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COMPENDIUM OF CORRESPONDENCE.

We receive many communications which, owing to the press of correspondence of a more important character, we have not space to insert entire; and in some instances we doubt if it be intended by the writers, that they should be printed verbatim. We therefore purpose in future (when we have an accumulation of such correspondence, as in the present instance,) to adopt the plan of compressing it, and exhibiting the substance of each communication under the above head.

The Kingdom Of God.
On Matt, xxi, 43.

Our Correspondent Nil observes on the text—" The kingdom of 'God shall be taken from you and 'given to a nation bringing forth 'the fruits thereof"—" What nation has ever yet done this? If none, the gift must be yet future. But yet the kingdom was to be taken from the Jews, therefore they previously possessed it. True, but in what sense? Is it not in a typical sense, in the same manner they possessed the jjromises?" He further considers, that when the kingdom shall be possessed by a nation bringing forth the fruit thereof, it will be antitypical,— the reality not the shadow.*

* We have cancelled tliose arguments of our Correspondent Nil anticipated by Trinitarius in the article "beginning page 150, and which was not published when we received Nil's communication. Reminding the Reader, that it has been shown by Abdiel (pages 29—35) that in whatsoever sense the kingdom may be said to have been taken from the Jews, and (if any will have it so) given to us, that there is still a sense in which it is yet to come j we offer one remark by way of further confirming, or perhaps of extending the view of Nil in regard to what he says concerning the -promises. Some things are said to be taken away, when they are only enjoyed in expectation or by promise: witness the birthright and blessing of Esau, concerning which he accuses Jacob—" he

took away my birthright; and, behold, now he hath taken away my blessing." (Gen. xxvii, 36.) Neither of these were actually possessed by Esau, though said to be taken from him: and thus of that generation of Jews it may be said, that the kingdom promised to them, and "which they thought would immediately appear," is taken from them, and reserved for a nation bringing forth the fruit thereof.

Ed.

The Conversion Of The Gentiles. Inquirer objects to the texts, which at page 118 we have alleged to shew that the heathen will be converted by the Israelitish nation, (viz. Isa. lxvi, 19, and Zech. ii, 11,) that the latter makes no allusion to agents : the former mentions agents, but they are Gentiles and not Jews, being those of the nations who are said to escape the vengeance of the Lord. (Verses 15, 16, 18.) They are the same nations (he observes) described in Ezek. xxxix, 2; Joel hi, 2, 15; Zech. xiv, 2, 3, 16; from among whom a remnant escapes, (viz. a sixth part.) "This remnant '(he adds) will be converted by 'the destruction of their compa'nions in arms and the light of 'the divine glory, and they will re'turn to the countries from whence 'they came, and become mission* aries to the Jews who are not re'stored.—' And I will send those "that escape of them to the na"tions, and they (the escaped of "the nations) shall bring your 319

"brethren (the Jews) for an offer"ing to the Lord out of all na"tions.'" He quotes Isaiah lx, 12, as a further proof that the Gentiles will aid and serve the Jews; and concludes: "After the day of { Pentecost the Gentiles received 'the Gospel from the Jews; but 'at the commencement of the Mil'lennium the Jews will receive the 'Gospel from the Gentiles. The < reasoning of the Apostle is quite 'conclusive: 'For as ye in times "past have not believed God, yet i( have now obtained mercy through "their unbelief; even so have these "also now not believed, that through "your mercy they also may obtain "mercy/ Rom. xi, 30, 31."

We admit that Inquirer's reasoning is forcible, but not conclusive to our own mind. We still doubt if the escaped of Isa. lxvi, 19 be not spoken of those previously idolatrous and perverse Israelites who in "the time of Jacob's trouble" will be pleaded with in the wilderness, and also scourged with the affliction of war. (See Ezek. xx, 33_38 and Zech. xiv, 1, 2.) The nations which will come against Jerusalem appear to be, from the general current of Scripture, the kingdoms and allies of the Roman earth: but those to whom the escaped are sent are Pul, Lud, Javan, &c. who are the present Pagan nations. To make good Inquirer's view, one would expect the words to be—" I will send those that escape of them back to their nations." The phrase e< all flesh" in verse 16 appears sometimes to be greatly limited: See Lukeiii, 6, and Acts ii, 17.

We grant that from Romans xi, 30, 31 the converted Gentiles will be first made instrumental in calling a remnant out from among the Jews, which is even now fulfilling; but

the bulk of the Jews will be converted by the immediate manifestation of him whom they have pierced; (Rom. xi, 26 ;) and then in their turn they are to prove to the world, as life from the dead, {v. 15.) "Salvation is of the Jews" both at the first Gentile calling, and we apprehend also at the second; when again "the word of the Lord shall go from Jerusalem." (Mic. iv, 2, Zech. xiv, 8.)

Ed.

On Matt, x, 23.

A Novice would explain the phrase " till the Son of Man be come" (see page 187) by Matt, xvii, 28, explained by Peter to be the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, -which he witnessed in the holy Mount.

On John Xiv, 2.

The same Correspondent suggests, "that Jesus may now be considered as the nobleman gone into a far country, waiting the termination of the stewardship of his servants before his decision as to their de* serts and capabilities for honor and service in his kingdom ?"*

* This suggestion does not. appear to us to remove the difficulty submitted by Amicus, page 187, as to the sense in which Jesus may be said to be preparing a place during his absence for those servants.

The Third Heaven.

2 Pet. iii, 5—13.

Mikros, in respect to Nil's assertion (page 253) " that he can dis

* cover no passage that instructs us,

* which is the first heaven, which is 'the second, or which is the third;" inquires whether it is not to be clearly inferred from 2 Pet. iii, 5, &c. He thinks "Peter distinguishes 'in verse 5 "the heavens which 'were of old and the earth" "before 'the flood; in the 7 th verse "the 'heavens and the earth which are 'now " and in verse 13 " new hea1 vens and a new earth," after these 'have been dissolved, as described 'verses 7, 10, 12." This third heaven and earth he considers maybe THE THIRD HEAVEN of which

St. Paul was privileged to have a view; as also of Paradise: and he desires it may be noticed that there is a marked distinction in the phraseology in which the Apostle describes himself to have been carried to each place—being caught up (or rather away) E£12 rptrs spars and EIS Tov TrapadeKToy. He finally observes, that Paul could not have had any doubt whether he had been in the body, had he been caught up to the place of the Father's presence; because this Apostle himself declares, "that he dwells in light unto which no man can approach, and whom no man hath seen." 1 Tim. vi, 16. He considers therefore that he saw the glorified saints, such as Enoch, Elijah and those who came out of their graves after our Lord's resurrection,—part of the future inhabitants of the third heaven and earth; and afterwards the disembodied and not yet glorified saints in paradise.*

* We observe in regard to this statement, that the latter part of it is rather destructive of the reasoning which Mikros

deduces from 2 Pet. iii: for he argues that point as if Peter were speaking of the material heavens and earth not yet created, but to be formed out of the dissolution of these : therefore Paul could not have seen this material globe in its actual renovated state, but only as in a vision. Ed.

On Inspiration. Abi-el, expressing his satisfaction at our review of the works of Messrs. Haldane and Carson, favours us with the following concise explanation on the subject of Inspiration, to be found under that word in the late Rev. J. Brown of Haddington's Dictionary of the Bible.— "The inspiration by which God indited his word, was not merely his influencing the minds of the sacred writers, so as to keep them from grosser faults, but his impressing their minds in such a manner, as fully convinced them they were moved of God, and his suggesting to them what they should write, and the very words fit for expressing it. Should we, with some learned men, admit superintendence to preserve from gross errors, and no more, our Bible may be a mass of smaller errors, even in its original languages; and if we admit the writers to have been left to themselves in the choice of their words, for aught we know, they may have every where expressed the just ideas in words very improper. 2 Tim. iii, 16."

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TYPICAL HISTORIES,

No. II,

THE TAKING OF JERICHO.

Another historical occurrence mentioned in the Old Testament, which has struck me as being typical of the period of our Lord's return, is detailed in Joshua, v, 13 to vi, 2. After the children of Israel, under the command of Joshua the son of Nun, had passed through the bed of the river Jordan, by the mighty working of the Lord their God who miraculously made " a way for his ransomed to pass over," we are told they encamped at Gilgal, where the whole congregation was circumcised, and the reproach of Egypt was rolled away from them. "And 'it came to pass when Joshua was 'by Jericho, that he lifted up his 'eyes and looked, and, behold, there 'stood a man over against him with

* his sword drawn in his hand: and c Joshua went unto him, and said 1 unto him, Art thou for us or for 'our adversaries? And he said, 'Nay, but as Captain of the Host of 'the Lord am I now come. And 'Joshua fell on his face to the earth 'and did worship, and said unto

* Him, what saith my Lord unto His

* servant? And the Captain of the

* Lord's host said unto Joshua, c Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; 'for the place whereon thou stand'est is holy. And Joshua did so. '(Now Jericho was straitly shut up, 'because of the children of Israel; 'none went out and none came in.) f And the Lord said unto Joshua,

'See, I have given into thy hand 'Jericho, and the King thereof and 'the mighty men of valour, &c." Then follow particular directions concerning the mode in which Jericho was to be compassed, with a detailed account of the fall of the city at the last sounding of the trumpets a and the shouting of the triumphant Israelites. All its inhabitants were devoted to destruction, except the harlot Rahab and her family, "who perished not with 'them that believed not when she had 'received the spies with peace, "b Rahab it seems (see verse 25) had a perpetual residence in the land of Israel, "because she hid the messen'gers which Joshua sent to spy out 'Jericho."

Bearing in mind the true nature of a typical history I think there will be little difficulty in determining the above short account to be descriptive generally, though not in detail, of the part to be performed by Israel on their return from a worse than Egyptian captivity; when, under the leading of the great Joshua (or Jesus*) they shall enter into the antitypical and everlasting and complete possession of the land, given by promise unto Abraham and to his seed. The time, the persons, and the attendant circumstances, such as the salvation of Rahab and her family, all shew a striking appositeness and typical resemblance to the great and wondrous events, which I believe will soon burst upon the world; though, alas! they are little looked for and less desired. The natural children of Abraham have been so long oppressed, afflicted, degraded and outcast, that any expectation of their rising again to dignity and glory in the scale of nations, is regarded by most as little better than the product of an enthusiastic fancy or an unjustifiable literalizing of Scripture. This sentiment has been encouraged by that method of interpretation so common among commentators, which almost exclusively applies the promises, made to the Church of the latter day, to the Gentiles; forgetting that consistency requires, and that true scriptural criticism will insist upon, an appropriation of the blessing to the same people which, in an undivided prophetic discourse, was threatened with the curse. Origen and his school did much in this way to mystify and obscure many of the plainest and most beautiful passages in holy Writ: and although the writings of bishop Horsley and others have doubtless removed a mass of ignorance and prejudice from the Church; yet it is surprising to observe, how much men are still led away by a system from the simplicity of truth. Our best and most deservedly esteemed commentators (such as Scott, Doddridge and Henry) might be adduced on many points, were it necessary to prove my assertion.

a 1 Cor. xv, 52. b Heb. xi, 31.

* It may be needless to inform the Header that Joshua and Jesus are the same name. Acts vii, 45 and Heb. iv, 8 both relate to Joshua.

Investigator, No. X. 2 R May, 1832.

Selfishness is truly the <( sin which easily besets us:" but we should hardly expect so determined an appropriation to the Gentile Church of what manifestly belongs to restored Israel; (I mean Israel after the flesh;) especially when most of the blessings are of a temporal nature, (though pure and holy in their kind,) and far inferior to the

priestly and regal dignity which shall be the lot of the bride of Christ. To complete this was the object of Jehovah in visiting the Gentiles; so that '' taking out of them a people for his name/' He might add them as living branches to that good olive tree from which the Jews were broken off because of unbelief, and under whose shade the fleshly nations of the coming dispensation shall enjoy protection and repose. We have been liberal enough in leaving to Israel the inheritance of a curse; foi'getting that he who plucked up has promised to plant, who dispersed has promised to restore; and that we sin both against true interpretation, and against our brethren of the seed of Abraham, (through whom, be it ever remembered, Salvation Came To us,) if we refuse to assign to them, in our scriptural inquiries, that portion which they shall assuredly possess in the land of their fathers upon the mountains of Israel.

The words of one highly and deservedly esteemed by the Church would form a good motto to affix to prophetic disquisitions:— "where ifrcan be, the farther from a figurative interpretation the better." We may spiritualize God's word till we make it a riddle without a meaning, or at least till it seems only to be understood by him who has the most poetical and fanciful imagination. I do trust, since the attention given of late to the prophetic Scriptures, that a more truly sober way of explaining the word of God is obtaining among us.—The Lord increase our real knowledge of his truth, that we may enjoy and glorify himself therein! And oh! that amidst the all absorbing politics of these awful times,—when " men's 'hearts are failing them for fear and 'for looking for those things which 'are coming on the earth,"—oh!

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