« ForrigeFortsæt »
76.] The System therefore or Scheme of Things set up by Mr.W. seems to me to combat the Christian Scheme received in all Ages and Times, and aflerts what is contrary to the most notorious Fact, and to the most univerfal Practice of all Christians before, as well as after, JEROM. For if any one Christian Fact be true, it is, that Christians in all Ages and Times, and more especially in the primitive Times, have both understood the Apostles to have argued allegorically from the Prophesies cited by them out of the Old Testament, or have themselves argued allegorically from the Prophefies they themselves cited out of the Old Testament ; which last seems fufficient to prove the Apostles to have been allegorical Interpreters of the Old Testament, according to the common Topick of Divines, who contend that the earliest Fathers best teach us the Sense and Doctrine of the Apostles. And Mr. W. is the first Theorist-Divine, who, to assert the Authority of the New Testament, has pretended, that the Old Testament (in really genuine Passages) is corrupted; all other Christians asserting the Integrity of the Old (and some even with Respect to corrupted Passages) to prove the Authority of the New. And I believe he is the first Christian Author, who ever asserted, either that all the Prophesies cited by the Authors of the New Testament from the Old, were fulfill'd in their literal Sense ; or that to consider the Apostles as applying any of them in an allegorical Manner, was a weak and enthusiastical Scheme ;
all others, as far as I can learn, contending at most for the literal Sense of some Prophefies only; and some (f) making it the Glory of Christianity to be founded on Allegory, and not in Criticism, which, they say, would have render'd the Writings of the Apostles ten Times more liable to Exceptions than now they are ; and also to be a wonderful Confirmation of Christianity, that the Apostles, who were Men of no Literature and Education, and never spent their Time in the Schools of the Rabbi's, Thould be such eminent Masters in Allegory or Rabbinical Learning, and mould be so excellently versed in their traditionary Explications of Prophehes.
It seems therefore most destructive of Chriftianity to suppose ; that typical or allegorical Arguing is in any Respect weak and enthusastical; and that the Apostles always argued in the Matter of Propheses according to the literal Sense of the Prophefies and the Way of Reasoning used in the Schools ; since it is most apparent; that the whole Gospel is in every Respect founded on Type and Allegory; that the Apostles in most, if not in all Cases reafon'd typically and allegorically ; and that, if the Apostles be supposed to ģ) reason always after the Rules used in the Schools, and if their Writings be brought to the Test of those Rules, the Books of the Old and New Testa
(V) Nichols's Conf. with a Theift, Vol. 3. p. 64, 65. (8) Simon Hift. Crit. du N. Telt. c. 21, & 22. Cuneus Rep. des Heb. Vol. 1. p. 376, 377.
ment will be in an irreconcileable State, and the Difficulties against Christianity will be incapable of being solved. Any that call themfelves Christians, says (6) Dr. Allix, should take Heed how they deny the Force and Authority of that Way of traditional Interpretation, which has been antiently received in the Jewish Church.
That Mr. WHISTON's first Propoption is
subverted by his Book.
M R . W's first Proposition, (i) That the I l present Text of the Old Testament is, generally speaking, both in the History, the Laws, the Prophefes, and the divine Hymns ; or as to the main Tenor and Current of the whole, the very same now that it ever has been from the utmost Antiquity; is subverted by and inconfistent with the whole Scheme, and most of the following Parts of his Book, which chiefly consists in asserting and proving, that the Text of the Old Testament is(k) confiderably and greatly different from what it was in the second Century, and not a little corrupted ; and that the Old and New Testament are in so irreconcileable a State, by
b) Allix's Judgment of the Jewish Church against the Unitarians, p. 51.
lij Whilton Elay, p. 1.
(k) Ib. p. 15. 18. 33. 49. 88. 113. 116. 128. 182, 183. 220. 262, 263. 281 – 289.
Means of Disocations in the Old Testament, and of the Introduction of such other Changes therein, which make the most apparent Inconfistencies and Contradictions between the Old 'and New Testament, as to overthrow the Proofs of the Truth of Christianity cited by the Apostles from the Old Testament; which great Corruptions are the Foundation and ReaTons of Mr. Whiston's Elay towards restoring the true Text of the Old Testament.
and Newhith of Christianity ment; which
A VING made an End of my
ceed to give you some Account of 1603 the Gentleman himself; who for some Time past has made no small Noise, not only in England but in divers Parts of Europe, by his numerous Writings.
He is a Person of extraordinary natural Parts; and of great acquired Learning, particularly in Philosophy and Mathematicks, but, above all, in Theology; which he has study'd with the greatest Application and Integrity in the Scriptures, and in the Writings of the Antients ; despising the Catechisms, Confessions, or Articles of Faith and Traditions of all modern Churches, and the Commentaries on Scripture, and systematical Books of all modern Theologues.
He knows how to make the best of every Argument he takes in Hand. By his Sagacity