Page images
PDF
EPUB

much shocked at these assertions, feeling dered devils. This fact may also be asfully persuaded that much more had been certained from their Apocryphal books; advanced than could be maintained on for not a syllable about any such beings scriptural authority, and expressing a is to be found in the other books of the strong desire to hear certain passages Old Testament. To translate the word explained, if that could be done, con- daljiwy devil, is to mislead and deceive sistently with the assertious which had the mere English reader of the New-Tesbeen made. Agreeably to the wish of tament Scriptures ; since neither the the writer, an early notice was given of Chaldeans, nor any other nation of antithe commencement of the intended dis- quity, had any such being in their relicussion, wheu a large and attentive con- gious systems as that which Christians gregation assembled, and continued to du have been long accustomed to consider so during the whole course.”Advert. the Devil to be; nor had the Greeks or Pp. v. vi.

the Romans any such deity or being in The Lectures are Twenty-four in their mythology: Pluto, indeed, reigned

supreme over all the iuhabitants of their number.

infernal regions, but he was a very harmLect. I. is upon the Serpent in Pa- less and inoffensive being: he had nothing radise, the text Gen. iii." 13. Mr. of the Devil in him.”—Pp. 7–9. Scott here explains the mythology of the Persians and Hindoos, who deified

The Lecturer contends that there is the principle of evil, and shews that not the least authority from the words there was no such principle admitted of Moses to represent the serpent into the Mosaic system, nor conse

that tempted Eve as the Devil, or as

With Dr. quently, any employment for a malig- possessed by the Devil. nant being. He says,

Conyers Middleton and Dr. Geddes,

and, it might be added, Dr. Price, he " — we do not find that the Jews considers the account of “ the fall of ever entertained any ideas concerning a man” an allegory. The following reseparate principle of evil, or a maliguant marks upon its moral design are exspirit, until they returned from their cap.. cellent : tivity in Babylon. In the early part of that captivity, we find them adhering to “ Whether this apologue were intended the belief that Jehovah was the source of to designate the placidity of a pastoral, evil as well as good. This appears from or the activity of an agricultural life, as Ezek iii. 20; . Again, when a righteous the history of Cain and Abel appears to man doth turu from his righteousness be symbolical of the transition from veand commit iniquity, and I lay a stum- getable to animal sacrifices; or, whether bling-block before him, he shall die; its design were to shew that, under the because thou hast not given him warping, Mosaic dispensation, vo evil principle, no he shall die in his sin, and his righteous- malignant being existed, either as the ness which he hath done shall not be opponent of God, or the enemy of man. remembered, but his blood will I require kind, the reason for employing a serpent at thine hand. During their long abode as one of the actors in the fable, is eviiu Chaldea, however, they adopted many dent, to render more conspicuous the opinions which were not to be found in folly and absurdity of serpent-worship, their Scriptures, and acquired many ha- which had become very prevalent among hits which were not inculcated in them, the Heathen nations. The Chaldeans and for neither of which can those Scrip. were very mach addicted to this ridicutures be made answerable. The more lous worship, and to divination in conlearned men among them adopted the nexion with it. Perhaps Lev. xx. 27, may philosophical opinions of the Greeks, be a reference to this kind of idolatry. among whom they lived in Egypt and There were several species of serpenis elsewhere; and then they began to in- held sacred by the Egyptians, among troduce these Heathen notions into the whom the Israelites had lived. Hence Mosaic system, as may easily be ascer. Moses is induced to hold up the serpent tained from those books which are called as an object of degradation, and not of Apocryphal, and which were written after religious worship. Instead of ascribing their return from the Babylonian capti- divinity to it, he represents it as the vity. It was among the Chaldeans that seducer of innocence, and points out, in the Jews appear to have learned 10 attri. strong terms, the inveterate enmity which bute certain diseases to the influence of subsists between this class of reptiles and evil spirits, or the ghosts of wicked men, the human race, as well as all the ani. and who were designated by the term mals of the field. The serpent is evidently Comuwves) dæmons; and which the trans- here introduced with a view to inspire lators of the common version have ren, the Israelites with a horror of such detestable worship, with a contempt and thirty-four times, in which it is employed, hatred for such foolish and abominable fourteen are to be found in the first and idolatry.”—Pp. 17–20.

