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them, but had also, with greater and truly divine power, entered into the recesses of his own mind, and caused him to speak to others from the full assurance of faith. Hence arises an argument as follows. He who principally spoke to David, in David, and by David, is the true and the Most High God. But the Holy Spirit so spoke. Therefore, the Holy Spirit is the true and the Most High God. Crellius himself has furnished us with the major proposition. The assumption is proved from David's confessing that himself and his tongue were the instruments of the Spirit; and he whose instruments the prophets are, is himself the chief cause of divine revelations.
XXI. Peter supplies us with a very powerful argument for the Divinity of the Holy Spirit in Acts v. 3, 4; where he uses an expression relating to the Holy Spirit, which served to show that the lie told by Ananias was a most abominable and heinous sin. Now, nothing tends more to aggravate that sin, than to observe, that it was not committed against mere men, such as the Apostles were, but against the Holy Ghost. Nothing, besides, is more adapted to prove that the lie told to the Holy Ghost is a most heinous sin, than this other observation, that he who lies to the Holy Ghost, lies to God himself. This reasoning of the Apostle, however, would not hold, if the Holy Spirit were not God. Adversaries urge two exceptions here. First, they allege " that it is said to Ananias, that “ he lied to God; it is not said that he lied to the
Holy Ghost, but that he pretended to the Holy “ Ghost."* The words in the Greek,t they add, may
* Ananiæ dici quod mentitus sit Deo, non dici quod mentitus sit Spiritui Sanclo : sed quod mentitus sit Spiritum Sanctum.
+ Ψεύσασθαι σε το πνεύμα το άγιον.
signify either to pretend to the Holy Spirit, as Erasmus and others render them, or to deceive the Holy Spirit, according to Piscator and others. And the change of the case in the original language, say they, is not accidental but intended, lest any should imagine that he who had just been styled the Holy Ghost, is called God. Their other objection is, that although our interpretation were admitted, it could no more follow from it, that the Holy Spirit is God, than it can be inferred that the Apostles are God, from the parallel reasoning of Paul in the first Epistle to the Thessalonians : “ He, therefore, that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God.” To these objections we reply, 1st, The Greeks construe the word Yeurcodul with a Dative or an Accusative indiscriminately.* 2dly, The exposition of Erasmus is quite foreign. Ananias, by keeping back part of the price, which is the matter referred to, could not pretend that he had the Holy Ghost. Peter himself, too, gives a different account of the matter, when he says, “ How is it that ye “ have agreed together, to tempt the Spirit of the “ Lord ?”d_To deceive the Holy Ghost, as Piscator chooses to interpret the expression, that is, to attempt to deceive, is either nothing else than to lie to him, or even something more. The scope of the Apostle's argument, then, is as follows: Whoever attempts to deceive the Holy Ghost by lies, as thou Ananias art doing, is guilty of a most atrocious and truly diabolical sin; for he lies not to men, but to God. 3dly, It doth not indeed follow from the words of Paul to the Thessalonians, cited above, that the Apostles are God: but it is shown, that the contempt of the discourses which A. postles preached by inspiration of the Spirit of God, recoils upon God himself. So here, the lie of Ananias, by which he endeavoured to impose on the Apostles, ultimately redounded against the Holy Spirit, who, by consequence, is God. If Peter had intended to say that Ananias lied to the Apostles, through the Apostles to the Holy Ghost, and through the Holy Ghost to God—distinguishing the Spirit as a kind of medium or middle person, between God and the Apostles, he would have said, Thou hast not lied unto men, nor unto the Holy Ghost, but unto God. 56
* Of many examples that might be given, let the four following sufice. Is. Ivii. 11. Τίνα ευλαβηθείσα εφοβήθης και εψεύσω με. Euripid. in Iphigen. Ημας δο φοίβος, μαντις ών, εψεύσατο. Joseph. Αntig. lib. iii. cap. 10. Ψευσαμένη τον άνδρα επι τοις γαμοις, και τον Θεόν επι τοις όρκους. Ηerodian, lib. ii. cap. 10. Προς δε των εκει στρατιωτών, & ifiurato, šx éto FiotiúsTab. In all these quotations, the word in question is construed with the Accusative, and can have no other signification than to lie, or to impose upon. Chap. iv. 8.
d Verse 9.
