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‘ explain this of Antichrist, who shall appear in the end of “ the world.” In his annotations upon ver. 21st, Grotius’ expresseth an earnest wish for Suctorius, and other writers, made use of by Porphyry, for explaining what follows. In the mean time, he says, we must do the best we can with what we have. 13. Upon ver. 25th and 26th of the same xith ch. Jerom goes on : ‘These" things Porphyry explains of Antiochus 6 But our people, according to the fore-mentioned sense 6 interpret all of Antichrist.’ 14. I forbear to take any thing from Jerom's comment upon ver. 27–33. 15. Ver. 34, “Now when they shall fall, they shall be holden with a little help ; but many shall cleave to them with flatteries. Wer. 35, And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to purge, and to make them white, even to the time of the end ; because it is yet for a time appointed.” * • By" “the little help "Porphyry supposes to be intended * Mattathias, of the town of Modin, who rebelled against the generals of Antiochus, and endeavoured to uphold the worship of God. He calls it,” he says, “a little help,” because Mattathias was killed in battle, and afterwards his son Judas, called Maccabaeus, fell also ; and his brothers were imposed upon by the treachery of their adversaries. Read the books of the Maccabees. All these things, as he says, were therefore done, that the pious might be tried, and purified, and made white, to a certain time; because the victory was deferred to another time. But our people explain the little help under Antichrist after the following manner.’ See 1 Mac. ii. 1–5.
* Magno velim, ad explicanda quæ sequuntur, Suctorium mihi dari, quo usus olim Porphyrius. Eum multosque alios cum non habeamus, utendum nobis is scriptoribus qui restant, et is quae ex Porphyrio nobis dedit Hieronymus. Gr. in Dan. xi. 21.
* Haec Porphyrius interpretatur de Antiocho, qui adversus Ptolemaeum, sororis suae filium, profectus est cum exercitu magno. Nostri autem, secundum priorem sententiam, interpretantur onnia de antichristo. p. 1128.
* Parvulum auxilium, Mattathiam significari arbitratur Porphyrius de vico Modin, qui adversum duces Antiochi rebellavit, et cultum veri Dei servare conatus est. Parvum autem, inquit, auxilium vocat, quia occisusest in proclio Mattathias, et postea, Judas filius ejus, qui vocabatur Macchabaeus, pugnans cecidit, et cæteri fratres ejus adversariorum fraude decepti sunt. Lege Macchabaeorum libros. Haec, ait, omnia idcirco sunt facta, ut probentur et eligantur sancti, et dealbentur usque ad tempus praefinitum ; quia in aliud tempus erat dilata victoria. Sub antichristo parvum auxilium nostri intelligi volunt——p. 1130.
16. Ver. 36, “And the king shall do according to his
will. And he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvellous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper, till the indignation be accomplished. For that that is determined shall be done.” ‘This" also,” says Jerom, we understand of Antichrist. “But Porphyry and they who follow him think it to be said of Antiochus Epiphanes, who set up himself against the worship of God, and arrived at such pride, as to order his own statue to be set up in the temple at Jerusalem. “And shall prosper, till the indignation be accomplished.” This they understand after this manner; that he should prevail, till God is offended with him, and appoints his death. Forasmuch as the historians Polybius and Diodorus relate, that he did not only oppose himself to the God of Judea, but likewise, that moved by avarice he attempted to plunder the temple of Diana in Elimais, which was very rich; but was hindered by the guardians of the temple, and by neighbouring nations; and that having been agitated by terrifying thoughts and apprehensions, he became mad, and so expired. They say, this happened because he had attempted to violate the temple of Diana. We say, if that was his end, it befell him because he had exercised great cruelty toward the saints of God, and had polluted his temple; for it is more reasonable to think, that he was punished for what he had done, than for what he had only attempted to do, and then forbore from an apprehension of guilt.” 17. Afterwards, in his comment upon ver. 44, 45, Jerom again observes what Porphyry said concerning the death of Antiochus, which he had collected out of divers authors:
* Quod quidem et nos de antichristo intelligimus. Porphyrius autem, et cateri qui sequuntur eum, de Antiocho Epiphane dici interpretantur, quod erectus sit contra cultum Dei, et in tantam superbiam venerit, ut in templo Hierosolymis simulacrum suum poni jusserit. Quodgue sequitur, ‘Et diriget, donec compleatur ira, quia in ipso erit consummatio,' sic intelligunt, tam diu eum posse, donec irascatur ei Deus, et ipsum interfici jubeat. Siquidem Polybius et Diodorus, qui Bibliothecarum scribunt historias, narrant eum non Solum contra Deum fecisse Judaeae, sed avaritiae facibus accensum, etian templum Dianae in Elimaïde, quod erat ditissimum, spoliare conatum; oppressumque a custodibus templiet vicinis circum gentibus, et quibusdam phantasis atdue terroribus, versum in amentiam, ac postremum morbo interiisse. Et hoc ei accidisse commemorant, quia templum Dianae violare comatus est. Nos autem dicinus, etiam si accidisset ei, ideo accidisse, quia in Sanctos Dei multam exercuerit crudelitatem, et polluerit templum ejus. Non enim pro eo quod conatus est facere, et actä poenitentiã desivit implere, sed pro eo quod fecit, punitus esse credendus est, p. 1131.
