Page images

confusion, instead of the fea of glass for the purity and splendor of the refined materiality, commixed with light, and in that state, lucidum speculum, the luminous mirror of the wonders and glories of God, seen in that river of fire before his throne. Dan. vii. 9.-12. Rev. iv. 6.-15, 2. All fallen beings and their vessels must pass through fire and blood of the lamb, to be brought to humility, meekness, resigned will, peace and love again. 2dly. This living animal is sometimes called cherub, and sometimes cherubim, because it imports one perfect man in the likeness of God, from the foot of the bull, divided in two, yet not separated, to the man on the throne of fapphire. Ezek i. 26. 3dly. They are called living animals, because they are those physical glories which fell with the first cherüb, and his angels, when their thrones were çast down. Dan. vii. 9. Ezek. xxviii. 13. 19. Rev. xii. 7.-9. These are now the strong bulls and the bullocks with the bulls of Ifa. xxxiv. 5.-8. for the Naughter and facrifice of the Lord in Bozrah. Where the prophet looked to the feast of talernacles, in which seventy bullocks were killed, and the blood of fourteen lambs, the double fevens or sabbaths of God in the spirit, was in every day but one, sprinkled upon them, till they were at last devoured into the fire of the lamb's throne of judgment, in the power of his holy wrath as at Pentecojle, the day of the Lord's vengeance, and recompenses for the contro. verfy of Zion. Ifa. xxxiv. 8. Numb. xxix. 13.-36. These, in the superlative sense of this passage, are the living animals, for which the most high God, in his mercies from ancient time, operating for redemption, has prepared a place in his inheritance, where they once existed in the glory of their creators. .. .

“ Of thy goodness thou, O God, haft prepared * for the poor."

The word gnani, in the first fensé, denotes the afficted one, the Messiah, the man of forrows and acs quainted with grief. Ifa.liii. 3. For no sorrow was to be like unto his sorrow, as no reward was to be equal unto hịs, to whom God gave power over all flesh, and the whole world to be raised up to happiness and glory; the noblest reward for the most exalted love, tried by sufferings unto death, even the death of the cross. Lament. i. 12. Phil. ii. 8. Heb. ii. 915. * 2dly, it denotes all the feed of this true Aaron, of humble and contrite fpirit, meek and lowly in heart like their head and prince; for the afflifted people the Lord will save, and his eyes are upon

. * No one has penetrated so much into the deep sense of the che. çubim, as Hutchinson has done: and had he been free from all prejudice, he would probably have given a more true judgment of this wonderful hieroglyphic, fo magnificently exalted by cabbalifts, and their opponents, the Talmudists and Rabbanists, than any modern writer.


the haughty and men of violence to bring them down, 2 Sam. xxii. 28. The magnanimity of the chrif. tian faith is peculiar, in bearing evil and returning good, it is as different from the world, and what that loves and commends, as God is different from man in his ways and judgments. Our Lord begins his beatitudes in most absolute contradiction to the beast, the devil in the first eminent sense, and all men under his dominion, in pride, envy, malice and covetousness. Blessed are the poor in fpirit, for theirs is the kingdom of the heavens. Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted: Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. These are blessings, in the most important sense, future and reserved for the day of the Lord. That which is highly efteemed among men, is abomination in the night of God. Luke xvi. 15. 1 Sam. vii. 10. Faith and obedience can have no proper trial for an exalted reward, but under fome darkness and obfcurity, as well as by things painful to flesh and blood; without which, all perfons and states would be on the level. Jacob could not travel and labour to acquire bleffings for Efau, and Edom; nor Foseph be aflicted by his çyil brethren, to rise superior in power and dominion, and in dignity of love and beneficence to finners against him. This is God's delight and pleasure to exalt such patient and meek sufferess, and to bring the proud, the violent, the revenge


ful and malicious to the feet of these precious pnes, to receive on humiliation, shame and selfz abhorrence, pardon, and then blessings from their hands. None can be thus humble, till they see the fall of man, the root of evil, and the man of five in themselves; the law testifying against flesh, as the apostle speaks, and slaying us by its judgment, and shewing us void of all ground of açceptance with God, but in the righteoufness of Chriff, re-implanted, and ingrafted on our wild olive. Rom. vii. 11. The true knowledge of the law is as a record against flesh and blood, the fin and the effects and wages of Adam's firkt offence. Here pride and self dignity revolt at once; and though* envy, jealouly, hatred and malevolence reign more powerfully among the learned and philosophers, the leaders of public opinion; yet modern writers will give a different picture of human nature, while the whole earth is a living testimony to the force and extent of original depravity and corruption; and in christian kingdoms, with all the advantages of hope and fear in the utmost stretch,

[ocr errors]

* Let the Marquis d'Argens in a long note p. 186--192. on Ocellus Lucanus furnish a view of philosophers, who cannot keep the out

le fair : how much less the heart and spirit? and for the character of the noble and rich families, the most indebted to haven, in this kingdom, let Jenyns and Oswald be consulted : or rather, let your own eyes and cars judge for themselves.


and of purer light and knowledge, our own nation seems to be one mass of degeneracy and profligacy, excepting a little falt remaining; a small number scattered as in the days of Elijah, scarce seen by any eye, but his which pierces and peryades the universe. It is much safer to err on the right side, by having a mean opinion of our moral powers, than err, by entertaining such a high conceit of our strength, of our ability by nature, contrary to sacred record, to the sentiments and self-feeling of all wife men in every age, and to our internal knowledge and consciousness of the two feeds of good and evil in ourselves. The stronger we are in our fight, the less reason have we for merciful consideration in our transgressions and errors: the weaker our nature is felt to be, the more we are assured of the divine allistance and compassion: he knoweth, whereof we are made: he remembereth we are but duft. Pfal. ciii. 14. Let man remember too, that the grace of God is manifested in our weakness, not in our strength; as a good parent watches more a feeble and Gckly child, than one that is strong and healthy.

Verse 11. The Lord ADONAJ will give the word: great will be the company of the preachers.

The Lord will give the speech of those who publish glad tidings to the great army. Thus Ainsworth translates this verse. The Bishop of London interprets it thus.


« PreviousContinue »