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considered him worthy of the three greatest privileges ; the government of his nation, the dignity of the high priesthood, and prophecy; for God was with him, and enabled him to know futurities.” It was revealed to him in a dream that his two oldest sons would not succeed him, but that the youngest would inherit his kingdom. When his sons gained a victory, he announced it at the very moment, though he was at Jerusalem, two days' journey from the field of battle. They said it was told to him by Bath Kol. Josephus also assumes something of this gift for himself. He tells us that he "dreamed dreams in the night time, whereby God signified to him the future calamities of the Jews.” He foretold on what day the city he was defending would be taken by the Romans, and himself made prisoner. He likewise predicted that Vespasian, who was then a general, would become emperor. Philo, the learned Alexandrian Jew, describes a prophet as being "a mere interpreter during the time he is under enthusiasm; being himself in ignorance, his reasoning faculties receding and withdrawing from the citadel of his mind, and the Divine Spirit coming upon and dwelling in him, impelling and directing the organism of his voice to a distinct manifestation of what the Spirit predicts.”

The learned commentator De Wette remarks that "the miraculous diminishes in proportion as we approach historical times. In the earliest times, men have intercourse, with angels; at a later period, angels appear as messengers between God and men; still later, the prophets perform the miraculous; in times after the exile, from which we have contemporary accounts, the miraculous ceases altogether."

It is evident that Hebrews, at all periods of their his. tory, adopted the prevailing idea of subordinate Spirits employed by The Highest as mediums of communication with men. In the most ancient portion of their Sacred Writings, God is called Elohim, which, being a plural word, necessarily implies more than one. The “Spirit of God" is likewise spoken of as "moving on the face of the

waters.” God said: “Let us make man after our image. Man is become as one of us. Let us go down and confound their language.” Jewish Rabbins explained these passages by saying that God addressed himself to his council of angels. Hindoo Sacred Books describe Gandharvas, beautiful "Spirits of Singing Stars," who rejoice together and sing, when any great or good work is accomplished by superior deities. Job also says: “When the foundations of the earth were fastened, and the cornerstone thereof was laid, the Morning Stars sang together, and all the Sons of God shouted for joy.” In the Psalms it is promised, “He shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.” In the book of Kings, the Lord is described like an Asiatic monarch, “sitting on his throne, with all the host of heaven standing by him, on his right hand and on his left.” Moses accused the people of sacrificing "unto Devils, not unto God." The Hebrew word used signifies Destroyers, Spirits delighting in mischief. “An Evil Spirit from the Lord” is said to have taken possession of Saul. Isaiah alludes to "Lucifer, son of the morning." The name signifies Bringer of Light, and was probably applied to the Spirit of the Morning Star. The author of the book of Job says: “The sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them.” The captivity in Babylon greatly influenced Hebrew habits of thought, by making them familiar with Chaldean and Persian ideas. They had always believed in Evil Spirits employed by Jehovah to accomplish his own purposes; but not until the Babylonian captivity do they seem to have formed the idea of one great rebellious Spirit, in opposition to Deity, like the Persian Arimanes. Daniel, Ezekiel, and Zechariah, who wrote after that period, make frequent allusion to Spirits. Zechariah is the only one who mentions Satan. He describes him as the adversary of Jerusalem, standing before the angel of the Lord, to resist Joshua the High Priest. That each nation had its own guardian spirit, was the universal idea. Daniel alludes to the archangel Michal, as if

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he believed him to be the peculiar protector of the Jewish nation. The author of the book of Tobit mentions Seven Spirits, which seem very like the Persian Amshaspands. Raphael is represented as saying: “I am one of the seven holy angels, which present the prayers of the saints, and go in and out before the glory of the Holy One.”

