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because by some other means he was unacquainted with the time and place of them but it was a regard to brevity that induced him to pass them over. They were not necessary to be inserted in his history: without them he has recorded sufficient attestations of Paul's apostolical authority, and of the truth and divine original of the doctrine taught by him.
20. Says St. Paul, unwillingly, and constrained by the disadvantageous insinuations and charges of self-interested and designing men, 2 Cor. xi. 23, "Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool :) I am more. In labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft."
"In prisons more frequent." Therefore before writing this epistle, in the year 57, Paul had been imprisoned several times: though St. Luke has mentioned before this time one imprisonment only, which was at Philippi, Acts xvi. 23-40. Upon which Estius observes, that Paul did and suffered many things not mentioned in the Acts. And Rom. xvi. 7,"Salute Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen and my fellow-prisoners-who also were in Christ before me.' e." Paul was not a prisoner when he wrote the epistle to the Romans, in the beginning of the year 58. But he had been in prison before with those two early christians, his relations but where, or when, we cannot exactly say.
21. Ver. 24, "Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one." Nevertheless St. Luke has not mentioned one of those times. Estius conjectures that Luke omitted these, and many other things, because he was not with the apostle when they happened, and Paul out of modesty forbore to tell him of them. I rather think that Luke was fully acquainted with Paul's history: but he aimed at brevity, and judged the things mentioned by him to be sufficient.
22. Ver. 25, "Thrice was I beaten with rods:" nean▾ De Paulo autem incarcerato ante hanc epistolam, in Actis Apostolorum non legimus quidem, nisi cap. xvi. ubi a Philippensibus in carcerem missus legitur. Sed permulta Paulus et fecit et passus est, quæ in Actis non scribuntur. Est. ad 2 Cor. xi. 23. Porro concaptivos intellige, quod aliquando communia cum Paulo vincula pro Christo passi fuissent. Ubi tamen, aut quando factum sit, ignoratur. Est. ad Rom. xvi. 7.
Sed cur Lucas in Actis ne unius quidem flagellationis ex quinque meminit? Ideo videlicet, quod de Paulo pene ea sola, quibus ipse præsens fuit, sigillatim recenseat; alia vero vel silentio pertranseat, vel summatim ac breviter referat-Qua in re notanda humilitas Pauli, qui suas tot et tam graves pro Christo passiones Lucæ comiti suo non aperuerit, ne hic quidem recitaturus, nisi coëgisset eum amor salutis Corinthiorum. Id. ib. ad ver. 24.
ing, I suppose, by Roman magistrates. But St. Luke has mentioned one instance only of this; which was at Philippi, when Paul and Silas both underwent this hard usage. Acts xvi. 19-40. Of this likewise Estius has taken notice in his Commentary.
"Once was I stoned:" undoubtedly meaning at Lystra in Lycaonia, as related by St. Luke, Acts xiv. 19, 20.
"Thrice I have suffered shipwreck." St. Luke has recorded but one instance, which was not until after this time, in the apostle's voyage from Judea to Rome: Acts xxvii, which therefore must have been the fourth.
"A night and day have I been in the deep." At one of those times I escaped with the utmost difficulty, by getting on a plank, and floating in the sea a night and a day, or a whole day of four and twenty hours.
23. Ver. 26, "In journeyings often, in perils of waters," or rather "rivers." Which are sometimes very dangerous. But St. Luke has not recorded any dangers of the apostle upon rivers, either in crossing them, or sailing upon them.
24. Says Tillemont, in his life of St. Paul: The great-⚫est part of interpreters think, that St. Paul made no voyages, but those which are taken notice of in the Acts.Nevertheless we must necessarily acknowledge, that beside 'what St. Luke informs us of the sufferings of St. Paul, this apostle was five times scourged by the Jews, twice beaten with rods, and thrice shipwrecked. All this happened 'before he wrote his second epistle to the Corinthians; that is, in the time of which St. Luke has written the history. Nevertheless St. Luke says nothing of all this. It is cer'tain therefore, that either he has omitted the circumstances
of the most remarkable events which he relates, or that 'St. Paul made several voyages, of which he has taken 6 no notice.'
25. The reason of St. Luke's silence here I take to be the same that has been already assigned of his silence upon other occasions: it was not necessary that these things should be related. To have written an account of all the apostle's journies and dangers, would have rendered the work more voluminous and prolix than was judged proper. When St. Luke was set about composing and publishing this bTer virgis cæsus sum'-a Gentilibus-Erat enim Romanis consuetudo virgis cædere nocentes-Porro Lucas tantum semel meminit hujus contumeliæ Paulo illatæ, scilicet Act. xvi. ubi scribit eum unà cum Silâ virgis cæsum a Philippensibus. Est. in loc. c. Periculis fluminum'-quæ interdum non minus periculosa sunt navigantibus, quam mare. Est. in loc. d Mem. Ec. T. i. St. Paul, note xviii.
book, he had all the materials before him, and his plan was formed. Agreeably to which he determined to write at large the history of St. Paul's voyage from Judea to Rome, in which are many remarkable incidents, and to omit some other of the apostle's journies and voyages: though divers of them likewise were attended with affecting cir
26. The chapter, from which I have just now transcribed several things, concludes in this manner: Ver. 31-33, "The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is blessed for evermore, knows that I lie not. In Damascus the governor under Aretas the king, kept the city of the Damascenes with a garrison, desirous to apprehend me. And through a window in a basket was I let down by the wall, and escaped his hands."
I have often reflected with great satisfaction on St. Luke's not omitting this dangerous attempt upon the apostle's liberty and life: with which himself was so much affected, and which he has here mentioned with much solemnity. The history of it may be seen in Acts ix. 23-25.
I now proceed to some other things,
27. St. Paul assures us, Gal. ii. 1-3, that when he went up to Jerusalem upon occasion of the debate concerning the manner of receiving Gentile converts, he took Titus with him which is not said by St. Luke, Acts xv. though he gives a particular account of Paul's going from Antioch to Jerusalem upon that occasion. Nor indeed has St. Luke ouce mentioned Titus in his history: though St. Paul wrote an epistle to him, and has mentioned him several times in his epistles sent to others.
28. Gal. ii. 11-21, St. Paul speaks of Peter's being at Antioch, before he and Barnabas had separated: but St. Luke says nothing of it. Jerom, in his Commentary upon the epistle to the Galatians, says: We are not to wonder, that Luke has taken no notice of this. For by the ⚫ usual privilege of historians he has omitted many things performed by Paul, and which we know from
29. Rom. xvi. 3, 4, St. Paul applauds an action of great generosity in Aquila and Priscilla: but St. Luke has not informed us of the place, or occasion of it. Doubtless he did not omit it, for want of respect to those excellent christians, whom he has mentioned more than once, ch. xviii. 18,
• Nec mirum esse, si Lucas hanc rem tacuerit, quum et alia multa, quæ Paulus sustinuisse se replicat, historiographi licentiâ prætermiserit. In Gal. cap. ii. T. IV. p. 244.
and 26. But that particular did not come within the compass of his design.
30. Many things, not expressly mentioned by St. Luke, may be argued and concluded to have been done, from those which he has recorded.
1.) In Acts iv. 23-30, is recorded a prayer of the apostles, in which they request, that they may be enabled to work miracles for farther confirming the doctrine taught by them. And unquestionably their prayer was heard, and their request granted, and they did work many miracles in the name of Christ, more than are related by St. Luke.
2.) Acts v. 12, "And by the hand of the apostles were many signs and wonders done among the people:" and what follows. Whence it may be concluded, that many miracles were wrought, not only by Peter and John, but also by the other apostles also, beside those which are particularly recorded. See also ch. ii. 43.
3.) Says Mr. Biscoe: Many and great miracles are ' related in the history of the Acts to be wrought by St. Paul and his fellow-labourers in their preaching the gospel to the Gentiles. And agreeably hereto St. Paul says, 2 Cor. xii. 12, "Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought amongst you in all patience, in signs and wonders, and 'mighty deeds.” And to the Romans, ch. xv. 18, 19.— · 'I make no doubt, says that learned writer, but the apostles wrought miracles in every city, where they came with a view to preach the gospel, and make converts. St. Luke ' is so very succinct in his history of the Acts, that he often ' omits them. He gives an account of only a miracle or "two wrought at Philippi in his whole account of St. Paul's 'journey from Antioch to the West, when he converted a 'great part of Macedonia and Achaia: though it is evident from St. Paul's own epistle, already quoted, that he at that time did many signs and wonders at Corinth. And that he did the same at Thessalonica is not obscurely inti• mated in his first epistle to the Thessalonians, ch. i. 5. We 'read nothing in the Acts of the Apostles of what St. Paul did in Galatia the first time, more than that he went through it, Acts xvi. 6. And all that is added the second
Ecumenius says, that Luke omitted many miracles wrought by the apostles for avoiding ostentation. Πολλων δε θαυματων επιτελεμενων ὑπο των αποτόλων, ως και ανωτέρω εμνησθη ὁ ταυτα γραφων Λυκας, [cap. ii. 43.] αδενος εκείνων ονοματι μνημονεύει, αλλ' εκείνο γραφει μονον αφ' ε παντες εκινήθησανη και ότι ο κομπυ χαριν ἡ συγγραφη αυτή αυτή εσπεδασθη. Ecum. in Act. Cap. iii. tom. i. p. 25. A. B.
The History of the Acts confirmed, ch. xi. sect. 8. p. 407, 408.
time he was there is, that "he went over all the country of Galatia strengthening all the disciples," ch. xviii. 23. Which indeed is an intimation, that the first time he was there he preached the gospel among them, and made converts. But from his epistle to the Galatian churches. it is fully evident that he wrought miracles among them, and conferred on them gifts of the Holy Spirit. For he asks them: "He that ministereth to you the Spirit, and 'worketh miracles among you, doth he it by the works of 'the law, or by the hearing of faith?" Gal. iii. 5. That he means himself, is manifest from the whole tenor of the 'epistle. See ch. i. 6; ch. iv. 11, 13, 14, 19.'
There follow other like observations, which I may not transcribe.
4.) Mr. Biscoe, as above, makes no doubt but the apostles wrought miracles in every city where they came, with a view to preach the gospel, and make converts. I am of opinion, that this may be truly supposed of Paul particularly, and that it may be concluded from what St. Luke has written. For, according to him, Paul wrought miracles in Cyprus, Acts xiii. 11, at Lystra, xiv. 10, at Philippi, xvi. 16-18, (See also 25, 26,) and very many at Ephesus, xix. 11—17. ` And at Troas he raised Eutychus to life, xx. 9-12. In his voyage from Judea to Rome he wrought many miracles, xxviii. 3-6, and 7-10. From these miracles, recorded by St. Luke, it may be well argued, that St. Paul wrought miracles in all, or most other places, where he went, and made any stay, preaching the gospel. In particular, it may be argued, that Paul wrought miracles at Athens and at Rome. What they were we cannot say, because they have not been recorded by St. Luke, nor by any other credible writer. But that miracles were performed by the apostles in those cities, appears to me very probable.
5.) St. Luke has not given any account of St. Paul's appearing before the emperor Nero at Rome, when he was sent thither by Festus. Nevertheless, that Paul was brought before Nero soon after his arrival at Rome, is highly probable. And though St. Luke has not expressly said so, it may be concluded from what he has said. For he has again and again sufficiently intimated that Paul was certainly to appear before the emperor, to whom he had pealed. See Acts xxv. 10, 11, 12, 21; xxvi. 32; xxvii. 24, xxviii. 19. The apostle therefore was brought before
h Mirum, quod Lucas hic nullam faciat mentionem primæ defensionis Pauli, de quâ ipse, 2 Tim. iv. quam factam fuisse primo anno quo Romam venit, non dubitandum. Est. ad Act. xxviii. 30.