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by the Saviour in the obstinate impenitence, and increasing wickedness, of the unbelieving Jews_and in their not understanding this prophecy.-Nature and terms of the promise made to Daniel, in the 13th verse. It does not lead us to consider the general resurrection as a part of the fulfilment of this prophecy.—Brief notices of other predictions, in the scripture of truth, corresponding with this latter part of Daniel's last prophecy, as now interpreted.
We have now come to a part of the prophecy, in the twelfth chapter, which, from the view we have presented of the latter part of the eleventh chapter, will be felt of the deepest interest by every Christian ; for its opening terms form a prediction of the precise time of the first Advent of the Saviour.
CHAPTER XII. V. lst. “ And at that time Michael shall stand, the great prince that standeth for the children of thy people; and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation, to that time ; and at that time thy people shall be delivered, all found written in the book.”
To illustrate this prediction, it is necessary, that we inquire who Michael, the great Prince, is; and here we take leave to introduce the clear and powerful reasoning of Bishop Horsley upon the question. In his sermon on Daniel iv. 17, he says,—“We read of another personage superior to Gabriel, who is named Michael. This personage is superior to Gabriel, for he comes to help him in the greatest difficulties; and Gabriel, the servant of the Most High God, declares that this Michael is the only supporter he has. This is well to be noted : Gabriel, one of God's ministering spirits, sent forth, as such spirits are used to be, to minister for the elect people of God, has no supporter in this business but Michael. This great personage has been long distinguished in our calendars by the title of • Michael the archangel. It has been a long time a fashion in the church to speak very frequently and familiarly of archangels, as if they were an order of beings with which we are perfectly well acquainted. Some say there are seven of them. Upon what solid ground this assertion stands I know not : but this I know, that the word “ archangel” is not to be found in any passage of the Old Testament : in the New Testament, the word occurs twice, and only twice. One of the two passages is in the 1st Epistle to the Thessalonians, where the Apostle, among the circumstances of the pomp of our Lord's descent from heaven to the final judgment, mentions the “ voice of the archangel.” The other passage is in the Epistle of Jude, where the title of archangel is coupled with the name of Michael, “Michael the archangel.” This passage is so remarkably obscure, that I shall not attempt to draw any conclusion from it but this, which manifestly follows, be the particular sense of the passage what it may : since this is one of the two texts in which alone the word “archangel” is found in the whole Bible,-since in this one text only the title of archangel is coupled with any name,-and since the name with which it is here coupled is Michael,-it follows undeniably that the archangel Michael is the only archangel of whom we know any thing from holy writ. It cannot be proved from holy writ,—and if not from holy writ, it cannot be proved at all,—that any archangel exists but the one archangel Michael ; and this one archangel Michael is unquestionably the Michael of the book of Daniel. “I must observe, by the way, with respect to the import of the title of archangel, that the word, by its etymology, clearly implies a superiority of rank and authority in the person to whom it is applied. It implies a command over angels; and this is all that the word of necessity implies. But it follows not, by any sound rule of argument, that because no other superiority than that of rank and authority is implied in the title, no other belongs to the person distinguished by the title, and that he is in all other respects a mere angel. Since we admit various orders of intelligent beings, it is evident that a being highly above the angelic order may command angels.
“To ascertain, if we can, to what order of beings the archangel Michael may belong, let us see how he is described by the Prophet Daniel, who never describes him by that title ; and what action is attributed to him in the Book of Daniel, and in another Book in which he bears a very principal part.
« Now Daniel calls him “one of the chief princes," or “ one of the capital princes,” or “one of the princes that are at the head of all;" for this I maintain to be the full, and not more than the full, import of the Hebrew words. Now, since we are clearly got above the earth, into the order of celestials, who are the princes that are first, or at the head of all ?-are they any other than the Three Persons in the Godhead ? Michael, therefore, is one of them ; but which of them ? This is not left in doubt. Gabriel, speaking of him to Daniel, calls him, “ Michael your prince,” and “the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people ;" that is, not for the nation of
the Jews in particular, but for the children, the spiritual children, of that holy seed, the elect people of God,-a description which applies particularly to the Son of God, and to no one else. And in perfect consistence with this description of Michael in the Book of Daniel, is the action assigned to him in the Apocalypse, in which we find him fighting with the Old Serpent, the deceiver of the world, and victorious in the combat. That combat who was to maintain p_in that combat who was to be victorious, but the seed of the woman? From all this it is evident, that Michael is a name for our Lord himself, in his particular character of the champion of his faithful people, against the violence of the apostate faction, and the wiles of the Devil. In this point, I have the good fortune to have a host of the learned on my side.”
It may seem superfluous for us to add any thing to this convincing reasoning of Bishop Horsley, on the question, who Michael is ; but as he introduces it only incidentally, in the course of an argument on another subject, and has, owing to the brevity imposed on him in such circum. stances, not entered into other considerations-of which there are several, that confirm his conclusion,--nor adverted to some objections that might be made to that conclusion, we may be permitted to advert to some of both; especially as it will afterwards be seen, that the conclusiveness of our proof of the fulfilment of this part of the prophecy much depends on fully ascertaining the Scriptural account of the matter.
From Bishop Horsley's reasoning it appears, that Archangel is a title given, by Jude, to our Lord himself. The only other passage, in which the title occurs, is in 1st Thessalonians iv. 16, referred to by Bishop Horsley. At the first view of that passage, it might seem, that the title is there given to some Being distinct from our Lord. Hence an objection might be raised to the correctness of considering it as applied to him in any other part of Scripture. But when we compare that passage with others in holy writ, we discover that there, too, we must consider it as applied to him. The terms of the passage are, “ The Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the Archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first.” Here we must understand the shout with which the Lord himself shall descend, the voice of the Archangel, and the trump of God, as all three employed, agreeably to Paul's ample and emphatic manner of expressing himself, to signify the same thing,—that is, the summons that shall call the dead from their graves. As to the shout, the passage itself ascribes it to the Lord ; and respecting the voice, the Lord himself informs us, that it is his own voice that shall raise the dead to life, in a remarkable passage, which, as we shall have occasion to refer to part of it in illustration of some subsequent parts of the prophecy, we will quote at more length than might be necessary for our present purpose. It is in the Gospel by John* " Then answered Jesus, and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, the Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise. For the Father loveth the Son,