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of it: a Justin Martyr says, that they were there improved by the Books of Moses. All things fully proving, by Diodorus Siculus's Account, that they had learn’d in Ægypt whatever made them famous in Greece, as he shews not only of their Religion, but of their Laws and Philosophy. • Plutarch mentions, that Solon, Thales, Plato, Eudoxus, and (according to fome) Lycurgus went into Ægypt to converse with the Priests there. It was by fome affirmed, that Plato and Eudoxus conversed with the Priests in Ægypt for thirteen Years. And Theodoret acquaints us, that not only Plutarch, but Forphyry, and Numenius the Pythagorean wrote, that Pherecydes, Pythagoras, Thales, Solon, and Plato, were instructed in Ægypt by the Hebrews dwelling there, as well as by the Ægyptians. And the Ægyptians being in their Principles both of Divine Worship and Moral Duties fo corrupted, as I have shewn, it is reasonable to conclude, with the Generality of learned Men, whether ancient or modern, that whatever the Philosophers learnt in Ægypt, which recommends their Writings to us, must be from the Jews, and not from the Ægyptians. e Pausanias says, that the Chaldeans and the Indian Magi first taught the Immortality of the Soul, and that from them the Greeks, and particularly Plato, received it ; and yet he informs us, that Plato learnt this Doctrine in Ægypt. He seems to have understood, that Plato was instructed in Ægypt by the Hebrews, (for. by this Name f
Pausanias always calls the Jews) and that the Hebrews came originally out of Chaldea. Indeed Abraham was the first that was call'd a Hebrew, from his passing over the River Euphrates, when he left Chaldea. This learned Author, from his great Search into Antiquities, must have had some particular Reason for
c Strabo. l. xvii.
a Cohort, ad Græc. b De Isid. & Ofir.
calling the Jews Hebrews, and Judea the Land of the Hebrews; such Expressions could not fall by Chance from a Greek Antiquary, but must be design'd to denote their Original from Abraham the Hebrew, a Chaldean; from whence it follows, that when he writes that Plato receiv'd this Do&trine from the Chaldeans, and yet that he learn’d it in Ægypt, he must mean, that he had it from the Hebrews dwelling there. Clearchus, one of Aristotle's own Scholars, and a famous Peripatetick Philosopher, in a Book cited by Josephus, is introduced Aristotle saying, that the Jews were descended from the Indian Philosophers, and that as Philosophers were by the Indians calld Calani, (deriv'd perhaps from Chalane, or Calneh, Gen. X. so. a City of Chaldea) so by the Syrians they were callid Jews from Judea, the place of their Habitation. It is not mention'd, that this Information came from the learned Jew of Calosyria, with whom Aristotle there declares that he had convers’d; but he might probably have it from some in Alexander's Army, who might find divers of the Ten Tribes dispers'd as far as India, and whether they went under the Name of Calani, or the Calani came out of Chaldea, the Jews and
the Calani must have had the same Extraction. * The Indian Philosopher that conversed with Alexander, was called Calanus.
But a certain Critick has lately been pleas'd to remark, that the Old Testament contains nothing so clear, concerning another Life and a future Judgment, as is to be found in the Greek Authors, and he instances in Homer and Hefiod. How unjust this Reflexion is, I appeal to that Book of Solomon, from
& Contr. Ap. 1. i. Eusebius has the same Citation out of Clearchus, but omits that Clause, that Philosophers were callid Calani by the Indians; and Jezus, by the Syrians, Eur. Præp. Evang. 1. ix. c. 5. Κάλανε», Ινδός, αν και βραχμάνων' έτω και πάντα σοφών οι Ινδοί προσαγορ6ύεσιν. Suid. in Κάλανε». * Suid. ibid.
which the Enemies of Religion have thought; they 'could take most Advantage. Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast, that goeth downward to the earth ? Rejoice, O young man, in thy youth, and let thy fpirit chear thee in the days of thy youth, and walk in the ways of thy heart, and in the fight of thine eyes : but know thou, that for all these things God will bring thee into judgment. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be Evil
, Eccl. iii. 21. xi. 9. xii. 14. What can be more plain and exprefs? The Notions in Philosophy t of the latter Heathens, were much improv'd by Ammonius, a Christian and a Teacher of Philosophy in highest Esteem at Alexandria; insomuch that those who fucceeded him in his School, were faid to be éxieng's gusüs, of the Sacred Descent. And we find that upon the Propagation of the Gospel, Moral Philosophy in a few years attain'd to greater Perfe&tion, than ever it had done before, as we may see in the Works of Seneca, Epictetus, h Plutarch, M. Antoninus, Maximus Tyrius, and others.
We may therefore reasonably conclude, that the Precepts and Rules of Morality, which Philosophers all along taught, had their Original from Revelation, rather than from the Strength and Sagacity of their own Reason, because they err in things no less obvious to Natural Reason ; and it appears that they had opportunities of becoming acquainted with the Scriptures, and that they fpared no pains either by reading
# Vid. Porphyr. apud Euseb. Hift. lib. vi. c. 19. & Hierocl. apud. Phot. cod. 214, 251.
n Mode 8 a 18 Ew72 não é tipdyrar, Stol (Plutarchus, Nurmenius, & alii) θρόμενοι και Χρισιανικής θεολογίας πολλά τούς olsekong diéway nóroig, Theodoret. Tom. 4. Serm. 2. de Principio. και δη και η θείων Ευαίγελίων ότε Πλέταρχος και ο Πλωτίνουπηκοσάτω. Δηλοί δε τύτο σαφώς ο 'Αμέλια σε Πορφυρία σε τούσας διατελής, &c. ib. Αρκέση τα οξα Αμμωνία τα διδασκάλα Πλωτίνε, και Νεμάνια τα Πυθαγορικά ερημερία, Nemef. de Nat. Hom, C. 26.
or Conversation, in their own, or in foreign Countries, in their Search and Enquiries after Truth.
III. If the Heathen Philosophy had been as certain and excellent, as it can be pretended to be, yet
there had been great need of a Divine Revelation. For,
1. The Rules of Philosophy lie scatter'd up and down in large and learned Works, mix'd with many wrong and absurd Notions, and therefore must be in great measure useless; how certain and excellent soever they may be in themselves, they can be no Rule of Life to us. No perfect Rule of Manners is to be found in any one Author ; and if it were possible to compile such a Rule out of them all, yet what Man is able to colle& them? i Lactantius is of opinion, that if all the Truths dispers’d
ers'd up and down among the several Sects of Philosophers could be collected together into one System, they would make up a Body of Philofophy agreeable to the Christian Do&rine ; but then he concludes it to be impossible for any Man to make such a Collection, without a supernataral Assistance. And if there were no other reason for it but this, it is no wonder that we find k the Twelve Tables preferr'd before all the Writings of the Philosophers. If there be nothing so absurd, as Tully says, but the Philosophers have taught it, then it is necessary that Men fhould not be left to the Uncertainties and Abfurdities of Philosophy : for though some few of them might be free from such Extravagancies, yet their Notions were no Rule or Standard to the rest, and the best were not without many great Errors.
2. The Rules of Philosophy were no better than good Advice, and carried no Authority with them to oblige Men in Conscience; they had not the Force of a Law, and failing in this necessary point, whatever their intrinsick Worth had been, they never could have had that Effect upon the Lives of Men, which Reveala Religion has. Vertue was propounded by Philosophers rather as a matter of Honor and Decency, than of striet Duty; those were esteemed and admired indeed that observ'd it, but such as did not, only wanted that Commendation. Some Philosophers spoke great and excellent things, but they past rather for wise Sayings, than for Laws of Nature : Their own Reputation, which was greater or lefs- with different sorts of Men, was the only Authority they had: it might be Prudence to do as they taught, but there appear'd no absolute necessity for it. They commonly represented Vertue as very lovely, with many very great and powerful Charins; and all that were of another mind, did not know a true Beauty, and that was an intolerable Disgrace: the Sanction of Rewards and Punishments in the next Life was little insisted upon by them. They recommended Vertire for its own fake, not as it is enjoin'd by God, and will be rewarded by him, and the contrary punish'd ; and those, who could not soar to their Heights, were rather the worse than the better for fuch Doctrines, which they look'd upon as the impracticable Speculations of fome, who had a mind to speak great things. And they often spoke the Truth indeed, which they had from Tradition, or from the Excellency of their own Wit and Genius, but they were not able to make it out by any such Principles, as are wont to influence and govern humane A&ions. Accordingly, we find, that as the several Sects of Philosophy fuited to the Tempers and Humors of particular Men, so far they prevail'd, and no farther. The curious and inquisitive betook themselves to the Academicks, the soft and effeminate to the Epicureans, and the morose to the Stoicks; Men apply'd themselves to whatever opinion they liked best, and found most agreeable to their Nature and Disposition. Thus a severe and haughty Gravity made up the Composition of Cato; it had been hard for him to avoid being a Stoick, and he might
i Lactant. 1. vii. c.7. k Tull. de Orac. lib. i.