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common circulation, were to be noticed, a separate voluminous work would I am afraid fail to contain them. And if the abstract ata tributes of God such as wisdom, mercy, truth, venevolence, &c. are to be esteemed as separate deities, on account of their being sometimes personified and declared eternal and associat. ing with God, this mode of literal interpretaun would, I admit, be so far advantageous to the cause of the Editor as respects the refutation of the doctrine of the unity of God, but would not be precisely favorable to the doctrine of the trinity, as it would certainly extend the number of personified deities much beyond three. Take for example the following passages which personify the attributes of God and ascribe to them eternity and association with God. Psalm CXXX. 7. “ With the Lord there is mercy and with him is plenteous redemption" LXXXV. 10. Mercy and truth are met together righteousness and peace have kissed each other.” Nuinber XVI. 46. “There is wrath gone out from the Lord.” have mercy, redemption, truth, and wrath •ail spoken of as' separate existences. we therefore to consider them as persons of the Godhead? As abstract qualities are often represeuted in the scriptures and in Asiatic writings generally, as persons and agents to render ideas
familiar to the understanding, so real existences are intended sometimes under the appellation of abstract qualities for the sake of energy of expression. In 1 John IV. 8. God is declared to be mere Love. John 1. 1. Jesus is called word or revelation ; 1 Cor. 1. 24. and 30. Christ is represented as power and wisdom &c. 1 Cor. V. 21. true Christians are declared to be wisdom in (hrist. and Israel is said to be an astonishment in Deut. XXVIII. 37, and curse in Zech. VIII 13. Abraham to be blessing in Genesis. XII. 2. and Jehovah is declared to be glory in Zech, II. 5. But every unprejudiced mind is convinced that these allegorical terms neither can alter the fact nor can they change the nature of the unity of God and of the dependence of his attributes.
After this no further remark seem's necessary on the passages quoted by the Editor from Matthew and Luke-- where, as in many other passages in wbich the word wisdom is to be found, the sense neither requires nor even admits of our understanding Jesus to be meant under that appellation,
The Editor quotes Isaiah VI. 1. 10. relating to the Prophet's vision of God: He then comments "as this glorious vision wherein the Prophet received his commission, represented either the father or the son, we might have ex. pected that it should be the son, who had undertaken to redeem men.” The Editor after. wards quotes John XII. 41. " these things said Isaiah when he saw his glory and spoke of him," and considers these words as decisive testimony of the opinion that it was the son who was seen by the Prophet in the vision.
Let us first impartially refer to the context of verse 41. of John. We find in the verse a personal pronoun used three times. The first "he" in the phrase " when he saw” though understood in the Greek verb “ ELDE " ; the second “his” connected with the word “glory;" and the third " of him” after the verb " spoke"thus~" when he saw his glory and spoke of him. The first pronoun "he" of course refers to Isaiah mentioned just before it. The second and the third "his" and " of him” can have no reference to Isaiah, for the words “ when Isaiah saw Isaiah's glory and spoke of Isaiah, could bear no sense whatever. These two last propouns must therefore have reference to some pronoun or noun to be found in the immediately preceding part of the passage. We accordingly find from the preceding verse (40.) that these pronouns refer to Jehovah the God of hosts mentioned twice in verse 33. whose glory Isaiah saw and in whose behalf he spoke, without mention of the son being once made between verse 38 and 41. the passage thus stands(v. 38.) He(Isaiali) spoke Lord who hath believed our report and to whom hath the arm of the Lord been revealed ?(39.) Therefore they could not believe that Isaiah said again (40.) He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; (41.) These things said Isaiah when he saw his glory and spoke of him. Isaiah must have then seen the glory of him in whose behalf he spoke; a fact which neither party can dispute: and as it is evident from the preceding verse (40.) and from Isaiah VI. that he spoke of God who blinded the eyes of the Jews and hardened their hearts, it necessarily follows that he saw the glory of that very being spoken of by Isaiah. For further illustration of God's being often declared to have blinded their eyes and hardened their hearts, I quote Romans XII. 7 and 8. " What thren? Israel hath not obtain. ed that which he seeketh for ; but the election hath oblamed it and the rest were blinded. According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber; eyes that they should not see and ears that they should not hear unto this day." Isaiah LXII. 17. .“ O Lord, why hast thou made us to err
from thy ways and hardened our heart from ihy fear: Return for thy servants' sake, the tribe of thy inheritance.” From v. the 38 to 41. as already observed is not a single noun or a pronoun that can have allusion to Jesus. But we find in verse 42. the pronoun “ him" implying the son as absolutely required by the sense, in reference to verse 37. and in consistence with verse 44. in which the name of Jesus is found mentioned. As all the Pharisees believed in God as well as in Isaiah one of their prophets, the text could convey no meaning, if the phrase " nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed in him" were admitted to bear referencc either to God or Isaiah.
If it be insisted upon in defiance of all the foregoing explanation that the two last mentioned pronouns in verse 41. “ when he saw his glory and spoke of him". are applied to Jesus, the passage in the evangelist would be in that case more correctly explained by re. ferring it to John VIII. 56. “your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day,” which cannot be understood of ocular vision but prophetic anticipation; whereas the glory seen in the vision of Isaiah was that of God himself in the deli.