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pire shall ever exist upon earth again, till the spiritual empire of Jesus Christ, over the hearts, minds, souls, consciences, and lives of men takes place. JESUS, maugre all opposition, shall be an universal monarch, and theonly universal monarch whoshalleverexist again.
It is not, however, expressly asserted in the prophecy before us, that the Roman empire should be split into ten kingdoms. It is only said, the kingdom shall be divided. But thongh it is not asserted in so many words, it is strongly intimated by the ten toes of the two feet of the image. And the wholeismorefully explained in DANIEL'S vision, recorded in the seventh chapter, where the beast, which is symbolical of the Roman empire, is represented with ten horns, as here the image with ten toes. And, indeed, it is necessary to the full understanding of this dream of NEBUCHADNEZZAR, that we shyuld compare it with the vision of DANIEL, which signifies the same thing under different images, with some additional cir: cumstances. This vision of DANIEL was near fifty years after the dream of NEBUCHADNEZZAB. The first part of the vision is in Dan. vii. 1-7-8.
After this, the prophet had a representation of theevere lasting FATHER of the universe, with his eternal Son, the blessed Jesus, passing sentence upon thelittlehornin these verses. A horn is a symbolical representation of government, power, dominion. The government signified by this little horn was to be utterly destroyed, and Jesus is to erect his universal empire upon the ruins of it. See Dan. vii. 9–14. This is the same glorious and univere sal kingdom of MESSIAH, which is described in NEBUCHAD NEZZAR's dream. Compare Dan. ii. 35–44.
When DANIEL had beheld the judgment of the little horn, he did not understand the meaning of it. He was, therefore, greatly troubled, and very desirous of knowing what the whole signified. After a little time, he took courage and went up to one of the glorious Beings, who stood by to enquire. Whereupon the happy Spirit, that was in the train of Messiah, laid open to DANIEL the outlines of the whole history of the corruptions of the Christian church-their rise--their progress--theiramaz
ing enormity—their subversion—and their totaldemolition: See Dan. vii. 15-28,
These are wonderful predictions*, in which we are almost nearly concerned; because the awful times of which they speak, we have reason to believe, are just at hand; and we none of us know how soon we may be involved in the distresses which are here foretold. The Roman empire, we have seen, was to be broken up, and divided into ten kingdoms. Some time soon after the formation of these tenkingdoms, which are denominated horns, there was to rise one little horn, one small doininion, underpeath, or from behind three of the ten horns, or kingdoms, into which the empire should be divided. This little horn was to conquer and subdue three of the ten horns, and to usurptheirdominion. After this, it was to go on and increase moreand more till it had obtained a peculiar kind of power and jurisdiction overall the seven other horns. This one little horn, that was become so great and powerful, was also to grow proud, and vain, and cruel, and bloody, and tyrannical, and idolatrous, aud avile persecutor of the true servants of the living God. This hora ribly bloody, and tyrannical power was to be aided and assisted in its cruelties towardsthe genuine followers of the LAMB, by all the other seven kingdoms, over which it had obtainedan unbounded influence. This wicked and crue dominion was to continue a time and times audhalf a time. Atime here, in prophetic language, signifies a Jewish year, which consisted of only 360 days. The times then will signify twice 360 days; and halj a time will signify half of 360 days, or 180 days. But a day in the language
of prophecy, is put for a year. If, therefore, we add these numbers together, they will be thrice 360 years, and 180 years, or exactly 1260 years, for the continuance of this bloody and tyrannical power; at the end of which period it is to be completely and everlastingly destroyed.
* The reader will find these, and other predictions of Daniel, ably explained by the late Bishop Newton in his Dissertations on the Prophe çies. Few of our most able writers on the Prophecies, however, seem to me to have any idea that they apply to the Protestant establishments
Now, let us look back and see whether all thesestrange predictions of DANIEL have ever been accomplished.
The Roman empire was to be destroyed. It was so in the fifth and sixth centuries. It was to be divided into a number of small kingdoms. It was so in the fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth centuries. A little horn was to arise, unperceived, and subdue three of the ten horns. The Bishop of Rome, inasort of secret and imperceptible manner, did arise to temporal dominion, and subdued, by the help of Perin, king of France, three of those ten states, into which the empire had been divided; the senate of Rome, the kingdom of Lombardy, and the exarchate of Ravenna; three governments all in Italy. And, it is extremely remarkable, that upon becoming master of these three states, the Bishop of Rome assumed a triple crown, which he hath worn ever since, and which he continues to wear to this very day!—This is wonderful!
