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ii. 2. grow thereby.
iii. 8. courteous. 20. once waited. iv. 14. of glory.
2 Pet. ii. 2. permicious ways: 18. clean. iii. 3. scoffers.
I Joh. ii. 23. be that acknowledgeth the Son, bath the Father also.
iv. 3. that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh.
I Joh. v. 7, 8. in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth.
13. that believe on the name of the Son of God.
and that ye may
Jude 4. God.
both now and
If any of our readers are inexperienced in these researches, they may be surprised at the number of words and clauses rejected as spurious. We assure them, that these rejections are
made upon clear evidence. Indeed Griesbach has generally leaned in this respect to the side of caution. Additions to the original text have arisen principally from three causes.
1. Necessary supplements in the first sentence of Lessons detached from the Gospels, &c. to be read in the public service of the church. The practice of appointing lessons, still happily retained in our national church, was derived from the Jewish synagogues, and is of the most venerable antiquity among Christians. It is easy to conceive how these introductory supplements found their way from the Lectionaries into many copies of the N. T. Examples; Matt. viii. 5. Luke x, 22. Acts iii. 11.
2. The transcribers frequently incorporated clauses from parallel passages in other parts of Scripture. Examples; Matt. xx. 22. from Mark x. 38, 39.-Luke xi. 2—4, from Matt.vi. 913.-xvi. 36, from Matt. xxiv. 40.-Acts ix. 5, 6, from xxvi, 14.-1 Cor. x. 28, from v. 26.-xi. 24, from Matt. xxvi. 26, from which also Qayer has crept into the text of Mark. 1 Tim. i. 4. and Jude 25, from Rom. xiv. 27. Heb. xii. 20, from Exod. xix. 13.-1 Joh. iv. 3, from v. 2.
3. Glosses, or marginal annotations, originally added for the exposition of difficult or elliptical passages, and occasionally for the introduction of a popular notion, or a favourite interpretation, were sometimes assumed into the body of the text, through the ignorance, or the over-doing zeal, of copyists. Examples: Matt. xxvii. 35. Mark iv. 24. John v. 3, 4. xi. 41. Acts viii. 37. Rom. xi. 6. 1 Cor. vi. 20. vii. 5. Gal.
Matt. vi. 13. There can be no reasonable doubt that this doxology was introduced from the Liturgies of the ancient Greek church. It is wanting in the best and most venerable MSS., though the majority as to mere number have it. The Alexandrine and the Ephrem have lost several leaves which include the place. The Coptic, the Vulgate, and three Arabic versions want it ; the other ancient versious have it. Nonc of the Latin fathers acknowledge it. Of the Greek, Origen, Cyril of Jerusalem, Gregory Nyssene, and Maximus, have written expositions of the Lord's Prayer, in which they omit this doxology. Cæsarius (A. D. 364.) expressly adduces it as
liturgical formulary. It is less easy to account for the absence of the clauses omitted by Luke: but the instances are numerous, in which the same discourse of our Lord is given more fully in one evangelist, and more concisely in another. The evidence against them does not, however, appear to us quite decisive.
Matt. xix. 17. This is a remarkable alteration, but it stands upon good authority. The common reading might originate in a gloss of some one, who conceived our Lord's answer to relate to the title given him, rather than to the question it
self. Is it supposable, that He, who "knew what was in man," perceived the mind of this young ruler to be tinctured with Grecian literature, and to be perplexed with the great question of the philosophic sects? Admitting this, the reply is beautifully appropriate. Be it also observed, that our blessed Saviour's words are delicately, but not obscurely, calculated to direct the inquirer to HIMSELF as the ΕΙΣ ΑΓΑΘΟΣ.
Acts ii. 30. This clause is rejected by a powerful body of evidence, of all the three kinds. Newcome has very improperly supplied "successors;" which the I. V. has not corrected, though the sense manifestly requires a singular object. The spurious clause has the air of a gloss, to fill up the ellipsis: but the sense is equally plain, and the impression much stronger, without it.
Acts xiii. 33. Anciently, the psalm now numbered the 1st. was considered as a kind of proem to the whole collection, and the numeration commenced with the following one. It is the preferable reading: but it may be better to retain the other in modern translations, since it is a mere mark of reference.
Acts xv. 18, 19. The weight of evidence is against this clause: and, in the copies which have the fuller reading, it appears in so many forms as to shew that the coinmon one was framed out of several glosses.
Fph. iii. 9. The words are wanting in the Alexandrine, Vatican, phrem, Germost, Sangermancusis, and Trueria. nus; that is, in al the best MS. and in several intenor: in every ancient version, except the Slavonic and Gothic, and in a most commanding list of father...
1 Joh. ii. 23. It is curious, that in King James's version this large clause is printed as spurious, or as a mere supplement; though it stands upon the highest ground of evidence.
There are three passages, to the readings of which theological writers have annexed peculiar importance, since they have been often urged in the controversy on the Deity of our Lord Jesus Christ. To these, therefore, in pursuance of our promise, we shall pay a particular attention. It would be affronting our readers, to remind them of the fallacy and extreme danger of that reasoning, which, on any question, would assume à priori what ought to be the reading of a scriptural passage, and thus would prescribe to the divine word, instead of implicitly receiving lessons from it. We shall see, in the sequel, whether the adversaries of our Lord's Deity have any reason for triumph, or its friends for alarm.
