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sense of the scriptures, which they receiv’da partly by conversation with Jesus after his death, and partly by () inspiration ; and who might seem to act an inconsistent part, in interpreting the scriptures in so many respects about Jesus as they did, according to the traditional rules and explications of the Jews, and yet rejecting their traditional explication in respect to the temporal kingdom of their MésȘIAS,... : In fine, the miracles wrought by Jesus are, according to the gospel - fcheme, no abfolute proofs of his being the Messias, or of the truth of christianity. :: Those miracles were prophesy'd of in the Old Testament, like the other matters of the gospel ; and therefore they are no otherwise to be consider'd as proofs of those points, than as fulfilling the sayings in the Old Testament, like other gospel-matters and events, or (as a Boylean lecturer well expresses it) (1), as comprehended in, and exactly confonant to the prophesies concerning the MES= SIAS. In that fenfe they are good proofs, and in that sense only for, as I have before obsery'd, if Jesus is not the person prophefy'd of as the Messias in the Old Testament, his miracles will not prove him to be so, nor prove his divine mission. And in that sense 52: "3 . D 3 .. only
(1) Acts 26.-22. 12. 1701. Serma 8. p297 .
(u) Stanhope's Boyl. Left.
only Jesus himself urges his miracles to prove his being the Messias. For when (2) JOHN the baptist, who had heard in prison of the works or miracles of Christ, but yet doubt ed whether he was the Messias, as perhaps expecting, like 'other Jews, and like the apostles themselves, a temporal prince, and one who would deliver him from his prison, sent two of his disciples to him, to know whether he was the Messias, or they were to look for another ; Christ declares himfélf to be the Messias, by Jhewwing, that the () characters of the Messias as extant ini the prophets manifestly agreed to him in these words, Go and hero Joạn, again those things, which you do bear and Tee : The blind receide their fight, and the lame walk, the leper's are cleans'd, and the deaf bear, the dead are rais'd up, and the poor have the gospel preachd unto them. *And blessed are they who shall not be offend ed in me. Which characters consist of two parts, first in doing miracles, and secondly, in appearing in a low state, and teaching the poor (which last was much mistaken by, and gave great offence to the Jews; for as to the first, the Jews' () agreed to‘it.). Nei,
(2) Matt. 11. 2, 3, : Vid. Hammondum & Clericum in locum....
(x) See Hammond, who cites Ifaiah, as referr'd to ch. 29. 18, 19. & 21. 1. & 35.5, 6. WE A D)
(y) Matt. II. 4--6, (2) John .30 ',!:
ther of which would, of itself, be sufficient to prove Jesus to be the MESSIAS, without the other, nor both together, but as they are the characters of the MESSI AS, in the prophets. .. Fra įre: 2.3 :1
est' !!} !; VIII.. That those proofs are typical or allegorical
3111, :,: proofs. o f the Arength or weakness of the proofs
© for christianity out of the Old Testament we seem well qualify'd to judge, by having the Old and New Testament in our hands; the first containing the proofs of christianity, and the latter the application of those proofs. And we should seem to have nothing more to do, but to compare the Old and New Testament together.
But these proofs taken out of the Old. and urg'd in the New Testament, being, sometimes, either not to be found in the old, or not urg'd in the New, according to the literal and obvious sense, which they seem to bear in their suppos'd places in the Old, and therefore not proofs according to scholaftick rules; almost all christian (a) com
D4 . ' ment ators
(a) Origen, Eusebius, Jerom, (who says dire&tly to Painmachius, that the passages alledg’d, by Paul, out
mentators on the bible, and advocates for the christian religion, both antientand modern, have judgʻd them to be apply'd in a fecondary, or typical, or mystical, or allegorical, or enigmatical sense, that is, in a lense different from the obvious and literal sense, which they bear in the Old Testa ment,
1. Thus for example, St. MATTHEW af ter having given an account of the conception of the virgin Mary, and of the birth of Jesus, says, (b) all this was done that it might be fulfill'd, which was spoken by the prophet, saying, “ Behold a virgin « shall be with child, and shall bring forth ç a Son, and they shall call his name Im
of the old Testament, aliter in ruis locis, aliter in Epie itolis Paulinis sonant) Cyril, Chrysoitom, Auftinai mong the Antients. And among the Moderns, Sextus Senenfis in Bibl. Sancta; Gladius in Philologia Sacra ; Grotius in Vetus and Nov. Teft. & ficut at in Ila. 53.1. in Psal, 22. 1. and in Matt. j. 22 ; Cuneus dan's fa Republique des Hebreux, l. 3. c. 8. Vol. 1. p. 376; Simon Hift. Crit. du V.T. p. 97, 98. ---- Hist. Crit. du Nov. Tęst. c. 21. & 22.----Suppl. aux.Ceremonies des Juifs. p. 7 ; Jenkins's Reasonab. of the Christian Religion ; Nichols Conference with a Theift. Vol. 3d. White on . Isaiah ; Dupin. Differt. Prelim. sur la Bible, 1. 1.c. 10; and Le Clerc Bib. Choisie, Vol. 27. p. 388..-- 399. See WHIston's Confeffion of this Matter in Efsay, &c, p. 92.
(b) Matt. 1. 22, 23• .
MANUEL;" But the words, as they stand in ISAIAH, (c) from whom they are suppos'd to be taken, do, in their obvious and literal sense, relate to a young woman in the days of AHAZ, king of Judah, as will appear by consider ing the context. in :
(d) When Rezin, king of Syria, and PEKAH, king of Israel, were confederatęs in arms together, against Abaz, king of Fudab; ISAIAH the prophet was sent by God first to comfort AHáz and his nation, and afterwards to assure them by a sign or miracle, that his enemies should in a little time be confounded. · But Ahaz refusing a fign at the prophet's hands, the prophet said, (e) The Lord Mhall give you a sign : Bebold a virgin (or (f) young woman) Mall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his vame IMMANUEL. Butter and Honey Tall be eat; that he mczy know to refuse the evil, and chuse the good. For before (8) the child fall know to refuse the evil and chuife the good, the land ball be forsaken of both ber kings. And this sign is accordingly given Araz by the prophet, who (5) took two witneles, and in their presence went into the faid virgin or young woman, call'd the () prophetess, who in due time conceiv'd
. (c) Isa. 7. 14. (d).č. 7. (e) w: 14---16. (f) Vide Erasmum in Matt.c. 1. v. 30 (5) See Isaiah 8. 4. (b). Ib. v. 2. i8.''; (iv. z.