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A. D. the province of Syria, which included Judea and Samaria, and Coponius made procurator of Judea. Great troubles arise at this time, in consequence of the Jews being compelled to pay taxes to the Roman government.-Christ comes to the temple, being twelve years old, really A. D. 12, but according to the common era,

8 Marcus Ambivius procurator of Judea,

10 Tiberius admitted copartner with Augustus in the sovereignty of the Roman empire. From this year, the fifteenth year of Tiberius, mentioned Luke iii. 1, is to be dated,

12 Annius Rufus procurator of Judea,

13 Succeeded by Valerius Gratus,

15 Pontius Pilate procurator and governor of Judea,


26 The Lord Jesus Christ crucified,

33 Stephen stoned, probably in the year,

35 Pilate banished to Gaul, Marcellus procurator of Judea,

37 Petronius commanded to put the statue of the Emperor Caligula.

in the temple at Jerusalem, which, by God's providence, was prevented being done,

41 Herod Agrippa, grandson of Herod the Great and Mariamne,

(Acts xii,) enters upon the government of Judea, given him by Claudius Cesar,

42 Herod Agrippa beheads the Apostle James, and is eaten up of

44 Cuspius Fadus procurator of Judea,

45 Under his procuratorship, the famine mentioned Acts xi. 28, took

place, and a celebrated false Messiah rose at this time, who was followed by a great multitude of people. Tiberius Alexander procurator of Judea,

46 Ventidius Cumanus procurator of Judea,

47 Under him the disputes in Palestine became more violent. Felix procurator of Judea, before whom Paul pled his cause and preached Christ, (Acts xxiv. 10. 24,)

53 Judea, under him, was full of robbers, magicians, false prophets,

and false Messiahs-disturbances begin to break out at Cesa.

rea and other places. Porcius Festus, from whom Paul appealed to Nero's judgment

seat, (Acts xxv. 12,) procurator of Judea, between 57 and 60 False Messiahs and robbers continue to keep the country in com.

motion. Albinus procurator of Judca,

about 63 War and disturbances in Judea—the apartments of the temple completed,

64 Gessius Florus procurator of Judea,

65 General revolt of the Jews, and Jerusalem attacked by Cestius Gallus, prefect of Syria,

66 Vespasian's campaign in Galilee,

67 Vespasian made emperor,

69 Siege and destruction of Jerusalem,

70, 71







In the early ages of the history of Israel, after the Lord had given them his statutes and his ordinances in the wilderness, and when they had just received the last directions of their inspired leader and lawgiver previous to their entering on possession of the promised land; at that precise period, in a word, when at length they had been fully equipped for carrying into effect those great and gracious designs with a view to which, as you have already heard, they had been separated and set apart from all the other nations of the earth,“ Moses and the priests, the Levites, spake unto all Israel, saying, (Deut. xxvii

