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stay and comfort of the departing soul: may this great comfort add peace and rest to our souls at that hour, not only that infirmity and sorrow shall cease for ever, but that the very possibility of falling away from God and Christ, and from the holiness which they have commanded, and which is the best happiness, shall cease for ever: so may our sinful souls, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, ever be Thine inheritance: so mayest Thou, Holy, Blessed, Glorious, Mysterious Trinity, be our heritage and our portion in heaven for ever. Whom have we in heaven but Thee? And there is none upon earth that we, whether living or dying, desire in comparison of Thee. Hear, O Lord God, hear our imperfect petitions, which we offer in the name and in the words of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Our Father, &c.

The grace of our Lord, &c.


NOTE. On the several insertions of the declaration that Moses gave a charge to Joshua.

As it seemed good to Jehovah to deprive both Moses and Aaron of the high privilege of entering the promised land, and, as those two distinguished servants of God had long exercised their special and important functions in the eyes of the people, we might naturally expect to see very distinct and frequent intimations of the Divine will respecting the person who was destined to lead the hosts of Israel into that land, to the verge of which their great lawgiver was to conduct them, and then to disappear. Accordingly, before Aaron and Moses leave the stage, another personage makes his appearance upon it, bearing the plainest and most unquestionable credentials of his destination to the honour of succeeding Moses, as the leader of the people of God:-this was Joshua. His original name was Oshea; his father's name was Nun, of the tribe of Ephraim. And not only did Moses change his name to Joshua, as marking his special designation to his high office, and his character as a type of Jesus Christ, the true Joshua, who leads His own people into the heavenly Canaan,—but he, on several occasions, gives various charges to him, as intimations of the functions which he would shortly be called upon to fulfil. The first of these is mentioned in Exod. xvii. 14 1. The selection of Joshua as the representative of the tribe of Ephraim, when the twelve spies were sent out to search the land, is the second occasion on which Joshua appears with a public charge; and the promise made to him by Jehovah, that he should, along with Caleb, enter the promised land, is the

1 See also Exod. xxiv. 13.

next occasion in which he is brought before us, with an intimation that he would have to sustain an important office. We next hear of him in Numb. xxvii. 18-23, where his approaching elevation to his high dignity is thus set forth: "And the Lord said unto Moses, Take thee Joshua the son of Nun, a man in whom is the spirit, and lay thine hand upon him; and set him before Eleazar the priest, and before all the congregation; and give him a charge in their sight. And thou shalt put some of thine honour upon him, that all the congregation of the children of Israel may be obedient. And he shall stand before Eleazar the priest, who shall ask counsel for him after the judgment of Urim before the Lord at his word shall they go out, and at his word they shall come in, both he and all the children of Israel with him, with all the congregation. And Moses did as the Lord commanded him and he took Joshua, and set him before Eleazar the priest, and before all the congregation; and he laid his hands upon him, and gave him a charge, as the Lord commanded by the hand of Moses." This may be regarded as the Divine declaration of Joshua's solemn investiture with the authority to lead the people, which had been so long and faithfully exercised by Moses. To this Moses himself refers (Deut. i. 37, 38), "The Lord was angry with me for your sakes, saying, Thou also shalt not go in thither. But Joshua the son of Nun, which standeth before thee, he shall go in thither: encourage him for he shall cause Israel to inherit it." Again (Deut. iii. 28), "Charge Joshua, and encourage him, and strengthen him for he shall go over before this people, and he shall cause them to inherit the land which thou shalt see."

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TITLE.-The subject of prophecy further considered. phecy may be divided into three classes,—the pastists, presentists, and futurists ; and their several theories of interpretation are partly right, and partly wrong. The certainty of this truth is illustrated by the Song of Moses. The object of prophecy is to predict sin and its punishment, its pardon and removal. The predictions in the Song of Moses have been fulfilled, are being fulfilled, and remain to be fulfilled. But while they are thus general, there are more especial and peculiar accomplishings, which compel the conviction of their Divine origin. The sins, the punishments, the restorations of Israel are


