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An Exposition

[An intimate acquaintance with the Holy Scriptures is a secure haven, and an impregnable bulwark, and an immovable tower, and imperishable glory, and impenetrable armour, and unfading joy, and perpetual delight, and whatever other excellence can be uttered.]


J. Collord, Printer.


ICONIUM, the chief city of Lycaonia, in Asia Minor. An assault being meditated at the place by the unbelieving Jews and Gentiles upon the Apostles Paul and Barnabas, who, by preaching in the synagogue, had converted many Jews and Greeks, they fled to Lystra; where the designs of their enemies were put in execution, and St. Paul miraculously escaped with his life, Acts xiv. The church planted at this place by St. Paul continued to flourish, until, by the persecutions of the Saracens, and afterward of the Seljukian Turks, who made it the capital of one of their sultanies, it was nearly extinguished. But some Christians of the Greek and Armenian churches, with a Greek archbishop, are yet found in the suburbs of this city, who are not permitted to reside within the walls. Iconium is now called Cogni, and is still a considerable city; being the capital of the extensive province of Caramania, as it was formerly of Lycaonia, and the seat of a Turkish beglerberg, or viceroy. It is the place of chief strength and importance in the central parts of Asiatic Turkey, being surrounded by a strong wall of four miles in circumference; but, as is the case with most eastern cities, much of the enclosed space is waste. It is situated about a hundred and twenty miles inland from the Mediterranean, on the lake Trogilis. Mr. Kinneir says, Iconium, the capital of Lycaonia, is mentioned by Xenophon, and afterward by Cicero and Strabo; but does not appear to have been a place of any consideration until after the taking of Nice by the crusaders in 1099, when the Seljukian sultans of Roum chose it as their residence. These sultans rebuilt the walls, and embellished the city: they were, however, expelled in 1189 by Frederic Barbarossa, who took it by assault; but after his death they reëntered their capital, where they reigned in splendour till the irruption of Tchengis Khan, and his grandson, Holukow, who broke the power of the Seljukians. Iconium, under the name of Cogni, or Konia, has been included in the dominions of the grand seignior ever since the time of Bajazet, who finally extirpated the Ameers of Caramania. The modern city has an imposing appearance from the number and size of its mosques, colleges, and other public buildings; but these stately edifices are crumbling into ruins, while the houses of the inhabitants consist of a mixture of small huts built of sun-dried bricks, and wretched hovels thatched with reeds. The city, according to the same authority, contains about eighty thousand inhabitants, principally Turks, with only a small proportion of Christians. It is represented as enjoying a fine climate, and pleasantly situated among gardens and meadows; while it is nearly surrounded, at some distance, with mountains which rise to the regions of perpetual snow. It was formerly the capital of an extensive government, and the seat of a powerful pasha, who maintained a military force competent to the preservation of peace and order, and the defence of his territories. But it has now dwindled into insignificance, and exhibits upon the whole a mournful scene of desolation and decay.

ICONOCLASTES, image breakers; or Iconomachi, image opposers, were names given to those who rejected the use of images in churches, and, on certain occasions, vented their zeal in destroying them. The great opposition to images began under Bardanes, a Greek emperor, in the beginning of the eighth century; and was revived again, a few years after, under Leo, the Isaurian, who issued an edict against image worship, which occasioned a civil war in the islands of the Archipelago, and afterward in Italy; the Roman pontiffs and Greek councils alternately supporting it. At length images were rejected by the Greek church, which however retains pictures in churches, though her members do not worship them; but the Latin church, more corrupt, not only retained images, but made them the medium, if not the object, of their worship, and are therefore Iconoduli, or Iconolatræ, image worshippers.

IDDO, a prophet of the kingdom of Judah, who wrote the actions of Rehoboam’s and 476Abijah’s reigns, 2 Chron. xii, 15. It seems by 2 Chron. xiii, 22, that he had entitled his work, Midrasch, or, “Inquiries.” We know nothing particularly concerning the life of this prophet. It is probable that he likewise wrote some prophecies against Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, 2 Chron. ix, 29, wherein part of Solomon’s life was included. Josephus, and many others after him, are of opinion that it was Iddo who was sent to Jeroboam, while he was at Bethel, and was there dedicating an altar to the golden calves; and that it was he who was killed by a lion, 1 Kings xiii.

IDOLATRY, from edatea, composed of ed, image, and atee, to serve, the worship and adoration of false gods; or the giving those honours to creatures, or the works of man’s hands, which are only due to God. Several have written of the origin and causes of idolatry: among the rest, Vossius, Selden, Godwyn, Tenison, and Faber; but it is still a doubt who was the first author of it. It is generally allowed, however, that it had not its beginning till after the deluge; and many are of opinion, that Belus, who is supposed to be the same with Nimrod, was the first man that was deified. But whether they had not paid divine honours to the heavenly bodies before that time, cannot be determined; our acquaintance with those remote times being extremely slender. The first mention we find made of idolatry is where Rachel is said to have taken the idols of her father; for though the meaning of the Hebrew word , be disputed, yet it is pretty evident they were idols. Laban calls them his gods, and Jacob calls them strange gods, and looks on them as abominations. The original idolatry by image worship is by many attributed to the age of Eber, B. C. 2247, about a hundred and one years after the deluge, according to the Hebrew chronology; four hundred and one years according to the Samaritan; and five hundred and thirty-one years according to the Septuagint; though most of the fathers place it no higher than that of Serug; which seems to be the more probable opinion, considering that for the first hundred and thirty-four years of Eber’s life all mankind dwelt in a body together; during which time it is not reasonable to suppose that idolatry broke in upon them; then some time must be allowed after the dispersion of the several nations, which were but small at the beginning, to increase and settle themselves; so that if idolatry was introduced in Eber’s time, it must have been toward the end of his life, and could not well have prevailed so universally, and with that obstinacy which some authors have imagined. Terah, the father of Abraham, who lived at Ur, in Chaldea, about B. C. 2000, was unquestionably an idolater; for he is expressly said in Scripture to have served other gods. The authors of the Universal History think, that the origin and progress of idolatry are plainly pointed out to us in the account which Moses gives of Laban’s and Jacob’s parting, Gen. xxxi, 44, &c. From the custom once introduced of erecting monuments in memory of any solemn covenants, the transition was easy into the notion, that some deity took its residence in them, in order to punish the first aggressors; and this might be soon improved by an ignorant and degenerate world, till not only birds, beasts, stocks, and stones, but sun, moon, and stars, were called into the same office; though used, perhaps, at first, by the designing part of mankind, as scare-crows, to overawe the ignorant.

Sanchoniathon, who wrote his “Phenician Antiquities,” apparently with a view to apologize for idolatry, traces its origin to the descendants of Cain, the elder branch, who began with the worship of the sun, and afterward added a variety of other methods of idolatrous worship: proceeding to deify the several parts of nature, and men after their death; and even to consecrate the plants shooting out of the earth, which the first men judged to be gods, and worshipped as those that sustained the lives of themselves and of their posterity. The Chaldean priests, in process of time, being by their situation early addicted to celestial observations, instead of conceiving as they ought to have done concerning the omnipotence of the Creator and Mover of the heavenly bodies, fell into the impious error of esteeming them as gods, and the immediate governors of the world, in subordination, however, to the Deity, who was invisible except by his works, and the effects of his power. Concluding that God created the stars and great luminaries for the government of the world, partakers with himself and as his ministers, they thought it but just and natural that they should be honoured and extolled, and that it was the will of God they should be magnified and worshipped. Accordingly, they erected temples, or sacella, to the stars, in which they sacrificed and bowed down before them, esteeming them as a kind of mediators between God and man. Impostors afterward arose, who gave out, that they had received express orders from God himself concerning the manner in which particular heavenly bodies should be represented, and the nature and ceremonies of the worship which was to be paid them. When they proceeded to worship wood, stone, or metal, formed and fashioned by their own hands, they were led to apprehend, that these images had been, in some way or other, animated or informed with a supernatural power by supernatural means; though Dr. Prideaux imagines, that, being at a loss to know how to address themselves to the planets when they were below the horizon, and invisible, they recurred to the use of images. But it will be sufficient to suppose, that they were persuaded that each star or planet was actuated by an intelligence; and that the virtues of the heavenly body were infused into the image that represented it. It is certain, that the sentient nature and divinity of the sun, moon, and stars, was strenuously asserted by the philosophers, particularly by Pythagoras and his followers, and by the Stoics, as well as believed by the common people, and 477was, indeed, the very foundation of the Pagan idolatry. The heavenly bodies were the first deities of all the idolatrous nations, were esteemed eternal, sovereign, and supreme; and distinguished by the title of the natural gods. Thus we find that the primary gods of the Heathens in general were Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Apollo, Mercury, Venus, and Diana; by which we can understand no other than the sun and moon, and the five greatest luminaries next to these. Plutarch expressly censures the Epicureans for asserting that the sun and moon, whom all men worshipped, are void of intelligence.

Sanchoniathon represents the most ancient nations, particularly the Phenicians and Egyptians, as acknowledging only the natural gods, the sun, moon, planets, and elements; and Plato declares it as his opinion, that the first Grecians likewise held these only to be gods, as many of the barbarians did in his time. Beside these natural gods, the Heathens believed that there were certain spirits who held a middle rank between the gods and men on earth, and carried on all intercourse between them; conveying the addresses of men to the gods, and the divine benefits to men. These spirits were called demons. From the imaginary office ascribed to them, they became the grand objects of the religious hopes and fears of the Pagans, of immediate dependence and divine worship. In the most learned nations, they did not so properly share, as engross, the public devotion. To these alone sacrifices were offered, while the celestial gods were worshipped only with a pure mind, or with hymns and praises. As to the nature of these demons, it has been generally believed, that they were spirits of a higher origin than the human race; and, in support of this opinion, it has been alleged, that the supreme deity of the Pagans is called the greatest demon; that demons are described as beings placed between the gods and men; and that demons are expressly distinguished from heroes, who were the departed souls of men. Some, however, have combatted this opinion, and maintained, on the contrary, that by demons, such as were the more immediate objects of the established worship among the ancient nations, particularly the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans, we are to understand beings of an earthly origin, or such departed human souls as were believed to become demons.

Although the Hindoo inhabitants of the East Indies deny the charge of idolatry, using the same description of arguments as are so inconclusively urged by superstitious Europeans in defence of image worship, it is still evident that the mass of the Hindoos are addicted to gross idolatry. The gods of Rome were even less numerous, certainly less whimsical and monstrous, than those at Benares. In Moore’s Hindoo Pantheon are given exact portraits of many scores of deities worshipped, with appropriate ceremonies, and under various forms and names, by different sects of that grossly superstitious race. Some of these portraits are of images colossal to a degree perhaps unequalled by any existing statues; others are exceedingly diminutive. Some are metallic casts, and some apparently extremely ancient, which exhibit every gradation of art from the rudest imaginable specimen, up to a very respectable portion of skill, so as to approach to elegance of form, and to ease and expression of attitude.

The principal causes which have been assigned for idolatry are, the indelible idea which every man has of God, and the evidence which he gives of it to himself; an inviolable attachment to the senses, and a habit of judging and deciding by them, and them only; the pride and vanity of the human mind, which is not satisfied with simple truth, but mingles and adulterates it with fables; men’s ignorance of antiquity, or of the first times, and the first men, of whom they had but very dark and confused knowledge by tradition, they having left no written monuments, or books; the ignorance and change of languages; the style of the oriental writings, which is figurative and poetical, and personifies every thing; the scruples and fears inspired by superstition; the flattery and fictions of poets; the false relations of travellers; the imaginations of painters and sculptors; a smattering of physics, that is, a slight acquaintance with natural bodies and appearances, and their causes; the establishment of colonies, and the invention of arts, mistaken by barbarous people; the artifices of priests; the pride of certain men, who affected to pass for gods; the love and gratitude borne by the people to certain of their great men and benefactors; and, finally, the historical events of the Scriptures ill understood. “One great spring and fountain of all idolatry,” says Sir William Jones, “was the veneration paid by men to the sun, or vast body of fire, which ‘looks from his sole dominion like the god of this world;’ and another, the immoderate respect shown to the memory of powerful or virtuous ancestors and warriors, of whom the sun and the moon were wildly supposed to be the parents.” But the Scriptural account of the matter refers the whole to wilful ignorance and a corrupt heart: “They did not like to retain God in their knowledge.” To this may be added, what indeed proceeds from the same sources, the disposition to convert religion into outward forms; the endeavour to render it more impressive upon the imagination through the senses; the substitution of sentiment for real religious principle; and the license which this gave to inventions of men, which in process of time became complicated and monstrous. That debasement of mind, and that alienation of the heart from God, and the gross immoralities and licentious practices which have ever accompanied idolatry, will sufficiently account for the severity with which it is denounced, both in the Old and New Testaments.

