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disciples and followers, that I could, Paul was willing to suffer in this maneven now, in unaffected love to their ner, if he might have been an instrutsouls,if it imight be of any avail, sincere- ment in bringing the Jewish nation to Jy wish, that as Christ subjected himself embrace the gospel, we may lear? to the curse, that he might deliver us how little those persons hare of his from it,* so I nyself, likewise, were ac-; benevolent spirit, who are unwilling cursed in this manner, after the exa?'* to exert theinselves or give even a ple of Christ, for the sake of these my mite in promoting the spread of the brethren, and kinsinen according to knowledge of Christ, in the ungospeiithe flesh, that they might thereby be i zed parts of the world. delivered from the guilt they have
ZEPHO. brought upon their own heads, and become entitled to the forfeited and re- An Explanalion of Rom. ix. 3.“
For jected blessings of the Messiah's king I could wish that myself were accursdom. Far from revenging the suffer
ed from Christ, for my brethren, my ings of Christ and his followers upon kinsmen according to the flesh.” their guilty heads, like Christ I would Christians have found great difficulwillingly expose myself to all the exe- || ty in understanding this passage.crations of that enraged people. Like Some have supposed, that St. Paul was him, I wonld voluntarily let them ex- willing to be forever 'cast off from ecule upon me the infamous and ac. Christ, if he could by that means save cursed death of crucifixion itself, des- his brethren. This is the most natupising the shame, and bearing tire ex-ral interpretation of the verse, as it cruciating agonies of such a death, if stands in our translation. But they such spfferings you!d avail any thing have found great difficulty in imitatin bringing them to repentance and saling this fervent luse of the Apostle. vatión.
And because they could not bring Inferences.- Ist. How exceedingly themselves to a willingness to be forinclined mankind are to impute bad ever accursed from Christ, and to eninotives to good men in faithfully de- dure endless punishment, amidst the claring the threatenings of God against blasphemies of damned spirits, in orimpenitent sinners. Nothing can morder to save their brethren, they have forcibly evince the truth of this remark been ready to condemn themselves than the solemn appeal of St. Paul, to for want of zeal in religion, and of love The Holy Ghost, in this passage, to to the souls of men. convince the Christian world that he Others have been displeased with was not actuated by a revengeful spir- this interpretation, supposing it inconil, in predicting the rejection of the sistent with love to Christ, to wish Jewish nation for their hardened wick-to be accursed from him, and have edness.-2d. The true Christian or put various, forced constructions upon benevolent man has no heart to return the passage to avoid this inconsisevil for evil, in revenge ; but may ar- tency. rive to such a degree of holiness, as
I will osser one, which I Think obri. willingly to endure all manner of re-ates both these difficulties and makes proaches, and even death itself, at the the meaning of the verse evident. The hands of his bitterest enemies, if bevord which is rendered could rish is could be assured liis suffering in this not optative but indicative, and should manner would avail, as a means, in be rendered wished. The expression the sight of God, in the everlasting sal- is emphatical, and is not merely I wishvation of their souls.--30. Since Sted but I myself wished, &c. The first * Gal. iii. 13. “ Christ liath redeemed us
part of the verse should be translated from the curse of the law, being made a curse
thys; For I myself wished to be accursed fer us : for it is written, cursel is évery one from Christ, and should be reai in a that hangeli on a tree.”
parenthesis. This coustruction make
the verse, taken in connection with believing Jews, having himself once the other verses, plain and beautiful. been an enemy to Christ, as they then It stands thus ; “I say the truth in were. There is no sufficient evidence, Christ, I lie not, (my conscience also however, that this part of the verse bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost,) should be included in a parenthesis, no that I have great heaviness and con- need of it. That the verb rendered, I tinual sorrow in my heart, ( for I my could wish, is in the past time, is acself wished to be accursed from Christ) knowledged ; but this does not render for my brethren, my kinsmen accord-it certain, that the present translation ing the flesh."
