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thousand, Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer. Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples”-SPECIMENS—“ and they are written for our admonition, on whom the ends of the world are come.??. They were great public judgments inflicted on great public sins, and recorded for the admonition of all the world in the ages to come, just as much so as when God had mercy upon Paul, it was to show in the ages to come the exceeding riches of his grace, in his kindness towards us by Christ Jesus.' I see not how these principles and conclusions can be rejected without subverting the whole of divine revelation-and melan-' choly it is, that many by whom other lessons were once zealously taught, are now labouring for their, miserable ends to overthrow them. We feel persuaded that in so doing they are fighting against God.
Having thus clearly established the principle, that " the things that were written aforetime were aforetime written for our learning,” let us now proceed to ascertain what they do teach in regard to God's dealings with nations.
1. We find that they are dealt with on the same principles on which God'deals with individuals. That is to say, they are the subjects of commands-of rewards and punishments-of promises and threatenings—of blessings and curses-of pardon and final condemnation-of repentance and forgiveness --of prayer and turning to God. I find no manner of difference in the language in which they are addressed. They are placed under the same obligations, incur the same responsibilities; and like principles, and like conduct, produce the same results in their happiness or their misery, the forfeiture or continuance of their blessings. Religion and virtue, impiety and vice, produce the very same effects on them as they do in the individual; and that, let it be observed, not by the mere multiplication of the same characters or acts in individuals, but, as we shall afterwards show,
in their united corporate capacity; as for instance, a nation suffering for the crimes of its rulers, and rulers punished for the crimes of the subjects, 2 Sam xxi. 1. 66 Then there was famine in the days of David three years, year after year; and David inquired of the Lord. And the Lord answered, It is for Saul, and for his bloody house, because he slew the Gibeonites.” There is one distinction, not indeed in principle, but in circumstance--and that is, that nations, or men united in a corporate capacity, as the subjects of human government, are temporal institutions or beings so to speak; and in a national capacity, the rewards or punishments are not eternal. Yet, in one sense, the punishment or the reward is the same in principle, namely, that the blessing or the curse extends to all time of the nations' being. When they serve God, he will not utterly take his love from them-and when they rebel, they will be." utterly wasted.”
Thus, for instance, we find such general-statements as these, “ Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord;" perfectly the same announcement in principle, as “ blessed is the man that feareth the Lord.” “Righteousness exalteth a nation, but sin is the reproach of any people;" the same in principle, as "godliness has promise of the life that now is, as well as of that which is to come.” God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day. (Job xxxiv. 24.) When he (God) giveth quietness, who then can make trouble? And when he hideth his face, who then can behold him? Whether it be done against a nation or a man only?” Jer. ii. 17:.“ Hast (thou not procured this unto thyself, in that thou hast forsaken the Lord thy God, when he led thee by the way? 19. Thine own wickedness shall correct thee, and thy backslidings shall reprove thee: Know, therefore, and see that it is an evil thing and bitter, that thou has forsaken the Lord thy God, and that my fear is not in thee, saith the Lord God of hosts." This language read by itself, is entirely addressed to an individual or person, and yet, looking to the context, we find it is addressed to
no other person than the nation," Israel.”. Hence, though some may affect to be unable to comprehend it, and try to cast their silly and sophistical ridicule over it, there is perfect propriety in the language of those who speak of the state as à “moral person, who possesses an understanding and will peculiar tó herself, and is susceptible of obligations and rights;" and as such, we shall find that God deals with nationis.
· How then does God deal with individuals? Every one can answer, that he commands them to love, honour, and serve him upon pain of his displeasure if they disobey, and the continuance of his favour if they comply with all their heart. This I may take for granted. Did he thus deal with the Jews! We affirm that he did. When he brought that people out of Egypt by a mighty hand, and outstretched arm -when he did drive out the heathen and planted them, or rather before he had actually fulfilled his promise to Abraham, that he would give to his seed the land in which he had been a sojourner, even when he had not so much as to set his foot on; he revealed his laws, and demanded homage and obedience from the nation as a body, as well as from every individual of it. Then we find that God having solemnly revealed the moral, ceremonial, and judicial law; thus addressed the Israelites. Deut. iv. 1-8: “ Now therefore hearken, O Israel, unto the statutes, and unto the judgments, which I teach yoù, for to do them, that ye may live, and go in and possess the land which the LORD God of your fathers giveth you. Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you. ·. Your eyes have seen what the LORD did because of Baal-peor: for all the men that followed Baal-peor, the LORD thy God hath destroyed them from among you. But ye that cleave unto the Lord your God are alive every one of you this day. Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments, even as the LORD my God commanded me, that ye should do so in the land whither . ye go to possess it. Keep therefore, and do them: for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these státutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people. For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the LORD' our God is in all things that we call upon him for? And what nation is there so great, that hath statutes and judgments so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day?" Here then God enjoins upon the nation the same law, of love and service to God and man that he enjoins upon individuals. This is so plain, that he that runs may read—such is the law; and we find, ...2. That the promise and the threatening, the blessing and the curse, run parallel with the command. This is set forth in most striking express terms in Deut. xxviii. 2–13: And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God. Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed shalt thou be in the field. Blessed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy ground, and the fruit of thy cattle, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep. Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store. Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out. The Lord shall cause thine enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten before thy face: they shall come out against thee one way, and flee before thee seven ways, „The Lord shall command the blessing upon thee in thy storehouses, and in all that thou settest thine hand unto; and he shall bless thee in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee. The Lord shall establish thee an holy people unto himself, as he hath sworn unto thee, if thou shalt keep the commandments of the Lord thy God, and walk in his ways. And all people of the earth shall see that thou art called by the name of the Lord; and they shall be afraid of thee. And the Lord shall make thee plenteous in goods, in
the fruit of thy body, and in the fruit of thy cattle, and in the fruit of thy ground, in the land which the Lord sware unto thy fathers to give thee. The Lord shall open unto thee his good treasure, the heaven to give the rain unto thy land in his season, and to bless all the work of thine hand: and thou shalt lend unto many nations, and thou shalt not borrow. And the Lord shall make thee the head, and not the tail; and thou shalt be above only, and thou shalt not be beneath; if that thou hearken unto the commandments of the Lord thy God, which I command thee this day, to observe and to do them.” On the other hand, the curse is set forth, Deut. xxviii. 15—68: “But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes, which I command thee this day, that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee. Cursed shalt thou be in the city, and cursed shalt thou be in the field,” &c. We have similar declarations in Levit. xxvi.; Deut. iv. 40: 66 Thou shalt keep therefore his statutes, and his commandments, which I command thee this day, that it may go well with thee, and with thy children after thee, and that thou mayest prolong thy days upon the earth, which the Lord thy God giveth thee, for ever-v. 32, 33.—Ye shall observe to do therefore as the Lord
your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left. Ye shall walk in all the ways which the Lord your God hath commanded you, that ye may live, and that it may be well with you, and that ye may prolong your days in the land which ye shall possess."
Such are the commands and sanctions. Is there any proof that they were peculiar, applicable only to the Jews, but not applicable to any other nations? The words themselves convey no such intimation_" hearkening unto the voice of the Lord their God,” had assuredly nothing in it peculiar; and no possible reason can be assigned, why, the moral laws which bound the Israelites should not bind other nations, and that the curse should not in like manner follow. Is there any