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A. M. 1657. A. C. 2317 ; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M, 2257. A. C. 3154. GEN. CH. viii, 20. TO THE END OF CH. ix. ed by God to be a witness of his covenant with the new sign; and as it appeared first after the deluge, and was world, and a messenger to secure mankind from destruc- formed in a thin watery cloud, there is, methinks, a great tion by deluges; so that, had it appeared before the easiness and propriety of its application for such a pur. food, the sight of it afterwards would have been but a pose. For if we suppose, that while God Almighty was poor comfort to Noah and his posterity, whose fear of declaring his promise to Noah, and what he intended for an inundation was too violent ever to be taken away by the sign of it, there appeared at the same time in the a common and ordinary sign.
clouds c a fair rainbow, that marvellous and beautiful For, suppose that God Almighty had said to Noah," meteor which Noah had never seen before, it could not “ I make a promise to you, and to all living creatures, but make a most lively impression upon him, quickening that the world shall never be destroyed by water again ; his faith, and giving him comfort and assurance that and for confirmation of this, behold I set the sun in the God would be stedfast to his purpose. firmament ;" would this have been any strengthening of For God did not “set this bow in the clouds for his Noah's faith, or any satisfaction to his mind ? “Why,” own sake,” to engage his attention and revive his says Noah," the sun was in the firmament when the deluge memory, whenever he looked on it (though that be the came, and was a spectator of that sad tragedy; and as expression which the Holy Spirit, speaking after the it may be so again, a what sign or assurance is this manner of men, has thought fit to make use of), but for against a second deluge ?” But now, if we suppose, on our sakes was it placed there, as an illustrious symbol the other hand, that the rainbow first appeared to the of the Divine mercy and goodness, and to confirm our inhabitants of the earth after the deluge, nothing could belief and confidence in God: and therefore, whenever be a more proper and apposite sign for Providence to 2. we look upon the rainbow, we should do well to pitch upon, in order to confirm the promise made to praise him who made it; for very beautiful is it in the Noah and his posterity, that the world should no more brightness thereof. It compasseth the heavens with a be destroyed by water. The rainbow had a secret con- glorious circle, and the hands of the Most High have bexion with the effect itself, and so far was b a natural bended it.' · Burnet's Theory.
And as the goodness of God was very conspicuous to father of Epie poetry, does by an easy and lively fiction, bring Noah and his posterity, in giving them a new sign for the in Jupiter, the king of heaven, sending Iris, his messenger, with confirmation of his promises ; so it was no less remark
peremptory command to Neptune, the prince of waters, to able in the new charter which he granted them, for the desist from any farther assisting the Grecians, and annoying the enlargement of their diet. That our first parents, a in Trojans ; and, at the same time, that Iris is sent with this mes their state of integrity, had not the liberty of eating flesh age to the watery deity, the poet has so contrived
the matter is very evident, because they were limited by that injunc, that Apollo, or the sum, which is the parent and efficient cause d the rainbow, be sent with another message to Hector, and tion which appoints herbs and fruits for their food : 3 the Trojans, in order to encourage them to take the field again, Behold I have given you every herb, bearing seed, and renew their attack. The meaning of all which fine machinery, is no more than this,-that, after a great deal of rain, which had caused an innundation, and thereby made the
Ecclus, xliii. 11, 12.
* Gen. i. 29, 30. Trojan horse useless, the sun began to appear again, and the come from thick clouds, it is a token that they now grow thin; rainbow in a cloud opposite to the sun, which was a sure prognos- and therefore the God of nature made choice of this sign, rather tie of fair weather.-Bibliotheca Biblica, vol. 1.; Occasional than any other, to satisfy us, that he would never suffer the Annotations, 2. in the Appendix.
