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more probable, that a forerunner proclaiming such tidings would rather publish them in populous cities, it is expressly foretold, that he would be a voice crying in the wilderness, 11. xl. 3.
The different forts of prophecies that we are comparing, agree in general predictions concerning the Meffiah's humiliation and sufferings : The prophecies considered in this chapter are, in several points, more particular than those that were confidered formerly. The 11th of Zechariah contains feveral minute circumstances, evidently applicable to the history of Judas's treachery. The person who is there faid to be betrayed, or sold, for a very inconsiderable price, is called the Lord; the betrayer is represented as voluntarily offering his fervice to those who were to employ him ; and not only is the price of that treachery very precisely specified, viz. thirty pieces of silver ; but also the particular use to which that sum was to be applied in the event ; it was to be bestowed on the potter's field. When it is said, “ Cast it into the · Potter's field;" that singular way of speaking seems to be a hint at the effect of Judas's remorse, cauling him to cast away with indignation what he had before grasped at with so much greediness. The more minute fome of these things are in themfelves, the greater is the evidence of divine foreknowledge in the prediction of them ; because the conformity between the prediction and the history is so much the more circumstantial.
IV. As to doctrinal characters, which are to be considered apart more fully afterwards, it is sufficient to observe at present, that the two classes of prophecies in view agree in describing the perso: they speak of, as a person of fingular and incomparable righteousness himself, and as the source of righteousness to others. As in the first class he is called God's righteous. servant, who snould have righteousness for the girdle of his loins, 18. xi. 5.
and should make many righteous, or justify many, If. liii. 11.; so in the second class he is called the righteous Branch, the Lord our righteousness, Jer. xxiii. 5.6. in whom his people should have righteousness and strength, ll. xlv. 24.
As to the instructions concerning divine consolations, and the uncommon exultation and triumph of God's people, so oft mentioned in the prophecies formerly considered, instructions of the same nature abound also in the prophecies concerning a divine person incarnate ; as will be evident to any who considers Il. xl. 1. 2. 9. conipared with If. lii. 7. 9. li. 3. Zech. ii. 10.
And whereas the prophecies concerning the light of the Gentiles tell us, that he would feed his people as a flock; that he would cause them to feed in the ways; that their pastures should be in all high places; that he that would have mercy on them would lead them; and that by the springs of waiers he would guide them : as also, that his mouth would be as a tharp sword ; that he would be as a polished shaft hid in God's quiver; and that with the rod of his mouth he would smite the earth, and with the breath of his mouth he would slay the wicked * ; the very fame figures, borrowed from the work of shepherds, and from the weapons of warriors, are made use of in the prophecies confidered in this chapter, particularly in If. xl. 2. Mic. v.4. Pfal. xlv. 3. cx. 2.
V. It is of manifold use, in this essay, to observe the harmony between the doctrine of the prophets, and of the apostles, in various other articles, esides what relates more directly to the Messiah's perfon; and though some of these other articles have been taken notice of already, yet this matter is of importance enough to deserve more particular consideration.
See If. xlix. 9. 10. 2. & xi. 4.
