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VII. The word atonement, in the original Hebrew, denotes a covering; and in the Greek, an inward change. In the New Testament, the Greek word is invariably translated reconcile, except in the 5th of Romans and 11th verse, where atonement, or At-One-Ment, is substituted. Who is to be covered ? Who is to be inwardly changed? Who is to be reconciled or atoned ? Not the “Father of lights, with whom is no variableness neither shadow of turning ;" who is "the same yesterday, to-day, and for ever,” (James i. 17; Heb. xiii. 8.) Not the Great Jehovah, the Good Shepherd; “I am Jehovah," says he, "I change not; therefore, ye sons of Jacob, ye are not consumed," (Mal. iii. 6.) No, it is man, mutable man, not the immutable one, who is to receive the atonement, or reconciliation. What says the apostle : “God has reconciled or atoned us to himself by Jesus Christ. God was in Christ reconciling or atoning the world unto himself," (2 Cor. v. 18, 19;) “ And not only us, but we also joy in our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have received the atonement or reconciliation,” (Rom. v. 11.)
VIII. Neither karallay, nor its corresponding verb, signify reconciliation or atonement, i.e. at-one-ment, or in agreement, anger, or abatement of it. How, then, is the desired-for covering to be put on, the inward change to be effected, the reconciliation, or atonement, to be received? We answer, in the words of holy writ, “through our Lord Jesus Christ," i.e. his divinely inspired word, through whose sacred and bright truths, immediately we apply them to our lives, the atonement may be said to be received ; inasmuch as this, alone, is the prefigured spiritual sacrifice, the only efficient cleansing of our will, the altar of our minds, which can bring us into atone-ment, or agreement, and conjunction with our Maker, empower us to exchange our evil affections for good affections, and to put on, "as a covering, the beautiful garments of Jerusalem."
We think our correspondent, “ Percunctator," attaches by far too much importance to the efforts of Swedenborgianism. “The new Church!" the very name is enough to condemn it with men of ecclesiastical, nay, scriptural knowledge. If any true Church can be a new one, Christ must have founded a false Church. But the objections, which he states as those on which the members of this new Church build their modest claim to subvert the old, must surely expose it to the contempt of any man capable of comprehending a syllogism.
1. The first Swedenborgian objection proposed by Percunctator, amounts to this :—The scape goat, when the sins of the people were laid upon it, became unfit for the altar ; this is negative evidence that every animal was slain as immaculate as it was selected ; hence, we suppose, it is intended to be argued that the slain animals could be no representation of a vicarious atonement, because the sins of the people were not transferred to it.
The illuminati of the “new church” should have here recollected that, supposing the dispensation of redemption to be such as we state it, it could not have been adumbrated in all its parts by any single
ceremony ; could such have been the case, indeed, the burthensome character of the Mosaic ritual would have been greatly diminished. Nor could any single ceremony correspond minutely to its antitype. Thus the animals were not tortured, though Christ was; and their bodies were consumed by fire, which his was not. The great doctrine to be inculcated in sacrifice, was that of vicarious atonement; and as long as this was distinctly represented, circumstantial peculiarities were disregarded. Thus the sacrifice of the scape goat had two parts ; one goat was sacrificed immaculate, to intimate that our Lord died really so; the other was charged with the sins of the people, to shew that Christ really took away sins. The two goats together clearly conveyed the idea of an immaculate sufferer, and a transfer of sins. The victims are constantly called atonements, sin offerings, &c. Now they were so either literally, or figuratively. Those who deny the atonement of Christ, will not, we suppose, contend for that "of bulls and of goats.” If they were a figurative atonement, what atonement, save that of Christ, they could prefigure, we will thank the new Church” theologians to inform us.
But “the sacrifices prefigure a feast.” We think not. They were feasts. They could not be types of themselves. They were types of gospel joy and salvation through the atonement. See Isaiah xxv. 6; Rev. xix. 9. The partakers of the victim partook sacramentally, and received, by the participation, the benefits of the atonement, which the ceremony represented. The Lord's supper does not prefigure a feast, but it is one; it is that whereby the atonement of Christ is applied to the souls of the communicants. As to the question, "Can what the Deity accepts as food, be the punishments and torments of sinners?" We reply, certainly not, and the sacrifices represented no such thing. They represented the death of Christ, and nothing beside. “Could the Deity accept as food the punishments and torments of his Son ?" No! But the Deity could and did death of his Son as a satisfaction for the sins of the world; and thus he accepted the death of an animal slain in representation of that event, and by his command.
