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senate. Would to God that not only Thou, but also ALL that hear me this *. both almost and altogether such as I am, except these bonds ! hat a prodigious effect must this striking conclusion, and the sight of the irons held up' to enforce it, make upon the minds of the audience . During the two years that St. Paul was a prisoner at large, and lived at Rome in his own hired house, he was subjected to this confinement. Paul was suffered to dwell with a soldier that kept him. The circumstance of publicly wearing this chain, and being thus coupled to a soldier, was very disgraceful and dishonourable, and the ignomy of it would naturally occasion the desertion of former friends and acquaintance. Hence the apostle immortalises the name of Onesiphorus, and fervently intercedes with God to bless his family, and to remember him in the day of future recompences for a rare instance of distinguished fidelity and affection to him when all had turned away from him and forsaken him. The Lord give mercy to the house of Onesiphorus, for he of refreshed me, and was not AshAMED of my chAIN, but immediately upon his arrival in Rome he sought me out very diligently till he found me ! The Lord grant unto him that he may find mercy of the Lord in that day. (2 Tim. i. 16, 17, 18. - * “ so the prisoner was fastened to two soldiers, one on each side, wearing a chain both on his right and left hand. St. Paul at first was thus confined. When the tribune received him from the hands of the Jews, he commanded him to be bound with two chains. Acts xxi. 33.). In this manner was Peter fettered and confined by erod Agrippa. “The same night Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains.” (Acts xii. 6.) “It further appears, that if the soldiers, who were thus appointed to guard criminals, and to whom they were chained, suffered the risoner to escape, they were punished with death. Thus, when £. was delivered out of prison by a miracle, the next morning we read there was no small confusion among the soldiers who were appointed his guards, and to whom he had been chained, what was become of Peter. “Whence it appears that his deliverance had been effected, and his shackles had been miraculously unloosed, without their knowledge, when they were sunk in repose. Upon which Herod, after making a fruitless search for him, ordered all those who had been entrusted with the custody of Peter to be executed. (Acts xii. 19.) In like manner also keepers of prisons were punished with death, if the confined made their escape. This is evident from what is related concerning the imprisonment of Paul and Silas at Philippi. These, after their bodies were mangled with scourges, were precipitated into the public dungeon, and their feet were made fast in the stocks. At midnight these good men prayed and sang praises to God in these circumstances; when suddenly a dreadful earthquake shook the whole prison to its foundation, all the doors in an instant flew open, and the shackles of all the prisoners dropped to the ground. This violent concussion awakening the keeper, when he saw the doors of the prison wide.open, he drew his sword, and was going to plunge it in his bosom, concluding that all the prisoners had escaped. In that crisis Paul called to him with a loud voice, entreating him not to lay violent hands upon himself, assuring him all the prisoners were safe. o W. “The Roman tribunal, if we may judge of it from what is related concerning Pilate's, was erected on a raised stage, the floor of which was embellished with a tesselated pavement. This consisted of little square pieces of marble, or of stones of various colours, which were disposed and arranged with great art and elegance, to form a chequered and pleasing appearance." Pliny informs us that this refinement was first introduced among the Romans by Sylla.” Their great men were so fond of this magnificence, and thought it so essential to the elegance and splendour of life, that they appear to have carried with them these splendid materials to form and compose these elaborate floors, for their tents, for their houses, and for their tribunals, wherever they removed”—from a depraved and most wretchedly vitiated taste, at last deeming them a necessary and indispensable furniture, not merely a vain and proud display of grandeur and greatness. With this variegated pavement, composed of pieces of marble or stone thus disposed and combined, the evangelist informs us, that the floor of Pilate's tribunal was ornamented. (John xix. 13.) Such an embellishment of a tribunal was only a proud * ostentatious display to the world of Italian greatness and magnificence, calculated less for real use than to strike the beholders with an idea of the boundless prodigality and extravagance of the Romans. “Having mentioned #. the Roman procurator, we cannot close this section without remarking the efforts he repeatedly made, when he sat in judgment upon Jesus, to save him from the determined fury of the Jews. Five successive attempts are enumerated by commentators and critics. He had the fullest conviction of his innocence—that it was merely through malice, and a virulence which nothing could placate, that they demanded his execution. Yet though the governor for a long time resisted all their united clamour and importunity, and, conscious that he had done nothing worthy of death, steadily refused to pronounce the sentence of condemnation upon him; yet one argument, which in a menacing manner they addressed to him, at last totally shook his firmness, and induced him to yield to their sanguinary purpose. The Jews, after aggravating his guilt, and employing every expedient in vain to influence the president to inflict capital punishment upon him, at last cried out: If thou let this man go, thou art not Caesar's friend; whosoever maketh himself a king, speaketh against Caesar. Then delivered he him, therefore, to them to be crucified. Upon hearing this, all his former firmness instantly vanished; he could stem the torrent of popular fury no longer; to this he yielded, and immediately ordered his execution. This conduct of Pilate arose from his perfect knowledge of the character and temper of his master Tiberius, who was a gloomy old tyrant, day and night incessantly haunted with the fiends of jealousy and suspicion—who would never forgive any innovations in his government, but punished the authors and abettors of them with inexorable death." Pilate, therefore, hearing the Jews reiterating this with menaces, that if he let him go he was not Caesar's friend— knowing the jealousy and cruelty of Tiberius,” and fearing that the disappointed rage of the Jews would instigate them to accuse him to the old tyrant, as abetting and suffering a person to escape with impunity, who had assumed the regal title and character in one of his provinces, was alarmed for his own safety; and rather than draw down upon his devoted head the resentment of the sovereign, who would never forgive or forget an injury, real or imaginary, contrary to his own judgment and clear persuasion of the innocence of Jesus, sentenced him to be crucified ?” VI. Though not strictly a Roman tribunal, yet as its sittings were permitted by the Roman government, the senate and court of ...Areopagus, at Athens, claims a concise notice in this place. This tribunal is said to have been instituted at Athens, by Cecrops the founder of that city, and was celebrated for the strict equity of its decisions. Among the various causes of which it took cognizance, were matters of religion, the consecration of new gods, erection of temples and altars, and the introduction of new ceremonies into divine worship. On this account St. Paul was brought before the tribunal of the Areopagus as a setter forth of strange gods, because he preached unto the Athenians, Jesus and Avagraqis or the Resurrection. (Acts xvii. 19.) Its sittings were held on the Ageing IIayo; or Hill of Mars (whence its name was derived), which is situated in the midst of the city of Athens, opposite to the Acropolis or citadel, and is an insulated precipitous rock, broken towards the south, and on the north side sloping gently down to the temple of Theseus. Its appearance is thus described by Dr. E. D. Clarke: —“It is not possible to conceive a situation of greater peril, or one more calculated to prove the sincerity of a preacher, than that in which the apostle was here placed : and the truth of this, perhaps, will never be better felt than by a spectator, who from this eminence actually beholds the monuments of pagan pomp and superstition, by which he, whom the Athenians considered as the setter forth of strange gods, was then surrounded : representing to the imagination the disciples of Socrates and of Plato, the dogmatist

