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Philostratus says that when * Titus had taken Jerusalem, and filled all about it with dead • bodies, and the neighbouring nations offered him crowns, he said he was not worthy of such an • honour, nor had he himself, he said, done that great work. He had only lent his hand in the • service of God, when he was pleased to shew his displeasure.' Philostratus says that Apollonius was much pleased with that token of wisdom and humanity. He likewise says that Apollonius wrote a letter to Titus, and sent it by Damis, to this purpose : ' Apollonius sendeth greeting to • Titus emperor of the Romans. Since you refuse to be applauded for bloodshed and victory in • war, I send you the crown of moderation. You know for what things crowns are due.'
Hence divers learned men have argued that Titus refused to be crowned for his victory over the Jews. Basnage," and other learned men, on the contrary, are of opinion that we may rely · upon the authority of Josephus, who tells us that he went from Antioch to Zeugma, whither • came to him messengers from Vologesus, king of Parthia, and brought him a crown of gold upon the victory obtained by him over the Jews; which he accepted of, and feasted the king's
messengers, and then returned to Antioch. Moreover he accepted of a triumph for his victory over the Jews, and all other honours customary upon the like occasion. Nevertheless Olearius, in his notes upon the place, argues that Philostratus needs not to be understood to say that Titus refused the crowns offered him, but only said that he was unworthy of that honour, he having been only an instrument in the hand of God for displaying his just vengeance against guilty men.
And it must be owned that Olearius expresseth himself with great judgment and moderation.. Either way those learned men are to be reckoned mistaken, who have maintained that Titusrefused to be crowned for his victory over the Jews.
However, we are still to reckon Philostratus, at the beginning of the third century, a good witness to the overthrow of Jerusalem by Titus.
These are early heathen authors, who have related the destruction of Jerusalem, and thereby bore testimony to the accomplishment of our Lord's predictions concerning it.
Nor can any forget the triumphal arch of Titus, still standing at Rome, of which we before took notice.
* There is also an ancient inscription to the honour of Titus, who, by his father's directions • and counsels, had subdued the Jewishi nation, and destroyed Jerusalem, which had never been • destroyed by any princes or people before.'
Which has occasioned some learned men to say that even inscriptions are not free from: flattery. But then it must be owned that the genuineness and antiquity of this inscription has been called in question: and there are some reasons to doubt whether this comes from the senate: of Rome itself, as is pretended.
* Επει δε Τιτος ήρηκει τα Σολυμα, και νεκρων πλεα ην παντα, cujus nulla fuerint in 1stis patrandis proprie νires, sese exsti.. τα όμορα τε εθνη εςεφανον αυτον. Ο δε εκ ηξια εαυτον τοτε μη tisse agnoscens, &c. Olear, in loc. γαρ αυτον ταυτα ειργασθαι, θεω δε οργην φηναντι επεδεδωκεναι
Imp. Tito. Cæsari. Divi. Vespasiani. F. tas EAUTY Xeipas. x. a. Philos. de Vit. Apol. 1. 6. cap. 29.
Vespasiano. Aug. Pontifici. Maximo 6 Modestiam Titi laudibus effert Baronius, quod, ' oblatâ i
Trib. Pot. X. Imp. xvii. Cos. viii. P. P: sibi coronâ aureâ a provinciis, noluit coronari, testatus se
Principi. suo, S. P.Q.R. prorsus indignum. Usserins, aliique eruditi illud et ipsum
Quod. Præceptis. Patris. Cousiliisque. et tradunt, freti auctoritate Philostrati. Basnag. Ann. 70,
Auspiciis. Gentem. Judæorum. Domuit. Eti • Quem tamen Josephi locum immerito Philostrato opponi
Urbem. Hierosolymam. Omnibus. Ante. Se putem.Neqae enim Philostratus 'repudiâsse coronam'
Ducibus. Regibus. Gentibusque. aut. Frustra
Petitam. aut. omnino. Intentatam. Delevit: Titum ait, atque eâ non acceptâ legatos dimisisse, quod viro docto interpretes persuasere, sed hoc tantum, quod eo honore
Ap. Gruter. p. 244. . se indignum dixerit;. justitiæ Dei vindicatricis instrumentum, Ap. Gruter. Ib:
e Ubi steterit, ignoratur. Scaliger vult ab Onufrio fictum.
