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nd should not be looked upon as nugatory wha ta- applied to the investigation of those facts jed/ which are connected with the truth and m-establishment of the Christian religion, that All every prepossession should be swept awar, are and room left for the understanding, to expsns, (tiate without fear, and without incumbrane.

PTER II.. ferent Books of the New Testament.

val o

racters, and possessing the same sep
and original marks of truth with

We might see an expression of honesty, tives, all of them possessing the same claims which it is in the power of written lan- | upon our belief." If it be improbable that guage, as well as of spoken language, to one should be written for the purpose of imconvey. We might see that there was no-posing a falsehood upon the world, it is still thing monstrous or improbable in the nar- more improbable that many should be writrative itself. And, without enumerating ten, all of them conspiring to the same perevery particular calculated to give it the verse and unnatural object. · No one can impression of truth, we may, in the pro doubt, at least, that of the multitude of writgress of our inquiries, have ascertained, that ten testimonies which have come down to copies of this manuscript were to be found us, the true must greatly preponderate over in many places, and in different parts of the the false; and that the deceitful principle, world, proving, by the evidence of its dif-though it exists sometimes, could never opefusion, the general esteem in which it was rate to such an extent, as to carry any great neld by the readers of past ages. This gives | or general imposition in the face of all the us the testimony of these readers to the value I documents which are before us. The supor the performance; and as we are suppos-position must be extended much farther than ing it is a history, and not a work of ima- we have yet carried it, before we reach the gination, it could only be valued on the prin- degree of evidence and of testimony, ol which ciple of the information which was laid be-on many points of ancient history, we are at fore them being true. In this way a solitary this moment in actual possession. Many uocument, transmitted to us from a remote documents have been collected, professing to antiquity, might gain credit in the world. I be written at different times, and by men of Wough it had been lost sight of for many different countries. In this way a great body

yes, and only brought to light by the revi- of ancient literature has been formed, from dos a literary spirit, which had lain dor- which we can collect many points of evimant during a long period of history.

dence, too tedious to enumerate. Do we and further suppose, that in the pro-I find the express concurrence v

ro-find the express concurrence of several auhese researches, another manu- thors to the same piece of history? Do we Qiscovered, having the same cha- find, what is still more impressive, events u possessing the same separate formally announced in one narrative, not

w marks of truth with the former. I told over again, but implied and proceeded hey both touched upon the same period upon as true in another

the same period upon as true in another? Do we find the 1.84 testimony to the same succession of history, through a series of

that a stronger evidence l ages, supported in a way that is natural and ese events would be afford- consistent ? Do we find those compositions was in the power of either which profess a higher antiquity, appealed

aken separately to sup- to by those which profess a lower'? These, le separate circumstances which and a number of other pomus;

ch and a number of other points, which meet credibility to each of the every scholar who betakes himself to the ed together, and give also actual investigation, give a most warm and hy to those points of in- living character of reality to the history of

deliver a com- past times. There is a perversity of mind s is the case when the which may resist all this. There is no end

n the appearance of to the fancies of scepticism. We may plead one another. And even in vain the number of written testimonies,

her, it their artless coincidence, and the perfect un

vidence; designedness of manner by which they often ubsequent testi- | supply the circumstances that serve both to

assertion, that he guide and satisfy the inquirer, and to throw ne truth of the original testi-light and support upon one a

ght and support upon one another. The

infidel will still have 'something behind Tarther h e may be strengthened still I which he can entrench himsell ; and mis la Ta third testimony. All the sepa- is, may be, that the or a third manu- supposition, monstrous and unnatural as it

sepa- is, may be, that the whole of written history mcn confer credibility is a laborious fabrication, sustained for many

en though it ages, and concurred in by many individuals, usupported by any other, with no other purpose than to enjoy

i stronger anticipated blunders of the men of future We have obtained times, whom they had coinbined with s

n the much dexterity to bewilder and lead astray. we a probability lies if it were possible to summon up to mg true, from the mul- presence of the mind the whole mit or copies, and from the spoken testimony, it would be found nesty discernible in the what was false bore a very sinallp!

heigh- to what was true. For many obvious reaence of several narra- 1 sons, the proportion of the 1

