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was well known to thousands of first a Jew and then a Christian. other Jews. In one of these church- The translation of Aquila is much es, (viz. Ephesus,) we know from commended by Augustinen and JeScripture there were many Jews, rome. After these three there were among whom “ the name of the two other translations by christian Lord Jesus was magnified.”h And Jews, whose names have not come in this city lived Theodotion, the down to us; but good testimony is learned Jew,* who translated the borné to them by Athanasius and Old Testament into Greek in the Jerome, who says, that they both do reign of Commodus, nearly 100 years in their translations well explain after John's death. His translation the Scripture concerning Christ, and (many fragments of which we have that Jesus Christ is in one of them to this day) was preferred by the termed the Saviour of the world :P learned; (witness the testimony of which is good testimony also to our Origen and Jerome;)) and the Church point in hand. in their public solemn worship read (4.) The translation and paraTheodotion's Greek version of Dan- phrase of all the Old Testament in iel, in preference to the Septuagint, Chaldee by other Jews, which was so late as Jerome's time,-viz. A.D. in like manner read in their syna390. Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna, gogues. Of the Pentateuch there (another of the seven churches,) ap- have been three Chaldee translations: pears also to have been a Christian viz. that of Onkelos, who lived Jew;k who, after he had preached about 40 years before Christ ;there for 86 years,l was crowned that of Jonathan, the disciple of the with martyrdom for his testimony famous Hillel ; with which Jonathan about A. D. 170.

Simeon, who took Christ in his arms, (3.) The translation of the Old and Gamaliel, Paul's master, are Testament into Greek by Jews, and reputed to have been fellow disby succeeding Jews read and used ciples ;-and the Jerusalem Targum, in their synagogues and places of the author of which is unknown worship; as the quotations of the even to the Jews. All these paraApostles from the Septuagint suffi- phrases render Gen. xlix, 10, “ The ciently testify. Chrysostom calls it sceptre shall not depart. &c. till the door to Christ;" which shews Messiah come ;” and repeatedly the importance of such a testimony; allude to Christ by the title of the and Scaliger shews, that Greek WORD OF THE LORD. Thus, Deut. translations were publicly read in xxxii, 39 is “ When shall the Word the synagogues, throughout all Asia, of the Lord be manifested, that he Greece and Egypt.m I have al- may redeem his people ?" and Gen. ready touched on the Greek Trans- xix, 24 is “Brimstone and fire were lation of Theodotion : there were sent down from the Word of the others by Aquila and Symmachus; Lord.There are also some remarkthe former of whom was first à able testimonies in the Jerusalem Christian, then a Jew; the latter Targum. Thus on Gen. i, 27 and

h Acts xix, 10-17. i Epiphan. Athanas. Itin. S. Scr. j Præf. in Jobum. k Euseb. Hist. lib. iii, c. 32. i Itin. S. Scrip. m Animad. in Euseb. n De Civ. Dei, lib. xv, c, 23. o Jer, in Ezek. iii. p Athan. in Synop. Jerome in Hab. iii.

* He is reputed to have been an Ebionite; but there was a good sort of Ebionites as well as a bad sort.

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iii, 22, we read~" The Word of ing the Chaldee, did in their com• the Lord created man.

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mon converse mingle many remnants 'i, 2, 3.] And the Word of the of the Hebrew (yet sticking in their . Lord said, Behold Adam whom I memories) with the Chaldee; where' have created: he is my only be. by their speech came nearer to the gotten son in the world, as I am Hebrew than to the pure Chaldee; THE ONLY BEGOTTEN [See John iii, from which time that mixture be

