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Verse 7.-“And the multitude of all the nations that war against Ariel, even all that fight against her and her munitions, and that distress her, shall be as a dream of a night vision.”
In a dream and night vision men are persuaded they see plain, when there is nothing in reality.
Verse 8.-"It shall even be as when an hungry man dreameth, and behold, (he conceits) he eateth, but he awaketh, and his soul is empty; or as when a thirsty man dreameth, and behold he drinkech, (he thinks he drinks,) but he awaketh, and behold, he is faint, and his soul hath appetite; so shall the multitude of all the nations be that fight against Mount Zion.”
In the last two verses, those nations who have fought against Jerusalem are, and have the denunciation of judicial blindness pronounced on them; they think they possess and enjoy what they have not in reality got. But the Prophet will best explain his meaning
Verse 9.-“Stay yourselves, and wonder; cry ye out, and cry: they are drunken, but not with wine; they stagger, but not with
Verse 10._" For the Lord hath poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and hath closed your eyes: the prophets and your rulers, the seers hath he covered.”
Thus we see that it is judicial blindness that is here spoken of ; they have become as drunken, staggering, sleepy, dreaming people, for the crime of fighting against Mount Zion. All the Roman empire, all the Europeans particularly, are here spoken of; the veil is over the whole of them, people, prophets, rulers, and seers.
Verse 11.-"And the vision of all is become unto you as the words of a book that is sealed, which men deliver to one that is learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I cannot, for it is sealed.
Verse 12.-" And the book is delivered to him that is not learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee : and he saith, I am not learned.”
Here we see wherein their blindness was to consist; they would not understand the book of all vision, they cannot comprehend it, because they are judicially blinded ; and we might as well expect of a blind man to distinguish colours, as a ......ian divine, a learned
D.D. a prophet or seer, for in truth they are so, to explain or read what they call the Old Testament; the book of the vision of all ;* it is a sealed book to them, the veil is on their hearts, they dream, they are drunken, they are covered of heart; they think they preach truth, and hold with vanity, and expect salvation, and grasp vexation of spirit. Truly the spiritual man is a fool.
Verse 13.-" Wherefore the Lord said, For as much as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, and their fear towards me is taught by the precepts of men,
We do not deny but ......ians (this people) draw near, or wish to draw near to God; but we say they do not do it acceptably.Their fear of God is the precepts of taught and learned men; from their youth they are taught in the precepts of men, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, &c.; these are the precepts of men, not the command of God.
Verse 14.-" Therefore behold I will proceed to do a marvellous work among this people, even a marvellous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid.”
Truly is the wisdom and understanding of the wise and prudent men among .....ians lost and perished as regards religious affairs. Again I must cry, O, that they were wise; 0, that they understood this; 0, that they would consider their latter end. Is it a wonder that judicially blinded they say others cannot see ? Truly with a beam in their eye, they are for plucking out the mote from the Jew's eye, which they conceit they see there..
Thus I have shown that this quotation, so far from meaning what the writer of St. Mark would have it to intend, the Jews in the days of Jesus, is in truth spoken of the ......ians, the descendants of the
* The denunciation is against the multitude of all nations; that is, the generality of the people, but as there is no general rule without exception, so here we witness in every age a few are endowed with minds sufficiently strong to pierce through the more than Egyptian darkness of error which surrounds them, to the clear light of truth. We behold a Rabbi Itschog, Gerr, and a Gordon, forcing themselves among us.
We every now and then see a Collins, or an English, throwing off the veil of prejudice, and casting it from them as a filthy rag. And we once in an age meet a Simpson, who, by intensity and strength of thought, pierces the caul of dark superstition, and, seeing a bright ray of light beyond the circle of darkness which surrounds them, will cry out, “ we are lost, we must all fall.”
Romans, who fought against, and destroyed Zion and her munitions. This religion of theirs, the ......ian religion, is the drawing near to God with the lips, and honouring him with the mouth, while in truth the heart is removed far from God, being that the fear of God is taught by the New Testament, the precepts of men, and that the inward spirit, which .....ians pretend bears witness within them, is the spirit which benumbs the intellectual faculties, called the spirit of deep sleep, causing them to dream of happiness and felicity they will never enjoy. They thirst, and conceit they swallow copious draughts of spiritual love, but when they awake it will be to real hunger and thirst. Horrid, horrid infatuation!
