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remembered that in the best days of both Greece and Rome, education and religion were inseparable. If the Greeks in the midst of all their science were corrupt, the reason was not indeed that they had no religion, but that their religion was corrupt. It is a mistake to suppose that the religions of Greece and of early Rome were the same. For, while the former, aiming at the imagination and not the heart, was sensual in its character and debased by the most revolting fables of the Gods, the latter contained many elements of a sound natural theology. The absence of images, the overseeing providence, if not the unity of God, the immortality of the soul, the accountability of man, and the doctrine of future rewards and punishments, were elements of the early Roman religion which gave it no small amount of moral influence. The first Romans were an eminently pious race, and therefore they were moral. But this subject cannot here be pursued.* We therefore close with the expression of the hope that since the agitation of the questions, "Shall religion be incorporated into our systems of education?" "And if so, in what way shall this be done?" has been commenced, this agitation will be continued till the momentous bearings of the subject are fully understood. For on the solution of these difficult problems depend in our country the prevalence of morality, the stability of freedom, the security of right, and the safety of life itself.
*For authority respecting the character of the religion of early Rome, and its superiority over that of Greece, the reader is referred to Plutarch's Life of Numa; August. De Civitate Dei IV: 31, I: 131; Tertull. Apologet § 25; Dion. Hal. II : 18, 19, 75; Polyb VI: 54; Cic. De Harusp. Respons. § 9; Bolingbroke's Works IV: 427; Kreutzers Symbolik II: 992, 993; Hegels Werke (Vorlesungen Ueber die Philosophie der Geschichte) IX: 297. “ According to the common idea, the Roman religion, with a change of name only, was the same as the Greek. Upon a closer inspection, however, the most striking difference shows itself." "In all circumstances the Roman was pious," etc. For a contrary view see Meiners De Vero Deo p. 17: Buchholz Philosophische Untersuchungen ueber die Römer I: 35.
EXAMINATION Or Prof. Stuart ON HEBREWS, IX: 16–18.
By Rev. Albert Barnes, Pastor of the First Presbyterian Church, Philadelphia.
16 Οπου γὰρ διαθήκη, θάνατον ἀνάγκη φέρεσθαι τοῦ διαθεμένου. 17 Διαθήκη γὰς ἐπὶ νεκροῖς βεβαία· ἐπεὶ μήποτε ἰσχύει ὅτε ζῆ ὁ διαθέμενος.
18 Οθεν οὐδ ̓ ἡ πρώτη χωρίς αἵματος ἐγκεκαίνισται.
THIS is rendered in the common version, passage where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. For a testament is of force after men are dead; otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth. Whereupon neither the first testament was dedicated without blood."
It is rendered by Prof. Stuart (Com. on the Hebrews, p. 607*) "Moreover, where there is a testament, it is necessary that the death of the testator should take place; because a testament is valid in respect to those only who are dead, since it hath no force while the testator is living. Hence, not even the first [covenant] was ratified without blood.”
In the explanation of this passage two interpretations have been proposed. The first is that which is found in our common version, and which is defended by Prof. Stuart, by which the word dat is rendered testament or will; and the other, that which regards the word as meaning covenant. Distinguished names may be found defending each of the interpretations proposed, and though the current of authority has been in favor of the interpretation defended by Prof. S., yet it is not so decided as to make it improper to enquire into the validity of this exposition.
As the meaning of the whole passage, as well as of many other important passages in the New Testament, depends on the sense affixed to the word diadan, it will be proper to precede the particular examination of the passage, by a brief enquiry into the meaning of this word.
Perhaps there is no single term in the Bible that is more
Second Edition of the Commentary.
