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LECT. the offerings of the law, and fulfilling the
facrifice and figurative resurrection of Ifaac.
* A learned Dignitary of this Church, who is mighty in
the sufferings and demonstrate the verity LECT. of the mission of Jesus Christ, that none could refft the wisdom and the spirit with which he spake *. And at length, in his speech before the high priest at his trial, we have the method and substance of his reasoning: of which I am now to make my use, so far as it relates to the present part of our subject. The design of this discourse, and the drift of the argument may be collected by comparing some parsages of it together.
Having reminded the Jews, in the first place, t that the promises of God, and the hopes of the fathers, did not rest in a temporal or worldly inheritance, as they had falsely Aattered themselves; he lays down the histories of Jofeph and Mofes, with the persecutions they underwent from their people, and the interposition of God for their exaltation : and then, to shew his meaning in all this, he makes the following application, for the conviction of his
* See Acts chap. vi, 7. of See the beginning of the 7th chapter of the Assa P3
LICT. hearers, who had been the persecutors of
Jesus Christ. “ Ye stiff necked, and un6 circumcised in heart and ears (who from “ your disobedience are not able to hear " and understand what the law has declar“ ed te you) ye do always resist the Holy “ Ghoft: as your fathers did, fo do ye. “ Which of the prophets have not your , “ fathers persecuted? And they have “ Nain them which shewed before of the “ coming of the Just one, of whom ye “ have been now the betrayers and mur. “ derers.”* This application shews with what design he had reminded them of the reception which Joseph and Moses, those two eminent characters of the law, had met with. He meant to fhèw them, that as these favourites of heaven, whom God had commissioned to be the Saviours of their people, were opposed and persecuted; so had they now, in like form and manner, opposed and persecuted the Just one Jesus Christ; and in so doing had fulfilled the fcripture, and done all that was wanting to confirm the truth of his divine mission; * Acts vii, 51.
inasmuch as none could be the true Saviour, LECT. according to the scriptures, but a person e rejected by them, as these holy prophets had been rejected by their forefathers.
Such is the purport of St. Stephen's
* See Gen. xxxvii, 26.
LECT: Joseph, that some profit might be made of
him was Judah, who answers even in his name to the traitor that sold Jesus Christ : but the guilt which attends his name extends to the whole nation of the Jews, of whom Judah among the twelve patriarchs, and Judas among the twelve apostles, were the representatives. Envy was the motive on which the patriarchs fold Joseph; and Christ was accused and condemned on the fame principle, according to the opinion of his judge; of whom two of the evangelists relate, that Pilate knew the chief priests had delivered him for envy. When Joseph declared his dreams which signified his future superiority over his whole family; his brethren hated him yet the more for his dreams and for his words; and persuaded themselves they should prevent his advancement by selling him for a slave : but this was the circumstance without which his advancement could not have happened: he had never been a ruler and a prince, if he had not been sent into Egypt as a flave, and to prison as a malefactor. So when Christ asserted his own dignity, his