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general ignorance and negligence of mankind, with regard to the path of life, and that“ strait was I.k.13.244 the gate and narrow the way which leads unto life, and few there were then that found it:" but now this path was to be crouded with people from all nations. The visional multitude, as promissive of the numerous conversions to be made to Christianity, meets the view of the prophet, and he asks “ who are these who come as a cloud, and Is. 60. % who fly as doves to their windows?” While darkness covered the earth, and thick darkness the nations, on that blessed region Jehovah was to rise, and his glory was to be seen on it. Nations were now to walk in her light, and kings in the brightness of her rising ;* i. e. her dawn, or glory of her morning star. The inhabitants of the numerous isles, termed the noise of the sea, were to pour into her.
This light, it would appear, is the visional presence of Christ, as the Lamb slain, a blessing which, till then, this region had been without. This St. Paul expresses, where he says,
" that by Heb.10.16 one offering Messiah perfected, for ever, them who were sanctified,” or they who had been set
* “ To the brightness of thy rising." In our version this is apt to be mistook, as if the person addressed were Messiah. It is Jerusalem, for the word thy is feminine. Rising is not a participle, but a substantive (Zerach) and is a synonyme with morning star
apart to this region, many ages
perfection which he conferred may be viewed to be that nearness of union to which they were now admitted, termed the stature of the fulness of Christ, and which was to be the measure of attainment to all who should come after into that « rest which remaineth for the people of God.” Heb.1.9.
This view will confer an additional force and beauty on the words which Christ speaks, a little before his ascension, when he was just going to appear as the Tzemek, or Rising, to that invisible world. « Lo, I am with you always, until the completion of the future age,” when the Orach-Jamim, or length of days assigned to that state would be expired. Matt. 28.20.
When Isaiah speaks of nations walking in the light of this city, its parallel in the Revelation explains and limits these, by telling us that they are the nations of them that are saved, plainly implying that these had now come out from the world, and were separated, and “ become sons and daughters to God.” When St. Paul terms the Jerusalem which is above, the mother of us all, he speaks in the name of every believer, that that glorious metropolis would be the place of general rendezvous for the children of God of every age, and from
clime. We are called upon to take heed to this more sure word of prophecy, until in the event of death
the day dawn, and we enter into that country where our eyes will open on the bright and morning star. Christ, in the book of Revelation, marks the time when, in the most definitive language--that it is to take place at the conclusion of life. “ To him that overcometh and keepeth my works unto the end, I will give the morning star," i.e. I will bring him to that country where my rays shall meet his eyes, which have now been closed in death. Chap. ii. 28.
In that divine song, inscribed Solomon's, there is a passage, in which time and its darkness are termed mountains (Bether) of division. The retiring of earth from the view, and the light which succeeds, mark the flight of the shadows and the arrival of the dawn, “ until the day break, and the shadows flee away; turn my beloved, and be thou like a roe or a young hart upon the mountains of division.” Cant. 2.17.
The soul being admitted into Paradise, has now escaped from darkness and shadows, is under the bright sky of the morning, and by means of the day-star, enjoys a full ant cipation of that glorious day which is to follow.
In a passage of Zechariah we have the office of the Tzemek, or day-star, particularly delineated. *« Behold the man, the Rising is his
* On this passage the Chaldee paraphrases in this manner: Behold the nan, Messiah is his name, who is to be revealed and magnified, and he shall build the temple of the Lord.
name: he shall rise from under him (mi-tahtiav;)" that is, from earth, which is not his original, but from this lower world, he will rise and enter upon the office of morning star,“ and shall build the temple of the Lord; and he himself shall build the temple pf the Lord ; and he himself shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule upon his throne; and he shall be a priest upon his throne ; and the counsel of peace shall be between them both.” Chap. 6.21,23.
He shall build the temple of the Lord, as being its chief corner stone, in whom the whole building is fitly, framed together : not only converting them upon earth, but gathering their souls to himself, and bringing them to the measure of the stature of his own fulness. He shall sit and rule on his throne; that is, subject all the affairs and events of earth to his controul, and make them his footstool.He shall be a priest on his throne, employed still in the office of presenting spiritual sacrifices unto the Father; not only of his church without, but of that which is within the veil, who are serving God in his temple. And the counsel of peace shall be between them both, even the plan of the intermediate state, in which great work both the Father and the Son have their distinct agencies, a symbolical representation of which is given in the river of life ftowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb.
Messiah himself in a conversation which he had with his disciples, just before his crucifixion, has fully displayed, although in general terms, his office of day-star. He does it in the solemn manner of the prophets.
« The hour cometh when I shall speak to you no longer in proverbs ;” i. e. in the figurative language of earth, “but I shall shew you plainly of the Father:" John, xvi. 25. which it is impossible can be meant of any term of time here; because while time remains, the language of any teaching in things pertaining to the kingdom of God, is and must be unavoidably figurative. Therefore shewing them plainly of the Father: giving them the morning star—the day-star rising in their hearts, appear to be equivalent, and the amount may be conceived to be this, that he will, in the mode of communication peculiar to that world, spread out in clear display before them, a full view of what the Father has promised shall take place at the last day. Of these views they are put in such complete possession, that they are said to be inheriting the promises. This interval is the real dawning, when the morning star dispenses
and fills the hearts of his people with joy. He now no longer speaks in figures of earth, but shews them plainly from the Father what is yet awaiting them.