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as much or more than did the deluge; and especially to have elevated the bed of that which is emphatically the Apocalyptic as well as Roman sea, the Mediterranean, and turned it into dry land: though not such as to have destroyed the vaster oceans of our globe; to which oceans the statement of the sea giving up its dead, subsequently and post-millennially, may have reference. Above all, quitting the Apocalyptic prophecy, if we resort to the parallel prophecies of the new heavens and new earth in other scriptures, we shall, I think, see that, whatever the statement mean about the sea being no more, it cannot be in any such literal and full meaning of the word sea, as to negative our general theory. For St. John by his new heavens and earth, mentioned in connection with Christ's coming, cannot but mean the same new heavens and earth that St. Peter? also connects with his coming : and St. Peter's new heavens and earth are identified by the words, “ We, according to his promise. look for new heavens and a new earth," with those predicted in Isaiah lxv. 17, lxvi. 22, where alone the promise is made : in which last not only was “ Jerusalem spoken of as to be then a rejoicing, and her people a joy,” but isles far off noted as places whose inhabitants would see the glory ; isles implying of course the existence of a sea to form and surround them._ Then, as to the second objection, let us remember that expressions tantamount to what is here said of the extinction of death in the new Jerusalem, are used in other prophecies with reference to millennial times ; - the times, that is, of Israel's restoration, and of Christ's reigning gloriously before his

1

See Vol. i. p. 342, Note

2 2 Peter iii. 13. 3 Whitby himself admits this identity of St. Peter's and Isaiah's new heavens and earth ; but would thus strangely construe the former; “We before this conflagration, or besides this conflagration, expect a new heaven,” &c.—Scott says; “In some scriptures (as Isa. Ixv.) the new heavens and earth seem to describe the most prosperous days of the church on earth ; yet here (in St. Peter) the state of the righteous after the day of judgment and dissolution of this present world is evidently intended : but what is meant the fulfilment alone can explain.” And so A. Clark.-But where the "promise" Peter speaks of, except in Isaiah? In fact this connexion of the passages in Peter and Isaiah is (as I have already hinted at, p. 220 suprà,) a difficulty no anti-premillennarian theory can fairly

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ancients in it. “In this mountain,” says Isaiah, “ shall the Lord of hosts make unto all people a feast of fat things; and He will destroy in this mountain the face of the covering cast over all people, and the veil that is spread over all nations: He will swallow up death in victory: and the Lord God will wipe away tears from off all faces : ”a passage, as we have before seen,2 applied by St. Paul to the epoch of the first resurrection. Nor does the use of the phrase in this vision of the New Jerusalem, though millennially construed, seem inappropriate. For among the constituency of the New Jerusalem itself, death will in the fullest sense be no more. And in regard even to the earth's inhabitants during the millennial period, though Death and Hades be not as yet extinguished, and, as Isaiah also intimates in his prophecy, there be still dying, yet may it very possibly be dying not until the end of the Millennium, as it is said, “As the days of a tree are the days of my people ; ” and again, that a hundred years would be then but the measure of infancy ; 3 “ the leaves of the tree of life being for the healing of the nations : " + besides that the dying may be then without pain, and a mere easy translation to a heavenly and higher state.—As to the curse, its absence from the earth during the millennial period is the concurrent declaration of all prophecy. The very conflagration that is to mark its introduction, will but, I suppose, have been to what remains habitable of the earth as a purifying fire ; and yielded its help, as before said, towards converting its very deserts into a Paradise.

Thus, on the whole, I incline to the conclusion, (at which conclusion however, in consequence of some of these objections, I long hesitated, and now only suggest it as most probable,) that the New Jerusalem vision appertains to millennial times; and that it is retrogressive consequently in its chronological character. Which

1 Isa. XXV. 8.

4

? See p. 205 suprà.

3 Isa. Ixv. 20, 22.

Apoc. xxii. 2. 5 The expression is used in Gen. viii. 21, “I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake,” in a much more restricted sense. 6 See p. 230.

being so, a position will of course be assigned it, like as to the former retrogressive series of visions, on the outer side of the Apocalyptic scroll. On the which side it does indeed so naturally fit into its place, and so precisely fill up the space that would otherwise be left vacant on it, and with such marks and taches of parallelism, just as before, to connect it with the corresponding visions on the inner side of the scroll, -as to furnish to my own mind no unimportant subsidiary evidence, of the view which I have thus preferred to take of its chronology being correct.

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This point settled, it is of course among the Apocalyptic“ nations of them that are saved,” which are said to walk in its light, and “the kings of the earth,” which are said to bring their glory and honour into it, that we are to place the restored Jews and Gentile remnant, preserved from the conflagation, of whom the Old Testament prophecy says so much :-the Jews having now a certain pre-eminence and peculiar glory, such as seem constantly predicted of Israel and the earthly Jerusalem, in the earlier prophecies of the latter day. With which view the statement that“ in Christ Jesus there is neither Jew nor Greek, circumcision nor uncircumcision,” is not, I think, inconsistent :-seeing that that statement had reference to the premillennial times of the gathering out of all nations of the Church of the redeemed, the New Jerusalem ; wherein equal honours, and an equal reward, were intended for the engrafted as for the natural menbers of the true Israel; but not to the very different times, and different dispensation, of the Millennium.-It seems possible too that the beloved cityof Apoc. xx. 9, may be this earthly Jerusalem ; though I prefer to understand it of the heavenly or new Jerusalem. But even on this latter hypothesis there must be supposed, I conceive, a most intimate connexion of the one Jerusalem with the other ; the earthly Jerusalem being that upon, or over, which, the glory of the New Jerusalem is to rest; like as Jehovah's pillar of fire on the tabernacle in the wilderness, or the more awful glory on the top of Sinai." Here, I say, it would seem that there is to be the meetingpoint of earth and heaven ; and that same conjunction to be visibly manifested, of which I spoke before in my preceding chapter, of the ultimate blessedness of the spiritual and of the natural seed of Abraham :- a conjunction and blending together of the two, such, that it is often difficult, if not impossible, to discern in prophecy where the one ends and the other begins.

