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like a terrible storm of hail and fire, mingled with blood, under their famous leader, Aleric. They ravaged and wasted Greece and Italy, and besieged Rome in 395; and were bought off at an exhorbitant price; but besieged it again in 410, took and plundered the city, and set fire to it in several places. Philostorgius, who lived and wrote of this time, saith that“the sword of the barbarians destroyed immense multitudes of men, and among other calamities, dry heats, with flashes of flame & whirlwinds of fire occasioned the most intolerable terrors; yea and hail, greater than could be held in a man's hand, weighing as much as eight pounds, fell in many places.”
Jerome also saith, of some of these barbarians, that they came on unexpectedly every where, and marching quicker than report, spared neither religion, nor dignities, nor age, nor crying infancy; those were compelled to die who had not yet begun to live--so truly did they destroy the trees and green grass." But this applies with more, if not equal force to the siege and destruction of Jerusalem, and the other cities of the Jews.Attila and his Huns for the space of fourteen years, Sigonius says, shook the east and west with the most cruel fear, and deformed the provinces of each empire with all kinds of plundering, slaughter and burning. They first wasted Thrace, Macedon and Greece, putting all to fire and sword: and compelled the Eastern Emperor, Theodosius II, to purchase a shameful
peace. Then Attila turned his arms against the Western Emperor, Valentinian III, entered Gaul with seven hundred thousand men, and not content with taking and spoiling, set fire to most of their towns and cities. But at length, being there vigorously opposed, he fell upon Italy, slaying the inhabitants, laying their buildings in ashes, and filling all places between the Alps and the Appenines with flight, desperation, slaughter, servitude, depopulation, burning and despair. He was preparing to march to Rome, but was prevented or diverted from his purpose by a solemn embassy from the Emperor, and the promise of an annual tribute; and so concluding a truce,
retired from Italy, and passed into his own dominions beyond the Danube."
Such an army under such a leader, might well be compared to "a great mountain burning with fire cast into the sea." He styled himself the scourge of God and the terror of men;" and boasted that he was sent into the world, by God, for this purpose: That as the executioner of his just and righteous anger, he might fill the earth with all kinds of evils: and he bounded his eruelty and passion by nothing less than extermination, blood and burning. The sounding of the third and fourth trumpets come down to the final destruction and total subversion of the Roman Empire in the world, when her sun, moon, and stars were entirely extinguished, in the year 493, by Theo. doric, king of the Ostrogoths, who founded the kingdom of the Ostrogoths in Italy; and Genseric, with his Vandals, settled in Africa and Spain. But the kingdom of the Ostrogoths, lasted but about sixty years: For Justin II, emperor of the Eastern Empire, sent Longinus, in the year 556, to govern Italy with absolute authority. He changed the whole form of government, abolished the Senate of Rome and the consuls, and all the the former magistrates; and in every city of note, constituted new governors with the title of Duke. He presided over them all; and residing at Ravenna, and not at Rome, he was called the Exarch of Ravenna, as were also his successors in office. Rome was thus degraded to the same level with other cities; and from being the Queen and Empress of the world; was reduced to a poor dukedom, and made tributary to Ravenná which she used to govern.
10. And the third angel sounded, and there fell a great star from heaven, burning as it were a lamp, and it fell upon the third part of the rivers, and fountains of waters. 11. And the name of the star is called wormwood: and the third part of the waters became wormwood: and many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter. That is, by the damnable heresies of ropery.
But in all these overturnings and dreadful commotions, when the whole earth was a battle ground, with confused noise of the warrior, and garments rolled in blood, the Pope was not idle: the mystery of iniquity was still working. He who had let or hindered was now taken out of the way, and that wicked one, the man of sin, the son of perdition, was now about to stand forth revealed in all his hellish deformity. All the barbarian nations that over-ran the Roman Empire, which was then full of Christian churches, embraced Christianity in some shape, with all the errors and absurdities brought by Simon, the sorcerer, Demas, Diotrephes &c., which had been all along acquiring mighty accessions of strength, by ambitious hypocritical priests, called bishops, and other dignitaries of the church. These inventions of men of corrupt minds and devices of the devil went on with accelerated force, from the day that Constantine established the Christian religion by law. Men who could not stand the fire of persecution, now crept into the church in abundance to make merchandize of the Christians, and brought in with them such a flood of error, that the waters of the sanctury and the fountains were made. bitter as wormwood; that many men died of the waters because they were made bitter.
