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Chapter XXVII.—Jewish Chronology Continued.

But since it does not seem irrational to prove that these nations that had their attention engrossed with the speculations of philosophy are of more modern date than those that had habitually worshipped the true God,10701070    [See note 4, p. 148, supra.] it is reasonable that we should state both whence the family of these latter originated; and that when they took up their abode in these countries, they did not receive a name from the actual localities, but claimed for themselves names from those who were primarily born, and had inhabited these. Noah had three sons—Shem, Ham, and Japheth. From these the entire family of man was multiplied, and every quarter of the earth owes its inhabitants in the first instance to these. For the word of God to them prevailed, when the Lord said, “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.” So great efficacy had that one word that from the three sons of Noah are begotten in the family 72 children,—(viz.,) from Shem, 25; from Japheth, 15; and from Ham, 32. Unto Ham, however, these 32 children are born in accordance with previous declarations.  And among Ham’s children are: Canaan,10711071    [The only son of Ham who did not go to Africa, vol. iii. p. 3.] from whom came the Canaanites; Mizraim, from whom the Egyptians; Cush, from whom the Ethiopians; and Phut, from whom the Libyans. These, according to the language prevalent among them, are up to the present day styled by the appellation of their ancestors; nay, even in the Greek tongue they are called by the names by which 150they have been now denominated. But even supposing that neither these localities had been previously inhabited, nor that it could be proved that a race of men from the beginning existed there, nevertheless these sons of Noah, a worshipper of God, are quite sufficient to prove the point at issue. For it is evident that Noah himself must have been a disciple of devout people, for which reason he escaped the tremendous, though transient, threat of water.

How, then, should not the worshippers of the true God be of greater antiquity than all Chaldeans, Egyptians, and Greeks, for we must bear in mind that the father of these Gentiles was born from this Japheth,10721072    [The fable of Iapetus cannot be explained away as a corroboration of the biblical narrative. Hor., Od., i. 3, 27.] and received the name Javan, and became the progenitor of Greeks and Ionians? Now, if the nations that devoted themselves to questions concerning philosophy are shown to belong to a period altogether more recent than the race of the worshippers of God as well as the time of the deluge, how would not the nations of the barbarians, and as many tribes as in the world are known and unknown, appear to belong to a more modern epoch than these? Therefore ye Greeks, Egyptians, Chaldeans, and the entire race of men, become adepts in this doctrine, and learn from us, who are the friends of God, what the nature of God is, and what His well-arranged creation. And we have cultivated this system, not expressing ourselves in mere pompous language, but executing our treatises in terms that prove our knowledge of truth and our practice of good sense, our object being the demonstration of His Truth.10731073    [Here the Edinburgh has “nature.” The context seems to require the more comprehensive word “Truth.”]

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