Графични страници
PDF файл


Christian Repository. state distinct from the earthy, which I can find any account of in the scriptures, or can see any just reason to believe in. When a member of human nature dies un leavened, he is destitute of any identified immortality and can never again exist unless he is recomposed, or reformed by the hand of God.


P.S. Mr. Loveland is requested to accompany the publication of this with such remarks as may tend to expose the error of the premises, if, in his opinion, there be such error attached to them.

J. B. This request will be attended to in a future number.


From the (London) Universal Theo. Magasine.


OBSERVATIONS ON JOHN XII. 40, 41. "He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that

they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them. These things said Esaiaš, when he saw his glory, and spake of him." The person spoken of in this passage, whose glory Isaiah saw, is manifestly Jesus Christ, as is clear from the connexion in which the words stand; and the glory spoken of, is that into which he entered after his suffer. ings, when he sat down on the throne of the Majesty in the heavens. This is clear from the vision in which he is represented as possessing regal dignity, sitting upon a throne high and lifted up, exalted far above all principality and power, having a name above every name, being appointed the Sovereign of the Universe, the Judge of the quick and the dead and the Dispenser of immortality and eternal life.

That the prophecy refers to the Messiah and his kingdom under the gospel, is also evident from the preceding words, for the Evangelist, speaking of the unbelief of the Jews, notwithstanding Jesus Christ had done so many miracles amongst them, assigns this reason for it, “Therefore they could not believe, because Esaias said, He hath blinded their eyes,” &c.

The passage referred to by the Evangelist is a vision, (for so Isaiah's prophecy is called, chap. i. 1.) in which was represented to him the future exaltation and glory of the Messiah, and in which he was instructed to foretell that he would be rejected by the Jewish nation. The vision here referred to is that which is contained in the 6th chapter of his prophecy, as is plain from the quotation before us. Let us now advert to the vision itself.

In the first verse of that chapter, the prophet says, "I saw also the Lord,” Adonai, by which title Jesus Christ is spoken of in distinction from Jehovah, Ps. cx. 1. "Jehovah said (to Adonai.) to my Lord, sit thou on iný right hand,” which refers to the saine event with this prophesy, to the exaltation of Jesus after his resurrection from the dead ; and perfectly accords with the assertion of the Evangelist, that Isaiah saw Christ's glory. “I saw the Lord, says he, seated upon a throne, high and lifted up." "I overcame, (says Jesus, Rev. ii. 21.) and am set down with my Father in his throne.” Associated with him in his kingdom and glory, "Who is the blessed and only potentate, the King of kings and Lord of lords;" so high and lifted up is Jesus Christ.

"And his train or skirts, or according to the Septuagint, his glory filled the temple.” His train probably is meant to represent the glory of his Majesty, and the fulness of wisdom, power, and grace, which resides in him. “In him are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge." "It pleased the Father, that in him should all fulness dwell.” “He is exalted that he might fill all things.” And we know that the temple of God, under the reign of the Messiah, is the church. The apostle, writing to believers, says, “Ye are the temple of the living God." This temple his train fills.

"In him dwells all the fulness of the Godhead bodily," says the same apostle. “And ye are mereumpapevov, filled by him.” “Of his fulness," says the Evangelist, "have '. all we received, and grace for grace." "Above it,the prophet adds, “stood the Seraphim, each one had six wings," &c. or round about them, as it is in the Septuagint. These are represented as bis attendants, probably angels, who are put in subjection to him, and are all of them his ministers "sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation." “These cried one to another, and said, holy, holy, holy, is Jehovah of hosts, the whole earth is full of his glory." The Angels, at the incarnation of the Messiah, sang, "Glory to God in the highest,” and upon his exaltation to the throne of the kingdom, the Seraphim are represented as celebrating the holiness and glory of Jehovah.

Never was there such manifestation of the glory of God, as in the administration of Jesus Christ, “who is the brightness of his glory, and whose Gospel is the glorious Gospel of the blessed God;" the things of which the Angels desire to look into, while they contemplate its power and influence, as filling the whole earth with the glory of Jehovah.

Thus doth Isaiah describe what he saw of the glory of Christ.

This vision overwhelmed the prophet, these splendors made him deeply sensible of his own impurity, and caused him to cry out, “Wo is me, for I am undone, because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips, for mine eyes bave seen the King Jehovah of hosts." Unusual appearances of the divine power and glory have generally produced this effect; so when John had a vision of Jesus in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks, he fell at his feet as dead ;” and Manoah when he had seen an Angel of God, exclaimed, “We shall surely die, for we have seen God.We are not therefore to conclude from this exclamation of the prophet, that the Lord Adonai, whom

he saw seated on a throne was Jehovah of hosts, any more than we are to conclude from that of Manoah, that the Angel which appeared to him was God, or that Isaiah really saw Jehovah, who is the invisible, whom no man hath seen or can see, but he saw Jehovah manifesting his glory and perfections in the Messiah. "He that hath seen me, says Jesus, hath seen the Father."

The prophet adds, "Then flew one of the Seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar, and laid it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this hath touched thy lips ; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged.” Also I heard the voice of the Lord Adonai (whom he had seen sitting upon a throne, and which the Evangelist informs us was Jesus Christ,) saying whom shall I send " Thus was the prophet in this vision, favored like Paul to see Jesus, that just one in his glory, and to hear the voice of his mouth.

The question, "Whom shall I send, azu who will go for us?" is addressed I conceive to Jehovah. To whom but to him could it be addressed ? Who but God had a right to appoint who should be employed in the administration of the Messiah's kingdom ? To whom could Jesus look,but to him, by whose will he was always directed, and whose commands he always fulfilled ? Did be send forth anıbassadors, they were the "Apostles of Jesus Christ, according to the will of God ?” With the strictest propriety, therefore, is he represented as saying, “Whom shall I send, and who shall go for us? The

sense of the vision being the future glory of Christ, the prophet may be considered in the following words, as the representative of his ambassadors, “Then said I, here am I, send me.

And he said, Go, and tell this people, hear ye indeed, but understand not,” &c.

To this part of the prophecy the Evangelist refers, when he says, "These things said Esaias, when he saw his (Christ's) glory and spake of him."' «These things," that is, those mentioned in the preceding verse.

«He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their hearts ;

that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them."

In these words, the prophet foretells that the gospel of Jesus would be despised and rejected by the Jewish people, that they would neither have ears to hear nor eyes to see, nor hearts to understand it.

In order to illustrate this part of the prophecy, the principal inquiry is, to whom the Evangelist refers, when he says, He hath blinded their eyes, &c. That he cannot refer to the Divine Being, I think it is manifest, because the words are cited as his, he it is that says, “Lest I Jehovah should heal them.” It is not reasonable therefore to suppose, that speaking to himself in the first person, he would in the same passage speak of himself in the third person.

Besides, if we understand by the pronoun he, Jehovah, he will be represented as blinding their eyes, and hardening their hearts, in order to prevent himself from healing them, as being the cause of their iniquity as a pretext for inflicting punishments upon them, which surely cannot be admitted, it being utterly inconsistent with the divine character, and perfections.

In order then to ascertain who is intended by the pronoun he in the text, let us examine the prophecy itself, and the various citations of it in the New Testament.

The prophecy, ver. 9, 10, the Lord Adonai is represented as saying to the prophet, “Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; ye indeed, but perceive not; make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes : lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert and be healed.” Here the unbelief of the Jews, which is represented by these several expressions, appears to be ascribed to the prophet; he it is who is commanded to make their heart fat, &c. How then did he fulfil this commission ? Surely not in a proper sense, by any direct or physical influence or


« ПредишнаНапред »