Ter-itles, than in believing what he has never

re-doubted—the history of Alexander, and the s, it doctrine of Socrates. Could all the marks fer- of veracity, and the list of subsequent testSta- monies, be exhibited to the eye of the read.

ose er in parallel columns, it would enable hin, om-/at one glance, to form a complete estimate. we We shall have occasion to call his attenter and to this so often, that we may appear to many the of our readers to have expatiated upon ou we introductory principle to a degree that is ua- tiresome and unnecessary. We conceire. fy- however, that it is the best and most peis ney spicuous way of putting the argument. rth, I. The different pieces which make 17 nal | the New Testament, were written by the the authors whose names they bear, and at the up-time which is commonly assigned to thez

After the long slumber of the middle ages all the curiosity of the human mind wa ich awakened, and felt its attention powerful aid, directed to those old writings, which have pot, survived the waste of so many centuries me It were a curious speculation to ascert23

of the precise quantity of evidence which is ane in the information of these old documents ich And it may help us in our estimate, first ter suppose, that in the researches of the be period, there was only one compositie bt- found which professed to be a narrative of en- past times, A number of circunstances ca ter be assigned, which might give a certain de ed gree of probability to the information eten

of this solitary and unsupported document his / There si, first, the general consideralica, ior that the principle upon which a man free er-himself induced to write a true history, in of more frequent and powerful operatie 2e, than the principle upon which a man leta un himself induced to offer a false or a disguised be representation of facts to the world. ? 0-affords a general probability on the side di le the document in question being a true narra in tive; and there may be some particilans to connected with the appearance of the petn-formance itself, which might strengthen ve this probability. We may not be able to ? as discover in the story itself any inducement of which the man could have in publishing R S-lif it were mainly and substantially falsa

of history, and gave testimony to the events, it is plain that a stronger evi for the truth of these events would be a ed, than what it was in the power of of the testimonies taken separately

gave a distinct credibility to each ol
testimonies are added together, and gi
much higher credibility to those points o

rmation upon which they deliver a com- / past times.
mon testimony. This is the case when
testimonies carry in them the appearance
being independent of one another. Ande
when the one is derived iro
still affords an accession to th
because the author of the subsequent les
mony gives us the distinct assertion, that
believed in the truth of the or
mony.

The evidence may be stre
larther, by the accession of a third

script, and a third tesu
rate circumstances which confer cr
upon any one document, even though
stands alone and unsupported
combine themselves into
body of evidence, when we have
the concurrence of ser
case of a single narrative, a prob
on the side of its being true, iro
titude and diffusion of copies,
air of truth and honesty discer
Composition itsell, the p
tened by the coincidence of se

ncurrence of several.

If, even in the much dexte

opy, it would be found, that bore a very small proportion

shion itself, the probability is heigh- to w

proportion of the false to the true must be also small in written testimony. I thinks of disputing the fact; and from the Yet instances of falsehood occur in both; extracts which he makes for the purpose of and the actual ability to separate the false criticism, there ean be no doubt in the mind from the true in written history, proves that of the reader that it is one or other of the four historical evidence has its principles and its Gospels to which he refers. The single testiprobabilities to go upon. There may be the mony of Celsus may be considered as denatural signs of dishonesty. There may be cisive of the fact, that the story of Jesus and the wildness and improbability of the nar- of his life was actually written by his discirative. There may be a total want of ples. Celsus writes about a hundred years agreement on the part of other documents. after the alleged time of the publication of There may be the silence of every author this story; but that it was written by the for ages after the pretended date of the companions of this Jesus, is a fact which he manuscript in question. There may be all never thinks of disputing. He takes it upon these, in sufficient abundance, to convict the the strength of its general notoriety, and the manuscript of forgery and falsehood. This whole history of that period furnishes nohas actually been done in several instances. thing that can attach any doubt or suspicion

