Bookshelf/ Vol.I / Vol. IV. Part VI. Contents. Chapter I. 1. 2. 3. II. 1. 2. 3. III. 1. 2. 3. IV. 1. 2. V. 1. 2. Appendix I. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. II. 1a. 1b. 2a. 2b. 2c. 3. 4. III 1. 2a. 2b.




Such was the state pretty much of Apocalyptic interpretation among Protestants and Romanists, in England, Germany, and the Papal European States respectively, when the French Revolution burst like a thunderclap upon the startled world. In every way a mighty epoch, whether as regards the world of politics, of society, of religion, or of mind, it could scarcely but constitute an important epoch also in prophetic interpretation. - Among Protestant expositors of the historic school, in England more especially, such as followed more or less in the track of their Protestant precursors, of Pareus, Foxe, Mede, Vitringa, Daubuz, and the Newtons, the impression was very strong and general that this was probably the commencement of that selfsame last revolution, or earthquake of the 7th Trumpet, which Sir. I. Newton had so confidently anticipated as in his time near at hand: [1] and of which, among other grand results proclaimed by the heavenly voices at the sounding of the Trumpet, one was to be the establishment of Christ’s reign on the earth. - As our review of Apocalyptic interpretation in this momentous æra is to be extended in this my 5th Edition as far down as the present epoch of 1862, and, in England at least, very notable points of change and innovation occurred in the more or less current interpretation after its first half had past away, it will be well, I think, to consider it under the division of two separate Sections; the 1st from the epoch of the outbreak of the Revolution in 1789 to the peace of Paris, and cessation of the military occupation of France by the Allies about 1820; the 2nd from 1820 to 1862.

§ 1. FROM 1789 TO 1820.

I. And, before referring to the English Apocalyptic expositions of this period, I must beg to direct my reader’s attention to two expositors of the Romish connection, on whom, in other countries and under very different circumstances, the millennial question had forced itself near about the same time as pre-eminently the important one: not without new views (at least for Romanists) about the predicted apostacy, Antichrist, and Babylon, which made and still make their Treaties doubly remarkable. I allude to the French Père Lambert, and the Spanish Jesuit Lacunza; the latter better known by his assumed Jewish appellative  of Ben Ezra.

1. The Père Lambert was, I believe, a native of Provence, in the south of France. He belonged to the Dominican Order, and died at Paris in 1813. His prophetic book which I refer to, entitled “Exposition des Predictions et des Promesses faites à l’ Eqlise pour les derniers temps de la Gentilité,” appears to have been commenced before the end of the 18th century. [2] But it was not completed till 1804, or a little later; [3] and was at length published in 1806 at Paris, in two small 12mo volumes. It has not, I beleive, been reprinted.

The title of the Treatise explains in a measure its main subject and object. Considering attentively what then was, and what had been previously, ever since the first formation of the Christian Church, - the then all general corruption and infidelity, even among profest Catholic Christians, so as to reduce it to a mere “phantom Christianity,” [4] and manner in which in the ages previous Christianity had been almost ever exhibited in corrupted form by its professors, been conquered and triumphed over moreover in many countires by Mahommedanism, and in regard of the number of its adherents been ever left by Heathenism in a comparatively small minority, - it was felt by Lambert that a skeptic might well sneer at Christ’s mission as a failure, and at the promises of his Church’s universal establishment on earth in all purity and blessedness as little better than falsehood: [5] i.e. supposing the Roman Catholics’ generally received views of prophecy respecting the millennium, and the only yet remaining future of the Church and to the world, to be correct. [6] For, as to the millennial Apocalyptically figured reign of the saints it was, according to those views, nothing but the Church’s or individual Christians’ very partial successes, such as had been accomplished since the apostles’ first preaching of the gospel. [7] And, as to the future, all that was anticipated was Antichrist’s 3 1/2 years’ manifestation and reign on Satan’s loosing: and that then, for some very brief term after Antichrist’s destruction, just before the world’s ending, (a term answering perhaps to Daniel’s 45 days,) Dan. 12:11-13:  “And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days. 12: Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days. 13: But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days”), the conversion of the Jews and whole Gentile world have its fulfillment; but only to come and pass away, (together with the world’s destruction and final judgment,) as rapidly almost as a flash of lightning. [8] So the usual process of Scripture investigation was gone through by Lambert, and is in this Treatise set forth before his readers, by which so many both before and after him have been convinced that the Apocalyptic millennium of the saints’ reign on earth, and corresponding Old Testament promises times of blessedness, are yet to come: - how that they are to be introduced by Christ’s second personal advent; the destruction of Antichrist with his apostate Church and Babylon, and resurrection of Christ’s departed saints and martyrs accompanying: and that then, the Jews’ conversion having taken place coincidently, the earthly Church now extended over the whole earth is to flourish under the rule of Christ and his saints gloriously; Jerusalem being the new center of light and unity, accordantly with with the multitudinous prophecies of Jerusalem’s destined future glory and blessedness: and this not for 1000 years only, but a much longer period; the Apocalyptic 1000 years being probably “prophetic years,” perhaps sabbatic, perhaps Jubilian, each of 7 or 50 years. [9] - The development of this argument occupies the greater part of Père Lambert’s book. [10]

But what the apostasy, Antichrist, and Babylon, so to be destroyed at Christ’s second coming, introductorily to the promised establishment of the Christian Church in its purity and glory over the earth? Again, how the transference of its center of unity from Rome, St. Peter’s see, to Jerusalem? On these points Father Lambert propounded views new and strange for a Romanist; except in so far as Lacunza might have anticipated him. The Apocalyptic Babylon, he says, (confessedly the city of the seven hills,) did not symbolize, so as Bossuet would have it, Pagan Rome. In such case, besides other objections, [11] what reason was there for St. John to wonder at it with so great amazement? Nor again did it symbolize Rome as falling into some quite new and infidel apostasy, at the end of the world, and this after expelling the Pope, so as Ribera and Bellarmine would explain the prophecy. [12] The Apocalyptic symbols sufficiently indicated a professedly Christian body; and history also told too plainly that Papal Rome and the Papal priesthood might well, by only further developing the corruptions which already in part had been, answer to the prophetic indications. It was the conviction on Lambert’s mind that the mystery of iniquity spoken of by St. Paul was a principle, or principles, of corruption and evil within the professing Church, sown even in the apostle’s days: that this had gone on ever working more and more influentially within it through the centuries that followed, being nourished by all the abuses, vices, errors, and impieties that were admitted into the Gentile Church, as those centuries went on; and was at length to become the consummated “apostasy,” by infecting the whole body of Gentile Christendom, headed by a personal and Papal Antichrist. [13] But not without a series of previous Popes having preceded and prepared for him, by exhibiting and acting out gradually more and more the spirit of Antichrist. The Prince of Tyre prophesied of in Ezekiel evidently symbolized this Papal Antichrist; in respect both of his original state, and that into which he would fall by corruption. Endowed with authority at first as one seated in God’s seat, and on the holy mountain, (i.e. in the Church,) anointed too with the holy ointment, and adorned with precious stones, like the Jewish High Priest, this Prince was depicted as at length being seduced to say in heart, “I am God;” to usurp God’s honor, worship, and prerogatives; and then, abandoned to avarice, becoming a “marchand,” and giving himself up to the amassing of gold and silver. Such precisely had been the case in the Christian Church. “Le roi de Tyre n’est ici qu’un personnage allegorique, l’embleme d’une suite de ministres du Tres-Haut, qui succedent les uns aux autres, mais que le Prophete reunit et represente comme une seule personne moral; aui d’abord fidele à son ministere en viole ensuite tons les devoirs; et dont l’iniquité, montée par degres à son comble, . . est enfin punie avec eclat aux yeux de toutes les nations.” [14] Lambert sketches thereupon the change in the Roman Pontiff’s, from the piety of the earlier centuries to their manifold corruptions afterwards: - “the spirit of domination, the outrages often on the principle truths of Christianity, the avarice and traffic in holy things:” corruptions that had already taken deep root in the time of St. Bernard; [15] and which would assuredly bring down on the Papacy, as on the Prince of Tyre, God’s terrible vengeance. At length, in fine, it would be a Roman Pope, at the head of the consummated apostasy of Gentile Christendom; who, in heart an atheist, would as God, or God’s delegate, or God’s Christ, sit in God’s temple, i.e. (so as Hilary has said) in professedly Christian Churches: [16] exacting divine honors from men on pain of death; and so fulfilling alike what was predicted of the Man of Son, and of the Apocalyptic Beast: [17] all this being done in Babylon, or the Papal Rome; of which Lambert, in a separate Chapter, traces in similar mode the falling away from Primitive sanctity into antichristian apostasy. [18] One grand help to this Papal Antichrist’s subjection of men’s minds would be his false miracles; more especially, Lambert suggests, his apparent resurrection from the state of death: (accordantly both with the symbol of one of his heads being wounded to death, yet reviving; and with his two-fold designation also as the Beast from the sea and Beast from the abyss, which was, and is not, and yet shall be:) a miracle, observe, apparent, not real; for God cannot do miracles in support of a lie. [19] - Of the near approach of the consummation, and of Antichrist, Lambert says it was to be expected that God would give some signal warning signs; so as he had done before the destruction of Jerusalem, and before the rebellion of Mahomet. [20] And one such striking sign Lambert thought to see in the terrible infidelity of the half century previous, and horrors of the French Revolution. [21] Moreover, besides this, there was to be expected quite another in the coming and preaching of Elijah, to Gentile Christendom as well as Jews: and the result of being rejected and slain (just as Christ had formerly been) by united sentence of ecclesiastical and civil powers; “par tout le corps de la Gentilité, et par la foule des prêtres et des pasteurs, presidés par le premier Pontife de la religion:” [22] this Elias being in fact one of the two Apocalyptic witnesses; and the great city of his death, not Rome, but Paris, where the truth and Christ had been so markedly crucified. [23] Thereupon would follow the consummation of judgment: the Gentile Christendom be destroyed by fire; [24] the scepter revert to Jerusalem; (for the localization of the Church’s center of unity in Rome was but for the Gentile interval;) and in the converted and blessed state of all that is now heathen, connectedly with converted Israel, the magnificent symbolizations of Isaiah’s and St. John’s new heaven and new earth have their realization. [25]

Such is an abstract of Lambert’s main views of prophecy, as unfolded in his Treatise. There are observable further a few individual points of Apocalyptic explanations. In the 6th Seal, Apoc. vi., he would have the elemental convulsions to be taken literally, as signs in heaven and earth before the consummation: [26] in Apoc. viii. the half-hours silence is a brief respite before the last fearful Trumpet judgments: [27] in Apoc. x. the seven thunders mean the mysteries of Christ’s judgments, now secret, but to be revealed during Christ’s reign on earth. [28] Again it is to be observed that, though not of the historic school of interpretation, he yet more than once speaks agreeably with it, of the French Revolution as like a trumpet-voice of alarm, “the last trumpet’s alarm,” to Christendom; [29] also of Christians as at the time when he wrote participating in the song of the harpers by the fiery sea, introductorily to the Vials outpouring in Apoc. xv.; [30] and, as elsewhere noted, of the then reigning infidelity as an ulcer in Christendom; [31] all exactly in agreement with the symbols of the 7th Trumpet’s Vial-preparation song, and 1st Vial, as explained by me. [32] But the main views are those which I have detailed above: - the terrible approaching destruction of the Gentile Church, as utterly, hopelessly apostate, under the headship of its Papal Antichrist; [33] and its blessed renovation, under Christ’s own headship and that of his risen saints, connectedly with converted Israel.

