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stumble : for I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my firstborn. Hear the word of the LORD, O ye nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, He that scattered Israel will gather him, and keep him, as a shepherd doth his flock. For the Lord hath redeemed Jacob, and ransomed him from the hand of him that was stronger than he. Therefore they shall come and sing in the height of Zion, and shall flow together to the goodness of the Lord, for wheat, and for wine, and for oil, and for the young of the flock and of the herd : and their soul shall be as a watered garden ; and they shall not sorrow any more at all. Then shall the virgin rejoice in the dance, both young men and old together: for I will turn their mouriing into joy, and will comfort them, and make them rejoice from their sorrow. And I will satiate the soul of the priests with fatness, and my people shall be satisfied with my good. ness, saith the Lord, 15 Thus

15 All misery among the faithful saith the LORD; A voice was shall one day cease. Rachel, the heard in Ramah, lamentation,

mother of both people and bitter weeping ; Rachel through her sons Joseph and Ben

jamin, shall be amply compensated weeping for her children re

for the long travail of her soul, when fused to be comforted for her she shall see them all gathered to children, because they were gether as one great family of God in not. Thus saith the LORD;

Jesus Christ the righteous *. Refrain thy voice from weeping, and thine eyes from tears : for thy work shall be rewarded, saith the LORD; and they shall come again from the land of the enemy. And there is hope in thine end, saith the Lord, that thy children shall come again to their own border. I have surely heard Ephraim bemoaning himself thus ; Thou hast chastised me, and I was chastised, as a bullock unaccustomed to the yoke : turn thou me, and I shall be turned ; for thou art the LORD my

God. Surely after that I was turned, I repented ; and after that I was instructed, I smote upon my thigh: I was ashamed, yea, even confounded, because I did bear the reproach of my youth. Is Ephraim my dear son ? is he a pleasant child ? for since I spake against him, I do earnestly remember him still: there

my bowels are troubled for him ; I will surely have mercy upon him, saith the Lord. Set thee up waymarks, make thee high heaps : set thine heart toward the highway, even the way which thou wentest: turn again, O virgin of Israel, turn again to these thy cities. How long wilt thou go about, O thou

* Ephraim was descended from Joseph, and the tribe of Benjamin continued with Judah. Rachel was buried between Ramah and Bethlehem, on the confines of either tribe.

fore

backsliding daughter? for the Lord hath created a new thing in the earth, A woman shall compass a man. Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; As yet they shall use this speech in the land of Judah and in the cities thereof, when I shall bring again their captivity ; The LORD bless thee, O habitation of justice, and mountain of holiness. And there shall dwell in Judah itself, and in all the cities thereof together, husbandmen, and they that go forth with flocks. For I have satiated the weary soul, and I have replenished every sorrowful soul. Upon this I awaked, and beheld ; and my sleep was sweet unto me. Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah with the seed of man, and with the seed of beast. And it shall come to pass, that like as I have watched over them, to pluck up, and to break down, and to throw down, and to destroy, and to afflict; so will I watch over them, to build, and to plant, saith the LORD. 29 The sins of the fathers were * In those days they shall visited upon the children. But now, say no more, The fathers have under a better covenant, every man eaten a sour grape, and the shall bear his own iniquity. children's teeth are set on edge. But every one shall die for his own iniquity : every man that eateth the sour grape, his teeth shall be set on edge. Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah : not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD: but this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts ; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more. Thus saith the LORD, which giveth the sun for a light by day, and the ordinances of the moon and of the stars for a light by night, which divideth the sea when the waves thereof roar; The Lord of hosts is his name : If those ordinances depart from before me, saith the LORD, then the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before me for ever, Thus saith the LORD; If heaven above can be measured, and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I will also cast off all the seed of Israel for all that they have done, saith the Lord. Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that the city shall be built to the Lord from the tower of Hananeel unto the gate of the corner. And the measuring line shall yet go forth over against it upon the hill Gareb, and shall compass about to Goath. And the whole valley of the dead bodies, and of the ashes, and all the fields unto the brook of Kidron, unto the corner of the horse gate toward the east, shall be holy unto the LORD; it shall not be plucked up, nor thrown down any more for ever.

This, like the thirtieth chapter, predicts the restoration not only of Judah, but of Israel also ; those ten tribes carried away by Shalmanezer, king of Assyria.

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Good Friday.