1 Prolatam, sicut erat catenatus, manum ostendit. Justin, lib. xiv. cap. 3. p. 395. Gronovii.

1 Opus tessellatum ex parvulis coloris varii lapillis quadratis constabat, quibus solum pavimenti incrustabatur. Varro de re rustica, lib. iii. 1.

2 Lithostrota acceptavere sub Sylla. Plinii Hist. Nat. lib. xxxvi. p. 60.

3. In expeditionibus tessella at sectilia pavimenta circumtulisse. Suetonius vita i. Caesaris, cap. 46. edit. variorum Lug. Bat. 1662. Wid. etiam not. Salmasii in QC.

! See, Suetonius, Tacitus, Dion Cassius. * Philo makes the very same remark concerning Pilate, p. 390. edit, Mangey.

of the porch, and the sceptic of the academy, addressed by a...; and lowly man, who, rude in speech, without the enticing words of man's wisdom, enjoined precepts contrary to their taste, and very hostile to their prejudices. One of the peculiar privileges of the Areopagita, seems to have been set at defiance by the zeal of Saint Paul on this occasion; namely, that of inflicting extreme and exemplary punishment upon any person, who should slight the celebration of the holy mysteries, or blaspheme the gods of Greece. We ascended to the summit by means of steps cut in the natural stone. The sublime scene here exhibited, is so striking, that a brief description of it may prove how truly it offers to us a commentary upon the apostle's words, as they were delivered upon the spot. He stood upon the top of the rock, and beneath the canopy of heaven. Before him there was spread a glorious prospect of mountains, islands, seas, and skies: behind him towered the lofty Acropolis, crowned with all its marble temples. Thus every object, whether in the face of nature, or among the works of art, conspired to elevate the mind, and to fill it with reverence towards that BEING, who made and governs the world (Acts xvii. 24, 28.); who sitteth in that light which no mortal eye can approach, and yet is nigh unto the meanest of his creatures; in whom we live and move and have our being.”"


