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It is certain, that the Books of the Law, and the Writings of the ancient Prophets, were carefully preserved, during the Captivity, and are frequently referred to, and cited by the latter Prophets: The Pens tateuch has been already spoken of; and this is as evident of the Books of the Prophets. The Prophecy of Micah is quoted, Jer xxvi. 18. a little before the Captivity ; and under it, the Prophecy of Jeremiah is cited, Dan. ix. 2. and all the Prophets, ver, 6. and so the Prophets in general are mention’d, Nehem. ix. 26, 30. Zechariah not only cites the former Prophets, Zech. i. 4. but supposes their Writings well known to the People; Should ye not hear the words which the Lord hath cried by the former prophets, when Jerusalem was inhabited, and in prosperity? chap.vii. 7: The Prophet Amos is likewise cited, Tob. ii. 6. and Fonas, and the Prophets in general, chap. xiv. 4, 5, 8. There can then be no reason to question, but that Ezra, Nehemiah, Daniel, Zechariah, and the other Prophets in the time of the Captivity, were very careful to keep the Books of the former Prophets; for they frequently cite them and appeal to them; and expe&ted Deliverance out of their Captivity, by the accomplishment of them. And perhaps, from the Originals themfelves, or however, from Copies taken by Ezra the Scribe, or by some of the latter Prophets, or at least acknowledged for genuine, and approved of by them, the ancient Prophecies, and other Inspired Writings, were preserved; and those of the latter Prophets were added to them ;. and all together, make up the Book of the Prophets, mention’d Acts vii. 42. which was read, as well as the Law, every Sabdath-day, Acts

xiii. 27:

The Books of Johua, Judges, Samuel, and Kings, have the Title of the former Frophets, in the Hebrew Bibles, to distinguish them from the Books, which bear the Title of the latter Prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, &c. The Books of Joshua and Judges have been

already already spoken of. The Books of Samuel were written by Samuel, Nathan and Gad: 1 Chron. xxix. 29. from whence we may conclude, that the Firft Book of Samuel, to the 25th Chapter, was written by Samuel himself; and the rest of that, and the whole Second Book, by Nathan and Gad: but Samuel being a Person so much concerned in the former part of the History, and having written fo much of it, out of refpe&t to him, the whole two Books go under his Name: though, indeed, f the Jews anciently reckoned both the Books of Samuel as one Book; and Aquila (as Theodoret has observed) made no diftin&ion between the First and Second Books of Samuel, following the Hebrew Copies of his time: and it is no wonder, that a Book begun by Samuel., and continued by other Prophets, should bear the Name only of Samuel, From 1 Chron. xxix. 29. we may likewise learn, that the Beginning of the First Book of Kings must be written by one of these Prophets. Both the Books of Kings, as far as Hezekiah's Reign, were written before

Fofiah's time; for, 2 Kings xviii. 5. it is said of Hezekiah, That he trusted in the Lord God of Ifrael: fo that after him was none like him of all the kings of Judah, nor any that were before him: And of Fofiah, it is said, 2 Kings xxiii. 25. That like unto him was there king before him, that turned to the Lord with all his heart, &c. For it is evident, that Fofiah, in his Reformation, exceeded Hezekiah; and from hence it appears, that the History of Hezekiah must be written before Fopal's time; or else it could not have been, with truth, faid of Hezekiah, That there was no King after him who was like him, or equalled him, of all the Kings of Judah. From 1 Chron. iv. 43. it appears, that it was written before the Captivity; though the Genealogies were transcribed afterwards out of the Records

* Origen. apud Euseb. 1. 6. C. 25. Hier. in lib. Reg. Præf. Cyrill. Hier. Catech. 4. Epiphan, de Mensur. & Ponderib. n. 4.

