and consideration of ordinary writers. Nor were these men fanatics : they were men of sound and reasonable mind, and furnished in every case a reason for their faith and hope ; and they were perseveringly faithful to those reason- able convictions.
And what we have here noticed is likewise applicable to the various writers of the Old Testament They were, in the main, men notable for their fidelity to the Lord; and this history as impartially records and reproves their weak* nesses and shortcomings as it commends their virtues and faithfulness. This must astonish those who presume the Bible to be a manufactured history, designed to awe men into reverence of a religious system. There is a straight- forwardness about the Bible that stamps it as truth. Knaves, desirous of representing a man as great, and especially if desirous of presenting some of his writings as inspired of God, would undoubtedly paint such a one's character blameless and noble to the last degree* The fact that such a course has not been pursued in the Bible is reasonable evidence that it was not fraudulently gotten up to deceive*
Having, then, reason to cxptft a revelation of God's will and plan, and having found that the Bible, which claims to l>e that revelation, \vas written by men whose motives we see no reason to impugn, but which, on the contrary, we see reason to approve, let us examine the char- acter of the writings claimed as inspired, to see whether their teachings correspond with the character we have rea- sonabfy imputed to God, and whether they bear internal evidence of their truthfulness*
The first five books of the New Testament and several of the Old Testament are narratives or histories of facts known to the writers and vouched for by their characters. It is manifest to all that it did not require a special revela- tion aunply to tell the truth with reference to matters with