C IH Α Ρ. ΙV,
THREE PARAGRAPHS IN THE WORKS OF JOSEPHUS CONCERNING JOHN THE BAPTIST, OUR SAVIOUR, AND JAMES, THE LORD'S BROTHER; AND OBSERVATIONS
UPON THE WRITINGS OF JOSEPHUS.
I. Of John the Baptist. II. Concerning the Lord Jesus Christ. III. Concerning James, the
Lord's Brother. IV. Concluding observations upon the writings and testimony of Josephus.
I. · About this time,” says · Josephus, there happened a difference between Aretas king of • Petræa and Herod upon this occasion. Herod the tetrarch had married the daughter of
Aretas, and lived a considerable time with her. But, in a journey he took to Rome, he made, “ a visit to • Herod his brother, though not by the same mother-Here falling in love with • Herodias, wife of the same Herod, daughter of their brother Aristobulus, and sister of Agrippa • the great, he ventured to make to her proposals of marriage. She pot disliking them, they • agreed together at that time, that when he was returned from Rome she should go and live « with him. And it was one part of the contract, that Aretas's daughter should be put away. • This was the beginning of the difference; and there being also some disputes about the limits • of their territories, a war arose between Aretas and Herod. And in a battle fought by them • Herod's whole army was defeated.' • But,' says Josephus,
Josephus, some of the Jews were of opinion that God had suffered Herod's army to be destroyed as a just punishment on him for the death of John, called the Baptist. • For Herod had killed him, who was a just man, and had called upon the Jews to be baptized,
and to practise virtue, exercising both justice toward men and piety toward God. For só * would baptism be acceptable to God, if they made use of it, not for the expiation of their sins, .but for the purity of the body, the mind being first purified by righteousness. And many coming to him (for they were wonderfully taken with his discourses), Herod was seized with apprehensions, lest by his authority they should be led into sedition against him; for they * seemed capable of undertaking any thing by his direction. Herod therefore thought it better 'to take him off before any disturbance happened, than to run the risk of a change of affairs, and of repenting when it should be too late to remedy disorders. Being taken up upon this suspicion of Herod, and being sent bound to the castle of Machærus, just mentioned, he was • slain there. The Jews were of opinion that the destruction of Herod's army was a punishment upon him for that action, God being displeased with him.'
The genuineness of this passage is generally admitted by learned men; though • Blondell hesitated
about it. Tanaquil Faber' received it very readily: The genuineness of this paragraph may be argued in the following manner. It is quoted or referred to by Origen in his books against Celsus. • Besides,' s says that
• Αntig. 1. 18. cap. v. sect. 1.
αλλ' εφ' αγνεια τα σωματος, ατε δη και της ψυχης δικαιοσυνη Our evangelists call him Philip, Matt. xiv. 3, and else- προεκκεκαθαρμενης. Και των αλλων συσρεφομενων και γαρ where. That difficulty was considered formerly. Josephus ηρθησαν επι πλεισαν τη ακροασει των λογων δεισος Ηρωδης το and the evangelists mean the same person, though they call επι τοσον δε αιθανον αυτ8 τοις ανθρωπους μη, επι αποφασει την him by different names. See Vol. i. p. 212, &c.
φεροι, παντα γαρ εωκεσαν συμβολη τη εκεινε αραξοντες πολυ • Ο δε αρχην εχθρας ταυτην ποιησαμενος, περι τε όρων εν τη κρειττον ήγειται, πριν τι νεωτερον εξ αυτα γενεσθαι, προλαβων γη τη Γαμαλιτιδι, και δυναμεως εκατερω συλλεγεισης, εις αναιρείν, η, μεταβολης γενομένης, εις τα πραγματα εμπεσαν πόλεμον καθιςανται και μαχης γενομενης, διεφθαρη σας και μετανοειν. Και ο μεν υποψια τη Ηρωδε δεσμιος εις τον Μαχαι“Ηρωδε σρατος. κ. λ. ib. sect. 1.
ρεντα πεμφθεις, το προειρημενον φρεριον, ταυτη κτιννυται. 4 Τισι δε των Ιεδαιων εδοκεί, ολωλεναι τον Ηριωδε σρατον Τοις δε Ιεδαιος δοξαν, επι τιμαρια τη εκεινο τον ολεθρον επι τω υπο τ8 Θεε, και μαλα δικαιως τιννύμεν8 κατα ποινην Ιωαννε το Κρατευματι γενεσθαι, τ8 Θει κακως 'Ηρωδη θελόντος. Ιb. επικαλεμενε Βαπτισ8. Κτεινει γαρ τετον Ηρωδης, αγαθον sect. 2. ανδρα, και τες Ιωδαιας κελευοντα, αρετην επασκBντας, και τη • Des Sibylles. 1. 1, C. vii. p. 28, 29. προς αλληλες δικαιοσυνη και προς τον Θεον ευσεβεια χρωμενες, * Fab. ap. Haverc. p. 269, 170. βαπτισμα συνιεναι· ετω γαρ βαπτισιν αποδεκτην αυτω και Εζελομην δ' αν Κελσω, προσωποιησαντι τον Ιεδαιον παραφανεισθαι, μη επι τινων αμαρταδων παραιτησει χρωμενων, δεξαμενον πως Ιωαννης ως βαπτισης, βαπτιζοντα τον Ιησεν,
ancient writer, I would have Celsus, who personates a Jew, who after a sort admits John the * Baptist, and that he baptized Jesus, to consider that an author, who wrote not long after • the time of John, and Jesus, says that John was a baptist, and that he baptized for the • remission of sins. For in the eighteenth book of his Jewish Antiquities Josephus bears witness * to John that he was a baptist, and promised purification to those who were baptized.”
Here it may be objected that Origen supposes Josephus to say, that John promised purification, or forgiveness of sins to those who were baptized: whereas Josephus says of John, that · he * taught the people to make use of baptism, not for the expiation of their sins, but for the purity • of the body.'
But I do not think that a sufficient reason why we should hesitate to allow that Origen refers to the passage which we now have in Josephus. Certainly Origen did not design to say, or intimate, that John promised to men the forgiveness of their sins barely upon their being baptized; but only upon the condition that they repented, or, as the phrase is in the gospels, that " they brought forth fruits meet for repentance:” or, as in Josephus, the mind being first purified by righteousness.' I therefore proceed.
This passage of Josephus is distinctly and largely quoted by · Eusebius in his Ecclesiastical History.
Jerom also must be allowed to refer to the same in his book of Illustrious Men, though he does it very inaccurately.
This passage was read in Josephus by · Photius, as is apparent.
I do not think it needful for me to refer to any more ancient authors: but I shall consider some difficulties.
Obj. 1. In the first place, it has been said that this passage interrupts the course of the narration.
In answer to which I must say that I do not perceive it: the connexion is very good in my opinion.
Obj. 2. Secondly, it is objected that in the preceding section Machærus is spoken of as subject to Aretas: therefore John the Baptist could not be sent prisoner thither by Herod the tetrarch.
To which I answer. It is there said to be subject to Aretas, father of Herod's wife : TOTE πατρι αυτης υποτελη. . But it is also there said to be in the borders of the government of Aretas and Herod: μεθοριον δε εςι της τε Αρετα και Ηρωδε αρχης.
