1. a) Human feelings, actions, and parts are ascribed to God, not that they are really in Him, but because such effects proceed from Him as are like those that flow from such things in humans.
And the Lord said, My spirit shall not always strive with man... And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. (Genesis 6:3,6)
And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded. And the Lord said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do. Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech. So the Lord scattered them abroad from thence... (Genesis 11:5-8)
And the Lord went his way, as soon as he had left communing with Abraham... (Genesis 18:33)
And it shall come to pass, while my glory passeth by, that I will put thee in a clift of the rock, and will cover thee with my hand while I pass by: And I will take away mine hand, and thou shalt see my back parts: but my face shall not be seen. (Exodus 33:22,23)
Moab is my washpot; over Edom will I cast out my shoe... (Psalm 60:8)
Then the Lord awaked as one out of sleep, and like a mighty man that shouteth by reason of wine. And he smote his enemies... (Psalm 78:65,66)
Therefore saith the Lord, the Lord of hosts, the mighty One of Israel, Ah, I will ease me of mine adversaries, and avenge me of mine enemies. (Isaiah 1:24)
And now, because ye have done all these words, saith the Lord, and I spake unto you, rising up early and speaking, but ye heard not; and I called you, but ye answered not. (Jeremiah 7:13)
But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God. (Hebrews 10:12)
For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. (Hebrews 12:6)
...the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord... (James 5:4)
And thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no. (Deuteronomy 8:2)
...all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do. (Hebrews 4:13)
...And the hand of the Lord was with him. (Luke 1:66)
...Lord, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us. (Psalm 4:6)
...So the Lord turned from the fierceness of his anger... (Joshua 7:26)
Then I will walk contrary unto you also in fury; and I, even I, will chastise you seven times for your sins. (Leviticus 26:28)
(b) God is frequently spoken of as dealing with humans as they deal with Him.
Therefore the children of Israel could not stand before their enemies, but turned their backs before their enemies, because they were accursed: neither will I be with you any more, except ye destroy the accursed from among you. (Joshua 7:12)
And the anger of the Lord was hot against Israel; and he said, Because that this people hath transgressed my covenant which I commanded their fathers, and have not hearkened unto my voice; I also will not henceforth drive out any from before them of the nations which Joshua left when he died. (Judges 2:20, 21)
With the merciful thou wilt shew thyself merciful, and with the upright man thou wilt shew thyself upright. With the pure thou wilt show thyself pure; and with the froward thou wilt shew thyself unsavoury. (2 Samuel 22:26, 27)
And he went out to meet Asa, and said unto him, Hear ye me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin; The Lord is with you, while ye be with him; and if ye seek him, he will be found of you; but if ye forsake him, he will forsake you. (2 Chronicles 15:2)
For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.... So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses. (Matthew 6:15,16; 18:35)
Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. (John 15:14)
2. Abstract and inanimate things are frequently PERSONIFIED, e.g. -- Ears are attributed to the heavens, the earth, death, and destruction; hands to the deep; eyes to the sea and the mountains; a voice to the deep, wisdom, and understanding; a will to the flesh; witnessing to an altar, a song, a stone, blood, and water; speaking to the ear, eye, foot, days, years, blood, law, righteousness, and blood of sprinkling; knowing, rejoicing, rising and going down to the sun; being roused from sleep to the sword and arm of Jehovah; skipping and leaping to mountains and hills; crying out to the heart and flesh, wisdom and understanding; seeing and preaching to the Scripture; judging to the word; teaching to grace, the heaven, and the earth; leading and guiding to light, truth, and the commandments; dominion and enmity to death; mastery to sin; comforting to a rod and staff; carrying message to anger, fear, mercy, light, and truth; and every Christian virtue to charity or love.
3. Opposite statements are to be carefully compared.
Genesis 2:2 cf. John 5:16,17
And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made....And therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, and sought to slay him, because he had done these things on the sabbath day. But Jesus answered them, My father worketh hitherto, and I work.
