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the New Testament is more widely diffused, and its changes are on a larger scale : its temptations and adversaries are more various. The direct presence of inspired teachers has been entirely withdrawn. The miraculous tokens of God's own presence have been equally withheld. The dispensation is, in its very nature, one of higher privilege and more full access to the divine counsels. The name which the Saviour bears under it is, the great Prophet which should come into the world. Every circumstance of distinction, instead of diminishing, increases the force of the analogy, and raises it to the strength of a moral demonstration.

5. There seem only two replies which can be made to this argument, and both are insufficient. First, it has been asserted that the Church never has derived such light from the Apocalypse ; and hence, that the analogy, however specious in theory, fails to apply. But the assertion is untrue. However partial and defective the light which the Church gained from this book in the first thousand years, it was fully as much, in proportion to the events, as the light of the Jews from the Old Testament prophets. The early triumphs of the Gospel, the downfal of Rome, the troubles and temptations which would intervene to the Church, and the final triumph of Christ's kingdom, were seen in it from the earliest ages; and as time advanced, the expectations drawn from it became increasingly clear and perspicuous. Instances might be given in later times of interpretations which approach to the precision and truth of real and direct prophecies.

6. Again, it has been urged that the Church, under the New Testament, was to be in constant expectation of the second advent. The whole period was a parenthesis, and therefore no detailed prophecy of its

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course and duration could have been given. This argument is sometimes put so strongly as to seem like a denial of the perfect foreknowledge of God, and the eternity of His counsels.

The following passage in Dr. Todd's Lectures has certainly a very heterodox appearance:

For, if we suppose the apostle to have believed that the apostasy was to afflict the Church for many centuries, the revelation, that such an event was first to come, would have been equivalent to an express revelation that many centuries were to elapse between the apostolic age and the day of Christ; and although the result has shown that many centuries have, in fact, intervened, yet we have no reason to believe that this formed any part of the counsel of God. Our Lord's coming may have been delayed by the continued unbelief of the Jewish nation, by the existence of that which still, perhaps, withholdeth the revelation of Antichrist, or by other causes beyond the ken of man. But to suppose it revealed to the Church, as part of the immutable counsel of the Most High, that so long a time was necessarily to elapse before the day of Christ could come, is manifestly irreconcilable with the numerous passages in which we are exhorted to watch and pray, because we know not when the time is” (L. Ant. p. 260).

The words here put in italics contain a doctrine so evidently unscriptural and false, that it is needless to enter on their refutation. But the objection itself, when cleared of the errors with which it has been joined, and placed in the strongest light, is entirely deceptive. It is plain, from reason and Scripture alike, that "known unto God are all His works from the beginning." It was clearly in His power, had He pleased, to reveal beforehand both the events and the times of the Christian dispensation. The sole impediment lay in the warnings founded on the ignorance of the Church, and the lesson

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which they imply that such knowledge as would interfere with hope and weaken expectation would be purposely withheld. The real question is has the Apocalypse, on any hypothesis as to its true meaning, actually produced such effects ? Plainly it has not. The very charge which is brought against the existing interpretations is a proof. Their authors are condemned for repeated anticipations of the time of the advent. Now this is a proof that the Apocalypse, even on the wider view of its meaning, has not defeated the purpose of those general warnings. To say that this effect must have followed, if it had been understood from the first, is pointless and irrelevant. The objection, to be valid, must be drawn from the actual results of the interpretation, and not from those which might have occurred had the revelation been less obscure.

It may be freely granted, then, that the times of the Gospel are, in one sense, a divine parenthesis, in their relation to the Jewish promises. But it must also be allowed that this parenthesis was known and defined in the counsels of God from the beginning ; that its defective cause, the unbelief of the Jews, was foreknown; and that its direct and true cause, the sovereign grace of God towards the Gentiles, had its times decreed and fore-appointed. It must be granted, further, that the events of this period were a main part of the counsel of redemption, superior in dignity to those of all former ages before the coming of Messiah. It was, therefore, even more natural and fitting that they should be revealed to Christians, than those which had been an. nounced by the elder prophets, if only this might be done without a premature revelation of times and sea

Now this is exactly what the divine wisdom has effected in the Apocalypse, by the peculiar manner in which the times are revealed. The objection, therefore, on a closer scrutiny, confirms the wider and more enlarged interpretation.


7. There is one aspect only in which the present analogy seems imperfect. The prophecies of the Old Testament were given by parts, and in succession. The dates of the predictions, no less than the predicted events, range through a long interval of time. This difference, however, is in accordance with the nature of each dispensation. “The law made nothing perfect." Under that infant economy it was natural that the light of prophecy should be given in a more fragmentary and partial form. The symmetry and completeness of the Apocalypse answers to the higher nature of the Gospel, and the more advanced stage of Providence to which it refers. The same contrast may be seen in human writings. Books of elements, for children, are commonly given in successive parts, increasing in difficulty, and each of them incomplete; but in works of science designed for men we look for the completeness of a regular system. The contrast between the Apocalypse and the earlier prophecies is exactly of the same kind.

III. THE SPECIAL ANALOGY OF THE VISIONS OF DANIEL is a further argument, still more immediate and decisive. These two books of Scripture, it must be plain to every one, have the closest resemblance, and have a character which is shared by no others in the whole inspired canon. They are alike in their authorsDaniel, the man greatly beloved; and St. John, the beloved disciple. They are alike in their form ; for both of them are symbolical prophecies. Many of the symbols are the same, and appear in both writers. They resemble each other in the time when they were given. It was in each case after the fall of the temple, and a

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remarkable subversion of the Jewish state. Several other features of resemblance might be mentioned, and more than one instance of direct allusion.

Now the book of Daniel has been proved to contain a detail of events, in unbroken succession, from the time of the prophet to the first advent, and more especially through four centuries and a half which ensued from the commencement of the visions. Hence we may infer, by every law of reason, that the visions of St. John also reach from the apostolic age, without break, through the centuries which immediately follow.

This argument is strengthened by several collateral marks, which deepen and confirm the analogy. The book of Daniel, in the parts which were fulfilled before the times of the Gospel, has one main period of chronology revealed—the seventy weeks; and these form about three-fourths of the whole interval. In like manner, the Revelation exhibits one main period of revealed time before the second advent: and this, on the common hypothesis, is 1,260 years, or more than two-thirds of the interval since the prophecy was given.

The visions of Daniel, again, may be distinguished historically into two parts; those clearly fulfilled before the times of the Gospel, and those which are later. Now the book of Revelation exhibits a close resemblance to these last, and to these only. We have no date, for instance, in the book of Revelation, approaching in value to the seventy weeks; and no beasts answering to the three first of those in Daniel. But the period of a time, times, and half, re-appears, in the very same form, and becomes a cardinal feature in the new prophecy. The ten-horned beast appears also; and the horns receive the very same interpretation. The same remark applies to the casting down of the stars, and the desola

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