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him preach, and might have seen some other miracles done by him. Besides, as we are assured by St. Mark, upon our Lord's saying in the evening, "Let us pass over to the other side," he not only set out himself in the ship, where he had been preaching; but " there were also several other little ships," filled, it is likely, with men who had attended on his discourses in the day-time. These knew he was going to "the other side" of the lake; and would be there as soon as he, or before. In short, our Lord was now, as it were, in the height of his ministry. And we know from the evangelists, that before this time, he was followed with uncommon zeal by multitudes wherever he went, even into desert places. As is shown, Mark i. 45; and Luke iv. 42, 43. So that before this man, or these men, worshipped our Lord, or acknowledged him to be the Son of God, many people must have been gathered together.
P. 75. For proving that this unhappy person was not barely distracted, our author says: Besides, it is plain that 'he could not be apprised of his coming at that time, for 'the ship sailed over from the other side in the night. And so soon as Christ came ashore, and the man saw him at a 'distance, he ran to him, and worshipped him.'
But there is not sufficient precision in that proposition. Two things are joined together, which ought to be separated. When our Lord, and his disciples, (let me now add,) and other people, landed, he came toward them. And from the respect shown to our Lord by the disciples, and by all the company, he discerned him to be the principal person but he did not worship our Lord, nor confess him to be the Christ, until after some discourse, as appears from the history.
Matt. viii. 28, 29, already cited. "And when he was come to the other side, into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce-And, behold, they cried out saying: What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God?"
But let us compare the other evangelists. Mark v. 2, "And when he was come out of the ship, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spiritVer. 6-8, But when he saw Jesus afar off, he ran and worshipped him. And cried with a loud voice, and said: What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God? I adjure thee, that thou torment me not. For he had said unto him; Come out of him, thou unclean spirit."
And Luke viii. 27-29, "And when he went forth to
land, there met him out of the city a certain man which had devils long time-When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God Most High. I beseech thee, torment me not. For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the mau."
According to all the Evangelists therefore, this demoniac, or these two demoniacs, acknowledged Jesus to be the Son of God. But from St. Mark and St. Luke it appears, that this was not done until after our Lord had some discourse with him. From this discourse, and from the general intelligence which he had before received concerning Jesus, in the intervals of his disorder, he was enabled and disposed to speak of him as he did.
St. Mark alone expressly says, that the man of whom he speaks" worshipped" Christ. But the same thing is said by St. Luke in another phrase," he fell down before him." And it is implied in what is attested by all the Evangelists, that he acknowledged Jesus to be the Son of God. So in the history of the man born blind, whom our Lord had healed. John ix. 35-38," Jesus heard that they had cast him out. And when he had found him, he said, Dost thou believe on the Son of God? He answered, and said, Who is he, Lord, that I might believe on him? And Jesus said unto him, Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee. And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him." So likewise, after our Lord's ascension. Matt. xxviii. 17, " And when they saw him they worshipped him."
I have no intention to add any new arguments concerning the case of the demoniacs, mentioned in the New Testament. I rely upon those which were formerly alleged. And let every one judge as he sees best. But I would take this opportunity to propose some observations upon the history of the cure of the two unhappy men in the country of the Gadarenes, which have not been yet mentioned.
In accounting for the loss of the swine several things are said at Supplement to vol. I. Disc. IV. The distraction under which the man called Legion had laboured, was very grievous. He was a hideous form, and his action was very violent. When he had conceived the thought of gratifying the evil spirits, by which he imagined himself to be possessed, with the destruction of the swine, he would without much difficulty drive them off the precipice. If some few of them were put in motion, the whole herd would follow.
I would now say more distinctly, that the loss of the swine
was occasioned by a fright. When our blessed Lord said, "go," as in St. Matthew; or "he gave them leave,” or“ he suffered them," as in the other Evangelists; I think, that one or both the demoniacs went hastily toward the swine; and by some noise, or action, a few of them were affrighted; which fright was immediately communicated to the rest, whereupon the whole herd went off with great violence; and the way being steep and leading to the lake, they all perished in the water. This is easy to be apprehended.
There are very few who have not been witnesses to something like this in the horse; who takes fright at very slight things, one knows not what sometimes: though at other times from manifest causes. Whenever it happens, he runs away with great violence, to his own perdition and the great hazard and oftentimes to the great detriment of others: and, if there are several together, the whole set, or team, becomes ungovernable. This is certain, and well known to almost every body.
I have also observed in our fields near London, where have been many horses grazing, if one is frightened, all the rest are alarmed. The same is seen in our fields, where are large herds of horned cattle. If one is disturbed by the barking of a dog, or the sport of idle boys, or any other odd occurrence; all the rest, to the utmost bounds of the enclosure, are alarmed and put in motion. The same is likewise well known of flocks of sheep, and flocks of geese, and sparrows. If one of the flock take fright, all the rest hasten away in the same direction. I believe this to be true of all animals that are gregarious: as were these swine; a large herd, feeding by each other. If one or two of them took fright, and tended toward the lake; all the rest, without exception, would go off the same way with the utmost precipitation.
