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incorporated into the same society with themselves, as this author represents it, but to love and do good to them considered as strangers, and under that denomination. This is urged upon them in a pathetical manner, both by arguments drawn from the example of the merciful God himself, who loveth the stranger;' and because they themselves had been strangers,' and knew the heart of strangers,' Deut. x. 17, 18, 19. The strangers are often joined with the poor, the widow, and the fatherless, yea, and with the Levites, as persons that should in a particular manner be pitied and assisted ; and whom it was a very great wickedness to vex or oppress, Deut. xxiv. 19; Lev. xxv. 35; Numb. xxvi. 11. The gleanings of the fields were to be left for them as well as the other poor, Lev. xix. 10. xxiii. 22; Deut. xxiv. 20, 21. 22. And agreeable to these declarations of the law, to deal by oppression with the stranger,' and to 'oppress the stranger wrongfully,' is represented as a crime and wickedness of a very heinous nature, and those that are guilty of it are reckoned amongst the worst of sinners, Ezek. xxii, 7, 29; Mal. iii. 5. I add as a proof of the great humanity of Moses's laws, that one design for which the Sabbath was instituted is there represented to be, that their men servants and maid servants, and the stranger might 'rest and be refreshed,' Exod. xxiii. 12; Deut. v. 14, 18. Nor does it appear that their kindness was to be confined to strangers of any one party or religion. It is true, they were not to suffer strangers to dwell among them that openly professed idolatry, because this was (as I shall show) a subversion of their peculiar constitution. But in every other case they were to allow strangers of all nations to live among them, and were obliged by their law to treat them with great kindness and humanity. So that this constitution was not on so narrow a foundation as the author represents it. They were not to confine their kindness to those of their own nation or religion, but to extend it to all that worshipped the one true God, though they did not live by their laws, nor observe their customs: and were far from exacting a rigid uniformity of sentiments or practice.

This writer indeed, to make the Mosaical constitution seem narrower, thinks fit to represent it thus, that their kindness was to extend no further than to members of their own society,' that is, ' to those who were of the natural seed of Abraham, or such as by proselytism were incorporated with them. But it is far from being

' true, that their kindness was to be confined to those who were incorporated with them, and made members of that particular society. This writer himself elsewhere acknowledgeth, 'that under that constitution there was room left for all nations to be proselyted or naturalized, without being circumcised or submitting to the ceremonial law,' p. 359. Here indeed he shows his ignorance of the Jewish constitutions, or else wilfully misrepresents it, when he makes their being proselyted and their being naturalized to be the same thing; and in several other parts of his book he calls proselytism naturalization, as if they were synonymous terms. But though the proselytes of justice, who were circumcised and obliged

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to observe the ceremonial law, might be properly said to be naturalized, and incorporated with them, and to become members of that society: the proselytes of the gate of whom he there speaks, could not be said to be so, nor were ever regarded by the Jews as incorporated with them, or members of their society. They still regarded them as Gentiles, and were wont to call them the pious among the Gentiles.' And yet all such persons of whatsoever nation were allowed to live amongst them, and the law of Moses obliged the Israelites to treat them with great humanity and benevolence, though they were not circumcised, and did not submit to the ceremonial law. Nor were they ever warranted by that law to enforce the observation of it by fire and sword, or to use any methods of violence in order to proselyte those of any other nation to their religion, or to persecute them if they refused to conform to their peculiar rites. There is not any one precept in the whole law to this purpose. It is therefore a very wrong account that he gives of the Jewish state or religion of Moses, when he represents it as founded in the principles of persecution, and as absolutely inconsistent with toleration, indulgence, and liberty of conscience, or the rights of private judgment.

