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own distorted brain; and should we fections and law of God, must be not equally pity and pray for those regarded also, as the true source of religionists, who are continually ex that sorrow and contrition for sin, hibiting, in their devotions, feelings which Christianity requires in all its and excitements for which they can genuine professors. To profess sorassign no good reason.
row for a crime, of which we are not The Athenians erected an altar certain whether we are guilty, certo the unknown God. Acts xvii. 23. tainly indicates the height of folly. But, because their devotions were How then can any one know that he very
much mixed with superstition, is guilty of the transgression of any the apostle Paul condenined their law, until he knows what the law is? worship. Here we have an exam We may tell a man, in general ple presented to our view of the terms, that he is a sinner; but we kind of converts that the apostle are convinced, judging according to Paul wished to make. In his ad the principles of human nature, that dress to the Athenians he tells them, we shall never impress upon his that he declared unto them that God, mind a conviction of guilt, unless “ whom they ignorantly worship we can clearly show him that he ped.” Acts xvii. 23. Thus he shows has really transgressed the acknowus plainly that no worship
can be ac ledged standard of duty, and thereceptable to the Supreme Being, ex by incurred the just displeasure of cept that which springs from a cor his God. For if we cannot convince rect knowledge of his perfections. the man that he has broken, in
any There may be groaning and violent respect, the divine law, he will neagitation no doubt, connected with a cessarily continue impenitent. No scriptural revival of religion; but one will sincerely repent or feel they constitute no part of experi sorrow for sin, until he really is mental godliness; and ought to be convicted of transgression. Hence repressed by the discreet disciple the necessity of laying clearly beof Jesus, because they disturb the fore mankind, the nature and extent devotion of many, and cause our of the divine law, in order to show good to be accounted evil.
them how far short they may have The foundation of all true reli come in fulfilling its requisitions. gion then, must be conceived to con This must be regarded as the only sist in a proper knowledge of the rational
in which we may experfections of that God whom we pect God to grant unto men repentprofess to worship. The first com ance unto life. A feeling for sin, mandment is, " That we should produced in any other way than by love the Lord our God with all our enlightening the understanding and heart, with all our soul, with all our conscience, will be but short in its strength, and with all our mind.” duration, and unfruitful in its conThis will naturally teach us what sequences. part, in our religious profession, our But, should the conviction of sin affections should occupy. We must be produced in the mind of any one, know, surely, something respecting by the Spirit of God, in consequence the Being that we are called on to of his having obtained a correct idea love, before we can love him. To of the perfections of God, and of the profess love towards God, therefore, requisitions of the divine law, we while we do not know what we real may naturally suppose that such a ly love, is just to act over again the conviction will lead him, 'in good part of the Athenians, who, in con earnest, to inquire after that remesequence of their ignorance of the dy which has been provided for the Supreme Being, became very much restoration of fallen man. This is addicted to superstitions.
not the effect of a mere slavish fear, A correct knowledge of the per excited by horrible descriptions of
a future place of torment; but of a On Timothy and Ephesus. sense of guilt, arising from a con The sacred scriptures, the gesciousness of having violated a just nuineness and authenticity of which and holy law; and of having offend
are supported by the most ample ed against a kind and merciful God,
proofs, evince their divine authowho has an undeniable claim to the
rity by their spirituality, majesty, services of all his creatures. Hence, simplicity of style, by the accordperceiving the justice of that sentence which the law pronounces
ance of the parts, the design of the
whole, and their effects upon the upon all transgressors, he rejoices consciences and lives of men. They to be informed, in the gospel, that give us the truths and precepts esmercy and pardon may be obtained sential to faith and practice; but, through the peace-speaking blood of without addition or diminution, they Jesus Christ.
must be studied with diligence and This information, when believed, humility. If the facts they exhibit will, no doubt, produce in his mind concerning Timothy and Ephesus, joy; but, in consequence of his mind afford “ a pattern of the order of the being properly enlightened, and his primitive church in the times of the feelings duly regulated, his joy will apostles,"* the example must be of be orderly and temperate, not wild high obligation. But it unfortunateand extravagant.
