Obrazy na stronie

we touched but lightly on the internal condition of the city: and some further statement may be necessary, that the calamities of that fearful season may be duly understood.

We have already noticed, that the stored provisions of the city having been very wantonly wasted and consumed, in the previous rage of the factions against each other, and the town being full with the multitudes which had come 19 celebrate the Passover, the miseries of famine began to be experienced very soon after the Romans appeared before its walls. At the very first, many of the wealthier and more peaceable citizens endeavoured to escape from the place, foreseeing the miseries which too surely followed. They sold their property to any purchaser, at any price: and some swallowed their money, that they might not be plundered by the robbers. Such as succeeded in making their escape out of the town were permitted by the Romans to pass through their camp and proceed where they pleased But although John and Simon had the most pressing reasons to make them glad to get rid of useless hands and mouths, they slew without mercy, as friends to the Romans, all whom they detected in the attempt to escape.

The famine soon raged with terrible effect; and, as often happens under such circumstances, was soon attended by a grievous pestilence. Having ourselves had some experience of tamine and pestilence in a besieged Eastern city, we can feel the full force of the statement made by Josephus, as to the conduct of the Zealots and robbers towards the citizens and strangers, whom they regarded with hatred and contempt as useless incumbrances, who had no right to the common blessings of life, and whuse enjoyment of which was deemed a sort of fraud upon the active defenders oi the place. Their atrocities against the people surpassed all bounds, as soon as they began themselves to feel or to dread the approaches of that scarcity which themselves had occasioned. They broke into the houses of the people in search of food. If they found none, as very generally was the case, they alleged that the inhabitants had provision concealed, and scourged them severely to extort a disclosure: and if provisions were ultimately discovered, after the 15mates had denied that there were any, they were slain or tortured to punish their deception. While therefore those who had no food died of starvation, those who had a little ate their morsel in agony and fear. The man who looked in good health, or who kept his doors shut, was suspected of having provisions ; his house was forcibly entered, and the inmates shamefully treated, without regard of age or sex, by the human wolves who were masters of the city, and sho went about seeking what they might devour. The most wealthy inhabitants shared in the common calamity

. The Zealots sought pretences against them, to cut them off'; and pretences were easily found. They were dragged before the tyrants, and charged with an intention to betray the city, or to desert to the Romans: false witnesses appeared against them, and they were put to death. Others gave half, or the whole of their possessions for a measure of wheat. and those of the middling rank for one of barley; and this they were obliged to convey by stealth to the most private place in their house, where many ate it without any preparation, not daring to grind or dress it, lest the noise or smell should bring the rapacious Zealots to tear it from them. The few who did venture at some preparation seldom bad patience to await its completion, but snatched the scarcely warm bread from the fire, and devoured it with greediness Such a thing as a regular and distinct meal was not known in Jerusalem.

As the time passed on these miseries increased. Every thing that could be tortured into a means of subsistence such as vermin, grass, and old leather-was held a luxury and sold at a high price. The eye of the tender and delicate woman began to be evil towards the fruit of her womb. There was one lady, called Miriam, who had taken refuge u the city at the beginning of the war. The factious Zealots, who lived now on the plunder of the helpless, had oftea visited her house, and carried off such provisions as she had been able to procure. Reduced to utter desperation. she entreated or endeavoured to provoke the mercy of death at their hands ; but they refused it

. In the madness of her despair and the agony of her famine, she took the child which clung to her bosom, slew him, and roasted the corpse. Having satiated her present hunger, she hid the remainder for future use. But the Zealots being attracted by the scent, rushed into her house, and threatened death unless she produced her store. She did produce it. She placed the remains of the child before them, and bade them eat and be satisfied. Even they were horrified at this: seized with sudden dread, they departed, trembling, from the house, leaving the mother in full possession of her horrid fare. The news of this awful transaction spread horror and consternation through the city; and the most sanguine began to despair of that deliverance from heaven which they had so long and vainly expected. Titus also heard of it, and called Heaven to witness, that he was innocent of the miseries suffered, and the atrocities committed, in the city tə which he had so often offered peace in vain.

Immense multitudes of persons died of famine. The robbers, on breaking into the houses in search of provision o spoil, found numbers of the inmates lying dead or dying of hunger. They pillaged the corpses, and tore the last fras ment of covering from both the dying and the dead. Nothing could move their savage hearts: they pierced the dead bodies, and goaded those who were expiring with their swords; but when some unhappy wretch, in the last languistings of famine, entreated death at their hands as a mercy, him they refused.

