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woman besought him to cast the evil spirit out of her daughter, she is called "a Greek, a Syrophenician by nation," Mark vii. 26. And these Greeks who were desirous to see Jesus, were, probably, of the same nation, and known to Philip, who is here said to have been of Bethsaida "of Galilee."



The same observation is in Grotius upon this text. And I had occasion some while ago, in considering another text, to say: It was common with all authors about that time, to call the 'people, who inhabited the cities of Asia and Syria, Greeks.'

Our author says, p. 107. They seem to have been proselytes, as they are reckoned among those who came up to Jerusalem to worship at the feasts.'

Which expression is ambiguous. For, as many learned men of our time say, there were two sorts of proselytes, some called proselytes of the gate, others proselytes of righteousness; Dr. W-may mean the former, as do Whitby and Hammond. I know nothing of that sort of halfproselytes. I think there were not any such men in any part of the world in the times of our Saviour and his apostles.

That these men were not proselytes, or men circumcised after the manner of the Jews, appears to me very probable. For all proselytes were entitled to the same religious privileges with native Jews, or the descendants of Abraham and Jacob. Such therefore, as it seems, might have had free access to Christ at the temple. The modesty of these persons may make us think of the Centurion, who, when he entreated our Lord to heal his sick servant, that was dear to him, and our Lord was going toward his house with some elders of the Jews, who also joined in the same request; "he sent friends unto him saying," not only, "that he was not worthy that Jesus should enter under his roof:" but likewise, "that neither thought he himself worthy to come unto him," Luke vii. 1-8. Moreover Philip himself seems to have hesitated about the propriety of the request of these persons. For he also consulted Andrew, before he made the proposal to our Lord. So is the history. "And there were certain Greeks among them, who came up to worship at the feast. The same came to Philip, who was of Bethsaida in Galilee, and desired him, saying: Sir, we would see Jesus. Philip cometh, and telleth Andrew. And again, Andrew and Philip told Jesus."

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Their request to see Jesus, I imagine, implied a desire to have access to his person, and to have some conversation with him. Which request, I think, was granted. Supposing these men to have been uncircumcised Gentiles, it was a favour, and a condescension according to the Jewish maxims. But the woman, who was of the same country, and is also called a Greek, came near to our Lord, and spoke to him several times, and he to her, and at length very comfortably, and healed her daughter. Matt. xv. 21-28. Mark vii. If our Lord yielded so far to the importunity of that woman, why might he not also grant the request of these Greeks, though Gentiles? It is manifest, that she was no better. For our Lord said to her: "Let the children first be filled. It is not meet to take the children's bread, and cast it unto the dogs."

The sequel of the history confirms this supposition. In the hearing of these persons, or soon after they were gone, our Lord made use of these expressions. Ver. 23. "And Jesus answered them, saying: The hour is come, that the Son of man shall be glorified," that is, by the faith of the Gentiles, though many of the Jewish people rejected him. And afterwards, as ver. 32. “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me." The coming of these persons therefore was very acceptable to our Lord. And he thereupon pleaseth himself with the prospect of the speedy and extensive progress of his doctrine. So after the profession made by the forementioned centurion, of faith in our Lord's power to heal his servant at a distance, "He said to them that followed: I have not found so great faith, no not in Israel. And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven," and what there follows. Matt. viii. 10—12.

That the Greeks here spoken of were Gentiles, was the opinion of the ancient writers of the church, as Epiphanius, Chrysostom, Theophylact, Theodore of Mopsuestia, Jerom, and


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Ib. ch. xviii. § 11.

d Haer. 30. num. xxvii.

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* In Joh. hom. 66. al. 65, n. 3. p. 390. tom. VIIL
f In loc.

8 Apud Cotelerii Caten Patr. in Jo. p. 309.
Ad Rufin. T. II. p. 217. al. ep 131.

others who never were perplexed with the notion of two sorts of proselytes, which has gained so much credit among learned Christians of late times.


And we are likewise assured by Josephus, that Gentiles, or such as were aliens, were wont to come to Jerusalem, to worship there at the time of the Jewish festivals. Though uncircumcised men might not eat the passover, nor offer sacrifices at the temple, they might pray there. And when our Lord cleansed the temple, and drove the buyers and sellers, with their merchandise, from the outer court, he reminded them that it was "written, that God's house should be called an house of prayer for all people." Is. lvi. 7. Matt. xxi. 13. Mark xi. 17. Luke xix. 46.


PAGE 125. Diss. xxxii. How to reconcile St. John's account concerning the time of our • Saviour's crucifixion with that of the three other Evangelists.'

