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which thou sawest, is that great city which reigns over the kings of the earth :" yet by the city, in this case, is not meant so much what was contained within those Roman walls, as the Roman empire; as is evident by chap. xi. 8, " And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt." Here, by the great city, neither Mr. Lowman himself, nor I suppose any other Protestant interpreter, understands the city of Rome, strictly speaking, but the Roman monarchy.

And though it be true, as Mr. Lowman observes, the Pope's ecclesiastical monarchy, and power, and influence, through Christendom, was greatly established and advanced by Pepin's making him a temporal prince over the exarchate of Ravenna; yet, I would ask, whether the Pope's power and influence in the world, and his ability to disturb the quiet of the nations of Christendom, and (as it is expressed in Daniel) to change times and laws, and to carry his own designs, in the various countries and kingdoms of Europe, was not greater before Pepin, than it is now, and has been for a long time? And yet Mr. Lowman supposes that now is properly the time of Antichrist's reign, that the twelve hundred and sixty years of his reign continues, and will continue for about two hundred and seventy years longer; though his power be now so small, and has been declining ever since the reformation, and still declines continually.

One thing that Mr. Lowman supposes confirms his opinion of so late a beginning of the twelve hundred and sixty years of the reign of the beast, is the order of the several periods of this prophecy, and the manner of their succeeding one another.

As to his particular scheme of the seven periods, so divided and limited, and so obviously ranked in such order, and following one another in such direct and continued succession, and each ending in a state of peace, safety and happiness to the church of God, it seems to me to be more ingenious than solid, and that many things might be said to demonstrate it not to be founded in the truth of things, and the real design of the divine Author of this prophecy. But now to enter into a particular and full examination of it, would be to lengthen out this discourse far beyond its proper limits. I would only observe (which directly concerns my present purpose) that to make out this scheme, Mr Lowman supposes that the fifth and sixth trumpets, that bring on the two first woes, and the whole 9th chapter of the Revelation, altogether respects the Saracens. But it appears to me not very credible that the Saracens should have so much said of them in this prophecy, as to have a whole chapter taken up about them, and not a word in the whole prophecy be said about the Turks who immediately succeeded them* in the same religion, and proceeding on the same principles, and were so much more considerable, and brought vastly greater calamities on the Christian world, and have set up and long maintained one of the greatest, strongest and most extraordinary empires that ever the world saw, and have been the most terrible scourge to Christendom, that ever divine Providence made use of, and one of the greatest of all God's plagues on the world of mankind.

Mr. Lowman, in pursuance of his scheme, also supposes (which is yet more incredible) this period of the trumpets ends in a state of safety, peace and happiness to the church of God; so that, on that occasion, there are great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our

For though it be true, that the reign of Othman, or Ottoman, who began what they call the Ottoman empire, was a long time after this; yet the Turks themselves, under other princes in the government they set up in territories that had formerly been possessed by Christians, and in their overrunning and ravaging Christian countries, immediately succeeded the Saracens; and from thenceforward have been a terrible, and almost continual scourge to the church.

Lord and of his Christ, chap. xi. 15. And yet he supposes, that it issues in setting up the kingdom of Antichrist; and that about that very time, when these heavenly voices so joyfully proclaimed this, the beast was enthroned, and the time, times and half, or twelve hundred and sixty days of his reign began, which is spoken of everywhere, as the time of the church's greatest darkness and trouble, the time wherein the little horn should wear out the saints of the Most High, Dan. vii. 25. The time appointed for his scattering the power of the holy people, Dan. xii. 7. The time of the woman's being in the wilderness, Rev. xii. 6, 14. The time of treading under foot the court of the temple, chap. xi. 2. And the time of the witnesses prophesying in sackcloth, chap. xi. 3.