INTRODUCTION. -We proceed to consider the subject of prophecy. We defined prophecy to be the impartation by the Almighty of a portion of that knowledge which is present to Himself. With Him is no future: to the mind of man, that which is neither past nor present is unavoidably future. Because, then, the objects of prophecy are in one sense the same in all ages; because they are imparted by one God, to one end, in one system, and as one portion only of the one great plan of Providence which is governing the world; and because the design of that system and plan in all ages is to reprove sin, to declare its punishments, and to assure the sinful individual, or the sinful nation, of the removal of that punishment upon the extension of the influence of the one true Religion, either to the heart of man, or to the mass of the people; and because also the details of the progressive history by which these great truths are to be enforced by the prophets could not be given in detail, on account of the quantity of matter which would be then revealed, and could not be given with so much clearness, that men could endeavour to set aside its testimony: therefore, from these and other causes, there has ever been much obscurity in the language in which the general meaning of the prophecies of the future has been conveyed. Two painful consequences have resulted from this obscurity: One is, that the opponents of the truth of Religion have declared that the prophecies have been mere fancies in their origin, and mere coincidences in their fulfilment. The other is, that the humble believer has been perplexed and bewildered by the innumerable theories and calculations, the clashing data, and conflicting conclusions, of Christian interpreters. To the former of these-to the infidel who rejects the doctrine of prophecy-we may observe, that the general predictions of punishment against evil abound in minutenesses of detail, which could not have proceeded from unassisted human wisdom or forethought. To the latter to the perplexed yet humble inquirer after truth-we answer that, while the minutenesses of the fulfilment of various prophecies proves the Divine superintendence over the minds of the writers-the very generality of the lofty

subjects of prophecy compels the use of language which will in all ages be applicable to the existing generations of mankind, and will consequently produce much difficulty in appropriating the particular prophecies to particular periods. While the prophecies may all be said to refer generally to sin and its punishments, by the calamities of individuals and nations; to sin and its removal, by the mercy and power of Christ, and to the details of His character, conduct, and government in all ages; and while the prophecies refer to sin and its removal by the power of the Holy Spirit from the hearts of individuals, and eventually, as the universal curse, from the universal family of man—the result of this generality of prophecy is twofold. One is, that the peculiar language of prophecy seems to be in all ages applicable to the existing age, by its adaptation to the sins, the punishments, and the mercies which abound. The other is, that as it relates to the eventual, final, certain overthrow of the dominion of evil, it must relate to a period which has not yet arrived. Three things, therefore, are always to be observed by the student of prophecy: one is, that prophecy contains much that has been already fulfilled; the next is, that prophecy contains much that is being fulfilled; the third is, that prophecy contains much that remains to be fulfilled. From this threefold view of prophecy has resulted that unhappy consequence of which the humble believer complains. Instead of being satisfied with the general confirmation afforded by the past and present minute fulfilment of so many great and undeniable anticipations of the final development of the universal influence of the truth, the students of prophecy frame curious but uncertain, interesting but doubtful, ingenious but questionable, theories of the more explicit, detailed, traceable modes in which the Inspirer of the prophecies will establish the dominion of Christ, and the influence of His Religion. Every splendid and magnificent metaphor, every graphic description of crimes, calamities, and judgments, every unfixed date of years and days, is enlisted into the service of an hypothesis. Years roll on; sins, crimes, punishments, and judgments, afflict the world and the Church; and the language of prophecy seems to be adapted to them all. The consequence has been, that the interpreters of prophecy may be said to have become divided into three classes, according to their respective calculations of the times in which the predictions of God are supposed to be fulfilled. They may be called the pastists, the presentists, and the futurists. The pastists are those who would prove to us that the prophecies have already been all fulfilled. The presentists are those who hold that the prophecies are now being fulfilled. The futurists are those who say that the great bulk of the prophecies have not been fulfilled, and are not now fulfilling, but remain to be fulfilled. All these may be defended by arguments which are either refuted, or supported with difficulty; and all are maintained by thoughtful, reflecting, and believing men: and the foundation of the interpretations, or of the theories on which their interpretations rest, may be declared to be such an admixture of certainty and truth, that they are partly defensible and partly indefensible. While the restoration of the Jews, the overthrow of Paganism, the extirpation of Infidelity, and the rooting out of the garden of God of the tares of falsehood,

