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must be improper and metaphorical, and denote things of another nature, only called by the names of priesthood and sacrifice, in allusion unto them and to those things, who and which were appointed and ordained of God for no other end or purpose, but that they might prefigure him in the discharge of his office. And then to salve the matter, the things so improperly assigned unto Christ, must be said to be more excellent than the things that are properly ascribed unto the Aaronical priests, when indeed they are not, nor to be compared unto them; and if they were, yet would not that prove but that Aaron, though not absolutely, yet, as unto the office of the priesthood, was more excellent than Christ, as being properly a priest, whereas the Lord Christ was so only metaphorically, which is a diminution as to that particular.
He closeth his discourse: Istud adhuc antequam hinc abeamus notare libet, Paulum Rom. xv. 17. licet de munere suo apostolico loquatur, cujus vis circa homines primo versabatur et quod, ut cum Grotio loquamur, erat pro Deo aut Christo apud homines, tamen quia ad sacrificia sacerdotiumque alludit dicere, se habere gloriationem, seu quod glorietur in Christo Jesu ra gos Osov, in iis quæ apud Deum.
Answ. This observation doth no way impeach the force of the testimony produced by Grotius. He intended no more by that expression, Ta Teos Toy soy, but to declare in the words of the apostle, that God was the object of what was so performed, which certainly, unless some great reason be produced to the contrary, must be acknowledged to be the sense of the words. But Grotius proves his intention, from the matter treated of, which is sacrifices; and if they are not offered unto God, and that for men, they are not at all what they are called. And in compliance with this sense, the apostle respects the discharge of his conscience towards God in the work of his ministry, wherein he had immediately to do with him. For although men were the object of his ministry, yet he received it from God, and to him he was to give an account thereof. Wherefore he only declares, how he had acquitted himself sincerely in that whole work, which was in an especial manner committed unto him of God, and whereof he was to give unto him a peculiar
§ 18. I had sundry reasons why I chose to insist on a particular examination of these discourses of Crellius. For it is confessed, that none among our adversaries have handled those things with more diligence and subtilty than he. It was necessary therefore to give a specimen, as of his strength, so of his way and method, whereby he seeks to defend his opinions. And every impartial reader may see in the discussion of what he allegeth or pleadeth, that the whole of his defence is made up of
tergiversations, equivocations, and plausible diversions from the cause under debate. Besides, I have had sundry opportunities hereby to declare many things belonging to the nature and discharge of the priesthood of Christ, which would not conveniently be reduced unto other heads. And I was willing also to cast these things into this place by themselves, to avoid all controversies as much as possible in the exposition itself, though I constantly detect the falsehood of this man's interpretations, as that of others who either follow him or comply with him. And hereby also perhaps some who are less exercised in the sophistry of these men, may learn somewhat how they are to be dealt withal.
§ 1. Prefigurations of the priesthood and sacrifice of Christ. § 2. The original, use and practice of sacrifices before the law. Rabbinical conceits on Psal. Ixi. 32. Instances of the sacrifices of the Patriarchs. Occasional, not stated. § 3. No office of priesthood from the beginning. Men bound to offer sacrifices every one for himself. § 4. Sacrifices in families; before the law, and afterwards among the heathen; and in the church. 5. By whom those sacrifices were offered. § 6. This farther inquired into. § 7. The rights of primogeniture. What Jacob took from Reuben, Gen. xlix. 3. 8. Jews apprehension of the rights of the first-born. § 9. The right of sacrificing continued to particular persons before the law; and to fathers of families. § 10. The first rise of the priesthood in greater communities, by lot or suffrage. § 11. How far annexed to the kingly office. § 12. Inquiry into the original of the priesthood among the Egyptians. § 13. The story of the Hyosos in Manetho applicable to the Hebrews only. § 14. Who were the priests of Egypt. 15. The wise men, magicians, sorcerers of Egypt and of the Chaldeans.
§ 1. SUNDRY things concerning the priesthood of Christ, and those the most material that relate thereunto, we have now passed through. But we know withal, that although the foundations hereof were laid in the eternal counsels of God, and although a revelation was made of them in the first promise, immediately upon the entrance of sin, yet the Son of God was not actually manifested in the flesh, for the execution of those counsels, and for the discharge of that office, until the fulness of time came, after the expectation of a multitude of ages. In the mean time, there were certain prefigurations of it instituted of God in the church, to keep up and direct the faith of mankind, unto what was to come, in sacrifices and a certain typical priesthood; with emanations from them into the practice of the nations of the world. Now what is worth our inquiry, with reference unto these prefigurations of the priesthood of Christ, may be referred to these four heads. 1. The state of things in general with respect unto priesthood and sacrifices in the church, before the giving of the law. 2. The peculiar priesthood of Melchisedec, which fell within that period of time. 3. The institution of the Aaronical priesthood at mount Sinai, with the
nature and duration of that office, the garments, sacrifices, laws and succession of the high priests in particular. 4. The rise, occasion and usage of a priesthood among the nations of the world. From all these we may learn, both what God thought meet previously to instruct the church in, concerning the future glories of the priesthood of Christ, and what presumptions there were in the light of nature, concerning the substance of that work which he was to accomplish.
