페이지 이미지
PDF
ePub

Apoc. xii. 14

Apoc. xi. 9.11.

signify any, duration between 34 and 34 years. Thus also three days and an halt may contain any period between 31 and 31 days. And so in all other cases whatsoever. But without particular evidence they ought not to be extended any farther. And it is to be obsery'd that tho' the Computations in this Efay do not always take express notice of this Latitude; yet that it may and ought to

be allow'd and understood upon all occasions. VII. Wherever any general word is us’d indefi

nitely, without a particular note of distinction; there the most eminent and remarkable of that kind is to be in reason understood by it. Thus Tò reíto tñs vñs, the third part of the Earth, is to be understood of the most eminent and remarkable third part which can be fuppos’d. Thus also Time, Times, and a division or part of time, i. e. three years, and a division or part of a year, must signify three years and a month, because the most eminent and remarkable division, or part of a year, is a Month; as the most eminent and remarkable division, or part of a month with us, is a week; and of a week, a day; and of a day, an hour; and so in all other cases proportionably.

Apoc. viij. 7.

Dao.vij. 25.

LEM

tichrist, p. 322.

LEMMATA, or PREPARATORY PROPOSITIONS.

I.
A Day; in those Prophecies both of Daniel and vid

. Ci. Mori St. John, which concern Christianity, the Times Op. Theolog. of the Messias, and the Church of the Gentiles, lig- and Mr. Girnifies a Tear : and by consequence seven Days, or a ret's Discourse Week, fignifies seven Tears: and thirty Days, or a

concerning AnMonth, thirty Tears : and so in other cases: and

-348. this through the whole Series of their Prophecies. The Arguments for this Proposition are these

following: I. 'Twas not at all agreeable to the Nature and Genius of these Enigmatical Writings to make use of plain Words in the determination of its several Periods: and so to use the known word a Tear standing for it self, without any cover or character. Histories indeed, being plain and literal Representations of past Events and Actions; and being intended for the Undere standing of all Men immediately, must use that and the like words in their strict and obvious meaning: and such Predicti. ons also as were much of the fame nature, and were deliver'd in plain and clear Words, ought in the same manner to obferve the decorum throughout, and to determin their Periods in the common Phrase and Language of Mankind. But as in Mythological and Parabolical Narrations we do not expect that eve. ry Phrafe should be Historical and Obvious; fo neither can we expect that the Duration of the several Periods in Prophecies Hieroglyphical, Obscure, and Mystical, should be determin'd by the same common Measure of Time, which was made use of in the before-mention'd plain and clear Predictions. When God said in clear and express Words, that the Jews should serve the King of Babylox 70 Years; and that after 70 Years they Jer.xxv.11,12. should be restor'd to their own Land again : I do not seek any & xxix. 10. other than a literal sense of the word Years, because all the other words, as Babylon, and Judah, and Captivity, and the rest, are

taken

[ocr errors]

taken in their ordinary Acceptation, without any Mystery or

Allegory at all. But when I find Times and Laws given into Dan.211.24,25. the hands of a Little Hurn for a time, and times, and a division of

time; or for somewhat above three Years; I consider that the time, times, and a division of time, or three years, and a part of another, may as well be Enigmatical, as the Horn is certainly so: And therefore I do not immediately conclude, that all the Tyranny of that Impious Dominion, signify'd by the Little Horn, is confin'd to a bare space of between three and four Years : but search farther what is the Mystical signification of

a Time or Tear in this Mystical Prophecy So when I find Apoc. 1x.5,10. Locufts tormenting Men five Months : I enquire what the Inter

pretaton of five Months is in Prophetick stylc, as well as what is the Interpretation of Locusts; and do not immediately conclude that so great a Noise is made about a Calamity of less than

half a Year's continuance: and so of the rest. See furieu, part

11. 'Twas not at all consistent with the Design of God in 1. C.25:

these Prophecies, to make every thing evident and unquestionable by plain and express words. For tho' the Jewish Prophecies, which were generally to be fulfill'd by Heathens, who regarded them not, might and were plain and explicit; yet the Christian Prophecies being to be fulfillid by those that believ'd them, they ought not to be fo: For as the Principal of them determio'd the Time for the Death of the Messiah; fo the rest generally determin the Times of Antichrist, to be set up in the Church of Christ. Now if God had said hy Daniel, that immediately after 483 Chaldean Years, from the zoth of Artaxerxes Longimanus the Meffias should be Cut off ; Can we imagin that the Jews would ever have Crucify'd Jefus of Nazareth at that very time? And if God had said by St. John that 3 60 Ycars after his seeing the Visions of the Apocalypse, ten Antichristian Kingdoms should arise, and domineer in his Church for 1260 Years together; can we once suppose it possible that the Church should have submitted to them? No certainly; If these Prophecies had all been plain and explicit, and a Year, the common Measure of Time, had been everywhere us'd to determin the several Periods, in its common signification, they had plainly hindred their own Completion;

and

[ocr errors]

ز

and, without a fatal Determination of humane Actions, must have prevented all those Events which they foretold thould come to pass : as 'tis very easy for every one to discern on a fmall Confideration.

