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THE FULNESS OF THE GENTILES (Rom. xi. 25).—The plain meaning of the Apostle's words would seem to be, that in the meantime blindness or hardening (R.V.) of heart has befallen the Jewish people, but that after the Gentile nations have been converted to Christianity, the time of Israel's reception into the Church of God will come. Godet understands the passage to teach, that until the completion of the conversion of the Gentiles, only individual Jews, but after that time the nation as a whole (en masse) will be converted to the Christian faith. The Rev. Dr. Townsend, in The Churchman, interprets the phrase, “the fulness of the Gentiles,” to mean, not the full number of nations, but “the full number of those who out of the Gentiles believe God and the testimony He has given concerning His Son.” “The view," he says, “suggested by the text, is, I believe, as
, follows: The certain number foreseen by God as coming in from the Gentile world is now being made up, and may be completed at any time."
“ Viewed in this light,” he goes on to say, "what a new importance is imparted to missionary work! and what intense reality! We are now engaged in operations which in the days of our children or grandchildren may pave the way for our Master's coming. We know not how soon the work shall be accomplished and the exact number of those among the Gentiles brought into the Church. How this should stimulate us to burning enthusiasm in our Master's cause! Perhaps an earnest prayer offered by one who reads these words may bring down a blessing upon some worker in the mission field, and so be the means of bringing in the last one to complete the týpwua; and then, what remains to hinder the coming of our Lord !” We may, however,
' doubt whether this view of matters can find support in the words of St. Paul. The Apostle is speaking of nations : of the Gentile nations, and of the Jewish nation, and not specially of individuals in either of them. The most intelligible meaning of the phrase is evidently " the full number of the nations,” or every nation on earth (cf. Matt. xxiv. 14; Mark xiii. 10). The article to which we refer contains very pronounced millenarian opinions, and, as the passage quoted indicates, is not free from that feverishness which is generally their unwholesome accompaniment.
ELOHIM AND JEHOVAH. By J. M. DENNISTON, M.A. (Morgan & Scott).There can be no doubt that the names Elohim and Jehovah represent different aspects of the Divine nature, viz., as the God of nature, and the God of revelation. And in a few passages in the Book of Genesis it seems possible to discern a reason for the variation between the two names in the subjectmatter of the narrative. Thus Elohim is used in chap. i., in which the work of creation is described, while it is said that Jehovah called Abraham (xii. 1). Mr. J. M. Denniston, in a pamphlet on the employment of the Divine names from Gen. i. to Exod. vi., endeavours to confute the theory which puts down this variation to diversity of authorship, and to point out the principle that guides the writer to use now one and now the other of these names. His explanations why one name and not the other was used in any particular case are often so highly artificial, even when they are intelligible, as to discredit his fundamental position. The sudden changes on the part of the writer, with a profound reason for laying down the one name and for taking up the other, would, one would think, be fatal to his maintaining continuity of thought, not to speak of the disquieting effect likely to be produced upon his readers. A single example is sufficient to expose the futility of the pamphlet. On p. 27 it says, “ The next portion (chap. xx.) is, of course, Elohistic, as referring to Abraham's dealing with the heathen Abimelech.” How is it, then, that the name Jehovah is used in the precisely similar passage in chap. xii. 10-20, where dealings with the heathen Pharaoh are referred to? We can get no answer from the pamphlet to this question, as there is not the faintest allusion in it to the latter passage.
The only plausible explanation of the variations in question is a diversity of authorship.
EBIONITISM IN ST. LUKE.—It has become a kind of commonplace in certain quarters to speak of the Ebionitism traceable in St. Luke's Gospel. The sole passages referred to in proof of the statement are chap. v. 21-25, and the parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus in chap. xvi., in which povertX is supposed to be synonymous with virtue, and wealth with vice. On the strength of this, Renan is bold enough to say of St. Luke that he is “an exalted democrat and Ebionite, that is to say, he is very much opposed to property, and is persuaded that a time of retribution for the poor is at
So far as the parable is concerned, such an inference can scarcely be drawn, as Prof. Milligan points out in an article in The Erpositor. The rich man is not condemned because he is rich, nor the poor man saved because he is poor. It is true that no stress is laid upon the piety of Lazarus; had there, been, the edge of the lesson the parable was intended to convey would have been somewhat turned. It was his poverty and misery that should have moved his rich neighbour to pity. It was as a hapless brother-man, and not as a patient saint, that his was a case calling for relief. Had his piety been made prominent in the parable, we should have been encouraged to draw the somewhat dubious inference that the
who are of shady moral character may be neglected with impunity. That Lazarus was pious is implied in what is said of his fate after death-his being carried by angels into Abraham's bosom. But it cannot be said that we are left in any doubt as to the rich man's moral character. While no gross vices are laid to his charge, his long insensibility to the sorrows of his suffering fellow-man distinctly and emphatically condemns him. In his dialogue with Abraham he virtually admits that he had shut his ears to the teaching of Moses and the prophets, which should have roused him from his life of selfish luxury—that, in other words, it was his sealing his heart and conscience against the voice of God that had brought him to that place of torment. No one therefore can fairly say that in the parable the moral character of the two men is entirely left out of account, or that in it we
are taught that poverty and wealth are respectively the marks of those who enjoy or who forfeit the Divine favour. We need not, therefore, be too hasty in concluding that the Gospel which is considered to be Pauline in its tone is indebted for some of its teaching to an obscure Judaizing sect.
