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11. "Then he said unto me, Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel."
Not the tribe of Judah alone, but " the whole house of Israel.
"Behold, they say our bones are dried, and our hope is lost. We are cut off' for our parts," or, "for us we are cut off. Therefore, prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah; Behold, O my people, 1 will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel."
You say your bones are dried, your case is hopeless as that of the dead: be it so, you shall—retaining the same figure—come up out of your graves.
"And ye shall know that I am Jehovah, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves; and shall put my Spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I will place you in your own land: then shall ye know, that I Jehovah have spoken it, and performed it, saith Jehovah."
Another symbolical representation follows of a fact before predicted, that at the restoration, Judah and the ten tribes shall be again united into one people and kingdom; this, assuredly, did not take place at the return of the captive Jews from Babylon.
15. " The word of Jehovah came again unto me, saying, Moreover, thou Son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it, For Judah, and for the children of Israel, his companions."
That is, the tribe of Benjamin, and some few of all the other tribes that followed the fortunes of Judah. For this was the description of that people that formed the nation of the Jews, after their return from Babylon. But this is not the union designated by the prophetical symbol that follows: —
"Then take another stick, and write upon it, For Joseph the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel, his companions; and join them one to another into one stick, and they shall become one in thine hand: and when the children of thy people shall speak unto thee, saying, Wilt thou not show us what thou meanest by these? Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah; Behold, 1 will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the ten tribes of Israel, his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand: and the sticks whereon thou writest shall be in thine hand before their eyes: and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the nations whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land, and I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel, and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two nations any more at all: neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions; but I will save them out of all their dwelling places wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their Elohim: and my servant, David, shall be king over them, and they all shall have one shepherd; they shall also walk in my judgments, and observe my statutes, and do them: and they shall dwell in the land that I have given unto Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, even they and their children, and their children's children, for ever; and my servant, David, shall be prince over them for ever."
"Moreover, I will make a covenant of peace with them, and it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will establish them, and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore. My tabernacle also shall be with them; ay, 1 will be their Elohim, and they shall be my people: and the nations shall know that I, Jehovah, do sanctify Israel, when my sanctuary shall be iu the midst of them for evermore."
The last part of this prediction, in my mind, strongly corroborates the notion of the re-establishment of the Theocracy over Israel — to be extended in its sway to the utmost borders of the earth. I believe, too, that the modelling of the ancient Israelitish commonwealth previously to the erection — or, perhaps, we may say toleration—of the monarchy, was symbolical of this future reign of the God-man. Israel is the consecrated portion of mankind in the flesh, * though not so exclusively so as heretofore; but they are the head of the nations, they have their priests and Levites. f Their civil governor will be of themselves, not, however, possessing regal dignity or authority; for Jehovah, their Elohim, will be their King. The sanctuary, as was represented in the earthly typical tabernacle, will be at once the shrine of their God, and the throne of their King. It is thus that he who is the Son of David after the flesh, will sit upon the throne of his kingdom. The cherubim also, that surrounded the mercy-seat, and in a manner covered in embroidery work the walls of the most holy place, were emblematical, as has been observed, of those saints that shall be then the glorified ministers of Christ's rule and dominion. Thus they are to reign with him over the nations upon earth.
• Isaiah, Ixi. 6.
f Jer. xxxiii. 21. Compare Isaiah, Ixvi. SI.
Remarks on the Expedition of Gog and Magog in the Thirtyeighth and Thirty-ninth Chapters.
The inroad of Israel's last enemy, the enemy that formerly scattered them, and will attack them after their restoration, has ever appeared a leading event in the predictions relating to these last times- This, indeed, is ever stated to be the conflict that brings on the actual manifestation of Christ, and of his kingdom. * We, accordingly, find the two next chapters of the prophet Ezekiel occupied on this momentous subject. The leading features of the description are the same as those of the former prophets. The armies assemble, and fall upon the mountains, and in the districts of Palestine;+ and the fire of Jehovah falls upon the particular country that is the victim of his long threatened wrath. +
"And the word of Jehovah came unto me, saying, Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech, and Tubal, and prophesy against him."
Or set thy face toward Gog, ' of the land of Magogs 'who is' the prince of Ros, Meshech, and Tubal, and prophesy concerning him. ||
* Deut. xxxii. 40, &c; 1 Sam. ii. 10; Psalm ex.; Isaiah, xl. 9, &c.; xlix. 24; li. 82; lix. 16, &c.; lxiii. 1. f Isaiah, xxxiv.; Joe), iii.
J Psalm xi. G; xxi. 9; lxviii.; lxxxix.; Isaiah, xxx. 27; xxxiii. 10 &c.; xxxiv. 9, &c.; lxvi. 16; Zeph. i. 14, &c. || Houbigant, Newcombe, Horsley.
Considerable mystery, it must be acknowledged, still hangs over this enumeration of the parties forming this last combination of Israel's foes. Of the meaning and origin of the term Gog, which seems to be a proper name, no, satisfactory account is given. If, however, the reading of the Samaritan, in Numbers, xxiv. 7, which is confirmed by the Septuagint, be correct, the term has already occurred. "His [Israel's] King shall be higher than Gog." Magog, Meshech, and Tubal, are all enumerated among the sons of Japheth;* as is also Gomer, mentioned in the next chapter: and we know concerning the sons of Japheth generally —" By these were the isles of the Gentiles divided in their lands; every one after his tongue, after their families, in their nations."-f It is clear, therefore, that some of the chief sources of European population are designated in the passage before us: and if geographers are right in their position of Magog, the ruling part of the population of modern Europe, as replenished from the barbarian nations of Scythia, is in an especial manner pointed out.
"Magog is, by the testimony of Josephus, Eustathius, St. Jerome, Theodoret, and, as Mr. Mede expresses it, by the consent of all men, placed north of Tubal, and esteemed the father of the Scythians, that dwelt on the east and north-east of the Euxine sea." —" In the panegyric of Tibullus to Messala, we find mention made by the poet of a people about the river Tannis, called Magini, which plainly carries in it a great affinity to Magog"—" so that it is not doubted but that these Magani were descendants of Magog at some distance, who spreading themselves further and further, came at length as far as the fiver
• Gen. x. 2. f See the first part of Dr. Wells's Geography.