« AnteriorContinuar »
you; neither shall all flesh be cut The doctrine, that Noah was off any more by the waters of a Melchisedec, is very consistent flood - And God said, This is the with the chronological table, in the token of the covenant, which I eleventh chapter of Genesis. It make between me and you and is recorded thus: every living creature that is with
Years. you, for perpetual generations: I From the food to Arpbaxad, do set my bow in the cloud, and
Arphaxad to Salah, 35
Salali to Eber, it shall be for a token of a cove
Eber to Peleg,
34 pant between me and the earth.”
Peleg to Reu,
SO The parallel between the sacrifice
Reu to Terug,
32 of Noah and that of Christ, is
Terug to Nahor,
30 drawn in Isai. chap. liv. where
Nahor to Terad, Abraham's father,
29 the Lord
« For this is as the waters of Noah unto me; for as I have sworn that the waters of No Thus far we have a regular seah shall no more cover the earth, ries of years, which cannot be so have I sworn that I would not mistaken: but we cannot, in this be wroth with thee, nor rebuke manner, proceed any farther. We thee.” The sacrifice of Noah, are next told, that Terah lived sevlike that of Christ, was offered up enty years, and begat Abram, Nafor the whole world, and the ben- hor, and Haran. But, from this eficial effects of it, reach to the we cannot infer the age of Terah, end of time.
when Abram was born. It is nat4. Was Noah, like the Son of ural to suppose, that Abram was God, without descent? As it re- the oldest of the three: and as Tespects the new world, into which rah was 70 years old, when Haran he was miraculously brought, and was born, it is reasonable to supof whose inhabitants he was the pose, that he was several years sole progenitor, he was truly with younger when Abram was born. out descent, As his children only The proper method of reckoning, were preserved with him in the therefore, is this: to ascertain the ark; so he had no ancestor in the age of Abram, when he met Melnew world, none, whom he could chisedec; add this to the 222 years call father or mother.
already calculated to the birth of 5. Was Noak a King? He was, Terab; deduct the sum from 350, unquestionably, Lord and King of the number of years that Noah the whole earth. His family com
lived after the flood; and see prised all the inhabitants of the whether this allows Terah to have world, over whom he had a patri- had a reasonable time to come to archal right to rule.--As to his man's estate, and be the father of titles; these were derived from his children? sacerdotal office, in which he offer Abram, then, was 75 years old, ed a sacrifice of perpetual efficacy, when he left his own country. and procured a covenant of peren- After journeying into various planial peace. He is, in a natural ces, he overthrew the kings, and way, to all the world, what Christ was met by Melchisedec; but we is, in a spiritual way, viz. the per
are not told what bis age was, son, in whom the Divine Justice when this happened. After meet and Mercy united, to give life to ing with Milchisedec, he had sevmen: and hence his titles of King eral visions of God, married Hagar, of Righteousness, and King of and had a son by her; and when Peace.
this son was born, Abram was 86
years of age. All this must have | is, that the chronology is incontaken up some time. But, we sistent with itself, and must, will suppose (which is the most therefore, in one part or the other, unfavourable supposition) that A- be incorrect. Even supposing Tebram was 85 years old, when he rah to have been 70 years old when met Melchisedec. Add 85 to 222, Abram was born; he must have the number of years which elapsed lived 135 years longer, to have from the flood to the birth of Te- been 205 when he died; and conrah, and the sum is 307. Deduct sequently Abram must have been this from 350, the number of years 135 instead of 75 years old when that Noah lived after the food; he left Haran. An errour there and we have 43 years for the
age must be, some where: and it is not of Terah, when Abram was born. inconsistent with a belief of the It is, therefore, perfectly consis- Divine authority of the Scriptures, tent with the chronology, to sup- to suppose, that an errour in statpose, that Noah was living, when ing a number, might arise, either Abram defeated the kings. And from a wrong translation (numbers if we suppose (as we reasonably being represented, in the Original, may) that Terah was only 30 years by letters, instead of figures) or old when Abram was born, and from the carelessness of a transAbram only 80 years old, when criber. I am inclined to think, he met Melchisedec; Noah might that Terah's age should be 105 have lived 18 years after that instead of 205 ; in which case, meeting
Terah must have been 30 years To this result, however, there old when Abram was born; and it is one objection; which is this: is not unnatural to suppose, that Stephen, in the viith of the Acts, Abram left Haran the same year tells us, that Terah was dead, be his father died, i. e. the 75th of fore Abram left Haran: and it is his age: but, for this I have no said, Gen. xi. that Terah lived authority. Every one may sup205 years. Add this to 222, the pose what he pleases: but still the years from the flood to Terah's character remains the same; and birth, and the sum is 427. But there is not, nay, we are sure there Noah lived only 350 years after would not be another of the human the flood, and must, therefore, race, to whom the things spoken have been dead, long before Abram of Melchisedec could, with any met Melchisedec.
propriety be applied, besides Noah The answer to this objection, I himself.
