« ÎnapoiContinuați »
. bious character of the person concerned, that this exten' sive and capacious language could have afforded him.'
I do not perceive this to be rightly said. I have not observed the use of the word napadopos in Josephus to be so ambiguous and equivocal. It has with him a precise and determinate meaning, and is equivalent to miraculous.' So it is used by him in the place before cited, where he speaks of the works of Elisha, which manifested his favour with God. It is easy to allege other places in the writings of Josephus where this word has the same sense.
When Moses in the wilderness saw the burning bush all in a flame, the fruit not hurt, nor the green leaves blasted, he was astonished at the 'wonderful sight :' Exod. iij. 3. και αυτην μεν εδεισε την οψιν την παραδοξον γενομενην. Αnt. 1. 2, cap. 12, p. 105. We call it, “ this great sight,” agreeably to the Hebrew, as do also the Seventy. Certainly it was miraculous, and a token of the divine presence, and allowed to be so by Josephus. When the water in Egypt had been turned by Moses into blood he says, “ The water had not only the colour of blood, but it also caused great pains to those who drank of it. So it was to the Egyptians, • and to them alone: for to the Hebrews it was sweet and • potable, and not at all altered in its nature. When the • king saw this wonderful thing, he was much perplexed, • being concerned for the welfare of the Egyptians; and he * gave leave for the Hebrews to depart.' -Ilpos eV to Tapaδοξον αμηχανησας ο βασιλευς, και δεισας περι των Αιγυπτιων, συνεχωρει τοις Εβραιοις απιεναι. . Ant. 1. 2, c. xiv. sect. 1, p. 108. See Exod. vii. 19.-After relating the safe passage of the Israelites through the Red sea, and the destruction of Pharaoh and his ariny, he says: The Hebrews having ob*tained this wonderful deliverance, Moses led them toward « Mount Sinai,’ Παραδοξε δε της Εβραιοις της σωτηρίας 8τω γενοụevns, k. 1. Ant. I. 3. c. i. in. Comp. Exod. xiv. and xvi. In Numb. xvii. is the contention for the priesthood, which is determined in favour of Aaron and the tribe of Levi, by the budding and blossoming of the rod of Aaron, which had been laid up in the tabernacle. Josephus calls this also a wonderful thing; and says that thereupon all the people readily acquiesced in the divine judgment and determination.' Εκπλαγεντες δ' επι το παραδοξη της θεας, ει και δια μισος ην ο Μωυσης και Ααρων, αφεντες τετο, θαυμαζειν ηρξαντο την τε θες περι αυτων κρισιν και το λοιπον, επευφημαντες τοις δεδογμενους τη θεια, συνεχωρεν Ααρωνι καλως εχειν την αρχιεροσυνην. Αntig. 1. 4, cap. 4, sect. 2, p. 203. Going over the miracles of Elisha, and observing those recorded, 2 Kings ch. vi, and particularly
what is mentioned, ver. 19, 20, he calls it a divine and ( wonderful work.' -Εν εκπληξει δε δεινή και αμηχανία των Συρων, οιον εικος, εφ' έτως θεια και παραδοξω πραγματι κειμενων k. 1. 1. 9, c. 4, sect. 3, p. 479.
In all these places the Greek word signifies miracu• lous:' and so it must do in this paragraph. And as Josephus allows miracles to be divine works, and a proof of a prophetical character, and of the special favour and approbation of God, he could not say this of Jesus unless he was a christian. I might add that Josephus often speaks of God's confirming the mission of Moses by signs and wonders. See particularly Antiq. 1. 2, cap. xii. xiv. And if Josephus owned that Jesus had performed wonderful or miraculous works, he must have received him as a divine teacher and the Messiah, and must have embraced the christian religion; and would have been quite another man than what he really was, and we now see him to be in all his works.
