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myself read the New Testament with them, the question arises, What is care, and found it to consist princi- the testimony that these witnesses pally of confirmation and illustration give, and to what extent does it go ? of Natural Religion, which, I am per- And, in some cases, the answer to suaded, men in general, being pro- this question may not be so clear and perly educated, are capable of under- satisfactory as we could wish; prostanding and justly appreciating ; I bability may be the utmost that we deem it a libel on human nature to can obtain--certainty, in such cuses, assert that mankind are incapable of may be entirely out of the question. judging for themselves, and that they with regard to Supernatural Religion, must and ought to depend, for their I have no hesitation in affirming, that religious ideas, on any dictatorial go- it is always, in some degree, dependvernor, whether ecclesiastical or civil. ent upon things which are in their
Mr. Cogan, adverting to my pro- own nature fallacious; and, therefore, fession of attachment both to Natural whether it be considered in the abReligion and to Christianity, the lat- stract, or in the detail of any partiter of which, I have said, “ I verily cular revelation, certainty must be believe to be true, the former, I ceralways entirely out of the question. tainly know to be so,'
,” imagines that It may still, however, possess a high he has discovered some difference of degree of probability, and be entitled opinion on this subject, between me verily believed.” If, thereand the author of a book, entitled fore, Mr. Locke, in the passages quoApeleutherus ; who, in speaking of a ted by Mr. Cogan, has really given particular article of religious belief,
Natural Religion an advantage over says that certainty is entirely out of the Bible," it was no great "fault ;" the question. And, as it is well and Mr. Cogan need not be very known to Mr. Cogan, and to my anxious to clear himself from the susfriends in general, that the author of picion of being the accomplice of that that book and myself, are, in reality,
illustrious man. one and the same person, I must, of Notwithstanding my declaration of course, be sorry and ashained, if there attachment both to natural and sushould be found to be any material pernatural revelation, with, however, difference between us. But I hope an undisguised preference of the authat a few words of explanation will thority of the former, I cannot admit shew, that the supposed difference is the congratulatory statement of Mr. rather in appearance than in reality; Cogan, that I have “ the good forand will satisfy both Mr. Cogan and tune to possess two religions.". On another of your correspondents, whose the contrary, I am decidedly of opisignature is B, that they have both nion that there never was or can be misunderstood my meaning. When I more than one true and acceptable spoke of Natural Religion as certainly religion; which, as it has been well true, I should have thought it quite observed by my late learned and amiaobvious that I was considering its ble friend, the Rev. Charles Bulkley, general or abstract character, and not “ being originally founded in the perinquiring into the particulars of which fections of God, and the nature of it might be supposed to consist. And, man, must of necessity, in every peundoubtedly, as a general position it riod of time and under every partimay be safely affirmed, that whatever cular dispensation of it, be fundamencan be proved to be a principle of tally and essentially the same.” Natural Religion must be true : be- I now take leave of this controversy; cause the witnesses of this religion regretting that it has been my painful the heavens which declare the glory of duty to appear in opposition to the God—the firmament which sheweth opinions of a gentleman whose perhis handy work—day unto day which sonal character I so highly esteem; uttereth'speech - night untó night and, thanking you, Sir, for permitting which sheweth knowledge-cannot for me to occupy so much space in the a moment be imagined to bear false pages valuable Miscellany. testimony. But, with regard to the
WILLIAM STURCH. supposed particulars of this religion, the case is different. In considering
Mr. Wallace's Remarks on Isaiah ix. of death, upon them hath the light 6, 7.
shined :" ver. 2. The darkness here No. III.
mentioned is supposed by Grotius to N my former remarks, (pp. 21-24 represent the dangers with which Jebrated prophecy contained in Isaiah mies, and the light, the unexpected ix. 6, 7, I endeavoured, first, to re- deliverance which took place on the solve the chronological difficulty which destruction of Sennacherib's ariny. had prevented its application to King “ Populus Hierosolytnitanus in graHezekialı. I then suggested what ap- vissimis constitutus periculis, quæ peared to me the most probable trans- tenebrarum nomine appellant Hebræi. lation of the passage, and intimated an Experietur egregiam liberationen, intention to point out, on some future cæso Divinitus Sennacheribi tam valioccasion, the circumstances which ap- do exercitu.” peared to confine the application of it “ Thou hast multiplied the nation, exclusively to Hezekiah. In fulfilling and not increased the joy : they joy this intention, I am aware that I shall before thee, according to the joy in have no very easy task to accomplish; harvest, and as men rejoice when they but I am encouraged to proceed by divide the spoil :" ver. 3. Lowth subthe hope of throwing some light upon stitutes 15 for the negative particles), a subject which, in my opinion, has on the authority of eleven manuscripts hitherto been involved in great obscue and the Keri, and Dodson adopts this rity.