II. The instances quoted by “Percunctator," from the Old Testament, to prove that the prophets“ bore our griefs and carried our sorrows,” wholly ramble from the point, except Ezek. iv., the wording of which, indeed, may suggest a plausible argument; but which, in reality, is to be referred to the same class with the others. In none of the other passages is there any mention of the prophets "bearing griefs” vicariously. What they suffered, they suffered typically; not to deliver the people from suffering the same, but to shew them what would be the consequence of persisting in their sins. Ezek. iv. is to be interpreted on the same principle. God did not lay on the prophet the sins of the people in such a sense that they were to be acquitted in consequence; Ezekiel personated them prophetically or typically, and represented the punishment which their sins would incur. But of Christ it was declared," he was wounded for our transgressions; he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him ; and with his stripes are we healed.” " His own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree.” We
challenge the Swedenborgians to produce any thing like this applied to any other prophet.
III. " But the atonement of Christ by blood must be figurative.” Why?
“It is not natural or material blood which is here meant, but Divine truth, &c." That is, human folly is to determine what was the office of Divine wisdom! If not the blood, but the doctrine of Christ, secures our redemption, certainly there never was a more incongruous or irreconcilable figure of rhetoric than that which puts the former for the latter. Substitute “Divine truth,” for blood, in Acts xx. 28; 1 Pet. i. 19; or in Heb. ix. 12–14: “Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own Divine Doctrine he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. For if the BLOOD of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh : how much more shall the Divine DOCTRINE of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God ?” That is, if a triangle have three sides, how much more shall a square have twenty! Do the Swedenborgians really mean to accuse St. Paul of writing such nonsense as this?
IV. “In the Jewish sacrifices the death of the victim was not regarded as to the idea of punishment.” Why, then, is it spoken of as a sin offering ? "Nor is its dying ever spoken of in the appointment of the ceremonial.” This is contrary to fact. The slaying of the victim is often spoken of, which, we apprehend, is the same thing. “ Is not blood the life?” says the Swedenborgian. If so, it follows that the mention of bloodshedding includes the idea of death.
V. "To sacrifice did not originally mean to slay, to kill, to deprive of life, but to make sacred, devote, and dedicate." What argument the Swedenborgian founds upon this assumption, we know not; but the contrary is notoriously the fact. The verb naj always has the radical meaning of slaughter, and answers to the Latin mactavit. Every offering need not be a sacrifice, though every sacrifice is an offering. But the burning of the Nazarite's hair did not constitute him a burnt offering; nor was Jephthah's daughter, in any sense, a burnt offering, unless she was so in the literal sense. Many commentators think that 10'n bone should be rendered, “or I will offer it up;" and we confess we are agreed with them.
VI. “Sacrifices and burnt offerings were only by Divine permission ; mosT DECIDEDLY not by the Divine concurrence.” What shall we say to such a "most decidedly?" Is it ignorance or impudence? Is the whole Mosaic law, with all its positive commands, forgotten ? Commands which, in many instances, were issued under the severest penalties. And against all this are two solitary places of scripture to be quoted? The Jews, from seeing the application of sacrifices to the expiation of sins, came to understand them, not as the visible signs and instruments of an atonement wrought out by other means, but as the actual atonement for sins, which justified them in living what lives they pleased. This was a kind of transubstantiation. Against this perversion of the doctrine, the texts Jer. vii. 22, 23, and VOL. XIV. NO. VII.
Ps. li. 7, were directed ; and there are other texts to the same effects Sacrifices and burnt offerings could not, certainly, propitiate God; they were the appointed applications of a real propitiation; and, as such, acceptable, and no further. The real propitiation did not extend to impenitent sinners; and, therefore, these could scarcely expect to be expiated by the typical. The heart was what God required; the sacrifice, independently of this, could afford no satisfaction. But the truly religious heart among the Jews, would not fail to offer the sacrifice because this was the command of God. Compare Ps. li, 16, 17, with 19.
VII. The verb , undoubtedly, has the radical meaning of covering ; that it also has the sense of atoning, it seems impossible to doubt. The 7703, or covering of the ark, the LXX. call idaothplov. The derivative sense is taken from the idea of interposing a covering or shelter to protect the sinner. Thus the blood of Christ protects us from the anger of God. The term karallayı, brings us to the same meaning by a different root. It implies, literally, a change in the condition of two parties, and, according to its ordinary acceptation, a change from enmity to peace. This is exactly the state of matters with respect to God and sinners.
