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THE History of Persons and Nations, the De- , : scription of Places and Things, the Customs
of particular Countries and Ages, together with the Rites and Ceremonies of Worship, may be represented to the Reader with much greater Exactness and Perspicuity, by Assistance borrowed from Maps and Figures, which set them plainly before the Eye. But there were two things which hindered me from making so great Use of these Affistances as I could have desired. In
The first is this: It would have increased the Expence, and rendered the Book perhaps too chargeable to common private Families, and their Children, whose Instruction in the Knowledge of Things relating to the Church of God in all Ages, I have chiefly designed.
The other thing that discouraged me, was the great Difficulty to adjust the exact Form of several Places and Things mentioned in this Book; particularly that of the City Jerusalem, and the various remarkable Parts of it ; and the Temple built by Solomon, and rebuilt, first by Zerubbabel, and afterward by Herod; together with the several Courts and Edifices that belonged to it. There is so very wide a Difference among the several Opinions of learned Men, who have laboured in describing the Temple, such as Villalpandus, Arias, Montanus, Witfius, Lightfoot, Father L'Army, &c.
that it is hard to determine with any Certainty which was the true Form, and I was not willing to lead my Readers into a Miftake.
However, that this Book might not be utterly destitute of some of these Advantages, I have endeavoured to represent the Tabernacle raised by Mofes in the Wilderness, in the midst of the Camp of Ifrael, together with the Altars and Vessels that relate to it, the several Coverin?s of it, the Court round about it, and the Garments of the High-Priest, that my Readers might obtain some clearer Ideas of these things ; because some of these things are so often mentioned in the Old Testament, and to these the Apostle Paul, in his Epistle to the Hebrews, has so frequent Reference while he explains the Gospel of Chrift: And I hope these will in some measure attain the End which I proposed to myself.
In the first Plate.
In the Court of the Tabernacle the Reader may observe the Pillars of Wood standing on Sockers of Brass, with the Hangings of fine Linnen five Cubits deep, which is supposed to be. Gause or Network, that the whole Nation might see what was done there: These Hangings went all round, and inclosed the Court, which was a long Square, a hundred Cubits in length from East to West, and fifty Cubits in breadth from North to South, Exod. Xxxviii. 9. and xxvii. 18. - . i : )
· He may observe allo the Pins of Brass fixed in the Ground, to which the Top of every Pillar was fastened by a Cord, to keep the Pillars firm and Iteady against the Wind, Num. iii. 37. and iv. 34.
The upper part of the Laver is supposed to have several Pipes or Holes for letting Water, out in a
small Stream into the large hollow Bottom or Foot of it, whereby the Priests might wash themselves with great Conveniency.
The Altar of Burnt-Offering hath its Ascent made floping, and not with Steps, which were forbidden, Èxod. xx. 26.
The several Tribes, which form the Camp of If. rael, are pitched round about the Court of the Tabernacle, according to the best Account of learned Men, which they derive from Numb. i. 52, 53. and Numb. ii. Gershom, Kobath, and Merari, which are the three Families of the Tribe of Levi; are nearest the Court: Mofes and Aaron just before the Gate of the Court.
Note, In each of the Tribes you see their Army first, The General's Tent or Pavilion in the midst, and the Tents of the Tribe behind.
In the second Plate. · The two undermoft Coverings, (viz.) that of Goats Hair, and that of fine Linnen, were divided into several Curtains ; but the two uppermost were not. The Covering of fine Linnen was ten Curtains; the Covering of Goats Hair was eleven Curtains, that one Curtain might hang down on the five Pillars before the Entrance of the Tabernacle, or be doubled backward upon it, Ex, xxvi. 1, &c. And yet besides this there was a Hanging or Vail of fine Linnen for the Door of the Tabernacle, of blue, purple, and scarlet, wrought with Needle- · work, like the Vail that hung at the Entrance of the Holy of Holies: And therefore St. Paul calls that the second Vail, Heb. ix, 3. in reference to this Hanging at the Door of the Tabernacle, or Holy Place, which was the first. var á