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III. Did a long series of years elapse after the death of Saint John, in which the book was unknown, and in which it must unavoidably have been mentioned and quoted, had it really existed?
Answer. No such period did elapse. Michaelis himself has allowed, that this book, even if forged and spurious, existed before the year 120, that is, within twenty-three years of the time which we have shewn to be that of its publication ; but even in this period we have seen it quoted and acknowledged, as appears probable, by the Apostolical Fathers. (See chap. iji. and v.)
IV. Is the style of the Apocalypse different from that of Saint John in his other writings?
Answer. It cannot be denied that there is some difference, but it is a difference which admits of a reasonable explanation, as may be seen in the former part of this chapter.
V. Are events recorded, which happened later than the time of Saint John?
Answer. No such events are recorded. Nor, we may add, are any events predicted, which occurred before the time when the book appears to have been written ; which is a case happening to pretended prophecies. (See chapter viii.)
VI. Are opinions advanced in the Apocalypse, which contradict those which Saint John is known to have maintained in his other writings?
Answer. The theology which it contains is found to be precisely that of St. John in his other writings; and the wild opinions of the Chiliasts,
though they had probably their origin from a passage of this book, are to be attributed only to the rash interpretation of it by these visionaries. (See chap. viii.)
Thus, bringing this prophetical book to the test proposed by Michaelis,-by the most successful opponent of its claims to a divine origin, we shall be obliged to confess its indubitable right to that place in the canon of sacred Scripture, which the ancient Fathers of the Church assigned to it, and which the reformers in the Protestant Churches have with mature deliberation confirmed.
END OF THE DISSERTATION.
SINCE the preceding sheets were committed
I have seen a work on the authenticity of the New Testament, translated by Mr. Kingdon, from the German of Dr. Less. In this publication, fifty pages are employed in an attempt to discredit the authenticity of the Apocalypse. And since the otherwise excellent Treatise, of which this attempt is a part, is likely to pass into the hands of many young students in Divinity, it may be aseful to offer some observations upon it.
These may be presented in a small compass; because there are few objections of moment advanced by Dr. Less, against the Apocalypse, which have not been repeated by Michaelis, and already considered in the foregoing Dissertation*.
* The latest edition of Less's work was published in 1786; that of Michaelis, in 1788; (see the Prefaces of their Translators ;) consequently Michaelis had the opportunity of adopting or rejecting the arguments of Less.
I have now, therefore, only to note and answer those observations and arguments of Less, which his learned follower did not produce.
In page 143, Dr. Less objects to the Evidence of Theophilus of Antioch in favour of the Apocalypse, because the work of this Father against Hermogenes, in which he is said to have quoted from this Book of Scripture, is no longer extant.
Answer. But what scholar will hesitate a moment to admit, that Theophilus received the Apocalypse as of Divine authority, when he reads in Eusebius *, that in his time that work of Theophilus was extant, in which he had used proofs, or testimonies of Scripture, taken from the Apocalypse ? Dr. Less himself has very properly supported the authenticity of the other Scriptures by the evidences of writings, now lost, but reported by Eusebius: (ch. i. sect. 3:) and Michaelis says, that the Apocalypse was undoubtedly received hy Theophilus, as the work of Saint Johnt.
In pages 186, 202, objection is made to the Apocalypse, because the relator represents himself as in a trance during the exhibition of it.
Answer.—The expression, syzvoueny sy wusu pati, cannot properly be translated, “I was in a trance." Was Jesus in a trance, when NYETO EN TW WVEU.XTI, “ he was led in the Spirit into the wilder
• Hist. Ecc). lib, iy, c. 24.