« AnteriorContinuar »
saving, (active ;) and some learned men contend, that the original may admit of that rendering: but I would rest nothing on such insecure ground. The prophecy, however, as acknowledged by a Jew to relate to the Messiah, is of considerable importance in the argument. "Rejoice greatly, "O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Je"rusalem: behold thy King cometh unto thee, "he is just, and saved; lowly, and riding upon "an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass. And "I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim, and the "horse from Jerusalem; and the battle-bow shall "be cut off; and he shall speak peace unto the "heathen; and his dominion shall be from sea to
sea, and from the river, even to the ends of the "earth. As for thee also, by the blood of thy "covenant, I have sent forth thy prisoners out of "the pit, wherein is no water." 1
This is a very different view of the Messiah, of his victories and triumphs, of " the weapons of his "warfare," and the effect of them on the heathen, than that exhibited in the subsequent pages of Mr. C.'s book. I entreat the reader carefully to examine the several clauses of this remarkable prophecy, and to bear them in mind, as we proceed. There are three words in the original, each decidedly meaning an ass: an ass, a she ass; the colt of an ass. But the Septuagint seems ashamed of this humiliating circumstance, and uses more general terms; ὑποζύγιον, καὶ πῶλον νέον: a beast of burden, even a young colt.-We know that this part of the prophecy was most exactly and liter
Zech. ix. 9-11.
ally fulfilled in Jesus of Nazareth, when meek and lowly, as Zion's king, he entered Jerusalem on the colt of an ass, amidst the acclamations of the multitudes," crying, Hosanna to the Son of Da"vid:" "Blessed be the kingdom of our father "David that cometh in the name of the Lord. "Hosanna in the highest." But let the reader determine, whether it be at all probable, that such a Messiah as the Jews expect, will enter Jerusalem in this lowly manner, when saved, and made triumphant over all his opponents. The scripture, however, cannot be broken: and, if Jesus be not the Messiah, the Messiah, when he comes, will certainly, in the literal sense, thus enter Jerusalem, as Zion's King.
I shall not enlarge on the other clauses of the prophecy. In whatever way we interpret the prediction, "I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim, "and the horse from Jerusalem, and the battle"bow shall be cut off;" it cannot accord with victories obtained by the Jews in sanguinary contests, and with the slaughter of numerous enemies, in the usual way of war and triumph : for the establishment of Messiah's kingdom, at his coming, (and not the restoration of Israel,') is predicted, when by his apostles, "the weapons of "whose warfare were not carnal, but mighty "through God," "he spake peace to the heathen," and formed a most extensive kingdom over willing subjects in the gentile world. "The blood "of thy covenant" should also be noted: but I
Matt. xxi. 4-11. Mark xi. 6-11. Luke xix. 35-38. John xii. 12-16.
forbear to enlarge, as the prophecy must be considered in another connexion.
Many other scriptures which Christians adduce concerning the Messiah as a Saviour, being warranted in so doing by the inspired writers of the New Testament, must not be used in this argument with Jews: especially as most of them at present, I suppose, consider him as a mere man, like other men.' It is not, however, correct to conclude that, because God is a Saviour; nay, because he says, "Besides me there is no Saviour;" none else can in any sense be called a Saviour. A Saviour is a deliverer from evil, temporal or eternal; from enemies, worldly or spiritual; from dangers of whatever kind. yin the participle hiphel of y is often used in this sense, and it signifies, one causing salvation. It is used of JEHOVAH, in the texts referred to below :1 and of men in many other places.2 Not only the great Agent is a Saviour, but his instruments also have the same title.
The prophet introduces in a most sublime manner, One who says, "I that speak in righteousness, mighty to save.".
"Mine own arm "brought salvation unto me."3 If this be a prophecy of the Messiah, he speaks as a Saviour, and as saving by his own power: if it be not, who, or what, is predicted?
The language of the Lord by Hosea is also remarkable "I will have mercy on the house of
1 Is. xliii. 11 xlv. 15, 21. lxiii. 8. Hos. xiii. 4. Zech. viii. 7. 2 Deut. xxii. 27. xxviii. 29. Judg. iii. 9, 15.
2 Kings xiii. 5. Neh. ix. 27. Is. xix. 20.
1 Sam. xi. 3.
Is. lxiii. 1-6.
"Judah, and will save them by the Lord their God; " and I will not save them by the sword, &c."l
The Messiah is, beyond dispute, called "a "Redeemer ;" an appellation at least equally appropriate to JEHOVAH. This Mr. C. confesses, and in a manner which in fact concedes the point in contest. "This is my covenant." What is that 'covenant; To send them the Deliverer: for "what?" To take away their sins." (P. 11.)—Now a deliverer, to take away their sins,' is One who "shall save his people from their sins."2 The Messiah is also in several places predicted as "the Salvation of God."3 And no doubt Simeon gave the true meaning of these prophecies, when he said, "Mine eyes have seen thy "Salvation; a light to lighten the gentiles, and "to be the glory of thy people Israel."
But it is needless to insist further on this, If the Messiah was not predicted as a Saviour, or Deliverer, in one sense or another; what was to be the object of his coming?-It is manifest that the Jews expect a Deliverer from temporal evils, and worldly enemies: Christians rejoice in a Saviour from sin and Satan, from wrath and hell, "salvation with eternal glory:" They look to Immanuel, as "become the Author of eternal "salvation to all them that obey him."-In this view of the subject, they are so familiar with the term Saviour as used of the Messiah, and so in the habit of using the language of the Old Testament, in expressing their thoughts and feelings
Comp. Hos. i. 7. Tit. ii. 10-13. iii. 4-6. Matt. i. 21. Rom. xi. 26.
2 Is. lix. 20.
'Is. xii. 2. xlix. 6. lii. 10.
respecting Him; that they cannot but be surprised to hear it so much as questioned, whether the Messiah should be a Saviour or not.
P. 17. 1. 3. THE SON OF MAN.-Ezekiel' &c. It is rather wonderful that the writer should assert, that Jesus never thought of such a thing' as being called God, or any thing more than "the "Son of Man." Had the Jews in our Lord's days thought so, they must either have given up their prosecution of him; or conducted it on other grounds. "Therefore the Jews sought the
more to kill him, because he had not only broken "the sabbath, but said also that God was his "Father, making himself equal with God." 1 "The Jews answered him; for a good work we "stone thee not, but for blasphemy; because "thou being a man makest thyself God." 2" We "have a law, and by our law he ought to die, "because he made himself the Son of God." 3: It would be quite superfluous to quote any texts in proof that he called himself the Son of God, in the highest and most appropriate sense. 4
Mr. C. asserts, that if Jesus is man he is no God.' This Socinians have often done but assertion is not proof. "To us a Son is given, " and his name shall be called Wonderful, Coun"sellor, the MIGHTY GOD."5 "Without contro
versy, Great is the mystery of Godliness, God "was manifest in the flesh."6 Certainly man is not God, nor God man: but the general tradition
2 John x. 30-33.
' John v. 17, 18. Matt. xxvi. 63. Luke xxii. 70.
3 John xix. 7.
'John iii. 15, 16. v. 25, 26. • 1 Tim. iii. 16.
ix. 35. x. 29, 30, 36. 5 Is. ix. 6.