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Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father.' 2 John 3.
"God the Father.'* Jude, ver. 1.
John xvii, 3, “This is life eteroal to know, (or acknowledge) thee, O Father, to be the only true God, and Jesus, whom thou hast sent,' to be the Christ, or Messias.
Note 1. These words were spoken by Jesus Christ upon the most solemn occasion, therefore are highly to be regarded.
2. They are a part of his prayer to God the Father, and undoubt. edly with the highest degree of devotion.
3. What Christ spake himself upon all other occasions ought to be highly regarded, but if any preference ought to be given, what he said in the words above, being part of his solemu address to God, ought to be chiefly regarded.
4. There is no figuracive expression in the words, as is owned by all the ancients and the moderns : then the words must be taken in their plain, literal, obvious sense; and it is hardly possible to understand them otherwise than in the literal sense.
5. And that literal sense, which does express Christ's own mind, is, that the Father alone was the true God, or the only true God; and that he, Jesus Christ, or the Messias, was a person sent hy God, or God's messenger
6. That person whom Jesus Christ prayed to, and solemnly acknowledged to be the only true God, must be owned and acknowledged by all good Christians to be the only true God.
7. That person whom Jesus Christ solemnly declares to be the messenger of God, or sent by God, cannot possibly be the true God in the highest sense of those words, because Christ declares the Father alone to be the only true God whom he prayed to: and because all must acknowledge that Christ plainly distinguished himself by praying to his Father as the only true God, and by owning himself to be sent, or to be the messenger of that true God. . 8. If this be the sense of Christ. and his true meaning, then it is also the doctrine of eteroal life; and also a principal doctrine, as appears by the demonstrative pronoun this, and consequently this doctrine ought to be received and acknowledged by all the Christian world.
9. This very doctrine Christ declares, that the Father gave him, ver. 2, on purpose that he should deliver it to his followers : and ver. 8. This doctrine, or the words which God had given him, he himself had delivered to his disciples, and they had received it, and acknowledged indeed that he came forth from God, and believed that God had sent him.
10. Who then that professes himself a Christian can refuse to acknowledge a doctrine delivered from God to Christ and by Christ owned and delivered to his disciples, and by them received and acknowledged, as he declares in this prayer to God the Father. Joha xvii. 3, 7. 8.
In Christ's words, ver. 3, there are expressly mentioned two persons, and each of those two persons are described by two distinguishing cha. COROLLARIES.' 1. By the frequent use of this style, "God the Father,' &c. it seems very probable, that the apostles, and their disciples, the first Christians, commonly made use of these words in writing and speaking of God. :
2. It is most observable, and very notorious, that Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost, are never mentioned, in the Holy Scriptures, in a like style; viz. God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost; though these be now the unscriptural and antiscriptural terms of the modern tritheists, in most religious assemblies, throughout Christendom.
3 It is most evident froin these terms, viz. God the Father, who was the God, and the one God of the apostles, &c. And the same great truth will also appear in several other heads, or titles, in this collection.
4. It is also most observable, that although in the apostacy of the Christian church from some of the great and fundamental doctrines of Jesus Christ and his apostles, many disputes have risen about the Son and Holy Ghost, and for many ages overspread most part of Christendom: yet it hath never been questioned, but in all times and countries ever held and maintained, that the Father is God. This great truth has ever stood firm and unquestioned amongst all the trinitarian and tritheistic sophisters in the Christian church. Now, when this great point hath ever been held in all the ages and countries wherever Christianity hath been believed and professed; it is an amazing thought, that a firm stand was not made here; but some Christians should, boldly advance,
racters, by Christ himself, viz. 1. The Father is called the only true God. And 2. Jesus Christ is called him whom the Father sent. And the second characters contain two more remarkable points, viz. 1. That the Father was the person who sent. And 2. Jesus Christ was the person sent.
. and dare to assert, ihat beside and after the Father, a second and a third person, are God too.
5. If the concurring language of the foregoing texts be sufficient, as it certainly must be, tò establish this notion that tbe Father is the only true God, then it must follow, that it is not in the power of any general council, synod, or convocation, to establish any contrary or different doctrine ; nor, indeed, to appoint the use of any form of words inconsistent with that doctrine; such as this vulgar doxology,
to God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost :' which set of words not only lead directly to tritheism, but express a formal tritheism.