amended reading : “ Thou hast mulThe following is Lowth’s introduc- tiplied the nation: thou hast increased tory outline of the subject of this pro- their joy :" the joy occasioned by the phecy.
miraculous overthrow of Sennache. “ The confederacy of Retsin, King rib's army: of Syria, and Pekah, King of Israel, For thou hast broken the yoke of against the kingdom of Judah, was his burden, and the staff of his shoulformed in the time of Jotham; and, der, the rod of his oppressor, as in the perhaps, the effects of it were felt in day of Midian:” ver. 4. Whatever the latter part of his reign : see 2 may be thought of the phrases, Kings xv. 37, and note on chap. i. 7– “ walked in darkness,” and “have 9. However, in the very beginning of seen a great light,” and of the applithe reign of Ahaz, they jointly invaded cation of that part of the prophecy in Judah with a powerful army, and an accommodated sense, (Mal. iv. 15, threatened to destroy, or to dethrone, 16,) to the blessings diffused by the the House of David. The king and gospel, there can be no doubt, I think, royal family being in the utmost con- as to the meaning of such expressions sternation on receiving advices of their as “the yoke of his burden,”. designs, Isaiah is sent to them to sup- staff of his shoulder,” and “the rod port and comfort them in their pre- of bis oppressor.” It was obviously sent distress, by assuring them, that the intention of the prophet to point God would make good his promises out the dangers which threatened the to David and his House. This makes Jewish nation at that particular pethe subject of this, and the following, riod, and the manner in which it was and the beginning of the ninth chap- to be delivered from those dangers. ters ; in which there are many and “ For every battle of the warrior great ditficulties.”
is with confused noise, and garments Taking this to be, on the whole, a rolled in blood : but this shall be with fair representation of the circumstances burning and fuel of fire:” ver. 5. under which the prophecy was deli. These words are thus paraphrased by vered, I proceed to examine that part Grotius : “ Aliæ clades hostium soof it which it is my present intention lent parari multo labore multoque to illustrate; and, in doing this, I sanguine; hæc verd similis erit incenmust entreat the reader to go back dio subito consumenti. Planè enim with me to the beginning of the chap- subitd, sine tumultu, sine vulnere, ter.
sine Hebræorum labore aut periculo, “ The people that walked in dark- ab angelo extincti sunt Assyrii. Nulness, have seen a great light: they la flamma tam celeriter eos occidere that dwell in the land of the shadoio potuisset.” Other defeats are usually
attended with the sacrifice of much scriptive are the deceased monarchs labour and blood; but this shall be of the earth, whom the prophet relike a fire which suddenly consumes. presents as in the act of addressing For suddenly, without tumult, without Pharaoh on his descent into the reloss, without either labour or danger gions of the grave. The whole of the on the part of the Hebrews, the Assy. passage bears a very strong resemrians shall be consumed by an angel. blance to the fourteenth chapter of No flame could so quickly destroy Isaiah, in which the destruction of them.
Babylon is foretold, and a fine picture The prophet now goes on to point is drawn of the reception of its moout the illustrious monarch, in whose narch by his brother rulers in the unreign this miraculous deliverance is to seen world. “ Hell from beneath is take place.
moved to meet thee at thy coming ; “ For unto us a child is born, unto it stirreth up the dead for thee, even us a son is given, and the government all the chief ones of the earth : it bath shall be upon his shoulder :" ver. 6. raised up from their thrones all the The birth of a inale child is here fore- kings of the nations.” Isa. xiv. 9.told, and that child heir to the throne On comparing these two passages, it of David. His royal descent is suffi- will be found that the persons who ciently indicated by the assurance that are styled, by the prophet Ezekiel, “ the government shall be upon his “Gods of the Mighty," are no other shoulder.”
than an assemblage of deceased mo“ And his name shall be called " narchs. Surely, then, it need not exHe shall be - This inode of ex- cite our surprise that another Jewish pression is sometimes used by Latin prophet should apply to King Hezeand Greek, as well as Hebrew writers, kiah, who was, next to David, the merely to denote the character or qua- most illustrious and favourite monarch lity of a person or thing. See the of the Jews, an epithet which is thus Note to Monk's Hippolytus, ver. 2, indiscriminately extended to the dewith the reference to Porson. See ceased rulers of Heathen nations. “I also Heyne's Note to Virgil, Georg: am fully satisfied,” says Dr. CarpenII. 238; and for examples in the Old ter, " that these magnificent titles Testainent, see Gen. v. 2; Deut. xxv. would produce no such impressions, 10; Isa. Isi. 3; Jer. xi. 16, &c. In as are now received from them, in the the present case it may denote that minds of those who early understood the epithets which follow are to be the original, and were familiar, from applied as titles of distinction to the childhood, with the language of eastperson who forms the subject of the ern magnificence. We have it froin prophecy.