clouds to thicken again to such a degree as to bring another dea When God gives a sign in the heavens, or on the earth, of luge upon the earth.-. Patrick's Comment. A rainbow is formed any prophecy or promise to be fulfilled, it must be by something from the opposite sun darting its rays on a cloud that is not new, or by some change wrought in nature, whereby he testifies thick; it therefore naturally signifies, that by the command of to us that he is able and willing to stand to his promise. Thus God the rain will no mure overwhelm the world; for how can it God puts the matter to Ahaz, Ask a sign of the Lord, ask it take place, since neither is the heaven totally overspread with either in the depth, or in the height above;' and when Ahaz clouds, nor are those clouds which exist exceedingly dense.would ask to sign, God gives hin one unasked; · Behold a virgin Valesius on Sacred Philosophy, c. 9. shall conceive and bear a son.' Thus when Abraham asked a c The ingenious Marcus Marci is of opinion, that the rainbow sign, whereby he might be assured of God's promise, that his which first appeared to Noah after the flood, and was so particu. sal should inherit the land of Canaan, it is said, that when the larly dignified by God, as to be consecrated for a divine sign, was sm went down, and it was dark, behold a smoking furnace and not the common one, but a great and universal iris, inimitable by burning lamp passed between the pieces of the beasts, which art, which he has defined by a segment of a circle, dissected into be hail cut asunder, Gen, xv. 17. And, in like manner, in the several gyrations (or rounds) by the diversity of the colours, sig given to Hezekiah for his recovery, and to Gideon for his differing one from another, begotten by the sunbeams refracted victory, in the former case, the shadow went back ten degrees in the atmosphere, and terminated with an opaque superficies. But in Ahaz's dial, Isa, xxxviii. 8. and, in the latter, the fleece was whether this serves to explain the matter any better, or whether wet, and all the ground about it dry;' and then, to change the the common rainbow be not an appearance illustrious enough to trial, “it was dry, and all the ground about it wet,' Judges vi. answer the purposes for which it was intended, we leave the 38, 39. These were all signs, proper, significant, and satisfactory, curious to inquire; and shall only observe farther, that, whether having something new, surprising, and extraordinary in them, it was an ordinary or extraordinary bow which appeared to Noah, devoting the hand and interposition of God: but where every it is the opinion of some, that the time of its first appearing, was thing continues to be as it was before, and the face of nature, in not immediately after he had sacrificed, (as is generally supposed,) all its parts, the very same, it cannot signify anything new, nor but on the 150th day of the flood, when God remembered Noah, any new intention of the author of nature; and, consequently, upon which very day of the year they likewise calculate the birth cannot be a sign or pledge, a token or assurance of the accom- of Christ (as pretypified thereby) to have exactly fallen out, and pishment of any new covenant, or promise made by him.- that even the glory of the Lord, which shone round about the Burnet's Theory, b. 2. c. 5.
shepherds, was a gracious phenomenon, corresponding with this Common philosophy teaches us, that the rainbow is a natural sign of the covenant.—Bibliotheca Biblica, ibid. sigu, that there will not be much rain after it appears, but that d This notion the Pagan poets and philosophers had received. the clouds begin to disperse: for, as it never appears in a thick For Ovid in his description of these times, gives us to understand choud, taat only in a thin, whenever it appears after showers which I that they fed on no flesh, but lived altogether on herbs and A. M. 1657. A. C. 2347; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M. 2257. A. C. 3154. GEN. CH. viii. 20. TO THE END OF CH. ix. which is upon the face of the earth, and every tree, in the earth was corrupted by the deluge, and the virtue of the which is the fruit of a tree, yielding seed; to you it its herbs, and plants, and other vegetables, sadly impairshall be for meat.' Nay, so far was mankind from being ed by the saltness and long continuance of the waters, indulged the liberty of eating flesh at that time, that we so that they could not yield that wholesome and solid find the beasts of the field,' creatures that in their nutriment which they did before : Though others rather nature are voracious,' and the fowl of the air, and every think, that God indulged them in this, 3. because of the thing that creeped upon the earth,' under the same hardness of their hearts;' and that, perceiving the eagerrestraint, as having nothing allowed them for their food ness of their appetites towards carnal food, and designbut the herbage of the ground; because it was the ing withal to abbreviate the term of human life, he gave Almighty's will that, in the state of innocence, no them a free license to eat it; but knowing at the same violence should be committed, nor any life maintained time that it was less salutary than the natural products at the loss and forfeiture of another’s.