My readers may well wonder with me how, with such views of the Papacy, the Père Lambert could himself have continued in communion with it. It would seem as if he dated its apostasy from the faith somewhat later than prophecy as well as history indicates. Now the prophetic clause, “Only he that letteth shall let until he be taken away,” was a prophetic indication, as all the early Fathers explain to us, that the removal and division into ten of the old Roman empire was to be the chronological sign and epoch of the development of the Man of Son. But Lambert escapes from that chronological indication by a very curious different translation of the clause. Kai nun to katecon oidate, eiv to apokalufQhnai auton. . . monon o katecwn arit ewv ek mesou genhtai. This, says Lambert of the first clause, means, “Vous savez à quoi il tient, ou, ce qui est necessaire pour qu’il paroisse daus son temps:“ and of the second: “Que celui qui sait (o katecwn) maintenant en quoi consiste ce mystere, le retienne bien, jusqu’a  que ce mystere sorte de son secret.” [34] So the to katecon  and o katecwn are taken in quite different senses; and the ek mesou genhtai in a sense the Greek phrase will not bear. It will be felt by my classical readers that Lambert has been but little successful in escaping from the difficulty of this clause. [35]

2. Lacunza.

Lacunza, as I learn from the Preface to Mr. Irving’s Translation of his Book, was born at Santiago in Chili in the year 1731; in 1747 became a member of the Jesuit college in that city; and there continued till the expulsion of the Jesuits from the Spanish South American States: whereupon he came to Europe; settled finally at Imola, a little south of Bologna in Italy; and there died suddenly in 1801, while on a solitary walk, according to his habit, by the riverside. [36] His great work on The coming of Messiah in Glory and Majesty, (written under the assumed name of Ben Ezra, a Jewish convert to Christianity, [37] in consequence probably of the ten existing prejudice against his Order,) was written as early as the first outbreak of the great French Revolution. For the Fra Pablo de la Conception, of the Carmelite Convent in Cadiz, writing a criticism on it in 1812, speaks of having first read the work in manuscript, about 21 years before, or about the year 1791 [38] . of which Lacunza complains. [39] Judging from the admiration it at once excited in his mind, Fra Pablo’s copy was probably a complete one. And both the fact of the laborious manuscript multiplication of these copies, and the strong statement by the learned critic above referred to as to the impression made by it on is own mind, unite to show that it excited very considerable interest as soon as attention was called to it. When however the Work was first printed and published does not appear. Lucunza’s own observations in the Preface imply an expection that in its then completed form it would soon come into general circulation; [40] of course, I presume, through the medium of printing. Yet, according to the notices that I find in Irving’s translation, it seems to have been first printed and published at Cadiz in 1821; [41] i.e. eleven years after Lacunza’s death. Subsequently in 1816 another Edition of 1500 copies in its original Spanish was printed in London, in four 8vo Volumes, under the direction of the Agent for the Buenos Ayres Government; which Edition seems to have been wholly transhipped from England. [42] - At the time of its presumed first printing, in 1812, Cadiz was under the government of the Cortez, restoration of Ferdinand, and reinstitution of the Inquisition, intolerance returned: and Lacunza’s book was classed among the Libri probibiti in the Roman Index, and the circulation as far as possible supprest. [43] So the book became rare. Surreptitiously, however, individual copies were obtained and read in Spain: [44] and moreover an abridgment was made; [45] and whether in the original, or in a French translation, was carried into and much read in France. [46] At length in the year 1826 a copy brought by an English Clergyman from Spain was communicated to the well-known and eloquent minister of the Scotch Church in London, Mr. Irving; and by him a translation made into English, which soon made the work extensively and very influentially known and read in England. [47]

Turning to the Treatise itself, its author’s main strength and argument is of course directed to the establishment of his professedly main great subject; viz. Christ’s premillennial advent, [48] and subsequent glorious universal reign on earth: the Jews having, he supposed, been previously converted, and brought to recognize the Messiah Jesus. And to the masterly and convincing manner in which he has done this, we have not the testimony of English critics only like Mr. Irving, but that of his learned Spanish critic, Fra Pablo: - “These two points,” says he, notwithstanding all a Romanist’s natural prejudices, “seem to me to be theologically demonstrated.” [49] It was by resorting to Holy Scritpture itself, when utterly disappointed and disgusted at the absuridities and incongruities of the best known Roman Catholic expositors of the millennial prophecy, that the view broke upon him in all its grandeur and simplicity: and, like Lambert, he strongly urges investigators, those of the priesthood more expecially, to resort as he had himself done to the Book of God, which had so long and so generally been well nigh consigned to oblivion. [50] On this his great subject however there is no need of my sketching his arguments, any more than in the case of Lambert. They are the same that are now well known, and widely received.

But what his views as to Antichrist; a subject necessarily connected with the Millennium, as being he whose destruction by Christ’s coming was to precede and introduce it? Here Lacunza makes reference to Daniel, as well as to the Apocalypse. And, in commenting on the former, he offers some original and curious views as to the symbols of the quadripartite image, and of the four wild Beasts from the sea. The image’s golden head, he says, included both the Babylonish and the Persian empires, considered as one, because Babylon was retained as one of the Persian capitals: the breast of silver was the Macedonian empire: the brazen thighs figured that of the Romans, long since come to an end; the iron ten-toed legs that of the Roman-Gothic professedly Christian kingdoms of Western Europe. [51] At the ending time of these the stone without hands, or empire of Christ and his saints, would utterly destroy the image in that its last form; henceforth itself becoming the universal empire on earth. How near to the generally received Protestant interpretation, and I doubt not the true one, is Lacunza’s of the ten toes! - As to the four Beasts his idea is as novel as unsatisfactory. They meant four religions; viz. Idolatry, Mahommedanism, Pseudo-Christianity, (with its four heads of heresy, schism, hypocrisy, worldly-mindedness,) and the Antichristian Deism already then unfolding itself in the world. For Antichrist meant, not an individusl, but that embodied principle, power, or moral body, which “solvit Christum,” (so the Vulgate of (1 John iv. 3, “And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.”,) dissolves Christ in the Church. [52] - At this point Lacunza stops a while to dissect, and expose the absurdity of, those ideas of Antichrist which were usually received among Romanists; as if he was to be an individual Jew, of the tribe of Dan, born in Babylon, received by the Jews as Messiah, thereupon establishing his kingdom at Jerusalem, and with 10 or 7 kings held subject, in fulfillment of the Beast’s 7 heads and 10 horns: an argument well worth perusal and consideration, by all such Protestant expositors as are inclined to adopt the same strange hypothesis. The Antichrist, or Apocalyptic Beast, he then traces from its first existence in the germ, as the mystery of iniquity even in St. Paul’s days, [53] within the Church, and side by side with Christ’s true servants; and which had come down as a body more and more corrupt and apostate, century after century; till now at length perfected in apostasy. The second Apocalyptic Beast has been with great reason, he says, explained as the false prophet of Antichrist: with the mistake however of supposing him one individual person, perhaps “an apostate bishop;” [54] whereas it is the body of “our priesthood” that is meant by the emblem. [55] His name and number Lacunaz inclines to think arnoume: [56] being evidently not so strong in Greek as in Latin. As to the Apocalyptic Harlot, (“I would wholly omit this,” says he, “did I not fear to commit treason against truth,”) it is not Rome Pagan, but apostate Rome Christian and Papal; drunken at length in vain carnal self-security, when on the very eve (so Lacunza judged) of her utter tremendous destruction. It is objected that she is the spouse of Christ? So too was old Jerusalem. But, on the consummation of its apostasy, though without a heathen idol in her, she fell, and fell remedilessly. [57]

