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An Exposition

[An intimate acquaintance with the Holy Scriptures is a secure haven, and an impregnable bulwark, and an immovable tower, and imperishable glory, and impenetrable armour, and unfading joy, and perpetual delight, and whatever other excellence can be uttered.]


J. Collord, Printer.


UNBELIEF or INFIDELITY is a want of credence in the word of God; or it may be defined, a calling in question the divine veracity, in what God hath either testified, promised, or threatened; and thus it is the opposite of faith, which consists in crediting what God hath said, John iii, 18, 33. It is said that the Jews could not enter into the promised land, “because of their unbelief,” Heb. iii, 18, 19. And the Apostle, teaching the believing Hebrews what instruction they should deduce from that portion of the history of their forefathers, says, as the words literally translated would run, “We are evangelized as well as they were; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it,” Heb. iv, 2. The meaning is, We Christians are favoured with the good news of the heavenly rest, as well as Israel in the wilderness were with the good news of the earthly rest in Canaan; but the word which they heard concerning that rest did not profit them, because they did not believe it. Hence it appears that faith and unbelief are not confined to the spiritual truths and promises of the Gospel of Christ, but respect any truth which God may reveal, or any promise which he may make even concerning temporal things. It is a crediting or discrediting God in what he says, whatever be the subject. Christ could not do many mighty works in his own country, because of their unbelief, Matt. vi, 5, 6; their mean opinion of him, and contempt of his miracles, rendered them unfit objects to have miracles wrought upon or among them. The Apostles’ distrust of Christ’s promises, of enabling them to cast out devils, rendered them incapable of casting one out, Mark xvii, 16; and St. Peter’s distrust of his Master’s power occasioned his sinking in the water, Matt. xiv, 30, 31. The unbelief for which the Jews were broken off from their being a church was their denial of Christ’s Messiahship, their contempt and refusal of him, and their violent persecution of his cause and members, Rom. xi, 20.

Adverting to the infidelity which prevailed among the educated class of Heathens when Christianity first appeared in the world, Dr. Neander observes:--It was Christianity which first presented religion under the form of objective truth, as a system of doctrines perfectly independent of all individual conceptions of man’s imagination, and calculated to meet the moral and religious wants of man’s nature, and in that nature every where to find some point on which it might attach itself. The religions of antiquity, on the contrary, consist of many elements of various kinds, which, either by the skill of the first promulgator, or, in the length of years, by the impress of national peculiarities, were moulded together into one whole. By the transmission of tales, half mythical, and half historical, by forms and statutes bearing the impress of religious feelings or ideas, mingled with multifarious poems, which showed a powerful imaginative spirit, rugged indeed, or, if animated by the spirit of beauty, at least devoid of that of holiness,--all these varied materials were interwoven so completely into all the characters, customs, and relations of social life, that the religious matter could no longer be separated from the mixed mass, nor be disentangled from the individual nature of the life and political character of each people with which it was interwoven. There was no religion generally adapted to human nature, only religions fitted to each people. The Divinity appeared here, not as free and elevated above nature; not as that which, overruling nature, might form and illuminate the nature of man; but was lowered to the level of nature, and made subservient to it. Through this principle of deifying the powers of nature, by which every exertion of bare power, even though immoral, might be received among the objects of religious veneration, the idea of holiness which beams forth from man’s conscience must continually have been thrown into the back ground and overshadowed. The old lawgivers were well aware how closely the 934maintenance of an individual state religion depends on the maintenance of the individual character of the people, and their civil and domestic virtues. They were well aware that when once this union is dissolved no power can restore it again. Therefore we find, especially in Rome, where politics were the ruling passion, a watchfulness after the most punctilious observance of traditional religious ceremonies, and a jealous aversion to any innovations in religion. The belief of a divine origin of all existence is a first principle in man’s nature, and he is irresistibly impelled to ascend from many to One. This very feeling showed itself even in the polytheism of national religions, under the idea of a highest God, or a father of the gods. Among those who gave themselves up to the consideration of divine things, and to reflection upon them, this idea of an original unity must have been more clearly recognized, and must have formed the centre point of all their inward religious life and thought. The imagination of the people was to be engaged with the numerous powers and energies flowing forth from that one highest Being, while to the contemplation of that unity, only a small number of exalted spirits, the initiated leaders of the multitude, could elevate themselves. The one God was the God of philosophers alone. The ruling opinion of all the thinking men of antiquity, from which all religious legislation proceeded, was, that pure religious truth could not be proposed to the multitude, but only such a mixture of fiction, poetry, and truth, as would serve to represent religious notions in such a manner that they might make an impression on men, whose only guide was their senses. The principle of a so called fraus pia [pious fraud] was prevalent in all the legislation of antiquity. But how miserable would be the case of mankind, if the higher bond, connecting human affairs with heaven, could only be united by means of lies; if lies were necessary in order to restrain the greater portion of mankind from evil! And what could their religion in such a case effect It could not impart holy dispositions to the inward heart of man; it could only restrain the open outbreaking of evil that existed in the heart, by the power of fear. Falsehood, which cannot be arbitrarily imposed on human nature, would never have been able to obtain this influence, had not a truth, which is sure to make itself felt by human nature, been working through it,--had not the belief in an unseen God, on whom man universally feels himself dependent, and to whom he feels himself attracted,--had not the impulse toward an invisible world, which is implanted in the human heart,--been able to work also through this covering of superstition. The geographer Strabo thinks that, in the same manner that mythical tales and fables are needful for children, so also they are necessary for the uneducated and uninformed, who are in some sort children, and also for those who are half educated; for even with them reason is not sufficiently powerful, and they are not able to free themselves from the habits they have acquired as children. This is, indeed, a sad condition of humanity, when the seed of holiness, which can develope itself only in the whole course of a life, cannot be strewn in the heart of the child, and when mature reason must destroy that which was planted in the early years of infancy! when holy truth cannot form the foundation of the future developement of life from the earliest dawn of childish consciousness! The thinking Roman statesmen also of the time at which Christianity appeared, as Varro, for instance, distinguish between the theologia philosophica [philosophical theology] and the theologia civilis, [civil theology,] which contradicts the principles of the former, as Cotta in Cicero distinguished between the belief of Cotta, and the belief of the Pontifex. The philosopher required in religion a persuasion grounded on reasoning; the citizen, the statesman, followed the tradition of his ancestors without inquiry. Suppose now this theologia civilis, and this theologia philosophica to proceed together, without a man’s wishing to set the opposition between the two in a very clear light to himself; that the citizen and the statesman, the philosopher and the man, could be united in the same individual with contradictory sentiments, (a division which in the same man is very unnatural,) and then he would perhaps say, “Philosophical reason conducts to a different result from that which is established by the state religion; but the latter has in its favour the good fortune which the state has enjoyed in the exercise of religion handed down from our ancestors. Let us follow experience even where we do not thoroughly understand.” Thus speaks Cotta, and thus also many Romans of education in his time, either more or less explicitly. Or perhaps we may suppose, that men openly expressed this contradiction, and did not scruple to assign the pure truth to the theologia philosophica, and to declare the theologia civilis only a matter of politics. In the east, which is less subject to commotions, where tranquil habits of life were more common, and where a mystical spirit of contemplation, accompanying and spiritualizing the symbolical religion of the people, was more prevalent than an intellectual cultivation opposed to it, and developing itself independently, it was possible that this kind of esoteric and exoteric religion should proceed hand in hand without change for many centuries. But it was otherwise with the more stirring spirits and habits of the west. Here this independently proceeding developement of the intellect must have been at open war with the religion of the people; and as intellectual culture spread itself more widely, so also must a disbelief of the popular religion have been more extensively diffused; and, in consequence of the intercourse between the people and the educated classes, this disbelief must also have found its way at last among the people themselves; more especially since, as this perception of the nothingness of the popular religion spread itself more widely, there would naturally be many who would not, with the precaution of the men of old, hide their new illumination 935from the multitude, but would think themselves bound to procure for it new adherents, without any regard to the injury of which they might be laying the foundations, without inquiring of themselves, whether they had any thing to offer to the people in the room of that of which they robbed them; in the room of their then source of tranquillity under the storms of life; instead of that which taught them moderation under affliction; and, lastly, in the place of their then counterpoise against the power of wild desires and passions. Men saw, in the religious systems of different nations which then came into contact with each other in the enormous empire of Rome, nothing but utter contradiction and opposition. The philosophical systems also exhibited nothing but opposition of sentiments, and left those who could see in the moral consciousness no criterion of truth to doubt whether there were any such thing or not. In this sense, as representing the opinions of many eminent and cultivated Romans, with a sneer at all desire for truth, Pilate made the sarcastic inquiry, “What is truth” Many contented themselves with a shallow lifeless deism, which usually takes its rise where the thirst after a living union with heaven is wanting; a system which, although it denies not the existence of a God, yet drives it as far into the back ground as possible; a listless God! who suffers every thing to take its own course, so that all belief in any inward connection between this Divinity and man, any communication of this Divinity to man, would seem to this system fancy and enthusiasm! The world and human nature remain at least free from God. This belief in God, if we can call it a belief, remains dead and fruitless, exercising no influence over the life of man. The belief in God here produced neither the desire after that ideal perfection of holiness, the contemplation of which shows at the same time to man the corruption of his own nature, so opposite to that holiness; nor that consciousness of guilt by which man, contemplating the holiness of God within him, feels himself estranged from God; nor does this belief impart any lively power of sanctification. Man is not struck by the inquiry, “How shall I, unclean as I am, approach the holy God, and stand before him, when he judges me according to the holy law which he has himself engraven on my conscience What shall I do to become free from the guilt which oppresses me, and again to attain to communion with him” To make inquiries such as these, this spirit of deism considers as fanaticism; and it casts away from itself all notions of God’s anger, judgments, or punishments, as representations arising only from the limited nature of the human understanding. More lively and penetrating spirits, who felt in the world an infinite Spirit which animated all things, fell into an error of quite an opposite nature to this deism, which removed God too far from the world; namely into a pantheism, which confused God and the world, which was just as little calculated to bestow tranquillity and consolation. They conceived God only as the infinite Being elevated above frail man, and not as being connected with him, attracting him to himself, and lowering himself down to him. It was only the greatness, not the holiness nor the love, of God which filled their souls. Yet the history of all ages proves that man cannot for any length of time disown the desire for religion implanted in his nature. Whenever man, entirely devoted to the world, has for a long time wholly overwhelmed the perception of the Divinity which exists in his nature, and has long entirely estranged himself from divine things, these at last prevail over humanity with greater force. Man feels that something is wanting to his heart, which can be replaced to him by nothing else; he feels a hollowness within him which can never be satisfied by earthly things, and can find satisfaction and blessing suited to his condition in the Divinity alone, and an irresistible desire impels him to seek again his lost connection with Heaven. The times of the dominion of superstition also, as history teaches us, are always times of earthly calamity; for the moral corruption which accompanies superstition necessarily, also, destroys all the foundations of earthly prosperity. Thus the times in which superstition extended itself among the Romans were those of the downfall of civil freedom, and of public suffering under cruel despots. But, however, the consequences of these evils conducted man, also to their remedy; for by distress from without man is brought to the consciousness of his own weakness, and his dependence on a higher than earthly power; and when he is forsaken by human help, he is compelled to seek it here. Man becomes induced to look upon his misfortunes as the punishments of a higher Being, and to seek for means by which he may secure again for himself the favour of that Being. The need of a connection with Heaven, from which man felt himself estranged, and dissatisfaction with the cold and joyless present, obtained a more ready belief for the picture which mythology presented, of a golden age, when gods and men lived together in intimate union; and warm imaginations looked back on such a state with longing and desire. This belief and this desire, it must be owned, were founded on a great truth which man could rightly apprehend only through Christianity; and this desire was a kind of intimation which pointed to Christianity. From the nature of the case, however, it is clear that a fanatical zeal, where the heat of passion concealed from man the hollowness and falsehood of his faith, might be created for a religion, to which man only betook himself as a refuge in his misery, and in his dread of the abyss of unbelief; a religion which no longer served for the developement of man’s nature, and into which, nevertheless, he felt himself driven back from the want of any other; and that men must use every kind of power and art to uphold that which was in danger of falling from its own internal weakness, and to defend that which was unable to defend itself by its own power. Fanaticism was therefore obliged to avail itself of every kind of power in the struggle with Christianity, 936in order to uphold Heathenism, which was fast sinking by its own weakness. Although the Romans had from the oldest times been noted for their repugnance to all foreign sorts of religious worship, yet this trait of the old Roman character had with many altogether disappeared. Because the old national temples of the Romans had lost their respect, in many dispositions man was inclined to bring in to their assistance foreign modes of worship. Those which obtained the readiest admission were such as consisted of mysterious, symbolical customs, and striking, sounding forms. As is always the case, men looked for some special and higher power in what is dark and mysterious. The very simplicity of Christianity became therefore a ground of hatred to it.