of the earth, he thence took occasion to accomplish his This was the original order and appointment, and so will and determination of having the period of human it continued after the fall ; for we can hardly suppose life made much shorter. Nor is the reason which * that God would allow a greater privilege to man, after Theodoret assigns for God's changing the diet of men his transgression, than he did before. On the contrary, from the fruits of the earth to the flesh of animals much we find him. cursing the ground for man's sake, and amiss, viz., “ That foreknowing, in future ages, they telling him expressly, that “in sorrow he should eat of it would idolize his creatures, he might aggravate the all the days of his life ;' and though it should bring forth absurdity, and make it more ridiculous so to do, by their thorns and thistles to him, yet bere the restriction is still consuming at their tables that to which they sacrificed at continued, ‘of the herbs of the field thou shalt eat,' their altars ; since nothing is more absurd than to which is far from implying a permission to make use of worship what we eat." living creatures for that purpose.
It cannot be denied, indeed, but that the grant of Nay, farther, we may observe, that such a permission dominion which God gave Adam in his state of innocence had been inconsistent with God's intention of punishing is now much impaired; and that the creatures, which to him by impoverishing the earth ; since, had God indulged him were submissive through-love, by us must be used him the liberty of making use of what creatures he pleased with severity, and subjected by fear. But still it is no for his food, he might easily have made himself an amends small happiness to us that we know how to subdue them; for the unfruitfulness of the earth, by the many good that the horse and the ox patiently submit to the bridle things which nature had provided for him. The dominion, and the yoke ; and such creatures as are less governable, therefore, which God at first gave mankind over brute we bave found out expedients to reclaim. For though animals could not extend to their slaying them for food, man's strength be comparatively small, yet is there no since another kind of diet was enjoined them ; nor could creature in the earth, sea, or air, but what, a by some the distinction of clean and unclean respect them as stratagem or other, he can put in subjection under him.
, as ?
first permission to eat them was given to Noah and his or his tongue with a cord which thou lettest down? sons, and is plainly a distinct branch of power, from Canst thou put an hook into his nose? or bore his jaw what God grants when he tells them, ? • The fear of through with a spear? Will he make many supplications you, and the dread of you, shall be upon every beast of unto thee? Will he speak soft words unto thee? Wilt the earth,' &c.
thou take him for a servant for ever?' All these questions, If it be asked, For what reason God should indulge how expressive soever of the several qualities of this Noah and his posterity in the eating of flesh after the portentous creature, may nevertheless be answered in flood, which he had never permitted before it ? the most the affirmative, viz. That how large soever in bulk, and probable answer is—That he therefore did it, because how tremendous soever in strength this animal may be, 1 Gen. ii. 17, 18.
% Gen, ix. 2.
yet the Greenland fishermen, who every year return with fruits, when he introduces Pythagoras, a great inquirer into the ancient and primitive practices of the world, expressing himself
* Matt. xix. 8.
* In Gen. Quaest. 55. p. 44. in this manner:
Job xli. 1., &c.
a This superiority of man over all other creatures, his holding Was blessed with every useful fruit, aud all
them in subjection, and making them subservient to his uses, Those flowery herbs which beautify the ground,
we find elegantly described by Oppianus, in the following
There is not in the universe a nobler thing than man,
The deathless sons of heaven alone before him take the van ;
The potentate of all below, he holds his regal rod,
And earth with all its habitants bend to his lofty nod.
How manya fury-breathing brute, that roars the mountain brow,
Has fallen a prey to ravenous birds, struck by his deadly blow; On every land peace raised her golden throne.