In his general view of the Apocalypse Lacunza is a futurist. He construes the seven-sealed Book opened by the Lamb as the Book of the Father’s Covenant; and the giving it into his hand as the act of investiture, whereby he is constituted King and Lord of all. [58] The visions of the Seals next following are therefore, I presume, understood by him with reference to the times of consummation. But he does not enter on them particularly. He discusses however the vision of the sun-clothed woman in Apoc. xii., in the same general Jewish and futurist point of view; with much that is ingenious and novel in his exposition. The woman is the Zion of Isaiah, God’s ancient spouse, long cast off and sorrowful, but now clothed in beautiful garments; and at the precise crisis described by Old Testament prophets, “like a woman with child drawing near the time of her delivery.” She has already in a figurative sense conceived Jesus Christ in her womb; i.e. by believeing on him. But something more is needed; viz. to bring him to light, or publicly to manifest this conception by declaring for him; for “with the heart men believe unto righteousness, and with the lips confession is made unto salvation.” But difficulties, embarrassments, and persecutions here occur. Besides the world and devil, two-thirds also of the Jews probably oppose the believing third. She “cries out in pain.” Satan, the red Dragon, unable to prevent the conception, (which may probably have arisen from Elias’ preaching,) tries to hinder her delivery: i.e. “to hinder her from publicly professing her faith in Jesus.” [59] But in vain. The child is born; the confession is made. And then, so born in figure, he is caught up to God and his throne: a symbol answering to Daniel’s symbol of the Son of Man coming to the Ancient of Days to receive investiture of his kingdom; and corresponding too with that of his receiving the seven-sealed book of his investiture from Him that sate on the throne, in the earlier vision of the fifth chapter of the Apocalypse. [60] - But, if so, we must ask, what the sequel? And here in truth the weakness of Lacunza’s view of the vision appears. Messiah’s investiture by the Ancient of Days in Daniel is coincident with, or immediately consequent upon, the doom and destruction of the little horn Antichrist; not at an epoch preceding Antichrist’s reign and blasphemies. But in the vision of Apoc. xii., after the man-child’s being caught up to God’s throne, there is described a war in heaven as occurring; then the Woman’s fleeing into the wilderness, being furiously pursued thirther by the Dragon; and then next, but not till then, the raising up by the Dragon of the Antichristian Beast against the remnant of the Woman’s children that continue faithful. How can this order of events consist with Lacunza’s Judæo-futurist interpretation of the Vision? I see nothing in the details of his exposition to meet the difficulty. For he professedly makes all this persecution subsequent to Christ’s receiving investiture of the earth’s empire. And his identification of Michael’s warring in Apoc. xii. with Michael’s standing up for Daniel’s people in Dan. xii. only adds to the difficulty. [61] - Proceeding with the vision Lacunza describes the Woman, or Jewish Church, as taken to a quiet and sweet solitude, Moses and Elias furnishing the two wings of her escort; and being there taken care of by God, while the Dragon raises up the Beast against the faithful remnant of her children. [62] These Lacunza seems to identify, like myself, with the witnesses of Apoc. xi. For the two sackcloth-robed witnesses are not Enoch and Elias; but two religious bodies of faithful men protesting against the corruptions of the age, [63] i.e. the latter age, just before the Jews’ conversion. As to the place where the Antichristian Beast, after making war against them, kills them, i.e. the street of the great city, this is not meant of Jerusalem: (in fact Christ was crucified outside of, not within, the literal Jerusalem:) but of the whole world, and specially of professing Christendom. [64]

These, I believe, are the chief Apocalyptic explanations given by the soi-disant Ben Ezra, or Lacunza. I may add that, like myself, he considers Peter’s conflagration to be one introductory to the millennium, and moreover not universal: also that he explains the new heaven and earth of St. Peter and the Apocalypse (like Lambert and myself) to be millennial in their date of commencement.

Thus, in the Roman Catholic countries of France, Spain, Italy, there had already begun to sound forth a voice answering alike to that on the blast of the 7th Trumpet in the Apocalypse, which proclaimed the commencement of the judgments of the consummation of “those that had corrupted the earth,” and imminence of Christ’s coming kingdom: as also to that of the first Angel seen synchronically (as has been shown) flying in mid heaven, with the cry, “Fear God, for the hour of his judgments is come;” and to that recorded in Apoc. xviii., “Come out of her (Babylon), my people, that ye be not partakers of her plagues.” [65]

II. I now turn to England. - And here the names first of Galloway and Bicheno, then of Faber, Woodhouse, Cuninghame, and Frere, are perhaps the most notable; each one marked by certain peculiarities of exposition. The three last mentioned, having continued publishing from time to time on prophecy till the middle of the present century, constituted a link of connection between the first and second divisions of the still uncompleted great French Revolution æra

Mr. Galloway’s book is entitled “Brief Commentaries on such parts of the Revelation and other Prophecies, as immediately refer to the present times;” and was published in London in the year A.D. 1802. [66] He was himself, it seems, one of the Loyalists in our North American Colonies, who was forced to flee that country on the rebel States successfully accomplishing their war of revolution and independence. Nor, probably, was he wholly uninfluenced by this his previous history in regard of the feeling most prominently expressed throughout his Apocalyptical Commentary; viz. that of intense abhorrence of the revolutionary and infidel principles of Republican France. Hence his application to it of the symbol of the most hateful of all enemies of the Church prefigured in the Apocalypse; viz. that of the Beast from the Abyss, the slayer of Christ’s two faithful sackcloth-robed witnesses. To bring out this result, he thus in brief explains the structure of the prophecy and history intended by it; herein at first following most of his Protestant predecessors. The seven-sealed book contains the history of the Church generally, in its various vicissitudes of fortune; from its first partial triumphs in Apostolic times to its final and complete triumph at the consummation; the 6th seal symbolizing the overthrow of heathenism before it, in the Roman Empire, under the Constantinian Emperors. The seven Trumpets, which are the development of the seventh Seal, represent God’s judgments against the ten already corrupt and apostatizing Church; the four first depicting that of the Gothic invasions in the West; the 5th and 6th, or two first Woe-Trumpets, those of the Saracens and Turks in the East; which last-mentioned woes originated, according to the prophecy, with the opening of the pit of the abyss. Then, presently, comes Mr. Galloway’s peculiarity of historic application. The “little book” opened in the hand of the angel (Apoc. x.) being viewed by him, as in Mede’s scheme, as a separate, supplementary prophecy descriptive, for its main subject, of the treading down of the holy city, and history of Christ’s two witnesses during their days of sackcloth-robing, he notices the long-continued treading down for 1260 years of the holy city, or faithful Church of the Gentiles, as alike that by the long-dominant Mahometan power in the East, and the dominant Papal idolatrous power in the West; dating these from the nearly synchronic times of Phocas and Mahomet respectively. But the slaying of the two witnesses, which he supposes to symbolize the Old and New Testaments, is, he observes, at a later time, viz. near the end of the Witnesses’ 1260 years of sackcloth-robed witnessing; and to be accomplished by another new and terrible enemy than any before, viz. the Beast from the Abyss. This, says he, is the infidel power of atheistic, revolutionary France. The street of the great city in which they were slain, he explains to be Paris; the date of their death, about September 1792, when Christianity was abolished, the ignominious expulsion of the Christian clergy from France well-nigh completed, Christ declared an impostor, and atheism publicly professed by the French Government and nation. So for 3 1/2 years, answering to the 3 1/2 days of the Apocalyptic prophecy; at the end of which there was predicted the resuscitation of the two witnesses. And this was also fulfilled by the French Government decrees, passed in 1797, which declared free and full toleration thenceforward to all religions, true Protestant Christianity expressly included.

It does not need that I should say more of Mr. Galloway’s exposition; save only that, in conformity with the above explanation of the earlier Apocalyptic chapters, he explains the seven-headed Dragon, the Beast from the Sea, and Beast from the earth, in Apoc. xii., xiii., as respectively the earlier Pagan power, and the French infidel power; the Beast from the Sea, or Popedom, being that which had assigned to it the duration of 1260 years, which would be nearly covered by the interval from Phocas to the French Revolution. The name and number of the beast he makes Ludovicus, the most common title of Kings of France; the Latin numeral letters which make up 666 - I must just add that Mr. G. interprets the Millennium as in his days still future; and as to be introduced by, and to synchronize with, the personal reign of Christ and his saints on earth.

Very marked was the contrast of the feeling with which Mr. Bicheno marked the progress of the Revolution. His “Signs of the Times” in three parts, first published in 1793, and which came to its 6th edition in 1808, was his “Restoration of the Jews” in 1806. The title-page on Part i. of “The Signs of the Times” itself tells this feeling: - “Signs of the Times; or, The overthrow of the Papal tyranny in France, a prelude of destruction to Popery and Despotism, but of peace to mankind.” He looked in fact with something like religious complacency, from the very first, on the awful judgments that the Revolutionists seemed God’s appointed agents for inflicting on the Papal power which had been for ages the bloody persecutor of Christ’s saints, and enemy of Christ’s truth: judgments inflicted more especially in France on the social orders which had been its chief abettors, assistants; viz. the royalty, nobility, and the clergy. The same was his feeling afterwards when, in the course of the next 14 or 15 years, he saw the vials of God’s wrath poured out, through the same instrumentality, upon the German Empire which had been for many centuries as zealous a cooperator with the Papal Beast in the persecution of Christ’s truth and saints as royal Papal France itself. So strongly did Mr. B. feel the righteousness of God’s judgments, through the agency of the French Revolutionists, on those saint-persecuting nations of the Continent, that he could not suppress his protest against what he called “the ravings of Mr. Burke,” and the energetic anti-revolutionary course of action of our British Government: the rather as the Papal Antichrist’s removal was all that had to intervene before the Jews’ conversion, and the establishment of Christ’s kingdom on earth.

As it was on these two great subjects of the Papal tyranny of past ages, and the judgments of Popery then passing before the eyes of men, as prefigured in the Apocalypse, that he fournded his earnest and heart-stirring appeal to British Christians, (subjects copiously illustrated by him from time to time, alike the one and the other, from past and contemporaneous history,) it was not to be expected that his books would offer any very thoroughly digested scheme of Apocalyptic interpretation. Nor, consequently, do I deem it needful to refer particularly to what we find in them on this head. Suffice it to say that the 1260 destined years of the Papal Beast, prefigured in Apoc. xi., xiii., xvii., he views as beginning from Justinian’s decree, A.D. 529; and consequently, as ending in 1789 at the French Revolution. (1789 - 529 = 1260yrs.) The killing of Christ’s sackcloth-robed witnesses, or faithful saints protesting against Popery, he refers chiefly to the revocation of the Toleration-Edict of Nantes by Louis XIV in 1685; especially accompanied, as it was, by the nearly contemporary ruin of the cause of Hungrian Protestantism through the perseuctions of Papal Austria and banishment also of the faithful Vaudoies from their valleys in Papal Piedmont. But how, then, their resuscitation after 3 1/2 days? On this point, as no answering event presented itself in French history 3 1/2 years after that Revocation-Edict, or, indeed, till 100 years later, he suggests the singular notion that, instead of each day standing here for a year, it may stand for the thirty that make up a month; and consequently altogether figure the interval of 3 1/2 x 30 = 105 years. Then the prophecy would have its fulfillment in the free and full toleration of Protestantism in France, A.D. 1707, of which we have before spoken. - To Mr. B.’s interesting illustration of the Trumpets, and specially of the 3rd Trumpet in the desolating progress of Attila along the Rhine and Danube, I have had occasion to allude in my 1st Volume. [67] The 5th and 6th Trumpets he explains, like most other Protestant interpretors, of the Saracens and Turks. In the opened book of the light-bearing Angel Apoc. x., he sees no new and separate book of prophecy; but only a figuration of the dawning light of the Reformation, as beginning with Wickliff.