second chapters of Job. As all these

refer to the same point, they may be conThe IInd Lect. on Job i. 6, is de- sidered as one example: twenty will thea signed to 'shew that no'such being as remain. In five of these twenty, the the Devil, according to the popular term is, in the common version, rendered opinion, can be found in the Old Satan, thereby meaning the Devil. Three Testament. The introduction to the of these five relate to the same persons, dramatic book of Job is here fully (Tatnai, &c.,) aud therefore may be conexamined, and the whole book is pro- sidered as one : the other two are to be nounced an oriental fiction, invented found in 1 Chron. xxi. 1, aud Psalm cis. like our Lord's parables for the sake 6. . Here are, then, your instances in

which this term is, in the common rerof moral instruction.

sion, applied to the Devil. In the fol“ The poem, however, is beautiful and lowing passages, Numbers xxii, 22; 1 sublime ; full of piety and devotion, of Samuel xxix. 4; 2 Samuel xix. 22; 1 resignation and submission to the Al- Kings v. 4, xi. 14, 23, 25; Psalm xxxviii. mighty Ruler of the universe; and it was 20, Ixxi. 13, cix. 4, 20, 29, it is rendered admirably calculated to oppose the ido. by adversaries; and in Numbers xxii. 32, latrous worship of the Sun and the Moon, to withstand ; Ezra jv. 6, accusation ; and which was then prevalent among the in Zech. iii. I, to resist. After this stateChaldeans and Phænicians (ch. xxxi. 26, ment, can any thing more be necessary ?** 27). Hence it appears to me, that we -Pp. 44, 45. are justified in considering the first two chapters as an allegorical lesson, which In Lect. III., Mr. Scott examines is explained and enforced in the poem several detached passages in the Olditself, teaching that as Jehovah created Testament Scriptures, which are supthe world and all its inhabitants, so all posed to inculcate or imply the exthe occurrences of life are under his sole istence of the Devil. The text is ! direction and at his entire disposal, with. Kings xxii. 21, and this upon investiout the intervention of any being what- gation is declared to be an allegorical erer, to occasion or to promote what are termed the evils of life. These arise from Saul, 1 Sam. xvi.' 14, is next con

vision. The evil spirit that troubled the operation of second causes, under the sidered, and is regarded as nothing appointment and controul of the great First Cause of all. So far, therefore, is

more than the violent workings of the this introduction from countenancing the several strong passions of the mind, opinion of an evil, malignant spirit acting anger, hatred, disappointment, jeain opposition to God, that it inculcates à lousy and revenge, which produced doctrine the very reverse ; instructing us, insanity, or at least, temporary menfrom the example of Job, to look to God tal derangement. The explanation of as overruling all things for good to those two passages in the Pentateuch folwho worship him in humility, who serve lows, which we shall quote : him with sincerity, who submit to his appointments with piety, and who acqui- “ In Deut. xxxii. 15, we find Moses esce in all his dispensations with meek- complaining that the Israelites forsook ness and patience; that whether the Lord God and despised the author of their gire, or whether he take from us, we salvation : hence, he says, ' They pro. may be always disposed to bless his roked him to jealousy with strange gods;" name.”—Pp. 40, 41.

i. e. by worshiping them. By their abo

minations they provoked him to anger Having gone through all the pas- (ver. 16). They sacrificed to (O'Twb) sages in the Old Testainent in which

shedim, to demons; agreeably to the the term Satan occurs, the Lectnrer Septuagint, which renders the word by gives in the conclusion the following @zimeriais; indeed, it cannot mean devils, summary of the inquiry :

since neither the Canaanites, nor any From the preceding investigation it other nation, sacrificed to or worshiped appears that there are no traces whatever any such being as the Devil. • They sato be discovered of the Devil in the

crificed unto dæmons,' says Moses, (ver. Særiptures of the Old Testament, under 17,) 'not to God; to gods whom they the term Shatan, which Christian divines

knew not ; to new gods that came newiy have assumed to be used as one of his up, whom your fathers feared not.' These We have seen that it uniformly

were evidently the idols which were signifies enemy, or adversary, or oppo

worshiped by the various wations of the nent, or accuser ; and that out of the

Canaanites. The whole passage speaks

names.

