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Written by Wilson Thompson   

A SCRIPTURAL VIEW, OF THE MEDIATORIAL NATURE AND OFFICES OF CHRIST.

Having published a sketch of my views on the human nature of Christ, in a small work entitled SIMPLE TRUTH, and finding that some people, have vented their spleen against it, and have not been sparing in the most unqualified invectives, even declaring it to have no foundation in truth, or scripture; that it was brooded in my brain, without one text of scripture to support it; knowing my weakness, and liability to err, I determined to give this subject a dispassionate examination, and if there be no positive and pointed scripture to prove this point beyond a doubt, I would recant publicly; for I will contend for no controverted point in theology, without positive scripture language to support it. Having laid aside all books but the scriptures, I endeavored to divest my mind, of all prepossession, feeling more afraid of error than of Hell, I have examined this point by the word of God, with as much impartiality as I am capable of, feeling only solicitous to know the truth, and the following is the result of my examination. I hope my readers may be enabled to divest themselves of all predilections, let the scripture have full weight, and be willing to receive Bible truth, if it should thwart all our former views on this subject, for the truth shall make us free. If I should offer that which is not provable from positive scripture, receive it not; but pray for me, that God may teach me to know the truth; for if I am wrong in this, it is a great wrong. I said in my other book, when speaking of the human nature or manhood of Christ; "We cannot read the scripture without being convinced, that he did exist in a nature inferior to the Father, both before the world and since. " Some have found fault with the expression inferior; I was here speaking of his human nature, and I did think that there was no point, in the whole system of theology less disputed, then, that Christ possessed two whole and distinct natures, the one divine, the other human, and I have never read after any man; that believed in this, but what also held, the human nature to be inferior to the divine. This is all that I have said, and how people with no evil bias, could find fault with this expression, I cannot tell? Does not Christ himself say, "The Father is greater than I" and have not the orthodox uniformly understood this to refer to him as man? If so, what more have I said, of this matter, than the Baptist have always said? And our confession substantially says the same. I can see no substantial difference; between my saying, he existed in a nature inferior to the Father; and Christ saying, "my Father is greater than I? " And as I explained this inferiority to mean his human nature, or manhood, all the Trinitarians [as far as I know] believe the same. Therefore I cannot account for the cause, which has induced so many to fault this expression.

In Simple Truth, I attempted to show that the soul, was the man, and that the body was only a corporal substance in which the soul acted, but existed independent of the body; therefore, could exist without the body. With this definition and according to these premises, I have used the term soul or spirit, for the man Christ when speaking of his pre-existence; my reason for using this term was to prevent any from mistaking my meaning, and so suppose me to hold, to the pre-existence of the flesh and blood of Christ. When I speak strictly of the human nature, I do not mean flesh and blood, but a nature that distinguishes man from all other beings; this nature I call the soul, or human spirit. I think no one [after examining this matter] will deny the soul being the human nature or nature that distinguishes man from the beast, or in other words, the soul is the essence of man. Every part of animate creation on earth, devoid of a soul, we believe to be a brute, but let the body be of whatever shape, size, or complexion it may, if it is inhabited by a reasonable soul, we believe it to be a human being. The humanity of the body therefore consists in the soul, and the body is only human, by virtue of its connection with a human soul. The essence of man is, therefore, properly his soul.

