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Forty years after, God appears to him in a burning bush.
583 of the Lord in a flame a bush, while he was feeding the flock of Jethro sect. of fire in a bush.
bis father in law in the wilderness of mount Sinui,
not far from the Red Sea. (Exod. iii. 1, 2.) 31 When Moses And Moses, seeing it,] admired the vision, for 31 saw it, he wondered at the bush burned with fre, and yet was not the sight: and as he drew near to behold it, consumed ; and as he drew near to behold and the voice of the Lord survey [it] more particularly, the voice of the came unto him, Lord came unto him out of the bush, [Saying,] 32
32 Saying, I am the “ I am the God of thy fathers, the God of
not even now ashamed to own that title.”
did not dare to behold it, as he intended, with a 33 Then said the curious regard, And the Lord said unto him, 33 Lord to him, Put off “ Loose thy shoes from thy feet i; for the place fect ; for the place in which thou standest is now holy ground, where thou standest is while I thus visibly appear upon it ; and it holy ground.
becomes thee (by that usual token of respect
before princes) to express thy reverence for 34 I have seen, I my royal presence. I have surely seen the 34 have seen the afliction evil and oppressive treatment of my people which in Egypt, and I have are in Egypt, and I have heard their groaning; heard their groaning, and moved with pity and compassion at their and am come down to deliver
sufferings, I am come down to deliver them by now come, I will send thine hand : And now therefore come, and lay thee into Egypt. aside immediately thy cares of a shepherd for
others of much greater inportance, and I will
5-10.) 35 This Moses whom And thus you see, what in present circum- 35 they refused, saying, stances it will be Who
proper you to reflect upon, that this Moscs, whom they renounced ", saying
i Loose thy shoes from thy feet.] It was done in a desart, as a token of the infinile'y formerly in the eastern nations, and is now greater reverence due to him. (Compare in the southern, esteemed a ceremony of re. Josh. v. 15, and Eccles. v. 1.) On the spect, to put off the shoes when approaching same principle, it seems, the priests mia superior, lest any of the dirt or dust nistered thus in the tabernacle and temple, cleaving to the shoes should be brought near no direction being given for shnes or sandals him, and tbat the person approaching bare. as a part of their dress, though all the rest foot might tread more cautiously. This, of it was so particularly prescribed. which perhaps was introduced at first in k This Moses, whom they renounced.] As court apartments where rich carpets might the terms of high respect, in which Stephen be nised, the King of kings requires to be
to him in the bush,
584 Reflections on the account that Stephen gives of Moses.
a judge? even this very person did God, by the and a judge? the same Acts hand of the angel who appeared to him in the bush, ruler and a deliverer VII. 36. send (to be] a ruler and a redeemer. And though by the hands of the
he hesitated for a while, he afterwards complied; angel which appeared
Ver. He is indeed faithful that hath promised; he remembereth his
generations. (Psal. cv. 8.) He multiplied his people in Egypt,
had determined so to multiply the holy seed, vain were all the at18, 19 tempts of the ungrateful Egyptians to destroy the kindred of him
by whom, as they had formerly confessed, their lives had been
exposed, was the care of divine Providence, the compassion which
through the whole of this discourse speaks be a ruler and redeemer, intimated bow
Reflections on the account that Stephen gives of Moses. 585 different means; the learning, the magnificence, and politeness sect. of the court of Egypt were to do their part, that he might be able to appear with honour in that court as an ambassador,
But forty years of retirement in the desart of Midian, spent in 29
At length light breaks in upon them in the midst of their dark- 30, 31
How does God manifest the heart of a parent towards these bis 34 oppressed children! I have seen, I have seen the affliction of Israel: Thus, () Lord, dost thou see all our afflictions ! Let thy church, and each of thy people, trust thee to come down for their deliverance in thine own time and way ; let us with pleasure behold this Moses whom they rejected, and from whom a worthless offender could not bear a reproof, made a leader and a redeemer : So is 35, 36 our blessed Jesus, though once rejected and despised, eralted to be a Prince and a Saviour. It is not in vain that we have trusted, it is he that should redeem Israel. (Luke xxiv. 21.) He has conquered the tyrant of hell, he has broken our chains, he has brought us forth into a wilderness, but a wilderness in which God nourishes
586 Moses had pointed out another prophet, even Christ. sect. and guides us; and he shall ere long have what Moses had not,
the honour and delight of leading all his people into the land of promise, and dividing to them a joyful and everlasting inheritance there.
