« EelmineJätka »
the marriage of Nebuchadnezzar, son of Nabo Resuming the thread of the history; this alpolassar, with Amytis, daughter of Astyages, liance which the Jews had contracted with united their forces against the Assyrians, then Egypt, augmented their confidence at a time the most ancient and formidable power, took when every consideration should have abated Nineveh, their capital, and thus, by a peculiar it; it elevated them with the presumptuous nodispensation of Providence, they accomplish- tion of being adequate to frustrate the designs ed, and without thinking so to do, the pro- of Nebuchadnezzar, or rather those of God phecies of Jonah, Nahum, and Zephaniah, himself, who had declared that he would subagainst that celebrated empire.
jugate all the east to this potentate. He preFrom that period the empire of Nineveh sently retook from Pharaoh Nechoh, Carcheand of Babylon formed (again) but one, the mish, and the other cities conquered by that terror of all their neighbours, who had just prince. He did more; he transferred the war grounds of apprehension soon to experience a into Egypt, after having associated Nebuchadlot like that of Nineveh.
his son, in the empire; and after variThis induced Pharaoh Nechob, king of ous advantages in that kingdom, he entered on Egypt, who, of all the potentates of the east, the expedition against Judea, recorded in the was the best qualified to resist those conque- 37th chapter of the Second Book of Chronirors, to march at the head of a great army, cles; he accomplished what Isaiah had foreand make war with a prince, who for the fu- told to Hezekiah, that the Chaldeans " should ture, to use the expression of a prophet, was take his sons, and make them eunuchs in Babyregarded as "the hammer of all the earth,” lon,” Isa. xxxix. 7. He plundered Jerusalem; Jer. 1. 32. Pharaoh took his route through he put Jehoiakim in chains, and placed his Judea, and sent ambassadors to king Josiah, to brother Jehoiachin on the throne, who is somesolicit a passage through his kingdom. Jo- times called Jeconiah, and sometimes Coniah; siah's reply to this embassy, even to this day, and who availed himself of the grace he had astonishes every interpreter; he took the field, received, to rebel against his benefactor. This he opposed the designs of Nechoh, which prince quickly revenged the perfidy; he beseemed to have no object but to emancipate sieged Jerusalem, which he had always kept the nations Nebuchadnezzar had subjugated, blockaded since the death of Jehoiakim, and and to confirm those that desponded through he led away a very great number of captives fear of being loaded with the same chain. Jo- into Babylon, among whom was the prophet siah, unable to frustrate the objects of Nechoh, Ezekiel. was slain in the battle, and with him seemed Ezekiel was raised up of God to prophesy to expire whatever reinained of piety and to the captive Jews, who constantly indulged prosperity in the kingdom of Judah.
the reverie of returning to Jerusalem, while Pharaoh Nechoh defeated the Babylonians Jeremiah prophesied to those who were yet in near the Euphrates, took Carchemish, the capi- their country, on whom awaited the same destal of Mesopotamia, and, augmenting the plea- tiny. They laboured unanimously to persuade sure of victory by that of revenge, he led his their countrymen to place no confidence in victorious army through Judea, deposed Je- their connexion with Egypt; to make no more hoabaz, son of Josiah, and placed Eliakim, his unavailing efforts to throw off the yoke of Ne brother, on the throne, whom he surnamed Je- buchadnezzar; and to obey the commands of hoiakim, 2 Kings xxiii.