The history in that very section does not lead us to think that Machærus was in the possession of Aretas, but of Herod. It is thus : · Herod's wife, daughter of Aretas, having discovered • the agreement he had made with Herodias to come and live with him, and having discovered • it before he had notice of her knowledge of the design, she desired him to send her to Machærus, . a place in the borders of the dominions of Aretas and Herod, without informing him of her • intentions. Accordingly Herod sent her thither, as thinking his wife had not perceived any • thing of the affair.' By that means she got to her father.
to her father. But hence, I think, it may be collected that Machærus was not then a part of her father's dominions : for, if it had, her request to be sent thither would have occasioned suspicions in Herod's mind. Moreover, it may be argued, from many things in Josephus, that Machærus was now in the possession of Herod the tetrarch. It belonged to his father, Herod the great, who had both adorned it and fortified it: and it was in the hands of the Jewish people during the time of the war, and was one of the last places that were taken by the Romans after the siege of Jerusalem was over.
Obj. 3. According to our evangelists, the daughter of Herodias obtained the promise of John the Baptist's head at the time of a public entertainment: and it was delivered to her presently. But how could that be done if John was imprisoned at Machærus, at a great distance from Herod's court?
εισειν· τι το Ιωαννην γεγονεναι βαπτισην, εις αφεσιν αμαρτη- b Hic in decimo octavo Antiquitatum libro manifestissime ματων βαπτιζοντα, ανεγραψε τις των μετό και πολυ τα Ιωαννα conftetur, propter magnitudinem signorum Christum a Phaκαι το Ιησε γεγενημενων. Εν γαρ τω οκτωκαιδεκατα της risæis interfectum; et Jobannem Baptistam vere prophetam Ιεδαϊκης αρχαιολογιας ο Ιωσηπος μαρτυρεί τω Ιωαννη ως fuisse. De V. Ι. cap. xiii. βαπτιση γεγενομενω, και καθαρσιον τοις βαπτισαμενοις επαγ- c Cod. 238, p. 972. yanaquerw. Contr. Cels. I. 1. sect. 47, p. 35,
d Vid. De B. J. 1. 7, cap. vi. ^ H. E. 1. 1. сар. . xi.
To which I answer, first, that Herod the tetrarch may have kept his birthday and made that entertainment at Machærus; for his father, Herod the great, had built a palace there, with large and beautiful · apartments. Says Tillemont: We learn from Josephus that he was * beheaded at Machærus, where it is easily supposed that Herod made his feast : [Mald. in Matt. . p. 304, a.] for it was a palace as well as a citadel.' Secondly, supposing the entertainment to have been made at the capital city of Galilee, the promise might be made at the time of the entertainment, but the execution might be deferred till the next day, or till several days after.
Obj. 4. Still it may be said that this paragraph.contradicts our evangelists: for according to them, it was at the solicitation of Herodias and her daughter that John was beheaded. But Aiere it is said that Herod put John to death because he feared he might be the cause of a sedition.
But there is no inconsistence in these things; for Herod might, as is said in this paragraph, have apprehensions from John's popularity, and be disposed, upon that account, to take him off. Lesser differences there may be in several historians, who write of the same matter with different views: and some circumstances may be mentioned by one writer which are omitted by others.
I shall give an instance from the writings of the New Testament: Acts ix. 22–25. “ But Saul increased the more in strength, and confounded the Jews which dwelt at Damascus, proving that this is very Christ. And after that many days were fulfilled, the Jews took counsel to kill him; but their lying in wait was known to Saul: and they watched the gates day and night to kill him. Then the disciples took him by night, and let him down by the wall in a basket.” So says St. Luke. Let us now observe St. Paul himself. 2 Cor. xi. 31–33. “ The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is blessed for evermore, knoweth that I lie not. In Damascus the governor, under Aretas the king, guarded the city of the Damascenes, desirous to apprehend me; and through a window in a basket was I let down by the wall, and escaped him."
