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CH A P. - IV.

The fewish Peculiarity not prejudicial to the Rest of Mankind. God was

still the God and Father of all; and the Israelites were obliged to exercise all Benevolence to Men of other Nations : Yes, the Constitution was, in Fact, erected for the Good of all the World.

73. DUT though the Father of Mankind was pleased, in his wisdom,

D to erect the foregoing scheme, for promoting virtue, and preserving true religion in one nation of the world, upon whom he conferred particular blessings and privileges, this was no injury nor prejudice to the rest of mankind. For, as to original favours, or external advantages, God, who may do what he pleases with his own, beltows them in any kind or degree, as he thinks fit. Thus he makes a variety of creatures; fome angels in a higher sphere of being, some men in a lower. And among men, he distributes different faculties, stations and opportunities in life. To one he gives ten talents, to another five, to another two, to another one, severally as he pleases; without any impeachment of his justice, and to the glorious display and illustration of his wisdom. And fo he may bestow different advantages, and favours upon different nations, with as much justice and wisdom, as he has placed them in different climates, or vouchsafed them various accommodations and conveniencies of life. But, whatever advantages fome nations may enjoy above others, ftill God is the God and Father of all; and his extraordinary bleflings to some are not intended to diminish his regards to others. He erected a scheme of polity and religion for promoting the knowledge of God, and the practice of virtue in one nation; but not with a design to withdraw his goodness or providential regards from the rest. God has made a variety of soils, and situations; yet he cares for every part of the globe' ; and the inhabitants of the North Cape, where they confliet a good part of the year with night and extreme cold, are no more neglected by the univerfal Lord, than those who enjoy the perpetual summer and pleasures of the Canary Isles. At the same time God chose the children of Israel to be his peculiar people, in : fpecial covenant, he was the God of the rest of mankind, and regarded them as the objects of his care and benevolence. Exod. xix. 5, " Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all People : 7987737" although all the earth is mine." So it should be rendered. Deut. X. 14, 15, “ Behold the heaven, and the heaven of heavens is the Lord's.my God, the earth with all that therein are. Only the Lord had a delight in thy fathers to love them, and he chose their feed after them, even, you above all people, as it is this day.” Ver. 17, 18, “ For the Los your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords, a great God, a mig and a terrible, which regardeth not perfonis, [or, “is no relpecte profuns,” (Acts x. 34.) through partiality to one person, or one na

more

more than another] nor taketh reward. He doth execute the judgment of the fatherless and widow, and loveth the franger, in giving him food and raiment.” (A stranger was one, who was of any other nation beside the Jewish. [37] Pfal. cxlvi. 9, “ The Lord preserveth the strangers." viii. 1. xix. 1, 2, 3, 4. xxiv. 1. xxxiii. 5, “ The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.” Ver. 8, “ Let all the earth fear the Lord; let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him." Ver. 12, “Bleffed is the nation whose God is the Lord, [29] and the people whom he has chosen for his own inheritance." [53] Ver. 13, The Lord looketh from Heaven: he beholdeth all the sons of men. From the place of his habitation he looketh upon all the inhabitants of the earth. He fashioneth their hearts alike: he considereth all their works.” xlvii. 2, 8, “ The Lord most high is a great King over all the earth. God reigneth over the heathen :" Ixvi. 7. cvii. 8, 15, 21. cxlv. 9, “ The Lord is good to all, and his tender mercies are over all his works."Many more passages might be brought out of the Scriptures of the Old Testament to shew, that all the nations of the earth were the objects of the divine care and goodness, at the same time, that he vouchsafed a particular and extraordinary providence towards the Jewish nation. ;

74. And agreeably to this, the Israelites were required to exercise all benevolence and good will to the Gentiles, or strangers, to abstain from all injurious treatment, to permit them to dwell peaceably and comfortably among them, to partake of their blessings, to incorporate into the same happy body, if they thought fit, and to join in their religious solemnities. Exod. xxii. 21, “ Thou shalt neither vex a stranger, nor oppress him.” xxiii. 9, 12. Lev. xix. 10, “ Thou shalt not glean thy vineyard, neither shalt thou gather every grape of thy vineyard; thou shalt leave them for the poor and stranger; I am the Lord your God.” xxiii. 22. xix. 33, 34, “ And if a stranger sojourn with thee in your land, ye Thall not vex him. But the stranger, that dwelleth with you, shall be unto you as one born amongst you, and thou shalt love him as thyself.”.xxv. 35,“ And if thy brother be waxen poor, and fallen in decay with thee; then thou shalt relieve him : yea though he be a stranger, or a sojourner; that he may live with thee.” Num. xv. 14, 15, “ And if a stranger sojourn with you, or whosoever be among you in your generations, and will offer an offering made by fire of a sweet savour unto the Lord : as ye do, so he shall do. One ordinance shall be both for you, of the congregation, [52] and also for the stranger that sojourneth with you, an ordinance for ever in your generations: as ye åre, so shall the stranger be before the Lord.” Deut. xxvi. 11, 12, “ And thou shalt rejoice in every good thing, which the Lord thy God has given unto thee, and unto thy house, thou and the Levite, and the stranger that is among you,” Ezek. xxii. 7, 29.

