Page images
[ocr errors][ocr errors]

your Glory. 37. Give thanks unto him that hath called you
to the Heavenly Kingdom.
Note, Efdras has a Vifiou how he will be commanded bere.

afrer, when he rises from the Dead to convert the Jews;
bur they will despise bis Preaching, and then he will
convert the Gentiles, when Chrift is nigh ar band. 'Iis
said Ch. 13. of some of the Ten Tribes who will re-
turn, v. 13. some were glad, and some were sorry, some
were bound, that is, were stopt from returning others
offered Gifts : And Daniel says, Ch. 12. v. 1o. Many
shall be purified, and made wbite, and tried ; bur the
Wicked shall do wickedly, and none of the Wicked
Ihall underftand; bur the Wise fliall underftand.

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

That those wbo rise from the Grave, will endeavour to convert the Jews, we may be informed by Daniel 12. v. 3. They that be wise, fall shine as the Firmament in Brighcnels, and they that turn many to Righteousness, as the Stars, for ever and ever; and Malachi, Ch. 4. v.5. I will fend you Elijab the Prophet, before the coming of the great and dreadful Day of the Lord. v. 6. And he shall turn the Hearts of the Fathers to the Children, and the Hearts of the Children to the Fathers, left I come and smile the Earth wiiba Curse, V. 18. of this Chapter, 'ris said, I will send my Servant Ejay, and Jeremy for thy help. And at that time that will happen, which is written Matth. 1o. v. 35. I am come to let a Man at variance againft his father, and the Daughter against the Mother. V. 36. And a Man's Foes shall be they of his own. Houshold. To reconcile these Differences about Religion, all these Propbets will be sent.

The present Chriftian Churches, as well as the Jews, be. lieve, that the Kingdom of the Meffiah will begin with the Resurrection. And some thought, our Saviour was Jeremy, or one of the Prophers, Matobo 16. v. 14 raised from the Dead, to be Harbingers to the Meffiah. And after Chrift's Resurrection, Aats 1. v. 6, the Disciples asked, wbether at that time he would reftore the Kingdom to Ifrael. This No. rion the Jews had from Esdras: And then will be fulfilled wbat our Saviour said to his Disciples; You will not have finished, pisats, or converted ibe Cities of Israel, till the Son of Man come: that only can convert the obftinate Fews.

V, 38. Arise up, and Aand; behold the Number of those that be realed in the Feast of the Lord, to be removed from this World into Paradise above, is described by the sealing or confirming the suft, and sealing them to a Feat: So when the Ifraelites were delivered from Ægypt, they kept the Pal. chal Feast.

39. Which are departed from the Shadow of the World, (that is, are now dead) and have received glorious Garments of the Lord : So in Revelations the 7th, the Jews are sealed, and the Saints are clothed in white Robes, and Palms in their Hands; and the Saints Souls, Ch. 6.0. 11. had white Robes.

40. Take thy Number, O Sion, and shut up those that are clothed in white, who have followed the Law of the Lord ; (the 144 Thousand, Rev. 7en.) A very few Jews are laved, if this relates to the Millennium : But fince they are fhut up, they are in Paradise: And that Number relates to the firft Converts, as Firft Fruits to God and the Lamb. Es ay 26. v. 19. describes the Resurrection, when she Jews will return and Ging ibat Song.

41. The Number of thy Children whom thou longeft for is fulfilled ; beseech the Power of the Lord, that thy People which have been called from the Beginning, be hala lowed.

42. Esdras, besides the Jews mentioned, saw a great People on Mount Sion, whom he could not number; and they all praised the Lord wish Songs; and he asked the An. gel who they were ?

45. He answered, these be they that have pur off the mortal Clothing, and put on the Immortal, and have confelfed the Name of God, and now are they crowned, and receive Palms.

46. What young Man is it that crou neth them?

47. It is the Son of God, wbom they have confeffed in the World.

48. The Angel commands Efdras to tell the People, the Ten Tribes in Media, what manner of things, and how great Wonders of the Lord his God, he had seen.

The great Wonders are the Return of the Ten Tribes, the Resurrection of their Anceitors to be their Leaders, their Heaven like Kingdom ar Ferufalem, the declaring of the Mefiah to the Jews and Gentiles the glorious State of the Dead, who will be clorhed and crowned for confef. fing Chrif the Son of God. These great Wonders would

animate the Fews under their Caprivity, and give them a firm Hope in God's Mercy, for a happier Stare bereafter. And since Esdras writ his Prophecy in Media, or ai Babylon, the whole Prophecy was defigned for the use of the Ten Tribes in Media, where they were very much encreased in the Days of Josephus.

Since we may presume thar Efdras delivered his Prophecies in the same Order as they were given him by the Angel; and this Prophecy was not given at the time of his being in Babylon, 30 Years after the Ruin of Jerusalem, but after the taking of Babylon, he was in Media till the time of Artaxerxes, Ch. 1. 0. 3. a Captive, carried thither with Daniel by Darius Medus: Therefore we may conjecture, that the Firit and Second Chapter ought to have been a distinct Book, and, according to chie Order of Time, after the following Prophecies.

