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and what ye did to the two kings of the Amorites, which were on the other side of Jordan. When we heard of these things, our hearts did melt. The Lord your God is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath."

But though God had given such displays of his majesty, as filled that people with terror and amazement, they were not reclaimed from their idolatry and wickedness. And a people which cannot be reclaimed must be ripe for destruction. In God's dealings toward them, there is nothing which looks like injus

tice.

Fifthly The war, which the Jews carried on against them, was commenced on justifiable grounds, and conducted with more humanity than other wars in that day, and with as much humanity as wars often are in these days among the most civilized nations.

In that war the Jews were not the aggressors, but were first attacked by their enemies. While they sojourned in the wilderness, they were peaceable and inoffensive to the people near whom they passed. They marched through no king's territory without permission first obtained. If permission could not be obtained, they turned off, and took another route. But they were several times attacked without the least provocation; first by the Amalekites, afterward by the Canaanites; then by the Amorites, and by the people of Bashan, who all, at different times, sent armies against them, when they had received from them no injury or offence. Those nations bad actually made war upon the Vol. III. No. 12.

Hebrews, before the latter attempted an invasion of their country.

In carrying on the war the Hebrews used no unprecedented severity toward their enemies. By the usage of nations in those days, captives were considered as the property of the captors, and were usually put to death, or made slaves. But the Jews were ordered to proceed toward their enemies with more humanity. When they came to a city to besiege it, they were first to proclaim peace to it. If the city surrendered on summons, the inhabitants were all to be spared; only they were to be made tributaries. And if they submitted to the government, which God had instituted for his own people, they were to enjoy privileges much superior to those, which they enjoyed under their own kings; for to these they were slaves and vassals. If the city refused to surrender, and chose to take the chance of war, then, after it was reduced, the people were indeed to be put to the sword. This perhaps looks horrible; and war is, in its nature, a horrible busi

ness.

And

But it is no more than is often practised in this civilized age. Whenever a fortified place is taken by storm, the garrison is at the mercy of the assailants, who by the rules of war are warranted to refuse quarter. even this severity was permitted only toward the seven nations of Canaan. In a city taken from other nations, the women and children were always to be spared. And in no case, where a people submitted on summons, were any of them to be made perpetual slaves or prisWww

oners, but they were all allowed to enjoy liberty, as well as life, under the Jewish government.

The images and altars of those idolatrous nations were to be destroyed; for as long as they worshipped their false gods, they would not be subjects of that government, of which Jehovah was the supreme head. Their renouncing idolatry, and acknowledging one all-perfect Deity, was necessarily implied in their submission to their conquerors, The continuance of their su perstitions would have been a perpetual snare to the Jews.

They were to be tributaries, but not slaves. They could not be officers in the army or rulers in the government; but personal freedom and security they might enjoy. No harder terms were imposed on them, than are always imposed on conquered nations; that they submit to, and be peaceable under the government of their conquerors.

They were not subject to tax ation or military duty. It was therefore fit, that they should pay a tribute of manual labour in the public national works, as an acknowledgment to the government under which they enjoyed protection. This was instead of the taxation and military duty to which the Jews were subject.

View the case as it is stated in scripture, and there appears nothing, which looks like singular severity in the divine dealings, or like wanton cruelty in the Jewish proceedings. The command to consume without pity all whom God should deliver into their hands, could respect those only who were conquered in battle, after they had rejected terms of peace; for no other

could properly be said "to be delivered into the hands" of the conquerors. All the rest made peace, and were preserved. Accordingly we find, that when the Hivites, who had made peace, were threatened by the neighbouring nations, Joshua immediately marched an army for their succour. He faithfully performed the league, which he had made with them.

