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“Of the multitude that thronged to hear that sermon there are now comparatively few survivors. Some have lately departed, and among them the venerable Christopher Ander
son. In reference to this sermon, he wrote, not long before his own death: 'It was understood that Mr. James Haldane meant to examine and expose this melancholy affair. Familiar as he had been for years with sea life, and once himself under the tyranny of these miserable "laws of honor," there was no man better qualified. The fear of God was now his governing principle, yet it required no common fortitude to meet such a case before such an audience.'
"The spacious building in which he preached, then capable of seating more than three thousand persons, was crowded to the doors. It was at the time of the threatened invasion,
when the whole nation resounded with the clang of arms, and the most peaceful civilians were often arrayed in military costume. When he entered, there rose before him, not only the usual congregation, but officers in full uniform from Piershill barracks and the Castle-cavalry, infantry, artillery, and volunteers, officers on Lord Moira's staff, magistrates, men of letters and philosophers, men of business and retired gentlemen-all assembled to hear what was to be said in reprobation of dueling, and of the account circulating in print, from the pen of the Rev. Fellow of St. John's, Cambridge, who
attended the death-bed of Lord Camelford."
heal on the Sabbath-day. We have thus a clear reason why the people waited until the evening, but one of which no trace
exists in Matthew's narrative taken alone.
There is here no reason assigned why the sick were not, on this occasion, brought to Jesus until the evening. On turning, however, to the narrative in the other Gospels, (Marki, 32; Luke iv, 40, 41,) this reason is apparent. We are told that on the Sabbath-day Jesus entered into the synagogue at Capernaum, and taught; that immediately on leaving it he entered into the house of Simon, and it was the very same evening on which this crowd of applicants for mercy were gathered at the door. Now, from Matt. xii, 10, it also appears that the opinion was common among the Jews, that it was not lawful to
"Now the names of the twelve apostles are these: The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alpheus, and Lebbeus, whose surname was Thaddeus; Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him."-Matt. x, 2-4.
In the other two Gospels, the seventh and eighth names occur in a different order,-Philip and Bartholomew, Matthew and Thomas,-where the distinctive title, the publican, is also wanting. The whole list is composed of six pairs of names, the order of which seems to have been determined by the order of their call, whether to be disciples or apostles. Matthew places his own name second in the pair to which it belongs, and adds the offensive epithet, the publican. Mark and Luke, on the contrary, place Matthew's name before that of his comrade, and withhold the title which he himself has added, in a feeling of humility. This minute difference naturally explained by the modesty of the evangelist, and thus becomes a pledge for the genuineness of the whole Gospel where it appears.
The four Gospels, without any direct assertion, lead us to the same conclusion, that Joseph was dead before our Lord's ministry began. This will appear by collating the passages.
"And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there. And both Jesus was called, and his
disciples, to the marriage. After this he went down to Capernaum, he, and his mother, and his brethren, and his disciples; and they continued there not many days."-John ii, 1, 2, 12. his mother and his brethren stood without, "While he yet talked to the people, behold, desiring to speak with him. Then one said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with thee.
But he answered and said unto him that told him, Who is my mother? and who are my brethren ?"-Matt. xii, 46-48.
"Is not this the carpenter's son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas? and his sisters, are they not all with us?"-Matt. xiii, 55, 56.
"There came then his brethren and his
The meaning of the definite article in this passage is so far from being evident, that our translators have omitted it entirely. No ship has been mentioned in this context to which it can be referred. How, then, can the peculiar expression be accounted for?
ness, depending merely on the insertion of the article, is so much the more unsuspicious and complete.
In each Gospel an account is given of the miracle of the five thousand. We are told, also, in every case, that the disciples took up twelve baskets of fragments. Matt. xiv, 20; Mark vi, 43; Luke ix, 17; John vi, 13. In every Gospel, also, these baskets are termed cophini, (δώδεκα κοφίνους πλήρεις.)
The similar miracle of the four thousand is recorded only by St. Matthew and St. Mark, who state that the disciples took up seven baskets of fragments. Here, however, a different term is employed, and in each Gospel the baskets are called spyrides. Matt. xv, 37; Mark viii, 8, (éntà ovpídas.)
