(continuing) *The time of our Lord's appearance was signified by the state of the Jews; by the condition of the heathen world; by the comparison between the two temples; and even by the precise number of years which should intervene.
*The prophets having given various marks of the Messiah who was to come, it seemed necessary that these marks should all concur at the same period. Thus it was necessary that the fourth monarchy should be established before the expiration of Daniel's seventy weeks, that the sceptre should then depart from Judah, and that the Messiah should then immediately appear. In pursuit of which predictions, our Lord appeared at this juncture, and demonstrated his claim to the style and character of the Messiah.
*It is foretold, that under the fourth monarchy, before the destruction of the second temple, before the dominion of the Jews was taken away, and in the seventieth of Daniel's weeks, the heathens should be led into the knowledge of the only true God, worshipped by the Jews; that those who sincerely feared and loved him should be delivered from their enemies, and should be replenished with higher degrees of his fear and love. …
Who is so ignorant, as not to distinguish and acknowledge our Lord, after the numerous prophetical tokens and circumstances of his history? For it was expressly declared,
That he should have one special messenger and forerunner: (Mal. iii. 1.)
That he should be born an Infant: (Isaiah ix. 6.)
That his birth-place should be the city of Bethlehem; that he should spring from the tribe of Judah, and house of David; that he should exhibit himself more especially at Jerusalem: (Mic. v. 2.)
That he should veil the eyes of the wise and learned, and preach the gospel to the poor; that he should restore sight to the blind, health to the diseased, and light to those who languished under darkness: (lsa. vi. 8, 29.)
That he should teach the true and perfect way, and should be the great instructor of the Gentiles: (lsa. xlii. 5.)
That he should offer himself as a sacrifice for the sins of the whole world: (lsa. liii.) .
That he should be the chief corner-stone, elect and precious: (lsa. xxviii. 16.)
That he should, at the same time, be a stone of stumbling, and rock of offence: (lsa. viii. 14.)
That the Jews should fall upon this rock: (lsa. viii. 15.)
That this stone should be rejected by the builders; should be made by God the head of the corner, (Psal. cxviii.;) should grow into a great mountain and fill the whole earth, (Dan. ii. 35.)
That the Messiah should be disowned, rejected, betrayed, sold, buffeted, derided, afflicted by a thousand different methods, (Zech. xi. 12;) that they should give him gall to eat, should pierce his hands and his feet, should strike him on the face, should kill him, and cast lots upon his vesture: (Psal. lxix. 21 ; xxii. 17, 18.)
That he should rise again the third day from the dead: (Psal. xvi. 10.)
That he should ascend into heaven, and sit at the right hand of God: (Hosea vi. 3; Psal. cx. 2.)
That kings should arm themselves to oppose his authority: (Psal. ii. 2.)
That, sitting at the right hand of the Father, he should triumph over all his enemies: (Psal. cx. 1.)
That the kings of the earth should fall down before him, and all nations do him homage and service: (Isa. Ix. 10.)
That the Jews should still remain: (Jer. xxxi. 36.)
That they should remain in a wandering and desolate condition, without princes, without sacrifices, without altars, without prophets; ever hoping for safety, and ever disappointed of their hope: (Hosea iii.4; Amos, Isa.)
[This is from Pascal’s Thoughts on Religion, Nelson, London, 1846, chapter 15.