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errors he may have committed during the thirty years preceding; this, in our judgment, presupposes an incorrect idea respecting the general development of moral qualities. This development should always be viewed as a growing whole, its parts dependenton each other; and though great crises, though sudden and extraordinary changes may take place in the same individual, still the earlier moral condition will transmit its influence to the later. Particularly the earlier sins cannot be so absolutely effaced, that traces and effects of them will not be found afterward in the moral consciousness, in the feeling, in the conduct. Every sin has its moral influences, the conscience is stained by it, and prevented from raising itself to that state of perfect innocence, purity and safety which according to the Scriptures must be supposed to have been the state of Jesus. We must either entirely deny, that the testimony of the apostles concerning the excellence of Christ's feeling and conduct is valid, or, if we admit its validity in respect to the years of their intimate intercourse, we must deduce from it the positive inference that his earlier life was also free from sin.” The developments of those three years were merely the result of his earlier life, and cannot be separated from it arbitrarily. Such fruit, as the moral conduct of Jesus, so far as we know it, could grow only from a root thoroughly healthy and sound; and if a part of his conduct was actually perfect, then the whole must have been. We will now consider the second objection, which is, that the apostles could judge of nothing but the outward legality of Christ's deportment, and could not decide upon its internal morality, since this depends upon feeling and motive. It is indeed true that
* Very apt and profound remarks on this subject may be found in Schleiermacher's writings, particularly in the fourth of his Feast-day Sermons, p. 95 seq. We beg that the whole of this sermon, very weighty as a doctrinal one, may be compared with our own views.
*Is the reader, in addition to this, desires express testimony in favor of the earlier period of Christ's life, we may adduce the very important expressions of John the Baptist. That there was an early intimacy between Jesus and John, seems to me in the highest degree probable, (the words, I knew him not, John 1: 31, 33, referring merely to the full recognition of him as the Messiah); and if this be admitted, then the refusal of John to baptize Jesus, his modest retirement at the public appearance of Jesus, in short his whole connection with the Messiah, is a most important and decisive argument for Christ's extraordinary moral elevation in this earlier period of his life.
they could not, as the All-Wise, look directly into his heart; but what is the life other than a representation and development of the spirit? and can we satisfactorily account for such a perfect moral life, otherwise than on the ground of a perfect moral intention 2 such pure conduct otherwise than on the ground of pure motive 2 Shall we derive purity from impurity, goodness from badness Or what one act in the life of Jesus is fitted to encourage the suspicion, that he may at any time have been merely legal in his outward demeanor, without being truly moral? that there may have been a discordance between his feeling and his conduct?" But if, since we have not the least reason for thinking otherwise, the inward and the outward, the feeling and the conduct, the motive and the deed were in Jesus one harmonious whole, then the apostles had a right, and we have the same, to argue from the perfect goodness of the conduct, to the perfect purity of the motive from which the conduct emanated. But should our minds still hesitate, they will be convinced by Christ's own testimony respecting himself, which is of the highest importance. We may rely upon the most entire self-knowledge and veracity of Jesus, on the one hand, and upon his great humility on the other; yea, unless we would introduce into his spiritual and moral nature contradictions, which cannot be proved to exist, we are compelled to attribute to him these qualities. Now this same Jesus, in life and in death a man of truth, a pattern of the purest humility, comes forth with the highest and clearest confidence in his own character, and utters respecting himself these peculiar words, “Who can accuse me of sin **—words which indeed no other mortal without revolting arrogance can repeat after him, and which no other one has repeated, unless it be in frantic fanaticism, or in the most melancholy infatuation. Indeed conscience and the law of nature oblige every one to confess his sin; and still more under the christian system, which develops so clearly the idea of a holy God, and the example of a Redeemer, and the perfect purity of a moral law, must the conviction of sin be deepened in the greatest degree. And accordingly the same John, who reported to us that remarkable expression of Jesus, could with undoubted justice declare, “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” From this declaration, applicable to all men, confirmed by every one's inmost consciousness, Jesus represents himself as an exception; he denies that any one can accuse him of Guaglio. The meaning of this expression is somewhat doubtful. It is a question, whether duaglia is to be taken in the ordinary New Testament sense, as sin properly so called, as moral delinquency; or rather, according to pure Greek usage, as theoretical departure from truth, as error. The last signification seems indeed, at first glance, to coincide more exactly with the context, and particularly to form a more striking contrast to the preceding 	eta, and the succeeding 	slav Aéysty. But in the first place, it would be difficult to point out a decided instance of this use of the word in the Hebrew Greek; and in the second place, we are bound especially to consider, that in the whole passage the knowledge and reception of the truth (v. 47), as well as the rejection of it (v. 44), is placed in most intimate connection with the moral state of the soul. According to this last idea then, the appeal of Jesus to the perfect purity and faultlessness of his moral character, for establishing the truth of his doctrine, would be in no way disconnected and isolated. So far from it indeed, there lies at the foundation of the whole passage the sound principle, that as untruth and error proceed from a sinful bias of the will, so the clear apprehension of truth is most intimately connected with exemption from sin, and indeed is absolutely dependent upon it. Should there be also in the word āuagtiao a reference to theoretical error, still Jesus certainly asserted his faultlessness in knowledge, only so far