Bengel (better known as a commentator), Zinzendorf, Butler and the Erskines helped to redeem the time from the reproach of being the dark age of Protestantism.
JOHANN ALBRECHT BENGEL (1687-1752), Lutheran divine and scholar, was born at Winnenden in Wurttemberg, on the 24th of June 1687.
His father died in 1693, and Bengel was educated by a friend, who became a master in the gymnasium at Stuttgart.
In 1703 Bengel left Stuttgart and entered the university of Tubingen, where, in his spare time, he devoted himself specially to the works of Aristotle and Spinoza, and in theology to those of Philipp Spener, Johann Arndt and August Franke.
After taking his degree, Bengel devoted himself to theology.
In 1707 Bengel entered the ministry and was appointed to the parochial charge of Metzingen unter-Urach.
Bengel exerted himself on the side of the members of the consistory.
In preparation for his work Bengel was able to avail himself of the collations of upwards of twenty MSS., none of them, however, of great importance, twelve of which had been collated by himself.
The second part of the critical apparatus was devoted to a consideration of the various readings, and here Bengel adopted the plan of stating the evidence both against and in favour of a particular reading, thus placing before the reader the materials for forming a judgment.
Bengel was the first definitely to propound the theory of families or recensions of MSS.
In answer to these strictures, Bengel published a Defence of the Greek Text of His New Testament, which he prefixed to his Harmony of the Four Gospels, published in 1736, and which contained a sufficient answer to the complaints, especially of Wetstein, which had been made against him from so many different quarters.
The text of Bengel long enjoyed a high reputation among scholars, and was frequently reprinted.
(B.) The other great work of Bengel, and that on which his reputation as an exegete is mainly based, is his Gnomon Novi Testamenti, or Exegetical Annotations on the New Testament, published in 1742.
John Wesley made great use of it in compiling his Expository Notes upon the New Testament (1755) Besides the two works already described, Bengel was the editor or author of many others, classical, patristic, ecclesiastical and expository.
- For full details regarding Bengel the reader is referred to Oskar Wachter's J.
Nestle, Bengel als Gelehrter (1893).
Bengel, abbot of Alpirspach (a Lutheran community), published in 1734, at Tubingen, an edition of the New Testament which marks the beginning of a new era.
Bengel and J.
Here he studied for a time under Ernst Bengel, grandson of the eminent New Testament critic, Johann Albrecht Bengel, and at this early stage in his career he seems to have been under the influence of the old Tubingen school.