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the Jews of a future Prophet who should return answer, shews that, in their opinion, the prediction which Moses delivered, of a Prophet like unto himself, was still unfulfilled.

The same expectation is again discovered in the remarkable reservation, which they made, in conferring the government and priesthood upon Simon, the brother of Judas, and his posterity.

The act of registry, written in tables of brass, and set upon pillars in mount Sion, declared that “the people of the Jews were well pleased that Simon should be their governor and high priest for ever," that the dignity should be no longer personal, but hereditary, “until there should arise a faithful Prophet.”

This passage, as well as the preceding, has always been considered to indicate the continued expectation which the Jews entertained,

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11 Μacc. κίν. 41.- είναι Σίμωνα ηγούμενος και αρχιερέα είς τον αιώνα έως του αναστήναι προφήτην πιστόν. This expression corresponds with the Septuagint version of Deut. xviii. 15, 18. Προφήτην εκ των αδελφών σου, ως έμε, αναστήσει σοι Κύριος ο Θεός σου.--Προφήτην αναστήσω αυτοίς. Perhaps the term εις τον αιώνα has also a reference to the expected Age of the Messiah, of which the author of the book of Tobit speaks in similar words: έως πληρωθώσι καιροί του αιώνος. Tobit xiv. 5. The same mode of expression is often used in Scripture; Psalm lxxii. 5, 17. lxxxix. 36, 37. Dan. ix. 27. Matt. xxiv. 3. Mark xiii. 4. Luke xxi. 7. See Kidder's Demonstr. of the Messias, Part III. Chap. ix. p. 378.

8 See Bp. Chandler's Defence, Chap. i. Sect. 1, 2.

that some one great Prophet should appear. And the specific allusion to the very terms of Moses' prophecy, and to their opinion that the prophet so raised up should be a Faithful Prophet, identifies the object of their expectation with him whom Moses predicted.

This expectation, first excited among the Israelites before the death of Moses, was thus preserved among all their national calamities. It survived after the voice of prophecy had ceased: and served to animate their hopes in all the struggles which they maintained against their numerous and powerful enemies.

The same expectation remained at the time when Christ Jesus appeared upon the earth. The council of the Jews, who sent to demand of John the Baptist who he was, well read in the prophecies of Malachi, first asked if he were Elias ? And when he said, I am not, they again asked, probably with allusion to the prophecy of Moses, Art thou that Prophet ?h They who were looking for the consolation of Israel, and imagined they had discovered him, could devise no words more apposite to describe their conviction than those of Philip, “We have found him, of whom Moses in the law and the prophets did write.” The people, trained up in the traditional knowledge of


John i. 21.

i John i. 45.

the mighty miracles which Moses had wrought, and taught to expect a prophet like unto him in his sacerdotal and regal character, “when they had seen a miracle which Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that Prophet that should come into the world :" and they were eager to take him by force and make him a king."

The very conduct of the rulers of the Jews to Peter, when he applied this prophecy of Moses to Christ, may, in this part of the argument, be brought to prove, at least, the interpretation which the Jews generally adopted. Anxious as they were to destroy the rising church of Christ, and perceiving Peter and John to be unlearned and ignorant men, they would at once have declared them to be but setters forth of strange opinions, when they heard them establishing their doctrines upon this prophecy, had they then generally received the interpretation, to which the Jews of the present day have recourse, that the words of Moses were fulfilled in the prophets of the Old Testament.

Even impostors took advantage of this expeetation, to deceive many, by pretending to imitate the miraculous acts of Moses. And the open avowal of some of the Jews them

John vi. 14, 15. | Joseph. Antiq. xx. 8. 1. De Bell. Jud. ii. 13. 5. Acts xxi. 38.

" m

selves refers this prediction to the Messiah : “ It cannot be, but that a prophet shall at last rise like to Moses, or greater than he: for the king Messiah shall be as great or greater : therefore these words, there arose not a prophet since in Israel, like unto Moses,' are not to be expounded as if there should never bé such a prophet, but that in all the time of the following prophets, till the cessation of prophecy, none should arise like unto Moses. But after that, there shall arise one like him, or greater than he.”

A prophet, then, like unto Moses, who should at once fulfil the prediction and the type, having been so long promised, and so continually expected, after the gift of prophecy had ceased, and up to the very time when Christ appeared, it is now to be shewn that He was the person to whom the prophetic words and actions of Moses had reference, and that in Him they were completely fulfilled.

In the first place, then, Christ himself supported his claim to the belief of the Jews, by a reference to the prophecy of Moses. “Had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me, for he wrote of me.' Our Lord was, in this discourse, asserting his title to the character of the Messiah. He had appealed to the testimony of John; to the greater witness of the works which he did: he had instructed them to search the Scriptures, which testified of him: and he concluded his argument, with alleging the predictions which Moses had delivered. It is surely, therefore, in the highest degree probable, that Christ, preferring this claim to be the Messiah pointed out generally in the prophecies of the Old Testament, and in those which Moses relates in the Penta. teuch, alluded to this, the most pointed prophecy, which Moses delivered in his own person and recorded in his writings; and which all the Jews considered to bear reference to their expected great Deliverer.

m The author of Sepher Ikarim, iii. 20. quoted by Patrick on Deut. xxxiv, 10.

n John v. 46.

After the resurrection of Christ, and the miraculous effusion of the Holy Ghost upon the assembled disciples, the mind of St. Peter was enlightened with a fuller knowledge of the prophecies and prefigurations of the Old Testament. And in his address to the Jews in which he persuades them that, in the death of Christ, God had fulfilled those things which he had shewed by the mouth of all his prophets, he cites verbally the prediction of Moses, as the most explicit among the prophecies to which he alludes.

• Acts iii. 18, 22, 23.

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