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what one man would confer the same facts, taught the same upon another, by purchasing great truths, and its influence his liberty at an immense was essentially the same. It price; or, to the benefit which a bore the same sort of relation man, perfectly innocent himself, to Christianity in its present would confer upon one who state, as the twilight does to was guilty, by dymg in his noon day. stead. I am persuaded, my
Till the fulness of time, when dear friend, that you will find, Christ himself was to appear in by carefully noticing the phrase- the world, the will of God was ology of scripture, that the revealed only to the Jewish naunitarian view of the death of tion.
He established among Christ will not at all accord them his worship, and granted with it; that such an interpre- to them a succession of protation of it is greatly forced, is, phets. The worship of God, in fact, perfectly unnatural, and, under that dispensation, aboundthat, if ít be correct, it is imposed with sacrifices, and with sible to defend the sacred wri- various rites and observances, ters, from the charge of the which, viewed apart from the most wretched ambiguity, and Christian dispensation, appear, the most unwarrantable free- in a great degree, unsatisfactory dom of language, calculated to and unmeaning. But, from the lead the whole world into the New Testament, we learn that most egregious errors. I should these were shadows of good not, I think, hesitate to allow things to come; that they posa the doctrine of atonement to be sessed no independent efficacy, decided by this one considera- but were intended to prepare tion, the consideration arising for more glorious discoveries; from the general phraseology, that they shadowed forth the of the sacred writers.
great medium of a sinner's acBut another reason for be-cess to God, together with the lieving, that Christ died not as blessings of salvation, to be ena martyr, simply, but, as a sa- joyed through faith, in the great crifice for sin, and that, by his and only available sacrifice that death, he made a true and pro- was to be offered up in the end per atonement, arises from the of the world; that these early nature of the Levitical economy, institutions were appointed to and its connection with the Chris- maintain a salutary sense of tian dispensation. Upon this, guilt and danger in the minds the apostle argues at great of inen, and yet to support length in his epistle to the He- their hopes, and to assist their brews, which may be consi- faith in the great Redeemer who dered as a clear exposition of should be revealed in the fulthe Mosaic law, by which much ness of time. In short, we learn of its obscurity is done away. from various parts of the New The Jewish religion was not a Testament, and particularly distinct religion from Christia- from the Epistle to the Henity. It was Christianity, only brews, that the Jewish econoobscarely revealed. It implied mony was, strictly speaking,
typical. It was the shadow was not possible for the blood and figure of a spiritual system. of bulls and of goats to take It prefigured the magnificent away sin, because, between the glories, and the substantial pri- intrinsic worth of those sacrivileges, of the gospel dispensa- fices, and the demerit of sin, tion. Upon this kind of connec- there was no comparison. On tion between the ancient and the this account, the Jewish worá present dispensation, I may pre-shippers could place no desume, we are agreed, and, there-pendence upon them, and fore, no farther proof of it is would, therefore, be directed to necessary, than what may be look to a victim of sufficient contained in the passages of dignity and value to justify their scripture, that may be inciden- utmost dependence. These satally quoted in the remaining crifices were, however, efficapart of this letter.