However, I do not deny that the time when Mr. Lowman supposes the reign of the beast began, even the time when Pepin confirmed to the Pope his temporal dominions in Italy, was a time of the great increase and advancement of the power of Antichrist in the world, and a notable epoch. And if I may be allowed humbly to offer what appears to me to be the truth with relation to the rise and fall of Antichrist, it is this. As the power of Antichrist, and the corruption of the apostate church, rose not at once, but by several notable steps and degrees; so it will in the like manner fall: and that divers steps and seasons of destruction to the spiritual Babylon, and revival and advancement of the true church, are prophesied of under one. Though it be true, that there is some particular event that prevails above all others in the intention of the prophecy, some one remarkable season of the destruction of the church of Rome and papal power and corruption, and advancement of true religion, that the prophecies have a principal respect to.

It was certainly thus with regard to the prophecies of the destruction of old Babylon, and the church's deliverance from captivity and oppression by that city and kingdom; which is abundantly alluded to in these prophecies of the Revelation, as a noted type of the oppression of the church of Christ by the church of Rome, calling the latter so often by the name of Babylon, and the church of Christ Jerusalem. The captivity of the Jews by the Babylonians was not perfected at once, but was brought on by several notable steps. So neither was the restoration of the Jewish church, after the captivity, perfected at once. It was several times foretold, that the duration of the captivity should be seventy years; and also, that after seventy years were accomplished, God would destroy Babylon, Jer. xxv. 11, 12, &c. But this period had manifestly several different beginnings, and several endings. Thus from Jehoiakim's captivity to Cyrus's decree, for the return of the Jews, and the rebuilding of Jerusalem, was seventy years. And from Zedekiah's captivity to Darius's decree, Ezra vi., seventy years. And from the last carrying away of all, Jer. lii. 30, to the finishing and dedication of the temple, was also seventy years. So also the prophecies of Babylon's destruction were fulfilled by several steps. These prophecies seem to have a principal respect to that destruction that was accomplished by Cyrus, at the end of the first seventy years forementioned: but there were other things in the very same prophecies, that were not fulfilled until the 4th year of Darius; when what remained of Babylon was subject to another dreadful destruction; which in a great measure completed its desolation; which was at the end of the second seventy years, and at the same time that the restoration of the Jews. was perfected by the decree of Darius. But yet, there were many other things contained in the same prophecies of Babylon's destruction, rendering it thenceforward perfectly and perpetually desolate, and the haunt of serpents and wild Preface of his Paraphrase, &c., p. 13, 14, and 16.

+ Prideaux's Connection, Part I. p. 183, 184, and 267, 268, 269. Edit. 9, and p. 271, and 272.

beasts, that were not fulfilled until more than two hundred years after, in the time of Seleucus king of Syria. So also it was with respect to the prophecies of the destruction of Tyre, in the 26th, 27th and 28th chapters of Ezekiel; from which many of the expressions used in the Revelation, concerning the destruction of the kingdom of Antichrist, are taken, and which is evidently made use of in Scripture as a type of the latter. These prophecies of the destruction of Tyre were fulfilled by various steps. Many things were fulfilled in the destruction of the old city by Nebuchadnezzar ;† and yet other parts of the same prophecy were fulfilled by Alexander; which was about two hundred and forty years afterwards. And yet both these desolations are prophesied of

under one.

