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If this calculation is correct, and I think no one can doubt it, then the seventy weeks was fulfilled to a day when our Savior suffered on the cross. Is not the seventy weeks fairly proved to have been fulfilled by years? And does not this prove that our vision and the 2300 days ought to be so reckoned ? Yes, if these seventy weeks are a part of the vision. Does not the angel say plainly, I have come to show thee; therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision ? Yes. Well, what can a man ask for more than plain positive testimony, and a cloud of circumstances agreeing with it?
But one thing still remains to be proved. When did the 2300 years begin? Did it begin with Nebuchadnezzar's dream? No. For if it had, it must have been fulfilled in the year A. D. 1697. Well, then, did it begin when the angel Gabriel came to instruct Daniel into the 70 weeks ? No, for if then, it would have been finished in the year A. D. 1762. Let us begin it where the angel told us, from the going forth of the decree to build the walls of Jerusalem in troublous times, 457 years before Christ; take 457 from 2300, and it will leave A. D. 1843; or take 70 weeks of years, being 490 years, from 2300 years, and it will leave 1810 after Christ's death. Add his life, (because we begin to reckon our time at his birth,) which is 33 years, and we come to the same A. D. 1843.
Now let us examine our subject, and see what we have learned by it thus far. And,
I. We learn that there are two abominations spoken of by Daniel. The first is the Pagan mode of worship, which was performed by the sacrificing,
beasts upon altars, similar to the Jewish rites, and by which means the nations around Jerusalem drew away many of the Jews into idolatry, and brought down the heavy judgments of God upon idolatrous Israel; and God permitted his people to be led into captivity, and persecuted by the very nations that they, the Jews, had been so fond of copying after in their mode of worship. Therefore were the sanctuary and place of worship at Jerusalem trodden down by Pagan worshippers; and the altars, erected by the command of God, and according to the pattern
and form which God had prescribed, were broken down, and more fashionable altars of the heathen erected in their room. Thus were the commands of God disobeyed, his laws perverted, his people enslaved, the sanctuary trodden down, and the temple polluted, until at last God took away the Jewish rites and ceremonies, instituted new forms, new laws, and set up the gospel kingdom in the world.
This, for a season, was kept pure from the worldly sanctuaries and policy of Satan. But Satan, an arch enemy, found his Pagan abominations could have but little or no effect to draw the followers of Christ into idolatry, for they believed the bloody rites and sacrifices had their fulfilment in Christ. Therefore, in order to carry the war into the Christian camp, he suffers the daily sacrifice abomination to be taken out of the way, and sets up Papacy, which is more congenial to the Christian mode of worship in its outside forms and ceremonies, but retaining all the hateful qualities of the former. He persuades them to erect images to some or all of the dear apostles; and even to Christ, and Mary, the Mother of God.” He then flatters them that the church is infallible. (Here was a strong cord by which he could punish all disputers.) He likewise gives them the keys of heaven, (or Peter, as they call it.) This will secure all authority. He then clothes them with power to make laws, and to dispense with those which God had made. This capped the climax. In this he would fasten many thousands who might protest against some of his more vile abominations ; yet habit and custom might secure them to a willing obedience to his laws, and to a total neglect of the laws of God. This was Satan's masterpiece; and, as Daniel says, “ he would think to change times and laws, and they should be given into his hand for a time, times, and a half; but they shall take away his dominion to consume and destroy it unto the end." Therefore, when this last abomination of desolation shall be taken away, then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.
