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בס"ד

Inquiry.

The readers of Josephus are aware that some stress has been laid upon what is termed the "Testimony of Josephus concerning Christ," which is contained in the eighteenth book of the Antiquities of the Jews, ch. iii., § 3. This well-known passage commences, "Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man." It is very certain, that if Josephus had believed in the mission of this person as that of the true Messiah, he would to a certainty have said a great deal more about him than he has done, especially since the appearance of the true Messiah must to his opinion, had he believed in him as Mr. Whiston supposes, have been of far greater importance than any event which he describes at length; and still without believing in him, it is certainly somewhat strange to think it unlawful to call him man. It is quite clear to our view, that this paragraph has no connexion with what precedes or follows; and it has, therefore, been held by many, and will be so upon first sight by any unprejudiced man, as an interpolation made at a period subsequent to Josephus to answer certain purposes.

Now, we would be greatly obliged to any of our readers if they could inform us, 1. "Whether there are any copies of Josephus in which this paragraph does not appear? 2. When it was probably interpolated? and, 3. Whether the works of Josephus were known to the Talmudic doctors and the Rabbis of the middle ages up to modern times?—Our individual researches have not enabled us to answer either of these questions, and any which can throw light on the subject will be thankfully inserted in the pages of the Occident.