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BEFORE CHRIST

about 1471. given thee.

• Exod. 22. 29. & 23. 19. & 34. 26.

Lev. 2. 14. ch. 15. 19. Deut. 26. 2. ' ver. 11.

"Lev. 27. 28.

& 22. 29.

ch. 3. 13.

y Exod. 13. 13. & 34. 20.

5.

the LORD, them have I sons and thy daughters CHRIST
with thee, by a statute for about 1471.
13 And whatsoever is ever: fit is a covenant of Lev. 2. 13.
first ripe in the land, which salt for ever before the 2 Chron. 13.
they shall bring unto the LORD unto thee and to thy
LORD, shall be thine; seed with thee.
t every one that is clean in
thine house shall eat of it.
14 Every thing devoted
in Israel shall be thine.

u

15 Every thing that

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20 And the LORD spake unto Aaron, Thou shalt have no inheritance in their land, neither shalt thou have any part among them: I am thy part and

Deut. 10. 9.

& 12. 12. &

14.

27, 29. &

18. 1, 2.

18. 7.

Ps. 16. 5. Ezek. 44. 28. Lev. 27. 30,

b ver. 24, 26.

32.

Neh. 10. 37.

& 12. 44.

Exod. 13. 2. openeth the matrix in all Lev. 27. 26. flesh, which they bring thine inheritance among unto the LORD, whether it the children of Israel. Josh. 13. 14, be of men or beasts, shall 21 And, behold, h I have 33. & 14. 3. & be thine: nevertheless the given the children of Levi firstborn of man shalt thou all the tenth in Israel for surely redeem, and the an inheritance, for their firstling of unclean beasts service which they serve, shalt thou redeem. i the service of the Hebr. 7. 5, §, 16 And those that are tabernacle of the congrega- i ch. 3. 7, 8. to be redeemed from a tion. month old shalt thou reLev. 27.2, 6. deem, according to thine estimation, for the money of five shekels, after the shekel of the sanctuary, a which is twenty gerahs.

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23 m But the Levites ch. 3. 7. shall do the service of the tabernacle of the congregation, and they shall bear their iniquity: it shall be a statute for ever throughblood upon the altar, and out your generations, that shalt burn their fat for an among the children of Isoffering made by fire, for rael they have no inherita sweet savour unto the ance.

LORD.

d

24 But the tithes of" ver. 21.

18 And the flesh of them the children of Israel, shall be thine, as the wave which they offer as an Lev. 7. 31, 32, breast and as the right heave offering unto the shoulder are thine. LORD, I have given to the

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19 All the heave offer- Levites to inherit: thereings of the holy things, fore I have said unto them, which the children of Is- Among the children of ver. 20. rael offer unto the LORD, Israel they shall have no 14. 27, 29, & have I given thee, and thy inheritance.

Deut. 10. 9. &

18. 1.

BEFORE

CHRIST

of it.

BEFORE CHRIST

about 1471. Heb. fat.

ver. 12.

25 ¶ And the LORD ye shall offer every heave about 1471. spake unto Moses, saying, offering of the LORD, of all 26 Thus speak unto the the + best thereof, even the Levites, and say unto them, hallowed part thereof out When ye take of the children of Israel the tithes which I have given you from them for your inheritance, then ye shall offer up of from it, then it shall be ver. 27. an heave offering of it for counted unto the Levites

30 Therefore thou shalt say unto them, When ye have heaved the best there

P Neh. 10. 38. the LORD, even Pa tenth as the increase of the part of the tithe. threshingfloor, and as the

9 ver. 30.

27 9 And this your heave increase of the winepress. offering shall be reckoned 31 And ye shall eat it unto you, as though it were in every place, ye and your the corn of the threshing housholds: for it is your Matt. 10. 10. floor, and as the fulness of reward for your service in 1 Cor. 9. 13. the winepress. the tabernacle of the con- 1 Tim. 5. 18.

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Luke 10. 7.

& 22. 16.

