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It is with emotions of actual relief and gladness that we leave to other works the details of that awful war, during the continuance of which 1,356,460 of our hapless countrymen perished, and 101,700 graced as prisoners the triumph of the Roman

emperor and his son; and this calculation relates only to the period of the destruction of Jerusalem : the thousands and thousands of men, women, and children, who fell victims to after massacres, are not included.

As a History of the Women of Israel, we need not linger on details which our own historian, Josephus, and yet more powerfully, ir. all the eloquence of modern writing, Milman has brought so vividly before us, save to give one shuddering glance on what must have been the anguish, the tortures, of the female children of the Lord at that awful period. Every social tiemother, daughter, sister, wife-must every hour have been subject to the agony of such bereavement as we can but faintly image now. We see, by both Isaiah and Ezekiel, that the sins of the women had added to the weight of national iniquity; but still all were not sinful, all were not rebellious. Countless thousands of those that fell were true to their God and His law. The service of the Temple, the daily offerings, were continued in the very midst of the most horrible internal dissensions and outward siege ; and not only men armed for battle, but the aged and the feeble, the loveliest and the most unprotected fernale, the stripling youth and the tender child, sought


the temple-courts to worship, and often by the very altar found their deaths. What, in this dark cpoch, would have supported the Hebrew female, and given her strength to witness misery, suffer torture, and then die ? what but an assurance of that immortality, wherein the distinction between the righteous and the wicked should be discerned, and all of this world's agony be swallowed up in an eternity of bliss ?

In shrinking from the pages of horror which relate the Jewisi war, we sometimes forget to bring forward in its deserved light the noble and exalted patriotism from which the awful struggle sprang. In our last period, we have endeavored to give some idea of the enslaving and savage nature of the Roman government over the provinces of Judea. A reference to the historians of the period will make it clearer still. From Herod, falsely called the Great, originated, as we have seen, the Ronan subjection of Judea, and the denationalizing of the Jewish people. But all of nationality, all of patriotism, had not merged into the slavish subjection which the persecuting cruelty of the Roman governors seemed determined to enforce. In the very face of crushing tyranny and inward depression, the Hebrew people rose as one man to throw off the yoke of Rome -Rome, the mistress of the world, Empress of a thousand cities, of a hundred provinces, each one larger and more mighty than the unprotected land whose daring sons held forth the banner of rebellion, and dared to strike for freedom ! not Rome who commenced the struggle. She would have laughed to scorn the very idea that Judea could lead armies to subject her, when her officers and troops already held the land. Noit was the Jews themselves. And who after this shall accuse us of tacit submission, of wanting in courage, patriotism, spirit, all that makes the warrior ? Had we succeeded, we too should have been held up as examples of man in his noblest nature, even as the Swiss under Tell, the Scotch under Wallace and Bruce, and the Americans of a later day ; for, when compared with the Hebrews' struggles for liberty and soil, how faint and feeble were the efforts of these modern lands! But the exalted origin of the Jewish war is lost in its awful close. We could not succeed ; for it was the Lord who fought against us through the Roman swords, in just chastisement for national iniquity, and in fulfilment of His prophecy by Moses. Still let not our sors forget that their ancestors alone dared brave the

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mighty force of imperial Rome-their ancestors alone so fought for freedom that mightier armies than were needed for the reduction of any other province were summoned against them. Aye, and that, had not the wrath of the Eternal worked against them, in the division of themselves, and in the awful fulfilment of the threatenings which they had disregarded, Judea would have been unconquered still.

One important fact it is necessary to notice here. Our young sisters, no doubt, have often read and heard (for it is impossible to peruse Gentile historians of the time without such impressions), that the awful occurrences of the war, the destruction of our glorious Temple, and banishment from our Holy Land, all were occasioned, not by our departure from the law of God, and manifold national transgressions, but from our obstinate rejection of Jesus, when he came for our salvation. Now, with out an intimate knowledge of our history during the continuance of the Second Temple, this might be a startling argument. We see that we are dispersed; we read of all the miseries and massacres which have befallen us; of the omens and prodigies that preceded the destruction of the Temple. We are told by eager Gentile acquaintance, or read in their books, that so Jesus prophesied, and that he wept when he looked on Jerusalem, foreseeing all the calamities about to ensue because the people rejected him; and unless we know another cause for all these things, how are we to answer ?