MORNING. GENESIS xxi, to ver. 20. * And it came to pass after God did tempt Abraham ; not by these things that God did enticing him, but by making trial of

his faith, and proof of his obedience. tempt Abraham, and said un

2 Isaac was Abraham's only son by to him, Abraham : and he

Sarah-a type of Jesus, the only. said, Behold, here I am. begotten Sonof God, whom the Father 2 And he said, Take now thy designated as his “ beloved Son." son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah ; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.

And Abraham rose up early 3 What a ready obedience ! 0 may in the morning, and saddled I never delay any work of duty ! his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him. Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off. And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide

ye

here with the ass ; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again

6 How affecting a scene! So the to you. And Abraham took Son of God bore the cross, on which the wood of the burnt offer- he was to suffer as our sacrifice. ing, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife ; and they went both of them together. And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father : and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood : but where is the lamb for a burnt

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am I.

offering? And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering : so they went both of them together. And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood.

And A

10 Was ever faith so strong * ? braham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. And the angel of the LORD called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham : and he said, Here 12 Obedience is the rational as well

12 And he said, Lay as the required test of our love and not thine hand upon the lad, fear of God. God knoweth our inneither do thou any thing he chooses that the outward act

tegrity without our obedience ; but unto him: for now I know should evidence before men that we that thou fearest God, seeing are his servants. Of all the patrithou hast not withheld thy arch's former trials, numerous as son, thine only son from me.

they were, this was the heaviest. And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns : and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son. And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovah-jireh : as it is said to this day, In the mount of the Lord it shall be seen. And the angel of the Lord called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time, and said, By myself have I sworn, saith the Lord, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son,

17 that in

17 By “possessing the gate of our blessing I will bless thee, and enemies," is meant, that we have the in multiplying I will multi- command over them. ply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of

18 and in thy 18 See Gal. iii. 16, where this passeed shall all the nations of sage is applied to the Messiah ! the earth be blessed; because

Thy seed, which is Christ.” Thus thou hast obeyed my voice.

was the faith of Abraham counted to So Abraham returned unto

him for righteousness. his young men, and they rose up and went together to Beersheba; and Abraham dwelt at Beer-sheba. O may I strive to imitate the patriarch ; obediently sacrificing whatever the word or providence of my God requires me to resign ! * Abraham was persuaded that

his hopes—that “in Isaac should his seed be called" —were thus cut off, God could and would find some mode of reconciling the severity of the present command with the blessing of the former promise, in that the dead might rise again. (Heb. xi. 19.)

thine only son :

his enemies ;

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EVENING. Isalah liü. 1 Who hath believed our re

1 The Jews believe not the glad port ? and to whom is the tidings of Christ crucified.

2 Jesus came “lowly and of no rearm of the Lord revealed ? putation.” The family of his mother ? For he shall grow up be- Mary, though of the lineage of David, fore him as a tender plant, had become so obscure, that it was and as a root out of a dry

as a root in a dry ground.” ground: he hath no form or comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. * He is despised and rejected

3 He was also poor and despised. of men; a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him ; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. * Surely he hath borne our

4 But when He chose thus to lay griefs, and carried our sor- aside his glory, and take upon Him rows : yet we did esteem him the form of a servant, it was for us! stricken, smitten of God, and Blessed, for ever blessed be his afflicted. But he was woun

name! welcome his humiliation ! ded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities : the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All

6 Am I of the number of those who we like sheep have gone “have erred and strayed from God's astray; we have turned every ways ?”–0 let me return nou! He one to his own way; and the

is ready to receive me. Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation ? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my 9 The whole of this prophecy is so people was he stricken. 'And clear and full, that it is more like a he made his grave with the history of the past than a declaration

of the future *. wicked, and with the rich in

Let me rejoice

more and more in my Bible, the his death ; because he had

word of God. Every word is truth. done no violence, neither was These its prophecies were fully accom. any deceit in his mouth. plished : who shall doubt the fulfil10 Yet it pleased the LORD to

ment of its promises ?

10 From his death springs life : He bruise him ; he hath put him “shall see his seed," a long race of

Righteous men do not usually make their grave with the wicked, or malefactors find their sepulchres among the rich : yet the righteous Jesus died the shameful death of guilt

; and the crucified was buried by the rich Joseph in his own new tomb with reverence and honour.

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