Stephen proceeds in his discourse, till his audience are so enraged
that they rush upon him and stone him. Acts VII. 37, to the end. VIII. 1.
Acts VII. 37.
Acts VII. 37. STT STEPIEN went on, in bis discourse before This is that Moses
the Sanhedrim, to mention sereral other cir- the children of Israel, Acts cumstances concerning Moses, which he judged A prophet shall the VII. 37. important to his present purpose; and having
Lord your God raise
up unto you of your taken norice of the commission he received from brethren, like unto me: God to be a ruler and deliverer, and of the won him shall ye bear. ders that he wrought in Egypt, in the Red Sea, and in the wilderness, he added, This is ihat Moses who expressly said to the children of Israel, (Deut. xviii. 15.) “ A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you from amongst your brethren like unto me, him shall
hear a :" Thereby pointing out, that Jesus of Nazareth, who is to be regarded as the great prophet and lawgiver of Israel, by whom God has sent you, as he did by Moses, a new system of precepts,
and new ample discoveries of his will. 38 This Moses is he who was the chief in the as 38 This is he that
sembly convened in the wilderness b, who had the was in the church in honour of conversing with the angel that spake the angel which spake to him there on mount Sinai, and of transacting to him in the mvont
a A prophet shall the Lord your God, &c.] plainly proves the angel to be a different As to the justice with which this prophecy person. But I think the doctrine itself, is applied to Christ, in its original and " that Christ was the God of Israel, or the diteral sense, see Dr. Bullock's Serm. on angel who appeared to Moses," a great Deut. xviii. 18. and Mr. Jeffery's True and certain truth, capable of being evinced Grounds, p. 128–155. whom I mentioned from many passages of the Old and New before in note i on Acts iii. 92, p. 534, to Testament, and from this paragraph in parwhich add Bishop Sherlock un Prophecy, ticular, though not from inis clause ; and I p. 187, & seq.
hope in due time to shew, that the argub This is he, who was in the assembly in ments which Mr. Pierce bas urged against the wilderness.] When this clause is quoted it iron Heb. xiii. 2. and ii. 2-4, are quite as it has been by some very great men, to inconclusive, follow Beza, Heinsius, prove that Christ was the person, who and the Prussian translators, in rendering brought Israel out of Egypt, gave them the EXXA9GiC, assembly, as our translatorsco, ACIS law, conducted them through the wilderness, xix, ult. because I am persuaded it refers, &c. the argument from thence is certainly not in the general to their being incorporated inconclusive ; for ou10 here evidently an into one church in the appropriate sense of swers to 0:13, ver. S6, and to wie that word, but to their being assembled rund Mwuons, ver. 37: and the following clause, the mountain on the solemn day when the which expresses his being with the angel, law was given, Exod. xix. 17, ģ seg.
After the law was given, Moses was soon rejected. 587 Sinai, and with our all things with our fathers, whom he then enter- SECT. fathers; who received ed into covenant with God : (Exod. xix. 3, 17; the lively oracles to give unto us,
xxiv. 7, 8 :) And it was he who received the
manner, and which instruct us in the way to
acted a part yet more stupid and ungrateful
derful appearances of God by him, and returned
Aaron, at the very foot of that mountain upon
few days before had seen their great leader as-
not what is become of him, and cannot have pa-
and brought a sacrifice to the idol, and rejoiced
ornament and defence to them. (Exod xxxii.
ceeding ages to the most abandoned, public,
their own hands.
c To whom our fathers would not be obe- that they might see it was no new thing, dient.) This is observed by Stephen once for Israel to rebel against God by rejecting and again, and he insists upon it largely, deliverers sent from him. 4 E