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and his angels fought against the dragon, arid the dragon fought and his angels; ,

8 And prevailed not, neither was their place found any more in heaven.

9 Arid 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.

i o And I heard a loud voice, saying in heaven, Nowis come falvation, 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.

11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimonyand they loved not their lives unto the death. . ,

12 Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabited 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. .

It might reasonably be presumed, that all the powers of idolatry would be strenuously ex2 erted Crted against the establishment of Christianity, and especially against the establimment of a Christian on the imperial throne: and these struggles and contentions between the Heathen and the Christian religions are represented (ver. 7.) by war in heaven between the angels of darkness and angels of light. Michael was (Dan. X. 21. XII. 1.) the tutelar angel and protector of the Jewish church. He performs here the fame office of champion for the Christian church. He and the good angels, who are sent forth (Hebr. I. 14.) to minister to the heirs of fahation, were the invisible agents on one side, as the devil and his evil angels were on the other. The visible actors in the cause os Christianity were the believing emperors and ministers of the word, the martyrs and confessors; and in support of idolatry were the persecuting emperors and heathen magistrates together with the whole train of priests and sophists. This contest lasted several years, and the ljnal issue of it was (ver. 8, 9.) that the Christian prevailed over the heathen religion; the Heathens were deposed from all rule and authority, and the Christians were advanced to dominion and empire in their stead. Our Saviour said upon his disciples easting devils put of the bodies of men, (Luke X. 1.8.) JT beheld Satan, as lightning, falljrom heaven, ..' - P» In

In the same figure Satan fell from heaven, andt was cast out into the earth, when he was thrust out of the imperial throne, and his angels were cajl out with him, not only all the heathen priests and officers civil and military were cashiered, but their very gods and demons, who before were adored for their divinity, became the subjects of contempt and execration. It is very remarkable, that Constantine himself and the Christians of his time describe his conquests under the fame image, as if they had understood that this prophecy had received its accomplishment in him. Constantine himself, (6) in his epistje to Eufebius and other bishops concerning the re-edifying and repairing of churches, faith that' liberty being now restored, 'and that dragon being removed from the ad

* ministration of public affairs, by the provi

* dence of the great God, and by my ministry,

* I esteem the great power of God to have been 'made manifest even to all.' Moreover (7) a picture of Constantine was set up over the palace gate, with the cross over his head, and under

his

(6) Nun h rnt iW&jpia{ agrojb- libertas restituta fit,, et draco Smous, Koi Tk inumrcf ntum inra ille providemiaquidemDei opvr,c rut xattui ^iGixijcriius, Tk 0s« Ts timi maximi, ministerio autem f*iyi-Hœr{6K:i«, ijixBTsjK ¥Iw^jiv, nostro a reipubiicæ administrai»!oi4.'^Sf»To{, i)ynpM r.xi mum tionc lubniotus; equidcm exisQa»ifat ytymo-Sai St»«» Sv- timo divinam potentiam omniVi\j.;i, K. T. A. Nunc vero cum bus clariffime innotnifle. &c.

Euscb. his feet the great enemy of mankind, who persecuted the church by the means of 'impious tyrants, in the form of a dragon, transfixed with a dart thro' the midstoshis body, andfallingheadlongintothe depth of the sea; in allusion, as it is said exprefly, to the divine oracles in the books of the prophets, where that evil spirit is called the dragon and the crooked serpent. Upon this victory of the church, there is introduced (ver. 10.) a triumphant hymn of thanksgiving for the depression of idolatry, and exaltation of true religion: for now it was no longer in the power of the heathen persecutors, as Satan accused holy Job before God, to accuse the innocent Christians before the Roman governors, .as the perpetrators of all crimes, and the causers of all calamities. It was not by temporal means or arms that the Christians obtained this victory, (ver. n.) but by spiritual, by the merits and death of their redeemer, by their constant profession of the truth, and by their patient suffering of all kinds of tortures even unto death: and the blood of the martyrs hath been often called the feed of

the

Euseb. de Vita Constant. Lib. Tj ©ih &<* Tjk Tu» a§sm œ-oXiif. 2, Cap. 46. Socratis Hist. Ec- JOiaaiTas rvpxmSo:,oVaxo»fo; clef. J,.ib. 1. Cap. 9. Theodorit. /*o;9ji hostem i'lumctinimicum Lib. I. Cap. 15. generis humani, qui impioratn

(7) Euseb. de Vita Constant, tyrannorum opera ecclesiam Lib. 3. Cap. 3. To» os ixfy0" xa" Deioppugrtaverat; subdraconis wo?ii^.n» To» sxxTiijsriaj' forma,

P 3 (S) T*»t<* the church. This victory was indeed (ver. 12.) matter of joy and triumph to the blessed angels and glorified saints in heaven, by whose sufferings it was in great measure obtained j but still new woes are threatened to the inhabiters cf the earth; for tho' the dragon was deposed, yet was he not destroyed \ though idolatry was depressed, yet was it not wholly suppressed; there were still many Pagans intermixed with the Christians; and the devil would incite fresh troubles and disturbances on earth, because he knoweth that he hath but a Jhort time, it would not be long before the Pagan religion should be totally abolished, and the Christian religion prevail in all^ the Roman empire.

13 And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the vmn-child,'. ,"

14 And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place: where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent,

15 And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood, after the woman j that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. 16 And

(8) T%vTf f*" «» pvoso; [fbrsan ^Soiigoj] Tij X«i wo»»j£o; iaipvxt

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