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Apoc. xii. 14. signify any duration between 31 and 31 years.
Thus also three days and an half may contain any Apoc. xi. 2.11. period between 34 and 3 days. And so in all other
cases whatsoever. But without particular evidence they ought not to be extended any farther. And it is to be obsery'd that tho' the Computations in this Essay do not always take express notice of this Latitude; yet that it may and ought to
be allow'd and understood upon all occasions. VII. Wherever any general word is us'd indefi
nitely, without a particular note of distinction; there the most eminent and remarkable of that kind
is to be in reason understood by it. Thus To Apoc. viij. 7.
reitoy tās zs, the third part of the Earth, is to be understood of the most eminent and remarkable
third part which can be fuppos'd. Thus also Dao.vij. 25. Time, Times, and a division or part of time, į. e.
three years, and a division or part of a year, must fignify three years and a month, because the most eminent and remarkable division, or part of a year, is a Month; as the most eminent and remarkable division, or part of a month with us, is a week; and of a week, a day; and of a day, an hour; and so in all other cases proportionably.
LEMMATA, or PREPARATORY PROPOSITIONS.
A Day, in those Prophecies both of Daniel and Vid. CI. Mori h St. John, which concern Christianity, the Times Op. Theolog. of the Messias, and the Church of the Gentiles, sig- and Mr. Girnifies a Year : and by consequence reven Days, or a ret's Discourse Week, fignifies seven years: and thirty Days, or a concora.
a concerning And
9 tichris, p. 322. Month, thirty Years : and so in other cases: and 348.* this through the whole Series of their Prophecies.
The Arguments for this Proposition are these
following: I. 'Twas not at all agreeable to the Nature and Genius of these Enigmatical Writings to make use of plain Words in the determination of its several Periods : and so to use the known word a Year standing for it self, without any cover or character. Histories indeed, being plain and literal Representations of past Events and Actions; and being intended for the Under, standing of all Men immediately, must use that and the like words in their strict and obvious meaning: and such Predicti. ons also as were much of the fame nature, and were deliver'd in plain and clear Words, ought in the same manner to obferve the decorum throughout, and to determin their Periods in the common Phrase and Language of Mankind. But as in My thological and Parabolical Narrations we do not expect that eve. ry Phrafe should be Historical and Obvious; fo neither can we expect that the Duration of the several Periods in Prophecies Hieroglyphical, Obscure, and Mystical, should be determin'd by the same common Measure of Time, which was made use of in the before-mention'd plain and clear Predi&tions. When God said in clear and express Words, that the Jews should serve the King of Babylox 70 Years; and that after 70 Years they ser.xxv.1, should be restor'd to their own Land again : I do not seek any & xxix. 10. other than a literal sense of the word Tears, because all the other words, as Babylon, and Judah, and Captivity, and the rest, are
taken in their ordinary Acceptation, without any Mystery or
Allegory at all. But when I find Times and Laws given into Dio.v!1,24,25. the hands of a Little Hirn for a time, and times, and a division of
time ; or for somewhat above three Years ; I consider that the time, times, and a division of time, or three years, and a part of another, may as well be Enigmatical, as the Horn is certainly so: And therefore I do not immediately conclude, that all the Tyranny of that Impious Dominion, signify'd by the Little Horn, is confin'd to a bare space of between three and four
Years : but search farther what is the Mystical signification of
. a Time or Year in this Mystical Prophecy. So when I find Apoc. 1X.5, 10. Locusts tormenting Men five Months : I enquire what the Inter
pretaton of five Months is in Prophetick style, as well as what is the Interpretation of Locufts; and do not immediately conclude that so great a Noise is made about a Calamity of less than
half a Year's continuance : and so of the rest. See Jurieu, part 11. 'Twas not at all consistent with the Design of God in 1. C.25. these Prophecies, to make every thing evident and unquestio.
nable by plain and express words. For thoʻthe Jewish Prophe. cies, which were generally to be fulfill'd by Heathens, who regarded them not, might and were plain and explicit; yet the Christian Prophecies being to be fulâillid by those that believ'd them, they ought not to be so: For as the Principal of them determin'd the Time for the Death of the Messiah; so the rest generally determin the Times of Antichrist, to be set up in the Church of Christ. Now if God had said by Daniel, that immediately after 483 Chaldean Years, from the 20th of Ar. taxerxes Longimanus the Messias should be Cut off ; Can we imagin that the Jews would ever have Crucify'd Jefus of Nazareth at that very time? And if God had said by St. Johnny that 360 Years after his seeing the Visions of the Apocalypse, ten Antichriftian Kingdoms should arise, and domineer in his Church for 1200 Years together; can we once suppose it possible that the Church should have submitted to them? No certainly; If these Prophecies had all been plain and explicit, and a Tear, the common Measure of Time, had been every: where us'd to determin the several Periods, in its common figBification, they had plainly hindred their own Completion ;
and and, without a fatal Determination of humane Actions, must have prevented all those Events which they foretold thould come to pass : as 'tis very easy for every one to discorn on a fmall Consideration. ..
