Laurentius Sarson.

¶ To the Reader.

The lesse skilfull Reader may omit what is contain'd between page 25. and page 69. The rest was deli­vered in Sermons, and is both more practicall and facile.

1. TIM. 1.15.

This is a faithfull saying (in another translation, a true saying) and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.

WE may observe in this Scripture three gene­rall parts: First, the [...], the Preface, or introduction to a doctrine preached by S. Paul, This is a faithfull saying, and worthy of all acceptation. Secondly, the doctrine it self, Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners: I may fitly apply to my Text, what is spoken of the Church, Cant. 7.2. Thy belly is a heap of wheat hedged in with lillies. Thirdly, the [...], or Epi­logue, whereof I am chief. The Preface contains his commendation of the doctrine, and the Epilogue the ap­plication of it to himself. Here's meat, and sauce, and a stomach. We have in the doctrine [...], as [...] in Clem. Alex. Admonit. ad Gentes. spirituall food, the bread of life, the Manna which came down from heaven, Christs merits, sinners redemption. Here's meat which should need no sauce were not our stomachs vitiated, and squeamish of what most nutritive.

S. Paul in the end of the verse intimateth his hungring and thirsting after Christs merits; For those words, of whom I am chief, although they have other respects and [Page 2] moments not to be omitted, are the yawning or gasping of an hungrie soul, a grone under the weight of sinne, a panting after nearer union with Christ. Such is the sto­mach of each Christian, of all who are apprehensive of their own emptinesse, and affected with it, of all who have not scared consciences, hardened hearts, and stupefied affe­ctions. These words are likewise an application of Christs merits to himself, Christ came into the world to save sin­ners; such onely efficaciously, as are, or shall be wearied with their sinnes, and weary of them: such as acknow­ledge their sinnes, and desire to be delivered from the guilt, and from the stain of them; from the punishment and from the practise of sinne; and find that they are unable to re­lieve themselves, unable to justifie or sanctifie themselves; and therefore are willing to accept of a Saviour.

The last particle of the verse is, as you see, vox esurien­tis, & vox mendicantis, & vox comedentis. I doubt not but many an honest soul here present reads in his own heart, what no language can expresse, S. Pauls affections resulting from the conjunction of two of his apprehensi­ons expressed in my Text, one of his own spirituall wants, the other of Gods free grace in Christ, with what inten­tion of love and desire, with what comfort, with what de­votion, with what zeal he embraced a Saviour. We have here a full resemblance of that in the Psalmist, Psal. 81.10. I am the Lord thy God which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, open thy mouth wide (harcebh-pica, dilare thy mouth) and I will fill it. If here be any who have not tasted how good and gracious the Lord is, here is also sauce sufficient to commend unto their palates the Gospel-provi­sion set before them, 'Tis a faithfull saying, and worthy of all acceptation: [...] is the same that [...], equivalent to [...], and to [...] used by our Saviour. [...] (in Hebrew) signifies both true and faithfull. See He [...]sius in his P [...]go­mena in [...]er [...]i­tat. sacr. And upon Matth. 12.20. See notes upon the word [...] in Theocritus his syrinx, cidyll. 32. Nothing is more usuall, then that [Page 3] when a word hath severall significations, another word, whether in the same or in a distinct language, having pro­perly one of the significations, should be enlarged to the rest: [...] faithfull, is the same that [...] true.

These words, I conceive, have a double aspect, one to S. Paul, another to the doctrine preached by him: Each brings forth twinnes:

First, they contain the qualities, the value, the worth, the truth and acceptablenesse of the doctrine.

Secondly, they precede the doctrine; are a preface, an in­troduction to it. I shall deferre the first of these habitudes till I come to the doctrine it self.

That respect also which they have to S. Paul is double: The words speak him who wrote them, a Saint; but may be considered as the language of one that had been a Saul, a persecutour, (that is, of a convert, reflecting upon his sinnes:) or as the words of a preacher of the Gospel. Un­der the former relation, they may be termed vox exultan­tis; and under the other, vox evangelizantis.

I shall premise to the main doctrine somewhat upon the words preceding, as they are a preface or introduction; moreover as they have respect to S. Paul.

First of the first, as these words, This is a faithfull say­ing, and worthy of all acceptation, are a preface or intro­duction to the doctrine following, they afford us this ob­servation, viz. That mens hearts are so perverse about spi­rituall things, that art, rhetorick, an holy craft and wi­linesse is necessary in the delivery of points of greatest con­cernment, of greatest advantage, such as hold out to them salvation. We must not conceive that S. Pauls Epistles written to Timothy, concerned Timothy alone; each Epi­stle in the New Testament, to whomsoever it is inscribed, may serve for the instruction of each sinner (those except­ed, who by the sinne against the holy Ghost have debarred themselves from heaven) and of each convert. Wicked men are averse from attending to what would conduce [Page 4] most to their welfare. First I shall clear the [...]; and then the [...].

That it is so, is evinced from those many aggravations of naturall mens perversnesse in Scripture.

First, from plain and direct expressions of mans perverse­nesse. The 13. of the 2. of Jeremy is to this purpose very accommodate; For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns that can hold no water. See also Jer. 5.3. O Lord, are not thine eyes upon the truth? thou hast sticken them, but they have not grie­ved; thou hast consumed them, but they have refused to receive correction: they have made their faces harder then a rock, they have refused to return. Of many other Scri­ptures suitable to this occasion, I shall commend to you onely the first of the Proverbs, Wisdome uttereth her voice in the chief places of concourse, stretcheth out her hand, playes the Oratresse both for elocution and action: but her auditours set at nought her counsell, would none of her re­proof.

Secondly, from those contained in comparisons of men with beasts. Man is compared to the beast that perisheth, Psal. 49.12. to the dromedary in the wildernesse, Jer. 2.24. to a wild asses colt, Job 11.12. to the deaf adder, Psal. 58.4.Their thoughts (like cocka­trice egges) break out into viperous words and actions. See R.D. Kimch. upon the text. to cockatrices and spiders, Esay 59.5. to a horse rushing into the battell, Jer. 8.6. Brutes, because they want reason, oft run away from those that would feed them, and perform to them other good offices, and run into danger.

The dromedary in the wildernesse cannot be taken but in her moneth, when she is bagg'd. The wild asses colt is the wildest of wild asses. The deaf adder, although by spitting out his poyson he might renew his age, stoppeth his ears, by applying one to the earth, and covering the other with his tail, lest he should heare the voice of the charmer. The war-horse rusheth upon the pikes, upon de­struction.

[Page 5]Man is more brutish then beasts, then the dullest of beasts, Esa. 1.3. The ox knoweth his owner, and asse his masters crib; but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider. Here's what astonisheth both heaven and earth. God layes open his grievances to the heavens, and to the earth, things inanimate; as if those were more intelligent, and more ingenious then men. Israel neglected his owner and his nourisher, God who had chosen him for a peculi­ar possession, who constantly, sometimes by his extraordi­nary providence, had maintained him. The ox and the asse gave place to their owner and master in the stable at Beth­lehem, when as men denied him room in the inne. But this morosity might proceed from a veniall ignorance; falls much short of that more then brutish stupidity, which is here described. Wicked men do not onely refuse Christ, an object of their beneficence in his poore members; but like­wise offering to provide for them: They know that godli­nesse is great gain, hath the promises of this life and that to come, and yet reject it.

In the New Testament, wicked men are compared to dogs and swine, Matth. 7.6. Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn a­gain and rent you. Nihil aliud est totus mun­dus ante con­versionem, nisi aut hara porco­rum, vel collu­vies rabidorum canum. Aug. Impure men are here compared to creatures unclean according to the Law, dogs and swine. Should you cast what is precious to swine, they are ready to trample it ( [...]) inter pedes suos: if to dogs, they will turn again and bite you. But to trample under their feet, and to turn again, and to rent those that come near them, agree to the nature of both those creatures. In every wicked man there is something answerable to each of those ill conditions in dogs and swine. They neglect, contemne, and vilifie grace and mercy offered in Christ: They tread under foot the Sonne of God, count the bloud of the Covenant an unholy thing, and do despite to the Spi­rit of grace, Heb. 10.29.

[Page 6]Thirdly, from Gods complaining of sinne and sinners. This in Greek is called [...], and is defined [...], vituperatio, utpote eorum qui con­temnunt, aut negligunt. God complains to the heavens and to the earth, that he had nourished and brought up children, who rebelled against him, Esa. 1.2.

Fourthly, from Gods groning under mens stubborn and stiffe-necked rebellion. He complains of Israel with a sigh, Esa. 1.4. Ah sinfull nation, a people laden with ini­quity, a seed of evill doers, children that are corrupters; they have forsaken the Lord, they have provoked the holy one of Israel to anger, they are gone away backward. 'Tis a small thing that the whole creation groneth under mans sinne, and travelleth together in pain, Rom. 8.22. God himself is pressed with mens iniquities, as a cart is pressed that is full of sheaves, Amos 2.13. The Almighty expres­seth another sigh, Esa. 1.24. Ah, I will ease me of mine adversaries, and avenge me of mine enemies.

Fifthly, from God upbraiding such as have been reso­lute in impenitency, Christ upbraided the cities, wherein most of his mighty works were done, because they repent­ed not, Matth. 11.20. God in holy Scriptures by many accusations, and reprehensions, and chidings of sinners, expostulations with them, redargutions of their perverse wayes, lamentings for their destruction, expresseth empha­tically mens aversnesse from terms of eternall peace and salvation. I may adde, that promises and threatnings are oft repeated, that sometimes the hearts of Gods children unlesse they be mollified with afflictions, will not kindly receive the impressions of the Spirit. I shall have occasion of illustrating these particulars, when I shew that Christ came into the world to save sinners. No believer so com­pletely closeth with Christ, and promises founded in him, as that he may not seasonably be the object of exhortati­ons, of motives and inducements to nearer union with a Saviour. The Israelites in their journey to Canaan had a [Page 7] pull-back-inclination towards Egypt. Lots wife looked back towards Sodome. David must be afflicted that he may learn Gods statutes. So you have the [...] of the do­ctrine proved. I shall be brief in the [...].

Wicked men have sinne reigning in them: And there is in each regenerate person, together with the kingdome of David the house of Saul. Grace and lust have junctas ha­bitationes, though not divisum imperium: though they reigne not together, yet they dwell together. They exist not onely propè, but unà; are not onely juxta se posita, but likewise mutuò se penetrantia. They have, though not the same father, yet the same mother; and as they are sisters, so also twinnes; are together in the wombe, and born to­gether; in godly men together in each faculty, and in each good action. There's iniquity in the best of our perfor­mances. The godly fall so far short of the closest union possible with Christ, as they fall short of integrity, of per­fection in grace. The godly are not so loos'd from them­selves, as that S. Paul may imitate the Areopagites, omit­te [...], when he speaks to them about spiritu­all things. He's wont to premise insinuations: Sometimes he conciliates affection by loving compellations; the word Brethren is frequent with him: Sometimes by mild and gentle entreatings, I beseech you, be followers of me, 1. Cor. 4.16. Sometimes by both joyned together, I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you give up your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service, Rom. 12.1.

In my Text there is insinuatio ex re [...]ta, & ipsis causae visceribus sumta. And insinuation of this kind is most potent. We are ready alwayes to enquire cui bono. If we search all Rhetoricks cells, we shall not find any trope or figure, which was at any time so impudent or imprudent, as to perswade any thing which had not faciem boni. The unjust judge, (Luke 18.) although he neither feared God, nor regarded man, had his end in avenging the widow of [Page 8] her adversary. He did it ad redimendum vexationem: be­cause the widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, left by her continuall coming she weary me.

S. Paul borroweth a preface from his doctrine: that furnisheth him with arguments most prevalent over mens affections. It's true and worthy of all acceptation. Here'sThemist. O­rat. 9. [...], aditus illustris. The Rhetori­cians rule concerning Exordium's is observed: Neither is he wanting in the observance of that other rule prescribed by Horace to Poets, (usefull also for Oratours,) Si vis me flere, dolendum est Primùm ipsi tibi. Himself is affected with what he writes to others.

In the verse next but one before, he commemorates that he had been a blasphemer, a persecutour, and injurious. He addes in that verse, that he obtained mercy. In the 14. verse he mentioneth his pledges of mercy obtained; of his justification, viz. his faith and love. These graces assured him of Gods favour. In the 15. verse he celebrates and crowns the fountain of all mercy and grace: 'Tis a faith­full saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. His affections strive with his faith, and as if more nimble, first drop out of his pen, get the first vent and expression, preface to the Gospel-doctrine he believed. So I am fallen upon the words of the preface, as they have respect to S. Paul.

They are as so considered, in the first place (vox con­versi peccatoris in Christo exultantis) the voice of a con­vert triumphing in Gods free grace in Christ. He who had so much used Esaus hands, now hath got Jacobs voice: and the context will vindicate him from dissimulation. Her's lumen non siccum, sed affectibus maceratum. Here are good tidings, if true; and they are as true as profitable to souls which have been enthralled under sinne and Satan. They are as true as truth it self. That Christ come into the world to save sinners, is the onely cordiall to a sinne-sick soul. Here is [...]: Moreover such truth as [Page 9] is suteable to the stomach, as well as pleasing to the palate, such truth as apports nourishment to each true Christian. I shall speak of the truth and acceptablenesse of the do­ctrine delivered by S. Paul, hereafter.

You see how the words of the preface respected S. Paul a sinner: I shall now explain them more largely, as they are vox evangelizantis, as they are the words of Paul a preacher of the Gospel.

The words of the Preface may be considered as respect­ing S. Paul, a preacher of the Gospel, both as they are a preface, and as they contain the qualities of the following doctrine. As referred to him under the first of those noti­ons, they commend unto us those bowels of pity, and that sincerity which he used in the dispensing of Gospel-truths. As he freely received, so he freely and without envie giveth: with the lepers (2. Kings 7.9.) apprehends he should con­tract guilt and blame to himself, if he withheld good ti­dings: himself eâdem operâ triumphs in the rich and sure mercies of the Gospel, and with best advantage commends them to others.

The words of the preface, as they contain the qualities of the doctrine following, referred to S. Paul, speak him one which taught truth; moreover such truth as was wor­thy of all acceptation.

1. Gods faithfull Ministers, such as labour sincerely in Gods vineyard, preach truth.

2. What is worthy of all acceptation.

3. They joyn these two together.

First of the first. Those who are faithfull in the mini­stery preach truth. This hath been their constant practise: To give instances of all would take up more time then is allowed me. I must in the proof of the point rather use an example, then an enumeration. S. Paul, as if it was de­creed that truth should viam invenire vel facere, useth the profession of it sometimes for a preface, and sometimes for an apologie; for a preface in my Text, This is a faithfull [Page 10] saying: for an apologie, Acts 26.25. I am not mad, most noble Festus, but speak forth the words of truth and so­bernesse: for a preface and apologie together, Rom. 9.1. I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bea­ring me witnesse in the holy Ghost. You see the practise of S. Paul; and he thought also that he had the Spirit of God, 1. Cor. 7.40.

This argumentation although from an example, is va­lid. We may argue from a part to the whole in essentialls. And to be well affected towards the truth, is essentiall to each sincere preacher of the Gospel. Should we esteem the 17. of the third of the Epistle to the Philippians, and the sixteenth of the fourth of the first Epistle to the Corin­thians, in which S. Paul exhorts us to be followers of him, to be counsel rather then precept, to have been dictated by a private spirit; yet we could not but acknowledge the first of the 11. of the first to the Corinthians, an Oracle: there he saith, Be ye followers of me, even as I am also of Christ: Truth is Christs banner. The Apostles, and all who have been his sectatours, have fought under it, & hoc signo vice­runt. Christ is truth it self, archetypall truth. He is truth essentially, so could not but use it in his expressions, whe­ther theoreticall or practicall. His enemies the Pharisees and Herodians make a glorious confession, Matth. 22.16. We know that thou art true, and teachest the way of God in truth, neither carest thou for any man; for thou re­gardest not the person of men. And in John 8.40. Ye seek to kill me a man that hath told you the truth which I have heard of God. He was born to this end, that he should bear witnesse of the truth, Joh. 18.37. He was truth according to his essence, likewise according to his offices. He was, and likewise taught, and by holy violence impo­sed upon his subjects the true way to salvation. He is the way, the truth, and the life, Joh. 14.6. He is full of grace and truth, Joh. 1.14. The Law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ, Joh. 1.17. We can­not [Page 11] be saved by the Law; the new Covenant, that of grace is the true way to heaven.

The sweetnesse of this truth is described in the Canticles, As the apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my beloved amongst the sonnes; I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my tast, Cant. 2.3. The fruit of this beloved one is the good tidings of the Gospel. The hands of those who open to Christ (who admit him into their souls) drop with myrrhe, Can. 5.5. Obedience is truth propagated (veritas protensa). Truth, like the precious ointment wherewith the high Priests were installed, runs down from the head into the skirts of each Christians garments. The anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you: and this anoint­ing is truth, 1. Joh. 2.27.

But neither do I deny that (mor nghobher ngal cappoth hammanghul) myrrha transiens super manubria serae, may fitly be interpreted grace disposing us to admit truth, when it knocks at the doores of our hearts. Myrrhe passing up­on the handles of the lock, is grace oyling the locks of our hearts: A kingdome divided against it self cannot stand. Those who invent, or propagate falshood, are Satans a­gents. Christ prayeth to the Father for his disciples (Joh. 17.17.) that he would sanctifie them through his truth. He promiseth his disciples another Comforter, who should abide with them for ever, even the spirit of truth, Joh. 14.16, 17. cap. 15.26. he foretelleth that the Spirit of truth should guide them into all truth, Joh. 16.13. Christ is the head of truth, Alpha and Omega, Apoc. 1.11. His Mini­sters the 24. Elders have the next place to him. Apoc. 4:4. These are the neck of truth, Beta and Psi. With the Gre­cians the Alphabet was truths statue: Veritas effingebatur ex literis Graecis, cujus caput ex α & ω, collum ex β & ł, & caetera deinceps membra ex literis prioribus, deinceps ex sequentibus & posterioribus per seriem quandam. All Gods children, and so his faithfull Ministers are incorpo­rated [Page 12] into truth: Gods Ministers are ambassadours and a­gents for the God of truth, (and as the Jews are wont to say in another sense) speak in the language of him that sent them. They are anointed with the Spirit of truth.

You have proof of the point à posteriori & á priori. Here an objection is obvious: Do none of those who have devoted themselves to the preaching of the Gospel, swerve from truth?

I acknowledge that they frequently do. I answer, first that I spake concerning such as were sincere in the mini­stery. There are ravenous wolves in lambs attire: many out of covetousnesse, pretend what ambition will not suf­fer them to perform. If we roll over Ecclesiasticall hi­stories, we shall find that ambition created all the ancient errours and heresies. Too many nowadayes are readier to close with errours hatchd by Papists, and to arrogate to themselves to be the first inventers of them, then to retain truth professed by those who have ever been thought Or­thodox. I yield that some betrusted with most, are most defective in their duties. Some mancipated to themselves, abound in dissimulation. I spake of such as were faith­full labourers in Gods harvest; such preach not themselves, not their own inventions, but the truth of the Gospel. Secondly, there are reliques of weaknesse, & imperfection, and darknesse in Gods children: they sometimes embrace a cloud in stead of a goddesse. I shall now propound to you some considerations which commend truth to us, and will be to us so many motives to love it, and use it.

First, true doctrine is to be preferr'd before false, because it is more firm and permanent. Plato saith in his first book de legib [...], [...]. We may pronounce the same of truth, [...]. Errours and heresies are ( [...]) short-liv'd. So much is abundantly confirm­ed by Ecclesiasticall histories.

Secondly, truth is of a prevailing nature. He that sat upon the white horse (Revel. 6.2.) had a bow, and a crow [...] [Page 13] was given to him, and he went forth conquering and to conquer. We are assured that Christ is risen from the dead (howsoever the Jews oppugne that truth) because all who at any time rise up against him, fall.

Thirdly, [...]. Truth is sweet (as Mercuries Priests were wont to say when they eat their figgs)▪ Fals­hood, lies, errours, heresies are of a contrary quality. We took sweet counsel together, and walked unto the house of God in company, Psal. 55.14. My meditation of him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the Lord, Psal. 104.34. How sweet are thy words unto my tast! yea sweeter th [...]n honey to my mouth. Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way, Psal. 119.103, 104. They shall heare my words, for they are sweet, Psal. 141.6▪

What's true may be bitter and unpleasant, but this is by accident, besides the nature of truth. The unpleasantnesse is not to be imputed to truth, but to the subject, the matter about which it is conversant: Who wish that this or that report may prove false, expresse no dislike of truth. They could wish at the same time the contrary was true. Those palates are vitiated, diseased, non-sensicall, which disrellish truth. Lactantius saith wittily and truly (Divin. Instit. epitom. c. 6.) Veritas licèt ad praesens sit insuavie, tamen cùm fructus ejus atque utilitas apparuerit, non edium pa­riet (ut ait Poeta) sed gratiam. All truth is amiable, but especially the truths of Christian religion. Evangelicall truths are Solomons (imrei-nongham) eloquia jucundi­tatis, Prov. 16.24. They are as the honey-combe, sweet to the soul, and healing to the bones. Truly the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for the eyes to behold the sunne, Eccles. 11.7. The Commeedians [...] (life is sweet) is a good comment upon this Text. But neither is that of the Psalmist to be pretermitted in its explication, Gods word is a light to our feet, and a lantern to our steps.

Fourthly, truth is the power of God to the conversion of souls.

[Page 14]Fifthly, truth is spiritually nutritive of the soul. Paint­ed fire will not burn. Meat received onely in a dream will not nourish. Imaginary truth, Chimera's will not refresh and feed the soul. Errour in the judgement is wont to side with perversnesse in the will and affections, wickednesse in life and conversation. Such is the destinie and lot of fals­hood. If any doctrines not faithfull should be able to ad­vance sanctitie, Papists tenents concerning a possibility of fulfilling the Law, and concerning merit, should be they. But we see it is quite otherwise: no sect in the world is more defective in purity of life. God, although wont often to work good out of evil, never cooperates with evil means which spoil him of his glory. The Gospel is the bread of life, pabulum animarum. As it is the power of God to the conversion of sinners, so likewise to the encrease of grace.

Sixthly, truth is of an healing nature.

2. In the next place, Gods Ministers preach what is wor­thy of all acceptation: deliver honourable truths, like­wise precious truths. They preach axiomes. [...], may be taken [...]. Then [...], shall be the same that [...]. Here's [...]. The words are capable likewise of another construction, viz. to be worthy of all acce­ptation shall not formally signifie the truth of the doctrine, that it is such as may safely be received, believed; but the comfortablenesse of it, the benefit and advantage from what signified by it.

What S. Paul here expresseth may in part be compre­hended by the affections of the Argives, when by the Ro­manes delivered from the tyranny of the Macedonians and Spartans, Quae gaudia, quae vociferationes fuerunt? quid florum in Consulem profuderunt? The Praeco in the quin­quenniall games at Nemea, is forced to pronounce the word Liberty, iterum iterúmque. It concern­eth not in re­gard of my pre­sent use of the story, whether the falling of that fowl out of the aire to the ground ought rather to be imputed to rarefaction, or vertiginousnesse together with astonish­ment, an effect thereof. Plutarch maketh mention of both these reasons in his Flami­nius, and clearly preferreth the latter in his Pompey. The aire was so dissi­pated [Page 15] with their acclamations, ut corvi fortuitò supervo­lantes, in stadium deciderent. They entertained that news of liberty as worthy of acceptation. 'Twas to be wished that thousands were not duller in their affections, when spirituall liberty is offered; when Christ offers to rescue us from our ghostly enemies, from those arch-tyrants sinne and Satan. Certainly this news ought to be welcomed with greater enlargement of affections, with fuller expres­sions of joy and thankfulnesse. Here's news worthy of all acceptation.

3. Truth and acceptablenesse concurre together in the doctrine of Gods faithfull Ministers. Truth and accepta­blenesse, I say, not truth and acceptance. When light came into the world, when truth was incarnated, sonnes of Be­lial preferred darknesse before light. Gospel-truths are worthy of all acceptation. That they are not at all times accepted, is to be imputed unto the unworthinesse of some to whom they are offered. There's defectivenesse in such Ministers, in whose doctrine truth, and worthinesse of ac­ceptation meet not together. Some out of pusillanimity, am­bition, or covetousnesse, wholly accommodate their do­ctrine to the spirits of vain men to whom they preach; al­together neglect truth, unlesse it serve as a stalking-horse to their own ends. Others busie themselves and disturb the world with empty and worthlesse curiosities. Luther justly complained of the School-men, that they had chan­ged uses into utrums. Some spider-wits spin out themselves into cobwebs.

There are some truths not worthy of all acceptation. Probable conjectures are much to be preferred before pal­pable falshood; certain truth before conjectures; acceptable truth before frivolous knowledge: what truths are worthy of all acceptation, ought to have the first place in our esti­mations, in our acceptations. Labour not for the meat which perisheth.

I may here adde an opportune caution. No one ought [Page 16] to arrogate such truth and acceptablenesse to his own judgement, as may fit it for a rule to be imposed upon o­thers. Learned D. Davenant in his little Treatise zealous for the peace of the Church, determines well, That the Pa­pists, should they not erre in fundamentals, yet were not to be received into union and communion, because they ob­trude upon others for a rule of doctrine and manners, the Popes feigned infallibility.

After this caution an advertisement will be seasonable. That we may be enabled to preach as we ought, truths worthy of all acceptation, knowledge is necessary. Truths statue (as I said) consisted of the Alphabet. Ignorant Do­ctours are unworthy deliverers of truths worthy all ac­ceptation. We speak what we know, saith our Saviour, Joh. 3.11: We know what we worship, Joh. 4.22. Those who take upon them to be Christs Ministers, must pro­pound their Master for a pattern. Study to shew thy self approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be a­shamed, rightly dividing the word of truth, 2. Tim. 2.15.

To divide rightly the word of truth requireth know­ledge, and knowledge sufficient for this task nowadayes prerequires industry. [...], &c. The spirit of prophesie rested upon many in the Primitive times; Eusebius saith, upon some in his age.I cannot as­sent to Miltia­des (quoted by Eusebius out of Apollinari­us) affirming that the gift of prophecying shall remain in each Church till Christs last coming. His words are these, [...]. See Euseb. Hist. Eccles. lib. 5. cap. 17. We have no warrant to expect it, after truth propagated, and suffici­ently confirmd by former miracles.

As we preferre the newest Philosophy, so the ancientest Divinity. We may justly suspect them of falshood and de­lusions who arrogate to themselves to utter Oracles, to teach by revelation.Lactant. de fal. sap. lib. 3. cap. 8. Anaxagoras complained, circumfa­sa esse omnia tenebri [...]. Empedocles, augustas esse sensuum semitas. Democritus, quasi in puteo quodam sic alto, ut fundus sic nullus, veritatem jacere de [...]ersam. The well [Page 17] is deep, and these wanted buckets wherewith to draw: we have a Doctour, who if we be not wanting to our selves will direct us into truth, but who is not wont to expend miracles where ordinary means may be had. We ought to be diligent in our private callings, sed labor est inhibe­re volantes.

I have heard it objected against our Clergy, that many of those who were more sober and temperate made it their chief work (proficere rather then prodesse) to inform themselves, more then to instruct others; to know, rather then to teach. Some by their ambition of being Seraphims, are hindered from being Angels; they are so much for il­lumination, that they are nothing at all for ministery. [...]. Fieri solet ut quicquid pauci assequi possunt, id in multorum reprehensionem incurrat. Pto­lem. Tetrab. lib. 1. cap. 1. See also Peti­scus in his E­pistle prefix'd to his Trigono­metrie, edit. 1. The authour of nuncius pro­pheticus, to­wards the end of his apolo­gy for humane learning. I easily believe what a learned Divine, when some al­leadg'd, that he bestowed his time in unprofitable studies, apologiz'd for himself, That they were not angry with him for his ignorance, but for his knowledge; that he ne­glected not what they knew, though he studied some things whereof they were ignorant: but conceive also, against the other extreme, that none ought to live to themselves; that 'tis not sufficient that men do no hurt, but that they are bound to do good: likewise, that they ought to per­form such offices to those committed to their charge, as their places require. Contemplation, when occasion of be­ing usefull to others is offered, especially if we have admit­ted of any engagement, must strike sail to practise.

Knowledge alone neither commends us to God, or good men. The devils know more then any mortall. Many of the school affirm, that the most glorious, the most illumi­nated of all the Angels fell, that which was the measure of the perfections, and durations of the rest, might be called avum. Lombard (sent. lib. 2. dist. 9.) saith, Aliqui An­geli de singulis ordinibus ceciderunt: de ordine namque su­periori Lucifer ille fuit, quo nullus dignior conditus fuit. Apostolus etiam principatus & potestates tenebrarum no­minat, ostendens de ordinibus illi [...] cecidisse. Any mans [Page 18] knowledge is unprofitable, whilest sequestrated for pride, and us'd onely in such wayes as are most subservient to vainglory.

'Tis a great question, whether or no those did well who published our Saviours miracles, when he had charged them to tell no man. Aquinas saith 2.2. q. 104. art. 4. Dominus curatis dixit, Videte nè quis sciat, non quaesi in­tendens eos per virtutem divini praecepti obligare; sed (si­cut Gregor. 19. moral. c. 18. à med.) servis suis se sequen­tibus exemplum dedit, ut ipsi quidem virtutes suas occul­tare desiderent, & tamen ut alii eorum exemplo proficiant, prodantur inviti.

I had now done with the first part of my Text, but that a direction to another mean conducible to the delivery of faithfull and most acceptable doctrine is very convenient. Religion must be joyned with knowledge. Many which abound in knowledge, for want of grace invent falshood, deliver not truth, much lesse truth worthy of all acceptati­on. Men enabled by religion, deliver saving truths more feelingly, more fully, and more easily.

These are like such as speak of a country or city which they have seen, which they have before their eyes: others discourse of spirituall things, as if they had seen them one­ly in maps. Experimentall knowledge availeth most to the efficacious preaching of Theologicall truths.

I have done with the testimony, This is a faithfull and true saying: I come now ad rem testatam, the doctrine it self, Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. I shall in the handling of these words onely give you sum­ma rerum capita, upon which as I mention them, you may expatiate by your larger meditations.

Mankind was in a lost condition, therefore is fitly re­presented unto us by the lost groat, the lost sheep, and the prodigall child, Luke 15. As in a lost condition, so in a slavish condition, captivated by sinne and Satan; which condition was so much the more wretched, in that we [Page 19] wanted due apprehensions of our own misery. We were not onely Satans captives, but mancipated to sinne, and re­bells against God. We were prone and headling into our own destruction, we stood in need of one to seek us, in that we went astray; of one to save us, in that we were captivated; one to pardon us, in that we had contumaci­ously rebelled against our Creatour. These three degrees of mans wretchednes are comprehended in the word sinners. But in this Text perhaps, such are called sinners, who are sensible of their sinnes. Christ onely saveth such as con­ceive themselves to stand in need of deliverance. He onely healeth such as stand in need of a Physician, that is, such as are affected with a sense of their maladies. I answer, to save hath a double acception; sometimes 'tis the same that to pay a ransome for another, or others; to give satisfacti­on for their offences: In this sense Christ may be said to save all, even such as are not affected with their need of a Saviour. Sometimes to save implyes somewhat more, to wit, after the ransome paid, to take out of the hand, out of the power of the enemy such as are ransomed. 'Tis said concerning Lot, that while he lingred, the men laid hold upon his hand, and the hand of his wife, and upon the hand of his two daughters, the Lord being mercifull unto him: and they brought him forth, and set him without the city, Gen. 19.16. Christ by the powerfull workings of his Spirit, haleth such as shall be saved out of the dominion of sinne and Satan, draweth them to the Father. Here is redemption applyed. None are thus saved, but such as are apprehensive of their naturall bondage. But the sense of our own wants, and such graces as are wrought into the hearts of all that shall be saved from eternall punishments, are to be attributed to Christs sufferings. Grace both pre­venting, and concomitant, and subsequent, that is, grace predisposing, and grace actually converting, and grace preserving us in a state of salvation, in Gods favour, were purchased by Christ. He came into the world to pay a suf­ficient [Page 20] price, for the redemption of all mankind; but to save efficaciously, such as should believe on him. I shall take sinners according to the three dimensions afore-men­tioned, and salvation in its largest extent. Christ came to save those who were in so forlorn a condition, that they were even past sense of their misery.

First, Christ came. Secondly, he came to save. Third­ly, he came to save sinners.

I shall premise a briefe explication of the words Christ and Jesus, and then endeavour to illustrate these proposi­tions: Christ is the same that anointed. He is called Mes­sias from the Chaldee participle [...] unctus, originally from the Hebrew verb [...] unxit. Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: the scepter of thy kingdome is a sce­pter of righteousnesse. Thou lovest righteousnesse, and hatest wickednesse: therefore God, thy God, hath anoint­ed thee with the [...] Oleum laetitiae magnitudo est oblectationis, Alsheach in locum. oyl of gladnesse [...] Above thy fellows, viz. per­fect righteous men that have not sinned. Alsheach ibid. Perhaps he cast this dart at Christ. What he saith is true, if applyed to Scribes and Pharisees, who in their own opinion were righteous. A little after, [...] Because that blessed one loved Israel more then the Heathen, and more then, Angels of ministery. Companions also may signifie, saith he, such as have not merited: [...] because thou shalt receive their part in the garden of Eden. [...] Myrrhe, and Aloes, and Cassia are garments of honour (or precious garments) of the soul of the righteous. Clemens Alexandrinus agreeably upon that in the 9. verse of the Psalme quoted, (Ʋpon thy right hand did stand the Queen in gold of Ophir) saith well; [...]. P [...]d [...] ­gog. l. 2. c. 10. above thy fellows, Psal. 45.6, 7.

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath an­ointed me to preach the Gospel to the poore; he hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at li­berty [Page 21] them that are bruis [...]d, to preach the acceptable yeare of the Lord, Esa. 61.1, 2. Luke 4.18, 19. Our Saviour (as Bishop Andrews thinks) was anointed onely according to his humane nature. I should rather think, that as he was [...], he was Christ as well as Jesus. All who at any time have been anointed by God, first, have been set apart for some office, some encounter (or agony); secondly, en­abled, at least in some measure, to perform what they were design'd for: thirdly, were fragrant in the nostrills even of God himself. Those who were anointed in regard of the first qualification, were sacred persons. By vertue of the second, they were rendred more nimble and chearfull in the performance of their duties▪ The third containeth their interest in others affections. From these resulteth gladnesse (or joy) in themselves. We may by gladnesse perhaps (not unseasonably) understand vigour of courage, and strength (like oyl) above the lees of fear, and the reach of danger; in the seventh comma of the 45. Palme. The 3, 4, and 5. verses of that Psalme, seem to inform us, whi­ther the anointing attributed to our Saviour alludes. He's such a champion against ignorance, sinne, Satan, hell; a­gainst all the power of darknesse, as cannot operam & ole­um perdere. Our Saviour according to his divine nature, by reason of infinite perfection, was uncapable of any ac­cession of abilities, yet was anointed, to wit, set apart (as I may speak with reverence) and dissign'd for the Media­tourship, by the Senate of the sacred Trinity so ordering. In our nature assumed he suffered for our sinnes, so per­form'd the office of a Priest. Illuminating and sanctifying grace, which he purchased for us by his sufferings, are due­ly ascrib'd to him, and speak him a Prophet and a King. Christ who according to his divine nature, had essentiall dominion over all creatures, as God-man was appointed the heire of all things. According to his humane nature he was anointed with the holy Ghost. He was anointed in his two natures, according to severall capacities, but so as [Page 22] he was but one Priest, one Prophet, one King, one Media­tour. God the Sonne was active, the humane nature pas­sive in the union, yet both united are one Christ. Christs performances for his Church, with their fragrancy and sa­vour of rest, refresh both God and man. God the Father pronounceth concerning him, This is my beloved Sonne in whom I am well pleased. Christ was inaugurated at his baptisme, but anointed inAbsurdissi­mum est ut cre­damus Christū cùm jam tri­ginta annorum esset, accepisse Spiritum san­ctum, cùm Jo­hannes à quo baptizatus est, spiritu sancto repletus fuerit jam indè ab u­tero matris, tametsi modo longè inferiori quàm Christus. Aug. de Trin. lib. 15. c. 26. the instant of the union of his two natures. He was Christ the Lord at his birth, Luke 2.11. The Lords Christ, when seen by Simeon, Luke 2.26. Christ had for some years a Patent-dormient. Kings, Priests, and Prophets were not depos'd or degraded in time of sleep, howsoever the functions of their offices were inter­mitted.Alioqui enim Christo ab initio Spiritus vel omnino non da­tus, vel ad mensuram da­tus fuisset, quod negat ejus prae­cursor. Estius in sentent l. 2. distinct. 14. sect. 2. His humane nature received a fulnesse of grace, as soon as united to the divine. Some object against this truth what we reade Luke 2.52. Jesus encreased in wis­dome and stature, & in favour with God and man. He en­creased in grace & wisdome, if not in himself, yet in others, among whom he was conversant, and whom he instructed. He encreas'd in grace and wisdome, if not really, yet in the opinion of others. He acquir'd some knowledge acceptable to God and man. As he grew in stature, so for some time in the exercise of wisdome; and in favour really with men; and as they would conceive, with God. He grew in the exercise of wisdome and grace, in the sight both of God and man. That I may expresse what I conceive to be the mind of the Text, The use and exercise of his wisdome as it was more enlarg'd, became more lovely in the sight of God and man.

Maimonides noteth (Halacoth Melachim Perek 1.) That no King but the first of the family was anointed; as Saul, as David: or upon strife, as Salomon by reason of Adonias, Joas for Athalia, Joachas for his elder brother Joachim: but Joshua the next king to Moses was not an­ointed. Christ a spirituall King, a King that reigneth in mens affections, by the appointment of God the Father; [Page 23] the A and Ω of that kind, moreover who hath not his kingdome without contradiction and strife, was according to Maimonides principles not unduly anointed. Christ as a King, as a Priest, and as a Prophet, was anointed with the oyl of gladnesse above his fellows. He was each of these [...]. So much is plentifully expressed in the Ep [...]stle to the Hebrews. As a Priest he farre surpassed legall priests. Heb. in 7, 8, 9. and 10, chapters.

The twelve Patriarchs, Exod. 28. have each of them his precious stone inscribed with his name, in the brestplate of judgement, a symbole of the Church under the Law; Le­vie hath the Calcedonie, Judah the Smaragd: But Revel. 21. in the foundation of the new Jerusalem, the Church under the Gospel, Levie hath the Smaragd, and Judah the Calcedon. (The tribes have their stones in Aarons brest­plate according to their births.) Our Saviours Calcedon in Levie's place, telleth us that he hath put an end to Legal sacrifices. If Leviticall sacrifices could have expiated sinnes, it had not been necessary that the Priesthood should have been translated. As a King he farre excelled all who were types of him both in power and honour. Alsheach inter­preteth what is spoken Psal. 45. concerning the Messias, to be meant of Israel, and by their companions, understand­eth heathens' and Angels of ministery, &c. Sure we are, that Christ was & is exalted above all earthly Monarchs, and above the glorious Angels. These are but ministring spirits: None of them hath dominion over mens hearts. God said to none of them at any time, Sit thou at my right hand till I make thine enemies my footstool. God spake in times past by the Prophets, but poured out him­self in the latter times once for all by his Sonne. Christs propheticall office is abundantly more communicable, then either of his other.. No one merely a creature could by sa­crificing himself expiate mans sinnes; or yet oversway mens perverse affections: but what light and information Christ imparts to any dark soul, he may communicate by [Page 24] ministers, angels or men. Yet the full revelation to be made of Evangelicall mysteries was reserv'd for Christ, as prerogative to his Propheticall office. What Christ per­form'd as a Priest, and what he performs as a King, is com­petible to none of his creatures. Had not his sufferings been vigorated by his divine nature, they could not have pre­vailed against our sinnes, (by which we offended an infinite God,) before the tribunall of divine justice. Neither can any creature create grace in our hearts: no earthly scepter can sway our wills and affections. These are preheminen­cies of Christs Kingly office. What Christ perform'd or performs as a Prophet (except that he is the fountain of truths revealed) is not impossible to a creature. All truths which can be revealed to any, may be communicated to the mind by the ministery of angels, may be deriv'd by the eare, or the eye, from these or other rationall creatures. Christ (beside that he is the authour of all truths according to his divinity) deferred many truths till the fulnesse of time, and then as God and man delivered them, that so he might exalt even his humane nature, above all Prophets who were before or under the Law, his Ministers, and but forerunners and types of truth to be incarnated. Christ by himself, and his disciples reveal'd some mysteries hidden from the beginning of the world,Where a pre­diction accor­ding to the plain literall sense, was in the intention of the holy Ghost to be oftner fulfilled then once, the Pro­phet which foretold it, did alwayes distinctly fore-see the event in the first place foretold, or the first fulfilling of his own prediction. There is not the like necessity for us to believe or think that he had the like distinct fore-sight or apprehension of those events, in which one and the self same prophecy was the second, third, or fourth time to be fulfilled. Of such predicti­ons as were but once to be fulfilled, & that according to the plain literall sense, this af­firmative is universally true; (The Prophets had alwayes a distinct knowledge or ap­prehension of the summe or substance of the events which are said to come to passe, that their saying might be fulfilled.) D. Jackson in his book entituled, The knowledge of Christ Jesus, chap. 16. explain'd many be­fore uttered. Christ was in densitaribus sylvae, in the Old Testament. When God gave the Law on mount Sinai, there were (saith Salvianus) nebulae Deo plena. There were nebulae Christo plena in the time of the Law: but in the [Page 25] fulnesse of time the Sunne of righteousnesse broke forth, dispell'd legall mists, and ceremonies, conferr'd upon tis the abundance of the blessing of the Gospel, deliver'd to S. John a [...] of Daniels prophecies, which concern'd the last times of the world, by which they were much il­lustrated. Plutarch reports (in the life of Lysander) that the priests of Apollo's temple at Delphos, subservient to Lysanders ambition of the kingdome of Lacedemonia, and what plotted by him and his faction, gave out, That they kept secret books of very ancient Oracles, which they themselves durst not touch nor handle, neither might any man read them, unlesse he was begotten of the seed of A­pollo, who should come after a long time, and make his birth appear unto the Priests that kept these papers, and that by some secret mark and token, which they had a­mongst them: and thereby being known for Apollo's sonn, he might then take the books, and reade the ancient reve­lations and prophesies of the same. Apollo's priests seduc'd by covetousnesse, abus'd truth into falshood, by misapply­ing it. A true prediction touching the sonne of the onely wise God, to be born of a virgin, and his preheminency in unfolding old prophecies, and adding new, receiv'd from Jews, or some of the Sybills, or some prophet among the Gentiles (as was Balaam) was made the platform of this fiction.

Secondly, Christ had yet advantage incomprehensibly greater, then what hitherto mention'd above other pro­phets, viz. according to his divine nature was the donour of the spirit of prophecy. Where God the Father is said to have spoken to the fathers ( [...]) by piece-meal, (divine truths reveal'd to the Prophets con­cerning Christ, were not reveal'd altogether) and after di­verse manners: God the Sonne who is [...], the eternal word and wisdome of the Father, cannot be conceived to be excluded. The three sacred persons equally con­curre to all the works ad extra ascrib'd to each. Al­though [Page 26] Christ was not in the times of the Old Testa [...] the Fathers vice-gerent in the revelation of divine tru [...]s, as under the New, yet he also according to his divinity then spake to the Prophets. [...]. Homer. Iliad. [...]. No creature how sagacious soever, howsoever improv'd by industry and experience, (sith God can in each moment change the course of nature) can cer­tainly foreknow, unlesse inform'd by divine revelation any thing which may properly be said to be future (Gods at­tributes, as they are by naturall reason known to be im­mutable, so their duration is coexsistent) much lesse hu­mane actions, or what is dispens'd solely by divine provi­dence, without mediation of secundary causes. Prophecy strictly taken, is a prediction of what contingent.