The veneration which the Papists pay to the Virgin Mary, and other saints and angels, and to the bread in the sacrament, the cross, relics, and images, affords ground for the Protestants to charge them with being idolaters, 478though they deny that they are so. It is evident that they worship these persons and things, and that they justify the worship, but deny the idolatry of it, by distinguishing subordinate from supreme worship. This distinction is justly thought by Protestants to be futile and nugatory, and certainly has no support from Holy Writ.

Under the government of Samuel, Saul, and David, there was little or no idolatry in Israel. Solomon was the first Hebrew king, who, in complaisance to his foreign wives, built temples and offered incense to strange gods. Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who succeeded him in the greater part of his dominions, set up golden calves at Dan and Bethel. Under the reign of Ahab, this disorder was at its height, occasioned by Jezebel, the wife of Ahab, who did all she could to destroy the worship of the true God, by driving away and persecuting his prophets. God, therefore, incensed at the sins and idolatry of the ten tribes, abandoned those tribes to the kings of Assyria and Chaldea, who transplanted them beyond the Euphrates, from whence they never returned. The people of Judah were no less corrupted. The prophets give an awful description of their idolatrous practices. They were punished after the same manner, though not so severely, as the ten tribes; being led into captivity several times, from which at last they returned, and were settled in the land of Judea, after which we hear no more of their idolatry. They have been, indeed, ever since that period, distinguished for their zeal against it. See Image.

IDUMÆA is properly the Greek name for the land of Edom, which lay to the south of Judea, and extended from the Dead Sea to the Elanitic Gulf of the Red Sea, where were the ports of Elath and Ezion-Gaber. But the Idumæa of the New Testament applies only to a small part adjoining Judea on the south, and including even a portion of that country; which was taken possession of by the Edomites, or Idumæans, while the land lay unoccupied during the Babylonish captivity. The capital of this country was Hebron, which had formerly been the metropolis of the tribe of Judah. These Idumæans were so reduced by the Maccabees, that, in order to retain their possessions, they consented to embrace Judaism; and their territory became incorporated with Judea; although, in the time of our Saviour, it still retained its former name of Idumæa, Mark iii, 8. The proper Idumæans, or those who remained in the ancient land of Edom, became in process of time mingled with the Ishmaelites; the two people thus blended, being, from Nabaioth, or Nabath, the son of Ishmael, termed Nabathæans; under which names they are frequently mentioned in history. See Edom.

ILLYRICUM, a province lying to the north and north-west of Macedonia, along the eastern coast of the Adriatic Gulf, or Gulf of Venice. It was distinguished into two parts: Liburnia to the north, where is now Croatia, and Dalmatia to the south, which still retains the same name, and to which, as St. Paul informs Timothy, Titus went, 2 Tim. iv, 10. St. Paul says, that he preached the Gospel from Jerusalem round about to Illyricum, Rom. xv, 19.

IMAGE, in a religious sense, is an artificial representation of some person or thing used as an object of adoration, and is synonymous with idol. Nothing can be more clear, full, and distinct, than the expressions of Scripture prohibiting the making and worship of images, Exod. xx, 4, 5; Deut. xvi, 22. No sin is so strongly and repeatedly condemned in the Old Testament as that of idolatry, to which the Jews, in the early part of their history, were much addicted, and for which they were constantly punished. St. Paul was greatly affected, when he saw that the city of Athens was “wholly given to idolatry,” Acts xvii, 16; and declared to the Athenians, that they ought not “to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device,” Acts xvii, 29. He condemns those who “changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like unto corruptible man, and to birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things,” Romans i, 23.

That the first Christians had no images, is evident from this circumstance,--that they were reproached by the Heathens, because they did not use them; and we find almost every ecclesiastical writer of the first four centuries arguing against the Gentile practice of image worship, from the plain declarations of Scripture, and from the pure and spiritual nature of God. The introduction of images into places of Christian worship, dates its origin soon after the times of Constantine the Great; but the earlier Christians reprobated every species of image worship in the strongest language. It is sometimes pretended by the Papists, that they do not worship the images, but God through the medium of images; or, that the worship which they pay to images is inferior to that which they pay to the Deity himself. These distinctions would be scarcely understood by the common people; and formerly an enlightened Heathen or Jew would probably have urged the same thing. The practice is in direct opposition to the second commandment, and notwithstanding every sophistical palliation, it has always led to a transfer of human trust from God to something else. Hence idolatry, in general, is condemned in Scripture; and all use of images in the worship of God, making or bowing to any likeness, is absolutely forbidden. See Iconoclastes and Idolatry.

IMMATERIALITY, abstraction from matter; or what we understand by pure spirit.

IMMORTAL. That which will endure to all eternity, as having in itself no principle of alteration or corruption. God is absolutely immortal,--he cannot die. Angels are immortal; but God, who made them, can terminate their being. Man is immortal in part, that is, in his spirit; but his body dies. Inferior creatures are not immortal; they die wholly. Thus the principle of immortality is 479differently communicated according to the will of him who can render any creature immortal, by prolonging its life; who can confer immortality on the body of man, together with his soul; and will do so at the resurrection. God only is absolutely perfect, and, therefore, absolutely immortal. See Soul.

IMPOSITION OF HANDS. An ecclesiastical action, by which, among Episcopalians, a bishop lays his hands on the head of a person, in ordination, confirmation, or in uttering a blessing. In Presbyterian churches, the imposition is by the hands of the presbytery. This practice is also frequently observed by the Independents and others at their ordinations, when all the ministers present place their hands on the head of him whom they are ordaining, while one of them prays for a blessing on him and his future labours. This they retain as an ancient practice, justified by the example of the Apostles, when no extraordinary gifts were conveyed. However, Christians are not agreed as to the propriety of this ceremony; nor do they all consider it as an essential part of ordination.

Imposition of hands was a Jewish ceremony, introduced, not by any divine authority, but by custom; it being the practice among that people, whenever they prayed to God for any person, to lay their hands on his head. Our Saviour observed the same custom, both when he conferred his blessing on children, and when he cured the sick. The Apostles likewise laid hands on those upon whom they bestowed the Holy Ghost, but it was a form accompanied by prayer, through which only the blessing was obtained. And the Apostles themselves sometimes underwent the imposition of hands afresh, when they entered upon any new design. In the ancient church, imposition of hands was practised on persons when they married; which custom the Abyssinians still observe. But this ceremony of laying on of hands is now restrained, by custom, chiefly to that imposition which is practised at the ordination of ministers.

[In the Methodist Episcopal Church, a bishop is constituted by the election of the general conference, and the laying on of the hands of three bishops, or at least of one bishop and two elders; unless it happen that, by death or otherwise, there be no bishop remaining in the church: in this case, the general conference is empowered to elect a bishop, and the elders, or any three of them appointed by the general conference for that purpose, to ordain him. An elder is constituted by the election of an annual conference, and the laying on of the hands of a bishop and of two or more elders. A deacon, by the election of an annual conference, and the laying on of the hands of a bishop.]


INCENSE. Thus; so called by the dealers of drugs in Egypt from thur, or thor, the name of a harbour in the north bay of the Red Sea, near Mount Sinai; thereby distinguishing it from the gum arabic, which is brought from Suez, another port in the Red Sea, not far from Cairo. It differs also in being more pellucid and white. It burns with a bright and strong flame, not easily extinguished. It was used in the temple service as an emblem of prayer, Psalm cxli, 2; Rev. viii, 3, 4. Authors give it, or the best sort of it, the epithets white, pure, pellucid; and so it may have some connection with a word, derived from the same root, signifying unstained, clear, and so applied to moral whiteness and purity, Psalm li, 7; Dan. xii, 10. This gum is said to distil from incisions made in the tree during the heat of summer. What the form of the tree is which yields it, we do not certainly know. Pliny one while says, it is like a pear tree; another, that it is like a mastic tree; then, that it is like the laurel; and, in fine, that it is a kind of turpentine tree. It has been said to grow only in the country of the Sabeans, a people in Arabia Felix; and Theophrastus and Pliny affirm that it is found in Arabia. Dioscorides, however, mentions an Indian as well as an Arabian frankincense. At the present day it is brought from the East Indies, but not of so good a quality as that from Arabia. The “sweet incense,” mentioned Exodus xxx, 7, and elsewhere, was a compound of several drugs, agreeably to the direction in the thirty-fourth verse. To offer incense was an office peculiar to the priests. They went twice a day into the holy place; namely, morning and evening, to burn incense there. Upon the great day of expiation, the high priest took incense, or perfume, pounded and ready for being put into the censer, and threw it upon the fire, the moment he went into the sanctuary. One reason of this was, that so the smoke which rose from the censer might prevent his looking with too much curiosity on the ark and mercy-seat. God threatened him with death upon failing to perform this ceremony, Lev. xvi, 13. Generally incense is to be considered as an emblem of the “prayers of the saints,” and is so used by the sacred writers.

INCEST, an unlawful conjunction of persons related within the degrees of kindred prohibited by God. In the beginning of the world, and again, long after the deluge, marriages between near relations were allowed. In the time of Abraham and Isaac, these marriages were permitted, and among the Persians much later: it is even said to be esteemed neither criminal nor ignominious among the remains of the old Persians at this day. Some authors believe that marriages between near relations were permitted, or, at least, tolerated, till the time of Moses, who first prohibited them among the Hebrews; and that among other people they were allowed even after him. Others hold the contrary; but it is hard to establish either of these opinions, for want of historical documents. The degrees of consanguinity within which marriage was prohibited are stated in Lev. xviii, 6–18. Most civilized people have looked on incests as abominable crimes. St. Paul, speaking of the incestuous man of Corinth, says, “It is reported commonly, that there is fornication among you, and such fornication 480as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father’s wife,” 1 Cor. v, 1. In order to preserve chastity in families, and between persons of different sexes, brought up and living together in a state of unreserved intimacy, it is necessary, by every method possible, to inculcate an abhorrence of incestuous conjunctions; which abhorrence can only be upholden by the absolute reprobation of all commerce of the sexes between near relations. Upon this principle, the marriage, as well as other cohabitations, of brothers and sisters, of lineal kindred, and of all who usually live in the same family, may be said to be forbidden by the law of nature. Restrictions which extend to remoter degrees of kindred than what this reason makes it necessary to prohibit from intermarriage, are founded in the authority of the positive law which ordains them, and can only be justified by their tendency to diffuse wealth, to connect families, or to promote some political advantage. The Levitical law, which is received in this country, and from which the rule of the Roman law differs very little, prohibits marriages between relations within three degrees of kindred; computing the generations, not from, but through, the common ancestor, and accounting affinity the same as consanguinity. The issue, however, of such marriages are not bastardized, unless the parents be divorced during their life time.

INCHANTMENTS. The law of God condemns inchantments and inchanters. Several terms are used in Scripture to denote inchantments: 1. , which signifies to mutter, to speak with a low voice, like magicians in their evocations and magical operations, Psalm lviii, 6. 2. , secrets, whence Moses speaks of the inchantments wrought by Pharaoh’s magicians. 3. , meaning those who practise juggling, legerdemain, tricks, and witchery, deluding people’s eyes and senses, 2 Chron. xxxiii, 6. 4. , which signifies, properly, to bind, assemble, associate, reunite: this occurs principally among those who charm serpents, who tame them, and make them gentle and sociable, which before were fierce, dangerous, and untractable, Deut. xviii, 11. We have examples of each of these ways of inchanting. It was common for magicians, sorcerers, and inchanters, to speak in a low voice, to whisper: they are called ventriloqui, because they spake, as one would suppose, from the bottom of their stomachs. They affected secrecy and mysterious ways, to conceal the vanity, folly, or infamy of their pernicious art. Their pretended magic often consisted in cunning tricks only, in sleight of hand, or some natural secrets, unknown to the ignorant. They affected obscurity and night, or would show their skill only before the uninformed or mean persons, and feared nothing so much as serious examinations, broad day-light, and the inspection of the intelligent. Respecting the inchantments practised by Pharaoh’s magicians, (see Exod. viii, 18, 19,) in order to imitate the miracles which were wrought by Moses, it must be said either that they were mere illusions, whereby they imposed on the spectators; or that, if they performed such miracles, and produced real changes of their rods, and the other things said to be performed by them, it must have been by a supernatural power which God had permitted Satan to give them, but the farther operation of which he afterward thought proper to prevent.

