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Of the Truth of the Christian Religion. By DAVID

HARTLEY, M. A. Lond. 1749. p. I.

. This Tract is prisited from the second volume of Doctor Hartlegos Observations on Man ; it is written, as all the other parts of that work are, with fingular closeness of thought ; and to be well in.' derstood, must be read with great attention. Grotius ; Abbadie ; Fabricius ; Limborch; Jacqueloi ; Houtteville ; Pascal ; Stillingfleet ; Stackhouse ; Benson ; Clarke; Leland ; Lardner; Macknight ; Chand. ler; Jenkins ;. Stebbing ; fortin ; Fosterį Nichols, and a great many Other authors; have taken laudable pains in proving the truth of the. Christian religion ; but I know not any author, Grotius excepted, who has, in fo short a compass, said more to the purpole on that subject than Doctor Hartley has done in the tract which is here republished.

Of the Truth of the Christian Religion.' By Joseph

ADDISON, Esq. p. 76.

This posthumous Treatise of Mr: Addison has beeři much ef. teemed both at home and abroad : the general argument contained in it has been carried to a greater length by other authors since his time; especially by Mr. Correvon of Geneva ; by Professor Bullet of Besançon ; and by Dr. Lardner; wlio has treated it in all its parts with great accuracy in his Collection of Jewish and Heatheri Tefti. monies to the Truth of the Christian Religioii. There is, unfortunately; in many menj a strange prepoffeffion against every thing written by churchmen, in defence of the Christian religion ; that “ Priests of all religions are the fame”--that " they defend altars on which their lives depend,” with an hundred other expresa fions of a similar tendency; are frequent in the mouths of unbelievers : we fincerely forgive them this wrong ; but as the charge of felfishness and hypocrisy cannot, with any shadow 'of propriety, be brought against Mr. Addison, and fuch other laymen as have written in support of Christianity, we intreat them to give a sober attention to what these unprejudiced writers have advanced on the subject : furely: eternal life is too important a concern to be jefted away in sarcastic witticism, and frothy disputation, Vol. V.

A 2

Of the Argument for the Truth of Christianity arising from

the fulfilment of our Saviour's predi&tions concerning the destruction of the Temple, and the City of Jerusalem, and the dispersion of the fews. Being the third chapter of the first vol, of a Collection of Jewish and Heathen Tesiimonies to the Truth of the Christian Religion. By N. LARDNER, D. D. 1764. p. 103.

The argument for the truth of Christianity which is taken from the history of the destruction of Jerusalem as related by Josephus, compared with our Saviour's predition of that event recorded by the Evangelifts Matthew, Mark, and Luke, has always been considered as one of the strongest which can be urged, either against the Jews in particular, or against unbelievers in general. In modern times this argument has been illustrated by Jackson in the first volume of his works, 1673 ; by. Tillotson in the 12th vol. (8vo ed.) of his Ser. 'mons; by Kidder in his Demonstration of the Meffiah; by Whitby in his Commentary on St. Matthew, and in his General 'Preface; by Sharpe in a discourse intituled, The Rise and Fall of the Holy City and Temple of Jerusalein, preached at the Temple Church, 1764; and, to mention no others, by Jortin in the first. vol. of his Remarks on Ecclefiaftical History. This author has also well proved, not only that the Gospelş, in which the predictions of Christ relative to the destruction of Jerusalem are delivered, were written before that event; but that the predictions themselves could not have been inserted into the Gospels, as interpolations, after the event : the reader will not esteem this to have been an unnecessary labour, who recollects the confidence with which Voltaire, with a view probably of evading the force of the argument in queftion, declares that the Gospels were written after Jerusalem was destroyed— fans doute après la destruction de Jerusalem.--Many an unbeliever is apt to think and say, that he would have faith in the Gospel, if he could see a man raised from the dead, or any one notable iniracle performed in attestation of its truth. Now the completion of an ancient prophecy is, to us who see the completion, a miracle ; and I would sincerely recommend it to every one, who is not steadfast in the faith, to examine carefully, and liberally, whether the prophecies-- concerning Jerusalem being trodden under foot of the Gentiles---concerning the sterility of Palestine-the state of the Jewish people—the introduction of the Gentiles into the Church of God the apostasy of the latter times--the independency

of the Arabs— the servitude of Ham's posterity, &c. have not been · literally fulfilled. These things are fačts which fail within our own

observation; and if we search the Scriptures, we shall find that there facts were predicted long before either we or our fathers were born.

