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remark about the error of Arius; which, you say, “ did « not consist in making the Son distinct from, and really 66 subordinate to the Father, (for that was always the “ Christian doctrine.”) Here you come upon us with general terms, and equivocal expressions; leaving the reader to apprehend that the Christian Church believed the Son to be a distinct, separate, inferior being; in short, a creature, as Arius plainly, and you covertly assert: whereas there is not an author of reputation, among all the ancients, before Arius, that taught or maintained any such thing. A subordination, in some sense, they held; and that is all; not in Arius's sense, not in yours. Well, but you proceed to tell us wherein his error consisted, viz. “ in presuming to affirm, upon the principles of his own “ uncertain philosophy, and without warrant from Scrip66 ture, that the Son was e oux őrtwv, and that v zote : 66 óx ju.” Arius had so much philosophy, or rather common sense, as to think, and so much frankness and ingenuity, as to confess, that there neither is nor can be any medium between God and creature. He was not so ridiculous as to imagine that God first made a substance, and then out of that preexisting created substance made the Son; besides that, even this way, the Son had been, in the last result, & củx Övtwy: nor was he weak enough to believe that any thing, ad extra, had been coeval or coeternal with God himself. If he had, he need not have scrupled to have allowed the like privilege to the Son; the first and best of all Beings, except God himself, in his opinion.
But since you think your own philosophy so much better than Arius's, will you be so kind as to tell us plainly whether the Son be of the same divine substance with the Father; or of some extraneous substance which eternally preexisted; or from nothing? The first you deny directly, as well as Arius; and the second also, by plain necessary consequence: and why then should you differ upon the third, which is the only one left, and must be true, if both the other be false? If Arius was rash in affirming this, he was equally rash in denying the Son's coeternity with the Father, and again in denying his consubstantiality; and so your censure of him recoils inevitably upon yourself. Then, for the other error of Arius, in asserting that the Son once was not; as having been produced, or created, by the Father; in your way, you correct it thusk: True, the Son was produced, brought into existence, had a beginning, and was not, metaphysically, eternal; but yet, for all that, it was an error, in philosophy, for Arius too say, that he once was not. Unhappy Arius ! detested by his adversaries, and traduced by his own friends, from whom he might reasonably have expected kinder usage. Let me intreat you, hereafter, to be more consistent: either value and respect the man, as the great reviver and restorer of primitive Christianity; or renounce his principles, and declare him a herelic, as we do.
QUERY XVIII. Whether worship and adoration, both from men and angels,
was not due to him, long before the commencing of his mediatorial kingdom, as he was their Creator and Preserver ; (see Col. i. 16, 17.) and whether that be not the same title to adoration which God the Father hath, as Author and Governor of the universe, upon the Doctor's own principles ?
YOU answer, that “ though the world was created by “ the Son, yet no adoration was due to him upon that “account, either from angels or from men; because it “ was no act of dominion, and he did it merely ministe6S rially, (p. 94.) just as no adoration is now due from us “to angels, for the benefits they convey to us; because “they do it merely instrumentally.” This is plain dealing; and however I may dislike the thing, I commend the frankness of it. You are very right, upon these principles, in your parallel from angels: had the ancients thought the office of the Son ministerial, in your low
* Pag. 51, 63.
sense, they would have paid him no more respect than they paid to angels; and would certainly never have worshipped him. But I pass on: “ Creation,” you say, “ is “ no act of dominion ;” and therefore is not a sufficient foundation for worship. The same reason will hold with respect to the Father also; for creating is one thing, and ruling another. Yet you will find that Scripture makes creation the ground and reason of worship, in so particular and distinguishing a manner, that no person whatever, that had not a hand in creating; has any right or title to worship, upon Scripture-principles; to which Catholic antiquity is entirely consonant, as we have observed above. I did not found his right of worship on creation only, but preservation too; referring to Coloss. i. 17. “ By him all things consist;" to which may be added, Heb. i. 3. “Upholding all things by the word of his 6 power.” The titles of Creator, Preserver, Sustainer of all things, sound very high; and express his supereminent greatness and majesty, as well as our dependence; and therefore may seem to give him a full right and title to religious worship; especially if it be considered, that they imply dominion, and cannot be understood without it. Besides that Creator, as hath been shown, is the mark, or characteristic of the true God to whom all honour and worship is due. Add to this, that by Joh. i. 1. the Son was Oeds before the foundation of the world; which implies, at least, dominion, upon your own principles : and when he came into the world, “ a He came unto « his own,” (Joh.i. 11.) having been their Creator, ver. 20. xvii. OF SOME QUERIES. 191 and, as is now explained, Governor from the first. Wherefore, certainly, he had a just claim and title to adoration and worship from the foundation of the world, even upon your own hypothesis. As to his creating ministerially only, I have said enough to that point, under the eleventh Query, whither I refer you.
