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statutes which we find in Deuteronomy against necromancers, whose real or pretended art was exercised in raising and consulting the spirits of the dead, clearly show how well known the doctrines of life æternal were then, not only in Israel, but amongst the surrounding nations * Turning to the recorded fate of Korah, Dathan and Abiramt we again find Hell or Hades f alluded to; the word translated pit in our Bible bearing the same force in the original : If the Lord, (saith Moses) make a new thing, and the earth open her mouth and swallow them up, and all that appertain unto them, and they go down quick into the pit, then shall ye know that these men have provoked the Lord !

The words of the call of Moses, when the Lord spake unto him from the midst of the bush, plainly, as our Saviour pointed out to the Sadducees, asserted that the departed patriarchs were still in being; and these assurances were solemnly repeated, in the very same expressions, in the commencement of all the prophets public missions unto Israel. The ladder in the vision of Jacob, shadowing forth the communications between earth and heaven, repeats the same facts; The Lord stood above it, and said, I AM the God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac. What too was the sin of * Deut. xviii. 10.

+ Num. xvi. | Heb. Viventes in infernum.—1xx. Ewoles aus Ador. Chald. In infernum.-Syriac: Ad inferos.

See P's. lv. (which seems almost a quotation) 15 and 24; the Chaldaic there renders the pit of corruption“ gehenna.”


Esau, which caused his decisive rejection, but that in despising his birthright he derided the promised æternity? That promise of the Lord unto Abraham, In thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed, extended as it is, to every soul of mankind, can only be construed as disclosing life æternal. Death and the curse had fallen upon man; he was to accomplish as an hireling his day of labour and of sorrow: nor has this curse ever been revoked but in two signal instances : whence, or how then, were not only the Israelites, but ALL the families of the earth to be blessed, unless life æternal, through the means which God had devised, was here always understood ? Fear not (said the Lord again unto Abraham,) I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward. Mark well these words ! Moses herein describes the æternal and Almighty Creator as affirming this of HIMSELF! Is this shield then less than ALMIGHTY? Is this exceeding great reward Less than ÆTERNAL? The same strong expression is used, as I have shown, generally and individually, in the law to all the patriarch's descendants, aud it never re. quired more than common faith, and trust in God, to believe, from these extraordinary terms, in life æternal. The offering of Isaac by his father, also, was a circumstance from which the Israelites could not but gather (as the Jewish * historian Josephus did) a firm faith in a future existence. How, too,

* Antiq. Book I. c. xiii. s.9: “ I suppose He thinks thee worthy to get clear of this world," -&c.


were the words of Balaam to be understood : Let me die the death of the righteous, and let my last end be like his? If the righteous and the wicked alike sank æternally to the dust, where was the difference? if theirs was the same doom, or if the wicked had nothing more to fear beyond the grave, from whence arose this soul-breathed wish of the unrighteous prophet? The pang of the departing spirit is the same to all, and Balaam and the Israelities knew, that the righteous too often suffered in this life, and perished even by violent and unnatural deaths. The prophet therefore clearly implied, and the Israelites could not have been ignorant, that the Almighty should be unto his faithful their exceeding great reward, even for ever and ever, and that to them, to die was gain. Was there no great and notorious instance of this fact given in this law upon which the faithful might rest his sure and undoubted trust? Unquestionably there was, in these very same records. By the command of God, Moses assured his people that Enoch*, the immediate forefather of Noab, had been redeemed by his Saviour from death and the grave, as a sure witness of his truth and mercy and righteousness unto all His servants. It is

Jude 14. And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophecied of these, saying, behold the Lord cometh with ten thousand of his saints. 15. To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.

impossible to draw any other conclusion from this fact, then that they all, continuing in obedience, should live by faith through all æternity. Know therefore (saith Moses), that the Lord thy God, He is God, the faithful God, who keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations *. Again, He is God of truth, and without iniquity, just and right is He, all His ways are judgment t. Will God, THE PAITHFUL GOD cast away the perfect, the pure and the upright I? Was the murdered Abel, the righteous Noah, Abraham the friend of God, the miraculously-born Isaac, or Jacob, or Joseph, were any, or all of these, to perish for ever, after the few and evil years of a laborious pilgrimage, in which they earned their bread by the sweat of their brow; or was the everlasting covenant, made with Abraham and his seed for ever, to fail, as regarded the friend of God, with the Patriarch's failing life ? On the contrary, is there not proof enough in the translation of Enoch, without one other instance, when contrasting this fact with the attributes of the Deity, to assure us that the Israelites must have known, that after a life of obedience and faith on earth the servants of their God were to be (in the, perhaps, at the time it was written, well understood spiritual meaning of that often repeated expression) gathered unto their fathers IN PEACE? * Deut. vii. 9.

+ xxxii.

| Job.

Nor should the striking fact, that man, though forbidden to eat of the tree of knowledge, was not restrained from the tree of life until after his fall, (having clearly, as the prophet describes, implied permission to eat thereof in common with the rest of the fruits of Eden) be omitted. From this circumstance we cannot but believe that Moses fully intended to assert, that our first parents were created to be immortal, in the words of the Book of Wisdom, and to be an image of God's own æternity. In this case there can be little doubt that he publicly promulgated life æternal. Contrast this fact with the circumstances of the Fall, the promised Seed, and the consequent institution of atonement by sacrifice, which Adam made by the command of the Deity long before the birth of Abel (for it is recorded that he was clothed with the skins of beasts, forbidden at that period for food, and slain therefore only for sacrifice), and the collected evidence that the first parents were fully aware of a future immortality is too strong to be doubted. The institution at the Fall, of a constant memorial by sacrifice, of the great Atonement, could have been for no other purpose than to show forth the future

recovery of the newly-lost birthright through the Redeemer. Temporal death had irrevocably passed upon mankind, and temporal miseries and earthly punishments which were to endure through man's earthly existence, had been felt in consequence of the Fall, before the natural birth of the

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