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horrence of the impious imposture of Mohama medism; nor a detestation of the diabolical principles of Antichrist; are alone sufficient to prepare us for the kingdom of heaven. We must beware, lest we have a name that we live, and are dead. We must be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain that are ready to die; lest our works be not found perfect before God * It will be but small comfort to each of us as individuals, that our country is preserved amidst the wreck of nations to fulfil the future high 'purposes of the Almighty, if we through our own negligence fall short of the promised reward. In fine, our eternał interests will be but little benefited by the study of prophecy, unless we pursue it in the manner which the apostle himself hath proposed to us. “ Blessed is he that readeth, and they that “ hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those * things which are written therein: for the time is at hand t.”
* Res. iii. 1, 2.
| Rev. io
WHEN the first edition of this Dissertation was published, I had not had an opportunity of perusing the recently printed work of Archdeacon Woodhouse on the Apocalypse; but it would be unpardonable, considering the plan which I have adopted, to suffer a second edition to make its appearance without noticing it. The thanks of every biblical student are due to the learned author for his very clear and convincing Dissertation on the divine Origin of the Apocalypse, and likewise for many valuable rernarks and much sound criticism contained in his notes on the book. I feel myself peculiarly gratified and interested at finding several of my own positions maintained and established by a writer, with whom I have not the honour of being acquainted, and whose work I had not read at the time when my own was published. Thus, we are both agreed, that Mohunmedism constitutes one half of a grand apostasy from the purity of Christianity *; that the
* The position, that Mohammedism is a Christian apostasy, is so ably treated by the Archdeacon, that I cannot refrain from strengthening what I have already said on the subject with his quotations and arguments.
“ Mohammed did not pretend to deliver any new religion, but to revive the old “ one. He allowed both the Old and New Testaments, and that both Moses and “ Jesus were prophets sent from God (Prideaux's Life of Mohammed, « 19.); that Jesus, son of Mary, is the word and a spirit sent from God, a re“ deemer of all that believe in him. (Sale's Koran, p. 19, 30, 65. Ockley's “ Hist. of Saracens II.). Mohammed represents himself as the Paraclete or “ Comforter sent by Jesus Christ, John xvi. 7. (Koran, p. 165.). So, in “ Mohammed's ascent to heaven, as invented in the Koran, while the pas
apocalyptic great city denotes, not merely the town of Rome,
« triarchs and prophets confess their inferiority to him by intreating his
prayers, in the seventh heaven he sees Jesus, whose superiority the false
prophet acknowledges by commending himself to his prayers (Sale's " Koran, p. 17. Prideaux's Life of Mohammed, p. 55). Faith in the divine “ books is a necessary urticle of the Mohammelan creed; and among these is the • Gospel given to Issa or Jesus, which they assert to be corrupted by the Chris“ tians.---íf any Jew is willing to become a Mohammedun, he must first believe " in Christ: and this question is asked him, Dost thou believe that Christ was “ born of a virgin by the blast (i. e. inspiration) of God, and that he was the o last of the Jewishi prophets? If he answers in the affirmative, he is made a " Mohammedan (Reland on Moham. pref. 25, 11.). Mohammed arose to « establish a new religion, which came pretty near the Jewish, and wus not
entirely different from that of several sects of Christians, which got him a great many followers (Leibnitz's Letter, 1706.). The impostor Mohammed confessed that Jesus was born of the Virgin Mary, that he was the word of God “ sent from heaven, the Spirit of God declared by the miracles of the Gospel, “ the prophet of Goa, whose office it was to deliver the Gospel and teach the way
of truth, who is to come to judgment and to destroy Antichrist and convert the « Jews. Thus also he taught, that the Gospel of Christ, and the Law of Moses, “ and all the prophets, are to be believed. And thus he was better inclined to the “ Christians than to the Jews (Spanhem. Tutrod. ad hist. sac. vii. p. 609.). " Mohanımedism began as a christian heresy, acknowledging Christ for a pro“phet, a greater than Moses, born of a Virgin, the Word of God (Ricaut's " Ottoman Empire, p. 138.). Sale asserts the Mohammedan religion to be “ not only a Christian heresy, but an improvement upon the very corrupt idola" trous system of the Jews and Christians of those times (Prelim. p. 15.). Joseph “ Mede affirms, that the Mohammedans are nearer to Christianity than many * of the ancient heresies, the Cerinthians, Guostics, Manichees (Works
p. 645.). Whatever good is to be found in the Mohammedun religion (and
some good doctrines and precepts there undeniably are in it), is in no small “ measure owing to Christianity : for Mohammedisin is a borrowed system, mare
up for the most part of Judaism and Christiunity; and, if it be considered in “ the most favourable view, might possibly be accounted a sort of Christian he. “ resy. If the Gospel had never been preuched, it may be questioned whether “ Mohammedism would have existed (Dr. Jortin's First Charge.). The Mus“ sulmans are already a sort of heterodox Christians. They are Christianş, if “ Locke reasons justly, because they firmly believe the immaculate conception, “ dimne character, and miracles, of the Messiah : but they are heterodox in ?" denying vehemently his character of Son, and his equality, as God, with the “ Father, of whose unity and attributes they entertain and express the most awful “ ideas,while tirey considerour doctrine as perfect blasphemy, and insist that our
but a corrupt communion*; that the holy city is not the literal Jerusalem, but the Christian church t; that the first beast of the apocalypse is not the Papucy, but the Roman empitet; that the deadly wound of this berist denotes his conversion to Christianity under Constantine, and that his revival means his relupsing into idolatrys; that the little horn of Daniel's fourth beast cannot be the same as the first apocalyptic beast, in other words that it cannot be the same as the beust himself of which it is only a member (as some commentators have supposed), but that it is the same as the second apocalyptic beast or the fulse prophet || ; that
© copies of the Scriptures have been corrupted both by Jews and Christians. “ Sir William Jones in Asiatic Researches, Vol. I. p. 63.