UNICORN, , Num. xxiii, 22; xxiv, 8; Deut. xxxiii, 17; Job xxxix, 9, 10; Psalm xxii, 21; xxix, 6; xcii, 10; Isa. xxxiv, 7. In each of these places it is rendered in the Septuagint µe, except in Isaiah, where it is d, the great or mighty ones. Barrow, in his “Travels in Southern Africa,” has given a drawing of the head of the unicorn, “a beast with a single horn projecting from the forehead;” accompanied with such details as, he thinks, offer strong arguments for the existence of such animals in the country of the Bosjesmans. He observes that this creature is represented as a “solid-ungulous animal resembling a horse, with an elegantly shaped body, marked from the shoulders to the flanks with longitudinal stripes or bands.” Still he acknowledges that the animal to which the writer of the book of Job, who was no mean natural historian, makes a poetical allusion, has been supposed, with great plausibility, to be the one-horned rhinoceros; and that Moses also very probably meant the rhinoceros, when he mentions the unicorn as having the strength of God.

“There are two animals,” says Bruce, “named frequently in Scripture, without naturalists being agreed what they are. The one is the behemoth, the other the reem; both mentioned as types of strength, courage, and independence on man; and, as such, exempted from the ordinary lot of beasts, to be subdued by him, or reduced under his dominion. The behemoth, then, I take to be the elephant; his history is well known, and my only business is with the reem, which I suppose to be the rhinoceros. The derivation of this word, both in the Hebrew and Ethiopic, seems to be from erectness, or standing straight. This is certainly no particular quality in the animal itself, which is not more, nor even so much erect as many other quadrupeds, for its knees are rather crooked; but it is from the circumstance and manner in which his horn is placed. The horns of all other animals are inclined to some degree of parallelism with the nose, or os frontis, [front bone.] The horn of the rhinoceros alone is erect and perpendicular to this bone, on which it stands at right angles; thereby possessing a greater purchase or power, as a lever, than any horn could possibly have in any other position. This situation of the horn is very happily alluded to in the sacred writings: ‘My horn shalt thou exalt like the horn of a reem,’reem,’ Psalm xcii, 10. And the horn here alluded to is not wholly figurative, but was really an ornament worn by great men in the days of victory, preferment, or rejoicing, when they were anointed with new, sweet, or fresh oil; a circumstance which David joins with that of erecting the horn. Balaam, a priest of Midian, and so in the neighbourhood of the haunts of the rhinoceros, and intimately connected with Ethiopia, for they themselves were shepherds of that country, in a transport, from contemplating the strength of Israel, whom he was brought to curse, says, that they had as it were the strength of the reem, Num. xxiii, 22. Job, xxxix, 9, 10, makes frequent allusion to his great strength, ferocity, and indocility. Isaiah, xxxiv, 7, who of all the prophets seems to have known Egypt and Ethiopia the best, when prophesying about the destruction of Idumea, says, that the reem shall come down with the fat cattle: a proof that he knew his habitation was in the neighbourhood. In the same manner as when foretelling the desolation of Egypt, he mentions, as one manner of effecting it, the bringing down the fly from Ethiopia, Isa. vii, 18, 19, to meet the cattle in the desert and among the bushes, and destroy them there, where that insect did not ordinarily come but on command, Exodus viii, 22, and where the cattle fled every year, to save themselves from that insect.

