« 上一页继续 »
The certainty of it rests upon the best foundation;
If we look back to the period of the Babylonian captivity, we shall find reason to conclude, thạt during the whole of the time that captivity lasted, there was a remnant which continued to hold the possession, The seed were not ejected. Let us, to convince ourselves of this, here recal into view the passage in the 6th chapter of Isaiah. “Go and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understsnd not ; and see ye indeed, but perceive not. Make the heart of this people fąt, and make their cars heavy, and shut their eyes, lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and up derstand with their heart, and convert, and be healed. Then said I, O Lord, how long? And he answered, Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the land be uterly desolate. . And the Lord have removed men far away, and there be a great forsaking in the midst of the land. But yet, in it shall be a tenth, and it shall return, and shall be eaten, as a teil tree, and as an oak, whose substance is in them, when they cast their leaves ; so the holy seed shall be the substance thereof." This passage, though somewhat obscure, is clearly in favour of the idea to prove which it is produced. . The words, in it, must refer to the land, which was to be desolated. And the words a tenth, must refer to a favored remnant. The clo
stanice is clearly The words ted. And
ing words of the verse are clearly in favor of this conia struction. The words, and shall be eaten, are apparently against it, and must be a bad translation. Surely the remnant are not to be spared merely for destruction. Poole and Vitringa give different expositions of this clause. They are both in favor of the passive rendering. But, according to Vitringa, several learned critics render it actively. An active rendering, i. e.. that they should return to eat or waste away their ene. mies, seems to be necessary to make it agree with the rest of the verse, the context, and the scheme of the Bible. But however this clause is to be rendered, and whatever be the meaning of it, the residue of the verse is decidedly in favor of the continuance of a part of Judah in the land. They are compared to a tree, whose foliage is gone. The tree itself remains, keeps its place in the earth, lives, and thrives.
If we recur to the history, we find it said, If Kings, xxv. 12. “But the captain of the guard, left of the poor of the land for vinedressers and for husbandmen." These would be more probably inheritors of the blesa sing than their richer neighbors. For God hath cho. sen the poor of this world. : The same thing is intimated in Nehemiah, i. 3. 6And they said unto me, The remnant that are left of the captivity there in the Province, are in great affliction, and reproach; the wall also of Jerusalem is broken down, and the gates thereof are burned with fire." There is then no evidence of an entire ejection during this captivity. The evidence is against it. Some were left when the captivity began ; and when it closes, some are still found in the land.
The present dispersion of the unbelieving Jews resembles that captivity. Analogy would lead us to presume, that a part at least of the remnant, whose history we have traced as far as the scripture would carry us, remained within the limits of the land of Ca. naan, and that their descendants have continued to occupy it to the present day,
I find little in Dr. Mosheim's History, which is exi - plicit and demonstrative on this subject. But there are several passages which imply, that this has been the fact. In his history of the second Century he tells us, Vol. I, page 159 ; ? But it was not from the Romans alone, that the disciples of Christ were to feel oppresa sion. Barchochebas, the fictitious king of the Jews, whom Adrian afterwards defeated, vented against them all his fury; because they refused to join his standards, and second his rebellion. This remark will surely ápply to 110 disciples of Christ but such as were of Jewish descent, and lived in Palestine. In the II. Vol. of his history, page 24, the following passage is found. "It was much about this time, that Jevenal, bishop of Jerusalem, or rather of lia, * attempted to withdraw himself and his church from the jurisdiction of the Bishop of Cesarea, and aspired after a place among the first Prelates of the Christian world. The high degree of veneration, and es. teem, in which the church of Jerusalem was held, among all Christian Societies (on account of its rank among the apostolical churches, and its title to the appellation of the Mother Church, as having succeeded the first Christian Assembly founded by the appostles) was extremely favorable to the ambition of Juvenal, and rendered his project much more prácticable than it would otherways have been." Mactaine, his translator, subjoins the following observation in a note. 6 After the destruction of Jerusalem, the face of Palestine was almost totally changed; and it was so parcelled out, and wasted by a succession of wars, and invasions, that it préserved scarcely any traces of its former condition. Under the Christian Emperors there were three Palestines formed out of the ancient country of that name, cach of which was an episcopal see. And it was over these three dioceses that Juvenal usurped and maintained the jurisdiction." Surely these accounts imply, that there were at this time many Christians of Jewish descent inhabiting the land of Canaan. In the 157 page of this Vol. where Mosheim is speaking of the events which happened in
* The city was generally called @lia, at that time.
proje able to the ambity the appostleshe
the seventh century, he remarks thus ; " In the eastern Countries, and particularly in Syria and Palestine the Jews at certain times, attacked the Christians with mér, ciless fury.” There were then at this time also many Christians in this land. He mentions Comas, as a bishop of Jerusalem, in the eighth century, who acquired considerable reputation for sacred poetry. The op: pressions which the Christians in Palestine suffered from the Saracens, constituted the reason, or the prin: cipal motiye, which was holden forth to Christendom for the crusades. • And modern travellers tell us, that there are now a considerable number of Christians in that country. Some of them may be sincere believers.
But let us allow that the seed of Abraham are completely ejected. Then the promise must be interpreted as general and final. It is a fact, thạt from the time that Jacob went down into Egypt to the passage of Jordan under the conduct of Joshua, the seed of Abra. ham had not actual possession of the land. If this be reconcileable with the execution of the promise, as all concede that it is, then the present dispersion may be reconcileable with it, though involving a complete ejection of longer continuance,
When the Jews were restored to the land of Cana. an from their seventy years captivity in Babylon, they were undoubtedly restored in execution of covenant promise. Should this land be again put into possession of Abraham's descendants, now dispersed among the nations ; be holden by them exclusively, finally, and under circumstances of greater glory than has yet been experienced ; it will be allowed by those who witness this event, that the promise has in no article failed. If there be evidence in the scripture that this is designed, we ought to look upon it as though it were a reality. And this evidence ought to be received as obviating the objection. It shall be our object therefore now, to prove, that this event is to take place.
The preceding events, the time, the manner, the at. tending circumstances, and the consequences; their na
1. There are severad in the historbraham's call head
ture, extent, and duration ; cannot, consistently with the limits we have prescribed to ourselves, be here ex. plained. These subjects are indeed of the most interesting concern, and fall perfectly within the plan of the present work. But the discussion would lead to deep and extensive research ; and if pursued, it must be done in a supplementary volume...
At present it will be sufficient to furnish proof that a restoration is to take place. 1. There are several things in the transactions of God with Abraham, and in the history of the patriarchs; which 'imply such an event. Abraham's call had immediate, and express respect to the land of Ca: naan. The land was promised, not to his seed on ly, but to him personally. Genesis xiii. 15.-“ For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed forever.” 17th verse. “Arise walk through the land in the length of it, and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee.” The words have express respect, not only to his seed, but to him personally. Abraham himself was to inherit it. : A mir: acle was wrought to assure him of it. See the 15th chapter. In the 17th chapter, 8ih verse, it is promised to him distinctly, and secured to him as an everlasting possession. Yet it is remarked, and evidently remarked with design, by the Martyr Stephen, Acts vii.."And he gave him none inheritance in it; no, not so much as to set his foot on ; yet he promised that he would give it to him for a possession, and to his seed after him, when as yet he had no child.” Agreeably to this it is remarked in the eleventh of Hebrews, that Abraham went into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance; and that he sojourned in the land of promise as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles, with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise.” This idea is suggested also in Exodus vi. 4. 5. And I have also established my covenant with them, (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob) to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage ; wherein they were strangers. These passages unitedly inform us