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to tradition: and, like the traditions of men in general, it“ makes void the law of God," and at the same time disannuls the gospel. The law of God commands “ us to love him with all the

heart," and “ all men as ourselves.” And the gospel calls transgressors to repentance, conversion, faith in the mercy of God, through the promised Redeemer, and obedience to the divine law, as the fruit of this faith. But what do these precepts of Noah require, in order to acceptance and future happiness ? Provided idolatry, blasphemy, (a crime not easily defined with precision,) incest, (another ambiguous term, diversely cxplained,) murder, robbery, and theft, and eating the member of a living creature, be avoided ; a man may be a fornicator, an adulterer, a liar, a perjurer, a drunkard and glutton, a malignant, envious, contentious neighbour, covetous, a tyrant in his family, and in short guilty of almost all kinds of ungodliness, unrighteousness, and licentiousness; besides sins of omission of every

kind without exception : and all this without endangering his salvation! Future happiness, according to this law, is secure, even to such a character, without repentance, conversion, faith in the Saviour, mercy, or any benefit from “ the cove“nants of promise.” On the other hand, if a man have once committed idolatry, blasphemy, incest, murder, robbery, or theft; this law opens no door of faith or repentance; provides no refuge or redress; but leaves him under hopeless condemnation. It is not probable that all, perhaps any, of those who have spoken of this law, or these precepts, as actually given to Noah and his posterity,

meant the whole of this : but as the matter is stated, in this publication especially, these are the undeniable consequences of such a law given to men, by which the obedient, and none else, may obtain eternal life.

The third precept to appoint and constitute ‘just and upright judges, that justice might be ‘ maintained and impartially administered to all,' could be obligatory upon very few, as few are concerned in the appointment of magistrates : and, if no other law, either from revelation or from man's reason and conscience, were in force, what could be the standard or rule of that justice, which was to be impartially administered 2-We may therefore conclude, that these precepts of Noah never were inculcated by God for the purposes here spoken of: though some things afterwards incorporated into the ceremonial law of Moses were previously obligatory, with respect to the atoning sacrifices, and the blood especially, “ which is the life," and that by which the atonement was made. I

We gentiles, however, have the less cause to complain of the Jews, in endeavouring exclasively to appropriate the blessings of the Messiah's kingdom, which they consider as altogether

earthly;? while they allow us almost an equality, in those things which “ accompany salvation with

eternal glory.” And we would desire, in return for this liberality, to communicate to them, if possible, the inestimable blessings of the true Messiah's spiritual and eternal kingdom. “That

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" Gen. ix. 4. Lev. xvii, 10–14.


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“ which we have seen and heard declare we unto you;

that ye may have fellowship with us : and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with “his Son Jesus Christ." I

P. 69. 1. 24. "There is a tradition,' &c. I foresaw that the seventy nations, before spoken of, (p. 49.) would introduce a difficulty about the descendents of Abraham, by Ishmael, by Keturah, and by Esau: but tradition comes in very conveniently to obviate or remove it: and, as the Jews have tradition almost wholly in their own power, it must always be at hand for their accommodation, whenever its help is wanted. As Mohammed, when pressed with any new difficulty, always had a new revelation, and added a new chapter to the Koran ; often in part contradictory to those which had before been published; so, from the immense farrago of traditions in the Talmuds, some one may at any time be produced, by him who will bestow the pains to rummage for it, suited to the emergency, whatever it may be ; but not always consistent with other authorities produced from the same inexhaustible store. Something further, however, still remains to be done about these seventy nations,' before the whole can stand free from insuperable objection. It will be needful to show, how many of the seventy nations were destroyed, whether by deluges, or fire, or earthquake, to make room for all the descendents of Reu, Serug, Nahor, and Terah, except Abraham.

The seventy nations are those mentioned in the tenth of Genesis.

"1 John i. 3.

By these were the nations divided in the earth “ after the flood.” 1 But no descendents of Heber, except Peleg, and his brother Joktan, are mentioned in that chapter: therefore, the descendents of Peleg, except Abraham, are there omitted; and niches must be provided for them, if they be admitted among the seventy.

P. 69. 1. 31. Proof that there were no more ‘ than seventy nations. The text from Deuteronomy, (p. 50. 1. 29.) has already been considered. -(P. 70. I. 17.) It is indeed commanded that seventy bulls should be sacrificed on the several days of the feast of tabernacles ;2 and different methods have been taken of accounting for the singular arrangement of the number, as decreasing each day. But tradition alone informs us, that they were sacrifices for the seventy nations : and then this same tradition about these sacrifices is adduced as a proof, that there were seventy nations and no more! The proof, however, of this tradition itself will presently be considered.

P. 70. 1. 26. “Abraham and his family.—Next,' &c. There is nothing in this passage requiring particular notice; unless it be the 'notion of a drawing (1. 27.) and subdrawing ; (p. 71. 1. 6;) for which, I suppose, even tradition does not readily furnish authority, as it is not mentioned.—In this drawing, “it is recorded, that a 'man by the name of Abraham was to appear in the world,' &c. Now it so happens, that the drawing was not made till long after Abraham's death!


' Gen. x. 32.

? Num. xxix. 12–32. 2 B


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P: 71. 1. 28. ' I say they are mistaken.' This may be compared with what has already been adduced concerning Shiloh, " and the gathering “ of the people to him.”

P. 72. l. l. Everlasting possession. It is impossible that any thing on earth can be everlasting, because the earth itself is not to endure for ever: neither does the original denote this. As, however, the seed of Abraham has not been possessed of the promised land, during more than seventeen hundred years past; the stubborn fact is against this interpretation. And, if it be said, that Israel shall be reinstated in Canaan, and possess it till the end of the world, (which I doubt not will be the case,) this does not in the least disprove our exposition of Jacob's prophecy. The sceptre and the lawgiver departed from Judah, as å nation, when Jesus came, and have been withheld from them ever since; which proves that Jesus is Shiloh, the promised Messiah.-The prophecy of Hosea, in the former part of it, has been turned into history : “ The children of Israel “have abode many days without a king, and “ without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and “ without an image, and without an ephod, and “ without teraphim.” And I trust that, in answer to the prayers, and by the blessing of God on the exertions, of Christians, the latter part also shall soon become history: “ Afterward shall the chil“dren of Israel return, and seek the Lord their “God and David their King; and shall fear the “ Lord and his goodness, in the latter days."

· Hos. iii. 4,5.

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