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thus made a pre-figurative symbol ; the prescience of the Deity having been desirous by this his original appointment of calculating time, to show us that the death and resurrection of the body of Christ should take place at those appointed periods, to the end that the mortal body of the Son of God, should be the shortest possible time subject to the dominion and power of death, and which view the psalmist, as has been recently observed confirms with respect to the brief continuance of the Saviour's person in the grave, by prophetically personating Christ, in this peculiar form of words :
“Wherefore my heart was glad, and my glory rejoiced: my flesh also shall rest in hope.
“For why? thou shalt not leave my soul in hell : neither shalt thou suffer thy holy one to see corruption.”
Christian commentators, without an exception that I am aware of, have decided, that the death and resurrection of the Son of God, took place on the Evening and the Morning, in order that the “prepared body" of “God the Word made Flesh," might continue the shortest possible time in the grave; and here the psalmist virtually confirms that truly scriptural
decision, and directly declares the reason for this original and divine appointment of thus computing the natural day,—viz. “That Christ's body should not see corruption.”
Christ on the cross, with the beginning of time, and thus apostrophized in his death and resurrection, in his declared character of “ The Lamb slain from the foundation of the world,” shows us that it is necessary to our everlasting salvation, that we also rightly believe the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ, of which St. Athanasius thus speaks :
“For the right faith is, that we believe and confess : that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and Man.
“ God of the substance (divine essence) of the Father : begotten before the worlds : and Man of the substance of his mother born into the world :
“Perfect God, and perfect Man: of a reasonable soul and human flesh subsisting :"
Zech. xiii. 7 says:
“Awake O sword, against my Shepherd : and against the man that is my fellow.”
Christ therefore assuredly is-
head : and inferior to the Father as touching his manhood:
“Who although he be God and Man: yet is he not two, but one Christ.”
When we see the Psalmist pointing to the reason why the crucifixion of the true Messiah occurred in the “Evening,” and bear in mind, that he does not obliquely glance at the cause, but assigns this very direct reason, viz:that the material body of our Lord should not see corruption, we must, by connecting the event with the time of Christ's death, perceive, that the Deity is in the word, “Evening," prophesying by an action eternally designed, and to be openly and visibly displayed, both to the Jews and Romans, who were alike accessary to the murder of that mortal body, in which the glory of the divinity was united to the flesh, and of whose distinctive personal natures, scripture thus makes mention. “For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. Col. ii. 9.; but if the reader will compute the number of hours intervening between Christ's demise and the resurrection, he will find that the predicted time for the Saviour's continuance in the grave, corresponds with the method of reckoning
the natural day by the “Evening and the Morning,” and had God himself for its author, and differs from every other established method of calculation adopted by the most ancient nations of the Eastern world, because applicable only in its purpose and meaning to events connected with Christ exclusively.
When on earth Christ predicted his own crucifixion, saying “ I, if I be lifted up, will draw all men unto me;" and in addition to this, the time for the suspension of animation in his body, had also been predicted with precise accuracy; “ Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up again.” The Jews looking only to the magnificent structure rebuilt by Herod, and forgetful of the prophecy of inspired Jacob, do not seem to have remembered that the regal dignity was departed from the tribe of Judah, and treated the language and the divine speaker with equal contumely; whereas, the language used is not destroy this temple, and in three days I will build it up again, but “ I will raise it up again;" this expressive form of speech being made use of, in reference to his own attested resurrection, not indeed witnessed by the body of the Jewish nation and the Romans, but by witnesses chosen from the beginning
In conclusion, if the reader will consider the contents of 15th chapter of St. Paulto the Corinthians with requisite attention, he will perceive, that the fearfully solemn transactions and their consequences, both temporal and eternal, everlastingly ordained to ensue in the “Evening and the Morning," of Christ's death and resurrection ; in which amazing events God and man were so intimately and vitally concerned, that the awful solemnities appointed to take place, before the beginning of the creation; did alone relate to “ the Lamb slain from the beginning of the world," and were of such transcendent magnitude and import, as to induce the Deity to prophecy rather by the very impressive manner of action, and occular demonstration, than the more ordinary and general way of speech. But let the reader himself examine the whole tenour and scope of the Sacred Records, and he will find, that reckoning the natural day by the “ Evening and the Morning," can no where in the intire amount of the sacred text, be found to connect these periods of time in the sense in which