Imágenes de páginas

we in any wife allowed to handle the word of God deceitfully, from an
apprehenfion of the ill ufe which unftable or wicked men may make
of a right interpretation of it, at the hazard of their own falvation.'
Chap. xxi. ver. 29.—and do ye not know their tokens? Don
Rather, I think-THEIR MONUMENTS. Coc-
ceius makes the word to fignify here a fepulchre. Thefe it is well
known were placed by the way fide. Thus Lycidas the fhepherd
fays to his fellow traveller Mæris:
Hinc adeo media eft nobis via;
Incipit apparere Bianoris.-

namque fepulchrum
-Virg. Ecl. ix. 59.

Chap. xxiv. ver. 6. They reap every one his corn in the field. −17187; 15:32 7] The LXX. Chaldee, and Vulgate, feem

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-,for they thus render the place בליהם or בליו to have read

They reap in a field which is not their own. The true lection, however, feems to be 171p", and this the fenfe-AND THEY REAP THE FIELDS IN THE NIGHT, viz. of the opin prefed, mentioned in the next hemiftic. This interpretation will be found perfectly confiftent with the whole context; whereas the fenfe of our version seems at variance with it.' This is one of those paffages which the Author thinks he has restored to their primitive genuineness. Upon the latter part of this verfe he remarks as follows, and they gather the vintage of the wicked. y

Rather-of THE TROUBLED, or OPPRESSED. So ww is ufed, chap. xxxiv. 29. Thus alfo the Vulgate-vineam ejus, quem vi opprefferint, vindemiant.--`


Chap. xxxvii. ver. 13. He caufeth it to come, whether for corresion, or for his land, or for mercy. 1378 ON BON

It is not improbable that is [ אם לחסד ימצאהו:

repeated before


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5 by the mistake of an ignorant tranfcriber,

who finding the prefixed might think it neceffary to add too, as in the other inftances. Without it the fenfe would be complete and proper-HE CAUSETH IT TO COME UPON HIS LAND, WHETHER FOR CORRECTION, OR FOR MERCY.

Chap. xxxix. ver. 19. Haft, thou clothed his neck with thun

Rather-HAST THOU [התלביש צוארו רעמה: ?der

CLOTHED HIS NECK WITH PRIDE? For has that fenfe in Chaldee, which feems more fuitable than that of thunder.


Chap. xli. ver. 25. When be raiseth himself, the mighty are afraid: by reafon of breakings, they purify themselves. 11'

-our verfion is not very intel [אלים-משברים יתחטאו:

ligible in the latter hemiftic: the old one is; but the words cannot admit of that construction, viz. and for fear they faint in themjelves. The verfe ought to be thus rendered-BY REASON OF HIS GREATNESS (his enormous bulk) THE MIGHTY ARE AFRAID: THEY WHO BRUISE HIM (endeavour fo to do) MISS THEIR AIM, n is here conftrued as chap. xxxi. 23. and on as Judg. xx. 10. and chap. v. 24. This is very oppofite to the context.

'Pfalm xix. ver. 3. There is no speech or language, where their voice

[אין אמר ואין דברים בלי נשמע קולם: .is not beard

Rather-Though they have NO SPEECH NOR LANGUAGE,


YET THEIR VOICE IS HEARD. So Noldius, who gives this
fenfe to the verse, and it is truly a fublime one: for whether we con-
fider the heavens as the feat of the meteors, whofe awful found is
often heard; or confine the idea to their admirable structure, which
will draw forth praife and admiration from him that contemplates on
them; the thought is truly poetical.-

Pfalm xxxvi. ver. 5. Thy mercy, O Lord, is in the heavens; and


יהוה בהשמים חסדך .thy faithfulnes reacheth unto the clouds

: 8-] Rather-THY MERCY, O LORD,
THE CLOUDS. If the in' is not an error for,
fee a fimilar construction of the fame letter, Ifa. xlviii. 10. Pf. xlii.
10. See alfoy thus ufed, Nah. i. 10. 1 Chron. iv. 27. The
next verfe confirms this fenfe.'

Query. Whether the fentiment conveyed in our English verfion is
not more grand and fatisfactory than that which is imparted by this
Author's emendation?

Pf. xlix. ver. 8.—and it ceafeth for ever.

1) These words are, I think, improperly connected with thofe that immediately precede, viz. For the redemption of their foul (or of his foul, according to the old verfions) is precious. Thofe ought, I think, to make part of the foregoing verfe, and the next verfe begin with thefe, thus, BUT HE WILL CEASE FOR EVER, THOUGH HE WOULD LIVE TO ETERNITY AND NOT SEE CORRUPTION. The verb fignifies to be in a fiate of utter ceffation; to be lifelefs, or dead. Ifaiah xxxviii. 11. Pf. xxxix. 4.

