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and bodies, which bears a nearer analogy to the awful truth in question! There is (I suppose) no fact better established than the existence of a mind within us, perfectly distinct in all its powers and properties from the body, which yet it animates and directs, although it is itself often impeded in its operations, and distressed in its feelings, by the very imperfections of that body, which seems in other respects to be its instrument. How does this connexion subsist? By what is it maintained? or in what manner is it brought about? How is it, that our limbs instantaneously obey the first impulse of our wills? Of this we have not the remotest shadow of a conception: and yet our ignorance does not lead us to question, whether we possess such a mind, or whether it has the influence, ascribed to it. Shall our ignorance render us sceptical on the
subject of the divine
trinity alone of all the truths, with which we are conversant?
God (it is true) is infinitely removed above our comprehension and faculties. But yet with the material substances, which are brought
more immediately within our view, we do not appear to be much more acquainted, than we are with the nature of his being, or the persons in his Godhead. Nevertheless it is sufficiently clear, that no difficulty in conceiving the nature of a thing ought to interfere with the result of those proofs, which establish the fact of its existence. The self-existence and eternity of God are as incomprehensible as his trinity is. But the necessity of the case will prove the two former points as clearly as the declarations of scripture do the latter.
We may reasonably therefore rest satisfied in the conclusion, with whatever difficulties it may to our finite and feeble understanding seem to be chargeable, that in the unity of that supreme being, whose power and wisdom and goodness are infinite, there are three persons of one substance, power, and eternity, the father, the son, and the holy ghost.
But this will become still further evident, when we have treated of the second and third of these persons separately; by which I hope in the evening to compleat our survey of this awful, but most deeply interesting subject.
2 Corinthians, iii. 17.
Now the Lord is that spirit; and where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
HAVING at the commencement of this course established the unity of the Godhead, we were this morning engaged in considering the evidences, which scripture affords, of a trinity in that unity. It was then however observed, that these evidences would be still more satisfactory, if we could prove separately from the same authority the essential deity both of the son, and also of the holy ghost; for then it would follow, as the only way of holding at once the unity of the Godhead, and the deity of the son, and of the holy ghost, that we must
believe in the doctrine of a trinity. And this is the precise process, through which we are conducted in studying the sacred volume itself, which every where lays it down, as a fixed principle, that the lord, our God, is one God, while yet it teaches in no equivocal terms, not only, that the son and the father are one, but also, that the lord is that spirit.
propose therefore now to finish our survey of evidences upon this great doctrine of revelation by producing some of those, which appear most decisive of the deity of the second and third persons in the holy, blessed, and glorious trinity. I would caution you however once for all against thinking, that on these or any single texts rests the whole strength of the cause. The doctrine pervades the bible. Only it is necessary to bring forward some express proofs, which may be in themselves decisive, and to which the mind may at pleasure revert, when assailed by doubt or temptation. Having done this, I shall conclude with some practical suggestions on the use of the doctrine to the soul of every believer: and may the eternal being, who has graciously
revealed himself to his creatures, bless what shall be said to the sanctification of all, who hear it, through the truth!
First then, I wish you to take notice, that Jesus Christ is called the son of God in a sense, superior to that, in which the title is applied to any created being. Unto which of 'the angels,' (says saint Paul in the fifth verse of his epistle to the Hebrews) 'unto which ' of the angels said he at any time—“Thou "art my son. This day have I begotten thee"-? " and again," I will be to him a father, and " he shall be to me a son"- Others indeed are called the sons of God, as in the sixth verse of the eighty-second psalm it is written
I have said "Ye are gods; and ye are "all the children of the most highest"-; and in the twelfth verse of saint John's gospel -Unto as many as received him, to them 6 gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them, that believe on his name.' But none are called the begotten sons, except him, who is therefore the first and the only begotten. 'When he bringeth in the first