How many of these winged tribes that sweep the clouds and sky, Met. 50. 15
Are victims to the shaft of death, aimed by his piercing eye. Porphyry, in his book on Abstinence, asserts the same thing, Though pigmy be his form, indeed, yet the lion's lordly might, namely, that in the golden age no flesk of beasts was eaten, and
Can't free it from his well-wrought snares, por th' eagle's airy he is to be pardoned in what he adds afterwards, namely, that
Ensure it freedom from his grasp; the strongest feel his chain, war and famine introduced this practice. He was not acquainted
The elephant, whose monstrous bulk rolls o'er the eastern plain, with Genesis; he knew not that God's order to Noah after the
Must yield to him its boundless strength-a slave for evermore flood was, 'that every living creature should be meat for him.'-
The patient labour-bearing mule, must still its fate deplore. Edwards' Surrey of Religion, vol. 1. p. 117.
B. 5. Halieuticon.
A. M. 1657. A. C. 2347; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A, M. 2257. A. C. 3134. GEN. CH. viii. 20. TO THE END OF CH. is. its spoils, do literally perform what our author seems to Armenia, did not remove from thence, nor had any conaccount impossible; they l 'fill his skin with barbed cern in the work of Babel, and so falls not under the irons, and his head with fish-spears, and so they play historian's consideration; or that, if he did remove with with him as with a bird ; they bind him for their maidens, the rest into the plains of Shinar, being now superanand part him among their merchants.'
nuated and unfit for action, the administration of things In short, God has implanted in all creatures a fear was committed to other hands, which made his name and and dread of man. 2 This is the thing which keeps authority the less taken notice of. wolres out of our towns and lions out of our streets; and It must be acknowledged, however, that the design of though the sharpness of hunger, or violence of rage, may the sacred ponman is to be very succinct in his account at certain times make them forget their natural instinct of the affairs of this period, because he is hastening to (as the like causes have sometimes divested man of his the history of Abraham, the great founder of the Jewish reason), yet no sooner are these causes removed, but nation, and whose life and adventures he thinks himself they return to their ordinary temper again, without concerned, upon that account, to relate more at large. pursuing their advantage, or combining with their fellow- However this be, it is certain, from the tenor of his brutes to rise up in rebellion against man, their lord and writing, that he is far from leading us into any suspicion master.
of his having a private malignity to Noah's character. Some modern writers of no small note are clearly He informs us, that, amidst the corruption of the of opinion, that the Ararat where the ark rested was antediluvian world, he preserved himself imnaculate, mount Caucasus, not far from China, where Noah and and did therefore ‘ find favour in the sight of God,' and some part of his family settled, without travelling to
was admitted to the honour of his immediate converse : Shinar
, or having any hand in the building of Babel ; that, to preserve him from the general destruction, God and the arguments they alleged for the support of this instructed him how to build a vessel of security, undertook opinion are such as these :- That the Mosaic history is the care and conduct of it himself, and, amidst the ruins of altogether silent as to the peopling of China at the dis- a sinking world, landed it safe on one of the mountains persion, and wholly confines itself within the bounds of of Armenia ; that, as soon as the deluge was over, God the then known world; that the Chinese language and accepted of his homage and sacrifice, and not only writing are so entirely different from those among us
renewed to him the same charter which he had originally (introduced by the confusion at Babel), that it cannot granted to our first progenitor, but over and above that, well be supposed they were ever derived from them; gave him an enlargement of his diet which he had not and that taking their first king Fohi and Noah to be the granted to any before; and with him made an everlasting same person) there are several 6 traditions relating to covenant, never to destroy the world by water any more, them, wherein they seem to agree, that the reign of Fohi whereof he constituted his bow in the clouds to be á coincides with the times of Noah, and the lives of his glorious symbol. In this point of light it is that Moses successors correspond with the men of the same ages has all along placed the patriarch's character; and recorded in Scripture ; and from hence they infer, that therefore, if in the conclusion of it he was forced to the true reason why Moses makes so little mention of shade it with one act of intemperance, this, we may Noah, in the times subsequent to the flood, is this, That reasonably conclude, proceeded from no other passion be lived at too great a distance, and had no share in the but his love of truth ; and to every impartial reader must transactions of the nations round about Shinar, to whom be d a strong argument of his veracity, in that he has alone, after the dispersion of mankind, he is known to confine his history. This indeed is solving the difficulty Chinese empire was not founded at an earlier period than the
