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men to God and to heaven;"* in which case, there would be Unitarian salvation in their names.
3. If Jesus dying for us only meant, that he died to confirm his doctrine for our benefit-his Apostles did the same. Why then should all the efficacy be ascribed to his death ? And how could David say, “None of them may redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him."? " To the piety and constancy, the sufferings and martyrdom, of Christ's immediate disciples, we are immensely indebted; as in those facts, combined with their peculiar aircumstances, we find the evidence of the divine origin of Christianity, and the most edifying lessons of every virtue. Neither were they insensible to the benefit which would hence accrue to the cause of religion; and the contem. plation of it was to their disinterested spirits a source of the purest delight. Yea, if even I be poured out as the libation upon my sacrifice and ministerial service [for the establishment] of your faith, I myself rejoice, and I congratulate you all. Phil. ii. 17. 'I now rejoice in my sufferings for you; and I go on to endure in my flesh what yet remain of these afflictions (for the cause] of Christ, for the good of] his body, which is the church. Col. i. 24. Thus strongly does the apostle recognise the fact, of the great advantages to be derived from his own sufferings to his fellow-christians. But how does he shrink back from putting those advantages in the same relation to the salvation of mankind, which belonged to the sufferings of his Lord! Was Paul crucified for you?' 1 Cor. i. 13," †
4. “ According to this reasoning, our benefit from the death of Christ is only one part of the general sum of blessing derived from him; and to which his exemplary life, his doc trines, his miracles, and above all, his resurrection, contributed as much, or more, than his death. We should, therefore, have expected to find the forgiveness of our sins, and deliv. erance from condemnation, ascribed equally to any or to all of these. But how different is the fact! Christ lived, and taught, and proved his Divine commission for us; and we have thus a most important benefit from him in those respects; but it is to his sufferings and ileath alone that the New 'T'estament attributes the putting away of sin, remission, propitiation, reconciliation, redemption, and peace with God. This very marked difference deserves most serious consideration from those who deny, or doubt, the doctrine of the atonement." I
5. The object of Christ's death is stated in one place to be “ to redeem us from the cause of the law," and in another "for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament,” agreeably to what is elsewhere said of Christ being a propitiation “to declare God's righteousness for the remission of sins that are past." How, on Mr. Barker's theory, Christ could redeem persons, who had died hundreds of years before, I am at a loss to conceive! He could not teach them to repent and serve God!
* Newcastle Dicussion, p. 228.
+ Dr. Pye Smith.
| Dr. Pye Smith.
6. By referring to the texts which mention the work of redemption, you will observe that it is generally spoken of as a thing already accomplished on the cross, “ Having obtained eternal redemption for us," " when he had by himself purged (that is, made purification of or for) our sins,"' &c, &c. Mr. Barker answers this, by referring to the text, which says, that Jesus “abolished death.” 2 Timn. i. 10. Here, he contends, is a thing described as already done, which is in fact not done, but only begun, This certainly seems making pretty free with scripture: but on turning to the original, the apparent necessity for it vanishes; as the Greek word does not mean actually to do away with, but rather to make of none effect, as it is translated in other places, The meaning of the expression is, that Christ, by the redemp!ion accomplished on the cross, took away, the sting of death, and disarmed it of its terrors; in consequence of which, although it is still “ appointed unto all men önce to die,” yet to the believer death is nothing but the door, through which he passes into eternal life,
7. It is evident, that to be redeemed from sin, we must be redeemed from the punishment of what we have already com. mitted, as well as from the practice of it for the future. It would be very poor redemption, only to be converted and sanctified by the gospel, while eternal death was still hanging over us for our past sins. The Unitarian, I know, would tell us, that those sins are forgiven; but God himself solemnly pronounced it to be one essential part of his character, that he “ will by no means clear” it; and has taught us in bis word, that “without shedding of blood is no remission." From which it appears, that it would be of little value to us to be “ redeemed from all iniquity" for the future, unless we were also “redeemed from the curse of the law” for the past.
8. It must likewise be remembered, that it is only the application of the atoning blood of Jesus to the sinner's soul by the Holy Spirit, that can deliver him from the power of sin, and bring him out of darkness into light. “For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth (typically) to the purifying of the flesh: how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?" Heb. ix. 13, 14. We can only love God, by being made to feel that he first loved us, and gave his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 1 John iv. 10–19.
9. And lastly; let me remind you in the words of the writer so often quoted before, “that our doctrine concerning the design and the effect of the sufferings of Jesus, has not produced those sufferings, They are the same, and the facts are unalterable, whatever opinion be set up concerning their reason and moral cause, under the divine government. Which idea then, is the most worthy of the wisdom and benevolence of God; the one which attributes to the sufferings of our Lord an effect beyond all description important and valuable, conferring infinite good upon innumerable myriads of beings, and spreading its beneficent influence through all eternity; or the other, which regards the same sufferings as nothing more than a proof of the sufferer's integrity, and an example of patient endurance, to be imitated by other sufferers, if ihey should be so disposed ? Neither could the sufferings of Christ, if their expiatory or atoning quality be put out of the consideration, be of any service as a declaration of the general mercy of God, and his readiness to pardon sinners upon repentance. Surely it would, in all reason, bear the contrary way. If that pure and spotless One, in whom the Father was ever well pleased, was pressed down with a load so dreadful, not of outward suf. ferings only, but of an inward and mysterious anguish, the intenseness of which we have no means nor power of computing; what must be expected to fall upon us, who are conscious of transgressions innumerable and unspeakable against the law and majesty of Heaven ?”
