The Sufferings of Christ. - Part 5

The Bible Treasury - Volume 2



I said I would take notice of the quotations from ancient writers on the point of Christ's vicarious life and living sufferings. What I have already said will have proved that views of His sufferings, in which, what I avow is to me more precious than clearness, true piety may be found, not only fail in clearness but are superficial in their nature. And this is real loss, for, far from losing the piety and the holy affections which should accompany the thoughts of Christ's sufferings, a deeper Scriptural knowledge of what they were gives seriousness to our spirits, and makes Him more prominent in our thoughts, emptying, us of self. What we have to seek is that everything our mind is engaged in should be filled with Christ, or rather the fulness of the truth of Christ be that in which our minds are engaged. All other things are thus judged, received as belonging to Him, or we are freed from them. This enlarges and sanctifies the mind, for, indeed, He fills all things. We lose our-selves thus even in Him, and there is very real enlargement of heart. If we have peace and a single eye, Scripture does thus feel the soul; sets before it a scene that embraces all things, according to the divine view of all things; gives a large, divine view of things in contrast with, and to the exclusion of a fleshy narrow one, of which self and the worldly mind, and its narrow and confined interests and apprehensions, are always more or less the centre; and, moreover, because scripture is the word of God, this gives submission and certainty to the mind, and clearness of judgment as to the walk.

I avow, I could not tic myself to any of the ancients, nor own their authority in any way. I may learn from them; Ί would, I trust, gladly from any one, and own, thankfully, what was given them of God. I see in Luther an energy of faith, for which millions of souls ought to be thankful to God—and I can certainly say I am. I may see a clearness and recognition of the authority of Scripture in Calvin, which delivered him and those he taught, yet more than Luther, from the corruptions and superstitions which have overwhelmed Christendom, and through it the minds even of most saints. But present these to me as a standard of truth—I reject them with indignation. They were not inspired. Their teachings are not the word of God. To this I hold fast tenaciously. It is the safeguard and guide of the Church and of the saints under grace at all times, and especially in these days. The gifted men I respect, when presented to me as such would become a horror to me if they are in any way substituted for, or made to complete with, the word of God.

I am not surprised if eminent servants of God, not vessels of inspiration, did not all at once cast off every trammel, in which all Christendom, save a few persecuted ones (at that time almost rooted out by persecution, but precious in God's sight) had been bound up. I thank God, heartily, for the light and courage He gave them. But no one can say they were freed from everything that had overburthened the truth. I do not see that these eminent men were so free from human views, and what governs human judgment, according to this world, when they were framing systems for the countries they belonged to, as when they were wielding truth for the deliverance of souls from error. I do not wish to dwell upon the evil which accompanied so much good—evil for which man was responsible—because I do not see that it would be edifying, but I do not wish to blind, myself where history shows me facts which ought to have their weight with my conscience. I am writing in peace, because God has delivered us through the instrumentality of these men, some of whom laid down their lives, for the gospel and their love to Christ and to souls. I have no wish to depreciate them or the work in which they were engaged—I wish I had the faith of many of them: but do not bring their doctors or their systems to me as authority. You are trenching on the authority of the word of God. Am I to believe consubstantiation? Am I to believe in baptismal regeneration? No honest man can deny that it was, generally speaking, the reformed faith, or at least the faith of the reformers, and that forgiveness of sins was obtained in it.1 I may be told, but they preached justification by faith, so that it cannot be. They did preach justification by faith for the deliverance of souls, and taught baptismal regeneration when establishing a system, and tortured themselves to reconcile both. The evangelical party among the reformed have, at the present day, cast baptismal regeneration off, as freer in their ecclesiastical habits. The stricter Lutherans, at least confessional Lutherans, torture themselves to this day to reconcile both. In England every one knows where we are as to it.

But to refer to the points which engage me at this moment: it is remarkable enough that the term, "righteousness of God," is not found in Luther's New Testament—the most unfaithful translation I know. He always says the righteousness which is valid before God—die Gerechtigkeit die vor Gott gilt. Calvin is quoted as an authority to show that Christ's living sufferings went to make up righteousness by atonement; that His life, as well as His death, were needed to complete our righteousness. But if I take his doctrine, I cannot stop here; I must believe that his suffering the torment of hell (dreadful thought!) was needed too. These are his words: "Nor indeed is it right that the descent into hell should be omitted, in which was what is of no little moment for the effecting of redemption . . . . Nothing was done if Christ had departed by only a corporal death; but it was, at the same time of consequence (worth while) that He should feel the severity of divine punishment whence also it was proper that He should struggle hand to hand with the powers of hell and the horror of eternal death. We have lately cited from the prophet, that the chastisement of our peace was put on him; that He was smitten of the Father for our crimes; bruised for our infirmities; by which he signifies, put in the place of surety for the wicked; and therefore he was bound, like the guilty, to pay and satisfy all the penalties which were to be exacted from them." Am I to adopt Calvin's view in this, of what made out a believer's righteousness; or is it true that by one offering He has perfected for ever them which are sanctified? But it is alleged, I am to receive his doctrine as to the vicarious merit of His living sufferings. Here are Calvin's words: Furthermore, as a curse, because of guilt, awaited us at the heavenly tribunal of God, in the first place is related condemnation before Pontius Pilate, President of Judaea: that we may know that the penalty to which we are liable was inflicted on the just. We could not escape the horrible judgment of God. That Christ might snatch us thence, he supported being condemned before a mortal man; yea, a wicked and profane one. Nor is it merely to secure credibility to his history that the name of the perfect is expressed, but that we may learn what Esaias teaches, " the chastisement of our peace was upon him, by his bruises we have been healed"—previously, this made hell necessary, not scourging by an unjust judge—which is right? I must confess that such a statement, as to the sufferings of Christ, is very far indeed from carrying any moral weight to my spirit—our deserving God's wrath met in any way by his standing before a human judge. Does this, in any sort of way meet or correspond to God's wrath against sin? And when it is said that with His stripes we are healed, does any person taught of God, for a moment suppose that this refers to a bodily scourging by the soldiers of Pilate, or Pilate himself, precious as this may be in our eyes I avow, while fearing to say an irreverent word, while touching on such a subject, such interpretation is (to my judgment, and I am persuaded to every rightly taught mind) in the highest degree revolting, whether we think of the true character of Christ's sufferings, or of the true deserts of sin.

Witsius states it more simply and less offensively, yet as a system of doctrine more strongly. " Still more specially do Esaias liii. 5, and 1 Pet. ii. 24, assert that our healing is due to the scourging of Christ, as a part of His sufferings, when they say, by His bruises we are healed. For by that dreadful scourging, by which the whole body of the Lord Jesus was disfigured, as by one bruise, joined with other sufferings, He has merited for us, that we should be free from the buffetings of Satan, and the rod of divine burning wrath," . . . . . . . He adds, that "besides healing by example, there remains in the scourging of Christ a demonstration of the righteousness of God."