ly happens, that the example always This joy, produced in his mind
supports the views, with which we by a right view of the scheme of enter upon the investigation. gospel salvation, will naturally ex
To that writer, Timothy furnishcite in his bosom love to God, who
es a pattern of a modern diocesan sent his Son into the world to re
bishop; but to us, the thing is as deem mankind; and also love and
defective as the name, and we find
neither the one, nor the other, in gratitude to Jesus Christ, who thus,
the word of God. on their behalf, presented himself a willing sacrifice. This love and
If Timothy was as long resident gratitude will necessarily lead him
at Ephesus, as this writer imagines; to forsake sin, and to enter upon a
and ordained the original elders, new mode and course of action
that is, presbyters or bishops over which must be regarded as the true
that church, which we suppose ; yet and natural results of his faith and
nothing was there accomplished by
him different from “ the work of an repentance.
evangelist.” His commission was Thus would we have the feelings given him before Paul had visited and emotions, which professors, in the school of Christianity, exhibit,
Ephesus; and without relation to
the people of one place, more than traced to their source and tried by
another. It was in its nature unitheir fruits, before we would be dis
versal, extending alike to the whole posed to denominate them the off
church, and conferring every power spring of religion. Let every one,
necessary to planting, watering and then, who has experienced such emotions and feelings, compare them
governing the church, wherever he
should come, if not superseded by carefully with that standard of truth which God has given us as a guide
the presence of an apostle. If there
fore he became fixed at Ephesus, it to our experience, that he may know
was either so far a repeal of that whether the Spirit of God is really commission, which he had received, witnessing
with his spirit that he is or an abandonment of the exercise a child of God, or whether he may be under the influence merely of a heated and disordered imagination. * The Christian Observer, republished
T. G. M-I,
in the Episcopal Magazine, March, 1821. VOL. I.
of its powers.
It is nevertheless desirable to Tim. iii. 14, he promises, if Timoknow, with precision, the facts. thy come shortly to Rome, with him That Paul and Timothy were to
to visit the Hebrews. Also it seems gether at Ephesus, and that Paul strange, if Timothy had been at left him there, when he went on Ephesus, when the epistle to the some occasion into Macedonia, may Ephesians was sent by Tychicus be plainly inferred from 1 Tim. i. (Ephes. vi. 21.), that no notice whatS: “I besought thee to abide still ever should have been taken of the at Ephesus, when I went into Ma.
beloved youth. cedonia.” The time, to which there Another hypothesis is, that Paul, is here an allusion, is the more easi when the Jews deterred him from ly ascertained, because the apostle sailing from Corinth, and he deteris recorded to have been twice only mined to go through Macedonia to at Ephesus; on the first occasion he Jerusalem, besought Timothy to merely called on his voyage from abide still at Ephesus: to which, Corinth to Jerusalem, on the se when Timothy agreed, he went forcond, he went from Ephesus into ward to Troas, with Aristarchus Macedonia.