1 See p. 86 suprà.

And thus, when we turn to consider the state of things during the Millennium, our minds seem irresistibly directed to Jerusalem, as the Mother-Church of a Christianized universe : (for even though we admitted the literal Judaic character of the Jerusalem in Ezekiel's last obscure prophecy, it would by no means involve the literal Judaic construction of its temple and its sacrifices ; 3) I say as the Mother-Church of a Christian world, and focus and centre of the glories of that latter day. There the Shechinah of Messiah's presence is, as it would seem, to shine refulgent;4 there the King to be seen in his beauty;' there too probably the manifestation to be made, more fully than elsewhere, of the perfected company of the redeemed, the general assembly,6 the glorified sons of God : 7—who, entrusted with the new earth's government, subordinately to Christ himself, in gracious reward of past service, 8(perhaps after the example of those angels that, having kept their first estate,

Compare Isa. iv. 2–5 : In that day shall the branch of the Lord be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel. And it shall come to pass that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem ; when the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof, by the spirit of judgment and by the spirit of burning. And the Lord will create upon every dwelling-place of Mount Zion, and upon her assemblies, a cloud and smoke by day, and the shining of a flaming fire by night; for upon all the glory there shall be a defence."

2 See p. 202. 3 See my Vol. i. pp. 330—332.—So Justin Martyr in his Millennial view. Oi, εν τη παλιν παράσια, μη δοξητε λεγειν Ησαιαν, η τ8ς αλλες προφητας, θυσιας αφ' αιματων η σπονδων επι το θυσιαςηριον αναφερεσθαι, αλλα αληθινος και πνευματικες alvos kai evxapısıas. Dial. cum Tryph.-So too Whitby, quoted Note 2, p. 234. 4 Psalm cii. 16, &c. 5 Isaiah xxxiii. 17.

6 Heb. xii. 23. 7 Rom. viii. 19.

8 Luke xix. 17, Heb. ii. 5, &c.

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have had this present earth entrusted to their charge and ministry,); shall be recognized as the constituency of the New Jerusalem, in all their resurrection glories, during the aww or age, of the millennial dispensation.-Meanwhile thither concomitantly are to converge the desires and the gatherings of the whole family of man. “ The mountain of the Lord's house having been established on the top of the mountains, all nations shall flow unto it;"4 and the Lord's prophecy be fulfilled, “ I, if I be lifted up, shall draw all men to me. The blessedness thence resulting is to be universal. The creature, delivered from the bondage of corruption, is to experience the glorious liberty of the children of God: the water of life from the throne of God diffusing its blessings over the world, and the leaves of its trees being for the healing of the nations. And as “the knowledge of the Lord now covers the earth, as the waters cover the sea," 6 and holiness and peace and joy every where blend together, the Lord shall again rejoice in his works ; ? yea shall joy over them with singing, and rest in his love. It shall be his sabbatism, after the accomplishment of that work that He has ever since the creation, conjointly with the Father, been engaged

9-his work, his mightiest work, of redemption.

in ;

1 Jude's expression, “The angels that kept not their first estate,” implies their having been once in a state of probation. And where then ? The researches of the geologist leave no reasonable doubt of our earth's having been inhabited by animals, at least, in a pre-Adamitic age; and why not then by intelligent creatures also ? Which supposition being admitted as at least possible, does it seem likely that some other distant planet was the scene of the inhabitation and trial of these earlier probationists, and not our own ? Especially considering that the organic pre-Adamitic remains that abound indicate violent death to have prevailed then as now; and by probable consequence sin, the cause of violence and death :-considering also that the internal fires of this earthly planet (see pp. 108–110, and p. 228 suprà) seem not obscurely marked out in prophecy as the scene of the rebellious spirits' future punishment; of their punishment, as if previously of their crime?

? The Author of the Book of Wisdom compares their bright and fitful appearances with the flashings of fire-sparks, (see the Note, p. 207.) or perhaps of the firefly. We may rather compare them with Christ's appearances after his resurrection.—This rule of the glorified saints is not however to the exclusion of angels. See John i. 51. 3 Such in Scripture is often the meaning of alv. 4 Isa. ii. 2.

5 John xii. 32.
6 Isa. xi. 9.
7 Psalm civ. 31.

8 Zeph. iii. 17. • John v. 17; “My Father worketh hitherto, and I work :"viz. I conceive, in the work of redemption ; carried on alike on sabbaths and all other days.

For with reference to God's resting, which is sometimes spoken of in Scrip

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