Page images

pained : all faces shall gather blackness. They shall run like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war; and they shall march every one on his ways, and they shall not break their ranks: neither shall one thrust another; they shall walk every one in his path : and when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded.* They shall run to and fro in the city; they shall run upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief. The earth shall quake before them; the heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining: and the Lord shall utter his voice before his army: for his


is very great: for He is strong that executeth his word : for the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; and who can abide it ?” (Joel ii.) “Ye multitude of terrible ones.” (Isa. xxix. 5.) the battle in array.” (Isa. xxii. 7.) the heavens. (Isa. Ixiv. 1.) Rage, ye chariots.” (Jer. xlvi. 9.) Behold the noise of the bruit is come.” (Jer. x. 22.) I go before thee in my wrath, to find out all mine enemies.” (Ps. xxi. 8.) I the Lord of hosts will visit them with thunder, and earthquake, and great noise, with storm, and tempest, and devouring flames of fire. (Isa. xxix. 6.) I will cause my glorious voice to be heard, and will show the lighting down of my arm with the indignation of my anger, flames of devouring fire, hail stones, scattering,

* Our readers will here observe that this description could alone apply unto celestial warriors.

"Set “ Rend ye

[ocr errors]

and tempest. (Isa. xxx. 30.) Ye archers, bend the bow : shoot, spare ye no arrows against those who sin against the Lord. (Jer. 1. 14.) For I will punish the host of high ones. (Isa. iv. 21.) The fire shall now devour them. (Ps. xxi. 9. Every “ battle of the warrior is with confused noise, and garments rolled in blood but this shall be with burning and fuel of fire.” (Isa. ix. 5.) My fierce anger will not return until I have done it, and until I have performed the intents of my heart. (Jer. xxx. 24.) I come upon them in sharp judgment, horribly and speedily. (Wisdom vi. 5.) Father, the hour is come: I heave down the portentous key thou laidst upon my shoulder. (Isa. xxii. 22.) I open wide the two-leaved gates. It is done: I have broke the gates of brass, and cut the iron bars in sunder. (Isa. xlv. 1, 2.)

Swift as the lightning lighteneth heaven from one end to the other, the Almighty Lord, with all his mighty angels, in flaming fire descends into his footstool heavens with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God-pouring the fury of his fierce anger as devouring fire, hailstones, fire, and brimstone! Downward as whirlwinds, his terrific armies with tremendous rush hurl the astounding thunder-bolts of heaven's heaviest calibre: “cherubim and seraphim in burning rows,” filing in all directions, running like lightning o'er the mountain-tops. (Nahum ii. 4.) Right-aiming thunder-bolts from clouds, as welldrawn bows, flying unto their mark-hailstones of wrath, cast forth from out stone bows--storm,

tempest, mighty winds loud roaring, the chariots of the Lord, myriads of high, strong angels, as flaming torches, (Nahum ii. 3,) spreading wide devastation, render bis furious anger, his rebuke with raging flames of fire. (Isa. Ixvi. 15.) By fire and by his sword He pleadeth with all flesh, burning with his anger, and the burden thereof is heavy: his lips are full of indignation, his tongue as a devouring fire : his breath as an overflowing stream, reaches the midst of the neck, to sift the nations with the sieve of vanity, (Isa. xxx. 27, 28,) threshing the mountains with a new sharp threshing instrument, having teeth ; (xli. 15;) beating them small as chaff, winds carrying them away, whirlwinds swift scattering them; sending his blazing messengers the circuit of the heavens, chasing the reeling globes, (Isa. xxiv. 20,) like unto chased roes, (Isa. xiii. 14,) before the dreadful judgment-seat. For the awful Judge now takes his seat upon his glorious throne, (Matt. xxv. 31,) encompassed by all his holy angels. The prediction is fulfilled, I make my footstool glorious.

That terrific voice that shook our earth on Sinai, as an electric shock, now vibrates from world to world: the glory of his majesty ariseth, to shake terribly all worlds, (Isa. ii. 19,) trembling and quaking because of his wrath : the foundations of the mountains are moved, (Ps. xviii. 7,) melting like wax at the presence of the Lord, (Ps. xcvii. 5,) flow down as melting fire (Isa. lxiv. 1) turned into pitch, the dust thereof to brimstone. (Isa. xxxiv. 9.) There goeth up a

smoke from his nostrils, and fire from out his mouth devoureth; coals are thereby kindled. (Ps. xviii. 8.) He has bowed his heavens and come down; God is come, and will not keep silence; it is very tempestuous round about him. (Ps. 1. 3.) He has called to the heavens from above, and to the earth, that. He may judge his people. Gather my saints together unto me; those who have made a covenant with me by sacrifice. (Ps. 1. 4, 5.) He has rode upon a cherub and has filed; yea, he has fled upon the wings of the wind; darkness was his secret place. His pavilion round about him were dark waters, and thick clouds passed, hailstones, and coals of fire: the Lord also thundereth in the heavens, and the Highest giveth forth his voice-hailstones and coals of fire; yea, He sends forth his arrows, and scattereth his enemies. He shoots out his lightnings, and discomfiteth them. Now the channels of water are seen, and the foundations of all worlds are discovered : at thy rebuke, O Lord! at the blast of the breath of thy nostrils, (Ps. xviii. 15,) all nature is convulsed; internal fires for ages raging, pent in the intestines of terraqueous bodies, with dreadful rumblings through their subterranean vaults, deep cells, and hollow caverns, force vent out huge volcanoes, issuing sulphureous smoke from every stifled crevice, every gaping chasm, form mighty columns, ascending immense heights forth from the wide-mouthed craters of the bellowing mountains, and with tremendous bursts explode-oceans of boiling matter, oceans of liquid fire, deluging the circumambient countries with

hot-erupted lavas, hurling afar red-burning rocks and stones, amongst the conflicting globes, now jostling each other with sad and violent contusions. Rolling fires, melting fast down the accumulated congelations; heaped snows of long preceding ages fall in vast cataracts, tumbling from rock to rock, plunge in tumultuous gulfs, impetuous rushing their fast-augmenting torrents into the raging ocean! The fountains of the great deeps, all broken and let loose, defy all dams and sluices; their proud disdainful waves, infuriated billows, in vain wage elemental war against the fiery deluge. Extensive torrents, majestic woods, topping the heights of lofty mountains' summits, hit by the fires shot from celestial batteries, blaze up in massive flames. Under his glory the Lord of Hosts kindles a burning fire, devours his thorns and briers, and consumes the glory of his forests. (Isa. x. 16–18.) Their blazing branches, borne by high boisterous hurricanes, on long-erected fabrics— structures, standing the test of centuries-on cities, churches, palaces, docks, involve them in one flame. Combustibles of all kinds and sorts stored in magazines, are swiftly now blown up, with loud-reiterated explosions. Explosions on explosions from mines, minerals, quarries, furnaces, and forges; destructive volleys fired by the valiant ones from out the heavenly squadrons--heavy cannonades poured in all directions from heavenly artilleryheaven above, worlds beneath, all in one universal hubbub, one horrible combustion-all nature sinking into one formless mass, to one confused wreck, one vast confused chaos !

« PreviousContinue »