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sitory of the Tables of the Law; and therefore the ark has been properly reckoned as one of the five things that were wanting in the second state of the temple. The Holy Place and the Holy of holies, in the last temple, had no wall across between them, but were separated, as in the tabernacle, simply by means of a veil, very costly, and remarkably thick and strong: the Jews say that it was not a single curtain that was employed for this purpose, but two of like texture, one being hung before the other a little distance from it. When our Saviour died, the whole was rent in twain from the top to the bottom! (Matt. xxvi. 51.) Hereby it was signified, that in the death of Christ the ancient Ceremonial System was brought to an end; that the darkness of the Jewish dispensation was to pass away in the clear revelation of the Gospel; and especially that the way into the holiest of all was now made completely open by his blood, for all believers to draw near to the mercy-seat of God, with holy liberty and confidence. (Heb. ix. 8. x. 19— 22.) The veil that separates man from his Maker, is guilt calling for wrath; and nothing can avail to rend the awful curtain but the death of Jesus Christ.
The bottom of the house of the temple was six cubits higher than the level of the Court of the priests around it. Thus, as there was a continual rise from one court to another, this holiest, highest spot, on which the Sanctuary stood, was as much as twenty-four cubits and a half above the level of that which was first entered-the Court of the Gentiles.
THE TOWER OF ANTONIA.
THERE was another building on this sacred hill that deserves particular notice. It stood on the outside of the Court of the Gentiles, joining the wall on the north, near to its western corner. It was builded originally by John Hyrcanus, the Jewish prince, a little more than a hundred years before the birth of Christ, and was used by himself and his successors as a palace, while at the same time it had all the strength and fortification of a castle. It was a square building, measuring two furlongs in compass, that is, as much as three hundred feet along each side. Here the sacred garments of the High-priests were kept, to be
taken out only on the solemn occasions that called for their use. Herod, with his other works of building, caused this also to put on new splendour and strength, and gave it a new name, calling it, in honour of the Roman prince Antony, Antonia. It was forty cubits high, and had at each of its corners a tower rising a number of cubits higher; the one at the south-east corner rose in this way as many as thirty, so that from it might easily be seen all that was done in any of the several courts of the temple. In this strong castle the Romans placed a garrison of soldiers, by which they had the whole hill completely under their power, and were enabled to hold the city in awe of their authority. This was considered especially important, as tumults and insurrections were ever likely to be excited, among the vast multitudes that were gathered to the temple at particular times. From the corner tower just mentioned, any disturbance might be at once perceived by the sentinel who was stationed there to keep watch, and immediately soldiers could be sent to quell it. There was a passage from the castle directly into the Court of the Gentiles, through the outer wall, by which they could enter the sacred enclosure at a moment's warning.
In this way, that tumult was restrained which was raised in the temple against the Apostle Paul. The Jews dragged him out of the Court of the Women into the Court of the Gentiles, (which was considered less holy, and was spoken of sometimes as being out of the temple-the name temple being used with a wider or narrower meaning at different times;) and here they purposed to kill him. The chief captain of the Roman band, however, receiving notice of the disorder, very soon appeared on the spot with a number of soldiers, and took him out of their hands, commanding him to be carried into the castle. When he came upon the stairs that led up into it, he was permitted to address the multitude below, till they interrupted him at last with loud and angry cries, when he was taken out of their sight and lodged within the walls of this magnificent fortress. (Acts xxi. 26-40. xxii. 1-24.)-Some have thought, that the commander of the Roman garrison in this castle, is the officer intended by the title Captain of the temple, used more than once in the New Testament: but it seems more
satisfactory to understand by that title, as hinted in a former part of this work, the chief of the Levites and priests who kept guard around and within the temple. (Acts iv. 1.)
It was a noble sight to look over the summit of Morian, crowned as we have now surveyed it with all the grandeur and beauty of the temple with its different courts. The Jewish historian Josephus, speaks of it as exceeding all description. The vast stones of polished marble, the stupendous pillars, the broad and lofty porches, the gates shining with the most precious metals, the towering front of the sanctuary-all united to fill the beholder with the highest admiration. Seen at a distance, by those who were approaching the city, it appeared, it is said, like a mountain covered with snow; for all over, except where broad plates of gold or silver dazzled the eye, it glistened with the whiteness of wrought marble. He that never saw Jerusalem in her glory, say the ancient Jewish Doctors, never saw a lovely city; and he that never saw the sanctuary, with its buildings, never saw the most noble fabric under the sun.
