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enumerate. See the quotation from Pierce, on Col. 1: 26. above.
The phrase, eis tous aionas, is used in the following places, and is rendered forever and for everinore. Matth. 6:13. " for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever.” Luke 1:33. “ And he shall reign over the house of Jacob forever.” Rom. 1:25. and served the creature more than the creator, who is blessed forever.” Rom. 9: 5.66 who is over all God blessed forever.” And 11: 36. “to whom be glory forever.” And 16: 27. "to God only wise, be glory through Jesus Christ forever.” 2 Cor. 11:31. 6 the God and father of our Lord Jesus Christ who is blessed for evermore.” Heb. 13: 8. “ Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever." 1 Tim. 6:16.
In the following texts, the phrase eis tous aionas occurs, and is joined with ton aionon, and rendered “forever and ever," in ascriptions of praise to God and to Christ. Thus for example, Gal. 1: 5. "to whom be glory forever and ever." The same for substance is repeated in the following texts, which it is unnecessary to quote. Philip. 4: 20. 2 Tim. 4:18. Heb. 13:21. 1 Peter 4:11. and 5:11. Rev. 1:6, 18. 4: 9, 10. 5:13, 14. 7:12. 10:6. 11: 15. 14:11.15: 7. 19: 3. 20:10. and 22: 5. It occurs also in 1 Tim. 1:17. in an ascription of praise to God, which I shall
quote, as it requires some notice. 66 Now unto the i king eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God,
be honor and glory forever and ever.” When God is here said to be the king eternal, most people think the apostle meant to describe the endless duration of the divine being. But on this text let us hear Macknight, who thus writes. 6 Now to the king eternal. Perhaps, TW de Baldinei TWv diww, may be better translated, to the king of the ages, namely, the age before the law, the age under the law, and the age under the
Messiah. According to this translation, which is perfectly literal, the apostle's meaning is, To him who hath governed the three dispensations under which mankind have lived, so as to make them cooperate to the same great end, the pardoning of sinners, and who is immortal, &c. be honor, and glory forever, ascribed by angels and men.” There is no cause for alarm with good people, that these views are attempting to do away the eternal duration of God, for surely his endless existence is independent of the meaning of a Greek word, whether you give it a limited or an unlimited signification. Besides, in this very passage he is called the “ immortal (aftharto) God.” In some copies it is the athanato, or undying God. No one can doubt that Macknight's rendering is a literal, correct one.. The apostle is then rendering praise to God, who is king throughout all the ages, that before the law, under the law, and the age also of the Messiah. This king purposed an eternal purpose, Eph. 3: 11. which Macknight thus renders, “according to the disposition of the ages, which he made for Christ Jesus our Lord.” See his whole note on Eph. 3:11. part of which I shall only quote.
6 Abw, age, is a word of various signification. Here, in the plural, it denotes the dispensations of religion under which mankind have been placed ; namely the Patriarchal, in which a Saviour was promised; the Mosaical, in which he was, typified; and the Christian, in which he was manifested in the flesh, and preached to the world, as
All these ages or dispensations, the apostle saith, God planned and brought to pass for the sake of Christ Jesus; that is, to prepare mankind for his reception.-Rom. 16 : 25. Tit. 1: 2. (see the note on that verse,) xcover alw1101, signifies the ages of the law, or Mosaic dispensation. And Eph. 3: 9. Col.
1:26. Awes, signifies the Jews, living under that dispensation.”