And now, gentlemen of the American Society for Meliorating the Condition of the Jews, what can you answer to this prophecy? Is it not perfectly fulfilled in you, as we see at this day? Your ostensible purpose is to convert Jews to ......ianity. You wish them to drink of the cup you drink of, and be drunk as you are, to stagger as you do, to dream away their existence, and accept the visitation of the spirit that possesses you, the spirit of deep sleep. Are you not descended from that people who have distressed Ariel ? Have not your fathers, from that period to this our day, slain the children of Ariel ? Your present feelings towards them (the spirit which possesses you apart) we have every reason to believe is philanthropic. You no doubt really mean well, but are you not yourselves under a strong delusion? If ......ianity is not this deep sleep; if you are not the people who have distressed Ariel; if I have not given a true explanation of the prophecy; say ye, what it does signify, what the prophet or holy spirit did mean. I call on you collectively and individually; remember, a bribe is no argument-that you will find wretches enough willing to accept of the price of iniquity no one doubts; and when you have them, poor miserable creatures, they can give you no further assurance of their spiritual standing than yourselves. Are you not each of you answerable to God for seeking the. destruction of his peculiar people? If you do not answer, how is your own standing? Can you, who have brought me to defence, answer to other well-intended and good ......ians for the destruction you are bringing on the ......ian religion? Do you not see the props are falling one at a time from under the building, and that you will finally lose more members by this foolish society of yours, than is gained by all your foreign Missionaries ? But you cannot answer; there is no answer that can be given to controvert any position I have taken ; and you well know that to answer will only basten your fall, as it will show the world your weakness, the weakness of the position you are obliged to hold. However, by your silence you virtually acknowledge your errors, and the frivolity of your pretensions. I must close with the words of the Prophet :
“On whom do ye depend ? against whom make ye a wide mouth, and draw out the tongue? are ye not children of transgression, the seed of falsehood?”—Isaiah lvii. 4.
על מי תתענגו על מי תרחיבו פה תאריכו לשון הלוא אתם ילדי פשע זרע שקר :
Names held in reverence by the world, ought never to be lightly treated of by any. The Rabbies say, “He who is offensive to mankind, is certainly offensive to God;" he, therefore, that speaks irreverently of any one whose memory the world reveres, may well be considered a wicked mail. Moses Mendlesohn was equally respected and honoured, while living, by both .....ians and Jews ; and his name revered by all parties, after his death. The Encyclopedia Britannica thus speaks of him:
“Moses MendLESOHN, a Jewish philosopher, and elegant writer, in the last century, was born at Dessau, in Anhalt, in the year 1729. He was author of several works, which are all very creditable to his talents. His work entitled, Phoedon; a Dialogue on the Immortality of the Soul,' in the manner of Plato, gained him much honour. In this he presents the reader with all the arguments of modern philosophy, stated with very great force and perspicuity, and recommended by the charms of elegant writing. From the reputation which he obtained by this masterly performance, he was entitled by various periodical writers, the Jewish Socrates.' It was translated into French in 1773, and into the English in 1789. He died at the age of 57, highly respected and beloved by a numerous acquaintance, and by persons of very different opinions.
When his remains were consigned to the grave, he received those honours from his nation which are commonly paid to their chief Rabbies.”
The carelessness of the American Society has permitted this excellent man, and pious Jew, to be thus lightly spoken of, in a prepared address delivered before them at their yearly meeting.
“ Here the great Lavater discharged his duty as a minister of the everlasting Gospel. This zealous man, once addressed a letter to a very learned Jewish philosopher at Berlin, by the name of Moses Mendlesohn, on the subject of ......ianity, and no wonder, when in reply he was obliged to hear, among the train of objections which carnal philosophy will produce, the sarcastic question: Is your circumcised friend allowed, by the law, to pay you a visit at Zurich ?" -First Yearly Report, page 32, and Israel's Advocate, No. 7, page 111.
Whether the above misrepresentation of the affair is through inadvertency, ignorance, or intention, it is a felicity to me to be enabled, by a highly valued correspondent, (to whom the Jew is already largely indebted,) to correct the same, and return for the living the due meed of praise to the virtuous dead.
It will be perceived that the excellent Mendlesohn did not write in answer to a letter addressed to him by Lavater, and that he did not make use of a train of reflections which carnal philosophy will produce. Let it speak for itself.
Letter of Moses Mendlesohn, of Berlin, to Deacon Lavater, of Zu
rich, on the receipt of a book entitled, “ Bonnet's Inquiry,” translated from the French into German by Lavater, and dedicated to him, the said Mendlesohn.
REVEREND FRIEND OF MAN,
You have thought proper to dedicate to me “Bonnet's Inquiry into the evidences of ......ianity," which you have translated from the French; and, in the dedication, to conjure me, in most solemn manner, before the eyes of the public, to refute this writing, as far as the essential arguments by which the facts of ..... ianity are supported appear to me ill founded; but so far as I find them just, to do, what prudence, love of truth and integrity command me