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of which he will give us to drink, when God has wiped away all tears from our eyes, and placed us before his throne, where we shall serve him day and night in his temple, and see his face, and dwell with him, and have him for ever dwell with us, and in us. Amen.
The seven angels appear with their trumfiets, and four of them sound. Ch. vij.
ND when he (before described as the Laub) had opened the A seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. 2 And I saw the seven angels, which stood before God ; and seven 3 trumpets were given to them. And another angel representing the
great high-priest, came and stood before the altar, having a golden censer, and there was given to him much incense, that he might
present it with the prayers of all the saints, upon the golden altar 4 which was before the throne. And the smoke of the perfumes
went up with the prayers of the saints, from the hand of the angel, 5 before God. And the angel took the censer, and filled it with fire
ofthe brazen altar, and threw it upon the earth; and there were voi. 6 ces, and thunders, and lightnings, and an earthquake. And the
seven angels, who had the seven trumpets, prepared themselves, 7 that they might sound. And the first angel sounded; and there
was hail and fire, mingled with blood, and it was cast down upon the earth; and a third part of the trees was burnt up, and all the green grass was also burnt up. And the second angel sounded ;
and it was as if a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the 9 sea; and a third part of the sea became blood; and a third part of
the creatures which had life in the sea, died, and a third part of the 10 ships were destroyed. And the third angel sounded; and there
fell from heaven a great star, burning like a torch ; and it fell
upon a third part of the rivers, and upon the fountains of waters : 11 and the name of the star is called wormwood, and a third part of the
waters became impregnated with wormwood ; and many men died of
the waters, because they were become bitter. (Comp. Ex. vü. 12 20, 21.) And the fourth angel sounded; and the third part of the
sun was smitten, and the third part of the moon, and the third part of the stars, so that the third part of them was darkened, and the
day did not appear with respect to a third part, and the night also. 13 And I beheld, and heard one of the angels flying in the midst of
heaven, saying with a loud voice, Woe, woe, woe, to those that dwell upon the earth, for the remaining sounds of the trumpet of the three angels, which are yet to sound!
REFLECTIONS. While we prepare ourselves, with silent admiration, to attend the discoveries here opening upon us, let us rejoice in the symbolical representation of the intercession of Jesus, our great highpriest, shadowed forth in so beautiful and expressive a manner, by the angel standing at the altar with the golden censer, and much incense. Behold, how the prayers of all the saints ascend before God
with acceptance ! See the method we are to take, if we desire that ours should be acceptable to him ; and, encouraged by such a view, let us offer them up, not only with humility, but with cheerful confidence, though we are conscious of their great unworthiness.
To what wretchedness are they exposed, who oppress and injure thosc, that, through their great representative, have such an interest in the court of heaven. Thc hail and the fire shall, at the divine cominand, powerfully plead their cause ; the mountains shall be torn from their basis, and cast into the midst of the sca; the sun, the moon, and the stars shall be darkened in their orbs, and all nature be thrown into convulsive agonies, ere God will suffer them finally to be overborn, or fail to punish, with becoming severity, those who continue to persecute, or evil-entreat them. Let such awful representations as these, remind us of the sovereign almighty power of God, whom all the hosts of heaven worship with reverence, and at whose awful word, when he gives forth his voice, hailstones and coals of fire descend; at whose rebuke the pillars of heaven tremble, and the foundations of the carth are shaken ; who speaks to the sun, and it shineth not ; quho darkeneth the moon and scaleih un the stars. Who would not fear thee, O thou Kings of nations, so terrible in the judgments which thou executest on the earth? Deliver us, we entreat thee, from the multiplied and accumulated miseries of those who continue obstinately to oppose thec; and conduct us at length to thy heavenly presence, though it should be through days of darkness, and waters of bitterness, and seas of blood. Amen.
1 A ND the fifth angel sounded ; and I saw an angel like a s!1001a
ing star fallen from heaven to the carth, and there was given 2 to him the key of the bottomless pit. And he opened the bot.
tomless pit, and a smokc ascended from the pit, as the smoke of
a great furnacc ; and the sun and the air were darkened by the 3 smoke of the pit. And out of the smoke there came locusts upon
the earth; and power was given to them, as the scorpions of the 4 earth have power. And it was said to them, that they should not
injure the grass of the earth, nor any green thing, nor any tree; but only the men who had not the seal of God in their foreheads. 5 And it was given to them that they should not kill them, but that
they should be tormented five months (i. e. about 150 years).