Ver. 11. Their inward thought is that their houses shall continue

,All the ancient veriions [קרבם בתימו לעולם-.for ever

without exception, read here, inftead of p; which
yields a much better fenfe (and ought doubtlefs to be admitted) viz.

Pf. li. ver. 5. Behold I was frapen in iniquity, &c.] So Tully-
fimul atque editi in lucem et fufcepti fumus, in omni continuo pravitate
verfamur,- -ut pæne cum lacte nutricis errorem fuxiffe videamur. Tufc.
Difp. lib. iii. cap. i.

Pf. lxxxiv. ver 3. Yea, the Sparrow hath found an houfe, and the
Swallow a neft for herself, where he may lay her young, even thine al-

גם צפור מצאה בית ודרור קן לה אשר שתה .ters, &c [אפרחיה את מזבחותיך

As feems rather redundant here, might not we read or, and render-AS THE SPARROW FINDETH AN HOUSE, AND THE SWALLOW A NEST, WHERE SHE MAY LAY HER YOUNG, so LET ME APPROACH (or, LET ME BE PLACED AT) THINE ALTARS, &c. is ufed as a particle of comparifon, Jer. li. 49.

Ver. 5.-in whofe heart are the ways of them.


Rather, I think-IN WHOSE HEART are PRAISES :
for the verb fignifies to extol, or praife. Pf. Ixviii. 4.
Ver. 6. Who paffing through the valley of Baca, make it a well:

עברי בעמק הבכא מעין ישיתוהו .the rain alfo fillet the fools Thus, I think, the ne [גם ברכות יעטה מורה:



,מור is here confidered as a noun, from מורה .CHANGE

which fignifies to make a change in the circumftances, or to alter to the reverfe. See Hof. iv. 7. Mic. ii. 4, and I read, with the ancient

הבכה verfions

• Pf. lxxxvii. ver. 4. I will make mention of Rahab and Babylon to them that know me; bebold, Philiftia, and Tyre,, with Ethiopia, this

אזכיר רהב ובבל לידעי-חנדה פלשת .man quas born there נוצור עם כוש-זה ילד שם:

Rather-I WILL SPEAK, TO THOSE THAT KNOW ME, OF EGYPT, AND BABYLON; BEHOLD, OF PHILISTIA, AND TYRE, WITH ETHIOPIA, faying, SUCH A ONE WAS BORN THERE. The fame with dis ufed contemptuously, viz. as for THIS MOSES, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him. Exod. xxxii. 1. The meaning of this verfe I conceive to be no other than this, viz. "that in fpeaking to my ac quaintance concerning Egypt, Babylon, and all the other neigh bouring countries, I fhall make mention of the greateft perfons born in them as mere ordinary characters, from whofe births their refpective countries will derive no great credit, in comparifon of that infinitely more eminent native of Judea, who is the fubject of the fol lowing verfe."

Ver. 5. And of Zion it shall be faid, This and that man was born in ber: and the Highest himself fhall establish her. N 135

ולציון יאמר Rather-BUT [איש ואיש ילד בה וחוא יכוננה עליון:

OF ZION IT SHALL BE SAID, THE MOST EMINENT OF MEN WAS BORN IN HER; AND HE, THE MOST HIGH, SHALL ESTABLISH HER. W put in oppofition to (as before explained) fignifies a man of confequence: and, according to the Oriental phrafeology, by their reduplication, muft mean the fuperlative or highest degree: or the man, even the man, fignifies the man of men, THE GREATEST OF ALL MEN. According to this interpretation every one will fee who this eminent perfonage was to be, from whofe birth Zion (ufed by a Synecdoche for Judea) was to acquire fo much glory. The latter hemiftic feems to me to have reference, not to God the Father, but to his Son: it appearing to be exegetical of the preceding one, and to describe his divine, as the other does, his human nature.

Pf. xcix. ver. 4. The king's frength alfe loveth judgment. DAN DE Rather, I think--For thou, O MIGHTY KING, who LOVEST: JUSTICE, DOST, &c. I confider as the participle prefent; in order to avoid the enallage in the next hemiflic. Our tranflators feem to have understood the king's firength in the fame fenfe as Homer ufes Bin Hexλnin.

Pf. cxli. ver. 6. When their judges are overthrown in fony places, they shall hear my words, for they are fweet. - We have here the words 2707, which fignify literally in the hands of the rock: but as D', when applied to the fea, Pf. civ. 25, is ufed for its gulphs



and windings, fo here it may denote the receffes, boles, or fides of the rock, where Saul and his officers were let go free by David; for this I would therefore evidently is the true fenfe of D in this place. render the verfe thus, THEIK KÜLERS WERE LET GO IN THE SIDES OF THE ROCK, AND HEARD MY WORDS, which WERE KIND.'

