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Thomas. Servants then were either bought with money, or were born in the house of their master; and it seems from the history of Sarah, Hagar, and Ishmael, that the conditions of servitude were very much the same with them as with us.
Olympas. How then came it to pass that Abra, ham could arm his servants, and trust his life and that of his family and all his property into their hands, and we dare not do so now?
Thomas. Abraham was a saint, and we are pro. fessors of Christianity. And saints, I suppose, had an art of attaching the hearts of their servants to themselves, which we Christians, in America, can never learn. But this is a mystery which I cannot develop. At all events, Abraham's servants acted valiantly and faithfully, and won the day.
Olympas. Give us the details of this battle, William.
William. Abraham commanded the battle in person. He divided his troops, and surrounded them in their encampment by night, and smote them with a great slaughter. He killed their king Chedorlaomer and his allied sovereigns, and pursued the retreating army as far as Hobab, on the left of the ancient city of Damascus.
Olympas. And what, Susan, came of Lot and his goods?
Susan. Abraham recovered his brother Lot and all his goods, and the women also, and all captured Sodomites that were in Lot's company, on account of which the king of Sodom went out to meet and congratulate old General Abraham.
Olympas. Did any other notable person meet Abraham, and congratulate him on this splendid ictory, James ?
James. The king of Salem met him.
Olympas. His name, James, and the meaning of it.
James. Melchisedeck, King of Salem, and Priest of the Most High God.
Olympas. What is the import of the term · Melchisedeck,” Eliza ?
Eliza. Melchos or Malak means king; and tsadik means righteousness or justice.
Olympas. Well, that is nearly the etymology of the word ; and it is enough for you to know that the compound term Melchi-sedeck means King of Righteousness, and Salem means Peace. You will observe that this is an official or an appellative name, rather than the name of a person. Who was the person, think you, William, that had this honourable standing in the days of Abraham ?
William. You gave us as your reasons for Shem, as being the person who at this time was King of Righteousness and Peace, and the High Priest of all the people of God then living. To which I know no objection, save that I have read of Melchisedeck in the one hundred and tenth Psalm, and also in the Hebrews, and it looks as if it was sometimes the name of a person.
Olympas. It was, indeed, the name of a person, as much as Israel was the name of a person-of the person called Jacob; but as the name Israel was given to Jacob, or as Peter to Simon, and Boanerges to James and John; so was Melchisedeck, in my opinion, given to Shem. You know the difference between faith and opinion. While I cannot, then, affirm as a fact, I intimate it as an opinion, and you must judge of it as such. What occurred, James, at this interview between Abraham and Melchisedeck ?
James. He met Abraham with bread and wine,” faint and fatigued as he was with the toils of the war.
Olympas. And what else, Susan ?
Susan. He blessed them in these words :“* Blessed be Abram of the Most High God, possessor of heaven and earth; and blessed be the Most High God, who hath delivered thine enemies into thine hand.”
Olympas. And what did Abraham give him, Susan ?
Susan. He gave him tithes of all.
Olympas. That is the tenth of all the goods he gained in the war; for the King of Salem was Priest of the Most High God; and, as such, entitled to an offering from the conqueror Abraham. Do you remember, Thomas, what Paul says on this transaction ?
Thomas. He descants upon the official pedigree and standing of this High Priest as far superior to the Aaronic priesthood, and represents Levi as paying tithes rather than as receiving them in the person of his progenitor Abraham. He represents him as one who had neither predecessor nor successor, nor any term of service; but as being the beginning and the ending of his peculiar office, underived from and incommunicable to, any other
person; essentially inalienable from his person and inseparable from his life. He was superior to all other priests: he blessed Abraham, who is thereby proclaimed his inferior, received tithes from bim, and presented to him bread and wine.
Olympas. Who was the antitype of Melchisedeck, Filiza?
Eliza. I am not sure that I understand the word “antitype."
Olympas. “Type" is a figure, and the “antitype" is the reality, or thing figured out in the type.
Eliza. Then Jesus is our High Priest, the antitype of Melchisedeck. He has neither beginning nor ending of days; he had no predecessor nor successor in office; and imparts blessings without receiving any thing in return but the offering of a grateful heart.
Olympas. What sort of a king at this time reigned over Sodom?
Eliza. He appears to have been a reasonable and grateful prince; for he offered Abraham all the spoils of the war, if he would return himn the persons he had recaptured from the great Chedor laomer.
Olympas. Would Abraham accept this offer, Susan ?
Susan. No, indeed! He said to the king of Sodom, “I have lifted up my hand to the Lord the Most High God, the possessor of heaven and earth, that I will not take from a thread even to a shoe-latchet, that I will not take any thing that is thine, lest thou should say I have made Abraham rich-save only the portion which the young men, Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre, my allies have eaten.'
Olympas. How noble this conduct of Abraham! He went to war not for booty nor for fame. He interposed for a friend and a brother; and having rescued him and avenged his wrongs, he asked no
He returned to his tent and reposed in peace. He had solemnly covenanted with God for victory, and he obtained it. He forgat not his