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beasts which appeared in visions to those which are to be interpreted Daniel and John were also symbolical figuratively. of the different kingdoms which Let us first contemplate those should succeed each other in ages Scriptures which relate the then future.
Jewish nation ;-and then those But it is not necessary to make which relate to the Messiah. the nice distinctions in language It is very evident that the diswhich rhetoricians have done : (viz. persion of the tribes of Israel among personification, apostrophe, hyper- the nations is literal : and as the bole, comparison, metaphor, allegory, threatenings denounced against them &c:) it is quite sufficient for the have been literally fulfilled, it apbiblical student, that he consider pears certain that the promises of the Scriptures divided into two their restoration will also be literally classes only; namely literal and accomplished. - Thus saith the figurative. The first class includes Lord, I will turn away your capall those passages which ought to “tivity, and I will gather you from be understood according to the all nations whither I have driven primitive meaning of words; the
the 'you, saith the Lord, and I will second includes all those which bring you again into the place require a different construction, and ' whence I caused you to be carried the words of which must be in..
*away captive."i terpreted as representing something The prophecies of Jesus relative else. Example—“Thouhast brought to the present dispersion of the Jews a vine out of Egypt and planted it.”h deserve special attention. Jerusalem It is possible to bring a vine out of was besieged and taken, the temple Egypt and plant it in Judea : why utterly destroyed, and the Jews then not understand it literally ? An- scattered into all nations. These swer: There is a necessity to under things were literally fulfilled: what, stand it figuratively from the con- then, can we expect but a literal nexion and scope of the passage. The restoration ? “ Lo! the days come, same remarks will apply to Isa. v, 2: * saith the Lord, that I will bring " and planted it with the choicest ' again the captivity of my people vine." There the prophet explains Israel and Judah, saith the Lord : it by saying, “ The vineyard of the and I will cause them to return to Lord of Hosts is the house of the land that I gave to their fathers, Israel and the men of Judah his and they shall possess it.”j From . pleasant plant." Again, “ I am many passages of the sacred Scripthe vine :” every person acquainted tures it is evident, that the people with the common use of language to be restored are the dispersed of must acknowledge that this must Israel and Judah : they are God's be understood figuratively.
covenant people ; and he solemnly I think the rules of interpretation declares “I will not break my laid down in No. I, page 161, are
covenant with them for I am the sufficiently comprehensive to include “Lord their God.”k The ordinances every word in the Bible. With of the heavenly bodies are not more these rules in view I shall proceed firmly established than God's co
point out those passages which venant with the house of Israel. are to be understood literally and If those ordinances depart from
À Ps. lxxx, 8.
i Jer. xxix, 14.
j Jer. XXX, 3.
k Lev. xxvi, 44.
before me saith the Lord, then the affection are still recognised; “I seed of Israel also shall cease from have forsaken mine house; I have being a nation before me for ever. left mine heritage; I have given Thus saith the Lord; if heaven the deariy beloved of my soul into · above can be measured, and the • the hands of her enemies.”l And foundation of the earth searched the mercy in reserve for them often out beneath, then will I cast off beams forth in the promises of all the seed of Israel for all that a glorious restoration: "I will they have done, saith the Lord.” strengthen the house of Judah, But as these things cannot be done, and I will save the house of Joseph, what is the conclusion ?-Israel shall and I will bring them again to be restored, and remain before him place them; for I have mercy on for ever.
Now they are banished them; and they shall be as though from their country on account of I had not cast them off; for I am their sins; yet the former the Lord their God, and I will dearing relations and undiminished hear them.''m
INQUIRER. 1 Jer. xii, 7.
m Zech. x, 6.
ON PREACHING THE MILLENNIUM.
To the Editor of the Investigator, his right foot on the sea and his left
foot on the earth, and swears that Sir,
in the days of the voice of the It is impossible for me to express seventh angel, when he shall begin with what pleasure I have read those to sound, the mystery of God should beautiful works of Sir Isaac Newton, be finished, as he has declared to his lately reprinted; viz.“ Observations servants the prophets.”a For is not on the prophecies of Daniel,” and
this as much as to say, that about " Remarks on the Revelation of St. this time the light of prophecy should John.” What I am about to say is dawn on mankind ; and that in its in strict unison with his interpreta- light, many good men should preach tions, and therefore I must address the Gospel in its purity and simplicity myself chiefly to those who have through the world,-should declare studied and approve them.
