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3. He had no legislative power : which a Viceroy could not possibly have.
4. He was placed and displaced by God at pleasure : of which, as Viceroy, we see the perfect fitness; but as Sovereign by the people's choice, one cannot easily account for; because God did not chuse to supersede the natural Rights of his People, as appears by his leaving it, at first, to their own option whether they would have God himself for their King,
5. The very same punishment was ordained for cursing the King as for blaspheming God, namely, stoning to death; and the reason is intimated in these words of Abishai to David, Shall not Shimei be put to death for this, because he cursed the LORD's ANOINTED * ? This was the common title of the Kings of Israel and Judah, and plainly denoted their office of Viceroyalty: Iinproperly, and superstitiously transferred; in these later ages,, to Christian kings and Princes.
From this further circumstance, a l'iceroyalty is necessarily inferred: The throne and kingdom of Judea is all along expressly declared to be God's throne and God's kingdom. Thus, in the first book of Chronicles, it is said that Solomon sat on the THRONE OF THE LORD, as King, instead of David his father ti
. And the queen of Sheba, who visited Solomon, to be instructed in bis wisdom, and doubtless had been informed bybiin of the true nature of his kingdom, compliments him in these words: Blessed be the Lord thy God, which delighted in thee to set thee on uus THRONE, TO BE KING FOR THE LORD thy God. In like manner Abijih speaks to the house of Israel, on their defection from Rehoboam : And now ye think to with?staid the KINGDOM OF TILE Lord in the hands of the 2 Sum, xis, 21. + Chap. xxis, ver. 23. | 2 Chron. ix. 8.
sons of David*. And to the saine purpose, Nehemiah : Neither have our kings, oar princes, our priests, nor our futhers, kept thy lai', nor hearkened unto thy commandments, and thy testimonies, wherewith thou didst testify against them. For they have not served thee in THEIR KINGDOMT. The sense, I think, requires that the Septuagint reading should be here preferred, which says EN BACIAEIA Eor, IN THY KINGDOM.. And this the Syriac and Arabic versions follow. As Judea is always called his kingdom, so he is always called the King of the Jews. Thus the Psalmist: Thine Altar's, O Lord of Hosts, my KING, and my God I. And again: Let Israel rejoice in him that made him: let the children of Zion be joyful in their King-. And thus the Propbet Jeremiah: The King, whose name is the Lord of Fiosts llo
7. The penal Laws against idolatry were still in force during their Kings, and put in cxecution by their bsat ralers, and even by men inspired. Wich, alonę, is a demonstration of the subsistence of the THEOCRACY; because such laws are absolutely unjust under every other form of Government.
Aş to the title of King given to these Rulers, this will have small weigtit with those who reflect that Moses likewise, who was surely no more than God's ceputy, is called King: Moses commanded as a Law; even the inheritance of the congregation of Jucob. Ind he was King in Jeshurun, when the heads of the people, and the tribes of Isracl, wwe gathered tru„gether T.
Let us now see what the celebrated M. Le Clerc says in defence of the contrary opinion, which supposeth the THEOCRACY to liave ended with the Judges. 2 Chron. xii. 8.
+ Ch.ix. 34, 35. Psalm 1x.xxiv. 3. Psalın exlix. 2. ll Ch. li. 57
I Deut. xxxiii. "63
Father Simon of the Oratory had said, that the republic of the Hebreu's never acknowledged any other CHIEF than God alone, who continued to govern in that quality even during the time in which it was subject to kings*. This was enough to make his learned adversary take the other side of the question; wlio being piqued at Simon's contemptuous slight of his offered assistance in the project for a new Polyglott, revenged himself upon him in those licentious | Letters, intitled, Sentimens de quelques Theologiens de llollandi, where his only business is to pick a quarrel. lle thercfore maintains against Simon, That the theocracy ceased on establishing the throne in the race of David I. What he hath of argument to support this opinion is but little; and may be summed up in the following observation, That God did not PERSONALLY interfere with his directions, nor discharge the functions of a Magistrate after the establishment of the Kings us he pad done beforeģ. But this, instead of proving the abolition of the Theocracy, only shows that it was
• La Republique des llebreux difiere en cela de tous les autres états du monde, qu'elle n'a jamais reconnu pour chef que Dieu seul, qui a continué de la gouverner en cette qualité dans les tems nêmes, qu'elle a été soumise à des rois. Histoire Crit, de Vieux Test. p. 15. Ed. Rotterd. 1685. + Sec note [G] at the end of this Book,
Il paroît au contraire par l'Ecriture, que Dieu n'a gouverné lis republ des Hebreux, en qualité de chet politique, que pendant qu'ils n'avoient point des rois, & peut-être au conimenceinent que le rois furent établis, avant que la famille de David fut affermie sur le trône de Israel. Sentimers, &c. p. 78,
§ -Pendint tout ce leinps-la, Dieu fit les fonctions de roi, I! jugeoit des affaires mil repondoit par l'oracle-il regluit la marche de l'armée--il envovoit même quelquefois un ange-On n'étoit obligé d'obeir aveuglement, qu'aux sculs ordres de Dieu. Mais lors qu'il y eut des en Israël, & gne le royaume fut attaché à la fumille de Daviil, les rois fureni maîtres absolus, & Dieu cessa de faire leurs fonctions. pp. 78, 79.