as he at the same time asserted his faultlessness of will, only so far as he attributed to himself the sival éx tow 350i in the most eminent sense, that is, the most perfect connection with God. In each interpretation of the passage then, freedom from sin is directly implied. The same elevation of the moral consciousness, and the sure conviction of perfect freedom from sin are equally evident in other expressions of Jesus; not only in those where he designates himself as the Messiah, but chiefly in those passages of weighty import, where he says, “I and my Father are one;” “whoso seeth me, seeth the Father.” We are not of the opinion, that there can be derived from the oneness with the Father which is asserted in the first of these passages, the metaphysical idea of oneness of essence, and the whole doctrine of the church concerning the Öuootvia” of the Son with the Father; yet we should be equally unwilling to limit the expression to a bare moral agreement. We would, in accord-. ance with the most excellent interpreters, both of ancient and modern times, refer it immediately to the oneness of power, which the Son has with the Father. And yet oneness of will is necessarily involved in this; for in no respect can there be an entire oneness of rational nature with God, except so far as it is obtained by oneness of will. But wherever there is oneness with the divine will, there must also be, of necessity, perfect freedom from sin. “For how can he, in whom there is only the faintest trace of sin remaining, say that he is one with the Father, the Father of light, him who only is good and pure, and to whom everything approximates, only so far as it partakes of goodness and purity.” Indeed sin is a departure, a separation from God, a turning away of the creature from his holy Creator;4 but where oneness with God is asserted, sin is at the same time absolutely denied. So is it with the words, “Whoso seeth me, seeth the Father;” they are certainly not to be limited to this, that we find something God-like in Jesus, as we can also find it, though connected with imperfection and sin, in every other man; but they are to be understood in a far higher, fuller sense, that Jesus is spiritually and morally an image of God, the resplendence of the Majesty on high, the expression of the divine nature within the restrictions of a human life. No man who is not perfectly good and pure can be
* “It is the dictate of justice, says Kant, that the irreproachable example of a teacher, in respect to that which he teaches, especially if this example is a duty for every man, be ascribed to no other than the most obvious motive, unless there be evidence of some other." Is there any such evidence in the case of Jesus ”
* John 8: 46.
* See John 1: 8, and, upon this passage, Lucke, 111. pp. 98–100. * Some translate the words, perhaps most fitly, who can accuse me of a failing, in which expression there is also a double reference to the practical and the theoretical.
* John 10: 30. 14: 9.
* [Ullmann here refers to the doctrine of Christ's essential oneness with the Father, which was discussed so earnestly during the Arian contests : duoowotos denoting that Christ has the same nature, Öuoto otos denoting that he has a similar nature, and avduotoc that he has a dissimilar nature with the Father.—TR.]
• Schleiermacher's Feast-day Sermons, Vol. I. p. 97.
• Gregory of Nyssa says, “Sin is estrangement from God, who is the true and the only life.” And Chrysostom : “He that sins is far from God, not in place but in disposition." More of the like passages are to be found in Suicer, Thesaurus Eccl. I. p. 209.
called a spiritual image of God. Where sin is in the heart, the man is not holy; where the man is holy, sin is not in the heart. It is a matter, then, of not the smallest doubt, that Jesus ascribed to himself entire sinlessness, holiness, and thereby elevation above all mortals. If we will not receive the peculiarly noble testimony which Jesus gives of himself, if we will not in simplicity confide in his high declarations; there is left us nothing but the fearful alternative of declaring him a visionary, or an impostor. There are
* The question here arises, whether such remarks of Jesus as are quoted above, are not contradicted by the passage, Matt. 19:16, 17, where, in reply to the question of the young man, Good master, etc., Jesus says, “Why callest thou me good, there is none good but one, that is, God.” By this remark, Jesus seems to decline receiving the epithet good, without qualification. We will not avail ourselves of the different reading of this passage, by the adoption of which the difficulty is removed; since it is but too evident, that this new reading originated in the design of removing from the passage its apparently offensive features; and at all events the same expression of Jesus must still remain in the parallel passages, Mark 10: 18. Luke 18; 19. But the contradiction is removed, when we properly consider the circumstances and the relation in which the words of Jesus were spoken. He was conversing with a man, who, although striving after goodness, was yet accustomed to entertain the common pharisaical ideas of virtue, and was not a little satisfied with his own perfect obedience to the law. This is seen by his asking, v. 20, “What lack I yet?” In this situation, it became necessary to teach him, first of all, a humbling lesson of self-knowledge. Jesus does this directly by his own example; by declining the title of good master, as it was misused by pharisaical pride, and by directing the inquirer, in the most significant way, to the ideal of all goodness and holiness, to the only fountain of all goodness, to God. But the young man was not brought to a knowledge of himself by the deep signification of these words, and therefore the heartsearching teacher took a yet stronger hold of his conscience, by demanding of him a sacrifice, on which his imagined virtue was wrecked. Thus is the apparent offensiveness of the passage removed by reflecting on its connections. Jesus is exhibited in it as a living, instructive image of humility; he does not deny that he is good, he only refuses to be called so, in the style of pompous ceremony. Why callest thou me good, he asks; and, speaking as a man on a level with his inquirer, and filled with holy reverence for God, he directs the man to Him, who, in the highest sense of the term, is the only good one, the holy one, the fountain of all goodness. In so far, however, as Jesus is not separate from God in a moral point of view, but one with him, he cannot deny that he is purely good. He constantly derives his goodness however, from the Father, the fountain of holiness. It were well for the reader to consult on this passage, Grotius, and the remarks quoted by him from the older theologians.