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the lake of fire burning with brimstone (Rev. xix. 17, 20). These three gatherings also are brought about by the return of our absent Head, the great Shepherd of the sheep, who shall raise his sleeping saints, and translate his living saints, to be for ever with their Lord. He is also the Shepherd of Israel, who, having led Joseph like a flock to the land promised to the fathers, delivering them from the Papal Babylon, shall, when he cometh with his saints, shine forth from between the cherubim, and save from the hosts of antichrist and the confederacy of Gog and Magog (Heb. xiii. 20; Psa. lxxx.; Zech. xiv.; Rev. xix).
The very time for the commencement of that predicted series of events by which these three gatherings are to be accomplished, seems now arrived: we look for the sign of the Son of Man's advent, and the lifting of the standard as an ensign to the people, and the blowing of the great trumpet in the land of Assyria. All the predicted warnings have been given; every immediate precursor of the day of the Lord has appeared; and we wait in solemn suspense for another darkening of the heavens, another shaking of the earth, like to that which announced the exit of our Lord from the land of the living, to announce his return like indeed, but infinitely more terrific; for he now cometh as King of kings and Lord of lords; he now ariseth to shake terribly the earth; he now cometh to "set glory in the land of the living;" to "be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe" in that day; to reign over the house of Israel for ever; and so to confound his enemies, that they shall "call to the mountains and to the rocks to hide them from the face of Him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: for the great day of his wrath shall come, and who shall be able to stand?"
We have from the beginning endeavoured to direct the attention of our readers to this series of events, and the operation of these events upon the three classes, of Believers, Jews, and Apostates or infidels. But we reiterate our warnings, in all the various forms wherein they are given in Scripture; not merely to deepen the impression, but also from a conviction that misapplying to one class, promises or threatenings which belong to another, is a most fruitful source of error; and from the full persuasion that rightly applying them is the only way of giving harmony and exactness to the interpretation of unfulfilled prophecy. And the practical importance of rightly understanding these things is now become paramount: there is no safety without it: we have no other way of detecting and avoiding the delusions which are abroad on the earth. We wage no common warfare, and we need the whole armour of God; and of the prophetic Scriptures it may be said, especially at this time, that
they are "profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works."
There are two opposite mistakes into which we are apt to fall in studying the word of God: we sometimes miss the true meaning by falsely appropriating to ourselves promises meant for other people, and at other times by falsely rejecting warnings meant for ourselves. These mistakes have a wider operation than is generally supposed; the first including that wholesale system of spoliation, by which some persons filch away every promise made to the Jews, by explanations and quibbles and figures so extraordinary, that, if applied to history, such interpretations would deny the very existence of Pharaoh, nullify the deliverance from Egypt, and expunge Jerusalem from our maps; and by the second mistake we shake off from ourselves all the judgments threatened in the Old Testament, to fix them wholly on the literal Babylon, or Egypt, or Tyre, if this can possibly be done; if not, to saddle them on Jew, Turk, Infidel, or Heretic, on any class rather than our own; deeming it perfectly absurd to suppose that professing Christians can fall under these denominations, or that Protestant Christendom can incur judgments direful as those.
The proper consideration of the present state and condition of the Jews, on the one hand, and of Babylon, Egypt, and Tyre, on the other, would rectify these mistakes, and the want of due consideration is the most charitable way of accounting for their prevalence. On a hasty survey of the present state of the Jews, not only degraded outcasts, but for the most part contented to be so; bound together rather by common misery than by common faith; repenting not of the sins which drave them from their land, and caring not for their return ;-thus regarding them, we are apt to imagine that such a people may so continue for ever, unfit recipients of the favour of God, cut off from the promises made to their fathers; which promises are accordingly taken from them and accommodated to the Christian church. And on a hasty survey of the present state of Babylon, Egypt, and Tyre, bearing local marks of the wrath of God as fixed as those impressed upon the Jewish people, we are apt to suppose that these have, in the letter, received all the burdens of woe coupled with their names in Scripture; and that no future judgment awaits Babylon, Egypt, or Tyre, as no future restoration awaits the Jewish people.
The simplest mode of correcting both errors is their juxtaposition. The restoration of Israel is coupled almost always with judgments on these their oppressors; therefore the restoration and the judgments coincide in time. The judgments on Babylon, too, give them for servants to Israel, which has had no fulfilment
in past times, and cannot on any account apply to the Christian church; and these judgments are final, and accompanied with the removal of the heavens and the earth, to make way for the new heavens and new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness. Egypt, again, must be carried down to the same time of the end, for it is made a third with Assyria and Israel in Isai. xix. 24 a Saviour is promised who "shall teach it to know the Lord" (ver. 20), and blessings which it is mere folly to pretend it has ever yet received. Tyrus, too, is manifestly addressed as a true church, and ultimately punished for pride and apostasy; destroyed, in fact, as Tyrus; though promised salvation as the daughter of Tyre, and conversion under the form of Zidon, from whence Tyre had its origin, and into which form its constitution shall again return; after which its merchandise and hire shall be holiness to the Lord." (Isai. xxiii.) We shall prove, by a short appeal to Scripture, that the burdens on Babylon, Egypt, and Tyre, apply to forms of evil in the Christian church, which bring down upon them judgments of the same character at the same time; and we shall appeal to the experience of our readers to decide whether they do not observe such forms of evil prevalent on every hand, that they may take instant warning and separate themselves from these sins, that they partake not of these judg ments. For there is no other escape but a complete separation from the world, and an unreserved dedication of ourselves to the Lord; and without this escape we shall have no part in the first resurrection and translation of the saints, but must abide the great tribulation and the fiery trial about to come upon the earth. We must then brave persecution and martyrdom in the most horrible form, or deny the Lord and be cast by him into the lake of fire, when He shall come to destroy the wicked. The door of grace is open now, and an entrance offered to all, on the easy condition of believing on the Lord Jesus, and taking freely the grace freely offered. But the day of grace is nearly past, and then the day of the Lord will begin; the Master will then have risen and shut-to the door, and those who have not previously entered will knock in vain, for no man shall be able to enter the temple till the plagues of the vials be fulfilled. The day of the Lord, as we have often observed, is a long period, of seven or of fourteen years; during which the vials, which were typically fulfilled at the French Revolution, shall be poured out by the risen saints, and have a literal fulfilment. This whole time is the second advent; for Christ never again withdraws, but, beginning with the reward of his saints, and raising them to the clouds, from whence He has cast Satan down to the earth, He gives them to partake with him in the judgments upon his enemies and theirs; drawing nearer and nearer to this earth, till, coming with all his saints, his feet stand upon the Mount of Olives, all
his enemies are destroyed, and he plants the throne of his Shechinah glory in the temple at Jerusalem, which henceforth is called Jehovah-Shammah; but takes up his personal abode, for ever, in the New Jerusalem, which comes down from heaven, where there is no temple, but the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. And the tabernacle of God is then with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them and be their God.