St. Luke and St. Paul write of the same thing, as is apparent, and is allowed by all commentators and ecclesiastical historians: nevertheless, here is a very considerable difference of circumstances. St. Paul says nothing of the Jews, and St. Luke says nothing of the governor of Damascus. But we can conclude from St. Paul that the Jews had engaged the governor in their interest, who, with the soldiers, kept strict guard at all the gates of the city: but there was a window or opening in some part of the wall, to which his friends had access; and through that they let him down by the side of the wall, in a basket held by a rope, and he escaped. The danger was very pressing, and the apostle was much affected with it.
So far from contradicting the evangelists, this account in the paragraph greatly confirms them. In the preceding paragraph Josephus assures us of the unlawful contract made by Herod, that Herodias should leave her first husband and come and live with him. In this paragraph he gives an account of John's doctrine, very agreeable to that in the gospels—that he earnestly recommended the practice of righteousness toward men, and piety toward God; that he taught men not to rely on baptism, or any other external rites, for the forgiveness of their sins, unless their minds were also purified by righteousness: and he assures us that John was in great esteem with the Jewish people. The same is also said by our evangelists, who tell us that “all men held John for a prophet.” He likewise says that John, called the Baptist, was imprisoned by Herod, and afterwards put to death by his order.
We may be the more induced to admit the genuineness of this paragraph, because there is nothing in it out of character. Josephus did not receive our Jesus as the Christ: nor is there here any mention made of that part of John's character, that he was the forerunner of the Christ, or referred men to him. : There may have been many Jews who had a great regard for John, and yet did not believe in Jesus as the Christ. St. Paul met with twelve Jews of that sort at Ephesus, about the year
of our Lord 53, as appears from a history at the beginning of Acts xix. “ He said unto them: Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? They said unto him: We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost. And he said unto them: Unto what then were ye baptized ? And they said: Unto John's baptism. Then said Paul: John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people that they should believe on bino which should come after him; that is, on Christ Jesus.” These men had received John's baptism as
* Μεσον δε το περιβολά βασιλείον ωκοδομησατο, μεγεθει τε και καλλει των οικησεων πολυτελες. κ. λ. De B. J. 1. 7, c. vi. sect. 2:
S. Jean Battiste, art. viii. p. 101. Mem. Ec. T. i.
the baptism of repentance, but they had not attended to that other part of his preaching, that “ they should believe on him who came after him," till they were reminded of it by St. Paul ; and then they were presently satisfied. “When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.” And what follows.
Possibly those men, or most of them, had seen and heard John, and been baptized by him ; and left Judea before Jesus had begun his public ministry: and being at a distance from the land of Judea, had never had any distinct account of the transactions there: but now being informed of them, and being open to conviction, they became disciples of Jesus, and believed in him as the Christ.
But many other Jews, not so well disposed, might stand out. They might retain a great respect for John, as we suppose Josephus to have done, as an holy man of an austere character, who had recommended the practice of virtue, and had been put to death by the tetrarch of Galilee, without believing in Jesus as the Christ.
Origen was well acquainted with the Jewish sentiments, having often conversed with their learned men. And in his answer to Celsus, he puts him in mind that “the · Jews always make - a difference between John and Jesus, and between the death of each of them.'
Indeed both were for a while in great repute with the Jewish people. But Jesus had greatly disappointed them in not assuming the character of a temporal prince, as they expected the Messiah should have done. And John was put to death by a prince not much beloved: but Jesus was crucified at the importunate demand of the Jewish rulers and people in general.
