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outward actions, and thereby secure civil virtue, but did not relate to the inward principles or motives of action whether good or bad, and therefore could not regulate the affections, restrain the vicious desires and inclinations of the mind, he adds, that is what “St. Paul means as often as he declares the weakness or insufficiency of this law, to enforce or secure a state of inward real virtue or righteousness with respect to God and conscience.' p. 27. For the apostle by saying the law (if taken of the moral law) is weak, doth not mean as this writer insinuates, that its precepts relate only to the outward practice, and not to the inward dispositions of the heart and soul; for he expressly affirms that it is spiritual, and doth relate to the inward desires and affections: but he intends to show that the law was in itself unable to justify men, or entitle them to pardon and acceptance with God, and give them a right to eternal life (which is what he means by justification), because it could only justify those that obeyed its precepts, and no man doth perfectly obey it. So that it is weak, as he expresses it, through the flesh; that is, it is unable to justify men, because of the present weakness and corruption of human nature ; whereby it comes to pass that in many instances they fall short of the pure and perfect obedience there required, and therefore their acceptance and justification must be wholly owing to the free grace and mercy of God, which is most clearly and gloriously dispensed and manifested through Jesus Christ in the gospel dispensation.
The passages this writer himself in the person of Theophanes refers to, clearly prove, that the law of Moses relates not merely to the outward actions, or external behaviour of persons in society, but to the inward dispositions of the heart, Deut. xii. 4,5: “ Hear, O Israel, the Lord thy God is one Lord ; and thou shalt love the
; Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.' This excellent and comprehensive command, which takes in the sum of real vital religion and piety is often repeated in the law, see Deut. x. 12, xi. 13. The other passage he cites is from Lev. xix. 17, 18: “Thou shalt not avenge or bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the Lord.' Where they are not only forbidden to avenge themselves, but even to entertain a secret grudge against their neighbours, and are commanded to love them as themselves. And this is enforced by this consideration, 'I am the Lord,' who search the hearts, and know your inward disposition, and will reward and punish you accordingly. And indeed, as God himself in that polity, and under that peculiar form of government, was regarded as in a special and immediate manner their king and judge, who perfectly knew their hearts and most secret dispositions, so they were taught by Moses still to have a regard to God in their obedience, and to expect rewards and punishments from him, not merely according to their outward actions, but the inward dispositions of their minds. And as to their outward actions, in this as well as other laws, they fell under
the jurisdiction of the magistrate. There were open punishments to be inflicted for public notorious offences, and evil practices against the good of the society.
Many instances might be produced besides those now referred to which plainly show, that the law of Moses reached not merely like the laws of other nations to men's outward actions and behaviour in society, but was designed to govern and regulate their inward affections and dispositions of soul. Thus Lev. xix. 17, in the words immediately preceding those last cited, it is said, “ Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart; thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour ; and not suffer sin upon him.' A most remarkable passage, the like of which precept can scarce be found in any other law: it is there reckoned a hating our brother in our heart, if we have not such a regard for him as to put us upon tender affectionate admonitions, when we see him engaged in any wrong practice. In the precepts given the people concerning their distributing to the necessities of their poor and indigent neighbours, they are not only commanded to give, but to give from a charitable disposition, not to be grieved when they give,' Deut. xv. 10. They are commanded not only to observe God's statutes and judgments, but to keep them with all their heart, and with all their soul,' and that as they expect that God would bless and favour them, see Deut. xi. 13-18, xxvi. 16. The repentance required of them is expressed by turning to the Lord their God with all their heart, and