And yet how easy is the true reply! A very cursory glance over our history, from the return from the Babylonish Captivity, even if we go no further than the death of Herod, will bring glaringly before us the awful sins for which we are thus punished. Even in the brief sketch which we have given at the commencement of our Sixth Period, we surely must trace the national departure from the pure law of Moses, the assimilation with other nations, the entire forgetfulness that we were to be a

nation of priests, holy unto the Lord”—the awful deeds of parricide and massacre devastating the houses of those very princes chosen as the Lord's anointed priests : and even had we but the reign of Herod, we read a sufficiency of sin to huri down on us the threatened chastisement of the Eternal. The period between the first and second Captivity was granted us as a period of trial, whether or not we would return with our whole hearts unto the Lord. The twenty-eighth chapter of Deu

teronomy, with its sublime and startling prophecy, was ours then even as it is now. We had already felt the wrath of the Lord : and the power to return to Him and to His law, or to reject them, Hs mercy had planted in our hearts. If man had no power of himself to keep the law of God, as the Gentiles teach, then, indeed, would the law have been instituted in mockery, not in love, to destroy not to save; and there could have been no need for the sublime prophecy of Moses. This is not the work to dilate on the twenty-eighth chapter of Deuteronomy, as inclination might prompt. We can only beseech our readers to turn to it themselves—to observe the blessings promised for obedience the curses threatened on the disobedient—to compare the history of Israel during the continuance of the Temple, with the first fourteen verses of the chapter, and reflect if such blessings could be ours; and then from the fifteenth to the end of the chapter : and do we need more to instruct us in the nature of our sins—and the wherefore they were punished ?

“But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe to do all His commandments and His statutes, which I command thee this day, that all these curses shall come upon thee and overtake thee.” This single verse is all-sufficient to overturn every Gentile argument. The prophecy which it precedes is so exact a description of all that took place in Jerusalem, before its siege by the Romans, during the siege, and afterwards, in the various lands where we were scattered, that it would seem as if it must have been written by an eye-witness, or after those events took place—not by an historian, living hundreds and thousands of years before. This single chapter is sufficient to prove the truth of the Bible, Judaism, and God. The description of the siege may in a slight degree be applicable either to the first or second destruction of the Temple; but, as a whole, it refers only and solely to the destruction of Jerusalem by Titus, and the final dispersion of the Jews.

Let not, then, the impressions derived from Gentile historians, so confine the youthful Hebrew mind, as to conceal for a single instant the real reason for our past miseries and present dispersion. We were, we are, chastised, not for rejecting Jesus, but for long, long years of disobedience to our law. We are chastised for those national and individual crimes and sins, recorded in our history during the continuance of our Second Templenot for refusing belief in Jesus. If omens and prodigies did precede the destruction of the Temple, might not Nature have been equally moved with horror for the fate threatening the Jewish people for their manifold sins, as for a single one ? Jesus wept when he thought on the calamities of Jerusalem; but this only proves, that, like every other Jew, he was well acquainted with the prophecy of Moses, and, in the supremacy of national sin, beheld its near fulfilment--wholly and entirely distinct from their treatment of himself.

Surely, then, the Gentile arguments, as to the cause of our dispersion, inust fall harmless to the ground, a knowledge of our own history being all that is required to supply us with defence. *

The war itself lasted but five years ; but the miseries and massacres of the Jews commenced almost from the death of Herod, and continued, with little cessation, long after Jerusalem was destroyed. In every Roman province where they took refuge, they were almost universally massacred, either from some fancied insult, or revolt among themselves, or from the determination of the Romans to sweep them from the earth. The Greeks joined in this universal persecution—their only point of cordial union with the Romans seeming, in fact, to be their detestation of and cruelty towards the exiles of the Lord. The reign of Adrian threatened them with almost as complete an extermination as their expulsion from their land. Yet still they lived on, endowed, it seemed, with an undying vitality, which neither cruelty, nor suffering, nor death in its most awful shape, could extinguish. Nor was it the race only, which was preserved, but

* Our opponents will, no doubt, urge, that it was to redeem us from those very sins, dilated on above, that Jesus came ; and had we accepted him, our punishment, in the destruction of our beautiful city, and banishment from our Holy Land, would have been averted. This sounds well: but as no such condition whatever was annexed, as a saving clause, to the prophetic threatenings of Moses, in chapter twenty-eight of Deuteronomy: we can neither accept nor allow it. Had the Eternal ordained and required this acceptance of Jesus, He would have inspired Moses to insert, at the end of verse fifteen, chapter twenty-eight, “ But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken, &c.nor accept the salvation that I offer through the atonement of the Saviour whom I will send.” But as there are no such conditions, the cause of all that has befallen us originates in the awful disobedience to the “ voice of the Lord our God” and disobedience to the law which He gave through Moses.

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