Sect. 4. The conceipts of Pe: Alfunsus and Schickard of the Iewish bap∣tisme. Raf: Alphus: Mr. T. his conclusion not inferred. The original of the Iewish Baptisme (the onely doubt) vindicated. Iacob's injunction to his family. Sanctifications Exod. 19.10. differ from washing garments.
[ 1] WHat he next addes from Mr. Selden, of some that con∣ceived the Iewish baptisme in initiating of proselytes was in imitation of Christs example (and so not Christs of theirs) and of Schickard that conceives they added baptisme to circumcision, to difference them from Samaritans, is too vain to deserve any other reply, then what he himself hath annext concerning the former, viz. that Mr. Selden (naming onely Pet. Alfansus for this) doth not give any credit to him in it (but indeed disproves it, and addes antidotes to that poyson, that without them I should not Page 18 have thought likely to have wrought on any man.) And indeed so he doth also in plain terms concerning the latter, de Syxed: l. 1. c. 3. fateor me nondum illud aut eâ de re quicquam alibi legisse,* he never read that or any thing of that matter any where else.
[ 2] To which I adde, that if the place in Schickard be examined, it will acknowledge it to be a singular conceipt and invention of his, and nothing else.
[ 3] In his 5t. Chap. de Reg. Iud. he hath these words, ad diffe∣rentiam Samaritanorum addiderunt baptismum quendam de quo Raf. Alphes Tom. 2. p. 26. & ipse Talmud Mass. Jefamos fol. 47. citing the words at large in Hebrew. But in those words, though they are by Schickard applied indefinitely, as if they were the testification of the whole foregoing proposition, yet the reader shall find no syllable to that purpose of differencing from Samari∣tanes, more then from all other men, but onely that when a prose∣lyte is received he must be circumcised, and then 〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉 when he is cured, they shall baptize him in the presence of two wise men, saying, Behold he is as an Israelite in all things, or if she be a woman, the women lead her to the waters &c. A plain testimony (to the sense of those which we formerly produced) of baptizing both Jews and proselytes (for else how could the pro∣selyte, upon receiving this, be said to be a Israelite in all things?) but no least intimation, that this was designed to distinguish them from Samaritanes peculiarly, but as that which was alwayes customarie among the Jews, at their entring into Covenant with God.
And then the premises being so groundlesse and frivolous, I shall not sure be concerned in any conclusion that Mr. T. shall inferre from them, which it seems, is to be this, that notwithstan∣ding the Doctor's supposition that the whole fabrick of baptisme is discernible to be built on that basis, the customary practice among the Jews, yet many will conceive it needs more proof then the bare recitall of passages out of Iewish writers.
[ 4] But Mr. T. would be much put to it, to shew in what mode and figure it is, that this conclusion is drawn out of these premisses: Certainly none that my Logick hath afforded me, for that hath no engine first to draw many out of two; nor 2. to inferre that those Page 19 that had mistaken for want of knowledge (as Alphunsus) or adverting (as Schickard) of the Iewish customes, would need any more then the recitation of clear testimonies out of the soberest Iewish writers, to disabuse him: or 3. that they that either through prejudice, or any other principle of obstinacie shall resist this degree of light thus offered them, will be convinced by any other sort of testimonies, whether out of the Fathers, or Scripture it self, being so well fortified and provided with incli∣nations, at least if not with artifices, to reject one, or misinterpret the other.
[ 5] But, it seems, after all this, and to evidence to how little pur∣pose he hath said thus much, Mr. T. is well enough satisfied, at least as farre as to baptizing of proselytes, that there was such a custome among the latter Iewes afore Christs incarnation; All the difficulty, saith he, is concerning the original of it among them, For that either it should begin from Iacobs injunction to his house∣hold, Gen. 35.2. or from Gods command Exo. 19 10. for the Is∣raelites to wash their clothes afore the giving of the law, he cannot conceive, those places speaking of washing Jewes by nature, not proselytes, whereas the Jewes baptized not Jewes by nature (as Mr. Selden saith) but by profession.
[ 6] Here are many weak parts in these few words; For 1. The ori∣ginal of the custome among the Jewes is but an accessarie, wholly extrinsecal to the matter in hand, and in no respect necessary to be defined by us: If the custome be acknowleged, we need ask no more, and Mr. T. having acknowleged the custome, grants all that in that matter we require of him, for on that, and not on that particular original of it, it is that we superstruct our whole fabrick, as farre as belong; to infant baptisme, which is very fitly founded in the Jewish custome of baptizing, from whence soever that custome was derived to them, And so that one thing super∣sedes and answers that whole difficulty, if indeed there were any such in this matter.
[ 7] But then 2dly. for the two originals here set down and both rejected by him, it is a little strange that he should think fit to do so, and not to substitute any third in the place of them; For tis certain that every custome received universally into a Church or society of men, must have some originall or other, and consequently Page 20 this custome being by Mr. T. acknowleged, must not in any rea∣son be left 〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉, without Father, without Mother, with∣out any original; and therefore those two that are alleged for it by the Iewish writers, being by him so fastidiously rejected, it was very fit that he should assign some other, and annex his rea∣sons of giving it the deference, upon which it should be prefer'd be∣fore them.
