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the earth. (3.) That it was to be subsequently to the Mosaic dispensation, when a root of Jesse shall stand for an ensign to the nations, and to it the Gentiles shall seek. But no restoration under the gospel dispensation has yet taken place; therefore it is yet future.”
These three points I admit; and will now show that the promise is to be fulfilled in a state of future blessedness and glory.
1. It was to be fulfilled, not when the rod out of the stem of Jesse became the Mediator of the world, but when he became the Judge. Isa. xi. 1-4: “ With righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth; and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.” But this separation and destruction of the wicked is not to take place until the end of the world. Matt. xiii.
2. It was to be fulfilled when a state of perfect peace and purity existed all over the earth. See from verse 5th io 9th. “ They shall not hurt or destroy in all my holy mountain ; for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.” Such a state we are not to look for until, at the coming of the SON OF Man, the dominion under the whole heaven is given to him. Then will be introduced the “GLORIOUS REST" promised verse 10th, and not before. But, · 3. The Gentiles as well as Jews are to share in that glory; and for all the nations, as well as for Israel and Judah, the ensign is to be set up. From these considerations, it is evident this text predicts a state of everlasting glory in the kingdom of God; and thus perfectly harmonizes with the original promise to the patriarchs.
Passing over, for the sake of brevity, several texts in Jereiniah, the next which will claim altention is the 36th and 37th chapters of Ezekiel. This prophecy is decidedly the clearest and strong. 'est passage in the Bible, bearing on this point. And if the doctrine of a literal and temporal gathering of the Jews to Palestine is taught in the Bible, it is in those two chapters. The following are some of the promises in the abovenamed chapters.
Ezek. xxxvi. 8, 10 : “But ye, O mountains of Israel, ye shall shoot forth your branches, and yield your fruit to my people Israel; for they are at hand to come. For, behold, I am for you, and will turn unto you, and ye shall be tilled and
the house of Israel, even all of it. And I will setile you after your old estates.”
Again; verses 24 and 28: "For I will take you from among the heathen, and will gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land.” “And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave unto your fathers, (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob,) and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God." ;
Once more; chap. xxxvii. 21, 22: “And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God, behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and will bring them to their own land; and I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel, and one king shall be king to them all,” &c.
As the above texts are the strongest evidence the Bible affords of the return of the Jews to Palestine; so, also, when taken in connection with their context, are they a conclusive argument that God will fulfil his ancient promise to the patriarchs, in the resurrection state, and in a world of everlasting blessedness.
This fact is very clearly illustrated in the 27th chapter, where the prophet was presented with a vision of a valley full of dry bones, and was asked if those bones could live. He was then commanded to prophesy to them, “and say, 0 ye dry bones, hear the word of the Lord.” So he prophesied as he was commanded, first to the bones, on which they came together, and flesh and sinews covered them; then he prophesied to the wind to breathe on them, “and they lived, and stood upon their feet, an exceeding great army.”,
The vision was then explained, and the prophet was told what those bones and their resurrection represented. The bones represented the whole house of Israel. Their revivification represented, not a mystical, but a literal resurrection of “the whole house of Israel” “ from their graves,” verses 11, 14. “ Thus saith the Lord God, Behold, O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel ; and ye shall know that I am the Lord, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves, and shall put my Spirit in you, and ye shall live,” &c. I know it is said this is only a strong figure, to denote the utter desolation to wbich the Jews have been brought; and also to express the magnitude of the work
of their restoration; that it is as great as it would be to raise them from their graves.
But I deny the right thus to dispose of the subject : there is not a precedent in the Bible for such an interpretation. I admit that the first ten verses are a figurative representation of some future event; but the four succeeding verses give a true and literal exposition of the meaning of those figures. Dan. viii. 20, is an example of the same mode of communicating prophetic knowledge. The ram which thou sawest, hav. ing two horns, are the kings of Media and Persia." The 3d and 4th verses of Dan. viii. were figurative or symbolical representations of future events ; but the twentieth verse is a literal explanation of these symbols. So in the present case; the first ten verses represent, by symbols, what was to come in futurity, and the four succeeding verses explain literally and truly what those symbols mean.
Examples of the same kind might be multiplied to any desirable extent; and among them all we shall not find a single instance, where the explanation does not give the literal meaning of the symbols. “ The whole house of Israel” are therefore to be raised “from their graves, and brought into their own land ;" “ the land which God promised to their fathers,” &c. But who are The “ Israel” to whom this promise is made ? Not all the literal seed of Jacob; "for they are nit all Israel, who are of Israel ;" that is, the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God. But the children of the promise are accounted for the seed, Rom. ix. 6, 8. “The house of Israel " and "the seed of Abraham" are, therefore, all the children of God, in or by faith
in Jesus Christ. At the second coming of Christ, then, all that are his shall be raised from the dead; “ For if ye are Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.” Gal. iii. 2, 9.
That the prophecy refers to AN ETERNAL STATE, is clear from such expressions as the following:
“And they shall dwell in the land that I have given unto Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, even they and their children's children, FOREVER; and my servant David shall be their prince FOREVER.” Verse 25.
“ Moreover, I will make a covenant of peace with them ; it shall be AN EVERLASTING covenant with them; and I will place them and multiply them, and I will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore," verse 26. The eternity of that state can be expressed no more fully than in those texts. They cannot have their fulólment in time, however long the period. And it is equally evident that the prophecy is to have its accomplishment in the heavenly world. Let the following verse, Ezek. xxxvii. 27, “ My TABERNACLE also shall be with them; yea, I will be their God, and they shall be my people,” be compared with Rev. xxi. 3: “ And I heard a great voice out of heaven, saying, Behold, THE TABERNACLE OF GOD is 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.” If this last text introduces us to an eternal state, so also does the former; for the one cannot be fulfilled without accomplishing the other. And it can be shown with equal clearness, that every