verted; but, in disputable places, I love to take what I can best | English editor of Calmet's Dictionary of the Bible. According to his hypcthesis verses 5-9. of 1 John v. stood thus in the two editions:understand."

2. At the seventh verse, the three that bear record are manifestly persons, and the words that express two of them are masculine nouns, Harp (THE FATHER), and Ayes (THE WORD); whence we may naturally expect that the adjuncts, or adjectives which allude to them, would all be of the masculine gender likewise: consequently we find the heavenly witnesses to be denoted by the words Tpas &σw ci μaρTUрouvres (there are three that bear record).

Thus far, all is conformable to the rules of plain grammar. Besides, it cannot be difficult to conceive that the sacred writer, when about to express the earthly witnesses in the next verse, might carry on the same expression or adjuncts to that verse; and the correspondence in the number of witnesses, and the similarity of their design in bearing witness to the truth of the religion of Christ, may tend to confirm this sentiment. But if the former verse did not precede, and should be rejected as spurious, it will be difficult to account for the use of the masculine gender; and we should rather be inclined to suspect that the words would have been a ova μapтupovτa, as all the terms that follow to denote the earthly energies, or attestations, are every one of the neuter gender. It appears, then, that the turn of the language, as well as the nature of the witnesses, would require the use of this gender; and therefore the accuracy of the construction, or the strict rules of grammar, must favour the present text.2

3. Bishop Middleton has a long and elaborate dissertation, the design of which is to show that the article TO before Ev Bow in the eighth verse must necessarily refer to the word EN in the preceding verse, and consequently that both verses must be retained, or both rejected.3

This argument is not of a nature to admit of abridgment; but, in order to be strictly correct, there should be an identity in the subject, and not a similarity only. A doubt may be reasonably entertained, whether, in the language of St. John, TO 'EN is not used as equivalent to TO ATTO, as it is in Phil. ii. 2.; in which case no reference to any preceding expression would be applied, To this we may add, that if the Vulgate preserves the true reading, the translators must have supposed the EIX TO 'EN of the 8th verse to be equivalent to the 'EN of the 7th; for all the manuscripts, which retain the concluding clause of the 8th verse (a very large portion of them omitting it), read tres unum sunt, as in the 7th verse.4

4. The mode of thinking and diction is peculiar to St. John. No other evangelist or apostle speaks of the witness of the Father or the Holy Spirit, as he does in his Gospel; and no other evangelist or apostle calls the Son of God the WORD.

This argument has been strenuously urged by Kettner, Bengel, and other zealous advocates for the disputed clause. But, on the other hand, it is contended that there is no such identical expression in the whole Bible besides; and it is not strictly correct that no other evangelist calls the Son of God the WORD, because, as we have already seen,6 that appellation is expressly applied to Jesus Christ by Saint Luke. (i. 2.)

Who is he that overcometh

the world, unless it be one who
believes that Jesus is the Son of
God? This is he who came by
water and blood; Jesus the
Christ: not by water only, but
by water and blood: but the
spirit is that which beareth wit
ness. They which bear wit-
ness, then, are these three; the
spirit, and the water, and the
blood, and these are combined
in one. If we receive the wit-
ness of men, the witness of God
is greater; and assuredly this
is the witness of God, which is
witnessed of his Son, &c.

Who is he that overcometh the world,

unless it be one who believes that Jesus is
the Son of God? This is he who came by
water and blood; Jesus the Christ; not
by water only, but by water and blood
but the spirit is that which beareth wit-
ness. They which bear witness then on
earth, are these three; the spirit, and the
water, and the blood; and these three are
combined in one. Correspondently, those
who bear witness in heaven, are three;
the Father, and the Word, and the Holy
Spirit; and these three are the ONE. If
we receive the witness of men, the wit-
ness of God is greater, and assuredly
this is the witness of God which is wit

nessed of his Son.

this it is to withhold the praise of but it cannot be admitted as positive evidence in determining the genuineness of the disputed clause, from the total absence of historical or even traditionary testimony to support it.

(2.) The great havoc and destruction of the ancient copies of the Greek Testament, in the Dioclesian persecution especially, which raged throughout the Roman empire, as far as Britain, but was lighter in Africa, probably occasioned a scarcity of ancient Greek copies; and left the remnant more open to adulteration, either from the negligence of transcribers, or the fraud of heretics; especially during the prevalence of the Arian heresy in the Greek church, for forty years, after the death of Constantine the Great (particularly during the reign of Constantius), until the accession of Theodosius

the Great.

That such an adulteration of the sacred text might take place, is within the verge of possibility. It is, however, all but morally impossible that it could take place without detection; for how is it possible that the Arians could conspire all the world over, at once, in the latter end of Constantius's reign, to get into their possession all the copies of the New Tes tament then in being, and correct them throughout, without being perceived? And that they should accomplish this in such a way as to leave no blot or chasm in such copies, by which the fraud might be suspected or discovered; further, that they should succeed in so utterly effacing the very memory of it, that neither Athanasius nor any other of their contemcould afterwards remember that had ever before seen it in their sacred books; and, finally, that they should erase it out of their own copies, so that when they turned to the consubstantial faith (as they generally did in the western empire soon after the death of Constantius), they could remember no more of it than any other person.