ANTIQUITY OF THE BOOK OF JOSHUA.
By Rev. HENRY HAYMAN, D.D. AMONG the notes of early authorship in Joshua is the nomenclature “ the land of the Hittites (i. 4), with limits more extensive than those of Palestine proper, “from the river Euphrates to the great sea westward." Later “ the Hittite" occurs in the familiar lists of nations, ix. 1, xi. 3, xii. 8; in ix. 1 and xii. 8 it heads the list. All that is known of the Hittites leads us to think that by the Isaian period their frontier and influence was so remote that no writer could then have given them the commanding position which these notices bespeak. We trace them onward through Judges i. 26, where a Bethelite retires to “ the land of the Hittites," probably his kindred. Assuming this to be the next, ie, post-Joshuan period, their border, although driven back, would still be not remote. But by Solomon's time “the kings of the Hittites " are classed with those of Aram (1 Kings x. 29), implying a retrocession, while Hittites are, among other tribal remnants, named as those on whom Solomon levied service, while still retaining their original seats in Israelitish soil (ix. 20, 21). Yet further, in Elisha's time the Syrians in
) their panic suppose that "the kings of the Hittites and of the Egyptians" have been hired against them, probably being their northern and southern neighbours (2 Kings vii. 6). These successive passages confirm one another, and lead up to the subsequent effacement, by the times of Amos and Isaiah, of the Hittite name from the political horizon of Israel.
Another note of early date is the case of the post-nati of the Exodus. The omission of the initial rite under the very eye of Moses, whose own son's circumcision formed a perilous passage in his family history (Exod. iv. 24-26), and their consequent circumcision en masse at “the hill of the foreskins,” but only after Jordan was passed and the land definitely entered, would be inconceivable to any Israelite of a later age (Josh. v. 5-9). Had the narrative represented the elder race of the Egyptian bondage and the desert rebellions as having failed to receive the rite, a critic might have plausibly urged that, as they were ultimately excluded in fact from the heritage of Canaan, the recorded omission was a mere ritualistic reflex of that exclusion. But the very opposite is the case. It is the children, born to covenanted privilege, who pass uncircumcised over Jordan. The statement
sounds too improbable not to be true. Its retention with emphatic prominence ensures it as a fact, and goes far to guarantee the original character of the narrative.
Prof. Wellhausen says' that “ the old original tradition” concerning Joshua “is Ephraimitic," as making the hero of the tribe the chief of the nation. That is, he would reduce him to a hero of the Book of Judges, where each has his tribal and local affinities assigned. But his whole record stands pure
any tribal predilection, as remote from it as that of Moses himself. Had the book of Joshua originated at a period later than the severed monarchy, traces of the rivalry between Ephraim and Judah might be natural features in it (cf. Isa. vii. 2, 6, xi. 13). What we find is Ephraim and Judah in perfect harmony, with their typical heroes in concord of ancient comradeship, Joshua and Caleb, as recorded in the memorable and characteristic scene (Josh. xiv. 6-14). Joshua's words to " the house of Joseph ” sound almost as those of an extern: “ Thou art a great people and hast great power” (xvii. 17). They might have been addressed to Judah. The failure, moreover, of Joseph, as of Judah, to master its heritage in detail is impartially recorded (xv. 63, xvi. 9, 10, xvii. 12), while the only anecdotes of personal prowess and of family affection are those of Caleb and Othniel of the tribe of Judah (xv. 13-19). This is exactly what we should not expect in a book supposed of Ephraimitic origin as late as even the Isaian period. Nay, when we remember the touchy and resentful ambition evinced by Ephraim in the days of Gideon and Jephthah (Judges viii. and xii.), we may feel sure that the solid tribal harmony of the Joshuan record is a genuine feature.