INDEPENDENTS, a denomination of Protestants in England and Holland, originally called Brownists. They derive their name from their maintaining that every particular congregation of Christians has, according to the New Testament, a full power of ecclesiastical jurisdiction over its members, independent of the authority of bishops, synods, presbyteries, or any other ecclesiastical assemblies. This denomination appeared in England in the year 1616. John Robinson, a Norfolk divine, who, being banished from his native country for non-conformity, afterward settled at Leyden, was considered as their founder and father. He possessed sincere piety, and no inconsiderable share of learning. Perceiving defects in the denomination of the Brownists, to which he belonged, he employed his zeal and diligence in correcting them and in new modelling the society. Though the Independents considered their own form of ecclesiastical government as of divine institution, and as originally introduced by the authority of the Apostles, nay, by the Apostles themselves; yet they did not always think it necessary to condemn other denominations, but often acknowledged that true religion might flourish in those communities which were under the jurisdiction of bishops, or the government of presbyteries. They approved, also, of a regular and educated ministry; nor is any person among them now permitted to speak in public before he has submitted to a proper examination of his capacity and talents, and has been approved of by the church to which he belonged. Their grounds of separation from the established church are different from those of other puritans. Many of the latter objected chiefly to certain rites, ceremonies, vestments, or forms, or to the government of the church; while yet they were disposed to arm the magistrate in support of the truth, and regretted and complained that they could not on these accounts conform to it. But Robinson and his companions not only rejected the appointments of the church on these heads, but denied its authority to enact them; contending, that every single congregation of Christians was a church, and independent of all legislation, save that of Christ; standing in need of no such provision or establishment as the state can bestow, and incapable of soliciting or receiving it. Hence they sought not to reform the church, but chose to dissent from it. They admitted there were many godly men in its communion, and that it was reformed from the grossest errors of the man of sin; but thought it still wanted some things essential to a true church of Christ; in particular, a power of choosing its own ministers, and a stricter discipline among its members. The creed of the Independents 481is uniformly Calvinistic, though with considerable shades of difference; and many in Scotland and Ireland have symbolized with the Sandemanians, or the Scottish Baptist denominations. The Congregationalist and Independent have been generally considered as convertible and synonymous: many, however, in the present day, prefer the former appellation, considering it desirable, in many cases, to unite, for mutual advice and support, more closely than the term independent seems to warrant.

INDULGENCES. In the primitive church very severe penalties were inflicted on those who had been guilty of any sins, whether public or private; and, in particular, they were forbidden to partake, for a certain time, of the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, or to hold any communion with the church. General rules were formed upon these subjects; but as it was often found expedient to make a discrimination in the degrees of punishment, according to the different circumstances of the offenders, and especially when they showed marks of contrition and repentance, power was given to bishops, by the council of Nice, to relax or remit those punishments as they should see reason. Every favour of this kind was called an indulgence or pardon. After the bishops had enjoyed this privilege for some centuries, and had begun to abuse it, the popes discovered that in their own hands it might be rendered a powerful instrument to promote both their ambition and their avarice. They could not but perceive that if they could persuade men they had the power of granting pardon for sin, it would give them a complete influence over their consciences; and if they could at the same time prevail upon them to purchase these pardons for money, it must add greatly to the wealth of the Roman see. In the eleventh century, therefore, when the dominion of the popes was rising to its zenith, and their power was almost irresistible, they took to themselves the exclusive prerogative of dispensing indulgences, which they carried to a most unwarrantable length. Instead of confining them, according to their originaloriginal institution, to the ordinary purposes of ecclesiastical discipline, they extended them to the punishment of the wicked in the world to come; instead of shortening the duration of earthly penance, they pretended that they could deliver men from the pains of purgatory; instead of allowing them gratuitously, and upon just grounds, to the penitent offender, they sold them in the most open and corrupt manner to the profligate and abandoned, who still continued in their vices. They did not scruple to call these indulgences a plenary remission of all sins, past, present, and future, and to offer them as a certain and immediate passport from the troubles of this world to the eternal joys of heaven. To give some sort of colour and support to this infamous traffic, they confidently asserted that the superabundant merits of Christ, and of his faithful servants, formed a fund of which the pope was the sole manager; and that he could, at his own discretion, dispense those merits, as the sure means of procuring pardon from God, in any proportions, for any species of wickedness, and to any person he pleased. The bare statement of this doctrine is a sufficient refutation of it; and it is scarcely necessary to add, that it has no foundation whatever in Scripture. It is an arrogant and impious usurpation of a power which belongs to God alone; and it has an obvious tendency to promote licentiousness and sin of every description, by holding out an easy and certain method of absolution. The popes derived very large sums from the sale of these indulgences; and it is well known that the gross abuses practised in granting them were among the immediate and principal causes of bringing about the reformation. They continue still to be sold at Rome, and are to be purchased by any who are weak enough to buy them. The sums required for indulgences were first published by Anthony Egane, a Franciscan friar, in 1673; and the original pamphlet was republished by Baron Maseres, in 1809, in his last volume of “Occasional Essays.”

INK. The ink of the ancients was not so fluid as ours. Demosthenes reproaches Æschines with labouring in the grinding of ink, as painters do in the grinding of their colours. The substance also found in an inkstand at Herculaneum, looks like a thick oil or paint, with which the manuscripts there have been written in a relievo visible in the letters, when you hold a leaf to the light in a horizontal direction. Such vitriolic ink as has been used on the old parchment manuscripts would have corroded the delicate leaves of the papyrus, as it has done the skins of the most ancient manuscripts of Virgil and Terence, in the Vatican library; the letters are sunk into the parchment, and some have eaten quite through it, in consequence of the corrosive acid of the vitriolic ink, with which they were written. The inkhorn is also mentioned in Scripture: “And one man among them was clothed with linen, with a writer’s inkhorn by his side,” Ezek. ix, 2. The eastern mode and apparatus for writing differs so materially from those with which we are conversant, that it is necessary particularly to describe them. D'Arvieux informs us that “the Arabs of the desert, when they want a favour of their emir, get his secretary to write an order agreeable to their desire, as if the favour were granted, this they carry to the prince, who, after having read it, sets his seal to it with ink, if he grants it; if not, he returns the petitioner his paper torn, and dismisses him. These papers are without date, and have only the emir’s flourish or cypher at the bottom, signifying the poor, the abject Mohammed, son of Turabeye.” Pococke says, that “they make the impression of their name with their seal, generally of cornelian, which they wear on their finger, and which is blacked when they have occasion to seal with it.” The custom of placing the inkhorn by the side, Olearius says, continues in the east to this day. Dr. Shaw informs us, that, among the Moors in Barbary, “the hojas, 482that is, the writers or secretaries, suspend their inkhorns in their girdles; a custom as old as the Prophet Ezekiel, ix, 2.” And in a note he adds, “that part of these inkhorns (if an instrument of brass may be so called) which passes between the girdle and the tunic, and holds their pens, is long and flat; but the vessel for the ink which rests upon the girdle is square, with a lid to clasp over it.” So Mr. Hanway: “Their writers carry their ink and pens about them in a case, which they put under their sash.”

INN. The inns or caravanserais of the east, in which travellers are accommodated, are not all alike, some being simply places of rest, by the side of a fountain, if possible, and at a proper distance on the road. Many of these places are nothing more than naked walls; others have an attendant, who subsists either by some charitable donation, or the benevolence of passengers; others are more considerable establishments, where families reside, and take care of them, and furnish the necessary provisions. “Caravanserais,” says Campbell, “were originally intended for, and are now pretty generally applied to, the accommodation of strangers and travellers, though, like every other good institution, sometimes perverted to the purposes of private emolument, or public job. They are built at proper distances through the roads of the Turkish dominions, and afford to the indigent or weary traveller an asylum from the inclemency of the weather, are in general built of the most solid and durable materials, have commonly one story above the ground floor, the lower of which is arched, and serves for warehouses to store goods, for lodgings, and for stables, while the upper is used merely for lodgings; beside which they are always accommodated with a fountain, and have cooks’ shops and other conveniences to supply the wants of lodgers. In Aleppo, the caravanserais are almost exclusively occupied by merchants, to whom they are, like other houses, rented.” “In all other Turkish provinces,” observes Antes, “particularly those in Asia, which are often thinly inhabited, travelling is subject to numberless inconveniences, since it is necessary not only to carry all sorts of provisions along with one, but even the very utensils to dress them in, beside a tent for shelter at night and in bad weather, as there are no inns, except here and there a caravanserai, where nothing but bare rooms, and those often very bad, and infested with all sorts of vermin, can be procured.” “There are no inns anywhere,” says Volney, “but the cities, and commonly the villages, have a large building called a kan or kervanserai, which serves as an asylum for all travellers. These houses of reception are always built without the precincts of towns, and consist of four wings round a square court, which serves by way of enclosure for the beasts of burden. The lodgings are cells, where you find nothing but bare walls, dust, and sometimes scorpions. The keeper of this kan gives the traveller the key and a mat, and he provides himself the rest; he must therefore carry with him his bed, his kitchen utensils, and even his provisions, for frequently not even bread is to be found in the villages. On this account the orientals contrive their equipage in the most simple and portable form. The baggage of a man who wishes to be completely provided, consists in a carpet, a mattress, a blanket, two sauce pans with lids contained within each other, two dishes, two plates, and a coffee pot, all of copper, well tinned, a small wooden box for salt and pepper, a round leathern table, which he suspends from the saddle of his horse, small leathern bottles or bags for oil, melted butter, water, and brandy, if the traveller be a Christian, a tinder box, a cup of cocoa nut, some rice, dried raisins, dates, Cyprus cheese, and, above all, coffee berries, with a roaster and wooden mortar to pound them.” The Scriptures use two words to express a caravanserai, in both instances translated inn: “There was no room for them in the inn,” ataµat, Luke ii, 7; the place of untying, that is, of beasts for rest. “And brought him to the inn,” ade, Luke x, 34, whose keeper is called in the next verse ade. This word properly signifies “a receptacle open to all comers.” “The serai or principal caravansary at Surat,” observes Forbes, “was much neglected. Most of the eastern cities contain one, at least, for the reception of strangers; smaller places, called choultries, are erected by charitable persons, or munificent princes, in forests, plains, and deserts, for the accommodation of travellers. Near them is generally a well, and a cistern for the cattle; a brahmin, or fakeer, often resides there to furnish the pilgrim with food, and the few necessaries he may stand in need of. In the deserts of Persia and Arabia, these buildings are invaluable; in those pathless plains, for many miles together, not a tree, a bush, nor even a blade of grass, is to be seen; all is one undulating mass of sand, like waves on the trackless ocean. In these ruthless wastes, where no rural village or cheerful hamlet, no inn or house of refreshment, is to be found, how noble is the charity that rears the hospitable roof, that plants the shady grove, and conducts the refreshing moisture into reservoirs!”

INSPIRATION, the conveying of certain extraordinary and supernatural notices or thoughts into the soul; or it denotes any supernatural influence of God upon the mind of a rational creature, whereby he is formed to a degree of intellectual improvement, to which he could not have attained in his present circumstances in a natural way. In the first and highest sense, the prophets, evangelists, and Apostles are said to have spoken and written by divine inspiration. This inspiration of the Old Testament Scriptures is so expressly attested by our Lord and his Apostles, that among those who receive them as a divine revelation the only question relates to the inspiration of the New Testament. On this subject it has been well observed:--

1. That the inspiration of the Apostles appears to have been necessary for the purposes of their mission; and, therefore, if we admit 483that Jesus came from God, and that he sent them forth to make disciples, we shall acknowledge that some degree of inspiration is highly probable. The first light in which the books of the New Testament lead us to consider the Apostles, is, as the historians of Jesus. After having been his companions during his ministry, they came forth to bear witness of him; and as the benefit of his religion was not to be confined to the age in which he or they lived, they left in the four Gospels a record of what he did and taught. Two of the four were written by the Apostles Matthew and John. St. Mark and St. Luke, whose names are prefixed to the other two, were probably of the seventy whom our Lord sent out in his life time; and we learn from the most ancient Christian historians, that the Gospel of St. Mark was revised by St. Peter, and the Gospel of St. Luke by St. Paul, and that both were afterward approved by St. John; so that all the four may be considered as transmitted to the church with the sanction of apostolical authority. Now, if we recollect the condition of the Apostles, and the nature of their history, we shall perceive that, even as historians, they stood in need of some measure of inspiration. Plato might feel himself at liberty to feign many things of his master Socrates, because it mattered little to the world whether the instruction that was conveyed to them proceeded from the one philosopher or from the other. But the servants of a divine teacher, who appeared as his witnesses, and professed to be the historians of his life, were bound by their office to give a true record. And their history was an imposition upon the world, if they did not declare exactly and literally what they had seen and heard. This was an office which required not only a love of the truth, but a memory more retentive and more accurate than it was possible for the Apostles to possess. To relate, at the distance of twenty years, long moral discourses, which were not originally written, and which were not attended with any striking circumstances that might imprint them upon the mind; to preserve a variety of parables, the beauty and significancy of which depended upon particular expressions; to record long and minute prophecies, where the alteration of a single phrase might have produced an inconsistency between the event and the prediction; and to give a particular detail of the intercourse which Jesus had with his friends and with his enemies;--all this is a work so very much above the capacity of unlearned men, that, had they attempted to execute it by their own natural powers, they must have fallen into such absurdities and contradictions as would have betrayed them to every discerning eye. It was therefore highly expedient, and even necessary, for the faith of future ages, that, beside those opportunities of information which the Apostles enjoyed, and that tried integrity which they possessed, their understanding and their memory should be assisted by a supernatural influence, which might prevent them from mistaking the meaning of what they had heard, which might restrain them from putting into the mouth of Jesus any words which he did not utter, or omitting what was important, and which might thus give us perfect security, that the Gospels are as faithful a copy as if Jesus himself had left in writing those sayings and those actions which he wished posterity to remember.

