Page images

Take the following additional examples, snatched at random from among multitudes, as specimens of the author's candour, accuracy, and competency.

'It appears from the contents of this epistle, that, not long after the Galatians had embraced Christianity, a certain Judaizing teacher or false apostle had either crept in or risen up among them, who, to advance his own doctrine, questioned St. Paul's apostolical authority, insinuating that Peter and the apostles of the circumcision were superior to him, and consequently much more to be regarded. It was further insinuated that they never preached against the circumcision of Gentile converts but that it was a doctrine peculiar to Paul, who was only an apostle of men, and had not such extraordinary powers and illumination as had been conferred on the other apostles. The false teacher seems even to have intimated, that St. Paul did himself, secretly and at some times, preach the necessity of circumcision to the Gentile converts; though generally, and at other times, he insisted on the contrary. short, the false apostle was desirous that all Gentile Christians should submit themselves to circumcision, and consequently oblige themselves to observe the whole law of Moses, as if the gospel of Jesus Christ alone were insufficient to justify and save them..


From the expression of St. Paul, in Galatians v. 9, 10, it is probable that this disturbance in the Galatian churches was made by one Judaizing teacher only, and not by several zealots, as some commentators have supposed; and from what is said in chap. vi. 12, 13, it appears that he was a man of immoral character, who acted not from any religious views or motives, but from vain-glory and fear; that he might conciliate the favour of the Jews by increasing the number of proselytes, and so escape the persecutions raised by the unbelieving Jews against St. Paul and those who adhered to his doctrines.'-vol. iv. p. 370.

Dr. Benson writes thus:

'The occasion of the epistle was his having heard that a certain Judaizing Christian, a false apostle, had either crept in or rose up among them, who called in question his [St. Paul's] apostolic authority; insinuating that St. Peter and the apostles of the circumcision were much more to be regarded, and superior to him. That they never preached against the circumcision of the converts from among the idolatrous Gentiles; but that it was a doctrine peculiar to Paul, who was only an apostle of men; and had not such powers and illumination as the other apostles. Nay, he seemeth to have intimated that Paul himself did, secretly, and at some times, preach up the necessity of circumcision to the Gentile converts; though generally and at other times, he insisted upon the contrary. The sum of the matter was, that the false apostle was very desirous to have made all the Gentile Christians submit to be circumcised; and so to have bound themselves to observe the whole law of Moses; as if the gospel of Christ alone and of itself had been insufficient to justify and save them.

That it was but one Judaising Christian who made all that disturbance, appeareth probable to me from what the apostle had said, Gal. v. 9, 10:A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump. I trust in the Lord concerning you that you will not be of a different mind from me; but that he who troubleth you will fall under the condemnation he deserves, whosoever he be.' And he seemeth to have been a man of an immoral character, from what is said, chap. vi. 12, &c., as not acting from religious views and motives; but out of vain-glory and fear, to curry favour with the Jews by increasing the number of proselytes of righte

ousness ; and so escape the persecution which the unbelieving Jews frequently raised against St. Paul and such as adhered to the doctrine which he preached.'-Benson's History of the First Planting of the Christian Religion, vol. ii. pp. 119, 120. London, 1735.

Surely it would only have been fair in Mr. Horne to have written with inverted commas the words which we have quoted from him. The original will be discovered at a glance in Benson. And yet the latter is never mentioned in text or note of the entire section relating to the epistle to the Galatians. Thus the plagiarism is manifest.

'Its [the epistle to the Colossians] genuineness was never disputed.' (vol. iv. p. 380.)

This assertion is contrary to fact. Not to speak of Schleiermacher, who evidently entertained doubts of it, Mayerhoff wrote a treatise to prove it supposititious. See Mayerhoff's ' der Brief an die Kolosser mit vornehmlicher Berücksichtigung der drei Pastoralschreiben geprüft. Berlin, 1838.'

'Father Morin refers it [the Gemara of Jerusalem] to the fifth century.' (vol. ii. p. 417.)

This is incorrect, for Morin refers it to the seventh century. The most probable opinion founded on internal evidence and confirmed by Maimonides is not given by our author, viz., that this Gemara was composed towards the end of the last half of the fourth century.