28 Thus ye also shall gregation. offer an heave offering unto t 32 And ye shall bear Lev. 19. 8. the LORD of all your tithes, no sin by reason of it, when which ye receive of the ye have heaved from it the children of Israel; and best of it: neither shall ye ye shall give thereof the " pollute the holy things of Lev. 22. 2, LORD's heave offering to the children of Israel, lest Aaron the priest.

29 Out of all your gifts

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15.

PRAYER. LET US PRAY, that the thoughts of our hearts and the actions of our lives be always acceptable to God. That we depend on the intercession and atonement of Christ alone for the pardon of our sins and inconsistencies, and for the removal of the punishment which our sins have deserved. That we be contented with the evidences of prophecy, miracle, and the past state of the world, without desiring the revival of miracles to convince us of the truth of Revelation; and that we so go on with faith and hope to death, and heaven. O GOD, from whom all good things do come, grant to us Thy humble servants that by Thy holy inspiration we may think those things that be good, and by Thy merciful guiding may perform the same. May the words of our mouth, the meditations of our heart, and the actions of our life, be always acceptable to Thee; that we follow not the example of those who fell in the wilderness under the fire of Thine anger, and the fury of Thy displeasure. Save us from the sin of endeavouring, by vain and false reasoning, to reconcile the indulgence of the sins of the heart with the hope of Thy favour, and with the profession of Thy holy Religion. Save us from the presumption "of continuing in sin, that grace may abound." Save us from the hardness of heart which continues the dominion of sin within us. Save us from resolving to delay our repentance to some future day, and from persevering to offend Thee with the hope of pardon through Thy great but rejected and despised mercy. And because we have often sinned, in the days that are past, against light, and knowledge, and truth, and love, O, let it be so no more! "Spare us, good Lord;

spare Thy people." Forgive us all that is past. For the sake of Jesus Christ, Thine only Son our Lord, have mercy upon us. We plead before Thee the perfect obedience, the holy sacrifice, the death and passion, of Him whom Thou hast given to be the propitiation for the sins of men. As Thy servant Aaron, in the days of the Church in the wilderness, stood between the living and the dead, and Thy wrath was restrained in the midst of Thine anger, so do we, Thy sinful and dying creatures, come before Thee in the name of a better High Priest, of a holier Intercessor and Mediator than Aaron,-Jesus Christ, who liveth with Thee for ever. God and Father of the souls of men! hear our prayer; forgive our imperfections, our inconsistencies, and our sins. O Son of God! Redeemer of the world, have mercy upon us. Offer Thou our prayers to Thy Father and our Father, to Thy God and our God. Thou canst be touched with the feeling of our infirmities, the infirmities of Thy brethren in the human nature; for Thou wast in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. O hear our prayer. Be Thou our Mediator and Intercessor at the throne of God! O great High Priest! plead Thou our cause. Stand between the living and the dead. Remove the guilt of our sin by the sprinkling of Thy precious blood. Conquer the power of our sin by the influences of Thy Holy Spirit. Do away the punishment of our sin by Thy mercy, which reconciles the sinner to God. Thine agony and bloody sweat, by Thy cross and passion, by Thine unknown sufferings, by Thy precious death and burial, O Thou great High Priest, deliver us from the guilt, and the dominion, and the punishment of evil. We have no hope of pardon, we have no hope of the acceptance of our repentance, but through Thy mercy, O Son of God, our Strength and our Redeemer. And because we

By

have no other hope, nor comfort, nor consolation, under the burthen of remembered sin, but in Thy prevailing intercession; save us, we pray Thee, from the misery of the doubts and vain imaginations which require new signs from heaven, and demand more proofs of Thy grace and love, than those which Thy mercy hath granted to Thy Holy Church. May we be convinced, by the record of Thy wonders in the olden time, of the certainty of Thy revealed will. Open Thou our eyes to discern the fulfilment of the prophecies in the wanderings of Thy people Israel among us, in the condition of Nineveh and of Babylon, of Egypt and of Tyre, in the progress of Thy Gospel, and in the extension of Thy Church in the world. Every where, at all times, and in all places, may we see and know the proofs of the certain truth of Thy holy Revelation, and be satisfied with the demonstrations of Thy love to bless, and Thy power to punish. Strengthen our faith in the wonders of Thy Word. Lord, we believe: help Thou our unbelief. And so be with us, that we continue stedfast in Thy holy faith, contending against evil, and hoping in Thy mercy, through Christ, till the hour of our death arrive. Prepare us for that approaching hour. Absent from the body, may our souls be present with the Lord. Shew us now the path to life and heaven. In Thy presence is the fulness of the joy, that shall comfort the souls of Thy servants. At Thy right hand alone, where are Christ the Mediator, and the spirits of the just made perfect, are the pleasures which can satisfy the longings of our immortal souls. Be Thou our portion, now, in death, and in Thy house, and our house, in the heaven of heavens. Forgive our imperfect prayers. Accept our longing aspirations for a better state than the wilderness of this world. And bless us in heart and soul, for the sake of Jesus Christ our only Lord and Saviour. In His most holy words we call upon Thee, as