But we consider the Apostles in the lowest view, when we speak of them as barely the historians of their Master. In their epistles they assume a higher character, which renders inspiration still more necessary. All the benefit which they derived from the public and the private instructions of Jesus before his death had not so far opened their minds as to qualify them for receiving the whole counsel of God. And he who knows what is in man declares to them, the night on which he was betrayed, “I have yet many things to say unto you, but you cannot bear them now,” John xv, 12. The purpose of many of his parables, the full meaning even of some of his plain discourses, had not been attained by them. They had marvelled when he spake to them of earthly things. But many heavenly things of his kingdom had not been told them; and they who were destined to carry his religion to the ends of the earth themselves needed, at the times of their receiving this commission, that some one should instruct them in the doctrine of Christ. It is true that, after his resurrection, Jesus opened their understandings, and explained to them the Scriptures; and he continued upon earth forty days, speaking to them of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God. It appears, however, from the history which they have recorded in the book of Acts, that some farther teaching was necessary for them, Acts i. Immediately before our Lord ascended, their minds being still full of the expectation of a temporal kingdom, they say unto him, “Lord, wilt thou at this time restore the kingdom to Israel” It was not till some time after they received the gift of the Holy Ghost, that they understood that the Gospel had taken away the obligation to observe the ceremonies of the Mosaic law; and the action of St. Peter in baptizing Cornelius, a devout Heathen, gave offence to some of the Apostles and brethren in Judea when they first heard it, Acts xi. Yet, in their epistles, we find just notions of the spiritual nature of the religion of Jesus as a kingdom of righteousness, the subjects of which are to receive remission of sins, and sanctification through his blood, and just notions also of the extent of this religion as a dispensation the spiritual blessings of which are to be communicated to all, in every land, who receive it in faith and love. These notions appear to us to be the explication both of the ancient predictions, and of many particular expressions that occur in the discourses of our Lord. But it is manifest that they had not been acquired by the Apostles during the teaching of Jesus. They are so adverse to every thing which men educated in Jewish 484prejudices had learned and had hoped, that they could not be the fruit of their own reflections; and therefore they imply the teaching of that Spirit who gradually impressed them upon the mind, guiding the Apostles gently, as they were able to follow him, into all the truth connected with the salvation of mankind. As inspiration was necessary to give the minds of the Apostles possession of the system that is unfolded in their epistles, so many parts of that system are removed to such a distance from human discoveries, and are liable to such misapprehension, that unless we suppose a continued superintendence of the Spirit by whom it was taught, succeeding ages would not have a sufficient security that those who were employed to deliver it had not been guilty of gross mistakes in some most important doctrines.

Inspiration will appear still farther necessary, when we recollect that the writings of the Apostles contain several predictions of things to come. St. Paul foretels, in his epistles, the corruptions of the church of Rome, and many other circumstances which have taken place in the history of the Christian church; and the Revelation is a book of prophecy, of which part has been already fulfilled, while the rest will no doubt be explained by the events which are to arise in the course of Providence. But prophecy is a kind of writing which implies the highest degree of inspiration. When predictions, like those in Scripture, are particular and complicated, and the events are so remote and so contingent as to be out of the reach of human sagacity, it is plain that the writers of the predictions do not speak according to the measure of information which they had acquired by natural means, but are merely the instruments through which the Almighty communicates, in such measure and such language as he thinks fit, that knowledge of futurity which is denied to man. And although the full meaning of their own predictions was not understood by themselves, they will be acknowledged to be true prophets when the fulfilment comes to reflect light upon that language, which, for wise purposes, was made dark at the time of its being put into their mouth.

Thus the nature of the writings of the Apostles suggests the necessity of their having been inspired. They could not be accurate historians of the life of Jesus without divine inspiration, nor safe expounders of his doctrine, nor prophets of distant events.

2. Inspiration was promised by our Lord to his Apostles. It is not unfair reasoning to adduce promises contained in the Scriptures themselves, as proofs of their divine inspiration. It were, indeed, reasoning in a circle, to bring the testimony of the Scriptures in proof of the divine mission of Jesus. But that being established by sufficient evidence, and the books of the New Testament having been proved to be the authentic genuine records of the persons whose names they bear, we are warranted to argue, from the declarations contained in them, what is the measure of inspiration which Jesus was pleased to bestow upon his servants. He might have been a divine teacher, and they might have been his Apostles, although he had bestowed none at all. But his character gives us security that they possessed all that he promised. We read in the Gospels that Jesus ordained twelve that they should be with him, and that he might send them forth to preach, Mark iii, 14. And as this was the purpose for which they were first called, so it was the charge left them at his departure. “Go,” said he, “preach the Gospel to every creature: make disciples of all nations,” Mark xvi, 16; Matt. xxviii, 19. His constant familiar intercourse with them was intended to qualify them for the execution of this charge; and the promises made to them have a special reference to the office in which they were to be employed. When he sent them, during his life, to preach in the cities of Israel, he said, “But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak; for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you,” Matt. x, 19, 20. And when he spake to them in his prophecy of the destruction of Jerusalem, of the persecution which they were to endure after his death, he repeats the same promise: “For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist,” Luke xxi, 15. It is admitted that the words in both these passages refer properly to that assistance which the inexperience of the Apostles was to derive from the suggestions of the Spirit, when they should be called to defend their conduct and their cause before the tribunals of the magistrates. But the fulfilment of this promise was a pledge, both to the Apostles and to the world, that the measure of inspiration necessary for the more important purpose implied in their commission would not be withheld; and, accordingly, when that purpose came to be unfolded to the Apostles, the promise of the assistance of the Spirit was expressed in a manner which applies it to the extent of their commission. In the long affectionate discourse recorded by St. John, when our Lord took a solemn farewell of the disciples, after eating the last passover with them, he said, “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him. But ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. I have yet many things to say unto you, but you cannot bear them now. Howbeit, when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth; for he shall not speak of himself, but whatsoever he shall hear that shall he speak; and he will show you things to come,” John xiv, 16, 17, 26; 485xvi, 12, 13. Here are all the degrees of inspiration which we have seen to be necessary for the Apostles: the Spirit was to bring to their remembrance what they had heard; to guide them into the truth, which they were not then able to bear; and to show them things to come; and all this they were to derive, not from occasional illapses, but from the perpetual inhabitation of the Spirit. That this inspiration was vouchsafed to them, not for their own sakes, but in order to qualify them for the successful discharge of their office as the messengers of Christ, and the instructers of mankind, appears from several expressions of that prayer which immediately follows the discourse containing the promise of inspiration; particularly from these words: “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; that they all may be one, as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee; that they may be one in us; that the world may believe that thou hast sent me,” John xvii, 20, 21. In conformity to this prayer, so becoming him who was not merely the friend of the Apostles, but the light of the world, is that charge which he gives them immediately before his ascension: “Go ye, therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world,” Matt. xxviii, 19, 20; I am with you alway, not by my bodily presence; for immediately after he was taken out of their sight; but I am with you by the Holy Ghost, whom I am to send upon you not many days hence, and who is to abide with you for ever.

The promise of Jesus, then, implies, according to the plain construction of the words, that the Apostles, in executing their commission, were not to be left wholly to their natural powers, but were to be assisted by that illumination and direction of the Spirit which the nature of the commission required; and we may learn the sense which our Lord had of the importance and effect of this promise from one circumstance, that he never makes any distinction between his own words and those of his Apostles, but places the doctrines and commandments which they were to deliver upon a footing with those which he had spoken: “He that heareth you, heareth me; and he that despiseth you, despiseth me; and he that despiseth me, despiseth him that sent me,” Luke x, 16. These words plainly imply that Christians have no warrant to pay less regard to any thing contained in the epistles than to that which is contained in the Gospels; and teach us that every doctrine and precept clearly delivered by the Apostles comes to the Christian world with the same stamp of the divine authority as the words of Jesus, who spake in the name of him that sent him.

The Author of our religion having thus made the faith of the Christian world to hang upon the teaching of the Apostles, gave the most signal manifestation of the fulfilment of that promise which was to qualify them for their office, by the miraculous gifts with which they were endowed on the day of pentecost, and by the abundance of those gifts which the imposition of their hands was to diffuse through the church. One of the twelve, indeed, whose labours in preaching the Gospel were the most abundant and the most extensive, was not present at this manifestation; for St. Paul was not called to be an Apostle till after the day of pentecost. But it is very remarkable that the manner of his being called was expressly calculated to supply this deficiency. As he journeyed to Damascus, about noon, to bring the Christians who were there bound to Jerusalem, there shone from heaven a great light round about him. And he heard a voice, saying, “I am Jesus whom thou persecutest. And I have appeared unto thee for this purpose, to make thee a minister and a witness both of these things which thou hast seen, and of those things in the which I will appear unto thee; and now I send thee to the Gentiles to open their eyes,” Acts xxvi, 12–18. In reference to this manner of his being called, St. Paul generally inscribes his epistles with these words: “Paul, an Apostle of Jesus Christ, by the will” or “by the commandment of God;” and he explains very fully what he meant by the use of this expression, in the beginning of his Epistle to the Galatians, where he gives an account of his conversion: “Paul, an Apostle, not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead. I neither received the Gospel of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ. When it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace, to reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the Heathen: immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood, neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were Apostles before me; but I went into Arabia,” Gal. i, 1, 12, 15–17. All that we said of the necessity of inspiration, and of the import of the promise which Jesus made to the other Apostles, receives very great confirmation from this history of St. Paul, who, being called to be an Apostle after the ascension of Jesus, received the Gospel by immediate revelation from heaven, and was thus put upon a footing with the rest, both as to his designation, which did not proceed from the choice of man, and as to his qualifications, which were imparted, not by human instruction, but by the teaching of the Author of Christianity. The Lord Jesus who appeared to him might furnish St. Paul with the same advantages which the other Apostles had derived from his presence on earth, and might give him the same assurance of the inhabitation of the Spirit that the promises, which we have been considering, had imparted to those.

3. Inspiration was claimed by the Apostles; and their claim may be considered as the interpretation of the promise of their Master. We shall not find the claim to inspiration formally advanced in the Gospels. This omission 486has sometimes been stated by those superficial critics, whose prejudices serve to account for their haste, as an objection against the existence of inspiration. But if you attend to the reason of the omission, you will perceive that it is only an instance of that delicate propriety which pervades all the New Testament. The Gospels are the record of the great facts which vouch the truth of Christianity. These facts are to be received upon the testimony of men who had been eye-witnesses of them. The foundation of Christian faith being laid in an assent to these facts, it would have been preposterous to have introduced in support of them that influence of the Spirit which preserved the minds of the Apostles from error. For there can be no proof of the inspiration of the Apostles, unless the truth of the facts be previously admitted. The Apostles, therefore, bring forward the evidence of Christianity in its natural order, when they speak in the Gospels as the companions and eye-witnesses of Jesus, claiming that credit which is due to honest men who had the best opportunities of knowing what they declared. This is the language of St. John: “Many other signs did Jesus in the presence of his disciples. But these are written that ye may believe; and this is the disciple which testifieth these things,” John xx, 30, 31; xxi, 24. The Evangelist Luke appears to speak differently in the introduction to his Gospel, Luke i, 1–4; and opposite opinions have been entertained respecting the information conveyed by that introduction.

There is a difference of opinion, first, with regard to the time when St. Luke wrote his Gospel. It appears to some to be expressly intimated that he wrote after St. Matthew and St. Mark, because he speaks of other Gospels then in circulation; and it is generally understood that St. John wrote his after the other three. But the manner in which St. Luke speaks of these other Gospels does not seem to apply to those of St. Matthew and St. Mark. He calls them many, which implies that they were more than two, and which would confound these two canonical Gospels with imperfect accounts of our Lord’s life, which we know from ancient writers were early circulated, but were rejected after the four Gospels were published. It is hardly conceivable that St. Luke would have alluded to the two Gospels of St. Matthew and St. Mark without distinguishing them from other very inferior productions; and therefore it is probable that when he used this mode of expression, no accounts of our Lord’s life were then in existence but those inferior productions. There appears, also, to very sound critics, to be internal evidence that St. Luke wrote first. He is much more particular than the other evangelists in his report of our Lord’s birth, and of the meetings with his Apostles after his resurrection. They might think it unnecessary to introduce the same particulars into their Gospels after St. Luke. But if they wrote before him, the want of these particulars gives to their Gospels an appearance of imperfection which we cannot easily explain.

