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those regions, where they have been captived, and bring them again into Judea; and they shall grow to such numbers there, that the place shall not be able to hold them.
X. 11. And he shall pass through the sea with affliction, and shall smite the waves in the sea, and all the deeps of the river shall dry up: and the pride of Assyria shall be brought down, and the sceptre of Egypt shall depart away.
No seas or rivers shall hinder the propagation of the Gospel; as, in type thereof, when the Jews shall return towards their country, God will rather work miracles for them, than that they shall be hindered in the way: he will again cause the sea to give them passage, and will dry up Jordan before them; and subdue all those their proud enemies of Assyria and Egypt, which had prevailed against them.
XI. 1. Open thy door, O Lebanon, that the fire may devour thy cedars.
A grievous destruction will light upon thee, O thou ungrateful land of Judea, for those repulses and indignities, which thou shalt offer to the Lord of Life: open thou therefore thy doors, O thou Temple of Jerusalem, that the fire may devour thy cedars.
XI. 2. Howl, fir tree; for the cedar is fallen; because all the mighty are spoiled: howl, O ye oaks of Bashan; for the forest of the vintage is come down.
Howl and lament, O ye nobles; for your princes are fallen; all the men of power in Judea are spoiled: make lamentation, O ye of the meaner rank of Israel, for your great mem are cut off.
XI. 3. There is a voice of the howling of the shepherds; for their glory is spoiled: a voice of the roaring of young lions; for the pride of Jordan is spoiled.
There is great wailing and mourning of the rulers and priests, who should have fed and guided my people; for their glory is at an end: all the stout gallants of Judea do now roar and lament; for the magnificence of Jerusalem, and the strength of Jewry, is utterly wasted and come to nothing.
XI. 4, 5. Thus saith the LORD my God; Feed the flock of the slaughter; Whose possessors slay them, and hold themselves. not guilty; and they that sell them say, Blessed be the LORD; for I am rich: and their own shepherds pity them not.
Thus saith the Lord my God; Yet amongst these Jews, which I have justly set out for this slaughter, there is a flock of mine, whom I have due care of; let them be carefully fed, and looked unto: They are in a perilous and woeful case; for their own governors and spiritual guides slay them, and think they do therein good service; and their victors, Titus and his Romans, sell them as merchandize, and rejoice in the wealth
which they have raised from their price: and their own governors do not so much as pity them.
XI. 6. For I will no more pity the inhabitants of the land, saith the LORD: but, lo, I will deliver the men every one into his neighbour's hand, and into the hand of his king: and they shall smite the land.
For the rest, I will have no more compassion on the inhabitants of the land, who have called for the blood of that Just One, to be required of them and their children: for I will deliver them into the hand of each other, to be slain in civil discord; and into the hand of the Roman, whom they professed to be their king; and by both these means they shall be consumed.
XI. 7. And I will feed the flock of slaughter, even you, O poor of the flock. And I took unto me two staves; the one I called Beauty, and the other I called Bonds; and I fed the flock.
As for that part of my flock, which are appointed as sheep to the slaughter, for my Name's sake, I will carefully feed them; even you, O my poor little flock: and, for this cause, I took unto me two pastoral staves; the one, which I called Beauty, was the staff of mercy, and gracious and pleasurable protection; the other, which I called Bonds, was the staff of unity for the conjoining of my Church, or of correction and just censure of the offenders; and with these, I guided my little flock accordingly.
XI. 8. Three shepherds also I cut off in one month; and my soul loathed them, and their soul also abhorred me.
Your three sorts of leaders, Kings, Priests, and Prophets, I cut off together, in a very short space: they were well worthy of my just extirpation: I loathed them for their corruption and wickedness, and they no less abhorred my laws and justice.
XI. 9. Then said I, I will not feed you: that that dieth, let it die; and that that is to be cut off, let it be cut off, &c.
Then said I, of this refractory and perverse people of the Jews; I will take charge of you no more: whatsoever calamity befal you, I will not put my hand to redress it.
XI. 10. And I took my staff, even Beauty, and cut it asunder, that I might break my covenant which I had made with all the people.
And I took my staff, even the staff of my safeguard and protection, which I called Beauty, and cut it in sunder; that I might thereby signify, that, as this people had broke the covenant which they made with me by their wilful disobedience, so that I would free myself from regarding my promise of favour and preservation made to them.
XI. 11. And so the poor of the flock that waited upon me knew that it was the word of the LORD.
Those humble and meek servants of mine, that wait conscionably upon me, in that sinful and perverse generation, well knew, that this was the just will and pleasure of God, to deal thus severely with so rebellious a people.
XI. 12. And I said unto them, If ye think good, give me my price; and if not, forbear. So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver.
Thus I fed my charge; and, at the last, I said unto them, If I be approved of you as your shepherd, give ye me a return of those respects that are due to me, and that price and reward which my oversight and labour calls for at your hands; but, if otherwise ye accept not of me and my function, forbear. This I required of them; but they, instead of returning their holy obedience and due thankfulness unto me, weighed out thirty pieces of silver, which they gave unto a traitor, as the price of my life, which should by his perfidiousness be betrayed into their hands.
