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cess is impossible in the nature might be made the righteousness of things. One person may suf- of God in him.". But here the fer for another, but he can never word sin is used for a sin-offering ; be a sinner for another. It is as it is said in another place, sometimes replied, however, in “ Christ hath redeemed us from view of such a subject, that the curse of the law, being made “ with God all things are possi- a curse for us ;" where his beble.” This is true of all things ing made a curse is explained to that do not imply a contradiction mean his ignominious death. in their own nature. The idea “ Cursed is every one that hangof transferring sin is not more eth on a tree.”'t repugnant to reason than it is to
In the Levitical law, the priest scripture.
Christ is said to die, is commanded to “bring a young the “ just for the unjust.” But bullock, without blemish, unto if there had been a mutual trans- the Lord, for a sin-offering,”! fer of moral character, he could (Heb. for a sin.) Now, as this be no longer just, nor they un- bullock without blemish was a just; Christ is said also to be type of Christ, the great sacri« exalted to give repentance and fice, it was very natural for Paul, forgiveness of sins.” If there while treating of the antitype, to is a transfer of our sins to Cbrist, make use of a similar term, by we can be subjects neither of re- which we ought to understand, pentance nor forgiveness. We as in the former case, a sin-offercould lay claim to an exemption ing. With this explanation, it from punishment from the puria perfectly accords with what the ty of our characters.
same apostle says to the HeIt is important to expose the brews, “ Christ was once offered fallacy of this principle, as some to bear the sins of many."'S And have inferred from it the erro- to the Romans, “ Who was deneous doctrine of universal sal- livered for our offences.'' vation. And if the premises are If, then, the atonement is true, viz. (that the sins of man- something more than the mere kind are transferred to Clirist, sinless example of Christ, or his and his righteousness transferred perfect obedience to the divine to them) I see not why the con law, and something less than a sequence will not follow : for it mutual transfer of character beis said, he“ tasted death for eve- tween Christ and a sinful world, ry man.” If the sins of man- we shall not be likely to mistake kind are transferred to the Me- its nature. Christ, in opening diator, they are no longer their the way to pardon and justificaown. They are exempted from tion, was substituted in the room desert of punishment in the most of sinners. He voluntarily took. literal and unqualified sense, and their place. He assumed their justice has no farther claim upon condition, but not their character. them. But this is not the scrip- He partook of the cup of afflictural idea of the atonement by Christ. It is true, it is said,
• 2 Cor. v. 25. † Gal. i. 13. “ He hath made bim to be sin
| Lev. iv. 3. § Heb. ix. 28. for us, who knew no sin, that we Rom. iy. 25. Vol. III. No. 11.
tion, but not of iniquity. He shepherd, and against the man experienced the displays of that is MY FELLOW, saith the wrath due to sin, but at the same Lord of Hosts." time was “ holy, harmless, un- God in this way having testidefiled, separate from sin- fied his utter abhorrence against ners. This idea of the atone- sin, and Christ having voluntariment makes the scriptures plain. ly, in his own person, on our ac“ Surely he hath borne our count, experienced the wages of griefs, and carried our sorrows; it, which is death, the way is yet we did esteem him stricken, open, without any reflection upsmitten of God, and afflicted. on the divine justice, or any But he was wounded for our ground of suspicion of the ditransgressions, he was bruised vine character, as conpiving at for our iniquities; the chastise. sin, or looking upon it with less ment of our peace was upon detestation than his tremendous him, and with his stripes we threatenings had indicated, for are healed. He made his grave pardon and justification to be with the wicked, and with the proclaimed to all who would rich in his death, because he had thenceforward forsake sin and done no violence, neither was accept of the Saviour; who any deceit in his mouth. Yet it would believe in his divine mispleased the Lord to bruise him, sion and character, imbibe his he hath put him to grief; when heavenly temper, copy his exthou shalt make his soul an of- ample, and “ adorn his doctrine sering for sin, be shall see his in all things.” Hence, it is seed, he shall prolong his days, said, “ Christ is the end of the and the pleasure of the Lord law for righteousness to every shall prosper in bis hand.”+ one that believeth.”