In order to state clearly some spiritual changes that took place among the Jews, it is necessary to glance at the progress of their external history. From the time of Cyrus, Judea remained more than two hundred years dependent on Persia; but their internal affairs were under the direction of High Priests and Elders, who governed according to the Mosaic constitution. This remnant of the children of Israel were more enterprising than their fathers had been. Commerce, which the old prophets had always stigmatized as “harlotry” with other nations, was continually on the increase; and as all Jews were obliged to make annual pilgrimages to the temple, and pay tithes of their revenue, more wealth was accumulated at Jerusalem than had been sent there even in the days of Solomon. When Alexander the Great conquered Persia, Palestine became tributary to him, and was involved in subsequent wars of his generals. One of these, Ptolemy, king of Egypt, besieged Jerusalem and took it. The place, being strongly fortified, both by nature and art, might perhaps have held out long against him, had he not been sufficiently cunning to attack it on the Sabbath, when he knew the inhabitants deemed it unlawful to do anything, even for the defence of their lives. The Jews did not suffer by this change of masters, for Ptolemy did not interfere with their internal government, or with any of their peculiar customs. The successors of Alexander the Great, who governed the Syrian portion of his empire, contended with those who governed the Egyptian portion; and Judea passed under the dominion of Syrio-Macedonian kings. One of these, Antiochus Fourth, issued a decree that all people under his government should conform to the religion of their king, and worship the same gods in the same


manner he did. This was doubtless aimed principally at the Jews; for the worship of other nations under his sway too much resembled his own, to provoke such a law. He sent overseers into all the provinces of his empire, to instruct people how to worship according to one model. Jews were forbidden to circumcise their children, to observe any of their religious festivals, or offer sacrifices to the God of Israel. They were ordered to eat the flesh of swine, and other animals, which their law pronounced unclean. Copies of the Law of Moses were hunted up, and destroyed wherever they could be found. The temple was robbed of its ornaments, and polluted by the introduction of things abhorrent to Jewish feeling. An image of Jupiter was set up in the inner court, with an altar for sacrifice before it. Statues and altars were placed in all the groves. People were commanded to worship them, and whoever disobeyed was put to death. Fear, and a desire to gain favour with the king, induced some to com. ply; but great numbers cheerfully sacrificed their lives, rather than prove false to their religion. Mattathias, a man of rank and character among the priests, was offered riches and honours if he would set the people an example in the worship of Jupiter. But with a loud voice, in hearing of all, he proclaimed that no commands, and no rewards, should ever induce him or his family to depart from the law of their God. When he saw one of the Jews approach the altar of Jupiter, to worship as the king had decreed, in the heat of his zeal he fell upon him and the royal commissioner and slew them. He then fled with his family to the mountains, whither many of the people followed him. The mountains and deserts of Judea were filled with fugitives from the persecution of Antiochus. A thousand of them being assembled in a cave near Jerusalem, military forces were sent out to reduce them to obedience. They were offered forgiveness for the past, if they would submit in future; but they all declared they had rather die than desert the faith of their fathers. Antiochus, being aware of their religious scruples, ordered them to be attacked on the Sabbath; in consequence of which they were all cut off

, men, women, and children. When Mattathias heard the sad tidings, he became alarmed lest all the faithful followers of Moses should be destroyed by the same stratagem. He and his adherents held a consultation, and came to the conclusion that laws were not strictly binding in cases of such extreme necessity. They unanimously resolved to defend their lives, if they were attacked on the Sabbath; and this rule was afterward adopted by all the Jews. Antiochus, meeting such obstinate resistance to his decree, went to Judea in person, and tried to enforce obedience by terrible severity. "Eleazar, one of the principal scribes, an aged man, and of a wellfavoured countenance, was constrained to open his mouth and eat swine's flesh. But he, choosing rather to die gloriously, than to live stained with such an abomination, spit it forth.” Some who were with him took him aside and begged him to substitute privately some other flesh, and pretend that he was obeying the royal command. But he said it did not become the honour of his gray head to dissemble, and thereby induce young persons to suppose that “Eleazar, being fourscore years old and ten, had now gone to a strange religion." He declared himself ready to die, rather than mislead others by such hypocrisy; adding, “Though for the present I should be delivered from the punishment of men, yet should I not escape the punishment of the Almighty, alive nor dead.” And so the brave and true old man was scourged to death, saying with his last breath: "I am well content to suffer these things, because I fear the Lord.” Afterward, a mother and her seven sons were tormented with whips to make them eat swine's flesh. The king, enraged by their refusal, mutilated the young men, one after another, before the eyes of their mother, and threw their limbs into the fire. They resolutely held forth their hands and tongues to be cut off, saying to their royal tormentor: “We suffer these things for having sinned against our God; therefore marvellous things are not done for us. Yet think not our

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