The history of Achan yields the lesser note deducible from the form of the name, not, as in 1 Chron. ii. 7, " Achar the troubler of Israel,” corrupted or distorted to suit the local name played upon in the Joshuan context (vii. 25, 26). The prophet Hoshea (ii. 15) alludes to the story as popularly known; but the omen of the name, which was one of despair, is by him reversed to an avenue of hope.” In that same valley of Achor” (so named, Joshua vii. 24, 26) a trial scene, that of Israel personified as a “mother," is to be re-enacted, but with a sentence of acquittal. Those who deem this a small point will find it reinforced by the phrase, “garment of Shinar,” as part of Achan's spoil. We find in Genesis a “land of Shinar," with its king (Gen. x. 10, xi. 2, xiv. 1). Isaiah (xi. 11) and Zechariah (v. 11)
( each once mention the same land, but each as a quasi-poetic archaism?somewhat as our poets, e.g., Moore and Lord Tennyson, use “ Kathay" for China. Again, Daniel (i. 2), whose standpoint is the actual Babylon, no doubt by “ Shinar” means an actual province of that empire. But, often as that city and empire occur in the historical and prophetic Scriptures, its name is ever Babel, and its people the Kas'ddim. In Joshua it designates an article of commerce—as a Cashmere shawl or a Barcelona handkerchief;
History of Israel (English Transl.), p. 360, ed. 1885. 2 So Gesenius regards it; see Lex. s.v.
or as the ancients spoke of Tyrian purple or Parian marble. This recalls the time when Shinar was a seat of traffic, and probably the nearest emporium across the Euphrates.
But perhaps the strongest evidence of the genuine antique lies in the tribal town names of the Joshuan delimitation; not only those of the historically continuous tribes of Judah and Ephraim, but those of tribes which dwindled out of their early seats, like Simeon and Dan. Some of these retain a peculiar form, as Leshem for Laish, Telem for Telaim, Dimonah for Dibon; or a duplicate, as Kirjath-Sepher= Kirjath-Sannah Debir (Joshua xix. 47, xv. 16, 24, 49 : cf. Judges i. 11; 1 Sam. xv. 4; Neh. xi. 25). The majority of them occur nowhere else; and yet an appreciable proportion have been traced by modern research among the debased Arabic forms which still cling to the soil. The list of southern border-towns of Judah given by Nehemiah (xi. 25 ff.) is meagre as compared with this of Joshua. Another such list occurs in 1 Sam, xxx. 27 ff., that of the chief haunts of David's exile. It confirms the Joshuan list in several instances. This latter knows, moreover, of a “land of Goshen," and a town of that name, in the heart of the early-conquered region, unknown in all later history; a most remarkable duplicate of Jacob's Egyptian place of settlement, possibly derived from the pre-Joshuan ascendancy of Egypt in Palestine, but unaccountable in this record unless it embodied a fact (Joshua x. 41, xi. 16, xv. 51), and incomprehensible to any but a very early writer.
But take the list of border-towns and fortresses in northern Naphtali (xix. 33-39). This region, "all the land of Naphtali," was depopulated, and its people deported by Tiglath Pileser about 740 B.C. It had some two centuries previously been smitten by Benhadad, but it seems, with only a partial devastation (1 Kings xv. 20, 2 Kings xv. 29). These two invasions, especially the second, which was no doubt succeeded by an alien immigration of promiscuous heathenism, must have gone far to efface or alter the relative importance of such towns and fortresses as then existed. But, more than this, it cut off all intercourse with the south, and made the Naphtali region by the time of Hezekiah a foreign country. That king sent messengers to summon the remnant of northern Israel to his passover. They find in Zebulun the northern limit of their possible progress, which exactly stops short of “the land of Naphtali” (2 Chron. xxx. 10, 18). Thus it seems almost impossible that in the Isaian period the materials of such a list as we have in Joshua xix. 33-39 could have existed within reach of any devout Israelite. Those who disparage the general authority of the Chronicler may at any rate trust him in the limit which he fixes to the activity of Hezekiah's piety northwards.
1 Thus Eshtemoa, Jattir, Ashan, the latter as Cor. (or Bor-) Ashan, occur in both ; cf. Josh. xv. 42, xix. 7, xxi. 14, 16.
* Such immigration, we know, took place after the final captivity of the Ten Tribes (2 Kings xvii. 24).