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Loss; no Remembrance of her Travail, but that most uncomfortable one of Fears and Pangs undergone to encrease the Number of the Dead. And yet the most melancholy Aggravation is Mil behind, tha.tjhe was a Widow; a State, of all others, the most Friendless and Forlorn, and, for this Reason, frequently mention'd in Scripture, as that, which God receives into his more immediate Protection. Such then, being the Condition of this mournful Woman, bereav'd of her Husband, bereav'd of her Son, in the Bloom and Vigour of Youth, when just at a Condition to repair a Mother's past Tendernels and Trouble, by becoming the Stay and Support of her Age and approaching Infirmities; it is not at all to be wonder'd at, if this Complication of Misery mov'd Compassion in the merciful Jesus, to exert his divine Power,, in order to turn her Sorrow and Lamentation into
why we What became of these several Persons, have no after they were raised from the dead, Account we kave indeed no Account transmitted subsequent to us; but the Reason hereof is plain, Lives, r because the Evangelijls, writing the History of Christ only, had occasion to take notice of them so far as Christ was
'Defence of Script. Hist. p. 8.
concern'd with them, but were under no Obligation to enter into their particular Story. To prove the Miracles to be true, the Evangelists particularly relate the Circumstances of the Persons death, and particularly also the Circumstances of their being raised to Life again j and what more can be expected than this? If we had the minutest Account of their Affairs afterwards, the Miracle would stand just as it does, neither impair'd nor confirm'd by the History: But then, to expect that the Gospel, which was intended to instruct the World in Religion, should be fill'd with Mens private Adventures, or that the Evangelists should be oblig'd to write every Person's Life, on whom Christ wrought a Cure, is a thing highly absurd and unreasonable. If however, we may be allow'd to conjecture, r it seems not improbable, from the speedy Progress of the Gospel, that many of these Persons, by modest and humble Acknowledgments of the Benefits they had receiv'd, by satisfying the Inquisitive, and convincing the Doubtful, might, according to their Stations, help forward the Work of the Apostles, and others engaged in spreading the Doctrine of Christ.
• Laxities* Vind. p. Jo.
Nor any Whether the three, whom our Savr^Srom our was plealed to raise, aster their rethcm of turn to Life again, gave any Tidings ^separate concerning the Circumstances of their separate Existence, is what we cannot Ib much as conjecture, unless we had some Knowledge, whether their Souls might exist, and yet be under a Suspension of their Operations, at least without an Accession of any new Ideas, for as long a time, as they were out of the Body; or, if new Ideas were communicated in their separate State, whether they retain'd them after their Re-union, or were perv mitted to divulge them, or capable indeed of expressing them by the common Forms of Speech, which are only adapted to material and sensible things. vOur Saviour himself, who was from abovei who was in the Bosom of the Father, and came to teach us all things necessary to Religion, has not thought fit to give us any distinct and particular Account of the other World. * St. -Paul, who had abundance of Revelations, who was caught up into the third Heaven, and - into Paradise, has not attempted any such thing; but declares only, that what he heard there, were things un-» Jpeakabk, and what it was not lawful for a Man to utter. The Gospel, in the
* Lardncr's Vijjd. p. 4$. '2 Coy. xii. a, 7.
main, has made known unto us the
Hitherto it appears that there is no No CoihIncongrmty in the several Stories, as they sion or are related by the Evangelists; and, that t bcfe" rvlithere can be no Suspicion of Fallacy in r.tcics. the Miracles themselves, is what we shall now endeavour to evince. 1 That the
several 1 Defence of Script. Hist. p. 13.
several Persons, whom our Saviour raffed to Life, were actually dead, or at least were all of them treated as dead Persons by their Friends and Relations, is evident and incontestible. For, when our Lord came to farus's House, he found the Minstrels there, and the People making great Lamentation j the Widow's Son was carrying to his Grave; and Lazarus had been actually buried several Days. But 'tis Nonsense to believe, that those about the Ruler's Daughter would have call'd in the musical Instruments, z as the manner of Funerals among the "Jews was; or that the Widow would have suffer'd her onlySon to be carried forth as a Corpse; or Martha, andoMiry their Brother to be ib long buried; had there not been, in these several Cases, all the Evidence of Death that Reason and Sense could give. The Case 'Tis confeis'd indeed, that common ofrj\e,s Fame ajstrds Instances of the mistaken Son."" Deaths of Persons, who have sometimes been unfortunately buried alive, and at other times happily restored to Life; and therefore, for Argument's fake, let us iiippose for once, that this Widow's Son of Slain, might possibly be in a Lethargick State -, yet since all about him concluded
1 Vid. Lezvh's Antiq. of the Heb. Rep. Vol. 3. p. 371.