?The idea of stringed instruments was first derived from the twang of the well strung bow, as the archer shot his arrows; the lyre and the harp which discourse the sweetest music of peace were invented by those who first heard this inspiring sound in the excitement of battle. And so there is no music so delightful amid the jarring discord of the world, turning everything to music and harmonizing earth and heaven, as when the heart rises out of the gloom of anger and revenge, and converts its bow into a harp, and sings to it the Lord?s song of infinite forgiveness.? George Adam Smith, Mod. Criticism and Preaching of O.T., 5 ? ?The church has never renounced her liberty to revise the Canon. The liberty at the beginning cannot be more than the liberty thereafter. The Holy Spirit has not forsaken the leaders of the church. Apostolic writers nowhere define the limits of the Canon, any more than Jesus did. Indeed, they employed extra-canonical writings. Christ and the apostles nowhere bound the church to believe all the teachings of the O.T. Christ discriminates, and forbids the literal interpretation of its contents. Many of the apostolic interpretations challenge our sense of truth. Much of their exegesis was temporary and false. Their judgment was that much in the O.T. was rudimentary. This opens the question of development in revelation, and justifies the attempt to fix the historic order. The N.T. criticism of the O.T. gives the liberty of criticism, and the need, and the obligation of it.
O.T. criticism is not, like Baur?s of the N.T., the result of a Priori Hegelian reasoning. From the time of Samuel we have real history. The prophets do not appeal to miracles. There is more gospel in the book of Jonah, when it is treated as a parable. The O.T. is a gradual ethical revelation of God. Few realize that the church of Christ has a higher warrant for her Canon of the O.T. than she has for her Canon of the N.T. The O.T. was the result of criticism in the widest sense of that word. But what the church thus once achieved, the church may at any the revise.?
We reserve to a point somewhat later the proof of the credibility and the inspiration of the Scriptures. We now show their genuineness, as we would show the genuineness of other religious books, like the Koran, or of secular documents, like Cicero?s Orations against Catiline. Genuineness, in the sense in which we use the term, does not necessarily imply authenticity ( i.e., truthfulness and authority); see Blunt, Dict. Doct. and Hist. Theol., art.: Authenticity. Documents may be genuine which persons other than they whose names they bear, provided these persons belong to the same class write in whole or in part. The Epistle to the Hebrews, though not written by Paul, is genuine, because it proceeds from one of the apostolic class. The addition of Deuteronomy 34 , after Moses? death, does not invalidate the genuineness of the Pentateuch; nor would the
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