CHAP. IX God the Father, and the God of our Lord Jesus Christ,' and the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the frequent Style and Characters of the one true God in the New Testament.
Note 1. This style cannot possibly be ascribed to Christ, or to the Holy Ghost.
2. Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost, are never in - all the New Testament expressly styled the God and
Father of us Christians; or God the Son, or God the Holy Ghost, in express terms.
Jesus Christ expressly owns the Father to be the only true God, John xvii. 3. See chap. Of his Worship.
Rom. i. 7, St. Paul has these words, the God and Father of us, and of our Lord Jesus Christ.' Then
Rom. xv. 5, 6, St. Paul wishes or prays that the Roman Christians may be of one mind, according to Christ Jesus, that they might with one mind and with one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. dei Cor. i, 3, St. Paul wishes for the Corinthians in these words, Grace and peace from God the Father of us, and of our Lord Jesus Christ,' And viïj. 5, 6, • Though there be gods many so called (among the heathens) yet to us (Christians) there is but one God, the Father.'
xv. 24, · Then cometh the end, when he (that is Christ) shall deliver up the kingdom to God even the Father,' ver. 23. And · When all things have been put under him (that is, Christ) then shall the Son also himself be put under him (that is, God) who did put all things under him, that God may be all in all.
2 Cor. i. 2, Grace and peace from the God and Father of us, and of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Ver. 3, Blessed be the God and Father of us, and of our Lord Jesus Christ. .
xi. 31, 'The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is blessed for evermore,'
Gal. i, 1, God the Father who hath raised him (that is, Christ) from the dead.'.
Ver. 3, Grace and peace from God the Father of us, and of the Lord Jesus Christ.' So the Alexandrian and other MSS. And it is St. Paul's ordinary salutation in his epistles.
Ver. 4, 'According to the will of God our Father;' ' or the God and Father of us.
· Ephes. i, 2, St. Paul useth the same form of speech, as in almost all his epistles, • Grace and peace from the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.'.
Ver. 3, "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.'
Ver, 17, he petitions, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father,' would give the Ephesians a spirit of wisdom, &c.
iv. 6, • There is one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in all.'
v. 20, Giving thanks always for all things unto God, even the Father.' Note, God, 'the Father, the only object of our thanksgiving, plainly demonstrated.
vi. 23, Grace and love from God the Father of us, and our Lord Jesus Christ.' For so is the truc read
ing in some copies; and it agrees with the foregoing and following salutations often used by St. Paul.
Phil. i. 2,6 Grace and peace from God the Father of us and of our Lord Jesus Christ.'
Phil. ii. 9, 11, Wherefore God hath bighly exalted him (that is, Christ) and given him a name above every name that every tongue should confess, that Jesus Christ is Lord,' or rather that the Lord Jesus is the Christ, that is, the Messias, to the glory of God the Father.'
iv. 20, “ To God the Father of us, or our Father, . be glory through all ages. Amen.'
And here it is observable, that in all the fore-cited texts, that are salutations, at the beginning of St. Paul's epistles, our translators have inserted in five places the word from, before the Lord Jesus Christ, though they found no from in the original. But they why translated the seven following salutations, with · modesty left it out. Col, i. 2, 1 Thes, i, 2, 2 Thes. i. %, 1 Tim. i. 2, 2 Tim. i. 2, Titus i. 4, Philem. » ver. 3, as observed before.
Col i. 2, 'Grace be unto you, and peace from God the Father of us, and of our Lord Jesus Christ.' -4. Ver. 3, · We give thanks to the. God and Father
of our Lord Jesus Christ.
iii. 17, Giving thanks to God the Father through or by him ;' that is, by Christ's direction and example. See chap. of Worship..
i Thes, i, 1, St. Paul addresses the church of the Thessalonians, which is in God the Father of us, and of our Lord Jesus Christ;' as the Alexandrian MS. reads it; and wishes them, according to his
usual form of words, Grace, and peace from God · the Father of us, and of our Lord Jesus Christ.”. He
inmediately renders 'thanks to God, as he says he : did always; making mention of the Thessalonians
in his prayers, ver. 2, in the sight or presence of God · the Father. The same title, chap. iji. 11, 13, God the Father.
2 Thess i. 1,2, The same style as in the begin.