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none can be taken from among others, to perform that which those others are every one obliged personally to attend to. But every priest properly so called (@lolice. UT ED avagwaww) is ordained, or appointed, to act for other men. He is set over a work in the behalf of those other men, from among whom he is taken, that he may take care of, and perform (TA APOS TOV Oɛov) things pertaining to God; or do the things that in behalf of men are to be done with God; that is (onban Sup) to pacify God, to make atonement and reconciliation, by offering (dugee nas durias) various sorts of gifts and sacrifices, according to God's appointment. This office, therefore,could have no place in the state of innocency; for it will not bear an accommodation of any part of this essential character of priesthood. I acknowledge, that in the state of uncorrupted nature, there would have been some (υπερ τε Θεε, τα προς τον ανθρωπον) to deal with others for God; for some would have been warranted and designed, in virtue of natural relations, to instruct others in the knowledge of God, and his will. They were to be (ureg ©£x) for God, or in his stead to them, to instruct them in their duty suitable to the law of their creation. But every one thus instructed, was, in his own name and person, to attend to the things of God, or what was to be performed on the behalf of men; for in reference to God, there would have been no common root or principle for men to stand upon. Whilst we were all in the loins of Adam, we stood all in him, and we also fell all in him; but (=Q? “ Tavleg nuceplov, Rom. v, 12;) so soon as any one had been born into this world, and should have a personal subsistence of his own, he was to stand by himself, and to be no more, as to his covenant interest, concerned in the obedience of his progenitors. Every one was in his own person to
discharge all duties of worship towards God. Nor is it conceivable, how any one could be taken out from the residue of men, to discharge the works of religion officially towards God for them, without its being to the prejudice of their right, and the hindrance of their duty. It follows, therefore, that the office of a priest, acting for men towards God was impossible in that state.
87. This is also the case with reference to sacrifices; because of the relation between them and the priesthood. Hence is that saying (in Bereshith Rabb.) "As is altar for sacrifice, so are the priests belonging to it.” By sacrifice, in this inquiry, we understand those that are properly so; for that which is proper
in every kind, is first. Nor is there any place for that which is improper, or metaphorical, unless something proper, from whence the denomination is taken, have preceded; for in allusion thereunto, doth the metaphor consist. Now, in the state of innocency nothing went before with respect to which any thing might be so called; as now our spiritual worship is, with respect to them, under the Old Testament.
Concerning these sacrifices, we may consider their nature and their end. A sacrifice is (13), Auriu, victima; sacrificium mactatum;) a slain or killed offering; yea, the first proper signification of the verb (137) is (mactavit, jugulavit, decollavit, occidet) to kill, to slay by effusion of blood, and the like. The substantive also (721, viz. mactatio, jugulatio,occisio,) conveys the same meaning. It is, therefore evident, that there neither is, nor can be, any sacrifice, properly so called, but what is made by the killing or slaying of the thing sacrificed. And the offering of inanimate things under the law, as of flour, or wine, or the fruits of the earth, were improperly so called, by virtue of their
conjunction with such as were properly so. They might be (nabay) offerings, or ascensions; but (nai) sacrifices they were not. And the nature of a sacrifice principally consists, not in the actings of the sacrificer, but, in the bringing of it to be slain, and in the slaying itself; all that followed, belonging to the religious manner of testifying thereby faith and obedi
This also discovers the proper and peculiar end of sacrifice, properly so called; especially such as might prefigure the sacrifice of Christ, to which our present discourse is confined. All such sacrifices must respect sin, and an atonement to be made for it. There never was, nor ever can be, any other leading end of the effusion of blood in the service of the living God. This the nature of the action, and the whole series of Divine institutions in this matter, fully manifest. For to what end should a man take another creature, in his power and possession, which also he might use to his advantage; and, slaying it, offer it up unto God, if not to confess a guilt of his own, or somewhat for which he deserved to die; and to represent a commutation of the punishment due unto him, by the substitution of another in his room, according to the will of God?
$8. Some have maintained, that if man had not sinned, yet the Son of God should have taken our nature on him. In answer to which, we shall here only say, that the assertion is (cypadov) unwritten (@vilypaQov) contrary to what is written, and (adoyov) destitute of any solid spiritual reason, for the confirmation of it; and, therefore, must needs be false. I say, that to ascribe to God a purpose of sending his Son to be incarnate, without respect to the redemption and salvation of sinners, is to enervate and contradict the whole design of revelation, and particular testimonies with
out number. Origen observed this; “If sin had not been, there would have been no necessity, that the Son of God should be made a lamb; but he had remained what he was in the beginning, (Deus Verbum) GOD THE WORD. But because sin entered into the world, and stood in need of a propitiation, which could not be but by a sacrifice, it was necessary that a sacrifice for sin should be provided."*
From what hath been spoken, it appears, that there was no decree, no counsel of God, concerning either priest or sacrifice, with respect to the law of creation, and the state of innocency. A supposition, therefore, of the entrance of sin, and what ensued thereon, the curse of the law, lie at the foundation of all real priesthood and sacrifice. Having made these previous remarks, it remains, that we proceed to declare the special origin of the priesthood of Christ in the counsel of God.
89. From what hath been discoursed, it is manifest, that the counsel of God, concerning the priesthood and sacrifice of his Son to be incarnate for that purpose, had respect to sin, and the deliverance of the elect from it. That which now lies before us, is, to inquire more expressly into the nature of the counsels of God in this matter, and their progress in execution. And
as, in this endeavor, we shall carefully avoid all curiosity, or vain attempts to be “wise above what is written;" so, on the other hand, study with sober diligence to improve what is revealed, to the end that we should so increase in knowledge, as to be established in faith and obedience.
God in the creation of all things, intended to manifest his nature in its being, existence, and essential properties; and the things themselves that were made, had, in their nature and order, such an impress of Divine wisdom, goodness, and power, as made manifest the original cause from whence they proceeded, Rom. i, 19 -21. Psal. xix, 1, 2, &c. Wherefore the visible works of God, man only excepted, were designed for no other end, but to declare in general, the nature, being, and existence of God. But in this nature (as we learn from his word of grace) there are three persons distinctly subsisting. And herein consists the most incomprehensible and sublime perfection of the Divine Being. This, therefore, was designed to be manifested and glorified in the creation of man: herein God would glorify himself, as subsisting in three distinct persons, and himself in each of these persons distinctly. And as this was not designed immediately in other parts of the visible creation, but in this, which was the complement and perfection of them; therefore, the first express mention of a plurality of persons in the Divine nature, is in the creation of man. And therein also are the personal transactions intimated, concerning his present and future condition.
*Homil. xxiv. in Ņumer.
$10. (I.) This, therefore, is what, in the first place, we shall evince: “That there were from all eternity, personal transactions in the Holy Trinity, concerning mankind, in their temporal and eternal condition, which first manifested themselves in our creation.
The first relation of the counsels of God, concerning this matter, we have, Gen. i, 26; (078 neys Dubx NDX9 1979 131907) Sya) “ And God said, let us make “MAN in our image according to our likeness; and let “THEM have dominion.” This was the counsel of God concerning the making of (378) Adam; that is, not that individual person who was first created, and so called; but of the species of creature which, in him, he now proceeds to create; for the word “Adam' is used