Let the soul and body be separated from each other, the body will soon decompose, like all other elemental bodies when dead; but the man lives in his essence, that is, the soul is not vapid, or dead, but capable of enjoyment or misery, without the body. If the body be called the man, after death, it is with reference to what he was in life, when acting in conjunction with the soul; for I think no well informed man will contend, that the fleshy body devoid of a soul is strictly speaking, man. Every being, therefore, which is properly entitled to the name man, must be of the essence of man; this essence or nature of man, I have, in my other Book, called the soul or spirit, when speaking of the manhood, or human nature of Christ. This is scripture language, for we read of the soul of Christ both in the old and new Testaments, yet I am not so great a stickler for terms, as to contend for the phrase, soul, or spirit, as being more proper, than any other scripture phrase. I willingly allow each one of my brethren, any scripture phraseology to communicate his ideas, on this subject, and I only claim the same liberty; and I think I am entitled to this privilege. I have been a little at a loss, to know what word to use in this work, in speaking of the pre-existent Mediator; but as I believe that all will agree, that every living being possessed of a reasonable soul, is a man, I have concluded to use the phrase man, or human nature; but by these phrases, when I use them in speaking of the Mediator before his birth of Mary, I do not mean to include his flesh and bones, as they were after his birth, but the nature of man, in its primeval purity, without any necessary connection, with any elemental body, but in any shape or form, or in any body of a material, or immaterial kind, that which in scripture is called man, I must believe to possess the essence of man whether the body be mortal or immortal, or of what sort so ever it be; in this sense I shall now use the phrase man, and other synonymous phrases, to express the same idea. In this sense I shall attempt to prove from positive scripture, that the Mediator as man, existed long before Mary conceived her son, or before his birth of Mary. Now as I have given my views of what the essence of man is, and in what sense I shall use the phrase man, in treating on this subject, as the most familiar appellation, I hope none will be so unjust to me, or themselves, as to say that I hold that the fleshy body of Christ, as it was after its birth of Mary, pre-existed, for I have said this is not my meaning, but I think his pre-existent form, or body, was rather the same that it is since his resurrection, that is, immortal and glorious.

With this much premised, and according to the above definition, I shall proceed to settle the doctrine by the word of God. I Tim. 2:5, "There is one God, and one mediator between God, and men, the man Christ Jesus. " From this text, I prove positively, that the man Christ Jesus is the mediator between God and men; then ever since there has been a mediator, between God and men, the man has existed, for the man is the mediator; and I will leave the reader to state the time when there was no mediator between God and men. John 1: 1, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. " Now this was not God with God, for saith Jehovah, "there is no God with me." Deut. 32:39. But the Word was with God, and the Word was God; that is, the Word was of two natures, divine and human. The human nature was with God, and the divine nature was God. Now the five first verses of John's gospel, and the first three verses of John's first epistle, speak of the same thing; the Word that was with God, was made flesh, according to vs. 14, and says John, speaking of that same Word which was with God, "That which was from the beginning; which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life." Now this Word which was from the beginning, was seen, looked upon, heard, and handled; but this same John says [in his gospel, 1: 18 & first epistle, 4:12;] "No man hath seen God at any time." Now they did see the Word which was from the beginning, which was with God, which