It was not without reason, therefore, that the disciples of the Saviour a certain occasion commended with admiration in his presence the grand and beautiful appearance of the temple. As he went out of it on the east side going over to the Mount of Olives, they directed his attention to the rich and splendid style in which it was builded and adorned: Master, said one of them, see what manner of stones and what buildings are here! Jesus saw all this; but he looked upon as a sight of mere earthly glory that was very soon to pass away. Seest thou these great buildings? he replied: there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down. (Mark xiii. 1—4.)
And so it came to pass in less than forty years after. The whole perished in the awful destruction of the city by the Romans. Titus, the Roman general, wished to save it; but the violence of war was too strong to be restrained in its progress. It carried its torch to the sacred pile, and wrapped all the glory of Moriah in wild and terrific flames. This melancholy ruin of the second temple is said to have been accomplished in the same month of the year, and on
the same day of that month, which, more than six hundred years before, had witnessed the destruction of the first one by the Babylonians. After the flames had done their work, the walls were utterly demolished to the bottom, and the whole ground on which they stood ploughed up, according to the Roman custom; so that, as Christ had foretold, not a single stone was left in its place. (Micah iii. 12.)
Here ended, for ever, the glory of the Jewish temple. It was never again to rise on its ruins, as before. Its whole meaning and use were over. The dispensation to which it belonged was brought to a close. The time was come, when neither at Jerusalem, nor at any other particular place, the Father was to be worshipped with such outward service as was required under the law. (John iv. 21-24.) The purpose of the Most High, therefore, forbade all restoration of the ancient sanctuary. An attempt, indeed, was made to restore it, about three hundred years after its last destruction, which seemed to have, as far as human calculation could reach, the greatest prospect of success; but God crushed it at the very start. The Roman Emperor, Julian, (who had pretended, in early life, to be a Christian, but afterwards, when he came to the throne, turned to be a pagan idolater, bitterly opposed to the truth of the gospel, and so got the name of Apostate,) gave the Jews permission to rebuild their temple, and renew their long neglected worship. They set about the work with alacrity and high hope. But very soon they were compelled to stop. While the workmen were clearing away the rubbish, in order to lay the foundations, great balls of fire, dreadful to behold, bursting forth from the ground with terrible noise, and repeated earthquakes, full of strangeness and horror, caused every person to fly from the place, and so put an end to the work. Thus wonderfully, as we are assured by the most satisfactory testimony of history, did God blow upon and blast the design that was formed to counteract his holy will.
MINISTERS OF THE TABERNACLE AND
GOD separated the tribe of Levi from all the other tribes, to attend upon the services of the sanctuary. They were taken in room of the first-born. (Num. iii. 5—13. 40-51. viii. 16-19.) They were not allowed, accordingly, to have any inheritance to themselves as a tribe among the others. which composed the nation. The family of Aaron was taken out of this sacred tribe, and consecrated to the priesthood, to which the care of the most holy duties, and the privilege of the nearest approaches to the Divine Majesty were confined. The rest of the Levites were appointed to attend to duties less solemn.
THE Levites were solemnly set apart to their ministry in the following way.-1. Having washed and shaved the whole body, they presented themselves before the tabernacle with two young bullocks, one for a burnt offering, the the other for a sin offering. 2. They were sprinkled with water of purifying by Moses. 3. The leading men of the whole nation laid their hands upon them, and by this ceremony offered them to God as substitutes for themselves, and in the room of their first-born. 4. Aaron offered them before the Lord, or, as it is literally expressed in the Hebrew, waved them for a wave-offering, before the Lord; perhaps by causing them to fall down before God towards his holy Tabernaele, or as others have supposed, by requiring them to walk solemnly around the altar, in token of their dedication to the Lord, as living sacrifices for his use. 5. They