Page images
PDF
EPUB

cannot suppose it to be the antitypical Tyre, whicir does then perish.

Hitherto X. " That vo one is to be paid for his services in war, be. " cause properly there can be no other motive for war than

religion. War then is the service of God: shall a man be paid for serving God?

• There are many other less consequential opinions held “ by these Puritans, but which all revert to some one or " other of the foregong. They consider every one in their

sect, who falls'in warring against the infidels, as being im"mediately permitted to enjoy the delights of Paradise, The Wahabees not only regard a regular war against their broe “ ther Mussulmans of a different sect as incumbent upon them,

but each indiviciual Wahabee esteenis it a meritorious àet to

plunder and murder any other individual Arab he may meet * with; and, in consequence of this opinion, the. Wahabees " have been a terrible annoyance to the caravans passing the 5 desart.

“ The said Shaik-Abdul- Aziz can bring into the (feld & " band of these enthusiasts amounting to hear 50,000; mostly

mounted on camels."

This account does not appear to charge the Wahabees with absolute infidelity, as is the case with the others. However this may be, it is a remarkable circumstance, that, as the two apostasies of Popery and Mohammedism arose together in the same year and attained their zenith at the same period; só Voltaire should have begun systematically to propagate his intidel principles in the west, exactly about the same time that Abdul-Waheb or Moolah-Mohammed began to advance nearly the same doctrines in the east, if there be foundation for the charge of infidelity brought against them. And, even if there be not, certainly an attack both upon Popery and Mokammcdism, as professed by the different votaries of each superstition, will have begun to be made, at the same era, both in the west and in the east. So many curious coincidences serve to confirm my opinion, that Daniel's two little horns are

any

Hitherto the question has only been answered negatively, we must now endeavour to answer it

positively, the two apostasies of Popery and Mohammedism, and that the year 606 is the most probable date of the 1260 years.

Should the sect of the Wahabees contidue to increase in numbers, Muhammedism must eventually fall by mere force of opinion. They, who have adopted the almost simple theism and in many respects rational theism of the Wuhabees, will not long be prevailed upon to acknowledge Mohammed as an inspired prophet, if indeed they have not already rejected the belief of his inspiration. Thus, if the votaries of Islamism gradually abandon it, we may easily conceive how, at the time of the end, it will be broken without hand.

I think it right to observe that this general abandonnient does not seem likely to take place immediately, which affords an additional argument in favour of my opinion, that the 1260 years have not yet expired. The gentleman, to whom I was indebted for the preceding account of the Wahabees, observes, “ I do not believe, that in any instance their principles have “ extended beyond Arabia. In Arabia the converts to those “ principles were increasing as rapidly as the very rapid con

quests of the professors of them; and I believe it was thought by the Turks themselves, that all hope was lost of

entirely crushing this new heresy. I have been told, that “ some of the most enlightered among the Turks are secretly

convinced, that the founder of their religion was an impostor; but every motive would tend to preserve the se.

crecy of such conviction, and the people in general are most “ undoubtedly as fanatically attached to their faith as ever. “ The same hatred of Christianity prevails among them: and " this, I imagine, would be the greatest obstacle to the con

quest of their country.

*“ Come out of her, my people, that ye be not parlakers of her sits, and that ye receive not of her plagues” (Rev. xvii. 4.). llence apparently we must conclude, that all such

D 3

[ocr errors]

as

positively. Since we have no sufficient ground to think, that the list, which Daniel and St. John give us, of those enemies of God, who are destined to fall at the close of the 1260 years is imperfect; we are obliged to conclude, that the antitypical T'yre, which Ezekiel represents as falling at the very same period or the period of the restoration of Israel, is some one or other of those enemies. But how can the maritime Tyre be a fit type of any of those nations, when they are all (even according to my own interpretation) continental powers, and when their last expedition into Palestine (even according to iny own opinion) is to live undertaken by land, because the decided superiority of the great naval state prevents them from undertaking it by sea ?

To this I answer, that either a nation or a thing may be used as a type of direct opposites, according to the light in which they are viewed by the sacred writer who uses them. Thus the serpent and the lion are at once types of Christ and Satan, of the clean and the unclean: and yet no confusion arises from this circumstance, because the context always sufficiently shews the light in which the writer views his type. When we are directed to look up to the serpent in the wilderness for salvation, we are in no danger of supposing that the devil is meant; we at once see plainly; that the wisdom of

as do come out of her will not receive of her plagues; provided only they have refrained from defiling, theniselves with the atheistical abominations of Antichrist. See 2 Pet. ii. 18.

the

the serpent was the only characteristic in the mind of the Holy Spirit, and therefore that the serpent considered in that point of view was a fit type of the divine Wisdom, the eternal Logos. On the other hand, when the tempter appears under the form of a serpent, and when St. John styles the devil that old serpent, we are in as little danger of supposing that Christ is meant; we immediately see, that the bad qualities of the serpent were alone in the contemplation of the writer; bis perverted wisdom or his cunning whereby he deceiveth the whole world, the deadly malignity of his poison, and the subtilty with which he attacks his uvsuspecting prey. In a similar manner, when Christ is styled the lion of the tribe of Judah; the courage, the strength, the activity, the generosity, of that animal are solely considered. And, when the devil is described as a rouring and a ramping lion going about in search of whom he may devour; the ferocity of the lion, his rapacity, his mode of lying in wait for his prey, the suddenness with which he springs upon it, the wonderful strength with which he holds it in his gripe, bis prowling about in darkness, are as evidently his only properties which engage the attention of the writer * This being

.the

* " As clean and unclean animals are not realities of good and evil, but only figures ; nothing hinders, but that, lihe “ other figures, they should signify ditterently, when under

some different acceptation : as the same object, according “ to every new direction of the light that falls upon it, will project a different shadow.

[ocr errors]

the case, Tyre may be used as a type either of a great commercial nation of faithful worshippers, or of a great superstitious empire which drives an iniquitous traffic in indulgencies, pardons, relics, and such like trumpery; just as the writer considers the vast commerce of ancient Tyre literally or mystically. In what light he does consider it in any particular instance, we must be taught by the context.

“ My meaning will be best explained by some examples " borrowed from the style of the Holy Scripture. Watcr, as

a medium of purification, is a fit image of the Spirit of rege" neration in baptism, which washes away sin: but, in its capacity of overflowing bodies with its waves, it becomes a figure of affliction, destruction, and even death itself. The

same water, which bore up the ark of Noah in safety, and “ exhibited a pattern of the salvation of the Cliristian church, “ destroyed the world of the ungodly. The light of the sun is e beneficial to the whole creation, and is emblematic of that divine light of life, which enlightens every man that cometh “ into the world: but the parching heat of its rays is used in “ the parables of Christ to express the fiery trial of persecution and tribulation for the truth's sake.

“ With the same variety of allusion, and without any darger “ of impropriety or confusion in the language of Scripture, “ the livn, considered as a hungry and blood-thirsty beast of

prey, is an image of the devil, who as a roaring lion walketh about seeking whom he may derour. But, in regard to his “ strength, power, generosity, and the majesty of bis counte

nance, he is highly expressive of the regal character, and is " therefore assumed to denote the power and majesty of Christ

himself, the lion of the tribe of Judah.Jones's Works, vol. ill. p. 108.

The

« PreviousContinue »