Having thus, under various heads, endeavoured to shew what scripture teaches concerning the work of Christ, let us direct your attention to two remarkable circumstances, one at the opening, and the other at the close of his ministry; neither of which will bear any rational explanation, except on the supposition, that Jesus was the sinner's substitute, and bearing in bis own person a world's transgressions.
In Matt. ii. 13-15 we read “Then cometh Jesus from Galilee unto Jordan to John, to be baptised of him. John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptised of thee, and comest thou to me? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness." “ Look at that scene! The extortioner, the unjust, the profane, the profligate, the generation of vipers, all collected together before the spirit-stirring, consciencearousing messenger of God, confessing their sins and submit. ting to his baptism, Amongst them is one mysterious Being before whom the prophet stands awe-struck. All divine as was his commission he dared not undertake to class such a one with sinners, or to venture to bless one so infinitely above him. In suitable humility he exclaims, 'I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?' Hear then, his answer. “It becometh us to fulfil all righteousness.” Look at his countenance, sinless, spotless, holy, the love and the purity of heaven breathing in its every feature, and yet there he is amongst the unholy and the profane, there he is meekly submitting to the appointed ordinance of God. • It becometh us.' Why was it suitable ? Can those tell who deny his substituted righteousness, and his haring taken upon him our sins? It became him because the Lord had laid upon him the iniquity of us all. Is. liii.6. “He was made sin for us.' 2 Cor. v. 21.” *
Let us now go to Mount Calvary, and listen to the voice of Jesus as he hangs upon the cross. What is he saying? “ My
God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" What! a sinless martyr forsaken by God in his dying hour! A man who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth; who spent his whole life in self-denying acts for the service of God, and the good of his fellow creatures; to be forsaken by God at last! Is that the way God treats his faithful servants? other martyr, even though not sinless, ever thus deserted in the hour of trial? No! It is then that God's presence has always cheered and comforted them the most; and enabled them to rejoice even in the midst of their dying agonies. Never did any martyr but one exclaim at such a time, “ My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" And yet out of them all he alone was “holy, harmless, undefiled," absolutely "without sin.” Why was this? There can be but one answer-He was made sin for us; he hung upon the cross as our substitute; he took upon himself the whole load of human guilt, and bound it so closely to him, that for the time it became by imputation his own, and he thus presented himself before God to answer for, and to expiate, it all. The punishment due to that sin was separation from the presence and favour of God; and therefore did the Father judicially withdraw from his expiring Son all sensible tokens of his gracious presence, just as he would have done, had that Son really committed the sins for which he was then atoniug.* “Oh the glorious nature of that exchange," exclaimed a martyred reformer, “the sinless one is condemned, and the guilty goes the blessing bears the curse, and the cursed is blessed; the life dies, and the dead live; the glory is overwhelmed in darkness, and he who knew nothing but confusion of face is clothed with glory."
* The miraculous darkness, which overspread the whole earth at that time, was no doubt a sign of the spiritual desertion Jesus was then suffering. There is a remarkable saying recorded of an Eastern astronomer; who, knowing nothing of what was happening at Jerusalem, and not being able to account for the darkness by an eclipse (which could not possibly occur at that time) or any other natural cause, declared, that either God must be suffering, or some one, with whom God sympathised.
"Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.” Acts xvi. 30, 31.
SOME of you might be surprised, that no notice was taken in our last Lecture of those numerous passages of Scripture, which pardon and salvation are connected with good works; especially as Unitarians lay so much stress upon them. But these more properly come under the head of Justification; inasmuch as they concern, not the fact of the Atonement, but the way in which each individual is to obtain an interest in it. A person, who holds the doctrine of Justification by Works, may believe in the Atonement, just as much as one who holds the doctrine of Justification by Faith. The Church of Rome for instance, pronounces every one accursed, who does not hold both the Atonement and Justification by Works. Suppose we admitted, that pardon was offered to us solely on condition of repentance and reformation, there would still remain the question, Was not an Atonement necessary to render such an offer consistent with God's majesty and holiness? The question, however, in that case, would be a very unimportant one; all our business would then be to fulfil the conditions required. But if Scripture teaches us, that we can only be saved by having an interest in Christ's Atonement, that we can only obtain an interest in it by faith, and that a belief in the doctrine of the Atonement is an essential part of that saving faith, then the question becomes one of the most vital importance. And this is what we have now to consider. We want a full scriptural answer to the inquiry, “What must I do to be saved ?"
It is evident, that the Apostle's reply, “ Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and ihou shalt be saved,” only throws us back upon Scripture, to learn what “believing on bim’ means; or in other words, to learn what we are to believe about him. Perhaps the sbortest, and at the same time most comprehen. sive, statement of this, is that in 1 John, v. 1. “ Whosoever believeth, that Jesus is the Christ, is born of God." Unita