with all their soul, Deut. xxx. 10, iv. 29, and they are required to circumcise the foreskin of their heart, Deut. x. 16, which is explained, Deut. xxx. 6, by their loving God with all their heart, and with all their soul, that they may live. Nothing can be plainer from all these passages, to which many more might easily be added, than that the law of Moses insists upon the necessity of real inward religion, and right affections and dispositions of heart. And to such an obedience as this it is that life and happiness is there promised. And we may therefore conclude, that under the life there promised, a promise of future happiness is couched and included, though not directly expressed. The author's argument in this case may be turned against him, he argues that because the law had only the sanctions of temporal prosperity and adversity; therefore it could only relate to outward actions, and not to the inward principles and motives of action, p. 27. On the contrary, it may reasonably be concluded, that because the law evidently reached unto, and was designed to regulate the inward principles and dispositions of the heart, and indispensably required inward vital religion and godliness, therefore the promises, at least, the general ones of the Lord's being their God, &c., were understood to extend farther than merely to outward temporal prosperity and adversity; and that under and together with the promise of temporal blessings, those of a spiritual and eternal nature were signified, though not directly expressed. And I shall afterwards show that good men, under that dispensation all along had a view to the future happiness, as the reward of
true religion and righteousness; and took the promises of temporal blessings not exclusively of, but as additional to, or as the types and pledges of the spiritual and eternal rewards of another world, which were all along believed among that people. But this writer farther objects, that as this law could only
' reach the outward practice and behaviour of men in society, so it
defective even in that, as providing no sufficient remedy against any such immoralities, excesses, and debaucheries, in which a man might not only make a fool or a beast of himself, without directly hurting his neighbour or injuring the society,' p. 27. What he means by these excesses and debaucheries I do not well know. Adultery and fornication are strongly and expressly forbidden in the law. And as to drunkenness and intemperance which he seems to have particularly in view, I think that passage, Deut. xxix. 19, 20, fairly and strongly implies a prohibition and condemnation of it. Where it is said concerning the man 'that
‘ blesseth himself in his heart, saying, I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagination of mine heart, to add drunkenness to thirst, and that the Lord will not spare him, but the anger of the Lord, and his jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him,' &c., so Deut. xxi. 20. When the parents are ordered to bring a rebellious son to be punished : drunkenness and gluttony are particularly mentioned, as the crimes whereof he is accused before the magistrates ; they shall say unto the elders of his city,' this our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice, he is a glutton and a drunkard :? this is here represented as one of the worst characters; and then
; it is added, ver. 21, “And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones that he die.' When the priests are most strictly commanded to drink neither wine nor strong drink lest they should die,' when they went into the tabernacle, that they might put difference between holy and unholy, between clean and unclean; and that they might teach the children of Israel all the statutes which the Lord had commanded,' Lev. x. 9, 10, 11. Though the prohibition taken in its utmost rigour, as it extended to a total abstinence from all wine and strong drink, only obliged them whilst they were actually ministering in the sanctuary : yet the reason of the command sufficiently intimated the necessity of a constant sobriety and temperance in their whole conversation, that this was what God expected and required of all, and that drunkenness was what he highly condemned and disapproved. The same might be gathered from that particular constitution concerning the Nazarites, who being peculiarly devoted to God, were to separate themselves from wine and strong drink' during the time of their vow, Numb. vii. 3. Which was designed to let the people know how pleasing sobriety and temperance was to God, and that as they were all to be a peculiar people, holy unto the Lord,' so they should carefully avoid all intemperance and excess.