was made flesh; they heard the Word and seen his shape, but as for God, they have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape; this Word was with God, and the Word was God, in the very same sense, that the Word after it was made flesh, was with God, and was God; that is, in his human nature he was with God, and in his divine nature he was God. As in the beginning, the Word was both natures; in the human nature he was with God, so he was when in this world; in his divine nature, he was God, as he was when in this world. All things were made by this Word; the divine nature was the creator, and the human nature the medium of operation, according as it is said; "all things were made by him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. " Here we see the pronoun him, refers to the Word, that was both with God, and that was God; or to both natures of the Word, as being one person, as the divine and human nature is one Christ. In the divine nature he is God, in the human nature he is with God. The works of creation are uniformly ascribed to God; but not without bringing Christ to view, as will appear by comparing the 1021x1 Psalm, beginning at the 24d1 verse, with Hebrews, chap. 1, from the 8d1 to 12d1 verse. The former place reads thus, "I said, O my God; take me not away in the midst of my days; thy years are throughout all generations. Of old hast thou laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the work of thy hands. They shall perish, but thou shalt endure; yea, all of them shall wax old like a garment; as a vesture shall thou change them, and they shall be changed. But thou art the same, and thy years shall have no end." This passage speaks of God the Creator, but in Hebrews as above cited, creation is ascribed to the Son, in almost the same words as follows: "But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever. A sceptre of righteousness [or straightness] is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands. They shall perish, but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment, and as a vesture shall thou fold them up, and they shall be changed; but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. " Now this text seems to be an apostolic quotation from the Psalm above recited, but the apostle is speaking of both natures of Christ, divine and human; as man, his God had anointed him with the oil of gladness, above his fellows; for as God he had no fellows, or if the Father, and Holy Ghost, as distinct, were his fellows, as some contend, yet the second person was not anointed above his fellows in the Trinity, for then there could be no equality between the persons in the divine Trinity, for one would be anointed above the other two, and besides this, if Christ as a divine person was before his anointing equal with the Spirit, with which he was anointed, his being anointed could be of no advantage to him, for he was equal before he was anointed with the Spirit, or oil with which he was anointed, and therefore he could receive no advantage from the anointing. The kings, and priests under the law, received qualifications superior to what they had before, from their being anointed; and by the anointing with a peculiar oil, they were qualified for their official duties, but Christ as a divine person, could receive no gifts or qualifications from the Spirit, for he was equal with it, and if so he had all the qualifications, that either the Father, or Spirit had, therefore could receive nothing from either of them, by the anointing; nor could Christ as a divine person, be anointed by his God, for he was God himself. But it must have been his human nature that was anointed, above his fellows as man, as priests, or as kings; and was anointed by his God, with the oil of gladness, or the divine Spirit, and here are his two natures: divine and human, as Lord the works of creation are ascribed to him, and as man, he was anointed above his fellows, and as both natures are proper to Christ, and the apostle is here showing that he is both God and man, he quotes David to prove that both natures existed in creation, as well as in Christ when he was here on earth.

