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ON THE GOSPEL BY SAINT JOHN.
$is. On Wednesday, or the fourth day of Passion-week, the chief priests | by Saint Luke in more animated language than is used by sv. on Thursday, or the fifth day of Passion-week, Judas covenants to either of the rest (xi
. 53.): “ They began vehemently to press betray Christ xxii
, 4-5); and Christ sends two disciples to prepare him with questions on many points." And, on another occas vi. On the Passorer-day.--that is, from Thursday evening to Friday filled with mudness. (vi. 11.). Lastly, in the moral instruc
sion, speaking of the same people, he says, that they were (a) In ihe evening, Christ'eats the Passover; institutes the Sacrament tions given by our Lord, and recorded by this evangelist, of the Lord's Supper; discourses on humility; and foretells his especially in the parables, no one has surpassed him in unit
bemg betrayed by Judas, his abandonnueni bý his disciples, and ing affecting sweetness of manner with genuine simplicity, (6) Towards night, after eating the Passover with his apostles, Jesus particularly in the parables of the benevolent Samaritan and
goes to the Mount of Olives; where, after being some time in an ihe penitent prodigal.3 agony, he is apprehended. (xxii. 39–53.) (c) During the night, Christ having been conducted to the high-priest's
house (whither Peter followed and denied him), is derided. (xxii. 51 (d) Al day-break on Friday morning, Christ is tried before the Sanhe.
SECTION V. drin (xxii. 66–71.); from whose tribunal, (e) On Friday morning, 1. he is delivered first to Pilate (xxiii. 1—7.), who sends hin to lerod (8-12.); by whoin he is again sent to Pilate, and is by him condemned to be crucified. (13–25.)
-2. Christ's discourse to the women of Jerusalein as he was led forth to be cru. 1. Title.-II. Author.-III. Date.—IV. Genuineness and aucified. (26–31.)
thenticity of this Gospel, particularly of ch. xxi., and ch. vii. The transactions of the third hour.---The crucifixion; Christ's
53., and viii. 11-1.-V. Its occasion and design.- Account garinents divided; the inscription on the cross; his address to the penitent robber. (xxiii. 32–43.)
of the tenets of Cerinthus.-Analysis of its contents.-VI. (g) From the sixth to the ninth hour.-The preternatural darkness,
The Gospel of John, a supplement to the other three.-VII. rending of the veil; death of Christ, and its concomitant circun. stances. (xxiii. 44—49.)
Observations on its style. (k) Between the ninth hour and sunset, Jesus Christ is interred by Joseph of Ariunathea. (xxiii. 50–56.)
I. THE TITLE of this Gospel varies greatly in the manuSect. 5. Transactions after Christ's resurrection on Easter scripts, editions, and versions. In the Codex Vaticanus it Day.
is simply xxtu !@zvrny, according to John ; in many other MSS. Si. Churist's resurrection testified to the woman by the angel. (xxiv. 1 and editions, Euazzancov To nara levaron, the Gospel according to
John, or to xatx 160 Lyvny (17cov) Evryger, the Gospel according $ ii. Christ appears to two disciples in their way to Emmaus, and also to to (Saint) John; in the Codex Bezæ, AsXETU Eurypasov xz74
Peter. (xxiv. 12-35.) $ ii. His appearance to the apostles, and his instructions to them. (xxiv. 1o2rvnv, the Gospel according to John beginneth. To omit minor 36—49.)
variations in manuscripts of less ancient date in the Syriac Sect. 6. The ascension of Christ, and the apostles' return to titled, " The Holy Gospel, the preaching of St. John, which
version, in Bishop Walton's Polyglott, this Gospel is enJerusalem. (xxiv. 50—52.)
he delivered in Greek, and published at Ephesus:" in the The plan of classifying events, adopted by Luke, has been Arabic version it is “ The Gospel of St. John the son of followed by Livy, Plutarch, and other profane historical wri- Zebedee, one of the twelve apostles, which he wrote in Greek ters. Thus Suetonius, after exhibiting a brief summary of by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit;" and in the Persian the life of Augustus, previous to his acquiring the sovereign version, "The Gospel of John, one of the twelve apostles, power, announces his intention of recording the subsequent which was spoken in the Greek-Roman tongue at Ephesus." events of his life, not in order of time, but arranging them II. John, the evangelist and apostle, was the son of Zebeinto distinct classes ; and then proceeds to give an account of dee, a fisherman of the town of Bethsaida, on the sea of his wars, honours, legislation, discipline, and private life. Galilee, and the younger brother of James the elder. His In like manner, Florus intimates that he would not observe mother's name was Salome. Zebedee, though a fisherman, the strict order of time; but in order that the things, which appears to have been in good circumstances; for the evanhe should relate, might the better appear, he would relate gelical history informs us that he was the owner of a vessel, them distinctly and separately.2
