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The True Messiah; or, The Old and New Testaments, Examined According to the Principles of the Language of Nature

Boston: E.P. Peabody, 1842


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INTRODUCTION.

serves an analogous signification; at the renewal of the Church two women shall be turning the mill-stone in a mill ; the one shall be taken, the other left. Because of their different manner of announcing the word of God, such a particular church will be approved, such another disapproved, at the time of the arrival of the Son of Man. A mill-stone, hung to the neck of a scandalous man, and thrown with him into the sea, will be a blessing to him; for that mill-stone represents the means of appropriating to himself the word of God, and the sea is merely a collection of natural truths, by which man may be prepared for the reception of divine truths, as we shall soon see; water being everywhere in the discourses of Jesus Christ, the emblem of truth.

As to eat, is to appropriate to ourselves the love of God, or moral goodness, so to drink, is to appropriate to ourselves his truth. Truth dilutes goodness, which, otherwise, could not incorporate with our soul, as goodness without truth is not appreciable to creatures; or, in other words,. as goodness manifested thereby becomes truth. If you had asked water of me, said Jesus Christ to the Samaritan woman, I would have given. you water which springs up into everlasting life. He who will drink .the water that I shall give him, shall never thirst again. He who: receives my doctrine, rivers of water shall spring up from his heart:; These words need no commentary; nor do these, which Jesus Christ pronounced aloud while teaching in the temple:.. Let him who thirsts, come and drink. Follow me, I will make you fishers of men, said he to the apostles when he associated them in the preaching of the Gospel for, from natural truths, they were to raise men to spiritual knowledges. Thence the custom of baptism, which is evidently only the emblem of the acquisition of the true doctrine, leading man to repentance and reformation ; for, we repeat it, water, as making the mirror and reflecting the images of objects, is the hieroglyphic of truth, even more than of purification. Wine and blood, in the mouth of Jesus Christ, considered as drinks, have analogous signification. Only, these emblems will be of a higher degree; blood being nearer life, and moistening the very flesh of men and animals, while water generally moistens only the objects on which they feed ; and wine, on the other hand, having more" affinity with the spirit of man whose heart it rejoices, according to the emblematic expression of David; the only reason why they play so great a part in the Holy Scriptures, in which mention is constantly made of the blood of victims and of the vine of the Lord ; of the ancient law, and of the blood of the Lamb, of the wine that makes the virgins of the new law to germinate. The first miracle of Jesus Christ was changing of water into wine, because the principal object of his Ad-vent was to change natural truths into divine truths, and to substitute his doctrine for that of human wisdom. New wine is put into new bottles, he says, speaking of that doctrine. Take and drink, cried he, at the Last Supper, after having long prepared the apostles for such a language, take' and drink; this wine is the blood of the new covenant; this is my blood which is shed for the remission of sins; this is the New Testament in my blood. And the apostles so well understood the signification of all these discourses of their Master, that they afterwards generally gave the name of New Testament to the volume which contains his doctrine. The blood of Jesus Christ, then, wherever it is spoken of in the Gospel, recalls and represents the collection of the truths of salvation announced by him to the world: truths which the



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