Page:Messianic Prophecies - Delitzsch - 1880.djvu/22

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FIRST PART.

FOUNDATION.


CHAPTER I.

Definition and Name of the Biblical Prophets.

§ I.

Intercourse of Man with God.

If there is really a difference between the absolute God, and all other rational created beings, then the history of finite and personal beings can have no other true and ultimate goal than an ever deeper entrance into a living fellowship with God. But a continuance in such fellowship without actual intercourse between God and his intelligent creatures is inconceivable. It must therefore be possible, and can be proved as actual, that God and men can speak with, and work upon one another. That such a divinely ordained interchange actually exists necessarily follows from the universal impulse of men to pray, and the truth and reality of this interchange is proved by Christian experience in prayer, by the testimony of the Spirit which seals the saving truth to those who submit themselves to the way of God's grace, and by the admonishing, warning, comforting voices which we experience.

Rem. I. Compare Riehm, Messianische Weissagung, Gotha 1875, p- 23 etc. The common word for answer to prayer, as well as for revelation to the prophets is ה(Symbol missingHebrew characters) e. g. Jerem. XXXIII, 3.

Rem. 2. The answers to prayer and the cognitions which break through our natural series of conceptions, as well as divine impulses, intimations, and consolations belong in their final analysis to the realm of the miraculous, for the essential characteristic of the miraculous is not in its being contrary to nature, but in the interference of the power of freedom in the natural connection of cause and effect. The opponents of the miraculous are consequently also opponents of the efficacy of prayer.