« PreviousContinue »
made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, who alone is worthy to open the book &to loose the seals thereof. The whole general assembly and church of the first born, which are written in heaven, and the innumerable company of angels and spirits of just inen made perfect, a multitude which no man can number, who have been redeemed unto ,od, by the precious blood of the Lamb, out of every kindred and tongue and people and nation. They sing a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof; for thou wast slain &c. The innumerable multitude of the heavenly host join in adoration and praise and rejoice in the mediatorial government, saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing. And every creature which is in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb, forever and ever. And the four living creatures said Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped Him that liveth forever and ever.
The sixth chapter commences with the opening of the seals, in order as the mighty events occurred, and contains a history of the church, and of the world to the end of time. 1. And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were, the voice of thunder, one of the four living creatures saying, Come and see. 2. And I saw, and behold, a white horse; and he that sat on him had a bow, and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth, conquering and to conquer.
Here are the victories and triumphs of the cross of Christ, by the peaceful, mild and spiritual armour of the word of God, preached to all nations by the Apostles and primitive Christians after they were endued with power from on high by the extraordinary effusion of the Holy Spirit on the day of Penticost. were crowned with
where. But it aludes
to the Roman conquests likewise; for the history of the church and of the world are inseparably blend ed together, by all the prophets throughout the bible.
3. And when he had opened the second seal, I heard the ser cond living creature say, come and see. Observe, here it was the second living creature, the Jewish dispensation, that is exhibited in this second seal. 4. And there went out another horse that was red; and power was given to him that sat there. on, to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another:& there was given unto him a great sword. This is the destruction, the unparrelled destruction of Jerusalem and the temple and the Jewish nation, and the other wars of the world; but the church had some rest, when the cruel and bitter persecutions of the unbelieving Jews were taken away.-5. And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third Jiving creature say, come and see. And I beheld and lo, a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his band. The Roman Empire, under this third seal, and third living creature, or gospel dispensation, is weighed in the balance and found wanting; and its death is come by a fearful overthrow, of war, famine, pestilence and the beasts of the earth. The judgments of a Holy & righteous God are now to be poured out in their perfection, upon the dreadful and terrible beast, with great iron teeth and nails of brass; for its horrid cruelty in uniting with the wicked Jewish aristocracy, first in crucifying the Lord of life and glory, and murdering his saints; and secondly, their tyranny, oppression, idolatry, and trampling under foot the rights and liberties of the world of mankind.
7. 8. And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature, say, come and see. And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword and with hunger, and with death and with the beasts of the
earth. The wicked shall be turned into hell with all the pa. tions that forget God. The horrible scenes of death by war, famine and pestilence, during the destruction of the Roman Empire, have been well described by the friends and enemies of Divine revelation; and is a complete perfect and literal ful. filment of the ancient prophecies.
9. And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar, the souls of them, that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held.
10. And they cried with a loud voice, saying: How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge, our blood on them that dwell on the earth?
11. And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellow servants also, and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled. Here is an epitome of the persecutions under the Pagan Roman empire, which was just about to receive its fearful and tremendous downfall. But it is told to the souls under the altar, that they must rest yet for a little season; and it is also intimated, that though the Pagan Roman government, would meet a fearfiul doom, it was not the final vengeance, nor the final persecution. That another persecution or series of persecutions, would be continued under a new name; not only with the same fiendlike cruelty and satanic spirit as the former, under the dreadful and terrible beast, with great iron teeth and nails of brass; but much more cruel of longer duration and of much wider extent, under papal Rome, which is but a revived image of the beast that was, (Pagan Rome,) and is not, and yet is revived or reanimated under the name of popery. The beast whose deadly wound was healed, who had a wound by a sword and did live. It is well worthy of notice, at the opening of the fourth seal, or the millenium dispensation, that told the apostle to come and see, which is more than intimated, that just at the com mencement of that blessed and glorious era. The fearful von
geance, of a holy and righteous God, will fall on the oppressors and destroyers and corrupters, of the race of man, as we shall find revealed in the following part of the book, with all the minutia of perfect historical detail.
12. And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood: 13. and the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as the fig-tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind. These sublime and beautiful figures pourtray in the liveliest colors, this fearful catastrophe. The earthquake shows the horrible wars that took place; sthe sun,” the Roman government “became black as sackcloth of hair." The light of science was completely extingished by the barbarians who overran the Empire. The extent of the war is well represented by the moon becoming blood, for the whole earth became one entire field of battle. The chiefs, the princes, and potentates of the earth are here exhibited as stars falling from heaven to earth, even as fig-tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind. 14. And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together, and every mountain and island were moved out of their places. But this scroll, representing the whole existing governments of the world was only rolled together, the time was not yet come, to give it to the devouring flame. The mountains and islands were only moved out of their places. The great city Babylon was only to have a new set of masters. 15. And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich mcn, and the chief captains, and the mighty men and every bond-man, and every freeman hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains. And said to the mountains and rocks: Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him, that sitteth upon the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb. 17. For the great day of his wrath is come, and who shall be able to stand. The divine wrath of God, is clearlyset forth here against the Roman government, the manner
in which it was executed upon those wicked tyrants of the world. But it also shows forth the final downfall of that same wicked power, in new hands, at the coming of our blessed Lord at the glorious millenium. When he whose right it is to reign, shall take unto Him his great power, and subdue all things to himself and has a special allusion to the final judg. ment of the great day:
Rev. Chap. 7. But the destroying angels could not execute their dreadful comission, upon a guilty world, until his servants were in perfect security. Sodom and the cities of the plains could not be destroyed, till the angel of God first de. livered Lot, and put him in a place of safety. So here the angel is to see that the servants of God shall be sealed with the seal of the living God, before the fearful & overwhelming ruin shall be executed upon the enemies of God and man. 1. And after these things, I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind might not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree. 2. And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given, to hurt the earth and the sea, 3. Saying, hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. 4. And I heard the number of them that were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand, of all the tribes of the children of Israel.
5. Of the tribe of Judah were scaled twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Ruben were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Gad were sealed twelve thousand. 6. Of the tribe of Aser were scaled twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Nephthalim were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Manasses were sealed twelve thousand. 7. Of the tribe ofSimeon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Levi, were scaled twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Issachar were sealcd twelve thousa d. 8. Of the tribe of Zabulon, were sealed twelve thou: