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miraculous deliverance from the power of an insulting foe, by the slaughter of the Assyrian army, were to celebrate this great event with the instruments of music which were then in use.—And in battles of Shaking will be fight with it. Those places in Judea, which had been spoiled and desolated, were greatly to rejoice, when the remains of the vast Aflyrian army passed atong ; because God himself had, from heaven, fought against their enemies, and by his strong hand, and stretched-out arm, had fhaken and torn them to pieces. The thunder, lightning, and hail, with other plagues, struck them with terror, made them tremble and shake, whilst they were entirely defeated, and all their hostile designs discon. certed. Sennacherib, having conspired against the Jewish people, and taken the defenced cities of Judah, laid siege to Jerusalem, fully determined to spoil and destroy that city: but almighty God was pleased 10 frustrate his purpose, to fight against his army in battles of shaking, to humble that haughty monarch, and to cut down the thickets of his forest. The judgments of God are a great deep, which we cannot explore. We are unable to explain their nature, to investigate the causes of their suddenness and severity, of their frequency, extent, and continuance. These subjects, which far transcend the most penetrating understanding, we ought to contemplate with awe, veneration, and profound submission, deeply senfible, that, in this manner, it is our indispensable duty to give glory to the Lord our God.

33 For Tophet is ordained of old; yea, for the king it is prepared : he hath made it deep and large: the pile thereof is fire and much wood; the breath of the LORD, like a stream of brimstone, doth kindle it.,

This verse, which concludes the subject of which our prophet hath been treating, contains an important

argument

argument whereby the foregoing predictions are established, and a forcible description of their entire com. pletion. Considering the words in relation to the Assyrians, to whom they primarily referred, they must be literally explained : viewing them as having respect 'to the inveterate enemies and persecutors of the church of God in every age, to them they may be figuratively applied. Let us shortly consider them in both senses. The Hebrew word Tophet figni. fies, such a martial instrument as we call a Drum. It was the name of a valley, situated near to the city Jerusalem, on the south-east; which was also called, the Valley of Hinnom. In this place, the Canaanites, and afterward the Israelites, notwithstanding they were strictly prohibited, facrificed their children, burning them in the fire, in honour of the idol named Moloch. It was a hollow image, made of brass, placed in this valley, into' which its votaries having put fire, they threw in the children alive, that were offered to this idol. To prevent their lamentable shrieks and cries from being heard, persons were appointed to beat upon drums, or instruments somewhat similar to them. Hence it had the name of Tophet. Several things are related concerning this infamous place in the Old Testament, which shew, that it exhibited a striking emblem of the place of torment, the lake of fire and brimstone, wherein the wicked are punished. Situated without the walls of Jerusalem, it was destined to be the theatre on which the most excruciating anguish was suffered : the most bitter screams of the tortured children were every where heard. In these, and in other respects, it afforded an affecting representation of the infernal regions, which are separated from the New Jerusalem 'by an impaffable gulf; where the worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched; where the voice of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever, who worship the beast and his image. It is therefore used for a place of punishment by fire.

Tophet Tophet is ordained of old. It was appointed and appropriated by the most High, to whom all his works are known from the beginning, to be the place wherein the most awful divine judgments were to be executed upon the avowed implacable enemies of the church. This ordination is affirmed to have been of old, in the counsels of God, which are from everlast. ing: or, as the word, in the original language, fignifies, from yesterday. The expression, when applied to any divine constitution, most be understood in a figurative sense, denoting that period, long ago elapfed, when God settled the mountains, and formed the valleys, which, to him, is as yesterday.rea, for the king it is prepared. The literal Tophet was so ordered and disposed, by infinite wisdom and power, as to form a proper convenient place for the destruction of the vast army of the great king of Assyria. The allegorical Tophet is also prepared, by the same omnipotent righteous Lord, for the king, the prince of this world, the chief and leader of the powers of darkness, with all his subje&s, who are led captive by him at his pleasure. Our blessed Saviour therefore, describing the process of the final judgment, declares, that he will fay to them on his left hand, Depart • from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared • for the devil and his angels * He hath made it deep and large. So extensive were the dimensions of the valley of Tophet, that it was admirably suited to the accomplishment of the awful purpose to which, at the time referred to, it fhould prove subservient. The Tophet prefigured by it, is made fufficiently capacious, not only to contain the king and head of the apostasy from God, but all the nations of them that forget the Lord, and yield chosen subjection to the prince of the “ thing for that which corresponds to it; even the “ wicked for the day of evil:” and what is more fuited to a wicked man, than an evil day. Doth not affronted majesty, and impartial justice, require, that those who perversely endeavour to counteract the design of infinite wisdom in their formation, should feel the effects of almighty power in their punishment? Would you then happily avoid the dreadful doom of the enemies of God? flee from the wrath to come, forsake your evil ways, and betake yourselves to the hope fet before you. In the plenitude of purest compaslion, and with bowels of the tenderest love, the great God, whom you have offended, entreats you to escape from the terrible miseries that are coming on the workers of iniquity. As I live, faith the Lord

The pile thereof is fire and much wood. Vast quantities of timber must have been collected into the valley

power of the air.

* Matth. XXV, 41.

of

of Tophet, for the horrid purpose of consuming the immeníe number of human facrifices which were there offered to Moloch. The fire and much wood, burnt in that place, might represent, the dreadful ingredients which constitute the complicated misery of those who shall be tormented in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb. It may be inquired, How could the large piles of combustible materials be kindled? The answer is given in the next words: The breath of the Lord, like a stream of brimstone, doth kindle it. Notwithstanding numbers of people were doubtlefs employed in setting on fire the large piles of wood which burnt in the valley of Tophet, yet the word of God, accompanied with his almighty power, gave secret efficacy, and certain fuccess to their operations, that they might accomplish his righteous judgments. With respect to the other Tophet, of which it was the figure, the wrath of Jehovah, here compared to liquid brimstone, effectually kindles the unquenchable fire, whereby the wicked shall be tormented; who, in the words of Jesus Christ, shall be cast into a furnace of fire; there

shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth *.'

This momentous and interesting truth ought not to be superficially discussed, or Nightly passed over, lest, by treating it in this manner, it fail to operate those extensive salutary effects, on our temper and conduct, which it is intended to produce. I will not, however, enlarge at present, lest your attention, which hath been arrested by this awful subject, may relax, and so the impression it is suited to convey, become faint and confused. I therefore conclude this Lecture more abruptly than I could have wished. The • Lord hath made all things for himself, yea, even

the wicked for the day of evil t.' An excellent Hebrew scholar remarks, that the original words might be properly translated, “ The Lord hath made every

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God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wic• ked-turn ye, turn ye, from your evil ways; for ! why will ye die, O house of Israel * ? - The Lord

L'ess thee, and keep thee: the Lord make his face

shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: the • Lord .lift up his countenance upon thee, and give

• thee peace ti

+ Numb. vi. 24, 25, 26.

* Ezek. xxxiii, 11.

END OF VOL. II.

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