Psalm 110:1, "The LORD said unto my Lord, sit at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool. " See how Christ himself applies this text in Mat.22:41 to 45, inclusive; "While the Pharisees were gathered, Jesus asked them, saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is he? They say unto him, The son of David. He saith unto them; How

then doth David in spirit call him Lord, saying, The LORD said unto my Lord, sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool? If David then called him Lord, how is he his son?" This the Pharisees could not answer, nor do I see how any man can answer it yet; and deny, either the pre-existence of his human nature, or the exclusive divinity of his divine nature; for both David and Christ do make a plain distinction, the LORD that spake is in capitals, but David's Lord is not, the LORD is the divine Jehovah, and David's Lord was the Man, David's son, and both natures being in Christ; he was both David's Lord and his son; his Lord in his divine nature, and his son in his flesh; for according to the flesh our Lord sprang from David. The divine power, or God to the exclusion of all Gods beside him, and the human nature in whom he was displaying his divine power and glory, are here brought to view, in one Christ, who is both God and man, and these two natures in concurrence in him, are brought to view, in all the works of God, and in the whole of the mediation of the man Christ Jesus. Peter in his Second Epistle, 3rd chapter, speaking of scoffers that should come in the last days, [and I think I may say, many of them are already in the world,] says vs. 5, "For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water, and in the water; vs. 7, the heavens and the earth which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire, against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men." See also; Psalm 33:6, Heb.11:3, "By the word of the Lord were the heavens made, and all the hosts of them by the breath of his mouth." "Through faith we understood the worlds were framed by the word of God." The word, in the above texts, evidently is the same Word, which John in the first chapter of his gospel and first epistle speaks of; and all seem to refer to the works of creation and providence; then let us read the history of creation, and see if the same truth does not appear; see Gen. 1:3, 6, 9, 14, 20, 24, 26, & 29. Here we find that God created the world by the medium of his word. Speech properly belongs to man, and when speech is ascribed to God, the human nature is implied, for we cannot conceive of naked divinity, without the organ of humanity, speaking to man; for in this sense, we have neither heard his voice, nor seen his shape. Here in creation God said, let there be light &c. Here was the Word of God, saying let there be light, the word went forth, and the divine creating power was in it, producing all things; the divinity was the creator, the Word with it, and in which it was exerted, was the man, for the Word was made flesh, and this was the very same Word, that was with God in the beginning, by which all things were created, and without him was not anything made that was made; so we find in Genesis that the word of the Lord went forth, and the divine power in this word, created all things. This is not conjecture, for here were both natures in the Word, for the word which God spoke, was the medium of operation, and God was the power operating in the word, as a medium in creation. So the truth is, if the Word was from everlasting, Christ was from everlasting, for he "was brought forth from everlasting, or ever the earth was," and this was the same word or wisdom, by which God created the worlds, and is called the Son of God. See Heb. 1:1, 2. "God who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the 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." Here we see, that the very Word of God, in the last times, hath spoken unto us. No man of investigation will deny, but that the human nature of Christ, was the Son, by which God spake to the apostles, and it was the same Son, that was appointed heir of all things, by whom also he created the worlds. The divine nature of Christ, distinct from the human nature, was not appointed heir of all things, for they were all his without appointment, for they were his by right of creation, not by the appointment of another, making him heir; neither did God create the worlds by the divinity of Christ, or by Christ as God; for in this sense Christ was the creator, and not the instrument by which God did create. As Christ said, "the words which I speak unto you, I speak not of myself, but the Father which hath sent me, he doeth the works." The works of creation, are always ascribed to God or to Christ as God, but they were created by the Son, who was heir by divine appointment, by whom God created the worlds, and by whom he spake to the apostles in these last times; so if the human nature was the Man or Son, by whom God spake to us in these last times, the human nature was the Son, by whom God created the worlds and who was appointed heir of all things. Then so sure as God did create the worlds by Jesus Christ, so sure Christ existed when the worlds were made; and as sure as Christ is heir of all things by appointment; so sure his human nature is intended, for his divine nature was not dependent on any appointment to make him heir, for, " the earth is the Lord's and the fulness thereof. " The terms Word, Wisdom, Voice, Breath, &c., in the Old Testament, are used in the same sense, that the terms Jesus, Christ, Son, Son of man, Son of God, &c. are used in the new Testament; and almost a constant interchange of these terms is kept up through the inspired volume; John says, "the Word was with God;" Solomon in speaking of the same, uses the appellation Wisdom, and says in Prov. 8:30, "Then I was by him, as one brought up with him." The Word was with God, and so was the wisdom, by and with him. They are evidently no more, than two names for the same thing; and Christ is intended; but not his divine nature, that is, not Christ as God, for God says; there is no God with him, but this word, or wisdom, was with God; therefore, this word or wisdom, [in the nature and sense that he was with God,] was not God, but the divine power of the Word, and of the wisdom, was God. So while the Word, and wisdom, is God in the divine nature, they are with God in the human nature, and both natures must be understood, or a contradiction is unavoidable. Speaking of this same Word or wisdom, Moses says, Gen. 3:8, " And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day. " vs. 9, " And the Lord God called unto Adam; and said unto him, where art thou?" This shows the distinction, the voice of the Lord God was heard walking in the garden, and the Lord God called unto Adam. Here God was in the voice, as he was in his word, in the above case. This word, wisdom, or voice, is called breath, Psalm 33: 6, "By the word of the Lord were the heavens made, and all the hosts of them by the breath of his mouth. " Surely we can see a distinction between the Lord, and the breath of the Lord's mouth, but the breath of his mouth, was that by which he made all the hosts of heaven. This breath is called wisdom, Psalm 136:5, "To him that by wisdom made the heavens;" &c. This wisdom is called the word of God, Heb. 11:3, "The worlds were made by the word of God." Now nothing is more evident, than that these several appellations, are used for the same thing, and that the vehicle through which God exercised his power in creation, was intended, and that vehicle was Jesus Christ, as we have showed above, not his divine nature, for as God, he was the creator, but his human nature was the medium in creation, for in his human nature he was God’s Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom he made the worlds.  

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