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A, M. 2919. A. C. 1055; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M. 4341. A. C. 1070.2 SAM. i--xix. and therefore all the mischiefs of the civil war are charge that may be formed against him, and to defeat the able upon him : nor can David be blamed for receiving resolutions that may be taken to his prejudice. But his own right, even though it was tendered to him by the whether these comparisons may come up to the case hand of a bad man. The truth is, David did not delude before us or no, it was certain, at this juncture, AbsaAbner from his master, but Abner made the first overture lom's business was to be upon his guard. The unjust of his service to him; and as this was no unfavourable war which he had declared against his father, gave his opportunity of uniting the two contending kingdoms, father a right to treat him as an open enemy, and to which providence seemed to have thrown in his way, employ either force or artifice against him ; nor can this David had been perfidious, not only to his own inter- conduct of his be blamed, unless we should say, that est, but to the establishment of the general peace of when kings are engaged in war, they are forbidden to the nation, had he not fallen in with it. He, no disguise their true designs, even though it be a thing doubt, was privy to the cause of Abner’s disgust: notorious, that upon this disguise the practice of stratabut, without approving either of his crime or his treason, gems in war, which were never yet accounted unlawful, he might lawfully make use of the traitor; nay, and con- is entirely founded. fer on him some tokens of his favour too, in considera- The truth is, 5 Absalom, as a traitor, a murderer, a tion of the benefits he had received from him, and of rebel, and, as far as in him lay, a parricide, had forsome commendable qualities, either natural or political, feited all the rights of society, but more especially as a that he had observed in him. The instrument is not to rebel: for a rebel, who sets himself to overturn the be regarded in all actions, and even a bad man, when established government, order, and peace of any commuhe does good services, may merit a reward, and be nity, does, by that hostile attempt, actually divest received with some approbation.
himself of all social rights in that community. And No man indeed should engage another in a base or consequently David could be no more guilty of perfidy, wicked action; ? because, whether he comunits the thing in forming a design to supplant Absalom, nor Husbai himself, or employs another to do it, the crime is the guilty of villany in undertaking to put it in execution, same ; but it is not so, says : Grotius, if a person freely than that man can be said to be guilty of sin, who offers himself, without any solicitation or persuasion to deceives a madman, and turns him away from murdering it. In this case, it is not unlawful to use him as an instru- his best friends. ment, in order to execute what is confessedly lawful for The short of the matter is, Hushai's instructions were us to do: and, as it is not contrary to the law of arms to negotiate David's interest among the rebels as well to receive a deserter, who quits the enemy's party and as he could. This he could not do without seeming to embraces ours, so we cannot conceive how David could act in a contrary character; and in order to effect this, become culpable in taking the advantage of Abner's there was a 'necessity for his concealing himself; and quarrel with Ishbosheth, when, without any application conceal himself he could not, without some degree of of his, he voluntarily sent to him, and offered him his dissimulation; and therefore the end which he proposed service, and when the good providence of God seems to in what he did, namely, the prevention of that long train have employed the passion and angry resentment of that of mischiefs which always attends a civil war, was sufihaughty general, in order to bring about his wise designs, cient to justify the means which he took to accomplish and by the union of the two kingdoms, prevent the effu- it. For, though it is to be wished with • Cicero, that sion of much blood,
all lying and dissimulation were utterly banished from But what shall we say in excuse for his perfidy, when human life; yet, as others have maintained, that a benewe find him putting his friend Hushai upon acting such ficial falsehood is better than a destructive truth, a case a part as but badly became a man of honour ; upon may be so circumstantiated, as to make dissimulation, going, and offering his service to his son Absalom, on which as 'Lord Bacon says, “is nothing else but a purpose to betray him, or give him bad counsel ? The necessary dependant upon silence, highly necessary; words of David are these :—*• If thou return to the city, and a lie, which otherwise would be blamable in a and say unto Absalom, I will be thy servant, О king; slave, will deserve commendation (says Quintiliau as I have been thy father's servant hitherto, so will i when a wise man makes use of it, to save his country now also be thy servant; then mayest thou for me defeat by deceiving his enemy.” Now, as Hushai's whole dethe counsels of Abithophel.' But David, by these words, sign was to deceive an open and declared eneniy, who say some interpreters, did not advise Hushai to betray can doubt, but that he was at full liberty, by his address Absalom, or, for his sake, to violate the laws of friend and subtilty, to disconcert the measures of those, whom ship, but purely to go and join himself to Absalom, all agree, that had he been so minded, he bad license who, by this time, had assumed the title of king, and to attack with open violence ? 'To overcome an enemy could not properly be addressed without calling him indeed by valour, rather than art, sounds more gallant. so, in order to destroy the counsels of Ahithophel, just and by some has been thought a more a reputable way as a general sends his spies into the enemy's camp, to know what passes there; or as a king keeps, in foreign
* The History of the Life of King David, vol. 3.
. Offic, b. 3. c. 15. Serm. Fidel. b. 6. courts, his envoys, to gain intelligence of the designs
Quintil. Instit. Orat, b. 12. c. 1.
• Puffendorfi's Law of Nature, b. 4. c. 1; and Grotius's i Calmet's Commentary on 2 Sam. iii. 12.
Rights of Peace, b. 3. c. 1. * It signifies nothing whether you yourself commit crime, or a Thus when Perseus, the Macedonian king, was deceived engage another person to do it on your account.-- August. in by the hopes of peace, the old senators disallowed the act, as inmoribus Manichæ.
consistent with Roman bravery; saying that their ancestors • On the Law of War, b. 3. chap. 1. By the right of war we prosecuted their wars by valour, not craft, not like the subtie shelter a deserter. 4 2 Sam, xv. 34.
Carthaginians, or cunning Grecians, among whom it was a
A. M. 2949. A. C. 1055 ; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M. 4341. A. C. 1070. 2 SAM. I-xis. of conquest, but since the laws of nature and arms have and this, as is supposed, not so much out of reverence made no difference, and those of humanity and mercy to the sacred symbol of God's presence, as out of diffiseem to incline to that side wherein there is likely to be dence of his providence, as unable to preserve it from the least blood shed, Hushai may be said to have acted overturning. the worthy patriot, as well as the faithful subject, in The truth is, this ark had so long continued in obbreaking the force of an unnatural rebellion, and in scurity, that the people, in a manner, had lost all sense putting it into his royal master's mouth to say, 'the of a divine power residing in it, and therefore approachLord is known to execute judgment; the ungodly are ed it with irreverence. This is implied in David's extrapped in the work of their own hands. They are sunk hortation to Zadok and Abiathar, after this misfortune down in the pit that they made ; in the same net, which upon Uzzah. 6+ Ye are the chief of the fathers of the they hid privily, are their own feet taken.?
Levites; sanctify yourselves therefore, both ye, and Thus, though we are not obliged to vindicate David your brethren, that you may bring up the ark of the in every passage of his life, and think some of the crying Lord God of Israel, unto the place that I have presins he was guilty of utterly inexcusable; yet if we ex-pared for it; for because ye did it not at the first, the cept these, we cannot but think, that although he was a Lord our God made a breach upon us, for that we very tender and indulgent parent, yet he was no en- sought him not after the due order.' What wonder, then, courager of vice in his own family, or a tame conniver if God being minded to testify his immediate presence at it in others, had he not been restrained by reasons of with the ark, to retrieve the ancient honour of that state, sometimes, from punishing it; that he was true to sacred vessel, and to curb all licentious profanations his promises, just in his distributions, and prudent, of it for the future, should single out one that was the though not crafty, in his military transactions ; “ of a most culpable of many, one, who in three instances singular presence of mind, (as 2 Josephus speaks of was then violating his commands, to be a monument of him,) to make the best of what was before him; and of his displeasure against either a wilful ignorance or a as sharp a foresight for improving all advantages, and rude contempt of his precepts, be they ever so seemobviating all difficulties, that were like to happen;" ingly small; that by such an example of terror, he tender to all persons in distress, kind to his friends, might inspire both priests and people with a sacred forgiving to his enemies; and when at any time he was dread of his inajesty, and a profound veneration for his forced to use severity, it was only in retaliation of what mysteries? other people had done to him.
