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so ; for the blood of bulls and of goats could not take away sins: the cattle upon a thousand hills. could not make an atonement for one sinner. There is indeed no visible relation, in the eye of human reason, between the death of a sheep and the pardon of sin: but that Christ, a perfect man, the accepted and beloved son of God, should shed his blood to save our souls; in that there is so much sense, that it is the very wisdom and the power of God.
It has been made a question, by those who question every thing, whether sacrifices were of divine institution. But sacrifices are descriptive$ and as the thing described is the redemption of man by the shedding of the blood of Christ, which never could be known but by revelation', the supposition, that sacrifice could be of human invention, is an absurdity. It is as if we were to imagine, that words could be invented by those, who had no knowledge of things; or that signs could be brought into use without any prior idea of the things signified* The knowledge of a redeemer was first given to man; and the observation of sacrifice was the expression of that knowledge by a significant act. All mankind were derived from these to whom thisknowledge was first given; and therefore all nations of the world, in all times of the world, 4 did did in some form or other retain the observation of sacrifice, for the putting away of sin.
The third character under which the Son of God was foreshewn to us under the law, is that of a conqueror. As Joshua, whose name is also called Jesus in the Epistle to the Hebrews, Christ was to become the captain of our salvation; to subdue our spiritual enemies, and put us into possession of the heavenly Canhaan. The person of Joshua, and his acts, and the effects of his commission, are all descriptive of the things to be accomplished by the true Jesus.— He was the successor of Moses, as the gospel Cometh after the law; and carried into effect what the law could not accomplish, but only exhibited in prospect; as Moses died on Mount Nebo, with only a distant view of the Holy Land. After the death of Moses, a new generation of people, under the command of Joshua, were conducted to many signal victories, which opened a way to the promised inheritance, that* rest which was to put a period to their wanderings in the wilderness. As the Saviour of the Hebrews, he was honoured with that very name which was afterwards given to him, who came after Moses, to be the Saviour of the world. Joshua knew- the excellence of that
* Chap. iv. 8.
country to which he was leading the people, and encouraged them to press forward to the enjoyment of it, through all the dangers of which they were afraid. The land, says he, is an exceeding good land: if the Lord delight in us then he will bring us into this land and give it us, a land which floweth with milk and honey •—fear ye not the people of the land, for they are bread for us; their defence is departed from them, and the Lord is wit/} us. And so it came to pass; the mighty inhabitants of the land fled before them, and the walls of Jericho fell down flat, after the priests had encompassed it with the ark, and blown with the rams horns, as they had been commanded. All this was fulfilled at the wonderful propagation of the gospel under the conduct of Jesus Christ. The powers of the world were all against it; but the sound of the gospel from the mouths of the apostles prevailed against them all. Weak and contemptible as the means mrght appear which God had appointed, the end was answered. Idolatry was overpowered: Satan was cast o ut of his strong holds, which he had so long possessed in peace; and the kingdom of the world became the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ. Here it is a wonderful thing to consider, that Vol. iv. Y the
the Canaanitish nations, who possessed the land promised to the people of God, were all Idolaters, or Gentiles as they are called, such as the Roman empire and all the kingdoms of the world were before the establishment of Christianity. This circumstance is taken notice of and applied in the apology of St. Stephen against the Jews. Our fathers, said he, had the tabernacle of witness in the wilderness—which also our fathers that came after brought in with Jesus into the possession of the Gentiles. The tabernacle of God was transferred to the Gentiles, and there established under Joshua; to signify in a figure, that the church, under Jesus Christ, should be transferred from the Jews to the Gentiles. The first set of people who came out of Egypt, rebelled against Moses, and refused to hear the exhortation of Joshua: so they died in their unbelief, and their carcases were 'left in the wilderness. But those who came after (as St. Stephen words it) the successors of that disobedient generation, entered with the tabernacle into the possession of the Gentiles; as the new children of Abraham, who came after the apostate Jews, followed the true Jesus, when his religion was translated into the heathen world.
The time is yet to be expected, when every
power power of this world and the other shall fall before him. As those wicked Canaanites were driven out of their land, when the measure of their iniquities was filled up; so shall the wicked be driven out of the earth, when that vengeance of God shall overtake them, which they have so long held in contempt and defiance. The world itself shall be surrounded by the Son of God, as the Captain of our Salvation, and the army of saints and angels which shall attend upon him at his coming. The last trumpet shall sound, and the world shall be overthrown, as Jericho fell flat, when it had been compassed about seven days by the priests and ministers of God. When the priests blew, as they were commanded, at the time appointed, and all the people shouted with a great shout, (Josh. vi. 5.) the fortifications of that proud city sunk at once into a heap of ruins. With reference to which history, we are reminded that the L ord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout (1 Thess. iv. 16.) with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God.