(3.) The Arians might have designedly expunged it, as being inimical to their doctrine.

The charge of having expunged this passage has been brought against the Arians only in modern times; but it is indignantly repelled by Dr. Mill (an advocate for the disputed clause), Arians expunge these words, which were out already, one hundred and fifty years before Arius was born? To which we may add that it is utterly incredible that the orthodox should have been so careless, as to have allowed the Arians to get possession of all their copies, for the purpose of expunging the words in question.

(4.) The orthodox themselves might have designedly withdrawn it out of regard to the mystery of the Trinity, under the persuasion that such a passage as 1 John v. 7. ought not to be exposed to every reader.

5. Further, those critics who advocate the genuineness of this text, observe that omissions in ancient manuscripts, versions, and authors, are neither absolute contradictions, nor direct impeachments of facts. They only supply food for conjecture, and conjectural criticism ought to be sparingly and cautiously applied before it can be admitted as sufficient authority for altering the received text. Besides, the omis-him a sum of money, that on being asked by the magistrate, whether I had sion in the present case may be satisfactorily accounted for, from various circumstances. Thus,

(1.) There may have been Two editions of this Epistle, in the first of which the disputed clause was omitted, but is retained in the second or later edition.

Without examining the strength or weakness of this and the preceding reason, Michaelis observes, that such causes, though they might have produced the omission of the passage in some copies, could not possibly have occasioned it in all the ancient Greek manuscripts, and in all the ancient versions, except the Latin. Besides, they are wholly foreign to the present purpose: they do not tend to show the authenticity of 1 John v. 7. but account merely for its omission, on the previous supposition that it is authentic. But this is the thing to be proved. And it is surely absurd to has been shown that the Epistle ever contained it. "Suppose," he conaccount for the omission of a passage in Saint John's first Epistle before it tinues, "I were to cite a man before a court of justice, and demand from indeed no bond to produce, but that a bond might have been very easily any bond to produce in support of the demand, I answered, that I had lost during the troubles of the late war. In this case, if the magistrate should admit the validity of the demand, and oblige the accused party to pay the sum required, every man would conclude not so much that he was unjust, as that his mental faculties were deranged. But is not this case similar to the case of those who contend that 1 John v. 7. is genuine, because it might have been lost? In fact, their situation is still worse, of one and the same passage in more than eighty manuscripts."s (5.) The negligence of transcribers may have caused the omission of the disputed clause. The seventh verse begins in the same manner as the eighth; and therefore the transcribers might easily have overlooked the seventh verse, and consequently have omitted it by accident.

This hypothesis was first announced by the late Mr. Charles Taylor, the since the loss of a single manuscript is much more credible than the loss

Sir Isaac Newton's Hist. of Two Texts. Works, vol. v. pp. 528, 529.
2 Classical Journal, vol. ii. pp. 869-871. See also Mr. Nolan's Inquiry,
pp. 260. 304.

See Bishop Middleton on the Greek Article, pp. 633-653.
Quarterly Review, vol. xxvi. p. 330.

In support of the above argument, Bishop Burgess refers to John v. 31 -37. viii. 13. and xv. 26. ; and before him. Griesbach (who gives up the disputed passage as spurious) had candidly said, that John here refers to Christ's discourse in John v. 31-39., compared with John viii. 13. 18.; and adds, that when Jesus Christ had there taught, the apostle wished to prove to his readers by the same arguments; which being the case, the seventh verse (it is inferred) could not be wanting. Bp. Burgess's Vindication, p. 115. 2d edit.

c See p. 311. note 2. of the present volume.

Calmet's Dictionary, vol. iv. (4th edit.) pp 281-238. Fragment, no.


The following illustration will enable the reader who understands no other language but English, readily to apprehend how the words came to be omitted:

The word which in the seventh verse is rendered bear record, and in the eighth bear witness, is the same in Greek (of upтupouvтe;); and if it had Hewlett's Commentary, vol. v. p. 508. 8vo. edit. • Michaelis's Introduction, vol. iv. p. 434.

been translated in both verses alike, as it ought to have been, the two | the fourteenth or fifteenth century, at which time the majority of the comverses would have run thus:


Now, how easy it is, for one who is transcribing, and perhaps in haste, to slip his eye from the words THERE ARE THREE THAT BEAR WITNESS in the 7th verse, to the same words THERE ARE THREE THAT BEAR WITNESS in the 8th verse any person may easily conceive who has been accustomed to transcribing himself, or who has ever read and observed the transcripts of others, or has been much employed in correcting the press. Similar omissions frequently occur in Mill's and Griesbach's critical editions of the New Testament. For where the beginning and ending of two sentences, within a line or two, happen to be alike, the copyists so frequently omit the former, that if the text under dispute had been found in all the manuscripts and copies, we should have had a great deal more reason to wonder than we have now, that it appears in so few. Let it be granted, therefore, that an omission of the intermediate words might naturally happen; yet still, the appearing of the omission, both early and wide, proves no more than that the words happened to be early dropped, and overlooked in some still more early copy. It might be dropped, for any thing we know, out of a copy taken immediately from the original of Saint John himself. And then, most assuredly, all future transcripts, mediately or immediately derived from that copy, must continue, at least, as imperfect and faulty as that first copy itself. And if there should have been but few copies taken from the original in all (and who will pretend to say how many were really taken ?), it is no wonder that while some churches, as those, for instance, in Africa and Europe (whither the perfect copies had been carried), had the true reading, other churches in Asia and the East, from an imperfect copy, should transmit an imperfect reading.

