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The Prophecies have a Reference to good or evil things which are future: Now unless they are believed (in order to which it is neceffary that in fome measure they be understood) in the Progress of Things before the Event, they will be for the moft Part unprofitable. Certainly Jeremiah was willing that the Jews fhould understand his Prophecies about the Babylonish Captivity, before it actually began: In like manner Daniel, and the rest of the Prophets, defigned that their Predictions of the coming of the Meffiah fhould be understood before his Appearance. The Apostles foretold the coming of Antichrift, together with his Destruction: And they have alfo forewarned us of the Resurrec tion of the Dead, and the future Judgment. All these we must believe before the Event; and fome Knowledge must neceffarily go before our Faith, by way of Foundation. Now this is not to be obtained by any Light of Nature, but is only to be learned from the facred Scriptures.

To conclude this Article, we confefs that fome of the Prophecies are more obfcure than others, and they are so much the more difficult to be explained, as we attempt to give a particular Definition of Times and Places. Farther, that which is but once or feldom faid, or related only by one Prophet, is not so easy to be explained, or put beyond all doubt. But as to that which is fignified by many Prophets, and oftentimes by the very fame Prophet, we need not be in fo much doubt as to the meaning of it. They mutually afford Light to each other, and the Truth of the Argument confirmed by many Witneffes. The general Conclufion which we have premifed is this, That the Jews fhall at last be restored. And we have fhewn that this Conclufion has been oftentimes predicted by moft of the Prophets, and for that Reason I



can never look upon it as an uncertain and dubious


It is in the second Place objected, that thofe future good things which are literally predicted by the Prophets to the Jews, are indeed allegorical, and to be transferred to the Chriftian Church. I anfwer, that we envy the Chriftian Church no Happiness, nor defire to detract from her Felicity; yet we would not exclude others, when they fhall acknowledge the fame Meffiah; let us rejoice at our Chriftian Privileges, and magnify the extenfive Grace of God; but it feems very unreasonable that we should snatch at all thofe good things which the Prophets have promised, and attribute all the evil Predictions to the Jews. Which is too frequent a Practice among Interpreters. But by what right are the Jews excluded from partaking with us in thofe Promifes which we have received from the Mouth of Jewish Prophets, who were directing their Difcourfes to the Jews? Certainly it behoved the Prophets to look after their Affairs in the. firft Place; and to premonish them of future Events, whether profperous or afflictive. fometimes their very Words and Phrafeology fhew fome particular Matter, as when they mention the Children of Ifrael by Name, or fpeak of the Land of Canaan, or their native Country, concerning Jerufalem, or the ten Tribes, about the House of David, or the like. These are not to be wrested to a contrary Senfe against the genuine Signification of the Words, and without any juft Authority. It is indeed fometimes proper and decent to transfer Words from a common Senfe to a mystical one; as often as a literal Interpretation would be attended with fome Abfurdity, and offer Violence to the Nature of Things. But this is not to be done. rafhly, and at the Pleasure of the Interpreter to ferve

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an Hypothefis, or defend fome favourite Opinion, when no folid Reafon calls for fuch a proceeding.

Befides, thofe Oracles of the ancient Prophets, given to the Jews, concerning their Reftauration, we have feveral in the New Teftament that are fo far from contradicting them, that they entirely agree and chime in with them. Chrift is promised the Throne of David, according to the Declaration of the Angel; (Luke i. 32.) and the fame was faid before by Ifaiah. (c. ix. 7. See 1 Kings viii. 25. 2 Chron. vi. 16. Pf. cxxxii. 11, 12.) Now the Reftauration of the fews is joined to the Kingdom of David, that is the Meffiah, by other Prophets; we have before taken notice of thofe Places. (Jer. Xxx. 9. and xxxiii. 15, 16. Ezek xxxiv. 22, 24, 25, &c. Hofea iii. 5.) Befides thefe, let us particularly attend to the Words of Gabriel in his Addrefs to the Virgin Mary, being then about to conceive. And the Lord God shall give unto him (i. e. Chrift) the Throne of his Father David. And be fhall reign over the House of Jacob for ever. These Phrafes, of the Throne of David, and Reign over the Houfe of Jacob, plainly point out the Children of Ifrael, and denote an external Kingdom. But however you understand it, whether in a temporal or fpiritual manner, Chrift has not as yet either way reigned over the Jews; they are at present, and have been for a long time, without King or Prince, as Hofea foretold. (c. iii. 4.) And as to a fpiritual Kingdom, they yet continue rebellious, and far the greater Part of them are Enemies to Chrift's Regal Office, and Aliens from the Christian Faith; fo that take which Interpretation you will, the Event does not yet agree with the Meffage of the Angel.

