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çoul amongst the exquisite sufferings of soch a tedions execution, rather Chan renounce his religion, or blaspheme his Sariour. Sach trials seen lo us above the strength of human nature, and able to over bear duty, reason, faith, conviction, day, and the most absolute certainty of a future state. Humanity anasisted in an extraordinary manner, must have shaken off the present pressure, and have delivered itself out of such a dreadful distress, by any means that could have been suggested to it. We can easily ima, gine, that many persons, in so good a cause, might have laid down their lives at the gibbet, the stake, or the block : bat to expire leisurely amongst the most exquisite tortores, when they might come out of them, even by a mental reservation or an hypocrisy, which was not without a possibility of being followed by repentance and forgiveness, has something in it so far be. yond the force and natural strength of mortals, that one cannot but think there was some miracalous power to support the sufferer.

We find the church of Smyrna in that admirable letter which gives az account of the death of Poycap their beloved bishop, mentioning the cruel torments of other early martyrs of Christianity, are of opinion, that our Saviour stood by them in a vision, and personally conversed with them, to give them strength and comfort during the bitterness of their long contin ued agonies; and we have the story of a young man, who having suffered mady tortures, escaped with life, and told his fellow Christians, that the pain of them had been rendered tolerable, by the presence of an angel who stood by him wiped off the tears and sweat, which ran down his face whilst he lay under his fufferings. We are assured, at least, that the first Martyr for Christianity was encouraged in his last moments, by a vision of that divine Person, for whom he suffered, and into wbose presence he was then hastening

There are predictions of our Saviour recorded by the evangelists, which #ere not completed till after their deaths, and bad no likelihood of being so, when they were pronounced by the blessed Saviour. Such was that won derful notice he gave them, that they should be brought before governors and kings for bis sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles, Mat. *. 18. with the other like prophecies, by which he foretold that his disciples were to be persecuted.

Origen insists with great strength, on that wonderful prediction of our Saviour concerning the destruction of Jerusalem, pronounced at a time as he observes, when there was no likelihood nor appearance of it. This, has been taken notice of and inculcated by so many others, that we shall refer you to what this father has said on the subject in his first book against Celsus. And as to the accomplishment of this remarkable prophecy, shall only observe, that whoever reads the account given as by Josephus, with, out knowing his character, and compares it with what our Saviour fore, told, would think the historian had nothing else in view but to adjust the event to the prediction.

The ancient Christians were so entirely persuaded of the force of our, Saviour's prophecies and of the punishment which the Jews had drawn upon themselves, & upon their children : for the treatment which the Messiah had received at their bands, that they did not doubt they would always remain an abandoned & dispersed people, & hissing and an astonishment amongst the nations, as they are to this day. In short, that they had lost their peculiarity of being God's people, which was now transferred to the body of Christians, and which preserved the church of Christ amongst all the conflicts, difficulties, and persecutions in which it was engaged, as it had preserved the Jewish government and economy for so many'ages, whilst it had the same truth and vital principle in it, notwithstanding it was so frequently in danger of being utterly abolished and destroyed. Origen, in his fourth book against Celsus, mentioning their being cast out of Jero"salem, to which their worship was annexed, deprived of their temple and sacrifice, their religious rites and solemnities, and scatterd over the face of


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