[ 8] And when he shall do so, I shall not doubt to imbrace it, and make the same advantage of it which hitherto I have done of either of these. But he is here pleased to be reserved, and gives not the least intimation of any other reason, which is more suitable with his conceptions. Tis true indeed he did before out of Grotius, mention Noahs flood, in memorie of which this custome arose a∣mong other nations, but besides that this original of it was not by him deemed sufficient to appropriate it to the Iewes, but leaves it common to them with other nations, those other two, Iacobs injunction, and Gods command before receiving the Law (either one or both) are perfectly reconcileable with that, and the memo∣rie of the deluge being the more remote and first original, these may be the neerer and more immediate, and so are not prejudged by his pretending, or my yeelding of that.
[ 9] 3dly. For Iacobs injunction to his household, Gen. 35.2. it is no where vouched by me as the original of this custome among the Iewes,* but onely an intimation given, that that other, the command of God before the giving the Law, was agreeable to what we read of Iacob to his household, and so certainly it is, for as in the one the ceremonie prescribed them to use at the putting away strange Gods, was this, to be clean and change their garments; so in the other they are injoyned to sanctifie themselves and wash their clothes, which is in other words directly the same thing: washing themselves and having clean garments being among the Iewes joyned together, and the witnesse of their garments prescribed in baptisme〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉 (saith the Glosse on Gemara Babylon, tit▪ Iabimoth) to receive the presence of the divine Majesty (just as in the Christian Church the Dominica in albis, white or Whit∣sunday was a special day for administration of baptisme▪ and the persons baptized wore rhetorically styled sometimes 〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉starres rising out of the waters, sometimes Page 21〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉the bright lilies of the font, as they are joyned together in Proclus Orat: 12. p. 384. and in S. Chrysostome, new lilies planted from the font, Hom. 6. de resurr: and accordingly on Constantine's great coyne, stampt in memory of his baptisme, was ingraven (on one side) a poole of water with a lilie grown out of it; (see Jos: Scal: in Opusc:) and all these but figurative expressions of what Chrysostome more plainly sets down by 〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉 their putting on white garments at the receiving of baptisme, Tract. de S. Pent. for which Jobius in Photius hath 〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉 onely.)
[ 10] And then as Jacob vowed a vow to the Lord to give him the tenth of all, and accordingly God after instituted the tithes for the Le∣vites portion, and so the latter of these was agreeable to the for∣mer, but yet the latter, viz. Gods institution, the original of the custome of tithing among the Jewes; so Iacob might injoyn his household that ceremonie of washing or baptisme, and after that God injoyn it in giving the Law, and one of these be a∣greeable to the other, and yet the custome of baptisme among the Iewes be derived onely from the latter, as from the peculiar original of it.
[ 11] 4thly. The command of God, Exod. 19.10. in which baptisme is said to be founded by the Iewes, is not (as Mr. T. suggests) the command to the Israelites to wash their clothes (nothing but the custome of changing their garments can be founded in that) but the command to Moses to sanctifie them (Go unto the people and sanctifie them to day and to morrow) in the Hebr•w notion of the word 〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉, sanctifications, for washing, either the whole, or some parts of the body, as is shew'd at large, §. 35.
[ 12] And if in stead of this of sanctifying, i. e. baptizing them, Mr. T. did unwittingly substitute washing their garments, then I hope, he may now be advised to reforme that mistake, and see more reason then hitherto he hath done, to assign that command of Gods, as the most agreeable original of this custome, and no longer imagine that it was a custome of the latter Iewes, taken up by themselves without any ground of Scripture; But if formerly he saw this, and was willing to disguise it, and, on purpose to Page 22 misguide the reader, left out the mention of Moses's sanctify∣ing or baptizing them, and onely set down the washing of their garments (which was not at all proper for the turn) to be the original of baptisme, wherein, as Paulinus tells us, they were rendred nivei, white as snow, corpore as well as babitu, in body as well as garment, I shall not then hope that even this length of words will be sufficient for his conviction.
[ 13] Lastly, For his reason against deducing the baptisme of prose∣lites from this original [because the Iewes baptized not Iewes by nature but by profession, whereas those places speake of washing Iewes by nature, not proselytes] it will presently appear to be very vain; for 1. The Iewes baptized Iewes by nature, and not proselytes onely, as hath been both there and here shewed at large, out of the most creditable of the Iewish writers; 2dly. Their baptizing of proselytes was founded in their precedent custome of baptizing of Iewes, as hath been evidenced also from the Rabbines explication of Num. 15.15. One ordinance shall be both for you of the congregation of Israel, and also for the stranger or prose∣lyte. And so tis evident that of Exod. 19.10. being the original of baptizing native Iewes, may, and must be the original of baptizing the proselytes.
[ 14] And this in each part being thus manifest, Mr. Selden's au∣thority (if it should be, as is pretended) can be of no force a∣gainst those evidences which I have here produced, the best he offers us at any time, to prove any thing concerning the Iewish customes. And I shall now appeale to the Reader, whether Mr. T. could well have been expected to have made more misad∣ventures in so few words.