And thus it seems to me very probable, that it will prove, with respect to the prophecies of the destruction of mystical Babylon. It is I think pretty manifest by the prophecies, that this Antichristian hierarchy and apostate church will at last be so destroyed, that there shall be no remainders of it left, and shall have as perfect a desolation, before God has done with her, as old Babylon had; there shall be no such thing as Pope or church of Rome in the world. It seems also pretty manifest that after that event that is chiefly intended in the prophecies of Antichrist's destruction, there will be some remains of the Romish church. This appears by that most particular and large description of that destruction, Rev. xviii. There it seems to be implied, not only that many shall yet remain of the church of Rome, that shall bewail her overthrow, of her people and clergy, ver. 11, 15, 17, 18, but that there should be some princes among them, kings of the earth, that have committed fornication, and lived deliciously with her, ver. 9, 10. And it is exceeding improbable in itself, that every Papist, in each quarter of the world, should be destroyed, or cease from the world, at one blow. And as long as so considerable a number remains, as may be gathered from the prophecy, they will doubtless have a hierarchy; and there will be one among them that will bear the name of a Pope. Although the church of Rome shall be mainly destroyed, and the interest of Popery shall be sunk very low in the world; so that there will yet remain such a thing as a Papal church and hierarchy in the world, to be wholly extirpated at another period, some time after that great overthrow principally insisted on in the prophecies. And this second destruction of Antichrist, or rather extirpation of his remains together with the complete extirpation of all the remains of Mahometanism, Heathenism and Heresy through the world, and the finishing stroke towards the overthrow of Satan's visible kingdom on earth, and so the beginning of the Millennium or spiritual rest of the world, may, for aught I know, be about the time Mr. Lowman speaks of; agreeable to the opinion of the ancient Jews, and many Christian divines that have followed them, that the world would stand six thousand years; and then, the seventh thousand years should be the world's rest or Sabbath. The ruin of the Popish interest is but a small part of what is requisite, in order to introduce and settle such a state of things, as the world is represented as being in, in that Millennium that is described, Rev. xx., wherein Satan's visible kingdom is everywhere totally extirpated, and a perfect end put to all heresies, delusions and false religions whatsoever, through the whole earth, and Satan thenceforward deceives the nations no more, and has no place any where but in hell. This is the Sabbatism of the world; when all shall be in a holy rest, when the wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and there shall be nothing to hurt or offend, and there shall be abundance of peace, and the earth shall be Prideaux's Connection, Part I. p. 808-812. + Ibid. p. 128, 129, 130. Ibid. p. 693. ◊ See Rev. xviii. 21-23, and xix. 20, 21. Dan. vii. 26, 27.

full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the seas, and God's people shall dwell in quiet resting places. There is not the least reason to think, I that all this will be brought to pass as it were at one stroke, or that from the present lamentable state of things, there should be brought about and completed the destruction of the church of Rome, the entire extirpation of all infidelity, heresies, superstitions and schisms, through all Christendom, and the conversion of all the Jews, and the full enlightening and conversion of all Mahometan and Heathen nations, through the whole earth, on every side of the globe, and from the north to the south pole, and the full settlement of all in the pure Christian faith and order, all as it were in the issue of one battle, and by means of the victory of the church in one great conflict with her enemies. This would contradict many things in Scripture, which represent this great event to be brought to pass by a gradual progress of religion; as leaven that gradually spreads, until it has diffused itself through the whole lump; and a plant of mustard, which from a very small seed, gradually becomes a great tree, Matt. xiii. 31, 32, 33, and like seed which a man casts into the ground, that springs and grows up, night and day; and first brings forth the blade, then the ear, then the full corn in the ear. And especially would this contradict the prophetical representation in Ezek. xlvii., where the progress of religion is represented by the gradual increase of the waters of the sanctuary; being first a small spring issuing out from under the threshold of the temple; and then, after they had run a thousand cubits, being up to the ankles; and at the end of another thousand cubits, up to the knees; and at the end of another thousand, up to the loins; and afterwards a great river, that could not be passed over; and being finally brought into the sea, and healing the waters even of the vast ocean.

If the Spirit of God should be immediately poured out, and that great work of God's power and grace should now begin, which in its progress and issue should complete this glorious effect; there must be an amazing and unparalleled progress of the work and manifestation of divine power to bring so much to pass by the year two thousand. Would it not be a great thing to be accomplished in one half century, that religion, in the power and purity of it, should so prevail, as to gain the conquest over all those many things that stand in opposition to it among Protestants, and gain the upper hand through the Protestant world? And if in another, it should go on so to prevail, as to get the victory over all the opposition and strength of the kingdom of Antichrist, so as to gain the ascendant in that which is now the Popish world? And if in a third half century, it should prevail and subdue the greater part of the Mahometan world, and bring in the Jewish nation, in all their dispersions? And then in the next whole century, the whole heathen world should be enlightened and converted to the Christian faith, throughout all parts of Africa, Asia, America and Terra Australis, and be thoroughly settled in Christian faith and order, without any remainders of their old delusions and superstitions, and this attended with an utter extirpation of the remnant of the church of Rome, and all the relies of Mahometanism, heresy, schism and enthusiasm, and a suppression of all remains of open vice and immorality, and every sort of visible enemy to true religion, through the whole earth, and bring to an end all the unhappy commotions, tumults, and calamities occasioned by such great changes, and all things so adjusted and settled through the world, that the world thenceforward should enjoy a holy rest or sabbatism?

