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the compound signified a priest; and the latter the Sun. It was expressed NETEPH, Petephre, by the authors of the Coptic ' version ; and Ilereoen isgevs in the time of the Greek version, and yao yeu Pytah phry in the days of Moses. I have thought proper to state these things; as we may from hence perceive the purport of the injunction given to 'Moses, and explain those remarkable words---I am that I am; and I am hath sent thee,

Some farther Considerations upon these Words:

It is remarkable, that the Samaritan version accords implicitly with the original in this instance, and it is closely copied in the Vulgate, where the passage is rendered---Ego sum, qui sum. But the Greek translation differs in the mode of expression, and instead of--- Eyw Eipes, ós Ellis; which would afford the literal purport, we meet with---Eyw Esthese ó 1v. How came the authors of this yersion so industriously to vary from others? I answer; because they were Jews of Egypt, and knew the true object alluded to. And, as the Egyptian term ons, the same as Ens, corresponded with the like word in Greek, they have preserved it in their translation, as from this correspondence of terms, they could give the true meaning of the original. In consequence of this, instead of Εγω ειμι, ος ειμι, which would have been the obvious interpretation of I am that I am, they render it---Eyw Elui ó Ny. I am the Ens, the truly existing being ; the living God. And that we might not mistake the meaning of the term Nv, used by the Seventy, and also by the Platonists, many learned persons have been at the pains further to explain it, and to shew, that by On was signified Ens Entium, the Being of Being's, the self-existent God. Hence Hesychius defines ó Sav, by Jos asi {wv, Utagn xav. God, who lives for ever; that exists everlastingly. We find the like in Suidas. 'O 12v, o ani wy, 80s anwr. By On is denoted, the God

..? See Coptic Lexicon, p. 157. There were two words in the ancient Egyptian language, which denoted a priest JETE and 20NT-They were probably two departments in the same office of priesthood : but their precise meaning cannot be now ascertained.

This person is said to be Pete-phre, Cohen On; that is, a priest of the Sun, who officiated at the city on, to distinguish him from a priest of the same order who might be of Moph, Theba, or any other place.

2 Genesis, ch. xli. ver. 45. and ver. 50.

"Exodus iii. 14.

that lives for ever, whom we acknowledge for our particular deity. The learned Alberti, in his notes to Hesychius, quotes from a manuscript Lexicon a passage to the same purpose. O Ων, ο ζων, ο υπαρχων, ο αει ων· τετεςι θεος. By this term is meant the Being who lives and exists; the Being who lives for ever; that is, God. It is therefore plain, that the purport of this Egyptian word, when explained by the Grecians, related uniformly to life, and the God of life, the self-existing being. We have seen that the justness of these interpretations is confirmed by the Coptic. . The same is observable of the ro ov of Plato, which was borrowed from the same source. Annxode gode en Αιγυπτω τον Θεον τω Μωυση ειρηκεναι, Εγώ είμι και Nu, gyro, óti ou supiou ovoud ÉQUT8 ó 0805 mpos avrov 01- They are the words of Justin Martyr', who says, that Plato learnt in Egypt, that the deity represented himself to Moses under the character of ó 12v, or the living God; and that Plato knew it was not a proper name: by which is intimated, that he rendered it as

? Just. Martyr. Cohort. p. 21. c. * By the ancient philosophers, the deity was stiled to év ; and it was said - IO v texta. Plato changed the term to 76 oy, as we learn from Simplicius, Plotinus, and others.

an attribute, and described the cause of all things by his self-existence.' He mentions farther', that the different manner of expressing the term, which was both Or and Nv, amounted to little ; as both were equally apposite. 'O μεν γαρ Μωυσης ο ων εφη, ο δε Πλατων το ον· εκατερον δε των ειρημένων των αει οντί Θεω προσήκειν Caretas. For Moses expresses the word w, and Plato to ov : but each of the terms appear to be truly applicable to the living God, who alone may be said to exist. Eusebius, Cyril, Augustine, and many other writers suppose, that Plato got his intelligence in Egypt: and I think there can be no doubt of it. But they go farther, and think, that he obtained it from the history of Moses; which does not appear probable. They seem all to have imagined, that he got his information from the words Eyw slun á svg I am He that is, i. e. the living God: which is a portion from the Greek of the Septuagint. But they did not consider, that this version was not made till after the death of Plato. He could not have had any light from hence. In short hie borrowed his knowledge of the term Oy from the same fountain from whence the authors of the Septuagint afterwards borrowed; which was from the natives

"Just. Martyr. Cohort. p. 23. C.

of Egypt. He resided three years at Heliopolis, the very place called On, or City of the Sun: and was very conversant with the priests of the place, the most intelligent of any in the whole' nation. He could not fail of learning the purport of the name ; and was certainly informed, that the city of On was denominated from the self-existent being; and that the temple of On was properly the sanctuary of the living God, though the title was abused, and conferred upon Osiris, the Sun. Hence. Plato, in his Inquiry concerning the Nature of the Supreme Being, asks, Toto Ov Mev. Qel; ZEVEON ds. 8x exov. Explain to me that deity On, which ever IS, and who never knew beginning nor production? In this, and all other instances to the same purpose, he alludes to the Egyptian term, which signified life and being.

A farther Consideration.

It may be proper to remark, that, when Moses was directed to make known to the Is

"The people of Heliopolis were particularly famous for their knowledge. 'O. 'HASTORT&o Arquitwy doysaptator. Herod. 1. 2. c. 3. p. 104.

* In Timæo, vol. 3. p. 27.

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