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that, though it went up within land as far north as Sidon, it is not probable that it included that Cana. Besides, the empress Helena built a church at Cana in Galilee, and not in the Cana near Sidon, in memory of its being the place which had been distinguished by our Saviour's presence and miracles ; and it cannot be supposed that, in that age, the scene of those transactions should have been forgotten.
Of two Capas in Galilee, both of which agree sufficiently well with what Josephus says concerning the place of that name, one is mentioned by Reland, * as being situated between Sepphoris and Nazareth, six Roman miles from the latter, towards the west ; and the other, four miles north of Nazareth, towards the east.
Reland says, it is disputed which of these is the Cana mentioned in the Scriptures; but I think it very possible that these places may, in reality, be the same, their situation not having been accurately described.
That it must have been Cana near Nazareth that is spoken of by John, and not Cana near Sidon, seems to be evident from the most natural interpretation of what this evangelist says preceding his account of our Lord's arrival at that place, John ii. 1. Speaking of what passed at “ Bethabara beyond Jordan,” (John i. 28,) he says, “ The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” We read afterwards, (ver. 35,) “ Again the next day, John stood and two of his disciples ;” and ver. 43, “ The day following, Jesus would go forth into Galilee ; and on the evening of this day, Philip introduced Nathaniel to Jesus.
We then read, chap. ii. 1, “And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee,” which Jesus attended. Now it is most natural to suppose that the third day is to be counted from the date before mentioned, viz. the day on which he set out from beyond Jordan to go into Galilee; and this would not allow him time enough to go from Bethabara to Sidon, especially travelling on foot, as he probably did. Whereas, supposing it to be the Cana near Nazareth, he might very well go to it in less than two days, and there will be time enough for him to have stopped at Nazareth, and there to have received the invitation to Cana.
It is objected that when our Lord was at Cana afterwards, (John iv. 46,) the nobleman of Capernaum, whose son was cured by Jesus, at “the seventh hour” of the day, did not meet his servant, who left Capernaum at the same time, till the next day; which, supposing that they both set out immediately after the cure, requires that they must have, each of them, travelled at least five hours, and probably, from the nature of the occasion, very quick. But even this does not necessarily make the distance to exceed thirty miles, viz, five miles an hour without interruption. Besides, it is by no means necessary to suppose that both the master and servant set out precisely “at the seventh hour" of the day, and that nothing happened to retard either of them.
* Palestina, p. 680. (P.)
IX. There are three other circumstances of which different harmonists have availed themselves, as favouring their respective hypotheses, and which do not suit with that of Mr. Mann. But it appears to me that they supply no certain notes of time whatever, and therefore may very safely be neglected.
Sir Isaac Newton supposes, that when our Lord delivered the parable of the sower, it was then seed-time.* According to Mr. Mann's hypothesis, it was harvest. But the connexion between these two seasons is so great, that the one may very easily be supposed to have led his thoughts to the other. Besides, the parable does, in fact, relate to the harvest as well as to the seed-time.
The tribute which was demanded of our Lord, and which he paid in conjunction with Peter ; and also the reading of the prophet Isaiah, a portion of which our Lord expounded at Nazareth, are thought to indicate certain seasons of the year. But it has neither been determined with certainty by the critics what the tribute was, nor the time of the year in which it was paid. Much less are we able to tell
, at this distance of time, in what order the Jews read their sacred books in their synagogues, or whether they had one in variable custom in them all.
SECTION X.t The Order of the principal Events in the Gospel History.
Having, in the preceding Sections, exhibited the arguments in favour of a harmony of the Gospels, upon the hypothesis that the public ministry of Jesus lasted only a
year and a few months ; I shall now proceed to adjust the order of the particular transactions in the Gospel history, and to give my reasons at large for my arrangement of the principal facts. But these, I imagine, will be much more intelligible, if, in the first place, I just recite the facts in the order in which I imagine them to have happened.
The reader will please to observe, that the subject of this and the following Sections has little or no dependence on the general hypothesis I have endeavoured to support in the preceding ones; since the order in which any number of events may be supposed to have taken place, may be considered without any regard to the time that elapsed in the succession. In this case it is but substituting the word passover for pentecost, or the name of some other Jewish feast, and these Sections will suit any other hypothesis concerning the duration of Christ's ministry.
As most harmonists, I believe, are nearly agreed in the order of all the events preceding the baptism of Jesus ; at least, as nothing new has occurred to me with respect to them, I shall begin my narration at that period ; and in order to be as concise as possible, shall mention only such facts as may be sufficient to give a person who is tolerably acquainted with the New Testament, an idea of the order in which I should dispose the rest.
After his baptism and temptation, Jesus went into Galilee, and, at Cana, turned the water into wine. He then went to Capernaum, along with his mother, and the rest of the family; and going from thence to Jerusalem, at the first passover, held a conversation with Nicodemus.
