Page images

of men (including events till then unparalleled in the world's history), and terminated with the full establishment of the Israelite kingdom, and the erection of the Temple where the God of Israel dwelt among them after the manner of an earthly sovereign. The next step spans the entire period of the kingdom-embracing 467 years, or fourteen generations — and Jehovah's foot is seen to rest on the rivers of Bablyon,' where captive Judah, the last of the tribes of expatriated Israel, sits on the ground weeping, with her harp hung up on the willows, remembering Zion, and refusing to be comforted (Ps. cxxxvii. 2).

[ocr errors]

One step more, and the Eternal plants his foot on the most interesting point of the earth's surface, and at the moment when the most memorable event in the world's annals is being enacted-even when the Eternal Son, now incarnate, lies a little babe in the manger at BETHLEHEM, and when an angel is heard proclaiming, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day, in the city of David, a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.' The event is not merely of infinite importance to Israel and to 'all people,' but it necessitates a grand jubilee in the realms of glory; for 'suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men.' This, truly, is the divine fruit of that wondrous tree which, ages before, Jehovah had planted, but which has not yet produced its destined fruit.

Here the Almighty pauses, as if to contemplate the glory yet to be revealed that eternal revenue of glory which He will infallibly derive from this unparalleled event. Assuredly, however, though He pauses, He does not mean to halt. His face is still steadfastly directed towards the future, and we are led confidently to expect that He will take as many steps more as He has already taken. Indeed we cannot but anticipate that His future steps shall, like all His past, be both measured and majestic; and that they shall, in the same way, correspond with the critical junctures in Israel's future. The two millenniums He has already traversed consisted, as we have seen, of three great periods, commencing respectively with Abraham, David, and the Captivity; and doubtless three other periods, not less eventful, have yet to be traversed ere all God's purposes regarding his covenant people shall have been consummated. The Cross of Christ stands in the centre of all the ages. The three former periods terminated there; and there must the three periods that follow begin. Not only does St. Matthew suggest this in his famous mnemonic sentence (for mnemonic it is, in the highest sense of the term), but near the end of his Gospel (Matt. xxiv. 3.41) he shows how the Lord Himself, as He sat on the Mount of Olives, and immedi

ately before His last sufferings, filled up St. Matthew's outline with details of the most momentous character. St. Luke in the first chapter of the Acts, St. Paul in his two epistles to the Thessalonians, and especially St. John in that wonderful 'Revelation which so appropriately closes the canon of Scripture (particularly chap. xx.), furnish us with many further particulars. In short, all the writers of the New Testament agree in assigning to the portion of Israel's history then future THREE GRAND PERIODS, which, on account of their main characteristics, we may denominate the Period of the Dispersion, the Period of the Kingdom, and the Period of Consummation, after which time shall cease and the eternal ages begin."

Both sides of this question are attended with great difficulties, and the editor would not be understood as giving judgment either way. The most important epoch from which years are reckoned, is the Christian Era, or the era of the Incarnation, which is universally employed in Christian countries, and is even used by some eastern nations. The commencement of this era is the 1st of January, in the fourth year of the 194th Olympiad, the 754th from the foundation of Rome. So did the Abbot Dionysius Exiguus fix it in the 6th century. There is reason to think, from the most careful consideration of historical data, that this is four years too late. And, also, that the season of the year when Christ was born has been wrongly fixed.

TIMOTHY, in the Greek Timotheus (God's honour), the son of a Greek and a converted Jewess of good repute, by name Eunice (Acts xvi. 1. 2 Tim. i. 5), by whom he had from childhood been instructed in the Holy Scriptures (2 Tim. iii. 15), and in consequence was prepared to receive the gospel from the lips of Paul. Born in Lycaonia, and probably at Derbe (or Lystra, Acts xvi. 1; xx. 4), Timothy may have become a Christian on occasion of Paul's first visit to that place (Acts xiv. 20, 21), but certainly owed to the apostle his conversion (1 Tim. i. 2. 1 Cor. iv. 17); and when the latter visited Derbe a second time, he, in order not to offend the prejudices of the Jews, who held that the only way into the Christian church lay through the temple, caused Timothy to be circumcised before he associated him with himself as a fellow-labourer in the gospel (Acts xvi. 3). Having thus, by circumcision and laying on of hands (1 Tim. iv. 14; vi. 12. 2 Tim. i. 6), been appointed to the work, Timothy went forth with Paul to proclaim the glad tidings, passing (52 A.D.) through Troas into Macedonia. When Paul went thence to Athens, Timothy remained at Berea (Acts xvii. 10, 14), whence he was commanded by the apostle to come to him at Athens (15). Either before he could obey this order, or after he had reached that city, Timothy was sent to Thessalonica