It has been proved already, as to the Messiah's offices, that, according to the Old Testament predictions, he was to be the universal prophet, priest, and king, of the people of God, in all nations and ages of the world; and particularly, as to his priestly office, that the Old Testament contains the same mystery of redemption that is far more fully reveal. ed in the New. It is of importance to obferve, that there is a far greater number of passages in the prophecies relating to this doctrine ihan what some are apt to imagine, seeing it is by this doctrine that we must explain the passages where, without express mention of the Messiah's facrifice and intercefsion, the prophets speak of him as a priest, as a priest for ever, as a king and priest on his throne, Zech. vi. 13.; as sprinkling many nations, If. lii. 15 ; as being God's covenant and salvation to the ends of the earth, If. xlix. 6. implying evidently that he was to be in a peculiar manner the author of the blessings included in God's covenant and salvation and where they speak of mens being bleffed in him, Plal. Ixxii. 17. yea, of all nations being blessed in him, Gen. xxvi. 4.; of the mercies of the everlasting covenant as his mercies, If. lv.; of the blood of the covenant as that which brings prisoners out of the pit where there is no water, Zech. ix. 11. which in fcripture-style fignifies relief from the greatest misery; of the fountain opened for sin and uncleanness, Zech, xiii. 1.; of finishing the tranfgression, making an end of fin, making reconciliation for iniquity, and bringing in everlasting righteousness, Dan. ix. 24.; of the Messialis being to be cut off, but not for himself; and, in general, all the passages which speak of his humiliation and futierings, or which 1peak of bis people as the ranfomed or redeemed of the Lord, 11. xxxv. 10. li. 11. lxii. ult. *That these various passages, and others of the fame nature, are to be explained by the doctrine of
redemption, is evident from the common rule of interpretation fo oft mentioned formerly, That pafsages more obfcure and general thould be explained by those that are more plain and particular. Now the more general expressions of the prophets * which represent the Messiah as the cause and author of falvation and happiness, in a manner entirely peculiar to himself, cannot be otherwise explained or accounted for than by the doctrine of redemption : especially when we consider, that the Messiah's revealing and confirming the doctrine of salvation are characters that it behoved him to have in common with many others; whereas it is never said, nor can it be said, of any of these other teachers, that they themselves are God's covenant and falvation, If. xlix. 6. or that the mercies of God's covenant are their mercies, Il. lv. 3. The singularity of the style and expressions of the prophets concerning the influence of the Messiah on the salvation of sinners, proves that the thing itself would be of a fingular and extraordinary nature : and besides all this, several of the passages just now cited, if we consider the contexts which they belong to, will be found to speak either of the light of the Gentiles, or of a divine person incarnate. Thus Zech. is. 9. 10. speaks of an eminently righteous king of Zion, having salvation, speaking peace to the Heathen and ruling to the ends of the earth. In Zech. xi. xii. xiii. the prophet speaks of a divine person incarnate, and in a state of humiliation, besides other characters peculiarly applicable to the times of the gospel +. And Dan. ix. treats expresrly both of the coming of the Messiah, and of the defolation of Judea that should happen after his coming, as will be made appear more fully afterwards.
It was hinted above, and it is needful to have it in view all along, that the prophets themselves, instead of saying that God's righteousness and falvation were revealed (or fully declared) by them, speak expressly of these things, as things that were to be revealed * at a remarkable future period of time, to which they carry forward the expectations of the church and people of God. Notwithstandthis it may be truly faid, that the mystery of the gospel is contained in the writings of the prophets, Rom. xvi. 26.; and that not only in the passages which come nearest to a direct affertion of that mystery, but also in the passages from which that mystery may, by just confequence, be deduced.
* See above, p. 65.
+ See Zech, xiii, 2.9.
Whereas the doctrine of the Messiah's benefits is necessarily connected with that of his offices, and is in substance the same in the writings of the prophets and of the apostles, it is of importance to consider this matter more particularly, for refuting false notions concerning the predictions of the Meffiah; as if; in the literal sense, they described him only as a temporal deliverer. As the prophecies concerning the humiliation and sufferings of that extraordinary person are utterly inconsistent with the Jewish notions of a temporal Messiah ; so the prophecies concerning the glory and exaltation of that person are applicable only to that spiritual and heavenly glory formerly explained and proved.
The above-cited prophecies about the Messiah's offices, prove, that he was to bring his people into a state of salvation, including the following three comprehensive benefits, together with their neceffary concomitants and fruits. 1. A state of spiritual light and divine knowledge; and particularly of the knowledge of God's covenant and falvation, and of his infinite love, grace, and mercy, towards finners themselves, through the Melliah ; which knowledge is the more immediate effect of the Mef
* See If, lvi. 1. &c.