After this, he made a short stay in Judea ; but the Pharisees taking umbrage at his making disciples there, he returned into Galilee; and passing through Samaria, conversed with the woman at the well.
Being arrived at Cana, he was met by a nobleman from Capernaum, who entreated him to heal his son ; and going from thence to that city, he called Peter and Andrew, James and John; and on the sabbath following, he cured a demoniac in the synagogue, and Peter's wife's mother in her own house, with many others. These miracles brought such a concourse of people about him, that the next morning, before it was day, he withdrew into a solitary place, whither his disciples resorted to him ; and, not choosing to return immediately to Capernaum, he made a circuit through the neighbouring towns and villages.
Great multitudes crowding to him from all quarters, he
addressed to them his excellent Sermon on the Mount. Presently after, he cured a leper, and not long after that, entering again into Capernaum, he healed the nobleman's servant. The day following, he was at Nain, where he raised the widow's son; and from whence, to avoid another concourse of people, he crossed the sea, stilling a tempest in his passage; and, landing in the territory of Gadara, he cured the demoniacs, when the swine were drowned.
Not making any stay in that country, he returned to Capernaum, and healed a paralytic person, who was let down through the roof of the house. After this he walked out by the sea side, and having called Matthew, he dined with him, and held a conversation with the disciples of John. While he was discoursing with them, Jairus applied to him to cure his daughter, who lay at the point of death. In his way he cured the woman who had the issue of blood, and after he returned from Jairus's house, he gave sight to two blind men, and cured a dumb demoniac.
Jesus having made himself obnoxious to the Pharisees, by vindicating his disciples for plucking ears of corn on a sabbath-day, and healing in the synagogue a man who had a withered hand, withdrew into a desert place, and, on a mountain, set apart the twelve apostles.
The multitudes crowding to him again, he healed their sick, and, among others, a blind and dumb demoniac; and when the Pharisees ascribed this cure to a correspondence with Beelzebub, he discoursed concerning the sin against the Holy Ghost; and when they asked of him a sign from heaven, he gave them the sign of the prophet Jonas ; and among other awful denunciations, he related to them the parable of the unclean spirit. While he was talking, and probably with a good deal of earnestness on this occasion, his mother and brethren desired to speak with him, which gave him an opportunity of expressing his superior regard to his disciples.
On the same day on which he held this discourse, he went to the sea side, and, for the greater convenience of speaking, stood in a ship, while he delivered several parables to the people standing on the shore; and, among others, that of the sower, which he afterwards explained to his disciples, reciting to them several others.
Leaving the neighbourhood of Capernaum, he went to Nazareth; and being rejected, and having had his life attempted by his countrymen of that place, he went into the neighbouring villages ; and seeing great multitudes, as sheep without a shepherd, he had compassion on them, and commissioned the twelve apostles to preach to them, and heal their sick.
In the absence of the twelve, the disciples of John apply to him, bringing a message from their master ; and when they had left him, he discoursed with the multitude concerning John, and at the same time pronounced a woe upon the places in which most of his mighty works had been performed.
About this time Jesus dined with Simon the Pharisee, to whom, when he was disgusted with the affectionate behaviour of a woman who had been a sinner, he related the parable of the creditor and two debtors.
Jesus, hearing of the death of John the Baptist, retired by ship into a desert place, together with the apostles who had resorted to him, and here he fed a great multitude with five loaves and two fishes. Having sent his disciples away by ship, while he stayed to dismiss the company, he came to them in the night, walking on the sea. They landed in the territory of Gennesaret ; and the multitude, influenced by worldly motives, afterwards following him to Capernaum, he discoursed with them in so mysterious a manner concerning bread, that the greatest part of those who had followed him hitherto, deserted him now.
At the feast of pentecost Jesus cured a cripple at the pool of Bethesda, and discoursed with the Jews concerning his mission ; but they seeking to kill him, he retreated again to Galilee, where he held a conversation with some Pharisees, who had followed him from Jerusalem, concerning traditions.
After this he went into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon, where he healed the daughter of a Syrophænician woman ; and being returned to Galilee, he cured a demoniac who was deaf, and had an impediment in his speech.
in his speech. Being in a desert place, he again fed a great multitude by a miracle. At Magdala he discoursed with the Pharisees concerning the signs of the times, and at Bethsaida he cured a blind man.
After this he made an excursion to the coast of Cæsarea Philippi, and there began to foretell his sufferings and future glory. His transfiguration happened six days after. Descending from the Mount of Transfiguration he cured a demoniacal child ; and after several discourses with his disciples, and other incidents at Capernaum, he took his final leave of Galilee. Travelling through Samaria, he