Page images

accepted for him, to make atonement for him: go, and do thou likewise. If the man had been without sin, he would have had no need of having recourse to a priest; he could not come to him without a sacrifice: when he brought it he laid his hand on the head of it, as much as to say, There I lay my sin. Then the priest took the offering under his care, and the man was discharged. The man stood by, and saw his sacrifice slain, its blood sprinkled, its parts put on the altar, and wholly consumed by fire, and his sin with it. Herein he saw what his sin deserved; and how he was delivered by the substi tution of the sacrifice, which bore his sin. Then the priest sprinkling the man with the blood, he went away with the peace of God in his conscience, and the love of God in his heart. thou mayest see and understand how thou art to take the benefit of Christ's atonement. :


The sacrifice of Christ hath all the worth and efficacy of eternal Godhead in it. The sins of all the elect are removed out of God's sight by it: the virtue of it is fully proclaimed in the gospel. It is therein declared that it cleanseth from all sin.

Thy believing this testimony of God concerning it, is thy discharge and acquittance from all thy sin. In believing the virtue of the blood of the Lamb, thou wilt have an inward sense of it on thy soul: and hereby thou wilt know that thou

hast redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins. Let me then ask, dost thou feel thy sin, and want of Christ? Art thou brought to know the everlasting sufficiency of the blood and sacrifice, the obedience and death of the God-man, Christ Jesus, to save thee from all thy sins and miseries, and to present thee before God as perfectly righteous and spotless, as though thou hadst never sinned? Art thou trusting on the blood of the Lamb of God, for thy everlasting discharge and acquittance from all sin; and upon the obedience of Christ to death, even the death of the cross, for thy perfect justification before the throne? If thou canst call God to witness, saying, I speak the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost, that I believe the blood of Christ to be everlastingly sufficient to cleanse me from all sin, thou art a believer, and hast everlasting life. The Lord bless what I have set before thee. Amen.




NUMBERS Vii. 10, 11.

"And the princes offered for dedicating of the altar, in the day that it was anointed; even the princes offered their offering before the altar. And the Lord said unto Moses, they shall offer their offering, each prince on his day, for the dedicating of the altar.

IN the first chapter of this book, we are informed, that on the first day of the second month, the Lord provided for the Israelites to pitch their camps, as on the first day of the first month, they had begun to erect the tabernacle. The people are numbered from twenty years old, and upwards; and their number amounted to six hundred thousand, and three thousand, and five hundred and fifty, Numb. i. 46. Of all which number, only two men entered the land of Canaan, viz. Caleb and Joshua.

The levites are not reckoned in this sum, and accordingly fall not under the same curse with the others, of not entering into the land of promise.

Not one impotent or sickly person, was found in all the congregation of Israel: so good was the Lord unto them.

The Lord gave commandment also concern. ing their encampment, in what manner they should pitch. The tabernacle was to be the centre: that being placed in the middle, the levites pitched next unto it, in a quadrangular body, round about it, at a certain distance. The whole body of Israelites pitched at another distance about them, in the same form, and two thousand cubits distance from the tabernacle. Every side of the square was distinguished by its respective ensigns. Judah's ensign was a lion, one of the figures in the cherubim: Ephraim's ensign was a bullock, this was also a figure in the cherubim a man was the ensign of Reuben: an eagle was the ensign of Dan: both cherubic emblems.

As the camps were cast into a four-square form, and had these four ensigns, all taken from the cherubim of glory; so as they lay encamped, the tabernacle was in the midst, as Christ is in the midst of his church.

The sanctuary and its court, were in a long square, twice as long as they were broad. In

what form the camp of Israel was, the scripture doth not shew, save that it was round about the tabernacle. Ainsworth says, it is likely it was a square, and so many thousand tents could not be pitched in a little room. Josephus says, that between every tribe in the four quarters, there was a space, like a mart, or fair, to buy and sell, with artificers shops, as if it had been a city. The camp of Israel is said to be twelve miles long, and twelve miles broad.

As God's sanctuary was walled about with the twelve tribes of Israel, so the new Jerusalem hath a wall with twelve gates, and names written thereon, of the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel. And the wall hath twelve foundations, and in them, the names of the twelve apostles and the Lamb, Rev. xxi. 12.

As there were three tribes on every quarter, so the new Jerusalem hath three gates on the east, three on the north, three on the south, and three on the west, Rev. xxi. 13. As these twelve tribes, had their fathers' name graven on twelve precious stones, on the breast plate of the high priest; so the foundations of the wall of the heavenly city, is of the like precious stones, Rev, xxi. 19. As between the sanctuary and the tribes of Israel, there were four companies of levites, to watch and guard the holy tabernacle; so between God's throne, and the four and twenty elders, who encompassed it, were four

« PreviousContinue »