Now, it is remarkable that, when our Saviour rebukes his disciples after crossing from Dalmanutha, the same distinction is accurately observed. Matt. xvi, 9, 10; Mark viii, 19–21.
On turning to the Gospel of St. Mark, not in the parallel passage, but somewhat earlier, we meet with a simple explanation in these words: "And he spake to his disciples, that a small ship should wait on him, because of the multitude, lest they should throng him."—(iii, 9.) It is plain that this ship or boat, provided expressly for such a purpose, would be familiar to the thoughts of the apostle, and hence we may explain the force of the phrase," He entered into the ship and sat."
The same explanation will equally apply to Matt. xiv, 22, where the same expression recurs: "And straightway Jesus constrained his disciples to get into the ship, (eis Tò Thoìov,) and to go before him unto the other side, while he sent the multitudes away."
"Do ye not yet understand, neither remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many baskets ye took up? (πόσους κοφίνους 2úßETE;) Neither the seven loaves of the four thousand, and how many baskets (onvpidas) ye took up?"
"When I brake the five loaves among five thousand, how many baskets (kopívovç) full of fragments took ye up? They say unto him, Twelve. And when the seven among four thousand, how many baskets (σrvpidaç) full of fragments took ye up? And they said, Seven. And he said unto them, How is it that ye do not understand?"
From the word oñvρíç being used, (Acts ix, 25,) where Paul was let down in a basket by the wall of Damascus, it is natural to infer that it denotes baskets of a large size. The cophini, being twelve, might perhaps be the provision-baskets of the apostles. But whatever was the exact nature of the distinction, the constant mention of cophini in reference to one miracle, and of spyrides in connection with the other, is a minute and striking evidence of historical reality, and proves how the details of each event were fixed in the memory of the apostles.
"When Jesus then lifted up his eyes, and saw a great company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence shall we buy bread that these may eat? (And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew what he would do.)
This coincidence, from its very minute- Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth
of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little."-John vi, 5-7.
This apostle is never once named, in the first three Gospels, as having any special question put to him, or taking part in the conversation of our Lord, and only once beside in the Gospel of St. John. Why should the question now be addressed to him rather than the others? The passage itself offers no key to the incident, and we might readily suppose that it was an accidental circumstance.
place, and the other the usual abode. Hence the meaning seems to be, that Philip, though a native of Capernaum, was an inhabitant of Bethsaida. It is thus explained why our Lord should address the inquiry to him rather than the others. They were in a desert place belonging to Bethsaida; and hence Philip was more likely than any of the rest to know where a supply of provisions might possibly be found.
One doubt, however, still remains. There were two Bethsaidas near the Sea of Tiberias; some have even supposed a third. For this last opinion, however, there is no evidence, and it has arisen only from a misconstruction of this very passage. Many have thought that the scene of the miracle was Bethsaida-Julias, to the northeast of the lake. If so, the coincidence would be deceptive, since Philip belonged to Bethsaida of Galilee. John xii, 21.
Let us turn to St. Luke ix, 10, where the same miracle is recorded, and we find this further circumstance mentioned, which fixes the scene of the miracle: "And he took them, and went aside privately into a desert place, belonging to the city called Bethsaida." The miracle is then said to have been wrought at the close of that very day.
The surprise of the people at not finding Jesus is easily explained, since they saw that he had not entered the ship, and no
If now we turn once more to St. John's Gospel, we find in the first chapter this passing intimation: "Now Philip was of Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter." Two different prepositions are here used, one of which seems to denote the birth-other vessel was near, until the arrival of the other boats from Tiberias, early the next morning. But why should they expect the disciples to be there, whom they had seen embark the evening before? An answer is found in St. Mark's Gospel. When Jesus came to them in the fourth watch, "he saw them toiling in rowing; for the wind was contrary." With a stormy and adverse wind, that lasted until three or four in the morning, it was very natural to suppose that the disciples would have put back again, and be found along with Jesus on the eastern shore.