I have thus distinguished what belongs to a bringing of the world from its present state, to the happy state of the Millennium, the better to give a view of the greatness of the work; and not, that I pretend so much as to conjecture,

that things will be accomplished just in this order. The whole work is not the less great and wonderful, to be accomplished in such a space of time, in whatever order the different parts of it succeed each other. They that think that what has been mentioned would not be swift progress, yea amazingly swift, do not consider how great the work is, and the vast and innumerable obstacles that are in the way. It was a wonderful thing, when the Christian religion, after Christ's ascension, so prevailed, as to get the ascendant in the Roman empire in about three hundred years; but that was nothing to this.

ANS. 4. There are, as I apprehend, good reasons to hope, that that work of God's Spirit will begin in a little time, which, in the progress of it, will overthrow the kingdom of Antichrist, and in its issue destroy Satan's visible kingdom on earth.

The prophecy of the sixth vial, Rev. xvi. 12—16, if we take it in its connection with the other vials, and consider those providential events, by which the preceding vials have manifestly been fulfilled, I humbly conceive affords just ground for such a hope.

It is very plain from this whole chapter, as also the preceding and following, that all these seven vials are vials of God's wrath on Antichrist; one is not poured out on the Jews, another on the Turks, another on Pagans, another on the church of Rome; but they all signify God's successive judgments or plagues on the beast and his kingdom, which is in this chapter and almost everywhere in this book, called great Babylon. And therefore undoubtedly, when it is said, the sixth angel poured out his vial on the river Euphrates, and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared; by the river Euphrates is meant something some way appertaining to this mystical Babylon; as that river that ran through Chaldea, called Euphrates, was something appertaining to the literal Babylon. And it is very manifest, that here is in the prophecy of this vial an allusion to that by which the way was prepared for the destruction of Babylon by Cyrus; which was by turning the channel of the river Euphrates, which ran through the midst of the city, whereby the way of the kings of the east, the princes of Media and Persia, was prepared to come in under the walls of the city, at each end, where the waters used to run, and destroy it; as they did that night wherein Daniel interpreted the handwriting on the wall, against Belshazzar, Dan. v. 20. The prophecies of Babylon's destruction, do from time to time take notice of this way of destroying her, by drying up the waters of the river Euphrates, to prepare the way for her enemies: Isa. xliv. 27, 28, That saith to the deep, be dry, and I will dry up thy rivers; that saith of Cyrus, he is my servant, and shall perform all my pleasure. Jer. li. 31, 32, One post shall run to meet another, to show the king of Babylon that his city is taken at one end, and that the passages are stopped, and the reeds they have burnt with fire, and the men of war are affrighted. And verse 36, I will dry up her sea, and make her springs dry. The Medes and Persians, the people that destroyed Babylon, dwelt to the eastward of Babylon, and are spoken of as coming from the east to her destruction, Isa. xlvi. 11. Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel, from a far country. And the princes that joined with this ravenous bird from the east, in this affair of destroying Babylon, are called kings, Jer. li. 11: The Lord hath raised up the spirit of the kings of the Medes; for his device is against Babylon to destroy it. Ver. 28, Prepare against her the nations with the kings of the Medes, the captains thereof, and the rulers thereof.-The drying the channel of the river Euphrates, to prepare the way for these kings and captains of the east, to enter into that city under its high walls, was the last thing

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