Sidor som bilder




“Their prayers at night consist of the following:— of the fire. Behold his bed, which is Solomon's: First, the reading of the Shema, as already mentioned, threescore valiant men are about it, of the valiant of and repeating the nineteen prayers, as also two bless Israel, they all grasp the sword, being expert in war; ings or praises before the Shema, and two after it. The every man hath his sword upon his thigh because of fear time for repeating the Shema is from the period the in the night.' stars appear till twelve o'clock.

“After this, they repeat the four following ejacula“Beside these, there are three forms of prayers for the tions three times: The Lord bless thee and guard common days of the year, but on the sabbaths, new | thee! the Lord make his face to shine upon thee, and be moons, and other festivals, there are four; the fourth is gracious unto thee! the Lord lift up the light of his called the Musoph, or the addition, because it was insti countenance upon thee, and give thee peace! tuted in lieu of the additional sacrifice of those festivals, | ““Behold he that guardeth Israel doth neither slumber all of which are particularly specified in Numbers 29. 1, nor sleep! which additional sacrifices were offered immediately “For thy salvation have I waited, O Lord! I have after the morning sacrifice; and for that reason the waited, O Lord, for thy salvation. O Lord, for thy salprayer of Musoph is said directly after the morning vation have I waited. prayer.

“In the name of the Lord God of Israel, on my “Besides the above-mentioned stated times of prayer, right hand Michael, and on my left Gabriel; before me immediately preceding going to bed, each Jew ought Oureal, and behind me Raphael, and at my head is the to say the following: ‘Blessed art thou, O Lord, Our glory of the Almighty. God, king of the Universe! who makest sleep to fall “ Afterwards they say a psalm. They then repeat on mine eyes, and slumbering on my eyelids; let it be three times, 'Tremble and sin not; examine your own thy will, O Lord, my God, and the God of my fathers, to hearts upon your bed, and lie still. Selah. They then lay me down in peace, and to make me rise again in say the following, which ends the prayer before going to peace; and let me not be affrighted by my thoughts, bed: “The Lord of the world, who reigned before any bad dreams, or evil imaginations; and let my bed stand creature was created, at the time when all by his will in peace before thee; and awaken mine eyes, lest I was made, and after everything ends, alone he will reign sleep to death. Blessed art thou, O Lord! who doth tremendous; he hath been, he is, and will be with glory. enlighten the universe with his glory.

He is the only one, and there is no second to compare or “They then say the first portion of the Shema, and be associated with him. He is without any beginning the last verse of the 90th Psalm, and the whole of the and without end, and to him is the power and sore91st. They then say from the beginning of the second reignty. He is my God and my living Redeemer, and verse of the 3rd Psalm to the end of the same; after the strong rock of my support in the time of trouble. which they say as follows: 'O Lord our God! make us He is my shelter, my refuge, the portion of my cup in lie down in peace; and make us so rise, O our King, to the day I call. Into his hands do I commit my spirit, life, and spread over us the tabernacle of thy peace. when I sleep, and when I awake, and with my spirit Inspire us with good counsel from before thee, and save and my body. The Lord is with me, and I will not us for thy name's sake. Do thou protect us and remove fear.' from us foes, pestilence, sword, hunger, and troubles ; ! “In addition to these prayers, which have their stated and remove Satan from before and behind us, and in the times of being repeated, the Jews have others to be said shadow of thy wings shalt thou hide us; for God our on various occasions; for it is a maxim among them that keeper and preserver art thou; for an Almighty, favour- it is not fit that man should receive any benefit or use able, and compassionate King art thou; and preserve us from anything without giving due thanks to the Almighty, in our going forth, and in our coming in, with life and who created that thing for his use and benefit; and peace henceforward. Blessed is the Lord by day, and therefore, if they but drink a draught of water, they are blessed is the Lord by night. Blessed is the Lord when obliged to say a grace before it." we lie down, and blessed is the Lord at our rising up; Various particulars respecting forms of prayer will be for in thy hands are the souls of all the living, and the found under the article LITURGY. spirit of all human creatures. Into thy hands do I commit my spirit; thou hast redeemed me, 0 Almighty true God! our God, who art in heaven; confirm thy PREACHER, PREACHING. The word op kingdom perpetually, and reign over us for ever. Let kohelelh, (Eccles. 1. 1;) in the Septuagint, erkamolacour eyes behold and our hearts rejoice. Let our soulsons; in the Vulgate Ecclesiastes, signifies a preacher, or be glad in thy true salvation, when it will be said unto a speaker before an assembly, or one who discourses pubZion, Your God reigneth, the Lord doth reign, the Lord licly on religious subjects. hath reigned, and the Lord will reign for evermore! This practice, so laudable, and so naturally suggesting For the kingdom is thine; and for ever to all eternity itself to a mind duly sensible of the relation between thou wilt reign in glory, for there is not unto us any the creature and the Creator, is, as might be supposed, of king but thee.

the very remotest origin. From the sacred records we 6. The angel which redeemed me from all evil, bless | learn that when men began to associate for the purpose the children, and let my name be named on them, and of worshipping the Deity, Enoch prophesied or preached. the name of my fathers, Abraham, and Isaac, and let (Jude 14,15.) We have a very short account of this them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth. prophet and his doctrine; enough, however, to convince And he said, If thou wilt diligently hearken unto the us that he taught the principal truths of natural and voice of the Lord, thy God, and wilt do that which is revealed religion. Conviction of sin was in his right in his sight, and wilt give ear unto his com- | trine, and communion with God was exemplified in mandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of conduct. (Gen. 5. 24; Heb. 11. 5,6.) From the days those diseases upon thee which I brought upon the of Enoch to the time of Moses, each patriarch wors Egyptians, for I am the Lord that healeth thee.

ped God with his family; probably several assembled at “And the Lord said unto Satan, The Lord rebuke

new moons, and alternately instructed the whole come thee, O Satan, even the Lord that bath chosen Jeru

natn chosen Jeru- | pany. Noah, it is said, was a preacher of righteoustics salem rebuke thee. Verily this is a brand plucked out (2Pet. 2. 5.) Abraham commanded his housebold

[blocks in formation]

him to keep the way of the Lord, and to do justice and to affect to be good, crowded the courts of princes. judgment, (Gen. 18. 19;) and Jacob, when his house Jezebel, an idolatress, had four hundred prophets of lapsed into idolatry, remonstrated against it, and ex- Baal ; and Ahab, a pretended worshipper of Jehovah, horted them, and all that were with him, to put away had as many pretended prophets. (2Chron. 18. 5.) strange gods, and to go up with him to Bethel.

“When the Jews were carried captive into Babylon, Moses was a most eminent prophet and preacher, the prophets who were with them inculcated the prinraised up by God; and by whom it is said came the Law. ciples of religion, and endeavoured to impress their (John 1. 17.) How he and Aaron preached we may see minds with an aversion to idolatry; and to the success by sereral parts of his writings. His first discourse was of their preaching we may attribute the reconversion heard with profound reverence and attention; his last of the Jews to the belief and worship of one God; a was both uttered and received with great solemnity. conversion that remains to this day. The Jews have (Exod. 4. 31; Deut. 33.)

since fallen into fearful crimes, but they have never “Public preaching does not appear, under the Mosaic since this period lapsed into idolatry. There were not economy, to have been attached to the priesthood; wanting, however, multitudes of false prophets among priests were not officially preachers; and we have them, whose characters are strikingly delineated by the numerous instances of discourses delivered in religious true prophets, as may be seen in the thirteenth chapter assemblies, by men of other tribes besides that of Levi. of Ezekiel, the fifty-sixth of Isaiah, and the twenty(Psalm 68. 11.) Thus Joshua was an Ephraimite; but third of Jeremiah. being full of the spirit of wisdom, he gathered the tribes “When the seventy years of the Captivity were expired, to Shechem, and held a discourse to the people of God. the good prophets and preachers, Zerubbabel, Jeshua, (Deut. 34. 9.) Solomon was a prince of the house of Haggai, and others, having confidence in the word of Judah, Amos a herdsman of Tekoa; yet both were God, and aspiring after their natural, civil, and religious preachers, and one, at least, was a prophet. (1 Kings ch. 2; rights, endeavoured by all means to extricate themselves Amos 7. 14,15.) When the notions of pagans, the and their countrymen from that mortifying state into vices of their practice, and the idolatry of their pre- which the crimes of their ancestors had brought them. tended worship, were in some unhappy periods incorpo They wept, fasted, prayed, preached, and prophesied, rated into the Jewish religion, by the princes of their and at length prevailed. The chief instruments were nation, the prophets and all the seers protested against Nehemiah and Ezra. The first was governor, and this apostasy, and they were persecuted for so doing. reformed their civil state; the last was a scribe of the Shemaiali preached to Rehoboam, the princes, and all Law, and addressed himself to ecclesiastical matters, in the people at Jerusalem, (2Chron. 12. 5;) Azariah and which he rendered the noblest service to his country and Hanani preached to Asa and his army, (2Chron. 15. 1, to all posterity. He collected and collated manuscripts &c.; 16. 7;) Micaiah, to Ahab. Some of them opened of the sacred writings, and arranged and published the schools, or houses of instruction, and there to their dis holy canon in its present form. To this he added a ciples they taught the pure religion of Moses. At second work as necessary to the former; he revived and Naioth, in the suburbs of Ramah, there was one where new-modelled public preaching, and exemplified his Samuel dwelt; there was another at Jericho, and a third plans in his own person. The Jews had almost lost in at Bethel, to which Elijah and Elisha often resorted. the seventy years' Captivity their original language; that Thither the people went on Sabbath days, and at new was now become dead; and they spoke a jargon made moons, and received public lessons of piety and morality. | up of their own language and that of the Chaldæans (1Sam. 19. 8; 2Kings 2. 3,5; 4. 2,3.) Through all this and other nations with whom they had been confounded. period there was sometimes no open vision, and the Formerly preachers had only explained subjects; now word of the Lord was precious; the people heard it only they were obliged to explain words; words in the sacred now and then. At other times they were left without a code, which were become obsolete, equivocal, or dead. teaching priest, and without the Law. And at other Houses were now opened, not for ceremonial worship, seasons again, itinerants, both princes, priests, and as sacrificing, for this was confined to the Temple; but Levites, were sent through all the country to carry the for moral obedience, praying, preaching, reading the Law, Book of the Law, and to teach in the cities. Preaching Divine worship, and social duties. These houses were therefore flourished when pure religion grew; and when called synagogues; the people repaired thither morning the last decayed, the first was suppressed. Moses had and evening for prayer; and on Sabbaths and festivals not appropriated preaching to any order of men; per- the Law was read and expounded to them. We have a sons, places, times, and modes were all left open and dis- short but beautiful description of Ezra's first preaching. cretional. Many of the discourses were preached in (Nehem. 8.) Upwards of fifty thousand people assemcamps and courts, in streets, schools, cities, and villages, bled in a street, or large square, near the Water-gate. sometimes with great composure and coolness, at others It was early in the morning of a Sabbath day, a pulpit with vehement action and rapturous energy; sometimes of wood, in the fashion of a small tower, was placed in a plain, blunt style, at other times in all the magnifi- there on purpose for the preacher; and this turret was cent pomp of Eastern allegory. On some occasions, the supported by a scaffold, or temporary gallery, where, in preachers appeared in public with visible signs, with a wing on the right hand of the pulpit, sat six of the implements of war, yokes of slavery, or something principal preachers; and in another on the left, seven; adapted to their subject. They gave lectures on these, thirteen other principal teachers, and many Levites, were held' them up to view, girded them on, brake them in present also on scaffolds erected for the purpose, alterpieces, rent their garments, rolled in the dust, and nately to officiate. When Ezra ascended the pulpit, he endeavoured by all the methods they could devise, produced and opened the Book of the Law, and the whole agreeably to the customs of their country, to impress the congregation instantly rose up from their seats and minds of their auditors with the nature and importance stood. Then he offered up prayer and praises to God, of their doctrines. These men were highly esteemed by | the people bowing their heads, and worshipping the Lord the pious part of the nation; and princes thought proper | with their faces to the ground; and at the close of the to keep seers and others, who were scribes, who read prayer, with uplifted hands, they solemnly pronounced and expounded the Law. (2Chron. 34. 29,30; 35. 15.) | Amen, Amen. Then, all standing, Ezra, assisted at Hence false prophets, bad men who found it worth while times by the Levites, read the Law distinctly, gave the 1078


sense, and caused them to understand the reading. The | rally both preached and heard standing; but sometimes sermons delivered so affected the hearers, that they wept both speaker and auditors sat, especially the aged and excessively, and about noon the sorrow became so exu- | infirm. The Fathers were fond of allegory, for Origen berant and immeasurable, that it was thought necessary | had set them the example. Before preaching the by the governor, the preacher, and the Levites, to re preacher usually went into a vestry to pray, and afterstrain it. 'Go your way, said they, 'eat the fat, drink wards to speak to such as came to salute him. He the sweet, send portions unto them for whom nothing is prayed with his eyes shut, in the pulpit. The first prepared.' The wise and benevolent sentiments of these words the preacher uttered to the people, when he holy men were imbibed by the whole congregation, and ascended the pulpit, were, 'Peace be with you, or, fifty thousand troubled hearts were calmed in a moment. The love of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the grace of God,

“Hence they returned, to eat, to drink, to send portions, and the fellowship of the Holy Ghost, be with you all; and to make mirth, because they had understood the ' to which the assembly first added, 'Amen,' and in afterwords that were declared unto them. From this period times, they answered, “And with thy spirit.' Degeto that of the appearance of Jesus Christ, public preach nerate, however, as those days were in comparison with ing was universal; synagogues were multiplied, vast those of the Apostles, yet they were golden ages in numbers attended, and elders and rulers were appointed comparison with the times that followed, when metafor the purpose of order and instruction.

physical reasonings, mystical divinity, Aristotelian cate“ The most celebrated preacher that arose before the gories, and the reading the lives of saints, were substiappearance of Jesus Christ was John the Baptist. He tuted in the place of sermons. The pulpit at length was commissioned from heaven to be the harbinger of became a stage, where ludicrous priests obtained the the Messiah. He took Elijah for his model; and as the laugh of the vulgar by the lowest kind of wit, especially times were very much like those in which that prophet at the festivals of Christmas and Easter. lived, he chose a doctrine and a method very much | “The Reformation, the offspring of preaching, reresembling those of that distinguished prophet. His stored it to its more than pristine vigour, accompanied subjects were few, plain, and important. His style was by the desire of the common people to read the Scripvehement, his images bold, his deportment solemn, his tures and to hear them expounded." Claude's Essay, actions cager, and his morals strict; but this bright

strict; but this bright edited by Robinson. morning-star gave way to the illustrious sun of righteousness, who now arose on a benighted world. Jesus Christ was certainly the prince of preachers. Who can I PREDESTINATION. The word Predestination but admire the simplicity and majesty of his style, the is of Latin original, and signifies to deliberate beforebeauty of his images, the alternate softness and severity hand with oneself how one shall act, and, in conseof his address, the choice of his subjects, the graceful quence of such deliberation, to form a settled plan, or ness of his deportment, and the indefatigableness of his predetermine where, when, how, and by whom anything zeal? Let the reader charm and solace himself in the shall be done, and to what end it shall be done. So the study and contemplation of the character, excellency, Greek word nipoopuśw, which exactly answers to the and dignity of this best of preachers, as he will find English word Predestinate, and is rendered by it, (Acts them delincated by the Evangelists.

4. 28; Rom. 8. 29,30; 1Cor. 2. 7; Ephes. 1. 5,11,) sig“The Apostles copied their Divine Master. They nifies to resolve what shall be done, and before the formed multitudes of religious societies, and were abun- thing resolved on is actually effected, to appoint it to dantly successful in their labours. They confined their some certain use, and direct it to some determinate end. attention to religion, and left the schools to dispute, and The term Predestination is used in Church history politicians to intrigue. The doctrines they preached especially to denote the doctrine of the election and they supported entirely by evidence; and neither had reprobation of certain individuals of the human race; a nor required such assistance as human laws or worldly doctrine which has given rise to much controversy, but policy, the eloquence of the schools, or the terror of is clearly and satisfactorily stated in the Seventeenth arms, could afford them.

Article of our Church, which reads thus: “ The next five centuries produced many pious and “ Predestination to life is the everlasting purpose of excellent preachers both in the Latin and Greek God, whereby (before the foundations of the world were churches, though the doctrine continued to degenerate. laid) He hath constantly decreed by his counsel, secret The Greek pulpit was adorned with some eloquent ora- to us, to deliver from curse and damnation those whom tors. Basil, bishop of Cæsarea, John Chrysostom, He hath chosen in Christ out of mankind, and to bring preacher at Antioch, and afterwards patriarch (as he was them by Christ to everlasting salvation, as vessels made called) of Constantinople, and Gregory Nazianzen, who | made to honour. Wherefore they which be endued all flourished in the fourth century. Jerome and with so excellent a benefit of God be called according to Augustine were eminent in the Latin church. For God's purpose by his Spirit working in due season: they some time preaching was common to bishops, elders, through grace obey the calling: they be justified freely: deacons, and private brethren, in the primitive Church; they be made sons of God by adoption: they be made in process of time it was restrained to the bishop, and like the image of his only-begotten Son Jesus Christ: to such as he should appoint. When a bishop or they walk religiously in good works, and at length, by preacher travelled, he claimed no authority to exercise God's mercy, they attain to everlasting felicity. the duties of his function, unless invited by the churches | “ As the godly consideration of predestination, and our where he attended public worship. The first preachers election in Christ, is full of sweet, pleasant, and unspeakdiffered much in pulpit action; the greater part used very | able comfort to godly persons, and such as feel in themmoderate and sober gesture. They delivered their sermons selves the working of the Spirit of Christ, mortifying the extempore, while there were notaries who took down what works of the flesh, and their earthly members, and they said. Sermons in those days were all in the vulgar drawing up their mind to high and heavenly things; tongue. The Greeks preached in Greek, the Latins in as well because it doth greatly establish and confirm their Latin, They did not preach by the clock (so to speak), faith of eternal salvation to be enjoyed through Christ, but were short or long as they saw occasion, though an as because it doth fervently kindle their love towards hour was about the usual time. Sermons were gene- God: So for curious and carnal persons, lacking the

[blocks in formation]

Spirit of Christ, to have continually before their eyes the | his brother to receive the gifts, if he had found favour sentence of God's predestination, is a most dangerous | in his sight. (Gen. 33. 10.) downfall, whereby the devil doth thrust them either into | “And Esau said, Let me now leave with thee some desperation, or into wretchlessness of most unclean living, of the folk that are with me. And he said, What no less perilous than desperation.

needeth it? Let me find grace in the sight of my lord.' “Furthermore, we must receive God's promises in As Esau had received valuable gifts from his brother, he such wise as they be generally set forth to us in Holy wished to make some present in return; and having Scripture. And in our doings, that will of God is to be received cattle, it would not have looked well to have followed, which we have expressly declared unto us in given the same kind of gift that he had received. He the word of God.”

therefore offered some of his people (who were no doubt The Scriptures abound with passages which at once born in his house) as a kind of recompense for what he prove the doctrine thus stated, particularly Matthew had received, and as a proof of his attachment." 25. 34; Romans 8. 29,30; Ephesians 1.3,6,11; 2Timothy Presents of dresses are alluded to very frequently in 1.9; 2Thessalonians 2. 13; 1 Peter 1. 1,2; John 6. 37; the historical books of Scripture, and in the earliest times; 17. 2-24; Revelation 13. 8.

when Joseph gave to each of his brethren a change of The moral uses of this doctrine of predestination, raiment, and to Benjamin five changes of raiment, it is rightly understood, are, that it hides pride from man; | mentioned without particular notice, and as a customary excludes the idea of chance; exalts the grace of God; incident. (Gen. 45, 22, 23.) Naaman gave to Gehazi, renders salvation certain; and affords believers great from among the presents intended for Elisha, who consolation: it has also been by some sectarists fear- declined accepting any, two changes of raiment, and we fully perverted, but the nature and limits of this work find Solomon received raiment as presents. (2Chron. do not admit of controversial matter, and we must there- | 9. 24.) This custom also is still maintained in the fore refer our readers to other sources for a discussion of East. the question.

“The custom of making presents," says Maillet,“ is principally observed in the frequent visits which they

make one another through the course of the year, which PREPARE, TO, usually signifies to make ready,

are always preceded by presents of fowls, sheep, rice, as Joshua 1. 11; also to fit and qualify, (Rom. 9. 23;)

coffee, and other provisions of different kinds. These to appoint, (Matt. 20. 23;) to direct, establish. (1Chron. visits, which relations and friends make regularly to 29. 18.) God prepares mercy and truth for men when

each other, were in use among the ancient Egyptians; He graciously fulfils his promise and blesses them.

and though they are often made without going out of (Psalm 61. 7.) To prepare the heart, is to mortify its

the same city, yet they never fail of lasting three or four various lusts, and put it into a frame of holy submission

| days, and sometimes eight. They carry all their family to, and constant longing for God. (1Sam. 7.3; 1Chron.

| with them, if they hare any; and the custom is, as I 29. 18.) The preparation of the heart and the answer

have just observed, to send presents beforehand, proporof the tongue are both from the Lord. The arranging tionable to their rank, and the number of their attenand fixing of the thoughts and inclinations of the heart

dants." In other cases, the presents made by Asiatic about civil, and much more about spiritual things, and

kings to eminent personages, are large sums of money the giving ability to speak readily, distinctly, and to

tly, and to or vestments; and sums of money are also presented to edification, are from the Lord, as his free gift and effec- | ambassadors and other strangers of consideration, who tual work. (Prov. 16. 1.)

have brought them presents from other powers. D’ArPRESBYTER. See Bishop; DEACON; ELDER.

vieux tells us, that when he waited on an Arab emir, his

mother and sister, to gratify whose curiosity that visit PRESBYTERY. The term trpeo Buteplov, signi was made, sent him, early in the morning after his arrifying an assembly of aged men, or council of elders, is val in their camp, a present of pastry, honey, and fresh used of the Jewish senate or sanhedrin, (Luke 22. 66; butter, with a basin of sweetmeats of Damascus. Sir Acts 22. 5;) and likewise of the collective body of the John Chardin tells us, in his Travels, of an officer whose elders, presbyters, or priests of the Christian church. business it was to register the presents that were made (1Tim. 4. 14.)

to his master or mistress; and Egmont and Heyman,

speaking of the presents made at the Ottoman court on PRESENT, Inda minchal, (Gen. 22. 13,) a gift account of the circumcision of the Grand Seignor's rendered to testify regard or subjection, or to procure or children, tell us that all these donations, with the time confirm friendship. From the earliest times it has been when, and on what occasion given, were carefully regis. the universal custom in the East to send presents to tered in a book kept for that purpose. This was forsuperiors. No one waits upon an Eastern prince, or any merly the custom in England, France, and other Europerson of distinction, without a present. Modern tra pean countries, upon particular festivals, as the sovevellers frequently refer to this custom of waiting upon reign's birth-day, or New Year's Day; copious lists of great men with presents, unaccompanied with which, offerings to kings and queens, and gifts by them in should a stranger presume to enter their houses, it would | return, being found in the numerous Privy Purse Acbe deemed a gross breach of politeness and respect. counts, Issue Rolls, &c., preserved among the public

It is the custom of the East, when one invites a supe records. rior, to make him a present after the repast, as an acknowledgment of his trouble. Frequently it is done PRESIDENT. The word 770 sarich, (Dan. before it, as it is no augmentation of honour to go to the

6. 2,3,) rendered “president," signifies an overseer, a house of an inferior. They make no presents to equals, superintendent. In the above passages it refers to the or those who are below themselves.

three ministers who were placed over the one hundred Roberts says, “Not to receive a present, is at once to

and twenty governors of the provinces of the Persian show that the thing desired will not be granted. Hence

empire. nothing can be more repulsive, nothing more distressing, than to return the gifts to the giver. Jacob evidently PRESS. See WINE-PRESS. laboured under this impression, and therefore pressed

6 Y 2

[blocks in formation]

PRETORIUM, Tpaitwplov. (Mark 15. 16.) | and changed them every Sabbath-day. Every day, This was the house or palace of the governor of a Roman morning and evening, a priest brought into the sancprovince, wbether a prætor or other officer. In the New | tuary a smoking censer of incense, which he set upon Testament it signifies the palace of Herod, at Jerusalem, the golden table, and which on no account was to be built by him with great magnificence at the north part kindled with strange fire, that is, with any fire but that of the upper city, west of the Temple, which it over | which was taken from the altar of burnt offering. looked, and to which there was also access from the palace (Levit. 10. 1,2.) over the open place called the Xystus, and by a bridge The priests were divided by David into twenty-four across the Tyropæon, or Cheesemongers' Valley. In classes, (1 Chron. 24. 7-18,) which order was retained by this palace the Roman procurators, whose head-quarters Solomon, (2Chron. 8. 14,) and at the reformations of were properly at Cesarea, resided when they visited the Jewish religion by the kings Hezekiah and Josiah. Jerusalem, the tribunal (Bnua) being set up in the | (2Chron. 31. 2; 35. 4,5.) As, however, only four classes open court or area before it. (John 18. 28.) In Mat- | returned from the Babylonish captivity, (Ezra 2. 36-39; thew 27. 27, the term, rendered the common hall,” Nehem. 7. 39-42; 12. 1,) these were again divided into seems to refer to the court or part of the palace where twenty-four classes, each of which was distinguished by the procurator's guards were stationed.

its original appellation. This accounts for the introducPREVENT, TO, is understood, in our translation of

tion of the class or order of Abia, mentioned in Luke

1.5, which we do not find noticed among those who the Scriptures, beside its ordinary sense of, to hinder, as denoting, (1.) To come before one is expected or sought.

returned from the Captivity. One of these classes went

up to Jerusalem every week, to discharge the sacerdotal (Job 30. 27.) (2.) To go before, or be sooner. (Psalm

office, and they succeeded one another on the Sabbath119. 117.) One is happily prevented when distress is

day, till all had attended in their turn. To each order hindered, and favours come unasked, (Job 3. 12; Psalm 18. 18,) or unhappily, when snares and afflictions come

was assigned a president. (1Chron. 24. 6,31; 2Chron. unexpectedly. (2Sam, 22. 6.)

36. 14.) The prince or prefect of each class appointed

an entire family to offer the daily sacrifices; and at the · PREY. See Spoil.

close of the week they all joined together in sacrificing,

and as each family consisted of a great number of priests, PRIDE is inordinate and unreasonable self-esteem,

they drew lots for the different offices which they were attended with insolence and rudeness towards others.

to perform. “ It is sometimes," says a good writer, “confounded

It was by virtue of such lot that the office of burning with vanity, and sometimes with dignity; but to the

incense was assigned to Zacharias, the father of John former passion it has no resemblance, and in many cir

the Baptist, when he went into the temple of the Lord. cumstances it differs from the latter. Vanity is the

(Luke 1. 9.) According to some Jewish writers, there parent of loquacious boasting; and the person subject

were three priests employed in the offering of the incense; to it, if his pretences be admitted, has no inclination to

one, who carried away the ashes left on the altar at the offer insult. The proud man, on the other hand, is

preceding service; another, who brought a pan of naturally silent, and wrapt up in his own importance,

burning coals from the altar of sacrifice, and, having seldom speaks but to make the audience feel their infe

placed it on the golden altar, departed ; a third, who riority. Pride is the high opinion that a poor, little,

went in with the incense, sprinkled it on the burning contracted soul entertains of itself, whilst dignity con

coals, and, while the smoke ascended, made intercession sists in just, great, and uniform actions, and is the

for the people. This was the particular office which fell opposite to meanness." To suppress this sin, we should

by lot to Zacharias; and it was accounted the most consider what punishment it has brought on mankind.

honourable in the whole service. This office could be in the cases of Pharaoh, Haman, Nebuchadnezzar,

| held but once by the same person. Herod, and others; how particularly it is prohibited,

The sacerdotal dignity being confined to certain fami(Prov. 16. 18; 1 Pet. 5. 25; James 4. 26;) what a tor

lies, every one who aspired to it was required to estament it is to its possessor, (Esther 5. 13;) how soon all

blish his descent from those families: on this account, things of a sublunary nature will end; what a barrier

the genealogies of the priests were inscribed in the public it is to our felicity and communion with God; how

registers, and were preserved in the archives of the fruitful it is of discord; and how it precludes our use

Temple. Hence, in order to preserve the purity of the fulness, and renders us really contemptible.

sacerdotal blood, no priest was permitted to marry a harlot or profane woman, or one who had been divorced;

and if any one laboured under any bodily defect, this • PRIEST, 17 cohen, (Gen. 14. 18,) a person set excluded him from serving at the altar. Purity of body apart for the performance of sacrifice, and other offices and sanctity of life were alike indispensable; nor would and ceremonies of religion.

any one undertake the priestly office, in the early period of Before the promulgation of the Law of Moses, the first the Jewish polity, before he had attained the age of thirty born of every family, the fathers, the princes, and the years, or, in later times, thc age of twenty years. Accordkings, were priests. Thus Cain and Abel, Noah, Abra- ing to Maimonides, the priest whose genealogy was defecham, Melchizedek, Isaac, Jacob, Job, offered their own tive in any respect, was clothed in black, and veiled in sacrifices; but among the Israelites, after their departure | black, and sent without the verge of the court of priests; from Egypt, the priesthood was by Divine command | but every one that was found perfect and right was clothed confined to one tribe; and it consisted of three orders, the in white, and went in and ministered with his brethren high-priest, priests, and Levites. The high-priest and the the priests. It is not improbable that St. John refers ordinary priests were chosen from the family of Aaron to this custom of the Jewish Sanhedrin, in Revelation exclusively. They served immediately at the altar, pre- | 3. 5. Those priests whose birth was pure, lived in eer: pared the victims, and offered the sacrifices; they kept up | tain apartments of the Temple, in which was deposited a perpetual fire on the altar of burnt offerings, and also wood for the altar, and were employed in splitting and in the lamps of the golden candlestick in the sanctuary; preparing it, to keep up the sacred fire. No particular they kneaded the loaves of shew-bread, which they ceremony appears to have taken place at the consecrabaked and offered on the golden altar in the sanctuary; tion of the ordinary priests, who were admitted to the

« FöregåendeFortsätt »