| || |The Berean Expositor Volume 41 - Page 216 of 246 Index | Zoom | |
and through (dia) HIM, and to or for (eis) HIM, are all things, to WHOM (Who, God or
Lord?) be glory unto the ages. Amen" (Rom. 11: 33-36).
This doxology, being written after I Cor. 8:, sufficiently disposes of any attempt to
see in the language of the Apostle an intended distinction in essence between the one God
Who is the Father, and the one Lord Who is Jesus Christ, but rather the distribution of
function which is in perfect harmony with the economical and dispensational limitation
of the Trinity, and the mediatorial office of the Son.
In an earlier study we alluded to the reading of John 1: 18 "The only begotten God".
The change from "Son" to "God" in the original form of writing is but the change of one
letter. This reading is elaborately set forth by Tregelles, and he thinks it such that Arius,
though `opposed to the dogma taught', upholds the reading monogenes theos `Only
begotten God'. With this reading of John 1: 18 we must align that of Isa. 43: 10:
"Before Me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after Me."
Before the Incarnation was "The Word", "The Image of the invisible God", "The
Form of God"; at the Incarnation when the Word was made flesh, He became "The only
begotten God" or "God manifest in the flesh". There is practical unanimity among
textual critics that the words of I John 5: 7, 8 "In heaven, the Father, the Word and the
Holy Ghost and these three are one, and there are three that bear witness on earth",
should be omitted though Bishop Middleton and Gaussen in his Theopneustia were in
favour of the retention. We will let their reasons be heard even though we may not agree
with their conclusions. Bishop Middleton's main contention is that if we omit the words
of verse 7, then the presence of the article at the close of verse 8 is inexplicable. The
original reads eis to hen.
"If the seventh verse had not been spurious, nothing could have been plainer than to
hen of verse 8, referred to hen (one) of verse 7: as the case now stands I do not perceive
the force or meaning of the article."
Bishop Middleton then devotes several pages in establishing his contention that the
closing words of verse 8 are ungrammatical and without precedent IF verse 7 be
removed. Gaussen draws attention to another grammatical difficulty. The word `three'
in the Greek is masculine, while the words spirit, water and blood to which it relates, are
all neuter. If the seventh verse remains, this could be explained by what is called
`attraction' but it becomes inexplicable when we deprive it of the contested words.
Middleton concludes by saying:
"I am not ignorant, that in the rejection of the controverted passage, learned and good
men are now, for the most part, agreed . . . . . the objection, however, which has given
rise to this discussion, I could not consistently with my plan suppress."
The rejected passage reads:
"In heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And
there are three that bear witness in earth."