Finally, he applied our Lord’s prophecy (Matt. xxiv.) to the terrible commotions of those revolutionary times; inferred from the same prophecy, even in 1795, before Evangelic Missions from England had effectively begun, [68] that there would speedily follow the preaching of the Gospel throughout the world, even as with the sound of a Trumpet, to gather together Christ’s elect from the four winds, and that then the conversion and restoration of the Jews would begin. By the concurrent fulfillment of all which signs of the latter day, and “all those things coming to pass,” he judged that yet clearer and clearer light would accure to show that the consummation, and kingdom of God, were indeed nigh at hand.

Though, as I said, it was scarce to be expected that any well-digested general historical scheme of Apocalyptic interpretation would be furnished by Bicheno or Galloway, comparatively absorbed as were their thoughts and interests in that part of the prophecy which more immediately related to the events of the then present awful drama, as gradually unfolded more and more before their eyes, yet certainly it was not unreasonble to expect this (if the historical view of the prophecy was the right one) from the three well-known expositors who, as before stated, were their most prominent successors on the field of Apocalyptic interpretation, Messrs. Faber, Cuninghame, Frere: - considering, 1st, that they entered on their lucubrations at a later æra in the Revolutionary wars, after the first fury of the tempest had lulled, and the feelings consequently of English observers were less fearfully excited than before: and 2ndly, too, that they actually profest each one, after mature study, to give a comprehensive view of the whole Apocalyptic prophecy, including both its internal structure, and its historic explanation; i.e. down to the 7th Trumpet, and its partial evolution in the earlier Vials, which they all, like Galloway and Bicheno, regarded as fulfilled in the events of the Revolution. But, if such his expectation, the prophetic student of the æra under review was doomed to disappointment. In regard both of the fundamental structure of the prophecy, and many important details of its supposed previously accomplished fulfillment in history, the three expositors were seen to differ most widely one from the other. Said Mr. Faber of the internal structure of the prophecy: [69] - “The seven Trumpets are the evolution of the 7th Seal, as the seven Vials are of the 7th Trumpet; these three series constituting the main contents of the Seven-sealed Book, Apoc. iv., placed in the hand of the Lamb to open: while the Little opened Book, put into St. John’s hand by the heaven-descended Angel of Apoc. x., with the charge to prophesy again, is a distinct supplemental prophecy, inclusive of chapters x. - xiv., and containing within it the predictions of the four several great events to which, all alike, was to attach the duration of the 1260 years’ period; viz. that of the sackcloth-prophesying of Christ’s two witnesses, that of the Gentiles treading the Holy City, that of the Woman (the Church’)s exile in the wilderness, and that of the reign of the ten-horned Beast: [70] - a prophecy this chronologically parallel with the 5th and 6th or two first Woe Trumpets of the Seven-sealed Book, and which needed inscription in the new prophetic Book to show the parallelism. [71] Then further, as regarded the historic fulfillment of the Apocalypse, said Mr. F., “The series of the six first Seals carried down the history of the Roman Empire to the Constantinian Revolution, and overthrow of Heathenism in the 4th century; the six first Trumpets (evolving the 7th Seal) figured its subsequent history under the successive desolations of Goths, Saracens, and Turks; which last mentioned extended to the times of the 7th Trumpet, or French Revolution.” Besides which, Mr. F., in his Sacred Calendar, insisted on another very important point in the prophecy, viz. that concerning the ten-horned Beast’s two last heads, as historically elucidated by the concluding events of the great Revolutionary War: i.e. the termination of the sixth or Imperial Headship (which had been perpetuated, he judged, in the Byzantine, Frank, and Austrian dynasties) by the Austrian Monarch’s resignation of the Emperorship of the Holy Roman Empire in 1804; and Napoleon Bonaparte's institution into the Beast’s 7th headship by his assumption of the Emperorship, until struck down after a little space by the sword at Waterloo. But, as the head thus struck down was prophetically figured as resuscitated, so would the Napoleonic dynasty revive, as a new head of the Beast, or Roman empire: [72] (here Mr. F. indulged in prediction of the future:) no longer however thenceforth as a Papal power, but as a professedly infidel or atheistic power, the same as the “Willful King” of (Dan. xi. 36, “ And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvelous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done.”), and as St. John’s Antichrist, “denying the Father and the Son;” the destined head of the last antichristian confederacy, and opposer of the Jews’ restoration in Palestine; who, as described in Apoc. xix., would be met and destroyed fearfully by Christ in the final war of Armageddon.

So Mr. Faber. But by no means so, according to Mr. Cuninghame. “The Seals and Trumpets,” said he, “are chronologically parallel, each reaching from St. John’s time to the great earthquake symbolized alike in the 6th Seal and 7th Trumpet, immediately before the consummation; the Seals prefiguring the history of the Church, the Trumpets of the secular Roman Empire, including both East and West. As to the Little Book of Apoc. x., it is no new and separate book of Apocalyptic prophecy, so as Faber affirms; but only the 7th part of the seven-sealed Book, which at the epoch just preceding the French Revolution (the epoch of the rainbow-vested Angel’s descent) [73] might be considered “opened.” [74] Additionally, as regards the Roman Beast’s 7th and 8th heads, though at first advocating a Napoleonic view of them, Mr. C. had come on fuller reflection to discard it as altogether untenable; and mainly to acquiesce in, and adopt, the earler received Protestant view of the subject: regarding the old 6th Imperial Head as wounded to death by the sword of the Heruli, and revived in the decem-regal confederacy of Roman Popedom. [75]

So Mr. Cuninghame. But, “Not so,” again replied Mr. Frere to both Faber and Cuninghame. “The Seals depict the history of the Western Secular Roman Empire, from St. John’s time to the earthquake before the consummation; the Trumpets in parallel chronology, that of the Eastern Empire; while the Little Book of Apoc. x., which is a new and supplemental part of the Apocalyptic prophecy, (containing Chap. x. to xiv.,) depicts that of the Church, still in chronological parallelism with the former. Once more, as to the Roman Beast’s two last heads, Napoleon was the 7th head, cut down by the sword at Waterloo; and destined to revive again in some revival of the Napoleonic dynasty; only as a professedly infidel atheistic power, the last headship of the Roman Beast against the Church of Christ.” [76]

With such fundamental differences of view between these three expositors, (not to speak of those before them,) and others equally important might be added, (as e.g. concerning the two witnesses, and their death and resurrection, [77] ) who could wonder that considerate students of prophecy at the time should be sorely perplext; and many prepared in mind not only for distrust of these historic expositors, but distrust too as to the general truth of the historic system of interpretation: and this, notwithstanding the agreement of these expositors alike with each other, and with most previous Protestant historic expositors of note, on many most important points of accomplishment of the prophecy; especially as to the Gothic, Saracenic, and Turkish invastions of Roman Christendom, the Papacy as the great Antichristian power prefigured in Apoc. xi., xiii., xvii., and the French Revolution. The universal reception hitherto given to the historic system of Apocalyptic interpretation in England just kept back for a while the public development of such doubts. But, as the Continent was now open, and intercourse more and more cultivated with it, and its views in theological and prophetic as well as other literature better known, there could scarce but be soon a strengthening of them. Of all which more in the next Section.

As to the millennium, I must not conclude this Section without observing that here too our expositors fundamentally differed: Mr. Faber holding strongly to the truth of Whitby’s and Vitringa’s view, which till the close of the period now under review was all but universally known as upholders of the newly revived Patristic view of its premillennial Advent. I have already elsewhere noted (and who can wonder at it?) that the wide-spread hopes and expectations of the world’s speedly evangelization, which arose at this time out of the institution and progress of the various Bible and Missionary Societies shortly before formed in our own favored country, contributed powerfully at the time I speak of to make Whitby’s pre-advent millennary view more and more undoubtingly credited and popular. [78]



On which new æra, extending from about 1820 to the present time, I shall now make a few observations; and with them conclude this my History of Apocalyptic Interpretation.

Near about the same time than the two-fold battle began in England, which, I said, a sagacious observer might have already prognosticated: - 1st, as to the truth on the great millennial question; 2ndly, as to the truth of the general Protestant historic principle of Apocalyptic Interpretation.

1. As to the former point, the Treatise of Lacunza had not a little to do in the matter. Mr. Irving, the able and eloquent translator of the Treatise already spoken of, tells us, in his Preface to the Translation, of the circumstances under which he was brought to an acquaintance with it: - how in 1826, after he had been led to the recognition of Christ’s premillennial advent, and consequent personal reign on earth, as a great Scriptural truth, and under that impression had been preaching it in London with all earnestness, he found himself painfully insulated thereby from most of his brethren in the ministry, even as if he had been advocating a doctrine not only novel, but foolish, and almost heretical: and then, and in that painful state of insulation, had this elaborate Treatise by a writer of another Church and country brought before him; showing that he was anything but alone in the view, and so confirming his mind in it, and cheering his heart. And very soon he found that in England too similar convictions had been about the same time wrought upon the minds of one, and another, of the earnest investigators of prophetic Scripture. [79] The then recent reconstruction of the Society for the Conversion of the Jews, upon a more proper Church basis, [80] and with new life and vigor infused into its operations, contributed in no little measure to the promotion of these opinions. For, in searching the Scriptures, with a view to the answering of Jewish arguments against Christianity as a purely spiritual system, and Jewish arguments for the Messiah’s personal reign on earth and at Jerusalem, the evidence of Scripture was felt more and more by many to be in favor of the Jewish idea, rather than their own. And thus many of the earliest and warmest friends of the Jews’ Society became known, as the next ten years ran on, as premillennarians; e.g. Marsh, M ‘Neil, Pym, G. Noel, Lewis Way: more especially the last-mentioned noble-minded man, the munificent patron of the Jews’ Society; and whose often grand, though too discursive, Poem of the “Palingenesia,” still remains as record of the devotion of his whole mind and heart to the anticipation of his Master’s speedy personal advent, to assume the kingdom of a regenerated world. Then, too began Prophetic Journals, mainly on the premillennarian principle: first the Morning Watch; then, from 1833 to 1838, the Investigator. Individual Treatises moreover, on the same views, more or less influential, began also to multiply: I may specify particularly “Abdiel’s Letters,” by the Rev. J. W. Brooks, Editor of the Investigator; and the Prophetic Treatises of the much-loved Edward Bickersteth. - In fine, in the year 1844, the date of the first publication of my own Work on the Apocalypse, so rapid had been the progress of these views in England, that, instead of its appearing a thing strange and half-heretical to hold them, so as when Irving published his translation of Ben Ezra, the leaven had evidently now deeply penetrated the religious mind; and, from the ineffectiveness of the opposition hitherto formally made to them, they seemed gradually advancing onward to triumph.

