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the customs and manners of that time, whether Jewish, Grecian, or Roman, that are here referred to; fourthly, the places here spoken of; and, fifthly, the extraordinary and miraculous events recorded.

CHAP. II.

What is written in the history of the Acts of the

ordinary occurrences of that time, and of the great persons therein named, confirmed from other authors.

FIRST, I shall compare what is here said of the ordinary occurrences of the time, and of the great personages named, with what is reported in other authors. The time we are speaking of is from the nineteenth of the reign of Tiberius to the ninth of the reign of Nero, from the 3982d year of the world to the 4012th, from the 785th of the building of Rome to the 815th, from the 33d of the vulgar Christian era to the 63d.

In this time were four Roman emperors, who reigned successively, Tiberius, Caius, Claudius, and Nero. There is no mention made of any of these by name in the Acts of the Apostles excepting Claudius Cæsar a. The Cæsar to whom St. Paul appealed b was Nero. During the first seven years of this period Judæa was a Roman province, and had a governor among them sent by the Romans : then it was made a kingdom again, and subject to Herod Agrippad: three years after, upon the death of Agrippa, it was turned into a province again,

a Acts xi. 28. b Acts xxv. II.

· Jos. Antiq. 1. 18. c. 5. §. 2. et c. 7. §. 10. et l. 19. C. 2. §. 5. pr. et c. 5. §. 1.

Antiq. I. 19. c. 5. §. 1. et de Bel. I. 2. C. II. §. 5.

Antiq. I. 19. c. 8. §. 2. et c. 9. §. 2. et de Bell. I. 2. c. 11. $. 6. Tacit. Hist. 5. 9.

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and of the number of governors sent thither were both Felix and Festus : that our Saviour was crucified under the government of Pontius Pilate Tacitus is witness f. And although he continued governor some years after, there was no occasion to make mention of him in the history of the Acts. The first person who is there spoken of as invested with supreme authority over the Jewish nation is Herod the king, that is, Agrippa, grandson of Herod the Great by his son Aristobulus, who was made king of Judæa, Samaria, and Cæsarea, by Claudius Cæsar 8. It is said of him in the book of Acts, that being at Cæsarea, upon a set day, he, arrayed in royal apparel, sat upon his throne, and made an oration to them. And the people gave a shout, saying, It is the voice of a god, and not of a man. And immediately the angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory: and he was eaten of worms, and gave up the ghosth. The account which Josephus gives us of this king's death agrees most remarkably herewith. He relates of him, “ that he went to Cæsarea, and that there,

upon a feast day, (which had been instituted in “ honour of Cæsar, and to which feast came a great “ concourse of his nobles and principal officers,) he “ went to the theatre, arrayed with a most splendid “ vestment, made all of silver; that his flatterers

gave a shout from several parts of the surrounding “ crowd, calling him God, and praying him to be

propitious to them: that he was so far from re“ buking, that he indeed received this impious flattery: and that immediately before he left the as“ sembly, he was smitten with most exquisite pain “ in his bowels, which, continuing five days, finished “ his life.” It is a thing, I doubt not, must occur to most readers, and therefore scarce deserves the remarking, that it is usual for those who are eaten of worms, to be attacked with a most exquisite pain in their bowels. Thus was it with Antiochus Epiphanes; A pain of the bowels, that was remediless, came upon him, and sore torments of the inner parts k, and soon after it is related of him, that worms rose up out of his body! Thus also was it with Herod the Great, who was this king's grandfather. Josephus, in describing his distemper, says, " that he had ulcers and severe pains in his bowels :" and a little after, “ that he bred worms m.” The same was the case of the emperor Maximianus Galerius : for though Eusebius expresses not the pain, yet such is his description of the disease as evidently shews he must have been full of torture in his bowels n. It has been made a question, (and what is there so plain that some learned men will not dispute?) whether the Herod mentioned in the twelfth chapter of the Acts, and the Agrippa of Josephus, were the same person, because of the difference of

| Annal. 1. 15. 44. & Antiq. 1. 39. c. 8. §. 2. prope fin. 1 Acts xii, 19, 21, 22, 23.

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i Antiq. I. 19. c. 8. §. 2. O oñuos énepáver Oecī pwrn, Acts xii. 22. Ευθύς δε οι κόλακες τας άλλος άλλοθεν φωνάς ανεβόων, Θεόν spor ayopetortes. Jos. loco citato.

2 Maccab. ix. 5. 1 2 Maccab. ix. 9.

Antiq. I. 17. c. 6. §. 5. pr. et de Bell. 1. 1. c. 33. §. 5.

'Αθρόα μεν γαρ περί τα μέσα των απορρήτων του σώματος, απόστασις γίγνεται αυτό είθ' έλκος εν βάθει συριγγώδες, και τούτων ανίατος νομή κατά των ενδοτάτω σπλάγχνων αφ' ών άλεκτόν τι πλήθος σκωλήκων βρύειν. Hist. 1. 8. c. 16. et Vit. Con. 1. 1. c. 57.

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names o? but certainly, when the time and place of reigning, and circumstances of death, so exactly agree, the difference of name is of small importance, especially when it was no uncommon thing among the Jews to have two names : and it is no unreasonable thing to suppose that Agrippa, if he had not the name of Herod before, should take it upon him, when he was put in possession of all the dominions of his grandfather Herod the Great P, whose grandeur and munificence he very much affected. Archelaus, who succeeded his father Herod in part only of his dominions, seems to have taken upon himself the same name : for he is expressly called Herod by Dio 9. The Syriac translation of the New Testament, which is very ancient, and approaches near to the times of the apostles themselves", puts this matter out of all doubt: for there the reading of Acts xii. 1. is thus; Herod the king, who is surnamed Agrippa : and in this reading all the MS. copies of that translation agree. I may add, that in the opinion of several learned men, well skilled in affairs of this nature, there are coins of this king now extant bearing the name of Herod S. Josephus, who wrote his history for the use of foreigners, very properly mentions him always by his Roman name,

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Particularly by Father Harduin. p Jos. de Bell. I. 2. C. II. Ģ. 5.

? L. 55. p. 567. And it is the opinion of Noldius, that Agrippa junior, the son of this king, was also called Herod, from a passage in the Talmud Sanhed. cap. Chelech. Vid. Hist. Idum. P. 390.

r Vid. Father Simon's Crit. t. 2. c. 13.

s Such as Spanheim, Cellarius, and Basnage. Vid. Cell. Dissert. Acad. p. 219. et Basn. Ann. p. 540.

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