« PreviousContinue »
rently of Religion.
i Cor. i. 22, 23, 24. For the Jews require a Sign, and the
Greeks seek after Wisdom : But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling-block, and unto the Greeks · foolishness : But unto them which are
called, both Yews and Greeks, Christ the
N the following Discourse Ser
upon these Words, I shall ist XIL explain distinctly the several Expressions contained in the
Text; and 2dly, I shall deduce some useful Inferences therefrom. VOL V.
SERM. I. In order to Explain distinctly the XII. several Expressions made use of in the
Text, 'tis to be observed that the Doctrine therein contained, consists plainly of the three following Heads. ift, That the Great and general Difference, between the Humours or Tempers of the Nation of the Jews on one hand, and the Greeks ( who were Then the principal and most polite part
of the heathen World) on the other hand, was This; That the Jews, in Their examination into the Truth of any Doctrine proposed to them, were always apt to insist presently upon some Miracle, upon some Token to be shown them, in proof of the Doctrine's coming from God; Whereas the Temper of the Gentiles was, to expect conviction by Difputation and Argument, according to the Philosophy of the Times they lived in, which was esteemed the Wisdom of the Age then present: The Jews require a Sign, and the Greeks seek after Wisdom. 2.dly, That Persons of Both these Tempers, and that pretended to make use of Each of these ways of judging, were
generally extremely prejudiced against the Ser m.
XII. Doctrine of the Gospel: Insomuch that the coming of Christ into the World, in the manner he did, in a mean, humble and lowly appearance, teaching a Doctrine of Morality, Plainness, and Simplicity; was both a great Disappointment to the Jews, who expected one that should in a miraculous and pompous manner deliver them from their Enemies; and at the same time was no less disagreeable to the then prevailing fashion and method of the Gentiles, who judged of Doctrines by
the Eloquence, and Oratory, and Artfuli ness in Disputing, of Those who taught and
maintained them: We preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling-block, and
unto the Greeks Foolishness. 3dly, That i nevertheless, in Truth and Reality, setting
aside Prejudices and Corrupt Notions, the Ś Doctrine of Christ was accompanied with
the highest and most complete Evidence, ac
cording to Both these Methods of judging: 31 It was attended with the fullest Demon
strations of Divine Power, in the Miracles God worked by him; And it had all real Vol. V.
SER M. marks of Wisdom, in its perfect agrees XII. ableness to the Dictates of True and Im
partial Reafon : But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the Power of God, and the Wisdom of God.
ist, The Great and general Difference, between the Humours or Tempers of the Nation of the Yews on one hand, and the Greeks (who were Then the principal and most polite part of the Heathen World) on the other hand, the Apostle observes, was This; That the Jews, in Their examination into the Truth of any Doctrine proposed to them, were always apt to infift presently upon fome Miracle, upon fome Token to be shown them, in proof of the Doctrine's coming from God; Whereas the Temper of the Gentiles was, to expect conviction by Disputation and Argument, in Methods answering to the Philosophy of the Times they lived in, which was the Standard of Wifdom of the Age then present: The Jews require a Sign, and the Greeks seek after Wisdom, As to the Temper of the Greeks in this matter ; nothing is more
notorious in History, than that, about the Ser M. Times of our Saviour and his Apostles,
XII. che things principally esteemed among them were Oratory and the Art of Difputing : Oratory, by which Things were sec forth in a beautiful Light, adorned with proper figures, made pleasing and acceptable to the Hearers by a Variety of agreeable expressions; And the Art of Disputing; by which every thing could be supported with fome plausible Arguments, every thing could be opposed with Some seeming Difficulties, and every Dificulty could by men of Parts and Ingenuity have something offered in Reply to it. These Instances of Skill, in themselves, and when applied to good Purposes, were Both of them really useful and valuable. By Oratory, Truth and Right represented in a good View, and clothed in proper and agreeable expressions, appeared with a Greater Lustre, and made more Advancageous Impressions: And by Skill in arguing, Reason was taught to exert itself in its full Strength, and Truth to shine forth in its peculiar and inimitable Clear