This expression, "the tabernacle of God," which then shall be with men, is, we have no doubt, introduced to direct our attention to the Feast of Tabernacles, which was the last, the most solemn, and the most joyful of the Jewish feasts; and which shall be accomplished, both in type and antitype, both in letter and in spirit, at the time to which this expression refers. The Feast of Tabernacles, at which they carried palm branches, and dwelt in open booths under the canopy of heaven, and drew water from the brook Siloah, commemorated their abode in the wilderness, when for forty years they were cast upon the providence of God, when his cloud covered them by night and by day, when he fed them daily with manna, and gave them of the waters of the rock to drink. And the same feast typified the coming deliverance of both the church and the Jewish people from a bondage worse than Egyptian, by an interposition so surpassing as to throw the former into the shade: and he will plant his tabernacle with them, and they shall be his people (Ezek. xxxvii. 27; Jer. xxxi. 31; Isai. iv. 6). At this coming time, all the nations and all the families of the earth shall come up to Jerusalem, to worship the King the Lord of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. And at the same time, in the heavenly Jerusalem, "a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations and kindreds and people and tongues," shall be congregated; having "white robes, and palms in their bands....having come out of the great tribulation, and worshipping before the throne of God, and serving him day and night in his temple: and He that sitteth on the throne shall tabernacle among them: they shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat for the Lamb, which is in the midst of the throne, shall feed them, and lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes" (Rev. vii.; Ps. xci.; cxxi. 6; Isai. xlix. 10). These passages prove the simultaneous accomplishment of the blessings prefigured in the Feast of Tabernacles, in the church of the first-born, in the Jewish people, and in the families of the earth: the blessings are the same, but the condition of the parties who receive them is different; and a blessing may seem changed in the altered condition of its recipient. The "tree of life" of the heavenly
Jerusalem, whose "leaves are for the healing of the nations" (Rev. xxii. 2), has its counterpart in the earthly Jerusalem, where shall grow "all trees for meat, whose leaf shall not fade ....and the fruit thereof shall be for meat, and the leaf thereof for medicine" (Ezek. xlvii, 12). But the Feast of Tabernacles is so full of instruction, and so important as a key to unfulfilled prophecy, that we shall follow it minutely into its typical import, and shew its bearings upon the interpretation of the Psalms and the Apocalypse, in a separate paper.
The Jews, in their whole past history, typified the church; and in God's dealings with them we read what will be his dealings with us, if we should be, like them, unfaithful. In the enemies of Judah, also, we may behold a representation of the enemies of the church; in the confederacies and devices of Judah, types of the confederacies and policies of the church; and in the destruction of these confederacies are prefigured the results of such infidel alliances and such false confidences in the church. The first of these confederacies of Judah was with the king of Assyria, which the Prophet was commanded to rebuke and forbid (Isai. vii. viii.) Ahaz refused to listen, or to trust the Lord; and the very confederate in whom he trusted became his oppressor and his scourge. To deliver themselves from the yoke of Assyria and Babylon, Judah afterwards made a confederacy with Egypt; which only increased their own misery, and brought the Egyptians also under the yoke of the king of Assyria. Tyre, the merchant-city, though the ally of Judah, and nourished and enriched thereby, rejoices in the spoliation and destruction of Judah, thinking its own gain will be increased by Judah's fall; and for this falsehood Tyre is visited with the indignation of the king of Babylon, and utter destruction at his hands: after which the king of Babylon receives the treasures of Egypt as his hire, in reward for his service against Tyre (Ezek. xxix. 20). And, finally, when both type and antitype have fulfilled the purpose of God, in shewing forth his long-suffering mercy and their own vile ingratitude, God shall arise and vindicate his own veracity, and shew that He is the Faithful and the True One, notwithstanding the worthlessness of Jew and Gentile; "that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world become guilty before God; having shut them all up together in unbelief, that he may have mercy upon all." "And then shall the Lord rise up, as in Mount Perazim; he shall be wroth, as in the valley of Gibeon; that he may do his work, his strange work, and bring to pass his act, his strange act..Moreover, the light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun shall be seven-fold, as the light of seven days, in the day that the Lord bindeth up the breach of his people, and healeth the stroke of their wound.