'The Gemara of Babylon was compiled in the sixth century.' (vol. ii. p. 417.)

This statement also is incorrect. The Babylonian Gemara was begun by R. Asche, who died A. D. 427, and was completed

A. D. 500.

'Again in Exodus xii. 40, we read, the sojourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was four hundred and thirty years. But this is not true, for it was only two hundred and fifteen years, &c.' vol. ii. p. 265.

Here the Hebrew text is perfectly correct, and consequently our English received version. It is true, that the sojourning of the children of Israel was four hundred and thirteen years; and this is what the text states. It is not true, that the Israelites dwelt in Egypt four hundred and thirty years; but the Hebrew text does not say so.

Mr. Horne puts upon the words an interpretation which they positively and expressly reject, and then boldly exclaims, 'this is not true.'

In page 270 of the fourth volume are mentioned two descriptions of the Nazarenes, as also two classes of the Ebionites.

All this is drawn from the air. The fathers did not always distinguish between the Nazarenes and Ebionites, the names being often used loosely. Strictly speaking the Nazarenes and Ebionites differed in some important points; but that there were two classes of each, is a discovery yet to be made by Neander, Gieseler, and Guerike.

The genuineness of chapters xv. and xvi. [of the epistle to the Romans] has been of late years impugned by Heumann, Semler, Schott, and Eichhorn.' (vol. iv. p. 354.)

According to the use of the term genuineness in the work before us, this assertion is untrue. Not one of the four writers mentioned has impugned the genuineness (authenticity) of the two chapters in question. Heumann looked upon chapters xii-xv. as another letter written subsequently to the preceding, and the sixteenth chapter as two postscripts; but he did not question their Pauline origin. Semler judged the fifteenth and sixteenth chapters to be two different appendices; but he held that they were written by Paul. Schott regarded the sixteenth chapter as made up of fragments of a smaller epistle written by Paul at Corinth to some Asiatic church. Eichhorn thought that the fifteenth chapter was composed on a supplemental piece of parchment; and that chapter xvi. 1-20 was a letter of recommendation for Phoebe, not intended for Rome. The first writer who threw out suspicions against the authenticity, or as Mr. Horne would say genuineness, of the two chapters, was Professor Baur of Tübingen.

'When Antiochus Epiphanes conquered the Jews, about the year 163, before the Christian æra, he prohibited the public reading of the law in the synagogues, on pain of death. The Jews, in order that they might not be wholly deprived of the Word of God, selected from other parts of the sacred writings, etc.' (vol. iii. p. 267.) The opinion here stated, which was originally a conjecture advanced by Elias Levita, has been long ago exploded. So far from having any foundation, it is rather opposed to 1 Maccabees i. 41, etc., and Josephus Antiq. xii. 5, 4 (see De Wette's Einleit. sixth edition, § 78).

After mentioning Saadias's Arabic version of the Pentateuch and of Isaiah, Mr. Horne adds, 'Saadias is also said to have translated the book of Job and the Psalms.' (vol.ii.p.2,32.) We should like to know who the person was that said he translated the Book of Psalms. No traces of his Arabic version of the Psalms have ever yet been discovered. Of his version of Hosea mention is made by David Kimchi, whence Erpenius and Pococke conjectured that Saadias translated all the books of the Old Testament.

The third edition of Wahl's Clavis Novi Testamenti is described as being in two volumes 8vo., and as published in 1844. vol. v. p. 247.)

This is incorrect. The third edition is in quarto, and was published in 1843.

The eleventh edition of Gesenius's Elementary Hebrew Grammar is given (vol. v. p. 233); but the lamented author himself lived to publish the thirteenth edition, of which no notice is taken. The older one must therefore be preferred, because the later is unknown to Mr. Horne. Gesenius's Lehrgebäude is entirely passed over in the list of Hebrew Grammars!