is not the true one. For Paul to say, Paul spoke from his own experience. I was wishing myself accursed from Before his conversion, while he was Christ, would be an unapt way of ex" breathing threatenings and slaughter pressing the idea, that he himself had against the disciples of the Lord,” he once been an enemy to Christ. The wished to be accursd from Christ, to phrase, accursed from Christ, as used be anathema. He saw many of his in other places by this same apostle brethren running the same mad careerfimplies some, yea, a very great natural obstinately refusing the offers of salva-evil. That he should use the same tion, and “ wishing to be accursed terins here to designate a moral characfrom Christ.” He knew by experi.ster, which he makes use of in other ence the misery of such a condition, parts of his writings to represent one and his most tender compassion was of the greatest natural evils, cannot excited for them.
reasouably be supposed. To give this Are not many of our brethren, our turn to the expressions puts a manifest kinsmen according to the flesh, in the force upon them. And though the same miserable condition with these verb be in the past time, yet in other Jews ? Let us then imitate this great parts of the holy scripture, verbs in apostle, in exercising great heaviness|the same time have evidently an optaand continual sorrow for them, and en-live meaning, and express a present deavor by all means to bring them to wish. Thus Acts, xxv. 22. Agrippa salvation.
MINOR. said unto Festus, I would also hear the
man myself, apparently expressing a TO THE EDITORS OF THE CONNECT- present wish or desire. And 2 Cor. xi. ICUT EVANGELICAL MAGAZINE.
" Would to God
bear with me a little in my folly." In AS you have admitted into your both which places the verbs in the oriuseful Magazine, two different attempts ginal, are used in the same manner, to explain the apostle's words, Rom. and found in the same tense, as that ix. 3, you may perhaps deemn it not rendered I could wish, in this text ununsuitable to admit a third. His words der consideration. Consequently its are these, “For I could wish that being in the past time is no sufficient myself were accursed from Christ for evidence that it is not meant to express my brethren, my kinsnen, according a present wish,-a present affection of to the flesh.”
the apostle's mind. Mr. Sandaman and several others It may also, be further observed, after him, suppose that the words “ For that to put a construction upon the I could wish that myself were accurs-\passage which necessarily leaves us at ed from Christ," ought to be included an utter uncertainty respecting the dein a parenthesis, and read for I was gree of the apostle's sensibility to the wishing myself accursed from Christ.(angers of his own nation, or the That read in this manner they natural-strength of his benevolent concern for ly suggest a reason for the apostle's|them, does not well comport with the great and peculiar sensibility to the solemnity with which what he was a., wretched state and darger of the unbout to assert, is introduced. What he
i. Paul says,
was about to assert of his affection for 1. It is the nature of moral goodness, the Jewish nation, he prefaces with an and essential to it, that it be ready to vaih; " I say the truth in Christ, I lie sacrifice, and give up a less good for noi, any consciente also bearing me the sake of a greater. If we leave this witners in the Holy Ghost.” A pre-out of our ideas of moral virtue and face worthy the assertion in the text,goodness, there will be nothing left to whea literally understood; but hardly distinguish it froin vice,- from pure necessary, it might be supposed, to selfishness. Consequently, convince those, to whom he wrote of 2. A willingness to abandon and great heaviness and sorrow of heart give up any interest or good which for his kinsmen according to the itesh. may be less, for the sake of one which Many, not satisfied with this con- inay be more for the glory of the struction of the words, suppose that great God and Saviour, is essential to the apostle asserted a willingness to suf-| true moral goodness. Keeping these fer a temporary exclusion from the positions in view, the truth of which communion of the christian church, or will, probably be admitted, let us seek even temporal death, and that of the the meaning of the apostle, when he most ignominious kind, for the good, says, I could wish that myself were ucthat is, the eternal salvation of the Jew-cursed from Christ, for my brethren, ish nation. But we can hardly believe my kinsmen, accor:ling to the flesh. so eminent a saint would feel it ne When the apostle