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as to have their hearts circumcised, or to be blessed with all temporal blessings, or to have all the curses put upon their enemies.
Indeed this very Scripture is by Nehemiah made the ground of pleading with God for the return of his people; though the two tribes were already returned, and he among them. But he appears to have been clear, that the sense of this promise extended to the return of the whole twelve tribes, who should have a better settlement in their own land, than this embryo in the present state of two tribes did represent: and according to this apprehension his faith is strong, and his prayer fervent. And if the Jews should not be delivered from any one of the captivities that were to follow, then the promise of Moses, and the faith and prayer of Nehemiah would all come to nothing. Yea, if God only deliver some of them from their captivities, and not all of them, Nehemiah's prayer will not be answered, nor his desires satisfied, though wrought in him by the extraordinary working of the Spirit of God. (Neh. i, 8—11.)
Indeed the two tribes brought back were as an earnest, or first fruits, of the return of the remaining tribes; and as an assurance of Christ's coming out of Judah; and they were accordingly continued till that event came to pass. But this is very short of gathering the twelve tribes from among all nations, and from the utmost end of heaven ! The two tribes were only brought from Babylon to Jerusalem, which were not distant more than six hundred miles; but what is this in comparison of the ends of heaven, which are counted from the north pole to the south?
Therefore we conclude, that neither the promise of Moses, nor the hope and prayer of Nehemiah, are the one half fulfilled. But they shall be the saints' prayers and hopes are not lost, though sometimes long sown before they spring up. The Apostle's prayer for the conversion of the gentile kings and nations was not answered till the time of Constantine the Great -three hundred years after. And the prayers of the saints under the altar shall be answered; though it is now above 1500 years, and they are not fulfilled.
Chapter xxxii, 15—44.
Verses 15-18 contain the sins of the Jews: "But Jeshurun Jerusalem) waxed fat and kicked, &c." Verses 19-34 describe the wrath and revenge that God would exercise upon them for those sins: "When the Lord saw it, he abhorred, &c." Verses 35-44 represent God as comforting the Jews, and proving a terror to their enemies: "To me belongeth vengeance " and recompense; their i. e. their enemies", foot shall slide in “due time, for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things “that shall come upon them make haste: for the Lord shall “ judge (or shall plead the cause of*) his people, and repent himself for his servants, when he seeth that their power is gone,
And he shall say, Where
" and there is none shut up or left. “are their gods, their rock in whom they trusted? &c. Let them rise up and help you, and be your protection. See now "that I, even I am He, and there is no God with me; I kill, " and I make alive; I wound, and I heal; neither is there any “ that can deliver out of my hand. For I lift up my hand to “ heaven, and say, I live for ever. If I wet my glittering sword, and mine hand take hold on judgement, I will render venge“ance to mine enemies, and I will reward them that hate me. "I will make mine arrows drunk with blood (and my sword "shall devour flesh) and that with the blood of the slain, and "of the captives, from the beginning of revenges upon the “enemy. Rejoice, O ye Gentiles, (see Rom. xv, 10,) with his “people; for he will avenge the blood of his servants, and will "render vengeance to his adversaries, and will be merciful to "his land, and to his people."
Now the sins of the Jews we have known, and the judgements of God upon them; "their power is gone,” and they are "scattered into corners :" but we never saw or heard these promises fulfilled. For, first, we never knew by Scripture, history, or experience, that the nations of the Gentiles rejoiced with the Jews, as sharers in the same general salvation, according to Romans xv, 10. For this was certainly not effected in * So Piscator: "Causam populi sui aget.”
the Apostle's time: the two great streams ran cross-way in this matter. And whilst Christ was on earth, neither he nor his disciples preached in the way of the Gentiles, but kept close to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And when the Gentiles received the Gospel, the Jews had refused it. Indeed the Jews were under spirtual blindness, (as the Apostle tells us,) and were to continue so, till the fulness of the Gentiles were come in.k So that instead of a reciprocal rejoicing in one another's spiritual salvation, they, with great indignation, conceive us to be in error; and we, with equal sorrow, conceive them to be in error. And as for temporal salvation, both Jews and Gentile christians were, after the Apostle's time, under the heathen Roman slavery; and from thence forward were the christians bloodily persecuted for three hundred years in the ten persecutions, and afterwards under the Pope: and the Jews to this day are dispersed as a despised people.
These things being premised, it follows of necessary consequence, that the general and bloody vengeance on all the enemies of the Jews has never been performed; and therefore we need not waste time in attempting to prove it.
