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sudden, there was a forcible concussion of the earth and air, preceding, or accompanying the presence of the angel, who descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door of the sepulcbre. After which also, so far as we know, the air was calm and serene. For the women, and some of the disciples, came early out of the city to the sepulchre, without any difficulties arising from bad weather, so far as we can observe.
The several suppositions above mentioned, appear to me to be made by you altogether without any ground or foundation from the evangelists; and therefore they are unjustifiable, and must be of bad consequence. What history can stand before such treatment? It must be perverted. It will be altered, and made somewhat very different from what it really is. Heedless and inattentive readers (of wbich there are too many) are amused and entertained, and not carefully consulting the original, they admit such suppositions as parts of the history, though they are not mentioned nor implied in it.
IV. I now proceed to my fourth inquiry, which relates to . the preparing the spices by the women from Galilee to 6 anoint the body of Jesus.
The accounts which we have of this are in two evangelists only. St. Mark having at the end of ch. xv. said : “ And Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of Joses, beheld where he was laid,” begins the xvi. chapter in this manner : “ And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought [or brought] sweet spices, that they might come and anoint him.” St. Luke xxiii. 55, 56, xxiv, 1, “ And the women also, which came with him from Galilee, followed after, and beheld the sepulchre, and how the body was laid. And they returned, and prepared spices and ointments, and rested the sabbath-day, according to the commandment. Now upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them.”
I understand that narrative in this manner. When the crucifixion was over, and the women bere spoken of had seen our Lord laid in the sepulchre, they returned to Jerusalem, to their apartment there, and rested on the sabbathday, which was now coming on, if not already begun. And when the sabbath was over, in the evening they bought sweet spices, and early in the morning, on the first day of the week, they went to the sepulchre, carrying the spices
with them, in order to anoint the body, according to their intention.
Your way of reconciling these two accounts is this. P. 617, · This is not inconsistent with Mark xvi. 1, where we • are told, that they bought spices after the sabbath was • ended. It seems, the quantity, which according to Luke • had been provided and prepared on the night of the cruci• fixion, was too small : or the sabbath coming on, they had
not time to procure all the ingredients that were necessary. • For which reason they went the first day of the week, and • bought more.'
I rather think, that all the spices which they wanted were bought at once, and in the evening, after the sabbath was ended, as St. Mark says. Nor need St. Luke to be otherwise understood. You can help us out here. For you say, Prelim. Obser. iii. p. 14, · Matthew and Luke giving the • history of our Lord's public entry into Jerusalem, connect • the purging the temple therewith, as if both happened in
one day. Nevertheless, from the more particular account • which Mark gives of these affairs, it appears, that on the • day of his public entry, Jesus did not go into the temple • till the evening, when the market, usually kept in the • court of the Gentiles, which he intended to prohibit, was • over, and that he did not reform this abuse till the next day.'
So it is here. Nor is St. Luke to be understood to say, that they prepared any spices that day. He is to be understood in this manner. And they returned, and prepared * spices and ointments. Nevertheless they rested 'the sab• bath-day, according to the commandment. And deferred • preparing them till that was over.'
In your Chronological Dissertations, p. 88, you say: • Luke also insinuates, that Jesus was crucified on the pre
paration of the passover. For he tells us, ch. xxiii. 56, " that when the women had viewed our Lord's sepulchre, • and how bis body was laid, “ they returned, and rested ac• cording to the commandment.” It seems the sabbath began • about the time they were at the sepulchre.'
Which indeed I take to be the truth of the case. By the time the funeral rites were finished, and whilst they were yet at the sepulchre, the day closed, the sun set, and the sabbath came on. After which the women, and the other company there present, might without any scruple of their own, and without offence to others, walk thence to their apartments, or their babitations, at Jerusalem. But after
that, no work could be done until after the sabbath was over.
Nor do I see how it could be otherwise. For our Lord did not expire, as all allow, till the “ ninth hour of the day," or our three afternoon. And says St. Matt. xxvij. 57, 58, “when the even was come,” that is, three afternoon, “there came a rich man of Arimathea, named Joseph, who also bimself was Jesus' disciple. He went to Pilate and begged the body of Jesus; then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.” Compare Mark xv. 4245, and Luke xxiij. 5053, and John xix. 38. But we are told by St. Mark, in the place just referred to, that when Joseph presented that request, “ Pilaté marvelled if he were already dead; and calling for the centurion, he asked him whether he had been any while dead. And when he knew it, he gave the body to Josepb.” That would take up some time. For the centurion, undoubtedly, was at the place of execution, attending the bodies. Nor could he remove from that place without special order from - the governor himself. Whether by “ calling for the centurion," be intended, that Pilate commanded him to come to him, that he might himself speak to him; or whether thereby be only meant, that Pilate sent a messenger to the centurion, and received an answer from him by that messenger, I do not determine; either way some time was required to give Pilate satisfaction upon this head.