God indeed is left to his own pleasure, what signs he Happy were it for us, if we could account for the shall think fit to give to his people, upon any occasion, operations of God with the same facility that we can for for their good; but the more arbitrary and uncommon the actions of his saints ; but his counsels are a great any sign is, the more it seems to have proceeded from deep, and his judgments, just though they be, are some- God. Though therefore the sound of people's going times obscure, and past finding out. For what shall we upon the tops of trees, be a thing not so congruous to say to the fate of Uzzah? Or what tolerable cause can our conceptions, yet it will not therefore follow, that it we assign for his sudden and untimely end. It was now was not the real sign which God gave David, because near seventy years since the Israelites had carried the the stranger the phenomenon was, the greater assurance ark from place to place, and so long a disuse had made it conveyed of the divine interposition in his favour. them forget the manner of doing it. In conformity to Nor can the practicableness of the thing be disputed, what they had heard of the Philistines, they put it into since it was confessedly an host of angels (who could a new cart or wagon; but this was against the express move on the tops of trees, as well as plain ground) that direction of the law, ' which ordered it to be borne upon made this noise of an army's marching. men's shoulders. It is commonly supposed, that Uzzah There is no reason, however, to acquiesce in this conwas a Levite, though there is no proof of it from Scrip-struction only. The word beroche, which we render ture; but supposing he was, he had no right to attend tops, in several places in Scripture, signifies the beginupon the ark; that province, by the same law, was re- ning of things likewise ; and in this acceptation, the strained to those Levites only who were of the house of of the sign which God gave David will be this,—“When Kohath: nay, put the case he had been a Kohathite by thou hearest a sound, as it were of many men marching birth, yet he had violated another command which pro- at the entrance of the place where the mulberry trees are hibited even these Levites, though they carried it by planted, then do thou make ready to fall upon thine staves upon their shoulders, "upon pain of death, to enemy; for this noise, which is occasioned by the ministouch it with their hands : so that here was a threefold try of my angels, goes before thee, both to conduct thee transgression of the divine will in this method of pro- in thy way, and to inject terror into thine adversaries." ceeding. The ark, as some say, by Uzzah's direction, But how plausible soever this interpretation may seem, was placed in a cart; Uzzah, without any proper desig- there is some reason to suspect, that the other word nation, adventures to attend it; when he thought it in bochim, which our translation calls mulberry trees, is in danger of falling, officiously he put forth his hand, and reality the proper name of a place. The prophet laid hold on it, all violations of the divine commands, Isaiah has a plain allusion to this piece of history, and
seems to confirm what we here suggest. “The Lord,' Ps. ix. 15, 16. a Jewish Antiquities, b. 7. c. 12. says he,' shall rise up as in mount Perazim ; he shall be * Num, vii, 9. Num, vii. 9. * Num, iv, 15.
wroth as in the valley of Gibeon;' that is, he shall degreater glory to overcome their enemies by treachery, than true valour. Livy, b. 42, c. 47. And it was a known principle of Alexander's, that he scorned to steal a victory.- Plutarch de 6 ] Chron, xv. 12, 13. Patrick's Commentary, in locum. Alexandro, and Q. Curtius, b. 4. c. 13.
$ Is. xxviji. 21.
A. M. 2949. A. C. 1055; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M. 4341. A. C. 1070. 2 SAM. i-xix. stroy his enemies, as he did the Philistines at Baal-Pera- | us of one stone of great value in the middle of the zim, under David, and the Canaanites at Gibeon, under crown, which he calls a sardonyx; and as we may supJoshua : what hinders then, but that Beroche Bochim may pose that there were other jewels of several kinds placed signify the mountains of Bochim? And so the sense of at their proper distances, these, in proportion as they the words will be,-“When thou hearest a noise, as of heightened the value, must lessen the weight of the crown, many people marching upon the hills, or high places of and verify what the same bistorian tells us of it, namely, Bochim, then thou hast nothing to do, but to fall imme- “ that David wore it constantly on his head afterwards, diately upon the enemy.” Either of these interpretations for an ornament.” clears the text from any seeming absurdity; and I shall There is another difficulty still behind, which relates only observe farther, that from the passage of the above to the weight of Absalom's hair, that in the words of the cited prophet, as well as some expressions in the 18th text is thus expressed :-* *And when he polled his psalın, such as, 1. He sent out his arrows, and scattered head, for it was at every year's end that he polled it; and them; he cast forth lightnings, and destroyed them,' it because the hair was heavy on him, therefore be polled seems very likely that a mighty storm of thunder and it, he weighed the hair of his head at two hundred shekels lightning, of hailstones, and coals of fire, as the psal- after the king's weight.' In the explication of which mist calls it, was assistant to David in the acquisition of words, the sentiments of the learned have been so many this victory.