that prince, or rather the commands of God, From that period Jehoiakim regarded the who was wishful, by his ministry, to punish king of Egypt as his benefactor, to whom he the crimes of all the east. was indebted for his throne and his crown. He Our prophet was transported into Jerusalem; believed that Pharaoh Nechoh, whose sole au- he there saw those Jews, who, at the very time thority had conferred the crown, was the only while they continued to flatter them with avertprince that could preserve it. The Jews at ing the total ruin of Judea, hastened the event, once followed the example of their king; they not only by continuing, but by redoubling their espoused the hatred which subsisted in Egypt cruelties, and their idolatrous worship. At the against the king of Babylon, and renewed with very crisis while he beheld the infamous conNechoh an alliance the most firm which had duct of his countrymen in Jerusalem, he heard ever subsisted between the two powers. God himself announce the punishments with
Were it requisite to support here what the which they were about to be overwhelmed; sacred history says on this subject, I would il- and saying to his ministers of vengeance, lustrate at large a passage of Herodotus, who, “Go through the city; strike, let not your eye when speaking of the triumph of Pharaoh spare, neither have ye pity: Slay utterly old Nechoh, affirms, that after this prince had ob- and young, both maids and little children; and tained a glorious victory in the fields of Me- women.-Defile my house, and fill the courts giddo, he took a great city of Palestine, sur- with the slain,” ix. 5—7. But while God de. rounded with hills, which is called Cadytis: livered a commission so terrible with regard to there is not the smallest doubt but this city the abominable Jews, he cast a consoling rewas Jerusalem, which in the Scriptures is of gard on others; he said to a mysterious person, ten called holy by way of excellence; and it “Go through the midst of the city, and set a was anciently designated by this glorious title. mark on the foreheads of the men that sigh, Now, the word holy, in Hebrew, is Keduscha, and that cry for the abominations committed and in Syriac Kedulha. To this name Hero- in the midst thereof." I am grieved for the dotus affixed a Greek termination, and called honour of our critics, who have followed the Kadytis the city that the Syrians or the Arabs Vulgate version in a reading which disfigures call Kedutha, which, correspondent to my as the text; " set the letter thau on the foreheads sertion, was the appellation given to Jerusalem. I of those that sigh.” To how many puerilities
has this reading given birth? What mysteries | 1. He deplores the carnage which stained have they not sought in the letter thau? But Judea with blood: “The priests and the prothe Vulgate is the only version which has thus phets have been slain in the sanctuary of the read the passage. The word thau, in Hebrew, Lord. The young and the old lie on the implies a sign; to write this letter on the fore- ground in the streets; my virgins and the head of any one, is to make a mark; and to young men are fallen by the sword: thou hast imprint a mark on the forehead of a man, is, slain; thou hast killed, and hast not pitied in the style of prophecy, to distinguish him by them in the day of thine anger. Thou hast some special favour. So the Seventy, the convened my terrors, as to a solemn day," chap. Arabic, and Syriac, have rendered this expres- ii. 20—22. sion. You will find the same figures employed 2. He deplores the horrors of the famine by St. John, in the Revelation.
which induced the living to envy the lot of The words of my text have the same import those that had fallen in war: “ The children as the above passage; they may be restricted and the sucklings swoon in the streets; they to the Jews already in captivity; I extend them, say to their mothers, when expiring in their however, to the Jews who groaned for the bosom, where is the corn and the wine? They enormities committed by their countrymen in that be slain with the sword are happier than Jerusalem. The past, the present, and the fu- they that be slain with hunger. Have not the ture time, are sometimes undistinguished in women eaten the children that they suckled? the holy tongue; especially by the prophets, to Naturally pitiful, have they not baked their whom the certainty of the future predicted children to supply them with food?" chap. ii. events, occasioned them to be contemplated, 11, 12. 20; iv. 9, 10. as present, or as already past. Consonant to
3. He deplores the insults of their enemies: this style, “I have cast them far off among the “All that pass by clap their hands at thee; heathen,” may imply, I will cast them far off; they hiss and shake their heads at the daughter I will disperse them among the nations, &c. of Jerusalem, saying, Is this the city called the
To both those bodies of Jews, of whom I persection of beauty, the joy of the whole have spoken, I would say, those already cap- earth?" chap. ii. 15. tivated in Babylon when Ezekiel received this 4. He deplores the insensibility of God himvision, and those who were led away after the self, who formerly was moved with their calatotal ruin of Jerusalem, that however afflictive mities, and ever accessible to their prayers: their situation might appear, God would me “Thou hast covered thyself with a cloud that liorate it by constant marks of the protection our prayers should not pass through: and when he would afford. Though I may or have I cry and shout, he rejecteth my supplication,” cast them far off among the heathen; and chap. iii. 44. 8. among the countries; though I may disperse 5. He deplores the favours God had conferthem among strange nations; yet I will be to red, the recollection of which served but to them as a little sanctuary in the countries render their grief the more poignant, and their where they are come.”
fall the more insupportable: " Jerusalem in This is the general scope of the words we the days of her affliction remembered all her have read. Wishful to apply them to the de- pleasant things that she had in the days of old, sign of this day, we shall proceed to draw a How doth the city sit in solitude that was full parallel between the state of the Jews in Baby- of people? How is she that was great among lon, and that in which it has pleased God to the nations become a widow, and she that was place the churches whose ruin we have now princess among the provinces become tribudeplored for forty years. The dispersion of the tary?" chap. i. 7. 1. Jews had three distinguished characters.