Nevertheless, I will suppose that much time was not lost by that means; for Joseph and Nicodemus might take it for granted that the body, would not be refused, but would be delivered to them at their request; and e immediately after the Lord Jesus bad expired, they might begin to make preparations for bis burial. However, the performing the funeral rites, as related by St. Jobn, might fully occupy the space of time that followed, till sun-setting. Nor is it conceivable that the women could get back to Jerusalem before the sabbath was begun, or very near beginning, at the soonest, that is, the time of sun-setting, or our six afternoon.
At p. 620, you speak of the women pounding and mixing the spices. Accordingly, having bought the spices, they
judged it proper to send two of their number to see if • Jesus was still in the sepulchre that when the spices • were prepared, that is, pounded, mixed, and melted into an • ointment, they might go directly to the place and embalm • him.'
Apparemment que Joseph fit ses appareils, et assembla les gens dont il avoit besoin pour la sépulture de Jésus Christ, dès qu'il le vit crucifié. Le Clerc sur Marc xv. 42.
I cannot believe that there was any occasion for this. These women were not inhabitants of Jerusalem, but had come up thitber with our Lord as attendants upon him at the time of the passover. I see not how they should be furnished with pestles and mortars, and other vessels for pounding, mixing, and melting spices. I rather think they bought spices already mixed into an ointment, prepared and fitted for the use intended by them. In countries where einbalming was in use, and where they buried soon after men bad expired, and especially in great cities, and near them, such as Jerusalem, there must have been shops, or warehouses of apothecaries, or embalmers, or confectioners, where spices of all sorts, proper for funeral rites, and also bandages and rollers might be had, and upon the shortest notice, for all sorts of persons, according to their several circumstances. We have an instance of this in the burial of our Saviour. His crucifixion and death were onlooked for by his friends. Nevertheless, as soon as he bad expired, Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus came to the place, “ bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight. And they took the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes, (or bandages,] with spices, as the manner of the Jews is to bury”- eoncav avto o oviois.
And that the Jews of that time buried soon after decease, we see in the instances of Ananias and Sappbira, Acts v. 1
-10. It also appears in the history of Lazarus. John xi. 39, “ Jesus said, Take away the stone. Martha, the sister of him who was dead, saith unto him; Lord, by this time he smelleth ; for he has been dead four days." Tetaptatos yap cott. You, Sir, are pleased to say in your Harmony, sect. c. p. 418: · When Jesus and his disciples were come • nigh to Bethany, they heard from some of the inhabitants
that Lazarus was four days buried. Wherefore, as a day • or two must bave been spent in making preparations for * the burial, he could not well be less than five days dead • when Jesus arrived.'
Your computation is wrong. Lazarus was buried on the day in which he died. John xi. 19, “ Then, when Jesus came, he found that he bad lain in the grave four days already." But those days are not to be reckoned complete. It was the fourth day since he was buried, on which also he had died. You know very well how the sacred writers compute days. Matt. xii, 4, “ For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; .so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth." You do not thereby understand three com
plete days and nights. If Lazarus had been dead more than four days Martha would have said so. For corruption of bodies dues not commence merely froin the time of burial, but from the time of death. And, says Cyril of Alexandria, • Jesus brought Lazarus out of the grave, now dead, ' and stinking, on the fourth day after his death.' So says Cyril, wbo, as I think, must have understood Greek as well as any modern critics. This is the same computation of the time of Lazarus's death, which was made long ago in a tract? which you just now quoted with approbation.
These good women of Galilee, then, as I suppose, bought the spices they wanted, ready prepared, and mixed into an ointment, in the evening, after the sabbath was over. And, when they had so done, as I apprehend, they went to rest, trusting in God, as other good men and women do, that they might be composed, and the better fitted for the intended service of the ensuing day. This is to be understood so far as was consistent with the greatness of their concern for what bad lately happened to their inuch respected Lord and Master.
What these women designed, we cannot say exactly. But I dare say, it was not what you suppose, p. 617, • That they • might embalm their dead Lord by anointing and swathing • him in a proper manner.' For I think, he was properly swathed, or rolled, before. And any alteration of the rollers, or bandages, would have been inconsistent with that respect, wbich was due to the body of Jesus. What they aimed at, I say, I do not know. But possibly they intended to rub ointment on the outside of the bandages, to fill up the spaces, or interstices, which there might be, and to add to the fragrancy of the spices, which had been already made use of.
After all, I do not think it was any great matter, which was intended by them. And to me it seems, that you speak too slightly of what had been done by Joseph of Arimathea, and Nicodemus. Your words at p. 617 are these : « The • Galilean women, who had waited on Jesus in his last • moments, and accompanied him to the sepulcbre, ob
serving that his funeral rites were performed in a hurry, * (the body being rolled in nothing but a mixture of myrrh • and aloes, which Nicodemus brought,) agreed among them
selves to come when the sabbath was passed, and embalm • their dead Lord, by anointing and swathing him in a pro
* Τον δυσωδη νεκρον, μετα τεταρτης της τελευτης ημεραν, εκ θηκης εζηγαγεν. Cyril. in Jo. xi. 44. T. IV. p. 689. 8 See Vindication of Three of our Saviour's Miracles, against Woolston, p. 24, note.