and had hired servants. (Mark i. 20.). And therefore we VIII. If Paul had not informed us (Col.iv. 14.) that Luke have no reason to imagine that his children were altogether was by profession a physician, and conseqỊently, a man of illiterate, as some critics have imagined them to have been, letters, his writings would have sufficiently evinced that he had from a misinterpretation of Acts iv. 13., where the terms had a liberal education; for although his Gospel presents as cz pepe pesta and diwt 16, in our tersion rendered unlearned and many Hebraisms, perhaps, as any of the sacred writings, yet ignorant men, simply denote persons in private stations of his language contains more numerous Græcisms, than that life, who were neither rabbis nor magistrates, and such as of any other writer of the New Testament. The style of had not studied in the schools of the Pharisees, and consethis evangelist is pure, copious, and flowing, and bears a con- quently were ignorant of the rabbinical learning and traditions siderable resemblance to that of his great master Paul. l of the Jews. John and his brother James were, doubtless, Many of his words and expressions are exactly parallel to well acquainted with the Scriptures of the Old Testament, those which are to be found in the best classic authors; and having not only read them, but heard them publicly explained several eminent critics have long since pointed out the sin- in the synagogues; and, in common with the other Jews, gular skill and propriety with which Luke has named and they entertained the expectation of the Messiah, and that his described the various diseases which he had occasion to no- kingdom would be a temporal one. It is not impossible, tice. As an instance of his copiousness, Dr. Campbell has though it cannot be affirmed with certainty, that John had remarked, that each of the evangelists has a number of been a disciple of John the Baptist, before he became a diswords which are used by none of the rest : but in Luke's ciple of Christ. At least, the circumstantial account, which Gospel, the number of such words as are used in none of the he has given in ch. i. 37–41. of the two disciples who folother Gospels, is greater than that of the peculiar words lowed Christ, might induce us to suppose that he was one found in all the other three Gospels, put together; and that of the two. It is, however, certain that he had both seen and the terms peculiar to Luke are for the most part long and heard our Saviour, and had witnessed some of his miracles, compound words. There is also more of composition in his particularly that performed at Cana in Galilee. (ii. 1–11.) sentences than is found in the other three Gospels, and con- John has not recorded his own call to the apostleship; but sequently less simplicity. Of this we have an example in we learn from the other three evangelists that it took place the first sentence, which occupies not less than four verses. when he and James were fishing upon the sea of Galilee. Further, Luke seems to approach nearer to the manner of other historians, in giving what may be called his own ver- lia in Nov. Test. vol. ii. pp.346. Kuinöct, Comment, in Libros Hist. Nov.
3 Dr. Campbell on the Gospels, vol. ii. pp. 126–129. Rosenmüller, Scho. dict in the narrative part of his work. Thus he calls the Test. vol. ii
. pp. 213-220). Bp. Marsh's Michaelis, vol. iii. part i. pp. 228Pharisees pina zupas, lovers of money (xvi. 14.); and in distin- 21. Pritii, Introd, ad Nov. Test. PP. 181–195. Viser, Herm. Sacr
. Nov. guishing Judas Iscariot from the other Judas, he uses the Comm. Crit. in Libros Nov. Test. pp. 81. 88. Bishop Cleaver's Discourse phrase és ne Feveto ApScans, who also proved a traitor. (vi. 16.) on the style of St. Luke's Gospel
, in his Sermons, pp. 219–224. 8vo. Ox. Matthew (x. 4.) and Mark (iii. 19.) express the same senti- ford, 1808 ment in milder language, who delivered him up. Again, the he thinks are three degrees in the call of Saint John to be a follower of
• Matt. jv. 21, 22. Mark i. 19, 20. Luke v. 1–10. Lampe has marked what attempt made by the Pharisees, to extort from our Lord what Christ, viz. 1. His call to the discipleship (Johın i. 37--42.), after which he might prove matter of accusation against him, is expressed continued to follow his business for a short time ; 2. Tlis call to be one of
the immediate companions of Christ (Matt. iv. 21, 22.); and, 3. llis call to 1 Suetonins in Augusto, c. ix. (al. xii.) p. 58. edit. Bipont. This bistorian the apostleship, when the surnaine of Boanerges was given to him and his has pursued the same method in his life of Cæsar.
brother. Lampe, Comment. in Evangelium Johannis Prolegom. cap. ii. pr. 2 Flori, Hist. Rom. lib. ii. c. 19. VOL. II.
And Mark, in enumerating the twelve apostles (iii. 17.), in the year 68; Dr. Owen in 69; Michaelis in 70. But when he mentions James and John, says that our Lord "sar- Chrysostom and Epiphanius, among the ancient fathers, and named them Boanerges, which is, sons of thunder,” from Dr. Mill, Fabricius, Le Clerc, and Bishop Tomline, among which appellation we are not to suppose that they were of the moderns, refer its date, with greater probability, to the particularly fierce and ungovernable tempers (as Dr. Cave year 97, Mr. Jones to the year 98, and Bertholdt to the last has conjectured); but, as Dr. Lardner and others have ob- decad of the first century. The principal argument for its served, it is rather to be considered as prophetically represent- early date is derived from John v. 2., where the apostle says, ing the resolution and courage with which they would openly Now there is at Jerusalem, by the sheep-market, a pool, which and boldly declare the great truths of the Gospel when fully is called in the Febrew tongue Bethesda, having five purches." acquainted with them. How appropriate this title was, the From these words it is urged, that Jerusalem was standing Acis of the Apostles and the writings of John abundantly when they were written; and that if they had been written show.? From the time when John and his brother received after the destruction of Jerusalem, the evangelist would have their immediate call from Christ, they became his constant used the past tense instead of the present, and would have attendants ; they heard his discourses, and beheld his mira- said, There was at Jerusalem a pool, &c. But this argument cles ; and, after previous instruction, both public and private, is more specious than forcible; for, though Jerusalem was they were honoured with a selection and appointment to be demolished, it does not necessarily follow that the pool of of the number of the apostles.
