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the college of London. The compiler has added notes, pointing out, concisely, the methods of distinguishing the goodness of moit articles in the materia medica ; and has subjoined the recipes of feveral noftrums, said to have been analysed by the late Robert Doffie, Efq. A Dissertation upon the Nervous System. 8vo.
Is. 6d. A complicated and incoherent production, abstruse without investigation, and laboured without apparent design.
CONTROVERSIAL. A Reply to a second Letter on the Duration of our Lord's Ministry,
from the Rev. Jofeph Priestley, LL.D. F.R.S. By W. Newcome, D.D. bishop of Waterford, 12mo. 25. Robinson.
In this letter his lordship fuggests some very material considerations in favour of his hypothefis*, and evidently shews, that he has ftudied the subject with great accuracy and discernment. As many of the points in the debate feem to be ambiguous, Dr. Priestley will probably reply ; and if his lordship should follow his example, the controversy may be continued without end. In the mean time, it is in excellent hands, is conducted with libe. rality, politeness, and learning, and cannot but afford fome agreeable information to the lovers of biblical criticism. We shall give our readers the conclusion of this letter:
Many confiderable writers have afligned a duration to our Lord's ministry differing from that which we suppose in our refpective harmonies. Scaliger, Sir Isaac Newton, Whiston, Stillingfleet, Allix, Wells, &c. compute five paffovers between our Lord's baptism and crucifixion. I formerly quoted Whitby as opposing this opinion : but I find that he afterwards acceded to it. For my own part, I do not see that it has
foundation in the gospels. We cannot infer a distinct feast from that recorded John v. 1, because Jesus's difcipies are said to have plucked and eaten ears of corn. And other passovers, suggested by some, are still more weakly founded : Macknight for instance, introduces one foon after the payment of the tribute-money ; because the Talmud says that the tribute was demanded in the last month of the Jewish year.
il will next very briefly state the conveniencies and inconveniencies of comprehending our Lord's ministry within the space of two years and about fix months : of which opinion G. J. Vof. frus says that, if he could recede from that in which Mr. Mann has closely followed him, ad nullam potius dilaberetur quam illam, biennium et paucos menses durasse gonilebar Chrifti : quod a
. See Crit. Rev, vol. l. p,181, vol. lii. p. 115.
veritate proxime recedit, et veterum multorum nititur auctoritate. And again : facile huic fubfcribent fententiæ, quibus durius videtur, quod de usiew aporiew in c. vi. 4. admiffo fuperius diceba
Let it be supposed that John v. 1. was the feast of pentecost immediately after the first passover.
· The advantages of this system are: 1. Jesus attended the feast which directly followed the first paflover; and, because the Jews fought his life at that time, he intermitted his attendance on the four succeeding feasts of tabernacles, the dedication, the paffover, and pentecolt. But, when his ministry drew towards a conclusion, he attended the feasts of tabernacles, of the dedication, and of the passover at which he suffered. There seems to be a remarkable fitness in this conduct : whereas, on the plan of my Harmony, three feasts between John ii. 13. and v. 1. remain unattended for general reasons only.
• 2. Thus too Herod heard of Jesus's fame a year sooner than I have supposed : yet not till Jesus had preached and wrought: miracles in Galilee for near twelve months.
If any should think that, John v. 1. some other feast is meant besides the pentecost subsequent to the first passover, for example the feast of tabernacles in the same year, let him observe how difficult it will be to find a place for it between the season of ripe corn referred to Luke vi. 1. and the raising of the widow of Nain's son, Luke vii. 11.
• The only inconvenience of supposing John v. 1. to be the first pentecost in our Lord's ministry is that there seems to be less time allowed for our Lord's important instructions and actions during the fifty days between John ii. 13. and v. 1. than the decorum and full effect of them require. I have so little attachment to my own plan, that, if I could obtain satisfaction on this point, on which I would gladly know the opinion of able critics, Í would rcadily relinquith it: and I will propose to my readers a diftribution of this time, which may recommend itself to them, though I cannot acquiesce in it myielf. Suppose then that
Days · Jesus was at Jerusalem fome days before the passover, John ii. and after it
3 · That he passed in Judea • In the journey to Samaria and stay at Sichar
3 . In the journey to Cana and stay
5 • In the journey to Nazareth, and stay
5 [These two last articles may be supposed to compre.
hend his preaching in the fynagogues of Galilee.) • In his stay at Capernaum
4 • In his tour about all Galilee
16 In his journey to Jerusalem
My readers will likewife obferve, and calculate as they think fit, whát numbers of miles “our Lord travelled in this space of time.
“ Thus, have / freely given you my sentiments on the subject of our amicable debate : I have endeavoured to deliver them with the respect due to your eminence as a scholar, and with the good manners and good will which we owe to each other as gentlemen and as Christians. I am, &c.'
In the foregoing extract his lordship shews that moderation, which is always amiable, particularly in points of doubtful disputation. Gibbon's Account of Christianity considered : together with some
Striftures on Hume's Dialogues concerning Natural Religion. By Joseph Milner, A.M. 8vo. 35. Robinfon.