XXII. Let us also notice briefly a few of the Divine ATTRIBUTES, which the Scripture ascribes to the Holy Spirit of God. Here the first that falls to be mentioned is ETERNITY, of which Paul speaks in the following words ; “ Christ through the ETERNAL Spirit of“ fered up himself without spot unto God.” To me it appears far more proper to explain the term Spirit here of the third person of the Godhead, than of the Divine nature of the Son. In this passage is distinctly designated, first, the Priest, who is Christ, principally according to the divine nature, or, to use the expression of our Apostle, “ according to the power “ of an endless life;"—then the rictim, which also is
See Vol. I. Note XXXVIII. • Heb. ix. 14.
i Heb. vii. 16. 36 Sec Note LVI.
Christ, principally according to the human nature in which he suffered and died ;-—and in fine, the mystical fire, which is the Holy Spirit, by whom the victim is sanctified and rendered acceptable to God. On the sacred fire which descended from heaven, see Leviticus ix. 23, 24. It was the constant care of the priests, to preserve that fire burning on the altar, and to prevent it from being extinguished ;h and in this sense it might be called eternal, just as the Romans styled the fires of their Vesta eternal. Now, that sacred fire was a symbol of the Holy Spirit, who is called “ fire ;” i who excites the flames of divine love;j and, what chiefly merits attention here, who also renders all sacrifices acceptable to God. “ That the offering up of the Gen
tiles,” says the Apostle, “ might be acceptable, being “ sanctified by the Holy Ghost."" The eternity, too, which in the sacred fire was merely symbolical, is true and substantial in its antitype the Holy Spirit; not only because it is impious to quench him as to the operations of his grace, 1 but principally because he is spoken of by Moses, as existing in the beginning.m
XXIII. After eternity, the attribute which comes next to be mentioned is IMMENSITY. « Whither “ shall I go from thy Spirit ?” says
the Psalmist, “ whither shall I flee from thy presence ?”n I dare not explode the observation of the Anonymous Greek writer on this Psalm, " that by his Spirit is intended the
Holy Spirit, and by his presence, or face, the onlybegotten Son."* Let us see what can be said in
* Anonym. in Catena Græca. & Heb. X. 10.
h Lev. vi. 12. i Dan. vii. 10.
j Song viii. 6, 7. k Rom. xv, 16.
11 Thes. v. 19. m Gen. i. 2.
n Ps. cxxxix. 7.
support of this remark. That the presence of God sometimes denotes the Son, is abundantly evident. God had promised that he would give to the Israelites a Guide to keep them in the way, an “ Angel in whom “ his name was.”. Being afterwards provoked, however, by the base idolatry of the Israelites in making the golden calf, he refuses to go himself with them, and says that he will send an Angel, who should expel their enemies, the inhabitants of the promised land.P But, in consequence of the earnest entreaties of Moses, he promises a second time that his presence shall go before them. And what else is the presence of God now promised, than the same Angel in whom is the name of God? Consider also the following passage in Malachi: “Behold, I will send my messenger,” that is, John the Baptist,“ and he shall
way " for my presence." But what is the presence or face of God, which is to succeed the forerunner ?
“ The “ Lord whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his tem
ple, even the messenger of the covenant whom ye
delight in." For the sake of brevity, I omit other examples. With regard to the reason of this designation; it is evident that our Lord is so called, because that glory and beauty of God which are amiable in the eyes of a sinner, are clearly beheld only in Christ, agreeably to his own words, “ He that hath seen me, “ hath seen the Father." Now this observation is not impertinent: for if the presence of God is here to be taken personally, his Spirit ought surely to be understood in a similar manner. And so we are instructed concerning the immensity of the whole ador
o Exod. xxiii. 20.
p Ex. xxxiii. 2, 3.