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of Moses." However, Dr. Spencer said, "the Bath Kol was a Jewish fable;" and Prideaux, that "the Bath Kol was no such voice from heaven as they pretended, but a fantastical way of divination of their own invention." Connect. vol. ii. p. 256, edit. fol.
Now, supposing that there was at the time referred to a clap of thunder, which, according to John himself, was, in the opinion of many present, all that happened, how natural it was for John or other disciples to suppose it to be the Bath Kol, and first to imagine, and then to relate, the words of the divine voice!
The raising of Jairus's daughter, Matt. ix. 18, Jairus's Mark v. 22, Luke viii. 41, is comparatively well daughter. attested; for Mark, who here plainly brings additional information, agrees in the chief points with Matthew. It cannot be supposed to have been a concerted contrivance between Jairus and Jesus; for such a contrivance could only have had for its object to convince the multitude of the miraculous character of Jesus, and the scene would have been acted in public; whereas the multitude were excluded, and Jesus admitted only the father, the mother, and three of his own disciples-Peter, James, and John. Since Jairus applied to him in public, and professed his belief, he could not refuse to exert his supposed miraculous power, which, for ought he knew, might be sufficient even to raise the dead, since it had been found competent to cast out demons. Yet the privacy which he sought for the actual performance of the miracle, when his previous announcement to the multitude would seem to entitle them also to the means of conviction, at least by an immediate report from those present, indicates some latent distrust. The disciples, according to Mark and Luke, were even forbidden to tell any one what had taken place in the house, which secrecy is inexplicable, on the supposition of the miracle having been really performed; for as yet there was no disposition to make him a king, and
he had not been backward to do publicly numerous other miracles, of a more dubious sort to modern inquirers, but indubitable in the eyes of the Jewish multitude, viz., casting out demons, and healing the sick. If the object of the miracle were to prove his divine authority, why should such a decided miracle as raising a dead person be kept secret?
The point, however, on which the miracle depends is, that the child was really dead. Now, the three accounts before us state that Jesus said, “The maid is not dead, but sleepeth." So that if we believe Jesus himself literally,* the matter is explained at once; and the existence of the story as it now stands is accounted for thus: Matthew, or his informant, desirous to exhibit the affair as a miracle, by a slight variation converted the first message, that the child was dying, into an assertion that she was dead, ETEλEUTNσEV. Mark, from his additional means of information, gave the first original message correctly; but having also Matthew before him, and being himself well disposed to represent the event as miraculous, he inserted a second message, coming up fully to Matthew's statement, that the maid was dead. This point being established at the outset of the story, the rest was accommodated to a figurative interpretation of the words of Jesus, and with this view probably the addition, "they laughed him to scorn," was made. For the reality of this is in
* The speech attributed to Jesus by Mark, "Why make ye this ado, and weep? the damsel is not dead, but sleepeth," is inconsistent with a belief on his part that she was really dead; for, in this case, why should he choose to say, in so pointed a manner, what was not only incorrect, but must throw so much doubt upon the miracle? The quiet consciousness that the words will be understood finally in a figurative sense, seems to belong rather to the narrator who has his readers in view, than to Jesus, who would probably have regard to the impression produced upon his hearers. But the objection does not apply, if he be supposed to mean what he said literally.
consistent with the opinion which the people of Galilee had of Jesus as a prophet, and which was shared by Jairus and his household, as is seen by their sending for him. With respect to the recovery of the maiden, Matthew merely says, "he took her by the hand, and the maid arose:" Mark says, "straightway she arose, and walked," which might be one of his frequent exaggerations.
Leaving aside the question of the Evangelists' accuracy, the story, to have any pretension to truth, must have come from one of these six-Peter, James, John, Jairus, his wife, or his daughter; and how can it be shewn that each of these was incapable of adding such variations as were required to make the story miraculous? And it cannot be doubted that, if any one of these had issued it, the story would have appeared sufficiently authentic to the majority of the church.
But, after all, the most simple conclusion may be this: Jesus commanded secrecy to those who were with him in the chamber; he was obeyed, and consequently no one else knew exactly what took place there; but, as Matthew says, "a report went abroad into all that land," and that report is the story which we now have.
Another account of raising a dead person, viz., viz., the widow's son at Nain, is related by Luke only, at Nain. vii. 11-15. He places it the day after the cure of the centurion's servant (or son) at Capernaum. Now, Matthew and John, who have related this cure, say nothing concerning the widow's son. Luke's motive for inserting the story seems to be the same as for inserting verse 21, viz., to make it appear that John's disciples had ocular demonstration of the truth of the message they were to carry to him. In Matthew's account the mode of expression might be taken to imply this, for he makes Jesus say, in answer to the question of John's disciples, "Art
thou he that should come, or do we look for another?". "Go and shew John again, anayyaλate Iwavy, the things which ye do hear and see: (the present tense, à axovetɛ xAI BAETTETE :) the blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the Gospel preached to them." Luke copies nearly all Matthew's account of this discourse concerning John, and adds, ver. 21, “And in that same hour he cured many of their infirmities, and plagues, and of evil spirits, and unto many that were blind he gave sight." All this mass of miracles, not noticed elsewhere, was plainly done, or said by Luke to be done, in order to make the words in Matthew " which ye hear and see" literally true. Now, the raising of the dead at Nain, which Luke makes to be done also within the knowledge of John's disciples, completes the list of miracles mentioned in the message, and has therefore the appearance of being inserted for that purpose. It seemed the more necessary, because Matthew had not given any account of raising the dead which could warrant such a message; for although he, perhaps, had in his mind his own story of Jairus's daughter, yet Mark had prevented subsequent writers from citing this for the purpose, by saying that the disciples were commanded to tell no man of it. And it has been shewn to be highly probable that Luke had both Matthew's and Mark's Gospels before him.
The obvious objection to the reality of this miracle is the little notice taken of it. There are only three stories of raising the dead by Jesus, and this resurrection at Nain was better worth publishing than that of Jairus's daughter, since it occurred in the open street, and the death was less doubtful. Matthew and Mark could not have forgotten or wilfully suppressed it, and consequently did not know of it.
John alone relates the raising of Lazarus, which, if his account were true, was the most splendid and public of all the miracles. For, according to him, it was done before friends and enemies, without any of the usual prohibitions to tell of it: many came to see Lazarus at the supper at Bethany, and the people bare record of it when Jesus entered publicly into Jerusalem.
But, notwithstanding all this, neither Matthew, Mark, nor Luke, appear to have had any knowledge of the affair; for not only are they silent concerning it, but their accounts do not easily admit of its introduction. John puts the supper, at which Lazarus sat after his resurrection, one day before the public entry into Jerusalem. But Matthew, as well as Mark and Luke, makes it appear that Jesus made his entry into Jerusalem on coming direct from Jericho, a distance of about twenty miles; and that after this he took up his abode at Bethany. John's story of Lazarus requires, therefore, another previous abode at Bethany, which breaks in violently upon the order of events in Matthew, whose narrative seems to exclude the possibility of Jesus having already resided for some time so near to Jerusalem as fifteen furlongs. See Matt. xix. 1; xx. 18, 29; xxi. 1.
The supper at Bethany, also, is related by Matthew long after the entrance, although he is not precise as to the date. xxvi. 6.
This supper is proved to be the same as the one at which John says Lazarus was present, by the alabaster box of ointment, and the speech of Judas for the poor. Yet Matthew and Mark seem quite ignorant of that which John says attracted the Jews, the presence of the revived Lazarus.
The story of Lazarus seems again to be forced upon the attention of the first three Evangelists, when they relate the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, and the conduct