6. Above all, he deplores the strokes level1. A character of horror;
led against religion: “The ways of Zion do II. A character of justice;
mourn because none come to the solemn feasts: III. A character of mercy.
all her gates are desolate: her priests sigh; her A character of horror; this people were dis- virgins are afflicted. The heathen have enterpersed among the nations; they were compel- ed into her sanctuary; the heathen concerning led to abandon Jerusalem, and to wander in di: whom thou didst say, that they should not vers countries. A character of justice; God enter into thy sanctuary," chap. i. 4. 10. himself, the God who makes “judgment and These are the tints with which Jeremiah justice the habitation of his throne,” Ps. Ixxxix. paints the calamities of the Jews, and making 15, was the author of those calamities; “ I have those awful objects an inexhaustible source of cast them far off among the heathen; and dis- tears; he exclaims in the eloquence of grief; persed them among the countries.” In fine, a "Is it nothing to you, all ye that pass by? Becharacter of mercy: “though I have cast them hold, and see, if there be any sorrow like unto far off among the heathen, I have been,” as my sorrow which is done unto me, wherewith we may read, "I will be to them as a little the Lord hath afflicted me in the day of his sanctuary_in the countries where they are fierce anger. For this cause I weep, mine eye, come.” These are the three similarities bo- mine eye runneth down with tears, because tween the dispersed Jews, and the reformed, to the Comforter that should relieve my soul is whom these provinces have extended a com- far from me. Zion spreadeth her hands, and passionate arm.
there is none to comfort her. Mine eyes fail I. The dispersion of the Jews, connected with tears: whom shall I take to witness for with all the calamities which preceded and fol- thee; to whom shall I liken thee, O daughter lowed, had a character of horror: let us judge of Jerusalem; to whom shall I equal thee to of it by the lamentations of Jeremiah, who at- console thee, o daughter of Zion, for thy lested, as well as predicted the awful scenes. breach is great -0 wall of the daughter of
Zion, let tears run down like a river day and confirming those in the truth who we had innight: give thyself no rest, let not the apple structed from our infancy. Sometimes they of thine eye cease. Arise, cry out in the night: prohibited the pastors from exercising the miin the beginning of the watches pour out thine nisterial functions for more than three years in heart like water before the Lord,” chap. i. 12. the same place.* Sometimes they forbade us 16, 17; ii. 11. 13. 18, 19.
to print our books;† and sometimes seized those But is all this a mere portrait of past ages, already published. Sometimes they obstructor did the Spirit of God designate it as a ed our preaching in a church: sometimes from figure of ages that were to come! Are those doing it on the foundations of one that had the calamities of the Jews that Jeremiah has been demolished; and sometimes froin worendeavoured to describe, or are they those shipping God in public. At one time they which for so many years have ravaged our exiled us from the kingdom; and at another, churches! Our eyes, accustomed to contem- forbade our leaving it on pain of death. plate so many awful objects, have become in. Here you might have seen trophies prepared capable of impression. Our hearts, habituated for those who had basely denied their religion, to anguish, are become insensible. Do not there you might have seen dragged to the priexpect me to open the wounds that time has sons, to the scaffold, or to the galleys, those already closed; but in recalling the recollection who had confessed it with an heroic faith: yea, of those terrific scenes which have stained our the bodies of the dead dragged on hurdles for churches with blood, I would inquire whether having expired confessing the truth. In anthe desolations of Jerusalem properly so called, other place you might have seen a dying man or those of the mystic Jerusalem be most en at compromise with a minister of hell, on pertitled to our tears. May the sight of the cala- sisting in his apostacy, and the fear of leaving mities into which we have been plunged excite his children destitute of bread; and if he inade in the bosom of a compassionate God, emo not the best use of those last moments that the tions of mercy! May he in crowning the mar- treasures of Providence, and the long-suffering tyrs, extend mercy to those that occasioned of God, yet afforded him to recover from his their death.
