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observed) was no other than the Divine Person, the Eternal Word, who afterwards appeared in our world as the Lord Jesus Christ, is an opinion held by many pious and learned men, and seems to be sustained by reasons of no small weight. But time will not permit us to enter into the discussion of the subject.

God then directed Moses,-after going down, and making known to the Israelites the laws and ordinances which had just been communicated to him,—to return again to the mount, with Aaron, and his two sons, Nadab and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel; all of whom were to worship afar off, while Moses alone would be permitted to come near the Lord.

One peculiar feature of these transactions deserves here to be noticed. The Israelites, as we have seen, dreaded to have any direct intercourse with the Almighty. The display of his greatness and glory, and especially the awful sublimity of his soul-piercing voice, led them to say to Moses,

Speak thou with us, and we will hear; but let not God speak with us, lest we die.”

Moses is the medium of intercourse between Goä and his people ; and we shall see him often in this capacity, as we go along in the history. Nay, he intercedes for the Israelites. Ņe is their mediator at the throne of grace: a striking type of that greater Advocate and Intercessor, through whom alone we

a

can hope for a favorable access to God, the pardon of sin, and acceptance with him !

The Israelites once more behold their leader descend from the mountain. He communicates to them the Divine message,

"all the words of the Lord, and all the judgments.” They answer with one voice, " All the words which the Lord hath said will we do."

In your own strength ye promise it, fickle and rebellious people! How grievously ye will violate this promise, while Sinai is yet in sight !

Moses, we are told, then wrote all the words of the Lord,,probably the ten commandments, as well as the other laws and ordinances,-in some durable record, which was termed the book of the covenant. This book was to preserve the remembrance of such solemn transactions; and to be a perpetual memorial and proof of the engagement made between God and his people. The latter gave

their cordial assent to this engagement; and Jehovah stipulated, if they continued faithful, to be their God, their Sovereign, and Protector, and to fulfil to them all the promises which he had made to their fathers.

This covenant must be ratified with certain symbolical rites, and the shedding of blood ;-the shedding of blood !—a perpetual ceremony under the Old Testament dispensation, to show that God cannot receive sinful man to his favor, and form a

covenant of friendship with him, without atonement

for sin.

ful man,

Deuth, deserved by the sinner, falls on the substituted victim in sacrifice. The forfeited life is spared; for the life of another is poured out. The dignity of Divine justice is maintained. The Sovereign of the universe can admit him who had been a rebel, but now forgiven and restored to favor;-poor, sin

into an alliance with himself, never to be annulled, and full of blessings unspeakable !

What were these victims, and this shedding of blood, but symbols, to point the faith of the worshipper to the One Victim, who, once for all, has poured out his own blood as a complete propitiatory sacrifice for sin; and through which all who put their trust in him, can be entitled to the covenant-blessings of the Gospel-dispensation.

The covenant of Sinai must be ratified with blood. Early the ensuing morning, Moses rose and built. an altar, and also twelve pillars ;-probably over against it. The former, emblematical of the throne of God, was his representative; while the latter denoted the twelve tribes of Israel. These were the two parties to the covenant.

Burnt-offerings and peace-offerings were saeri. ficed by young men of the children of Israel," whom Moses appointed for the purpose; or rather, as some think it should be rendered, by some who were the first-born. The blood of oxen, of calves, and of goats was poured out, and the altar smoked with the victims. Half of the blood Moses put into basins, and half he sprinkled upon the altar; on which probably the book of the covenunt was laid, as Paul tells us thai that also was sprinkled with the blood.

Moses then took the book of the covenant, and read it in the hearing of the people. It contained the promise of Jehovah to protect and bless them, if they continued faithful. Moses, acting in his name, made this promise. The congregation of Israel made theirs ; "All that the Lord hath said will we do, and be obedient.” Then "Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant, which the Lord hath made with you concerning all these words.” He probabiy sprinkled this blood on the twelve pillars, or on certain of the heads and rulers of the people, as representatives of the whole assembly. He had already done it on the altar, the representative of God. It was a symbolical act, customary, it is supposed, at that time, in the formation of covenants between man and man. It had an awful import. It denoted, that the party who should break the engagement should have his blood poured out, as that of the victims had been.

The covenant between God and his people was now fully ratified. To what tremendous expres- . sions of his displeasure will they not justly be exposed, if they violate it!

When our Saviour ate the passover, for the last time, with his disciples, and invited them to drink of the

cup; he said of the wine which was in it, This is my blood of the New Testament, (or new Covenant,) which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

This new covenant which God offers, my young friend, to form with you, securing to you the full pardon of all your sins, and the divine protection and blessing, both in this life and for ever, must be ratified by the blood of Christ. The victim is already slain. On God's part every thing is ready. How is it on yours?

Repentance for sin, and faith in Jesus Christ, as the great propitiatory sacrifice, makes you a party to this covenant; and God binds himself to fulfil it. Have

you

done this ? Beware,·lest you tread under foot the Son of God, and count the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and do despite unto the Spirit of grace ?

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