The other point suggested by this introduction, upon which there has been a difference of opinion, is, whether St. Luke, who was not an Apostle, wrote his Gospel from personal knowledge, attained by his being a companion of Jesus, or from the information of others. Our translation certainly favours the last opinion; and it is the more general opinion, defended by very able critics. Dr. Randolph, in the first volume of his works, which contains a history of our Saviour’s life, supports the first opinion, and suggests a punctuation of the verses, and an interpretation of one word, according to which that opinion may be defended. Read the second and third verses in connection: a adsa µ ap’ atpta a pta eµe t de µ, aat e s ae s a, tste Tefe, “Even as they who were eye-witnesses and ministers of the word from the beginning delivered them to us, it seemed good to me also, having accurately traced,” &c. By µ is understood the Christian world, who had received information, both oral and written, from those that had been atpta a pta, “eye-witnesses and ministers.” µ means St. Luke, who proposed to follow the example of those atpta in writing what he knew; and he describes his own knowledge by the word aat, which is more precise than the circumlocution, by which it is translated, “having had understanding of all things.” Perfect understanding may be derived from various sources; but aa properly means, “I go along with as a companion, and derive knowledge from my own observation.” And it is remarkable that the word is used in this very sense by the Jewish historian, Josephus, who published his history not many years after St. Luke wrote, and who, in his introduction, represents himself as worthy of credit, because he had not merely inquired of those who knew, but ata t es, which he explains by this expression: µ at a, and to state in the third verse that he, e d’ atpt eµe, an actor in many things, and an eye-witness of most. If this interpretation is not approved of, then, according to the sense of those verses which is most commonly adopted, St. Luke will be understood to give in the second verse an account of that ground upon which the knowledge of the Christian world with regard to these things rested, the reports of the “eye-witnesses and ministers,” having collected and collated these reports, and employed the most careful and minute investigation, he had resolved to write an account of the life of Jesus. Here he does not claim inspiration: he does not even say that he was an eye-witness. But he says that, having, like others, heard the report of eye-witnesses, he had accurately examined the truth of what they said, and presented to the Christian world the fruit of his researches.

The foundation is still the same as in St. John’s Gospel, the report of those in whose 487presence Jesus did and said what is recorded. To this report is added, (1.) The investigation of St. Luke, a contemporary of the Apostles, the companion of St. Paul in a great part of his journeyings, and honoured by him with this title, “Luke, the beloved physician,” Col. iv, 14. (2.) The approbation of St. Paul, who is said, by the earliest Christian writers, to have revised this Gospel written by his companion, so that it came abroad with apostolical authority. (3.) The universal consent of the Christian church, which, although jealous of the books that were then published, and rejecting many that claimed the sanction of the Apostles, has uniformly, from the earliest times, put the Gospel of St. Luke upon a footing with those of St. Matthew and St. Mark: a clear demonstration that they who had access to the best information knew that it had been revised by an Apostle.

As, then, the authors of the Gospels appear under the character of eye-witnesses, attesting what they had seen, there would have been an impropriety in their resting the evidence of the essential facts of Christianity upon inspiration. But after the respect which their character and their conduct procured to their testimony, and the visible confirmation which it received from heaven, had established the faith of a part of the world, a belief of their inspiration became necessary. They might have been credible witnesses of facts, although they had not been distinguished from other men. But they were not qualified to execute the office of Apostles without being inspired. And therefore, as soon as the circumstances of the church required the execution of that office, the claim which had been conveyed to them by the promise of their Master, and which is implied in the apostolical character, appears in their writings. They instantly exercised the authority derived to them from Jesus, by planting ministers in the cities where they had preached the Gospel, by setting every thing pertaining to these Christian societies in order, by controlling the exercise of those miraculous gifts which they had imparted, and by correcting the abuses which happened even in their time. But they demanded from all who had received the faith of Christ submission to the doctrines and commandments of his Apostles, as the inspired messengers of Heaven. “But God hath revealed it,” not them, as our translators have supplied the accusative, “revealed the wisdom of God, the dispensation of the Gospel unto us by his Spirit; for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is of God; that we might know the things which are freely given us of God; which things, also, we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth,” 1 Cor. ii, 10, 12, 13. “If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord,” 1 Cor. xiv, 37; that is, Let no eminence of spiritual gifts be set up in opposition to the authority of the Apostles, or as implying any dispensation from submitting to it. “For this cause, also, thank we God without ceasing, because when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but, as it is in truth, the word of God,” 1 Thess. ii, 13. St. Peter, speaking of the epistles of St. Paul, says, “Even as our beloved brother Paul, also, according to the wisdom given unto him, hath written unto you,” 2 Peter iii, 15. And St. John makes the same claim of inspiration for the other Apostles, as well as for himself: “We are of God: he that knoweth God, heareth us: he that is not of God, heareth not us,” 1 John iv, 6.

The claim to inspiration is clearly made by the Apostles in those passages where they place their own writings upon the same footing with the books of the Old Testament; for St. Paul, speaking of the ea µµata, “Holy Scriptures,” a common expression among the Jews, in which Timothy had been instructed from his childhood, says, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God,” 2 Tim. iii, 16. St. Peter, speaking of the ancient prophets, says, “The Spirit of Christ was in them,” 1 Peter i, 11; and, “The prophecy came not in old time by the will of man; but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost,” 2 Peter i, 21. And the quotations of our Lord and his Apostles from the books of the Old Testament are often introduced with an expression in which their inspiration is directly asserted: “Well spake the Holy Ghost by Esaias;” “By the mouth of thy servant David thou hast said,” &c, Acts i, 16; iv, 25; xxviii, 25. But with this uniform testimony to that inspiration of the Jewish Scriptures, which was universally believed among that people, we are to conjoin this circumstance, that St. Paul and St. Peter in different places rank their own writings with the books of the Old Testament. St. Paul commands that his epistles should be read in the churches, where none but those books which the Jews believed to be inspired were ever read, Col. iv, 16. He says that Christians “are built upon the foundationfoundation of the Apostles and prophets,” p t eµe t p a ft, Eph. ii, 20: a conjunction which would have been highly improper, if the former had not been inspired as well as the latter; and St. Peter charges the Christians to “be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the Apostles,” 2 Peter iii, 2. The nature of the book of Revelation led the Apostle John to assert most directly his personal inspiration; for he says that “Jesus sent and signified by his angel to his servant John the things that were to come to pass;” and that the divine Person, like the Son of man, who appeared to him when he was in the Spirit, commanded him to write in a book what he saw. And in one of the visions there recorded, when the dispensation of the Gospel was presented to St. John under the figure of a great city, the New Jerusalem, descending out of heaven, there is one part of the image which is a beautiful expression of that authority in settling the 488form of the Christian church, and teaching articles of faith, which the Apostles derived from their inspiration: “The wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve Apostles of the Lamb,” Rev. i, 1, 10–19; xxi, 14.

These are only a few of the many passages to the same purpose which occur in reading the New Testament. But it is manifest, even from them, that the manner in which the Apostles speak of their own writings is calculated to mislead every candid reader, unless they really wrote under the direction of the Spirit of God. So gross and daring an imposture is absolutely inconsistent not only with their whole character, but also with those gifts of the Holy Ghost of which there is unquestionable evidence that they were possessed; and which, being the natural vouchers of the assertion made by them concerning their own writings, cannot be supposed, upon the principles of sound theism, to have been imparted for a long course of years to persons who continued during all that time asserting such a falsehood, and appealing to those gifts for the truth of what they said.

4. The claim of the Apostles derives much confirmation from the reception which it met with among the Christians of their days. It appears from an expression of St. Peter, that at the time when he wrote his second epistle, the epistles of St. Paul were classed with “the other Scriptures,” the books of the Old Testament; that is, were accounted inspired writings, 2 Peter iii, 16. It is well known to those who are versed in the early history of the church, with what care the first Christians discriminated between the apostolical writings and the compositions of other authors however much distinguished by their piety, and with what reverence they received those books which were known by their inscription, by the place from which they proceeded, or the manner in which they were circulated, to be the work of an Apostle. In Lardner’s “Credibility of the Gospel History,” will be found the most particular information upon this subject; and it will be perceived that the whole history of the supposititious writings which appeared in early times, conspires in attesting the veneration in which the authority of the Apostles was held by the Christian church. We learn from Justin Martyr, that, before the middle of the second century, “the memoirs of the Apostles, and the compositions of the prophets,” were read together in the Christian assemblies. We know, that from the earliest times, the church has submitted to the writings of the Apostles as the infallible standard of faith and practice; and we find the ground of this peculiar respect expressed by the first Christian writers as well as by their successors, who speak of the writings of the Apostles as “divine writings from the inspiration of the Holy Ghost.”

To this general argument we may add that right views on the subject of the inspiration of the sacred writers are also necessary, because even some Christian writers have spoken obscurely and unsatisfactorily on the subject, dividing inspiration into different kinds, and assigning each to different portions of the holy volume. By inspiration we are to understand, that the sacred writers composed their works under so plenary and immediate an influence of the Holy Spirit, that God may be said to speak by those writers to man, and not merely that they spoke to men in the name of God, and by his authority; and there is a considerable difference between the two propositions. Each supposes an authentic revelation from God; but the former view secures the Scriptures from all error both as to the subjects spoken, and the manner of expressing them. This, too, is the doctrine taught in the Scriptures themselves, which declare not only that the prophets and Apostles spake in the name of God, but that God spake by them as his instruments. “The Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake.” “Well spake the Holy Ghost by Esaias the prophet.” “The prophecy came not of old time, by the will of man; but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” For this reason, not only that the matter contained in the book of “the Law, the Prophets, and the Psalms,” (the usual phrase by which the Jews designated the whole Old Testament,) was true; but that the books were written under divine inspiration, they are called collectively by our Lord and by his Apostles, “The Scriptures,” in contradistinction to all other writings;--a term which the Apostle Peter, as stated above, applies also to the writings of St. Paul, and which therefore verifies them as standing on the same level with the books of the Old Testament as to their inspiration: “Even as our beloved brother Paul also, according to the wisdom given unto him, hath written unto you; as also in all his epistles, speaking of these things, in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other Scriptures, unto their own destruction.” The Apostles also, as we have seen, expressly claim an inspiration, not only as to the subjects on which they wrote, but as to the words in which they expressed themselves. Farther, our Lord promised to them the Holy Spirit “to guide them into all truth;” and that he was not to fulfil his office by suggesting thoughts only, but words, is clear from Christ’s discourse with them on the subject of the persecutions they were to endure for “his name’s sake:” “And when they bring you into the synagogues, and unto magistrates and powers, take ye no thought how or what thing ye shall answer, or what ye shall say; for the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say; for it is not ye that speak; but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.” This inspiration of words is also asserted by St. Paul as to himself and his brethren, when he says to the Corinthians, “Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth; but which the Holy Ghost teacheth.” Thus we find that the claim which the sacred writers make on this subject is, that they were in truth what they have been aptly called, “the penmen of the 489Holy Ghost;” and that the words in which they clothed “the wisdom given unto them” were words “taught” by the Holy Spirit.

But it may be asked, How are we to account for that difference of style which is observable in each that manner, too, so natural to each, and so distinct in all with those reasonings, recollections of memory, and other indications of the working of the mind of each writer in its own character and temperament Some persons, indeed, observing this, have concluded their style and manner to be entirely human, while their thoughts were either wholly divine, or so superintended by the Holy Ghost as to have been adopted by him, and therefore, although sometimes natural, to be of equal authority as if they had been exclusively of divine suggestion. This, indeed, would be sufficient to oblige our implicit credence to their writings, as being from God; but it falls below the force of the passages above cited, and which attribute to a divine agency their words also. The matter may be rightly conceived by considering, that an inspiration of words took place either by suggesting those most fit to express the thoughts, or by overruling the selection of such words from the common as if they had been exclusively of divine suggestion. This, indeed, would be sufficient to oblige our implicit credence to their writings, as being from God; but it falls below the force of the passages above cited, and which attribute to a divine agency the store acquired by, and laid up in, the mind of each writer, which is quite compatible with the fact, that a peculiarity and appropriateness of manner might still be left to them separately. To suppose that an inspiration of terms, as well as thoughts, could not take place without producing one uniform style and manner, is to suppose that the minds of the writers would thus become entirely passive under the influence of the Holy Spirit; whereas it is easily conceivable that the verbiage, style, and manner of each, was not so much displaced, as elevated, enriched, and controlled by the Holy Spirit; and that there was a previous fitness, in all these respects, in all the sacred penmen, for which they were chosen to be the instruments under the aid and direction of the Holy Ghost, of writing such portions of the general revelation as the wisdom of God assigned to each of them. On the other hand, while it is so conceivable that the words and manner of each might be appropriated to his own design by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, it by no means follows that both were not greatly altered, as well as controlled, although they still retained a general similarity to the uninfluenced style and manner of each, and still presented a characteristic variety. As none of their writings on ordinary occasions, and when uninspired, have come down to us, we cannot judge of the degree of this difference; and therefore no one can with any just reason affirm that their writings are “the word of God as to the doctrine, but the word of man as to the channel of conveyance.” Certain it is, that a vast difference may be remarked between the writings of the Apostles, and those of the most eminent fathers of the times nearest to them; and that not only as to precision and strength of thought, but also as to language. This circumstance is at least strongly presumptive, that although the style of inspired men was not stripped of the characteristic peculiarity of the writers, it was greatly exalted and influenced.