FOR THE POPKINSIAS MAGAZIXX. shall judge' angels? How much
more, things that pertain to this THOUGHTS
CORINTHIANS, life? If then
life? If then ye have judgments of vi. 1-8.
things pertaining to this life, set Dare any of you, having a mat-them to judge who are least èster against another, go to law be teemed in the church. I speak to fore the unjust, and not before the your shame. Is it 80, that there is saints? Do ye not know that the not a wise man among you? no, saints shall judge the world? and not one who shall be able to judge if the world shall be judged by you, between his brethren? But brother are ye unworthy to judge the small- goeth to law with brother, and that est matters? Know ye not that we l before the unbelievers, Now there
fore there is utterly a fault among which is better than a great richyou, because ye go to law one with es," if it happens to be a brother another. Why do ye not rather in the church, from whom he retake wrong? Why do ye not rather ceives the injury, he must be consuffer yourselves to be defrauded? tent with such redress, as he can Nay, ye do wrong, and defraud, obtain by means of church disciand that your brethren.
pline-such as a pertinacious of
fender, perhaps, may please to In this part of the epistle, the give. "Is'it a duty to wait, till he apostle reproves the church at Co
is excommunicated? On the suprinth for two faults: that contro; position, that this would be safe, versies existed among them, and it is at best a sorry pretence, that that they went to law with one as, when excommunicated, he is another before heathen magistrates. no longer a “ brother,” it is right
When a controversy exists, one to arraign him before a tribunal, if not both of the parties were gen- where, to have arraigned him beerally in the wrong. It is, how. fore, would have been wrong. ever, possible, that men may dif- The excommunicated person we fer about their secular affairs, and are not to count as an enemy,' yet have no disposition to do but to admonish as a “ brother." wrong," or “ defraud." Both
It is, then, an important point parties may be willing to refer to decide, what characters the their cause to a tribunal, where it apostle designed to specify, by the will be decided on principles of terms “ unjust” and “ unbelievjustice and equity. But it is more ers.” And since Corinth was unthan intimated by the apostle, der the Roman government ; it that some of the Corinthian breth- must have been the Roman magisren were of a litigious spirit; that trates, who were Pagans, to whom they loved contention, and enter- he had reference. Guyse, in his ed into law-suits, not to secure Paraphrase, has the following: “ Is important rights, or to obtain re
it not a rash, unnecessary, and dress for great injuries, but to con- unwarrantable venture, beyond tend about the smallest mat- the rules of prudence, love and ters.” For such a spirit and prac-duty, for any of you, who have tice, they deserved reproof. a matter of controversy with a
But the apostle evidently puts Christian brother, about civil afthe greater stress on the other fairs, to enter immediately into a fault. He expresses astonishment law-suit against him, and try it in at their going to law before the a litigious way before heathen mag. “ unjust,” or the "unbelievers." istrates?” Dr. Gill, in his comIt should be observed, that the mentary on this passage, says; apostle's meaning much depends “ The apostle here dissuades from on the above terms. If the unjust the practice of going to law before and unbelievers mean all persons, heathen magistrates.” The same who are not members of the visible interpretation is given by Scott, church; it follows, that it is wrong Whitby, &c. Even the Jews re: for professors of religion to go to garded it as profane and wicked law before any courts, except for any of their own people to go those, which are purely ecclesias- to a heathen tribunal to settle a tical; and that though a man has controversy. Whitby says, and been defrauded of all his sub- Macknight states the same fact, stance, and deprived, by calumny“ The saying of the Jews is this, and slander, of a “good name," that he who goes to law before the
tribunal of the Gentiles, profanes, that Christians must not hold civil the name of God, and gives hon- offices? For how can a Christian our to an idol.” From which it obligate himself by an oath, to be appears, that such was the manner faithful to the laws of his country, of the Pagan courts, that those, when the case may happen, that a who brought causes before them, brother in the church may expose must acknowledge their religions himself to the penal sanctions of or pay homage to their idols ; | the law, if, at the same time he is which was a sufficient reason, sure bound by the vows of his covenant ly, why the apostle should reprove not to go to law with a brother? those members of the church at But if it is consistent, that memCorinth, who went to law before bers of a Christian church should such courts."