But all the barbarous people, the new inhabitants of the Roman empire had been the grossest idolaters, and being the majority, therefore the Bishop of Rome, to please the multitude, introduced the very worst of idolatry. But the nominal. Christains who had embraced all the errors of the times, being very numerous also, must not be displeased; therefore the new idolatry must have the semblance of Christianity, mixed with Judaism; leaving the pious Christian, the humble, faithful follower of the meek and lowly Jesus, to mourn over the coruptions of the times, and instead of listening to their just complaints, they, cruel lordlings over God's heritage became the most unrelenting persecutors of the church and people ot God that ever the world witnessed before.
12. And the fourth angel sounded, & the third part of the sun was smitten, and the third part of the moon, and the third part of the stars, so as the third part ofthem was darkened, & the day shone not for a third part of it, and the night likewise. 13. And 1 beheld, and heard an angel flying through the midst of heaven saying with a loud voice, Woe, woe, woe, to the inhabiters ofthe earth, by reason of the other voices of the trumpet of the three angels, which are yet to sound! The prophet here more properly speaking the spirit of God by his Prophet, makes a solemn pause, and bespeaks a more than common attention, of the whole race of man, the church and the world, to what is to be revealed. And to show that the mighty events to be exibited, are beyond all human control, like all the former Trumpets; it is angels thatare to sound them also. But the people of God have been sealed, &in the Ark of safety, secure in the everlasting covenant; therefore the woes are pointedly addressed to the inhabiters of the earth; the men ofthe earth: whose names are written in the earth, in contradistinction to the saints whose names are written in heaven.
This great star wbich fell from heaven, at the sounding of the third Trumpet, is without doubt the Bishop of Rome, burning as it were a lamp, and it fell upon the third part of the rivers and upon the fountains of water; this lamp is like that of the five foolish virgins, gives a false and delusive light that will light them to hell but can never light them to heaven. If the light that is in you be darkness how great is that darkness. The church of Rome, was once a pure christian church; but it is not now a church at all; no more than the most loathsome vile prostitute is a chaste virgin, no more than the synagogue of satan is the temple of the living God! This star may well be called by the name of wormwood; and the third part of the waters became wormword; and many men died of the waters because they were made bitter.
The end of this dreadful and terrible beast was now come; for a mere boy, the son of Orestes, a Pannonian, one of the
vassals of Attila, was placed on the imperial throne. His name was Romulus Augustus, but instead of doing honor to the first foundation of the empire, out of contempt the people named him Momyllus Augustus, or little Augustus; and in the year 476, Odoacer, a bold barbarian, at the head of an army, commanded him to retire from the insulted throne. Augustus submissively obeyed. The Senate formally declared the seat of Empire, to be removed to Constantinople; and the seventh head,or form of the government that began753 years before the advent of the glorious and blessed Messiah, and which now had lasted 1229 years was no more.
But a new Power was now to arise out of the western empire, who was to sway a sceptre and sovreignty which was to throw all earthly kingdoms into the shade. The beast that had a wound by the sword of Divine justice, in the hands of the barbarians, whose deadly wound was now to be healed in its. ten horns, and the little horn that came up among them, before whom three of the former horns were plucked up by the roots, was now to appear.
The transfer of the seat of empire, to Constantinople, had greatly increased the power and influence of the Bishop of Rome. He never let an opportunity slip unimproved; his ambition increased with the means of gratifying it, venerable from his office in the ancient imperial city; he was pointed out as the natural arbiter and mediator of the barbarians & of the city,& the representative of its distant monarch. Constantinople, & Rome. The one proud of the Imperial residence, the other of the ancient sovreignty; long disputed the primacy of Christen. dom. The spirit of ambition spread widely, and after a long, fierce, factious and disgraceful struggle; the council of Chalcedon, recognised the five patriarchates of Rome: Constantino-. ple, Alexandria, Antioch, and Palestine. Leo, the Roman Bishop,protested in vain against the equality of the Bishop of Constantinople;the Emperor sided with the Council. But the Papal power was already fixed upon a foundation, not to be shaken by