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WORDS OF SCRIPTURE
THE GLORIOUS ADVENT
LORD JESUS CHRIST
The Restoration of Judah and Israel.
“Bellevest thou the Prophets?"-Acts xxvi. 27.
“And Jerusalem shall be inhabited again in her own place, even
" And the Lord shall be King over all the earth."-Zech. xiv.9
“At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the Lord.'
“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem; they shall prosper that love
The glorious reign of Messiah on earth, and the final restoration of Israel and Judah to the Holy Land, after a dispersion through the nations for nearly 1800 years, are topics, which have been taken up so hastily by some per. sons, and treated in so visionary and improbable a manner by them, as almost to deter others from examining into the truth of these events : now, in order to arrive at solid information and to avoid a multitude of errors and idle conjectures upon these subjects, the required umpire seems to be, What saith the Scriptures? How readest thou? “For we bave not followed cunningly devised fables (saith the Apostle Peter, 2 Pet. i. 16,) when we made known unto you The POWER and the COMING of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eye witnesses of HIS MAJESTY." And of such vital importance were these truths, that he saith, Moreover I will endeavour that ye may be able after my decease to have these things always in remembrance. 2 Peter i. 15.
Intimately connected with the reign of Christ will be the final restoration of God's ancient people the Jews : a people concerning whom the word of God has been so remarkably
fulfilled, and continues to be so even after their long dispersion, as we read, Lo, the people shall dwell alone, and shall not be reckoned among the nations. Who can count the dust of Jacob, and the number of the fourth part of Israel ?" Num. xxiii. 9, 10. As the stars of heaven (said God to Abraham) so shall thy seed be. Gen. xv. 5. A people that must ever be interesting to Christians, from the love which our Redeemer manifested to them: on one occasion, he observed “I am not sent, but unto the lost sheep of the house of Is. rael” Matt. xv. 24. And again be strictly enjoins his apostles, "Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not : But rather go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Matt. x. 5, 6. And though he used to foretel all the particulars of his own sufferings, cruci. fixion, and agonies, unmoved, yet the Lord could not think upon the evils that awaited Jerusalem, without his dropping a tear of most compassionate sympathy! neither did Messiah reject them until they had first rejected him: nor will he reject them for ever, “For I would not, brethren, that ye sbould be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits, that, Blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in, And so all Israel shall be saved : For if the casting away of them be the reconciling of the world; what shall the receiving of them be, * but life from the dead ? Rom. xi, 25, 26, 15.
The sacred truths of prophecy are so blended together, that often the most distinct events will be found inseparably treated of in the same verse ; insomuch that when Mes. siah had occasion to open the 61st chapter of Isaiah, he closed the book in the middle of the sentence, after having read so far as related to his first Advent: as it were, thus to
* Sce section 5 of Part 3, where this is elucidated.
mark the distinction between these two events, The acceptable year of the Lord, and, The day of vengeance of our God. See Luke iv. 14-21. This web-like spirit of prophecy is so interwoven throughout the Holy Volume that it here by seems to participate in the very nature of that Eternal Being who sees all past present and future, in one omnipresent glance; insomuch that to a reflecting mind, this may serve also to indicate its divine origin.
It was never my design to quote every text; but if I may seem to have been too full in some places, let it be truly attributed to the desire of being more satisfactory and more convincing ; particularly where the subject touched upon points that have never before been satisfactorily proved to the human mind. It is admitted that great danger may often arise when proving a subject by means of detached sentences; for the Scriptures might then be made to speak in opposition to their true sense: This was done by Satan when tempting our Divine Lord, and this will only his children be capable of wilfully doing, in order to subserve their private ends; but notwithstanding such sacrilegious abuse of the word of God by the enemies of truth, we are not forbid. den to read, but on the contrary are even commanded to "search the scriptures” (John v. 39.) and it is only when so doing in obedience to the divine will, that we are likely to be led into all truth by that Holy Spirit whose peculiar office it is, To take of the things of Christ and reveal them unto us.
To be faithful in quoting prophecy, we should never unite texts which are manifestly irrelevant, nor presume to quote passages which are not strictly applicable to one and the same person, time, or event; neither should we apply to one period, person, or event, any prophecy which has been otherwise applied by the inspired writers. In consulting