Indeed, it is not Josephus, but Eusebius, or some other christian about this time, who composed this paragraph. Every one must be inclined to think so who observes the connexion in his Evangelical Demonstration, where is the first quotation of it. In the third book of that work Eusebius has a chapter, or section, “ against those who do not give * credit to the history of our Saviour's wonderful works.' Προς τες απειθεντας τη τα σωτηρος ημων περι των παραδοξων πραξeWv din moei. Dem. Ev. 1. 3, c. vii. p. 109. Where follows an excellent argument, taken from the internal characters of credibility in the evangelical history, the success of the gospel among Greeks, and Romans, and Barbarians, and the zeal, intrepidity, and sufferings, of Christ's apostles, and the first christians. Then he says, “ Though d the tes
timony of such men concerning our Saviour must be • esteemed fully sufficient, it cannot be amiss for me to • add, over and above the testimony of Josephus, a Hebrew, who, in the eighteenth book of his Jewish Antiquities, writing the history of affairs in the times of Pilate, speaks of our Saviour in these words.' Where follows the paragraph which we are considering: where our Lord is said to be a worker of wonderful works.' Hy gap tapadočwv epywv TOINTYS. Which way of speaking is so agreeable to Eusebius, and has such a similitude with his style, that I am disposed to put down below some instances from
Αυταρκης μεν ουν και η τωνδε τυγχανει περι τ8 σωτηρος ημων μαρτυρια *. . Dem. Evang. 1. 3. p. 124. A.
Και δη σκεψωμεθα, οσων και είων, συν ανθρωποις τας διατριβας πεποιη
him: which must be of use to satisfy us that the style of this paragraph is very christian, if it be not the composition of Eusebius himself, as Tanaquil Faber suspected.
Fourthly, once more, the learned author of the Dissertation argues, that it was very unlikely that Josephus should be silent about our Saviour, p. 51, 52, · Now, though I en* tirely agree with this great writer,' the author of the Divine Legation of Moses, ó that preaching up Christ was 6 an affair which Josephus would studiously decline, and · have always deemed appearances of this kind considerable · objections to the passage in question, as it is usually read 6 and understood, yet I cannot but think, (as many persons
have already observed,) that it is improbable that he should • omit all account of Jesus, a person so remarkable in Judea, • who so lately had been the cause of so great commotions
among his countrymen, and whose fame was at this very * time spread by his followers throughout the world. Chris
tianity was an affair which made some noise at this very 6 time. Some account of it therefore seems to have been
unavoidable in a person treating of the extraordinary inci• dents of that period. And silence, with regard to so re• markable and conspicuous an object, would have been * only shutting his own eyes that others might not see it.'
I must own that I did not expect to see this learned author enlarge so much, and to set so high value, upon a wornout argument, ' which,' as he says, ' many persons have al* ready observed,' to little purpose in my opinion. I shall only say that this argument proves too much, and therefore it proves nothing. It has been observed f by some learned men, that Josephus has said nothing of the golden calf made by the Jewish people in the wilderness; thus& dropping a very remarkable and important narrative, with a variety of incidents, recorded in one of the books of Moses himself, the Jewish lawgiver, the most sacred of all their scriptures. Yet, if we please, we may argue with a great deal of seeming probability that he did and has taken notice of that transaction, Was it not well known in the world? Is it
not recorded in one of the sacred books of the Old Testa• ment? Is it not in the Hebrew original ? Is it not also in • the Greek version, made before the times of Josephus, and μενος, παραδοξων γεγονε ποιητης εργων. Dem. Εν. 1. 3, c. 4, p. 107. 6.Ουκ ην σεμνοτερον το πραττεσθαι, ότι των τοιωνδε ποιητης εργων παραδοξων γεγονεν το γραφειν ότι μηδεν θνητον περι αυτον συνεβε-κ. λ. Ιb. p. 123. D.
-Iως ουκ αν ειεν αξιοι και εν λοιπους, οις εμαρτυρησαν αυτή παραδοξα; κ. λ. p. 124. Α.
f See Vol. vi. ch. iv. sub. fin. 8 Mr. Whiston's wrong, and indeed absurd, method of accounting for that
in the hands of many Greeks and others? Does not he say, • at the beginning of his Antiquities, that he should write of • the Jewish affairs as he found them recorded in the sacred • books, without adding to them, or taking away from them? • Therefore he could not avoid mentioning this. Is not Jo
sephus an historian in great repute? And can it be conósistent with that character to omit so remarkable an event? Upon the whole, therefore, it may be concluded with great probability, if not with certainty, that this story is in his • works, or was there formerly.'