75. And not only were they required to treat strangers, or men of other nations, with kindness and humanity; but it appears, from several parts of Scripture, that the whole Jewish dispensation had respect to the nations of the world: not indeed to bring them all into the Jewish church, (that would have been impracticable, as to the greatest part of the world) but to spread the knowledge and obedience of God in the earth. Or, it was a scheme which was intended to have its good effects beyond the pale of

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the Jewish inclosure, and was established for the benefit of all mankind. Gen. xii. 3, “ And in thee [Abrahan] shall all families of the earth be blessed.” xxii. 18, “And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed.” Exod. vii. 5, “ And the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I stretch forth my hand upon Egypt, and bring out the children of Israel.”-ix. 16,“And indeed for this very cause have I raised thee,” Pharach, “up, for to thew in thee my power; and that my name may be de. clared throughout all the earth.” xv. 14. Lev. xxvi. 45. Num. xiv. 13, 14, 15, “And Moses said unto the Lord, then the Egyptians shall hear it, (for thou broughtest up this people in thy might from among them) and they will tell it to the inhabitants of this land: for they have heard that thou Lord art among this people, that thou Lord art seen face to face, and that thy cloud standeth over them, and that thou goeft before them, by day-time in a pillar of a cloud, and in a pillar of fire by night. Now if thou shalt kill all this people as one man, then the nations, which have heard the fame of thee will speak, saying,” &c. Deut. iv. 6, “Keep (thele statutes and judgments] therefore and do them, for this is your wisdom, and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which thall hear al those statues, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.” Sam. xvii. 46, “I will give the carcases of the Philistines to the fowls of the air,—that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel.” 1 Kings viii. 41, 42, 43, “ Moreover concerning a stranger, that is not of thy people Ifrael, but comes out of a far country for thy náme's fake; (for they shall hear of thy great name, and of thy strong hand, and of thy stretched out arm) when he shall come, and pray towards this house: hear thou in heaven thy dwelling place, and do according to all that the stranger calleth to thee for: that all people of the earth may know thy name, to fear thee, as do thy people lirael," &c. Pfal. Ixvii. 1, 2, 3, &c. xcviii. 1, 2, 3, Jer. xxxii. 9, “And it thall be to me a name of joy, a praise, and an honour before all the nations of the earth, which shall hear all the good that I do unto them: and they Thall fear and tremble for all the goodness, and for all the prosperity that I procure for it.” Hof. ï. 23, “ I will fow her unto me in the earth.” Zeph. iii. 20,-" I will make you a name and praise among all the people of the earth, when I turn back your captivity,” &c.

CH A P. v.

T!: Jeuisli Priulivurity was to receive its Pörfezion fron the Gospel Di penjution, under the Son of God. The Gofpil is the Jewish Slank

inlarged and improved. 26. D UT though the Jewish Peculiarity did not exclude the

D rest of the world from the care and beneficence of the Universal Father; and though the Jews were commanded to eterCite benerolence towards persons of other nations ; yet, about the

time

Fards persons of so were commanded of the Unie

time when the gospel was promulged, the Jews were greatly elevated on account of their distinguishing privileges, and looked upon themfelves as the only favcurites of Heaven, and regarded the rest of mankind with a sovereign contempt, as nothing, as, abandoned of God, and without a pollibility of salvation, unless they should incorporate, in fome degree or other, with their nation. Their constitution, they supposed, was establithed for ever, never to be altered, or in any respect abolished. They were the true and only church, out of which no man could be accepted of God: and consequently, unless a man submitted to the law of Moses, how virtuous or good loever he were, it was their belief, he could not be saved. He had no right to a place in the church, nor could hereafter obtain life.

