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er (2) either to repel the assaults of his enemies, or to counteract the influence of the unworthy members of his church. But if the church of Christ was to be established on this earth (3), if she is to continue and to increase (4) as long as the present state (5) of mankind lasts, and if the purity and multitude of her members are to be augmented by the conversion and accession of such (6) as were formerly inimical to her interests and oppressive to her comfort and disgraceful (7) to her
characterthen neither death, ο εσχατος εχθρος the last enemy (1 Cor. 15: 26.) and the mortality of the human family (8), nor the other enemies and obstacles by which the peace of the church was disturbed, can possibly be immediately removed (9). But in due time (10), when it shall be accordant with the divine purposes (11), they will doubtless be removed, and Christ shall rule with undisputed sway over all his prostrate (12) foes. But even now he does rule in the midst of his enemies (13). He restrains (14) their power, when necessary, and overrules their iniquitous machinations to the prosperity of the whole (15), or to the benefit of 'individual members (16) of his church.
I. The church formerly defended by miracles.--Acts 13: 8–11. Elymas the magician who opposed christianity suddenly became blind, at the rebuke of Paul. Acts 5: 19 &c. An angel opens the prison for the apostles. 12: 16 &c, An angel leads Peter out of the prision. 5:1-11, The sudden death of Ananias and Sapphira. 1 Cor. 11: 30—32. Diseases at Corinth, in consequence of the abuse of the Lord's Supper. 1 John 5: 16, αμαρτια προςίθανατον a sin which brought a mortal disease on the transgressor. James 5: 15. At the commencement of the christian church, the first christians were sometimes punished for great crimes by extraordinary diseases ; but, if those sins were not sins unto death, auaptiai roos favatov, they could be cured by those who possessed the gift of healing sicknesses, by means of the prayer of faith.
II. Acts 18: 10, εγω ειμι μετα σου, και ουδεις επιθησεται σοι του κακωσαι σε I am with you, and no one shall lay hold of you to hurt you. Thus said Christ to Paul at Corinth. 1 Cor. 5: 3—5. Paul was resolved by the authority of Christ to inAlict a mortal disease (napadovvai to gatavqa) on the incestuous person, even in the assembly, in which, though absent himself, he would work by the power of Christ, συν τη δυναμει του κυριου ημων Ιησου Χριστου. .
III. Matth. 13: 38, ó ayoos EOTIV ò xoguos the field is the world.
IV. Matth. 13: 31–33. Eph. 4: 12.
V. Matth. 13: 39, οθερισμος η συντηλεια του αιωνος εσ. tu the harvest is the end of the world. comp. 28: 20.
VI. Gal. 1: 13, &c, the conversion of Paul, who had persecuted the church. Eph. ch. 2, Conversion of the Jews and Gentiles in general. Tit. 3: 3, nuev note avontol, ATELIELS, thavWusvou *.1.1. for we were ourselves sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived &c. 1 Pet. 2: 12. Exhortation to lead such a life that the Gentiles might be gained over to christianity by it, ένα δοξασωσι τον θεον εν ημερα επισκοπης that they may glorify God in the day of visitation (retribution), 3:1, 2. Christian wives may by their conduct gain over their husbands who
1 Vide Dissert. concerning the Spiritual Gifts N. Repert. Pt. 3, p. 317 &c. where this version is defended.
2 Vide Dissert. de sensu historico, p. 8. Opusc. Vol. I. p. 10. 3 Vide Diss. in Epp. ad Corinth, Note 181.
are not christians. 2 Τim. 2: 25, μηποτε δου ο θεος τους αντιδιατιθεμενους μετανοιαν εις επιγνωσιν αληθειας perhaps God will give repentance to the opposers, to the acknowledgment of the truth. 2. Cor. 13: 10, την εξουσιαν εδωκε μοι ο κυριος εις Olxodoun the Lord gave to me authority for edification.
VII. 1 Thess. 2; 14 &c. 2 Thess. 1: 4, 6. 1 Cor. 16: 9. 1 John 2: 18–26. 4: 1-6. 1 Cor. 3: 17. Gal. 5:9 &c. 15. 2 Cor. 12:20 &c. Eph. 4:25. 5:18. 1 Thess. 5: 14. 2 Thess. 3: 11-15. 1 Tim. 3: 3/5, 8, 10. 5:11--15, 24. Tit. 1: 6 &c. 2: 3-5. 10, 15. In these passages are mentioned persecutors, opposers, false teachers, and seducers, and sins and offen
every kind, among those who were at the time breth
Μatth. 13: 41, συλλεξουσιν εκ της βασιλειας αυτου παντα τα σκανδαλα και τους ποιουντας την ανομιαν they shall gather out of his kingdom all seducers and iniquitous persons.