There's vates praeterito­rum with Dr. Jackson in his Knowledge of Christ Jesus, chap. 17. with Adrian in his Isagog. in S. Scriptur [...]m, Prophecy is of things past, present, or to come. Moses by the spirit of prophecy wr [...]e about the creation. See also 1 Sam. 10.2. 2. Kings 6.12. Chalchas in Homer knew ( [...]) Things present, future, and past. Elisha prophe­cyed of things present, 2. Kings 5.26. [...]. See reverend Mr. Boyse upon Chrysost. in Gen. Hom. 2. p. 7. [...] is the same that [...] (in Euseb. demonstrat. Evang. lib. 5. procemio) one that prophecy­eth. That [...] is oft the same that [...], is clear'd by Exod. 7.1. (as transla­ted by Onkelos, (And Jehovah said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a Master (or Prince) to Pharaoh; and Aaron thy brother shall be thine interpreter.) Molinaeus his vates, lib. 1. c. 4. Scultetus his deliciae evangel. c. 7. and authours quoted by H. Stephen in his Lexicon upon the word [...]; but if it ought alwayes (as the Lexicographer now prais'd conceiveth) to be interpreted according to that notion, I cannot see why Prophets should be distinguished from other, Gods Ministers (Eph. 4.11.) who were undeniably antistites Dei & sacrorum. The most common use of the word Prophet, (besides consent of authours; whom I might in great plenty and with little labour quote to this purpose) assureth us that the preposition [...] as an ingredient of [...], hath for the most part its proper signification. Antistites fa [...]orum, with Heathens were called prophetae, because some of them were the mouths of Oracles. We see how pro­phetae by a familiar Synechdoche might be enlarged to the full signification of Antistes. Epimenides is entitled a prophet by Paul in his Epistle to Titus, chap. 1. Besides that he is reported to have been a prophet (properly so called) by Tully (de Divin [...]t. lib. 1.) he might also deserve the name in that [...] (which Dioge­nes arrogates to himself in Lucian, [...] signifying a foreteller of things future, as well as [...], might be used for a Poet, (ordinary practise of authentick authours sufficiently warranting) who much more properly might be cal­led [...]. Poets feign'd themselves Enthusiasts. To relate what's past and contingent without aid from [...]emory and history, by a Metaphor hath frequently the [Page 27] name of prophecy, as not lesse difficult, and proceeding from the same principles. Let them sh [...]w the former things what they be, or declare us things for to come, that we may know ye are gods, Esa. 41.22, 23. Tria proposuerat Porphyrius de divinis operibus: Primum ad haec anima [...] esse caus [...]m instrumentalem: Secundum, animam quandoque esse cau­sam principalem▪ Tertium, animam posse ita esse ex aquo concausam, ut ex ea, Spiritúque divino, tertia quaedam species substantiae, vel subsistentiae fiat. Jambl. de myst. c. 28.

Ait animam quandoque generare potestat [...]m, essenti­âmque daemoniacam imaginantem futura, ibid.

Porphyrius ait, Vaticinium esse passionem q [...]ndam phantasiae subortam, vel ex cogitationibus nostris, vel in­stinctu corporalis in nobis naturae, vel similiter incide [...] ­tem ut & phreneticis contingit vaticinari. Ad hoc autem adhibet signa, quod in statu vaticinis agit quidem imagi­natio vehementer, sensus autem interim [...]coupantur, & cu­hibentur: Item quod suffumigationes adhibentur divina­turo, videlicet ad phantasiam afficiondam. Item [...]cati­ones ad eandem affectionem incitand [...]. Item quòd non omnes, sed juvenes simpliciorés (que) ad hoc idonei sunt. Jambl. de Myster. c. 29.

Porphyrius conjectabat affectionem quandam nostrae na­turae vel corporalem, vel animalom ad vaticinium conferre praecipuè, ex eo quod qui advocabant in hominem vatici­nium, gestabant lapillos quosdam, at (que) herbas, ligabánt (que) nodos sacros, itémque ligata solvebant: mutabant quoque proposita in eis, qui talia ab illis acceperant, & ex malis meliora reddebant: ibid.

Idem ait, Non esse contemnendam artem, quae ex certis vaporibus ad ignem sub opportunis stellarum influ [...]cibus fa­cit deorum idola in a [...]re protinus apparentia similia quo­dammodo diis, & habentia similē aliquam efficaciam: ibid.

Porphyrius ait, Idolorum factores in fabrica observare coelestium cursum, dicentes, quo potissimùm coelestium cur­rente, & cum quo, vel quibus concurrente vaticinia vera [Page 28] provenient, aut falsa: item quae ibi fiunt, utrùm significa­tiva sint, effectiváve, vel contra significationis efficacia vacua. cap. eodem.

There be some perfumes prescrib'd by the writers of naturall magick, which procure pleasant dreams; and some others (as they say) that procure propheticall dreams; as the seeds of flax, fleawort, &c. Thus the Lord Verulam in his naturall history, cent. 10. exper. 933.

That the Teraphim (mentioned in Genesis, and Judges, and Hosea) were us'd in divination, is conspicuous from S. Austine in's 94. question upon Genesis, from Aben-ezra upon the 31. of Genesis, and from the names by which the word is translated. We find in the Septuagint, in Ho­sea, [...] the same word by which they interpret Urim, in the [...]8. of the first of Samuel; in Zachary [...] with Aquila the Teraphim are [...]. In the Tar­gum of Hosea, [...] declarantes. In the 4. of Hosea, verse 12. My people ask counsel at their stocks, and their staffe declareth unto them. A wisard is call'd [...], Levit. 20.6.27. and a living creature whose mouth, after it had been put in the mouth of the wisard, foretold future things, [...] by Jews from [...] to know. The devil and his agents arro­gated to themselves the faculty of foreknowing and decla­ring future things, and many were so fond as to believe them. Such future events as proceeded in an ordinary course from celestiall and sublunary bodies, the devil might foretell by his insight into nature: but predictions of this sort are improperly term'd prophecy. He might discover some future contingent things by knowing the Scriptures; as that Alexander the great should subdue the Persians. He might foretell also what God revealed to him: the deaths perhaps of some persons, because God had appointed him their executioner. Sometimes he gave his Oracles accor­ding to conjecturall knowledge, as taking notice of humane affairs; their counsells and contrivances. [...]. (Aeschi­lus in his [...].) sent to Dodona (in Aeschilus his Prometheus) [...]. He dissembled his ignorance oft by silence, oft by ambiguous answers. He [Page 29] fasten'd his predictions to materiall symbols, as accommo­date to mans earthy affections, and alienating the mind from what spirituall. In [...], now mentioned, and other his delusions, would have the positures of the starres observed, that so he might induce men to worship the host of heaven. But these andSee Clemens Alexand. in's Admonit. ad Gentes. Euseb. his prooem. to his first book dem [...]st. Evang. Strozzius Ci­gogn. de spirit. & incant. part. 1. lib. 3. c. 2. other such his arts settle far be­low prophecy. Holy Scriptures altogether direct us to God as the fountain of those precious gifts conferr'd upon Prophets, and the sole object of our praise and thankful­nesse due for them. S. John (Apoc. 1.10.) heard behind him a great voice as of a trumpet. These words behind me, as M. Brightman observes, are wont to shadow out the free mercy of God, which recalleth us being carelesse, not re­garding, negligent. So in Isaiah chap. 30.21. Thy ears shall heare a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk in it. Jewish Doctours derogate from that freedome, according to which God communicates himself, by the se­verall conditions which they feigne to be prerequired, that one should become a Prophet. Their first is ( [...]) a naturall disposition, to wit, a good temperature of body, even from the conception. See Maimon. in More Ne­vochim, p. 2. c. 36. Secondly, that the party be ( [...]) amply accomplished with wit and fortunes. Abarbinel (in his preface to his Comments upon Esay) requires de­scent or pedigree elevating above the vulgar [...] Dixêre (Rabbini nostri) beatae memoriae non quiescere fa­cit sanctus benedictus ille shechinam suam, nisi super fa­milias prosapiatas quae in Israele. Esay (saith he) was of the seed royall, and exceeded others in the spirit of pro­phesie by virtue of his family. Thirdly, (I have learn'd what [...] is from [...] (translated by Bechai from the originall in Arabick in­to Hebrew in a Tractate of it inscribd [...] c. 4. I find that a Pharisee is one that cele­brates a jubile in his counte­nance, but mourneth in­wardly; his heart is excee­dingly large, but so as his soul is very humble. This I conceive to be the meaning of [...] That he is shie of whatsoever is wont to divert from the practise of piety, is intimated in the words following: Ram­bam (de fundament. Legis, c. 7. parag. 2.) prescrib [...] to such as would be candidates for the spirit of prophecy, sanctimony and abstinency from commerce with the world. [...] spiritus S. vociferatur, [...]di coetum improborum, & cum impiis non habitabo. Thus R. I­saac in Tauchuma. fol. [...]6. [...]) a se­questration [Page 30] from common and profane custome of life. Fourthly,See Bava Bathra, cap. 1. Jachiad. prae­fat. to his comment. up­on Daniel. ( [...]) congruity of place: this they deny to be found any where but in Judea. Fifthly, ( [...]) opportunity of time. All ages (say they) are not accommodate for the receiving of prophecyes. Sixthly, ( [...]) a divine disposition, that is, the free gift and suggestion of God, without which the other conditions are by them granted to remain impotent and unfruitfull.

We may almost by one glance upon sacred Scriptures, perceive that the greater part of these conditions were not common to all prophets there mentioned. Jambh thus is Orthodox: Verum namque vaticinium (De mysteriis cap. 28. saith he) non est naturae passibilis, & aliquo corpore, loco, tempore clausa, sed ab his omnibus absolutae, ut queat quocunque in loco vel tempore facta, pariter simpliciterque prospicere: True prophecy is not of a passible nature, cloystred up in some certain body, place or time, but free from all these, that it may foresee alike things done in any place, and at any time. Gregory and Thom. Aquinas [...]. Ait Gregorius in homil. Pentecostes: Implet (scilicet Spiritus Sanctus) cit haraedum puerum, & Psalmistam facit: Implet pasto­rem armentarium, sycomoros vellicantem, & prophetam facit. Non ergo requiritur aliqua dispositio praecedeus ad prophetiam, sed dependet ex sola voluntate Spiritus sancti, de quo dicitur 1. ad Cor. 12. Haec omnia operatur n [...]s atque idem Spiritus, dividens singulis prout vult: Thom. Aquin. 2.2. Qu. 172. Art. 3.

As it is clear that God determined not the dispensation of prophecyes to circumstances of time and place, nor yet to mens naturall tempers or fortunes; so likewise that the spirit of prophecy found Balaam mingled with malice and covetousnesse, and Saul out of envy persecuting David, how abstracted soever they were from these vices whilest they prophecyed. I acknowledge that Gods Prophets, as many of them as were sanctified, could not but be emanci­pated from the tyranny of vile affections, but moreover had all corruptions settled, which might hinder them from [Page 31] attending to God speaking to them. God did not alwayes immediately work the latter of these effects in their minds. Elisha (2. Kings 3.15.) called for a minstrell, to dispell his grief (See R. D. Kimchi upon the place. say some Hebrew Doctours) for the losse of Eli­jah, from whose translation till the then present occasion, the spirit of prophecy (See R. D. Kimchi upon the place. say the same authours) rested not upon him: to compose his spirits, (See R. D. Kimchi, and Ralbag upon the place. say some,) much mov'd with indignation at Jehoram. See also 1. Sam. 10.5. chap. 16.17. Tacitus saith of the Jews (Hist. lib. 5.) Sacerdotes eorum tibiis, timpanísque, concinebant. Grotius upon the last of the Scriptures quoted, thus commenteth. Marinus de Proclo [...] [...]; Apol­lonius de Miris, [...]. ubi & alia ad hanc rem. Pythagore [...]s moris fuit, ait Quinti­lianus lib. 9. cap. 4. cùm somnum peterent, ad lyram priùs lenire mentes, ut si quid fuisset turbidarum cogitationum componerent. Plato likewise in's laws attributes the same vertue to musick. Adde that of Stesichorus, [...]. See also Butler in the Preface to his principles of Musick. As Elisha's mind might be set­tled and quieted by Musick, so also rays'd up to an expe­ctation of God communicating himself.

Thirdly, Christ knew all truths from all eternity, de­pended not upon any for information about those truths which he delivered.

Fourthly, whereas Prophets and Prophetesses in times past receiv'd divine truths after divers manners, Christ ac­cording to his humane nature, in all probability, was one­ly inform'd that way which is most perfect, viz. by the word of the Lord, instill'd into his mind when he was a­wake: That the contents of this reason may become fa­cile, 'tis necessary that I enumerate the severall wayes, af­ter which God revealed himself to Prophets under the Law, and before the Law, and explain some of them. God spake to Elijah by a still small voice, 1. Kings 19.12. [Page 32] to Samuel with a lowder, 1. Sam. 3. (Samuel by reason of this voice presented to his outward sence, was esteemed a Prophet throughout Israel.) Such under the New Testa­ment was that by which he signified that Christ was his welbeloved Sonne, in whom he was well pleased, Matth. 3. and that which was heard at our Saviours transfigura­tion, Matth. 17. and another mentioned in the 12. of John. This was called Bathcol, filia vocis, and was gradus nuus [...] ex gradibus spiritus sancti. This way of revealing himself God used frequently after pro­phecy, and Urim and Thummim ceas'd, in the time of the second Temple, as Paulus Fagius relates upon Pirke avoth. The still small voice, and lowder, of which I have spoken, were in all probability produc'd by God, without the con­course of any creature. God long before the Law given to Moses, prophecyed to Hagar by the audible voice of an Angel, that her sonne should be spread into a great nation, Gen. 21.18. God after this way severall times reveal'd himself (under the Law) in the Old Testament, to Zacha­rias and the Virgin Mary in the New. God sometimes spake to his Prophets by outward visions. By fire burning the bush, but not consuming it, Exod. 3.2. signified to Mo­ses, that the Israelites, though heavily afflicted, should not be utterly destroyed by the Egyptians. Externall voyces and visions by which things future were presignified, were created by God, or produc'd by the ministery of Angels. Visions might, many of them be carv'd in wood, stone, other matter; more of them (yet not all) be painted. It's impossible to engrave fire, or to paint sounds. The hand-writing upon the wall, which Daniel read, supplied the place of propheticall speech. Each propheticall speech might be exhibited in letters. God spake sometimes by U­rim and Thummim, on the breast of the high Priest. Con­cerning this kind of prediction, see Lev. 8.8. Numb. 27.21. 1. Sam. 28.6. Josephus [...], l. 3. c. 9. A­ben-ezra, and Menachem upon Exod. 28. Jarehi and A­ben-ezra [Page 33] upon Levit. 8.8. Maimon. about the implements of the Sanctuary, cap. 10. sect. 11, 12. Ainsworth upon Exod. 28. Empereur in Mosis Kimchi [...] ad scienti­am, lib. 2. cap. 7. Whether or no answers given by Urim and Thummim, and the writing upon the wall in Belshazzars palace, were immediately from God, or by the mediation of Angels, is conceal'd from us. The two Tables of the Law given to Moses on mount Sinai, were written with the finger of God, Exod. 31.18. If we compare with this text that of the Psalmist in the 8. Psalme, vers. 3. (When I consider the heavens the work of thy fingers) we shall conceive with Maimonides in the 66. chap. of the first part of his More Nevochim, that the Law was made the same way that the heavens. He tells us how: All naturall things are called the work of God: but more especially what be­gan by creation: such was the Law, saith the same authour. I shall produce his words as construed by Buxtorfius; Quemadmodum stellas non per instrumentum aliquod in coelo collocavit & existere fecit, sed per primam suam vo­luntatem. Sic quoque Scriptura illa fuit scripta per pri­mam ipsius voluntatem, sine aliquo instrumento. (This his conceit I find countenanc'd by the fifth chap. of Pirke Avoth.) I shall adde his quotation of the Talmud to the same purpose; Nosti, quod in hunc sensum in Mischnâ legitur; decem res creatae sunt inter vesperas, & ex eorum numero quoque est Scriptura Tabularum; ex quo colligi­mus, extra controversiam, & in confesso apud omnes semper fuisse, Scripturam tabularum esse sicut reliqua opera cre­ationis, quemadmodum in Mischna exposuimus. Cabba­lists say, that God created the world in order to the Law. In the creation of the world the holy Ghost moved upon the waters; when the Law was to be engraven upon the tables of stone, God descended upon the mount: The same finger which wrought the book of nature, wrote the Law: The world's potentia divina, the Law voluntas Dei protensa: The world's a compendious expression or copy of Gods [Page 34] power, the Law of his will; this in letters, that in hiero­glyphicks.Who conceive from Act. 7.53. Gal. 3.19. Heb. 2.2. the Law was spoken by Angels, (besides that the Syriack interpreter Acts 7.53. hath [...] Per manum mandati angeli, and by this Angel meaneth Christ, as may be gather­ed from his translation of Gal. 3.19. where he hath [...] angels, in that angels are distinguished from a Mediatour, who as he thought was no other but Christ; neither could more angels then one, un­lesse because they organiz'd the aire, or clouds, or some other body, be said to pronounce the Law) may see Heinsius upon the first of those texts. Maimon. also telleth us (in his More Nevochim, par. 2. c. 41.) [...] that a Prophet is oft called an Angel. There are mentioned in the acts of the Nicene Council, part. 1. lib. 1. c. 4. [...]. No created knowledge was the midwife to either of these births: the writing as well as what written was immediately from God. God sometimes reveal'd to his Pro­phets what should come to passe by (species) resemblances impress'd in their minds. These were of two sons; are resembled by those which convey sensible objects to the eare, and the eye, and are called vision and the word of the Lord. The Prophets were the mouth of God, and eyes of the Church. Vision by Hebrews is called [...] (Dan. 10.7.) [...] and [...], in Greek [...]. The word of the Lord in Hebrew is [...] See Onkelus upon Gen. 20.3. in Chalde [...], in Greek [...], in Latine verbum, (sermo, if we pre­ferre the term which best pleaseth Cyprian.) The word of the Lord is called [...] the spirit of the Lord, Ezech. 11.5. and by Onkelus translated [...] the spirit of prophecy. [...] the word of the Lord, Ezech. 14.2. by Onkelus is interpreted [...] the word of pro­phecy. Vision, as likewise the word of the Lord, when it de­nounceth judgements against any people or person [...] the burden of the Lord, Jer. 23.33 in Jo­nathans tar­gum is [...] prophecy in the name of the Lord. is cal­led ( [...]) a burden; each of them when delivered in sleep [...] a dream; and every dream sent into the mind from God, if predictive of future matters, (that is, [...] Prophecy although it properly signifie (as the notation of the word intimateth) a prediction in outward words, is in the mind ratione principii. Thom. Aquin. 2.2. q 171. art. 1. concludes that prophecy first and principally consists in knowledge, se­cundarily in speech. prophecy coming in a dream, as R.D. Kim­chi upon Jer. 23.27.) is found under one of these. The hand of the Lord Jehovah, Ezech. 8.1. is (as Kimchi well [Page 35] glosseth) [...] the spirit of pro­phecy as it cometh in its strength. Each propheticall in­fluence may be called the spirit of prophecy, and the spirit of the Lord, as because it is the gift of God, so in that it's fitly resembled by wind: moreover in the first respect may be termed Spiritus sanctus, in the other Spiritus sacer. On the day of Pentecost when the Apostles were to be en­dued with the gift of tongues, there came a sound from heaven, as of a mighty rushing wind. Influences, such as that which was called the word of the Lord, enabled the Apostles to speak with severall languages. These, like wind, could not be contained. Balaam could not but speak what God said unto him. When the spirit rested upon the seventy Elders, they prophecyed and did not cease, Numb. 11.25. [...] the Spirit, is interpreted by [...] the spirit of prophecy, in Onkelus his paraphrase upon that Comma. There's vehemency in the spirit of prophecy, which renders it like a rushing wind. Nescit tarda moli­mina Spiritus sanctus. Those words of Ezechiel chap. 8. The hand of the Lord fell upon me, may be understood concerning the spirit of prophecy, as it comprehends vision and the word of the Lord. The prophet affords instances of both reveal'd to him, in the three chapters next follow­ing. And Villalpand tells us, Spiritum Dei cadere; there is irruere, aut lapsum esse desuper cum vi, & energiâ mo­re fulguris▪ quo illuminatus simul atque excitatus est pro­pheta, non secus quàm si fulgure repentè tangeretur. Sui­das saith concerning [...] (which God promiseth, Ezech. 11.19. and elsewhere) that it is not the holy Spi­rit, but [...]. I may say the like concerning the spirit of prophecy, but with this difference; that is of the appetitive facultie, this of the understanding. Prophecy may be called [...] according to both respects mentioned. I adhere rather to the first as the reason of the name. [...], majestas divina, which rested upon Pro­phets with the Jews frequently is [...]. And the [Page 36] spirit of Jacob revived, ( [...]) Gen. 45.27. in Jarchie's comment, is interpreted by [...] The resting of the spirit of prophecy upon Prophets is called descensio, Quan­doquidem genus humanum in infimo loco, in­fimóque gradu constitutum est respectu Dei: ipse autem Deus in supremo gradu, non qui­dem ratione loci, sed ratione essentiae, maje­statis, & potentiae, ideò quando ipsi placet sapientiam largiri alicui, vel prophetiae do­num super quosdam ex nobis effundere, vo­catur mansio prophetiae super aliquo, vel ha­bitatio majestatis, & praesentiae divinae in loco aliquo ( [...]) Descensio: & è con­trario, ablatio prophetiae ab homine, aut re­cessio majestatis divinae è loco quopiam ( [...]) Ascensio. Maimon. in More Nevoch. part. 1. c. 10. quievit super eo divina majestas. In Onkelus his paraphrase by ( [...]) & quievit Spiritus sanctus super Jacobo; in Jonathan by ( [...]) & quievit Spiritus prophetiae ( [...] Non quiescit shechinah nisi super forti. See Elias in his Tisby upon the word. See al­so Maimon. in [...], chap. 7. sect. 1. and 5. The places of the Talmud, &c. quoted by Vorstius upon these of Maimonides. to wit, which had forsaken him by reason of his mourning for the sup­posed death of his son. These glosses upon Gen. 45.27. unlesse we conceive the authours of them, all, or some of them heterodoxicall, will perswade that shechina ruach hakkodesh, and the spirit of prophecy, had sometimes with Hebrews the same significati­on. I shall adde another authour for further confirmation. Our Do­ctours (saith Elias Tisbites upon the word [...]) call the holy Ghost shechinah, because it resteth upon the Prophets. In the authours words [...] In the Gemara of Massecheth Joma, cap. 1. [...] and [...] are reckoned as two of five distinct ornaments in which the second temple came short of the first. It's there enquired why the word by which God signified that he would be glorified in the second temple, Hag. 1.8. should suffer an Apocope of He, written [...] rather then [...] (and I will be glorified)? The answer there given is this, [...]

These five things were wanting by which the first and [Page 37] the second Sanctuary differed, & these are they, Arca cum propitiatorio & Cherubim, Ignis coelestis, Majestas divi­na, Spiritus sanctus, Ʋrim & Thummim. In Shulchan Aruch, under the radix [...] the five things mentioned by Talmudists, in the place quoted are thus distinguished. [...] Arca, operculum, & Cherubim, una res: Ma­jestas divina, res secunda: Spiritus sanctus, qui & prophe­tia, res tertia: Ʋrim & Thummim, res quarta: ignis de coelo, res quinta. The same are reckon'd up, but in other order, by R. D. Kimchi upon Haggai 1.8. The first is o­mitted by Rasi upon that text, who yet quoteth Massecheth Joma. There is nothing in these testimonies (howsoever they have been misinterpreted) repugnant to what I have asserted. It's clear that by shechinah they mean the glory of God appearing between the cherubims. I see not but that according to the minds of Hebrew Doctours, God may be said to dwell or to abide, wheresoever he declareth him­self by any supernaturall effect; as in the bush in which he appeared to Moses; or mount Sinai, where he gave the Law; in the first Sanctuary; in the minds of Prophets, and of all sanctified persons. Nothing's more usuall, then that the effect which manifesteth divine power, should be called shechinah. Divine abode or dwelling, in this notion is abstracted from brevity and longinquity of time (un­lesse with Ramus and his sectatours, we comprehend eter­nity within the latitude of time, as common to all durati­ons) is indifferent to all times howsoever extended.Shechinah properly signi­fieth abode or dwelling any where; but tropically that which abideth or resteth in any place, and [...] any extraordi­nary effect of divine power, such a glorious symbole of Gods presence and power hath the Name of God. Exod. 24.10. And they saw the God of Israel, &c. is in Onkelus his Targum, And they saw the glory of the God of Israel; in the Seventy, [...] And they saw the place where the God of Israel stood. She­chinah is the same that Gods presence, by supernaturall manifestation of himself. As shechinah call'd the spirit of [Page 38] the Lord (Ezech. 11.5. and with Jews commonly the holy spirit) is said to have rested upon certain persons, and in certain places; so the spirit of glory and of God, is said to rest upon those, who are reproched for the name of Christ, 1. Pet. 4.14. Gods glory is manifested by those gracious effects of his spirit, wherewith he supporteth those, who suffer for his sake. The heart of a believer reproched for the name of Christ, is (as Onkelus paraphraseth upon Gen. 28.17. in which Comma, the place in which Jacob slept, is called the house of God, and the gate of heaven) no private place, but a place wherein God taketh pleasure; and over against this place is the gate of heaven. [...] (which Beza did not apprehend) may be an exege­sis of [...]. The Syriack Interpreter saw as much, with whom [...], is con­strued, [...] Quia Spiritus gloriosus Dei quiescit super vos. See Esay 4.5. and D. Kimchi upon that text. [...] In the [...]e words of Kimchi, the cloud which rested over the Tabernacle, and that which in the Sanctuary of the Temple, as al­so one feigned about to over-shadow by day the houses of Jews eminent above the vulgarin wisdom & religion, in the times of restaurati­on and refreshment, is called a cloud of glory. A cloud in which God appeared to the Is­raelites (Exod. 16.10.) is called (in Hebrew [...] in Onke­lus [...]) the glory of the Lord. The clouds by which God was manifested in the Sanctuary, is call'd by Hebrews Shechinah. God promiseth Exod. 29.43. that the tabernacle should be sanctifi­ed by his glory. And vers. 45. that he would dwell among the children of Israel; (in On­kelus his translation, that he would settle his shechinah in the midst of the children of Israel.

We cannot doubt, but that the spirit of glory, in that place of S. Peter quoted, if we appeal to Jews as Inter­preters, will prove the same that shechinah. Gods manife­station of his presence in his Church upon earth for a de­teermined time, is called [...] (Apoc. 21.3.) and is also she­chinah. There is in Christs humane nature a shechinah which shall never expire. The place in which Jacob slept, [Page 39] as he was going from Beersheba toward Haran, in Onke­lus upon Gen. 28.16. is a place in which ( [...]) the glory of the Lord rested. To a place so graciously visited by God, is contradistinguished in the same paraphrase on the verse following, [...] a private place. It's competently clear, that each supernaturall effect of divine power may be called shechinah. I see not butRuach hak­kodesh, or the Spirit of God, (the third per­son of the sa­cred Trinity excepted) and shechinah, are of equal lati­tude. Ruach Hak­kodesh, as without the sacred Trinity, and shechinah, may be esteemed reciprocall. Prophecy is called the spirit of the Lord, Ezech. 11.5. wisdome, understanding, counsell and might, knowledge, & the fear of the Lord, are called the spi­rit of the Lord, Esa. 11.2. See also Ezech. 11.19. 1. Pet. 4.14. Exod. 21.3. with Jews and Mahumedans (which learned M. Selden observes in Eutychii origines p. 21.) [...] is Spiritus sanctus super ordinatos quiescens. Ordination with the Jews (saith the authour prais'd, ibid.) according to it's externall effect, reddebat idoneos judiciis exercen­dis, adeò ut in viz. sive vi­gintitrium vi­rale, sive septu­aginta unius vi­rale. Synedriaerite cooptari possent. The internal effect was [...] the holy Ghost. If any Jewish writers affirm that this gift was conferr'd in ordination, towards the latter times of the second Temple, they must understand, if they will consist with themselves, some ver­tue distinct from prophecy, which might enable to decide causes propounded. It's generally confess'd by Jews, that God withheld from their forefathers the spirit of prophecy, within short time after the building of the second house. What may be objected concerning their dissensions in judi­cature, may easily be removed, unlesse it can be prov'd that Jews thought that such vertue was perpetually conferr'd in ordination, and could not be forfeited. The Seventy, of which the first great Sanhedrin consisted, as soon as they were ordained by God, were endued with the spirit of pro­phecy. From this event (I conjecture) Spiritus sanctus began to signifie the inward effect of ordination, in what sense soever us'd afterwards. No one can doubt but ( [...]) the spirit, is (as Onkelus paraphraseth) [...] the spirit of prophecy, Num. 11.25, 29. I deny not but Ruach [Page 40] Hakkodesh, & Shechinah, signifie distinct things in Masse­cheth Joma, and some other places quoted. It's sufficiently known that ob defectum vocabulorum, words frequently without additament, are by use determined to part of their primary significations. I may adde that [...] is used in this sense, Iohn 7.39. Acts 19.1. Ruach Hakko­desh, (the holy Ghost, or the spirit of God) is more fre­quently used for the spirit of prophecy, then for other exhi­bitions of Gods extraordinary presence. This occasion'd a mistake in Bomberge's and Buxtorf's edition of Onkelus upon Exod. 31.3. They insert [...] after [...]. The spi­rit of God conferr'd upon Bezaleel, (Exod. 31.3.) with Onkelus, according to the Spanish Bible, is a spirit from before the Lord, but with Bomberge and Buxtorf the spi­rit of prophecy from before the Lord. The spirit of pro­phecy evermore inform'd what was, is, or should be done: The spirit conferr'd upon Bezaleel onely enabled him to do somewhat. The holy Ghost suggested to Bezaleel skil in order to the structure of the Tabernacle. Those have mi­staken them to have been reciprocall. Those who are re­proched for the name of Christ, may probably be said to have the spirit of glory resting on them, in regard of their present glorious condition (by reason of the value and ex­cellency of grace) to be preferr'd before worldly prosperi­ty; to have the spirit of God resting upon them, in that they are assured byProphecy is archetypally in God, in those who are instructed by Gods pro­phets, as com­modities in the possession of those who have purchased them at the second hand. Who instructed by a Prophet, relates future contingent things, cannot without acyrologie be called a Prophet (Aquin. 2.2. quaest. 173. art. 2, 3.) yet may be said to have the spirit of God resting upon him, as affected with any prophecy applyed to his own oc­casions, by speciall aid from Gods spirit. To interpret prophecyes contained in sacred Scriptures, is to prophecy, 1. Cor. 14.1, 3, 4, 5, 6. I deny not but [...] may signifie the same that [...], and consequently be attributed to those who inter­pret Scriptures immediately doctrinall: but to prophecy seems to signifie, as I have said in 1. Cor. 14. as in the 6. verse, distinguished from doctrine. See Beza upon the place. divine revelation, and the comforta­ble influence of Gods spirit, that God will adde a gracious event to their sufferings. Their sufferings, if we subduct the spirit of glory, and the spirit of God, will be much [Page 41] sunk below nothing. That I may yet more fully explain this Scripture, the spirit of glory seems to allude to Esay 4.5, 6. and to the pillar of the cloud which marched before the Israelites by day, and that of fire, which went before them by night in the wildernesse. The comfortable influ­ences of Gods spirit in the hearts of those who are repro­ched for the name of Christ, may be fitly called the spirit of glory, in that a pledge of Gods extraordinary presence; but moreover as like the pillar of fire, illuminating and comforting them beset with gloomy afflictions, and like a cloud sheltring them from temptations which are suggested by their sufferings. That I may adde another glosse, a cloud of afflictions resting upon Gods children, is so farre from intercepting the light and sun-shine of Gods countenance, that with the cloud which overshadowed the tabernacle, and that which rested in the temple, it's a token and pledge of his more then ordinary presence. It may be enquired how ruach hakkodesh, if it signifie propheticall influence, can be said to have been wanting in the times of the second Temple, unlesse Haggie, Zachary, and Malachy be denied to have been Prophets. R. Bechai upon the paraschah in Genesis, called [...], endeavoureth to remove this scruple. The Scripture saith, [...], as if it should say,The latter times, as well as the first un­der the second Temple, are to be excepted. The Jews in whose age John the Baptist lived, counted him a Prophet, Matth. 14.5. & 21.6. Our Saviour is said (in Josephus Antiquit. Judaic. lib. 18. c. 4.) to have been ( [...]) a wise man, (he meaneth a Prophet.) Josephus (in his Jew sh warre) reporteth himself to have been a Prophet, that he foretold to Vespasian Nero's death. Abarbinel upon Esay 11. maketh the times of the second Temple altogether barren of prophecy, that he might render them uncapable of the Messias. He misre­porteth his brethren the Rabbins into the same opinion. The Prophet (he saith) reckon­eth up ten conditions, which must necessarily be found in King Messias. The first of them concerneth his lineage and family. The second condition containeth his degree of prophecy. The Spirit of Jehovah which should rest upon the Messias, is with Abarbinel the Spirit of prophesie. This prophecy concerning the Messias, could not (saith he) be fulfilled in Hezekiah, because he was not a Prophet; nor in the times of the second Temple, quòd non fuerit in eis prophetia, & non Spiritus sanctus, sicut acceperunt sapien­tes beata memoriae. [...] Habitare faciam in eo gloriam, quae est [Page 42] shechinah: sed non habitavit in eo ità jugiter ut in templo primo. Shechinah here signifies otherwise then in com­ments upon Haggie 1.8. afore-quoted, viz. the spirit of pro­phecy. Seder Olam zuta determineth in what yeare of the world prophecy expired. [...] In diebus Meshullam floruit regnum Graeciae, anno scilicet quinquagesimo secundo Medorum & Persarum: & mor­tui sunt Haggaeus, Zacharia, & Maleachi. Eo tempore cessavit prophetia ab Israel: ipse est annus mundi ter mille­simus quadringentesimus quartus. Aben-ezra saith of Ma­lachy (in Malach. c. 1.) [...] that he was the last of the Prophets. The greater part of the Jews, by whom prophecy is termed [...] forasmuch as they deny distinction of persons in the Divine essence, at­tended in the use of the term, that God ( [...]) that ho­ly blessed one (as they love to speak) was a Spirit. (The ho­ly Spirit) doth not onely signifie the third person in the sa­cred Trinity, but likewise the essence of God. Tropes from the cause to the effect, & from the thing signified to the signe are usuall. But perhaps the name Ruach hakkodesh as si­gnifying prophecy, was first borrowed from the third per­son of the glorious Trinity. We gather from the writings of some Rabbies on this side Christ, (besides that it's un­certain whether or no prophecy before Christ incarnated, was call'd the holy Ghost) a Trinity of Divine Persons. Shechinah is call'd the spirit of the Lord, Ezech. 11.5. the spirit of God, 1. Pet. 4.14. The word spirit in each of these Scriptures, is by a Metonymie translated from the ho­ly Ghost to the thing there signified.

Lest any demand, why propheticall influences, or any other symbole of Gods extraordinary presence, should be called by the name of the third, rather then of the first or second person of the sacred Trinity, I propound as pro­bable these reasons following.

[Page 43]1. The Spirit of God moving upon the face of the wa­ters, (Gen. 1.2.) supposeth for God cherishing, ripening, perfecting the rudiments of the world in the creation. What transcends the spheare of created activity, is equivalent to creation. The archetypall discovery of things contingent and future, is of that rank. Should I yield that the bodies assumed by God the Sonne, when he preluded to his incar­nation; the fire which appeared to Moses in the bush; the pillar of fire, and the pillar of the cloud, which went be­fore the Israelites in the wildernesse; the cloud and light­ning upon mount Sinai; the fire which consum'd the sacri­fices, and the cloud over the ark in the Sanctuary, &c. were not produc'd immediately out of the barren wombe of non-entity, nor yet from indispos'd matter; yet by an allusion made to an expression us'd in the history of the beginning of Gods works ad extra, the holy Ghost may signifie Gods more then ordinary manifestation of him­self.

2. As creation (which was the first of Gods works) is attributed to the first person of the sacred Trinity; re­demption which is the foundation of all good to be com­municated to us, which fallen man cannot lay claim to ti­tulo creaturae, to God the Sonne; so Gods manifestations of himself, which conferre to the applying of Christs me­rits to our selves, which bring salvation home to our souls, are attributed to the third person. Prophecyes which illuminate our minds, and sanctifying graces are by this ac­count fitly ascrib'd to the Spirit.

3. If we attend the order of persons in the sacred Tri­nity, the holy Ghost is nearest to creatures: So the ab­solving and perfecting of Gods works is congruously at­tributed to him: He is fitly said to brood the waters, to o­vershadow the Virgin Mary, to seal the elect. Apponit ultimam manum to propheticall influences. The hand of the Lord fell upon Ezechiel, Ezech. 8.1.

In the minds of all Prophets illuminated by the word of [...] [Page 44] Lord, or vision [...] insculpta est forma spiritualis, (as R. Meir in Avoda Kodesch, but in another sense). I conceive not that God spake to the Prophets by compounding or dividing acquired species, although I think not that way impossible. Jamblichus requires the same conditions to prophecy, which Plotinus (in the last book of his last Euneade, and the last chapter;) to consummate mans happinesse.De myster. c. 22. Praesagia (saith he) sunt animae rede­untis in se, in statu simili somno, in se (inquam, id est, in rationes seminales & intellectuales. He expresseth himself more clearly in these words following: Quoniam verò sunt in anima rationes generabilium penes potentiam ejus, tum effectivam, tum etiam cognitivam, atque hae rationes de­pendent à rationibus, quae sunt in diis, ideò anima his con­juncta, rationes in se suscitat in actum. There is a semi­nall vertue in the cognitive part of the soul, which cherish­ed by an union made with the divine nature, propagateth it self into prophecy. The soul withdrawing its self from worldly affairs, is thickened into stronger vertue, and su­scitated by an union made with the idea's in the divine es­sence, is productive of prophecy. Plato in his sixth book de Republ. giveth the same accompt of Philosophy to be attained, & was of the same opinion concerning Prophecy. Marsilius Ficinus in his argument to that book, expresseth Plato's judgement in these words; Ostendit Plato Phila­sophi montem in ipsa veritatis indagatione s [...]jungi à cor­poro, atque ex quadam sui cognitione divinae menti conjun­gi, ac per insitas sibi ab initio formulas idearum, ideas ip­sas attingere, ab eísque ipso contactu lumen excutere, quo mox facta foecundior concipiat, imò facta validior pariat veritatem, id est, per ipsas suas conceptiones ideis undique congruat. Compare Plato's words in the book praysed. To one who is [...] he prescribes this course; [...], [Page 45] [...]. Non ante fatigetur & ex­petere desinat quàm propriam cujusque naturam eâ animi vi attigerit quâ id apprehendere convenit. convenit autem vi quadam cognatâ: quâ cùm adhaeserit, séque ei quod ve­rè est, miscuerit, atque indè reverâ intelligentiam verita­témque genuerit, cognoscet utique verum, veréque vivet atque aletur. The soul by an earnest desiring and diligent searching after truth; (that is, by love) is united (saith he) to the idea's of the chief good, is thence enlightened and strengthened, and so conceiv's and brings forth truth, ap­prehensions congruous to the idea's in the divine essence. Jews vary somewhat from this opinion, as holding that the soul whilest the spirit of prophecy resteth upon it, is min­gled with the order of Angels, call'd Ishim. I shall not spend time in explaining their conceit (which hath in it more subtilty then truth). See Maimon. in [...] cap. 2. sect. 2. and Jews cited by Vorstius upon the place.Prophecy must necessa­rily differ also from the bea­tificall vision, quia evacua­bitur in patria, 1. Cor. 13.8. Prophecy is not to be referred to innate idea's stirred up and quickened in the mind; not to a metamorphosis of the mind, by which some Rabbines imagine it to be elevated into Angelicall perfection; but to representations produc'd in the understanding. Those forms infus'd into the minds of Prophets, whether visio or verbum, were in themTho. Aquin. in 2.2. quaest. 171. art. 3. non per modum habitûs, sed per modum passionis, seu impressi­onis transeuntis.

As Prophets could not foretell all things, so neither had they those supernaturall impressions which they received, remaining with them at all times. Propheticall light was in their understanding as in the aire, not as in the Sunne. S. Paul spake with tongues more then all the Corinthians, 1. Cor. 14.18. probably with more then the rest of the A­postles by acquired skill; but God suggested language to each of his extraordinary ministers according to necessity.

That I may yet further explain idea's impress'd upon the minds of Prophets▪ I shall shew how they differed one kind of them from the other. The word of the Lord in the mind [Page 46] of the Prophet, is of the same nature with representations produc'd by words; Vision after the manner of resemblan­ces arising from things: Sicut humana consuetudo verbis, ità divina potentia factis loquitur, (as S. Austine in his 49. epistle.) He who by his word created the world, doth by his power also form his creatures into words. Nor doth he in this way onely apply himself to the outward senses, as did Tarquinius to the messenger sent from his sonne, by lopping off the heads of the tallest poppies. Who received Propheticall vision, had elegant characters written in their minds by the finger of God. Her's eloquence above the style of humane expression. In the first chapter of Ezechiel the eighth verse, Behold, I even I am against thee, and will execute judgements in the midst of thee, in the sight of the heathen. Here's Verbum Domini. Thus saith the Lord, is prefix'd before it. In the second verse of the tenth chap. And he spake unto the man cloth'd in linen, and said, Go in between the wheels, even under the Cherub, and fill thy hand with coals of fire from between the Cherubims, and scatter them over the city. And he went in my sight. Here is vision. There the species impress'd in the mind of the Prophet were immediately verborum, but there rerum▪ There seemed something to be spoken, here somewhat to be done. There the Lord foretold the destruction of Jerusalem, here by coles of fire scattered over the city, praefigur'd it. The word of the Lord was either proper or tropicall; and sometimes was contain'd in one trope, and sometimes in an allegory: of this last sort is that Esay 6.25. The wolf and the lambe shall feed together. The same distinction hath place in vision.

In externall visions there might be tropi & allegoria re­rum, by which future things were presignified. Again, what was presented to the eye, was sometimes reall, some­times merely an apparition: of the former sort was the cloud which appeared to Elijahs servant; and according t [...] Aben-ezra, the fire in the bush which consumed it not. His [Page 47] words are these: [...] that it was in the bush, burning round about. He con­ceived the fire to purifie the place of the Shechinah, or di­vine presence here, as afterwards the Mount on which the law was given. The mountain burned with fire, Deut. 9.15. The Shechinah had fire with it in the first temple. Of the other sort of externall visions (not improbably) was the writing upon the wall read by Daniel (Dan. 5.17.) By the vision of the cloud rain was foretold; by the fire in the bush not consuming it, God reveal'd to Moses that the Israelites afflicted by the Egyptians should not be con­sumed. That was a tropicall vision, this an allegoricall. In the minds of Prophets (which I may fitly terme Theaters of future events,) we may observe the like difference of vi­sions. They were proper, tropicall, or allegoricall. To this last sort may be referred what we have in the 8. verse of the 8. chapter of the Revelation. A great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea, and the third part of the sea became bloud. As also third parts of the sunne, moon, and starres darkened, and the day and night not shi­ning for a third part, verse 12. And the starre falling down from heaven to earth, Rev. 9.1. the locusts coming out of the smoke upon the earth, &c. vers. 3. such also the visions of the horses, and them that sate on them, verses the 17, 18, 19. by the instances given the first difference of vision and the word of the Lord is sufficiently illustrated.

Secondly, These differed, in that vision oft times by simple appearances, by terms of invention, as hierogly­phicks, exhibited what should come to passe. Such was the vision of the seven thunders, Rev. 10.4. this is a visi­on of sounds. This question is propounded in Plato (lib. 6. de repub.) [...], (where­with do we see such things as are seen by us?) the answer is, [...] (with sight.) [...]; do we not also by hearing see those things which are heard, and by other senses other [Page 48] sensible objects? His answer is affirmative. Each kind of sensible objects are seen by that sense to which they are pro­portionable. Colours are seen by the eye, & sounds by the eare, &c. Both sounds and colours, all things which were apprehended by any Prophet, such excepted as had repre­sentations answerable to articulate and significant voices, were seen by the mind. This of thunder is (I say) a vi­sion of sounds. Here Deus factis loquitur; here things ex­hibited to the eye of the mind, represent other things di­stinct from themselves. But the word of the Lord requireth axiomaticall disposition, as we may gather from examples throughout the Scripture.