At first, those who died were interred by the public; but when the dead multiplied beyond measure, they were taken and thrown over the walls. Titus, on riding round the city, and observing the defiles filled with dead bodies was struck with compassion, and called God to witness that the Jews were themselves the authors of their calsmities. Even this last service to the dead and the living was at last neglected ; and the dead were left to corruptica in the chambers and the streets. In the latter were seen heaps corpses, in different stages of decay; numbers of persons dying unheeded by the wayside ; and the living crawling along like walking skeletons. When the Romans took the upper city, they were shocked to find numbers who had perished with hunger, lying in the upper chambers of every house they entered. But there was no wailing for the dead, no lamentations in the city. Josephus observes, with great force and truth, that famine confounded all natural feeling. Those who were about to die, looked with dry eyes and open mouths upon those who had departed before them. There was dead silence throughout the city.

Some idea of the dreadful mortality in the city may be derived from the circumstance related to the Romans by Manneus, a deserter from the city, that from the middle of April to the first of July, no less than 115,880 dead bodies were carried out from one gate of the city, where he had been stationed, besides those who were buried by their relatives. The number of those carried through the gates was subsequently stated by some deserters at 600,000 ; and the number of those disposed of in other ways could not be estimated.

It is necessary to add a few words concerning those who escaped from the city, or deserted to the Romans, or were made prisoners of war.

Great numbers of the besieged, particularly of the poorer sort, were willing to run all hazards to escape from the miserable town: so strongly was this desire manifested, that many finding no other way of escapes real deserters were not ill treated ; but many of them were reduced to such a state by famine, that they perished from taking more food than their weak frames could bear. It being also at one time suspected by the soldiers that the deserters had swallowed their guld, they ripped open two thousand living deserters in one night, in search of money :

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Titus, whose policy it was to encourage such desertions, prohibited the repetition of this inhuman act on pain of death: but it was still secretly practised, although very little gold was found. Those who attempted to escape to the open country, or who wandered out in search of herbs for their sustenance, were scourged and crucified if they resisted. The same was the fate of all who were taken prisoners, as well to terrify the besieged, as to glut the rage and hatred of the besiegers. A most horrid spectacle was exhibited around the city, by the numbers who hung dead, and those who still writhed under the protracted tortures of the cross. And so many were they that, as Josephus reports, room was wanting for the crosses, and crosses wanting for the bodies.

24. " They shall fall by the edge of the sword.”—Lipsius took the trouble to collect the account, so far as stated by Josephus, of the numbers who perished during the whole war. The result affords a remarkable and very melancholy illustration of this prediction. On the authority of Josephus himself, we have corrected one item, by inserting 40,000

instead of 30,000 slain at Jotapa. * At Jerusalem, by order of Florus 630 Drowned at Joppa in a storm

4,200 By the inhabitants of Cæsarea, in hatred to

Slain at Tarichæa

6,500 the Jews 20,000 Slain or killed themselves at Gamala

9,000 At Scythopolis, in Syria 30,000 Killed in their flight from Gischala

2,000 By the inhabitants of Ascalon

At the siege of Jutapa

40,000 · By the inhabitants of Ptolemais

2,000 Of the Gadarenes, besides vast numbers who At Alexandria in Egypt, under Alexander, an

drowned themselves

13.000 apostate Jew 50,000 In the villages of Idumea

10,000 At Damascus

At Gerasa

1,000 At the taking of Joppa 8,400 At Machærus

1,700 In the mountain of Cabulo 2,000 In the Desert of Jardes

3,000 In a fight at Ascalon 10,000 Slew themselves at Massada

960 La In an ambush 8,000 In Cyrene, by the Roman governor

3,000 At the taking of Aphek

15,000 Perished at Jerusalem, by famine, pestilence, is one Upon Mount Gerizim 11,600 and the sword

1,100,000 Result

1,347,490. This account is independent of a vast unascertained number who perished in caves, woods and wildernesses, in the Faults and sewers of Jerusalem, in banishment, and in other ways. "The number assigned to Jerusalem might seem

incredible, did we not recollect the vast concourse which, at the commencement of the siege, had assembled in the city " to celebrate the Passover. Josephus shows, by calculation from the number of lambs consumed, that about two mil

lions and a half of people were usually present at Jerusalem on such occasions. As this institution was so peculiar, it was scarcely possible for the siege and destruction of any single city in the world to have been equally a national

or attended with equal destruction of life. Hence, Josephus is justified in his belief, that the destruction at 'Jerusalem exceeded all the destructions which God or man ever brought upon the world.