authentic records, that among the Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty kings of Syria, about two centuries God, " In “ The Monthly Repo- before Christ, the appellation God was sitory” for February I endeavoured to commonly employed as a kind of surshew that these words are improperly name of their kings. Among other translated in our common Bibles, and instances, we find that in the year 172 that they ought to bave been rendered before Christ, the Samaritans sent an “ Wonderful in Counsel, a Mighty embassy to Antiochus, with this inGod;" taking the words in the scription, “ To King Antiochus, Illusinferior sense in which it must always trious God. -In like manner we ineet be taken, when applied to any being with these titles of Chosroes, a Persian except the great Supreine. To justify monarch, about six centuries after this interpretation of the words, Í Christ : Chosroes, King of Kings, must here request the reader to turn to Ruler of the powerfiu, Lord of the Ezek. xxxii. 21, where he will find it nations, Sovereign of peace, Saviour used in the plural number, in a state of of men ; among the Gods a good and
. “The strong eternal man, among men a most illusamong the mighty,” literally, “the trious God; Glorious; Conqueror,' Gods of the mighty,” (onia , &c. Could persons, accustomed to Heb. & goyartes, Vat. potentissimi such appellations and epithets of prinrobustorum, Vulg:,) “shall speak to ces, liave considered even the appelhim out of the midst of hell.” The lation of Mighty God, (when applied persons of whom these words are de- to one who was to be born, whose go
.גבורים regimen with
vernment 'the Lord of hosts would « Everlasting Father, -" Father establish,) as denoting more, than of the age:-What language could that the dignified personage would have conveyed a more appropriate be a Mighty Potentate, an Illustrious description of a monarch like HezeSovereign" (Isaiah's Prophetic Ti- kiah than this ? To say of a king that tles of the Messiah, a Discourse by he is “ the father of his age,' is to Lant Carpenter, LL.D., pp. 26, 27.) speak of him in terms of the greatest To this question only one answer can endearment, as well as the highest be given ; and, on the supposition encomium; and, if Hezekiah is not that this appellation was intended to literally so called by any of those hisbe descriptive of Jesus Christ, the ar- torians who have so briefly recorded gument of Dr. Carpenter appears to the events of his reign, every qualifime conclusive and unanswerable. But, cation necessary to secure to a moas far as I can perceive, we are not narch this enviable title is ascribed to justified in applying the titles con him. He repaired the temple of God, tained in this prophecy to any other restored the religion of his forefathers persoa than King Hezekiah ; and in in all its original purity and splendour, the application of them to him there broke in pieces the idols which had is a peculiar propriety, to which the been erected to Heathen gods during historical writers of the Old Testament the reigns of his predecessors, cut appear to me to have been minutely down their groves and destroyed their attentive. Wheo the King of Assyria temples. Under his mild and pater. sends Tartan, and Rabsaris, and Rab, pal administration Jerusalein recover. shakeh, with a numerous army against ed all its foriner prosperity, and so Jerusalem, the last of these persons, great was the success with which all in an interview with three of Heze. his undertakings were crowned, that kiah's "most intimate friends,” breaks he is again and again said to have out into the following strain of invec, “prospered in all his works.” 2 Kings tive: “Speak ye now to Hezekiah, xvii. 7; 2 Chron. xxxi. 21, xxxii. Thus saith the great King, the King 27-30. of Assyria, What confidence is this “ Prince of Peace.” This conwherein thou trustest? Thou sayest, pletes the climax of the prophet, and (but they are but vain words,) I have forms the finishing stroke to his decounsel and might for the war : scription of Hezekiah's illustrious chanow on whom dost thou trust, that racter; whose reign is uniformly spothou rebellest against ie?” 2 Kings ken of as a peaceful and happy one xviii
. 19, 20. (See likewise xx. 20 ; This will appear the more remarkable 2 Chron. xxxii. 3—8, 23.) Here there if we consider the times in which he appears to me a marked allusion to lived, and the enemies with which he the leading titles contained in Isaiah's had to contend. “ The great King,” prophecy. The words 971221 0789, as Sennacherib is called, in Herodo. Counsel and Might, plainly refer, in tus and Josephus, as well as in the my opinion, to the epithets nyp [or, Old Testament, notwithstanding all
] *, “ Wonderful his formidable preparations against in Counsel, a Mighty God.” That Jerusalem, was compelled to flee with the Assyrian monarch was no stranger a smalt remnant of his army to Nine. to these titles I can readily believe. veh, after an ineffectual attempt to Indeed, there is' a passage found in a reduce the kingdom of Judah into a Jewish writing, quoted by Ramınohun state of subjection ; and when the Roy, (The Precepts of Jesus, &c., same prophet who foretold the birth 2nd ed., p. 315,) 'from which it ap- and future greatness of Hezekiah, anpears that this monarch actually ap. nounced the approaching calamities of propriated to himself epithets siunilar his people, and their ultimate captito those which the prophet applied to vity, this was his memorable reply: Hezekiah. “God said, Let Hezekiah, “Good is the word of the Lord which who has five names, take vengeance thou hast spoken. Is it not good, if upon the King of Assyria, who has peace and truth be in my days ?” taken upon himself five names also. 2 Kings xx. 19. In summing up the Talmud Sanhedrim, ch. xi.”
