Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

the holy Scriptures; afterwards many more were added by Dr. Scattergood; last of all, some References of that admirable Textuary, Dr. Lloyd, the late learned Bishop of Worcester, were added.

Só that sometimes to one fingle Verse there are eight or ten, and sometimes many more References. Now the turning to all these, not to mention the Difficulty of keeping open the Bible in several Places at once, requires much Time, and is a great Stop in reading. For which Reason, except on some particular Occasions, I am ready to think, they are but feldom consulted. I have therefore often thought, That the placing these References under the Text in Words at length, so that they might be seen at one Viewo, would mightily conduce to the understanding the Scriptures, and to fix the important Truths delivered in them in the Mind of the Reader, who will be naturally led to think those Truths of the highest Consequence, which are frequently inculcated in the sacred Pages. Thus when we read the References under Matt. 16. 27. and observe how frequently it is declared, both in the Old and New Testament, that God will render to everyone according to his Works, one would think it could not fail to make us circumfpect in our Ways, and diligent that our Works and Actions may be such, as will give us a reasonable Hope, that we shall not only escape Punishment, but, through the Mercy of God, and the Merits of Christ, be entitled to a Reward from him. If such a Consideration will not inspire us with Zeal, and make us fruitful, and abound in all good Works to the Glory and Praise of God; if it will not convince us of the Fallacy of that common Delusion, namely, that a few cold and ineffeétwal Wishes, and a little Sorrow on a sick or a Death-bed, though we have omitted to do those good Works we might and ought to have done, and done many evil and wicked Works which we might and ought to have left undone ; I say, if this express declaration of Almighty God, so often repeated, will not rouse and awaken us out of our Delusion, it is hard to say what will. Nor is it necessary to confine this Declaration wholly to Rewards and Funishments in a future State ; for tho' it chiefly refers to that, yet it may be extended, and I doubt not but it is in part often made good to many even in the present Life.

Before I proceed to give the Reader an Account of what he is to expect in this work, I would beg leave to premise one caution, namely, That upou reading the References

b

he would not in any Matter of Moment be too quick in forming his Judgment, lest he be led into Mistakes and Errors, by the meer Sound of Words. For unless he has so read the Scriptures, as to be able in some Measure to recolle&t the Context, (which it were to be wished many had done) he will often find it necessary to turn to the Places them selves.

The Things I would advertise the Reader of, are these following: First, That the Chronology, here used

is that of Bishop Usher, which is put in some of the latter Editions of the English Bible. I have placed it at the Top of the Page, and in the Margin where the Year alters.

Secondly, The Marginal Readings are put between Brackets [ ] with the Text, the Clause or Word to which the Reading belongs, having an Asterisk * before it. Those which were too long to be placed thus, I have cast at the Bottom of the Page among the Notes, which I have marked with a double dagger, thus .

Thirdly, The References are placed in two Columns, imme. diately under the Text, and referr'd to by the Letters -, (c. And the Notes are put under then, and referr'd to by Figures. In transcribing the References, tho' only a Part or Clause of the Verse is referr'd to, I have sometimes set down the whole Verse, especially when it contains some weighty Do&trine or Duty. And when I have taken only a Part of the Verse, I have often intimated it to the Reader, by putting a fhort Line thus Where the References under any Head are many, they do for the most Part stand in the Order they lie in the Bible. And if the Convenience of placing them so had been sooner observed, they should all have been put in that Order. But a great part of the Work was printed before this was considered.

Fourthly, The References here set down are not all of them strictly parallel. Some are verbal, and give some Light to the Words, others are real, and treat of the Matter it self, which is proposed in the Words. Thus some are Instances and Examples of the Practice of the Duty enjoined, &c. others are, it may be, Motives to engage to the Practice thereof, or to difswade from the Commission of the Sin, and the like. For Example ; under Matt. 4. 17. are several Texts respecting Repentance; some of which express the Duty, as Matt. 3. 2, 8. Mar. 1.15. Mar. 6. 12. Luk. 24• 47

Ach

[ocr errors]

Aiz. 2. 38. Axt. 17. 30.

Some describe the Nature of Repentance ; as i Kin. 8. 47, 48, 49. Job 42. 6. Ezek. 18. 30. Luk. 3. 8. AZ. 26. 20.

Others contain Motives to Practice; as Matt. 9. 13:

Luk. 13. 3.

Lv. 15. 7. A&t. 3. 19., Rom. 2. 4. 2 Cor. 7. 10. 2 Pet. 3. 9. The Reader, by cafting his Eye over the References under any Text, will soon see to what Heads they are to be reduced. Sometimes one Text expresses both the Duy, and the Motive to practise it; and therefore for this and other Reasons, it was not pra&ticable to set them in diftin&t Paragraphs. I might have mentioned other Heads, as the Parts of Repentance, &c. but these are enow to illustrate what I am saying, and likewise to Shew what Use may be made of this Book, by Christians in their private Retirements. Sometimes some Scriptures are sét down by Way of Opposition. For Instance, under Matt. 5: 3. are some Texts respecting the Sin of Pride, and under Rev. 2. 17. are placed the Passages which speak of the Worshippers of the Beast, who had his Mark on their Foreheads and in their Hands, as well as those which mention the neto Name given to, and the Seal set upon the Servants of God.

