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great day of God Almighty; or the destruction of Antichrist.
2. Let us note the subject of the fatal operation in the text: Leviathan, that piercing serpent, even Leviathan that crooked serpent, the dragon that is in the sea. For an account of Leviathan, see Job xli. This appellation is repeated in the text, to indicate most emphatically that the Power designed will be most terrible. The accumulation of names, and of the qualities of piercing and crooked, is a forcible expression of the. subtile, furious, potent, and terrible nature of this enemy of the Church at that day. Pharaoh of old was called the dragon, doubtless meaning the crocodile in the river of Egypt, because he cast the offspring of Israel into this river; and persecuted the people of God. * And the power in the text is called the dragon, because he is the antitype of which Pharaoh was the type; and will labor to destroy the people of God.
3. He lieth in the sea. This part of the symbol denotes the multitudes, and the tumultuous state of his subjects. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth, and of the sea; for the devil is come down unto you having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.f Among the events of that day, our Lord says; The sea and the waves roaring; men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth. The events of that day, the perplexity and distress of nations, are repeatedly predicted under this similitude. And in that day they shall roar against them like the roaring of the sea; and if one look unto the land, behold darkness and sorrow, and the light is darkness in the heavens thereof. The state of the nations will be like a sea in a tem
And those who look to the land, or where stability used to be found, and long to find it again, shall see nothing but sorrow: and darkness will be instead of light. Woe to the multitude of many people, who make a noise like the noise of the seas, and to'the rushing of nations, that make a rushing like the rushing of mighty waters. The nations shail rush, like the rushing of many waters.* This relates to the scenes of the last days. In the 46th Psalm, relative to the same pe. riod, we find the same similitude. Therefore will we not fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea. Though the waters 'thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. What fol. lows shows it to be a description of the battle of the great day of God: The Most High making desolation in the earth; making wars to cease to the ends of the world; breaking the bow, cutting the spear in sunder, and burning the chariot in the fire. And relative to the preparatory scenes, in the above verses, it is as though the speaker had said, Seeing God is our refuge, we will not fear, though the political earth be dissolved; and though the first nations, which have long stood like mountains, be thrown into the sea of revolution; though their inhabitants are tossed, like the ocean in a tempest; and the national establishments tremble with the swelling thereof.
Exod. i, 22; Psalm 1xxiv, 13; Isa. li, 9, and Ezek. xxix, 3. +Rev. xii, 12.
Luke xxi, 25.
In the Revelation, a great people, in a tumultuous or revolutionary state, are repeatedly symbolized by the sea.t
Thus we learn the true sense of the great Leviathan and dragon of the last days being described as lying in the sea. He lies in the sea of revolution and tu. mult. The ten toes of the image, Dan. ii, 41,-- are part of iron and part of clay. The empire of Antichrist will be partly strong and partly broken. The strength of the iron will strikingly appear.
Yet the mixture of the clay will also discover itself. Some vassal kingdom will revolt; or some great battle may be lost. And this mixture of strength and weakness will occasion a sea of tumult, a roaring among the nations.
4. This power is destroyed with dreadful ruin. It is with the sore, and great, and strong sword of the Most High. It is terrible to be slain with the sword of the Lord. But when the slaughter is with God's sore, and great, and strong sword, the terrible things may be expected, which are abundantly predicted of the destruction of Antichrist. *
* Isa. xvii, 12, 13. + See Chap. viii, 8, and xiii, 1, aod xri, 3, Dan, vii, 2, et alia.
*Any, who may wish to consult other prophetic passages, which are thought to relate to the battle of the great day, may turn to the following Scriptures. 2 Sam. xxiii, 6, 7; Psalm xxi, 8-12; and xxxvii, and cx; Isai. i, 24,-end, and ii, 10,-end; and xi, 4, and xiii, 6-11, and xxiv, and xxviii, 16–22, and xxxiv, 1-8, and xli, 10-16, and lix, 9,--end, and Ixii, 1–6; and other passages noted by Dr. Hopkins, in his Treatise on the Millennium, sec. iv.
Containing a Treatise on the Seven Apocalyptic Vials.
That the way may be prepared to note the prophecies relative to Antichrist, in some of the last of the vials, I shall endeavor to give an explanation of the whole of them.
We are informed, Rev. xv, 1; And I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvellous, seven angels having the seven last plagues; for in them is filled up the wrath of God. Verse 7; And one of the four beasts gave unto the seven angels seven golden vials full of the wrath of God, who loveth for ever and ever. Chap. xvi, 1; And I heard a great voice out of the temple, saying to the seven angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth.
The vial here mentioned is a plain cup, out of which to drink. (Brann from tiev, to drink.) We read, Psalm lxxv, 8. In the hand of the Lord there is a cup, and the wine is red; it is full of mixture; and he poureth out of the same; but the dregs thereof all the wicked of the earth shall wring them out and drink them. A cup is often used in sacred Writ, to signify a portion from God, either of blessing, or of judgment. *
The seven golden vials full of the wrath of God, poured out from heaven to earth, are symbols of a series of peculiar judgments, which were to be inflicted upon the most notorious enemies of God on earth. Each vial being poured out by an Angel, indicates that Angels are the ministers of Divine Providence, to inflict the judgments of heaven on the enemies of the Church. The apocalyptic vials are seven. The number seven is much used in the word of God; and especially in this mystical book. Here are the seven seals; the seven trum.
See Psalm xi, 6; Jer. xxv, 15, 17, 28; Ezek. xxiii, 32; Mark xiv, 36, and x, 38; Psalm cxvi, 13, and many others.
pets; the seven spirits of God; and the seven vials. There were to be seven signal scenes of judgment, probably in a kind of systematic connexion, which were to destroy the enemies of the Church, and to prepare
the way for her millennial glory. And these are the seven last plagues, in which is filled up the wrath of God, which is to finish the scene with the most notorious enemies of the cause of Christ. God had been inflicting judgments on his enemies, who had attacked his Church, for many ages under the Gospel. There were the seals of judgments upon Pagan Rome; four trumpets of judgments upon Christian Rome; and two woe-trumpets of judgments on more eastern nations, as well as on Rome, in the rise of Mohammedism, and of the Ottoman empire; or in the ravages of the Saracens, and of the Turks. But these were not God's last plagues; were not comprised in the vials. The vials were to be subsequent to them, and were to finish the scene of judgments preparatory to the Millennium. The Papal and Mohammedan enemies of the Church were to have an existence of 1260 years; and then they were to be destroyed. Accordingly, toward the close of the 1260 years, the direction is given from the temple in heaven to the seven Angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth.
It has been the opinion of some, that the seventh trumpet, or third woe, comprises all the vials. Whatever plausible things may be said in favor of this, I think there are unanswerable objections against it; and that the old scheme, of the outpouring of the vials from some time before the commencement of the third woe, must be found correct. For there can be no plausible pretence, that the third woe commenced, previously to the French Revolution. But the supposition, that the seven vials were at that period all future; that four or five of them were accomplished on the French nation, and some neighboring nations, in less than twenty years, according to the scheme of Mr. Faber; and that none of the preceding judgments, which had been reg. ularly bringing down the Papal hierarchy, for several centuries, were yet to be reckoned as any part of the