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those who lived nearer to the time when the books were written. This he urges against this book, and faith, that it was not delivered as Canonical, and that no ecclesiastical writer has taken any testimonies out of it. But in this, says Mr. Toland“, Eusebius is mistaken; for the contrary appears by the testimonies marked in the catalogue, which any body. may compare with the originals. Valesius , and after him Father Simon, Dr. Grabe", and others, go farther, and charge Eufebius with contradicting himself; because himself, say they, in another place.(viz. that above, Numb. 1.) owns, that Clemens Alexandrinus cited it in the book of his Hypotyposes. Simon indeed attempts to say something in favour of Eufebius, adding, that perhaps Eusebius only intended, that no ecclesiastical author had quoted these books as divine and Canonical. And herein he is followed by Mr. Richardson, in his Answer to Mr. Toland, p. 75. But this is not likely, and, I must confess, is no other than what we commonly call, begging the question. Dr. Grabe accounts for it thus, viz. that Eufebius in the beginning of his book had not sufficiently acquainted himself with those things, and therefore said, no ecclesiastical writer had cited this book; but, upon farther enquiry into the old books, he found his mistake, and so owned what before he denied. But this is a very precarious and groundless supposition; inasmuch as it is certain that Eusebius had read the works of Clemens Alexandri. nus, and made large use even of the Hypotyposes under his name, before he had wrote this third book, where he says, that no ecclefiaftical writer took testimonies out of this book under the name of Peter. Besides, had Eusebius thus in the fixth book perceived the mistake he was guilty of in the third book (which-Dr. Grabe supposes he did), it was easy for him to have corrected it, by erasing what he had wrote falsely in the former place; but he not having done this, I conclude he was of the same mind, when he wrote both books. And though upon this hypothesis it may be thought, that Eusebius is
a Amyntor. p. 53, 54.
0 Annot. in Euseb. Hift. Eccl. 1. 3.6.3.
Sim. Crit. Hift. Nov. Teft.
Part I. c. 3. p. 25.
d Spicileg. t. 1. p. 57, 58.
e Vid. Hift. Eccl. 1. 1. c. 12. 1. 2. c. 1, 9, 15.
chargeable chargeable with contradi&tion to himself; yet, with submission to these learned men, I think the charge most unjustly laid ; for though he says, no ecclesiastical writer has taken testimonies out of the Revelation of Peter in one place, he does not say that Clemens Alexandrinus did take testimonies out of it in another: all that he says, is, that he wrote fome short notes upon it (inite Tumeéves dingsoes wenointas), which is a very different thing from y.mptupiało ouvexpńcato, i. e. taking testimonies out of it, or appealing to it as of any authority. Had the learned writers above-named observed this, I am persuaded Eusebius had not been suspected of a contradiction ; after all which I may fairly conclude, there is nothing to be gathered from Eusebius for the credit or authority of the Revelation of Peter.
IV. The last thing yrged for this Revelation is, that sozomen, a writer of the fifth century, says, it was read in some churches of Palestine once yearly, viz. the day of Christ's Parfion". Mr. Tolandó refers to this place of Sozomen in his Catalogue; and Dr. Grabe concludes from it, that it was not a book of the Hereticks, else it would not have thus been read. But inasmuch as Sozomen does not mention what sort of churches these were, whether of the Hereticks, or Catholicks; it is most reasonable to conclude the former, not only because of the known heterodoxy of the book, but because Sozomen in the very same place tells us, that it was rejected by the antients universally, as a Spurious piece.
Thus I have largely considered this Revelation that went under the name of Peter : whether it was a prophetick book concerning the miserable fate of the Jews, and the state of the Church to the time of Antichrift, as Dr. Grabe and Dr. Millo suppose, I shall not now enquire; only observe, that it was certainly Apocryphal by Prop. IV, V, and VI. I add also the IXth, as it contained things ludicrous and trifling, fabulous and filly relations; of which fort those are, produced above, Numb, 2, 3. concerning abortive children, the milk of women producing animals, &c. ,
* Hift. Eccl. 1. 7. C. 19.
d Lib. cit. p. 74.
CH A P. XXXVII. Other Books under the Name of Peter, viz. The Asts of Peter
by Leucius Charinus. The Gospel of Perfection, a Forgery of the Gnosticks. A Conjecture concerning the Reason of the Title, and the Contents of the Book. The Aets of Philip now extant in the Vatican. The Gospel of Philip. A Fragment of it. Its Contents, and abominable Doctrines. A Miftake of Mr. Du. Pin concerning it.