is noitacle ; and an ancienformed in man raisedat he wouldaler

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The present constitution of the world, with respect to the civiliza.
rion, the religion, the liberty, or savery of the different empires
which sublift in it, is but one stage of the completion of the va.
rious prophecies, which were of old delivered, concerning the for-
Tuous propositi on were of
tunes of individuals, nations, and countries. We in our days inay

orixe Wine
say what Tertullian, speaking of the accomplishinent of Scripture
prophecy, said in his--Quicquid agitur prænunciabatur, quicquid vi.
detur audiebatur. The reader may find these subjects discussed by
Bp. Newton in his Differtations on the Prophecies ; by Whiffon in
his Accomplishment of Scripture Prophecy ; by Sharpe in his second
Argument in defence of Christianity ; by Lardner in his three Ser,
mons on the Circumftances of the Jewish People, an Argument for the
Truth of Chriftianity ; by the author of the Principes de la Foi Chré-
tienne ; by the author of an Essay in the Universal History, on The
Independency of the Arabs ; by Bishops. Hurd, Hallifax, and Bagot,
in their Sermons preached at Warburton's Lecture ; by Joseph Mede,
and Henry Mire, in their relpective works ; and by Worthington in
bis Sesmon preached at Boyle's Lecture, 1766, &c.

All the 48tions recorded in the Gospels are probable,

P: 177

This Tract is the 4th chap. of the ift book of the Truth of the
Gospel History, by Mackoight. Young men should render this shore
tract familiar to them by a frequent perusal of it ; they will find in iç
very concise, but satisfactory answers to many objections respecta
ing fome parts of our Saviour's conduct, the possibility and the
credibility of miracles, &c. which are, sometimes seriously, oftener
in wanton mockery of religion, made subjects of common conver-
sation, and which never fail to leave a bad impression on the minds
of thole who know not how to reply to them.

of the Argument for the Truth of the Christian Religion

arising from the converfion of the world to Christianity ;
taken from the Truth of the Gospel History. By James
MACKNIGHT, D. D, 1763. p. 199.

That great multitudes out of every nation in the then known
world were converted from Heathenism to Christianity, within a
few years after the death of Jesus, is a fact allowed on all hands;
the question is, whether this fact can be properly urged as a decisive
proof of the divine origin of the Christian religion. And, with
but doubt, the fact, abstractedly considered, cannot. The exten.
Hvę propagation of a religion, how rapidly soever it may have been

made,

Of the Argument for the Truth of Christianity arising from

the fulfilment of our Saviour's predi&tions concerning the destruction of the Temple, and the City of Jerusalem, and the dispersion of the fews. Being the third chapter of the first vol. of a Collection of Jewish and Heathen Testimonies to the Truth of the Christian Religion. By N. LARDNER, D. D. 1764. p. 103.

The argument for the truth of Christianity which is taken from the history of the destruction of Jerusalem as related by Josephus, compared with our Saviour's prediction of that event recorded by the Evangelists Matthew, Mark, and Luke, has always been considered as one of the strongest which can be urged, either against the Jews in particular, or against unbelievers in general. In modern times this argument has been illustrated by Jackson in the first volume of his works, 1673; by. Tillotson in the j2th vol. (8vo ed.) of his Ser. mons; by Kidder in his Demonstration of the Meiliah ; by Whitby in his Commentary on St. Matthew, and in his General Preface ; by Sharpe in a discourse intituled, The Rise and Fall of the Holy City and Temple of Jerusalein, preached at the Temple Church, 1764; and, to mention no others, by Fortin in the first. vol. of his Remarks on Ecclefiaftical History. This author has also well proved, not only that the Gospels, in which the predictions of Christ relative to the destruction of Jerusalem are delivered, were written before that event; but that the predictions themselves could not have been inserted into the Gospels, as interpolations, after the event : the reader will not esteem this to have been an unnecessary labour, who recollects the confidence with which Voltaire, with a view probably of evading the force of the argument in queftion, declares that the Gospels were written after Jerusalem was destroyed-fans doute après la destruction de Jerufalem.- Many an unbeliever is apt to think and say, that he would have faith in the Gospel, if he could see a man raised from the dead, or any one notable iniracle performed in attestation of its truth. Now the completion of an ancient prophecy is, to us

the car'n n. a miracle ; and I would fincerely recom" is not steadfast in the faith, to ex whether the prophecies-conins foot of the Gentiles---conce of the Jewish peoplema!

o che Church of God-the ai

pendency of the Arabs the serve

• not beer · literally fulfilled. T T

niniour ov observation; and if

ind that it facts were predicted'

are born.

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