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1, 2. “ If any man fin, we have an advocate with “ the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous, and “ he is the propitiation for our sins ; and not “ for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole 66 world.”
i John ii. 21. 6 I have not written unto
you, because ye know not the truth, but beo cause know it, and that no lie is of the “ truth.” We may learn, what is the truth from ver. 22. where the apostle tells us, the lie opposite to it. " Who is a liar, but he “ that denieth that Jesus is the Chrift? He is « antichrist that denieth the Father and the « Son." The lie is a denying the Mefliahship or Sonship of Christ. The truth therefore is, that Jesus is the Christ, the son of the living God.
2 John 1, 2. “ The elder unto the elect lady “ and her children, whom I love in the truth, “ and not I only, but also all they that have “ known the truth; for the truth's sake which “ dwelleth in us, and shall be with us for ever.” Ver. 7. points out to what truth he refers. “ For many deceivers are entered into the world, 56 who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in " the Aesh.”
All these scriptures lead to one conclusion, that the only begotten of the Father was sent by him to this wretched world, to be the propitiation and advocate of finners : arid that a fullness of grace dwells in him, and power is given him over all flesh, that he might give eternal life to those given him of the Father. This doctrine is with peculiar propriety termed the truth. In it The prophecies of the Old Testament, and types of the law, have their true and full accomplish
ment. There is a glory in it, which demo!)strates its divine original, and that it is indeed the truth of God. By it Christianity is distinguished from all other religions. The belief of it constitutes men true Christians, and renews and sanctifies their hearts. It is the truth which. glorifies God, and saves man. And here I can freely adopt the words of Mr. Glass's Testimony, c. v. Sect. 2.
co It takes no more to “ make any man a subject of Christ's kingdom, “ but to be of this truth, and it requires no « less. In this truth, all Christ's subjects are one, however otherwise differenced.
They “ have different measures of light, whence dis“ ferences of opinion and practice will be found.
among them, and they are liable to error in
many cases, while they are in this world. But " they are every one of this truth, tho' they
may have different speculations about it, and « controversies of words, while the truth itself
reigns in all their hearts." Whether that ingenious writer, and those who stand connected with him in church fellowship, ftill adhere to these truly scriptural, and catholic principles, or whether they have since renounced them, is an historical question, which it is not my bufiness, and indeed, which I have neither ability nor inclination to discuss.
$5. In a variety of scriptures, faith is described as a persuasion of the Messiahship and Sonship of Christ. Matth. xvi. 16, 17.
6 Peter 66 answered and said, Thou art Christ the son of " the living God. And Jesus answered and said 6c unto him, Blessed art thou Simon Barjonah ; 66 for Aeth and blood hath not revealed it unto " thee, but my Father which is in heaven."
Ib. ver. 5
John vi. 69. “And we believe, and are sure, " that thou art that Christ, the son of the live " ing God.” John xi. 27. “ I believe that «6 thou the Christ the Son of God, 616 which should come into the world.” John xx. 31. “ But these are written, that ye might “ believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of • God, and that believing, ye might have life " through his name.
Aets viii. 37
c. And Philip faid, if thou believest with all thine “ heart, thou mayest. And he answered and « faid, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of 66 God.” i John v. 1. " Whosoever believeth " that Jesus is the Christ is born of God.”
66 Who is he that overcometh the 66 world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the “ Son of God.” Mr. Lock, in his Reasonable. ness of Chriftianity, has largely and unanswerably proved, that this proposition, Jesus is the Chrift, the Son of the living God, was the only one, the belief whereof was necefiary to constitute a Chriftian, and therefore was the grand doctrine preached by the ‘apostles to infidels, and in support of which both Christ and his apostles wrought their miracles. But as that great phiJofopher observes, Second Vindication of the Reasonableness of Chriftianity, folio edition, p. 583. • A
man cannot possibly give his assent to any af“ firmation or negation, unless he understands the
terms, as they are joined in that propofition, " and has a conception of the thing affirmed or “ denied, and also of the thing concerning « which it is affirmed or denied, as they are put “ together.” To believe therefore, that Jesus is the Christ the Son of the living God, cannot avail us, if by these terms we understand no
thing, or something different from what is fignified by them in the sacred oracles.
$ 6. The belief that Jesus is the Christ, which constitutes one a Christian, implies fomething more than belief that Jesus is a divine teacher. Nicodemus believed that Jesus was a teacher sent from God. And yet he was not born again, or a true Christian, for our Lord particularly applies to him, what he had before asserted in general, as to the necessity of regeneration. John jii. “ Marvel not, that I said unto thee, ye “ must be born again."
The meaning of the name Christ or anointed, may be learned from these places of the Old Testament, in which it is given to the promised Saviour. Such as i Sam. ii. 10. - The Lord " Thall judge the ends of the earth, and he “ Tall give strength unto his king, and exalt the horn of his anointed.” Pr. ii. 2, 6, 12. " The kings of the earth set themselves, and " the rulers take counsel together against the “ Lord, and against his anointed. Yet have I " set my king upon my holy hill of Zion. Kiss " the Son, least he be angry, and ye perish " from the way, when his wrath is kindled but
a little: blessed are all they that put their 66 trust in him."
Pf. xlv. 7.
66 Thou lovest " righteousness, and hateft wickedness : there“ fore God thy God hath anointed thee “ with the oil of gladness above thy fellows." Pf. lxxxiv.
9. 65 Behold O God our shield, and “ look upon the face of thine anointed.” Pr. cxxxii. 10. “ For thy servant David's sake, turn
not away the face of thine anointed." Ib. ver. 17, 18. “ There will I make the horn of 66 David to bud : I have ordained a lamp for
“ mine anointed. His enemies will I cloath “ with fhame: but upon himself shall his
crown Aourish.” Is. Ixi. 1–3. “ The spirit “ of the Lord God is upon me, because the « LORD hath anointed me to preach good “ tidings to the meek, he hath sent me to bind
up the broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to “ the captives, and the opening of the prison “ to them that are bound : To proclaim the " acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of
vengeance of our God, to comfort all that
mourn: To appoint unto them that mourn “ in Zion, to give unto them beauty for alhes, “ the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of “ praise for the spirit of heaviness, that they " might be called trees of righteousness, the
planting of the LORD, that he might be “ glorified.” Dan. ix. 24 - 26. “ Seventy “ weeks are determined upon thy people, and
upon thy holy city, to finish the transgreffion, “ and to make an end of fins, and to make " reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in “ everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the “ vifion and prophey, and to anoint the most 6. holy. Know therefore and understand, that “ from the going forth of the commandment " to restore and to build Jerusalem, unto the Mes“ fiah the prince, Ihall be seven weeks, and 66 threescore and two weeks the street shall be “ built again, and the wall even in troublous « times. And after threescore and two weeks “ Thal} Meffiah be cut off, but not for him( felf.” From these places it is evident, that the Son of God, as the glorious antitype of those anointed under the Old Testament, should: be anointed with the Holy Ghost, publith salva