We may add here the Song of Simeon, when he embraced the infant Saviour in his Arms he cried

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out, Thou haft prepared a Light for the Gentiles, and the Glory of thy People Ifrael. (Luke ii. 32.) When Chrift is faid to be born for the Glory of Ifrael,. it would be hard and perverse to fay, that he was born for the perpetual Ruin of Ifrael. I say perpetual if there be no future time wherein he is to come, and reign to the Glory of Ifrael. Call to mind if you please how many and great things have been faid by the Prophets, concerning the future Glory of Ifrael in the Days of the Meffiah. And fince we have fomewhere mentioned David, we will look into fome of his Pfalms; we there meet with fome things fpoken typically concerning David, which are ultimately fulfilled in the Meffiah; and where the Meffiah is treated of, and his Days celebrated, wrath is denounced against the Heathens, but Health and Triumph (P. cx. 13.) promised to Ifrael. Thefe joyful times have not as yet happened to the Jews: But what hinders but that they may yet come? According to the Promises of God, the Prophets, and the holy Angel.

In the third Place it is objected, or answered to our Propofition, that thefe Promifes given to the Jews were Conditional, and when the Condition is not fulfilled,. the Promife does not oblige the Sponfor. But, I fay, if he also promifes that he will freely remit thefe Conditions, or cause them to be performed, either way the Promise must take Effect. The Conditions requifite, are Repentance and Converfion to God: Now God has promised that he will give this Grace; and the People will be willing, and ready in the Day of the Divine Power. Alfo when the Prophets foretel the Restauration of the Jews, they alfo declare that their Sins will be forgiven. (Jer. xxxi. 34. xxxiii. 7, 8. 8. Mic. vii. 18, 19, 20. Hof. xiv. 4. Thus God of his mere Grace and good Pleasure fhews favour to


those who are altogether undeferving; to the Jews firft, and then to the Gentiles. And taking the Jews into the Number of his Children, he pardons their Sins out of a paternal Affection, and Remembrance of his Covenant; as the Prophets often teftify. St. Paul who was a Partaker of this Grace, while he was yet very troublesome to the Chriftians, and a vehement Perfecutor of them, foretels the future Recovery of the Jews, being mindful of the Covenant which God made with their Fathers, (Rom. xi. 26.---29.) and of which he would not repent. Laftly, Chrift when dying interceded for the Jews, and poured out Prayers to his Father for the Remiffion of their Sins; Prayers that I fuppofe were in no wife unprofitable or unavailing.

But to fet this Matter in a clear Light; we may confider that whatever Wickedness the Jews have committed against Jefus of Nazareth, they fhall review it with Anguish of Mind, when they fee the Son of Man coming in the Clouds of Heaven. (Dan. vii. 13. and from him the Author of 2 Macab. ii. 7, 8.)

Then fhall they mourn for him, call him bleffed and acknowledge him to be the Messiah. (Matt. xxiii. 39, and xxiv. 30. John xix 37. Rev. i. 7.) To that End God will pour out a Spirit of Grace and Supplication on the House of David, together with other Gifts of his holy Spirit. (Ifa. xxxii. 15, and xliv. 3. liv. 13. Joel ii. 28.) He will also give them a new and circumcifed Heart, and put a new Spirit within them. (Jer. xxxii. 40. Ezek. xi. 19, 20.) Can any thing farther be defired? Is there any room left here for Evasions? God will take Care that the Means and Conditions be performed as well as the End accomplished.

We may farther obferve, that it is not proper for Chriftians to infift too much on this Answer about


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