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posilum] or thing subsisting of itself. A divine person could not die. If therefore Christ was destitute of a human person, capable of dying and rising from the dead, how could he die, or rise from the dead? The same reason shows that Christ was not truly a man, since every one who is a real man is a human person. But that opinion which acknowledges Christ as subsisting of himself, and therefore truly a man, who was obedient to his Father unto death ; and asserts and clearly determines that he died, was raised from the dead by God, and endowed with immortality; does in a wonderful manner sustain our hope of eternal salvation ; placing before us the very image of the thing, and assuring us that we also, though we be mortal and die, shall nevertheless, if we follow his footsteps, be in due time raised from the dead, and be brought to a participation of the im. mortality which he now enjoys.
How, thirdly, does the opinion of our adversaries make one thing of Christ, and another of the Son of God?
Because it makes of Christ, the one God himself, and calls him the Son of God, who actually existed before the conception of the 'man Jesus by the Holy Spirit, and his birth of the Virgin, and indeed before all ages, and directs to the worship of him, our honour and faith :-while in the mean time, either he who is truly Christ and the Son of God, is to them an idol, if they worship him; or else it does not appear how he is at once the one God, and a man, and can be wor
shipped both as God, and as a man whom God has exalted 39.
39 If some difficulties should still occur to any one in respect to other passages of Scripture besides those which have been examined, he will find them explained in the Bibliotheca Fratrum Polonorum, in Enjedinus, or Volkelius; also in Felbinger's Demonstrations of Christianity, and in the Annotations of Grotius and Brenius. It ought not to seem to any one a matter of surprise, that more should be said on this subject than on the others; for extreme is the hatred which these churches endure from all, on account of this confession concerning the Son of Man.
It remains that we subjoin a few things concerning AntiQUITY, about which many make so much noise. That the first Christian teachers, who are called Fathers, believed, until the year 300 and afterwards, that the Father alone was the supreme God, will appear from an examination of their wri. tings : and for this purpose their collected opinions are given by Petavius in his work on the Trinity, by Zwicker in his įrenicum Irenicorum, by Sandius in his Nucleus of Eccles. Hist., and in others of his publications. I do not however deny that most of them ascribed two natures to the Son of God; asserted his existence before the creation of the world; and taught nearly the same things concerning him as were afterwards maintained by the Arians. Nevertheless, in the most ancient of them, those who lived nearest the time of the Apostles, nothing of this kind appears; indeed the contrary may plainly be
ollected from them. To omit at present other proofs, Eusebius (Hist. Eccles. lib. v. cap. 28), speaking of the Artemonites, who flourished about the year 200, and acknowledged no other for the Son of God besides or before him who was conceived of the holy Spirit, and born of the Virgin, (constantly asserting that the primitive Christians, and indeed the Apostles themselves taught the same doctrine, as Theodoret - testifies, as well as Eusebius) mentions an ancient writer refuting them by the authority of Justin, Miltiades, Tatian, Clemens, Irenæus,and Melito, who, he says, taught opinions contrary to those of the Artemonites. Justin, the first of these authorities, flourished about the year 160. Undoubt. edly then the disciples of the Apostles, who were anterior to him, taught the same as the Nazarenes, the first Christians : SECTION V.
OF THE PROPHETIC OFFICE OF CHRIST.
I UNDERSTAND what relates to the Person of Christ, proceed now to those things which pertain to his offices.
indeed nothing to the contrary is to be gathered from their genuine writings. Now that the first Christians in Judæa, who confessed that Jesus was the Christ, were called Nazarenes, is evident from Acts xxiv. 5, 14; and from the existing records of antiquity; which also among others, Grotius in his Proleg. in Matth. and Curcellæus, Diatr. de Esu. Sangu. cap. vi. have clearly demonstrated: and that the Nazarenes taught the same doctrines as were afterwards maintained by the Artemonites is declared by Theodoret, Epiphanius, Jerome, and Augustine. Indeed that this was the unanimous opinion of the primitive Church appears besides from that creed alone which is called the Apostles', and to which we assent. * B. Wisso
*[The English reader, who may wish for further information on this subject, may consult Dr. Priestley's elaborate and masterly work, “ The History of Early Opinions concerning Jesus Christ,” in four volumes octavo. He should also per- use the Tracts which were published by both the learned combatants in the controversy between Dr. Horsley and Dr. Priestley. These have lately been reprinted, the one by the bishop's son, the Rev. Heneage Horsley, and the other by the London Unitarian Society, under the editorial direction of the Rev. Thomas Belsham, who has added to this edition a Review of the Controversy by Doctor Priestley, in four letters never before published. Mr. Belsham has also personally distinguished himself in the discussions on this subject: first, by a “Review of the Controversy between Dr. Priestley and Dr. Horsley,” inserted in his “Calm Inquiry into the Scripture Doctrine concerning the Person of Christ :" afterwards in his “ Claims of Dr. Priestley in the Controversy By all means : you must know then that the offices of Christ consist in his being a PROPHET, or the Mediator of the New Covenant; our High PRIEST; and our King.
Where in the Scriptures is he called a PROPHET, and the Mediator of the New Covenant ?
There is a singular testimony to this effect which Peter quotes from Moses, who had spoken it to the Fathers, (Acts iii. 22) “A Prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.” The author of the Epistle to the Hebrews, also, writes (chap. xii. 24), "Ye are come-to Jesus the Mediator of the New Covenant:" and uses the same language, chap. viii. 6. For Moses, also, in so far as he was the Mediator of the Old Covenant (Gal. iii. 19), was at the same time a prophet.
Wherein consists his prophetic office ?
In perfectly manifesting to us, confirming, and establishing, the hidden Will of God.
Whence do you prove that Christ has perfectly manifested to us the Will of God?
From hence;—that Christ himself told his disciples (John xv. 15), “All things that I have heard of my Father, I have made known unto you:"--and there was nothing pertaining to his Will which he had not heard. And also because John testifies concerning with Bishop Horsley, restated, and vindicated, in reply to the Animadversions of the Rev. Heneage Horsley, &c."and lastly, in his “ Letters to the Unitarians of South Wales," a work written in reply to the present Bishop of St. David's, who had entered the lists as the champion of Dr. Horsley, and the antagonist of Dr. Priestley and Mr. Belsham. TRANSL.]
him (John i. 14 and 16), that he "dwelt among his disciples full of grace and truth:” and that himself, as well as others, had received of his fulness, and grace for grace:" in illustration of which he adds (ver. 17, 18), “ For the Law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. Noman hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him." To the same purpose are the words of Paul (Col. ii. 9), that “ in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily;" or, as he had stated before (ver. 3), that “ in Christ,” (or rather, “in the mystery of God and of Christ,”). were hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” Hence he is styled the “Word of God" and the “Image of the invisible God;" the import of which titles I have already explained.
But by what means did the Lord Jesus himself acquire his knowledge of the divine Will?
By ascending into heaven, where he beheld his Father, and that life and happiness which he was to announce to us; where also he heard from the Father all those things which it would behoove him to teach. Being afterwards sent by him from heaven to the earth, he was most largely endowed with the Holy Spirit, through whose inspiration he proclaimed what he had learnt from the Father.
By what testimonies of Scripture do you prove these things?
That Christ ascended into heaven, he himself testifies, John iii. 13, where he thus speaks : “ No man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of Man which is in