Bethesda was dried up. On the contrary, there are much What the age of John was at this time, his history does stronger reasons for supposing that it escaped the general denot precisely ascertain. Some have conjectured that he was vastation; for, when Vespasian ordered the city to be demolishthen twenty-two years old; others that he was about twenty- ed, he permitted some things to remain for the use of the garfive or twenty-six years of age; and others again think that rison which was to be stationed there; and he would naturally he was about the age of our Saviour. Dr. Lardner is of leave this bathing-place, fitted up with recesses or porticoes opinion that none of the apostles were much under the age for shade and shelter, that he might not deprive the soldiers of thirty, when they were appointed to that important office. of a grateful refreshment. Now, since the evangelist's Whatever his age might have been, John seems to have been proposition may simply regard Bethesda, we cannot be certhe youngest of the twelve, and (if we may judge from tain that it looks further, or has any view to the state of Je his writings) to have possessed a temper singularly mild, rusalem. The argument, therefore, which is deduced from amiable, and affectionate. He was eminently the object of the above passage in favour of an early date, is inconclusive. our Lord's regard and confidence; and was, on various occa- But, besides this argument, we have strong evidence from sions, admitted to free and intimate intercourse with him, so the contents and design of the Gospel itself, that it was not that he was characterized as “the disciple whom Jesus written until the year 97. It is evident, as Bishop Tomline loved.” (John xiii. 23.) Hence we find him present at has forcibly remarked, that the evangelist considers those to several scenes, to which most of the other disciples were whom he addresses his Gospel as but little acquainted with not admitted. He was an eye-witness, in company with Jewish customs and names; for he gives various explanaonly Peter and James, to the resurrection of Jairus's daughter tions which would be unnecessary, if the persons for whom to life, to our Saviour's transfiguration on the mount, and to he wrote were conversant with the usages of the Jews.? his agony in the garden. John repaid this attention by the Similar explanations occur in the Gospels of Mark and Luke; most sincere attachment to his master; for, though, in com- but in this of John they are more marked, and occur more mon with the other apostles, he had betrayed a culpable frequently. The reason of which may be, that when John timidity in forsaking him during his last conflict, yet he wrote, many more Gentiles, and of more distant countries, afterwards recovered his firmness, and was the only apostle had been converted to Christianity; and it was now become who followed Christ to the place of his crucifixion. He necessary to explain to the Christian church, thus extended, was also present at the several appearances of our Saviour many circumstances which needed no explanation while its after his resurrection, and has given his testimony to the members belonged only to the neighbourhood of Judæa, and truth of that miraculous fact; and these circumstances, while the Jewish polity was still in existence. It is reason. together with his intercourse with the mother of Christ able to suppose that the feasts and other peculiarities of the (whom our Saviour had commended to his care) (xix. 26, Jews would be bat little nnderstood by the Gentiles of Asia 27.), qualified him, better than any other writer, to give a Minor, thirty years after the destruction of Jerusalem. circumstantial and authentic history of Jesus Christ.
IV. The Gospel by John has been universally received as In one of our Saviour's interviews with his apostles, after gennine. The circumstantiality of its details proves that the his resurrection, he prophetically told this evangelist that he book was written by a hearer and eye-witness of the discourses would survive the destruction of Jerusalem, and intimated, and transactions it records; and, consequently, could not be not obscurely, that Peter would suffer crucifixion, but that written long afterwards by a Platonic Christian, as it has he would die a natural death. (xxi. 18—24.) After the been recently asserted, contrary to all evidence. But, besides ascension of Christ, and the effusion of the Holy Spirit on this incontestable internal evidence, we have the external and the day of Pentecost, John became one of the chief apostles uninterrupted testimony of the ancient fathers of the Chrisof the circumcision, and exercised his ministry at Jerusalem tian church. His Gospel is alluded to, onee by Clement of and its vicinity, in the manner and with the success related Rome, and once by Barnabas ;' and four times by Ignatius in the Acts of the Apostles:3. He was present at the council bishop of Antioch, who had been a disciple of the evangeheld in that city (Acts xv.) about the year 49 or 50. Until list, and had conversed familiarly with several of the apostles.'' this time he probably remained in Judæa, and had not tra- It was also received by Justin Martyr," Tatian, the churches velled into any foreign countries. From ecclesiastical his- of Vienne and Lyons, už Jrenæus,13 Athenagoras,l* Theophilus tory we learn, that after the death of Mary, the mother of of Antioch,is Clement of Alexandria, 16 'fertullian,' AmmoChrist, John proceeded to Asia Minor, where he founded and nius,18 Origen,19 Eusebius,20 Epiphanius, Augustine, Chry: presided over seven churches in as many cities, but resided sostom, and, in short, by all subsequent writers of the ancient chiefly at Ephesis. Thence he was banished to the Isle of Christian church.24 The Alogi or Alogians, a sect which is Patmos towards the close of Domitian's reign, where he suid to have existed in the second century, are reported to wrote his Revelation. (Rev. i. 9.) On his liberation from exile, by the accession of Nerva to the imperial throne, John
· See Joseplus de Bell. Jud. lib. iii. c. i. Si. returned to Ephesus, where he wrote his Gospel and Epis- the fact, that Vespasian soon after erected magnificent public baths at Rome.
. Dr. Townson's Works, vol. i. p. 224. This conjecture is confirmed by tles, and died in the hundredth year of his age, about the Suetonius in Vespasiano, c. vii. year of Christ 100, and in the third year of the reign of the
See particularly John i. 38. 41, ii. 6. 13., iv. 9., and xi. 55.
Elements of Christ. Theob vol. i. pp. 335. Jones on the Canon, vol. iii. emperor Trajan.
pp. 113–116. III. The precise time when this Gospel was written has • See Jones on the Canon, vol. iii. pp. 117, 118. not been ascertained, though it is generally agreed that John
10 Dr. Lardner's Works, 8vo. vol. i. pp. 120, 121. ; 4to. vol. 1. p. 344.
11 Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. p. 1:39. ; 410. vol. 1. p. 355. composed it at Ephesus. Basnage and Lampe suppose it to
1.70.; 41o. vol. ip. 361. have been written before the destruction of Jerusalem ; and, 13 Ibid. Svo. vol. ii. p. 161. ; 410, vol. i. p. 367. in conformity with their opinion, Dr. Lardner fixes its date
1+ Ibid. 8vo. vol. in. p. 183. ; 410. vol. i. p. 379.