The skill and discernment of the human to this circumstance. Referring to a prinmind upon the subject of historical evidence, ciple already taken notice of, had it been have been improved by the exercise. The the history of a philosopher instead of a profew cases in which sentence of condemnation phet, its authenticity would have been adhas been given, are so many testimonies to mitted without any formal testimony to that the competency of the tribunal which has sat effect. It would have been admitted so to in judgment over ther, and give a stability speak, upon the mere existence of the titleto their verdict, when any document is ap-page, combined with this circumstance, that proved of. It is a peculiar subject, and the the whole course of history or tradition does men who stand at a distance from it may not furnish us with a single fact, leading us multiply their suspicions and their skepti- to believe that the correctness of this titlecism at pleasure; but no intelligent man ever page was ever questioned. It would have entered into the details, without feeling the been admitted, not because it was asserted most familiar and satisfying conviction of by subsequent writers, but because they that credit and confidence which it is in the made no assertion upon the subject, because power of historical evidence to bestow. they never thought of converting it into a

Now, to apply this to the object of our matter of discussion, and because their ocpresent division, which is to ascertain the casional references to the book in question age of the document, and the person who is would be looked upon as carrying in them the author of it. These are points of infor-Ja tacit acknowledgement, that it was the mation which may be collected from the very same book which it professed to be at performance itself. They may be found in the present day. The distinct assertion of the body of the composition, or they may Celsus that the pieces in question were be more formally announced in the title written by the companions of Jesus, though page-and every time that the book is re-even at the distance of a hundred years, is ferred to by its title, or the name of the an argument in favour of their authenticity, author and age of the publication are an- which cannot be alleged for many of the nounced in any other document that has most esteemed compositions of antiquity. come down to us, these points of informa It is the addition of a formal testimony to tion receive additional proof from the testi-that kind of general evidence, which is mony of subsequent writers.

founded upon the tacit or implied concurThe New Testament is bound up in one rence of subsequent writers, and which is volume, but we would be underrating its held to be perfectly decisive in similar cases. evidence if we regarded it only as one testi- Had the pieces, which make up the New mony, and that the truth of the facts re- Testament, been the only documents of corded in it rested upon the testimony of past times, the mere existence of a pretenone historian. It is not one publication, sion to such an age, and to such an author, but a collection of several publications, resting on their own information, would which are ascribed to different authors have been sustained as a certain degree of and made their first apearance in different evidence, that the real age and the real parts of the world. To fix the date of their author had been assigned to them. But we appearance, it is necessary to institute a have the testimony of subsequent authors separate inquiry for each publication; and to the same effect; and it is to be remarked, it is the unexcepted testimony of all subse- that it is by far the most crowded, and the quent writers, that two of the Gospels and most closely sustained series of testimonies, several of the Epistles, were written by the of which we have any example in the whole immediate disciples of our Saviour, and field of ancient history. When we assigned published in their lifetime. Celsus, an enemy the testimony of Celsus, it is not to be supof the Christian faith, refers to the affairs of posed that this is the very first which occurs Jesus as written by his disciples. He never after the days of the apostles. The blank

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ly. I thinks of disputing the fact; and from the h; extracts which he makes for the purpose of Ise criticism, there ean be no doubt in the mind nat of the reader that it is one or other of the four

Gospels to which he refers. The single text

mony of Celsus may be considered as de becisive of the fact, that the story of Jesus and ar- of his life was actually written by his diseof ples. Celsus writes about a hundred years its. after the alleged time of the publication of for this story; but that it was written by the he companions of this Jesus, is a fact which be all never thinks of disputing. He takes it upco he the strength of its general notoriety, and the nis/ whole history of that period furnishes tiek es. thing that can attach any doubt or suspierói an to this circumstance. Referring to a prince, ciple already taken notice of, had it beca The the history of a philosopher instead of a proion phet, its authenticity would have been it. 3 to mitted without any formal testimony to un

sat effect. It would have been admitted so I lity speak, upon the mere existence of the ile ap-page, combined with this circumstance, the the the whole course of history or tradition does

ay not furnish us with a single fact, leading us oti- to believe that the correctness of this tiles ver | page was ever questioned. It would have the been admitted, not because it was asserted

of by subsequent writers, but because the the made no assertion upon the subject, because

they never thought of converting it into a Our matter of discussion, and because their cothe casional references to the book in questica

is would be looked upon as carrying in the Cor- a tacit acknowledgement, that it was the the very same book which it professed to be at