77. But the Jewish dispensation, as peculiar to that people, though superior to the mere light of nature, which it fupposed and included, was but of a temporary duration, and of an inferior and imperfect kind, in comparison of that which was to follow; and which God from the beginning, (when he entered into covenant with Abraham, and made the promise to him) intended to erect; and which he made several declarations under the Old Testament, that he would erect, in the proper time, as successive to the Jewish dispensation, and, as a superstructure, perfective of it. And as the Jewish dispensa-, tion was erected by the ministry of Moses, this was to be built by the ministry of a much nobler hand; even that of the Son of God, the Melliah, fore-ordained before the world was made, promised to Abraham, foretold by the prophets, and even expected by the Jews themfelves, though under no just conceptions of the end of his coming into the world. He was to assume, and live in a human body, to declare the truth and grace of God more clearly and expressly to the Jews, to exhibit a pattern of the most perfect obedience, to be obedient even unto death in compliance with the will of God, and in firm adherence to the truth he taught. And, in consequence of this, he was also to be a pattern of reward, by being raised from the dead, exalted to the right hand of God, invested with universal power, and by having a commission given him to raise all mankind from the dead, and to put all, in all ages and places of the world, into the poflellion of eternal life, who shall at the last day be found virtuous and holy. When Christ came into the world, the Jews were ripe for deItruction; but he published a general indemnity for the transgressions of the former covenant, upon their repentance; and openly revealed , a future ftate, as the true Land of Promise, even eternal life in heaven. Thus he confirmed the former covenant with the Jews, as to the favour and blessing of God, and enlarged, or more clearly explained it, as to the blesings therein bestowed; instead of an earthly Canaan, Tevealing the resurrection from the dead, and everlasting happiness and glory in the world to come. 2.78. His personal ministry indeed was confined to the Jewish nation, vat. xv. 24, “ I am not sent but to the loft sheep of the house of Israel.” Rom. xv. 8, “ Now, I say, that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumCilion, for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fahers.” But not only did he improve upon the foregoing dispensation, more

clearly

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to all in God; an?t; and one pardon

clearly explaining the Abrahamic covenant; but further, whereas for many ages, we Gentiles, considered in a body, were in a state of revolt from God, aliens and enemies, [37] serving dumb idols; while the Jews were his peculiar people, church and heritage, he threw the kingdom of God into a new form, by taking down the partition wall, the wall of the Jewish inclosure, and admitting into his church and kingdom, as his people and subjects, all in every nation, who should acknowledge the truth of his mislion and doctrine, and profess subjection to him, as their king and governour. In pursuance of this now scheme, his apostles, but especially St. Paul, published 2 general indemnity, and free pardon to the Gentile world, which then was very corrupt, and obnoxious to the wrath and just condemna. tion of God; and declared, that all, who believed in him, were intitled to all the privileges, blessings and promises of his church and king. dom, according to the most extensive sense of the Abrahamic covenant; and at the same time exempted from the incumbrance of the ceremonial law. Thus the Jewish peculiarity was happily overthrown; not, properly speaking, by being totally annulled, but by being enlarged to the extent of the whole globe, and by admitting all mankind, who accepted the gospel, not only to the same spiritual advantages, but even to much greater; even into their covenant explained and enlarged.

79. That the gospel is the Jewish scheme, enlarged and improved, will evidently appear, if we consider; that we Gentiles believing in Chrift are said to be incorporated into the same body with the Jews, and that believing Jews and Gentiles are now become one, one flock, one body in Christ. John X. 16, “ And other sheep I have which are not of this (the Jewish] fold : them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one flock (*), [41] and one Shepherd.” 1 Cor. xii. 13, “ By one fpirit we are all baptized in one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles.” Gal. iii. 28, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female : for ye are all one in Christ Jesus ;” that is, under the gospel dispensation. Ephef. ii. 14, 15, 16, “ For he is our peace, who has made both [Jews and Gentiles] one, and has broken down the middle wall of partition between us, [ Jews and Gentiles.) Having abolished by his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments, contained in ordinances, for to make in himself, of twain, one new man, so making peace; and that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having flain the enmity thereby.” * 80. And that this union or coalition, between believing Jews and

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now mar, contained ifhed by his the of partit

that church and covenant, in which the Jews were before the golpel dispensation was erected, and out of which the unbelieving Jew's were cast, is evident from the following considerations. 81. First. That Abraham, the head, or root of the Jewish na

tion,

(*) So the word Torpion signifies; and so our translators have rendered it in all the other places, where it is used in the New Testament. See Mat. xx", 31. Luke ii. 8, i Cor, ix. 7. And here also it should have been tranftared Hock, not fold,

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