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THE RIGHT REVEREND

JOHN LAW, D.D.

LORD BISHOP OP KILLALA AND ACHONRY,

AS A TESTIMONY

OF ESTEEM FOR HIS VIRTUES AND LEARNING,

AND OF GRATITUDE

FOR THE LONG AND FAITHFUL FRIENDSHIP

WITH WHICH

THE AUTHOR HAS BEEN HONOURED

BY HIM,

THIS ATTEMPT TO CONFIRM

THE EVIDENCE OF THE CHRISTIAN HISTORY

IS INSCRIBED

BY HIS AFFECTIONATE

AND

MOST OBLIGED SERVANT,

W. PALEY.

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THE

TRUTH

OF THE

SCRIPTURE HISTORY OF ST. PAUL EVINCED.

THE

CHAP. I. Exposition of the argument. volume of Christian Scriptures contains thirteen letters purporting to be written by St. Paul; it contains also a book, which, amongst other things, professes to deliver the history, or rather memoirs of the history, of this same person. By assuming the genuineness of the letters, we may prove the substantial truth of the history, or, by assuming the truth of the history, we may argue strongly in support of the genuineness of the letters. But I assume neither one nor the other. The reader is at liberty to suppose these writings to have been lately discovered in the library of the Escurial, and to come to our hands destitute of any extrinsic or collateral evidence whatever; and the argument I am about to offer is calculated to shew, that a comparison of the different writings would, even under these circumstances, afford good reason to believe the persons and transactions to have been real, the letters authentic, and the narration in the main to be true.

Agreement or conformity between letters bearing the name of an ancient author, and a received history of that author's life, does not necessarily establish the credit of either: because,

1. The history may, like Middleton's Life of Cicero, or Jortin's Life of Erasmus, have been wholly, or in part, compiled from the letters: in which case it is ma

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