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which the word presents itself, is that of a proper
And there is nothing to prevent us from taking it in that its primary sense. (See what I have said upon Tit. ii. 13.) The sentence, therefore, contains two proper names, of which the first gror is attended by a descriptive substantive deo rolny, with its epithet, and the second Intev, in like manner by a descriptive substantive
with its epithet. How can a sentence more naturally and obviously divide itself into two parts, or more clearly and distinctly point out, by its structure, two different persons ?
You, however, choose to understand the three nouns δεσπότην, θεον, and κυριον, which are of very different kinds, as if they were all of the same kind. And you make each a personal description of the proper name Inoxv: and then you supply by ellipsis, after each of the two first, the pronoun nuwv, which is annexed to the last only, and which, by that situ. ation, should naturally, unless something urges to the contrary, be joined in construction with that last alone. (See what I have before said upon the similar situation of muw, in Tit. ii. 13.)
This mode of construing the text is just as natural as if, in the following passage, Tuxixos ó ajarrulos adenços xxl 71505 diaxovos (Ephes. vi. 21.), you were to understand the three nouns of different kinds
гуапn705, adenoos, and 71505, as being all of the same kind, viz, as so many personal descriptions of the
proper name Tychichus, and then were to supply by ellipsis, after each of the two first, the word dia xoves, which is annexed to the last only; and thus to consider Paul as calling Tychichus a beloved minister, a brother
minister, and a faithful niinister. Nay, it is little better than it would be in the Alexandrian reading of 1 John v. 20. ο αληθινος θεος και ζωη αιωνιος, to make the three first nouns of the same kind, and by the help of an ellipsis, to join zwnios in construction to every one of them.
Upon this text the compiler furnishes only two greek comments in your favour; and of these the first is not without ambiguity. But if he could furnish two hundred, all clearly explaining the words as you do, such partial testimony, for the reasons I have before given, would have no influence to persuade a fair and proper judge of these things that your interpretation is the true one.
To express that interpretation accurately, in a way that the reader must necessarily so understand the words, the text should have stood thus. xau Inoxv Xpσον τον μονον ημων και δεσπότην, και θεον, και κυριον αρνεμενοι.
The common established version of the words, therefore, is the true version.
For the benefit of your editor, Mr. Burgess, I must observe, that Dr. Whitby understands this text of two persons; and in his “ Last Thoughts,” page 58, produces it, among several others, for the purpose of shewing that, “ it is the highest absurdity to say
that the father and the son have both one and " the same numerical essence, that being in effect to “ make Jude say in this text, denying the only lord “ God, and the same only lord God.” (pages 55, and 58.) Wetstein also, in his Greek Testament, has a long
which is well worth your
reading. He says your interpretation is, valde in. firma, cum articulus non referatur ad voces Jsov xan κυριον, . sed ad vocem Sectolny. And of the whole
passage he says: De duabus distinctis personis intelligi potest, &, si juxta analogiam scripturæ & aliorum scriptorum interpretari volumus, intelligi debet. Nam scriptura Deum patrem millies Gecv vocát, Christum bis vel ter. * He then observes, as others had done
* Dr. Clarke, who has very carefully collected all the texts which have been alledged to support every part of the doctrine of the trinity, reckons up thirteen passages of scripture, in which it has been said, that the title of God is given to Jesus. But I think there is not more than one out of the whole, in which that appellation appears to be fairly and fully, not in the way of inference, but directly, given to Jesus. I am not now speaking of the sense in which that term is applied to him, but of its being applied to him at all, in any sense, or way, whatsoever. It is never applied to him metaphysically, to describe his nature and essence: for the sacred writers had no more idea, in any part of their writings, of saying any thing about the nature of Jesus, than they had of saying any thing about their own natures. But, even in a metaphorical sense, the title of God is, I think, not given to Jesus in the scriptures more than once.
It is given oftener, and with more solemnity, to Moses. See Exod. iv. 16. vii. 1. and Deut. xxix. 6. Your editor, Mr. Burgess, in his table from Dr. Wluitby, has inserted one or two texts not enumerated in Dr. Clarke's thirteen, as instances of this title being given to Jesus. But they are merely inferences, not direct appropriations of the appellation. And of inferences and deductions there is no end. The learned Postellus inferred, that there were 11,000 proofs of the trinity in the Old Testament alone, when interpreted as it ought to be, etymologico-mystico-caballistically.
Your learned editor is rather apt to give a loose to his fancy. I wish he would make more use of his judgment. He would not then, perhaps, flourish away quite so much, with his plain
before him, and among them Dr. Whitby (on 2 Pet. ii. 1.),* that destroins is a term which the scriptures apply not to Christ, but to his Father; and that novos joined to other epithets, is appropriated xal s&ogenu, to the God of Jesus, not only by the scriptures, but by Josephus and other writers. These assertions he confirms by several examples, and concludes with observing that, in your way of construing the words, there would be a woful anticlimax, or rather, upand-down, shall I call it ? Denique cum usus loquendi discrimen faciat inter δεσπόζην, θεον et κυριον, idem usus videtur requirere, ubi tria ista nomina in unum eundemque conferuntur, ut, quod præcipuum est, ponatur ultimo loco, quod medium medio. ScripSisset ergo Judas, si hoc voluisset, τον κυριον, και μονον destolnu, xos Geov, quod etiam Complutenses editores sensisse videntur.
* arguments,' decisive applications,' and ' ample confirma* tions,' nor talk quite so confidently of the perfia establishment • of the divinity of Chrisť by your rule, in a way
that no im. * partial reader can doubt, who is at all acquainted with the original language of the New Testament.'
Those readers who feel disposed to give Mr. Burgess so much credit for his greek literature, as to take his ipse dixit, about the original language of the New Testament, upon trust, will do well to recollect the judicious observation of the celebrated Selden, in his Table-talk :--that “No man is the wiser for his
* “ The comment of the learned Dr. Whitby upon this place “[of St. Peter] is very remarkable,” says Dr. Clarke, who himself has many good observations on the passage of Jude, which we are considering. He has well remarked, that the words God and Jesus Christ in this text, are amply illustrated, and decisively fixed in their meaning, by the words father and son, to which they exactly correspond, in the parallel place of 1 John ii. 22 and 23. He also confirms the common version of the text, by appealing to Clemens Romanus, Athanasius, and Basil. See his Scripture Doctrine, No. 411, and his Reply to Nelson, p. 109, &c.
Abp. Newcome, the last translator of the New Testament into english, adopts thåt reading which omits the word Jeov in this text, and then rendeys the passage : “ denying the only Sovereign, and our “ Lord Jesus Christ.” In all the rest of the foregoing texts, he adheres to the common authorised version.