You have now, reader, the statements which are re lied on to prove that Christ's living sufferings were vicarious and atoning. The proof drawn from Calvin and Witsius is, that "with His stripes we are healed!" refers to His scourging by Pontius Pilate and that He was judged before a tribunal of man to meet our being arraigned as guilty before God. I do not feel that this requires an answer with any sober Christian. The word stripes does not even mean scourging, but the lividness left by blows. Such teaching is simply deplorable. A passage of Isaiah is quoted, "Surely he bath borne our griefs and carried our sorrows," quoted in Matt. viii. 17, " And he cast out the spirits with his word, and healed all that were sick: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities and bare our sicknesses." Now I believe that in the sympathetic exercise of His power in love Christ never remedied an ill that He did not bear it on His spirit. But this is not atonement. That atonement may be righteously necessary, that He might sympathize with sinners, in respect of what was the fruit of sin, I can well understand; but bearing on the heart in sympathy is quite another thing from atonement. To apply the principle of atonement here is simple nonsense. Was Christ sick in our place when Fie made atonement en the cross? He did suffer wrath and bore our sin so as to come under it. But in these healings He was exercising power. He healed, it is true, not indifferently; He entered into our sorrows when He relieved us. Thus the passage is as precious as it is intelligible, but the only act referred to is His healing by His power. What did that atone for? Was healing vicarious to make up for our not healing? Will it be said, for our want of health? But then He should have suffered the consequence of it Himself. What was healing an atonement for? Nay, infirmity and sickness were not to be atoned for. It needed what the compassionate Lord accomplished—healing. Το say that His healings, showing that He bore our sicknesses, means that healing was vicarious, has no kind of sense. The truth, moreover, is that the word is not at all that which is used for bearing sin as a burden imputed. Nor would the Spirit here accept the LXX. translation, which has έμαρτΙα φέρει—beαrs our sins. It is the word employed in Rom. xv. 1: "We that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak and not to please ourselves." Was this atoning? The quotation of such passages shews only the extreme poverty of scriptural intelligence to be borne with when produced in the first dawn of light or held in systematic and traditional piety; but when reproduced as pretending to the dogmatic maintenance of truth, is as poor as it is unfounded. "The miracles themselves were the manifestation of His sin-bearing work and character." This language shows the real character of the statement and the force of what I have said. If sin be borne before God, man must suffer; but was the exercising power in love bearing sin? It is not said in Matthew's explanation, He bore sin but took our infirmities, which are not sin, and bore our sicknesses. Wrath of God is due to sin, if it be borne; healing the sick is not bearing the wrath of God. What Matthew says may be a proof of Christ's entering in the fullest way into the sorrows of those who are healed; I believe it is. But this doctrine would destroy all the gracious, sorrowing sympathies of Christ in love: they are but bearing wrath upon Himself. The 53rd of Isaiah is the recognition by the converted Jew, in the latter day, of the way they had treated Christ, which we, of course, anticipate, but is literally applicable to the Jew. It looks at all Christ's course and appearance in the flesh, His sorrows and the way He was received. He was despised and they esteemed Him not. He bore Israel's griefs and carried their sorrows, but besides that, He was wounded for their transgressions. Was that healing the sick? The Lord laid the inquity of them all upon Him, so He was cut off out of the land of the living; for the transgression of my people was He stricken. This remark is connected with His death. "It pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when he shall make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed." Because he bath poured out his soul unto death, and he was numbered with the transgressors, and he bare the sin of many," The chapter speaks of His sorrows, and in doing this goes to their full extent and speaks of His being cut off for sin, and connects His death with this bearing of sin in the most explicit way. This is not saying that all His sorrows were sin-bearing. To say that His healing the sick was His own being wounded for our transgressions, is introducing confusion into all truth and neutralising the value of Christ's death.. Besides, "The Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all." On whom? On Christ, Jehovah's servant. But then He was the Christ before it was laid on Him. Further, "when thou shalt make His soul an offering for sin." Why when, if it was always? Besides, who offered himself through the eternal Spirit without spot to God! The divine person in heaven? Clearly not. If Christ was always the sin-bearer, He did not offer Himself through the eternal Spirit to God, He was always by position under sin. The free love of Christ—man—in offering Himself is entirely set aside. This is a very important point. The 53rd of Isaiah gives the general picture of the sorrows of Christ, so opposite to the unbelieving nation's estimate, and pursues them up to that great truth that He was numbered with transgressors and bare the sins of many.

The statement as regards Dr. Owen is a mis-statement. It is said, that he shows that Christ's strong crying and tears which He offered in the days of His flesh were concomitants of his sacrifice," and in his Exposition of the Hebrews he enters fully into this, spewing that "the days of his flesh" means his life on earth, though specially consummated in Gethsemane. These life-time prayers he calls sacerdotal prayers. He quotes the psalms already quoted in proof of his averment, and shows that thus it was with Him: "not for a few days, or a short season only, but during his whole course in this world." I do not agree with Dr. Owen in many things on this point, but it is here stated that his life-time prayers were sacerdotal prayers. And that it was thus with Him during his whole course in this world. Now, Dr. Owen states, ''There was no time wherein he was not, as to his human nature, the king, priest, and prophet of his church;" but, "as to his priestly office, he neither did nor could enter upon the exercise and discharge of it, until the end of his prophetical ministry." He speaks of unction in incarnation, declarative unction at baptism. Then, thirdly, to both these there succeeded an especial dedication to the actual performance of the duties of this office; and this was his own act which he had power for from God. This himself expresses. (John xvii. 19.) . . . In that prayer therefore of our Saviour (John xvii.) do I place the beginning and entrance of the exercise of His priestly office." Not only so: where Dr. Owen states that from His cradle to His grave He bare all the infirmities of our nature, &c., he adds, as to His sacerdotal prayers, "But yet respect is not had here unto this whole space of time." That is, he declares exactly the contrary of what he is made to state. Whoever reads the Thirty-first Exercitation may easily see that the whole doctrine of Dr. Owen is opposed to what is stated. "His oblation was at the same time and in the same action with His blood shedding." His entering into the holy place "was consequential to that offering of Himself whereby He made atonement for us." "His obtaining eternal redemption for us was by the sacrifice of Himself in His death. For redemption was by price and exchange. And the Lord paid no other price for sin and sinners but His own blood. (1 Peter i. 18, 19.)" As regards 1 Peter ii. 24, it is alleged that its true meaning is that Christ bore our sins up to the tree—not on it. He carried our sins during the whole of His humbled state. This is only want of acquaintance with the use of the expression; and the passage is only an additional proof of matter. what I Αναφέρεειν ἐπὶ τό feel to be έ τ important ό is a sacrificial for our expression, souls in this signifying the proper offering up of the victim on the altar. Peter here compares Christ to a victim laid on the altar as our sin offering with our sins upon it. The reader has only to consult Gen. viii. 20 or Lev iii. 5, 11, 16 and iv. 10, 19, 26, 31, Where he will find the formula of άναφέρω έπὶ τό exactly what there is in Peter used for hala and katar in Hebrew; that is, the positive offering lip on the altar as a sacrifice—the causing it to ascend to God or burning it. The words do not mean at all what they are stated to mean. The cross was as the altar where the victim was consumed by the fire of the proving and just judgment of God about sin and all was a sweet savour, though also for sin.

In result, this doctrine of an expiatory sin-bearing life (I will touch on the righteousness farther on) is built on no scripture ground. It sets aside the declaration that, without shedding of blood there is no remission. It denies the offering up of Christ by Himself, when a man, to be a sacrifice, a most valid truth—for He is it all His life. It perverts, in the most shocking way, such passages as, "with his stripes we are healed," and casts, at once, both Christ's sufferings under divine wrath, as the wages of sin, and His living sympathies, into the shade, by confounding them together; making death and blood-shedding to be unessential to the first, and turning the latter into sufferings for sin under God's hand. And see the fruits. "If Paul could say, 'I die daily,' how much more Christ. His life was a daily dying. He was always 'delivered unto death.'" Was Paul suffering for sin, then, in so dying, and in an expiatory way? What an absolute proof of entire confusion of mind, as to the very nature of these things, is here displayed! We are told a whole undivided life is our expiation. Mark that, reader!—life an expiation. I ask, if such a statement be not in opposition to the universal testimony of the word of God. "For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls; for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul." S ο that "without shedding of blood there is no remission." It separates redemption from expiation, or gives redemption without blood. No sacrifice is needed for expiation. And what is death when it comes, but the consummation of a life the same in legal character as itself? He was born "under the law;" He lived "under the law;" He died "under the law." Is, then, one keeping the law in life, so as to be in the perfectness of divine favour, the same thing as being under the curse of the law, because it had been broken? But it will be replied to me, but we say, that He was under that during the whole course of his life. Yes, but scripture says quite the contrary; it declares that Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us, as it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree. I admit fully an obedience running through life, always perfect, and unto death, when it was consummated; I admit that Christ was in death perfectly agreeable to His Father. The question is not there, but in this—what expiates sin? Is wrath, and the curse, and the cup the Lord had to drink on the cross, the same as His life?

Reader, the word declares that the wages of sin is death; and Christ died to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. If the corn of wheat had not fallen into the ground and died, it had remained alone. He was once offered to bear the sins of many. We are redeemed by the precious blood of Christ. Where were we without redemption? And this is forgiveness. Where would you be without that? He hath once suffered for sins, being put to death in the flesh. If death be not written on the old man, you must be judged for its deeds. But it is only in Christ's dying it is so. "Now, once in the end of the world, he has appeared to put away sin, by the sacrifice of himself."