(6.) Several of the early fathers may have designedly omitted to quote the clause in question, from considering it as a proof of the unity of the testimony of the heavenly witnesses to the Messiahship of Christ, and not of the unity of their nature, and consequently not relevant to the controversies in which those writers were engaged.

(7.) The silence of several of the earlier Greek fathers is no proof at all that their copies of the Greek Testament wanted the clause in question; since in their controversies they have omitted to quote other texts referring to the doctrine of the Trinity, with which other parts of their writings show that they must have been well acquainted. Besides, the silence of several of the fathers is more than compensated by the total silence of all the heretics or false teachers, at least from the days of Praxeas (in the second century), who never charged the orthodox fathers of being guilty of interpolation.

Let us now briefly recapitulate the evidence on this much litigated question.

I. AGAINST the genuineness of the disputed clause, it is urged, that

1. It is not to be found in a single Greek manuscript, written before the sixteenth century.

2. It is wanting in the earliest and best critical editions of the Greek Testament.

3. It is contained in the manuscripts of no other ancient version besides the Latin; and

4. Not all the manuscripts even of the Latin version contain

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5. It is not once quoted in the genuine works of any one of the Greek fathers, or early ecclesiastical writers, even in those places where we should most expect it.

6. It is not once quoted by any of the Latin fathers, even where the subject of which they were treating required; and where, consequently, we should expect to see it cited.

7. The Protestant Reformers either rejected it, or at least marked it as doubtful.-On the other hand,

II. In BEHALF of the genuineness of the disputed clause, it

is contended, that

(1.) External Evidence.

1. It is found in the Latin version which was current in Africa before the Latin Vulgate version was made, and also in most manuscripts of the Vulgate version.

But the authority of these manuscripts is justly to be suspected, on account of the many alterations and corruptions which the Vulgate version has undergone.

2. It is found in the Confession of Faith, and Liturgy of the Greek church.

3. It is found in the Primitive Liturgy of the Latin church. But it is very probable that the clause in question was interpolated from the Liturgy of the Latin church into that of the Greek church by some of the Greek clergy, who were devoted partisans of the Romish church, in

mon people, from the ignorance which at that time generally prevailed throughout Europe, were incapable of detecting the imposition.

4. It is cited by numerous Latin fathers.

The contrary is maintained by the antagonists of the disputed clause and in pp. 371-373. we have shown that the authorities of Tertullian, Cyprian, Jerome, and the African bishops, which have principally been relied on, are inapplicable to prove the point for which they have been adduced.

(2.) Internal Evidence.

1. The connection of the disputed clause requires its insertion, inasmuch as the sense is not perfect without it.

This argument is rebutted by the fact that the context admits of an exposition, which makes the sense complete without the disputed clause.

2. The grammatical structure of the original Greek requires the insertion of the seventh verse, and consequently that it should be received as genuine.

Otherwise the latter part of the eighth verse, the authenticity of which manuscript that is extant), must likewise be rejected. was never questioned (as indeed it cannot be, being found in every known

3. The doctrine of the Greek article, which is found in both verses, is such, that both must be retained, or both must be rejected.

4. The mode of thinking and diction is peculiar to St. John. To this it is replied, that there is no such identical expression in the

whole Bible, besides l'John v. 7.


5. The omission of this clause may be satisfactorily accounted Thus

(1.) There may have been two editions of this epistle, in the first of which the disputed clause was omitted, though it is retained in the second.

(2.) The great scarcity of ancient Greek copies, caused by the persecutions of the Christians by the Roman emperors, would leave the rest open to the negligence of copyists or to the frauds of false teachers.

(3.) The Arians might have designedly expunged it, as being inimical to their doctrine. (4) The orthodox themselves might have designedly withdrawn it out of regard to the mystery of the Trinity.

(5.) The negligence of transcribers is a cause of other omissions. (6.) Several of the fathers may have designedly omitted the clause in question.

(7.) The silence of several of the Greek fathers is no proof that their copies of the Greek Testament wanted the clause in question; since, in their controversies respecting the Trinity, they have omitted to quote other texts with which they must have been well acquainted. Upon a review of all the preceding arguments, the disputed clause (we think) must be abandoned as spurious; nor can any thing less than the positive authority of unsuspected manuscripts justify the admission of so important a passage into the sacred canon. Much stress, it is true, has been laid upon some points in the internal evidence, and particularly the supposed grammatical arguments (Nos. 2. and 3.), and the reasons assigned for the omission of this clause." Bu some of these reasons have been shown to be destitute of the support alleged in their behalf; and the remainder are wholly hypothetical, and unsustained by any satisfactory evidence. "Internal evidence," indeed (as Bishop Marsh forcibly argues), "may show that a passage is spurious, though external evidence is in its favour; for instance, if it contain allusions to things which did not exist in the time of the reputed author. BUT NO INTERNAL EVIDENCE CAN PROVE


DECIDEDLY AGAINST IT. A spurious passage may be fitted to the context as well as a genuine passage. No arguments, therefore, from internal evidence, however ingenious they may appear, can outweigh the mass of external evidence which applies to the case in question."