by Paul, who was in solicitude regarding the church in that place (1 Thess. iii. 2). From Thessalonica Timothy (52 or 53) went to Corinth, bearing to Paul information in respect to the Thessalonians (6. Acts xviii. 5), and was present when Paul wrote both letters to these Christians (1 Thess. i. 1. 2 Thess. i. 1). In Corinth or in the vicinity, Timothy seems to have remained some time (2 Cor. i. 19). Thence he went to Ephesus, and was sent (56 or 57) by Paul into Macedonia (Acts xix. 22) and Corinth (1 Cor. iv. 17). But when Paul wrote his First letter to the church in the latter place, he did not know whether Timothy had arrived there (xvi. 10). He is, however, with Paul in Macedonia when the former wrote his Second letter to the Corinthians (2 Cor. i. 1); but when, at a later period, (58) he at Corinth wrote his Epistle to the Romans, he had Timothy by his side (Rom. xvi. 21). On Paul's return through Macedonia, he was accompanied, among others, by Timothy, who, going before, tarried for him at Troas (Acts xx. 1-5); but whether or not he went with the apostle to Jerusalem, or was left at Ephesus, is not certain (comp. 2 Tim. iv. 13). Not till a later period, when the apostle is in chains at Rome, do we find Timothy again with him (Phil. i. 1. Col. i. 1; Philem. 1), at a date which has been approximately fixed at A. D. 63. As, how ever, he received instructions to come shortly' to Paul (2 Tim. iv. 9, 11, 21), when, now a prisoner in Rome (i. 12; vi. 7), the apostle seems to have left his son somewhere in Asia, it may be at Ephesus, when on his way to Jerusalem. The history, which is defective, has been supplemented by tradition. Accordingly, Timothy appears as the first bishop of Ephesus, and is stated to have suffered martyrdom under Domitian (81–96 A. D.). It is doubted whether the Timothy mentioned in Hebrews (xii. 2) is the same with the subject of this article, nor is it known what was the custody from which Timothy is then said to have been set free.

The history of Timothy, the arrangement and details of which are, from want of materials, not without difficulty, gives us only few characteristic traits. But that he possessed superior natural abilities, and, under Paul's direction, was fitted to organize and govern bodies of men, is obvious from the duties devolved on him by his spiritual father. Timothy appears to be one of these secondrate characters, of moderate talents and good dispositions, who, receiving from the pious cares of domestic vigilance and love a sound religious training, are well prepared to be effectual instruments in the hands of a master for executing great and beneficial desigus.

Timothy, the First Epistle to, professes to have been written by Paul to Timothy after