[ocr errors]

The following is an example of the mode in which the author illustrates the important aid furnished by the analogy of kindred languages, in interpretation. In Matthew viii. 20, we read, that Christ had not where to lay his head; which expression has been interpreted as meaning that he had literally no home of his own. But considerable light is thrown upon it by two passages from the Arabic history of Abulpharagius; in the first of which, having stated that Saladin had animated his soldiers to the storming of Tyre, he says, that no place now remained to the Franks, WHERE THEY COULD LAY THEIR HEAD, except Tyre; and again, after relating that the Arabs had stormed Acca or Ptolemais, he says that NO PLACE WAS LEFT TO THE FRANKS on the coast of this (the Mediterranean) sea, WHERE THEY COULD LAY THEIR HEAD. From these two passages it is evident that the evangelist's meaning is, that Jesus Christ had no secure and fixed place of residence.' (vol. ii. pp. 409, 410.)

[ocr errors]

Although this example is taken from Ammon's notes to Ernesti, yet Mr. Horne adopts it as his own. We honestly confess our inability to see the considerable light' thrown by the two passages on the very plain expression, he had not where to lay his head.' It would require the hundred eyes of Argus to discover it. The example in question may be fairly referred to what Mr. Locke terms trifling propositions.' (See Essay on the Understanding, book iv. chapter 8.)

That there are very numerous and most important omissions -omissions fatal to the reputation of any Introduction in the present day, because none can dispense with them, will be apparent to the reader who consults what is written on the authenticity of the pentateuch (vol. i., p. 46, et seq.), in connexion with the meagre analysis of the separate books in the fourth volume. Here the late elaborate works which have been published against the authenticity of the Mosaic books, as well as those in favour of it, are alike unnoticed. So also with regard to the unity of Genesis. The question which has been so much debated in recent times, viz., the composition of Genesis from original documents is little more than mentioned. Mr. Horne states one 'fatal objection' to the hypothesis, 'the total silence of Moses as to any documents consulted by him.' We have always

been accustomed to attribute comparatively little weight to the argumentum e silentio, in accordance with the sentiments of the best logicians; but Mr. Horne uses it as a fatal battery against a host of able and most learned writers, some of them quite as orthodox as himself.

Among 'foreign commentators on the whole Bible' in the fifth volume, we look in vain for any notice of the Exegetisches Handbuch to the Old Testament by Hitzig, Knobel, Thenius, Hirzel, and others; or of the similar Handbuch, to the New Testament, by De Wette. And yet no good interpreter can now dispense with them. The best separate commentaries on single books of the Bible are likewise omitted, for the most part; while numbers of the worthless are given, occasionally with a commendation from the Monthly Review,' or British Magazine.' Hence, under the head of Commentaries on Matthew, Meyer's, (of which a second edition has lately appeared), and De Wette's, (of which a third was published in 1845), do not present themselves.

[ocr errors]

Among the treatises on the interpretation of Scripture prophecies,' we look in vain for Hoffmann, or Birks's First Elements of Sacred Prophecy,' although they are the most important books that have been recently published on the subject; but yet A Manual of Prophecy, by the Rev. Peter Roberts, A.M., London, 1818,' is given. Where is the student of prophecy who would purchase Peter Roberts's worthless book? In the list of the commentators on Genesis, Tuch is omitted, although his learned work stands at the head of all others in the estimation of German scholars.

Hävernick's commentary on Daniel, and the American work of Folsom, on the same important book, are not noticed, yet they are worth the twenty-one productions whose titles are recorded. Of course, the Duke of Manchester's work on the Times of Daniel' is not neglected, of the merits of which it is unnecessary to speak in the present place.

[ocr errors]

Among commentators on Isaiah, no notice is taken of Gesenius! In like manner Hitzig, Hendewerk, Umbreit, Ewald, and Knobel, are not found in Mr. Horne's pages. These are the men who have recently done most for the exposition of Isaiah. On the contrary, Alexander's commentary on the book of Isaiah is given, and said to be published in 1845, whereas it was not published till the present year.

In the long section on the Scripture miracles, which ought to have been condensed, Dr. Chalmers's reply to Hume is altogether unnoticed. Penrose and Le Bas on miracles, are not once alluded to; and yet they are the best books on the subject in the English language. Bishops Gleig and M'Ilvaine appear in con

« PreviousContinue »