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2. There is another thing which prevents attending to the prophecies in a right manner, and that is, people have a kind of general system concerning what is to be hereafter, and thinking their system is right, they sup. pose the scriptures mutt mean their fyltems, let it say what it will. This is a very great disadvantage to people. We are in general taught, that all men are guilty of Adam's sin, that some are made to be saved and some to be damned, that after a few years, the sun moon and stars will be annihilated and that after this, in some part of God's dominion, there is a wonderful place, called Heaven, and in some part of immensity, a place called Hell, where the wicked will be cormented without end, and be eternally raging, and blafpheming God, being in the presence of the saints and angels forever. Some suppose that after all the torments they endure, they will at last be delivered and enter into Paradise. While people are taught these things, which differ from each other, and from the scriptures, it is not strange that they do not take heed to the PROPHECIES as a fure word. The finall knowledge which people in general have of the fcriptures, is used to support what they are taught to call divinity.
So long as people believe that the plain declarations of scripture do not mean as they say ; so long they will remain ignorant of the real beauty and excellency of the fure word of prophecy.
In order to take heed to the prophecies as a light shining in a dark place, we ought to distinguish between that part of the scriptures which is a PROPHECY, and that which is history, parables, or the rule of conduct in this present life. To know the truth of the Prophecies,which are yet to be accomplished, we ought to consider, how those prophecies were fulfilled, which the history of their accomplishment contains. The prophecies which spake of the Birth of Christ, the fon of a Virgin, were fulfilled, exactly according to the prediction, and so were those which foretold his life, his death, and the things which took place immediately after his being received up into glory.
As all these things are faid to take place exactly as they are stated, we may fafely conclude that what is yet to take place, will hereafter come to pass as it is laid down in the scriptures of truth. Viewing the prophecies in this way, as a light unto us in this world, whatever things this light discovers, we ought to believe, and conlider true.
With this belief of the prophecies, what a glorious scene is presented to our minds by the light of PROPHciees, when we consider that the things mentioned in the foregoing fermons will take place as they are recorded in the scriptures of truth ! How must every believing heart grow warm while he views the promises made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and when he considers that God will ere long perform all he promised these men, as it respects themselves, their land, and their children!
How glorious do the prophecies appear which speak of the new covenant with the Jews, which shall hereafter be made with that long neglected people, when they hall come from different parts of the earth where they are now scattered, and be settled in the land of their Fathers, according to their old estates, never more to be scattered abroad among all nations ! Consider this to be the meaning of the new covenant, and it appears worthy of a God of truth.
While we read that Jesus shall return to the mount of Olives to overcome his foes, deliver the Jews, reigh over Jerusalem, and be the King over all the earth, causing wars to cease to the ends of the earth! How glorious iš the prospect before every believer ! Especially, when he reads in the prophecy of this glorious event, that all the dead saints Thall rise to reign with him one thousand years, before the wicked rife, and though we are sewn by the light of prophecy, that after this, satan will for a short time deceive the nations; and that at the last judge ment, satan with all the enemies of Jefus, will be destroya ed; yet what glory is there shewn us by the prophecy, in the new heaven and earth, and now Jerusalem, where changes, troubles, forrow, and death are no more. These things I believe in, rejoice in, look, and long for.
2. The apostles tells us that taking heed to the prophecies RS they are laid down, is, doing well.
In several particulars we do well to attend to the prophecies, as they are recorded.
1. It is honoring God our Creator. There cannot be a greater dishonor done to a superior, than to say that he does not mean as he says; for it makes him a deceiver ; the person who believes the prophecies, and believes they mean as they say,has a much greater idea,than those who do not, of what God will do hereafter, as the man has greater ideas of creation, who believes the sun, moon, and stars, are worlds as great or greater than this, has above the man who considers the heavenly bodies as only small specks in the firmament, to afford light to this earth.
How amazing must our thoughts of God be, when we believe that he knew of all these great and glorious things from the beginning! And when we consider that his power is as great to perform, as his knowledge is to forewell!
2. It is doing well, because it gives us an exalted idea of what Christ, under God, will do before he gives up the kingdom, and what he will have when he reigns in the new Jerusalem with all his faints forever.
3. To take heed to the prophecies is doing well for ourselves, in this way, we have a light all the journey through life, in whatsoever situation we are in, if pover. ty, afiction, pain, or loss attend us, the prophecy of fu. ture glory, will lead us to glory in tribulation, knowing that through much tribulation we must enter into the kingdom, where the righteous shall shine as the sun forever, in that day which will dawn at the resurrection of the just, a day without night, forrow, death, or crying.
I now close this fabje&t fo glorious, believing in the prophecies, and feeling conscious that I have written according to the understanding God has given me by his word and spirit, which taught me to know and love she truth as it is in Jesus.
To the blessing of God I commend this feeble attempt to increase the knowledge of the fure word of prophecy. It is possible, that many who read this work may never see my face in time, and it is likely that some at least will read it when I am laid away in duft.
Dear reader, I have one request to make, that is, not to believe, or disbelieve what is stated in this book, on my testimony barely ; but search the scriptures whether these things are so. If you are unbelievers, repent, and believe the gospel. If you are believers, pray for me, for yourselves, live as pilgrims, and long for glory ; such, through grace, I hope to meet in the New JerusaLEM,where Jesus shall be our light, our glory, and our joy forever.... To him be glory in the church, throughout
ages, world without end, Amen and Amen.
NO. COPIES. WILLIAM ALBEY, Wiscasset, Maine,
1 Andrew W. Adams, Durham, Maine,
1 Alexander Alexander, Portland,
1 Catherine Atwood, Haverhill, Massachusetts,
1 Reuben Atkins, Cabbot, Vermont,
1 Asa Ayers, New-Gloucester, Naine,
i Joseph Ayers, Portland,
1 James Anderson, Salem, Massachusetts,
8 8 8 32 1 1 1 1
Daniel Buswell, Bradford, Massachusetts,
Thomas H. Burnham, Ipswich, Massachusetts,
2 1 1 1 1