“The rhinoceros in Geez is called arwé harish, and in the Amharic auraris, both which names signify the large wild beast with the horn. This would seem as if applied to the species that had but one horn. The Ethiopic text renders the word reem, arwe harish, and this the Septuagint translates µe, or unicorn. If the Abyssinian rhinoceros had invariably two horns, it seems to me improbable the Septuagint would call him µe, especially as they must have seen an animal of this kind exposed at Alexandria in their time, when first mentioned in history, at an exhibition given to Ptolemy Philadelphus, at his accession to the crown, before the death of his father. The principal reason for translating the word reem unicorn, and not rhinoceros, is from a prejudice that he must have but one horn. But this is by no means so well founded, as to be admitted as the only argument for establishing the existence of an animal, which never has appeared after the search of so many ages. Scripture speaks of the horns of the unicorn, Deut. xxxiii, 17; Psalm xxii, 21; so that even from this circumstance the reem may be the rhinoceros as the rhinoceros may be the unicorn.”

In the book of Job, xxxix, 9, 10, the reem is represented as an unmanageable animal, which, although possessed of sufficient strength to labour, sternly and pertinaciously refused to bend his neck to the yoke.

Will the reem submit to serve thee
Will he, indeed, abide at thy crib
Canst thou make his harness bind the reem to the furrow
Will he, forsooth, plough up the valleys for thee
Wilt thou rely on him for his great strength,
937And commit thy labour unto him
Wilt thou trust him that he may bring home thy grain,
And gather in thy harvest

The rhinoceros, in size, is only exceeded by the elephant; and in strength and power is inferior to no other creature. He is at least twelve feet in length, from the extremity of the snout to the insertion of the tail; six or seven feet in height, and the circumference of the body is nearly equal to its length. He is particularly distinguished from the elephant and all other animals by the remarkable and offensive weapon he carries upon his nose. This is a very hard horn, solid throughout, directed forward, and has been seen four feet in length. Mr. Browne, in his Travels, says, that the Arabians call the rhinoceros abu-kurn, “father of the one horn.” The rhinoceros is very hurtful, by the prodigious devastation which he makes in the fields. This circumstance peculiarly illustrates the passage from Job. Instead of trusting him to bring home the grain, the husbandman will endeavour to prevent his entry into the fields, and hinder his destructive ravages. In a note upon this passage, Mr. Good says, “The original reem, by all the older translators rendered rhinoceros, or unicorn, is by some modern writers supposed to be the bubalus, bison, or wild ox. There can be no doubt that rhinoceros is the proper term; for this animal is universally known in Arabia, by the name of reem, to the present day.” The rhinoceros, though next in size, yet in docility and ingenuity greatly inferior, to the elephant, has never yet been tamed, so as to assist the labours of mankind, or to appear in the ranks of war. The rhinoceros is perfectly indocile and untractable, though neither ferocious nor carnivorous. He is among large animals what the hog is among smaller ones, brutal and insensible; fond of wallowing in the mire, and delighting in moist and marshy situations near the banks of rivers. He is, however, of a pacific disposition; and, as he feeds on vegetables, has few occasions for conflict. He neither disturbs the less, nor fears the greater, beasts of the forest, but lives amicably with all. He subsists principally on large succulent plants, prickly shrubs, and the branches of trees; and lives to the age of seventy or eighty years.