III. And since the Nature and Genius of the Prophetick Style, as well as the Design of the Almighty in revealing these things, did require that a Year, the most usual and stated Measure of Time, should not be express’d by it felf, but by some other; It is evident from not a few Reafops and Teitimonies in the rest of the Scripture, that a Day is of all other the most fit and proper for it; nay, is certainly and frequently made use of therein to represent it on other occasions ; as I have elsewhere New Theory prov'd.

But, not to insist on the other Texts, at present I p. 81, ecc. Ihall only instance in two of the most remarkable, and such as seem directly to guide us to the true Prophetick importance of that word, and lo of those derived from it. Your Children, Numb.xiv.3}, says God to the Disobedient Ifraelites, small wander in the Wil. 34. derness forrygears; after the uumber of the days in which ye searched the Land, even forry days, each day for a year, shall you bear your iniquities,, even forty years. And still more fully and expressly to our prefent purpose in that Eminent Historical Prophecy of Ezekiel: Lye thou, says God to him, on thy left side, Ezek.iv. 4,906. and lay the iniquity of the house of Ifrael

. upon it: according to the number of the days that thou shalt lye upon it, thou shalt bear their iniquiry. For I have laid upon thee the years of their iniquity, according to the number of the days, three hundred and ninety days ; so falt thou bear the iniquity of the house of Israel. And when thou haft accomplis’d them, lye again on thy right side, and thou falt bear the iniquity of the house of Indah forty days: I have

: a a yeara for a year.

IV. This appears by such Prophecies of Daniel as have their Periods determin'd by days, or words equivalent thereto, or de: riv'd fromit. Because it may easily be prov'd, that not one of them were fulfill'd in that literal and ordinary acceptation for bare days: Whereas it will hereafter appear, that in the other Prophetick signification for years, all that are expir'd have already been fulfill'd:;, and so there can be no reason to doubt of the fulfil

25, 32.

ling of the rest in their due seasons hereafter. Now since this Argument is of all others the most important in this matter ; and such as, if it can be well prov'd, determins the dispute; I shall more particularly inlift upon it. And in order to the more convincing Evidence, 'I shall examin all Daniel's Numbers in Order; and shew of every one in particular, that it was not fulfill'd according to thc Exposition of those who interpret days according to the letter of so many bare natural days only: and so shew the absolute necessity of recurring to that other Prophetick signification, of which we are now discour

sing. The first Text in Daniel, which determins a Period by Dan. vij. 25. a Collection or Number of Days, is that of the Little Horn,

growing up among Ten Horns; which should have Times and Dan, xij. 7.

Laws given into his band until a time and times, and a divisor

or part of time. Which words, Time and Times, both by the Dan. iv. 16,23, seven times that were to pass over Nebuchadnezzar ; which are

generally suppos'd to have been seven years: By a Parallel place Dan. xi. 13.

in the same Book, the King of the North fall certainly come at the End of Times, that is to say, Tears, as my Lord Bishop of Worcester well observes : for the Hebrew being not in regi

mine, but in apposition, cannot properly be otherwise rendred: Apoc.xij.6,14. and by St. John's Exposition of 'em in the Apocalypse, appear

to be three Chaldean Years, and a part of a Year. Now since this Number belongs to that remarkable Period of the Fourth, or Roman Monarchy, after the Rise of its ten Horns, or Division into ten Kingdoms ; ( which is known not to have been till the Fifth Century of Christianity ;) as the context will shew to any who consults it: And since it ends not till the conclusion of that Fourth or Roman Monarchy, and the commencing of our Saviour's glorious Kingdom upon its destructi. on; as is clear from the Angel's Exposition of it: We shall only need to count the Time since the Fifth Century, to know whether by thefe three years, and a part of another, i.e. as we fhall see hereafter three years and one month, so many bare years are intended or not. For 'tis but too plain, that the last State of the Roman Monarchy is not yet over; and that our Saviour's Kingdom of Righteousness and Peace is not yet set up in the World. Nay, if we should leave the clear and evident Sence

of

« 이전계속 »