and various, that, we shall content ourselves with coinIn the account of David's conquest of the Ammonites, menting upon some of the chief of them. the weight of their king's crown seems not a little mon- Those who are of opinion that the words related only strous. The weight of a talent, which, upon the lowest to the cuttings of Absalom's hair, make the two bundred computation, amounts to no less than 123 pounds, is shekels the price, and not the weight of them: and to allowed to be too much for one neck to sustain ; but then this purpose they suppose, that though Absalom himself we should consider, that besides the crown that was might not sell his hair, yet some persons about him usually worn it was customary, in some nations, for kings might do it, in complaisance to the ladies of Jerusalem, to have a vast large ones, even to a size equal to this, who might not think themselves in the fashion, unless either hung, or supported over the throne, where, at their they wore a favourite lock of the prince's. But besides coronation, or upon other solemn occasions, they were the absurdity of the king's son suffering any of his dowont to sit.
mestics to sell his bair, the very words of the text are a The Jewish doctors indeed have a very odd conceit, confutation of this notion, where they tell us, that “ be namely, that David, when he took this crown from weighed the hair of his head ;' whereas, had it been sold, the king of Ammon, hung it up on high by a certain the buyer must have weighed the money, even as Abraloadstone that he had, as if the power of the magnet were ham did when he purchased the field of Ephron. to attract gold as well as iron. But let that be as it will, Others again pretend, that there is a manifest mistake it is but to suppose, that the crown here under debate, crept into the text, which has been occasioned by an was of this larger kind, and that, by some means or ignorant transcriber's inserting one numerical letter for other, it was supported over the king's head while he another, the resch instead of the daleth, that is, two was sitting on his throne, and then there will be an ap- hundred instead of four: but, besides the uncertainty, parent reason for taking the crown from off, or, as the whether the former Hebrews made use of their letters Hebrew words will bear it, “from over the king's head, instead of figures, whereof there is not the least sign or and placing it, in like manner, over David's head, even token in any ancient copies, wherein, I pray, would the to indicate the translation of his kingdom to David. great wonder be, if what was cut off from Absalon's
* It is a common thing, however, in Hebrew, as well as head, to thin and shorten his hair, when it grew too other learned languages, to have the same word signify weighty and troublesome to him, amounted to no more both the weight and value of any thing. And that the than four shekels, which is much about two ounces? And price or worth of the crown is here the meaning of the yet the whole design of this narration seems to portend phrase we have the more reason to think, because men- something more than usual, in this prodigious increase tion is made of an addition of precious stones, which are of Absalom's hair. never estimated by the weight of gold. 'Josephus tells The text, however, does not speak of the cuttings of
the hair, but of the head of hair itself, when it talks of ? Ps. xviii, 14.
the weight of two hundred shekels; and therefore those * Poole's Annotations, and Patrick's Commentary in locum. who take it in this larger sense, are not forgetful to re• Jewish Antiquities, b. 7. c. 7.