St. John writes, ch. xix. 13, 14. "When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he brought Jesus forth, and sat in the judgment seat And it was the preparation of the passover, and about the sixth hour. And he saith unto the Jews: Behold your King." St. Mark says, xv. 25. “ And it was the third hour, and they crucified him."

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For reconciling these accounts our learned author says, p. 127, 128. And about six in the morning Pilate brought him forth to the Jews, and said: "Behold your king." This is the 'time which John refers to, and calls the "sixth hour," that is, of the civil day. The three following hours were employed in preparing for his crucifixion, and that of the two robbers, and carrying them to the place without the city. At the conclusion of those three hours he was 'crucified. Which Mark calls the "third hour," that is, of the natural day. And by the same ⚫ reckoning must be understood the "sixth hour," at which the darkness commenced: and also the "ninth hour," when he expired: as related by all the Evangelists, except John: who has • used the Roman way of reckoning in some other places also, as ch. i. 39. iv. 6, and xx. 19. And it is not improbable, that he writing so late might choose that way of reckoning the hours of the day, which was customary among the Romans: as the others had followed that, which was practised by the Jews.'

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To me it seems, that St. John reckons the hours of the day as the other Evangelists do, according to the custom of the Jews. Nor do I comprehend, how any historian could write intelligibly of transactions in Judea, without observing the Jewish custom, unless he gives particular notice of it.

In the history of the nobleman of Capernaum, who came to Jesus, "beseeching him to come down and heal his son," it is said, John iv. 51, 52. "And as he was now going down, his servants met him, and told him, saying, Thy son liveth. Then inquired he of them the hour when he began to amend and they said unto him, Yesterday, about the seventh hour the fever left him.” These persons must be supposed to speak according to the ordinary custom of the country in which they lived. And by the "seventh hour" must be meant about one of the clock afternoon, according to our computation.

And in chap. xi. 9. our Saviour himself says, very agreeably to the Jewish manner, “Are there not twelve hours in the day?" But I do not insist upon this as decisive, because the Romans, and others, might express themselves in like manner, meaning the natural day. John iv. 5, 6. "Then cometh Jesus unto a city called Sychar:

now Jacob's well was there Jesus therefore being wearied with his journey sat thus on the well. And it was about the sixth hour," that is, says Whitby, about noon.' So it is generally understood, and very rightly, as I apprehend.

* Αλλ' εδε τοις αλλοφύλοις, όσοι κατα θρησκειαν παρησαν. De B. J. 1. 6. cap. ix. 3.

Vid. supr. cap. i. 39. Causam sitis ostendit, quia et multum itineris fecerat, et jam erat meridies. Grot. in ver. 6.

Quia, inquit, lassus erat de viâ, et instabat meridies, maximus videlicet diei æstus. Bez. in loc.

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So says Cyril of Alexandria, not very far below the beginning of the fifth century, in his comment upon this text; whom I transcribe in the margin. And in like manner Isaac, surnamed the Great, who flourished about the middle of the same century. Among his works Dr. Asseman reckons five sermons concerning the Samaritan woman. The first of which begins in this manner. At the sixth hour, when the day was grown hot, our Saviour came to the well.' I think this must be right. For I do not see how those ancient writers, who lived not very remote from Judea, could be mistaken.

Josephus dwelt at Rome, and wrote after the destruction of Jerusalem. Nevertheless he also computes the hours in the same way. Giving an account of an assembly at Taricheas in Galilee, in a proseucha, or oratory; he says, 'There certainly would have been a great disturbance, if the assembly had not been dissolved by the approach of the sixth hour, at which time we are 'wont to go to dinner on the sabbaths.' And he assures us, That the priests at the temple were employed in killing paschal lambs from the ninth hour to the eleventh.'


John i. 35-39. " Again, the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples. And looking upon Jesus, as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God. And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. And they said to him: Rabbi, where dwellest thou? He saith unto them: Come and see. They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day for it was about the tenth hour." Or, as it is said in the margin of some of our bibles, 'two hours before night.' Which explication is very reasonable and obvious. The connexion leads us to think, that the day was declining, when these disciples went to the house where Jesus dwelt. Nor is there any consideration that should induce us to think of our ten in the forenoon. For inquisitive, attentive, and well-disposed men, as these were, might learn a great deal in the space of two hours' conversation with so excellent a master as they now applied to.

There still remains one text more to be considered. John xx. 19. "Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut, where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus, and stood in the midst, and saith unto them: Peace be unto you.'

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As our author here particularly refers to Dr. Benson, I must observe what he says: We have yet a more evident proof, that St. John followed the Roman method of reckoning the hours of the day. For speaking of that very day, on which our blessed Lord rose from the dead, he first mentions his appearing to Mary Magdalene. And then intimates, that he appeared to other of his disciples, that same day. But his words are very remarkable. "The same day, when it was evening, being the first day of the week :" and the disciples had bolted the doors for fear of the Jews: Then came Jesus and stood in the midst of them," &c. Now, no Jew would have used that language. No! When "the evening was come," they would have called it "the second day of the week." St. John, therefore, in this place, hath, in effect, (though not in express words) told his attentive readers, that he has followed the Roman computation of the hours of the day. For, according to that, it was still the first day of the week, and the same day on which our Lord arose: notwithstanding the sun was set, and the "evening come." evening come." And the Jews would, unquestionably, have reckoned it "the second day of the week."

This whole argument, as every one sees, depends upon the supposition, that this appearance of our Lord to his disciples was after sun-set, and perhaps late in the night: as Grotius, and some others have thought. But other learned men are rather of opinion, that our Lord showed himself to his disciples by day-light. Nor is it said, that the doors had been shut by the disciples because it was night, but " for fear of the Jews."


Ευαφορμώς επί τη πηγῇ καταλύοντα δεικνύει τον Ιησεν. Ήλιο γαρ ακμαιοτατην από μέσων αψίδων τοις επί της γης την ακτινα καταχεοντος, και ακρατοις τα σώματα καταφλεγοντος βολαις, το μεν ετι προσω βαδίζειν εκ αζήμιον. κ. λ. Cyr. H. in Joan T. IV. p. 179.

Primus sic incipit. Horâ sextâ, quum dies incaluisset, venit ad puteum Dominus. Ap. Assem. Bib. Or. T. i. p. 232. p. 79

- Και πάντως αν εις ςασιν εχώρησαν, ει μη την συνοδον διέλυσεν επέλθυσα έκτη ώρα, καθ' ήν τοις σαββασιν αρισοποιεισθαι νομιμον εσιν ύμιν. Jos. Vit. § 54. p.26.

· . . . καθ ̓ ἦν θυεσι μεν από εννάτης ώρας μέχρι ένδεκατης. De B. J. 1. 6. ix. 3.

See the History of the first planting the Christian Religion, second edit. App. n. 4. p. 52, 53.

f Jam multâ nocte. Grot. in Jo. xx. 19.

Existente vesperâ, et quidem satis serà, januis clausis. Quod licet a plerisque consideretur, ut signum provectæ noctis, nobis tamen minime ita videtur. Circumstantiis enim omnibus rite perpensis, videtur concludendum esse, quod adhuc ante sextam vespertinam hæc apparitio discipulis contigerit. Lampe in Joh. loc. T. III. p. 685. Et confer. Wolf.

in loc.

This appearance of our Lord was not made, until after the return of the two that had been at Emmaus. And it will be of great use to us to attend to that history, as it stands in St. Luke's Gospel, ch. xxiv. 13-36.

"And behold two of them went that same day to a village, called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about threescore furlongs. And they talked together of all these things, which had happened. Whilst they communed together, and reasoned, Jesus drew near, and went with them. And they drew nigh unto the village, whither they were going. And he made as though he would have gone farther. But they constrained him, saying: Abide with us. For it is toward evening, and the day is far spent. And he went in to tarry with them. And it came to pass, as he sat at meat with them: [or as he was sitting down to table with them:] he took bread, and blessed it, and brake unto them. And their eyes were opened, and they knew him, and he vanished out of their sight:" that is, he retired, and went away. "And they rose up the same hour, and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together, and them that were with them. And they told what things were done in the way, and how he was known unto them in breaking of bread. And as they thus spake, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them: Peace be unto you.'

When they entreated Jesus to "abide with them," they said: "It is toward evening, and the day is far spent," or has already begun to decline, OR TEEN 5, ni nexhined neg. It was past noon, and might be near our three afternoon. As they were sitting down to eat, looking more directly at Jesus, than they had yet done, they knew him. Our Lord thereupon retired, and they hastened to the disciples. Emmaus was about a two hours walk from Jerusalem. They might get thither more than an hour before sun-set. Soon after our Lord came in. He might have been there before them but he was willing that the disciples, and they that were with them, should be prepared for his appearing among them by the testimony of these two, added to the testimonies of Peter, and the women who had already seen him.

All this may be confirmed by the history of the miracle of the five loaves and five thousand. Matt. xiv. 15. "And when it was evening, his disciples came unto him, saying: This is a desert place, and the time is now past." Mark vi. 35. "And when the day was now far spent, his disciples came unto him, and said: This is a desert place, and now the time is far passed." Says Mr. Macknight in his instructive and edifying account of this miracle, The five thousand men, beside women and children, were all fed with such expedition, that though the thing was not so much as proposed to the disciples, till about three, all was over by five of the clock in the • afternoon.'

