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he raised the widow's son to life. The man that had been 38 years under his affliction, was cured in the city of Jeru. salem, at a festival where all the Jews were collected. The demoniac was dispossessed in the synagogue, and Lazaru3 was raised from the dead when many of the Jews were present.
§ 15. I might further observe, that Jesus Christ not only possessed in himself the power of working miracles, but he also communicated it to others. When he sent forth the twelve apostles," he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.” After his resurrection also, when he renewed the commission of preaching the Gospel to his disciples, he said to them, “These signs shall follow them that believe; in my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick and they shall recover.” This promise of our Lord was abundantly fulfilled; both during his continuance on earth, and after his ascension into heaven, his disciples wrought these and many other mighty works, by which they fully attested the doctrine which he had appointed them to publish.
Now, my dear brother Benjamin, notwithstanding this very brief and imperfect account of the miracles of Christ, may I not expect your approbation of our Lord's declaration concerning our brethren in his day: "If I had not done among them the works which none other man ding they had not had sin; but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father." John, 15:24. May your sentiment be like that of some of our fathers, who said, “ When Christ cometh, will he do more miracles than these which this man hath done ?'' and like them, also, may you believe in him as the Christ, the Son of God. Yea, “let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God hath made that same Jesus, whom they have crucified, both Lord and Christ.” Acts, 2:36.
JESUS THE PROPHET.
Beloved Brother Benjamin,
In describing the engagement of Messiah, we mentioned that he was to reveal the will of God to men; or, in other words, that he was to sustain the office of a Prophet. I will therefore now endeavor to show more particularly that the Messiah was to be a Prophet; that he was to be like unto Moses; that Jesus Christ is that Prophet; and will describe the way in which he reveals the will of God, as another evidence that he is the promised Messiah. The office of a prophet is, to teach the people the will of God; to prove his mission by miracles, and illustrate his doctrines and precepts by his holy life and exemplary conduct. That Jesus Christ thus exemplified his holy and heavenly doctrines, that he confirmed his mission by miracles, we have already proved in preceding letters. I shall now proceed to illustrate the subject in the method already proposed, viz.
§ 1. I. Messiah was to be a Prophet. This is evident from prophecies in the Old Testament. The first and most remarkable is that in Deut. 18: 15–19. "The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him shall ye hearken; according to all that thou desiredst of the Lord thy God in Horeb, in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear again the voice of the Lord my God, neither let me see this great fire any more, that I die not. And the Lord said unto me, They have well spoken that which they have spoken. I will raise them up a prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth: and he shall speak unto them all that I shall
command him. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words, which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him.” With respect to this office, he was promised “to preach good tidings to the meek,” to be "a light to enlighten the Gentiles," "' a witness to the people," and "to have the tongue of the learned."
9 2. We argue, from the general expectation which prevailed at the time of our Lord, that the Savior should appear in the character of a glorious Prophet. When John the Baptist appeared, our people sent priests and Levites to him, asking, "Art thou that prophet ?" John, 1:21; and when Jesus performed his miracles, they said once and again, " This is of a truth that Prophet that should come into the world.” John, 6:14. 7:40. Yea, even the Samaritans, who had only the Pentateuch, expected that the Mesşiah would make a complete and perfect revelation of the will of God. For when Jesus told the woman of Samaria that the time is come when the mode of worship was to be changed, she replied, "I know that Messiah cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come he will tell us all things." John, 4:25.
3. Some of our modern Rabbins, as well as the more ancient, acknowledge that Messiah is to be a Prophet, to make new revelations and give new laws. It is laid down as a principle in Neve Shalom, " that the King Messiah shall be exalted above Abraham, be high above Moses, and raised above the ministering angels." And it is for the excellency of the revelation made by him, that he is so ex. alted above Moses. Hence Maimonides himself acknowledges, Tract. de Regibus, "that, at the coming of the Mes. siah hidden and deep things shall be revealed, or laid open to all.” And you know, my brother, the technical expression used by our Rabbins; when disputing on any subject, and cannot agree, they drop it, by saying Taika, i. e. let it rest till Messiah comes, and he will solve all questions and disputes. And no doubt it was to this common saying the woman of Samaria alluded in the passage just quoted : "he will tell us all things.” In Zohar in Gen. fol. 74, 1, it is said, “In the days of the Messiah, even the little children in the world shall find out the hidden things of wisdom, and know in it the ends and computations of times;) and at that time he shall be made manifest unto all.” Again, Lev. 10: 1, Judah saith, “ The holy blessed God will reveal the deep mysteries of the law in the times of the King Messiah, for the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the Lord, &c.; and it is wiitten, “ They shall not teach every man his brother." Maimonides saith, “ The whole world chall be filled with the words of the law, and with the words of the commandments.” Hilchoth Melachim, c. 11, § 4, and 12, 5.
§ 4. II. We will now show that the Messiah was to be a prophet like unto Moses, and that Jesus Christ is that Prophet. It is very evident that the prediction in Duet. 18 had no reference to Joshua, as some would apply it; for although he was appointed a leader and commander of the people of Israel, to whom they hearkened, yet he was no prophet, nor was he ever accounted as such by. our nation; and instead of his being like unto Moses, there is a striking difference in the most prominent features of their characters. Moses is called the lawgiver ; Joshua gave no law, but followed and executed the law given by Moses. Moses was made ruler of Israel by the Lord God of Israel himself; Joshua was made ruler by Moses, according to the command of God. Moses received the law from the immediate hand of God himself; Joshua received that same law from the hand of Moses, a fellow mortal. Moses was a legislator, a lawgiver; and neither Joshua, nor any other prophet whom Israel yet acknowledges, ever pretended to such a character. Joshui never ascended the mount into the cloud of glory, nor did God converse with him face to face, as a man does to his friend. Besides, the Scripture plainly declares that Joshua was not the prophet like unto Moses; for Deut. 18: 9 shows that the prophet ailuded to was to arise in the latter days, after Israel possessed the land; and lest there should be any misapprehension, it is written in Deut. 34: 10-12, " And there arose not a prophet since in Israel like unto Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face; in all the signs and the wonders which the Lord sent him to do in the land of Egypt, to Pharaoh, and to all his servants, and to all his land; and in all the great terror which Moses showed in the sight of Israel.
$ 5. Nor is it applicable to Jeremiah, as others would apply it. There was nothing peculiar in him, to style him a prophet like unto Moses. Nor could it mean a succession of prophets; for one single prophet is promised, and not many; nor was there ever a regular succession of prophets; and our nation have been without any prophet for two thousand years.
Nor hath there ever been a prophet like unto Moses, until the appearance of Jesus Christ. Hence our people have, to the present day, always magnified Moses above all the prophets, calling him, "the father and prince of the prophets, and that all the prophets prophesied from the fountain of his prophecy." Maim. Yesod Hattorah, c. 7. Sec. 6. Seder Tephil
. f. 212. Having made it manifest, that the Messiah was to be a prophet; and that Moses in particular, prophesied that the Messiah was to be a prophet like unto himself; and that no prophet, until Jesus came, was like unto Moses; I shall now show, and I hope to the perfect satisfaction of my dear Benjamin, that Jesus of Nazareth is that promised prophet. This is evident,
96. 1. From the repeated application of the prediction to Jesus Christ, in the New Testament. When the apostles Peter and John, in the name of Jesus of Nazareth, had cured a man who had been lame from his mother's womb, a great multitude had collected at the temple at Jerusalem, and were filled with wonder and astonishment; Peter, with holy boldness, addressed the people, and showed, from the writings of the prophets, that those things were