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can form no true judgment, nor argue with any certainty concerning them : but they deny the immortality of human souls ; al. leging that men perish at death, and that the present life is the whole of human existence.-4. Those who believe the existence, perfections, and providence of God, the obligations of natural religion, and a state of future retribution, on the evidence of the light of Nature, without a divine revelation; such as these, he says, are the only true deists : but their principles, he apprehends, should lead them to embrace Christianity ; and Therefore he concludes that there is now no consistent scheme of deism in the world. The first deistical writer of any note that appeared in Great Britain was Herbert, baron of Cherbury. He lived and wrote in the seventeenth century. His book De Veritate was first published at Paris in 1624. This, together with his book De Causis Errorum, and his treatise De Religione Laici, were afterwards published in London. His celebrated work De Religione Gentilium, was published at Amsterdam in 1663 in 4to., and in 1700 in 8vo. : and an English translation of it was published at London in 1705. As he was one of the first that formed deism into a system, and asserted the sufficiency, universality, and absolute perfection of natural religion, with a view to discard all extraordinary revelation as useless and needless, we shall subjoin the five fundamental articles of this universal religion. They are these : 1. There is one supreme God.-2. That he is chiefly to be worshipped.-3. That piety and virtue are the principal part of his worship.-4. That we must repent of our sins; and if we do so, God will pardon them.-5. That there are rewards for good men and punishments for bad men, both here and hereafter. A number of advocates have appeared in the same cause ; and however they may have differed ainong themselves, they have been agreed in their attempts of invalidating the evidence and authority of divine revelation. We might mention Hobbes, Blount, Toland, Collins, Woolston. Tindal, Morgan, Chubb, lord Bolingbroke, Hume, Gibbon, Paine, and some add lord Shaftsbury to the nuinber. Among foreigners, Voltair, Rosseau, Condorcet, and many other celebrated French authors, have rendered them: selves conspicuous by their deistical writings,
OF JUDAISM, OR THE RELIGION OF THE JEWS.
The term Jews is the appropriate denomination of the descendants of Judah, which soon incladed under it the Benjamites, who joined themselves to the tribe of Judah, on the revolt of the other ten tribes from the house of David. After the Babylonish captivity, when many individuals of these ten tribes returned with the men of Judah and Benjamin to rebuild Jerusalem, the term Jews included them also, or rather was then extended to all the descendants of Israel who retained the Jewish religion, whether they belonged to the two or to the ten tribes : whether they returned into Judea or not. Hence, not only all the Israelites of succeeding times have been called Jews, but all the descendants of Jacob are frequently so called by us at present, and we speak even of their original dispensation as the Jewish dispensation.
The expectation of the promised Messiah is the leading tenet of the religion of the modern Jews ; and in this they differ widely from Christians, who believe that the Messiah has already come, and that in Christ Jesus all the Jewish prophecies respecting him were accomplished. Infatuated with the idea of a temporal Messiah and deliverer, who is to subdue the world, and reinstate them in their own land, the Jews still wait for his appearance ; but they have not fixed either the place whence, or the time when, he is to come. Finding it difficult to evade the force of certain texts in Isaiah, &c, which speak of a suffering Messiah, some have had recourse to the idea of two Messiahs, who are to succeed each other ; Ben Joseph, of the tribe of Ephraim, in a state of humiliation and suffering ; and Ben David, of the tribe of Judab, in a state of glory, magnificence, and power. As to the character and mission of their Messiah, he is to be of the tribe of Judah, the lineal descendant of David, and called by bis name, and to be endued with the spirit of prophecy ; and his especial inission is, to restore the dispersed sheep of Israel, plant them safely in their own land, subdue their enemies, and by that means bring the whole world to the knowledge of the one true God. The Jews say, that his coming and their restoration have not yet taken place, because they are still unworthy to be redeemed,
and have not repented, or have not yet received the full meas. ure of their punishment. Yet, they insist that their redemption is not conditional, but will take place at the appointed time, though they should not repent ; that God will not redeem aná restore them for any merit of their own, but for his name's sake. for the sake of the few righteous, and also in consideration of what they will be after their redemption, when they will all be good and righteous. They believe that Judea will be the seat of those wars which will precede their redemption ; and that, after due vengeance taken on the nations for the cruelties exer: cised on the people of God, during this long and deplorable captivity, they will terminate in the complete subjection of all nations to the power of the Messiah, and in the introduction of aniversal peace and happiness that shall never more be interTupted. Though they profess to know nothing of the abode, or present state, of the ten tribes, yet they believe that they are lost only in name, and shall be restored together with Judah and Benjamin : that all those Jews who have embraced Christianity or Mahometanism, shall then return to the religion of their fathers; and that their nation, thus restored and united, shall never again go into captivity, nor ever be in subjection to any power ; but that all the nations of the world shall thenceforward be subject to them. Judea will then again become fruitful; Jerusalem“ will be built on its ancient ground-plot ;" and the real descendants of the priests and Levites will be rein. stated in their respective offices, though they may have been forced to apostatize. Then also will be restored the spirit of prophecy, the ark and cherubim, fire from heaven, &c., as formerly, in the tabernacle, in the wilderness, and in Solomon's temple. In fine, then will idolatry wholly cease in the earth, and all men will acknowledge the unity of God, and his kingdom, (Zech. xiv. 9.) Such are the expectations of the modern Jews, with respect to the Messiah and his kingdom, which they still avow to be not of a spiritual, but of a temporal nature.
The Jews are scattered over the face of the whole earth, wherever at least there can be found the least traffic of a profite able nature, connected with what are called civilized nations.