cious, in cleansing from cereNow, nothing can be more monial pollutions, and, thereevident, than that, if there is this fore, prefigured that sacrifice relation subsisting between the that should cleanse from all sin. Mosaic and the Christian eco- But, if such was the nature nomy, there must be a general of the ancient sacrifices, and if resemblance traceable between they were symbolical of the the sign and the thing signified, death of Christ, (and that they the shadow and the substance, were, will not be denied, after the type and the antitype. And a careful and impartial perusal this resemblance is maintained of the Epistle to the Hebrews, in many declarations and allu- and other parts of scripture,) sions to be found in the New where, upon the principle of Testament. Thus, our Lord Christ dying merely as a marsays, As Moses lifted up the tyr, or with a view of setting us serpent in the wilderness, even an example, is the point of re80 must the Son of Man be lifted semblance between his death, up. So also the institutions of and those sacrifices? Where is the cities of refuge, and the sa- the analogy between the type, crifices of the scape-goát, and and the antitype? Upon the the paschal-lamb, and others, socinian hypothesis, there is no are referred to in the New Tes correspondence between them, tament, as pointing to the work either in their nature or design. of Christ, the offices he sus- That Christ was this antitype, tained, and the services he ren- and his death of the nature of dered the world. And, with a sacrifice for sin, is clearly eviour views of the death of Christ, dent from the following pas there is a general analogy and sages: “ He made his soul an correspondence between them. offering for sin; He poured out Now, the sacrifices of the Jew- his soul unto death; He was ish law were evidently symbo- wounded for our transgressions, lical of the death of Christ. and bruised for our iniquities. They could not, indeed, purge The Lord hath laid on him the the conscience from dead works iniquity of us all; and, by his to serve the living God. It stripes, we are healed.” Daniel
prophecied, that he should be reply to this objection is of a “ cut off, but not for himself.” different nature. If our Lord The psalmist, when prophesy- had, in clear and precise laning of the Messiah, represents guage, declared to the Jews, him as thus addressing the Fa- that, in putting him to death, ther : " Burnt offering, and they would only fulfil the end sacrifice for sin, thou didst not of his coming into the world, require; a body hast thou pre- they, contemplating him as an pared me: then said I, Lo! I impostor, would have defeated come, to do thy will, O God.” his design, and, however they
“ By the which will,” says might have imprisoned or otherthe apostle, “we are sanctified wise punished him, they would through the offering of the body not have put him to death. of Jesus, once for all.” The New Testament, however,
Now, if we believe Jesus to abounds with proofs of the be the Messiah predicted in the doctrine in question. It is eviOld Testament, we are bound dently alluded to by the Bapto believe what the prophets tist, when he pointed out Christ declared, concerning the design to the multitude, as “the Lamb of his incarnation. Christ ap- of God, which taketh away the pealed to what they had pre- sin of the world.” Here was a dicted, when he said to his dis- clear allusion to the lambs that ciples, “ All things must be were daily sacrificed in the fulfilled which were spoken in temple. But, unless Christ
; the prophets and in the psalms, by his death, atoned for sin, concerning me." But it ap- there was no propriety whatpears, from the foregoing pas-ever in the allusion. sages, that this could not have As to the writings of the been, had he not, by his death, apostles, they so abound with effected our deliverance from references to this doctrine, as to the power and consequences of make selections difficult
will only quote two or three The doctrine, now contend-passages.
« I determined to ed for, is clearly intimated by know nothing among you, save Christ, and more fully by his Jesus Christ, and him crucified. apostles. It has, indeed, been God forbid, that I should glory, objected, that this doctrine is save in the cross of our Lord not clearly revealed by Christ Jesus Christ. Jesus, that he himself. On this objection, I might sanctify the people with may make two remarks; first, his own blood, suffered without if our Lord did not formally the gate. Such a high priest declare it, he yet intimated it became us.... who needed not with sufficient clearness. This daily, as those high priests, to is evident from his language, offer up sacrifice, first for his which I have already quoted own sins, and then for the peo“The Son of Man came to give ple’s, for this he did his life a ransom for many." The offered up himself
. Neither And again," I lay down my life by the blood of goats and calves; for the sheep.” But the second but by his own blood, he en
tered ance, into the holy place," And they sung a new song, having obtained eternal redemp- saying, Thou art worthy to take tion for us. If the blood of the book, and to open the seals bulls and of goats, and the ashes thereof; for thou wast slain, of a heifer sprinkling the un- and hast redeemed us to God clean, sanctifieth to the purify- by thy blood. Worthy is the ing of the flesh, how much more Lamb that was slain, to receive shall the blood of Christ.... power, and riches, and wisdom, purge your conscience from and strength, and honour, and dead works, to serve the living glory, and blessing! Blessing, God?” Again it is said, “ He honour, glory, and power, be hare our sins, in his own body, unto him that sitteth upon
the on the tree. He was made sin throne, and unto the Lamb for for us, who knew no sin, that ever and ever. Salvation to our we might be made the righte- God which sitteth upon the ousness of God in him. He throne, and unto the Lamb. hath réconciled us to God with Unto him that loved us, and his own blood. Ye were not re-washed us from our sins in his deemed with corruptible things, own blood, unto him be glory." as silver and gold .... but with Now, if Christ was a mere man, the precious blood of Christ, as if he was only divinely comof a lamb without blemish and missioned to furnish us with a without spot.” If the limits perfect system of morality, and of this letter would allow a clearly to announce divine forcomment on the above passages, giveness, and a future life; such it would be unnecessary, as they language as the above is preare obviously conclusive upon posterous, and profane. But the point under consideration. if he was the Son of God, and, Nothing can be more evident, by his voluntary humiliation and from the foregoing language of death, procured our eternal rethe apostles, than that, whatever demption, our loftiest praises we are indebted for to the life fall infinitely short of our obliand instructions of Christ, our gations. chief obligations are owing to The only farther argument his death.