16,] in the highest heavens." On came better known by the name of Deut. xxxiii, 6, are these words - Chaldee, and the Syriac was rather Let Reuben live in this world, and the unmixed Chaldee.” For there • let him not die the second death, were indeed three dialects of the • with which the wicked shall die Chaldee or Syriac tongue : first the ! in the world to come.Buxtorf Babylonian, which is the purest, r also bears witness to Jonathan's and in which Daniel and Ezra were paraphrase, 9 saying, “that many very skilful; both having left us places of Scripture concerning certain chapters in their books Christ, or the Messiah, not so ex- written in it. Secondly, the Jeruplicitly written, doth Jonathan salem ; so called, because the re

expound in a christian sense con- turned Jews used it, who lived at i cerning the Messiah.”*

and about Jerusalem. Thirdly, (5.) There has been a further there was the Antiochian ; i. e. the propagation of the truth of the Gos- Comagenian or Maronitican dialect pel by those Jews who had a hand of the Chaldee or Syriac; which in translations of the Old or New afterwards more specially obtained Testament, or both, into Syriac, the name of Syriac, though in subArabic, Ethiopic and Persic. stance (as before observed) it was

Touching the Syriac language it one with the Chaldee. So that for has varied in name according to the distinction's sake we may say, in a circumstances and divisions of the sense, that as the Chaldee is a diaempire; and has been called at differ- lect of the Hebrew, so this Syriac is ent times, Aramæan, or Aramitish, a dialect of the Chaldee. This Syrian, Assyrian, Chaldean, Baby- dialect, so peculiarly called Syriac, lonian, and sometimes Hebrew. The is that in which the most ancient case stands thus : the Chaldee and Syriac translations of the Old and Syriac are essentially one and the New Testament are extant among same language ; and both have been the oriental christians : which diacalled by both names, long before lect, because it was in use at Antithe Jews' captivity in Babylon. Yet ochia, where believers in Christ is not the opinion of the learned to were first called Christians,s was be wholly slighted, who say, “ that called by the name of the Antiochian the Jews at their return from that dialect. And from Comagena (a captivity, having nearly forgotten district of Syria above Cilicia) their pure Hebrew and chiefly speak- it is called the Comagenian dialect, 9 Præf. ad Lex, Chald, et Syr. r Buxt. ad. Gram. Chald. Syr. s Acts xi, 26. because there also used ; and it is translations of the Evangelists; the also called the Maronitican dialect, antiquity of one of which appears by from the Maronites, inhabiting the postscript, noticed by Erpenius; Mount Libanus, Damascus, Tripoli, viz. “ The writing of this book was and the smaller towns of Syria; finished on the sixteenth day of the who to this day do in Syriac read month Banna, in the year 988 of the their lessons out of the sacred Bible, martyrdom of the just ones.—i. e. pronounce their form of public A. D. 1171. worship, perform their ministerial Touching the Ethiopic, note first, offices, and preach their expositions that the Eunuch of Candace, conof the holy Scriptures : which may verted by Philip,u first planted the suffice (though more might be said) faith of Christ, (as all historians testo demonstrate what testimony to tify) in the countries of Ethiopia. the christian religion these christians Nor does it appear that they ever gave, though Jews (at least most of revolted from that faith ; but perthem) by blood ; as the countries severe in it to this day. For ugh where they inhabit sufficiently de- (as Scaliger objectsv) the Auxumites, clare.

* There is one paraphrase of Jonathan on the Psalms, which we possess not : but Helvicus brings forward a passage from it, quoted by Jacobus Christopolitanus, (Epis. in Expos. in Psalm xx,) which is as follows." Psalm ii, 7, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.'—Here are two, the Father and the Son, and three in one, viz. in the Holy Spirit, and these three are one-one I say, in essence, one substance, one God."