I. CRIMES AGAINST God.-1. Idolatry.—2. Blasphemy.—3. Falsely Prophesying.—4. Divination.—5. Perjury.—II. CRIMEs AGAINst ARENTs AND RULERs.-III. CRIMEs AGAINST PRoPERTY :— 1. Theft.—2. Man-stealing—3. The Crime of denying any thing taken in trust, or found.—4. Regulations concerning Debtors.IV. CRIMEs AGAINST THE PERson.—1. JMurder.—2. Homicide.— 3. Corporal Injuries.—4. Crimes of Lust.—5. CRIMEs of MALice.

I. TT has been shown in a preceding chapter,” that the maintenance of the worship of the only true God was a fundamental object of the Mosaic polity. The government of the Israelites being a Theocracy, that is, one in which the supreme legislative power was vested in the Almighty, who was regarded as their king, it was to be expected that, in a state confessedly religious, crimes against the Supreme Majesty of Jehovah should occupy a primary place in the statutes given by Moses to that people. Accordingly, 1. Idolatry, that is, the worship of other gods, in the Mosaic 1 Dr. Clarke's Travels, vol. vi. pp. 263—265. See also Mr. Dodwell's Classical and Topographical Tour through {{..., vol. i. pp. 361, 362. 2 This section is wholly an abridgment of Michaelis's Commentaries, vol. iv. law occupies the first place in the list of crimes. It was indeed, a crime not merely against God, but also against a fundamental law of the state, and consequently was a species of high treason, which was capitally punished. This crime consisted not in ideas and opinions, but in the overt act of worshipping other gods. An Israelite therefore was guilty of idolatry, . (1.) When he actually worshipped other gods besides Jehovah, the only true God. This was, properly speaking, the state crime just noticed; and it is, at the same time, the greatest of all offences against sound reason and common sense. This crime was prohibited in the first of the ten commandments, (Exod. xx. 3.) (2.) By worshipping images, whether of the true God under a visible form, to which the Israelites were but too prone (Exod. xxxii. 4, 5. Judg. xvii. 3. xviii. 4–6. 14—17. 30, 31. vi. 25–33. viii. 24–27. 1 Kings xii. 26–31.), or of the images of the gods of the Gentiles, of which we have so many instances in the sacred history. All image-worship whatever is expressly forbidden in Exod. xx. 4, 5.; and a curse is denounced against it in Deut. xxvii. 15. (3.) By prostration before, or adoration of such images, or of any thing else revered as a god, such as the sun, moon, and stars. (Exod. xx. 5. xxxiv. 14. Deut. iv. 19.) This prostration consisted in falling down on the knees, and at the same time touching the ground with the forehead. (4.) By having altars or groves dedicated to idols, or images thereof; all which the Mosaic law required to be utterly destroyed (Exod. xxxiv. 13. Deut. vii. 5. xii. 3.); and the Israelites were prohibited, by Deut. vii. 25, 26., from keeping, or even bringing into their houses, the gold and silver that had been upon any image, lest it should prove a snare, and lead them astray: because, having been once consecrated to an idol-god, (considering the then prevalent superstition as to the reality of such deities,) some idea of its sanctity, or some dread of it, might still have continued, and have thus been the means of propagating idolatry afresh among their children. (5.) By offering sacrifices to idols, which was expressly forbidden in Levit. xvii. 1–7., especially human victims, the sacrifices of which (it is well known) prevailed to a frightful extent. Parents immolated their offspring: this horrid practice was introduced among the Israelites, from the Canaanites, and is repeatedly reprobated by the prophets in the most pointed manner. The offering of human victims was prohibited in Levit. xviii. 21. compared with 2, 3, 24– 30. xx. 1–5. Deut. xii. 30. and xviii. 10. by othe l 6.) By eating of offerings made to idols, made by other €, * #. . { ..". feasts. Though no j aw was enacted against thus attending the festivals of their gods, it is evidently presupposed as unlawful in Exod. xxxiv. 15. Idolatry was punished by stoning the guilty individual. When a whole city became guilty of idolatry, it was considered in a state

pp. 1–312. 3 See pp. 77–81. supra,

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