Josippon, in the ninth or tenth century, though he says nothing of Jesus Christ, or James, the Lord's brother, mentions the death of John the Baptist, and more agreeably to the evangelists than this passage of Josephus which we are considering. He represents the tetrarch Herod as a very wicked prince. He says, that he took to himself
, to be his own wife, the wife of « his brother Philip, though his brother was still living, and she had children by him. He killed * many wise men in Israel: and he killed that great priest John, the baptizer, because he had • said to him, “ it is unlawful for thee to have thy brother's wife.'' Many Jews, as it seems, have respected John the Baptist as an eminently good man, without allowing him to have any connexions with Jesus Christ.
II. In the same eighteenth book of Josephus's Jewish Antiquities, but in a chapter preceding that in which is the account of John the Baptist, just considered, is this paragraph.
• At that time lived Jesus, a wise man, if he may be called a man; for he performed many * wonderful works. He was a teacher of such men as received the truth with pleasure. He • drew over to him many Jews and Gentiles. This was the Christ.. And when Pilate, at the
instigation of the chief men among us, had condemned him to the cross, they who before had • conceived an affection for him did not cease to adhere to him. For on the third day he • appeared to them alive again, the divine prophets having foretold these and many other won• derful things concerning him. And the sect of the Christians, so called from him, subsists to * this time.'
This passage is received by d many learned men as genuine; by others * it is rejected as an interpolation. It is allowed on all hands that it is in all the copies of Josephus's works, now extant, both printed and manuscript : nevertheless, it may be for several reasons called in question. They are such as these.
1. This paragraph is not quoted nor referred to by any Christian writers before Eusebius, who flourished at the beginning of the fourth century and afterwards.
αναγκαιον αυτω παρατησαι, ότι και τοτο ουκ οικειως *Ο Χρισος έτος ην. Και αυτον ενδειξει την πρωτων ανδρων τω Ιεδαϊκό προσωπω περιεθηκεν. Ουδε γαρ συναστασι τον παρ' ημιν, σαυρω ειιτετιμηκοτος Πιλατε, εκ επαυσαντο οίγε Ιωαννης οι Ιεδαιοι τω Ιησω, και την Ιωαννε τη το 1ησε κολασει. αρωτoν αυτον αγαπησαντες. Εφανη γαρ αυτους τριτην εχων Contr. Cels. I. i. cap. 48. p. 38.
ημεραν παλιν ζων, των θειων προφητων ταυτα τε και αλλα μυρια Epse accepit uxorem Philippi fratris sui adhuc viventis in θαυμασια περι αυτο ειρηκοτων. Εις ετι νυν των Χριστιανων απο uxorem, licet illa haberet filios ex fratre ejus: eam, inquam, Tode wrouaouaywy oux EWENIWE to quaoy. Antiq. Jud. I. 18. accepit sibi in uxorem. Occidit autem multos sapientes cap. iii. sect. 3. Israël. Occidit etiam Jochanan Sacerdotem magnum, ob id Cav. H. L. in Josepho. Huet. Dem. Ev. Prop. iii. p. 32, quod dixerat ei: Non licet tibi accipere uxorem fratris tui &c. Fab. Bib. Gr. l. 4. cap. vi. Tom. 3. Whiston in his first Philippi in uxorem. Occidit ergo Jochananem Baptistam. dissertation. Spanhem. Öpp. T. i. p. 531. Tillem. Ruine Josipp. I. 6. cap. 63. p. 274,
des Juifs, art. 81, and note xl. H. E. Tom. i. Γινεται δε κατα τ8τον τον χρονον Ιησες, σοφος ανήρ, είχε e J. Ittigii Prolegom. ap. Havercamp. p. 89. Blondel des ardpa AUTOY deyelv xon. Hy yap wapa do Ewe spywe wouygns, Sibylles. p. 18. Tan. Fabr. ap. Havercamp. p. 267, &c. διδασκαλος ανθρωπων των ηδονη τ' αληθη δεχομενων. Και Cleric. Η. Ε. Αn. 25. 2. iv. et Ars Crit. p. 3. cap. xiv. πολλές μεν Ιεδαιες, πολλές δε και το Ελληνικο εφηγαγετο. VOL. III.