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in the beginning hast laid the foundations of the earth; and the heavens are the work of thy hands.'
It has been denied, that this last passage is applied by the apostle to Christ; but the denial cannot, I think, have proceeded even from prejudice. It must have resulted from absolute inattention. In the 7th verse the apostle says, ' And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire. But unto the Son he saith What? Two things, which follow : the first, quoted from the xlvth Psalm, beginning, “thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever;' the second, quoted from Psalm cii. and beginning with, • Thou Lord in the beginning bast laid the foundation of the earth :' and these two are coupled by the conjunction Kær, or • and.'* In this manner the passage has meaning and syntax; but without it, has neither. If the passage be not applied to Christ by the apostle, he departs entirely from his discourse begun before and continued after this passage ; that is, carried through the whole chapter; and inserts these three verses, containing, according to this scheme, not even a parenthetical reference to any thing in the chapter, nor indeed to any thing in the whole book. In the mean time, the 'and,' by which it is connected with the former quotation, and which determines it, beyond debate, to be a part of the speech of the Father to the Son, makes it, according to this scheme, to be ungrammatical nonsense. Surely such writing ought not to be attributed to the Apostle Paul, even if we regard only his character as a man of understanding. It ought, however, to be remarked, that for the present purpose the passage may be dispensed with, without any disadvantage: those which remain being abundantly sufficient to establish the point. In the two former of these passages it is asserted, that all things in heaven and in earth, visible and invisible :' nay, that every thing
' which has been made,' without the exception even of one, 'were created by Jesus Christ;' in the latter,' the heavens and the earth,' the Jewish appropriate phrase to denote the universe, are declared to be the work of his hands.'
On these passages I observe, that if a person, thoroughly acquainted with language, were to sit down purposely to express the proposition that Christ created all things,
• See an example of the same mode of connection, Matt, xxiii. 16–18.
he could not find words to express it more clearly, and decis sively, than those, which convey to us each of these scriptural declarations. St. John, particularly, has gone the utmost length which human language will permit; when, after saying,
And by him all things were made,' he subjoins, and without him was not even one thing made, which has been made.'
2. The preservation of all things is also ascribed to Christ in the most explicit manner.
Colossians i. 17. By him,' that is, Christ,' do all things consist.'
Hebrews i. 1, 2, God, who at sundry times, and in divers · manners, spake unto our fathers by the prophets hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son: whom he hath appointed heir of all things; by whom also he made the worlds: who, being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power,' &c.
On these passages it cannot be necessary to dwell. They plainly have but one meaning; and that meaning is too explicit to admit even of an ingenious misconstruction. The words make it evident, if words can make it evident, that Christ is the upholder of all things.
3. The government of all things is, in the same direct and distinct manner, applied to Christ.
Psalm xlv. 6. • Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever.'
The second Psalm throughout, is an illustrious exhibition of the universal dominion of Christ.
The seventy-second Psalm is a still more glorious exhibition of the same subject. Here it is said, that · his dominion shall extend from sea to sea, and from the river to the ends of the earth; that all kings shall bow down to him; that all nations shall serve him: that they shall fear him as long as the sun and the moon endure : that his name shall endure, and be blessed, for ever: and that the whole Earth shall be filled with his glory. Amen.'
Psalm cx. 1. The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.
Psalm viii. 5. Thou madest him a little (for a little time) lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour: Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands. See this passage applied to Christ, Heb. i. 9.
Isaiah ix. 6, 7. • Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder. And his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Father of the everlasting Age, the Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end.'
Daniel vi. 13, 14. “And I saw in the night visions, and behold, one like the Son of Man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the ANCIENT OF DAYS; and they brought him dear before him. And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom; that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him : bis dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away: and his kingdom that, which shall not be destroyed.
The same doctrine is pursued throughout the New Testament in the same explicit manner. Acts x. 36. · The Word, which he sent to the children of Israel, proclaiming glad tidings of peace by Jesus Christ. This person is Lord of all things.'
