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government of the world, and having under it many confederated kingdoms wherein the strength thereof consisteth, should stir m the tyrants of the Roman Empire, to set themselves against it a all violent courses.
XII. 4 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of here and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the ai man which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as sous as it was born. And the issue of this tyrannical persecution, raised by Satan, pa such, as that, by this means, very many, who were and might have been lights to others, were miscarried from their Christ profession, and drawn back to Pagan Idolatry: and these bloody persecutors, agents for the then Roman Empire, stood ready to watch for any that would or durst profess the Name of Christ; and, so soon as any man did but offer to stand out for the maintenance of the Christian Faith, were ready to seize upon him, and to proceed cru lly against him.
XII. 5 And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule a? nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne. But, in spite of all the malice and opposition of enemies, the Church brought forth, through the power of the Gospel, a masculine issue of true and faithful professors; in whom Christ was truly formed anew; even Christ Mystical, that Son of God who should rule over the nations, and in whose right his members partake of the same glory: and this blessed issue of hers was taken into the special protection of God, and in their several times glorified with bim.
XII. 6 And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days. And the Church, viz. the faithful professors of Christ's Name, be. I ing, after this, persecuted, were glad to retire themselves into deserts and solitary places; where the Providence of God had prepared maintenance and safe protection for them ; where they con tinued during the heat of that persecution.
XII. 7 And there was war in heaven : Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, And the Devil, the arch-enemy of man's salvation, raised up war against Christ and his Church; and there was a very great and sore conflict, betwixt Christ and his faithful servants on the one part, and Satan and his complices on the other,
XII. 8 And prevailed not: neither was their place found any more in heaven. But Satan, notwithstanding all his power and malice, prevailed not against the Church; neither was permitted to atchicve any thing against the salvation of God's elect.
XII. 9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old Serpent called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
And the Great Dragon, the Devil, and Satan, even that Old Serpent, which bore a deadly and perpetual enmity to Christ and his holy seed, and who is the great Deceiver and Tempter of the sons of men, was utterly defeated of all power to prevail against Goil's Church; and was put over, and limited to the exercise of his tyranny, upon those earthly and carnal men, whom he prevails over.
XII. 10 And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ : for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. And I heard a loud voice of Saints and Angels, triumphing in heaven, at this victory of Christ, and defeat of Satan, saying, Now, is salvation without all impeachment prepared for God's chosen ; and the strength and the kingdom of our God, and the power of Christ his Son, is enlarged: for Satan, who is the great Tempter and Accuser of God's children, urging their sins against them, and pleading for revenge of their misdeeds, and raising calumnies and slanders against them, before God and men, is foiled and dejected.
XII. 11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. And these elect children of God have overcome him; not by any power of their own, but by the blood of Christ, that Immaculate Lamb, applied to them by a lively Faith; and by the power of that mighty word of truth, which they have given their confession un. to; and by their resolute and patient suffering, and yielding up their lives to a most bitter death, for the maintenance of the Gospel.
XII. 12 Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. JVoe 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. Therefore rejoice, Oye Heavens, and ye blessed Angels and Saints that dwell therein, for this your happy victory in Christ your Redeemer. But, woe be to you, earthly and carnal-minded men, whose affections are wholly set upon worldly things! for, since Satan cannot have his will of God's faithful ones, he will be sure to tyrannize over you; and, for that purpose, is he labouring, in his extreme rage against mankind, to execute his wrath upon you; wherein he is so much the more eager and vehement, because he knows his kingdom draweth near to an end.
XII. 13 And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child. And, when this malicious Dragon saw, that he was defeated of his purposes, of hindering the salvation of God's Saints, he turned all his rage against the Church Militant on earth; raising up, by his wicked instruments, all manner of persecutions against her, who had brought forth that masculine issue of faithful professors.
XII. 14 And to the woman were given two wings of a great engine that she might flee into the wilderness, into her place, where she ! nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, froin the face o the serpent. But unto the Church were given, by the wise and gracious Pror. dence of the Almighty, many both forcible and speedy means her delivery; that she might retire and betake herself to a place more obscure safety; where he took order for her preservation as nourishment, during all the time of her persecution.
XII. 15 And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a fredo ter the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of ty flood. And the Serpent, when he saw that the speed of her rescue se such, as that he could not overtake and surprise her; he cast fority after her, whole foods of lies, slanders, and reproaches, by the mouths and pens of her blasphemous enemies; and broached store of erroneous and heretical doctrines, wherewith, if it were poosi. ble, he might draw her, either into detestation or apostasy.
XII, 16 And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out oi his mouth. But this attempt of his was also in vain; for the Providence of God so ordered it, as that all these false reproaches and attempts of isfection prevailed not, but ranished away, even as a flood of landwater is swallowed up of the earth, and is seen no more.