II. We learn that the vision which Daniel saw was revealed at three separate times - 1st. In Nebuchad
nezzar's dream, which carried us down through four great kingdoms, until they should all be swept away like the chaff of the summer threshing-floor before the wind, and no place found for them, and the glorious and everlasting kingdom of Christ fill the whole earth. The next vision Daniel saw was similar to this; he saw four great beasts, representing four great kingdoms, as before; and he saw the fourth beast to be diverse from all the others, dreadful and terrible, and exceedingly strong ; he had great iron teeth, and nails of brass, which devoured, brake in pieces, and stamped the people of God and the whole earth under foot. This beast contained the two abominations which we have before spoken of; the last, under the figure of a little horn, he saw until all these thrones were cast down, till the little horn was destroyed, and his body given to the burning flame. Daniel saw until the Ancient of days did sit. The Son of Man came in the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days. He saw thousand thousands ministering unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him; the judgment was set, and the books were opened. He saw the dominion, and glory, and kingdom given to the Son of Man, and to the people of the saints of the Most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom. In the third vision, which Daniel has coupled with the former, by saying that it was after (or like) the one which appeared unto him at the first, he saw the three last kingdoms; gave a particular description of the two first, even naming them the Medes and Persians, and the Grecian. He then gives a short account of the little horn, (having given a more general view of the fourth kingdom in the other vision,) how he would cast down the host of heaven, and the stars, and stamp upon them; also that he would magnify himself against the Prince of the host, Jesus Christ, and cast down the place of his sanctuary, and practise and prosper, but shall be broken without hands, showing that the stone cut out without hand should break him to pieces. Daniel, then, in the 26th verse, couples the two visions, the one in the evening, 7th chapter, and the one in the morning, 8th chapter, and says, “The
vision of the evening and morning, which was told, is true.”
III. We learn that this vision is two thousand three hundred days long; that days are to be reckoned years
1st, By the command of God; 2d, By the example of Jacob; and 3d, By the fulfilment of the seventy weeks of this vision, at the crucifixion of the Messiah. We learn by the instruction of Gabriel that the seventy weeks were a part of the vision, and that Daniel was commanded to begin the seventy weeks at the going forth of the decree, to build the streets and walls of Jerusalem in troublous times; that this decree, given to Ezra, was exactly 490 years, to a day, before the crucifixion of Christ; and that there is no account, by Bible or any historian, that there was ever any other decree to build the streets or walls of Jerusalem. We think the proof is strong, that the vision of Daniel begins 457 years before Christ; take which from 2300, leaves 1843, after Christ, when the vision must be finished. But the objector may say, “Perhaps your vision does not begin with the seventy weeks.” Let me ask two or three questions. Does not the angel say to Daniel, ix. 23, “ Therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision”? “Yes.” Does not the angel then go on and give his instruction concerning the seventy weeks? “ Yes." Do you believe the Bible is true ? “ We do.” Then if the Bible is true, Daniel's 70 weeks are a part of the vision, and 490 years were accomplished when the Mesiah was cut off, and not for himself. Then 1810 years afterwards the vision is completed; and we now live about 1803 years after; of course it must have begun within seven years of that date. But it is very reasonable to suppose it began with the seventy weeks ; for the angel said it would establish the vision, that is, make it sure; for if the 70 weeks were exactly fulfilled at the death of Christ, then would the remainder be in 1810 years after, which would be fulfilled A. D. 1843, as we have before shown.
And now, my dear hearer, are you prepared for this great and important event? Are you ready for the judgment to set, and the books to be opened? Let this
subject sink deep into your hearts; let it follow you to your bed-chambers, to your fields, or your shops. Not one jot or tittle of the word of God shall fail. If he has spoken, it will come, however inconsistent it may look to us. Be admonished, then, and see to it that you are prepared. Compare the vision with the history of the kingdom, and where can you find a failure? Not one. Then, surely, here is evidence strong that the remainder will be accomplished in its time, and that time but seven years. Think, sinner, how good God is to give you notice, and prove it a thousand fold. Remember the old world; they thought Noah was a maniac; but the flood came, and they were reserved in chains of darkness unto the judgment of the great day. Remember the cities of the plain. Lot was unto them like one that mocked; but the same day God rained fire and brimstone upon them, and they are suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. Be warned, then; fly to the ark, Christ Jesus, before the door is shut; escape to the mountain of the house of the Lord before the Lord shall rise up to the prey, and you be driven away in your wickedness. Amen.