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the battlements shall be the idols of the desolator, even until the consummation : and that which is determined shall be poured upon the desolator.”
The paraphrase may be thus continued :-And the 483 years being fulfilled, by the completion of the second period of 434 years, the seventieth week begins, and then Messiah shall be cut off, or separated from the Jewish Church, even as the husband is divorced from the wife, and he shall retain nothing there, for by his gospel he shall supersede the law. The Jews shall no longer continue as his chosen people; and the Gentiles, whom he shall adopt in their stead, shall at the appointed time overthrow the Jewish temple, and its ritual. Upon the preaching of the gospel, the very sanctuary itself shall be polluted, and shall becoine a mere lifeless form; for everyone who is brought to know the Lord God of Israel, to worship him in spirit and in truth, shall thenceforth quit the Jewish, and cleave to the Christian dispensation. The end of the Jewish Church shall be accompanied with an overwhelming destruction upon the people, and desolation shall be their portion, even until the time of the end. And Messiah shall ordain unto many a new dispensation, or
, covenant, which shall endure for one week only, even for the last week of the seventy--that is, for the
period of seven years, from the commencement of the ministry of John the Baptist, unto the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus. And in the middle part of that week, or period of seven years, Messiah shall begin his own personal ministry, and being then made manifest as the true Lamb of God, and the only sacrifice for sin, spoken of by the law and the prophets, He shall cause his followers to look from the shadow to the substance, and from the types to their glorious Antitype, so that they may discern the inadequacy of legal and ceremonial sacrifices for the taking away of sin. And after
. the Jewish Church shall have been destroyed, and the people themselves scattered amongst the nations, the idolatries of the Roman desolator shall prevail over the face of the earth, and shall continue until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled, and the mystery of God is accomplished ; and then a swift destruction shall be poured out upon that destroyer.
The foregoing paraphrase adapts itself so readily to history, that it cannot be necessary to add any further comment.
Prophecy of the Latter Days-Dan. xi. and xii.
The eleventh chapter of Daniel enters into the detail of those events, which belong to the Church of Christ during the latter times of its warfare. In the tenth chapter the angel tells the prophet, “ I am come to make thee understand what shall befal thy people in the latter days, for the vision is for many days." The term thy people, can only refer to the Jews, or to the Christian Church; and the scope of the prophecy, extending as it does through so many centuries, leads naturally to the conclusion, that the Church of Christ, both under the Jewish and also under the Christian dispensation, is comprehended under this expression.
The vision which the prophet saw is not related, or perhaps he saw nothing more than the appearance of the glorious personage, with whom he held converse, “but he understood the thing, and had understanding of the vision,” and the angel delivered to him the interpretation of it, which is continued through the eleventh and twelfth chapters.
The vision was in the reign of Cyrus, and the angel says, v. 2. “ There shall stand up yet three kings in Persia, and the fourth shall be far richer than they all; and by his strength, through his riches, he shall stir up all, against the realm of Grecia.”—The fourth after Cyrus was Xerxes, whose wealth was so abundant, as to be almost proverbial ; and his expedition into Greece with an immense army, raised in part from his own subjects, and in part collected from his allies, is a very memorable event of ancient times.
Verse 3. “And a mighty king shall stand up, that
, shall rule with great dominion, and do according to his will; and when he shall stand up, his kingdom shall be broken, and shall be divided toward the four winds of heaven, and not to his posterity, nor according to his dominion which he ruled; for his kingdom shall be plucked up, even for others beside them.”
Alexander is the king here spoken of; he ruled over Greece, subdued Persia, and added India to his conquests; and having reigned something less than thirteen years, he died at Babylon before he attained the age of thirty-three; after which, four of his generals divided his dominions between them, and
his family soon became extinct. If the details of this long chapter were followed accurately from the begipning, a clearer light might probably be thrown upon that portion of the prophecy, which relates to , gospel times But the commentators, to which the writer of these pages has referred, do not appear to him
very satisfactory; and if, as he inclines to think, the general history of the Church, as standing among the nations of the earth, both under the law and under the gospel, form the subject of the prophecy, the scheme of interpretation which has been adopted by Bishop Newton and others, does not meet the subject. The discussion of this part of the prophęcy will not, however, advance the inquiry into the time and circumstances of Messiah's second advent; apd, therefore, as in verse 31 an expression will be found, which determines with precision, that the fourth kingdom of the earth, or Roman power, is there spoken of, it may be well to take that verse for a guide, and to pursue from thence the examination of what remains.
V. 31 declares, “they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate;" and that by this expression, the Roman power, under one form or other, is intended, cannot be questioned; for the Lord himself so states it to his disciples in Matthew xxiv. 15, and