UNITARIANS, a comprehensive term, including all who believe the Deity to subsist in one person only. The chief article in the religious system of the Unitarians is, that Christ was a mere man. But they consider him as the great instrument in the hands of God of reversing all the effects of the fall; as the object of all the prophecies from Moses to his own time; as the great bond of union to virtuous and good men, who, as Christians, make one body in a peculiar sense. The Socinian creed was reduced to what Dr. Priestley calls Humanitarianism, by denying the miraculous conception, the infallibility, and the impeccability of the Saviour; and, consequently, his right to any divine honours or religious worship. As to those texts which declare that Jesus Christ “knew no sin,” &c, his followers explain them in the sense in which it is said of believers, “Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin,” 1 John iii, 9. Or, if this be not satisfactory, Dr. Priestley refers us to the “Theological Repository,” “in which,” he says, “I think I have shown that the Apostle Paul often reasons inconclusively; and, therefore, that he wrote as any other person of his turn of mind or thinking, and in his situation, would have written, without any particular inspiration. Facts, such as I think I have there alleged, are stubborn things, and all hypotheses must be accommodated to them.” Nor is this sentiment peculiar to Dr. Priestley. Mr. Belsham says, “The Unitarian doctrine is, that Jesus of Nazareth was a man constituted in all respects like other men, subject to the same infirmities, the same ignorance, prejudices, and frailties; descended from the family of David, the son of Joseph and Mary, though some indeed still adhere to the popular opinion of the miraculous conception; that he was born in low circumstances, having no peculiar advantages of education or learning, but that he was a man of exemplary character; and that, in conformity to ancient prophecy, he was chosen and appointed by God to introduce a new moral dispensation into the world, the design of which was to abolish the Jewish economy, and to place believing Gentiles upon an equal ground of privilege and favour with the posterity of Abraham; in other words, he was authorized to reveal to all mankind, without distinction, the great doctrine of a future life, in which men shall be rewarded according to their works.” Mr. Belsham goes on to state the Unitarian opinion to be, that Jesus was not conscious of his high character till after his baptism; that he afterward spent some time in the wilderness, where he was invested with miraculous powers, and favoured with heavenly visions, like St. Paul, 2 Cor. xii, in which he supposed himself taken up into heaven, and in consequence of which he speaks of his descent from heaven; that he exercised his ministry on earth for the space of a year or more, and then suffered death upon the cross, not to exhibit the evil of sin, or in any sense to make atonement for it, but as a martyr to the truth, and as a necessary preliminary to his resurrection, which they consider as a pledge of the resurrection of mankind. Many also believe that Jesus maintained some personal and sensible connection with the church during the apostolic age, and the continuance of miraculous powers in the church. They farther believe that he is appointed to revisit the earth, and to judge the world,--a difficult task one would suppose, if “he be constituted,” as said above, “in all respects like other men, subject to the same ignorance, prejudices frailties,” &c! So this blasphemous system contains, in this respect, and in almost every other, its own refutation. See Socinians.

The creed which the celebrated council of Nice established, says Grier, in his “Epitome of General Councils,” is that which Christians now profess; the errors and impieties which it condemned are those which, according to the 938refinements of Socinus, his followers of the present day have moulded into their antichristian system. Arius, a presbyter in the church of Alexandria, a man of consummate talent and address, but of a cold and speculative mind, impiously maintained that there had been a time when the Son of God was not; that he was capable of virtue and vice; and that he was a creature, and mutable as creatures are! It is true that Arius held a qualified preëxistence, when he said that God created the Son from nothing before he created the world; in other words, that the Son was the first of created beings; but such preëxistence does not imply coëxistence or coëternity with the Father. After this manner did he deny the divinity of the Son, and his coëternity with the Father. Seduced by the pride of reasoning, no less than by his fondness for novelty, did he likewise reject the µsa, as it is called, or the tenet of the Son being of the same substance with the Father. The blasphemies of Arius consisted in the denial of Christ’s being either co-eternal or consubstantial with God. After a lapse of twelve centuries, Socinus lowered him another step by declaring his inferiority to the Father; for that he, as well as all other things, was subject to the supreme Creator of the universe; and although he held his mere humanity, yet, inconsistently enough, he would offer him divine worship! Inconsistently it may be said, because the Socinian, on his own principles, thereby incurs the guilt of idolatry as much as the Roman Catholic who worships the Virgin Mary, a mere created being. The Unitarian, or Humanitarian, sinks the character of the Saviour still lower, by withholding all worship from him; and while he considers him as a mere man, and therefore as not possessing the attributes of the Deity, with an inconsistency as singular as that of Socinus, he acknowledges his divinity so as to call him God; as if the terms Deity and Divinity bore different significations, or as if the principle which constituted the essence of the Godhead were separable from the Godhead itself! It should be observed, that the lowest denomination of unbelievers in the descending scale, namely, the modern Unitarian, combines with his own peculiar errors and impieties all the errors and impieties of both Arius and Socinus, together with an absolute denial of the Holy Ghost being a divine Person. Having touched on the shades of difference which exist between the followers of Arius and Socinus, a more minute detail of the division and subdivision of the classes into which they may be ranged may not be unacceptable to the reader: Arians and Semi-Arians constituted the original distinction; that of a subsequent day was high and low Arians. The high Arians entertain the highest views of the mediatorial influence of Christ, and believe in the entire Scriptures; the low Arians run into the opposite extreme, yet neither high nor low Arians consider Christ to be truly God. The old Socinians admitted the miraculous conception, and the worship of the Son; the modern Socinians do not; a circumstance that identifies the modern Socinian with the Unitarian. Some high Arians, such as Dr. Samuel Clarke, &c, thought that Christ might be worshipped; others of them affect to have no distinct notion of what the Holy Ghost meant, and to believe that worship is not to be addressed to Christ, but through Christ! These variations in the Unitarian creed have been deduced from the evidence of Unitarians themselves, given before the Commissioners of Education Inquiry in Ireland in 1826, as detailed in their Report to Parliament; a circumstance that renders them the more valuable, as it imparts to them a living, speaking authority. It must, however, be observed, that motley as they are, they all terminate in one point, the rejection of Christ’s divinity; and that, diversified as the distinctions appear to be, they all will be ultimately found to be without a shadow of difference. In short, Arians, Socinians, Unitarians, &c, not only agree with each other in their antichristian scheme; but can scarcely be said to differ from the infidel Musselmans, who are taught by their Koran to regard Christ as a great prophet, and the forerunner of their own. With Deism doubtless Unitarianism has an intimate alliance. For Deists reject all the doctrines of the Christian revelation, while Unitarians reject all its peculiar doctrines: 1. The Trinity of Persons in the Godhead. 2. The divinity of Christ. 3. The personality of the Holy Spirit. 4. The miraculous birth of Christ. 5. The atonement of Christ. 6. The sanctification of the Spirit. 7. The existence of angels and spirits; 8. And, therefore, of the devil and his angels. “In what, then,” says the learned Dr. Burgess, bishop of Salisbury, after this enumeration of the peculiar doctrines of Christianity, “does Unitarianism differ from Deism Deists deny the essential doctrines of Christianity by rejecting the whole of the Christian revelation; Unitarians reject the Christian revelation by denying all its peculiar and essential doctrines.”

