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supposed to exist between our Lord and those persons and things which prefigured Him, have been with equal injudiciousness carried out to the most absurd lengths.
While this is the case with the more ancient writers on the types, those of modern days, whether they have noticed them in works written wholly on the subject, or only in part embracing them, have been liable to serious objection. Many of them have made the very mistakes which may be noticed in their predecessors; while others, in endeavouring to avoid them, have fallen into the very common error of going to the opposite extreme, and instead of finding types where there are none, have not discovered them where they appear to the Author to exist; and guarding against that prolixity which characterized the old works complained of, a conciseness really as faulty and scarcely less objectionable has marked many of their productions.
What appeared, therefore, to the Author to be wanting was, something that should go between these two extremes. Since this work was commenced the Author has read the able
treatise of the Rev. Patrick Fairbairn, on the Typography of Scripture. So nearly does it approach to what was thought to be required, and what it was meant this work should be, that, after perusing it, the Author had some idea of abandoning his design; but being convinced upon a more mature consideration, that even that work, excellent as it is, still leaves something wanting, particularly with regard to simplification, and bringing out the separate types, he determined to proceed. How far he has supplied this desideratum, and escaped the errors he has, or thinks he has, perceived in those who have preceded him, or whether his own work may not be chargeable with still greater faults than can be discovered in others, he of course leaves his readers to judge. He can only say it has been his careful aim to keep the middle course; and though conscious of many defects, his humble hope is that he has not altogether failed.
Notwithstanding the substance of the following work was introduced in the form of pulpit exercises, yet, knowing the prejudice existing in the public mind against that kind of produc
tion when issuing from the press, the Author has materially altered their character. Almost the whole, with the exception of what relates to the personal, ritual, and historical types, has been added, as well as some of the types themselves, whilst other things brought forward in the lectures have, upon further consideration, been given up as not being entitled to the character they were thought to possess. It is with no sanguine expectations that the Author sends forth his labours to the world; but still resolved that the praise of whatever good they may be the means of effecting shall be given to God, to whom alone it is due.
February 26th, 1850.
THE OLD MINE EXPLORED.
ON THE TYPICAL CHARACTER OF THE OLD
cursory reader of the Sacred Volume must be aware that the Old Testament contains a number of peculiar forms of communication, and allusions to singular practices, appointments, and institutions, which, if viewed in themselves, and apart from any ulterior design, appear strange, if not absurd, and altogether inconsistent with the reverence which is demanded for them, and the volume in which they are contained. These things, so far as the people of God were concerned, must either have owed their origin to their own natural, uncontrolled disposition; or they were derived from the nations by which they were surrounded, and whose practices they were allowed to adopt; or else they must have been divinely appointed.
The early practice of sacrificing not to be reasonably ac
counted for, but by supposing it to have been divinely appointed, with a typical end in view.
Amongst the peculiarities to which the preceding remarks are especially applicable, is to
be reckoned the custom of presenting victims upon the altar. That sacrifices have been offered from a very early period, not only amongst the heathen, but also by the Jews, is a divinely-established fact. Abel, before the flood; Noah, on leaving the ark; Job, and many others among the patriarchs, presented their various offerings to the Almighty ; but what inducement there could be to the practice, if our attention be confined to the offerers themselves, it is not easy to conceive. The habit of keeping up intercourse among themselves by means of gifts which they presented to each other, and feasts which they celebrated, having early obtained among men, it has been supposed by some that sacrifices and offerings were instituted under the impression that they would have the same effect upon their deities as these entertainments were known to produce upon themselves; and that they were presented with no other end in view than to conciliate the favour of their gods, and to keep up an amicable understanding with them. That such was really their origin seems hardly possible; for it is matter of question whether in that case they would have presented to their gods the best of their creatures, as it is known they did, when there were fruits of the earth, which would have been equally appropriate and acceptable. *
The presenting of living, valuable creatures in sacrifice, carries with it the idea of a sense of sin; but the shedding of blood, even of an inferior animal, (to say nothing of the circum
* See “ Jennings's Jewish Antiquities,” p. 189; and Dr. Smith, “On the Priesthood of Christ.”