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can be collected from setting a hand in the sea, and a right hand in the rivers? Yet, if we acknowledge the divine inspiration of the Sacred Scriptures, we are compelled to allow that these are the words of God himself, and that, of course, they were intended to convey an idea at once rational and edifying, worthy of, and in agreement with, the love and wisdom of the Divine SPEAKER. How then, again, are we delighted to find, in the heavenly doctrine of the New Jerusalem, this rational and edifying idea unfolded, and at the same time an evidence given, amounting even to demonstration, that the ALMIGHTY regards the human body as significative, so that even its hands are applied, in his speech, to express sentiments the most sublime and instructive! For let us attend now to what that doctrine teaches in regard to the passage under consideration-" These words were spoken of David, by whom is there meant the LORD; the power of the LORD, even to the ultimates of heaven and the Church, thus over the wbole heaven and every thing of the church, is signified by setting the hand in the sea and the right hand in the rivers, power being signified by hand and right hand, and the ultimates of heaven and the church by sea and by rivers: the ultimates of heaven are seas and rivers, as hath been occasionally said above; these were represented by the two seas and two rivers, which were the boundaries of the land of Canaan; the two seas were the sea of Egypt and the sea of Philisthines, where were Tyre and Sidon; and the two rivers were Euphrates and Jordan; but Jordan was the boundary between the interior land of Canaan and the exterior, in the latter of which were the tribes of Reuben and Gad, and half the tribe of Manasseh.” (Ap. Ex. n. 518.] Is it possible now for any one, after reading this bright exposition of the passage under consideration, any longer to deny, or even to doubt, the fact, that not only the whole human body, but all its parts, even to the hands, are significative, and are regarded under that high and instructive character by the Most High himself? Is it possible also any longer to deny, or even to doubt, the high authority of the heavenly doctrine of the New Jerusalem, wbich has thus a tendency to draw aside the veil of the letter of the HOLY WORD, and in so doing to admit its delighted votaries to a view of the ineffable treasures and glories which lie concealed within it?
It would be a particular satisfaction to myself to expatiate still
further on the important subject, to which I have lately entieaa voured to call the attention of your readers, but I am afraid of wearying out their patience, and am besides of opinion, that enough has been already said to confirm the humble and sincere in the interesting and edifying persuasion of the significative and representative character of the human body. I shall, therefore, now leave such readers to the blessed instruction whieh such a persuasion cannot fail to supply, and this in the full confidence, that in proportion as they accustom themselves to regard their bodies, not only as in full correspondence with the angelic heaven, but also as in the closest connection with it and its DIVINE PARENT, they will by degrees ascend into the upper regions of intelligence and wisdom, where they will experience, to their unutterable joy, the fulfilment of the divine promise to the faithful and obedient, where it is written, “ I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts, and will be their GOD, and they shall be my people.” (Jer. xxxi. 33.]
That all your readers may attain unto this state of distinguished blessing, is the devout prayer, Gentlemen, of:
Your's, &c. &c. Leamington,
; J. C. July 5, 1824.
ON THE DOCTRINE OF ATONEMENT,
Forming a Contrast to
MONLY RECEIVED DOCTRINE OF ATONEMENT,
The Doctrine of the Atonement as understood by the New Church (signified by the New Jerusalem in the Revelation) is grounded upon the following truths
1. The doctrine of the New Church maintains that God is One both in Essence and Person, and that the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is that God. Hence the same individual Being is the Creator, Redeemer, and Regenerator of his people-God over all blessed for ever.
2. It asserts, that there are no qualities and properties in the
Lord, but such as are consistent with his truly divine perfections and attributes. Human weakness and imperfection are the results of human depravity: divine power and perfection have no other origin than divine holiness. Indignation and wrath, hatred and malice, with every other sinful lust and passion, had no abode in the human breast till after the fall; and it is well known that man's restoration from the ruinous consequences of that fall, depends solely on his deliverance from those lusts and passions; and it may be equally well known, that the Lord, who is Jehovah Himself, assumed human nature, subdued all the powers of darkness, death, and hell, glorified that nature or made it divine, and in “ His love and pity redeemed mankind.” Every dispensation from God to man is an errand of love, a message of reconciliation, a visitation of peace.
