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been lately ordain'd Deacons, by the Apostles. We are told that Stephen, being full —vis, of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people. And when certain of the synagogue disputed with him, and •were not able to rests the wisdom and spirit, by which he spake, they fuborrid men, which said, We have heard him speak blasphemous words, against Moses, and against God. And they stirred up the people, and the elders, and the scribes, and came upon him, and caught him, and brought him before the Council. And set up false witnesses, which said; This man ceafeth not to speak blasphemous words, against this holy place, and the Law. For, we have heard him fay, that this Jesus of Nazareth Jhall destroy this place, and jhall change the customs which Moses delivered us. And all that fate in the council, looking stedfastly on him, saw his face, as it had been the face of an angel: With the calm, serene, intrepid, Countenance, of an innocent and an upright Man.
Then said the High-Priest, Are these things
so? And when Stephen had replied, like a
glorious Confessor for the Truth of the
Gospel, in a Manner too long to be here
recited, and very disagreeable to the Ears
—rii. 54. of his Judges, it is said, /FAirn they beard
these things, they were cut to the hearts and
they gna/hed on him with their teeth. And,
upon his offering somewhat more, ^Tbey
cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their
ears, and ran upon him with one accord; and
cast him out of the city, and stoned him.
After this, we read of the council again*
—-xxi. in relation to St. Paul; there having been
XXH.XX111. an Tnfurrection) Up0n his Account, in the
xxv. Temple, the chief captain came, with soldiers, and took him into Custody. And, the next day, because he would know the certainty wherefore be was accused of the Jews, be loosed him from his bands, and commanded the Chief-Priests, and all their council to appear; and brought Paul down, and set him before them.
And Paul, earnestly beholding the council, said, Men and brethren, I have lived in all good conscience before God, until this day. And the High-Priest Ananias commanded them that stood by, to smite him on the mouth. Then Jaid Paul unto him, God shall smite thee, thou whit ed wall; for, fittest thou to judge me after the Law, and, commandefl
m& f^be smitten contrary to the Law? And ■ they that Jlood by said, Revilest thou God's High-Priest? 'then said Paul, I wist not, 'brethren, that he was the High-Triest; for, * it is written, lhoujhalt not speak evil of the • ruler of thy people. As much as to fay, He behaved himself so unlike a Chief Magistrate, that I could not consider him in that Capacity j otherwise, I know my Duty well enough.
After this, there happening to be a great dissension in the council, the chief captain afraid lest Paul Jhould have been pulled in pieces of them, commanded the soldiers to go down to the Council-Chamber, and take him by force from amongst them, and bring him into the castle. From whence Taul being sent away to Cafarea, Ananias the HighPriest, with the elders, and a certain orator, named Tertullus, followed him thither; to inform the governor against him. But, this they did without carrying their Suit; for "' Felix the Governor adjourn'd the Hearing till a proper Opportunity; and kept Paul 'a Prisoner at large, for two Years. — *xiv«
And when Festus, who succeeded Felix, went to Jerusalem, The High-Priest, and D d the
the chief of the Jews, informed him against Paul, and besought him, and dejired favour against him, that he would send for him to Jerusalem; lying wait, in the way, to kill him. But Festus answered, 'that Paul should be kept at Cæsarea, and that he himself -would depart, Jhortly, thither. Let them therefore, said he, which among you are able, go down with me and accuse this man, if there be any wickedness in him. And, when he had tarried among them, more than ten days, he went down unto Cæsarea. And, the next day, fitting in the judgment feat, commanded Paul to be brought. And when he was come, the Jews, which came down from Jerusalem, food round about, and laid many and grievous complaints against Paul, which they could not prove.
However Festus, willing to "please the sews, propos'd to Paul that he should go up to Jerusalem and be tried there. But the sagacious Apostle, knowing well the fatal Consequences which would attend his trusting himself in that bloody City, which had been, time out of mind, infamous for stoning the Prophets, and killing those who •were sent unto her charg'd with Messages
from Heaven, wisely and resolutely appeal'd
Having given the foregoing large Account of the Method and Proceedings of the Great Council, or Senate^ let us next inquire into the 'Punishments which ensued, upon particular Crimes, after Condemnation was past therein. These, as we find them specified in the Law, were, Restitution, Fine, Retaliation, Whipping, Bani/hment, being fold, and Death various ways.
Of Restitution, we read thus; If a^x,, man /hall steal an ox or a sheep, and kill it, xxii. ij or fell it-, he stall restore five oxen for an ox, and four steep for a steep, with variety of other Cafes, that follow..
Of Fine, we have an Instance in this Cafe j If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, Jo that her fruit depart from her, and 23, &c, 'jet no (other) mischief follow: He stall be surely punished, according as the woman s hufband will lay upon him; and he stall pay, as the judges determine.
D d 2 And