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have we any reason to suppose his acquaintance with the country to have been more intimate than that we can gather of it from the book of Acts. This consideration adds force to some of the instances which we shall bring forward.
In viii. 22–25, Luke describes a storm upon Gennesaret: it is also described by Matthew and Mark. From the accounts of the two latter we could form no idea of the nature of the locality where this storm happened; but one little word in Luke places it before us with a painter's force: “There came down a storm of wind upon the lake.” Gennesaret is surrounded with mountains, and in Luke's descent of the storm we have this feature accurately marked. In the description of our Lord's journey to Jerusalem from Jericho we have this same accuracy. A foreigner writing of this from a distance would speak of Christ as going from one place to the other. A native would ever, as it is done throughout the Old Testament, speak of his going up from the one to the other. This is in the phrase which Luke uses : “When he had thus spoken, he went before, ascending up to Jerusalem.” He writes as accurately as if the ascent from the low country of Jordan to the hill country of Jerusalem had been his own yearly custom.
In xxi. 1, we read of a gesture on Christ's part which we might perhaps feel disposed to pass over as unimportant: “He looked up, and saw the rich men casting their gifts in the trea
But when we consider it, we come to ask where was he that he should require to look up in order to see what was going
Luke puts him in the very place where this is going on, speaking to those who were present, nor does he give us the smallest hint that he was in any place where he should “look up” in order to see. But when we turn to Mark's account we find how it was.
There we are told that after Christ's solemn warning of the disciples against the scribes he sat down (Mark xii. 41). This accounts for Luke's phrase : in order to see he should look up. Luke did not see Mark's gospel : he was not present at the scene: he tells us previously of no act of Christ which would account for the phrase he was about to use. Yet in saying, “He looked up,” he as accurately marks the exact gesture of Jesus as if with the apostles he had seen Jesus seat himself, and from his lowly position raise up his head to see the gifts of the rich men and that of the poor widow which he preferred to theirs. In his use of the word “Amen,” he shews a similar accuracy. It was a Hebrew term, quite unused by foreigners. Luke himself never uses it throughout the book of Acts. Yet in his gospel where he is narrating the words of Jews it is of frequent occurrence (iv. 24 ; xxiii. 43). The accu
NEW SERIES. - VOL. I., NO. II.
rate foreigner gives us the very word used by his speakers, which he never introduces into his own vocabulary.
These are in themselves little things, but the more unimportant they are in themselves, the more do they bring forward the extreme accuracy with which Luke's gospel has been drawn up. We should expect accuracy in great things, nor would it surprise us there. But when we find it in the most trivial matters, and these too, matters with which the writer had little or no personal acquaintance, --in the descent of the storm upon the hill lake,-in the ascent of the traveller from Jericho to Jerusalem,-in the look up of Christ in the temple,—in the use of a phrase which had no place in his own manner of speech, we discern an accuracy which has traced with the same minute fidelity what is small and what is great.
Our gospel professes to be written, and was therefore written, in chronological order (i. 3). Dean Alford, in his note on this verse, tells us that Luke " did not mean hereby to lay claim to any especial chronological accuracy,”_" which indeed is not (he adds) found in his gospel.” But we are scarcely obliged to answer this strange assertion; for here, and elsewhere, Alford seems to overturn his own dictum. In his note on the word kabe&is, he translates it “consecutively” which, according to Johnson, mean “ following in train, uninterrupted, regularly succeeding:” while in his Prolegomena to the gospel he gives us just such an account of it as we should naturally learn from Luke's words. He says, "the evangelist begins with the announcement of the birth of Christ's forerunner, and concludes with the particulars of the ascension: thus embracing the whole great procession of events by which our redemption by Christ was ushered in, accomplished, and sealed in heaven." This is exactly what we think of Luke, and what Luke claims for himself. He claims to write, not a collection of anecdotes thrown together, but a well-digested narrative possessed of full claim to chronological accuracy,--the chronology of history, not of diary. He does not indeed profess to write a diary, nor would such be at all as useful to us as the work he has written. We cannot consequently say that every event related after another is posterior to it in point of time: this is a diary. History often, in order to give us a full and clear view of some subject, brings down its account of it to its completion, and then goes back in time to take up again some other subject left behind in order to present the unbroken view of the other. But we never say of such that it does not, therefore, “lay claim to any especial chronological accuracy. And so we may allow of Luke; he too may prosecute a subject to its close, and then relate what had in point of time happened anterior to part of what he had previously described. This is no disproof of his chronological accuracy. It merely shews us that his gospel is written on the plan of a history instead of on that of a diary. We will give an instance of this in the narrative of Peter's denial. John relates it in strict chronological order. According to its time the three denials were interspersed throughout the trial, and John accordingly passes on from denial to trial, and from trial to denial, exactly as a bystander would witness the whole. Luke adopts a different order (xxii. 55—62), having begun his account of the denial, he completes the account without a break. Now it was not from ignorance on his part, or any idea that it actually took place thus, that he so related it, for he, and he alone, tells us (ver. 59) that about the space of an hour intervened between the second and third denials, during which he must have supposed that the trial was going on. It arose, therefore, from the difference of his plan; he preferred a full account of one event undisturbed by accounts of others, and therefore proceeds with one event to its close, and then takes up others. His chronology was, according to his own shewing, the chronology of history.
