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Julian Pe

4 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with Cana, in riod, 4740.

? mine hour is not yet come.

Galilee. Vulgarfra, 27.

which at present are daily exhibited, were from this moment
to cease, and another uniform course of events were to demon.
strate in another manner the power of God, then it would be,
that the experience of one generation would be contrary to the
testimony of that wbich preceded it. But this experience would
not falsify the testimony of the former generation. So also,
we are no longer witnesses of the unusual miracles of God, yet
we should act very irrationally to reject them, and to disbelieve
them on that account, since they are transmitted to us by the
united concurrent testimony of the then existing generation of
credible and unprejudiced witnesses.

The Jews, as well as others who believe in the authenticity
of the Old Testament, and receive it as a divine revelation,
declare their conviction of the certainty that the public miracles
rocorded therein are true, principally for the six following

1. The object of the miracles was worthy of its divine author.
2. They were publicly and instantaneously performed.

3. They appealed to the senses in such manner, that men
might judge of their truth.

4. They were independent of second causes.

5. Public monuments were set up, and outward actions per. formed to commemorate them.

6. And this was done at the very time when the events took place, and continued afterwards without interruption,

The miracles of Moses, of Elias, and others recorded in the Old Testament, may be divided into those of a private and public nature. Each of which are to be received on different grounds, according to the object proposed. The public miracles were designed to impress a whole tribe, or nation, or large body of men, with the conviction of a truth, or to confirm them in the profession of the true faith, in the days of indifference, apostacy, and idolatry-those of a more private nature were designed to convince individuals, or smaller bodies of men, of the same truths; by relieving human wants, or sufferings, by raising the dead, or in some cases by inflicting punishment, thereby demonstrating the divine mission of the prophet, and the importance and truth of all that he was appointed to teach.

1. Do the Jews believe in the miracles which were wrought by Moses to deliver the Israelites from Egyptian slavery, because it was an object worthy of the Divine Being to save his people at the time when the prediction of bis servant had announced their release! How much more worthy of the divine goodness was that greater deliverance of the descendants of the same Israelites from a worse bondage than that of Egypt, from the captivity of sin and death.

2. Were the miracles of Moses which effected this deliverance publicly and instantaneonsly performed-was dark ness brought upon the land were the fruits of the ground destroyed – was the river changed into blood-and the Red Sea eventually opened for their rescue-and were all these things publicly and instantaneously performed ! Equally wonderful was the darkness at the crueifixion of Christ-the creation of bread in the hands of the five, or the seven thousand-and, above all these, the publie resurrection of the dead to life.

3. Could the senses of the people perceive and know, and judge of the miracles of Moses and of Elias ? So was the appeal made by Christ to the scrutinizing examination of his thronging auditors.

Sulian Pe- 5 His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he Cana, ia riod, 4740. saith unto you, do it.

Galilee. Vulgar Æra, 27.

4. Were the accumulations of the waves ofthe sea, as the gathering waters on each side of the passing Israelites rose in heaps, instead of smoothly proceeding on their course, evidently independant of second causes : so were the miracles of Christ, when he rose from his slumber in the endangered vessel at the entreaties of his terrified disciples, to rebuke the raging of the wind, and the roaring of the sea, and command the elements to subside into a calm. What human power could have enabled Moses to divide the sea, or Joshua to roll back the tide of Jordan, or Elijah to part the river and go through dry shod, or Christ to walk himself, and to enable Peter to walk on the bosom of the deep. They were the manifestations of tho providence of the same God, watchful over the same people. “He that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep."

5. Were public monuments set up, or outward actions performed, to celebrate the miracles that delivered Israel from Egypt; was the Passover appointed as a memorial for ever? Equally is it demonstrable that the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper was ordained as continual remembrance of the sacrifice of the death of Christ, and likewise the Christian Sabbath for a testimony of his resurrection-and, to come to the sixth criterion of public miracles, if the Passover was instituted at the time when the Exodus took place, to be continued from that day to the time of the true Pascal Lamb, we also, who glory in the name of Christians, can demonstrate, by the most indisputable authority, that the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper was insti. tuted but a few bours before the death of our beloved master, and has ever, from that period, been commemorated by his followers, in remembrance of his precious death, until his coming again. And we can further demonstrate that the Christian Sabbath has been set apart for the celebration of Christ's resurrection, from the time when he appeared to his disciples to assure them that he had risen from the dead.

Let us refer also to lesser circumstances, and compare tho character of the witnesses who bave testified the truth of these miracles, under the separate dispensations: the most decided impugner of the truths of Christianity, wlio receives the Old Testament, will be satisfied with the evidence in favour of our sacred faith. In whatever point of view we consider these witnesses, we shall find them distinguished by the same cbaracteristics. Their motives, circumstances, and conduct, wonderfully correspond. It appears graciously designed by the one Jehovah, the God of the Jews and of the Christians, that the whole system of Revelation should be established on the same evidence-that if one was worthy of faith and acceptance, the other was equally so.

