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that such an one knew well the prophecies of the Jews and could wisely judge of their fulfilment in the Messiah. Next he recites his bitter prejudices and persecutions of the believers. The inference a priori must be that such a man would join himself to them only from overwhelming reasons of conviction." See Isa. lviii. 3-7: Jer. viii. 22: Ezek. xxv. 3-5; xxviii. 2-10: Matt. xix. 26: Acts xxvi. 4-8, 9-11 Heb. vi. 4-6, 18.


(6) Arguments from consequents to antecedents, technically styled a posteriori. Webster, in his reply to Hayne, reasoned that there ought to be a Union now and forever, one and inseparable," otherwise the consequences would be "States dissevered, discordant, belligerent, a land rent with civil feuds, or drenched, it may be, with fraternal blood." See, too, Robert Hall's sermon, Modern Infidelity, text, Eph. ii. 12. Compare the reasoning of Job's friends as to the probable antecedents of the patriarch. See also, Isa. ii. 4: Ezek. xiii. 1015: Habak. ii. 9-16: Hag. i. 9: Matt. vii. 6–20: John viii. 39-43: Acts xvii. 29: Heb. iii. 17, 18: ix. 5, 16. The liability of falling into error while using this form of argument is seen in Luke xiii. 1-5: John ix. 2, 3.

(c) Arguments showing that antecedents or consequents being true progressively up to a given point, will continue to be true beyond that point. Dr. Whately terms this the argument of progressive approach. It is very effectively employed in oratory, especially when climax is sought. The student may

prove the omnipotence of God from the government of the world, of the planetary system, and of the stellar universe.

(d) Arguments showing that antecedents or consequents being of a given character in one thing or relation, will be of a corresponding character in another thing or relation. See Analogical Reasoning, page 201.

(e) Arguments showing that antecedents or consequents being true in a given case, are still more probably true in another given case, technically termed a fortiori. It is a very popular argument and is well adapted to oratory. See Burke's selfdefence on Catholic Emancipation, beginning, “A great terror fell upon this kingdom," &c. Also Julius Cæsar, Act III., beginning with the display of Cæsar's mantle. And see 2 Sam. xii. 1-14: Isa. vii. 13: Jer. xii. 5: Ezek. xv. 5; xxiii. 24: Mal. i. 8: Matt. iv. 25–34; vii. 11, 12; x. 24, 25; xxv. 30: Luke xxiii. 31: John x. 35: Rom. viii. 32: Heb. ii. 2, 3; ix. 13, 14; xii. 25: 1 Peter iv. 17, 18: 1 Cor. vi.

(f) Arguments showing that since certain antecedents or consequents are accepted, they lead necessarily to the acceptance of others which have been rejected, termed argumentum ad hominem. Quotations from an author with whom the opponent agrees, is essentially this form of argument. See Cicero's Defence of Ligarius, beginning, "But I ask, who says it was a crime," &c. Butler's Analogy frequently uses this argument. All the parables

of the Old Testament, and most of our Lord's, involve this form of argument. See also, Jonah iv. 10, 11: Matt. vii. 3, 5; xii. 27, 28: John vii. 22, 23: Acts xvii. 28, 29: 1 Cor. xv. 29, 30.

(g) Arguments showing that one or more opposing antecedents or consequents must be true, and that whichever is true a certain other proposition must also be true, technically termed Dilemma. Pyrrho, the ancient sceptic, asserted that no one can have certain knowledge of anything. One of his friends involved him in the following dilemma: "You either know what you say to be true, or you do not know it; if you do know it to be true, that very knowledge proves your assertion to be false, and you do wrong to make it. If you do not know it to be true, you do wrong to assert it, since no one has a right to assert what he does not know to be true; therefore, in either case, you do wrong to assert that no one can have certain knowledge of anything." See page 43. Also see Patrick Henry's oration on the war, beginning, "We must resort either to submission," &c. See Matt. xii. 25-28; xxi. 25-27: Mark xii. 14, 18-23; 35-37: Luke xx. 2-8: Acts v. 38, 39.

(h) Arguments showing that certain antecedents. and consequents are reasonable, by showing the absurdity or impossibility of their opposites, technically called reductio ad absurdum, or per impossibile. This mode of reasoning is often adopted in mathematics. It is a favorite argument with Socrates. The evangelical by this method can often

silence the anti-evangelical both as to the doctrine of endless punishment and the deity of Christ. See Erskine's Defence of St. Asaph, beginning,


Every sentence contained in this little book," &c. See also, Isa. x. 15; xxix. 16; xl. 12-26; xliv. 6–20 ; xlvi. 1–7; lv. 2: Jer. x. 3-5; xxii. 15: Mal. 1-8.

(i) Arguments showing the nature or results of given antecedents and consequents by showing the nature of their opposites, termed reductio per contraria. Like the last, it is a negative method, but is popular and often very effective. If, in trying to convince a person of the advantages of education, the disadvantages of ignorance are presented; or if the benefits of Sabbath observance are shown by stating the evils of Sabbath breaking, the reasoning falls under this class. This argument was often employed by the early apologists when showing the advantages of Christianity over Paganism. There is an approach to this form of argument in Eph. ii., where the apostle compares what the Ephesians were by nature, with what they are by grace. See also, Matt. v. 45-47.

Such are the forms into which argumentative speech shapes itself. The mastery of them is not. difficult; and when fully mastered the speaker can easily decide what form of argument should be chosen in unfolding any given subject; he can also easily classify arguments when properly presented, and detect fallacies when they are offered in place of sound arguments.



THEY are subdivided into such as relate to:
Ordinary Discourse.


(1) Avoid the use of weak arguments. Arguments like materials used in mechanics, are tested not at the strongest, but at the weakest points. In courts of justice, the use of a worthless witness is liable to lead to the acquittal of the prisoner, though the other evidence had been sufficient for conviction. The opponent, if skilful, will glide over the weightier arguments presented, but will dwell upon, and magnify the weaknesses of those that have but little weight. It was this art which greatly aided Demosthenes in gaining his conquest over Eschines. (2) Avoid the use of arguments which prove too much. Often men are encumbered with their own logic. Dr. James Freeman Clarke, in his Orthodoxy, its Truths and Errors, in an attempt to show that hell limits the divine omnipotence, reasons thus: "Unless God's laws are obeyed, God is not obeyed; and he is not a Sovereign if not obeyed." Should the Doctor be called upon to treat of the evils and disobedience of humanity for the last six

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