the approach of divine judgement Some commentators I believe wherever that Gospel is despised or consider, that we are still under the corrupted, and prophesy the glorious sixth trumpet and near its close; period which is to follow of a reand I conceive that we are very near deemed and happy Earth. That it is the time when the Millennium is so I shall endeavour to prove. to be preached; viz. when
According to Sir Isaac Newton, mighty angel comes down from hea- the Lamb who has been opening in ven clothed with a cloud, in whose heaven the sealed book of prophecy, hand is a little book OPEN, who sets for the first time comes to the earth
a Rev. x, 1-7.
with that book open in his hand. the great prince which standeth for Now look for the corresponding the children of thy people."d Complace in the second part of the Re- pare with this passage Rev. x, 5: velation and see how St. John inter- And the angel which I saw stond prets this: And I saw another upon the sea and
upon the sea and upon the earth, angel fly in the midst of heaven, &c.” Recollect also that the high ' having the everlasting Gospel to priest at this period "stands on an 'preach unto them that dwell on elevated place in the people's court;' • the earth, and to every nation and and I think we must be convinced
kindred and tongue and people, that these three are the same : for ' saying with a loud voice, Fear God not one jot of prophecy shall pass and give glory to him, for the hour away. of his judgement is come; and wor- It is at the time that the Turkish ship him that made heaven and empire comes to its end, and not • earth and sea and the fountains of after it, that Michael stands up: and
waters.”b Next look at the cor- as that empire seems already totterresponding period of the Jewish ing to its fall, the period for it may feast of the seventh month, in Sir not be far off. Isaac's “ Remarks on St. John” and Our Saviour tells us, Matt. xxiv, you will read that it was the cus
that this Gospel of the kingi tom for the high priest on the dom shall be preached in all the day of expiation, to stand in an world for a witness unto all nations elevated place in the people's court, and then shall the End come. ” ' at the eastern gate of the priest’s That is, that the good tidings of his
court, and READ the law to the coming to take the kingdom should * people."
be preached in all the world; that According to Sir Isaac, we read all nations, forewarned of what was in Daniel, that “at the time of the coming, should witness the accom· end, the Turkish empire should be plishment of prophecy, and learn to troubled with tidings out of the honour and turn to him as their north and out of the east, therefore Saviour and King. I will submit he shall go forth with great fury, therefore to the christian world, '&c: yet he shall come to his whether the “ preaching of the Mil• end and none shall help him. And lennium” may not be near at hand.* at that time shall Michael stand up,
b Rev. xiv, 6, 7.
c Page 270.
d Dan. xi, xii.
* We conceive the preaching of the Millennium (that is to say, if we understand Laicus, of approaching judgements and the personal advent of Messiah) not only to be near at hand, but already begun. There may not yet be a general reception of these truths among the pious ministers of God's word; but they are rapidly extending. We have already four periodical journals especially devoted to prophecy, and in which the doctrines in question have been fully declared. We refer to the Morning Watch and Investigator in England, the Christian Herald in Ireland, and the Watchman in France. The Continental Society has likewise been instrumental in extending this preaching in various parts of the continent; some of the missionaries of the Society for converting the Jews have carried it still further. We know likewise that the subject begins to attract great attention in America. Millennarian doctrines are now declared from hundreds of pulpits in Britain : and as to approaching judgements, the impression is so widely spread, that we believe most serious christians are awfully persuaded in this respect ; and we know that this persuasion is being made instrumental in drawing the attention of such to prophecy, and to the coming of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
ON THE PROPHETICAL PARTS OF THE 23RD, 24TH, AND 25TH CHAPTERS OF
ST. MATTHEW's GOSPEL.
The important prophecies in- ever.