Jones has shown it to be in the highest degree probable that the at once: but then, as this opinion is only conjectural, 12th century before the Christian era; and thai the people themthe histories and records of China are of a very uncer- selves, far from being aborigines, are a mixed race descended tain and precarious authority, and such as are reputed from Hindoos and Tartars. During the life of Noah, he and his genuine of no older date than some few centuries before family, are supposed to have lived agricultural lives, in the fer
tile plain of Armenia, at the foot of mount Ararat, which the birth of Christ, the major part of the learned world according to Tournefort, is a most delightful region- still famous has supposed, either that Noah, settled in the country of for its vines ; and there the venerable patriarch died 350 years after
the deluge, but long before the impious rebellion of part of his deJob xii. 5, &c. ? Miller's History of the Church, b. 1.c. 1. scendants in the plain Shinar, which introduced into the world
the confusion of tongues. Where Dr Shuckford met with the a Dr Alix, in his Reflections on the Books of the Holy Scrip- Chinese history which he quotes I know not ; but Sir William tares. Mr Whiston, in his Chronology of the Old Testament. Jones has proved, by the testimony of Confucius himself, that no Strekford in his Connection, and Bedford, in his Scripture historical monument then existed in China of events of an earlier Chemology.
date than 1100 years before our era. The stories of Fohi's | Thus, in the Chinese history, Fohi is said to have had no conception by the rainbow, and his having reared seven sorts of father, which agrees well enough with Noah, because the memory animals for sacrifice, certainly do not appear to have been derived
bis father might be lost in the deluge; that Fohi's mother by tradition from Noah's preservation in the ark; but that traconceived him as she was encompassed with a rainbow, which dition passed into China from Hindostan, where, in the most bems to allude to the rainbow's first appearing to Noah after the ancient writings, many accounts of the deluge are still preserved. finod; and that Fohi carefully bred up seven sorts of creatures -See Asiatic Researches, vol. ii. mem. 25. and Hales's Analysis, which he used to sacrifice to the supreme Spirit of heaven and &c. vol. 1.- ED. Farth, which is an imperfect tradition of Noah's taking into the d To confirm in some measure, the truth of this account ark of every clean beast by sevens, and of his making use of none of Moses, we have an heathen story, which seems to have but these in all his burnt-offerings. - Shuckford's Connect. b. 2. sprung from some tradition concerning it; for it tells us, that € There seems to be no foundation whatever for the hypothesis on a certain day, Myrrha, wife, or (as others say) nurse to What Noah was the founder of the Chinese monarchy, or indeedHammon, and mother of Adonis, having her son in her company, that he ever saw the country known by that name. Sir William found Cynistas sleeping in his tent, all uncovered, and in an
A. M. 1657. A. r. 2347; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M. 2257. A. C. 3154. GEN. CH. viii. 20. TO THE END OF CH. ix. interspersed the faults with the commendations of his that the age and infirmity of his body, or the deep conworthies, and, through his whole history, drawn no one cern and melancholy of his mind, made him liable to be character so very fair, as not to leave some blemishes, overcome with a very little ; we may adventure to say, some instances of human frailty still abiding on it. And that he drank plentifully without impeaching his sobriety; indeed, if we consider the thing rightly, we shall find it and that, while he was asleep, he chanced to be uncov. an act of singular kindness, and benefit to us, that God ered, without any stain upon his modesty. There is a has ordered the faults and miscarriages of his saints so great deal of difference between satiety and intemper. 1 constantly to be recorded in Scripture ; since they are between refreshing nature and debauching it; and! written for our instruction,' to remind us of our frailty, considering withal that the fashion of men's habits was at and to alarm our caution and fear.