But the same force of inspiration, so to speak, was not probably exerted upon each of the sacred writers, or upon the same writer throughout his writings, whatever might be its subject. There is no necessity that we should so state the case, in order to maintain what is essential to our faith,--the plenary inspiration of each of the sacred writers. In miracles there was no needless application of divine power. Traditional history and written chronicles, facts of known occurrence, and opinions which were received by all, are often inserted or referred to by the sacred writers. There needed no miraculous operation upon the memory to recall what the memory was furnished with, or to reveal a fact which the writers previously and perfectly knew: but their plenary inspiration consisted in this, that they were kept from all lapses of memory, or inadequate conceptions, even on these subjects; and on all others the degree of communication and influence, both as to doctrine, facts, and the terms in which they were to be recorded for the edification of the church, was proportioned to the necessity of the case, but so that the whole was authenticated or dictated by the Holy Spirit with so full an influence, that it became truth without mixture of error, expressed in such terms as he himself ruled or suggested. This, then, seems the true notion of plenary inspiration, that for the revelation, insertion, and adequate enunciation of truth, it was full and complete.

The principal objections to this view of the inspiration of words are well answered by Dr. Woods, an American divine, in a recent publication, from which, as the subject has been lately debated in this country, the following extracts will be acceptable, although there is in them a repetition of some of the preceding observations:--

“One argument which has been urged against the supposition that divine inspiration had a respect to language, is, that the language employed by the inspired writers exhibits no marks of a divine interference, but is perfectly conformed to the genius and taste of the writers. The fact here alleged is admitted. But how does it support the opinion of those who allege it Is it not evident, that God may exercise a perfect superintendency over inspired writers as to the language they shall use, and yet that each one of them shall write in his own style, and in all respects according to his own taste May not God give such aid to his servants, that, while using their own style, they will certainly be secured against all mistakes, and exhibit the truth with perfect propriety It is unquestionable, that 490Isaiah, and St. Paul, and St. John might be under the entire direction of the Holy Spirit, even as to language, and, at the same time, that each one of them might write in his own manner; and that the peculiar manner of each might be adopted to answer an important end; and that the variety of style, thus introduced into the sacred volume, might be suited to excite a livelier interest in the minds of men, and to secure to them a far greater amount of good, than could ever have been derived from any one mode of writing. The great variety existing among men as to their natural talents, and their peculiar manner of thinking and writing may, in this way, be turned to account in the work of revelation, as well as in the concerns of common life. Now, is it not clearly a matter of fact, that God has made use of this variety, and given the Holy Spirit to men, differing widely from each other in regard to natural endowments, and knowledge, and style, and employed them, with all their various gifts, as agents in writing the Holy Scriptures And what colour of reason can we have to suppose, that the language which they used was less under the divine direction on account of this variety, than if it had been perfectly uniform throughout

“To prove that divine inspiration had no respect to the language of the sacred writers, it is farther alleged, that even the same doctrine is taught and the same event described in a different manner by different writers. This fact I also admit. But how does it prove that inspiration had no respect to language Is not the variety alleged a manifest advantage, as to the impression which is likely to be made upon the minds of men Is not testimony, which is substantially the same, always considered as entitled to higher credit, when it is given by different witnesses in different language, and in a different order And is it not perfectly reasonable to suppose, that, in making a revelation, God would have respect to the common principles of human nature and human society, and would exert his influence and control over inspired men in such a manner, that, by exhibiting the same doctrines and facts in different ways, they should make a more salutary impression, and should more effectually compass the great ends of a revelation All I have to advance on this part of the subject may be summed up in these two positions: 1. The variety of manner apparent among different inspired writers, even when treating of the same subjects, is far better suited to promote the object of divine revelation, than a perfect uniformity. 2. It is agreeable to our worthiest conceptions of God and his administration, that he should make use of the best means for the accomplishment of his designs; and, of course, that he should impart the gift of inspiration to men of different tastes and habits as to language, and should lead them, while writing the Scriptures, to exhibit all the variety of manner naturally arising from the diversified character of their minds.

“But there is another argument, perhaps the most plausible of all, against supposing that inspiration had any respect to language; which is, that the supposition of a divine influence in this respect is wholly unnecessary; that the sacred writers, having the requisite information in regard to the subjects on which they were to write, might, so far as language is concerned, be left entirely to their own judgment and fidelity. But this view of the subject is not satisfactory. For whatever may be said as to the judgment and fidelity of those who wrote the Scriptures, there is one important circumstance which cannot be accounted for, without supposing them to have enjoyed a guidance above that of their own minds; namely, that they were infallibly preserved from every mistake or impropriety in the manner of writing. If we should admit that the divine superintendence and guidance afforded to the inspired writers had no relation at all to the manner in which they exhibited either doctrines or facts; how easily might we be disturbed with doubts, in regard to the propriety of some of their representations We should most certainly consider them as liable to all the inadvertencies and mistakes, to which uninspired men are commonly liable; and we should think ourselves perfectly justified in undertaking to charge them with real errors and faults as to style, and to show how their language might have been improved; and, in short, to treat their writings just as we treat the writings of Shakspeare and Addison. ‘Here,’ we might say, ‘Paul was unfortunate in the choice of words; and here his language does not express the ideas which he must have intended to convey.’ ‘Here the style of St. John was inadvertent; and here it was faulty: and here it would have been more agreeable to the nature of the subject, and would have more accurately expressed the truth, had it been altered thus.’ If the language of the sacred writers did not in any way come under the inspection of the Holy Spirit, and if they were left, just as other writers are, to their own unaided faculties in regard to every thing which pertained to the manner of writing; then, evidently, we might use the same freedom in animadverting upon their style, as upon the style of other writers. But who could treat the volume of inspiration in this manner, without impiety and profaneness And rather than make any approach to this, who would not choose to go to an excess, if there could be an excess, in reverence for the word of God

“On this subject, far be it from me to indulge a curiosity which would pry into things not intended for human intelligence. And far be it from me to expend zeal in supporting opinions not warranted by the word of God. But this one point I think it specially important to maintain; namely, that the sacred writers had such direction of the Holy Spirit, that they were secured against all liability to error, and enabled to write just what God pleased; so that what they wrote is, in truth, the word of God, and can never be subject to any charge of mistake either as to matter or form. Whether this perfect correctness and propriety as to 491language resulted from the divine guidance directly or indirectly, is a question of no particular consequence. If the Spirit of God directs the minds of inspired men, and gives them just conceptions relative to the subjects on which they are to write; and if he constitutes and maintains a connection, true and invariable, between their conceptions and the language they employ to express them, the language must, in this way, be as infallible, and as worthy of God, as though it were dictated directly by the Holy Spirit. But to assert that the sacred writers used such language as they chose, or such as was natural to them, without any special divine superintendence, and that, in respect to style, they are to be regarded in the same light, and equally liable to mistakes, as other writers, is plainly contrary to the representations which they themselves make, and is suited to diminish our confidence in the word of God. For how could we have entire confidence in the representations of Scripture, if, after God had instructed the minds of the sacred writers in the truth to be communicated, he gave them up to all the inadvertencies and errors to which human nature in general is exposed, and took no effectual care that their manner of writing should be according to his will

“Let us then briefly examine the subject, as it is presented in the Holy Scriptures, and see whether we find sufficient reason to affirm that inspiration had no relation whatever to language. 1. The Apostles were the subjects of such a divine inspiration as enabled them to speak ‘with other tongues:’ here inspiration related directly to language. 2. It is the opinion of most writers, that, in some instances, inspired men had not in their own minds a clear understanding of the things which they spake or wrote. One instance of this, commonly referred to, is the case of Daniel, who heard and repeated what the angel said, though he did not understand it, Dan. xii, 7–9. This has also been thought to be in some measure the case with the prophets referred to, 1 Peter i, 10–12. And is there not reason to think this may have been the case with many of the prophetic representations contained in the Psalms, and many of the symbolical rites of the Mosaic institute Various matters are found in the Old Testament, which were not intended so much for the benefit of the writers, or their contemporaries, as for the benefit of future ages. And this might have been a sufficient reason why they should be left without a clear understanding of the things which they wrote. In such cases, if the opinion above stated is correct, inspired men were led to make use of expressions, the meaning of which they did not fully understand. And, according to this view, it would seem that the teaching of the Spirit which they enjoyed, must have related rather to the words than to the sense. 3. Those who deny that the divine influence afforded to the sacred writers had any respect to language, can find no support in the texts which most directly relate to the subject of inspiration. And it is surely in such texts, if any where, that we should suppose they would find support. The passage, 2 Peter i, 21, is a remarkable one. It asserts that ‘holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.’ There is surely nothing here which limits the divine influence to the conceptions of their minds. They were moved by the Holy Ghost to speak or write. ‘All Scripture is divinely inspired,’ 2 Tim. iii, 16. Does this text afford any proof that the divine influence granted to the inspired penmen was confined to their inward conceptions, and had no respect whatever to the manner in which they expressed their conceptions What is Scripture Is it divine truth conceived in the mind, or divine truth written In Heb. i, 1, it is said that ‘God spake to the fathers by the prophets.’ Does this afford any proof that the divine guidance which the prophets enjoyed related exclusively to the conceptions of their own minds, and had no respect to the manner in which they communicated those conceptions Must we not rather think the meaning to be, that God influenced the prophets to utter or make known important truths And how could they do this, except by the use of proper words

“I have argued in favour of the inspiration of the Apostles, from their commission. They were sent by Christ to teach the truths of religion in his stead. It was an arduous work; and in the execution of it they needed and enjoyed much divine assistance. But forming right conceptions of Christianity in their own minds, was not the great work assigned to the Apostles. If the divine assistance reached only to this, it reached only to that which concerned them as private men, and which they might have possessed though they had never been commissioned to teach others. As Apostles, they were to preach the Gospel to all who could be brought to hear it, and to make a record of divine truth for the benefit of future ages. Now is it at all reasonable to suppose, that the divine assistance afforded them had no respect to their main business, and that, in the momentous and difficult work of communicating the truths of religion, either orally or by writing, they were left to themselves, and so exposed to all the errors and inadvertencies of uninspired men But our reasoning does not stop here. For that divine assistance which we might reasonably suppose would have been granted to the Apostles in the work of teaching divine truth, is the very thing which Christ promised them in the texts before cited. I shall refer only to Matt. x, 19, 20, ‘When they shall deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak; for it shall be given you in the same hour what ye shall speak. For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father that speaketh in you.’ This promise, as Knapp understands it, implies, that divine assistance should extend not only to what they should say, but to the manner in which they should say it. It is not, however, to be understood as implying, that the Apostles were not rational and voluntary 492agents in the discharge of their office. But it implies that, in consequence of the influence of the Spirit to be exercised over them, they should say what God would have them to say, without any liability to mistake, either as to matter or manner. From the above-cited promise, taken in connection with the instances of its accomplishment which are recorded in the Acts of the Apostles, it becomes evident that God may exert his highest influence upon his servants, so as completely to guide them in thought and in utterance, in regard to subjects which lie chiefly within the province of their natural faculties. For in those speeches of the Apostles which are left on record, we find that most of the things which they declared, were things which, for aught that appears, they might have known, and might have expressed to others, in the natural exercise of their own faculties. This principle being admitted, and kept steadily in view, will relieve us of many difficulties in regard to the doctrine of inspiration. The passage, 1 Cor. ii, 12, 13, already cited as proof of the inspiration of the Apostles, is very far from favouring the opinion that inspiration had no respect whatever to their language, or that it related exclusively to their thoughts. ‘Which things we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth.’ The Apostle avoided the style and the manner of teaching which prevailed among the wise men of Greece, and made use of a style which corresponded with the nature of his subject, and the end he had in view. And this, he tells us, he did, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. His language, or manner of teaching, was the thing to which the divine influence imparted to him particularly referred. Storr and Flatt give the following interpretation of this text: Paul, they say, asserts that the doctrines of Christianity were revealed to him by the almighty agency of God himself; and, finally, that the inspiration of the divine Spirit extended even to his words, and to all his exhibitions of revealed truths. They add, that St. Paul clearly distinguishes between the doctrine itself, and the manner in which it is communicated.”