There are a few more texts, in which the words everlasting and eternal occur, to which we shall now pay some attention, in connexion with these quotations. When God is called the king of the ages, the question occurs—What ages ? According to Ewing and others, the answer is, the age before the law, the Mosaic age, and the age of the Messiah. The king of the ages then, disposed, or appointed the ages, for Christ Jesus. Before the Mosaic age, a promise of life was given in Christ Jesus, Tit. 1:2. This we shall see more fully afterwards. It was promised to our first parents; also to Abraham, that in his seed all the families of the earth should be blessed. This was done during the patriarchal age. During the Mosaic age, the law was added to the promise until the seed should come. Many things connected with this dispensation, we have seen, were called everlasting; but which, having answered the purpose for which they were added to the promise, have vanished away. The age of the Messiah succeeded it, bụt it is to be succeeded by no other. When the end of it comes, Christ is to deliver up the kingdom to God the father, which appears to be at the resurrection of the dead, 1 Cor. 15: 24—29. Several things during the reign or kingdom of Messiah in this age, is called everlasting or forever. His kingdom is called the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ,” 2 Peter 1:11. And surely it may be called so, with more propriety than many things under the Mosaic age or dispensation, for this kingdom is not to be superseded by another taking its place, for when it closes it is said then cometh the end."
The gospel of the kingdom of the Messiah, is called " the everlasting gospel preached to the nations,” Rev. 14:6. And why is it called everlasting ? Be
cause it shall be preached as long as the kingdom of the Messiah shall continue, which shall be to the period called the end. Hence it is said, the word of the Lord endureth forever, 1 Peter 23. And Christ promised that the spirit or comforter should abide with his disciples forever, and is called the eternal spirit, Heb. 9: 14. Some copies, however, only read holy spirit. Such as believe the everlasting gospel, and enter into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ, receive "everlasting consolation and good hope through grace, 2 Thess. 2: 16. Or, as Macknight says that is, the means of never failing consolation.” To be so highly honored is thus expressed by Peter, 1st. Epistle 5:10. “ The God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus.” Let it be observed, that eternal glory is not said to be a future thing, but that to which Peter says they were already called. They receive the promise of eternal inheritance, Heb. 9:15. If the land of Canaan was given to Israel, and called an everlasting inheritance, as it often is in the Old Tes. tament, how much more might the inheritance in the kingdom of Jesus Christ bestowed on Christians, be called an eternal inheritance? It should be recollected, that the apostle was writing to Hebrews, to . whom such language was familiar. Besides, this, we shall afterwards see, is the same that our Lord calls enjoying eternal life in the world to come. And is it not the same that Paul calls inheriting the kingdom of God and of Christ, 1 Cor. 6: 9, 10. Gal. 5: 21 ?
The new covenant or dispensation, like the covenants under the Mosaic age, is called the everlasting covenant. And surely it may be called so, for it is not to vanish away, and give place to a new and better covenant, like that of the old. Christ's blood was that by which this new covenant was confirmed, and is called the blood of the everlasting covenant, Heb.
13: 20. Having purged his people, not as under the law with the blood of goats and calves, " but by his own blood, he entered in once unto the holy place, having, obtained eternal redemption," Heb. 9: 12. 66 And being made perfect through suffering, became the author of eternal salvation to all them that obey him," Heb. 5: 9. Christ's salvation is called a great salvation, Heb. 2: 3. probably in reference to other salvations which God wrought for ancient Israel. And here it is called eternal in the same comparative sense, for God wrought many salvations for them. This salvation was abiding. Comp. Luke 1: 74, 75. Is it asked-Salvation from what? I answer, not from hell and endless misery, for this is no where said in Scripture, but from sin and death, which Christ shall finally accomplish. See 1 Cor. 15.
In 2 Peter 3:18. we have also the following ascription of praise. “To whom be glory both now and forever. The Greek here is seis hemeran aionos." Macknight says this is '“ unto the day of eternity.” But how can this be, for what has eternity to do with days ? · Besides, how does this agree to some quotations made from him respecting aionos, which he says means an age. We should say the text simply says—“to him the glory both now and unto the day of the age.” Some copies have it, “ unto the age of ages," similar to passages noticed above. We should think the duration expressed is “during the age of the Messiah."
Luke 16:9. - That when ye fail they may receive you into everlasting habitations.” Dr. Camp
"the epithet unrighteous, here applied to mammon or riches, does not imply acquired by injustice or any undue means; but, in this application, it denotes false riches, that is, deceitful, not to be relied on.” Well, does not the epithet' everlasting, applied to habitations, mean stable and satisfactory ? See