§ 2. Our first inquiry will be, as unto what monuments remain of either sacrifices or of the order of priesthood, from after the first promise and the institution of expiatory oblations, unto the solemn giving of the law in the wilderness, where all things were reduced into a methodical instructive order.
The first institution of sacrifices, and revelation of an acceptable worship of God in and by then, I have declared before, and elsewhere discussed and proved at large. Hereupon, as it is evident from many particular instances recorded in the Scripture, that sacrifices were offered before the law, it is highly probable, that Adam himself, after he had received the promise, which gave life and efficacy unto that kind of sacred service, did offer sacrifices unto God. And this some do suppose, and that not unwarrantably, that he did with the beasts with whose skins he was clothed, and that by the immediate direction of God himself. Hereby the whole of those creatures were returned to God, and not their carcases left to putrify on the earth. And so the whole was an illustrious exemplification of the promise newly given; or a type and representation of Christ and his righteousness. For as he was to be our real sacrifice of atonement, to expiate our sins, so are we said to put him on, or to be clothed with his righteousness. So typically was our first father, after his receiving the promise, clothed with the skins of the beasts which were offered in sacrifice to make atonement. And therein was Christ a Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. And these beasts seem rather to have been sheep or goats, than the greater cattle of the herd; their skins being most meet for clothing. The Jews suppose that Adam sacrificed an ox or a bullock. So in the Targum on Psal. Ixix. 32.
ותשפר צלותי קדם יי מן תור פטים ובחיר דקריב אדם My prayer shall please God • קדמי רקדימו פרנוי לטלפוהו
more than the fat and choice bullocks, which Adam the first man offered, whose horns went before the dividing of the hoofs." To the same purpose Rashi comments on the place,
c. This& הוא שור שהקריב אדם הראשון שנברא בקומתו
is the ox which Adam the first man offered, which was created in his full stature, and they called him an ox or bullock in the day wherein he was brought; and he was like a bullock of three years old. And his horns went before his hoofs, for his
head came first out of the earth when he was made, and his horns were seen before his hoofs.' It may be there is no more intended in this fable, but an account of the order of those words, 17p, wherein the order of nature, the bringing forth of horns, being placed before dividing of the hoofs, seems to be inverted; though nothing indeed be intended, but the description of a bullock fit for sacrifice. But the authors of the fable may yet have had a further reach. The Psalmist in that place, prefers the moral and spiritual duties of obedience before sacrificing. This they will not allow to be spoken with reference to the sacrifices of the law, and therefore put it off unto that of Adam, which they make their conjectures about. After this example, Cain and Abel offered sacrifices; Gen. iv. And Noah, Gen. viii. 20. And Melchisedec, as we have shewed, Gen. xiv. 20. And Abraham, Gen. xv. 19, 20. xxii. 13. And Isaac, Gen. xxvi. 25. And Jacob, Gen. xxviii. 18. xxxv. 3. 7. And Job, ch. i. 5. xlii. 8. Express mention of more sacrifices before the giving of the law I do not remember. Not that I think these were all the sacrifices, which were offered according to the mind of God in that space of time. 1 doubt not but all the persons mentioned, and multitudes besides, did often, in those days, offer sacrifices to God, thereby testifying their faith in the promise, and expectation of the great expiatory sacrifice that was to come. Oblations were not yet indeed fixed to times and seasons, as the most of them, especially the most solemn, were afterwards under the law. And therefore, I suppose, that the offering of these was occasional, upon some appearance of God to them; on great mercies received; in times of great dangers, troubles or perils, to themselves and families; when they were in doubts and perplexities about their affairs, and would inquire of God for direction, they betook themselves unto this solemn service, as the instances on record do manifest. And the only solemn sacrifices we read of among the heathen, derived by imitation from the patriarchs, were for a long season such as were in the times of approaching wars, after victories, or upon the solemn covenanting of nations or rulers, who yet in process of time also made use of stated solemn sacrifices, and those that were confined to the interests of private families.
§ 3. It doth not appear, that there was as yet any peculiar office of priesthood erected or instituted. But the persons who enjoyed the revelation of the promise, and the institution of sacrifices, may be considered two ways. 1. Personally. 2. As members of some society natural or political. Families are natural societies. Greater voluntary combinations for the preservation of human conversation unto all the ends of it, we may call political societies. Consider men in the first way, and every one was his own priest, or offered his own sacrifices unto