and the rest; and whilst waiting This writer assigns a later pe there for Paul, Timothy received riod, and supposes that Paul, when the first epistle from the apostle, he landed at Miletus on a subse written in Macedonia. But this is quent voyage to Jerusalem, left Ti a departure from the correct meanmothy with the elders of the chureh ing of the passage, which implies, at Ephesus, “to govern them in his that Paul besought Timothy to abide absence.” But nothing of the kind still (oporuetyas,* to continue, or rewas spoken on the occasion, and main,) at the place where Timothy instead of a temporary absence, was, at the time he was thus enPaul assured the elders, they should treated. Those, who went before
see his face no more.” In 1 Tim. with Timothy to Troas, are reprei. 3. it is not said, when I went to sented to have accompanied Paul Jerusalem, but expressly, “I be into Asia. Acts xx. 4. This circumsought thee to abide still at Ephe stance renders it an improbable supsus, when I went into Macedo position, that Paul should write so nia." It is asserted that the apos long and important a letter to his tle, having placed Timothy at fellow traveller, whom he must Ephesus prior to his first impri- overtake in a few days; and wholly sonment, "wrote both his epistles unaccountable that he should say in to Timothy while a prisoner at the letter (ch. iii. 14, 15.) “ these Rome.” But Timothy was with things write I unto thee, hoping to Paul at Rome, during a part of the come unto thee shortly; but if I first imprisonment, for he is joined tarry long," &c. That Paul should in the epistles to the Philippians, have thus purposed to come to TiColossians and Philemon. Saluta mothy unto Ephesus, but really at tions also might have been expect Troas; and in a few weeks aftered in the first epistle to Timothy, wards, without any apparent cause had it been written from Rome, as for a change of views, should have in those to the Philippians, Colossians, Philemon, the Hebrews, and Igormévw occurs only in Matt. xv. 32, the second to Timothy. He was
Mark vij. 2. Acts xi. 23. xviii. 18. 1 Ti. indeed absent from Rome during a
mothy, i. 3. v. 5. If Paul and Timothy
had been both absent from Ephesus, part of the time of the first impri when he besought him to abide still, &c. sonment, but Paul expected his re instead of figo O Merval, he would have turn (Heb. xiii. 23.), and so far was adopted #gocmevert, and instead of sayhe from hoping to come unto Timo ing πορευομενος εις Μακεδονιαν, his lan. thy, shortly, as expressed in 1st guage would have been r& XOMEYOS, &c.
said at Miletus to the elders of the he may have been at Colosse, if he church of Ephesus, "I know that left Trophimus at Miletus; but the ye all-shall see my face no more,” place is uncertain. He entertain(Acts xx. 25.) exhibits a fluctuation ed a purpose subsequent to those, approximating versatility. If Ti of visiting Judea, with Timothy. mothy was on this occasion left with Heb. xiii. 18, 19. This may have the officers of the church of Ephe been previously accomplished, and sus, and especially, if he was to be Timothy left in the neighbourhood come thenceforth their diocesan bi. of Troas, where he remained till shop, it is strange, that not a word the second epistle was sent to him. of either of those circumstances But if these purposes were effecshould have been mentioned to tuated, which is matter of uncerthose elders. But so far was the tainty, there is not a word to prove apostle from mentioning their sub even an intention to visit Ephesus. ordination unto, or support of the The letter to the Ephesians neither authority of young Timothy, that mentions Timothy, nor any coming he enjoins them: "Take heed unto of Paul. But Tychicus, à faithful yourselves, and to all the flock, over
minister of the Lord, and compawhich the Holy Ghost hath made nion of the apostle, was named as you overseers STICHOTOUS, bishops), sent to them. To the presbyters of to feed the church of God,” &c. But Ephesus Paul had said, that he as not a word is said of leaving Ti knew they should " see his face no mothy at Miletus, so it is improba more,” (Acts xx. 25.) and it is noble, that he should have parted from where shown that they did. The Paul there, because we find him supposition, that nevertheless Paul with that apostle, when he arrived afterwards went to Ephesus with at Rome, where he is joined with Timothy, left him there with a rehim in the letters which have been quest to tarry till he should return mentioned.
to him, and then went into MacedoOthers have supposed, that Paul nia, and wrote his first epistle to visited Ephesus after his first im Timothy, is entirely gratuitous, and prisonment, left Timothy there, without the least reason appearing went into Macedonia, and from in any exigencies of the Ephesian thence wrote to him his first let church; who had had three years of ter. They build upon the circum Paul's labours, and had been more stances, that whilst at Rome, he than five years afterwards blessed had written to Philemon to prepare with the regular administration of him lodgings at Colosse; and that ordinances by pastors of their own, he had told the Philippians by let and some help from Tychicus and ter, he trusted he should come perhaps others. shortly to them.
