Correspondence.

1869 271 Will your correspondent, "C. E. S.," kindly state his authority, if any, for saying "Some inspired communications (written by the Spirit of God) have perished?" — "Thoughts on Canticles," Bible Treasury, March, 1869, p. 225.

Have we any divine proof that the 1005 songs by Solomon, and his works on natural history, ever belonged to the canon of Scripture? Were they more than the sayings of the wise man? Yours, etc., Nescitur.

To the Editor of the Bible Treasury.

Apart from the questions of "Old Testament Canon," and the perpetual miracle in order to preserve the scriptures, there will many grave questions arise if it be allowed that ONE divinely written communication has perished.

"Some inspired communications have perished," i.e., are not in existence; e.g., the word of the Lord by Jonah the prophet of Gath-hepher concerning the restoring of the coasts of Israel, from the entering of Hamath unto the sea of the plain (2 Kings xiv. 25); the prophecy of Urijah the son of Shemaiah of Kirjath-jearim, against Jerusalem and the land of Judah (Jer. xxvi. 20); the prophecies of Micaiah the son of Imlah, against Ahab, which led to the king's statement — "He never prophesied good unto me, but always evil." (2 Chron. xviii. 7.) It is a mistake to suppose that every inspired communication of the Spirit of God to man is contained in the Bible. All that was needful for us to know and have, we possess; but not all that others, at different times, had communicated to them by the prophets. Where are the visions of Iddo the seer, against Jeroboam the son of Nebat, among which some of the acts of Solomon, not mentioned in Chronicles ("the rest of the acts"), were recorded? C. E. Stuart.

[Is not "the perpetual miracle in order to preserve the scriptures" a mistake? A miracle absolutely accomplishes by divine power. It is fully admitted that God works providentially to the end in view; but this is a very different statement and leaves room for the responsibility of man in his care of and reverence for the scriptures, text or translation, exposition or study; and alas! man fails here as everywhere; but God does not, and suffices for every need of His children and work. It is not meant either that any book in the Hebrew Scriptures or in the Greek New Testament is not inspired, or that any book is now lost which ever formed a part of scripture, which consists not only of inspired communications, but of those given and designed to be the permanent standard of divine truth. Even as to this the larger part of Christendom has proved faithless, not by rejecting real scripture, but by accrediting as such the Apocryphal Greek books of the Old Testament. Ed. B.T.]