for the atonement which I shall I shall beg your attention state, is derived from the instionly to two points more, which tution of the Lord's supper. I have room but to mention, This was appointed as a com without any enlargement. The memoration of Christ's death; first is this: That the love and not of his instructions, not of rapture with which Christ is his example, but of his death; spoken of in the New Testa- and that, not as an irreparable ment, is inconsistent with the evil, for ever to be lamented, idea of his living merely as an but as an event, upon which, instructor, and dying merely as as it procured our redemption a martyr. Attend only to the from sin and from misery, we adorations that it is declared are bound to reflect with gratiare paid to him by glorified tude and joy. The bread, acsaints in the heavenly world.cording to the words of the in= VOL. VII,
stitution, is emblematical of his | end; and no blood, of superior, body broken for us; and the quality, need have been shede, wine, of his blood shed for many But the apostle declares, that for the remission of sins; and, it was not possible that such sain eating the bread, and drink-crifices should take away sin. ing the cup, we are said to Again, a ransom implies an shew the Lord's death till he equivalent, for the person or come.—I am at an utter loss to thing redeemed. If there conceive, how the socinians must be a proportion between can, consistently, attend to this the excellency of Christ's sacriinstitution. The bread repre-fice, and the demerit of sin; sents Christ's body broken for but the latter is infinite; so us; and the wine, his blood shed therefore must be the former. for the remission of sins. But And if the principles laid down they have no such views of his in the last letter are true, you death as these words imply. will perceive, that a sacrifice, This institution commemorates of no less value than that of the his death. But on their prin- Son of God, would so exhibit ciples we are benefited chiefly, the evil of sin, and so magnify if not exclusively, by his life. the divine law, as to justify God In short, they can never attend in receiving into his favour, to this ordinance, in the spirit those who plead, with humble in which it was appointed; and and believing hearts, the atoneI consider, that if other argu- ment of his Son.
Much more ments were wanting, this insti- might be added; but, I fear, I tution would, of itself, suffi- have already exceeded the prociently establish the doctrine of per limits of a letter like this. the atonement.
In my next, I intend to make a Thus, my dear friend, I have few observations connected with stated such arguments as occur this subject, that I have not to me, and that I can bring room to include in this paper ; within the compass of a letter, and to consider the respective to shew the consistency of the tendencies of the two opposite atonement with the divine per- systems. That you may receive fections, and with the testimony divine assistance in all
your of scripture. I had intended to quiries, is the earnest prayer
of have remarked, at some length,
Your's, affectionately. on the efficacy of the sacrifice of Christ, arising from his divi
WALDENSIAN CHRISTIANS. nity; but, on that point, I must be content with a very few words. It certainly does not “ Before the rise of Luther derive its efficacy merely from and Calvin, there lay concealed, divine appointment; for, on that in almost all the countries of principle, any sacrifice would Europe, persons who adhered have availed, and intrinsic value tenaciously to the principles of is of no account. In which the modern Dutch Baptists.”case, the blood of bulls, and of Mosheim's Eccl. Hist. cent. xvi. gouts, would have answered the sect. iii. part ü. ch. iii.