« PreviousContinue »
Scriptures which attaches to histories connected with home scenes and familiar localities. The Euphrates and Tigris rise amid the wild recesses of bis native mountains. According to a favorite theory of the learned, Eden once bloomed not far from the still lovely shores of the lake of Van. Aud whether Armenian or Chaldean tradition be regarded, whether Jebel Judi, or that which now bears the name be the true Ararat, they are both on the boundaries of Koordistan. From its mountains he can look down on the native land of Abraham, and it is a chief of his own race who now rules in Khaznaoor, the treasury of Ur, a few hours to the south of the farfamed Nisibis. Still farther south, he overlooks the ancient seats of Nimrol and Sennacherib. In Koordistan lie the bones of the slain of the king of Grecia, when Persia fell before his resistless arms. Perhaps, too, in the little village of Gohava, near the mouth of the Khaboor, he might be disposed to find the Ahava of the fast of Ezra. But the enumeration of all the passages of Seripture illustrated in their household arrangements, their salutations, their customs in the house and by the way, would detain uis too long. Let those already enumerated serve for a sample of the rest, while we accompany our shepherd op a journey to Syria, whither be goes to dispose of the increase of his flock. His preparations are soon made. Besides the produce of his flock, iwo or three goatskins filled with millet or barley meal, hard dry bread and perhaps some nuts and raisins, constitute bis provision for the road. These are borne by a donkey as rough and shaggy as himself. So that should he meet with Joseph's brethren on their way to Egypt, it would be hail fellows well met ;' and should he pass through Gilgal, it would need neither craft nor cunning to present himself at the camp with bread dry and mouldy, ragged garments, and shoes old and clouted, as did the wily Gibeonites in olden time.
“Our Koord, however, goes on no such errand. He only seeks a market for his sheep, among the cities and silk-growers of Syria. Leisurely does he travel with his feecy charge, and should Esau inquire the reason, he might return the same answer as did his prudent brother. In the morning he rises from bis couch on the green hill-side-perhaps he may further resemble Jacob in leaving a stony pillow. He goes before his flock and they follow him, for they know his voice, and therefore, my sheep hear my voice and I know them aid they follow me,' are to him familiar words. Is the region about bim sterile and bare ? Driving his donkey before him and his flock running behind him, he hurries forward to more fruitful scenes; perhaps carrying some weakling in his bosom, or less scripturally, fastening it on the donkey amid the stuff.' When he reaches more fertile regions, he allows them to lie down in the green pastures and rest, or crop the tender grass. Day after day you may find hiin leading them by the deep, still waters of the Euphrates, lingering among the trees planted by the rivers of water, loath to strike out again across the intervening waste. At noontide, shepherd and sheep find shelter under the branches of some spreading walnut tree; or they huddle together under the shadow of some great rock in the more weary land before them. At evening they lie down together; the shepherd taking turns with his companion in watching over their flocks by night.
“ Or some hospitable patriarch runs to meet them from the cent door and bows himself and says : * Behold now, my lords, turn in, I pray you, into your servant's house and tarry all night and wash your feet, for we have both straw and provender enough and room to lodge in.' Between the Euphrates and the plains of the Orontes, be lifts up the stone that is let down into the well's mouth, somewhat on the principle of the glass stopper of a decanter; draws the water with such a leathern bucket as the daughters of Jethro used before himn; pours it into such rude stone troughs as might have received it from the hands of Moses and David; and perhaps quarrels with other shepherds, who in modern as well as ancient times seek to monopolize the precious element. So also the Arab herdmen may dispute his title to the pastures through which be passes, as the herdmen of Lot sought to deal with those of Abraham.
“At any rate he will find no cause to complain that the treatment Israel, received at the hand of Edom and the Amorite on their journey to the same land, is become either old fashioned or obsolete.
So in perils of robbers, in perils of his own countrymen (for the tribes are not always at peace among themselves), in perils in the wilderness, fighting like David with the wild beasts of the desert, and sympathizing with Jacob wben in the day the drought consumed him, and the frost by night, he reaches the end of his journey full of Biblical if not spiritual experience.