16 Ibid. avo. vol. ii. pp. 212. 220. ; 410. vol. i. pp. 395, 399. 1 Cave's Life of St. James the Great, $ 5. p. 112.
1 lbid. 8vo. vol. ii p. 256. ; 410, vol. I. p. 419. » Lampe, Commenl. in Evangeliuin Johannis Prolegom. cap. i. pp. 21—30. 18 Ibid. Avo. vol. ii. pp. 414-417. ; 4to. vol. I. pp. 503–505. 3 See particularly Acts hii. iv. 1--22. and viii. 5-26.
19 Ibid. 8vo, vol in. Pp. 169, 470.; 41o. vol. i. & Lariiner's Works, Sin. vol. vi. pp. 136--170.: 410. vol. iii. pp. 212–200. 20 lbid. 8vo. vol. iv. pp. 25-27.; 110. vol. ii. pp. 368, 369. Michaelis, vol. iii. part i. pp. 272-271. Lampe, Proleg. in Joan. Evangel pp. 21 See their several testimonies in Lardner's Works, 8vo. vol. vi. pp. 187 31-102. Jones on the Canon, vol. iii. pp. 101–110.
- 190. ; 4to. vol. iii. pp. 227, 228.
12 Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii.
have rejected this Gospel, as well as the rest of John's wri- the seventh verse of John viii., where ruter has the article ter tings; but we have no information concerning these Alogi, prefixed. He that is without sin anong you, let him first cast on which any dependance can be placed : for, in strictness, THE (not a stone, as in our authorized version) stone at her ; we have no account of them except the later and uncertain TON 1OON 27' auta Bersta. The allusion, Bishop Middleaccounts of Philaster and Epiphanius; Irenæus, Eusebius, ton remarks, is to the particular manner of stoning, which and other ancient writers before them, being totally silent required that one of the witnesses (for two at the least were concerning the Alogi. The probability, therefore, is, that necessary, see Deut. xvii. 6.) should throw the stone, which there never was any such heresy,?
was to serve as a signal to the by-standers to complete the With such decisive testimonies to the genuineness of John's punishment. There is therefore strict propriety in calling Gospel, it is not a little surprising, that an eminent critic on this stone TON noter, in order to distinguish it from other the continent should have asserted that his Gospel and Epis- stones. It is not probable that an interpolator would have tles exhibit clear evidence, that it was not written by an eye- been thus exact in his phraseology, or would have adverted witness, but was compiled by some Gentile Christian in the to this apparently trifling circumstance; especially since the beginning of the second century, after the death of the evan- expression of examser TeV ister is not elsewhere found in the gelist John, for whom he passed himself. It is also astonish- New Testament. A few manuscripts (Griesbach and Schulz ing that, with such testimonies to the genuineness of this specify eleven) omit the article: but this, Dr. M. is of opiGospel, so distinguished a critic as Grotius should have nion, only proves that the copyists knew not what to make imagined that the evangelist terminated his history of our of it; and that, had they undertaken to interpolate the pasSaviour with the twentieth chapter, and that the twenty-first sage, they would have done it less skilfully than did the chapter was added after his death by the church at Ephesus. present interpolater, supposing we must consider the passage But this opinion is contradicted by the universal consent of to be spurious.? manuscripts and versions; for, as this Gospel was published Upon a review therefore of the whole evidence respecting before the evangelist's death, if there had been an edition of this disputed clause, we may safely conclude that it preponit without the twenty-first chapter, it would in all probability i derates in favour of its genuineness. have been wanting in some copies. To which we may add V. The design of St. John in writing his Gospel was
to that the genuineness of the chapter in question was never convey to the Christian world just and adequate notions of doubted by any one of the ancient Christian writers. Finally, the real nature, character, and office of that great Teacher, the style is precisely the same as that of the rest of his who came to instruct and redeem mankind. For this purpose, Gospel.3
he studiously selected, for his narrative, those passages of Some doubts have been entertained concerning the genuine- our Saviour's life, which most clearly displayed his divine ness of the portion of this Gospel comprised between ch. power and authority: and those of his discourses, in which vii. 53. and viii. 1-11. Its authenticity has been questioned he spoke most plainly of his own nature, and of the efficacy by Erasmus, Calvin, Beza, Grotius, Le Clerc, Wetstein, of his death, as an atonement for the sins of the world. The Semler, Schulze, Morus, Haenlein, Paulus, Schmidt, and object, which this evangelist had in view, is very clearly various other writers who are mentioned by Wolfius, and stated in chap. xx. verse 31. It was not to accumulate as by Koecher : Griesbach and Schulz have remarked it as a many instances as possible of the miraculous power exerted passage which ought probably to be omitted ; and its genu- by Jesus; but only those, which most distinctly illustrated ineness has been advocated by Drs. Mill and Whitby, Bp. his peculiar office and nature: Many other signs truly did Middleton, Heumann, Michaelis, Storr, Langius, Dettmers, Jesus, in the presence of his disciples, which are not writien in Staeudlin, Kuinvel, and Dr. Bloomfield. The limits neces- this book. But these are written, that ye might believe that sarily prescribed to this section forbid us to enter into a Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing, ye review of all that has been said on this subject; but it may might have life through his name. This expression seems to be permitted to remark that the evidence is in favour of the prove, that those persons are wrong, who suppose that St. genuineness of the passage in question. For, though it is John wrote his Gospel, merely to supply the defects and omisnot found in several ancient versions, and is not quoted or sions of the other Evangelists. The real difference between illustrated by Chrysostom, Theophylact, Nonnus (who wrote them is, that they wrote a history of our