fall. In other places, fathers and mothers I am impelled to the objects which the tearing themselves away from children, consolemnities of this day recall to your minds, cerning whom the fear of being separated from though I shou!d even endeavour to dissipate them in eternity made them shed tears more the ideas; I would say, to the destruction of bitter than those that flowed on being separatour churches, and to the strokes which have ed in this life. Elsewhere you might have been levelled against our religion. The colours seen whole families arriving in Protestant counJeremiah employed to trace the calamities of tries with hearts transported with joy, once Jews, cannot be too vivid to paint those which more to see churches, and to find in Christian have fallen on us. One scourge has followed communion, adequate sources to assuage the another for a long series of years, “ One deep anguish of the sacrifices they had made for its has called unto another deep at the noise of enjoyment. Let us draw the curtain over his water-spouts,” Ps. xlii. 7. A thousand and those affecting scenes. Our calamities, like a thousand strokes were aimed at our unhappy those of the Jews, have had a character of churches prior to that which rased them to the horror; this is a fact; this is but too easy to ground! and if we may so speak, one would prove. They have had also a character of have said, that those armed against us were justice, which we proceed to prove in our senot content with being spectators of our ruin; cond head. they were emulous to effectuate it.
II. That public miseries originate in the Sometimes they published edicts against crimes of a chastened people, is a proposition those who foreseeing the impending calamities that scarcely any one will presume to deny of the church, and unable to avert them, sought when proposed in a vague and general way; the sad consolation of not attesting the scenes.* but perhaps it is one of those whose evidence Sometimes against those who having had the is less perceived when applied to certain pribaseness to deny their religion, and unable to vate cases, and when we would draw the conbear the remorse of their conscience, bad re- sequences resulting from it in a necessary and covered from their fall. Sometimes they pro- iminediate manner: propose it in a pulpit, and hibited pastors from exercising their discipline each will acquiesce. But propose it in the cabion those of their flock who had abjured the net; say, that the equipment of feets, the levy truth. Sometimes they permitted children at of armies, and contraction of alliances, are the age of seven years to embrace a doctrine, feeble barriers of the state, unless we endeain the discussion of which they affirm, that your to eradicate the crimes which have eneven adults were inadequate to the task.Ś At kindled the wrath of Heaven, and you would one time they suppressed a college, at another be put in the abject class of those good and they interdicted a church.|| Sometimes they weak sort of folks that are in the world. I do envied us the glory of converting infidels and not come to renew the controversy, and to inidolaters; and required that those unhappy vestigate what is the influence of crimes on people should not renounce one kind of idola- the destiny of nations, and the rank it holds iry but to embrace another, far less excusable, in the plans of Providence. Neither do I apas it dared to show its front amid the light of pear at the bar of philosophy the most scruputhe gospel. They envied us the glory also of lous and severe, and at the bench of policy the
most refined and profound, to prove that it is * The edict of August, 1689. Declaration against the relapsed, May 1679.
July 9th, 1685. June 1680. June 1681. il January 1683.
Sept. 6th, 1685. July 30th, 1680.
not possible for a state long to subsist in splen- says, “ healed the hurt of his people slightly, dour which presumes to derive its prosperity saying, peace, peace, when there was no peace;" from the practice of crimes. For,
vi. 14; and who were so far from suppressing Who is he that will dare to exclaim against the licentiousness of the wicked, as to make it a proposition so reasonable, and so closely con- their glory to surpass them! It would be renected with the grand doctrines of religion; quisite to describe the awful security which in and which cannot be renounced without a the midst of the most tremendous visitations stroke at the being of a God, and the superin- infatuated them to say, “ We have made a cotendence of a Providence? a man admitting venant with death, and with hell we are at those two grand principles, and presuming to agreement," Isa. xxviii. 