Jesus's Words

Chapter 10: Paul Disbelieved Continued.—Jerusalem Visit IV. Continued. His Arrival and Reception. Accused by All the Disciples of the Apostles, He Commences an Exculpatory Oath in the Temple. Dragged Out by Them—Rescued by a Roman Commander—Sent in Custody to Rome

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Section 5: The Design of This Recommendation Justified

But the Apostles—says somebody—what are we to think of the Apostles? If by Paul a perjury was thus committed, were they not—all of them who joined in this recommendation—so many suborners of this same perjury?

The answer will, it is hoped, by most readers at least, have been anticipated.—Yes or no, if so it be, that it was their expectation that he would commit it: no, assuredly; if it were their expectation—their assured expectation—that he would not commit it: that, even in his person, even after all they had witnessed in him, the union of profligacy and rashness would never soar to so high a pitch. The necessity they were under, of ridding themselves of his presence was extreme:—of ridding themselves—and, what was so much more, their cause. Stay in the same town, and in the same company with them, he could not,—without being either their known adversary, or their known associate. Their known adversary he could not be, without either continuing himself to be an object of universal horror, or else rendering them objects of horror, to the whole body of their disciples. Their associate he could not be, without involving them in that odium, with which he himself was, by the confession of his own adherent and historiographer, covered. Under these circumstances, not to speak of the cause of mankind, for saving themselves and their cause from destruction,—what course could they take, so gentle, and at the same time, to all appearance, so surely effectual, as the proposing to him this test?—a test, which no man could rationally expect, that any man in his circumstances would take.

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