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but as a very
of what has been done, may naturally be expected. And here let me say very candidly, that the task of chronological research, strictly so called, I have regarded not as lying out of my way,
fit subject for separate inquiry. I have set myself, therefore, to investigate and determine the series and succession of the principal events in the line of apostolical history, without making any attempt to calculate exactly the period of time betwixt every one great point in that line and every other. It may not be always true, but in this department of sacred narrative it can hardly, I think, be denied, that the succession of events, if once ascertained, may throw light on the calculation of in. tervals ; while no intervals, that I can see, are yet by general agreement so certainly defined, as to afford a safe clue for adjusting the succession where that is otherwise matter of dispute.
For the present I have adopted, if not as absolutely correct, yet as not very far from the truth, the dates of Bishop Tomline given in his Introduction to the Study of the Bible, part ii. ch.7., Of St. Paul. At all events, in general agreement with Dr. Paley, his calculations are formed on that relative order of the epistles, which it is one purpose of this work more clearly to establish : and from the adoption of those dates, with that understanding, no important error is ever likely to ensue.
For geographical assistance in reading the Continuous History, something in the way of an appropriate sketch has been attempted. In my judgment, for practically illustrating the travels of St. Paul, the simplest plan will be the best also. Suppose the leading aspect of different countries from good maps to be already known, which for the most part may safely enough be assumed; and then let the map here given for that especial purpose, exhibit all the places on record
as actually traversed, so much and no more. The student will have the lands and seas in outline before him ; and as he reads of each separate journey or voyage, he can surely trace for himself the course of the narrative, just as the apostle passes along from one distinct scene of action or suffering to another. A plan like this, if fairly pursued, will hardly fail to answer its end.
To the Notes critical and grammatical a few words may next be allotted. In some passages, more or less important, where our Version was not constructed on the true text, as being at that era not known or not duly appreciated, I have readily availed myself, but only where the subject demanded it, of the Lectio indubie genuina of the text of Griesbach, to secure the just and satisfactory interpretation. And if on some other texts with less urgent reason for it I have once or twice delivered a remark of illustration, the lovers of correct learning will hardly condemn a liberty taken within such modest bounds.
On all occasions, whether adverted to in the Nores or not, wherever I have in any way freely deviated from our Version, the better to bring out the meaning of the original, to qualify or develope it ; the attentive reader with his New Testament open for reference will be at no loss to discern what is so intended, and to accept it accordingly.
The Index of places and persons, &c. will be found particularly useful as presenting in the order of time a brief sketch of each subject, according to the relation which it bore to the principal agent. That Index will be not less efficient also, to show how the subordinate parts harmonize with the whole and with each other ; as well as to demonstrate that collective consequence both of persons and places, which might be undervalued, if not lost, when occurring in points of distant detail. Troas alone may well suffice to exemplify the latter remark.
The CONTINUOUS HISTORY is here divided into Parts. Some account may be expected of that division. My first idea was that now exhibited in the body of the work, in Part I. to place whatever is known of St. Paul
prior to his first apostolic progress, to p. 10.; in Part II. the three apostolic progresses from An
tioch, including the private journey and the public mission to Jerusalem between the first and second of those progresses, and the third progress terminating, at p. 81., in the great Jewish Persecution which closes with his deliverance from the
first imprisonment at Rome, p. 117. ; in Part III. the fourth and last apostolic progress,
from Rome, p. 124. ; in Part IV. his return to Rome, and his martyrdom
there, p. 132. In point of facility, however, for comprehension and memory, I have since thought that method of classifying the principal events, given in the five Chronological Tables here subjoined, to have the decisive advantage ; especially as the three early progresses, those from Antioch, are concluded each in its own Table, i. ii. iii., while Table iv., devoted to the long persecution which began at Jerusalem, preludes to Table v. of the last Progress, that from Rome to Rome again, which leads at once to the Apostle's martyrdom.
Very fortunately by either method the large groupings of historic matter are presented according to their real importance ; so that no inconvenience is likely to arise, whichever of the two divisions be at the time preferred and followed. But for permanent use that of the Tables will justly have the preference : it is recommended for adoption accordingly.
And here, before concluding, the pleasing office remains, to acknowledge some particular obligations contracted in the course of this work, which has in fact been long and laborious.
Dr, Hastings Robinson, well known as a scholar and a divine, deserves my best thanks for the benefit derived from the use of his library, and the reference, at times, to his judgment, during my residence in that part of Essex ; where the convenience of immediate neighbourhood favoured the enjoyment of friendship with such persons as Dr. H. R., the Rector of Great Warley, and our common friend, Mr. Yorke, the Rector of Shenfield.
To my son, Mr. Thomas Tate, now in the cure of Edmonton, as heretofore in that of Hutton, my valu. able coadjutor, I testify, with much pleasure, that I have been greatly indebted : very much so for his aid at a critical period of my labours, in the happy extrication out of certain difficulties, occasioned by that brevity, bordering on the obscure, with which the movements of the Apostle are sometimes narrated in the Acts.
For frequent readiness to assist me by his accurate and extensive acquaintance with ecclesiastical antiquity, let my estimable young friend, Mr. R. C. Jenkins, of Trinity College, Cambridge, be thus duly thanked. His Short Defence of the Eucharistical Doctrine of the Church of England has been already well received ; and may justify the expectation in time of maturer 'fruits from learning and talent like his so united.
Amen Corner, St. Paul's,
Oct. 21. 1840.
34. SAUL before his conversion
] 35. ... the conversion of Saul.
3 Saul afterwards at Damascus: his journey into Arabia, and return.
5 38. Escapes from Damascus. Saul at Jerusalem, thence to Tarsus ..
The Gospel preached out of Palestine
first to Jews, then to Gentile Proselytes
42. Barnabas brings Saul to Antioch for his co
CHRISTIANS first so named in that city. 44. The dearth in Judea : relief carried by B. and S.
From Antioch, the FIRST APOSTOLIC PROGRESS,
of Barnabas and Saul, solemnly commis
first idolatrous Gentile, is converted :
now the metropolis of Gentile Christianity.