he had requested the latter to remain at Ephesus, when he himself departed into Macedonia (1 Tim. 1-3). This request Luke has not recorded. It could not have been made on Paul's first visit to Ephesus, for then he did not repair to Macedonia (Acts xviii. 19-23). We are therefore referred to Paul's second visit to Ephesus (xix. 1−xx.), whence the apostle proceeded to Macedonia, where he may have written this letter. But in the Acts we find Timothy sent before Paul into Macedonia (xix. 22); so that we have no alternative but to suppose that he thence returned to the apostle while still at Ephesus, where, at his request, be remained while Paul went to Macedonia. The object for which Timothy was left at Ephesus was, that he might correct errors of doctrine (i. 3), select and appoint bishops (ii. 1, seq.) and deacons (8), in the absence of Paul himself, who contemplated a speedy visit to the church (14, 15); also give instructions in sound doctrine (iv. 11, 13, seq.), and generally exercise an oversight over the community (v. vi.). But when Paul, in proceeding to Jerusalem some time after, came to Miletus, the church at Ephesus had its recognised officers (Acts xx. 17-28). In the interval, then, must the Epistle have been written. It must also have been written before the Second Epistle to the Corinthians, for Timothy was with Paul when he composed that Epistle (2 Cor. i. 1) This, it is true, leaves Timothy but a short time for fulfilling his important duties at Ephesus. But his friend and master needed his presence; and how much better was the inflaence which lasted for at least many weeks, than that which could be exerted by a mere letter in the church at Ephesus! Paul, intending to remain in that city until Pentecost A. D. 59 (1 Cor. xvi. 8), was compelled to leave earlier (Acts xix. 23, seq.), and proceeded through Macedonia into Greece (xx. 1, 2), and thence back into Macedonia. At Easter he left Philippi for Asia. Hence this journey lasted from Whitsuntide till Easter, that is, a year all but fifty days. Of this period Paul passed in Greece three winter months, probably November, Decem ber, January (xx. 3). Hence from his quit ting Ephesus till his coming into Greecethat is, from Whitsuntide to Novemberthere were about five months. He left Philippi at Easter of the next year, and desired to be at Jerusalem by Whitsuntide. Between these two festivals falls his interview with the elders of the Ephesian church. From the time, then, when Paul left Ephesus till he saw its officers at Miletus, there clapsed about twelve months. A short time before the commencement of this period, Timothy


sent from Ephesus to Macedonia. Thence he returned to Ephesus, where he was left by Paul. While there, he received Paul's first letter to him. Having acted on

this, he went to Paul, and was with the apostle when he wrote his Second Epistle to the Corinthians. And with Paul may he have been at the interview with the Ephesian elders, and, as a representative of the apostle, remained with the church over which they presided.

The details into which we have gone, show that there was time sufficient for the movements assigned to Timothy. Of his visit to Macedonia and return to Ephesus, before the departure of Paul, we cannot speak positively, because the indications of time in the Acts are here very vague (Acts xix. 20-22); but between the time of Paul's quitting Ephesus and the ensuing November, there were three months in which Timothy might set in order the church in that place, and two for his journey to his father in the faith. If, indeed, we allow time for Timothy to receive the letter after Paul's departure, we shall then not have many weeks in which Timothy could execute his master's instructions. As, however, the evils which Paul wished to cure were of a pressing nature, and were known to him when he left Ephesus, we may reasonably think that he took the first moment of leisure in order to impress on the mind of Timothy the great purposes for which he had been left behind Nor is it unlikely, considering the disturbed state of the city when Paul left it, that Timothy may have found it difficult to maintain himself there at that time for longer than some three months. It may be an indication that Ephesus was even a year afterwards not free from agitation and peril, at least to Paul, that the apostle, when on his road to Jerusalem, instead of repairing thither, met the elders of the church at Miletus. It confirms the opinion that the letter was written shortly after Paul's departure, that Hug fixes Whitsuntide (A. D. 59) as the time of its composition.

The whole of these views, however, have but an insufficient historical basis. What is certain in the literary history of the New Testament is not augmented and confirmed, but invalidated and rendered suspicious, by mixing and confounding with it probable combinations and plausible conjectures. If Providence has curtailed our knowledge, we should bow in modest acquiescence, and not irreverently attempt to fill up the chasms by inflated bubbles or harsh dogmatism.

Improper steps of this kind have produced a natural reaction, and led some to deny the authenticity of both Paul's letters to Timothy. In this step they have found their chief support in the defects of our historical documents.

If, however, we carefully look into the substance of the letter now before us, we shall find sufficient reason to hold fast to its Pauline origin. The great aim of the Epistle, namely, to assist Timothy in giving a

proper organisation to the church, was one which was likely to be entertained by Paul; who, though he expected the speedy appearance of Jesus, yet did he earnestly desire to collect a people prepared for the Lord, and for that purpose knew that some means of personal influence and instruction were indispensable. The necessity was the greater in Ephesus, because of the disturbances which had necessitated his own departure and threatened the very existence of the church, which was likely to stand firm against pressure and violence from without only if made into an organised, compact, and well-working corporation. The danger was the greater, and the need of Paul's advice and the presence of Timothy the greater too, because falsities and collisions assailed and troubled the community.

If, moreover, the character of those errors and rivalries is studied, they will be found to be essentially the same with those which from other sources are known to have prevailed in Asia Minor, especially at Ephesus. See EPHESUS, EPHESIANS, PHILOSOPHY.

The doctrinal teachings of the Epistle are also Pauline. It has, indeed, been said (Credner, Das Neue Testament, ii. 110) that the statement in 1 Tim. ii. 4, that God desires the salvation of all, is contrary to Paul's general view; though the same doctrine is expressly, and even more strongly, set forth in Rom. ii. 6, seq.; v. 12, seq.; x. 12; xi. 32. 1 Cor. xv. 21, seq. It would be easy to exhibit other correspondences in doctrine between this letter and acknowledged writings of Paul, whose earnest, lofty, glowing, yet considerate spirit, appears in it in features too numerous and too marked to be mistaken.

The place from which this First Epistle to Timothy was written cannot be determined, but it confirms the view we have given to find that it presents at its close no greetings. If written on his journey, or in a moment snatched from active labour in the less known parts of Europe, its author would have no time for any thing save those instructions which were all-important, and the necessity for which pressed heavily on the writer's mind; nor would Paul find in persons around him points of connection between his then condition and the one that he had left at Ephesus. Where he was, there were probably few or none who had personal friends in the Ephesian church to whom Paul might transmit greetings; and he himself was probably too uncertain of the faithfulness of its members to know what tone, in the actual circumstances, he should take towards persons whom he might otherwise have saluted as beloved brethren. Besides, inasmuch as the Epistle was addressed by an individual to an individual, there was no need for any recognition of others, especially as the communication was essentially of a private nature, containing, as it did, express

Instructions to Timothy for his own personal guidance.

If this Epistle was not written by Paul, it must have had for its author one equal to Paul in genins, and similar to him in complexion of thought and elevation of purpose. But two Pauls are as inconceivable as two suns. A Paul that could descend to deception, would by the act prove himself to be no Paul.

The Second Epistle to Timothy, which also bears the name of Paul as its author (i. 1), was written at a time when the latter was a prisoner (8, 12, 16; ii. 9), expecting the second appearance of the Messiah (10, 12; Iv. 8), also his own immediate departure (1v. 6, seq.), and under trying and painful eircumstances (ii. 11, 12), in order to strengthen Timothy in the gospel and in his official duties as overseer of the church (i. 6, 8; ii. 1, seg., 24; iv. 1, sey.; and particularly to guide and aid him in correcting false doctrine and misconduct (ii. 14, seq.; iii. 1, seq.); as well as to lead him to practise the virtues of the gospel (ii. 22, seq.), encouraged by Paul's example, which was well known to him (iii. 10, seq.). From i. 17, it is probable that Rome was the place whence the letter was sent. This conclusion 13 greatly confirmed by other facts just detailed. It thus appears that the Epistle was sent to Timothy by Paul when a prisoner at Rome, suffering greatly for the cause of Christ. This endurance arose not merely from his being a prisoner. He had, it seems, had a hearing of his cause. On this occasion he was forsaken by all, being thus made like his Lord when in his hour of anguish and ignominy, all forsook him and fled.' And while Christians of Asia Minor were alienated from the apostle, Demas, seduced by his love of the present world, had also abandoned him. Others had departed Crescens to Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia, and Tychicus had been sent to Ephesus. Luke only was with him. Hence he is led to beg Timothy to use his best efforts in order to come to him shortly.