wrote, we will cessary to make a direct appeal to the suppose, which probably does not exsearcher of hearts, to conciliate a be-ceed the truth, the Jewish nation conlief of his readiness to make so small sisted of three millions of people. a sacrifice for so important an object— Paul was one single person-an india sacrifice infinitely disproportioned vidual. Other things being equal, the to the worth of the object for which it nation was capable of enjoying three was to be made! Such a sacrifice as million times the felicity the apostle this, even for the Philipian church, the was capable of not only so, but capaapostle asserts his joyful readiness at ble of enduring three million times the any time to make. Nor does he in misery and wretchedness—and if perthat case preface his assertion by an ishing eternally, actually would endure appeal to heaven for the truth of whatit
, which could possibly fall to the lot he said. His words are, Philip. ii. 17, of the apostle. This respecting those “ Yea, and if I be offered upon the sac- then in actual existence. But we can rifice and service of your faith, I joy hardly suppose, that the tender, beand rejoice with you all.” According nevolent coveern of this great apostle to this construction of the apostle's for that people, extended no farther words the evils mentioned are so very than the then existing generation. The trifling compared with the good to be interest of millions and millions then attaineil, that, instead of taking oath unborn could hardly fail of coming into to his willingness on such a condition his view, and filling and occupying his to undergo thein, one might think he inind. Here, then, in one scale, is woull blush even to mention it. the interest of only an individual; in Would not a parent be thought :oid of the other, that of inany millions. Let uitvral alcction should he refuse such the case be proposed to any iinpartial a sacrifice as this for his children? judge, we can be at no loss how he
That we may judge whether the lit- would decide. Had Paul so much of eral construction of the passage before impartiality, as the eminence of his us, will convey an idea of any thing character for, piety authorises us to beyond that of the natural operation suppose, in a case so palpable, beof benevolence and goodness, the fol-tween interests so inconceivably une: lowing things may be proper to be ob- qual, we find ng room to hesitate what serveu, viz.
his decision would be. Should the
apostle have preferred his own private the least reason to be an cemy to interest, even his owu eternal salvation, hiin, or blaspheine his glorious name., io that of an almost innumerable mul- If he felt a disposition which would titude, the salvation of each individual break out iu eninity and blasphemy on of which was of as much worth as his his being cast off forever, he was in own, could it be thought that he pos- fact of no better spirit than that which sessed the least degree of that spirit re- he had before manifested in: perseculquired by the second great commanding Christ and his church, -his real
thou shalt love thy neighbor temper and disposition still remained as thyself! How, but under the gov- essentially the saine. erminent of a principle entirely selfish, But 2. It is admitted that Paul well could the apostle have ruade such a knew that were he actually accursed choice!
fronn Christ, he shouki become, and Further, were the apostle's primary forever reinain his inveterate enenıy. object, in the desires lie hall of his own A candid attentiou may, nevertheless, personal salvation, the glory of Christ, lead us to see, that this is no sufficient as it certainly was; he couid not but objection against a literat construction be sensible, that other things being of the passage to which we are atiearlequal, Christ would be glorified mill-ing. A lively sense of the dishongi ions and millions of times more in the and reproach cast on Christ, by etersalvation of the whole Jewish nation, nally blaspheming his glorious name, than in the salvation of any individual would be the great thing which influwhatever, be it even himself
. In the enced the apostle, while in the exerexercise of that affection, wherein wecise of truly gracious affection, to view are required to love God with all the it with such aversion and abhorrence'.. heart, and our neighbor as ourselves, This is manifest; because without how then is it possible that he should such affection, no pain is felt under the hesitate to be willing to be accursed apprehension that the pame of the froin Christ, for his brethren, liis kins-Lord Jesus will be forever reproached. men, according to the filesh!
