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they are found. If this be admitted, then it is argued that the expression, “ in their proper tongue,” would not have been used by a Jew, but is suitable to the pen of a Gentile writing concerning Jews*. The reader will judge of the probability of this conclusion, and we urge the coincidence no farther than that probability extends. The coincidence, if it be one, is so remote from all possibility of design, that nothing need be added to satisfy the reader upon that part of the argument.
No. IV. · Chap. iv. 9. “ With Onesimus, a faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you." :
Observe how it may be made out that Onesimus was a Colossian. Turn to the Epistle to Philemon, and you will find that Onesimus was the servant or slave of Philemon. The question therefore will be, to what city Philemon belonged. In the epistle addressed to him this is not declared. It appears only that he was of the same place, whatever that place was, with an eminent Christian named Archippus.“ Paul, a pri
* Vide Benson's Dissertation, vol. i. p. 318, of his works, ed. 1756.
soner of Jesus Christ and Timothy our bro-
Would a forger, who had this purpose in view, have left his readers to hunt it out, by going forward and backward from one epistle to anothor, in order to connect Onesimus with Philemon, Philemon with Archippus, and Archippus with Colosse? all, which he must do before he arrives at his discovery, that it was truly said of Onesimus," he is one of you.” .ne
THE FIRST EPISTLE TO THE THESSALONIANS.
: : No. I. It is known to every reader of Scripture, that the First Epistle to the Thessalonians speaks of the coming of Christ in terms which indicate an expectation of his speedy appearance: “ For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God, and the dead in Christ shall rise first; then we which are alive and remain, shall be caught up together with them in the clouds—But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.” (Chap. iv. 15, 16, 17. ch. v. 4.)
Whatever other construction these texts may bear, the idea they leave upon the mind of an ordinary reader, is that of the author of the epistle looking for the day of judgement to take place in his own time, or near to it. Now the use which I make of this circum
THE FIRST EPISTLE TO THE THESSALONIANS. 26% stance, is to deduce from it a proof that the epistle itself was not the production of a subsequent age. Would an impostor have given this expectation to St. Paul, after experience had proved it to be erroneous ? or would he have put into the apostle's mouth, or, which is the same thing, into writings purporting to come from his hạnd, expressions, if not necessarily conveying, at least easily interpreted to convey, an opinion which was then known to be founded in mistake? I state this as an argument to show that the epistle was contemporary with St. Paul, which is little less than to show that it actually proceeded from his pen. For I question whether any ancient forgeries were executed in the life-time of the person whose name they bear; nor was the primitive situac tion of the church likely to give birth to such an attempt.
No. II. . . Our epistle concludes with a direction, that it should be publicly read in the church to which it was addressed: “ I charge you by the Lord, that this epistle be read unto all the holy brethren.” The existence of this clause in the body of the epistle is an evidence of its authenticity; because to produce