administered administered by a Viceroy. For in what consists the voffice of a Viceroy but to discharge the functions of lis Principal? Ile had been a cipher, bad God still governed immediately, as before. Mr. Le Clerc could see that God acted by the ministry of the Judges *. If then the Theocratic function could be discharged by dęputation, why might it not be done by Kings as well as Judges? The difference, if any, is only from less to more, and from occasional to constant. No, says our Critic, the cession was in conscquence of his own declaration to Samuel : Far they have not rejected thee, but they have REJECTED ME, that I should not reign over them t: This only declares the sense God had of their mutinous request; but does not at all imply that lie gave way to it. For who, from the like words (which express so natural a resentinent of an open defection) would infer in the case of any other monarch, that he thereupon stepped down from his throne, and suffered an usurper to seize his place? This, we sce, was poor seasoning. But, luckily for his reputation, he had an Adversary who reasoned worse.--Ilowever, Simon saw thus mucla into Le Clerc's cavil, as to reply, That all he had said was quite beside the purpose, for that the thing to be proved way, thut, after the establishment of the Kings God was no longer the çiril Chief +
On -au lieu qu'auparavant Dieu lui-même la faisoit, par le ministere des Juges, qu'il susciteit de, tenips on tunts au milieu d'Israël. Def. des Seet. p. 121.
+ ----C'est pour cela que Dieu dit à Samuel, lors qn' Israël voulut avoir un soi pour le juger à la zraniére de toutes les nations : ce n'est pas tui qu'ils ont rejelté, mais moi, afin que je ne regne point
1 Sam. viii. 7. Je passe sous silence le long discours de Mr. le Clerc louchant le pouvsir de Dieu sur les Israëlites avant l’etablissement des rois, d'où il pretend prouver que Dieu pendant tout ce temps-la fit la fonction de roi, Tout cela est hors de propos, puis qu'il s'agit de
On which Le Clerc thus insults him: As much as to say, that in order to prove God was no longer Chief of the Hebrews after the election of a King, it is beside the purpose to shew, he never afterwards discharged the functions of a Chief of the republic. It is thus this great Genius happily unravels matters, and discovers, in an instant, what is, and what is not to the purpose * Whether Simon indeed knew why Le Clerc's objection was nothing to the purpose, is to be left to God and his own conscience, for he gives us no reasons for the censure he passes on it: but that it was indeed nothing to the purpose, is most evident, if tliis proposition be true, “ That a kig does not cease “ to be King, when he puts in a Viceroy, who executes “the regal office by deputation.”
Le Clerc returns to the charge in his Defence of the Sentiments :-“ The Israelites did not reject God as
Protector, but as civil Chief, as I observed before.
They would have a King who should determine “ sovereignly, and command their arinies. Which, “ before this, God himself did by the ministry of the “ Judges, whom he raised up, from time to time, from “the midst of Israel. In this sense we must under
stand absolutely the words of God, in Samuel, that " I should not reign over them t." It is indeed strange,
that, prouver, qu'apres ces temps la Dieu n'a plus été leur chef: & c'est ce qu'on ne prouvera jamais. Reponse aux Sentimens de quelques Theol. de Hol. p. 55. --C'est à dire, que pour prouver que Dieu n'a pas
été chef des llebreux, après l'election des rois, il est hors de propos de prouver qu'il n'a plus fait les fonctions de chef de la republique. C'est ainsi que ce grand genie debrouille heureusement les matieres, & découvre d'abo:dce qui est hors de propos, de ce qui ne l'est pas, Deiens. des Sentimens, p. 120.
+ Les Israël.tes ne rejetterent pas Dieu comme protecteur, mais comme chef politique, ainsi que je l'ai marqué. Ils voulurent