But instead of that, the subject is preWere the glory of Christ and the pared in the state of his own mint, good of others, the great and primary cordially to join in these reproaches. object of the apostle's wishes and dc- But were the whole Jewish nation to sires; so long as in the exercise of be accursed from Christ, and eternally this temper he would enjoy a far high-| perish, other things being equal, there er measure of comfort in the hope and would be many inillion times the reprospect of the salvation of the whole proach cast by thein on Christ, which nation than it is supposable he could could be done by any single person. have in the prospect of any private per- As far, therefore, as the apostle would sopal good whatever of his own. But feel an aversion to being forever anit will be objected, that were Paul ac-athmatized from Christ, from the concursed froin Christ, he would become sideration of the reproach which in a bitter, perfect enemy to him, and an that case, he should cast upon the eternal blasphemer of his glorious Lord; he would from the saine regari
Therefore, that in the exer- to the glory of Christ, feel a much cise of true grace, and love to Christ, I greater unwillingness, that his glorious it is utterly unsupportable he should Lord should be the object of the reexpress, such a wish as the literal proach and blasphemy of millions and construction of the passage under millions of others. consideration implies. To this it inay Since it is clearly revealed that it be replied,
will be the occasion of greater glory to 1. That should the apostle in the Christ that many of mankind would highest and fullest sense of the term be be, and eternally remain enemies to arcursed from Christ, he would not bave him, the truly good and gracione heart
acquiesces in it, and rests satisfied.fsinto our world, and becoming a sacriIt is in the nature of things, and in it-fice for our sins, fell short, and that inself considered, as undesirable that finitely, as it must have done according others should be enemies to Christ, as to the objection, of the good-will, we ourselves; and as far as we are which a literal construction of the pasunder the influence of that love, which sage under consideration, compels us seeketh not her own, we shall feel it to to suppose the apostle felt and ex
On this ground, therefore, an pressed. No other reply need be made aversion to being accursed from Christ to the objection. arising from a sense of the wickedness Thus it appears, that for the apostle of that enmity to him which would to be willing to be accursed from follow, would operate with greater Christ, on the condition expressed, is no strength against many million being ac- more than is required in the command, cursed from him.
to love our neighbor as ourselves; It is further to be observed, that did and was but a portion of the same the apostle possess that benevolent spirit, which Christ manifested in dyspirit which implied a willingness to ing for sinners. be himself accursed from Christ for the sake of the eternal salvation of his
For the Utica Christian Magazire. kinsmen, according to the flesh, it was
A PARABLE. no more than a portion of the spirit which his glorious Lord had manifest A certain man perceived that his ed before him. Christ was not only bouse was not entirely good, especialwilling, but actually did become a ly in stormy weather. He concluded curse for his kinsmen, according to that something must be done; and as the flesh, that they might be the right-it leaked, he determined to put a new ousness of God in him; and with the roof on it; but this was soon perceivspirit be possessed, it was not possible ed not to be sufficient, he therefore put he should in any other way be so hap-Hin some new studs and braces, and py, so could it have been that the apos- then added a new siding, which he cotle was assured that his being accurs- vered with a coat of paint. Soon after ed from Christ was the only and cer- this he found the sleepers giving way. tain way for the whole Jewish nation while he was attempting to replace to be eternally saved; continuing to these, he found the sills to be rotten, and be of the spirit which is breathed out these he found had rotted by resting da, in the text, he could not be so happy the sand. He now learns what he ought in any other way as being actually ac- to have known at first, viz. That he cursed. Should it be here objected, needs a new house that the labor that the evil which Christ endured, which he has spent in repairing the old, when he became a curse, however has been thrown away, 'seeing it was great in other respects, was yet but bestowed on a building which wanted temporary and short, and that being the most essential thing, to wit, a founaccursed from his supplies endless evil, dation. consequently, that we have no example in Christ, of a benevolence so dis The house without foundation is the interested and great, as a willingness in place where the Christless sinner lives the apostle to be on any condition and sleeps. Sickness, bereavement, whatever eternally accursed from and whatever alarms his conscience, Christ, must import. It may be re-l are the storms which discover to him plied, that it must be extremely dis- | the insuficiency of his house to shelter honorable to Christ, and to his glorious him. He thinks however that some character, when we consider how high amendment in his life will be sufficient and exalted it is, to suppose that his to put him into a state of safety. He benevolence and good will in coming || leaves off one sin, and then another;
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