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kingdom of the stone, and the kingdom of the mountain.
Though the stone is now no longer a small one; we are still, I apprehend, living under its kingdom: for the kingdom of the mountain is either still future, or at leasť is only now commencing. The action of the stone, it is to be observed, breaks in pieces the feet of the image ; and, when that is effected, the kingdom of the mountain begins. Messiah's empire therefore is yet in the condition of the stone, as contradistinguished from that of the mountain, when it smites the image upon its feet : and it is not until after the dissipation of the image, that it assumes its montiform condition. But the feet of the image, branching out into ten toes, correspond with the ten horns or ten Gothic kingdoms of the Roman empire : and in the days of these kingdoms we are at present undoubtedly living. Now these kingdoms are still in existence : therefore they have not as yet been dissipated by the action of the stone.
Perhaps in the late tremendous revolutions of Europe we may discern the commencement of her future more awful visitation ; for the prophecies lead us to expect, that the judgments of God will go forth shortly before the end of the 1260 years, though they will continue to be operative subsequent to the termination of that period : and, as these seem to be the beginning of sorrows to the Antichristian faction; so, in the present unexampled circulation of the Holy Scriptures and in the
laudable efforts of various missionary societies, we may behold ineasures very rapidly taking for the near erection of the kingdom of the mountain. The final smiting of the image will occur, when the Antichristian confederacy is destroyed in the apocalyptic battle of Armageddon, subsequent to the close of the 1260 years. Then will commence the predicted kingdom of the mountain, as contradistinguished from the kingdom of the stone : and this kingdom is plainly the same as that millennian reign of Christ and his saints, not in heaven but upon earth, which is so largely celebrated both by Daniel and by St. John. The probable nearness of these grand events is indeed an awful subject of meditation : but, so far as I can judge, it is truly a subject of terror to none save God's irreclaimable enemies. Every Christian, who is interested in the predicted glories of his Lord, may without any undue presumption exclaim; Amen, eden so come, Lord Jesus !!
2. In one respect, Daniel is more minutely accurate than any of the prophets : for he not only predicts the manifestation of the Messiah, but expressly mentions the very period of time by which his advent might be calculated.
At the close of seventy weeks of years reckoned from an edict of the Persian king to restore and rebuild the mystic Jerusalem, the ministry of Christ was to be accomplished : and, afterwards,
See my Dissert, on the 1260 days. passim,
the destruction of the city and the sanctuary, and the desolation and dispersion of the Jews, were to take place.'
Accordingly, as it had been foretold, Messiah the Prince made his ministerial appearance in the course of the last week of the four hundred and ninety years, and expired upon the cross precisely at the close of that period.
That this mode of computing the number prevailed among the Jews themselves before the advent of our Lord, is manifest from the circumstance of so many impostors starting up about the tiine of Christ's appearance and availing themselves of the prevalent belief: for, unless the Messiah had been then expected, there would have been no opportunity afforded for the machinations of any false Messiah. Indeed it is expressly asserted by Tacitus, that such an expectation was prevalent in those days. Many were persuaded, says he, that the era was now arrived, which had been predicted in the ancient books of the priests, when the East should prevail, and when those who came out of Judea should obtain the sovereignty.
The Jews, in order to elude the force of this prophecy, are reduced to the miserable shift of pretending, that the advent of the Messiah is delayed on account of their sins. As if it was probable, that a circumstance, which would rather require the presence than the absence of Christ,
? Dan. ix. 24-27.
? Tacit. Hist. lib. v. sect. 13.
whose office is to convert sinners to repentance, should change the immutable purpose of God.'
VI. We may now proceed to adduce the testimony of Amos.
This prophet foretells the manifestation of our Lord, the call of the Gentiles, and the final conversion and restoration of Israel.
In that day will I raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, and close up the breaches thereof : and I will raise up his ruins, and I will build it, as in the days of old : that they may possess the remnant of Edom, and of all the Heathen which are called by my name, saith the Lord, that doeth this—And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall build the waste cities, and inhabit them: and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them. And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them, saith the Lord thy God."
VII. The next prophet, that speaks of the events which connect the Law and the Gospel, is Micah.
1. He foretells, that in the last days there shall be a general conversion of the Gentiles to the worship of the true God; and he declares, that Jeru
Por a more particular explanation of this remarkable prophecy, see my Dissert, on Daniel's lxx weeks.
salem shall be the centrical place, from which the knowledge of divine truth shall be conveyed to the ends of the earth.
In the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills ; and the people shall flow unto it. And many nations shall come and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths : for the Law shall go forth out of Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.”
2. Micah speaks also, with much precision, of the birth-place of Christ, the extension of his religion to the ends of the earth, the general conversion of the Gentiles, and the office which the Jews are destined to sustaio among them as missionaries in the last ages when they shall themselves have been converted to the faith.
But thou, Bethlehem-Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me, that is to be ruler in Israel ; whose going's forth have been of old, from everlasting-And he shall stand and feed in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God; and they shall abide, for now shall he be great unto the ends of the earth.— And the remnant of Jacob shall be in the midst of many
I Micah ir, 1, 2.