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* That was two hours bea
saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day: for it J. P. 4739. was * about the tenth hour.
V. Æ. 26. 40 One of the two which heard John speak, and followed Bethabara. him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother.
41 He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith fore night. unto him, We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, + the Christ.
+ Or, the 42 And he brought him to Jesus. Aud when Jesus beheld him, he said, Thou art Simon the son of Jona : thou shalt be called Cephas, which is, by interpretation, I A stone 8.
Or, Peter. 43 The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee, in the road to and findeth Philip, and saith unto him, Follow me.
44 Now Philip was of Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter.
45 Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto him, We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the pro- d Gen. ii. 15. phets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.' XVI.4.. &
46 And Nathanael said unto him, Can there any good xxi. 9. Deut. thing come out of Nazareth ? Philip saith unto him, Come *
e Ps. xvi. 9, and see.
10. & 22. & · 47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and saith of our him, Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile! ix. 6. & xl. 10,
48 Nathanael said unto him, Whence knowest thou me? 53. Jer. xxiii. Jesus answered and said unto him, Before that Philip called 15. Ezek. thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee. xxxvi. 25.
49 Nathanael answered and saith unto him, Rabbi, thou Mic. vu. 20. art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel.
Mal. iii. 1. & iv. 2.
& Peter, like Nathanael, received a title, which, while it alluded to his own name, described also his future dignity, in being selected to preach the Gospel to the Gentile world. Christ had come to call the Gentiles to God, and he proves, by his address to St. Peter, that this great object of his mission was always before him. The members of the Church of Rome imagine that this name, given to St. Peter, proves that he was appointed head of the Universal Church, whose seat was to be at Rome. A solid foundation for this notion, however, cannot be laid, before some stubborn facts are removed, which are utterly inconsistent with this opinion. These are the parity among the Apostles ; --the total absence of evidence that the Church, even in that early age, submitted in any one instance to St. Peter ;-the election of St. James to the episcopal office at Jerusalem;-the manner in which St. Paul addressed St. Peter, and the uncertainty, indeed, whether St. Peter was ever at Rome, the seat of his supposed dignity. Vide Barrow's Enquiry whether St. Peter was ever at Rome. This is a posthumous work, and had not received the last correction of its author. It contains, however, a valuable collection of materials on this subject. The brief Introduction to the work, by Archbishop Tillotson, to whom Dr. Barrow, when dying, entrusted his manuscripts, also deserves attention.
J. P. 4739. 50 Jesus answered and said unto him, Because I said
V. Æ, 26. unto thee, I saw thee under the fig tree, believest thou?
To thou shalt see greater things than these.
JOHN ï. 1-12.
E. 27. Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there: Cana, in Galilee,
. For some very curious remarks on this passage, see King's Morsels of Criticism. The singular theory of the universe, and its government, proposed by this author, will interest, even when it does not convince, all who engage themselves in these studies. Mr. King rejects the usual interpretation of this passage, and, after endeavouring to prove that the prophecy of our Lord was not fulfilled during the life-time of Nathanael; he concludes “ that this wonderful prophecy was a promise to Philip and Nathanael, and through them to all mankind; that the time would certainly come, when they should see a free communication between our heaven, (that is, as he supposes, the sun,) and the angels of God descending, and ascending, and conversing with men.” King's Morsels of Criticism, vol. i. 8vo. p. 320.
10 The remainder of the events in this chapter, to the imprisonment of John, are harmonized in the same order by Whiston, Lightfoot, Michaelis, Doddridge, and Newcome. Pilkington inserts before that event the baptism and temptation of Christ; a difference which has already been considered.
11 The third day means, either the third day from Christ's coming into Gali. lee, John i. 43.-or the third day from the conference with Nathanael-or the third day from his disciples first following him-or the third from the commencement of the marriage feast, which usually lasted seven days.