XI. 13. And the LORD said unto me, Cast it unto the potter: a goodly price that I was prised at of them. And I took the thirty pieces of silver, and cast them to the potter in the house of the LORD.
And the Lord said unto me, Make known by this thy prophecy unto the people, that this thirty pieces shall be cast unto the potter: say to them, It is a goodly price, whereat ye have valued me. And, accordingly, in vision, I took those thirty pieces of silver; and shewed them, that this sum, which should be offered to be delivered back to the high priests in the house of the Lord, should by them be put into the hands of a potter, for the purchase of a field for burial.
XI. 14. Then I cut asunder mine other staff, even Bonds, that I might break the brotherhood between Judah and Israel.
Then I cut asunder mine other staff of unity, which I called Bonds; that I might thereby signify, that I had let loose all brotherly and peaceable respects, betwixt the true professors of the Gospel which are the spiritual Judah, and the revolted and erroneous sons of the spiritual Israel.
XI. 15. And the LORD said unto me, Take unto thee yet the instruments of a foolish shepherd.
Do thou, for a sign unto them, take unto thee such a staff, and such a scrip, as no wise shepherd would bear, as being misfashioned and useless; and let thy gesture and carriage be thereafter.
XI. 16. For, lo, I will raise up a shepherd in the land, which shall not visit those that be cut off, neither shall seek the young one, nor heal that that is broken, nor feed that that standeth still: but he shall eat the flesh of the fat, and tear their claws in pieces.
And this shall foresignify unto them, that I will give way to a shepherd, not more foolish than wicked, to arise in my Church; even the Antichrist of the latter times; who shall cast off all care of my flock, either of seeking the strayed, or fetching in the weak and tender ones, or healing the broken, or carrying the lame and impotent: but, contrarily, he shall persecute my Church, and make a prey thereof; feeding himself fat, with the rich means, which he shall take from the great and mighty; and cruelly tyrannizing over the weak, with extreme violence, smiting and wounding them, that they may be disabled to stand up against him.
XI. 17. Woe to the idle shepherd that leaveth the flock! the sword shall be upon his arm, and upon his right eye: his arm shall be quite dried up, and his right eye shall be utterly darkened.
But, woe be to that false pastor, which only carries the name and semblance of an evangelical shepherd, who leaveth the flock to be wasted and spoiled! the just revenge of God shall be, both upon the power and policy of that man of sin: his power shall be abated and utterly weakened, by the breath of the mouth of God; and his craft and policy shall, at the last, end in disappointment and confusion.
XII. 1. The burden of the word of the LORD for Israel, saith &c.
The heavy message, which God sends to the world, in the favour and behalf of his Church: Thus saith, &c.
XII. 2. Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah and against Jerusalem.
Behold, I will make my Church to be unto all the enemies thereof, as an intoxicating cup; which they shall no sooner offer to touch, by a wilful siege or opposition, but they shall be either giddy or senseless.
XII. 3. And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it.
And in that day will I make my Church as some weighty and unwieldy stone; which when the enemies thereof shall lift at and strive to raise it up, it shall fall upon them, and crush them in pieces: yea, though all the people of the earth should join their forces together to remove it, yet they should miscarry under the burden.
XII. 4. In that day, saith the LORD, I will smite every horse with astonishment, and his rider with madness: and I will open mine eyes upon the house of Judah, &c.
The malicious world may combine together against my Church, but it shall not prevail: I will defeat all their hostile attempts: their horses of war will I smite with astonishment, and their riders with stupidity and senselessness; and I will look down graciously upon my Church, for their deliverance and preservation.
XII. 5. And the governors of Judah shall say in their heart, The inhabitants of Jerusalem shall be my strength in the LORD of hosts their God.
And the governors of my people shall say, in their heart, There is allsufficient strength and safeguard to me, and to all the true members of the Church of Christ, in the Lord of Hosts, our God; so as we need not fear what man can do
XII. 6. In that day will I make the governors of Judah like a hearth of fire among the wood, and like a torch of fire in a sheaf; and they shall devour all the people round about, on the right hand and on the left: and Jerusalem shall be inhabited again in her own place, even in Jerusalem.
Yea, I will not only give a defensive power to my people, but will make them prevalent and victorious over their enemies; so as I will cause the governors of my Church to be as coals on the hearth, while their enemies are as a faggot laid thereupon; or, to be as a torch of fire in their enemies' sheaf, which shall soon consume them to ashes; and my Church shall continue itself in despite of all opposition, and the gates of hell shall never be able to prevail against it.
XII. 7. The LORD also shall save the tents of Judah first, that the glory of the house of David and the glory of the inhabitants of Jerusalem do not magnify themselves against Judah.
The Lord shall save first those that are of the villages of Judah; that is, the weakest of his people, and those of the outskirts of his Church; that the glory of the more noble and courageous champions of Christ may not magnify itself, over the feeble and obscure, but that all may ascribe their salvation to the Lord.
XII. 8. And he that is feeble among them at that day shall be as David; and the house of David shall be as God, as the angel of the LORD before them.
He, that is weak in himself, shall be as strong as David, who overcame the bear and the lion and the Philistine, in the power of his God; and those, that are eminent in this holy profession of Christianity, shall be as the angels of God, invincible, and able to do all things, through him that strengthens them.
XII. 10. And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have