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the Jews appropriated to these Chaldee paraphrases; for being among them what were most eminently such, they therefore had this name by way of eminency especially given to them.
* These Targums were made for the use and instruction of the vulgar Jews after their return from the Babylonish captivity ; for, although many of the better sort still retained the knowledge of ihe Hebrew language during that captivity, and taught it their children, and the Holy Scriptures that were delivered after that time, excepting only some parts of Daniel and Ezra, and one verse in Jeremiah, were all written therein; yet the common people, by having so long conversed with the Babylonians, learned their language, and forgot their own. It happened indecd otherwise to the children of Israel in Egypt; for, although they lived there above three times as long as the Babylonish captivity lasted, yet they still preserved the Hebrew language among them, and brought it back entire with them into Canaan. The reason of this was, in Egypt they all lived together in the land of Goshen ; but on their being carried captive by the Babylonians, they were dispersed all over Chaldea and Assyrra, and, being there intermixed with the people of the land, had their main converse with them, and therefore were forced to learn their language; and this soon induced a disuse of their own among them; by which means it came to pass, that, after their return, the common people, especially those of them who had been bred up in that captivity, understood not the Holy Scriptures in the Hebrew language, nor their posterity after them. And therefore, when Ezra read the law to the people, he had several persons standing by him well skilled in both the Chaldee and Hebrew languages, who interpreted to the people in Chaldee what he first read to them in Hebrew. And afterwards, when
the method was established of dividing the law into 54 sections, and of reading one of them every week in their synagogues, the same course of reading to the people the Hebrew text first, and then interpreting it to them in Chaldee, was still continued. For, when the reader had read one verse in Hebrew, an interpreter standing by did render it into Chaldee; and then the next verse being read in Hebrew, it was in like manner interpreted in the same language as before; and so on from verse to verse was every verse alternately read first in the Hebrew, and then interpreted in Chaldee to the end of the section ; and this first gave occasion for the making of Chaldee versions for the help of these interpreters. And they thenceforth became necessary not only for their help in the public synagogues, but also for the help of the people at home in their families, that they might there have the Scriptures for their private reading in a language which they understood.
“ This work having been attempted by divers persons at different times, and by some of them with dif. ferent views (for some of them were written as versions for the public use of the synagogues, and others as paraphrases and commentaries for the private instruction of the people,) hence it hath come to pass, that there were anciently many of these Targums, and of different sorts, in the same manner as there anciently were many different versions of the same Holy Scriptures into the Greek language, made with like different views ; of which we have sufficient proof in the Octalpa of Origen. No doubt, anciently there were many more of these Targums than we now know of, which have been lost in the length of time. Whether there were any of them of the same composure on the whole Scriptures is not any where said. Those that are now remaining were composed by different persons, and on different parts of Scripture,
some on one part, and others on other parts; and are, in all, of these eight sorts following. i. That of Onkelos on the five books of Moses; 2. That of Jona· than Ben Uzziel on the prophets, that is, on Joshua, Judges, the two books of Samuel, the two books of Kings, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and the twelve minor prophets; 3. That on the law, which is ascribed to Jonathan Ben Uzziel; 4. The Jerusalem Targum on the law ;-5. The Targum on the five lesser books,
called the Megilloib, i.e. Ruth, Escher, Ecclesiastes, | the Song of Solomon, and the Lamentations of Jere
miah; 6. The second Targum on Esther; 7. The Targum of Joseph, the one-eyed, on the book of Job, the Psalms, and ibe Proverbs; and, 8. The 'Targum on the first and second book of Chronicles. On Ezra, Nehemiah, and Daniel, there is no Targum at all.
The reason given by some for this is, because a great į part of those books is written in the Chaldee lan
guage, and therefore there is no need of a Chaldee paraphrase upon them. This indeed is true for Daniel and Ezra, but not for Nehemiah; for that book is all originally written in the Hebrew language. No doubt, anciently there were Chaldee paraphrases on all the Hebrew parts of those books, though now lost. It was long supposed that there were no Targums on
the two books of Chronicles, because none such were - known, till they were lately published by Beckius,
at Augsburg in Germany, that on the first book A. D. 1680, and that on the second in 1683."