Was Moses the legislator of his people, appointing for their government a new code of laws; so also was Christ the great Jawgiver of his people, to whom he gave a more perfect law, exacting a more spiritual and exemplary obedience. Was Isaiah the companion of the princes of Israel, and of the blood royal, as the Jewish traditions assert—the Evangelist St. John was of the family of the high priest, and St. Paul was educated at the feet of Gamaliel, with the principal members of the Sanhedrim, and the most learned of the Pharisees and Sadducees of his day. Il Amos was an ignorant and obscure man, “ neither a prophet, nor a prophet's son,” but a herdman, and a gatherer of sycamore fruit, it cannot be necessary to shew that the majority of


Julian Pe- 6 And there were set there six waterpots of stone, after Cana, in Pod, 474... the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two Galilee.

, 27.

or three firkins a-piece.

the twelve apostles were equally unlearned; and so much with-
out pretension, that when the high priests desir

to repress
the incipient dawning of Christianity, they permitted them
to remain at Jerusalem, as too inferior, both in rank and
attainments, to excite either apprehensiou or suspicion. If the
testimonies of Isaiah and Amos be received, and thereby, as a
necessary consequence, demonstrate the divine origin of the
Old Testament,-what reason can be assigned why St. John and
St. Paul, and the Apostles, should not be equally regarded as
credible witnesses to the truth of Christianity.

Are the miracles of Moses to be depended upon, because of the numbers who witnessed them; the miracles of Christ also were wrought before thousands of the people; and the accounts of those miracles were published while the eye-witnesses were still alive, and while many of these witnesses were suffering persecution in support of the facts recorded. If the ancient Jews are not to be suspected in uniting in a forgery to prove the truth of the miracles of Moses, why should their descendants be supposed less scrupulous; and why should they not be equally credited when they assert the truth of the miracles of Christ.

Was Moses brought before Pharaoh-or Daniel before Darius -or the three children before Nebuchadnezzar, to appeal by the miracles that evidenced the superiority of Jehovah, to all the wise, and learned, and poble, of their own day, and to confirm the truth of their religion for ever-so was Christ brought before Herod-before the Roman Governor-and the assembly of the Priests, who had heard of his mighty deeds. It was in the presence of the rulers of the people that Christ raised the dead, and healed the sick, and created new limbs to the maimed, while they, hating his doctrine, were keenly and maliciously intent upon all his actions, to denounce him as an enthusiast, or to prove him an impostor. St. Paul struck the sorcerer with blindness at the tribunal of Paulus, and St. Peter restored the lame man, who was known to all the heads of the Priests, and the rulers of Israel.

Did Moses work his miracles in that place where detection would have been the most easy-so did Christ when he multiplied bread in the wilderness, which produced only roots and herbs, the scanty provision of nature. Did the ancient Prophets so entirely and unanimously agree with each other, that no contradiction whatever is to be found between themso neither can any variation of doctrine be discovered between the testimonies of the Evangelists and the writers of the Epistles. Was Isaiah tortured with the saw, and Jeremiah cast into prison, so also were the Apostles, and first Martyrs, crucified, stoned, imprisoned, or otherwise persecuted. If we believe, therefore, the writers of the Old Testament, the same laws of reasoning and judgment require that we should give equal credence to those of the New Testament. Of both it may be justly asked,

Why should men, of various age and parts,
Weave such agreeing truths, or how or why
Should all conspire to cheat us with a lie-
Unasked their pains, unbeeded their advice,
Starving their pains, and Martyrdom their price.”

Julian Pe. 7 Jesus saith unto them, Fill the water-pots with Cana, in riod, 4740. water. And they filled them up to the brim.

Galilee. Vulgar Æra, 27.

The writers of the New Testament like the writers of the Old, express themselves with the accurate carelessness of truth; no real contradiction exists between them; their deviation is only an additional testimony in their favour, as it proves there could have been no intended deception, where there was no premeditated scheme, not even the reconciliation of apparent differences.

If the representation of this agreement between the writers
of the Old and New Testament be not satisfactory to the Jewish
reader, let him further consider the singular contrast between
his past and present condition.

