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the air, of which satan, as Mede observes, has been denominated the prince". Antichristianity, therefore, is now attacked in her strongest holds, and in every part. The discharge of this Vial is accompanied by a voice from the throne in heaven, proclaiming by the emphatical expression, Teyovs, the final completion, the perfect victory. Throughout the whole of this prophetical book, expectation is fixed upon this great event; which however, for reasons above assigned, is not yet exhibited in all its particulars. But the earthquake so dreadful, and unparalleled f; the removal of mountains and of islands ti the hail S; afford the same kind of general display of the tremendous judgments of an offended God, as we have seen exhibited under the sixth Seal, and the seventh Trumpet. All three appear to predict the same period and events, and in like language. Any variation to be observed in each, may be sufficiently accounted for, by adverting to the object, which each had more especially in view. For instance; (1.) the sixth Seal, containing the first opening of this dreadful scenery, would properly present it in a general style of imagery, such as had been already seen in other parts of prophetic Scripture|, such as might serve as a basis, whereon to build the additional information, which would more fitly come forward in the subsequent parts of the prophecy T. (2.) When the same period, attended by the
* Eph. ii. 2. + See notes, ch. vi. 12, &c.
I See note, ch. vi. 14. § See note, ch. viii. 7.
| See note, ch. vi. 16.
" The sixth Seal seems also to extend to the final Day of Judgment and retribution, at the consummation of the world; which the seventh Trumpet and Vial perhaps do not. This, like other prophecies, may have a primary and secondary completion; the first, so far as it agrees and cotemporizes with the seventh Trumpet and Vial; the last, at the latest period of time.
same kind of scenery, was to be exhibited under the seventh Trumpet; joy, triumph, and thanksgiving, would naturally predominate in the description: for, the preceding Trumpets, which had announced a long and mournful warfare to the Church, were now come to their end; but in the back-ground of the scenery, the same dreadful apparatus, which appeared under the sixth Seal, is still displayed: “lightnings and voices, “ and thunders, and earthquake, and great hail.” And it is observable, that these commotions proceed from the Temple, and Throne in Heaven; from the very same quarter, whence the angels had brought the Vials filled with the wrath of God; and from which, at the pouring out of the last Vial, the emphatic Teyove likewise had proceeded. (3.) Under the seventh Vial, the same kind of apparatus appears, as under the sixth Seal and under the seventh Trumpet; but with this additional information; that “the great city became divided into three “ parts, and the cities of the nations fell; and the great “Babylon was remembered before God, to give her “the cup of the wine of the fury of his anger.” This particular description is the proper subject of the Vials; in which the wrath of God is represented as poured out on his enemies. The great city is the same which we find mentioned in ch. xi. composed of X “many people, tribes, nations, and languages";” and seems to be the universal assemblage, or combined power, of the wicked and worldly, who at the instigation of satan, and under the expectation of earthly reward, or fear of the beast, shall have set themselves in opposition to the God of Heaven, and to the reign of his
* See note, ch. xi. 8, 13.
Anointed. The division of this community into three parts, must be explained by the event, when the prophecy shall be fulfilled. The cities of the nations may perhaps be associations for worship, pagan and idolatrous, beyond the pale of the great city, of the corrupt Christian-antichristian Church. All such are to fall at this time, before the great Lord and Conqueror, “whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all “dominions shall serve and obey Him".” But of all the cities, or communities of Religion, which are opposed to the city of God and of Christ,--to the heavenly Jerusalem, the great Babylon is especially remembered. For her, (the harlot, the adulteress, the apostate Church,) the cup of God's anger, the vial of his wrath, is especially prepared. “For it is not an open cnemy “that hath done me this dishonour; for then I could “have borne it;-but it was even thou, my companion, “my guide, and my own familiar friend f.” The description therefore of this city, of her domination, and of her fall, is related ; and becomes the especial subject of the two ensuing chapters; where we shall be enabled to unveil her, and to expose her abominations.
* Dan. vii. 27. + Psalm lw. 12, 14.
The great Harlot, or Babylon.
S E C T I O N III.
CIHAPTE R xvii.
1 And there came one of
the seven angels who had the seven vials, and spake with me, saying; “Come hither; “I will shew thee the “judgement of the “great harlot, who “sitteth upon the “many waters; With “whom the kings of “ the earth have com“mitted fornication; “and the inhabitants “of the earth have “ been made drunken “with the wine of her “fornication.” And he carried me away into a wilderness in the Spirit. And I saw a woman seated upon a scarlet-coloured wildbeast, which was full of names of blasphemy; having seven heads and ten horns. And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and richly ad
1 And there came one of
the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither, I will shew unto thee the judgement of the great whore, that sitteth upon many waters: With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabiters of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication. So he carried me away in the Spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarletcoloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads, and ten horns. And the woman was arrayed in purple, and scarlet-colour, and decked with gold, and precious stone, and pearls,
having a golden cup in her hand, full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication. And upon her forehead was a name written, MystERY, BABYLoN THE GREAT, Tii E MOTH ER OF HARLOTS, AND A BoM INATIONS OF THE EARTH. And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great adAnd the angel said unto me, Where'ore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns. The beast that thou sawest, was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition:
orned with gold, and precious stone, and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand, full of abominations and the impurities of her fornication; And upon her forehead a name written, A mystery, Tiis GREAT BABYLoN Th E MOTHER of HARLoTs, AND of Tii E ABOM INATIONS OF Th E. EART II And I
saw the woman drunk
en with the blood of
the Saints, and with the blood of the witAnd I wondered, beholding
nesses of Jesus.
her, with great astoAnd the angel said unto me, “Wherefore dost thou “wonder 2 I will tell “thee the mystery of “ the woman, and of “him that carrieth “her, which hath the “seven heads and the “ten horns. The wild“beast which thou be
“holdest, was, and is “not, and is about to “ascend from the bot“tomless deep, and to “go into destruction. “And the inhabitants “ of the earth shall “wonder, (they whose “names are not written
they that dwell on the
earth shall wonder (whose names were not written in the
book of life from the foundation of the world) when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and