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the Antichristian Beast, the Mother of harlots finds the execution of the judgments of God upon her in dreadful succession. The scenes of judgment become tremendous on one Papal nation, and on another. All in their turn have blood to drink. And Babylon the great sinks as a mighty millstone into the depth of the sea of revolution, tumult and blood, never to rise again.
5. The kings of the Papal earth, who have revelled in the idolatrous embraces of the harlot, lament and bewail her fall and miseries: At the sight of the smoke of her torments, which rises and is seen to the ends of the earth; or at the sight and hearing of her judgments and miseries, they cry, Alas, alas! In her distress they realize their own.
6. The merchants of the Papal earth likewise, (the dignitaries, and various orders of the Popish clergy). who have been literally made rich in her infamous and ungodly traffic, in superstitious rites, and the souls of men, now cry, Alas, alas! They weep and mourn over the ruins of their beloved hierarchy. Wailings and lamentation are heard through the nations of Papal superstition; while the judgments proceed with tremendous roar, and echo from land to land! These admirers of the harlot, standing afar off, some as fugitives in foreign lands, and others inclined to be as far distant as possible, for fear of her torments, lament her fall, crying, Alas, alas! that great city Babylon! For in one hour is her judgment come! Yea, the ship masters, ship companies, (it may be in a literal sense) traders and sailors, interrupted in their mercantile pursuits, by the perils of the times, are represented as standing afar off, in consternation at the view of the burnings of Babylon, or at hearing of the judgments on Papal nations, and bewailing the loss of their livings.
7. The blood of prophets and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth, is found here; and it no longer cries for retribution in vain. The God of judgment hears, and rises up out of his holy habitation. A tremendous scene of Divine wrath is opened, which overturns the seat of the Papal kingdom, and fills it with darkness, so that they gnaw their tongues,
for pain. The horns of the Antichristian Beast, in this chapter, are beginning to perform the execution of the Mother of harlots; though the scene will not be completed, till the battle at Armageddon. There in due time, the false prophet, (the remaining skeleton of Popery) and the Antichristian Beast himself, will sink into perdition.
All the events of this chapter imply the rise of a terrible instrument of judgment on Papal Babylon. This instrument, no doubt, is the Antichristian Beast. His horns were to hate the whore, to make her desolate and naked, to eat her flesh, and burn her with fire. These are judgments which may be as long a time in execution, as from the time of the fifth vial, to that of the seventh. But they commence at the rise of Antichrist.
8. The judgments in this chapter, cannot be the same with the seventh vial, in the destruction of Antichrist, and all the enemies of the Church. For in the latter case, there will be no Antichristian kings, nor mystical merchants of the Papal earth left, to bewail the fall of Babylon; as is the case in this chapter. For then they will all, far and near, sink together. So the predictions of that event clearly decide. The whole earth shall be devoured with the fire of my jealousy. The view of the whole of this xviiith chapter, in the light of the chapter preceding, evinces, that it is Papal Babylon, and not Artichrist, whose fall is here predicted. It is that Babylon, whose kings and mystical merchants had long been enriched with her delicacies and superstitious traffic. This is a trait of character, which cannot be applied to Antichrist; but which perfectly applies to Popery. The events of this chapter then cannot be the seventh, but must be the fifth vial.* In this, the Papal Beast is destroyed by the rise of the Antichristian Beast. The events of this chapter are the first capital judgment, which falls on Papal Babylon. Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen. However she had before experienced a number of judgments, even
* See Treatise on the fifth vial.
four vials of the wrath of God; yet she never fell before. And she is never found standing on her own foundation, afterward. This particular appears clearly to identify the event, with that of the fifth vial. For the Papal Beast has a seat (throne) and a kingdom, till the fifth vial; but afterward he has none. His seat is overturned and his kingdom filled with darkness. I apprehend then, that this xviiith of Revelation, and the fifth vial, predict the same event, the subversion of the predominant power of Popery, by the rise of Antichrist; although the events of this chapter may extend further, than those of the fifth vial, even to the time of the seventh, when Antichrist himself, as well as the remains of the Papal hierarchy, shall be totally destroyed.
