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ages could not be owing to their idolatry, a crime which they had carefully avoided since their return from the Babylonian captivity.

“ But the majority of the council agreed that the Messiah had not appeared, and that his delay was owing to their sins and impenitence.

“ They next debated in what manner their long expected Deliverer would manifest himself; and readily agreed, that He would appear as a mighty conqueror, and deliver them from all foreign dominion.

“ After the Session had continued six days, a learned rabbi, named Abraham, strenuously urged upon the council the necessity and propriety of strictly examining into the pretensions of the Christian Messiah, Jesus of Nazareth.

“ The pharisees, who over-ruled the assembly, answered, that He could not be that distinguished personage, because He appeared in a humble and despised state ; but the Messiah was to manifest himself in a glorious and triumphant manner.

“ Abraham, who was dissatisfied with pharisaic reasoning, strongly insisted upon Christ's miracles, and asked by what power he could perform them!

Zebedee, one of the chiefs of this sect, answered that he wrought them by the magic art.' Abraham replied, that no magic art could give sight, hearing, and speech to those who were born blind, deaf, or dumb.'

It appears, that in consequence of the remonstrances of this learned rabbi, some Christian priests were admitted, and asked to explain the nature and grounds of their faith. These priests were Roman Catholics, who, not contented to prove that Jesus Christ was the Messiah, began to extol the worship, ceremonies, and authority


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of their church. The council, highly irritated, exclaimed, in a tumultuous manner, .No Christ! No Godman ; No intercession of saints ! No worship of images! No prayers to the Virgin Mary!

“ They also rent their clothes, and cast dust upon their heads, crying, 'Blasphemy! Blasphemy!' in this manner they broke up the assembly and refused to receive any further information respecting Christ."- Adams's History of the Jews.


See 1 Sam, xxii, 1.-2 Sam. xxiii, 13.-1 Chron. xi. 15.

MR. CALMAN, a believing Israelite, a man of high Christian character, and more than common intelligence, who has spent many years in Palestine, gives the foll ng account of this remarkable and secure hiding place of the Royal Psalmist :

“ Having furnished ourselves with the necessary articles, as a quantity of string, wax-candles, and lucifer matches, all indispensably necessary for the exploring of the cave, we set out for it. The greatest part of our way lay through the fertile plains of Rephaim, which extends as far as Bethlehem, and where we remained for a little to secure guides. On leaving Bethlehem we entered a most beautifully cultivated valley, a good part of which, if not nearly the whole, was laid out in vineyards and olive plantations, mostly composed of young trees which seemed to be struggling for life and existence, amidst dry stumps and dead roots, remains of luxuriant olive groves that have

been laid waste by the warfares which keep the country in a perpetual state of desolation. An hour's ride brought us to the ruins of Adullam, one of the oldest cities of the Canaanites, of considerable extent, and bearing many marks of high antiquity.

After dismounting from our horses, we proceeded in the direction of the cave which lies some two hundred yards off, the mouth of which is situated in the middle of a perpendicular cliff of above two thousand feet in height, and then you have to make your way by a slanting edge of rock of about three feet in width, projecting from the middle of the cliff, which makes you giddy to look down into the valley below. This Iedge of rock lands you at two isolated pieces of rock, one above the other, of about twenty feet in height, which you have to climb up; from the top of which you have to bound or leap over a chasm of some feet in width. It would require days, not merely hours, to explore the cave pro.. perly, even as far as we penetrated: not hundreds, but thousands could find ample room to hide themselves in it; and such is the number and such the intricacies of the passages which seem to entwine in each other, that one gets puzzled by the mere sight of them. The only sure way of securing a safe retreat, is to fasten one end of a string at the mouth of the cave and to keep the other end in the hand, and to go no further than the end of the string will allow. To trust oneself beyond it, or to have the string cut, would actually be cutting the string of one's life. The quantity of string we had taken with us would have conducted us some distance further, but exhaustion and fatigue made us retrace

our steps after we had penetrated about five hundred yards. It would require something more than mechanical genius to give an adequate description of the interior of the cave. Fancy figured all kinds of edifices of no mean construction. The reflection of the lighted candles on their snow white walls communicated an incredible splendour to the scene, which made one regret such grandeur should be consigned to perpetual obscurity. But the mind was soon transported from the trivial present to the glorious past; or from the contemplation of the nature of the cave, to the use which a wise providence had designed it to be. For was it not in the wide bosom of this very cave that the Royal Psalmist sought and found security? And was it not here that the sweet Psalmist of Israel celebrated God's mercies and goodness for the protection vouchsafed to him, in the glowing language of the 57th and 142nd Psalm ? Doubtless the same cave afforded protection to thousands and tens of thousands of those of whom the world was not worthy, but who were driven to seek security in deserts and in mountains, in dens and in caves, through the wrath of their bitter persecutors.

“One of our company, lingering a little behind to pick out some fossil remains from the walls, with which the cave abounded, and which would afford abundant speculation to the Geologist, found himself unable to find his way back, and like a fish taken in an evil net, entangled himself more by attempting to disentangle himself. Although he did not remain in this predicament for more than quarter of an hour, yet he was impressed with all the horrors of being buried alive. The echo of Where are you,' that was uttered

by some of his anxious companions, who were hurrying from vault to vault, and traversing from passage to passage, sounded as if it had been coming from a thousand different quarters, or proceeding from a thousand different voices,- from the multitudes of departed spirits with which the Easterns people subterranean vaults and caverns, and were thus welcoming him to their region of perpetual darkness. Great was our joy, when all of a sudden one of the company issued out from one of the passages, with a lighted candle in one hand and a string that would safely conduct him out of his sepulchral habitation in the other. If there ever had been a time when he realized the words of the Psalmist, thou hast set my feet in a large room,' more than another, it was when he found himself fairly out of the strait, narrow and intricate passages into the comparatively wide and open chamber from whence he first started.

“Our company having once more been brought together, we set out for our homeward journey. Nothing particular occurred worth relating, except the meeting of a number of Jews returning from Rachel's grave, where they went to pray. The only answer I could obtain from them relating to its propriety was, the repeating of the words of the prophet Jeremiah, “Rachel weeping for her children ;' which, like many other passages of Scripture, they wrest for their own destruction. Three hours' ride brought us back to Jerusalem, much pleased with the excursion, and greatly amazed with the extent and grandeur of the timely royal asylum, which will continue an object of interest to remotest ages. .

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