Popery, irreligion, heresy, and schism, and the general establishment of the best form of Christian faith, and the best mode of Christian governments, are all predicted; yet the times and the end are not so clearly made known, even from the numbering of the years which are mentioned in the Inspired Volume. The prophecies abound in minute accomplishings and general results; and the more especial and peculiar fulfilments prove only the certainty of those general results. And because all prophecy, as we have said, refers only to sin and its punishment, to sin and its pardon, to sin and its removal; and the sins, the punishments, the pardons, and the removal of sin ever continue-therefore we may say that the prophecies have both been fulfilled, are being fulfilled, and still remain to be fulfilled: and the best illustration, perhaps, of this view of the prophecies generally, may be said to be afforded us by the prophecy in this Section, which contains an account of the conduct and destinies of the Church of Israel from the day of their entrance into the Land of Promise to the very conclusion of their marvellous history, in that still future period, when the Gentile nations and the Jewish nation, that is, all mankind, shall form, as they did after the deluge, one united Church of God. We shall see that we may say with truth of the prophecies with which the mission of Moses is concluded, that they have been fulfilled, that they are being fulfilled, and that they still remain to be fulfilled. To make the argument more clear, we will imagine that we are commenting on the prophecy in the days of the last of the Apostles, and reasoning on the fulfilment of the predictions of Moses, as St. Paul and his coadjutors reasoned, and therefore as we ourselves may reason. On looking then into the prophecy, we find that it may be divided in the manner I have mentioned. It begins with enumerating the sins of Israel (ver. 15-21). It goes on to relate their punishment (ver. 22-25). It proceeds with the causes of their deliverance from total destruction (ver. 26-28). It predicts the united infliction of plagues upon themselves and their enemies if they still persist in sin (ver. 29-40). And it concludes with the solemn prophecy which was accomplished at the end of the Babylonish captivity, which St. Paul refers to as being accomplished in his own age, and which we of the Holy Catholic Church fondly believe will take place more fully, more evidently, more universally, when the kingdoms of a fallen earth become the kingdoms of a pardoning God. To make the argument more clear, we will select the same expressions from each of the five divisions, and see in what manner the interpretation of the pastist, the presentist, and the futurist, may each be justified in applying and interpreting the prophecy to the upholding of his own theory. "Is not the sin of Israel, the sin of Jeshurun gone by ?" might the Jew, as a pastist, say, in the time of our Saviour. "Does the Jew now serve strange gods? (ver. 18.)-Is he now unmindful of the Rock' that formed him?-Does he now provoke God to jealousy?—Is not the sin of the Jew gone by? and does he not so keep the law, that he will tithe even the mint, the anise, and the cummin, rather than offend the God of Moses?—The prophecy, therefore, can only refer to the idolatries of Canaan, and the sins which preceded the captivity.—Are not the punishments of Israel also over?-Does the anger of the God of Israel now burn unto


the lowest hell?-Are mischiefs now heaped upon them?-Are God's arrows now spent upon them?-We have the Romans among us, it is true; but we have been restored to our own Judea; and those prophecies were only then all fulfilled, when the siege of Jerusalem, and the eating of their own children by the delicate women, spake the outpouring of the wrath of God.—We are at peace in our Canaan.—The third part of the prophecy relates, it is true, to us as well as to our fathers.-They were restored, lest the Chaldæan and the Amalekite should exalt their own power over the God of Israel, and say, 'Our hand alone has punished Israel:' and the God who then delivered our fathers, now continues to protect their children.-No less has the fourth part of the prophecy been fulfilled, when God rewarded them according to their obedience, or punished them according to their disobedience. And the fifth part also of the prophecy was accomplished, when the decrees of Nebuchadnezzar, and of Cyrus, and of Darius were fulfilled, which commanded that men should tremble before the God of Daniel, and that the heathen should assist our fathers in the building of the temple; and the nations rejoiced with his people, and God was merciful to his land and to his people.”—Such would be the language of the pastist. “All that you say is true" (would the presentist, whom we may believe would be a follower of Christ and His Apostles, reply); "but the prophecy of Moses is being fulfilled at present.-Are you not unmindful of Christ, the true Messiah, who has come into the world, and who is the true Rock, the only Rock of the Church and do you not provoke God to jealousy, when you depend on your own self-righteousness, and not on the true Sacrifice for sin?—Is not the punishment of your sin upon you when the Romans are among you, and will prove to you if you dare to attempt to throw off their heathen yoke, that God's fire is kindled in His anger? The causes of your preservation shall remain, it is true; for other prophecies remain to be accomplished to your nation. And not even the Romans shall be able to destroy you. You will, therefore, be preserved but God's plagues are beginning now to be poured out upon you, and both the enemies of Jerusalem and yourselves shall be still punished as the witness to all the world. The proof, too, that this prophecy is now being fulfilled at this present moment, is, that we, the Apostles of the true Messiah, are beginning to make the Gentile nations rejoice with His people; and the common Lord of the Gentile and of the Jew will be merciful to you who are converted, and to those who are converted to Christianity; so that now, even now, before Jerusalem falls, you are both one Church and one people.”—“ You are both right," the futurist will say; "but the prophecy, in all its parts will still be more evidently fulfilled than it has ever hitherto been. The Jews shall still for a long time provoke God to jealousy by remaining unmindful of the true Messiah, the only Rock on which the Universal Church of the Gentile and of the Jew shall be built. They will still long provoke God to jealousy and though the time of their restoration may be near, and they are about to return to Canaan, severe judgments and calamities will still prove the anger of God against them, unless they accept the spiritual Messiah. They shall never be utterly destroyed, lest the Christian nations, or the infidel faction, or the

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