9. This chapter, as well as the one preceding, pre. sents a Babylon, distinct from Antichrist. While the Papal hierarchy was predominant, it was Babylon the great. But when it ceased to be predominant, having fallen under the power of Antichrist, the latter becomes the mystical Babylon, or Babylon the great. The appellation applies to the great dominant Power upon the ground, be it Papal, or Antichristian. Accordingly we find a Babylon the great falling in this xviiith chapter of Revelation, which, I conceive, predicts the same event with the fifth vial: and yet we also find a great Babylon coming into remembrance before God, when he gives unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath, in after days, Rev. xvi, 19, under the seventh vial. The collateral prophecies of this latter event, decide, that by great Babylon here, Antichrist, or the last head of the Roman Beast, is primarily intended, although Popery, as a subordinate power, may be included. While the Papal hierarchy was predominant, this was the Beast; and the old Roman Beast lay dead. But when the latter revived, and took the ground, the Papal Beast died. Popery is not thenceforward called a Beast, but the false prophet, under the dominion of the new Beast: And as the Papal Beast dies, on the rise of the Antichristian; so in like manner Papal Babylon sinks under the fifth vial, and in this xviiith of Revelation, upon the rise of the Anti.
christian Babylon. And the latter is the Babylon whose destruction was announced by the ancient prophets in Israel, as an event just to precede the Millenni um. Various of those ancient predictions of the destruction of ancient Babylon, will meet their ultimate accomplishment in the destruction of Antichrist, under the seventh vial. He is the Babylon to be destroyed at the battle of the great day.
This view may help to explain Rev. xiv, 8;* And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen,
*This xivth chapter of Revelation I apprchend will be found to contain events, which exactly synchronize with the events of the seven vials: Or, events from the opening of the reformation from Popery, till the close of the battle of the great day, which is to precede the Millennium. Veise 1; And I looked, and lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Zion; and with him an hundred and forty and four thousand, having his Father's name written in their foreheads. This follows a description of the Papal Beast. Some time in the course of his dismal tyranny, the event here introduced might be looked for. It was an event some time to precede the fall of Papal Babylon, by the rise of the terrible Power of the last days; as the announcing of this fall of Papal Babylon is found in the 8th verse of this chapter. This appearing of the Lamb on Mount Zion, indicates a remarkable appearing of Christ in his Church, for the enlargement, purity, and protection, of his followers. His having with him 144,000, who have his Father's name written in their foreheads, indicates a vast accession to the number of his witnesses. In Rev. vii, 1, we find four angels holding the four winds, or staying impending judgments, till the people of God should be sealed in their foreheads. The number of 144,000 are sealed. Expositors inform us, that this description related to the prosperous state of the Church, in the Roman empire, after the revolution under Constantine, from Paganism to Christianity; and before the awful judgments of the northern invasions commenced. The Church then enjoyed a sealing time, a season of great enlargement. Vast multitudes, represented as 12 times. 12,000 (12 being the number of the apostles, and also of the patriarchs) were sealed; 144,000, or a vast multitude, a certain number put for an uncertain. In this verse (chapter xiv, 1) we have a similar representation; as if it had been said, Christ again, after a dismal reign of darkness and Papal tyranny, appears in his Church. Another remarkable sealing time com mences. Another 144,000 (or class of countless multitudes) are set apart for God's pure worship. To what event could this relate, but to the reformation under Luther? The events
is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication. Af ter wonderful missionary exertions to propagate the
of that day perfectly answer to the figure. And no events of any preceding period do appear to answer to it. The succeeding verses accord with the events of the reformation. Verse 2; And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many wa ters, and as the voice of a great thunder; and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps. 3; And they sung as it • were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders; and no man could learn that song, but the hundred and forty and four thousand, who were redeemed from the earth. These are they, who were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they who follow the Lamb withersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the first fruits unto Cod, and to the Lamb. 5; And in their mouth was found no guile; for they are without fault before the throne of God. Here the scene enlarges, as the doctrines of the reformation progress through Protestant lands. The heavenly hosts on the occasion sing, Rev. xii, 10; Now is come salvation and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ; for the accuser of our brethren is cast down. The voice of the Protestant worshippers becomes like the roaring of great waters; yea of mighty thunder. It is the voice of harpers, or of those engaged in the sublime worship of God. Their song is new, and known by none, but those, who are taught it by the Spirit of grace. The purity of their doctrines and worship from the filthy idolatries of the Papal har lot, is strikingly noted. Idolatry is spiritual whoredom. And the Protestants, having renounced the idolatries of the Papal see, and become correct and holy in their doctrines and modes of worship, are represented as above, and as being spotless before the throne of God. Freedom from idolatry was the perfection of Job, of David, and of Asa. And this was the perfection of the Protestant multitudes here described. They are the first fruits unto God and to the Lamb; a resemblance of the dawn of the Millennium, and an earnest of it. The Church now seemed to be fast coming forth from her long exile in the wilderness.
In process of time, after the doctrines of the reformation are extensively and well established, and the scene of judgments on Papal nations has commenced; the eyes of Protestant multitudes are opened, and their hearts united and enlarged, to attempt great things toward evangelizing the heathen world. Verse 6; And I saw another angel, (or the first of several angels) fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting Gospel to preach to them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people; 7;