mind us, that in those days, bair was accounted a very a The ancients make mention of several such large crowns as great ornament, and the longer it was, the more it was these, which were made for sight more than any thing else. Juvenal, exposing the pride and vanity of some of the chief magistrates esteemed; that Absalom, to be sure, would not fail to at Rome, describes the pomp and splendour of their appearance in nourish his with the utmost care, and to let it grow long these words: “What if he had seen the prætor stand erect in enough, because it contributed so much to the gracefulhis lofty chariot, and towering above the surrounding dust of the ness of his person ; that in after ages, as perhaps they circus, magnificently dressed in an imperial coat, wearing pends did then, men were wont to use much art with their hair
, ant from his shoulders the purple epaulettes of his dædal-wrought and dress it every day with fragrant ointments, in order gown, and on his head a golden crown so vast, that scarce can a human neck support it.” (Sat. 10.) Athenæus (b. 5. c. 8.) de- to make it grow thick and strong ; that the noble guards scribes a crown made of gold, that was four and twenty feet in which attended Solomon, as Josephus informs circumference, and mentions others, that were two, some four, and some five feet deep; as Pliny (b. 33. c. 3.) in like manner, takes notice of some that were of no less than eight pounds' • 2 Sam. xiv. 26.
* Gen. xxiii. 16. weight.- Calmet's Commentary in locum.
• Jewish Antiquities, b. 8. c. 12.
A. M. 2949. a. C. 1055; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M. 4341, A. C. 1070.3 SAM. i-xix. their long hair Nowing about their shoulders, which they Thus have we attempted to solve most of the remarkpowdered with small particles of gold, to make it able difficulties, that either aflect the character of David, sparkle, and glisten against the sun ; and that therefore it or other parts of Scripture account, during this period is not inprobable, that Absalom, who himself was a gay of its history; and may now begin to wave the testimony young man, and wanted none of these helps or improve- of heathen authors, in confirmation of what we may ments, might, in process of time, bring his hair up to the think strange and unaccountable in the sacred records ; weight that the Scripture records, which, according to the because facts of that kind will not so frequently occur ; gold shekel, that was but half as much as the silver, came and the Jewish nation begins now, in the reign of king in no niore, as the learned Bochart endeavours to prove, David, to make so considerable a figure, as to have their than three pounds and two ounces.
affairs either mentioned or alluded to, by the most But since the Scripture says nothing of any such addi- remarkable historians, both Greek and Latin. tions, as ointments, or gold dust, to enhance the weight of the hair ; others, who think this too much for a man that polled his hair once every year, if not oftener, have observed, from the words which we render at every year's end,' that in the original they imply no particular CHAP. III.-Of the Sacred Chronology, and Profane designation of time ; and thence infer, that Absalom did
History during this Period. not weigh his hair so often as once every year, but at this particular time only, when be returned to Jerusalem. Before we enter upon the foreign history of this period, “ He in his exile,” say they, “which lasted about three it may not be improper to take notice of some chronoyears, pretending great sorrow for liis sin, seems to have logical difficulties, that are to be found in the Scripture taken upon him the vow of a Nazarite, until his return;
account of it. The space of time, from the departure one part of which was, that he should not suffer his hair of the children of Israel out of Egypt, to the laying the to be cut for such a determinate timne : but upon his recall foundation of the temple at Jerusalem, is so exactly home, being now discharged from his vow, he ordered stated, that it will adınit of no dispute: For it canje his hair to be cut all clean off, because it was grown
to pass,' says the text, “in the four hundred and fourvery cumbersome to him; which being of so long a
score year, after the children of Israel were come up out growth, anounted to the weight that the sacred history of the land of Egypt, in the month Zif, which is the relates of it.” But this notion of Absalom's Nazaritism second month, that Solomon began to build the house of has no foundation in Scripture, except that lying pre
the Lord:' but then the manner of computing this numtence to his father, when under the cloak of religion, he
ber of years has been various. was minded to conceal his intended rebellion; and from the death of Joshua to the time of Samuel, “ suppose
5 The generality of the Jews who make it 450 years therefore all the superstructure built upon it must necessarily fall.
Others, perceiving that none of these inventions would * i Kings vi. 1. 5 Bedford's Scripture Chronology, b. 5. c. 1. answer the purpose, have endeavoured to solve the diffi- a The chronology of the period here treated of, namely, from culty, by attending to the latter words in the text, two the death of Joshua to the building of the temple, has been much
corrupted in the common Hebrew text; in fact the various parts hundred shekels, after the king's weight:' and, to this are totally irreconcilable, as the efforts of our author to this end purpose, 2 they lay it down as a principle, that, during in the foregoing portion of this chapter clearly shows. The great the reigns of the kings of Judah, there was no variation alterations made in the chronology at a late period by the Jews, in the Hebrew weights, nor were there any that were
and their reasons for so doing, have already been stated, note called the king's: that the difference between the king's | And for the shortening of this period they had the very same
pages 65, 66, on the period from the creation to the deluge. and the common weight did not commence, till after motive; it was indeed a part of the same scheme for raising presome continuance of the Babylonish captivity; that, judices in the minds of their countrymen against the Messiahtowards the end of this captivity, whoever he was that second edition, gives from one of the Jewish rabbis, David
ship of Jesus of Nazareth. Dr Hales, vol. 1. pp. 221, 222, revised these books of Samuel, made mention of such Ganz, a table of period from the exode to the building of the weights as were not properly Hebrew, but such as (after temple, in which they have contrived to crowd the various sixty or seventy years' captivity) the Jews only knew, events within the space of 480 years; but, he adds, the Jewish and these were the Babylonish ; and that therefore, when chronologers were hard set to make out this detail, as Ganz
honestly confesses:-For, 1. “By a curious invention, they inhe comes to mention the weight of Absalom's hair, and cluded the first four servitudes in the years of the judges, who tells us, that it was two hundred shekels, he adds, by put an end to them, contrary to the express declarations of way of explanation, that it was after the king's weight, Scripture, which represent the administrations of the judges, not that is, after the weight of the king of Babylon, whose (Judges ii. 18.) 2. They were forced to allow the fifth servitude
as synchronizing with the servitudes, but as succeeding them, shekel was but the third part of a Hebrew shekel, ' as the to have been distinct from the administration of Jephthah, because best writers upon weights and measures are generally it was too long to be included therein; but they curtailed a year agreed. So that, according to this hypothesis, Absalom's from the Scripture account of that servitude, making it, instead hair, which weighed two hundred Babylonish shekels, year from Ibzan's administration, making it only six, instead of
of eighteen, only seventeen years; and they curtailed another came but in our weight, to about thirty-three ounces; a seven years. 3. They sunk entirely the sixth servitude, to the quantity which those who deal in that commodity bave Philistines, of forty years, because it was too long to be contained not unfrequently met with upon several women's heads ; Saul's reign of forty years, (Acts xiii. 21.) to two years only! and therefore what brings this long contested story, at The dishonesty of the whole contrivance could be equalled only Jeast, within the bounds of a fair probability.
by its absurdity; furnishing internal evidence that the period of
four hundred and eighty years, foisted into the Hebrew text of ' 2 Sam. xv. 7, &c. * Calmet's Commentary in locum. ' Ibid. | 1 Kings, is itself a forgery." We have given, at page 396, Dr
A. M. 2949. A. C. 1055; OR, ACCORDING TO HALES, A. M. 4341. A. C. 1070. 2 SAM. 1-xix. the difference, from the departure out of Egypt, to the that Joshua divided the land to them by lot, God gave first beginning of the temple, to be 597 years; but this them judges for about the space of four hundred and fifty account is 117 more than what we find in Scripture. years, until Samuel the prophet.' But now, if there be · Josephus expressly tells us, that when Solomon began 450 years from the division of the land of Canaan, which that mighty work, it was 592 years from the coming of happened in the seventh year of Joshua's government, the Israelites out of Egypt; but then it is presumed, to the time of the government, or even of the death of that he (as well as the other Jews) reckons the years of the Samuel, there must be many more than 480 years in the oppressors apart ; whereas they ought to be included in whole interval from the departure out of Egypt to the the years of the judges, who delivered the people from building of the temple. that bondage ; for, it is but looking into the Scripture To solve this difficulty, some bave imagined, that the account, and we shall see that, a before Othniel, Israel words peta tauta, after that, which are found in the was oppressed eight years ; before Ehud, eighteen; be- twentieth verse, should be placed at the beginning fore Deborah, twenty ; before Gideon, seven; before of the seventeenth, and then the sense will be, that, Jephthah, eighteen; and before Samson, forty; now, from God's choosing our fathers, to the time of the adding all these together, we shall find that they amounted judges, were 450 years ; for, from Isaac's birth, say they, to 111 years ; which, if joined to the years of the judges to the departure of Israel out of Egypt, are 405 years ; will make the particular years of this period far exceed they wandered in the wilderness 40 years ; and the land the general; but, by being included in the time assigned was divided by lot seven years after that; so that all for the government of the judges, they make that par- these put together, make 452 years, which the Apostle ticular and general account of the years agree very expresses by the round sum of 450. But this apparently rightly.
is not the sense of the apostle, who, in his discourse to There is another difference between this account in the people, goes on gradually and methodically thus : the first book of Kings, and what the apostle affirms in God chose our fathers; he brought them out of Egypt; the Acts of the Apostles, namely, that, after the time he led them in the wilderness forty years ; he divided
the land ; and then he gave them judges,' &c. 4 Others Jewish Antiquities, b. 8. c. 2.
therefore have fallen into a different way of computation, 2 Millar's History of the Church, c. 1. p. 4. * Acts xiii. 20. by making the years of the judges and oppressors disHaļes' table and computation of the period from Joshua to the tinct; for, the years of the judges, say they, until Saelection of Saul to the kingdom, which is there shown to be 498 muel's time, are 339; the years of the tyrants are lll; years, and we now subjoin his table of the succeeding period, which, put together, make exactly 450 : and this kind of from the commencement of the regal state till the revolt of the Ten Tribes, 120 years:
reckoning the apostle might mention, though he did not Years. B. C. entirely approve of it; and therefore we find him intro
ducing it with an ós, that is, after a manner, or, as sovie 1. Saul
will have it, who compute the years of the oppressors as Saul defeats the Ammonites
1110 distinct from the years of the judges, though in reality his first offence
1108 they ought to be included in one another. Jonathan defeats the Philistines
There is still a farther difficulty, which arises from Saul's second offence }
1100 David born
comparing the scripture chronology, with the genealogies kills Goliath
in the book of Ruth. From the entrance into the land marries Michal
1075 of Canaan to the building of the temple, were 440 years : first flight to Gath
now, if out of this, we subtract for David's life, 70 years, second flight to Gath
1071 Saul's third offence
and for that part of Solomon's reign which was before 2. David
the foundation of the temple, four years, the remainder will takes Jebus
1063 be 366 ; and yet for these 366 years, we have four genePhilistine war
1061 rations only, for Salmon begat Boaz of Rahab; Boaz Ark brought home
1060 Nathan's prophecy of the Messiah the
begat Obed of Ruth ; Obed begat Jesse ; and Jesse beson of David
gat David, which at a time when the age of man was David's first offence
1052 reduced to the compass of seventy or eighty years, is a Solomon born
thing almost impossible. But, as it is not certain, that Absalom's and Sheba's rebellions
the lives of all men were shortened at the time when the David's second offence
1032 Adonijah's rebellion
Israelites murmured in the wilderness, forasmuch as the 3. Solomon
1030 reason for cutting them off' so soon (even to prevent their Temple begun
1027 entering into the land of promise) was peculiar to that finished
1020 Tadmor built
generation, and might not affect others; so the lives of
1006 Temples on the mount of corruption
others might be extended much longer, until the days of
David, and especially in that family, which God had The revolt
120 990 honoured so highly as to appoint, that in it his blessed
Son should be born. The reigns of Saul, David, and Solomon, were forty years each, (Acts xiii. 21; 2 Sam. v. 4;1 Kings xi. 42.) which deter
According to this account, we may suppose that mines the length of the period. But the dates of detail are not noticed Salmon might be about twenty years old when be enterin Scripture. They may, however, be collected from incidental ed into Canaan, and Rahab, whom he married to be circumstances, and from the series of events, to a considerable degree of exactness, not differing, perhaps, above a year more or 4 See Grotius and Usher,
5 Ps. xc, 10. less from the truth.-Hales' Analysis, v. 2. pp. 308, 309, • Bedford's Scripture Chronology, b. 5. c. 1. and Millar's second edition.—ED.
Church History, c. 1. period 4.