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they rejected our Lord. Then Judah became Lo-ammi* (not my people); bat still continues to be visibly an object of God's love, preserved as a distinct race, for gracious purposes of mercy. Perhaps in the last ages, the converts of the house of Judah will be the principal objects of Antichrist's malice. Their deliverance may be first wrought, and, through them, the blessing may be extended to their brethren of the ten tribes, and ultimately to the whole world. This order of things the subsequent prophecy seems to point out.f
Thus we have cleared our way one step. The kingdom of Israel is, in reference to our present subject, dismissed out of our view. They are
* Horsley on Hosea, Preface pp. xvi.—xxiii., where the typical import of the names of the three children of the prophetess (Hosea's wife) is ably argued. The three children represent certain distinct parts of the Jewish nation, of the whole of which the mother was the emblem. Jezrael (the seed of God) signified the election, consisting progressively of a beloved remnant, and eventually of the whole nation. Compare the 5th and 28th verses of Rom. xi. Lo-ruhamah (unpitied Ovk qXejifievr). 1 Pet. ii. 10.) signified the ten tribes, during the whole interval, till the final restoration. And Lo-ammi (not my people) signified the kingdom of Judah during the times of the Gentiles. Till both Loruhamah and Lo-ammi having run their course, the whole twelve tribes become the Jezreel, and great shall be the day of Jezreel,
f Ibid. i. 6. See note B, in the Appendix.
lost to the eye of man, and were so, be it observed, many centuries before the time of Christ. God withdrew them from the recognized scene of his providence, and they are now nowhere to be found, except in the revealed purpose and plan of Jehovah, who has caused their name to be clearly written as co-heirs in the prophetic entail of the land.
But with Judah it is far otherwise. They have been held forth, by the hand of God, to the observation of men in all ages: the curtain has never for one moment dropped, to hide them from the view of either the church or the world; but they have stood prominent, from generation to generation, as God's witnesses in the earth. Witnessess, indeed, of the desperate iniquity of their fathers, and the infatuated obstinacy of the children; but witnesses, also, whose testimony can never be invalidated, of the righteousness and truth of the Lord their God. It is admitted that the language of our text was strictly applicable to the Jews till the time of Christ; but Israel was carried captive by Shalmanezer, king of Assyria, outcast and lost, seven hundred years before Christy consequently, during that interval, the language of our text was applicable to Judah only. Concerning Judah we now speak, and allege the perpetuity of this application, "Lo! the people shall dwell alone, and shall not be reckoned among the nations."
If it be urged, in opposition to this view, that in the New Testament the Apostles speak of Israel, not Judah: the answer, I think, is, that the ten tribes, as a kingdom, being lost sight of for ages, and individuals of many, perhaps of all of them, having come up with Judah from Babylon, or afterwards mingled among them, the general name of the whole nation^ in its earlier ages, from Jacob to Rehoboam, is used generally, without any special recognition of a distinction between the two kingdoms, which had been long practically obsolete. A proof of this is, that St. Paul calls himself an Israelite, in the same sentence where he specifies the tribe of Benjamin as his paternal tribe. (Rom. xi. 1.) Similar is the answer to the objection, grounded upon the mention of the twelve tribes by the apostles. (Acts xxvi. 7; James i. 1.) That individuals of each tribe are intended, is clear from the fact that St. James, who addressed his Epistle to the twelve tribes, writes as to Christians throughout; not arguing doctrinally, to convince his nation of the messiahship of Jesus, but urging the experience and practice of true disciples of Christ. Will it be asserted that the Apostle addressed his
countrymen nationally', as confirmed believers in the Lord Jesus? Surely not; and if not, to whom is his Epistle addressed? Obviously to individual believing Jews, of whatever tribe they might be; some, perhaps, of every tribe.
II. It is farther necessary to our proof, to mark the distinction between Judah, considered ?iationally, and certain individuals selected out of that nation, in each succeeding age, since the promulgation of the Gospel.
The Apostle Paul states this distinction pointedly, in Rom. ii. 28, 29. In one sense, all were Jews, wrho were circumcised in the flesh; they belonged to the nation: in another sense, those only were Jews who were circumcised in the heart also; they belonged to the election. This distinction between the nation and the election, is again strongly marked by the same Apostle; who, speaking of grace and salvation in Christ, saith, <c The nation hath not obtained the blessing; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded." Again he saith, "Hath God cast away his people? (without exception ?) God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin." Then follows, in the next verses, the distinction between the nation and the remnant which God foreknew. This was not a novel distinction; it had existed at all times; specially the Apostle referred to the days of Elijah the prophet, when this distinction is a clear matter of sacred history; the nation having been idolators, with the exception of seven thousand individuals, who constituted the reserved remnant. The same distinction existed in the days of Paul; the nation being cast away from God, with the exception of a remnant, the number of individuals composing which is not told us. This remnant formed the original stem of the Christian church —Jesus Christ, himself a Jew, being the root. This remnant composed, and still composes, some of the branches of the Christian tree. Into fellowship with this remnant, into participation* with these branches, the first converted Gentiles were admitted; and all converted Gentiles have been successively introduced. There is no such thing as a Gentile church: there is no such thing as a Jewish church: but elect Jews and Gentiles compose one church in Christ.