Exodus 24:9,10 cf. John 1:18
Then went up Moses, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel: And they saw the God of Israel: and there was under his feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were the body of heaven in his clearness....No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.
1 Samuel 15:11 & 29
It repenteth me that I have set up Saul to be king....And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor repent: for he is not a man, that he should repent.
1 Kings 22:20 cf. Isaiah 40:13,14
And the Lord said, who shall persuade Ahab, that he may go up and fall at Ramoth-gilead? And one said on this manner, and another said on that manner....Who hath directed the spirit of the Lord, or being his counsellor hath taught him? With whom took he counsel, and who instructed him, and taught him in the path of judgment, and taught him knowledge, and shewed to him the way of understanding?
Psalm 51:10 cf. Ezekiel 18:31
Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me....Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel?
Proverbs 6:1,2 cf. Philemon 18,19
My son, if thou be surety for thy friend, if thou hast stricken thy hand with a stranger, Thou are snared with the words of thy mouth....If he hath wronged thee, or oweth thee aught, put that on mine account; I Paul have written it with mine own hand, I will repay it: albeit I do not say to thee how thou owest unto me even thine own self besides.
Proverbs 26:4 & 5
Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him...Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit.
Ezekiel 18:32 cf. Romans 9:18
For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord God: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye...Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.
Matthew 6:34 cf. 1 Timothy 5:8
Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof....But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.
Matthew 7:7, 8 cf. John 8:21
Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you...Then said Jesus again unto them, I go my way, and ye shall seek me, and shall die in your sins: whither I go, ye cannot come.
Matthew 10:37 cf. Luke 14:26 & Ephesians 5:29
He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me...If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple...For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church.
Matthew 12:30 cf. Mark 9:40
He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad...For he that is not against us is on our part.
Matthew 20:29 cf. Mark 10:46 & Luke 18:35
And as they departed from Jericho, a great multitude followed him...And as they came to Jericho: and as he went out of Jericho with his disciples and a great number of people, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the highway side begging...And it came to pass, that as he was come nigh unto Jericho, a certain blind man sat by the way side begging.
Matthew 26:52 cf. Luke 22:36
Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword...Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip; and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.
Luke 1:33 cf. 1 Corinthians 15:24
And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end...Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.
Luke 22:36 cf. 2 Corinthians 10:4
Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip; and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one...(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds.)
Luke 16:8 cf. Mark 10:19
And the lord commended the unjust steward, because he had done wisely: for the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light...Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honour thy father and mother.
Luke 18:1 cf. John 9:31
And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint...Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth.
John 5:23; 12:47; 10:30 & 14:28
That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him...And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world...I and my Father are one...Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.
Acts 16:3 cf. Galatians 5:2
Him would Paul have to go forth with him, and took and circumcised him because of the Jews which where in those quarters: for they knew all that his father was a Greek...Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing.
Romans 3:28 cf. James 2:24
Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law...Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.
Colossians 2:20 cf. 1 Peter 2:13
Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances... Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme...
4. General statements are frequently to be limited; that is, they may have exceptions.
Proverbs 3:16; 9:11; 10:27; 11:14,15; 12:28; 16:7,10; 17:6; 18:22; 22:6,29
Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour...For by me thy days shall be multiplied, and the years of thy life shall be increased...The fear of the Lord prolongeth days: but the years of the wicked shall be shortened...Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety. He that is surety for a stranger shall smart for it: and he that hateth suretyship is sure...In the way or righteousness is life; and in the pathway thereof there is no death...When a man's ways please the Lord, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him...A divine sentence is in the lips of the king: his mouth transgresseth not in judgment...Children's children are the crown of old men; and the glory of children are their fathers.
And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
John 3:22; 11:9
After these things came Jesus and his disciples into the land of Judaea; and there he tarried with them, and baptized...Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world.
Romans 3:10,11; 9:30
As it is written, there is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.
1 Corinthians 7:32,33
But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord. But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife.
5. Positive statements are frequently to be understood comparatively; that is, "this" also really means "that," or one thing is compared or contrasted to another.