But what this writer seems to lay the principal stress upon is, * that the obligation of the law with respect to civil or social vir
tue, extended no farther than to the members of that society : that is, to those who were of the natural seed of Abraham, or such as by proselytism were incorporated with them, and allowed to live amongst them ; but though they were obliged to live in peace and amity with one another, or within themselves, yet they were put into a state of war with all the rest of the world. They were not only left at liberty, but encouraged and directed by Moses himself to extend their conquests as far as they could, and to destroy by fire and sword, any or every nation or people that resisted them, and would not submit to become their subjects and tributaries upon demand. And after mentioning their being commanded to extirpate the inhabitants of Canaan, he adds, that with regard to their farther conquest of other nations, for which they were designed, and for which their plan of government was contrived, their commission from Moses was, to offer them terms of peace, in which their lives were to be spared upon condition of their becoming subjects and tributaries to them; and in case of refusal, they were to destroy all the males, and to take the women captives, and to seize upon all, their wealth, and proper goods, and cattle, as lawful plunder, Deut. xx. 10–18. And that thus it is evident, that the people of Israel, upon the very constitution and fundamental principles of Moses, were not to maintain any peace or amity with any other nation or people, but on condition of submitting unto them as their subjects, slaves, and tributaries, under such terms as they should think fit to impose,' pp. 28, 29, and again p. 42, he saith, that ‘Moses commands all idolatry to be exterminated by fire and sword, not only in Canaan, but in all the rest of the world, so far as his people should have it in their power.' And p. 359, that' the Jewish state, or the religion of Moses was founded in the principles of persecution, in which idolatry was to be exterminated, and idolaters to be destroyed by fire and sword; and he there observes that the proselytes of the gate, that were not obliged to be circumcised, or to submit to the ceremonial law, yet were obliged absolutely to separate themselves from all idolaters, or people of other religions; which separation was to regard all family intercourse of eating and drinking together, and even alliance in war, or any other conjunction of interest, though it should appear ever so necessary for mutual defence, and self-preservation. He adds, “that this strict and rigid separation from all the rest of the world, and abjuring their friendship or alliance as idolaters, is so closely interwoven with all the laws of Moses, that it may be called the fundamental constitution of that state or body politic. This Jewish lawgiver thought that it would be impossible to keep idolatry and false religion out of the society, but by punishing it with death ; and that true religion might be promoted and secured by force,' p. 360, and again, p. 373. That 'this was the nature and genius of the Jewish religion, in which the knowledge and worship of the only true God was to be promoted and secured by force and persecution, and by rooting out idolatry, and destroying idolaters by fire and sword.'
I have put these several passages together that we may collect the author's sentiments on this head, in one view, and in their full force.
As to the first thing he observes, “that the obligations of the law with respect to civil or social virtue, extended no farther than to the members of that society, and that though they were obliged to live in amity with one another, yet they were put into a state of war with all the rest of the world :' this is a very unfair representation. It must be considered indeed, that the law of Moses, though of divine institution and authority, never was intended to be an universal law obligatory on all mankind, but was peculiarly designed for that one nation, to whom it was immediately directed and published ; and it was in the nature of a special covenant between God and them. It must be expected therefore that directly, and in the first place, it should prescribe how the members of that society should behave among themselves; and if it prescribed a just, a friendly, and a benevolent conduct in society, this must be owned to be highly laudable. And in this respect the laws of Moses are admirable, and wonderfully fitted to engage those to whom it was given to all the offices of kindness, and brotherly affection towards one another. The obligation it lays upon them not to oppress the poor, nor to detain from the poor debtor his pledge, if it was any thing that was the necessary means of his subsistence, or maintaining his family: the commands given them to lay aside all enmity and revenge, and not bear a secret grudge against their neighbour, nor refuse assistance even unto their enemies, but to be ready to do them kind offices, Exod. xxii. 25-27 : xxiii. 4, 5; Deut. xxiv. 10, 13. The kindness and equity with which they were obliged to treat their servants, to whom they are often urged by this consideration, that they "themselves had been servants and bondmen in the land of Egypt,' Exod. xxi. 26, 27; Deut. v. 15; xv. 12–15; xvi. 11, 12; xxiii. 15, 16; xxiv. 14, 15; the many precepts obliging them to pity and assist the poor and distressed, and to treat them, not with haughty contempt and disdain, but with all kindness and tenderness, and to give to them liberally and without grudging, Lev. xxv. 35; Deut. xv: 7—11. The injunctions laid upon them not to take advantage of any person's bodily weakness and infirmities for abusing them, not to lay a stumbling block before the blind, nor to curse the deaf, Lev. xix. 14; Deut. xxvii. 18. These and other precepts of the like nature show such an equity, such a spirit of tenderness and humanity in the law of Moses, as can scarce be paralleled in any laws that were given to any other nation.
Nor was this to be confined merely to those of their own nation or society. They are very frequently commanded to show kindness to strangers, and not only not to vex and oppress them, but to deal kindly and tenderly towards them. The Jews themselves observe that the precepts prescribing a just and kind conduct to strangers are inculcated one and twenty times in their law. They are commanded to love the strangers as them. sclves,' Lev. xix. 34. And to love them not merely as they were