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was the worship that many of the philosophers (against whom St. Paul speaks, ver. 8,) paid to angels or to demons, by sacrificing to them as carriers of intelligence betwixt God and men, pretending humility in so doing, as if God was too great to be addressed by men; and setting aside the mediatorship of Jesus Christ; who is the head both of angels and men. Such also was the worship paid by the ancient heretics, disciples of Simon and Menander, to the angels, whom they believed to be the makers and lords of this lower world. This is certain, that they whom the apostle here condemns, did not hold the head, (ver. 19,) that is, Jesus Christ, and his mediatorship: and therefore what he writes here no ways touches the catholic doctrine and practice of desiring our good angels to pray to God for us through Jesus Christ. St. Jerome (Epist. ad Algas) understands by the religion or service of angels, the Jewish religion given by angels; and supposes all that is here said, to be directed against the Jewish teachers, who sought to subject the new Christians to the observances of the Mosaic law.”
Note to the Roman Catholic Version.
The Jews, after their return from captivity, were desirous of obtaining a more familiar knowledge of angels, and to distinguish them by their functions and names ; thus they gradually acquired the habit of rendering them religious worship.
An ancient work, mentioned by St. Clement, of Alexandria, says, that the Jews worshipped angels and archangels, and even the months and the moon. Gaulmin, in his Notes to the History of Moses, c. iv, p. 301, quotes a work of Rabbi Abraham Solomon, in which is a prayer directly addressed to the archangel St. Michael.
See Dictionn. des Hérésies. Art. Angeliques.
COLOssians ii. 20.
. See Southey's Life of Wesley.
1 THESSALONIANS iii. 11.
" And our Lord Jesus Christ direct our way." “ Though God and Christ are here joined together, it is by no means a proper example of prayer to Christ; but as all power is given to Christ, with respect to his church, and he frequently appeared to Paul, and directed the course of his apostolical journeys, it was natural for him to desire to have the same direction to go where he wished himself.”
“ The Apostle, in his missionary labours, was under the immediate direction of Christ, who occasionally appeared to him for his guidance and encouragement. See Acts xxii. 17.; 2 Cor. xii. 8, 9.”.
Note to the Unitarian Version.
1 THESSALONIANS V. 17.
“ Pray without ceasing."
(MESSALIANS OR EUCHYTES.) The Messalians or Euchytes, a sect of the fourth century, imagined, according to the oriental notion, that the mind of man was inhabited by an evil de- ECO mon; they contended, that by constant prayer, and singing of hymns, the soul was enabled to expel the demon, and might then be perfectly united with the divine essence. See Epiphanius Hæres. 80. p. 1067. Theodoret. Hæret. Fabul, lib. iv.
cap. 10. p. 672.
2 THESSALONIANS I. 2.
“ God our Father.”
(UNITARIANISM.) “ It cannot but be observed, that in the usual tenor of Scripture language, God and Christ are carefully distinguished; the appellation of God being given to the Father only, exclusively of Christ, as well as of all other beings."
2 THESSALONIANS ii. 3.
(ROMAN CATHOLICS.) “ This revolt or falling off is generally understood, by the ancient fathers, of a revolt from the Roman empire, which was first to be destroyed before the coming of Antichrist. It may perhaps be under