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their corrupt nature, into the glorious liberty of the children of God. (Rom. viii. 21.) But conclusions are superfluous.
When Elias re-appeared, he then appeared in glory;* and that a
until the final consummation. At that awful juncture those that are alive (should Omniscience know that they have, through the preceding tribulation, been purified and fitted in this particular instance for his immediate acceptance) may, when spiritualized and glorified, both in soul and body, which will be effected in the twinkling of an eye, join the triumphant host of victors, who, on the last glorious day, will with their blessed Lord enter into the third and highest heavens; and there be ever with the Lord.
Should any be then alive on whom Omniscience knows the purification of the intermediate sanctuary cannot be dispensed with, they may be ordained for a season to remain there and partake its cleansing ordinances, and here be present with the Lord, as our separated spirits will be. And should these be destined to remain here until the final consummation of the new creation, which we know is to succeed the dissolution of the present one, (Rev. xxi. 5,) they would only be similarly circumstanced as to the duration of their abode, with Abel, or any other worthy of the pristine era. Those that are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord, and who have neglected to improve the unparalleled affliction which will precede his coming unto their souls' advantage, and whom Omniscience foreknows will never be reformed, will then undoubtedly have their portion assigned among the castaways.
* Moses also, it is true, appeared likewise in glory; and he, we know, died and was buried in the land of Moab. " And the Lord said unto Moses, Behold, thou shalt sleep with thy fathers. Get thee up into this mountain Abarim, unto Mount Nebo, which is in the land of Moab, that is over against Jericho; and behold the land of Canaan, which I give unto the children of Israel for a possession : and die in the mount whither thou goest up, and be gathered unto thy people. And Moses went up from the plains of Moab unto the mountain of Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, that is over against Jericho. And the Lord shewed him all the land of Gilead unto Dan, &c. &c. So Moses,
glorified body and a spiritual body are syno nymous, the following passages clearly prove.
the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the Lord. And he buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, over against Beth-peor : but no man knoweth of his sepulchre unto this day.” (Deut. xxxi. 16; xxxii. 49,50; xxxiv. 1, 5, 6.) He was buried by the agency of angels, (Jude 9.) as most commentators justly suppose, in an unknown place, to prevent the children of Israel from the guilt of idolatry by worshipping the remains of Moses. Mr. Orton's observation is as follows: “ God, by the ministration of bis Son, or his angels, buried him in some place that Israel knew not, to prevent their superstition and idolatry in paying any undue regard to his remains." (Jude 9.) Josephus tells us,
" that a man is not to lament at the instant of his death, (because it happens to him both according to the will of God and the law of nature ;) yet Moses beholding the affection of the people, could not restrain himself from tears. After which, he walked towards the place where he was to die, and they all followed him weeping. Then did Moses (beckoning with his hand) warn them from afar off, that they should stand still, and keep their places; and he desired them that were nearest him, by word of mouth, not to afflict him any longer, by following him with so many testimonies of affection. Accordingly, to obey him, they stood still, and altogether bewailed their calamity in so great and so general a loss; only the senator Eleazer, the high priest, and the chief captain Joshua, accompanied him. And when he was arrived on the mountain called Abarim, (which is very high,) and situate near Jericho, from whence he might discover the greater part of the land of Canaan, he dismissed the elders; and whilst with mutual embraces he took his last leave of Eleazer and Joshua, and discoursed with them, a cloud suddenly environed him, and he was carried away into a certain valley: but the holy books which he left us, say that he died, fearing lest, for the excellence of his virtue, they might report that he was taken up into heaven. The whole of his life was a hundred and twenty years, the third part whereof, wanting a month, he spent in the government of this great people.