as

as we learn from 1 Chron. ix. 1. The Second Book of Chronicles was not distinguished by the Jews from the First, but both made one Book, as did the two Books of Kings. That the Second Book of Chronicles, as well as the First Book of Kings, was written before the Captivity, we may conclude from 2 Chron. V. 9. 1 Kings viii. 8. for the Ark was not remaining after the Captivity. The last Chapter of the Second Book of Kings, gives so particular an Account of the manner of carrying them away Captive, in every material circumstance, that it seems to have been written at that very time; and is an argument, that Memoirs were constantly taken and preserved, of all that happened. The Second Book of Chronicles concludes with the First Year of Cyrus, in the same words with which the Book of Ezra begins, being added by him at the time when Cyrus gave out his Proclamation : for the Prophets, from time to time, made Continuations to the Histories of their Predecessors, by inserting what res lated to their own Times; and it was no unusual thing, among the Antients, (as Grotius observes) to begin one Book with the Conclusion of another. This we fee in the History of Dionyfius Halicarnasseus, who knew as well as any Man the Art of Writing, and was as much acquainted with the Works of the Authors before him. To say, without any Authority from MSS. that this could so often happen in his Hiftory, by any Mistake of the Transcribers, is altogether groundless. The End of his Tenth Book, and the Beginning of the Eleventh, have the same Sense, tho' with such variation in Words, as could not be by Chance. It is observable, that the Historical Books of Scripture have à plain reference one to another Thus Joshua begins his Book, Now, after the death of

& Origen. apud Euseb. ib. Hieron. ib. Cyril. Hierofol. ib. Epiphan. ib.

Moses,

Mofes, or as it is in the Septuagint, And after, &c. So the Book of Judges, Now after the death of Foshua. And Ruth, in like manner, Now it came to pass in the days when the Judges ruled. All the Historical Books refer to each other, , except the First Book of Chronicles, and that of Nehemiah,” which yet by the Jews was reckon'd, together with Ezra, but as one Book. The reason why the First Book of Chronicles can have no reference to any precedent Book, is plain, because it begins with the Genealogy from Adam. And Nebemiah begins his Book by prefixing his Name, The wards of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah, and then sets down the Year and Month; so that there could be no need of any other connexion. In this he imitated the Prophets; The vision of Isaiah the son of Amos; The words of Jeremiah the fon of Hilkiah. But Ezekiel and Fonah have likewise used the same reference, with which the Historical Books begin. Tho' this could not be so needful in Prophecies, to which the Name of Prophets stand prefix'd, as in Historical Books written without the Author's Name: None of which was designed as a separate Work by it self, but for a Continuation or Supplement of what had been written before, that all together might make up one entire History, in the same manner as Mofes, and all Authors, both ancient and modern, usually connect the several Books of which their Works are composed.

The Psalms are quoted under the Title of the Prophets, i Mat. xiii. 35. and k xxvii. 35. and from the first penning, they were used in the Publick Service of God, i Chron. xvi. 7. 2 Chron. v. 13, vii.6. XX. 21. xxix. 30. Fer. xxxiii. 11. Ezra iii. 10,11. This was known even to their Enemies, in their Captivity, Psal. cxxxvii. 3. and some of them wese written by

h Hieron. in lib. Reg. Præf. Origen. apud Euseb, Hist, I. 6. C. 25. Cyrill. Hierof. catech. 4.

i Psal. LXXVIII. written by Afaph, k Pjal. XXII. by David.

the

the Prophets under it. And Lessons out of the Law and the Prophets, with Hymns out of the Psalms, and Prayers, made up the Jewish Form of Worship. Moses and the Prophets, are put for the whole Old Teftament, Luke xvi. 29. Aits xiii. 15. And Luke xxiv. 44 the whole Old Testament is divided into Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms. The Psalms being put for all the Hagiographa, ' because the Psalms were the First in order of the Hagiographa. The Law, by an usual Figure of Speech, is used for the Psalms, John x. 34. XV. 25. for the Prophets, 1 Cor. xiv. 21. and for the Old Testament, Rom. iii. 19. In which fense the LXXII. are by some Authors said to have translated the Law, when they translated the Jewish Canon of Scripture.

And if both the Law and the Prophets, comprehending all the Books of Scripture written before the Captivity, were still extant, and well known and made use of by pious Men during all that time; and the People had copies of them, or had Means and Opportunities of being acquainted with them, as the Prophet Zechariah supposes, Zech. vii. 7. there is no reason to imagine, that they had not sufficient knowledge of the Hebrew Tongue at their Restoration, many being still alive, who were first carried away Captive: And

the Writings of the Prophets, during the Captivity, and upon their Return, fhew that the People did understand it; for they all wrote in the Hebrew Language, except upon some particular Occasions, where their Prophecies more immediately concerned the Babylonian Affairs. Both Men and Women could understand Ezra, when he read the Law ; And the ears of all the people were attentive unto the book of the law, Neh. viii.

3. It was not the Language, unless in some Particulars, which in all Languages will want Explication to the Vulgar, who are Natives;

| Surenhusius de concil. V. & N. T. loc. p. 231,

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