that time loose, (as they were likewise in subsequent ! Noah, we read, had escaped the pollutions of the old ages before the use of breeches was found out) such an world, and approved his fidelity to God in every trying accident might have easily happened without the imputajuncture; and yet we see him here falling of his own tion of any harm. accord, and shamefully overcome in a time of security 5 The Jewish doctors are generally of opinion, that and peace, when he had no temptations to beset him, Canaan," having first discovered his grandfather's nakednor any boon companions to allure him to excess : and ness, made himself merry therewith, and afterwards therefore his example calls perpetually upon him that exposed it to the scorn of his father. Whoever the perthinketh he standeth, to take heed lest he fall.' More son was, it is certain that he is called the younger, or especially it informs us, that 36 wine is a mocker, strong little son of Noah, which cannot well agree with Ham, drink is raging, and whosoever is deceived thereby is because he was neither little, nor his younger son, but not wise ;' and therefore it exhorts, in the words of the the second, or middlemost, as he is always placed :' nor
3 • Look not thou upon wine when it is red, does it seem so pertinent to the matter in hand, to menwhen it giveth its colour in the cup, when it moveth tion the order of his birth, but very fit (if he speaks of itself aright. At the last it will bite like a serpent, and his grandson) to distinguish him from the rest. So that, sting like an adder. Thine eyes shall behold strange if it was Canaan who treated his grandsire in this unworwomen, and thine heart shall utter perverse things : yea, thy manner, the application of the curse to him, who was thou shalt be as he that lieth down in the midst of the first in the offence, is far from being a mistake in Noah. sea, and as he that lieth upon the top of a mast.' It is no random anathema, which he let fly at all adven
There is not however all the reason that is imagined tures, but a cool, deliberate denunciation, which proto suppose that Noah was drunk to any such excessive ceeded not from a spirit of indignation, but of prophecy. degree. The same word which is here used occurs * in The history indeed takes notice of this malediction, another place in this book of Genesis ; where we read, immediately upon Noah's awaking out of his sleep, and that Joseph's brethren drank and were merry with him ;' being informed of what had happened ; but this is occaand yet the circumstances of the entertainment will not sioned by its known brevity, which (as we have often suffer us to think that they indulged themselves in remarked) relates things as instantly successive, when & any excess, in the presence of him whom, as yet, they considerable space of time ought to interfere. In all knew to be no other than the governor of Egypt. And,
* Calmet's Dict, on the word Canaan. Gen. ix, 24. in like manner, if we may be allowed to take the word
? Patrick's Commentary. here in an innocent sense, its import will only be, that by him; and, as some have imagined, that the tree of knowNoah drank of the wine plentifully perhaps, but not to a ledge of good and evil was a vine; so hy the description giren debauch, and so fell asleep. For we must observe, that thereof, and the fatal consequences attending it, there seems to Moses's design is, not to accuse Noah of intemperance,
be a plain allusion to it, and some reason to believe, that it was but only to show upon what occasion it was that the and Noah was exposed to derision.—Targ. Jonath.
one and the same tree, by which the nakedness both of Adam Canaanites, whom the people under his command were b Interpreters have invented several other reasons, why the now going to engage, were accursed, and reprobated by curse, which properly belonged to Ham, was inflicted on his son God, even from the days of Noah, and consequently in Canaan; as, Ist, When Canaan is mentioned, Ham is avot more likelihood to fall into their hands.
| exempted from the malediction, but rather more deeply plunged
into it, because parents are apt to be more affected with their Without perplexing ourselves therefore to find out children's misfortunes then their own ; especially if themselves such excuses as several interpreters have devised; as, brought the evil upon them by their own fault or folly: 2dly, that Noah was unacquainted with the nature of the vine God having blessed the three sons of Noah at their going in general, or with the effects of this in particular, or
out of the ark, it was not proper that Noah's curse should interfere with the divine blessing, but very proper that it should be
transferred to Canaan, in regard to the future extirpation of the 1 Cor. x, 12. • Prov, xx. 1. * Prov. xxiii, 31, &c.
