Page images


of the trinity in the divine unity. This I take the present opportunity of repeating, lest fuch names as his, should oversway your judgments.

More extraordinary still, is what immediately follows in Dr. Horne, where he duces, I am alpha and omega, the first and the last, Rev. i. 11. as a proof of Christ being the most high God; and to corroborate it, says; • Upon this passage, which is • found Rey. i. 11, Dr. Doddridge has the • following note: “that these titles (which occur just above in ver. 8.(1)) should be repeated so soon in a connection which de·monstrates they are given to Christ, will appear very remarkable, whatever sense be

given to the 8th verse. The • drawn in the preceding note upon it, would

have been strong, wherever such a passage as this had been found: but its immediate • connection with this, greatly strengthens * it. And I cannot forbear recording it, s that this text has done more than



« in

The argument

[ocr errors]

(1) The 8th verse is. I am alpha and cmega, the beginning and the ending, faith the Lord; which is, and which was, and which is to come.


in the bible, towards preventing me from ' giving into that scheme, which would 'make our Lord Jesus Christ no more than

a deified creature.'

Thus we have here a confession, that this passage was what principally contributed to make this celebrated presbyterian divine regard Christ as the most high God, and not a creature; and it is brought in by the dean of Canterbury as what confirms him in the fame belief.

But unluckily for them, this passage, on which they both build so much, is a nullity; owing to inadvertence, or a designed interpolation of some transcriber, and not from the pen

of the sacred writer. One wonders, that the proofs exhibited by Mill, and Bengelius, of the spuriousness of this passage, had no effect on Dr. Doddridge. But Dr. Horne's inattention is more extraordinary, who has had an opportunity of knowing what has been further produced to thew that it is not genuine, by Wetstein, and Griesbach. This last most learned man, though himself a believer in the trivity and the divinity of Christ, has had


[ocr errors]

the courage and integrity, in his valuable edition of the Greek N. Teftament, to leave out this paffage, as also the fpurious text of the three witnesses, 1 John.v.7. as not being any part of scripture. I put Wetstein's and Griesbach's authorities relating to it in the(g) margin, whence


see that the passage on which Dr. Horne builds so much, is not in the Alexandrian, Vatican, and royal Parifian manuscript-copies of the New Testament, nor in several others; that it has no place in several of the most ancient versions of the New Testament; and on these accounts has been very properly omitted in several printed editions of the Greek Testament.

Dr. Horne is no less in error in affirming Christ to be the word spoken of in the preX 2


(8) « AC 2. 4. 8. 9. 10. II. 13. 14. 17. 18. 19. 25 * 26. 27. 28. Editio Complut. Plantin. Genev. Bengelii. "Versio Vulg. Syr. Copt. Armen. Æthiop. Arethas. Ano dreas. probante J. Millio.' Wetstein in loc.

* ABC. 2. 9. 10. 14. al. 13. Ed. Syr. (non Arr.) Copt. Æth. Arm. Vulg. Areth. Andr. MS. Primas.' Griesbach.

[ocr errors]

preme God.

face of John's gospel, and as such, the fu

God. For this term, logos, word, might more properly be translated, reason, wisdom; and it is not here (nor indeed any where) (9) a name of Christ, but an attribute of God, his wisdom; and God is thus denominated by his wisdom, his word, or power ; which is a phrase of speech very frequent with the hebrews, the word of the LORD, the word of God, the wisdom of God, signifying God himself. And so in Proverbs viii. Solomon speaks of wisdom as a person that was with God before and when he created the world; intending thereby only to signify in a more lively animated manner, that God made all things and governs them by the most perfect wisdom.


(9) A controversial writer of the times, having asserted, that “in Rev. xix. 13. Christ is termed the word of God; and that every one knows, that he is more frequently lo filed in the uncontested writings of St. John than ellewhere.” Dr. Lardner remarks : “ Though Mr. Twells Liys, every one knows this; I must entreat him to make an exception for me, till somebody has shewn me the several texts of St. John's uncontested writings, where Chrift is fo called: for, at present, I do not know one."

Lardner's Credibility, p. ii. vol. iv. p.71.

But in the second part of this work, you will find this proem of John's gospel, or what he says as from himself, in the beginning of his gospel, not to be descriptive of Christ, but of almighty God himself, as the fole creator of all things, and dispenser of light and knowlege, in different ways, and at different times, to his creatures, but last of all, in the fullest manner, by Jesus Christ.

The word, proceeds the apostle, ver. 14. (i.e. not Christ, but the divine wisdom), was made, or was a man, a mortal creature: for that is the meaning of the term flesh (s)

X 3 (s) Flesh is put for man as mortal. Pf. lx. v. 2. If.xl. 5, 6. Matt. xxiv. 22. Gal. ii. 16. See also John xvii. 2. i Cor. i. 29, &c. &c. The language therefore commonly used, viz. God incarnate, the word incarnate, the incarnation of Christ, is as gross and disgusting, as it is wholly unscriptural; as if the Divine Being, or Christ considered as the first of angelic beings, were shut up in a case of flesh and blood. Such unwarranted expressions therefore, however venerable for their antiquity, ought to be given up. St. Paul declares

distinctly, 1 Cor. xv. Flesh and blood cannot enter into the kingdom of God. Dr. Horne however, such are his prejudices, sends the Almighty himself to heaven, clothed in Aesh and blood. God incarnate, (says he) is gone up into

that holy place not made with hands; the everlasting doors of heaven are opened for the king of glory to enter, and repoffefs his antient throne,' &c. Comment. en Psalın


xlvii. 5.

« PreviousContinue »