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ting the sentence which his impatience ture, and behold in mystic shadows the
and unbelief had provoked, he spake as redemption of humankind, could not
though there were one spot which he associate, as we ourselves can, various
specially wished to be permitted to be- scenes with the various transactions in
hold. "I pray thee, let me go over, and which sinners have interest, he might
see the good land that is beyond Jor- at least connect the whole land of Ca-
dan, that goodly mountain, and Leba. naan with the promised rescue of our
non. " "That goodly mountain ”——were race, and regard all its spreadings as
his thoughts on Mount Moriah, where "holy ground," like that which sur-
Abraham had offered up Isaac, and rounded the burning bush in Horeb.
which was to be the scene of a sacri. And as we ourselves, carrying with us
fice of which this had been only a fi- the remembrance of all that was done
gure ? Was it Zion on which he was " for us men and for our salvation,"
eager to gaze, as knowing, that, on a might feel that to visit Judea would be
far distant day, it would be hallowed to strengthen our faith and warm our
by the footsteps, and witness the sor- piety-seeing that dead indeed must
rows of the prophet, whose coming he be the heart which would not beat
had himself been commissioned to fore- higher in the garden of Gethsemane,
tel? Indeed, we again say, we can and on the mount of Calvary--so may
hardly think that it was simply the Moses, borne onward by the prophetic
wish of beholding the rich landscape impulse, have felt that it would be to
of Canaan, its fountains and brooks, awaken loftier emotions, and obtain
and olives and vines, which actuated clearer views, to enter and walk the
Moses when imploring permission to land which was finally to be consecra-
pass over Jordan. He knew that in this ted by the presence of the Shiloh.
land was to be accomplished the origi- For this it may have been that the
nal promise; that there was the seed lawgiver so intently longed to pass the
of the woman to bruise the serpent's Jordan. And when he stood on the
head. He knew that in this land would summit of Pisgah, and God showed
that Deliverer appear for whom patri- him the land, it may have been by the
archs had longed, and of whom he was revelation of mysteries, which he had
himself a signal type-the Deliverer in ardently desired to penetrate, that his
whom he felt that all his hopes centred, spirit was cheered, and death stripped
but whose office and person could be of all terror. He looked from the
only feebly learned from revelations al mountain-top o'er many a luxuriant
ready vouchsafed. And why may it not scene; but as plain, and vineyard, and
have been, that Moses longed to tread town, and river, were made to pass be-
Canaan, because his mind already peo- fore his view, God, who is expressly
pled it with the august occurrences of declared to have been with him to in-
coming ages? even as to ourselves struct him, may have taught him how
would Palestine be a scene of surpass- each spot would be associated with the
ing interest, not because its mountains great work of human deliverance. His
may be noble, and its valleys lovely; eye is upon Bethlehem; but, lo, alrea-
but because haunted by the memory of dy a mystic star hangs over the solita-
all that is precious to a christian, be- ry village; and he learns something of
cause every breeze would there seem the force of the prediction which him-
to us to wast the words of Christ, and self had recorded, " There shall come
every flower to be nurtured with his a star out of Jacob, and a sceptre shall
blood, and every spot to be hallowed rise out of Israel.” The waters of a
by his presence? To Moses it must lake are heaving beneath him; but, lo,
have been through anticipated, where a human form is walking the agitated
as to us it would be through remem- surface; and he is taught that as No-
bered events, that the land of Judea ah, whose history he had related, was
might thus preach by its every hill, sheltered in the ark, so shall all, who
and fountain, and tree. But the trains will turn from iniquity, find safety in
and processions of prophecy were as Being whom no storms can overwhelm,
splendid, though not as distinct, as are and no waves ingulph. And now
now those of history; and if the law- mountain is seen, but not lit up, as
giver, privileged to search into the fu. the panorama had hitherto been, by