“ These are such testimonies as have occurred to me in noʻvery extensive
course of reading. They are derived from authors, who for the most part " enjoyed favourable opportunities of examining the Mohammedan tenets ; is and they exhibit that religion as rising upon the basis of true religion, cora “ rupted, even like the papal, to serve the purposes of a worldly and dia" bolical tyranny. In the Mohammedan religion are these articles, all evi. “ dently derived from the Christian, and constituting in it a great superiority * above any thing that paganism of mere philosophy have been able to prod “ duce : the belief of the existence of one all-wise, ah-good, all-powerful, " God ; of the immortality of the soul; of future rewards and punishments " to be distributed by Jesus; of the acceptance of prayer, of self-humiljation, " of almsgiving ; of the obligation to'morality in almost all its branches. * Take from Mohammedish one article, in which it differs from all religions
generally admitted to be Christian, the belief of Mohammed's divine mission; " and little will then be found in it, which may not be discovered in the
profession of many acknowledged Christians. Nay, perhaps it may ap
pear, that the creeds of two bodies of Christians will supply every thing " which is to be found in Mohamedism, excepting belief in the protended
prophet of Mecca.
dies, in Tartary, in Egypt, and Africa, which were once Christian : “ shall readily admit, that, if not a Christian heresy, is is at least a Christian apostasy." Apocalypse translated, p. 365-370. p. 293, 301, 412, 418.
+ p. 386.
p. 329-538, 429-439. § p. 336, 345, 426, 428, 436.
#p. 352-356. VOL. II.
the deadly wound and revival of the first apocalyptic beast is enigmatically described by the phrase was, and is not, and yet is* ; that the time of the end denotes the erpiration of the 1260 years t; that the apocalyptic dragon cannot mean pagan Rome, but must typify the devil 1; that the period of 1260 years, or
p. 426-428. The Archdeacon argues very forcibly against those who with Mede would ascribe the fulfilment of this in ysterious phrase to the age in which the vision was delivered. “ These words of the angel, describing
the beast, He was, and is not, and yet is, appear to me in no wise appli“ cable to the tyranny seated at Rome at the time of the vision, when the
angel spake them. This was the time of the Emperor Domitian, when a " cruel persecution raged against the Church, when St. John' himself was
actually suffering banishment in Patmos, for the word of God and the tes"timony of Jesus. Such a time can in no wise agree with the representation " that the beast was, and is not. It is therefore probable, that the time, in " wliich the beast is said to have been, and not to be, and yet to be, is the o time when he ariseth again after his wound, to exercise dominion under " the direction of the harlot. This time was not arrived when St. John saw " the vision in Patmos : but, though future in this sense, it was present in “ another, as belonging to the vision then under exhibition : for the beast was then present in exhibition before St. John, and in the act of re
ascending to power. This will appear more probable to those, who read “ forward from this passage to the end of the 8th verse, where the admi. o ration of the inhabitants of the earth is spoken of as yet future ;, and yet ". this admiration is fixed upon this same object--the beast which was, and “ is not, and yet is."
7 p. 281.
* This point is excellently discussed by the Archdeacon. “On consulting “ the writings of the commentators most approved in this country, I find, " that by the dragon is generally understood the pagan and persecuting power
of Imperial Rome. But, I trust, a few observations will shiew the fallacy < of this notion.
• Where an interpretation is expressly given in the vision, as in ch. i. 20; (« v. 6,9; xvii. 7 ; that interpretation must be used as the key to the mys“ tery, in prefereuce to all interpretations suggested by the imagination of
man. Now in the 9th verse of this chapter (Rev. xii.). such an interpre“ tation is presented; the dragon is there expressly declared to be that an“ cient serpent called the devil; known by the name of Alaboros in the Greek, « and of Satan in the Hebrew ; who deceiveth the whole world. Here are " his names, and his acknowledged character. No words can more com
pletely express them. No Roman emperor, nor succession of emperors,