God can Consider Christ as a vicarious “ be just, and the justifier of sacrifice, or substituted in the him which believeth in Jesus." room of sinners, and all the evils The Son of man is “ lifted up, that came upon him are a mani- that whosoever believeth in him festation of the wrath of God should not perish, but have eteragainst sin. And this wrath is nal life.” Look unto me, and manifested in a more striking be ye saved, all the ends of the manner, than it could be by earth."
OMICROS. scourging all mankind out of existence. The' divine wrath against sin appeared in the uni
QUESTIONS versal deluge, in the conflagra
CHURCH GOVERNMENT, PROtion upon the plains of Sodom,
POSED AND ANSWERED. and in the frequent plagues in the camp of the murmuring
QUESTION I. Israelites; but it never shone in
If a council called by a church a light so awful and convincing, for the purpose of ordaining a as in the death of Christ, when
man to be her pastor, find him the prophecy
fulfilled, to be, in their opinion, heretical, " Awake, o sword, against my him, do they, by such refusalı
and therefore refuse to ordain * Heb. vii. 26. † Isai. liii. 4, 5, 9, 10.
Zech. xiü. 7.
leave him under an ecclesiasti- council ought to be called, before cal censure?
whom his opponents may bring ANSWER.
their complaint, if they please ; Every ordaining council must and in such expectation he is enjudge for themselves, whether titled to a voice in the nominait be their duty to ordain such tion of this council. The mempastor elect, or to forbear. If bers, at least some of the memthey find him essentially errone- bers of this council, ought to be ous, they ough: to forbear. called from the vicinity in which But in this case they leave him he has been previously converin the same state, in which they sant, as a theological student or found him, except so far as their preaching candidate, because to result naturally excites
them his manners, abilities and picions in the minds of others. sentiments may be best kpown. if they are called merely to or- If in civil society a man accused dain, they cannot censure him. of any crime has a right to be For no man is to be tried and tried by good and lawful men of condemned as a heretic, unless the vicinage, because, as civilthere be a complaint exhibited, ians tell us, to them his past manexpressly stating the heresies ner of life is better known than which he avows; and unless he to strangers ; for the same reabe previously served with a copy son a candidate for the ministry, of said complaint, that he may when called to a trial, has a right have reasonable time to prepare to the like privilege : And his for his defence; and unless the vicinage may not be in the place, council to try him be explicitly where he is invited to settle, but called for the purpose ; and he in the place where he has forhave a voice in their nomination. merly lived and been educated.
If he is not laid under censure This may be at a distance from by the refusal of ordination, then the place of his proposed settlethe church may continue their ment. Hence ordaining and jucall, and may convene another diciary councils are usually callcouncil; and this second coun- ed, in part, from a distance. cil will have the same right, as
QUESTION II. the former had, to judge for May not a minor part of the themselves, whether it be their council, if they are satisfied with duty to ordain or forbear. If the candidate, proceed to ordain they ordain him, he is to be con- him, although the major part sidered and treated, in all re- refuse to act in the solemnity ? spects, as a minister in good
ANSWER. standing, until a judiciary coun- As the whole council is called cil, vested with authority to try by the church to transact this him on the complaint, shall con- business, and to approve and vict and condemn him. As the sanction the proposed relation first council, by refusing to or- between them and their pastor dain the candidate, have left him elect, the minor part cannot act under suspicion, but not under jo opposition to the major part, censure, in which equivocal state without a new call from the it is improper that he should church. When the council remain, therefore a second have declared their result, their existence, as a council, ceases. directed. But the purer memThe church may then request bers of these churches are not certain members of the late commanded to leave their mincouncil, or others, to ordain their isters, cr their brethren, and pastor. These, thus authorized, join the church in Philadelphia ; may form themselves into a new or to form themselves into sepacouncil, and proceed to ordain, rate churches in the places or not, as wisdom and duty shall where they were ; but on the direct.
contrary, to preserve tbeir own QUESTION III.
purity in their present connexIf a number of the brethren ion, and by their example and inof the church, thinking the pas- fluence to reform those, who tor heretical, are dissatisfied with were corrupt. Christ had but a bis ordination, ought they to few names in Sardis, which had withdraw from his ministry and not
defiled their garments. from the communion of the These were not to retire, but to church, and attend on ordinances continue in their place, and elsewhere?
strengthen the things, which reANSWER.
mained. They are not to withdraw im.