That Timothy was left at EpheThis opinion is much more re sus, when Paul, expelled by the spectable, than either of the former; riot, went into Macedonia, is the and although several of the fathers opinion, which is most obvious, and have positively asserted, what is best supported. Before he wrote incompatible with it, that Paul went his first epistle to the Corinthians, into Spain, after his first imprison Paul sent Timothy and Erastus ment, according to his purpose ex into Macedonia (ch. iv. 17.); but pressed, Rom. xv. 29.; yet, however he himself remained in Asia for credible these holy men were, the some time. Acts xix. 22. In the writings, which bear their names, first letter to the Corinthians, which deserve often but little regard. he wrote at Ephesus, and sent by That Paul was at Philippi, after his Titus to Corinth, he mentioned his imprisonment, is probable, because purpose of coming to them, but not he left Erastus at Corinth. Also immediately; of which Luke also
informs us (Acts xix. 21.), and de and Greece. Accordingly we find sired them, if Timothy came to him in Macedonia, when Paul
wrote them (1 Cor. xvi. 10, 11.), to con. his second epistle to the Corinduct him forth in peace, that he thians, ch. i. i. The apostle went might come to Paul, then at Ephe- from Macedonia into Greece (Acts sus, for he looked for him, with the
XX. 2.), as he had promised in that brethren. When he closed his first letter (ch. xiii. 1.), and abode there letter to the Corinthians, he was three months. Acts xx. 3. Timoexpecting Timothy's return; which
thy was with him at Corinth, for he that letter might also have hasten sends his salutations to the Roed. Paul remained at Ephesus, on mans (Rom. xvi. 21.) in that famous this occasion, the space of three epistle written from thence.* years. Acts xx. 31. 'I'here is there
That it may be seen, that there fore no reason to suppose, that he was sufficient time for Paul to have was disappointed in his expectation written from Macedonia to Timoof the arrival of Timothy from Co thy at Ephesus, and for Timothy to rinth at Ephesus, before he went have spent some months at Epheinto Macedonia ; and if so, he might sus, before he came to Paul in Mahave left him there, as he at some cedonia, it is necessary only to adperiod certainly did. 1 Tim. i. 3. vert to 1 Cor. xvi. 8, where he He had intended to go by Corinth mentions his purpose of remaining into Macedonia (2 Cor. 1. 15, 16.), at Ephesus till Pentecost; of which, but changed his mind, and went by if Timothy did not leave Corinth Troas thither. 2 Cor. ii. 12. 13. before this letter reached the CorinWhilst in Macedonia, he wrote, we thian church, he would receive insuppose, to Timothy his first let formation by the epistle itself. ter (1 Tim. i. 3.), and proposed to Luke tells us (Acts xx. 6.), that him to remain at Ephesus, until he they sailed away from Philippi after should call there on his way
to Je the days of unleavened bread or rusalem. 1 Tim. iii. 14, 15. The Easter, and (ver. 16.) that Paul words imply, that Paul might tarry hoped to reach Jerusalem by Pensome time; and that he was some tecost, which were, at the least, of time there before he went into the following year. That Paul exGreece, is fairly implied in the ex pected to spend so much time in pression, “And when he had gone Macedonia and Greece, may be colover those parts, and had given them lected from his intimation (1 Cor. much exhortation, he came into xvi. 6.) that he might spend the Greece.” Acts xx. 2. Timothy, winter with the Corinthian church. who is nowhere represented as with The apostle's purpose of sailing him until he came into Macedonia, from Corinth was disappointed by probably came to him there. After the insidiousness of his own counPaul had besought him to abide still trymen; he therefore went up into at Ephesus, which gave him liberty Macedonia, that he might pass over to exercise his discretion, several to Troas, with his companions. Timotives must have influenced him mothy was among those who crossed to go to the apostle. The enemies first. Acts xx. 3–5. Paul wishing at Ephesus were numerous and vio to reach Jerusalem by Pentecost, lent; Timothy was young; his af did not call, as he had intended, at fection for Paul ardent; the request Ephesus (1 Tim. iii. 14, 15.), but of Paul that he should still abide landed at Miletus, and sent for the at Ephesus was not peremptory; elders of the church at Ephesus. and Paul tarried a long time. Also The directions of the apostle in Timothy had been, from their commencement, familiarly acquainted with the churches in Macedonia
* Compare Acts xviii. 2. with Rom. xvi. 3.