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even as Pilgrims upon the Earth. He that felleth, let him be as him that fleeth away; and he that buyeth, as one that fhall lofe: He that occupieth Merchandize, as he that hath no Profit by it : And be that buildeth, as he that shall not dwell therein: He that foweth, as if he should not reap: So also be that planteth the Vineyard, as he that Shall not gather the Grapes: They that marry, as though they should get no Children; and they that marry not, as the Widowers: And therefore they that labour, labour in vain, 2 Efd. 16. 40. Hence alfo our Bleffed Saviour, Matth. 24. 16. warns his Difciples, and in them all Chriftians, that when they shall see the Abo mination of Defolation in the Holy Place: That is, in its compleat and ultimate Meaning, Antichrift; but in a more lax and open Senfe, Sin and Error patroniz'd and juftify'd in thofe Places, and by thofe Perfons where, and amongft whom, nothing but Truth and Holinefs ought to be found; that then, in Expectation of the approaching Judgments, They that are in Judea should flee unto the Mountains: Which Words, tho' in their firft and literal Signification they did imply, that the Jews, when they faw Ferufalem compaffed about with Armies, Thould take that for a Signal to escape to the Hill-Countries of Judea, that fo they might be more out of the reach of the Roman Armies: Yet in a myftical Senfe, the fame may be apply'd to all Chriftians; underftanding by the Hills, the Everlafting Hills, the Heavenly Mountains of Vertue and Contemplation, from whence alone wę muft expect Help and Protection. Pfal. 121. D 2
v. I. Then be that is upon the Houfe-top; that is, advanced in the Spiritual Life, let him not come down to take any thing out of his Houfe; i. e. let him not condefcend to intermix with the impertinent and trifling Concerns of this World. And let not him that is in the Field; i. e. working in God's Vineyard, return to take away his Cloaths; i. e. return to his old cloathing which was not of God's Spirit, Ifa. 30. 1. and which must be taken off, to dif cover the nakednefs of those who are not cloathed with the true cloathing, which is the Righteousness of the Saints, Rev. 3.18. 19.8. and fo on; teaching us thereby, the Neceffity of with-drawing our Affections from thofe Pleasures and Enjoyments which muft be forfaken, when we fhall be forc'd to leave. all, and fhift for our felves. For it is probable, that as God hath generally dealt with his Servants at fuch times, fo he will deal with them then, i. e. by fome fecret means or other, warn them to escape out of thofe Places which are in danger. So God did to Lot in the Deftruction of Sodom and Gomorrah; and so (to mention no more) Ecclefiaftical Hiftory informs us, that he did to the Chriftians in Jerufalem, a little before its Deftruction, warning them to efcape to Pella, a little Ancient City of Paleftine, not far off. So it is probable God will deal with his Servants again, even fo many of us, as have in the Faith and Expection of this time of tryal, waited patiently in the way of the Crofs, for that Spirit of Adoption and Sealing, which shall baptize us into that living Communion and
Fellowship of Love, where those VirginSouls, in whatever Kingdom, Country, or Nation, they are hidden, fcatter'd, and difperfed, fhall be united in the Spirit and Center of Unity, which is the true Communion of Saints, John 17. 21. Eph. 1. 10. 4. 13. to whom the Glory of the MountSion Kingdom fhall come, confifting in a perfect Security from the Curfe, where Darkness, Sin and Death, are perfectly fwallow'd up in Victory.
S9. THE Sum of what is here advanced 9. A Recafeems to be elegantly comprized in the pitulation of the 9th Chapter of the Prophecy of Ezekiel, whole. In the preceding Chapter God shows the Prophet in a Vision, the Abomination in the Holy Place, which provokes him to Jealoufy, and to bring Ruine and Defolation on the Church and Nation of the Jews. Thus he speaks, v. 17, 18. Haft thou Seen this? (i. e. The various kinds of Idolatry afore-mentioned) Is it a light thing to the, Houfe of Judah, that they commit the Abominations which they commit here? For they have fil led the Land with Violence, and have returned to provoke me to Anger; and lo! they put the Branch to their Nofe: Therefore will I also deal in Fury: Mine Eye alfo fhall not Spare: Neither will I have pity: And though they cry in mine Ears with a loud Voice, I will not hear them. By the Jewish Church in this Place, which was then the Peculium or Vifible Church, we may understand, in a myftical Senfe, the Chriftian; whofe Abominations when they are come to the heighth, call for the fame Vengeance and Judgments as theirs
did. And accordingly in Chap. 9. he be gins to show how the Vengeance is executed. The firft Thing remarkable is, a great Cry to them that had the Charge of the City, to come near every Man with his de ftroying Weapon in his Hand. Which may anfwer to the Cry and Roaring afore-mentioned, out of the Prophet Joel and the Reve lations; And behold fix Men came from the way of the higher Gate, which lyeth toward the North, and every Man a flaughter (or breaking) Weapon in his Hand: By the Number Six we are to understand deftroying (and probably evil) Angels, the Executioners of the Divine Vengeance, to whom the Number* Six is moft fitly apply'd; expreffing this Num- that they have not yet attained to the ber is thrice bleffed Septenary of Harmony and Peace, where all Discord and Strife are done away, aeriftick being swallowed up in the Univerfal Prin of Anti- ciple of Reft and Love. The next Thing chrift,Rev. obfervable is, that they came from the North; xiii. 18. that being, as was before obferved, the
Region of the Curfe and of Vengeance. And one Man among (or in the midft of) them, was cloathed with Linnen, with a Writers Inkhorn by his fide, v. 2. In the midst of these fix Deftroyers is a feventh Perfon, coming in the Spirit of Peace and Mercy, figured by the Number Seven; he is cloathed with Linnen, fignifying Evangelical Righteoufnefs, Rev. 19. 8. And the Glory of the God of Ifrael was gone up from the Cherub whereupon he was, to the Threshold of the House. The * Word which we tranflate Threshold, feems to have been otherwise understood by the
LXX in this Place, having tranflated it lerov, as they have alfo in three other Places of this Prophecy; a Word fignifying the open Air, or the Door-place, as it is used in three Places of the 40th Chapter of this Prophecy; it has also been used to fignify the Covering or Roof of a Houfe; whence Arealov in Sophocles, is rendered by the Scholiafts Deguòv narazítačμa; all importing the departure of the Shecinah, or Glorious Prefence, from the Cherubims to the Door, the Roof or Covering of the Houfe; by all which we are to understand God's forfaking his Church, because of the full Measure of their Iniquities. And be called to the Man cloathed with Linnen, that had the Writer's Inkhorn by his fide, v. 3. And the Lord faid unto him, Go through the midst of the City, through the midst of Ferufalem, and fet a Mark upon the Foreheads of the Men that figh, and that cry for all the Abominations that be done in the midft thereof, v. 4. Here we fee God's firft and principal Care is to show Mercy to his chofen Children and Servants, by marking them as his peculiar Property, as Perfons on whom the Curfe can have no Power; and fo we find in Holy Scripture, that Vengeance cannot be powered out till the Servants of God are fafe and out of Danger. So the Angel that was commiffioned to deftroy Sodom and Gomorrah, advises Lot to make hafte to escape to his little City of Refuge; For (faith he, Gen. 19. 22.) I cannot do any thing Í till thou be come thither. So Rev. 7. 3. The Angels are commanded, Hurt not the Earth, neither