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long before his coming, the account given of his person and descent in the genuine Scriptures of the New exactly accords. He is there, in passages too numerous to be enumerated, represented as a man, the son of man, and the son of David.' However, you may examine Matthew viii. 20. xii. 23. xxvi. 72. Mark viii. 38. xii. 35. xv. 39. Luke xviii. 38, 39. xxii. 48. xxiii. 41. John xiii. 31. xv. 24. Acts ii. 22. vii. 56. xiii. 38. xvii. 31. Rom. v. 15. 1 Cor. xv. 21, 47. 1 Tim. ii. 5. Heb. iii. 3. X. 12. Moreover he is described to be of the seed of Abraham,'Gal. iii. 16. Heb. ii. i6. and lastly it is expressly said, “the Lord God Thall give unto him, Jesus, the throne of his father David; Christ cometh of the seed of David; God hath sworn with an oath to him, David, "that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to fit on his throne; of this man’s,' David’s, 'seed hath God, according to his promise, raised unto Ifrael, a favior, Jesus; Jesus Christ of the feed of David. See Luke i. 32. John vii. 42. AAs ii. 30. xiii. 23. Rom. i. 3. 2 Tim. ii. 8.
That Christ Jesus was the common joint offspring of a man and a woman is evident, because, in the preceding large affemblage of texts, extracted from the New, which correspond with the prophetic Scriptures of the Old, Teftament, he is described to be the son of David, and of the feed of David. It may perhaps be urged, that Jefus, though the son of Mary alune, exclufively of an human father, descended from David, might with propriety be stiled the son of David, as being thus born of an human mother, who was lineally descended from that king of Israel. Still this ingenious argument is deftitute of the authority of the divine prophecies to give its full force; which no where warrant us to interpret the Messiah to be the son of David, in this very partial sense of the expression: And an infuperable difficulty occurs, to preclude the possibility of so understanding this characteristical appellative of the Meffiah, in the instance of his being expressly faid to be of the feed of David. Now, how an human being can be affirmed to be of the feed of David, and yet the seed of a man defcended · from David be represented as unconcerned
in the generation of that being, is an ænigma equally incapable of solution, with that incomprehensible arch-mystery of human invention, the Athanafian trinity in unity. Hence it is plain, the expressions, the son of David, and of the feed of David,' are terms fynonimous, implying, that Christ was lineally descended from that king by an human father, and, consequently, as his mother Mary was of the lineage of David, as well as his father, Joseph, by both parents. To suppose Christ to be of the feed of David, if the seed of a man of the lineage of David were not instrumentally employed in the procreation of him, is to be guilty of an unpardonable catachrefis, or abuse of words; which tends to confound all language, and to render articulate speech, which was designed as the vehicle of thought, the indeterminate phraseology of unfeathered magpies, and consequently, men less intelligible one to another than brutes are to fellow-brutes. But, when men once desert the plain meaning of the unambiguous expressions of genuine
Christian Scripture, and attempt to force · them into a congruity with their own fanci
ful theological hypotheses, common sense is exchanged for refined nonsense, revelation becomes a matter unrevealed, and the intelligible language of the latter, and the plain dictates of the former, must yield to the sublime incomprehensibility of mysterious absurdity.
But happily there are certain men who do not maintain, that reason and faith are at variance; all are not bigots to human systems of divinity, are not immovably attached to obscurity, mystery, and absurdity, and are not disposed to excommunicate and anathematize those, who take pains to enlighten their own minds and those of their fellow creatures, by a judicious developement of sacred truths, the happy consequence of free, dispassionate and accurate self inquiry. The select number of men of this stamp, whether they be many or few, will not, I apprehend, be displeased with my submitting this quære to their serious confideration, viz. Whether, as, from the day of the creation of the first man and woman, to the prefent hour, God has uninterruptedly established a method of propagation of the human
species, Species, wherein child-bearing woman cannot conceive, and bring forth, without the previous carnal knowledge of generating man, if the God of nature had thought proper to break in upon this his ordinary System of human procre‘ation, dispense with it in favor of Jesus Chrift, and in respect to him alone, exchange it for a birth purely and solely feminine ; whether, I Say, the predi&tion of Christ as a male-offSpring merely maternal, would not, in that case, have been delivered in terms as plain and intelligible, as are the prophetic descriptions of other minute particulars concerning him, such as his birth at Bethlehem, his riding on an ass into Jerusalem, his being brought as a lamb to the slaughter,numbered with the transgresors, his foul making an offering for fin, bis making his grave with the rich, and yet his prolonging bis days, &c. See Micah, Zechariah, and Isaiah, events, which were all literally fulfilled ?