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and soundness of his reasoning; inasmuch as it makes him enforce his petition, intercession, and deprecation, by an argument addressed to God; which, taken in its “ literal and grammatical sense,” and allowed to have its due and legitimate influence, would defeat the end which the pleader had in view; and reward his faith and importunity, with the denial of his suit, and the rejection of his prayer. How different from the fact !

Before we examine the original, let us refer to the OCCASION on which the words were first uttered by God; and, both immediately and subsequently, made use of by Moses.

The occasion of their being uttered was this: Moses, when admitted to so near a converse with God, that, “speaking after the manner of man,” it was, to his apprehension, but not to his bodily sight, as if “ the LORD* spake to him face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend,” (Exodus, xxxiii. 11.) “said unto the LORD,” (v. 12.) “Now, therefore, I pray thee, if I have found grace in thy sight, shew me thy way, that I may know thee, that I may find grace in thy sight; and consider that this nation is thy people.” (v. 13.) " And the LORD said unto Moses, I will do this thing also that thou hast spoken, for thou hast found grace in my sight, and I know thee by name.” (v. 17.) “ And Moses said, I beseech thee, shew me thy glory." (v. 18.) “And He said, I will make all my goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the Name of the LORD before thee; and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will shew mercy on whom I will shew

• The word LORD, in this place, is in large Italic capitals : Why? There is no ellipsis of 771)

mercy.” (v. 20.) And He said, thou canst not see my face; for there shall no man see me, and live.” (v. 20.) “ And the LORD said, Behold, there is a place by me: and thou shalt stand upon a rock: (v. 21.) And it shall come to pass, while my glory passeth by, that I will put thee in a clift of the rock;" (" and that rock was" (a type of ] "Christ;" 1 Cor. x. 4.)“and will cover thee with my hand while I pass by:" (Exod. xxxiii. 22.)

And the LORD descended in the cloud, and stood with him there, and proclaimed the Name of the LORD." (xxxiv. 5.) “And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and

uth," (v. 6.) “Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity, and transgression, and sin; and that will by no means clear the guilty ; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation."(v.7.)

No sooner had God assured his servant, that he was a sin-pardoning God, forgiving “all manner of sin," than Moses (understanding the discovery to be one of mere mercy, as Ezekiel, [xviii. 14-17.) alluding to this declaration of God, did, long afterwards,) took advantage of the declaration, in all the ready and fervent eloquence of faith. “ And Moses made haste, and bowed his head toward the earth, and worshipped. (v. 8.) “And he said, if now I have found grace in thy sight, O LORD, let my Lord,* I pray thee, go among us; for” (though] “it is a stiff-necked people; and” (as thou hast said thou wilt,)“ pardon our iniquity and our sin, and take us for thine inheritance.” (v. 9.)

* Let the reader notice this change in the words Lord and Lord, of which an explanation will be given hereafter.

The Person, here styled “my Lord,” whom Moses entreated “the LORD" to send with them, as his representative, was the Messiah, the Logos, or Word; who, though not yet incarnate, having been appointed to that office, in the councils of eternity, (Micah, v. 2.) before the worlds were made, had, ever since the fall of Adam, (Gen. iii. 8.) walked and talked with man; appearing in angelo-human form, “ face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend;" for, his “ delights were with the sons of men." (Prov. viii. 31.) He is called, by the LORD, “an Angel," Exod. xxiii. 20; xxxiii. 2 ; "mine Angel," xxiii. 23; xxxii. 34.

“my presence," xxxiii. 14. (which two titles Isaiah [lxiii. 9.] unites in one, “the Angel of his presence,”) also, “ the Angel of God,” Exod. xiv. 19. “the LORD,” xiii. 21; xiv. 24,25; xl. 38. and “my fear,” xxiii. 27; (a title of God, which Jacob used, Gen. xxxii. 42, 53.) Of this Divine Personage, (Ocòc áoapkos, or, “God not yet manifested in the flesh,”') the Lord said to Moses, “ Behold, I send an Angel before thee, to keep thee in the way ;” (as this same uncreated Angel, or rather, Lord of Angels, [or, as he is called, “the Angel of the Lord," and “the Angel Jehovah,"] had kept Jacob, Gen. xlviii. 16.) “and to bring thee into the place which I have prepared. Beware of him, and obey his voice: provoke him not, for, he will not pardon your transgressions;” (i. e., say the marginal references, given on this verse, [Exodus, xxxii. 34. Numbers, xiv. 35,] “will visit your sin upon you,” and “


in the


wilderness,") "for, my Name is in him,"Exod. xxii. 21. And the acts, which were done by Him, who, before all worlds, was in the Father, with the Father, and, together with the Holy Spirit, one with the Father, are said, by the same writer, yea by God himself, to have been done by“ the LORD," and by“ the LORD God," Ex. xiii. 21; xiv. 24, 25; xl. 38. Num. X. 34-36; xiv. 14. Deut. i. 30-33. Such is the dignity of him, who is both God and Man: a babe at Bethlehem,” and “ the ancient of days :” “ a man of sorrows,” and “God over all”!

But, to return from this pleasing digression, (which a desire to exhibit the Lord Jesus, in one of his glorious characters, was too strong a temptation to withstand) we cannot fail to observe, that the revelation, which Moses desired of God's “glory,and which God here makes of “his way unto Moses," and the “ proclamation of his great and glorious Name,” is said to be gracious ;” and it is moreover evident, from the mention of the "place" of the discovery—a rock-(1 Cor. x. 4.) that it is meant to be of “ God in Christ;” and is further declared to be equivalent to those three words, all my goodness :"'* (Exodus, xxxiii. 20.) in other words, the attribute, here exhibited, is that of “boundless and tender mercy;" which is as much above our thoughts, as God's “goodness” is beyond our deserts.

Now, let any one look at this part of the character of God, as given by himself to Moses; and here, in our English version, misrendered, “by no means clearing

God, who is Goodness itself, may use this term ; but, is our exclamation, “My goodness!” correct? not to add, that such expressions are but little short of oaths.

the guilty ;” and then ask, if such a drawback upon mercy, such an exception in an amnesty, as“not clearing the guilty," (which all men are, Romans, ii. 19. James, ii. 10.) be in accordance, 1. with God's assurance to Moses, that he had “ found

grace in his sight:" 2. with God's promise to make “his goodness," yea,

all his goodness," pass before him: 3. with his promise to “be gracious to whom he would

be gracious, and to show mercy on whom he would

shew mercy:

4. with his revealing himself as “God in Christ,” in

whom “God is love :" (1 John, iv. 8, 9. :) 5. with the “merciful and gracious” features in the

divine character, which precede and follow this

chilling, forbidding, and harrowing, attribute: 6, with the advantage which Moses “made haste," and

took of this revelation, to beseech God to “ pardon

the iniquity and the sin" of his “stiff-necked people:" 7. with the use which Moses made of God's most gra

cious declaration; (which will immediately invite our

attention;) and, above all, 8. with the success, with which he pleaded God's “merci

ful and gracious" description of himself, in the passage now under consideration, (i.e. Numb. xiv. 1719.) contained in these cheering and reviving words, “ I have pardoned, according to thy word.” v. 20.

The “ use," which Moses subsequently made of this “merciful and gracious" display, was this:

In the Book of Numbers, ch. xiv. vv. 1-16, after

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