« AnteriorContinuar »
TW EL VE
Confusion of Languages.
To which is Added,
sage through the Red Sea, By another Hand.
Ornari res ipfa negat, contenta docere. Hor.
Export 12.4-51 . 76940
(HE following Dissertations con
tain sucb Variety of Learning, and Liberty of Thought, out of the common road of Commenta
tors, and Divines (who generally confine themselves withix the Rules and Pale of the Church that the Publishing of them in
English was thought necesary for the instructing and polishing of those, who imploy their happy Hours in the Study of the Holy Scriptures. 'Tis true, Two very Reverend Prelates of our own Church have lately treated of these Matters not without Refletting on the Author Mr. Le Clerk; yet 'tis no ill manners to cloath him in the same
Language, that the Justice and Reason of their Contempt and Accusations may the more clearly appear.
I am not insensible of the many Calumnies fixt on the Learned Author upon the account of these Differtations, and the Leiters be formerly Publish'd concerning Inspiration, and the Lives of fome Fathers, yet his late Treatise of the Causes of Incredulity, and the Truth of Christianity, hath disipated all those Aspersions, and demonstrates to the World, that he could never give any occasion to Infidels or vnbelievers to insult the fimplicity of the Gospel, or the Lines of the Church ; 'tis maliciously fuggested, that he hath forgot to reckon his own Writings amongst his many Causes of Deism, and Scepticism; for tho in his Juvenile Pajtimes at Saumur, and Geneva, be might sow some wild Tares, and run beyond the bounds of Discretion in Matters of Faith; yet by culture and ripeness of years, he arriv’d at that strength and presence of mind, that all his Productions became 'chaste, and very charming, insomuch that the Il. lustrious City of Amsterdam adopted him into the Number of ber Professors, where he adorns the Oriental Chair, and deserves to shine in a more Noble Sphere; but the climate, we live in, is too grofs to receive such a fine and exalted Genius, born to illuminate the dark Mysteries of Antiquity, and to let us into the Sanctum Sarictorum; for certainly never any Mortal came
better prepar’d to unvail the Beauty of the Scriptures; many great Endowments meeting in him; a fingular Penetration, vast reading and Study, a profound skill in the Languages with an universal erudition, a clear. Judgment, an honest Candor, and a Sublimity above Party or Faštion ; Talents not very common among Those who have the Honour to unlock those Venerable Archives :
The Bible without dispute contains more good Morals, and more hidden Treasures than all the Volumes of the Alexandrian, the Vatican, or Bodleian Libraries, and therefore our Libertines have no reason to deride the pains taken to open them.
But some cry out aloud, there lurks a Snake under the Grass, and Venom sprouts out of the Mouth of t be tempting Serpent ; Beware of his winding Infinuations, and bis gentile Turnings. Ob incurable Jealousie! that will not distinguish between Superstition and Religion, between Godliness, and Gain, or between the Ancient and Modern Christianity. A Man must be of a very fower habit of Body, that will not bear an innocent Freedom, especially in an Age and Kingdom, where Nullius in Verba is the Motto. ...
Criticks and Philosophers have always claim'd a particular fort of Liberty, and Boldness, which the wisest States' have thought fit to dispense with; for Truth is not eahly come at, many rubs and thorns lying in the way, so that few work