« הקודםהמשך »
satisfaction to the judicious*. The meaning of a prophecy of this kind can only be made manifest by the event which is to fulfil it. Before that time shall arrive, it is unsafe to conjecture after what method it shall be fulfilled; whether, as some prophecies literally, or as others, typically; whether the departed Saints and Martyrs shall actually be raised again in their own persons, to effect so glorious a change in Religion and morals; or, whether, like Elijah in the person of John Baptist, and David in that of Christ, they shall live again in the persons of other saints, who shall fulfill their characters and offices, no man may presume to determine. It is best therefore, after the example of the wise father Irenæus, respecting another prophecy, to “ wait the completion of the prediction f.” Yet, if we are not permitted to descend to a special interpretation, we may receive advantage from a general view. We may confidently indulge a well-grounded expectation, that happy times, of long duration, are yet destined
Augustine, in Civ. Dei, Lib. xx. c. 7, commenting on this chapter, says, that the doctrine of a Millenniuni, in which the saints were to enjoy a corporeal resurrection in this world, was founded on a notion tbat, after six thousand years of trouble, the saints should enjoy one thousand
years of sabbath, or rest. But the doctrine was founded on this passage of the Revelation. The notion of the time only, in which the prophecy will be fulfilled, was taken from this tradition of the Church. From Papias, a good man, but weak and credulous, seem to have been derived those earthly notions of a Millennium, branded with the name of Chiliasm, which were adopted by some eminent writers of the ancient Church; by Irenæus, Apollinaris, Tertullian, Victorinus, Lactantius, &c. But there was another, and much inore debasing, no'tion of a Millennium, entertained in those early times, in which, gross, sensual, corrupting delights were supposed to make the felicity of the Saints. This seems to have been derived from Cerinthus, and thence to have passed on to other heretics. Euseb. Hist. Eccl. lib. iii, c. 28. + Iren. lib. v. 30.
for the Christian Church, ezen here upon earth. For the days will come, and seem at no very great distance, (the present century may perhaps disclose them,) wben, the beast and false prophet being removed, and Babylon sunk for ever, the devil, that ancient foe, shall be deprived of his wonted influence; and the prophecies, which in the Old Testament, as well as in the book of Revelation, promise happy times, shall be accomplished".
An abstracted view of the sentiments of the Ancients on this difficult, and as yet obscure subject, may be seen in Bishop Newton's Dissertations, vol. iii. 329–343. 8v0; and of the Moderns, in Lowman's Paraphrase and notes on Rev. p. 242—24$. Some ingenious and usefol bints are suggested in Mr. Kett's last volume on Prophecy. And a comprehensive, learned, and very judicious view of the whole subject may be read in Mr. Gray's Discourse on Rer. XX. 4, 5, 6. It is remarkable that Dr. Whitby, who had declined to comment on the Apocalypse, assigning as his motive, that he felt himself unqualified for such a work, has ventured to explain this particular prediction of the Millennium; which being, as all agree. a prophecy yet unfulfilled, is, of all others, the most difficult. Yet his Treatise on the true Millennium may be perused with advantage. But, as it plainly appears that no one, who lived before the completion of the prophecies of the Seals, the Trumpet, or the Ilarlot of Babylon, however learned and sagacious, was able to penetrate through the veil of these mysteries; nor was any progress made in assorting these prophecies, until the historical events fulsilling them appeared; so, to the events alone are we to look with confiderce for the complete illustration of these predictions. We can at present collect froin them with safety, only general notions and assudances. Such however are sufficient to support our faith, if not to gra. tif our curiosity,
Ch. xx. 7-10.]
IPSL. (Pt. VII. $ + in here upon earth. For
at no very great distance, safas disclose them,) wlen, Cig removed, and Dalia
thout ancient for, shali be ince; and the prophecies as well as in the book of 1. C's, sliall be acconpiske
Satan loosed, deceiveth the nations, and is cast into
the burning lake.
CUAP. XX. VER. 710,
's of the Ancients on this dis* RL ile Bishop Ventun's Dis. iulie Modisus, in Loxman's - 35. Some ingenious and useEspine on Propherr. Anda
$6x® of the wbule subject II. Rer. xx. 4, 5, 0. It is se! .*?!0 coumert on the poo
relius qualified for such to dar prediction of the Mil
"I Fet unfultilled, is, of all #anta true Millennium may : pienis -ppears that no one,
* puties of the Seals, the ve: learted and sq'scious, was
Do'steties; nor was any proCitie historical creuts ful5-18 are we to look with confi
ex pre dictions. We can at Cor general notions and assu
it our fastb, if lot to gra.