in the present day. The distinct assertion or way Celsus that the pieces in question were Atle written by the companions of Jesus, though re- even at the distance of a hundred years : the an argument in favour of their authenticit, an- which cannot be alleged for many of the nas most esteemed compositions of antiquit ma- ( It is the addition of a formal testimony w sti- that kind of general evidence, which :

founded upon the tacit or implied concit ne rence of subsequent writers, and which N its held to be perfectly decisive in similar cases sti- ! Had the pieces, which make up the New re- Testament, been the only documents of of past times, the mere existence of a preten

e COIIIIII

writers. Not to repeat what we have a

of a hundred years betwixt the publication | Jesus Christ. Besides many references of of the original story and the publication of the second and third kind, we have also Celsus, is filled up by antecedent testimonies, other instances of the same kind of testimony which, in all fairness, should be counted / which Clement gave to St. Paul's first Epismore decisive of the point in question. They tle to the Corinthians, than which nothing are the testimonies of Christian writers, and, can be conceived more indisputable. Ignain as far as a nearer opportunity of obtain- tius, writing to the church of Ephesus, takes ing correct information is concerned, they notice of St. Paul's epistle to that church; should be held more valuable than the tes- and Polycarp, an immediate disciple of the timony of Celsus. These references are of apostles, makes the same express reference three kinds :--First, In some cases, their re- to St. Paul's epistle to the Philippians in a ference to the books of the New Testament letter addressed to the people. In carrying is made in the form of an express quotation, our attention down from the apostolical and the author particularly named. Second-fathers, we follow an uninterrupted series ly, In other cases, the quotation is made of testimonies to the authenticity of the cawithout reference to the particular author, nonical scriptures. They get more numerand ushered in by the general words, “as ous and circumstantial as we proceed--a it is written.And, Thirdly, There are thing to be expected from the progress of innumerable allusions to the different parts Christianity, and the greater multitude of of the New Testament, scattered over all the writers, who came forward in its defence writings of the earlier fathers. In this last and illustration.

there is no express citation ; but we have In pursuing the series of writers from the We sentiment, the turn of expression, the days of the apostles down to about 150 years very words of the New Testament, repeated after the publication of the pieces which so olten, and by such a number of different make up the New Testament, we come to

rs, as to leave no doubt upon the mind | Tertullian, of whom Lardner says, “that ut mey were copied from one common I there are perhaps more and longer quota

hich was at that period held in tions of the small volume of the New Tes

nce and estimation. In pursuing tament in this one Christian author, than of a single chasm from the days of the original elerences, we do not meet with all the works of Cicero, though of so un

common excellence for thought and style, u to repeat what we have al-I in the writers of all characters for several ready made some allusion to, the testimo- ages."

original writers to one another. We feel ourselves exposed, in this part of
o assert, that some of the fathers our investigation, to the suspicion which ad-
ings have come down to us, heres to every Christian testimony. We
ompanions of the apostles, and I have already made some attempts to ana.
ned in the books of the New lyse that suspicion into its ingredients, and
ol. Clement, bishop of Rome, I we conceive, that the circumstance of the
oncurrence of all ancient au-Christians being an interested party, is only
he whom Paul mentions in his one, and not perhaps the principal of these
ulppians. In his epistle to ingredients. At all events, this may be the

nh, which was written in proper place for disposing of that one in

mole church of Rome, he gredient, and for offering a few general ob

epistle of Paul to the former servations on the strength of the Christian Take into your hands the epistle testimony. .

u me apostle.” He then. In estimating the value of any testimony, on, which is to be found in there are two distinct objects of considerale to the Corinthians. Could tion; the person who gives the testimony, one this to the Corinthians and the people to whom the testimony 15 no such epistle been in addressed. It is quite needless to enlarge

- nor this an undoubtedl on the resources which, in the present inmerely from the mouth of Istance, we derive from both these consider

the part of the churches ations, and how much each of them contri4. Corinth, to the authenti- butes to the triumph and solidity of the piste ? There are in this Christian argument. In as far as the peo

ent several quotations, ple who give the testimony are concerned, nd, which confirm the exist- how could they be mistaken in their account + books of the New Tes- of the New Testament, when some of them ude of allusions or re-lived in the same age with the original wil

a, to the writings of ters, and were their intimate acquaintances, Acts of the Apostles, and I and when all of them had the benefit of an mose epistles which have uncontrolled series of evidence, reach

to the New Testament. Wel down from the date of the earliest puu vi the fath l onies from some more tions to their own times? Or, now use

conversed with I suspect that they falsified, when there runs

nies of the original writers to on
we proceed to assert, that som
whose writings have com
were the companions of
are even named in the boor
Testament. St. Clement, bisno
is, with the concurrence of all
thors, the same whom Paul men
epistle to the Philippians. In his
the church of Corinth, which wa
the name of the whole church of
refers to the first epistle of Paul
church. “Take into your hands
of the blessed Paul the apost
makes a quotation, which is
Paul's first epistle to the Coru
Clement have done this to th
themselves, had no such ep!
existence? And is not this a
testimony, not merely fron
Clement, but on the part of
both of Rome and Corinth, to
city of such an epistle? The
same epistle of Clement several qu
of the second kind, which con
ence of some other books of th
tament; and a multitude of all
ferences of the third kind, to the wri
the evangelists, the Acts of the AP
a great many of those epis
been admitted into the New
have similar testimonies fro

the fathers, who lived and conversed

on,/sion to such an age, and to such an auther, ns, resting on their own information, FOU irs have been sustained as a certain degree of ent evidence, that the real age and the te eir author had been assigned to them. But we

a have the testimony of subsequent auiler nd to the same effect: and it is to be remarite, re- that it is by far the most crowded, and the nd most closely sustained series of testimonies nel of which we have any example in the what 7d field of ancient history. When we assigned ay the testimony of Celsus, it is not to be sup of posed that this is the very first which occur er/after the days of the apostles. The Walk

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through their writings the same tone of | They would never have been so unwise as plainness and sincerity, which is allowed to to commit in this way a cause, which had stamp the character of authenticity on other not a single circumstance to recommend it productions; and, above all, when, upon the but its truth and its evidences. strength even of heathen testimony, we con- The falsehood of the Christian testimony clude that many of them, by their sufferings on this point, would carry along with it a and death, gave the highest evidence that concurrence of circumstances, each of which man can give, of his speaking under the in- is the strangest and most unprecedented that fluence of a real and honest conviction? In ever was heard of. First, That men, who as far as the people who received the testi- sustained in their writings all the characters mony are concerned, to what other circum- of sincerity, and many of whom submitted stances can we ascribe their concurrence, to martyrdom, as the highest pledge of than to the truth of that testimony ? In sincerity which can possibly be given, should what way was it possible to deceive them have been capable of falsehood at all. upon a point of general notoriety? The Second, That this tendency to falsehood books of the New Testament are refer- should have been exercised so unwisely as to red to by the ancient fathers, as writings appear in an assertion perfectly open to degenerally known and respected by the tection, and which could be so readily conChristians of that period. If they were ob- verted to the discredit of that religion, which scure writings, or had no existence at the it was the favourite ambition of their lives time, how can we account for the credit and to promote and establish in the world. authority of those fathers who appealed to Third, that this testimony could have gainthem, and had the effrontery to insult their ed the concurrence of the people to whom fellow Christians by a falsehood so palpable, it was addressed, and that, with their eyes and so easily detected ? Allow them to perfectly open to its falsehood, they should be capable of this treachery, we have still be ready to make the sacrifice of life, and to explain, how the people came to be the of fortune in supporting it. Fourth, That dupes of so glaring an imposition ; how this testimony should never have been contrathey could be persuaded to give up every dicted by the Jews, and that they should have thing for a religion, whose teachers were so neglected so effectual an opportunity of dis unprincipled as to deceive them, and so un- gracing a religion, the progress of which wise as to commit theinselves upon ground they contemplated with so much jealousy where it was impossible to elude discovery. and alarm Add to this, that it is not the Could Clement have dared to refer the peo- testimony of one writer which we are maof Corinth to an Epistle said to be received king to pass through the ordeal of so many by themselves, and which had no existence? | difficulties. It is the testimony of many or could he have referred the Christians at writers, who lived at different times and large to writings which they never heard in different countries, and who add the very of. And it was not enough to maintain the singular circumstance of their entire agree. semblance of truth with the people of their ment with one another, to the other circumown party.