Shall be led away captive into all nations.”—The number of Jews taken by the Romans during the war amounted to about 97,000, besides 11,000 who were either starved through neglect, or starved themselves through sullenness and despair. Some of the youngest and handsomest were sent to Rome, to adorn the triumph of Titus ; many were distributed to the several cities of Syria, where they perished in the theatres, being compelled to fight with wild beasts, and to engage in mortal combats with each other. The remainder of those above seventeen years of age were sent to labour in the Egyptian mines ; and those under that age were sold for slaves. Besides this, and before the upper city was taken, there was a great multitude of deserters, who having not come over till the last extremity, and after Titus had declared that he would receive no more, were treated as captives. A great number of these, including many persons of consideration, were sold at the most trifling prices; but the remainder, consisting of 40,000 persons, chiefly of the lower orders, were liberated, because no one would take them

at any price. Thus, at once, was fulfilled the prediction of our Saviour, as in this text, and that which Moses delivered about sixteen hundred years before — Ye shall be sold unto your enemies for bondmen and bondwomen, and no man shall buy you.” There also, and in other passages of prophecy, this second bondage in kgypt was foretold. Indeed it is impossible to trace throughout the minute fulfilment of ancient and recent prophecy, in the awful transactions and crimes of this season, and yet resist the conviction that, in all these things, there was the hand of God punishing a most guilty people, and requiring from them all the righteous blood which had been shed from the foundation of the world-and more especially that mat righteous blood of Christ, the weight of which they had invoked upon their own heads when they cried - His blood be on us and on our children!” And from them and from their children that blood was most fearfully required. Even a thoughtful dew, like Josephus, and a thoughtful idolater, like Titus

, could not resist, and repeatedly declared their conviction that the nation was doomed of God. They saw how all things, even those that seemed the most favourable, wrought together for its ruin and destruction.



2 And the Chief Priests and Scribes * The Jeus conspire against Christ. 3 Satan pre- sought how they might kill him; for they pareth Judas to betruy him. 7 The apostles pre feared the people. pare the Passover. 19 Christ instituteth his holy supper, 21 covertly foretelleth of the traitor, 24

3 , Then entered Satan into Judas surdehorteth the rest of his apostles from ambition, named Iscariot, being of the number of the 31 assureth Peter his faith should not fail : 34 twelve. and yet he should deny him thrice. 39 He prayeth in the mount, and sweateth blood, 47 is betrayed

4 And he went his way, and communed

with the Chief Priests and captains, how he thrice denied of Peter, 63 shamefully abused, 66 and confesseth himself to be the Son of God. 5 And they were glad, and covenanted to Now 'the feast of unleavened bread drew give him money. nigh, which is called the Passover.

6 And he promised, and sought oppor


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1 Matt. 26. 2.

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tunity to betray him unto them 'in the ab- 25 'And he said unto them, The kings of sence of the multitude.

the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; 7 q *Then came the day of unleavened and they that exercise authority upon them bread, when the Passover must be killed. are called benefactors.

8 And he sent Peter and John, saying, 26 But ye shall not be so: but he that is Go and prepare us the Passover, that we greatest among you, let him be as the

younger; and he that is chief, as he that 9 And they said unto him, Where wilt doth serve. thou that we prepare?

27 For whether is greater, he that sitteth 10 And he said unto them, Behold, when at meat, or he that serveth ? is not he that ye are entered into the city, there shall a sitteth at meat? but I am among you as he man meet you, bearing a pitcher of water; | that serveth. follow him into the house where he entereth 28 Ye are they which have continued in.

with me in my temptations. 11 And ye shall say unto the goodman 29 And I appoint unto you a kingdom, of the house, The Master saith unto thee, as my Father hath appointed unto me; Where is the guestchamber, where I shall 30 That ye may eat and drink at my table cat the Passover with my disciples ? in my kingdom, "and sit on thrones judging

12 And he shall shew you a large upper the twelve tribes of Israel. room furnished: there make ready.

31 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, 13 And they went, and found as he had behold, "Satan hath desired to have you, said unto them: and they made ready the that he may sift you as wheat: Passover.

32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy 14 "And when the hour was come, he sat faith fail not: and when thou art converted, down, and the twelve apostles with him. strengthen thy brethren.