One passage I would yet desire to refer to. God "has made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin." We knew no sin? Does he speak of the eternal Son before His incarnation? Clearly not. That would say nothing. It was Christ incarnate in this world. It was when by His path through this world in which His sinlessness was put to the test, it could be said He knew no sin, then it was He was made sin. God did not make the Eternal Son sin in His becoming a man, in the Word being made flesh. It would be hard to say which would be worst, the absurdity or the evil of such an assertion. If not, it was when Christ had been fully tested, and in result it could be said He knew no sin, then He was made sin. It is alleged that " during His life He was made sin for us." When? And, remark, being made sin is clearly as an offering.

It is asked, In what sense and for what purpose was He made under the law, if from His very birth He were not the very Substitute on whom our sins were laid? Scripture will answer. "He was made under the law that he might redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons." Besides, he magnified the law and made it honourable; a matter, not without its moral importance. It was of moment to honour the law, the measure of God's requirement from His creature, at the moment he was going to take him entirely from under it, to deliver him from it. But this touches on the ground of righteousness, which I reserve for another paper.  



1) It may be alleged this is not the case in Scotland, but their confession was a hundred and thirty years after the Reformation—and even there it is really taught as to the elect. "Grace and salvation are not so inseparably annexed," they say, "that all that are baptized are undoubtedly regenerate;" but this is to save election. They say, "The efficacy of baptism is not tied to that moment of time wherein it is administered; yet, notwithstanding, by the right use of this ordinance, the grace promised is not only offered, but really exhibited and conferred by the Holy Ghost; to such, whether of age or infants, as that grace belongeth unto, according to the counsels of God's own will, in His appointed time." So that, according to this teaching, by the right use of this ordinance, the grace promised is conferred by the Holy Ghost in God's appointed time. Yet this is the efficacy of baptism. The grace promised is not conferred in baptism; yet, by the right use of this ordinance in which it is not conferred, it is conferred at some other time by the Holy Ghost. And yet it is the efficacy of baptism. This is a singular effort to reconcile the truth felt as to vital partaking of the divine nature, and tradition as to ordinances.

Here is the Catechism of Calvin, "Baptism is to us as an entrance into the Church of God; for it testifies to us that God, whereas we were strangers to Him (estrangiers de luy), receives us for his servants. The signification of baptism has two parts; for the Lord represents to us in it the remission of our sins, and, besides, our regeneration or spiritual renewal. Not that the water is the washing of our souls, for that belongs to the blood of Christ only, but by the sacrament that is signified to us. The water is in such sort figure that the truth (reality) is found with it; for God promises nothing to us in vain: wherefore it is certain that in baptism the remission of sins is offered to us and we receive it. This grace is not accomplished indifferently in all; for many destroy it by their perversity. Nevertheless, this does not hinder the sacrament having such a nature, although it is the faithful only who experience its efficacy. This grace is applied to us in baptism, inasmuch as we are then clothed with Jesus Christ, and receive then his Sprit, provided we do not render ourselves unworthy of the promises which are then given to us." An explanation, though happily less precise than the Westminster Scottish, equally unintelligible to me, I avow. We receive His spirit, provided we do not render ourselves unworthy of the promises given in it. Render ourselves when? Do we then receive it or not?

The catechism of Heidelberg, of general use among the Reformers says, "Why does the Holy Sprit call baptism the washing of regeneration and the cleansing of sins? To teach us not only that as the filth of the body is cleansed by the water, so our sins are effaced by the blood and by the Spirit of Christ; but much more to assure us by this sign and by this divine pledge that we are not less interiorly purged of our sins than we are washed outwardly with the visible water."

I need hardly cite less important witnesses of what I allege. The lesser Catechism of Luther thus states it:

"What does baptism exhibit (praestat) or confer? It works the forgiveness of sins, frees from death and from the devil, and gives eternal blessedness to all and every who believe what the words and divine promises promise.

How can water effect so great things?

Water certainly does not effect such great things, but the Word of God which is in and with the water, and faith which believes in the Word of God added to the water; because water without the Word of God is simply water, and is not baptism; but the Word of God being added, it is baptism that is the saving water of grace and life, and the layer of regeneration in the Holy Ghost. As Paul says in Titus iii. (quoted)." What this faith is I may cite from the greater Catechism, which is a violent defence of his views. "These leaders of the blind (who said faith alone saved and that externals were of no avail) will not see that faith must necessarily have something which it may believe, that is, on which it rests, and supported by which it endures. Thus now faith clings to the water (aquae adhaeret) and believes that it is baptism in which pure blessedness and life is, not by virtue of the water (as has been abundantly said), but through this, that baptism is united with and confirmed by the Word and the divine ordinance, and ennobled by His name." He founds it all in "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved."

