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$14 R E L IG I O US A* F A I R S.
Mankind, there were Persons bless'd with the Spirit of Prophecy, and charg'd wksi Commissions of this Kind. Abraham, was Gen. xx. a Prophet j as God tells Abimelech. And 7' Isaac and Jacob both prophesied concerning the future State of their Children: As did Joseph to his Brethren concerning their Deliverance out of the Land of Egypt. And we find some, not long after, who, although they were not of the Hebrew Line, were endow'd with a prophetic Spirit: Such were Job and Balaam; and some others.
But, of all those to whom this divine Faculty was imparted, none was so great a Prophet, as Moses. This we are given to understand upon the Occasion of Miriam and Aaron's opposing him; whom the xii"1^. Lord reproves, thus; Hear now, my •words; if there be a prophet among you, J the Lord will make my self known unto him, in a vision; and will speak unto him in a dream. My servant Moses is not so who is faithful in all mine house'j with him will I speak mouth to moutb, even apparently, and Deut not in dark speeches. Again, it is said; xxxiv. There arose not a prophet since in Israel,
like unto Moses* whom the Lord knew face to face.
But, to tighten the Charge and Burden that lay upon Moses, by this means, God was pleas'd to take a Portion of the Spirit that mas upon hint, and put it upon seventy other Men, who were Elders of the People, and Officers over them, that they might share the Weight of Government with him. "The Lord came down Deut. xi, in a cloud, and spake unto him, and took 0s25' the spirit that was upon him, and gave it unto theseventy elders: And it came to pass that when the spirit rested upon them, they •prophesied and did not cease.
Some Prophets there were, after Moses% during the Time of the fudges. We read; that, in those Days, The Lord sent rfJudg.vL prophet unto the children of Israel. And, ^"sam- ^ there came a man of God' unto Eli, andsaid 27unto him, Thus faith the L Or. D, &c. Soon after which Samuel grew up, and became * a very extraordinary Prophet. And the more so, because, the word of the Lord 1 Sum was precious, in those days; there was no111' j open vision. To him, while he was yet a Ch|ld, the Word of the Lord was re
I Sam. iii. veal'd in Shilob. the Lord was with
<h " * him, and did let none of his words fall to the
ground. And all Israel, from Dan even to
Beersheba, knew that Samuel was ejia
blijhed, to be a prophet, of the Lor D.
After the Death of Eli, we are told
, Sam that Samuel judged the children of Israel:
vii. 6. Who was, not only, a very great Prophet
himself, but presided, over the College or
Seminary of Prophets, with great Success:
Insomuch that, from his Time to that
of the Captivity, there appears to have
been a constant and plentiful Supply of
That there was a School of the Prophets, where they were instructed in expounding the Law, and in whatever Studies might best qualify them for the Lord's bestowing a prophetic Spirit upon them, is plain from the following Passage; which relates to David, when he fled from the Persecution of Saul. It is said; David fled, and escaped, and came to Saxix. 18, muel to Ramah; and told him all that Saul &c- had done to him: And be and Samuel went and dwelt at Naioth. This Naioth, which was in the Suburbs of Ramah, was the Academy of the Prophets. There,
There, in a quiet Retirement, from the
Hurry and Bustle of the World, they prepared themselves for the Infusion of the Holy Spirit, whenever God mould vouchsafe them such a Favour. And, among them, we may conclude, Samuel chose to spend all the leisure Time he could get, from the necessary Avocations of his publick Duty.
Thither he went, with David; at once to conceal and protect him from the enrag'd Saul, and to instruct him in the most sublime and noble Arts: How to make Mankind happy by being, a pious, a mild, and a public-spirited King; and to exalt and refine his own Nature to such a Degree, as to qualify himself for the Reception and Utterance of those heavenly Predictions, relating to the MeJJiaht with which God mould, from time to time, inspire him.
And it 'was told Saul, faying. Beholds David it at Naioth in Ramah. And Saul sent mejjengers to take David. And when they saw the company of the 'Prophets prophesying, and Samuel Jlanding as appointed over them, the Spirit of God was upon the mejsen4 Sers
gers of Saul, and they also prophesied. And after sending second Messengers, and third Messengers, who all, in like manner, were possess'd with a Spirit of prophesying, at last, we are told, he went himself: And as he drew near to Naioth, the Spirit of God was upon him al/b, and he went on and prophesied until he came to Naioth in Ramah. And he Jlript off his cloaths also, and prophesied before Samuel, in like manner; and lay down naked, all that day, and all that night. So long, and so efficaciously did the Spirit of Trophefy lay hold of him, and entertain him, that David, who was chosen of the Lo R D to be a great King, and a greater Prophet, might, the more securely, make his escape from him.
However, this is not the first Mention that we have of a Company of the Prophets, and of Sauss Prophesying among them. Upon the first Interview that ever he had with Samuel, the Prophet tells him several Accidents that mould happen to him that Day, as Signs, to convince him, that he should be King of the Israelites. Among i Sam. others, this is one: After that; thoujbalt 's' come to the hill of God, where is the garrison