I have endeavoured to show, that St. John followed the Jewish computation of the hours of the day. I am not now concerned to reconcile him with the other Evangelists. Solutions of this difficulty may be found in Editors and Commentators. Some think, that St. John's original number was "the third hour," as in St. Mark: and that his number has been since altered. Others propose different solutions. But so far as I am able to judge, a solution, depending upon the supposition, that St. John followed the Roman computation of the hours of the day, is not likely to be right.


The learned men, with whom I have been arguing, think, that St. John wrote his Gospel very late, not before the year of our Lord ninety-seven, a little before his own death. But that is said without ground. It is more probable, that St. John wrote his Gospel, before the destruction of Jerusalem, about the year of Christ sixty-eight: though not till after the other three Evangelists, and after having read their Gospels, as all the Ancients testify. However, if he had written after the destruction of Jerusalem, it could not but be very proper to observe the Jewish computation in speaking of things done among the Jews, in their own country, and before that event.

See his Harmony of the Gospels. Sect. 60. p. 173.

b Vid. Mill. et Wetstein. Bengel. in Cris. et Gnomon. ad Jo.

xix. 20. Vid. et Grot. et Wolf. et Lampe in loc. et Bez. ad Marc xv. 29. Basnag. ann. 33. n. vii.

See vol. III. ch. ix. § 9, 10.


PAGE 141. Diss. xxxv. larly that of our Saviour.' Here it is said, p. 149, 150. The other Evangelists indeed take notice, that the women afterwards carried spices to the sepulchre. For, as Joseph and Nicodemus doubtless embalmed the body privately, after it was carried from the cross; the women, as they were not present, might know nothing of it. And considering the shortness of the time, they might imagine, that ⚫ nothing had been done: and therefore were willing to do what they could themselves."

The manner of embalming dead bodies among the Jews, and particu

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This is said by our learned author, for removing a difficulty, arising from what is said by St. John, and the other Evangelists. St. John says, ch. xix. 38-40. not only, that "Joseph of Arimathea," who is also mentioned by the other Evangelists, "besought Pilate, that he might take the body of Jesus, and that Pilate gave him leave:" but adds, "There came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night, and brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight:" including as I imagine, the bandages as well as the spices. "Then took they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes, with the spices, as the manner of the Jews is to bury," meaning such persons as were of eminence and distinction.

Nevertheless St. Mark says, xvi. 1, 2. "And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might anoint him. And very early in the morning, the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre, at the rising of the sun." See also Luke xxiii. 55, 56. and chap. xxiv. 1, 2.

As our Lord's female friends prepared spices, and brought them to the sepulchre; our author concludes that they knew nothing of what had been done by Joseph and Nicodemus.

went to Pilate, and begged

But it is manifest from all the Evangelists, that the women, who attended our Lord's crucifixion, attended also his interment. St. John himself says, ch. xix. 25. "Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene." And St. Matthew, ch. xxvii. 55-61. " And many women were there, beholding afar off Among whom was Mary Magdalene, and Mary, the mother of James and Joses, and the mother of Zebedee's children. Joseph of Arimathea the body of Jesus. And when Joseph had taken the body, he wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock: and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre and departed. And there was Mary Magdalene and the other Mary,, sitting over against the sepulchre." And St. Mark expressly says, xv. 47. " And Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of Joses, beheld where he was laid." See likewise ch. xvi. 1-3. From which two Evangelists, and also from Luke xxiv. 1, 2. it appears, that the women knew every thing concerning our Saviour's interment, to the placing of the stone at the door of the sepulchre. But they knew nothing of the watch or guard of soldiers, set there afterwards, as related, Matt. xxvii. 62-66. And St. Luke says, ch. xxiii. 52-56, “That Joseph having begged the body of Jesus, took it down, and wrapped it in linen, and laid it in a sepulchre that was hewn in stone, wherein never man was laid And "the women also, which came with him from Galilee, followed after, and beheld the sepulchre, and how the body was laid." Or, as in Dr. Clarke's paraphrase, And the women of Galilee, who had stood at a distance, seeing the crucifixion, followed the body of their Lord, when it was taken away, and observed where Joseph laid it.'

To imagine therefore, that these women knew nothing of what had been done by Joseph. and Nicodemus, is to suppose them extremely negligent about an object that engaged all their attention. I am not for obviating, or removing difficulties, by denying any parts of a history that are manifest. Nor do I recollect one Commentator who has been of opinion, that these good women were unacquainted with the embalming of our Lord's body, so far as it had been done, before he was laid in the sepulchre.

Matt. xxvii, 57-60. Mark xv. 42-46. Luke xxiii. 50-53.

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