INTERMEDIATE STATE. Beside questions concerning the nature of the happiness of heaven, there have also arisen questions concerning the state of the soul in the interval between death and the general resurrection. If we believe, with Dr. Priestley, that the soul is not a substance distinct from the body, we must believe with him that the whole of the human machine is at rest after death, till it be restored to its functions at the last day; but if we are convinced of the immateriality of the soul, we shall not think it so entirely dependent in all its operations upon its present companion, but that it may exist and act in an unembodied state. And if once we are satisfied that a state of separate existence is possible, we shall easily attach credit to the interpretation commonly given of the various expressions in Scripture, which intimate that the souls of good men are admitted to the presence of God immediately after death, although we soon find that a bound is set to our speculations concerning the nature of this intermediate state. But when we leave philosophical probability, and come to the doctrine of Scripture, the only ground of certainty on all such subjects, a great number of passages are so explicit, that no ingenuity of interpretation has been sufficient to weaken their evidence on this point. One branch of the opinions that have been held concerning an intermediate state is the Popish doctrine of purgatory; a doctrine which appears upon the slightest inspection of the texts that have been adduced in support of it to derive no evidence from Scripture; which originated in the error of the church of Rome in assigning to personal suffering a place in the justification of a sinner; and which is completely overturned by the doctrine of justification by faith, and by the general strain of Scripture, which represents this life as a state of probation, upon our conduct during which our everlasting condition depends. The holy Lazarus is carried by angels into Abraham’s bosom; and the rich and careless sinner lifts up his eyes in hell, and is separated from the place of bliss by an impassable gulf. This at once disproves the doctrine of purgatory, and demonstrates an intermediate conscious state of happiness and misery.

IRON, ; occurs first in Gen. iv, 22, and afterward frequently; and the Chaldee , in Dan. ii, 33, 41, and elsewhere often in that book; sd, Rev. xviii, 12, and the adjectives, Acts xii, 10; Rev. ii, 27; ix, 9; xii, 5; xix, 15; a well known and very serviceable metal. The knowledge of working it was very ancient, as appears from Genesis iv, 22. We do not, however, find that Moses made use of iron in the fabric of the tabernacle in the wilderness, or Solomon in any part of the temple at Jerusalem. Yet, from the manner in which the Jewish legislator speaks of iron, the metal, it appears, must have been in use in Egypt before his time. He celebrates the great hardness of it, Lev. xxvi, 19; Deut. xxviii, 23, 48; takes notice that the bedstead of Og, king of Bashan, was of iron, Deut. iii, 11; he speaks of mines of iron, Deut. viii, 9; and he compares the severity of the servitude of the Israelites in Egypt to the heat of a furnace for melting iron, Deut. iv, 20. We find, also, that swords, Num. xxxv, 16, axes, Deut. xix, 5, and tools for cutting stones, Deut. xxvii, 5, were made of iron. By the “northern iron,” Jer. xv, 12, we may probably understand the hardened iron, called in Greek , from the Chalybes, a people bordering on the Euxine sea, and consequently lying on the north of Judea, by whom the art of tempering steel is said to have been discovered. Strabo speaks of this people by the name of Chalybes, but afterward Chaldæi; and mentions their iron mines. These, however, were a different people from the Chaldeans, who were united with the Babylonians.

ISAAC, the son of Abraham and Sarah, 493was born in the year of the world 2108. His name, which signifies laughter, was given him by his mother, because when it was told her by an angel that she should have a son, and that at a time of life when, according to the course of nature, she was past child-bearing, she privately laughed, Gen. xviii, 10–12. And when the child was born she said, “God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me,” Gen. xxi, 6. The life of Isaac, for the first seventy-five years of it, is so blended with that of his illustrious father, that the principal incidents of it have been already noticed under the article Abraham. His birth was attended with some extraordinary circumstances: it was the subject of various promises and prophecies; an event most ardently desired by his parents, and yet purposely delayed by Divine Providence till they were both advanced in years, no doubt for the trial of their faith, and that Isaac might more evidently appear to be the gift of God, and “the child of promise.” At an early period of life he was the object of the profane contempt of Ishmael, the son of the bond woman, by whom he was persecuted; and as in the circumstances attending his birth there was something typical of the birth of Abraham’s greater Son, the Messiah, the promised Seed; so, in the latter instance, we contemplate in him a resemblance of real Christians, who, as Isaac was, are “the children of promise,” invested in all the immunities and blessings of the new covenant; but, as then, “he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now,” Gal. iv, 29.

When Isaac had arrived at a state of manhood, he was required to give a signal proof of his entire devotedness to God. Abraham was commanded to offer up his beloved son in sacrifice, Genesis xxii, 1. This remarkable transaction, so far as Abraham was concerned in it, has already been considered under the article Abraham. But, if from this trial of the faith of the parent we turn our attention to the conduct of Isaac, the victim destined for the slaughter, we behold an example of faith and of dutiful obedience equally conspicuous with that of his honoured parent. Isaac submitted, as it should seem, without resistance, to be bound and laid on the altar, exposing his body to the knife that was lifted up to destroy him. How strikingly calculated is this remarkable history to direct our thoughts to a more exalted personage, whom Isaac prefigured; and to a more astonishing transaction represented by that on Mount Moriah! Behold Jesus Christ, that Seed of Abraham, in whom all the families of the earth were to be blessed, voluntarily going forth, in obedience to the command of his heavenly Father, and laying down his life, as a sacrifice for the sins of the world.

In the progress of Isaac’s history, we find him, in the time of his greatest activity and vigour, a man of retired habits and of remarkable calmness of mind. He appears to have been affectionately attached to his mother Sarah, and, even at the age of forty, was not insusceptible of great sorrow on occasion of her death. But he allows his father to choose for him a suitable partner in life; and Rebekah was selected from among his own kindred, in preference to the daughters of Canaan, in the midst of whom he dwelt. In a few years afterward, he who had mourned for his mother, was called to weep over his father’s grave; and in that last act of filial duty, it is pleasing to find the two rival brothers, Isaac and Ishmael, meeting together for the interment of Abraham. The occasion, indeed, was well calculated to allay all existing jealousies and contentions, and cause every family broil to cease, Gen. xxv, 9. After the death of Abraham, “God blessed his son Isaac;” but, though the latter had now been married twenty years, Rebekah was childless. “Isaac entreated the Lord for his wife, because she was barren; and the Lord was entreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived,” Gen. xxv, 21. God also promised to multiply Isaac’s seed, and his promise was fulfilled. Two children were born to him at one time, concerning whom the divine purpose was declared to the mother, and no doubt to the father also, that “the elder should serve the younger.” A famine which came upon the country in the days of Isaac, obliged him to remove his family and flocks and retire to Gerar, in the country of the Philistines, of which Abimelech was at that time king. The possessions of Isaac multiplied so prodigiously, that the inhabitants of the country became envious of him, and even Abimelech, to preserve peace among them, was under the necessity of requesting him to retire, because he was become too powerful. He accordingly withdrew, and pitched his tent in the valley of Gerar, where he digged new wells, and, after a time, returned to Beersheba, where he fixed his habitation, Genesis xxvi, 1–23. Here the Lord appeared to him, and renewed to him the covenant which he had made with Abraham, promising to be his God, and to make him a blessing to others. Abimelech now sought his friendship, and, to form an alliance with him, paid him a visit; on which occasion Isaac displayed his magnificence by a sumptuous entertainment, A. M. 2240.

When he was a hundred and thirty-seven years of age, and his sight had so failed him that he could not distinguish one of his sons from the other, Jacob craftily obtained from him the blessing of primogeniture. Yet Isaac survived many years after this, to him, distressing occurrence. He sent Jacob into Mesopotamia, there to take a wife of his own family, Genesis xxviii, 1, 2, and to prevent his marrying among the Canaanites as his brother Esau had done. And when Jacob returned, after a lapse of twenty years, Isaac was still living, and continued to live twenty-three years longer. He then died at the age of a hundred and eighty years, and was buried with Abraham by his sons Esau and Jacob, Gen. xxxv, 29.Gen. xxxv, 29. See Esau and Jacob.

ISAIAH. Though fifth in the order of time, 494the writings of the Prophet Isaiah are placed first in order of the prophetical books, principally on account of the sublimity and importance of his predictions, and partly also because the book which bears his name is larger than all the twelve minor prophets put together. Concerning his family and descent, nothing certain has been recorded, except what he himself tells us, Isaiah, i, 1, namely, that he was the son of Amos, and discharged the prophetic office “in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah,” who successively flourished between A. M. 3194 and 3305. There is a current tradition that he was of the blood royal; and some writers have affirmed that his father Amoz or Amos was the son of Joash, and consequently brother of Uzziah, king of Judah. Jerom, on the authority of some rabbinical writers, says, that the prophet gave his daughter in marriage to Manasseh, king of Judah; but this opinion is scarcely credible, because Manasseh did not commence his reign until about sixty years after Isaiah had begun to discharge his prophetic functions. He must, indeed, have exercised the office of a prophet during a long period of time, if he lived to the reign of Manasseh; for the lowest computation, beginning from the year in which Uzziah died, when he is by some supposed to have received his first appointment to that office, brings it to sixty-one years. But the tradition of the Jews, which has been adopted by most Christian commentators, that he was put to death by Manasseh, is very uncertain; and Aben Ezra, one of the most celebrated Jewish writers, is rather of opinion that he died before Hezekiah; which Bishop Lowth thinks most probable. It is, however, certain, that he lived at least to the fifteenth or sixteenth year of Hezekiah; which makes the least possible term of the duration of his prophetic office to be about forty-eight years. The name of Isaiah, as Vitringa has remarked after several preceding commentators, is in some measure descriptive of his high character, since it signifies the salvation of Jehovah; and was given with singular propriety to him, who foretold the advent of the Messiah, through whom “all flesh shall see the salvation of God,” Isa. xl, 5; Luke iii, 6; Acts iv, 12. Isaiah was contemporary with the Prophets Amos, Hosea, Joel, and Micah.

Isaiah is uniformly spoken of in the Scriptures as a prophet of the highest dignity: Bishop Lowth calls him the prince of all the prophets, and pronounces the whole of his book to be poetical, with the exception of a few detached passages. It is remarkable, that his wife is styled a prophetess in Isaiah viii, 3; whence the rabbinical writers have concluded that she possessed the spirit of prophecy: but it is very probable that the prophets’ wives were called prophetesses, as the priests’ wives were termed priestesses, only from the quality of their husbands. Although nothing farther is recorded in the Scriptures concerning the wife of Isaiah, we find two of his sons mentioned in his prophecy, who were types or figurative pledges; and their names and actions were intended to awaken a religious attention in the persons whom they were commissioned to address and to instruct. Thus, Shear-jashub signifies, “a remnant shall return,” and showed that the captives who should be carried to Babylon should return thence after a certain time, Isaiah vii, 3; and Maher-shalal-hash-baz, which denotes, “make speed (or run swiftly) to the spoil,” implied that the kingdoms of Israel and Syria would in a short time be ravaged, Isaiah viii, 1, 3. Beside the volume of prophecies, which we are now to consider, it appears from 2 Chron. xxvi, 22, that Isaiah wrote an account of “the acts of Uzziah,” king of Judah: this has perished with some other writings of the prophets, which, as probably not written by inspiration, were never admitted into the canon of Scripture. There are also two apocryphal books ascribed to him, namely, The Ascension of Isaiah, and The Apocalypse of Isaiah; but these are evidently forgeries of a later date, and the Apocalypse has long since perished.

The scope of Isaiah’s predictions is threefold, namely, 1. To detect, reprove, aggravate, and condemn, the sins of the Jewish people especially, and also the iniquities of the ten tribes of Israel, and the abominations of many Gentile nations and countries; denouncing the severest judgments against all sorts and degrees of persons, whether Jews or Gentiles. 2. To invite persons of every rank and condition, both Jews and Gentiles, to repentance and reformation, by numerous promises of pardon and mercy. It is worthy of remark, that no such promises are intermingled with the denunciations of divine vengeance against Babylon, although they occur in the threatenings against every other people. 3. To comfort all the truly pious, in the midst of all the calamities and judgments denounced against the wicked, with prophetic promises of the true Messiah, which seem almost to anticipate the Gospel history, so clearly do they foreshow the divine character of Christ.