stances equally unaccountable, which we Where were the Jews all the time ? and have just now enumerated. The falsehood of how was it possible to escape the correction their united testimony is not to be conceived. of these keen and vigilant observers? We It is a supposition which we are warranted mistake the matter much, if we think that to condemn, upon the strength of any one Christianity at that time was making its of the above improbabilities taken separateinsidious way in silence and in secrecy, ly. But the fair way of estimating their through a listless and unconcerned public. effect upon the argument, is to take them All history gives an opposite representation. jointly, and in the language of the doctrine The passions and curiosity of men were of chances, to take the product of all the quite upon the alert. The popular enthu- improbabilities into one another. The arsiasm had been excited on both sides of the gument which this product furnishes for question. It had drawn the attention of es- the truth of the Christian testimony, has, in tablished authorities in different provinces strength and conclusiveness, no parallel in of the empire, and the merits of the Chris- the whole compass of ancient literature. tian cause had become a matter of frequent The testimony of Celsus is looked upon and formal discussion in courts of judicature. as peculiarly valuable, because it is disinterIf, in these circumstances, the Christian ested. But if this consideration gives so Writers had the hardihood to venture upon much weight to the testimony of Celsus, a falsehood, it would have been upon safer why should so much doubt and suspicion ground than what they actually adopted. annex to the testimony of Christian writers, They would never have hazarded to assert several of whom, before his time, have what was so open to contradiction, as the given a fuller and more express testimony existence of books held in reverence among to the authenticity of the Gospels? In the all the churches, and which nobody either persecutions they sustained; in the obvious in or out of these churches ever heard of. I tone of sincerity and honesty which runs through their writings; in their general check which the vigilance, both of Jews agreement upon this subject; in the multi- and Heathens, exercised over every Christude of their followers, who never could | tian writer of that period, --in all these have confided in men that ventured to com-circumstances, they give every evidence of mit themselves, by the assertion of what having delivered a fair and unpolluted testiwas obviously and notoriously false; in thel mony.

CHAPTER III.

On the internal Marks of Truth and Honesty to be found in the New Testament.

Tha

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of They would never have been so unwise a to to commit in this way a cause, which had er not a single circumstance to recommend i he but its truth and its evidences. an- The falsehood of the Christian testimony as on this point, would carry along with 11 nats concurrence of circumstances, each of which in- / is the strangest and most unprecedented to In ever was heard of. First, That men. vb sti- sustained in their writings all the characte: m- of sincerity, and many of whom sublu te ce, to martyrdom, as the highest pledged In sincerity which can possibly be given, shoes om have been capable of falsehood at & he Second, That this tendency to falsehar er- should have been exercised so unwisely as 1 igs appear in an assertion perfectly open to de the tection, and which could be so readily coeob- verted to the discredit of that religion, wida the it was the favourite ambition of their lifa ind to promote and establish in the wors

to Third, that this testimony could have perseired the concurrence of the people to 20 ble, it was addressed, and that, with their eyes

to perfectly open to its falsehood, they shr. till be ready to make the sacrifice of life | the of fortune in supporting it. Fourth, TS Ow this testimony should never have been coatsery dicted by the Jews, and that they should be

S0 neglected so effectual an opportunity of 11 un- gracing a religion, the progress of wha and they contemplated with so much jeazous ery. and alarm. Add to this, that it is not the -eo- testimony of one writer which we are 18 Wed king to pass through the ordeal of so mart ce? difficulties. It is the testimony of many s at writers, who lived at different times di ard in different countries, and who add the very the singular circumstance of their entire agter eir ment with one another, to the other citie

stances equally unaccountable, which and have just now enumerated. The falsehoka

ion their united testimony is not to be CONCEIT We It is a supposition which we are warrant hatto condemn, upon the strength of ans

its of the above improbabilities taken separat cy, Ily. But the fair way of estimating litt lic. effect upon the argument, is to take Lieu on. jointly, and in the language of the douise ere of chances, to take the product of asili 10- improbabilities into one another. The the gument which this product furnishes es the truth of the Christian testimony, has ces strength and conclusiveness, no parasti is the whole compass of ancient literature.

the notice of the profane histo
period. From this source we derive a

which the emperors conducted th
degree of indulgence was allowed to
religious opinions of the peop
held in subjection; in how