Unless the Messiah bas really come, and the Jows have de-
spised and crucified him, as we assert, by what means can they
reconcile to themselves the fearful change that has taken place in
their circumstances. Let them tell the Christian for what reason
it is that the sons of Abraham, so long the peculiarly faroured
cbildren of God, who were honoured with miracles, admonished
by prophets, directed by visions, and visited by angels, should,
for so long a period, be permitted to wander over the whole world,
a by-word, and the very scorn of all nations, without a king, a
temple, or a prophet. When their proud and noble city was
destroyed, idolatry had long ceased. They were zealous for
the law-they venerated even the characters in which it was
written, and the parchment on which it was inscribed. The gods
of the Gentiles were abhorred. They ventured even to encounter
the batred of the merciless Caligula, rather than admit an image
into their sacred temple. Jehovab was the God they worshipped,
according to the letter of the law of Moses, with an enthusiastic
adherence to the minutiæ of their difficult and burthensome ri-
tual. The most embarrassing of their appointed ordinances was
their pride and boast. Wherefore, then, has God forgotten to
be gracious ? They have endured, and suffered, and hoped,
and believed, and prayed for mercy, for centuries ; they have
called upon the Jehovah who from the beginning promised
them a Messiah-yet no prophet has appeared-no miracle has
been wrought in their favour. Since the destruction of their
bcloved Jerusalem, which took place forty years after the cruci-
fixion of their Redeemer, they have been scattered over the
face of the whole earth, an astonishment, and a proverb, among
all nations, (Deut. xxviii. 37.) by the command of an over-
ruling Providence, an undeniable evidence of the fulfilment of
prophecy, in their own blindness of heart, and of the truth or
Christianity. Can any cause whatever be assigned for this
standing miracle, this wonderful dispersion, so long, and faith-
fully predicted by their great lawgiver, (Deut. xxviii. 64–68.)
than that which is given by inspiration itself. He came to his
own, and his own received him not; and they remain, as Moses
foretold they should remain, a “sign and a wonder,” till the
day in which they shall say, “ Blessed is he that cometh in the
name of the Lord (c).”

(a) Com. Evan. Sec. Joan. vol. i. p. 14. de vita Joannis privata. (6)
Ceterum non male Chrysostomus-optabat (Maria) et ipsa clarior fieri
per fliam και τάχα τι και ανθρώπινον έπασχε καθάπερ και οι αδελφοί
αυτού, λεγοντες· δείξον σεαυτόν τω κόσμω, βελόμενοι την από των
θαυμάτων δόξαν kaptuoaotat. (c) See the Letter of Mr. Hamilton
to Dr. Herschell, chief Rabbi of the German and Polish Jews in London,
-Horne's Crit. Introd. first edit. vol. i. p. 584. with his references.-

I 2

Julian Pe- 8 And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear Cana, in

Galilee. riod, 4710. unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it. Vulgar Æra, 27.

9 When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was : (but the servants which drew the water knew :) the governor of the feast called the bridegroom,

10 And saith unto him, Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine ; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now.'

11 This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him


Limborch's Amica Collatio cum erud. Jud. 4to. p. 172. where this learned
writer shews that the divine mission of Christ is less dubious than that
of Moses. Quæso nupc: Şi de alterutrius mirabilibus factis dubitari a
quoquam possit, in quem magis alicujus artis, quæ, res non prorsus
veras nec tantas ignaro populo persuasit, cadere possit suspicio ; an in
virum doctum, aulicom; potentem, liberatorem populi e durà servitute,
et omnia pro nuta suo moderantem ; an in pauperculum, contemptam,
doctoribus populi invisum, magistratui exosum, est omni humanâ ope,
ac favore destítntum ? Non solum ea in anctoribus et utriusque reli-
gionis fundatoribus est differentia sed in ipso populo, qui hæc accepit,
et posteris tradidit. Tempore enim Mosis populus diuturnus, et duris-
sima servitute fractus, non poterat non esse rudis, et ignarus valde, et
uti est oppressæ plebis animus, paratior ad quævis magnifica de libera-
toribus suis credenda, et de iis posteris suis majora tradenda ; quam ii,
qui jam libertati assueti, patris institatis imbuti, legi, quam divinam
habebant, addicti, nullo magno beneficio abhoc soo Messiah in præsente
bâo vitâ affecti, nullo mundano splendore, vel fælicitate moti, et di-
versa plane expectantes ; quibus igitur nihil aliud nisi rerum ipsarum
claritas argumento esse potet, et vel ipsi crederent, vel aliis pro veris
narrarent. This is admirably done. The whole work abounds with
eloquence, as well as sound argument. Leslie, in his Preface, ac-
knowledges his obligations to Limborch, and confesses that his work
was principally compiled from the Amica Collatio.
.. 12 A very curious, but too forced and mystical an interpreta-
tion of this miracle, is given by Lampe, in which he endeavours
to shew, that by the bridegroom is meant the governors of the
Jewish Church-the bride is the Jewish Church itself-the
marriage is the Christian dispensation. The failing of the wine
is the departure of the Spirit of God from the Jewish Church,
which bad begun to depart from the purity of the law-thé
mother of our Lord is the heavenly Jerusalem, bringing into the
liberty of the Gospel the children of the Jewish Church ; but
she is reproved for impatience, not knowing the times and the
seasons, or the hour which had not yet come. The water is
changed into wine, that is, prophecy and the law are changed
into the Gospel ; with much more of the same kind.-Lampe,
vol. i. p. 518-520.

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