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SUBJECTS and OCCASIONS,
By the most Reverend
7. Fletcher, J. Ward, R. Baldwin, W. Johnston,
R. Ware, and M. Cooper,
The uncertainty of the day of judg
ment, consider'd and improv'd.
MARK XIII. 32, 33.
the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but " the Father. Take ye heed, watch and pray; for 1 ye know not when the time is. T HESE words are spoken by our SA-SERM.
viour of the day of judgment; for tho' CL
in this chapter, as likewise in the xxivth of St. Matthew, and the xxist of St. Luke, which are parallel to it, our Saviour discourseth very particularly and largely concerning the eminent appearance of his power and justice in the destruction of Jerusalem, which may perhaps sometimes in scripture be called his coming; yet it is plain likewise, that he discoursech there concerning his coming to judgment at the end of the world. For we find in the xxivth of St. Matthew, that after our SAVIour had foretold his disciples of the utter ruin of Jerusalem, they came afterwards to him, to enquire more particularly about it; ver. 3. “ And as he sat “ upon the mount of olives, the disciples came unto “ him privately, saying, tell us, when shall these 66 things be? and what shall be the sign of thy “ coming, and of the end of the world ?” Where there are two several questions, to which our SaviA 2
SERM.Our returns a distinct answer. The first, when 1. CLXXXIII, share
; those things he had been speaking of before should be; that is, the things which related to the destruction of Jerusalem, for of that only he had been speaking of before. The other question was a concerning 66 the sign of his coming, and of the end of the 65 world.”
The reason of their joining these two questions together, seems to be this, (as is very probable from many texts of the new testament) viz. that the apostles did think (and our Saviour permitted them for a long time to remain under this mistake) that the end of the world, and the general judgment, would be presently after the destruction of Jerufalem.
Now to this second question of theirs, concerning the end of the world, and our Saviour's coming to judgment, he gives an answer in the latter part of that chapter, ver. 29. '" But immediately ss after the tribulation of those days, the sun shall 66 be darkned, and the moon shall not give her is light; and then shall appear the sign of the Son 66 of man in' heaven.” Not that the general judgment of the world was immediately to follow the destruction of Jerusalem ; for there were many other things to intervene, as is manifest from St. Luke, chap. xxi. 24. “ That the Jews should be led cap5 tive into all nations, and Jerusalem should be 66 troden down of the gentiles, until the times of the * gentiles were fulfilled.” And tho' these things be expreft in a few words, yet they comprehend a long tract of time; for the captivity of the Jews hath continued for above 1600 years, and iš not yet at an end. And then after the accomplish