There are conclusive reasons which forbid us to place the scene in the neighborhood of Julias. The suburbs of one of the largest cities near the lake would be ill suited for the purpose of retirement. The course of the disciples on their return is also inconsistent with such a view of the locality. They crossed over toward Bethsaida, while the route from Julias to
Capernaum would not bring them near to
One easy supposition removes all difficulty, and maintains the reality of the coincidence. Capernaum, Bethsaida, Chorazin, were fishing towns on the west of the lake, and would very likely have separate districts belonging to them on the opposite side, for the convenience of the crews in their frequent short voyages across the lake. If the miracle occurred in such a district belonging to Bethsaida of Galilee, and lying opposite to it on the further side of the lake, the whole becomes consistent and natural; and the appeal to Philip, as an inhabitant of Bethsaida, and acquainted with its localities, retains its strict propriety.
"When the people therefore saw that Jesus was not there, neither his disciples, they also took shipping, and came to Capernaum, seeking for Jesus." John vi, 24.
THE GENDER OF MYSTERIES.-There is not a mystery in creation, the symbol or practical invention for meanings abstruse, recondite, and incomprehensible, which is not represented by the female gender. There is the Sphinx, and the Enigma, and the Chimera, and Isis, whose vail no man had ever lifted-they were all ladies, every one of them. And so was Proserpine and Hecate, who was one thing by night and another by day. The Sibyls were females, and so were the Gorgons, the Harpies, the Furies, the Fates, and the Teutonic Valkyrs, Norniss; and, in short, all representations of ideas, obscure, inscrutable, and portentous, are nouns feminine.
state of dubiety and suspense as to the side on which truth lay: according to the other, He-the infinite Creator-appears engaged in a kind of trial of strength, a
BY REV. DR. WARDLAW.
SET out with avowing my full convic- contest of power, real strength, real power,
THE WONDERS OF THE EGYPTIAN MAGICIANS.
Jambres, and their associates, there was no reality of miracle—nothing that required the interposition of either divine or Satanic agency-nothing but what came within the scope of human power and dexterity of deception. This is the position which, with Farmer and some other writers, I unhesitatingly take up; and I hope, without much difficulty, to satisfy the reader of its correctness.
1. I begin, then, by calling to his remembrance one general fact, namely, that the performances of the magicians went only a certain length; that, having succeeded thus far, they stopped and gave in, acknowledging their inability to go farther, and we then hear no more of their attempts. Now, this single fact, independently, for the present, of the cause of their stopping, which may by-and-by appear, renders it, in no small degree, previously probable that there was in the case nothing superhuman or preternatural; but simply a power of deception which succeeded to a certain extent, and then felt itself baffled. Had the power been supernatural, and its doings realities, there seems nothing, at the particular point where they did stop, to account for their so stopping. We shall see, on the other hand, how naturally their stopping is accounted for on what we believe to be the true hypothesis.
2. The supposition of real miracle on the side of the magicians, as well as on that of Moses and Aaron, involves in itself ideas too monstrous to admit of my being able to regard them, I do not say merely as probable, but as morally possible. Of those who hold the wonders to have been real, they are by some ascribed to the agency of God himself, and by others to that of Satan. Now just look at each hypothesis. According to the former, the great God is represented as for a time alternately contradicting himself; affirming and denying, attesting and disproving the same thing; putting forth his power, now on the side of truth, and now on that of error; and thus, by his own authority, accredited by his own divine seal, keeping the minds of his intelligent creatures in a
trial in which, for a while, it remains dubious which of the two has the mastery; nay, in which, in the first step at least, Satan has clearly the advantage. Now to me, I confess, it appears that we ought to be prepared to accept almost any hypothesis which promised to free us from suppositions so unworthy and revolting! If the magicians really converted their rods into living serpents, the first miracle, let it be remembered, is a miracle of creation
of instantaneous creation; and, were there any room for comparison in the case of creative power, (to which, as formerly remarked, the production of a world is as easy as the production of an atom,) the amount of the miracle was on the side of the magicians in the ratio of their number, whatever we may fancy it to have been to one. And the way in which this objection to their hypothesis has been disposed of by the abettors of the reality of the transformation in the one case as well as in the other, has ever, confess, appeared to me to have more of the ludicrous in it than, in what relates to sacred things,