And their torment wus like that of a scorpion when it striketh a man. 6 And in those days men shall seek death, and shall not find it; and 7 they shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them. And the
likeness of the locusts was like horses prepared for war; and on
their heads were, as it were, crowns like gold ; and their faces like 8 the faces of men : And they had tresses like the tresses of women ; y and their tecth were like the teeth of lions. And they had breast
plates like breast-plates of iron ; and the noise of their wings was like the noise of chariots, and many horses rushing to war. Vob, II.
10 And they had tails like scorpions, and their stings were in their
tails ; and their power was to hurt men five months, or about 150 Il years. And they had a king over them, the angel of the bottom
less pit, whose name is in the Hebrew language, ABADDON ;, and 12 in the Greek he hath the name of APOLLYON the desiroyer. One
woe is gone, and behold yet other two woes besides it, coming.13 And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four 14 horns of the golden altar which was before God, saying to the
sixth angel who had the trumpet, Loosen the four angels, which 15 are bound, by the great river Euphrates. And the four angels were
loosened, who were prepared for an hour, ard a day, and a month, 16 and a year*, that they might kill a third part of men. And the
number of the horsemen was two myriads of myriads, i.e. 1930
hundred millions. And I heard the number of them mentioned. 17 And I saw the i:orses, and those that sat upon them, thus in their
appearance ; having breast-plates of fire, and hyacinth, and brimstone : And the heads of the horses were like the heads of lions,
and out of their mouths went fire, and smoke, and brimstone. 18 By r these three things, viz. by the fire, and by the smoke, and
by the brimstone, that went out of their mouths, they slew a 19 third part of men. And their powers are in their mouths and in
their tails; and their tails are like serpents, having heads, and 20 with them they injure. Yet the remainder of men, who died not
by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands, that they might not worship demons, and idols of gold, and silver,
and brass, and stone, and wood; which can neither see, nor hear, 21 nor walk. And they repented not of their murders, and their
sorceries; nor their fornication, nor their thefts.
REFLECTIONS. It is exccedingly natural to reflect, while reading this representation, how exactly the mightiest princes, and most savage destroyers of mankind, execute the plan of divine providence, and fulfil the de. crees of God ; even while they are intending nothing but the grati. fication of their own ambition, and avarice, and cruelty. The angel of God holds the keys of the boltomless pit ; and it is by divine permission, that these voracious locusis issue forth and infest the earth. The ministers of God's pleasure, bind the messengers of destruction, and loosen them at the divine command. And the season wherein they shall ravage the world, is here limited to a year, to a day, to an hour : ABADDON, APOLLYON, the great and mighty destroyer, cannot effect the least of his mischievous and ruinous purposes, without the permission of the Preserver and Redeemer of mankind ; and cannot go beyond his limits. And even the mischief which he does, is intended and over-ruled to subserve the wisest and kindest designs. But O, how grievous it is to think of that degree of obstinacy and per. verseness which so generally prevails in the world, and which renders men so incorrigible, under the most painful chastisements Satan is permitted to inflict. Send forth, O Lord, the gentle influences of thy
* Perhaps, according to prophetic reckoning, about 391 years.
Spirit, and melt those hearts, which will not be broken by the weightiest strokes of thy vengeance; and deliver us from a temper, so much resembling that of hell, and so evidently leading down to those dreadful abodes; the temper of those, who are hardened by correction, and in the time of their affliction and misery, increase and multiply their transgressions against thee.
The vision of a mighty angel who held a little book, which John was com
munded to cat. Ch. X.