Now the Bishop of Rome was to retain his power over these three states, and his influence over the seven other kingdoms 1260 years. If we knewexactly when to begin to reckon these years, we should know precisely when the destruction of Antichrist would take place * Some begin to reckon froin the year 606, when the proud Prelate of Rome was declared Universal Bishop. Others begin from the year 666, theapocalyptic number; and others from the year 756, when he became a temporal prince. If the first period is right, then the Pope of Rome, the undoubted Antichrist of the New Testament, will be completely destroyed as a horn, about the year 1866. If the second period is intended by the Spirit of Prophecy, then his end will be near the year 1926. But if the third period is the time, then Antichrist will retain some part of his dominion over the nations till about the year 2016t.
as well as to the Catholic kingdoms. All these things are against us, and we are usually extremely backward to believe what we do not wish to be true.
* The temporal power of the Pope is already gone: what further re. mains to be done, a little more time, a few more fleeting years. will shew. How eventful is the present period!
+ The number of Bishops, whom we usually call Popes, who have pre.
Most evident it is, that he is rapidly falling. There is a great deal, however, yet to be done. But, when God works, who shall let? Much has been already done, and all will be accomplished in due time. Not ONE WOUD shall fall to the ground of all that the LORD hath spoken,
Nay, not only shall Antichrist be overthrown, but even Rome itself, the place and city where he hath carried on his abominations for so many ages, shall be everlastingly destroyed. The language of scripture is extremely strong, and seems sufficiently clear and precise *.
Thus DANIEL:-I beheld then because of the voice of the great words which the horn spake : I beheld even till. the beast was slain, and his body destroyed and given to the BURNING FLAME. Thus too St. PAUL, where he is probably speaking of Antichrist :-The LORD JESUS shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, in flaming fire, iaking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the Gospel of our LORD JESUS CHRIST: who shall be punished with everlasting destruc. tion from the presence of the LORD, and from the glory of his power.-And again, in another place, in the same Epistle, where he is certainly and professedly speaking of Antichrist, he saith ;- And then shall that WICKED be revealed, whom the LORD shall CONSUME with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming. --Thus too St. Joun : The Beast goeth into PERDITION.-- Again :-Her plagues shall be in one day, and she shall be UTTERLY BURNT WITH FIRE. The kings of the earth. shalt bewuil her, and lament for her, when they see the SMOKE of her BURNING, standing afar off for fear of her torment, saying, Alas! Alas! that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in on Hour is thy judgement come.--In ONE HOUR so great riches are come to NOUGHT!~They shall see the SMOKE
of sided over the Romish church from its first institution by the Apostles, jo about two hundred and fifty or sixty; they have, therefore, presided only about seven years apiece upon an average.
• It is granted, all the passages upon this subject are figurative and prophetic, and therefore must be interpreted with caution; but yet they seem so strong and precise, that we cannot well understand them in any more moderate sense. The Reader will compare them together, and form his own judgement.
of her BURNING !- And a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, Thus with vioLENCE shall that great city Babylon be THROWN DOWN, and shall be FOUND NO MORE AT ALL. And the voice of harpers, and musicians, and trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee. And no craftsman, of whatever craft he be, shall be found any more in thee; and the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all in thee ; and the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee. - Immediately after these words, all the inhabitants of heaven are represented as rejoicing, and saying, HALLELUJAH! And ker SMOKE rose up for ever and ever.
It will be allowed, these are very strong expressions, and imply a punishment extremely severe. It is remarkable too, that all the country about the city of Rome, is a kind of bitumen, or pitchy substance. And in the year of our LORD 80, a fire burst out from beneath the
ground, in the middle of the city, and burnt four of the i principal Heathen temples, with the sacred buildings of
the Capitol. Italy, indeed, is a storehouse of fire. And when the 1260 years are expired, Rome itself, with all its magnificence, will be absorbed into a lake of fire, sink into the sea, and rise no more at all for ever*.
It was this grand Antichristian apostacyt, of which we have been speaking, that St. Paul unquestionably alludes to in 2 Thes. ii. 1-12; in ! Tim. iv. 1-3; and in 2 Tim. iii. 1-5. St. John speaks of the same thing, 1 John ii, 18, 22; and in the book of Revelation he hath described the abominations of the Church of Rome at
* Being persuaded of the destruction of this metropolis of the Christian world, one cannot help feeling pleasure that the French have removed many of the finest pieces of art from this vast repository of curiosities.
+ ALEXANDER Pope, Esq. though a Catholic, as is supposed, to the day of his death, was convinced that the Church of Rome had all the marks of that Antichristian power, predicted in the writings of the Neru Testament. And though he had not courage to profess himself a Probestant, he was firmly persuaded of the truths of Christianky, Rurf#SAD, p. 54%.