...Christ said, "These things I say unto you that ye might be saved." John v. 34; (not eternal salvation ; there is no might be in it) ; but from temporal ruin and destruction as a nation. "And ye will not come unto me that ye might have life" Verse 40. Temporal and corporeal life, and safety from the death that was coming upon them, even the dreadful death, massacre, and awful ruin which came upon this wicked generation, (See Matt, xxiii. 36—38,) for their disbelief and contempt of Christ as the Messiah. Thus the safety and life here spoken of, which was temporal, they might have had, (according to the conditions of their legal covenant of works, which they were still under,) had they repented of their errors, abandoned their traditions, and reformed their manners, conformed to their Scriptures, and nominally and legally believed in Christ, and received him as the Messiah, taken his counsel and advice, and believed that he was the " Meat which endureth unto everlasting life."
But being still rebellious and determined to take their own wicked course, even against the clearest evidence; and thirsting for his innocent blood, and if possible, to have it, by employing even deceitful witnesses, they forfeited their lives to the judgments of God, in the destruction of their city, temple, and nation. And this confirms the truth of David's statement, that " Bloody and deceitful men shall not live out half their days." Psa. lv. 23. And Solomon says, " The fear of the Lord prolongeth days, but the years of the wicked are shortened;" Prov. x. 27, " The wicked shall be cut off from the earth." Prov. xi. 22; " The wicked shall be driven away in his wickedness; Prov. xiv. 32. So it was with this rebellious generation—" Their heart was not right with God, neither were they steadfast in his covenant; Psa. lxxviii. 37; the legal covenant, made at Sinai, Exodus xxiv. 7; called in Heb. viii. 13, the old covenant, which was decaying, and ready to vanish away ; and which was entirely conditional; " This do, and thou shalt live;" Deut. xxx. 19; Luke x. 28; or
" Cursed be the man that obeyeth not the words of this covenant." Jer. xi. 3.