Saviour's life; but commentaries or explanations of this Gospel), nor by Ter- St. John, of his person and office." tullian, or Cyprian, both of whom treat copiously on chastity But, besides this more general design of the evangelist, and adultery, and therefore had abundant opportunity of ci- we are informed by Irenæus, and other ancient writers, that uing it, if it had been extant in their copies; yet it is found there were two especial motives that induced John to comin the greater part of the munuscripts (Griesbach has enume- pose his Gospel. One was, that he might refute the heresies rated more than eighty) that are extant, though with great of Cerinthus and the Nicolaitans, who had attempted to cordiversity of readings. "If it had not been genuine, how could rupt the Christian doctrine : the other motive was, that he it have found its way into these manuscripts ? Moreover, míght supply those important events in our Saviour's life, there is nothing in the paragraph in question that militates which the other evangelists had omitted. Respecting the either against the character, sentiments, or conduct of Jesus former of these motives, Irenæus gives us the following Christ; on the contrary, the whole is perfectly consistent account.9 with his meekness, gentleness, and benevolence. To which “ John being desirous to extirpate the errors sown in the we may add, that this passage is cited as genuine by Augus- minds of men by Cerinthus, and sometime before by those tine, who assigns the reason why it was omitted by some called Nicolaitans, published his Gospel : in which he accopyists, viz. sest any offence should be taken by supposing quaints us that there is one God, who made all
things by his that our Lord suffered a guilty woman to go unpunished. word, and not, as they say, one who is the Creator of the But, in reply to this supposition or objection, we may remark, world, and another who is the Father of the Lord: one the 1. That, according to his own declaration, he came not into Son of the Creator, and another the Christ from the superthe world to condemn the world (John iii. 17. viii. 15. xii. 47. celestial abodes, who descended upon Jesus the Son of the Luke xii. 14.) and to execute the office of a judge (and it is Creator, but remained impassible, and afterwards fled back but reasonable to try him by his own principles, in which no to his own pleroma or fulness." inconsistency can be found); and, 2. Any exercise of judicial This testimony of Irenæus has been opposed by Lampe, authority would have given a direct contradiction to that de- Lardner, Tittmann, Kuinöel, and adopted by Buddeus, Miference and subordination which he constantly showed and chaelis, Moldenhawer, Mosheim, Bishop, Tomline, Dr. Owen, inculcated to the power of the civil magistrate. An addi- and other later divines. The principal objections against tional evidence in favour of the disputed clause is found in the declaration of Irenæus may be reduced to the two follow· Dr. Lardner's Works, 8vo. vol. ix. pp. 515 516. ; 410. vol. iv. pp. 690, 691. ing: viz.
ing: Vikat Irenæus is at variance with himself: for in anDr. Bretschneider, in his Probabiliu de Evangelii et Epistolarum Jo. kannis Apostoli Indole, et Origine. 8vo. Lipsiæ, 182). In justice to Dr: other passage he says, “as John the disciple of our Lord Bretschneider it must now be stated that, in the preface to the second edi.
assures us, saying, But these are written, that ye might believe declared himself satisfied concerning the genuineness of this passage that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing ye (Jena Literary Gazette for January, 1827, Supplt. No. 1.)
* The genuineness of the twenty-first chapter of St. John's Gospel is * Kuinöel, Comment. in Libros Nov. Test, Historicos, pp. 379–396. Titt. satisfactorily vindicated against the objections or Grotius, and some inodern manni Commentarius in Evang. Johannis, pp. 318-322. Bishop Middleton's critics, by Professor Weber in his " Authentia capitis ultimi Evangelii Doctrine of the Greek Article, on John viii.
7. Griesbachii et schulzii Nov. Johannis, &c." Halis, 1823, 8vo.
Test. tom. I. pp. 555, 556. Bloopfield's Annotations, vol. iii. pp. 275--284., in • Wolfii Curæ Philologicæ, in loc.
which Dr. B. has given a copious statement of the evidence for and against • Koecheri Analecta, in loc.
this section of St. John's Gospel. • Staeadlin, Prolusio quà Pericopæ de Adulterà, Joh. vii. 53. viii. 1–11., • Bp. Bloomfield's Lectures on the Gospel of Si. John, pp. 4, 5. Veritas el Authentia defenditur. Gottingæ, 1806, 4to.
· Irenæus adv. Haron. lib. iii. e. 11.
might have life through his name ; foreseeing these blasphe- the design and arrangement of John's Gospel, it will be mous notions that divide the Lord, so far as it is in their necessary to take a brief review of the tenets of Cerinthus, power." Now, if Irenæus here meant to say, that John | in opposition to which the evangelist purposely wrote it. only foresaw the errors, which were propagated by Cerinthus This will not only reflect considerable light on particular and the Gnostics, it must appear very extraordinary that he passages, but make the whole appear a complete work, should say, in the passage above quoted, that John wrote regular, clear, and conclusive. against the errors which had been propagated by Cerinthus. Cerinthus was by birth a Jew, who lived at the close of But the contradiction is only apparent; for providens, the the first century: having studied literature and philosophy expression of Irenæus, does not signify, “ foreseeing," but at Alexandria, he attempted at length to form a new and guarding against. The latter passage, therefore, when pro- singular system of doctrine and discipline, by a monstrous perly explained, does not confute but confirm the former. combination of the doctrines of Jesus Christ with the opinions Besides, as Paul, in his first Epistle to Timothy, speaks of and errors of the Jews and Gnostics. From the latter he Gnostic errors, it is evident that they must have been propa- borrowed their Pleroma or fulness, their Æons or spirits, their gated long before John wrote his Gospel.