ON THE MIRACLE AT THE MARRIAGE IN CANA. The obscure life of Christ till he was thirty years of age had obliterated, in a great measure, the impression produced upon the people by the circumstances which had attended his advent. But the time had now arrived for our Lord's manifestation of himself to the world. The voice from heaven had proclaimed him the Son of God, his great forerunner had acknowledged him as such, and an act of Omniscience had convinced, and drawn to him a disciple. The hour was now.at hand, when a more public testimony of his Messiahship was to be given, in the revival of miracles. Galilee was the place predicted, and appointed, (Isaiah ix. 1, 2.) See also the Jewish traditions on this subject, in Schoetgen, for the first display of the power and majesty of the Messiah: and we accordingly find that his first miracle was wrought in Cana of Galilee. Lights
2 And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the J. P. 4740.
V. Æ. 27. marriage.
Cana, in Ga
lilee. foot has endeavoured to prove, from the hints, which are given in various parts of the Gospels, concerning the kindred and family of our Lord's mother, and particularly from this account of the festival, and of the manner in which she is represented as possessing more influence and authority than was usual for a mere guest, that this marriage took place at the house of Mary, the sister of the mother of Jesus, and wife of Cleophas, (who was the same as Alpheus) and, that the bride was of that family. I cannot but think it highly probable, that our blessed Saviour wrought this his first miracle in the presence of all his assembled family and connections, to confirm their faith before he entered upon his public ministry. The object of the miracle must be judged by its effect. The disciples whom he had taken from John, saw and believed.
It may be worthy of observation, however, that the Evangelist St. John, who has written the account of the event in his character of historian, is asserted to have been himself the bridegroom. Dr. A. Clarke, in his Preface to the Gospel of St. John, is of this opinion. Lampe (a), in his Prolegomena to his laborious work on St. John's Gospel, asserts the contrary, on the authorities of Ignatius, Tertullian, Augustine, Epiphanius, and Jerome.
The best explanation I have met of this transaction, is that which is given by Rosenmuller in (loc.) from Chrysostom (6), who supposes that the mother and brethren of our Lord were impatient that he should perform some splendid action, and manifest himself to the world, that they might obtain some degree of honour through him. His mother, probably, intimated by some tone, voice, or manner, her desire that he should perform some of those wonderfnl miracles which he had sometimes wrought, (as many conjecture,) for the relief of the domestic poverty of his family. “It does not seem unworthy of our Lord's character," says Rosenmuller in loc. “ that he should have given this consolation to his mother and friends. The idea is suggested by the strong hope expressed by the Virgin Mary on this occasion. But, as there is no other support for this opinion, it may be accounted for, from the conviction his mother entertained of his divine mission, and from the anxiety she would naturally feel, that her son should manifest himself as the promised Messiah. In reply to the suggestion, our Lord, instantly understanding her wishes, checks the halfuttered request, by giving her to understand that she was not to direct him in the exercise of his divine powers, and that the period which her affection anticipated had not yet arrived. The words, “Mine hour is not yet come,' are supposed to signify that his public demonstration of himself was not to commence till John was imprisoned.” Rosenmuller and Kuinoel in loc. quote from Dion Cassius, lib. 51. the expression of Augustus to Cleopatra, to shew that the words of ver. 4. are not to be understood in an unkind or harsh sense-Oápoel Wyúvai, kai Ovuòv čxe á yalóv. That the word yúval was used also as a
J. P. 4740. 3 And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith
21. unto him, They have no wine. Cana, in Ga. lilee.
title of honour among the more ancient Greeks, appears from its use by
Ο βαθυζώνων άνασσα Περσίδων υπερτάτη,
Æschyl. Persæ, line 160.
Æschyl. Persæ, 629. The general opinion, however, of the ancient fathers was, that our Lord used the language of reproof to his mother, as guilty of some indiscretion or precipitancy in thus speaking; as desiring åraipws ri ntelv, kai ły ÓTTELY Ti Tūv avEvpatikõv, says Chrysostom, as quoted by Whitby. Lampe also, in his Commentary on St. John, maintains this latter opinion, vol. i. p. 504. He supposes that our Lord used the Syriac term Xnx, instead of nvx, which is the more honourable appellation. It seems most probable that reproof was intended, and it was clothed in the language of affection, kindness, and respect.