people which were to descend from him. But, 3dly, Some ima+ Ch. xliii. 34.
gine that there is here an ellipsis, or defect of the word father, indecent posture. She ran immediately, and informed Hammon since such relative words are frequently omitted, or understand of it; he gave notice of it to his brothers, who, to prevent the in Scripture. Thus, Matt, iv. 21, James of Zebedee, for the son confusion which Cynistas might be in to find himself naked, of Zebedee; John xix. 25, Mary of Cleopas, for the wife of covered him with something. Cynistas, understanding what Cleopas; and Acts vii. 16, Emmor of Sychem, for the father of had passed, cursed Adonis, and pursued Myrrha into Arabia; Sychem, which our translation rightly supplies; and, in like where,
after having wandered nine months, she was changed into manner, Canaan may be put for the father of Canaan, as the a tree, which bears myrrh. Hammon and Ham are the same Arabic translation has it, that is, Ham, as the Septuagint here person, and so are Adonis and Canaan.--Calmet's Dictionary on render it. And though Ham had more sons, yet he may hero the word Ham.
be described by his relation to Canaan, because in him the curse a It is a Jewish tradition or allegory, that the vine which Noah was more fixed and dreadful, reaching to his utter extirpation, planted was not of ordinary terrestrial growth, but was carried whilst the rest of Ham's posterity, in after ages, were blessed down the river out of Paradise, or at least out of Eden, and found with the saving knowledge of the gospel.-Poolc s Annotations.
A. M. 1657. A. C. 2317 ; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M. 2257. A. C. 3154. GEN. CH. viii. 20. TO THE END OF CH. ix. probability these predictions of Noah, which point out conquered that part of Asia where the posterity of Shem the different fates of his posterity, were such as? we find had planted themselves; that both Alexander and Cæsar Jacob pronouncing over his sons a little before his were masters of Jerusalem, and made all the countries death; and it is not unlikely that the common opinion, thereabout tributary? “You," says Justin Martyr, of Noah's dividing the earth among his, might take its (speaking to Trypho the Jew concerning his nation,) original from these last words that we read of hin, which who are descended from Shem, according as God had trere certainly accomplished in their event.
appointed, came into the land of the children of Canaan The curse upon Canaanb is, that he should be a servant and made it your own; and, in like manner, according to Shem: and, 2 about 800 (or, according to Dr Hales, to the Divine decree, the sons of Japhet (the Romans) 1546) years after this, did not the Israelites, descend- have broken in upon you, seized upon your whole counauts of Shem, take possession of the land of Canaan, try, and still keep possession of it. Thus the sons of subdue thirty of its kings, destroy most of its inhabitants, Shem,” says he,“ have overpowered and reduced the Lay heavy tributes upon the remainder, and, by oppres- Canaanite; and the sons of Japhet have subdued the sons sions of one kind or other, oblige some to flee into of Shem, and made them their vassals; so that the posEgypt, others into Africa, and others into Greece? He terity of Canaan are become, in a literal sense, servants was doomed likewise to be a servant to Japhet; and of servants." did not the Greeks and Romans, descended from Japhet, But, in the blessing bestowed upon Shem, why the utterly destroy the relics of Canaan, who fled to Tyre, God of Shem, you will say, and not the God of Japhet? bruilt by the Sidonians; to 'Thebes, built by Cadmus; and They were both of them equally observant of their father, to Carthage, built by Dido? For who has not heard of and joined in the pious office that they did him. The the conquests of the Romans over the Africans? preference, if any, was due to the first-born; and there
The blessing upon Japhet is, that his territories should fore we may presume, that if the blessing here, peculiar be enlarged:' and can we think otherwise, when (as we to Shem, had been any part of a temporal covenant, or shall show anon) not only all Europe, and the Lesser any thing in the power of his father to bestow, he would Asia, but Media likewise, and part of Armenia, Iberia, have conferred it on Japhet. But as the apostle to the Albania, and the vast regions towards the north, which Hebrews tells us, that he was heir of righteousness aeiently the Scythians, but now the Tartars, inhabit, fell which is by faith,' he foresaw that in Seth's family God to the share of his posterity? It was likewise declared, would settle his church; that of his seed Christ should that he should dwell in the tents of Shem; and is it not be born according to the flesh; and that the covenant notorious that the Greeks and Romans invaded and which should restore man to himself and to his Maker,
should be conveyed through his posterity. And this "Gen. xlix. * Patrick's Commentary in locum.
