« PredošláPokračovať »
The kings, the merchants, the ship-masters, and all the company in ships, and sailors, or, in other words, the civil heads of the Church, the lay-holders of benefices, the large share-holders of the clergy, and the whole company of the beneficed, are represented as bewailing her approaching fall; but fall she must: and God grant that there may be plenty of wheat to separate from the chaff when she does; or rather God grant that they may hear his voice, Come out of her, before hand, that they be not overwhelmed with her. xviii. 21. Thus, with violence shall that great city, Baby'on, be overthrown, and shall be found no more at all. Dan. ix. 27.
2. Infidel nations, in the primary sense of the prophecy. Dan. ix. 27. See 1.
3. Abomination of Desolation. a) The Roman armies which overthrew and desolated Jerusalem. Mark xiii. 14. But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation,
, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not, (let him that readeth understand,) then let them that be in Judea flee to the mountains. Compare Luke xxi. 20. b) The ten-horned or decemviral Cæsar of of the Romans, the German Cæsar of the Romans, and the Pope, who desolate the spiritual Jerusalem or ChristoJudaic Church, and scatter the power of the holy people by the sword and by flame, by captivity and by spoil, for from 1260 to 1290 years; the opponents of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, the three-one Antichrist or Man of Sin, who sitteth in the temple of God shewing himself that he is God, that is, usurpeth the seat and authority of God, by making himself head of the Church, and shaping out a creed for its observance, which he defends by fire and sword, and by giving that portion of the Church who will submit to his dictation exclusive privileges in the ten kingdoms of the Roman Empire, to the detriment of the rest who will not. Dan. ix. 27 ; xi. 31; xii. 11.
Abyss, or BOTTOMLESS Pır.—The world, whatever in it is earthly, sensual, devilish. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life is not of the Father but of the world. Jalkut Rubeni, fol. 37. 2. Qui circumcisus est, dignus habetur liberatione inferna et superna, et eripitur nnu kan ex fonte perditionis qui est mundus. Schættgen Hor. Hebr. et Talm, on Apoc. ix. 1. He who is circumcised, say the Rabbins, is snatched from the fountain of perdition which is the world. Rev. ix. ll. The angel of the bottomless pit. xi. 7. The beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit. xvii. 8. The beast shall ascend out of the bottomless pit. Muhammedanism and Antichristianism are the offspring of the world. John xviii. 36. “But my kingdom,” says our Saviour, "is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world then would my servants fight; i.e. my gospel is connected with no political establishment; it is not to be enforced by the civil sword, nor to make a part of any worldly government as hitherto happened in my Jewish polity; in this kingdom every man is his own king and priest, the enforcer and teacher of his own Christianity : if it had not been so, I should have myself set the example now of enlisting the civil power in my service. The priestly oflice is no longer to be confined to any particular body of men as it was to the Levites, nor does my religion want the power of kings to keep it up. My Church is built upon the confession of the Son of God, who am its sole upholder, and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it. I am with it to the end." Though the Moslems acknowledge the apostleship of Issa, or Jesus, the character of the religion of Muhammed is directly opposite to that of his degraded predecessor : humility and charity are no ingredients in the composition of a Musselman. A religion propagated by the sword, and a faith maintained by persecution, have the very front and bearing of a Satanic Spirit. “No wars which ever desolated the Christian world have caused half the bloodshed and woe, or been so strongly stamped with the character of implacable animosity, as have the political and religious controversies of the Muhammedan sectaries. The history of every age of the Hegira teems with details of horror, and the Turks and Persians, the representatives of two sets of opinions, have, in most ages, emulated each other in mutual detestation and hatred. They have agreed only in a principle of discord.” Mill's Muhammed. 2d edit. p. 374. The last of the flesh, too tolerated here, and the sensual paradise held out as the reward hereafter, surely betray the true origin of Islamism. The character of Antichristianism, the religion of the Beast, is partly of the same character. The unnecessary maintenance by the civil power of a faith, of which a belief in the constant upholding of it by the founder himself forms a distinguished part, is an unnecessary aggravation of the breach of that command which forbids a Christian to take up the sword for its propagation. And when this civil power goes so far as to oppress those who cannot conscientiously subscribe to its dogmas, and excludes them from the common rights of fellow citizens, bowever its pretensions may be the support of Christianity, it is evidently the destroyer of it, and the deluded instrument of the angel of the abyss. For where there is persecution there is no charity : and where there is no charity, there is no Christianity. Our Lord certainly gave to the Apostles power to
exclude from the Church all turbulent and heretical members. This is a right which every constituted society possesses in itself. He gave them even greater authority: their sentences would be ratified by heaven. But to be members of a Christian Church can never be determined upon
the mere accident of birth within its pale, or upon ceremonies imposed, when the subject of them is incapable of assent: and there is a great difference between being the judge and the executioner. Vengeance is mine, saith the Lord, I will repay: Christians could but little imitate their Father which is in heaven, who maketh his Sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust, if they were to add to their verdicts any thing more than a negative infliction on the offender, by treating him as an heathen man and a publican, i. e. by avoiding him, and that only in cases of the strongest necessity. Matth. xviii, 15—18. It is very evident from the comparison of v. 17 of Matth. xviii. with v. 18, that the positive execution of the sentence of the Church was to be left entirely to our Lord. Thus St. Paul delivers over the incestuous person to Satan, and our Lord visits him with some personal affliction. 1 Cor. v. To deprive of civil rights, therefore, to cunfiscate, banish, imprison, mutilate, gibbet, burn, massacre, dragocnade, and torture on the rack, on account of religion, are not of the Father but of the world, and the world of the angel of the abyss. The grand error of Antichrist is, that the same law which makes a man a member of civil society, the accident of birth, makes him also a member of his Church: he counts the religion of his subjects as among the things which belong unto Cæsar; he consequently taxes even those to support a system who consider it to be no better than an abomination. The Apostles and primitive Christians
never put in force this means of obtaining a livelihood, the exacting tribute indifferently of believers or unbelievers—it was quite otherwise : for in the first three hundred years of Christianity, before the Church took its flight to the wilderness, she was well supported from the liberality of the converts, and her sole dependence upon the Lord, Him who is faithful and true, we are assured was the cause of a much more plentiful supply and equitable distribution of common funds, which, forsooth, were then not unseemly gotten, than happens when she was dependant upon the state. Bingham Ch. Antiq. B. v. Ch. iv. Sect. 15; Ch. vi. Sec. 1. Our holy religion is propagated by persuasion and the foolishness of preaching, and they are only proper members of the Church bound to support it, who are so by conviction, and acknowledge its authority. Any other means used to extend Christianity than persuasion, or gain supporters, than their own consent, as by fraud, force, corruption, extortion, or oppression, is not of the Father but of the world; and the world is the abyss, and the Beast rises out of it.
ADULTERY.-Idolatry mixed with the worship of the true God. Rev. ii. 22.
AIR.—The whole world. Satan is the prince of the air-he is the prince of this world.-Rev. ix. 2. The air was darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit. The extensive conquests of the Saracens over the world. xvi. 17. Compare Ep. ii. 2. John, xii. 3).
ALTAR.-The altur, i. e, of incense, put for the sanctuary in which it stood. The Christian Church on earth. To understand this, we must have some idea of the