. and xxviii

. chapters,) “ Take heed and hearken, O Israel, this day thou art become the people of the Lord thy God. And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth.” This gracious and encouraging promise of Divine protection and favour, the fulfilment of which was thus distinctly declared to be contingent on their fidelity to their covenant-God, the succeeding verses of the twentyeighth chapter of Deuteronomy amplify into a whole train of blessings—blessings on their families on their substance on their religious privileges-on every thing that pertains to the welfare, the happiness, the prosperity and stability of a nation. But at the same time that this bright prospect of honour and favour was held up to their view, as inseparably associated with their continuing in the statutes and ordinances of the Lord, the dark reverse of that smiling picture was with equal distinctness displayed. “ For if,” said their inspired leader, “thou wilt not observe to do all the words of this law, that are written in this book, that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name—the Lord thy God, it shall come to pass that, as the Lord rejoiced over you to do you good and to multiply you, so the Lord will rejoice over you to destroy you and to bring you to nought.” I need not remind you how mournfully, as the previous lecturer showed, this latter condition came at length to be realized. For many generations preceding the destruction of Jerusalem, spiritual religion and vital godliness had fallen among them into an almost universal decline. The vision of all the truth revealed unto their fathers, had become unto them as the words of a book that was sealed. So that when the Messiah appeared, of whom Moses in the law and all the Prophets did write, instead of hailing him as the long-promised King of the Jews, and cal ing on the rulers of the earth to cast their crowns at his feet, and to join in one universal hosanna to the Son of David, they set, on the contrary, to the whole world, the most audacious example of rebellion against him-never ceasing from that fierce and relentless hostility with which they pursued him, till, covered with the infamy of a malefactor, they had nailed him to the cross. And even after God had raised up his Son Jesus, and in his long-suffering had sent him once more, in the person of his apostles, to bless them; instead of confessing their sins, the rage with which they had already smitten the Shepherd, was now concentrated in all its fury on the sheep of his flock. They had now, therefore, reached that point in the career of national crime, which so mạnifestly consummated their apostasy from God, that, slow as He is to anger, He could challenge the whole intelligent universe to say whether judgment ought any longer to be delayed. The time had now come for the fulfilment of these striking words the Lord had spoken eight hundred years before, by the prophet Isaiah: “ What could have been done more to my vineyard which I have not done in it? Wherefore, when I looked that it should bring forth grapes, brought it forth wild grapes. But now, go to, I will tell you what I will do to my vineyard- I will take away the hedge thereof, and it shall be eaten up;'and break down the wall thereof, and it shall be trodden down; and I will lay it waste; it shall not be pruned nor digged; but there shall come up briers and thorns. I will also command the clouds that they rain no rain

upon it."

In reading the history of the memorable events, in which that awful prediction was fulfilled, there is no fact which they present to the mind more forcibly than this, that God's judgments never overtake a nation, till its own manifold iniquities have made it ripe for ruin. Long before the Roman armies had approached Jerusalem to overwhelm it with the vengeance which the preceding lecturer described, that devoted city had become a prey to the most frightful intestine war. Throughout the whole land of Judea the bonds of civil society had been dissolved; and, at the very moment when they were madly rushing into a frantic insurrection against the mightiest military power that ever existed on the earth, their country was rent and torn by the bloodiest and most savage contests among themselves. One of the domestic factions, known by the name of the zealots or robbers, took forcible possession of Jerusalem, some time previous to the siege, degraded the high priest from his office, expelled the whole of the sacred order from the temple, and made an impious mockery of all religious services, by placing them in the charge of the vilest and most worthless of men. In the fierce and daily struggles to which these sacrilegious outrages gave rise, not only the streets of the city, but the very courts of the temple—that place where God did once in very deed dwell with men on the earth-were continually flowing with torrents of blood. So obstinately did these mutual contests rage, that for a long time the Romans forbore approaching the city, knowing that such internal strife must be rapidly weakening their strength and exhausting their resources, and thereby making the more effectual preparation for their final overthrow. In the course of these deadly intestine commotions, the immense magazines of provisions which had been stored up in the city, were with insensate fury destroyed. And to aggravate the pressure of that famine which had already begun, immediately before the Roman armies encompassed the city, great multitudes of the Jews had been flocking into it to keep the annual feast, then on the eve of being celebrated, of unleavened bread. When this mighty concourse of human beings was at length hemmed in within the city's walls, now beleaguered on every side by the thronging ranks of a vigilant and skilful foe, the horrors of the scene became too awful to be described. Night and day, within and around, nothing was seen or heard but the most relentless and exterminating war. If for a moment a sense of common danger put an end to their civil broils, and carried them forth to their ramparts, to repel with the wild and resistless energy of despair the invaders' assault, no sooner had the enemy been swept from the halfmounted breach, and a temporary respite from foreign force obtained, than their swords were again turned into each other's breasts. Famishing with hunger and burning with thirst from the heat of battie, these fierce necessities of nature quelled every human feeling, and filled them with the ferocity of demons. Children tore the scanty morsel of food from the trembling hands of aged parents; and, to fill the cup of horror, mothers even devoured their infant children. “Nor,” says the Jewish historian, “were there any lamentations made under these calamities, nor were heard any mournful complaints,

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