“I was much interested once in watching one of these shepherds in the streets of Mosul. He had just arrived with a large flock; part of which he had left outside the walls in the care of his companions, and a part which had been sold he was himself conducting to the place of slaughter. The narrow streets of the bazaar were full of confusion. Camels and donkeys, mules and muleteers, almost choked up the passage way. Some of these were loaded with huge, unwieldy burdens ; others were just relieved of loails that still stood in the way, making confusion worse confounded. Arabs and Fellabeen, bustling townsmen and noisy bucksters, stood, elbowed, or passed along as opportunity offered. It seemed a hopeless endeavor to take a flock of sheep through the crowded thoroughfare. But the shepherd stalks on before, picking his way as best he may, gazing with open mouth and dilated eye on the novelties which distract his attention. Now he is struck by some loaded animal; but he receives it as a matter of course, and resumes bis gaze. Now he must stop, for his
De Wette's Apocalypse.
way is completely hedged up, and he turns round to encourage his frightened followers. These, stuuned and bewildered by strange sights and sounds, are intent only on one object—that of keeping near their master. They dart through between the legs of the camels, brush past the men, leap over the bales, and leave locks of white wool on the sharp corners of the platforms (mustubehs) before the shops. Pressing close behind the shepherd, they seem to tell him of their troubles and claim his protection. So they follow him as eagerly and as closely as ever they went after him on their native hills.
“Looking on such a scene, who could hold back bis thoughts from the Lainb of God? And it was a relief to know that, not bound by a cord and dragged by main force, not driven by fierce butchers from whom he could not escape; but just as these, going cheerfully and obediently to the death before them, free and unconstrained, overleaping every obstacle and pressing onward, so 'He was led as a lamb to the slaughter. And yet not altogether as these: they go in ignorance; he knew whither he went, and yet knowing it, that knowledge did not slacken his speed. Even then he could urge on his lagging disciples with an · Arise, let us go hence, though he knew that he went to insult and agony, to death and worse than death, the being forsaken of his God and suffering unpitied and in share the just for the unjust, that we might be the sheep of his pasture, and joint heirs of his glory."
De Wette's APOCALYPSE. From a cursory examination of De Wette's Commentary on the Apocalypse, last part of Vol. III., Basil, 1848, pp. 207, it does not strike us as adding many things of special value to the interpretation of the book, aside from the accurate explanation of words and phrases. He speaks of Ewald's Commentary, 1828 (see Stuart's Apoc. I. 473), as having taken on the whole the right position, and that Liicke, 1832, bas given the correct, fundamental outlines of a theory of the interpretation of the Apocalypse. De Wette arranges the contents of the book into I. the Superscription and lotroduction, ch. 1-3, notice of the author, contents, and the epistles to the seven churches ; II. the Revelation, ch. 4–22: 5. The first series of development is contained in ch. 4-11, viz. 1. the Exposition, vision of God, book given to the Lamb to open, ch. 4–5; 2. the revelations in respect to the future, viz. the opening of the first six seals, ch. 5:7, and the opening of the seventh seal, and the seven trumpets. The second series of development embraces ch. 12–22: 5. 1. Intermediate scenes, ch. 12—14, the enemies of Christ and his kingdom, symbols and proclamations of victory and of judgment; 2. The seven woetrumpets, Babylon's fall, ch. 15—19: 10. 3. Victory over the two beasts and Satan, and their punishment, the thousand years' Reign of Christ, 19: 11– 20: 6. 4. The End. Final triumph and last Judgment. The New World and the heavenly Jerusalem, 20: 7—22: 5. III. Confirmation of the truth of the visions by the angel and Christ himself, 22: 6—21.
Commentar über das Buch Josua, von Karl Friedrich Theil, professor of Exegesis and Oriental Languages at Dorpat, 1848, pp. 411. The author's views are decidedly orthodox. He published a Commentary on the books of Chronicles in 1833, and on the books of Kings in 1846. He proposes to continue bis researches on the other historical books. The second edition of a work of some value, entitled “ Der Buch der Richter, by Prof. G. L. Studer of , Berne, was published in 1812. Zur Geschichte des Kanons, von Dr. K. A. Credner of Giessen, 1847, pp. 424, is the work of a rationalist critic of much ability. The third edition of De Wette's Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles, 1848, pp. 190, scarcely differs from the preceding edition. Wieseler on the Chronology of the Acts (Göttingen, 1848), is a very important production, though he goes into some unnecessary minuteness of detail. We shall give a further account of it hereafter. He decides in favor of the theory that Paul was imprisoned only once at Rome. He also maintains that Peter visited Rome but once. - Dr. H. A. Meyer's Commentary on the Philippians, (forming the first half of Part Ninth of his work, 1847), is a rich addition to our means for understanding this epistle. The second part, containing Colossians and Philemon, has also appeared.
