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TRUTH AND DIVINE ORIGIN
THE THIRTEENTH EDITION.
TRUTH AND DIVINE ORIGIN
The method I intend to pursue in this Treatise is, to present to my readers the following series of PROPOSITIOns, and then to prove distinctly the truth of each.
I. From considering the state of the heathen world, before the appearance of our Lord upon earth, it is evident that there was an absolute necessity for a revelation of God's will, and of course, a great probability beforehand that such a revelation would be granted.
II. At the very time when there was a general expectation in the world of some extraordinary personage making his appearance in it, a person called Jesus Christ did actually
appear upon earth, asserting that he was the Son of God, and that he was sent from heaven to teach mankind true religion ; and he did accordingly found a religion, which from him was called The CHRISTIAN RELIGION, and which has been professed by great numbers of people from that time to the present.
III. The books of the New Testament were written by those persons to whom they are ascribed, and contain a faithful history of Christ and his religion: and the account there given of both, may be securely relied upon as strictly true.
IV. The scriptures of the Old Testament (which are connected with those of the New) are the genuine writings of those whose names they bear; and give a true account of the Mosaic dispensation, of the historical facts, the divine commands, the moral precepts, and the prophecies which they contain.
V. The character of Christ, as represented in the gospels, affords very strong ground for believing that he was a divine person.
VI. The sublimity of his doctrines and the purity of his moral precepts confirm this belief.
VII. The rapid and successful propagation of the gospel by the first teachers of it, through a large part of the world, is a proof that they were favoured with divine assistance and support.
VIII. A comparison betwixt Christ and Mahomet, and their respective religions, leads us to conclude, that as the religion of the latter was confessedly the invention of man, that of the former was derived from God.
IX. The predictions delivered by the ancient prophets, and fulfilled in our Saviour, shew that he was the Messiah expected by the Jews, and that he came into the world by divine appointment, to be the great deliverer and redeemer of mankind.
X. The prophecies delivered by our Saviour himself, prove that he was endued with the foreknowledge of future events, which belongs only to God and to those inspired by him.