The Belief of the Jewish People, and of the Most Eminent Gentile Philosophers, More Especially of Plato and Aristotle, in a Future State.

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Read Books, 2008 - 140 páginas
BELIEF OF THE JEWISH PEOPLE AND OF THE MOST EBfINENT GENTILE PHILOSOPHERS, MORE ESPECSALLY OF PLATO AND ARISTOTLE, IN .A FUTURE STATE, BRIEFLY COKSIDEREJl INCLUDINO AN EXAMINATION INTO SOHE OF TEE LEADINO PRINCIPLES CONTAINED IN BISHOP WARBURTONS DIVINE LEGATION OF hIOSES IN A DISCOURSE PREACHED BEFOFLE THE UKIVERSITY OF OXFORD AT ST, MARYS, BAUCA 30,1828. WITH NOTES AND AN APPENDIX. W, MILLS, B. D. FELLOW 01 MAGDALEN COLLEGE. OXFORD AT THE UNIVERSITY PRESS FOB THE AUTHOR, AND SOLD BY S. PARKEX AND BY C. AND. d. RIVIIYGTON, LONDON. MDCCCXXVIII. TO JOHN THOMAS HOPE, ESQ. THE FOLLOWING DISCOURSE IS INSCRIBED WITH THE SINCEREST FRIENDSHIP AND REGARD. PREFACE. THE following Discourse, delivered up wards of six months since, was not origi- nally intended for publication. It is com- mitted to the press with the sanction of a learned friend, whose opinion the author considers of great value. It was thought that a brief statement of an important question might not be without advantage to others engaged in the same inquiries. The controversies that arose when the Divine Legution of Warhurton was first published hve long since died away, nor is it necessary to awaken them again, ex- cept as far as the chief subject of dispute is connected with the acquisition of reli- gious truth itself. An examination into the belief of Jew or Gentile in the souls immortality before the coming of our Sa- viour, can never cease to be an interesting question to the Christian philosopher. Nor ... v111 PREFACE. will the investigation be without profit to him who pursues it candidly, as a source of moral improvement. He may learn to be thankful on the ground of revelation for the advantages which he enjoys over the most favoured Israelite in the superior blessings and prospects of the new, cornpared with the old dispensation and on the ground of his natural faculties, he will be sensible of the benefits which reason itself has derived from the word of Scrip ture, as well in directing as in limiting its exercise. He has seen the day dearly which the inspired patriarchs of old, with the prophetic eye of faith, at a distance, rejoiced to see and he has received that light of imparted knovledge from Heaven, which the wisest of the heathens felt necessary to clear up the doubts of the speculative mind, and would have hailed with gratitude and reverence. 2 TIMOTHY-I. 10. -who hath aholisiied death, and BrozcgAt Itye L und immortality to Zi-hltt through the gospeE. THESE words form part of an Epistle written by the great apostle of the Gentiles. at a time when he stood in need of all the consolations to be derived from the doctrine which they convey when he was suffering from imprisonment and persecution, and he perceived that the hour of his lnartgrdom was approaching. Rejoicing in the hopes which they inspired, he declared that he was afflicted, and yet was not ashamed and looking forward to his re ward, he, exclaims in a subsequent part of the Epistle, 1 hawe fought a good g, X rave ti, rished my course, I have kept the faith Izezcefofh there is laid up for me a crown of 9-ighteousness, which the Eord, the igI2teous judge, shall give me. Language so full of confidence in his reward and in the grounds of it, so full of trust in the righteous Judge who was to confer it, as plainly to prove that the power of death B was indeed abolished, and that life and im- mortality were brought to light. Yet these expressions of my text, wrrcv- rsr Cwiv X iBupuv, however strong they may appear, are not to be considered as implying that the expectation of a future life had never been heard of till the coming of the Messiah. In its literal acceptation the word wriStr signifies rather to make clear what is obscure, than to bring to light what is entirely unknown thus wrlCrv dihgdaifi, to make the truth manifest, and not to shew forth a truth of which no glim- mering had previously been perceived..

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