Thirdly, Prophetical vision had evermore the word of the Lord, joyned with it, unlesse it exhibited to the mind proper representations of things presignified. But the word of the Lord, if conceived in tropicall, or also allegoricall terms, in wch it was to be exhibited to the people; if not clear by it self, was in proper representations, which also were verbum Do­mini, elucidated in the mind of the prophet. ASee Thom. Aquin 2.2. q. 173. art. 2 (in corpore articu­li) & 4. Cùm autem monetur propheta, sed non cognoscit, non est perfecta prophetia, sed instinctus qui­dam propheti­cus. See also D. Jackson in his bhok enti­tled, The know­ledge of Christ Jesus, chap. 16. prophet pro­perly so call'd understood the analogie between visions and the events represented by them. Without this knowledge he remained unable to foretell what should come to passe, and so unworthy of the name of a prophet. He onely telleth what is present, but cannot foretell what is future, who imparteth to others propheticall resemblances which he doth not understand: neither visions allegoricall, or simply tropicall, sufficed to predictions. This is clear fromGen. 41. Pharaohs two dreams. Although he saw seven ill fa­voured and lean-fleshed kine to devoure seven well-fa­voured and fat kine; and the seven thinne ears of corn, to devoure the seven rank and full ears, yet he under­stood not that there should ensue seven good years, and after those seven bad years, and that the scarcity should consume the plenty, till he met with an interpreter. Jo­seph through divine illumination could expound Pharaohs visions, in like manner as if they had been originally his [Page 49] own. This light vouchsafed to Joseph was like such si­militudes as are wont to be produc'd by speech, and con­sequently was verbum Domini. His understanding un­lesse so illuminated could not certainly apprehend from the dreams what should come to passe (although he should have known that they were sent into Pharaohs mind by God, and that they were significative of somewhat fu­ture) no more then by its self infallibly foreknow contin­gent things. No created mind can be raised into this per­spicacity. Prescience of what is contingent is proper and peculiar to God. Propheticall vision was oft times illu­strated, as we see, by the word of the Lord. The word of the Lord was manifest in it self, or declar'd by propheti­call influence of the same kind. This is their third diffe­rence. I acknowledge (without revocation of what hath been said concerning vision and the word of the Lord di­stinguished,) that a prophet inform'd by either kind of divine influences mentioned was called (Roeh and chozeh) a seer, and that God spake to his prophets by visions. I well attend that the word of the Lord to Ananias, is call'd ( [...]) a vision, (Acts 9.10.) that Isaiah saw the word of the Lord, Isaiah 2.1. moreover that God spake in di­vers manners to the Fathers by the prophets. An answer is mingled with the objection. I adde that the understand­ing may be call'd the eye of the soul, that a prophet by Heathens was call'd vates (asThom. Aquin. 2.2. quaest. 171 art. 1. some conceive) à vi men­tis, as more perspicacious then others; that the word of the Lord, was supernaturall light. Moreover that externall words, ( [...]) when written, became the ob­jects of outward sight, and that Deus factis loquitur. A­barbinel in his preface to his comment upon Esay, con­ceiveth (although we read oft in sacred Scriptures that God spake to Moses,) that the Lord never reveal'd him­self to Moses, by that kind of prophecy which is call'd the word of the Lord. Hence it is clear, he thought the word of the Lord to be a distinct kind, or (at least) manner of [Page 50] prophecy, and that God spake to the prophets by other re­velations besides the propheticall word. For further satis­faction see Aristot. [...], as digested by Goulson, chap. 13. But in his works Graeco-Lat. printed at Paris in 4. tomes, Ann. 1639. chapter 21. [...].

Angels which appeared visibly to men might be call'd ( [...]) visions, according to Luke 1.22. The spirit which keeps our souls in life, performs the offices of the soul, doth abundantly compensate that scantnesse which is in its faculties. Man's happie in his defects. These occasionally unite him to God, who vouchsafes graciously to become their compensation. [...] moreover [...] (see Aristotle in the fifth chapter of his third book de anima, t. 18.) the same after an eminent manner agrees to God. Gods works within us are as admirable as his works without us. What he made by creation without us, that he can create again by illumination within us. By repeat­ing what he spake in the beginning of the creation, Let there be light; he can make us to understand whatsoever he hath made. What Aristotle attributes to the mind is much rather to be ascrib'd to God. Intellectus, as it is agens, cannot be said to make all things, but with limitations.Any created understand­ing, at most is but (as Aes­chylus saith of fire stoln by Prometheus) [...]. Intellectus agens ( [...]) makes all things quoad cognosci. God likewise maketh all things quoad esse, [...]. Such things as are known, have not onely to be known, but also to be even their essences from the chief good, (as Plato divinely in his 6. de repub.) Again, the understanding makes all things quoad cognosci, that is, all things which in an ordinary way are known: God can make whatsoever hath a being, to be known.Colleg. Co­nimbr. in 3. de anima, c. 5. q. 2. a. 1. The Peri­pateticks tell us, that intellectus agens hath three offices: 1. illustrat phantasmata: 2. efficit objectum intelligibile [Page 51] actu: 3. producit in intellectu species intelligibiles. Some adde a fourth, viz. that it compoundeth and divideth sim­ple representations of things intelligible. These conditi­ons if truly attributed to the understanding, may be attri­buted also to God, as concurring with it.Plato lib. 6. de repub. [...]. He makes the sight to see, and such things as are seen to be perceived. The understand­ing in all its actions dependeth upon God, but God in the production of intelligible representations needs not the concourse of the understanding, nor yet the presence of the object from whence those intellectuall forms, which are commonly said to be produc'd ab intellectu agente, proceed. Vision and the word of the Lord were immedi­ately from God; the intellectuall facultie and intelligible objects not interceding. God hath vouchsafed to perform by himself the three offices of the understanding afore men­tioned. Christ, when he had expounded the Scriptures to his disciples, open'd their understandings, Luke 24.44, 45. God by giving the spirit of prophecy, illustrated what was to be known, illuminated the minds of those to whom he communicated himself, and made what was remote actually intelligible. Moreover vision and the word of the Lord, in the minds of prophets were representative of things compounded or divided. Themistius tells us that [...], that intellectus agens is most like un­to God. Alexander in his second book de anima, chap. 20. and 21. holds that intellectus agens is God, that it is that understanding which was the creatour of all things. Plato seems to be almost of the same opinion by his sixt book de republica. Themistius upon the third de anima conceives as much. What Aristotle (as appears from his words be­fore cited) attributes to a light within us, Plato (de re­pub. lib. 6.) referres to a sunne without us; to him who is the true light, that enlighteneth every one that cometh into the world, (I mean) to the eternall Sonne of God. Knowledge (saith Plato) is [...]. Besides the eye of [Page 52] the mind and intelligible objects, he judgeth a sunne neces­sary to the procreation of sight, of truth, of knowledge. [...]. This sunne (to wit whose beams are knowledge and truth) I call the off-spring (or sonne) of the cheif good, whom the chief good hath begotten like and equall to himself: what this in an intelligible place to the mind and things understood, that the other corporeall sunne in a visible place to the sight and things seen. Almost each word is big with a deity. The sonne of the chief good! and whom the chief good hath begotten! and begotten like to himself! and who is that to the mind and things intelli­gible, which the sunne to the sight and visible objects! and that sunne in an intelligible world, as this in the visible! He could not speak more clearly that there is a Sonne of God; or that this Sonne of God is God; or that by him mankind is illustrated. Platonists had as good reason to conceive that S. John was one of their tribe from the ninth as from the first verse of the first chapter of his [...], &c. thus Amelius in Euseb. praeparat. Evangel. lib. 11. c. 19. Vige­rus thus translateth him into latine: Atque hoc planè verbum erat, inquit, per quod sempiternum cùm esset, existebant omnia quae siebant, quemadmod m Heraclitus loqueretur, quod ipsum videlicet Barbarus etiam ille, apud Deum in principii gradu ac dignitate constitutum, imò & Deum simul esse pronunciat: per quod facta simpliciter omnia s [...]nt, in quo quicquid factum est, & vivens & vita, & aliquod pro sua quodque naturae fuerit, &c. Gospel. Mankind is illuminated by Christ the eternall word and wisdome of God. This illumination by Plato hath place in Metaphysicall contemplations. Corruptible things are (saith he) confus'd, mingled with darknesse, and (as colours not illustrated by the sunne) have a perpetuall cloud upon them. The mind converting it self to these, is perplex'd and intricated in uncertainty and diversity of opinions. Truth and knowledge are be­gotten by an union of the soul with the idea's of the divine [Page 53] essence. According to Plato God (we see) is intellectus agens, to wit, performeth, when metaphysicall truths are understood, what offices are commonly ascrib'd to that fa­culty. That God performs by himself what is attributed to the said faculty, when truths are conveyed into the mind after a metaphysicall way, viz. by the spirit of prophecy; cannot be denyed. That the lowest order of Angels, by the Rabbins suppos'd to conferre the spirit of prophecy,See Mai­mon. de sun­dam. legit, c. 7. sect. 2. Vor­stius upon that tractate, c. 1. p. 19. c. 7. p. 90. Selden, de Jure Naturali & Gentium juxta disciplinam Hebraeorum, lib. 1 c 9. p. 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115. That learn­ed Authour in these pages confirmeth, that some Pagans, Jews, Mahumedans, and Chri­stians have conceived, that somewhat distinct from the soul, to wit, the supreme God, or some of his ministring spirits, or each answerably to differences of persons, and occa­sions, were intellectus agens. I have not h [...]re produc'd any testimonies about Intellectus agens, but what occasion'd by discoursing of prophecy, I cited in publick, before that noble work was printed. Authentick writings intimate, as I shall sh [...]w hereafter, that God spake to the Prophets sometimes immediately, sometimes by his embassadours the Angels. Later Jews (as sectatours of Plato) are more for mediatours, then were their predeces­sours; yet some of them as they hold that their nation is govern'd immediately by divine providence (without the intercession of the host of heaven and the Angels) so likewise that God immediately illuminated Hebrews, which became Prophets. I may not here omit that Ralbag upon Pro. 1.8. departeth from most writers of his tribe (I mean Jew­ish Doctours) as making intellectus agens the mind, or a faculty of it, and that, against all reason, passive. Upon the comma quoted, (My sonne, heare the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother) by father he understandeth God, and by mo­ther, intellectus agens. Intellectus agens, (its convenient here to preferre his sense before a Grammaticall construction) conceive [...]h Propheticall influences instill'd into it by God. For this cause (as he goeth on) our Doctours of blessed memorie have called it Metatron, which signifieth a mother in the Romane language is by them called [...] intellectus agens, evidently shews that they were of the same opinion.

The Apostles fill'd with the holy Ghost, began to speak with other tongues, as the spirit gave them utterance, Acts 2.4. [...] est sententiosa quaedam & mirifica loqui: cujusmodi erant [...], item non tam ex se quàm ex numinis afflatu & impulsu loqui, sicut de prophetis scribitur, 2. Pet. 1.21. Thus Beza upon that text. They spake with other tongues, as the spirit imprinted in their minds representations, or characters, such as was the propheticall word. It's easie likewise by what hath been spoken, to inter­pret that of our Saviour, Mat. 10.19. It shall be given you in [Page 54] that same houre what ye shall speak. Divine truths con­tain'd in sacred Scriptures, by which soever of the wayes mentioned at first reveal'd to Prophets, when to be commit­ted to writing, were by the word of the Lord as a new e­dition imprinted in the mind of the penman, if not known before to such a person, or if forgotten, perhaps somtimes as to be further confirm'd to him;Maimonie saw this truth, but perplexed, & as through a cloud. See More Nevoch. part. 2. cap. 45. de secundo gra­du prophetia. at least wise God by the secret insinuation of his spirit, unlesse he us'd the ministery of an Angel, or some other outward expression equivalent, commanded that he should write what he perceived. And what thou seest write in a book, Rev. 1.11. Write the things which thou hast seen, &c. vers. 19. We have other instan­ces in the Apocalyps, chap. 14.13. and 19.6. and 21.5. When any one by divine authority wrote, what he knew by the light of nature, or what things he had seen done, his Commission had the like signature. That divine influ­ence which was called the word of the Lord, was oft (as I may fitly call it) the [...], that or somewhat equiva­lent, was alwayes the seal of truths, whereof God peculiar­ly and by way of appropriation vouchsafed to be accoun­ted the authour.

I have reckon'd up severall wayes, and (I believe) the heads of all, according to which God revealed himself to his Prophets. Those who understood what should come to passe, by notions instill'd into their minds, had vast advan­tage if compar'd with such as were informed by ex­ternall resemblances,See Maimon. de fundam. leg. c. 7. & Vorsti­ [...] ibid. and are the onely men by Rabbins thought worthy to be entitled Prophets. Some Hebrew Doctours affirm, that Bathcol (filia vocis, of which I have spoken already) was in Israel after prophecy ceased; and that Urim and Thummim is one of theAccording to some He­brew Doctours some degrees of the holy Ghost fal short of prophecy. Urim and Thummim are dispos'd by Maimon. in the second degree of (or rather to) prophecy. See More Nevoch. part. 2. cap. 45. Abarbinel with others are divi­ded from Maimon. &c. He affirmeth in his Comments upon Esay 11. that there was no prophecy, and that there was no holy Ghost in the times of the second House. [...] Bath kol according to this Doctour could be no degree of the holy Ghost. degrees of the [Page 55] holy Ghost, between that voice and prophecy. But I can­not perswade my self to rely upon Rabbinicall Scriptures, unlesse for history concerning things appertaining to their own nation & their ancestours; neither in that perpetually.

Prophecy seems to be distinguished from dreams sent into the mind by God, and from Urim. 1. Sam. 28.6. When Saul enquired of the Lord, the Lord answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by Ʋrim, nor by Prophets.

Generall words for severall reasons are confin'd to part of their signification.

Moreover, those were Prophets eminently, who had resemblances of things future impress'd upon their minds as occasions required, throughout the remainder orNecessariò enim ause [...]tur prophetia ab omnibus reliquis prophetis (excepto Mose) ante mortem istorum; ídque vel brevi, vel diu, sicuti patet exemplo Jere­miae, de quo dicitur; ad finiendum: vel, quo finiebatur verbum Domini in ore Jeremiae: & Davidis de quo legimus; & ista sunt verba Davidis postrema. Idem enim est judicium de omnibus. More Nevoch part. 2. c. 45. Although I approv'd not Mai­monides his opinion, I conceiv'd it not necessary to contradict it. grea­test part of their lives after God once began to reveal himself in such man­ner to them. God sometimes upon speciall occasions reveal'd himself to some extraordinarily in dreams, whō he never (if we may judge by histo­ries propagated to us, and other pro­bable reasons) before or after illumi­nated by propheticall influences. See Gen. 20.3. & 31.24. Matth. 2.12. Joseph the husband of the Virgin Mary, though God spake to him sundry times in dreams, according to his pri­vate exigencies, moreover when he commanded him to flee into Egypt, communicated to him the present danger of the child Jesus; when he enjoyn'd him to return into Judea, the death of Herod who had sought the life of the child, is no where called a prophet. God signified not to Saul by dreams what he should do, or what he should omit, as to Laban, Abimelech, and to the wise men of the east, who had visited our Saviour at Bethlehem, and to Joseph. God neither made him a prophet for his private and present ne­cessity, nor yet inform'd him by his prophets in ordi­nary.

[Page 56] Quando verò dicitur, & venit Deus ad N. in somnio noctis, id prophetia minimè nuncupari potest, neque vir tal [...] propheta: sensus etenim est quòd ( [...]) adm [...] ­nitio, [...] quaedam, viro ejusmodi á Deo facta fuerit; deinde quod in somnio illa contigerit. Nam quemadmodum Deus caussatur, ut homo moveatur ad alium vel defendendum & liberandum, vel perdendum & cccidendum: sic quoque caussa est Deus ortus illarum rerum, quas in somniis nocturnis exoriri vult. Notum enim est, neque ullum dubium, quin Laban Syrus perfectissimè impius fuerit & idololatra: & Abimelech, licèt vir bonus in suo popu­lo fuerit, tamen de ipso, de terra & regno ejus dicit Abraham, Non est timor Dei in isto loco: nihilominus de utroque, Labane, inquam, & Abimelecho legimus; & venit Deus ad Abimelech in somnio noctis: & venit Deus ad Labanem Sy­rum in somnio noctis. Quocirca observa istam differentiam inter haec duo, & venit Dominus: Item, & dixit Dominus: & inter in somnio noctis, & in visionibus noctis. De Jacobo dicitur, Et dixit Deus ad Israelem in visionibus noctis: de La­bane autem & Abimelecho, & venit Deus, &c. Hac de causa exposuit Onk los ista; & venit verbum à Domino: non autem dixit de duobus istis, & revelavit se Dominus. Maimon. part. 2. cap 41. Compare Matth. 2.12. The wisemen being warned of God in a dream, that they should not return to Herod▪ departed into their own countrey another way. This Scripture in part ap­proveth what cited out of Maimonides. Eliphaz, though not to be reckoned a Prophet, was instructed from visions of the night, Job 4.13. Truths not contin­gent, but of eternall necessity, are sugge­sted to him after the way of prophecy, by which we are virtually admonished not to plead with God.Again, those more properly may be said to have been prophets, who were inform'd by divine revelation what should come to passe, then those who merely what they should do or omit. God oft vouchsaf'd the latter to some to whom he denied the for­mer; but was wont to reveal the lat­ter to whom he communicated the former. God frequently in dreams imparted to men what he would have them to do or omit; so by Urim and Thummim to the Israelites, that they should go up or not go up to battell, without presignification of any event. The rest of the Israelites were commanded to go up against the Benjamites, yet were discomfited by them. God instructed not Saul whether or no he should go up a­gainst the Philistims, by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by any who was wont to foretell future events. The words are yet capable of another interpre­tation. God answered not Saul by dreams or by Ʋrim, that is, reveal'd not to him whether or no he should go up to battel; nor yet by prophets, that is, what should be the issue, if he went up, whether or no he should be victorious.

That noted place in Homer, Il. 4. [...], &c. is explain'd by what I have now commented upon 1. Sam. 28.6. Among the Egyptians the [Page 57] high Priest is reported by Aelian in the last book of his history, to have worn about his neck a saphyre stone, which was call'd ( [...]) Truth, (in imitation of the Jews Urim and Thummim, which also Empereur upon Moses Kimchi's [...] ad scientiam, l. 2. c. 7. and Ains­worth upon Exod. 28. observed. Urim & Thummim in re­gard of the manner after which Gods will was thereby reveal'd, may be referr'd to prophecy. And the dignity of the high Priest resulting from this ornament was the more conspicuous, in that revelation was in the first place made to himself alone, and by him communicated to those who came to enquire of the Lord. When any enquired, the Priest stood with his face before the Ark; and he that en­quired stood behind him, with his face to the back of the Priest, if we may believe Maimonie, &c. Paul instructed by a differing kind of revelation, had as great advantage of his fellow-travellers. He heard an articulate voice, they onely a sound. God oft convers'd as privately, but not so familiarly, with those to whom he communicated himself by outward, as with them into whom he inspired inward representations of things to be made known. God was more intimate to these transcrib'd himself into their minds: they were pleni Deo. But howsoever idea's of things to be known infus'd into the mind, were more a mans own then those that were objects of the eare or the eye; the word of the Lord deriv'd by the sense of hearing, or (when written) by sight, more enabled to prediction of things to be accom­plished. Externall vision, howsoever tropicall, together with the word of the Lord interpreting it, suffic'd to the foretelling of what should come to passe; and internall vi­sion, unlesse exhibited in proper resemblances, plain terms, was impotent to that purpose.

The externall word was sufficient by it self to make a Prophet. Samuel by the Lords speaking audibly to him, was known to be a Prophet throughout Israel.

If God (as Josephus reporteth Antiquit. Judaic. l. 3. [Page 58] c. 9.) when he would be pleased to go forth with the Is­raelites armies, and to deliver their enemies into their hands, foretold victory toward them by supernaturall splendour of the twelve precious stones in the breast plate of judgement, verbum propheticum statum determin'd that signe to this signification. The onyx upon the right shoul­der of the Priest, shining in time of sacrifice could not be the Urim. Aben-ezra upon Exod. 28. observeth that Urim, as also Thummim, is ( [...]) res plures. Josephus perhaps thought the twelve precious stones named Exod. 28. as by extraordinary brightnesse prophecying victory, were the Urim, (lights:) and as by their native and con­stant virtues representing that holinesse and integrity which God expected in his ministers were Tummim (per­fections.) What before express'd at large, and quoted, op­pose some difficulties against this opinion. Aben-ezra telleth us expressely upon Levit. 8.8. that Urim and Tum­mim were not the stones of the breast-plate. That I may regresse whence I have diverted; Abarbinel (in his Pre­face to his comments on Esay,) dormitat, See also Maimon. in More Nevoc. part. 2. c. 36. 42, 44. & pas­sim. as conceiving [...] and [...] (somnium & visio) to be species of pro­phecy, adequately dividing it; moreover (with his au­thour there cited) as believing that the Word of the Lord is ( [...]) Prophecy conveyed in a dream. Although we find not in sacred Scriptures [...] (And the word of the Lord, was to Mo­ses) nor [...]) The word of the Lord, which was to Moses,) it is clear that both Moses and Esay were oft illuminated by that kind of propheticall influence. Who received vision or the word of the Lord, wa­king, had advantage of those, who receiv'd the same kind of propheticall influence, sleeping. Hebrew Doctours are dis­covered to have been of this judgement, assertingSee Abarbi­nel in the pre­face to his comments up­on Esay. that the spirit of prophecy never came upon Moses, who by their unanimous consent is the coriphaeus of Prophets, nor upon Isaiah eminent in prophecy, except when his spirit was de­jected [Page 59] with grief for Hezekiah, but when he was waking. Christ was inform'd according to his humane nature by thatIt appears from what precedeth that there were two kinds of pro­pheticall re­semblances, the Word of the Lord, and vision, that each (distributed ex subjectis) was internall or externall, that inward representations of each kind, in regard of the dispositions of the subject, may be distributed into those which fell into the minds of Prophets waking, and those which were infus'd in time of sleep. I conceive that agreeably enough to Hebr. 1.1. a distinct subject, or varying disposition (such as mentioned) of the same, sufficeth to make distinctum ( [...]) modum prophetiae, but that I may fully be un­derstood; adde that Christ was altogether inform'd by the most perfect kind of prophe­cy, (viz the word of the Lord,) conveyed after the most familiar and noble way (to wit, infus'd into his mind,) and when he was most conveniently dispos'd (viz. awake.) manner of revelation, which was most noble, by the word of the Lord impress'd upon his mind, whilst he was waking. No instances can be alledg'd against this assertion. Christ, as a man, was accomplish'd in prophecy, both for sub­stance and circumstances, to the extent of humane capa­city.

Fifthy, Propheticall influence was not at any time con­veyed into Christs mind by the ministery of an Angel. Deus permittit quaedam (saith Julius Scaliger:Exercit. 307. sect. 25.) alia in­sinuat per se, id est, afflatu: alia per ministros immateri­ales: alia per materiales, unde oriuntur disciplinae ex sci­entiarum communicatione: alia per principia naturalia connata nobis: quae [...] ab Aristotele appellantur. Plato imagined that the souls of some men departed made dae­mons, dispens'd prophecy to the living, asDe Isid. & Osyride. Plutarch ob­serveth. Whether or no souls in statu separato, can com­municate their conceits to those in statu conjuncto, or yet one with another; and if so, by what means, are difficul­ties which cannot be resolv'd by the light of naturall rea­son. I doubt not, but Scaligers immateriall ministers are the Angels. I cannot see but these may illuminate mens souls, as well as one another.See Vorstius upon Maimon. de fundamen­tis legis. c. 7. Talis prophetiae extruitur discri­ptio ex Hebraeorum mente: [...] Prophetia est influxus pro­manans à creatore in prophetam, interventu ultimi gradus angelorum, seu Ischin. When the spirit (of prophecy) resteth [Page 60] upon any one (saith Maimonie de Fundam. leg. c. 7. sect. 2.) [...] commiscebitur animae ejus cum gradu Angelorum, qui vocantur Ishim. In's More Nevochim, he excepteth Mo­ses. He affirmeth that all other Prophets were illumi­nated by the ministery of Angels. The same authour (de cultu stellarum ac planetarum, & statutis Gentium, cap. 6. sect. 2.) witnesseth that Ob (that old serpent) gave answers to those who enquir'd of him,Compare with this place, after Dionys. Voss. Esay 29.4. not perceivable by the eare, but ( [...]) cogitatione. [...] Angelus praefectus spiritibus (viz. of those who are about to die, and of the dead) by Talmudists is called [...] perhaps from species (which are like to things represented) impress'd upon the spirits of such as are obnoxious to this Angel, about to die, (whose souls he is suppos'd to call out of their bodies) or dead. Rabbines affirm that species were sometimes instill'd by Angels into the understanding, sometimes into the phansie according to divers degrees of prophecy. I shall adde Thom. Aquin. primâ summae Theol. q. 111. art. 1. He followeth Dyonis. affirming (cap. 4. coelest. Hierarch.) that propheticall revelations are not conferr'd upon men but by the media­tion of Angels. Intellectus humanus (as he fondly con­ceiveth) non potest ipsam intelligibilem veritatem nudam capere, quia connaturale est ei ut intelligat per conversio­nem ad phantasmata, & ideò intelligibilem veritatem proponunt Angels hominibus sub similitudinibus sensibi­lium; secundùm illud quod dicit Dionys. cap. 1. coelest. Hierar. Quod impossibile est aliter lucere nobis divinū ra­dium, nisi varietate sacrorū velaminum circumvelatum.

R. Meir in Avoda Kodesh part. 4. c. 28. is of opini­on that Angels never conveyed revelation to prophets properly so called: that according to the opinion of some ancient writers, they were created on the first and fifth dayes, and invested in aiery bodies, appeared to such as were below the degree of Prophets, constituted in the first degree of vision, which was called ( [...]) [Page 61] gradus vestimenti, or in the second which was called ( [...]) apertio oculorum.

These conceits may conveniently be omitted without refutation. An Angel spake within Zacharie, Zach. 2.3. [...] That is, after Hierome, & ecce angelus, qui loquebatur in me egrediebatur. (Yet I denie not but the words [...] may signifie what I find in the Caldee paraphrast, [...] that is (as in our English translation) talking with me. I find in Au­gust. de spiritu & anima (if that book be his work) this sentence; Angeli miris modis visiones suas facili quâdam ac potenti unione nostras esse faciunt, & quodam ineffabili modo in spiritu nostro informant, atque impri­munt, ut spiritus earum non possit oblivisci. Erasmus de­nies this tractate to be S. Austins; and Trithemius saith that Hugo à sancto victore compiled it. But S. Augustine in his 4. book de Trinitate, hath what to the purpose. Neque ad illud quidem digni habiti sunt (he speaks con­cerning heathenish philosophers) ut eis ista per sanctos angelos nunciarentur, sive forinsecus per sensus corporis, sive interioribus revelationibus in spiritu expressis, sicut patribus nostris verâ pietate praeditis, haec demonstrata sunt. As God used Angels in the dispensing of prophecies that he might honour them by so noble employment, so men are the more enobled, when they have more imme­diate converse with God.I may here seasonably add to what I be­fore quoted out of Jews, the o­pinion of Ma­humedans. They tell us that God spea­keth to man three wayes, viz per inspi­rationem, aut compellando ex occulto, aut per missionem lega­ti. He reveal'd (say they) to Abraham that he should sa­crifice his son. He spake after the second way to Moses. So he speaketh to an­gels. Sic quo (que) alloquetur Deꝰ aliquando piam animā, videli­cet vel in mor­te vel in resur­rectione, vel in ingressu in pa­radisum. God spake to Christ (say they) as to other prophets (Moses except­ed) by an angel vide plura apud Levin. Warner. incompend. hist. eorum quae Muhammedani de Christo, & praecipuis aliquot religionis Christianae capitib. tra­diderunt, p. 8, 19. My Thesis (viz. That Christ according to his humane nature was imme­diatly illuminated) is confirm'd by Jews and Mahumedans contradicting it. Moses, esteemed most excellent in prophecy, was thought (as I have said) to have enjoy­ed immediately colloquio Dei. He stood upon the highest degree of Jacobs ladder, and therefore needed not angels ascending and descending. I shall here again make use of that lemma, with which I concluded the last article of my discourse:I may here seasonably add to what I be­fore quoted out of Jews, the o­pinion of Ma­humedans. They tell us that God spea­keth to man three wayes, viz per inspi­rationem, aut compellando ex occulto, aut per missionem lega­ti. He reveal'd (say they) to Abraham that he should sa­crifice his son. He spake after the second way to Moses. So he speaketh to an­gels. Sic quo (que) alloquetur Deꝰ aliquando piam animā, videli­cet vel in mor­te vel in resur­rectione, vel in ingressu in pa­radisum. God spake to Christ (say they) as to other prophets (Moses except­ed) by an angel vide plura apud Levin. Warner. incompend. hist. eorum quae Muhammedani de Christo, & praecipuis aliquot religionis Christianae capitib. tra­diderunt, p. 8, 19. My Thesis (viz. That Christ according to his humane nature was imme­diatly illuminated) is confirm'd by Jews and Mahumedans contradicting it. Christs humane nature was inspir'd with the spirit of prophecy, (both substance and circumstances attended) in its perfection.

[Page 62]Sixthly, the soul of Christ was never, whilest it received divine revelation, in an ecstasie; Christ according to his humane nature had in this respect great advantage of other prophets. Ecstasis according to Lactanctius, est affe­ctus eorum, qui mente sunt emotâ. 1. [...] in Hippocrates and Galen is the same that [...]. This kind of ecstasie by Aristotle is called [...], by Plutarch [...], by Chrysostome [...]. 2. An ecstasie is taken for a peremptory sequestration from thoughts and deal­ings with the world, for the ravishment of the mind by contemplation of truths reveal'd to it, Acts 10.10. and 22.17. The soul rais'd from the body by extraordinary con­verse and union with God, is ecstaticall. 3. [...] is ta­ken for astonishment through admiration, (Mark 5.42. Luke 5.26.) [...]. with Suidas is interpreted by [...]. 4. [...] is amazement or astonishment arising from ad­miration mingled with fear, almost the same that [...], Mark 16.8. 5. Abscessus, discessus, [...]. Ca­lidorum fervor nullius rei accessu, sed caloris abscessu re­frigescit. 6. Egressio rei è natura propria. so 'tis the same that [...]. In this sense it's used by Theophrast. lib. 3. de caus. plant. by Plutarch, sympos. 8. Lactantius his description of ecstasis is as we see too narrow. Some Hebrew Doctours hold, that Prophets suffered an ecstasie in the last acception. See Vorstius upon Maimon. de fundam. leg. c. 7. s. 2. I esteem this opinion altogether unworthy of refutation. Montanus by words, or gestures, or both, affirm'd that Prophets were wont to be driven into ecstasies of the first and fifth kind mentioned; that they were driven into fury, and bereav'd of the use of reason. The former of these opinions is refu­ted by Miltiades quoted by Apolinarius, and out of Apoli­narius byHist. Eccles. lib. 5. cap. 17. Eusebius: both of them by Hierome in his pre­face to his Comments upon Esay, and Cunaeus de repub. Judaeor. lib. 3. cap. 7. That God pro lumine adempto (if [Page 63] we understand the light of reason) scire futura daret, im­plyeth a contradiction. If any affirm that Gods Prophets uttered predictions, which by reason of ecstasies into which they were transported, they were lesse able then o­thers to understand: I adde, that what is reckon'd the first among Gods gifts bestowed upon his Ministers, should prejudice the receivers. I cannot suspect that Gods pro­phets were not sui compotes. One main reason for which God al-sufficient by himself, useth instruments, is that he may honour his creatures by making them his Ministers. I readily believe that it is otherwise with the devils agents. How savagely he dealeth with them we may gather from Clem. Alex. in Admonit. ad Gentes, (edit. Paris. Anno 1641. p. 58.) Euseb. Hist. Eccles. lib. 5. c. 16. demonstr. Evang. lib. 5. prooem. Neither ought we to measure Gods prophets who were sanctified persons, by unrighteous men to whom upon certain occasions he communicated himself. Dicitur in V. T. Propheta qui furore [...] correptus e­ructat verba quae ipse non intelligit, ad laudem Dei perti­nentia, quamvis non fundat oracula de futuris. Talis Saul qui primo libro Samuelis cap. 19.24. prophetans abjecto pa­ludimento, humi volutabatur: quae quidem erat insania quaedam [...], ad avertendum ejus cogitationem à Da­vide, quem quaerebat ad necem. Molin. in his Vates, lib. 1. c. 4. See also John 11.50, 51. Caiaphas understood not his prophecy. Peter and Paul fell into ecstasies of the se­cond kind, Acts 10.10. and 22.17. Gods prophets (I con­ceive) were oft astonished through admiration and fear, (single, or both together) whilest God reveal'd himself to them, especially if by instruments perceiveable by the eare or eye, Moses hid his face: for he was afraid to look up­on God, Exod. 3.6. The women to whom an Angel ap­peared at Christs sepulchre, were affrighted, Mark 16.5. when the prophet Daniel saw a vision, (Dan. 10.8.) there remained no strength, no comelinesse in him. Frail man, ever since Adams fall, hath been wont to be afraid of mes­sengers [Page 64] from heaven. We hence apprehend that Gods pro­phets sometimes suffered also an ecstasie, or want of vigour in their corporeall faculties. Their senses were undoubted­ly weakened together with their bodies. Yet I cannot be­lieve what some Jews affirm, That a prophet, whether re­ceiving a vision or a dream, (they acknowledge no other way to prophecy unlesse in Moses) was, during the time of his information, [...] say Hebrew Doctours. See Abarbinel in his preface to his comments upon Esay. wholly bereav'd of the use of his senses. Besides that fear which naturally accompanies man in statu lapso, another reason may be rendred of that faint­nesse which befalls the body in propheticall revelations.Maimon. consenteth, de fundam. leg. cap. 7. s. 3. The soul neglects those offices which it's wont to perform to the body, as occupied by those glorious objects which are offered to the mind. Thence together with Gods good­nesse dilating the mind, as also from the divine revelations, the intellectuall faculty of the soul is strengthened: so far what causeth a weaknesse in the body, is from introducing a deliquium in the understanding. Christ in that accord­ing to his humane nature he was pure from guilt, could not be astonished with fear; nor yet, sith nothing befell him whereof he knew not the reason, with admiration. The inferiour part of his soul was so far conform'd to the supe­riour, and this to Gods will, that I cannot conceive that he was obnoxious to ecstasies of the second kind. Divine truths were familiar to him: it was as meat and drink to him to do the will of his Father. Forasmuch as he was not touch'd with fear, nor yet rais'd above his ordinary temper and capacity, when revelation was suggested to his humane nature, he was illuminated without detriment to the strength of his body and sensitive faculties. That I may conclude this article, each kind of ecstasie in some respect or other denoteth imperfection. Moses is by Jews more exempted from them then the rest of the Prophets. Our Saviour was humbled by his sufferings, but so as he ever remain'd most eminent in his offices.

Seventhly, we ow to Christs merits all revelations of [Page 65] divine truths since Adams fall, whether before or under the Law. This assertion needeth no explication.

Our Saviour was anointed a King, a Priest, and a Pro­phet. Melchisedec was a King and a Priest; Moses, as also David was a King and a Prophet; Elijah a Priest and a Prophet; our Saviour (asSome hold that Melchise­dec was a type of Christ ac­cording to his three offices. some conceive) was the first who was anointed King, Priest, and Prophet, was the trueTrismegistum vero ter maxi­mum nuncupa­runt, quoniam & philosophus maximus, & sacerdos maxi­mus, & rex maximus ex licit. Marcil. Ficin. in arg. ad Mercurii Trismegisti Pymand. Trismegist. He was anointed that he might be fitted to save. He was Christ before he was Jesus. Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Sonne of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed, Joh. 6.27. Christ glorified not himself to be made an high Priest, but he that saith unto him, Thou art my Sonne, to day I have begotten thee.

As he saith also in another place, Thou art a Priest for ever, after the order of Melchisedec, Heb. 5.5, 6. see also verse 1. and 4. of the same chapter. Christ was authoriz'd by God to save sinners. We have the great seal of heaven for his sufficiency: we may safely rely upon him as our Je­sus. This name imports the end of Christs coming into the world, and what benefit is to be received from him. Thy name is as oyntment poured forth, therefore do the virgins love thee, Can. 1.3. Jesus is nothing else but Christus pro­tensus or effusus: Our high priest shed his bloud, poured out his soul for us. The ointment wherewith Christ was consecrated,Psal. 133.2. runneth down to the skirts of his garment, perfumes each member of the Church whereof he is Head. Non modò lux, sed & cibus quoque est nomen Jesu: oleum quoque sine quo aridus est omnis animae cibus: sal est sine cujus conditura insipidum est quicquid proponitur: deni (que) est mel in ore, in aure melos, jubilum, & simul medicina (as sweetly Bernard). O salvificum & animarum liquefa­ctivum superdulce nomen Jesu! This Name in these Scriptures is the same that the person na­med. The num­ber of names together were about an hun­dred and twen­ty, Act. 1.15. Whosoever shall break one of these least com­mandments, & shall teach men so, shall be cal­led the least (that is, shall be the least) in the kingdome of heaven, Matth. 5.19. neither were these phrases peculiar to Hebrews. name is above eve­ry name, Phil. 2.9, 10. There is no other Name in these Scriptures is the same that the person na­med. The num­ber of names together were about an hun­dred and twen­ty, Act. 1.15. Whosoever shall break one of these least com­mandments, & shall teach men so, shall be cal­led the least (that is, shall be the least) in the kingdome of heaven, Matth. 5.19. neither were these phrases peculiar to Hebrews. name under hea­ven [Page 66] given amongst men whereby we must be saved, Acts 4.12.

That I may omit varios lusus eruditorum ingeniorum, collected by Scultet. (delit. evangel. c. 1.) the reason of the name imposed, expressed Matth. 1.21. leadeth us to the true notation: She shall bring forth a sonne, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins. The name in Greek and Latine imitateth the Syriak [...]. Many ancient writers of note affirm, that S. Matthews Gospel was first written in Hebrew.Any language used by Hebrews, may as well be called Hebrew, as Jews Assy­rians, because (captivated) for some years they liv'd some of them in Assyria. Sacred Scriptures are [...] with Themistius [...] where he quoteth the beginning of the 21 chapter of Solomons Proverbs, [...]. I judged this whole period worthy to be exscribed. It's probable they meant Syriack, the language used by Hebrews in the times of our Saviour and his Apostles. S. Matthews Go­spel, and the epistle to the Hebrews were probably first written in Syri­ack. Tremellius in his preface to the translation of the Syriack Testa­ment, conceiveth that theThe postscript to the Gospel of Mark in Erpenius his Arabick edition, telleth us, that S. Mark wrote it in Latin. Ma­ny writers, not of vulgar note, testifie as much. Concerning the archetypall lan­guages, in which the Gospels of Mark & Luke were written, see learned M. Selden in Eutychii orig. pag. 152, 160, 161, 164. rest of the Syriack Testament anciently extant, was translated out of the Greek into that language by the Apostles them­selves, or their disciples. He useth as an argument for the antiquity of that translation, that the second E­pistle of S. Peter, the second and third of John, the epistle of Jude, the Apocalyps, and the history of the accusation of the adulteresse, John 8. are wanting in it. I shall not need to object any thing against his rea­son, besides that he acknowledged those Scriptures omitted in the ancient Syriack translation authentick, and that it is improbable that the penmen of the New Testament, for­asmuch as they were the Amanuenses of the holy Ghost, compleated any their writings, after they were made pub­lick, by a second edition. The history of the adulteresse in [Page 67] S. John, is surely ex confesso, as ancient as the rest of his Gospel.

The Gospel according to S. Matthew (saith Theophy­lact) was translated into Greek by John the Evangelist; by James the brother of our Lord, saith Athanasius; Hierome confesseth he is ignorant who was the Greek interpreter of that Scripture. The Syriack word for Jesus, is originally from the Hebrew word [...] whose Hophal in writings yet extant (in sacred Scriptures) signifieth servavit, or rather salvavit. Hence Hoshea the name of the sonne of Nun, who led the children of Israel into the earthly Ca­naan, and so prefigured Jesus who leadeth true Israelites into the heavenly. His name,Jews feigne that jodh was added to the beginning of a masculine name, because it was taken from the end of a feminine (Sarai), solici­tous lest the Law should loose one iota. jodh added, began with the same letter. Sigma in the end of our Saviours name supposeth for nghajin; a dentall for a gutturall. In the Caldee word [...] terra, we have a gutturall for a dentall. There's the same way from Thebes to Athens, and from Athens to Thebes. The last letter of [...], might perhaps be lost in some Texts of the New Testament, incuria scri­ptorum. Jews both Talmudists and other, commonly call Christ [...], which unlesse we understand the gutturall (which perhaps by reason of difficult expression might be omitted by Greek writers, and Sigma sometimes added as a Greek termination) cannot signifie a Saviour. Yet even this word, if we use that kind of Cabbala which is called [...] Notaricum, according to which the first or last letters of words are put for whole words, will direct us to our Shiloh. [...] Gen. 49.10.See Archan­gelus in his Commentary in propositiones Cabalisticas Pici Miran­dulani. Morinus in Pentateuch. Samar. Exer. 2. cap 8. Jews wickedly imagine [...], as Rasche Teboth, to signifie [...], and likewise [...]. The three first letters of the three first words make [...] The sentence is express'd in those three words, as well as by [...] that the Jews should be no longer his people, or that he should be no longer worshipped by the Jews, Dan. 9.26.

[Page 68] Jesus is wel interpreted by the Greek word [...], which as Tully confesseth, Latino vocabulo uno exprimi non potest. Servat is (as Manutius notes upon that place in Tully) qui nè salus amittatur, aliqua ratione praestat: salutem dat, qui amissam restituit. Antigonus for liberty restored to the Lacedemonians, [...]. The Athenians restor'd to their laws and freedome by Antigonus and Demetrius his sonne, entitled them (as I gather from Plutarch in his Demetrius) saviours and gods. [...] (as we see) is more then servator, to wit such a one as restoreth immunities lost. Christ may be said to be servator daemorum, as pre­serving them from relapsing into nothing; but deserveth an other name, as he rescueth his elect from the merit of their sinnes. The Latine Fathers in the Primitive Church, ap­prehensive of the scantnesse of the word servator, by a new word salvator, construed Jesus and [...], I cannot so far by an opinion smile upon Magicians, as to attribute to any names vertue which may dispossesse that strong man the devil; nor yet have I so intemperate an eare, as that I should not esteem the name Jesus sufficiently melodious. Basilides, of all hereticks most delighted with gingling words, because the name Jesus seem'd to him not glorious enough, called Christ Goalah and Goalnah (from Gaal redemit). We shall abundantly rellish the word Jesus, if we apprehend how much we stand in need of a Saviour. It's so big with significancy, that no one Latine word could expresse it. Severall kings of Syria, who had the name Antiochus common to them were distinguished by glo­rious epithites. One was called [...], another [...], a third [...], a fourth [...], a fifth [...]. The glory of all their at­tributes is comprehended in the name Jesus, and truly a­greeth to Christ. Here's a Saviour of sinfull men. Had he not been truly great, illustrious, a most indulgent Fa­ther; had he not been God, he could not have been such a Saviour. Whereas there's nothing more glorious then [Page 69] temporall deliverances, which earthly monarchs can boast of. Joseph who was but one of Christs shadows, was called by Pharaoh, Tsaphnath Paaneath, according to Onkelus (upon Gen. 41.45.) [...] a man to whom secrets are revealed, after Baal Hatturim, megal­loh nistarim, one that revealeth hidden things; according to Jarchey [...] one that expoundeth hidden things; but according to Hierome the Saviour of the world. The learned Father thus translates the whole verse; Ver­títque nomen ejus, & vocavit eum linguâ Aegyptiacâ, Salvatorem mundi. Christ is the Saviour of the world in a spirituall sense, delivereth from spirituall enemies which are of all enemies most potent and most dangerous. That I may proceed to the points before propounded, He who was Christ and Jesus came into the world to save sinners. 1. Christ came into the world. 2. He came to save. 3. He came to save sinners.

First of the first. Christ came. There's a threefold co­ming of Christ; one by his spirit, another in the flesh, a third to judgement. Searching what, or what manner of time, the spirit of Christ which was in them did signifie, when it testified before-hand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow, 1. Pet. 1.11. likewise in the third chapter of the same epistle, verses 18, 19, 20. By his spirit he went and preached unto the spirits in prison in the dayes of Noah. In the dayes of Noah he went and preach­ed to the spirits of unrighteous men, which by reason of their disobedience and impenitency are now imprisoned and fettered in chains of darknesse.The Authour of Seder Olam Rabba (cap. 4.) concludeth frō this text, that the men of the age before the flood, neither enjoy eternall life, nor yet are condemn­ed to eternall punishment (with what reason I need not explain). His words are these, [...] Non fruuntur vita in seculo venture, neque condemnati sunt, quia dictum est, Non judi­cabit spiritus meus in homine in seculum. My spirit (saith God) shall not strive with man for ever, for that he also is flesh: & his dayes shall be an hundrrd and twenty years, Gen. 6.3. Onkelus thus paraphraseth upon that place: This evil ge­neration shall not continue (or be established) for ever be­fore [Page 70] me; for that they are flesh and their works evil: a term shall be given them of 120. years, if they will re­turn. The preparing of the ark could not but furnish No­ah with occasions of preaching repentance, to those who liv'd in the age of the floud. Rasi upon Gen. 6. observes as much. Much space (saith he) was allowed to Noah for the work, viz. because the men of the age of the flood, who saw him imployed in the building in the 120. years, would inquire the reason thereof, and when he answered that God was about to bring a deluge upon the world, might perhaps repent. Mr. Ainsworth conceiveth that the Chaldee paraphrast understood by the spirit mans naturall life and soul, which God would take away by the floud. But the words cited are capable of a better interpretation, import not that he understood any otherSee Zohar col. 181. then the spirit of God. By the spirit of God & of Christ in these texts divine power is signified, which enabled Noah a preacher of righteousnesse, and instructed the prophets who foretold Christs sufferings, suggested to the Apostles what they should speak, when they were questioned before gover­nours. All supernaturally illuminated partake of this spi­rit. This divine power wont to be instilled into prophets, is by the Jews called (Ruach hannebhuah) the spirit of prophecy, and also (Ruach hakk [...]desh,) the holy Ghost. It proceedeth, as do also the rest of Gods works, ad extra, from all the three sacred persons of the undivided Trinity, but in Scriptures is most frequently ascribed to God the Sonne, who purchased the communication of it to man­kind by his sufferings. Christs propheticall and regall of­fice are founded in his priestly. That any dark souls are illuminated, that any unruly affections are subdued, is to be attributed to Christs merits. We should remain both in our naturall blindnesse and perversenesse, had not Christ dyed for us. Christ may be said (prodire or advenire) to come into the minds of his ministers the prophets, as the word [...] (1. Pet. 3.19.) warranteth. That word, [Page 71] although omitted by the Syriack interpreter, cannot be suspected to be spurious, in that it's unanimously retained by Greek and Latine Fathers. Christs coming after the manner explain'd, is frequent, as appears from what hath been spoken.

