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treasures collected on this occasion were to be used in the Lord's Sanctuary. Besides as Egypt and her proud king had forfeited all pretensions to God's bounty, by an open defiance of His power, we cannot wonder that He should deprive them of the riches of which they were so utterly unworthy.
With what joy must the Israelites have seized the long wished-for opportunity of escaping from such barbarous oppressors!
Rameses was the chief city in Goshen; Succoth was about twelve miles from it; here ihe Israelites stopped to review their company.
The mixed multitude are supposed to have been strangers of different nations, who lived in Egypt; and who, having seen the wonders, which were wrought for the deliverance of the Israelites, resolved to accompany them, with a view to the improvement of their own fortune.
To sanctify, signifies to set apart for holy purposes; it was very proper, that the Israelites should have a religious Rite, to call to their remembrance the great mercy of God, in sparing their first born, when those of Egypt were destroyed; and that they should inform their sons of this memorable deliverance, and endeavour to excite in their minds love and reverence towards the great Author of it. In respect to keeping the passover, the Jews have been so far obedient to God's command, that they have never abolished it; nay, those who have lived since the promulgation of Christianity, have b.en particularly tenacious of this Rite; and, believing that the Redeemer is not yet come, of whom the Paschal Lamb was a type, they still continue to observe the solemnity, as well as their present circumstances will admit of The manner of their keeping it is this. On the sabbath day previous to the passover, the Jews have a sermon preached in their synagogue
gogue on the paschal lamb; and two days afterwards all their furniture must be washed clean.; they search their houses that no leavened bread may be found, and are extremely scrupulous in making up the unleavened bread. Most commonly the master of the house makes it; and if any of it falls to the ground, the dogs and cats are not suffered to eat it. It must be kneaded in a place where the sun does not shine; and the cake, which used formerly to be given to the priests, is burned to ashes.
They are obliged to sit at a table like persons in haste to begin a journey, in memory of their departure from Egypt. The master of the family is surrounded by his children and domestics, when some cakes and part of a lamb are set before them; they are then served with a composition of fruits, in a pie, made in the form »f a brick, in remembrance of the bricks made by their ancestors in Egypt. They afterwards eat bitter herbs, in remembrance of the bitterness of Egyptian bondage* and the shoulder of a lamb being held up in a dish, the master of the house repeats the following words: Behold the bread of sorrow and oppression, <iuhich our fore* fathers did once eat in Egypt; let him that is hungry draw near and sat; this is the sacrifice of the paschal lamb. This ceremony being over, a hymn is sung by all the company present: and when they come to that part, mentioning the ten plagues of Egypt, they pour a little wine on the ground, wishing that. those plagues may be far removed from them: then they , drink off the wine, and finish the hymn. The master of the house then washes his hands in clean water, and breaking one of the cakes, presents a part of it to each of the guests i this being done, they begin to eat the lamb i and what is left must be burnt; and the ceremony ^concludes with a glass of wine.
In this account of the method, in which the modern Q 3 Jews Jews celebrate the passorer, we may observe a great re> semblance of the original institution; and when we consider in what a wonderful manner the Jews, who were formerly a large united body of people, hare been dispersed, and what obstructions their religion hath met with, it is astonishing to think, that they have preserved any of their ceremonies.
The feast of the passover * was calculated to furnish an incontestable proof to succeeding generations, that such an event, as the deliverance of Israel, had happened, because It must have been ordained in the lifetime of those who had escaped from the Egyptian bondage; for, however their descendants might have listened to fabulous tales, they never could have believed that they themselves had, from their very infancy, observed a ceremony in commemoration of a thing, of which they had never before heard ; nor would Moses have been so foolish as to attempt to introduce this rite in remembrance of imaginary transactions, and to appeal to the knowledge and experience of six hundred thousand men, each of whom could have proved him an impostor. '••
W* find, from this section, that the lives of children »re in the hand of God; and that he can in an instant of time frustrate the ambitious views of those, who think only of the worldly prosperity of their offspring. It should therefore be the tender parent's care, to live a Jife of piety himself, and to dedicate, from the earliest infancy, not only his frst born, but every dear child, which is given him, to the service of God, as Christians have the blessed opportunity of doing, in the sacrament of baptism, without excluding them from the commoa offices of life. i»
* Lesley's plain and easy Method with the J^»s.
SECTION SECTION LXVIII.
THE ISRAELITES~FASS THROUGH THE RED SEA TUB
From Exodus, Chap. xiii. and xiv.
And it came to pass, when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God led them not through the way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near ; for God said, Lest peradventure the people repent when they see .war, and they return to Egypt.
But God led the people about, through the way of the wilderness of the Red Sea. And the children of Israel went up, harnessed*, out of the land of Egypt.
And Moses took fhe bones of Joseph with hiia; for he had straitly sworn the children of Israel, saying, Go u .will surely visit you, and ye shall carry up my bones away hence with you.
And they took their journey from Succoth, and encamped in Etham, in the edge of the wilderness.
And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them in the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night.
He took not away the pillar of the cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people. And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
Speak unto the children of Israel that they turn and encamp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea, over against Baal-zephon: before it shall ye encamp by v the sea.
For Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel, They
* Or five in a rauk. Margin of the Bible.
are intangled in the land, the wilderness hath shut them in.
And 1 will harden Pharaoh's heart, that he shall follow after them : and I will be honoured upon Pharaoh, and upon all his host; that the Egyptians may know that I am the Lord. And they did so.
And it was told the king of Egypt that the people fled: and the heart of Pharaoh and of his servants was turned against the people, and they said, Why have we done this, that we have let Israel go from serving us?
And he made ready his chariot, and took his people with him. And he took six hundred chosen chariots, and all the chariots of Egypt, and captains over every one of them. .,
And the Lor D hardened the heart of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and he pursued after the children of Israel: and the children of Israel went out with an high hand.
But the Egyptians pursued after them, (all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, and his horsemen, and his army), and overtook them encamping by the sea, beside Pi-hahiroth, before Baal-zephon.
And when Pharaoh drew nigh, the children of Israel lifted up their eyes, and behold the Egyptians marched after them; and they were sore afraid; and the children of Israel cried out unto the Lord.
And they said unto Moses, Because there were no graves in Egypt, hast thou taken us away to die in the wilderness; wherefore hast thou dealt thus with us, to carry us forth out of Egypt?
Is not this the word that we did tell thee in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians i for it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.
And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will