15. It would be remake crimes subservient to the support of so- quisite to trace those sanguinary deeds, which ciety, should digest the following propositions. occasioned that just rebuke, “ In the skirts of There is indeed a God in heaven, who has thy robe is found the blood of the innocent constituted society to practise equity; to main poor,” Jer. ii. 34. It would be requisite to extain order; and to cherish religion; he has con- bibit those scenes of idolatry, which made a nected its prosperity with these duties; but by prophet say, “Lift up thine eyes on the high the secrets of my policy, by the depths of my places, and see where thou hast been lien with. counsels, by the refinement of my wisdom, 1 O Juda, thy gods are as many as thy cities," know how to elude his designs, and avert his ii. 28; iii. 2. It would be requisite to speak of denunciations. God is indeed an Almighty that paucity of righteous men, which occasionBeing whose pleasure has a necessary connex- ed God himself to say, “Run ye to and fro ion with its execution; he has but to blow with through the streets of Jerusalem, and see now his wind on a nation, and behold it vanishes and know, and seek ye in the broad places away; but I will oppose power to power; I will thereof, if ye can find a man, if there be any force his strength;* and by my fleets, my armies, that executeth judgment, that seeketh truth, my fortress, I will elude all those ministers of and I will pardon it,” v. i. vengeance. God has indeed declared, that he But instead of retracing those awful recolis jealous of his glory; that soon or late he will lections, and deducing from them the just exterminate incorrigible nations; and that if application of which they are susceptible, from the nature of their vices there proceed it would be better to comprise them in that not a sufficiency of calamities to extirpate general confession, and to acknowledge when them from the earth, he will superadd those speaking of your calamities what the Jews unrelenting strokes of vengeance which shall confessed when speaking of theirs: “The Lord justify his Providence; but the state, over is righteous, for I have rebelled against him. which I preside, shall be too small, or perhaps Certainly thou art righteous in all the things too great to be absorbed in the vortex of his that have happened, for thou hast acted in commanding sway. It shall be reserved of truth, but we have done wickedly. Neither Providence as an exception to this general rule, have our kings, our prioces, our priests, nor and made to subsist in favour of those very our fathers, kept thy law, nor hearkened unto vices, which have occasioned the sackage of thy commandments, and to thy testimonies other nations. My brethren, there is, if I may wherewith thou didst testify against them,” presume so to speak, but a front of iron and Lam. i. 18; Neh. ix. 34. brass that can digest propositions so daring,
III. But it is time to present you with oband prefer the system of Hobbs and of Ma-jects more attractive and assortable with the chiavel to that of David and of Solomon. solemnities of this day. The calamities which
But what awful objects should we present to fell upon the Jews, and those which have fallen your view, were we wishful to enter on a de-on us; those calamities which had a character tail of the proofs concerning the equity of the of justice; yea, even a character of horror, strokes with which God afflicted the Jews; had also a character of mercy; and this is what and especially were we wishful to illustrate the is promised the Jews in the words of my text: conformity found in this second head, between “Although I have cast them far off among the the desolations of those ancient people, and heathen, and among the countries; yet I will those of our own churches?
be to them as a little sanctuary in the countries To justify what we have advanced on the where they are come.” Whether you give first head, it would be requisite to investigate these words," as a little sanctuary,”a vague, many of their kings, who were monsters rather or a limited signification, all resolves to the than men; it would be requisite to describe the same sense. If you give them a limited imhardness of the people who were wishful that port, they refer to the temple of Jerusalem, the ministers of the living God, sent to rebuke which the Chaldeans had destroyed, and which their crimes, might contribute to confirm them was the emblem of God's presence in the therein; and who, according to the expression midst of his people. “I have dispersed them of Isaiah," said to the seer, see not; and to among the heathen;" I have deprived them of those who had visions, see no more visions of their temple, but I will grant them supernatuuprightness; speak unto us smooth things, rally the favours I accorded to their prayers prophecy deceit. Get you out of the way, once offered up in the house, of which they turn aside out of the path, cause the Holy One have been deprived. In this sense St. John of Israel to cease from before us,” xxx. 10, 11. said, that he "saw no temple in the new JeIt would be requisite to exbibit the connivance rusalem, because God and the Lamb were the of many of their pastors, who, as Jeremiah temple thereof,” Rev. xxi. 22. If you give
these words an extended import, they allude * The versions vary very much in reading; Isaiah to the dispersion.“ Although I have cast them xxvii. 5. Vide Poh Synopsis Crit. in loc.
off among the heathen, and put them far
away" from the place of their habitation; yet | Scripture seems to favour this notion; and I will be myself their refuge. Much the same though Tertullian and Eusebius presume to is said by the author of the xcth psalm; Lord, say that Esdras had retained the sacred books “thou hast been our retreat, or refuge, from in memory, and wrote them in the order in one generation to another.” But without a which they now stand; notwithstanding all minute scrutiny of the words, let us justify the this, we think ourselves able to prove that the thing:
sacred trust never was out of their hands. It 1. Even amid the carnage which ensued on appears that Daniel read the prophets. The the taking of Jerusalem, many of the princi- end of the second book of Chronicles, which pal people were spared. It appears from the has induced some to conclude that Cyrus was sacred history, that Jeremiah was allowed to a proselyte, leaves not a doubt that this prince choose what retreat he pleased, either to re- must have read the xlivth and xlvth chapters main in Babylon,* or to return to his country. of Isaiah, where he is expressly named, and to He chose the latter; he loved the foundations this knowledge alone we can attribute the of Jerusalem, and of his temple, more than extraordinary expressions of his - first edict. the superb city; and it was at the sight of “The Lord God of heaven hath given me all those mournful ruins, that he composed those the kingdoms of the earth; and he has charged Lamentations, from which we have made me to build him a temple in Jerusalem," many extracts, and in which he has painted in | 2 Chron. xxxvi. 23. the deepest tints, and described in the most 5. God wrought prodigies for the Jews, pathetic manner, the miseries of his nation. which made them venerable in the eyes of
2. While some of the Jewish captives had their greatest enemies. Though exiles; though liberty to return to their country, others were captives; though slaves of the Chaldeans, they promoted in Babylon to the most eminent of were distinguished as the favourites of the fices in the empire. The author of the second Sovereign of the universe. They made the Book of Kings says, that Evil-inerodach “ lifted God of Abraham to triumph even in the midst up the head of Jehoiachin out of prison-and of idols; and aided by the prophetic Spirit, set his throne abuve the throne of the kings they pronounced the destiny of those very that were with him in Babylon.” Jeremiah kingdoms in the midst of which they were disrepeats the same expression of this author, persed. Like the captive Ark, they hallowed 2 Kings xxv. 28; Jer. lii. 32; and learned men ihe humiliations of their captivity by symbols have thence concluded, “that Jehoiachin of terror. Witness the flames which conreigned in Babylon over his own dispersed sumed their executioners. Witness the dreams subjects.” Of Daniel we may say the same; of Nebuchadnezzar, and of Belshazzar interhe was made governor of the province of Baby- preted by Daniel, and realized by Providence: lon by Nebuchadnezzar, “and chief of the witness the praises rendered to God by idolagovernors over all the wise men,” Dan. ii. 48. trous kings: witness the preservation of Daniel Darius conferred many years afterward the from the fury of the lions; and his enemies same dignities on this prophet; and Nehemiah thrown to assuage the appetites of those ferowas cupbearer to Artaxerxes.
cious beasts. 3. How dark, how impenetrable soever the 6. In a word, the mercy of God appeared history of the seventy years may be, during so distinguished in the deliverance accorded to which time the Jews were captive in Babylon, these same Jews, as to convince the most init is extremely obvious, that they had during credulous, that the same God who had deterthat period some form of government. We mined their captivity, was he also who had have explained ourselves elsewhere concern- prescribed its bounds. He moved in their ing what is meant by the Æchmalotarks; that behalf the hearts of pagan princes! We see is, the chiefs or princes of the captivity. We Darius, and Cyrus, and Artaxerxes, become, ought also to pay some attention to the book by the sovereignty of Heaven over the heart of Susanna: I know that this work bears va- of kings, the restorers of Jerusalem, and the rious marks of reprobation, and that St. Je- builders of its temple! Xenophon reports, rome, in particular, regarded it with so much that when Cyrus took Babylon, he commandcontempt as to assure us, in some sort, that it ed his soldiers to spare all who spake the Sy. would never have been put in the sacred ca- rian tongue; that is to say, the Hebrew nation; non had it not been to gratify a brutish people. and no one can be ignorant of the edicts isMeanwhile, we ought not to slight what this sued in favour of this people. book records concerning the general history of Now, my brethren, nothing but an excess of the Jews: now we there see, that during the blindness and ingratitude can prevent the seecaptivity, they had elders, judges, and sena- ing and feeling in our own dispersion those tors; and if we may credit Origen, too much marks of mercy, which shone so bright in the prejudiced in favour of the book of Susanna, dispersion of the Jews. How else could we it was solely to hide the shame of the princes have eluded the troops stationed on the fronof their nation that the Jews had suppressed it. tiers of our country, to retain us in it by force,
4. God always preserved among them the and to make us either martyrs or apostates? ministry, and the ministers. It is indubitable What else could excite the zeal of some Prothat there were always prophets during the testant countries, whose inhabitants you saw captivity; though some of the learned have going to meet your fugitives, guiding them in maintained, that the sacred books were lost the private roads, and disputing with one anoduring the captivity; though one text of ther who should entertain them; and saying,
“Come, come into our houses, ye blessed of * It appears, below, that Saurin thought Jeremiah and the Lord?” Gen. xxiv. 31. others returned from Babylon!
Whence proceeds so much success in our