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“The Scriptures, and the ancient and uniform practice of the church in baptism, clearly show that infants are freed from the sway of the devil when they are exorcised, and promise through those who bear them to renounce him."1

IX. On similar false principles a system of external discipline of dishonor and deprivation, was employed to correct and restore those penitent members of the church, who had either fallen into great sins, or even violated the most unreasonable canons. Instead of higher instruction, and more authoritative and affectionate appeals, they were debarred from the renewal of their vows and the celebration of the death of Christ, excluded from the station of communicants, driven to the vestibule or area of the house of worship, and systematically deprived, often for a long series of years,

of the


aids that were most needed to convince them of their sins, recall them to penitence, and confirm them in faith and love. Those of the excommunicated, though for the most trivial and unjustifiable causes, who did not seek a reconciliation with the church and submit to the prescribed penance, were rendered infamous, and debarred the rights of citizenship and of humanity.

X. A course of reserve and concealment was systematically pursued with the young. Instruction in the higher truths of Christianity, especially those indicated by the sacraments, was deliberately withheld from all candidates for baptism and confirmation." Thus they whose office it was to teach the gospel, by neglecting and suppressing the truth, by substituting philosophy in its place, and by inculcating false views of the nature and means of sanctification, verified in a terrible manner the prophecy, and reduced the church to a destitution of the means of spiritual life, analogous to the dearth of bread produced by oppressive exactions in the empire.

· Circumstipantur enim et divinarum auctoritate lectionum, et antiquitus tradito et retento firmo ecclesiæ ritu in baptismate parvulorum ubi apertissime demonstrantur infantes, et cum exorcizantur et cum ei se per eos, à quibus gestantur, renuntiare respondent, à diaboli dominatione liberari. Augt. Epist. 194, c. 43. See also Concil. Carthag. c. 7. Labbei Concil. tom. iii. p. 952.

: Mosheim, Hist. Church, cont. iii., part ii., c. iv., s. 1.

3 “ The place of weeping, where the offender should stand and ask the prayers of believers as they enter, is without the door of the oratory. The place of hearing, within the door in the porch, where the sinner should stand as long as the catechu. men, and go out then, for having heard the Scriptures and the discourse, let them be excluded as unfit to be present at the prayer. The place of prostration is such, that he who is stationed within the gate of the temple may go out with the catechumen. The place of the assembly such, that he who belongs to it may stand with the believing, and not go out with the catechumen. And finally, there is the place of participating the sacraments." Gregorii Thaum., c. xi.; Labbei Concil. tom. i., p. 1030.

* Pulsent sane fores, sed non utiquo confringant. Adeant ad limen ecclesiæ, sed non utique transiliant. Cypriani Epist. xxx., c. 7. By the council of Eliberis, those who left the Catholic church and joined a sect were, if they returued, debarred from communion and subjected to penance ten years; other offenders seven years, five, and shorter periods; and such as were guilty of sacrificing, manslaughter, and infanticide, were forever debarred from readmission. Labbei Concil., tom. pp. 5-9.

Origen compared the gradual initiation of the catechumen to the progress of the

Expositors have universally, so far as I am aware, formed a different judgment of this symbol; most of them regarding the horseman as an emblem of famine itself, occasioned by ordinary causes, not one who induces a scarcity by wrongfully usurping the means of subsistence, and obstructing and discouraging their culture.

Thus Grotius and Rosenmuller interpret the symbol of the general famine in the reign of Claudius, predicted by Agabus, Acts xi. 28; Dr. Hammond of one foreshown in Matthew xxiv. 7, which he referred to Judea anterior to the siege of Jerusalem ; Mr. Brightman and Mr. Daubuz, of a scarcity in the time of Septimius Severus; and Mr. Lowman of a dearth during the reign of the Antonines. But that, in whatever relation it is contemplated, is untenable. If the horseman be regarded as a personification of famine, or famine as a symbol, and in that character foreshowing a literal famine, as he can only be such by representation, he is treated as the symbol of a symbol, which is inadmissible. If he be regarded as merely symbolizing a famine, then he is made the symbol of a mere relation, which is against the law of analogy. The construction of Mr. Mede, Mr. Whiston, Mr. Jurieu, and Bishop Newton, who exhibit the symbol as foreshowing a period

Israelites from Egypt to Canaan. “When having left the darkness of idolatry you desire to approach and hear the divine law, you leave Egypt. When you are enrclled among the catechumen, and begin to conform to the ecclesiastical rules, you advance to the Red Sea, and gain a station in the desert, where you hear the voice of God and daily behold the glorified countenance of Moses. But if you approach the mystical fount of baptism, and standing with the Levitical order are initiated into the venerated and august sacraments, which they know to whom the knowledge is lauful, then having passed Jordan by the ministry of the priests you enter the land of promise, where Joshua succeeding to Moses receives you and becomes your leader during the remainder of the journey.” Homil. iv. in lib. Jesu Nave, c. i.,

Athanasius says, “ It is becoming, as it is written, to conceal the beautiful mystery of the King. And the Lord commands, 'cast not holy things to the dogs nor pearls before swine,' for it is not lawful to celebrate the mysteries before the uninitiated, lest the idolatrous who are ignorant should laugh, or the catechumen hurried on too rapidly should be scandalized.” Apol. ad Imp., tom. i., p. 731. Seo also Concil. Laod. can. xix. ; Labbei Concil., tom. ii., p. 567; Casauboni Exercit. xvi. in Baron., p. 478; Pagi Crit. in Baron. anno 118.

