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resist it. Remember, that the greatest power on earth, after all, is the law of kindness.
And I can easily believe you will remember it. I almost wish I could as easily call up from her native seas the mighty majesty of Britain, that we might have her here, a vision throned, and hear with our own ears her solemn protestation : to what effect? To promote the ambitious projects of any Israelite whatever? I pray the God of heaven to avert such omen! Great evil, as well as great good, may yet, and probably will, spring up out of this people. No, but that she will never be forgetful of what shall become her own august character as to whatsoever may either now, or ever hereafter shall, concern the high and paramount interests of the temporal and spiritual kingdom of the Son of God. Yet, vain were the wish that voice of man should reach her ear ; the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob, will speak to her heart, and she will hear his voice, saying; “ This is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations : and this is my promise unto Abraham, my friend; I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee." Great potentate as she is, whose dowry is the ocean, whom the Almighty arbiter of nations hath exalted and distinguished with all blessings, temporal and spiritual, above every other people, ancient or modern, under the dome of heaven; so far above them all, that in his favour she still stands, second only to this her sister, her fallen sister, Judah; God himself hath so obviously destined her to some yet unknown, but mighty moral purpose of his own, that she may be trusted, she never will forget that royal house, nor the Lion of Judah, nor his motto, nor whose hand engraved it, 66 Thy hand in the neck of thine enemies." Who shall rival Judah ?
But you, the children of Great Britain, who, perhaps, already stand on tiptoe to catch the first gleam, if peradventure the glory of the Lord may begin to flatter the mountain-tops, or, at least, are expecting, when the standard of Judah unfurling shall marshal the processions of the holy people, yet pause; eager as your humanity may be, it must be damped when you shudder at the thought of that last, that bitter tribulation. Even your charity must begin at home. Suffer me to remind you also of the fearful forewarnings of the Sacred Book, concerning those calamities of the latter days, which the Gentiles, as well as the Jews, have yet to pass through-that tide of calamities, secretly and insensibly setting in, so that no man alive may be able to say where the salt and the
freshes meet; though every babe shall but too surely know when it is at the flood.
Whatever secondary causes may have hitherto checked the concentration of so terrible a power as that which is the burden of all Divine prophecies, those causes shall not always continue to operate: the sure word of prophecy foretels, that, to the astonishment of the world, yet a mighty power (be it universal empire, confederacy, usurpation, or whatsoever the event may show), a mighty power, of contemptible origin indeed, and stealthy of growth at first, but suddenly expanded into a horrible magnitude; of short existence also, but of outrageous impiety and violence, hurrying within its vortex whatsoever lives upon the surface of what was once the territory of all the ancient empires; this prodigious birth of time must still precede the kingdom of the Son of God. This is no dead monster of the imagination, to be contemplated without dread, and even with satisfaction; this is the sure word of prophecy unfulfilled.
I abstain from quoting the Apocalypse, that great prophecy to the Gentile Church, because each quotation would require an exposition; you know, in general, what shall be the character of the last war upon earth. Who can fix its period? One thing is obvious; that among the nations of
the world there is even now a general pause, like the pause just before battle; a suspense greater than which could scarcely be, if all men knew for certain that the last war was already come.
But if you, for one, see no such portentous signs abroad, that itself is the greatest sign. As for those who tremble at the Word of God, and who thence have learned that persecution, as well as war, rapine, and destruction, shall be one feature of the great tribulation ; how awful is both the suspense and the obscurity which broods over their minds; while Providence Divine appears to be gradually darkening the stage, for the catastrophe of this deep tragedy, The fall of man.
For, from what quarter cometh this Satanic woe? Wherefore doth the Lord prepare to pour down upon the earth the vials of his wrath? Why should all nations thus rise up against Jerusalem ? Who are they? The nations of the west, or the kings of the east? A confederacy of both ? And who shall lead them on, Jew or Gentile? When those armies shall be mustering in the field, will the dæmons of infidelity, imposture, and anarchy, seize the opportunity to career it everywhere at home? Will those maniacs, burst from prison, march themselves, the miscreants of that war, the confederates of that Antichrist, to challenge the charge upon their devoted heads, of all Messiah's
embattled hosts, his own crusade? Woe to the annihilated wretch that shall contend with his Maker!
Thus we conjecture in the dark, and like a knot of Arabs in the desert, discussing each casual foot-print in the sand, its direction or date; which way danger journeys; how far off it lurks; so what more common now, than for those who fear the Lord to speak often one to another, and much in like manner; their attention fixed on everything that can give them information, and every one, as though his own personal safety were precarious, moving forward with the utmost circumspection?
The footsteps of our God we may not trace, whose path is not in the sand but in the great waters; what then? All prophecies, and all miracles combine to
us, that neither matter, nor fate, nor man, are masters of the world; but that he who made all still overrules all, and will judge all: yes, they who will not be redeemed, can neither will nor choose, but needs must be judged. Evil, indeed, will be the Woe of the earth ; but the vials of heaven shall be worse. And furthermore, are they indeed so omniscient as to be absolutely certain, that there is positively no hell? No terror nor torments of a never-dying death?