3. The Lord God of the New Church has no equal, still loss a superior: “The Lord,” says the prophet," he is the God: the Lord, he is the God.” The Lord, it is true, before his Humanity was glorified or made divine, was inferior to the Father, or Essential Divinity: hence he says, “ My Father is greater than I.” But after that memorable event, he made no such concession: for he became one with the Father, and was the Father himself. Hence he declares, “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him: he that bath seen me, hath seen the Father; I and the Father are one: all power is given to me in heaven and on earth." He had no equal to share it with him,no superior to demand it of him. If it be admitted, that the Lord, who wrought the Atonement, had a superior or an equal, it will be doubtful whether that atonement, in process of time, or through the intervention of circumstances, may not be invalidated, or even cease to exist:—a succession of atoning acts or sufferings may be required by the one, to which the other may refuse to accede. Moreover, the being who is considered as the Lord's superior or equal, must be so in three respects, viz. in love, wisdom, and power.' But God the Father, it is believed, is inferior to God the Son, in the first of these respects, viz. in love. Hence the Son's triumph is the creature's salvation, or redemption from the dreadful consequences of the Father's wrath.
4. The doctrine of the New Church infers, that God the Father, and God the Son are, as to essence and person, nature and atNo. IV.-- VOL. I.
tribute, absolutely and invariably one and the same. God the Father is love, wisdom and power, infinite and unmanifested : God the Son, the same love, wisdom and power, infinite, but manifested, and accommodated to the receptive faculties of his creatures : “ God was manifest in the flesh :" " And we saw his glory."
5. The New Church being “ sure that the Lord is God," glories in the Prophet's declaration, “ I am God, I change not.” God the Father, and God the Son being essentially one Divine Being, no change is predicable of that Being. To love and to hate (which implies change of state) is predicable only of man; and for this reason, he is under the influence of two opposite principles, the good and the evil, and is variously affected by both: his states of life, therefore, are necessarily subject to change, and this in proportion as ipflux from heaven or hell may predominate. But God is love itself, and wisdom itself, essentially so: and, therefore, he is the same yesterday, to-day, and for ever.” He is the glorions “ Sun of Righteousness,” whose proper representative is the sun of the natural world. The heat and light of this sun are in themselves, unchangeable principles, though they may be subject to the influence of various modifying causes, which may change their manifesting forms.
6. It maintains, that the Father (divine love itself) cannot do otherwise than shew mercy to his poor fallen children, because he cannot but love and pity them, and all the satisfaction he requires at their hands is, that they would repent, turn to him, and live. Hence comes his affectionate remonstrance, ye, turn ye, for why, will
die.” The idea of God the Son making satisfaction, in man's stead, is shewn to be nugatory and absurd, because such a satisfaction could in no respect change or reform him, and because the Oneness of God the Father with the Son being proved, it is evident there can be but one divine will, intention, and operation, which is to bless all creatures from, and out of, himself., Love, pure, essential divine love, cannot but love all, even though it be unrequited by love; still it can require no other satisfaction, because that would be to require what in itself it
not, and never can be., 7. It shews, that perfect love, such as the Father was in himself, and such as the Son made manifest or represented, could not be offended at all: as well might it be said, that the natural
sun's heat could become cold. For the Essential Divine Love or Father, when embodied, was the Son or Divine Wisdom, and thus became in externals what he had ever before been in internals, and ever will be to all eternity. It is true, the Scriptures appear to impute anger and hatred to the Lord; the Psalmist says, “ Thou hatest all the workers of iniquity :” and again, “ God is angry with the wicked every day.” But such imputa. tion is only an appearance ; for the wicked having inverted the order of their life, and having put evil for good, and darkness for light, have separated themselves from God and his angels, and are in association with infernal spirits, who in reality most cruelly hate," and burn to destroy them. Hence the Lord, in merciful condescension to their states, addresses them in corresponding language,-would awaken their fears, when he can no longer influence their love,would appear to them an enemy and avenger, when they are no longer receptive of his kindness as a father, and a “ friend that sticketh closer than a brother." The genuine truth of the case is, that “ his tender mercies are over all his works :" that “ he sendeth rain upon the just and the unjust," and would bring them to his everlasting kingdom. He created all out of love; he redeemed in order to regenerate and save; and when his love cannot accomplish this its grand object and end, it is still in the most compassionate effort to control the dominion of evil, and to mitigate, as far as possible, the bitterness of eternal death.
8. It teaches, that the punishment of sin can only attach to the sinner, and, therefore, there can be no transfer of sin or its punishment to the Lord. 'He indeed carried our sorrows, and bore our griefs, when he assumed Human Nature, and thus made bimself accessible to the powers of darkness: but we well know he'overcame them by the Divinity within bim; as the prophet declares, “ His own arm brought him salvation.' And it is certain, he will save to the uttermost all who approach him in love and faith. Every man must expiate his own sin by renouncing it, and every man is enabled to do so, if he looks to the Lord, learns divine truths from the Word, suffers those truths to reform his life and conduct, and prepare him for the society of angels. “He that doeth these things shall live by them.”
9. It maintains, that the mercy and justice of God are synonymous expressions, and, in truth, incapable of violation. Man,