P. 405.

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of just and severe government in the Roman empire, and refer it to the reign of Septimius Severus, is open to the same objection. If the horseman as a symbol be regarded as justice, he can only be such by representation, which is absurd. If he be regarded as merely symbolizing the exercise of justice, he is then made the symbol of a mere action or quality, which, as no resemblance whatever subsists between them, is incompatible with analogy. Moreover, if the horseman and his accompaniments be a mere symbol of justice, not of an agent exercising justice, how does it appear but that its whole office as a symbol is fulfilled in that representation ? On what ground can it be assumed that the justice thus represented, is itself likewise a symbol, and foreshows something else? If, on the other hand, such a second symbolization be allowed, what clue is there to its nature? What does justice symbolize? What proof is there that that which it foreshows may not likewise be a mere representation of some subsequent agent, event, or characteristic? Where is the succession to terminate ? How is the interpreter to ascertain when he has reached the agent or event which it is the final design of the vision to symbolize?

Cocceius exhibits the rider as a symbol of avaricious and aspiring bishops prostituting their office to worldly ends, and the voice from the living creatures as the voice of the church demanding from them the service they are bound to yield, and prohibiting them from obstructing the truth. But to make the living creatures symbols of the church on earth, is to make the throne and him who sat on it symbols also of a throne and monarch in the church on earth, and thence to exhibit the worship offered him as idolatry, which is impossible. Mr. Elliott regards the horseman as a Roman procurator, intrusted with the collection of revenue and produce from the provinces, and the voice from the midst of the living creatures, as denoting the laws of that office prohibiting injustice, and assigning the values of property, and interprets the symbol of oppressive taxation under Caracalla and his successors.

But that is founded on the assumption that the representative agent and agency are of the same species as the agent and action symbolized, and is in violation therefore of analogy.

Vitringa regarded the horseman and his accompaniments as an emblem of a slight scarcity of corn exciting the apprehension of a greater, and a public decree in regard to its price; but alleged as its fulfilment the dissensions and contests of the church on the one hand exciting the fear of spiritual famine, and the

remedial and preventive doctrinal decrees of the councils respecting them on the other. But what relation is there between a slight famine of corn and a superabundance of dissensions and ecclesiastical canons, except it be of dissimilarity; or on what ground can an emblem of one effect be regarded as symbolizing the cause and remedies of another effect ;- -a scarcity of provisions the cause and the cure of a spiritual famine, than which no two things are more devoid of resemblance ?

Dean Woodhouse regards the color of the horse as denoting darkness, the balance, or yoke, as he renders it, as an emblem of slavery, the price of wheat and barley as symbolizing a scarcity, and interprets thein of the extreme ignorance, the burdensome rites, and the gross superstitions on the one hand, and the dearth of practical religion on the other, which marked especially the middle, and in a large degree, several of the earlier ages. But that is obnoxious likewise to insuperable objections. He founds his reference of the symbol to those events, not on the ground of analogy, but on the assumption that all the prophecies of the Apocalypse are to be taken as relating to the church, except when on his views of the rules of construction, the symbols or language render that application impossible ; which is to interpret them not by the laws of symbolization, but by a mistaken conjecture. He overlooks the consideration that the horseman is the representative agent, his accompaniments merely significant of his office and agency, and that the law of symbolization requires that he should be interpreted as representing a resembling order of agents that give birth to an analogous class of events; and instead, exhibits the whole symbol as denoting effects merely, not agents producing them; and the several parts of the symbol as denoting different species of effects, as ignorance, bondage, and a dearth, which is equally against analogy.




And when he opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, Come. And I looked, and lo, a pale horse, and he who sat on him, his name was Death ; and the



od with him. And power was given to him over a fourth part of the earth, to kill with the sword, and with famine, and with death, and by the wild beasts of the earth.

The agencies of the preceding horsemen

were employed chiefly in varying the condition of the living. The office of this is to kill, not merely to lessen the enjoyments of life, or lay a foundation for its destruction, and his name is for that reason Death. This character is indicated also by the cadaverous color of the horse and by his attendant the grave, which hades undoubtedly denotes. It were indeed more terrible to conceive of it as a yawning passage to the realms of the lost, following death's footsteps, and disclosing to the spectators the myriad spirits of those killed by him descending to that world, but analogy forbids it. Of what world is hades the symbol, if it be taken as the invisible dwelling of the lost?

No delineation is given of the figure of the horseman. He was doubtless, however, a human form, as it is said not that he was death itself, but that his name was death,-a destroyer. The pestilence is his peculiar instrument of destruction ; to kill by death in contradistinction from the sword, being to kill by a natural disease, instead of violence. He uses other weapons also, power being given him over a fourth part of the earth to kill with the sword, and with famine, and by the wild beasts of the earth, as well as with death. Of these instruments, the first is that of the armed competitors for the throne of the second seal, who take peace from the earth and kill one another; the second that of the oppressors of the third seal, who by excessive exactions reduce their subjects to poverty and famine. Death, the third, is a pestilential element breathed from his own lips into the atmosphere tainting the vitals of whoever inhales it. These he himself directly wields. The fourth are agents who act at his bidding, the dragon exhibited in subsequent visions as standing before the woman, and the wild beasts emerging from the sea and the earth and exercising a tyrannical sway over their respective territories.

This symbol is taken also doubtless like the former from the empire, and at a period when there were several acknowledged emperors or Cæsars who contended with each other for larger or exclusive authority, who reduced their subjects to famine by oppression, whose reigns were marked by pestilences, and who destroyed their subjects also by wild beasts. And such a period was the reign of Diocletian and his immediate successors.


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