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ance of this doctrine came to be received from a quarter so odious and unpopular. How was it, that a tenet, which philosophy had in vain attempted to plant as an active principle in the mind, and which, by appealing to the same pride and the same passions, it had endeavoured to establish with the acuteness of its most subtle, and the exquisite elegance of its most polished writers, now, that it had been almost rooted out by the more successful doctrines of the later Epicureanism, on the mere dogmatic assertion, the ipse dixit, of these rambling Jews, became the deliberate creed of multitudes ? How did Peter and Paul thus put to shame Socrates and Plato ? In Athens itself, this rude and unpolished orator not merely obtains a hearing, but makes

proselytes. If the mind of man were so prone to this belief, why was it obviously losing rather than gaining ground? If the acceptability secured the reception of the doctrine, how was this the period, and these obscure individuals the teachers, who first governed the human mind by the inculcation of such notions, so as to convince men by thousands, and retain them in the obedience implied in their belief? Those writers, who, like Chubb and Bolingbroke, have pretended to detect a discrepancy between the doctrines of the primitive apostles and Paul, have never, I believe, asserted the resurrection to be one of these adscititious tenets. Indeed without the resurrection, Christianity is no religion at all. Neither the truth itself therefore, nor the manner of announcing it, was invented or first adopted by the enlightened scholar of Gamaliel. But where did the others learn it? From their master? But clearly the fact on which the whole doctrine rested, as I have before shewn, was not believed by the apostles during the life-time of Christ. Did then this truth, perhaps I should say the mode of inculcating it successfully, after having eluded the grasp of the sages in the Lyceum, or the schools of Alexandria, suddenly burst on these fishermen, as they were dragging their nets by the lake of Gennesareth, or the publican in the receipt of custom, or rather on the assemblage of such men, when they were lamenting their murdered teacher, and trembling for their own lives ? Infidelity has been accustomed to trace this doctrine in a strange circle. The Jews, it is said, either received it from their Platonizing brethren in Alexandria, or drew it, during the captivity, from the same fountain with Plato and Pythagoras, the oriental theology. Jesus and his apostles merely adopted the current belief of their country, and promulgated it with success among the Greeks and other heathens. Thus then, a doctrine which either with its original inventors, or its earlier teachers, was ineffective, and comparatively uninfluential, from the suffrages of a few despised and odious Jews suddenly became the attractive article of a creed, which convinced the reason, and subjugated the conscience of incalculable multitudes. For, III. however the doctrine itself might account for its being received speculatively, we have still to explain its practical triumph over the depraved and ungodly will. The resurrection of the Christian was a resurrection perhaps to eternal life, perhaps to eternal death. Human responsibility was inse

parable from human immortality. It is appointed unto men once to die, and after that the judgment. It was no certain and secure paradise, rich with all the luxuries, and dependant on the unalterable fatalism of the Mahometan: it was not an aristocratic Elysium of the brave and mighty;

"Ινα περ ποδώκε 'Αχιλλέα,

Τυδείδην τε, φασί, Διομήδεα. It was attained, though purchased by the blood of Christ, by faithful, diligent, and incessant service on the part of man. I will assert further, it was assured by no sensible revelation of personal election; no external rite secured it, no internal inspiration ratified it. Some did fall

away,

all were in danger of falling. It was a hope, but no more than a hope in the best ; was controlled and subdued even in the apostles themselves by the consciousness of human infirmity, and a profound sense of the magnitude of the temptations by which they were environed. It is not sufficient to prove that the rewards of the new religion were attractive; were the means of attaining these rewards equally so ? The

it

doctrine of a future state, which should offer a compromise for the strict fulfilment of the moral duties, would find, no doubt, ready acceptance. Indulge the pride of the intellect, without controlling the passions of the heart, and proselytes will crowd the temple. But the immortality of the soul, as taught by the apostles, was too unaccommodating; too much encumbered with limitations ; jarred too much with other propensities of our nature; required too severe and too long a discipline: if it offered remission of sins for the past, it permitted no latitude for the future. The sacrifice was immediate and certain, the reward remote and contingent. But if the apostles, themselves designing men, foresaw or found by experience the extensive influence of this article in their creed, why did they load it with the demand of a purity, a disinterestedness, an humility, a charity, which while it was the most difficult test of sincerity, was neither attractive in itself, nor easily ascertained by their teachers. If authority over the minds of their followers was their object, a pharisaic ceremonial,

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