XII. 17 And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ. And the Devil was so much the more exasperated against the Church, for that he saw himself disappointed in all bis projects; and, therefore, he ceased not to stir up war against those children of the Church, which professed the truth of the Gospel, and endearoured to keep sincerely the commandments of God, and the only-true religion of Jesus Christ.
XIII. | And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. And I stood upon the shore of the island Patmos, and, behold, there was a further vision presented to me: for I saw out of tbe ambitious stirs and tumults of the world, there arose the great Roman Empire, in the form of a beast, by reason of the brutish con ditions of those that swayed it; whose chief seat was placed upon seven hills; and whose government was managed by seven several forms of sovereignty; and whose strength consisted in ten several kingdoms, which were under the command of that Empire; and divers profane and wicked governors of that Monarchy made profession of horrible blasphemies and impieties, in that they challenged to be stiled and adored as gods.
XIII, 2 And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and
is feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a on : and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great uthority. And the beast which I saw, representing the Roman Empire, was,
s it were, composed of the qualities of those other three former Monarchies which were past : for, in fierceness and speed of con
quest, it was like the Leopard of the Greek Monarchy; and, for cavening, like the Persian Bear; and, for haughtiness and cruelty, like to the Babylonian Lion: and the Devil did, by all means, set forward the power and authority of this Empire; advancing it by frauds and cruelties, that it might serve for his own purposes.
XIII. 3 And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast. And I saw one of his heads wounded deadly, in the cutting off of the Cæsar's line in Nero; and in the intercision of the Empire, for some tinie by the Huns, and Goths, and Vandals: but this wound was soon healed up; and the flourishing condition of that Empire was such, as all the world wondered at it, and were glad to do their homage and fealty to it.
XIII. 4 And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him? And men were so besotted with the admiration thereof, that they were ready to adore those hellish powers, by whose means and furtherance this Empire was so advanced; and to doat upon the honour and greatness of this, which they called a sacred and perpetual Monarchy; saying, What Empire was ever so great and large as this, and what nation or kingdom is able to stand out against it?
XIII. 5 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months. And Satan bad so prevailed with divers of these Cæsars, that, in the pride of their heart, they spake horrible blasphemies against God; proclaiming their own deity, and calling for adoration from the people; and, through the permission of God, power was given unto this Empire, to prevail and execute tyranny and cruelty for the space of a thousand, two hundred, and sixty years. · XIII. 6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven. And these proud and atheous governors opened their mouths against God, to blaspheme his Name, and to arrogate bis title to themselves; as also to slander and traduce his Church, raising wicked calumniations against his saints and servants.
XIII. 7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them : and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations. And, beside their blasphemies, they were permitted, in the just judgment of God, to raise cruel persecutions against those that professed the Name of Christ, and to put them to death; power was yielded to them universally, in all kingdoes ao tries, under their dominion. XIII. 8 And all that duell upon the eart ska
i whose names are not written in the book of life of the la: from the foundation of the world. And all that dwell upon the earth, under the Roman és shall be forced to burn incense to their Caesars, and to mi them as gods; even all they, whom God hath not, bs besos favour, decreed and designed to eternal life, from eternity, chased by the death of bis Son Jesus Christ.
XIII. 9 If any man have an ear, let him hear. If God hare given to any man an understanding beart anda iz ing ear, let him well consider of these great and mystical these wbich are spoken of this Empire.
XIII. 10 He that leadeth into captivity shall go into con he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the stort. Ha. the patience and the faith of the saints For, as this Roman Empire shall long tyrappize over the car and lead many thousands into captivity; so itself shall be des with, at the last; and, as it hath been guilty of much innotes bloodshed; so it shall accordingly be served again, and shall rish by the sword of an enemy: but, in the mean time, there much patience required of God's Saints; and much faith, to 33pect and attend the accomplishment of these things, which ma though late, yet, in their just time, be fulfilled.
XIII. 11 And I beheld another beast coming up out of the estih. and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. And, besides this Secular, I beheld a Spiritual Tyranny ; arising from small and weak beginnings, to a great height of pride and impietr; the semblance and outward shew whereof was meek and lamb-like, as tending to the advancement of the Name of Carst; but the doctrine, and practice, of it was proud and cruel. ..
XIII. 12 And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. And he taketh upon him to exercise all imperial power; making indeed but a mere shadow of the Empire: yet outwardly pretends to draw all the earth to the subjection and obedience of that Monarchy, whose deadly wound was healed. See verse 3.
XIII. 13 And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men: And this Spiritual Tyranny doth advance itself continually, by boasting of great miracles, that are daily done by the abettors thereof: so that, as Elijah, in his time, by calling down fire from heaven, did approve the truth of his doctrine and mission from God; so doth this tyrannical state go about to justify their teaching and usurpation, by strange and wonderful miracles:
XIII. 14 And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth, by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the