QUESTION IT. mediately, but to remain in their What steps ought the dissat. connexion a reasonable time, un- isfied brethren to take in the til measures can be taken to in- case now suppose? vestigate and rectify what they
ANSWER. suppose to be amiss.
When the church has deterto seek not merely their own
mined to convene a second counprofit, but the profit of many. cil for ordination, the opponents If the man ordained is unfit to may state to the church in the be their minister, he is no less form of a complaint all their obunfit to be a minister eleewhere. jections and allegations against If they think his ministry will the pastor ciect, and serve him be dangerous to them, they must with a copy of it, and may enthink it will be more dangerous deavour to sustain it in the preto their less discerning breth- sence of the council when conren; and therefore they are
vened. This is ordinarily the bound to take regular and order. most proper and regular course. ly measures for his correction or If, however, they think they deposition.
have not been allowed a just All the seven churches in Asia, share in choosing the council, except Philadelphia, were, in and consequently cannot place John's time, reprehensible for sufficient confidence in them, many corruptions both in man- they will probably decline to reners and doctrines. Several offer an ultimate decision of the them had embraced the doc- matters in question to the judg. trines of Balaam, of the Nicolai- ment of such council. But still tans, and of Jezebel. And these there is an after remedy. doctrines were countenanced, or If the pastor be ordained, the not opposed by the pastors. To opponents, as has been shewn, shem therefore Christ's reproofs are not hastily to withdraw, but are primarily and immediately to attend on his ministry, and
commune with their brethren ; judgment in the case now to be for to withdraw, is to renounce tried. and censure the minister and In our civil courts no man can church without a previous trial; be a juror in a criminal prosit is to adopt the disorganizing ecution, who is known to have principles of separatists, and declared his opinion against the other enemies of ecclesiastical person accused. In capital triorder. But if they are still dis. als, the person to be tried may satisfied with the doctrines challenge peremptorily almost preached, or with the omission two whole juries, and remove of doctrines, which ought to be as many more jurors as, in the preached by their minister, they judgment of the court, are obare bound in common prudence, jectionable characters; and after and by the plain direction of all there can be no conviction Christ, to confer with him in without unanimity in the jury. private. If they obtain no satis. Surely then in a Christian court faction, they are to request him no man should sit as a judge, and the church to join with them who has given an opinion in a in calling a council to try him council, or elsewhere, against on a complaint, which, or a copy the person to be tried. This of which, is now to be before would be a palpable contradichim and the church ; and this tion to the apostolic rule, that complaint must contain all mat- nothing be done by firejudice ters of grievance and dissatis- (previous judgment) or by far. faction that the controversy may tiality, (inclination to a person, be terminated.
or to either party.)* The proposal for a mutual When the mutual council is council should be made with a opened, the accuser will exhibit candid and pacific spirit, and with his complaint ; the accused will out any such restrictions and make his plea ; and the council limitations, as would tend to will judge. The accused, under clog and defeat it. The apos. the direction of truth and contle's direction in matters of dis- science, has his option of three cipline, particularly in the trial pleas. 1. He may plead that of an elder is, that nothing be he has never avowed the heresies done with prejudice or partiality. alleged. Then the accuser Each party ought to have a voice will produce his evidence, and in the nomination, and neither the council will judge of its should insist on a nomination, competence. Or, 2. He may which can be justly exceptiona- concede the facts or avow the ble to the other; for peace and doctrines stated, and endeavour truth should be the governing to justify them. It will then be object with both. The apostle's incumbent on the complainant to caution, to do nothing by preju- prove that they are criminal herdice or partiality, plainly shows, esies, and condemned as such in that no man ought to be made a scripture ; and the council will member of this council, who is judge, whether they are such or under any known bias, or who, not. Or, he may confess, that in a former council, or in any manner whatever, has given his • Prokrima--Prosopolepsia.