But, although the disputed clause is confessedly spurious, its absence neither does nor can diminish the weight of IRRE-SISTIBLE EVIDENCE which other undisputed passages of Holy Writ afford to the doctrine of the Trinity. The proofs of our Lord's true and proper Godhead remain unshakendeduced from the prophetic descriptions of the Messiah's

1 Bp. Marsh's Lectures, part vi. p. 27. Bishop Burgess has argued, at when the external evidence is decidedly against a passage. (Vindication, considerable length, in favour of the superiority of internal evidence, even pp. xxix. xxxiv.) His arguments are minutely considered, and (it must, we think, be admitted) set aside, by Crito Cantabrigiensis. (Vindication of Mr. Porson's Literary Character, pp. 75-84.)

2 On this subject the reader is referred to a small volume by the author of this work, entitled, The Scripture Doctrine of the Trinity briefly stated and defended, &c. (Second edition, 12mo., London, 1826.) In the appendix to that volume he has exhibited the very strong collateral testimony, furnished to the scriptural evidence of this doctrine, by the actual profession of faith in, and worship of, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit, as well as of God the Father, by the Christian church in every age; together with other documents illustrative of this important truth of divine revelation, derived from ecclesiastical history and the writings of the fathers of the first threa centuries of the Christian era

person in the Old Testament from the ascription to him of the attributes, the works, and the homage, which are peculiar to the Deity and from those numerous and important relations, which he is affirmed in Scripture to sustain towards his holy and universal church, and towards each of its true members. "There are," to adopt the deliberate judgment of Griesbach, "so many arguments for the true Deity of Christ, that I see not how it can be called in question; the divine authority of Scripture being granted, and just rules of interpretation acknowledged. The exordium of Saint John's Gospel, in particular, is so perspicuous and above all exception, that it NEVER can be overturned by the daring attacks of interpreters and critics, and taken away from the defenders of the




I. Genuineness, authenticity, and date of these Epistles.-II. The second Epistle, to whom addressed.-III. Its scope.IV. The third Epistle, to whom addressed.-V. Its scope. -VI. Observations on this Epistle.

I. ALTHOUGH, in the fourth century, when Eusebius wrote his ecclesiastical history, these two Epistles were classed among the AvTusa or books which were received by the majority of Christians (though some doubts were entertained by others respecting their authenticity), yet testimonies are not wanting to prove that they were both known and received as genuine productions of the apostle John. The second Epistle is cited by Irenæus, and received by Clement of Alexandria. Origen mentions all three Epistles, though he says that the second and third were not allowed to be genuine by all persons. Dionysius of Alexandria mentions them as being ascribed to St. John. The second Epistle was quoted by Alexander bishop of Alexandria; and all three Epistles were received by Athanasius, by Cyril of Jerusalem, by Epiphanius, Jerome (a few of whose contemporaries doubted the authenticity of these Epistles), Rufinus, and almost every subsequent writer of note.2 They are not, indeed, received in the Syrian churches; but the thoughts and style are so similar to those of the first Epistle, that almost all critics attribute them to the author of the first Epistle, namely, John; and they were, in all probability, written about the same time as that Epistle, viz. A. D. 68 or 69. Consequently these Epistles could not have been written by John the elder, a member of the Ephesian church, as some of the fathers, and also some modern critics, have imagined. Various reasons have been assigned why these two Epistles were not received earlier into the canon. Michaelis is disposed to think that doubt was excited concerning their genuineness by the address, in which the author neither calls himself John, nor assumes the title of an apostle, but simply names himself the "elder" (TTBUTps); as Saint Peter (I. ch. v. 1.) styles himself a "fellow elder" (σμBUTES), which title, after Peter's death, the apostle John might with great propriety assume, as being the only remaining apostle. It is, however, most probable that, being letters to private persons, they had for a considerable time been kept in the possession of the families to whom they were originally sent, and were not discovered till long after the apostle's decease, and after the death of the persons to whom they had been addressed. When first discovered, all the immediate vouchers for their genuineness were necessarily gone; and the church of Christ, ever on its guard against imposture, particularly in relation to writings professing to be the work of apostles, hesitated to receive them into the number of canonical Scriptures, until it was fully ascertained that they were divinely inspired.

II. Considerable uncertainty prevails respecting the person to whom the second Epistle was addressed, some conjecturing

1 Atque sunt profecto tam multa et luculenta argumenta et Scripturæ loca, quibus vera Deitas Christo vindicatur, ut ego quidem intelligere vix possim quomodo, concessâ Scripturæ Sacræ divinâ auctoritate et admissis justis interpretandi regulis, dogma hoc in dubium à quoquam vocari posse. In primis locus ille, Joh. i. 1, 2, 3., tam perspicuus est, atque omnibus exceptionibus major, ut neque interpretum, neque criticorum audacibus conatibus UNQUAM everti atque veritatis defensoribus eripi possit. Nov. Test. tom. ii. Præf. pp. viii. ix. Halæ, 1775.

