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able, learned, and important work on the Genuineness of the Gospels. I can also refer to Mr. Norton's work, with full satisfaction, for a refutation of the opinion that one Evangelist copied from one or both of the others. I value much his close and accurate investigations respecting the actual correspondences in the first three Gospels; and generally agree with him in his observations on the earliest origin of these correspondences: they must, of course, have chiefly originated in the frequently-repeated narrations of the Apostles and other personal witnesses. Yet I cannot doubt, that, beginning with an early period, written records, more or less comprehensive, would be drawn up, at different times, by those who had heard those narrations, or had themselves been among the hearers of the Lord Jesus.

In the interval between my first perusal of Veysie's Examination of Marsh's Hypothesis, when published, in 1808, and a subsequent review of it in 1830, my own views had gradually come, by independent examination, to a great accordance with Mr. Veysie's, in respect to the early existence of various documents, and the employment of some of them by the first three Evangelists; and on reconsideration of the subject, I am satisfied that Luke, especially, possessed several written records, and that one or more of these he had in common with Mark: but that, nevertheless, many of the correspondences had their origin solely in oral narrations.-The only course that will lead the inquirer to a permanently satisfactory result, is, to examine each section separately, for himself; and I am persuaded that the general conclusion will be, that the Evangelists employed, in different ways and degrees, written records, together with oral information, wherever their own personal knowledge was insufficient. As to Matthew and John, their chief sources of information must have been personal and direct; and with respect to those discourses which these Apostles have severally given in so much detail, I can scarcely doubt that, at a very early period, and with the aid promised them by their Lord, John xiv. 26, they committed these to writing, as we now find them,-storing up the precious records for the days appointed by divine providence, when, perhaps under the special direction of him who was always with them, Matt. xxviii. 20, they finally prepared their Gospels, and sent them forth into the world; the one to lead the reader to the life-giving faith, that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God; and the other, to preserve the believers in Palestine from the destructive desertion of their Lord, and to teach all men, every where, to observe all things, whatsoever he had commanded them. These invaluable records will, through all ages, be among the blessed means by which he who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, leadeth to the Father, and conducteth to the mansions where all ignorance and error shall be annihilated by the perfect knowledge of the truth.

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DISSERTATION III.

ON THE POLITICAL AND GEOGRAPHICAL STATE OF PALESTINE, AT THE PERIOD OF OUR LORD'S MINISTRY.

SECT. I. Geographical and Political Divisions.

PALESTINE is usually considered as extending along the coast of the Mediterranean, from a little north of Sidon to some distance south of Gaza. Beginning at the former point, the boundary goes inland, across the chains of Libanus and Antilibanus, above the sources of the Jordan, and onwards to the east of Hermon, which is a mountain-range branching off southerly from Antilibanus. It then bends southwards, till it arrives at the Arnon, which forms the southern boundary on the east. It thus divides Palestine from Syria on the north and north-east, and from Arabia Deserta on the east, The Dead Sea completes the eastern boundary; and from the southern part of this, an undefined boundary runs across to the Mediterranean between Palestine and Arabia Petræa.

It is, however, clear from Josephus (Bell. Jud, III. iii. 1) that, at the period of the Gospel history, the region along the northern part of the coast, beginning from the south of Mount Carmel, belonged to Phoenice; and this fact is of considerable importance in determining the extent of the chief scene of our Lord's public labours, since it shows that Galilee did not extend to the shores of the Mediterranean. With this modification, the boundaries may be taken as already stated; and as far as our present imperfect knowledge of the exact position of places enables us to judge, we may consider Palestine as extending from about 33° N. Lat. to about 31° and from about 343° E. Long. to somewhat more than 36°; making its length about 160 miles, and its average breadth between 60 and 70. Its extent may therefore be compared to that of Wales, with Shropshire, Herefordshire, and Monmouthshire.

The great natural feature of the country is the Jordan, which has its rise in the neighbourhood of Antilibanus, passes through the marshy Lake of Samochonitis (the Waters of Merom), and, after having received numerous mountain-streams, enters the Lake of Galilee. It then takes a winding course southwards, and enters into the Dead Sea. Other particulars will be given hereafter; but these are stated for the sake of geographical arrangement.-For brevity, the Jordan before it enters the Lake of Galilee may be termed North Jordan; and afterwards, South Jordan.

When the Israelites first obtained possession of the Land of Canaan, Joshua divided it among the Tribes-that of Levi excepted, which was left without territorial possessions. Ephraim and Manasseh, the two sons of Joseph, being taken in place of their father, there were still reckoned Twelve Tribes. Of these, Manasseh had two portions, one on each side of the Jordan. On the east of the Jordan, beginning at the Arnon, were Reuben, and then Gad, southwards of the Lake of Galilee, and East Manasseh, along the Lake and North Jordan. On the west, along North Jordan, lay Nephthalim; and south of it, westwards from the Lake, lay Zabulon : Asher extended along the coast, to the west of these. South of Zabulon, from South Jordan to the Mediterranean, lay Issachar, then West Manasseh, then Ephraim. Below Ephraim, along the Mediterranean, lay Dan, and then Simeon; east of Dan and Simeon, extending to the Dead Sea, lay Judah, and between Judah and Ephraim, along the Jordan, lay Benjamin.-This general view of the situation of the Tribes is sufficient for our purpose. Indeed the division was entirely lost after the Babylonish Captivity; and two only of the Tribes, Zabulon and Nephthalim, are mentioned in the New Testament, viz. by St. Matthew, in citing the prophecy of Isaiah.-Harm. p. 53.

The territory of the four southern Tribes, Judah, Benjamin, Dan, and Simeon, corresponded with JUDEA, but from the representations of Josephus we may conclude that Judæa extended northwards along the Mediterranean, to the territory of Ptolemais. The southern part was denominated 1DUMEA, as was also the district lying below it, in Arabia.

Northwards of the inland part of Judæa, lay SAMARIA, which extended as far as Ginæa, on the south side of the Plain of Esdraelon, and along the Jordan to near Scythopolis,-much corresponding with Ephraim and West Manasseh. Its southern limit is not ascertainable, since the site of Anuath which Josephus mentions as the boundary is not known.

• See Bell. Jud. lib. 111. cap. iii. 5. Josephus says μexpi ПIroλeμaïdoç, as far as Ptolemais; but as he had said before that the Phoenicians had the territory along the Mediterranean to below Mount Carmel, I presume he meant the territory of Ptolemais.

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