There are three principal heads of our position, most patheti cally and emphatically prophesied and promised in the Psalms : FIRST, the universal power of Christ, both conversive and coercive; and, correlatively, the subjection of the whole world to Christ, either by consent or constraint ;-SECONDLY, the just time of fulfilling this ;-THIRDLY, the sabbatism on earth, which the saints are then to enjoy. The first and second I shall proceed to prove.
Psalms ii and viii.
The second Psalm is spoken to Jews and Gentiles, (verses 1, 2, and 8,) and is carried by the apostles past their own times to after generations. For the Jewish government, being then mixed with the Roman power, both of them, jointly concurring, did put Christ to death and persecute the apostles; upon which
i Matt. x, 5. j Acts xiii, 45, 46. k Rom. xi, 25.
the apostles convert the second Psalm, with a part of the eighth, into a prayer, and turn the bent of it both upon Jews and Gentiles. "They lifted up their voice to God with one accord, "and said, Lord, thou art God, which hast made heaven and "earth, and the sea, and all that in them is; (as in Ps. viii,) "who, by the mouth of thy servant David hast said, Why did "the heathen rage, and the people imagine vain things? The "kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered to"gether, against the Lord and against his Christ, (as in Ps. ii.) "For of a truth against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast "anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles "and people of Israel, were gathered together, for to do, &c." "And now grant that signs and wonders may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus." The sum of their desire is, that God, according to his promise in these Psalms, (we have opened the eighth before,) would set up the power and glory of Christ over Jews and Gentiles, notwithstanding all their fierce opposition at present and for a testimony that God did allow their application of those Psalms as right, and did accept of their prayer grounded thereon, he fills them with the Spirit, and shakes the place where they prayed.m
Now neither is this second Psalm yet fulfilled, nor the Apostle's prayer upon it fully answered. It is true, that about forty years after Christ's death, that great destruction upon the Jews, prophesied by Christ, came to pass ;n and within a fewer years Herod came to a miserable end, as did also Pilate; and after him successively two and thirty Roman emperors. And about three hundred years after the incarnation of Christ, Constantine the Great, being converted unto christianity, overthrew in battle his anti-christian colleagues that opposed it. But prophecies and prayers, like streams, run on in a current, still growing greater and greater in accomplishment, till they rest in the main ocean-the fulfilling of the whole design of God, according to the entire platform contained in all the promises. This Psalm therefore according to that rule was not fully accomplished, when the apostles turned it into a prayer. The majority of the Gentiles, and the obstinate Jewish people are
1 Acts iv, 24-30. m Ibid. v. 31. n Matt. xxiv. o See Acts xii, and Fox's Martyrology.
still of the same temper against Christ. And God hath not hitherto so "spoken to them in his wrath, and vexed them in his
sore displeasure, as to make them know that he hath set HIS "KING upon his holy hill of Sion; nor hath he given unto Christ "the heathen for his inheritance, and the utmost parts of THE "EARTH for his possession, to break them that are incorrigible " with a rod of iron, and to dash them in pieces like a potter's " vessel, until kings and judges of the earth become wise, serve the Lord in fear, &c."
Mark accurately, that there must yet come a time, when Christ's anger must be "kindled, but as a little," and yet then must "all be blessed that put their trust in him." (v. 12.) This ' little,' whether it be as to time or degree, (for may mean either, or both,) must be in distinction from and comparison with that greater time and degree of Christ's anger at the ultimate judgement; yet at this little time, all them that trust in Christ are to be happy. Now if you apply this period of anger on Jews and Gentiles to the time past, since the apostles quoted this Psalm, it is near 1620 years; which you cannot call a little time: neither have believers in Christ been at any time since then universally blessed. These wicked ones must perish and the trusters in Christ be blessed at some time of eminent manifestation of Christ, as " King of Sion;" which must be before he lays down his mediatorship and power at the end of all.
And observe, that those words in the seventh verse, "this day have I begotten thee," are always applied to such evident manifestations of Christ; the latter being still greater than the former. As first, in this second Psalm, to the declaring the decree, and proclaiming him to be King; Secondly, to his resurrection; P Thirdly, in relation to his future appearing to set up that visible kingdom on earth of which we speak. q For not to repeat what I have said in page 61, &c. on those words of the Apostle,-" Unto which of the angels said He at any time, Thou art my son, this day have I begotten thee? &c." "and when again he SHALL bring his first begotten Son into the inhabited world, he saith, Let all the angels worship him ;"-I only add, be mindful of the Apostle's 'shall,' used after p Acts xiii, 33. q Heb. i, 5, 6.