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and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit. And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace.” The passages, therefore, in which this name is found, may be employed in the argument, in connexion with those in which hades is the term of designation.
There is no reply, which can be made to the conclusion, at which we have arrived, unless it is, that hades in the version of the Seventy, and the corresponding word in the Hebrew bible, never mean the world of departed spirits. That such an objection is unfounded, the following passages from the Old Testament clearly show.
4 Hades from beneath is moved for thee, to meet thee at thy coming. It stirreth up the dead for thee, even all the chief ones of the earth: it hath raised up from their thrones all the kings of the earth.” This is the song of triumph on the fall of the king of Babylon. It represents the dead as assembled in one place, and all the kings of the earth as rising up to meet the tyrant. We have instances too of the opposition, in which heaven for height, and hades for depth, were conceived to stand to each other, which is entirely incon
sistent with the opinion, that the word in the Old Testament always denotes the grave. “Canst thou by searching find out God? Canst thou find out the Almighty unto perfection? It is high as heaven, what canst thou do? deeper than hades; what canst thou know?” Surely they might have looked into the grave. “If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: If I make my bed in hades, behold thou art there.” “ Though they dig into hades, thence will my band take them: though they climb up to heaven, thence will I bring them down." “ A fire is kindled in mine anger,
and shall burn to the lowest bades." The force of the figure depends upon hades being the lowest conceivable place, or a very low place in the earth, where both Jews and Greeks supposed the mansion of the dead to be situated. To check the presumption of Job, God inquires of him ;—“ Have the gates of death been opened unto thee, or hast thou seen the doors of the shadow of hades ?" This challenge shows, that the grave, the doors of which are accessible to men, is not the subject of discourse. The wicked shall be turned into
• hades, and all the nations that forget God.” Not only the wicked but the righteous are
turned into the grave, yet both do not descend to hell. But were bades used in the Old Testament for the place of departed spirits, there would be no valid argument against its having this sense in the New. We find it in the writings of the Apostles. We ask it's meaning. The abettor of universal salvation replies, that in the Old Testament it always denotes the grave. But on reading the gospels, we discover, that persons live and act in it. If therefore it means the grave in the Hebrew scriptures, it must have another signification, which will suit the descriptions given of it in the New Testament. There, in several instances at least, it obviously means the mansion of the dead. It is consequently trifling with our understandings, to say, that it sometimes signifies the grave, which may be true, while it sometimes means a place of punishment beyond the grave.
This investigation in my own judgment establishes the conclusion of the last lecture, that some men will be subjected to punishment in the future state. In the pursuit of this truth, its solemn and momentous import has not escaped my mind. Though the subject has demanded the individed and unim
passioned mind of the critic, yet the thought has not failed to arise as those passages, which disclose the fates of men, have passed in review, that you and I are travelling to eternity, and that we are personally concerned in the awful fact which has been unfolded. The reflection is not easily eluded, that the privileges which we enjoy may be abused and involve us in deeper misery. Capernaum once exalted to heaven, is now thrust down to hell. They who despised Moses' law died without mercy; of how much sorer punishment shall he be thought worthy, who rejects the gospel ? The man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day, has closed his career of pride and luxury, and in hell he lifts up his eyes being in torments. Perhaps one of my own beloved congregation is ripening for such a fate. Perhaps he is
. guilty of covetousness that gross idolatry; perhaps he is fascinated by pleasure; perhaps he is held by some great but worldly ambition; perhaps he is bewildered by error; perhaps some iron-handed vice is subduing him to the dominion of satan; perhaps, if no other foe assails him, stupidity and procrastination are hurrying his soul into the pit. This possibili
ty is a solemn and overwhelming truth. Painful as the admission is, it cannot be withheld. To deny it would subserve no valuable purpose, but would involve me, in the condemnation of a false witness, and
in the anguish of disappointment. God has given us this life, in which to prepare for the next. What folly then is superior to his, who bends all his efforts to the desires of this world, who bounds his vision by the limits of time? Will it avail any thing in the day of Jesus Christ, that he refused instruction and despised reproof? that he listened not to the monitions of the spirit and word of God, nor to the appeals of conscience, nor to the preaching of the cross? And who will be able to screen the naked spirit of that false ambassador of Christ, who fearful of giving momentary pain or of incurring the hatred of men, allows his hearers to be ignorant of their exposure or insensible of it? The awful truth, that nothing will protect the unfaithful, should never be forgotten. A little while hence, an account of my stewardship will be demanded. Then at the tribunal of Jesus Christ, we must stand together. The books will be opened and out of them we shall be judged. Among other things there recorded, is the history of my