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with the utmost effrontery, he calls it “an eastern fable, a poetical effusion, not improbably a drama," (vol. I, p. 81.) Thus, with a Socinian, those parts of Scripture which do not give countenance to his creed, are any thing, or no. thing ; a legendary tale, or an old ballad. Instead of granting that “whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning ;" he will (some would say blasphemously) suppose that they were written when the author was in a merry mood, for the entertainment of boys and girls on a holiday.

“ The first chapter,” says Mr. G., "will furnish us with a key to the term (Satan) in every other part of the book ;" (vol. i, p. 81;) but he might as well have called it a fire in which to burn the whole. The difficulties with which he meets in that chapter are converted into some

kind of proof that the whole must be an allegory. Now we must observe two things: 1. That the allusions with which we meet in Scripture are allusions to real facts, and to real beings. The sacred writers do not "conjure up" imagi. nary beings at a “nonplus,” either for the exercise of their genius, or the amusement of their readers. Such a con. duct would but ill become those who are commissioned to instruct mankind in things spiritual. If therefore we should grant that the first chapter of Job is an allegory, still we should maintain that all its allusions are founded in facts, and that the poetical mention of Satan, in such a book, would be proof of his existence. Mankind have invented superstitions enow, without receiving any addition to them from those Scriptures which are intended for the destruction of error, and the diffusion of Divine truth. So far is the book of Job from “darkening counsel by words without knowledge," that in that book the practice is reproved : see Job xxx, 8. 2. That there is no ground for the supposition that the book of Job is an allegory. It is an exposition of what actually took place, couched in such terms as will best convey the truth to human minds. In what terms would Mr. G. describe the transactions of the invisible world, if he reject such as are used in the chapter in question ? Have those Socinians who suppose their own souls to be nothing but organized matter, refined and spiritualized their ideas, so as to be able to speak of spi. ritual things in any other language than “after the manner of men ?


To answer Mr. G.’s objections to the literal interpreta. tion of this book, is rather to instruct ignorance than to combat argument. Satan,says he, “comes unawed, unabashed, into the presence of the Almighty! The great Jehovah condescends to hold a conversation with him, upon terms of the utmost familiarity. With the most per. fect confidence, he gives an account to God what he has been doing. The Almighty points out a being to him as having escaped his notice!" (vol. I, p. 88.) Now is this argument ? Is it any thing more than flourish? The words printed in italics are the emphatical words, and in them the strength of the supposed argument consists. But they are the comment, not the text. One of them is entirely false, and the rest are mere conjecture.

Again : " He begs of God to afflict this man !” What wonder ? 6 God gives him permission to afflict him.” And does not God permit all our afflictions? Does not Mr. G. know that blessed is the man that endureth temptation ; for when he is tried he shall receive the crown of life? “Was it necessary that he should first go and petition the Almighty ?” He could not afflict Job without permission; for after all the devil is not almighty.

“In every sense of the word was not the devil his (God's) agent?” No.

He acted not for God, at the divine command, but under permission. “ Were not the Sabeans, the Chaldeans, the lightning, the hurricane, sufficient agents of the Deity ?” Now Mr. G. has answered his own question. Why might not Satan be permitted to do apparent mischief, as well as the Sabeans and the Chaldeans? “But were not the latter sufficient ?" They did not fight against Job, till Satan had obtained permission, and then they acted their part under his influ. ence and management. “But Job imputes the whole to God.” He did so, and justly; for all Job's trials had by him been wisely permitted and overruled. If this argument prove the nonentity of Satan, it will equally prove the nonentity of the Sabeans and Chaldeans.

But how does Mr. G.'s interpretation consist with the text ? “The sons of God were the holy men who came to worship in the temple of the Lord. Their wicked adver. saries, their Satan, assembled with them, opposed them to the utmost of their power, and were permitted by God to be successful in their schemes of hostility.” This is the


way to make every thing simple and clear. Now what becomes of the conversation between God and Satan? It is unphilosophical! What raised the hurricane ? What caused the lightning to descend? Who afflicted Job's body with biles? Mr. G. has left you to find out all that as you may. He does not wish to be responsible for the difficulties of which he is the author.

Our “great High Priest was tempted in all things, like the children of men.” His temptations are, by the evan. gelist, imputed to a diabolical agency. The whole account of this transaction is to be found in Matt. iv. But Mr. G. again objects to the literal interpretation. With. out repeating that the whole account is couched in terms the most proper for conveying the truth of the facts to mankind, we will hear and answer his objections.

“ Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness on purpose to be tempted by the devil.” (Vol. I, p. 87.) Just

He came to bruise the serpent's head; and there must be a conflict before there could be a conquest. “I will put enmity (said God himself) between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed,” Gen. iii, 15. “ He had fasted forty days, when he began to be hungry." (Vol. I, p. 87.) That he was hungry after a fast of forty days is no great wonder. And that he should fast forty days without being hungry till then, is as possible as that he should live forty days without food; or that Moses and Elijah should hold a fast of the same duration. things are possible with God.” “ Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God :" by any means which God is pleased to ordain. 6 He knew the devil as soon as he appeared to him.” (Vol. i, p. 87.) What then? 6. The devil walked with him through the city of Jerusalem, to a pinnacle of the temple.” Suppose the devil to have assumed a hu. man appearance, and where is the difficulty ?

66 He next accompanied him to a high mountain, where he could see all the kingdoms of the world; a thing naturally impossible!” (Vol. i, p. 87.) Perhaps it was a visionary repre. sentation. Or, the expression may possibly have a limited meaning, as in Luke ii, 1. “And then the devil, know. ing he was speaking to the Son of God, who was aware who he was, had the presumption to ask, that he would fall

“ All

down and worship him instead of God the Father.” (Vol. i, p. 88.) Mr. G. is very much concerned that the devil should speak and act with great propriety and decorum, and in a manner worthy of the omniscience which he im. putes to him. Satan has not, however, on this occasion, manifested so much presumption as Mr. G.'s jealousy has led him to suspect. He did not ask the Son of God to worship him instead of God the Father: but since the contest between them was for the dominion of the world, he with sufficient subtlety and impudence, proposed to cede to him the whole on condition that he would do him religious homage for it. "Upon supposition that all these inconsistencies (an unlucky word!) still gain credit, I add one more, that if Jesus Christ were a deity, this was no tenptation at all, for he knew him from the first, it required no effort to resist him, and nothing was to be gained, but every thing lost by obeying him.” (Vol. i, p. 88.) All the “inconsistency,” as Mr. G. calls it, arises from a false supposition, that if Jesus Christ was God, he was not man; that if he was almighty, he had no human infirmity. Suppose him human as well as divine, and the difficulty vanishes. On Mr. G.'s hypothesis, Jesus Christ had then received "miraculous powers ;" (vol. I, p. 88;) if so, what effort was necessary to him in withstanding temptation ? The power which afterward cast out demons was sufficient to withstand this temptation. The answer in one case serves equally with the other. “nothing was to be gained, but every thing (was to be) lost by obeying" the tempter.

Let us now attend to Mr. G.'s comment on the history of our Lord's temptation. “Contrast with this interpreta. tion the following, which the very expression of being led by the Spirit seems at once to denote. As soon as Jesus had received from God all the miraculous powers conferred upon him at his baptism, his mind was occupied with the thought how he might be able to use these powers. Worldly thoughts first arose ; worldly objects presented themselves to his view. This adversary to divine things, this Satan, suggested to him the use miraculous powers. How he might gratify his palate by speaking only to the stones ; how he might command universal admiration and obedience, by publicly throwing

In either case, himself from the temple; how he might gain universal dominion by the corrupt use of his power.” (Vol. i, p. 89.) We

e may observe that, in his own comments, Mr. G. meets with no difficulty. He never applies his key to try whether it be fitted to all the wards of the lock. We will point out its deficiencies, its contradiction to the text, and its glaring improprieties.

1. There are in his hypothesis many great deficiencies. It affords no explanation, either proper or figurative, of most of the circumstances of the history. It includes no account of the “ wilderness” into which Jesus was led; of the purpose for which he was led thither; of the leader who brought him thither ; of the time which he spent there; of the fast which he held ; of the “coming of the tempter ; of Christ's journey from the wilderness to the holy city; of his being set on a pinnacle of the temple ; of his journey from thence to an exceeding high mountain; of the view which he had of the kingdoms of the world; of the worship which some person requested ; or of the promise which that person made to him.

2. The comment contradicts the text. St. Matthew says that Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness. Mr. G. grants that he had received the Spirit; and cites the words “ led by the Spirit ;” but supposes him to be led only by his own thoughts : thoughts which could not be suggested by the Holy Spirit. The text names four times the devil as the tempter. Now this word was per. fectly unmanageable. Mr. G. knows that it means a slanderer, and he has not been able to find a place where the word is used, except where it is applied to some real being. As this word, therefore, would not bend to his purpose, he takes hold rather of the word Satan, which our Lord has once used, as more flexible. He could not make worldly thoughts into a slanderer, but he could suppose them an adversary.

3. Mr. G.'s “interpretation” has in it some glaring improprieties. According to him, the first thoughts" which arose in the mind of Jesus after he had received the Holy Spirit, and when he was under the special guidance of that Spirit, were “worldly thoughts." (Vol. i, p. 88.) Here is the abstract “evil principle!" The

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