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colour to any such charge, that it is really the best method of writing a history, as has been proved above a. . 3. It is very observable, that neither of the three Evangelists do join the account of Levi's call, and his feast together, by any such notes of time or phrases, as imply the immediate succession of one to the other. St. Matthew and St. Mark, after having related the call, subjoin the story of the feast, introduced thus, Kai éyéveto, and it came to pass. . St. Luke only tells us, that Matthew made him a feast, not at all specifying the time, when it was made.
4. It is also remarkable, that St. Mark and St. Luke, when they had finished the account of Levi's feast, and the discourse at it, do not join the following history to this with any note of time, so as to imply that it immediately followed it. But on the other hand, both of them begin the next story thus, Kæù éyéveto, and it came to pass, Mark ii, 22, 23, and Luke v. ult. and vi. 1. Now hence it follows, according to the corollary above, p. 92. that St. Matthew, who has prefixed a plain note of time to this history, is to be supposed to have observed the right order of time. .
5. The story of Jairus's..coming to our Saviour, cannot be placed any where else in St. Matthew's Gospel, but where it is in our present copies. This will appear from the phrase, by which it is introduced, Ταύτα αυτ8 λαλέντο» αυτούς, while he ωας speaking these things unto them. It is plain, that, when St. Matthew wrote this, it immediately followed some discourse of -our Lord's to several persons. But I affert, upon a close review of all the branches of this part of the history, there is not any one of them, after which St. Matthew can possibly be supposed to have wrote it, but after the discourse, to which it is now subjoined in our present copies. Hence it is very ridiculous in Mr. Le Clerc, and some other harmonizers, to place this period of the history after that which is not a difcourse of our Saviour's, but the words of the historian, viz. those, Matt. viii. 33. Mr. Whiston indeed has placed it after a discourse of our Saviour's to one of his disciples, Matt. viii. 22. but it is certain it was not wrote by St. Matthew, immediately after that branch, because that has been proved to be in its proper order of time. Besides, the words immediately preceding, according to Mr. Whiston's Harmony, are, 'o de Incãs cinev aútã, 'Axoné Der Mot, sai äpes, &c. But Jesus said unto him, Follow thou me, and do thou suffer the dead,&c. Our Saviour is speaking to one person in the fingular number ; and is it then likely, that St. Matthew's next words should be, Ταύτα αυτά λαλέντG- αυτούς, While he was peaking to them, &c. in the plural number ? But now as it stands in our present copies, speaking to them (autcās) very well follows the difcourse with John's disciples. All this considered, makes it, I think, exceeding probable, that Jairus's coming to our Saviour was immediately after the discourse, that immediately precedęs it in our present copies; and consequently, if that difcourse was at Levi's feast, that feast is now in its proper order: and so, if the call of Matthew was at that other time, where St. Mark and St. Luke do place it, the call and the feast were at two different times.
6. This will be yet further confirmed, if we consider the place where St. Mark and St. Luke relate this account of Jairus's coming to Christ. They place it immediately after the history of our Saviour's return from the country of the Gergelenes, and not after any discourse of our Lord's immediately preceding it. Now it is certain by St. Matthew's account, that it was at a time when our Lord was discoursing with se. veral people; it is plain therefore, that, in St. Mark and St. Luke's account, this story does not in point of time immediately follow that which it follows in the history, but some discourse of our Lord intervened in the mean time. Now either this intervening discourse is somewhere related in these Gospels of St. Mark and St. Luke, or it is not. If we fay it is, there can be no doubt, but that it is the discourse, which now immediately precedes it in our present copies of St. Matthew, and so the dispute is ended. On the other hand, to say it is not, seems very unreasonable, when we consider that
· P. 99, &c.
the discourse, which immediately precedes it in St. Matthew, is in these Gospels; and that a very good reason has been assigned, why they put it in another place, viz. because they had a mind to relate St. Matthew's call and feast, and the discourse at it, all together.
7. It may not be improper to observe, that in the antient Harmonies of Tatian and Ammonius (one of which was made in the second, and the other in the beginning of the third century), St. Matthew's call and feast were placed at two very distant times, and many histories interposed between them a. Austin, in his excellent treatise of the Harmony of the Gospels, by a very good argument, proved that St. Matthew's call is not in his Gospel in the right order of time, but was before the sermon in the Mount; because, says he, St. Luke mentions St. Matthew among the rest of the Apostles, that were with our Saviour in the Mount (ch. vi. 15.). He seems indeed to have been inclined to believe, that the feast was some time after the call; and hence Gerson, Chemnitius, and many others, have imagined this Father of that opinion ; but it is very plain to any one, who will consider his words closely, they have mistaken his meaning b.
Thus I have endeavoured, by several arguments, to confirm the supposition of Levi's. call and feast, being at two different times, and by a great deal of pains have endeavoured to get over a difficulty, which Mr. Whiston, after a little at: tempt, concluded impossible to be got over. There is indeed an
his late paraphrase on this place.
