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It is probable that a concussion of the earth, accompanying this subterraneous fire, shall dam up the Tiber, so that having no issue to the sea, it shall reducethe groundin the neighbourhood of Rome to a lake or morals, while the hills of Rome shall appear as islands in the midst of the morafs, covered with ruinous palaces, and these palaces inhabited by every unclean beast and bird. This I infer from the frequent allusions to the fall of Sodom and Gomorrah, the mention made of the wild beasts of the islands, and such birds as haunt marshy grounds only'.
bituminous and sulphurous foil. There have even at “ Rome been eruptions of fubterraneous fire, which have “ consumed several buildings, so that the fuel seemeth to “ be prepared, and watch only for the breath of the “ Lord to kindle it.” Newton's Diff. on Proph. Vol. iii.
(1) I cannot doubt that the fulphurous shower which destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah was accompanied by a concussion of the earth, which shut up the passage by which the river Jordan formerly issued from the plain, so that the water driven back, formed the lake Asphaltites, or Dead Sea ; and we learn from history, that the river Euphrates being diverted from its channel by Cyrus, in order to enter by it into the city, was never afterwards properly reftored, so that the country in the eighbourhood of Babylon,
“ the glory of kingdoms, the beauty of the “ Chaldeans excellency, shall be as when God i overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah. It shall
never be inhabited, neither shall it be dwelt “ in from generation to generation.-But wild “ beasts of the desert shall lie there ; and their " houses shall be full of doleful creatures ; and “ owls shall dwell there, and fatyrs shall dance " there. And the wild beasts of the islands “ Thall cry in their defolate houses, and dra“ gons in their pleasant places,” Ifa. xiii. 19.
6. But the cormorant and the bittern shall possess it ; the owl also and the raven shall u dwell in it: and he shall stretch out upon it - the line of confusion, and the stones of emp“ tiness.—And thorns shall come up in her pa“ laces, nettles and brambles in the fortresses " thereof; and it shall be an habitation of dragons, and a court for owls.
The wild beasts " of the desert shall also meet with the wild “ beasts of the islands, and the fatyr shall
cry to his fellow; the screech owl also shall “ rest there, and find for herself a place of rest. “ There shall the great owl make her nest, and
in proces of time, became one great morass. Now, the allusions 10 Sodom and Gomorrah being literally fulfilled in the fate of ancient Babylon, afford at least ground for conjecture, that they shall hold true in the destruction of Papal Rome.
lay and hatch, and gather under her shadow ; " there shall the vultures also be gathered,
every one with her mate. Seek ye out of the “ book of the Lord, and read; no one of these " shall fail, none shall want her mate : for my " mouth it hath commanded, and his Spi“ rit it hath gathered them. And he hath cast " the lot for them, and his hand hath divided “ it unto them by line : they shall possess it for
ever, from generation to generation shall they dwell therein,” Isa. xxxiv. 11.-17.
" And " Edom shall be a desolation: every one that
goeth by it, shall be astonished, and shall hiss " at all the plagues thereof. As in the over" throw of Sodom and Gomorrah, and the “ neighbour cities thereof, saith the Lord: no
man shall abide there, neither shall a son of “ man dwell in it,” Jer. xlix. 17, 18. “ Thereo fore the wild beasts of the desert, with the wild " beasts of the islands shall dwell there, and the
owls shall dwell therein : and it shall no more “ be inhabited for ever; neither shall it be “ dwelt in from generation to generation. As " God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah, and " the neighbour cities thereof, saith the Lord : “ fo shall no man abide there, neither shall any
son of man dwell therein,” Jer. I. 39, 40. " And Babylon shall become heaps, a dwelling place for dragons, an astonishment and an
“ hisling, without an inhabitant,” chap. li. 37. “ I saw another angel come down from heaven,
having great power; and the earth was light“ ened with his glory. And he cried mightily “ with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great “ is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habita« tion of devils, and the hold of every foul spi“ rit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful “ bird,” Rev. xviii. 1, 2.'
All these expressions imply a total and perpetual, not a partial and temporary dissolution. But to remove all dubiety, the Apostle John fays, “ A mighty angel took up a stone like a
great millstone, and cast it into the sea, say. “ ing, Thus with violence shall that great city
Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found “ no more at all. And the voice of 'harpers « and musicians, and of pipers, and trumpeters, • shall be heard no more at all in thee ; and no “ craftsman, of whatsoever craft he be, shall be
(1)“But if this fall of Babylon was effected by Totila “ king of the Ostrogoths, as Grotius affirms, or by Ala“ rick, king of the Visigoths, as the Bishop of Meaux a contends, how can Rome be fáid ever since to have been 6 the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul “ fpirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird, « unless they will allow the Popes and Cardinals to merit “ these appellations ?" Newton's Disl. on Proph. vol. iii.
“ found any more in thee; and the sound of a 6 millftone shall be heard no more at all in thee. " And the light of a candle shall shine no more « at all in thee ; and the voice of the bride.
groom, and of the birde, shall be heard no more at all in thee," Rev. xviii. 21.–23.'
The reasons of this signal catastrophe appears from the Old Testament prophets, and from the Apocalypse, to be pride and luxury.
(6 And “ thou saidít, I shall be a lady for ever; so that " thou didst not lay these things to thy heart, “ neither didst remember the latter end of it.
Therefore hear now this, thou that art given " to pleasures, that dwellest carelessly, that fay" est in thine heart, I am, and none else besides
me; I shall not sit as a widow, neither shall 66 I know the loss of children. But these two
(1) Paftorini, a late Catholic writer, in his interpretation of the Apocalypse, applies these verses to Constantinople ; while he allows that Babylon, in the whole of the chapter preceding them, signifies Rome. As this opinion rests on his bare assertion, and is obviously contrary to the connection of the paisage, it deserves not a serious reflection; but the affertion clearly shews, that he considered the words as inapplicable to any judgment already infliated on Rome; and indeed, to suppose them accomplished, while Rome exists and flourishes aster, is to trifle with the expreslions of scripture, and to play on the human underftanding