Billeder på siden

If therefore men have been converted to christianity by the books of the New Testament, or by the writings of chriftians, they have been converted by the jewish allegorie cal method of arguing from the Old Testament.

Typical and allegorical reafoning was deem'd fo ftrong and useful by the most emipent of the primitive apologists for chriftianity, towards the conversion of Pagans, that they use this following argument to them; which I shall give you in the words of Justin MARTYR, who urges it in its full strengths referring you farther to (2) TERTULLIAN, fx) Mixurius Felix, and others. Says JusTin to the pagans, (xx) The cross is the characteristick of Christ's power and go vernment, and is visible almost in every thing we fee: for cast your eyes apon the world, and tell me, whether any thing is tra111* atted, any commerce maintain'd with cuk the resemblance of a crofs. Without this trophy of ours, yoŲ cannot go to feas for. navigation depends upon sails, and they are made in the fashion of a crofs. There is neither ploughing, nor digging, nor any handicraft work perform d, without in

I 2


[merged small][ocr errors]

ftruments of this figure ; nay a man is distinguish'd from a beast by the uprightness of his body, and the extension of his arms, and the prominency of the nose be breathes thro', which are all representar tions of the cross, in allusion to which the prophet Speaks, (y) the breath of our nostrils Christ the Lord. Moreover, your banners declare the power of this figure ; and the trophies you use every where in your publick procesions, are symbols of power and dominion, altho? in your prasi Etice you have no regard to the reason of the figure; and the images of your departed Emperors you consecrate upon CrossLIKE engines, and infcribe them Gods. Since therefore we invite you rèason and the ceremony of the Cross, so much in vogue among you, we know we hall be blameless for the future, whether you embrace the christian faith or not, for we have done our best (that is, we have argu'd typically and allegorically with you) to make you christians. · The fam’d Irenæus proves ; that there cannot be more, nor fewer than (2) four gospels; because there are four corners of


© Lament.

(2) Irenæus, l. 3. C. II. ločumn.

Vide Femårdentii Annot. in

the world, and four principal winds, and from many other such topicks. And an emi. nent critick (a) observes of all the primitive fathers, that they, omnia gentium fa&ta, ditta, fcripta ita interpretabantur ut ea omnia propofito fuo accommodarent, aliquando contra gentium mentem, i * But what seems furprizing, Mr. W. himfelf is not inferior to IRENÆUS in typical argumentation ; by arguing in the same manner, and with the same strength for the apostolical constitutions (which is with him the most sacred book of the New Testament), as IRENÆUS does for the four gospelsa These (1) constitutions, fays he, appear plainly to be genuine, and to be derivd by the apostles from our Saviour, because they have those distinguishing characters belonging to divine appointments, which those parallei settlements under the law of Moses that were undoubtedly divine, exhibit to uso He mentions these following among others, as fome of the most obvious particularsa ! !

1. As the jewis laws, those in para ticular which typify'd the christian difr pensation, were given, as te place, one a mountain, Sinai ; and as to time, in just C ::... 1 3iu.ii forty

....'. indian Ban

(a) Def. Heraldus in. Tertullian. Apol. p. 77 (b) Whifton's Ejay on the Apoftol. Conftit: p. 172.(:

forty days fpace : So were these Constte TUTIONS or christian laws given as to place; on a mountain, Sion; (for which imaginary place of the delivery of his ima. ginary apoftolick constitutions, he can have no (c) proof ;) and as to time, in just forty days Space also, (for which imae ginary term he has equal proofs) befi re our Lord's final afcenfion. And these circumt Atances are so observable under the gufpels thåt memorials both of the place and time cona finid mang ages in the christian church (which memorials are likewife without proof) and by them the ancient types and prophesies Were eminently fulfill'd, as 'tis easy to obserce from what has been said. : *; 2. As the whole body of the laws of Moses seem to have been divided into two main branches, the one fecret, but the other open and publish'd to the whole world written for their daily use, and put into Ecienģ body's hands, may part of it at least written in pillars also (which firft vreench has no foundation in the bible, and is the mere invention of modern Jews, who, ia great deal above a thousand years after Moses publifi'd an crab Law, which they pretended had been secretly given to MoSis at mount Sinai, at the same time that


[ocr errors][merged small]

the written Law was given ;) So it was more certainly as to the laws of CHRIST. That part which is containd in the books of the New Testament being in like mana ner open to all, and constantly read in families and publick assemblies; but the other part, cont ain'd in these books, intrusted secretly with the goverriors of the church, as the proper rule of their publick courts, assemblies, and administrations, as we bave al. ready feen. • He has other such typical considerations, which I omit, referring my reader to them. I shall only observe, upon these two cited, that Mr.W. by much out-typifies Irenæus: for IRANEųs only makes things which are fuppos'd to have a real existence, and have a similitude in fome respect, to be type and antitype : But Mr. W. invents things first, and then invents type and anti-type.

If Mr W 'therefore will duely consider the conftant pradife and great success of allegorical argumentation, and the mighty force of allegorical and typical arguments upon himself; he need not have recourse to the supposition of a loft Old Testament to avoid the allegorical bypothesis ; nor need he be fo apprehensive of the (d) insults and


[ocr errors]

(d) Whiston’s Boylean Le&t. p. 16, 20, 29. say, Sc. p. 92.

lb. Ef

« ForrigeFortsæt »