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soul to Christ and heaven? May God forgive us as a Church and Nation for doing so little for His kingdom and honour, and pour out largely upon us the Spirit of grace and of supplication !
Then shall His servants willingly offer themselves for this and every Christian work; His kingdom come; and His name alone be exalted.
April 18, 1866.
"PEACE UNTO THE HEATHEN."
“He shall speak peace unto the heathen: and his dominion shall be from sea even to sea, and from the river even unto the ends of the earth.”—Zech. ix. 10.
THERE are few prophecies of the Old Testament that more obviously refer to the person, and mission, and kingdom of the Messiah, than that contained in the words now read. Even if there were no certain evidence that the Son of God and His blessed work were foretold in this chapter, we could have little hesitation in referring both the words of the text and several other passages before and after them, only to Him and it. As the ninth verse, for instance, “Rejoice greatly, 0 daughter of Zion; shout, o daughter of Jerusalem : behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass ;” and the eleventh and twelfth, “As for thee also, by the blood of thy covenant I have sent forth thy prisoners out of the pit wherein is no
water. Turn you to the stronghold, ye prisoners of hope: even to day do I declare that I will render double unto thee." The first of these
The first of these passages is quoted by St. Matthew and St. John, as fulfilled when our Lord triumphantly entered the holy city, under the very circumstances here foretold; Jesus riding on an ass—an animal still used by persons of distinction in the East, as we find it had been by Abraham, the sons of the Judges, Ahithophel, and others, from the earliest times—and a very great multitude spreading theirgarments and strawing palm-branches in the way, and “they that went before and that followed, crying, Hosanna to the Son of David : Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord ; Hosanna in the highest !” Thus literally was the first prediction fulfilled, and the last, which also relates to Israel, will assuredly, in its time, receive as full and blessed an accomplishment; when the veil shall be taken from their hearts, and when, as we are told by St. Paul, “All Israel shall be saved." The blood of their covenant was shed by their guilty forefathers, and for eighteen centuries they have been prisoners in the pit of God's displeasure, wherein is no water; but still “ prisoners of hope," waiting, longing, and praying for their Messiah, on whose return they shall receive double, and the days of their mourning shall be ended. But the words of the text, dear brethren, refer to