Isaiah has, with singular propriety, been denominated the evangelical prophet, on account of the number and variety of his prophecies concerning the advent and character, the ministry and preaching, the sufferings and death, and the extensive permanent kingdom, of the Messiah. So explicit and determinate are his predictions, as well as so numerous, that he seems to speak rather of things past than of events yet future; and he may rather be called an evangelist than a prophet. No one, indeed, can be at a loss in applying them to the mission and character of Jesus Christ, and to the events which are cited in his history by the writers of the New Testament. This prophet, says Bishop Lowth, abounds in such transcendent excellencies, that he may be properly said to afford the most perfect model of prophetic poetry. He is at once elegant and sublime, forcible and ornamented; he unites energy with copiousness, and dignity with variety. In his sentiments there is uncommon elevation and majesty; in his imagery, 495the utmost propriety, elegance, dignity, and diversity; in his language, uncommon beauty and energy; and, notwithstanding the obscurity of his subjects, a surprising degree of clearness and simplicity. To these we may add, that there is such sweetness in the poetical composition of his sentences, whether it proceed from art or genius, that, if the Hebrew poetry at present is possessed of any remains of its native grace and harmony, we shall chiefly find them in the writings of Isaiah: so that the saying of Ezekiel may most justly be applied to this prophet:--

“Thou art the confirmed exemplar of measures,
Full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty.”
Ezekiel xxviii, 12.

Isaiah also greatly excels in all the graces of method, order, connection, and arrangement: though in asserting this we must not forget the nature of the prophetic impulse, which bears away the mind with irresistible violence, and frequently in rapid transitions from near to remote objects, from human to divine. We must likewise be careful in remarking the limits of particular predictions, since, as they are now extant, they are often improperly connected, without any marks of discrimination; which injudicious arrangement, on some occasions, creates almost insuperable difficulties.

Bishop Lowth has selected the thirty-fourth and thirty-fifth chapters of this prophet, as a specimen of the poetic style in which Isaiah delivers his predictions, and has illustrated at some length the various beauties which eminently distinguish the simple, regular, and perfect poem contained in those chapters. But the grandest specimen of his poetry is presented in the fourteenth chapter, which is one of the most sublime odes occurring in the Bible, and contains the noblest personifications to be found in the records of poetry. The prophet, after predicting the liberation of the Jews from their severe captivity in Babylon, and their restoration to their own country, verses 1–3, introduces a chorus of them, expressing their surprise and astonishment at the sudden downfall of Babylon, and the great reverse of fortune that had befallen the tyrant, who, like his predecessors, had oppressed his own, and harassed the neighbouring kingdoms. These oppressed kingdoms, or their rulers, are represented under the image of the fir trees and the cedars of Libanus, which is frequently used to express any thing in the political or religious world that is supereminently great and majestic: the whole earth shouts for joy; the cedars of Libanus utter a severe taunt over the fallen tyrant, and boast their security now he is no more, verses 4–8. This is followed, verse 9, by one of the boldest and most animated personifications of hades, or the regions of the dead, that was ever executed in poetry. Hades excites his inhabitants, the shades of princes, and the departed spirits of monarchs. These illustrious shades rise at once from their couches as from their thrones; and, advancing to the entrance of the cavern to meet the king of Babylon, they insult and deride him on being reduced to the same low state of impotence and dissolution with themselves, verses 10, 11. The Jews now resume the speech, verse 12; they address the king of Babylon as the morning star fallen from heaven, as the first in splendour and dignity, in the political world fallen from his high state: they introduce him as uttering the most extravagant vaunts of his power and ambitious designs in his former glory; these are strongly contrasted, in the close, with his present low and abject condition, verses 13–15. Immediately follows a different scene, and a most happy image, to diversify the same subject, and give it a new turn and additional force. Certain persons are introduced, who light upon the corpse of the king of Babylon, cast out and lying naked upon the bare ground, among the common slain, just after the taking of the city, covered with wounds, and so disfigured, that it is some time before they know him. They accost him with the severest taunts, and bitterly reproach him with his destructive ambition, and his cruel usage of the conquered; which have deservedly brought upon him this ignominious treatment, so different from what those of his high rank usually meet with, and which shall cover his posterity with disgrace, verses 16–20. To complete the whole, God is introduced, declaring the fate of Babylon; the utter extirpation of the royal family, and the total desolation of the city; the deliverance of his people, and the destruction of their enemies; confirming the irreversible decree by the awful sanction of his oath, verses 21–27. How forcible, says Bishop Louth, is this imagery, how diversified, how sublime! How elevated the diction, the figures, the sentiments! The Jewish nation, the cedars of Lebanon, the ghosts of departed kings, the Babylonish monarch, the travellers who find his corpse, and last of all Jehovah himself, are the characters which support this beautiful lyric drama. One continued action is kept up, or rather, a series of interesting actions are connected together in an incomparable whole: this, indeed, is the principal and distinguished excellence of the sublimer ode, and is displayed in its utmost perfection in this poem of Isaiah, which may be considered as one of the most ancient, and certainly one of the most finished, specimens of that species of composition which has been transmitted to us. The personifications here are frequent, yet not confused; bold, yet not improbable; a free, elevated, and truly divine spirit pervades the whole; nor is there any thing wanting in this ode to defeat its claim to the character of perfect pathos and sublimity. There is not a single instance in the whole compass of Greek and Roman poetry which, in every excellence of composition, can be said to equal or even to approach it.

ISCARIOT, the name of that disciple who betrayed our Saviour. He was so called, probably, as belonging to Karioth, or Cerioth; that is, a man of Kerioth, Matt. x, 4.

496ISHBOSHETH, a son of King Saul, and his successor in the throne. He was acknowledged king by a part of the tribes of Israel, A. M. 2949, while David reigned at Hebron, over the tribe of Judah, 2 Sam. ii, 8, 9, &c; iii. He reigned two years in peace, but the remaining eight years were spent in perpetual wars between his troops and those of David, till in the end he perished, and with him ended the royal dignity of the house of Saul.

ISHMAELITES, the descendants of Ishmael, the son of Abraham by Hagar, his Egyptian bond-maid. Ishmael was born B. C. 1910, and his name, founded on a circumstance which afforded relief to his mother, when she was wandering from her master’s house toward Egypt, her native country, is derived from the Hebrew , formed of , to hear, and , God, and denoting, “the Lord hath hearkened.” The heavenly messenger who appeared to Hagar in the wilderness, and instructed her by what name to call her future son, predicted also that he and his posterity would prove fierce and warlike, engaged in repeated hostilities, and yet able to maintain their independence. Hagar, deriving encouragement from this circumstance, returned to the house of Abraham, and was soon delivered of her promised son. The father regarded Ishmael as the heir of his wealth, till Sarah had the promise of her son Isaac. After the birth of Isaac, Abraham was persuaded by his wife to dismiss Hagar and her son; and the patriarch probably provided for their subsistence in some distant situation, where they could not encroach on the patrimony of Isaac. Having wandered for some time in the wilderness of Beersheba, they proceeded farther to the wilderness of Paran, which bordered on Arabia; and here Ishmael arrived at maturity, and became an expert archer, or a hunter and warrior. In process of time his mother procured for him a wife out of Egypt, by whom he had twelve sons, who eventually established themselves as the heads of so many distinct Arabian tribes. Accordingly, the descendants of Ishmael are mentioned in history under the general name of Arabians and Ishmaelites. Of Ishmael’s personal history, we merely learn from the sacred writings, that he joined with his brother Isaac in paying the last tribute of respect to the remains of their father; and that he died at the age of a hundred and thirty-seven years, B. C. 1773, Gen. xxv, 9, 18. His descendants, according to the Scripture account, spread themselves “from Havilah to Shur, that is, before Egypt, as thou goest toward Assyria.” From this brief statement, we may conjecture how far their territory extended; for Havilah, according to the generality of writers, was situated near the confluence of the Tigris and Euphrates, and Shur, on the isthmus which separates Arabia from Egypt, now called the Isthmus of Suez. From thence we may well imagine, that they spread themselves on both sides so far as to have taken possession of the greatest part of Arabia; and, indeed, Josephus does not scruple to style their progenitor the founder of the Arabian nation. See Arabia.

ISHTOB, a country situated at the northern extremity of the mountains of Gilead, toward Mount Libanus, 2 Sam. x, 6. See Tob.

ISRAEL, a prince of God, or prevailing, or wrestling with God. This is the name which the angel gave Jacob, after having wrestled with him all night at Mahanaim, or Peniel, Genesis xxxii, 1, 2, 28, 29, 30; Hosea xii, 4. By the name of Israel is sometimes understood the person of Jacob, sometimes the whole people of Israel, the whole race of Jacob; sometimes the kingdom of Israel, or ten tribes, distinct from the kingdom of Judah; and finally, the spiritual Israel, the true church of God.

ISRAELITES, the descendants of Israel, who were first called Hebrews by reason of Abraham, who came from the other side of the Euphrates; and afterward Israelites, from Israel, the father of the twelve tribes; and, lastly, Jews, particularly after their return from the captivity of Babylon; because the tribe of Judah was then much stronger and more numerous than the other tribes, and foreigners had scarcely any knowledge but of this tribe. See Jews.

ISSACHAR, the fifth son of Jacob and Leah, Gen. xxx, 14–18. He had four sons, Tola, Phovah, Job, and Shimron. We know nothing particular of his life. The tribe of Issachar had its portion in one of the best parts of the land of Canaan, along the great plain or valley of Jezreel, with the half tribe of Manasseh to the south, that of Zebulun to the north, the Mediterranean to the west, and Jordan, with the extremity of the sea of Tiberias, to the east.

ITHAMAR, Aaron’s fourth son, Exod. vi, 23. There is no probability that he ever exercised the high priesthood. He and his sons continued in the rank of simple priests, till this dignity came into his family in the person of Eli.

ITURÆA, so called from Itur, or Jetur, one of the sons of Ishmael, who settled in it, but whose posterity were either driven out or subdued by the Amorites; when it is supposed to have formed a part of the kingdom of Bashan, and subsequently of the half tribe of Manasseh east of Jordan; but as it was situated beyond the southern spur of Mount Hermon, called the Djebel Heish, this is doubtful. It lay on the north-eastern side of the land of Israel, between it and the territory of Damascus, or Syria; and is supposed to have been the same country at present known by the name of Djedour, on the east of the Djebel Heish, between Damascus and the lake of Tiberias. The Ituræans being subdued by Aristobulus, the high priest and governor of the Jews, B. C. 106, were forced by him to embrace the Jewish religion; and were at the same time incorporated into the state. Philip, one of the sons of Herod the Great, was tetrarch, or governor, of this country when John the Baptist commenced his ministry.

497IVORY. ; from , a tooth, and , elephants; eft, Rev. xviii, 12. The first time that ivory is mentioned in Scripture is in the reign of Solomon. If the forty-fifth Psalm was written before the Canticles, and before Solomon had constructed his royal and magnificent throne, then that contains the first mention of this commodity. It is spoken of as used in decorating those boxes of perfume, whose odours were employed to exhilarate the king’s spirits. It is probable that Solomon, who traded to India, first brought thence elephants and ivory to Judea. “For the king had at sea a navy of Tharshish, with the navy of Hiram: once in three years came the navy of Tharshish, bringing gold and silver, and ivory,” 1 Kings x, 22; 2 Chron. ix, 21. It seems that Solomon had a throne decorated with ivory, and inlaid with gold; the beauty of these materials relieving the splendour, and heightening the lustre of each other, 1 Kings x, 18. Cabinets and wardrobes were ornamented with ivory, by what is called marquetry, Psalm xlv, 8.

Quale per artem
Inclusum buxo aut Oricia terebintho
Lucet ebur.
“So shines a gem, illustrious to behold,
On some fair virgin’s neck, enchased in gold:
So the surrounding ebon’s darker hue
Improves the polish'd ivory to the view.”

These were named “houses of ivory,” probably because made in the form of a house, or palace; as the silver a of Diana, mentioned Acts xix, 24, were in the form of her temple at Ephesus; and as we have now ivory models of the Chinese pagodas, or temples. In this sense we may understand what is said of the ivory house which Ahab made, 1 Kings xxii, 39; for the Hebrew word translated “house is used,” as Dr. Taylor well observes, for “a place, or case, wherein any thing lieth, is contained, or laid up.” Ezekiel gives the name of house to chests of rich apparel, Ezek. xxvii, 24. Dr. Durell, in his note on Psalm xlv, 8, quotes places from Homer and Euripides, where the same appropriation is made. Hesiod makes the same. As to dwelling houses, the most, I think, we can suppose in regard to them is, that they might have ornaments of ivory, as they sometimes have of gold, silver, or other precious materials, in such abundance as to derive an appellation from the article of their decoration; as the Emperor Nero’s palace, mentioned by Suetonius, was named aurea, or “golden,” because lita auro, “overlaid with gold.” This method of ornamental buildings, or apartments, was very ancient among the Greeks. Homer mentions ivory as employed in the palace of Menelaus at Lacedæmon:--

a te step, addµata eta
s t’, t te, a d’ fat.
Odyss. iv, 72.
“Above, beneath, around the palace, shines
The sumless treasure of exhausted mines;
The spoils of elephants the roof inlay,
And studded amber darts a golden ray.”

Bacchylides, cited by Athenæus, says, that, in the island of Ceos, one of the Cyclades, the houses of the great men “glister with gold and ivory.”