So I say in England, to which country I have a particular respect in these my closing remarks. But let me not forget to remind my readers that, while such as the progress of the question in England, and while in France and Spain the works of Père Lambert and Lacunza remained (except in so far as the Inquisition might have suppressed the latter) a testimony each one to the same millennial view, there was one remarkable expression to much the same effect even in rationalistic Germany; and from a quarter whence it might little perhaps have been expected. I allude to Frederic Von Schlegel’s Lectures on the Philosophy of History, delivered in 1828 at Vienna, and soon after published, and most rapidly and widely circulated; the same of which an abstract has been given in the concluding Chapter of my Apocalyptic Commentary. It may be remembered that I there noticed Schlegel’s eloquently expressed opinion, as to the paliggenesia, and new heavens and earth of Isaiah and the Apocalypse, figuring not any mere Church triumph already accomplished over Roman Paganism, so as the Eichhorn school, and many Romanists too, (the latter with a view to the Papal supremacy in the world,) expounded the prophecy, nor again any heavenly state of blessedness for the saints, so as Bossurt: but a blessed personal reign of Christ on this our renewed earth; a reign future indeed, but probably near at hand: with the completed triumph of good over evil attending it, and to be introduced by his own personal advent. [81]

2. Next, as to any change or progress of opinion on the general subject of Apocalyptic interpretation, more especially in England, in the course of the same 20 or 25 years, from about 1820 to 1844.

It was in 1826, the self-same year as that of Irving’s Translation of Ben Ezra, that the first prophetic Pamphlet of the Rev. S. R. Maitland (now Dr. Maitland) issued from the press; its subject, an “Enquiry” into the truth of the then generally received year-day view of the 1260 days of Daniel and the Apocalypse: followed in 1829 and 1830 by “A Second Enquiry” into the same subject; a short Treatise on Antichrist; and a Defense of his former Pamphlets, in reply to the Morning Watch. In these, as is well known, he energetically assailed the whole Protestant application of the symbols of Daniel’s 4th Beast little horn, and the Apocalyptic Beast and Babylon, to the Roman Papacy, it being his idea that a quite different personal and avowedly infidel Antichrist was meant; asserted that the prophetic days were to be construed simply and only as literal days: and advocated an Apocalyptic exegetic scheme even yet more futurist than Ribera’s; seeing that he supposed the Evangelist St. John to plunge in spirit even in the very first chapter into “the day of the Lord,” or great epoch of judgment at Christ’s second coming and the consummation. - Nearly contemporarily with Dr. S. R. Maitland’s first Pamphlet Mr. Burgh published in Ireland on the Antichrist, and the Apocalyptic Seals, much to the same general effect: Lacunza’s idea being adopted by him of the seven-sealed book being the book of Christ’s inheritance; a book now at length opened, and about to have fulfillment. - To a thoughtful reader of Lacunza and Lambert on the one hand, and of Maitland and Burgh on the other, the contrast of the views expressed about Popery must have appeared very strange: - the two Protestant writers excusing the Papacy from any concern with the predicted antichristian Apostasy, or Beast of Daniel and the Apocalypse; the two Romanist writers, alike the Dominican Father and the Jesuit, deeming its resemblance to that Apostasy and Antichristian Beast, for many centuries previous, to have been so marked, that (although some yet further development might be expected of its evil) yet it was manifestly to Papal Rome, as it long had been, and Papal Rome even as it would be to last, that the application of the prophecies was due. [82] - One strong point with the new English futurist school was the great discrepancy (already noted of many chief Protestant expositors of the historical school on sundry points of Apocalyptic interpretation; e.g. on the Seals, the two Witnesses’ death and resurrection, &c; [83] and manifest unsatisfactoriness of the explanation on some of those points, as given alike by one and all. Here Mr. Maitland dashed in, it has been said, like a falcon into dovecote, that is, a small peaceful pigeon, and made havoc of them. Another influential argument for a while in its favor was the asserted utter novelty of the year-day principle, as if never dreamt of before Wicliff in reference to the prophetic periods; and additionally the asserted utterly anti-patristic character of the views held by the Protestants respecting Antichrist. - The progress of pre-millennarian opinions, and great change of view operated in many minds upon that great prophetic point, predisposed them doubtless to change in others; and made not a few more ready to abandon the Protestant theory on the year-day question also, and that of Antichrist. - Another and quite different occurrence operated soon after, and with very great power, to spread and give fresh weight to these anti-Protestant opinions. In 1833 began the publication of the Oxford Tracts. One chief object of the chief writers, soon developed, was to unprotestantize the Church of England. [84] How then could they overlook, or help availing themselves of, the assistance of these laborers in the futurist school: whose views set aside all application to the Roman Papacy of the fearful prophecies respecting Antichrist; and left Protestantism consequently all open to the charge of unjustifiable schism; and the Papacy all open to the Catholic desires, and aspirations, of the Tractators [85]

So as regards the new English futurist school, and its gradual but rapid advance in England in the period spoken of. Nor must I omit to add that in the course of the same 18 or 20 years the gradual influx of German literature into England, including its theology among other branches, began to familiarize the English mind more and more with the most popular German views of Scripture prophecy: i.e. as Eichhorn’s scheme in its main points still had sway, [86] with that Præterist Apocalyptic Scheme of which a sketch was set before my readers in the preceding Section. [87] Professor Lee at Cambridge adopted a Præterist view (one somewhat like Bossuet’s though with marked peculiarities) quite independently of German theorists, if I mistake not. [88] But many more were directly influenced to the view by German theologians, alike among Germanizing English Churchmen and English Dissenters, until at length in 1845 there came forth the Anglo-American stereotype of the theory in the elaborate Apocalyptic comment of Professor Moses Stuart. [89]

It was after perusal of some of the publications of Messrs. Maitland and Burgh that the question first pressed itself on the mind of the writer of the Horæ, as one too important to be lightly passed over, whether, in very truth, the long received Protestant anti-papal solutions of Daniel and the Apocalypse were mere total error, or whether the main error lay with the assailants. And this was the result. The fitting of the prophecies of Daniel’s little horn and the Apocalyptic Beast to the Roman Papacy seemed to him (as to Lambert and Lacunza) on main points so striking, as to render it incredible that the agreement could be a mere chance agreement, or anything but what was intended by the Divine Spirit, that indited or composed the prophecies. But, if so, then he felt also persuaded that on sundry points on which the unsatisfactoriness of the Protestant solutions had been proved, (more especially on the Apocalyptic Seals, the Sealing Vision, that of the rainbow-crowned Angel of Apoc. x., and its notification about the two Witnesses’ death and resurrection, also on the Beast’s 7th head, the image of the Beast, and the Apocalyptic structure itself,) some new and better solutions, accordant with the main Protestant view of the Beast and Babylon, must be intended, and by diligent thought and research discoverable.

For it is to be understood that on these points the modern Interpreters of the Protestant Scheme had, up to the time of the publication of the Horæ, added nothing, at least nothing of importance, to the lucubrations, that is, the laborious study of their predecessors. It seems to me to have been their chief office, and no unimportant one surely, to awaken attention to the fact of the seventh Trumpet’s having sounded at the French Revolution; and to arouse and keep up an interest, often too ready to flag, in the great subject of Scripture Prophecy. So in the case of Messers. Faber, Cuninghame, and Frere. So to in that of Messrs. Bickersteth and Birks, however fanciful, in my opinion, not a little of their originally joint-propounded Scheme of Apocalyptic Interpretation. [90] More especially, as regards Mr. Birks, not only has he by his masterly work on the First Elements of Prophecy advanced the cause of truth, and shown himself its mortar and hammer, against what I must beg permission anticipatively to call the reveries of the Futurists: but moreover, by his exquisite description of the City that is to be revealed at Christ’s second advent, has done much to enlist each hallowed feeling of the heart on the side he advocates; a description such that one might almost suppose the golden reed to have been given him, with which to delineate it, by the Angel that showed to the beloved disciple the Lamb’s bride, the New Jerusalem.

So in 1844 the “HORÆ APOCALYPTICÆ” was first published; its four subsequent Editions being sent forth in 1846, 1847, 1851; its 5th now in 1862. The views and anticipations with which I began and prosecuted my researches were more particularly as follows.