a Unus Deus Pater super omnes, et unum Verbum Dei quod per omnes, per quem omnia facta sunt, et quoniam hic mundus proprius ipsius, et per ipsum factus est voluntate Patris, &c.-Mundi enim factor vere Verbum Dei est. Iren. p. 315.
Verbum autem hoc illud est, quod in sua venit, et sui eum non receperunt. Mundus enim per eum factus est, et mundus eum non cognovit. Novat. c. xiii. p. 714.
Si homo tantummodo Christus, quomodo veniens in hunc mundum in sua venit, cum homo nullum fecerit mundum ? Novat. p. 715. Vid. et Hippolyt. contr. Noet. c. xii. p. 14.
From what hath been observed, it may appear sufficiently, that the divine Abyos was our King and our God long before; that he had the same claim and title to religious worship that the Father himself had; only not so distinctly revealed; and that his enthronization, after his resurrection, was nothing more than declaring the dignity of his person more solemniy, and investing him as b God-man, in his whole person, with the same power and authority, which, as God, he always had; and now was to hold in a different capacity, and with the addition of a new and special title, that of Redeemer. cThey therefore who endeavour to found the Son's title to worship, only upon the powers and authority of the Mediator, or God-man, after the resurrection, (alleging John v. 22. Phil. ii. 10. Heb. i. 6. and the like,) give us but a very lean and poor account of this matter; neither consistent with truth, nor indeed with their own hypothesis. You quote Phil. i. 6. in favour of your notion; and say, that Christ " was from the beginning in the form of “God; yet he did not assume to himself to be honoured “ like unto God, till after his humiliation.” But this position can never be made out from that text. Allowing you your interpretation, about assuming to be honoured, yet this can mean only, that he did not assume during his humiliation, without any reference to what he had done before. It is very clear from John xvii. 5. that our blessed Saviour was to have no greater glory after his exaltation and ascension, than he had “ before the world
5 Ει δε ύψούσθαι λέγεται, και εν τάξει χαρίσματος το υπέρ πάν όνομα δέχεσθαι, sis ixsīvo dnaovóto ougxos i aváy Etui, ris onse ho raà dizu odgxós. Cyril. Aler. Thes. p. 130.
< Clarke's Script. Doct. Prop. 48, 50, 51. Clarke's Reply, p. 239.
“ was. Glorify me with thine own self, with the glory “ which I had with thee, before the world was.” His glory had, to appearance, been under an eclipse, during the state of his humiliation : but after that, he was to appear again in full lustre; in all the brightness and splendor of his divine majesty, as he had done ever before. You think, that “our worship of him, in his own distinct person “ and character, commenced after his resurrection from “ the dead.” I might allow this to be so in fact; and yet maintain, that he always had the same just right and title to religious worship; which must have had its effect, had it been clearly and distinctly revealed sooner. This is enough for my purpose ; inasmuch as I contend only, that the worship due to him is not founded merely upon the power and authority supposed to have been given him after his resurrection ; but upon his personal dignity and essential perfections. He might have had the very same right and claim all along, that ever he had after; only it could not take effect, and be acknowledged, till it came to be clearly revealed. Thus, God the Father had, undoubtedly, a full right and title to the worship and service of men, or of angels, from the first : but that right could not take place before he revealed and made himself known to them. This, I say, is sufficient to my purpose; and all that I insist upon. Yet, because I have a religious veneration for every thing which was universally taught and believed by the earliest Catholic writers, especially if it has some countenance likewise from Scripture; I incline to think that worship, distinct worship, was paid to the Son, long before his incarnation.
Irenæus is d express, that the Abyos was worshipped of old, together with the Father. And this must have been the sense of all those Fathers, before the Council of Nice, who understood and believed that the person who ap
« Qui igitur a prophetis adorabatur Deus vivus, hic est vivorum Deus et Verbum ejus . L. iv. c. 5. p. 232. ed. Bened.
See also Novatian, c. 15. Deum et angelum invocatum.