We have now arrived at the first miracle of our Lord mentioned in the New Testament. It will be remembered, that all the writers of the books of the New Testament addressed themselves in the first instance to the Jews; and as one object of these notes, is to point out to the sons of Israel, in this their last captivity, the internal evidence, as it gradually arises before us, that the founder of the Christian Church was the predicted Messiah, it may be worth our while to draw some comparison between the miracles recorded in the Old, and those related in the New Testament. I think it can easily be made to appear, that they are both supported by evidence of the same nature; and consequently, that if the former are received, the latter, on the same grounds, are not to be rejected.
As I make no reference here to those who require arguments to overthrow the paradoxical opinion of Mr. Hume, “that no human testimony can prove a miracle," I shall not stop to consider this or any other speculation of modern infidelity. We may be contented with observing, that " a miracle is an event, which is contrary to experience and the established constitution or course of things, effected by power more than human.” This regular course of things is generally known by the expression, “ the laws of nature;" the word “nature" being used as if it was intended to express some occult quality, which is in itself independent of a creating, or preserving Providence. In this sense of the word, there is no such thing as nature. " Nature," as Cowper has beautifully observed, “is but a name for an effect, whose cause is God :" and the uniform routine of circumstances in animal and vegetable life, in creation, &c. which we daily see, or experience, and on which we may always calculate, does not proceed from any innate principle of life and motion in the inert masses of which the visible universe is composed, but from the immediate and continued agency of that Omnipotence which first created them, and appointed the laws that now govern them. The various results of this will of Omnipotence may, in one sense, as they are more than human power could effect, be called constant, but unregarded miracles; while the deviations from the uniform results thus commanded are only unusual, and therefore more regarded miracles. In both instances, the same active superintendence of an invisible agent is always disco
4 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with J. P. 4740.
V. Æ. 27. thee? mine hour is not yet come.
Cana, in Ga.
lilee. verable. He who ordained the regularity of the universe, and appointed the powers and properties of its beings, can suspend the ordinary laws which govern this lower world. The credibility of the one class of uniform miracles depends upon the testimony of the senses and daily observation : the credibility of the unusual miracles depends upon the evidence of the senses of those who behold them. If the miracles which at present are daily exhibited were from this moment to cease, and another uniform course of events were to demonstrate in another manner the power of God, then, indeed, the experience of one generation would be contrary to the testimony of that which preceded it; but this experience would not falsify the testimony of the former generation. So also, we are no longer witnesses of the unusual miracles of God, yet we should act very irrationally to reject them, and to disbelieve them on that account, since they are transmitted to us by the concurrent testimony of the then existing generation of credible and unprejudiced witnesses.
The Jews, as well as others who believe in the authenticity of the Old Testament, and receive it as a divine revelation, declare their conviction of the certainty that the public miracles recorded therein are true, principally for the six following reasons:-- :
1. The object of the miracles was worthy of its divine author. 2. They were publicly performed.
3. They were submitted to the senses in such a manner, that men might judge of their truth.
4. They were independent of second causes.
5. Public monuments were set up, and outward actions performed to commemorate them.
6. And this was done at the very time when the events took place, and continued afterwards without interruption.
The miracles of Moses, of Elias, and others recorded in the Old Testament, may be divided into those of a private and public nature; each of which are to be received on different grounds, according to the object proposed. The public miracles were designed to impress a whole tribe, or nation, or large body of men, with the conviction of a truth, or to confirm them in the profession of the true faith, in the days of indifference, apostacy, and idolatry: those of a more private nature were designed to convince individuals, or smaller bodies of men, of the same truths ; by relieving human wants, or sufferings, by raising the dead, or in some cases by inflicting punishment, thereby demonstrating the divine mission of the prophet, and the importance and truth of all that he was appointed to teach.
1. Do the Jews believe in the miracles which were wrought by Moses to deliver the Israelites from Egyptian slavery, because it was an object worthy of the Divine Being to save his people at the time when the prediction of his servant had announced their release? How much more worthy of the divine goodness was that greater deliverance of the descendants of the same Israelites from a worse bondage than that of Egypt,- from the captivity of sin and death.
2. Were the miracles of Moses, which effected this deliverance, publicly performed ? Was darkness brought upon the land ? Were the fruits of the ground