That I may not misrepre
a Atque hoc modo vetuftiffimæ etiam Harmoniæ Tatiani et Ammonii distincte ponunt, primo vocatio. nem Matthæi, et poftea convivium Matthæi in alio loco Harmoniæ, ut alio tempore poit fa&tum, collocant. Chemnit. Harm. Evang. cap. 43. in princ.
6 Hinc autem probabilius videtur, quod hæc prætermissa recordando Matthæus commemorat; quia utique ante illum sermonem in monte habitum, credendum est vocatum
effe Matthæum : in eo quippe monte, tunc Lucas commemorat omnes duodecim ex pluribus Discipulis electos, quos et Apoftolos nominavit. Afterwards Speaking of his feast he adds; Poffet videri, non hoc ex ordine subjunxisse, fed quod alio tempore factum est, recordatus in. terpofuifle, nifi Marcus et Lucas, qui hoc omnino similiter narrant, manifestarent in domo Levi discubuiffe Jesum. &c. de Consens. Evang. 1. 2, C. 26, 27,
fent him, I shall set it down in his own words. " A confi« derable time after what is related in the foregoing para« graph, namely, when Jesus was just come back from the “ country of the Gergesenes (as was related chap. viii. 28. " and ix. 1.), some others seem to have come to Jesus about is the same subject ; whereupon he gave them the same reaa fons, why it was not proper for his disciples to fast yet. " And a now it was, that while he spoke these things unto them, “ behold there came a certain ruler, &c.” In his annotations ön the place, he tells us ; “ This seems the best, because the « most natural and easy, way to reconcile this, Taūta aútê aa« RoŰrtos aútoīs, idoù dexwo, &c. of St. Matthew, with Mark v. 22. « and Luke viii. 41.” This opinion supposes the call of Levi, his feast, and the discourse that followed it, to be in our present copies of St. Matthew out of its proper order of time; and also that our present copies are exactly in this place, as St. Matthew wrote at first, viz. that after the discourse with John's disciples, St. Matthew immediately wrote, taūta aitš nadērtos aútors; while he spake these things to them. Now according to the Doctor, this attīs, them, must not refer to those to whom our Saviour was talking at Levi's feast, but to some others that he had discoursed with about half a year before. Is it credible that St. Matthew would write thus ? Chrift fpake fuch and such things to John's disciples; and while he was speaking to them, i. e. according to the Doctor, while he spake to some other persons. This is far from being natural and easy; it makes the Evangelift write not only inaccurately, but to a high degree absurdly b. But this is no new thing with Dr. Wells.
2. The other instance which seems to be out of its due order of time, and yet to have a note of immediate succession prefixed to it, is that of the disciples plucking the ears of corn on the Sabbath-day, chap. xii. I, &c. As it lies in our pre
. & Matt. ix. 18.
b Le Clerc, in his Paraphrase upon the Harmony of the Gospels, is the only person that I know of (besides the Doctor), who has taken
gelifts; and I cannot but think, when the Dc&tor comes to consider this matter again, he will not be ashamed to own, that he borrowed his opinion from Le Clerc.
sent fent copies, it follows the message of John the Baptist out of prison to Christ, with this notation of succession, 'Ev exsisw Trio -xcespoo, At that time, Jesus went out on the Sabbath-day through the corn, &c. whereas, says Mr. Whiston, this plucking of the ears of corn, was some months before the message of John the Baptist. For the proof of this, Mr. Whiston thinks it enough here, as well as in most of the other instances, to refer us to his Harmony; As, says he, will be evident in the Harmony. He attempts no other proof than this; and this really amounts to no more than if he had said, I have placed it so in my Harmony, and therefore St. Matthew wrote so. It is true St. Mark and St. Luke have placed this matter a great deal sooner in their history, viz. before the sermon on the Mount; but then it does not appear, that they designed to connect it to the preceding history by any express notation of the time. But though we take this for granted, and suppose that in our present copies of St. Matthew, this story of the disciples plucking the ears of corn on the Sabbath-day, is not in its proper order of time ; yet it does not appear to be misplaced since it was first wrote, because it is not connected to the preceding part of the history by a phrase, that necessarily implies immediate succession in point of time. The phrase here made use of by St. Matthew is, ir éxcivw tū xasçã, at that time, or about that time ; which phrale is undoubtedly made use of in Scripture chronology in a very large sense. So in the instance above-mentioned a out of the Old Testament, viz. that of Judah's going down to his brethren, Gen. xxxviii. 1, the story is introduced with the very fame phrase, 4177 nya At that time; whereas that history, to which it is prefixed, happened a considerable time before that, which it immediately fucceeds. This phrase therefore is not, as Mr. Whiston calls it, a, notation of succession, and consequently does not prove a dislocation in this part of the Gospel history. Mr. Whiston does indeed in another book (viz, his Accomplishment of Scripture Prophecies, p. 71.) make use of this fame note for the same end, viz. to prove the transposition of the fixth and seventh verses of the