« VorigeDoorgaan »
in particular. * For his family he offered a young bullock, on which he laid his hands, and confessed his own sins, and those of his house. He afterwards cast lots upon two goats, which were offered for the people.; one whereof was to be sacrificed, and the other sent into the desert. See Lev. xvi. 8. This done, he slew the calf and the ram that were appointed for the expiation of his own sins, and those of his brethren the priests.
When all these preparations were over, he went into the holy of holies, in the dress of a common priest, because this was a day of affliction, and burned before the mercy-seat the perfume which he had brought from the altar. This perfume raised a kind of a cloud, that hindered people from looking into the ark, which was reckoned an heinous offence..... Sam. vi. 19. He then came out to receive from one of the priests the blood of the young bullock, and carried it into the holy of holies, where, standing between the staves of the ark, he sprinkled some of it with his finger on the mercy-seat; and by thisceremony made himself fit to atone for the sins of the people: afterwards he came out of the holy of holies, to take the blood of the goat which he had slain. This he sprinkled upon the mercy-seat, as he had done that of the bullock before. He then once more came out of the holy of holies, and took some of the blood of the goat and bullock, which he poured into the horns of the inner altar (made hollow for that purpose) near the veil which divided the holy place from the most holy; and also on the basis of the outer altar. Each of these sprinklings was repeated seven times. Lastly, the high-priest laid both his hands upon the head of the other goat, and had him conveyed into the wilderness, by a fit person, after he had confessed over him the sins of the people, and laid them upon his head.
This was a very expensive ceremony. The sins of the people were done away by the sacrifice of the first goat; and, to shew that they would be no more had in remembrance, the second was loaden with them, t and carried them with him into the wilderness, which was thought by the ancient Hebrews to be the abode of devils, the authors of all vice and iniquity; (see Matt. xii. 43. Rev. xviii. 2.) and therefore the people were wont to insult over and curse him, to spit upon him, to pluck off his hair ; and, in short, to use him as an accursed thing. There appear no footsteps of this usage in the law ; but it is certain that it was very ancient, since St. Barnabas, who was contemporary with the apostles, makes express mention of it in his Ep. p. m. 22. which epistle must have been written not long after the destruction of Jerusalem. The ill treatment which Jesus Christ met with from the Jews, had great conformity with this custom; and it is evident, that his enemies dealt with him in the same manner, as they were used to do with the goat azazel, as Tertullian observes, adv. Jul. lib. III. cap. 3. It is very probable, that the ancient Jews took occasion from some passages out of the prophets (as Isai. i. 6,.1. 6, liii. 3,) to bring in the custom of this insulting the goat azazel, and crowning him with a red ribbon ; or, as Lamy observes,
They offered on that day fifteen sacrifices, viz. Twelve whole burnt-offer. ings, and other expiatory sacrifices both for the people and priests.
† This goat was called Azazel, which the Lxx have rendered by a word which signifies to remove or turn away evil.
a piece of red stuff, which was in the shape of a tongue. It was also the custom among the heathens to load with curses and imprecations those human sacrifices that were offered for the public welfare, and to crown them with red ribbons. See Virgil, Æn. lib. II. ver. 133,
If it be asked, for what reason God was pleased to choose the vilest and most despicable of those animals that were clean, to be offered on the day of expiation, we shall answer with some learned authors, that the Ægyptians entertaining a very great veneration for goats, and the Israelites themselves having worshipped them in Ægypt (Lev. xvii. 7,) God's design was to turn them from this kind of idolatry, by appointing the one to be offered for a sacrifice, and the other to be loaden with the iniquities of the people. See Bochart de animal. sac. ser. lib. I. cap. 53.
When the high-priest had performed all these functions, he went into the court of women, and read some part of the law. Lastly, he came the fourth time into the holy of holies to fetch back the censer, and the pan wherein was the fire. When therefore it is said in scripture*, that the high-priest entered only once a year into the holy of holies, it must be understood of one day in the year, and not once on that day. Every thing was done in order, and when one function was over, he was obliged to come out and perform other ceremonies; which, according to the law, could not be done in the most holy place; as washing himself, changing his cloaths, slaying the sacrifices, &c.
We have dwelt the longer upon this solemnity, because it hath a greater conformity with the Christian religion than any other; since, through all its parts, it was typical of the most important mysteries of Christianity. The whole was a most lively representation of the atonement made for the sins of mankind by the blood of Jesus Christ! It is observable, that Philo-Judæus had some notion of this truth : for in his treatise de Somn. p. 447, he observes, that the word of God; whereby he means the Son; is the head and glory of the propitiation, i. é. of what renders men acceptable to God. These passages of scripture, that Jesus Christ gave himself a ransom for many".... Matt. xx. 28,“ That he was made the propitiation for our sins".... I. John, iv. 10. “That he was the propitiation not only for our sins, but also for those of the whole world"...1 John, ï. 2. and such like expressions, which occur almost in every page of the gospel, can mean nothing more than that Jesus Christ hath by the sacrifice of himself, performed that which was only prefigured by the sacrifices of the law, and particularly by the generul and solemn expiation we are now speaking of The same Jewish author, had also some idea of this matter. It will be proper to set lown his very words ; not as if we thought they were any confirmation of the Christian revelation ; but only to shew that these were truths, which the wisest part of the nation acknowledged, and had found out by close and serious meditation. He saith then, that “whereas the priests of other nations offered sacrifices for their own countrymen only; the bigh-priest of the Jews offered for all mankind, and for the whole creation." See Phil. de Monar. p. 637. And not only these sacrifices which were
* Exod. xxs. 10. Lev. xvi. 34. Hcb, xis. 7.
offered on the day of expiation, were a more exact representation of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, than any other ; but also the person by whom the atonement was made, was in every respect qualified to represent the high-priest of the Christian Church ; and that,
1. Upon the account of his dignity; which, according to the Jews, was at its utmost height when he entered into the holy of holies : for which reason he was called great among his brethren....Lev.xxi. 10. This dignity was so very considerable, that Philo does not scruple to say, according to his lofty and rhetorical way of speaking, that the high-priest was to be something more than human; that he more nearly resembled God than all the rest ; and that be partook both of the divine and human nature. See de Monar. p. 63. and de Somn.
It seems to have been with a design of expressing both the holiness and dignity of the high-priest, that the law enjoined, that none shall remain in the tabernacle, whilst the high-priest went into the holy of holies. Further, the high-priest of the Jews, upon the day of atonement, put on at the first his best suit of apparel ; but was content with the holy linen garments, which he wore in common with other priests; hereby signifying, that when our blessed Lord should come into the world, to do the will of God, he should not make a splendid figure, nor array himself with all that glory, of which he is truly possessed.
2. The high-priest further represented our Saviour by his holiness ; to denote which a greater quantity of oil was used in the anointing of the high-priest, than in that of his brethren; froin whence he was called the priest anointed, Levit. iv. 3,5. Nothing can better repres, sent the great holiness of Jesus Christ than this great plenty of oil used in the consecration of Aaron: and it was undoubtedly. in allusion to this anointing, that Jesus Christ is styled in scripture the holy one, by way of eminence.... Acts iii. 14. Rev. iii. 7.,
3. The high-priest represented Jesus Christ by his being on this day of atonement, a mediator between God and the people. For though Moses be called a mediator in the New Testament; yet, it is certain, that the high-priest was invested with this office on the day of expiation. Moses must indeed be acknowledged as a mediator ; God having, by this means, made a covenant with the children of Israel. But as they were very apt to transgress the law, it was decessary there should be a mediator, who, by his intercession and sacrifices, might reconcile them to God. Now this was the high-priest's function. So that Moses and Aaron were exact types of the twofold mediation of Jesus Christ. By him was the new covenant made, and by his own blood hath he forever reconciled God to mankind.
4. The entrance of Jesus Christ into heaven, once for all, there to present his own blood to God, as an atonement for our sins, was clearly typified by the high-priest's going once a year into the holy of holies with the blood of the victims. See Heb. ix. 12. 24. · As for the two goats, we learn from the epistle of St. Barnabas, as quoted above, that they were even then looked upon as typical. They both represented the same thing, but under different ideas.
The offering of the one was a manifest tokey of the people's iniquiries being remitted and forgiven ; and the sending of the other into the wilderness, shewed that they were carried away, or blotted out of God's remembrance. To this there seems to be an allusion.... Isaiah Xxxviii. 17, where it is said, that God casts sins behind his back, and into the bottom of the sea. The sacrifice of Jesus Christ may be considered under these two different views : he hath done away our sins, bath taken them upon himself, and nailed them to his cross.... 1 Pet. ii. 24.