* Which is,' that having gone into the east, when he came into the province of Elimais, the remotest country of the PersiansTying that way ; when he attenmpted to plumder the templè of Diana, which had in it abündance of rich offerings, he was put to flight by the barbarians, who greatly respected that temple, and died overwhelmed with grief in Tabes, a city of Persia. This he writes by way of argument against us in a very artful manner: and if he could show that those things are said, not of antichrist, but of Antiochus, what is that to us, who do mot attempt to prove the coming of Christ, nor of his opposite, antichrist, out of every text of scripture ? Allowing these things to be said of Antiochus, what prejudice is that to our cause ? Rather let him set aside doubtful things, and keep to such as are clear. Let him say, who is “ that stone, which being cut out of the mountain without hands,” should increase to a great mountain, and was to fill the whole earth, and to break in pieces the fourfold image ; and who is that Son of man who is to come with the clouds, and to be brought before the Ancient of days, to whom was to be givem a kingdom that has no end ; and whom all people and nations and tongues should serve ? These things, which are manifest, he passeth over, and affirms they relate to the Jews, whom nevertheless we * know to be still in bondage ; and he likewise says, that
° Et in hoc loco Porphyrius tale nescio quid de Antiocho somniat. Pugnans, inquit, contra Ægyptios, et Libyas Æthiopasque pertransiens, audiet sibi ab Aquilone, et ab Oriente prœlia concitari: unde et regrediens capiet Aradios resistentes.——* Et veniet,' inquit, * usque ad summitatem ipsius montis,' in Elimaïde provinciâ, quæ est ultima Persarum ad Orientem regio: ibique volens templum Dianæ spoliare, quod infinita domaria habebat, fugatus a barbaris est, qui mirâ veneratione famum illud suspiciebant, et mortuus est moerore consumtus in Tabes, oppido Persidis. Hæc ille, in sugillationem nostri, artificiosissimo sermone composuit. Quæ etiam si potuerit approbare, non de antichristo dicta, sed de Antiocho ; quid ad nos, qui non ex omnibus scripturarum locis Christi probamus adventum, et antichristi memdacium ? Pone enim hæc dici de Antiocho, quid nocet religioni nostræ ? Numquid et in superiori visione, ubi in Antiocho prophetia consummata est, aliquid de antichristo dicitur ? Dimittat itaque dubia, et in manifestis hæreat: dicatque, quis sit ille lapis, qui, de monte abscissus sine manibus, creverit in montem magnum, et orbem impleverit, et quadriformem imaginem contriverit : qui sit ille filius hominis, qui cum nubibus venturus sit, et staturus ante vetustum dierum et dandum ei regnum, quod mullo fine claudatur; omnesque populi, tribus, ac linguæ ipsi servituri sunt. Hæc, quæ manifesta sunt, præterit, et de Judæis asserit prophetari, quos usque hodie servire cognoscimus. Et dicit eum, qui sub nomine Danielis scripsit librum, ad refocillandam spem suorum fuisse mentitum ; non quo omnem historiam futuram nôsse potuerit, sed quo facta
memoraret. Nostri autem extremum visionis hujus capitulum super antichristo Sic exponunt. p. 1133.