15 And he said unto them, With desire 33 And he said unto him, Lord, I am I have desired to eat this Passover with you ready to go with thee, both into prison, and before I suffer:

to death. 16 For I say unto you, I will not any more

34 "And he said, I tell thee, Peter, the cat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the king cock shall not crow this day, before that dom of God.

thou shalt thrice deny that thou knowest 17 And he took the

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thanks, me. and said, Take this, and divide it among 35 18And he said unto them, When I sent yourselves :

you without purse, and scrip, and shoes, 18 For I say unto you, I will not drink | lacked ye any thing? And they said, Noof the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom thing, of God shall come.

36 Then said he unto them, But now, he 19 "And he took bread, and gave thanks, that hath a purse, let him take it, and like. and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, wise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, This is my body which is given for you: this let him sell his garment, and buy one. do in remembrance of me.

37 For I say unto you, that this that is 20 Likewise also the cup after supper, written must yet be accomplished in me, saying, This

cup is the new testament in my 'And he was reckoned among the transblood, which is shed for you.

gressors: for the things concerning me have 21 [ But, behold, the hand of him that betrayeth me is with me on the table.

38 And they said, Lord, behold, here are 22 And truly the Son of man goeth, as it two swords. And he said unto them, It is was determined: but woe unto that man by enough. whom he is betrayed !

39° 'And he came out, and went, as he 23 And they began to enquire among was wont, to the mount of Olives; and his themselves, which of them it was that should disciples also followed him. do this thing:

40* And when he was at the place, he 24 | And there was also a strife among said unto them, Pray that ye enter not into them, which of them should be accounted temptation. the greatest.

an end.

41 And he was withdrawn from them 3 Or, without tumull.

8 Matt. 26. 21.

* Matt. 26. 17.
10 Matt, 19, 23. 11 Pet. 5, 8.

5 Matt. 96 91. $ Or, I have heartily desired. 7 Matt. 26. 26.
1. Matt. 26.34, 13 Matt, 10. 9.

1. Isa, 53. 12. 15 Matt, 26, 36.

. Matt. 2.15. Matt. 26. 41.

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about a stone's cast, and kneeled down, what would follow, they said unto him, Lord, and prayed,

shall we smite with the sword ? 42 Saying, Father, if thou be willing, re- 50 | And one of them smote the servant move this cup from me: nevertheless not my of the High Priest, and cut off his right will, but thine, be done.

43 And there appeared an angel unto 51 And Jesus answered and said, Suffer him from heaven, strengthening him.

ye thus far.

And he touched his ear, and 44 And being in an agony he prayed healed him. more earnestly: and his sweat was as it 52 Then Jesus said unto the Chief Priests, were great drops of blood falling down to and captains of the temple, and the elders, the ground.

which were come to him, Be ye come out, 45 And when he rose up from prayer, as against a thief, with swords and staves ? and was come to his disciples, he found 53 When I was daily with you in the them sleeping for sorrow,

temple, ye stretched forth no hands against 46 And said unto them, Why sleep ye? me; but this is your hour, and the power of rise and pray, lest ye enter into temptation. darkness.

47 | And while he yet spake, "ibehold a 54 8Then took they him, and led him, multitude, and he that was called Judas, and brought him into the High Priest's one of the twelve, went before them, and house. And Peter followed afar off. drew near unto Jesus to kiss himn.

55 "And when they had kindled a fire in 48 But Jesus said unto him, Judas, be- the midst of the hall, and were set down totrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss ? gether, Peter sat down among them. 49 When they which were about him saw 56 But a certain maid beheld him as he 17 Matt. 26. 47. 18 Matt, 26. 57.

19 Matt. 26. 69.

sat by the fire, and earnestly looked upon 64 And when they had blindfolded him, him, and said, This man was also with him. they struck him on the face, and asked him,

57 And he denied him, saying, Woman, saying, Prophesy, who is it that smote thee! I know him not.

65 And many other things blasphemously 58 And after a little while another saw spake they against him. him, and said, Thou art also of them. And 66 T 20 And as soon as it was day, the Peter said, Man, I am not.

elders of the people and the Chief Priests 59 And about the space of one hour after and the Scribes came together, and led him another confidently affirmed, saying, Of a into their council, saying, truth this fellow also was with him : for he 67 Art thou the Christ? tell us. And he is a Galilæan.

said unto them, If I tell you, ye will not 60 And Peter said, Man, I know not what believe : thou sayest. And immediately, while he yet 68 And if I also ask you, ye will not anspake, the cock crew.

swer me, nor let me go. 61 And the Lord turned, and looked upon 69 Hereafter shall the Son of man sit on Peter. And Peter remembered the word of the right hand of the power of God. the Lord, how he had said unto him, Before 70 Then said they all, Art thou then the the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. Son of God? And he said unto them, "Ye

62 And Peter went out, and wept þit- say that I am. terly.

71 And they said, What need we any 63 q And the men that held Jesus mocked further witness? for we ourselves have heard him, and smote him.

of his own mouth. 20 Matt. 27. 1.