It is true, that under that constitution, if any among the Israelites openly served other gods, and endeavoured to seduce others to do so, they were to be put to death; and if a town or city fell off to the open practice of idolatry, the ringleaders were to be inquired after and punished with death; and if the town persisted in it after due inquiry and admonition, it was to be destroyed. But if we consider the peculiar nature of that constitution, this may easily be accounted for. One great design for which that polity was erected, was to establish the worship of the one true God in opposition to idolatry. This was not only the chief principle of their religion, but the principal maxim of their state. 'For they were properly a community or body of people formed into a sacred polity under God, not only as the great Governor of the world as he is to the rest of mankind, but as in a special sense their King and Governor, who had been pleased to enter into a peculiar relation to them to this purpose, whom they had by solemn covenant acknowledged and recognized as such, and to whom they had promised and vowed obedience. This was the fundamental of their polity, the original contract upon which their state was founded. Their possession of the land of Canaan, and all the advantages and privileges promised them, absolutely depended by covenant upon their persevering in the worship of the true God. So that idolatry or the worshipping of other gods, besides the common guilt inseparable from it, as it is a very criminal breach of the law of nature, was in that constitution an act of rebellion against their rightful acknowledged sovereign, and a dissolving the original fundamental contract that lay at the foundation of their whole constitution, and by which it subsisted. And in this view of things, those that were guilty of idolatry were to be regarded as in the worst sense traitors and enemies to their country, engaged in a design to subvert their fundamental constitution, and that original covenant on which their preservation as a community, and their right to all their privileges, and to their country itself depended. And therefore in such a circumstance of things, and in

state so constituted, it was far from being cruel or unjust, or contrary to the liberties of mankind, or the rights of conscience, to punish idolaters with death; any more than it is in other countries and states to punish high treason with death, or a conspiracy to subvert the state. And to have tolerated idolatry in such a constitution, would have been as great an absurdity, as it would have been in any other state to tolerate the open avowed enemies of the state, and those who manifestly endeavour to subvert it.

Nor does it follow that therefore idolaters are now to be punished with death in Christian states and commonwealths, because that particular law and constitution enjoining it is now no longer in force. It is true this writer urges, that whereas it has been commonly said, that the Jewish religion and government was a theocracy, and that no consequence can be drawn from it, to any other mere human forms of government; this must be a great mistake. For it can scarcely be doubted, that if God was to form any scheme or model of government, it would be in all respects the fittest, wisest, and best that could be pitched upon, and worthy to be imitated under every other state and constitution. To deny this would be to deny God's righteousness and superior wisdom. And therefore he hopes the patrons of the old scheme of the Jewish law and religion, and they who would now found Christianity upon Judaism, will consider what they are about before they go much further,' p. 373.

It will be easily owned that a scheme and model of government of God's own appointment must be the fittest and wisest, and most worthy to be imitated in the like circumstances and state of things; and consequently it will be owned that in such a polity so circumstanced and constituted, and of such a peculiar nature as the Jewish was, the constitutions of that commonwealth which were of divine appointment would be worthy to be imitated. But it does not follow that what God himself, who is certainly the best judge, thought fittest and properest in one circumstance or state of things, ought to be followed and imitated in every other state and circumstance of things : or that the laws and constitutions he gave as peculiarly adapted to such a constitution should be imitated by others, where that constitution with the peculiar reasons on which it was founded no longer subsists. And this author himself must acknowledge this, since he expressly saith, p. 207. That 'what God would require at one time under such particular relations and circumstances, he would not require at another time under other relations, and quite different or contrary circumstances.'

But though idolatry for the reasons now mentioned was punished with death in the land of Israel, yet it is far from being true, though this author repeats it over and over with great confidence, that they were obliged by the law to extirpate idolatry, and destroy idolaters in all nations with fire and sword.' No such thing appears in the law of Moses. The commands there given to destroy idolaters manifestly relate to those among themselves, and in their own land that should worship other gods: as is evident from Deut. chap. xiii. And when they are commanded to destroy all the monuments of idolatry, that also plainly relates to the land of Canaan, as appears from all the passages where this is required, Exod. xxiii. 23, 24 ; xxxiv. 11, 13; Numb. xxxiii. 52; Deut. vii. 5—25 ; xii. 1, 21. See also Judg. ii. 2, and there is not one precept in the whole law directing and encouraging them to extirpate idolatry, and to destroy idolaters in other countries by fire and sword. Nor do we read of any war ever undertaken by any of the kings of Judah or Israel beyond the bounds of Palestine, merely to extirpate idolatry and to destroy idolaters. David was the most victorious prince they ever had, and was exceedingly zealous against idolatry, and yet it doth not appear that any one of his wars was undertaken merely for the sake of exterminating idolatry; nor is it ever taken notice of that he destroyed the monuments of idolatry in those countries which he subdued, but only that they became tributary to him, and brought him gifts.