His third coming is in the last judgement: For we must all appear before the judgement seat of Christ, that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done; whether it be good or bad, 2. Cor. 5.10.

His second coming was his coming in the flesh. This was twofold. First, by way of preparation or prelude. The second person of the sacred Trinity, now and then long before his hypostaticall union with our natureSee Jarchi. upon Gen. 19.18. ap­peared in the shape of a man, and so (as Calvine elegant­ly) preluded to his incarnation. Eusebius is large about this subject, Hist. eccles. l. 1. c. 2. The Lord (saith he) appeared to Abraham sitting by the oke of Mamre; A­braham (saith he) sees with his eyes (viz. his bodily eyes) a man, but worshippeth him, and prayeth unto him as God. He discovered also that he knew him, by calling him the judge of the world. S. Austine orat. 41. super Joannem, saith, Abraham saw the day of Christs eternall emanation, when as he saw three men and worshipped one.See also Chytraeus in Chronolog. sua, ad annum mun­di 2205. Christ was the man who wrastled with Jacob, (Gen. 32.24.) and the prince of the hoast of the Lord, who ap­peared to Joshua, (Joshua 5.13.) according to Eusebius in the place quoted.

We find Gen. 2.7. that the Lord formed man of the dust of the ground: and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life: and man became a living soul. Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, and Tertullian conceive, that the Sonne of God assuming for a time the shape of a mans body, took clay in his hands, and formed for Adam a body ad exem­plar corporeae illius formae quam gestabat; & insufflando in nares corporis ectypi, inspired into it a soul. Here's a preludium to what he performed after his incarnation to [Page 72] his disciples, He breathed upon his disciples when he gave them the holy Ghost. God the Sonne, when at any time before his incarnation he appeared in the shape of a man, created (as it is most probable) a body compleatly, such as is wont to be informed with a reasonable soul, made it for a time his shechinah, and as he withdrew his divine presence, dissolv'd it into nothing. These apparitions of of God the Sonne much differed from his incarnation. When he was incarnated, [...] but not [...], in these preludes to incarnation [...], at least­wise [...]. When he appeared to Abraham, to Jacob, to Joshuah, the body assumed was his [...]. the same can­not be affirmed of his body which he took from the Vir­gine Mary. Christ incarnated dwelt amongst us in a ta­bernacle or tent, John 1.14. That is,The Evan­gelist in that phrase, [...], probably al­ludes to the feast of taber­nacles, in, or near the time of which ce­lebrated, by consent of many au­thours of best note, our Sa­viour was born. for a short time, but assum'd the body conceiv'd by the Virgine, not for some short time but for ever. When Christs humane na­ture was shattered in peices, the soul and body each rent from the other, both remained united to the second person of the sacred Trinity.

Secondly, He assumed this body into the unity of his person. what we reade Coloss. 2.9. doth not discounte­nance this truth. For in him dwelleth all the fulnesse of the Godhead bodily: that is, he is very God. The Apo­stle useth an Hebrew idiome. The same word in Hebrew (viz. nghetsem.) signifieth corpus, substantia, and like­wise ipsemet ipsummet. The verb is [...], not [...]. The humane nature was shechinah, not [...] to the di­vine: in the foresaid resemblances of incarnation the bo­dy assum'd was both. You perceive already what was his other coming in the flesh. 'Twas his coming by way of re­all exhibition. 'Twas the coming of God-man. This co­ming was twofold, The first was the union of the two na­tures, The word was made flesh. God became man. He who was from all eternity adorn'd with infinite and in­comprehensible glory, condescended to our ragges, induit [Page 73] sordes nostras. Neither did he take upon him our nature by creation, but became one of Adams posterity. 'Twas re­quisite that the same who sinned should suffer. 'Twas re­quisite that he should be theVide Irenae­um adversus haereses lib. 4. c. 57. Sonne of man.In sacred Scriptures what agreeth to Christ by reason of his divine nature is predicated of man, and what to him by reason of his humane nature, is predicated of God, such communication of idiomes, is called [...] by Nicephorus Bishop of Constantinople in an epistle to Leo Bishop of Rome, annexed to the Greek Councels. [...]. Thus much Zonaras promi­seth to the Canons of the Ephesine Synode. This Councell [...]. Niceph. in the epistle to Pope Leo before prais'd. See also among the Councels an epistle of Acacius Bishop of Constantinople to Peter Bishop of Antioch. And about these mentioned, and other heresies concerning Christ, an epistle of Fau­stus Bishop of Apollonius to the same Bishop of Antioch. Peter of Antioch is here cen­sured as unworthy of the epithite Christian, because he affirmed that [...], and in way of reproch called [...]. Communication of idi­omes clear'd in sacred Scriptures, vindicates Peter Fullo Bishop of Antioch. The word [...] also, howsoever it hath been abused, may in regard of its notation, be in­terpreted (as Hebrews speak) rather [...] (ad laudem) then [...] (ad con­tumeliam.) He must needs be [...], to whom [...], as construed by Fau­stus, seems an heretick. The Bishop of Antioch his fault is variously reported in the epistles of other Bishops who wrote to him and against him. In an epistle written by Pamphilus Abyd. Episcop. [...]. ibid. In an epistle of Quintian Asculan. Episcop. [...]. He who had ubiquity for his palace, was contented to be enclosed in the virgins wombe. That God should so farre honour mans nature, is a true saying and worthy of acceptation. The other coming of God-man, Immanuel, was his birth. Jesus Christ very God (againstI mention Arians as most infamous for this heresie, but well know that Arius was not among those who profess'd themselves Christians, [...]. Theodotus (saith Eu­sebius Hist. Ecclesiaest. lib. 5. c. 28.) [...]. Na­talius persuasus erat à Theodoti discipulis, ut accepto salario haeresis hujus vocaretur E­piscopus, ità ut denarios centum quinquaginta menstruo tempore acciperet: illis itaque conjunctus per visiones commone fiebat à Domino. Quoniam verò negligentiùs visionibus attendebat, tandem ab angelis flagellatus est, ac totâ nocte haud modicè verberatus. In Eusebius his words, [...]. Compare with this sentence, 1. Cor. 5.5. 1. Tim. 1.20. And Hierome, Ambrose, Theodoret, Oecumenius, Theophylact, quoted by Bishop in his perpetuall government of Christs church, chap. 8. Arians, likewise againstJews denying Jesus Christ to be God, abundantly re­fute themselves, and one another. See Hebrew comments upon the second Psalme, Ga­latinus de Arcanis Catholicae veritatis, lib. 3. Empereur in his comment upon Abarbi­nel upon Esay, in his preface to his translation of Halicoth olam, and upon Jachiades upon Dan. c. 11. v. 38. Mr. Henry Smiths treatise entitled Gods arrow against A­theists. Sepher Jetzirah as illustrated by Rittangle (one to whom the Hebrew language and Jewish writers are so familiar, that he might seem to have been born a Rabbie.) Jews andThe Alcoran acknowledgeth Christ to be Gods embassadour, and [...] his Word; the Gospel to be the word of God, but by reasons the same which are used by Jews, insinuateth that a Trinity of persons in the divine essence is impossible. It falsely supposeth that if there be three persons, there must needs be a Trinitie of Gods. That article of Christian faith, concerning the Son of God becoming the sonne of man is misconstrued, Azoar. 2 [...] And they say that God assum'd a Son. Christians are by Mahumedans call'd [...] Associantes (that I may use the words of Erpenius in Histor. Joseph. comma. 106.) Quod Jesum Christum Deum esse dicunt, veróque Deo tanquam diversum, ut faliò illi opinantur, adjungant. Christians affirm not that God became a father by assuming in­to his nature, the person of God the Sonne; nor yet that the two natures of the Sonne of God are distinct persons, nor that God hath more sonnes then one, unlesse by a­doption, and spirituall generation (by which I mean regeneration). See in the suppo­sed Gregory Thaumaturgus [...] and σ. with their elucidations: Christ is the Sonne of God the father; those who are regenerate, although opera trini­tatis ad extra sunt indivisa, according to Scripture language, are born of the spirit. The faith embraced by Christians, acknowledgeth for its rule the Gospel, which au­thours of the Alcoran confesse to be divine truth. But moreover should Christians at any time have erred, as affirming that the divine nature was divisible, or divided, at ind [...]gni [...]i qui reprehenderent, who affirm that God when he had form'd the body of man of mud, breath'd into it part of his own soul. As Christ is God, so he is equall to God the Father. The same indivisible nature cannot agree to severall persons ac­cording to severall degrees. Eusebius doth not contradict what propounded in sacred Scriptures to be believed, as did Arius, but also the light of naturall reason. In his E­vangelicall demonstration, God the Father is [...]. And cannot (saith Eusebius) as­sume a body: God the Sonne is [...] (viz. [...]) compar'd with God the Father is (saith Eusebius blasphemously) as an ambassadour to his prince, [...] See Demonstrat. Evangel. lib. 5 c. 1, 4, 6, 9, 10, 11, 13, 20. the title of the twenty fifth chapter, cap. 30. lib. sexti prooem. c. 16, 17, 20. That I may omit similitudes by which Feild upon the Church, Dr. Andrews in his sermons, and Dr. Jackson (in his know­ledge of our Lord Jesus Christ, chap. 30.) excellently illustrate the union of the two na­tures in Christ; Gregory Thaumaturg. serm. in Annunciat. Mariae virginis, conceiveth that the Margarite consisting ( [...]) ex duabus naturis, ex fulgure nimirum & aquâ, is a fit resemblance. The Trinity of persons in one undivided nature, whereof each is infinite without infinetenesse multiplied, and du­ality of natures, whereof one is finite the other infinite, in the same individuall person, are mysteries which men and angels ought to believe, and may admire, but cannot comprehend nor perfectly represent by any resemblances. Mahumedans) very man, (against the Mar­cionites) God and man together by personall union, (a­gainst the Nestorians) came into the world, (that is) was born. This is his advent or coming meant in my text.

[Page 75] He came into the world, that is, was in lucem editus. This his coming was promised to our first parents in Para­dise, prefigured by variety of types, prophecyed of by Ja­cob, (Gen. 49.10.) foreseen by Job, (as may be gathered from Job 19.25.) prophecyed ofWith whom I may joyn Hermes in his book inscrib'd [...]. See La­ctantius, lib. de vera sapientia, cap. 6. Marsil. Ficin. Argument. in Merc. Tris­megist. Pymand. by Balaam, (Num. 24.17. promised to David, 2. Sam. 7.16. and 1. Chron. 17.11, 12.) foretold by theSee Constantines oration in Eusebius, after the life of Constantine, cap. 18. and 20. Clemens Alexandrinus Strom. l. 6. Lactantius lib. 4. c. 6. to whom may be added Justine, Athenagoras, Austine, Virgil, Eclog. 4. others. If any surmise that predictions attributed to Sybills, were feign'd by Primitive Christians preposterously ambitious of promoting a good cause, let him see Constantines o­ration before praisd; his Epistle also to Arius and his sectatours, extant in the acts of the Nicene Councell, part. 3. Sybills, celebrated by a quire of Angels, honoured by the three Persi­ans, testified by God himself. God is pleased to dwell with man on earth, the heavens cannot contain him, 2. Chron. 6.18. The voice of my be­loved! behold he cometh leaping upon the mountains, skipping upon the hils, Cant. 2.8. Vultis ipsos ejus saltus agnoscere? (saithIn Evangel. Hom. 19. Gregory up­on that place) He leaped (saith he) from heaven into the wombe, from from the wombe into the manger, from the manger to the Crosse, from the Crosse into the grave, from the sepulchre he returned into heaven. The first of these leaps is by Chrysostome called a great stride: by the second of them he reach'd into the world, according to the mind of my Text▪ He who was [...] in Nonnus. eternal was born. This is a true saying. God who is truth it self, prophecy­ed [Page 76] and promised this birth to our first parents in paradise. God out of his transcendent lenity, promised mercy, before he passed sentence upon them. Our Saviour is called the womans seed, Gen. 3.15. WereAntiquitat. Judaic. l. 1. c. 2 Josephus orthodox in what he reports concerning the serpent which seduc'd our first parents, 'twere an easie matter for the womans seed to bruise his head. He mistakes both in naturall and theolo-history; in that, as affirming that the serpent before he de­ceived our first parents, had the facultie of speech, went upon feet, and by reason of that misdemeanour was amersd these abilities, and also had poyson as a badge of his enmi­ty towards man put under his tongue, in this, as esteeming what was onely the instrument in tempting Eve, the prin­cipall cause, and the promise a precept (the observance of which would prove but of shallow advantage) that Gods meaning was, that every one, as he met with a serpent, should strike it upon the head, which contain'd in it some­what hurtfull to mankind. Onkelus attained the mind of the sentence. He thus paraphraseth; I'll put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy sonne and her sonne: he shall remember what thou didst to him in the beginning, and thou shalt observe him in the end. The sonne of the woman, our Saviour, not the Virgin Mary (as Papists blasphemously affirm) brake the serpents head, the first of the devils works against mankind: the devill by his mali­cious attempts endeavoureth to hinder the consummation of Gods works of mercy, the application of Christs me­rits. No one unlesse the Sonne of God, as well as the seed of the woman, could be able to bruise the serpents head. Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a sonne, and shall call his name EMMANƲEL, Esay 7.14.Here's habi­tatio Dei cum carne, which the Magicians conceived im­possible, Dan. 2.11. God assu­med our nature, and so became Immanuel. Behold, the Lord rideth upon a swift cloud, and shall come into Egypt, &c. Esay 19.1. This swift cloud (in Aquila's translation) [...],Euseb. De­monstr. evang. lib. 6. cap. 20. is either our Saviours body or humane na­ture. The hypostaticall union is likewise foretold by Jere­my, [Page 77] together with intimation of our Saviours birth, chap. 23. v. 5.6. Behold, the dayes come, saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous branch, and a king shall reigne and prosper, and shall execute justice and judgement in the earth. In his dayes Judah shall be saved, and Isra­el shall dwell safely; and this is the name whereby he shall be called, THE LORD OƲR RIGHTEOƲS­NESSE. [...] (viz. Dionysius in an Epistle written to Eu­phranor and Ammonius against Sabelli­us) [...]. Athanas. de sentent. Dionysii contra Arianos. Intimations and characters of his divinitie run parallel with those of his huma­nity, almost throughout histories concerning him in the Gospels. His birth spoke him man, but to be born of aNon audiendus este Kimchius, quatenus indigitari fingit ab Esaia, prophetiae suae c. 7. commate 14. [...]. Virgin (and as some conceive without pain) together with the star andIn the exposition of the sixth chapter de Fide attributed to Gregor. Thaumuturg. its said, he was born (the quire of angels attended) [...]: that afterward he sate in the midst of Doctours [...]. quire of Angels, proclaim'd him God: His swadling bands and the manger spake him man, and one dis­respected amongst men; but the shep­herds and wisemen worshipping him express'd him God. His baptisme ad­ministred by John, declared him a man; but the voice from heaven to be God. He was tempted in the wil­dernesse, but overcame; wept for La­zarus, but rais'd him from the dead; slept upon the seas, but after he was awaked stilled the waves; tempered the clay with spittle, but opened the eyes of one born blind; Lastly, by his death shewed himself man, by his resurrection God. Man ought to suffer in that he sinned; twas impossible for any merely a creature, to satisfie divine justice. Whatsoever Jews, Mahumedans, hereticks and heathens may conceive of Christ, true believers after S. Peter, with much comfort acknowledge him the Sonne of the living God.

That Jesus Christ God and man, was born, is (as I have prov'd) a true saying: it's also worthy of acceptation. The Church in whose person Solomon speaks (Cant. 2.8.) esteems [Page 78] it so. The voice of my beloved! behold! he cometh leap­ing upon the mountains, skipping upon the hils. She shouts and skips for joy. But neither is rejoycing abstracted from thankfulnesse: both are requisite. What's worthy of all acceptation, when it meets with ingenuous spirits, produ­ceth thankfulnesse as well as joyfulnesse. Those are swine which feed upon akorns, but never look up to the tree. S. Paul expresseth both in the cōmendation of his doctrine. He thankfully acknowledges how advantagious Christs coming into the world was to himself the chief of sinners. And certainly that acclamation of the Church is the voice of thankfulnesse, as well as of rejoycing. Their rejoycing is the eccho of their thankfulnesse. No man (saith our Sa­viour, Mark 9.39.) can do a miracle by my name, that can lightly speak evil of me. Who rejoyce so openly and so emphatically (as the Church in the place quoted in the Canticles) for a benefit received, cannot easily become sons of Belial, withdraw their necks from religion, forget the obligation cast upon them. I may safely adde, that the re­joycing express'd by the Church, if it be rightly analysed, will be found to have in it more de amore amicitiae, then concupiscentiae. The godly rejoyce more in the advance­ment of Gods free mercy, then in their own salvation. They rather chuse to enjoy, then to make use of Christ. I shall shew before I proceed to the remainder of my Text, that Christs comming into the world, abstracted from the end of his coming (express'd in my Text), holds out to us ample matter both of rejoycing and thankfulnesse. The ap­proach of any good towards us is matter of joy; and if it be freely bestowed upon us, likewise of thankfulnesse; and so much more of thankfulnesse, by how much the more freely it comes from the Donour. Grace restored to man (as Thom. Aquin. 2. 2. q. 106. art. 2.) more obligeth to thankfulnesse, then grace conferr'd at our creation, quate­nus (that I may use his words) magis datur gratis.

I shall first shew, That Christs coming intimated some [Page 79] good towards us: secondly, That he came freely. The former of these propositions is clear'd from the terminus à quo, and the terminus ad quem of his motion, together with the freenesse of the motion it self. I must for the pre­sent take for a postulatum what I shall hereafter prove, viz. That Christ was not compelled into the world. What be­sides is repugnant to the freenesse of his coming (as morall necessity, by some fondly conceived to be cast upon him by mans merits) cannot import that his coming should not be advantagious to us. Christ freely disrob'd himself of glo­ry, assum'd the rags of our nature, and so disguised visited sinfull mankind. That one completely well, much more a great man, a Prince, should bestow a visit upon one sick: That any one should own a friend in great distresse, especi­ally one guilty of treason, is wont to be esteem'd a great favour. A traytour, if his Sovereigne cast a favourable eye upon him, interprets it a pledge of his propitious affecti­ons; erects his languishing spirits. Here the Monarch of heaven and earth visiteth mankind in sicknesse and distresse, such as were disaffected towards him, such as were traytours against him. What is the ordinary temper of the world, Cyprian well expresseth in his second Epistle. I have not met with any Authour more elegant and copious to this purpose, yet conceive that his expressions settle much below his subject. I shall onely give you a tast of him, you have accesse to the rest at your leasure. Pau­lisper te crede subduci in montis ardui verticem cel­siorem, speculare inde rerum infra te jacentium faci­es; & oculis in diversa porrectis, ipse à terrenis con­tactibus liber, fluctuantis mundi turbines intuere. Jam seculi & ipse misereberis, tuíque admonitus & plus in Deum gratus, majori laetitia quod evaseris, gra­tulaberis. In the same epistle fiunt quae nec illis ipsis pos­sunt placere, qui faciunt. The men of the world were more then vulgarly wicked, when our Saviour came a­mong them. The wickednesse of man was great in the [Page 80] earth, and all the imaginations of the thoughts of his heart, were onely evil continually. True religion was no where to be found but in Judea, and there onely as a few imbers in an heap of ashes. How wicked that generation was, besides testimonies in sacred Scriptures, and hu­mane writings, we may in part conjecture from punish­ments visited upon themselves, and already upon their posterity. But neither is Gods indignation yet satisfied. Christ, as if lest at his approach sinnefull man should be confounded by reason of his own guilt, layes aside his im­periall robes, [...], &c. appears as a suppliant, rather then one who had potestatem vitae & necis. [...]. Macar. Ho­mil. 4. This his coming was his exinanition. He who was in the form of God, thought it no robbery to become equall with God, made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likenesse of men. Philip. 2.6, 7. This is a good omen. We cannot but suspect his coming besides some good towards us. Christs coming into the world to­gether with the circumstances of it, insinuate what is clear­ly express'd, Matth. 20.28. That the Sonne of man came not to be ministred unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransome for many; His coming, forasmuch as it was not forced, neither desireable in order to his own ends, must needs be undertaken for the benefit of some others, and of men rather then of angels. He in no sort took the Angels, but he took the seed of Abraham, Heb. 2.16. We have shewed that our Saviours birth containeth in it matter of rejoycing.

A second scruteny will discover in it matter of thank­fullnesse. Thankfullnesse (according to Thomas Aquinas 2. 2. q. 106. art. 2.) is two wayes engag'd. First, (ex quantitate dati) by the greatnesse of a gift. Secondly, (ex animo dan­tis) by the freenesse of the donour. The gift it self is naked, unlesse (as Civilians speak) consensu vestiatur. The benefits about to result from Christs birth, by the circumstances of his coming, are intimated to be great of the first magnitude. [Page 81] And what good soever acerueth to us by his birth, was conceiv'd in the wombe of free mercy. When as sacrifice and offering, burnt offerings and sinne offerings could not appease divine justice, then I said, lo I come, that I should do thy will, O God, Heb. 10.5, 6, 7. He humbled him­self and became obedient to the death, even the death of the crosse, Phil. 2.8.

Our Saviour was not merited into the world. 2. not compelled. First, of the first: mankind could not by vir­tue of merits exact Christs incarnation and birth. The then present generation did not merit his coming. [...] Et in­quiunt (Rab­bini nostri,) ait Rabbi Jo­chanan, Non venit filius David, nisi vel in genera­tione qua tota est justa, vel in generatione quae tota est impia. [The later part of the disjuncti­on falleth not much short of truth.] See R. D. Kimchi upon Esay, 59.15. So farre those to whom he came were from meriting his co­ming, that, some few excepted, they desired him not before he came; welcom'd him not into the world, when as he came of his own accord; accepted him not when as he had declared his gracious intentions. I shall afterward ex eadem fidelia prove, that neither such as believed at the time of our Saviours coming, nor yet the Patriarchs could merit his incarnation and birth. First, of the first; 'Tis an axiome in the Civill Law. Quod omnes tangit, ab omni­bus debet approbari. But Christs coming, although it most nearly concern'd all the Jews, was so farre from being suf­frag'd by their merits, that it was not voted by their de­sires. He came unsent for. The Jews some few excepted, and Gentiles generally were affected in like manner with our first parents in Paradise after their fall; readier to runne away from God, and to hide themselves from him, then to seek after him. God sought out Adam and Eve, when they endeavoured to shun him, and tendered to them a gracious promise, before they cryed mercy. Athanasius in his oration against the Gentiles, illustrates Gods [...] (as discovered by arts of grace now mentioned,) by the similitude of a prince, not permitting his subjects in rebellion, but endeavouring by all acts to reduce them to their duties. The holy Ghost in S. Luke (chap. 15.) useth the similitudes of a woman seeking a lost great, and [Page 82] of a shepherd seeking a sheep that is runne astray. A shepherd with a sheep upon his shoulder, engravened up­on the communion cup in Primitive times of the Gospel, imported the same notion. Christ took upon him our na­ture: overtook it, by running after it, as the word [...]; also signifies. Those Jews who lived when our Savi­our was born, were a generation of vipers, did eat through the bowels of their mother, the more ancient Church. Two tenents they almost generally embraced which could not consist with a desire or yet expectation of such a Savi­our. 1. They cryed up justification by the works of the Law. They were so farre from seeking after a Physitian, that they could not acknowledge themselves diseas'd. 2. They expected that their Messias should be an earthly Monarch; that his kingdome should be of this world, that he should by civill power subdue the heathen. These opi­nions crucifie the crosse of Christ, are most repugnant to that way which God in his infinite wisdome had contriv'd for the saving of mankind.

Secondly, as they sent not for our Saviour before he came, so neither did they courteously entertain him coming of his own accord. He was rejected into a stable [...]. at his first entrance. An ample signification of his condescension, as also of the condition of those he came to save! They had sunk themselves below beasts. Besides that it is better to be a beast then to be like one, brute creatures were al­wayes subject unto him; men disobeyed him. The whole creation at all times, the faln angels and men excepted, have been observant of God. R. Jonathan in Maimo­nides (m [...]re Nevoc. part. 2. c. 29.) concluding that the course of nature was setled immediately after the creation, maketh one exception, viz. that God entred into certain conditions with the red sea, that by dividing it self it should open a passage to the Israelites coming out of Egypt. Rab­bie Jeremy the sonne of Eliezer saith, that God did not onely make a covenant with the sea, but in like manner [Page 83] with all things which he had created within the six dayes. This sentence is to be preferred. All creatures void of rea­son have observed this covenant. All creatures wanting reason have in themselves so much self-deniall, that they are ready even against their particular natures, and to their private detriment, to obey Gods command. The wa­ters of the red sea stood upon an heap, that the Israelites might be accommodated with a way to escape from the Egyptians. The waters of the river Jordan, that they might open to them a passage into the promised land. The sunne stood still that they might conquer the A­malekites; went backward that he might signifie time added to Hezekiah's life. The fire spared the three children. Such creatures as have sense, and the faculty of feeling pains if their appetites be not satisfied, have at Gods command used heroicall abstinency. The Lyons, whose denne was made a prison to Daniel, made good what God promiseth, Psal. 34.10. The Lions do lack and suffer hunger; but they that seek the Lord, lack nothing which is good. The Ravens fed Elijah by the brok Cherith, 1. Kings 17.4. When as Jonah commanded to Nineveh, endeavoureth to flie to Tarshish, that is, the contrary way, a Whale brings him back again, lands him on the right shore. Men have frequently neglected their God. When our Saviour came to seek his own, his own received him not. The Sonne of man hath not whereon to lay his head, Matth. 8.20. That the Messias when he cometh shall not have whereon to sit, where to rest his body, is affirm'd by the Gemarists. Our Saviour may seem to have alluded to such a tradition in the expression quoted.

Yet there remain other circumstances, which more ag­gravate Christs love to mankind; and in that they were foreseen, likewise the freenesse of his coming. As he came of his own accord, was not sent for, disrob'd himself of majesty, look'd upon such as were his enemies, yea rebells [Page 84] against him with a friendly aspect, was not welcom'd not courteously entertained at his coming; so neither was he accepted after such time as he had declared his gracious in­tentions. He came among such as were contumaciously re­bellious, so fastened to their lusts, glued to this present evil world, that they would not accept of a Saviour upon most gracious terms offered. When light came into the world, they preferred darknesse. The world cannot hate you, but me it hateth, because I testifie of it, that the works thereof are evil, John 7.7. If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you, Joh. 15.18. The Gergesens loved their swine better then a Saviour. The Jews prefer­red Barabbas before Christ; an enemy to publick safety, before one that came to save mankind. As he was vilified throughout his life, so at last by a violent death thrust out of the world.It hath been confessd by ancient Jews, likewise by Talmudists, that the Messi­as was to be expected about the end of 4000 years from the Creation. [...] Traditio domus Eliae: sex mille annos durat mundus. Bis milla annis inanitas & vastitas. Bis item mille annis Lex. Denique bis mille annis dies Messiae. Gemar. Sanhedr. cap. 11. But for our sinnes (say Talmudists ibid.) which are many, his coming is deferred. [...] sed ob peccata nostra quae multiplicata sunt, abierunt ex eis (viz. annis) qui abierunt. [...]. Jachiades upon those words, Dan. 12.4. (But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book even to the time of the end) would have us believe, that God seal'd up the time of the coming of the Messias, revea­led it to Daniel, as if with Aristotles Acroamaticks, it should be [...]. He concludeth with truth his animadversions upon that comma: [...] verùm enim vero Deus non dignabitur clarissima visione, cùm Deus reduce. Zo [...]nem: tunc intelligemus res ipsu [...] [...] sunt. They shall acknowledge him whom they have pierced for the Messias. Seasonably adde Maimon, in [...] chap. the last, [...] nè supputet terminos (viz. temporum) [...] dixerunt sapientes, expirent animam, qui supputant terminos. R. Jehoshuah the sonne of Levi, in the Gemara of Sanhedrin, and chapter afore-prais'd, conceives that God had resolved that mens delinquencies should not retard his gracious intentions, but yet that the coming of the Messias might be accelerated by their deserts. He thus glosseth upon that of the Prophet Esay, (chap 60.22.) I the Lord will hasten it in its time. [...] Si mereantur, accelerabo: si non mereantur, tempore suo. Papists entertain this conceit as orthodox. They hold that those who liv'd before, and those who in the time of our Saviour, by obedience foreseen, and the ca­ptivity of the Patriarchs in Hades, ex congruo merited the incarnation of God the Sonne. Neither such as believed in the age in which our Saviour was born, nor those in times preceding could by their merits procure or hasten his coming. There's (oppositum in apposito) an implicite contradiction, if we say that sick persons by their perfect health merit a visit from a Physician. But neither can the perfect observance of the Law, merit any thing from God.

[Page 85]As no creature could impose upon God the Sonne, a Morall, so neither a Physicall necessity of coming into the world. Astrologers most blasphemously attribute Christs birth to the starres. Albumazar affirms, Quoties Saturnus denas sui orbis conversiones perfecerit, hoc est, Expletis annis trecentis, semper quasdam magnas res & admodum insignes evenire. Post Alexandrum enim (saith he) an­nis trecentis, apparuit Arelasor filius Bel, qui Persas con­trivit; & proximé post transactis aliis trecentis annis, ap­paruit Jesus, Magister & Dux Christianorum. Here's [...] sufficiently betrai'd. He could not (as appears) divine at what time Arelasor foyl'd the Persians, or when our Saviour was born. He addes 280. years to his true di­stance from Alexander. Magna Saturni & Jovis conjun­ctio (say some Astrologers) nascentem orbem initiavit: alia praeparavit diluvium: alia Abraham vel Mose [...] genuit: alia Jesu adventum praenuntiavit: alia Mahumeti ante­cessit. Cardan upon Ptolemey's Tetrabible, imputeth Christs birth, faith with other graces wrought in mens hearts, Christian religion begun, continued, sometimes ad­vanced and propagated, other times depressed and contra­cted, to the starres. Dum fiunt magnae conjunctiones in primo Trigono, quae durant annis 199. & singulis 20. fiunt annis, nascuntur in orbe inferiori imperia, monarchiae, tranquillitas, pax, ex Solis & Jovis dominio. Item sapi­entes insignes, sterilitates magnae ob triangulum igneum. Sic incipit Romanorum monarchia sub Julio Caesare in Δ primo, & Jesu Dei lex, & Apostolorum prophetia, & prae­dicatio, & vitiorum purgatio, idololatriae destructio, & [Page 86] justitiae pietatísque exaltatio, & monarchia sacerdotalis in terra: & per 200. annos donec in primo Δ factae sunt praevaluit monarchia, & lex sancta, pro qua innumeri mor­tui sunt significante Marte domino Arietis. Thus Haly and Cardan as digested byAstrolog. lib. 2. c. 3. art. 1. Campenella. Petrus de Aliaco is in points mentioned as blasphemous as these cited, in his con­cordia Histor. & Astrologiae. That axiome of Pindar, [...], in that I must be brief in the redargution of these authours, will stand me in good stead.Pererius de divinat. Astro­log. cap. 3. num. 18. Albumazar foretold that the Christian law should not endure above a thousand foure hundred sixty years. Time hath demonstrated him a false prophet. Some have dreamed that Asia and Affrick shall be converted to Chri­stian religion by the fiery Trigon, consisting of Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius. Christian religion (say they) began under this Trigon, wch also continued 200. years after Christ born therefore from the yeare 1600. to the yeare 1800. shall be much propagated under the same triplicity.Vide Nunc. prophet. p. 8. Not attending that in the 16. century, under the watery triplicity, consisting of Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces, Christian religion was more disse­minated, if we attend spaces of earth, by Lusitanians, Spa­niards, English, and Hollanders, then in the 1500. prece­ding.See Alsted. Encycl. fol. 1084. col. 1. Mahumetisme which (as Astrologers say) as it began under the watery, shall be abolish'd under the fiery trigon, gathered strength & vigour in the ninth & tenth centuries, that is, under the fiery triplicity. Besides that I may here sea­sonably adde that rule, much in use with Jews, A testament that faileth in any one point, is authentick in none; expe­rience hath demonstrated Astrologers vain and ridiculous, in the grounds upon which they build those bold assertions produc'd concerning Christianity.Astrol. lib. 2. cap. 3. art. 4. Campanella's much more temperate then his predecessours. He takes for an axiome, Leges & imperia quae incipiunt in tarditate ano­maliarum, durant temporibus longissimis. He giveth for examples the Babylonian and Romane Empires. He addes, Christus natus est, eligens sibi tempus primi trigoni, om­nium [Page 87] optimi & constantiam anomaliarum. Although this Authour here tantùm ait, non probat, somewhat came into my mind which may render his conjecture plausible. In the first (1/3) ten degrees of the Persian sphere, is plac'dSee learned M. Selden, De Diis Syris, Syn­tag. 1. cap. 2. (viz. inscribd) de Teraphim. Joseph. Scal. in sphaeram Barbaricam, M. Manisii. Vir­go pulchra capillitio prolixo, duas spicaes manu gestans, re­sidens in siliquastro, educans puerulum, lactans & cibans eum. We have here according to Albumazar and Frier Bacon after him, a symbole of the nativity of our Saviour. The words cited by the one out of the other, are these. In­tentio est quod beatae virgo habet figuram & imaginem in­fra decem primos gradus virginis, & quod nata fuit quan­do sol est in virgine, & ità habetur signatum in calendario, & quod nutrit filium suum Christum Jesum in terra He­braeorum. With whom agreeth the book entituled, Ovidius de vetula ad Virginem Mariam,

O Virgo felix, ô virgo significata,
Per stellas ubi spica nitet.

The sunne also (say Astrologers) was in Leo at the birth of Christ, the lyon of the tribe of Judah. Should we grant these reports of the nativities of the Virgin Mary and Christ to be true, yet besides that Christian religion (as we have demonstrated) hath been contracted under a fiery, and propagated under a watery triplicity, its clear by undenia­ble authority, that God doth not alwayes use the starres as mediating causes, nor yet as signes of what he hath decreed in the sublunary world. He created vegetables before the sun and moon (as some conceive) least any should impute their productions to the influences of those planets. Ʋt sponte sol radiat, dies illuminat, fons rigat, nubes irrorat, ità se Spiritus coelestis infundit (as Cyprian sweetly in the epistle quoted) the same may be applyed to Christs coming into the world. That Christ came into the world, is as I have shewed, true and acceptable doctrine.

In the next place, He came to save. Ezech. 47. The waters of the Sanctuary now are up to the knees. We may partly conje­cture what were his intentions, by the circumstances of his [Page 88] coming, but in the second proposition have them in some measure expressed. Christ Jesus came into the world that he might become a Saviour. Although my Text seem rather to point at the birth of Christ, then the union of his two natures. God the Sonne was incarnated that he might save sinners. How thankfull heathens have been for temporall deliverances, I have explain'd upon occasions before offer­ed; and so anticipated what is suitable to the point in hand. I adde, that messengers sent by the Athenians to thank An­tigonus and Demetrius for their liberty, were by them cal­led ( [...]) by the name wont to be given to those who were sent to enquire of the Oracles. Had Christ come to rescue such as were entire and upright, but enslaved to men; or to satisfie for such as had offended men; or to deliver such as had offended God from temporall punishments; or onely to establish the Angels his friends, yet should he have done what all would have looked upon, as much to be e­steemed by those whom it might concern. God the Sonne long before he assumed our nature, went before the Israe­lites in the wildernesse, and brought them into Canaan, Exod. 23.20. Some Jewish Doctours, as Abenezra wit­nesseth upon this text, say that by Angel here is meant the book of the Law; others understand the Ark of the Cove­nant: Himself concludeth that the Angel here promised, as a conductour to the Israelites, is the Angel Michael. [...] by a ( [...]) permutation (as Cabbalists speak) becomes [...] Michael. There's onely a Metathesis with jod inserted. Abenezra spake a truth which he compre­hended not. The Angel which went before the Israelites is the same with Michael, Revel. 12.7. no other then the Son of God.See Jarchey & Bar. Nach­man upon the place. Other Hebrew Authours inferre from that kind of Cabbala, which is calledThere are three kinds of Cabbala calld [...] permutatio, [...] notaricum, and [...] gematria. Gematria (as Elias Levita, and David de Pomis acknowledge) is a Greek word, Geometria; significat autem in arte Cabbalistica, non terrae aut figurarum dimensionem, sed Arithmeticam lite­rarum supputationem, qua dictiones diversae sibi invicem aquivalere probantur. Gematria, that the Angel here [Page 89] mentioned is ( [...]) metatron. [...] metatron (saith Rasi) in Gematrie, is the same that shaddi: the same number is exhibited in the letters of each word, viz. 314. We must in that comma of Exodus before quo­ted, understand an uncreated Angel. Gods name is in him, v. 21. that is, he is God. Nachmanides saith upon the place, [...]: Ipse est Angelus ille redemptor, cui nomen magnum in medio ejus, (scilicet) quoniam in illo dominus petra seculorum, & is est qui dixit, Ego De­us Bethel, (utpote) quod mei sit regis habitare in domo sua. R. Menachem upon the place, saith. His voice is the voice of the living God. Gods children ow to Christ, the head of the Church, their temporall deliverances, but are further obliged to him: He came into the world to save sinners.

So I am faln upon my third proposition. Major est Dei misericordia quam nostra miseria. The waters of the Sanctuary are now so risen that we may swimme in them. Here's the great mystery of godlinesse, 1. Tim. 3.16. The wits of men and Angels could not have plotted such a way for mans recovery. The devil suspected not that his endeavours against men should by such means be frustra­ted.I cannot with Clem. Alex. (Paedae­gog. lib. 3. c. 1.) so construe that of Hera­clitus, [...].) as to make it signifie the hy­postatical uni­on of Christs two natures. Men may believe but cannot comprehend Christs two natures so united, as that he who is eternall may be said to be born in time, he who is impassible and immor­tall to suffer death, &c. There remain two other depths in Christs coming to save sinners, which render his goodnesse as admirable as his wisdome. 1. 'Twould be an injury with men (as Salvian well observed) to punish a good sonne for a bad servant. Here's scarce any difficulty; but I may opportunely suggest, that as Christs willingnesse to suffer for us, asserts the justice of God the Father; so it is a remarkable part of his free mercy towards us. Christ of [Page 90] his own accord laid down his life for us. 2. Take into your meditations, who were the objects of Christs mercy. They were his enemies. It's too frequently a peice of in­justice amongst men, to rescue by strong hand and abuse of authority, those from punishment who deserve to suffer. Volenti non fit injuria. God without derogation from his justice freely remits what men had sinned against himself. He declared together with his justice his holinesse likewise, in bringing sinne to condigne punishment; and moreover emphatically his rich goodnesse, by suffering for sinners and such as were rebels against himself. A young student of History (saith Polibius) universam mundi historiam de­bet uno intuitu complecti, & velut in corpus redigere. This work is done to our hands in the history of Gods mercies and free love towards us. Christ by suffering death for us, did omnem bonitatem [...]. All other spirituall blessings meet in this as the radii in the center, and as streams in the fountain: God's pleas'd to accumulate one mercy upon another. God the Father out of his [...] was pleas'd to send his Sonne into the world to die for sinners; and to make this mercy the foundation of others necessary in order to their salva­tion: To save sinners was the end, the main designe of Christs coming into the world. Calvine chastiseth Serve­tus affirming that Christ should have come into the world, although man had not sinned. To save sinners was the work for which he came down from heaven. Lord speak the word onely, (said the Centurion Matth. 8.8.) and my servant shall be healed. Jesus at a distance by his word cured the bodily infirmity of the Centurions servant. God by his word created the world. God said, Let there be light; and there was light, &c. Many conceive that God in regard of his holinesse could not remit mans sinnes with­out satisfaction. All agree, that the way of which he was pleased to make choice for our recovery; was in many respects most convenient. That our spirituall infirmities [Page 91] might be cured, that man might be re-created, 'twas requi­site that God should come down from heaven, and that he should not merely speak the word, (be ye saved) but that he should do and suffer many things for us. Our re­demption put God to greater expence then did our crea­tion. A signe that we had sunk our selves below nothing! Ʋbi virtus (saith Plinie) ibi etiam fortuna. Here are good tidings for those, who were altogether void of virtue: here's salvation for sinners.

That Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, is a doctrine worthy of all acceptation. 1. This doctrine is acceptable in regard of its authour. Should an earthly Prince speak, we should hear him with greedy attention. 2. Acceptable in regard of those by whom it was deliver­ed. It was preached by Angels to Joseph the husband of Mary, and the shepherds; by the Apostles, by Christ him­self. 3. Acceptable in that contain'd in plain terms. Many parts of Philosophy are obscure, and the answers of ora­cles were oft ambiguous: vitreum vas lambimus, sed pul­tem non attingimus. This doctrine is so clear, that he that runneth may read and understand. Those who are of weak capacities, are not debar'd from it. They may tast how good and gracious the Lord is. But some truths not fun­damentall have their share in these conditions. 4. This doctrine in regard of its matter, is worthy of all accepta­tion. This is the very life and soul of the Gospel, the fun­damentall of fundamentalls. That substantiall truth which almost all the types in the Law prefigured; that cardinall truth upon which dependeth the rest of the Gospel. This doctrine containeth good tydings of great joy which shall be to all people. Luke 2.10. [...] in my text, is I conceive, the same that [...]. Here are tydings worthy to be received with full, with compleat acceptation. One soul is more precious then the fabrick of the world; certainly each mans soul ought to be more dear to him, as the principall part of himself. What will it profit a man, if he shall gain the [Page 92] whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? Mark 8.36, 37.

Secondly, as the soul is more precious then all world­ly honours, treasures and delight, so salvation is much bet­ter then the soul. That which is the happinesse, the end of man, must needs be better then man. Grace is better then nature. An habite is extremum potentiae. But our happi­nesse is better then grace. It's better not to be, then to be eternally miserable; and the fruition of God is much above our beings, and means conducing to it. There's a wide hiatus, a vast gulf between the largest of world­ly blessings and the narrowest of spirituall conferred upon Gods children. Those have an interest in one who knoweth all their wants, who is ready and able to help upon all occasions. The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous; and his ears are open unto their cry, Psalme 34.15. Should not God see, as well as heare, his children should want many things. We appre­hend not all our own wants, and so cannot pray to God for the releif of all. God knoweth what we stand in need of, before we pray unto him, and of his own accord, (without any monitour) is wont to aid us. Gods favour likewise is constant. Acceptablenesse with him is, (what Thucidides said of a well compos'd history) [...]. Our friends upon earth are oft times ignorant of our necessities; oft times impotent, not able to relieve us; sometimes slack, and not forward to help; and very un­constant. Temporal good things are scant cannot fill up the capacities of the soul. Neither is the understanding satisfied with humane knowledge, nor yet the will with worldly enjoyments. Nothing besides God can quiet the mind.

Thirdly, The recovery of what hath been lost, oc­casioneth more joy then doth immunity from dammage. So much is expressed in three severall parables, (Luke 15.) one of the lost sheep, a second of the lost great, a third of the prodigall sonne. There's joy in heaven over one sin­ner [Page 93] that repenteth, more then over ninety nine just per­sons who need not repentance, Luke 15.7. God's more glorified in the conversion of sinners, then he could have been by man persisting in integre [...]ity. Converts have much more reason of rejoycing, then they should have had, had they never fallen. We reflect with joy upon evils, which we have escaped. Hac olim m [...]minisse juvabit. And our joy beareth proportion to our dangers. That our affecti­ons might be inlarg'd in spirituall joy and thankfullnesse, God hath appointed out of his rich wisdome the Law a School-master to scourge us to Christ. Dives was right for the substance of his request, containing his affection to­wards his brethren yet living. A tast of hell much com­mendeth to us the delights of heaven. S. Paul, as I shew­ed heretofore, is a very pregnant example to this purpose. But moreover the glad tidings preach'd by S. Paul are worthy to be accepted by all men, as well as to be re­ceived with all acceptation. The most righteous among men, Christ himself excepted, stand in need of a Saviour. It's just, (that I may borrow a sentence from Euripides) that [...], who do what is not good suffer what is not delightfull. [...]. (saith Herodotus in his Terpsicore) Nullus homo poenam sceleris reus effugit unquam. For­asmuch as we all have sinned, 'tis necessary that we all suffer in our own persons, or some other for us. God the Sonne took upon him sceleris nostri expiandi partes, was pleased to become our Saviour.