Kzi ötzv Tilegb7 And when the thou 7 And when the thou. τα χίλια έτη, λυ sand years shall be sand years are expired, θήσεται ο σατανάς
completed, satan shall Satan shall be loosed εκ της φυλακής αυ
be loosed from his 8 out of his prison, And B F# Kui igraatorile 8 prison: And he shall
out to deceive πλανήσαι τα έθνη
come forth to deceive the nations which are τα εν ταις τέσσαςthe nations which are
in the four quarters of ci yvinis tus yñs, in the four corners of
the earth, Gog and τον Γων και τον the earth, the Gog,
Magog, to gather them Mxray, on z tiv and the Magog, to ga
together to battle: the αυτες εις τσόλεμον, ther them together 10
number of whom is as ών 5 αριθμός αυτών
the sand of the sea. battle, the number of Ws n dumos añs far
whom is as the sand of ! 9 And they went up on 9 λάσσης. Και ανέ.
the breadth of the 9 the sea.
And they 6ησαν επί το πλά
earth, and compassed went up on the extent Tas rūs gæs, xri of the earth, and sur
the camp of the saints έκύκλωσαν την παrounded the camp of
about, and the beloved ξεμβολής των αγίων, ,
city; and fire came και την πόλιν την the saints, even the
down from God out of ηγαπημένην beloved city. And fire
heaven, and devoured uzlien tip ato tä came down from God
10 them. And the devil Ose ix to opzvs, out of heaven, and de
that deceived them, και κατέφαγεν αυτής. . 10voured them. And the
was cast into the lake 10 Και ο διάβολος και devil, who deceiveth
of fire and brimstone, wharwy ajtós, so them, was cast into the
where the beast and the βλήθη εις την λίμ. lake of fire and brim
false prophet are, and Μην τα πυρός και stone; where were like.
shall be tormented dry θεία, όπε και το wise the wild-beast and
and night for ever and θηρίον και ο ψευδο the false prophet: and
ever. προφήτης και βασα
they shall be torment
After the grand period of the Millennium, so favourable to the Christian cause, shall have come to its end, another apostacy shall unhappily take place. This is expressed figuratively, by satan being again loosed, to deceive the nations. This new rebellion against the laws of God, and against the casy yoke of the Redeemer, is of formidable extent. The four corners of the earth, (that is, the nations of the whole earth) * are engaged in it. It is an apostacy of a new kind; different at least from the former apostacy, in which the beast and false prophet were satan's instruments of mischief. Beyond this we have little ground of conjecture. The enemies of the Christian Church, numerous as the sands upon the sea-shore, surround the camp of the Saints, which is represented as in a state of siege. But the extinction of these enemies shall be sudden, miraculous, and complete. They shall be destroyed by fire, by fire from heaven, that is, miraculously, and utterly f.
This description is conformable to other ancient prophecies, still remaining to be fulfilled; or which have received only a partial and typical completion. Such are Isaiah Ixiii. lxvi. Jocl iii. Ezek. xxxviii, and xxxix; which is the last prophecy in the book I, and is said expressly to be of the latter days. Gog and Magog will be found to signify the nations; those which were
* See note, ch. iv. 6.
+ See note, ch. xvii. 12. Excepting the exhibition of the temple, which, being a subject entire of itself, was reckoned by the Jews as an additional book. See Joseph. Ant. Jud. lib. x. c. 6.
most distant, and yet hostile to the Church *. On alt these prophecies, evidently not yet fulfilled, little can be conjectured with safety. They are to be handed down to the Church of the latter days, even as those prophecies, which we have seen fulfilled, have been delivered to us; and with this consolation, that this "overflowing of iniquity,” whenever it arrives, shall be miraculously and completely terminated t. And this is the last successful effort of satan against the Church. He is then consigned to his eternal prison.
• See Mede's Works, p. 280; Abp. Newcome on Ezekiel xxxviii. 2; also Lowth on the same passage.
+ So Ezek, xxxix. 6. Isaiah xlvii. 13, 14 ; xxxiii. 14.
SEQ TI ON VI.
CHAP. XX. VER. 11-to the end.
11 Kai ridoy Spávox λευκόν μέγαν, και τον καθήμενον επ' αυτέ, και από προσώπα έφυγεν η γη και και έρανός και τόπος έχ ευρέθη αυτοίς. . 12 Και είδον τες νε
• κρές, μικρές και μεγάλες, εσώτας ενώπιον τ8 Θεέ, και βιβλία ηγεύχθησαν και βιβλίον άλλο ήνεώχθη, ό εςι της
11 And I
11 And I saw a great white throne, and bim white throne, and him who sate thereon, from that sat on it, from before whose presence whose face the earth the earth and the lea and the heaven fled ven fled away, and away, and there was
there was found no found no place for 12 place for them. And 12 them. And I saw the
I saw the dead, small dead, small and great, and great, standing stand before God; and before the throne; and
the books were openbooks were opened. ed: and another book And another book was was opened, which is opened, which is of
the book of life: and the