accounts for the preference given to Shem; for Noah 3 Patrick's Commentary. That which may confirm us in this opinion is,— That Jacob, spake not of his own choice, but declared the counsel of v den he calleth his children together, acquaints them, that his God, who had now, as he frequently did afterwards, purpose is to tell them that which shall befall them in the last chosen the younger before the elder.' days;' and that he does not always presage blessings, but some- Thus it appears upon inquiry, that these prophecies of times ill luck to their posterity, and in the same manner that Noah were not the fumes of indigested liquor, but? the Feah does) now and then drops a note of his displeasure, accordng 3 their behaviour has been; for thus he says of Simeon and words of truth and soberness: and though their sense Levi
, in regard to the slaughter of the Shechemites, "Cursed be was not so apparent at the time of their being protheir anger, for it was fierce, and their wrath, for it was cruel,' nounced, yet their accomplishment has now explained (ka, xlix. 7.
their meaning, and verified that observation of the apostle Dr Hales, who perfectly agrees with our author, that the urse was pronounced on Canaan only, and not on 'Ham and (which very probably alludes to the very predictions now kis descendants generally, and who has a long dissertation on the before us). 'No prophecy is of any private interpretasubject
, second edition, pp. 344—348, justly remarks, that the tion, for the prophecy came not of old time by the will carse denounced against Canaan's posterity, to be servant of of man, but holy men of God spake as they were moved servants,' the lowest of servants, even slaves, to their brethren in general, did not affect individuals, nor even nations, so long
by the Holy Ghost.' as they continued righteous. In Abraham's days Melchisedek, whose name was expressive of his character, signifyingking & righteousness,' was a worthy and revered 'priest of the most Luigh God.' And Abimelech, whose name denotes 'parental king,' pleaded the integrity of his heart, and righteousness of
CHAP. IV.-Of the Prohibition of Blood. labs nation before God; and his plea was accepted. Yet they sypears to have been Canaanites. (See Gen. xiv. 18—20; xv. The grant which God was pleased to give Noah and his 16: 11. 9.) At the same time the impieties and abomina- posterity, to eat the flesh of all living creatures, has this times of their neighbours, in the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, remarkable restriction in it, " But the flesh, with the life Un drew down the signal vengeance of Heaven in their overthrow,-Ed.
thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall you not eat.'' Procopius (on the Vandal war, b. ii. c. 10) tells us, that, in Whether this prohibition related to the eating of things the province of Tingitana, and in the very ancient city of Tingis, which was founded by them, there are two great pillars to be
* Dial. contra Tryp. Jud. p. 288. teen, of white stone, erected near a large fountain, with an * Bp. Sherlock's Use and Intent of Prophecy, p. 103. Inscription in Phænician characters, to this purpose,
Heb, xi, 7. Acts xxvi. 25. Gen, ix. 4. people preserved by flight, from that rover Jesus, the son of Nave, d Mr Bruce has given a very satisfactory account of the pracwho pursued us." And what makes it very probable that they tice of eating blood in Abyssinia
. This custom, so prevalent in tent their flight this way, is the great agreement, and almost several places, is forbidden in the Scriptures. A recital of the identity, of the Punic with the Canaanitish, or Hebrew language. narrative will probably suggest to the reader the reasons of the _Calmet': Dictionary on the word Canaan.
prohibition, Mr Bruce tells us, that not long after our losing
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