21 Mark 14. 62. Verse 13." Made ready the Passover.”—The preparation required was to get the lamb killed and dressed, and to make ready the bitter herbs, the unleavened bread, and the wine. In the first instance, the company who agreed to eat the passover together, sent their lamb to the Temple, to be there slaughtered; for this might be done at no other place. The killing of the lamb was no sacerdotal act, but was performed by the person who brought it. The Temple court was generally full on such occasions, and nothing could be done unless fifty persons were present. While the slaying was in progress, the Levites sung the Psalms composing what was called the Lesser or Egyptian Hallel-so named from their beginning and ending with the word " Hallelujah"-in memory of the deliverance from Egypt. These Psalms were from the 113th to the 118th, both inclusive. This Hallel was sung on several occasions in the course of the year, and among others on the night of the passover, in the several paschal parties ; and the four last of these psalms probaby formed the hymn” which was sung by our Lord's party before they went to the Mount of Olives (Mati. xxvi. 30). The blood of the lambs was sprinkled, in the usual way, by the priests in attendance, after which they were flayed and opened by the persons who brought them; the inward parts which the Law specifies, were then laid upon the altar, and the lambs taken away, together with the skins, which last became the perquisite of the landlord in whose house the passover was celebrated.

The particulars concerning the dressing of the lamb being fully given in the Law, need not be repeated in this note. in which we only desire such details as the Law does not specify. It is only needful to remind the reader, that the lamb was to be roasted whole, that not a bone of it was to be broken, and that it was to be entirely eaten on the pass. over night. The manner in which the Jews sat at this celebration, we shall notice under John xiii. ; and now proceed to observe, that when all things were ready the feast began with small cups of red wine mingled with water, which every one drunk off, after thanks had been given. This preliminary grace was pronounced by the master of the family, it there were one, or, if not, by a proper person who, by his situation or character, or by the choice of the others, was appointed to preside and officiate. This presiding office, of course, was discharged by Christ in the present instance. Whether he did and said all that other persons filling his office were accustomed to do, there is no evidence to shov. If he did, he also added other things which certainly no other person ever did or could say. The thanks before the wine was in the usual formulary, “ Blessed be thou, O Lord, who hast created the fruit of the vine."

After the wine, the persons present washed their hands; and then the paschal supper was produced upon the table. This consisted of the lamb, the unleavened bread, and the bitter herbs. There was, besides these, a dish not prescribed in the Law of Moses, consisting of a thick sauce, composed by mixing and pounding sweet and bitter things togethersuch as dates, figs, raisins, vinegar, and other ingredients ; intended as a memorial of the clay in which the Hebrew fathers laboured in Egypt. The unleavened bread consisted of two or three cakes, the eating of which was considered of such essential importance that it was offered even to sick persons and children, and if they could not eat it dry, it was sopped and macerated in some liquid, that they might at least eat as much as the quantity of an olive.

All things being thus prepared, the master (for so we will call him) takes some of the salad of bitter herbs, and after thanking God, who had created the fruit of the ground, he dipped it into the sauce, or, as some think, into wine or vinegar, and ate a small quantity, the rest of the company doing the same. This singular beginning of the meal was said to be intended to excite the curiosity of the children and lead them to require an explanation. However, an explanation was at all events given ; for if there were no children, the wife inquired ; and if there were no wise, the company inquired of one another; or if no inquiry were made, the master undertook, unasked, to explain the circumstances attending the deliverance from Egypt, which the feast commemorated. The explanation was short and impressive; and after it was given, the company sung the 113th and 114th Psalms, commencing the Egyptian Hallel. T'hen a second cup of wine was taken in the same manner as before. The hands were then again washed; after which the master took two of the cakes of unleavened bread and broke one of them, laying the broken parts upon the whole one ; after which he blessed God, who bringeth bread out of the earth. Here the thanks, we observe, followed, not preceded, the breaking of the bread, for which the reason was alleged, that this was the bread of poverty and affliction. The master, imitated by the others, then wrapped some of the bitter herbs in a piece of the broken cake, and dipping the whole iz


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