Page images




If there should be in the minds of any a doubt whether Jehovah, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, is the same Person whom Jesus calls his God and Father, it is believed they may obtain entire satisfaction on the subject by considering the following passages. The Apostle Peter says, “ The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our Fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus.”— Acts iii. 13. The Jews said, “We have one Father, even God : Jesus said unto them, if God were your Father, ye would love me, for I proceeded forth and came from God.... It is my FATHER that honoreth me, of whom ye say, that he is your God.”—John viii. 41, 42, 54. Here Jesus clearly proves that his Father was the God of the Jews. He does not intimate that the Triune God, (Father, Son, and Spirit) was the God of the Jews, but the Father only, He whom they worshipped as JEHOVAH, He who declared by his Prophet Isaiah," I am God, and there is NONE ELSE; I am God, and there is NONE LIKE ME." - Ch. xlvi. 9.

The doctrine that God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, is JEHOVAH, the God of the Jews, seems to me too plainly taught in the New Testament to admit of a doubt. There are more than a hundred passages in the New Testament, in which the FATHER “is styled God with some peculiar high titles, epithets, or attributes, which,

though most of them are not absolutely incommunicable, yet in the New Testament are (generally if not) always, by way of supreme eminency, ascribed to the Person of the FATHER only." There are also more than three hundred in which the appellation God is used in such connexions as necessarily confine it to the FATHER only. Of these, many are totally incompatible with the Trinitarian hy. pothesis ; as they not only show that God, the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, is another Being distinct from the Lord Jesus Christ, but also that the appellation God is, in its absolute sense, appropriate to the FATHER only. Let us examine a few of these passages, beginning with the testi mony

of Jesus Christ himself. · This is life eternal, that they might know thee, (the Father) the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent."-John, xvii. 3. If the Father is the ONLY TRUE God, neither Jesus Christ whom God hath sent, nor the Son, nor any other person, is the TRUE God.

" But of that day and that hour knoweth no one, (ouders) no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father only.”—Matt. xxiv. 36: Mark xiji. 32. If the Son, or any other person besides the FATHER, either in the Trinity or out of it, were God, he would know the day and hour. But as no one knows but the FATHER, it is certain that no one is God but the FATHER. Let us now examine the testimony of the Apostles.

One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all."--Eph. iv. 5, 6. If the FATHER is the ONE God of all, who is above the One LORD, and above ALL, it is certain that neither the One Lord, nor any other one, either in the Trinity or out of it, is the Father's equal—" The same in substance, equal in power and glory."

For though there be that are called Guds, whether in

be one.

heaven or on earth, (as there be Gods many and Lords many;) But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him.”—I Cor. viii. 5, 6. Here we are taught the five following important truths,

1. That there are, in heaven and on earth, many, besides JEHOVAH, that are called Gods. These are not idols, for no such are in heaven; but images of the invisible God. Christ may

See John x. 35. 2. That God is but one," but one Person, the FATHER.

3. That this one God, the Father, is the Source of all things-"OF whom are all things."

4. That Jesus Christ, the one Lord, is, in his highest nature (I speak as a Trinitarian) as distinct from the being of God, as he is from the Person of the Father. If Jesus were a mere man in any nature, it could not be said, in regard to that nature, that we and all things are by him. Will the Trinitarian

say that we and all things are by the human nature of Christ, which had no existence till the Augustan age? As many things existed before that period, we and all things are by the pre-existent Christ, who is the first born of every creature-the beginning of the creation of God.

5. That the one Lord, Jesus Christ, is the intermediate minister, or agent, by whom God displays his power in the production of events. “By whom are all things, and we

by him."

Again-The Scriptures teach that the Father is the only True God, by pointing him out as the only proper object of supreme worship. As the Father is the ONLY TRUE God, and as he has thus commanded, Thou shalt worship no other God,' it seems to be an unavoidable conclusion that He alone is the object of supreme worship. But we are not left to inference merely. He who is the Way, and the Truth, and the Life, who has set us an example that we


should follow his steps, always prayed to the Father'; and, while engaged in the solemn act of prayer, he declared that the knowledge of the Father, as the ONLY TRUE GOD, and of Jesus Christ whom he had sent, is 'eternal life. See John xvii. 3. He never prayed to his own divine nature, or to the Son, or to the Holy Ghost. He never prayed to the Triune God, or to a Trinity in any form. ' I recollect of but one instance in which he invoked the Supreme Being by the appellation God. This was when


the cross he repeated the words of David, "My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?Ps. xxii. 1. Just before his crucifix. ion, Jesus prayed thus: “O MY FATHER, if this cup may not pass away


me, except I drink it, thy will be done." At the grave of Lazarus he prayed thus: “FATHER, I thank thee that thou hast heard me: And I knew that thou hearest me always." So certain is it that Jesus always prayed to the FATHER.

The precepts of Jesus inculcate the same important doctrine. He said to the Tempter in the wilderness, “ It is written, Thou shalt worship the LORD [Jehovah] thy God, and HIM ONLY shalt thou serve." The word here rendered serve, always denotes religious service. It is used, I think, in the New Testament 21 times, but not once 'in reference to Jesus Christ. Is not this as decisive as it is remarkable ?

Jesus said to the woman of Samaria, "The hoúr cometh and now is, when the true worshipers shall worship the FATHER in spirit and in truth: for the FATHER seeketh such to worship him." If Jesus had said the true worshipers shall worship God in spirit and in truth, the Trinitarian might infer that he meant 'the Triune God-Father, Son, and Spirit. I cannot conceive how it is possible for Trinitarians, who professedly worship two other objects besides the Father, to claim the character of " the true worshipers :" since they have no written authority, but “ the tradition of the elders,” to urge against this plain decision of Jesus Christ.

In compliance with the request of his disciples to teach them to pray, Jesus said unto them, “When ye pray, say, OUR FATHER which art in heaven. Hallowed be thy name.”Luke xi. 2. So in Mat. vi. 9. “After this manner, therefore, pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven.” If Jesus had intended to teach his disciples to pray to the Triune God of human creeds, is it not morally certain, to say the least, that he would have directed them to use the general appellation God? Had he done so, the idea of a Trinity would not have been so certainly precluded. But by teaching them to pray to one person only, the FATHER, to whom he himself prayed, to whom their fathers prayed, and whom he declares to be the ONLY TRUE God, he has entirely precluded even the possibility of such an inference. And is it not more than probable that it was one design of our Saviour in being thus explicit in regard to the object of prayer, to leave no room for such an inference ?

Had our Saviour, in prophetic vision, surveyed the age in which we live, and had it been his intention to give instructions relative to the object of prayer in such a manner as to leave no pretext to infer the doctrine of a Trinity of persons in God, I cannot conceive how he could have employed better phraseology, or chosen more appropriate words.

If the Apostles had taught us any thing contrary to the instructions of the Great Teacher, we should be at no loss to determine by whose authority we ought to be governed. But they have not done so. They have taught, both by example and precept, that the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ is the only object of supreme worship. See the following passages. Rom. xv. 5, 6. Eph. ii. 18, iii. 14, and v. 20. Phil. iii. 3. · Col. i. 3, 12, and iii. 17. James iii. 9. I Pet. i. 17.

« PreviousContinue »