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5. There is no where any probable account, who translated this gospel into Greek. No particular translator was mentioned by Papias, as may be concluded from the accounts given of his books by Eusebius. Nor is any translator of this gospel named by Irenæus, Eusebius, or any of the writers of the first three centuries, that are come down to us. Nor is there any reason to think, that he was named in any other: forasmuch as no notice is taken of him by Eusebius, or Jerom, who saw many writings of ancients now lost, both catholics and heretics. Jerom having said, that Matthew wrote in Hebrew, presently adds: Who w ' afterwards translated him into Greek, is uncertain.' And all the accounts of a translator, since given, are too late to be credited, and are likewise very improbable. In the Synopsis, ascribed to Athanasius, but not written till long after his time, it is said, 'That Matthew's gospel was translated into Greek by James, the first bishop of Jerusalem.' Which is very improbable. It would be more reasonable to imagine, that he translated it out of Greek into Hebrew. But as that is not said by the ancients, so neither have we reason to say it. Moreover, the same reasons, as one may think, which would induce James to make a Greek translation, should have induced Matthew to write in Greek. Nevertheless Dr. Milly has pitched upon that person for the translator, and formed an argument thereupon which only serves to show, that there is nothing, for which something may not be said by those who indulge themselves in suppositions without ground. Theophylact informs us, that in his time it was said, that John translated this gospel into Greek but it was only a common report; and indeed it could be no more. However, out of a regard to such reports and testimonies, Mr Lampe has very properly


* Ibid. p. 165.

'w Vol. iv. ch. cxiv. num. viii. 1. y Quis in Græcum transfuderit, incertum est. Papias de hoc nihil ab Aristione aut Joanne presbytero accepit, aut tradidit. Auctor Synopseos S. Scripturæ Jacobo fratri Domini diserte adscribit hanc versionem; Theophylactus, ex famâ duntaxat, Joanni evangelista. Ego ad priorem illam sententiam, ceu magis verisimilem, accedo. Satis enim probabile est, evangelium in Hebræorum usum linguâ ipsorum patriâ primum exaratum, ab ipsorum episcopo primario Jacobo, episcopo Hierosolymitano, in sermonem Græcum per provincias, in quas dispersi erant ex gente istâ plurimi, Judæis pariter ac aliis in usu familiari, translatum fuisse, &c. Proleg. num. 66.

* Μετέφρασε δε τετο Ιωάννης απο της Εβραϊδος γλωττης εις την Ελληνίδα, wc AEy8o. Theoph. Pr. in Matt. p. 2. D.

Matthæi evangelium Græce a Joanne evangelistâ versum esse, refert Eutychius, tom. I. Annalium, p. 328. et Nicetas præfatione ad Catenam in Matthæum. Lampe, Prolegom. in Joan. 1. i. cap. 7. num. 31.

reckoned a translation of this gospel among the works falsely ascribed to St. John.

6. Once more, I apprehend, we may discern the origin of this opinion, that St. Matthew's gospel was written in Hebrew. There was soon made a translation of his Greek gospel into Hebrew. We have seen proofs, that in very early days of christianity there was a Hebrew gospel: and many, not examining it particularly, nor indeed being able to do it, for want of understanding the language, imagined that it was first written in Hebrew. Jerom expressly tells us, that by many in his time the gospel according to the Hebrews was reckoned the true and authentic gospel of Matthew.


To this Hebrew translation of St. Matthew's gospel, possibly, are owing divers things said by the ancients as that Matthew published his gospel at Jerusalem, or in Judea, for the Jewish believers, and at their request, before he went abroad to other people: I say, I do suspect the truth of these, and some other like things, said of St. Matthew, and his gospel all which may have had their rise from the Hebrew edition of his gospel, which they imagined to be the original. For I think, that St. Matthew's, and all the other gospels, were written, and intended, for believers of all nations. His gospel was written for the Jews, but not for them only, but for Gentiles also: as manifestly appears from the gospel itself, or the things contained in it.

