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4. Every valley shall be exalted,
and every mountain and hill made low: and the crooked Mall be made straight, and the rough
places plain. These are the words of the pro. phet himself, unfolding the counsels of God concerning the manner in which Messiah's kingdom should be established in the world, and the alterations which muft necessarily take place, in order to that end. “Every “ valley fhall be exalted;" to the poor in fpirit, the lowly and contrite fouls, the Gospel shall be preached, and they shall be exalted in faith and hope—" and every mountain “ and hill made low;" on the contrary, pride of every kind, and in
every shape, exalting itself whether in judaical pharifaism, or in gentile philosophy, against the knowlege of God, shall be made low, and subdued to the obedience of Christ : “ and “ the crooked thall be made straight;" truth and rectitude shall succeed to error and depravity—-" and the “ rough places plain;" every thing that offendeth shall be removed, and all difficulties and inequalities fmoothed, till unanimity and uniformity prevail. Thus shall the way be prepared for the King of Righteousness to yisit his people, to dwell in them, and to walk among them.
5. And the glory of the Lord shall
be recealed, and all flesh shall see it together; for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.
· IMMEDIATELY after the proclamation and preparation made by the Baptist, the Divinity was revealed in human nature, God was manifested in the flesh, seen and conversed with by all ranks and degrees of meu, high and low, rich and poor, Jews and Gentiles, Pharisees and Saducees, publicans and sinners. · The accomplishinent of this part of Isaiah's prophecy is exactly related by St. John the Evangelist, in the following terms; “ The word was made “flesh, and dwelt among us, and we 66 beheld his GLORY, the glory as of “ the only begotten of the Father, “ full of grace and truth *.” Thus we have seen under what cha* John i. 14.
racter the Baptist is held forth to us in the predictions of the prophets concerning him, as one who should go before Messiah in the fpirit and power of Elias, to proclaim and prepare the way for the advent of God incarnate. How perfectly, during the course of his ministry, he filled up this character, will appear in the subfequent fections.
Confiderations on the appearance, doca.
trine, and baptism of St. John.. THE days of St. John's retire
ment were now ended, and he was to exchange the pleasures of contemplation for the far different scenes of an active life; to behold, with grief and indignation, the fins and follies of mankind, the fight of which must needs be more grating and afflicting to his righteous soul, than a garment of camel's hair could be to his body; to encounter the oppofition of a world that would be fure to take arms against him, from