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of the total destruction of the Jewish nation for rejecting the Messiah. Yes, their ruin shall be as completely effected as the corn is crushed and reduced to powder by grinding; and thus comparatively contemptible and feeble is the opposition of all the adversaries of Jesus,-their resistance is just such as grains of seed render to a ponderous and impenetrable stone!

To a truth so affectingly awful, is your attention now summoned; the fearful and entire destruction of such as finally reject Jesus Christ-the only provided remedy of a guilty world-they shall be ground to powder.

The offence which filled up the measure of Jewish guilt, was rejecting the Messiah; he came unto his own people but they received him not; with their wicked hands they crucified and slew him.

Disappointed that our Lord assumed no outward pomp, and appeared, as was prophesied, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief, they justified their refusal to submit to his authority, and persevered impenitently in their opposition.

"The Jews esteem'd him here,

"Too mean for their belief;

"Sorrows his chief acquaintance were,
"And his companions grief.

"They turned their eyes away,

“And treated him with scorn;

"But 'twas their grief upon him lay,

"Their sorrows he has borne."

Are the Jews alone faulty in this matter? Are they alone obnoxious to the dreadful vengeance threatened in the text. Enquiry on this subject may arouse our conscience; like the faithful friend of David, she may point at some one of us and say, "Thou art the man."-Then

I. Let us ask who now reject the Savior?

1. We may enumerate such as persecute himself and his people:-these, in crime, are most assimilated to those, to whom our Lord primarily addressed our text.

Many there are who presume to take counsel against Messiah, the Lord's anointed, who deny his true and essential Godhead, who rob him of religi ous honors, who despoil him of divine prerogatives, and attempting to destroy his authority, imagine they shall accomplish this vain thing. But “He that "sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall "have them in derision. Then shall he speak unto "them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure. Yet have I set my king upon my holy "hill of Zion. I will declare the decree: the Lord


hath said unto me, Thou art my son; this day "have I begotten thee. Ask of me, and I shall


give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and "the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession. "Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou "shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel. "Serve the Lord with fear, and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye


perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled "but a little. Blessed are all they that put their "trust in him.”*

These very persons are generally the most malignant persecutors of the members of Christ's body; nor is scriptural evidence wanting, that the Judge of all will consider these evil intentions, or persecuting attempts, as aimed at himself. In this spirit was Saul of Tarsus proceeding to Damascus. “And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus ; "and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven: And he fell to the earth, and "heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou ME? And he said, Who art "thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus "whom thou persecutest. It is hard for thee to "kick against the pricks."†


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The head suffers when any member is injured. During one of the most cruel persecutions which ever raged in the church of Christ, the conduct of these men was that of unenlightened Saul. "I verily thought with myself, that I ought to do




many things contrary to the name of Jesus of "Nazareth. Which thing I also did in Jerusalem : "and many of the saints did I shut up in prison, having received authority from the chief priests; and when they were put to death, I gave my "voice against them. And I punished them oft in every synagogue, and compelled them to blaspheme; and, being exceedingly mad against




them, I persecuted them even unto strange "cities."* Arian cruelties ought never to be forgotten; and whether these persons were sincere or not, for we judge no man; the penitent apostle most certainly did not refer to the convictions of his own mind, as an apology for his guilt. This was reserved as the refinement of heresy in modern days.

2dly. In the catalogue of those who reject the Lord Jesus, must be mentioned the self-righteousthe Pharisee.

Moral worth is indeed estimable; the world is so

* Acts, xxxi. 9-11,

poor in mere social excellence, that pitiable and dangerous as is the delusion of the Pharisee, we speak of such with respect and affection. For such our fervent prayers are continually presented. "Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God "for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I "bear them record, that they have a zeal of God, "but not according to knowledge. For they being

ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about "to establish their own righteousness, have not "submitted themselves unto the righteousness of "God."* Uninstructed in the spirituality of God's law, unhumbled by a sense of original impurity and personal guilt, and erroneously estimating their own worthiness, they come boldly to the throne of justice and claim the reward of their deeds. But dire will be their disappointment, unless they learn to imitate the conduct and adopt the language of Saint Paul. 66 Though I might also have con"fidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh “that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, "I more: concerning zeal, persecuting the church;


touching the righteousness which is in the law, "blameless. But what things were gain to me, "those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, "and I count all things but loss for the excellency "of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for

* Romans, x. 1-3.


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