Fifthly, I have for the most Part set down all the References in the last and fullest Edition of the Bible, having corrected several Mistakes in the Print. Some few I have omitted ; but whether they were Mistakes in the Print, or in me not being able to discern their Relation to the Text they referr'd to, I cannot determine.

Sixthly, The References which have an Asterisk * before them, are supposed to be put by the Translators of the Bible; those which have a Dagger t, by Dr. Scattergood; those which have three Points before them, by Dr. Lloyd the late learned Bishop of Worcester ; those which have no mark before them were added now, being partly collected from my own Observation, partly from the Otavo Edition of the Greek Testament, printed at Amsterdam in the Year 1711, which is said to contain more than even Dr. Mills's Édition of the Greek Teftament; and partly from the Folio Edition of Mr. Sam. Clark's Annotations. But tho' I türn'd to most of the Texts referr'd to by thëse Authors; yet ! made Choice þut of some of them. För I could not discern the Relation of some to the Text, others did not feem of any great Moment, others seemed to be Parely tria tićal, and not to anfwer the End I proposed; which was

[ocr errors]

hot

not the Benefit of the Learned, but of fuch commoni Christians as diligently and frequently read the holy Scriptures, and are desirous to understand them; of which Number there are, God be praised, not a few. It is fometimes surprizing to observe, what a Progress in divine Knowledge fome make, who are not learned, but who (1) diligently and constantly read the Scriptures with an upright and honest Mind, and with a fervent Defire not only to know, but to do the Will of God, which sometimes extends to obfcure and difficult Points in Divinity.

Seventhly, I have often put the Scriptures reducible to one Head under one Text of Scripture, and as often as that Matter recurs, I have referr'd to that Place. For Example, the Texts relating to the Love of each other, which the Gospel lays such a mighty Stress upon, and without which neither the moft Orthodox Faith, nor any other Pretenfions to Religion, are of any Value in the Sight of God; these Texts I have put under Foh. 13. 34. In all those Places therefore where this comprehensive duty is mentioned, I refer to this place, setting down first the Texts in the Margin of the Bible. For Instance, in the Bible with References against Matt. 22. 39. are these following Texts, * Lev. 19. 18. Mar. 12. 31. of Rom. 13. 9. Gal. 5. 14. fam. 2. 8. after which is added, See on foh. 13. 34. that is, you will find these Texts in Words at length under Joh. 1.3. 34. and so in many other Instances. In fuch References the Reader will observe, that

the Text referr'd to, as well as those ser under it, generally re| lates to the fame Subject. As in the Instance above, Fob.

13. 34. relates to the Duty of loving each other, as well as Lev. 19. 18, &c. I have since thought, that if this Method had been more generally followed, it would have been better; but the Confideration of the Objection I shall presently

speak

(1) The Church of Rome, fenfible how little the Writings of the Apo. Atles make for the Doctrines peculiar to their Church; as Purgatory, worshipping Saints and Angels, the Communion in one kind, &-c: hath forbid the Laity to read the Scriptures. But the Ancient Ecclesiastical Writers required All Men to read the Scriptures, commending those who did so, and condemning thofe who neglected it. They advised them to get Bibles for the Cure of their Souls, that they not only might have enough for themselves, but be able to help others, and inftru Wife, and Children, and Neighbours

. They ascribe all Evils to this Cause, that Men do not know the Scriptures. See Dr. Lloyd's Sermon, P. 35. which is referr'd to above.

[peak to, prevailed with me to omit it in many Instances. When there are no Texts fet down before that referr'd to, the Reason is, either there are none, or it may be not more than one, in the Margin of the Bible at that place. I the rather mention this, because sometimes I have referr’d in this Manner; when it may be, there is but one Text besides the Place referr'd to; which was nécessary to bring the Work within compass.

Such kind of References being in some places frequent, especially in the Gospels, in the Beginning and Conclusion of tome of the Epistles, and towards the latter end of the New Testam ment, the Trouble of turning to them may be an Objection. To this therefore I answer, I have in this Matter taken 110 other Liberty, than all Expositors of the holy Scriptures make Use of, That had there been no nero References, it would have been eafier for me to have set them down in Words at length, as they lie in the Margin of the Bible ; but considering the great Number of new References, the Work would have been too large; or if those had been omitted; it would not have been so useful. Besides, the Reader will sometimes find so many more Texts relating to the fame Subject, as will make him amends for the Trouble in turning to them; to lessen which, I have set not only the Name of the Book, but the Chapter, at the top of every Page. These References, if confidered with Respect to those in the Margin of the Bible, are not so frequent as they may appear to be ; for they are sometimes set down, when there is not any Reference in the Margin of the Bible.

Eighthly, When a Reference is either in the Chapter. before or following, I have, to shorten the Work, sometimes omitted the Words, it being eafie to turn to it. And if any Reference is set down without the Words, the Place being neither in the Chapter before nor after, it denotes that the Words are the same, or very near the same, with the Text under which it is set. For Instance, under Joh. 12. 19. is set Joh. 11. 47; but the Words being in the former Chapter, they are omitted: Again, under Joh. 12. 38. are set isa. 53. 1. and Rom. 10. 16. but the Words are omitted, because they are very near the fame with Joh. 1 2. 39.

Ninthly, The Notes are for the most part on difficult an! miftaken Places of Scripture, and designed for the Ule di such as cannot consult larger Volumes. For which Rea. fon I have, as much as I could, industriously avoided the a 2

Ule

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »