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Motives for declining the Invitation to become a Member of an Auxiliary Society, to the British and Foreign Bible Society, by the Rev. Dr. Abauzit.
A System of Physiological Botany, by the Rev. P. Keith, in two octavo volunies with plates, drawn and engraved by Mr. Sowerby.
A Dictionary of English Synonimes, by Mr. Crabb.
A compendious Astronomical and Geographical Class Book for Families and young Persons, by Mr. Bryan.
Paris, during the interesting Month of July, 1815; a Series
Leisure Hours, or Speculations on various Subjects, by John
Travels in Poland, Austria, Bavaria, Sarony, and the
Discourses partly Doctrinal and partly Practical, by the
Some Account of the Mediterranean, 1810 to 1815, political
Oulines of the Philosophy of Life; which has for its object
A Picture of Italy, including a complete Guide to all the
Æsopi Fabula Selecta, with English notes, for the use of
Cicero de Officiis, with English notes, critical and explanatory. The text from the best edition. For students at college and schools.
Ovidii Metamorphoses Selecta, et in usum Scholarum expurgatæ ; cum notis Anglicis. By the Rev. C. Bradley. - On the plan of his Phædrus, Eutropus, &c.
The Naval Monitor; containing Hints for both the Public and Private Conduct of the Young Gentlemen in or entering that Profession, in all its branches; in the course of which, and under the remarks on Gunnery, are some Observations on the Nural Actions with America : also, a Plan for improving the Naval System, as it regards that most useful set of petty officers, the midshipmen. By an Officer in the Nary.
Arr. I. Sequel to Ecclesiastical Researches, in which the Oria
gin of the Introductory Chapters in Matthew and Luke is brought to light from Josephus ; and in which the peculiar Articles of the Orthodox Faith are traced to the System of the Gnostics, who opposed the Gospel in the Days of Christ
and his Apostles. By John Jones. Mawman. 1819. THE vain or fanciful theorist who undertakes the subversion of opinions, which have the sanction of immemorial prescription, must at least possess a becoming confidence in his powers. But a double portion of this quality, which has been seldom friendly to the discovery of truth, must have fallen to the lot of that lite. rary adventurer, who engages in an open attack upon established religious opinions.
However mankind may differ in their notions of the truth which was originally imparted to the church, and delivered with the solemu injunction that it should be preserved incorrupted ; they must at least allow that the church has “ contended for the faith” with that pertinacity which proves her to have been in earnest. The successive persecutions which she sustained, during the probationary period of nearly three centuries, which preceded the full and formal declaration of her opinions, in the first General Council, place this point beyond controversion. We shall not, at present, insist on the few inducements which existed to lead her to err in her integrity, as a proof of the purity of her testimony. The sentence which she then delivered, contains in its uniformity, that internal evidence of its truth, which must ever baffle the efforts of the sceptic to account for it; on any other grounds, than by admitting, that the sacred deposit was transmitted in that purity in which it was originally delivered. Q
For VOL. IV. SEPTEMBER, 1815
For, let the possibility of an error in the testimony of so many witnesses, as met in that council, be granted: there is yet a coincidence in that error, which is wholly inexplicable, on any principles with which we are acquainted.
But these difficulties, though sufficiently discouraging, constitute but an inconsiderable part of the obstacles which impede the success of him, who engages in the desperate undertaking, of the equally obscure and presuming individual whose endeavours now call down our animadversion. Though the sentence de. livered by the first general council on the important points, on which he has obtruded his opinions, without a solitary qualification to fit him for discussing such questions, had surely been sufficient to oppose to the dogmatisni of that sect in which he has enrolled himself; it contains but a small part of the evidence which we can summon in the defence of those truths, on which he has commenced an attack, which is, to speak of it in the softest terms, characterized as much by its impotence as its malevolence.
The documents by which the opinions of the primitive church may be accurately traced, are so various and numerous, that we cannot pursue our researches in any direction, without acquiring that evidence of its fidelity, as a witness and preserver of the faith, which derives invincible strength from the collateral proofs by which it is supported. Whether we appeal to history, or to tradition; to the works of divines, or to the sentence of councils; whether we proceed upon the concession of the Jew, or on the testimony of the Heathen, the success of our researches is in all instances alike. From an examination of the testimony which they respectively bear to the truth, that accumulation of evidence arises, which the sceptic may indeed resist, but cannot easily subvert.
When we descend from nerely general remarks, to an induction of particulars, and submit the point in debate to the touchstone of truth, the first voucher to which an appeal may made, is the testimony of history. At an early period the ecclesiastical annals were examined, by one who was distinguished above all his contemporaries, by his learning and industry; and who possessed every facility of research, in the libraries of Jeru. salem, in which the authentic records of the primitive church were deposited from the earliest period*, After a careful examination of those documents, he has stated the result of his inquiry: and it could have been scarcely less strong in our favour, had it been invented to answer our purpose.
« Thus much,
* Vid. Euseb. Hist. Eccl. Lib. VI. cap. XX. p. 284. 1. 20. ed. Cant. 1720.
the historian declares*, “I have learned from the monuments of ancient writers, that until the siege of Jerusalem, under Hadrian, a succession of fifteen bishops had presided in the church of Jerusalem: all of whom, being Hebrews by origin, embraced the doctrine held on the person of Christ in its genuine purity.”.
Had we been at any loss to determine in what sense this de claration should be understood, the historian by whom it was made might be taken as his own interpreter. The account which he has given of the Ebionite heresy will clearly evince in what sense he conceived, that the doctrine relative to the person of Christ, was held by the Church of Jerusalem. As he pronounces their doctrine impious who denied the incarnation, though they acknowledged the divinity of the Logost; there cannot be room for a cavil, against the consequence, that he considered nothing short of a plenary confession of the Godhead of Christ, an admission of the genuine doctrine.
To the testimony thus delivered by history the most ample confirmation is superinduced by tradition. Without insisting on the evidence of the fifteen bishops who succeeded St. James in the Eastern Church of Jerusalem ; the testimony of twelve bishops who succeeded St. Peter in the Western Church of Rome, may be confidently cited in support of the orthodox cause. This testimony has been collected by a primitive writer , who, in the line of succession, was but one remove from the Apostles; having enjoyed the intimacy of a disciple of the last surviving Evangelist . In what sense he understood the testimony thus born by that primitive church to the person of Christ, it must be superfluous to state when his testimony is produced .
* Vid. Euseb. Hist. Eccles. Lib. IV. cap. v. p. 143. 1. 23. rocētov ale εξ εγγράφων παρείληφα, ως μέχρι της κατα Αδριανών πολιορκίας, πεντεκαίδεκα τον αριθμόν αυτόθι γεγόνασιν επισκόπων διαδοχαί· ες πάντας 'Εβραίας φασίν όντας ανέκαθεν, την γνώσιν τα Χρισέ γνησίως καταδέξασθαι.
* Id. ibid. Lib. III. cap. xxvii. p. 121. 1. 20_36. Conf. Dem. Evang. Lib. IV. cap. ii. xv. p. 146. 171. sqq. ed. Par. 1628.
# Vid. S. Iren. adv. Hær. Lib. III. capp. ii, iii, iv. p. 174, sqq. ed. . Bened.
Ś Conf. S. Iren. ibid. cap. iii. Ø 4. p. 176.
11 S. Iren. ibid. cap. iv. 5 2. “ Cui ordinationi assentiunt multæ. gentes barbarorum, eorum qui in Christo credunt, sine charta et atramento scriptam habentes per Spiritum in cordibus suis salutem, et veterem traditionem diligenter custodientes ; in unum Deum credentes fabricatorem cæli et terræ, et omnium quæ in eis sunt, per Christum Jesum Dei Filium. Qui propter eminentissimam ergo figmentum suum dilectionem, eam quæ esset ex Virgine generationem sustinuit, ipse per se hominem adunans Deo, &c.”
In the same chapter in which he declares that God would judge the Ebionites, who of all the primitive heretics, exclusively considered our Redeemer a man born like themselves ; he asserts the divinity of our Lord; and states this to be the doctrine, which had descended traditionally to the church in whatever regions she had published the gracious terms of the Gospel *.
The testimony of history thus confirmed by tradition, derives still further corroboration from the evidence of that succession of writers, who have followed each other, in a long line commencing with the age of the Apostles. On the first attempt which was made to impeach the integrity of the church as a witness of the truth, the vindicators of her testimony supported her defence on the concurrence of the Sacred Text, and the in terpretation of the ecclesiastical writers #. They maintained, that previously to the age in which this novel charge was advanced, many had written in defence of the truth, against the heathens and hereticks; and that all of them asserted the orthodos doctrine of the divinity of Christ I, in terms the most fulfi and explicit. These writings were examined at an early period by a person fully competent to appreciate the weight of their testimony S; but they were found on experiment to justify the stress which was laid on their authority. The principal part of these works exist either wholly or partially at the present day; and a learned prelate of our church, equally distinguished by the extensiveness of his erudition and the strength and comprehensiveness of his mind, has carefully examined their evidence; but the result of his inquiry has been ihe production of accumulate ing proof in support of the orthodox doctrine. By a full induction lie has unanswerably demonstrated, that but one opinion prevailed in the church on the person of Christ from the earliest period; and that this opinion corresponded, even in the minutest. respect, with the plenary sentence which was passed on the question before us in the first general council 7.
As the body of evidence which we thus quote in defence of the peculiar doctrines of Christianity, is full and connected; it may be easily proved to be universally held, and this from the earliest ages. In the next succession after the Apostles, a curious and learned enquirer, visited the principal churches, dispersed
* Conf. S. Iren. ibid. Lib. IV. cap. xxxiii. $ 4.7. 8. pp.271,272.
+ Caius ap. Euseb. Hist. Eccl. Lib. V. cap. xxviii. p. 251. 1. 26. $99. | Id. ibid. p. 252. 1.12–18. § Euseb. ib. cap. xxi. p. 181. 1. 21-28. il D. Bull. Der, Fid. Nicen. Op. Lat. ed. Lond.
| Id. ibid. Sect. II. cap. xv. p. 153. Conf. Sect. III. cap. Eu $.24. p. 220.