So now it was not you that sent me hither, but God: and he hath made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house, and a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt.
And Moses said, This shall be, when the Lord shall give you in the evening flesh to eat, and in the morning bread to the full; for that the Lord heareth your murmurings which ye murmur against him: and what are we? your murmurings are not against us, but against the Lord.
1 Samuel 8:7
And the Lord said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them.
Receive my instruction, and not silver; and knowledge rather than choice gold.
For I spake not unto your fathers, nor commanded them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt offerings or sacrifices: But this thing commanded I them, saying, Obey my voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be my people: and walk ye in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well unto you.
And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the Lord your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.
For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.
Matthew 9:14; 11:18,19; 15:24; 23:2
Then came to him the disciples of John, saying, Why do we and the Pharisees fast oft, but thy disciples fast not?...For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, He hath a devil. The Son of man came eating and drinking, and they say, Behold a man gluttonous, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners. But wisdom is justified of her children...And he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel...Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat.
Then said he also to him that bade him, When thou makest a dinner or a supper, call not thy friends, nor thy brethren, neither thy kinsmen, nor thy rich neighbours; lest they also bid thee again, and a recompence be made thee.
John 5:22,30; 6:27
For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son...I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.
1 Corinthians 1:17; 3:7
For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect...So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.
Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
1 Timothy 1:9; 6:8
Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers...
6. General reasonings, of various kinds, are sometimes employed.
E.g., From the nature, attributes, and actions of God, the nature and social relations of Man, for analogy, contrast, cause and effect, the greater and the less, the less and the greater, the truthfulness of the senses, self consciousness, the truths of testimony, the works of nature and providence, from experience, etc.
7. The language of the messenger frequently glides into that of the sender.
Genesis 16:10; 18:14
And the angel of the Lord said unto her, I will multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude...Is anything too hard for the Lord? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.
Exodus 7:16,17; 15:25,26
And thou shalt say unto him, The Lord God of the Hebrews hath sent me unto thee, saying, Let my people go, that they may serve me in the wilderness: and, behold, hitherto thou wouldest not hear. Thus saith the Lord, In this thou shalt know that I am the Lord: behold, I will smite with the rod that is in mine hand upon the waters which are in the river, and they shall be turned to blood.
Deuteronomy 11:13-15; 29:2-6; 31:22,23
And it shall come to pass, if ye shall hearken diligently unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the Lord your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul, That I will give you the rain of your land in his due season, the first rain and the latter rain, that thou mayest gather in thy corn, and thy wine, and thine oil. And I will send grass in thy fields for thy cattle, that thou mayest eat and be full...And Moses called unto all Israel, and said unto them, Ye have seen all that the Lord did before your eyes in the land of Egypt unto Pharaoh, and unto all his servants, and unto all his land; The great temptations which thine eyes have seen, the signs, and those great miracles: Yet the Lord hath not given you an heart to perceive, and eyes to see, and ears to hear, unto this day. And I have led you forty years in the wilderness: your clothes are not waxen old upon you, and thy shoe is not waxen old upon thy foot. Ye have not eaten bread, neither have ye drunk wine or strong drink: that ye might know that I am the Lord your God.
Isaiah 10:4,7,25,26; 50:3,4
Without me they shall bow down under the prisoners, and they shall fall under the slain. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still...Howbeit he meaneth not so, neither doth his heart think so; but it is in his heart to destroy and cut off nations not a few...For yet a very little while, and the indignation shall cease, and mine anger in their destruction. And the Lord of hosts shall stir up a scourge for him according to the slaughter of Midian at the rock of Oreb: and as his rod was upon the sea, so shall he lift it up after the manner of Egypt...I clothe the heavens with blackness, and I make sackcloth their covering. The Lord God hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: he wakeneth morning by morning, he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.