Our Father, &c.

The grace of our Lord, &c.

NOTES.

NOTE 1. On the proper force of the expression rendered in our Version," And the plague was stayed." Numb. xvi. 48.

Although our translation approaches nearer to the original than any of the other versions, ancient or modern, I cannot help thinking that a more exact rendering of the Hebrew, an is, "and the smiting was restrained." This more clearly points out that active agency of Divine vengeance, and that direct exercise of the hand of God, which the sacred writer seems to have in view, and which all the other versions I have met with injudiciously conceal; for the word "plague " carries the thoughts of the reader no further than to the notion of a sickness, or pestilence, which, though an infliction sent by the Almighty, is less immediately connected with His direct operation in our minds than the smiting with His hand.

NOTE 2. On the almond-tree and Aaron's rod, or tribal sceptre of the almond-tree. Numb. xvii. 3.

The rod of the almond-tree (ver. 8) was anciently used for walking-staves and sceptres, on account of its straightness and general suitableness. The Hebrews feign that all these thirteen rods were from one and the

same tree. "The almond-tree," says Cyril, quoted by Franc. Zephyrus, "was anciently the symbol of vigilance and watchfulness," à Tevigilans; because it is the first tree after winter that awakes from sleep and flourishes. Hence Jer. i. 11, "I see a wakeful rod," is by some rendered, "I see a rod of an almond-tree" (thus in our authorized English version). This almond rod, then, aptly signifies, that the right of the firstborn (which, among sons, is like the almond, first flourishing among trees), or that the priesthood, appertains to Aaron, whose rod here puts forth

buds.

NOTE 3. On the twofold notion of Deity among the ancient Israelites as the God of nature, and as the tutelar God of their nation 1.

I have adopted here the theory of Bishop Warburton respecting the mode in which the ancient Israelites regarded the Deity, to account for the manner in which they so frequently sinned, after the appeals made to them by miracle. When Moses first received his divine legation, we are told (Exod. iii. 13) that Moses said unto God, "Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them?" "Here," says Bishop Warburton, "we see a

1 Vide Introduction to the Section.

people, not only lost to all knowledge of the Unity (for the asking for a name necessarily implied their opinion of a plurality), but likewise possessed with the very spirit of Egyptian idolatry. The religion of NAMES was a matter of great consequence in Egypt. It was one of their essential superstitions; it was one of their native inventions, and the first of them which they communicated to the Greeks. . . . . A NAME was so peculiar an adjunct to a local tutelary deity, that we see by a passage quoted by Lactantius from the spurious books of Trismegist (which, however, abounded with Egyptian notions and superstitions), that the One Supreme God had no name or title of distinction. Zechariah, evidently alluding to these notions, when he prophesies of the worship of the Supreme God, unmixed with idolatry, says, 'In that day shall there be one Lord, and his name One;' that is, only bearing the simple title of 'Lord.' And, in the words of Lactantius, 'Ac ne quis nomen ejus requireret, ANONYMON esse dixit; eo quod nominis PROPRIETATE non egeat, ob ipsam scilicet UNITATEM.' Out of indulgence, therefore, to this weakness, God was pleased to give Himself a NAME. 'And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.' (Exod. iii. 14.) Where we may observe (according to the constant method of Divine Wis lom, when it condescends to the prejudices of men) how, in the very instance of indulgence to their superstition, He gives a corrective of it. The religion of names arose from an idolatrous polytheism; and the name here given, implying eternity and self-existence, directly opposeth that superstition 2."

"God, in His infinite wisdom, was pleased also to stand in two arbitrary relations towards the Jewish people, besides that natural one in which He stood towards them and the rest of mankind in common. The first was that of a

tutelary Deity, gentilitial and local; the God

of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, who was to bring their posterity into the land of Canaan, and to protect them there as His peculiar people. The second was that of Supreme Magistrate and Lawgiver. And in both these relations He was pleased to refer it to the people's free choice, whether or no they would receive Him for their God and King; for a tutelary Deity was supposed by the ancients to be as much matter of election as a civil magistrate. . . . As the renouncing Him for King was the throwing Him off as God, and as the renouncing Him for God was the throwing Him off as King; idolatry, which

2 Warburton, Div. Legat. b. iv. sect. 6.

was the rejecting Him as God, was properly the crimen lase majestatis, and so justly punishable by the civil laws. ... Let us observe further that as by such INCORPORATION religious matters came under civil consideration, so likewise civil matters came under the religious. This is what Josephus would say where, in his second book against Apion, speaking of the Jewish theocracy, he tells us that Moses did not make religion a part of virtue, but virtue a part of religion. The meaning is, that, as in all human societies, obedience to the law is moral virtue; under a theocracy it is religion 3."

"Theocracy, as it was necessary, so it would have an easy reception, being founded on the flattering notion, at that time universally entertained, of TUTELARY DEITIES, gentilitial and local. Thus, to carry on His great purpose, the Almighty very early represented Himself to this chosen race as a gentilitial Deity. The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (see Jer. x. 16; li. 19), afterwards, when He preferred Judea to all other countries for His personal residence (on this account called HIS LAND4), He came under their

3 Div. Legat. book v. sect. 2.

4 Lev. xx. 23. Deut. xi. 12. Ps. x. 16. Isa. xiv. 25. Jer. ii. 7. Ezek. xxxvi. 5; xxxviii. 16.

idea of a local Deity; which notion was an established principle in the Gentile world. It was originally Egyptian, and founded on an opinion that the earth was at first divided by its Creator amongst a number of inferior and subordinate divinities. The Septuagint translators appear to have understood the following passage, in the Song of Moses, as alluding to this opinion: 'When the Most High divided to the nations their inheritance, when He separated the sons of Adam, He set the bounds of the people according to the number of the children of Israel. They wrote, carà ἀριθμὸν ἀγγέλων Θεοῦ, ‘according to the number of the angels of God.' Which at least is intelligible, as referring to that old notion original to the country where this translation was made. Justin Martyr tells us", that in the beginning God had committed the government of the world to angels, whe, abusing their trust, were degraded from their regency. But whether he learnt it from this translation, or took it from a worse place, I shall not pretend to determine 6"

5 Apologet. 1.

Div. Legat. chap. v. sect. 2.

SECTION CLV. NUMBERS XIX.

TITLE. It is not possible to understand the Holy Scriptures, unless we consider them as one completed Revelation. Four reasons for considering this Section as the most remarkable portion of the Old Testament. The doctrines of atonement of Christ to pardon sin, and the influence of the Holy Spirit to remore the power of sin, are the sum and substance of the whole Revelation of God to The ordinance of the burning of the red heifer, and the mingling of its ashes with water, considered.

man.

INTRODUCTION. When a book is commended to our notice as worthy of our perusal and approbation, if we deem its subject interesting we read it through, and we then obtain the more perfect knowledge of its object and contents, by comparing one part with another, and reflecting on the beginning, the middle, and the end. Just so it is with the Holy Scriptures. "The Bible," in the wellknown words of Mr. Locke," has God for its Author, salvation for its end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter." The Bible, therefore, is deeply interesting to all who believe in the immortality and natural ignorance of the soul. But the Scriptures were given to the world at sundry times, and in divers manners, as the Church required the increase of its knowledge; and it can be only understood by regarding it as one gradually imparted, but now com

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