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which will also be introductory to the Account we shall give of the two following Chapters.
os In the beginning of the Jewish War, says 66 our Author, in Nero's Reign the Apostles 6 Aed out of Judea with their Flocks; fome • beyond Jordan to Pella, and other places, “ some into Egypt, Syria, Mesopotamia, Asia 66 minor, and elsewhere. Peter and Jobn came " into Asia, and Peter went thence by Corintb 6c to Rome ; but John staying in Asia, was " banished by the Romans into Patmos, as the " Head of a Party of the Jews, whose Nation « was in War with the Romans. By this Dio spersion of the Christian Jews, the Christian " Religion which was already propagated 66 Westward as far as Rome, spread fast into 66 all the Roman Empire, and suffered many • Persecutions under it, till the Days of Con« ftantine the Great, and his Sons: all which is 66 thus described by Daniel; And fucb as do 66. wickedly against the Covenant, pall be, who 6 places the Abomination, cause to disemble, " and worship the Heathen Gods; but the Peoo ple among them, who do know abeir God, “ Mall be strong and act. And they that under“ stand among the People, shall instruet many; « yet they fall fall by the Sword, and by Flame,
c and by Captivity, and by Spoils many Days. 46 Now wben they ball fall, they hall be holpen .66 with a little help, viz. in the Reign of Con• ftantine the Great; and at that time, by os reason of their Prosperity, many hall come « over to them from among the Heathens, and " cleave to them with Diffimulation. But of s6 those of understanding there shall still fall to try " God's People by them, and to purge chent *** from the Diffemblers, and to make them
6 wbite, even to the time of the end: because it " is yet for a time appointed.”
“ HITHERTO the Roman Empire continued " encire, and under this Dominion the little “ Horn of the He-Goat continued mighty, " but not by his own Power. But now by the « building of Constantinople, and endowing ic 66 with a Senate and other like Privileges with .66 Rome; and by the Division of the Roman “ Empire, into the two Empires of the Greeks .“ and Latins, headed by those two. Cities, a 66 new Scene of things commerces, in which a " King, the Empire of the Greeks, dotb accord“ ing to his Will, and by setting his own Laws " above che Laws of God, exalts and magnifies 6 himself above every God, and speaks marvel6 lous things against the God of Gods, and shall 6 prosper till the Indignation be accomplished. 6 Neither shall be regard the God of bis Fathers, “ nor the lawfulDesires of Women in Matrimony, “ nor any God, but fhall magnify himself above " all, and in bis Seat be fall honour Mabuzzims, .
" that is, strong Guardians, the Souls of the .66 Dead; even with a God whom his Fathers 66 knew not, fall be honour them, in their Tem66 ples, with Gold and Silver, and with precious 66 Stones, and valuable things. All which relates “ to the overspreading of the Greek Empire « with Monks and Nups, who placed Holiness .66 in Abstinence from Marriage, and to the .6 Invocation of Saints, and Veneration of their .- Reliques, and such like Superstitions, which .66 chese Men introduced in the fourth and fifth
“ Centuries.” It appears by this Passage, · with how much Skill our Author could para
phrase the Words of the Scripture, and what a happy Genius he had to find out the hidden
Sense of the prophetic Writings. For instance; the Defire of Women, is, according to him, the lawful Defire of Women in Matrimony: from this Paraphrase, it is natural to conclude, the Propher intended to speak of the Friars and Nuns, who think Marriage is unlawful. This is, no doubt; a much more natural Exposition of the Prophet's Words, than what Grotius dreamr, when he apply'd those words to Antiochus Epiphanes's Cruelty, who did not care for Women, though never so beautiful, but ordered the Women of Jerusalem to be killed with their young Children, which they circumcised *.
Chap. xiii. Of the King who did according to bis Will, and magnified himself above every . God, and honoured Mahuzzints, and regarded
not the Desire of Women. The beginning of this Chapter is such, that I question whether it will have the Approbation of the generality of our Divines. “In the first Ages of the Chri.. 6 ftian Religion, fays our Author, the Christior ans of every City were governed by a Council « of Presbyters, and the President of the Coun“ cil was the Bishop of the City. The Bishop «i and Presbyter of one City meddled not with “ the Affairs of another City, except by ad« monitory Letters or Messages. Nor did the “ Bishops of several Cities meet together in 66 Council. before the time of the Emperor " Commodus : for they could not meet toge" ther without the leave of the Roman Go“ vernors of the Provinces. But in the Days " of that Emperor, they began to meet in “ provincial Councils, by the leave of the Go. vernors.--The Bishop of the chief City, or
16 Me. ... Machab. i. 63, 64. Ste Grotius in loc. ci Jofeph. Ane lib. xii. ch. 7.
6 Metropolis of the Roman Province was 66 usually made President of the Council; and 66 hence came the Authority of Metropolitan • Bishops, above that of other Bishops, with. « in the same Province. Hence also it was, " that the Bishop of Rome, in Cyprian's Days,
called himself the Bishop of Bishops. As 66 soon as the Empire became Chriftian, the 66 Roman Emperors began to call general 66 Councils out of all the Provinces of the • Empire ; and by prescribing to them what “ Points they should consider, and influencing 66 them by their Interest and Power, they set 6 up what Party they pleased. Hereby the so Greek Empire, upon the Division of the Ro66 man Empire, into the Greek and Latin Em6 pires, became the King, who, in Matters of “ Religion, did according to his Will, and in « Legislature, exalted and magnified bimself « above every God; and at length, by the • seventh General Council, established the « Worship of the Images, and Souls of dead 66 Men, here called Mabuzzims."
We beg leave to observe in this Place, that there is no reason why the Greek Empire should be the King, spoken of in Daniel, rather than the Latin Empire ; besides this, Sir Isaac told us in Chapter iv, that the Roman Empire was represented by the fourth Beast, as the Kingdom of the Greek was by the third. If then the He-Goat be the same with the third Beast, and if it be that King that did according to his Will, viz. the Roman Empire, it will follow thạc the third and fourth Beasts are the same, Gince they represent' at last the same Empire, that of the Romans. No. XXIII. 1733. , Ii, Qur
Our Author shews next, how the Sect of the Encralites, or Continents, fet on foot by the G#ofticksand propagated by Tatian and Montanus near the End of the fecond Century, which was condeinned by the Churches of that and the third Century, and refined upon by their Followers, ovet spread the eastern Churches in the fourth Century, and before the End of it began to overspread the Western ; when the Principles of the Enirarites, who maintained the unlawfulness of Marriage, not being imposed upon all Men, but only upon thofe who would voluntarily undertake a monaftick Life, began to be admired. Here we also find a short Account of the Rise and Progress of Monachism, both of Men and Women. Henceforward the Christian Churches having a Form of Godliness,, but denying the Power thereof, came into the hands of the Encratițes ; and the Heathens, who in the fourth Century came over in great numbers to the Christians, embraced more readily this sort of Christianity, as having a greater Affinity with their old Superftitions, than that of the sincere Chriftians; who, by the Làmps of the seven Churches of Asia, and not by the Lamps of the Monafteries, had illuminated the Church Catholick during the three firft Centuries. : " Tht Cataphrygians brought in also several Other Superstitions : such as were the Doctrine of Ghosts, and of their Punishment in Purgatory, with Prayers and Oblations for mitigating that Punishment. They also used the Sign of che Cross as a Charm. All these Superftitions the Apostle refers to, where he says, Now the Spirit Speaketh expresly, that in the latter times fome fall depart from the Faith, giving beed to