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perity against the Syrians at Ramoth Gilead, vulgarly to represent to him the success, he should have against his enemies. But, in all this business, the mode of Jeremiah's language insinuates a literal sense, by speaking altogether in the third person, as if the relation concerned somebody else, and not himself; and so must be of some real thing, and that which to sense and observation had its reality. and not only a reality in apprehension or imagination. So ch. xxxii. we seem to have an infinuation of a real history in Jeremiah's purchase of a field of Hanameel his uncle's fon, from the mode of exprellion which is there observable.
But other times we meet with things graphically described with all the circumstantial pomp of the business, when yet it could be nothing else but a dramatical thing; as ch. xxxv. where the prophet goes and finds out the chief of the Rechabites particularly dea Icribed, and brings them into such a particular chamber as is there set forth by all its bounds, and there fets pots and cups full of wine before them, and bids them drink wine. Just in the same mode with this we have another story told, ch. xxx. 15. and 17, &c. of his taking a wine-cup from God, and his carrying it up and down to all nations far and near, Jerusalem and the cities of Judah, and the kings and princes thereof; to Pharaoh king of Egypt; and his servants, princes, people; to all the Arabians, and kings of the land of Uz; to the kings of the land of the Philistines, Edoni, Moab, Ammon;, the kings of Tyre and Sidon, and of the alles ibeyond the sea, Dedan, Tema, Buz; the kings of Zimri, of the Medes and Persians, and all the kings of the North : and all thefes he said, he made to drink of this cup. And in this falhion, ch. xxvii. he is sent up and down with yokes, to put upon the necks of several kings : all
Il which can have no other sense than that which is ir.erely imaginary, though we be not told that all this was acted only, in a vision, for the nature of the thing would not permit any real performance thereof.
The like we must say of Ezekiel's "res gesta,” his eating a roll given him of God, ch. ni. and cli, iv.. It is especially remarkable how ceremonioufly, all things are related concernir.g his taking a tile, and pourtraying the city of Jerusalem upon it, his laying fiege to it; all which I suppose will be evident to have been merely, dramatical, if we carefully examine all things in it, notwithstanding that God tells him he should in all this be a-lign to the people. Which is not so to be understood, as if they were to observe in such real actions in a sensible way what their own fates should be; for he is here commanded to lie continually before a tile 390 days, which is full 13 months, upon his left side, and after that 40 more qpon his right, and to bake his bread that he thould eat all this while with dung, &c.
So ch. v. he is commanded to take a barber's razor, and to have his head and beard, then to weig! his hair in a pair of scales, and divide it into three parts; and after the days of his fiege should be fulfilled, spoken of before, then to burn a third part of it in the
midst of the city, and to smite about the other third with å knife, and to scatter the other third to the wind. All which as it is most unlikely in itself ever to have been really done, so was it against the law of the priests to shave the corners of their heads and the corners of their beards, as Maimonides observes. But that Ezekiel himself was a priest, is manifest from ch. i. ver. 3. Upon these passages of Ezekiel
, Maimonides hath thus soberly given his judgement, * More Nevochim," Par. II. c. 46. “ Abfit ut Deus pro* phetas fuos ftultis vel ebriis fimiles reddat, eofque ftultorum aut
furioforum actiones facere jubeat : præterquam quod præceptum “ illud ultimum legi repugnasset, &c. Far be it from God to render ¢ his prophets like to fools and drunken men, and to prescribe " them the actions of fools and mad men ; besides that this latt “ injunction would have been inconsistent with the law ; for Eze“ kiel was a great priest, and therefore obliged to the observation “ of these two negative precepts, viz. of not having the corners “ of his head and corners of his beard ; and therefore this was .: done only in a prophetical vision.” The fame sentence likewise he passeth upon that story of Efaiah, ch. xx. 3. his walking naked and bare-foot, wherein Esaiah was no otherwise' a sign to Ægypt and Æthiopia, or rather Arabia, where he dwelt not, and so could not more literally be a type therein, than Ezekiel was here to the Jews.
Again, ch. xii, we read of Ezekiel's removing his houshold-stuff in the night, as a type of the captivity, and of his digging with his hands through the wall of his house, and of the people's coming to take notice of this strange action, with many other uncouth ceremonies of the whole business, which carry no lhew of probability; and yet, ver. 6. God declares upon this to him, “ I have fet' thee *** for a sign to the house of Israel ;” and ver. 9. “Son of man, “ hath not the house of Israel, the rebellious houfe, Taid unto thee, "wliat doest thou?” As if all this had been done really; whicli indeed seems to be nothing else but a prophetical scheme. Neither was the prophet any real fign, but only imaginary, as having the tv pe of all those fates symbolically represented in his phancy which were to befall the Jews; which fenfe Kimchi, a genuine commentator, follows, with the others mentioned. And, it may be, according to this same notion is that in ch. xxiv. to be understood of the death of the prophet's wife, with the manner of those funeral solemnities and obsequies which he performed for her.
But we thall proceed no further in this argument, which I hope is by this time fufficiently cleared, that we are not in any prophetical narratives of this kind to understand any thing else but the history of the visions themselves which appeared to them, except we be led, by fome farther argument of the reality of the thing in a way of iensible appearance, to determine it to have been any sendi
CHA P. VII. Of that degree of divine inspiration properly called Ruach hakkodesh, i.e. The Holy Spirit. The nature of it described out of Jewish an
riquities. Wherein this Spiritus Sanctus differed from prophecy Arielly so called, and from the spirit of holiness in purified souls. It but books of the Old Testament were afcribed by the Jews to Ruach hakkodcíh. Of the Urim and Thunimim.
THU'S we have done with that part of divine inspiration which was more technically and properly by the Jews called Prophecy. We shall now a little fearch into that which is hagiographical, or, as they call it, “ The dictate of the Holy Spirit ;' in which the book of Psalms, Job, the works of Solomon and others, are comprised. This we find very appositely thus defined by Maimonides, More Nevochim, Par. 11. c. 45.“ Cùm homo in se sentit rem vel “ facultatem quampiam exoriri, & fuper fe quiefcere, quæ eum “ impellit ad loquendum, &c. When a man perceives fome power “ to arise within him, and reft upon him, which urgeth him to
speak, so that he discourse concerning the sciences or arts, and " utter psalms or hymns, or profitable and wholesome rules of * good living, or matters political and civil, or such as are divine ; ss and that, whilft he is waking, and hath the ordinary vigour and “ use of his fentes, this is such a one of whom it is said, that he ist speaks by the Holy Spirit.” In this definition we may seem to have the strain of the book of Psalms, Proverbs and Ecclesiaftes fully decypliered to us. In like manner we find this degree of inspiration described by R. Albo, Maam. Ill. c. 10 after he had set down
“ Now “ you what is that other jour of divine infiux, through which none
can enter by his own natural ability ; it is when a man utters " words of wisdom, or song, or divine praise, in pure and elegant " language, besides his wont: fo that every one that knows him " admires him for this excellent knowledge and composure of “ words ; but yet he himself knows not from whence this faculty " came to him, but is as a child that learns a tongue, and knows " not from whence he had this faculty. Now the excellence of this
degree of divine inspiration is well known to all, for it is the " fame with that which is called the Holy Spirit.” Or, if you please, we shall render these definitions of our former Jewith doctors in the words of Proclus, who hath very lappily set forth the nature of this piece of divine inspiration, according to their mind, in these words, lib. V. in “ Plat. Tim." 'O de xapaxt he évb80125inės, osceλάμπων ταϊς νεεραις επιβολαίς, καθαρός τι και ζεμνός, ως από ταίρος τελικάμG- των Θεών, εξηλλαγμG- τε και υπερέχων των ανθρωπίνων εννοιών, αερος δε ομς και καταπληκικός, και χαρίτων ανάμεσες, κάλλες τε πλήρης,
יפתח לאיש טה טער אחר שלא ישער ,the other degrees fuperior to it Nov to explain to * בו האדם מער טבעו יידבר בדברי מחמה ובו
xai (uitou o duovad om nupiewuli'. “This degree or enthufia“ ftical character, shining to bright with the intellectual influences, " is pure and venerable, receiving its perfection from the father
of the Gods, being diftinct from human conceptions, and far " transcending them, always conjoined with delightfulness and $s amazement, full of beauty and comelinefs, concise, yet withall $6 exceeding accurate,
This kind therefore of divine inspiration was always more pacate and serene then the other of prophecy, neither did it fo much fatigate and act upon the imagination. For though these Hagiographi, or holy writers, ordinarily expressed themfelves in parables and fimilitudes, which is the proper work of fancy ; yet they seem only to have made use of such a diefs of language to set off their own fense of divine things, which in itself was more naked and simple, the more advantageously, as we fcc commonly in all other kind of writings. And feeing there was no labour of the imagination in this
way of Revelation, therefore it was not communicated to themi by any dreams or visions, but while they were waking, and their fenfes were in their full vigour, their minds calm ; it breathing upon tliem, Enn. vi. lib. 9. c. 11. us èv yanirn, as Plotinus de fcribes his pious enthufiaft, “Αρπαθείς ή ένθεσιάσας ήσυχή εν έρημο καλαςασει γεγένηται, ατρεμα τη αυτα εσία υδαμε αποκλίναν. For indeed this enthusiastical spirit fcated itself principally in the higher and purer faculties of the foul, which were ύστερ απαύγεια προς αυγήν, that I may allude to the ancient opinion of Empedocles, who held there were two funs, the one archetypal; which was always in the inconspicable hemisphere of the world, but the beams thereof ihin. ing upon this world's fun were reflected to us, and so further enlightened us.
