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would be hereafter, when by that means Antichrift should deceive them.) And St. Luke, Chap. 11. v. 29. says, our Lord was so far from gratifying them, that he assured them no sign should be given them but the sign of Jonas the Prophet, which we know was in the Depths below. And the Holy Spirit foreseeing that this Opinion would again prevail in the World, tells us by way of Caution, that that Deceiver Antichrift should be able to bring down Fire from Heat ven; i. e. the heights above, that so when he shall shew that Sign, it may be so far from deceiving us into an Opinion of his being the Messiah, that it shall be to us a fure Token that he is the Antichrist.

$20. Now what a State must we imagine The State the World to be in, when God shall suffer of the them to be governed by such a Ruler as this, when the Powers of Darkness shall be thus let loose, and the Devil himself shall ;; reign corporally, himself ruling in chief, and sending forth on all sides innumerable nejent fins Perfons impregnated with his own Diabolical Spirit, Blasphemers of God and Haters of good Men, mighty in the Powers of 12:3; a Darkness, to be as his Deputies and Vice

iran Roys to rule and domineer in distant Provinces and Countries. I tremble to read the dismal and terrible Account that both the Holy Scriptures and Ancient Writers give of those Times; this will most certainly be that Time of Trouble, such as never was since God made Man upon Earth, nor ever shall be afterwards: For the very


World at that time.

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Foundations of the Natural, Moral, and Political World shall be destroy'd and caft down. His Conquest of the Kings and Nations of the Eastern and Western Empire we have already considered; besides which. the Prophet Daniel assures us, that be shah stretch forth his Hand upon other countries; tha: he shall have Power over the Treasures of Gas and Silver, and over all the precious Things Egypt; and the Lybians and Ethiopians shal at his steps. His horrible Contempt of G. and Prophanation of Religon we har seen, setting himself in the Temple o God, and not suffering the daily Sacrifica. nor any Christian Solemnities to be ob

served. As to the Natural World, we knov 3 that the Devil is emphatically stiled T.

Prince of the Power of the Air, Eph. 2. I. ar. as such has, no doubt, by the Permiffio: of God, a Power of raising Disorders and Commotions there ; and especially at this

, whole visible Sphere of Nature will ti abandoned and delivered over to the overflowings of the Curse. Antichrist there fore, and his Magical Attendants and Fo: lowers, shall make strange Confusions an. Alterations in external Nature; terrib: Earthquakes, Storms, Thunders, Ligh: nings, &c. and, according to their exa Knowledge of the active and passive Qu2 lities of Nature, may according to fom secret Rules of their diabolical Art, temper them, as to raise poisonous mali; hant Ferments in the Air, Earth, or 13 ter, so as to spread pestilential Influences all round, to ravage not only a ́Town, but a Country or a Kingdom. Such dark Magicians there are already fome in the way World; but (God be praised ) we are not yet abandoned to their Fury. The Measure of our Iniquities is not as yet

quite full; but that we are not very far off from that fatal Period, we have but too much Reason to fear. Whilst the Powers of Darkness are thus afiliating the Church, (i.e. those Christians who have not so far wrought out their Salvation, as to be out of the reach of the Enemy, as it is plain fome shall be ;) the Vengeance of God shall by his Instruments, the two Witnesses, vex and torment the Antichristian Company. These two Witnesses (of whom more hereafter) being endued with Power to devour their Enemies, with Fire proceeding out of their Mouths. These have also Power to fout Heaven that it rain not in the Days of their Prophecy, Rev. 11.5,6. that is, for three Years and an half: Even as it was done by Elijah in the Days of that wicked Prince Abab, which were no doubt a Type of these Times. Compare 1 Kings 17. 1. with James 5. 17. So that from hence must proceed great Famine and want of Provisions; to which the following Quotations do frequently allude. Hear the dismal Account St. Hippolytus gives of those Days. Hear, saith he, ye that

love God, what Affliction there shall be ' in those Days. That Evil One (viz. Antichrist) shall gather together Evil Spi


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rits in Human Shapes, and shall mock " and insult over the Jews who have made

him their King, and shall fet Devils to be Princes over them. And when the Famine shall be sore upon them, the Heavens being shut up, then (says he) he shall send forth his Messengers, both Men and Evil Spirits, saying, There is a great King risen upon the Earth, come ye and worThip him, and behold his Power, he shall give you Bread to eat, and Wine to drink, with

great Riches and Honours. Again, ©

Then (says he) shall he send forth Legions of Evil Spirits into the Mountains, and Dens, and Caves of the Earth, to search out them that have hid themselves froni him, and shall bring them to worship him; and those that obey him, he shall Seal with his Mark; but those that refuse, shall he punish with unheard-of Torments. Then they that have received his Mark, and cannot find either Bread or Water, shall come to him, and with a sorrowful Voice shall say, Give us Meat

and Drink, we languish for Hunger and { Thirst, command the Heavens to give us

Rain, and drive away from us the ravenous Beasts. Then shall he mock them and say, The Heavens refuse to give us Rain, the Earth will not bring forth Fruit, Whence shall I supply you? When they hear this Answer, then shall they lament and bewail their Misery, and with Sighs and Tears shall call upon that merciful God that shall deliver them out


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of his Hands, and by an invisible Power protect those that call upon him worhily. So great shall be the Trouble of hat Time, that in the Morning they hall wish for Evening ; and as soon as he Darkness of the Night shall cover hem, they shall be fo terrified with Earthquakes, Storms and Tempests, that they shall long for Morning. The whole Earth shall bewail a Life fo full of Miseries. The Sea shall mourn, the Earth shall mourn; the Sun in the Firmament of Heaven, the Beasts of the Earth, the Fowls of Heaven, the very Mountains

and Hills shall mourn for the Miseries of Mankind, because all have forsaken their God. The Churches shall mourn with great Lamentation, for there shall be neither Offering nor Holy Worship in those Days: Churches shall be as Stables; nor shall the precious Sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ be celebrated in those Days: There shall be no Prayers, no singing of Psalms, nor shall the Scriptures be read. (A little after) Without Thall be Fear, within Trembling;

both at Home and Abroad dreadful .

Scenes of Horror, Hunger and Thirst,
Lamentation and Sighing. The fine
Faces shall languish, Paleness shall co-
ver the beautiful Countenances. The

Charms of Women shall vanish. And in many other Instances does he describe the Horrors of that time. So also Lattantius*: ' Then shall the Cities be utterly * lib. 7.

ruin'd p.650.

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