See the references to the above-named fathers in Dr. Lardner's Works, 8vo. vol. vi. pp. 584-586.; 4to. vol. iii. pp. 525, 526. Dr. Mill, and after him Dr. Lardner, observe, that, of the thirteen verses composing the second Epistle, eight are to be found in the first either in sense or in expression.

a particular person to be intended, while others understand it figuratively, as of the church. The ancient commentators supposed it to be figurative, but most of the modern commentators and critics understand it literally, though they do not agree in their literal interpretation. Archbishop Newcome, Wakefield, Macknight, and the venerable translators of our authorized version, make ExλT to be an adjective, and render the inscription "To the elect (or excellent, or chosen) Lady;" the Vulgate version, Calmet, and others, consider ExλET to be a proper name, and translate it "To the Lady Electa;" J. B. Carpzov, Schleusner, and Rosenmüller take Kup to be a proper name, and the Epistle to be addressed to Cyria, or Kyria, the Elect, and Michaelis conjectures Kupa to be an ellipsis of Kupa Exxanoa, which, among the ancient Greeks, signified an assembly of the people held at a stated time, and was held at Athens three times in every month; and that, since the sacred writers adopted the term Exx fron its civil use among the Greeks, Κυρια Εκκλησιa might here mean the stated assembly of the Christians, held every Sunday; and thus тn exλти up, with xxxx understood, would signify, "To the elect church or community which comes together on Sundays." He admits, however, that he knows does not think that this explanation can be very easily estanot of any instance of such ellipsis; and Bishop Middleton blished. Of these various hypotheses, the most probable opinion is that which considers the Epistle as addressed to the Lady Electa, who is supposed to have been an eminent Christian matron: what confirms this opinion is, that the Greek article is absent, which would have been absolutely necessary if the inscription had been "To the elect Lady," or to "Kyria the Elect."

III. The SECOND EPISTLE of John is an epitome of the first, and touches, in few words, on the same points. The "Lady Electa" is commended for her virtuous and religious education of her children; and is exhorted to abide in the doctrine of Christ, to persevere in the truth, and carefully to avoid the delusions of false teachers. But chiefly the apostle beseeches this Christian matron to practise the great and indispensable commandment of Christian love and charity.

IV. The THIRD EPISTLE of John is addressed to a converted Gentile, a respectable member of some Christian church, called Caius; but who he was is extremely uncertain, as there are three persons of this name mentioned in the New Testament, viz. 1. Gaius of Corinth (1 Cor. i. 14.); whom Paul calls his "host, and the host of the whole church" (Rom. xvi. 23.); 2. Gaius, a native of Macedonia, who accompanied Paul, and spent some time with him at Ephesus (Acts xix. 29.); 3. Caius of Derbe (Acts xx. 4.), who also was a fellow-traveller of Paul. Michaelis and most modern critics suppose the person to whom this Epistle was addressed to be the Caius of Corinth, as hospitality was a leading feature in his character. His hospitable temper, particularly towards the ministers of the Gospel, is strongly marked in the fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth verses of this Epistle.

V. The Scope of this Epistle is to commend his steadfastness in the faith and his general hospitality, especially to the ministers of Christ; to caution him against the ambitious and turbulent practices of Diotrephes, and to recommend Demetrius to his friendship; referring what he further had to say to a personal interview.

VI. Commentators are by no means agreed who this Diotrephes was. Bede, Erasmus, Michaelis, and others, suppose him to have been the author of a new sect, and that, as he delivered false doctrines, he objected to those who propagated the true faith. Grotius, Le Clerc, and Beausobre imagined that he was a Gentile convert who would not receive Jewish Christians. But it is most probable that he was an ambitious elder or bishop in the church of which Gaius was a member, and that, having been converted from Judaism, he opposed the admission of the Gentiles, and set himself up as the head of a party in opposition to the apostles. If (as we sup pose) the Gaius to whom this Epistle was addressed was the generous "host of the church at Corinth," it is possible that this Diotrephes might have been the leading opponent of Saint Paul in that city, whom he forbore to name out of delicacy, though he censured his conduct. See 1 Cor. iii, 35. iv. 6., &c.

Demetrius, who is so highly commended by the apostle in

4 As the Syriac name Martha is of the same import as Kups, Carpzov conjectured that this epistle was addressed to the sister of Lazarus, and that she changed her name from Martha to Kyria or Cyria, after the persecution of the church which followed the martyrdom of Stephen, for the security of her person. The conjecture is ingenious, but is not supported bany authority. Epist. Cath. Septenarius, p. 185

this Epistle, is thought to have held some sacred office in the church of which Gaius was a member; but this opinion is rejected by Dr. Benson, because on that supposition Gaius must have known him so well, as to need no information concerning his character from the apostle. He therefore believed him to have been the bearer of this letter, and one of the brethren who went forth to preach to the Gentiles. With this conjecture Rosenmüller coincides. Calmet supposes that he was a member of the same church as Gaius, whose piety and hospitality he imitated. But whoever Demetrius was, his character and deportment were the reverse of the character and conduct of Diotrephes; for the apostle speaks of the former as having a good testimony from all men, and whose temper and behaviour were in every respect conformable to the precepts of the Gospel, and therefore Saint John recommends him as an example to Gaius, and the other members of the church to which he belonged.'



