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original text is here proved! This is what I call corruption (tahrîf) (p. 336).

In treating of the variations, or, as he will have it, corruptions of the MSS. of the Bible, such arguments as the following frequently occur:—

Urbanus VIII., of the Romish Church, Sergius Harûnî, and other learned Christians, admit that in the original manuscripts, both Hebrew and Greek, some degree of corruption has crept in, and that words and modes of construction, opposed to the genius of the original languages, are found in these books. See now, how my case is proved even by confession of the defendants!. There is this attempted explanation, indeed, that these errors originated in the carelessness of the writers, or want of ability in the translators. But such a fanciful theory cannot impugn the confirmation afforded by the concession to my claim. Again, they say that the Holy Ghost, and the prophets themselves, were accustomed to write in the same strange and erroneous manner (ghalat palat). But this is in effect my very argument, that (in the words of the Coran) "they write passages with their hands, and then say this is from the Lord," i.e. they say of what they themselves composed, that is the word of God. Now to attribute such errors to the Holy Ghost and to the prophets, is the same as attributing them to God (p. 433).

He endeavours to rebut Pfander's argument, that the Bible being from an early date in the hands of multitudes throughout the world, it was impossible all should have united in corrupting it, in the following manner:—

Twelfth proof. It is evidently possible, that any book, say the Shah Nameh, might be in the hands of every man throughout the whole world, and that every man might, in his own place, make the same alteration therein. This is not an intellectual impossibility; at the very most it would be a miracle. Seeing, then, that this is not a logical impossibility, the proof of it might be established by the same species of evidence as that by which the mission of Moses or Jesus is established:—that is to say, by him (Mohammed) who was endowed with prophecy and showed evident miracles,—and as the last of the prophets hath evidenced both facts equally by an inspired declaration. Copies of the Bible, however, at that early epoch, were not spread abroad to so great an extent as is now the case, but remained for the most part in the hands of those alone whose perfidy was foretold by Jesus and his apostles; and since these afterwards reached you through the hands of people whom you yourselves testify that for centuries they held an undivided power and authority over the book;— it results that its corruption would not amount even to a miracle, and must


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