1st, I was persuaded that, if the Apocalypse were indeed a Divine revelation of the things that were afterwards to come to pass, (i.e. from after the time of St. John’s seeing the vision, or close of Domitian’s reign, [91] to the consummation,) then the intervening æras and events prospectively selected for prefiguration must necessarily (just as in the case of any judicious historian’s retrospective selection) have been those of most importance in the subsequent history of Christendom; and that the prophetic picturings in each case, especially if much in detail, must have been such as to be applicable perfectly to those events and æras distinctively and alone. If applied, as I saw they had been in previous expositions, to the most different events, æras, and subjects, this must have arisen, I felt sure, from the expositors not having explored the peculiarity and force of the prophetic figurations with sufficient research, care, and particularity: whether on principle, so as in the case of some, [92] or indolence, ignorance, and want of discernment, so as in that of many others. This was a lesson to me of the necessity of noting most carefully every peculiarity of indication in each of the sacred figurations, and of sparing no pains in the investigation of whatever might elucidate it. And certainly a success beyond all that I could have anticipated seemed to myself to result from these researches. First there presented itself to me, in the more perfect elucidation of each and every point of detail in the figuration of the four first Seals, - in part from medallic, in part from other previously unnoticed sources of illustration, - an anticipative prophetic sketch, singularly exact, of the fortunes and phases of the secular Roman empire from St. John’s time to near the end of the third century: - then, by the light of similarly new and peculiar evidence, the fixing of the long previously suggested application of the 5th and 6th Trumpet symbolization to the Saracenic and Turkish invasions respectively; and fixing too, as applicable to the times of the Reformation, of the intent of the rainbow-crowned Angel’s descent and doings, and of St. John’s measuring of the Apocalyptic temple, and of Christ’s two sackcloth-robed witnesses’ death, resurrection, and ascent in Apoc. x. and xi., in the æra of the same 6th Trumpet. After which again came up before me the admirable use of medallic monuments of the times in elucidation of the prophecy. In Apoc. xii. the long before supposed application of the symbol of the seven-headed Dragon, with diadems on his heads, seeking to devour the sun-clothed Woman’s child when born, to Roman Heathendom’s last warring against the Christian Church, and Constantine the elders kingly son of the Church, at the opening of the 4th century, received confirmation from the fact of the diadem having just as that very time been adopted as the chief imperial head-badge. Besides which in this my present Edition there will be found similarly illustrated, and confirmed, the truth of the application of the ten diademed horns of the Beast from the sea in Apoc. xiii. to the ten Romano-Gothic kings of Western Europe in the 6th century: they having just then adopted the diadem as their royal head-badge, as seen in the notable Plate of their barbaric coins of about the date given in my Vol. iii. p. 145. - 2ndly, as Scripture prophecy generally, instead of separating what it might have to say on the Church (Jewish or Christian), and the world’s secular powers any way connected with it, was apt to intermingle those sayings, so it seemed to me likely that it would be in Apocalyptic prophecy; however contrary to the expository principles acted on by other prophetic expositors, such as I have lately been speaking of. [93] The fact, which I soon ascertained in my primary Apocalyptic researches, of a Temple or Tabernacle, with its triple division into Altar-Court, Holy Place, and most Holy, ever standing as the perpetual foreground before the Apostle, throughout the revelation of the prophecy, with Mount Zion and the Holy City adjacent, and all in connection with the pictured world around, this, [94] - suggesting as it did the facility of turning at any time from one to the other, strengthened my à priori expectation, and was in fact found by me afterwards to be so taken advantage of perpetually in the prophetic figurations. - 3rdly, the circumstance of the prophecy being written (as is expressly stated) on the seven-sealed scroll’s two sides, “within and without,” offered, I saw, in the most obvious and simple manner, a form of the prophetic Book in which, side by side, there might be inscribed the chronological parallelisms of parts so parallel, but separated in the prophecy from each other; and consequently that there was no need of seizing on the Little opened Book of Apoc. x., so as had been done by Mede, Faber, and many others, without any warrant in the prophecy itself, in order to supply that particular want: [95] - therewith canceling, as I have more than once observed that they did, that most true application of the inestimably important figurations in Apoc. x. and xi., made by the Protestant Reforming Fathers of the 16th century, to the re-opening of the Gospel in their own times. And indeed in the very remarkable evidence of allusive contrast, drawn by me from the history of the times of Leo X and Luther, the truth of the application of the whole prophecy of Apoc. x. to the outburst, and subsequent progress, of the great Protestant Reformation of the 16th century seemed, and still seems, to me to be made certain.

It was to be expected that an exposition in many respects so new and important would be met by adverse criticisms and objections. And accordingly, in the course of the three or four years in which the three first Editions of the Horæ were published, many adverse strictures appeared: especially those written by the late Rev. T. K. Arnold, by the Rev. W. G. Barker, and by Dr. Keith; each followed, or course, by a reply from me. It does not need here to say more of those three controversies than that, while furnishing occasion for the correction of certain smaller errors in detail, the satisfaction was left me by them of seeing, as the result, confirmation of the soundness of the main points in my exposition. In proof of which it may be mentioned that when called upon, after a few years’ continuous controversy in the pages of the British Magazine, to sum up, so as it had been given me to expect, the result of the controversy, Mr. Arnold declined to do it: [96] and that Dr. Keith, after having advertised in 1848 the speedy publication of a refutation of my very elaborate reply to him in the “Vindieiæ Horariæ,” has never published it to the present day. Besides which, I am happy to say yet further, that as, in the earlier days of the Horæ, it had to undergo the sifting of continuous criticisms, so, quite lately, it has had to meet the continuous criticisms of Dean Alford in his Commentary on the Apocalypse: criticisms more generally adverse than favorable; but given for the most part as mere dicta ex cathedrâ, without any refutation, and very often without any notice, of the proof and evidence on which my opinions were founded. This too had called forth a reply from me, [97] challenging, from him a notice and confutation of that evidence, or else a retraction of his adverse criticisms. As to the result of which challenge, it needs no very sanguine temperament on my part to assure me that the Dean will be found just as unable to justify his objections as even Dr. Keith.

Let me add, that on the great Millennary question I had the real advantage, before publishing the 4th Edition of the “Horæ,” of seeing my own views contested, and the Whitbyite hypothesis advocated, by Dr. Brown, of Glasgow. And, certainly, he seems to me to have said all that can be most effectively said against the one, and in support of the other. After most careful consideration, however, of his book, my judgment on the question has remained unchanged. For the strength of his argument consists in the exhibition of the difficulties in detail which encompass the idea of the millennium such as I suppose prophecy to foretell, under Christ’s personal reign on earth; difficulties which (as in the case of the prediction of the Noachic Flood of old), if insoluble by man now, may be left to God in his own time to answer: the strength of my own in the many more or less express declarations asserting or implying it in Holy Scripture.

As might have been expected, various Apocalyptic commentaries have issued from the press since my first publication of the Horæ: e.g., among those wholly or mainly dissentient from it, those of Desprez, W. H. Scott, and, more lately, of the Rev. Frederick Maurice, of course, as one thing of the past, the Apocalyptic millennium; [98] of which the very basis, being the baseless presumption of a Neronic date attaching to the Revelation in Patmos, would of itself be decisive against them, [99] were other grounds of refutation wanting, such as in fact abound, as we shall see in my next Chapter: - those of Dr. Wordsworth, and of Hengstenberg in Germany, on more or less of the continuous historic system, admitting the Domitianic date, but regarding the millennium as a period of the past, or past and present, not of the future; historic schemes that we may designate as millenario-præteristic: - also, on the Futurist system, not a few smaller treatises; such, more especially, as “Israel’s Future,” by the Rev. Capel Molyneux; “Plain Papers on Prophecy,” by Mr. Trotter of York; and, quite recently, the Apocalyptic Commentary by Mr. W. Kelly, of Guernsey. As I am not aware that they have any one on any point of importance added further light to apocalyptic exposition, or suggested new objections of any real weight to my own exposition, I might perhaps fairly be excused the task of dwelling here longer on any of them, and content myself by referring to my notices of several in the Appendix to my Warburton Lectures, and elsewhere. [100] In one or other, however, of the several Chapters devoted to the review, and I trust refutation, of the chief Apocalyptic counter-Schemes to my own, (viz. primarily the wholly Præteristic and the Futuristic, and further too the Millenario-Præteristic of certain of the historic school,) fitting opportunities will occur for noticing both Mr. W. Kelly’s recent Commentary, on the principle of Modified Futurism; and also Dr. Wordsworth’s, and (more at large) Hengstenberg’s millenario-præteristic system, conjunctively with the advocacy of it by the respected name of Bishop Waldegrave. [101] Finally, as Dean Alford, in the Commentary on the Apocalypse in his last Volume, has commented continuously and generally unfavorably on my exposition, I have thought it well, as already said, to publish a reply to him in a separate Pamphlet.


For, in conclusion, the readers of this Historic Sketch will see that there are but three grand Schemes of Apocalyptic interpretation that can be considered as standing up face to face against each other: with any serious pretensions to truth, or advocacy supporting them of any real literary weight. - The 1st is that of the Præterists; restricting the subject of the prophecy, except in its two or three last chapters, to the catastrophes of the Jewish nation and old Roman Empire, one or both, as accomplished in the 1st and 2nd, or 5th and 6th centuries respectively: which Scheme, originally propounded, as we saw, by the Jesuit Aleasar, and then adopted by Grotius, has been under one modification, and on the hypothesis of a Neronic date of the Apocalypse, urged till quite of late alike by most of the more eminent of the later German prophetic expositors, by Professor Moses Stuart in the United States of America, and by the disciples of the German School in England; also, under another modification, and on the hypothesis of a Domitianic date, by Bossuet. - The 2nd is the Futurists’ Scheme; making the whole of the Apocalyptic Prophecy, (excepting perhaps the primary Vision and Letters to the Seven Churches,) [102] to relate to things even now future, viz. the things concerning Christ’s second Advent: a Scheme this first set forth, we saw, by the Jesuit Ribera, at the end of the 16 century; and which in its main principle has been urged alike by Dr. S. R. Maitland, Mr. Burgh, the Oxford Tractator on Antichrist, and others, in our own times and æra, not without considerable success: also other expositors of late, but with certain considerable modifications, which too ought not to be past over without notice. - The 3rd is what we may call emphatically the Protestant continuous Historic Scheme of Interpretation; that which regards the Apocalypse as a prefiguration in detail of the chief events affecting the Church and Christendom, whether secular or ecclesiastical, from St. John’s time to the consummation: - a Scheme this which, in regard of its particular application of the symbols of Babylon and the Beast to Papal Rome and the Popedom, was early embraced, as we saw, by the Waldenses, Wickliffites, and Hussities; then adopted with fuller light by the chief reformers, German, Swiss, French, and English, of the 16th century; and thence transmitted downwards uninterruptedly, even to the present time.