‘ he who wrote the book in the name of Daniel, told lies to “ please and comfort his own people; he pretended to pro“ phesy, but indeed only wrote history.’ Jerom then proceeds to show how our people, as he says, explain the last paragraph of this vision concerning antichrist; and then he concludes his observations upon this chapter. ‘This,” says he, “I have now shown with some “prolixity, that I might expose the folly of Porphyry, who ‘ either was ignorant of these things, or pretended not to ‘ know them; and likewise to show the difficulty of the “sacred scriptures, which many people, and even such as ‘ are very unskilful, pretend to understand, without the grace of God, or an acquaintance with the doctrine of our an* cestors.” Concerning the death of Antiochus, they who have opportunity may do well to consult 1 Maccabees ch. vi. and 2 Macc. ch. ix. and Josephus' in his Antiquities; to whom might be added & Polybius, not forgetting" the Connexion of that learned modern writer Humphry Prideaux. 18. The beginning of the twelfth chapter of the book of Daniel is in these terms. “And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince that standeth for the children of thy people; and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was, since there was a nation, even to that same time. And at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame, and everlasting contempt. And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and they that turn many to righteousness, as the stars for ever and ever.” “Hitherto,” says Jerom, ‘Porphyry has written with
* Hoc ideo prolixius posui, ut et Porphyrii ostendam calumniam, qui hac omnia ignoravit, aut nescire se finxit: et scripturae Sanctae difficultatem, cujus intelligentiam absolue Dei gratiâ, et doctrină majorum, Sibi imperitissimi vel
maxime vendicant. p. 1134. f L. xii. cap. 9. al. 13. & Ap. Excerpt. Walesii. p. 144. * Connexion, at the year before Christ, 164, p. 200. i Hactenus Porphyrius utcumque
se tenuit, et tam nostrorum imperitis, quam suorum male eruditis, imposuit. De hoc capitulo quid dicturus est, in quo mortuorum describitur resurrectio, aliis suscitatis in vitam aeternam, et aliis in opprobrium sempiternum ?—— Sed quid non faciat pertinacia ——Et hoc, inquit, de Antiocho Scriptum est, qui vadens in Persidem, Lysiae, qui Antiochiae et Phoenicia præerat, reliquit exercitum, ut adversus Judaeos pugnaret, urbemdue eorum Jerusalem subverteret; quae omnia narrat Josephus, historiae auctor Hebræae; quod talis fuerit tribulatio, qualis nunquam; et tempus advenerit, quale non fuit, ex quo gentes esse coeperunt usque ad illud tempus. Reddità autem victoriá, et capsis Antiochi ducibus, ipsoque Antiocho in Perside mortuo, salvatus est
some sort of reserve and modesty, and has imposed upon unskilful people among us, and the ill-instructed on his own side; but what can he say upon this paragraph, in which the resurrection of the dead is spoken off There is nothing which the perverseness of men may not do. His explication is this: And this also is written of Antiochus, who when he went into Persia, he left an army with Lysias, who was governor of Antioch and Phoenicia, that he might fight with the Jews, and destroy their city Jerusalem; all which things are related by Josephus, the Jewish historian, showing, that there was then such distress as never had been before. But the Jews overcoming, and the generals of Antiochus being slain, and himself having died in Persia, the people of Israel were delivered; even “all they who were written in the book of God,” that is, who had valiantly stood up for the law. On the contrary, they were “blotted out of the book,” who had apostatized from the law, and joined the interest of Antiochus. Then, says he, they who, as it were, “slept in the dust of the earth,” and were covered over with the weight of affliction, and were, as it were, buried in sepulchres, rose out of the “dust of the earth” to unexpected victory. The keepers of the law lifted up their heads out of the ground, rising to eternal life; and the apostates from it to “everlasting contempt.” The masters and teachers who understood the law, “will shine as the firmament,” and they who had exhorted the lower orders of the people to keep God’s ordinances, “will shine as the stars for ever and ever.” He also allegeth the history of the Maccabees, in which it is said, that many of the Jews fled into the deserts, and hid themselves in caves and holes of the rocks, and after the victory came out. This, he says, is
populus Israël: omnes qui scripti in libro Dei, hoc est, qui legem fortissime defenderunt, et e contrario, qui deleti Sunt de libro, hoc est, qui praevaricatores exstiterunt legis et Antiochi fuerunt partium. Tunç, ait, hiqui quasi in terræ pulvere dormiebant, et operti erant malorum pondere, et quasi in Sepulcris miseriarum reconditi, ad insperatam victoriam de terræ pulvere resurrexerunt: et de humo elevaverunt caput custodes legis, resurgentes in vitam asternam, et praevaricatores in opprobrium sempiternum. Magistri autem et doctores, qui legis notitiam habuerunt, fulgebunt quasi coelum ; et qui inferiores populos exhortati sunt ad custodiendas caeremonias Dei, ad instar astrorum fulgebunt in perpetuas aetermitates. Ponit quoque historiam de Macchabaeis, in quâ dicitur, multos Judaeorum sub Mattathià et Juda Macchabaeo ad eremum confugisse, et latuisse in speluncis, et in cavernis petrarum, ac post victoriam processisse;— et häoc pierapopticag, quaside resurrectione mortuorum esse praedicta. Tempore autem antichristi talem tribulationem fore, qualis nunquam fuit ex quo gentes esse coeperunt, melius intelligitur. p. 1135.