Imágenes de páginas

nature—and every glory in which He will be revealed, should be the meditation of our hearts; and the more it is so, the more will the blessed force of that Word be understood, " Let him that glorieth glory in the Lord.”

This is given to us of our God, to be the staple of our joy; and while the soul dwells on this, the world becomes dim, and all earthly hopes vanish, while the Word of promise is echoed back, “ Even so, come Lord Jesus! come quickly!"

SUGGESTIVE.—If we attend carefully to the “words” of the 10th chapter of the Book of Revelation, we may be kept clear of much of the perplexity and confusion which prevail in the Church of God with respect to this momentous and deeply-interesting portion of God's Holy Word. Chap. x., “The mighty angel (verse 1) sware (verse 6) by Him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer: but (verse 7) in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.”

In chap. xi.ver.15, to the end we have the fulfilment of this oathconfirmed prophecy. “And (verse 15) the seventh angel sounded, and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ, and He shall reign for ever and ever. And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God, saying, We give Thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come, because Thou hast taken to Thee Thy great power, and hast reigned.” (verse 18) the nations were angry, and Thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that Thou shouldest give reward unto Thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear Thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.” “ And (verse 19) the temple of God was opened in Heaven, and there was seen in His temple the ark of His testament: and there were lightnings and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.” My object is to call attention to the thought, that the 18th and 19th verses of this 11th chapter contain a complete general account of the finished mystery of God. That, in fact, the Book of Revelation has an end here.

That which follows consists of circumstantial scenes or detailed pictures, which compose the eventful history, so wonderfully generalized and condensed as to be comprised in the last two verses of the 11th chapter.

M. Worcester,

“ And

No. XX.




TION OF A KING; AND ON THE TERM “ LO AMMI.” a I DESIRE to make a few remarks upon the Priesthood

centre of unity to Israel,—and upon the change which took place at the time of the establishment of Royalty. That a remarkable change then took place cannot be questioned. Ichabod had been written upon Israel, and every ordinary relationship with God had been broken, for the Ark of the Covenant had been taken. Hannah, in the song in which she celebrates, before this disaster, the goodness of God toward herself, had proclaimed that He would give power to His king, and would exalt the horn of His anointed.

The kingly rule is established, but, at first, not such as was according to the will of God, but, in truth, by the great sin of the people, who, in making a king, rejected God, who was their King. And from that time the Ark was never restored to its place in the Tabernacle, but David removed it to the Mount Sion; and having established all the order of the house of God upon a new footing, he had to leave to his successor (Solomon) the execution of all that which he had received by inspiration, as well as the instalment of the Priests in the temple. The order established by David was communi. cated to him by revelation, just as much as that of the Tabernacle had been to Moses. Everything was arranged afresh, although there were elements common to both. It was, then, the epoch of a great change, when grace, acting by means of David, placed the blessing of the people upon a new footing, at a time when all had been lost. The prophet comes in between the two states referred to, it is true, as a sort of mediator, in the person of Samuel; but we will leave this for the present. His office was the sovereign means, employed by God, to maintain His relationship with the people, when it was unfaithful and fallen into decay. That I have rightly estimated this standing of the kingly authority of David, is proved by the close of the lxxviii. Psalm, where it is said:

a This translation from the French has been corrected by the author.

When God heard this, he was wroth, and greatly abhorred Israel: so that he forsook the tabernacle of Shiloh, the tent which he placed among men; and delivered his strength into captivity, and his glory into the enemy's hand. He gave his people over also unto the sword; and was wroth with his inheritance. The fire consumed their young men ; and their maidens were not given to marriage. Their priests fell by the sword ; and their widows made no lamentation. Then the Lord awaked as one out of sleep, and like a mighty man that shouteth by reason of wine. And he smote his enemies in the hinder parts: he put thein to a perpetual reproach. Moreover he refused the tabernacle of Joseph, and chose not the tribe of Ephraim: but chose the tribe of Judah, the mount Zion which he loved. And he built his sanctuary like high palaces, like the earth which he hath established for ever. He chose David also his servant, and took him froin the sheepfolds : From following the ewes great with young he brought him to feed Jacob his people, and Israel his inheritance. So he fed them according to the integrity of his heart; and guided thein by the skilfulness of his hands.

Here we see the sovereign grace and election of God, who raises up David, as an instrument to lift up the people, when God had forsaken His tabernacle, and delivered up His people to the sword. This passage is very important, as portraying the true royalty willed by God; but our subject now is the priesthood.

But before giving power to His king, and lifting up the horn of His Anointed, of whom the True Anointed was to be the descendant, and who bore, indeed, prophetically, his name of “ Beloved” (David, see Ezekiel) before the existence of that kingly authority, what was the link between God and the people? What, I say, was the link when there was no

For some link there must have been. He who is ever so little acquainted with the ways of God in the Old Testament, will at once answer,

" It was the high priest.” For after Moses (who was king in Jeshurun), who else could


be the link? The only person who could have been so, was Joshua; but in the very times of Joshua it was the high priest rather who was so.

Let us cite the passages which speak of this. Take Numbers xxvii. 15-23.; there we see Joshua, who was to command, placed before Eleazar and the congregation; and when a portion of the honor of Moses has been conferred upon him, in order that the people might obey him, he must needs remain before Eleazar the priest, who enquired of the Lord by Urim and Thummim. At his word (the word of Eleazar) was to be the coming in, and at his word was to be the going out of him (Joshua) and of the children of Israel with him, and of all the congregation. Indeed, if God was King in the midst of His people, His high priest, who drew near to him, was, of necessity, the centre of unity. It was he (the high priest) who bore the names of the twelve tribes upon his breast, before the Lord,—and their judgment -- continually, having the Urim and Thummim, sole true centre of unity. On the other hand, when even it was Joshua who directed them, who communicated to them the will of the Lord, it was, nevertheless, always at the word of Eleazar, that they were to come in; and at the word of Eleazar, that they were to go out. That Israel was unfaithful to this, in the times of the Judges, is true; but what was the consequence thereof?

God adds a sad history at the end of this book (but it is a history of facts which happened about the commencement of this period, for Phinehas was high priest) in order to give us an idea of the state of things within the country (for almost all the book is occupied with what passed between the people and their enemies), and therein we see that in their affliction, it was the priesthood which was their resource and common centre, Judges xviii. 26-28. It is the same in the division of the land, as also in all else, Numbers xiv. 17; Joshua xiv. 1., Eleazar is always placed at the head. This had never been the case in the time of Moses. And I ask any attentive reader of the Bible whether such was the place of the high priest in the times of the kings. I am aware it may be replied: "He always bore the breast

plate with the names of the tribes." Be it so. But it is forgotten that God had already abandoned the people, upon that footing; that the Ark had been delivered up to the Philistines, and that the king chosen of God, inspired by God, saviour of His people through grace, had taken possession of it, and re-settled all upon a new footing, as type and representative of the Anointed of the Lord, of Christ the King of Israel, of the King who should establish the kingdom of God, and govern all as such. From that time all hangs upon the conduct of the king: When the kingly office failed, the priesthood could preserve nought. Now the character of Christ in Israel, at that time, will be that of King, and, consequently, it is under that same character that His type and precursor has appeared. Although He be a Priest, yet is it as Melchisedek (a Priest upon his throne) and not as Aaron, entering into the Holy place, that he will act in that day. Aaron is the type of that which he is now; and, therefore, in the epistle to the Hebrews, in the very act of showing that Christ is personally after the order of Melchisedek, the Apostle, so soon as he speaks of His present services, uses the type of Aaron. On the other hand, when the temple is dedicated, the Priests cannot abide there by reason of the glory, and it is Solomon,—a remarkable type of a kingly priest who acts. He blesses Israel, and blesses the Lord, as Melchisedek had done when Abraham was returning from the conquest of the kings. David the Deliverer, and Solomon established in glory, types of the Lord Jesus, the Anointed King in Israel, necessarily take the prominent place, and all hangs on them. For instance, when Solomon sins, ten tribes are rent from his family and from the temple. The fate of the people hangs upon the conduct of the king as leader of the people (2 Chron. vii. 17—20). The history of the kings, from Rehoboam to Zedekiah, shows us that it was thus; and as to the fact, it was the sin of Manasseh, brought, at length, entire ruin on the people and the house of God (2 Kings xxi. 11-14).

The examination of the character of Christ, as Melchizedek, puts the change which took place as to the

« AnteriorContinuar »