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The design of the Scripture names in general proved, and of this Name in particular fewn.

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"HAT all names were at first intended to

convey to the human mind descriptions

of persons, places or things, by denoting some distinguishing property or condition of being or character they had, or were to be possessed of, is to be proved from the very nature of a perfect language, and from the matter of fail. From the nature of language this is clearly deducible. B



For language is nothing more than the medium by which the soul may have ideas of persons and places and things communicated to it, which words could not possibly do, if they did not carry along with them and raise up some fixed ideas of these in the mind. Because what information does a word, without such known idea annexed to it, impart to a man? For instance, what does the unlearned reader profit by being told Ber Asit Bera Aleim ? surely the person, who spoke them, would seem to him a barbarian; talking indeed, but unintelligibly. Whercas open the meaning of the words to him, as given in our English bibles, in the beginning God created, Gen. i. 1. and then, as often as they shall be read or heard, they will carry to him these ideas or this sense, and become a medium or means of instruction, lighting him, as it were, to, and giving him intercourse with a very important truth, which he had otherwise never known. The primitive language then, as being the work of an infinite wisdom, and calculated to establish such intera course, must certainly have consisted of such significative or descriptive words, as afforded ideas to the mind of what the things spoken of were to be distinguished by ; whether they were applied to things, as appellative nouns, or names, or to persons or places, under the denomination of proper names; that is, of names properly or with


propriety given to persons or places; because thus descriptive of what they were or are, and on this account appropriated to them. For that is in latter times only abusively called a proper name, which denotes a person to be what he is not; as may be clearly enough instanced in now calling a child ABRAHAM, who neither is nor will be a father of many nations, which he should be to make this a proper name for a child ; and this might be shewn in many other names, that are indiscriminately and injudiciously bestowed on children.

Nor is this to be less supported from the mata ter of fact. The language, in which God has been pleased to reveal His will to man, is eminently descriptive. If we examine a few words in the lexicons or dictionaries, and their usage in the Bible, we shall soon be convinced of it. The proper names therefore, as consisting mostly (a) of words, which occur elsewhere, and are used to denote other similar things or actions in SS, must be equally fignificant. But lest any, inattentive to the necessary nature of language, and to the actual genius and constitution of the holy tongue, should not gather from them the design of the proper names to be the same with that of the other words of SS, to convey to us important ideas of certain characters or offices, ftuations or conditions, and so be deprived, as

B 2 (a) For there are a few names which do not.


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now they in general are, for want of a due regard to their meaning, of the prophetic notices they contain, God has most graciously provided, and accordingly dispersed from time to time in SS, and, for very wise caufes, more abundantly before the discovery of writing, evident instances of this purpose in the names, that we might by these be waked to a due attention to it in others, which we meet with. For, to pass over those places or things, for whose names reasons are frequently assigned, we are told expresly before the food, that ADAM called his wife's name [in] Eve, [Life the 70 say] “ the QUICKENING ONE,” because she was the mother of all [** HI] LIVING that Eve called her first-born [12] KAIN; for she said (in expectancy of his being the MESSIAH promised in Gen. iii. which the Jewis doctors, as father Simon, b. II. p. 165, fays, affirm this text to refer to, tho' he causelessly blames them for it, and Luther for thus literally translating it,) I have [V! KAIN-ITI] gotten the man, the very JEHOVAH, Gen. iv. I. It is said that she called the other fon's name Seth; for God (said she) has [nu Seth] appointed me another feed instead of Abel, whom Cain flew, v. 25. LAMECH called his son's name Noah, saying, this same shall [ Noahm] comfort us, &c. c. v. 29. After the food God said to ABRAM, thy name shall be ABRAHAM, for a [ax AB] father of a [


Hame] multitude of nations have I made thee, c. xvii. 5. It is written of Jacob, afterward came his (ESAU's) brother out, and his hand held Esau by the [spy ACOB] heel: therefore his name was called JACOB, “the SUPPLANTER,” c. xxv. 25, 26: of whom it is also said by ESAU, Is [Gen. Bib. was] not he rightly named Jacob? for he hath [spy Oques or AcoB] fupplanted me these two times, c. xxvii. 36. That reasons are given for the names of his fons may be seen c. xxix. 32, and c. XXX.

The God-man, c. xxxii. 30. ver. 24, (b) said to Jacob, thy name Shall be called no more Jacob, but ISRAEL, for [rogu SeR-it] as a prince thou hast had power with [SinBX (c) ELOHIM or AleiM] God and man and haft prevailed. When PHAREZ was born, TAMAR said, how haft thou broken forth? [nyang Pharez-et] this [va Pharez] breach be upon thee : therefore his name was called PHAREZ, “ the BREAKER FORTH,” c. xxxviii. 29. JOSEPH called the name of the first-born MANASSEH, “ the BEARING AWAY one,for God (said he) hath made me [1909 Nasse-ni] forget or borne away

from (6) In these two passages every Juw, that does not turn away his eyes, may see that the MESSIAH was to be, as here He appeared and is called, both God and man, and one wrestling allo. For that He is the divine person spoken of in this chapter their do&tors allow.

(c) From the reason for this name it is plain, [ab] ALL IS of the root [58] Alor E.. For Jacob is called Israel from his having power with ELOHIM, 'therefore El is a word of the fame root and significancy with ELOHIM: otherwise the rexe would contain no reason for the name,

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