Demiurgus or creator of the visible world, &c. and so modi2. The second argument, relied upon by those learned fied and tempered these fictions as to give them an air of men who dissent from the common opinion, is, that the early Judaism, which must have considerably favoured the progress fathers, in their catalogues of heretics, for the most part place of his heresy. He taught that the most high God was utterly Cerinthus after Carpocrates, who unquestionably lived and unknown before the appearance of Christ, and dwelt in a taught in the second century. This circumstance would cer. remote heaven called TAHPOMA (Pleroma) with the chief tainly possess considerable weight, if it appeared that the spirits or ÆonsThat this supreme God first generated an early fathers had paid due attention to the regular order of only begotten son, MONOTENEX, who again begat the word, time in their enumeration of heretics : but, instead of this, oroe, which was inferior to the first-born. That Christ we know the fact to be, that the names of heretics are set was a still lower æon, though far superior to some others down by Irenæus, Tertullian, Clement, and others, at ran- That there were two higher æons, distinct from Christ; one dom, and without paying any regard to the times in which called zoh, or life, and the other one, or the light_That they lived.
" But even if Irenæus had not asserted that St. from the æons again proceeded inferior orders of spirits, and John wrote his Gospel against the Gnostics, and particularly particularly one Demiurgus, who created this visible world out against Cerinthus, ihe contents of the Gospel iiself would of eternal matter_That this Demiurgus was ignorant of the lead to this conclusion. The speeches of Christ, which John supreme God, and much lower than the Æons, which were has recorded, are selected with a totally different view from wholly invisible–That he was, however, the peculiar God that of the three first evangelists, who have given such as are and protector of the Israelites, and sent Moses to them; of a moral nature; whereas those which are given by John whose laws were to be of perpetual obligation- That Jesus are chiefly dogmatical, and relate to Christ's divinity, the was a mere man of the most illustrious sanctity and justice, doctrine of the Holy Ghost, the supernatural assistance to the real son of Joseph and Mary-That the Æon Christ debe communicated to the apostles, and other subjects of a like scended upon him in the form of a dove when he was bap. import. In the very choice of his expressions, such as tized, revealed to him the unknown father, and empowered • light,' • life,' &c. he had in view the philosophy of the him to work miracles—That the Æon, LIGHT, entered John Gnostics, who used or rather abused these terms. That the the Baptist in the same manner, and therefore that John was first fourteen verses of John's Gospel are merely historical, in some respects preferable to Christ—That Jesus, after his and contain only a short account of Christ's history before union with Christ, opposed himself with vigour to the God his appearance on earth, is a supposition devoid of all proba of the Jews, at whose instigation he was seized and crucified bility. On the contrary, it is evident that they are purely by the Hebrew chiefs, and that when Jesus was taken capdoctrinal, and that they were introduced with a polemical tive, and came to suffer, Christ ascended up on high, so that view, in order to confute errors, which prevailed at that time the man Jesus alone was subject to the pains of an ignominirespecting the person of Jesus Christ. Unless John had an ous death-That Christ will one day return upon earth, and, adversary to combat who made particular use of the words renewing his former union with the man Jesus, will reign in • light,' and life, he would not have thought it necessary Palestine a thousand years, during which his disciples will after having described the Creator of all things, to add, that enjoy the most exquisite sensual delights. in him was life, and the life was the light of men, or to assert Bearing these dogmas in mind, we shall find that Saint that John the Baptist was not that light. The very meaning John's Gospel is divided into three parts; viz. of the word " light,' would be extremely dubious, unless it Part I. contains Doctrines laid down in Opposition to those of were determined by its particular application in the oriental
Cerinthus. (John i. 1-18.) Gnosis. For without the supposition, that John had to combat with an adversary who used this word in a particular
The doctrines laid down in the first part, as contra-positions sense, it might be applied to any divine instructor, who by to the tenets of Cerinthus, may be reduced to the following his doctrines enlightened mankind. Further, the positions
heads, in which the evangelist asserts, contained in the first fourteen verses are antitheses to posi- 1. That Christ is the Logos or Word of God. tions maintained by the Gnostics, who used the words 20ges,
2. That the Logos and Monogenes are not distinct beings, but one and
the same person. (1. 14.) 3an, pues, peavagerns, Tampus, &c. as technical terms of their
3. That Christ or the Logos is not an inferior Æon, but God (i. 1.) philosophy, Lastly, the speeches of Christ, which St. John 4. That he perfectly knew the supreme God, being always with him
in the Pleroma (i. 18.) has selected, are such as confirm the positions laid down in the first chapter of his Gospel; and therefore we must con
5. That he is not to be distinguished from the Demiurgus; for he is the
creator of the whole world. (i. 3, 10.) clude that his principal object throughout the whole of his 6. That life and light are not particular and separate spirits, but the Gospel was to confute the errors of the Gnostics."