VIII. If true christians ceased to be mortal, they could no longer live on this earth and let the light of their example shine before other men. They could no longer quotNDES EV xodum Elvai be lights in the world (Phil. 2: 15 &c.), and hajTTELV EMπροσθεν των ανθρωπων shine before men (Matth. 5: 16.), παρaxchew exhort (Heb. 10: 25), ETLOXOTELV, take care (Heb. 12: 15).
IX. Otherwise, those wicked must also be removed, who will
yet reform and become ornaments of the church ;2 and thus would much wheat be weeded out with the darnel. Matth. 13: 29.'
X. 1 Cor. 15: 26, εσχατος εχθρος καταργείται θανατος the last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. Matth. 13: 40–43. 49 &c. The wicked shall at the end of the world, be banish
1 See Commentary on Heb. on the two last
ed from the kingdom of God. 2 Thess. 1: 5—10. Comp. $ 61, 97. Ill. 3.
XI. Christ has nothing to fear from the enemies of the church in regard to his own dignity ; although, for important reasons,
he does not choose to make them feel his power more sensibly at present. Therefore, although the subjection of all things to Christ is, as yet, only partial, it by no means follows that it shall not be perfect hereafter.
ΧΠ. Μatth. 22, 43 &c, καθου εκ δεξιων μου, έως αν θα τους εχθρους σου υποποδιον των ποδων σου sit at my right hand, , until I make thy enemies thy footstool. Comp. Dissert. de notione regni coelestis, sv.
XIII. Psalm 110: 2, 722777777 rule thou in the midst of thine enemies. Consult the Commentary on Heb. 5: 5. Note k, where the arguments are stated which prove that the 110th Psalm refers not to David but to Christ.
1[The principal arguments from which it is evident that this Psalm refers to the Saviour, are the following.-I. The express declaration of Jesus himself, in his conversation with the Pharisees, recorded in Matth. 22: 42—45. This testimony must be decisive to every true believer in the divinity of the Saviour, to every Christian. But supposing for a moment, that the Lord Jesus had not decided the point in question, and that the application of the psalm, must be ascertained from other circumstances; we should be led to the same result by the subsequent considerations.-For, II. This psalm was, as far as we know, universally believed, in and before the time of Christ, to be the production of David. But David could not possibly speak the language of this psalm and allude to himself; hence it is agreed, that the psalm does not refer to the Messiah, David could not have been its author; for no personage existed, who bore to him the relations called for by the psalm. But the Jewish nation who lived 1800 years nearer the time of David than we, were certainly better judg. es of the historical question, Who was its author ?-III. The Jews in the days of our Saviour believed that this psalm referred to the Messiah. This is evident from Matth. 23: 46.-IV. The Jewish writers themselves formerly explained it as referring to the Messiah. V. Although yo priest, may signify, in general, a person who has special access to the King or to God ; it cannot be proved that this appellation was ever given to an in. dividual, merely because he was resident in the vicinity of the king or of the sanctuary. Hence the residence of David on Mount Zion, near the temple, could not justify its
to hir as some have conten
XIV. Jesus restrains the power of his enemies, when necessary. It is evident from the downfall of the Jewish state, that Christ can restrain the power of his enemies, in other ways than by such extraordinary acts as are related in Ill. 1. That event answered a determinate object for Christ; as is evident from the prophecies by which it was foretold. In the prophecy Matth. 16: 28, Jesus refers to the destruction of Jerusalem ; from which those of the apostles who were then living, should infer the efficiency of his dominion; and, Matth. 10:23, ews αν ελθη ο υιος του ανθρωπου, the judgment inflicted on those haters of Christianity, the Jews, is represented as the reappearance of Christ. Apology for the Revelation, p. 336. And in Matth. 23: 34 &c, 1 Thess. 2: 15 &c, Christ declares the destruction of Jerusalem to be the punishment of the persecutors of christians. Compare $ 39. Ill. 5. This destruction of the Jewish state, was to be a proof, that, although Christ may not immediately come to the aid of his people, although he may not punish his enemies instantly ; he nevertheless observes their conduct, and in due time will, by political changes, or some other means, frustrate their designs.
XV. Jesus overrules the machinations of his enemies for the good of his church. This we find exemplified in the following instances, which are stated in the Acts of the apostles, 8:1.
ded.-VI. The personage who is described as yo priest, in the 4th verse, is in the same verse declared to resemble Melchisedeck: but it was a peculiarity of that ancient king of Salem, that he was not only king, but also at the same time, priest of the Most High ; which was absolutely prohibited to the later occupants of Mount Zion.-VII. The 6th and 7th verses are irreconcilable with the supposition, that the psalm refers to David. As the illustration of this historical argument would require considerable detail, we refer the reader to the work of Dr. Storr. S.]
i Vide Dissert. de notione regni coelestis, p. 10 &c. Opuscul. Acad. Vol. I, p. 261 &c.
2 μακροθυμεί, i. . βραδυνει (αναμενει) «he tarries with reference to the righteous."
3 See New Apol. for Rev. p. 308_334.