I. Account of the author.-II. Genuineness and authenticity. III. Date.-IV. Of the persons to whom this Epistle was addressed.-V. Its occasion and scope.-VI. Observations on its style.

I. JUDE or Judas, who was surnamed Thaddeus and Lebbeus, and was also called the brother of our Lord (Matt. xiii. 55.), was the son of Alpheus, brother of James the Less, and one of the twelve apostles. We are not informed when or how he was called to the apostleship; and there is scarcely any mention of him in the New Testament, except in the different catalogues of the twelve apostles. The only particular incident related concerning Jude is to be found in John xiv. 21-23.; where we read that he addressed the following question to his Divine Master-Lord! how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world? Full of ideas of temporal grandeur and universal monarchy, he could not imagine how our Saviour could establish a kingdom without manifesting it to the world;-a proof how much this apostle was actuated by Jewish prejudices, and what delusive hopes he cherished, in common with all the other apostles, of soon beholding his Master erect a powerful and magnificent empire.

the ancient catalogues of the sacred writings of the New Testament: it is asserted to be genuine by Clement of Alexandria, and is quoted as Jude's production by Tertullian, by Origen, and by the greater part of the ancients noticed by Eusebius.3 Independently of this external evidence, the genuineness of the Epistle of Jude is confirmed by the subjects discussed in it, which are in every respect suitable to the character of an apostle of Jesus Christ; for the writer's design was, to characterize and condemn the false teachers, who endeavoured in that age to make proselytes to their erroneous and dangerous tenets, to reprobate the impious doctrines which they taught for the sake of advantage, and to enforce the practice of holiness on all who professed the Gospel. In short, as Dr. Macknight most truly observes, there is no error taught, no evil practice enjoined, for the sake of which any impostor could be induced to impose a forgery of this kind upon the world.

With regard to the objection against the genuineness of this Epistle, which is derived from the supposed quotation by Jude of an apocryphal book of Enoch, it is to be observed, that the apostle, by quoting such book, gives it no authority. It was no canonical book of the Jews; and though such a book existed among them, and was apocryphal, yet it might contain some things that were true. Jude's quoting from it the prophecy under consideration would not lessen the authe heathen poets Aratus (Acts xvii. 28.), Menander (1 Cor. thority of his Epistle, any more than Paul's quotations from xv. 33.), and Epimenides (Tit. i. 12.), have lessened the authority of the history of the Acts, and of that apostle's letters, where these quotations are found. The reason is (as Macknight most forcibly observes), if the things contained in these quotations were true in themselves, they might be mentioned by an inspired writer without giving authority to the poems from which they were cited. In like manner, if the prophecy ascribed to Enoch, concerning the future judg ment and punishment of the wicked, was agreeable to the other declarations of God respecting that event, Jude might cite it, because Enoch (who, like Noah, was a preacher of righteousness) might actually have delivered such a prophecy, though it is not recorded in the Old Testament; and because his quoting it did not establish the authority of the book whence he took it, if he took it from any book extant in his time. The preceding observations have been made on the supposition that the apostle did quote an apocryphal book of Enoch: but it has been remarked with equal force and truth, that it is incredible that Jude cited a book then extant, claiming to be the prophecies of Enoch: for, had it been genuine, the Divine Spirit would not surely have suffered his own word to be afterwards lost; and, had it been apocryphal, the inspired apostle would not have stamped it with his authority, and have declared it to have been the production of Enoch, the seventh from Adam.' Indeed, the language of Jude by no means implies that he quoted from any book whatever (a circumstance which most writers on this controverted subject have mistaken); and hence some persons have come to the highly improbable conclusion that the prophetic words attributed to Enoch were communicated to the apostle by immediate revelation. But this conclusion is not more improbable than it is unnecessary. There is yet another source, from which this insulated passage might have been derived. There is nothing to forbid, but much to establish, the supposition, that some historical facts, omitted in the Hebrew Scriptures, were handed down by the uninspired authors of the Jewish nation. Although it is true that, in the most ancient remains of Hebrew literature, history is so obscured by fable as to be altogether an uncertain guide, yet some truth doubtless exists in this 1 Michaelis, vol. iv. pp. 442-456. Lardner, Svo. vol. vi. pp. 584-607.; 4to. mass of fiction. This observation may be applied with vol. iii. pp. 425-437. Benson on the Catholic Epistles, pp. 663-680. Buddei greater force to the Jewish records which existed in the Ecclesia Apostolica, pp. 314-316. Dr. Hales's Analysis of Chronology, vol. ii. book ii. pp. 1150-1152. Bishop Middleton on the Greek Article, pp. 653 apostolic age. We know, indeed, from the highest authority, -656. (first edition.) Lampe, in Evang. Joannis, tom. i. pp. 111-115. Pritii, that the Jewish doctors of that period had made the word of Introd. in Nov. Test. pp. 109, 110. It is more certain that Jude was a married man, and had children; for God of none effect by their traditions;' but still their uninEusebius relates, on the authority of the ecclesiastical historian Hegesip-spired records must have contained some authentic narratives. pus (a converted Jew, who flourished in the second century), that the From such a source we may rationally suppose that Jude emperor Domitian, in a fit of jealousy, ordered inquiry to be made con gathered the traditional antediluvian prophecy of Enoch, of on of the grandchildren of Jude were brought before him. The emperor, first asking them under the direction of that infallible Spirit, who preserved several questions respecting their profession and manner of life, which the inspired writers from error, and guided them into all was husbandry, next inquired concerning the kingdom of Christ, and when truth. We conclude, therefore, that the apostle did NOT it should appear? To this they replied, that it was a heavenly and spiritual, not a temporal kingdom; and that it would not be manifested till the end of quote from any book extant in his day purporting to have the world. Domitian, thus finding that they were mean persons and per- been written by Enoch."4 fectly harmless, dismissed them unbound, and by edict appeased the persecution which had been raised against the church. Hegesippus adds, that, on their release, the grandchildren of Jude afterwards presided over churches, both as being martyrs (more correctly confessors), and also as being allied to our Lord. Euseb. Hist. Eccl. lib. iii. cc. 19 20 3 B