hold civil offices, or rule as magisHad the Jews at that time, then, trates in a Christian land; then no civil courts, by which the rights must it be conceded, that the words of individuals could be secured of the apostle do not imply, that it Or were the Jews and primitive is absolutely wrong for brother to Christians obliged, by their reli go to law with brother-it must be gion, to see their individual rights conceded, not only that it may be suffer from injustice and fraud, right, but a duty. without any legal redress? MACK I conclude with the following NIGHT says, ** The Jews in the quotation from Calvin's INSTITprovinces, were allowed by the UTES, Book ix. chap. XX. Those, Romans, to hold courts of judica- who positively condemn all controture for determining, according to versies at law, ought to undertheir own jurisprudence, such con stand, that they thereby reject a
holy ordinance of God, and a gift were among themselves. The of the number of those, which may same privilege (he says) I doubt be “pure to the pure:" unless they not, was enjoyed by the Christ mean to charge Paul with a crime, ians. For, as there were many who repelled the calumny of his Jews among them, and as they accusers, exposing their subtilty agreed with the Jews in abstaining and malice; who before his judges from the worship of heathen gods, asserted his right to the privileges they were, in the first age, con of a Roman citizen ; and who, sidered as Jews, and enjoyed their when he found it necessary, apimmunities."
pealed from an unjust Governor Hence, though it was inconsis to the tribunal of Cæsar. tent, that Jews or Christians should “The objection, which is frego to law before heathen courts, quently alleged, that law-suits are they considered it a right to have universally condemned by Paul, civil courts, by which they could has no foundation in truth. It have their rights secured, or their may be easily understood, from controversies decided, without his words, that in the church of paying homage to false gods. the Corinthians, there was an im
İf, indeed, it be admitted, that moderate rage for litigation; so these words of the apostle prove that they exposed the gospel of that it is wrong, in any case, for Christ, and all the religion which professors of religion to go to law they professed, to the cavils and
another, even under a reproaches of the impious.-But, Christian
government, where no when one sees that, without any other than the God of the Bible is breach of cbarity, he may defend
ged, will it not follow, This property, the loss of which
would be a serious injury to him; whatever litigations are undertakif he do it, he does no offence en without charity, or are carried against that doctrine of Paul. In to a degree inconsistent with it, a word, as we have observed at we conclude them, beyond all conthe beginning, charity will give troversy, to be unjust and wickevery one the best counsel: fored."
ON REVIVALS OF RELIGION. a very different nature, are set up No. IX.
in its place. One man urges upon In the last number some topics | others his own favourite views of of reflection were suggested, to i truth and duty, not so much beshow the importance of a rerival cause they are right, as because of religion in every church to its they are his, and thinks that all members as individuals. I would | dissent from them is highly criminow observe,
nal. Another thinks those views II. Let the members of the are wrong, and that opposition to church consider the great impor- them is a duty. And each centance of a revival to the church to sures the other for his conduct. which they belong.
One man thinks it belongs to him 1. Let them consider how much to be a leader in the church, and its present peace depends upon it. that others do not pay him the When there is a revival' in a honour that is due. Another thinks church, and all its members are in he takes too much upon himself, the lively exercise of the Christian and ought to be kept down. One graces, all is harmony and peace. thinks that his brother bas treated They are of one heart and one him with slight, and that a proper soul. Little differences of opinion self-respect calls upon him to rethat may exist, occasion no discor- sent the affront. The other thinks dant feelings. They can bears that his brother's conduct merited with each other's infirmities, and such treatment, and feels justified yield to each other's wishes. The in extending it a little further. glow of Christian feeling, which | One thinks that his brother has then animates their bosoms, binds wronged him in his property, and them to each other with indissolu- | that a little retaliation would teach ble ties. No root of bitterness him better. The other thinks the can spring up to trouble them. wrong is wholly on the opposite No assaults from without can dis- side, and retaliates again. One turb their harmony. For the thinks his brother has done him spirit that was in Christ animates wrong, and tells him his fault. the whole mass. But, let religion But he does it in a manner and decay, let a state of coldness suc with a spirit which is calculated ceed, let the lively exercise of the to provoke rather than to concilChristian graces give place to the 1 iate; and the offender is made spirit of the world, and the church
Another thinks his brobecomes a divided and distracted | ther has done him wrong; but body. And it is very natural that thinks a reproof would do no good, it should be so. As the spirit of and broods over the injury in sulGod withdraws, another spirit i len silence. Another who has retakes possession. When the glory | ceived an injury, says nothing to of God ceases to be the prominent his offending brother, but tells the object of regard, other objects, of fault to others, and they again to