The place where Timothy was when Paul wrote to him this second communication, may be probably ascertained by circumstauces therein found. Thus in i. 15, Paul uses words which seem to imply that his son was in Asia and intimately acquainted with the Christian churches in that land, especially with the church at Ephesus (18). The official duties enjoined on Timothy in this Epistle are similar to those he is required in the former to exercise at Ephesus, and the state of mind in regard to errors to be guarded against and corrected is also similar. In the mention of names in iv. 10, seq., the laws of association suggest an argument tending to show that Timothy was at Ephesus; for no sooner does Paul mention that city, than he immediately adverts to

Timothy (12, 13). A similar confirmation is found in i. 4, where, speaking of his great desire to see Timothy, Paul adds, "being mindful of thy tears. The ides of seeing him brings up the associated idea of the last time he saw his disciple. When was that? According to the view we have given, when he took leave of Timothy at the tearful interview with the Ephesian elders. The names mentioned in the last chapter of the Epistle confirm the view Demas was connected with Asia Minor, being known to the church at Colosse (Col. iv. 14); also Luke, called in the same place the beloved physician,' as well as Crescens (2 Timothy iv. 10). Mark, moreover, was connected with Asia (Acts xii. 25; xiii. 5, 13. Philem. 24, especially Col. iv. 10). Tychicus belonged to Troas (Acts xx. 4); and as he bore the letter to the Colossians (iv. 7), so may be have borne this letter to Timothy, for he was sent by Paul to Ephesus (2 Tim. iv. 12), with which church he was well acquainted (Ephes. vi. 2), and Carpus was an inhabitant of Troas (2 Tim. iv. 13), while Alexander belonged to Ephesus (Acts xix. 33). Aquila was of Pontus (Acts xviii. 2 Prisca, in 2 Tim. iv. 19, is another form of Priscilla, Aquila's wife). Onesiphorus ideclared by Winer to be a Christian of Ephesus (2 Tim. i. 16; iv. 19). Trophi mus was an Ephesian (Acts xx. 4; xxi. 29) Eubulus is mentioned only in this chapter, but the Greek form of the name renders it likely that he was connected with Asia. Of Pudens, Linus, and Claudia, nothing can be said, as these names occur in no other place. Erastus is found with Paul and Timothy in Ephesus, and both are sent by him into Macedonia (Acts xix. 22). Tuus every name of which we know any thing is found to be more or less closely connected with Ephesus. There is one exception, that of Titus, and he, as a fellow-worker with Paul, was doubtless well known to Timothy. The decisive proof that Timothy was in Asia remains to be mentioned. Having requested Timothy to come to him at Rome, the apostle adds, the cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee (2 Tim. iv. 13). Troas lay on the northwestern extremity of Asia Minor, between Paul in Rome and Timothy, if in Ephesus. Natural, therefore, was Paul's request. And in proceeding from Ephesus to Rome, Troas was a place through which Timothy was likely to pass, not only as having been twice passed through by Paul (Acts xvi. 8, 11; xx. 5, seq.), but also as affording the best way to Rome, being at once the shortest and involving least exposure to the sea.

[ocr errors]

The concurrence of these minute, incidental, and independent circumstances, renders it at the least very probable that Timothy was at Ephesus when Paul wrote to him this his Second Epistle. This conclu

[ocr errors]

sion confirms the view given in the previous article, and causes the two letters to give and receive aid in the establishment of their Pauline origin, and the ascertaining of the persou to whom they were sent.

We are also confirmed in the opinion that the letter was written by Paul to Timothy by the fact, learnt in our minute inquiry into these names, that so far as our knowledge extends, every thing accords with that opinion. The persons mentioned are persons with whom Paul and Timothy were acquainted; and most of them were persons whom the history would lead us to expect in the case. And when attention is given to the cursory manner in which these names are let drop from the writer's pen, it is very difficult to conceive that we have here to do with any thing but a reality.

The letter bears traces of an anxious mind. Paul had been before his judges, and there stood alone. Some had proved faithless, others had become prudent. A second hearing had probably been less afflictive. Still, danger and death seemed near. The aged confessor wanted one on whom he could rely. He therefore writes to Timothy, urging him to come, and, if he could, to come before winter (2 Tim. iv. 21). Hence the Epistle wears the appearance of having been composed a short time before Paul's imprisonment at Rome issued in his martyrdom. As such, it is specially interesting; and as such, its tone of affectionate earnest. ness and concern is natural and becoming.