UNIVERSALISTS. Those who believe that Christ so died for all, that, before he shall have delivered up his mediatorial kingdom, all fallen creatures shall be brought to a participation of the benefits of his death, in their restoration to holiness and happiness. They are called also Universal Restorationists, and their doctrine, the doctrine of universal restoration. Some of its friends have maintained it, also, under the name of universal salvation; but perhaps the former name is that by which it should be distinguished; for the Universalists do not hold any universal exemption from future punishment, but merely the recovery of all those that shall have been exposed to it.[A] They have likewise a just claim to this title on other grounds; for their doctrine, which includes the restoration, or “restitution of all the intelligent offspring of God,” or of all

[Footnote A: This may be true in respect to the Universalists in Europe; but in America there are those who deny any future punishment whatever. In this country also they have formed themselves into separate and distinct societies. Am. Ed.] 939“lapsed intelligences,” seems to embrace even the fallen angels. They admit the reality and equity of future punishment; but they contend that it will be corrective in its nature, and limited in its duration. They teach the doctrine of election, but not in the exclusive Calvinistic sense of it. They suppose that God has chosen some for the good of all; and that his final purpose toward all is intimated by his calling his elect the first-born and the first-fruits of his creatures, which, say they, implies other branches of his family, and a future ingathering of the harvest of mankind. They teach, also, that the righteous shall have part in the first resurrection, shall be blessed and happy, and be made priests and kings to God and to Christ in the millennial kingdom, and that over them the second death shall have no power; that the wicked will receive a punishment apportioned to their crimes; that punishment itself is a mediatorial work, and founded upon mercy, and, consequently, that it is a means of humbling, subduing, and finally reconciling the sinner to God. They add, that the words rendered “eternal,” “everlasting,” “for ever,” and “for ever and ever,” in the Scriptures, are frequently used to express the duration of things that have ended or must end; and if it is contended that these words are sometimes used to express proper eternity, they answer, that then the subject with which the words are connected must determine the sense of them; and as there is nothing in the nature of future punishment which can be offered as a reason why it should be endless, they infer that the above words ought always to be taken in a limited sense when connected with the infliction of misery.

Those who deny the eternity of future punishments have not formed themselves into any separate body or distinct society; but are to be found in most Christian countries, and among several denominations. Their doctrines form part of the creed of some Arians, as of Mr. Whiston; of many Deists, as of Mr. Hobbes, Mr. Tindal, &c; and of most Socinians. Nor need we be surprised that libertines and atheists hold it, and that they strive to bring others over to their opinion. “The tyranny of priests,” said Dupont the atheist, in the national convention, December, 1792, “extends their opinion to another life, of which they have no other idea than that of eternal punishment; a doctrine which some men have hitherto had the good nature to believe. But these prejudices must now fall: we must destroy them, or they will destroy us.” The Mennonites in Holland have long held the doctrine of the Universalists; the people called Dunkers, or Tunkers, in America, descended from the German Baptists, hold it; and also the Shakers. Excellent refutations of this specious system have been published by the Rev. S. Jerram, and the Rev. Daniel Isaac.

The Arminians are sometimes called “Universalists,” on account of their holding the tenet of general redemption; in opposition to the Calvinists, who, from their specifically restricting the saving grace of God to certain fore ordained individuals, receive the denomination of “Particularists.” By the epithet “Hypothetical Universalists,” are designated on the continent those who have adopted the theological system of Amyraut and Cameron, but who are better KNOWN in this country as “Baxterians.” See Amyraut, Baxterianism, and Cameron.