same with the Logos and Christ. (i. 4.7-9.17.) And, therefore, that In addition to the preceding arguments and proofs, there is
Christ, the Logos, Life, Light, the Only.Begotten, are not distinct
Æons, but one and the same divine persons one circumstance highly worthy of remark, which greatly 7. That no particular Æon entered into John the Baptist by the name strengthens the testimony of Irenæus as to the object of John
of Light, io cominunicate to hin a superior knowledge of the divine
will (1. 8.); but that he was a mere man, and, though inspired, much in writing his Gospel ; viz. that he delivered it within a cen
inferior to Jesus, being only the forerunner of him. (i. 6. 8. 15.). tury after that Gospel was written. Now, as Irenæus was a 8. That the supremne God was not entirely unknown before the time disciple of Polycarp, who was personally acquainted with
of Christ ; for men had received such lights on this head, under the
various dispensations through which they passed, that it was their the evangelist, he consequently had the best means of pro- own fault if they remained ignorant. (i. 9, 10.) curing information on this subject. The evidence of a credible 9. That the Jews were not the peculiar people of an inferior God, such writer of the second century, uncontradicted by contemporary writers, or by those who lived in the following century, is pp. 278, 279. Tittmanni Meletemata Sacra in Evangelium Johannis, pp surely preferable to the conjectures offered by critics of the 14–24. Kuinöel, Comment. in Hist. Libros Nov. Test. vol. iii. pp. 42 eighteenth or nineteenth century. In order to understand
• Mosheim's Commentaries, vol. i. pp. 337–347. Dr. Lardner's Works
8vo. vol. ix. pp. 325–327.; 4to. vol. iv. pp. 567-569. Dr. Owen's Observa 1 Quemadmodum Joannes Domini discipulus confirmat, dicens, "Hæc tions on the Four Gospels, pp 88–92, To this learned writer we are chiedy, autem scripta sunt, ut credatis quoniam Jesus est filius Dei, et ut creden. indebted for the preceding observations. The sentiments of Basilides, of tes, vitam æternam habeatis in nomine ejus;" pruridens has blasphemas Alexandria (who was nearly contemporary with Cerinthus), conceming the regulas, quæ dividunt Dominum quantum ex ipsis attinet. Advers. Hæres. Logos, were not
very unlike the tenets of that hæresiarch.' Mr. Townsend
has given an abstract of them in his New Testament, arranged in chrono. 2 Michaelis, vol. iii. part i. p. 280.
logical order, &c. vol. i. pp. 19--21. 3 Lampe, Prolegom. in Johannis Evangelium, vol. i. p. 179. et seq. Bud- Unus et idem ostenditur Logos et Monogenes, et Zoe et Phos, et Soter deus de Ecclesia Apostolica, p. 412. et seq. Mosheim's Commentaries on et Christus filius Dei, et hic idem incarnatus pro nobis. Iren. lib. i. c the Affairs of Christians, vol. i. pp. 337 338. nole. Michaelis, vol. iii. part i. I i. $ 20.
lib. iii. c. 16.
as the Demiurgus: but of Christ himself, the only begotten Son of what our Saviour had taught. (xi. 1—44.) Observe particu.
God. (i. 11.) 10. That in the fulness of time the Son of God took upon him human
larly ver. 41, 42. nature, and became man. (i. 14.)
Sect. 14. A brief account of the different effects which this 11. That he abolished the law of Moses, which was only the shadow
miracle produced on the minds of the Jews; so different, that of good things to come, and in its stead introduced the substance, or the very things signified by it. (i. 17.)
though it won upon many of the people, it exasperated most And lastly,
of the priests. (xi. 45–57. xii. 1-11.) 12. That the Jew has no more right in this divine person, and the pri. Sect. 15. Christ' rides in triumph to Jerusalem, and is provileges conferred through him, than the Gentile ;' for whoever be. lieves in him, becomes thereby a child of God, and is entitled by that
claimed king of Israel. The Greeks, who may be considered adoption to a glorious inheritance. (i. 12, 13.)
as the first fruits of the Gentiles, apply to him and are admitted.
He addresses them in terms suitable to the occasion, and his These propositions being settled, the Evangelist proceeds in Part II. To deliver the Proofs of these Doctrines in an Histori- Sect. 16. Some intimation being now given, that the Gentiles
doctrine is confirmed by a voice from heaven. (xii. 12–36.) cal Manner (i. 19.—xx. 29.), as being all expressed or plainly
were to be admitted into the Christian church, Jesus institutes implied in the Discourses and Transactions of Jesus Christ,
the law of hospitality, and delivers to his disciples a new which may conveniently be divided into eighteen Sections:
commandment, that they should love one another as brethren, viz.
without distinction, and as members of the same church. (xiii. Sect. 1. John the Baptist himself confesses to the Jewish priests, 1–35.)
that he is much inferior to Jesus, refers his own disciples to him, Sect. 17. Christ informs his disciples, in a long discourse, that who acknowledge him to be the Messiah, and are confirmed
a perpetual and intimate union with him, their head, is indisin this faith by the miracle of water converted into wine, at
pensably necessary to salvation; and that, after his departure, Cana in Galilee. (i. 19.-ii. 11.)
he would send down the Holy Spirit, who should guide them Sect. 2. Jesus conducts himself at Jerusalem as the lord of the
into all truth, and enable them to fulfil his commandments. temple (ii. 12—25.), reveals himself to Nicodemus as the only
(xiv.-xvi.) begotten Son of God; shows the design of his coming into the Secr. 18. After this, Jesus recommends his disciples, and all
world, and the necessity of believing in him, (iii. 1—21.) who should in future ages believe in him, to the Father, in a Sect. 3. An additional testimony of John the Baptist to the pathetic and memorable prayer; and at the same time testifies, superiority of Christ, and the excellency of his ordinances.
that not one of his apostles was lost, but Judas Iscariot. (xvii. (iii. 22–36.)