This writer divides his work into three parts. In the first, he examines fome facts and characters, which, he thinks, are milrepresented by Mr. Gibbon; in the second he gives an account of what he calls evangelical truth, or the vital parts of Christianity; and, in the third, he defends what he styles Christian principles.
From the general tenor of this work, we are inclined to form a favourable opinion of the author's piety and learning But when we read his account of original fin and imputed righteousness; his invectives against human reason, and his frequent allusions to mysterious feelings and experimental illuminations, we are induced to believe, that his theological abilities would have been more properly employed in writing comments on the works of Jacob Behmen or William Law, than in 'maintaining a controversy with such a formidable adversary as Mr. Gibbon.
MISCELLANEOUS. The Theory of the Syphon, plainly and methodically illustrated. 8vo.
Is. 6d. Richardson and Urquhart. The manner in which a fyphon acts is explained in this pamphlet with great perspicuity, upon the principles of hydrostatics ; and the philosophical author has likewise shewn, by mathematical reasoning, the use of this instrument in accounting for reciprocating springs.
The Neptune. of Europe. 2s. Bell. This pamphlet contains a list of the naval force of Great Britain, and the other inaritime powers of Europe, with the names of the commanders, and a variety of particulars relative to the marine establishments of each nation. The whole is digested in a methodical manner, and may be useful, so far as the fluctuating ftate of temporary appointments will permit.
For the Month of Oxtober, 1781.
Eight Sermons preached before the University of Oxford. By Timothy Neve, D. D. Chaplain of Merton College. Svo.
HIS is the second volume, which we owe to the bene
faction of the pious Mr. John Bampton ; containing a general defence of Christianity, of the orthodox opinion concerning the divinity of our Saviour, &c. The design of the first discourse is to prove,
that Jesus Christ is the predicted Meffiah. Here the author, before he proceeds to the prophecies of the Old Testament, on this subject, makes the following observation : Without the agency of a superintending Providence it would have been an utter impoffibility to imagine, that a regular, well-arranged, and consistent plan, could be carried on for upwards of four thousand years ; and under the administration of different persons of various countries, callings, and interests, who, in their several successive generations, should have the same point perpetually in view ; to which, as to a common center, they thould all uniformly tend, without any, the least, variation or contradiction. Such a continued harmony and union, both of scheme and sentiment must owe its progress, as well as its rise, to that God who is great in counsel, and mighty in work, who giveth wisdom, and knowlege, and understanding.'
This remark is perfectly juft. But if the author had confined himself to that aftonithing feries of prophecies, which gradually unfold almost every circumstance relative to the VOL. LII. Oct. 1781.,
Meffiah, and exactly coincide and centre in the person of Jesus Christ, his argument would have been as strong and conclufive, as it is now, by the addition of the following types and shadows : « The command to Abraham to offer his fon Isaac ; the blessing imparted to Judah ; the sufferings, exaltation, and person of Joseph ; the priesthood of Melchisedeck and Aaron; the call, election, and government of Moses ; the triumphs of Joshua ; the reign of David ; the redemption of the first born; the brazen serpent'; the killing of facrifices, more especially of the pascal lamb, the actions and ceremonies upon the great day of expiation, attending both the scapegoat, and the goat appointed for the sin offering, whose blood was to make atonement: all these various mystical emblems, whether personal, occasional, or perpetual, look to one and the same grand character, which gave them their importance.'
Nothing can be more easy than to find a thousand circumstances, like these, in the history of the Bible. But what authority have we to call all these things prefigurative types' of the Messiah! An inventive genius may probably find a resemblance between the history of Joseph (even perhaps in the affair of Potiphar's wife *) and that of Jesus Chrift; but no prudent writer would attempt to reft the cause of Christianity on any of these arbitrary fuppofitions.
The subject of the second lecture is the true knowlege of God and Christ.'
In the first paragraph the author gives us this observation : « To know or believe in general, that there is a God, some supreme felf-exiftent being, who is the author of nature, who hath given life and being unto us, and to every other creature, must undoubtedly yield us no small pleasure in the discovery, from the exercise and improvement of our intellectual faculties ; but can sugged to us no nearer a relation to him, than that of creator and governor of the universe ?'
Is it poslible to conceive a nearer relation, than that of a creature to his Creator?
In commenting on thefe words, Αυτη εςιν η αιωνιος ζωη ένα γινωσκωσι σε τον μονον αληθινον Θεον, και ον απέσειλας Ιησουν Χριςον. John xvii. 3. Our author says :: By a small alteration in the punctuation, they may be thus rendered : “ This is life eternal to know thee, and Jesus Christ, whom thou haft sent, to be the only true God.” Thus making them bear their tel.
• Her solicitations may possibly be supposed by these ingenions writers to typify this propolal of Satan : * If thou wilt worship me, all Mall be thine.'