important than this, or the significations attached to which
The word dann occurs in the New Testament thirty-three times. It is translated covenant in the common verson, in Luke i: 72, Acts iii: 25; vii: 8, Rom. ix: 4; xi: 27, Gal. iii: 15, 17; iv: 24, Eph. ii: 12, Heb. viii: 6, 8, 9 bis, 10, ix: 4 bis; x: 16, xii: 24, xiii: 20. In every other instance it is rendered testament. In four of those instances, Matt. xxvi: 28, Mark xiv: 24, Luke xxii: 20, and 1 Cor. xi: 25, it is used with reference to the institution or celebration of the Lord's supper. In the Septuagint it is used not far from three hundred times, in considerably more than two hundred of which, it is the translation of the word n. In one instance, Zech. xi: 14, it is the translation of the word , brotherhood; once, Deut. ix: 5, as the translation of , word; once, Jer. xxiv: 18, as the translation of , words of the covenant; once, Lev. xxvi: 11. as the translation of, tabernacle; once Ex. xxx1: 7, as the translation of, testimony; it occurs once, Ezek. xxvi : 28, where the reading of the Greek and Hebrew text is doubtful, and three times, 1 Sam. xi: 2, xx: 8, 1 Kings, viii 9, when the word is not in the Hebrew text. From this use of the word by the translators of the Septuagint, it is evident that they regarded it as the proper translation of the Hebrew, and as conveying the same sense which that word conveys. It cannot be reasonably doubted, that the writers of the New Testament were led to the use of this word, in part at least, by the fact that they found it in the
version which was in common use, but it cannot be doubted also, that they regarded this word as fairly conveying the meaning of the Hebrew word n. On no principle can it be supposed, that inspired and honest men would use a word in referring to transactions in the Old Testament which did not fairly convey the idea which the inspired writers of the Old Testament meant to convey. The use being thus regarded as settled, there are some remarkable facts which present themselves to our notice, demanding attention and explanation. These facts are the following.
(1.) The word dan is not the word which properly denotes compact, agreement, or covenant. That word is συνθήκη--or in other forms σύνθεσις, and συνθεσία; or if the word diathan, is used in that signification it is only remotely, and as a secondary meaning. See Passow, Comp. the Septuagint in Isa. xxviii: 15, xxx: 1, Dan. xi: 6, Wisdom i: 16, 1 Mac. x: 26, 2 Mac. xiii: 25; xiv: 26. It is not the word which a Greek would have naturally used to denote a compact, or covenant. He would have employed it to denote a disposition, ordering, or arrangement of things, whether of religious rites, civil customs, or property; or if used in reference to a compact, it would have been with the idea of an arrangement, or ordering of matters, not with the primary notion of an agreement with another.
(2.) The word σvvoýun is never used in the New Testament. In all the allusions to the transactions between God and man, this word is never employed. For some cause, the writers and speakers of the New Testament seem to have supposed that the word would convey an improper idea, or leave an impression which they did not wish to leave. Though it might have been supposed that in speaking of the various transactions between God and man, and especially, if they had the common views which prevail now in theology, they would have selected this word, yet with entire uniformity they have avoided it. No one of them-though the word Sian has been used by no less than six of the writers of the New Testament-has been betrayed in a single instance into the use of the word ouvex or has differed from his brethren in the use of the language employed. This cannot be supposed to have been the result of concert or collusion, but it must have been founded in some reason which operated equally on all their minds.
(3.) In like manner, and with like remarkable uniformity, the word ouvexn is never used in the Septuagint, with reference to any arrangement or covenant" between God and man. Once, indeed, in the Apocrypha, and but once, the word duvon is used in that sense. "With great circumspection didst thou judge thine own sons, unto whose fathers thou hast sworn, and made covenants of good promises,"ὅρκους καὶ συνθήκας ἔδωκας ἀγαθῶν ὑποσχέσεων. In the three only other instances in which the word ouvex is used in the Septuagint, it is with reference to compacts between man and man. Isa. xxviii: 15, "and with death we are at agreement"καὶ ἐποιήσαμεν μετὰ τοῦ θανάτου συνθήκας—where it is a translation of ; Dan. xi: 6, "the king's daughter of the south shall come to the king of the north to make an agreement,' Tou Toñoαi duvonxas, where it is a translation of rectitudes, or rights; and Isa. xxx: i, "that cover with a covering but not of my spirit," where it is a translation of pn, covering, and refers to compacts, according to the translation of the Septuagint, made with other nations. This remarkable fact, that the word ouvexn is never used by the authors of that ancient version to denote any transaction between God and man, shows also that there was some reason for it which acted on their minds with entire uniformity. No man can believe that that whole version was made by the same individual, or even nearly at the same time, or by men acting in concert, and the reason, therefore, why they avoided the use of this word, must have been one that would occur to many minds, and must have been so strong and decided as to keep them from varying from one another.
(4.) It is not less remarkable that neither in the Septuagint nor the New Testament, is the word diabhan ever used in the sense of will or testament, unless it be in the case before us, Heb. ix: 16, 17. This is conceded on all hands, and is admitted expressly by Prof. Stuart, (p. 439,) though he still defends this use of the word in this passage. I shall have occasion to advert to this indisputable fact, and to show its importance in regard to the proper interpretation of this passage, in another place. At present it is necessary to remark on it only as a fact which no one will call in question.
A very important enquiry at once presents itself here, and which, so far as I know, has never received a solution which has been generally regarded as satisfactory. It is, why was