of false gods, not of the Devil : of idols, which the verse stauds connected, even which were without life; and, therefore, with common attention. It is said, that could not be the Devil. The same word all the priests and Levites throughout occurs in Psalm cvi. 37, where our traus. Israel resorted to Rehoboam, king of lators also read devils, but which the Judah, because Jeroboam, king of Israel, Septuagint has again rendered by &aup- and his sons, had rejected them from the y1015, dæmons ; and this is clearly ihe performance of the priestly functious to meaning of the Psalmist ; for, in con- the Lord, and constituted priests of bille nexion with these dæmons, (ver. 38,) he worship, for the goats and the calves that refers to them as the idols of Canaan; he had made. You see, Jeroboam and the vivdictive and destructive dæmons, his sons made these hairy idol deities ; such as Moloch, Baalim, &c., to whom they could vot therefore be the Devil, they sacrificed their sons and daughters. por any of his angels, since these could

« In Lev. xvii. 7, the Israelites are not be manufactured either by the king commanded, now that they had left of Israel or the princes, his sons.”—Pp. Egypt, no more to offer their sacrifices to 59-61. (Drywb) sheirim, unto dæmons ; i. e. says Dr. Taylor, * 'the hairy deities wor- The Lecturer then explains the shiped in Egypt; such as oxen, dogs, terms and phrases Lucifer (Isa. xiv. wolves, monkies, goats. Bochart. It is 12), the great serpent and Leviathan to these that Moses refers, and not, cer- (ib. xxvii. 1), Belial (Deut, xiii. 13, tainly, to any such being as the Devil, &c.), and some others that have been who cannot be a hairy animal, if he be, fancifully interpreted of the chief of as it is said, a spirit. Consequently he the evil spirits; and concludes with who had no kind of acquaintance with stating that the whole evidence, from him, or with his ' serpentine ways ;' nor

the Scriptures of the Old Testament, did he know any thing at all about him.t relating to the Claims of the Devil, It appears, however, that the Israelites has been investigated, and that in the had been accustomed, when in Egypt, to entire volume no such being is to be join in the worship of cats, dogs and goats, discovered, if the Bible is allowed to and other such disgusting idols : hence be its own interpreter. it is that Moses so rigorously forbids them Nr. Scott begins in Lect. IV. his any more to slaughter their sacrifices to examination of the New Testament. these hairy deities, after which he tells This Lecture is confined to the applithem they hankered; and on account of cation of the word Satan in the four this debasing and abominable hankering, the severe punishment of death was to be Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles, inflicted on the offender. The same word and in the text (Matt. xii. 26) and the is used in 2 Chron. xi. 15, and, of course, other places is explained to mean an the same kind of goat-worship must be adversary to the person spoken of, an intended; and this you will find to be enemy to Christ or his cause, as will the case if you read the passage with be seen by the following table : “ Matt, iv. 10,

Mark i. 13, (1.) (Temptation personal adversary.
Luke iv. 8.
Matt. xii. 26,
Mark iii. 23, 26, (2.) Demoniacal or idolatrous worship.
Luke xi. 18.
Matt. xvi. 21. (3.) Peter, a personal adversary.
Mark iv. 15. (4.) Enemies to the gospel.
Luke x. 17. (5.) The same.
Luke xiii. 10. (6.) Applied to the woman afflicted with the rigidity of the

back-bone.
Luke xxii. 31. (7.) Enemies to Jesus and to Peter.

Loke xixi:.3; } Applied by these evangelists, and not by Jesus, to Judas.

Luke xxii. 3.
Acts xxvi. 16. Idolatry; used by Jesus after his ascension.
Acts v. 3.
Applied by Peter to the covetousuess of Ananias."

