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interest in favour of the book. But let it not be thought, that the insertion of it in this place is to gratify literary vanity. Had the Bishop ascribed to the author the praise of that talent and ingenuity with which he has so eloquently adorned the memory of Joseph Mede, I might be thought liable to this imputation: but he confines his commendation to the simple course pursued by the writer in searching the Holy Scriptures for an explanation of the symbols, and in applying them in a spiritual sense: and this is all the commendation I desire.1
I proceed to state the rules, or canons, which in the former work were proposed by me, as the chart and compass to direct my course, in the untried sea upon which I was about to embark. It is necessary to repeat them, as they form the basis of interpretation adopted in the present work.
In entering upon this most important considera
1 Introduction to the Study of the Prophecies, &c. at the Warburtonian Lecture; by R. HURD, D.D. &c.: consult Sermon X. in which it appears, that the Bishop had at that time a strong predilection for Mede's system of interpretation. And it may be thought extraordinary, that in his latter years he should speak so favourablyof another book, the tendency of which is, in many parts, to show the invalidity of Mede's deductions. But the learning and genius of this distinguished prelate, were not superior to his candour and rectitude of mind. At one time, he admires the genius of a writer who seems to force his way over all impediments in pursuit of truth: at a later day, he acquiesces in the better fortune of another, who pursues an humbler and more sure course for the attainment of his object.
tion, the question which first commanded my attention was," From what source can we reasonably expect to derive the safest and surest means of understanding the figurative prophetical language of the Apocalypse?" The proper answer appeared obvious, and attended with little or no difficulty: for, if the Apocalypse be of divine revelation, an uniformity must be expected to subsist between this and other portions of sacred Scripture. If the same divine Spirit which dictated the preceding prophecies, were also the Inspirer of the apocalytic visions, a mutual relation must subsist between them; and the light derived from the one must contribute most beneficially to the elucidation of the other.
This then was the first principle, upon which I resolved to ground my method of investigation;-— to compare the language, the symbols, the predictions of the Apocalypse, with those of former revelations; and to admit only such interpretation, as should appear to have the sanction of this divine authority.
A second controlling principle seemed necessary. For, as the language, symbols, and predictions thus interpreted by the assistance of Scripture, were to be applied afterwards to historical facts, a preliminary question seemed to occur;-to what kind of history are they to be applied? To profane history, or sacred? to the extensive and boundless mass of the gentile history, or, exclusively, to that of God's chosen people? To assist me in answering this question, I had recourse to the preceding prophecies of the Old and New Testament. How have we been authorized to explain these? In what kind of his
Contains, in seven Sections-The opening of the seventh Seal, the six first Trumpets, and the prophetic commission given to St. John.
SECT. I. CHAP. viii. 1-5.—The opening of the seventh Seal, and the commission to the angels with the seven Trumpets
SECT. II and III. CHAP. viii. 6-13.-The four first trum-
SECT. VII. CHAP. xi. 1-14.-The measuring of the temple, and the witnesses
Contains, in four Sections-The sounding of the seventh
SECT. I. CHAP. xi. 15-19.—The sounding of the seventh
SECT. II. CHAP. xii. 1—17.—The Woman and the Dragon.
SECT. IV. CHAP. xiii. 11-18.-The Beast from the earth or land, styled the false Prophet.
Contains, in six Sections-The Lamb on Mount Sion, and the
Proclamations or Warnings.
SECT. I. CHAP. xiv. 1—5.—The Lamb on mount Sion
SECT. VI. CHAP. xiv. 14-20.-The vision of the Harvest, and of the Vintage
Contains, in five Sections-The Seven Vials; and the Harlot of Babylon, and her fall.
SECT. I. CHAP. xv.; and CHAP. xvi. 1.-The Vision preparatory to the seven Vials
SECT. II. CHAP. xvi. 2-21.-The seven Vials
SECT. III. CHAP. xvii.-The Great Harlot, or Babylon SECT. IV. CHAP. Xviii.-The judgment of the great Harlot. 370 SECT. V. CHAP. xix. 1-10.-Exultation in heaven upon the fall of Babylon, and the approach of the new Jerusalem
Contains, in seven Sections-The grand conflict and victory over the Beast and false Prophet; the Dragon taken and confined; the Millennium; the Dragon loosed, and deceiving the Nations, is cast into the burning Lake; the general Judgment; and the new Creation.
SECT. I, CHAP. xix. 11-18.-The Lord descends to battle
SECT. II. CHAP. xix. 19-21.-The conflict, and the victory over the wild Beast, and false Prophet
SECT. V. CHAP. XX. 7-10.-Satan loosed, deceiveth the
SECT. III. CHAP. XX. 1-3.—The Dragon taken and con
SECT. IV. CHAP. XX. 4-6.-The Millennium
nations, and is cast into the burning Lake
SECT. VI. CHAP. XX. 11-15.-The general Judgment
Contains, in two Sections-the description of the Bride, or new Jerusalem; and the Conclusion.
SECT. I. CHAP. xxi. 9, to the end; CHAP. xxii. 1-5. The
Bride, or New Jerusalem
SECT. II. CHAP. Xxii. 6, to the end.-The Conclusion
IN TWO PARTS.
PART I. Comparison of the Prophecies in the Apocalypse, chapters xiii. and xix. with those of the Prophet Daniel in chapter vii.; and of St. Paul in 2 Thessalonians, chapter ii.
PART II.-Comparison of Popery with Mahometism, as fulfilling the symbols of the two Horns, of the second wild Beast, or false Prophet