Having given this abridged account of the Tar'gums, let us attend to what men quote from them, in proof that Gehenna, in the New Testament, is used to express a place of endless misery for all the wicked. It is very natural for one 10 conclude, that the quotations made would be given us at length, and that they would be full and explicit in establishing this docirine. We have been ai some pains, to col:
xxiii. 10. a place of abominable filthiness and pollu-. cap. I. what they have said, but merely says, that the word withe
lect from men who have had access to such scarce welt books, to see and judge for ourselves concerning what I they produced from them in proof. The following, andre is all we have seen quoted from them, to prove that 10b Gehenna or hell signifies a place of endless misery. She repe Mr. Parkhurst on the word Gehenna, thus writes, credi “From this valley's having been the scene of those saliam infernal sacrifices, and probably loo from its contin-- Par uing after the time of Josiah’s reformation, 2 Kings as feet tion ; the Jews in our Saviour's time used the com- klered pound word ge enm, for hell, the place of the damned. aleks This appears from that word's being thus applied by Ribeing the Chaldee Targums on Ruth ii. 12. Psalm cxl. 12. * in Isai. xxvi. 1–5. and xxxiii. 14. and by the Jerusalem lem Targums, and that
Ben Uzziel. Gen. aid the iii. 24. and xv. 17. Compare 2 Esdras ii. 29.” It ought to be noticed here, that. Parkhurst does not delete quote one word from these Targums to let us see Gehenna is used for the place of the damned in cera tain places in the Targums, on some texts in the Old Testament to which he refers. Let any one turn 10. those texts and he will see, that Gehenna does not occur in one of them. Yea, it is difficult to perceive how any man could introduce the doctrine of hell torments in speaking of them. The only exception to this is Isai. xxxii. 14. a text we have considered in chap. ii. sect. 3. In whatever way the Targumists speak of Gehenna in those texts, it is certain that nothing said in the texts themselves afforded them the Jeast occasion to say that Gehenna was the place of the danned. At any rate we ought to have seen what they have said, that we might judge of the evidence they have adduced, for ourselves. On a subject like the one before us, it affords no satisfaction to give us a volume of such kind of proof. I shall
also quote the following from Whitby on Mark ix. 43, 44.—" That Gehenna was by the Jews still looked on and represented as the place in which the wicked were to be tormented by fire: so the Jerusalem Targum represents Gehenna which is prepared for the wicked in the world to come, as a furnace sparkling and flaming with fire, into which the wicked fall. And the Targum upon Ecclesiastes speaks of the fire of hell, Eccles. ix. 15. of the sparks of the fire of hell
, chap. x. 11. And of the wicked, who shall go to be burned in hell, chap. viii. 10. Accordingly our : Lord speaks, verse xlvii. and Matth. v. 22. of the wicked being cast into the fire of hell, and of their being cast into a furnace of fire, Matth. xiii. 42.”_ He adds, The ancient Jews held that the punishment of the wicked in hell should be perpetual or without end. So Judith saith that they shall weep under the sense of their pains forever, chap. xvi. 17. Josephus informs us that the Pharisees held that the souls of the wicked were to be punished with perpetual punishment, and that there was appoinied for them a perpetual prison. Philo saith the punishment of the wicked person is to live forever dying; and to be forever in pains and griefs, and calamities that never cease.” The same remarks which have just been made on the quotation from Parkhurst nearly apply with the same force to the one just quoted from Whitby. We are not furnished with the passages at i length, but mere scraps of expressions are afforded
us. Yea, in the first of his statement he quotes or rather refers to the Jerusalem Targum, but does not say what place in it we are to find any thing about this. Such a mode of quotation from the Targums or any other books might just as well be spared, if they are made for the purpose of proving any thing with a view to convince the reader.