Again, we have to remark of Luke, that he evidently did not intend to write a history of all he knew, but only such a history as he judged sufficient for his object. There are some who seem to imagine that the evangelists have sought to make their accounts as full as they could. To us they appear to have been written on a different plan; as much brevity as was consistent with the communication of such an amount of knowledge, as was requisite for the events of the church, seems to have been their aim. If we were to suppose them uninspired men, it is idle to suppose that they could not have brought together materials for books of any size. If they were inspired, then their judgment must have been led to see that accounts such as we have, were more suitable than others of greater length. John plainly tells us that he omitted to relate far the greater part of what he knew, and that his written account in fact contained but an infinitesimal portion of his knowledge (xx. 30; xxi. 5). Luke claims an amount of knowledge which would have enabled him, if he saw fit, to have told us far more than he has done (i. 3). One instance shews us this, he has told us nothing about the death of John Baptist, which both Matthew and Mark have been pretty full upon. Yet he knew perfectly well of his death, for he was aware of and mentions his imprisonment, and in relating the words of Herod he shews that he was also acquainted with his death (iii. 20; ix. 7–9). He could just as easily have made half a chapter about Herodias
and her daughter, and Herod's oath and the decapitation of John, as the other evangelists have done, but he omitted it because he did not think it requisite for his purpose.
He studied brevity as well as arrangement and completeness. And in this point of view, perhaps as much as in any other, the Bible is a marvellous book. The composition of some thirty-six men, embracing the religious history of the world for some thousands of years, and the history of one people for fifteen hundred, taking up at a later date the religious history of the world again, and narrating the rise and early progress of the Christian church, embracing every species of composition,--poetry, and allegory and prose, history and prophecy, moral, devotional, and epistolary writing, -it is all contained within a narrower space than numberless authors have each devoted to their special subject of thought. It is a book which a peasant may become familiar with during the hours spared from a life of toil, while it has aroused more thought, attracted more attention, given rise to more voluminous writings, than all the other subjects of thought and writing put together. Look around the largest libraries, and consider how their contents would shrink if all which has sprung directly or indirectly from the Bible, in attack, and defence, and explanation, and theory, and speculation, and history, and philosophy, were to be withdrawn. And yet the book which has given rise to all this is briefer than many works of individuals which have had their short day of fame, and then been consigned to oblivion.
That Luke wrote his gospel at Philippi, seems the most likely view. From the book of Acts we find Luke in the earlier period of our acquaintance with him apparently closely connected with this city. We find him going there with Paul on their first meeting, left behind by Paul on his departure from it, and then rejoining him after several years of separation; and this at the period when we suppose the gospel to have been written. It was composed for Theophilus, a Roman governor, and Philippi, we may well suppose, was the seat of the chief authority of the empire in that part of its dominions. With him, or near him, Luke seems to have lived when he wrote. But this is a matter of very minor import. The gospel itself, and its true character, is that which concerns us chiefly. We have endeavoured to shew that it asserts for itself an authority equal to any we can ascribe to any portion of the inspired Word, nor do we believe that any part of its contents will shew it to be undeserving of this lofty claim.
SOME CONSIDERATIONS ON THE STATE OF MAN;
TENDING TO A HOLY LIFE.
Translated and abridged from the Spanish of Luis de Granada.
I. Of the knowledge of ourselves. The first thing which thou must try to obtain is, a perfect knowledge of thyself and of thy sins; by which alone canst thou hope to attain perfect penitence and sincere humility, which are the two gates and foundations of a Christian life. Thou oughtest first of all to think of the multitude of thy past sins, specially those thou didst commit when thou hadst less knowledge of Almighty God; for if thou examine thyself well, thou wilt find that thy sins are more in number than the hairs of thy head, and that thou didst live as the heathen do, who know not God. Then thou mayest run briefly over the ten commandments of God, and the seven deadly sins, and thou wilt see that there is not one of them of which thou hast not been guiltyeither in thought, word, or deed. By eating of only one forbidden fruit our first parents sinned; but thou hast sinned many times and oft, in all thy members, and with all thy senses.
Consider, moreover, the divine blessings which have been heaped upon thee during thy past life, and see what use thou hast made of them. And as thou must needs hereafter give an account of them all, it will be well for thee to examine and judge thyself now, in order that thou be not judged of the Lord hereafter. Wherefore, tell me, O Christian soul, how didst thou pass thine infancy, thy childhood, thy youth, thy manhood, thine advancing and, it may be, thy declining years. In short, tell me how didst thou pass thy former life? How hast thou made use of thy bodily senses; and of the talents which Almighty God has given thee in order that thou mightest know him the more perfectly, and serve him the more faithfully? How hast thou employed thine eyes ? but in beholding vanity! thine ears ? but iu hearing falsehoods ! thy tongue? but in evil talking, murmuring, and in the vanities of the world! How hast thou employed thy other senses—thy taste, thy touch, and thy sense of smell? but in unmortified pleasure and sensual gratification ! How hast thou, again, approached unto the blessed sacraments, ordained by Almighty God for thy soul's health ? How hast thou, also, thanked him for his benefits? How hast thou listened to his holy inspirations ? How hast thou employed the health, the strength, the natural talents, the gifts of fortune, the opportunities which God has given thee to enable