The Dutch services teach the doctrine of regeneration by baptism as clearly as possible. See the second point in the address at the beginning of the formulary and the thanksgiving at the end. It is asserted in these places without any question or condition.

Calvin is far less positive in his Institutions, with a great deal that is confused, and in my judgment erroneous as to the identity' of the baptism and ministry of John with that of the Apostles. He says that the knowledge and certainty of purging and regeneration are given in it. Purification is promised by baptism, but none other than that which is by the blood of Christ, which is figured by water by reason of its power to cleanse. But for sins committed afterwards, we are to look back to the certainty given us in baptism, which is not only for past sins, for the purity of Christ is offered to us. That always flourishes; is undone (opprimitur) by no spots. He says, "Therefore it is thus to be judged that in whatever time we may be baptized, we are washed and purged once for our whole life," and hence, if we fail, we are to recall our baptism. We know how earnestly Luther preached justification by faith—how Calvin taught it—how English martyrs laid down their lives for it—yet all in their Catechisms taught that forgiveness was received by baptism, so that men were to look back to it, if they fell afterwards. I had often remarked the contradiction in the two aspects of the Reformation in England; so that I could not understand how a man could sign his acceptance of both. If he believed the articles, he denied the Prayer-book which he usually signed (this was the evangelical position); if he believed the Prayer-book, he denied the articles or signed them with a reserve; he had his own explanation, as the other had for the Catechism and baptismal service. What I now notice it for is, that this remark applies to the whole Reformation. The preachers of truth proclaim justification by faith. The same men, when they form national Christianity, teach it to be identified with ordinances. The phenomenon attaches itself to the whole circle of the Reformation. The more the formative side is clung to, the more they approach Rome in giving life and salvation by ordinances. The mere they seek souls in grace, the more they depart from it. I am satisfied that a great deal of this arose from confounding the Church as the body of Christ, and the house formed on earth with the responsibilities of the Church of God attached to it, but having quite a different aspect than that of the body of Christ. Then baptism was made to be incorporation in the body of Christ, which the Scripture never seeks at all of its being,—on the contrary, declares that by one Spirit we are baptized into one body: a baptism which is never for a moment confounded with that of water. On these points, the Reformers clearly have n Scripture to warrant their statements. Nor are they alone in this. The language of the English Baptismal Service and Catechism is too plain to need comment. " We yield thee hearty thanks, most merciful Father, that it hath pleased thee to regenerate this infant with thy Holy Spirit, to receive him for thine own child by adoption, and to incorporate him into thy holy Church." "We call upon thee for this infant that he, coming to thy baptism, may receive remission of his sin by spiritual regeneration." And the Catechism, "My godfathers and godmothers in my baptism, wherein I was made a member of Christ, a child of God, and an inheritor of the kingdom of heaven." And in the service for confirmation, "hast vouchsafed to regenerate these thy servants by water and the Holy Ghost, and hast given , unto them forgiveness of all their sins." On this last point, I will quote a passage of the Homilies to show the deliberate view of doctrine as to a sacrament, which governed the minds of the Reformers in England. "And as for the number of them, if they should be considered according to the exact signification of a sacrament, namely, for the visible sign expressly commanded in the New Testament, whereunto is annexed the promise of free forgiveness of our sin; and of our holiness and joining in Christ, there be but two, namely, baptism and the supper of the Lord." "For although absolution hath the promise of forgiveness of sin; yet, by the express word of the New Testament, it hath not this promise annexed and tied to the visible sign, which is imposition of hands. And though the ordering of ministers hath his visible sign and promise, yet it lacks the promise of remission of sin," &c. This is precise enough, Nothing is a sacrament which has not remission of sin annexed and tied to the visible sign. I quote all these, not for the purpose of controversy, but of demonstrating what the doctrine of the teachers of the Reformation was as to sacraments, and particularly baptism. It does not weaken my value for their work, but it does affect their authority as a standard of doctrine.