It is hard to conceive upon what grounds this writer could assert as he does, that Moses was very confident that his people should have it in their power to extend their conquering arms, not only in Canaan but all the rest of the world. He often indeed expresses his confidence that they should conquer Canaan and destroy the nations there whom God had devoted to destruction; but he never once intimates any confidence that he had concerning their obtaining an universal enpire. There is not the least hint in all the Mosaic writings that ever he believed or expected any such thing, but a great deal to the contrary. He most clearly and expressly foretels their many calamities and dispensations ; that they should be scattered through all nations, not as lords and conquerors, but as captives, and under the power of their enemies, see Lev. xxvi. and Deut. xxviii., and his admirable song, Deut. xxxii. This author himself tells us, 'that nothing has since happened to the Jews, but what Moses had foretold. He knew from what he had seen and experienced of them, that after his death they would forsake God, forfeit all the favour and protection of his providence, and be finally destroyed and dissolved as a people. And he left it upon record against them, and caused his last dying words to be written and prescribed in the book of the law, pp. 327, 328. Though the account he gives of what Moses had experienced of them will by no means account for the clear and admirable predictions he utters concerning the fate of that people in succeeding ages, and the surprising revolutions that befel them ; yet it appears from the author's own confession, that Moses did not believe and expect that they would extend their conquests through all nations, and subdue them by fire and sword, of which yet this same writer

Moses was very confident.' Nor is it true that he encouraged and directed them to extend their conquests, or that 'their


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constitution and plan of government was designed and contrived' for it. So far from this, that rather the whole frame of their government was so contrived as to discourage and hinder them from an ambition of enlarging their empire. Moses could not more effectually hinder it, than by binding them to the observance of such laws and constitutions, as rendered it in a great measure extremely difficult, if not impracticable, to make and maintain large conquests abroad. The utmost extent of dominion that is ever mentioned as what should any way, or at any time belong unto them, and which they actually possessed in the reign of David and Solomon, was but of a small extent compared with the rest of the world, even as known in Moses's time, viz. from the river of Egypt to Euphrates, Gen. xv. 18, but the land that was particularly given them for a possession was very small, and Moses describes it with great exactness, and the bounds of it, Numb. xxxiv. 1–13. Their being divided into several tribes, each of which were kept distinct, and had their several lots particularly assigned them in the land of Canaan; and their being forbidden ever to alienate their inheritances there ; their having their cities of refuge assigned to them only within the limits of that land ; their being obliged to offer all their sacrifices in that land, and at the tabernacle or temple there ; their sabbatical years and jubilees, and many other constitutions of a peculiar nature, and which were confined in the original appointment to the land of Canaan; all these things sufficiently show that they were originally designed quietly to enjoy their own land, governed by their own laws, without ambitiously attempting to extend their conquests and disturb their neighbours. Nor can it be supposed that Moses, who was a very wise man, much less that God himself would have ever given them such laws and constitutions as these, if he had had it in view to encourage the people to go to conquer all nations, and extend their empire and religion throughout the world. Must they attempt an universal or extensive dominion, all whose most solemn acts of religion and worship were by the fundamental law of their polity to be confined to one small country ? and to one particular place there? Must they attempt to disturb and annoy their neighbours merely from an ambitious desire of empire, when all their males were expressly and solemnly obliged by their law to appear three times a year before God at the sanctuary, and to leave their towns and houses unguarded, except with women and children? The same remark may be made upon that constitution whereby their kings are forbidden to multiply horses to themselves. Can it be supposed, , that Moses would have commanded this if he had designed his people for extending their conquests through a great part of the world, which could scarcely be expected or attempted without cruelty ? This is a plain proof that he designed to prevent or mortify a restless ambition and desire of conquest, by in a great measure rendering them incapable of it in an ordinary way. Though if they were invaded he exhorts them not to fear the horses and chariots of their enemies, but to trust in God; to show, that they were de

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