Doctrine Respecting The Person Of Christ -- By: M. Stuart

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 007:28 (Oct 1850)
Article: Doctrine Respecting The Person Of Christ
Author: M. Stuart

Doctrine Respecting The Person Of Christ

M. Stuart

[In my exegetical and theological inquiries respecting John 1:1–18, published in the January and April Nos. of this Review, I gave promise of an appendix, in which the great question respecting the derivation or source of the New Testament Logos is discussed by Prof. Dorner, the latest and by far the ablest of recent critical writers on the history of the doctrine respecting the person of Christ, or of the human and divine nature of Christ. In the introduction to his book, his object is to show, that John derived his ideas of the Logos incarnate, i.e. of the truly divine and human nature united in one person, neither from the Old Testament, nor from the apocryphal books, nor from the Logos-doctrine of Philo. The importance of this inquiry will be quite plain to every well-informed and discerning theologian. For a long time, even from early ages, it has been customary among many writers to compare the Logos of John with Wisdom in Prov. 8.; with the same, in the apocryphal books of Jesus Sirach and the Wisdom of Solomon; and above all, with the Logos of Philo Judæus, as exhibited in his philosophical works. Now if it can be shown that none of these writings assign to Wisdom or Logos a proper and real personality, (for such is the view of Dorner, to which I yield my full and hearty assent), so it would follow, that John, who beyond a question makes his Logos a real person, did not derive his views of the nature and being of the Logos, as to his personality, from any or all of said writings.

If this can be satisfactorily shown, then does it follow, that, if the adversaries of the doctrine of God-man in the person of Christ, can prove that Prov. 8., or the apocryphal writings, or Philo, have exhibited a Logos which is really impersonal, i.e. have spoken of Wisdom and the Logos only in the way of personification, (and undoubtedly they may prove so much), still all this does not bear directly upon the assertions or developments of John in his gospel, because he has exhibited a personal Logos. The opponents in question maintain, that John’s views must be conformed to the sources whence, as they assert, he drew. Dorner has shown, that as personification merely of Wisdom or Logos belongs to all the writings named above as sources of John’s

opponents), and as John has, beyond all question, united the idea of proper personality with the designation Logos, so it is not and cannot be made out, that John does not mean something more by his...

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