character of this monarch, the author VOL. XIX.
of the second book of Kings says, that when it must be resigned into the “after him was none like him among hands of him who gave it? The all the kings of Judah, nor any that apostle Paul, who was no stranger to were before him ;" ch. xvii. 5; and, the nature of Christ's kingdom, shall such was the respect in which his resolve these questions in his own memory was held, that “ he was bn. words: “ Then cometh the end, when ried in the chief of the sepulchres of he shall have delivered up the kingthe sons of David, and all Judah and dom to God, even the Father; when the inhabitants of Jerusalem did him he shall have put down all rule, and honour at his death.” 2 Chron. xxxii. all authority and power.--And when 33.
all things shall be subdued unto him, The prophet now proceeds to en- then shall the Son also himself be large upon the glory of Hezekiah's subject unto him that put all things reign in terms of the most animated under him, that God may be ALL IN description : of the increase of his ALL.” I Cor. xv. 24. 28. government and peace there shall be Having now, as I hope, satisfactono end, upon the throne of David and rily shewn that the terms of this celeupon his kingdom, to order it and to brated prophecy were strictly fulfilled establish it with judgment and with in the person of Hezekiah, I will justice, from henceforth, even for briefly state the grounds on which I ever :" ver. 7. Here, it will be ob- venture to pronounce it totally inapserved, the person spoken of is de- plicable to Jesus Christ. Grotius, and scribed as sitting upon David's throne, other learned commentators, finding inheriting his kingdoin, and dispens- that many of the prophecies supposed ing judgment with justice: language to relate to the Messiah had an obviwhich applies in a peculiarly forcible ous reference to eminent individuals manner to Hezekiah. It is said like- who existed long before the time of wise, that “of the increase of his Jesus, and wishing, at the same time, government and peace there shall be to retain in its full force the argument uo end;" the meaning of which I take in favour of Christianity deduced from to be this: that his reign will be pro- the prophecies of the Old Testament, tracted to an unusual length, that it had recourse to the theory of a double will be, on the whole, peaceable, and sense. Lowth availed himself of the that there will be no end to the in- same ingenious contrivance in the crease of his government till the period notes to his Translation of Isaiah ; of his death. To justify this inter- and sanctioned by his authority and pretation I shall enter into no minute example this double dealing with the and laboured criticism, but content Scriptures of eternal truth. "Whiston, inyself with quoting one or two pas- with characteristic ingenuousness, opsages of Scripture, in which similar posed this theory, and contended that phraseology occurs. “ There is one
“the prophecies of the Old Testament, alone, and there is not a second; yea, at all appertaining to the Messiah, he hath neither child nor brother, yet particularly those which are quoted there is no end of all his labour;" as testimonies and arguments in the (Eccles. iv. 8;) no end of it but with New Testament, do properly and solely the termination of his life. “ Their belong to the Messiab, and do not at land is full of silver and gold, neither all concern any other person ;” and is there any end of their treasures.” Dr. Benson, in his “ Essay concern(Isa. ii. 7.) These treasures could not ing the Unity of Sense,” made it his have been absolutely inexhaustible. professed object " to shew that no There must have been some end to text of scripture has more than one them, however abundant. To the single sense.” In accomplishing this same purpose see Eccles. iv. 16; object, the last-mentioned writer apNahum ii. 9, iii. 3. But apply these pears to me to have been eminently words, as they are usually applied, to successful ; and, although I cannot Jesus Christ, and in the orthodox always agree with him in the appli
Is the kingdom which he has cation of his own principles, to the received from the Father to have no correctness of those principles themend? Is the period never to arrive selves I cordially and unhesitatingly