It does however appear, that cluded in these chapters commence this Zacharias was eminent for his at the 34th verse of the 23d chapter. hatred of wickedness; and that he Our Saviour, in the foregoing verses,
had the boldness to reprove the proves the Jew's to be the children people, for their transgressions of of them who killed the prophets ;" the law : he may, therefore, as reand declares that they would fill up gards character, whether Jew or the measure of their fathers. He then christian, be pronounced "righteous. proceeds to predict that they would If we do not take this person for persecute and put to death those the Zacharias spoken of by our Lord,
prophets, wise men, and scribes,” but refer the designation to either whom he would send unto them; so of the Zechariahs of the Old Testathat all the blood of the martyrs, ment, it would seem that the Jews from Abel to Zacharias, should be were not to be held guilty for the visited upon that “generation," or blood of the martyrs, (including the
The latter portion, however, most precious blood of all—that of of this prophecy demands especial our Lord Jesus Christ,) shed by them attention; and I would submit that subsequent to a very remote murder. this Zacharias, - the son of Ba- It may also be remarked, in passing, rachias, whom ye slew between the that the Bible no where expresses temple and the altar,” was not the that the prophet Zechariah came to prophet Zechariah, whose writings his death by violence. are extant in our Bibles, nor Zech- Our Lord then pathetically laariah, the son of Jehoiada the
ments the obstinacy of the Jewish priest,” who is mentioned (2 Chron. nation in rejecting him; and prexxiv, 20, 21) to have been slain dicts that their house, or temple, in the court of the temple; but should be left desolate ; and that Zacharias, the son of Baruch, who, they should not see Him (their as Josephus relates, was slain by Messiah) henceforth, till (instead of the Zealots, in the middle of the making him a curse* as they were temple, just before the destruction about to do) they should hail Him of that temple by the Romans. as a blessing. By the expression, It does not indeed appear from the 'ye shall not see me,” we must not historian, that this Zacharias was a understand that they would not do christian martyr ;-but we should so visually and bodily, for we know bear in mind that Josephus wrote they saw much of him in this sense his history to propitiate the favor afterwards; but that they would not of the Romans towards his country, discern him spiritually, and in faith, and to exalt it in their eyes; and
to be that Messiah who was to that he passes over, as far as it is gather them together," until his possible for an historian so to do, second coming. The disciples seem all mention of the christians what- to have had their minds so far en
* Deut, xxi, 23; Gal. iii, 13.
lightened, as to understand our 'wait patiently) unto (or for) the end Lord's meaning, and began, as it the same shall be saved.”—The were, to lament the fate of their Gospel was to be preached for a beautiful temple ; for “ they came witness to all nations; and then to him to shew him the buildings,” the end should come.” and, as St. Mark has it,
The specific branch of our Lord's thein said, Master, see what manner answer commences at the 15th verse of stones, and what buildings are of the 24th chapter. In reply to the here !” and St. Luke says, Some first question of the disciples, he 'spake of the temple, how it was gives a detail of the signs which
adorned with goodly stones and should take place prior to the de' gifts.” Jesus affirms, in reply, that struction of Jerusalem, and enable notwithstanding all its glory, there them to provide for their safety.-should not be left one stone upon Then follow predictions of the tribuanother. The disciples then ask lations which would begin with that Him (as I apprehend) three distinct event, and continue through all subquestions :
sequent ages until his second coming. When shall these things As to their second question, He be?”-i. e. the destruction of the says, “ Then (or after that) shall temple and nation ;
appear the sign of the Son of Man What shall be the sign of 'in heaven, and then shall all the thy coming?"
tribes of the earth mourn, and they And of the end of the shall see the Son of Man coming, world?
in the clouds of heaven, with Our Lord seems to answer these power, and great glory, &c.” He questions (each having a manifest beautifully illustrates the approach relation to, and dependence on, the of these events (viz. the destruction other, and yet being distinct) first of Jerusalem and the second advent) generally, then specifically ;-—and by a reference to the familiar evithere is doubtless throughout the dence of the approach of summer, whole a designed obscurity, in some by the fig-tree putting forth leaves. respects, in order that the people of Then he declares that that generaGod might, in all ages, have exercise tion,” or race of people, (although for their faith, humility, and diligent their nation might be destroyed,) inquiry.
should remain till all these things The first or general branch of his should be fulfilled; and that heaven answer is as follows.
and earth, (kingdoms and peoples,) He warns them against false should pass away, but his words Christs, and not to be troubled at should not pass away. How very news of wars and commotions; remarkably, in this view of our for such things must come to pass Saviour's meaning, have these prebefore the end. Great judgements dictions been accomplished ! were to be but “the beginning of He then tells them, that “the sorrows.'' His saints were to be day and hour" is known only to the persecuted; false prophets were to Father;—therefore they must watch, arise; iniquity was to abound, and and not suffer their vigilance to abate the love of many to cold. by thinking he delayed, (or would not " But," he interposes, (doubtless for perform his promise of,) coming; the support and encouragement of his for he would come, in a day and hour, people in those times of trial, through of which the slothful, and the evil, all ages)“ he that shall endure (or should not be aware.