It is this last which I embrace for my own part with a full and ever strengthening conviction of its truth. Of each of the other two counter-Schemes, in each of their two forms, the original unmodified and the modified, there will follow a critical review, and I hope decisive refutation, in my next Part.

[1] See p. 249 suprà.

[2] In Vol. i. p. 115 Lambert speaks of the passage there having been written “dans les dernieres années du 18me siecle.”

[3] Ib. p. 56, Lambert says, “J’éeris ecci en 1804.”

[4] On this point I have already cited Lambert’s language, as singularly illustrative of the symbol of the 1st Vial, in my Vol. iii. p. 373, Note 1. Besides the direct infidelity and “practical atheism” of many, (avowed atheism had just then rather gone out of fashion,) he notices other principles of evil manifest in professing Christendom: the rationalistic Christianity of some, the adoption of it by others as a mere political engine of state, and the pharisaism and “fausse justice” of the more devout i. 39 - 43. In the expression practical atheism, as applicable to their times, Lambert and Wilberforce agreed. See my Vol. iii. 447, Note 2.

[5] Vol. i. Pref. ii. pp. 146, 219, 220, 242, &c. Lambert strongly expresses his view of the promises of indefectibility and triumph being made to the visible earthly Church, i. 20, 140. “En fuyant eete eglise visible ils fuyent Jesus Christ lui mème.” In this indiscriminating and exaggerated view of the Church visible we see a weak point in Lambert.

[6] P. 255, &.

[7] See generally his Ch. xiv. on the Millennium; Vol. iii. p. 89, &c.

[8] “Et que eette grande revolution, si long temps attendue, . . ne seroit qu’ un eclair pour ainsi dire:” “un eclair qui brille un instant, et qui disparoit aussitot.” i. 233, 223. Also i. 245.

[9] ii. 67, 80, 139.

[10] Out of its 20 Chapters it occupies from Ch. v. to Ch. xvi. inclusive.

[11] The objections of Lambert I find to be some of those which I have myself made in my criticism on Bossuet, as published in my 2nd and 3rd Editions, before I was acquainted with this Dominican, Father. In the criticism, as now republished in the 2nd part of this Appendix, I may note where Lambert had preceded me in the critical objections to Bossuet’s theory.

[12] I am not sure whether Lambert mentions Bellarmine anywhere specifically.

[13] “Le mystere d’iniquité, dout parle St. Paul, est comme un abeés qui commeneoit des son tempa à se former dans le corps de l’Eglise, mais d’une maniere peu sensible, qui devoit ensuite recevoir divers accroissemens de siecle en siecle; parvenair enfin à as consommation, eclater alors. . . d’une maniere effroyable, et couvrir et infecter de son mortel venin toute la Gentilité Chretienne.” “Par papostasie on doit entendre la multitude des mechans qui abandonneront Jesus Christ et sa religion, qui se moqueront de ses mysteres, faouleront aux pieds son evangile et ses lois, ou aux sentiments d’une pieté humble et reconnoissante substitueront la presomption et l’ingratitude de la fausse justice.” “L’apostasie precedera l’Antichrist: et, quand elle sera montée à son comble, l’Homme de péché, on l’Antichrist, sera manifesté.” ii. 318, 271.

[14] ii. 278.

[15] Mark how Lambert makes the Antichristian apostasy to have been already developed in the middle age: and compare my historic comment on (Apoc. ix. 20, 21, “And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk: 21: Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their sorceries, nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts”), at the beginning of Vol. ii.; referring at p. 24 to the same St. Bernard, in illustration of the subject.

[16] ii. 295, 311. - At p. 270 Lambert says that the statements as to their end, the one destroyed by Christ’s coming, the other cast alive into the lake of fire, are not contradictory; analwsei meaning only detruire. He might have referred to the case of Korah in Illustration. Was not Korah killed? - “And the sons of Eliab; Nemuel, and Dathan, and Abiram.  This is that Dathan and Abiram, which were famous in the congregation, who strove against Moses and against Aaron in the company of Korah, when they strove against the LORD: 10: And the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up together with Korah, when that company died, what time the fire devoured two hundred and fifty men: and they became a sign.” (Num. xxvi. 9, 10.)

[17] See pp. 153, 154 suprà.

[18] Ch. xviii. See especially p. 334.

[19] Ib. 284-297.

[20] On the sign before Mahomet, and which caused Antichrist to be expected in Phocas’ time, see Malv. i. 117.

[21] i. 62-65, 71, 72.

[22] i. 171. On Elias Lambert broaches the curious idea that he is going through a perpetual martyrdom of feeling for his apostate countrymen, indeed a kind of propitiatory holocaust. i. 159, 163.

[23] i. 40, 175, ii. 338. On the “crucifying Christ” Lambert says again, (i. 212,) “nos irreverences, profanations, sacrileges, qui ont tant de fois crucifié notre Sauveur.”

[24] So 2 Pet. iii. 10. - How there could be a preservation of any of the living from such a conflagration as Peter foretells God alone knew. i. 100, 101.

[25] So Lambert’s last Chapter.

[26] i. 108, 117.

[27] i. 109.

[28] Apoc. x. 4, “And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not.”

[29] i. 5, 72: “Le signe etonnant dont ils’agit est comme le dernier coup de trompette qui appelle le saint prophete (Elic).”

[30] i. 13, 14.

[31] Vol. iii. p. 373, Note 1.

[32] See my Vol. iii. 339, 340; and ib. 464 -475.

[33] This, says Lambert (i. 84), was the mystery meant by St. Paul in (Rom. xi. 25, “For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.”); not the recovery of the Jews, but the utter destruction of the Gentile Christendom.

[34] ii. 313-318.

[35] I should add that Lambert presses strongly on all the duty of reading and studying the Holy Scriptures.

The Chanoine of the French Church, mentioned by me Vol. iii. pp. 347, 373, expresses a similar judgment to his contemporary Lambert’s in reference to the nearness of Christ’s second coming: - a judgment founded not merely on the then signs of the times, as specified in my notices of him Vol. iii., but on other prophetic considerations also; especially that of Mahommedanism having the duration of 1260 years, attached to it in Dan. vii. and Apoc. xiii., where, says he, it is figured under the symbol of the Little Horn, and of the Beast from the Sea; (he is here somewhat fanciful;) and that those 1260 years, reckoned from the Saracens taking Jerusalem, A.D. 637, if counted as solar years, would expire in 1807; if as lunar years, in 1800. “Then is to come the last judgment; and the kingdom in which Christ is to reign with his saints for ever.

[36] From Pref. p. xxiii., xxiv.

[37] Ib. xix. In his prayer of dedication to the Messiah Jesus Christ, Vol. i. p. 10, Lacunza says, “my own brethren the Jews.” So too p. 29.

[38] Vol i. p. 3. Where it was written does not appear; whether in South America, Spain, or Italy. Mr. Irving, at p. xvii., says, “under the walls of the Vatican:” but I know not on what authority. - The reader will remember the comparative freedom of mind among Roman Catholics in the countries open to French influence from 1790 to 1813.

[39] Ib. 11.

[40] “I did not venture to expose this Treatise to the criticism of every sort of readers without making trial of it, &c.” Ibid.

[41] Tournaehon Moulin, the Cadix publisher I presume in 1812, on printing Fra Publo’s criticism, dated Dec. 1812, as a kind of Prefix or Appendix to Lacunza’s book, (Vol. i. p. 1,) says that Lacunza’s work “was first published in this city (Cadiz) in the Spanish tongue.” At p. xxiv. a Spanish officer’s notice to Mr. Irving is given, stating that “an abridgment was published in the Isle of Leon in two small octavo volumes.” I suppose this was subsequent to the complete Edition of 1812.

[42] Ib. pp. xvi., xxiv.

[43] Ib. xv. Compare my brief notices of Spain, Vol. iii. pp. 414, 415, 421.

[44] So Mr. Irving’s friend, the Spanish refugee officer. “When the inquiring mind of the Spanish youth was hindered from the food which it desired, and had been entertained with during the Cortez, they formed secret Societies, of which the object was to procure and read those books expressly which were prohibited by the Inquisition. In the number of which, finding the work of Ben Ezra, the Society to which he belonged obtained it, and read it with delight.” Ibid.

[45] See above Note 2145 supra.

[46] Ibid. xvi. “Among certain of whom (the members of the Gallican Church) I am informed,” says Mr. Irving, “it is a common thing under the term of the apostate Gentility to express the first of the three positions I have laid down.” This phrase is the very one so common and prominent in Lambert; and suggests the question, Had Lambert seen, and been led to his prophetic views by, an early MS. copy of Ben Ezra?

[47] While Mr. Irving was prosecuting his English translation, another Edition in Spanish was being printed in London. Ib. xxi. Hence we may infer the large demand for it, and large circulation of it, among those who spoke the Spanish language.

[48] Not a second intermediate advent, before the third and last to final judgment, so as Lambert: but, as Mede, Christ’s one second advent; continued to the final judgment.

[49] i. 7. In the Section beginning at p. 83 Lacunza anatomizes, and exposes the absurdity of, the received idea of Satan having been bound every since Christ’s ascension. What, bound when Peter says that he goes about as a roaring lion; and moreover when the Church had to exercise its exorcising power “ad fugandos dæmones!” Surely the modern followers of this Augustinian solution of the millennial prophecy have not sufficiently weighted these obvious considerations.

[50] i. 20-32.

[51] i. 141. - This prophecy is called by Lacunza the 1st Phænomenon, i.e. vision.

[52] i. 197. - Mr. C. Maitland, p. 392, makes Lacunza, like himself, expect an infidel, Antichrist. This, as his readers must understand him, is a misrepresentation of Lacunza’s views. Lacunza’s Antichrist is not a mere individual, nor professedly infidel, but Papal, (like Michelet’s Romish “prètre athée,”) nor wholly future. Mr. C. M. would have done well to read and study this Chapter in Lacunza.

[53] Compare Lambert’s very similar views p. 254 suprà. Only Lambert more correctly makes the Antichrist the suite, or series, of individual Pontiffs, that had successively headed the every-growing apostasy.

[54] “Seeming to see,” says he, “in the Beast’s two horns as of a lamb a proper symbol of the mitre [or miter].” i. 218, 224. The question is thus suggested, What was the origin of the particular form of the episcopal mitre, with its two apices or horns? and when first introduced? See my Vol. iii. 209.

[55] “Yes, my friend, it is our priesthood, and nothing else, which is here signified, and announced for the last times, under the metaphor of a beast with two horns like a lamb’s.” i. 220. He strengthens his position by reference to the Jewish priesthood; who, though professing God’s true religion, and with the Old Testament Scriptures in their hands, did yet reject and crucify Christ: also by reference to the actual corruption of the professedly Christian priesthood, but in earlier times, (as that of the Arians,) and more especially in Lacunza’s own time. ib. 221.

[56] Ib. 232.

[57] 248-253.

[58] I presume Mr. Burgh borrowed the view from Ben Ezra.

[59] ii. 90. Compare Mr. Biley’s explanation, noticed by me Vol. iii. pp. 23-26, but with reference to the Christian Church of the 4th Century, as the Church and time intended.

[60] See p. 258 just preceding.

[61] Michael’s standing up in Dan. xii. is subsequent to Antichrist’s rise; in Apoc. xii prior to it.

[62] See p. 258 suprà

[63] ii. 117. So Lacunza of the two Witnesses. And so he seems to identify them with the faithful remnant of the Woman’s seed: for they “can only mean the remains of true Christianity among the Gentiles.” ib. 131. - But how could these faithful Gentiles be a remnant of the Jewish woman’s children? Moreover, it is only on her being in the wilderness that the Lord fully accomplishes her conversion, according to Lacunza; “speaking comfortably to her in the wilderness.” And yet she will some time before not only have believed, according to him, but made public confession for Christ.

[64] Ib. 118.

[65] In Germany, throughout the whole of the 25 or 30 years of which I am speaking in this Section, Eichhorn’s Præterist system continued to reign supreme. So M. Stuart, i. 472.

[66] Bichenl’s first publication was in 1793, before Galloway. But, as he continued to write and publish after Galloway till 1808, I have noticed Galloway first. Mr. Bicheno was thus a connecting link between the earlier Apocalyptic students of the Revolutionary æra and the later, such as Faber, Cuninghame, &c.

[67] See my Vol. i, 385.

[68] Compare my sketch of the rise of Evangelic Missions. Vol. iii. p. 483.

[69] What follows, though within inverted commas, is of course only my abstract of Mr. F.’s opinions, as expressed in his Calendar of Prophecy. And the same of what I say of Mr. Cuninghame and Mr. Frere.

It should be observed that I give Mr. F.’s prophetic views, not as expressed in his earliest Dissertation, but as expressed, after more mature reflection, in his Sacred Calendar of Prophecy. The former was published as early as 1806; the latter written, as he tells us in the Preface, in 1818, 1819, 1820, though not published till 1827. This he wished to be read as the substitute (a substitution which included many very material alterations of interpretation) for his original Dissertation on the Prophecies.

[70] Indeed, as Mr. F. puts it, five, including what is said Apoc. xiv. of the 144,000 contemporarily with the Lamb on Mount Zion. Vol. i. p. 272, 273.

[71] Ib. pp. 271-273.

Compare what is said of Mede, the first suggester of the view on this subject. See ‘Period 6. End of Century 1610 To the French Revolution.’ p. 3 suprà. Mr. F.’s proof of he 1260 years beginning with the 5th or first Woe Trumpet is anything but satisfactory. How awkwardly, on this view of the Little Book, come the last verses of Apoc. xi. in it, which tell of the 2nd Woe having past, and then, after a while, of the 3rd Woe’s announcement by the sounding of the 7th Trumpet! Ought not the Little Book to have ended with the ending of the 2nd Woe Trumpet?

[72] So too Mr. Frere. On the origination of this view see Mr. Faber writes; “The two Witnesses are the Waldensis and the Albigenses; and their death and resurrection accomplished in their banishment from the Piedmontese valleys in 1686, and glorious return 3 1/2 years after.”

[73] So altogether missing the reference of the vision to the Reformation!

[74] See Cuninghame, pp. 89, 90, (4th Edition). To show how all the supposed contents of the Little Book might be arranged, and its chronological parallelisms exhibited in one and the same seven-sealed Book, Mr. C. prefixed a diagram of the seven-sealed Book to his Dissertation, arranged according to this his view. But certainly it is a Book of such a form, with its cycles and epicycles, &c., as never Book was formed in, either in ancient or modern times.

[75] Cuninghame, p. 149. (4th Ed.)

[76] Who was the first originator of this view I know not. Mr. Cuninghame, in the 1st Edition of his Dissertation on the Seals and Trumpets, which was published in 1813, after the great Russian campaign, but before the battle of Waterloo, went so far as to express his opinion that the Beast’s 7th head was “the French Imperial Government of Napoleon Bonaparte, the 8th being still future.” Ib. 148. Which opinion, as before said, he withdrew in his subsequent Editions as “manifestly erroneous.” He had been partially preceded, it has been seen, by Mr. Galloway; who made the Beast of the Abyss, the slayer of Christ’s two Witnesses, to be the French infidel democratic power. Mr. Frere’s view was first published, I believe, in 1815; but with subsequent modifications.

[77] Said Mr. Faber, the two Witnesses are the Waldenses and the Albigenses; and their death and resurrection accomplished in their banishment from the Piedmontese valleys in 1686, and glorious return 3 1/2 years after.

Said Mr. Cuninghame, they are the protestors generally against Papal superstitution; and their death and resurrection accomplished in the defeat of the Protestants by Charles V., A.D. 1547, in battle of Muhlburg, and the subsequent success of Prince Maurice, which led to the Peace of Passau.

Said Mr. Frere, (following in the wake of Galloway,) they are the two Testaments; and their death and resurrection fulfilled in the French renunciation of Christianity, 1793, and Toleration Edict, 1797.

The comparatively narrow range of original research and learning in the English prophetic writings of this period, - comparatively I mean with reference either to the times previous or time following, - must, to a modern reader, competent to judge on such a subject, appear very striking. Always excepting Davison’s noble Work on Prophecy, being the substance of his Warburton Lectures, first published soon after 1820; and in which the old Protestant view of the great predicted Apostasy and Antichristian Beast of Daniel and St. John were strongly upheld. The Apocalyptic part however of his Book (Disc. 10.) was but very brief and partial..

[78] See the end of my Chapter on the Evangelic Missions, Vol. iii. p. 490.

[79] See Irving’s Pref. pp. i-xix.

[80] It was founded originally in 1809; but on principles of mixt agency of Churchmen and Dissenters, that rendered it so far little effective.

[81] See p. 123 suprà.

[82] See pp. 254 - 256, and 257, 258 in my previous Section.

[83] Some bringing the 7th Seal only down to the Constantinian revolution, and viewing the seven Trumpets as the 7th Seal’s evolution; others making the Seals, Trumpets, and Vials parallel in chronology, and the 7th of each to reach to the end, &c. See, besides what was said in my last Section, Vol. iii. p. 287.

[84] See Part v. Ch. ix. in my 3rd Volume.

[85] On some of these points the reader may remember my notice in the Chapter on the Year-day, beginning Vol. iii. p. 260. Others will be noticed in my review of the futurist theory in the 2nd and next Part of this Appendix.

[86] Ewald, Heinrichs, and others, had meanwhile written in the same view.

[87] See pp. 251-253 suprà..

[88] See my notice of Lee in the next Chapter of this Appendix.

[89] I should add that in Germany a very peculiar futurist view of the Apocalypse has been advocated by Dr. Züllig But, after toiling through half a volume of his crabbed German, I must beg to say that, what with its strange conceits, inconclusive conclusions, and neological absurdities, it seems scarce worth the while to present any abstract of it to my readers. And indeed I have not the book, or my notes on it, now by me.

[90] Mr. Birks, as I have had occasion elsewhere to state, has since then abandoned the peculiarities of that scheme, (see my Vol. i. p. 519, and Vol. iii. p. 192,) and united himself very much with myself in the general view of Apocalyptic interpretation.

[91] That this was the date of the Apocalypse I had already well assured myself.

[92] So e.g. by Cuninghame, Preface to 1st Edition, p. vi. “I do not attempt to explain every minute part of a symbol, but content myself with endeavoring to seize its great outlines. I consider the symbol of the Apocalypse in the light of prophetical parables.” And so too Mr. Frere, and others.

[93] E.g. Faber’s declaration about the Seals as symbols of the Roman Empire generally, Frere of the Western secular Empire, Cuninghame of the Church. Please see pp 261-267 suprà.

[94] This is enlarged on in my Preliminary Chapter, Vol. i. pp. 98-104.

[95] See my notice of the point, as first suggested by Mede, pp. 234, 235 suprà.

[96] See British Magazine for 1847.

[97] The “Apocalypsis Alfordiana.”

[98] The fact of the millennium having long past involves naturally with it that of the saints’ promised premillennary resurrection being a thing of the past also. So accordingly Mr. D. boldly states his view. “Why,” argues he, with reference to Christ’s personal second coming, and the saints’ resurrection and ascension spoken of by St. Paul in 1 Cor. xv., “might it not have taken place at that time when Josephus tells us that heavenly apparitions of chariots and soldiers in armor were seen in the clouds, shortly before the destruction of Jerusalem?” Yet St. John left behind!!

[99] “If the Neronic date be not the true one,” says Mr. Desprez, “the edifice (i.e. of his Exposition) erected at so much cost and care will fall headlong to the ground.” Does Mr. D. then attempt to support the Neronic, and gainsay the Domitianic, with any effect better than his predecessors in the same theory? By no means. In fact he seems unaware of the strength of the argument against him, alike from internal and external evidence.

[100] See especially my review Desprez in the Appendix to my Warburton Lectures; and that of the late Mr. Beale’s Apocalyptic Commentary called Armageddon, in the January No. of the “Christian Observer,” 1860.

[101] The bearing of Professor Fairbairn’s able Book on Prophecy, not long since published, on the point in question will also come under review.

[102] Dr. S. R. Maitland, as before observed, and also the Rev. James Kelly and others, would have even the first Chapter refer to the distant and closing future. Others however begin the future only with Ch. iv.