Hence it appears, that in examining the scripture, we must take a comprehensive view of the subject on which it treats. Particular passages, taken by themselves, may seem dark and intricate, when, in a connected view, they will appear just and beautiful. We never should make a particular passage an ob jection against the scripture, till we are sure we rightly understand the passage. The apostle says, "All scripture is given by inspiration of God." That this position is true, we have sufficient evidence. And it is always unjust to allege particular difficulties as objections against a general truth founded on competent evidence. The particular difficulties which we meet with in scripture, may be owing to our own misconception, inattention, and neglect of inquiry, or unfairness in making inquiry. And certainly it is much more rational to ascribe these difficulties to our own ignorance, than to suppose, that all the evidence of divine authority attending the scripture is mere delusion.

It would help us much in interpreting scripture, and in justifying the ways of Providence, if we would keep in mind the sovereignty of God. We are ex

ceedingly apt to call that unjust in God toward his creatures, which would be unjust in them toward one another. Justice in all beings is the same in its nature, but its acts and exercises may be different according to the different relations and authorities of the agents. God is supreme and infinitely wise. His ways and thoughts are not as ours. The world and all creatures in it, men, and all they possess, are God's property and at his dispos al. Though he will injure none of his creatures, yet he has a sovereign right to deal with them, as his perfect rectitude shall choose, and his unerring wisdom shall direct. Though one man, or one nation, has not a right to dispose of the property of other men, or other nations, yet God has a right to order and change the conditions of men and nations according to his own will.

We find in scripture many things done by divine command, which, without such warrant, no man would have had a right to do; as in civil society, law may require or allow things, which no man may do without law. But it does not hence follow, that the law is wrong; for in the government there is that authority, which no private person may assume to himself. When we censure the ways of God, because he has ordered certain things, which men had no right to do of their own will, we, in our thoughts, place the supreme Being on a level with ourselves.

This piece of history instructs us, that the wickedness of nations is the cause of their destruction. The land of Canaan was promised to Abraham and his seed, 400 years before they took posses

sion. This promise was made on a divine foresight, that the Canaanites would so fill up the measure of their guilt, as to be no longer the subjects of divine forbearance. They were finally destroyed, because their iniquities were full. God threatened his own people, that if they practised the same iniquities, for which the Canaanites were destroyed, they must experience the same marks of his displeasure. God's threatenings were awfully verified; and they are recorded for our admonition. The Jews were broken off from the covenant of God by their unbelief. We stand by faith. Let us not be highminded, but fear. ERASTUS.

SURVEY OF NEW ENGLAND
CHURCHES.

Concluded from page 402.

ALTHOUGH the design of this Survey is unfinished, I must now offer to the churches of Christ know not in what better way I my closing address. And I can do this, than by unfolding to them the affecting and awful sentiments contained in the following parable of him who spake as never man spake.

The kingdom of heaven is likenedunto a man who sowed good seed in his field, But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. And when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst thou not sow good seed in thy field? from whence

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oners, but they were all allowed to enjoy liberty, as well as life, under the Jewish government.

The images and altars of those idolatrous nations were to be destroyed; for as long as they worshipped their false gods, they would not be subjects of that government, of which Jehovah was the supreme head. Their renouncing idolatry, and acknowledging one all-perfect Deity, was necessarily implied in their submission to their conquerors, The continuance of their superstitions would have been a perpetual snare to the Jews.

They were to be tributaries, but not slaves. They could not be officers in the army or rulers in the government; but personal freedom and security they might enjoy. No harder terms were imposed on them, than are always imposed on conquered nations; that they submit to, and be peaceable under the government of their conquerors.

could properly be said delivered into the hand conquerors. All the peace, and were prese cordingly we find, that Hivites, who had m were threatened by bouring nations, Josh ately marched an ar succour. He faithfulte ed the league, whic made with them.

Hence it appears, amining the scripture take a comprehensi the subject on which Particular passages, themselves, may see intricate, when, in view, they will appe beautiful.

We ne make a particular pas jection against the till we are sure we derstand the passage. tle says, "All script by inspiration of Go this position is tru sufficient evidence. always unjust to alle lar difficulties as of gainst a general tru on competent evider particular difficulties meet with in scriptu owing to our own mis inattention, and neg quiry, or unfairness inquiry. And cer much more rational these difficulties to o norance, than to supp the evidence of divin attending the script delusion.

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