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spiritual blessings, is the influence of knowledge, peace, and holiness. To all this, the reading of the Bible is indispensable. Hence it was predicted concerning the “Prince of Peace.” “He shall come down like rain upon the mown grass, as showers that water the earth. In his days shall the righteous flourish, and abundance of peace so long as the moon endureth. He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, and from the river unto the ends of the earth. His name shall endure for ever. His name shall be continued as long as the sun, and men shall be blessed in him : all nations shall call him blessed.” (Psalm lxxii. 6—8, 17.) “And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths : for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks : nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more: but they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree, and none shall make them afraid : for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.” (Micah iv. 244.) “ They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountains : for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters of the sea.” (Isaiah xi. 9.) “And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising. I will make thy officers
peace, and thine exactors righteousness. Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise.” (Isaiah lx. 3, 17, 18.) “Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection; on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.” (Rev. xx. 6.)
These delightful declarations of the prophets of God are only a few of those predictions which they have recorded for our instruction. But they lead us to anticipate glorious days, when the rulers of the nations shall understand the true nature of Christianity, and, feeling its divine power, shall frame all their laws, and administer their government, not for selfish or party purposes, but for the public welfare, in the spirit of the gospel. Horrid wars have on many occasions been undertaken and carried on for years, by kings and princes calling themselves after the blessed name of Christ, and even “ Most Christian.” But such military sovereigns have contradicted their sacred, peaceful profession, by their unprofitable policy and their bloody deeds.
Divine prophecy, however, foreshows a blissful millennium, when the grace of the Holy Spirit will be largely poured forth upon the churches of the Redeemer. The whole population shall profess His holy gospel, and obey its divine institutions, while the character of the people, for the space of a thousand years, shall exhibit sanctity and zeal for Christ. The peculiarities of the millennial period are presented in the Scriptures as most remarkable. Divine knowledge, when“ all shall be taught of the Lord,” and holiness will universally prevail; men of every rank will be intelligent believers in the gospel ; civil rulers will be influenced by the fear of God; public crimes will cease, and liberty and security be enjoyed by all. The visible Church of Christ, formerly divided and sectarian, will be united as one harmonious body-believing the same doctrines, observing the same ordinances, the ministers "seeing eye to eye,” richly endowed with all spiritual gifts and graces, and experiencing the consolations of the Holy Spirit. Holiness thus producing temperance and prolonging health, will secure unexampled happiness; while God will give additional splendour to the heavens, with increased fertility to the earth. Peace reigning in every region, individuals, families, and nations, by believing on Jesus and obeying his gospel, will be exempted from the calamities produced by unsanctified passions, and the whole race of man be blessed under the government of the great Messiah.
Happily, in promoting that long-desired period, the heavenly principles of Christianity are exhibiting their mighty influence among rulers, through the increasing knowledge of the Holy Scriptures, so widely circulated by the Bible Society, not only in Europe, but in various languages, even among the Mohammedan and Pagan nations of Africa, Asia, and Polynesia. Philanthropy, taught by the doctrine and the example of Jesus Christ, is seen to influence the legislators in every country. Knowledge and education advance among the people, and many appearances, especially the long-continued general peace, and the increasing pacific disposition of the formerly hostile courts on the Continent, indicate the steady progress of the long-desired kingdom of our Lord and Saviour.
PROSPECTS FROM THE PREVALENCE OF THE
AMONG the numerous and various phenomena of the present age, scarcely anything attracts more attention, or appears more wonderful, than the prevailing influence of the English. There is as much significance as truth in the oft-repeated saying, “ The sun never sets on the British dominions.” Our colonies are planted in every part of the world. Our commerce is carried on with every seaport. Our manufactures are found in every province; and, in every place where British merchants trade, there the people study the language of Great Britain.
The native language of twenty-six millions in the United Kingdom, is the language also of the vast regions of Australia, of British America, of the West Indies, and the chief language of the extensive provinces of the Canadas, and of South Africa. English is studied throughout India, and by many in the provinces of China.
Into all these regions our language is carried by the Bible, as its sacred standard ; and thus we perceive one of the great and merciful designs of God,