Acts xx. 28. There are no fewer than six various readings to the third clause of this verse.
1.---τὴν ἐκκλησίαν τοῦ Χριστοῦ,——the church of Christ;-2.—Θεοῦ, -God;-3.-Kupicu so, the Lord God;-4.-sou xal Kupiou, -the God and Lord ;-5.-Kuglov xal où,-the Lord and God; 6.-Kugisu,-the Lord.
1. Xero. No Greek MSS.; but the ancient Syriac v. and the Arabic of Erpenius's ed. Origen probably, and a few later and inferior fathers. A Synod (held under popish influence) of the Malabar Christians, in 1599, says, that the Nestoriaus introduced this reading instigante diabolo.
2. Oo, the common reading. MSS. in 5 ascertained; in 9 conjectured: but if No. 56 of Wetst! and Griesb. be esteemed the representative of four Medicean, we must say 12; and in 1 (No. 66. W. and G.) doubtful from the obliteration of the writing. None of these MSS. are older than the xith century, most of them more modern, and all except one of very inferior value. The united evidence of them all is but of small weight, or more accurately speaking, of none at all, except so far as they agree with more ancient authorities. Versions: the modern text of Vulgate, and the Philoxenian Syriac, but Lord in the margin.-Fathers: Epiphanius, Ambrose, Cassiodorus, Fulgentius, Bede, and a few others inferior. Griesbach has Theophilus of Antioch, but we appre
hend it is a mistake.
3. Kugiou to. One MS, of the xiith century; and the Arabic v. in the Paris and London Polyglotts, a very faulty version, not probably older than the xiiith century.
4. Θεοῦ καὶ Κυρίου. One MS. an apograph in the xvith century, by James Faber of Daventer, from one written in
5. Kupiou xal Orou. One Uncial MS. (Passionei) assigned by Bianchini to the viiith, and by Montfaucon to the ixth century; and 46 more recent MSS. which form the majority of mere number, but none of them are among the most correct and authoritative. The Slavonic version made in the ixth century. Of the fathers, only Theophylact, and the reading in him very questionable.
6. Kupiou. MSS. Four Uncial, viz. the Alexandrine, the Cambridge (Beza), the Ephrem, and the Laudian 3; which are all the most ancient MSS. of the Acts, except the Vatican, an accurate collation of which for the Acts and Epistles is yet a desideratum. Six more recent MSS. but which Griesbach esteems as among the best and most independent. Versions: the old Latin, the Coptic of Sais, the Armenian, the margin of the Philox. Syriac, aud probably the Ethiopic. Fathers: Irenæus, Const. Apost. Eusebius, Athanasius, Chrysostom, Jerome, Augustine, and several besides.
On seriously weighing all the evidence, every impartial
mind, we conceive, will admit that the last has the fairest claim to acceptance as the genuine reading. If any, from a theological predilection, should feel reluctant to this admission, however supported by proof, we recommend to their serious meditation the following passage of Athanasius: as, also, the whole treatise from which it is taken, the design of which is to guard against a confusion of the two natures in the person of Christ. We lament that modern preachers and hymn-writers have gone so far in violating this caution. "The scriptures have in no place delivered to us the expression blood of God, separate from the human nature (xa σagnòs), or that God, through the human nature, suffered and rose again; such audacious phrases belong to the Arians." Athan. contra Apollinar. ii. 14.
The second remarkable text, to which we have alluded, is 1 Tim. iii. 16. where the question is, whether we ought to read Θεὸς, ὃς, or δ.
1. s is the reading of almost all the Greek MSS. in small letters, i. e. those whose antiquity does not reach higher than the xth century. Versions: the Slavonic and the Arabic of the Polyglott. Fathers: Chrysostom, Theodoret, John of Damascus, Ecumenius, and Theophylact: one or two others of the Greek fathers have been adduced, but liable to strong doubt.
2. Os is the reading of the Alexandrine*, the Ephrem, the Augiensis, and the Boernerianus. The Vatican, the Sangermanensis, and the Coislinianus, are mutilated at this place. These are all the existing Uncial MSS. of the Epistles of Paul,
*It is well known that it has been a matter of very anxious dispute, whether OC or C (the contraction in all the most ancient MSS. for eòs) is the original reading of the Alexandrine. It is confessed, on all hands, that the two cross strokes which now appear in the MS. are the addition of a modern pen. The question is, Were they added without any authority in the MS. itself? Or, with the honest intention of preserving from irrecoverable loss a point and a cross-stroke, which had proceeded from the first hand, but were in a state of evanescence? All the aids of eye-sight, sunshine, and microscopes, have been employed to discover the vestiges of the primeval point and cross-stroke: but no decisive result has been obtained. Some diligent inspectors thought they could perceive the faint remains others, as diligent and eagle-eyed, protested that they could not discover any such traces: and even the same observer has at one time fancied he saw them, and at another time has been unable to recover the vision. See Wetstein, Berriman, Owen in Bowyer's Conj. and particularly Woide's valuable preface with the notes of Spohn. Our own opinion is, that the scale turns in favour of OC. The vellum at this passage is said to be now so much rubbed and worn by repeated examination, that no future inspection can be of much avail towards determining the point at issue.