Billeder på siden

ftem of Jesse, and a branch (Netser) hall grow out of his roots. Where the argument lies in the word Netser ; which is by the bebrew doctors call’d, An argument drawn from the fimilitude of words, without regard bad to the sense of the place ; the term Netser, approaching to, and therefore enigmatically signifying Nazarene. So that Jesus's dwelling at Nazareth, which intituled him to the name Nazarene, fulfill'd the prophesy, He hall be called a Nazarene, or Netfer.'

[3.] Thirdly, he cites another (1) text, wherein the MESSIAS is called Tsemab, that is to say, a branch. Now the word Tsemah having the fame fignification with Netser ; Netfer may be put in the room of Tsemah, whereby the prophet may be said to call the Messias Netfer, which is to call him Nazarene.

These texts of the Old Testament are fome of those, which my author, after the jewish doctors, fuppofes referv'd for explanation till the times of the MESSIAS; when the enigmas contain'd in them were to be unridled, or the prophesies contain'd in them were to be shown to be fulfillid.

IV. The next prophesy cited by me as not fulfill'd literally, but mystically and allegorically, is contain'd in our Saviour's (m) making John the Baptist to be the Elias pro


(1) Zach. 6. 12.

(m) Matt. II. 14.

phefy'd of as to come before the Messias. My author (n) fays, there was a tradition among the Jews, that Elias was to come before the MESSIAS; and because he was not come, they could not believe the Messias was come. Jesus knowing this, told them that John the Baptist was the Elias; who was very justly to be deem'd Elias, as having the @) virtues of Elias. And to confirm this interpretation, my author refers to (p) one of his Theses, where he shows, that, by proper names, the Jews did not always mean those very persons who are so nam’d, but those who resemble them in their lives and actions.

V. As to the prophesy of Isaiah cited by Jesus (9) as fulfill'd in the Jews of his times, By hearing ye shall bear, and shall not underStand; that, according to my (r) author, is fulfill'd as typifying, like all the jewish history, fomething to happen in the times of the MESSIAS. For the ignorance and obstinacy of the Jews being the same, in our Saviour's time as in the time of the prophet ISAIAH, was the anti-type to the type, or the completion of ISAIAH's prophesy.

Thus i hope, I have given such a state of the case from (1) Sureshusius, as may qua


(n) Surenkusius, p. 329-331. (o) See Luke 1. 17.

(p) 15 Thes. de modis interpretandi. (9) Matt. 13. 34, 35. (r) Surenhusius, p, 241, 242.

(s) See Ockley's Letter at the end of Wotton's Preface to Miscellaneous Discourses, &c.

lify the readers to judge of that scheme and its rules, which the apostles follow'd in arguing from the Old Testament, and to understand the force of the apostles arguments, which were grounded thereon. But if not; I refer them to the Treatise itself of SurenHUSIUS; wherein the most ingenious and learned author has set in the juftest light the rules of reasoning used by the Jews, and follow'd by the apostles, and shown the pertinency of all the quotations made by the apostles from the Old Testament, according to those rules ; and consequently has truly defended christianity, by showing how the apostles grounded it on the Old Testament, beyond what any author ever did before him. It is indeed possible, that in the application of the jewish rules of interpretation and reasoning, to the passages cited and urg'd by the apostles out of the Old Testament, he may not always have hit upon those peculiar rules, which the apostle had, in every citation, more particularly in view: for many of those rules will equally serve the fame purpose ; and therefore those, which he does not on some occasions make use of, may have been the rules, which the apostles had in view, as also those, which he does make use of, may not sometimes be the rules, which the apostles had immediately in view. But yet nothing can be plainer, from the reasonings of the apostles, and from the common way of reasoning used among the Jews, known


both by their practice and rules, as they are both explain’d with the greatest clearness by Sureshusius ; than that, the apostles, who manifestly argu’d, not by scholastick rules, and interpreted not the passages they cited out of the Old Testament according to the obvious and literal sense they bore therein, did proceed by such (t) rules as are set forth by him.

The learned Mr. Ockley in a letter written to and publish'd by Dr. Wotton, (tt) says, If he had an opportunity, he would certainly have gone thro' the books of the New Testament under a Jew. What foever some of our gentlemen man think, this he is well assured of, that they understand it better then we do. They are throughly acquainted with all the forms of Speech, and all the allusions, which (because they occur but rarely) are obscure to Us, tho in common and very familiar use among them; as has been admirably demonstrated by the learned SURENHusius, in his Reconciliator.


(t) Le Clerc. Bibl. Chois. tom. 25. p. 413.

(tt) Wotton's Miscell. Discourses of the Seribes and Phas risees, &c. at the end of the prefaèe.

An answer to an objection, that the allegoris

cal reasonings of the apostles were not defign'd for absolute proofs of christianity, but for proofs ad hominem, to the Jews, who were accustomed to that way of rea

soning. TT may be objected, from divers learned

I authors, to what I have advanc'd, “ that << christianity is not grounded on the pro« phetical or other quotations made from « the Old in the New Testament; but that ç those quotations being allegorically apç ply'd by the authors of the New Testament, « are only arguments ad hominem, to con« vince the Jews of the truth of christianity, « who allowed such a method of arguing to « be valid ; and are not arguments to the rest C of mankind.

To which I answer ::

1. First, that this distinction is the pure invention of those who make the objection, and has not only no foundation in the New Teftament, from whence only it should be taken; but is utterly subverted by it. For the authors of the books of the New Testament always argue absolutely from the quotations they make out of the books of the Old Testament. Moses and the prophets


« ForrigeFortsæt »