Rom. ix. 5. Of whom, as concerning the flesh, Christ came, who is over all things, God blessed for ever and ever. Amen.'
1 Cor. xv. 25. · For he must reign, until he hath put all enemies under his feet.'
Ephesians i. 20. · Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but in that which is to come: and bath put all things under his feet; and given him to be head over all things unto the church.'
Philippians ü. 9--11. - Wherefore God hath highly exalted bim, and given him a name, which is above every name; that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess, that he is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.'
These numerous passages are, comparatively, but a few of those in which the Scriptures assert the absolute and universal dominion of Christ. I have recited such a number of them, to show that this doctrine runs through the whole sacred volume.
No words can be conceived which can express absolute and supreme dominion over all beings, and all events, more unequivocally or more forcibly than these. The name of Christ is here declared to be above every name that is named, not only in this world, but in that which is to come, in earth and in Heaven,' in time and in eternity. All things in all worlds are required to bow to him. Angels of every order, as well as men, it is declared, shall thus • bow' to him, either voluntarily or involuntarily; and shall • confess, that he is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.' This dominion also is asserted to be without limits, and without end. I shall only add, from the mouth of Christ himself, “I am the first, and the last, and the living one. Also, ' I was dead, and behold, I am the living one for ever and ever: and I have the keys of hades and of death. I shut and no one openeth ; I open, and no one shutteth ;' Rev. i. 17, 18; and üï. 7: and the equivalent passage, Matthew xxviii. 18. “And Jesus came, and
· spake unto them, saying, All authority in heaven and in earth is given unto me.' Here Christ asserts that the rightful exercise of all power in heaven and in earth is in his possession; that he has the keys of bades and of death ;' or the absolute controul over the world of the dead and the region of departed spirits. From that world, from that region, none of the numberless inhabitants can escape without his permission ; but when the gates are unlocked by him, none can hinder them from coming forth ; as at his call they will actually do on the great and final day.
4. The act of giving and restoring life, is also expressly ascribed to Christ in a variety of ways.
Particularly while he' resided in this world, he raised the dead at his pleasure. The daughter of Jairus, the son of the Widow of Nain, and his beloved Lazarus, were illustrious examples. All these returned again from the world of departed spirits at his command. • Damsel, I say unto thee, Arise ;' • Young man, I say unto thee, Arise ;' Lazarus, Come forth !' were the only means which he employed; and the spirits of these deceased persons instantly obeyed the call. This amazing power he accordingly asserts of himself in terms absolute and universal. John v. 21, 26. As the Father raiseth up and quickeneth, even so the Son quickeneth whom he will. As the Father bath life in himself, so hath he given
no one was
to the Son to have life in himself. * In the same manner St. Paul declares, 1 Cor. xv. 45. The first Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was a quickening spirit. In a still more striking manner did he exemplify this wonderful power in raising himself from the dead. That he did this cannot be doubted, unless we are disposed to doubt the truth of his own express declaration. John x. 17, 18. • Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it up again : no one taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it up again.'
In this passage it is as evident, as words can make it, that Christ“ laid down his life,' of his own accord only, and of his own accord - took it up again ;' and that' able to take it from him. Accordingly, St. Peter declares, Acts ii. 24, that it was not possible for him to be holden of death.'
Another most wonderful exhibition of this astonishing power will be made by him, as he himself has told us, in raising up the dead at the last day. •And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one who seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.' John vi. 40. And again, verse 54. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.' See also verse 39 and 44.—John v. 28. • Marvel pot at this ; for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good to the resurrection of life, and they that have done evil to the resurrection of damnation.'
After Christ had ascended to heaven, the apostles, according to his promise, raised the dead by his power and authority; and thus proved the ubiquity of his power, as well as of his presence.
As there can be no rational doubt concerning these passages, and no misconstruction of them, except by violence, I I do not suppose any explanation of them to be necessary. They carry their own meaning perfectiy in themselves, and therefore demand no comment. The united language of them all is,
* See also Phil, iii. 21, and Col. iii, 4.