1—26.) As this prayer was favourably heard, and the aposSECT. 4. Jesus visits the Samaritans, declares himself to be the tles were afterwards endowed with extraordinary powers, it
Christ, and foretells the abolition of the Levitical worship. afforded an argument against Cerinthus of the divine authority (iv. 1—42.)
of the doctrines they taught. Sect. 5. By a second miracle, (the curing of a nobleman's dying Sect. 19. Contains a particular account of our Saviour's passion,
child,) Christ demonstrates his divine mission in his own adapted to prove that he did not die as a mere man (xviii. 1. country, where it was most disputed. (iv. 43–54.)
xix. 42.); and also of his resurrection, in opposition to those Sect. 6. As a further proof of the future abrogation of the cere- who denied that he was risen. (xx. 1—29.) monial law, Jesus works a miracle on the Sabbath, by healing
şi. The apprehension of Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane. (xviii. an impotent man at the pool of Bethesda, and vindicates his 1-11.) conduct: declares himself to be the Son of God, and exhibits $ ii. His mock trial before the high-priest, in the house of Caiaphas,
and Peter's denial of him there. (xviij. 12-27.) various evidences of his mission. (v. 1-47.)
§ iii. The accusation of Christ before Pilate the Roman governor, who Sect. 7. To show that he was the end of the law, Jesus substi- having in vain attempted to rescue him from the envy of the Jews, tutes himself in the room of the legal sacrifices ; and commands
scourged him, and delivered biin to be crucified. (xviii. 28–40. xix.
1-16. former part of the verse.) the people, who were used to feast on some of those sacrifices, § iv. Narrative of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. (xix. 16. latter part to eat his flesh and drink his blood. And to convince them of the verse, to v. 37.)
$v. The burial of Christ by Joseph of Arimathea. (xix, 38-42.) that he was truly the bread of life, he miraculously feeds above
$ vi. The resurrection (xx. 1-10.), and Christ's appearances, first to five thousand of them with five barley loaves. The people Mary (11–18.), and, secondly, to the disciples on the same day. being disposed by this miracle to make him a king, Jesus dis- (19—23.)
$ vii. Christ's appearance eight days after to his disciples, Thomas claims all temporal views. (vi. 1–71.)
being present. (24–29.) Ssct. 8. Jesus reproves the ambition of his kinsmen : and going
up to Jerusalem at the feast of tabernacles, promises the PART III. contains an Account of the Person of the Writer of assistance of the Holy Spirit to all true believers. (vii. 1–53.)
this Gospel, and of his design in writing it. (xx. 30, 31, SECT. 9. He declares himself to be the light of the world ; re
xxi.) proves the Jews for rejecting him ; promises immortality to Sect. 1. Comprises a declaration of the end which Saint John his followers; and speaks of his own existence as prior to that
had in view in composing his Gospel; viz. that his readers of Abraham. (viii, 12–59.)
might be convinced that Jesus is The Christ the Son of God Sect. 10. A woman taken in adultery is brought to Jesus, who (xx. 31.); and consequently that the tenets and notions of avoids giving judgment in her case, and turns the consciences
Cerinthus were altogether false and heretical. In this section of his enemies on themselves. (viii. 1-11.)
is related Christ's appearance to his disciples at the sea of Sect. 11. In proof of his being the light of the world, he restores Tiberias, and his discourse to the apostle Peter. (xxi. 81–19.)
a blind man to sight,2 and warns the Jews of that judicial Sect. 2. Relates to the evangelist John himself; Christ checks darkness under which they were soon to be sealed up, for per- Peter's curiosity concerning his death. (xxi. 20—23.) The verting so basely those means of knowledge, which were gra
conclusion. (24, 25.) ciously offered to them. (ix. 1-41.)
This section seems to have been added, as a confutation of the opinion Suct. 12. After this he represents himself as the door of the
entertained by some, that Saint John was not to die :-an opinion
which might have weakened his authority, if he had suffered it to sheepfold, and tells the Pharisees, who called themselves the
pass unrefuted. shepherds of the people, that they “ who entered not by the
Besides refuting the errors of Cerinthus and his followers, door into the sheepfold, but climbed up some other way,” Michaelis is of opinion that John also had in view to confute whatever character they might assume, were in reality no bet- the erroneous tenets of the Sabeans, a sect which claimed ter than thieves and robbers. A reflection which the Chris- John the Baptist for its founder. He has adduced a variety tians of those days could hardly avoid applying to Cerinthus of terms and phrases, which he has applied to the explanaand other hæresiarchs. Then follows a description of a good tion of the first fourteen verses of John's Gospel in such a shepherd and a hireling, which may be regarded as a kind of manner as renders his conjecture not improbable. Perhaps test, by which to judge of the different conduct of the apostles we shall not greatly err if we conclude with Rosenmüller,
and heretics, &c. (x. 1–42.) Sect. 13. Jesus performs a signal miracle, by restoring Lazarus • Washing the feet (as we have seen in the early part of this volume) was to life, after he had been dead four days," in the presence of ler, who was to be hospitably received (Gen. xviii. 4. xix. 2. xliii.
commonly, in the eastern countries, the first kindness shown to a travel. a large number of people ; which was attended with this pecu- whence it came to be used for hospitality in general. (I Tim. v. 10.) When liar circumstance, that it was wrought after an express invo
our Saviour therefore washed the feet of his disciples, and taught them to
condescend in like inanner to their inferiors, it amounted to the same thing cation of God, that he would apply it to the confirmation of as if he had instituted and established the law of hospitality among all his
future followers. Now, as strangers are the objects of this law, and not
persons who live in the same community, it was indeed, in the strictest 1 Origen. Philocal. c. i. p. 17. ed. Spencer.
sense, a NEW commandment to them, who thought it their duty" to avoid * See a critical examination of this miracle, supra, Vol. I. pp. 104, 105. those of another nation." (Acts x. 28.) * Ibid. pp. 105, 106.
• Michaelis, vol. iii.