That Christ came into the world, is a doctrine as true as acceptable. Its an honourable truth, an axi­ome in faith. The words [...] expresse as much; if we admit they are an exegesis of [...], the epithite of [...]. For proof of the Thesis, I ap­peal, 1. To direct and immediate expressions in sacred Scripture. 2. To Christs sufferings. 3. To means added for the conversion of sinners. 4. To the consciences of [Page 94] sanctified men, those who are most sincere in their lives, and most competent judges. 5. To the prevalency of this doctrine over the power of darknesse, over errours and heresies in mens judgements, perversenesse in their wills and affections, and corruption in their lives.

First of the first. Thou shalt call his name Jesus, for he shall save his people from their sinnes, Matth. 1.21. To save from sinne, is to save from sinne together with its evil consequents. The Sonne of man is come to save that which was lost, Matth. 8.11. He came to save those who had gone astray, those that were sonnes of perdition, and to save them so as they should become lost in their own apprehen­sions. For God sent not his Sonne into the world to con­demne the world: but that the world through him might be saved, Joh. 3.17. Here's deliverance from the sad effects of sinne, viz. riddance from pain, and a restoring to hap­pinesse. I may adde, that those who receive Christ, obtain a better condition then that which we lost in our first pa­rents; Felix lapsus qui talem [...]ruit Servatorem. Holy Job foresaw this Saviour, I know (saith he) that my Re­deemer liveth.

Secondly, let us take a survey of Christs sufferings. God the Father covenanted with the Sonne, that for his sufferings he should see his seed. Christ was the second A­dam, by way of representation a publick person. S. August. is clear to this purpose: Primus homo Adam sic olim de­functus est (saith he) ut tamen post illum secundus homo sit Christus; cum tot hominum millia inter illum & hunc or­ta sunt: & ideo manifestum est pertinere ad illum omnem qui ex illa successione propagatus nascitur; sicut ad istum pertinet omnis qui gratiae largitate in illo nascitur. Ʋnde fit ut totum genus humanum quodammodo sint hominis duo, primus & secundus. Our Saviour is oft called the sonne of man, that is, of Adam. Ezechiel with the Septuagint is [...], but Christ is said to be [...], that is, the sonne of the first (Adam) man. He was the next, and one­ly [Page 95] other common person. Had himself been created, or the sonne of some one besides Adam created, either God through him should have been reconcileable towards some who sinned, not suffering, or some should have wanted ac­cesse to Christs merits. Christ, as he was a branch of Da­vid, (Jer. 23.5.) and a rod out of the stemme of Jesse, (E­say 11.1.) so likewise of Adam. This branch offered up to God sanctifieth the tree. Christ declared abundantly that he came to save sinners, by what he suffered for them. He suffered for us what satisfied divine justice. In burnt-offer­ings and sacrifices for sinne thou hadst no pleasure: Then said I, Lo I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me) to do thy will, O God, Heb. 10.6, 7. Gods will ( [...]) here, as in Hebrew [...] oft, and in Chaldee [...] and [...], is that in which God is well pleased. [...] vo­luntas, signifieth as I have said, (viz. beneplacitum). In Jonathans Targum (ancienter then any Scriptures whereof S. Paul was the penman) upon Esay, in a sentence for sub­stance of sense the same with what was quoted out of the epistle to the Hebrews. He thus paraphraseth upon Esay 59.16. Et manifestum est coram eo, quod non sit vir cujus ope­ra bona sint. Et notum est coram eo, quod non sit homo qui stet & deprecetur pro eis: & salvavit eos in brachio forti­tudinis suae, ( [...]) & in verbo voluntatis suae auxiliatus est eis. [...] verbum voluntatis ejus, is no other thing, then his onely begotten Sonne in whom he is well pleased. Christs sufferings, though but short as considered in themselves, nor longer in his expe­ctation, (he could not despair of victory) received vigour from his divine nature, triumphed over the demerits of sin­full men. The sunne of righteousnesse (as Pelbartus alle­gorizing Gods covenant signified by the rainbow) falling into a cloud of passion, is our security against a deluge of damnation. Christ, as he came, so he overcame. He lost not his labour: God cannot be frustrated in his underta­kings. As we may safely believe God in regard of his faith­fulnesse [Page 96] (or truth), so we may safely hope in him in re­gard of his power and authority to perform what at any time he promiseth. He paid a price sufficient for sinnes at all times committed, although his merits become efficacious onely to those who believe. Sufferings are wont to be e­steemed according to the value of persons who undergo them; as what a Magistrate suffereth, much more then what a private person. But neither did our Saviour redeem us at a low rate; He was pleas'd to demonstrate his love to­wards us, by sustaining the wrath of God, and shedding his most precious bloud for us. Sappho tells us, that love came down from heaven cloth'd with purple. Sure I am, that he was of that colour before he returnd thither. [...]. Christ is the rose of Sharon, Cant. [...].1. He is ruddy. Cant, 5.10. Who is this that cometh from E­dom with [...] garments from Bozrah? this that is glori­ous in his apparell, travelling in the greatnesse of his strength? I that speak in righteousnesse, mighty to save, Esay 63.1.

Our Saviours sufferings were much sharpened and im­bittered by circumstances. 1. He was betrayed of one of his disciples. 2. Valued at the rate of a servant. If the ox gore a servant, or a maid, he shall give unto the master thirty shekels of silver, & the ox shall be stoned, Exod. 21.32 3. He died an accursed death. And being found in fashion in a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the crosse, Phil. 2.8. He that is hunged is accursed of God, Deut. 21.23. Gal. 3.13. 4. He was condemned and executed by man whom he came to save. We may here take notice of the omnipotency of di­vine wisdome, which is wont to abuse mens malicious inten­tions. Mens wicked plots and contrivances improv'd by Gods wise superintendency become ecstaticall, produce ef­fects and issues above their own sphere, besides their own nature. God is able and wont to work good out of evil. Hermes tells us, in the fourth of his 100. Aphorismes. that [Page 97] Jupiter configuratus malevolis mutat eorum malitiam in bonum.

Sacraments used by Gods people before & under the Law, looked forward, as these now used by Christians backward to Christ. The Passeover and the Eucharist are pregnant resemblances both of what Christ suffered for us, and like­wise of what benefit we receive from him.See Beza upon Acts 15.20. 1. Cor. 10.18. & 21. Beza is right, as conceiving that the cup of devils, and the table of de­vils (1. Cor, 10.21.) were an appendix of idololatricall sa­crifice, a feast in which idolaters partaked of the altar; and that the cup of the Lord, and the table of the Lord, in re­gard of analogy was fitly opposed to the cup of devils and the table of devils: yet forasmuch as transubstantiation is impossible, there must needs be much dissimilitude between the sacrificiall feasts of heathens, and the Lords Supper, as compared to sacrifices whereof they were appendices. The bread and wine which Christians receive in the Eucha­rist, are not materially, but onely representatively the same thing which was sacrificed for us. The Lords Supper when first instituted by Christ, resembled what he intended to do for us, and since his passion is a commemorative signe of his sufferings: Christ had not yet offered up himself, when he instituted the Eucharist, & administred it to his disciples. He instructs the then present, and ensuing ages, that no tran­substantiation is to be imagined, by injoyning that this ser­vice should be perform'd in remembrance of him, Luke 22.29. 1. Cor. 11.24, 25. Circumcision and baptisme set before us what Christ underwent for us, rather as in its effects, then as in it self. That any are circumcised in the inward man. wash'd from the pollution and guilt of sinne, is wholly to be attributed to Christs merits. In circumcision bloud was shed; both bloud and water streamed out of our Saviours side. He is the fountain of all true Sacraments. Moses by Zipporah is call'd sponsus sanguinum, (Exod. 4.25.) be­cause his life was saved by the circumcision of his sonne. An husband of bloud art thou to me, is translated in On­kelus, [Page 98] For the bloud of this circumcision my husband is gi­ven me. He paraphraseth thus upon the latter part of the verse following, But for the bloud of this circumcision my husband must needs have been killed. The Arabick Inter­preter of the Pentateuch, made publick by Erpenius, upon that comma in the fourth of Exodus, may be construed by this Latine; Et arripuit Tseforah petram, & abscidit prae­putium filii sui, & ostendit inter manus suas, & dixit, Quia sponsus occisus tu mihi. The sense here is the same clearly, that before in the Chaldee. Zipporah circumcised her sonne, because her husband was but as a dead man, o­therwise had been slain.

Thirdly, Christ hath plentifully demonstrated that he came to save sinners, by means which he useth that he may make them partakers of his merits. He useth, saith Cle­mens Alexandrinus in his Paedagog. lib. 1. c. 9. [...], that he may convert them.

1. He puts them in mind of their faults. This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouths, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is farre from me, Esay 29.13. Matth. 15.8. This engine by Clemens Alexandri­nus is called [...].

2. He reprehendeth peremptory sinners, signifieth his displeasure against them and endeavoureth to shame them out of their lewd and vile courses. These reprehensions the Greeks call [...] is defined [...]. They were as fed horses in the morn­ing: every one neighed after his neighbours wife, Jer. 5.6. We have another example Hos. 4.15, 16, 17.

3. God expostulates with froward sinners. Expostulati­on in Greek is called [...], It's [...]. Ex­postulatio est quae artificiali auxilio clam peragitur vitu­peratio, quae ipsa quoque saluti providet, sub integument [...]. What could have been done more unto my vineyard, that I have not done in it? Esa. 3.4. For why will ye die, O house of Israel? Ezech. 18.3.

[Page 99]4. In the next place (I shall onely suggest hints to your meditations) consider how often God repeats threatnings and promises, inculcates rewards and punishments.

5. God chides sinners as refractory, and perverse to their own destruction. This kind of reprehension is call'd by the Greeks [...], and [...]. Wo to the rebellious children (saith the Lord) that take counsel but not of me, that cover with a covering, but not of my spirit, that they may adde sinne to sinn, Esay 30.1.

6. He refuteth sinners. [...] (redargution of sinners) [...]. They have forsaken the Lord, they have provoked the Holy one of Is­rael to anger, Esay 1.4.

7. I may adde his upbraiding of sinners. Then he be­gan to upbraid the cities wherein most of his mighty works were done, because they repented not: Wo unto thee Cho­razin, wo unto thee Bethsaida; for if the mighty works which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I say unto you, that it shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon, then for you. And thou Capernaum which art exalted to heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: For if the mighty works which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodome, it would have remained unto this day, Matth. 11.20, 21, 22, 23.

8. Christ lamenteth the death of sinners. Christ lamen­ted for the folly of Jerusalem, which would not take notice of the day of her visitation.

9. Christ in the Sacraments which he injoyned us, con­descendeth to our earthly apprehensions, rendreth his good­nesse visible, setteth salvation before our eyes.

10. God writeth his laws in the hearts of his elect, en­ableth them to perform what he requireth from them, to believe, to repent, to observe in some measure each pre­cept of the Morall Law. The new covenant is founded up­on better promises, then was the old, Heb. 8.6. God as the [Page 100] Legislatour of the Moral Law, with the Egyptian task-masters, required the full tale of brick, but allowed no stub­ble. He no where promiseth that he would dispense to any in this life (our Saviour excepted) grace enabling to fulfill the Moral Law. Those graces which enable us to observe conditions required in those who shall be saved, are to be referred to Christs merits. He is the Mediatour of this bet­ter covenant. Hence it appeareth that he came to save sinners.

Fourthly, the consciences of Gods children attest abun­dantly the truth of this doctrine. God hath sealed them, and given them the earnest of the spirit in their hearts, 2. Cor. 1.22. and 5.5. Ephes. 1.13. These Scriptures (I con­ceive) do not onely concern the preachers of the Gospel, but exhibite to us the condition likewise of other believers. 1. God immediately inclineth his children to rely upon his goodnesse and free mercy. 2. He teacheth them to be ob­servant of him, as well as to expect good from him; to ob­serve him in duties of both tables. They have experience of reformation in themselves, which they know to be a­bove the strength of nature. They know it to be as impossi­ble for them so to reform themselves, as for a camel to enter through the eye of a needle. They perhaps also some­times conceiv'd (their affections rendring their judgements partiall) that victory over some lust or other, was above the power of ordinary grace, or at least thought that they should one day perish under this or that corruption. How great a change is wrought in their souls, we may judge from that of the Prophet Esay, chap. 11.6. The wolf also shall dwell with the lambe, and the leopard shall ly down with the kid: and the calf and the yong lion, and the fatling to­gether, and a little child shall lead them. We know how hard a task it is to change what's naturall. Can the leopard change his spots, or the blackamore his skin. It's more dif­ficult to change nature it self. Water may for some time loose coldnesse, a quality naturall to it, so as it may retain [Page 101] its nature. Gods children are born again by regeneration, and made partakers of a new nature. Grace wrought in the heart is a pledge of salvation, the first fruits of heaven. This gracious reformation whereof Christians have expe­rience, was purchased hy Christs merits. First, it resem­bles Christs death and resurrection. We may oft by cer­tain lineaments in children discern their parents. Second­ly, the Gospel is the great power of God to conversion. The conversion of souls is above created strength, and God is not wont to cooperate with false means. The Gospel directeth us to Christ, as the fountain of grace and salvati­on. What Manilius fabulously reporteth of Orpheus, is true of Christ.

Et sensus scopulis, & sylvis addidit aures,
Et Diti lacrymas & morti denique finem.

Christ, (that I may omit Sozomen reporting that a tree in Egypt bowed it self in honour to our Saviour there pre­sent; which story, or rather fiction, Scultetus also mentio­neth, exercit. evangel. l. 1. c. 59.) moveth stocks and stones, our stupid and stony hearts. Here's also finis mor­tis, the death of death. The remnant of the distich quoted out of Manilius (& Diti lacrymas) is capable of such an interpretation as may illustrate another argument pro­pounded, viz. that the prevalency of the Gospel over Sa­tans kingdome, demonstrates that Christ came into the world to save sinners. That the Gospel hath prevailed over perversnesse in mens wills and affections, and corruption in their lives, is evident to the consciences of believers, and oft acknowledged by profane persons. Many who will not themselves have Christ to rule over them (sonnes of Beli­al) perceive and confesse in others the powers of godlinesse. Adde the demolition of the Jews Ecclesiasticall policy, the downfall of heathenish oracles,See Plutarch de oracultrum defectu, in his history about the death of the great Pa [...]. the shriekings of damned spirits, the triumphs of the Gospel over heathenisme, over errours and heresies in the Primitive Church, and in later times over Popish superstition.

[Page 102] Ʋse 1. Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. Hence take notice of that great evil which is in sinne. As it thrust our first parents out of Paradise, so likewise occasio­nally brought the Sonne of God down from heaven.

2. Learn we also hence how to esteem the Ministers of the Gospel; they preach true and acceptable doctrine. How beautifull are the feet of them that preach the Gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things? Rom. 10.5. Let a man so account of us as the Ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God, 1. Cor. 4.1. Where­as many sit in darknesse and in the shadow of death, God is known in Judah. Should God send a famine of the word (which judgement he threatens the Israelites, Amos 8.11.) those Gospel-priviledges would be more precious in our sights, which we now in plentifull measure enjoy, but under-value. Then might we say, (Gen. 42.1, 2. almost in Jacobs language) Why look we one upon another? Behold, we have heard that there is spirituall food in such or such a countrey, let us remove thither that our souls may live, and not die.

3. Did Christ Jesus come into the world to save sinners? Let none dare to profane these names in cursing or swear­ing. Corruptio optimi est pessima. Some learned men have conceived (as Plutarch tells us in his Agis and Cleomenes) that as of oxen being dead and rotten there breed bees, of horses wasps, of asses beetles; so mens bodies when the mar­row melteth and gathereth together, do bring forth ser­pents. The grace of God, if turned into wantonnesse, be­cometh the savour of death unto death. And those sink themselves deep into condemnation, whose sinnes mention what should induce to repentance.

4. Neglect not salvation purchased by Christ. O tast and see that the Lord is good, Psal. 34.8. Divine goodnesse hath condescended so farre, that it is obvious to sense, to the sight in a body assumed, born, conversing with men up­on earth, dying, rising from the dead, ascending into hea­ven; [Page 103] but moreover to the tast (Popish transubstantiation disclaimed) in the Eucharist. But to be affected onely with what tickleth our senses, with what pleaseth the fantasie, doth not transcend Popish superstition. We must see Gods goodnesse with our understandings, and tast it with ratio­nall affections. I deny not but both seeing and tasting may well agree to the understanding. The intellect as it con­taineth eminently some one sense, cannot comprehend suf­ficiently Gods clemency. Yet I should chuse rather to at­tribute tasting to the affections. We should at least but Tantalize, if we should see and not tast. We must tast, otherwise we cannot see how gracious the Lord is. We may learn who receive Christ aright, and likewise be inci­ted so to receive him, from John 1.12, 13. But to as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sonnes of God; even to them that believe on his name: which were born, not of bloud, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. Those who receive Christ aright, are not oversway­ed by naturall corruptions, nor yet by the commandments of men; moreover attain somewhat both beyond the reach of nature and education, are by regeneration conformed to Gods will.See Field concerning se­verall degrees of Love, in the Apendix to his third book of the Church, chap. 5 They embrace Christ not onely as a Priest offering up himself for their sinnes, but likewise as a Pro­phet to direct them, and as a King to rule over them. They are made the sonnes of God, and heirs of eternall life, and shall for ever enjoy the presence of God. Bonum, honestum, & utile, & jucundum meet together, as we see, in the re­ceiving of Christ. Christs bloud, the true Pactolus ( [...]) floweth with riches. One drop of it is enough to enrich thousands of worlds to all eternity. Uranople (the new Jerusalem) hath its foundations garnished with all manner of precious stones, Apocalyp. 21.19. If heaven upon earth be so glorious, what shall we conceive of hea­ven in its proper place. As it cannot seem a new thing, that truths so precious should want acceptance, so un­doubtedly [Page 104] some time or other each truth will obtain au­dience. When any of us is in danger of death, or at fur­thest immediately after death, S. Pauls doctrine will be confessed worthy of all acceptation. All who have heard it, and not received it, will acknowledge themselves fools at the day of judgement.

5. Let us offer up all possible praise, honour, glory, and thankfulnesse to the sacred Trinity contriving such a way for our recovery; to God the Father who gave his onely begotten Sonne, in whom he was well pleased, to be a ransome for us; to God the Sonne who suffered an ac­cursed death for us; to that Spirit which sanctifieth us. Let us propagate our thankfulnesse into our lives: Let us not think any peice of self-deniall, any service too deare for God. Christ hath descended lower for us then 'tis pos­sible for us to debase our selves for him. The saints upon earth sing a new song in the honour of Christ; Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: For thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy bloud, out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation, Rev. 5.9, 10. Heaven answers as by an eccho, the musick upon earth in the mean time continuing, verse 11, 12. Worthy is the Lambe that was slain, to receive power, and riches, and wisdome, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing. This song of Angels putteth Christ in the third person. He took not upon him the nature of An­gels: He is nearer to us. All creatures come in as the Cho­rus, v. 13. And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I, saying, Blessing, honour, glory, and power be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lambe for ever and ever. As man began, so he concludes the song, v. 14. And the foure li­ving creatures said, Amen. And the foure and twenty Elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever.

[Page 105]Because there are severall degrees of thankfulnesse, I shall adde to these examples, some motives, which may quicken us in the duties mentioned.

1. We are unable in our own persons to fulfill the mo­rall law. Let us exceed the Scribes and Pharisees, who so farre relyed upon self-sufficiency, that they conceiv'd the Gospel in regard of themselves impertinent doctrine.

2. Could we avoid all actuall transgressions, yet origi­nall sinne is able to damn us.

3. No one merely a creature can supererogate, can spare us any part of his obedience. The blessed Angels, of all creatures most nimble and cheerfull in obedience, have oyl little enough in their lamps for themselves.

4. No one merely a creature, nor yet all creatures could by sufferings redeem so much as one soul. They should al­wayes be suffering, but never satisfie. If any commend any other way to salvation, (as the fulfilling of the morall Law, the intercession of the Virgine Mary, &c.) besides Christ, that proverb mentioned by Aristotle in his Meteo­rologie is verified of him, viz. [...] manus Christi (to wit, nailed to the crosse) is the onely physick for a sin-sick soul. We stand in need (as you see) of Christs merits: but let us preferre ingenuity before necessity, let us expose our hearts to the woundings of a friend. Christ (as Anacreon upon a worse occasion) [...]. Suffer his love to wound your hearts. Meditate returns answerable in some proportion to his sufferings. Let us propagate our thankfulnesse into our lives; and praise and honour God, by doing his will. So shall his will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Let none who maketh profession of Christianity, carry himself scan­dalously. Muta nomen, vel age fortiús.

6. Forasmuch as Christ came into the world to save sinners, and is a sufficient Mediatour, able abundantly to save, let us not seek unto any other. Let us not go about to alienate any part of his office, to conferre honour, pre­rogative [Page 106] to him, upon saints, angels, or images. The Scri­pture speaketh expressely, that in the later times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and the doctrine of daemons, 1. Tim. 4.1. Beza upon the last word of that comma thus commenteth: Notum est quid hoc nomine Platonici presertim intellexerint: sacri ve­rò scriptores noxios illos & impuros spiritus sic vocant. That opus post humum of a late judicious authour inscrib'd, The Apostasie of the later times, well preferreth the signi­fication of that word daemons, which learned Beza seemeth to reject, and fully demonstrates that Gods spirit hath fore­warned us in the Scripture now quoted, to beware of Me­diatours and Mediatresses forged by the Papists.

7. What Christ hath done for us calleth for spirituall rejoycing. And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God, we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the Lord we have waited for him, we will be glad, and rejoyce in his salvation, Esay 25.9. The same motives which I commended to you in the fifth use, will likewise suggest spirits and alacrity in the performance of this duty. The Hollander, when he had obtained from Queen Elizabeth a promise of assistance against the Spa­niard, took for a Motto, Luctor & emergo. We may, sith Christ hath so farre appeared for us, take for our word the name of the altar built by Moses, Exod. 17.15. [...] The Lord is my banner. What greater occasion of re­joycing then invincible salvation? God is the tower of the salvations of his anointed. What Christ hath purchased for us is sufficiently fortified and secured. Those cannot be ex­animated and disheartened by any evil tydings, and crosse events upon earth, whose joy is heavenly.

8. S. Pauls doctrine chastiseth those who murmer and repine at the salvation of others.Vide Socrat. Hist. Eccles. lib. 7. c. 25. The Novatians appre­hended that some sinners were during their lives, to be de­barred from outward communion with the church, whom yet they conceived capable of divine mercy. They either [Page 107] attended not to what our Saviour saith Matth. 12.32. viz. That the sinne against the holy Ghost shall neither be par­doned in this world, nor that to come; or else misconstru­ing S. John. (epist. 1. c. 5.16.) distinguished between that sinne which is unto death, and the sinne against the holy Ghost. Sure I am that those are not utterly rendred uncapable of sharing with us in outward priviledges of the Church, who may for any thing we know, become partakers with us in glory. Howsoever fellow-labourers may murmure against such as enter into the vineyard in the last houre of the day, God is ready at all times to ac­cept all who cleave unto him by serious and unfeigned re­pentance.

9. Let us endeavour the conversion of others, pull them out of the fire. Jude 23. God (as ye see) both by exam­ple and precept requireth this office from us. (And that I may suggest another incitement) what more rationall, then that we should be subservient to Gods ends. Christ came into the world to save sinners, then let us likewise endeavour their salvation.

10. Let us walk charitably and compassionately to­wards all such as are capable of salvation, but more large­ly towards the houshold of faith, Gal. 6.10. If thy bro­ther shall trespasse against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone, Matth. 18.15. Who so shall offend one of these little ones, which believe in me, it were better for him that a milstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea, Matt. 18.6. Besides that men oft times aggravate small faults, with Momus exclaim against the creaking of Venus her pantofle; and sometimes impute crimes to those in whose lives, in whose goings there is best harmony; to reprehend openly intimateth a greater disaffection towards the per­son offending, then towards the offence. Neither is it suffi­cient, not to be ill affected towards Gods children: We must sympathize with our brethren in afflictions. Christ [Page 108] did not onely sympathize with, or suffer for his friends, but condescended to an accursed death for his enemies.

11. Let us do good against evil. Christ came to save enemies. After his example blesse them that curse you, perform good offices to those who despitefully use you. Rom. 5.6, 8. 1. Cor. 8.11. 2. Cor. 5.14, 15. Men are wont to esteem those fools, and to brand them with this ignomi­nious name, who do good to their enemies, who when they are reviled reply not again. This part of honesty is accounted folly. Solomons rule is out of date, viz. When a man is silent, he's to be reputed able to speak. As drun­kennesse is veiled with the name of good fellowship, cove­tousnesse reckoned good husbandry, so pride is ordinarily applauded under the name of animosity and a good spirit. I commend to your meditations, that Christ, when he was condemned, as he was led to be executed opened not his mouth by reviling his persecutours, but by praying that their sinne might not be laid to their charge.

The last part of my text yet remaineth, viz. the Epi­logue, whereof I am cheif. S. Paul here applyeth his do­ctrine to himself, and omitting other mens faults confesseth himself the greatest of sinners. I shall here onely exhort every one to take a survey of himself, and to be a follower of S. Paul in his faith, charity, and humility.


¶ An Appendix to the former Treatise.

I Am come to the end of my stadium, but not of my dolichus. It remaineth after the contents of my Text explain'd, that I re­presse some groundlesse opinions, which vie with S. Pauls doctrine both for truth and acceptablenesse.

Those who have affirmed that Aristotle was Christs prodromus in naturall sciences,See Salmeron. tom. 1. p. 380. as John Baptist was in su­pernaturall mysteries, may be dismissed with laughter.

I am not able nor willing to give a catalogue of all those empty curiosities, frothy conceits, ecstaticall paradoxes, brain-sick phansies, Bethlehem ravings, which have been obtruded for truths authentick or fundamentall. I shall single out some one or two, which may be here seasonably chastized, as not permitting the circumstantialls of Christs coming into the world to retain their due rank and order, but thrusting them forward into equipage with what is most substantiall in religion.

One conceiveth that to misinterpret our Saviours two genealogies, (one of which, viz. that in Matthew chap. 1. contains his pedigree as he was [...] the sonne of a kingdome; the other of his naturall descent) is, at least in regard of bad consequences, an errour not veniall. The falsity of this petty conceit is easily deprehended; but also some other may occasion discourse (as much as I may conveniently superadde) more profitable.

Another will fear, least the history of Christs birth, un­lesse the positure of the place in which he was born, in re­spect of the parts of heaven (or the superiour world), its longitude and latitude be duely attested, may in processe of [Page 110] time (in mens opinions) vanish into a fiction. Either expe­rience or reason (that I may not object the [...] of sa­cred Scripture) might challenge a better opinion concerning succeeding ages. Its well known, that many have given full credit to divine stories, (who never consulted with any map) who knew not in what parts of the world the scenes were si­tuate. Many true believers are uncapable of such knowledge. Sacred Scripture oft wholly omits the circumstance of place.

I shall not need to repeat here what hath been said before against Astrologers, who have imagined that the time of God the Sonne incarnated, was de­termined by the starres. I could wish that none out-strip'd them in madnesse and blasphemy. Those conceive, some of them, that God hath design'd the starres for harbingers of what he intendeth to bring to passe in the sublunary world; others who ascribe to thē efficacy above their sphere of acti­vity, acknowledge that it was conferred upon them by God. To subordinate an eternall God to time, to make omnipo­tency depend upon times and seasons, to affirm that God could not sooner or later have perform'd what was requi­site for the redemption of sinfull men, that he could not but effect what things were done or suffered for us, at what times they were accomplished, farre surpasseth the wildest conceits of vainest Astrologers. No one who is compos sui, will imagine that God more depended upon time for the union of the two natures of Christ, or his suffering death for us, then in the creation of the world. Time had no existence, before the Genesis of the world begun. Time, saith Spensippus, is [...] with the Stoicks it's [...] after Plato [...]. Aristotle neither expresseth what thing time is, nor adequately what things are thereby measured, describing it [...]. The rest quo­ted expresse not the relative nature, or formality of time. Motions measure themselves, and other motions distinct from them; and beings which were for their kind com­plete, [Page 111] (or all whose parts coexisted) in the least time, and in the least part of time conceiveable as well as those which were extended into succession, were made up of prius and posterius. [...] Saturn, the same that [...] time, with the Poets is the of-spring of heaven; with Eratosthenes [...], the motion of the sunne. I cannot with these con­fine time to the heavens. I cannot see but that the motion of a sublunary body may measure the duration of things, and consequently be called time, agreeably enough to reason, and some authorities cited. I conceive there was no arti­ficiall motion before man was created: but certainly there was naturall, at leastwise of the firmament, or of the earth. Whether or no Angels are able to comprehend the durati­ons of things permanent, without some measure applyed, or extrinsecall time, I shall not need to determine. Moneths and years (most properly so called) are the same with the proper motions of the Moon and Sun. We owe dayes (whether naturall or artificiall) as they denote time, to the motion of the earth; or else to the common, or participa­ted (that I may so speak with Philosophers) motion of the Sunne. Time as distinguished from eternity (which limita­tion I insert, as knowing how largely some late authours have used the word) necessarily succeeded (it's existence sup­posed) in order of nature, somewhat created. It is clear that time depended upon the Creation, not God about to create the world upon time. Old Saturn should now be more aged, had God been pleased to have anticipated the creation. Neither can I see how God is intrinsecally more determi­ned to one time (whether imaginary or reall) rather then another in creation, and the sending of his Sonne into the world, then to one person before another in election, and the application of Christs merits.

I know also who thought it a crime mortall, not to assent without doubting, that the number of years between mans creation and his redemption, might be infallibly gathered from Scripture. Others deem that events mentioned in sa­cred [Page 112] Scripture, as the Exodus, and the destruction of the first Temple, the beginning and end of the seventy years capti­vity; God the Sonne incarnated; Christs nativity, passion, resurrection and ascension,See bold De­terminations concerning the dayes of the birth & death of Adam (that I may quote authours not inaccessible) apud Joannem Stadium, Astro­nom. Histor. pag. 17. & Doctiss. Selden. De Ann. Civ. vet Judaeorum cap. 8. pag. 44. &c. may be applyed to years moneths and dayes on which they came to passe in Cycli­call accompts.

Chytraeus in a preface to his lectures upon Herodotus and Thucidides, determineth both which were the years and dayes of Christs incarnation and passion. As for the year of his birth, he approveth our common accompt,See Origan. Ephemerid. part. 1. c 1. Lansbergius in the dedication of his three books of sacred Chronol. Jo­seph. Scalig. in Pro [...]egom. ad libros de Emend. Temp p. 22. & de emendat Temp. l. 6. Sethus Calvisius Isagoges Chronol. cap. 46. Gerardus Johan. Vossius, de natali anno Christi, p. 11. which (as it is well known) is re­jected by Chronologers of best judge­ment. We have not a clear computa­tion of the years between our Savi­ours birth, and the first assembly at Nice, transmitted to us. Neither is it agreed what time interceded between his birth and passion. He assum'd our nature, (if we may beleieve Chytraeus) on the 25. of March, and 34. years after sufferedChrysost. and August. went before him in this opinion. The Tesserescae­decatitae boasted, that they had learn­ed from the acts of Pilate, that Christ suffered on the 25 of March. Epipha­nius reporteth that he found an Histo­ry of the acts of Pilate, which told him that Christ suffered on the 15. of the kalends of April, (that is, on the 18 of March. on the same day of the moneth. On the same day (accor­ding to this Authour) 1509 years backward, (or before his incarnati­on) the first passeover was celebrated by the Israelites before their Exodus from Egypt. And our first parents on the same day, 2453 years upward were created.Euseb. and many after him in several ages, affirm that Christ rose from the dead on the 25 of March, on which day (they conceive) the world was created, not more to be excused then Chytraeus. 'Tis not difficult to discover how Chronologers, both Jewish and Christian dissent from this Doctour, were it lawfull to digresse so farre. Its obvious to suspect him, with many others, to be seduced by an ambition of making things answerable in nature, to be likewise sutable to in time. He had an eye [Page 113] upon the correspondency between the first and the second Adam, and between man form'd, and reform'd. Again between the Paschall Lambe and the Antitype, the Lambe which taketh away the sinnes of the world. Christ (saith Chrysostome) ought necessa­rily to suffer on the 25th of March, because he was on that day conceiv'd. Moreover be­tween Christs coming and the end of his coming, He came to save sinners. He assum'd a body, that he might be fitted to suffer for mens iniquities. His conceits were much to be applauded, were they as true as specious. Our Jewish Doctours, as I have learned from Jose Ben Chilpe­tha, in sedor Olam Rabba, chap. 4. and 7.Seder olam Rabba, (the Jews great Chronicle of the world, from the Creation to the reigne of Adrian) is attributed to R. Jose. Ben. Chilpetha, by Alsted. in his Chronologie of Jewish Doctours, by Buxtorf. in his bibliotheca Rabbinica. Mr. Selden, de diu Syru Syntag. 1. c. 2. p. 100. & de jure naturali & genti­um, lib. 1. cap. 10. p. 124. videtur se­ipsum in fine libri prodere. dum inquit [...] inquit R. Jose (saith Buxtorf.) But R. Jose is frequently quoted in that Chronicle. (was he, as he is supposed, the authour of the trea­tise) were much tickled with such like fancies. Astrologers also (whom I have already mentioned) who feigned most remarkable events to be nearer one to another, or more remote then true Chronologie permitted, that they might seem introduced and effected by seve­rall great conjunctions of Saturn and Jupiter. We are wont to be much af­fected, when we hear that effects which have some famous relation or respect one to another, or are each of them eminent above vulgar events, have faln out on the same day of the moneth, especially if they be many years distant. And many study to write what's pleasing more then what's true. 'Tis our comfort that we may believe the second person of the sacred Trinity was incarnated and born, although we know not punctually the time of his birth or incarnation.

Celebramus tam nos quam Judaei quin­quagesimum diem, sed illi in typo; nos autem in veritate, non tam significamus quam agimus. Pentecosten igitur celebrantes, commemo­ramus quae olim sub Mose in veteri testamento sunt acta, & quae sub Christo facta sunt.Cyprian (serm. de Spiritu sancto) and many writers after him affirm, that the gift of tongues was dispensed at the feast of Pentecost, that there might be correspondency between the two Testaments. The new Law (the Gospel)Esay. 2.3. Kimchi (upon this comma) affirmeth that the last dayes perpetually in the old Testament signifie the dayes of the Messias. [...] went out of Sion on the day, on which the old law given [Page 114] on mount Sinai was commemorated. Christ was born about the feast of tabernacles; near the time of the immola­tion of the Passeover, was offered for us. A fast for en­trance into the land of Canaan deny'd to the Israelites, who provoked God in the wildernesse, and desolations of the first and later Temple, is observed by the Jews on the same day, viz. the 9. of Ab, their fifth moneth. [...] (Seder olam Rabba cap. 30.) that is, (that I may use Genebrards translation) Auctore R. Jose, devolvitur meritum in diem meriti, & peccatum in diem peccati. Exempli gratiâ. Quando Tem­plum primò destructum est, dies ille erat vespera Sabbati, atque adeò extremum anni septimi (id est, remissionis) erat etiam custodia & hebdomas ipsius Joarib, itémque nonus dies Ab, similiter quando secundo est eversum: atque in utraque eversione Levitae stabant in suis sugge­stis & dicebant Canticum. Quodnam, obsecro, canticum? Et reddet illis iniqui tatem ipsorum, & in malitia eorum disperdet eos, disperdet eos Dominus Deus noster. On the ninth of Ab these rythmicall verses are wont to be sung in the person of the presbytery.

Die nona mensis, hora vespertini temporis,
Cùm essem in vigilia mea, vigilia Joiarib,
Introiit hostis, & sacrificia sua obtulit.
Ingressus est in Sanctuarium injussu Domini.

[Page 115]The first Temple is said to have been destroyed, when it was fully demolished. They began this work on the seventh day of the fifth moneth, finished it on the ninth, and burned the materialls of the temple on theSee Jer. 52.12. tenth. Chap. 27. of the Jews great Chronicle. What Chytraeus asserted is not hence confirmed. So much will seem clear, unlesse what ordinary experience refuteth, be thought ne­cessary, viz. that there should be the like correspondency between times, as between events which fall out in them. Contingent attributes have not the like reason to the whole kind, which they have to one, or more individualls. Be­sides that there is much difficulty about the day of the Jew­ish moneth, on which Christ celebrated his last Passeover, and consequently about the day of his Passion, no histories so well inform us concerning the number of years by which the affairs of the Jews and their forefathers were compu­ted from the creation of the first, to the death of the second Adam; and acquaint us with the generall rules (which sure were not the same throughout so long time, and so many changes both of their habitation and politie) to which all their years were conformed, and particular occasions, by reason of which their moneths and years ofttimes varied, as that we may be able to reduce events, describ'd by their times in sacred Scriptures, to their due positures in any cy­clical account. Those merit laughter rather then refutation, who conceive that the feasts observ'd by the Jews, return­ed annually on the same dayes of Julian moneths. [...] We shall easily believe that the day of Christs incarnation is unknown if we conceive the day and yeare of his birth uncertain. Some Chrono­logers have been confident, that authentick registers with­out assistance of humane writings, fully declare the di­stance of time between the creation of the first, and birth of the second Adam. But if we endeavour to give an ac­compt of that segment of time, we shall meet with many rubbs and difficulties.

[Page 116] We cannot be certain without revelati­on, in what quadrant of the yeare our Sa­viour was born; but probably may con­ceive, at, or neare the beginning of the Hebrew yeare, as for reasons alleadged by Scaliger, (De emendat. Temp. lib. 6.) so also by the authorities of Jews, who expect the birth of their Messias in the moneth Etha­nim; and by the testimony of Cyrill. A­lexand. witnessing that the Church of A­lexandria celebrated the nativity of John the Baptist, on the 28. of Pharmuth, that is, as some compute, on the 23. of April.Gerardus Joannes Vossius in his Treatise, De mense diéque na­tali Jesu Christi, reciteth foure fa­mous opinions concerning the day on which Christ was born. The ancient Romane Church assigne to Christs nativity, the 8. of the ca­lends of January, that is, the 25. of December: Greek Churches the sixth of January;Eutychius placeth our Saviours birth in the 29. of Choiac, which answereth to the 25. of December: The Alexandrine Chro­nicle foure dayes sooner. some of the Egyptians the 24. or 25. of Par­muthus, others the 25. of Pachon. Many other opinions might be ad­ded concerning the day of Christs birth. Beroaldus, Scaliger, others, confesse that their skill is here non-plus'd, upon the moneth (at most) conjectur'd, inscribe their nè plùs ultrà, acknowledge that it's onely in Gods power to define the day of Christs nativity. Tacen­te Scripturâ, taceamus & nos, & Christum Servatorem in tempore natum adoremus, et si in quo temporis puncto natus sit, ignoramus. Scultetus Delit. Evangel. cap. 14. See chronology distracted about this point, ibid.

The yeare of the world likewise in which Christ was born, is uncertain: Certè de vero natali Christi anno, tot fere sunt sententiae, quot chronologi. As humane writers are almost every where uncertain, so also much divided a­bout pieces of time, of which they endeavour to give us an accompt, one from others, and sometimes the same from himself. That the yeare of Christs birth may be clear'd from Scriptures, first its requisite that it be fix'd in Daniels seavens. That this may be attain'd, it's necessary to know how farre his baptisme was on this side the beginning of those sevens. At his baptisme he began to be about thirty years old, Luke 3.23. There's no where else throughout the New Testament any expression of his age, which can without the mediation of this, be reduc'd to any determi­ned [Page 117] yeare in Daniels weeks. Christs passion by some thought to precede the end of Daniels sevens exactly three years and an half, cannot be discovered to be any set time distant from his birth, without the intercession of humane authours, or the place quoted in S. Luke. First, the parti­ciple [...], hath occasioned in some a suspition, that he was but then in his 29. yeare. This scruple's easily re­moved. He began to be, that is, he was; as he began to say the same that he said, Matth. 11.7. The word [...], is conveniently omitted by the Syriack Interpreter. The par­ticle [...] more perplexeth, intimateth that he was not just thirty years old, but somewhat more or lesse. Epiphanius lib. 2. tom. 2. haeres. 51. affirmeth, that Christ at his bap­tisme wanted 60. dayes to complete the distance from his birth into thirty years. It's further requisite in order to the end mentioned, to know whether or no Daniels sevens suc­ceeded immediately the 70. years captivity; how wide the chasma, if any. Furthermore, that numbers of parts of time preceding, in which the age of the world is thought to be contained, be clear and remote from all perplexities. I shall demonstrate, but with as much briefnesse as may be convenient, that there is so large variety of opinions con­cerning events before and after Christ born, to be applyed to certain years in Daniels weeks, 7. 62. 1. and the half week; touching the space of time contained in them, their Epocha, and whether or no they were continuous; moreo­ver such difficulty about other segments of time prece­ding, that conditions shewed to be necessary for the infalli­ble reducing of the yeare of our Saviours birth to a determined yeare from the Creation, must needs all be wanting.

The two first articles of time, to wit, one from Adams Creation to the Floud, the second from the Floud to the promise made to Abraham, Gen. 12.3. according to Be­roaldus and Broughton, and some other Chronologers, con­tain 2083. years.

[Page 118]

The vulgar Hebrew.
  • Gen. 5.3. From Adams creation till he begat Seth, years 130.
  • Gen. 5.6. Seths life till he begat Enos 105
  • Gen. 5.9. Enos his life till he begat Cainan 90.
  • Gen. 5.12.
  • Cainan's life till he begat Mahalaleel 70.
  • Gen. 5.15.
  • Mahalaleels life till he begat Jared 65.
  • Gen. 5.18. Jared's life till he begat Enoch 162. Pentateuch. Samarit. −100
  • Gen. 5.21. Enoch's life till he begat Methuselah 65.
  • Gen. 5.25. Methuselahs life till he begat Lamech 187. Pentateuch. Samarit. −120
  • Gen. 5.28. Lamechs life till he begat Noah 182. Pentateuch. Samarit. −129
  • Gen. 5.32. The age of Noah when he begat his first son 500.
  • Gen. 11.10. The age of Shem when he begat Arphaxad 100.
  • Gen. 11.12. The life of Arphaxad till he begat Salah 35. Pentateuch. Samarit. +100
  • Gen. 11.14. The life of Salah till he begat Eber 30. Pentateuch. Samarit. +100
  • Gen. 11.16. The life of Eber till he begat Peleg 34. Pentateuch. Samarit. +100
  • Gen. 11.18. The life of Peleg till he begat Reu 30. Pentateuch. Samarit. +100
  • Gen. 11.20. The life of Reu till he begat Serug 32. Pentateuch. Samarit. +100
  • Gen. 11.22. The life of Serug till he begat Nahor 30. Pentateuch. Samarit. +100
  • Gen. 11.24. The life of Nahor till he begat Terah 29. Pentateuch. Samarit. +40
  • Gen. 11.26. The life of Terah till he begat his eldest son 70. Pentateuch. Samarit. −60
  • Gen. 11.32. Terahs life after he begat his first son 135. Pentateuch. Samarit. −60
  • For the dayes of Terah were 205. years.
  • The land of Canaan was promised to Abra­ham after his fathers death, as we may clearly gather from Gen. 12. and Acts 7. and immedi­ately after his death, as seems to be intimated by these Scriptures. God at the same time pro­mised that the Messias should issue from the loins of Abraham, Gen. 12.3. In thee shall all the families of the earth be blessed.
  • The distance between them and Noahs eldest sonne according to Broughtons ac­compt 002.
  • Noah was 500. years old when he be­gat his first sonne; 600. years old when the floud of waters came upon the earth, Gen. 7.6.
  • [Page 119]
    Said Batricid. affirmeth that when the floud came upon the earth, [...] that Noah was 600. years old, and that his sonne Sem was an 100. years old. This Authour is wont with more then ordinary facility to be false and fabulous. Ramban ob­serveth (in Parascham [...]) that Sem is said to be the brother of Japhet the elder, Gen. 10.21. Sem (saith he) is preferred [...] by reason of his dignity. So the sonnes of Abraham, Isaac and Ishmael, 1. Chron. 1.28.
    Sem was an 100. years old two years after the floud, Gen. 11.15.
  • The totall summe is 2083.

Many difficulties may be objected, which much perplex this computation.

1. It may be questioned whether or no the lives of the Patriarchs are to be reckoned punctually from the times at which they are said to have been begotten. The affirma­tive part is most probable; otherwise sacred Chronologie (in which I cannot suspect that there is any hiatus) should be discontinuous. I doubt not but authentick Scriptures exhibite to us a continued order of times from Adams crea­tion to the end of Daniels weeks, & that expressions used by those who were Spiritus sancti amanuenses, were intelligi­ble to all of ordinary judgements who were contemporary, to those also at least who lived in ages not much remote.

2. It may be enquired, what to beget signifieth, in the 5. and 11. chapters of Genesis. Adam probably (that I may give an instance) begat Seth according to the sense of the Scriptures, when Seth was born. Besides that what was begotten was then manifested, Marinus in's Arca Noae thus interpreteth the word used in the Originall. [...] genu­it, peperit, parturiit, proprium foeminarum videlicet, quam­vis eleganter de viro etiam & aliis rebus dicatur.

3. The distance between Sem and Noahs eldest sonne is questioned. Wolphius (de tempore lib. 1. pag. 50.) affirm­eth virtually, that three years interceded. Arphaxad (he saith) was born (whence we may take notice that in his opinion likewise to be begotten, was the same that to be [Page 120] born) three years after the beginning of the floud. Noah was 500. years old, when he begat his eldest son, Gen. 5.32. He was 500. years old, and begat Sem, Ham, and Japheth; that is, he begat none of them till he was of such age. They were not any of them in the wombe together. Noah was 600. years old when the floud of waters came upon the earth, Gen 7.6. Sem was 100. years old two years after the floud, Gen. 11.10. I conceive with Broughton, that the floud is the same that the beginning of the floud in that Scripture. So Chronologers speaking of years from the Temple, mean from the Temple built, not from the same demolished.

4. It's altogether improbable that each of the Patri­archs mentioned in Gen. 5. and 11. was exactly of that number of years, which is attributed to him when he begat another, or when he died. I cannot doubt but in those chapters quoted, years current are oft reputed years, as well as those which were complete: which granted, the particulars before summ'd up for the two first articles of time, must needs exceed the distance of the promise from the creation. The like happeneth in the chronologie of the Kings of Judah and Israel, but with this difference:See Empe­reur in his comment up­on Jachiades on Daniel, c. 1. v. 1. and David de pomis, there quoted. But I must confesse, I cannot perceive that the year [...] which the Kings of Israel reigned, were more reckoned by the years of the Kings of Judah, then vice versa. See 2. Kings, 12.1. and 14.1. 2. Kings 16.12. 2. Kings 16.1. 2. Kings 18.1. & passim. Of the years which this or that king was said to reigne, both the first and the last were sometimes incomplete, here pro­bably onely the last of years attributed to this or that Pa­triarch, whether for the time from his birth, till he begat a sonne, or between birth and death.

5. There's much difference (which I esteem a difficulty insoluble) between the Samaritane, and the vulgar Hebrew Pentateuch. According to the Samaritane. Pentateuch, Ja­red lived 62. years, and begat Enoch. Gen. 5.18. Jared lived after he begat Enoch, Nè mireris Lector, è Pen­tateuch [...] Sama­ritano citata li­teris exarari Caldaeis, (seu Hebraeis recenti [...] [...].) [...]phus Samaritanis (quibus antè captivitatem Babylon. usa est tota Hebr [...] [...]) defici [...]batur. [...] [Page 121] [...] 785. years, &c. v. 19. [...] 785. years, &c. v. 19. And all the dayes of Jared were 847. years, v. 20. And Methu­selah lived [...] 67. years, & begat Lamech, v. 25. And Methuselah lived after he begat Lamech [...] 653. years, v. 26. And all the dayes of Methuselah were [...] 720. years, v. 27. And Lamech lived [...] 53. years, and begat a sonne. v. 28. And Lamech lived after he begat Noah [...] 600. years, and begat sonnes and daughters, v. 30. And all the dayes of Lamech were [...] 653. years, v. 31. The Samaritane Penta­teuch addeth to the end the eleventh comma of the eleventh chapter of Genesis (as in usuall copies) [...] And all the dayes of Sem were 600. years, and he dyed. The dayes which Arphaxad, Sa­lah, Eber, Peleg. Reu, Serug, Nahor, lived, are after the same manner distinctly summed up, otherwise then in usu­all Hebrew. And Arphaxad lived [...] 135. years, and begat Salah, Gen. 11.12. And Ar­phaxad lived after he begat Salah, [...] 303. years, and begat sonnes & daughters, v. 13. And Salah lived [...] 130. years, and begat Eber, v. 14. And Salah lived after he begat Eber [...] 303. years, and begat sonnes and daughters, v. 15. And Eber lived [...] 134. years, and begat Peleg, v. 16. And Eber lived after he begat Peleg [...] 270. years, and begat sonnes and daugh­ters. v. 17. and Peleg lived 130. years, and begat Reu, v. 18. And Peleg lived after he begat Reu, 109. years, and begat sonnes and daughters. v. 19. And Reu lived 132. years, and begat Serug; after he begat Serug, 107. years, and begat sonnes and daughters. v. 20. And Se­rug lived 130 years, and begat Nahor. v. 22. And Serug [Page 122] lived after he begat Nah [...]r 100. years, and begat sonnes and daughters. v. 23. And Nahor lived [...] 79. years, and begat Terah. v. 24. And Nahor lived after he begat Terah [...] 69 years, and begat sonnes and daughters, v. 25. And the dayes of Terah were 145. years, and Terah died in Haran, v. 32. Besides differences between the Samaritane and ordinary Hebrew, about years which other Patriarchs lived after they had begotten their immediate successours in the catologues of the generations of Adam and Sem, that about Terah together with those about the years which they lived before they begat, amount to 231. years. The space of time from Adams creation to the promise made to A­braham, by the Samaritane Pentateuch so much exceedeth that exhibited in the ordinary Hebrew. 2083. and 231. added, complete 2314.

For the facile understanding of those two columns, in which the common accompt and the Samaritane are com­pared together, take these rules.

Oughtred clavis Mathe­maticae, c. 1. Signum additionis, sive affirmationis, est + plus.

Signum subductionis, sive negations est − minus.

6. Cainan mentioned Luke 3.36. as father to Salah and sonne to Arphaxad, hath 130. years allowed him by the Septuagint, for the space between his birth and the birth of Sala, Gen. 11.13. yet is not mentioned in the usuall or Samaritane Hebrew.

7. Forasmuch as the next article of time containeth ex­actly 430. years, as is clear'd by Exod. 12.41.The greater part of He­brew commen­tatours upon Gen. 1.1. and chap. 7.8. Exod. 11.2. Jonathan Ben Uziel upon 1. Kings 8.2. Josephus Archaeologia Judaice, lib. 1. cap. 4. consent that the world was created at, or near the beginning of Autumn. Its sufficiently known, that many other, both ancient & late writers, have entertained the same opinion. See Elias Cuchlerus in his dissertation de Tempore Mundi conditi. In that Treatise he giveth a competent accompt of them, as also of those who have conceived the world was created in the spring. Besides that those who held the world was created in Autumn, are prevalent in credit, were more able then their Antagonists to decide the controversie in hand, authentick Scriptures countenance their assertion. Its probable the trees in the garden of Eden, were created conformable to the season of the year. We are certified that they bare fruit before the fall of our first parents. This argument (I acknowledge attending to the diversity of conditions of some climates, and some other reasons) onely perswadeth, but doth not demonstrate that the world was created in Autumn. The beginning of the yeare was changed at the Exodus, Exod. 11.2. Had Nisan been the first moneth of the Hebrews year, before their Egyptian bon­dage, they of their own accord without any command, would after their delive­rance have reassumed it for the first of moneths, and the first moneth of their yeare. Moreover, God injoyned them the observance of Nisan, as a memoriall of their deliverance from Egypt. Lastly, the tenth of Tisri was to Israelites the day of atonement for the yeare past, and the beginning of the yeare of Jubilee. Levit. 25.9. [...] Prim [...] die Tisri initium anni anni [...], & dimissionibus, & Jubileis. Thus the Talmud in Massecheth Rosch Haschanah. Josephus in the place prais'd, telleth us that Moses for humane affairs retained the ancient order of the yeare after the Exodus. [...]. Thysius Exercitat. Miscellan. 4. after his second thoughts bids adieu to his opi­nion that the world was created in the Spring. if the world was created in Autumn, (which is most probable) we must needs grant that besides complete years, an half year interceded between the beginning of the world and Abrahams peregrination.

[Page 123]The next joynt of time is lesse knotty, yet not wholly exempted from perplexity. Tht Law was not given till 430. years after the promise made to Abraham, Gal. 3.17. The Law which was 430. years after cannot disanull the covenant that was confirmed afore of God, in respect of Christ. The 430. years mentioned, Exod. 12.40. are the same with these, onely 50. dayes interceded between the departure of the Israelites from Egypt and the Law given on Sinai, a number not considerable.

Whereas we read in our English translation for that text of Exodus quoted, the dwelling of the chil­dren of Israel, while they dwelled in Egypt, was 430. years, we ought thus (as doth Master Ainsworth) to translate the originall: The dwelling of the sonnes of Israel who dwelt in Egypt was 430. years. Moschabh in this Scripture, signifies peregrination, or abode in strange countreys, viz. Canaan and Egypt. The dwelling of the children of Israel, is that peregrine dwelling which con­cerned [Page 124] the children of Israel. Their fathers, as farre as A­braham, are are to be taken in. We may together with the sonnes of Israel, as well comprehend their fathers as their sisters. Onkelus in his Chaldee paraphrase, exactly expresseth the Hebrew, but is as unhappily translated into Latine, as the Hebrew into English. The article, which ought to be referred to the children of Israel, is unduly re­ferred to their peregrination, and so their peregrination wholly related to Egypt. The 72. interpreters, (in which, the dwelling of the sonnes of Israel, which they and their fathers dwelt in the land of Egypt, and the land of Cana­an, are 430. years,) apprehended the true sense. These 430. years added to 2083. preceding, (according to M. Broughtons accompt,) complete 2513. The 400. years, in which Abrahams seed should be evil entreated, (Gen. 15.13. Acts 7.6. are to be reckoned from the time, in which Ismael the sonne of Egyptirn Hagar, began to afflict Isa­ac. Isaac, when six years old, might understand Ismael mocking him. We must not conceive that all intermission of afflictions, and Lucida intervalla, are to be excluded from these 400. years. The whole distance between the beginning and the end is to be attended.

From the children of Israel coming out of Egypt, to the building of the temple, were 480 years. (1. Kings 6.1.) These added to Broughtons 2513.) preceding, make up 2993. I should omit lesser numbers (mentioned in sa­cred Scripture) of which the 480. years, (in the first of the sixt of the first of Kings,) are compounded, did not the twentieth verse of the thirteenth of the Acts, suggest a scru­ple to be removed. In the Scripture the time of Judges, viz. between Joshuah and Samuel, is 450. years. Moses led the Israelites 40. years in the wildernesse. Joshua go­verned the Israelites 17. years after Moses his death. 40. years are given to Saul. Acts 13.21. The time which Sa­muel judged Israel, is comprehended with the reigne of Saul, in that number. David reign'd 40. years, 1. Chron. [Page 125] 29.27. And Solomon 4. years before the temple began to be builded. The summe is 141. The time for judges (A­bimelech's three years are included) between Joshuah and Samuel is 450. years. These numbers added, make 591. And so exceed that mentioned. 1. Kings 6.1. by 111. years.Beroaldus is of the same opinion with Mr. Brough­ton. Luther and Beza for [...] read [...]. Who desire more variety, may see the ancient Latine translation, the Arabick translated into Latine by Junius, (which omitteth 40. years given to Saul in the verse following, that it may make more room for the 450.) The Arabick Testa­ment set out by Erpenius, expresseth Sauls 40. years. See a reading also of the 20. verse of the 13. of the Acts, of which we speak, transcribed by Beza out of a Greek copy printed at Paris, conform'd to the ancient Latine. M. Broughton with admirable subtilty and acutenesse, conceives that in the twentieth of the thirteenth of the Acts, where the time for judges is said to be 450. years, the numbers of years for defenders of Israel, and those for offenders are added together.

The years for offenders are expressed in six texts of the book of Judges; for Chusan, 8. (Judges 3.8.) Eglon, 18. (Judges 3.14.) Sisera, 20. (Judges 4.3.) Midian, 7. (Judg. 6.1.) Ammon, 18. (Judg. 10.8.) Philistines, 40. (Judg. 13.1.) the totall summe is 111.

We find in Judges twelve places for the defenders of Is­rael. So many particular numbers of years for them, a­mount to 299; which Elies 40. years make up 339. These added to 111. make up the number afore-mentioned in the Acts. The times of Israels afflictions mentioned in the book of Judges, are contained (as the learned Authour al­ready prais'd conceivs) in times given to defenders. Their Judges came sometimes by the worse. Yet in the 13. of the Acts, after what manner some segments of a line to the whole) are added to the whole time between Joshuah and Samuel. Master Broughtons wit perhaps in this conceit is to be preferred before his judgement. Some places in Judges seem clearly to intimate, that the times of sufferings were not comprehended in the years attributed to those who judged Israel. Part of the third chapter much patro­nizeth [Page 126] this opinion. In the 11. verse Othniel died, when the land had enjoyed rest fourty years under his govern­ment. Then the children of Israel again committed wic­kednesse in the sight of the Lord: and the Lord strength­ened. Eglon king of Moab aginst Israel, because they had committed wickednesse before the Lord. And he gather­ed unto him the children of Ammon and Amalek, and went and smote Israel, and they possessed the city of palm-trees. So the children of Israel served Eglon king of Mo­ab eighteen year [...], vers. 12, 13, 14. But when the children of Israel cried unto the Lord, the Lord stirred them up a saviour, Ehud (in the verse following). The children of Israel cried unto the Lord, when they had been vexed 18. years. Ehud saved them not till after they cried unto the Lord. The 80. years mentioned in the 30. verse, cannot contain all the time from Othniels death to the end of E­huds affairs. 'Tis said that the land had rest 80. years. They wanted rest (which seemes to be clear from what hath been quoted) 18. years, immediately succeeding the death of Othneil. Rest here cannot be conceived to be any other thing, then freedome from vexation by enemies. As great a difficulty is suggested by the 8. of the 10. of Judges. 18. years of affliction there mentioned, cannot well be conceiv'd, if we consider the context, to have preceded the death of Jair, who judged Israel 22. years; nor can possi­bly be reckoned to have fallen out in the time of Jephta, the succeeding Judge, who ruled but six years, and deliver­ed Israel from these afflictions. S. Pauls words taken in that sense which is most plain and simple, may well con­sist with what we find in 1. Kings 6.1.

The holy Ghost pleased to register the time of the build­ing of the Temple, takes for an Epoche the deliverance of the Israelites from Egypt, a type of deliverances (in which Christ to be figured by the Temple should be the Ante si­gnanus) from spirituall Egypts, the power of Satan in Heathens and in Antichrist. That Epocha also was very [Page 127] accommodate, in that the Temple was to Gods people a pledge of temporall deliverances. If in the lands of their enemies they should pray toward it, God would heare in heaven, and answer upon earth; would upon their repen­tance restore them to their countrey. Times of afflictions which they had suffered, are conveniently omitted in the accompt, as which would have eclipsed and obscured the lustre, the pomp and glory of present happinesse. Tears are wiped from their eyes, and the times of their adversity not remembred.

Times in which the building of the second Temple was hindred (as Empereur believes upon the ninth of Daniel) are neither part of the 7. nor yet of the 70. weeks menti­oned by the Angel Gabriel.See also Ras [...] upon Ezech. 4.5. Josephus much countenan­ceth my conjecture, in his Jewish Antiquities, lib. 8. cap. 2. [...]. Solomon began the building of the Temple in the fourth yeare of his reigne, in the second mo­neth which the Macedonians term Artemisius, the Hebrews Jair, 492. years after the Israelites exodus from Egypt. He makes no mention of years for offenders in the book of Judges doubled, viz. comprehended in the years for de­fenders, moreover superadded. He admitteth into his ac­compt the yeare immediately preceding the 40. of Moses leading the Israelites into the wildernesse, (in the end of which the Israelites came out of Egypt) also the fourth of Solomons kingdome (in the beginning of which the tem­ple began to be builded). No one will condemn his judge­ment, who hath seen Emperour upon Dan. 1.1. He there approveth this way of computing upon another occasi­on. Plùs minùs may venially be understood (though not expressed) for years current, and parts of years completely past. I am lesse willing to believe that Josephus erred as adding two years above those due for the space between the [Page 128] deliverance of the Israelites from Egypt, and the building of the Temple, in that he substracteth two years due for time between Adams creation and the said period. [...]. He alloweth onely 3102. years for time between the first man born of God by creation, and the Temple begun to be build­ed. Between the Creation and the Temple, if we take in besides the years for those who judged Israel, 111. years for intervals in which the Israelites were oppressed by their enemies, and the yeare in which the Temple began to be builded, interceded 3104. years. He alloweth for the time between Terahs death & the building of the Temple 1020. years, between the floud and the temple 1440. For the first one yeare, for the other, if he mean from the be­ginning of the rain which caused the deluge, six years short. It necessarily followeth that he must have reckoned 4. years too much between the creation and the floud. I may not here omit, how Josephus in his second book against Apion, is inconsistent with what I have quoted out of his 8. book of antiquities, concerning distance of the building of the Temple from the deliverance of the Israelites out of Egypt. [...]. Solomon builded the Temple 612. years after the Jews came out of Egypt.

Sulpitius Histor. sacr. lib. 1. starteth another dif­ficulty about the times of Judges. He objecteth an inter­regnum between Samson and Heli. Ambigit (that I may propound his scruple, as represented by Sigonius) quot anni intercesserint inter Samsonis exitum, & Heli Pontificatum, ac judicatum, quòd id scriptura non prodi­derit, ac post Samsonem [...]er Israel sine regibus fuisse ad­jecerit. Sigonius subscribeth this answer: Cum Heli 40. annos judicasse dicitur, primo Samnelis, cap. 4. intelligen­dum est illos annos complecti, & interregnum ante Heli, & [Page 129] pontificatum ejus. Atque ità Eusebius, & caeteri obser­varunt. That interregnum (as Sigonius judgeth) was comprehended within the 40. years attributed to Samuel.

Lastly, The authour of Seder Olam Rabba (cap. 12.) substracteth one yeare from 23. and 22. attributed to To­lah and Jair, (Judges 10.) [...] because it was given to each of them, viz. reckoned the last of To­la's 23, and the first of Jair's 22. He substracteth a yeare likewise from those given to Jephthah and Ibzan, concei­ving the last yeare of Jephthah was the first of Ibzan.

The Temple began to be builded according to Master Broughtons accompt in the 2993. yeare of the world. So­lomon reigned 40. years, 1. Kings 11.42. The kingdome was divided immediately after his death. 1. Kings 12. verses 1, 2, 16, 17, 19, 20. so we have 37. years from the foun­dation of the Temple to the division of the Kingdome. (The Temple was founded in the beginning of the fourth yeare of Solomons reigne.) To these 37. years adde 390. Ezech. 4.5.Beroaldus is of the same judgement, as computing 408. years, for that article of time between the foundation of the Temple, and 70. years of the Babylo­nian captivi­ty, which he reckoneth from the first yeare of Ne­buchad-nez­zar. Lansberg. also consenteth Chronol. sac. l. 2. c. 6 and Capell. Historiae sacrae & Exoticae l. 1. The summe is 427. the space (as Master Broughton thought) between the foundation of the Temple and the last captivity. These added to the age of the world (as computed by the same authour) at the found­ing of the temple, make up 3420. years. The breach of the covenant made between God and the Israelites at the building of the Temple, as Junius conceives is the epocha of 390. years mentioned by Ezechiel, which he disposeth towards the end of the 27. yeare of the reigne of Solo­mon. Then (as this authour conceives) began that ido­latrous rebellion against God, which was both an exem­plary and meritorious cause to the ten tribes revolting from the house of David.See Junius upon Ezech. 4.5. He concludeth these 390. years in the deportation made by Nebuzaradan, Jer. 52.30. that is, in 23. years of Nebuchad-rezzar. The 40. years for the iniquity of the house of Judah, Ezech. 4.6. are according to the same Commentatour, the last of the 390. Josiah's reformation, (he thinks) had not this antidote been in­terpos'd, [Page 130] might have occasioned a presumption of Gods displeasure removed. Rasi maketh the 390. years discon­tinuous; the entrance of the Israelites into Canaan the be­ginning, the deportation of the ten tribes, the clause of them. See variety of opinions about these, and the 40. years for Judah, in Abarbinel upon Ezech. c. 4. Besides the difference mentioned between Junius and Broughton about the Epocha of Ezechiels 390. years, Bullinger reckoneth the duration of the first temple, years 440.

  • Gualtherus 435.
    With whom Flin­spachius agreeth.
  • Mangoldus 420.
  • Bibliander 432.
  • Mercator 428.

Others might be added dissenting from these and amongst themselves. Sure authours now quoted, and others as they consented not all of them about the number of years to which Ezechiels 430. dayes answered, (Ezech. 4.5, 6.) were also much distracted about the Epocha of years there exhibited. It's an hard task to remove this difficul­ty, neither can I jurare in verba magistrorum, who af­firm that the 40. dayes (Ezech. 4.6.) which Ezechiel was commanded to lie on his right side, signified the same years, that 40. of the 390 dayes in the verse preceding. These Scriptures nakedly considered, will seem to expresse the contrary:

If I anatomize this joynt of time which I have now in hand, I shall meet with more perplexities. Solomon reigned after he began to build the Temple, 36. years at least, as may be gathered from 1. Kings 11.42. compared with 1. Kings 6.1. Rehoboam 17. years, 1. Kings 14.21. Abi [...] 3. years, 1. Kings 15.2. Asa 41. years, 1. Kings 15.10. Jehoshaphat 25. years, 1. Kings 22.42. Jehoram seemeth to have reigned five years, by 1. Kings 22.42. verse 51. of the same chapter, and 2. Kings 1.17. c. 8.25. compared together. Ahaziah one yeare, 2. Kings 8.26. Ath [...]liah 7. years, plùs minùs. compare 2. Kings 11.4. [Page 131] with the preceding verses of the same chapter. Joash 40. years, 2. Kings 12.1. Amaziah 29. years, 2. Kings 14.2. There succeeded an anarchie of 13. years, or thereabouts. For in the 15. yeare of Amaziah King of Judah, Jero­boam the sonne of Joash King of Israel began to reign, 2. Kings 14.23. Azariah (called likewise Uzziah and Ozias) the next King of Judah after Amaziah, began to reigne in the twenty seventh yeare of Jeroboam, 2. Kings 15.1. Substract from 27. the complement of 15. as they are a part of 29. viz. 14. (so many years Amaziah and Jeroboam reigned together) there remain 13. for the space between Amaziahs death and Azariah's inauguration. A­zariah reigned 52. years, 2. Kings 15.2. Jotham 16. years. 2. Kings 15.33. Ahaz 16. years, 2. Kings 16.2. Heze­kiah 29. years, 2. Kings 18.2. Manasseh 55. years, 2. Kings 21.1. Amon 2. years, 2. Kings 21.29. Josiah 31. years, 2. Kings 22.1. Jehoahaz 3. moneths, 2. Kings 23.31. Jo­hoiakim 11. years, 2. Kings 23.36. Jehoiachin 3. moneths, 2. Kings 24.8. Zedekiah 11. years, 2. Kings 24.18. The summe is 440. years. 6. moneths. The difference be­tween this and that approved by Beroaldos and and Brough­ton, is 13. years and six moneths. Imperfect years, where­with Kings of Judah began and ended their reigns, and parcels of time in which some of them reigned together with their fathers, inextricably perplex this way of com­putation.

To 3420. years adde 50. years, the remnant of the ca­ptivity after the burning of the Temple mentioned 2. Chro. 36.19. The summe's 3470.

Beroaldus and Broughton are of opinion that the 70. years of the Babylonian captivity are to be reckoned from the first yeare of Nebuchadnezzar King of Babel. Brough­ton alledgeth for proof of his assertion, Jer. 25. v. 1. and 11. These Scriptures evince that God denounced against Judea 70. years desolation, in the first yeare of Nebu­chadrezzar King of Babylon, but not likewise that the [Page 132] desolation began in the same year. Junius upon 2. Chron. 26.21. conjectureth that the 70. years of captivity began à deportatione Jehoiachinis sive Jechoniae. But neither can so much be evinced from Ezech. 40.1. upon which he relyeth for confirmation of his opinion. [...] The word there used, is not peculiar to that deportation or ca­ptivity. That the 70. years are to be reckoned from the burning of the Temple, or some time afterward, seems to be cleared by 2. Chron. 36.21. compared with those verses of Jer. 25. now quoted. To fulfill the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah untill the land had en­joyed her Sabbaths; for as long as she lay desolate, she kept sabbath, to fulfill threescore and ten years. The 70. years desolation seem onely to have been foretold, and threatned in the first yeare of Nebuchadnezzar, and begun to be fulfilledScalig. in Prolegom. ad libros de E­mendat. Temp. & alibi. Lan­sbergius Chron. Sacrae l. 2. c. 1. In Seder olam Rabba, c. 29. The 70. years of desolation are bounded by the destruction of Jerusalem and the first Temple, and the building of the second Temple. The Israelites (accord­ing to the authour of that Chronicle) after they had lived in the kingdome of the Chal­deans 52. years, were restored to their own countrey. To these 52. years are added 3. years for Cyrus, 14. of Ahassuerus, one whole yeare for Darius. In the second yeare of Darius the Temple was builded. The same Epocha is assigned by the Authour of the Jews great Chronicle, to the 70. years desolation, and to Daniels 70. weeks. at the demolishing of Jerusalem,Wolphius de Tempore, lib. 1. cap. 6. or when some reliques of the Jews went into Egypt, that is, with­in a years space; or else in the 23. yeare of Nebuchad-rez­zar, when Nebuzaradan carried away captive of the JewsJer. 52.30. 745. persons, (which came to passe within the space of five years at most after the burning of the Temple.)

Seventy sevens of years mentioned Dan. 9.24. (that is, 490. years) make up the age of the world, (according to Broughtons computation)Wolphius addeth 31. years, De Tem­pore lib. 1. c. 6. 3960. years. The last of those, as Broughton, andIbid. Wolphius, andIn his Harmonie of the Evangelists, upon Luke 3. v. 21. M. Lightfoot (with some others) conceive, was the yeare of our Saviours pas­sion. His birth, according to M. Broughton, preceded by [Page 133] the space of 33. years and an half. He placeth it in theScaliger ad­deth 20. years. 3927. of the world. The time of Christs death (saith he) shall be after seven seventies. These sevens are divided into three parts: and proper stories joyned to the first and the last part:Wolphius is of the same o­pinion. Hic temporis arti­culus incipit ab anno primo Cy­ri, qui Jubilae­us fuit, & desi­nit in Jubilae­um omnium jubilaeorum lae­tissimum & ce­leberrimum, veritatem in­quam illius umbrae, in an­num passionis Domini. De tempore lib. & cap. citatis. To these adde as consenting for the beginning of Daniels sevens, Lansbergius, Empereur, Huit, &c. Seven of them from Cyrus first yeare, and permission to return to build Jerusalem, (Esay 44.28. Ezra 4.12.) shall passe before they shall have walled it. Thence are 62. sevens to the last seven, set apart for the Lord his preaching. Of that last seven the first part is passed in si­lence, as for a preparation: [...] may signifie, in the latter half of the last week. that latter half doth Christ bestow in confirming the Testament for many; beginning at his baptisme, ending at his death. The Temple was 49. years in building,Empereur upon the ninth of Daniel, much differeth from Broughton in his accompt of the seven first weeks, or 49. years, and somewhat concerning the 46. years mentioned John 2.20. A primo anno Cyri, quo per totam regnans Asiam (non tantùm in Persia, vel etiam Chal­dea) copiam faciet Judais Templum, &c. aedificandi, usque dum per Xerxem opus impedi­atur, excurrent anni 46. His fermè aedificabitur Templum; quamvìs intereà varii va­ria sint molituri. Opus deinde continuè perficietur; sed intermittetur ad annum secun­dum Darii Nothi: quo resumptum ad fastigium perducetur circa annum illius 6. id est, spa­tio ad minimum 3. annorum: quos si addas praecedentibus 46. exurgent anni 49. id est, se­ptimanae septem. The seventy weeks (as he thinks) concern'd onely times in which the city and temple should be builded, and the city inhabited. Times in whi [...]h the building was intermitted, that is, 107. years, as Joseph Scalig. computeth, De emendat. Temp. lib. 6. were rather to be esteemed an appendix of the captivity, the part of the inlarge­ment. The 46. John 2.20. are reckoned after the third of Cyrus, in which the building was hindered by Artaxast. Thus farre the authour prais'd. After Junius his accompt, siege began to be laid to Jerusalem by Vespasian, in the fifth yeare of the last seven.

Empereur upon Jachiades is of opinion, that the last week succeeded the thirtieth yeare of Christ born, in which he was baptized; and that he suffered in the middle of this week; to wit, Christ in the middle of the last seven, should put an end to sacrifice and oblation, by offering himsself [Page 134] once upon the crosse for all. [...] (Dan. 9.27.) the half week comprehended three years and an half, or foure years and an half (ut medium, sic & dimidium Hebr. la­te sumitur). Hee's rather for the greater number. Christ was born in October, suffered about the time of the Passe­over. Thence ariseth the half yeare above three or foure whole ones. The last half of the last week reached to the Gospel begun to be preached by the Apostles to the Gen­tiles. The same authour conceivs that the seventy weeks were not continuous. So you have also his judgement. M. Mede in his Daniels weeks, maketh the sixth yeare of Darius Nothus (when the Temple was finished) the Epo­cha of the seventy weeks, and placeth the destruction of the Temple and city by Titus, in the midst of the last week. Those who reckon by years, when the yeare designed an­swereth the event, will not stand upon the completenesse of moneths and dayes; nor those who reckon any thing by dayes, upon the completenesse of houres and minutes: no more in the angels reckoning here by weeks, if so the num­ber of weeks be complete, are the part of a week to be exa­cted. If the angel had said, that 490. years were allotted for the holy city, then to make good the prediction, the city must have been destroyed in the lost yeare. But when he sayes 70. weeks, 'tis sufficient that the destruction happen­ed in the last week. So you have the judgement of another judicious writer.

Joseph Scaliger (de emendat. temporum lib. 6.) dissent­eth from all other writers whom I have seen upon this sub­ject, as adding the half week, (Dan. 9.27.) to 7.22.1. (or 70. Dan. 9.24.) His seventy weeks and an half, con­tain 493. years and an half: the beginning of which he reckons from the second yeare of Darius Nothus, that is, from the 4290. in the Julian period; the end of them in the destruction of Jerusalem, in the 4783. of the Julian ac­compt.

Funcius begins to reckon from the seventh yeare of Ar­taxerxes [Page 135] Longimanus, between which and Christs passion he accompts 490. years.

Some terminate 70. weeks in the beginning of Herods kingdome, that is, (according to Scaliger) in the 4675. yeare of the Julian period, from which the 490. backward, will fall into the 4187. yeare of the same accompt, and (ac­cording to the same authour) into the second of Camby­ses. Munster conjectures, that the seventy weeks succeed immediately the 70 years captivity, and are terminated in the beginning of Herods kingdome. Herod (as Scaliger computes) reign'd 37. years before the nativity of the Messiah. Master Huit in's comment upon Daniel, placeth the beginning of the seventy weeks in the first yeare of Cyrus, conceivs the end of them was the beginning of the Gentiles called, and Jews rejected. Scaliger comme­morates other opinions (De emendat. Tempor. lib. 6. in Epilogismo Hebdomadum Danielis) Its controverted as we see, whether Cyrus his edict was the Epocha of Da­niels sevens, or some time on this side it, and at what time since Cyrus his decree by those of the later opinion; more­over whether they expired before or after Christs birth; if after his birth, whether at his passion or afterward; if after his passion, whether at the destruction of Jerusalem, or before it: likewise whether or no the angels prophecie ex­hibite exactly seventy weeks; by those who defend the af­firmative part, whether seventy continuous or interrupted; by those who are for the negative, whether more or lesse time. Both those who hold that the seventy weeks expired before Christs birth, and those who place the end of them between Christs passion, and the destruction of Jerusalem, are divided into severall opinions.

[...] R. Jose numerandas docet hebdomadas 70. ab excidio templi prioris usque ad posterioris (per Romanos) excidium. Seder Olam Rabba, cap. 28. Seder Olam Zuta assigneth the same bounds to Daniels sevens.'Twas an easie matter to adde many other both late and ancient writers, who assigne Epocha's and [Page 136] periods to Daniels weeks differing among themselves, and from these mentioned, were not these produc'd al­ready (authours excellent in parts and learning, more­over who stood upon the shoulders of Rabbins, and Christian writers of the Primitive Church, and Hea­thens, whose writings may illustrate historicall and chronologicall parcels of sacred Scripture) sufficient to make any one suspectParùm inter se consentiunt, qui rationem temporum in­vestigatam e­diderunt. Quod cum vel Dei nutu, vel viti [...] vetustatis eveniat, calumniá carere debe­bit. Sulpitius Severus. that nothing can be attained beyond conjectures for any event after Christs birth, terminating all or any known part of Daniels weeks.

Israelites who lived between the seventy years captivity and the birth of the Messiah, might receive comfort from Daniels prophecy, although uncertain concerning the di­stance of events foretold. Although it was not clear to some of them, how long the building of their city and Temple should be interrupted, nor whether or no those times of affliction to be excepted from the seventy weeks, yet might all of them be supported with glad tidings of great joy shortly to be accomplished, & fore-armed against evils that should befall them. Neither do I doubt but that howsoever they were disturb'd by their enemies, they kept almost till the destruction of the Temple, an exact accompt of years past on this side the angel Gabriels prophecy to Daniel; so that believers among them might be much con­firmed in their faith, and comforted by apprehensions of divine providence, as they saw events listed, to issue out at their appointed times. We can easily believe that many of their records did perish in their warres with Vespasian and Titus, before, or with their city. Those who fled to Pella probably neither had leasure or power to secure them. Somewhat might be alledged against each of the ac­compts (for Daniels sevens) quoted. I entertain as most probable,

1. That Cyrus his decree concerning the holy city and [Page 137] the Temple to be reedified, was the beginning [...] [...]hiels weeks. Quis audità prophetiâ de edicto, postea Cyri edi­ctum audiens secus cogitasset, quàm hoc in prophetia de­signatum fuisse? Thus Empereur in his discourse to the Rea­der, before his Comments on Jachiad. on Daniel. At cu­jusmodi mandatum Dan. 9.25. denotatur, ab Artaxerxe promulgatum non legitur; verùm de Cyro res in confesso est: similiter Darius Nothus novum edictum non promul­gavit, sed Cyri mandatum approbavit & confirmavit at (que) explicavit, Ezr. 6. coll. cum 1. capite. idem ibid.

2. That the Holy of holies may seem to have been an­ointedOur Media­tour was then inauguriz'd, an heavenly Oracle pro­nouncing him to be the Son, or Mediatour, & requiring al to heare him. Huit. upon Daniel 9. at his baptisme; consequently when about thirty years old, by Luk 3.23.

3. That afterward in one week he confirmed the cove­nant with many; by himself before his death, by his disci­ples after his resurrection.

4. That the seven weeks preceded whole 62, and 62 the one week, and that the half week was part of the one.

5. That the half week was the first part of the one week.

6. That at the end of this first half of the last week Messiah wasThat is, was slain. In a Manuscript Syriack trans­lation of Da­niel (& some other parts of the Old Testament) a precious [...] of the Publick Library of our University at Cambridge, nethketel meschicho velo eith leh Messiah is slain, and there is not to him. cut off. I cannot apprehend how after 62. weeks, or 69. from the beginning of the seventy weeks, can signifie the same, that at the end of the one week, or at the end of the seventy weeks.

I cannot but observe before I proceed, that the Jews af­ter their seventy years captivity, have seven seventies of years granted for the enjoying of their own countrey. Gods mercies bear the same proportion to his punish­ments, which seven a complete number hath to an unite.

It's a task of vast difficulty (as we see already) [...] applicare [...]. We shall conceive the time of Christs birth, and the distances of other events ( [...] [Page 138] [...] from the creation, yet more uncertain, if it can be proved that the quantity of all or any years between the creation and our Saviours nativity is unknown to us. Those who have undertaken to measure out to us years mentioned in the Old Testament; or those used afterward by Jews till the destruction of Jerusalem are many of them of such note, and so much dissent among themselves, that the authority of each is inconsiderable, compared with other who oppose it. But moreover all of them have builded up­on false grounds, if Jews for any part of time mentioned had not certum anni modum, by which in any yeare pre­sent they might form a Calender of the yeare following. That the antecedent is true, is averred by a learned writer, the glory of his age M. Selden in his Treatise de anno civili veterum Judaeorum.

Jews anciently began their civill moneths,Cap. 1. p. 3. as they were parts of ye [...]rs (say the Karites or Scripturary Jews) from the phasis of the moon after a conjunction, if she ap­peared in theHere under­stand vespe­ram tertiam, seu initium te­nebrarum, non crepusculum, neque temporis spacium ab oc­cidente sole ad occasus finem. See my Au­thour, cap. 4. pag. 16, 17. evening beginning the thirtieth day, rec­koned from the Neomenia last past; or (if she was not seen in that evening) together with the sunne on the thirtieth day (but so as the whole day should be counted the first of the new moneth).Cap. 12. pag. 61, 62. If clouds intercepted the moon throughout the thirtieth day, they expected a phasis on the day succeding, and if the moon was seen on the eve­ning which began this day, or together with the sunne near his setting, the 31. day was sanctified; but if together with the sunne ( [...] dum fuerit dies maguus) die aperto, viz. two or three houres before sunne set, the thirtieth day was to be sanctified. Talmudists, if the moon was seen on the thirtieth day, reckoned that the first of the moneth; but if on that day there was no phasis,Cap. 3. p. 13. pro ar­bitrio, the 30. or 31. after the new moon next prece­ding.

If the phasis of the moon, was for many moneths to­gether intercepted by clouds, 'twas in use according to [Page 139] Karites, to make many (but so as the number should not exceed foure,) complete moneths together. See that oracle of Antiquity before quoted, in the said work, c. 4. p. 18. the reason for which they admit not above foure complete moneths continually succeeding one another, is also there expressed. But according to that sect of jews there might not above three defective moneths continually succeed one another. See learned M. Selden De Anno Civili vete­rum Judaeorum, cap. 4. p. 19. yet we are perplexed with more uncertainty by reason of interculated years. The reasons of intercalation were not the same with Talmu­dists and Karites. Karites conceive no other reason was anciently attended in intercalation, then that the passeover might be celebrated in the moneth Abib (that is, tempore maturescentium frugum) according to what commanded Deut. 16.1. Observe the moneth of Abib, and keep the passeover unto the Lord thy God: for in the moneth of A­bib the Lord thy God brought thee forth out of Egypt by night. Talmudists conceive that the vernall Equinox was also regarded; that, unlesse 12. moneths onely being reputed for a yeare, the vernall Equinox should fallJosephus (Archiologiae Judaiecae l. 3. cap. 10.) affirmeth that on the 14. of Nisan the sunne was in Aries. His words inti­mate that he meant for the whole space of time between the Exodus and the last de­struction of Jerusalem. [...]. Others have taken notice of this sentence, Lansbergius Chronol. sacra l [...]b. 1. c 7. Master Selden de Anno civili veterum Judaeorum, cap. 20. Any one clearly seeth that the Passeover could not precede the vernall Equinox, unlesse it was celebrated before such time as the sunne entred Aries. Forasmuch as the fixed starres have made progresse in the Zo­diack, or else the sunne hath anticipated the vernall intersection, the entrance of the sunne into Aries, (Sive hoc nomine indigitetur dodecatemorion intersectioni vernae proximum versus tropicum cancri, vel dodecatemorion ariete signatum) cannot possibly precede the vernall Equinox, Josephus (I conceive) by [...]ries meaneth the Dode­catemorion (or 30. degrees) next after the vernall intersection, but in the sentence praised meaneth that the sunne on the 14. of Nisan was in Aries according to the opinion of Jews, not attending whether or no it was so in truth. If the sunne was in Aries perpetually on the 14. of Nisan (as Josephus affirmeth) the immolation of the passeover, (or 14. of Nisan) could not fall on the day before, much lesse (what Karites admit of) by some dayes prevent the vernall Equinox. It followeth also from the same testimonie approved that the day, on which the Jews did eat the passeover, (or 15. of Nisan) the vernall Equinox being fastened on the 25. of March, could not fall later then the 26. of Aprill: but part of Nisan might fall within May. Sol in ariete moratur dies 30. b. 15. on the day after the immolation of the passeover, (viz. the 15. of Ni­san) [Page 140] or sooner in the yeare following, a thirteenth moneth ought to be added, that so Nisan might be protruded. Quo­nam (verò) temporis momento aut die in certorum atque in se aequabiliter recurrentium annorum, veluti Egyptio­rum aut Julianorum, calculo, aequinoctium vernum seu Tekupham Nisan, sic dictam collocarint Mathematici ve­terum Judaeorum, non liquet. See my Authour, c. 6. p. 24.De Tempore Dominicae pas­sionis. Gerardas Joannes Vossius saith, that the jews before Au­gustus his Empire plac'd the Vernall Equinox in the third of Aprill. Aliae fuere intercalandi causae, eaeque fermè triplices; ut serotina frugum, agnorum, hadorum matu­ritas; itinerum ad urbem ducentium incommoda, veluti pontes diffracti, aquarum colluvies, viae canosae; & mini­mè idoneus fornacum Hierosolymis agnis paschalibus as­sandis status. chap. 5. of the elaborate work quoted, con­cerning the Jews civill yeare. Quin & aliae fuere subinde nec minùs incertae intercalandi causae, pro arbitrio eorum qui huic rei praerant. Ibid.

According to the scheme of 7. years in the noble trea­tise before praised, De Anno civili veterum Judaeorum, c. 6. p. 26. (The vernall Equinox is placed ex hypothesi in the 25. day of March in the Julian yeare, and in the first of 7. years the first day of Nisan answereth to the 23. of March in the Julian accompt; moreover the sixt yeare is ex hypothesi intercalated propter serotinam fructu­um maturitatem pravisam, itinerum incommoda, fornacum defectus, alia ejusmodi, quorum causâ, pro arbitrio qui rei praecrant, intercalatione annali usi sunt,) the first Passe­over (or fourteenth of Nisan) falleth on Aprill 5. the [Page 141] second on March 25. the third on Aprill 12. the fourth on Aprill 1. the fifth on Aprill 21. the sixth on Aprill 10. the seventh on Aprill 20.Yet greater variety is ex­pressed by Mr. Selden De An­no civ. vete­rum Judao­rum, c. 9. p. 51. His words are these. Ex osten­sis liquet, ita citra ultraque vagari solitum Nisan mensem, seu anni civilis primum, ut non solum tam Aprilem quam Martium, verum etiam Mai­um Julianum subinde occuparet. Neomeniam autem ejus die undecimo Martii, juxta jam admissa, nunquam fuisse citeriorem. So much variety happeneth in so little space. I shall conclude this part of my discourse in the words of my authour (in his Preface p. 12. 13.) Frustranea sunt chronologorum maximorum argumenta quibus nimio cum sudore contendunt ex Cycliea seu astro­nomicâ temporis, apud Judaeos, ratione adeoque ex 14. Innâ in ipsa passione dominica (quasi illâ die 14. à Sy­nodo naturali alilérve astronomice evenisset) vera passi­onis, paschatum in novo foedere, ac demum nativitatis, retrò putando, tempora [...]ruere.

Why Jews anciently, whether Talmudists or Karites, did not rather expect the phasis on the 29. then on the 30. night after a full moneth, I cannot divine. Although the phasis, should no grosse body be interposed, between mans sight and the place of the moon in the skie, observe not alwayes the same distance from a conjunction, yet there seems to be the same reason of expecting the appearance of the moon in the 29. night after a solid moneth, and on the 30. after an hollow moneth. Neither do I compre­hend what hindred them, whether after a moneth of 29. or 30. dayes from beginning a new moneth from the first appearance of the moon after a conjunction, although it happened before the 29. day.

It remaineth that I explain, when Karites conceive the beginning of the moneth, or Neomenia, began first to be reckoned from the first phasis of the moon after a con­junction; or if the moon was not seen in the night imme­diately succeeding the 29. of the moneth, from the be­ginning of the next following, &c. or yet where Talmudists fix the Epocha of their manner of accompting before men­tioned, not much distinct from that of the Karites.

[Page 142]How farre I may call years mentioned in the old Te­stament, Jewish, wants generall consent. Calvine upon the epistle to the Romanes, chap. 2. v. 17. conjectureth that the Israelites some time before Christs birth, by reason of disturbances from their enemies were disinabled to distin­guish exactly their tribes. He addes, Sive igitur in po­sterum prospicere voluerint, sive accepto jam malo suc­currere; puto simul omnes ad nomen ejus tribus se contu­lisse, in qua religionis puritas diutius steterat, in qua re­demptor expectabatur proditurus: siquidem hoc erat in re­bus ultimis suffugium, Messiae expectatione se consolari. Josephus in the eleventh of his Antiquities conceives, that the Israelites were called Jews from Judas Macchabeus. But in his second book against Apion, the Israelites who came out of Egypt are called Jews. His 20. books which contain the history of jews and their Ancestours from the creation, are entitled (I know not by whom first) [...]. Talmudists hold that their doctrine concerning moneths to be inchoated by the phasis, and years to be intercalated, was ( [...]) traditio Mosaica è monte Sinai, and was to be executed by the Sanhedrin in the holy land. May­mon, Halach, Kiddush-hachodesh. c. 5. I find in Seder olam Rabba. c. 11. [...] (according to Genebrards translation) Hac illa hora Israelitae coeperunt obligari & astringi ad praecepta de polenta, & de praeputio, & neomeniâ. (He speaketh of the houre next after the Israelites passage over Jordan.) But I conceive that by chodesch he meaneth the moneth Nisan to be observed as the beginning of the yeare, rather then the phasis of the moon. By challah he mean­eth the feast of unleavened bread. Who desire to be in­form'd, at what time the Talmudists left off their uncertain accompt, may have recourse to M. Selden, De Anno Civ. vet. Judaeorum, c. 17. p. 80.

The manuscript Karite used by M. Selden, affirmeth that [Page 143] the Israelites [...] from the time of the kingdome san­ctified their moneths at the phasis of the moon. This place I find praised in an elegant discourse composed by the owner of that manuscript authour. What M. Selden (de anno civili veterum Judaeorum, cap. 4.) quoteth out of the same Karite, importeth that the Karites imagined their lunatick observations as ancient at least as the de­luge. Perhaps they thought they were for some time inter­mitted. The 150. dayes mentioned Gen. 7.24. and chap. 8.3. they conceive to have for their Epocha the 17. day of the second moneth (which they suppose to have been Jiar) on which Noah entred into the Ark, and to expire at the end of the seventeenth day of the seventh moneth, on which the ark rested on the mountains of Ararat. If Jiar and the foure moneths next following had all been solide, the summe should have been 151. dayes. Hence they con­clude, that about foure solide moneths ought not to be continuous. Besides thatThe authour of Bereshith Rabba, Jarchi, and others (af­ter Eliezer) in Parasch. Noah Seder Olam Rabba, c. 4. some Jewish writers conceive, that 150. dayes which the waters are said to have pre­vailed on the earth, succeeded the 40. dayes of rain.According to Seder Olam Rabba, c 4. the last day of the 150. in which the wa­ters prevailed, was the last of Jair; and the ark began to rest upon the mountains of Ararat on the 17. of Siwan (which was the 7. moneth to Casleu, in which the 40. dayes of rain ended) Nach­manid. in Pa­rasch [...] tells us that some reckoned the 150. dayes for the prevailing of the waters to reach to the 17. of Nisan; and the 17. of the 7. moneth, on which the ark rested on the mountains of Ararat, to be the 17. of Jair, the 7. to Mar­cheschvan in which the rain began to descend. Some that space is to be allowed after the 150. dayes for the a­baiting of the waters, before the ark rested upon the mountains of Ararat, and though neither of these opinions should be true, 'tis not necessary that the 17. day of the second moneth, and 17. of the seventh moneth, should be included in the 150. dayes; whence will they evince that there were not fewer then foure solide moneths continuous: or if they will admit as many solide together as are possi­ble by their suppositions concerning the 150. dayes in which the waters prevailed, how will they prove that the seventh moneth was hollow, viz. but of 29. dayes?

Another place in Eliah Ben Moseh, (quoted by my au­thour so oft already praised, cap. 10. p. 54.) clearly expres­seth that Scripturary Jews esteem their way of computing years as ancient Noah. Nullibi reperimus (for this Latine [Page 144] well interpreteth the Originall) in Scriptura praeceptam hoc (de sanctificandis Neomeniis) peculiare fuisse terrae Israeliticae. Sed verò manavit â seculis vetussimis ade­óque à tempore Noachi & Abrahae Patris nostri (quibus paex) mos ille sanctificandi lunam quocunque locorum. Some perhaps will object against Eliah Ben Moseh, what Josephus saith of Apion, (lib. 2. against him,) [...] non animadvertit à seip­so adductum quo coargueretur. Karites, who are wont to confine themselves rigourously to written truths, are zea­lous beyond Pharisees for an orall tradition, by which they may parcell out time into moneths, and years. They are easily reconciled to themselves. It's no unusuall thing, that some one objection should hinder a rule from being generall. If either sect of jews report truth, 'twas some­times impossible to make before-hand a Calender for the year following: neither are we enabled by any histories to reduce dayes of such uncertain years, as have been men­tioned, to their due positures in any equable accompt.

Joseph Scaliger (as also many other writers before and since) affirmeth two things, from either of which granted it necessarily followeth that moneths and years, such as I have described according to the opinions of Tal­mudists and Karites, were not used in our Saviours age.

1.De emendat. temp. l. 2. pag. 105. Lansber­gius compen­diously shews how the Jewish and Grecian years (in his opinion) dif­fered, Chron. sa [...]r. l. 1. c. 11. He contendeth that Jews from what time the Syro-Macedonians became Lords over them till after the destruction of Jerusalem used a cyclicall accompt, viz. Calippus his period, which consisted of 76. years, 27759. dayes, 940. Lunations; contained foure metonicall cycles, one day subducted. (I shall not need to explain how the Jews according to Scaliger, varied from Calippus in the disposition of full and hollow moneths, sith it sufficeth to my purpose to shew that Scaliger thought they used a cyclicall accompt, and what were the reasons of his o­pinion.)

2. That translatio feriarum was in use throughout the same segment of time,

[Page 145]The first assertion he endeavoureth to confirm by the te­stimonies of Josephus, and R. Adda. This Doctour assi­gneth to the Jewish yeare 365. dayes, 5. houres, scrupl. 997/1080. moment. 48/76. Quid aliud vult (saith Scaliger) quàm periodum Judaicam fuisse annorum 76. R. Adda's pe­riod of 76. years, (asDe emendat. temp. l. [...]. pag. 109 & lib. 4. pag. 279. Scaliger thought) were the same with so many of Hipparchus his period (which beareth the same proportion to Calippus his period, that Calippus his period to Meton's) that is, Calippus his peri­od, one quadrant of a day subducted.Hipparchus intra sexdecem cyclos lunares unum diem de rationibus Ca­lippicis perire sentiebat, Scal. de emen. temp. lib. 4 p. 282. Hipparchus his pe­riod contained 111035. foure Calippicall periods 111036. dayes, sixteen Metonicall periods 111040, dayes.

The noble Authour prais'd endeavoureth also to com­mend his opinion by Josephus his authority. He alledgeth, De temp. emendat. lib. 2, p. 106, 107.) that the feriae of the Jewish moneths, in years to which memorable events are disposed by Josephus, were according to that Historian in severall years the same which by his accompt. I have now summarily represented what is most solid and sincere in Scaligers arguments, for the Calippicall period used by the Jews in our Saviours time. He mis-applieth significa­tions, whereof [...] and [...] are capable.

In his chapter de anno Judaorum novitio (lib. 2. p. 121.) he intimateth how long he thought the Jews retain'd the Calippicall period, viz. till the vulgar yeare of Christ 344. qui erat Seleucidarum 656. & quadragesimus octavus post duas periodos Hipparcheas. Then (he saith) the Jews appre­hended their errour, viz. that the beginning of the yeare was protruded the space of two dayes (besides houres and scruples). He insinuateth that they then reformed their ac­compt. But we shall easily perceive, if we compare Scali­ger with himself, that his judgement was not clear in this particular. The Jews (saithProlegom. pag. 6. Scaliger) whilst they used the Calippicall period, in omnibus Neomeniis Lunae [...] observabant, non quod eam ex praescripto periodi non indicerent, sed ideò, ut eam sanctificarent. Nam & hodie [Page 146] quoque observant [...], non ut ex ea neomeniam indicant, sed ut eam sanctificent.

I cannot but observe that R. Adda contributeth little to the supporting of Scaligers opinion. Scaliger never saw any work of this Authour, onely learned from * R. Haie a Spaniard, his judgement concerning the solar yeare. Besides that, the Talmudists conceive that the Jews were no where bound to observe the phasis of the moon in order to the beginning of their moneths, but in the holy land; nor there longer then there remained a San­hedrin among them, it implieth no contradiction that those should expresse their opinions concerning solar years, who for the epochaes of the moneth attended to the phasis, and and whose civill years were not solar.

The Talmudists also witnesse, that the Jews by their inter­calations, provided that their feasts should return each of them about the same time of the solar year.

Scaliger acknowledgeth that 76 years, such as are defi­ned by R. Adda, were by a quadrante of a day, lesse then Calippus his period. R. Ada's last fraction might possibly intimate no more then that he described a yeare as part of a quadrant of Hipparchus his period. R. Ada seemeth rather to have suggested a new way of computation to the Jews, then to have reported what was their manner of accompt. His endeavour afterward took effect. [...] Hillel princeps Fili­us Juda Principis ordinavit computum secundum Te­kupham Rab. Ada, donec veniat Messias filius David. Fuit antem seculo Abai & Rabba. Atque ideo ità scripsit Rabbi Simeon Duran in expositione exhortationum: fuítque anno 670. contractuum. Thus Rabbi Abraham Zacuth in Sepher Juchasin, fol. 90.

[Page 147]Take notice also that R. Adda's yeare, if we may be­lieve R. Haie, differed a little from the yeare defined by Hipparchus.

Josephus his testimonies cited by Scaliger, at most one­ly perswade, do not prove what he thence concluded. Feasts might sometimes fall out on the same dayes of weeks or moneths, according to an uncertain, as according to a cyclicall accompt. He substracteth a yeare from 27. assign'd by Josephus to the space between Jerusalem taken by Pompey, and afterwards by Sosius. Perhaps should any conceive it operae pretium, he might find more instances dissonant, then Scaliger produceth as agreeable to his sup­posed Jewish cyclicall computation. But moreover any indifferent judge will readily give sentence, that Scaliger, unlesse he was resolv'd to dissemble his skill in history, di­vined that the Jews, before the destruction of Jerusalem us'd the Calyppicall period. I shall not need after Petavi­us, to explain what violence he offered to Josephus. Most certain it is that Scaligers invention much out-pas'd his judgement. He might by his skill in languages have much advanc'd the Literarie Republick, had he not more seri­ously affected to shew himself wittie, then judicious. His doctrine de emendatione temporum, is almost whol­ly fictitious, and founded upon the confines of no­thing.

What Scaliger alledgeth for the translation of Jewish feasts, may be pretermitted without detriment to the de­fence of his opinion. Petavius likewise here is easily victo­rious. Scaligers second book de emendat. Temp. is the seat of his discourse about this subject. But in hisPag. 642. seventh book he thus expresseth himself; Non omnis feria novilu­nii erit idonea ad KEVIA, unde in sequentem aut ter­tiam diem diffunditur: quod dicitur [...]. Quamobrem illae dies vocantur [...] Epiphanio, capite [...]. Epiphanius telleth us, in the place quoted by Scaliger, that the Jews in the yeare of our Saviours passion, [Page 148] [...]. He meantSee also Pe­titus, E [...]log. Chronol. l. 1. cap. 8. (if we may rely up­on Petavius his judgement) that some of the Jews (the Scribes and Pharisees) protruded the Passeover a day be­yond the time at which it ought to have been celebrated according to their accompt, because so it would beEpiphanius reporteth that the Jews cele­brated the Passeover be­fore the Ver­nall equinox. Aherravit E­piphanius qu [...]m longissimè à ver [...] vi [...] quan­do existimavit Christi aetate Judaeos usur­passe illam octa eteridem, qua nonnisi an­no Christi Dio­nysiano ducen­tesimo septimo instituta est & publicata cum [...]ype Tekupha­rum R. Samue­lis Jarchinai. Obtinuít (que) ad tempora Con­stantini Magni. Observat enim Constantinus in epistola ad Ecclesias, Judeos bi [...] in uno anno Pascha cele­brasse, quia nempe quarta­decima ante vertebat aequinoctium, à quo primus numerabatur anni mensis ex instituto non minùs Mosis & veterum Judaeorum quàm Nicaenorum Patruus, &c. Petit. Eclog Chron. lib. 1. cap. 14. [...] nearer the Equinox. He doth not intimate that they translated it, because the feria, upon which it fell according to their accompt, was [...]. I shall briefly produce others who side with Scaliger, before I relinquish this occasion of discourse.

Gerardus joannes Vossius (de tempore Dominicae passi­onis, num. 13.) after mention made of that opinion which referreth the distance between our Saviours [...], and the Passeover celebrated by the Jews the same year, to the Jews illegall translation of feasts, thus goeth on; Firmantur haec e Seder Olam, ubi legas exstructo templo secundo, à R. Eliezero, & aequalibus, esse constitutum, nè secundo, quarto, vel sexto die ageretur Pascha.

Vossius here attributeth to Seder Olam, what is not ex­stant in any book of that name. I find in Munsters Calen­darium Hebraicum (cap. de observatione primi mensis scilicet Tisri) and in his Comment upon Matthew 26. a sentence in Hebrew, containing the history touching the Jewish translations of feasts, which Vossius ascribes to Seder Olam. It is translated by Munster into this Latine, Sic statuerunt magistri nostri Sanhedrin, Magnates seculi; In domo Sanctuarii 2d•, cùm extructa & consummata es­set, apparuit cathedra ignea parata, & super eam Rex se­culi, majestate sublimis, stans scilicet inter porticum, & accipientes coronam, apprehendent ésque sigillum secretum, statuerunt & fecerunt ordinem seculi: traditúmque est in manum Rabbi Eliezer qui major omnibus caeteris fuit, & ordinavit [...] non fieri festum Sortis feria 2. 4. 7. neque [Page 149] Understand the 15. of Ni­san. Vossius in the tractate lately quoted, & some other late writers misapply it to the 14. Some Au­thours say Ni­san for Pesach. The Neome­nia of Nisan is never Bad [...]. Pascha feriâ 2. 4. 6. neque Pentecosten feria 3. 5. 7. neque caput anni feriâ 1. 4. 6. neque diem expiationis fe­ria 1. 3. 6. in aeternum.

Such translations of feasts likewise are approved in the Treatise de invent. Neomeniar. & Tecuph. (translated by Munster) and by R. Nachshon's Canones Festivitatum.

Maimon. in his Tractate intituled Kiddusch hachodesh, saith that the Jews fix not the Neomenia (viz. of Tisri) in (Adu) the 1. 4. or 6. feria, because their accompt is ac­commodated to the conjunctions of the sunne and moon, according to their middle motion. The same authour af­firmeth, that they had respect to the true motion of the moon, both before and for some time after the destruction of Jerusalem.

Philo lib. 3. de vita Mosis, saith of Moses, [...]. Primum mensem facit initium verni aequinoctii. If the first neomenia of the yeare were in a rigorous sense, the beginning of the equinox, the 15. of Nisan, whilst the vernall equinox was placed in the 25. of March, could not fall later then the 8. of April; which in part destroyes such an uncertain accompt as hath been attributed to the Jews. Moreover, the neomenia of Ni­san should be excepted from that accompt. But [...] cannot so well signifie both a moneth, and the new moon, as [...] in Hebrew, which is derived from [...] renovare. Again, if we admit that [...] hath both those significations, it's not necessary that Philo should intend the latter. He might perhaps mean in the sentence praised, that the first moneth of the Jewish civill yeare, according to some part or other indifferently in the beginning, or middle, or end of it, was quotannis [...]. Moreover, [...] (forasmuch as the inequality of day and night for some time after the Tecupha of Nisan was not sensible) and likewise [...], may admit of latitude,The Jews (as some affirm) in our Saviours age reputed the 25. of March the vernall equinox. Sed aequinoctium vernum medium, anno Ch [...]isti nati primo Dyonysiano (qui 10. erat cycli solaris) incepit Martii die 12. scr. 3. & Hierosolymis minut. 47. post horam septimam pomeridianam. so that th' one shall not [Page 150] necessarily be confined to the space of 24. houres, nor the other to the point which inchoateth that time.

Another sentence quoted out of Philo in the Treatise so oft mentioned, de anno civili veterum Judaeorum, c. 20. assureth us that Philo thought (as do the Talmudists and Karites) that the phasis was observed by the Jews, in or­der to the beginning of their civill moneth. The words are these; [...]. Neomeniâ inci­pit sol splendore sensibili lunam illustrare, ipsa verò propri­um decus tum patefacit spectantibus. The Neomenia here described had place if the Moon appeared ( [...]) in tem­pore suo.

What AnatoliusApud Euseb. Hist. Ecclesiast. lib. 7. cap. 32. testifieth concerning the Passe­over (viz. [...], &c. in primo anno (Pascha) novilunium primi mensis occupat: quod est circuli decennovennalis principium, &c.) seemeth to be in­consistent with the testimony of the Talmudists & Karites.

Galatinus (de Arcanis catholicae veritatis l. 4. c. 14.) speaking of the Hebrews, but to whom Nisan was the first moneth of the yeare (which he feigneth to be the same with our March) and consequently on this side the deli­very from Egypt, saith: Etsi menses lunares habeant, ter­tius tamen quisque annus apud eos tredecim menses sive lunationes habet, caeterorum verò unusquisque duodecim duntaxat continet menses. Ita ut per embolismos tempo­rum adaequationes ipsi facientes, per annos solares quem­admodum & nos, tempora metiantur. This Authour as he affirmeth without reason, may be dismissed without refu­tation.

Wolphius de Tempore lib. 1. c. 3. telleth us, but falsely, that the authour of Seder Olam reckoneth for the [...] of the moon 24. houres, and fixeth the Jewish Ne­omenia in the beginning of the nineteenth.

There's neither in Seder Olam Rabba, nor in Seder [Page 151] Olam Zuta any shadow of such a kabbala. He was de­ceived (I conjecture) by taking [...] Some have conceived that Munster com­piled the He­brew of that treatise; but in Epist. nun­cupator. be­fore his He­brew Calen­dar, he seem­eth to inti­mate that it had some o­ther authour. His words are these: Deinde ascripsimus Hebraicè & Latinè tracta­tum, qui apud Hebraeos de neomeni [...]s & aequinoctiis in­scribitur, &c. [...] liber de inventione neomeniarum & tecupha­rum, to be part of Seder Olam. Munster (in his Calen­darium Hebraicum) hath annexed this Treatise to Seder Olam Zuta, & R. Abraham Levita's Sepher Hakkabbala. I find in it (p. 88. according to the edition at Basil. Ann. 1527.) [...] Quemadmodum inquiunt capite primo, Rosch Hasshana, 24. horis luna absconditur, 18. vetus, & 6. nova. Scaliger (de Emend. temp. p. 636.) well conjectureth the occasion of this Canon. His words are these: Sed observandum, si novilunium atti­gerit horas 18. praecise, aut amplius, transferendam esse feriam. Caussa in promptu est, 18. horae Computi Judaici sunt 24. horae astronomicè, hoc est, à meridie. Nam pri­mum novilunium, uti diximus, De Computo Judaeorum no­vitio loquitur. Judaicè est Novilunium Tobu fer. 2. h. 5. scr. 204. hor. 5. 204. ab occasu solis, astronomicè, 11. 204. à meridie. Hoc ne doctiores quidem Judaei adverterunt: cujus rei ignoratio­ne illud oraculum sciverunt. [...] Viginti quatuor horis luna latet, id est, silet. Sex novella fit, & decem octo fit vetus.

The Authour of the book quoted, De inventione neo­meniarum & tecupharum, reckoneth (as I have said) for the [...] of the moon 24. houres, and the Neomenia in the beginning of the nineteenth. According to this au­thour the civill yeare used by the Israelites in Canaan, and their forefathers from the creation, consisted of 12. lu­nary moneths▪ but in the third or second, a full moneth was intercalated. In ordinary years (that is, such as wereTriplex est genus anni, or­dinaerius, cavus, sive defectivus, plenus, vel abundans. Horum quisque communis est, vel embolismaeus. Annum fecit abundantem [...] in Marchescbuan; deficientem [...] seu cavum, [...] in Cisteu. neither abundant nor deficient) the 1, 3. 5. 7. 9. 11. moneths were full; the rest hollow. An houre contained [Page 152] 1080. ( [...]) parts; a day 24. houres, and began à sexta hora post meridiem; a moneth d. 29. h. 12. scrup.Epilogismus Syzygiae Ju­daicae, dierum 29. horarū 12. moment. 793. quae quid [...]m 793. momenta sunt scrupula sexagenaria 44′. 3″. 20‴. At verus E­pilogismus a­stronomicus hor. 12. 44′. 3″. 11‴. Differentia, scrup, 0′. 0″. 9‴. quae quidem tertia in Syzygias unius cycli solidi ducta fiunt scrup. 0′. 35″. 15‴. Scalig. de Emendat. temp. pag. 640. 793. a yeare which had neither moneth nor day inserted, d. 354. h. 8. scrup. 876. For the extent of this moneth he appealeth to R. Simeon, the sonne of Gamaliel. [...] Dixit princeps Abarbinel (in Parasch. [...]) attributeth to Gamaliel what here is given to Simeon, deriveth from him this kabbala. Simeon filius Ga­malielis: Sic accepi à domo patris patris mei, quod non renovatur Luna spatio minori 29. diebus, & dimidio & duabus horae partibus, & 73. chelakim.

The Solar yeare exceedeth the common ordinary Lunar yeare by d. 10. h. 21. scrup. 204. had 365. dayes, 6. houres. That the motions of the sunne and moon might be re­concil'd, seven years in the enneadecaeteris (or cycle of 19. years) were embolismaei, viz. the 3. 6. 8. 11. 14. 17. 19.

For the combination of moneths to be intercalated he quoteth R. Gamaliel in the Talmudicall Tractate; Con­cerning the beginning of the yeare, [...] Et tradiderunt in Massecheth de principio ani annos embolismaeos: inquit, R. Gama­liel: tres, tres, duo, tres, tres, duo. The authour of the book de Neomeniis & Tecuphis (now quoted,) ob­serveth, that at the end of the cycle there remained 1. houre, 485. chelakim of the excesse of solar years. In years which have a moneth inserted, Adar is doubled: The first hath 30. the other 29. dayes.

I cannot but take occasion here to correct an errour, which hath been propagated by this authour. He con­cludeth that no moneth but the last could be doubled in anno embolismaeo without violation of the Scripture; [Page 153] because the moneths there have their order assigned them, (he maketh particular mention of Adar, viz. it is said to be the twelfth moneth) yet acknowledgeth that the first Adar is the moneth intercalated. The last Adar hath been mistaken by some late Writers for the moneth intercalated. Neither may I omit that the Authour praised is inconsistent with himself, as in severall places defining the extent of the intercalated moneth to be 29. dayes, 12. houres, 795. scru­ples, (which is the quantity of common moneths) yet els­where making it 30. dayes. This perplexity is not peculi­ar to this authour. It's agreed that the intercalated Adar had 30. dayes, yet 29. dayes and 12. houres substracted se­ven times from the excesse of the Solar enneadecaeteris compared with the Lunar, leaveth but one houre and 485. scruples. What more was requisite to the filling up of 7. intercalated moneths, was subducted (I conjecture) from the houres and parts of houres by which lunary years ex­ceeded 354. dayes.

The 12. houres of each lunary moneth above 29. dayes, multiplied by 12. make 6. dayes, which are disposed of each yeareThe 30. day of a full mo­neth is [...]. The be­ginning of an hollow mo­neth hath two dayes, the 30. of the moneth preceding, and the day fol­lowing. Abar­binel upon Ex­od. 12. saith of the moneth mentioned 1. Sam. 20.17. [...] fuerunt in illo men­se dies bini capitis mensis secundùm consuetudinem nostram (id est, hodiernam.) I cannot doubt, comparing this sentence with Jonathan Ben Uziels paraphrase, and R. Isaiah's marginal Comment upon the 1. Sam. 20.27. but that Abarbinels two dayes of the Be­ginning of the moneth, were the last of a full moneth, and the first of an hollow moneth. in 6. full moneths. The scruples of a moneth besides complete dayes and houres, viz. 793. multiplied by 12. make 9516. that is, 8. houres, 876. scruples. Some tell us that dayes were intercalated severally in second moneths of years, viz. Marcheschvans, accordingly as 8. houres, 876. scruples, by which ordinary lunar years exceed each of them 354. dayes, to be digested into severall years, requi­red. But part of them, (as I said) seem to have completed intercalated moneths. According to the authour before quoted, Marcheschvan, which is naturally an hollow moneth, is sometimes made full, and Cisleu which is natu­rally [Page 154] a full moneth, is sometimes made hollow, by reason of translation of feasts.

What some other writers deliver about the Epocha of the Jewish moneth, by it self much perplexed, is extrica­ted from difficulty by what I have produced out of the book de Neomeniis & Tecuphis. Among severall He­brew and Latine authours, who expresse themselves in this point alike, I shall make choice of Abarbinel for an in­stance, but shall explain likewise what he thought concern­ing times before the Exodus.

He affirmeth (in Parasch. [...]) that each na­tion before the Exodus determined the beginnings of their moneths by computation, not by the phasis.

2. That the Israelites and their forefathers before the Exodus, used the civil moneths and years of the nations amongst whom they conversed.

3. That God on mount Sinai determined, what mo­neths, and years, and neomenia's the Israelites should af­terward observe.

4. He seemeth to conceive that neither they, nor any nation had exactly the same in any times preceding.

5. That the Israelites were determined to a set compu­tation of dayes, and houres, and scruples, according to which they ordered their moneths, and years, but yet that the phasis was not neglected. [...] Non dubium est, quin tunc temporis monstrata fuerit Mosi via sanctificationis neomenia ad phasin, & via sanctificationis ejus secundùm rationem computi, & regulae ad deducendum illam ex iis, quia lex nostra ligata est in traditione Mosis è Sinai. The houre or time which he pointeth at in these words ( [...]) was that in which God first commanded that Nisan should be the beginning of moneths. So much is clear from what immediately precedeth; but also toward [Page 155] the end of his Comment upon Exodus 12.2. he affirmeth that the accompt to be used by the Israelites, was delivered to Moses by word of mouth, that he might transmit it to the great Sanhedrin, and that it began to be observed in Egypt. It's manifest he thought the same accompt was a­gain injoyned on mount Sinai. Five moneths (saith he) are perpetually full (each of them of 30. dayes,) five per­petually hollow (each of them of 29. dayes) and two moneths, viz. Marcheschvan and Cisleu sometimes have each of them 30. dayes, sometimes each of them but 29. dayes. He affirmeth that the neomenia (or beginning of the moneth) was fastened by computation from the dayes of Moses to Antigonus; and that Antigonus his two scho­lars Sadoc and Baitus (ring-leaders to the sect of the Sad­duces, whom that faction of the Jews, which are now cal­led Karites, succeed in most of their opinions) first taught that the beginning of the moneth ought to be ratified by the phasis. [...] Et coguntur sapientes (istius) seculi retractare verba sua. What I have quoted, intimateth that Sadoc and Baitus prevail, that the phasis should be generally received for the epocha of the civil yeare.

R. Gamaliel (he saith) had shapes of moons upon his wall, in order to the instruction of his scholars, and the sectatours of Sadoc and Baitus. The times of Jewish festivalls (according to the same authour) were determi­ned by by the Sanhedrin; but according to computation, not according to the phasis. Whereas the appearance of the moon is obvious to the sense of any private persons, he conceiveth this office of defining the time of the neo­menia, and the ordering of the yeare, to have been so my­sterious, that avide p. 39. schechina was necessary for the direction of the judges. He insinuateth that the Karites violate that precept which forbiddeth to adde any thing to the Law. They begin their moneths, [...] nixi traditione (hominis) pri­vati, vel pri­vatorum. according to some private tra­dition, by the phasis (I represent Abarbinels sense) with­out [Page 156] warrant from the written or traditionall Law, and di­metrally against a Kabbala which Moses received on mount Sinai. He condemneth their other customes about the ordering of their moneths or years; that they sanctifie the neomenia when there is no phasis, that when the moon appeareth not for foure moneths together,According to Eliah Ben Mosch, the Karites grant that foure full moneths may be continuous. they make three of them full, and one hollow, that they admit not of any other reasons of moneths to be intercalated, besides that Nisan may fall in Abib.

What I have quoted out of Abarbinel, assureth us that he believed not that the phasis was the beginning of the Hebrew civill moneth, unlesse accidentally, to wit, as it happened in that time which began the civill moneth ac­cording to computation. I shall now extricate his doctrine from a grand difficulty, which unlesse it meet with candide interpreters, will be construed into a contradiction.

The question is this: How can [...] consist with [...]? How can the neomenia be sanctified both by the phasis, and by com­putation in the same civill accompt?

Answ. The word kiddusch in the sentence quoted out of Abarbinel, hath two significations. As it hath respect to [...] the Phasis, it importethJudei hodi­erni lunâ sta­tim visâ adhi­hibent hanc benedictionis formulam: [...]. Idem faciunt & Muhammedani, quamvìs neomenias ex scripto indicere soleant. [...] benediction; but as it's related to [...] [...] est praeparare & [...] sixio neomeniae quaedam mensis est praepara­tio: sed & kiddusch, quòd benedictio, seu consecratio, cum sanctione & initiatione non rarò conjuncta sit, transitu facili & hanc & illam scorsum denotat. is the same that [...] sanction. In [...] Adam blessed the moon when he first saw it; but the moneth began six houres sooner. The determination of the Neomenia to this or that time (called [...]) by Abarbinel is referred to computation: but he seemeth to have thought that the moneth was consecrated at the Phasis, if the moon appea­red in due time.

[Page 157]The knot may be otherwise loosed, perhaps more agree­ably to Abarbinel's mind. He might by Kiddusch Hacho­desch nghal pi [...] hareijah, mean onely that the epocha of their civill moneth was so ordered by computation, that it was wont to fall out at, or near the time of the Phasis. He saith that in Sauls time, [...] Those who hold that the Jewish moneth anciently began with the 19. houre after a conjunction, sometimes say that it began at the Phasis, meaning that it began much nearer to the Phasis, then to the conjunction.

I shall now explain how these authours may be recon­ciled to themselves, who make the Hebrew moneths of the same quantity with Synodicall, yet affirm that in com­mon ordinary years (that is, such as were neither embo­lismaei, nor abundantes, nor deficientes) they were alter­natively full and hollow. They speak of the Hebrew moneths according to a double acception; viz. as they im­port distances which the Hebrews conceived equall with those of conjunctions next one another; or as they denote moneths founded in such as were for their quantitie the same with synodicall. This sort may properly, and the first sort tropically, according to the opinions of the same au­thours, be said to have been the ancient Hebrew moneths. The first kind of moneths are the adequate matter of the other, which were alternatively full and hollow, from the aera of such accompt.

The Hebrews (as the same authours conceive) endea­voured that their civill moneths and years should main­tain correspondency between the motions of the sunne and moon. The [...] secretum computi (for [...] in­tercalatio, here by a Synechdoche is the same that [...] computum) which the Hebrew Doctours so much menti­on, especially aim'd at this mark. 'Twas requisite that they took notice of the motions of each luminary, that [Page 158] they might fitly digest them into their civill moneths and years.

Epiphanius in his 51. Heresie (intituled [...]) re­porteth that the Jews in our Saviours time used a double cycle, a lesser of 14. years, a greater of 85. years. Simple years, that is, such as had nothing intercalated, contained each of them 354. dayes, and foure houres, such as were 1/3. of the [...]. In each Tessaradecaeteris five moneths were intercalated.

The greater cycle according to the Chetib in Epiphani­us, contained 85 years. One moneth, (besides the five of each lesser cycle) was intercalated in the 85. yeare. Their civil years ought to reconcile the motions of the sunne and moon, as farre as they conceived it possible, within the compasse of the greater cycle. Some perhaps attending that Cyrill maketh mention of a cycle of 84 years used by some Christians, or regarding the proportion between 84 and 14 (the number of years in Epiphanius his lesser cycle) which is exactly sextuple, have derogated a yeare from Epiphanius his greater Jewish cycle. The Jews (saith Epiphanius) in 85 years intercalated 31 moneths,Petitus thus readeth the end of Epi­phanius his paragraph touching the Jewish cycles. [...]. eleven houres here are 11/12. of a day. Their intercalations, according to Epiphanius, in their greater cycle exceeded a due measure by the space of two dayes and two houres. The Neomenia of Nisan in the 86th. yeare, was protruded two dayes by the default of their cycle. But the 27 dayes and 22 houres might be compleated into a moneth, by the excesse of Lunary years above 354. dayes, 8. houres. The measure of the Lunar yeare according to our Hebrew Do­ctours is 354. dayes, 8. houres, 876. scruples. Those who had the managing of the Jewish accompt, might conceal from the vulgar the 876 scruples which were to 354. dayes, 8. houres, the complement in the lunar yeare, yet oppor­tunely intercalate them.

Epiphanius (in Haeres. Audianorum) attributeth to [Page 159] the Jews beyond the destruction of Jerusalem, a cycle of eight years.

Africanus in Hierome (upon Dan. 9.) and in Eusebius, Demonstrat. Evangel. lib. 8. assigneth to the Jews for the same times, a cycle containing the same number of years.

To explain the measure of years exhibited by Africanus, or Epiphanius, will nothing promove my purpose.

There's much controversie (as I have shewed) about the accompt which was used by the Israelites, between the Exodus and the destruction of Jerusalem.

The Talmudists uncertain accompt is exhibited in R. Je­huda's [...], but how long, and when it was used, are not there expressed. These circumstances are determi­ned by Maimon. in the Tractate Kiddusch Hachodesch. The place is noted bySee Scalig. in Canon. Isa­gog. l. 3. c. 6. Petavius de doctrina temp. lib. 2. & in E­piphan. ad Haeres. Alogor. Samuel. Petit. Eclog. Chrono­log. l. 1. c. 3. & 8. Petavius, and others who have been conversant in this subject. Maimonies suffrage for the uncertain accompt, addeth (I confesse) nothing to the au­thority of the Talmud, if his information was from thence wholly propagated to him. Scaliger believeth that the pha­sis, as oft as it was had when it was expected, was the epo­cha of the jewish moneth, from the Exodus till the aera con­tractuum.

Abarbinels opinion (as it's clear from what I cited out of him) is almost diametrally opposite. Some Hebrew writers hold, that the Israelites used a cyclicall accompt (the same which they now use, or one a little differing) throughout the whole time which they inhabited the holy land.

Tractat. de variis annorum formis cap. 16.Lydiat objecteth against Epiphanius, his falsification about the Romane Consuls, and that in Haeres. 70. (viz. Audianorum) he speaketh of the Paschall cycle of Chri­stians, as if generally it had been Octaeteris. Epiphanius might farre more venially attribute any cycles to the Jews who lived in our Saviours time, which were forged by some private person, and never publickly used by that nation.

[Page 160]I may adde, that Epiphanius might perhaps pronounce of the Jews who lived before the destruction of Jerusalem,Vide Samu­el. Petitum Eglog. Chronol. lib. 1. cap. 14. Lydyat Tract. de variis an­norum formis, cap. 16. by the practises of some of that nation in the present age. He lived after Hillels edition of the Jewish accompt. Hil­lels accompt if the houres and scruples by which Lunar years exceed 354. dayes, wont to be inserted before they exceeded a day, in some intercalated moneth, or in Mar­cheshvan, be reserved (part of a day excepted, which might be disposed of before or after the moneth intercala­ted in the end of 85. years) till they become a moneth, differeth onely in some inconsiderable circumstances from that of Epiphanius. The Jewish accompt explain'd by Munster in his Calendarium Hebraicum, and by Scaliger de emendat. Temp. lib. 7. is Hillels. Scaliger (de emend. temp. lib. 2.) is angry with those who make it as ancient as the Creation. There's frequent mention of this accompt in the Hebrew Doctours. Some seem to believe that it be­gan in Paradise: others are misconstrued into the same er­rour by late writers. R. Abraham Zacuth informeth us, that Hillel composed it. Former ages made way for it. Hillel (as the same authour witnesseth) ordinavit compu­tum secundam tecupham Rabbi Adae: And Ada imitated Samuel Jarchinai, (and [...] Hipparchus ille Astrologus summus celeberrimus speculatus est Epilogismos antiquos ab annis propemodum quadringentis super defecti­bus lunae: terminavit (que) horas, scrupula, momenta, & minutias: adeò ut summa rationum ejus conve­niens sit rationibus doctorum nostrorū felicis memoria in modo mensis Lunaris, qui est 29. 12. 793. Some of the Jews ancienter then Jarchinai, approved this measure of the Lu­nar moneth. Jarchinai probably some more ancient.) They differed not considerably from one another. [...] [Page 161] [...] Horam & quadraginta octoginta quinque scrupula ex­currentia in omni cyclo è sententia Samuelis, ut constat omnibus autoribus computi, is Rab. Adda illam horam, & quadraginta octoginta quinque scrupula distribuit per scientiam fractionis Arithmeticae in omnes septuaginta sex tecuphas, quae sunt in cyclo; adeò ut unumquodque scrupu­lum diviserit in septuaginta sex scrupula secunda, quae vocavit momenta, & singulis cycli tecuphis competunt viginti scrupula, momenta quadraginta quinque. [...] secundum rationes Rab. Adda desinunt anni solis cum aennis lunae in singulis cyclis aequatione absoluta, sine accessione aut decessione, vel unius momenti.

The years in which seven moneths within each lunar cycle were intercalated, were according to R. Adda the 2. 5. 7. 10. 13. 15. 18. The accompt which the Jews now use, was attributed to R. Hillel, because he altered R. Ad­da's astronomicall computation in some circumstances.

Hillel endeavoured to reconcile R. Jaichinai and R. Adda,See Scalig. in Canon. Isa­gog. lib. 3. c. 6. Petit. Eclog. Chronol. l. 1. c. 15. & 16. The Jews, before it was decreed by their great Se­nate, that R. Hillels accompt should be generally used un­till the dayes of the Messias, some of them computed their affairs by R. Sam. Jarchina's astronomicall accompt,See Scalig. in Canon. Isa­gog. lib. 3. c. 6. Petit. Eclog. Chronol. l. 1. c. 15. & 16. others by R. Adda's: some retained the uncertain accompt used before the destruction of Jerusalem. R. Hillel went in the middle way between Jarchinai and Adda, yet was not able to reduce the Jews to uniformity.

Jose Ben Chilpetha in Seder Olam Rabba, Nachman in Bereshith Rabba, and Jarchi upon the history of the de­luge, affirm that moneths in the Primitive world were one full, another hollow. Each of these quoteth R. Eliezer for [Page 162] his opinion. R. Jose, and Rabba Bar Nachman were an­cienter then Hillel, the Founder of that accompt which the Jews now use. Hillel (in that place of Juchasin which I before quoted) [...] fuit anno 670. contractuum. Hic annus (saith Scaliger) erat 358. Christi, annis 14. post ordinationem, quae incidit in annum So we must reade him. 354. is [...] typographi­cum. 344. We can easily believe that the authour of Bereshith Rabba, &c. was ancienter then Hillel, though they were for some time contemporary; and that Nachman had writ­ten at least Bereshith Rabba before the publishing of Hil­lels cycle. R. Abraham Zacuth affirmeth that Hillel lived in the time of Abhai and Rabba. Rabba is Bar Nachman, and Abhai one who was educated by him, and adopted his sonne. R. Bar Nachman (according to Buxtorf and Al­stede) flourished about the yeare of Christ 300. R. Jose and Nachmanides, &c. sith there's no ground for their opi­nion in sacred Scriptures seem to have attributed to the times before the exodus, such civill moneths, and such a form of years, as themselves esteemed most absolute; or else to have thought some astronomicall accompt approved in later times to have been propagated from the civill use of times most ancient. It's probable enough that some later writers, whether Jews or of any other nation, might understand what maximes were delivered by authours more ancient touching the Hebrews astronomicall or civill accompt of present ages, to be spoken of the civill accompt of ages preceding. Any one perceiveth that the Astro­nomicall accompt, whether publick or private might as easily be mistaken for the Civill of the same age.

Besides that there's no vestigium in Rosch Hasscha­nah of that conceit concerning the beginning of the 19. houre after a conjunction, nor yet of the Canon touching the number of moneths intercalated in the cycle of 19 years, it's obvious to perceive from what hath been spoken, that the same might be propagated from authours of undeniable credit, and ancienter then [Page 163] R. Jehudah, who compiled the Mischna, yet not inferre that the Phasis was not the Epocha of the Jews civill moneth.

That I may further explain what I have spoken touch­ing the occasions of false opinions about the ancient Jew­ish yeare, I shall adde somewhat concerning severall ac­compts coexsistent.

Eclog. Chro­nol. l. 1. c. 4. & 14.Petitus affirmeth that the Jews had besides their ac­compt by the Phasis, a cycle of 8. years, such an one as suffered not the Passeover to prevent the Equinox, which they retained till the 207. yeare of the Christian Aera; that then an Octaeteris of a new stamp succeeded, which could not so well tueri fines anni. Epiphanius (he saith) was de­ceived, as suppossing the latter cycle to be the same which was observed in the yeare of Christs passion. Epiphanius besides the double cycle which be attributeth to the Jews in his 51. Heresie, maketh mention of an Octaeteris in the Heresie of the Audians, according to which the Passeover sometimes happened twice within the compasse of a yeare, that is, no vernall equinox interceding. That the Jews er­red this errour about the time of the Nicene Council, is witnessed in an epistleApud Theod. Hist. Eccles. lib. 1. c. 10. written by Constantine to the Bi­shops who were absent from the Assembly at Nice. [...]. This place and that in Epiphanius (Hares. 70.) were not happily inter­preted by Scaliger, who taketh occasion hence to conjecture that the Jews when their plenilunium Paschale came be­fore the vernall intersection, kept two Passeovers in two moneths which were continuous, viz. one in the first, an­other in the second moneth.

According to Epiphanius, our Saviours last Passeover fell into the last yeare, (to wit, the 85.) of the Jews great­er cycle. And he with the vulgar Jews, kept the Passeover according to the cycle of 8. years; but the Scribes and Pha­risees [Page 164] who were ( [...]) according to their og doe contapentaeteris, in which they intercalated two dayes supra rationes lunares. The more mysterious ac­compt was not imparted to the common people. the Scribes and Pharisees also added to the two dayes mentio­ned [...].

I cannot consent to Epiphanius, that in times so ancient the feast of the Passeover anteverted the vernall equinox. That according to the doctrine of the Karites, it was pro­vided by intercalations that the Passeover should fall in Abib, is confirmed by Eliah Ben Moseh, andUpon [...] Abarbinel. [...] (Euseb. hist. Eccles. l. 7. c. 32.) sunt etiam quaedam velut regulae ac praeceptiones in libro qui inscribitur Enoch, quae declarant primum mensem a­pud Hebraeos circiter aequinoctium esse. The Talmudists deny that the equinox was later then the 15. of Nisan. Josephus affirmeth (Archaeolog. Judaicae lib. 3. cap. 10.) that on the 14. of Nisan the sunne was in Aries. The A­gathobuli, instructers of Aristobulus, one of the Septua­gint (in Anatolius praysed byHist. Eccles. l. 7. c. 32. Eusebius) transmitted to posterity this Canon, [...].

To these adde Aristobulus and Anatolius. According to these witnesses, the sacrificing of the Passeover, or 14. of Nisan was not regularly sooner then the vernall equinox. Many learned Authours have concluded (but by what Lo­gick I cannot divine) from that place in Josephus and this in Eusebius now cited, that the 14. of Nisan ought to fall upon the vernall [...]. Had I the faculty of won­dring. I might here take occasion to exercise it. [...], is the summe of those authorities. [...] in Aristobulus his testi­mony is [...], 1/12 of the Zodiack, viz. Aries or Li­bra. By the suffrages of this authour and Josephus, the Passeover was celebrated whilest the sunne was in Aries. [Page 165] Anatolius affirmeth that in the first yeare of the enneade­caeteris, the Passeover was celebrated on the first day of the first moneth. Perhaps he conceiv'd that to be the [...] which had day and night equall. If so, yet his ex­pression implyeth that the Passeover might fall out other­wise in other years of the cycle. As the testimonies pro­duc'd by Anatolius, limit not the immolation of the Passe­over to that [...] in the Spring, which had day and night equall, so neither do they exclude it thence. [...] may be interpreted by [...]. They seem to mean that the sunne was in Aries at the immolati­on of the Passeover. The intention of the Passeover is re­sembled by the time, at which it was observed.

Exod. 12.18. Levit. 23.5. Numb. 28.17.Some texts of sacred Scripture in which it is said, On the fourteenth day of the first moneth at even, is the Lords Passeover, were perhaps to Josephus, the Agathobuli, A­ristobulus, &c. an occasion of attributing to the 14. of Nisan, what the Talmudists say of the 15. viz. that it cannot be sooner then the vernall [...].In Haeres. Audianorum, seu 70. Epiphanius himself informeth us, that the Christians in the Primitive times judg'd that the Passeover ought not to be kept before the equinox. They conceiv'd that the equinoctiall was ( [...], seu [...]) by divine appointment the partition of years. They supposed that the Passeover ought to be ce­lebrated in the first moneth. But moreover their reason doth not conclude those who are southern to the equator. If the entrance of the sunne into Aries, be the naturall be­ginning of the yeare to us, then the entrance of the sunne into Libra to them.

Petavius in severall parts of his works expresseth him­self to be of opinion, that the Jews whilst they inhabited their own countrey, regarded a cyclicall accompt; yet ap­proveth Maimonides his doctrine touching the uncertainty of the Jewish civill moneths. The Synedrium (as Maimo­nides teacheth us in his Jad Chazaka, in the Tractate Kid­dusch Hachodesch) if there came no witnesses of the Pha­sis [Page 166] on the 30. day, (reckoned from the last neomenia,) by intercalating a day made the moneth full, or of 30. dayes, and decreed that the 31. day should be the epocha of the next moneth; but if after foure or five dayes, or at the end of the moneth (Nisan and Tisri being excepted) it were confirm'd to them by sufficient testimonies, that the moon had been seen at her time (viz. on the 30. night) they be­gan to reckon the 30. day the beginning of the moneth. Petavius upon Epiphan. (ad haeres. Alogor. p. 183. & 186.) imputeth the Scribes and Pharisees celebration of the Passeover after our Saviour's with his disciples, to the Se­nates ill managing of their uncertain accompt. What Pe­tavius seemeth to suspect in particular, viz. that the mo­neth was new moulded, the epocha being cast backward to the 30. day, [...] quia venerunt testes longinqui, ac se lu­nam suo tempore prospexisse confirmaverunt; should rather (as we easily discern) have occasioned the Sanhedrins, ob­serving of the Passeover before our Saviour, then (what he conceiveth) vice versâ. He supposeth that our Savi­our judged it more convenient, that the epocha of the mo­neth, though for want of information it was unduly fixed, should be rata & grata, rather then the erratum should cause a new edition of the moneth.

Petitus conceiveth, that the Jews before the Halosis of jerusalem had a cycle of eight years, and in the same times their accompt according to the phasis. The Talmud and Maimonides represent them so well skill'd in Astronomy, that they could disprove false witnesses of the phasis, who fail'd in circumstances, the positure and figure of the moon, and likewise by intercalations accommodate their uncer­tain moneths to the motions of the sunne and moon.

What Petitus (occasioned by Epiphanius his [...] in the yeare of our Saviours Passion) quoteth out of the third chapter of that famous Tractate in Maimon. his Jad, Kiddusch Hachodesch, suggesteth an accompt of the [Page 167] difference between Christ and the Pharisees about the time of the Passeover, much to be preferr'd before that given by Petavius. The words are these: [...] The sense of the place is sufficiently expressed by Petitus in these words, Non defuerunt tamenè veteribus Magistris, qui docerent, si opus esset mense dierum triginta, judicum consessum, quamvis testes dicerent se vidisse primam lunae visionem nocte tricesima, non tamen retexuisse mensem, neque Neomeniam statuisse eo die tricesimo, qui interca­latus fuerat. Some of the Hebrew Doctours affirm, that the great Consistory, although they were certified that the moon was seen on the 30 day, sometimes for necessary rea­sons permitted the Calends of the moneth to remain as be­fore their information. It's not improbable that by such a method they should provide that the Passeover prevented not the equinox. Gerardus Joannes Vossius (in his Trea­tise De Tempore Dominicae Passionis, so oft cited) think­eth that our Saviour approv'd not this reason of a day to be embolis'd. Abarbinel (in his Comments upon Exod. 12.2. so oft quoted) telleth us. That the embolisations of years, & sanctions of the beginnings of moneths, are prero­gative to the great Senate, and that what they do, is accor­ding to the Law, and what the Law saith, Deut. 12.32. Thou shalt not adde thereto, nor diminish from it, is not spoken but as be­fore the vulgar, that they innovate not above their under­standing, nor exalt their wisdome above their skill in the precept, as do the Karites; but that we should hearken to the Prophets, and Priests, and Judges, as who are help'd by a Schechina. [...] [Page 168] [...]

The sentence meriteth to be made publick. The School­men say; God can dispence with the materiality of any precept in the Decalogue, the three first excepted.

The Israelites understood by the Prophet Moses, that God had sign'd them a dispensation for the spoyling of the Egyptians. God by his Prophets and Apostles added other sacred Scriptures to the Pentateuch. These were enabled by a Schechina. The high Priests gave answers by Urim and Thummim. I cannot doubt but God oft by a Sche­china taught the Senatours judgement. But neither can I believe that divine assistance and infallibility were entayl­ed upon the Sanhedrin. We are sufficiently inform'd that it was otherwise in our Saviours time. It's credible enough that our Saviour, if the moon appear'd at her time, and the time of her appearance ought to be counted the begin­ning of the moneth, would give notice of the Phasis. The Sanhedrin perhaps neare the time of our Saviours passion, might refuse due testimonies of the moon's appearance on the 30. day; or else judge it necessary that a day should be inserted.

Lastly, the Karites (as Abarbinel witnesseth) have a cycle of 19. years, to which by embolismes they conform their uncertain accompt.

I may here opportunely give notice, that Maimon. in his interpretation of the first Perech of Rosch Hasschana in part excepteth Elul and Tisri from the rules of their un­certain accompt. [...]

Thus the Mischna of Rosch Hasschana. Messengers were sent out from Jerusalem (the seat of the great Senate) [Page 169] to give notice of the neomenia of Elul to those who were distant, that they might observe the beginning of the yeare at due time. Maimonides commenteth upon this part of the text in these words: [...] Et dixerunt, propter Elul ratione principii anni, quia Elul secundum multitudinem viginti & novem dierum; & unde cognoverunt initium mensis Elul, inde cognoverunt initium anni in numero (seu computo) annorum. The modus of the moneth Elul was certain, (viz. 29. dayes) and consequently determined the beginning of the moneth following.

It may be objected that messengers were sent to give no­tice of the neomenia of Tisri, that the solemnities of that moneth might be observed in their due times, Maimonie's comment upon the Talmudicall tradition, will extricate us from the difficulty. [...] Et egrediuntur propter Tisri, ut notum faciant initium anni verum, quia fieri non potest Elul triginta dierum. The beginning of the yeare (as we see) was twofold; one ( [...]) in computo annorum; another ( [...]) in veritate. The 30. day from the Neomenia of Elul, if the moon then appeared, was the beginning of the yeare, both berobh hasschanim, and beemeth: otherwise onely berobh hasschanim, and the next beemeth. When these beginnings of the yeare fell on severall dayes, the feasts in Tisri (the Rosch hasschana it self must needs be excepted) were reckoned from the later, which was in truth the be­ginning of that moneth, not from the other which was the first of Tisri by dispensation, in regard of the Jews distant from Jerusalem. It was provided by this dispensation, that the beginning of the yeare might be celebrated by all the Jews on the same day. We see that Messengers were requi­site for the ordering of the festivalls in Tisri, besides those [Page 170] who gave notice of the neomenia of Elul. It's clear from what hath been said, that one and thirty dayes might pos­sibly intercede between Elul and Marcheschvan, to wit, when the Phasis was neither the Epocha of Tisri nor of Marcheschvan.

If such an uncertain computation as hath been spoken of, obtained for any segment of time, we cannot by know­ing the number of Jewish years, comprehend the distance of events between which it interceded. Scaliger, though he affirms that the Jews used the Syro-Macedonian moneths and years, after the Seleucidae had power over them, till the 344. yeare at least of the Christian Aera (and so contradi­cteth Maimonie before quoted);De emend. Temp. lib. 2. pag. 105. denieth not but that in times more ancient, Epocha's of moneths, were perhaps such as are exhibited in the Talmud, and in Maimonides.

Such an accompt should derogate much lesse from the certainty of Chronology, were it confin'd to the times on this side the Nabonassarean epocha, (which according to Ptolemy, preceded the death of Alexander the great, 4 [...]4. years, Augustus Cesar, 719.) then if it be cast backward into ages nearer the creation. Ptolemies history of Astro­nomicall observations compar'd with the times of events upon earth, and the histories written by Diodorus and Jo­sephus, (and downward from Gyges king of the Lydians) Herodotus, Thucidides, and Xenophon, inform us better in order to the applying of some things which came to passe between the beginning of the reigne of Nabonassar & our Saviours nativity, mentioned in authentick or Ecclesiasti­call scriptures, to years, moneths, and dayes in periodicall accompts, then do any humane writers about times pre­ceding.

I may here seasonably take occasion to demonstrate▪ that knowledge of the positures of the starres at any distance backward from the present instant, together with the histo­ry of Astronomicall observations, cannot enable us to as­signe to all remarkable events, their distances from the time [Page 171] present, or from the creation. Scarce any events mention­ed in Scripture above Nabonassar's Epocha, are characte­riz'd in ancient writers by perfect conjunctions, or any a­spects of any starres, or by the observation of either of the equinoxes, or solstices, or by eclipses. The [...] attri­buted to times nearer the present age, are reported to us some of them (that I may not suspect the skill or credit of those who professe themselves to have observed any of them) by those onely who by many centuries succeeded the events to which they are applyed, and to whom they were perhaps transmitted onely by unwritten traditions.

Moreover, sit [...] remarkable accidents are by ancient hi­storians, whether sacred or humane, almost wholly refer­red to civil years, moneths, and dayes (few of them, if any, apprehended the true measure of the solar yeare) we can­not measure their distances from the creation, or from any time downward, unlesse civill times interceding be known to us, as well as the motions of celestiall bodies, and events or parts of civill times thereby characteriz'd.

Were we sure that any event fell out, when the sunne or when the moon was eclipsed, we might probably discover a false distance assigned it from the time present, or if the space of time on this side the event be certain, from any time beyond it, but cannot by mere skill in the circumvolutions of the starres attain to so much as a probability of the truth. Our discovery of a false distance given (as I said) is but probable. It's possible that the whole space between two eclipses of either of the Luminaries may be un­duly added, or substracted; likewise that a time may be assigned to the eclipse and to the event thereby characte­riz'd, in which an eclipse was possible, but not necessary.

That I may return whence I have digressed, Scaliger changeth his note, Canon. Isagog. lib. 3. cap. 6. Et certè ma­jor pars priscorum Judaeorum (in ea sententia est, quòd [...] sanctificabant neomeniam se­cundum visionem; & testibus jurantibus se vidisse lunam [Page 172] corniculatam, statim judices clamabant ( [...]) sanctificata est, sanctificata est (neomenia). Sanctificare (neomeniam) is here with Scaliger the same that sancire, as it's clear from what followeth.

Saul and Jonathan and David (1. Sam. 20.) knew that the next day should be the new moon, yet could not divine that the moon should appear in the night following. Their knowledge might be merely conjecturall; or they might be certain that the morrow should be the new moon, be­cause their expectation of the phasis was frustrated in the night preceding.

My purpose is satisfied, if (as Abarbinel seemeth to ac­knowledge) the sanction of the Neomenia by the Phasis began to be used publickly in the times of Sadoc and Bai­tus. But moreover, those authours who affirm that the Jews alwayes used a cyclicall accompt, are so many, and so much differ in their opinions, that although the uncertain accompt testified by the Talmudists and Karites, was quite expunged, we should remain doubtfull about sacred Chonology.

I cannot believe that the phasis of the moon was, as the Karites affirm, the epocha of the moneth in the age of the floud; nor with Eliah Ben Moseh one of that sect, that Ni­san was then the first of moneths; nor yet that the measure of years mentioned in Genesis, is sufficiently known to us. Honore, existimatione, authoritate, utì & vetustate Tal­mudicos Karitis nunquam non praecelluisse satis est rece­ptum. Thus M. Selden in his Preface to his Treatise de anno Civili veterum Judaeorum. The Talmudists extend not their uncertain accompt into times beyond the Law given on Sinai. Eliah ben Moseh (the manuscript Karite us'd by M. Selden)Selden de Ann. Civil. vet. Judaeor. cap. 2. flourished sub annum 240 chiliadis Judaicae sextae, id est, Christi 1480. I shall shew what Talmudists much ancienter conceived, and what may be gathered from sacred Scripture concerning moneths and years which preceded the deliverance of the Israelites from [Page 173] their Egyptian bondage. I shall speak briefly, first of the Rosch Hasschana; secondly, of moneths; lastly of years. The Neomenia of Tisri, if we stand to the traditions of the Hebrew Doctours, will seem to have been in the pri­mitive times of the world, for all affairs whether sacred or civill: the Rosch Hasschana. Tisri is voted the first moneth by a prevailing faction of suffrages, whether we attend number or value. Among the Jews who wrote in Greek, Philo and Josephus, and among the ancient RabbinesSec Seder O. lam Rabba cap. 4. Abarbinel upon the hi­story of the floud. Eliezer and Jehosuah are divided about this question.

Josephus and R. Eliezer affirm, that Tisri was the first moneth of the yeare, till the institution of the Passeover. To these may be added Jonathan Ben Uziel who was more ancient, and the authour of Mechilta, who was later then Philo, Josephus, and Eliezer. Jonathan Ben Uziel thus paraphraseth upon 1. Kings 8.2. [...] Ex quo data est lex & scri­ptum est de Ni­san, quòd ille caput mensiū, vocatus est Tisri (mensis) septimus. Thus R. S. Jarchi upon 1. Kings 8.2. [...] Et congregati sunt ad Regem Solomonem, omnes viri Israe­litae in mense Ethanim, quem vocabant mensem primum, infestivitate: sed nunc ille mensis est septimus.

The Latine translation of the Chaldee paraphrase in the Spanish Bibles, and Buxtorf's Rabbinicall Lexicon (upon the word [...]) omit the article prefixed to [...], and in­terpret part of Jonathans sentence by in mense quem ve­teres vocabant mensem primum, &c. The sense for sub­stance is the same, but I should rather construe [...] as before, if the prefix be added,Its added likewise by Rasi, & R.D. Kimchi accor­ding to Bom­berge and Buxtorfe. as in Bomberg's and Buxturf's editions of Jonathan Ben Uziel. [...] may signifie indifferently, in mense quem veteres, or in mense Ethanim. [...] as well as [...] is interpreted by fortis: [...] is pluralis emphaticus, the same that [...]; and the prefix may be a note of the genitive case, as well as a relative.

R. D. Kimchi upon that text in the first of Kings now [Page 174] quoted, suggesteth five reasons of moment for which the moneth that in Solomons time was the seventh, is called Ethanim, two of which speak out that the seventh was the first till the Israelites were brought out of Egypt. 1. The fruits which are gathered in Tisri, strengthen man. 2. There are in that moneth solemnitates honorabiles & fortes, seu celebres. 3. Thsre's strength and validity in the authority by which the festivals of that moneth were in­joyn'd. 4. The strong ones of the world, our first parents were in that moneth created. 5. Then were laid the strong foundations of the earth. This Doctour in the same place observeth, that the Israelites onely were command­ed to celebrate Nisan as the first moneth of the yeare. [...] Quia sic dixit illis Deus be­nedictus: M [...]nsis hic vobis ( [...]rit) principium mensium, vobis omnino, quia caeteris nationibus non est mensis pri­mus. Nam Tisri (illis) est primus. In the Chaldee para­phrase upon the Pentateuch known by the name of Jo­nathan Ben Ʋziel, the seventh moneth (Gen. 8.4.) in which the ark rested on the mountains of Ararat, is ( [...]) the moneth of Nisan. I should have omitted this testimony,See Elias Levita in his Preface to his Methurgeman were it not much suspected that Jonathan Ben Ʋziel, whose suffrage I before cited, para­phrased not upon the Law.

Eliezers judgement touching the most ancient beginning of the yeare, is quoted and approv'd in Bereshit Rabba by Rasi, Abarbinel, and others. Nachmanides likewise upon the history of the floud, saith, the world was created in Tisri; and that the yeare began in Tisri till Israel came out of Egypt.

Rambam in his Perusch of Rosch Hasschana, upon those words in the first Chapter of that Tractate [...] Primo die▪ Tisri initium [Page 175] anni annis, hath this glosse, [...] the first of Tisri (according to the Talmud explain'd by Maimon.) is the beginning of years by which we number the age of the world.

Those who make Tisri the most ancient beginning of the yeare,See pag. 122, 123. Babilonia in which our first parents are supposed to have been created, so little vari­eth from Canaan in longitude and latitude, that they have almost the same autumne. But moreouer the greater part of the testimonies pro­duc'd, depend not upon the situati­on of Eden. They affirm that the world was created in or near that season which was autumne to Chal­dea, Canaan, Egypt, and other countreys not much distant from these. I may adde to the testimo­nies before cited, the opinion of the ancient Egyptians. They affirm that the world was created in Libra. In istis enim posterioribus partibus (viz. Librae) terra dicitur esse composita, ut Barbarica ratio confirmat. Pirmicus lib. 7 cap. 3. are countenanced by those rea­sons which contend that the world was created in Autumne, and by Exod. 23.16. (and 34.22.) where the feast of in-gathe­ring (which was wont to be celebrated in Tisri) is said to be in the end of the year. The yeare which ended in autumne, ne­cessarily began in autumne. ButDe variis annorum formis, cap. 2. Lydi­at (I confesse) prevaileth so farre with me, that I conceive neither the time in which the world was created, nor yet the most ancient beginning of the yeare to be fully cleared by sacred Scripture.

The sentence before praised which I find in Eusebius, quoted out of Enoch (viz. [...]) determineth not whether the first mo­neth of the Hebrews yeare, was near the Autumnall or Vernall Equinox. But unlesse the vernall equinox be inti­mated by Enoch, the place is [...] to the purpose for which it is alledged.For larger satisfaction see Sixtus Se­nensis Biblio­thecae Sanctae l. 2. p. 84. & 85. Petrus Gas­sendus de vita Peireskii, lib. 5. p. 169. The work ascribed to Enoch the Pa­triarch (quoted by S. Jude) wch seemeth to be here pointed at, (besides that it was esteem'd spurious by the Jews, and the Doctours of the Primitive Christian Church) cannot pretend beyond a prophecy for the time of the Israelites after the Exodus. We receive as most probable, that Tisri in those times was the beginning of the Civil, Nisan of the Ecclesiasticall yeare.

[Page 176]It remains that I relate what the Talmudists deliver concerning moneths, for the times before the deliverance from Egypt.

Aben Ezra upon Exod. 12. telleth us that we find in in Scripture onely three names of moneths, Zif, Ethanim, Bul, ( [...]) in the holy language (or Hebrew) that the rest are ( [...]) in the language of the Caldeans; and occurre onely in Zachary, Daniel, Ezra, and Hester ( [...]) who were in the captivity. That moneth which was the first of the yeare before the deliverance of the Israelites from Egypt, (afterwards cal­led Tisri) is named Ethanim, 1. Kings 8.2. that which was the second (since called Marcheschvan) is Bul, 1. Kings 6.38. And the eighth (now called Jiar) is Zif, 1. King. 6.1. Some (I know) have thought that Abib was the proper name of a moneth; but Aben Ezra dissenteth from them in the place quoted, and justly, unlesse R. D. Kimchi in's Se­pher haschoraschim, and Elias Levita in's Methurgeman, be defective in their explications of the word Abib. The word must needs be otherwise construed, in Lev. 2.14. we have mention of a second moneth; Gen. 7.11. and 8.14. of a seventh moneth, Gen. 8.4. of a tenth, v. 5. of a first moneth, v. 13. Moses in his Chronology of the floud, pro­bably was directed to write in the dialect of the age in which the floud happened. It's impossible to prove that in those times moneths were otherwise distinguished, then by numbers expressing their order.

The Talmudists, some of them, so expresse that the ob­serving of the phasis was enjoyn'd at what time the Passe­over was instituted, or afterward on mount Sinai, as that they intimate it was not in use in times more ancient. (I shall not here repeat what testimonies I before quoted to this purpose.) Baal Hatturim upon Exod. 12. observeth, that [...] Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, is near to [...] it shall be the first moneth of [Page 177] the yeare to you, [...] quia non consecrant [neomenias ad phasin] nisi in Syne­drio magno. Some Hebrew Doctours by [...] Exod. 12, 2. understand the moon newly appearing after a conjun­ction. God, say they, shewed Moses the new moon in the firmament, and commanded that the phasis should be rec­koned ( [...]) the beginning of each moneth. Rasi upon the comma quoted, maketh mention of this conceit, but rejecteth it. Rambam in his comment upon the second chapter of Rosch Hasschana believeth it.

Abarbinel telleth us (in Parasch. [...]) that every nation before the deliverance of the Israelites from Egypt, numbred moneths and years; [...] Et notum est, quod non fiebat hoc ab iis figendo neomenias ad phasim lu­nae, sed ad suos uniuscujusque gentis epilogismos.

We cannot conclude from the notation of Chodesch, [...]he word by which a moneth is signified in the history of the floud, that the first phasis of the moon after a conjunction was in times so ancient, the beginning of the civill mo­neth. Theres [...] renovatio in the beginnings of the moneths of peragration, and of consecution. The quan­tity of the moneths mentioned in the history of the de­luge is variously defin'd among the Talmudists.

R.S. Jarchi consenteth with [...] Eliezer, that moneths in the age of the floud were alternatim full and hollow▪ viz. (that I may with Hebrew authours call the moneths by those names which they obtain'd not till many generations after) Tisri had 30 dayes, Marcheschvan 29, Casleu 30. Tebat 29, &c. To these adde Sedar Olam Rabba. The computation of moneths & dayes mentioned in the history of the floud, is the same in the fourth chapter of that chronicle, and with Rasi. With Abarbinel the 150. dayes, in which the waters prevail'd upon the earth, are the whole distance be­tween [Page 178] the beginning of the rain, and the ark resting upon the mountains of Ararat, and ( [...]) five perfect moneths. He must necessarily mean by five perfect moneths, the extent of five perfect moneths; he could not but take notice, that one fifth part of the time between the beginning of the rain, and the resting of the ark consisted, according to his own supposition, of two pieces of moneths added together, viz. part of Marcheschvan, and part of Nisan. He conceiv'd not (as 'tis manifest from what I lately cited out of his comment upon Exodus) with the Karites, that the foure moneths between the second and the seventh, obtain'd each of them 30 dayes, by reason of the phasis intercepted, but that the modus of the civil moneth in the age of the deluge was 30. dayes.

Nachmanides in Parasc. Noah. differeth from some He­brew Doctours, whose opinion he there citeth, about the distance between the beginning of the rain, and the ark resting upon the mountains of Ararat; but together with those and Abarbinel, extendeth the 150. dayes of the pre­vailing of the waters, from the beginning of the rain, to the 17 of Nisan.

It's clear, that had the civill moneths in the age of the floud been conform'd as near as 'twas possible, to the di­stances between conjunctions, Eliezer and Rasi, &c. were much to be preferred before these last quoted. The twelve houres by which (besides minutes) the moneth of consecu­tion (or space between two conjunctions) exceedeth 29 dayes, multiplied by 12. make six dayes, which accor­ding to these authours, were digested each yeare into so many full moneths. But it's sufficiently known, that the civill moneths of most nations anciently, as do the Julian one excepted, exceeded the space between conjun­ctions.

The notation of Chodesch, the word by which a moneth is signified in the history of the floud, no more intimateth that the civill moneth in Noahs time, was rigourously [Page 179] conform'd toNaturalis mensis est du­plex, aut enim lunaris, aut solaris: rursus lunaris t [...]iplicis generis: aut quatenus luna ab eadem puncto z [...]d [...]aci profecta, ad idem revertitur; qui dicitur [...], [...]tem [...] quod intervallum minus est, quam viginti octo dierum, majus quàm viginti septem. Secundum genus est ejusdem sy­deris à sole profecti, ad eundem reditus Haec dicitur [...] Tertii generis men­sis est secundus dies [...], quae dicitur [...], & [...], Scalig. de emendat. temporum lib. 1. pag. 9. any kind of naturall moneth, then doth the derivation of the word moneth, that our moneths now u­sed are such.

About moneths there are (as I have shewed) three opinions, into which the Hebrew Doctours are parted, one of the Karites, and two of the Talmudists.

The Karites who would obtrude upon the times before the Exodus, their uncertain accompt are overpowred, and born down by the authority of the Talmudists. This other sect of Jews hold part of them, that moneths were alternatively full and hollow; other of them, that each moneth had 30 dayes. Among those who embraced the former opinion, the authour of Seder Olam Rabba, and jarchi reckon the 17. day of Marcheschvan the first, and the 27. of Casleu the last day of the fourtie in which the rain descended; the 28. of Casleu the first, and the 29. (or last day) of Jiar the last day of the 150. in which the waters prevailed upon the earth; and the 17. of Siwan (which is the seventh moneth to Casleu in which the rain ceased) the day on which the ark began to rest on the mountains of Ararat; and the tenth moneth, on the first day of which the mountains appeared, to be Ab, the tenth to Marcheschvan in which the rain began to descend. The first of Siwan, on which the waters began to decrease, is computed the first of the fourty dayes, after which Noah opened the window of the ark.

Some writers, who believe that the moneths in Noahs time were one full, and another hollow throughout the yeare, conceive that the ark rested on the mountains of Ararat on the 17. of Nisan, and least there should want room for the 150. dayes, affirm that the yeare of the floud was embolismaeus.

[Page 180]Those who hold that in the yeare of the deluge, Casleu Tebat, Sebat, and Adar (were [...]) had each of them 30. dayes, and at least seem all of them to have thought each moneth in the age of the floud and times ad­joyning, to have been of the same measure, entertain'd se­verall opinions concerning the time of the resting of the ark.

Augustine, and Bede, and many other Christians▪ affirm that the moneth in which he ark rested, was the seventh of the deluge, not of the yeare; and that hereby an eternall sabbath is shadowed out unto us. The ark (with S. Peter) is a type of the Church, which accor­ding to an ancient Cabbala (whether de­rived from some divine revelation; or onely from some private spirit, I know not) shall about the beginning of the 7. chiliade be completely received in­to eternall rest. Nachmanides and A­barbinel affirm, that it rested upon the mountains of Ararat on the seventeenth of Nisan.Some quoted by Nachmanides preferre the 17. of Jiar. They allow a moneth for the abating of the wa­ters after the end of 150. dayes in which the waters prevailed upon the earth. There's yet place for another opinion, viz. that there was a double Adar in the time of the deluge, and the 150. dayes expired the space of a full moneth before the 17. of Nisan. Those who held that moneths then in the age of the floud were throughout common years one full and the next hollow, cannot unlesse they intercalate a moneth between Marcheschvan and Nisan, with any face of reason affirm that the ark rested on the 17. of Nisan upon the moun­tains of Ararat. The space between the beginning of the rain, and the resting of the ark, unlesse a moneth extraordi­nary intercede, cannot possibly according to their supposi­tion, amount to so much as 148. dayes. Casleu should con­tain 30. dayes, Tebat 29, Sebat 30. Adar 29. to which must be added, should the rain have begun together with the 17. of the second moneth,Some Jews affirm that the rain begun in the day time. (which some deny) 13. dayes of Marcheschvan. The summe is 131. 16 dayes of Nisan added, produce 147. Former ages have not suffici­ently inform'd us whether or no any dayes or moneths were intercalated before the beginning of the yeare was altered, much lesse that this or that kind of embolisation was then used. I should believe, were it clear'd that there [Page 181] was intercalation in those times, that there was a We­elul rather then a Weadar. The authour of [...] thus reasoneth, that when Nisan was the first moneth of the yeare, no moneth but Adar ought to be doubled by intercalation. [...] &c. Non autem embolisant nisi Adar: cujus rationem inveni, quod scilicet impossibile sit alium mensem in anno superaddere praeter Adar, quem faciunt Adar secundum: Nam Nisan est caput anni a quo computamus menses, cùm scriptum sit, Primus ille est vobis: & de Sivan dicitur, In mense tertio: & de Tisri dicitur, In mense septimo: & de Tebat dici­tur, In mense decimo: & de Adar dicitur, in mense duo­decimo, qui est mensis Adar. Quod si duplicarent mensem alium, non satisfieret Scripturae.

The Hebrew authour de neomeniis & tecuphis, trans­lated into Latine by Munster, sub titulo [...] translationes & sanctiones, hath this sentence [...] Dicimus autem à diebus Ezrae & deinceps, non inveniri Elul embolisatum. But he meaneth, I conceive, a day was not inserted in Elul, but in Marcheschvan, when an acces­sion of a day was made to the ordinary yeare by reason of translations of feasts, which being granted, his sentence implyeth not that Elul was doubled in times more ancient. The Chaldeans, as Scaliger affirmeth De Emend. Temp. l. 2. after they had received the calippicall period, as oft as a moneth was to be inserted, had Elul alterum in the end of their yeare. Scaliger (in the book now praised) speaking of the yeare of the ancient Hebrews, which began in Autumne, saith, Fine anni, ut solet, intercalabatur mensis.

[Page 182]Other arguments are obvious against those who hold that an Adar was intercalated in the yeare of the deluge.

1. Their opinion hath no foundation in sacred history, nor yet in humane of any antiquity.

2. Were it granted that the ordinary civill yeare in No­ahs time consisted of 354. dayes, no one can attain by mere conjectures whether or no they conform'd their civil years to solar years, much lesse what kind of intercalation, if any, was then used. The excesse of the solar yeare might severall wayes be digested into their civill accompt.

Those who repute the moneth in which the ark rested on Ararat, the seventh to the beginning or end of the rain, not to the beginning of the yeare, are sufficiently refuted by Abarbinel. He well observeth (upon the Paraschah [...]) that the Scripture saith, [...] and the waters prevailed 150. dayes, not [...] and the waters yet prevailed 150. dayes. He useth another reason not to be pretermitted, which he thus expresseth, [...] Quis auscultabit huic sententiae scil. Quod commemorentur in eadem pa­rascha mensis secundus, & septimus, & decimus, & pri­mus, & secundus, ne (que) referantur ad idem notum initium.

Abarbinel judgeth those, as altogether irrationall, not to be heard, who reckon not a second, and seventh, and tenth, and a first, and a second moneth, mentioned in the same paraschah, from the same beginning He meaneth, that moneths mentioned in the same paraschah, and described by their order, have all of them the same individuall Epo­cha, or Epochas ejusdem rationis. Those five moneths mentioned in the 7. and 8. chapter of Genesis, are all to be reckoned from the beginning of the yeare, but three of them are describ'd by their posture in the 600. the o­ther two by their order in the 601. yeare of No­ah's life. Sacred Chronology contain'd in the history of [Page 183] the deluge, is much disordered, if the beginning of Siwan be made (as in Seder Olam Rabba) the epocha of the 40 dayes, at the end of which Noah opened the window of the ark, or if part of them be disposed before the first of the tenth moneth.

I cannot but much preferre that opinion, which maketh the measure of the civill moneth in Noahs time 30. dayes. Nothing is repugnant to it in the history of the floud. Ac­cording to such computation, although no moneth were in­tercalated between the second and the seventh, the resting of the ark should not be protruded by the 150 dayes in which the waters prevail'd, beyond the 17. of Nisan.

The Karites who make the second moneth (which they conceive to have been Jiar) hollow, include in the 150. dayes of rain, both the whole 17. of the second, and like­wise of the 7. moneth. But the ark rested on the 17. of the 7. moneth, yet not till after the space of 150. dayes in which the waters prevailed. It may be objected, that Luk. 2.21. eight dayes are said to be accomplished, which were not completely past, [...]. And when eight dayes were accomplished for the circumcision of the child. He was circumcis'd on the eighth day. Eight dayes may be said to be accomplished, or the number of eight dayes to be filled up, whether the eighth day be current or completed.

1. Had the same phrase been used, Gen. 8.3. had it been said, When 150 dayes were accomplished, the waters were abated, the words might possibly, but should not necessari­ly signifie, that the waters were abated before the end of 150 dayes.

2. We ought rather to conceive, that the waters were not abated till the end of 150 dayes. Such constructions of the place should be as consistent with other sacred Scri­ptures, and humane history, and the light of naturall rea­son, as that other, whereof the words should be capable; and more proper and usuall. 'Twas otherwise in that place [Page 184] of Luke now cited. God had determined circumcision to the eighth day. Christ came to fulfill the Law. We reade of no necessity by which his circumcision should be de­ferred.

In the interpretation of Scripture, that sense is to be preferred, caeteris paribus, which is most proper and usuall.

3. The words Gen. 8.3. are [...] from the end of an hundred and fifty dayes. The particle prepos'd is a partition between the 150. dayes, and the times in which the waters were so much abated, that the ark might rest upon the mountains of Ararat. Scaliger (De Emend. Temp. l. 5.) assigneth to the moneths in the time of the deluge, the same quantity. The common yeare in Noahs time, contain'd as we see 360. dayes.

According to Scaliger, the dayes by which the solar year exceedeth annum aequabilem, [...], consisting of 360 dayes, (which the Hebrews call [...] annum die­rum) when they became 30, were intercalated at the end of the yeare. Moreover, for quadrants of dayes in solar years above 365 complete dayes, a moneth was intercala­ted after 120 years.

I cannot assent to Lydyat, endeavouring to demonstrate the measure of the yeare used in times ancienter then the confusion of languages, à priori. I cannot see why I should believe, that the long-liv'd Patriarchs used the most exact form of civill years, rather then that they were complete in all arts and sciences.

Neither can I conceive that Scaliger's doctrine concern­ing intercalations used in those ancient times, is confirm'd unto us by due testimonies.

We are uncertain (as I have prov'd) both concerning the number of years between the creation of the first, and the birth of the second Adam, and likewise concerning the measures of years by which the affairs of the Israelites and their fore-fathers were computed in that segment of time. Incerta haec si quis postulat ratione certâ facere, nihilo [Page 185] plus agat, quàm si det operam ut cum ratione insauiat. My labour will not be thought needlesse, unlesse by such as are ignorant, or else attend not that many have arrogated a kind of certainty to chronology in those parts, which I have demonstrated to be most uncertain, and that others have been so fond as to believe them. Sacred Chronology enableth us not to assigne to the events registred in the Scriptures, their true positures in the age of the world. Humane Chronology leaveth us much more perplexed and doubtfull. Besides that it is not agreed by writers of good note, what is the distance of any other ancient remarkable epocha from the creation, or from any time near us, scarce about the distance of any epocha from another, whether on this side or beyond it; famous events are variously dis­posed in time reckoned from each Aera. Learned Master Broughton hath plentifully discovered, that there is much difference among the Greek writers in chronicling things according to the Olympiads. The Romane Consuls are diversly listed in the Capitoline and Sicilian Calenders; and Epiphanius departeth from both. The Jews are divi­ded about the accompt us'd by their forefathers in the land of Canaan, and some of them derive their present accompt from our first parents. It's sufficiently clear'd, that Chro­nology (besides that detriment which it sustaineth by rea­son of the Jews uncertain accompt) compar'd with other parts of the Encyclopaedia, laboureth with a triple disad­vantage.

1. It dependeth much upon humane authority. 2. Up­on expressions which without new revelation cannot be understood. 3. It containeth contradictions, neither part of which can without a miracle be disprov'd. The first and second difficulty are frequent (I confesse) in other par­cells of history (usually so call'd) the third is almost pe­culiar to Chronology; many parts of learning are wholly exempted from them all. Some, left they should not be [...]pu [...]ed to know somewhat unknown to others, professe [Page 186] skill beyond the peripherie of possible knowledge. Among all the sects of students, Chronologers and Astrologers are most frequently guilty of this flush'd boasting. I affect not to be a sceptick in Chronologie. I acknowledge that there is singular use of this piece of history; but would have those who professe skill in it, contain'd within due bounds, nor dare to attempt any thing beyond sobriety.

Chronology in its full dimensions, sith God who is ad­equately perfection it self, knoweth the moments of all changes, the birth and age of each being, all opinions and expressions concerning these circumstances; cannot but be in it self desirable; yet because ( [...]) Mans life is short, and art long, (I may adde) and our proficiency in knowledge but slow, ought to give place to some other studies. [...], and vice versâ, a lesser good hath in it rationem mali. The history of things applyed to times (in which they began, endured, ended) hath not immediate influence into our spi­rituall or temporall affairs; yet is to be preferr'd before o­ther studies, more directly usefull in our lives, when it ushereth in any knowledge more advantagious then im­provements yet wanting, which may be obtained with­out it.

1. To attain skiil in the greatest part of the Encyclo­paedia, viz. in the fundamentall points of Divinity, Lan­guages, Grammar, Rhetorick, Arithmetick, Musick, Geo­metry, Metaphysicks, Morall Philosophy, the greatest part of Naturall Philosophy and Astronomy, dependeth no­thing at all upon Chronology.

2. We can easily believe that there is truth in contin­gent axioms contain'd in sacred Scriptures, although we at­tend not to the times in which things came to passe.

3. We can as easily believe humane writers relating what came to passe, as reporting the time in wch it came to passe.

4. Some knowledge of things applyed to certain times (or places) neither immediately nor remotely conferreth any thing [...].

[Page 187]I readily acknowledge that some parts of Chronologie conferre much to the knowledge of things which are ap­plyed to time, and of things distinct from them. Astrono­my relieth much upon the records of the times in which Astronomicall observations were made. Naturall Philo­sophy and Astrology may be advanc'd by the times of the events upon earth; compar'd with the positures of the hea­vens. A rule cannot be founded upon a single observation. Histories which are conversant about the same times, mu­tually explain one another. The Chronology in heathens, if we deal with infidels may con [...]liate credit to the sacred Scriptures. We are much enabled to judge of testimonies concerning the customes and events of former ages, by knowing in what riches the authours lived. Lastly, Gods providence is much illustrated by Chronology, as it infor­meth us that sinne hath sometimes been punished whilst it was in act, or immediately after; and that Gods servants have been delivered in times of their greatest straits and necessities. These advantages we may receive in some mea­sure from such chronology as former ages have transmitted to us, howsoever perplex'd and imperfect. Of such I spake before, not of Chronology in the abstract, nor according to such actuated perfection as it was capable of. Histori­ographers oft vary in their reports, and sometimes are so counterpoiz'd, that it's difficult to pronounce any party vi­ctorious. Caeteris paribus, the more ancient are to be prefer­red before later, who were more intelligent before such as were lesse skilfull; those who wrote without prejudice, be­fore such whose affections were engag'd; the more honest, before such as were lesse consciencious, & a greater number before a lesse. Advantages are sometimes so distributed, that the controversie cannot be determined. But what's a­verred onely by one authour, much more what by many, if it neither be repugnant to any artificiall reason, nor yet contradicted by any testimony, may justly challenge our assent. The concurrence of some events and order of o­thers [Page 188] are confirmed unto us by full consent of witnesses. The [...] of Naturall Philosophy may for the most part be approv'd or disprov'd by new experience.

It's already confess'd that Chronology abstracted from its usefulnesse (which may fitly be termd Chronologie spo­liata) is an ornament to the understanding; moreover, that Chronology is helpfull to the judgement; memory and re­miniscencie likewise receive much aid from the circumstan­ces of time and place, but almost equall from these true and feigned.

I have shewed the use of Chronology, and where those who study to apply [...], must write their nè plùs ultrae.

Its clear that learning might have been much advanced above her present [...], had some of most able parts been contented with truth, and not preferred their divinations and fictions.



Pag. 51. lin. 14. after immediately from God, (adde) or an Angel;

Pag. 53. lin. 4. —by himself, (adde) or by an Angel,

Pag. 122. lin. 16. —complete 2314. The Samaritane (as we see) differeth from the Jews Pentateuch. Scaliger divined not right in his seventh book De Emendat. Tem­perum. His words are these: Tantum abest, ut aliquid assuerint (Samaritani) Pentateuche, ut totidem literis quot Judaei, scriptum habeant. Petrus GassendusDe vita Peiriskii. l. 2. pag. 113. telleth us, (what I could not but suspect from the sentence now quoted) that Scaliger never saw the Samaritane Penta­teuch. The Samaritanes Chronicle no more derogateth from their Pentateuch, by commending to us a differing accompt of the yeares of the Patriarchs, then do some He­brew and other Chronologers (who dissent among them­selves, and from the Scripture,) from the authority of the Pentateuch transmitted to us by the Jews.

Pag. 129. lin. 23. —make up 3420 years. But one yeare must be substracted, in that the yeare in which the Temple began to be builded, is given to the segment of time pre­ceding, and also to that between the foundation of the Temple, and the destruction of Jerusalem. I cannot di­vine under what pretence M. Broughton could admit that [...] into his Chronology.

Pag. 152. In margine ad sententiam istam. For the ex­tent of this moneth he appealeth to R. Simeon, the sonne of Gamaliel.

Scriptor Hebraeus anonymus, (quem Latinitate dona­tum unà cum Messahalâ de elementis & orbibus coele­stibus, &c. edidit Hillerus Mathematum Noribergae professor, aerae Christi anno 1549.) hanc mensis Lunaris quantitatē acceptam refert cuidam sapienti, qui dicebat se eam accepisse à quodam antiquo, qui fuit de domo David. Cisleu ibid. Lerusleph appellatur, & Siwan Vuan, deinde [Page] secundus Adar intercalaris indigitatur.

Pag. 154. lin. 31. Quod si quis vocabulo [...] ra­dices computorum significari mavelit, non admodum re­pugno: sed nisi Abarbinel ad pauca respexerit, saltem mi­nùs Grammaticè quàm par erat, conceptus suos expresse­rit, altera praeferenda videtur interpretatio.

Pag. 161. lin. 17. — vel unius momenti. The Ano­nymous Hebrew writer before quoted, thus speaketh in the Latine translation set out by Hillerus: Veruntamen rema­nebunt nobis semper in omnibus novendecim annis; inter solares & lunares una hora; & 485 minuta, secundum in­tentionem gentium & plebiscita earum. Sed secundum in­tentionem certam, qua est apud nos; inter annos solares & lunares exacto decemnovenali annorum circulo; nulla re­liqua est differentia: sed perpetuo redeunt ad idem trans­acti circuli punctum, & revertitur computatio ad primum principium. He confirmeth in these words, that the lunar enneadecaeteris which exceedeth 19 Julian years by one houre & 485 scruples, was transmitted from the Heathens to the Jews, and that the Jews had another enneadecacte­ris (which he seemeth to preferre) invented by some one of their own nation, that made equall the motions of the two luminaries.

Two other periods of the anonymous Hebrew writer now prays'd, might have been digested into the Treatise next preceding, which are these: Prima conjunctio super quam componuntur computationes ad extrahendum omnes con [...]unctionet, est conjunctio anni imaginati, de quo non habemus nisi sex dies. Sicut legitur, Dixerunt nostri an­tiqui in vigesimo quinto die mensis Elul, creatus fuit mundus.


Pag. 5. lin. 7. lege. ingenuous, p. 29. in marg. lin. 6. pro first lege fift. pag. 38. l. 22. cloud. p. 41. l. ult. [...]. p. 44. l. penult. [...], lin. ult. [...]. p. 45. l. 1. [...]. p. 48. l. 27. simple. p. 58. l. 21. pro [...] repone [...]. p. 60. l. 2. lege [...]. p. 62. l. 4. Lactantius. l. 19. [...]. p. 63. l. 22. paluda. mento. p. 73. l. antepenult [...]. In notis ad pag. cand. p [...]o Apollonius repone Apol [...]onias. p. 74. l. 36. insere onely between not and contradict. p. 75. l. 2. lege twenty fifth. p. 76. Theologicall. p. 77 in marg. l. 8. lege [...]. l. 13. est. p. 80. l. 17. pro besides repone betides. p. 81. l. 32. acts. p 82. l. 2. engraved. in marg. pag. ejusd. [...]. p. 86. l. 8. [...]. ibid. [...] p. 86. in marg. Ba [...] Nachman. p. 93. l. 4. integrity. l. 23. Terpsichore. l. 29. after That Christ came into the world, adae to save sinners. p. 99. l. 10. lege [...]. p. 112. l. ult. dele to. p 114. l 9. lege [...]. p. 116. l. 11. & 12. Pharmuthus. p. 118. in stead of Whence some errours in Chronology are occasioned, inscribe this title, The uncertainty of Chronology. l. 30. pro them repone Sem. p. 120. in marg. l. antepenult. lege Chal­daeis. p. 121. l. 2. dele 785. years, &c. v. 19 l. 14. lege to the end of the eleventh comma. p. 124. l 17. Aegyptian. l. 30. in that Scripture. p. 127. l. 19. [...]. p. 128. l. 24. [...]. p. 129. l. 33. in the 23. yeare of Nebuchad-rezzar. in marg. l. 5. 480. p. 134. insere between lin. 32. and 33. as he computeth. p. 141. Karaeorum sententia de veteribus gen [...]s suae neomeniis, ad paginae hujusce calcem imperfectè tradita. emendetur per ea quae praecedunt paginâ 138. p. 142. l 23. lege Maimon. Halach. Kiddusch Hachodesch. p. 143. l. 1. [...]. l, 18. above. p. 144 l. 5. pax. p. ejusd. l. 14. pro objection repone exception. p. 145. in marg. l. 6. sexdecim. p. 147. l. 19. out­pac'd. p. 149. l 31. [...]. ibid. [...]. p. 152 l. 22. anni. p. 153. l. 8. 793. p. 155. l. 11. post 29 dayes, adde sometimes one of them 30, the othe [...] 29 dayes. p. 156. l. 1. & 2. diametrally. p. 155. l. 4. pro or lege and. p 160. l. 22. secundum. p. 171. l. 24. after beyond it, adde duly characterized by some Astronomicall observation. pag. 172. l. 31. lege Eliah Ben Mosch (who was the authour of the manuscript us'd. p. 173. l 19. pro [...] repone [...]. p. 175. l. 24. [...]. p. 183. l▪ 15. pro rain repone the prevailing of the waters.

This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. Searching, reading, printing, or downloading EEBO-TCP texts is reserved for the authorized users of these project partner institutions. Permission must be granted for subsequent distribution, in print or electronically, of this EEBO-TCP Phase II text, in whole or in part.