II. We shall now look into the New Tes- and a contemporary historian to sustain a tament itself, and endeavour to lay before continued accuracy, through his minute the reader the internal marks of truth and J and numerous allusions to the public policy honesty, which are to be found in it.

and government of the times. Under this head, it may be right to in-! Within the period of the Gospel history,

pon the minute accuracy, which runs Judea experienced a good many vicissitudes fough all its allusions to the existing in the state of its government. At one time anners and circumstances of the times. I it formed part of a kingdom under Herod

"ppreciate the force of this argument, it the Great. At another, it formed part of Wou

de right to attend to the peculiar sit- a smaller government under Archelaus. udea, at ihe time of our Saviour. | It after this came under the direct ad

under the dominion of the Ro- l ministration of a Roman governor; which "perors, and comes frequently under / form was again interrupted for several

I the profane historians of that years, by the elevation of Herod Agrippa to

in this source we derive a great the sovereign power, as exercised by his rety of information, as to the manner in

manner ingrandfather; and it is at last left in the form

grandfather; and it is at last me

perors conducted the govern- of a province at the conclusion of the evaneir different provinces ; what gelical history. There were also frequent

uigence was allowed to the changes in the political state of the counnions of the people whom they tries adjacent to Judea, and which are often

culon; in how far they were / alluded to in the New Testament. A ca w live under the administration of price of the reigning emperor Onen 6 "s; the power which was vest- Trise to a new form of government, and a

ents of provinces ; and a new distribution of territory. It will be her circumstances relative to readily conceived, how much these perpet

u civil jurisprudence of that I ual fluctuations in the state of public affairs, ber of different points in which the histori- add to the power o way, there is a great num-/ both in Judea and its neighbourhood, must

ich the histori- | add to the power and difficulty of that ori estament can be brought deal to which the Gospel history has been comparison with the secular historians subjected.

m ry of Christ and his ! On this part of the subiect, there is no want

nerable references to of witnesses with whom to confront the wrionc affairs. It is not the his-i ters of the New Testament. In addition to the ho unnoticed individuals. | Roman writers who have touched upon the much of the public at-affairs of Judea, we have the benefit of a Jew

ish historian, who has given us a professed They had passed through history of his own country. From him, as was

18 of Justice; and some to be expected, we have a far greater quanweut ine trial and punishment Itity of copious and detailed narrate,"

s easy to perceive, then, I tive to the internal affairs of Judea, to the cament writers were led to manners of the people, and those particu

iese circumstances llars which are connected with their religious story and constitution of I belief, and ecclesiastical constitution. With

mder the cognizance many, it will be supposed to add to the und for an inventor to tread upon; and Christ

ins. This was delicate value of his testimony, that he was not a

ad upon; and Christian; but that, on the other hand, we a an age subsequent have every reason to believe him to have istory. He might in this been a most zealous and determined enemy

ated a tale, by confining to the cause. It is really a most us e obscure and familiar incidents Iercise, to pursue the harmo

omy lor a true sists between the writers of the New Tesla

their own laws; the power
ed in the presidents of provinces
number of other circumstances ro
the criminal and civil jurisprudence
period. In this way, there is a

ans of the New Testament can
into
of the age. The history of Ch
apostles contains innumerable referer
the state of public affairs. It
tory of obscure and unnoticed
They had attracted much of th
tention. They had been be
orsof the country. They had pa:
the established forms of justice;
of them underwent the trial and
of the times. It is easy to per
that the New Testament write
allude to a number of these circums
in the political history and co
the times, which came under the cog
of ordinary historians. This w

ent. The testimony of Celsus is looked UpC re. as peculiarly valuable, because it is disinte anested. But if this consideration gives on much weight to the testimony of (raze, ser/ why should so much doubt and suspicit ed. annex to the testimony of Christian Wila ort, several of whom, before his time, as he given a fuller and more express testme!! ng to the authenticity of the Gospels? In 2 per persecutions they sustained; in the ITB of. I tone of sincerity and honesty which Tu

particularly, if he lived at an age subse
to the time of his history. He n
case have fabricated a tale,
himself to the obscure ang
of private history; but it is only for a

pursue the harmony which sub

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