P. 81, Note. # « Concord. R. 1994, III.

to be. The Egyptians of Mendès were, + “ The prohibition evidently alludes in particular, noted for this sort of idoto the worship of Pan, under the form of latry, which was highly obscene and lasa goat, or other wild hairy animal, such civious. See Buchart, Hieroz. L. xi. C. as the fawns and satyrs were represented liii. p. 1; Geddes' Crit, Rem.

you tha

In this Lecture occur the following him. Coretousness was the Satanas judicious observations on the case of which entered Judas, and taking the full Judas :

possession of his mind, became his bane, “ In Luke xxii. 3, we are informed, Devil obtaining the use of his body, and

his enemy, his adversary, and not the that at the approach of the Passover af carrying him to the Jewish rulers : he which Jesus suffered, Satanas entered had, on several occasions, manifested the into Judas, surnamed Iscariot, who was of the number of the twelve. This is his mind. We must either admit this

great influence of this base passion on meutioned by John xiii. 27, to which the construction of the word, or that Judas following observations will equally apply: was considered by our Lord as the Deril John also reports another expression of himself, or one of his angels : ' Have not our Lord's which will serve to illustrate I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a these two passages. In chap: vi. 70, devil ?' In that case how are we to acJesus, iu addressing his disciples, said,

count for his choosing him as one of his • Have not I chosen you twelve, and one immediate and select disciples, and even of you is a devil ?' diabolos. No one of making him his purse-bearer? Bai i you ever supposed that Judas was that

was this office which brought the princievil, malignant spirit called the Devil : if ple of covetousness into action. When he were uot, what was he? An accuser, he saw that Jesus was completely in the a traitor, an adversary. We have already seen that such is the meaning of Shatan power of the Jewish rulers, he was eri

dently astonished and disappointed. When in the Old Testament, and we shall, in he found that he had irrecoverably beits proper place, have occasion to shew trayed innocence, even his covetcristas

our translators themselves have forsook him ; he went to the comci, so rendered the word Diabolos, in the confessed his guilt, and returned the New Testament. Satanas and Diabolos money. Would the Devil

, whose comity are, therefore, in these passages used as

to Christ is said to be always running, as synonymous terms. What then are we to understand by Satanas entering into done this? The conduct of Judas, as

it were, in a stream against him, hare Judas, if it were not the Devil personating soon as he discovered that he had surhim, or getting possession of him?. If rendered his Master into the power of his we look at the next verse, we shall find enemies beyond deliverance, is a suflicient that Judas, under the influence of his proof of the Devil's having nothing to do covetous disposition, went and communed with it, but that he was solely actuated with the chief priests and captains of the by his avaricious disposition. The shock

Temple, how he might deliver Jesus unto ing catastrophe of his death, whether it them. That this was his own voluntary,

were suffocation by the cord, or anguish base act, appears from ver. 5; And of mind, tends also to shew that it was they were glad, and covenanted to give the love of money which induced him to him money. This was exactly what he think of delivering his Friend and Master wished, and what he seems to have him. into the possession of his inveterate avd self proposed. He then engaged to seek

malignant enemies."-Pp. 77–79. a convenient opportunity to deliver Jesus up to them, apart from the multitude, The Vth Lecture, (from 2 Cor. not doubting but that Jesus, in conse- xii. 7,) contains an inquiry into the quence of the great power which he had so often seen him

display, would easily meaning of the term Satan in the thirbe able to rescue himself from any force teen acknowledged Epistles of Paul, they might bring in order to apprehend the result of which is thus stated :

“ In the thirteen epistles which are generally ascribed to the Apostle Paul, he has used the term Satanas in only five of them; and, in these five letters, ten times. The author of the Epistle to the Hebrews has not made use of it. “ (1.) Rom. xvi. 20, it designates, the persecutors of the Ronian couverts. (2.) I Cor. v. 5,

excommunication for a time. (3.) 1 Cor. vii. 7,

the violation of marriage vows. (4.) 2 Cor. ii. 11,

personal opponent to Paul. (5.) 2 Cor. xi. 14,

false apostles. (6.) 2 Cor. xii. 7,

corporeal infirmity. (7.) I Thess. ii. 18,

Jews, persecuting Paul and Silas. (8.) 2 Thess. ii. 9,

the same persons still persecuting Paul. (9.) 1 Tim, i. 20,

excommunication. (10.) 1 Tini. v. 15,

idolatrous indulgencies."—P. 104, Nole. In the same manner are explained, in the conclusion of the Lecture, the three or four examples of the use of the term Satan in the book of the Revelation.