“We are sown in dishonour, but raised in glory; we are sown a natural body, but raised a spiritual
He died the last month of the year, and the first day of that month which the Macedonians call Dystros, and our countrymen Ader.” And there can be no doubt but that he really died, as holy writ records that he was gathered to his fathers. Now, a question here arises, (as the human nature of Moses was unquestionably deposited in its native earth, and was gathered to its fathers,) whether it was the spirit of Moses that appeared in glory, or whether the body of Moses had at some juncture preceding that transcendent revelation, the transfiguration of our blessed Lord, been revivified through the almighty power of Him who is the resurrection and the life, consigned to the care of his angelic messengers, by them conveyed into his paradisaic region, and there united to his departed (and it may be, glorified) spirit, to await with all saints, the great day of retribution. And that his human nature had been so revivified and reunited to its old companion, we conceive most probable, because it is expressly said, that when the fashion of our blessed Redeemer's countenance was altered, and his raiment became white and glistering, behold there talked with him two men, which were Moses and Elias. (Luke ix. 29, 30.) And we think Moses could not with truth have been denominated a man, had not his humanity been rejoined to his spiritual nature ; and that this had been the case seems to be the opinion of our ablest commentators. We shall only insert one instance: “In the sixteenth chapter of St. Matthew Christ tells his disciples, that when He comes in the glory of his father with the holy angels, He will reward every man according to his work ; (verse 27 ;) from whence it necessarily follows, that every man that is dead shall rise from his grave: and, in confirmation of both these truths, there are two just and righteous men, Moses and Elias, who had many years before departed out of the world, brought back to it again, and represented, as we shall see hereafter, in a state of glory. That they actually appeared in their own proper persons, there is not the least reason to doubt. Grotius even goes so far as to affirm, that their bodies were reserved for this very purpose; but there is no necessity nor no ground for this imagination,
body.” (1 Cor. xv.) All that we here know of
For though, indeed, the sepulchre of Moses was not known, yet his body was actually buried in a valley in the land of Moab, and therefore must bave seen corruption; and, as the whole transaction was miraculous, it was just as easy to Omnipotence to restore life and form to a body mouldered into dust, as to re-animate a body that was preserved uncorrupted and entire, and, indeed, was a much exacter emblem of our own resurrection. We may, however, readily admit what some learned men have justly observed, that Elias having been carried up into heaven without undergoing death, he was here a proper representative of those who shall be found alive at the day of judgment, as Moses is of those who had died and are raised to life again; and his appearance a second time on earth, after he had been so many ages dead and buried, must have been a convincing proof to the disciples (had they duly attended to it) of the possibility of a resurrection." (Dr. Porteus's Lecture on St. Matthew, vol. ii. p. 47.) This recital plainly ascertains Dr. Porteus's opinion to be, that the body of Moses had been raised to life, and united to its former spiritual inmate, previous to its appearing in glory on the glorious mount of transfiguration; and the passage from St. Jude, which has been just alluded to, not only favours the supposition that God buried Moses by the ministration of angels, but also that his body, subsequent to its revivification through the Almighty power of God, was by him consigned to the care of angels, and those of the highest order; for it is recorded that the great accuser presumptuously and impiously disputed with Michael the archangel about the body of Moses, which clearly elicits that this highest of all dignities, this puissant prince of angels (Dan. xii. 1,) had been delegated to take charge of the body of Moses, most probably both at its interment and its revivification. By three of our blessed Lord's apostles having been honoured, by being made eyewitnesses of his majesty upon the mountain Tabor, where He received from God the Father bonour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased,” (2 Pet. i. 16,17,) and by Moses and Elias appearing with him in glory, four things of
spiritual existence is, that it is capable of a far
high importance for us to know are clearly demonstrated to us. First, the glory which the Son had with the Father before the world was ; (John xvii. 5;) secondly, the glory with which He will be glorified in his conjoined natures, human and divine, subsequent to his ascension into the holiest of holies; thirdly, by Elijah appearing in glory, (as he, we know, bore our humanity into the paradisaic region, it is very fully proved that if man had retained his innocence that he would not have tasted death, but, like to Enoch and Elijah, have been, in their conjoined natures, carnal and spiritual, carried up to paradise, have there had wrought on them an instantaneous change like unto that which we are told is to be effected on those that remain and are alive at the coming of our Lord; fourthly, and lastly, by Moses appearing in glory as he had died on our earth and had been buried in it; (there being every reason to believe that his re-appearance was in his conjoined natures, carnal and spiritual, consequently, that his mortal body had been raised from the dead, and re-united to its former spiritual companion, the spirit of the just, who, we know, are ordained to rest in paradise until the final consummation;) a symbol was displayed, and a full proof was given, of the glory wherewith we shall be invested at the resurrection of the just, when, we know on high authority, we shall be raised in glory, and be made like unto our Lord, for we shall see him as he is. (1 John iii. 2.) But even supposing the body of Moses not to have been revivified and rejoined to its former companion, the spirit of this just man might have appeared in glory, for the separated spirits of the just are doubtless glorious beings. We know that spiritual beings are glorious beings; God has made his angels spirits, and they are glorious beings; and God is himself a spirit, and he is all-glorious.
Before we dismiss this subject it should not pass unremarked, that the Scriptures present four instances of persons having been raised from the dead previous to the resurrection of Christ; and that these relations do not accord altogether with the declaration which asserts that Christ is the first fruits of them that slept. (1 Cor. xv. 20.) We therefore conclude this declaration as unquestionably asserting, that Christ is the first fruits