am fond of allowing my mind to dwell upon. It is very true, it has been said, that the rods of the magicians were as really as that of Moses turned into serpents; but then the serpent that had come of the rod of Moses settled the controversy on the right side, by swallowing up all the rest! As if the actual change of lifeless bits of wood into real living serpents were not a miracle incomparably greater than, after they had been produced, one of them devouring the others! How many there were of the rods of the magicians, we have no means of ascertaining. We are sure of two, those of "Jannes and Jambres," who are mentioned by Paul as having "withstood Moses;" but there might be, and probably were more, (perhaps not a few more, for it is said "they cast down every man his rod,") of whom these were the chief. I do not deny, be it observed, that the swallowing up of the other serpents by that of Moses was a settling of the point in dispute, but not in the way of determining the question of superiority between the miracles on the
one side and those on the other, on the supposition of both being equally real; but by the way of determining the reality of the one and the juggling legerdemain of the other. But, in truth, there is no room for hypothesis in the matter. A brief glance at the facts of the case may suffice to show its true character. Observe, then,
3. In the narrative it is repeatedly said, that "the magicians did so with their enchantments." The phrase has by some been interpreted as meaning that they actually and substantially did the same thing. But it has no such meaning. It means no more than that they did it in like manner; that they effected a resemblance; and such a resemblance as proved sufficient to satisfy the minds of Pharaoh and his servants, which were abundantly predisposed to be satisfied, and so to harden their hearts, and keep them from yielding what they were naturally so loath to yield. Even had the expression been that they did the thing, we are all sufficiently aware how common it is, when we are speaking of the tricks of jugglers, to describe them as doing what they so palpably appear to do. But, if any should shake their heads in doubt upon this point, we have in reserve a thorough settler for it. Just look at one passage: "And the magicians did so with their enchantments, to bring forth lice; but they could not." Exod. viii, 18. This is enough surely. In this occurrence of it, the phrase means even less than we have been interpreting it to mean. We have interpreted it as meaning their producing a resemblance; but this occurrence of it does not go even thus far, but signifies their attempting to produce a resemblance and failing. Surely no proof can be more complete than this, that the phrase "they did so," does not mean their actually effecting the same thing: "they did so, but they could not ;" that is, they tried, but did not succeed. The attempt, therefore, on their part, was not an attempt to do the very thing they saw done, but to produce such a resemblance to it as might satisfy those whom they well knew to be far from hard of conviction. Then observe further
by etymologists. But in either the one or the other of its two principal derivationsthe one from a root signifying to hide, the other from a root signifying to dazzle-it is expressive of those arts by which, on the one hand, they contrived to hide or conceal, or those by which, on the other, they endeavored to dazzle ; hiding their tricks from the eyes of spectators, or deceiving their vision by a glare thrown over it for the purpose, or by any other deceptive process. When, therefore, it is alleged that they are represented, in the Bible narrative, as doing the very same things with Moses the allegation is not true. All that is said is, that they did in like sort, and that they did so "with their enchantments" or juggleries. It has been said-If these things were done by anything of the nature of juggling or legerdemain, how comes it that Moses has given no hint of it? No hint of it! we reply: why he has expressly, in so many words, "said it over and over and over again. Reflect now
5. How exactly and satisfactorily the view we thus take of the case accords with all the facts.
4. That no doubt might be left about the real meaning, it is uniformly added, "The magicians did so with their enchantments." This ought to be decisive. The original term has been variously derived
In the first place, there was nothing done that, to any who are at all acquainted with the amazing arts of such professors of necromancy, and magic, and sleight of hand, will be regarded as at all beyond belief. For example, take the first miracle. Moses simply casts down his rod before Pharaoh, and it becomes a serpent. A message is sent by the king for the magicians. We cannot doubt that, when they got the message, they got, at the same time, intelligence of what had been done by Moses, and of the design for which they were wanted. They were thus put upon the alert. They had time to make the necessary preparations for counterfeiting the miracle. And when they made their appearance, it is said of them that "they did in like manner with their enchantments." Moses had used no enchantments, no covered arts. They did. And by what is said to be no unusual trick with sleight-of-hand practitioners in eastern countries to this day, they produced the appearance of the same transformation; when, in point of fact, instead of real transformation, there was nothing more than a clever undiscernible substitution.
In the East this trick is often effected by