Die Reden des Herrn Jesu : Andeutungen für gläubiges Verstandniss derselben, von Rudolf Stier, D. P. Barmen, 1843—48, Vol. I. pp. 289. II. 449. III. 470. IV. 627. V. 551. VI. 1054. The place of the publication of this work would indicate its character. It is strictly orthodox, and its predominant aim is practical. It is a most copious review of all the important opinions and discussions in relation to the discourses and words of Jesus, and is brought up to the most recent time. Its philology is precise, though the views of the author are sometimes fanciful. He bas not a little genius, and many of his remarks are quite striking. E. he terms Jean Paul “ a great beathen in Christendom,” as Plutarch might be said to be a great Christian in heathendom. The principal fault of the work is its vast length.
Das Leben Jesu nach den Evangelien dargestellt, von Dr. Job. Peter Lange, professor der Theologie in Zürich, 1844–48, in five volumes octavo, in all, 2782 pp. This is one of the most important works on the Life of our Lord which has been called forth in recent times. The author goes over the entire ground. While the exegetical element is not deficient, it is written in a continuous style, in an earnest and devotional spirit, and contains profound and original thoughts. It labors with much success to account for and reconcile the discrepancies in the Gospels. 1849.]
Notice of Gottfried Hermann.
The work was not first suggested by Strauss's Life of Jesus, as the author had been making preparations for many years. It is pleasant to find that the city of Zuingli's abode has so able and excellent a defender of the faith as Prof. Lange.
Gottfried Hermann, philologist facile princeps, lately deceased at Leipsic, his native city. He completed bis 76th year on the 28th of Nov. 1848. We had the pleasure of seeing him at the meeting of the German Oriental Society in Jepa, in Sept. 1846. He took no active part in the proceedings, but was treated with distinguished honor, being conducted to and from his seat by the president of the society, Prof. Hand of Jepa. He was about the middle height, erect, nimble in his movements, bis countenance not unpleasing, yet with a sharp look, and his air that of a man of business. At the table and in social life, he was full of animation and glee, wholly merging the philologist in the boon companion. Dr. Parr, many years ago, called him “the greatest among the very great critics of the present age.” This philological sovereignty, no one has been of late disposed to question. In an exact knowledge of the structure and laws of the Greek and Latin languages, of the niceties of prosody, of the shades of meaning in the particles, of idioms and of dialectic peculiarities, and in that tact or instinctive judgment which is partly the result of long practice, no one, we suppose, was regarded as his equal. He was by eminence a philologist, a grammatical student. In what is called the general, philosophical study of language, apart from the principles of grammar, be had but little faith. Hermann belonged to that class whose talents are very early developed. At fourteen, he was ready to enter the university. Though he tried awhile, in obedience to paternal wishes, to study law, he yet felt an uncontrollable inclination towards history, philosophy, and particularly the classics. He became an academical docent in Leipsic in 1794, defending the thesis De Poeseos Generibus. In four years be became professor extraordinarius of philosophy, and in 1803, professor ordinarius of Eloquence, to which Poetry was added in 1809. His connection with the Greek Society founded by him in 1793, with which the philological seminary was afterwards joined, contributed greatly to bis own reputation and that of the university. By his essay De Mythologia Graecorum antiquissima, a correspondence was occasioned between him and Creuzer, which subsequently appeared in print. In consequence of bis Review of Böckb's Inscriptions, in 1826, a war broke out between these veteran pbilologists, which was maintained with great spirit and some animosity on both sides.
We are pained, also, to see a notice of the death of the distinguished philologist and classical editor, John Caspar Orelli, professor in the university of Zurich. He was a learned and indefatigable scholar, and bis works are well known and highly appreciated throughout the world. His