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and therefore deny the Father: also, The Lord Jesus Christ is omnipresent; he walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks, and holdeth the seven siars ir his right hand ; and therefore can have no ricar in his church. You acknowledge the Pope us Jesus Christ's vicar, and as acting by his authority in his absence, and therefore deny the Son......... The papal body is manifestly the beast of antichrist; for he thus, in an implicit way, denies the truth concerning the Father and the Son. See John xiv. 23. "If a man love me, he will keep
my words, and my Father will love him, and
we will come unto him, and make our ABODE “ with him.” Mr. Faber supposes that the Protestants ought not to have denounced the Pope, &c. as the beast, unless he had denied the Father and the Son explicilly; but in that case, they would have made, indeed, an egregious mistake; for the papal body had then been no more than our old enemy, the dragon, and with no propriety could be styled beast.
These writers are very confident, that they are not influenced in their views by national politics; but with the blaze of protestant interpretations before their eyes, could they have been so blind to the spirit of prophecy, had they not squinted at the late forlorn confederacies of the British nation with the papisis; the hopes of which are calculated upon the strength of their worst prejudices, and darkest superstitions? The style of the publications to which I allude, is of a nature truly alarmning. O Protestants beware! Is this the time to run into, or to climb the roof of the house of the Philistine gods! Sampson, indeed, has lo his eyes, and appears to be leaning faint upon the pillars; but, hah! the house is falling. “ Lo here, or lo there.” One sees a star in the east, others see stars in the north, and in the south, and in thic west; but, mark it, they are
all blazing stars, and will shortly disappear; and their observers will gaze after them, till their
eyes consume away in their holes,” for “the " kingdom of God cometh not with observation.”
According to the principles of the Divine Theory, which are constantly to be kept in view, the gospel church is triune, and will appear under three distinct characters. And it will be observed, that the enemy_asgumes his several forms in order to oppose the church as it
progresses “ from strength to strength,” in “ the knowledge of the Son of God;" and comes to“ the measure of the stature of the fulness of “ Christ.” Thus, in Revelation, we have the character, first, of a child-bearing woman, and queen-mother, taking refuge in the wilderness; secondly, of a man-child, who was to rule the nations with a rod of iron, and who is caught up unto God, and to his throne; and, thirdly, of the remnant of the woman's seed, who, for a long time, sustain the dreadful conflict with the enemy, and at length obtain the final victory. Our Lord alludes to this three-fold state of the church in his parable, Mark iv. 26. “ And he said, So ~ is the KINGDOM OF GOD, as if a man should cast “ seed into the ground, And should sleep, and "rise night and day, and the seed should
spring " and grow up, he knoweth not how: For the " carth bringeth forth fruit of herself; First, the
BLADE, then the Ear, after that the FULL CORN " IN THE EAR.”. The sanae view of the gospel church is particularly given by the inspired writers of the ancient scriptures: “Who is she * that looketh forth as the morning, FAIR AS THE
MOON, CLEAR AS THE SUN, and TERRIBLE AS AN AR“ MY WITH BANNERS. Cant. vi. 10. Again, ver. 4. « Thou are BEAUTIFUL, O my love, as TIRZAH,
COMELY AS JERUSALEM, TERRIBLE AS AN ARMY fants WITH BANNERS.
This form of the church, though three-fold, is not, however, like that of the enemy, dissembled and complexed; but it is simply the form of one perfect body, composed of intire and harmonious parts, which can admit of no jarring or discord among themselves; and whịch bears the fairest empress of the glory of the Triune God; whereas the parts composing the antichristian body are discordant as the language of Babel, and cannot fail to produce among themselves, the most horrible conflicts.
An attentive reader of the prophecies respecting the struggles of the church against the antichristian body, will observe that they are represented, interchangeably, by the operations of an army in the field; and by the processes of a court of judgment. This view is very helpful to gain a clear understanding of the nature of the several distinct grounds taken by the parties in the conflict. Our Lord said, *« For judg“ment I came into the world.” Again,“ I came “not to send peace but a sword.” The work of judgment consists of three distinct parts; first, Opening the law ; secondly, establishing the witness ; thirdly, execution of the convict. Hence, in the first instance, the enemy denies the authority of the law; this is the Dragon. In the second place, he admits the law; but challenges the truth of the witnesses against him, that he is an enemy; this is the Beast; but at last, when convicted both by lar: and evidence, he will assume the attitude of dispair; set the law, and the witnesses, and the sheriff, all at defjance; and make a sturdy effort to save himself from the “ fiery indignation” that awaits him.
These processes of judgment, or operations of warfare, are given in Revelation, under various striking emblems; of which the leading ones are the seals, the trumpets, and the vials, which will be taken for the heads of our observations upon these interesting scenes.
SECTION II...... Opening of the Seals..
THE first process. against the enemy, accord ing to this Theory, is the opening of the Book of the kingdom, the contents of which are summed up in the name, Christ the Lord; which name, as has been shewn, is the Law of the King. dom of Heaven. The work, therefore, of opening this Book, is inerely that of making known the Name of the Lord; and is expressed in one word, which is the name given to the Book, i. l. Revelalion; or, as it is written out in the introduction, « The Revelation of Jesus Christ.”
John, being “ In the Isle of Patmos for the “ Word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus “ Christ;" was." on the Lord's day,” introduced “ in the Spirit” to “the Church of the first-born “ which are written in heaven.” After looking round upon that august and adorable assembly, he fixed his eyes upon the book held " in the “ right hand of him that sat on the throne,” which book was sealed with seven seals, importing the precious nature of the things contained therein, and that they “are fathful and true;" also, that they are far out of the reach of natural eyes, and that the greatest possible difficulties attend their disclosure; which cannot be made but through a series.of successive almighty operations.
And he “ saw a strong angel proclaiming with “ a loud voicc, Who is worthy to open the Book, “ and to loose the seals thereof? And no man “ in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the « earth, was able to open the Book, neither to “ look thereon.And he wept much; but one “ said unto him, Weep not, behold the Lion of « the tribe of Judah, the root of David, hath "prevailed to open the Book, and to loose the
seven seals thereof." If any man had been able to open the Gospel Book, John himself had been the man; for no one, perhaps, not even in heaven, knew more concerning Jesus Christ than did that beloved disciple; but he felt his own utler insufficiency, Paul, who was also an apostle, had before feelingly exclaimed, “Who is sufficient " for these things.” The obstacles in the way of this manifestation of God, will appear great indeed, when we consider that it required that the Lord Jesus Christ should die upon the cross to remove them, Nothing short of this could have rent the vail of the temple, darkened the face of the sun, and spoiled principalities and powers. Isaiah, contemplating this subject, cried unto the Lord, saying, “Oh that thou wouldest “ rent the heavens, that thou wouldest come "down, that the mountains may flow down at “thy presence, As when the melting fire burn
eth, the fire that causeth the waters of the ocean to boil, to make THY NAME KNOWN.?
“ I saw,” said John, “when the Lamb open« ed one of the seals;' and behold, a white horse; “ and he that sat on him had a bow, and a crown was given unto him, and he went forth con
quering, and to conquer.” This imports the promulgation of the gospel word. The preaching of the gospel, though but a part of the work of making known the name of the Lord, is yet, in the nature of things, the leading part.