Jeremiah 4:19-27; 6:22-30; 9:1-3
My bowels, my bowels! I am pained at my very heart; my heart maketh a noise in me; I cannot hold my peace, because thou hast heard, O my sound, the sound of the trumpet, the alarm of war. Destruction upon destruction is cried; for the whole land is spoiled: suddenly are my tents spoiled, and my curtains in a moment. How long shall I see the standard, and hear the sound of the trumpet? For my people is foolish, they have not known me; they are sottish children, and they have none understanding: they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge. I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light. I beheld the mountains, and, lo, they trembled, and all the hills moved lightly. I beheld, and, lo there was no man, and all the birds of the heavens were fled. I beheld, and, lo, the fruitful place was a wilderness, and all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the Lord, and by his fierce anger. For thus hath the lord said, The whole land shall be desolate; yet will I not make a full end...Thus saith the Lord, Behold, a people cometh from the north country, and a great nation shall be raised from the sides of the earth. They shall lay hold on bow and spear; they are cruel, and have no mercy; their voice roareth like the sea; and they ride upon horses, set in array as men for war against thee, O daughter of Zion. We have heard the fame thereof: our hands wax feeble: anguish hath taken hold of us, and pain, as of a woman in travail. Go not forth into the field, nor walk by the way; for the sword of the enemy and fear is on every side. O daughter of my people, gird thee with sackcloth, and wallow thyself in ashes: make thee mourning, as for an only son, most bitter lamentation: for the spoiler shall suddenly come upon us. I have set thee for a tower and a fortress among my people, that thou mayest know and try their way. They are all grievous revolters, walking with slanders: they are brass and iron; they are all corrupters. The bellows are burned, the lead is consumed of the fire; the founder melteth in vain: for the wicked are not plucked away. Reprobate silver shall men call them, because the Lord hath rejected them...Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people! Oh that I had in the wilderness a lodging place of wayfaring men; that I might leave my people, and go from them! for they be all adulterers, an assembly of treacherous men. And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies: but they are not valiant for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know not me, saith the Lord.
For thus saith the Lord of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye. For, behold, I will shake mine hand upon them, and they shall be a spoil to their servants: and ye shall know that the Lord of hosts hath sent me. Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion: for, lo, I come, and I will dwell in the midst of thee, saith the Lord. And many nations shall be joined to the Lord in that day, and shall be my people: and I will dwell in the midst of thee, and thou shalt know that the Lord of hosts hath sent me unto thee.
8. What a servant says or does is ascribed to the master.
Again, he sent forth other servants, saying,, Tell them which are bidden, Behold I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage.
9. Persons and things are spoken of according to what they once were, or professed (or are presently thought) to be, though not really so, either formerly or at present.
1 Samuel 13:14
But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the Lord hath sought him a man after his own heart, and the Lord hath commanded him to be captain over his people, because thou hast not kept that which the Lord commanded thee.
1 Kings 13:11
Now there dwelt an old prophet in Bethel; and his sons came and told him all the works that the man of God had done that day in Bethel: the words which he had spoken unto the king, them they told also to their father.
And it came to pass the same year, in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the fourth year, and in the fifth month, that Hananiah the son of Azur the prophet, which was of Gibeon, spake unto me in the house of the Lord, in the presence of the priests and of all the people, saying...Then the prophet Jeremiah said unto the prophet Hananiah in the presence of the priests, and in the presence of all the people that stood in the house of the Lord,...Then Hananiah the prophet took the yoke from off the prophet Jeremiah's neck, and brake it.
Luke 15:24,29; 16:15; 19:22
For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found And they began to be merry...And he answering said to his father, Lo, these many years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment: and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends...And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God...And he saith unto him, Out of thine own mouth will I judge thee, thou wicked servant. Thou knewest that I was an austere man, taking up that I laid not down, and reaping that I did not sow...
And the barbarous people shewed us no little kindness: for they kindled a fire, and received us every one, because of the present rain, and because of the cold.
1 Corinthians 1:21; 2:6
For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe...Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought.
One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, The Cretians are always liars, evil beasts, slow bellies.
2 Peter 2:1
But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
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