LETTER FROM DR. SAMUEL JOHNSON
TO A YOUNG CLERGYMAN.
NOT many days ago Dr. L. shewed me a letter, in which you make kind mention of me: I hope, therefore, that you will not be displeased that I endeavour to preserve your good will by some observations which your letter suggested to me.
You are afraid of falling into some improprieties in the daily service, by reading to an audience that requires no exactness. Your fear, I hope, secures you from danger. They who contract bad habits, are such as have no fear. It is impossible to do the same thing very often, without some peculiarity of manner; but that manner may be good or bad, and a little care will at least preserve it from being bad: to make it very good, there must, I think, be something of natural or acquired casual felicity, which cannot be taught.
• Your present method of making your sermons seems very judicious. Few frequent preachers can be supposed to have sermons more their own, than yours will be. Take care to register somewhere or other, the authors from whom your several discourses are borrowed; and do not imagine that you shall always remember even what perhaps you now think it impossible to forget.
My advice however is, that you attempt from time to time an original sermon, and in the labour of composition do not burden your mind with too much at once; do not exact from yourself at one effort of excogitation, propriety of thought and elegance of expression. Invent first, and then embellish. The production of something where nothing was before, is an act of greater energy than the expansion or decoration of the thing produced. Set down diligently your thoughts as they rise, in the first words that occur, and when you kave matter you will easily give it form; nor perhaps will this method be always necessary, for by habit your thoughts and diction will Row together.
The composition of sermons is not very difficult; the divisions not only help the memory of the hearer, but direct the judgment of the writer ; they supply sources of invention, and keep every part in its proper place.
What I like least in your letter is your account of the manners of the parish; from which I gather, that it has been long neglected by the parson. The Dean of Carlisle, * who was then a little rector in Northamptonshire, told me that it might be discerned whether or no
Dr. Percy, afterwards Bishop of Dromore.
there was a clergyman resident in a parish, by the civil or saragë manners of the people. Such a congregation as yours stands in much need of reformation : and I would not have you think it impossible to reform them. A very savage parish was civilized by a decayed gentlewoman, who came among them to teach a petty school. My learned friend, Dr. Wheeler,* of Oxford, when he was a young man, had the care of a neighbouring parish for fifteen pounds a year, which he was never paid; but he counted it a convenience, that it compelled him to make a sermon weekly. One woman he could not bring to the communion, and when he reproved or exhorted her, she only answered that she was no scholar, He was advised to set some good woman or man of the parish, a little wiser than herself, to talk to her in language level to her mind. Such honest, I may call them holy artifices, must be practised by every clergyman, for all means must be tried by which souls may be saved. Talk to your people, however, as much as you can, and you will find, that the more frequently you converse with them upon religious subjects, the more willingly they will attend, and more submissively they will learn.A clergyman's diligence always makes him venerable. I think I have now only to say, that in the momentous work that you have undertaken, I pray God to bless you.
I am, Sir,
Your most hamble Servant, Bolt-court,
Sam. JOHNSON. Aug. 30, 1780.
[Orth. Ch. Mag.]
ANECDOTE OF HOOKER. THIS judicious divine and incomparable writer, was a relation of that great Protestant champion, Bishop JEWELL, by whom he was sent to Corpus Christi College, Oxford. Honest Izaack Walton relates a curious and pleasing anecdote of Mr. Hooker and his worthy patron, as follows:
“ As soon as Hooker was perfectly recovered from this sickness, he took a journey from Oxford to Exeter, to satisfy and see his good mother, being accompanied by a countryman and companion of his own college, and both on foot; whi was then either more in fashion, or want of money, or their humility made it so; but on foot they went and took Salisbury in their way, purposely to see the good bishop, who made Mr. Hooker and his companion dine with him at his own table; which Mr. Hooker boasted of with much joy and gratitude when he saw his mother and friends: and at the bishop's parting with him, the bishop gave him good counsel, and his benediction, but forgot to give him money ; which when the bishop had considered, he sent a servant in all haste to call Richard back to him, and at Richard's return, the bishop said to him, “ Richard, I sent for you back to lend you a horse which hath carried me many a mile, and I thank God with much ease :" and presen:ly delivered into his hand a walking staff, with which be professed he had travelbed through many parts of Germany; and he said, “ Richard, I do