As Jude continued with the rest of the apostles after our Lord's resurrection and ascension (Acts i. 13.), and was with them on the day of Pentecost (ii. 1.), it is not unreasonable to suppose, that after having received the extraordinary gifts of the Holy Spirit, he preached the Gospel for some time in Judæa, and performed miracles in the name of Christ. And as his life seems to have been prolonged, it is probable that he afterwards quitted Judæa, and preached the Gospel to Jews and Gentiles, in other countries. It has been said that he preached in Arabia, Syria, Mesopotamia, and Persia, and that he suffered martyrdom in the last mentioned country. The Syrians still claim him as their apostle; but we have no account of his travels upon which we can rely, and it may even be questioned whether he was a martyr.2

11. In the early ages of Christianity the Epistle of Jude was rejected by several persons, because the apocryphal books of Enoch, and of the Ascension of Moses, were supposed to be quoted in it; and Michaelis has rejected it as spurious. We have, however, the most satisfactory evidences of the authenticity of this Epistle. It is found in all


See the passages of the above-named writers in Dr. Lardner's Works 8vo. vol. vi. pp. 613-618.; 4to. vol. iii. pp. 440-443. Christian Observer, July, 1829, vol. xxix. p. 417.

The foregoing remarks apply with equal force to verse 9., | dispersion. Moldenhawer was of opinion, that it was in which the apostle is supposed to cite an apocryphal rela- inscribed to the Eastern churches, among whom the apostle tion or tradition concerning the archangel Michael's disputing had probably laboured. But, from the inscription,2 Drs. with Satan for the body of Moses. This is by some writers Lardner and Macknight, Bishop Tomline and Dr. A. Clarke, referred to a book called the " Assumption or Ascension of concur in thinking that it was written to all, without disChrist," which in all probability was a forgery much later tinction, who had embraced the Gospel. The only reason, than the time of Jude; but Dr. Lardner thinks it much more Dr. Macknight remarks, which has induced commentators credible that the apostle alludes to the vision in Zech. iii. to suppose that Jude wrote to the Jewish believers alone, is, 1-3.; and this opinion is adopted and elucidated by Dr. that he makes use of arguments and examples taken from the Macknight in his note on the verse in question. In further sacred books of the Jews. But Paul, we have seen, followed illustration of this verse, we may remark, that it was a the same course when writing to the Gentiles; and both Jewish maxim, that "it is not lawful for man to prefer igno- apostles did so with propriety, not only because all who minious reproaches, even against wicked spirits." Might embraced the Gospel acknowledged the authority of the not the apostle, then, have used it merely as a popular illus-Jewish Scriptures, but also because it was of the greatest tration (without vouching for the fact) of that sober and importance to make the Gentiles sensible that the Gospel wholesome doctrine, not to speak evil of dignities? from the was in perfect unison with the ancient revelation. example of the archangel, who did not venture to rail even at Satan, but meekly said, "The LORD rebuke thee!" The hypothesis, that Jude copied the prophecy of Enoch from the writings of Zoroaster (which some continental critics have imagined) is too absurd to deserve a serious refutaIII. The time and place, when and where this Epistle was written, are extremely uncertain. Dr. Mill fixes its date to the year 90, principally because the false teachers, whom Peter describes as yet to come, are mentioned by Jude as already come. But on a comparison of this Epistle with the second of Peter, there does not appear to be such a remarkable difference in their phraseology as will be sufficient to prove that Jude wrote his Epistle so long after Peter's second Epistle as Dr. Mill supposed: though it proves, as most crítics agree, that it was written after the latter. The very great coincidence in sentiment and style between these two Epistles renders it likely that they were written about the same time; and, since we have seen that the second Epistle of Peter was in all probability written early in a. D. 65, we are induced with Lardner to place it towards the close of the same year, or perhaps in A. D. 66. Bishop Tomline, however, dates it in A. D. 70; Beausobre and L'Enfant, between A. D. 70 and 75; and Dodwell and Dr. Cave, in 71 or 72.


