John Wilbur

Wilbur, John. A Narrative and Exposition of the Late Proceedings of New England Yearly Meeting, With Some of its Subordinate Meetings & Their committees, in Relation to the Doctrinal Controversy Now Existing in the Society of Friends: Prefaced by a Concise View of the Church, Showing the Occasion of its Apostacy, both Under the Former and Present Dispensations, With an Appendix. Edited from Record Kept, From Time to Time, of Those Proceedings, and Interspersed With Occasional Remarks and Observations. Addressed to the Members of the Said Yearly Meeting. New York: Piercy & Reed, Printers, 1854, pages 277-325.

(All italics added by J.W. for emphasis. All words supplied in [Square Brackets] by J.W.
Page numbers from original publication by -pds in {Set Brackets.}

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J.J. Gurney (Brief Remarks, p. 8.): "For the same reason we cannot but object to the doctrine that Christ is the Anointing. Truly he is the Anointed of the Father, and the Anointer of his own people; but who on that account would think of identifying him with the Anointing? that is, with the enlightening, qualifying influence of the Holy Spirit?
"This peculiar notion is also occasionally applied amongst us, to a highly important passage in the Epistie of Paul to the Colossians, Where he speaks of the 'mystery which hath been hid from ages aad generations, but now is made manifest unto the saints,' to whom he adds, God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is 'Christ in you the hope of glory,' Col i. 26. The words ' Christ in you,' are often recited by mistake, as 'Christ' within;' and these expressions are sometimes used amongst us as a synonyme for the light of the Spirit of Christ in the heart--a view which some have imagined to be supported by the apostle's treating the whole subject as a 'mystery.' Hence it necessarily follows, that the light of the Spirit of Christ in the {p. 316}heart, is the same as Christ himself, and is represented as the hope of glory. The plain fact, however, appears to be, that the mystery of which the apostle is speaking, is that of the incarnation of the Son of God, a subject which had indeed been typically shadowed forth to the Jews, but had been totally concealed from the Gentiles; kept secret since the world began, but was n,w made known to tile saints, (1 Tim. iii. 16.) and without controversy great is the mystery of godliness. God was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received np into glory. No sooner did the Gentiles, by a living faith, accept the Saviour, who was thus preached unto them; no sooner did they receive him into their hearts, that he might rule there by his Spirit, than Christ was in them the hope of glory, Eph. iii. 17, ' that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith;' and 2 Cor. xiii 5, 'Know ye not your ownselves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?' So also John vi. 56, 'He that eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me and I in him;' John xvii. 26, 'That the love wherewith thou hast loved me, may be in them and I in them.'
"The true view of this subject, and in particular of the passage now cited from Colossians, is briefly but happily stated in the General Epistle from our last Yearly Meeting: 'As the Holy Spirit influences our hearts, and enlightens our understandings, we are brought to a lively apprehension of the character and offices of the Messiah, and Christ received by faith into the soul, and, ruling there by his Spirit, becomes our sure and only hope of glory.' Here then is a full testimony to vital, practical, inward religion, but no mystimsm. These mistakes, especially John i. 9, and Col. i. 26--28, have often been made by persons who cordially accept the Lord Jesus Christ in all his gracious offices, both as God and man.
"Thus the errors themselves have naturally enough been suffered to pass with but little notice. But with some who have seceded from us in America, they have evidently been the means of aiding that tremendous process {p. 317} in heresy, by which the Eternal Word, or Son of God, is gradually converted into a mere influence, and finally becomes nothing at all but a seed sown in the hearts of all men."

Contrast the above with

Barclay (Apology, p. ,52.): "The apostle proposeththis anointing in them, as a more certain touchstone for them to discern and try seducers by, even than, his own writings."
(pp. 138, 139.) "But we understand a spiritual, heavenly, and invisible principle, in which God, as Father, Son, and Spirit dwells; a measure of which divine and glorious life is in all men as a seed, which of its own nature draws, invites, and inclines to God; and this, some call vehiculum Dei, or the spiritual body of Christ, the flesh and blood of Christ, which came down from heaven, of which all the saints do feed, and are thereby nourished unto eternal life.
"And as this seed is received in the heart,and suffered to bring forth its natural and proper effect, Christ comes to be formed and raised, of which the Scripture makes so much mention, calling it the new man, Christ within, the hope of glory. This is that Christ within, which we are heard so much to speak and declare of, every where preaching him up, and exhorting people to believe in the light, and obey it, that they may come to know Christ in them, to deliver them from all sin.
"But by this, as we do not at all intend to equal ourselves to that holy man, the Lord Jesus Christ, who was born of the Virgin Mary, in whom all the fullness of the Godhead dwelt bodily, so neither do we destroy the reality of his present existence, as some have falsely calumniated us. For though we affirmthat Christ dwells in us, yet not immediately, but mediately, as he is in
that seed, which is in us; whereas he, to wit, the Eternal Word, which was with God, and was God, dwelt immediately in that holy man.
"We understand not this seed, light, or grace, to be an accident, as most men ignorantly do, but a real spiritual substance, which the soul of man is capable to feel and {p. 318} apprehend, from which that real, spiritual, inward birth in believers arises, called the new creature, the new man in the heart. This seems strange to carnal-minded men, because they are not acquainted with it: but we know it, and are sensible of it, by a true and certain experience.
(pp, 142, 143, 144.) "We have said before, how that a divine, spiritual, and supernatural light is in all men; how that that divine, supernatural light or seed, is vehiculum Dei; how that God and Christ dwelleth in it, and is never separated from it; also how that as it is received and closed within the heart, Christ comes to be formed and brought forth; but we are far from ever having said, that Christ is thus formed in all men, or in the wicked; for that is a great attainment, which the apostle travailed that it might be brought forth in the Galatians.
"But in regard Christ is in all men as in a seed, yea, and that he never is nor can be separate from that holy, pure seed and light which is in all men; therefore may it be said, in a larger sense, that he is in all, &c.
"And forasmuch as Christ is called that light that enlightens every man, the light of the world, therefore the light is taknn for Christ, who truly is the fountain of light, and hath his habitation in it forever.
"Thus the light of Christ is sometimes called Christ, i.e. that in which Christ is, and from which ho is never separated."

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