THE CHURCH BUILDING SOCIETY.
Report for 1831-1832. The Society, since its last Report, for this important object, the Society has proceeded steadily in the fulfil- has been enabled to contribute 148,1601. ment of its important designs. In the Gratifying testimonies of the accomlast year, 78 new applications have plishment of the Society's designs, been received, and 72 new grants have have been received from different been made. In 19 cases, there have Clergymen, who have received its aid. been additional grants, in consequence The Committee have also the pleaof the increase of accommodation pro- sure to announce the following conposed to be given. The whole num- tributions from Diocesan and District ber of grants made in the last year, Committees:amounts therefore to 91. The sum,
£ s. d. voted by the Committee in aid of the Canterbury Diocesan Com. 140 0 different applications, make a total of Oxford Diocesan Committee .. 73 10 0 11,4891.; and 19,329 additional sittings Plymouth District Committee . 23 19 6
30 have been provided, of which 13,541
Devon & Exeter District Com. 9 3 are free and unappropriated. In the
East Cornwall District Com. 26 2 0
Durham Diocesan Committee . 46 46 preceding year, the sum of 15,4791. was voted, and the sittings provided, The Society's efficiency has been amounted to 24,265.
demonstrated by what it has already Such have been the operations of effected; and it has therefore as strong the Society during the last year. The a claim as ever upon the liberality of total amount of sittings in different all those who feel an interest in its places of worship belonging to the welfaro, and are anxious to promote Church of England, which the Society, its designs. The disposable balance since its first establishment, has as- on the 31st of March, was 14,2961.; sisted in providing, is 227,320; of and as the grants voted in the last these, 166,544 are free and unappro- year, amounted to 11,4891., it is clear, priated, and towards the funds raised that without a continuance of that liberal support, which the Society has free and unappropriated, having been received, it will, ere long, be without obtained by its aid and encouragement. the power of dispensing the aid, from To those who may be desirous of which such extensive good has resulted. promoting the objects of the Society The Committee, therefore, cannot con- by bequests towards the building, enclude their Report, without earnestly largement, or improvement of churches calling the attention of the friends of and chapels in any particular neighthe Church of England, to the claims bourhood, it may be proper to suggest, and wants of this excellent and most that the Society, being now ineorpobeneficial Institution. They found the rated, can act as trustees, to carry into claims of the Society upon the good effect the desired application of any already accomplished, not fewer than funds intrusted to its charge. 227,320 sittings, of which 166,544 are Rev. W. J. Rodber, Secretary.
NATIONAL SOCIETY FOR THE EDUCATION OF THE POOR.
The following Grants were voted that place having been revived, with on the 6th of June, in aid of erecting a prospect of success. New School Rooms ; viz. Scarborough, The Committee assembled again on York, 1701.; Henham, Essex, 201.; the 12th instant, to make arrangeDixton, Monmouth, 201.; Bury, Lan- ments for adopting the National cashire, 2001., and Haworth, York- Schools at Westminster, as the model shire, additional, 101. A Grant of Schools, and training establishment, of 50l. was also restored to the parish of the Society. They are situated near Gnosall, Staffordshire; the plan for the Abbey, and are better adapted for erecting two large School Rooms at the purpose of Central Schools.
Domestic.— The Bill for fixing the boundaries of the newly-enfranchised, or enlarged districts, and those for the Reform of the Scottish and Irish representation,are in progress.—Two amendments of the latter were moved by Mr. O'Connell; one, directly to restore the suffrage to the forty-shilling freeholders, was lost by a majority of 49; the other, to effect the same indirectly, was rejected without a division. A Bill, brought in by the Marquess of Northampton, is also in progress, to annul the practice of seats in the House of Commons being vacated by those members who may be appointed to offices under the crown.
The expression of an irritated populace against the highest characters in the country, we regret to state, has
been most openly displayed. The King did not escape both insult and missiles, when passing through the town of Brentford, and again at Ascot Heath; and the 18th of June, the day which, with Britons, ought ever to be one of the most grateful feeling and attachment toward the Duke of Wellington, was marked by personal insult to him. The Duke had been to the Tower, and on returning home, through the city, was followed and assailed by a mob of miscreants. While at Lincoln's Inn, the members and students collected themselves with the greatest promptitude and effect, and formed a large body, to escort him in perfect security beyond the reach of his enemies, who followed the hero of Waterloo with the base