« PredošláPokračovať »
strengthened by the philosophical arguments which we have adduced above.* It may be observed in addition, that they are involved, in no small difficulty respecting Christ's exinanition, as it is called. For besides that, it is unscripturalt to suppose such a change in the doos as Arians and Homoeusians for the most part believe him to have undergone when he was made flesh; it is certainly quite as hard for human reason to comprehend how an exalted spirit could be thus thrust down into a state of infantile ignorance and weakness, or how the divine wisdom could allow it, were it possible, g as it is to understand the mysteries involved in our hypothesis. || We have no hesitation, therefore, in drawing
possible for Maty to demonstrate his proposition respecting the Father, without contradicting himsclf. For suppose some one should contend that the Father, as well as the Son, is a finite spirit, and is called God (in 1 Cor. viii. 6) merely on account of his intimate union with the Deity, affirming that this hypothesis harmonizes better than that of Maty, with the baptismal formula in Matt. xxviii. 19. Can the followers of Maty possibly refute such a theory with any show of consistency? Besides, as Maty assumes the union of three natures, God, the nojos, and the man esus, his doctrine is certainly not less mysterious than ours.
* To which may be added, those adduced by Toellner, in his Theol. Untersuch. 1. B. 1st. St. p. 33.
+ See Heb. i. 12. Ey O AUTOS No 1 This difficulty is not at all diminished by the hypothesis suggested by an anonymous author in Priestley's Theological Repository, Vol. I. p. 431, and in the British Theological Magazine, Vol. III. p. 802, that the nozos was changed into a human soul.
See Lardner's letter against the Arians, in the Brit. Theol. Mag. Vol. III. p. 731.
| The Homoeusians, whom I have read, are not very happy in their explanation of those passages which relate to Christ's exaltation. I do nut see how the supposition, that the reward of Christ consisted in the pleasurable consciousness of his own merits, (See Br. Theol. Mag. Vol. III.) can be reconciled with some expressions used by the apostles, descriptive of Christ's glory, (such as Phil.
the conclusion, that the hypothesis of the Homoeusiaus and of Clarke respecting the divinity of Christ, plausible as it is, and in a practical point of view so nearly allied to ours, must, nevertheless, yield to the latter as being more barmo. nious with the whole tenor of the scriptures as well as more consistent with itself. That it is not, after all, wholly free from difficulties, can give offence to no one, who remembers the words of Paul (1 Cor. xiii. 9.) EK MEKPOYE SINNEKOMEN, we know in part.
ii. 9. compared with Eph. i. 20. Heb. i. 3; x. 12. &c.) And as to the hypothesis of Clarke (Scripture Doctrines, P. JI. 47.) that the 1970s, who before his incarnation merely participated in the honors of Jehovah, was permitted, after death, as a reward for his services, to be worshipped as personally distinct from Jehovali, it would seem to imply that Christ enjoyed higher honors before than after his incarnation..
THE MOSAIC HISTORY ACCORDANT WITH TIIE EXISTING
STATE OF THINGS.
1. It is remarkable, in the history of man, that his body is covered with artiticial clothing; while all other animals have a natural covering suited to their condition and climate. Now, if man really needs clothing, why did his Creator place him in this wide world, unprovided with a natural covering, suited to his wants? It will not be satisfactory to answer, that man was endowed with reason, and was capable of providing clothing for himself ; for reason would be too slow in its oporations, for his comfort; it would have been long before he could discover the proper materials for clothing, and then, how could he, without instruction, have formed these materials into convenient garments ? Upon mere principles of reason, there is something altogether unaccountable in this abandonment of man to the slow process of discovery.
But there is another remarkable circumstance connected with the artificial clothing of the human body, and that is the shame of nakedness, which is found in every tribe and nation under heaven, except a few miserable savages, who have by long separation from the rest of the human family, lost every particle of the common traditions of our race. Clothing for the purposes of warmth and defence, is not necessary in all climates ; but every where, an attention is paid to covering the body, for the sake of decency. Reason dictates nothing of this kind. Among the other animals, there is no vestige of any such feeling. How then shall we account for these universal facts ? In no other way,
than by referring to the Bible, which fully explains this whole mystery. Here we learn, that man was provided with no natural clothing, because, when created, and as long as he remained innocent, he needed no other garments, than the innocence of his character. He was placed in a garden, where the temperature was exactly adapted to his body ;-where no chilling blasts, no pinching frosts, no desolating storms ,disturbed his tranquillity; and as he needed no clothing for protection, so he felt no shame on account of his nakedness. In Paradise, man was richly provided with every thing necessary and comfortable, and was exposed to no dangers or accidents from the elements.
We see then, that the munificent Creator did not turn man, his noblest work, loose upon the wide world, without the means of protecting himself. This event did, indeed, take place, but it was in punishment of man's disobedience; and even then, he furnished him with clothes, from the skins of animals, and thus taught him how to provide for himself. But the origin of artificial clothing is given in the Bible, with such simplicity and beauty, that it will be worth our while to hear the whole narrative, as related in the sacred record.
And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed."
"And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew, that they were naked, and they sewed fig-leaves together, and made themselves aprons."
“ And the Lord God called unto Adam and said unto him, where art thou ! And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked. And he said, who told thee, that thou wast naked ?"
“ Unto Adam also and to his wife, did the Lord God make coats of skins, and clothed them."
Here we have the true origin of artificial dress, and of the reasons which led to its use, which are sufficiently mortifying to male and female vanity, if they were duly considered.
There is much in this simple narrative which will serve to provoke the scoffing infidel to shoot his envenomed arrows of ridicule at the book of God; but they will strike upon the shield of truth, and will fall harmless to the ground. He may ask with an air of triumph, how the eating of a certain tree could open the eyes of the first pair, to know that they were naked? How could they be ignorant of their nakedness, if they had only the understanding of children? But this is a mere perversion of the meaning of the inspired historian. In the figurative language of the Bible, the eyes are said to be opened, when a new feeling is introduced into the mind, causing us to see things as with new eyes. God has so constituted the human mind, that transgres. sion produces the feelings of remorse and shame; and he had so ordered things, in regard to our first parents, that as soon as they eat the forbidden fruit, a deep feeling of shame on account of nakedness, overwhelmed them. Why this particular effect was connected with their transgression, it is not necessary for us to know. We have the fact, and that fact seems to explain a circumstance in the history of man wbich would otherwise be inexplicable.
Many fanciful theories have been invented to account for these peculiar feelings, found in all branches of the human family; but I will not pollute my paper by an exhibition of them here. The simple narrative of the Bible is enough, and exactly and remarkably accords with the facts universally observed to exist.
Al nations make use of artificial clothing, for purposes of decency, if not for protection from the weather; though no other species of animals is led by instinct to provide any clothing except that which nature furnishes. This remarkable fact inexplicable upon mere natural principles, is satisfactorily explained in the Mosaic history.
2. Among all nations, whether civilized or barbarous, we find existing, the institution of marriage ; and, almost uni