By all the three evangelists we are assured, that after the loss of the swine, and the cure of the demoniacs, the Gadarenes besought our Lord “that he would depart out of their coasts." This I have twice, in the Supplement to vol. I. Disc. I. ascribed to the carnal temper of these people; that being apprehensive of suffering in their worldly inter
On Monday (May 7.) as J- H-, Esq. was coming to town from his house at Carshalton in Surrey, in his post-chaise, the horses took fright, just by Newington church, and ran with such violence against a waggon, passing through the turnpike, that one of the horses was killed on the spot, and the other so much bruised, that he died in an hour afterwards, and the chaise was almost torn to pieces. But happily the gentleman received no hurt, and the dr.ver was but slightly bruised."-The General Evening Post, Thursday, May 10, 1759.
ests, instead of entreating Jesus to stay with them, a while at least, they joined together with much unanimity in beseeching him to depart out of their coasts.
Nor do I now say, that a sensual temper of mind had no influence on them, for producing that request. Nevertheless, perhaps, that alone was not the whole cause. I therefore would add as follows.
It is observable from divers instances in the Old Testament, that special and extraordinary manifestations of the Divine Presence were generally awful and affecting to the men to whom they were made, though the message was gracious. I refer not only to Ex. xx. 19, but also to ch. xxiv. 30, and Judges vi. 22, and xiii. 22. See likewise Ex. xxxiii. 20.
There are likewise instances in the New Testament. How comfortable the tidings! Luke ii. 8-15. Yet it is said of the shepherds, ver. 9, " And they were sore afraid." And Luke v. 8-10, "When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord. For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the draught of the fishes which they had taken. And so were also James and John, the sons of Zebedee.And Jesus said unto Simon: Fear not, henceforth thou shalt catch men." Upon another occasion, Mark iv. 41," And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another: What manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him!" Compare Luke viii. 25. And on the mount. Matt. xvii. 6, 7, "And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their face, and were sore afraid." Compare Mark ix. 6, and
Luke ix. 34.
Let us now observe what is said of the Gadarenes. Mark v. 15, " And they (meaning the people of the neighbouring town and country) come to Jesus, and see him that was possessed with the devil, and had the legion, sitting and clothed, and in his right mind; and they were afraid." To the like purpose exactly in Luke viii. 35. And at ver. 37, it is said: Then the whole multitude of the country of the Gadarenes round about besought him to depart from them; for they were taken with great fear."
If Peter desired our Lord" to depart from him, because he was a sinful man:" if he, and the rest, were at other times so astonished that they knew not what to say nor what to think of themselves; though all the great works which they had seen performed by him were healing and beneficial; well might the people of this country be struck with awe at the sight of the man called Legion," sitting,
and clothed, and in his right mind." For it was a work of Divine Power and a token of the Divine Presence. And, very probably, they thought themselves unqualified for the residence of so great and holy a person among them.
At their request our Lord departed, and took ship, and returned to the place whence he had come; well knowing that many there were in earnest expectation of him.
But though our Lord himself staid no longer with the Gadarenes, he left there the man whom he had cured. "He prayed, that be night be with him. However Jesus suffered him not. But saith unto him; Go home to thy friends, and tell them, how great things the Lord hath done for thee. And he departed, and began to publish in Decapolis, how great things Jesus had done for him. And all men did marvel." And it is not an unreasonable, nor an improbable supposition, that some of that country did afterwards come over into Galilee or Judea to see Jesus, that they might receive benefit from his great wisdom, or great power.
PAGE 106. Diss. xxviii. Who those Greeks were, who 'desired to see Jesus? And whether they were admitted?' John xii. 20, 21.
Dr. Ward well observes, at p. 107, The greater part of Syria was in our Saviour's time called Greece by the Jews. Hence, when he was in the borders of Tyre and Sidon, and a woman besought him to cast the evil spirit out of her daughter, she is called "a Greek, a Syrophenician by 'nation," Mark vii. 26. And these Greeks who were de'sirous to see Jesus, were, probably, of the same nation, and known to Philip, who is here said to have been of Bethsaida of Galilee.'
The same observation is in Grotius upon this text. And I had occasion some while ago, in considering another text,
say: 'It was common with all authors about that time, to call the people, who inhabited the cities of Asia and 'Syria, Greeks."
Videntur autem hi Gentiles fuisse Syrophonices. Nam alibi notavimus, Marci vii. 26, 'EXŋvida vocari, quæ aliis est Syrophonista. Et his ob vicinitatem facilior notitia cum Galilæis Bethsaïdensibus, quod illi forte in partes Tyri et Sidonis excurrebant. Grot. ad Joh. xii. 20.
b See Vol. v. ch. xi. num. vii. note ".