now, in contradiction to them, the apostle here asserts, that by the word of God we are not to understand any being distinct from God, but only the power or energy of God, which is so inuch with Goil, that it properly belongs to his nature, and is not at all distinct from God himself; and that the saine power which produced all things was manifest to men in the person of Jesus Christ, who was sent to enlighten the world ; that though his power made the world, it was not acknow