who are the smallest part of the Touching the Arabic translation, Ethiopians, were not converted till it is worthy of note, that the Jews, about A. D. 553. Yet what is this to born in and inhabiting Arabia, were the general conversion of the other probably they who carried the first countries of vast Ethiopia, containnews of the Gospel to that coun- ing seventy kingdoms ? Afterwards, try; as will better appear presently, (as the ecclesiastical histories also when I come to speak of the Per- testify) the Jewish apostle Thomas sians. Of the Jews, R. Saadias preached the Gospel among the translated all the Old Testament Ethiopians and Indians. The footinto Arabic,t about A. D. 900; but steps of his ministry were found he wrote it in Hebrew characters there by the Portugese ; for the use of the Jews dispersed observation of the Sabbath, together throughout all the wide empire of with the Lord's day, ceasing therethe Saracens. Of this translation in from all their labours ; (which the Jews printed the Pentateuch at Scaliger himself confesses was an Constantinople, only about a hun- argument of their ancient christidred years since. Besides that of anity and not of Judaism ;) and also Saadias, the Jews have another their not eating blood, according Arabic translation of the Pentateuch to he Apostles' canon, Acts xv. in Hebrew letters, set forth a long After their first conversion, and time since in Mauritania. Scaliger settlement in the christian faith, we printed it A. D. 1622; and calls it have not much concerning them, in a book of singular note. And Er- ecclesiastical history; because fewEupenius prefers it before that of Sa

ropeans have pierced into the interior adias, because it more closely fol- of Ethiopia. lows the Hebrew. There were also Lastly, note the words written among the oriental christians Ara- at the end of the Acts of the bic translations, either of the whole Apostles, and of the four Evangelists book of the Scriptures; or of some in Ethiopic, as giving great light to parts only. And likewise various our point in hand. At the end of

as the

t Erpen. præf. ad Arab. Pentateuch. u Acts viii. v Emend.

ad computum Ethiopicum.

Temp. 1. 7, in notis 3. 7.

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the Acts of the Apostles, we have tongues the wonderful things of these words,“ Here are finished God,” would certainly tell, at their the Acts of the Apostles, whose return to their own country, this prayers be with the writer Tispha strange and true story to their counZion, &c.” At the end of Mat- trymen; were it only as a stupenthew's Gospel are these words, - dous piece of news, coming down “ For the sake of the Father, Son, from heaven upon their great public and Holy Ghost, and for the elect's devotion; but much more as a mat

sake, and endowed with the cross, of salvation, if (as we cannot deny) • be ye, O readers of this book, mind- some of these Persian Jews would be 'ful in your holy prayers of us your part of the three thousand that brethren, Tispha Zion, Melzazo, thereupon believed and were bapand Tansawalā, &c. expecting the tized,"w or of those daily added, hope of the resurrection of the Son. or of the five thousand afterwards For we are all the sons of our Fa- converted at the same feast.y

For •ther Tecla Haimanoth of Mount though these Persian Jews be there

Libanus; we having laboured this called Elamites, and others were • book in much affliction." At the called Cuthites, yet must they be end of Luke's Gospel are these understood to be native Persians ; words;-"Blessed be God who hath one Elymus and his Elamites being ' made you mindful unto grace; the founders of the Persian nation.z • that ye acknowledge the grace Herodotus and other ancients tell us, of our Lord Jesus Christ. I am that the Persians had the whole enpoor and despised, after the man- tire body of the holy Scriptures ner of my forefathers; a pilgrim translated into the Persian lan

of Jerusalem.Now let the reader guage ;—and that many christian lay all together, -viz. the habita- churches were there founded, having tions of the Jews in Ethiopia, the bishops or pastors over them; one Jewish names of men, the situations whereof was at the Council of Nice;a of places, the quotationsof words, and -and that many of them suffered other circumstances ;--and collect martyrdom for the christian religion, thence how much hand the christian as ecclesiastical histories shew us.b Jews had in promoting the truth of They give us indeed this account; the Gospel by the Ethiopic transla- That Sapores, king of Persia, did tions of the Scriptures.

