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can more naturally and completely express victory and triumph over an enemy than this? . AND THEIR BLOOD SHALL BE SPRINKLED UPON MY GARMENTS, AND I WILL STAIN ALL MY RAIMENT.
Some are of opinion that the great Shepherd and Bishop of our souls suffered the wrath of God, because he said to his disciples the day before the sulemn scene of his crucifixion was exhibited at mount Calvary, “All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the Shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad.” The words to which our Saviour refers, and other things in connexion, are as follows: “Awake, O sword against my Shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the Lord of hosts: Smite the Shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered, and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones. And it shall come to pass that in all the land saith the Lord, two parts shall be cut off and die; but the third part shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part through the fire, and I will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say it is my people; and they shall say The Lord is my God."*
There is no evidence from these words, taken in their connexion, that any reference was had to the suffering Saviour. This sword is not called upon to awake against the good Shepherd, who was always willing to lay down his life for the sheep. But it is the sword of justice called upon to awake against God's enemies 'T'he learned Faber's translation of the verse is thus; “Awake, O sword, against my Shepherd, and against the mighty man my neighbou., saith the Lord of hosts. Smite the Shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered; for I will turn my hand even against the mean ones”-And then his commentary on the word Sword is as follows; "The sword of divine justice shall a wake against Antichrist, against that presumptuous shepherd or ruler, that mighty tyrant, who after having spoken marvellous things against the God of gods, at length in the last days, even when the judgments of heaven are abroad, dares to make himself the immediate neighbour of the Lord, and sets up á new domination in the peculiar city of the Most High, by planting the curtains of his pavilion between the seas in the glorious holy mountain. When the shepherd is smitten, such of his flock, as escape the avenging sword of him that rideth upon the white horse, shall be scattered far and wide; and agreeably to the parallel prophecy of Isaiah, shall carry into all nations the tidings of their overthrow, and of the marvellous manifestation of the power of God. Great, however, will be the slaughter of them; for the Lord will turn his hands not only against the leader, but likewise against the mean ones, even all his inferior followers. Of the whole Antichristian Army, two thirds shall perish, and one third only shall be preserved. This third part shall be brought through the fire of affliction to sincere faith and repentance; and every one that is left of all the nations which come against Jerusalem, shall go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts."
* Zech. xii, 7-9,
The sword of divine justice, says Faber shall awake against Antichrist; he then introduces the following note to confirm and illustrate his sentiment on the subject. “After having examined this passage as carefully as I am able, I rest in the opinion of Dr. Blayney, that it has not the most distant relation to the death and sufferings of Christ. I believe that our Lord cites a part of it merely as a proverbial saying, laying it down as a matter of course, for the followers to disperse when their leader was taken off.—The subject of the present prophecy is the restoration of Judah, and the overthrow of a mighty confederacy before Jerusalem. In the course of it we are told, that some shepherd, or prince, or some mighty man who made himself the neighbour of God should be smitten by a sword: that the wrath of the Almighty should be kiq. dled not only against him, but against the little ones or mean ones, or those, as Dr. Blayney justly observes, *that are usually held of less account than the common people:” that in consequence of this display of the divine vengeance, such as escaped should be seattered: that these scattered ones should compose the third part of the whole, the two other parts having been cut off: and that this third part, consisting of the scattered ones, should by the severity of their sufferings be converted to the profession of the truth. In all this there is so much that is applicable to the general drift of the prophecy, and so little that is applicable to the times of our Lord, that I think with Dr. Blayney; "perhaps the passage in question might never have been considered differently from the rest, had not our Saviour thought fit to make use of it for the purpose of illustration."
A shepherd denotes a prince. But what remarkable prince is to be snitten at the era of the restoration of Judah, except Antichrist now become the last head of the Roman beast? God styles him my slep. herd, as he styles Nebuchadnezzar my servant, merely because he is an instrument of vengeance in his hand. And he speaks of him as being mighty, and as making himself his neighbour, because he attempts as it were to elbow the Almighty out of his own peculiar residence, the glorious holy mountain of Zion.”
In St. John's Revelation we have this proposition. “And he treadeth the wine press of the fierceness of the wrath of Almighty God.” This, perhaps, some will
say proves to a demonstration, that in giving bimself a ransom for sianers, Christ suffered the wrath and curse of the Almighty. But, because he trod the winepress of the wrath of God, how does it follow from this, that he himself bore the wrath of God? The wine press of the fierceness of the wrath of God, expresses, by a metaphor, the place where God manifests the fierceness of his wrath towards his enemies; and, Christ's treading this wine press of divine wrath, expresses his glorious conquest over the enemies of Alinighty God. The text now in view, is parallel with that in Isaiah, which we have already endeavoured to explain. I have trodden the wine press alone I will tread them in mine anger—and their blood shall be sprinkled upon my garments, and I will stain all my raiment. This we conceive expresses nothing but glorious victory and triumph. And that in the Revelation is of the same tenor. We shall find it evidently to be so, if we consider it in its connexion. Dr. Doddridge's paraphrase accords with the foregoing sentiment; "And a glorious vision immediately followed; for I saw heaven opened; and behold and observe it with due attention, a wbite horse appeared, and he that sat upon it (was) called Faithful and True, being indeed no other, than the person speaking of him elsewhere as the Amen, the faithful and true Witness; and he judges and makes war in righteousness and not like the unjust conquerors of the earth, who are so ready to use their superior power to oppress all that fall under it. This was the glorious Prince, whose eyes Care] piercing as a flame of fire; and many dia. dems were upon his head, having also a mysterious name written upon them, which no man knows but himself: to signify that there are mysteries in his naa ture, and in the administration of his kingdom, which it is impossible for men to find out.
Arid, to express the irresistible power with which he triumphs over bis enemies, and brings destruction upon
them according to his pleasure, he was clothed in a garment dipped in blood; and his name is called The Word of God, the glorious and Divine Person whom I saw elsewhere spoken of, as in the beginning with God, and himself God, and the great Medium of Divine Revelation in
“And the armies which are in heaven followed him, in token of being willingly and entirely under his
eommand, and they appeared [riding] on white horses, and themselves clutved in fine linen, wbite, and perfectly clean and pure, to denote their perfect innocence and righteousness.
"Aad he still retains this circumstance in the vision, I at first saw of him, that there went out of his mouth a sharp sword, that with it he might smite the heathen; to signify the power of his word; and he shall gov. ern them with a rod of iron; and he treadeth the wine-press of the indignation and wrath of Almighty God, which was signified by the blood staining his garments, to intimate that he shall subdue the proudest enemies with as much ease as men burst grapes by treading them under their feet.* And he bath upon his garment, and upon his thigh, that is, upon his sword which hangs upon his thigh, a magnificent and exalted name written, even KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS; to signify his universal empire over all the princes and potentates on earth and in heaven.”+
In bis Dissertation on the Prophecies, Bishop Newton's commentary on the place is to the same purpose. "It was said by the angel, speaking of the kings subject to the beast, Rev. xv, 11, 14. "These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings; and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful.” And the vision (verse 11_21.) is added by way of enlargement and explanation of that great event. Heaven is opened, and our Saviour cometh forth riding upon a white horse, as a token of his victory and triumph over his enemies. He is described in such characters as are appropriate to him in this Book and in the ancient Prophets. On bis head also were many crowns, to denote his numerous conquests and kingdoms which are now (xi, 15,) become the kingdoms of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever." As the Jewish high priest
* Comparc Isaiah Isii, 23, with Rev. xix, 15.
+ Rev. xix, 11-16.