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body, and partakers of his promise in Christ, by the Gospel.
See, then, the use we may yet make of it, to help us to a fuller understanding of the principal peculiar doctrines of Christianity, by an explication of easy meaning and of highest authority, and to confirm our faith in the belief of those doctrines attested to by the law and the prophets in ancient times, as well as revealed in these last days, by Jesus, God's own Son, the true Messiah.
I shall therefore finish this argument with the words of a great author:
“ That we may form a right judgment • of the Mosaical law, many things are “ to be considered and spoken of in order. “ We are principally to take notice of “ what was mentioned by us before, that " this law is built on the same founda" tions on which the best laws are. “ The law of nature, the innate, eternal
principles of the human mind, and the « duties arising towards God and men, by " the nature of things; these Moses has
shortly and clearly delivered in the Ten « Commands, to which he has subjected “ all his ritual and secondary laws. It is “ moreover to be observed, that Moses “ had it not in his intention to give a law “ most perfect in its own nature, but a “ law most fit and useful for the circum“ stances of time and place; nor did he propose an universal law for the whole “ world, but only for the one people of “ Israel ; nor, finally, was it a law to con“ tinue for ever, but only to the times of “ the Messiah. If you weigh these things “ in your minds, there will be no need of " an apology, or of my defence : let us “ rather praise and admire this great man, “ the wisest lawgiver, and the greatest “ prophet of God; illustrious in all kinds “ of miracles; whom Egypt, the seat of
learning, saw long since, and was " astonished at his triumphs over her
priests and divines; who has since been “ the praise of all nations, whom Christ “ called from heaven a witness of his
glory. These shall be thy praises, thou
prince of Prophets; these the monu“ments of thy glory, as long as the hea“ vens and earth shall endure *.”
* Interea, ut æquum feramus judicium de lege Mosaica, multa sunt expendenda et dicenda suo ordine. Illud imprimis notandum, quod supra diximus, eodem solido niti fundamento hanc legem, quo leges optimæ : nimirum jure naturali, innatis et eternis animi humani principiis et rationibus, debitisque ex natura rerum, erga Deum, et erga homines officiis. Hæc in decalogo breviter et dilucide complexus est Moses. Atque his subjecit reliqua omnia suæ legis ritualia, atque jura secundaria. Præterea notandum, non id in consiliis habuisse Mosem, ut legem conderet sua natura perfectissimam, sed aptissimam, et utilissimam pro ratione loci et temporis. Dein non id sibi proposuit, ut esset lex universalis totius terræ, sed unius populi Israelitici, neque denique lex in perpetuum duratura, sed usque ad tempora Messiæ. Hæc si tecum perpenderis, non erit opus, apologia aut patrocinio nostro. Laudemus potius et admiremur, virum illum maximum, legislatorem consultissimum, summumque Dei prophetam, omne genus miraculis splendescentem ; quem vidit olim, et obstupuit Ægyptus literatorum sedes, triumphantem in suos magos et hierophantas, quem omnes deinceps gentes celebrarunt, quem devique coelo deductum, testem suæ gloriæ adscivit Christus. Hæ tibi erunt laudes, prophetarum princeps, hæc monumenta tuæ gloriæ, donec coeli et terra manserint incolumes.-Burnet de Fide Chris. 34, 35.
In a word, a law so wisely planned, a ritual serving so many excellent uses, does not stand in need of an apology, but only to put a stop to unreasonable prejudice. It deserves esteem and commendation from a discerning, wise, and truly honest mind.
S. Gosnell, Printer, Little Queen Street, London.
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