UPPER ROOM. The principal rooms anciently in Judea were those above, as they are to this day at Aleppo; the ground floor being chiefly made use of for their horses and servants. “The house in which I am at present living,” says, Jowett, “gives what seems to be a correct idea of the scene of Eutychus’ falling from the upper loft while St. Paul was preaching, Acts xx, 6–12. According to our idea of houses, the scene is very far from intelligible; and, beside this, the circumstance of preaching generally leaves on the mind of cursory readers the notion of a church. To describe this house, which is not many miles distant from the Troad, and perhaps, from the unchanging character of oriental customs, nearly resembles the houses then built, will fully illustrate the narrative. On entering my host’s door, we find the first floor entirely used as a store: it is filled with large barrels of oil, the produce of the rich country for many miles round: this space, so far from being habitable, is sometimes so dirty with the dripping of the oil, that it is difficult to pick out a clean footing from the door to the first step of the staircase. On ascending, we find the first floor, consisting of an humble suit of rooms, not very high; these are occupied by the family for their daily use. It is on the next story that all their expense is lavished: here my courteous host has appointed my lodging: beautiful curtains and mats, and cushions to the divan, display the respect with which they mean to receive their guest. Here, likewise, their splendour, being at the top of the house, is enjoyed by the poor Greeks with more retirement, and less chance of molestation from the intrusion of Turks: here, when the professors of the college waited upon me to pay their respects, they were received in ceremony, and sat at the window. The room is both higher and also larger than those below; it has two projecting windows; and the whole floor is so much extended in front beyond the lower part of the building, that the projecting windows considerably overhang the street. In such an upper room, secluded, spacious, and commodious, St. Paul was invited to preach his parting discourse. The divan, or raised seat, with mats or cushions, encircles the interior of each projecting window; and I have remarked that when the company is numerous, they sometimes place large cushions behind the company seated on the divan; so that a second tier of company, with their feet upon the seat of the divan, are sitting behind, higher than the front row. Eutychus, thus sitting, would be on a level with the open window; and, being overcome with sleep, he would easily fall out from the third loft of the house into the street, and be almost certain, from such a height, to lose 940his life. Thither St. Paul went down, and comforted the alarmed company by bringing up Eutychus alive. It is noted that ‘there were many lights in the upper chamber.’ The very great plenty of oil in this neighbourhood would enable them to afford many lamps; the heat of these and so much company would cause the drowsiness of Eutychus, at that late hour, and be the occasion, likewise, of the windows being open.”

URIM AND THUMMIM. The high priests of the Jews, we are told, consulted God in the most important affairs of their commonwealth, and received answers by the Urim and Thummim. What these were, is disputed among the critics. Josephus, and some others, imagine the answer was returned by the stones of the breastplate appearing with an unusual lustre when it was favourable, or in the contrary case dim. Others suppose, that the Urim and Thummim were something enclosed between the folding of the breastplate; this some will have to be the tetragrammaton, or the word Jehovah. Christophorus de Castro, and after him Dr. Spencer, maintain them to be two little images shut up in the doubling of the breastplate, which gave the oracular answer from thence by an articulate voice. Accordingly, they derive them from the Egyptians, who consulted their lares, and had an oracle, or teraphim, which they called Truth. This opinion, however, has been sufficiently confuted by the learned Dr. Pococke and by Witsius. The more common opinion among Christians concerning the oracle by Urim and Thummim, and which Dr. Prideaux espouses, is, that when the high priest appeared before the veil, clothed with his ephod and breastplate, to ask counsel of God, the answer was given with an audible voice from the mercy seat, within the veil; but, it has been observed, that this account will by no means agree with the history of David’s consulting the oracle by Abiathar, 1 Sam. xxiii, 9, 11; xxx, 7, 8; because the ark, on which was the mercy seat, was then at Kirjathjearim; whereas David was in the one case at Ziklag, and in the other in the forest of Hareth. Braunius and Hottinger have adopted another opinion: they suppose, that, when Moses is commanded to put in the breastplate the Urim and Thummim, signifying lights and perfections in the plural number, it was meant that he should make choice of the most perfect set of stones, and have them so polished as to give the brightest lustre; and, on this hypothesis, the use of the Urim and Thummim, or of these exquisitely polished jewels, was only to be a symbol of the divine presence, and of the light and perfection of the prophetic inspiration; and, as such, constantly to be worn by the high priest in the exercise of his sacred function, especially in consulting the oracle.

Michaëlis observes: That in making distributions of property, and in cases of disputes relative to meum [mine] and tuum, [thine,] recourse was had to the lot, in default of any other means of decision, will naturally be supposed. The whole land was partitioned by lot; and that, in after times, the lot continued to be used, even in courts of justice, we see from Prov. xvi, 33; xviii, 18; where we are expressly taught to remember, that it is Providence which maketh the choice, and that therefore we ought to be satisfied with the decision of the lot, as the will of God. It was for judicial purposes, in a particular manner, that the sacred lot called Urim and Thummim was employed; and on this account the costly embroidered pouch, in which the priest carried this sacred lot on his breast, was called the judicial ornament. “But was this sacred lot used likewise in criminal trials” Yes, says Michaëlis, only to discover the guilty, to convict them; for in the only two instances of its use in such cases which occur in the whole Bible, namely, in Joshua vii, 14–18, 1 Sam. xiv, 37–45, we find the confessions of the two delinquents, Achan and Jonathan, annexed. It appears also to have been used only in the case of an oath being transgressed which the whole people had taken, or the leader of the host in their name, but not in the case of other crimes; for an unknown murder, for example, was not to be discovered by recourse to the sacred lot.