So men may harangue very plausibly, but yet to little purpose. And therefore it may be applied to the present
If Josephus had reasons which induced him to pass by that transaction, recorded in the ancient history of his people, he might also have reasons which induced him to be silent about some remarkable occurrences in his own time.
I have now, as I think, paid due regard to the author of the aforesaid Dissertation.
II. Since the publication of the first volume of this work, I have received a letter from a learned friend, with several objections to what has been said by me for showing this paragraph in Josephus to be an interpolation. And, if I am not mistaken, my friend is well acquainted with the abovementioned Dissertation.
1. Says my friend : It is introduced with great propriety, as what happened under Pilate's administration, and as what was one occasion of the disturbances amongst • the Jews in his time. Give me leave to add that this pa
ragraph, concerning Jesus, doth not seem to me so much * to interrupt the course of the narration as is complained
of. It is introduced under the article of Pilate, and placed 6 between two circumstances which occasioned disturbances. * And was not the putting Jesus to death, and the continu
ance of his apostles and disciples after him, declaring his 6 resurrection, another very considerable circumstance, • which created very great disturbances ? And though Josephus does not expressly say this, and, perhaps, had good reasons for not saying it, yet perhaps he intimates it, by placing it between the two causes of commotion, by giving so honourable a testimony to Jesus, and telling us that he was crucified at the instigation of the chief persons of 6 the nation.'
To which I answer, that there is not in this paragraph omission, may be seen in his second Dissertation, sect. 28. p. xlv, and a confutation of it may be seen in Dr. Warburton's Divine Legation, Vol. 2. p. 430.
any intimation of disturbances occasioned by Jesus or his followers. And I shall here repeat the words of Mr. Tillemont, which were quoted formerly, Vol. vi. ch. iv. It * must be owned,' says he, that there is one thing embar* rassing in this passage, which is, that it interrupts the • course of the narration in Josephus. For the passage that . immediately follows begins in these terms: “ About the * same time there happened another misfortune which dis• turbed the Jews." For those words, “ another misfor
tune,” have no connection with what was just said of Je• sus Christ : which is not mentioned as an unhappiness. . On the contrary, it has a very natural reference to what
precedes in that place; which is a sedition, in which many • Jews were killed or wounded.' Therefore the paragraph concerning Jesus was not originally there, but was inserted by some interpolator afterwards. So likewise says Vitringa: • Take away the paragraph concerning Jesus, and the pre
ceding and following paragraphs exactly agree and tally • together.' Sed restat longe maxima difficultas, de coharentiâ horum verborum Josephi, quibus Christo testimonium perhibet cun sequentibus; Circa eadem tempora aliud etiam Judæos turbavit incommodum, &c. Quæ tamen verba, si testimonium de Christo e contextu Josephi sustuleris, egregie cum præcedentibus conspirabunt. Vitringa, quoted Vol. vi. ch. iv, in the notes. • He testifies that he was a wise man.'
a wise man.' Is uncertain 66 whether he was not something more than a common man;" « which is the meaning of the words, ειχε ανδρα αυτον λεγειν * xpn. Josephus, upon Jewish principles, could not but * think him a man, though he was uncertain whether he was not somewhat greater and more extraordinary than any
And your own quotation from Josephus about * Moses, Vol. vi. ch. iv, that he was a man superior to his nature, accounts for the character given to Jesus.'
I alleged that place to show that the expression here used, is not altogether without example in the style of Josephus. But I did not intend to say or intimate that Josephus had as high an opinion of Jesus as he had of Moses. "Nor can any think that Josephus believed Jesus to be equal to Moses, unless they suppose him to have been a christian.
• He says he was rapadoğwv epywv points. That the Jews • themselves, his contemporaries and enemies, acknow• ledged:' Matt. xiii. 54; xiv, 2, &c.
This has been considered already in the remarks upon the Dissertation,
. I think, as you allow with great reason his testimony to