viii. 44,

[ocr errors]

Lectures V). and VII. are upon the meaning of the word Diabolos or Devil, in the four Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles. The author's view of it may be seen in the following summary:

" This term is used five times by our Lord, as follows:
“ (1.) Matt. xiii. 29, where it refers to humau enemies of the gospel.
(2.) Matt. xxv. 41,

the Roman civil power.
(3.) Luke viii. 12,

human enemies of the gospel, as in Matt.

xiii. 29. (4.) John vi. 70,

Judas Iscariot 1
(5.)

the Jewish Sanhedrim.
By John,
xiii. 2,

to the avarice of Judas.
Peter, Acts x. 38,

to every species of sickness and disease. Paul, xiji. 10,

the opposition of Bar-Jesus to the gospel."

P. 152, Note. On the difficult passage,

Matt. xxv.

such a limitation of this bighly figurative 41, Mr. Scott says,

discourse, and who consider the whole

of it as relating to the general day of “ We have three distinct parties re- retribution : there are others, perhaps, ferred to in this parabolical representa- who, like Bishop Pearce and some other tion: men, under the emblem of sheep; learned men, think it probable that ch. men, under the emblem of goats ; and xxiv, and xsv. to ver. 30, refer to the those who are included under the em. destruction of Jerusalem, and its conseblem of Diabolos and his angels, who quences to Jews and Christians; but that must be meu also, since men are to be the next sixteen verses must be descripassociated with them, as having been tive of the day of judgment, emphatically guilty of similar crimes. If they were not so called. Allow me to ask you, whether intended to be men, the unity of the it be common justice to inflict the same parable is destroyed. The sheep repre- punishment on those human beings, who sent the mildness and innocency of those are here represented under the metaphor who befriended the followers of Christ, of goats, and whose sphere of action was and who practised towards them the du- necessarily limited, as on those who posties of hospitality, kindness and huma- sessed the power and the inclination of benity. The goats are emblematic of those ing so much more extensively wicked, and Jews who were violent and infuriated in who are supposed to have been so from their treatment of those, among their before the foundation of this our world, own nation, who embraced Christianity, since there is no account of so important and who were inhospitable, ubkind and a fact as a rebellion among the inhabiinhurnau to them, particularly when sick, tants of heaven on record, except in the or in distress, or in prison. The sheep fictions of Heathen and Christian poets ? were to be rewarded by an admission !f Diabolos and his angels were such into the Messiah's kingdom. The goats beings as they are generally believed to were to be consigned to the same kind be, who had been engaged in the intelof punishment which had been prepared lectual and moral pursuits of a heavenly for Diabolos, their common Heathen ene- state, and had rebelled and fallen from my; for the Roman civil power was as that state of purity, dignity and glory, inimical to the Jews as to the Christians, in which they were created and had makiug no discrimination between them moved, the punishment prepared for such during the interval referred to. The high and elevated creatures could not be angels or messengers of Diabolos were at all suited to those human beings, here those persons who were active in accu- represented under the term goats, whose sing, betraying and persecuting the Chris- specified crimes were but few, and which tians. All the characters, then, which were confined in their operation. The are employed in the parabolical repre- natures of the goats and of Diabolos and sentation, are necessarily human ; and, his angels have no one point of coincidence. particularly, as the scene of the parable or correspondence. The punishment, is limited to actions performed during therefore, of these heavenly rebels could the period between the resurrection of not be calculated for human beings. The Jesus and the destruction of Jerusalem. duties incumbent on these spirits, who Heuce none of them can have any refer- are represented as having been hurled ence whatever to an all-powerful, malig- from heaven, like Vulcan in the Heathen nant, or superhuman beiug, at the head mythology, were so far superior, and so of an army of spirits as malicious as widely different from those of the goats, himself.

that it is impossible for the punishment “ There are some among you, no attending the respective violation of them doubt, who feel a reluctance to admit to be the same. If they were created VOL. XVIII,

4 P

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »