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heaven, when the watchman upon the walls were left to exchange the sad and disheartening cry, "Watchman, what of the night?" there was as remarkable a deficit in the treasury of the Lord. This is the most interesting aspect in which we can look upon our revivals of religion-they will be felt in the uttermost parts of the earth, as surely as the pulsation of the heart extends through all the limbs. There is no such thing as the church's possessing a distinct and divided interest from any of our race, however re mote. No sooner does that which is of permanent and essential interest to us, rise in importance in our estimation, and christian motive rise to a higher pitch-than the islander of the distant ocean comes in for his share of our prayers and labors, for he is but a part and a property of a christian's soul. Christianity is es sentially missionary in its character. Christians are citizens of the world. Devoted to the amelioration of the whole race, they should adopt as their motto, the noble sentiment of Terence, though in a nobler sense than his,-" I am a man, and whatever concerns man interests me."-There is but one field-the world. There are but two sides i: the universe,—that of God, and satan. The cry is now heard under the whole heaven-Who is on the Lord's side? and whoever he may be, wherever he may dwell, whatever may be his language or complexion, that obeys the call, and passes over to His allegiance, he subtracts one from that rebellious army, which will ere long be left in a fearful minority, and adds one to that "sacramental host of God's elect," which will as speedily triumph. In this great controversy, there is one peculiarity of transcendent encouragement to the friends of God, and a sure presage of approaching defeat to his enemies. From the nature of the case, the only change of parties which can ever occur, is from the wrong to the right side. By nature, all men are on the wrong side. Of course, whatever change takes place, must be from this first universal condition, over to the cause of God. But God has promised to keep all who espouse his cause; not one of them can fail. There can be no such thing as defec tion and desertion on the part of God's friends. So that whenev er an individual in any part of the world, deserts the cause of sin and satan, and chooses the service of his Maker, there is no one to fill his place. He leaves a vacancy, which never will be sup plied. No wonder that these frequent desertions strike the ene mies of the living God, with consternation and disaster. In this day of glorious revivals, they are so numerous, that the mind instinctively adopts the glowing and beautiful language of the prophet

"Who are these that fly as a cloud and as doves to their win dows?" These revivals are the means which will soon decide the relative strength of the friends and foes of the Redeemer-they

will spread from time to time, merging into each other, and finally loosing all distinction of time and place, in that long predicted revival of the millennium, for they will set


as sets the morning star, which goes
Not down behind the darkened west, nor hides
Obscured among the tempests of the sky
But melts away into the light of heaven."

We enter now upon a brief consideration of another obstacle to activity and enterprise in evangelizing the world,-it is a theme which we hope to discuss at large at some future period— the neglect or perversion of the prophecies of scripture concerning the conversion of the world.

When properly understood, these predictions are the chief incentive to every benevolent enterprise. A just and popular arrangement of them, founded on a safe principle of interpretation like that of Hengestenburg, would not only be a great desideratum with every scholar, but would constitute the most inspiriting plea ever penned in behalf of missions. To accommodate to this subject, the elegant language of Dugald Stewart upon a kindred theme; "One thing is certain, that the greatest of all obstacles to the improvement of the world, is that prevailing belief of its improbability which damps the exertions of so many individuals, and that in proportion as the contrary opinion becomes general, it realizes the event which it leads us to anticipate. Surely, if any thing can have a tendency to call forth in the public service the exertions of individuals, it must be an idea of the magnitude of that work in which they are conspiring, and a belief of the permanency of those benefits which they confer on mankind, by any attempt to inform and enlighten them. As in ancient Rome, therefore, it was regarded as the mark of a good citizen never to despair of the fortunes of the republic, so the good citizen of the world, whatever may be the aspect of the times in which he lives, with the prophecies of scripture in his hand, will never despair of the fortunes of the human race, but will act upon the conviction that prejudice, slavery, and corruption must gradually give way to truth, liberty, and virtue; and that in the moral world, as well as in the natural, the further our observations extend, the more we shall perceive of order and of benevolent designs in the uni



Notwithstanding the immense importance of scriptural prophecies, no portion of scripture has been so grossly perverted from proper uses and tendency. Neither is this a matter of necessity, arising from the nature of those prophecies, but of guilt on the part of those who have neglected or abused them. On this subject it becomes us to adopt the language of confession, and say with

Daniel, "we have sinned, and done wickedly, and have not hearkened unto the voice of the prophets."-Öne glance at the manner in which these prophecies have been, and still are regarded by the majority of the church, will demonstrate that our assertions are not groundless, and give full proof that missionary efforts will be suspended, by any perversion of this most important and inspiriting portion of the bible. To one and by far the larger portion of christians, these prophecies are useless, from their being neglected. They are not read at all, because the mystery which envelopes them is construed into a rebuke of all human investigation. Regarding them as emphatically the "deep things of God," which pass all understanding, they shelter themselves from the charge of remissness, under the plea of human ignorance and short-sightedness. To all such, this part of the bible is a dead letter. These predictions are to them, as unmeaning and incoherent as the leaves which the sybil scattered to the wind. They never presume to knock at those close and mysterious recesses, which they confidently believe never were designed for human inspection. If, perchance, their minds should once be kindled into a momentary glow, by those burning images which the Holy Ghost has employed to describe the future glory of the church, they never imagine any possible connection between them and man's humble instrumentality; and thus as they gaze in wonder and inactivity, these prophecies, designed by heaven like lights in the midst of darkness, to guide the church to its duty, pass off to the other side of the firmanent, and form themselves into a distant and brilliant cloud-scenery, as though their sur passing beauty, and solemn grandeur were given merely for man's admiration."Why stand ye gazing thus up into heaven and do not the things which God has commanded?" Recollecting now that all scripture is given for our instruction, and that the prophetical parts are pointed out as objects of our special attention and study-let us ask, to what salutary purpose, are these prophecies made subservient? How many have any thing but confused notions as to their relevancy and importance? Who has not noticed a wide disparity between the common-place duties of religion and the splendid predictions of millennial glory. How are these predictions to be fulfilled? By what agency? How rarely are these predictions made the source of stirring warning, and animating hope from the pulpit. Occasionally, a preacher undertakes to identify a passing event with some prediction of the prophetical system-and draws from their mys terious "chambers of imagery," materials to attract attention and embellish his discourse. If indeed ornament were the only object of the preacher, he would find his noblest materials in those visions

of prophecy in which the Holy Ghost employs and exhausts, so to speak, the whole force and splendor of inspiration. But the stupendous scenery of prophecy was intended for something more than dramatic effect. This therefore, is one way by which the prophecies of scripture are rendered so inefficient. They are not read and understood. They were designed to make men active. and zealous in aiding on the progress of the gospel, which is the power of God unto salvation. They who neglect and undervalue them lose the mighty impulse. No wonder that the "living wheels" of christian benevolence are stayed, when the spirit by which they are to go, is taken away.

To another class who have adopted an erroneous system of interpretation, these prophecies have been worse than useless, by being perverted into a fruitful source of all that is wild and visionary. The fundamental error of their system of exegesis is the presumption, that exact and discernable periods of time are allotted to each predicted event, and that it is their duty to unravel the mystery, by assigning each distinct prediction to its corresponding event in passing history. No national transaction has been overlooked: each passing event has been interwoven as a part of this most solemn and stupendous drama. The rapid succession of great national events, in the age in which we live, has added plausibility to these Protean interpretations. Not a battle has been fought, not a congress of crowned heads convened, not a revolution in national politics, but the seals of prophecy have been broken, and the voice of solemn invitation has been heard, "Come and See."-The French revolution, with its scenes of unparalleled atrocity- the rise, and gathering power, and fate of Napoleon, all brought to naught the predictions of preceding millenarians; and yet the battle of Navarino was no sooner decided, than the sons of the prophets had gone up upon the mountains, to foretell the consequences of the little cloud then gathering in the East. Scriptural prophecies have been marshaled without number as applicable to still more insignificant events, till it has come to pass, that the trump of solemn prophecy, which any angel in heaven would tremble to sound, has been converted by these enthusiasts into a mere newsman's horn. Language cannot be found sufficiently strong, with which to reprobate so gross a perversion of scripture, and especially of that book which is distinguished from every other in the oracles of God, by a fearful woe denounced against such as should presume to alter it in the minutest tittle, and to the perusal of which, as if to distinguish it as an object of special attention and study, is attached an express benediction-blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words

of this prophecy."-It is by no means strange, that amid such discordant interpretations, the most animating representations of the final glory of the church, should have come to be regarded as proverbial expressions, for all that is wild and chimerical: and that with no small class, the millennium is synonymous with every thing that is visionary; since these mistaken men have so often "put christianity in pawn to infidelity, and have not redeemed her at the appointed time." No wonder that the church does not feel the influence of these predictions, urging her onward in her brightening course of duty, and that she sits down in quiet indifference, waiting for the crisis of the nations to be introduced, and vainly expecting that the succeeding events over which she has no control, are predestined to wast her, wave after wave, towards her final glory.

"Sweet is the harp of prophecy-too sweet
Not to be wronged by a mere mortal touch.
Nor can the wonders it records be sung
To meaner music, and not suffer loss."

Though we hope to resume this topic on a future occasion, we shall now state concisely, what we regard as the great error of this system of interpretation. It consists in the assumption that we can always calculate time as applicable to events predicted. In a few instances, to answer particular purposes, disclosures as to time are made. In others, the peculiar form of expression employed, precludes all possibility of understanding it, until the event shall have come to pass. Thus Daniel confesses that he could not comprehend the meaning of the mystical expression from the mouth of the angel, "a tine, times, and a half." How many have striven to make themselves wiser on this point than the prophet himself! As a general thing, time probably did not enter into the minds of the prophets themselves as connected with events; and of course, it is in vain for uninspired men to calculate the times and seasons which are hid from all but that Being with whom a thousand years are but as one day, and one day as a thousand years. This opinion is corroborated by the very nature of the prophetic vision. It was in fact a vision. Things future seemed to be present; just as they were then transpiring before the eye of the prophet. This accounts for the otherwise mysterious connection which may be noticed in the prophetical system, between an event which actually occurred in the time of the prophets, and other events then existing in the distance of futurity. They all formed but one vision-one picture to the eye of the beholder. The mind of the prophet, unconscious of intervening space, glanced from one to another still more remote, while all are so combined as to present but

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