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In the close of this act, when the fall of Judaism is accomplished, at the sounding of the trumpet of the seventh angel, we have examples of iwo chorusses, thus: “And there were great voices in heaven saying :
• The kingdoms of this world are become
“And the four and twenty elders which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God, saying,
“ We give thee thanks, O LORD God Almighty,
In the second act-fall of Paganism--there are many examples. We quote two: first, chapter xv, where the apostle
as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire ; and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass having the harps of God. And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying:
Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty!
For thou only art holy :
Again, chapter xix, an angel comes forth, and with minute and terrific detail, gives a recitative description of the destruction of Babylon, the symbol of the seat of the Pagan persecnting power ; and then another angel comes and confirms the account by a further recitative, and by casting a mill stone into the sea. And there is heard a chorus of much people in heaven, saying:
“ Alleluia ! Salvation, and glory, and honor, and power, unto the LORD.
For true and righteous are his judgments;
For he hath judged the great whore,
"And again they said :
“ And her smoke
for ever and ever. And the four and iwenly elders and the four beasts fell down and worshipped God that sat upon the throne, saying:
" And a voice came out of the throne, saying :
And the apostle heard, obedient to this call, “as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying:
Alleluia ! for the LORD God omnipotent reigneth.
After this, in the third act, is recited the overthrow of Satan and the prosperity of the church on earth, and the transactions of the judgment day; and the act closes with a minute recitative description of the New Jerusalem, and the final establishinent therein of all the redeemed—the church triumphant.
We see then that the Apocalypse is a series of recitations, duetts (dialogues) and chorusses, with the accompaniment of instruments—" harpers harping with their harps." In it are all the essentials—it is the irue type ofthe Oratorio.
And now is it a merely fanciful idea that Oratorios will be performed in heaven ?-ihat there will be music there-music of the voice, and music upon strings? Some doubtless will say, it is merely fanciful, and ihal the language, imagery and arrangement, are only in accommodation to us while here in the body. In reply to this suggestion, we say, it is admitted
that, if there be nothing material and sensible beyond this world, still, God, in making a revelation showing things that must be hereafter, would use language such as we could understand, and employ figures and images drawn from this world 10 describe the things of the world 10 come: and therefore we cannot prove from the language and the images merely that there will be music in the heavenly world. But on the other hand, if there be something material and sensible beyond the present, would not God much more employ such language and such images ? Now we do know that there is something material and sensible beyond the present, There is at least a spiritual body-a body adapted to the future state ;-we do know that Christ ascended to heaven with a body, that that body was at once the pledge that the bodies of all the saints shall rise, and the type of those spirita ual bodies. “Who shall change our vile body that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able to subdue all things unto himself.” But why the Captain of our salvation, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Lamb that was slain, our Saviour, furnished with a body ? and why his saints furnished with a body like thereunto? Why, except that the soul be aided by the senses thereof in the perceptions of God's glories, and in the emotions by which it shall the better love and praise Him ThaT SITTETH ON TIE THRONE AND THE Lamb forever? To bckold his glories, and to sound forth and hear bis praise ! Surely these faculties will aid the employments, and heighten the enjoyments of the heavenly world.
It is not fanciful then to suppose the imagery and dress of the Apocalypse intended to convey to us an idea, faint though it be, of actual music in the fulure world. Our greatest lendency lo err doubtless is, in our inabiliiy to conceive of the power of the celestial senses, the celestial ear, the celestial inedium of sound, the celestial voice, and the celestial instruments. The paucity and poverty of the earthly materials with their perversion and abuse is so constantly before our minds, that it almost inevitably forces us to think it derogatory and mean to transfer the conception of any thing analogous to the heavenly world.
There was exhibited in the country, some twenty years since, a company of automaton figures, ibal were made to play a few airs upon horns, the clarionell, flute, and one artificial
windpipe to imitate the voice : and it was called “The SALOON OF A rollo.” The mechanism was ingenious, but the musical effect mean. One could not help thinking, that if the god of the silver bow had happened along there, how quickly he would have shot their heads off as insolent lampooners of his art.
Again, Beethoven for years of the last period of his life, and when perfectly deaf, played on a piano without strings. Here his wildest—his sublimest strains were composed. Where was the music? not in his shattered ear-nor shallered instrument, but in his soul ;—that without an instrument and without an ear, revelled, with almost insane pleasure, in the bare conceptions, aided only by the reminiscences of former sounds,
Such facts show us that the very poverty of the earthly materials, and the very disparagement we heap on them, when we think of the heavenly, betrays the aspiration of the mind. The mind, in respect to the objects of the eye and the ear, is reaching after something which the frailly and weakness of this mortal state denies. But it expects-it desires-it looks forward to—a state, where it shall drink in its fill of the emotions which it covets, with aidances adequate to its enlarged desires.
Therefore, my belief is, that there is another, a glorious theatre, in reserve for us, even a heavenly; where, with an ear that will never grow dull, a medium that will present no hindrance, a voice that will never break, a body that will bear all pressure of emotion, subjects of infinite variety, extent and grandeur, drawn from God's creative and redemptive acts; a scene, where we may praise him with all ihe powers of heart and longne, where we may go on praising him with more and more of skill and enthusiasm and joy.
Therefore, our believe that the scenes of the Apocalypse are not arranged as they are, merely in accommodation to our earthly condition, bui are intended to shadow forih 10 us some points of real analogy between the music we essay to perform here, and the music of the heavenly world, that we may in the future world in fact hear the very chorusses, and bear some humble part in them, which John, rapt in the trance of Patmos, heard. The chorus of unnumbered millions, the millions of redeemed sinners will be sung and heard ; and it will be responded to by the chorus of unnumbered millions of angels, and they both will be like “the voice of many waters
and of mighty thunderings ;” no want, as in Handel's puny orchestra of a thousand performers, of bass deep-toned enough to balance other parts. There, genius, which in this world so quickly finds its limit through want of appropriate facililies, may soar at will; and with faculties unlike those in this world which grow weary and give out, will never need refreshment or repair. There, one shall not grow deaf with Beethoven, nor another die at thirty-six with Mozart, through sheer exhaustion of the body, nor a third expire with Haydn at the sound of cannon bombarding Vienna; but above weariness, confusion and wreck shall sing on and sing on, in sweeter and yet sweeter, in louder and yet louder strains.
There, no tongue shall silent be,
And here, there is a solemn thought. Can there be music hereafter in the soul that does not love God? Nay! music and hostility to God are incongruous ideas. The Oratorios of heaven will give no pleasure to those in whose hearts the love of God does not exist. If we enter the future state unreconciled to him, then farewell peace, farewell joy; farewell hosannas, hallelujahs, praises; farewell the company of the redeemed, the glorious church of the first-born, whose names are written in heaven, and farewell the chorus of angelic beings; farewell all that can purify and ennoble the soul. That we had enjoyed something of music here, and felt longings of soul for something far beyond what the present state permitted to attain, but which we did hope to reach in that better and more glorious world ; this will but aggravate our bitter disappointment. Nay, the capacities of music, the remembrance of earthly enterprise and enjoyment in the harmony of sweet sounds, will be turned into thorns and daggers of remorse. O, the
O, the powers of the immortal mind! its capacities of joy ! ils capacities of woe !-solemn thought! The heart says, would there were no woe! But reason-conscienceGod-says there is. One of the grand chorusses of the Apocalypse is, the pæans of rejoicing for the victory of the Lamb over the enemies of his church. Some of these enemies are the apostate of this world. “And the smoke of their torment ascendeth forever and ever." SECOND SERIES, VOL. VIII. NO. Il.