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contrary to the Pope. This is a little glitter, ing Light, but I am much afraid'tisa Deceitful
For First, Why should we comprehend, in this Empire of Satan, the Reigns of Constantine and Theodofius, which were fo happy for the Church? 2dly, Why should it be said to this Antichristian Period, I know thy Good Works, and that thou haft not Denyed my Name? seeing there never were fewer that made profession of the Truth, than in this Pe. riod. "If ever the Church may be accused of having renounced the Name of Jesus Christ, 'tis in the time of Antichristianilin, which is called an Apostacy: so that this Article doth not hit well; but that which follows doth inuch worse.
Thyatira, according to this Author, is the Church from the time that the Albigenses were destroyed, to that time that entire Nations abandon’d the Communion of Rome. 'Tis it may be a time the most barren in Virtue, and the most overwhelm'd with Superstition, thatever was since Jesus Christ: yetmust this great Praise be attributed to it, I know thy Works, and thy Patience, and thy Charity; and that thy laft Wórks are more than the first. What is said to the Church of Ephesus, which 'tis pretended is the Apostolical Church, is not so honourable, nor fo great ; Thou sufferest the Woman Iezabel, that calls herself a Prophetess. How can this be applied to those Ages that have run out since the Ruin of the Albigenfes, to the Reformation ? fezabel, that Roman Whore, hath not only been suffer'd and tole
rated, she hath reigned with less Contradictia on than in any Age.
Sardis is the fifth Church, which signifies the fifth Period according to Dr. More; and this Period is that of the Reformation, tơ the last Vial, i,c. to the last Ruin of Antichrist. 'Tis to this Church that the Holy Spirit faith, Thon haft a Name to live, but bec hold thou art dead. Can it be imagin’d, that God should give such great Praises to the Church that was since the Ruin of the Al. bigenses till the Reformation, and that the Holy Spirit should be made to speak with so much Disdain of the Reformed Church ? What comparison is there between the Church in its Reformation, & that corrupted Church, wherein hardly any was to be ound that preserv'd himself from the mighty Corruption of Error and Vice?
Philadelphia, which is the sixth Church, fignifies a sixth Period, wherein Antichrist shall be entirely ruin'd, and the Infidel Nationsbeconverted. This is to divine; and that which the Holy Spirit faith to the sixth Church, doth not exactly import any such thing
Laftly; Laodicea, of which the Holy Spirit speaks in fueh disadvantageous terms, is the Church that must fall into decay after the Fall of Antichrist, and the Conversion of the Peo. ple. And this Decay mustbring the Churchi to the coming of the Kingdom of Jesus Chrift ori the Earth. See here anew Period, and of which there is not the least foot-step in all the
Prophecies. 'Tisa Period that must run out from the Ruin of Antichrist, and the Converfion of the People. All the Prophecies foretell, that the Reign of Jesus Christ shall come immediately after the Fall of Babylon, and the Fulness of the Gentiles. Yet here behold a Period, that separates these two Events, whịch ought to be joyned together.
Lastly; this System is subject to the fame inconveniencies as that of Cocceius. There must be supposed an eighth Period for the reign of the thousand years, which Dr. More acknowledges. Now it must be confessed, that this eighth Period is altogether unknown to the Prophets; for we do not any where find, that the time hath been divided into Eight parts.
Those that will attentively reflect on what we have just now said, will confess, if I am not much mistaken, either that these Epistles to the seven Churchesare not prophetical, or that the Mystery hath not yet been discovered: For nothing that hath been said about them, hath this certain Character of Truth, which s obvious to every one. The Prophecies must be like Anigma's, which till they have been well explained, feem unintelligible; but when one hath hit right upon them, they appear so clear, that they cannot otherwise be underftood.
Creatures,& of the twenty four Elders, con
tained in the fourth Chapter.
three first chapters of the Revelation we
we are washed & juftified. It is of Glass & of Chrystal, because of its firmness. For the Gospel is an eternal Covenant , that shall not be done away by a new covenant.
Butthat which is most considerable, here is the four living Creatures & the
twenty four Elders that are round about the Throne.
6. And before the Throne there was a Sea of The exGlass like unto Chrystal , & in the midst of the plication Throne 8 round about the Throne were four fion of the Beasts full of Eyes before & behind.
7. And the first Beast was like a Lión, & the ders & the second beaft like a Calf, & the third beast bad creatures ,
twenty four El
& face as a man , & the fouth beast was like a
fix wings about him, "es they were full of Eyes within, theyrest not day & night, saying, Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God Almighty, which was , andis, ES is to come.
9. And when those Beasts give Glory, OS Honour , & thanks to him that fate on the Throne , who liveth for ever & ever.
10. The twenty four Elders fall down before him that fate on the Throne
on the Throne , & worship him that liveth for ever & ever, & cast their Crowns before the Throne.
In the 4th. v. thefe Elders are represented fitting on twenty four seats cloathed in white Rai.
ment, & having on their heads Crowns of Gold. The opi.
Wemust firit know what these four living Creatures are , & then we shall easily guels
what the twenty four elders signify. The conthese four jecture of our 70seph Mede is ingenious & atures & learned. He believes these four living Creatherwenty tures represent the whole Christian-Church, s.
e. all the Christian People, by way of allusion to the encampings of ancient Ifrael : It was, faith he, distributed into four bodies, three tribes in each body, each body had its commanding tribe that marched in the front; & every one of these four tribes had its standard, wherin was the figure of a living Creature. Judah marched in the front of the First body, & had under it Isachar & Zabulon. Reuben was the second head , & had under it Simeon & Gad. The third head was Ephraim, which
nion of 3. Medo about