« PreviousContinue »
into three general Periods. The Firft is that of the Christian Church in the four first Ages which were those of her purity ; the second is that of her Corruption, Idolatries & Antichristianism, that was to endure 1260 years at the conclusion wherof an end must be put to the Babylonish Empire. The third Period contains the reign of a thousand years, during which the Church must have peace,
& after which must follow the last judgment.
The first of these Periods is the shortest, not lasting above 3 or 400 years. And therfore St. Tohn doch not stay much upon it. This is the Period which he describes in a few words in the beginning of the 11th. Ch. And there was given to me a reed like a rod, & the Angel stood , saying, rise & measure the temple of God, & the Altar, e them that worship therin. But the court which is without the Temple, leave out
E measure it not, for it is given to the Gentiles , & the koly city shall they tread under foot forty @ two Months. All the world is agreed, that the Temple built by Solomon according to the orders of God, was an Emblem of the Church. This Temple had two Courts, an inward and an outward one. Here the H. Ghost represents the whole duration of the Christian Church by the extent of this Temple and its Courts. Nothing is more proper to shadow forth the extent of time than the extent of place. This inward Court that was measured by. St. John, together with the Altar & them that worship therin is the first period of
the Church, the Ages which we call the happy
Monthes This is the Christian Churcb & the turn’d Pagan by the admillion of fecondary couran Deities, mediating Spiries , & Images. Here Emblem of is one thing that delerves to be carefully
rupied taken notice of: betwcen the duration of the Church. Church in its purity and in its corruption, there is exactly the very fame proportion as there is between the greatness & the extent of the inward Court & the outward one. Those that have taken the pains to compute the extent of these two Courts according to that description of them, that we meet with in the lewish Authors, both facred & prophane, find that the proportion of the inward Court V. Villalto that without is the same with that of pand, in one to three & a half. Now there is the very fame proportion between the duration of the Church in its corruption & in its purity, The corrupt Church lasts 42. Months', that is three years & a Half : according to which the Church in its purity must not have lasted above one prophetique year, which contains 360 Days , that is to say 360 Years. Indeed the Church did continue in its purity just so long. About the year 360 the unhappy fur perstions about Reliques , & the invocation of Saints began to creep into the Church;which
quickly degenerated into Idolatry. Thus the reign of Anti-Christian Idolatry hath' lasted three times & a half, hath lasted as long as the reign of pure Christianity. This is the outward Court, that is left out, & trodden under foot by the Gentiles , & prophaned by Idolatry, & which nevertheless is called the Holy City, because there God did preserve his elect. And they shall tread under foot the Holy City for 42. Months.
'Tis chiefly upon this period of 42 Months that the Prophecies of the Apocalypse do turn: & 'tis necessary to observe in this place, that during this Period several things fall out that are co-temporary. For this period is oftentimes repeated , & its characters are often affixed to diverss subjects; to the Woman that lies hid in the Desert, to the Gentiles that are to tread down the Court, to the two Witnesses that are to Prophecy člothed in fack-cloth , to the Dragon & to the Beast, to whom it is given to exercise his power for 42 months. These are not different Periods that must be fastned one to the end of the other. These are different Events, or the very same events prefented under different ideas
which must be accomplisht in the fame 'Period. For the right understanding therfore of the Chronology of the Apocalypse , it is necessary to know what events & things
are co-temporary Asthus: Many I. The Court which is to be trodden down the Apoca- by the Gentiles for the space of Forty Two typeco.. Months, Rec. 11. 2, teipporary.
II. The Woman, to whom are given two great Wings of an Eagle, to save her jelf in the Wilderness, where she is fed 1260 dayes, a time, and times, and half a time; i.e, one year, two years, and half a year; which make three years and a half, or forty two months. This is what is said Rev. 12.6, 14:
III. The two Witnesses, that must prophesie, clothed in Sackcloth for 1260 days, Rev. 11.13. 1260 days make jutt forty two months, or three years and a half.
IV. The Beast with seven Heads and ten Rey. 13. Horns, to whom Power is given to fulfil forty ļwo months : But we must observe, that there 42 months are affixed only to the seventh head of the Beast, which is that of Antichrift: the whole entire Roman Empire is signified by that Beast with seven Heads and ten Horns. The lalt Head is that of Antichrift, which alone must last as long as the other six. The Roman Empire, under Kings, Consuls, Decemvires, Tribunes of the People, perpetual Dictators and Emperors, laited about 1250
years, a little more or less. The seventh Head
of the Roman Ęmpire is Antichrist, and he is to continue 1260 days. 'Tis evident, that we mustassign the duration of forty two months to the sea venth Head, because 'tis to that we must affix the ten Horns, that signifie ten Kings; and 'tis to Antichrist that Daniel assigns for hisduration a Time, Times, and Half a Time. All the World acknowledges, that he means Antichrift by the little Horn, that grows in the midst of the ten, and that subdues three of thenz.
6. 7.v.25. He shall speakgreat words against the Most High, and shall
wear out the Saints of the Most High, and they shall be given into bis hund,until a time, and times, and the dividing of time. We have already observed, that this signifies one year, two years, and half a year. This is the duration of the Kingdom of Antichrist; 'tis also the duration of the seventh Head of the Roman Empire; and this is what they ought to take particular notice of, that make a scruple to grant, that these forty two months express the duration of the whole Beast with seven Heads and ten Horns.
V. In like manner the second Beast of the 13th chap. of the Revel. that hath but Two Horns, like tothose of a Lamb, and that spake like the Dragon, is also of the same duration; i.e. it must be found in the space of 42 months.
VI. The Whore also of the 17th chap. fitting upon the scarlet-coloured Beast, reigns in this Period of forty two months, 1260 days, or three years and a half. She sits upon the Beast, i.e. on the first Bealt, that had seven Heads and sen Hornsgand lasts as long as the 7th Head.
VII. Lastly, The 144 Thousand sealed persons, that appear in the 7th chapter, and are mention'd frequently afterwards, are also co-temporary with the Beast, and the Court trodden down by the Nations : for they are no other than the two Witnesses, that prophefie clothed in Sackcloth for 1260 days, whilst the outward Court is trodden under foot by the Gentiles ; & they are no other than the Woman that remains in the Wilderness, and