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Chapter II.—Why Christ’s Coming Should Be Previously Announced.

Coming then at once to the point,31033103    Hinc denique. I have to encounter the question, Whether Christ ought to have come so suddenly?31043104    As Marcion makes Him. (I answer, No.) First, because He was the Son of God His Father. For this was a point of order, that the Father should announce31053105    Profiteretur. the Son before the Son should the Father, and that the Father should testify of the Son before the Son should testify of the Father. Secondly, because, in addition to the title of Son, He was the Sent. The authority,31063106    Patrocinium. therefore, of the Sender must needs have first appeared 322in a testimony of the Sent; because none who comes in the authority of another does himself set it forth31073107    Defendit, “insist on it.” for himself on his own assertion, but rather looks out for protection from it, for first comes the support31083108    Suggestu. of him who gives him his authority. Now (Christ) will neither be acknowledged as Son if the Father never named Him, nor be believed in as the Sent One if no Sender31093109    Mandator. gave Him a commission: the Father, if any, purposely naming Him; and the Sender, if any, purposely commissioning Him. Everything will be open to suspicion which transgresses a rule. Now the primary order of all things will not allow that the Father should come after the Son in recognition, or the Sender after the Sent, or God after Christ. Nothing can take precedence of its own original in being acknowledged, nor in like manner can it in its ordering.31103110    Dispositione, “its being ordered or arranged.” Suddenly a Son, suddenly Sent, and suddenly Christ! On the contrary, I should suppose that from God nothing comes suddenly, because there is nothing which is not ordered and arranged by God. And if ordered, why not also foretold, that it may be proved to have been ordered by the prediction, and by the ordering to be divine? And indeed so great a work, which (we may be sure) required preparation,31113111    Parabatur. as being for the salvation of man, could not have been on that very account a sudden thing, because it was through faith that it was to be of avail.31123112    Per fidem profuturum. Inasmuch, then, as it had to be believed in order to be of use, so far did it require, for the securing of this faith, a preparation built upon the foundations of pro-arrangement and fore-announcement. Faith, when informed by such a process, might justly be required31133113    Indiceretur. of man by God, and by man be reposed in God; it being a duty, after that knowledge31143114    Agnitione. has made it a possibility, to believe those things which a man had learned indeed to believe from the fore-announcement.31153115    Prædicatione, “prophecy.”


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