by the instigation of the Magicians Touching the Persic, let us re- raise great persecution against the member, in the first place, that Persian christians; so that their some of the Jews who heard the churches being laid waste, Simeon, Apostles, on the day of Pentecost, a principal bishop of Seleucia, and were Persians by country, though Ustazan, the chief of the Eunuchs, Jews in blood and religion; as is and with them a hundred bishops, evident from Acts ii, 5–10. This and many other of the ministry, forms a probable argument, that were crowned with martyrdom, A.D. these Persian Jews carried the first 343. That afterwards under Isde. news of Christ and his Gospel to gerdi, or Vararim, the Church of Persia ; for they who confessed, Christ was there again propagated, “ We do hear them speak in our by means of Theodosius junior,

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W v. 41.

xv. 47. Acts iv. 4. z Jos. Ant. lib. 1. c. 7. a Eus. in vit. Constant.

Sozom. lib. 2, c. 8, &c. Hieron. on Chron, Theod. lib. 1. c. 24.

waging war against the king of London. This translation was written Persia, in defence of the Church, about 300 years since, and probably about A. D. 420. But in the year by some Christian Jew or Jews, as of Christ 618, it began to go ill the words in Persic at the end again with the Persian churches; thereof seem to import, viz.—“The for Cosroes king of Persia despoiled four glorious Gospels of Matthew, all the churches in his dominions, Mark, Luke, and John are finished, and by force and threats compelled in the city of Caffa, in the third day many of the christians to turn to of the week, in the 9th month of the heresy of the Nestorians, (who Tamuz, in the year of Christ the detract from the deity of Christ,) Messiah, 1341, by the hand of the to the end he might be avenged on weakest people of God, Simon Ibn them body and soul; till at length, Joseph, Ibn Abraham Altabriz, &c." by the most righteous judgement of which names, and the style people God, the said Cosroes was appre- of God, are quite Jewish ; as the hended by his eldest son Siroes, who commendation of the Gospels sigrestored all the captives that were nifies their christianity. imprisoned in all Persia, together (6.) In the sixth place, as a proof with Zecharias, the Patriarch of of Jewish witnessing to Christ, I Jerusalem, a Christian Jew, its his re- would just notice the Martyrdom or lation, name and sufferings testify.”c other persecutions of Christian Jews.

The Persic translations of the On this head we may be more brief, Scriptures extant in Europe, either having anticipated ourselves in sevin manuscript or in print, are the eral remarkable particulars. About five Books of Moses, the Psalms, the 36th year of Christ, on the and the four Evangelists; neither of stoning of Stephen for preaching which is very ancient. The first the Gospel,d (who is therefore called of these was translated (which is the first martyr,) the Jewish Christian much to our purpose) out of He- Church at Jerusalem was scattered brew into Persic by Jacobus Ton- from thence, preaching the Gospel as vosius, (alias Tusius) a Jew, taking they went throughout the countries his name from the city and famous of Judea, Samaria, &c.e About the university of Tus. This he trans- 39th year of Christ, they of the lated for the use of the Jews living Church of Jerusalem, thus scattered, in Persia ; and this the Jews printed do now travel as far as Phænice, in the Hebrew character at Con- Cyprus, and Antiochia ; but“preachstantinople, only about a hundred ing the word (mark well what folyears since,-viz. A. D. 1551. This lows) to none but unto Jews only : Persic Pentateuch excellently ex- &c. and the hand of the Lord was pounds that famous prophecy Gen. with them, and a great number bexlix, 10, to be meant of Christ the lieved, and turned to the Lord :"f Messiah; contrary to the road of the at which place, Antioch, we have modern Rabbins. Of the four Evan- further evidence of sad persecutions gelists there are two Persic transla- of them in Acts xiv, 19, &c. About tions, the best of which is the learned the 42d year of Christ, James the Pocock's, printed in the fifth volume Apostle, brother of John, and surof the Oriental Bible set forth at named the Elder, is beheaded for

d Acts vii,

e Acts viii.

c See Buchol. Jud. Chron. ad A, D. 618 et 627.

f Acts xi, 19–21.

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