The early bistory of the Jews is to be found in the books of the Old Testament ; and the Pentateuch particularly should be consulted for a complete system of Judaism.
The religious tenets of the modern Jews are to be found in the celebrated confession of faith drawn up by Maimonides at the close of the twelfth century. It is as follows:
1. I believe with a true and perfect faith, that God is the Creator (whose name be blessed,) governor, and maker of all creatures ; and that he hath wrought all things, worketh, and shall work, forever.-2. I believe, with perfect faith, that the Creator (whose name be blessed) is one ; and that such an unity as is in him can be found in none other and that be alone hath been our God, is, and for ever shall be.-3. I believe, with a
perfect faith, that the Creator (whose name be blessed) is not corporeal, not to be comprehended with any bodily properties; and that there is no bodily essence that can be likened unto him.-4. I believe, with a perfect faith, the Creator (whose name be blessed) to be the first and the last, that nothing was before him, and that he shall abide the last for ever.-5. I be. lieve, with a perfect faith, that the Creator (whose name be blessed) is to be worshipped, and none else.-6. I believe, with a perfect faith, that all the words of the prophets are true. 7. I believe, with a perfect faith, that the propbecies of Moses our master, (may he rest in peace !) were true; that he was the father and chief of all wise men that lived before him, or ever shall live after him.-8. I believe with a perfect faith, that all the law, which at this day is found in our hands, was delivered by God himself to our master Moses, (God's peace be with him.)-9. I believe, with a perfect faith, that the same law is never to be changed, nor any other to be given us of God (whose name be blessed.)-10, I believe, &c. that God (whose game be blessed) understandeth all the works and thoughts of men, as it is written in the prophets ; he fashioneth their hearts alike, he understandeth all their works.-11. I believe, &c. that God will recompense good to them that keep his commandments, and will punish them who transgress them.-12. I believe, &c. that the Messiah is yet to come ; and although he retard his coming, yet I will wait for him till he come.-13. I believe, &c. that the dead shall be restored to life, when it shall seem fit unto God, the Creator (whose name be blessed, and memory celebrated world without end. Amen.)
But the great and distinguishing doctrine of the Jews, like that of Mahometans, is that there is but one God.
Many intelligent Jews disclaim any notion of a trinity of persons in the Godhead ; and some of them have asserted that this doctrine is the greatest bar to the conversion of the Jews to the Christian faith. The chief, however, of the conversions that have as yet taken place amongst the Jews, have been to the trinitarianism of Christians.
Although the modern rabbis denounce the most dreadful anathemas against all who presume to calculate the time of the Messiah's appearance, the expectation of this great event is a leading tenet of their faith. Numbers of them are still buoyant with expectations of a temporal monarch, wbo shall lead them in triumph to their native land, as they deem Palestine to be.
The Jews believe that two great ends are to be effected by the resurrection, the one particular, and the other general.
“ The first great end, wbich I call a particular one, as it is for the Jewish nation only, is to effect, that those who have been persecuted and slain, during this long and dreadful cap. tivity, for adhering to the true faith, may enjoy the salvation of the Lord, according to wbat the prophet says, (Isaiah xxvi. 19, and Ixvi. 10.) The second great end, which I call a general one, because it affects all mankind, whether Jews, Gen
tiles, or Christians, is to bring all nations to the knowledge of the true God, and to effect, that the firm belief of his unity may be so unalterably fixed in their hearts, as that they may attain the end for which they were created, to honour and glorify God, as the prophet observes, Isaiah xliii. 7.”.
· Sereral other doctrines are maintained by the Jews, which are not contained in the thirteen articles already given. The rabbis aeknowledged, that there is in man a fund of corruption ; and the Talmud speaks of original sin thus ; “We ought not to be surprised that the sin of Adam and Eve was so deeply engraven, and that it was sealed as it were with the king's signet, that it might be thereby transmitted to all their posterity ; it was because all things were finished the day that Adam was created, and he was the perfection and consummation of the world, so that when he sinned, all the world sinned with him. We partake of his sin, and share in the punishment of it, but not in the sins of his descendants."
The rabbis teach, that the evils in which men were involved by sin will be removed by the Messiah. They do not, however, entertain the idea that this illustrious personage will make an atoneinent for sin ; this they suppose is done by the fulfilling of the law and circumcision. They pray God to remember unto them the merits of their ancestors, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Moses.
The Jews maintain, that the souls of the righteous enjoy the beatific visiotr of God in Paradise, and that the souls of the wicked are torinented in hell with fire and other punishments, They suppose, that the sufferings of the most attrocious criminals are of eternal duration, while others remain only for a lim. ited time in purgatory, which does not differ from hell with respect to the place, but to the duration. They pray for the souls of the dead, and imagine that many are delivered from purgatory on the great day of expiation.
They suppose that no Jew, unless guilty of heresy, or certain crimes specified by the rabbis, shall continue in purgatory above a year ; and that there are but few who suffer eternal punishment. Maimonides, Abarbanel, and other celebrated Jewish writers, maintain the annihilation of the wicked. Others suppose, that the sufferings of hell have the power of purifying souls and expiating sin.
It appears from authentic accounts, that many Jews at the present day have imbibed the principles of infidelity, and mo longer receive the writings of the Old Testament as divinely inspired, or expect the coming of the Messiah.
The accusation of infidelity is confirmed by a distinguished Jewish writer, David Levi, who complains, that there are two different parties in the nation who slight the prophecies which speak of their future restoration, and ridicule the idea of a Messiah coming to redeem them. The one consists of such as call themselves philosophers, enlightened men, who, says he, "s are perfect deists, not believing a syllable of revelation, and