Imágenes de páginas

is this the only reason: the character of the prince is totally inapplicable to any real sovereign of ancient Tyre. He is represented as having been once a faithful worshipper, and as having afterwards apostatized; as having been in the holy mountain and paradise of God, or the true church of upright believers; as having once been perfect in his ways; and as having at length defiled his sanctuaries by the multitude of his iniquities and the iniquity of his traffic, or, in other words, as having debased his originally pure worship of God by some iniquitous dealings which the prophet compares to a fraudulent and base trade. In all this we can perceive no resemblance to the character of the ancient Tyrian sovereigns. Whatever notions of the true God Hiram might have learned by his intercourse with Solomon, his kingdom by the universal consent of history was idolatrous from the very first * ; and, whatever worship Hiram might pay to Jehovah, we have little reason to doubt that he mingled it with the worship of his national deities. But, let this be as it may, it is of very little moment to the present question; for the overthrow of Tyre and its prince, being (as I have already observed) manifestly connected with the restoration of Israel t which is yet future, cannot possibly relate to the overthrow of the literal Tyre either by Nebuchadnezzar or Alexander which

+ See Chap. xxvii.

* See Herod. Hist. L. ij. C. 44. Ver. 23, 24.


is long since past. If then it cannot relate to the overthrow of the literal Tyre and its prince, it must relate to the overthrow of some power and some posu, tentate at the era of the restoration of Israel, cons sidered by the prophet as antitypical to ancient Tyre and its prince.

Here therefore the question is, What power and what prince, at the time of the end, cạn we reasonably suppose to be intended in this typical prediction, to which Ezekiel, after the manner of the ancient prophets *, glides as it were insensibly from his literal prediction respecting the overthrow of Tyre by Nebuchadnezzar ?"

The first idea, that will probably strike the reader, is, that the antitypical Tyre must be the great maritime and commercial nation, so frequently pointed out, either more or less directly, as taking a very active part in the troubles of the last ages, and. in the first restoration of the Jewish part of the Israelitish people: more especially since, if this

+ Similar instances of double prophecy occur in Isaiah xiii. xiv. 1-27. and Zephaniah ii. 13—15. iji. This last prediction will be discussed hereafter in its proper place. Mr. Lowth, when treating of Isaiah x. 20, very justly observes, that “it is “ usual with the prophets, when they foretell some extraordi“ nary event in or near their own times, to carry their views on « farther, and point at some greater deliverance which God “ shall vouchsafe to his people in the latter ages of the world." Much the same remark is made by Bp. Hurd. “ The style of " the prophet sq adapts itself to this double prospect, as to “ paint the near and subordinate event in terms that empha, “ tically represent the distant and more considerable."


maritime power itself be no where else precisely styled Tyre, its navy is undoubtedly typified by the Tyrian ships of Tarshish *.

This idea, however probable at the first sight, is certainly erroneous. The antitypical Tyre is to be utterly destroyed at the era of the restoration: the great maritime power is not then to be destroyed, but is to be successfully engaged in accomplishing that very restoration. The antitypical Tyre is plainly described as a persecutor, as the principal persecutor, of the Jews; for, when it is overthrown, then the rankling and ulcerating thorn shall cease for ever to afflict the children of Israel: the great maritime power is employed in the honourable office of carrying God's message to his people; of taking them under the shadow of its wings; and of bringing their sons from far, not spoiled, but their gold and silver with them, in a navy that securely bids defiance to all the opposition of their enemies t. The antitypical Tyre is some state or empire, that once professed pure religion, but at the era of the restoratiou had notoriously apostatized from it: the great maritime power is plainly a nation of faithful worshippers, as sufficiently appears from the prophecies respecting it that have been already considered. Finally, Daniel and St. John gives us jointly a very full list of all the states and superstitions that are to

* Isaiah 1x. 9,

+ Sce Isaiah xviii. and lx. 8, 9.

be be overthrown together at the close of the 1260 years, which Daniel assures us is likewise the era of the incipient restoration of Judah and Israel. These are the ten-horned beast under its last head, or the papal Roman empire under the line of the Carlovingian princes ; its little horn, which is the same as the second apocalyptic beast and false prophet, or the spiritual empire of the Papacy; the infidel king, or Antichristian France, now identified with the last head of the Roman beast; the kings of the earth, or the vassal sovereigns of the Latin empire; and the little horn of the hegoat, or the false religion of Mohammed*. Now

· among * One great branch of Mohammedism, the Turkish empire, will be overthrown under the sixth apocalyptic vial, and therefore previous to the destruction of the Antichristian confederacy, which will take place under the screnth: and, as for the religion of Mohammed itself, I cannot find any positive declaration that the professors of it will, in a national capacity, join the armies of the infidel king. Daniel speaks of it, as being, at the time of the end, broken without hand, (Dan. viii. 17, 25.) This expression is ambiguous : and may either mean, that it shall be (as it were) practically confuted and silenced by the manifestation of Christ, against whom Mohammed had presumed to stand up (Compare Dan. ii. 34, 35, 44, 45.); or it may mean, that it shall gradually fall away to nothing by the desertion of its votaries, and thus die a sort of natural death. The exhaustion of the mystic Euphrates will no doubt greatly weaken it: and it is a remarkable circumstance, even in these eventful times, that a sect has lately made its appearance in the very country of the false Arabian prophet, which threatens no less than the destruction of his religion itself. The Wahalces are infidels; and

among all these we find not a single power, that at all answers to the character of the great ma


their numbers are daily increasing. Their opinions have been propagated near sixty years ; and they at length find themselves strong enough to take up arms in their defence. It is said, that they occupy the greatest part of the country, which extends from Medina to the Euphrates. Their last exploit, of which we have recently received an account, shews their decided hostility, to Mohammedism in a very striking point of view. Having rein, forced their army from the desert, and haviog overwhelmed the whole adjacent country, they suddenly assaulted and took the çity of Medina with infinite bloodshed and devastation. They set' fire to it in various places ; destroyed the masqueş, after having ransacked them of their valuable shrines and treasures; and completely demolished the tomb of the prophet. Some thousands of females of the first rank were carried off by the besiegers into the desert, with a number of the principal male inhabitants. A troop of camels was also sent away with jewels and other treasure to an immense amount. Sựe Morning Post, Feb. 22, 1806

The following account of the Wahabees is given in a very curious work recently published by Mr. Waring.

" The founder of this religion, Ubdool Wuhab, was a native “ of Ujunu, a town in the province of Ool Urud. Some have ! been of opinion, that Moola Moohummud, the son of Ubdool " Wuhab, was the first person who promulgated doctrines sub“ versive of the Mụssulman faith. However this may be, it is “ certain that one or other of these persons was the founder of “ the religion of the Wuhabees; and the name inclines me to “ believe Ubdool Wuhab. Bọth these persons were great tra“ vellers. They studied under the principal Mohammedan " doctors at Bussora and at Bagdad; and afterwards went to “ Damascus, where Ubdool Wuhab first began to avow his re ".. ligious principles. The priests were alarmed at the tendency

or of

« AnteriorContinuar »