III. And since the Nature and Genius of the Prophetick Style, as well as the Design of the Almighty in revealing these things, did require that a Year, the most usual and stated Meafure of Time, should not be express'd by it self, but by some other; It is evident from not a few Reafons and Teitimonies in the rest of the Scripture, that a Day is of all other the most fit and proper for it; nay, is certainly and frequently made use of therein to represent it on other occasions; as I have elsewhere New Theory prov'd. But, not to insist on the other Texts, at present I p. 81, eco shall only instance in two of the most remarkable, and such as seem directly to guide us to the true Prophetick importance of that word, and so of those derived from it. Your Children, Numb.XIV.331 fays God to the Disobedient Ifraelites, small wander in the Wilo 34. derness forty years; after the onmber of the days in which ye search. ed the Land, even forty days, each day for a year, Mall you bear your iniquities, even forty years. And still more fully and ex. pressly to our present purpose in that Eminent Historical Prophecy of Ezekiel: Lye thou, says God to him, on thy left side, Ezek.lv. 4,66 and lay the inignity of the house of Ifrael. upon it : according to the number of the days that thou salt lye upon it, thou malt bear their iniquiry. For I have laid upon thee the years of their iniquity, according to the number of the days, three hundred and ninety days ; se malt thou bear the iniquity of the house of Ifrael. And when thou hast accompliss'd them, lye again on the right fide, and thou. palt bear the iniquity of the house of Judah forty days: I have
a day for a year , a day : יום לשנה יום לשנה abbainted chee
for a year.
IV. This appears by such Prophecies of Daniel as have their Periods determin'd by days, or words equivalent thereto, or de! riv'd from it.Because it may easly be prov'd, that not one of them were fulfill'd in that literal and ordinary acceptation for bare days: Whereas it will hereafter appear, that in the other Prophetick signification for years, all that are expir'd have already been fulfill'd;, and so there can be no reason to doubt of the fulfil.
ling of the rest in their due seasons hereafter. Now since this Argument is of all others the most important in this matter ; and such as, if it can be well prov'd, determins the dispute; I shall more particularly insist upon it. And in order to the more convincing Evidence, I shall examin all Daniel's Numbers in Order; and Thew of every one in particular, that it was not fulfill'd according to thc Exposition of those who interpret days according to the letter of so many bare natural days only: and so shew the absolute necessity of recurring to that other Prophetick signification, of which we are now discour
sing. The first Text in Daniel, which determins a Period by Dan. vij. 25. a Collection or Number of Days, is that of the Little Horn,
growing up among Ten Horns; which should have Times and Dan, xij. 7. Laws given into his hand until a time and times, and a divison
or part of time. Which words, Time and Times, both by the Dan. iv. 16, 23, seven times that were to pass over Nebuchadnezzar; which are
generally suppos’d to have been seven years: By a Parallel place Dun. xi. 13. in the fame Book, the King of the North fhall certainly come
at the End of Times, that is to say, Tears, as my Lord Bishop of Worcester well observes : for the Hebrew being not in region
mine, but in appofition, cannot properly be otherwise rendred : Apoc.xij.6,14. and by St. John's Exposition of 'em in the Apocalypfe, appear
to be three Chaldean Years, and a part of a Year. Now lince this Number belongs to that remarkable Period of the Fourth, or Roman Monarchy, after the Rise of its ten Horns, or Division into ten Kingdoms ; ( which is known not to have been till the Fisth Century of Christianity ;) as the Context will shew to any who consults it: And since it ends not till the conclusion of that Fourth or Roman Monarchy, and the commencing of our Saviour's glorious Kingdom upon its destructi. on; as is clear from the Angel's Exposition of it: We shall only need to count the Time since the Fifth Century, to know whether by thefe three years, and a part of another, i.e. as we shall see hereafter three years and one month, so many bare years are intended or not. For 'tis but too plain, that the last State of the Roman Monarchy is not yet over; and that our Saviour's Kingdom of Righteousness and Peace is not yet set up in the World. Nay, if we should leave the clear and evident Sence