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Prophecies from these latter Times, have yet been able, or
V. Because the strangest inconsistencies and absurdities pos-
. fible will follow from that Hypothefis. For if days be on
ly days of 24 hours in thefe Books, then those famous duraDan. vij. 25.
tions of the little Horns Tyranny, and of the Beasts with 10 and xij. 76
Horns Dominion, and their collateral Visions, which are deApoc. xj. 2. 3. termin'd by a Time, Timoes, and a part ; by Time, Times, and a and xij. 6. 14. half, or three years and a balf; by 42 months; and by 1260 days,
mult signify no longer an Interval than that literal sense does
and an half. Take this and fome following Arguments almost
« at 743•
“at the fame hour with the Beast. Apoc. 17. People, and
grow Rich by Trading with her. Chap. 18. These things-
VI. We appeal to the Event. If the Times of Antichrist lasted no longer than, on this Hypothesis, must be suppos'd, a bare three years and an half, thew us them in History. For
the fix first Heads of the Roman Empire, the last whereof Apoc. xvij. 10, was present in St. John's time, has been extinct above 1200
years; and the seventh which was to continue but a short Space, can make no great difference in the Computation. All seven therefore are past ncar the same space of time, and no other of the Ancient Forms of Government, but that of the 10 Contemporary Kings, which is the State of the Beast himself, has since return d into play. If therefore the Time of Antichrist be only the space of three years and an half, they are now past near 1200 years ago: and therefore may be pointed to in the Histories of the past Times. But since no body, with any colour of Truth or Probability, can shew us these three years and an half, at the time when they must have happen'd', 'tis evident they are otherwise to be understood: nay, and so to be understood, that they may not yet be intirely over, which can be no otherwise done, than by taking days in a Prophetick sense for so many years, according to the foregoing Instances to this purpose. And to conclude.
VII. Lastly, Let it be shewn through all the Prophecies of Daniel, or of St. John; or I think, I may add, of the whole Bible, that in any one instance, at least relating to the Christian Dispensation, where Times of things predicted are express’d by days, they have been answerd by the Event according to the letter; and the things have agreeably come to pass at the end of so many bare natural days. But if no single instance can be produc'd to that purpose, give us leave to follow that primary and most eminent Example of the 70 weeks Prophecy ; where, by the confession both of the Jewish and Christian Church, a day is taken for a year : or, which is the same thing, yi30 a week, which in all other places of the Bible signifies * seven days, is taken
Verùm enimvero contra plane ac Grotius pronunciavit, yav live Hebdomas abfque omni additione semper fignificat Hebdomadem dierum; nifi Achemate prophetico Dies Hebdomadis, Annos ligaificent ; quemadmodum
for seven years. And to Interpret the rest of the like Prophecies of so many years in the Event, as we find days in the Prophecies thereto relating. And since we can here positively appeal to the Event on our side, and allege the exact fulfilling of the Ancient Prophecies in this sense of days for years; as will appear in the Sequel of this Essay, there can remain no reasonable Doubt in the Case. But that in Prophetick Stile relating to the Christian Church , days everywhere denote years.
Corollary 1. Since therefore it appears that those Sacred Prophecies of the Scripture determin'd by exact Periods, which relate to the Christian Church, and the Times of the Messias, make use every where of a day for a year; and since, as Hypoth. 1. we have already observ'd, and as 'tis own'd by all, the An- prius. cient Prophecies relating to the Jewish Church, use a year still in its literal Acceptation for a single year. It will deserve to be observ'd upon any doubt concerning the Prophecies, whether they relate to the Times of the Jewish , or those of the Christian Church? which of these different Stiles are made asse of therein. For if it be evident that the years do fignify those large and vulgar Intervals, so call’d, they bave the Character of the Jewish Times. But if the words of Time be fansid that st appears a day is put for a year, a week for seven years, or the like; they have the Character of the Christian Times, and onght to be expounded accordingly.
Coroll. 2. Since therefore at the Conclusion of the Apocalypse the Duration of the happy Millennium is not determin- Apoc. xx. 2.-4. ed by days, in the Propherick Stile, but by years in the vulgar Acceptation ; that Prophecy is to be fuppos’d chiefly to concern the Jews; and to relate to the Times after their Conver
hic fit apud Danielem. Vide Gen. xxix 27. 28. Exod. xxiv. 22. Levit. xij. 5. Numb. xxviij. 26. Deut. xvj. 9. 10. 16. 2 Par.viij. 13. Jer. v. 24. Cl. Mor. Op. Theolog. p. 178.
But you will say the Etymology of the Hebrew word VZW is as applicable to Tevens of years, as sevens of days, and therefore this instance proves not. answer, The Question lies not in the Etymology, but the Use ; wherein ylw always signifies sevens of days and never levens of years. Wherefoever it is absolutly put, it means of days, is no where us’d of years. Mede p. 743.
fion to the Christian Faith: and not to belong to the Church
This Proposition is so plain at first sight, upon the bare reading of the words of the Prophecy, and comparing them with the Histories of the past Ages; especially on Supposition that the three former' Kingdoms were the Babylonian, the Medo-Persian, and the Grecian, which is own'd by all, that one can hardly think it worth the while to fet about the proof of it. And when it is withal consider'd that this has ever been the unanimous Interpretation of the Jewish as well as of the Christian Church in all Ages, if we except a very few late Authors; and that the Papists do fully join with the Proreftants herein, tho' it be highly againft their Intereft to do so it cannot but seem a little unnecessary to inlift any farther upon it. And truly, as to my own Opinion, I thould rather chuse to deny, what all are forc'd to grant, that the three first Kingdoms, denote those three beforemention'd the Babylonian, the Medo-Perhan, and the Grecian Monarchies, than, allowing those to be so, to difpute the fourth of them, and pretend it might be fome other than the Roman Empire. Yet becaufe fome few of late have ventur'd to deny it; and because it is a principal Foundation of all our Enquiries into these Matters, I shall not wholly omit it, but set down the words of the Prophet out of his double Vision bereto relating; and then point at the principal Arguments which establish the certainty of the present Proposition therefrom; and so refer the Reader to those Authors who have prov'd it more at large, and have shewn the constant Agreement of the Jewish and Chriftian Church
thereto. The words are these. Dan. ij .
Ver. 31. Thoui, o King, Sawest and behold, a great Image: That by King, this great Image whose brightness was excellent, stood before thee, in these Prophe. and the form thereof was terrible. cies, is generally meant Kingdoms ; fee fully prov'd by Mr.Garret in his Discourse concerning Antichrift. P.47.&c.