I am also ready to say, with Mr. Basnage, that I do not know where it was published, whether in Judea, or somewhere else. But as I think the Nazarene gospel to be St. Matthew's gospel translated from Greek, with the addition of some other things, taken from the other gospels, and from tradition: so I reckon, that the gospel of Matthew, written in Greek, was the gospel which came first into their

b See Vol. ii. p. 165.

In evangelio, quo utuntur Nazareni et Ebionitæ, quod nuper in Græcum de Hebræo sermone transtulimus, et quod vocatur a plerisque Matthæi authenticum. Hier. in Matth. cap. xii. T. iv. P. i. p. 47.

In evangelio juxta Hebræos-quo utuntur usque hodie Nazareni, secundum apostolos, sive, ut plerique, juxta Matthæum. Adv. Pelag. 1. 3. sub in T. iv. p. 533.

d Annum tamen perinde atque locum, ubi a Matthæo conditum est, in incerto esse, facile patimur. Ann. 64. num. xii.


Distinguendum enim inter hoc evangelium, quale initio fuit, et illud, quale paullatim fiebat, Nazaræis varia addentibus-Primitus nihil habuit, nisi quod in Græco nunc legimus-Porro Nazaræi pluscula suis locis interseruerunt, quæ ab apostolis vel apostolicis viris fando accepissent. G. J. Voss. De Geneal. J. C. cap. ii, num. i.

hands, and which they gladly received, and made use of it. I say again, the notion of St. Matthew's writing in Hebrew, probably had its rise from the Hebrew edition of his gospel. For, allowing that date of his gospel which to me appears, most probable, I cannot conceive the reason, why Matthew should write in Hebrew any more than any of the other evangelists. For it may be reckoned highly probable, or even certain, that he understood Greek, before he was called by Christ to be an apostle. Whilst a publican, he would have frequent occasions both to write and speak Greek; and could not discharge his office without understanding that language.

This Hebrew gospel may likewise have been the cause, why so many ancient christian writers say, that Matthew wrote first. This may be true: but I do not think it was said upon the ground of any certain knowledge, or good information. I apprehend it not to be easy to say, which gospel was first written, for all the first three gospels were written about the same time: and St. Luke's, for any thing that I know, may have been written first; which was the opinion of Mr. Basnage.


Of the time when the apostles left Judea to go and preach the gospel in other countries.

AS many ancient christian writers, whom we have lately. quoted, say, that St. Matthew, having preached some while in Judea, was desired by the believers there to leave with them in writing, before he went away, a history of what he had taught by word of mouth: this may not be an improper place to inquire, how long it was after the ascension of Jesus, before Matthew and the other apostles left Judea, to go abroad into foreign countries.

And first of all, we will observe some remarkable passages of ancient writers, relating to this matter. And then, secondly, we will consider what light the book of the Acts may afford upon this subject.

Člement of Alexandria, about 194, quotes from a work,

Ann. 60. num. 31.


entitled the Preaching of Peter, this passage: • There'fore Peter says, that the Lord said to the apostles; If any Israelite will repent, and believe in God through my name, his sins shall be forgiven. After twelve years go ye out into the world, that none may say, We have not 'heard.'



The next passage is that of Apollonius, undoubtedly in part cotemporary with Clement, and placed by Cave at the year 192, by me at 211, as near the time of his writing against the Montanists. Moreover, says Eusebius, he re'lates as from tradition, that our Saviour commanded his apostles not to depart from Jerusalem for the space of 'twelve years.' Which passage has been already cited in this work.

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By these two passages Cave was induced to think, that a for twelve years after Christ's ascension the apostles did not depart from the neighbourhood of Jerusalem. Supposing our Saviour to have been crucified, and to have ascended to heaven in the year 29 of the vulgar æra, which was a common opinion of the ancients, these twelve years ended in the year 41. Supposing those great events to have happened in the year 33, which is a common opinion of learned moderns, those twelve years would reach to the year 45.

Beside those two passages alleged by Cave, and other learned men, I shall take notice of some others also.

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Origen says in general, That when the Jews did not ' receive the word, the apostles went to the Gentiles.'