The inner sanctuary, within the veil of the tabernacle, observes Dr. Hales, or most holy place, was called the oracle, 1 Kings vi, 16, because there the Lord communed with Moses, face to face, and gave him instructions in cases of legal difficulty or sudden emergency, Exod. xxv, 22; Num. vii, 89; ix, 8; Exod. xxxiii, 11; a high privilege granted to none of his successors. After the death of Moses a different mode was appointed for consulting the oracle by the high priest, who put on “the breastplate of judgment,” a principal part of the pontifical dress, on which were inscribed the words Urim and Thummim, emblematical of divine illumination; as the inscription on his mitre, “Holiness to the Lord,” was of sanctification, Exod. xxviii, 30–37; Lev. viii, 8. Thus prepared, he presented himself before the Lord to ask counsel on public matters, not in the inner sanctuary, which he presumed not to enter, except on the great day of national atonement, but without the veil, with his face toward the ark of the covenant, inside; and behind him, at some distance, without the sanctuary, stood Joshua, the judge, or person who wanted the response, which seems to have been given with an audible voice from within the veil, Num. xxvii, 21, as in the case of Joshua, vi, 6–15; of the Israelites during the civil war with Benjamin, Judges xx, 27, 28; on the appointment of Saul to be king, when he hid himself, 1 Sam. x, 22–24; of David, 1 Sam. xxii, 10; xxiii, 2–12; xxx, 8; 2 Sam. v, 23, 24; of Saul, 1 Sam. xxviii, 6. This mode of consultation subsisted under the tabernacle erected by Moses in the wilderness, and until the building of Solomon’s temple; after which we find no instances of it. The oracles of the Lord were thenceforth delivered by the prophets; as by Ahijah to Jeroboam, 1 Kings xi, 29; by Shemaiah to Rehoboam, 1 Kings xii, 22; by Elijah to Ahab, 1 Kings xvii, 1; xxi, 17–29; by Michaiah to Ahab and Jehoshaphat, 1 Kings xxii, 7; by Elisha to Jehoshaphat and Jehoram, 9412 Kings iii, 11–14; by Isaiah to Hezekiah, 2 Kings xix, 6–34; xx, 1–11; by Huldah to Josiah, 2 Kings xxii, 13–20; by Jeremiah to Zedekiah, Jer. xxxii, 3–5, &c. After the Babylonish captivity, and the last of the prophets, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi, the oracle ceased; but its revival was foretold by Ezra, ii, 63, and accomplished by Christ, who was himself the oracle, under the old and new covenants, Gen. xv, 1; John i, 1. See Breastplate.

USURY, profit or gain from lending money or goods. Moses enacted a law to the effect that interest should not be taken from a poor person, neither for borrowed money, nor for articles of consumption, for instance, grain, which was borrowed with the expectation of being returned, Exod. xxii, 25; Lev. xxv, 35–37. A difficulty arose in determining who was to be considered a poor person in a case of this kind; and the law was accordingly altered in Deut. xxiii, 20, 21, and extended in its operation to all the Hebrews, whether they had more or less property; so that interest could be lawfully taken only of foreigners. As the system of the Jews went to secure every man’s paternal inheritance to his own family, they could not exact it from their brethren, but only from strangers. As the law of nature does not forbid the receipt of moderate interest in the shape of rent, for the use of lands or houses, neither does it prohibit it for the loan of money or goods. When one man trades with the capital of another, and obtains a profit from it, he is bound in justice to return a part of it to his benefactor, who, in the hands of God, has been a second cause of “giving him power to get wealth.” But should Divine Providence not favour the endeavours of some who have borrowed money, the duty of the lenders is to deal gently with them, and to be content with sharing in their losses, as they have been sharers in their gains. The Hebrews were therefore exhorted to lend money, &c, as a deed of mercy and brotherly kindness, Deut. xv, 7–11; xxiv, 13. And hence it happens that we find encomiums every where bestowed upon those who were willing to lend without insisting upon interest for the use of the thing lent, Psalm xv, 15; xxxvii, 21, 26; cxii, 5; Prov. xix, 17; Ezek. xviii, 8. This regulation in regard to taking interest was very well suited to the condition of a state that had been recently founded, and which had but very little mercantile dealings; and its principle, though not capable of being generally introduced into communities that are much engaged in commerce, may still be exercised toward those who stand toward us in the relation of brethren.

UZ, Land of, the country of Job. As there were three persons of this name, namely, the son of Aram, the son of Nahor, and the grandson of Seir the Horite, commentators are divided in their opinion as to the situation of the country meant by the land of Uz. Bochart, Spanheim, Calmet, Wells, and others, place it in Arabia Deserta. Michaëlis places it in the valley of Damascus; which city was, in fact, built by Uz, the grandson of Shem. Archbishop Magee, Bishop Lowth, Dr. Hales, Dr. Good, and others, with more reason, fix the scene of the history of Job in Idumea. This is also the opinion of Mr. Horne, who refers for a confirmation of it to Lam. iv, 21, where Uz is expressly said to be in Edom; and to Jer. xlix, 7, 8, 20; Ezek. xxv, 13; Amos i, 11, 12; Obad. 8, 9, where both Teman and Dedan are described as inhabitants of Edom. In effect, says Mr. Horne, nothing is clearer than that the history of an inhabitant of Idumea is the subject of the poem which bears the name of Job, and that all the persons introduced into it were Idumeans, dwelling in Idumea; in other words, Edomite Arabs.