ND I saw another mighty angel descending from heaven, Al clothed with a cloud ; and a rainbow was about his head; 2 and his face was as the sun, and his feet like pillars of fire. And
he had in his hand a little book open; and he put his right foot 3 upon the sea, and the left upon the earth; and he cried with a
loud voice, as when a lion roareth: and when he had cried, the 4 seven thunders uttered their voices. And when the seven thun
ders had uttered their voices, I was about to have written what they uttered: and I heard a voice from heaven, saying unto me,
Seal up what the seven thunders have spoken, and write them 5 not. And the angel, which I saw standing on the sea, and on the 6 earth, lifted up his hand towards heaven : and sware by him wlio
liveth for ever and ever; who created the heaven, and those things which are in it; and the earth, and the things which are in it;
and the sea, and the things which are in it; that time should be 7 no longer : but in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, who
was about quickly to sound, the mystery of God, as he had re
vealed its glad-tidings to his servants the prophets, should be ful8 filled. And the voice which I heard from heaven, spake to me
again, and said, Go take the little book which is opened, out of
the hand of the angel, which standeth upon the sea and upon the 9 earth. And I went to the angel, and said to him, Give me the
little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it
shall imbitter thy belly, but in thy mouth it shall be as sweet as 10 honey. And I took the little book out of the hand of the angel,
and eat it up ; and in my mouth it was as sweet as honey, but 11 when I had eaten it, my belly was bitter. And he said to me,
Thou must again prophesy to many people, and nations, and tongues, and kings.
REFLECTIONS. If other parts of this chapter should seem to be less pregnant with important practical instructions, perhaps the design was, that we might be engaged to fix our entire and undivided attention on the awful words of this illustrious angel ; " hose appearance is described in colours so exceeding beautiful and striking; with the radiance of the sun streaming from his countenance : the variegated colours of the rainbow encircling his head ; of a stature so vast and majestic, that he at once bestrode the carth and the sea ; with his hand solemnly lified
up 10 heaven ; with a voice awful as thunder, appealing to the venerable name of God, the Creator of the heavens, of the earth, of the sea, and of all their various inhabitants, in order to add the sanction of an inviolable oath, to a declaration which in itself, from such a divine messenger, was worthy of absolute and entire credit; a declaration, that time should be no longer : which is a certain truth, in the most sub- . lime and interesting sense of which the words are capable. Time, as distinguished into days, and weeks, and months, and years, by the revolution of the heavenly luminaries, when the most resplendent of these are extinguished in their orbs, as they quickly will; when the sin shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood ; lime, shall then o be absorbed in an immeasurable eternity. And 0, what an eternity! An eternity, either of perfect and inconceivable felicity, or hopeless and remediless misery.
But, besides this general construction, there is an important sense in which the proclamation of this celestial herald shall be fulfilled, with regard to individuals ; that time shall be no longer ; the time of divine patience in waiting upon us ; the time in which we shall be continued under the sound of the gospel, and the offers of mercy, and the means of salvation ; the time in which we shall be conversant with these scenes of mortality, and with the persons who are here most familiar to us; at least in the present circumstances of their being. The period during which we are lo inhabit this earth, and enjoy our spiritual advantages, or our worldly possessions and pleasures, is confined within very narrow limits. The oath of this mighty angel is, perhaps, just ready to be accomplished, and time is closing, and eternity is opening upon us. O, that we may consider time and all its concerns, as very shortly to vanish, that our thoughts and our cares may be directed more and more to our own eternal interest, and to that of our fellow-creatures. The Judge is even at the door : let us endeavour therefore to be ready ; let us improve every transient moment to the purposes for which it was given us; and in these views of the brevity of time, and the importance of preparing for eternity, let us detest all the pleasures and allurements of sin ; for they will soon appear like the mysterious morsel of the apostle, bitter as wormwood in the belly, though with deceitful and fatal indulgence we may, for a few moments, have rolled them, like a sweet morsel, under our tongues ; vainly desiring to prolong those pleasures, which can serve only to add more keen and exquisite sensibility to our future pain.
The Angel commands John to nicasure the temple ; declares that the Gentiles
should tread down the outer court; that the two witnessę8 should be slain, and raised from the dead. The scventh trumpet sounds, and the triumphs of divine vengeance are celebrated. Ch. xi. 1-18.
1 AND there was given to me a reed, like a measuring rod : And
the angel stood by me, saying, Arise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and the space filled by those who wore % ship at it: but r the outer court of the temple throw out of the