I will here collect what Efdras farther faith about the State of the Dead, or the Millennium.

[ocr errors]

Ch. 4. V.7. The Angel asked Esdras, amongst other things which he knew not, which are the Oui. goings of Paradile ? v. 8. Peradventure thou wilt say, I never went down into the Deep, nor as yer into Hell ; neither did I ever climb up into Heaven. V. 35. Did not the Souls also of the Righteous ask Questions of these things in their Chambers, saying, How long fiall I hope on this fashion ? when comerb the Fruit of the Flower of our Reward ? This is like the Complaint of the Souls under the Altar, Rev. 6.

2 ESdr. Ch. 6. v. 2. mentions the laying the Foundation of Paradise in the Beginning of the Creation ; and verse 5. that they are sealed who gather Faith for a Treasure.

Ch. 7. Esdras plainly distinguishes betwixt the Piace of the Body, and the Souls, after Deach.

V. 32. The Earih fhall restore those that be adeep in her, and so Ihall the Duft shole that dwell in Glence ; and the secret Places shall deliver those Souls that were commit, ted to them.

Ch. 8. v. 19. This is the Beginning of clie Words of Eldras before he was taken up.

V.52, Is a large Description of the Millenary Paradise, the Tree of Life, a Ciry builded, Plenicousness, &c.


Ch. 14. v. g. Thou shalt be taken away from all, and from henceforth thou Malt remain with my Son, and wich such as are like ther, until the times are ended.

Subdue your Underftandings, reform your Hearts, ye shall be kept alive, and after Dcath ye shall obrain Mercy: 35. Bur after Death fhall the Righteous come, when we shall live again ; and then Mall the Names of the Righteous be manifett, and the Works of the Ungodly fall be declared.

Ch. 15. v. 8. The innocent and righteous Blood crieth
unto me, and the Souls of the Just complain continually:
Therefore, faith the Lord, I will avenge them, verfe 9.
Note, That Esdras afferts a Paradise in this Creation, by

mentioning the laying its Foundation in the Beginning of
the Creation,



Note, He diftinguishes the Two Hades, the Deep or Hell,

into which the wicked Souls descend, and the Chambers of the Righteous, and the climbing up into Heaven, when they go thither. These are the secret Places, he says, he was to be taken up into, and to remain with God's Son : The Souls of the Just complain con

tinually. Note, They are sealed who gather Faith for a Trea:

fure : They are sealed in the Feaft of the Lord ; they are departed from the Shadow of the World, and received glorious Garments ; they are cloched in White : this is in their separate Stare. Origen says, the Souls will have Bodies given them suitable to che Place they are in , that is, Æsherial Bodies.

Note, The Fews will
return to Sion, a great

Рео. ple: And there they praise God with Songs : There will be their Heavenly Kingdom ; and there they will be crowned by the Son of God: The • Heathen were to look for their Shepherd : Tbey must be ready to receive the Reward of the King. dom.

[ocr errors]

From this Chapter the Fews had their Tradition of their last Return at the Resurrection of their Patriarchs and Prophets ; and this will be on Earth a Heavenly Kingdom, and the Heathen Believers will be admitted into it. This agrees with the 7th of the Revelations ; which may be applied both to the sending of obe Saints into their separate State, as well as their Sealing by St. Michael their Angel, who is to stand up for them at their Return, Dan. 12. But it seems to me molt probably; to belong to Saints in Paradise, both the Jews and Gentile Saints are there ; and thence they will come into the Millennium. These have put off the mortal Cloathing, that is, been dead, and put on the Immortal ; they are raised from the Dead in the Beginning of the Millennium.

[ocr errors]

Chap. 2. 0.7! Let them be scattered abroad amongst the Heatben; let their Names be put out of the Earth. This is now true concerning the Ten Tribes, who are Scatter'd amongst the Eattern and Northern Nations, and appear not as a Nation any where. And Micab mentions their Disperfion like the Dew, or scattered

Vide Sept. Lambs in the Field : so will the Remnant of Facob be amongst many people, not gather'd together, nor appearing amongft the Sons of Men : Burar laft that Remnant would conquer, as a Lion does, all other Nations amongst whom they are dispers’d, Micah s. Note, That the Saints, or Chriftians, are said to be

sealed when they are baptiz'd, and when they de. part this world, and when they come into Chrift's Kingdom. To these three Sealings this Prophecy relates; but moft evidently, to the sealing in the Feaft of the Lord, which is called in the Revelations, the Marriage-Supper of the Lamb, in the Be. ginning of the Millennium.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

St. Peter, in his Second Epifle, Ch. 3. v. 10. calls the Millennium the Day of the Lord, in which the Heavens will pass away: And v. 8. he gives this Reason for it; because one Day with the Lord is as a thousand Years, and a thousand Years as one Day ; viz. We must look for the coming of the Day of the Lord. And Sr. Paul calls the time of the Millennium, Rom. ch. 2. 0. 5. the Day


« PreviousContinue »