IV. There is much diversity of opinion concerning the persons to whom this Epistle was addressed. Estius and Witsius were of opinion that Jude wrote to Christians every where, but especially to the converted Jews. Dr. Hammond thought that the Epistle was directed to Jewish Christians alone, and with the design of guarding them against the errors of the Gnostics. Dr. Benson also thought that it was written to Jewish believers, especially to those of the Western

V. The design of this Epistle is, to guard believers against the false teachers who had begun to insinuate themselves into the Christian church; and to contend with the utmost earnestness and zeal for the true faith, against the dangerous tenets which they disseminated, resolving the whole of Christianity into a speculative belief and outward profession of the Gospel. And having thus cancelled the obligations of morality and personal holiness, they taught their disciples to live in all manner of licentiousness, and at the same time flattered them with the hope of divine favour, and of obtaining eternal life. The vile characters of these seducers are further shown, and their sentence is denounced; and the Epistle concludes with warnings, admonitions, and counsels to believers, how to persevere in faith and godliness themselves, and to rescue others from the snares of the false teachers.

VI. There is very great similarity between the Epistle of Jude and the second chapter of Peter's second Epistle, in subject, style, vehemence, and holy indignation against impudence and lewdness, and against those who insidiously undermine chastity, purity, and sound principles. The expressions are remarkably strong, the language is animated, and the figures and comparisons are bold, apt, and striking. In the Epistle of Jude, particularly, there is an energy, a force, a grandeur of expression and style-an apparent labour for words and images, expressive enough to give the reader a just and adequate idea of the profligate characters he exposes; and the whole is admirably calculated to show how deeply the holy apostle was grieved at the scandalous immoralities of those who called themselves Christians, and with what fervour and courage he tore off the mask from these hypocrites, that the church and the world might see all the turpitude and deformity that lurked beneath it.3



I. Title.-II. The Genuineness of this Book shown, 1. From external Evidence; 2. From internal Characters.-III. Its Date.-IV. Occasion and Scope.-V. Synopsis of its Contents.-VI. Observations on this Book.

I. THE first three verses of the Apocalypse form its TITLE; calypse... iv Ev Пaтμw Tй vпow caro, which he beheld in but as this is inconvenient on account of its length, various the island Patmos; and in 26. (the Codex Wakianus 1. a shorter inscriptions are given in the Manuscripts and Ancient manuscript of the eleventh century, in the library of Christ's Versions. Thus, in C. or the Codex Ephrem it is termed College, Oxford), it is Inocu Xplotou Arroxanufis do Jura To Gency w Arronenfis Iwavvou, the Revelation of John; in the Codex Iavn, the Revelation of Jesus Christ given to John the Divine. Coislinianus 199. (17. of Griesbach's notation) .. TOU In the Syriac Version, in Bishop Walton's Polyglott, it is Fechoyou, of John the Divine; in B. a manuscript belonging to entitled the Revelation which was made by God to John the the monks of St. Basil at Rome (of the seventh century). Evangelist in the island [of] Patmos, into which he was thrown nu EvazzMOTOU, of John the Divine and Evangelist; in [or banished] by Nero Cæsar; and in the Arabic Version it 42. (Codex Pio-Vaticanus 150., of the twelfth century), is the Vision of John the Apostle and Evangelist, namely, the Αποκάλυψις Ιωάννου του αποστολου και Ευαγγελιστου, the Revelation | Apocalypse. None of these titles are of any authority; nor of John the Apostle and Evangelist; in 30. (Codex Guelpher- can any certain reason be assigned for giving the appellation bytanus XVI. 7. a manuscript of the twelfth or thirteenth of excyos, or the Divine, to the apostle and evangelist John. century), Αποκαλυψις του αγιου και ενδοξότατου αποστόλου και ευαγγελιστοῦ, παρθένου ηγαπημενού, επιστηθίου Ιωαννου Θεολόγου, the Revelation of the holy and most glorious apostle and evangelist, the beloved virgin who lay in the bosom [of Jesus Christ], John the Divine. In 16. (the Codex Uffenbachianus), it is the Apo

1 The reader will find an interesting account of the different hypotheses which critics have entertained concerning the prophecy of Enoch, mentioned by Jude, in Laurmann's Collectanea, sive Notæ Criticæ et Commentarius in Epistolam Judæ, pp. 137-173. 220-233. 8vo. Groninge, 1818. See also Calmet's Commentaire Littéral, tom. viii. pp. 1034-1010.

II. It is a remarkable circumstance, that the authenticity of this book was very generally, if not universally, acknowledged during the first two centuries, and yet in the third century it

2 To them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called........Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the coмMON salvation, &c. Jude 1. 3.

a Benson on the Catholic Epistles, pp. 437-448. Lardner's Works, 8vo. vol. vi. pp. 619-627.; 4to. vol. iii. pp. 443-447. Macknight's Preface to Jude. Blackwall's Sacred Classics, vol. i. pp. 304, 305. Pritii Introd. in Nov. Test. pp. 110-117.

Griesbach, and Dean Woodhouse, on Rev. i. 1. Pritii Introductio ad Lectionem Novi Testamenti, pp. 127, 128.

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