a

the joyous shinings of the sun; aw- tain, and behold the land of Canaan, ful clouds hang around it, and over it, and die there, and be gathered unto as though it were the scene of some thy fathers.” tragedy which nature shrank from be- And there did Moses die; his spirit holding. This rivets the lawgiver's entered into the separate state, and no gaze; it is the "goodly mountain" human friends were near to do the last which he had prayed that he might honors to his remains. But God would see. And there is a cross upon its not desert the body, any more than the summit; greater than Isaac is bound soul of his servant; both were his by to the altar; the being, whom he had creation, and both were to become seen upon the waters, is expiring in doubly his by redemption. It is thereagony. The transactions of the great fore added to the strange narrative-day of atonement are thus explained; and perhaps it is the strangest fact of the mystery of the scape-goat is un- all—that " he buried him in a valley in folded; and Moses, taught the mean the land of Moab, over against Bething of types which himself had been peor; but no man knoweth of his sedirected to institute, is ready to ex- pulchre unto this day." Wonderful claim, "Lord, now lettest thou thy entombrient! no mortal hands dug the servant depart in peace, for mine eyes grave, no mortal voices chanted the have seen thy salvation.”

requiem ;; but angels,"ministering spiThus it may have been, that, ere rits,” who are appointed to attend on Moses departed out of life, God not the heirs of salvation, composed the only showed him the promised land, limbs, and prepared the sepulchre. We but made it a kind of parable of re- refer to angels this performance of the demption. And, on this supposition, last rites to the departed prophet, bewe may well understand why Moses cause it appears from another, though was so eager to see Canaan before he obscure, passage of Scripture, that andied, and why the sight should have gels were in some way the keepers of been instrumental to the making him the body; for we read, in the General die happy. Yes, I cannot but feel, as I Epistle of Jude, of " Michael the archfollow Moses in thought to the sum- angel, when contending with the devil, mit of Pisgah, that the man of God he disputed about the body of Moses." does not climb that eminence, merely Why this special mystery and carefulthat he may gladden his eye with a ness in regard of the body of Moses? glorious developement of scenery, and It has been supposed, that prone as the satisfy himself, by actual inspection, of Israelites were to idolatry, they might the goodliness of the heritage which Is have been tempted, had they known rael was about to possess. And when I the sepulchre of their great lawgiver, find that God himself was with this to make it the scene of superstitious greatest of prophets, to assist his vis- observances. But this seems at least ion, and inform him as to the territo- an insufficient supposition, more espery which lay beneath his fect, I cannot cially since the place of burial, though think that the divine communication not the exact spot, was tolerably dereferred only to the names of cities, fined, a valley in the land of Moab and the boundaries of tribes. Rather over against Bethpeor;" quite defined must I believe that what Moses sought, enough for superstition, had there been. and God vouchsafed, was fuller know- any wish to give idolatrous honors to ledge of all that would be wrought in the remains of the dead. Canaan for the pardon of sin; that, as But you will all remember that Mo. Bethlehem, and Nazareth, and Tabor, ses, though he must die before enterand Zion, graved themselves on the ing Canaan, was to rise, and appear in picture, it was their association with that land, ages before the general rethe promised Messiah which gave them surrection. When Christ was transfiguinterest in the eye of the delighted red on Mount Tabor, who were those spectator; and that, therefore, it was shining forms that stood by him, and literally to prepare Moses for death, "spake of the decease which he should by showing him" the Resurrection and accomplish at Jerusalem ?” Who but the Lise,” that God spake unto him, Elias and Moses-Elias, who had been saying, "Get thee up into this moun- translated without seeing death, so that

upon this.

he had entered, body and soul, into and possess that good land which God heaven; and Moses, who had indeed hath prepared for his people. Theredied, the soul having been separated fore, we may believe, was it appointed from the body, but whose body had that there should be a change of leadbeen committed to angelic guardian-ers, that all may know, thut, if the law, ship, as though in order that it might acting through terrors, bring a man be ready to take part in the brilliant out of the slavery of sin, it is only the transaction upon Tabor ? The body, Gospel, rich in merciful provision, which had been left upon Pisgah, reap- which can open for him an entrance peared upon Tabor; and evidence was into the kingdom of heaven. Moses given, that those who lie for ages in was commanded to resign the people the grave, shall be as glorious, at the to Joshua : "The very acts of God," second coming of Christ, as those who says Bishop Hall, "were allegories; are to be changed "in a moment, in where the law ends, there the Savior the twinkling of an eye.” Moses was begins; we may see the land of prothe representative of the myriads who mise in the law; only Jesus, the Meshall rise from the grave; Elias, of diator of the New Testament, can those, who, found alive upon the earth, bring us into it.” shall be transformed without seeing Thus does Moses instruct us, by his death; and forasmuch as the represen- death, to whom to look for admission tatives appeared in equal splendor, so into the heavenly Canaan. He instructs also, we believe, shall the quick and us moreover as to how we must be pladead, when all that was typified by the ced, if our last hours are to be those of transfiguration shall be accomplished hope and peace. We must die on the in the preliminaries to the general summit of Pisgah: we must die with judgment.

our eye upon Bethlehem, upon GethBut we have no space to enlarge semane, upon Calvary. It was not, as

We must pass from the we have ventured to suppose, the glomysterious death and burial of Moses, riousness of the Canaanitish landscape and ask you whether you do not see which satisfied the dying leader, and that there are great spiritual lessons in nerved him for departure. It was rathe series of events which we have ther his view of the Being by whom briefly reviewed? We need not tell that landscape would be trodden, and you that the captivity of Israel in who would sanctify its scenes by his Egypt was a striking representation of tears and his blood. And, in like manthe moral condition of the whole hu- ner, when a christian comes to die, it man race, as sold by sin into the ser- is not so much by views of the majesvice of a task-master. And when the tic spreadings of the paradise of God, chains of the people were broken, and of the rollings of the crystal river, and God brought them forth" by a mighty of the sparklings of the golden streets, hand, and a stretched out arm," the that he must look to be comforted: his whole transaction was eminently ty- eye, with that of Moses, must be upon pical of our own emancipation from the manger, the garden, and the cross; bondage. But why might not Moses, and thus, fixing his every hope on his who had commenced, be allowed to Forerunner, he may be confident that complete the great work of deliver- an entrance shall be ministered unto ance? Why, after bringing the people him abundantly, into the kingdom out of Egypt, might he not settle them prepared from the foundation of the in Canaan? Why, except that Moses world." "Get thee up into this mounwas but the representative of the law, tain, and die there." O that we may and that the law, of itself, can never | all be living in such a state of preparlead us into heavenly places ? The law edness for death, that, when summonis as "a schoolmaster, to bring us unto ed to depart we may ascend the sumChrist;" it may discipline us during mit, whence faith looks forth on all our wanderings in the wilderness; but that Jesus hath suffered and done, and, is, when we reach the Jordan, there exclaiming, "we have waited for thy

no Joshua, no Jesus—for the salvation, O Lord,” lie down with Monames are the same—to undertake to ses on Pisgah, to awake with Moses in be our guide, we could never go over paradise.

were

SERMON VII.

THE ASCENSION OF CHRIST.

« Lift up your heads, 0 ye gates ; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors, and the King of glory shall

come in. Who is this King of glory! The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighiy in battle.''Psalm 24:7, 8.

We hardly know how it has come to scended, and take his seat at the right pass, that comparatively but little at: hand of God. But as, in discoursing on tention is given to the great fact of the resurrection of Christ, we strive to Christ's ascension into heaven. Christ- show you our personal interest in that mas-day, Good-Friday, and Easter-day, event, arguing our own resurrection are universally observed by members from that of our Head; so will we enof our church; but Holy Thursday is deavor, in discoursing on the ascension, scarcely known, even by name, to the to consider the occurrence in its beargreat mass of christians. The church ings on ourselves: for such bearings evidently designed to attach as much undoubtedly there are, seeing that Št. importance to that day as to the others, Paul declares to the Ephesians, that having appointed proper psalms as well God " hath quickened us together with as lessons, and furnished a sacramental Christ, and hath raised us up together, preface. We have come, however, to and made us sit together in heavenly the neglecting this ordinance of the places in Christ Jesus.” church, so that, whilst we statedly as- It is generally admitted, by exposisemble to commemorate the birth, tors of the writings of David, that the death, and resurrection of our Lord, words of our text have a secondary, if we have no solemn gathering in cele- not a primary, reference to the return bration of his ascension. And if this of the Mediator to heaven, when he had have not arisen from men's attaching accomplished the work of human retoo little importance to the ascension, demption. By many, the Psalm, of it is, at least, likely to lead to their which our text is a part, is supposed to thinking less of that event than it de- have been written and sung on occaserves, or than is required for it by the sion of the removal of the ark by Dachurch. On this account, forasmuch vid to Jerusalem; it may have been as we have just passed Holy Thurs- also employed when that ark was carday, we think it well to direct your at- ried into the magnificent temple which tention to the closing scene of Christ's Solomon had reared. The Levites may sojourn upon earth, so that, having be regarded as approaching in solemn stood round his cradle, followed him procession, bearing the sacred deposito Calvary, and seen him burst from tory of sacramental treasures. As they the grave, we may complete the wond- approach the massive gates, they claim rous contemplation by gazing upon him admission for the King of glory, who as he soars from Mount Olivet. of was perpetually to dwell between the course it will not be the mere histori. cherubim that should overshadow the cal fact on which we shall enlarge: for ark. "Lift up your heads, O ye gates, we may assume that you require no and be ye

up, ye everlasting doors, evidence, that, as Jesus died and re- and the King of glory shall come in.” vived, so did he return in human na- The keepers of the gates are supposed ture to the heaven whence he had de to hear the summons, and they demand

lift

from within, " Who is this King of glo- had not fought, may be considered as ry?" The answer is, " The Lord strong exultingly requiring his admission into and mighty, the Lord mighty in bat- the heavenly city, shall-men be silent, tle :" and then we are to imagine the men for whom he had suffered, men for ponderous gates thrown open, and the whom he was about to intercede ? Ragorgeous throng of priests and Levites ther let us take on our own lips the pressing towards the recesses of the summons to the gates and everlasting sanctuary

doors; and, as we stand with the AposBut if such were the transaction to tles, gazing upwards at the ascending which the Psalm originally referred, Savior, let us exclaim, in a voice of it may well be regarded as typical; gladness and triumph, “Lift up your whilst eertain of the expressions, such heads, Oye gates, and be ye lift up, ye as "ye everlasting doors," seem evi- everlasting doors, and the King of glodently to belong to no earthly house, ry shall come in.' however sumptuous and solid. In short, What, you will say, are we to reas Bishop Horsley affirms, the Jehovah joice in the departure of our Lord from of this psalm must be Christ; and the his Church? It may well be understood entrance of the Redeemer into the why angels should utter the words of kingdom of his Father is the event our text. Angels were delighted at the prophetically announced. The passage return of that Divine Person, who had is very sublime, when thus interpreted emptied himself of his glories, and and applied.* You are to consider the withdrawn himself for a time, so far Mediator as ascending towards heaven, as Deity could be withdrawn, from the attended by a multitude of the celes- scene where he had been wont to show tial host. The surrounding angels min-them his greatness. To angels, theregle their voices in a chorus, which fore, the ascension was indeed cause summons their glorious compeers, who of lofty gratulation ; we might well exare within the heavenly city, to open pect them to manifest their gladness, wide the gates, that the triumphant Sa- to throng joyously round the returnvior may enter. The angels within the ing Redeemer, and to usher him, with city may be regarded as thronging to every token of exultation, into the its walls, wondering who this could be house of his Father. But assuredly the that approached in human form, and case is very different with us. The as. yet claimed admission into the imme- cension of Christ was his withdrawdiate presence of God. They ask the ment from all visible intercourse with name of the ascending man, for whom his church; that church has ever since was demanded entrance to their own been in comparative widowhood; and bright abode. The answer is a refer- the return of her Lord is the grand ence to his achievements upon earth, event with which she is taught to aswhere he had "spoiled principalities sociate what will be most brilliant in and powers," and "made a show of her portion. Must we then be glad at them openly." "The Lord strong and the departure of Christ; and, as though mighty, the Lord mighty in battle.” we wished him to be hidden from our And then you are to suppose the ever- sight, must we summon the gates of lasting doors to revolve, and that, amid the heavenly city, and bid them fly the enraptured adorations of the whole open that the King of glory may enter 3 celestial hierarchy, he who had been It is in the answer to such a ques.

a man of sorrows,” and who "bare tion as this that we shall find matter our sins in his own body on the tree,” of important and interesting discourse. advances to the throne of God, and There are indeed other aspects under takes his seat there as Head over all which the ascension may be surveyed, things to the Church.”

and furnish to our contemplation truths It is in this manner that our text of no ordinary kind. But the great may be applied to the great event with thing for our consideration, is, the perwhich we now propose to engage your sonal interest which we ourselves have attention. And if angels, for whom in the ascension of Christ, the cause Jesus did not die, and whose battle he which that event furnishes for our grati.

tude and rejoicing. To this, therefore, Seo Bishop Horue.

we shall strictly confine ourselves; so

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