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cit predictions, as the following: “ Thou hast brought " me into the dust of death ;": " He was cut off out of " the land of the living." Deaths in the plural number are ascribed to him, because his corporeal death was accompanied with the pains of spiritual and of eternal death: Yet exempt from sin and from despair, and also from the eternal duration which attend the death of the damned :—from the former, on account of the holiness of the person suffering—from the latter, on account of his dignity. We read further in Isaiah, “ Thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin ;'u “ He “ hath poured out his soul unto death."" The Prophet Daniel had a revelation not merely of the death of the Messiah, but of the time of his death, and even the very hour of the day in which he died : “ And after " threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off.”w It is to be observed that this communication was made to Daniel by Gabriel “ about the time of the evening “ oblation ;"x at which time Christ expired.y Paul, therefore, justly affirmed,“ that Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures.”;
xLv. To predictions types were added. The ancient HIGH-PRIESTS, whose death gave liberty to refugees to return to the homes which they had deserted. SAMPSON, who effected a greater destruction of his enemies at his death, than in the whole course of his heroical life. The SACRIFICES, whose death and blood " sanc“ tified the unclean to the purifying of the flesh ;"
Ps. xxii. 15. type Is. liii. 9. Verse 12. * Verse 21. * 1 Cor. xv. 3. Judg. xvi. 30.
s Is. liii. 8. u Verse 10. w Dan. ix. 26. y Mat: xxvii. 46. a Num. xxxv. 28. c Heb. ix. 13, 14.
and which were offered in the morning, at the hour at which Christ was nailed to the cross, and in the evening, at the hour at which he died. In particular, the PASSOVER.
XLVI. From all that has now been stated, it is clear, that the whole of these sufferings befel Christ according to “ the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of “ God;" and that nothing was done to him by his enemies but what “God's hand and counsel determined “ before to be done.” They thus acted the part of guilty instruments in accomplishing the holy and wise purpose of God;—who fulfilled by means of them, notwithstanding their ignorance and wickedness, “ those • things which he had shewed before by the mouth of “ all his prophets that Christ should suffer."
XLVII. Let us now see how GRIEVOUS those sufferings were which befel Christ, and how hard and dreadful to endure. SCOURGING often presented itself to the sorrowful mind of Jesus as an important part of his wo. “ They shall deliver him," said he, “ to the Gen“ tiles - - - to scourge him;"h and again, “ they shall
scourge him, and put him to death.”; Nor was it without cause that he viewed it thus ; for scourging was a punishment at once ignominious and extremely painful. It was contrary to all law, to beat Roman citizens, or freemen,j The vilest of slaves were denominated the fellows that were whipped and scourged.* Yet he who is not a citizen of the earthly Rome but of the heavenly Jerusalem, not a citizen merely but the
* Mastigiæ et Flagriones. di Cor. v. 7.
* Acts ii. 23. Acts iv. 28.
8 Acts iï. 18. h Mat. xx. 19.
i Luke xviii. 33. Acts xvi. 37. xxi. 25.
Prince, not the son of a great king but of the Most High God,-had this indignity to undergo. The Jews were required by a divine command, in beating malefactors, not to exceed forty stripes, “ lest their brother “ should seem vile to them.” But that moderation was unknown to the Romans, who were not restricted to any particular number of blows. They often fastened also sharp-pointed needles and small iron hooks to their scourges, by which the wretched sufferers were lacerated even to the ribs and bones. Yet, as Scripture is silent on the point, we dare not affirm that Christ was beaten with scourges of that description. Some idea, however, of the inhumanity with which he was treated, may be gathered from the circumstance, that Pilate, after he had been scourged, brought him forth from the Prætorium, and presented him to the view of the people, with this memorable exclamation, BEHOLD THE MAN! That is, “ Are you not touched with pity for a most miserable man, so dreadfully tortured and torn? Is all this insufficient to satisfy your ferocious cruelty and inveterate hatred ?”
XLVIII. But the most grievous matter to Christ was, that whilst his innocent back and breast were mangled with lashes, he experienced also in his soul the dreadful strokes of the rod of God, due to our sins, which he had taken upon himself. The stings of a tremendous curse were thus added to the stripes; for “ he was “ wounded for our transgressions; he was bruised for “ our iniquities; and the Lord hath laid on him the “ iniquity of us all.”!
XLIX. How bitter to Christ, too, was his EXPULSION
1 Is. lii. 5, 6.
k Deut. xxv. 3. VOL. II.
from the city to the place of punishment, bearing his cross ; which was predicted by Moses and Elias on the holy mount,m lò and prefigured by those animals, whose blood was brought by the Highpriest into the sanetuary as a sin-offering, and whose bodies were burnt without the camp. By this unjust expulsion he was not only declared unworthy to enjoy any longer the intercourse of reputable citizens; but there was here a deeper mystery, still more distressing to his mind. Jerusalem is called “ the holy city,” “ the city of the great “ King,”p “ the city of God,” “ where Jehovah hath “ his fire and his furnace;" and on that account it was a type of heaven. Christ, therefore, when he was ignominiously ejected, as offscourings, from the earthly Jerusalem, saw in this figure, that he was to be deprived for a time of delightful fellowship with angels and with his heavenly Father, and as an exile from heaven, to be consigned, in a manner, to hell.
L. But the pain and the shame were mightily increased by the ignominious BEARING OF THE CROSS. His body, feeble, exhausted by so many watchings and so many injuries, and recently wounded by so many stripes, proved unequal to so great a weight; and soon appearing ready to faint by the way, he required the assistance of Simon the Cyrenian. A sad spectacle, indeed, which, not without reason, drew floods of tears from the eyes of the daughters of Jerusalem. For the Lord of glory to carry, like a slave, the disgraceful cross!
m Luke is. 31. n Lev. iv. 12. Num. xix. 3. Heb. xiü. 11, 12. • Mat. iv. 5.
P Ps. xlviii. 2. 9 Ps. lxxxvi. 3.
r Is. xxxi. 9. * Heb. xii. 22.
15 See Note XV.
to be driven, beaten, and pushed forward, till he was obliged to stumble and stagger, if not to fall, under the pressure of the tree! For him who relieves all that are afflicted, now to stand in need of a helper !
LI. Had there been nothing more to press him down than what was external and visible, the burden would have been comparatively light. But to that was added the guilt of all our crimes, which were laid upon him, that he might bear them together with the tree; for " he hath borne our griefs and carried our sorrows,” and“ he bare our sins in his own body on the tree.” David complains of the grievousness of this burden, saying, “ Mine iniquities are gone over mine head, as “ an heavy burden they are too heavy for me.” Yet David never felt the burden in all its weight.
LII. It was also inexpressibly bitter to Christ to be STRIPPED OF HIS GARMENTS, both on account of the pain and the shame. The clothes being driven into the flesh by the stripes and wounds which he had received, could not be pulled off, at least in those parts of his body which had just been pressed by the cross, without the most exquisite sensations of pain. It was a great affront, too, for a venerable person, a distinguished Teacher, a holy Prophet, to be stripped naked in the presence of all, so that on this account he might say; "Shame hath covered my face.”w When the king of the Ammonites cut off the garments of David's -servants in the middle even to their buttocks, and dismissed them in that condition, not only were they greatly ashamed; but King David himself avenged, by a destructive war, so heinous an insult offered to his
! Is. liii. 4.
Ps. xxxviü. 4.
u 1 Pet. ii. 24.
Ps. lxix. 7.