Chrysostom, in a homily upon Acts xi. 19, and what follows, speaks to this purpose. They heard that Samaria had received the word, and they sent Peter and John. They heard what had happened at Antioch, and they sent 'Barnabas; for that was at a great distance. And it was not fit that the apostles should go so far as yet, lest they 'should have been esteemed deserters, and thought to have

* Δαι τετο φησιν ὁ Πετρος ειρηκεναι τον Κυριον τοις αποτόλοις Εαν μεν εν τις θέληση τε Ισραηλ μετανοησαι [forte μετανοήσας] δια τε ονόματος με πιςεύειν εις τον Θεον, αφεθήσονται αυτῳ ἁμαρτιαι. Μετα δωδεκα ετη εξέλθετε εις κόσμον, μη τις ειπη" Ουκ ηκέσαμεν. Clem. Str. 1. 6. p. 636. Conf. Cav. H. L. T. I.-5. et Grabe, Spic. T. I. p. 67.

bH. E. 1. 5. cap. 18. p. 136.

d Hist. Lit. T. i. p. 5. et 13.


c Vol. ii. p. 393.

μη παραδεξαμενων Ιεδαίων τον λογον, απεληλυθεσαν εις τα έθνη. In Matth. T. i. p. 225. E. Huet.

• Πολυ γαρ το διατημα, και εκ εδει τις αποτολές τεως χωρίσθηναι εκειθεν. να μη νομισθωσιν ειναι φυγαδες, και τις αυτων πεφευγέναι τότε αναγκαίως χορίζονται, οτε λοιπον ανιατα εχειν εδοκει τα κατ' αυτές.

tom. ix. p. 202, 203.

In Act. hom. 25.

'fled from their own people. But it then became necessary 'for them to separate, [or go from thence,] when the Jews 'showed themselves to be incurable.'



In the Paschal Chronicle are these expressions, speaking of Paul. Afterwards he coming to Jerusalem with Bar'nabas, and finding there Peter and the rest of the apostles, with James the Lord's brother, the apostles send an epistle 'to Antioch in Syria, establishing their church. And Paul and Barnabas carry the epistle to Antioch, as the Acts 'show. By this it appears, that the apostles then wrote their catholic epistles before their dispersion.'

Such are the passages of ancient writers, which must be reckoned to be of some weight.

Let us now observe the history in the Acts. And it seems to me, there is reason to conclude, that the apostles stayed in Judea, till after the council at Jerusalem, of which an account is given in the xvth chapter of that book. For St. Luke does continually speak of the apostles, as being at Jerusalem, or near it. Acts viii. 1; "And at that time, there was a great persecution against the church, which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles." One of those persons, who then left Jerusalem, was Philip the deacon and evangelist: who went to Samaria, and preached Christ unto them, and with good effect. Whereupon, at ver. 14, "Now when the apostles, which were at Jerusalem, heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John." This needs no comment. Here is proof, that when the rest of the disciples were scattered abroad, Peter and John, and the other apostles, were still at Jerusalem.

In Acts ix. 26-30, is St. Luke's account of Paul's coming to Jerusalem, after his conversion: where he says, "that the disciples were afraid of him—But Barnabas took him, and brought him to the apostles." St. Paul, speaking of the same journey, Gal. i. 18, 19, says: "Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days. But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord's brother." Here we find, that at this time, three years after his conversion, Paul saw two

8 Μετέπειτα ελθων εις Ιεροσολυμα μετα Βαρνάβα, και εύρων Πετρον και τις λοιπές αποτολες άμα Ιακωβῳ τῳ αδελφῳ τε Κύριε, γράφουσιν επιςολήν οἱ αποτολοι εις Αντιοχειαν της Συρίας, θεμελιώντες την αυτών εκκλησίαν, και διακονεσι την επιτολήν εις Αντιοχειαν αυτος Παυλος και Βαρναβας ως δηλεσιν αἱ Πράξεις. Εκ τοτε δεικνυται, ότι και τας καθολικας αυτων οἱ αποτολοι τότε γραφεσιν, προ της διασπορας αυτών. Chr. Pasch. p. 233. B. C.


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