Editor's Note 88
In closing, I desire too the reader to ponder seriously the way this affects the person and divine nature of our Lord. Was God manifest in the flesh, “as man,” born subject to wrath; under the guilt of Adam, and hence, liable to damnation; associated with man in the flesh, at a distance where God could not meet Him? The writer says, He was. He adds, that as a Son, He was always in the bosom of the Father. But if He were in the bosom of the Father, as Son, and born under wrath, as man—not vicariously—where is the unity of His person? Some one will say, What do you say then to the cross? I reply, His whole person and work were always, and then, as to His work, above all, infinitely acceptable to God. He had to suffer in His soul the wrath and bitterness; the doing of which was an additional title to the love of God His Father. “Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life.” His soul had to drink the whole cup of wrath: He was infinitely acceptable, and so was His work. Its vicariousness makes all the difference. But how could God’s manifestation in the flesh associate Him in the mystery of His birth as man, with man’s distance from God? I have treated, mainly, the positive statements of the tract, compared with scripture, but it is well to compare its statements with the scripture doctrine of the divine person of Christ—God incarnate.
Another tract—“Observations,” on that published by Mr. Harris—has been put forth by Mr. N. It clearly confirms the doctrine taught already, while expatiating on other points. Christ is said to have had all the feelings which God’s unconverted elect ought to have had! Now, incredible nonsense as this is, it is clear that the only meaning it can have is that Christ ought to have felt Himself deserving of damnation. Further, though concealing it to the inattentive reader by quoting only half the sentence, he has confirmed the very worst passage in the notes, and the whole poison of the doctrine, in the fullest way. He says, the passage, “Lamb made perfect through suffering,” ought to be “one made perfect through suffering.” But he does not quote the rest of the phrase, which is this, “in order to be a sacrifice.” So that Christ was the One made ‘perfect’ through suffering, in order to be a sacrifice. I do not insist on the entire perversion of scripture, where ‘perfect’ refers to His present state. But it is clear that the doctrine is, that He was not perfect for sacrifice till after going through the process. How could He be, if exposed to wrath? if born in such a condition that He had to extricate Himself out of it, and work His way up to life, to a point where God could meet Him?
And note, the writer declares that by these corrections given in the “Observations,” we are to know what he does own, and what he does not, in the notes published by Mr. Harris.
88 [These remarks were added to the second edition of the author’s tract (“Observations,” &c.) and are inserted here, as the reprint was from the first.—Ed.]