Now this kind of inspiration, as it always acted pious fouls into ftrains of devotion, or moved them strongly to dictate matters of true piety and goodness, did manifest itself to be of a divine nature ; and as it came in abruptly upon the minds of those holy men without courting their privatc thoughts, but transported them from that temper of mind they were in before, so that they perceived themselves captivated by the power of some higher lighit than that which their own understanding commonly poured out upon them, they might know it to be more immediately from God.
For indeed that seems to be the main thing wherein this Holy Spirit differed from that constant spirit and frame of holiness and goodness dwelling in hallowed minds, that it was too quick, potent, and transporting a thing, and was a kind of vital form to that light of divine reafon which they were perpetually possessed of. And therefore fometimes it runs out into à foresight or prediction of things to come, though it may be those previsions were less underfood by the prophet himself; as (if it were needful) we might indance in fome of David's prophecies, which seem to have been revealed to him not so much for himself (as the apostle speaks) aş
for us. But it did not always spend itself in strains of devotion or dictates of virtue, wisdom and prudence; and therefore (if I may take leave here to express my conjecture) I should think the ancient Jews called this degrec " Spiritus Sanctus," not because it flows from the third person in the Trinity (which I doubt they thought not of in this business), but because of the near affinity and alliance it hath with that fpirit of holiness and true goodness that always lodgeth in the breasts of good men. And this seems to be insimuated in an old proverbial speech of the Jewith masters, quoted by Maimonides in the fore-quoted place, “ Majeftas divina habitat * fuper eum, & loquitur per Spiritum Sanctum." Though some think it might be so called as being the lowest degree of divine infpiration : for sometimes the ancienteft monuments of Jewish learning call all prophecy by the name of “ Spiritus Sanctus.” So in Pirke R. Eliezer, c. 39. “ R. Phineas inquit, requievit Spritus “ Sanctus super Josephum ab ipfius juventute usque ad diem ! obitûs ejus, atque direxit eum in omnem fapientiam, &c. The " Holy Spirit refted upon Jofeph from his youth till the day of ? his death, and guided him into all wisdom, &c." Though it may be all that might be but an hagiographical spirit; for indeed the Jews are wont, as we thewed before, to distinguih Jofeph's dreams from prophetical. But this “ Spiritus Sanctus” in the same chapter (to put all out of doubt) is attributed to Efaiah and Ezekiel, which were known prophets ; and chap. xxxiii. “R Phineas ait,
poftquam omnes illi interfecti fuerant, viginti annis in Babel rey quievit Spiritus Sanctus fuper Ezekielem, & eduxit eum ex con** valle dora, & oftendit ei multa offa, &c.” And among those five things that the Jews always supposed the fecond temple to be inferior to the first in, one was the want of the wypt 117 “Spiritus 5 Sanctus," or fpirit of prophecy.
But we are here to consider this “ Spiritus Sanctus" more strictly, and as we have formerly defined it out of Jewish antiquity. And here we fhall first shew what books of the Old Testament were ascribed to this degree by the Jews. The Old Testament was by the Jews divided into Di DXD) 177 “ the law, the 66
prophets, and the dying.ox.” And this division is infinuated in Luke xxiv. 44. “ And Jesus said unto them, These are the * words which I spake unto you while I was yet with you, that " all things must be fulfilled which were written concerning me “ in the law of Moses, and in the Prophets, and in the Psalms ;" where by the Psalms may seem to be meant the Hagiographa; for the writers of these Hagiographa might be termed Pfalinodiits, for fome reasons which we Thall touch upon hereafter in this discourse. But to return; the Old Testament being anciently divided into these parts, it may not be amiss to consider the order of these parts as it is jaid down by the Talmudical doctors in “ Gemara Bava Bathra, c. 1. towards the end, 2217823 50 77.0 22nun “Our doctors “ have delivered unto us this order of the prophets, Joshua, Judges, " Samuel, Kings, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Isaiah, and the twelve Prophets,