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reckoned seventy-two angels that presided over them; and indeed, considering what follows, ver. 9. for the Lord's portion is his people, Jacob is the lot of his inheritance, it seems very probable that this translation of the Septuagint was the true sense of the original, viz. That whereas God distributed the Gentile world into so many nations as there were president-angels to be their guardians and governors, he reserved Israel to himself, as his own lot and portion, over which he intended to preside immediately in his own person; and therefore, as a learned writer of our own hath observed, it is not at all improbable, but that instead of Sprus 2, i. e. the sons of Israel, as it is now in our Hebrew copies, the ancient reading whence the Septuagint translated might be 582, i. e. the sons of God, and that el might either be mistaken by the transcribers for a final abbreviation of Israel, or changed into il, which is the contraction of Israel; and if in the ancient Hebrew it was the sons of God, it is no wonder that the Septuagint rendered it the angels of God; the sons of God being in scripture a very common appellation of angels.

But whether this be so or not, it is evident, that when God threatened to withdraw his personal presence from Israel, upon their worshipping the golden calf, and to put them under the conduct of an angel, Exodus xxxii. 2, 3. the meaning of it was, that he would no longer preside over them in his own person, but subject them to the government of a president-angel, and therefore, Exod. xxiii. 21. he bids them beware of this angel, and obey his voice, and not provoke him; for, saith he, he will not pardon your iniquities : which plainly shews, that this angel was to

have had a ruling power over them to pardon or punish them at his own pleasure; so that that which God here threatened was, that he would put them in the same condition with other Gentile nations, who were subjected to the government of particular guardian angels; and so change their theocracy into an angelocracy. And so, as it is evident, Moses understood him; for Exod.xxxiii. 15,16. he thus prays: If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence. For wherein shall it be known here that I and thy people have found grace in thy sight? Is it not in that thou goest with us? so shall we be separated, I and thy people, from all the people that are on the face of the earth. Where it is very plain, that that which distinguished Israel from all other nations was this, that God himself in his own person immediately presided over them; and that if this distinction were taken away by God's withdrawing from them, and subjecting them to the presidence of an angel, they would be left in the same condition with other Gentile nations, who must therefore be supposed to be under the immediate conduct of

president angels. And this is most evident of the kingdom of Persia, and the kingdom of Greece in particular, Dan. X. 13. 20. where there is mention made of two angels under the character of the prince of Persia and the prince of Greece, and also of a third, viz. Michael, who is styled one of the chief princes, and Michael your prince, verse 21. and elsewhere the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people, Dan. xii. 1. And upon what other account can we suppose them to be styled the princes of those countries, but because they presided over them as their guardians and governors ? It is

true, as for the last of them, viz. Michael, he is supposed, by very learned expositors, to be no other than God the Son, who, as I have proved at large, was always the prince and guardian of Israel; but if he were not God the Son, but merely a created angel, it is certain he was not the president or guardian of Israel: since, as was shewn before, they had no other guardian but God himself: but, in all probability, he was the prince of those angels that ministered to God the Son in his guardianship and government of Israel; and consequently that angel of his to whom he intended to subject them, when he threatened to withdraw his personal conduct from them ; upon which account he might be called their prince, because under Christ he had a principal share in the protection and government of them. Now these guardian angels seem to have been archangels, or the princes of the distinct orders of angels; for so Michael is not only styled an archangel, Jude 9. but he is also said to have an army of angels under his command and conduct, and with them to have fought with the dragon, or Satan, (who was also an archangel,) and his angels, Rev. xii. 7. Now though Michael (supposing him to be a created spirit) was not a guardian angel, yet the prophecy of Daniel, by styling him one of the chief princes, plainly assures us that he was an angel of the same rank and degree with the princes or guardian angels of Persia and Greece: from whence it follows, that those guardian angels were archangels, as well as he, and consequently that they also had their angels or appropriate armies of angels, under their conduct and command; in which armies of theirs (whose ministry, without doubt, they always used in the administration of their respective guardianships) there is no question but there was an exact order and regiment, which cannot well be supposed, without supposing them particular officers subordinated to each other, under their respective princes or archangels; and this seems to be implied in that distinction which the apostle makes between these heavenly spirits, Col. i. 16. whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers; where by thrones he seems to mean the respective princes or archangels of the several orders; by dominions, or lordships, the reguli, or chief dignitaries under the archangels; by principalities, their governors of such provinces or cities as were within their guardianship; by powers, their inferior magistrates or officers.

These archangels therefore, who were the tutelar or guardian angels of countries, together with their respective cohorts or armies of angels, seem not to have been subjected to the mediatorial dominion of our Saviour, till after his ascension into heaven; at which time, it seems, God totally dissolved those angelocracies, or angelical governments of countries and nations, and subjected both them and the archangels (together with their armies of angels) that governed them, to the mediatorial sceptre of our Lord and Saviour; upon which he, who before was King only of the Jews, (vide vol, ii. p. 449.) became universal Lord and Emperor of the world; for so, Heb. ii. 5. we are told, that to the angels God hath not put in subjection the world to come, or future age, as it is in the Greek: where by the future age it is evident he means the time of the gospel; for this is the very phrase used by the Septuagint to express the state of Christianity, Isaiah ix. 6. where Christ is called Ilatne péraortos alūvos, the Father of this future age. This passage therefore, of God's not subjecting the future age to the angels, plainly implies that he had subjected the past age to them, by constituting them the guardians of nations; but that now in this age of the gospel he hath wholly dissolved that economy, by subjecting both the guardians and the nations they guarded to the dominion of our Lord and Saviour: so that now the whole world of angels is in the same subjection to Jesus Christ, as it seems Michael and his angels were before Christ's exaltation; that is, they are now no longer subject as deputy governors of provinces and nations, who as such were empowered to do good or hurt to those who were under their

government, according to their own discretion; but as the immediate attendants of his person, to whom nothing is left arbitrary, but all they do is determined by the sovereign will of him who employs them; for thus the scripture declares, that upon his ascension into heaven he was vested with new dominion over the angelical world; so we are told, 1 Pet. iii. 22. that it was upon his going into heaven, and sitting down at the right hand of God, that angels, and authorities, and powers were made subject unto him; and in Eph. i. 21. that God raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in heavenly places, far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, i. e. above all angels, of what rank and quality soever, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come; and accordingly, Col. ii. 10. he is said to be head of all principality and power, i. e. of all the heavenly hierarchy, as well as earthly do

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