In the criticisms upon the rcgth Pfalm this Author takes notice of Dr. Sykes's remark, that the imprecations here delivered are spoken against David by his adverfaries. Dr. Durell wifhes to acquiefce in this conclufion, but confiders it as fraught with infuperable difficulties. The 20th verfe he apprehendsdestroys the hypothefis, befide which, the objection, he thinks, ftill remains as to many other parts, of the Old Teftament. Neither is he fatisfied with the fuppofition that these imprecations are, in every inftance prophetic denunciations of God's judgments upon impenitent finners. The most probable account of the matter, in my humble opinion, fays he, is this, that God Almighty-did not interpofe by his grace, or act upon the minds of his peculiar people, no not even of their prophets, in an extraordinary manner, except when he vouchfafed to fuggeft fome future event, or any other circumftance that might be for the public benefit of mankind. In all other refpects (I apprehend) they were left to the full exercise of their free will, without controul of the divine impulfe. Now God had abundantly provided in that code of moral and ceremonial institutes which he had given the people for their law, that the poor, the fatherless, the widow, and firanger, fhould be particularly regarded; whence they ought to have learnt to be merciful as their Father in heaven is merciful: and it must be confeffed that we fometimes find fuch behaviour and fentiments in the Jews, with respect to their enemies, as may be deemed truly chriftian; fee Pf. xxxv. 13, 14, &c. But, in that very fyftem of laws, it was alfo, for wife reasons, ordained that they should have no intercourfe with the feven nations of the Canaanites, but fhould abfolutely exterminate them; whence they unwarrantably drew this inference, that they ought to love their neighbours; but hate their enemies, as our Lord declares, Matt. v. 43. From these devoted nations they extended the precept to the rest of mankind, that were not within the pale of their church; nay fometimes to their own domestic enemies, thofe of their own blood and communion with whom they were at variance.-How far it may be proper to continue the reading of these pfalms in the daily fervice of our church, I leave to the confideration of the legiflature to determine. A Chriftian of erudition may confider thofe imprecations only as the natural fentiments of Jews, which the benign religion he profeffes abhors and condemns: but what are the illiterate to do, who know not where to draw


the line between the law and the gofpel? They hear both read, one after the other, and I fear too often think them both of equal obligation; and even take shelter under fcripture to cover their curfes. Though I am confcious I here tread upon flippery ground, I will take leave to hint, that, notwithstanding the high antiquity that fanctifies, as it were, this practice, it would, in the opinion of a number of wife and good men, be more for the credit of the Chriftian church to omit a few of thofe pfalms, and to substitute some parts of the gospel in their ftead."

Let us now add two or three farther criticisms from the book of Proverbs.

Chap. v. ver. 6. Left thou ponder the path of life, her ways are moveable, that thou can'st not know them.-The firft hemiftic does not well connect with the latter, or the context, in our verfion; and that, because our tranflators affign a wrong person to the verb; for Don is equally the 2d per. mafc. or the 3d fem. of the future, as every Tyro knows. This overfight is the more remarkable, as they had doubtless the old verfion before them, which renders the word properly thus-SHE WEIGHETH NOT THE WAY OF LIFE: HER PATHS ARE MOVEABLE; THOU CAN'ST NOT KNOW THEM.

• Chap. xvi. ver. 1. The preparations of the heart in man, and the anfwer of the tongue is from the Lord. The oppofition between God and man, and the other members of these two hemiftics feems to fhew, that they ought (as most of these proverbs are, particularly ver. 9.) to be conftrued feparately, thus-To MAN belong THE INCLINATIONS OF THE HEART: BUT BY THE LORD IS THE TONGUE ASSISTED. That is (as I apprehend)" Man contrives, but the fuccefs of his defigns depends upon God:" the fame fentiment as at ver. 9, but differently expreffed. For the affift ing of the tongue, in order to execute any purpose, feems clearly to imply this idea. I conftrue as the participle Pabul, and give it the fenfe it has, Pf. xxii. 21. lxv. 5, &c.

Ver. 11. A juft weight and balance are the Lord's-RatherTHE WEIGHT AND THE BALANCE are THE ORDINANCE OF THE LORD; i. e. of his appointment. So is rendered, Exod. xv. 25. Lev. xxiv. 22. 2 Chron. xxxv. 13. Neh. viii. 18, &c. There feems to be no occafion to add any epithet; for if they be not true according to the ftandard, they are not then weights or balances; and ftill lefs can they be called the Lord's appointment. They are therefore here used xar' ox, as when Solomon fays, that whofo findeth a wife, findeth a good thing, chap. xviii. 22.


Ver. 33. The lot is caft into the lap :-What our tranflators understood by lap in this place, I do not know: but am clear, that P ought to be rendered, INTO THE MIDST (as 1 Kings xxii. 35.) viz. of the urn or vessel, into which the different billets were caft. In lomer we find they were put in an helmet, Iliad, H. V. 175, and 181.


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