The authenticity of this Epistle has been questioned and denied without sufficient grounds. Though we are disposed to assign a somewhat later date for its composition than Lardner, namely A. D. 61, we concur in these his words: 'It appears to me very probable that this Second Epistle to Timothy was written at Rcme, when Paul was sent thither by Festus. And I cannot but think that this ought to be an allowed and determined point.' It is first mentioned by Irenæus (born at Smyrna in the early part of the second century), who, speaking of Linus, says he is the same as 'Paul mentions in those (well-known) Epistles to Timothy.'

TIN (L. stannum?) was known to the Hebrews (Numb. xxxi. 22. Ezek. xxii. 18, 20) under the name of bedel, a word which some say comes from a root meaning 'to separate;' because, among other mysterious qualities, tin was held to have the power of separating mixed metals. Tin, in Ezek. xxii. 18 (comp. Isaiah i. 25), is mentioned among inferior metals, as if accounted dross,' where also is implied the fact of its entering into amalgams. Such a compound was produced when tin was mixed with copper, forming, not brass, which is copper and zinc, but bronze-a metal employed before iron, and from its being hard and capable of receiving an edge, serviceable in the fabrication

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

of arms. Bronze was also used in the formation of mirrors. Tin (in Greek, kassiteris) was in very remote ages procured from the Cassiterides, or Scilly Isles (and Cornwall), by Phoenician navigators and their dependencies, and sent eastward, through Syria and Palmyra, to distant parts of Asia (Craik's History of British Commerce,' i. chap. i.). Wilkinson, in his instructive, interesting, and trustworthy work, The Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians,' says (iii. 253), The skill of the Egyptians in compounding metals is abundantly proved by the vases, mirrors, arms, and implements of bronze discovered at Thebes and other parts of Egypt; and the numerous methods they adopted for varying the composition of bronze by a judicious mixture of alloys, are shown in many qualities of the metal. They had even the secret of giving to bronze blades a certain degree of elasticity, as may be seen in the dagger of the Berlin Museum. Another remarkable feature in their bronze is the resistance it offers to the effect of the atmosphere; some continuing smooth and bright though buried for ages, and some presenting the appearance of previous oxida tion purposely induced.' See IRON.

TIPHSAH, a city on the western margin of the Euphrates, forming the north-eastern limit of Solomon's kingdom; probably Thapsacus, afterwards called Amphipolis.

TIRAS, a son of Japhet, is held to have been the progenitor of the Thracians (Gen. x. 2). Thrace was a district on the north of Greece, bounded on the east by the Pontus Euxinus (the Black sea); on the south, by the Propontis and the Ægean sea (Archipelago); on the west, by the river Strymon; and on the north, by the mountainous range of Hamus. The river Hebrus ran through the land.

TIRHAKAH, a king of Ethiopia or Cush (See page 440), who made war on Sennacherib when threatening Jerusalem (2 Kings xix. 9. Is. xxxvii. 9). He is the same as Taracos of Manetho, the third king of the 25th dynasty, who, as an Ethiopian monarch, ruled over a part of Egypt. Accord ing to Strabo, Tirhakah penetrated to the pillars of Hercules, or Gibraltar. Hitzig fixes his reign 714-696 A. C. This is one of the points in which the history of Egypt coincides with that of the Hebrews.

TIRZAH (H. pleasant), a royal Canaanitish city conquered by Joshua (Josh. xii. 24), which fell to the share of Ephraim, and became the capital of the kingdom of Israel (1 Kings xiv. 17). Zimri, besieged by Omri, destroyed its palace and himself with fire (xvi. 17, 18). The latter, having reigned in Tirzah six years, transferred the seat of empire to Samaria (23, 24). Tirzah, which lay some twelve miles to the east of Samaria, was celebrated for the loveliness of its natural scenery (Cant vi. 4).

« PreviousContinue »