Numb. LIV. Other BOOKS under the NAME of
PETER. T HAVE given these, for method fake, a distinct title, be: I cause I find them so mentioned by Pope Innocent I". His words are, Cætera, quæ sub nomine But the other books under Matthæi, five Jacobi minoris, the name of Matthew, or vel fub nomine Petri et Jo- James the Less, or under the annis, quæ a quodam Leucio name of Peter and John, which fcripta funt non solum were written by one Leucius; repudianda, verum etiam no- know, that they are not only veris esse damnanda. . to be rejected, but condemned.
There can be no reafon to doubt, but these were the same with those Apocryphal Acts, of which I have largely treated. above, as being forged under the Apostles' names by Leucius Charinus, as will evidently appear from what is said Chap. XXI. especially from the passage of Photius.
Numb. LV. The GOSPEL OF PERFECTION.
THE most eninent and known Hereticks among the
1 Christians in the first ages were those called the Gnofticks; of whom Irenæus fays, that they forged an infinite
* In Decret. sive Epist. ad Exuper. Episc. Tholof.c.7. .
multitude of spurious and Apocryphal books ‘; and Epiphanius , that they made many Gospels under the names of the Disciples. Among the rest of their forgeries he mentions the Gospel of Perfection in the following manner,
"Aldo de E autūv wózon
TÍNasou ciocyou dywysmós to woinuci, wonteúματι επέθεντο όνομα, Ευαγγέλιον Τελειώσεως τέτο φάσκοντες και αληθώς εκ ευαγyéniou o to, arra wévtes τελείωσις» σάσα γαρ η τε Favát% TEMɛwois xv año Tole aúrn Útroom opsê oš A. cbókou iu pépetab.
But others of them produce a certain spurious and suppositi. tious work, to which work they have given the name of the Gospelof Perfection; which really is no Gospel, but the Perfection of Sorrow: for all the perfection of death (i.e. of deftruξtive doctrine) is contained in that product of the Devil.
It seems not difficult, from the very title of this fpurious book, to conjecture concerning the design or scheme of it. The Gnosticks, who forged it and used it, pretended to a greater perfection in knowledge and virtue than all others, and from thence took their very name rowsixoi; Gnoftici propter excellentiam fapientiæ, fic fe appellatos esse vel appellari debuisse gloriantur, &c. says Austin. de Hæref. t. 6. n. 6. See also Clemens Alexandrinus De Pædagog. I. 1. c. 6. et Stromat. 1. 2. p. 398. For the same reason they called themselves xatapoi, aveva tixos, &c. pretending to greater fanétity and perfection of life than all besides t; making themselves even wiser than the Apostles, and to have found out more perfect doctrines, as Irenæus says“; and hence they were wont to call Peter and the rest of the Apostles imperfect, as we learn from the same Fatherf; from all which it may perhaps be a just inference, that this Gospel had this title of Perfection, because it contained this their more perfect knowledge and great discoveries, which they had arrived to above even the Apostles, or any other Christians. If this conjecture be just, it is sufficient to prove it Apocryphal, from the design of it, by Prop. VIII. But whatever becomes of this conjecture, it was certainly (as Epiphanius calls it) spurious and supposititious, and therefore Apocryphal by Prop. IV, V, and VI."
a Adverf. Hæref. 1. 1. c. 17.
• Adv. Hæref. 1. 3. c. 2.
Numb. LVI. The ACTS of PHILIP.
CONCERNING these I have met with nothing in the
authors of those ages, to which I am confined, besides their being thus mentioned by Pope Gelasius, in his Decree:
Actus nomine Philippi apo. ftoli Apocryphi.
The Aets under the name of
Mr. Fabritius has produced a large fragment of these Acts out of Anastasiųs Sinaita, a writer of the seventh century; but this being so much after my time, I shall not transcribe it. The same learned writer in his third tome of additions to the two former acquaints us, that Papebrochius has published some Acts under the name of Philip, and saw, but did not think fit to publish, some other Afts under the name of Philip, which are in a manufcript of the Vatican. There being nothing of them extant in the writers of the first four centuries, I shall not form any other conjecture concerning them, than that they were probably made either by Leucius Charinus, or were an appendage to his work.
Numb. LVII. The GOSPEL OF PHILIP. AMONG the other forgeries of the Gnosticks, Epipha. A nius“ informs us there was one under this name, and. adds, that
a Cod. Apocr. Nov. Teftam. t. 2. p. 826.
o Ton. 3. p. 657.